Links 7/6/13

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How Military Counterinsurgency Software Is Being Adapted To Tackle Gang Violence in Mainland USA MIT Technology Review (Lance N). The main tool looks to be guilt by association:

The software can also assess the probability that an individual may be a member of a particular gang, even if he or she has not admitted membership. That’s possible by analysing that person’s relationship to other individuals who are known gang members.

Digital Health Record Risks Emerge as Deaths Blamed on Systems Bloomberg

Elderly, wealthy and turned off by Twitter Financial Times

China’s short-term rates stabilize but the yield curve remains inverted Walter Kurtz

Diarmaid Ferriter: History will ask how we could be so docile in face of such betrayal (rich)

Eurozone faces ‘lost decade’ Telegraph

What derailed the UK recovery? Frances Coppola

WHY DID MORSI NOT ACCEPT A COMPROMISE?- Yusuf al-Misry Sic Semper Tryannis (Chuck L)

Egypt clashes after pro-Morsi deaths BBC

Mayhem as Two Egypts Fight for Future New York Times

Egypt: Today’s Developments Moon of Alabama

Market Celebrates Egypt’s Coup, But It’s Not Over Yet OilPrice

Big Brother is Watching You Watch:

Nicaragua, Venezuela presidents say they are willing to grant asylum to Snowden Associated Press

US sends Government an arrest warrant for Snowden Irish Times (p78)

THE NSA COMES RECRUITING Mob and Multitude (Patricia)

Edward Snowden is a whistleblower, not a spy – but do our leaders care? Guardian

What Did These Idiots Think Would Happen If We Hired Contractors To Handle Spying? masaccio, Firedoglake (Carol B)

NSA leaks: UK blocks crucial espionage talks between US and Europe Guardian. This confirms suspicions that the EU would cave. A big mechanism for the faux legality of these programs is to do what amounts to reg arbitrage, to run things you can’t do via your home country’s rules through a partner in a more permissive regime.

ObamaCare Clusterfuck: “Manual workarounds” now in project scope for CT exchange, as Obama’s PR move on the 3-page form caused delay Corrente. Wow, in a bad way.

After Ruling, States Rush to Enact Voting Laws New York Times

It’s Not Just George Zimmerman on Trial, It’s America’s Acceptance of Killing “the Other” TruthOut

Reconciling Modern Monetary Theory with the Wisdom of Mark Thoma Dean Baker

US bond yields soar on robust jobs growth Financial Times

Former AIG Boss Is Building a New Empire Wall Street Journal. Hang on to your wallet.

Map Of Every Sovereign Wealth Fund In The World Reveals Trusts In Our Own Backyard We Didn’t Know Existed Clusterstock (furzy mouse)

Basic Checking Account Fees At 10 Largest Banks ABC (furzy mouse)

Good News About Credit Card Debt Sales Nathalie Martin, Credit Slips. Late to this but important.

Are we having fun yet? John Lanchester on the banks’ barely believable behaviour London Review of Books (Economystic)

The Trials of Hannah Arendt CounterPunch (Carol B)

Antidote du jour (Sonja):


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  1. Skeptic

    Eurozone faces ‘lost decade’ Telegraph

    The sub-headline reads: “The eurozone faces a Japanese style “lost decade” unless action is taken to address the deep-seated problems of its banks, ratesetter Benoît Coeuré has warned. ”

    So, if it doesn’t address the banks, things will get better in a decade? Japan is on its third Lost Decade, isn’t it?

    In addition, one must admire the nonchalance with which the exact time of the economic pain is determined to be a decade, no more, no less.

    These Lost Decade stories are so abundant that one wonders if there is not a Lost Decade major at some of the journalism factories.

    This article is a perfect example of journalistic incompetence and gullibility, not to mention that of the Telegraph’s readers. The only thing telegraphed here is pure, 100% unfact laden baloney.

    Which makes one also wonder if there is an MSM clearing house for this drivel a la Conan O’Brien’s very humorous and devastating demonstration of NEWSPEAK at:

    But you didn’t really need me to tell you all this………………..

    1. Montanamaven

      Very interesting take on Europe at Counterpunch. “The Servility of the Satellites”.

      The Snowden affair has revealed even more about Europe than about the United States.

      Certainly, the facts of NSA spying are significant. But many people suspected that something of the sort was going on. The refusal of France, Italy and Portugal to allow the private aircraft of the President of Bolivia to cross their airspace on the mere suspicion that Edward Snowden might be aboard is rather more astonishing.

      Together, these revelations confirm the completion of the transformation of the “Western democracies” into something else, an entity that as yet has no recognized name.

  2. Ned Ludd

    The Guardian website is one of the most popular English-language news sites in the world.

    The number one spot has been occupied since last January by the Mail Online, an industrial-sized feedbag of celebrity titillation and gossip, with a ComScore rating of 50.2 million monthly unique visitors worldwide for May. Currently in at number two is The New York Times, with 46.2 million. Snapping at its heels is The Guardian: it had 40.9 million last month.

    That was before Edward Snowden arrived on the scene.

    Compare this to the lede in The Washington Post a few days ago: “For a newspaper that’s small and underweight even by British standards, the Guardian has a knack for making some big noises, both in its home market and across the pond.”

    The Guardian: 40.9 million monthly unique visitors.
    The Washington Post: 27.4 million† monthly unique visitors.

    † “In an average month, has 18.8 million unique visitors, and Washington Post Mobile has 8.6 million unique visitors.”

      1. Ned Ludd

        A French news site called Mediapart has found a way to engage in investigative journalism and still be profitable.

        Every week, it seems, a new scandal is unearthed by the upstart, online newspaper . The most recent bomb was that President Francois Hollande’s budget minister was evading taxes when he was supposed to be cracking down on tax cheats. After vehemently denying the allegations, in the face of overwhelming evidence, Jerome Cahuzac was forced to resign. […]

        [Edwy] Plenel, who once presided over the newspaper Le Monde, founded Mediapart with 5 million euros and a commitment to pay 30 journalists a living salary for three years. He says no one thought the site would survive.

        Today, Mediapart operates from a newsroom in the Bastille area of Paris. It has 46 full-time investigative journalists and 75,000 subscribers who pay 90 euros ($117) for a one-year subscription. Mediapart cleared $1.5 million in profit last year.

        The Guardian “enjoys the financial cushion of a large trust”. If advertising revenue is not enough to stay viable, it has the resources to switch to a subscription model like Mediapart or The New York Times. For the latter, “Paying readers climbed to 676,000 at the end of March, a 45 percent gain from a year earlier.” According to Bloomberg, subscription sales now account for the majority of the revenue at The New York Times: $241.8 million of $465.9 million in total revenue for the first quarter of 2013.

        1. Ned Ludd

          Note that 676,000 paying readers refers to digital subscriptions:

          The number of paid subscribers to the Web site, e-reader and other digital editions of The Times and The International Herald Tribune grew to 676,000, a jump of almost 49 percent from the same quarter the year before. Digital subscriptions to The Boston Globe and rose more than 50 percent compared with the same time the year before, to 32,000 subscribers.

          However, $241.8 million in revenue for first quarter includes both print and digital subscriptions.

        2. dearieme

          “The Guardian “enjoys the financial cushion of a large trust”.” Not quite; as part of a tax-dodging stunt a few years ago, the Scott Trust was converted into The Scott Trust Ltd i.e. it became a private company. The Guardian, however, prefers to refer to it still as The Scott Trust. Funny, that.

          1. Ned Ludd

            I did a quick search, but the two articles I found (one in The Guardian, another in Press Gazette) seemed to borrow heavily from the press release from Guardian Media Group.

            The change reinforces existing protections for the Guardian. The core purpose has been enshrined in the constitution of The Scott Trust Limited and cannot be altered or amended. The new company is not permitted to pay dividends, and its constitution has been carefully drafted to ensure that no individual can ever personally benefit from the arrangements. In the unlikely event of its winding up, the assets of the company would be transferred to some other entity which has a similar purpose.

            The change has no impact on the amount of tax GMG pays – or will pay in future – under current legislation. It does address the hypothetical risk of future changes in inheritance tax law that could, in theory, threaten the Guardian’s independence.

            Do you know what they are referring to, when they mention the “hypothetical risk of future changes in inheritance tax law”?

            1. Chris Rogers

              The Guardian newspaper, and its sister title, the Observer, have been on a downward trajectory since Alan Rusbridger became the Editor in 1995, succeeding Peter Preston.

              Whilst the Guardian used to have standards and was indeed protected by the Scott Trust, the change in the status of the Trust, orchestrated by Rusbridger has led to huge layoffs – the last large scale ones being in December 2012, an absolute decline in editorial standards, gross hypocrisy and a move away from a left-of-centre crusading paper, to a supporter of neoliberalism and all that entails – most of this sea change occurring in the period before Labour’s Tony Blair became Premier, with buckets load after 1997 .

              At this juncture in time, the average employee at the Guardian is not too happy, although the alleged heavy hitting columnists and Rusbridger himself are paid a fortune compared to staff in older timeframes, Rusbridger getting nearly £500,000 in salary alone per annum – the Guardian also engages in in tax avoidance on a large scale and yet, still has the temerity to point fingers at others on a regular basis.

              If you wish to get some insight in to the Guardian, I suggest you read the UK’s Private Eye, which is about the only mainstream UK media outlet left that actually attempts to tell the truth.

              God knows why Greenwald and Snowdon deals with they, they’ed have been better advised dealing with Private Eye to break their exclusives – further, the Guardian used to be quite a UK-focused newspaper, now it just tries to attract US/Australian readers online, whilst ignoring its actual UK print edition readership.

              As someone who used to be a regular reader of the Guardian and the Observer, I have not purchased a physical copy of the paper since it came out in support of the Liberal Democrat Party in April 2010 – although much of its Editorial content once Gordon Brown succeeded Blair as Premier was certainly not pro-Labour.

              A once proud newspaper destroyed by ‘greedy fuckers’ and adherents to neoliberalism – A GREAT SHAME AND A GREAT LOSS!

              1. Synopticist

                And the online forum is a complete f*cking sewer, which is particularly depressing because 4 or 5 years ago it used to host some of the very best debates on the net. They deliberatelly dumbed it down as part of the process of supporting the lib dems.

    1. rich

      Wall Street Journal says Egypt needs a Pinochet – can it get away with that?

      The Chilean dictator presided over the torture and murder of thousands, yet still the free-market right reveres his name

      On Friday, the Wall Street Journal published an editorial entitled “After the Coup in Cairo”. Its final paragraph contained these words:

      Egyptians would be lucky if their new ruling generals turn out to be in the mold of Chile’s Augusto Pinochet, who took over power amid chaos but hired free-market reformers and midwifed a transition to democracy.

      Presumably, this means that those who speak for the Wall Street Journal – the editorial was unsigned – think Egypt should think itself lucky if its ruling generals now preside over a 17-year reign of terror. I also take it the WSJ means us to associate two governments removed by generals – the one led by Salvador Allende in Chile and the one led by Mohamed Morsi in Egypt. Islamist, socialist … elected, legitimate … who cares?

      Presumably, the WSJ thinks the Egyptians now have 17 years in which to think themselves lucky when any who dissent are tortured with electricity, raped, thrown from planes or – if they’re really lucky – just shot. That’s what happened in Chile after 1973, causing the deaths of between 1,000 and 3,000 people. Around 30,000 were tortured.

      Presumably, the WSJ hopes a general in the mold of Pinochet (or generals, as they didn’t break the mold when they made him) will preside over all this with the assistance of Britain and America. Perhaps he (or they) will return the favour by helping one of them win a small war.

      1. Massinissa

        When listing the atrocities, you forgot the part where some people were raped by dogs.

        Pinochet was such a great guy, helping get the armies hounds laid! /sarc

      2. prostratedragon

        This editorial to which Yves or someone here linked yesterday, sounds like an advance of the ball, but without the bad taste of actually mentioning Pinochet by name.

  3. from Mexico

    @ “The Trials of Hannah Arendt”

    Thomas S. Harrington said:

    In short, Hannah had the bad taste to put truth above tribe.

    Which gets us to an interesting question.

    As it is becoming increasingly clear, even to the most willfully obdurate observers, that the US, far from being the force for good in the world they told you it was in school, regularly subjects whomever it wants whenever it chooses to espionage, torture, kidnapping, blackmail and assassination, what do you put first? ….The truth or the tribe?

    How we respond individually and collectively to that question will go a long way to determining not only what kind of lives our children will have, but also quite possibly the fate of the world as we know it.

    Arendt’s essay “Civil Disobedience” offers a short history of the conflict of the individual conscience vs. the tribe, beginning with Socrates (the radical individualist) vs. Plato (the conservative tribalist) and then jumping to more contemporary tribalists (Machiavelli, Jefferson, and Lincoln) and individualists (Thoreau).

    Arendt skips over the nominalist revolution which arose to challenge the Neoplatonism and Aristotelism which had come to dominate the thinking of the high priests of Christianity during the high Middle Ages. The nominalist insurgency began to crystallize in the 13th century with the theology of St. Francis of Assisi, was taken up by William of Ockham and other Franciscans in the 14th century and, despite draconian condemnation and censorship by the Church’s priestly caste, was to become by the late 15th century one of the most powerful intellectual movements in Europe. The war on Franciscan theology continues to today, with Pope Francis keeping only the name and official content of the theology, while insinuating a completely different content underneath, transforming it into a masking ideology that serves only the interests of the rich and the powerful.

    Radical equality frequently accompanies radical individualism, which Arendt alludes to in “Civil Disobedience.” She notes that “the good man” and “the good citizen” are “by no means the same” and then notes:

    Good men become manifest only in emergencies, when they suddenly appear, as if from nowhere, in all social strata. The good citizen, on the contrary, must be conspicuous; he can be studied, with the not so very comforting result that he turns out to belong to a small minority: he tends to be educated and a member of the upper social classes.

    1. from Mexico

      And of course we currently have this epic conflict playing out between the good citizen, Barak Obama, and the good man, Edward Snowden.

      Obama, by his actions if not by his words, has made it clarion that he will do anything, that there is no act he will not commit, in the service of American empire, and conscience be damned. Snowden, on the other hand, in true Socratic and Franciscan fashion, has foregone all wordly comforts (and maybe life itself), as well as those of his tribe (his nation), in order to do what his conscience told him was right.

    2. docg

      Harrington’s essay is ludicrously sophomoric and wrongheaded. This guy actually teaches somewhere?

      First of all, Eichmann was kept in a bulletproof glass cage not because he was considered dangerous, but to protect him from someone who might feel justified in taking a potshot at him. For good reason. The idea that the cage was there as part of some political theater is not only wrong, but absurd.

      Harrington also implies that Arendt was sympathetic to Eichmann, and felt he was being treated unfairly, which is not at all the case. The fact that Eichmann’s “evil” was “banal” in no way excuses it. The irony behind Arendt’s position seems to have sailed over Harrington’s head.

      Finally it is not only ludicrous but offensive in the extreme to equate Nazi atrocities with the actions of Obama and the US Government, regardless of what one might think of them. That’s the sort of irresponsible rhetoric we hear all too often from Tea Party fanatics and has no place in civil discourse.

      Does Counterpunch have an editor, or do they just let anyone post?

      1. Lambert Strether

        It is true that Obama’s mechanized slaughter of Others has not been applied on an industrial scale, or domestically. So, point to docg on the implementation details!

      2. Chris Rogers

        To put it bluntly, and despite his alleged colour, Obama would have been marching in step with the worst of the NAZIS scoundrels, and no doubt, would have welcomed the ‘Night of the Long Knifes’ as a necessary move to kill malcontents and radicals.

        To say Obama is not a NAZIS is to ignore the massive parallels between Obama and the Hitler state – indeed, what actual differences are there between the USA’s massive industrial-prison complex and NAZIS concentration camps – none as far as I’m concerned.

        As for democracy, there was a great deal in Hitler’s Germany, as long as it supported the status quo of the marriage between the NAZIS and the old ruling elite, i.e., there was no democracy and the same truth applies to the USA today and swathes of Europe.

        1. docg

          Chris Rogers, the “massive parallels between Obama and the Hitler state” exist only in your fevered mind. I’m not sure whose Kool Aid you’ve been drinking, but it sure sounds to me like the Tea Party brand. As a Jew, I find such parallels offensive in the extreme. Maybe it would be a good idea for you to visit the Holocaust Museum. If you have the stomache for it.

          Sure, Obama is head of state in wartime, and yes, war can be Hell. As I see it, a few drone attacks here and there are nothing compared to the sort of saturation bombings we saw during World War II, the Korean war, the Vietnam war (when Nixon also saturated vast areas of Cambodian forest with agent orange), the Gulf War and the war in Iraq.

          I guess Obama’s “blackness,” though obviously not enough to suit you, is sufficient to trigger some latent racism buried in your pathetic psyche.

          1. Chris Rogers

            I’m a lapsed Protestant, so what possible bearing does this have on the dialogue – as such, who actually cares if you are Jewish.

            The dialogue is about the parallels between the US Presidency of Obama and the Hitler State circa 1933-1945 – its about state control and invasiveness of privacy, democratic oversight and right or wrong.

            i suggest you actually do a little research on the holocaust itself – you’ll find not a great deal of academic debate began on this until the late sixties – further, and despite the rabid anti-semitism of the NAZIS Party and many rightist parties in Germany during the period of the Weimar Republic, the fact remains that it was left-wing intellectuals, trades unionist, Communists, socialists, the mentally handicapped and socially progressive types who bore the brunt of Hitler’s early onslaughts – many of whom were Jewish.

            Perhaps, as @Mexico always reminds us, you need to read some Hannah Arendt before pontificating on these boards.

            I suggest you then examine the industrial-prison complex in the USA and the victims of this process – the majority of whom are not white or Jewish for that matter.

            The fact remains, on all the evidence available, Obama’s administration has many tenants comparable with those found under NAZIS Germany, or for that matter Stalin’s Soviet Union, so, as well as reading Hannah Arendt, I suggest you also read Bullock’s “Parallel Lives” and then make your statements after carefully comparing and contrasting with Obama’s presidency.

            Further, many of the attacks against Obama currently are originating out of the more radical African American community – many of whom, unlike Obama, are actually the descendants of African slaves – their opinion being more worthy than that of your own misguided comments on these boards today.

            Obama is a fascist full stop, and the most radical form of fascism was found under Hitler’s NAZIS Party, which given the evidence, Obama would have been highly supportive of, and this despite his obvious colour.

      3. Paul P

        “actions of US government” not on scale with Nazi.

        The bombing of the civilian population during World War II in Germany and Japan were on a massive scale. Robert McNamara, interviewed by Errol Morris in the Fog of War, describes the fire bombings of Japanese cites: made ovens of of them, killing tens and hundreds of thousand people at a time.

        The US has undermined democracy and instituted and supported dictatorships throughout the Free World. Cuba, Philippines, Guatemala, Indonesia, Chile, Vietnam all involved mass killings. In Vietnam a 10% of the population were killed. Only 58,000 US soldiers were killed in this lopsided slaughter. Were a similar proportion of the population of the US to have been killed, over 20 million would have died.

        The tobacco industry continues its daily drumbeat of death, ranking itself with the great killers of history.

        The Nazi’s, unfortunately, are not exceptions.

        1. docg

          I’m sorry, but the Nazi’s are most certainly exceptions. If you can’t see the difference between the Nazis and the tobacco industry, then I’m sorry but as I see it you might as well be a Nazi yourself.

          1. hunkerdown

            Yeah yeah, we get it. Your identity politics is based in great part on the assertion of unique and exceptional martyrdom, and anyone who dares to think otherwise is in league with evil.

            With due respect, that sounds a lot more like hasbara than discussion.

          2. rob

            Actually, the NAZI’s,weren’t exceptions.And certainly weren’t special ;in relation to the US gov’t.
            The difference is timing.
            Hitler said in his “mein Kampf” that he got the idea for concentration camps from the american experience of putting the native tribes into “reservations”, where genocide was the plan.Breeding them out, educating the indian out of them, and starvation if necessary.Considering that the dept of interior still owes the tribal nations some @130 billion in missing payments to an economically depressed group of peoples,it is true to say they are still being exploited.Ironically, gambling is their main come-uppence today…The other inspiration for hitler in his concentration camps were the ghettos of the catholic churches in various european centers.When napolean freed the jews in the ghettos of italy, this began a freedom for the jewish peoples who had been subjected to wearing “stars”, and being ghettoized for centuries.Need i mention the inquisitions of the catholic church.of previous centuries.
            I would say that in the mind of the socially conservative german citizen of the mid 20th century, putting jews in camps and killing them, wasn’t that strange,There is a lot of historical precedence.The demographic of the german NAZI is similar to the republican party of the US.Which is to say the same as the neo-liberal elements of the democratic party.They were the moderately educated,religous christians,middle strata of the economic range.

            I also would have to say, OBAMA would have been a nazi, if he were allowed to be. Obviously, his race would keep him off the first in line list. But then there was the muslim brotherhood and african possesions where there were blacks allowed to play a part for the fuhrer…
            I would also say this is akin to obama would be one of the black african slave traders who sold his fellow black skinned countrymen to the whites who came looking to buy slaves.This is just because obama is a scumbag, who will lie to everyone,and say anything to further his own agenda. And his agenda has absolutely nothing to do with being a good man or a good citizen.
            Today, Obama merely gets the opportunity to fund the taliban, or to fuel the drug war inciting the murders of thousands,in mexico.Or to let syrians die en-masse.But he doesn’t have the chance so far to show how low he can go… at least not to historic levels.
            And historic levels are what need to be remembered.IMO

            Lets look at nazi’s. lets look at chile.

            Everyone should check out anthony c suttons books on how the west was instrumental for the entirety of the 20th century, first in supporting to the extent that without the morgan and rockefeller syndicates in international business, the bolshevic revolution would have failed. And both in fomenting the petrograd revolution and becoming the ruskobank among others in the soviet union, and then later financing stalins purges in the killing of tens of millions.The american international corporation,kuhn -loeb and other morgan /rockefeller syndicate connections were responsible for largely creating the soviet state before WWII. Even the kochs, made their money building the soviet oil industry for stalin.In testimonies before congress, the us and their interlocking corporate connections were responsible for 70-90% of soviet technology and manufacturing.They were at the same time funding the american and western european side of the buildup; setting up the cold war where they again were funding both sides. Thru the korean war and vietnam.need i go on?

            There was the same play of action in how wall st,and western european intrests, built up hitler.This was going on when hitler came to power. in ’33.Hitler was serviced by the likes of henry ford, GM, ITT, chase bank,Morgan garanty,etc.Again. the western morgan/rockefeller conglomerates. And remember, in 1924, morgan intrests accounted for 1/6th of the GDP of the US. representing some 200 major corporations, and the rockefeller syndicate was nipping on its heels. So throw in the rest of the blue blood families who were staunch fascists;Morgan,rockefeller,stillman,dupont,whitney,ford,sloan,mooney,delano,roosevelt,warburg,kahn,rubin,etc….and their boat load of corporations..who not only built up the german war machine. but like IBM, who created the number system that was tattooed on the arms of jews and also entered into their accounting machines,where their employees actually worked in the camps. Or like ford who built 1/3 of the heavy trucks for the germans, even building two plants in vichy france and northern africa ,respectively, after the war started(Ford and GM sued the american gov’t/air force for bombing plants that were operated for german war material;and won,And were paid reparations. Since their plants,despite making war material that was killing americans and other allied troops were off-limits to bombing by the allies).Or GM , who held patents for aviation fuel components and had stockpiled tonnes of it in europe before the american entry so as to stay “legal”.Or ITT supplying over half of the german communications equiptment during the war. Or chase bank or national city bank,or the bank of international settlements; keeping the payments flowing to germany and the profits of german manufacturing flowing back. Some of these profits coming from concentration camp labor. Like Ig Farbens notorius work camp.AUschwitz.
            Suffice to say, The american gov’t was part of the german war machine. Sure people here were rationaing. But while they were rockefellers standard oil of new jersey (exxon), was changing its port of lading to venuzuela,so that it was able to import more oil/refined product to the axis thru spain, than they sold to the allies…
            I am just saying this is where the US gov’t was during the war. And after the war there was operation paperclip, where many nazi(those who experimented on humans in german concentration camps and even japanese scientists from Ichi island) scientists were brought into the country under false identities, so to form our later cia, and nsa, and other patriotic institutions. Back when project artichoke became MK-Ultra and the same appurattus of the american corporation was allowing the ex-nazi money and expertise to create police states around the world. Like chile.
            After all, the ever so strong possibility that hitler and martin bohrmann were actually spirited away(the grey wolf)to chile and remained there under protection of juan peron,until he died in 1962, and being part of the nazi communities in chile and argentina that numbered in the tens if not hundred thousand.Whether hitler actually made it is still just a possibility.A seeming strong one. And Martin Bormann stalin thought..
            But what is undeniable is the massive amount of wealth that was spirited away, and the @ 750 corporations that were created an d the vast wealth in patents that were transferred along with these corporate immortals who with the protection of the world elite, are the same old money piles and the parents and grandparents of who is who today.
            What I am trying to keep as short as possible without going into too much detail is that the NAZI’s, were just a part of the game that has been going on for some time now. and in particular, the last 100 years has way too many of the same players at the same tables.
            Most of the nazi’s who were convicted at nuremburg were set free in 1949, (65 of 72@), when john j mccloy was the overseer of the american sector of germany after the war.Many of these industrialists/capitalists/fascists, took off their nazi uniforms and put on their regular work clothes and went back to work. And germany marches on to this very day…

            What I don’t get is how do people just keep on doing the same things over and over again, and everyone seems to go along with it. Even the state of isreal is now like a theocratic fascist mini empire that is ghettoizing the palestinians, and assasinating people,right and left. The gov’t of isreal is as corrupt as the gov’t of the US. They Bulldozed that muslim cemetary that was around since the 8th century, to build “the museum of tolerance”.You can’t make this stuff up. There is no end to hypocrisy.Simon wiesenthal doesn’t mean squat to me.It was like ford motor company sponsoring “schindler’s list” on TV…
            Today, We have snowden, and manning, and wikileaks and the occupy movement…and like in the past. All the establishments act in lock step and work to silence the “good” people.

          3. Yves Smith Post author

            You really need to do your homework. The US firebombings of Japan were unquestionably a war crime, a mass scale program of destruction aimed at civilians:

            How many people died on the night of March 9-10 in what flight commander Gen. Thomas Power termed “the greatest single disaster incurred by any enemy in military history?” The Strategic Bombing Survey estimated that 87,793 people died in the raid, 40,918 were injured, and 1,008,005 people lost their homes. Robert Rhodes, estimating the dead at more than 100,000 men, women and children, suggested that probably a million more were injured and another million were left homeless. The Tokyo Fire Department estimated 97,000 killed and 125,000 wounded. The Tokyo Police offered a figure of 124,711 killed and wounded and 286,358 building and homes destroyed. The figure of roughly 100,000 deaths, provided by Japanese and American authorities, both of whom may have had reasons of their own for minimizing the death toll, seems to me arguably low in light of population density, wind conditions, and survivors’ accounts. [28] With an average of 103,000 inhabitants per square mile and peak levels as high as 135,000 per square mile, the highest density of any industrial city in the world, and with firefighting measures ludicrously inadequate to the task, 15.8 square miles of Tokyo were destroyed on a night when fierce winds whipped the flames and walls of fire blocked tens of thousands fleeing for their lives. An estimated 1.5 million people lived in the burned out areas. Given a near total inability to fight fires of the magnitude produced by the bombs, it is possible to imagine that casualties may have been several times higher than the figures presented on both sides of the conflict. The single effective Japanese government measure taken to reduce the slaughter of US bombing was the 1944 evacuation to the countryside of 400,000 children from major cities, 225, 000 of them from Tokyo. …

            According to Japanese police statistics, the 65 raids on Tokyo between December 6, 1944 and August 13, 1945 resulted in 137,582 casualties, 787,145 homes and buildings destroyed, and 2,625,279 people displaced. [30] Following the Tokyo raid of March 9-10, the firebombing was extended nationwide. In the ten-day period beginning on March 9, 9,373 tons of bombs destroyed 31 square miles of Tokyo, Nagoya, Osaka and Kobe. Overall, bombing strikes destroyed 40 percent of the 66 Japanese cities targeted, with total tonnage dropped on Japan increasing from 13,800 tons in March to 42,700 tons in July. [31] If the bombing of Dresden produced a ripple of public debate in Europe, no discernible wave of revulsion, not to speak of protest, took place in the US or Europe in the wake of the far greater destruction of Japanese cities and the slaughter of civilian populations on a scale that had no parallel in the history of bombing…

            The United States, its homeland untouched by war, suffered approximately 100,000 deaths in the entire Asian theater, a figure lower than that for the single Tokyo air raid of March 10, 1945, and well below the death toll at Hiroshima or in the Battle of Okinawa. Japan’s three million war dead, while thirty times the number of US dead, was still only a small fraction of the toll suffered by the Chinese who resisted the Japanese military juggernaut.


            The overwhelming majority of Japanese war deaths were civilians. And that does not factor in the “starving time” or 1945 to 1947. Japanese were reduced to foraging on beaches for seaweed to eat.

      4. from Mexico

        @ docg says:

        Harrington’s essay is ludicrously sophomoric and wrongheaded.

        Methinks the lady doth protest too much.

        While Arendt does indeed talk about “Adolf Eichmann, son of Karl Adolf Eichmann, the man in the glass booth built for his own protection,” she also talks about how “the newly built Beth Ha’am, the House of the People” was “not a bad place for the show trial David Ben-Gurion, Prime Minister of Israel, had in mind when he decided to have Eichmann kidnaped in Argentina” and brought back to trial in Jerusalem.

        But the intended show trial didn’t turn out quite like Ben-Gurion had intended, despite the “love of showmanship” of his Attorney General, Gideon Hausner — “the invisible stage manager of the proceedings.” This was in part due, says Arendt, because “at no time is there anything theatrical in the conduct of the judges.” “They are so obviously three good and honest men,” Arendt observes, “that one is not surprised that none of them yields to the greatest temptation to playact in this setting.” “And Justice,” concludes Arendt, “though perhaps an ‘abstraction’ for those of Mr. Ben-Gurion’s turn of mind, proves to be a much sterner master than the Prime Minister with all his power.”

        What is completely lost upon you is the fact that Ben-Gurion, despite the quite obvious fact that Arendt held him in such very low esteem, is nevertheless, morally and ethically speaking, a saint in comparison to Obama. Obama would never run the risk of having an intended show trial backfire on him, along with having inconvenient truths come to light, as happened to Ben-Gurion with the Eichmann trial. What we get instead with Obama are secret military trials, a la Manning, which are a veritable travesty of justice, or more frequently the other “solution” that Ben-Gurion decided against, but which Arendt nevertheless speaks of:

        [I]nstead of capturing Eichmann and flying him to Israel, the Israeli agents could have killed him right then and there, in the streets of Buenos Aires.

        “The notion was not without merit,” Arendt goes on to explain. “The advantages of this solution to the problem of legalities that stand in the way of justice are obvious,” because a civil trial “is not ‘a spectacle with prearranged results’ but contains that element of ‘irreducible risk’ which, according to Kirchheimer, is an indispensable factor in all criminal trials.” But, as Arendt concludes, “it is more than doubtful that this solution would have been justifiable in Eichmann’s case, and it is obvious that it would have been altogether unjustifiable if carried out by government agents.”

        So let me ask you a question, docg. Do you consider the crimes that were committed by those Obama has ordered to be sumarily assassinated to be of so much greater severity than those committed by Eichmann that they justify this “solution” exercised by Obama?

      5. from Mexico

        docg says:

        Finally it is not only ludicrous but offensive in the extreme to equate Nazi atrocities with the actions of Obama and the US Government, regardless of what one might think of them.

        Pure, 24 kt. straw-manning, at least where Thomas S. Harrington and I are concerned. The one who equated what Obama has done to what the Nazis did was no other than docg. Let me reiterate what Obama is accused of:

        regularly subjecting whomever he wants whenever he chooses to espionage, torture, kidnapping, blackmail and assassination

        1. docg

          If that’s what you really believe, Mr. Mexico, then I pity you. Go to school and learn something about critical thinking. As opposed to “thinking” from the seat of your pants.

          1. skippy

            @docg…. what a completely vacuous nothing burger retort.

            skippy… your stripe is always best… self described… see your own comment.

          2. from Mexico

            Let’s try setting the histrionics aside and getting back to the subject of Harrison’s article.

            The character assassination of Arendt by the Jewish elite and their bounteous corps of professional liars and bumsuckers, and the extreme measures they went to and still go to distract attention away from their own role in the Final Solution, is really too much. Since Eichmann’s trial made it impossible for them to deny their complicity in the Holocaust, and made shooting the message impossible, they instead elected to do the next best thing, which is to shoot the messenger.

            As Arendt explains in her postscript, Eichmann in Jerusalem “contains a trial report.” The principal sources she used were:

            The transcript of the trial proceedings which was distributed to the press in Jerusalem.

            2) The transcript in German of Eichmann’s interrogation by the police, recorded on tape, then typed, and the typescript presented to Eichmann, who corrected it in his own hand.

            3) The documents submitted by the prosecution, and the “legal material” made available by the prosecution.

            4) The sixteen sworn affidavits by witnesses originally called by the defense, although part of their testimony was subsequently used by the prosecution.

            5) Finally, a manuscript of seventy typewritten pages written by Eichmann himself. It was submitted as evidence by the prosecution and accepted by the court.

            Arendt goes on to explain that: “Thus, the documents I have quoted were with very few exceptions presented in evidence at the trial (in which case they constituted primary sources).”

            That the judge in the Manning trial has gone to great lengths to insure that many of the above types of informaiton will be “top secret” and not made available to reporters or the public, is an indicaiton of her commitment that no inconvenient truths slip out as they did in the Eichmann trial.

            Arendt then goes on to point out that, and I quote her at length here, because what Arendt had to say is eminently germane to the Manning trial and its aftermath:

            Even before its publication, this book became both the center of a controversy and the object of an organized campaign. It is only natural that the campaign, conducted with all the well-known means of image-making and opinion-manipulation, got much more attention than the controversy, so that the latter was somehow swallowed up by and drowned in the artificial noise of the former. This became especially clear when a strange mixture of the two, in almost identical phraseology — as though the pieces written against the book (and more frequently against its author) came “out of a mimeographing machine” — was carried from America to England and then to Europe, where the book was not yet even available. And this was possible because the clamor centered on the “image” of a book which was never written, and touched upon subjects that often had not only not been mentioned by me but had never occurred to me before.

            The debate — if that is what it is — was by no means devoid of interest. Manipulations of opinion, insofar as they are inspired by well-defined interests, have limited goals; their effect, however, if they happen to touch upon an issue of authentic concern, is no longer subject to their control and may easily produce consequences they never foresaw or intended. It now appeared that the era of the Hitler regime, with its gigantic, unprecedented crimes, constituted an “unmastered past” not only for the German people or for the Jews all over the world, but for the rest of the world, which had not forgotten this great catastrophe in the heart of Europe either, and had also been unable to come to terms with it. Moreover — and this was perhaps even less expected — general moral questions, with all their intricacies and modern complexities, which I would never have suspected would haunt men’s minds today and weigh heavily on their souls, stood suddenly in the foreground of public concern.

            The controversy began by calling attention to the conduct of the Jewish people during the years of the Final Solution, thus following up the question, first raised by the Israeli prosecutor, of whether the Jews could or should have defended themselves. I had dismissed that question as silly and cruel, since it testified to a fatal ignorance of the conditions at the time. It has now been discussed to exhaustion, and the most amazing conclusions have been drawn. The well-known historico-sociological construct of a “ghetto mentality” (which in Israel has taken its place in history textbooks and in this country has been espoused chiefly by the psychologist Bruno Bettelheim — against the furious protest of official American Judaism) has been repeatedly dragged in to explain behavior which was not at all confined to the Jewish people and which therefore cannot be explained by specifically Jewish factors. The suggestions proliferated until someone who evidently found the whole discussion too dull had the brilliant idea of evoking Freudian theories and attributing to the whole Jewish people a “death wish” — unconscious, of course. This was the unexpected conclusion certain reviewers chose to draw from the “image” of a book, created by certain interest groups, in which I allegedly had claimed that the Jews had murdered themselves. And why had I told such a monstrously implausible lie? Out of “self-hatred,” of course.

            Since the role of the Jewish leadership had come up at the trial, and since I had reported and commented on it, it was inevitable that it too should be discussed. This, in my opinion, is a serious question, but the debate has contributed little to its clarification. As can be seen from the recent trial in Israel at which a certain Hirsch Birnblat, a former chief of the Jewish police in a Polish town and now a conductor at the Israeli Opera, first was sentenced by a district court to five years’ imprisonment, and then was exonerated by the Supreme Court in Jerusalem, whose unanimous opinion indirectly exonerated the Jewish councils in general, the Jewish establishment bitterly divided on the issue. In the debate, however, the most vocal participants were those who either identified the Jewish people with its leadership – in striking contrast to the clear distinction made in almost all the reports of survivors, which may be summed up in the words of a former inmate of Theresienstadt: “The Jewish people as a whole behaved magnificently. Only the leadership failed” – or justified the Jewish functionaries by citing all the commendable services they had rendered before the war, and above all before the era of the Final Solution, as though there were no difference between helping Jews to emigrate and helping the Nazis to deport them.

            While these issues had indeed some connection with this book, although they were inflated out of all proportion, there were others which had no relation to it whatsoever. There was, for instance, a hot discussion of the German resistance movement from the beginning of the Hitler regime on, which I naturally did not discuss, since the question of Eichmann’s conscience, and that of the situation around him, relates only to the period of the war and the Final Solution. But there were more fantastic items. Quite a number of people began to debate the question of whether the victims of persecution may not always be “uglier” than their murderers; or whether anyone who was not present is entitled “to sit in judgment” over the past; or whether the defendant or the victim holds the center of the state in a trial. On the latter point, some went so far as to assert not only that I was wrong in being interested in what kind of person Eichmann was, but that he should not have been allowed to speak at all – that is, presumably, that the trial should have been conducted without any defense.

            As is frequently the case in discussions that are conducted with a great show of emotion, the down-to-earth interests of certain groups, whose excitement is entirely concerned with factual matters and who therefore try to distort the facts, become quickly and inextricably involved with the untrammeled inspirations of intellectuals who, on the contrary, are not in the least interested in facts but treat them merely as a springboard for “ideas.” But even in these sham battles, there could often be detected a certain seriousness, a degree of authentic concern, and this even in the contributions by people who boasted that they had not read the book and promised that they never would read it.

            Compared with these debates, which wandered so far afield, the book itself dealt with a sadly limited subject. The report of a trial can discuss only the matters which were treated in the course of the trial, or which in the interests of justice should have been treated. If the general situation of a country in which the trial takes place happens to be important to the conduct of the trial, it too must be taken into account… The focus of every trial is upon the person of the defendant, a man of flesh and blood with an individual history, with an always unique set of qualities, peculiarities, behavior patterns, and circumstances. All the things that go beyond that, such as the history of the Jewish people in the dispersion, and of anti-Semitism, or the conduct of the German people and other peoples, or the ideologies of the time and the governmental apparatus of the Third Reich, affect the trial only insofar as they form the background and the conditions under which the defendant committed his acts. All the things that the defendant did not come into contact with, or that did not influence him, must be omitted from the proceedings of the trial and consequently from the report on it.


            And the question of individual guilt or innocence, the act of meting out justice to both the defendant and the victim, are the only things at stake in a criminal court. The Eichmann trial was no exception, even though the court here was confronted with a crime it could not find in the lawbooks and with a criminal whose like was unknown in any court, at least prior to the Nuremberg Trials. The present report deals with nothing but the extent to which the court in Jerusalem succeeded in fulfilling the demands of justice.

      6. jrs

        “The idea that the cage was there as part of some political theater is not only wrong, but absurd.”

        It may be wrong, but actually no it’s not absurd. You’re misusing language.

        As for Obama versus Hitler is the difference the scale of the assasinations or whom the targets are? One is one too many.

  4. from Mexico

    @ “NSA leaks: UK blocks crucial espionage talks between US and Europe”

    After WWII, the UK and Europe emerged as junior partners in the US/NATO neo-imperial project. Europe had lost the economic, financial and military, as well as intellectual and moral, superiority which it had laid claim to in an earlier era. Halting the advance of the Evil Empire (the Soviet Union) was part and parcel of this imperial project, but mainly it entailed the rule (by client states) and plunder of the third world.

    Now that a new world order, which some believe will be multipolar and some bipolar (the US and China), is shaping up, where does that leave Europe? The truth is that Europe has little to bring to the table. There are no abundant natrual resources, and a divided Europe does not have a sufficient population mass to be a major player on the evolving world stage.

    In the wars to control the oil and natural gas reserves of Central Asia and the Middle East, it looks like the US/NATO alliance is coming up with the short end of the stick. The US/NATO alliance has suffered two disastrous failures in the region — the Iraq and Afghanistan wars — and its authority in the region is being challenged on many fronts (e.g., Egypt and Turkey). Will it be able to continue to control the energy reserves in the region so as to control much of the energy flow into Europe?

    In the near future, it seems Europe is going to have to ask some serious quesitons as to where it fits in an evolving world order.

    1. from Mexico

      Bolivia latest country to offer asylum to Snowden

      A trio of left-leaning Latin American nations to varying degrees say they would welcome the U.S. intelligence leaker in their country. Venezuela and Bolivia have offered asylum to Snowden and Nicaragua is willing to consider it.

      If little Bolivia can stand up to the US, and France, Germany and the UK cannot, this just goes to show how precious little sovereignty the US’s perritos falderos in Europe really have.

  5. David Lentini

    Get Ready for “COIN Justice” (Read: Despostism)

    The Tech. Review demonstrates the coming end of justice and the confusion of statistics with science. In a jsut soceity, criminal guit required a demonstration of scienter and mens rea, i.e., the willfullness of the accused. Demonstrating willfullness in turn required demonstrating cause and effect—that the accused’s actions were at least the actual cause of the crime.

    As with any demonstration of cause and effect, statistical arguments can be critical in making a case just as such arguments are used in scientific research. But in both the crminal law and in science, practitioners take care to ensure that they don’t confuse correlation with causation or fall for the hasty generalization. This requires rigorous checks on the use of the statistical arguments and the conclusions drawn from those aguments, such as demonstrations of past behavior, motive, etc.

    Sadly, in both criminal law and science, the statisticians and so-called “data scientists” are muscling in, arugin that correlations and statistical measures of association are just as good as rigorous demonsration of causation. The motive is simple&msdash;there’s a lot of “data” out there, computers are now fast enough and capacious enought to hold all of that “data”, and there is a market hungry for more “information” about the subjects characterized by that “data”.

    I put these terms in quotations to make a point: If you look up the words “data” and “information” you will find there they refer to statements that are true or likely to be true. That was often the case in the early days of computing, when computing time was expensive and therefore used only on reliable statements (i.e., real data). Today, however, we assign numbers to all sorts of events and subjects without any clear understanding of what those assignments mean. We then further compound that muddle by manipulating the numbers using computer algorithms without asking whether those algorithms are appropriate for the task at hand. In the end, we obtian mathmatically true statements, as must be the case if the mathematical operations are done correctly, but have no reliable understanding of the subject. As my computer instrutor in high school used to say” Garbage In, Garbage Out”.

    That wisdom is being lost today. There’s too much money to be made with statistical charlatanism and too many careers depending on publishing work that looks rigorous but is in fact bullshit.

    We’ll pay a hugh price for producing generations who don’t understand computing, mathematics, or sciecnce.

    1. from Mexico

      Face it, we’ve come full circle back to the same kind of “science” practiced by 12th-century Neoplatonic theologians and the same kind of “justice” practiced in the Salem witch trials.

  6. Inverness

    The Counterpunch article contains some historical inaccuracies. Eichmann was kept in glass container for his protection — otherwise, he could have been attacked by inflamed holocaust survivors and their families. Nor was Eichmann kept heavily shackled.

    Another contention: unlike many other Nazi criminals, Eichmann was actually in charge of the elimination of Jews, therefore it isn’t ludicrous that the Jewish state would want to put him on trial.

    1. Inverness

      Just some historical links: Eichmann certainly doesn’t appear shackled to me, as was claimed: (trial footage).

      Nor was he shackled in his bullet-proof glass booth. Yes, bullet-proof. For his protection.

      Furthermore, Eichmann’s guards were not of European descent: there was the Israeli courts’ fear that those from that continent would be a direct threat to Eichmann’s life.

    2. charles sereno

      A couple of obvious points. It’s arguable that Eichmann could have been protected by simple screening of a limited audience, thus avoiding doubts about psychological motivation. Second, the idea of a “Jewish state” is indeed not ludicrous (it exists). That it should exist is quite debatable.

      1. Inverness

        My point was to inform about historical inaccuracies in the article, actually. Since the article gets factual information wrong, it doesn’t help the author’s argument.

        1. Inverness

          In other words, Charles, I wasn’t questioning whether there should be a Jewish state (doing a little headscratching)…you seem to have misunderstood my goal, which was fact-checking.

  7. Bev

    Another firedoglake article:

    Spread this from a full spectrum:

    Come Saturday Morning: Reclaiming Our LIBERT-E

    By: Phoenix Woman Saturday July 6, 2013

    Democratic United States Representative John Conyers and his Republican colleague Justin Amash don’t agree on a lot of things. But they are, like most of us, united in being aghast at all the government snooping being done to us, for us, against us, and on everyone else in the world. Unlike most of us, they’re in a position to do something about it — or at the very least shame those Beltway officials who would perpetuate this snooping.

    To that end, they’ve introduced H.R. 2399, the “Limiting Internet and Blanket Electronic Review of Telecommunications and Email Act,” or the LIBERT-E Act for short.

    Here’s how it would work:

    The first reform, in Section 2 of the LIBERT-E Act, modifies access to certain records for foreign intelligence and terrorism investigations. Specifically, Section 2 would amend Section 215 of the PATRIOT Act to prevent the mass collection of records that are not explicitly relevant to an authorized foreign intelligence investigation, terrorism investigation, or covert intelligence activities.

    Presently, to obtain a court order under Section 215 of the PATRIOT Act, the government only needs to show that the records are “relevant” to an investigation. News reports suggest, however, that the government’s view of what is “relevant” includes the records of every telephone call. Section 2 of the LIBERT-E Act would raise the relevancy standard for the government to one requiring “specific and articulable” facts on a given investigation. In addition, Section 2 mandates that for any records to be collected they must be material to the investigation and pertain only to the individual under investigation.

    Simply put, the government should be required to show that the records it seeks are in fact material to a particular concern.

    The second set of reforms that the LIBERT-E Act puts into place deals with transparency. For too long, a secretive FISA court has essentially rubber-stamped all of the NSA’s surveillance requests. Section 3 of the LIBERT-E Act requires the Attorney General to make available to the public unclassified summaries of significant decisions by the FISA court, within 180 days of Congress receiving them. At the Congressional level, Section 3 also mandates that the Attorney General makes all information provided to the House and Senate Intelligence and Judiciary Committees available to every Member of Congress. Both of these measures will take the entirety of the decision-making process out of the backroom and provide needed public, as well as Congressional, oversight.

    Sounds good to me. Of course, that’s probably why you’re only hearing about this now, from this blog post — because it’s such a good idea that no TV news program would touch it.

    Let’s see if we can spread the word and do an end run around the censorship.

    1. docg

      Sounds good to me too. Initially I expressed some skepticism regarding Snowden’s complaints, because not all the facts were in. Well, now, for the most part, they do seem to be in, and it looks like he was right. I don’t see any vast government conspiracy at work in all this. But I do see some serious bungling that badly needs to be corrected.

  8. barrisj

    John Lanchester’s article in the LRB should be required reading for US bank regulators who believe than fines and “deferred prosecution” agreements can change malevolent and malfeasant behaviour of essentially a group of sociopaths, viz., banksters and their ilk. When unethical and criminal conduct is the normative conduct within a powerful economic element of society, how can anything sort of long-term incarceration of the perps be expected to alter these patterns of willful criminal conduct? Off with their heads!!

  9. charles sereno

    I’m flabbergasted by the lack of reporting on the Anglo Tapes here in the USA. I’ve heard some snippets but haven’t been able to find a transcript. Help, anyone? This stuff is dynamite!

  10. charles sereno

    Lac-Megantic explosion: I just happened to be in this vicinity on my 1st visit to Quebec (Victoriaville, Quebec City) just a week ago. This tragedy should bring attention to the dangers of oil transport whether by pipeline or rail.

  11. Mark P.

    Customs and Border Protection is using its authorization for border use of Predator drones as a wedge for an eight-fold increase in nationwide use by other agencies ….

    ‘Customs & Border Protection Logged Eight-Fold Increase in Drone Surveillance for Other Agencies

    ‘Recently released daily flight logs from Customs & Border Protection (CPB) show the agency has sharply increased the number of missions its 10 Predator drones have flown on behalf of state, local and non-CPB federal agencies. Yet, despite this increase—eight-fold between 2010 and 2012—CBP has failed to explain how it’s protecting our privacy from unwarranted drone surveillance.

    ‘EFF received the three years of flight logs, a 2010 “Concept of Operations” report about the Predator program, and other records in response to our Freedom of Information Act lawsuit against the agency. In that lawsuit we asked for specific information on the agency’s program to loan out its drones to local, state and federal agencies.

    ‘According to the documents, CBP already appears to be flying drones well within the Southern and Northern US borders, and for a wide variety of non-border patrol reasons. What’s more — the agency is planning to increase its Predator drone fleet to 24 and its drone surveillance to 24 hours per day / 7 days per week by 2016.

    ‘As the Concept of Operations report notes, CBP’s goal is that its drone data will be “persistently available” (p. 21) and interoperable (p. 29) — not just within CBP, but to other agencies, and also possibly to other countries. CBP plans that its “UAS will provide assured monitoring of entities along land borders, inland seas, littorals and high seas with sufficient frequency, continuity, accuracy, spectral diversity, and data content to produce actionable information.” ….’

    More via the link (above)

    1. Mark P.

      Including this datum —

      ‘As we noted earlier in a separate blog post, one of the most surprising pieces of information revealed in this report is that CBP has considered equipping its predators with “non-lethal weapons designed to immobilize” targets of interest. Predators are designed to carry weapons for use in wars abroad, but this is the first we’ve heard of a federal agency proposing using weapons domestically.’

  12. skippy

    Religion and science have long had disagreements — from Galileo, who was tried for teaching that the Earth was not the center of the universe, to battles over teaching evolution in public schools. But when it comes to greed, religion and science share this view: It is not good for you.

    “Greed never allows you to think you have enough; it always destroys you by making you strive ever harder for more,” Rabbi Benjamin Blech writes in “Taking Stock: A Spiritual Guide to Rising Above Life’s Ups and Down.”

    It’s hard to find a positive slant on greed. Except, of course, for that handsome Wall Street guy Gordon Gekko. “Greed, for lack of a better word, is good. Greed is right. Greed works. Greed clarifies and cuts through to the essence of the evolutionary spirit,” Gekko, played to an Oscar win by Michael Douglas, says in the 1987 film “Wall Street.”

    But though the film was meant to be a cautionary tale about the destruction greed can create, Douglas and actor Charlie Sheen, who played Gekko’s mentee, have said people tell them that those characters inspired them to become stockbrokers.

    Paul Zak, a neuroeconomist and professor at Claremont Graduate University, might understand. He talked about greed as part of a lecture series titled “Science and the Seven Deadly Sins” at the New York Academy of Sciences.

    “The seven deadly sins are still deadly because they separate us from other people,” he said. “They are all about putting ‘me’ first, and that is maladaptive for social creatures like us.”

    Zak has done studies that have manipulated brain chemistry in human beings to show that oxytocin causes people to be moral. “There is a growing body of research that has found that greed is bad for us, and that moral values are a necessary element in the conduct of business,” Zak said.

    “The Gordon Gekkos are predators who take the quick payoff,” he said. “Although they do serve a useful purpose by keeping other players on their toes and raising efficiency through competition, market participants for the most part avoid them, preferring to do business with the Warren Buffetts — hard-driving businessmen, but known for fair play and creating long-term value.”

    Zak said that his research suggests that people who are greedy have brains that work differently. “Their character traits are similar to those of psychopaths. They simply do not care about others the way most people do, and the dysfunctional processing of oxytocin in their brains appears to be one reason for this.”

    Does greed have an evolutionary advantage?

    “Greed, by definition, means a selfish desire for significantly more than you need — which is different than wanting what is actually enough — even if that is to the detriment of others,” said Dr. Jeffrey P. Kahn, clinical associate professor of psychiatry at Weill Cornell Medical College. “From that point of view, I doubt that greed has an evolutionary advantage, though individuals do need enough resources to survive in order to pass on their DNA.”

    Can greed ever be good?

    Zak said that it depends on how you define it. Being greedy with your time can lead to good, for instance. “We admire excellence in sports, and we know that to be a star athlete you have to devote hours and hours to practice. This probably does not make you the best family person,” Zak said.

    It took Michelangelo four years to paint the Sistine Chapel. It took years of research to find a polio vaccine. Is this greed? Zak would argue no, because we all benefit from great art and scientific advances. And Jonas Salk, who invented the polio vaccine in 1955, chose not to patent the polio vaccine so it could be affordable and available to everyone. It has been estimated he could have made $7 billion on it. He was not greedy.,0,7561584.story

    skippy… now if only the majority of the D.C. beltway mob did not resemble a sanatorium for the afflicted empathy challenged… oh well… sigh~

    1. prostratedragon

      I had a contribution to Lambert’s My Country ‘Tis of Thee rewrite that was deadthreaded before I noticed the date, to wit–

      The end of an intermediate verse:

      Who needs old equities
      When one can pile on fees
      And rates that merely tease
      To fleece them all?

      Does need a big finish [to the whole thing], eh?

    2. F. Beard

      You Progressives are something! You support a money system that allows legal theft of purchasing power and then complain about greed!

      And speaking of Gordon Gekko, how many leveraged buyouts are financed by the government-backed counterfeiting cartel, the banking system?

      1. skippy

        Labeling others again – progressive – or any other stinking pennant much?

        Your memory fails as I’ve made effort to inform you, I’m only human, one that disavows all isms and ologys. The lack of data does not bend my mind to *make stuff up* for the lack of it.

        skippy… So until you can understand that the – Institution of Government[s – is filled with people, people that have a shared pathological ideological perspective with Banks et al, your proclamations about “government backed” is moot methinks.

        You could not pass an electron through the two of them.

        PS. Your going to get your privatized world, for a bit, the Gawd of business is pleased… so should you… eh.

        1. F. Beard

          PS. Your going to get your privatized world, for a bit, skippy

          Privatized? Are you joking? The banks absolutely depend on government PRIVILEGE.

          I suppose Progressives thought they were scoring a big victory when they exchanged being crucified on a “cross of gold” for being crucified on a “cross of government-backed credit?”

          “Ya can’t cheat an honest man?” If so, what does that say about Progressives?

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