Links 7/31/13

Woolly mammoth DNA may lead to a resurrection of the ancient beast Guardian

Female friendships boost bird mating BBC

Video of Violent, Rioting Surfers Shows White Culture of Lawlessness Gawker (Lambert)

Video shows petcoke dust cloud hitting Windsor’s riverfront Windsor Star (frosty zoom)

Now That It’s in the Broadband Game, Google Flip-Flops on Network Neutrality Wired. Running your own e-mail server (as in on your premises) is the only way to get Fourth Amendment protection for your e-mails (under the law, which of course is not the same as in practice)

MIT Releases Its Own Swartz Investigation After Stalling Release of Secret Service’s Marcy Wheeler

‘Unethical’: Greek Politician Spars with German Paper Der Spiegel

Word and action show China’s commitment to slow MacroBusiness

In Europe, the case for… optimism? FT Alphaville

BoE helped Nazis to sell plundered gold Telegraph

What has been happening in Egypt Sic Semper Tyrannis (Chuck L)

Manning verdict:

The Bradley Manning verdict is still bad news for the press Guardian

Manning’s conviction seen as making prosecution of WikiLeaks’ Assange likely Washington Post

Owen Jones: Cleared of aiding the enemy, Bradley Manning still faces a lifetime in jail Independent (Chuck L)

Daniel Ellsberg reaction to Bradley Manning trial Corrente

Big Brother is Watching You Watch:

Ron Wyden: Intel violations ‘troubling’ Politico. Elicited “WOW” from Greenwald on Twitter.

Snowden’s father ‘approached by FBI’ BBC. More evidence the father is a loose cannon.

If Snowden Came Home, Would a Jury Convict? let’s fix this country (martha r)

Wikileaks Model Vindicated By Obama Administration Attacks On Press DSWright, Firedoglake

What Kind of ‘Justice System’ Refuses to Test DNA Evidence? Altantic

When should we aid Detroit? Felix Salmon

PG&E’s top boss acknowledges utility’s guilt in San Bruno blast but balks at proposed penalty Contra Coastal Times (Lambert). Is PG&E an evil company? Weren’t they the bad guys in Erin Brockovich?

NYC Soda Ban Struck Down Again, This Time By Appeals Court Huffington Post (Carol B)

Recession Forever? 10 Reasons American Workers Are Screwed Alternet

Underemployment as a challenge to orthodox economics Pieria

Tourre trial told of ‘land of make believe’ Financial Time. Pelligrini (Paulson employee and architect of his CDO strategy) unquestionably lied. And jury nodding off. Not looking good for the SEC.

Buy-to-Rent Players Plan Bond Wall Street Journal. Can they really find enough fools for this? There’s virtually no private label MBS market and this will be an order of magnitude dodgier.

The next Federal Reserve chair shouldn’t be Wall Street’s servant Guardian

Monetarists see danger from ‘Summers Fed Telegraph

The Fed Deception Counterpunch (Carol B)

The Maddening of America Project Syndicate (Lambert)

Antidote du jour:


And a bonus (Paul Kedrosky, hat tip Robert M): Fox Steals Cell Phone, Sends Text in Language of the Foxes GeekoSystem

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


  1. Jim Haygood

    From an NYT article about marginal unbanked consumers:

    While many Americans have at least a vague idea that their credit report is crucial when applying for a loan, few realize that a parallel report is used for bank accounts.

    The largest database, founded in the 1970s, is run by ChexSystems, a subsidiary of FIS. Subscribers — Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Citibank and Wells Fargo among them — “regularly contribute information on mishandled checking and savings accounts,” ChexSystems says on its Web site.

    Mistakes like a bounced check or a small overdraft have effectively blacklisted more than a million low-income Americans from the mainstream financial system for as long as seven years as a result of [these] little-known private databases that are used by the nation’s major banks.

    One of the examples cited in the article is someone who was hit with overdraft fees (probably before banks started offering an opt-out option) and was delinquent in paying them.

    It sounds like the Chex database is being used not so much to detect fraud (its original alleged purpose), but simply to blacklist low average balance, low fee-generating depositors as ‘unprofitable’ — an unpardonable sin in TBTF land. Let them tote coin purses!

  2. timalex

    Rioting Surfers

    Give me a break. Now some black guy is writing articles about rioting white surfers and the shame of white parents. What a hypocrite. What America needs now many times more white Americans rioting on behalf of the country.

    Blacks have been doing it without recourse for years.

    1. Massinissa

      “rioting on behalf of the country”

      A bunch of surfers tearing up property is “on behalf of the country”?

      “rioting without recourse for years”

      Right because the rodney king riots totally happened a few years ago right? Stop bitching about something that happened over two decades ago.

    2. PWC, Raleigh

      the Gawker piece was a satire of opinions typically penned following riots by black youths. just change “white” to “black” and adjust other hackneyed “cultural” details accordingly

    3. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      It’s more like the Homo Not-So-Sapiens Not-So-Sapiens’ culture of lawlessness – it is lawless when that we take more than what is necessary from Nature without gratitude.

      And now, we are just going forth and multiplying on foul air (but with more nitrogen and CO2 on the way though), little water and GM foods.

    4. Murky

      “Now some black guy is writing articles about rioting white surfers…”

      Agree that the author of this article was not balanced on the subject of race. But to point a finger at blacks being as bad or worse just entangles us in an insoluble racial debate. A better takeaway is one of the comments posted below the article, which links to some excellent journalism from the Orange County Register newspaper. It’s a 5 part series exploring racist gangs and a white supremacy movement within Orange county.

      1. Binky Bear

        WE all know how those “white” people are (or do we call them people of whiteness now? Uncoloured people?)
        Gun crazy, paranoid, utterly conflicted Puritanical crazies who shout loudly about what other people are doing that might be pleasurable or enjoyable, how bad it is that they are doing it, and how sorry they are that they tried it back when they were sinners? And are secretly doing it now? Ted Haggard? Mark Sanford? David “Diapers” Vitter?
        Like when they say violence is the realm of melanin enabled people and how bad it is while they operate a system based on constant violence and oppression? Sick.
        We definitely need some kind of final answer to the whitey problem. Something bred into their very genetic code makes them prone to irrationality, violence, rape and mayhem.

        Joking a little.

        1. Murky

          Most of the time I avoid issues of race when blabbing online. Hot button issue, catalyst for flame wars. But occasionally people post with clarity on this topic. You are plenty clear about upending racial stereotypes. But beyond that I can only guest at your point. Maybe it’s this: That most articles specifically targeting white racism are, likely as not, themselves tinged with racism? Choking on bad journalism are you?

          Me, I grew up in Orange County several decades ago, and so I have interest in how the place is evolving.

  3. craazyman

    Is the Fed Chair someplace Wall Street sits? Where it is by the way and is it made of wood or a toilet seat? Faaaaak.

    I saw a few black dudes in the surfer riot. They probably started it. Bwaaaaak. When enough people have tans, you can’t tell who’se black or white unless you see the hair and there’s a lot of hats in that video. I’d say it’s all innuencdo at this point.

    What’s up with Europe? Every article on this blog said the place would fall apart in 2012 and somehow it’s still there. Is it time to buy yet? We need to make some money fast and why else read about central banking if it you can’t monetize it. Lately it’s been reverse monetization. you read and then you lose money cause what you read was misleading.

    That would be weird, to see a Wolly mammoth in the woods. How could you tell it from a moose or a buffalo or some spiritual manifestation like the Loch Ness Moonster? most folks wouldn’t know until they got home and read about it in the local paper. I wouldn’t.

    I wouldn’t convict Edward Snowden of jaywalking. Why would any jury? Bring him home and put him on the lecture circuit. He can teach constitutional law at Hah-vaahd to “senior Administration officials” whoever they might be.

    What is there to investigate about Aaron Swartz? MIT needs to work with proactive prosecutors and put everybody in America in jail except the folks who pay huge amounts of tuition, preferably in cash to senior executives at the institution of higher learning. Money talks and when kids act up you need to run them over until they bleed. it’s like Abraham in the Bible. If you don’t do God’s will you won’t be a righteous law abiding moron.

    faaak I feel bad checking the box “confirm you are not a spammer”. I’m like a dog at the fire hydrant. just being honest.

    1. Massinissa

      If he was to be tried for helping the country resist the government, as an honest juror, I would probably need to convict him of that.

      Though in that case he should get a reward, not a punishment.

  4. diptherio

    Re: White Culture of Lawlessness

    Haha! That’s a great article. “Turnabout is fair play,” as the bard once wrote. I wonder how many people reading it will take the author at face value, rather than considering the meta-message: blaming an entire population for the actions of a few f-d up individuals is insulting and ridiculous. Still, I’ll bet that at least half the people reading entirely miss the point (like our commenter above).

    This line, especially, is some excellent comedic writing:

    Whites in America have been out from under their European ancestors’ boot heels for centuries; California specifically outlawed preferences for nonwhites in state hiring and education nearly two decades ago. So being “oppressed” is no longer an excuse for behavior like this. How long must we wait for the white community to get its act together?

    Ha! I love it! And check out the comments:

    Cord Jefferson:

    Just so nobody gets the wrong idea, I should probably say here that my best friend is white.


    He must be one of the good ones.

    Made my morning.

    1. Bill the Psychologist

      I was thinking yesterday, and was reminded today by the mention of the “white culture of lawlessness”, why don’t we write laws to use against the “culture of maleness”.

      That would precisely contain all the other cultures of lawlessness, crime, and any other nasty thing that is done on this earth.

      God should have made the woman first, then he should have stopped while he was ahead.

      And yes, I’m a real guy……with the equipment and “baggage” to prove it.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        It’s probably better to be later than earlier.

        Plants were created before animals, which were created before Adam.

        If being earlier implies superiority, vegetables should rule over animals and you and me.

        1. psychohistorian

          I think vegetables will be here after we eliminate our species for thinking ourselves superior to them.

      2. craazyman

        do those lines work when they let the guys in after Ladies Night happy hour ends?

        they sound a bit sentimental and soft headed, but I bet a few PC cultural studies victims would jump on it after a few cocktails with the girls, and that’s the idea! Just be careful they’re not crazy stalker types.

        whatever makes it happen with a minimum of discussion is the way to go, this isn’t philosophy, after all. You can do that by yourself. :)

      3. hunkerdown

        There is a very real overlap between Western Anglophone cultural tenets and the tenets of what feminists call “rape culture”. Perhaps it’s not just an overlap, but an identity.

    2. Lidia

      Judging by the comment thread here, too many. We already have some sarcasm-challenged, above.

  5. from Mexico

    @ “The Maddening of America”

    All of this suggests that as many as 20% of American adults may be severely mentally ill.


    Comparative epidemiologists have repeatedly noticed something remarkable about these illnesses: only Western countries (or, more precisely, societies with monotheistic traditions) – particularly prosperous Western countries – are subject to prevalence rates of this magnitude. Southeast Asian countries appear to be especially immune to the bane of severe mental illness; in other regions, poverty, or lack of development, seems to offer a protective barrier.

    As I argue in my recent book Mind, Modernity, Madness, the reason for high concentrations of severe mental illness in the developed West lies in the very nature of Western societies. The “virus” of depression and schizophrenia, including their milder forms, is cultural in origin: the embarrassment of choices that these societies offer in terms of self-definition and personal identity leaves many of their members disoriented and adrift.

    The US offers the widest scope for personal self-definition; it also leads the world in judgment-impairing disease. Unless the growing prevalence of serious psychopathology is taken seriously and addressed effectively, it is likely to become the only indicator of American leadership. The rise of China is unrelated to this.

    I wonder though if the “widest scope for personal self-definition” is an illusion. Robert L. Heilbroner argued that it was. As he explains:

    In earlier societies the integration of the individual into the life of the community is clearly seen as arising from feelings of positive affect (family ties, friendship, communal observances, etc.), or under the duress of communal pressure (scorn, ostracism) or coercive authority. Once the transitional pains are past, the integrative mechanism in market society appears to use none of these pressures, and to rest solely on our free engagement with the transactional apparatus of society.

    –ROBERT L. HEILBRONER, Behind the Veil of Economics

    However, Heilbroner believes this to be an illusion:

    For I have gradually come to see the market system as one in which the same underlying processes that assure discipline and order as those of older societies continue to exert their force, although in a manner that escapes our recognition.


    Let us commence with the element of freedom — or rather, since freedom is a social condition and not an individual behavioral property, with the idea of individuation, i.e., the desire or capacity of individuals to seek lifeways other than those imposed on them by the prevailing structure of social interests… [T]here seems no doubt that the life chances of the individual are vastly enlarged by the rise of market society. On the other hand, we must not ignore the constrained behavior that is required to achieve this increase in autonomy… The motives of economic “rationality” that replace those of tradition and command are imperatives, precisely as are the motives they displace. The thrust for individuation in the individual’s social behavior — the expansion of his or her life chances — is accommodated at the cost of newly added constraints on his or her interactive behavior, taken in it entirely.

    1. Carla

      Re: the interview with Daniel Ellsberg about the Manning verdict:

      Daniel Ellsberg not only ceased to be an American hero, but he lost all credibility, when he shilled shamelessly for Obama in the 2012 election.

      It was fear-mongering and it was despicable. Lots of cowardly “Progressives” did it, but Ellsberg joining them was a shock. Who ever thought he would stoop so low?

      1. just me

        Disagree. He wasn’t shamelessly shilling, he was honorably trying to get us to use our vote to avert war with Iran, to vote the lesser of two evils. The alternative was Romney. And he only suggested voting for Obama if you lived in a swing state, and he said clearly that since he lived in nonswingstate California he was NOT voting for Obama himself. He further made himself available to debate and criticism, as here when he debated David Swanson, who urged voting third party. Thing was, in that debate they each exposed the apparently fatal flaw in each other’s argument, as I noted in my comment at the time:

        (fixing my bonehead goof here)

        If you do as Swanson says, vote your principles — if you’re hoping to affect the election results and move the conversation and the Democrats to the left, Ellsberg says look at 2000, it’s been done, Nader did it, and the result killed the nascent third party because it got blamed for the terrible result: Bush.

        If you do as Ellsberg says, vote Romney Obama, hoping to avert war with Iran and other devastations, Swanson says look at history too: We just get a progression of worse and worse lesser-evil elections.

        But these two diametrically opposed friends ended up agreeing on a bigger thing:

        GARRETT: …If in the next four years we do in fact elect Obama – same question – is that enough time to develop a candidate whom we really want, and if not, how much time do you think it will take? Short answer, please.

        SWANSON: It – is – the – wrong – question. We do not want to develop a candidate, a messiah, a savior, or a leader. We want to develop a people’s movement. And I want –

        ELLSBERG: I agree. I agree with that.

        It’s not about the candidate. It’s about us. And I have nothing but thanks and respect for Daniel Ellsberg.

    2. Patricia

      From Mexico: “I wonder though if the “widest scope for personal self-definition” is an illusion.” Greenfeld is stuck in the 70’s, when self-definition was a question more of us could explore. It’s a more pleasant place from which to consider, I suppose.

      She doesn’t mention social atomization, the burden of constant lies, the dissonance caused by the collapse of the Am Dream and no means to do anything about it, lack of attachment to place, the disrespect given to work and workers, the contempt of our gov’t, the narrow kind of personality that is considered approved, the pollution of our water/environment, our culture’s demand for speed combined with constant encouragement of passivity, the absolute crap that is our primary art form (television), the goop we presume to call food. This list is only what occurs to me on this Wed morn. One could write a long paper on each as to how it likely contributes to mental illness.

      She might at least have mentioned that we don’t sleep enough. But no, it’s because: “the embarrassment of choices that these societies offer in terms of self-definition and personal identity leaves many of their members disoriented and adrift.” Oy!

      An altogether shabby post by Liah Greenfeld.

      1. from Mexico

        Your list reminded me of another list that marked the crumbling of a social and economic order (feudalism) and the ruling mythology that had informed it (the scholastic enterprise):

        The new vision of God that rose to prominence in the fourteenth century emphasized divine power and unpredictability rather than divine love and reason, but this new God only made sense because of the tremendous changes in the world itself. The Great Schism, the Hundred Years War, the Black Death, the development of gunpowder, the dire economic circumstances brought on throughout Europe by the advent of the Little Ice Age, and the dislocations wrought by urban development, social mobility, and the Crusades, were all of crucial importance to the formation of the anxiety and insecurity that made the nominalist vision of the world believable.

        –MICHAEL ALLEN GILLESPIE, The Theological Origins of Modernity

        1. Jess

          Hey, Mexico —

          I am amazed at the frequency with which you can quote such a wide range of historians, philosophers, social scientists, etc. You’re obviously either well-educated or well-read on your own. Obviously you’re under no obligation to answer but if you don’t mind me asking, how did you acquire all this knowledge? Was it necessary in your line of work?

          1. from Mexico

            No, it wasn’t part of my work.

            I retired 12 years ago and took to reading. I have a rather large library so keep this stuff at my fingertips.

            1. Emma

              Reading make us smarter, safely opens the world to us, and nurtures us through life.
              I’m with Hemingway who said “There is no friend as loyal as a book.”

        2. Patricia

          I don’t know if you’ll return to this thread, from Mexico, but I too am glad that you spend so much time reading and that you pass some of it along.

          I’ve not read Gillespie. It is a poor god who is merely human projection rather than presenting even greater love, purpose and reason. That kind of god (and there are many, it seems) is always destructive. Not all people in all places, including during the 14th century, found their God to be thus.

    3. spooz

      IMO, more significant than any cultural “virus” as a cause for the high concentration of severe mental illness is the role of psychopharmaceuticals that are plied on those who would be better served with psychotherapy aimed at developing coping strategies. The Patients For Life model is particularly heinous when it targets children whose depression and anxiety may be a side effect of the stimulant medication they are forced to consume. This is just speculation on my part, since Big Pharma doesn’t do long term studies on outcomes, and cherry picks which studies get published to maximize profits. Other countries don’t have the Big Pharma sales pitch that the DSM-5 offers to us.

      1. Kurt Sperry

        “the role of psychopharmaceuticals that are plied on those who would be better served with psychotherapy aimed at developing coping strategies”

        If psychotherapy was critical to mental health we’d necessarily high rates of psychotherapy in cultures and societies with the lowest rates of mental illness. Instead we see little or none.

        1. Tim Mason

          I must have been asleep for a while. The last time this question penetrated my thickening skull, the people in white coats were claiming that cross cultures rates of psychosis and other mental conditions were very similar – a result that was much touted as demonstrating that mental disease was real, and biological rather than cultural in aetiology. However, there were differences in outcomes: people in places where medicine was not available tended to do rather better than people in places where it was. This was mooted to be down to the closer social networks that could take the mad in charge.

          However, on closer examination, it seemed that the critical variable was the degree to which women could be persuaded to take care of the ill. Thus a woman might discover that her newly wed husband was a paranoid schizophrenic: she had little choice but to look after him.

          So is there a difference between Us and Them, other than the very recent freedom – relative in nature – which women have acquired in some places, but which is tardy in its advent in others?

      2. Optimader

        Could it be the most effective pschopharmaceuticals to help assist with “coping” strategies are ones that were made illegal?
        Just putting it out there..

        1. XO

          I wouldn’t doubt that. Especially with pot. I’t really difficult to get someone who is stoned to do something stupid/violent/self-defeating, without questioning it.

          On a related note, there should be free joint dispensers in every prison. Get the inmates to mellow the F out.

        2. spooz

          I agree that weed can be a good short term aid for dealing with stress and depression for adults. It can also become habit forming and perhaps keep some from realizing they are ready to be “normal” again. Those who become daily users and who wish to emerge from the fog usually don’t have much trouble quitting, though it may take a few tries before the intention wins out, from what I have heard. Its certainly a lot easier to quit, and with limited side effects from doing so, than anything Big Pharma has to offer.

          I also think that the benefits from drugs like psilocybin can be very beneficial for those suffering from depression. The spiritual experience it creates can also be helpful for those dealing with the stress of severe chronic disease:

          However, no psychoactive medications should be allowed to have an impact on the developing brains of children, legal or otherwise, imo. There are no studies on long term outcomes and the possibility of harmful side effects that may be irreversible is too great.

          1. Synopticist

            I guy I met once told me this story.
            As a kid and teen he was really nervous around people, and used to stutter all the time. At one point in his early twenties, he took a bunch of magic mushrooms and walked up a mountain in Wales, and when he climbed down again he’d lost his stutter and it never came back.

            On the other hand, I also knew a few guys who became schizophrenic through taking way too many hallucinogens in their teens. Maybe it would have happened anyway, but still.

      3. Ron

        Most Americans believe in Jesus and the story of earths creation by God, not to mention the idea they will live forever and hangout out with friends and relatives of the past after death. The endless discussion of mental illness and exactly who mentally ill never covers religious belief and the behavior it generates.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          It’s interesting to see the following pattern:

          A Hindu nation will stay Hindu, generation after generation.

          A Christian nation will stay Christian, generation after generation.

          A Shinto nation will stay Shinto, generation after generation.

          A Muslim nation will stay Muslim, generation after generation.

          A Jewish nation will stay Jewish, generation after generation.

          If, with each generation, people seek and search, shouldn’t we see at least some exceptions, other than when a nation is conquered and forced to convert.

          1. susan the other

            That is such an interesting question Prime. Because ideas are so fluid and evolve faster than anything on the planet, yet the ideas that form the basis of religion do not change, they are very conservative. Like DNA is very conservative, but the fringes of its molecule are subject to variation. Epigenetics.

          2. hunkerdown

            Because the national religion is part of the informal national identity?

            Because religions aren’t typically enterprises of nation-states, but of peoples?

            Because religions tend to bar or obstruct exits? (e.g. Islam on apostates)

            Because the principle of free exercise also includes beating it into the next generation (sometimes literally)?

            There are probably others.

        2. Lidia

          Indeed! Having recently acquired a health issue, I’ve been on forums dealing with symptoms and treatments. All of them are infested with the “prayerful”.

          One woman “praised God” because she got to have an important test immediately, whereas other sufferers had to wait a week or two for the test. I asked whether she really thought that a deity *intended* for those *other* women to get substandard care, rather than it just being an issue of politics, economics, greed or what-have-you.

          The moderators deleted my post! It’s A-Ok for them to be offensive: implying that the more unlucky sufferers are not those smiled upon by their fictional entity. But GOD FORBID any of them should be offended by any push-back.

          The censorship was really creepy. As the “godly” contingent seems bolder and bolder I think freethinkers have to start re-asserting ourselves in the public sphere.

          Then you just have to question the sanity of folks who think their endless pain, disease, setbacks and so forth are the god character’s “plan” for them, which they deem to be always good and loving!

          We were given a new diagnosis yesterday and it is a ‘new’ cancer, not ovarian. Her oncologist is leaning towards lymphoma. She got blood drawn and a ct guided biopsy as well. It’s funny how everyone remembers her file and are amazed she is still here with us. Being a Christian, I am so thankful for cancer, because it really did scare the Hell out of my mom. She accepted Jesus as her Savior the night before her big surgery. It is a testament of the Lords great power! No matter if she lives or dies, she is His!

          It’s really hard to have a serious conversation with people like this, who are apparently the majority.

          There is really no hope. Humans are severely defective.

          1. Short Plank

            It has been said that there are no atheists in foxholes, and while I’ve never been in anything close to a foxhole in my life it’s easy to comprehend the claim. Don’t we all, in extremis, clutch at straws? And isn’t even an illusory straw better than no straw at all?

            Suffering from depression myself I am aware that much research suggests that drugs such as SSRIs are in fact no more effective at relieving the problem than a placebo. Would I not be better off not knowing that?

    4. Optimader

      Oh what a slippery slope, this diagnosis : Mental Illness.
      For the sake of debate I can argue that just one demographic that accounts for ~+40% of the US population is clearly mentally ill. This obviously doesn’t account for other incidental demographic indicators that are markers of batshit crazy.
      So presumably, without too much consideration, we can push the % to well into the regime of the majority of the US population being crazy. That being the case, most people are mentally ill.
      Normal is mentally ill, QED.

      1. Charles LeSeau

        “Normal is mentally ill, QED.”

        Yes, +1000. I’ve been convinced of this for some time now. It sounds like an absurdist statement straight out of Heller’s Catch-22, but normal people are a bunch of weirdos.

        1. Emma

          “but normal people are a bunch of weirdos”
          Yes, +1000
          ps. manibus pedibusque frightening too….

        2. Yves Smith Post author

          Normalcy is highly overrated.

          Normal in America = smile, don’t rock the boat, be productive.

          Why should anyone accept the requirement to be normal (suck it in and cope) when people are having their economic and social well being taken from them?

    5. Danb

      This “The Maddening of America” article is a bit maddening itself. I read its thesis as the USA offering a wide variety of non-choices, similar to Marcuse’s repressive tolerance. Virtually all cultural life choices in this country lead to some form of overconsumption and conformity. I guess this author did not consider Marcuse, Fromm, Goffman, Foucault and others in her contemplations of mental illness. And its a weirdly thoghut-truncated article as well. Maybe she’s just promoting a book to mental health circles.

      1. Lidia

        I agree that the “Maddening” article reads more like notes for an article… However, it’s no surprise to me that Americans have a higher degree of mental illness, if only judging by the unprecedented amount of energy dedicated to gaslighting us.

        The recent, pathetic, McDonald’s budget “assistance” PR move is a phenomenal example of that. It comes from the same psuedo-helping place as the Obama admin.’s web petitions and lies about the most transparent administration ever.

        People in other countries are less naïve. They know that government and companies are out to screw them. When I moved to Italy in 2000, I started reading a variety of newspapers. My Italian husband asked why I was reading them. “To find out what’s going on.” He snorted and said “the newspapers don’t tell you what’s goin on, are you crazy?” In fact, out of dozens of elderly and middle-aged Italians that I knew well enough, only one ever read the newspaper. In Italy, we didn’t have TVs in every public space, either.

        I wanna get one of those secret remotes that turns off TVs.

    6. tim s

      How can we in America not be mentally ill??

      Most of our rooted traditions are barely or no longer intact, our families are broken (a nuclear family is good but not enough – an extended family support system provides the best support for young, middle & old), strangers tend to spend more time with our children than we do, our entertainment generally tends to make us feel bad about ourselves whether we know it or not, our social spaces have been replaced by testosterone and/or libido pits, Christianity is confused and confounded, and those who love money more than anything else have the reigns of political power, all while being continually told from childhood that WE’RE THE GREATEST COUNTRY IN HISTORY.

      Anyone who is completely absorbed by any of the previous issues can hardly be a well balanced individual. And for the few who manage to escape the many entrapments that modern western culture lays, may well go mad at the realization of the absurdity of it all and the seeming necessity of how it must end someday (soon?)

    7. Yves Smith Post author

      I don’t have time to dig up the quote from Heilbroner, but he’s got a further discussion about our blindness to power dynamics, that in feudalism, it was fear of the lash that got people to work, in capitalism we don’t recognize the coercion in how people work in jobs that most of them hate.

      He does not say this, but I can’t imagine a hunter-gatherer being unhappy about hunting (the fact that hunting is a hobby for many says it’s pleasurable for many) but about not succeeding in hunting or finding food and therefore going hungry. Unless of course he was a sensitive misfit hunter-gatherer. :-)

      1. susan the other

        Funny. I’m just reading about Dada and Surrealist film which ended too soon, in the 30s. The book invokes Foucault who elaborated on power in modern society which controls information. Chomsky says this too. Back c. 1920 Francis Picabia who was a French cubist painter, did a film entitled Eutre’acte. (does this mean It’s your act?), which enraged audiences. They screamed derision at the screen because they were insulted by the narrator; the theater showed the first act during intermission; all cherished human conventions were assailed – like a hosed down chess game; and an hilarious scene of mourners running frantically after a hearse instead of affecting dignity. Sounds like pure filmmaking genius to me. Where have we all been?

  6. Synopticist

    From the Atlantic story about DNA testing…
    “When powerful people break the law in America — torturing prisoners, say, or illegally spying on Americans without warrants –…”
    But no mention of bankers and oligarchs looting the country with abandon. Fair play to them for getting innocent people out of jail obviously, but this is why I’m instinctively distrustful of campaigning lawyer types, they ignore the really big problems.

    FW Beard will know what I mean when I say I’m put in mind of Mathew 23.23 and Luke 11.42. They tithe mint and Rue, but leave the weightier matters of the law undone.

    1. from Mexico

      My take-away from that article was how easily and arbitrarily the police, prosecutors and judges can manipulate and cherry pick evidence.

      The evidence really doesn’t mean much when it is manipulated, for instance, to the extent it was in the George Zimmerman trial in order to acquit Zimmerman.

        1. from Mexico

          According to research by the Malcolm X Grassroots Movement, a Black person was killed by police or racist vigilantes every 28-hours in 2012.

          “It is worth remembering that the past, as William Faulkner warned, is never past…”
          –Ralph Ellison

  7. Carla

    Sorry, I did not mean to reply to “from Mexico.” But then, my comment is not completely irrelevant to the topic “The Maddening of America.”

  8. from Mexico

    So if the “widest scope for personal self-definition” in liberal Western society is a fiction, then what other major differences exist between liberal Western societies and more traditional ones?

    In the following lecture, Jonathan Haidt points out two:

    1) There is much less connectedness in liberal Western societies. We in the West live in what Haidt calls “Atom-World,” created by post-enlightenment forces of modernity,” whereas people in traditional societies live in “Lattice-World,” and

    2) Anomie is much greater in liberal Western societies. Anomie Haidt defines as “a condition or malaise in individuals, characterized by an absence or diminution of standards or values.” The result is low moral communal capital, which Haidt defines as “Social capital, plus institutions, traditions and norms that guarantee that contributions and hard work will be rewarded, and that free-riders, exploiters and criminals will be punished.”

    In The Origins of Totalitarianism, Hannah Arendt argues that “Atom-World” is a pre-condition which is necessary before large swaths of the general population will buy into the extreme contempt for facts and for common sense of totalitarian propaganda:

    The masses’ escape from reality is a verdict against the world in which they are forced to live and in which they cannot exist, since coincidence has become its supreme master and human beings need the constant transformation of chaotic and accidental conditions into a man-made pattern of relative consistency. The revolt of the masses against “realism,” common sense, and all “the plausibilities of the world” (Burke) was the result of their atomization, of their loss of social status along with which they lost the whole sector of communal relationships in whose framework common sense makes sense.

    1. from Mexico

      And speaking of “the extreme contempt for facts and for common sense of totalitarian propaganda,” how does Obama expect us to believe his claim that the federal government doesn’t do law enforcement when stuff like this happens:

      A University of California San Diego student left unmonitored in a holding cell for five days by the Drug Enforcement Administration has settled a lawsuit for $4.1 million, his attorney said Tuesday.

      “This was a mistake of unbelievable and unimaginable proportions,” said attorney Julia Yoo.
      Daniel Chong, 25, drank his own urine to survive and even wrote a farewell note to his mother before authorities discovered him severely dehydrated after a 2012 drug raid in San Diego.

      Chong was detained on the morning of April 21 when DEA agents raided a house they suspected was being used to distribute MDMA, commonly known as “ecstasy.”

      In a contest between the criminal justice systems of the US and Mexico, it would be a photo finish to see which one wins the prize for the most corrupt and incompetent.

  9. pubelius

    It makes perfect sense that NSA cutout Google would try to throttle the best remaining ways of going dark in this totalitarian regime. Running i2p is increasingly crucial to protecting your right to privacy and free association. If you hope to preserve your right to seek and obtain information, you’ll need to get conversant with Freenet, GNUnet or tor hidden services. Takes a bit of persistence but with Big Brother subjecting you to X-KEYSCORE, it’s a survival skill.

    Makes my hair stand on end, the number of sophisticated social justice and advocacy groups that blindly trust google. Just go confess directly to the FBI, Why don’t you?

  10. Cincop8

    RE: Is PG&E an evil company? Short answer is yes. I happen to have a privileged view of the inner workings of the company and can say with clear certainty that senior management remains focused on earnings at the expense of other considerations. I consider that evil.

  11. rich

    When Is Your American Express Bill Due?

    Why don’t you guys just put the due date on the damned bill?

    The answer it turns out is simple: FLOAT. American Express hides their due date, puts a Please Pay By on their invoices, and guess what happens? Millions of busy small business owners and harried families pay a few weeks early.

    Thus, for the omission of a simple honest due date, Dow component American Express manages to capture 100s of millions of dollars per year in free money. All they have to do to earn it is engage is one of the most misleading consumer finance practices I have ever come across.

  12. Lambert Strether

    On the Gawker article: I took it for irony (turnabout is fair play) with a soupçon of truth*.

    In fact, besides being ironic, the article has a truth at the heart. Check this comment. I had no idea, for example, that the shooter in the Wisconsin Sikh temple case had white supremacist “roots” in Orange County (where Huntington Beach is). But read the whole thread, all the comments, not just the first. What a microcosm. Why does anybody read The New Yorker when they can read Gawker?

    NOTE * Since I live in a college town, I know what drunk dudebros in packs can do.

    1. Susan the other

      There’s definitely something wrong with me. I think it is way funny when an angry crowd of 20-somethings reach critical mass and tip over a whole row of porta-potties. I loved it. It’s the next stage that worries me.

    2. Bruno Marr

      (This is a re-located comment; by me)

      The Comments following the Gawker article about white riots in Huntington Beach are hillarious. One commenter calls another an “Uncle Chet” (sardonic short-hand for a white “Uncle Tom”). It’s priceless.

    3. from Mexico

      That comment reminded me of this:

      One countered racial provocation by cloaking one’s feelings in that psychologically inadequate equivalent of a plaster cast — or bulletproof vest — known as “cool.” I had read Hemingway’s definition, but for Negroes, “grace under pressure” was far less a gauge of courage than of good common sense. The provocative words of whites were intended to goad one beyond words and into the area of physical violence. But while sticks and stones broke bones, mere words could be dismissed by considering their source and keeping a cool eye on the odds arrayed against one….

      That a head with a few knots on it was preferable to a heart with bullets through it was obviously true…

      [Y]ou were surrounded by whiteness, and it was far from secure in its power. It thrived on violence and sought endlessly for victims, and in its hunger to enforce racial discrimination it was indiscriminating about its victims. It didn’t care whether its victims were guilty or innocent, for guilt lay not in individual acts of wrongdoing but in non-whiteness, in Negro-ness. Whiteness was a form of manifest destiny which designated Negroes as its territory and challenge…

      [W]e were compelled to buffer the pain and negate the humiliation by making grotesque comedy out of the extremes to which whites would go to keep us in what they considered to be our “place.” …

      [I]t was the Negroes who were designated the South’s untouchable caste. As such, they were perceived as barely controllable creatures of untamed instincts, and a group against whom all whites were obligated to join in the effort required for keeping them within their assigned place. This mindless but widely held perception was given doctrinal credibility through oppressive laws…

      Considered soberly and without the consolation of laughter, it was mad, surreal, and further complicated by the fact that not all whites abhorred Negroes… Your safety demanded a careful attention to detail and mood of social scene, because you had to avoid even friendly whites when they were in the company of their fellows, because it was in crowds that the hate, fear, and blood madness took over. When it did, it could transform otherwise friendly whites into mindless members of mobs. Most of all, you must avoid them when women of their group are present. When a Negro male came into view, the homeliest white woman became a goddess, a cult figure deified in the mystique of whiteness, a being from whom a shout or cry or expression of hand or eye could unleash a rage of human sacrifice. When the ignorant, torch-bearing armies assembled by night, black men burned in the fire of white men’s passions…

      If all of this seems long ago and far away, it is worth remembering that the past, as William Faulkner warned, is never past…

      Anti-Negro stereotypes were the currency through which the myth of white supremacy was kept alive, while the awe-inspiring enactment of the myth took the form of a rite in which a human victim was sacrificed…

      In action, racial discrimination is as nondiscriminating as a car bomb detonated in a crowded public square, because both car bomb and lynch rope are savagely efficient ways of destroying distinctions between the members of a hated group while rendering quite meaningless any moral questioning that might arise regarding the method used.

      –RALPH ELLISON, “An Extravagance of Laughter”

    1. Massinissa

      “But to act like having the government track who you call is the height of government abuse is a very white privileged view of the privacy issue.”

      If you care about Stasi tracking your phone calls, its white privilege! Because everyone knows it already happens to black people! Or something!

      I dont have ANY words, NO WORDS AT ALL, about this comment. I dont even know what to say Lambert. Im so stunned. Its getting to the point where I think Obots are even more unintelligent than the most deranged of tea baggers. I just… Lambert I just dont have any words for this. That paragraph sounds like it could have come from the Onion.

      1. Klassy!

        Yes, it is pretty repulsive. Of course his privelege comes not so much from being white as being on the side of might.

      2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Democrats make the best Republicans.

        This will never change – when people convert, they will be zealots. They will be fanatical.

        The ego says, whatever you believe in now, everyone else must agree with you.

        Today, I’ve found my religion. Now, everyone must be like me. Why aren’t they like me?!?!?!

          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            Perhaps it’s all the more unsightly with that never-in-doubt opportunism.

    2. Hack privilege

      Yeah well I don’t give a rat’s ass about voter suppression of Dem dupes because the Turkmen only get one shit party to vote for instead of two shit parties like Kos has.

  13. rich

    Economic Recovery by Statistical Manipulation

    However, it appears income (GDI) is rising faster than GDP output. The BEA revisions therefore appear aimed at raising GDP to the higher GDI levels.

    But income is rising faster because investors, wealthy households (2%), and their corporations are increasing their income at an accelerating pace from financial securities investments—that don’t show up in GDP calculations which consider only production of real goods and services and exclude financial securities income like stocks, bonds, and derivatives. So instead of adjusting GDI downward, the BEA will raise GDP. It appears from early press indications it will do this by reducing deductions from GDP due to research and development and by now counting some kinds of financial investments as GDP.

    Apart from making it appear the US economy is doing better than it in fact is, what are the motivations for the forthcoming redefinition of GDP, one should ask?

    For one thing, it will make it appear that US federal spending as a share of GDP is less than it is and that US federal debt as a share of GDP is less than it is. That adds ammunition to the Obama administration as it heads into a major confrontation with the US House of Representatives, controlled by radical Republicans, over the coming 2014 budget and debt ceiling negotiations again in a couple of months. It also will assist the joint Obama-US House effort to cut corporate taxes by hundreds of billions of dollars more, as legislation for the same now moves rapidly through Congress in time for the budget-debt ceiling negotiations.

    Revising GDP also enables the Federal Reserve to justify its plans to slow its $85 billion a month liquidity injections (quantitative easing, QE) into the banks and private investors. This ‘tapering’ was raised as a possibility last June, and set off a firestorm of financial asset price declines in a matter of days, forcing the Fed to quickly retreat. But the Fed and global bankers know QE is starting to destabilize the global economy in serious ways and both, along with the Obama administration, are looking for ways to slow and ‘taper’ its magnitude—i.e. slow the $85 billion. Redefining GDP upward, along with upward revisions to jobs in coming months, will allow the Fed to revisit ‘tapering’ after September, when the budget-debt ceiling-corporate tax cut deals are concluded between Obama and the US House Republicans.

  14. dimitris

    On running your own email server on premises and Google’s (and others’) no-server policies:

    Plebe-class internet connections generally don’t offer static IP addresses. Even when they do, these are overpriced and – crucially – almost never offer reverse DNS record access.

    Due to widely deployed spam countermeasures, lack of a proper reverse DNS record means that you’d have to route outbound email through a third party email server, typically the ISP, and that negates the 4th benefit you’re after in the first place.

    So, to route around general ISP crappiness including no-server policies:

    – Get a cloud virtual server (VPS). These come with a static address and reverse DNS record access and cost under $10/mo, often much less (see This is less than what ISPs charge for just a static IP address (when they evern offer it).

    – Set up your domain’s MX/SPF/PTR et al records.

    – From your real email server on your LAN, open two ssh tunnels to the VPS: One for outbound traffic and one (reverse tunnel) for inbound.

    – Configure your email server accordingly, e.g. route outbound email over the appropriate tunnel, so that it hits the outside world via your public VPS address.

    1. ScottS

      Why do we still not have PGP by default? Why doesn’t Outlook and GMail support these by default?

      1. subgenius

        why don’t m$ products support strong encryption/privacy? you really have to ask????

      2. dimitris

        PGP (or similar) email encryption doesn’t rely on the network’s guts to provide anything over and above regular email relay. Yay for the end-to-end (aka “stupid network smart edges”) principle.

        They do however get to, if they wish:

        – Block encrypted emails to perhaps force you onto less secure channels (not exactly subtle so kind of defeats the point of surveillance).

        – Traffic analysis (referred to as metadata lately): Who’s emailing whom, how much, with what subjects, when and from what (geo-located) IP addreses. That’s because PGP only protects the body of the message.

        The big impediment to widespread use of PGP, or more hard-core solutions in the vein of is social: How many of your correspondents are willing to do the extra privacy hygiene work?

        1. dimitris

          I didn’t make this clear above: You very much *can* use PGP with GMail, Outlook et al today (I do). It doesn’t solve the social problem however.

          1. ScottS

            That’s why I said “by default” twice.

            Yes, traffic analysis is a big bad tool, too. Using PGP and Tor en masse should make it infeasible to casually snoop on everyone.

            On the flip-side, I’m tempted to just poor my heart out on Facebook so that the NSA’s dirt on me is worthless. Not that there’s anything terribly exciting there. But it’s one way to take something away from the NSA if everyone follows suit or otherwise stop playing along at being dually shocked when salacious dirt is used to blackmail key people.

            I know, I’ll be waiting quite a while for people to stop being titillated by gossip.

    2. Yves Smith Post author

      But will your e-mail also wind up on the cloud VPS? If so, you’ve defeated the purpose. You’ve also put your records on a third party server outside your premises. Only stuff on your premises is considered private.

      1. hunkerdown

        The VPS stores nothing but a few log entries each time you open the tunnels. Those who have a heightened risk profile may wish to reduce or eliminate even those.

        The tunneling stuff he’s talking about is a bit like running a steel-jacketed extension cord between your home (where the server is) and the VPS (where the unfettered IP access is).

        1. hunkerdown

          That is, it just passes packets back and forth between the well-known Internet endpoints for mail and its end of the encrypted pipe to your home.

          Thinking about the idea a little more, the idea is sound, but the suggested tool isn’t quite up to sending outbound email, unless you can tolerate working copies laying around on your VPS. But a more old-fashioned VPN using PPTP or a non-MSFT alternative would work just fine.

    3. curfuzzled

      As someone who has home hosted for a long, long time, I don’t think the above comment about how hard it is to get a static IP/reverse DNS at home it totally accurate. It really boils down to geography, a willingness to settle for a slower internet connection, and if you can spare an extra $20/mo to home host. Oh, and the time to keep things running too. And beer. :-)

      In Minnesota, there was a healthy ecosystem of independent DSL providers who were more than happy to hand out a block of 8 static IP addresses (or a single static like I have now) and make the reverse whatever you like. Generally you would pay the local telco $30 to connect you to the ISP and then another $20 to the ISP itself (with a single static IP). If you wanted a block of 8 IP addresses that might be another $15.

      In California, I had to go with a much more expensive DSL provider, Speakeasy. Static IP address and a legitimate reverse here too. Their customer support was nothing short of amazing and they were accommodating of my strange DSL modem setup (I was using low end Cisco gear from Ebay instead of the Chinese DSL modems that crash all the time). That was more like $70/mo. Still worth in my opinion. I would have considered business class cable, but they wanted to lock me into year long contracts and I didn’t care for the place I was living, so I opted to go with slower DSL.

  15. Hugh

    “Underemployment as a challenge to orthodox economics” Ya think? Isn’t reality a challenge, indeed an insurmountable hurdle, for orthodox or pretty much any kind of economics? Good thing that economics as propaganda has nothing to do with it.

    “The next Federal Reserve chair shouldn’t be Wall Street’s servant” Who writes these headlines? And while we are at it, we should get a pony. There should always be a pony.

    Manning, Snowden, and Assange all stood up against the machine of empire and must be crushed by it to décourager les autres.

    As for Manning’s judge, it just goes to show that more Nazi judges should have been tried at Nuremberg to remind the judiciary of its responsibilities.

    Along these lines, I saw elsewhere that Reggie Walton who had presided over the Scooter Libby trial and is a FISA judge was complaining that Verizon had not “protested” the FISA court’s order to comply with the government’s demands for all its records. Who exactly was Verizon supposed to protest the court order to? To what end, seeing as it was all a done deal?

    1. The Black Swan

      We had trouble understanding reality, so we created myths and metaphors to explain the world we lived in. Now our myths and metaphors have replaced our reality.

      1. rich

        The U.S. Military Has Awarded Contracts to Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan

        I suppose it just wasn’t enough that our allies, “the rebels” in Syria, have significant Al-Qaeda elements to them. No, we are the USA! USA! Best country ever. Defender of human rights. City on a hill. We must do far more than that. So we did.

        This story below from Bloomberg, highlights a 236-page report by the U.S. Army Suspension and Debarment Office, which shows that military contracts have been granted to the Taliban and Al-Qaeda in Afghanistan. Yep, this is exactly what happens when an empire gets too big, too corrupt, and ends up in the hands of a bunch of sociopaths. From Bloomberg:

        Supporters of the Taliban and al-Qaeda in Afghanistan have been getting U.S. military contracts, and American officials are citing “due process rights” as a reason not to cancel the agreements, according to an independent agency monitoring spending.

        “I am deeply troubled that the U.S. military can pursue, attack, and even kill terrorists and their supporters, but that some in the U.S. government believe we cannot prevent these same people from receiving a government contract,” Sopko said.

        Exclusive: Russian billionaire seeks U.S. government financing for luxury jets
        (Reuters) – Billionaire Russian businessman Gennady Timchenko, a long-time associate of Russian President Vladimir Putin, plans to seek U.S. government-backed funding to buy luxury aircraft, Reuters has learned.

        To smooth the path for financial backing from the U.S. Export-Import Bank and allay possible U.S. government concerns about him, Timchenko hired lobbyists from powerhouse Washington law firm Patton Boggs, according to emails and documents viewed by Reuters.

        Timchenko plans to ask Ex-Im Bank for a loan guarantee to buy as many as 11 aircraft from Gulfstream Aerospace of Savannah, Georgia, according to one U.S. official who spoke to his lobbyists – though the scope of the potential deal remains unclear.

        Timchenko is one of Russia’s richest oligarchs, the billionaire business barons who emerged following the fall of the Soviet Union, some of whom enjoy close ties to Putin. The plane order would bolster the fleet of Timchenko’s Finland-based luxury jet charterer, Airfix Aviation Oy, whose aircraft have reportedly transported Kremlin-linked businessmen and Russian government officials.

        Patton Boggs acknowledged its work on Timchenko’s behalf. It told Reuters it has held preliminary talks with Ex-Im Bank, officials from two Senate offices and a U.S. congressional policy advisor, without naming the officials. The firm said the talks with Ex-Im Bank involved a loan guarantee for a single jet that Airfix has already ordered.

        “These discussions were preliminary,” said Patton Boggs partner Joseph Brand in an email.

        Money for everyone….just don’t ask for a higher wage, medical, or food?

        1. ScottS

          Now the NSA can legally spy on our nearless feeders since they are aiding and abetting Al Quaeda and it’s Associated Forces.

  16. McWatt

    A bond whose income stream is rental payments. How stupid is that.

    “They can do anything we can’t stop the from doing.” Catch-22

  17. ChrisPacific

    The story on Snowden’s father has been interesting in the sense that we’ve been able to watch him become disillusioned with the US in real time. At the beginning he was obviously a believer in the US as the land of the free and protector of the rights of the individual. The speed with which he has lost faith demonstrates how little effort the administration is actually making to pretend that this is about justice and not revenge.

    If we accept the US/Russia role reversal at face value, the next move of the Soviet-era KGB would probably have been to threaten the father, maybe by arresting him on a trumped-up charge. The US equivalent is probably selective enforcement, so it will be interesting to see whether it follows the script. I hope Snowden Sr. doesn’t have any skeletons in his closet – the US surely has access to all the dirt on him it could want by virtue of the investigation of Edward.

    1. ScottS

      Well digging dirt up on Sr. would certainly prove the point Jr. is trying to make. As Bill Black says, it’s impossible to compete with self-parody.

  18. Chauncey Gardiner

    Thank you for the links to the articles from the Guardian and Ambrose Evans-Pritchard at the Telegraph regarding the top two candidates to replace Ben Bernanke as Fed Chair. Too bad the choices have been limited to these two individuals, as both are questionable choices IMO: Yellen for her support of a very aggressive monetarist approach that in my view has succeeded only in transferring wealth to large transnational banks and the wealthiest segment of society; and Summers for his failed support of deregulation, derivatives, and the overturning of the Glass-Steagall Act (although he seems to support a Keynesian solution in terms of fiscal spending which I share).

    Appears Summers’ star may be on the wane:

  19. Steve Finnell



    Acts 2:41 So then, those who received his word were baptized; and there were added about three thousand souls. Acts 2:47….And the Lord was adding to their number day by day those who were being saved.

    All three thousand believed the apostle Peter’s message and were baptized in water. Then they were added to the Lord’s church by the Lord Himself. The Lord did not add the unsaved to His church. They had to believe and be baptized in water prior to being added to the body of Christ.

    1. Acts 2:22 Men of Israel, listen to these words: Jesus the Nazarene, a man attested to you by God with miracles and wonders and signs which God performed through Him in your midst, just as you yourselves know—

    All three thousand believed Jesus was a miracle worker.

    2. Acts 2:31-32 he looked ahead and spoke of the resurrection of the Christ, that He was neither abandoned to Hades, nor did His flesh suffer decay. 32 This Jesus God raised up again, to which we are all witnesses.

    All three thousand believed in the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ.

    3. Acts 2:36 Therefore let all the house of Israel know for certain that God has made him both Lord and Christ—this Jesus whom you crucified.”

    All three thousand believed that Jesus was Lord and Christ.

    4. Acts 2:38 Peter said to them, “Repent, and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.

    All three thousand repented in order to have sins forgiven. (repentance meant that they made the commitment to turn from their unbelief and sinful lifestyle and turn toward God).

    All three thousand were baptized in water in order to have their sins forgiven.

    All three thousand received the indwelling gift of the Holy Spirit after they believed, repented, and were baptized in water.

    5. Acts 2:40 And with many other words he solemnly testified and kept on exhorting them, “Be saved from this perverse generation!”

    All three thousand were saved after they believed Peter’s message: They believed, repented, confessed, and were baptized in water. (Mark 16:16, John 3:16, Acts 3:19, Acts 2:38, Romans 10:9-10, Acts 8:35-38) THEN THEY WERE ADDED TO THE LORD’S CHURCH! (Acts 2:47)


    1.Peter did not preach that men were saved by grace alone.

    2.Peter did not preach that men were saved by faith only

    3.Peter did not preach that God had selected a few to be saved and that all others would go to hell.

    4. Peter did not preach that water baptism was not essential to salvation.

    5. Peter did not preach that Jesus was just one of many Saviors.

    6. Peter did not preach that once you were saved, that you could continue in a sinful lifestyle and still be saved.

    7. Peter did not preach that God did not have the power to give us an inerrant translation of the Scriptures.

    8. Peter did not preach that God would provide hundreds or thousands of different Christian denominations, and that they would teach different ways of being saved.

    9. Peter did preach that you had to speak in tongues as evidence that you were saved.

    AS BELIEVERS IN CHRIST, MEN SHOULD USE THE BIBLE AS THEIR GUIDE FOR SALVATION. Looking to man-made creed books, Bible commentaries, denominational statements of faith, and church catechisms, is looking in all the wrong places for the absolute truth!

    YOU ARE INVITED TO FOLLOW MY CHRISTIAN BLOG. Google search>>>steve finnell a christian view

  20. paul Muller

    My Name is Paul. I will love to share my testimony to all the people in the forum cos i never thought i will have my girlfriend back and she means so much to me..The girl i want to get marry to left me 4 weeks to our wedding for another man..,When i called her she never picked my calls,She deleted me on her facebook and she changed her facebook status from engage to Single…when i went to her place of work she told her boss she never want to see me..I lost my job as a result of this cos i cant get myself anymore,my life was upside down and everything did not go smooth with my life…I tried all i could do to have her back to all did not work out until i met a Man when i Travel to Africa to execute some business have been developing some years back..I told him my problem and all have passed through in getting her back and how i lost my job…he told me he gonna help me…i don’t believe that in the first place.but he swore he will help me out and he told me the reason why my girlfriend left me and also told me some hidden secrets.i was amazed when i heard that from him..he said he will cast a spell for me and i will see the results in the next couple of days..then i travel back to Germany the following day and i called him when i got home and he said he’s busy casting those spells and he has bought all the materials needed for the spells,he said am gonna see positive results in the next 2 days that is Thursday.My girlfriend called me at exactly 12:35pm on Thursday and apologies for all she had done ..she said,she never knew what she’s doing and her sudden behavior was not intentional and she promised not to do that was like am dreaming when i heard that from her and when we ended the call,i called the man and told him my my girl friend called and he said i haven’t seen anything yet… he said i will also get my job back in 3 days time..and when its Sunday,they called me at my place of work that i should resume work on Monday and they gonna compensate me for the time limit i have spent at home without working..My life is back into shape,i have my girlfriend back and we are happily married now with a baby boy and i have my job back too.This man is really powerful..if we have up to 20 people like him in the world,the world would have been a better place..he has also helped many of my friends to solve many problems and they are all happy now..Am posting this to the forum for anybody that is interested in meeting the man for can mail him to, I cant give out his number cos he told me he don’t want to be disturbed by many people across the world..he said his email is okay and he also have a web site if you want to visit him there’ he will replied to any emails asap..hope he helped u out too..good luck. his web site is

  21. Tracy

    Good day readers, my name is Tracy, i want to use this medium to testify for what this powerful spell caster has done to save my relationship. i have been dating my lover for over 3years, all of a sudden, we started having little problems and quarreling over every little issues, i noticed my lover has changed so much, he went further to start cheating on me with other girls, this makes me more angry. i love him so much and will never want to share him with any other girl. when i confronted him about his cheating, he got annoyed and said he want me to give him a little break. i thought this would make him miss me, after 3weeks, he stopped contacting me and refuse answering my calls and my mails. i did all i could to get him back, but the more i try, the more he went further. A friend later introduced me to this spell caster called priest JAYEMA, my friend told my he is good in doing his job. i contacted him for a spell to get my ex back. behold he actually cast a spell for me and my lover came back to me 2days after the spell kneeling and begging me to forgive and accept him back. today we are living together under the same roof and we have never quarrel nor have any misunderstanding. i thank priest JAYEMA for saving my relationship. If any one here is seeking for a genuine spell caster, please search no more, go straight to priest JAYEMA via his email i guarantee you 101% that he will surely put smile back to your face. thanks to you priest JAYEMA, you are truly what people say you are.

  22. Fergie

    Is better to try than not doing any thing to help solved your problem. I was jobless for years no one ask question or help, now that I have visit priest gbenga magic home and every thing went out fine, people have started asking question where I got money. Their wish was for me to live and die in poverty. They all have fail. Thank you priest gbenga for the job spell you cast for me. I will keep telling people about your good magic spell cast. Visit him on his website He might be of a big help to you.

Comments are closed.