Links 8/23/14

Resistance Taking Sting Out of Top Malaria Drug Online WSJ. Bigger than ebola, though less dramatic.

‘The war on cancer may NEVER be won’: Cure ‘could be impossible’ because the disease is so highly evolved Daily Mail

Investors Just Poured A Ton Of Money Into US Stocks Business Insider. Handy chart.

Here’s what it will take to trigger the next stock market correction Reuters. Early is wrong….

TPP: The “Trade” Deal that Could Inflate Your Healthcare Bill Eyes on Trade

Argentina slams U.S. judge as ‘imperialist,’ peso halts rout Reuters

Sovereign Chicken Credit Slips

Few homeowners expected to benefit from Bank of America’s $16.65B settlement AP. Film at 11.

Americans’ Satisfaction With Job Security at New High Gallup

More Than A Thousand Stood Under Heat & Sun For Free Food In Miami CBS (rich).

Nobel guru fears it may be nigh impossible to stop deflation Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, Telegraph

Jackson Hole

How Jackson Hole became such an important economic talking shop Economist.  #JacksonHole; streaming coverage.

Yellen debuts with sense of balance FT

‘Robot Overlords’ Job-Stealing Exaggerated: Jackson Hole Paper Bloomberg

A first for Jackson Hole — protesters are here, and they don’t want rate hikes Market Watch. Actually, what they don’t want is an economy that’s regulated by throwing people out like garbage of work (read to the end).

A Theory on Long-Term Economic Trends and a Sudden Crash Times. Jackson Hole. “[A]lternative nonmarket uses of time.” Heaven forfend!

The rise of ‘Obama Inc.’ The Hill (KK). David Plouffe goes to work for Uber. “Former Obama officials have not shied away from taking jobs that put them at odds with former allies on the left.” Boy, that came out of nowhere!

Hillary Clinton’s Foreign Policy Views Don’t Matter The Diplomat

The case against school vouchers in one blistering court ruling
LA Times

Israeli teenagers: Racist and proud of it Haaretz. Your tax dollars at work, funding strategic hate management.

2700 Scholars Boycott UI; Trustees to Meet Tomorrow; Salaita’s Teaching Evaluations Superb; Philosopher Cancels Prestigious Lecture (Updated) (Updated Again) Crooked Timber


How The US Helped ISIS Grow Into a Monster Mother Jones. On policy, whenever you read “X has failed,” ask yourself from whose perspective X has succeeded. Interests matter!

Syria: U.S. Intelligence For Syrian Air-Force Bombing Moon of Alabama

Sunnis Quit Iraq Government Talks After 73 Shot Dead at Mosque Bloomberg

In Iraq, ISIS is Not the United States’ Only Enemy The Diplomat

From Assad to ISIS, a tale of Syrian resistance Waging Nonviolence

Inside the secret mission to rescue U.S. hostages in Syria; might future attempts be undertaken? ABC. Hagel: “This operation, by the way, was a flawless operation, but the hostages were not there.”

Don’t Look Now But Libya Is Falling Apart Foreign Policy


Ukraine crisis: Russia aid convoy ‘invades Ukraine’ BBC

U.S. condemns Russian aid convoy into Ukraine, threatens more sanctions AP

The significance of the Russian decision to move the humanitarian convoy into Novorussia Vineyard of the Saker

In Aspen, a near consensus on Russia emerges Daily Star

Imperial Collapse Watch

Why the Cowpens Saga Matters The Diplomat

Pentagon launches investigation into Marine general’s alleged retaliation WaPo

China Races Ahead of the Pack as Bike Sharing Goes Viral Bloomberg. Invented by anarchists in Amsterdam in 1965.

Epic Drought in West Is Literally Moving Mountains Scientific American

Global warming slowdown ‘could last another decade’ BBC

Preserving the Person in the Emerging Kingdom of Technological Force The Frailest Thing

Taney loses to Chicago, 6-5 Suburban Guerilla. A Philly feel good story, but feel good nonetheless.

Damn. Just plain DAMN. Can anyone on Long Island come to this dog’s rescue? Angry Bear

Antidote du jour; winter is coming:


See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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About Lambert Strether

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


  1. Ditto

    Re War on cancer

    The article title is a mix of hyperbole and undue pessimism

    In short, “never” is a long time and hubris based pessimism isn’t scientific research.

    I don’t know anyone today or even in the 90s when I got my degree (as opposed to may be the 70s) who thought cancer would be eliminated before it even happens,which seems to be point of the article.

    The real goal of biomedical research (eg immuno-therapies) is not to end the chance that cancerous cells will still exist. Not in the near term. The goal is ti prevent cancerous cells from killing the host organism.

    There are diseases we treat now that we used to die from. It is not that those diseases stopped being deadly and in the vast majority of cases ,stopped existing. Its that we learned to treat them.

    That is the more accurate way of seeing how we will win against cancer.

    1. Johann Sebastian Schminson

      “Cancer” needs to be redefined. While the basic definition of the disease is sound, the actual causes, mechanisms, pathologies, and treatments are all over the map. “Cancer” should not be considered a single, well defined ailment, as doing so doesn’t hold any promise for the development of treatment for specific diseases currently lumped together under the term.

      1. Ditto

        No one following the science research believes that cancer is one disease and its not a widely held belief

        This article trades on the belief systems (seen in this thread) of the willfully ignorant with an. agenda

        We are also talking about a definition of a phrase from the 70s

        What serious person goes back decades like that to understand modern reseevch

        Thus site is becoming increasing bizarre in what it covers

          1. Ditto

            From what I can tell below conflating the need for the research with a critique of capitalism and spirituality arguments about stress

            Its like the equally strange criticism that Lambert made about Ebola v Hepatitis research without defending it. The numbers just didn’t back the attack. Maybe if the argument were malaria v Hepatitis I could see that

            As it was, there was a dismissal which others bought into as a symbol of capitalism that made little sense

            I believe the left needs to be engaged strongly in science and technology without falling into doctrine like the right does

            That means making Arguments that pass the smell test

            There seems to be a serious anti science contingent that conflates a discussion about the horrors of capitalism with denying the value of research by posting questionable positions as far as the science is concerned

            1. Klassy

              I think you need to reread Trish’s comment. There is nothing in it that gives credence to your assertion that it is “anti-science”.
              She is correct that the bulk of cancer research funding goes primarily to treatment and has much less to say about environmental factors (they have a lot more to say about behavioral factors of course.)
              And honestly, I don’t believe this is because “they” want to keep us sick. It is just more profitable to focus on treatment.
              I think ignoring the wages of capitalism is anti science.
              Some recommended reading:

              1. Ditto

                1. I didn’t single out any statement. How did you arrive logically speaking at deciding that I misunderstood one?

                2. What your tangent logically speaking have to do with the article’s claims or the linking to it? The answer is nothing.

                3. There are some huge breakthroughs going on in cancer research right now (immuno therapies, targeted treatments,new means of detection, methods to address metastatic spread etc), . I’ve been following this for over a decade. That’s where the science is , which is again is a separate point from whether spending is sufficient and one which directly contradicts the article , which again is the subject matter that I’m discussing versus the delays agendas outside the article .

                I just think some of you seem in cable of discussing the science so you stated talking about other things

    2. Linda Amick

      A cancer cure in our capitalist system would never be a goal. The goal is growth of cancer research and treatments to increase the profits of all associated business concerns.

      1. trish

        and never discussed (and therefore addressed) is the huge and continuing environmental assault likely linked to many cancers.
        Cancer of course a varying mix ( particular cancers, individuals and ) of genetics, environmental triggers, etc, but it’s so obvious that you can’t dump this much toxic sh*t in the environment without negative repercussions on the organisms in the environment.
        A cancer reduction in our capitalist system cannot happen without addressing this and it aint going to happen. Indeed corporations with our govt’s aid have been dumping and spewing and spraying (for years and years) more of our toxic sh*t globally. The issue of treatment more profitable than cure just another arm of the monster of capitalist profit for the relative few and screw everybody else.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          That’s a great point, Trish.

          We have to address the root cause…environmental degradation, stress from work, unhappiness due to wealth inequality, etc.

          It’s like when a few people corner the society’s wealth and many are jobless, we should confront it with a wealth tax, and not by cutting down more trees to grow the GDP so that some wealth might trickle down to the jobless.

          Go GDP!!!

          Go government spending!!!

          1. trish

            stress from work, stress and unhappiness due to wealth inequality, etc. This has got to be a major factor (in addition to environmental assault) in cancer, autoimmune illness, who knows what other ailments (stress seems clearly linked in research and financial struggle is a big stressor). And then add the squeeze-for-profit health care rationed according to ability to pay…
            All those hidden costs in addition to direct costs and subsidies to the elite born by everyone else.

            1. Banger

              There seems to be a growing consensus that 80 per cent of all illness, including cancer is caused by stress.

          2. Propertius

            We have to address the root cause…environmental degradation, stress from work, unhappiness due to wealth inequality, etc.

            And, of course, increased lifespan due to the successful treatment of all those ailments that used to kill us before we could live long enough to develop a fatal malignancy.

    3. Katniss Everdeen

      War on Poverty.

      War on Drugs.

      War on Terrorism.

      War on Cancer.

      The “survey” appears to say that if you want less of something, it’s best not to declare war on it.

        1. Jim Haygood

          Instead, we have a War on Sound Money. This metastasizes the FIRE (Finance, Insurance, Real Estate) sector as it goes into securitization overdrive to exploit the Fed’s Sequential Bubbles economic policy.

      1. fresno dan

        I say “surrender with honor” ….or just surrender with disgrace – the important thing is to flee!!!

    4. vidimi

      cancer charities are the charities i least like giving to…with the exception of military charities.

      it’s like throwing money down a well.

    5. gregory

      off topic appeal…..
      Within the last week or so, an article was referenced on this blog concerning the ebola epidemic and
      the lack of basic hospital/epidemicological supplies in Africa. Can anybody supply a link to this
      piece or some or some other reference to the organization or government making this appeal?


  2. tongorad

    “Now, with unemployment down to nearly 6%, Americans are finally showing more confidence in their job security — in fact, more confidence than at any point in Gallup’s trend.

    Rugged Individualism Uber Alles, it seems. Depressing beyond measure.

    1. wbgonne

      The New Normal taking root in the American brain. Serfs are us. Now we’re getting used to the idea.

    2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Contrast that with the next link, 3000 under the sun for food, and one is immediately impressed with the success of system’s propaganda, sorry, ability to communicate.

      1. psychohistorian

        Ah, but that it was communication and not outright manipulation. There are no good intentions of the elite reflected in either.

  3. rkka

    So the Anglosphere Foreign Policy Elite & Punditocracy gathered at Aspen to consider Putin.

    ““How can we deter Putin from further aggression in Ukraine and drive up the costs to him while, at the same time, keep the lines open to him on nuclear security, proliferation and Iran?” That’s how Nicholas Burns, a Harvard professor and the group’s director, summed up the discussion in a message after the conference.”

    In other words, how can we enlist Russian government support for our priorities while still stiffing the Russian government on theirs? That was the essence of Hiliary’s ‘Reset’. Why should the Russians want to be played like that again?

    And their ruminations are founded upon 2/3 delusion, 1/3 irrelevancy:

    ” One presenter described Russia’s demographic disaster: A shrinking population; a chronic health crisis that puts Russia between Tanzania and Angola in male life expectancy; a dearth of entrepreneurship, so that the nation ranks below Alabama in patents awarded over the past 10 years.”

    In actuality, Russia’s population has been growing since 2009 when one includes immigration, and 2013, births exceeded deaths, for the first time since 1991.

    In actuality, Russia’s health crisis has been receding. Russia’s male life expectancy was indeed between Tanzania’s and Angola’s. Fifteen years ago. When FreeMarketReformers were running the place. Since Putin became president, male life expectancy has risen 8 years, and is now significantly higher than Angola’s/Tanzania’s.

    And one wonders how many patents were awarded in Russia while FreeMarketReformers were running the place, when male life expectancy had dropped to 57 years and deaths were exceeding births by a million a year.

    1. Banger

      The conference Ignatius describes was a chance for the various power-elite factions to agree to some minimum standard. The “accuracy” of their assessments has nothing to do with anything–the conference is about posturing and working out compromises in policy since Washington is and has been deeply divided on National Security Issues. Ignatius, who is the guy you want to read if you want to know the dominant thinking of the realists within the National Security State who seem to have won the battle with neocons at the conference. The consensus seems to mean the USG will go slow, keep pressure on Russia, but avoid destabilizing Russia and oppose and undermine Putin from within through the usual activity of funding “liberals” and dissidents in Russia but without any great push–in summation they’ve agreed to kick the can down the road and see what events unfold. My guess is that many of them feel they’ve achieved the most important goal–to create a potential enemy that can be allowed to be left simmering until it is needed while Washington turns its attention to, once again, the much easier to demonize ISIL.

      Interestingly, there was some emphasis on eliminating corruption in Ukraine which adds an interesting wrinkle–what can that mean? Since when has the U.S. seriously tried to fight corruption in any client state? After all, U.S. foreign policy depends on being able to pay-off oligarchs to do their bidding.

      1. trish

        “Interestingly, there was some emphasis on eliminating corruption in Ukraine.” That is one of our standard lines, isn’t it?
        neoliberals used “corruption” in the Ukraine (by using the original Ukrainian protests against corruption of their oligarchs- theirs just one of the rapacious oligarchies we helped usher in when the Soviet Union disintegrated) to engineer the coup to put in their own oligarchs. How is that interesting.

      2. Jackrabbit

        Window-dressing. Neolibcons are in full control. The article ignores or whitewashes the real issues and overstates minor differences. Group-think and TINA prevail.

        “many of them feel they’ve achieved the most important goal–to create a potential enemy that can be allowed to be left simmering”
        In your ‘Deep State’-centric view MIC funding is all-important. But the neolibcons are leading the charge and their aim is not chaos but a re-making of the world that favors their interests. That they manipulate the Deep State doesn’t seem to EVER enter into your calculations. Why is that?

        Washington doesn’t need to turn its attention to ISIL at all. What are you smoking? They are turning the attention of the public.

        And this was a Foreign Policy establishment meeting – so your ‘National Security State’ bogey man isn’t apt. Oh sure there may be some relation/interaction but they are not the same thing.

        1. Jackrabbit

          Locomotive or Tracks?

          Which is more important? The locomotive is raw power. Children love it. Lots of steam and a loud whistle! But adults know that the tracks dictate how this power is used. And track paths are a big determinant of real estate value. ‘Insiders’ (neolibs?) who are close to track planners can make a fortune!

          To some extent, these planners are guided by landscapes, just as neocons are guided by friendly and hostile interests, ethnic and sectarian divides, etc. But when you are powerful enough, you can build tunnels and bridges (or color revolutions?) to overcome obstacles.

          I’m not saying that the ‘Deep State’/Security State isn’t important in its own right, but making it the focus undermines the most important issues.

        2. Banger

          I’ve noticed a bunch of stories in the MSM about ISIL being a bigger threat than AQ within the Homeland. That would mean that they’re going to spend more money on the National Security State. I think it goes without saying that the public is the ultimate victim of the Orwellian State. I don’t really get what you are objecting to in what I said other than the background fact that I believe our oligarchy is made up of several multiple cliques with differing agendas who come together over some basic issues, like the general strategy of tension within and without the U.S. My perception of the ruling elites is that, within the agreed upon boundaries those people are very competitive and ruthless in their quest for power and influence.

          1. Jackrabbit

            When you talk about Realists and say that ‘Washington is divided’ you make it seem like there is a real debate going on. IMO this is misleading. Even in this article, it is not difficult to see that so-called ‘realists’ are only lesser forms of ‘hawks’. There is no real acknowledgement of Russia as sovereign, only softer and harsher ways of reaching the goal of Russian submission.

            And what, pray tell, can NC readers and the general public – DO – about the Deep State/National Security State (which are really different aspects of the same thing)???? [Answer: little to nothing] We have no means of influencing The Deep State. To return to my locomotive-tracks analogy: we need to take back our government who, along with those they appoint, are the one’s that approve and direct the track-laying.

            So its much more useful to focus on things like:

            >CORRUPTION: neolibcon policies of Bush and Obama;

            > REFORM: taking money out of politics;

            > PRESSURE: creating alternate economic structures (like coops) that allow ordinary people to make a decent living and while removing )to some extent) their participation in a corrupt system;

            > CULTURE: making reforms possible and making them stick;

            > etc.

            1. Banger

              All of them are united in supporting Empire–they differ in methods and whether they want to encourage a relatively open society or one that is more authoritarian. Both, though, favor oligarchy and are solidly anti-democratic.

    2. trish

      “In other words, how can we enlist Russian government support for our priorities while still stiffing the Russian government on theirs?” boiled down further: How can we make more money for our oligarchs.

      Keeping “the lines open” wasn’t just about “security” but “continuing to engage Russia economically.”
      “participants focused increasingly on positive steps the U.S. could take to complement the negative pressure of sanctions.” Negative pressure presumably includes that coming from US, EU companies re their profits.
      “one participant suggested that the U.S. lead an international reconstruction program for the Donbas region of eastern Ukraine.”
      Hmmm…Is that going to be Ukrainian businesses profiting to help Ukrainians?

    3. Doug Terpstra

      Insightful corrections. One more: the key question should read, “How can we deter Putin from further aggression in Ukraine … when the only aggressors are the US and its Neo-Nazi minions, targeting civilians in an ethnic cleansing campaign?”

      1. Brindle

        Ray McGovern has a helpful piece up. Points out that lead NYT Iraq War propagandist Michael R. Gordon is reprising his role in the Ukraine conflict:

        —Gordon, who never did find those Weapons of Mass Destruction that he assured us were in Iraq, now writes: “The Russian military has moved artillery units manned by Russian personnel inside Ukrainian territory in recent days and was using them to fire at Ukrainian forces, NATO officials said on Friday.”—

        1. Banger

          Today there is not even the fig leaf of journalism in the MSM–they are all political operatives representing one or another faction within the Power Elite/Deep State. If we, on what is left of the left, can do anything positive it is to deconstruct the canard that MSM reporters and editors are even remotely objective (whatever that means).

          1. Ulysses

            We have really lost the muckraking spirit entirely in mainstream journalism. There are still plenty of fine investigative reporters writing every day. It’s just that they can’t make a living out of it in the court stenographer dominated MSM. The blogs, or minor publications, in which they publish reach mostly self-selected audiences of like-minded people.

            A great way to see how this is a problem in our society is to consider the TPP and TAFTA. Yves Smith, Lori Wallach, and other intrepid investigators have put out enough disturbing facts– about this agenda for tighter global corporate control– to set everyone’s head on fire. Yet 9 out of 10 people in the street haven’t even heard about it!

            All the elites have to do, when confronted with questions about the TPP on the record, is to reply with vague platitudes and they know that the corporate-owned media will never call them out. We are turning back into a sort of pre-modern culture where rumors swirl everywhere among the peasantry, but actual knowledge of what exactly is going on up at the castle is quite rare.

  4. trish

    re How The US Helped ISIS Grow Into a Monster

    our monster becomes terror monster to bomb, our thug becomes thug for regime change…who to arm…who to bomb…who to entertain with lavish State dinner…who to overthrow… gosh, our fight for global democracy can be so confusing.

  5. Katniss Everdeen

    RE: TPP: The “Trade” Deal that Could Inflate Your Healthcare Bill Eyes on Trade

    ” Leaked draft TPP texts – an intellectual property chapter, investment chapter and healthcare annex – contain expansive rules that would constrain the ability of the U.S. government to reduce medicine prices. Getting these terms into the TPP was a key objective of large U.S. pharmaceutical corporations that stand to reap monopoly profits from expansive patent terms and restrictions on government cost containment efforts. This incentive may explain why pharmaceutical corporations have lobbied Congress for the TPP more than any other industry.”

    Setting aside the questionable contention that there actually ARE any ongoing “[US government] [pharmaceutical] “cost containment efforts,” this incentive “MAY” explain the barrage of lobbying for TPP?????


    If there are other possible explanations, let’s hear them. Otherwise at least have an iota of journalistic “integrity” and call a spade a spade.

    1. lambert strether

      Public Citizen has been doing the heavy lifting on trade for years, and without being backed by any squillionaires.

      Your strictures are misplaced.

        1. Yves Smith

          Public Citizen has had the goods on the trade deals from NAFTA onward. For you to accuse them of cowardice shows that you don’t know them or their work.

          And they are not journalists. They are a policy shop.

  6. diptherio

    Re: Here’s what it will take to trigger the next stock market correction

    After explaining in detail while stocks are not currently over-priced, Kaletsky destroys his entire argument with this gem:

    What level of valuations will be high enough to make the market vulnerable? This question is virtually impossible to answer. But we can be fairly certain that when the market does reach this critical level, nobody will be aware of it — including me.


    Don’t worry: the market isn’t over-priced…of course, if it were I wouldn’t know it…but trust me anyway.

    Where to they find these jokers?

    1. MikeNY

      “Kaletsky is unduly pessimistic.”

      — ‘Helium’ Abby Cohen, Senior US Investment Strategist, Goldman Sachs

      1. fresno dan

        “We can’t recognize bubbles when we see them”
        Green Allenspats, maestro, noted raconteur, world renowned money master, and developer of the wet/dry Baltic cardboard box men’s jockey short shipping futures CDO cubed index, and taker of BUBBLE baths…..or was that taking a bath from bubbles??? – oh no, that not him – its you!!!

    1. OIFVet

      Some of us are blessed with genes that make us resistant to malaria, though at the cost of a mild anemia. Thalassemia and G6PD deficiency provide natural resistance, and we Mediterraneans are happy to offer ourselves as sources of anti-malarial genetic material :)

      1. Johann Sebastian Schminson

        Isn’t Thalassemia itself a disease? I was under the impression that it was similar to sickle cell anemia, although I could be way off.

        1. OIFVet

          It can be; most people are just carriers: “Thalassemia minor occurs if you receive the faulty gene from only one parent. Persons with this form of the disorder are carriers of the disease. Most of the time, they do not have symptoms.”

          G6PD is a bit different, some foods and medicines can kill. I had a bad quinine reaction as a child. I eat all legumes, including the dreaded Fava beans, and if there are effects then they are imperceptible. Or perhaps I am killing myself slowly with them; either way there are some foods I am not willing to give up in the name of long life, legumes, coffee and tea, and red wine being at the top of my list to enjoy.

          But hey, no malaria for me, so it all balances out.

          1. Johann Sebastian Schminson

            Outside coffee and tea, I do remember a certain movie character who craved Chianti and Fava beans along with his main course.

            ; )

  7. diptherio

    Too bad those Jackson Protestors don’t have much of a clue. CPD is good on some stuff, but not on understanding macro, apparently. You would think that it might bother them that they are arguing on the same side as the Wall Street speculators? How’s that QE worked out so far for us working folks, CPD? Why do you think more of the same will help? We need to dispatch an emergency economics education team to their offices, stat.

    1. MikeNY

      My reaction, too.

      BTW, the Barbara Cartland romances are great. I’m on my third. Feeling a little better…

      1. diptherio

        The best literary pick-me-up, for my money, is English as She is Spoke. Guaranteed to put you in hysterics. It’s like super high-grade comedy crack…romance novels just don’t do it for me, but every time I even think “porkshop keeper” or “lochsmith” I can’t help but start to chuckle (doing it right now).

        1. MikeNY

          I’m kidding about Dame Barbara, dip. A lil campy humor. Not kidding about the need for escapism, tho — reading Dickens’s Dombey & Son, which is hilarious, and a tonic.

          Thanks for the book tip — I’ll check it out.

  8. jrs

    Hillary Clinton’s foreign policy views don’t matter. Maybe but pretty bad article.

    It argues Obama winnning over McCain means foreign policy views don’t matter? But people voted for Obama in part on thinking he would end the endless wars. People were tired of war (esp Iraq), Of course like all things Obama this was pure illusion, but nontheless.

    Meanwhile while foreign policy views “don’t matter” to whatever the American electorate is, only the economy and jobs do, apparently they don’t notice that all their money is spent on endless interventions, while we can’t have nice things. We’ll be going on 8 years (!!!) of a never ending recession (and never ending war) and they’ll still think D.C. cares about their job prospects because it makes some noises in the presidential election. And while Ferguson riots the only thing their president and congress seem to focus on is bombing Iraq extensively yet again (although of course this doesn’t actually have congressional approval except in that silence is consent). Of course with an American electorate portrayed the way that one is, I’m not sure police brutality registers as an issue either.

    Empire is undemocratic. Millions of Iraqis suffer the mess the U.S. has made, Libyans, Ukranians, Afghan weddings, etc.. While the supposed people in whose name the pathological ruling class that has created thsee disasters acts (haha – yea right) can’t be bothered to say anything but “meh” about it. And all the people of the world who it is inflicted on have no vote in it.

    1. Katniss Everdeen

      My first thought was that this article reads like it was written by a fifth-grader who left his “essay” homework until the last minute.

      Could it possibly be that, after decades, there are American “voters” who cannot connect perpetual war with “middle class” economic devastation? That it makes no sense that, while we can’t “afford” anything from food stamps to infrastructure domestically, we have unlimited funds for murder and mayhem abroad because it somehow improves the lot of these here United States?

      But then I remembered that there are some “voters” who still think the only thing they have to worry about is whether a same-sex couple gets married in a state 2000 miles away from their own. Because Christian.

      And then I’m not so sure the fifth-grader isn’t on to something.

      1. Whine Country

        “…there are American ‘voters’ who cannot connect perpetual war with ‘middle class’ economic devastation.”

        I hate war as much or more than anyone, perpetual or not. But I cannot let your statement go unchallenged. You think we have employment problems now. The military is the size it is principally because there is no legitimate alternative employment for the vast majority of those employed by our war machine. Two of my three children (both college graduates), their wives and six of my grandchildren, would be financially devastated and transferred from barely middle class to poverty instantly were they to lose their “jobs”. Believe me, they are not alone. In this regard, we have evolved in the direction of North Korea. There the military is the place to work if you want to be able to support yourself (three hots and a cot as the saying goes). Just as with North Korea, the destruction of our economy creates demand for “jobs” in the military. In the Viet Nam era where I lived, virtually no one volunteered to serve. Women and gays, like the vast majority of others did everything in their power to avoid being in the military, including leaving the country and becoming criminals. Those who enlisted did so because the thought they could cut a better deal than those who were drafted. Yet today there is no draft and there is no shortage of volunteers, even those who would volunteer (and as another poster said the other day, relish the idea) to go into combat. As a combat veteran who was shot at many times and unfortunately hit once, my position has not changed over the years, except to the extent that I now would consider doing more to avoid the draft if the situation arose. But yet today’s youth keep “volunteering” to serve. With all due respect, I think you have it backwards: The destruction of the middle class is the cause of the surge in “voluntary” military service and not the effect. And, without the necessary “volunteers”, there would be no opportunity for whoever is driving the bus to fight unwanted wars whenever they feet like it. At the end of the day, the military, draft or no, is essentially unchanged. The career force, cadre or lifers, if you want to use the term we used, use their tenure to assure that they are as far away as possible from the most lethal areas in those rare circumstances that they have no choice but to be in a war zone. The vast majority (and I mean very vast) of those who are killed or injured are conscripted soldiers. The only difference between my era and now is that ours was in your face drafting that conscripted us. Now it is an economy with greatly reduced opportunity for young people that conscripts them. IMO that is a distinction without a difference.

        1. Katniss Everdeen

          “Whine” Country indeed.

          So, you really, really “hate” war, but unless the US continues forever to manufacture reasons to murder foreigners and demolish their countries, your children might be without “jobs” and in “poverty”???? And, in a bad “economy,” it’s acceptable to murder someone else’s children since YOUR children have got to make a living SOMEHOW???

          I don’t know what is more pathetic. That you believe what you say or that you’re willing to actually write it down.

          With all “due” respect, which is to say none, how does it feel to be owned so completely that you are actually justifying war as your family’s ONLY road to economic “prosperity?” Your owners must be raising a glass to your willing subjugation to and defense of their endless killing for power and profit scheme. Because, of course, what else can you DO?

            1. Antifa

              Our enlisted troops only have McJobs.

              One fourth of America’s enlisted troops are on food stamps. Many military families depend on food banks to feed themselves, and a great many enlistees are in perpetual hock to payday lenders who charge interest rates approaching 4000% APR.

              All you need do to enjoy this enviable lifestyle is agree to go kill poor people overseas, while risking coming back in a few years maimed for life physically and mentally, or merely dead. If you come back needing medical or psychological repair, the VA has 18-month waiting lists for every appointment. If you’re a female enlistee, you can pretty well count on being raped during your time in uniform. Female troops in Iraq and Afghanistan only go to the latrine in groups, and carrying their .45 service pistols. For a damn good reason.

              The majority of homeless men in America are former enlisted troops, most of them in need of mental health services. The suicide rate for former troops remains four times higher than for the civilian population. Troops kill themselves while in uniform at a rate that has the Pentagon alarmed enough to order them not to do that. It’s all part of being all you can be. The part recruiters don’t tell you about.

              The ancient Romans handled enlistees in their Legions with more honor — the enlistment period was for 25 years but throughout those years you got regular access to bath houses, whore houses, exercise and training facilities, regular decent meals, immediate medical care at all times, and some good farmland or a small bag of gold coins when you mustered out. If you made it through, you got permission to marry at last, and Roman citizenship if you didn’t already have it. The odds of surviving 25 years of fighting were about even. Of course, they used to do stuff like execute every tenth trooper in line if a cohort showed weakness in battle, but hey — enlisting is gambling in any age. The wager is your sanity, your body, and your life.

              We have enough poor people in America that we can discharge our enlistees after just a few years to let them try to find civilian work when all they’ve been trained to do is kill people and blow stuff up.

              Those are marketable skills for the few who haven’t lost their taste for violence. The one career benefit of a military McJob is that you might get to join the good old boys at some podunk police department like Ferguson, Missouri after your military stint.

              And then you get to shoot poor people right here in America.

          1. hunkerdown

            Someone’s got a self-interested dimension there and a bit of what I’ve heard called “provisional living”. There is truth to be found in the last three sentences of Whine Country’s comment, though. I believe there is a qualitative difference between “we were just doing as we were told” vs. “we were just doing as we were required in order to be fed”. The whole blackmail by way of basic needs thing really does exist, and I hope you would be more respectful and observant of that moral complexity rather than go full bourgeois and claim that reality is optional.

            The reality that other people will beat you, starve you, torture you and kill you for noncompliance is a cultural reality, but that’s the culture on which the world’s distributional systems are built and it’s a very jealous culture, and I think you should be utterly ashamed of completely disregarding the facts that WC has laid out just to get the knife in.

          2. optimader

            The vast allocation of resources to unproductive offensive MIC programs is precisely the reason the middle class has been gutted and we are in perpetual economic purgatory. This economic distortion utterly destroys capital, wastes human and material resources. Reallocating these misused resources to real value creation and issues like foodstamps and minimum wage become irrelevant.
            Pretty simple really.

          3. Yves Smith

            This is a real misrepresentation of what Whine Country wrote.

            I don’t know what burr you have up your ass on this topic, but it does not give you the right to launch off-base attacks on other commenters.

          4. Whine Country

            Chill out Kat. And learn how to read. Nothing I said is intended to “justify” war. As always, your emotions get the better of you. First, my sons flew C-130s in the war zones. Probably the most dangerous mission for the AF in today’s world. They were armed with Baretta 45s that were never used even though their planes returned often with bullet holes. As far as missions are concerned, among other things, they flew millions of tons of food and other supplies into dangerous areas for consumption by locals. And there was that one time my oldest son flew a seriously wounded marine to Ramstein AFB for the purpose of saving his life. I stand behind every word I said and you are, as is too often the case, all to eager to shoot the messenger. Day in and day out you post with the intention attacking others in order to show us your true wit and genius. Thanks, but no thanks. As far as the other posters claiming that the military is paid poorly now the issue is, compared to who. While they may not be keep pace with the typical NC commenter like you, they are paid far more than the average worker in the private sector when all is included. I told you my thoughts about war and if you think I am a not sincere you can kiss my ass. They work for the military solely because they cannot get a job in private sector in their occupation. Finally, you no doubt were either at the time (I have no idea of your age) or subsequently one who supported the elimination of the draft. Let me tell you in cold hard numbers what that means to our economy. In two years of conscripted service, including service in the war zone in combat, I earned approximately $6,000. That’s $3,000 per year. An E-4 (my rank) today makes just under $30,000 per year. That’s 10 times what I was paid! And before everyone says, wow that’s not much consider that that does not include housing which is either provided or paid for in addition. Yes, that does not compare to the typical NC reader. But you are the one that is complaining about the magnitude of the defense budget and its impact on our middle class. Golly, a grunts pay has gone up 10 times and the cost is killing our economy. Well it went up 10 times because we no longer ask our young men and women to serve their country. Instead, we offer them a career because there are no better opportunities out there. For a long time NC was a place were serious and timely issues were discussed and I enjoyed it. Now it is dominated by a clique that just likes to chat with they buds and listen to themselves talk. When you attack others personally, you accomplish nothing more than stroking your own ego. Like Jack Nicolson said in A Few Good Men, You want the truth? You can’t handle the truth. No doubt you will find a way to claim that my quoting Mr. Nicholson is proof of my love of war. Tell me this Kat, if you are serious about trying to address my points, why did my generation do everything they could to avoid the draft and combat, even to the point of breaking the law, and yet we can now get whatever number we need to “volunteer” for service. If I am wrong about that, address the issue and not the person. People like you are what I like least about NC and, although its been fun, I think I’m ready to move on.

        2. Lord Koos

          I can’t agree with the premise that the military is bloated because it’s some kind of employment service. The military is actually smaller that it would otherwise be because so many functions have been outsourced to private contractors. Privatization is an employment bonanza for workers in the war defense industries.

          Poverty and lack of alternatives does ensure the military a stream of volunteers. Military service can seem like a good choice to young people without much education who would otherwise be unemployed or working at McDonalds — the military seems like a way to get ahead. These volunteers seem to be unaware of the way our vets are treated after they have served and sacrificed. Perhaps if they were, they wouldn’t be so keen to enlist. Even with the economic pressures that help enlistment numbers, the military has still been forced to lower recruitment standards, which is a sign that they are having some difficulty. Another reason they want more robotics and more automation…

        3. lambert strether

          “The only difference between my era and now is that ours was in your face drafting that conscripted us. Now it is an economy with greatly reduced opportunity for young people that conscripts them.” Yep. Because markets.

        4. Johann Sebastian Schminson

          I never cease to be amazed that most people I know who joined the military did so because it was the career option of last resort (the REAL zealots attend the Military Academies), yet they come out wanting to be treated like heroes for “serving.”

          There’s also the very frequent claim to being a “warrior,” made by those who never got any closer to battle than the average US citizen.

          I know two Vietnam-era vets who love to tell war stories, yet neither of them came within 3,000 miles of Vietnam.

            1. Johann Sebastian Schminson

              Exactly. They often don’t tell family or close friends — much less casual social contacts. The real warrior is injured, psychologically. Lots of problems with these folks (suicide, divorce, joblessness, etc.).

          1. OIFVet

            “yet they come out wanting to be treated like heroes for “serving.””

            Just ignore them is my advice. They are either crazy or REMFs, or in search of free booze. I didn’t turn down the free beer on my way home for R&R that the plane passengers were buying for me and other Army people on the flight. Got pretty sauced between Atlanta and Chicago. As to the “warrior” label, that’s a Pentagon PR creation.

        5. different clue

          The mass disemployment problem caused by drastic shrinkage of the armed forces could be solved over time, not quickly, by abolishing Free Trade and restoring Belligerent Protectionism and using that Forcefield of Protection to begin repatriating our Kidnapped Industries in Forced Exile.

      2. TedWa

        Wholeheartedly agree. The parasite on our backs is the war machine that sucks all the new talent in as they (MIC) and the elites have made it a no other choice proposition. When the host (real economy) is dying the only way to survive is to join the growing parasite. Planned? Yes, indeed it is. Vote your conscience or the parasite will make up your mind and conscience for you.

  9. run75441

    Interesting phenomena in Michigan, the gerrymandered Republican controlled (since 1983) State Senate was back in session August 13th coming off their vacation to consider a Wolf hunt November 2014. The lone bill considered was passed along partisan lines 20 -10. Meanwhile, the Michigan infrastructure of bridges, roads, and highways continue to crumble in the wake of a State which refuses to raise taxes nor apply an inflation adder to the present fuel law. But hunting wolves is important for a small group of supporters.

    In September, the other gerrymandered created portion of Michigan government will take up the issue of he Wolf Hunt if it chooses to do so and the House probably will do so. In November, the Wolf Hunt will be on the ballot for Michigan residents to decide. This is not the first time the Michigan legislature has pushed through laws and lately they have been making the laws referendum proof.

    When one referendum rejected the Emergency Manager Law, the legislature passed another bill. With the new minimum wage, the same legislature rejected the initial proposal and came back with their own. The legislature has blocked women from obtaining abortion coverage in their present policies forcing them to buy an additional policy. When eastern Michigan experienced historic flooding in many of their own districts, the Senate did not even consider it.

    This is the best government the Koch Bros. can buy in a swing state

  10. Banger

    The poll of American attitudes about their job security and other on-the-job matters is a bit misleading. First, certain questions about people’s individual well-being are unlikely to get honest answers. Americans are very focused on status and status depends, often, not only on your job but whether you are, in general, doing well. If we ask “how are you” the answer is liable to be “great” or something like that but half the time it isn’t true. We need to live in such a way that we feel good about ourselves or we decline–this is one of the good things about Americans–we do tend to value a positive attitude. Some of the answers may come from lowered expectations–the part about being satisfied with vacation time is humorous–Americans are among the worst in the world in vacation time but 95% don’t have any idea of the comparison with other countries like 95% have no idea of the costs of health-care in other countries since the mainstream media, mainly, refuses to cite those numbers.

    Still the uptick in optimism may not be a bad thing at all. I’m hoping it reflects something real.

    1. wbgonne

      As I said above: The New Normal taking root in the American brain. Serfs are us. Now we’re getting used to the idea.
      And I’ll add this: it seems to me the plutocrats primary mission right now — besides the ubiquitous looting and thieving — is convincing the American People that the Middle Class existence that once defined this nation is no longer possible due to globalism, austerity, and other “irresistible and inevitable” forces. So get used to penury and above all: Don’t worry, be happy.

  11. dearieme

    “This operation, by the way, was a flawless operation, but the hostages were not there.”

    Apart from that, Mr Hagel, did you enjoy the play?

      1. Johann Sebastian Schminson

        Reminds me of an old joke:

        Dr: Mr. Jones, I have some good news, and some bad news — which would you like first?

        Mr. Jones: Give me the good news, first, Doc . . .

        Dr: Well, Mr. Jones, it seems we amputated the wrong leg.

        Mr. Jones: OMG! What’s the bad news?

        Dr. The other leg is getting better.

    1. cnchal

      Words. What they mean depends on who’s talking.

      Inverting the meaning of flawless with a straight face takes a belief anyone paying attention doesn’t comprehend the English language.

      Leadership inaction.

  12. John Zelnicker

    Lambert — You have two link failures: The LA Times story about school vouchers goes to an interesting article about Ferguson, but nothing about vouchers. The link to the Diplomat on the Cowpens Saga goes to an NC search page because it is not an html link.

      1. John Zelnicker

        Thanks. Very interesting. Another example of crapification, among other things. And “virtuous leaders”: yeah, we sure as hell need a few of them.

  13. financial matters

    “”In this trial, U.S. District Judge Lawrence K. Karlton, over the government’s strenuous objection, allowed testimony meant to show that the lenders in the two transactions at issue – Aegis Wholesale Corp. and Greenpoint Mortgage Funding – didn’t care whether information on the applications was true or false.

    William Black, who boasts long academic and regulatory careers, was a key expert witness for the defense, again over Coppola’s objection. Black is an associate professor of economics and law at the University of Missouri, Kansas City, and the “distinguished scholar in residence for financial regulation” at the University of Minnesota’s School of Law.

    His testimony purportedly connected the fraud in the Sacramento case directly to the lenders, and he explained to the jury why the false information on the applications had no bearing on lending decisions.

    “This is the first time that the overwhelming fraud at the banks has been discussed in a criminal courtroom by the person with the greatest expertise on the issue, William Black,” said defense lawyer Toni White after the verdict.

    “Prosecutors have refused to criminally prosecute the elite bankers responsible for the mortgage crisis that decimated our economy. The jurors heard shocking testimony from ‘control fraud’ expert William Black that regular people who got loans they were unable to pay back did not (defraud) the banks. The elite bankers commit the fraud while prosecutors look the other way and prosecute the wrong people.”””

    1. TedWa

      Cool – I hope Bill Black gets very busy testifying at these fraud trials where the wrong parties are on trial.

  14. Ned Ludd

    A friend of mine said that bikes are anarchism, public transport is socialism, and cars are capitalism.

    1. OIFVet

      Well, bike sharing may have been started by anarchists but it has been hijacked by capitalists and turned into a greenwashed rent extraction tool. At least, this is the reality of Chicago’s bike share program. Same with public transport, where the new Ventra card diverts revenue from the CTA and into Rahm’s friends’ bottom line.

      1. Ned Ludd

        Capitalism is resilient since it combines the stick, to beat down dissent, and the carrot of co-option.

        “We wanted to save the city,” said Luud Schimmelpennink, 79, who invented the “White Bicycle Plan” as a member of the anti-establishment Provo movement. “The idea was that with free bikes and no locks, people would stop using the car.”

        Though the plan backfired — the bikes were confiscated by the police — it offered a glimpse of the future. That playful act of defiance has gone mainstream.

        Generosity is infantilized (“playful act of defiance”) while state control and rent extraction becomes the “mainstream”.

        1. Ned Ludd

          Ideally, the state should give everyone a free bike, especially since more bikes → less car traffic → fewer road repairs and less congestion. Well, ideally, bikes would be produced by worker co-ops, who would use a portion of their profits to provide free or discounted bikes to those who could not afford them.

        2. lambert strether

          When play is not infantile and work is a gift, we may be considered to have made some progress….

    2. Johann Sebastian Schminson

      Making a car, or bike, or public transportation system can be, and most always, is, capitalist. In most cases, buying or renting one isn’t.

  15. Jackrabbit

    Was Kajieme another Greenspan victim?

    He was 25 years old. Why is he stealing 2 cans of soda and a doughnut? He would’ve been 18 or 19 in 2008 when the bottom fell out of the economy. We’ve heard that young people have suffered in this post-GRC economy as they are unable to find a good job / start a career.

    We need to learn more about who he was and what brought him to this confrontation. But my guess is that his anger stems from more than just oppressive policing. Its this anger that drove him to confront the police. If he was a ‘victim’ of the GFC, then Obama’s choice of Holder to lead the effort to quell discontent before elections in the fall ensure that justice is done is even more fraught because Holder’s ‘Too Big To Jail’ policy allowed those that were responsible to avoid accountability and minority communities were targeted by sub-prime lenders.

    H O P

    1. Doug Terpstra

      This isn’t fair to Eric Holder. He’s probably busy right now in settlement talks with Brown’s killer Darren Wilson. At least wait until the deferred prosecution agreement is inked and the amount of the fine is announced in that case before passing summary judgment in the Kajieme case.

  16. fresno dan

    “Why are such massive resources being devoted to stock repurchases? Corporate executives give several reasons, which I will discuss later. But none of them has close to the explanatory power of this simple truth: Stock-based instruments make up the majority of their pay, and in the short term buybacks drive up stock prices. In 2012 the 500 highest-paid executives named in proxy statements of U.S. public companies received, on average, $30.3 million each; 42% of their compensation came from stock options and 41% from stock awards. By increasing the demand for a company’s shares, open-market buybacks automatically lift its stock price, even if only temporarily, and can enable the company to hit quarterly earnings per share (EPS) targets.”
    Why does this remind me of the housing bubble?
    Meh, I’m always too worried about unsustainability – I’m sure there’s infinite money to inflate stock prices….

      1. ambrit

        Oh no! It’s Geoff, the Wannabe Cottager! And now he’s into the Rough Trade! (This is definitely not what the Butlins East Europe tour book promised!)

      2. Johann Sebastian Schminson

        You could always shoot him and claim ‘Stand-Your-Ground’.

        Honestly, your honor, he pulled a fork on me . . .

  17. diptherio

    Sign the Petition to Save the Co-operative Group ~Co-operative Business Consultants

    CBC believes that the proposed new Rules – which are not open to amendment – enshrine practices which fundamentally contradict the basic principles of the co-operative movement.

    Particular concerns are:

    the provision that “the Board shall always have a majority of Independent Non-Executive Directors” – who will not be subject to open election by the members; and

    the imposition of a rule (118.6) which hinders members from making any future changes to the governance of their co-operative.

    CBC believes that a co-operative run by a Board which in its majority is ‘independent’ of its members is a contradiction in terms.

    All cooperators are asked to sign, not just those in the UK.

  18. judabomber

    IMHO, Patrick Lang at Sic Semper Tyrannis summarizes ISIS and the Administration’s next steps best:

    “The SecDef/CJCS presser yesterday was illuminating in many ways. Most obviously they were covering for the absent Golfer in Chief whose smiling and laughing person is so evident in the media, Dempsey stated forthrightly that IS is especially dangerous because its ambitions are both limitless and apocalyptic, and that eventually the movement will have to be defeated and destroyed.

    I agree with that assesment. The Jpost quote above is merely Israeli logrolling expressing their frustration with not being able to “move” the Golfer’s foreign policy in the detail they would like. You can expect to see a maximum effort by Bibi’s vendu US Congress to block a nuclear deal with Iran (or any other kind of deal). I agree with Dempsey that IS is an existential threat to all the regional governent except Israel and Iran. Having said that, I remind everyone again that it was the US invasion of Iraq and destruction of the existing Iraqi state as well as US agitation leading to the Arab Spring disasters that were the root causes for the disorder that now infests Iraq, Syria and potentially all the other Arab States. It was one of the main functions of the previous governments to suppress the Sunni extremists who have now found their voice in IS. We broke these governments and now we truly and unfortunately own the mess. We are going to war against IS. This time there should be a declaration of war by Congress. That would clean up a lot of the legal issues that plagued the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.”

    1. Lord Koos

      American declarations of war are as extinct as the brontosaurus. From what I understand, with in a formal declaration there is strict language against war profiteering and serious penalties for it as well. Which is no doubt why it hasn’t been used since 1941.

    2. Jackrabbit

      Too many are buying into the ISIS hype. After all we’ve seen from the Obama Administration, people should be way more skeptical.

      AFAICT, ISIS is a useful tool for US-Israel-KSA to counter Shia Iran and Iran’s allies Syria and Hezbolla.

      – The US could’ve done something about ISIS earlier but didn’t.

      – The claim that ISIS is/was funded by non-governmental elites in KSA/Gulf States with out the knowledge of these countries is ludicrous.

      – The claim that ISIS grew and developed into this awesome danger without the knowledge of US/Israel/KSA is ludicrous.

      – Covert support for Syrian rebels was bound to find its way to more radical groups.

      – The much hyped peace initiative with Iran has gone nowhere.

      The ISIS hype is politically expedient:

      – USA elections in November force the administration to recognize the threat so as to eliminate an issue for Republicans;

      – Diverts attention from Ukraine mess;

      – The ‘problem’ is made out to be so big that no easy/near-term solution is possible (we don’t really WANT to take action against an entity that we helped create with our allies)

      – And the fearmongering is so great that any solution that may be proposed will be accepted.
      Remember that in his West Point speech Obama asked for $5 billion from Congress for more neocon meddling and Congress was not very receptive!


      Once again, its important to read these articles by Sy Hersh:

      The Redirection

      The Red Line and the Rat Line

      H O P

      1. Katniss Everdeen

        If there even IS an ISIS. Supposedly a British guy did the beheading. Could anyone in THIS country tell a Kurd or a Turk from an “ISIS” fighter? Toyota trucks, American equipment, generic Arabs, an unidentifiable (for most Americans) language with subtitles, familiar rebar and cement rubble, desolate desert landscape with copious dust, black and white flags flapping everywhere. Mysterious “Yazidis” disappeared. A “leader” whose name is “Baghdaddi,” in case anyone’s forgotten what this is about. Precious little concern in the ME about this deadly “scourge” which is guaranteed to be targeting every town Podunk, USA town square.

        And the answer? Why, bomb SYRIA, of course, which they’ve been trying to do for a year.

        Wag. The. Dog.

      2. Andrew Watts

        The problem with this kind of thinking is that it’s all rationalization after the fact.

        “The US could’ve done something about ISIS earlier but didn’t.”

        The US/Israel/KSA/Turkey wanted to bomb Assad. How would that have hurt IS?

        “The claim that ISIS is/was funded by non-governmental elites in KSA/Gulf States with out the knowledge of these countries is ludicrous.”

        They control most of Syria’s oil and gas fields. Whether they were funded by KSA/Gulf States in the past is irrelevant to the present.

        “The claim that ISIS grew and developed into this awesome danger without the knowledge of US/Israel/KSA is ludicrous.”

        Up until about last week or so Washington was treating the Islamic State as just another terrorist group and not what they really are; nation-builders.

        After seizing Mosul and other parts of Iraq they smashed the border between Syria/Iraq. Their ambitions reach far beyond the end of Sykes-Picot. Individuals who took IS seriously were hoping that they couldn’t operate in non-Sunni territories. Other disappointed hopes included the Sunni alliance between tribals, former Baathists, and the hardcore Jihadis falling apart.

        “Covert support for Syrian rebels was bound to find its way to more radical groups.”

        Oh, you saw this one coming did you? Tell us when you predicted that groups allied with or under the banner of the Free Syrian Army would join the Islamic State. There are no moderate rebel groups in Syria. They’re all a bunch of radical Islamic fundamentalists. The fact you seem to deny this means you’ve either bought into the propaganda or you’re simply ignorant of the reality on the ground.

        In either above case you’re not qualified enough to comment on it with any degree of accuracy. The constant appeal of authority using Hersh’s pieces notwithstanding.

        1. Jackrabbit

          The US/Israel/KSA/Turkey wanted to bomb Assad. How would that have hurt IS?
          This makes no logical sense since I have proposed they want to use IS/ISIS against Asad and Iran.
          Whether they were funded by KSA/Gulf States in the past is irrelevant to the present.
          You deliberately ignore my main point: that US/Israel/KSA would’ve known about the funding and either allowed or encouraged it. And I think most people would agree that the details of how they started is VERY relevant
          Up until about last week or so Washington was treating the Islamic State as just another terrorist group and not what they really are; nation-builders. . . . Individuals who took IS seriously were hoping . . . .
          This is MSM messaging, which is accepted and regurgitated by people who don’t think it matters how ISIS got started.
          Oh, you saw this one coming did you?
          Well, I think plan-A was bombing Syria. Hezbolla would probably be attacked after Syria. But Russia’s intervention disrupted those plans.
          They’re all a bunch of radical Islamic fundamentalists. The fact you seem to deny this means you’ve either bought into the propaganda or you’re simply ignorant of the reality . . .
          There are differences among the groups, which aren’t very meaningful to my analysis but which the Obama Administration touts when explaining their support for ‘moderates’. Your depiction of these groups (“all a bunch of radical Islamic fundamentalists”) however is telling.
          Your not qualified . . . appeal of authority
          Your assertion is rather presumptuous as you don’t know how qualified I may be. Further, as an anonymous commenter, I don’t expect anyone to rely on what I have to say. I explain my point of view and its logical basis. If you have some problem with what Hersh has written, you should say so instead of casting aspersions. And I will repeat what have have previously said: People should learn the facts and make up their own mind.

          1. Andrew Watts

            “This makes no logical sense since I have proposed they want to use IS/ISIS against Asad and Iran. “

            It appears like some sort of entente between US-Iran-Assad will be formed to combat the Islamic State in spite of whatever Israel or KSA wants. Both the US and Iran joined forces together to force Maliki out of power. We’re already seeing military cooperation with US intelligence allegedly providing targeting intel on IS positions to the Syrians.

            “You deliberately ignore my main point: that US/Israel/KSA would’ve known about the funding and either allowed or encouraged it. And I think most people would agree that the details of how they started is VERY relevant”

            We provided Ho Chi Minh and his movement with funding in the past. Did that matter during the Vietnam War or was the whole war a farce designed to enrich the merchants of death? That’s not a rhetorical question because I’m drawing parallels between the national liberation movements and the Arab Spring / Sunni uprising against the Western-back regimes on one hand and the Islamic State and Iran/Assad/Hezbollah in a sectarian conflict pitting Sunni against the Shia and other groups across the Levant.

            “This is MSM messaging, which is accepted and regurgitated by people who don’t think it matters how ISIS got started.”

            You can’t have it both ways. The Islamic State is either a threat to the fragile stability of the Middle East region, which includes American proxies like Kurdistan and Saudi Arabia, or they’re a tool of US intelligence meant to combat Iran/Assad/Hezbollah. Which doesn’t explain why they’re fighting the Kurds right now.

            “There are differences among the groups, which aren’t very meaningful to my analysis but which the Obama Administration touts when explaining their support for ‘moderates’. Your depiction of these groups (“all a bunch of radical Islamic fundamentalists”) however is telling.”

            The Free Syrian Army affiliated groups indulged in a lot of slaughtering of civilians and ethnic cleansing of their own. Those brigades that joined up with the Islamic State cannot exactly be described as moderate or secular either. That goes double for the Baathists. But I guess I’m sticking to the messaging of the MSM?

            “Your assertion is rather presumptuous as you don’t know how qualified I may be. Further, as an anonymous commenter, I don’t expect anyone to rely on what I have to say. I explain my point of view and its logical basis. If you have some problem with what Hersh has written,”

            My apologies if you thought that snarky remark was a personal attack. Reading it through the second time made it sound like it was and a whole lot mean spirited then I intended. I have no problem with what Hersh was saying but that was then and this is now. It’s a whole lot worse now.

          2. Jackrabbit

            And now there’s this: The Fish James Foley Video and The James Foley Video is Obviously Fake

            If everything is AS IT SEEMS, then why would they manufacture video like this?

            If they are simply REACTING to events, then why would they manufacture video like this?


            @Andrew Watts: Are all of these people who are questioning the video QUALIFIED to think or only qualified to listen (to the government)?


            Disclaimer: I haven’t see the video, but the number of different sources and cogent analysis seems credible.

      3. Johann Sebastian Schminson

        When you create a powerful vacuum in close proximity to a mountain of shit, guess what fills that vacuum . . .

      4. vidimi

        that’s a pretty solid assessment. i also said a few weeks ago that running maliki out of power was also convenient for the u.s. if ISIS didn’t exist, they would probably have to create them.

    3. Banger

      I have to agree with JR–IS is an artifact of US policy–there is simply no way in today’s 24/7 globalist surveillance state that the USG was not aware of who funded, supplied and trained IS. Dempsey knows that IS will be a source of power for his tribe for a generation. Again, I recommend tracing the history of the US relation with fundamentalist Islamic groups since the 1950’s.

      1. Andrew Watts

        It goes even further back in time than that. The long-standing humiliations inflicted by foreign imperialists on Sunni Arabs played a major role. While the Iraqi invasion of 2003 has assisted in unleashing this crisis I’d say the failure of the Arab Spring to achieve a non-violent resolution was an even bigger factor. The Arabs have gotten their pride back and they’re not going to surrender it easily.

        What did Kennedy say about those who make a peaceful revolution impossible?

  19. MtnLife

    Interesting point made here in this NPR piece about how police departments NEED to use their new military gear: “One of the stipulations for getting this equipment transferred is that it’d be used within a year of receipt. It’s a kind of use it or lose it policy. And that gives law enforcement agencies a real incentive to put these military weapons and vehicles to use in things such as crowd control, as we saw in Ferguson.

    1. Lord Koos

      Does anyone really think the pentagon is keeping track of every little police department in the country to see if they are using the gear or not? It’s hard to believe that someone has the job of reposessing surplus gear from local police forces. I have a hard time understanding why this stuff was given to cops rather than the Iraqi army we profess to support.

      1. optimader

        “I have a hard time understanding why this stuff was given to cops rather than the Iraqi army”
        Are you that naiive or just being sarcastic? Much of it was shredded in Iraq because the pentagon understands the relationship.
        It was given to the police depts. for a couple reasons, IMO one of them being turning municipal budgets into sources of cashflow to maintain the vendor base. All this equipment are maintenance pigs.

        1. Banger

          Always follow the money and it will lead to the truth in a society that values money above all things including God.

          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            All imperial adventures are about money, which the Fourth Rome can issue as much as it wants.

      2. Banger

        Actually they probably do keep track–the Pentagon is a bureaucrat’s wet-dream, no matter how trivial the matter or office it will be fully staffed and funded.

    2. cnchal

      It wouldn’t surprise me if some of the police departments that have them put a few hundred miles on them in a year. Just to say they used them.

      When you see these things on a public road mixed in with traffic, the absurdity of it is so obvious. I just imagine the cops pulling over a kid on a bike with one of those, and burst out laughing.

      These things are white elephants to the taxpayers whose police departments have them.

      This is where corruption is. Who thought it was a good idea to saddle municipalities with these idiotic vehicles? Perhaps some police departments just use them in a parade, like a dangerous clown car, and claim the exemption, because they can’t return them.

  20. Tenney Naumer

    With regard to the “global warming slowdown”:

    Here is the thing. In spite of natural ocean cooling cycles in both the Pacific and the Atlantic, temperatures continue to climb. Every decade has been hotter than the one that preceded it, since at least 1980.

    What this means is that in spite of stupendous amounts of heat energy being absorbed by the ocean, the energy imbalance is so great that even the oceans can’t handle it.

    In the meantime, the hotter waters are melting the bottom of the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, and it has passed its tipping point and so eventually will collapse into the ocean.

    Furthermore, a gazillion gallons of hotter water has moved to the North Atlantic and is poised to enter the Arctic Sea, and its path will also take it right over the Eastern Siberian Arctic Shelf, which is where all the thawing subsea permafrost is, causing it to thaw even more. The coming winter will cause the ice to form on the surface of the ocean, trapping that warm water (since it will no longer be able to vent heat to the atmosphere). Nice, huh!

    And so while so many humans are just blindly going their merry way and doing nothing about CO2, another decade or so will pass, then all that heat in the deep ocean will find its way back to the surface and fry us!

  21. Tenney Naumer

    Sorry, I should have written that warmer ocean waters are melting the underside of the edges giant outlet glaciers of the Western Antarctic Ice Sheet, more commonly known as the WAIS. They are now not held back by undersea ridges that had held them back.

  22. wbgonne

    Most astonishing to me was the “surprise” evinced, as if nobody knew the so-called warming “pause” was because the heat was going into the ocean. Yes, before the Pacific Ocean was more implicated and now it’s the Atlantic but, so what, it’s all part of the biosphere. And even with the “pause” we are experiencing hotter years than any in recorded history. As soon as the oceans stop absorbing the heat — within a couple of decades at most, from what I’ve read — the temperatures will spike like we hit the accelerator on the gas pedal. Which, of course, is precisely what we’ve done under President Frackentstein.

    Let them drink oil!

    1. Tenney Naumer

      In fact, for climate scientists, there is really no surprise here. They have always known the excess heat (over 90% of it) has been going into the oceans. As the oceans are vast and there are relatively few ways to measure its temperature at depth, it remained to find out where exactly the heat was going.

      This is just one study, adding to the body of research.

      Journalists that write these articles for laypersons are always trying to hype things.

      The climate system is extremely complex, and there are many factors influencing the slowdown in warming; but the main point is that there is an enormous energy imbalance coming in from the sun and it has to go somewhere because it is not escaping back out to space.

  23. Murky

    Lovely run of links today about Russia & Ukraine!

    Queen sow Anne Applebaum wants NATO to overun planet Earth:

    Monsanto will control Ukraine’s agricultural sector:

    The History Channel: “The Secret Hitler-Stalin Pact, 75 Years Ago”:

    Vandals desecrate Soviet era monuments in Bulgaria:

    Take a tour of Crimea with Der Spiegel magazine!

    Geopolitiical genius Dmitri Trenin explains “Russia’s New National Strategy”:

  24. optimader

    Nobel guru in economics?
    stop right there..
    no, wait

    Christopher Sims – a monetary expert.. A monetary expert?
    stop right there.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Good work by Pritchard…when you add ‘guru’ to the person, it just make the person more mystically powerful, in addition to the Noble cachet…and you gotta go with that at that point.

    2. cnchal

      “Some 60pc of people in the US say they doubt there will be any government benefits for them when they retire, and 60pc of those already retired think their benefits will be reduced,” he said.

      This has powerful implications. Many of these people are retrenching pre-emptively, en masse, in most of the mature industrial economies. They are discounting a “future stream of primary surpluses”.

      By the same token businesses are putting off investment and hoarding cash in anticipation of a hit to come. We may be deluding ourselves in thinking that companies will soon be confident enough to let rip with a fresh burst of spending and investment. They may just sit on their money for year after year.

      If this is broadly true, it means that any use of fiscal stimulus will be neutralised by the countervailing actions of taxpayers, and may even be a net negative. Deficits become “deflationary”, contrary to standard textbook theory or populist assumptions, and threaten a self-fulfilling effect that becomes almost impossible to stop over time.

      Words. What they mean depends on who’s talking.

      future stream of primary surpluses – won’t get paid

      deluding ourselves in thinking that companies will soon be confident enough to let rip with a fresh burst of spending and investment. – how much more stuff do we need?

      any use of fiscal stimulus will be neutralised by the countervailing actions of taxpayers, – how much more stuff do we need?

      Deficits become “deflationary”, contrary to standard textbook theory or populist assumptions – fooled you all, the textbooks are nothing but a pack of lies.

    1. optimader

      “Savage treatment of Gombert behind closed Cowpens doors alleged by Salamander”
      I prefer my headline..

      “The former male Commanding Officer ” former male sounds like a rather severe sanction, no?

      1. TedWa

        Thanks for the link, the success of Monsanto is the perfect example of how owned our government really is.

      1. Murky

        Gasp! Soviet heroic statuary is deeply revered by all Russians everywhere. You too can collect some of this marvelous statuary; here’s a link.

        And if you are merely a tourist and not a collector, at least go visit Grutas Park in Lithuania. You’ll see some some splendid examples of Soviet statuary.

        1. fresno dan

          thanks for that!
          I liked the three different sized heads together – I wonder if that’s Freudian or sumthin……. The big green hand was nice too.

        2. Johann Sebastian Schminson

          Jeez — that place is a gold mine.

          Bust of Valentina Tereshkova (1937- ) in Silumin alloy, c 1960s. Stands about 6″ tall. World famous Soviet Cosmonaut and the first woman to ever fly in outer space.

          And all this time, i thought it was Alice Cramden.

          1. OIFVet

            This brings back so many memories… Every school and office had a Lenin’s corner, though in BG he was joined by Georgi Dimitrov. The classrooms had portraits of 19th century heroes and Todor Zhivkov… And the May Day Parades: my favorite. Meant school was almost out, weather already gorgeous, and time to exasperate teachers by marching like a pioneer McAuslans, “swinging his right arm in time with his right leg and tripping over his untied laces. (

    1. optimader

      HAHAHAHA just looked at it! excellent! Offensive statuary taken to a new level. Beautifully executed, hat tip to the street artist(s)

    2. fresno dan

      I thought the Santa Claus with a machine gun was a nice touch – “North Pole enterprises has changed its policies with regard to the naughty…..merely not getting what you wanted no longer is deemed to sufficiently disincentive bad behavior…..

    3. Johann Sebastian Schminson

      It’s extremely important to preserve cultural artifacts — the are history (the history of the world is the history of art).

      For me, the world should have collectively crushed the Taliban the moment they blew up the Buddhas of Bamiyan.

    1. Doug Terpstra

      Anything yet on MH17 flight data/cockpit voice recorders? Air traffic control recordings? Satellite photos? Radar files? Engineering, ballistic, metallurgical, and chemical forensics? These are taking much longer to tamper with and fabricate than any of us expected. Please keep us posted.

    1. abynormal

      this is getting real interesting: [Pfeffer] said it was not clear when, or if, the eruption would melt through the ice — which is between 100 to 400 meters (330 to 1,300 feet) thick — and fling steam and ash into the air. She said it could take up to a day for the ice to melt — or the eruption might remain contained beneath Europe’s largest glacier.

      Scientists were monitoring a hydrological station downstream from the volcano for flooding, a common result of volcanic eruptions in Iceland.

      Pfeffer said the amount of ash produced by the new eruption would depend on the thickness of the ice.

      “The thicker the ice, the more water there is, the more explosive it will be and the more ash-rich the eruption will be,” she said.

  25. lambert strether

    Yves, I am at… the diamond geranium place, laptop with accounts bricked, hence I use this medium…

  26. Fool

    The Ha’aretz piece is tragic, and yet it’s the logical conclusions of American Jewish PR. I would like to comment on that as my background was at the heart of the means of this production.


    The most significant part of the article to me was to hear “Amalek” invoked — the biblical desert people who constantly thorn the Israelites’ balls. If my recollection of Day School serves me, it was taught that the justification for God’s commandment that *all* the Amalekites be annihilated was that they were simply evil incarnate, an objectified boogeyman. Indeed, by this logic, moral scruples must be qualified when you’re defending your right to exist against an entire people. *This* is the message of Israeli/American-Jewish PR when it comes to Palestinians. Think of it as a form of Orientalism meets the Jewish victim complex.

    a) Innocent Palestinian children aren’t killed. Rather, Hamas intentionally fires weapons from schools, mothers strap bombs to their babies, etc..
    b) Hatred of Israel isn’t the result of generational demoralization and suffering caused by occupation. Rather, families and schools teach their children to hate Israel (and the “settlements”, in case you’re wondering, are simply a “smokescreen”).
    c) Israel didn’t kick anyone out of their homes. Rather, adjacent Arab countries told them to kindly clear out and not get in the way as they annihilated the Jews, and then they would be able to seamlessly return.
    d) Israel isn’t brutally oppressing Palestinians. Rather, its defending its right to exist.

    The point is, the most brutal tactics of oppression can sufficiently satisfy the “liberal” conscience of American Jewry so long as the message is that it is liberal values that are being defended. (And how can the country with the hottest gay pride parade East of the Atlantic *not* be on the side of righteous liberal values? — so reductive is American political PR). Anyway, because that is hardly the case — needless to say — the “liberal values” that American Jews are purporting to represent are achievable (well, to idiots) only by totally objectifying a people and reducing them to an evil Other. (And my own anecdotal experience of this is too embarrassing to even describe as an anonymous commenter).

    1. Doug Terpstra

      Thank you for a refreshingly frank and illuminating post on deliberately muddled history. Your anguish is well expressed, shared and appreciated.

    2. Johann Sebastian Schminson

      I hope to the FSM that you meant to write: “. . . the “FALSE liberal values” that SOME American Jews are purporting to represent are achievable . . .”

      Nothing like lumping an entire culture into one big, hatable, sub-human mass.

      1. Fool

        Well, as an American Jew, clearly I wasn’t speaking about *all* American Jews.

        But ease up on the “sub-human” talk, Herr.

  27. LifelongLib

    This link about how the comments section in Common Dreams was manipulated is so bizarre it’s hard to believe. I thought I’d pass it along and couldn’t think where else to post it. Apologies if it’s linked somewhere else or you’ve already seen it.

    1. LifelongLib

      Sorry, meant to direct this to Yves or Lambert (whoever is managing the comments here) although it’s of some general interest.

    2. Doug Terpstra

      That’s an inventive and sophisticated Hasbara/propaganda bombing campaign, diabolically crafty and almost certainly funded, not a spontaneous exception. Apparently Israel/ADL is not inflaming enough anti-Semitism; they must create their own bigoted straw men to maintain high levels of fear and guilt. The fake dialog is quite cunning — a new low in Scionist agitprop. Someone here linked to that yesterday or the day before, but it needs a lot of exposure.

    1. Johann Sebastian Schminson

      Lord have mercy — I thought she was going to cook the poodle.

      Ain’t a bun big enough for that dog (not to mention mustard and relish).

  28. Carolinian

    Anyone talking about this?

    The brother was telling me today that the paranoid websites are starting to ask questions.

    Moon adds:

    The journalist James Foley was a propagandist for the Free Syrian Army. In that he had joined important U.S. politicians. The FSA terrorists were trained by the U.S. and then converted to ISIS which the U.S. now claims to fight. The U.S. is still giving rocket launchers and TOWs to FSA gangs, aka soon-to-be-ISIS followers.

    Now I see why Foley was eulogized on The Newshour as a “frequent contributor.”

    1. cnchal

      Thanks for the link.

      I had never heard of this story and it was heartening to see that there is at least one wealthy industrialist that would fight globalization as practiced today.

      The sobering part is that Bassett Furniture Company is alive today, because anti dumping law was used as a way to apply tariffs onto Chinese made furniture.

      I wonder though, what would have happened were Bassett Furniture Company managed by a PE firm.

      Suppose the State of Virginia teachers union pension fund, in an effort to secure their retirement, hands over their money to a PE firm.

      Up to that point, the employees of Bassett Furniture are earning a good enough income to pay taxes, so that the teachers are paid to teach the children of Bassett Furniture’s employees, and even have money left over to put into their pensions. But the returns are not high enough, so a PE firm is hired to make more money.

      Does anyone think that the Basset Furniture Company would be anything more than a marketing shell after being bought by the PE firm? Now the former employees of Basset Furniture cannot pay nearly enough taxes anymore so teacher’ pay gets cut or the teaching jobs are eliminated, never mind save for retirement.

      Waiting patiently nearby though is the military. Ready to pay wages, for cannon fodder.

  29. Johann Sebastian Schminson

    So much angst and commentary on the ME, and nary a concern about the failing state on our southern border (not talking about illegal immigration).

    1. abynormal

      Cool Site HD, Thanks.

      “Disinformation is duping.
      Misinformation is tricking.”
      T.Beta, Master of Stupidity

      “The major goal of the Cold War mind control programs was to create dissociative symptoms and disorders, including full multiple personality disorder. The Manchurian Candidate is fact, not fiction, and was created by the CIA in the 1950’s under BLUEBIRD and ARTICHOKE mind control programs. Experiments with LSD, sensory deprivation,
      electro-convulsive treatment, brain electrode implants and hypnosis were designed to create amnesia, depersonalization, changes in identity and altered states of consciousness. (p. iii)

      “Denial of the reality of multiple personality by these doctors [See page 114 for names] in the mind control network, who are also on the FMSF [False Memory Syndrome Foundation] Scientific and Professional Advisory Board, could be disinformation. The disinformation could be amplified by attacks on specialists in multiple personality as CIA conspiracy lunatics” (P.10)

      “If clinical multiple personality is buried and forgotten, then the Manchurian Candidate Programs will be safe from public scrutiny. (p.141)”
      Colin A. Ross, Bluebird : Deliberate Creation of Multiple Personality by Psychiatrists (we paid them the big bucks)

  30. Roland

    Found this article via Angry Arab:’s-deferred-promise

    The article is a translation from the original in Arabic, and it’s a bit awkward at points. Nevertheless some interesting points made:

    1. Puts emergence of ISIS in context of the history of Wahhabi discontent with Saudi regime.

    2. “ISIS’s project therefore is nothing more than reviving the Wahhabism of the founding generation and this worries the House of Saud because, this time, reforming the Wahhabi project comes from outside the Saudi state and undercuts its legitimacy.”

    3. ” ‘Our battle is a battle of monotheism against disbelief and faith against polytheism. It is not an economic, political or social battle…’ ” I wonder how long ISIS will be able to maintain such a high level of ideological purity? Article’s author assumes that ISIS ideological purity will be maintained.

    4. Very interesting commentary on why Saudi regime undermined MB gov’t in Egypt: “They allocated a huge budget to overthrow the Muslim Brotherhood rule in Egypt in order to prevent the emergence of a model of Islamic rule that competes with and undermines the legitimacy of the Saudi regime.”

  31. Bunk McNulty

    “Under Missouri law, all a citizen claiming self-defense or a police officer claiming to have fired while pursuing a dangerous criminal need do is ‘inject the issue of justification.’ In other words, he only needs to produce some evidence (his own testimony counts) supporting the claim. Once he does so, ‘any reasonable doubt on the issue requires a finding for the defendant.’ In Missouri, the burden doesn’t budge an inch, even after we know that the defendant has killed the victim. It doesn’t matter that there is certainty that Darren Wilson shot Michael Brown. As long as there is still the slightest possibility that Wilson acted in his own defense, Missouri law favors Wilson.”

    Darren Wilson’s Conviction Will Be Basically Impossible

    Jeez, even though the kid was unarmed? Really?

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