Links 9/16/13

Queens (NY) Librarian Reads to Alligator to Reward Summer Reading School Library Journal

Is there a media blackout on the fracking flood disaster in Colorado? Bluedaze

Twitter Goes Silent With Confidential IPO Filing Daily Beast. Via the JOBS Act.

U.N. to release findings of Syria chemical attack inquiry LA Times

Kerry tells Israel that Syria accord is no prelude to Iran deal WaPo

Barack Obama warns Iran that US is still prepared to take military action Guardian

“Natural Ability”

Summers has Withdrawn Economist’s View

Summers over Felix Salmon, Reuters. The Fed isn’t political? Like the Supreme Court?

Victory on Summers Emboldens Liberals Online WSJ

Summers Out, Yellen In? Tim Duy’s Fed Watch. Obama would be petty to throw Yellin aside.

Yellen’s nomination is not a done deal Sober Look

With Larry Summers out, what’s next? Politico

Who’s Going to Miss Larry? Not Asia Bloomberg

Obama to mark fifth anniversary of financial crisis, highlight response The Hill. Monday from the Rose Garden. Pass the popcorn.

Five Years after Market Crash, U.S. Economy Seen as ‘No More Secure’ Pew Research

Stocks Are Increasingly Vulnerable To A Severe Decline Business Insider

Why We Didn’t Learn Enough From the Financial Crisis HBR

How Detroit went broke: The answers may surprise you – and don’t blame Coleman Young Detroit Free Press

Joe Stiglitz: The People Who Break the Rules Have Raked in Huge Profits and Wealth and It’s Sickening Our Politics Remarks to the AFL-CIO convention.

PHOENIX LIGHT SF LIMITED vs CREDIT SUISSE AG | NYSC – investors are only now becoming aware that, while they thought they were purchasing “mortgaged-backed” securities, in fact they were purchasing non-mortgaged backed securities

8,500 Sq Ft Home Faces Wrecking Ball to Build 9,095 Sq Ft Home; 22,000 Sq Ft House Next on Tear-Down List Global Economic Analysis

SIFUABS Eschaton. Acronym watch.

Could the Debt Ceiling Fight Eliminate the Trade Deficit and Create Millions of Jobs CERPP (and see).

Study: “Trade” Deal Would Mean a Pay Cut for 90% of U.S. Workers Public Citizen

3D Printed Guns Won’t Hurt You – but Jobs of 50 Million Women Could Be in Danger Truthout

Mismatches in Race to the Top Limit Educational Improvement EPI. But what would you expect from policy built on scab labor?

Inside the mind of NSA chief Gen Keith Alexander Glenn Greenwald, Guardian. “Information Dominance Center”?!?! Fap fap fap fap fap.

‘Follow the Money’: NSA Spies on International Payments Der Spelgel

Asia, Credit and the End of Stuff Nemo’s Blog

‘I’m not your real mother’ – Chinese mother lies to daughter to encourage independence South China Morning Post

Cambodian strongman Hun Sen meets opposition after protest death Reuters

Philippine Death Toll Rises to 62 in Siege as Locals Flee Bloomberg

Libyan Prime Minister Hopes Arrest of Strike Leaders will End Oil Protests

A new two-step John Quiggin

Russell Brand and the GQ awards: ‘It’s amazing how absurd it seems’ Russell Brand, Guardian

Jonathan Franzen: what’s wrong with the modern world Guardian. On Karl Kraus.

Beyond Homo Economicus Project Syndicate

A Sense of Homecoming The Archdruid Report

Antidote du jour (furzy mouse):


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About Lambert Strether

Readers, I have had a correspondent characterize my views as realistic cynical. Let me briefly explain them. I believe in universal programs that provide concrete material benefits, especially to the working class. Medicare for All is the prime example, but tuition-free college and a Post Office Bank also fall under this heading. So do a Jobs Guarantee and a Debt Jubilee. Clearly, neither liberal Democrats nor conservative Republicans can deliver on such programs, because the two are different flavors of neoliberalism (“Because markets”). I don’t much care about the “ism” that delivers the benefits, although whichever one does have to put common humanity first, as opposed to markets. Could be a second FDR saving capitalism, democratic socialism leashing and collaring it, or communism razing it. I don’t much care, as long as the benefits are delivered. To me, the key issue — and this is why Medicare for All is always first with me — is the tens of thousands of excess “deaths from despair,” as described by the Case-Deaton study, and other recent studies. That enormous body count makes Medicare for All, at the very least, a moral and strategic imperative. And that level of suffering and organic damage makes the concerns of identity politics — even the worthy fight to help the refugees Bush, Obama, and Clinton’s wars created — bright shiny objects by comparison. Hence my frustration with the news flow — currently in my view the swirling intersection of two, separate Shock Doctrine campaigns, one by the Administration, and the other by out-of-power liberals and their allies in the State and in the press — a news flow that constantly forces me to focus on matters that I regard as of secondary importance to the excess deaths. What kind of political economy is it that halts or even reverses the increases in life expectancy that civilized societies have achieved? I am also very hopeful that the continuing destruction of both party establishments will open the space for voices supporting programs similar to those I have listed; let’s call such voices “the left.” Volatility creates opportunity, especially if the Democrat establishment, which puts markets first and opposes all such programs, isn’t allowed to get back into the saddle. Eyes on the prize! I love the tactical level, and secretly love even the horse race, since I’ve been blogging about it daily for fourteen years, but everything I write has this perspective at the back of it.


  1. AbyNormal

    i’ve read the Girafe is most vulnerable when drinking, yet…

    “That’s the thing about being a victim; you start to think it’ll happen to you on a regular basis. It’s living with the reality of your own vulnerability, and it sucks.”
    lehane/a drink before war

      1. Emma

        Peace signs would be a REAL blessing (& excuse the pun moment…) but the giraffe is in reality, an endangered species. Aside from which, the most common type, the netted giraffe or Somalian giraffe spends most of its’ time “netted” in a zoo, as opposed to Southern Somalia from where it originally roamed free.
        Interestingly, referring back to what Diptherio suggested, the giraffe took the shape of the Qilin centuries ago in China, after the Chinese explorer Zheng He visited East Africa. The Qilin is the good omen of peace and prosperity.
        Finally, referring back to the pic yesterday, I shall simply say only that both Somalia and Turkmenistan were part of the Silk Road routes – one being land, the other sea.

  2. ex-PFC Chuck

    With all due respect to one of the most astute commenters here, if I were a betting person I’d put ten-to-one odds that Obama’s Fed nomination would be ABY: Anybody But Yellen.

    1. AbyNormal

      Here Hear…

      In the long run, outsourcing is another form of trade that benefits the U.S. economy by giving us cheaper ways to do things.~ABY

      It slightly worries me that when people find a problem, they rush to judgment of what to do.~ABY

      In 1977, when I started my first job at the Federal Reserve Board as a staff economist in the Division of International Finance, it was an article of faith in central banking that secrecy about monetary policy decisions was the best policy: Central banks, as a rule, did not discuss these decisions, let alone their future policy intentions.~ABY

    1. Joe

      That is awful. Get in a wreck, run for help and get killed by the police.

      Here in Athens, Ga. the police killed a man running down the street stark naked a few years ago. He was on drugs (thus the odd behavior) but so what? They claimed that they thought he had a concealed weapon. WTF?

      The case went to trial and somehow the police were found not guilty.

      Like the NWA song. 9-1-1’s a joke in your town.

      1. Klassy!

        At least they charged the officer. I don’t think they’ve even named the officers involved in the Times Square shootout that hurt two bystanders.

    2. anon y'mouse

      nearly every other year around here (Portland, OR) the police kill someone who is mentally ill. sometimes they are “resisting arrest” (which requires that 5 burly men basically sit on the detainee and crush his ribs) and sometimes they are simply wandering around an empty street with a knife in their hand threatening to commit suicide. other times, it is “being arrested while black” which translates into Police-ese as “I thought he had a gun in the wasteband of his pants”.

      police here fire also like to open fire on speeding vehicles in residential neighborhoods after liquor store robberies. they think the wild west days never ended, apparently.

  3. rich

    E-ZPasses Get Read All Over New York (Not Just At Toll Booths)

    After spotting a police car with two huge boxes on its trunk — that turned out to be license-plate-reading cameras — a man in New Jersey became obsessed with the loss of privacy for vehicles on American roads. (He’s not the only one.) The man, who goes by the Internet handle “Puking Monkey,” did an analysis of the many ways his car could be tracked and stumbled upon something rather interesting: his E-ZPass, which he obtained for the purpose of paying tolls, was being used to track his car in unexpected places, far away from any toll booths.

    Puking Monkey is an electronics tinkerer, so he hacked his RFID-enabled E-ZPass to set off a light and a “moo cow” every time it was being read. Then he drove around New York. His tag got milked multiple times on the short drive from Times Square to Madison Square Garden in mid-town Manhattan…

    This isn’t a part of the Lower Manhattan Security Initiative, the millions-dollar project emulating London’s Ring of Steel with extreme surveillance. It’s part of Midtown in Motion, an initiative to feed information from lots of sensors into New York’s traffic management center. A spokesperson for the New York Department of Transportation, Scott Gastel, says the E-Z Pass readers are on highways across the city, and on streets in Manhattan, Brooklyn and Staten Island, and have been in use for years. The city uses the data from the readers to provide real-time traffic information, as for this tool. The DoT was not forthcoming about what exactly was read from the passes or how long geolocation information from the passes was kept. Notably, the fact that E-ZPasses will be used as a tracking device outside of toll payment, is not disclosed anywhere that I could see in the terms and conditions.

    When I talked to the E-ZPass Inter-agency Group — the umbrella association that oversees the use of the pay-toll-paying tags in 15 different states — it said New York is the only state that is employing this inventive re-use of the tags. (That statement will be tested: Puking Monkey lent his hacked pass to a friend going on a road trip to see if it went off unexpectedly in any other states.)

      1. subgenius

        …also known as a faraday cage. but these only help you.

        …words for the wise “phase-locked loop” and “radio repeater”. That way you do good public service (*warning: legality may vary)

  4. from Mexico

    @ “Beyond Homo Economicus”

    Tania Singer says:

    It is time to replace the framework of homo economicus with a model that reflects humans’ capacity for altruism and pro-social behavior. By illuminating opportunities for human cooperation, such a framework would provide a useful foundation for political and economic systems that succeed where existing arrangements have failed.

    Even though homo economicus has only slightly more basis in reality than Ptolemy’s geocentric model or the Garden of Eden, it will be defended to the death by TPTB, not unlike those former ruling mythologies were. Homo economicus, after all, is what informs people like Paul Volcker, Alan Greenspan, and Ben Bernanke and gives moral and intellectual justification to our existing social and economic order.

    Christopher Hayes article “Hip Heterodoxy” is still very timely, since it describes the jihad which neoclassical economicsts have declared on folks like Singer:

    If history is any guide, however, when the gap between reality and the ruling mythology grows too wide most people simply cease to be believe in the ruling mythology, despite the draconian efforts of TPTB to preserve it. What is new, however, is that TPTB now have the power to destroy the earth, a power which they heretofore did not have.

    1. Saddam Smith


      This time it IS different.

      No status quo goes down without an enormous fight, as history demonstrates again and again. This time around the stakes are higher than ever because the power and reach attained by TPTB is truly global and could, as you say, wipe out most life on earth. And it really comes down to core beliefs like homo economicus, Perpetual Economic Growth, elitism, and a few others. Until we have moved to a cultural space where these foundational assumptions are generally derided, there can be no chance of pulling ourselves, Baron von Münchhausen style, out of our self-made swamp.

        1. JEHR

          I loved the first part of the video your link points too. Then after the first section, there came many ads that reminded me of why I don’t like to watch TV. Didn’t watch any more of the video.

          Now I know how corporations are going to ruin the Internet–with ads like the ones on this video!!!

    2. anon y'mouse

      interesting article.

      while they claim that certain economists are heretics, they stealthily incorporate a lot of their observations, while also sterilizing most of the critique out.

      if you can’t beat your enemy, co-opt his ideas?

  5. ohmyheck

    Generation W for Whistleblower

    “…generation W has seen that complicity within the surveillance state can give rise to evil as well — not the horrific evil that Eichmann’s bureaucratic efficiency brought us, but still an Orwellian future that must be avoided at all costs.”

    “So has the younger generation lost its moral compass?…Clearly, there is a moral principle at work in the actions of the leakers, whistle-blowers and hacktivists and those who support them. I would also argue that that moral principle has been clearly articulated, and it may just save us from a dystopian future.”

    This is a very well-written article, in its entirely. worth the click, imho.

    1. JTFaraday

      Agree. Great article:

      “In “Eichmann in Jerusalem,” one of the most poignant and important works of 20th-century philosophy, Hannah Arendt made an observation about what she called “the banality of evil.” One interpretation of this holds that it was not an observation about what a regular guy Adolf Eichmann seemed to be, but rather a statement about what happens when people play their “proper” roles within a system, following prescribed conduct with respect to that system, while remaining blind to the moral consequences of what the system was doing — or at least compartmentalizing and ignoring those consequences.”

      I recently realized there is a great dramatic representation of this in the film The Reader, where the leading lady insists she was “just doing her job.” In the film, the kind of blinkered, limited vision referenced here becomes the very definition of illiteracy. It would also seem some people are earmarked for the role.

      I always find it fascinating, these people who say at least the totalitarian regimes had job guarantees. I’m always like really? “Jobs” are the most important thing?

      May you live in interesting times.

  6. Garrett Pace

    Tearing down a house to build a slightly larger house:

    Reminds me of Luke 12:

    16 And he spake a parable unto them, saying, The ground of a certain rich man brought forth plentifully:

    17 And he thought within himself, saying, What shall I do, because I have no room where to bestow my fruits?

    18 And he said, This will I do: I will pull down my barns, and build greater; and there will I bestow all my fruits and my goods.

    19 And I will say to my soul, Soul, thou hast much goods laid up for many years; take thine ease, beat, drink, and be merry.

    20 But God said unto him, Thou fool, this night thy soul shall be required of thee: then whose shall those things be, which thou hast provided?

    21 So is he that layeth up treasure for himself, and is not rich toward God.

  7. ambrit

    Dear ohmyheck;
    I’m not so sure about the conclusion the author comes to.
    In the case of the Eichmann evil, plenty of ‘movers and shakers’ in the “Free West” had more than enough evidence to figure out what was going on in the Reich. Yet it took an act of naked aggression, the attack on Pearl Harbour, to get things moving in the right direction, with sufficient force. The force of isolationist inertia in America was still strong enough to somewhat tie Rosevelts hands concerning what he and like minded folks could get America to do to help the English Empire. Are we giong to have to suffer some sort of modern day Pearl Harbour event to galvanize the general populace into action, in its’ own behalf?
    Human nature, still going strong after twenty thousand years!

    1. Procopius

      I’m afraid that if we had such an event, TPTB would make the same use of it they made of 9/11. That is, divert everybody from possibly helpful activities, to further increasing their grip on the levers of power.

  8. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Trade deal…pay cut for 90% of US workers.

    My goodness, that’s keeping wage inflation under control.

    And more ZIRP for the big guys. It also makes debt slavery a little more affordable for those who are still undecided.

  9. ScottS

    Schadenfreude alert:
    The Fed Succession: Goodbye Larry Summers — And Good Riddance Forbes

    This section:

    Stiglitz has also pointed out that Summers’s record of egregious error goes back at least to the mid 1990s, when he encouraged East Asian nations quickly to liberalize their capital markets, a development that led straight to the Asian financial crisis.

    made me think that Summers may not be an arsonist, but he always seems to be around when a fire happens.

  10. Antifa

    A couple of links on the Big Bank’s newly declared war on Credit Unions, coming to Congress this week.

    The TBTF banks want their fair share of profits which, as we all know by now is, “ALL OF IT!”

    You can sign a petition against this lobbying effort here:

    1. Tim Mason

      You may have reasons to despair of the American people – but this is not one of them. The readership of Time magazine’s overseas editions is very different from the home readership. They are, by and large, people who speak and read a second language – English – with a certain degree of ease. They probably came to Time through the educational system, for it is extensively used in English Language classrooms, both in High School and in University or Business School, where it lives in symbiosis with The Economist. They are not going to read the magazine for entertainment, but for news coverage and language extension. It’s a niche, and Time knows it : they offer large educational discounts, and do their best to entice teachers into using their articles in class. So the covers are going to be aimed at people who at least like to think of themselves as serious seekers after enlghtenment.

  11. Nathanael

    “PHOENIX LIGHT SF LIMITED vs CREDIT SUISSE AG | NYSC – investors are only now becoming aware that, while they thought they were purchasing “mortgaged-backed” securities, in fact they were purchasing non-mortgaged backed securities”

    This is the big one. If this works, other investors will be going in for the kill. And they will win.

    Yves, do you think you could dig into why it took so long for this to happen?

    Does it have to do with the trust organizing documents, which require a large percentage of investors to sign on simultaneously before a suit can be filed in the name of the trust?

    If so, who overcame that hurdle, and how? Can this be replicated?

    I’ve long been of the opinion that investor suits are what is needed to destroy the banksters.

  12. LucyLulu

    UN has released report of chemical weapons use in Syria. They confirm that sarin was used in three areas of Ghouta, including against civilians and children. It describes symptoms seen, and says first responders also suffered symptoms. It describes the surface to surface missiles used to deliver the chemicals. It does not make any conclusions about responsibility however HRW is claiming the UN report has verified all their findings. HRW says that the Syrian Army is the only entity in possession of these amounts of chemicals and type of missiles necessary to carry out an attack on this scale.

    IMO, while I think the weight of the evidence falls on Assad being responsible for this attack, the rebels may well have used chemical weapons, too. Both sides have elements capable of committing atrocities. But it doesn’t matter, US interference never ends well, we should stay out of it. And threats to our security, gimme a break! Certainly not if we keep troops out of the region. Nor do we have the resources to alleviate all the world’s humanitarian problems. Let’s first alleviate our own at home, and keep our promises to care of our troops that have already fought and come home disabled.

    Full text of UN report:

  13. Francois T

    Re: What’s wrong witht he modern world?

    The perspective of letting mass extinctions happen does not frazzle “modern” leaders. As a matter of fact, they don’t give a shit, a.k.a. they don’t fund research at all, even when warned of the consequences.

    But this is nothing new: the same happened with climate change and we are nowhere near a comprehensive solution. Meanwhile, marvel at what is befalling Colorado

  14. Hugh

    Stiglitz gives a good speech in its descriptions but misses the point in his prescriptions. He says to combat inequality we need growth and better markets. Really? What we need is an end to kleptocracy, an end to the rule, not just of the wealthy (Stiglitz’s 1%) but their elites (the class to which Stiglitz belongs).

    1. Montanamaven

      “Growth” is unsustainable. Population growth should be addressed. Carbon emissions should be lowered by making less stuff. And we don’t need “better markets”. Why do we need to import Danish cookies and they import Keebler? There is too much shipping and not enough home manufacturing of basic human needs. Enough with “the markets”.
      And yes, Hugh, your kleptocrats are taking aka looting the profits and hoarding them rather than putting them into wages and research and development.

    2. MikeNY

      Hear, hear.

      The appeal to growth is a red herring, a smokescreen thrown up so people won’t focus on our immoral, indefensible concentration of wealth. It’s sad that Stiglitz won’t see or say this.

      Just like QE, as a form of “Trickle-Down” economic policy, functions to keep Congress from enacting any substantive jobs program or wealth redistribution policy. It’s sad that Krugman can’t see this.

  15. rich

    Watch David Gregory Scramble to Avoid Answering Hard Questions on Banker Bailouts and Bonuses

    Well Mr. Gregory was at it again this past weekend when he hosted CNBC’s professional Wall Street ass kisser Maria Bartiromo, Hank “Too Big To Fail” Paulson and Massachusetts Rep. Barney Frank. While I am no fan of Barney Frank, being the politician that he is, he took the opportunity to bash Wall Street and made a very accurate point. He asked:

    I do want to add one thing to your point about those poor, beleaguered bankers, who have been forced to do so much that they can’t lend money. If they really are running businesses that are so stressed that they can’t do their basic work, why are they paying themselves so much money?

  16. skippy

    Great News!

    The 400 richest Americans are now worth a combined $2 trillion, according to Forbes.

    That sets a record, Forbes said, and marks a jump from last year’s total of $1.7 trillion.

    The average net worth of a Forbes 400 member is now $5 billion—also the highest ever. And the costs of being part of the 400 Club rose to $1.3 billion.

    (Read more: Gates tops Forbes list again)

    But it’s the $2 trillion number that remains the most interesting. The 400 richest are now worth more than the GDPs of many nations—and they are worth more than most governments spend or tax.

    Here is some perspective on what the 400 richest Americans are really worth.

    $2 trillion is more than the combined net worth of half of all Americans. The bottom half, of course.

    $2 trillion is more than the annual GDP of Italy, Mexico or Canada.

    $2 trillion is equal to the Federal Reserve’s holdings of publicly traded U.S. Treasurys.

    $2 trillion is the estimated size of the underground economy, mostly unreported income.

    $2 trillion would fund all government spending through July of this year.

    $2 trillion is equal to about two-thirds of all taxes to be collected in the U.S. for 2013.

    $2 trillion would pay for all of the existing home sales in the U.S. in 2012 AND 2013 year-to-date.

    Skip here… it gets even better!!!

    Natural gas leaks from production wells are lower than previous estimates and below the level that would erase the fuel’s climate benefit over coal, according to a University of Texas study backed by both industry and environmentalists.

    The study being released today, the first to use actual measurements of emissions, found that 0.42 percent of natural gas produced in the U.S. is released into the atmosphere. A 2010 Cornell University study using data provided by drillers estimated leakage at 0.6 to 3.2 percent.

    “The question was, as we bring more natural gas on board, what are the methane emissions, and are they so high that we’re creating a problem for the climate,” Steven Hamburg, chief scientist at the Environmental Defense Fund, said in an interview. “No process is going to be 100 percent tight, and so the question is how low can we get it.”

    skip here… Bawhahahahaha… Ok I’m good now.

    Anywho… Its a study with data provided by drillers and painstakingly examined by the University of Texas – Environmental Defense Fund. Which lowers the leakage reported by another report from Cornell that used data provided by drillers too.

    If we dependence with the educational profit mills and look at the EDF:

    Environmental Defense Fund or EDF (formerly known as Environmental Defense) is a United States–based nonprofit environmental advocacy group. The group is known for its work on issues including global warming, ecosystem restoration, oceans, and human health, and advocates using sound science, economics and law to find environmental solutions that work. It is nonpartisan, and its work often advocates market-based solutions to environmental problems.

    The group’s headquarters are in New York City, with offices nationwide, and scientists and policy specialists working worldwide. Regional offices more focused on local issues and policies include: Austin, TX; Boulder, CO; San Francisco, CA; Los Angeles, CA; Sacramento, CA; Washington, D.C.; Raleigh, North Carolina; Boston, MA.

    Fred Krupp has served as its president since 1984.[4] In 2011, Krupp was named by U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu to a group of experts who will make recommendations to improve the safety and environmental performance of natural gas hydraulic fracturing from shale formations.[5]

    In 1991, The Economist called EDF “America’s most economically literate green campaigners.”[6] The organization was ranked first among environmental groups in a 2007 Financial Times global study of 850 business-nonprofit partnerships,[7] and received a four star-rating from Charity Navigator, the independent charity evaluator.[8] – snip

    2007 – Co-founded United States Climate Action Partnership (US-CAP), a coalition of major corporations and environmental groups supporting action on global warming, including a market-based carbon emissions cap. Corporate participants include GE, DuPont and Duke Energy; non-profit groups involved are Pew Center on Global Climate Change, Natural Resources Defense Council and the World Resources Institute, a co-founder.[85][86]

    2007 – Helped negotiate an environmental codicil as part of Texas Pacific’s buyout of TXU.[87][88][89][90][91][92][93][94][95][96][97][98][99][100][101][102][103][104][105]

    2008-2011 – Founded and developed the Climate Corps program, which matches organizations with MBA and MPA students to uncover energy savings.[106][107] – snip

    skippy… the folks at the top fund (allow) everything – else… its trickle down reality… not wealth.

      1. skippy

        Did ya see the bit where they added the word ***FUND*** to the org name, formerly known as thingy… cough… under new management.

        skippy… its worse than point man on the DMZ at 2:30AM with a parade of boots behind you, the massive PA systems blasting Neil Diamond “Cracklin’ Rosie” followed by Devo “Whip It” across vast grid squares. Who can work under those conditions… seriously… eh… reality just keeps bending~

          1. skippy

            Anonymous shill – wouldn’t it be hilarious – we are every where – expect us = NSA PsyOp.

            skippy… why fish when they jump in the boat – the gestapo – lool

      2. skippy


        I’m calling it… MBA-MPA’s are the equivalent to the Red Gawdless Commie Political Officer in the Free Market Ideological Truth Matrix.

        skippy… watch your step mate…

  17. Dante

    The Untold Story of Citibank’s Student Loan Deals at NYU

    An institutionalized wealth transfer system is playing out at New York University, a nonprofit organization subsidized by the U.S. taxpayer. Forgivable mortgage loans for multi-million dollar luxury homes have been doled out by NYU to an inner circle of administrators and elite faculty. The University’s President, John Sexton, has received an interest rate of less than one-quarter of one percent from NYU to finance a multi-million dollar beach residence on Fire Island. All this while NYU students carry the greatest burden of debt of any nonprofit university in the country – a figure placed at $659 million in 2010 by the Department of Education and now estimated to be well over $1 billion due to a poorly understood debt compounding trick called “capitalized interest.”

    While the unconscionable mortgage loans at NYU have received significant press attention and a Congressional probe by Senator Chuck Grassley, the unseemly details of just how NYU students amassed all this debt and the conflicts of interest between the university’s preferred lender, Citibank, and the Chairman of NYU’s Board, Martin Lipton (who has inexplicably held that post for the past 15 years), have failed to make it to the front pages of mainstream media.

    1. JTFaraday

      No, we already know that story.

      We also know that NYU is BOTH the largest and one of the most expensive private schools in the entire country.

      The untold story is the pressure upper admin placed on people making admissions decisions during those years to admit and enroll more and more tuition paying/ loan taking students– without reference to admissions standards.

      That’s where we enter the ninth circle of hell in this story, (Dante).

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