Links 6/26/14

Why artists are disappearing from the internet The Hill (TA). They aren’t disappearing, but being disappeared.

Humanity Surprised It Still Hasn’t Figured Out Better Alternative To Letting Power-Hungry Assholes Decide Everything Onion (David L)

We Can Eliminate the Major Tornado Threat in Tornado Alley World Scientific (Chuck L)

The plan to print actual houses shows off the best and worst of 3D printing Pando

Researcher Charged in Major HIV Vaccine Fraud Case ABC (furzy mouse)

Hospital Networks Are Leaking Data, Leaving Critical Devices Vulnerable Wired

Official: Flight 370 ‘on autopilot’ until fuel expired USA Today

Great Graphic: Austerity and Employment Marc Chandler

If You Think Climate Politics In the US Are Crazy, Wait Till You See What Just Happened in Australia Mother Jones

Pettis: A Chinese soft landing is bad news MacroBusiness

China blasts proposal to name D.C. street for dissident Liu Xiaobo McClatchy (furzy mouse)

It’s Bad In France Business Insider

News of the Obvious: NML et al. Oppose the Stay Mark Weidemaier, Credit Slips


Russia renounces right to send troops into Ukraine, West demands end to fighting Christian Science Monitor. What about “civil war” don’t you understand?

Ukraine Due to Ink Austerity Pact with EU Common Dreams (furzy mouse)

US deep state tries to cut its few ties with Russia failed evolution


Iran Secretly Sending Drones and Supplies Into Iraq, U.S. Officials Say New York Times (furzy mouse)

U.S. “Intelligence”: Nothing For Something Moon of Alabama

The Chaos In Iraq Is By DESIGN George Washington

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

Get a warrant! Today’s cellphone privacy decision in Plain English SCOTUSblog

High Court Ruling On Search Warrants Is Broader Than Cellphones NPR (Chuck L). While this is a really welcome development, don’t forget: none of this applies when you are transiting into the US.

Microsoft lawyer says future is ‘bleak’ because of NSA surveillance RT (Chuck L)

It’s not just phones that have been hacked, it’s British power Channel 4

Obama’s ‘drone memo’ is finally public. Now show us the library of secret law Guardian (Nikki)

Alan Grayson: Is Keith Alexander Selling Classified Information to the Banks? Marcy Wheeler

Obamacare Launch

How big cities will suffer in states that snubbed Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion Washington Post

Dueling narratives: Republicans Finally Admit Why They Really Hate Obamacare New York Magazine v. ObamaCare’s Tired Triumphalists Wall Street Journal

Does Chief Justice John Roberts show a certain casualness about the truth? Richard Posner, Slate

Bernie Sanders Thinks Hillary Is Eric Cantor Huffington Post (RR)

”The Revolution Has Begun”: How the Gun Industry Drives the Violent Rhetoric of the NRA TruthOut (furzy mouse)

Wingnuts and liberals’ bizarre role reversal: Why Export-Import Bank politics are so perverse Dave Dayen, Salon

Groups seek UN aid for Detroit water shut-offs Detroit News (John L)

Freedom Rider: Detroit and Iraq Margaret Kimberley, Black Agenda Report

U.S. Economy Shrank in First Quarter by Most in Five Years Bloomberg

Difficult Obamacare Measures Lead to Swing in GDP Reading WSJ Economics

Banks Can Still Have Fun Prop Trading in Rates Matt Levine, Bloomberg

Barclays’ shares fall on US lawsuit Financial Times. I know action on the HFT/dark pools front is better than none, but Schneiderman has been so much less bold than Benjamin Lawsky (who has a hell of a lot less powerful office) in going after bank abuses that I find it hard to get excited.

What Barclays is accused of Telegraph

‘Speculation, Trading, and Bubbles’ Mark Thoma

NY Fed’s Bogus Estimate of Return on College and Brookings Misses the Student Loan Crisis Angry Bear

Expected Bill Would Allow Private Student Loan Debt To Be Discharged In Bankruptcy Consumerist

Kids Value Achievement Over Caring Because They Think Their Parents Do Too Slate

The Central Paradox of the 21st Century Pieria

The World’s Most Important Spectator London Review of Books. On Obama.

Antidote du jour:

Links sleeping puppies in alternating colors

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. Skeptic

    Humanity Surprised It Still Hasn’t Figured Out Better Alternative To Letting Power-Hungry Assholes Decide Everything Onion (David L)

    This Onion article is worth billions of Economic/Financial/Political papers. Humanity is a flawed species, unable to properly govern itself. Not only that but as we eagerly, beaverly work toward Singularity we marvel at the Science which will extinguish us.

    Grow the GDP!

    1. diptherio

      Unfortunately, even the clever writers at the Onion apparently can’t think that far outside the box.

      “Maybe we should try letting a kind, responsible person run things for a change,” Cairo resident Nathifa Bakhoum told reporters. “I, for one, don’t want to be told what to do by another narcissist who’s drunk on power and who has absolutely no regard for my well-being. It’s just a thought, but perhaps we could go with a good, decent human next time, or at least someone who’s not a completely egotistical pile of dogshit. That seems like a good thing to try at least once, right? Could we even do that? It’s probably worth a shot.”

      But power corrupts, etc…this is no solution at all.

      The real alternative is cooperative systems of group decision making; and they do already exist in the form of Credit Unions, Food Co-ops, Worker Co-ops, Land Trusts, Housing Cooperatives, etc. The article is correct, however, in pointing out that before cooperativism can really thrive, we need a shift in our social psychology.

      When pressed for further comment, however, every member of humanity agreed that the current system, though deeply flawed, remains far better than one in which they actually have to make decisions for themselves.

      A large part of the problem, imo, is the ingrained sense of helplessness and incompetence that our traditional economic and political systems have inculcated in each one of us, to one extent or another. Which is why I think we need to spend at least some of our time combating this negative psychological set in ourselves and others.
      Scaling-Up Democracy Through Empowerment ~Michael Johnson

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Applying to Money Creation, the best way to overcome this sense of helplessness and incompetence is to create money via the people spending it into existence, instead of MMT’s description (i.e. do not change…just accept the status quo – unless some MMTers want to step forward now…right now, right here…and join us – actually only me so far) of money creation via the government spending it into existence.

        Empower the People…not Big Government, not Big Business and not Big Religion.

        1. abynormal

          here’s thinking of U:
          “Unfortunately our nation has been enslaved by debt. Our current system is not an economic system at all, but an ecocidal system; an intrinsic obsolescence of conspicuous consumption. It’s a grave misfortune that efficiency, sustainability, and preservation are the enemies of our socioeconomic system. This has got to be the most bizarre delusion in the history of human thought, a retarded Ponzi scheme en masse. But it’s difficult to get people to understand something when money, and especially debt, prevents them from understanding it. Instead of ownership, give us strategic access. Instead of equity, give us equality. Instead of one-track-minded profit, give us open-minded people. Instead of unsustainable monetary-based economics, give us a sustainable resource-based economy, which is basically the scientific method applied to ecological and social concerns. As tough as it is to hear, nature is a dictatorship. We can either listen to it and fall into harmony or deny it and suffer. Ask yourself this question by Fleet & Lasn:
          “When the economic system fails, will we know how to behave, how to act, how to appreciate, how to value, how to survive, how to be and how to love in a world that no longer defines relations by money?””

            1. abynormal

              realistically i don’t see positive results from just asking for it…Ulysses has it going on:

              Ulysses June 26, 2014 at 1:47 pm

              Simple arithmetic has me convinced that 99% of us, if we are determined on united action, don’t need to get the 1% to “go along” with our plans, we should just do as we please with no concern for hurting the interests of parasitical kleptocrats.

              1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

                Ulysses may be just asking for it or he may be asking we unite together.

                We all have our parts to play.

                Some may chop wood.

                Some may carry water.

                Some to wash rice and some to clean up.

                Maybe not today or maybe it will be.

                Many positive (and negative) things happened before without intentional planning or people foreseeing it, though afterwards, we only slapped ourselves saying ‘but of course.’

                1. abynormal

                  uniting will be necessary but it all has to start with the self

                  “The future says:

                  Dear mortals;
                  I know you are busy with your colourful lives;
                  I have no wish to waste the little time that remains
                  On arguments and heated debates;
                  But before I can appear
                  Please, close your eyes, sit still
                  And listen carefully
                  To what I am about to say;
                  I haven’t happened yet, but I will.
                  I can’t pretend it’s going to be
                  Business as usual.
                  Things are going to change.
                  I’m going to be unrecognisable.
                  Please, don’t open your eyes, not yet.
                  I’m not trying to frighten you.
                  All I ask is that you think of me
                  Not as a wish or a nightmare, but as a story
                  You have to tell yourselves –
                  Not with an ending
                  In which everyone lives happily ever after,
                  Or a B-movie apocalypse,
                  But maybe starting with the line
                  ‘To be continued…’
                  And see what happens next.
                  Remember this; I am not
                  Written in stone
                  But in time –
                  So please don’t shrug and say
                  What can we do?
                  It’s too late, etc, etc, etc.
                  Dear mortals,
                  You are such strange creatures
                  With your greed and your kindness,
                  And your hearts like broken toys;
                  You carry fear with you everywhere
                  Like a tiny god
                  In its box of shadows.
                  You love festivals and music
                  And good food.
                  You lie to yourselves
                  Because you’re afraid of the dark.
                  But the truth is: you are in my hands
                  And I am in yours.
                  We are in this together,
                  Face to face and eye to eye;
                  We’re made for each other.
                  Now those of you who are still here;
                  Open your eyes and tell me what you see.”
                  Nick Drake

          1. Johann Sebastian Schminson

            At the very bottom of it all — that is, if you took a snapshot of humanity, in total, at this very moment — there is no debt. Debt is more of a construct than race. What we do have is foolishness, greed, and misallocation.

        2. Calgacus


          The problem is just what you mean by “the people spending it into existence”. I would appreciate clarification. On one reading, I oppose it. On another, I support it.

          “The people” can already create “money”. “Everyone can create money, the problem is getting it accepted.” (Minsky). Banks and governments have solved that problem (Modern banks, mainly by being backed by modern governments) How would you solve it for “the people”?

      2. TimR

        “a shift in our social psychology”

        I’m reading Morris Berman’s book Wandering God right now.. I think you (and many on this site) would find it interesting. So far, it’s very much about the different psychology of hunter-gatherers vs those in “civilization.” Very thought provoking stuff.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          A shift in social psychology or how we perceive (anything) can have a huge impact.

          Yesterday, the Sun revolved around us.

          Today, we revolve around the Sun.

          It’s interesting to note that in a largely, say, Buddhist nation, generation after generation, it remains largely Buddhist.

          People don’t seem to seek and find out what else is out there.

          So, in a communist country, one day, everyone believes in the communism and the next day, the same everyone now believes in capitalism.

          That’s quite of bit of shift in perception and social psychology…and here, the mechanism of the shift fascinates (or puzzles) me…which is good, as we have to ask a lot of questions everyday just to know we still exist.

  2. Ned Ludd

    Google’s response to photographers and site owners in the U.S.? “If you don’t like it, mark your site not to be searched.” Put another way – “the only way to stop us is to remove yourself from the Internet.”

    I would trade the last 20 years of technology for a return the the non-commercial Internet that existed before Clinton privatized it. Advertising was banned on the Internet in the early 1990’s. The tech company where I worked discussed how to provide technical support to our users on Usenet without crossing the line into advertising. We decided it would be okay to respond to questions about our products and to maybe include our website address in the signature at the end of our responses.

  3. trish

    On Great walls to protect from tornadoes: “The third one can be in the south of Texas and Louisiana.”
    gee, maybe we can kill two birds with one stone…keep people out. Probably not in the right part of texas, but we could extend it…

    far more likely to die in a mobile home during a tornado…and generally the poor live in these, many in the south, in tornado alley…perhaps we as a society could do something about that, as well…

    1. James Levy

      This reminds me of the bewildering response in a Midwestern town last year after their school got smashed by a tornado. The populace was appalled that the government was going to mandate that they install a storm cellar in the rebuilt school because they saw this as an affront to their local autonomy and a mandated tax without their consent. Dead kids are tragic, but “Don’t Tread On Me”. You see, as a New Yorker by birth and rearing, this is just plain insane to me. From my perspective these people have no clue as to the difference between freedom and license. I’m sure some libertarians will chime in against me, but isn’t this a common sense question when it comes to the lives of children? I mean, they can’t make the decision to protect themselves, so isn’t it up to someone in authority to do that?

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        There is a similar conundrum where we believe children can be protected (if not apparent short term) if the government mandates that they be fed organic foods only…not just at school, but at home as well.

        The only difference is while the government can’t control tornadoes, it can do something about food producers.

      2. MtnLife

        I mean, they can’t make the decision to protect themselves, so isn’t it up to someone in authority to do that?
        Not based on that reasoning. Very. Slippery. Slope. Where do you stop? I have visions of Vermin Supreme’s Secret Dental Police in my head. Floss or you will be sent to the Dental Re-education Camps! As it is Big Brother has morphed into Big (Helicopter) Mother and the fewer reasons we give her to dote on us the better. I’m all for single payer health care (and live a very healthy life) but would seriously chafe at someone monitoring everything I put into my body. Last I checked it didn’t have a “Property Of:” stamp anywhere. Life as it is meant to be lived is full contact, not a germ-free nerf house. I feel people should be protected from predators but so much “from themselves”.

        isn’t this a common sense question when it comes to the lives of children?
        Along with “fighting terrorism”, this is generally the phrase used to pass the most BS legislation. Aside from that, the kids should be protected from the stupidity of their elders. Instead of localized mandate on that particular school change public (school) building codes in tornado alley. Could also put large labels on schools (and all public buildings) that don’t have storm cellars labeling them as “Unsafe”. How long would you send your kid to an “unsafe” school? Seriously though, how has this not happened already due to insurance rates? I can imagine the fear of payout over losing a couple kids would spur this into their policies.

        1. James Levy

          So it’s a slippery slope to demand that schools in tornado alley have shelters–the next step is government control of everything!!! Give me a fucking break.

          1. MtnLife

            No, you apparently stopped reading after the first line. I proposed a number of ways to do it, just not with the reasoning you provided.

      3. Johann Sebastian Schminson

        You’ve got to be butt stupid to live in tornado alley and not grasp the value of a storm cellar.

        Apparently, we’re not in Kansas, anymore.

      4. Fíréan

        By the text which you have given to us one can easily interpret that the populace where appalled that the government was going to mandate, I do not see anything to indicate that they disputed the need or benefit of the storm cellar.
        ” The populace was appalled that the government was going to mandate that they install a storm cellar in the rebuilt school because they saw this as an affront to their local autonomy and a mandated tax without their consent.”

  4. Jim Haygood

    “What people are dissatisfied with is not Hillary Clinton,” Bernie Sanders replied. “People are dissatisfied with the fact that 95 percent of all new incomes go to the top 1 percent. That’s what people are dissatisfied with.”

    Quite so. Hillary is so poor that she has to rent out unused bedrooms in her $5.5 million Washington DC home on airbnb to pay the light bill.

    Bring your own soap, washcloth and towel — this is strictly a no-frills operation.

    For the Clintons, the flush days when they were flogging nights in the Lincoln bedroom on Craigslist are but a fond memory.

    With a sly wink, Hillary let guests know that she would turn a blind eye if they stole the White House towels as a souvenir.

    1. McMike

      Actually, the flush days were when Bill left office: Post-office six-digit speaking fees and corporate sinecures is what catapulted them into the 1%.

    2. heresy101

      In response to bad reviews and low sales of Hillary’s new book, someone on Zerohedge left this 1997 Telegraph article by Ambrose Evans-Pritchard on his leaving Washington and his disgust with the Clintons:

      Besides bringing back information on how sleazy Bill and Hillary are, the look of the early internet is a fascinating look at the past. The Clintons haven’t changed, but the internet has improved immensely.

      1. Greg Henderson

        Thanks Heresy for linking this … worth the read …. I enjoy reading Ambrose Evans-Pritchard and you are right – it is neat to go back into early internet for data.

  5. Banger

    Great article: The Chaos In Iraq Is By DESIGN.

    How obvious has all this been? If you want an Empire then you divide and conquer–it’s really easy. What is fascinating to me is the wholesale acceptance by much of the intelligentsia of the idea that we go into countries with the idea of improving the situation and then we make “mistakes.” No, mistakes weren’t made. Yes, some of this was fueled by radical Israel-firsters (traitors) but that wasn’t the main impetus–the main impetus was to create a global Empire controlled via both outward military force and covert operations as the U.S. has used since WWII. It’s all there hiding in plain sight and the crap you read in the foreign policy publications still drones on about, for the most part, utter nonsense that never focuses on the central policy of chaos everywhere that has come out of Washington since 9/11 (that new Pearl Harbor the neocons believed was the sine qua non of global empire)–I remember thinking a couple of days after the shock of 9/11 diminished having the Church Lady’s “how convenient” quip constantly in my head.

    As I’ve said many times–the left has to break away from the mainstream narrative and come to an agreement that the national security state is the Imperial State and that’s all it is–there is no “nation-building” going on except as PR and Potemkin village projects with some exceptions in any of the countries we mess with. ISIS/ISIL is not some random bunch of crazy Arabs (our favorite meme to demonize the region and that civilization).

    1. David Lentini

      The problem is whose empire? Unlike the Romans and British, we don’t have a stated public policy of conquering other countries. So, we haven’t allocated the resources needed to bring the control needed to establish reliable suzerainties, puppet states, etc. As Machiavelli explained in The Prince, it’s not enough to conquer: you have to bring the conqured pepole into your culture or you’ll never have peace. And peace is needed ultimately to reap the benefits of empire—else you’ll bleed yourself dry of arimes, materials, and money before you can reap the economic benefits of controling the resources of the conquered lands.

      So, what is the endgame if perpetual war will fail eventually? I fear that the shadow government that has been installed over the past 25–30 years operates on some sort of eschatological fantasy that a new order will arise spontaneously if we only destroy the old order. Either that, or they are planning to sow such murderous chaos that the US will be forced (perhaps by another 9/11?) to become fully militarized and truly conquer and occupy major regions of the Middle East.

      But looking back at Machiavelli again, then what? “Boots on the ground” can remain only so long. The tin-pot dictators and inept “procounsel” we insert to run these places can’t form stable governments, let alone competent civil orders.

      1. paul

        If you have a war centred economy, designed to serve only a small proportion of humanity (say between 0.1-1%), it shouldn’t be that hard to provide them the peace they need to enjoy these benefits.

        1. munanomaniac

          Exactly the tenor of the comment, Thorstein Veblen wrote 1920 about then – bestseller of M. Keynes
          ( on Versailles Treaty:

          “At the same time the same
          facts go to show how faithfully its point of view and its line of
          argument fall in with the prevailing attitude of thoughtful men
          toward the same range of questions. It is the attitude of men
          accustomed to take political documents at their face value …”

          “Writing at about the date of its formulation and before its
          effectual working had been demonstrated, Mr Keynes accepts the
          Treaty as a definitive formulation of the terms of peace, as a
          conclusive settlement rather than a strategic point of departure
          for further negotiations and a continuation of warlike enterprise
          — and this in spite of the fact that Mr Keynes was continuously
          and intimately in touch with the Peace Conference during all
          those devious negotiations by which the Elder Statesmen of the
          Great Powers arrived at the bargains embodied in this instrument.
          These negotiations were quite secret, of course, as is fitting
          that negotiations among Elder Statesmen should be. But for all
          their vulpine secrecy, the temper and purposes of that hidden
          Conclave of political hucksters were already becoming evident to
          outsiders a year ago, and it is all the more surprising to find
          that an observer so shrewd and so advantageously placed as Mr
          Keynes has been led to credit them with any degree of bonafides
          or to ascribe any degree of finality to the diplomatic
          instruments which came out of their bargaining.
          The Treaty was designed, in substance, to re-establish the
          status quo ante, with a particular view to the conservation of
          international jealousies. Instead of its having brought a
          settlement of the world’s peace, the Treaty (together with the
          League) has already shown itself to be nothing better than a
          screen of diplomatic verbiage behind which the Elder Statesmen of
          the Great Powers continue their pursuit of political chicane and
          imperialistic aggrandisement. All this is patent now, and it
          needs no peculiar degree of courage to admit it. It is also
          scarcely too much to say that all this should have been
          sufficiently evident to Mr Keynes a year ago. But in failing to
          take note of this patent state of the case Mr Keynes only
          reflects the commonplace attitude of thoughtful citizens. His
          discussion, accordingly, is a faithful and exceptionally
          intelligent commentary on the language of the Treaty, rather than
          the consequences which were designed to follow from it or the
          uses to which it is lending itself. It would perhaps be an
          ungraceful overstatement to say that Mr Keynes has successfully
          avoided the main facts in the case; but an equally broad
          statement to the contrary would be farther from the truth.”

      2. Carolinian

        I think the shadow government is mostly interested in making money. War business is good business. Not for nothing are some of the country’s wealthiest counties clustered around D.C. Like you say if they were really interested in conquest like the Romans they would act differently.

        It’s just another grift like so much these days. The real reason all those folks are so mad at Snowden is that he is threatening their incomes.

      3. Banger

        David that is exactly the questions we need to ask! The Empire is run, largely, for the benefit of an international ruling class and not the nation state of the USA. This ruling class is highly complex and not a strict hierarchy but a web of relationships, deals, side deals along with more formal structures like the IMF, WTO and the floating bureaucracy of “negotiators” that attend talks and conferences around the world like pro-Tennis players making the rounds of various tournaments. There is no Emperor in the Empire only a virtual one which consists of the sum-total of all those relationships cited–eventually those systems will be mediated through cyber-systems (already, partly, in place) and my guess is that real policies (as opposed to the fake posturing of most politicians) will come out of some massive networked computer system.

        1. neo-realist

          Sort of an internationalized version of what Bertram Gross was talking about in Friendly Fascism, written about 30 plus years ago—Big Business, MIC elites in relationships leveraging power over our political and media structures. While they didn’t agree on everything, they agreed and cooperated on the interests that were most important to them.

      4. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        David, as long as the Dollar is backed by Black Gold, we need to be everywhere there is significant Black Gold, to protect the illusion that we can print as much money as we want…even if we, ourselves, are energy independent, while others are not.

    2. abynormal

      shouldn’t be long: When a country has five percent of the world’s population but does fifty percent of its military spending, then the persuasive powers of that country are on the decline. ~Syriana

    3. Jagger

      The Chaos From WashingtonsBlog

      ———–Its roots can be traced, at least in part, to a paper published in 1996 by an Israeli thinktank, the Institute for Advanced Strategic and Political Studies. Entitled “A clean break: a new strategy for securing the realm”, it was intended as a political blueprint for the incoming government of Binyamin Netanyahu. As the title indicates, it advised the right-wing Mr Netanyahu to make a complete break with the past by adopting a strategy “based on an entirely new intellectual foundation, one that restores strategic initiative and provides the nation the room to engage every possible energy on rebuilding Zionism …”———-

      It certainly seems we are following a strategy created by an Israeli thinktank. But should I ask why?? Should I ask who were the authors of this Israeli thinktank strategy paper which the US seems to be following to a T?

      ——And yet, it seems that for even very well-informed analysts, it is beyond the pale to raise the possibility that foreign policy elites in the US and Israel, like all virtually all the ambitious hegemons before them on the world stage, might have quite coldly and consciously fomented open-ended chaos in order to achieve their overlapping strategic objectives in this part of the world.—-

      —-“When we invaded and occupied Iraq, we didn’t just militarily defeat Iraq’s armed forces – we dismantled their army, and their police force, along with all the other institutions that held the country together. The educational system was destroyed, and not reconstituted. The infrastructure was pulverized, and never restored. Even the physical hallmarks of a civilized society – roads, bridges, electrical plants, water facilities, museums, schools – were bombed out of existence or else left to fall into disrepair. Along with that, the spiritual and psychological infrastructure that enables a society to function – the bonds of trust, allegiance, and custom – was dissolved, leaving Iraqis to fend for themselves in a war of all against all.—–

      Sounds exactly like the strategy used by Israel against the Palestinians.

      Sad that it make me hope that perhaps there actually exists a hell. Clearly, we are not going to get justice here on this earth for the powerful. Hell seems to be the last hope.

      Personally I think the author nailed it. He is absolutely right. In good conscience, I can never support Elizabeth Warren, regardless of all her populism, because she is owned lock, stock and barrel by Israel. Like so many others in this corrupted democracy.

      1. James Levy

        Most people are lost in a fairy tale of “poor little Israel”, completely unaware that Israel holds absolute military dominance over her neighbors and other the us or the Russians nuking it out of existence, need fear nothing. The fact on the ground of a overpowering, mean Israel is out of bounds for a host of reasons, the most important of which is that the “poor little Israel” narrative serves American foreign policy interests extremely well. That you have a cadre of American Zionists (most but not all of whom are Jewish) that push that meme for all it’s worth doesn’t change the underlying logic that it persists because it is in the interests of the American governing elite for it to exist. And I think it puffs up the already overweening self-image of those neocons who are Jewish to imagine that they are the horse and America the cart. If Israel did something that our Power Elite/Deep State really got angry over, they’d be disabused of that notion in no time flat.

  6. Carolinian

    Pieria: good article. Sounds like he’s advocating that thing called socialism. One can’t help but suspect the old order always knew this day was coming which is why they tried so hard to kill off option B.

    Indeed the Cold War–far more insane than the War on Terror–can be seen as a kind of war of economic ideas as well as about freedom (our take) or security (the Soviet’s). Cuba had to be sanctioned because Cuba couldn’t be allowed to succeed.

    Since we won the Cold War guess we’re in the soup now. Should be interesting.

    1. F. Beard

      You do everyone a disservice by suggesting that the only alternative to fascism is socialism. There’s such a thing as justice, don’t you know? And it’s neither fascist nor socialist though it does have rights for the poor.

        1. F. Beard

          Yes indeed. Read the Old Testament and you’ll find such things as:

          1) Family farms that could not be permanently lost.
          2) Full debt forgiveness every 7 years.
          3) A ban on usury from fellow countrymen.
          4) Gleaning right for the poor at harvest time.
          5) The right to eat one’s fill (but not carry away) the food in any field, orchard, and vineyard.
          6) A special tithe for the poor every 3 years.
          7) Free food at feasts for the poor.
          8) Restitution for theft.

      1. Carolinian

        If you don’t think such a duality exists then by all means propose the basic income guarantee and see how long it takes for it to be called socialistic and un-American. You may not think there’s a “war between ideas” but believe me the other side does. And since the Cold War ended they are pretty sure they won.

        1. F. Beard

          They can call me socialist all they want and I’ll refute them with the definition* of socialism.

          Note also that no one called G. W. Bush’s stimulus checks “socialism.” Why? Because each INDIVIDUAL was in charge of how he spent his check. Socialists loath individual freedom cause, cause they know better.

          *socialism: “a political and economic theory of social organization that advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by the community as a whole.” from

  7. JohnB

    On “The Central Paradox of the 21st Century” – i.e. that technology is making jobs obsolete:
    I don’t understand why people seem to think, that just because technology is replacing jobs, that there is any less work to be done, and that full employment is any less of a desirable goal?

    There is at least one area of work that is effectively infinite: Scientific research.

    There is never going to be a lack of research, scientific discovery and technological development to be done, and there isn’t really a limit to how many people you can put to work in these areas – so there is always going to be more useful work that can be done, which can be used to pursue full employment.

    The argument over whether or not we should strive for full employment is a different one though: I am not arguing that that is desirable, only arguing that the idea that it is not possible or impractical in the long run, is flat out wrong.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      I see it differently.

      Lets’ assume, one day, technology can replace ALL jobs (doing a limit analysis here); in that case, there would be no work to be done…by humans.

      And if we have an egalitarian society, then that fruit of technology can be shared by all, instead of the 0.01% using technology to war on the 99.99%, as it is done right now.

      In that utopian case, there is no need for full employment (in the traditional sense of employment, meaning a job, whereas singing, playing, etc can be thought of as work, thus as employment, at a time when robots/machines can provide everything we need in this utopia).

      Furthermore, while scientific research may never exhaust itself, neither will singing, story telling, or infinite number of other human activities.

      1. F. Beard

        Furthermore, while scientific research may never exhaust itself, neither will singing, story telling, or infinite number of other human activities. Beefy

        Correct and all that “work” will be meaningful BY DEFINITION if it is FREELY chosen and not under the duress of earning a living.

      2. Carolinian

        Sounds like you’re advocating socialism as well. We just have to get the one percent to go along–easy peasey.

        Of course they may have read their Adam Smith part two and decide we eaters are now superfluous. Soylent Green or Matrix…take your pick.

        1. Ulysses

          Simple arithmetic has me convinced that 99% of us, if we are determined on united action, don’t need to get the 1% to “go along” with our plans, we should just do as we please with no concern for hurting the interests of parasitical kleptocrats.

          1. Carolinian

            I agree, actually, but somebody needs to tell them. The situation in Egypt, for example, is quite ugly.

      3. JohnB

        You can’t replace all jobs. Scientific research is literally infinite – even if you are able to mass-manufacture robots with AI providing them with intelligence greater than that of humans, humans will still be able to contribute to scientific research, because there is no limit to what can be researched.

        What humans research, may take longer to bear fruits than what AI may research, yet it will be no less valid a job.

        The only way you could ‘replace’ humans, when it comes to scientific research, would be if there was only a finite amount of research to do, or if you can only do a finite amount of research at any given time – but instead, it’s (as far as we know) infinite.

        As a society, we might make a value-judgment that full-employment isn’t socially desirable, but that doesn’t change the fact that there will never be a lack of useful work to be done, and thus never a lack of jobs (outside of political reasons – which is the reason we have a lack of jobs now).

      4. Johann Sebastian Schminson

        Most utopian economic/social systems seem to discount the stupid demographic. There are people not fit to be scientists, writers, or story-tellers, or artists, or even farmers or laborers (because they F up everything they touch). Some people are only fit to be drug addicts and moochers. Some people are crazier than a shit-house mouse.

        The sooner we stop trying to force these folks to be productive (and not by punishing or starving them), the sooner we’ll be able to actually manage our more productive “human resources.”

  8. Bill

    Re: Antidote

    It’s cute, BUT I have dogs, and the first thought that passed through my mind seeing the photo is, Is some asshole now drugging animals just to post pretty online shots and more “hits” ?

    1. Katniss Everdeen

      I have dogs too. Old ones, who lost that “Awww, how CUTE” quality long ago.

      And the first thing that passed through MY mind was of the ELEVEN dogs, waiting in vain in shelters, who will not be adopted because they are not nearly as adorable as these.

      How many of these gorgeous puppies will suffer the same fate when they become just another old dog?

      1. nycTerrierist

        I beg to differ. Old dogs are sweet! my heart swells anytime I see
        an old buddy tottering along with a whitened muzzle.
        My dog got cuter and cuter as he got older — and he started out cute!
        (a rescue mutt, of course, not a designer pup)

        but I agree with you on this: rescue pets are the way to go.

      2. trish

        exactly what passed through my mind. same when I see kittens. when people let their cats have kittens and defend it saying they always find homes for them (other defenses: so the children can enjoy it and because it’s cruel not to let the cat have kittens), I remind them that those homes might have been homes for cats/kittens at the shelter. and when it comes to people that go to breeders for that perfect pure-bred dog…
        I have found abandoned kittens (even more cats) and I always make certain they’re neutered/spayed or will be before they’re adopted. never found pups, but a number of homeless dogs…
        Lots of kittens/pups born in trailer parks here and many go feral. Sliding fee spay clinic so it’s just ignorance in this case.
        heartbreaking, as this is just one small town.

  9. Ernesto Lyon

    If antibody response can be faked for one vaccine, it can be for any other.

    Vaccines are one of the biggest medical scams of our time.

    What about polio? The American polio epidemic spanned from the thirties to the mid-fifties. The height was 1952. The polio vax was released for mass consumption in 1956-1957. The times do not align. There are other explanations for the polio epidemic that make more sense, namely the rise of new and powerful pesticides that were used indiscriminately in that era.

    1. Katniss Everdeen

      The article really was quite remarkable, in a brain-dead, catatonic sort of way.

      “It’s an important case because it is extremely rare for scientists found to have committed fraud to be held accountable by the actual criminal justice system,” said Ivan Oransky, co-founder of Retraction Watch, which tracks research misconduct.

      What are the chances this was a “one-off?” Slim to none.

      (I also had visions of H-1B visas dancing in my head.)

      1. McMike

        Indeed, that’s the money quote, and unasked follow-up was: how many frauds are discovered but not prosecuted?

        And what does it say about a system that only frauds that are over-the-top get prosecuted, the rest slide by unpunished, unpublicized. Sound familiar?

        Bottom line: the vaccine system is not immune to the forces of crapification, vaccines are every bit as likely to get swept up in the corruption and greed and fraud.

        1. Jake Mudrosti

          “and unasked follow-up was: how many frauds are discovered but not prosecuted?”

          Serious answers are being sought. The efforts of John Ioannidis, briefly:

          Also mentioned that article: “A recent series of articles in the Lancet noted that, in 2010, about $200 billion (an astonishing 85% of the world’s spending on medical research) was squandered on studies that were flawed in their design, redundant, never published or poorly reported. ”

          “Why Most Published Research Findings Are False”, the 2005 paper.

          “And they learned that authors of the early studies that found no complications had been paid between $1 million and $23 million annually by the company for consulting, royalties and other compensation.”

          Excellent science is out there, everywhere, though it has to be sifted out of the crap.

          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            Not being fraudulent does not necessarily makes it excellent.

            For example, non-fraudulent work on GM foods is not quite excellent.

            Nor is non-fraudulent work on the best way to bring every citizen under full-awareness surveillance.

      2. MtnLife

        Chances are about as good as the misdeeds of the financial guys who are also rarely held accountable being a “one-off” event.

    2. MtnLife

      I am skeptical when they deem something “safe” beyond question when they’ve only tested it short term in a lab without regard to environmental factors such as the whole plethora of other vaccinations, known air/water pollutants, various additives/chemicals in our food (glyphosate in particular), and the whole range of industrial chemicals that we encounter daily in our consumer products but can’t know about because “trade secrets”. I’ll feel a lot better when I see the 25 year study on the combined effects. In addition, most of our health gains over the past century or two have been related to sanitation and nutrition. That being said, I’m not totally anti-shots. Tetanus, on one hand, is a reasonable precaution. Chicken pox vaccinations, on the other hand, are highly questionable. Once you’ve had it, yes, you are immune to chicken pox but the virus then lays dormant in your body and can transform into shingles under a stressed/weakened immune system. Are we just setting kids up to get shingles earlier? What about the character building that comes with dealing with the itchiness/pain of chicken pox? Are we setting kids up to be less resilient, less willpower? Last portion of the argument is when parents don’t want their kids around other kids who haven’t been vaccinated. Either your vaccinations work and there shouldn’t be an issue, or they don’t and there isn’t an issue. Either way, if you or your kid is sick, mingling in society is not the responsible course of action.

      1. McMike

        Tobacco is safe. Nuclear power is safe. Fracking is safe. DDT is safe. PCBs are safe. GMOs are safe. BPA is safe. 2,4-D is safe. Deep offshore drilling is safe…

        Vaccines are safe.

      2. Katniss Everdeen

        ” In addition, most of our health gains over the past century or two have been related to sanitation and nutrition.”

        Have you seen the one about how they want to turn off the water to 30,000 citizens in Detroit?

        I guess that’s because Purrell is so much cheaper, easier and technologically-superior to soap and water.

        How long before we see the headline, “Deadly, Dirty Doorknobs of Detroit?”

        1. MtnLife

          You comment about hand sanitizers makes me think that there has to be a neo-liberative free market solution just around the corner involving large subsidies to the personal sanitation industry.

          1. McMike

            We are on a collision course with a fascinating biological experiment

            – We are creating super-germs through antibiotic over/misuse and hospital acquired infections
            – We are assaulting our bodies (from the womb on) with massive doses of air/soil/food/water/surface pollution and toxic and disruptive/mimic chemicals, and our lungs with toxins and particulates, and chemical leaching and off-gassing in our food prep, bedding and furniture, car interiors, etc
            – We are heavily interfering with basic immune & neurological development processes and immunity and acquisition in newborns, children, and adults through vaccines and preemptive medicine
            – We are medicating ourselves with rivers of chemicals over a lifetime – including periodic scorched earth wipeouts via antibiotics and colon purges, and long term medication
            – We are subjecting our bodies to scorched earth sanitation practices (i.e. hand sanitizers, etc)
            – We are feeding ourselves on nutritionally sterile or even bio-toxic not-food – featuring intensively processed food, labratory created ingredients, and mono-crop chemical intensive phony food
            – We subject our bodies to a lifetime of stress and inactivity
            – We are subjecting ourselves to large doses of nuclear radiation including releases and medical tests
            – We are subjecting ourselves to large lifetime does of electronic radiation, massive magnetic fields, etc from electronic devices, microwave ovens, and radio and power transmission systems.
            – We subject ourselves to lifetime of sugar and saturated fat overdose and glucose/insulin roller coasters
            – We subject our bodies to long term stress and inflammation of obesity
            – We subject ourselves to the low level long term stresses of constant noise and light pollution
            – We subject ourselves to long term sleep deprivation and also chronic lack of rest/recovery times
            – We subject ourselves to increasing doses of artificial lighting

            Man, you couldn’t do this to a lab rat.

              1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

                We adapt by adjusting our norms.

                So, if a theory surrounds us long enough, by being repeated often, hopefully in the same way, by its various proponents, it becomes familiar in the same way one feels comforted seeing the same familiar fast food in all five continents.

            1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

              Thanks to ‘progress’ and ‘education,’ we know we can celebrate all those you listed above.

              (When I hear ‘progress,’ I rush back into the cave.)

            2. F. Beard

              One purpose of life is to force us to realize our vulnerability and thus our dependence.

              As for me, I’ll take Psalm 91 and let others fret themselves over things beyond their control.

            3. MtnLife

              Tuskegee was short on variables, not really big enough for a true sampling, and they had to do it on the sly. This way they just have to convince you that it is “prawgress” and you’ll happily pay to take part in the study. Not that you really have much of a choice anyways.

          2. Katniss Everdeen

            The water-FREE or water-LESS “personal sanitation industry.”

            Hell, many parts of the country are in a DROUGHT, and they need that water for FRACKING.

            1. MtnLife

              I was thinking from hand sanitizers to a full body moist towelette for showering, increased disposable eating utensils, increased beverage sales (no more freebie from the tap), as well as nearly limitless opportunities in the “sharing” economy: the Share a Shower app, Where Can I Crapp? app, Dirty Dishes Done Daily, and everybody’s favorite, the value priced Drink From My Garden Hose. Not only for fracking, this is also great as it increases the amount of water available to bottled water companies now that it isn’t being wasted on those “takers”. Neo-liberative capitalist wet dream!

  10. Luke Nolan

    U.N. endorses Iraq military force against advancing Islamist rebels

    “The United Nations on Wednesday issued an unusual call for military force, with a senior U.N. official saying the advance of Islamist militants throughout the north and east of Iraq must be dealt with militarily, though success will hinge on a broad political consensus.”


    UN demands end to Syrian military action in the Golan Heights

    “The UN Security Council is strongly condemning the recent intense fighting between the Syrian government and opposition forces in the Golan Heights and demanding an end to all military activity in the area that has separated Syrian and Israeli forces since 1974.”

    Syria is being moved back into the line of fire.

    Not sure what all this “cease-fire” business is about, though; Israel has attacked Syria several times since the start of the Syrian civil war [proxy war], including this weeks air strikes.


    Peres’ parting tip to Obama on Middle East: Stick with your friends, warts and all

    “Support Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, who is a “courageous partner in peace,” Peres said. Support newly-elected Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sissi who is “pro-American.” Support Jordan. Fight Hamas and Iran. Oh, and don’t try to save Iraq as a single political unit: It’s a lost cause, unless you or anyone else is willing to invest massive military forces, which you’re not. Support the independent and democratic de-facto state of the Kurds instead.”

    Alternate headline: Peres Gives Abbas the Kiss of Death

  11. McMike

    Re Google.

    Get this people: look past the hipsters, CEOs in Sketcher shoes, and foosball tables. Google is evil. Amazon and Facebook close seconds. Apple vying for third.

    Tried a Google search for an old friend yesterday. She’s an MD, so there’s literally at least a dozen pages of commercial click bait sites. As far as I can tell, outside those sites, she does not exist.

    I tried Googling my own business phone number, which is posted prominently on my professional web site. I got page after page of click bait reverse phone lookup sites. My own professional web site never came up.

    Went over to DDG and got it on the first page.

  12. F. Beard

    What I’ve been saying re ethical purchasing power creation and how a JG is bogus vs a BIG.

    Capitalism and technology have in large part solved the problem of supply. We need to solve the problem of demand. The first step is to realize we live in a post scarcity economy, that austerity is not the answer. The second stem is to recognize we need to divorce work from consumption. Otherwise, technological progress will impoverish us rather than enrich us and that would be tragic, ironic, and absurd. from [bold added]

    Read it and weep JG proponents; you’re part of the problem, not the solution.

    1. Calgacus

      Sigh. Just another article, same old, same old. Foolish people have been saying these things for centuries, and this sucker goes with the plutocrat’s preference, the (naked) BIG, that keeps the kleptocracy on top, not the JG which the plutocrats have never forgotten is their death.

      But in a monetary economy, why must people be prevented from doing valuable work for money when they want money? Why must their freedom be restricted? Why does their freedom not matter? Why must we lyingly insult people by calling them worthless pieces of shit in the way that matters: The BIG lie: “No money for you” – your labor is worth nothing. For the umpteenth time, I’ll help them (maybe I’ll be one of them) “rob” these Money Nazis.

      I am well aware that many who haven’t thought carefully about the plutocrat con game – like F Beard, Frances Coppola etc vaguely think that the BIG is pro-freedom compared to the JG. Beard: replied to you at greater length on the 6/24 thread, and am interested in your answer to my questions there.

      1. skippy

        If I might pile on Cal…

        Minsky explained why interest rate adjustments make booms worse, not better. At least adjustments in the short-term rate. I think there’s room, though, to adjust long-term rates without adjusting short-term rates.

        Pettifor–and MMT’s–view of private money creation absolutely does not rest on deposit insurance. That’s a straw man. No reason to have such a thing–govt could take over the payments function of banks, for instance, as Minsky/Kregel propose, and as many countries already do via, say, their national post offices.

        Full reserve banking and bank “shares” aren’t the same thing. The former in essence only gets rid of the need for deposit insurance. The latter is a much more significant change, but still doesn’t get rid of pvt money creation, no matter what you say.

        The overarching point–which I explained to you on Twitter months ago and you never had a response for and indeed never seemed to actually comprehend–is that there’s no such thing as getting rid of private money creation as long as you need to protect the payments system. And you MUST protect the payments system. That’s what central banks DO every minute, every hour, every day. Even if you nationalize deposits through a post office sort of thing, you still have to protect payment settlement across different types of accounts or risk having small disruptions to that settlement cause larger financial disruptions. That’s why inelastic systems like the gold standard don’t work. It’s why so-called debt free money–a bit more elastic in theory but necessarily endogenous in practice–can’t eliminate pvt money creation. When you, AMI, the positive money people, etc., show even the slightest bit of understanding of the payments system in your arguments for your position, then it will be time to debate and see if you’ve got something (which prehaps I’m wrong and you do, though you’ve still got Pettifor’s critique of centralized decisionmaking for money creation to deal with). Until then, MMT has no reason to engage with you or them.” — Scott Fullwiler

  13. Jim Haygood

    Electronic health records, comrades. Have you been purchasing contraband?

    ‘Carolinas HealthCare System operates the largest group of medical centers in North Carolina and South Carolina, with more than 900 care centers, including hospitals, nursing homes, doctors’ offices and surgical centers. The health system is placing its consumer data, which include purchases a patient has made using a credit card or store loyalty card, into predictive models that give a risk score to patients.’


    This sort of out-of-control snooping is an excellent reason not to use store loyalty cards. By also paying cash, you can monkey-wrench Big Data and screw a Big Bank out of transaction fee at the same time. Win-win!

    1. Katniss Everdeen

      Just don’t buy a pacemaker with either cash or credit. Or insurance, for that matter.

      See Wired link above: Hospital Networks are Leaking Data, Leaving Critical Devices Vulnerable

    2. Carolinian

      Loyalty cards are based on a phone number and therefore represent a household rather than an individual. So it’s a pretty vague sort of snooping for medical purposes. And banks do allow you to opt out of data sharing. I don’t know if this also applies to credit cards.

  14. F. Beard

    Progressives are stuck with the notion that to cure inequality, to restore demand, we should raise wages and reduce unemployment. These are worthy goals but as technology eliminates more jobs it becomes a Sisyphean task. If you are a regular reader of Pieria, you will not be surprised I suggest a basic income guarantee as the long-term solution. As technology reduces employment opportunities while increasing production, nothing else will allow us to maintain demand sufficient to meet supply. from

    Not to mention that JUSTICE REQUIRES that the population be compensated for the use of its stolen purchasing power via a government-backed credit cartel for the private (!) sector.

    Please get on the right side of history and justice, Progressives – if you can.

    1. MtnLife

      “nothing else will allow us to maintain demand sufficient to meet supply”
      It seems to me that we are addressing the wrong problems here. Why do we need to raise demand? Maybe we should reduce the supply, stop making so much crap that we don’t need (not like resources are infinite), and more efficiently use the resources we have (for example something like 40% of all food is wasted while people starve everywhere). Wouldn’t putting in place a system to increase demand not just grease the wheels towards even worse environmental plunder and degradation? Productivity is strongly tied to energy (fossil fuel) consumption. What justice is there in accelerating climate change? Further, how will a basic income guarantee remove the stranglehold of the oligarchs? Won’t a minor increase in consumer buying power only cement it by making the products they offer more reachable to the masses, thereby increasing their profits?

  15. Shnook in Chief

    Good on Bromwich, calling bullshit on US government efforts to obfuscate international law. Echolalic repetition of ‘norms’ to hint at the laws they break; naming NATO in the same breath with the UN, when the law subordinates NATO action to UN authority; associating the Bretton Woods institutions with the UN when they were built to end-run the UN.

    But Bromwich’s fixation on presidential character is a long-standing propaganda trick to disguise the institutional controls that make the president irrelevant. Obama has about as much say on policy as you do. The president’s character doesn’t matter.

    “Obama entered the presidency never having run anything.” Right. Those are ideal credentials for a puppet ruler. Of course he’s disengaged, he’s got less workplace discretion than the average telemarketer. People forget that Clinton let the warriors run amok too, he just waved his pom-poms with more spirit.

    “Obama launched the bombing of Libya in March 2011, having previously signalled that he intended no such action, in an emergency speech during a state visit to Brazil.” That’s not a diffident scatterbrain, that’s a flunky getting jerked around by his bosses. Like Bolton. Calling Bolton a neocon is dumb. Bolton is squarely in the tradition of Bricker, Vandenberg, and Helms. He cares about one thing only, and that’s impunity. Obama’s job is to sell impunity. If he fails, a lone nut comes and shoots him.

  16. Garrett Pace

    “Therefore, unless it’s an emergency, police need to get a warrant before they can search your cellphone.”

    Now all arrests will be emergencies.

  17. Jill

    Drone memo: Harold Koh answered the question about killin’ when he said President Obama had the RIGHT to kill anyone, anywhere-no exceptions. (Talk at U of Michigan Law School in 2010). The limiting factor would be the possibility of meaningful public outcry. Thus killing in Yemen would be O.K. but in Germany, it wouldn’t be seen as prudent. It would still be legal to kill in Germany but it would not be prudent.

    The memo clearly states that what Obama is doing could be considered murder under US criminal statutes. It could also be considered unconstitutional. The memo seem to spend a great deal of resources on explaining how to make certain the criminal law and Constitution could be held at bay to protect the president from facing the legal consequences of his actions.

    Further, it has been pointed out that the first attempt to kill Al-Awaliki happened before the memo was even written. So indeed, this is a completely lawless government.

    1. Bange

      Lawless indeed! We are now well pass the era of democracy at the very time when we have the technology to radically increase democracy. But in the US it is dead–as in all societies popular opinion matters as Machaivelli noted but not that much.

    2. James Levy

      This is exhausting, because the wrong cannot be righted. We see video almost every month that show cops, at the very least, committing acts of brutality, manslaughter, even murder, and nothing is done. Nothing is done because with the exception of perhaps 5% of the population, people want to be “safe” more than they want to see justice done. Even the most rabid 2nd Amendment purists want the cops to be able to act with impunity when they are dealing with the “underclass” (we know what that’s code for). They are not interested in inner city black kids being roughed up and harassed by the cops “standing their ground.”

      We live in a society where from top to bottom the stress is on benefits, not costs. The benefit of having the cops besieging poor and black communities is that it allows people to sleep easy at night. The benefit of having the president being empowered to kill “evildoers” is that the terrorists will be beaten down and kept from our shores. These are the excuses/justifications that are impossible to defeat with reason. Our national psyche is damaged and god only knows what can heal it. All I know is that the MSM and the government are working 24/7 to keep up the state of psychic distress so that they can exploit it for their own purposes.

  18. hpschd

    NLRB appointments canelled by SCOTUS today


    I just got this from Candice Miller-R, Mi-10

    Miller: Supreme Court’s Decision Confirms President’s Constitutional Overreach

    WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Representative Candice Miller (MI-10) issued the following
    statement after the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously ruled against the President’s
    overreach when making “recess appointments” while Congress is in session:

    “The separation of powers enshrined by our founders in the Constitution is vital to
    preserve our democratic republic. Today, the U.S. Supreme Court stood up for the
    Constitution and the rule of law by striking down the unconstitutional recess
    appointments to the National Labor Relations Board made by President Obama. The
    Court also invalidated decisions made by a board comprised by unconstitutional

    “This is further confirmation that the President has, in many instances, been
    operating well beyond the limits of the Constitution. This ruling is an important
    and overdue judicial check on overreach by this President and any future President.
    In the coming weeks, I intend to support further actions in the House to defend the
    Constitution, protect our cherished system of government based on the separation of
    powers, and make very clear that every American is equal under the law.”

  19. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    China…D.C. naming a street after a dissident.

    I fear there will be a Snowden Pagoda or a Manning Tea Garden in downtown Beijing, as they retaliate.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Even worse, they will rename the American Embassy street the Wounded Knee Superhighway.

  20. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    China soft landing bad news.

    I am not sure we should use that metaphor anymore.

    I mean, it depends on where the economic plane lands – in the south Indian Ocean?

    What if you had a soft economic landing, but the pilot and/or the passengers were all ‘incapacitated?’

    1. Jim Haygood

      And this:

      WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court on Thursday struck down a 35-foot protest-free zone outside abortion clinics in Massachusetts. The justices were unanimous in ruling that extending a buffer zone 35 feet from clinic entrances violates the First Amendment rights of protesters.–supreme_court-abortion_buffer_zone-049f017400.html


      How does this square with ‘protest pens’ located hundreds of yards from G20 gatherings and such? Next time, we can just march right up to the doors and give them a piece of our minds, right?

      Carrying that Supreme Court decision in your pocket probably would garner you some extra charges when the cops haul you away.

      1. Vatch

        Excellent point, Jim. I guess it’s okay if one’s free speech is used to terrorize a scared, unmarried, pregnant teenage girl. But free speech must never be used to irritate a head of state or central banker.

      2. Johann Sebastian Schminson

        Same as all of these jurisdictions that want guns to be allowed in every public space.

        Except in courthouses.

        And state capitols.

        And local government administration buildings.

        And the governor’s mansion.

        And police stations.

        And the MVA or DMV.

  21. Jess

    Stopping by at noon PT and only one comment? Is it just me and my aging tech equipment, or is something wrong. Can’t ever remember a links column with only one comment.

    1. Vatch

      Something’s wrong at your end or on the internet. I see 68 comments for today’s links.

  22. Marianne Jones

    Request for the visually challenged… I understand why the Daily Links post is no longer appearing in your RSS feed in full form. I am more than happy to click through to your website for this post.

    Could some consideration be given to font color selection? Orange on white is a horrible color combination for the visually challenged. The reason I stayed within the RSS feed article was that the font was normalized into Bolded blue for URL link & black for narrative and easier to read at all font sizes on all devices.

    1. hunkerdown

      What’s your browser? If Firefox, this one looks good… or, search your browser’s addon catalog for terms like black, white, contrast….

      1. Marianne Jones

        Depends on the device… I mostly use Dolphin on IOS, Firefox on Windows, and Safari on Mac. This is what I mean by “all font sizes on all devices.” The coloration scheme on IOS is especially horrible as clicking through from Digg’s RSS reader to NC brings up the desktop version and the scheme just barely readable. I’d prefer using the desktop version if not for the font color. The mobile version of NC doesn’t appear to include the comments on the post. I will try your FF add-on to see if helps. Thanks!

    2. Yves Smith Post author

      We went through an extensive redesign process. Readers rejected another color scheme and wanted the NC orange and grey. We had four rounds of reader input on the color and other issues.

      I’m sorry but we cannot please every reader. You can adjust colors in your browser and in your computer’s preferences.

  23. Oregoncharles

    About the “tornado alley” article: they failed to mention another significant range of hills, in Brown County in southern Indiana. They are where the glaciers stopped, limestone and gravel hills, pretty but not very impressive.
    Because of them, the town where I grew up, just to the northeast, has never had a recorded tornado. so the article has a point: it doesn’t take a whole lot.

  24. Jess

    Definitely my end. Of course, I’m saddled with Slime Warner Cable ISP service, so that probably says all we need to know.

  25. Tom Bradford

    From the Pieria article: ‘The Central Paradox of the 21st Century’

    ” The rich got richer during the post war golden age (1945-1973) but so did everybody else.”

    When I began my working life in the UK, in 1970 with the Inland Revenue, the top rate of income tax was 83% with a 15% Capital Gains Tax on unearned income on top of that. So while the rich might indeed have got richer it was very slowly while the poor were made incomparably richer via free comprehensive health care, free education to degree level plus cost of living grants (grants, not loans), cheap, high-quality social housing, State broadcasting which regarded its obligation to entertain and inform at least on par with entertainment, and a general belief in the future which was worth working towards.

    Alas, Golden Ages go the way of all gold – into the pockets of the sociopathic selfish.

  26. run75441

    7th District Justice Richard Posner’s opinion of SCOTUS Chief Justice Roberts is a worthy read. I have not see n a lower court judge come out like this.

  27. flora

    re: The Revolution Has Begun. About the NRA. Thanks for that. I remember this bit:
    “Soon, NRA fundraising letters signed by LaPierre were in full-throated Armageddon mode. An assault-weapons ban passed in the early 1990s “gives jack-booted government thugs more power to take away our Constitutional rights, break in our back doors, seize our guns, destroy our property and even injure and kill us.””
    I remember that most of the WWII vets I knew dropped their long standing NRA memberships over that. They knew from “jack-booted government…” Equating the US Govt with Nazi Germany over common sense gun laws was beyond the pale for these Veterans.
    Also, thanks for Richard Posner’s Slate article. Spot on.

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