Links 7/26/14

Impala Live (Chuck L). An official lookout camera.

Wildlife loss link to child slavery BBC

Kudzu That Ate U.S. South Heads North as Climate Changes Bloomberg

Urban Jungle a Tough Challenge for Google’s Autonomous Cars MIT Technology Review. Thank God. But I can see autonomous vehicles being used for deliveries from manufacturers to warehouses outside urban areas.

Wikipedia blocks ‘disruptive’ page edits from US Congress BBC (furzy mouse)

Chinese government defers another default but only for the time being South China Morning Post

Thailand’s Military Government Thinks John Oliver Is a Threat to Its Monarchy VICE (Lambert)

The current ECB programs create a QE-like environment, setting up for moral hazards Walter Kurtz

Public furious at competent bankers Daily Mash

Brazil injects $20bn into banking sector Financial Times

Central American leaders criticise US border policy Guardian

Judge Griesa Makes History Altering US Governance Counterpunch

You Say Poignant, I Say Depressing Mark Weidemaier, Credit Slips. Key sentence: “What has been clear all along, but is now being acknowledged openly, is just how much the rulings in this case have been motivated by pique that Argentina refused to pay money judgments issued by US courts.”


Gaza: 12-hour ceasefire begins Guardian

It Turns Out Hamas Didn’t Kidnap and Kill the 3 Israeli Teens After All New York Magazine

Israel Losing Support from Its Biggest Ally: American Evangelical Christians George Washington

We should begin preparing now for the evacuation of Israel Fabius Maximus. This takes the “Israel is beleagured” position, but even so, contends Israel will inevitably lose.

Truth is fiercely contested in Gaza war Financial Times


A chessboard drenched in blood Pepe Escobar, Asia Times

NBC Ukraine Hot War story is false Zap Radon

Washington Is Escalating the Orchestrated Ukrainian “Crisis” to War Paul Craig Roberts (OIFVet). Well, sure trying to.

Russian newspaper Novaya Gazeta prints front-page apology for MH17 disaster in Dutch News (Australia, furzy mouse). Consistent with other reports of jockeying among the elites v. Putin. Someone like Mark Ames would be much better able to discern how much of this is real v. the West playing up the degree of pushback.

Catastrophic Desertions and Losses in the Ukrainian Army – Official Ukrainian Reports, July 19, 2014 Vineyard of the Saker (Chuck L)

SBU Cleans Website of Bogus “Proof”; Mystery of 312 Grows Michael Shedlock (furzy mouse)

Brussels chiefs urge EU states to approve tough curbs on Russia Financial Times

Sanctions and IMF Put Russian Econ in the Dock Boston Globe

This map shows Europe’s dependence on Russian gas Vox

Is the Ukraine “Crisis” a US Crony Oil Play?; Further Discussion of S.2277 (“to prevent further Russian aggression, etc.”) Economic Policy Journal

Russia Raises the Policy Rate Menzie Chinn, Econbrowser


ISIS Destroys Jonah’s Tomb In Mosul, Iraq, As Militant Violence Continues Huffington Post (furzy mouse)

Isis ‘may be on UN war crimes list’ BBC

The ISIS Crackdown on Women, by Women Atlantic (Swedish Lex)

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

Nest Hackers Will Offer Tool To Keep The Google-Owned Company From Getting Users’ Data Forbes

FBI Refuses to Release Drone Privacy Assessment MuckRock

Trust No One Malcolm Gladwell, New Yorker

Obama Running Out of Time to Fill Vacant Fed Board Seats Bloomberg

Robert Rubin: How ignoring climate change could sink the U.S. economy Washington Post. The official dog whistle that the neoliberals have decided Something Needs to Be Done. Which probably means they’ve figured out a way to keep their position secure while making some changes.

Why Obama’s ‘economic patriotism’ is bunk CNBC

Gawker no longer even trying to pretend it’s not grotesquely hypocritical on tax Pando

Congressman Mistakes Two Senior US Gov’t Officials For Foreign Indian Gov’t Officials Techdirt (Chuck L)

Left Coast Rising Paul Krugman

Chris Christie, In Colorado, Slams Legalized Marijuana — Unlike Rand Paul, His 2016 GOP Rival David Sirota, International Business Times

Abbey’s ghost explains why we’re in Arizona – in summer Arizona Central (David P)

Federal Reserve’s Rate Debate Looks Set to Heat Up WSJ Economy

Citi Wasn’t So Clear on What ‘Hidden Orders’ Meant Matt Levine, Bloomberg

Former Bear Stearns chairman Greenberg dead at 86 Reuters. Ace required all Bear partners to give 5% of their income to charity.

Alan C. Greenberg, 86, Dies; Led Bear Stearns in Good Times and Bad New York Times

Class Warfare

Obama Campaign Vets: Pay Us $5,000 To Learn — And Work On A Campaign BuzzFeed. ZOMG, as Lambert would say. Now you have to pay to work for free. And this scheme was created by Team Dem.

The Onshoring Myth? Project Syndicate (David L)

Rewriting History on Doctor Shortages: Protectionists Bury the Bodies Dean Baker (Carolinian). One of Baker’s pet peeves has been protectionism (as in what amount to cartel strategies) in various professions.

Why “Can’t Make Ends Meet” Trumps “Poverty” Bill Moyers. Wow, I can’t quite wrap my mind around this. Poor people don’t want to think of themselves as poor because “poor” is pejorative. But “fat” is pejorative too and a formerly fat person, I didn’t try thinking of myself as not being fat. The reason this bothers me is that it strikes me as a not healthy coping strategy, and I don’t necessarily mean personally, but politically. If you deny being in the group you are in, you won’t align yourself with fellow members to demand better treatment. One might even go Machiavellian and contend that the denigration of the poor has proven useful in inhibiting them about organizing.

Cheer – Inequality is Falling Globally!! (and similar nonsense) Pieria

Antidote du jour:

links sleeping baby bears

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. Jim Haygood

    Excerpts from La Nación’s daily ‘pelea con los holdouts’ article:

    [Special master] Pollack met yesterday for a second consecutive day with the committee of Argentine officials who traveled to New York to see him. The vulture funds did not attend; they spoke to Pollack by telephone and said they are willing to continue negotiations “at any time”. True to the secrecy that has guided the process, lawyers and officials entered and left the building at 245 Park Avenue without answering questions from the journalists who waited at the door.

    The mediator said he had a “brief follow-up meeting” with the Argentina delegation. The impasse is not broken, but Pollack also said there will be “more communications with the parties before the date of default.” It was the only mention made ​​of a possible default.

    There was no mention of a new meeting. The Argentines returned to Buenos Aires last night “to confer and seek new instructions from their government,” said the mediator, a phrase that renewed speculation surrounding the struggle, given the truism that technological advances allow conferring and receiving further instructions at a distance.

    “On July 30th we will not have any problem,” was the phrase offered in Buenos Aires by Minister of the Economy, Axel Kicillof, after renewing his criticism of Griesa’s orders, which he described as “unprecedented, unusual and incomprehensible.”

    NML, who had yesterday issued the most hardball statement of all, this time surprised observers with their silence. Spokesmen for Wall Street tycoon, Paul Singer, did not respond to requests for information from La Nación. Aurelius, which doesn;t usually comment after meetings with Pollack, said nothing.

    The silence of the litigants was not the only variation at the end of the week. The first meeting with Pollack, whch Kicillof attended, took four hours. The second, which involved the same committee that met yesterday with the negotiator, five hours. The third, three hours. Yesterday was the shortest: just 70 minutes from the time the committee entered and exited the building.

    1. Michael Hudson

      Pollack gets over $12,000 a day, so his fee for “mediating” will be $250,000 during the process.
      Worth mentioning …

    2. Alejandro

      For anyone interested in context, beyond the default(no pun) distraction of courtroom drama. Here’s a prequel to “Inside Job” and a sequel to the military dictatorship. Roughly 2 hrs. In Spanish with English sub-titles, the audio-visuals help to make it understandable. (Thanks to Don Quijones for posting and NC for the platform)

    3. Fíréan

      Miko Peled, ‘an honest Israeli Jew’ and son of a famous Isreali army general, ‘tells the Real Truth about Israel’ in this presentation recorded and available at the youtube link given here.
      The man lost a thirteen year old niece in a suicide bombing incident and decided to do his own research on the whole situation and the history, with the added insight he had from his father’s prior position and experience within the military . He dispells many myths and so called given facts.
      Recommended viewing the whole speach.
      Does a country have the right to defend themselves when they are the antagonist and oppressor ?

  2. financial matters

    Citi Wasn’t So Clear on What ‘Hidden Orders’ Meant Matt Levine, Bloomberg

    “”So this case looks a lot like: Citi took information from high-frequency traders and used it to improve the outcomes of regular customers. (Probably without worsening the outcomes of those high-frequency traders.) Obviously Citi wasn’t supposed to do that. But if you’re looking for the post-“Flash Boys” enforcement action that shows up the evils of high frequency traders and the brokers who cater to them, this isn’t it.””

    It may not be that but it sure shows that the stock market is a casino and not a good vehicle for long term investment. I’d choose the high value platinum coin.

  3. YY

    In his most recent endorsement of the right of Israel to defend itself against rockets, Obama effectively helped create the environment in which 600 additional Palestinian civilians were slaughtered. There is a basic problem with the right to self defense trope in any case. When Iron dome works (as well as advertized), air raid sirens are prompt, the shelters are robust enough, and the rockets are poor weapons of destruction, Israel has already successfully defended itself against these attacks, at least in terms of their lethal effects. To suggest that the rocket represent existential threat to Israel as the Israeli government often suggests is not a realistic assessment of the threat that they represent.

    To then retaliate in retribution and punishment is beyond disproportional but is in fact an act of wanton sadistic violence. Is there justification to kill those who inconvenience your lives, especially in context that those who are punished are inconvenienced around the clock, every day, year on end, by the siege. How this automatic response of right of self defense is not challenged on its own lack of merit is a measure of how we are accustomed to seeing the situation. This argument is unreasonable and should not be invoked on behalf of Israel as it prejudices subsequent area of discourse.

    1. Banger

      The Israeli “self-defense” idea certainly, does not make sense. What does make sense is cultivating peaceful co-existence with your neighbors which, since Rabin was assassinated, has not been Israeli policy. The right-wing has adopted a policy which the U.S. officially adopted after 9/11 that the domination of the State by right-wing elements can only succeed long-term under a neo-Orwellian system of constant conflict. You keep stirring the nest, there is a reaction, then you react and this can go on forever thus the right-wing domination of both the U.S. and Israeli governments.

      1. fresno dan

        What is interesting, or bizarre, to me is the evolution of support on the far right for Israel. I can remember when anti Semitism was a prominent feature of the far right. It is funny how things can turn 180 degrees……
        Now, the far right is the most fervent supporter of Israel. Undoubtedly, evangelical apocalyptic beliefs fuel ?some/much? of this.
        Indeed, in some of the more extreme right wing sights, I have actually seen comments advocating the Israeli’s wipe out Palestine, AND the same commenter has raging hatred for Jews (apparently, unaware that practically all Israelis are Jews)…
        And, of course the problem with labels and generalizations is that any group of 10 humans will have 32 opinions….

        1. Banger

          Part of the pro-Israel stance exists for the usual apocalyptic reasons, part of it is that the far-right in the U.S., in order to achieve its world-domination fantasies, needs the support of Israeli intelligence which is intricately intertwined with the National Security State.

        2. hunkerdown

          That’s the “wonderful” thing about any ethos, religious or otherwise: humans can use it to lead other humans by the nose.

        3. Carla

          As far as I have been able to discern, the fundamentalist Christian embrace of Israel and Zionism consists of something like “Why not let them kill our enemies? They are saving Israel for for the Second Coming which is for US. When the rapture comes, anyone who has not been born again as a Christian is done for anyway.” In other words, it is delightful to these “Christians” that Jews will fight their wars for them, eliminate the infidels, and then be damned for eternity along with said infidels.

          Perhaps I am entirely wrong about this and if so, I imagine someone here will set me straight.

      2. susan the other

        Today’s link to Fabius Maximus was totally unexpected. Reposting a marine veteran, Franz Gayl on the evacuation of Israelis to the USA. Repatriate the Israelis because unless they give up Zionism, they will be destroyed. By attrition if nothing else. This opinion was first written in 2012. It makes good sense and the US, as the great patron of Israel, needs to prepare for the evacuation. One of the suggestions was to set up a state within the USA on federal land in southern Utah. Like Israel – a desert, a river (albeit an almost dry one) and in a place already nick-named Zion. I think it is a reasonable plan – to be ready to evacuate the Israelis if they cannot tone down their current Zionism and are overwhelmed by their enemies. Just yesterday Iran said Israel should be eliminated “as a zionist state” but the Jews should not be eliminated. Interesting position. Anyway, it’s mindboggling that the blogs are talking about the logistics of evacuating Israel. Seriously. It could be a very good move for a number of reasons.

    2. Jim Haygood

      Congressional Research Service report:

      Israel is the largest cumulative recipient of U.S. foreign assistance since World War II. To date, the United States has provided Israel $121 billion (current, or non-inflation-adjusted, dollars) in bilateral assistance.

      In 2007, the Bush Administration and the Israeli government agreed to a 10-year, $30 billion military aid package for the period from FY2009 to FY2018. During his March 2013 visit to Israel, President Obama pledged that the United States would continue to provide Israel with multi-year commitments of military aid subject to the approval of Congress.

      The FY2014 Consolidated Appropriations Act (P.L. 113-76) provides the President’s full $3.1 billion request in FMF for Israel. In addition, it provides another $504 million in funding for research, development, and production of Israel’s Iron Dome anti-rocket system ($235 million) and of the joint U.S.-Israel missile defense systems David’s Sling ($149.7 million), the Arrow improvement program (or Arrow II, $44.3 million), and Arrow III ($74.7 million).


      Why the U.S. provides nearly $500 per capita in annual aid to a fellow rich OECD country is a question that needs to be posed over and over.

      Money for dope, money for rope, as ol’ John Lennon used to say. Just gimme some troof …

      1. YY

        The USA pays for the war machine (in effect financing iron dome and iron fist and whatever), the UN (rest of the world and US) pays the subsistence of the residents, and the residents as inmates get to rebuild their own cells in the prison after the periodic destruction by the jailors. This can go on for like, forever.

        1. Jim Haygood

          All true. But as indicated in a Bloomberg trial balloon yesterday, since some concrete was diverted for constructing tunnels, Israeli is preparing the ground to deny importation of building supplies (as it’s been doing for years).

          So I go down the streets
          Down to my good friend’s house
          I said “Look man, I’m outdoors you know
          Can I stay wit’ you maybe a couple of days?

          He said, Uh, let me go and ask my wife
          He come out of the house
          I could see it in his face
          I knowed it was no

          He said, I don’t know man, ah she kinda funny, you know
          I said, I KNOW. Everybody funny. Now you funny too.

          — Rudy Toombs, One Bourbon, One Scotch, One Beer

          1. Johann Sebastian Schminson

            “Everybody funny. Now you funny too.”

            One of the best lines in rock n’ roll. Then, there’s this part:

            “I seen you today you was standin’ on a corner,
            Leaning up against a post”
            I said “But I’m tired, I’ve been walkin’ all day”
            She said “That don’t confront me . . .

      2. Doug Terpstra

        The per capita equivalent for the US population is $6 trillion. Hence people refer to Israel as a welfare queen dependent of the US. But ISTM, the inverse is true: the US has become a vassal state of Israel, its political and economic system now wholly captured. The preponderance of Israel-first Neocons in the Obama regime and the consistently unanimous or nearly unanimous votes in the US Knesset on AIPAC policy present us with overwhelming evidence of this, particularly now, with the confluence of ME conflicts and the otherwise incomprehensible drive to war with Russia, the remaining deterrent (along with China) to Eretz Israel and total global hegemony.

      3. optimader

        Without quibbling w/ that conservatively assessed value by the fas as my point will be made the equivalency is $23,804, that is an extraordinary amount considering it is not corrected for present net value. This direct theft from the taxpayer is on its face bad investment.
        Even more darkly, as US Taxpayer mandatory “aid” is progressively reflecting an increasing % in the form of weapons/military infrastructure. This allows the USG the MIC to manipulate true unit cost accounting for the weapon system life cycle by shifting program costs to “aid”.

      4. sd

        Each year, Israel receives the equivalent of 20 years of funding for the arts in America. Each and every year.

  4. OIFVet

    Food engineering gone mad: Walmart’s Ice Cream Sandwiches Don’t Melt In The Sun. “The discovery was made by a local mom, Christie Watson, who noticed that a Great Value ice cream sandwich her son left out on their patio table hadn’t fully melted — even though it had been sitting out for 12 hours on an 80-degree day. Watson left a second ice cream sandwich out overnight with the same results, WCPO reports.

    “What am I feeding to my children?” she asked, appalled.”

    Also notice how Wal-Mart tried to claim that it was the quality of the ingredients, namely cream, that makes their ice cream sandwich so resistant to melting, and the subsequent debunking of this claim. Big Food is running experiments on the population, and getting it to pay the costs of the experiment in the process.

    1. mad as hell.

      I was in Wal Mart yesterday getting some cheap Chinese essentials. I had Wal Marts ice creme sandwiches in my cart (impulse buying) and was at the checkout when my son said to me, “Dad those are gonna melt in the car while we are waiting for ma”
      “You are right, let’s get em back to the freezer”
      Now I see I could have just left them at the check out counter.

      1. Kim Kaufman

        Or left them in the car. On the dashboard. They haven’t called “shakes” at McDonald’s “milk shakes” in decades because they’re made out of potatoes or something.

      1. Ken Nari

        Well, if Patryn World and the Daily Mail say so…still, the color of the bun seems unnaturally (enhanced for TV?) vivid. Nah.. They wouldn’t do that.

        On the bright side, trekkers on a budget might think about bypassing REI freeze-dried ($$$$) and instead mummify some Big Macs for the trail. (Just pitch the buns.)

        I’m guessing the only additive in McDonalds meat these days is salt and that salt and the dry climate of Utah could preserve even super-up-scale filet-mignons from Hole Foods.

        Humans have been living on meat and fish dried and preserved with salt for thousands. maybe tens of thousands, of years.

    2. optimader

      Avoid food that has a bar code.
      Don’t put anything in your mouth that you bought from walmart that isnt stainless steel.

    3. Katniss Everdeen

      “What am I feeding to my children?” she asked, appalled.”

      “Why don’t YOU know?” I ask, appalled. “They’re YOUR children.”

      1. abynormal

        yeah, the mom coulda enlightened the situation with a hands on experiment…
        “Great Value ice cream sandwiches contain the firming agent Calcium Sulfate. Guar Gum and Carob Bean Gum is used in the sandwiches as a thickening agent. Carrageenan is also a thickening agent and a stabilizer. In addition, the Great Value ice cream sandwiches from Walmart contain the controversial hydrogenated oils monoglycerides and diglycerides which show up on labels as, “Mono-And Diglycerides.” These act as emulsifiers that prevent the “ice cream” from separating and provide the dairy product with consistency.

        In the U.S., there is currently no ADI[4][5]/ set for carrageenan, although the Joint FAO/WHO Expert Committee on Food Additives (JECFA) stated in 2007 that it’s “inadvisable to use carrageenan or processed eucheuma seaweed in infant formulas”.

        In the E.U., the ADI as of 2003 is 0 – 75 mg/kg body weight, with a note that that intakes are considerably below the ADI for most people[6]. They base this recommendation on a JECFA review in 2002 that counters the 2001 paper’s conclusions above, stating the following:

        “The classical initiation-promotion study in rat colon with carrageenan intakes ranging up to 3230 mg/kg bw/day did not show any effect of carrageenan on tumour formation. In the two less well-designed rat studies that did show tumour promotion at high doses, the intakes of carrageenan in the rats were higher than human intakes by 2-3 orders of magnitude or more.”

        more please

        1. Johann Sebastian Schminson

          Is this proof that most folks don’t give a rat’s ass what they eat?

          1. abynormal

            id ask…why are consumers, with obvious disposable income, consuming walmart ice cream?…are they that uninformed of their true economic position(s). walmarts a strong weather vane for economic climate deniers? many of my neighbors, eating ultra processed food at Dollar Tree stores, find Ice Cream a Luxury.

            1. toldjaso

              Apartheid grocering has been in place for awhile. Even Whole Foods has stores for “rich” and “poor” locations. Think about it long and hard. Call it *Eugenics Perfected* via Club of Rome/Agenda 21 “Grocery Governance”. Anything to do with “fertility” management?

              The “class wars” are bogus. It’s stark: 1%DNA v. 99%DNA.
              Revisit “ADAM’S CURSE” by Bryan Sykes.

              1. abynormal

                funnee. ‘Apartheid grocering’…you do make my grey matter jiggle…
                “I will leave you to imagine a world without men, but there is one immediate benefit from their extinction. Adam’s curse is permanently lifted. Sexual selection disappears, for the simplest of reasons – there are no longer two sexes. Sperm no longer fights sperm for access to eggs. There are no sperm to do battle, no Y-chromosomes to enslave the feminine. The destructive spiral of greed and ambition fueled by sexual selection diminishes and, as a direct result, the sickness of our planet eases. The world no longer reverberates to the sound of men’s clashing antlers and the grim repercussions of private and public warfare.”

              2. OIFVet

                Well that explains why Whole Foods will open a location in Chicago’s Englewood neighborhood. It is a neighborhood that features two or three of the poorest zip codes in the US and is wracked by violence. Emanuel has been bragging left and right about that store, claiming that it shoes that A) he is such a great mayor, and B) that Englewood is getting better. He is not and it ain’t.

                1. toldjaso

                  Groceries “go South” when the sell-by date is almost up or has expired, including produce. So clever! Such a cunning way to shuffle stock.

                  1. hunkerdown

                    Hunh! I haven’t been into that shiny new Meijer superstore on the Detroit side of Eight Mile Road, but now you’ve got me wanting to do a little recon. I can’t see how they’d crapify it all that much, though, what with hip and gentrifying Ferndale on the other side of the road.

            2. optimader

              as well any engineered food product w/ the branding “Great Value” surely isn’t.

              1. hunkerdown

                Indeed! Good wholesome products sell themselves. The more said about them, the more reason to suspect they are otherwise.

        2. Katniss Everdeen

          I wish I could believe that, if this “appalled” mom would have somehow stumbled on this information, it would have made a difference. I just can’t.

          I think it’s far more likely that “unmeltable ice cream” would be be viewed as a “technological innovation” that is more convenient and less time-consuming for busy soccer moms juggling the overwhelming demands of career and family. Plus it’s less likely to mess up the leather in the new SUV.

          It’s just a short hop to “unmeltable ice cream,” a must-have for worry-free summer fun.

            1. optimader

              ‘ice cream in a bag’

              More like ‘Mom’s in the bag” so she can face another deep submersion Walmart shopping dive w/ the fructose junkie feral child needing a bit more calibration after the fried dough glop coated in powdered sugar.

          1. abynormal

            are you speaking of the moms that open their wallet more often than a book and rely on the dotted line of an unread contract be highlighted?

                1. toldjaso

                  Actually, “ice cream” as “treat” is the KissOfDeath, dispensed also as a “treat” in nursing homes. Think about it.

        3. Paul Niemi

          Perhaps you can answer this, aby: the last time I bought Hershey’s Special Dark chocolate bars, the sections wouldn’t melt in my mouth, and they were chewy. I noticed the difference immediately. You could actually bend the chocolate quite far at room temperature and it wouldn’t break. I wondered if they had started adding a lot of paraffin wax? Also, I had heard of some dairies adding paraffin wax to ice cream back in the 1960s, but I thought regulations had prohibited that.

          1. abynormal

            well Paul i hadn’t had a hershey’s in so long i wouldn’t know. paraffin is seriously nasty. many of these additives act like a laxative…flush water into the intestines. id be real careful with the exlax clones’)
            ideas for replacing nasty paraffin…
            “Wax is not food. Yes, all right, your mother and many other well-intentioned people may have melted paraffin into chocolate to make it easier to coat things like frozen bananas. Some recipes even call for it. But that doesn’t make it right.
            And, yes, the US Food and Drug Administration has approved “food-grade” paraffin, even though it is a derivative of the production of crude oil. Mostly it is used to coat fruits and cheeses. While food-grade paraffin is technically edible, it is not digestible; it passes through the body without being absorbed. Beyond that, after hours of searching, we have not been able to turn up any sources of food-grade paraffin. Do not assume the paraffin for sale (for canning purposes) in your supermarket is food-grade; it is not.

            1. Paul Niemi

              Thanks for that. I have also learned to beware of frozen hamburger patties, unless the label says 100 percent beef. The others are often sold for the same price, but they are so full of soy they won’t even brown on the grill.

                1. Paul Niemi

                  100% Ground Beef, meaning muscle trimmings. That excludes a lot, including hooves, horns, hides, brains, udders, etc. What about pink slime? I don’t know. I think the main point is getting what you pay for, not walking home defrauded by a product full of sneaky, cheap fillers. That’s the stuff the newly hired pipsqueak MBA in the Jimmy Dean Pure Pork Sausage ads wanted to use to cut costs and increase profits.

            1. toldjaso

              Time to recall that wildlife of the sea consume plastic-for-plankton? “Atomizing” killer substances — like the COREXITing of crude oil in the Gulf by BP in criminal acts of *destruction of evidence* — is poisoning the food chain from top to bottom.

    4. griffen

      Way back when I worked for a small dairy co at a delivery sales branch, in Eastern NC. That ice cream definitely would have melted, but this is ancient news from 1994. Just sitting on a patio for 30 minutes it’ll run.

      That is just unusual (understatement) to not melt.

    5. trish

      “Big Food is running experiments on the population, and getting it to pay the costs of the experiment in the process.”

      Big McFood, agribusiness, factory farms have been/are running these profit-driven experiments at the huge expense of the public and environment, and corporate medicine and big pharma have been/are/will be gleefully cashing in on the health repercussions. It’s been sad to watch this go global, an infection out of control with such misery in its wake.

      1. Banger

        It’s astonishing–we live in a science-fiction nightmare authors from five decades or more ago warned us about. Life is still, in so many ways, sweet and we need to appreciate what we have and focus on that–not to escape but to enhance that energy and expand it.

        1. toldjaso

          We should know by now that “science fiction” has been predictive programming all along.

          1. jrs

            or designed back then to acclimate us to the future present. Too far? Probably. It would be irresponsible not to speculate …

      2. toldjaso

        “go global” — With “help” from CIA+IMF “Hitmen” after the “Shock Doctrine” has been executed (CocaCola, Pepsi, McDonalds, BurgerKing, etc. from the Marshall Plan’s “Germany” through China through Everywhere today, “to preserve the American Way of Life”. CC salesmen do NOT drink their product except under duress. How many health-conscious Americans gave up this KillerAmericanWayOfLife long ago? Ned Beatty’s character in “NETWORK” made it clear as silver crystal: the world is a Meta “Corporation” (of Chosen Monopolies called “Company” and/or “Corporation”).

        If your name is in AllCaps on your Social Security card, you are slave, a commodity “owned” by a Player in The Great Game.

    6. John Smith

      I’m tired of people like you spouting their mouth off at things they have no adequately looked into. Just shut up and do some basic research before you start screaming about the dihydrogen monoxide in your water.

      It doesn’t melt in the sun because it contains hydrocolloids and emulsifiers that stabilize the structure and consistency of the cream. Let’s be clear here, you’re literally complaining about Wal-mart adding extra fiber to their food! Cellulose Gel, Cellulose Gum, Carob Bean Gum, and Guar Gum are all soluble fibers. You’ll find them in laxatives like Metamucil, water based sexual lubricates like KY-Jelly, and GLUTEN FREE FLOUR!

      As a food nerd behavior like this disgusts me. This is why we can’t have nice things…

      1. OIFVet

        Feel free to indulge in your food nerdiness by putting whatever you want in your body. Nobody is stopping you. All I know is that there is an epidemic of food-related diseases such as obesity and Type 2 diabetes. So excuse me if I prefer to stick to simple, natural foods. It is amazing, listening to you, that humanity managed to survive for a few millennia without the wonders of modern chemistry.

        1. abynormal

          “This is why we can’t have nice things…”
          meThinks we’re being wal-trolled…kinda leaves a fuzzy feelin on my tongue.

          “Life asks not merely what you can do; it asks how much can you endure and not be spoiled.” Fosdick

          1. OIFVet

            I get that impression too. Funny that the spokeswoman for Wal-Mart didn’t go into explanation of food chemistry but rather gave the lie about the high cream content. Its like Wal-Mart had something to hide and/or doesn’t trust people to make the “right” decisions based on full disclosure. “We know what’s best for you and we will lie to you if we have to in order to give it to you.” Great Value brand as the choice of food nerds, who woulda thunk it… Hey John, do different food additives have their own terroir based on factory of origin?

            1. John Smith

              I don’t work for Wal-Mart. I’m a health conscious vegan who isn’t afraid of reading scientific literature. Not everything is a goddamned conspiracy. I’ll give you my skype or facebook if you want to chat about this elsewhere.

              1. OIFVet

                Fine, but I am still curious about the terroir different food processors impart in their products. Just asking for some pointers as a food nerd wanna-be.

        2. John Smith

          And you’re more than fine to stick to whole foods as well. But you’re doing no one a favor when you engage in scare mongering without any of the appropriate facts. Also, it’s not a very good idea to invoke obesity and Type 2 diabetes in this case. We lack the enzymes to break down the principal materials that cause the ice-cream not to melt. Not only that but they increase insulin tolerance by reducing the rate at which absorb actual sugar. Not not only that they act as a sink for cholesterol that’s released by the liver. Not not not only that they act as probiotics by selectively feeding gut flora that produce further beneficial metabolic effects.

          I could go on and on about this but I’ll save your time. Whole foods have their place, but “chemicals” have their place as well. Unless you want to die of dysentery like so many of our ancestors did…

          1. OIFVet

            When one writes fiction meant to be passes as truth, it helps to at least know some basic facts. Like what “probiotic” means, for example. Or the role of basic personal hygiene and proper food handling in preventing dysentery…

            1. John Smith

              So I should have used prebiotic. My apologies for using the wrong prefix…
              But that doesn’t address the substance of what.

              1. OIFVet

                Sometimes partial knowledge is more dangerous than complete lack of knowledge… Quick, someone tell diabetics and high cholesterol sufferers to drop their expensive prescriptions and run to Walmart for the miracle Great Value ice cream.

                1. John Smith

                  That’s about the clearest portrait of a straw man I’ve ever seen here… But there is a germ of truth in your dung pile. Most of those afflicted with high cholesterol and type II diabetes can greatly reduce or abandon their reliance on expensive medication with the proper dietary intervention. But probably not with Great Value ice cream…

                  1. OIFVet

                    Perhaps subtlety goes over your head. It wasn’t me who was touting the health benefits of its chemical ingredients, you did. In case you haven’t noticed, obesity and Type 2 are strongly correlated with poverty, and poor people are Walmart’s target demographic. Your frothy defense of a crappy ice cream and associating it with food nerdiness and health benefits is a perfect illustration of the danger of half-truths and poorly digested knowledge. It doesn’t matter one bit that some of its ingredients are prebiotic if the rest are bad for the organism. Carrageenan use for example is banned in the EU from being used in baby formulas. And high fructose corn syrup needs no introduction. The mono and diglycerides would rather do without.

                    You are likely one of those who thinks that using science to “improve” on nature is the sign of progress. I say the evidence of the opposite is overwhelming. I don’t care for the mad food scientists trying to reinvent the wheel, they do that not in the name of mankind but in the name of corporate profits. And those have brought us to the point where cheap processed food have made people unhealthy and unfit. And while the corporations reap the profits from the crap they sell, the rest of us bear the costs of those profits.

                    1. John Smith

                      You seem to be intentionally missing the point. The individual ingredients are nothing to be afraid of. They are ubiquitous. And have not been proven to be harmful.

                      Carrageenan has been banned in the EU for baby formula? Okay… and your point? We should just blindly follow whatever the EU regulators cook up?

                      You anti-science people lack critical thinking skills. You act as if any innovation or improvement in the way that food is handled is some massive conspiracy. Stop listening to Alex Jones and go read Pubmed.

                    2. OIFVet

                      I am actually published in a medical research journal. Are you? I am not anti-science but I am definitely against the scientists-as-God mentality that characterizes much of the Big Food and Big Ag industries. And for all of its faults, the EU’s regulatory apparatus still maintains a certain degree of independence, whereas US regulatory agencies have long-since been captured by the industries they are supposed to regulate. It is not a conspiracy, it is profit maximization and the interests of consumers come a distant third behind those of industry and the politico-bureaucratic apparatus it controls. You may be OK with trusting our corrupt regulatory system, but most thinking people are not.

                      For someone who is supposed to be so damned informed and knowledgeable you sure do a lot of name calling. Why s worked up Johnny, does your paycheck come from the food chemistry industry or something? Stop shilling, this ain’t Yahoo comments.

                2. abynormal

                  wally world has that covered with 4.00 to 0.00 cost diabetic meds. i shiver what too many of my family members gobble up…all free (on the front end).

          2. Chief Bromden

            So we need corporate rubbish foods with additives and GMOs or we’re all going to die of dysentery? Are these the “nice things” you speak of? Yes, whole foods have their place, way in the back of the line behind heavily-subsidized corporate junk food (sugar & corn) delivery systems. While the FDA is rubber stamping things like “artificial flavors” (which can be petroleum derivatives allowed based on a “threshold of toxicological concern”- which is a moving target based on where the corporations want the chemical dart to hit the safety board), on the other side of town it is raiding raw milk farmers and farmer co-ops that are actually trying to bring real food to people. If you are “health conscious”, you sure have a strange affliction for things that have absolutely nothing to do with health.

              1. MtnLife

                First and foremost it is entirely irresponsible, not to mention arrogant and egotistical, to unleash a replicating biological organism made through a bypassing of nature’s controls. Our biological knowledge is far from complete and there is no method of recall. This is especially reprehensible when these organisms provide no benefit other than making yields consistent – not high – consistent. Second is the attachment of intellectual property rights to inherent structure of living organisms and the abuses of the legal system that come with it. Third, it only increases the amount of pesticide application poisoning our bodies, soil, and water in the process. Most pesticides are made from petroleum, getting which is not exact a moral high road these days. Can you give a serious reason for using them besides profit for their makers?

              2. Yves Smith Post author

                A massive experiment is being conducted on the public with no consent and no controls. One of my friends, who worked for the NIH, thinks its reckless and appalling.

                1. John Smith

                  Yves are you aware of the minute differences between conventionally bred food and gmo food? Using the same standard, you should be afraid of any new cultivar of apple or broccoli that springs up. But somehow mutation breeding and the creation of interspecific hybrids is okay.

                  How much of this issue have you seriously researched? I really want to here why you believe this as clearly as possible.

                    1. John Smith

                      Are you kidding me?
                      The dude took one protein that is know to be specifically allergenic and inserted it into soybeans. What does exactly does that show? Do you honestly believe that there isn’t any testing done before a genetically modified product goes to market?

          3. Yves Smith Post author

            Funny you don’t talk about hydrogenated fats.

            Dairy fat, as in butter, melts at 80 degrees. Put butter out at room temperature.

            Hydrogenated fats are solid at room temperature. They are so far from food that, as a professor of nutrition at Ohio State and MD with a private practice said, “Cockroaches won’t touch it. You can leave it on your counter for two years and nothing will change.”

            1. John Smith

              Yves, I support almost all of what you post here. But your food reporting is lack luster. So trans-fats are more shelf stable and bad for your health. I could say the same thing about most saturated fats. Butter, lard, and palm oil are all horrible for you. But I don’t see anywhere near the anger towards those.

              1. Johann Sebastian Schminson

                There’s evidence that butter, lard, duck fat, goose fat, tallow, and other animal fats (typically more balanced with omega-3 and omega-6 acids than vegetable oils, which are primarily omega-6), are healthful fats.

                While correlation might not prove causation, it certainly implies it.

                Check this:


                and this (I can’t find the chart with the increase of heart disease superimposed on this chart, but it shows an almost exactly proportional increase in heart disease when veg oils displaced animal fats):


              2. Yves Smith Post author

                Diversionary and inaccurate. We are talking about hydrogenated fats, which were in the Wal-Mart bar you were trying to pass off as perfectly fine, and you respond with an ad hominem. Two can play that game. You are deeply invested in the agri-medical orthodoxy, when there is just about no science behind nutrition and it has in the past recommended high carb diets and continues to fixate on cholesterol levels, when there are far better markers for heart disease risk.

                And the Wal-Mart discussion was introduced by readers. It was not my reporting.

                1. John Smith

                  lolwut… There is no science behind nutrition… Are you just angry or do you actually mean this? Because there are a lot of people and articles at The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition who would disagree with you. You may wish to take that back.

                  Are you a low-carber and a cholesterol denialist?

              3. Chief Bromden

                “…. I could say the same thing about most saturated fats. Butter, lard, and palm oil are all horrible for you.”

                Well, now that we know you haven’t done your nutritional homework, you can go back to Dupont and collect your trolling paycheck.

                1. Lambert Strether

                  All Gaul is divided into three fats: Butter, lard, and olive oil. Funny we’ve been eating those foods for tens of thousands of years, long enough to have adapted to them on an evolutionary time scale, and yet only when mankind invented the corporate lab did we discover they were bad for us.

                  Pull the other one, John. It’s got bells on.

                  1. John Smith

                    Butter is roughly 60% saturated fat. More than half that saturated fat occurs as Palmitic acid and Myristic acid.

                    “…[T]here is convincing evidence that myristic and palmitic acids, trans fatty acids, high sodium intake, overweight and high alcohol intake contribute to an increase… [risk of Cardiovascular disease.]


                    Saturated fatty acids raise total and low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, but individual fatty acids within this group, have different effects (3-5). Myristic and palmitic acids have the greatest effect and are abundant in diets rich in dairy products and meat. Stearic acid has not been shown to elevate blood cholesterol and is rapidly converted to oleic acid in vivo.”

                    People with large bullhorns like yourself should at least make an attempt to be factually accurate Lambert. This is nearly as bad as Yves saying nutrition isn’t a real science.

      2. Carolinian

        Just wonder if anyone bothered to leave a non Walmart ice cream in the sun to see what would happen. You do realize generic brands are often made in the same factory and labeled on the way out. For that matter a Klondike bar would likely do exactly the same thing. Food companies use ingredients like seaweed extract to give texture to a manufactured product. This may seen disgusting but worth pointing out that the real thing would probably be more expensive or have poor shelf life.

        I’m not defending all the practices of the food industry but a little perspective, please.

        1. abynormal

          After hearing the mother’s claims, the media decided to do a test as well. That test involved leaving ice cream products outside in the hot sun for a half of an hour. The products tested included regular Haagen Daz ice cream, a Klondike Bar, and of course, a Great Value ice cream sandwich from Walmart.

          The Haagen Daz melted right away. Of course, Haagen Daz vanilla ice cream contains only cream, skim milk, sugar, egg yolks and vanilla extract. The Klondike Bar melted a little. It contains some ingredients similar to Walmart’s Great Value ice cream. The media reported that the Great Value ice cream sandwich from Walmart didn’t appear melted much at all. The Great Value ice cream remained solid. The reporter contacted Walmart, but representatives didn’t want to comment. The media testers concluded that ingredients designed to keep the Walmart ice cream sandwiches cheaper may be the culprits.

            1. abynormal

              dang if don’t have a typical American spiral to it…

              Häagen-Dazs was bought by Pillsbury in 1983. General Mills bought Pillsbury in 2001.[13][14] However, in the United States and Canada, Häagen-Dazs products are produced by Nestlé subsidiary Dreyer’s, which acquired the rights as part of the General Mills-Pillsbury deal.[15][16] The brand name is still owned by General Mills but is licensed to Nestlé in the US and Canada.

              To offset increasing costs of their ingredients and the delivery of the product, Häagen-Dazs announced that in January 2009 it would be reducing the size of their ice cream cartons in the US from 16 US fl oz (470 ml) to 14 US fl oz (410 ml).[17] Additionally they announced that in March 2009 they would be shrinking the 32 US fl oz (950 ml) container to 28 US fl oz (830 ml).[18] In response, Ben & Jerry’s said that they would not be changing the sizes of their cartons.[17][19]

              In 2009, a sign that appeared to invite only foreigners to a newly opened Häagen-Dazs in New Delhi, India, led to complaints. The Indian subsidiary removed it and apologized.[20][21]
              (‘only foreigners’…spew and tears)

              1. Paul Niemi

                Do you see the same flaw that I see in those numbers? Consider that ice cream, a frozen product, is sold by the fluid ounce, not by weight. That means nothing is stopping the dairy from pumping the ice cream full of air to fill the container with half as much product. The USDA has never ruled that ice cream should be sold by weight.

                1. toldjaso

                  They started the air pump&dump in the late 1950’s, which is why the only way to get a pint of decent ice cream is “hand-packed” before your eyes.

            1. abynormal

              its cool…not sure ‘who’ the media are that tested. i suspect too much and not enough…draining’)

        2. ewmayer

          Trader Joe’s ice cream melts quickly when exposed to room temperature.

          Haven’t tried Costco ice cream (but their Kirkland beers are surprisingly good, app. not having most of your $ go to brand advertising helps in that regard)), perhaps another reader can tell us about the melting properties of that.

      3. hunkerdown

        Instead of, you know, milk and cream? Are we supposed to thank you for that?!

        “Food nerds” ruin food by turning it into products, or worse, “experiences”. Maybe we’re just not into you.

    7. craazyman

      faaaak, I’d eat it. You only live once. And it looks like it tastes pretty good !

      maybe ski resorts can add the chemicals to snowmaking machines. wouldn’t that be cool, no pun intended.

      1. Lambert Strether

        Spy Magazine, July 1989:

        [T]he Twinkie’s survival of a 120-foot drop, along with some of
        the unusual phenomena associated with the “creamy filling” and
        artificial coloring, should give pause to those observers who would
        unequivocally categorize the Twinkie as “food.” Further clinical
        inquiry is required before any definite conclusions can be drawn.

        1. craazyman

          Now I’m getting a craving for one of those things. Jesus. It kicked in right after I saw the pic on HuffPo. Oh man. This is supposed to disgust somebody but me, if one of those was here right now I’d wolf it down in 3 bites.

          I’m way to lazy to go up to the supermarket to find one even though it’s 3 blocks and the nearest Wal-Mart is 15 miles from here. Even there, getting from a car to the greeter would be waaay to much work. If anybody made it that far, you’d face half a mile probably walking the aisles to find the damn thing.

          Thankfully when you’re civilized and live in New Yark there’s food delivery. There’s two diners within 3 blocks and I bet both have ice cream. Holy smokes what do all you flyover people do? It sounds like hell out there.

          1. jonboinAR

            1) I always hated Twinkies. I didn’t have nothing against them except they didn’t taste good.
            2) Our roads aren’t too congested. Also, plenty of convenience stores.

      2. MtnLife

        With those agents being thickeners it would really suck as it would change the fluid dynamic principles upon which skis/snowboards work and make it feel like you were sliding over mashed potatoes. Untracked snow in late spring is very similar. Besides, there’s enough chemicals in the snow anyways.

  5. diptherio

    Back in February, the NYC Council committee on Community Development held a hearing to consider awarding $1.2 to an assortment of worker co-op development agencies. I recently dug up the transcript from the bowels of the council website, and have been pulling out some of the testimony for posterity. Here’s the first batch: four worker-owners on co-ops, family, labor abuse and jobs with justice:

    Against the Odds ~Grassroots Economic Organizing

  6. steviefinn

    On the not wanting to admit that you are poor thing – I remember many years ago in the mid 70’s being in a state funded secondary school ( Not grammar school ) classroom when the teacher was explaining the British class system. Afterwards she asked those who considered their family to be middle class to put up their hands. Everybody except myself & another kid put their hand up – I knew my family were hard up & the other kids family used to pick coal from a local mines slag heap, & then as a family transport it home in the family pram. The teacher informed the whole of the class that we were all members of the working class, pointing out that there was no-one below us – This didn’t go down to well.

    The funny thing about it was that as far as I remember most Mothers then didn’t work & we were part of a thriving community with almost full employment. This was all before Thatcherism which led to the selling off of public housing, the start of using your home as an investment vehicle & easy access to credit etc. I imagine that all those who since them days who have flash cars, their supposedly own house & are as couples slaving away to pay the average household debt of 54 Grand, would now be even less inclined to describe themselves as poor or working class.

    1. Johann Sebastian Schminson

      Reagan did the same, here.

      The middle class confuses debt with wealth.

    2. Christopher Dale Rogers


      Where have you been man, we don’t have poor in the UK, nor do we have a class system anymore – you are either a “striver” of a “shirker” and hence deserve all you get. This is not only official policy of the ConDem Alliance, but the NuNuNeoLiberalLabour Party.

      By the way, the Secondary Modern School I attended in Souths Wales was predominantly “working class” and this was in the late 70s and very early 80s – Thatcher was not much liked, and as you correctly state, most of our mothers stayed at home or worked part time. Now we can’t afford to purchase similar homes we grew up in with two working full-time. They call this progress, me, I call it usury.

      1. steviefinn

        JSS.- Yes I realise that, I watched an Elizabeth Warren video that explained the research that has been done on the subject.

        CDR. – Well I have been on Tebbit’s bike or more accurately on a ferry to Ireland some 16 yrs ago as the pottery industry in Stoke in which I worked, had been largely out-sourced or off-shored mainly to China. The same thing happened after 8 years in the Republic & then Lenihan after 2008 sold the country to the lowest bidder, which forced me to escape over the border where it was at least cheaper to live & where if nothing else you can hustle.

        I occasionally visit family in England & sometimes I drive through the estate where I spent my teens which is now perhaps what could be called a Neo-community – a place that’s had it’s heart ripped out. I would call what’s happened a social rape perpetrated by parasitic userers who have sucked the blood from those that they sold a false dream.

      2. Glenn Condell

        we don’t have poor in the UK, nor do we have a class system anymore – you are either a “striver” or a “shirker” and hence deserve all you get.’

        Ha, here in Australia we are either ‘lifters’ or ‘leaners’… maybe the edict from Bilderberg, the Trilat Comm and the CFR includes a requirement for local slang variants to be employed.

    3. dearieme

      Slag heaps don’t have coal on them; they have slag. Perhaps it was a pit spoil heap?

      1. steviefinn

        I bow to your superior knowledge – To be honest I have no idea where the coal actually came from or as was rumoured, whether they really stored it in their bath. The family surname was Slack which kind of summed them up.

  7. bwilli123

    From Immanuel Wallerstein 1 June 2014

    “Let me therefore propose that Ukraine is merely a convenient excuse or proxy for a larger geopolitical division that has nothing whatsoever to do with its internal schism. What haunts the Nulands of this world is not a putative “absorption” of Ukraine by Russia – an eventuality with which she could live. What haunts her and those who share her views is a geopolitical alliance of Germany/France and Russia. The nightmare of a Paris-Berlin-Moscow axis has receded a little bit since its acme in 2003, when U.S. efforts to have the U.N. Security Council endorse the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003 were defeated by France and Germany.
    The nightmare has receded a bit but lurks there just beneath the surface, and for good reason. Such an alliance makes geopolitical sense for Germany/France and Russia. And in geopolitics, what makes sense is a constraint that insisting on ideological differences can affect very little. Geopolitical choices may be tweaked by the individuals in power, but the pressure of long-term national interests remains strong.

    China, on the other hand, is fundamentally interested in taming the United States and reducing its role in east Asia. But this said, it wants to reinforce, not weaken, its links with the United States. China seeks to invest in the United States at the bargain rates it thinks are now available. It wants the United States to accept its emergence as the dominant regional power in east and southeast Asia. And it wants the United States to use its influence to keep Japan and South Korea from becoming nuclear powers.
    Of course, what China wants is not consonant with the prevailing ideological language in the United States. Nonetheless, there seems to be quiet support for such an evolution of alliances within the United States, especially within major corporate structures. Just as Russia wants to use the friendship treaty to encourage certain groups in Germany to move in the direction it finds most useful, so China wishes to do the same with the United States”

    And related from Feb 2014

    “Why does a Paris-Berlin-Moscow axis make sense? There are good reasons. One is the U.S. turn towards a Pacific-centrism replacing its long history of Atlantic-centrism. Russia’s nightmare, and Germany’s as well, is not a U.S.-China war but a U.S.-China alliance (one that would include Japan and Korea as well). Germany’s only way of diminishing this threat to its own prosperity and power is an alliance with Russia. And her policy towards Ukraine shows precisely the priority she gives to resolving European issues by including rather than excluding Russia. “

    1. grayslady

      These are insightful articles. So much makes sense with what is going on in Europe, in particular, when you read them. I wish the author had spent more time drawing out the thread of commercial interests in influencing European government policy, just as we see happening in the U.S.

    2. Jackrabbit

      Superpower geopolitical head-butting may not be the only reason that Ukraine is ‘in play’.

      Kolomoisky has a powerful «insurance policy» against any legal recriminations. He counts on the powerful Israel Lobby in the United States to support his cause. Kolomoisky has publicly spoken of Ukraine as the «second homeland» of the Jewish people. And with «The Lobby» in his corner, Kolomoisky has indirect access to the highest levels of power within the Department of Defense, NATO, and the U.S. Intelligence Community.

      Kolomoisky is a key player that turns up at virtually every major action. I’d say his thinking is probably aligned with neocons and Israel. We can not know to what extent zionists are ‘playing’ the Ukraine situation (if at all) or if Kolomoisky is ‘playing’ the Zionists. But ethinic cleansing, gratuitously provided by Ukrainian nationalists, and emigration from the looming Ukrainian depression, could provide an unparallelled opportunity for zionist/jewish investment/immigration that would see zionist/jewish presence skyrocket from the current low of 0.01% of the population (see wikipedia). The population has already fallen from 48.5 million in 2001 to 44.3 million in 2014 (an 8.7% decline)!

      Ordinary people might find such strategic planning to be ‘bizarre’. Yet we have seen similarly ‘bizarre’ plans that appear to have been acted upon (covert support for Islamic sectarian war). When you’re a little country surrounded by enemies, paranoid thinking and long-range planning are necessary. Some at NC have noted that Israel has not condemned Russia and speculated that Israel might want good relations with Russia to guard against US/Western decline and the rise of Russia-China. However, a Zionist-controlled Ukraine could provide Israel with many benefits, including market access, military protection, and reduced reliance on direct US military support (via US Military sales to Ukraine instead). Furthermore, the current geopolitical situation – a captured, stalemated Europe, sectarian war that occupies ME enemies, and US pivot to Asia – seems favorable to the growth of a strong Zionist-centered Ukraine-Israel alliance.

      The loss of Crimea and (possibly) Dunbas might lessen the appeal, however, because a Ukraine that is dependent on others for energy can not be a powerful a protector (note: Crimea has large natural gas deposits off shore and Dunbas has large shale gas deposits). Hence, the strong need to prevail against the separatists.

      File under: irresponsible not to speculate.

      H O P

      1. toldjaso

        “Israel, even with the Zionist economic interests in Russia such as BP, has a historical interest in the 45,000 member strong Jewish community in the port of Odessa, which has a large stake in the financial sector, military electronics industry, missile production and weapons factories, PBN and GQR, lobbying organization controlled by American Jewish conservatives, are the most influential force in Ukraine politics.” [Does this explain Sergei Eisenstein’s timely propashock film: “Battleship Potemkin”?]
        — from
        “Was M17 Sabotaged By An Israeli Security Team At Amsterdam Schiphol Airport?” by Yoichi Shimatsu:

        Recall books framing the Big Picture:
        “Old NAZIS, the NEW RIGHT, and the REPUBLICAN PARTY: Domestic fascist networks and their effect on U.S. cold war politics” by Russ Bellant (1988, 1989, 1991, South End Press, Boston MA)
        “RUNNING COMMENTARY: The Contentious Magazine That Transformed the Jewish Left Into the Neoconservative Right” by Benjamin Balint (2010, Public Affairs, New York)

        For precise comprehensive analysis of puzzle and frame, see:
        “MH17: Beware of the Chameleons” by Wayne MADSEN:

      2. hunkerdown

        Oh yes, Kolomoiskii is a piece of work. Would that Putin’s daughter slip him the shiv herself.

  8. Katniss Everdeen

    RE: We should begin preparing now for the evacuation of Israel Fabius Maximus. This takes the “Israel is beleagured” position, but even so, contends Israel will inevitably lose.

    Yeah. “israel is beleagured.” Among other things.

    In case it wasn’t intuitively obvious, the “we” refers to Americans. And where would these “beleagured” souls be evacuated to? Why to AMERICA, of course. Specifically, southern UTAH!!!!! I wonder if the Mormons know they’ve been designated the new Palestinians.

    ” The lands could be a combination of developed areas having preexistent infrastructure such as military bases, and remote areas that would permit larger cohesive populations, but require more work and resources, such as the extensive government tracts in southern Utah.”

    And how would this “physically adopting Israel” work? Well, possibly a “nation within a nation solution, where the Israeli people possess lands, the resident natural resources, and political sovereignty. Alternatively, a federal-like construct can be conceived whereby semi-autonomous Israeli communities reside aboard granted government lands, with self-governance rights resembling those afforded states.” In Utah.

    And wouldn’t this “relocation” further “beleaguer” the already “beleaguered” Israeli innocents? Why no. ” … the massive assimilation of Israelis who already possess dual citizenship or have family in the U.S. will ease the difficulty initially.”

    There’s plenty more hilarity in Section 7: “Preparing a U.S. Home.” Like how after all the Israeli women and children have taken over Utah, the IDF will be free to wage nuclear war for the “holy land” without worrying about collateral damage. Iran would be hamstrung.

    And how the torah has made it OUR responsibility to preserve “Israel’s blood” because nobody else on the planet wants the job.

    I suspect “Fabius” suffers irreparable brain damage from a “maximus” head trauma to think this is gonna fly. I suppose he’d favor changing the Constitution so that Bibi can be president too. Preservation of “Israeli blood” and all.

    1. Jagger

      —–Specifically, southern UTAH!!!!! —-

      Well if history is any guide, the new Israel would not be happy with just southern Utah. Give the new Israel 10 years and Salt Lake City would be the new Gaza. After another 20 years, they would be fighting for the water in the Colorado River. The Rocky Mountains and the Pacific Ocean would be needed for natural defensive borders and on and on. I just don’t think the idea would work out too well.

      1. Katniss Everdeen

        That Mormon Tabernacle is pretty darn impressive.

        A”holy land” is a “holy land.” Use what you’ve got. Desperate times call for desperate measures.

    2. toldjaso

      They occupied Kansas awhile back. “First we take NY, Florida, Kansas and Utah, then we take the Whole Thing.” What’s not to like?

      For reference, see “BABYLON’S BANKSTERS” by Farrell, Part III (re occupation, subversion, conquering of the Roman Empire by these *Orientals* — It’s Magick!) KissDeath “foretold” the end of ZIsrael” awhile ago. “Chinese” Rothgold monopoly helps sadists do Imperial Dirty Work, torturing the People during America’s long, long “night in the barrel” (like “Mao’s China” in a different venue). The prison doors will open on command for mass slaughter of the “enemy” just as they did under Bro. Kerensky’s command in “Russia”. It’s the “modus operandi” throughout history, the TELL of sadistic revenge by such as KissDeath.

      What fun for the MasterBreed! A Devil’s Piknik! Gold-mining SLAVERY in the *Homeland* is *in the cards* (v. Farrell op.cit. anent gold-mining slaves). Wonder why Poppy gave Barick’s all that golden land in Nevada, by Bronfman? Why did Reid sell his portion?

      It’s Hell On Wheels, moving from territory to territory, profiting TheIronHeel throughout history, dontcha gittit?
      Recall the history linked below, alert to the meaning of “Russia” by Bush&Vulcans” at the forge:

    3. Editor of the Fabius Maximus website

      Katniss ,

      (1) “In case it wasn’t intuitively obvious, the ‘we’ refers to Americans

      As it says on the masthead, “A discussion about geopolitics … from an American’s perspective.” There are other points of view, perhaps even more legitimate ones, but that’s ours.

      (2) “Like how after all the Israeli women and children have taken over Utah, the IDF will be free to wage nuclear war for the ‘holy land’ without worrying about collateral damage.”

      That’s a creative scenario. I believe that’s a charitable way to describe it.

      (3) “I suspect ‘Fabius’ …”

      As was stated many times in the post (i.e., at the beginning, middle, and end), it was written by Franz Gayl (Major, USMC, retired).

      (4) “…suffers irreparable brain damage from a ‘maximus’ head trauma to think this is gonna fly.”

      “There are more things in heaven and earth, Katniss,
      Than are dreamt of in your philosophy.”

      This was intended as thought-provoking speculation. We live in an increasingly complex and rapidly-changing world. Staring right before our noses, adopting only ad hoc solutions, might result in a painful 21st century for both America and the world.

      We recommend a different path. Look at other fields as the IPCC does climate change: list assumptions, give probabilities for what we believe (instead of the often-childishly confident assertions that rule the NYT and WSJ op-eds), and describe a range of future scenarios. Plan accordingly.

        1. kareninca

          Funny how none of your very clear points have actually been refuted, Katniss. The Fabius Editor weaseled. The article was very clearly written, with specific suggestions. It was also written by the sort of person who describes scenarios that are meant to be implemented, if possible. But when you pointed out serious problems with the suggestions, Fabius wailed “oh, it was all just SPECULATIVE!! How can you meanly attack our SPECULATON???? That is so WRONGSY!!!!” No addressing of the issues that you raise, none at all.

          Well, I don’t see Americans accepting a state within a state. Never. What would be next, a mini “World ‘O ISIS”, with its own special privileges and laws? Why the hell should some subset of the population (other than Native Americans) get such special privileges? I can’t go to the doctor without having the surveillance nanny state inserted in every orifice, but some part of the population gets a free pass to self-govern? Screw that. Sure, we’ll take refugees, lots of them, who want to assimilate; that’s very different.

          While I feel great empathy for the bulk of Israelis, how many Americans think we owe them any more than we owe any other foreign population? Not many. We aren’t inviting all of Eastern Europe’s Roma, or all of the Middle East’s Christians (and they are far more endangered, and right now, too). If we are going to make “they’re a special case, we owe them” arguments, there will be many, many foreign populations in that line.

          1. Editor of the Fabius Maximus website


            “Funny how none of your very clear points have actually been refuted, Katniss. The Fabius Editor weaseled. … No addressing of the issues that you raise, none at all.”

            Yes, that’s so. As I said, I’m not the author. It’s not my place to defend his article. I merely corrected her error regarding authorship, made an observation about her thinking, and gave a broader context for the post.

            If you post your comments on the FM website, the author will reply.

      1. fresno dan

        Editor of the Fabius Maximus website
        July 26, 2014 at 1:08 pm

        I enjoyed the article and thought it was thought provoking. I made a comment about how the right wing in this country had changed from an anti-Semitic base to being fervently pro Israel further up in this string. At that point, I hadn’t read:
        Israel Losing Support from Its Biggest Ally: American Evangelical Christians George Washington

        I also not that when the US gave up the Panama canal what a backlash that provoked (I can see the comments about it being a Goldman Sachs scheme, and why is all that money being spent on foreigners instead of ‘Mericans. I think we would find there is a lot of anti Semitism left in this country – the talking head neo-cons who might support such an idea (would they? Or do they only find Israel of value as a forward base???) might be surprised to discover that Israel support is a mile wide and an inch deep. It may be when such a scenario of relocating Israelis to the US is when the US general support of Israelis has weakened the most.

        As a logical proposition, there really is plenty of Federal Land that is available, and the cost would probably be far less than the military add we currently give to Israel rather than just giving them an equivalent size piece of land here. But when have humans been logical?????

        1. kareninca

          I think that most evangelicals love Israel-the-location, of the origin of Christianity. They love the soil, the hills, the trees, the monuments, the landscape; it reminds them of what is most important to them. That is BY FAR their greatest passion for the place. They may also feel a benign interest in actual human Israelis (especially the observant ones, whom they have beliefs in common with), but that is infinitely weaker. Saving Israeli people would not likely be more important to them, than saving anyone else in a difficult refugee position. Especially if the Israeli people were no longer in a position to protect and defend ancient shrines. I realize that is not an appetizing assessment, but I am afraid it is true.

          So, if you want to have the Fabius/Gayl scenario pan out, you have to move the shrines, too. And a lot of dirt. Better do it fast, before the shrines go the way of Jonah’s tomb.

          1. toldjaso

            But aren’t they hearing the litany of Texe Marrs, how the (“Babylon’s Bankster”) “Jews” of RothIsrael&Co. are NOT “children of Abraham” — hence have no claim on “the promised land” as THEIRS ALONE, or on the pledge of allegiance to them by Evangelical Christians?

            It’s true, and geneticists even in London prove it.
            Jon Entine does his best to admit to the findings while discrediting them:
            “ABRAHAM’S CHILDREN: Race, Identity, and the DNA of the Chosen People” by Jon Entine (2007, Grand Central Publishing, New York, Boston)

            A “wrinkle” in the propaganda.

        2. Editor of the Fabius Maximus website

          Fresno Dan,

          I agree, the BBC survey posted at GW’s blog is of great importance — showing the deterioration of Israel’s geopolitical position. On Monday I’ll post an update to a 2006 post about Israel’s horrifically high-risk grand strategy: “The Fate of Israel”. That polling data will feature prominently.

    4. ignim brites

      A more likely location for a nation state of “New Israel” would be the lightly populated counties of north east New York. The lands could be mostly acquired privately and the acquisition could start immediately. Obviously there would need to be Congressional action in the end but this might not be too difficult.

          1. toldjaso

            Adirondacks would have the most pristine water in the nation? While the Catskills clans keep potable water in the fold of Wall Street&Co.

          2. kareninca

            This just boggles my mind. Here you are, offering someone else’s home. Because “it is lightly populated.” Isn’t that approach what started the problem that is presently being faced?

            Oh, we can buy it. We have money, the land is cheap. Like buying land from the Indians; toss em some beads. Yeah, it’s all about money; nothing to do with the preferences of people who already live in a place. They are poor and powerless, after all.

            Here’s a thought. Why not have a part of the U.S. INVITE this. Why not do things that make yourself WELCOME, instead of imposing yourself on those who can’t fight you?

    5. hunkerdown

      Oh, I imagine the Mormons are quite prepared to defend their prophesied theocracy against the other one, but I’d rather be upwind just in case.

  9. Carolinian

    Arizona: Last time I talked to my friend who lives in Phoenix she said the day’s high was 116. The Central Arizona Project canal that takes water from Lake Mead to Phoenix and Tuscon is a couple of hundred yards behind her house. When it finally dries up it will make a great skateboard track.

    And yet they continue to build housing developments…seems to be the only industry left in Phoenix these days. Many are occupied by northern retirees and Canadians (the Snowbirds).

    1. JEHR

      My parents (who lived in the Okanagan in B.C.) used to own a house in the Phoenix area where they went each summer on vacation. One year when they arrived, the air conditioning was broken and my mother spent more than one day sitting in the bathtub filled with cold water. That cured me of ever wanting to spend a summer there!

      1. MtnLife

        I’m quite a fan of Revelstoke and have passed through the Okanagan before. I have to say I’ve been staring at my screen for nearly 10 min now, in total shock, wondering why in the hell they would leave comfortable climate of beautiful, scenic, verdant BC (with all its water) for the scorching, bleak desolation of the Phoenix desert… in the summer. I could see going at the end of March when it’s bleak, grey, and cold so therefore bleak, red, and warm is an upgrade but summer is pure masochism.

    2. jrs

      Remember housing is a great investment in your future – buy a house in Phoenix or some other present or future dessert!! If they build them more people will come thinking it’s a great investment! Housing always goes up! And remember this giant lie of an economic system can be fixed with a few small tweaks!

      Counterpunch had an article recently on how they paint the banks of Lake Mead because how much the water is receding would be too shocking to the visitors. Yes, everything even the great outdoors is virtual reality now. Because actual reality would be too shocking, it might impede one’s precious comfort and intellectual haze and emotional deadness. The people might be shocked into actually wanting to save the only known habitable planet. Can’t have that.

      I do wonder why hot areas don’t at least have buildings designed for the heat, high ceilings, large overhangs etc. Though that again would entail grappling with actual reality, better just to figure endless energy use in denial of it. Though 115 regardless is pushing it without A/C (whereas I do think in a dry climate with proper housing 95 can be okay).

    3. jrs

      What I actually know drove someone to Phoenix is unaffordable California housing. Which is true, but maybe better to rent where it’s not 115 than buy where it is.

      1. Carolinian

        A litle late to get back to you but bear in mnd it’s quite pleasant during the winter. Many people live in AZ on a seasonal basis.

        And to MtnLife: the desert is quite beautiful. Why do you think Edward Abbey loved it so much?

        1. MtnLife

          Actually, I do love Bryce, Zion, the Petrified Forest, Grand Canyon, etc and have a serious level of respect for all life that manages to thrive there. The land around Phoenix is just really barren, flat, and featureless. Not a bad place for serious contemplation as you have no distractions. It really just bothers me though, on an ecological level, to put a city that large there. In the same vein, while I dislike the flatness of the plains I am even more bothered by the ecological dead zone that they have become.

          1. Carolinian

            It is there in part because of the Salt River which is Phoenix’s other source of water. This flows from the White Mtns to the east and feeds large reservoirs east of the city. Some of the old Anasazi canals were still flowing in the 1960s–not sure about now. On designated days you would lift a gate in your backyard and flood it with water. Or so I’ve been told. They also made much greater use then of “Swamp Coolers” which use water rather than freon to cool the air. These only work in a very dry climate.

            And you probably haven’t been hanging out in the parts of town I have. The Superstition Mtns–remnant of a former volcanic landscape–are quite spectacular.

  10. Banger

    Andrew Vltcheck in today’s Counterpunch quotes his friend Andrew Marshall (Reuters chief correspondent in Iraq) as follows:

    “There is a tendency in the 21st century World of 24-hour rolling news coverage to overemphasize and dramatize individual incidents in a conflict, subjecting them to intense coverage, while at the same time failing to analyze the underlying causes and patterns of conflict. The task of analyses is to focus on the “signal”, not the “noise”, but most modern media do the opposite. It’s also clearly true that powerful global interests seek to control the narrative by staging events to drown out the signal with noise.

    I’m very clear and all of you should be clear that the U.S. and now European media is, collectively, a virtual Ministry of Truth for the Empire which provides a Narrative background for contemporary life that is pure propaganda built out of carefully selected fragments of world events that they call “news.” But this isn’t what Marshall is getting at. Beyond the false Narratives about historical events, the main project is to create a deeper Narrative that history has no pattern–stuff happens–it is just noise. This is done (consciously or unconsciously), in my view, to create a sense of insecurity and incoherence that disrupts the ability of anyone to form a coherent Narrative out of the sum total of reported news. What ends up happening, since human beings require coherent narratives, is that each of us individually or along tribal grounds connect the dots ourselves usually in somewhat arbitrary and eccentric ways–anyone who read or heard interviews with the average Tea Party conservative is struck by what appears the almost insane mishmash of ideas that underlie their own narrative. One of the reasons Americans rarely talk about politics is that we are well aware that the particular “facts” we pick out to fill out our narrative is bound to be fairly ideosyncratic and often come from the last program or movie we have watched or, less frequently, a book or article we may have read. This tendency exists across the political spectrum.

    Our greatest need is to deconstruct the official idea that history is “one damn thing after another” and begin to see patterns, not out of random bits of information but by the totality. The tendency to view history as about particular characters like Obama or Putin without ever bothering to understand the background and, therefore, motivation of those characters and the coalitions they represent. If you don’t understand what happened under Yeltsin to Russia (hardly ever reported in the mainstream) you can’t understand the policies of the Russian Federation and its easy to fall for the full-throated condemnation of Putin as just “bad.” Leaders, are just “bad” and never mind what motivates their policies or whether they reflect the general attitudes or not of the general population–if they oppose U.S. hegemony they are, like Assad, “bad” while the Saudi Royals are just cuddly guys in cool robes who we love because they are feeelthy rich. Never mind the Saud family is far more repressive and nasty, if we bothered to look at the facts, than Assad could ever dream of being–we just forget that part.

    Therefore, by making history and current events incoherent the official nihilistic Narrative sticks. The end result is most people are confused and believe things are f—ed up but they don’t trust Muslims because they are terrorists because the don’t even know that to talk intelligently about the subject they should investigate what happened after WWI in the region and how did Islamic fundamentalism get such a hold on many people in the Islamic world. If they bothered to do the research they would see the hand of British and U.S. intelligence involved with consistently aiding Islamic radicalism and consistently undermining reformist and modernist factions in the Islamic world–not that the West is directly responsible only that they pushed it in an effort to weaken the people of the region so they could directly control it–the support of Saudi Arabia is the most dramatic example of this policy.

    1. trish

      The MSM overemphasizes and dramatizes individual incidents in a conflict, ignoring analysis, the “signal”…exactly.
      I call this the people magazine aspect of the news. the media spoon-feeds this to a public whose short attention spans and preoccupation with assorted circuses generally means they don’t want to read much else. All part of the infotainment culture and whose that working for? And now a whole new generation now being raised on this short-attention-span infotainment…

    2. Ulysses

      “Our greatest need is to deconstruct the official idea that history is “one damn thing after another” and begin to see patterns, not out of random bits of information but by the totality.” Very important point!

      Late in October 2011 I returned to my laptop from the stimulating public forum of Occupied Zuccotti and shared with the dozens of readers of my very (and I do mean very!!) humble blog a tale from late 14th c. Florence. The narrative I shared was drawn from Machiavelli’s account of the Ciompi Revolt, the very first government seizure by an organized proto-industrial proletariat in European history.

      Although I’m not as optimistic now as I was nearly three years ago, I would still stand by the words I wrote then on concluding the narrative:
      “Here’s the difference between an antiquarian and an historian: the former cares about the past for its own sake, while the latter seeks to understand the present more deeply through knowing about historical developments that still shape our world. As an historian, this is what I would say the Ciompi revolt can teach us– the elite’s hold on power is always weak, the masses may seize power whenever they are so inclined. However, elites are like the moles in whack-a-mole: eventually they pop back up, and start screwing things up for the rest of us until we whack ’em again! Peace out, brothers and sisters…”

      1. Glenn Condell

        Nice find. I liked this:

        ‘we must have two ends in our deliberations: one is to make it impossible for us to be punished for the things we have done in recent days, and the other is to be able to live with more freedom and more satisfaction than we have in the past’

        That should perhaps have been the first order of business for Occupy, a guaranteed amnesty as a precondition for negotiation, then a demand for tangible change on at least one basic motivating issue, such as a referendum on the future of the Fed, or the adoption of a Tobin tax.

        ‘… If we wish that our old errors be forgiven us, [we need] to make new ones, redoubling the evils, multiplying the arson and robbery– and to contrive to have many companions in this, because when many err, no one is punished, and though small faults are punished, great and grave ones are rewarded.”

        Not a bad idea, that seems to be the playbook for Israel, the US, Wall St and the City, the intel agencies…

    3. Jackrabbit

      “Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it”


      “The struggle against power is the struggle of memory against forgetting”

      H O P

  11. Swedish Lex

    What proportion of Israelis buy into the BS of this war?
    How many Israelis do thoroughly understand that their society is a big part of the problem?
    How many Israeli soldiers refuse to participate in the carnage?

    1. Johann Sebastian Schminson

      We could ask the same questions of ourselves during the run-up to the Iraq war.

      Imagine how badly we’d have been manipulated if bombs were dropping into our neighborhoods on a regular basis after 9/11.

      Not that anyone’s behavior is excused for having this reaction — scare people enough, and they’ll fold like cheap card tables. The “common enemy” is a powerful political tool — even if it’s a bogeyman.

      1. toldjaso

        Even Christine Lagarde admits her position in her “numerology” speech to the Press Club in January 2014:
        “I DO AS I’M TOLD” — is how her speech begins. Check it out on YT.

        1. toldjaso

          Alert! Naval RIMPAC “EXERCISE” from June 26-August 1, 2014 may be COVER for whatever “event” Christine Lagarde is referring to cryptically in her speech to the National Press Club (owl is in their logo, connecting NPC with Bohemian Club of Jack London’s day).

          Will it cover a *false flag* event or outright nuclear first strike against Russia in the “magical 7” month of July? (They are already using MH17 as a false flag “justifying” aggression v. Russia.)

          Please study the YT video: “2014 July 20 Breaking News New World Order ALERT RIMPAC 2014 international Military exercise” [u2bheavenbound, June 25, 2014]. \
          Please note symbols on seals, and the “colors” of flags flying on ships. Note the flag of SINGULAR SIGNIFICANCE flying at 0:23/34:06 — the red cross on the white ground that flies above the BOE/the Corporation of the City of London (not an “International Red Cross” logo).
          Note that the effective “ground zero” of the MEETUP is said to be “Hawaii” — the AUDIO says “HAWAII” but the VIDEO says “PEARL HARBOR”.

          The conjunction of the “navies” of China and the United States with those of “select” others participating in the “EXERCISE” should raise questions in the mind of Prof. Wallerstein (ref. to his thesis on NC Links thread today, re China vis-a-vis the U.S.).

          The conjunction of Lagarde’s Numerology Codespeak “Telegraphing” filled with allusions to significant DATES —
          together with our knowledge that “EXERCISES” characteristically accompany ACTUAL DISASTERS such as took place on 9/11/2001 —
          in conjunction with the words “PEARL HARBOR” shown several times in the “RIMPAC” EXERCISE video on YouTube (which appears to be an ADVERTISEMENT), should WAKE US UP right now.

          1. toldjaso

            Lambert, I’m not kidding. Tomorrow, SUNDAY the TWENTY-SEVENTH OF JULY 2014 may be *Mayday!* What would PCR do?

            1. hunkerdown

              I don’t think they’d start until the “coalition of the bereaved and easily led” are on the ground. If Russia does not have essentially the whole country wired for sound and video by now, possibly including a live telemetry feed from every PLC in that NPP that was threatened, I’d be a little surprised.

      2. Banger

        I think we can ask ourselves even deeper questions as in that fact most people both on the right and left accept the bizarre notions of American Exceptionalism and ignore inconvenient facts particularly since the end of WWII when the media, in particular, created a false narrative about almost every major historical event of that time up until the present moment. The Israeli public or any other public is vulnerable to the repetition of lies that enforce the right-wing Junta that rune their and our society.

      1. Swedish Lex

        Thx. At least there are some Israeli soldiers that manage to see through the BS and are prepared to take the consequences.

        1. Glenn Condell

          During the previous Israeli massacre of Gaza and indeed for some time before that, I used to see a fair bit of play given to ‘refuseniks’, there were apparently loads of them and their ranks were growing. I can recall reading profiles of them and feeling rather hopeful about it.

          They have fallen off my radar, perhaps it’s just me, but I wouldn’t discount the possibility of a high level approach in recent years to crush them somehow, even if it is only via suffocation via a lack of media coverage.

          Some good ‘uns over there for sure, but if they’re invisible there is nothing to balance the impression left by a few of Max Blumenthal’s terrifying video reports that I saw a while ago on Israeli society, and reading recently about packs of roving Israeli youths attacking Arabs for sport, and seeing again the Sderoth picnickers watching the carnage their army is wreaking on defenceless civilians…

          Is it even possible for an Israeli soldier to be heroic given the context of their activities? Surely heroism can only be achieved by refusing. As for the settlers… I have never seen one that didn’t make my skin crawl. Admittedly I can only recall a couple being interviewed on TV (for Aust ABC), a lady from the States who had with her family taken custody of some land the IDF had helpfully cleansed the natives from, and who with arms waving and shoulders shrugging complained about the pathetic actions of the dispossessed in tossing the odd rock or stealing the odd orange. Another was possibly the geekiest young man in history, who coupled his completely benign appearance with a breathtaking bloodthirstiness and cruelty.

          The contrast between occupied and occupier can’t really be illustrated better than the confrontation between two callow IDF dorks and the wonderful Huwaida Arraf. There’s a hero if ever I saw one:

      2. Massinissa

        ONLY dozens? Not hundreds?

        Pardon me if I think thats pathetic, considering that theyre calling up thousands of reservists right? Not hundreds?

  12. jfleni

    RE: Urban Jungle a Tough Challenge for Google’s Autonomous Cars

    And in the meantime, desparately needed PUBLIC transit everywhere, is ignored in favor of automated gas-buggies we do NOT need, even though much of this technology could enhance and extend transit and jobs!

    What has “Giggle” really done? NADA!

    1. Massinissa

      Its made money for the PTB, and thats ALL that matters.

      Public transport? Gosh, wheres the money in that?

      Saved money by the working class is lost money for the neo-aristocracy.

  13. jfleni

    RE: Chinese government defers another default but only for the time being

    But after and if it happens, the misery will be relieved somewhat when the guilty and reckless face the firing squads! And the Chinese will do it too.

  14. docg

    The Kudzu article is a perfect example of confirmation bias. If Kudzu is spreading north due to warming, then so is the annual growing season — which would be seen as good news if it weren’t for the atmosphere of climate change hysteria now enveloping the US media. Which is more important? The spread of a weed? Or the possibility of an ever more abundant annual harvest for decades to come?

    1. Banger


      Ok, so ever heard of ecology? Ever heard that when it changes rapidly the higher level organisms are endangered and can’t adapt fast enough creating tension within each ecological system which, in turn, has a cascading effect on other systems? The balance is delicate and nature is equipped to handle a certain degree of change over time. However, it is also able to “handle” very rapid changes through positive feedback loops that disrupt systems and climate. For example massive warming will melt tundra and free up methane leading to greater warming leading to… you get the idea. There is something called “systems analysis” that you might look into.

      1. trish

        “Ever heard that when it changes rapidly the higher level organisms are endangered and can’t adapt fast enough creating tension within each ecological system which, in turn, has a cascading effect on other systems?”

        thank you. ecosystems are an amazing array of interrelated/interdependent organisms.

        and then there’s an adjoining issue re invasives- the use of herbicides, pesticides, new invasive organisms (which if not done carefully, properly just leads to more problems) to eradicate invasives…

        1. toldjaso

          “FUTURE SHOCK” by Alvin Toffler was the predictive programming for speedwarp change among humans, unto the IMF/Chicago Hitman “Shock Doctrine” coming to a town near you.

      2. docg

        More confirmation bias. Massive warming will also reduce the need to burn fossil fuels, which will act as a corrective. And it’s not at all clear that global warming will release massive amounts of methane into the atmosphere, nor is it clear that warming has much to do with extreme weather events, which have been a predictable feature of weather on this planet for millennia.

        When people refer to “the science” they tend to assume that everything they’ve heard about gw has been “scientifically” proven. It has not. I see no reason to deny the science telling us that global warming is for real, and that it’s most likely due to human activities — that does seem pretty solid. But as for the rest, no, it is NOT solid. It’s based on models that have yet to be tested and in many cases can’t be tested.

        The bottom line remains: we depend on fossil fuels, and fossil fuels are the safest alternative until sustainable energy sources, such as solar and wind power, can be perfected. Not everyone can afford a Prius, nor can the world afford the relatively clean energy we would all like to see. Ergo, climate change hysteria, even if it were justified, which it is not, is ultimately more destructive than climate change itself.

        To deal with this challenge we need to use our brains and make every effort to adapt. The world is not going to choose a suicidal energy policy based on the demands of spoiled, self-centered American feel-gooders. Get over it!

        1. hunkerdown

          Massive warming will also reduce the need to burn fossil fuels, which will act as a corrective.

          Because air conditioning just kinda goes away when the bourgeoisie decides the proles don’t need it anymore.

          Nice FUD. New clients?

        2. KFritz

          Let me get this straight. You want alternative technologies to be “perfected” before they’re implemented? Has hydrocarbon technology been “perfected?”

          We have the double-whammy of dwindling ‘easy to extract’ hydrocarbons and climate disruption due to hydrocarbons happening before your/our very eyes, and you describe the alternatives as “suicidal?”

          Climate disruption: the changes wrought by rising temperatures won’t be linear, ‘perfectly’ predictable without experiencing them first, or neat. They’ll almost certainly be disruptive of where people live and how/where we grow our food. If this is true, continuation of our present path will be suicidal/homicidal for many of us.

          Good luck to all those who will live and/or die in the aftermath of the intransigence of you and your thought-cohorts.

          1. KFritz


            All of us reading this are culpable, consuming hydrocarbons as we peruse or write.

            Your “suicide” is metaphorical, meaning the self-destruction of a way of life, a pattern of consumption. Mine is flesh, blood, and guts–lots of those.

            There is almost no doubt that we’ll be passing on a climatically disrupted planet to future generations. The only questions are how disrupted, and will humanity survive, and if so, at what level of culture and civilization.

            I also have almost no doubt that this reply won’t influence you one whit, but hopefully it can help some other, less ideologically rigid reader.

            1. jrs

              Yes and while in actual reality the rest of the world including the 3rd world clamors for climate agreements the U.S. government stalls. But in fantasy world it’s all about American do-gooders versus the rest of the world.

        3. MtnLife

          Heroin addicts depend on heroin. Just because not everyone can make it to or afford the methadone clinic does not mean continuing use of heroin is the best option. The safest course is to not use that energy at all. Is it going to be painful? You betcha. Probably going to have to give up jet setting, eating bananas in February, and (gasp!) your smart phone to mention the easy ones. I lived the first 18 months of my life in a tent, lived long portions of time without electricity or indoor plumbing, and currently live in a greater state of self-sufficiency than 99.9% of the country. I’m okay without fossil fuels, are you?

          The world is not going to choose a suicidal energy policy based on the demands of spoiled, self-centered American feel-gooders.

          Edit: feel-gooders should be deleted and this is a perfect example of what we have right now. We’re driving a car towards the cliff and you’re being cranky because you’d rather go off the cliff with the A/C blasting than get out and walk in the heat. Who’s spoiled?

          1. docg

            “Probably going to have to give up jet setting, eating bananas in February, and (gasp!) your smart phone to mention the easy ones. I lived the first 18 months of my life in a tent . . . ”

            I agree we’d be a lot better off if we cut out air travel and smart phones and were all able to live comfortably in tents. Same with automobiles. But the crisis that concerns me is not about affluent Americans who have all sorts of options. It’s about the literally billions of people living on the edge of poverty or already in dire poverty in so many other parts of the world (also the many living in poverty here in the USA, as a matter of fact). A major increase in the cost of fossil fuels would be devastating to the vast majority of such people, and for many reasons: cooking, heating, electricity, the cost of food, and in fact the cost of any commodity that requires power to manufacture and/or distribute.

            When I said that solar or wind power has not yet been perfected what I meant was that it was not yet economically viable. We in the developed world should certainly be investing in the research that will make them viable in future, but that time has not yet come. We’ll need them not because of global warming (because by that time it will be too late — actually it’s already too late), but because fossil fuels will eventually run out, and to me that is a far greater concern than global warming per se.

            Too many on this and so many other media outlets write as though it were simply a choice we have to make between a future calamity and the discontinuation of fossil fuels, as though the only reason for burning fossil fuels was to line the pockets of the super rich. It’s not that simple. I wish it were.

            1. MtnLife

              I’m totally okay with wind and solar. A large portion of those poor people you are concerned about live in areas that are (and will be) most affected by climate change and are often too poor to have most of those luxuries you mentioned anyways. Are you planning on saving them by drowning them? How about helping the people of Europe enter the next ice age through freshwater melt shutting off the Atlantic pump? The removal and use of those fossil fuels from the earth is what made our population so unbearably large in the first place – the “wonder” of petro farm machinery, petrofertilizers, petro -cides (herbi and pesti), petroleum based transportation system, and fossil fuel based energy production for our food storage system. Unfortunately you can’t talk about overpopulation, its relation to climate change, and the ugly realization that if we don’t pare back hard and soon everybody dies, without being labelled a Nazi or worse.

            2. jrs

              Uh I think most environmentalist have thought about the effect of higher energy prices on the poor in the developed world at least. They would mostly have carbon tax offsets to handle this. If that is not sufficient it leads logically to: we need greater income equality at the best or alleviation of poverty at the least. If that is impossible, why? If it’s because the 1% control the government or something then it shows them to be the enemy of making a sustainable society work, thus the enemy of humanity.

              As for the rest of the world, what are the predictions of the effect of climate change on say Africa? Not pretty eh?

          2. docg

            “Probably going to have to give up jet setting, eating bananas in February, and (gasp!) your smart phone to mention the easy ones. I lived the first 18 months of my life in a tent . . . ”

            I agree we’d be a lot better off if we cut out air travel and smart phones and were all able to live comfortably in tents. Same with automobiles. But the crisis that concerns me is not about affluent Americans who have all sorts of options. It’s about the literally billions of people living on the edge of poverty or already in dire poverty in so many other parts of the world (also the many living in poverty here in the USA, as a matter of fact). A major increase in the cost of fossil fuels would be devastating to such people, and for many reasons: cooking, heating, electricity, jobs, the cost of food, and in fact the cost of any commodity that requires power to manufacture and/or distribute.

            When I said that solar or wind power has not yet been perfected what I meant was that it was not yet economically viable. We in the developed world should certainly be investing in the research that will make them viable in future, but that time has not yet come. We’ll need them not because of global warming (because by that time it will be too late — actually it’s already too late), but because fossil fuels will eventually run out, and to me that is a far greater concern than global warming per se.

            Too many on this and so many other media outlets write as though it were simply a choice we have to make between a future calamity and the discontinuation of fossil fuels, as though the only reason for burning fossil fuels was to line the pockets of the super rich. It’s not that simple. I wish it were.

        4. abynormal

          “hysteria, even if it were justified, which it is not, is ultimately more destructive than climate change itself.” …what innovations do we need to use our brains for, if its just hysteria?

          “What to do if you find yourself stuck in a crack in the ground underneath a giant boulder you can’t move, with no hope of rescue. Consider how lucky you are that life has been good to you so far. Alternatively, if life hasn’t been good to you so far, which given your current circumstances seems more likely, consider how lucky you are that it won’t be troubling you much longer.”
          Douglas Adams, The Original Hitchhiker Radio Scripts

        5. jrs

          Of course it’s actually the rest of the world that stands to be more affected (not that it might not do us all in of course) by climate change from spoiled, self-center American carbon consumers. Take moral responsibility!

    2. Massinissa

      Do remember that climate change brings with it more extreme weather on both ends of the spectrum. Farming in more northerly climes wont be as easy as you may think.

      1. jrs

        Then there’s ocean acidification and other environmental destruction which will lead to the complete collapse of aquatic life. But no biggie or anything.

    3. abynormal

      ou la la! your the perfect pardn’r for this particular ‘weed’…it too COVERS UP EVERYTHING

      take it ALL..courtesy of hotlanta

      1. hunkerdown

        Hmm, genetically engineering kudzu to produce THC…. stop it Aby, you’re making me question myself!

        1. MtnLife

          If you have an actual bricks and mortar bookstore around see if they have the Cannabible 2 (I think, or 1), it has a pic of the Mothership strain. I think you’ll see your thoughts have already been realized.

    4. Yves Smith Post author

      You’ve tried running this line before.

      More northern climates getting warmer does not make them better for agriculture. It’s the length of the growing season and the intensity of sunlight. So global warming will make certain areas less viable for agriculture, via more droughts, and the more northern areas that get warmer won’t be as productive.


      1. docg

        Yves, if the increase in northern temperatures enables a weed to flourish, then it can certainly improve the conditions for agriculture generally as well. As far as droughts are concerned, the worst droughts in history by far — far worse than anything we’ve seen lately, happened in the past — as far as the USA is concerned, the dust bowl is probably the best example. There will always be droughts. And floods. And hurricanes, tornadoes, etc. While “the science” regarding warming in general is pretty convincing, “the science” predicting extreme weather events is based on untested models developed for the most part by gw activists. And if you’ve read my previous comments you know very well that sea levels have been rising since the 19th century at least and will continue to rise regardless of anything we decided to do about cutting the use of fossil fuels.

        The bottom line is that we depend on fossil fuels and there is simply no getting around that. Unless you want to see a new era of wall to wall nuclear power picking up the slack, which is the most likely scenario, sad to say. Unless you see some other alternative . . .

        1. flora

          The current drought in the western half of the US is the worst in 100 years. Farmers are pumping groundwater at an unsustainable rate to irrigate crops. Groundwater tables recharge at a trickle from surface waters, something like one-half inch per year.

          “According to the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, the federal water management agency, the [Colorado River] basin has been suffering from prolonged, severe drought since 2000 and has experienced the driest 14-year period in the last hundred years.”

  15. jfleni

    RE: Robert Rubin: How ignoring climate change could sink the U.S. economy

    It is certain that Rubin will excuse “Poison-dwarf-bros” and all the other plutocrats driving Climate Change in favor of mushy gibberish really blaming the rest of us! Plutocrats don’t change their spots, ever!

  16. fresno dan

    My thought is that even if the intent of the new operating system is benign, (i.e., it is not done to slow down present iphones) it does appear that it MAY have an actual affect. Unfortunately, the article never addresses IN FACT if the old phones are slower due to changes in the operating system.

    But it is an interesting point about network technology. If a new car model comes out and it is faster than your present model car, the new model indisputably does not make your present model slower, although it is now not as fast as the new model.

    Once we have the internet of things and a toilet is connected to it, will we get complaints about slow flushing? I really don’t want obsolescence of my toilet, toasters, or cat….

    1. toldjaso

      AT&T charges a premium for keeping your land line not converted to satellite. This if use of force by *finance* of the Rentiers By Divine Right. The System Sucks.

    2. hunkerdown

      The car still has to pull an OS (trailer), which is now heavier and has more drag and rolling resistance to deal with (newer OS → more features → more tasks → more memory reserved, but not more memory → less memory for user tasks and GPU buffers → more task thrashing). An older phone won’t perform as well pulling a new OS that wasn’t designed with an eye to maintaining performance parity with the old OS on older hardware.

      Android does things a little bit differently — but, sadly, carriers often don’t.

      Of course, any writer who uses “conspiracy theory” as a euphemism for “questioning the Market your Lord God” ought to be hung up on like any other telemarketer. Must be why this one saved it for the end, until after the just-so paeans to the market had been presented and assimilated.

  17. jgordon

    Regardless of current socioeconomic condition, opting out of the market economy early will pay huge dividends in the time when there is no functioning market economy left. And while admittedly anyone can benefit from this choice, as of today it’s the poor who would benefit most considering that the market economy is already in a fairly advanced state of decay and that the lower tiers of society are already grievously suffering by remaining dependent on it.

    I have no doubt that soon the simple need to survive will take various options out of the “impossible”/unthinkable category and return them to the daily life of the people. A requirement and expectation that people grow a significant portion of their own food (the alternative being starvation) regardless of their other activities would be an example.

    1. Katniss Everdeen

      Monsanto concurs. As long as you “grow your own” with their suicide seeds. Just pay the man so that you can “survive.”

  18. diptherio

    Re: Antidote

    Speaking as someone who has been chased down a mountain by a momma Black Bear, let me just say that today’s antidote is utterly terrifying. I almost screamed in fright just seeing that horrid scene reproduced in pixels on my screen. Take my word for it, if you ever come across two little bears sleeping in the woods (or even just one), don’t get our your camera and think, Oh, Yves will love this, get the hell away as fast as possible.

    Seriously, the cubs is cute but the moms is mean. Nice shot though, assuming it was taken with a looooong telephoto.

  19. Doug Terpstra

    Alarming end-of-days links on the tangled web we weave in Ukraine today, esp Paul Craig-Roberts. Following the linked article, he writes, “Does Russia (and Humanity) Have a Future?”

    “…Foreign Affairs, the journal of the Washington foreign policy community … makes a case that the US has such strategic advantage over Russia at his time that a “window of opportunity” exists for the US to remove Russia as a restraint on US hegemony with a preemptive nuclear attack.

    “It is almost certain that Obama is being told that President John F. Kennedy had this window of opportunity and did not use it, and that Obama must not let the opportunity pass a second time.”

    Alas, Obama is no John Kennedy.

  20. Wal-Mart Corporate HQ

    We appreciate John Smith’s efforts to explain the world to you snooty educated people. We share Mr. Smith’s frustration with your intolerance of the traditional American folkways of corporate America. You rich people spend an awful lot of time criticizing the diets of the poor downtrodden people we sell food to. You cannot understand why our customers prefer gummy, viscous industrial products to fresh fruits and vegetables. But as you can see, thanks to Mr. Smith’s explanation, poors don’t need to eat vegetables because they get their dietary fiber from ice cream and cunnilingus.

    1. kareninca

      LOL. There must be some fiber in tattoos, too.
      Yeah, he even admits that he doesn’t eat that mystery slop himself; he is a vegan. But it’s just fine for the poor – not just fine, it’s one of life’s “nice things.”

      1. John Smith

        Excuse me? I use hydrocolloids like guar and xanthan gum when I make veggie burgers and my own peanut and soy milk. They’re effective and cheap thickeners. I happen to be one of those poors you assholes keep insulting.

        1. OIFVet

          I don’t see anyone here insulting poor people except you with your BS. Sorry that you are poor, FWIW I think that even paid trolls ought to earn a living wage. But that’s what happen when you are classified as an independent contractor…

        2. kareninca

          I was a vegan for 17 years, and am still nearly a vegan. I have never bought or used guar or xanthan gum. I have made many a veggie burger, and many a jar of homemade soy milk, without using anything of the sort. You are probably one of five people in this country who actually goes out of his way to eat those things; well, that’s unusual. Everyone else who eats (e.g.) an ice cream bar who sees that sort of thing on the label, thinks “crap, I wish I could afford the real thing.”

          Also, you are now focusing on relatively benign ingredients (the ones you use). The “confectionaries” under discussion also contain high fructose corn syrup and hydrogenated fats; the savory ones have loads of MSG. Do you buy those ingredients to add to your home-cooked meals? I doubt it. There have been some interesting demographic studies in China re MSG; you can get much fatter on the same number of calories, if you add it to your food.

          I recommend that you check out Helen Nearing’s Simple Food for the Good Life (it is in many libraries); it is cheaper to cook vegan food without using that stuff. If you insist on buying and using those ingredients, I urge you to find out where they truly come from; I would bet a lot of them are from China. Unless you are going to also claim that food from China is just swell. At this point I wouldn’t be surprised.

  21. Jim Haygood

    Panama goes Venezuelan:

    President Juan Carlos Varela of Panama was warned a thousand times that implementing emergency price controls after taking power was not a good idea.

    As a new resident, I can confirm that we have already started to see empty shelves in Panamanian supermarkets. The Panamanian government thought it would be a bright idea to label the products that are regulated and part of the program. These are precisely the products that are missing from the shelves.

    While at the supermarket; I saw that the regulated meat had disappeared from its usual place. What they did have, of course, was more expensive meat.


    Econ 101: price controls cause shortages.

    1. hunkerdown

      Sociology 101: Paying attention to the numbers instead of the goods causes goods shortages.

  22. fresno dan

    You Say Poignant, I Say Depressing Mark Weidemaier, Credit Slips. Key sentence: “What has been clear all along, but is now being acknowledged openly, is just how much the rulings in this case have been motivated by pique that Argentina refused to pay money judgments issued by US courts.”
    BNY Mellon wants to keep the money, and its counsel had barely begun to speak when the following exchange took place (p. 40):

    THE COURT: What do you believe should be done with the money?

    MR. SCHAFFER: Your Honor, [I] think consistent with the existing injunctions we should be holding the money pending whatever further proceedings take place here either with the special master or-

    THE COURT: I agree with that. Thank you very much.

    And that was that. Until the very next second, when counsel for the plaintiffs spoke briefly in favor of making BNY Mellon return the money. Whereupon this happened (pp. 42-43):

    THE COURT: Can I interrupt you again. I want to conclude this and get to something else. I would say to you that I would certainly be willing to sign an appropriate order having that money returned. It should be returned. Maybe there will be objections to the order. Obviously, I don’t care. I think the money should be returned. Can we leave it at that?

    Understandably puzzled, BNY Mellon’s counsel objected along the lines of: What now? Which prompted this (P. 43):

    THE COURT: Can you tell me what should be done.

    MR. SCHAFFER: Your Honor, I believe the answer is we hold the money right where it is…

    THE COURT: I’m completely silent because I have nothing to say. Try to work something out that you can agree on, the thing that will create the least problems, the least potential litigation we want to do. Unfortunately, we are in the soup. I can’t help that…

    So, to sum up: Keep the money. Return the money. I have nothing to say. Soup.

    What has been clear all along, but is now being acknowledged openly, is just how much the rulings in this case have been motivated by pique that Argentina refused to pay money judgments issued by US courts. The passage quoted by Anna makes this relatively clear; the court links pari passu rights, “whatever they were,” to the need to recognize the rights of judgment holders.
    One thing that strikes in this age of internet transparency…..a lot of judges decisions, not quickly or widely dispersed in past times, but available now to everyone, are going to show our vaunted legal system has feet of clay.

    And as I noted yesterday, it gets very difficult to have laws that contemplate, ameliorate, and anticipate every contingency in business and finance. Its called profit and LOSS – and the US courts shouldn’t be defending the interests of hedge funds because the hedge funds can afford fancy lawyers, and the courts should realize, despite the US being the “indispensable” nation, that the US can’t control everyone on earth…

      1. hunkerdown

        We’ve progressed past kangaroo courts and moved on to soup courts. Soup!

        I hope Argentina will file an emergency request for psychiatric evaluation of Griesa as possibly non compos mentis.

  23. Benedict@Large

    Are the numbers of physicians in the US being restricted? Here are OECD figures.

    OECD Physicians Data
    Practicing physicians per 1,000 population, 2012
    United States ( 2.5)
    OECD ( 3.2)
    Australia ( 3.3)
    Austria ( 4.9)
    Belgium ( 2.9)
    Canada ( 2.5)
    Chile ( 1.7)
    Czech Republic ( 3.7)
    Denmark ( 3.5)
    Finland ( 3.3)
    France ( 3.3)
    Germany ( 4.0)
    Greece ( 6.2)
    Hungary ( 3.1)
    Iceland ( 3.6)
    Ireland ( 2.7)
    Israel ( 3.3)
    Italy ( 3.9)
    Japan ( 2.3)
    Korea ( 2.1)
    Luxembourg ( 2.8)
    Mexico ( 2.2)
    Netherlands ( 3.1)
    New Zealand ( 2.7)
    Norway ( 4.2)
    Poland ( 2.2)
    Portugal ( 4.1)
    Slovak Republic ( 3.4)
    Spain ( 3.8)
    Sweden ( 3.9)
    Switzerland ( 3.9)
    Turkey ( 1.7)
    United Kingdom ( 2.8)

    Similar results (if anything, a bit worse) for up-and-coming Medical students in the queue.

  24. OIFVet

    Verizon’s war on grandfathered unlimited data plans: This really pisses me off. I am on one of these grandfathered unlimited data plans, despite Verizon’s best effort over the past 3.5 years to get me to switch to one of their profit-maximizing data plans. I do not ever come even close to using 4GB in any month, but why should these fuckers change the terms on me retroactively? Well, time to look at the alternatives after 12 years of inflating Verizon’s bottom line. In a sea of bad choices, could anyone point me to the least bad alternative?

    1. hunkerdown

      T-Mobile has never been terrible to me. I pay them and they provide fairly reliable service. I haven’t heard many horror stories about them, either. That said, I don’t travel a lot, and the places you spend your time may or may not be as well-covered as the places I spend my time.

    2. toldjaso

      Kick the habit. If only this would happen *en masse*. Revolt against these “abusive parents”.

  25. Jim Haygood

    “What I said is what I believe,” NJ governor Chris Christie told reporters who asked him about an April radio interview in which he slammed Colorado’s new marijuana law. Ignoring data showing Colorado outranking New Jersey on many social and economic metrics, Christie said in that earlier interview that his state is a better place to live because of Colorado’s legal weed.

    “See if you want to live in a major city in Colorado, where there are head shops popping up on every corner, and people flying into your airport just to get high. To me, it’s not the quality of life we want to have here in the state of New Jersey,” he declared.


    Every day in the police beat column of NJ’s local newspapers, you can read about hapless victims stopped in their cars and arrested for small amounts of cannabis or paraphernalia. Processing this human livestock through the criminal ‘justice’ system keeps a whole superstructure of courts, police, judges, attorneys and jailers in business.

    If Chris Christie thinks NJ whips Colorado’s ass, he is delusional. I’ve spent plenty of time in both states, and it is no freaking contest. In fact, I’m gonna get high right now. Try and stop me, fat Republican slob.

    1. different clue

      Christie was probably just using Colorado as an acoustical sound-reflector to bounce his words out to whatever real prospective audience he hopes to reach. I suspect more and more that only Santorum voters would respond favorably to Christie’s opposition to marijuana and states rights. Also of course the legal enforcement industrial complex and the narco-intelligence industrial complex and the drugmoney laundering industrial complex would also support Christie’s views, also.

      1. hunkerdown

        When I first saw the top-level comment my thoughts went to phased antenna arrays. In other words, this may be Christie liquidating his political capital because the national GOP won’t have him.

        You do raise a good point. How’s organized crime in Jayzie versus the national average? Hurting from the casinos?

  26. S Haust

    Hey, where is Mathbabe when we need her???

    On the article referencing Vineyardsaker with respect to desertions from the Ukrainian Army,
    it appears that the, ummm, Ukrainian administration, SBU, junta, whatever, may be even more
    incompetent that one would suppose, given, ummm, “Western” propaganda. And on a side note,
    I’m not so sure about NC readership as well.
    If the order of the numbers given in the letter from V.O. Nalyvaichenko is correct, then the
    “catastrophic increase… in the number of deserters” is not 47% but is 88%. This is a very
    basic mistake in arithmetic and surely the head of the Ukrainian Security Service (and maybe
    a few others) ought to do better than this if they think they are going to win a war.

    1. toldjaso

      This is why BigBully needs its “nuclear first strike” to make the point Zbig can’t sell.

  27. different clue

    That Bloomberg kudzu article site was very clanky and cranky and slow/fitfull loadingly hard to read. But nevermind.
    I lived in Knoxville, Tenn. till age 15 so I remember kudzu. We were all impressed with its power and talents, for sure. Since its here now anyway, we’d be better off to regard it as a challenge and an opportunity rather than just a hateful invasive.
    Shurtleff and Aoyagi wrote a book about its many uses and values and meanings in East Asia, called The Book Of Kudzu.
    We could adopt some of those uses here.
    Engineer-author Charles Wilber of Alabama uses kudzu as a key ingredient in the compost mixture he uses to feed and fertilize his high-performing tomatoes. He has written a book about it.
    Bamboo is supposed to be “the fastest growing plant in the world”. What would happen if you planted kudzu in among bamboo? Which would outgrow the other? Which would die trying? I bet you could suck down and bio-fix a lot of skycarbon with a properly managed planting of mixed bamboo and kudzu.
    Here’s something I would like to see pond-owning landscapers try in the Deep South, where water hyacinth is a problem. Plant kudzu at the edge of the water-body covered over with water hyacinth and train the kudzu vines out over the water hyacinth. Would so much kudzu grown over the water hyacinth as to submerge the water hyacinth mats with the very weight of the overlying kudzu vines? Would the water hyacinth race to grow new plants in the spaces between the vines and sunken mats? What if you let kudzu grow out over the water hyacinth just short of actually sinking it by its own weight? Could you reel the kudzu vines back in to shore and would they drag in the water hyacinth with them? Thereby facilitating harvest of both at once for feeding livestock or feedstocking industrial-scale compost making operations or etc.? I hope somebody gives this a try.

  28. Veri

    Comparing the USPS and Amazon was shoddy work. The USPS is restricted by Congress in engaging in certain business activities – such as postal banking. The USPS is also mandated, by law, to fund 75 years of pensions (by a Republican Congress around 2005 and for employees who haven’t even been born yet).

    Amazon is not.

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