Links 4/12/14

The superhero tendency: Researchers find people with a ‘supersense’ for justice are swayed by reason rather than emotion Daily Mail

Idea of New Attention Disorder Spurs Research, and Debate New York Times. So any type of mental wiring that does not suit most employers is now deemed a disorder in order to medicate kids. Charming.

Babies cry out of spite Daily Mash. I trust this research more than the attention disorder studies.

Big pharma: Storehouse of trouble Financial Times

Dropbox faces online protests after appointing Condoleezza Rice to board Guardian

Amazon Set to Release Smartphone This Year Wall Street Journal

Greece’s economy is still a huge mess Fortune. Duh!

Iran anger over US visa refusal BBC

President Carter: “The Rest of the World, Almost Unanimously, Looks At America As The No. 1 Warmonger. That We Revert To Armed Conflict Almost At The Drop Of A Hat — And Quite Often It’s Not Only Desired By The Leaders Of Our Country, But It’s Also Supported By The People Of America” George Washington


Ukraine: Lies and Realities CounterPunch

US imposes sanctions on Crimea gas group Financial Times

Here’s Why Putin Won’t Stop Selling Gas to Ukraine Business Week. Seems to miss that withholding it for short periods would be pretty damaging at not high cost to Russia.

Europe After Ukraine Project Syndicate

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

NSA … *ucked Up …TCP/IP Patrick Durusau

Shocker: NSA exploited #heartbleed bug for at least two years Lambert

W.H. denies NSA-‘Heartbleed’ link Politico. Telling that the White House felt compelled to try to run interference.

Journalists Who Broke News on N.S.A. Surveillance Return to the U.S. New York Times

Obamacare Launch

Fully Raw Cannibals and My Obamacare Nightmare riverdaughter. You need to read this.

‘Stepping on their own tail’: Rachel Maddow questions the timing of Kathleen Sebelius’ exit Raw Story. You gotta love the logic: forcing her out put a focus on the fact that Obamacare had problems! As if people didn’t know that already.

The Sebelius sendoff: Everybody wins Politico

Social Security, Treasury target taxpayers for their parents’ decades-old debts Washington Post (Scott A)

Allentown Promotes Safe Trade Zones for Online Deals CSNPhilly (Carol B). Holey moley, this never occurred to me as a risk.

Crude by rail accidents in and around the city of Philadelphia protested Philly (Paul Tioxon)

Crude oil is displacing other commodities on trains, critics charge McClatchy (Chuck L)

Homeless former pro-boxer builds home from scrap wood and trash as he tried to rebuild his life in San Francisco Daily Mail. Lambert: “Of course the city zoned his area and tore it down.”

Can You Buy A License to Speed? PriceOnomics

MAP: In 31 States, Daycare Is More Expensive Than College Mother Jones (Carol B)

Why Does UCLA Now Have Two Institutes of the Environment? GreenEconomics (lysa)

Mr. Market Has a Sad

Nasdaq Closes Below 4000 as Stocks Extend Slide Wall Street Journal

Manipulated Markets And The Empty Bag Ilargi

Criminal probe launched into Herbalife Financial Times

Newly started foreclosures head higher in 19 states MarketWatch (Lisa E)

ATTORNEY ALBERT DEMANDS RETRACTION FROM LEXIS NEXIS ABOUT THE HELEN GALOPE DEICISON WHICH WAS FAVORABLE FOR THE HOMEOWNER!!! ScribD (Deontos). A bit unhinged, but her charge that LexisNexis has systematic bias in how it presents pro-borrower cases rings true.

Economic Stagnation and the Stagnation of Economics CounterPunch

Antidote du jour (furzy mouse)


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And a bonus (Lance N). Please note that I am departing just this once from my practice of not posting ICanHasCheezburger type photos. Please don’t become emboldened and send me ones with words. But if you see an image on ICanHasCheezburger that you think would work on NC, use their LolBuilder to capture the image without the text.


See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here

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  1. diptherio

    Re: Fully Raw Cannibals and My Obamacare Nightmare

    If you really want to understand a piece of legislation, especially federal legislation, all you really need to do is read the title of the bill. Specifically, the last word in the title of the bill. It’s always the same word–“Act”–and that’s exactly what nearly all legislation is these days: an act.

    The JOBS ACT is where they (DC politicians) act like they give a rip about jobs…the Affordable Care Act is where they act like they care whether or not your care is affordable. But guess what? They don’t! It’s just an act, hahahaha! They admit it in every bill title, but many people have yet to catch on.

    Your tax dollars at work, people. Remember that when you’re filing for medical bankruptcy because the ambulance took you to an out-of-network hospital.

    1. Whine Country

      The term “act” seems wholly appropriate to me when you consider that, whereas all of the rest of us folks work for a living, doctors and lawyers “practice”. While they “practice”, and politicians “act” and the results are…well, as you observe.

    2. tyaresun

      Absolutely true. I am paying $750 per month for a “silver” plan. The “bronze” plan was for $550 per month and had a 40% deductible. I have been to the doctor before and they give you 50% off if you pay immediately upon receiving service. I took the silver plan assuming that I will not get that 50% off if I have a major medical issue.

      The prices that the doctors charge are amazing too, I paid $900 for an x-ray, well $450 with the 50% off. The government and the people will be bankrupt if we do not control healthcare prices.

  2. YankeeFrank

    I’m a dog lover, but that photo of the pit bull and baby scares me. As I understand it, some breeds are “dominant” breeds. Pit bulls, German Shepherds, Rottweillers, and some other breeds maintain a strict(er) pack hierarchy. That Pit resting its head on the baby is saying “this baby is mine” or “this baby is beneath me”. If the baby does something the pit bull interprets as jockeying for a higher position in the pack it may correct the baby by biting it or worse. The baby has no idea about any of this, unlike a puppy, which understands dog body language and pack dynamics instinctively, and knows how to send submission signals that will help it avoid being hurt.

    I might be wrong, and might be reacting to the fact that my eldest beagle mix has been bitten twice by Pit Bulls (one was only 6 months old, attacking him on the sidewalk while we were saying “hi” — I had to grab the little beast and pry his teeth off my dog’s face with my hands. Luckily it was small and I could do this). The other bite was through a fence or it would likely have been much worse. I do know that Pits were initially bred for pit fighting and that they know how to use feints and false injury/false submission to surprise an opponent and catch them off guard (no other breed does this). And breeding in the US over the past 50 years has done nothing to dissuade their aggressive natures. I know Pit Bull people LOVE their dogs and deny they are capable of hurting their children, and that’s true until its not. The problem as I see it, regardless of whether the dominant breed theory is correct or not, is that a bite from a poodle or beagle will not kill or seriously injure while a bite from a Pit or a Rottie can cause irreparable harm or even death, especially to a small child or infant.

    The story I was told at the ASPCA by the trainer in Manhattan when I brought our stray Rottie in for training was that a family had left a small child in the house with two family Rotties and they tore it apart. Our Rottie, which a friend found roaming the streets of the Bronx near where I grew up, was the nicest, gentlest dog. To me. He didn’t seem to have a killer instinct at all. When he caught a bird on a forest trail I ran up and he was smelling it. I picked it up and placed it on a branch. After a few minutes gathering its wits after that terrifying incident the bird flew off. So I seriously consider that Rottie to be a very gentle dog. I mention this because I don’t want anyone to think I have some phobia or irrational fear of dominant-breed dogs — and I wouldn’t have let him alone with a small child. A little dog is, perhaps, just as likely to bite a child. But I’d rather see a small dog bite a child than a big dog. If you have a family with small children, get a family dog. One that a small child can be rough with, pull its ears, sit on, without there being any question about how it will respond. A Beagle, or a retriever of some kind. Mutts are best of course. But even “gentle” breeds must be judged for their individual personality as well. I just think its impossible to judge the personality of some breeds to the extent they can be trusted around small children.

    With my beagle mixes, I see how they are different to me than the dogs we had when I was a child. They listen much better for one. They see me as their master, whereas when I was a child my dogs didn’t see me that way. I am incredibly over-solicitous and generous with my dogs now. Much more than I ever was as a child under my parents’ roof. Perhaps its because I am constantly with them, making sure they are okay, feeding them, nurturing them and walking them. And perhaps this is why they listen so well — they respect my judgment because they know I don’t give many orders unless its important. I don’t know honestly. I do know they are loving creatures and I could trust them around any child. They are small, thoroughly un-aggressive dogs. They don’t even have a strict hierarchy between them. They occasionally scrap with each other over a bone or something, and just as often the littlest wins. It really depends on who wants it more at the moment. There is no dominance order that I can discern. I don’t think the same can be said for the more dominant breed dogs. And when you mix that order with little children it can produce unpredictable results.

    That’s my 17 cents.

    1. Brindle

      How dangerous are Pit Bulls? It is a complicated subject. I found this section at the ASPCA site:

      —Pit bulls have been bred to behave differently during a fight. They may not give warning before becoming aggressive, and they’re less likely to back down when clashing with an opponent. When provoked, they may become aggressive more readily than another breed might. Sometimes they don’t inhibit their bites, so they may cause injury more often than other dogs.—

    2. Paul Tioxon

      Pit Bull apologist are all assholes. The animal is one breed among how many? Hundreds? It was bred into existence by people and now needs to be bred out of existence. The sense of entitlement, to have any and every experience, to be denied nothing, to emotionally bond to one breed of an animal with so many choices that if you cared about your own obligation to people and children around you, especially in the face of the almost daily news reports of this breed causing one tragedy after another, to me is beyond belief or my capacity to extend any courtesy to these morons other than contempt. If Obama pink misted as wedding parties as pit bulls killed and maimed people in this country this site would set up the NC Liberation Army Front. The tiny sacrifice to make sure that tragedy does not happen by just not owning a pit bull, not breeding them and legislating them out existence is a small gesture of humanity towards the victims of this breed. Pit Bull lovers, and their defenders who hide behind freedom and personal rights are one example of the irrationality of people and why we can’t accomplish larger political goals when out of nowhere, crazed defenders of pit bull jump out of normally considerate citizens. If you can’t give up pit bulls to protect people how you give up anything else in your material iifestyle of affluence for a more egalitarian society? Just get a poodle. Or a labradoodle, or anything else that does not kill or maim out of the clear blue sky. All of the good pit bulls are free to live out their days in peace while their population dwindles to nothing. Is that too much to ask?

      1. abynormal

        ive brushed up next to too many pit bull lovers…they all seem to have the same makeup: Defeat & Fear (…creating raging narcissist)

        photos of their ‘best friends’ true nature…0…1.1.40.img..9.19.4875.wgX2_zXxzDc

        “The most altruistic and sustainable philosophies fail before the brute brain stem imperative of self-interest.”
        Peter Watts

    3. Furzy Mouse

      I totally agree that the pit bulls are dangerous, and should probably not be allowed to be pets….(I did not take that pic!)…I have had to break up fights between pit bulls and other dogs….thank goodness I know how to do this…that said, I do know families with pit bulls as pets who have had no problem with them…but I advise against this, as well as Dobermans, who have been noted to become vicious in their advanced years…

      1. abynormal

        i Love your contributions Fuzzy!
        the baby is Adorable of course…the canine a bit of a sore spot.

        yourFriend, Aby

    4. PQS

      Never forget that the pit bull is a Pit Bull Terrier. The terrier group is bred for extreme tenacity – I know, I have a small terrier who has always been gentle with our daughter, but who is probably the most “predatory” dog I’ve even been around. His prey and hunting instincts are on a hair trigger and are very, very difficult to redirct into positive activities. However, he isn’t big enough to do any real damage, except to small creatures (which is why I told my daughter having little furry pets like mice and rabbits are pretty much out of the question with a terrier in the house….) And his terrier nature has been very hard to get used to as a dog owner….I won’t get another terrier, I don’t think, as they are just very intense dogs. Very intelligent, however. Way more than other dogs I’ve ever had or been around.
      I think it is prudent in all cases to keep very small children away from being alone with dogs of pretty much any size. Dogs are unpredictable and can snap at a moment’s notice – even, and perhaps especially, the ones who “would never”.

      And why would you want a pet that can really hurt you? To take a chance it might?

      1. cwaltz

        Any animal has the potential to harm a child. It certainly isn’t limited to the canine species. Personally children are meant to be supervised around anything dangerous. From my viewpoint that means that a pet and a child should be supervised whether that pet be a cat, dog or any other animal(and let’s face it the reptile species carries some nasty germies.)

    5. Doug Terpstra

      I’ll gladly pay more for your good cents. That PB is saying “get your own damn bone! This one’s mine!”

      Pit bulls and wolves are neoliberals disguised as canines, just as others are disguised as humans. Two pit bulls attacked my two dogs, a Lhasa Apso and Yorkie, one day without the slightest warning from behind. Because I wasn’t able to pick up both my kids in time and fight off two determined predators, I had to drop over mine, try to fend off the jaws and hope they didn’t relish human blood. I was lucky another neighbor nearby had a stout walking stick and used it. I got off easy with just a few bites — torn ear, punctured wrist and torso. More importantly, my dogs were fine, just scared shitless (now I understand the literal meaning).

      Apparently evil is not confined to humans, and I now have the same affection for pit bulls as I have for banksters. and politicians. They should all be banished from civil society

      1. YankeeFrank

        Wow, I thought I was going to get the pit bull PC police up my ass with my comment. That’s the reason I wrote my post in such a circumspect manner. I checked out those google images not realizing how horrifying they would be. Me and my dogs got off extremely lucky. For a while I carried around a telescoping baton when I walked my dogs because of the two pit bull attacks, but the damned police took it away from me. Apparently they’re the only ones allowed to defend themselves.

        If there is one thing I can’t stand more than pit bulls themselves its their owners. The ones I’ve met are generally stupid, ignorant types with way too much to prove. My wife says they have “beastmaster syndrome”. Pathetic.

        1. kareninca

          I am not just a dog lover, but a dog obsessive. And I think pit bulls should be bred out of existence, and those presently in existence should have their teeth capped in some way or removed. They are dangerous in ways that other dogs are not: I have known ones who have been “wonderful family dogs” for years, and then suddenly attacked either humans or other dogs. The people who keep them are dangerous, self-deluded fools.

          That photo is an indirect Darwin Award work in progress. Bummer for the poor infant.

    6. cwaltz

      Small dogs bite just as often as the larger ones. They just don’t cause the same damage. A Rotties jaw is incredibly powerful when they clamp down on something they are going to cause damage. The littler dogs have sharp little teeth but they don’t have the same mandible action going on.

  3. trish

    from Fully Raw Cannibals and My Obamacare Nightmare:

    “seems like each premium is calculated to optimize profits…”

    exactly. what’s to be expected when the insurance industry runs the show. profit from everyone able to cough up something and screw those who can’t.

    1. Doug Terpstra

      Spot on. The cure is far worse than the disease now that the walking dead rule the world under free market cannibalism. Get your own damn bone if you can.

  4. Katniss Everdeen

    RE: Idea of New Attention Disorder Spurs Research, and Debate

    Sluggish. Cognitive. Tempo. You have got to be kidding me.

    “‘These children are not the ones giving adults much trouble, so they’re easy to miss,’ Dr. McBurnett said. “They’re the daydreamy ones, the ones with work that’s not turned in, leaving names off of papers or skipping questions, things like that, that impinge on grades or performance.”

    I sure wouldn’t want to have “sluggish cognitive tempo” in Albuquerque (yesterday’s link) where you’d be liable to get tased or shot dead for daydreaming or LEAVING YOUR NAME OFF YOUR PAPER.

    Good thing we’ve already got the drugs to “cure” those sicko kids who LEAVE THEIR NAMES OFF THEIR PAPERS. I’m sure BILLIONS of education dollars are wasted annually when members of the teacher’s union have to match those papers with no names to the mentally ill students to whom they belong. Maybe Bill and Melinda could take this critical issue up.

    I guess when the goal is to drug EVERYBODY for life, leaving your name off your paper is as good a reason as any. As good as not “giving adults much trouble,” that is.

    1. Furzy Mouse

      In grade school, I was an incessant daydreamer, because I was bored to tears, and usually snuck a book onto my lap to read…the nuns thought there might be a problem with me, but after they tested my IQ, which came in rather high, they left me alone…

      1. sd

        Same here. Bored to tears. Read ahead in text books and solved math problems only to wait for the class to catch up. Spent hours inside my head while the teacher said, “blah blah blah…”

        1. Skeptic

          Same here. Modern education is cruel and unusual punishment. Programming of drones to fit the System. Best thing was a window to look out at Freedom. College mostly the same thing. Read John Gatto, Maria Montessori (pre Yuppies).

      2. lupemax

        My favorite teacher was in sixth grade. When you finished your work you could read any of the wonderful books that surrounded the room while everyone else caught up. It was the first year when I really learned to read and haven’t stopped since. Before that I remember being very, very bored most of the time…

    2. trish

      Daydreaming, mind-wandering (isn’t that what kids are supposed to do?) defined as a disorder…what a scam.
      And you only have to go down a few paragraphs in the article to see what this is about: “researchers have helped Eli Lilly investigate how its flagship A.D.H.D. drug might treat it.” More money for big pharma!!! More corporate money for the researchers/”consultants” (Barkley has cashed in) & research institutions who benefit from pathologizing normal kid behavior. Another fad for pharma!
      Parasites on kids.
      and yes, more ways to keep the public docile…starting early.

  5. Jim Haygood

    From the WaPo article ‘Soc Sec, Treasury Target Taxpayers …’

    ‘The Federal Trade Commission advises Americans that “family members typically are not obligated to pay the debts of a deceased relative from their own assets.” But Social Security officials say that if children indirectly received assistance from public dollars paid to a parent, the children’s money can be taken, no matter how long ago any overpayment occurred.’

    Yet another example of government exempting itself from its own rules of good practice, in this case by ending a former 10-year statute of limitations. Kinda rhymes with gov-guaranteed student loans that usually can’t be discharged in bankruptcy.

    Big Gov is the most merciless usurer of all, hounding its victims to the grave … AND BEYOND!

    1. skippy

      What you don’t like the way neoliberalism is going?

      skippy… I guess the ruby members never got the revisions.

    2. Katniss Everdeen

      This is as outrageous as it is disturbingly desperate. The government is so broke that it needs to get money like THIS????

      No addresses or records just outright CONFISCATION without documentation?

      Time to start worrying about those IRAs and 401-Ks, I think. Word has it that the feds have their eye on them.

      1. abynormal

        couldn’t agree more Kat

        “It would be an instructive exercise for the skeptical reader to try to frame a definition of taxation which does not also include theft. Like the robber, the State demands money at the equivalent of gunpoint; if the taxpayer refuses to pay, his assets are seized by force, and if he should resist such depredation, he will be arrested or shot if he should continue to resist.”
        murray rothbard

        i don’t trust the gov to shoot strait…show me to the pole

        1. hunkerdown

          I don’t trust anyone in a society that tacitly endorses double-crossing. Neither government nor anarchism will do any good in such an environment.

      2. Nobody (the outcast)

        They don’t need the money. This is simply petty, bullying and childish behavior by our government. Speaking of which…

        A sidebar on the BBC Aboutalebi visa article via Washington Times: “Americans of a certain age will not forget their bitter anger at watching 52 countrymen paraded, bound and blindfolded, through the streets of Tehran, nor the endless anxiety felt while the American diplomats were held prisoner for 444 days”

        This American of a certain age remembers the revelations of Iran/Contra and has a much more nuanced view. (My anger became directed at Reagan and his cronies). I see the visa denial as petty, hypocritical, bullying and childish. Quintessential U.S foreign policy.

        This behavior permeates the U.S. Government. Is it a reflection of the electorate (those that vote)? Some days I think it is, some days I think it isn’t. See: Carter quote in the links above.

      3. Wayne Reynolds

        The banks have already done a bail-in during the financial crisis in Cypress. How long before it is done here? In the next financial crash everything will be on the table to bail out the banks. This behavior by the Social Security Administration seems to me to be a psyops maneuver to stir up negative attitudes towards Social Security by TPTB to forward their plans to eliminate it.

    3. sd

      What about the reverse? My biological father refused to pay court ordered child support for years. Where’s my refund?

  6. Ned Ludd

    Heartbleed leaks private keys. Heartbleed, by the way, occurred in a suspiciously designed “feature” that, for the web, is redundant; keeping a connection alive is already part of the underlying infrastructure of the web. There is no reason to add this feature again, and it was (intentionally?) reckless to add this complexity to the code for web encryption.

    Andrea Shepard, one of the developers of Tor, adds that Heartbleed sprays more output than necessary from your machine’s pseudorandom number generator (PRNG). This makes its easier for the NSA to decrypt communications if the PRNG is weak or compromised.

    • Speaking of #Heartbleed, is there any non-NSA reason for TLS heartbeats to contain PRNG output, or is that just more grounds for paranoia? – 6:54 PM – 9 Apr 2014

    • There seem to be some indications the NSA likes to encourage protocols to spray more PRNG output than necessary… – 7:34 PM – 9 Apr 2014

    • They want to see more consecutive bits of output to decrease the amount of time to solve for the state of a weak generator. – 8:15 PM – 9 Apr 2014

    • A bit ago @matthew_d_green had a paper to the effect that the 4 bytes of timestamp in a ClientHello and only 28 bytes of entropy – 8:16 PM – 9 Apr 2014

    • …make it markedly more difficult vs. seeing 32 bytes of entropy if the client is using the backdoored Dual EC DRBG. – 8:16 PM – 9 Apr 2014

    Dr. Robin Seggelmann, a working group member at IETF, seems to have both designed this oddball feature and wrote the exploitable code, which he submitted to OpenSSL. He denies that he inserted the bugdoor deliberately.

    1. Ned Ludd

      CloudFlare revoked the certificate for their challenge page. “If you are still able to visit the challenge site, you might have to change your browser settings.” The results of their challenge are now available on their blog:

      Two more confirmed winners: Rubin Xu, PhD student in the Security group of Cambridge University submitted at 04:11:09PST on 04/12; and Ben Murphy, Security Researcher submitted at 7:28:50PST on 04/12.

      “Based on the findings, we recommend everyone reissue + revoke their private keys.” Yan Zhu, a software developer for EFF, noted that, even after certificates are revoked, “site visitors might still be MITMed for another 6 months.” She linked to the following news article at Netcraft:

      How certificate revocation (doesn’t) work in practice

    2. hunkerdown

      “If anything had been demonstrated by the discovery of the bug, Dr Seggelmann said it was awareness that more contributors were needed to keep an eye over code in open source software.”

      The tell. Eyes are easily fooled. Static analysis tools are not. Drawing hostile labor into futile endeavors is a pacification technique every parent knows but somehow never sees being used against themselves.

  7. Dark of the Stars

    I’m no fan of Obamacare, but I can’t let Riverdaughter’s assertion go by: as far as I know, as an occasional Pittsburgh activist for single payer and someone who pays attention to these things, the ACA has nothing to do with the disgraceful spectacle of UPMC and Highmark throwing the public to the dogs while they fight over who gets to profit from our ill health.

    If anyone wants to school me on this, I’d be curious to know some facts that support her implication (“They played nicely before Obamacare but no more.”). Post hoc ergo propter hoc?

  8. Andrea

    A new cognitive deficit attention type disorder?

    (2nd article in links.) Yikes!

    The first – ADHD – covered some of the children that used to be 1940 > *minimally brain damaged* – the US has always favored individual and endogenous diagnoses, on the medical model.

    These kids were ‘backward’ in school thru social deprivation and slipping thru the cracks, and/or uninterested, bored with school, or somehow, yes, ‘slow’, etc. – some of them were dyslexics, some had simple deficits, hearing, for ex.

    Then around 1970 things changed and it was considered unkind to infer brain damage, and the diagnosis turned to *learning disabled.* These kids were ‘normal’ but ‘just couldn’t learn so well’, etc., but had the right to go to Harvard, too, yeah! Note, until ADHD the only therapy was help with schooling, special ed, dispensations, orientation, with a little parenting skills type stuff.

    Recently, with ADHD, we have a mixture of supposedly brain driven activity which leaves out the environment (attention), and behavioral criteria – hyper-activity. The H – A part comes from very old diagnoses in symptom lists originally from France (as pioneers in psychiatry): indeed some brain-damaged patients have involuntary leg and other movements, or cannot stop walking, circling, twitching, expostulating, waving arms, nodding, etc. (These were and are very serious cases, such as war-damaged and many other, mostly frontal damage.)

    The ADHD diagnosis makes no sense whatsoever, and covers, as I said, in part the ‘low performing at school’ children. However, the hyper activity aspect, and the ‘brain’ activity picked out for focus – attention -, clearly situate the ‘pathology’ in behavior, in how children act (or are perceived to act), how well they comply, how much attention they pay to superiors, adults, how smartly they follow orders, do their homework, etc. We are talking social compliance here, nothing to do with brains. (The treatment we all know about.)

    So now one other end of the scale – those who check out by day-dreaming, being quiet, taking endless time over boring additions (but get them done) are to be targeted? Their coping strategies be scotched? This goes a step further…you can be ‘too active’ or ‘too sluggish’.. what is left?

    Medication for ADHD (legal speed) is going to create a new generation of disturbed, and for some %, criminal young adults, I guess that is just fodder for the prison industry, the army, and Cos looking for hyped up crazed CEOs?

    1. trish

      re the ADHD diagnosis, ‘low performing kids so we don’t have to address (and fund solutions for) the real issues AND the diagnosis allows the stimulants (legal speed) to be used by the well-off to give their kids competive advantage in many of the prestigious high schools.

    2. ADHD4YouAndMe

      You would do well to go to You Tube, and watch all of Dr. Russell A. Barkley’s videos regarding ADHD. “Legalized speed” by the way, reacts differently in ADHD people than it does in a normal person. The dosages are also strictly controlled, and there are different types of medications. Adderall is different than Strattera, for example.

      You know nothing about ADHD, and you don’t know how devastating this disorder is. There are massive social and employment implications when you have, along with higher rates of other things like depression and anxiety.

      1. cwaltz

        I realize this is just anecdotal but I worked in a military pharmacy and I used to wonder at how they came up with a diagnosis because I saw Ritalin as very overprescribed. It was hard to imagine that a 2 to 4 year old by its very nature would have ADHD when attention spans need time to develop. Yet I saw prescriptions for children this young. It seemed more likely that the child was expressing behavioral issues and instead of addressing it the medical community wanted to medicate it out of existence.

    1. CB

      I don’t know that I’d describe it as spite, but regards their attitudes and the politicians and policies the majority of the middle class have steadily supported, they have a lot to answer for.

  9. voltaic

    It is quite disturbing to learn that those FORCED into Medicaid are subject to having ALL of their assets seized by government thugs. After reading this I decided not to vote for Democrats. I refuse to vote for soulless GOP, but I won’t vote for thieving Democrats. I guess I do agree with one GOP idea (never thought I would sat that) and that’s to scrap this ACA garbage and start anew. :
    Medicaid Estate Recovery + ACA: Unintended Consequences?

    I find it interesting that those with corporate sponsored plans don’t have to pay taxes on those benefits. The self-employed can deduct the cost of healthcare insurance. Yet those FORCED into Medicare, even temporarily, can lose everything to the government and the government doesn’t even tell you how much you will owe until you die. You can tell that ACA was a GOP idea, since it rewards the well-to-do and punishes the poor and middle class. That the Democrats adopted this strategy is disturbing.

  10. Eureka Springs

    “Fully Raw Cannibals and My Obamacare Nightmare”

    Upon reading the headline I suddenly realized I misread the word “cannibal” and this year I’ve heard far far more conversations about “raw cannabis” aka wax or cannabinoids than Obamney not care. People of all stripes (even doctors and other health care professionals are seeking it) who are suffering various serious illness, they are all atwitter about cannabinoids… paying no attention to the impossible Obamney care. Hopefully they are paying no attention to democrats either… if the silence is any indication they don’t even bother with ridicule and scorn anymore.

    Perhaps insurance companies should throw in some cannabinoids. /s

  11. susan the other

    Jimmy Carter. Yes we have no democracy. We are brutal warmongers. In fact we have no laws to govern a civil government – only unilateral contracts of oppression. We have no representation. We have no ability to force meaningful referenda (sp?) We pay taxes so the rich can enjoy socialism. And capitalism is eating the world alive.

      1. scraping_by

        Or. you could think of him as thirty years older and, one hopes for all of us, wiser.

        Most of the rest of the US presidents spent their post-office years more or less cashing in. His immediate predecessor charged 10 grand for a handshake, while his immediate successor did a $5 million lecture tour of Japan after opening the US market to their cars. You go to Atlanta and the Carter Library’s not much bigger than an Interstate convenience store.

        I think Brother Jimmy’s felt the cold hand of death on his shoulder. I can attest it tends to change your viewpoint. Perhaps he’s acting from the regret highlighted by the certain knowledge of the end.

      2. Benedict@Large

        A very important article. Though a confirmed leftist, I’d never been satisfied with the “blame it all on Reagan” excuse that the left always pulls out. Reagan simply was not a smart enough man, and the GOP is too inept at governing to have orchestrated the right shift of the 70s-80s. There had to be something more significant going on (but generally unrecognized even today). As this article points out well, the shift started earlier than Reagan, and was only possible because Democratic Party leadership was fully on board with it.

        The Democratic Party abandoned the working class before Reagan ever took office, and has been delivering lip service only ever since.

      3. Jackrabbit

        The end of the article adds a prescription/warning to progressives:

        “As the debate over the future of progressive politics continues, stemmed by Reed’s recent analysis, progressives will do well to remember the lesson of the catastrophic Jimmy Carter presidency: a Democratic Party that is serious about progressive politics is not viable without . . . “

        What’s important here is not the but the desire to re-take the Democratic Party. As I see it, this is a fool’s errand. Some ‘realists’ among the progressives are pushing this ‘take back’ tack. They argue that only the Democratic Party is a viable and safe vehicle for those who are serious about politics.

        I’d guess that these ‘realists’ are probably just establishment progressives that are co-opting the discontent. They cling to DP like parasites to a host. Real progressives should not be fooled again. The duopoly is a fortress. DP/DP candidates will play to the base during elections but that is just lip service.

  12. JGordon

    Regarding the “Superhero Tendency…” article, this certainly rings true for me. Being INTJ I’ve always had very low emotionality (being diagnosed as “schizoid” at one point, though I regard such diagnoses and the corrupt psychiatric industry as pure hokum these days).

    Well anyway, it offends me greatly that people are so blithely willing to accept corruption and unfairness in our society–which came to a culmination when the Supreme Court heinously decided to rule that Obamacare is Constitutional. Although shortly after that I experienced a great feeling of relief when I realized, upon further consideration, that our society is a piece of crap and deserves to go down the rathole of history as soon as possible.

    Thereafter I came to understand that Obamacare, Citizens United, and the recent McCutcheon v. FEC rulings (just talking about the Supreme Court here) were actually incredibly positive events as far as the planet and sustainability is concerned; with insane and short-sighted happening like this occurring with greater frequency and amplitude every day, America and the American Way of Life will not be around much longer inflicting its pestilence upon the world.

    And this is why I hope you all will be similarly in favor of oligarchs, the Obama regime, the NSA, etc, going forward. The sooner these morons are completely unconstrained by anything resembling reason, morality, due process, etc, the quicker they’ll bring this disgusting mess to an end. That is the surest and most certain way of bringing justice back into the world.

    By the way, smart people would be working on their lifeboats about now as well. That is about as quick a summation of my philosophy as I’ve thought to give yet, all thanks to an article I just saw about justice and personality characteristics!

    1. McMike

      Well for me it is in part a communication problem. I have a burning innate sense of justice and very low tolerance for BS, lies, and cruelty.

      I break this down into a rational analysis of the impacts and causes, and an understanding of complex human systems, and it is all quite well thought out. I hold myself to a very high standard of challenging my biases, and confronting contradictions and possible contradictions., etc. So behind my views are in fact a pretty well constructed and continuously tested intellectual framework.

      But what comes out when I talk about it is mainly passion.

  13. Nobody (the outcast)

    A good piece on MMT and its implications…

    The World According to Modern Monetary Theory

    “But the revelation that the rules of money are not immutable laws of nature but are instead created and constantly modified by people opens up possibilities beyond the scope of our current political imagination. The questions become: What sort of society do we want? Do we have the physical resources to support that society? And finally, how the hell do we muster the political will to get there?”

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Here is one I hope opens up the possibilities beyond the current imagined political scope…beyond the prevailing accepted dogma – Money Creation (exclusively) via the Little People spending it into existence.

    1. abynormal

      (worth the read…on an empty stomach’)
      Mark Lanier is no ordinary trial lawyer. His success has been such that he lives on a 25-acre estate near Houston and hosts lavish parties for hundreds of people each Christmas with entertainment provided in recent years by Miley Cyrus, Bon Jovi and Sting.

      So when he was hired to represent a man who claims a diabetes drug caused him to develop cancer, the pharmaceuticals industry should have expected trouble.

      Urged on by Mr Lanier’s closing argument alleging a “reckless disregard for patient safety”, a federal jury in Lafayette, Louisiana, this week ordered Takeda of Japan and Eli Lilly of the US to pay a record $9bn in damages for hiding evidence of a possible link between their Actos drug and bladder cancer.

      “It was a cesspool of rotten behaviour,” Mr Lanier told the Financial Times afterwards. “The jury wanted to send a message, loud and clear, that it is not acceptable.”

      For Mr Lanier, an ordained Baptist preacher who trades on his Texan charm, it was the latest in a string of big pharma scalps. He rose to prominence in the US a decade ago by winning a $250m verdict against Merck & Co on behalf of a widow who blamed her husband’s fatal heart attack on its Vioxx painkiller.

      His latest victory has set a new bar for drug industry penalties – three times higher than the previous record $3bn US fine paid by GlaxoSmithKline for marketing abuses in 2012. Analysts say the amount is so high that it is almost certain to be reduced by a judge and could yet be overturned on appeal – Takeda and Eli Lilly insist Actos is safe and have vowed to “vigorously challenge” the verdict.

      But the trial, in which jurors heard how Takeda destroyed large volumes of documents related to Actos, has added to a flurry of cases this week that have put the whole pharmaceuticals industry in the dock.

      At first glance there was no direct connection between the Louisiana verdict and the other embarrassing headlines: a bribery probe against GSK in Iraq; a competition inquiry against Novartis and Roche in France; and a report claiming that Roche’s costly Tamiflu antiviral medicine was not proved to be better than aspirin.

      Yet all of them, in one way or another, support the claims of industry critics who say big pharma puts profits before public health – from cherry-picking clinical trial data to conceal health risks to bribing doctors and blocking cheaper medicines.

      Such allegations are fiercely disputed by the companies but even industry leaders admit they have gained resonance among the public. “The jury is still out on a number of these issues but mud sticks when you’re seen as big, bad pharma,” says Trevor Jones, who used to head the industry’s UK lobby group.

      During the two-month Actos trial, Mr Lanier produced emails in which Takeda executives urged colleagues to persuade the US Food and Drug Administration there was no need for a warning about bladder cancer, despite trials having shown a possible link. One said: “Actos is the most important product for Takeda and therefore we need to manage this issue very carefully and successfully not to cause any damage for this product globally.”

      When annual sales peaked at $4.5bn in 2011, the drug accounted for 27 per cent of revenues for Japan’s biggest drugmaker. An FDA warning was eventually issued but Takeda and Eli Lilly, which marketed the drug in the US, say the cancer link remains unproved. They insist it is impossible to know what caused the disease in Terrence Allen, the retired shopkeeper who brought the lawsuit.

      Disputed clinical data are also at the heart of controversy over Tamiflu, although in this case debate is focused on its questionable efficacy rather than health risks. Roche had for years resisted demands from scientists to open its trial data to scrutiny but relented last year – leading to this week’s report by the Cochrane Collaboration, an independent research network, that found no evidence that the drug reduced risk of hospitalisation or death from influenza.

      Tom Jefferson, clinical epidemiologist and co-author of the Cochrane review, said “only the tip of the iceberg” of the evidence was made available to regulators when the drug was approved.

      David Davis, the Conservative MP who has led parliamentary scrutiny of Tamiflu, said that, if the Cochrane study was correct, Roche should repay the £473m spent by the UK government on stockpiling the drug. The Swiss group said it “fundamentally disagrees” with the findings and pointed to a company-funded study which last month concluded that Tamiflu cut deaths by almost a fifth during the swine flu epidemic of 2009.

      But Fiona Godlee, editor-in-chief of the British Medical Journal, which published the Cochrane study, says the case highlights the “irredeemable conflict of interest” between the need for impartial trial data and the industry’s commercial interests. “We have evidence time and time again that they overestimate the benefits [of new drugs] and underestimate the harm.”

      In response to such criticism, drugmakers, including Roche, GSK and Johnson & Johnson, have announced steps over the past year to open their clinical trial data to independent scrutiny. Others remain wary, citing the need to protect intellectual property and patient confidentiality. But the choice is likely to be taken out of companies’ hands: the European parliament last week passed draft legislation requiring detailed summaries of all trial data to be made public.

      “This pressure is not going to go away,” says a senior industry figure. “There is a move towards greater transparency in all areas of society. It is impossible to resist.”

      This trend is also forcing companies to rethink marketing strategies amid growing scrutiny of their financial ties with doctors. GSK announced in December that it would stop paying for doctors to attend medical conferences or to speak on the company’s behalf about products from the beginning of 2016. It also scrapped individual sales targets for its salesmen.

      This was in response both to the group’s $3bn US fine in 2012 for illegal marketing and to the investigation launched by Chinese authorities last July into its alleged bribery of doctors. The revelation this week that GSK was facing similar allegations in Iraq highlighted the global nature of the challenge. But the UK group claims its marketing overhaul has put it at the forefront of industry reform.

      Others have not rushed to follow GSK but there has been a general decline in payments to doctors for promotional speeches. Pfizer, for example, cut its payments by 62 per cent to $8.3m between 2011 and 2012, according to ProPublica, which produces independent investigative journalism.

      Reputational challenges are nothing new for big pharma. In the 1990s, the industry was vilified for denying Aids drugs to poor people in Africa, culminating in the public relations disaster of an industry lawsuit against Nelson Mandela’s South African government. Companies have since sought to repair the damage by pouring billions of dollars into philanthropic drug access programmes on the continent.

      “We learnt our lesson in Africa fairly quickly,” says an industry figure. “But we have been slower to address other issues around transparency and marketing.”

      Pharma executives worry that a souring of public opinion towards the industry will make it harder for them to defend premium prices as health budgets are strained across the developed world. Drug costs are the focus of a French competition inquiry announced this week into whether Roche and Novartis colluded to block a cheaper alternative to their blockbuster Lucentis eye treatment.

      Even the US – by far the world’s most lucrative and liberal drug market – appears to be asking tougher questions amid a recent controversy over the $1,000-a-day price of a new hepatitis C medicine developed by Gilead Sciences. Industry executives acknowledge it will be hard to make the case for more spending on drugs without public trust.

      Mr Jones says that, as a fresh wave of drug innovation starts to lift growth prospects, tackling big pharma’s image problem is the next challenge. “We should be known for saving lives not falsifying data and bribing doctors.”

      Back in Louisiana, a further 2,700 Actos patients are queueing up to sue Takeda and Eli Lilly, promising plenty more business for Mr Lanier. The companies must now decide whether to keep fighting or seek a settlement – presenting an early dilemma for Christophe Weber, the Frenchman who is about to become Takeda’s first foreign president.

      Mr Weber, former head of vaccines at GSK, was recruited to help raise the global profile of a company that is a household name in Japan but less well known elsewhere. He cannot have counted on a Texan lawyer helping do the job for him – albeit in a most unwelcome way.

  14. Banger

    I recommend reading the Vltchek article in Counterpunch–he also had an earlier article some days back.

    1. Wayne Reynolds

      It is so sad to realize the horror and inhumanity that is perpetrated around the globe by the USA. The destruction of Iraq, all the human suffering, the use of depleted uranium bombs on an entire population, and now this agony in Ukraine. If there is any justice in this world the United States would be wiped off the face of the planet. There can be no redemption for a country or society that was founded on genocide, built by slaves and ever since its inception has never ceased to inflict pain and misery across the globe, all in the name of profit.

      1. hunkerdown

        When all suffering is seen as compensable, only suffering will be seen as compensable.

  15. LizinOregon

    As I read the piece on daycare costing more than university I thought again of something that doesn’t ever seem to be part of the discussion. That is the fact that there are just too many people on this planet. So I am glad to see anything connected to child-bearing increasing in cost.

    But let me emphasize that I don’t think pit bulls are the solution.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef


      Two problems actually.

      1. Too many people
      2. Too much consumption per people, especially in ‘some’ countries.

      The latter refers to ‘consumption brutes.’

      We can dig up gross, unsavory stories of the consumption atrocities of these consumption brutes, these consumption savages…actually minimal effort to dig the stories up. They are probably all around us in the First World. You don’t need to read travel books to find them.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        These consumption savages will have their own karma to deal with, I suppose. Probably nothing to do with any laws of economics*.

        * Let us not delude ourselves the economics is a science, much less a solid intellectual discipline. And one merely is in denial when one hopes to exit a dark cave burning ‘laws’ of economics.

  16. scraping_by

    RE: GW and the warmongering public.

    The commenters to GW’s original post are accurate that the militarized public is a phenomenon of the Unreality Industry. Both the suppression of dissent and the fantasy world of The American Crusade are Big Lies created and supported by the MSM. But there is an irreducible minority who have heart-deep approval for any war they’ve got.

    Anne Wilson Schaef, a psychologist writing in the 1980’s, drew the parallel between those who support all wars to people in abusive relationships. Like the battered wife, they try to hide the damage they’ve been done, they make excuses for the batterer, and they keep coming back for more. Absolute and irrational loyalty. America love it or leave it.

    It’s a construction that also works for people who are victimized by the economic order, so it may be a generally useful viewpoint.

    I know I look upon the absolutist rantings with more sorrow than anger. Their addiction to imperialism expresses their fear rather than our needs. Now if they could just stop screwing things up for the rest of us.

    1. McMike

      War Is a Force That Gives Us Meaning (ISBN 1586480499) is a 2002 nonfiction book by Pulitzer Prize journalist Chris Hedges. In the book, Hedges draws on classical literature and his experiences as a war correspondent to argue that war seduces entire societies, creating fictions that the public believes and relies on to continue to support conflicts. He also describes how those who experience war may find it exhilarating and addictive.

  17. Emma

    Another really good read about why nations go to war, is a book by Professor Richard Ned Lebow of King’s College London. The book is called ‘A Cultural Theory of International Relations’ and in it, Lebow leverages both ancient Greek theories, and the psychology of human behavior. Lebow proposes four motives for war: appetite, spirit, reason and fear, which all stem from the need for, and influence of, self-esteem.

  18. abynormal

    New IMF Word Alert:

    The world’s premier financial counselor is trying to coin a new word for finance ministers and central bankers: “spillbacks.”

    Not “spillovers,” a term frequently used to describe the beneficial or damaging effects a country’s economic policies can have on other nations.

    Not even “spill back,” a term for what happens with clogged pipes (or toilet mishaps).

    The International Monetary Fund‘s new term became official Saturday as part of its efforts to encourage the U.S. Federal Reserve to proceed cautiously in pulling back its easy-money policies.

    “Monetary policy settings in major countries should continue to be carefully calibrated and clearly communicated, with cooperation among policymakers to help manage spillovers and spillbacks,” the IMF’s steering committee said in its official communiqué.

    “Spillbacks,” in IMF thinking, are economic feedback loops. (They’re not to be confused with the civil engineering term for a traffic bottleneck.)

    So in the case of China, one spillback of its yuan policy might be depressed Chinese growth: If Beijng’s yuan policy is suppressing U.S. output, then demand for Chinese products from the world’s largest economy will also likely be lower.

    In this case, however, the IMF is most likely trying to give the Fed an economically sound reason not to exit its easy-money policies too quickly.

    (clogged from all their bullsh!t)

  19. dearieme

    “Social Security, Treasury target taxpayers for their parents’ decades-old debts” is one of the oddest stories I’ve ever read on a link from NC. The federal government seems to combine hair-raising incompetence with its predilection for fomenting warfare around the world.

    1. Linden

      This is a thing that’s been happening off and on for a long time. I’m chilled to read that the government is now going to pour more money and effort into it.

  20. just me

    THAT ALL CAPS LINK — I mean, erm, that all caps link by the attorney Lenore Albert to Lexis Nexis was astounding! Glaski! That’s one of ours, isn’t it? Isn’t that the one we wrote letters to get published? Yes, it is: And the attorney says it’s flagged by Lexis Nexis to show as a win for the bank?

    For example Galope v Deutsche Bank should have a green flag, should include the core term of LIBOR, and at the very least phrase the case summary that the homeowner won. Are you kidding me? I am so furious you are lucky you are in New York or else I would be on your doorstep right now. Lueras should be a green flag as well. Where is the Ballard v Bank of America opinion on the motion to dismiss which I defeated? You have yellow flagged Lueras v Bank of America, Glaski v Bank of America, West v JP Morgan Chase, Jolley v Chase, Ragland v US Bank… and made such weak banker friendly case summaries your lips must be chaffed. I cannot find the Ballard v Bank of America opinion where I defeated the bank’s motion to dismiss, but the opinions where they won the denial of class certification and motion for summary judgment pop right out there. There is a definite pattern and practice I can PROVE…

    scanning to the bottom — yes it matters:

    Do you know how many homeowners were forced to commit suicide due to the massive fraud? The massive fraud you continued to perpetrate through the way you slanted the case summaries and careful selection of core terms? You have blood on your hands. You appear to be nothing more than corrupt lying bastards with your hand in the pocket of the banks.

    scanning back up

    Do you know that one of my clients DIED as a DIRECT result of a wrongful foreclosure? Although a judge halted the sale, the banks went ahead and had the sheriff take my client who was on oxygen – off of the oxygen hooked up in her home and throw her out in the street? Only a psychopath could do that to another human being. Is your company being run by psychopaths or are your hiring psychopaths to write up the case summaries in this area of law?

    You know, I can’t see Lexis Nexis. Can someone do a story with screenshots of these cases? That thing about history being written by the victors? It looks like even when we win we lose when history is reported by the bankers.

    1. just me

      Thinking, this misreporting of what a case actually said — that’s where we get corporate personhood from, and it didn’t start with Citizens United, it started in 1886 when the clerk of the court misreported the case in the headnotes of a railroad case (Santa Clara County v. Southern Pacific Railroad Company).

      It was in the headnotes!
      In other words, the first sentence of “The defendant Corporations are persons…” has nothing to do with the case and wasn’t the issue that the Supreme Court decided on.

  21. Ulysses

    David Sirota has a neat little summary about one of the more infuriating aspects of neoliberal ideology:
    “”the argument seems to be that the rich and politically powerful should be permitted to collude to preserve their wealth and power. Meanwhile, the less rich and less politically powerful must be prevented from exercising their most basic rights to collective action.

    The problems with such a twisted ideology should be obvious. For one thing, there’s the sheer hypocrisy of insinuating that the ruling class has a right to stand in solidarity with each other, but everyone else should be prevented from exercising similar rights. Additionally, the argument posits that the real problem in an America plagued by economic inequality is that workers have too much power and the ruling class has too little — not vice versa.

    But perhaps worst of all is what all this says about the most basic notions of how our market economy now operates.

    If, say, true market competition threatens to raise wages or allow laborers to be fairly paid for their work, then competition often gets stifled. If the most basic democratic freedoms to form a union are going to be exercised, then workers are often intimidated into never exercising that freedom in the first place. In short, the technology, sports and political worlds seem to be saying that markets should neither be free or fair — they should instead be rigged to enrich the rich and to never work for workers.”

    1. just me

      Worker power is being further diminished as status of employees with rights is replaced by contractors with none, not even minimum wage, much less union. I left a comment about that yesterday in Matt Stoller’s diary about Uber — that the Uber drivers as part of their San Francisco lawsuit are asking the court to determine that they are in fact employees, not contractors:

  22. Jeff N

    oh, I never even noticed that Antidotes w/ words were never printed… no wonder the words got cut out of the antidote I submitted a while back, even though I thought the words were hella cute because they were in fancy French… ;)

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