2:00PM Water Cooler 6/12/15

By Lambert Strether of Corrente.


Patagonia CEO Rose Marcario: “We stand to gain financially from TPP and the potential duty relief on products made within the region, but the minor potential gains are not worth the social and environmental costs” [SNEWS].

Handy chart of pro- and con-TPP money forces [Spotlight].

Votes in the House: The Customs Bill (the Christmas tree bill), TAA (the fake retraining bill), then TPA (“Fast Track”) [Dave Johnson, CAF].

6:06PM yesterday: “Because of possible Democratic defections, Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.) said the GOP whip team might have to approach some anti-TAA Republicans and ask them to vote in favor” [The Hill]. So we’ve unbundled issues from party now. Good to know.

9:31 AM: “Democrats and Republicans have no idea whether the votes are there to pass: [TPP] [Politico].

10:00AM~, because the world’s greatest newspaper doesn’t effing timestamp its posts: “His message, delivered in what House Democrats called a rousing, impassioned speech, was ‘play it straight'” [New York Times] Oh. TPP opponents are crooked. Check.

12:10PM: “The debate among Democrats over the best course was so tense this week that DeLauro accused her longtime friend House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi of having “misread” the will of the caucus in helping Obama and House Speaker John Boehner structure the legislation and the votes to ease the path for the fast-track bill. Asked Friday who had a better feel for the caucus, DeLauro just grinned” [Vox].

“‘The President tried to both guilt people and impugn their integrity. I was insulted,’ Rep. Peter Defazio, D-Oregon told reporters after the meeting” [CNN].

“Some Democrats have quietly criticized labor for heavy-handed tactics. Those tactics have included suspending campaign donations, staging protests at congressional offices and flooding House members with emails and phone calls” [Guardian]. That seems quite mild to me. Is it too much to ask that Democratic traitors who cashed in national sovereignty stop whinging, too?

Jim Dean, Democracy for America: “We will not lift a finger or raise a penny to protect you when you’re attacked in 2016, we will encourage our progressive allies to join us in leaving you to rot, and we will actively search for opportunities to primary you with a real Democrat” [Wall Street Journal]. We should have heard language like this four, eight, twelve years ago, but better late than never. I’m with Dean. Congress critters that sell out our national sovereignty should be hunted to the ends of the earth. Of course, Dean has to follow through.

In another sign of the End Times:

Screen Shot 2015-06-12 at 1.46.37 PM



This parliamentary maneuvering is above my paygrade. Readers who are better informed than I am, please chime in!



Sanders: “In virtually every instance, what I’m saying is supported by a significant majority of the American people” [WaPo]. WaPo: “The overall verdict? Yes.”

Sanders on Clinton’s TPP silence: “You can be for it or against it. But I don’t understand how, on an issue of such consequence, you don’t have an opinion” [ABC] [hums chorus].

Sanders interview on Diane Rehm (audio) [Diane Rehm Show]. This is the show where eventheliberal Rehm asked Sanders if he was a dual citizen of Israel, based on a Facebook comment she read.

The S.S. Clinton

Clinton campaign prepositions talking points for Roosevelt Island formal rollout tomorrow: “Clinton will discuss how her mother shaped the person she is today and why she could not duck away from this fight” [Los Angeles Times]. “Some parts of the speech that campaign officials previewed Thursday, in fact, could just as easily have come from Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.” We’ll see. Words are wind.

“Short version: Clinton is indeed ministering to Obama coalition voter groups — minorities, millennials, college educated whites. But nonetheless, she’s thus far campaigning like a mainstream Democrat. In fact, those things are now two sides of the same coin. Meanwhile, very few of her positions thus far preclude reaching beyond those groups [WaPo]. In other words, identity politics, and a 50% + 1 election strategy that doesn’t lead to a mandate.

“The fact that a debate that’s torn Democrats apart to the point that they’re threatening to let each other ‘rot’ has played out without the participation of the overwhelming frontrunner for president is nothing short of remarkable” [The Note].

“Clinton’s building her strategy around a series of domestic policy rollouts. How she’s doing this is equally telling: Advisers told me it was an elaborate, even West Wing-style policy process, with concentric circles of advisers and pollsters who are cooking up a comprehensive economic policy, some of which will be for public consumption, some of which will be employed if she’s elected” [Politico]. “[S]ome of which will be for public consumption.” Oh. Like TPP, then?

“Since declaring her candidacy in April, Hillary Clinton has spent much of her time attending house parties. Clinton’s gamble is that while collecting relatively small checks from relatively small groups — the maximum is $2,700 per head and the average party attracts about 120 people — she is also harvesting something else: goodwill, in a business sense, among a cohort of early donors whose feeling of personal connection to Clinton and her campaign are expected to pay dividends down the line” [Politico]. Could be true. In a way, this adapts the strategy of the Clinton 2008 campaign after the caucus debacle, where they stormed the small gyms of middle America.

“O’Malley Rallies Opposition to ‘Fast Track’ Trade Law” [Weekly Standard]. Rat leaps on to sailing ship.

“‘Silent ‘time for a woman’ Republican women outnumber silent sexist Democratic men,” said an Iowa Democrat” [Politico]. Well, yeah, given that Clinton won a majority in 2008 (if all the votes are counted) I’d say they do. ”

Republican Establishment

The Iowa Straw Poll is dead [Des Moines Register]. Republican establishment stuffs the crazies back in their box.

Anonymous Republican New Hampshire operative: “It’s going to be a horse race and Bush is no American Pharoah right now” [Politico].

Republican Principled Insurgents

“Scott Walker is now planning to strip tenure from professors in the University of Wisconsin higher education system” [Talking Points Memo]. Walker’s right. The only people who should have tenure are Congresscritters in gerrymandered safe districts. And running against pointy-headed intellectuals throws red meat to the base.

Republican Clown Car

“The pediatric neurosurgeon-turned-candidate told a crowd of Iowa Republicans he is “thinking very seriously” about adding “a covert division of people who look like the people in this room, who monitor what government people do” [MSNBC]. Will there be badges? Decoder rings?

Christie’s PAC paid for his NBA finals ticket [National Journal]. Christie doesn’t learn, does he?

“[M]embers of Congress themselves were three times more likely to meet with people identified as donors than regular constituents” [Daily Dot]. Credo study.

Stats Watch

Portuguese 10-year bonds: “GSPT10YR:IND Yield 3.037; up 0.142%; change: 4.91% [Bloomberg]. That’s a bump. Greek contagion enters Mr. Market’s lower backbrain.

Consumer Sentiment, June 2015: “Consumer sentiment is back on the climb,” in both current conditions and expectations [Bloomberg]. “a bit of a rebound from last month, and being touted as proof of a strong recovery, but it also looks like the drift down may still be in progress, much like the consumer sales showed disturbingly declining rates of annual growth even though the recent release was an uptick [Mosler Economics].

“A Federal Reserve data release (Z.1 Flow of Funds) for 1Q2015 – which provides insight into the finances of the average household – shows a modest improvement in average household net worth” [Econintersect]. Joe and Jane Sixpack are better off. “What is concerning is that the 35% of Americans who have no home or assets are no better off (living from paycheck to paycheck) – and have no path to consume more. This person is not modeled by this index.”

Black Injustice Tipping Point

“Community leaders asked the court to find probable cause in the case by using what Cleveland.com describes as “an obscure Ohio law.” This law “allows any citizen with knowledge of the facts of a case to formally ask a judge to issue an arrest warrant” [Newsweek]. Important, because activists bypassed the prosecutor’s office.

““’He was just trigger happy,’ said Audrey Latham. ‘I don’t know if he was fearful or what, but he didn’t give my son any time to think. They shot him like a dog.'” [WTKR]. Lead, steroids… Take away their guns, get ’em out of their cars, and make ’em walk the beat.

More trouble in McKinney, this time about anti-LGBT bullying at the middle school [Buzzfeed]. I hate to think that the city touted as #1 place to live in America is a reactionary hellhole, but I’m having my priors reinforced, here.

Dear Old Blighty

The U.K. is important as a neo-liberal proving ground. Alert reader Steve keeps watch:

“George Osborne’s plan to sell the government’s 80 per cent stake in Royal Bank of Scotland, the expected highlight of this week’s Mansion House speech, looks set to fall short of Treasury expectations as leading investors baulk at buying shares in the state-rescued bank” [Ian Fraser, Herald Scotsman]. Once a big shitpile, always a big shitpile.

“The reality of Britain in 2015… food banks, welfare cuts and privatisation” [Aled Blake, Wales Online]. “On May 7, Britain didn’t just vote for a Conservative government, it voted for food banks, for tax cuts, for an end to the welfare state, for privatisation, for the dismantling of our understanding of society.” Well, not “Britain,” really. A very small minority in a few districts swung the vote in a first past the post system.

“Northern Ireland’s economic situation is perilously reliant on the public sector and public spending. … Westminster or civil servants taking control of the budget temporarily may provide enough space for negotiations but it is definitely a step backwards for the Belfast Agreement” [New Statesman].

Another Tory whack job: “Britain’s new nuclear power stations and other energy infrastructure projects must be designed to look beautiful to garner essential public support, the Energy Secretary, Amber Rudd, has said” [Independent].

Squillionaire Wretched Excess Watch

” Ex-IMF Chief Strauss-Kahn Acquitted in French Pimping Trial” [Bloomberg]. Good to see that the integrity and credibility of the international banking system has been restored to its former lustre.

News of the Wired

R.I.P. Ornette Coleman [Free Jazz Blog].

“Because algorithms are based on the past, they only satisfy preconditioned responses. They cannot give us what is new, surprising, challenging or different. Difference is what they are designed to dismiss. In effect, they hollow out life” [Japan Times]. See above.

“[A] more accessible version of Twitter already exists. It’s called Facebook, and it’s wildly popular” [Vox]. Unfortunately, Twitter can’t focus on what it actually does best — curated news feeds for 300 million infovores — because Wall Street, in yet another example of capital misallocation by elites, valued it like Facebook, when it has both a different readership and a different function. And we already have Facebook. We don’t need two (or, for that matter, one, but that’s a post for another time).

Pop Sonnet LXIII, “American Pie” (Don McLean) [Pop Sonnet]. The couplet is pretty angsty, at that.

* * *

Readers, feel free to contact me with (a) links, and even better (b) sources I should curate regularly, and (c) to find out how to send me images of plants. Vegetables are fine! Fungi are deemed to be honorary plants! See the previous Water Cooler (with plant) here. And here’s today’s plant, the fifth of Gardens, Week Six (Chuck):


Readers, the weekend’s discussion for “Open Thread on Water” was terrific. So many interesting projects! Please, send me pictures of your projects, at least if plants are involved, and when aren’t they? If only of maple twirlers in gutters!

If you enjoy Water Cooler, please consider tipping and click the hat. I need to keep my server up! And pay the plumber….


(Readers will notice that I have, at long last, improved the hat!)

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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. Lambert Strether Post author

    Next week!

    Moar sausage. I think we need a whip list for Democratic traitors.

          1. subgenius

            the lumber is the only part you can easily find from production in the US – all the rest (fittings and fixings) are imports :/

          1. b4real

            Its not at all complicated. A few four by fours, and a grinder to sharpen any suitable piece of metal available. I will post pics of the one I am going to build. Only trick is using a skilsaw to cut a groove in the 4×4’s for the blade to slide down.

            Thinking about towing it to D.C…

    1. craazyboy

      Ah yes. A clever plan to make our reps divulge their votes to us!

      I’m not real fluent in Robert’s (or boners) Rules of Order, but if you are playing “heads I win, tails you lose”, and the coin flip clearly identifies a winner, do you really get a Mulligan if the coin toss didn’t work out to your liking?????

      1. readerOfTeaLeaves

        Here’s the deal: sometimes you vote ‘yes’ on a total pile of crap, because as long as you are in ‘the majority’, you have the right to bring a topic back for revote. At least, under the version of Roberts Rules that my little commissions used. And knowing the rules really, really well allows you to strategize; not knowing the rules means you’re just more roadkill. IMVHO.

        I’m actually not clear as to why Obama and the TPP supporters are willing to make themselves political roadkill over this legislation. Yeah, they might ‘win’ a short-term, Phyrric victory, but longer term it looks to me as if a vote for TPP is political hair-kari.

        1. different clue

          Obama has no more elections left to run. So “political road-kill” is an irrelevant concept for him. He is auditioning for the hundreds of millions of dollars he will be payed if he gets Fast Track passed.

          About the Traitor Democrats . . . I don’t know how many are auditioning for money after leaving office, how many are voting out of racial loyalty to America’s “first black President”, how many are voting their hatred for the working class and disemployed class majority. If somebody could figure out which Traitor Democrat fits into which group, perhaps different ones can be targeted for changing their Fast Track votes in different ways.

    2. Kim Kaufman

      yes, once we get the votes, I guess, we’ll know who to call. But Obomber will find ways to sweeten the pot over the weekend. He’s got too much invested to let it go down, I think.

    3. Benedict@Large

      The view from my paygrade:

      The opposition is strong, and they must be noted as objecting. We are now watching everyone who needs to get up on their hind legs and crowing, “Look, I hear you. I hear you.” Come Monday, it’ll be back to business, and just enough votes will be there. It’s always just enough on matters like this.

      I would remind you of he recent Princeton/Northwestern study. In the last 20 years, NOT ONE issue the plebes held one position and the elites held another did the plebes win. Not one. Almost 2,000 votes spanning two decades, and the elites won every single time. You think it will be different this time? Then I’ve got a democracy to sell you.

        1. different clue

          I begin to wonder how many “sincere defeatists” are really just sharing their weary depression with the rest of us.

          I wonder if some of them are strategically placed enemy agents on a psychological operations mission to encourage people who are just short of giving up and quitting . . . to go ahead and give up and quit.

          1. Lambert Strether Post author

            Combating depression is extremely difficult. IMNSHO — and I have had the good fortune never to be afflicted with clinical depression, which is like breaking a limb or worse — the solution to both situational/seasonal depression and “political depression” is exactly the same: Get moving! Get the body in motion, no matter in what direction and no matter how small, at first.

        1. Doug Terpstra

          One of these days Charlie Brown is going to kick Lucy instead of the football. Eventually Charlie is going to get it into his round head that the usual polite politiking and petitioning isn’t cutting it. Or maybe he’s a masochist.

          1. jrs

            Even if we won and these trade agreements were defeated, it would be a great victory indeed! But it would STILL basically show that we live in a plutocracy (although in that case it would be one that occasionally listens to the people).

            Mass people movements needed to defeat laws thrust on us against our will by the plutocrats, but are the people ever able to be the ones pushing the laws? NEVER. This system were plutes push their laws on us, and we have to muster all the will we can to resist, we could debate the name of it but … it’s rape not consent, even when it’s thwarted rape. That type of “consent of the governed” wouldn’t even hold up in court for a date rape accusation.

            1. different clue

              If we won, that would give people a visible lesson that a win was indeed possible. This might give people more energy and inspiration for long-haul working to figure out how to carry the Social Class War battle to the heart of the Social Class Enemy.

              I wonder why there aren’t Californians picketing the Pelosi family restaurants with signs like: “Don’t buy food from traitors.” And if people ask what is traitorous about PelosiCo restaurants, the picketers can have ultra-simple bullet-pointed handouts outlining the depth of the treason involved.

              I wonder if the photoshopfully-skilled people might create mischevious posters like a poster of a smirking Obama and at the top it could say . . . Obamatrade. And at the bottom it could say the line in quotes . . . ” If you like your job, you can keep your job.”

    1. hidflect

      Sanders on Clinton’s TPP silence: “You can be for it or against it. But I don’t understand how, on an issue of such consequence, you don’t have an opinion”

      Sanders is dogwhistling the truth. Everyone knows Madame Clinton is for TPP. I just can’t understand why any journalist hasn’t asked her the “gotchya” question?

    1. hardWorkingBee

      We’ve seen this movie before when it comes to democrats: “I was against it before I was for it”, “I actually did vote for it before I voted against it”.

      Our goose is well and truly cooked, or it will be by next week.

        1. hunkerdown

          There is something to be said for flinging all the vegetables around inside the oven in the last moments.

            1. readerOfTeaLeaves

              The fact that TPP has run into so much opposition, and that unions and other advocacy groups are figuring out how to actually hold electeds accountable for their TPP vote is really making things interesting.
              Citizen engagement, enabled by social media or new ways of sharing information, can be amazing to watch.

              1. ambrit

                It would depend on the foot pounds of force those donuts are exerting on their targets. (Ever seen a well made potato gun in action? Hours of fun for the ‘donut hole’ family!)

                1. Lambert Strether Post author

                  This will sound terrible, because it is, but I was actually contemplating getting a potato gun to deal with a potential woodchuck problem in my garden. Fortunately, the problem never materialized.

                  1. different clue

                    I remember reading once somewhere that some Indians used to consider the dirt from around woodchuck burrow holes to carry ‘power’ and ‘good medicine’ for certain purposes. Obviously such dirt would have whatever minerals have leached from the surface and then stopped leaching right where the woodchuck digs. Would digging up some of that burrow-mouth dirt and spreading it around the garden raise the beneficial mineral levels of the targeted soil? If so, might one leave a tribute of picked vegetables right outside the burrow mouth for the woodchuck to find and eat? Thereby encouraging him to stay and keep digging more subsoil dirt to pile up around the burrow-mouth? Meaning yet more woodchuck dirt for you to harvest and spread around the garden?

        2. DJG

          Agreed, Lambert.

          A quote that I keep around, from William of Orange:

          One need not hope in order to undertake, nor succeed in order to persevere.

          Not exactly Obama’s slogan, now is it? And no doughnuts, either. {Wowsers, doughnuts: Part of the problem, not part of the solution.}

          There’s plenty of time to write a letter to your congresspeeps and put it in a mailbox of our poor moribund USPS. The phones still work. And demonstrations are a delightful walk–you get to be photographed endless numbers of times.

    2. ChrisFromGeorgia

      Remember though – in order to get TAA through they’re going to have to alter it to please Pelosi and other Dems. That means back to the Senate the bill must go. And they risk losing GOP votes if they go too far as well. This is getting dicey at best for Boehner and Obama. Note the passive-aggressiveness of Boehner – he puts the ball in Obama’s court.

      The fights not over – the GOP really wants this for some reason I do not understand. Why would they not take the long view and wait until 2017? They appear to want the Chamber cash more than anything.

      I met with a staffer locally here and expressed my dismay with TPA and TPP. The talking points I got were that TPA was not the same thing as TPP and would actually make it harder on Obama to negotiate a bad deal. Of course, my definition of “bad deal” and the Chamber of Commerce’s definition are completely opposite.

      I did get the impression that the staffers are getting blasted with calls and emails overwhelmingly against TPA. Keep up the good work everyone and next week we’ll have to stay on the beat.

        1. ChrisFromGeorgia

          From a tweet on Politico – Now Pelosi is demanding a vote on the highway bill before TAA can move.

          She wants a “robust” highway bill which is code for some good asphalt and shovel-ready jobs in her neck of the woods.

      1. ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®©

        Exactly. In it’s current shitty form, it didn’t come close to passing.

        They’re going to have to change it, and that means a conference committee with the Senate to work out the difference…assuming the House does pass some form of TAA.

        1. Lambert Strether Post author

          And whoopsadaisy, election season is right round the corner. The more of this monstrosity that emerges into the light, the worse it looks, so all the procedural roadblocks are helpful.

          1. ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®©

            Exactly. The thing stinks on ice.

            Now it’s going to be even harder to slip passed the public, in spite of all the lying in our corporate press.

            1. P walker

              Like TARP, it will fail to pass on the first attempt, after a public outcry, only to be passed on the second attempt.

              Then again, Obama’s plan to bomb Syria was blocked albeit he just dumped weapons into ISIS ranks instead. So that can be considered a half victory maybe.

              Thing is, we may not win, but we can sure make it painful for them…

                1. P walker

                  Hope and change had nothing to do with it. In fact, TARP still happened in spite of it.

                  Obama was always so fake I tried warning people before he scammed his way into the nomination. Obama was an empty suit anyone could pour what they wanted into it. “Hope” for the plebs, campaign cash for the ruling class.

                  The only difference now is that some people remember and can see the tiniest of minority still digging their own graves.

          2. wbgonne

            I have a few thoughts.

            I hear you when you throw donuts at defeatists … even though, at this low point, I don’t blame anyone for cynicism. It is only natural, but — as you suggest — it is toxic nonetheless.

            I agree that delay can be a winning strategy here, at least getting through Obama’s reign. Obama is a very lame duck who has scant personal support or loyalty in Congress. I did note that Obama managed to get several Black Caucus members to walk the plank for him and Fast Track got 28 (despicable) votes from the Democrats (primary challenges?). But that’s not much to show for all Obama has invested in TPP/TTIP. And election season effectively commences with Congress’ summer recess so the window is closing.

            OTOH: I am seeing some very alarming statements from Pelosi about trying to find a way to pass Trade Assistance. Yammerings about “getting the best deal possible” are often telltales of upcoming Democratic chicanery. And Fast Track is already done so if they get Trade Assistance through next week we get the rug pulled out again, just like it happened in the Senate.

            I’ve called my rep (Capuano) to give thanks for his votes today. Maybe that positive reinforcement will make a betrayal next week less likely. Can’t hurt anyway.

            1. Lambert Strether Post author

              Pelosi needs to be brought to understand that the best deal is no deal, both for her political survival and for that of her party. Perhaps her friend DeLauro can help her. (I should research where highway money goes and lay the results against the 28, but time presses….)

    3. Paul Tioxon

      Speaker Boehner had to personally request another TAA vote in front of Congress and was granted his request.

      The House has rejected the Trade Adjustment Assistance measure on a two-to-one margin (126-302). The measure will be reconsidered. It then approved Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) (219-211) and customs trade enforcement legislation (240-190).

      The poison pill of TAA keeps the entire bill from moving forward, out of Congress and onto the WH.

      The House will have to hold another vote on the exact same bill that was overwhelmingly rejected today, without being able to make any changes in the bill. If they did make changes, the bill goes back to the Senate for their approval of the changes or goes into a conference committee that fixes the differences and makes a unified bill. Either way, this will take forever to get done. So, next vote on TAA will determine if the entire trade package goes to the president with all of the authority to fast track and approve with minimal congressional review. It will be the blank check vote. It is almost impossible to think that over 300 nay votes will melt away to change their minds. AFL leader Trumka sat in front of NBC’s Andrea Mitchell and said that Dem Leader Nancy Pelosi was on his side and was against the fast tracking authority. Her reporting has proved accurate. How could she change now? Ugly and blood letting does not begin to approach her changing her mind. This is way beyond arm twisting and horse trading. There will be some of that, but with these numbers, 302 Nays, that’s losing 82 of those nays to the Yeas. There is only some much pork to pass out and threats of blood feuds to get the rest would be part of the sausage making. This is political volatility on a scale not seen much in a lifetime. Received knowing wisdom of the Chuck Todd’s of the world can be thrown out the window. World weary cynics are no guide to terra incognita. Todd, immediately before the vote could not see how Pelosi would abandon the Democratic President!!! He seemed to be doing little more than editorializing as a favor to someone to pressure Pelosi right after Mitchell said the AFL had Pelosi on her side.

      1. Lambert Strether Post author

        I munged the HTML at that link. These are the 40 Democratic traitors who voted for TAA (HR 1314). I don’t see the TPP votes yet.

        1. Ashford
        2. Bass
        3. Bera
        4. Beyer
        5. Blumenauer
        6. Bonamici
        7. Carney
        8. Clyburn
        9. Connolly
        10. Cooper
        11. Costa
        12. Cuellar
        13. Davis (CA)
        14. Delaney
        15. DelBene
        16. Eshoo
        17. Farr
        18. Heck (WA)
        19. Himes
        20. Hoyer
        21. Israel
        22. Johnson, E. B.
        23. Kilmer
        24. Kind
        25. Larsen (WA)
        26. Larson (CT)
        27. Meeks
        28. O’Rourke
        29. Perlmutter
        30. Peters
        31. Polis
        32. Price (NC)
        33. Quigley
        34. Rice (NY)
        35. Richmond
        36. Schrader
        37. Sewell (AL)
        38. Smith (WA)
        39. Wasserman Schultz
      2. Lambert Strether Post author

        And here are the 28 Democratic traitors who voted for TPP:

        1. Ashford 202-225-4155
        2. Bera 202-225-5716
        3. Beyer 202-225-4376
        4. Blumenauer 202-225-4811
        5. Bonamici 202-225-0855
        6. Connolly 202-225-1492
        7. Cooper 202-225-4311
        8. Costa 202-225-3341
        9. Cuellar 202-225-1640
        10. Davis (CA) 202-225-2371
        11. Delaney 202-225-2721
        12. DelBene 202-225-6311
        13. Farr 202-225-2861
        14. Himes 202-225-5541
        15. Hinojosa 202-225-2531
        16. Johnson, E. B. 202-225-8885
        17. Kilmer 202-225-5916
        18. Kind 202-225-5506
        19. Larsen (WA) 202-225-2605
        20. Meeks 202-225-3461
        21. O’Rourke 202-225-4831
        22. Peters 202-225-0508
        23. Polis 202-225-2161
        24. Quigley 202-225-4061
        25. Rice (NY) 202-225-5516
        26. Schrader 202-225-5711
        27. Sewell (AL) 202-225-2665
        28. Wasserman Schultz 202-225-7931

        Readers, I went through this in great haste, so if there are any errors, please add a comment below.

        Also, if you want to call, many offices are closed on the weekend, so it would be best to call now. Get your views heard before they start making more sausage with the phones off the hook.

        1. Propertius

          Fascinating, because Polis has been sending me emails for weeks telling me how bad “fast track” is and how he’d never support it. I’d say more, but this is a family-friendly blog.

          1. Doug

            Big disappointment with this guy. I just took a gander on his website. It appears that he’s an Obot lapdog. There’s an entire section of first order, shallow, fact vs myth type propaganda supporting TPA, TPP, ISDS, etc. He even takes a jab at Senator Warren. After the poor showing of our CO senatorial contingent, I thought there might be some hope with Polis. Wrong!

        2. Weirhaus

          Today’s vote was maddening for this Oregonian: 4 of our state’s 5 House Members have Ds after their names and 3 of them landed on this list (yes, I know: Nike).

          For balance, I’ll also be calling (Monday morning at this point) Rep. DeFazio, whose district I lived in during college and whose public comments Lambert already noted above. 202.225.6416


          1. jrs

            you need to talk to Oregoncharles who comments here, he’s running green party spoilers against all of the Dem traitors in Oregon. If Dems vote for treason, vote Green.

            The intent is to spoil, although ideally the intent is a Green victory. But even if it means a Republican win as Dems lose voters to the Greens, these traitors need to be shown the door.

        3. Carla

          Lambert, I think the votes by Democratic traitors you listed above were for TPA, not TPP.

          If not, then I’m more confused than I thought.

  2. tim s

    both CNN & WaPo have stories posted a few minutes ago at the top of their pages about the failure of TPP, primarily due to the failure of the bill to financially assist displaced workers. Neither article plays up a possibility of TPP still passing.

      1. tim s

        I’m not implying that. Just seeing what way the wind is blowing in the majors. Unless they are trying to placate all of the readers who might have been up in arms on the issue to lull them back to sleep so it can be secretly pushed through next week with nobody looking, I would have expected the editors/publishers to polish the turd a bit better to make it look like it really was a good bill that should have passed.

        1. Lambert Strether Post author

          Well, I am! A newspaper is a big organization, and (IMNSHO) most of the time rolls along collecting ad revenue and writing stories based on corporate culture (or, if you prefer, internalized censorship), and depending on the paper, sometimes do a very good job. We don’t have a system where the editor phones the commissar every day to check the front page layout and what stories to run. But an issue that really causes agita in the elite, the owner/publisher will pick up the phone, and share his views with the editor (and editors write the headlines and control the layout, which is just what you’re describing here). Of course, a good publisher will use a light touch, and a good editor will know when to resist… And I can see TPP being one such issue. But it’s an organic process, not a mechanical one.

  3. ambrit

    Speaking of twirlers in gutters, check this out,
    The Yesterday Machine: https://archive.org/details/TheYesterdayMachine1963
    The first couple of minutes set an almost prescient depiction of todays glamour and angst!
    (The link is to the whole film, which is a ’60s Nazi Mad Scientist romp. So bad, it’s good. Sort of what todays’ elites are trying to convince us of, eh?)

  4. phred

    And now we know why Nancy said she wanted to vote against TAA “in order to slow” TPP rather than stop it. Good to know Nancy, very good to know. And the treachery continues apace…

  5. New Deal democrat

    In re today’s stats watch: 1. Since consumer sentiment sometimes peaks at or near the midpoint of an expansion, I think I can live with the idea that another recession might only be 6 years away. 2. Please feel free to post a 5 year graph of the YOY% change in real retail sales after next week’s CPI report. I have a feeling it will not show any “disturbing decline in annual growth.”

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      This (shitty) expansion is already long in the tooth; another 6 years is highly unlikely. We don’t do assignments; feel free to post whatever charts you like in comments (and then go argue with Mosler, and good luck with that; he makes money with this stuff).

    2. Lambert Strether Post author

      Eyes on Trade press release:

      Today’s outcome is a testament to the strength and diversity of the remarkable coalition of thousands of organizations that overcame a money-soaked lobbying campaign by multinational corporations and intense arm-twisting by the GOP House leadership and the Obama administration. The movement now demanding a new American trade policy is larger and more diverse than in any preceding trade policy fight. It includes everyone from small business leaders and labor unions to Internet freedom advocates and faith groups to family farmers and environmentalists to consumer advocates and LGBT groups to retirees and civil rights groups to law professors and economists.

      Of course it’s not [fill in Utopia here]. But it’s better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick, and there’s no way to get one single step closer to Utopia without exercising your political muscles.

  6. Kim Kaufman

    re: Consumer Sentiment, June 2015: Nancy Pelosi said today on house floor before TPP, etc., votes: the reason for the slow economy is lack of consumer confidence. So perk up, everyone! It’s sure to get better if we do.

    I’m sorry I listened to the live “debates” this morning. It has ruined my day. But, as they say, I’m going to start my day over right now. I feel better already.

        1. craazyboy

          Sure, I like donuts. And if they get all hard and crusty you can throw them at politicians. But I wouldn’t do that to my congress rep. She was an Air Force Academy grad, career fighter pilot, has the western world’s largest tactical missile plant in her district, and is the mostly likely target for McCain’s Demon Spirit to enter when it decides it needs a new body to inhabit.

          1. Lambert Strether Post author

            Well, then I suggest that you lie back in your easy chair and practice your mad donut-tossing skillz. But please don’t entice others in there with you, mkay?

                1. craazyboy

                  I meant it as “positive thinking”… “pull yourself up and soldier on”…that sort of thing. With perhaps a smidgeon of snark.

                  I’m still rooting for Charlie Brown too.

                  1. Lambert Strether Post author

                    Sorry, I reject the whole Lucy and the Football metaphor. Perhaps the game is changed. It’s a big, big deal to give a President a slap in the face like this one.

                    1. craazyboy

                      I was referring to your donut which was referring to my “One of these times Charlie Brown is gonna kick that football.” which was in response to Benedict’s data on citizens losing the last 20 years of votes in Congress.

                      It’s a big deal if Charlie Brown kicks the football too!!!!

                      But sure, this is about the ballsiest move yet they’ve tried, with the whole secrecy thing. So if we can beat it I’d say the country still has a pulse at least.

                      Actually, I think if the TPP passes, we are doomed.

  7. Ed S.


    A huge THANK YOU for all of the time and effort that you have put into the TAA, TPA, and TPP.

    And thanks for posting the list of Dems who voted in favor. Not an assignment — but we should all call our representatives and express our pleasure (for those who voted against) or displeasure as appropriate.

    But it’s not over yet — and I am concerned about the passage of the TPA and that when the TAA comes up again next week it will go through (it feels like 2008 all over again). So let’s all make those calls!

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      Very very little time and effort compared to people doing work on the ground. I’m just an amplifier (though [lambert blushes modestly] perhaps not the worst one in the blogosphere). I’m going through and adding contact and phone number information now.

      1. frosty zoom

        yes, and thanks from moi to thee, for i am just a spectator in this and don’t have a rep. to call. call on!

        1. frosty zoom

          on a side note, comments being accepted or thrust to the ether seem to follow a somewhat haphazardous route.

          i have tried multiple times to respond to your “paygrade” inquiry and all go poof! yet here i am.

          1. Lambert Strether Post author

            I dug the comment out of the spam folder, and while I was there, I noticed that you have a habit of posting multiple times if the first one doesn’t go through (not just this comment, others). DON’T DO THAT. Not only are you training Skynet to think you’re a spammer, because spammers do exactly what you are doing, you are making more work for the moderators. And if you want 24/7 near-real-time commment coverage, feel free to write NC the large check it would cost to cover that, but before you do that, consider whether you’d rather put up with some “haphazardness” or have NC people doing real work.

            1. frosty zoom

              not trying to be bitchy, just trying to help.

              when i multipost, i’m just trying to figure out if there’s a pattern to anything so as to offer a solution.

              i will, thanking you, refrain from said activity.

      2. JohnnyGL

        You’re a reliable amplifier and sometimes it’s hard to know which ones to listen to! Don’t discount that!

  8. frosty zoom

    “This parliamentary maneuvering is above my paygrade.”

    exactly. rinse and repeat till the people tire of it.

    “tpp? but didn’t they vote that down?, clarence murmured as his foreman explained why his nightwatchman gig at the defunct wemakestuff plant outside town was being offshored to brunei.

    but after “amendment” 17,353,498 subsection B passes, the monster (always! “narrowly” to protect the districts that be) squeaks through like a greasy mean octopus rising through your sewage tubes,

    well after anybody remembers whiskey tango foxtrot because they just can’t cope with the shenanigans.

    rinse and repeat.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      And I spend the time to dig a comment out of the queues and its from a guy who wants to lie back in the defeatist easy chair and scarf down depressive donuts. Enjoy.

      Of course they’re going to do try again; we’re not children here, we know that. The question is not what they do, but what we do.

      1. Jess

        Can everybody please stop talking about donuts? I’m pre-diabetic and I really don’t need my salivary glands working overtime because I can’t help thinking about something yummy that I can’t have!

        Thanks. I’m sure you understand.

        1. Lambert Strether Post author

          Well, what do you eat in your easy chair if not donuts?


          I’m using donut (sorry) because I want to make jokes about the big empty space in the middle.


      2. JohnnyGL

        Guy sitting next to me in the office just asked out loud, “What happened to Democrats in the last year or two? They used to go along with Obama on everything, now they don’t listen to him and he’s relying on Republicans.”

        If the “hopeless-and-despair” crowd want to be intellectually lazy and don’t notice when things change, that’s THEIR problem.

        But hey, no war on Syria, no Larry Summers at the Fed, and now TPA/TPP/TAA is in peril. Is it a trend, now?

          1. Gaianne

            When the Russians explained what would happen if the US declared a no-fly zone over Syria two years ago, the US backed off and decided to fund another color revolution in the Ukraine instead.

            The US is still unwilling to do more in Syria than arm and fund proxies (such as the Islamic State aka Da’ash).

            I don’t know what the Russians explained, but I believe it involved NATO aircraft falling out of the sky.


            1. Lambert Strether Post author

              It didn’t fly politically in the US either, and IMNSHO that was the driver. Otherwise, we would have seen ginned up hysteria about Russian threats. And I see the US policy as, in essence, setting the Black Sea and southern Mediterranean on fire, without any particular resolution, and in consequence I don’t see Ukraine and Syria as mutually exclusive.

      3. frosty zoom

        you asked a question. i provided an (yes, cynical) answer. if one does not know his enemy…

        as to arm-chair, doughnut engorging pessimism, i think we all have bouts.

        but i will tell you this, good sir: i have spent countless hours of my time personally addressing these very pacts with a multitude of real life humans, 99% of whom tell me, “oh, what’s that?”, stare at me blankly and then ask me what i think of the playoffs.

        and yet, i blather away, trying to defeat the windmills of indifference i encounter plaguing so many humans, all in the hope that a few more will realize what is being done to them and rise up and bitch.

        so, perhaps, you’ll find that the grumblers here are actually very involved, and grumble here because this is a refuge where at least kindred folk will empathize with their fears and frustrations.

        and again, thank you for your time and electrons.

        1. Lambert Strether Post author

          You’re welcome. “But”…. But grumbling isn’t very helpful, is it? It certainly doesn’t add value to the NC comment section, pleasant as it may be to vent. I, and am sure other readers, would far rather hear about the things that you are involved in, whether succeeding or failing or in process. Grumbling does not inspire to action. But surely action is exactly what is needed, and in fact what you want?

  9. Carolinian

    Under Black Lives Matter, more Paul Street

    The mass incarceration “new Jim Crow” regime is a nationwide phenomenon with primarily Northern origins in the “law and order” campaign and related Drug War that emerged after Jim Crow’s final abolition and in response to the related Black urban uprisings and youth counter-culture that arose in the 1960s. While many members of the Black professional and upper classes (which have expanded significantly since and thanks to the Civil Rights era) can tell disturbing personal stories about white bias and harassment within and beyond the criminal justice system, the “new Jim Crow” and the terrible violence associated with it (including the police killings that have received so much media attention in the last year) are directed mainly at working and lower-class Blacks. Much of the new Black elite is less likely to be arrested, incarcerated, and shot by U.S. criminal justice authorities than the worst-off sections of the white working and lower classes.

    His thesis is that while a Black middle class has been allowed to rise following Civil Rights the blue collar portion of the population–rendered unemployed in the North due to job offshoring–is being kept under control by a kind of off the radar police state.


    Related, from this morning’s Wash Post: how Britain–where most police still carry night sticks–contrasts with the US when it comes to arming the police.


    1. James Levy

      When I lived in Wales in the late 1990s, police still did not carry firearms. They were a reassuring, not a threatening, presence.

      Black working-class people have yet to recover from the mechanization of Southern agriculture. For centuries black Americans performed essential work that supported a whole region and covered the USA’s chronic balance of payments problems. Since the mechanization of agriculture, the US hasn’t had a clue what to do with most black people other than ghettoize and incarcerate them.

  10. Lambert Strether Post author

    Readers, upthread I left contact information and phone numbers for the 28 Democratic traitors who voted to surrender national sovereignty to the Investor-State Dispute Settlement System by voting for TPP. Do feel free to give them a call.

    Note that many of the offices are closed on the weekend, so if you want to share your views before they get down to more sausage making, call today. Thank you!

  11. Jess

    Sorry, but this re-vote next week sounds an awfully lot like the TPA vote in the Senate: No one week, yes the next. The fact that TPA itself passed, albeit by one vote, makes me equally cynical. Fortunately my rep is on the right side of this issue.

    1. Propertius

      Fortunately my rep is on the right side of this issue.

      For now, at any rate. Who knows where he/she will be next week.

      1. Jess

        I think he’s a pretty much unwavering “no”. Have never seen him linked to any list of the wavering or leaning yes crowd. He’s in a safe district but one with an activist history and he could easily get primaried from the left.

  12. Carolinian

    Justin Raimondo in Antiwar on Sanders and Rehm.

    Ms. Rehm issued an official apology, in which she regretted not posing a question rather than making an assertion – and that underscores the problem with the whole issue of public officials holding dual citizenship: they aren’t required to disclose it. Rehm says she brought it up in the first place because of a Facebook comment, which referenced a list of alleged dual US-Israeli citizens in Congress. None of these lists, however, are sourced, a fact the research-challenged Rehm failed to notice. It’s virtually impossible to source such information, however, unless members of Congress are forthcoming with it – which they aren’t.

    So you could look it as Rehm simply getting Sanders to clear the air on an internet rumor. While private citizens don’t have to make such disclosures clearly that doesn’t apply to Presidential candidates.

  13. judabomber

    Just called Congressman Beyer’s office and voiced my displeasure to a young staffer named Darren.

    1. ambrit

      That’s a good question.
      On Culberson, well, it is Texas after all.
      (Around here, if you’re referred to as “Gone to Texas,” that means you’ve run off one step ahead of the Law.)

  14. ScottW

    Thanks for your work on this issue. I too often get depressed about the state of politics, but being a defeatist seems more like a rationalization for doing nothing. Merely calling a rep. & senator is very easy.

    I like this quote from Gandhi: “When I despair, I remember that all through history, the way of truth and love has always won. There have been murderers and tyrants, and for a time they can seem
    invincible. But in the end they always fall. Think of it, always.”

    Life is a work in progress.

    1. ambrit

      My quibble with Gandhi is that, as Keynes remarked, “In the long run, we are all dead.” Equally true, the utopias of peace and love always fall prey to some malignant force. Process is all.

  15. vidimi

    not tpp-related but could be important:
    potential colour revolution alert in guatemala: http://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/jun/12/protesters-guatemala-president-resignation

    Most are from the young, middle-class, smartphone generation, and they organize the leaderless demonstrations through social media. But there are also priests standing shoulder-to-shoulder with businessmen, and students alongside homemakers, in what Guatemala analysts call an unprecedented mass mobilization cutting across socio-economic, political, even class lines.

    1. vidimi

      i know little about the country, though, so maybe this is just democracy in action:

      The president, a 64-year-old retired general, took office in 2012 promising an “iron-fist” crackdown on crime and impunity, but a recent poll by the newspaper Prensa Libre put his approval rate at just 38%.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      Pelosi could still create mischief. One way forward for TPP:

      Give Democrats something they want: Nancy Pelosi’s Dear Colleague letter makes this clear: “The prospects for passage (of fast track) will greatly increase with the passage of a robust highway bill.” This means that, if Republicans vote for more infrastructure spending, Pelosi would be likely to supply the votes for trade. But it’s not clear whether this is coming from Pelosi only, or if it would have buy-in from her caucus. She might be making a deal her caucus hasn’t empowered her to make. Plus, that would involve Republicans in the House and Senate agreeing to fund more infrastructure, and nobody knows where the money would come from.

      In addition, I’d add that not only has the left tasted blood (and for the first time in a very long time), Pelosi (Cersei) must surely have been damaged by this, as much as Obama. Speculating freely, perhaps that was the reason for DeLauro (Margaery)’s “grin” this morning (see above).

      1. Sanctuary

        I’m more interested in comments/observations such as this. I’m not ready to celebrate this win because we all saw how quickly they regrouped and passed that awful TPA in the Senate. I want to know more about possible weasel points such as highway spending where think that’s enough of a sop to buy off the caucus and pass this terrible bill.

        1. Lambert Strether Post author

          I’m into recognizing victory when it happens, but victories are temporary in the nature of the case, and there’s a long road ahead. And yes, the mechanics are very important. Can’t throw sand in the gears if you don’t know where the gears are, or sugar in the gas tank if you can’t find the cap.

        2. Paul Tioxon

          This is a crushing defeat for Obama. There was no regrouping after the TAA to pass the TPP. The House took the Senate bill and broke it into 3 separate pieces to have 3 separate votes. It was structured as a go along to get along tactic, where everyone gets to vote on something they not only want but also can believe in with a clear conscience. All 3 pieces are necessary but only sufficient if all 3 are passed. Trade Assistance Act is the democrat friend of the working man piece that they are supposed to all pile into with a small assist from the few Rs needed to reach a 217 vote count. The dems then can tell the world that the workers have job loss insurance in the form health insurance help, retraining yada yada. The TPA has the fast track authority piece that a mix of corporate Dems and Reps can get behind. Yeah, labor Dems, Libertarian and Tea Party types will vote nay, but are not strong enough together to stop corporate America from getting 217 votes. The 3rd and final piece, The Trade Facilitation and Customs Enforcement Act passes with the most votes, 240, as it is not going to be that hard defend come election time.

          But since one vote failed, they all failed, hence Boehner requests to reconsider or revote. The maneuver allows two legislative days to have the reconsider vote, meaning by this Tuesday.

          This legislative tactic is similar to gerrymandering. By breaking a bill up into parts and compartmentalizing by political issue based upon party voting blocs, to get along with their good colleagues and save face back in the home district, they vote for a custom tailored piece of legislation that fits their traditional voting records. The rest of the legislation, filled with toxic political content is voted against, thereby preserving what political litmus test, purity oath or loyalty to party ideals are needed to get re-elected. The bill in this case, TPA, had enough corporate types to pass from both parties. This allows campaign donors to be appeased. “The Base” of both parties keep populists in line, but there are not enough right now to monkey wrench like the TAA was.

          Remember when Obama saw immigration passing last year? Remember how he said he would take the bill all at once or if it was EASIER FOR THE REPUBLICANS, he would take piece by piece? Remember the knowing nods of approving inside the beltway reporters so sure it was going to pass? The same tactic would have been employed by Boehner, to break the bill into bite size pieces for this moderate group and that Tea Party group. Except there are so many reps that have come to DC not go along to get along, but to shut down the federal government, period, end of story. The old received wisdom doesn’t work due to the radical change in the make up of the elected Rs. And now, a lot of Dems are not going along with the Prez, so much so that the enduring leader of the Dems, Nancy Pelosi opposed the TAA as a tactic to slow down fast track. She is more old school and wants to horse trade just as the Rs threatened a shut down to extract what they wanted. But the Dems who wild catting now prove to be too unpredictable even for Pelosi. This break up of the whole bill to get you to vote for the parts that make you look good and vote against the bills so you look like you are steely opposition has a flaw that Dems have organized. If you persist in not voting for what you are supposed to vote for as a Dem, and the Rs are too violently opposed to its content, it will never ever pass no matter what horse trading goes on. That explains the 2 to 1 margin of defeat. The Wild Cat Dems organized to kill it and the Rs hate giving social safety net money to anybody for anything. There are only a few corporate elected officials left but not enough to push this through. The bill is stuck in this format. It can be reconsidered all you want, but assistance is always going to mean welfare for lazy bums that can’t hold onto a job or spend more than 10 minutes between jobs. And the rest of the bill is Medicare cuts, environmental protection roll backs to the Guilded Age and jobs losses that are implied by offering the TAA help to workers at all.

      2. JerseyJeffersonian

        In my call to my Representative’s office this morning, I made a special point of recommending that Pelosi & her broke-ass bunch of Third Way assholes be shown the door insofar as leadership positions; ‘cuz out here in Flyover Country, now apparently defined as anywhere outside of NYC or DC, we are getting pretty fed up with the constancy of the betrayals of OUR interests.

      3. jrs

        Nancy Pelosi’s highway to H3#%, we’re on the highway to ….

        But it is a nice little piece of pork for everyone’s district.

      4. DPS

        It’s part of an incremental ‘Grand Bargain.’

        Pelosi will get infrastructure funding (the highway bill) in exchange for the hundreds of millions of dollars of Medicare cuts.

        IOW, I ‘believe’ that they prefer the “pay-for”–Medicare cuts–to go for infrastructure spending, rather than for funding to help workers. (but Dems naturally don’t want to say that)

        And I expect this to be a part of each “deal” struck between the two Parties, indefinitely–cuts to entitlements or non-discretionary spending, in exchange for discretionary monies/spending sought by the Administration.

        1. jrs

          Well if it subsidizes the car, oil, and real estate industry (building those far out suburbs that now need infrastructure) it must be good.

          Really the left never should have gotten on the infrastructure bandwagon, “lets just have government stimulate the economy with infrastructure and shovel ready burial plots projects”. In a very different world where infrastructure meant renewable energy and conservation and so on and was shown to be a net positive for the planet maybe. We don’t live there. In the world we actually do live in infrastructure just makes very good, almost irresistible, pork since it’s well distributed.

          And now we get infrastructure over Medicare and infrastructure over sovereignty. I kind of hope someone destroys their new roads.

          1. tegnost

            in all honesty i think it depends on who is running the project, and what their objective …infrastructure is the lefts bandwagon,… if endless (literally) amounts of infrastructure investments can be made so profitably in the financial sector then why not on the places you use, you have to pay to go hiking are the trails that no longer get trail crew…are they better now… new roads nowadays seem to be toll roads wealthy people and bidnesses can use to avoid the traffic jams also currently infrastructure means bonds which means fees so the unpleasant feeling you get from the term infrastructure may stem from the misapplication of the objective, you are posing infrastructure as bad because banksters take so much of the money, and when you pay a bankster the money disappears from your universe and you get the minimum of infrastructure, so infrastructure is the wrong demon

  16. abynormal

    Antonio Torres a Miami police officer shot Fritz Severe, a homeless man 5 times in front of 40 to 60 children attending a summer camp Thursday morning, according to local media. The homeless man, who was holding a metal stick, was allegedly shot five times after refusing to comply with officers demands for him to drop it. He was transported to a nearby hospital where he died from his injuries.
    Two officers were dispatched to the scene with a report of a violent dispute. A nearby library had called the police in order to remove the homeless man because he was brandishing a stick, witnesses said.
    Officer Antonio Torres will be placed on administrative leave, said Miami Police Chief Rodolfo Llanes, according to local media. One witness claims that the homeless man was well-known in the neighborhood and always carried a stick, reports the Miami Herald.
    Natalia Zea a news anchor for Miami’s CBS 4 tweeted that witnesses said that the homeless man did have a stick, but never lunged or made a move towards the officers.

    Where justice is denied, where poverty is enforced, where ignorance prevails, and where any one class is made to feel that society is an organized conspiracy to oppress, rob and degrade them, neither persons nor property will be safe.
    Frederick Douglass

  17. optimader

    The Grafton saxophone, in spite of the notoriety gained from its use by Charlie Parker and Ornette Coleman, failed to gain acceptance among professional saxophone players due to a variety of reasons.

    The acrylic plastic used for the body is brittle, resulting in an extremely fragile instrument. Any component parts made of plastic can easily crack, fracture or snap off during normal use. Not only do Graftons use a non-standard spring mechanism to operate the action, but spare parts are unavailable.[4] Not surprisingly, Graftons are challenging and expensive to overhaul or repair when compared to saxophones made entirely of metal e.g. Selmer or Conn.[5]

    The mechanical action of Graftons has an unusual “spongy” feel to it, without the quick, “snappy”, positive feel of other more conventional saxophone actions, which was disconcerting to players.[6]

    The plastic body and bell of the Grafton, while attaining the general characteristics of a saxophone sound, imparted sound qualities that flipped between dullness and harshness and made it incompatible with section work.[7] The harsh aspect of the Grafton’s sound was used for artistic effect by Ornette Coleman on his album, The Shape of Jazz to Come.

    For these reasons, and their comparative rarity, it is unusual to see a Grafton being played by performers in the 21st century. As a general rule, Graftons are now regarded purely as collectors’ items i.e. for display purposes only. This is because they are fragile and very easy to damage, which detracts from their monetary value.

  18. jo6pac

    It’s nothing to worry about with a another vote next week that will give the we collect everything people (NSA) plenty of time to explain to those hold outs why they will vote yes next time.

    See everything is on schedule, there nothing to worry about. Please move along.

    1. RWood

      Um, do nut.n.
      So clean crumbs and hoist another.

      Jade Helm 15 is not a joke and must be taken seriously. Mock invasions, mock terrorist manhunts, shootouts, and roundups are not jokes. They are reminders that in the Global War On Terror (GWOT) being a US citizen doesn’t matter. Because in the eyes of the State, everyone is a suspect, everyone must stand up against war and war practice. The last shreds of democracy are at stake.

  19. Anon

    So the goal is to get it repealed/have the Congresscritters hit summer recess (which is like two months) and then we put their backs to the wall with a continued effort, right? I would personally love to see a reading of it out on the floor. I’d watch C-Span live that day.

  20. Sanctuary

    Re: Black Injustice Tipping Point

    Tangential to this overall topic, has anyone else realized that it seems like when these police incidents have happened, the only locales where you’ve seen some kind of justice have been the Southern ones? Think about it. Two in South Carolina, the latest in Mckinley, one I think even in Florida. As much as I can’t believe I’m saying this, it seems like the cops in the South are being held accountable much more than in Northern cities. I can’t name a single Northern incident where ANY kind of justice took place. Maybe Baltimore, but that’s still up in the air because of a lack (yet) of an indictment.

        1. Lambert Strether Post author

          And in a perfect world, we’d see the geographic distribution of verdicts. Hmmm. Wouldn’t be hard to do with the right data sources (and that’s the hard part).

    1. Carolinian

      The article I linked above talks a bit about how racial stresses moved North after the blacks who had fled the Jim Crow period lost their jobs to offshoring. This led to a very militant response which seems to continue. Another factor might be that proportionately there are just a lot more blacks in the South than the North. SC had the highest slave percentage before the Civil War and still has about 30 percent black residents. In Maine it is half of a percent and In NY about 15 percent (many of those no doubt in NYC).

      So this means both greater propinquity and perhaps greater deference to African American sensitivities. In my memory there have been rows about the confederate flag over the capitol building in Columbia (now moved to a flagpole out back) and publicity for some diehard lost cause cranks but that seems to be fading. Prejudice is just bad for business and these days SC is all about business. Now if those AA residents were to try to start a union then all bets would be off.

      1. JTMcPhee

        Was it Dick Gregory who observed about blacks (a categorization that ought to offend, given the richness of melanized skin tones and the ridiculous Manichaean apposition to us “white folk” so many of whom have African ancestors and whose skin tones include pink and sallow yellows and olive and dead-body grays), “Up north, they don’t care how big you get, as long as we don’t get too close. Down south, they don’t care how close we get, as long as we don’t get too big.” Worked for Obama…

        1. Carolinian

          That’s a funny and sharp observation. I’m not saying there’s no prejudice but down South the races do have a long history of living together and–since Civil Rights changes–even to some degree respecting each other. My town did have a black mayor for awhile even though it’s majority white.

    2. geoff

      Well, Baltimore is in the south (its northern border is the Mason-Dixon line), so here’s hopin’.

    3. BDBlue

      Even re Baltimore, Maryland is a former slave state that really only went union because it was essentially occupied (and gave us, of course, John Wilkes Booth). My history professor once said that in figuring out who was “Southern”, in terms of culture and mentality, it was helpful to look at those states who were only part of the U.S. because of the use of force. In that sense, I think Baltimore may be Southern or at least not Northern. And the Baltimore officers have been indicted.

  21. danny

    I think the EFF also has a good run down about the vote today and the parliamentary moves: https://www.eff.org/deeplinks/2015/06/house-deals-major-blow-obamas-secret-anti-user-trade-agenda

    The fight is far from over. “If the TAA fails next week, then Fast Track will move back to the Senate to see if it can pass without TAA—giving us another chance to oppose it.
    Now it’s going to take somewhat of a miracle for the President and House Republicans to change their mind on TAA by such a large margin (around 180 votes) by Tuesday—that’s their deadline on holding that second TAA vote. But we know that the White House and proponents of these secretive, undemocratic agreements are willing to do almost anything to pass these deals with even less oversight from Congress.”

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      180 votes would be a big turnaround. I don’t have time to research the turnaround on TARP, when Obama’s magical powers were at their height; does anyone have any ideas?

      1. djrichard

        I think congress flipping on TARP was a simple case of a marketing campaign of FUD (fear uncertainty and doubt) which wasn’t nullified. For instance, nobody put forward a viable vision of what a positive outcome would have been without TARP. That gave congressman breathing space to portray themselves as doing the responsible thing. I don’t see a similar campaign being successful this time around. If anything the FUD seems to be going against TPP; don’t let up on that.

        More broadly, don’t let up in your tactics. They’ve succeeded this far. Besides, it’s the ol “control what you can, and let go of the rest”.

  22. Oregoncharles

    “Greek contagion enters Mr. Market’s lower backbrain.”
    Clever – but aren’t you really just tracking random jiggles?

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      I am told by people who follow the bond market — remember that Jim Carville wanted to come back as the bond market? — that no, the squiggles are not random. (If I were quicker and smarter, I would be comparing spreads between different bonds, and if I can work out a quick way to do that, I will.)

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