Links 5/13/13

Posted on by

‘Dramatic decline’ warning for plants and animals BBC

Fears grow over deadly new virus BBC

This Cheat Sheet Will Make You Win Every Climate Argument Mother Jones (Barry Ritholtz)

Don’t Mandate Labeling for Gene-Altered Foods Cass R. Sunstein, Bloomberg. Well, I suppose you can give him credit for being consistent

Communication by the European Central Bank: Inconsistent, yet effective? VoxEU. Speaking of consistency….

Austerity and the Unraveling of European Universal Health Care Dissent Magazine (Carol B)

Schäuble warns EU bank rescue agency needs treaty changes and
Banking union needs firm foundations Wolfgang Schäuble, Financial Times. He’s not the first to point this out, but this means no finesses.

27% of Spaniards are out of work. Yet in one town everyone has a job Independent (Lambert)

Spain Home Expropriation Plans Seen Violating EU Bailout Bloomberg

If The Rest Are Only Half As Bad As Ireland … Illargi

Debating Bill Maher on Muslims, Islam and US foreign policy Glenn Greenwald

Tomas de Torquemada in the U.S. armed forces McClatchy (Chuck L)

C. Wright Mills Explains the End of Liberalism Firedoglake (Carol B)

Cornel West: ‘They say I’m un-American’ Guardian

Medicare Drug Program Putting Seniors, People With Disabilities At Risk Huffington Post (Carol B). Some questions re provenance, but I’ve heard a lot of anecdotes along these lines.

Newspaper Monopoly That Lost Its Grip New York Times

Don’t Want that Sandwich? Can’t sell it? Don’t throw it away, though! Dowser

‘In Praise of Econowonkery’ Mark Thoma

College Grads Can Look Forward To Lots Of Job Openings — Unfortunately, No One’s Hiring Clusterstock

The job fatality rate isn’t budging, and no wonder, with penalties this low Daily Kos (Carol B)

Corporate Boards Are Still Failing Dean Baker

The price for junk bonds’ Golden Age will be slower growth Jon Authers, Financial Times

The Growing Cost of Having Kids Is Tipping More Women Towards Ambivalence about Motherhood AlterNet. Depressions do that.

Science fiction novels for economists Noah Smith (FT Alphaville)

Antidote du jour:


Print Friendly, PDF & Email


    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      It’s not a popular notion, but it is worth asking, can we happier with a smaller GDP, if our wealth is shared fairly?

      It’s a fundamental math error to assume the following accounting identity:

      GDP = Happiness.

      One would then falsely believe this:

      Increase in GDP = more happiness.

      Ask yourself, is that so?

      1. F. Beard

        if our wealth is shared fairly? MLTPB

        Wealth would be shared much more fairly if we had not had the government-backed credit cartel – the means by which the rich and other so-called “creditworthies” are granted new purchasing power at the expense of everyone else.

  1. financial matters

    If The Rest Are Only Half As Bad As Ireland … Illargi

    “”Let’s cautiously summarize it this way: Europe’s finances – still – are in tatters. Ireland and Spain are just two examples. We can come up with similar stories about a handful (or two) of other countries. Perception for now remains that Draghi will do whatever it takes – re: buy buy buy – to rescue anyone and everyone. But that perception rests on the idea that he can, in the first place. Jeremy Warner puts his finger on a sore spot that doesn’t get nearly enough attention anymore:”… in the end, no amount of liquidity can cover up for an underlying problem with solvency”.

    The illusion of central bank omnipotence, be it in setting interest rates or in buying up any and all kinds of paper, will continue until it doesn’t; we have our media, our politicians and our own gullibility and wishful thinking to thank for that. In the meantime, though, hardly any of the problems in Europe are truly being solved. Moreover, those that are even attempted will increasingly involve bail-ins as a way of funding bail-outs.

    It’s just a matter of time until the walls come down, and of course it’s ironic that the longer reality can be kept hidden underneath the carpet, the less real it seems. But that’s simply a predictable consequence of having short attention spans. And we should be able to look beyond that””

    The Fed is following a similar problem of buying MBS thinking that will get us out of a solvency crisis. When what we really need is fiscal re-structuring to get us out of this financial quagmire. We are sacrificing employment to try and prop up assets to bail out creditors rather than focusing on employment as the only rational basis to re-start the economy as well as policies to write off this bad debt.

    Instead the opposite is happening “”those that are even attempted will increasingly involve bail-ins as a way of funding bail-outs.”” This is Cyprus and MF Global speak for finding more ways to pay off creditors as they are chasing any available capital rather than having these bad loans written off and this capital used toward productive investment. Various ‘re-hypothecation’ schemes or ‘derivatives take precedent over depositors money’ are more ways for the financial system to parasitize this capital rather than have it used to produce a medically secure, educated workforce.

  2. Goin' South

    Re: Science Fiction for Economists–

    It’s great that the reviewer includes Ursula LeGuin’s “The Dispossessed,” but he gets one thing quite wrong. Yes, the Anarchist world is hardly luxurious, but that’s because they had to exile themselves to a barely habitable moon in order to escape the oppression of the lush, Capitalist-ruled planet. Establishing a permanent society at all ini those circumstances is LeGuin’s tribute to what Anarchism can accomplish.

    The problem on Anarres (the Anarchist world) isn’t poverty. That only exists among the vast majority on the Capitalist world, Urras. The issue is the clash between the Anarchist egalitarian morality and the inherent uniqueness of human beings.

    1. Jessica

      “The issue is the clash between the Anarchist egalitarian morality and the inherent uniqueness of human beings.”

      At the current level of human development, we misperceive our uniqueness as specialness. Specialness means that I am unique, but others are not. My being special depends on many others being not special. This separates us and drives us apart. This is how the obsolete competitiveness of our economy shows up in the area of self-identity.
      At a more mature level of human development (and social development), we will recognize that I am unique and that others are too. Uniqueness is common to all of us and holds us together.
      In other words, the problems that arise in The Dispossessed are what would happen if we put people with the current level of individual, psychological development into a society that has a higher level of social development.

      1. Goin' South

        I should have used “tension” rather than “clash.”

        It seems to me that Le Guin treats at least two problems in her Anarchist society. The first is the ever-present tendency toward bureaucracy. Shevek’s problems with his supervisor Sabul are the same as what we’d encounter in our society. Yes, Sabul is bucking Odonian morality by acquiring and abusing authority, but that’s an ever-present issue against which we must be vigilant.

        The other problem is more troubling. The playwright Tirin is a victim of Odonian morality in a way. Shevek sees it:

        “Our own internalised Sabul–convention, moralism, fear of social ostracism, fear of being different, fear of being free!”

        The Odonians had a strict morality based on egalitarianism and mutual aid. It held their society together in difficult times without the need for overt authority. Ironically, that morality isolated, even tortured those people who are the very type who advocate for Anarchism in non-Anarchist societies: the non-conformists, the dreamers, those who chafe at the “authority” of the crowd.

        While it’s true that we have a lot to learn about living together after being socialized in a sick Capitalist society, not all the issues disappear in the absence of that socialization.

        None of that is to say that the Anarchist solution shouldn’t be tried. It’s just that we must recognize that there are tensions and problems even in an Anarchist society.

        1. Jessica

          Yes, the Anarchist solution is worth trying and yes whatever solution we find that works will create a new higher level of problems.
          I agree that “being socialized in a sick Capitalist society” creates distortions in us as individuals and as a society and that those distortions will need to be sorted through. They will not just vanish.
          In addition to that, I think that a more advanced society will also both enable and require us to mature to a new higher level that was never achieved before.
          The average level of individual development evolves over time, but the pace is slow enough that it is not obvious within a lifetime. (Technological change was similarly difficult to notice before the Industrial Revolution.) I believe that compared to say 500 years ago, people now are more individuated, have broader vision, and extend their range of compassion farther. Many of the injustices that bother us and that are chronicled on blogs like this did not used to register as a problem for most people.

    2. The Black Swan

      Anarres never seemed to be a poor and boring world. Only through the lens of the elite in a capitalist society could things be viewed this way. For the mass of impoverished people on Urras, Anarres looked like Utopia. Everyone was fed, everyone had a home, no one lorded it over the rest.

      Everyone can starve in front of their big screen TV or everyone can sit around a table and share a meal and conversation. One society views the former as wealth, the other views the latter as wealth.

  3. D. Schultz

    The ProPublica piece in Salon on Medicare Part D seems confused. Are the juvenile patients mentioned in this article actually Medicare recipients or Medicaid beneficiaries? The problems of off-label use aren’t problems unique to Medicare Part D formularies; Medicare Part D usage is following private, for profit practice in this regard.

    A great deal of time is spent talking about a particular physician accused of fraud but it’s not clear that such levels of prescription-writing are common among Part D prescribers.

    I would agree that there are problems with over-prescription but those problems are not unique to Medicare Part D. It seems to me that those problems are pandemic in the American health care system. Perhaps some of the problems could be eliminated or better controlled for were Medicare Part D not done through private, for-profit insurers.

    1. afisher

      Some Seniors are both Medicare and Medicaid patients. As to whether to privatize this part of Medicare – I’d wait until 2014 when Sen. Grassley’s Sunshine Act database is made public.
      Personally – I would prefer Part D to be changed so that there is competitive bidding as with VA system. That won’t solve the “over-subscribing” problem, but couple that with the Sunshine Act – then look at cost overrides – that were never ever considered when this legislation was passed in 2002 /03.

  4. Jim Haygood

    The Times-Titanic virtually writes the obituary for the Times-Picayune of New Orleans (owned by New York’s Newhouse family):

    Jed Horne, a former editor at the Times-Picayune said, “They promised a Tesla and it performs more like an Edsel.”

    “Our hope is that we will be treated to an invigorating old-time press war between the Baton Rouge Advocate and the Times-Picayune, but of course, it could end up being two dinosaurs fighting over the last mud hole on an overheated planet.”

    LOL, Jed! My money’s on the mean green stegosaurus!

    Meanwhile, the headline on today’s top right column of the Times-Titanic website reads (I’m not making this up): Who Can Take Republicans Seriously?

    … doubtless inspiring their legions of toothless Boomer readers to refight the ideological wars of their youth, jabbing at each other with canes in the rest home.

    Five years from now, the Times-Titanic will be gone, too, as its absurd business model of printing highly perishable news on ink-laden paper goes the way of the iceman and the vacuum tube radio. But one expects that Kurgman will level a last blast at his vile enemies in the final edition.

  5. frosty zoom

    “But with respect to food, there are countless facts that people might conceivably want to know, and government doesn’t require them to be placed on labels. Unless science can identify a legitimate concern about risks to health or the environment, the argument for compulsory GM labels rests on weak foundations.” Cass R. Sunstein

    well, mr. sunstein, the government doesn’t tell you it’s listening to your phone calls, either. it doesn’t tell you who it’s torturing and from which agricultural companies it has taken bribes.

    and, “science”, has shown multiple problems with this “technology”, but perhaps these scientists have not yet paid you (nudge, nudge) or you have not invested in their companies, and so, your vision is a little blurred.

    hundreds of thousands of years of evolution squished into a lab and then unleashed with a year or two of “testing” in the field does not readily prove the safety of something.

    if mr. market is so smart, let the people decide. i for one do not want warthog genes in my poptarts!

    1. Goin' South

      Any government-mandated labeling will be suspect for the same reasons you mention in your comment. It’s just another avenue for corruption to travel.

      Know where your food comes from as much as possible. Grow your own as much as possible. Deal directly with the farmers who raise the rest of your food.

      It is possible. Go to your local farmers’ market and get to know people. Set up some CSAs for your neighborhood.

      Even if there were labeling, the Cass Sunsteins of the world would be in charge.

      1. frosty zoom


        i do buy my food from farmers i know etc., but not everybody has the time, transportation etc., to do so.

        ingredient lists on foods i do buy in the supermarket are very helpful, and to a large degree, accuratish.

        more than anything, perhaps labelling gmos would turn people away from this stuff and mr. market would have a chance to give el monsanto et al. a little push towards sanity.

  6. Yonatan

    Label GM foods? I propose going one step further. I think it’s time to label politicians and journalist / propagandists / lobbyists. They should be required to wear the brands of each and every corporation that feeds them – just like NASCAR or F1 drivers.

    1. frosty zoom

      that’s my meme i copyrighted in 2002.

      i expect the royalty cheque promptly.

      thank you.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        I am not sure we need fancy cars – charisma is over-rated and it’s just another inequality pit peopled by superficial buyers.

        I prefer utilitarian cars and as is the custom with those vehicles, one can test drive them and if one is not impressed, one can return them.

        It would like, after the first one hundred days, we say, sorry, it’s a bummer, but we want someone else to run our drone program.

  7. theblamee

    Your warm and fuzzy animal picture of the momma bear holding her cub in paws that could crush a Volkswagen Beetle with one only one bear hug fails to hit the cutesie mark in one very real respect. The tracking collar bolted securely around the mother’s neck represents what our “drone culture” wants to do to all mothers everywhere. And the fathers, and the cubs, the grandmothers and grandfathers, everybody, everywhere. Aw, how sweet.

    1. psychohistorian

      The minute I saw the collar the picture became ugly to me and I moved on…..

      1. Susan the other

        The moment a collar is put on a bear, it changes the bear like the moment a particle is observed it changes the particle. We should all have a deep respect for the direction of change. Change is such a great universal, so then why are we are incapable of understanding it, let alone using it. Where is the analysis and dialog about this theory?

      2. JEHR

        The collar may be a tracking collar used by scientists to see how the bears in a certain area are eating, procreating and living their lives. It might be important to their survival.

      1. AbyNormal

        ‘ ))

        Astronauten råder sonen,
        stå i bostadskö på månen

        (Hyland’s rhyming alphabet)

  8. Lambert Strether

    “Tomas de Torquemada in the U.S. armed forces” is close to a must read. Lawrence Wilkerson (a reasonably sane conservative in the Bruce Bartlett mode) joined the board of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, and the Christianist — note “ist” — loons in the military are as virulent as ever, it seems. This after losing two wars. No doubt the explanation is that the military isn’t Christianist enough.

    1. from Mexico

      Lawrence Wilkrson said:

      One day, staring into the dark recesses of his swamp covered with the detritus of modern civilization, Pogo said something like this to his companion, Porkypine: “Yep, son, we have met the enemy and he is us.”

      There’s quite an amazing video documentary where Ethan McCord, one of the foot soldiers sent in to clean up the bloodbath in the aftermath of the “Collateral Murder” incident (the video of which Manning has now admitted he released to Wikleaks) concludes almost the same thing Pogo did:

      “I wanted to be that soldier, that hero. So I went, and realized…that there was no enemy. The only terrorists when I was in Iraq was us. We were the terrorists. We were the one terrorizing people.”

      There’s also an absolutely superb German movie, Napola, that has an almost identical passage. One of the subplots of the movie involves a 16 year-old boy, Albrecht Stein, who is sent to one of the Führer’s elite military schools, Napola, by his father, who is the regional head of the Nazi Party. Albrecht, however, is a very sensitive boy who speaks in a rather high-pitched voice and whose passions are poetry, writing and literature. He is not good at sports, which very much disappoints his father. His father wants to transform him into a ruthless, merciless, cold-blooded killer like himself, but the transformation never takes place. After participating in an incident in which several Russian escapees were killed, Albrecht writes an essay in defiance of his father, which can be seen on youtube here:

      Despite being a bit childish, winter and a view of freshly fallen snow awakens in us a feeling of inexplicable joy. Perhaps because as children, we think of snow in relation to Christmas. In my dreams I am the hero who saves the virgin from the dragon, one who frees the world from evil. When searching for the escapees yesterday, I remembered the boy who wanted to save the world from evil. Upon returning I realized that I myself am that evil, the very evil I wanted to free the world from. Killing the captives was wrong. They weren’t armed, as Stein had told us, just to bait us. We didn’t shoot men, but helpless children.

    2. from Mexico

      Lawrence Wilkerson said:

      …I pored through records of their obscenities, vicious hatred and other manifestations of their more insidious members’ minds – I changed my mind. That so-called followers of Christ could write and say such things, and their defenders and representatives in the media, Congress and elsewhere could ally with them, made my blood boil….

      And this one came from an almost unbelievable source: so-called Christians.

      I write “so-called” simply because these people do not believe in the Christ of the scriptures; they believe in some human-crafted, almost devil-like version of Christ. These people have done to Christ what Osama bin Laden did to Muhammad.

      I think that’s a very Pollyannaish view of Christianity that’s not at all realistic.

      I thought perhaps the LGBT population had a disproportionately smaller population with the killer instinct than the general population too, but reading the comments in response to the Bradley Manning imbroglio disabuses one of that notion. It’s like Ernst Röhm and his storm batallion (SA) thugs have returned with a passion.

  9. Paul Walker

    One day Glenn may come to appreciate that Bill received his education is religious tolerance at some ivy university in Salem, Mass.

      1. curlydan

        And like most concerned citizens, I try to listen to both sides of the story every day: NakedCapitalism and FireDogLake.

        1. Kurt Sperry

          It’s been down for at least five hours now. I hope it’s OK, we just got most of the zombie-like Obamabots chased off the site the past six months or so and it’s bee good.

    1. psychohistorian

      I want to start a Global War on Wars !!!

      The coming request to sacrifice for the coming war(s) might get a different reception as we sink into our new/extended Depression.

      Are we frogs or humans and is the water boiling yet?

      1. AbyNormal

        you won’t be lonely psych

        There are causes worth dying for, but none worth killing for.

        1. Susan the other

          @ 6 am intermountain the PR/BBC news had David Cameron explaining why we needed to suport the Syrian “rebels” even tho’ Russia had joined the discussion on behalf of its ally Syria. Pure twist. And it was a first in my listening experience that a pawn like a prime minister was used to blabber on on public radio.

          1. crlarue

            O’Canada, Once the bastion of truth and justice….
            A sanctuary from madness during the Vietnam war!

        2. charles sereno

          “Hides the face
          Lies the snake”

          Stretch it out a few feet, not just anapests:

          “In the death grimaces
          Of their faces”

          (Just a stupid suggestion)

        3. Kurt Sperry

          “There are many things worth living for, a few things worth dying for, and nothing worth killing for.”

          ― Tom Robbins, Even Cowgirls Get the Blues

  10. Jessica

    The article “Science fiction novels for economists” and the extra books in the comments are worth reading.
    I held off at first because of the low regard I have for economics and economists, but the article turns out to be more like:
    Science fiction novels for what economists would be like if they had* intellectual curiosity and gave a rat’s ass about humanity.
    Please understand the word “had” here not to be past tense, but subjunctive contrary-to-fact mode.

      1. ScottS

        That’s funny, because I’ve never felt so subjunctive in all my life! Hey, my wife tells me that all the time: “Not tonight, I’m in a subjunctive mood!” No respect I tell ya, no respect.

    1. ginnie nyc

      Try “what economists would be like if they had had intellectual curiosity” to convey the subjunctive.

  11. rich

    Presidents at Public Universities Make Millions as Tuition Soars

    The millionaires club include:

    Former Pennsylvania State University President Graham Spanier, who was fired as a result of a sex abuse scandal. His total compensation: $2.9 million.
    Auburn (AL) University President Jay Gogue: $2.54 million
    Ohio State University President E. Gordon Gee: $1.9 million
    Former George Mason (VA) President Alan Merten: $1.87 million

    Are these academics paid too much at a time when students not only are paying more for college but graduating without a job or at least a good-paying one?

    “It feels like a big disconnect,” says Michael Santoli, senior columnist for Yahoo! Finance. “I don’t know if this should be a focal point for why college costs are out of whack….but probably, along with health insurance, a big driver for why costs go up,” says Santoli, about the rising pay for public college presidents.

    1. Jessica

      The problem is not just college presidents but the overall massive increase in college bureaucracies, the iceberg of which the presidents are the tip.

      1. Jessica

        These swollen university administrative ranks reflect the perversity of trying to fit knowledge production into social rules that worked (more or less) for the production of material goods.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          We have progressed a long way from ‘enlightenment, one mind at a time’ to ‘brain washing, sorry, education, most profitable for the Machine.’

          Where is that applause button?

    2. curlydan

      I can make the argument that the prezzes are underpaid if you look at their true function and how they might be paid in a different industry. All these guys (ok, there’s a rare female) are salesman. They go, have some white wines, give their sales pitch wrapped up images of “the kids” who now have “the new buildings” that you schmucks never had, get the checks, and fly home.

      They’re salesman! If I were a university president, I’d clamor for more money because I’m getting underpaid because normally I’d be on commission.

      Sure, it’s looting, but that’s what rentier capitalism is all about. Get rich or die tryin’, and be sure to listen to NPR on the way to the gig.

  12. Susan the other

    Dissent. Adam Gaffney. Unravellling Health Care. Very good analysis. Which we can all attest to as we have watched the slaughter for almost 5 years. We all already know that to attack illness we need science, applied science, technology, public projects, and a system that (unfortunately not the one that we have) eliminates extraction. There must be an insanity survival factor.

    1. AbyNormal

      without “science, applied science, technology, public projects, and a system that (unfortunately not the one that we have) eliminates extraction” TPTB go down with ship…and we must remember (from their actions) they’re in for short term gains ‘take all’…so sanity is in the trunk.

  13. Jessica

    Two related widespread social patterns in recent years: 1) The misuse of numbers to intensify control over, for example, education and health care, but done in a way that clearly reduces their actual utility for those nominally being served, and 2) The swelling of bureaucracies charged with running those numbers and with maintaining the image of the institutions that are being hollowed out by this revenue stream extraction. This image maintenance is a complex process involving much shadow puppet performance (for example, kayfab), the enforcement of various rules about discussion that help hinder non-orthodox thought and marginalize and suppress it when it occurs, and careful monitoring especially of the upper echelons of those doing the actual work in the institution in order to ensure their conformity with the party line. Of course, the most important party line in contemporary America is the untrue claim that there is no party and therefore no party line.
    This is connected to the suppression of free knowledge production and the use of copyrights/patents as a weapon to collect rents and prevent progress. What is common in both cases is the attempt to take rules that more or less worked for industrial production and use them in areas where they are fundamentally incompatible. Because of the tremendous achievements of industrial production, the areas where there is room for the most progress are precisely these non-industrial areas where the rules that sort of worked for industrial development are not just less than optimal, but profoundly counter-productive. In other words, the current system is historically obsolete and incapable of solving any of these problems. It is not even capable of refraining from making them much worse.

  14. AbyNormal

    Prisons are REITs now????WTF
    The Corrections Corporation of America, which switched to a REIT structure, runs the Stewart Detention Center in Lumpkin, Ga., and estimates it will save $70 million in taxes this year.

    …considering the counties where prisons are located i don’t imagine they can afford the losses…i know lumpkin co. can’t jeeeze where have i been

    1. ScottS

      As was pointed out here some weeks ago, the primary difference between a prison and a house is who has the key.

    2. curlydan

      At first blush, I can’t believe CCA could get away with this. But maybe the IRS remembered that REITs were designed to be a “passive investment”, and God knows that’s how prisoners are treated in this country. These are human beings, not blocks of cement and re-bar on a piece of land!!

      Or maybe the IRS’s Treasury Dept masters just want to funnel more $$$s to the blessed shareholders.

  15. diane

    If any wonder, why the Non Profit Indu$try can be so life threateningly hideous and Orwellian, all they need do … is research the fact that the “Top” Legal[Ju$t U$] and Money [Ac]counting Indu$try firms have always made sure their young and naive $taff, “get involved” (no matter that the “nonprofit” may actually be worthless to those in actual need of charity ….. in order to make good with the BO$$ Partner), while those BO$$ Partners litter the Board$ of those Non Profit$. (They could also research the stunningly high attrition rate of females, who have historically been held responsible for, and played the predominant role in, nurturing, among tho$e Indu$strie$.)

    A real winning combination, young, wanna be top alpha dog attorney$ and cpa$ ….bagging Monsanto lettuce ….. for the exponentially increasing homeless and dying ………..

    Capitali$m does not work …. never did. …And historically, what did that really have to do with Russia or China, et al, and those nightmare realities those countries have had going on for centuries?

    1. charles sereno

      Skueeky, can I squeeze in another juicy bit? It’s reported that the Associated Press was shocked, as well as outraged, by their discovery of a massive, as well as, intrusive entry by AG Holder into their private, as well as, bureau drawers. Unprecedented, as well as embarrassing, they say.

  16. davidgmills

    The last place I am going to get information on how to make an argument for or against global warming is a political blog. I will go to blogs where people seriously discuss the sun, the geological record, the meterological record, the biological record, the chemical record, or computer modeling, but I am not going to a political website. Or an economic one.

    1. AbyNormal

      “get information on how to make an argument”
      bhahahahaaa an i thought i was the nc numbnuts (an i don’t even have any)

      Discussion is an exchange of knowledge; argument an exchange of ignorance. ~quillen

      1. skippy

        Hay i thought i was the nc numbnuts. – Abynormal

        Skip here… “and the monkey flipped the switch” is the most profound observation… I’ve had the misfortune of acknowledging.

        Skippy… Seigniorage is a play here good fellow…

    2. skippy

      Your favorite climate blog n’es pas WUWT.

      Willard Anthony Watts (born 1958)[1] is an American meteorologist[2][3] (AMS seal holder, certification retired by AMS),[4][5] president of IntelliWeather Inc.,[6] editor of the blog, Watts Up With That?,[7] and founder of the Surface Stations Project, a volunteer initiative to document the siting quality of weather stations across the United States.[8]

      View of climate change [edit]

      Watts has expressed a skeptical view of anthropogenic CO2-driven global warming, believing the Sun, not man, is the driver of climatic change.[27][28] He has said that in 1990 he had “been fully engaged in the belief that CO2 was indeed the root cause of the global warming problem,” but that he later changed his thinking after learning more about the science and “found it to be lacking.”[29] Watts more recently expressed his position as: “Now I’m in the camp of we have some global warming. No doubt about it, but it may not be as bad as we originally thought because there are other contributing factors.” He further avers that what most bothers him about scientists and others who claim global warming is serious, is that, “They want to change policy. They want to apply taxes and these kinds of things may not be the actual solution for making a change to our society.”[30] Watts is a signatory to The Heartland Institute’s Manhattan Declaration which calls on world leaders to “reject the views expressed by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change” and abandon “all taxes, regulations, and other interventions intended to reduce emissions of CO2”.[31] In spite of his climate change skepticism, Watts says that he is “green in many ways.”[32]

      Watts Up With That? [edit]
      Watts established the blog, Watts Up With That? (WUWT?) in 2006. The blog focuses on the global warming controversy, in particular, Watts skepticism about the role of humans in global warming.[32] Fred Pearce has described WUWT? as the “world’s most viewed climate website”.[32] In 2008, WUWT? won the internet voting-based “Best Science Blog” Wizbang Weblog Award.[33][34]

      Watts’s blog has been criticized for inaccuracy. The Guardian columnist George Monbiot described WUWT as “highly partisan and untrustworthy”.[35] Leo Hickman, at The Guardian’s Environment Blog, also criticized Watts’s blog, stating that Watts “risks polluting his legitimate scepticism about the scientific processes and methodologies underpinning climate science with his accompanying politicised commentary.”[36] David Suzuki recommends Skeptical Science for accurate science on the topic of climate change. “There are many credible sources of information, and they aren’t blog sites run by weathermen like Anthony Watts”.[37] – wiki

      skip here… who’s blog lists as political go to icons…

      Political Climate
      American Elephants
      Andrew Bolt
      Autonomous Mind
      Christopher Booker
      Climate Depot
      EU Referendum – Richard North
      Green Hell Blog
      James Delingpole
      NYT Dot Earth – Revkin
      Planet Gore

      Lets see who these folks are… eh.

      James Delingpole

      James Delingpole is a writer, journalist and broadcaster who is right about everything. He is the author of numerous fantastically entertaining books, including his most recent work Watermelons: How the Environmentalists are Killing the Planet, Destroying the Economy and Stealing Your Children’s Future, also available in the US, and in Australia as Killing the Earth to Save It. where you can by T-shirts with Property of Wassail athletic dept. emblazoned on the front.

      Christopher John Penrice Booker

      (born 7 October 1937) is an English journalist and author. In 1961, he was one of the founders of the magazine Private Eye, and has contributed to it since then. He has been a columnist for The Sunday Telegraph since 1990.[1] He has taken a stance which runs counter to the scientific consensus on a number of issues, including global warming, the link between passive smoking and cancer,[2] and the dangers posed by asbestos.[3] In 2009, he published The Real Global Warming Disaster, described by The Observer as “the definitive climate sceptics’ manual”.[4]

      Views on science [edit]

      Booker’s weekly columns in The Sunday Telegraph have covered a wide range of topics of public interest. Booker has been described by English writer James Delingpole in The Spectator as doing “the kind of proper, old-school things that journalists hardly ever bother with in this new age of aggregation and flip bloggery: he digs, he makes the calls, he reads the small print, he takes up the cause of the little man and campaigns, he speaks truth to power without fear or favour”.[8] On a range of health issues, Booker has put forward a view that the public is being unnecessarily “scared”, as detailed in his book Scared to Death. Thus he argues that asbestos, passive smoking[2] and BSE[9] have not been shown to be dangerous. His views on these matters go against scientific consensus, and as a result have attracted much criticism from other journalists as well as public bodies. Thus his articles on asbestos and on global warming have been repeatedly challenged by George Monbiot of The Guardian,[10][11] and the UK Health and Safety Executive has repeatedly refuted his claims about asbestos.

      Booker has repeatedly claimed that white asbestos is “chemically identical to talcum powder” and poses a “non-existent” risk to human health,[12] relying primarily on a 2000 paper for the UK’s Health and Safety Executive by John Hodgson and Andrew Darnton.[13] He wrote in January 2002 that “HSE studies, including a paper by John Hodgson and Andrew Darnton in 2000, concluded that the risk from the substance is “virtually zero”.[14] In response, the HSE’s Director General, Timothy Walker, wrote that Booker’s articles on asbestos had been “misinformed and do little to increase public understanding of a very important occupational health issue.”[15] The Health and Safety Executive issued further rebuttals to articles written by Booker in both 2005[16][17] and in 2006.[18][19] In an article in May 2008, Booker again cited the Hodgson and Darnton paper, claiming that ‘they concluded that the risk of contracting mesothelioma from white asbestos cement was “insignificant”, while that of lung cancer was “zero”‘.[20] This article was also criticised by the UK’s Health and Safety Executive as “substantially misleading”,[21] as well as by George Monbiot, who argued that Booker misrepresented the authors’ findings.[22] Booker’s claims were also critically analysed by Richard Wilson in his book Don’t Get Fooled Again (2008). Wilson highlighted Booker’s repeated endorsement of the alleged scientific expertise of John Bridle, who in 2004 was convicted under the UK’s Trade Descriptions Act of making false claims about his qualifications [23]

      Climate change [edit]

      On climate change Booker is a global warming denier, and claimed in his long-running column in the Sunday Telegraph that 2008 was “the year man-made global warming was disproved”, amid “a turning point in the great worldwide panic over man-made global warming”.[24] He later wrote that the Climate Change Act 2008 was “the most expensive piece of legislation ever put through Parliament”, and likely to cost hundreds of billions over the next 40 years.[25] In May 2009 Booker spoke at an International Conference on Climate Change organised by The Heartland Institute.[26] In the Autumn of 2009, he published The Real Global Warming Disaster. The book, which became his bestselling work, questions whether there is a scientific consensus for anthropogenic global warming and postulates that the measures taken by governments to combat climate change “will turn out to be one of the most expensive, destructive, and foolish mistakes the human race has ever made”.[27] The book was described by The Observer as being as “the definitive climate sceptics’ manual,” although the reviewer found that much of the book, “including the central claim, is bunk”.[4]

      In December 2009, Christopher Booker and Richard North published an article in The Sunday Telegraph in which they questioned whether Rajendra Pachauri, chair of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), was using his position for personal gain,[28][29][30][31] with a follow-up Telegraph article in January 2010.[32] On 21 August 2010,The Daily Telegraph issued an apology,[29] and withdrew the December article from their website[30] having reportedly paid legal fees running into six figures.[30] Dr Pachauri described the statements against him as “another attempt by the climate sceptics to discredit the IPCC.”[33]

      Intelligent design [edit]
      Booker has also argued in support of intelligent design, claiming that supporters of the theory of evolution “rest their case on nothing more than blind faith and unexamined a priori assumptions”.[34] – wiki

      Andrew Bolt

      (born 26 September 1959 in Adelaide, South Australia)[1] is an Australian journalist,[2] newspaper columnist, radio commentator, blogger and television host. He is a columnist and former associate editor of the Melbourne-based Herald Sun. He has appeared on the Nine Network, Melbourne Talk Radio, ABC Television, Network Ten and local radio. In 2005, Bolt released a compilation of newspaper columns in a book entitled The Best of Andrew Bolt—Still Not Sorry.[3] From 2011, he has hosted The Bolt Report on Network Ten.[4]

      Bolt is a self-described “conservative”[5][6] but rejects the label “right-wing”.[7]

      Stolen Generations

      Bolt has frequently clashed with Robert Manne, Professor of Politics at La Trobe University, about the Stolen Generation. Bolt claims there were no large-scale removals of children “for purely racist reasons”. After Bolt challenged Manne to “name just 10” children stolen for racial reasons,[11] Manne replied with fifty names which, Bolt pointed out, included children rescued from sexual abuse and removed for other humanitarian reasons.[12] Manne argued that Bolt’s views on the subject constitute a case of historical denialism.[13] Bolt noted multiple instances of contemporary Aboriginal children being left “in grave danger that we would not tolerate for children of any other race because we are so terrified of the ‘stolen generations’ myth.”[14]

      Defamation case

      In 2002, Magistrate Jelena Popovic was awarded $246,000 damages for defamation after suing Bolt and the publishers of the Herald Sun over a 13 December 2000 column in which he claimed she had “hugged two drug traffickers she let walk free”. Popovic asserted she had in fact shaken their hands to congratulate them on having completed a rehabilitation program. The jury found that the article was not true, that it was not a faithful and accurate record of judicial proceedings and that it was not a fair comment on a matter of public interest. It found that the column had, however, been reasonable and not malicious.[15]

      Bolt emerged from the Supreme Court after the jury verdict, stating his column had been accurate and that the mixed verdict was a victory for free speech. His statement outside the court was harshly criticised by Supreme Court judge Bernard Bongiorno, who later overturned the jury’s decision, ruling that Bolt had not acted reasonably because he did not seek a response from Ms Popovic before writing the article and, in evidence given during the trial, showed he did not care whether or not the article was defamatory. Justice Bongiorno included $25,000 punitive damages in his award against Bolt and the newspaper for both the “misleading” and “disingenuous” comments he had made outside court and the newspaper’s reporting of the jury’s decision. The Court of Appeal later reversed the $25,000 punitive damages, though it upheld the defamation finding, describing Bolt’s conduct as “at worst, dishonest and misleading and at best, grossly careless”.[16]


      In September 2010, nine individuals commenced legal proceedings in the Federal Court against Bolt and the Herald Sun over two separate posts on Bolt’s blog. The nine sued over posts titled “It’s so hip to be black”/”White is the New Black” and “White Fellas in the Black”. The articles suggested it was fashionable for “fair-skinned people” of diverse ancestry to choose Aboriginal racial identity for the purposes of political and career clout.[17][18] The applicants claimed the posts breached the Racial Discrimination Act. They sought an apology, legal costs, and a gag on republishing the articles and blogs, and “other relief as the court deems fit”. They did not seek damages.[19]

      On 28 September 2011 Bolt was found to have contravened section 18C of the Racial Discrimination Act.[17][20] – wiki

      Skippy… anywho your no skeptic, more like an ideological polemic operative. Your attempts to disguise your self by comments on blogs like dissent voice is [fits of laughter.. inverted conservative bell curve – intelligent design thingy] is an EPIC FAIL… SEE:

      PS. you folks will do anything, anything, too validate your theocracy … lie, cheat, steal, obfuscate, fraudulent diminish, fabricate, you name it and you’ll do it. All anchors around humanity’s and life on this planet – as we know it – lying scum – ignorance inc llc~

      1. skippy

        Oopsie forgot Watts funding see:

        Affiliation with Heartland Institute [edit]

        The Heartland Institute published Watts’ preliminary report on weather station data, titled Is the U.S. Surface Temperature Record Reliable?.[12] Watts has been featured as a speaker at Heartland Institute’s International Conference on Climate Change, for which he acknowledges receiving payment.[54]

        Documents obtained from the Heartland Institute and made public in February 2012 reveal that the Institute had agreed to help Watts raise $88,000 to set up a website, “devoted to accessing the new temperature data from NOAA’s web site and converting them into easy-to-understand graphs that can be easily found and understood by weathermen and the general interested public.”[55][56][57] The documents state that $44,000 had already been pledged by an anonymous donor, and the Institute would seek to raise the rest.[54] Watts explained the funding by stating, “Heartland simply helped me find a donor for funding a special project having to do with presenting some new NOAA surface data in a public friendly graphical form, something NOAA themselves is not doing, but should be. I approached them in the fall of 2011 asking for help, on this project not the other way around.”[58][59] and added, “They do not regularly fund me nor my WUWT website, I take no salary from them of any kind.”[58][60] – – wiki on Watts

        Skip here… so whos – what is the The Heartland Institute

        An American conservative and libertarian[2] public policy think tank based in Chicago, which states that it advocates free market policies.[3][4][5][6] The Institute is designated as a 501(c)(3) non-profit by the Internal Revenue Service and has a full-time staff of 40, including editors and senior fellows.[7] The Institute was founded in 1984 and conducts research and advocacy work on issues including government spending, taxation, healthcare, tobacco policy, hydraulic fracturing[8] global warming, information technology, and free-market environmentalism.

        In the 1990s, the group worked with the tobacco company Philip Morris to question the science linking secondhand smoke to health risks, and to lobby against government public-health reforms.[9][10][11] More recently, the Institute has focused on questioning the science of human-caused climate change, and was described by the New York Times as “the primary American organization pushing climate change skepticism.”[12] The Institute has sponsored meetings of climate change skeptics,[13] and has been reported to promote public school curricula challenging the scientific consensus on human-caused climate change.[14] -snip

        In its early years, Heartland Institute focused on policies relevant to the Midwestern United States. Since 1993 it has focused on reaching elected officials and opinion leaders in all 50 states. In addition to research, Heartland features an Internet application called “Policybot”[15] which serves as a clearinghouse for research from other conservative think tanks such as the Heritage Foundation, the American Legislative Exchange Council, and the libertarian Cato Institute.

        The Institute’s president and CEO is Joseph L. Bast.

        Skippy…. I’ll let bugs sazit for me…

        conversely… the intelligent libertarian mind being constructed by gawd…

        1. AbyNormal

          “An American conservative and libertarian[2] public policy think tank based in Chicago, which states that it advocates *free* market policies”

          klein: This points to a nagging and important question about free-market ideologues: Are they ‘true believers’, driven by ideology and faith that free markets will cure underdevelopment, as is often asserted, or do the ideas and theories frequently serve as an elaborate rationale to allow people to act on unfettered greed while still invoking an altruistic motive?

          David, I supply *free* popcorn over here…

      2. AbyNormal

        ah yes, one of my favs…the ole asbestos talcum powder argument.

        It is not many things that modern psychology agrees upon, but all the different approaches of psychology agrees on one thing: that people in groups become more stupid. Individually people are more intelligent, because they have to take their own responsibility, but in a group they do not have to take the same responsibility.
        The two basic power strategies to try to manipulate and gain control over another person are: silencing and attacking. Silencing means to not listen to, to exclude or ignore and not respect a person. Attack can both mean to attack a person directly or to try to discredit a person through lies, to ridicule a person or by spreading malicious rumors.
        All organizations are more or less dysfunctional. In a dysfunctional group, the members of the group play three different roles: aggressor, denier and victim. The aggressor is the role that attack and ridicule people, the denier never knows what is going on, there is “no body at home”, and the victim is the resultant of these two roles.
        It is always easier to follow a group without awareness, than to follow your own heart, to trust your own intelligence, love, truth, silence and creativity.”
        ― Swami Dhyan Giten, Presence – Working from Within. The Psychology of Being

        1. skippy

          Neoliberalism aka the – Chicago School – is not a butterfly… imo.

          And if painted child of dirt that stinks and stings [C.S. acolytes]… well… I’m neither Nero nor Paris/Sporus nor their contemporary’s.

          Neoliberalism is… the ***Catherine Wheel*** incarnate… life is – are the long bones… they ply themselves too… with religious – theocratic zeal. So when one of that mobs tools comes a calling, there is never too – Big a Cannon – in my book. What did – has all the discourse of the last decades accomplished with these fanatics, yeah were soaking in it, but, not unlike Mary Midgley, can feel morally validated for not attending to the problem at onset. In the end, it only made her labors harder… eh.

          Skippy… personally i’m down with Harmony’s introduction by William Shield:

          “Having brought this Introduction to Harmony before that awful Tribunal, the Public, without first submitting it to the inspection of a judicious friend, I shall doubtless merit severe correction from the Critic; but as my attempt has been rather to write a useful Book, than a learned Work, I trust that he will not break a Butterfly upon the wheel for not being able to soar with the wings of an Eagle.”

          1. skippy

            @Lambert… I was responding to the totality of every comment he/she has made here at NC and the blog-sphere, as a neoliberal acolyte.

            The vary fact that this commenter has tried too, in the past, align themselves, disguise themselves, as something they are not ie Dissent Voice blog, is a bold face lie. What this cretin may or may not accomplish here, they may poison the well some where else.

            Remember this thread?


            Skippy… going after one, is going after the hole enchilada, as both are the same borg like hive… en fin.

  17. Lambert Strether

    This is super weird:

    $ ping
    PING ( 56 data bytes
    Request timeout for icmp_seq 0
    Request timeout for icmp_seq 1
    Request timeout for icmp_seq 2
    Request timeout for icmp_seq 3
    Request timeout for icmp_seq 4
    Request timeout for icmp_seq 5
    Request timeout for icmp_seq 6
    Request timeout for icmp_seq 7
    Request timeout for icmp_seq 8

    9:11PM Not just me.

  18. Lidia

    BBC on the decline of biota: “[Swift action to reduce CO2] would also buy time – up to four decades – for plants and animals to adapt to the remaining 2 degrees of climate change.”

    Wow! A whole four decades!
    Come on guys… ADAPT already! Time’s a-wastin’!

    Oy veh. And they say the Americans have short attention spans.

Comments are closed.