Links 6/6/13

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BIC For Her Medium Ballpoint Pen (Box of 12) – Black Amazon. Richard Smith continues on his Consumerist beat of finding products designed for special tastes with suitably discerning reviews.

Humanities Fall From Favor Wall Street Journal. :-(

Facebook cofounder Sean Parker illegally damages redwood forest for fantasy Game of Thrones wedding Grist

Roman seawater concrete holds the secret to cutting carbon emissions PhysOrg (Robert M)

Japan’s radiation disaster toll: none dead, none sick The Age. Some interesting (as in not knee jerk) issues raided at Slashdot: Some of the radiation readings were shielded; big life saver/exposure reducer was the fast evacuation of 200,000 people, which per the article, resulted 1000 deaths. Shouldn’t that be attributed to the disaster?

Do Psychiatrists Create the Very Mental Problems They Claim to Treat? Alternet

Wisconsin child porn suspect doesn’t have to decrypt hard drives—for now ars technica (ScottS)

Return to sender: Spanish town’s solution to the dog mess problem – send it back to the owners Independent (YY)

Japanese Hodgepodge Of Old Ideas And New Contradictions, Stocks Dive In Sympathy Wolf Richter

‘Emerging markets displace Europe as fulcrum of risk’ Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, Telegraph

The Asian Housing Bubble Burst Triple Crisis

IMF ‘to admit mistakes’ in handling Greek debt crisis and bailout Guardian

French jobless rate at 15-year high BBC

Talk of recovery in Greece is premature – and all about justifying austerity Guardian

Debate rages over sale of Greek bank ops Cyprus Mail (Antonis)

Bilderberg Group? No conspiracy, just the most influential group in the world Telegraph. This is a zeitgeist indicator, but I’m not sure what it signifies.

Penguins Not Protests on Turkish TV Fuel Anger Bloomberg

U.S. Sinks Nails in Iranian Economic Coffin OilPrice. Tone too triumphalist for my taste, particularly given how we botched the Syrian adventure. But this certainly is the plan.

CIA chief ’spilled secrets’ to Hollywood: report Sydney Morning Herald (YY)

Revealed: NSA collecting phone records of millions of Americans daily Glenn Greenwald and Verizon forced to hand over telephone data – full court ruling Guardian (GR). Holy moley. Metadata, but the scope is still astonishing. And remember, we know only about Verizon.

Bradley Manning Is Guilty of “Aiding the Enemy” — If the Enemy Is Democracy Firedoglake

Paris threatens EU-US talks as China trade war looms Financial Times. Oh, it would be SO nice if France really were to throw a spanner in the works, but they are probably just angling for a sufficiently large bribe.

States’ Hospital Data for Sale Puts Privacy in Jeopardy Bloomberg

Philadelphia building collapse: ‘Ground-shaking’ Christian Science Monitor. Another example of America’s rapid descent into third world living standards. Gawker reports that the mayor has put the death toll at six so far. Detailed commentary by Philadelphian Paul Tioxon.

Hearing Examines Role of Proxy Advisory Firms House Financial Services Committee (MS). Retaliation for JPM shareholders pushing for separation of Chairman/CEO roles?

FEC General Counsel Announces Departure Back to Covington, natch.

Why gold is different from Bitcoins
John Quiggin

Quant hedge funds hit by bonds sell-off Financial Times

Antidote du jour:


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  1. Chris Engel

    RE: the NSA spying, phone records acquisitions, and growing police-state tactics.

    It’s crazy that even with all this spying and monitoring of “suspected” terrorist activity — the deep state couldn’t even handle the Tamerlan Boston bomber who was on Youtube doing terrorist crap and who the Russians warned the US about. Most of the “terror cell” cases the FBI cracks open are just cases of entrapment (see a great discussion of this in Terror Factory by Trevor Aaronson.) So it’s not like they have any success stories to point to for all this PATRIOT ACT invasive nonsense. Instead we’ve got evidence of the opposite per the Boston Bombing which had a million red flags and which all this spying should have caught.

    It makes you wonder just how competent they are to use all the data they’re gathering in the monitoring.

    But the news is not to be taken lightly, given the responses from Al Gore ( ) and the ACLU ( ).

    1. Juneau

      A friend of mind who does IT work feels the Google ruling is even scarier (I suspect I missed the post on this on NC, I may be re-posting)

      The scary part of this is the incompetence; I prefer malice, at least there is a genuine reason for going after someone;
      database errors are treacherous if they implicate you unfairly, good luck proving them wrong. And now the powers can hold on to your info, massage the data in various ways, share it with local authorities, for-EVER. eek. Time to go back to paper.

      1. Jim Haygood

        ‘Time to go back to paper.’

        You mean that old piece of parchment with ‘We the people’ scribbled on it?

        They burned that a long time ago.

        1. Walter Map

          The Constitution is kept locked up in a sealed case under 24-hour guard so it won’t cause any trouble. The Constitution is not dead. It’s imprisoned.

          1. from Mexico

            When it comes to a dictatorial, brutal and authoritarian personality types, we really haven’t seen anything quite like Obama in the White House for almost a century. Woodrow Wilson was the last president who, like Obama, used the United States Constituion as toilet paper to wipe his ass with.

            Obama drug out laws promulgated by Wilson a century earlier so he could prosecute Bradley Manning and other whistleblowers and reporters. Wilson, in his zeal to sell a skeptical American public on WWI, used the laws to persecute any dissenting voices opposed to WWI. The laws with a few exceptions laid dormant on the books for almost 100 years until Obama came along.

            For a short video of the history of how and why the laws Obama is using to persecute Manning, as well as other whilstleblowers and reporters, came about, there’s this outstanding film by Scott Noble:


          2. Jim Haygood

            Article 2, section 4: “The President, Vice President and all civil officers of the United States, shall be removed from office on impeachment for, and conviction of, treason, bribery, or other high crimes and misdemeanors.”

            You might think that wholesale, dragnet spying on the entire populace, in flagrant violation of Amendment IV, would be a ‘high crime.’

            But racketeers such as Obama and Holder are now held to the standard pronounced by ex-Louisiana governor Edwin Edwards in 1983: ‘The only way I can lose this election is if I’m caught in bed with either a dead girl or a live boy.’

            This might sound like sarcasm. But it succinctly explains both the impeachment of Clinton, and the lack of impeachment of his successors Bush and Obama.

          3. afisher

            First, I hate the Patriot Act and would like to see it thrown on the trash and burned.
            One needs to quit whining about the President using the tools that have been authorized by Congress. It isn’t hard to determine who voted for and/or against the 2011 re-authorization of this bill.
            It tires me to see outrage NOW and seemingly forget that you had an opportunity to voice an opinion in 2011. Of course hindsight is 20/20, but I assume you knew which legislator re-authorized it – and instead re-direct your outrage, which I suppose is based mostly on political ideology.

          4. harry

            It takes a constitutional lawyer to sh*t quite so comprehensively on the constitution. You should admire the elegant handiwork.

          5. Hugh

            afisher, you are no doubt aware that Obama voted to extend the Patriot Act in 2006


            and in 2010 and 2011, as President, Obama had vast influence over the legislative process. In 2010, the Democrats controlled both houses and in 2011 as now, the Senate. So had he wished Obama could have let any further extensions just die. Or in the extremely unlikely event that the Act was passed over his objections, he could have vetoed it.

            It seems a trifle disingenuous to say that Obama inherited powers which he specifically voted for as a Senator and which he has done nothing to withdraw or limit since.

    2. diptherio

      I’ll just point out, regarding the Boston bombing, that if your objective is to control a population through fear, it’s good to let one or two “slip through the net” occasionally, so everybody remembers why it’s OK for the police state to revoke their civil liberties.

      My take is this: the PTB knew about the plan (may have been in on it, entrapment style) and wanted to look all heroic by catching the perp in the nick of time. Hence all the bomb sniffing dogs and the heavy police presence that was mentioned by many spectators at the beginning of the race. But they f-ed up and failed to find the bomb before it went off. Then they start offing people to cover their tracks…

      FWIW, no one, at this point in time, should still be dumb enough to believe the PTB’s story when a suspect is killed in custody. One has to wonder why the FBI and police involved didn’t have their pepper-spray on them and had to go straight to using deadly force when Todashev supposedly charged with a metal pole (or maybe it was a broomstick…we’re not quite sure). And whatever happened to tasers? Apparently, the FBI has hired some Hollywood screenwriter to concoct their cover-stories for them.

      1. Chris Engel

        Yea that case in Florida of the friend of the Boston Bomber … that’s truly bizarre. To be killed that way in custody with a bullet to the back of the head?

        I just don’t trust anything anymore. I’m warming up to the idea that the assassinations in the 60’s were merely part of an MIC coup.

        1. from Mexico

          Not sure exactly where, but when it comes to Orwellianism, we certainly seem to have crossed the Rubicon.

          1. from Mexico

            @ skippy

            Thanks for the link. That is a very insightful article that gives an accurate portrayal of the situaiton inside Mexico.

            Unfortunately, the gringos don’t see much reporting like that. What they get are two defactualized versions of Mexico, one the distortions, half-truths and outright lies of the neoliberal/neocon faithful like Thomas Friedman, the other the sort of brain-dead ignorance and stupidity exhibited by Ruben Navarrette in this article:


            Navarette uses all the same logical and rhetorical tricks to demonize Mexicans that our new mega-bigots and mega-racists — Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris and Christopher Hitchens — have perfected in their demonization of Muslims, as explained here by Glenn Greenwald:


            Here by Nathan Lean:


            And here by Murtaza Hussain:


          2. from Mexico

            And regardless of whether one subscribes to the economic imperialism of Thomas Friedman or the moral and cultural imperialism of Ruben Navarrette, Richard Dawkins, Sam Harris and Christopher Hitchens, the subtext remains the same: a moral and intellectual rationale to justify global US hegemony and full spectrum dominance.

            Economic imperialism and moral-cultural imperialism go together like Thelma and Louise.

          3. from Mexico

            I just read the “Humanities Fall From Favor” article in the Wall Street Journal. Eliminating the study of the humanities from the curriculum seems to be the wet dream of neoliberals on both sides of the border.

            A study of the humanities reveals the perrennial conflict that exists between the two competing poles created by Platonic dualism. One pole entails notions like universal humanity, empathy, fairness and justice, as well as that “cosmic religious feeling” described by Albert Einstein. The other pole entails the notion that the only endeavors worth pursuing are those that pay immediate and predictable material dividends.

            It’s an old battle, and hardly the first time transcedency has collided with utilitarianism, or spirituality with materiality. As Stephen Toulmin explains:

            The triumph of Newtonian physics was, thus, a vote for theoretical cosmology, not for practical dividends, and the ideas of Newtonian theory were shaped by a concern for intellecutal coherence with a respectable picture of God’s material creation, as obeying Divine laws. This view too ignored the message of 16th-century humanism. The growth of scientific ideas was separated from concern with practical fruits, and scientific refinement of “pure” ideas was treated as distinct from the technical exploitation of “applied” techniques. Many people found Francis Bacon’s concern with “human goods” vulgar, or even sinful: it was enough for scientists to find the laws ruling natural phenomena, the better to glorify God, who first created Nature. Using our understanding of Nature to increase comfort, or to reduce pain, was secondary to the central spritual goal of Science. Rejecting in both method and spirit Bacon’s vision of a humanly fruitful science, Descartes and Newton set out to build mathematical structures, and looked to Science for theological, not technological, dividends.

            STEPHEN TOULMIN, Cosmopolis: The Hidden Agenda of Modernity

          4. nobody

            @from Mexico,

            North of the border, at least, the humanities have already eliminated themselves. It’s a case of suicide. The neoliberals are only signing the death certificate.

            To me, it has always been the heart of the mystery, the heart of the heart: the way people talk about loving things, which things, and why. Thus it was, after two years on university campuses without hearing anything approximating this kind of talk, I began feeling terrible, physically awful, confused and bereft. I kept trying to start this kind of talk, volunteering my new enthusiasms like a kid pulling frogs and magic rocks out of his pocket, but nothing worked. There was no BOUNCE, just aridity and suspicion. It finally dawned on me that in this place that we had set aside to nurture culture and study its workings, culture didn’t work.

            It couldn’t work, in this place, because all the things that I wanted to talk about—all those tokens of quotidian sociability that had opened so many doors and hearts for me—all those occasions for chat, from Tristram Shandy to Roseanne, from Barnett Newman to Baby Face—BELONGED to someone. But not to everyone. All the treasures of culture were divvied up and owned by professors, as certainly as millionaires own the beach-fronts of Maine. So, even though, in the course of a normal day, I might chat with a lady in the check-out line about Roseanne, might discuss the Lakers’ chances with some guy at the blackjack table, might schmooze on the phone with Christopher Knight about Karen Carson’s new paintings, and maybe even dish with Karen herself about an all-male performance of Swan Lake, there was no hope of my having a casual conversation with an English professor about what a cool book Tristram Shandy was.

            Because, in this place, books and paintings and music were not ‘cool stuff.’ In society, these objects were occasions for gossip—for the commerce of opinion where there is no truth—an even more dangerous proposition—although my colleagues, being masters, had little choice but to behave masterfully. Exempted by their status from the whims of affection and the commerce of opinion, they could only mark territory from the podium, with footnotes, and speak in the language of authority about things they did not love…

            — Dave Hickey, “Unbreak My Heart”

          5. skippy

            @From Mexico…

            As the link provided illuminates the neoliberal labor theory coming form this school, a neoliberal bubble with technocratic faculty. This neoliberal thunkit is already hard at work in America, via mobs like below.

            The Labor Market Information (LMI) Institute advances the art and science of LMI development and use through a comprehensive national training program and by fostering communication between analysts and data users across the country.


            Journal of Applied Research in Economic Development

            Just one big neoliberal global thinktankistan.


            Skippy… all myopic Robert McNamara clones… barf~~~

      2. curlydan

        Dpiherio: I like your theory…basically the same one that’s been rumbling around in my head. They were handling these guys, probably looking to entrap them like other screw-ups they’ve nailed, then lost them.

        1. allcoppedout

          Always thought the humanities a sham – partly because Bildung did little to inoculate the Germans. Science does a fairly good job of humanising people. The main problems with the humanities concern its literature being no good and people in the area can’t understand numbers other than in counting. Ideally, everyone should study science properly – that would give us only 6% GOP supporters. The rest is unreliable.

          Descartes was a master of not getting out of bed before lunch and Newton a failed sheep-minder. When Janeway could get her crew halfway home in Voyager she declines to do the decent thing with her chastity on account of reading the humanities and discovers the whole shebang of human arty-humanism rejected as an exchange for the alien travel machine that could have been bought with a bit of fake sex. I won’t mourn the humanities and refuse, as a scientist, irony!

          1. anon y'mouse

            this is an example of the mental sickness that tends to infect people who brandish the word ‘scientist’ the way a Spanish cardinal brandished his authority from Torquemada. isn’t it another one of those examples of things that can’t be quantified having “no” value? you are the problem.

            humanities are for humans, as is science and most other knowledge (even religious, whether you do or don’t believe). everything else is for machines and computers.

            making everyone a well-trained computer won’t rectify anything, except make the more well paid among you less-well paid.

          2. Yves Smith Post author

            I could not disagree with your more.

            I majored in the humanities. Dunno if still true, but back then, you could major in anything if it was not a gut major (as in getting good grades meant you’d had to work for them) and get into a good law school if you had good grades and a good LSAT.

            I learned to do close and exacting readings of text. You learn to parse how the author is achieving his effect and how he is using images/tropes/beliefs of his day in doing that. I also learned the equivalent of hand-eye coordination as a writer, how to make a sentence make what I wanted it to say. Everyone in my sophomore tutorial (elite humanities major) would get papers back where each of our two tutors had written MORE in comments on the paper than we had written. Depressing as hell, but forces you to be exact and clear.

            And my father, who had a master’s degree in engineering, was OK with that. He was very hands off but he did forbid me to major in economics and sociology: “They won’t teach you how to write and they won’t teach you how to think.”

          3. nobody


            The humanities education you were fortunate to receive is, at least for the most part, no longer available in the US.

            What you’d most likely get nowadays would be slabs of turgid theory, written in nearly unreadable prose, which is what you’d be expected to reproduce.

            Though frequently presenting itself as ‘radical critique’, the humanities in their present form actually reinforce and supplement, I think, the contemporary neoliberal regime.

            There is a lot of work to be done, and at every level. I’m tempted to say, of the humanities, that that which is falling you should also push. (Nietzsche)

            One thing I would have really liked to see happen, when Occupy sprung up, is to go beyond the ‘teach-in’ to teaching circles in public spaces for various subjects, the humanities in particular, reviving and enacting the sort and quality of teaching you were privileged to receive (though in a more horizontal style).

      3. Brick

        @ diptherio

        Well back in the last century NATO at least got their hands dirty themselves:

        The Oktoberfest bombing is being investigated again the bomber died in the blast of what was probably an attempted FFO and therefore somewhat gladioesque:

        There are even claims (dubious though) that the BND was involved. BND being also the provider of curveball (Iraq WMD “witness”).

        Luxemburg probably bombed itself to increase police financing(sorry german link):

      4. Crazy Horse

        Speaking of assassinations and Orwellian thought control, I still find it almost beyond belief that nearly everybody in the USA accepts the official government Bin Laden story. The whole idea that the body of the world’s most wanted terrorist had to be spirited away in the middle of the night, fitted with concrete boots, and disposed of at sea so nobody could view it is so incredible that it is impossible to conceive of any reason for doing so except one. The only rational explanation is that the body was not that of Bin Laden.

        That does go a long way to explaining how the person shown in government scare videos grew progressively younger over the years. And why the real Bin Laden was reportedly treated in a CIA hospital for kidney failure as late as the spring of 2001 as a reward for his prior service as a anti-soviet operative and his family’s well known business ties to the Bush dynasty. And was said to have died of natural causes in late 2001 by people who should know, like Benizar Bhutto, Prime Minister of Pakistan.

        Even though the fabricators of the Bin Laden script are proven lairs (WMD’s, centrifuge tubes, Sadam’s involvement in the World Trade center bombing to name a few) people much prefer to believe anything as long as it is presented in technicolor sound bites and requires no thought.

    3. petridish

      “Terrorist activity”????

      You mean like that terrorist Eliot Spitzer who was trying to use his position and authority as Attorney General and Governor of New York State to clamp down on predatory mortgage lending a few years back? And then, just by “coincidence,” they find out that he was making dates with a high priced hooker and he’s forced to resign and the lawlessness continues unimpeded? You mean terrorists like that?

      “Five years ago Tuesday, the Governor who made his name battling corruption resigned in disgrace, days after his dalliances in a high-priced hooker ring became public knowledge.”

      Chris, if you think this is about catching terrorists who hate us for our freedom to enjoy marathons, you need to get out more.

      PS. Greenwald is just asking for trouble. It seems he has his eye on the cage right next to Bradley Manning.

      1. curlydan

        FWIW, Jeremy Scahill was told by a military official that he’d be on “thin ice” if he kept going with his “Dirty Wars” project

        1. Chris Engel

          Scahill also said in his interview with the guy from FiredogLake that his computer was hacked and a source revealed (in a truly bizarre, Bond-esque manner…).

    4. Lambert Strether

      They’re competent enough when they need to be; that is when there is a sufficient return (as with Eliot Spitzer, as another commenter pointed out). Since the whole system is obviously about more than terrorism, what is it about?

      FWIW, my take is that what Obama (and Bush) have put in place is a system that will allow Nixon- and Rove-style ratf*cking (“dirty tricks”) for ordinary citizens: Hyperlocal ratf*cking, if you will. The nail that sticks up gets hammered down, and all. Not that I’m foily!

      1. M Quinlan

        A re-run of the Spartans and Helots? Murderous apprentice 1%’ers taking out any uppity slaves.
        Definition of uppity; good harvest, good looks, popular, wrong place wrong time.

  2. nobody

    There are times when, if you see something, you actually *should* say something:

    Workers weren’t wearing hard hats.

    They were trying to tear down the building in the dark with sledgehammers and flashlights.

    And union carpenters working nearby said the wall that eventually collapsed wasn’t braced properly.

    The demo was so screwed up, they said, they were literally waiting for the building to collapse.

    And it did, apparently killing six people and hurting 13 others who had to be rescued from the rubble.

    Joe Hauser, a carpenter with Local 845 and a member of the crew working across the street, said he and his co-workers had watched the demolition for days in total disbelief.

    One day there was a guy out there with a sledgehammer, he said. “A f—–g sledgehammer,” one of Hauser’s co-workers echoed, as they stood on a nearby corner watching the chaotic rescue scene unfold.

    “Never in all my years have I ever, ever, ever seen this,” said Steve Cramer, a member of Carpenter’s Local Union 122. “It was just a total disregard for safety. We [predicted] this last week. I can’t believe they allowed the thrift store to be open.”

    Yesterday morning, Hauser said, he decided he had seen enough.

    “I said, ‘That’s it, at lunch I’m going to go over there and say something, I have to, I can’t go with this no more.’ ”


    From the crowd, two women who worked nearby and had been listening to the men talk, shook their heads.

    “So why didn’t you say anything?” one woman asked softly.

    Why didn’t anyone?

    1. skippy

      Gives 3rd world demolition a bad name to draw a parallel.

      skippy… much more respect for their ability. Those were more than likely corner labor w/next zero skills at that site.

      1. nobody

        The “building [is] owned by infamous king of porn and serial slumlord Richard Basciano. The permit was issued to Philadelphia architect Plato Marinakos for Griffin Campbell Construction – led by a demolition boss who in addition to a criminal record, also has a history of violations on other properties he’s worked on.”

        According to their website, Marinakos’s firm “think[s] of how the structure or space you are designing will affect everything around you, of what it is and what it will become. We deliver value because we treat everything we build and everything we design with foresight.” Also, they “are not afraid to take risks because we believe in our ability to learn, adapt and grow.”

        2000 Hamilton Street
        Suite 912
        Philadelphia, PA 19130

        Phone: 610-207-7678
        Email: info@plato-studio

    1. sleepy

      From the article itself, I can’t tell what the difference is. The article states that levees broke and that people were rescued from rooftops.

  3. rjs

    re: fukushima; no one died…let’s wait a couple dozen years & check the incidence of thyroid failures and cancers…and another couple hundred to check for birth defects…it takes four generations for recessive mutations to show up in a large population…

    1. psychohistorian

      The Big Lie technique in action

      Fukushima has 10X payload of Chernoybl, has 3 reactors that have lost containment and has enough plutonium balancing precariously in pools above the damaged reactors to exterminate our species as well as many others.

      If and when they safely remove all that spent fuel in the pools I will start to believe the number of related deaths will be less than all of us.

      Ignorance may be bliss but the truth can be a great motivator. The public is not getting the truth about Fukushima just like many other things.

      I keep wanting aliens to swoop in and save us from ourselves…….

  4. Juneau

    “Do Psychiatrists create the problems they treat?”
    I find this article interesting and fair. For those who may not know, WHO (World Health Organization) uses the ICD 10
    instead of DSM V to classify mental illness. This is the global standard and alternative to DSM V.

    I recently listened to a related talk by a former Soviet Union psychiatrist who felt the US was wrong to avoid the ICD 10 criteria. Sadly, saw potential for abuse here by the powers. He said public discussions like this were the best preventative against absolute worst case scenarios (aka Nazi extermination/eugenics campaigns) as well as lesser abuses by the powers. I see his point.

    1. George Hier

      I look forward to the History Channel special documenting the secret but crucial role psychiatrists played in taking down the Third Reich.

    2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      More often than not, science, in general, not just psychiatry, is ‘solving*’ problems it created in the first place.

      *solving – as any scientific theory is only good for now, to be superseded until another one comes along, it’s not ‘solving’ in the usual sense people are accustomed to with that wording. So, I guess we have a two-fold problem here.

      But as you can’t solve a problem using the same thinking that created it, as that would be insanity.

    3. petridish

      From the article:

      “…the marketing efforts of Big Pharma on TV and elsewhere have a huge influence over which diagnoses become fashionable.”

      And which SYMPTOMS too, I suspect.

      Only two countries on the planet permit “direct to consumer” advertising of drugs and medical devices. They are the US (of course) and New Zealand.

      “It’s a disgusting, dishonorable way to generate sales–but it works. In 2008, the House Commerce Committee found that every $1,000 spent on drug ads produces 24 new patients,1 and a 2003 research report found that prescription rates for drugs promoted with DTC ads were nearly seven times greater than those without such promos.2 Ethics aside, these consumer hustles have proven to be profit bonanzas.”

      Drug companies and medical providers only make money when people are sick, or think they are.

  5. Walter Map

    Humanities Fall From Favor Wall Street Journal.

    So we’ve lost our humanity, and humanity is lost. This is news?

    1. craazyman

      If you want a job working for the governor of North Carolina you have to get a degree in something useful, like NASCAR race management.

      You can also major in government budget cutting or layoff strategies or privatization.

      You can get a PhD in “doing nothing useful” an then get a very high paying job in corporate strategy. You can’t do anything useful in a job like that, all you can do is make PowerPoint slides showing where you’ll fire people and how much money that will save for the next two months that goes right into exeuctive compensation. There’s a job where you use your degree in a constructive way.

      You can go for the whole thing at once and get a combined BA/MBA/PhD in “Destruction and Stupidity”. That will get you a job in the 1% and you can work in the financial sector creating strategic value optimization plans 7 days a week.

      There’s a lot of opportunity out there for young people willing to get with the program and lay aside the basketweaving and home economics majors for something serious.

    2. jrs

      Yes becaue the solution to an economy without enough jobs period, and even less good paying jobs, is for EVERYONE and their brother to try to go into a STEM field, and then even those who do have the aptitude and the interest we find 100 people competing for every such job and the powers that be will still be bringing in the H1Bs. Plus lacking anyone able to do a social analysis (are social sciences to be thrown in the bin with the dreaded humanities?) noone will even know what hit them.

      1. Massinissa

        “Are social sciences to be thrown in the bin with the dreaded humanities?”

        Yes, how did you guess?!

        And I would like to point out that, for whatever reason, History is in the Humanities these days, where it was not a few decades ago. Apparently the capitalist overclass dont like us proles knowing history, not that they know any either.

        1. nobody

          The social sciences, like the humanities, have also committed suicide.

          Bring together a hundred random cell phone owners and figure out how to get them to share their knowledge and observations, and you’ll get a far fuller, truer, more robust, and more sophisticated depiction of American society than you’ll ever get from a hundred social scientists.

          Better yet, just bring together Dave Chappelle, Katt Williams, Roseanne Barr, Russell Peters, Tom Wolfe, and the ghosts of George Carlin and Joe Bageant.

          (Yes I do recognize the gender imbalance in that list. Further suggestions would be most welcome.)

      2. lambert strether

        Stephen King, from the dreaded English Department was by far the largest donor to the University of Maine, until one of our highly overpaid Presidents ticked him off, and then left for UConn to become President there, where he was fired for corruption. Yay!

        * * *

        On STEM, what the corporate types who are in charge of the system want is vocational tranining. What they do not want is any challenges to their existing rental extraction.

        Hence not only the destruction of the humanities, but the assault on science, the demand that science projects fund themselves from private donations, and so on. It’s TINA in academe.

    1. Susan the other

      I never read The Prize, but saw Yergin on a few tv shows (cnbc) pushing his book and talking about Caspian oil. One of his claims back then was that the Caspian oil field was so enormous it dwarfed the rest of the Middle East combined and there was enough oil under and around the Caspian to power the entire world for a century. Big claims. All the talk about the Caspian has since been silenced. Who knows why. But the thought comes to mind that if this massive supply of oil were developed (Iran borders the south end of the Caspian) the price of oil would take a dive. So following bread crumbs … we eventually wend our way through the entire world economic structure from corporations, to currencies, to banking, to fraud, to war. Leaving oil in the ground appears to be the Saudi decision; Iran is probably happy to do so as well. So one explanation for our saber rattling is that we just don’t trust Iran and we want to insure that we have control over all that oil… hence the big elaborate justification building for a war with Iran. Or maybe not.

      1. danb

        When oil hit $147.00 in 2008 Yergin said it would go towards $250.00. It then declined to $38.00 by early 2009 -demand destruction in action. He’s made numerous erroneous predictions. No one who understands peak oil takes him seriously because his predictions are really propaganda; we joke that it’s better to view him as a negative barometer. He’s a historian, by the way, and a figurehead for a company that provides rosy -and consistently inaccurate- predictions about oil. Peak oil hit in 2005; technology has slightly softened the decline but the low-hanging fruit of shale plays is ending. When the cost of extracting “oil” exceeds what people can pay for it, the connection between energy, finance and economy will become clear.

    1. nobody

      Jesse also sez:

      “The world is sorting out the global currency regime… For the short term, expect the unexpected… There are big changes underway, enormous changes that will impact the world and be talked about and discussed for the next few hundred years. So do not be disappointed if you do not quite understand them. Most of the people confidently speaking about them do not understand them either. Or in all too many cases, they understand what is happening, but their paychecks depend on their saying something else. And quite a few are blinded by greed, fear, and a false sense of who they really are. More people are starting to understand than the media lets on.”

      I suspect that he is right.

      1. optimader

        I love Jesse’s blog, but I think he is backhandedly over optimistic the “the world” is sorting anything out. IMO just the opposite, nothing is being “sorted”. The closest model for the world currency regime(s) as I perceive it is competing nested control loops with untuned proportional, integral and derivative bands operating to reach mutually independent outcomes.

        The simple metaphor is a huge ship with (n) independent helms each w/with an autopilot engaged controlling its own engine and rudder of varying size, and each with a committee of drunk helmsman setting unrelated waypoints through the shoal… So yes, in a fashion it all gets “sorted” but IMO probably w/an unintended outcome.

        maybe I shouldnt read this stuff til after my first 0.5l bierstein of coffee?

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          Maybe the guy (or gal) who came up with the PID controller knows how we can get out of our current mess.

          1. optimader

            Beefy,, as the “data” comes in, maybe the higher level conclusion is that “rational control” (central bank manipulation) is mostly doomed when applied to an “irrational system” (human economic sentiment).

            Maybe the same reason why a Quant hedge fund does well until it doesn’t, and explodes creating more liability than any cumulative equity acquired? Hat tip: Taleb

        2. nobody


          That’s not how I read “sorting out,” though perhaps I am misread him here by reading this recent post through stuff like this:

          “To those who say to hell with it, to hell with thinking, to hell with complexity, to hell with others, I say, be careful of the madness which you seek to unleash, because it will come back to consume you and your children, as it has done so many times before, and will do so inevitably again.

          This is what I believe is happening now based on a careful reading of history.

          This is not a prediction. This is a warning for a generation that is being prepared to accept the unthinkable on a much wider scale than they might imagine in their worst nightmares: torture, murder, ethnic cleansing, and repression. And what is most frightening of all is that they think they are immune to it, because they are so different, so special, so exceptional. And so they become willfully blind, and in their blindness, may become beasts.

          1. optimader

            I admire Jesse’s thought process as well. Sorting implys (to me ) some cognitive process. Maybe I misinterpret the use of the word? I perceive nothing but delayed and “out of control” response from the guys w/ the hands on the economic knobs that are “so smart” that they are idiots. I surmise at the end of the day, Jesse has a similar perception?

  6. from Mexico

    @ “Bradley Manning Is Guilty of ‘Aiding the Enemy’ — If the Enemy Is Democracy”

    Norman Solomon writes:

    In effect, for top managers of the warfare state, “the enemy” is democracy….

    Blaming the humanist PFC messenger for “aiding the enemy” is an exercise in self-exculpation by an administration that cannot face up to its own vast war crimes.


    The Obama and army propagandists have spent the last three years and untold barrels of ink casting Manning as an unstable, deranged and vengeful young gay man who did what he did out of spite, egocentricism and egotism. After Adrian Lamo’s testimony to the court Tuesday morning, however, that portrayal of Manning lay in shambles. Lamo’s testimony revealed a highly principled young man who did what he did because of his conscience. The transcript of Lamo’s testimony can be found here:

    I have followed the arguments of the anti-Manning faithful on LGBT publications very closely, and what their argument essentially boils down to is this: When you enter the military, check your humanity and your morality in at the door.

    There’s nothing new about this notion.

    For those who like art, there’s an outstanding German move, Napola, that explores the theme in great detail.

    One of the subplots of Napola involves a 16 year-old boy, Albrecht Stein, who is sent to one of the Führer’s elite military schools, Napola, by his father. His father 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 very good at sports, which greatly disappoints his father. His father wants to transform him into a ruthless, merciless, cold-blooded killer type 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 and “elite” militarism, 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.”

    Stein reminds me of Manning. And like Manning, he suffered devastating personal consequences for following his conscience and defying “elite” militarism.

    Stein also reminds me of 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 Wikileaks). In a video interview, here’s what McCord had to say:

    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.”

    The LGBT anti-Manning brigade and its neocon cohort need to learn something that the Nazis never did. And that is that even with the extreme methods of indoctrination, coercion and violence available to them, the Nazis’ program to strip people of their consciences was never completely successful.

    1. Jessica

      “The LGBT anti-Manning brigade”
      Astroturf corporate sellouts
      Everyone LGBT I know would be happy to see Manning get the Nobel Peace Prize. Hell, Norway could take back the one they gave to Manning’s head persecutor and give it to Manning instead.

      “PS. Greenwald is just asking for trouble.”
      He is doing what a citizen in a democracy should do. That it may endanger him is a measure of how far things have sunk.

    2. optimader

      …When you enter the military, check your humanity and your morality in at the door…

      In more cases than you wish to consider, neither is necessary. It’s the sham meme of the “best and brightest”

      Back to Jesse, he did a couple illuminating pieces on his blog abt psychopaths/sociopaths amongst us in the private sector, focusing on how they work their way through the corporate foodchain. Now take away the nuisance of projecting civilized behavior and endorse them w/efficient weapons and “rules of engagement” to parse.

      Unfortunately longterm strategically muddled Imperial projection corrupts the core mission of the military. This is nothing new.
      As the unending mission drags out, and requires fresh meat, the center of gravity of our military are opportunistically harvested from smalltown America using sophisticated recruitment techniques to aggregate those that don’t have much going for them (File under: Spike Lee, paid propagandist).
      Recruits are sold the notion of being a part of a well financed “gang”, with all the classical accoutrements: alluring resources, exotic adventure, instant (high time preference) respect and an instant peer group while wrapping it all up in a flag to close the deal w/ the last stragglers. Watch ANY National Guard commercial for a slice of the propaganda.

      The recruitment pool invariably filters to:
      Those that find what they are exposed to as imperial troops unconscionable; (file under: G Orwell’s progressive cognitive dissonance during his tenure in the colonial police; “Shooting an Elephant” )

      Those that find it acceptable because it is a venue for the opportunity to advance in life and/or the notion of “service” justifies any ordered behavior;

      Finally, those that take great satisfaction and comfort in the “process”. I suspect they are the bulk renderings that work up or at least persist in the military foodchain.

      1. from Mexico

        The best description that I have found of Barak Obama and what he is trying to achieve with the military is from Andrew Lobaczewski’s Political Ponerology:

        [A]n extensive and active indoctrination system is built, with a suitably refurbished ideology constituting the vehicle or Trojan horse for the purpose of pathologizing the thought processes of individuals and society. The goal — forcing human minds to incorporate pathological experiential methods and thought-patterns, and consequently accepting such rule — is never openly admitted. This goal is conditioned by pathological egotism, and the possiblity of accomplishing it strikes the pathocrats as not only indispensable, but feasible. Thousands of activists must therefore participate in this work. However, time and experience confirm what a psychologist may have long foreseen: the entire effort produces results so very limited that it is reminiscent of the labors of Sisypus. It only results in producing a genral stifling of intellectual development and deep-rooted protest against affront-mongering “hypocrisy.” The authors and executors of this program are incapable of understanding that the decisive factor making their work difficult is the fundamental nature of normal human beings — the majority.

        The entire sytem of force, terror, and forced indoctrination, or, rather pathologization, thus proves effectively unfeasible, which causes the pathocrats no small measure of surprise. Reality places a question mark on thier conviction that such methods can change people in such fundamental ways so that they can eventually recognize this pathocratic kind of government as a “normal state.”

        1. optimader

          Good word, Ponerology.

          BHO is an enigma to me relative to his motivations Why?
          The strategy w/ the financial sector, I can understand that. He is not a creative thinker who is professionally immersed in legal parsing. Walking into an unprecedented financial sector implosion, that he clearly did not grasp, completely out of his professional depth, his instinct was pursue an incremental, uninspired strategy while taking advise from the usual suspects –allow it to be absorbed by inflation and GDP. Of course that is not what happened, but I understand it to be consistent w/ how he thinks.

          But why the over the top embrace of the “perpetual war is peace” imperial force projection and the opaque organs of domestic State security? There is the case that no POTUS will ever surrender power unilaterally, but BHO is doubling down on the apparatchik Bush put in motion.
          No root cause analysis on any level is apparent.

  7. Susan the other

    TripleCrisis; the Telegraph; Wolf Richter, etc. Debt levels at the bubble in the emerging markets. Housing beginning to collapse. Too much money chasing fewer returns – 7 trillion last year alone. The debt cycle is exhausted. The world is on the brink of deflation. Trade can’t keep up. The underlying fundamentals of the entire world look like Japan – “deliriously inefficient and highly subsidized…” Isn’t it time to rethink productivity?

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      When I think of productivity, I think of how productive the world is at delivery wealth equality.

  8. mk

    “Japan’s radiation disaster toll: none dead, none sick The Age.”
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~ hard to believe, several headlines on report increase in thyroid cancer … also, wait until kids start having kids

    i’ve seen reports that gov’t. is covering up reports of babies born with defects, etc.

    1. optimader


      There is no safe dose of ionizing radiation, period, full stop.
      The headcount in a population succumbing immediately to acute radiation poisoning IS NOT a metric for the future mortality of population subject to a higher chronic exposure to ionizing radiation. Higher rates of cancer, chronic illness and forthcoming issues related to genetic damage will take a generation or three to be manifested.

      Simplistically stated the “acceptable levels of radiation” propaganda is sold w/ the suggestion that low baquerel radiation risk goes to zero w/ the inverse proportionality of intensity w/ distance. OK that’s fine as far as it goes. For example, even a sphere of plutonium, you can hold it in your hand if you dare. Where the inverse square law applied to dosimetery bumps into real world issues in fuckyoushima is the circumstance of a reactor puking out fuel rods as a finely divided aerosol. Take even a low level alpha emitter speck of dust, inhale into an unfortunate lung alveoli and the distance part of the inverse square law goes to zero and that unlucky recipient is deadman walking.

      This is an incredibly toxic mess that is not being candidly addressed because for all practical purposes it cannot be remediated.

  9. b2020

    Re: Verizon Total Meta-Awareness

    Greenwald is missing a few aspects.
    There was one clear indicator that Obeyme had every intention of extending Bush’s known-to-be-known and known-to-be-unknown illegal activities (disclosed to Lichtblau vs. the still unknown Ashcroft-sickbed). That was his lie, and vote, regarding the (unconstitutionally retroactive) Telecom “amnesty” bill. It covers him as well as the telecoms.

    Further, it needs to be stated more clearly that the FISA-courts “rubber-stomping” of violation and law-breaking is now exceeding any mandate it was given.

    It will also be interesting to see when the Obeyme DOJ and his Beholder proceed to “vigorously” investigate the leak of this secret court order.

    Finally, I don’t think that Wyden and Udall deserve anything but criticism for their hypocritical posturing. Mike Gavel these creatures ain’t, let alone Bradley Manning. Who, if not a US Senator facing nothing worse than “censure” and possible loss of incumbency, can cut through the bullshit and expose an ongoing criminal act? It is the height of idiocy to CYA by criticizing bogus secrecy in a secretive manner. It’s just a notch above the Torture Gang of Eight writing secret letters to themselves. With representatives like that, no republic can sustain.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Our senators average 60 years of age.

      Why do we torture our seniors like this? Shouldn’t they be home enjoying their sunset years?

        1. diane

          oops, in concentrating on older age, I notice I had implied Pelosi was a Senator, versus a House member.

    2. Lambert Strether

      Wyden and Udall should have blown the gaff on the floor of the Senate and stayed there; we would have brought them cots and food… Maybe not though. Article I Section 6:

      [The Senators and Representatives] shall in all Cases, except Treason, Felony and Breach of the Peace, be privileged from Arrest during their Attendance at the Session of their respective Houses, and in going to and returning from the same; and for any Speech or Debate in either House, they shall not be questioned in any other Place.

      But I’m wondering if, when the Congress Critters drafted the Patriot Act, they had the speech and debate clause in mind when they determined what was a felony.

  10. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Roman seawater concrete…carbon emissions..

    I don’t know much about Romans and their seawater concrete, other than I like their Samian, or rather, Terra Sigillata (the key to memorize that is to think using Sigillata bowl for your latte) pottery and our regular concrete, for more highway/bridge infrastructure projects, emits lots of carbon.

    I think the secret, like going to the mountaintop to ask the master the secret to happiness (love one another – you didn’t have to climb all the way for that), is to just consume less.

    Just say NO…to consumption.

    That’s too easy. So, we busy ourselves with Roman seawater concrete.

    1. anon y'mouse

      perhaps we need to busy ourselves with the old methods, which have stood the test of time, instead of reinventing our environment through the planned obsolescence of buildings every 2–30-50 years.

      to live in a building 100 years old or more should not just be for the likes of the trustafarians shown on This Old House. to live in old buildings and repair them, to have middle-aged cobblestones and roman aqueducts still in serviceable condition is the height of anti-resource consumption and sprawl.

      now, if we could manage to make it obvious that the costs of rebuilding everything all the time for each new generation is unsustainable, coupled with the idea that if that infrastructure supports no more than _x_ number of people (so why continue to breed beyond that point? it just requires more resources) then we might be getting somewhere.

      quality in buildings being reserved for only the upper echelons is an expression of the mentality that they are the only ones worth saving. the kind of throwaway shit that most of us can afford we KNOW is no good, but some of us need shoes and clothing and plastic lawn chairs to service our behinds and SOME kind of siding to put on the side of our houses.

      if we could all afford the craftsmanship of Granny’s rocking chair, we would probably get it. things have been deliberately dumbed down and de-qualitied to the point where it will all be guaranteed to be in the landfill in less than a decade.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        I like shoes at $100/pair that will last 5 years over shoes at $40/pair that will last less than a year.

        I don’t care if that means inflation with the way they calculate it.

        1. anon y'mouse

          surely you are familiar with Terry Pratchett on that issue.

          if a person could actually squeeze out $100 for the good shoes when they need them, then this would be no problem. but can they justify it when food just increased in price and little Sally has been bumped off school lunches?

          the problem is that quality itself has “inflated” beyond the typical person’s ability to pay for it.

          although I concede the neverending propaganda of “this year’s hemline height/pantsleg cut is better than last years” brainwashing stuff does seem to work.

          perhaps the answer in clothing is just banana leaves & sisal? heck, if we get bored of it that quickly…

  11. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Bilderberg group, no conspiracy, just the most influential group in the world…

    The best place to hide a secret is to put it out in the open.

    I think being the most influential (small) group of people is not a secret conspiracy, but an open conspiracy.

    So, yes, it’s a conspiracy.

  12. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    If I call my phone company to complain about phone records being turned over to Big ‘unlimited budget’ Brother, will that very act be secretly recorded, tracked and stored somewhere forever?

    Maybe it’s better to remain silent and just pay my phone bills on time.

    Heaven forbid I ruin my FICA score.

    It will ruin my only chance at debt slavery.

  13. Yonatan

    “U.S. Sinks Nails in Iranian Economic Coffin”

    So Iran still has the oil, and someone else still has the dollars. Hmmm, now which side of that deal would I want to be on?

    1. optimader

      “So Iran still has the oil…” and natural gas and natural gas supply contracts..

  14. AbyNormal

    Your tax dollars at work for Walmart…

    Walmart wages are so low that many of its workers rely on food stamps and other government aid programs to fulfill their basic needs, a reality that could cost taxpayers as much as $900,000 at just one Walmart Supercenter in Wisconsin, according to a study released by Congressional Democrats on Thursday.

    Though the study assumes that most workers who qualify for the public assistance programs do take advantage of them, it injects a potent data point into a national debate about the minimum wage at a time when many Walmart and fast food workers are mounting strikes in pursuit of higher wages.

    The study uses Medicaid data released in Wisconsin to piece together the annual cost to taxpayers for providing a host of social safety net programs, including food stamps and publicly subsidized health care, to workers at one Supercenter in the state.

    According to the report, Walmart had more workers enrolled in the state’s public health care program in the last quarter of last year than any other employer, with 3,216 people enrolled. When the dependents of those workers were factored in, the number of enrollees came to 9,207.

    “When low wages leave Walmart workers unable to afford the necessities of life, taxpayers pick up the tab,” the report says.

    After accounting for the total number of Walmart stores and employees across the state and the per-person costs of BadgerCare, as the state’s health care program is known, the report’s authors estimated that the cost of publicly funded health care comes to $251,706 per year for a 300-employee Supercenter.

    The authors then added up the projected costs of other public-assistance programs available to families on BadgerCare, such as reduced-price school meals, Section 8 housing assistance, the earned income tax credit and energy assistance. Assuming all those workers avail themselves of those additional programs — granted, an unlikely scenario — the report extrapolates that the final tab would top $900,000.

    In response to the report, Walmart spokeswoman Brooke Buchanan said the company was proud of the opportunities it provides for employees.
    In my world, people are always plotting. You have no idea of all the crimes people in business commit every day. Like it was nothing. Or there’s a set of special rules for them. Remember when Bush made that whole speech about ‘corporate ethics’ last year? What a fraud. You think stuff like Enron or WorldCom is an aberration? It’s only the tip. Business is a religion. Probably the only one practiced all over the world.”
    Andrew Vachss,Down Here (boy he wasn’t kidding)

  15. LucyLulu

    Breaking News

    “The National Security Agency and the FBI are tapping directly into the central servers of nine leading U.S. Internet companies, extracting audio and video chats, photographs, e-mails, documents, and connection logs that enable analysts to track one target or trace a whole network of associates, according to a top-secret document obtained by The Washington Post.

    The program, code-named PRISM, has not been made public until now. It may be the first of its kind. The NSA prides itself on stealing secrets and breaking codes, and it is accustomed to corporate partnerships that help it divert data traffic or sidestep barriers. But there has never been a Google or Facebook before, and it is unlikely that there are richer troves of valuable intelligence than the ones in Silicon Valley.

    Equally unusual is the way the NSA extracts what it wants, according to the document: “Collection directly from the servers of these U.S. Service Providers: Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Facebook, PalTalk, AOL, Skype, YouTube, Apple.”

    Story broken by Washington Post:

    1. Crazy Horse

      Lucy, we all have to be crazy to post on this forum. That is why its best to start the Ghost Dance now to use its power to short circuit the Universal Registry.

      Facebook, the place where the sheeple go to voluntarily surrender to the Fleecer.

      1. LucyLulu

        Nawwww, they’re only interested in Yves and Lambert. Especially Yves, writing under an exotic parlay-voo alias. Can’t you just picture her in one of those old Bogart movies?

  16. JTFaraday

    re: Humanities Fall From Favor, Wall Street Journal. :-(

    I know, I know. I can’t do anything right. :-(

    But since this is the WSJ, shouldn’t they be telling us to buy the dips?

    1. AbyNormal

      WSJ even stole their Motto:

      Most times, it’s just a lot easier not to let the world know what’s wrong.
      Palahniuk, Invisible Monsters

  17. John Carpenter

    Why is the view that compliments like, your breasts are beautiful, is @quot; sexual harassment@quot; being imposed on us by the @quot; womens movement @quot; for? Why does the government tell us what are rights are like we are stupid? When in reality we should not need Bush,Reagan etc. telling us what our freedoms are. Our rights we had because God gave them to us, why we would want to our government telling us what we already know is beyond me. Destroying our woods should have been illegal behind our house. Obama and our government should no be imposing irreligion on people which is what socalled sexual irritation is the mistaken belief that it bothers me when he told me, my cleavage is pretty. Our government should not have allowed people to over-pollute our environemt otherwise we would not be having problems with the environment and we would not need environmentalists. Man has replaced God with the almighty dollar. God should have still been in our country as God and not the dollar to profane even the sabbath. Women should have respect for men who compliment their bosoms,cleavage,rears,etc.

    1. AbyNormal

      btw if im missing the sarc here i’ll go get diane…she’ll chase your tail back into your lost woods ‘ )

      1. diane


        You’re brave Aby, I didn’t want touch that comment with a twenty foot pole (afeared, I might get smitten by a sword for using four letter words).


  18. dSquib

    Re: psychiatry I’ve never seen a particularly convincing defence of the charge that psychiatric equilibrium would leave history unmoved, that anyone who ever did anything important would be labelled “aberrant” and therefore unhealthy to themselves and society. Is someone mentally unbalanced if they leak important information to the public if they know it is likely they will be imprisoned? And what of MLK, resistance fighters, suffragists and so on?

    The enforcement of societal norms does not mean they do not change, only that the powerful and wealthy can change them. If society is sick or the state repressive, aberrant behaviour is essential!

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