Links 8/23/15

Baby panda: Washington zoo’s Mei Xiang delivers cub BBC

Something Is Still Ridiculously Wrong NASDAQ

Stocks’ nasty drop has market watchers chattering over weekend  WSJ

What has gone wrong for emerging markets? FT

How debt threatens to undermine China’s growth miracle South China Morning Post. At the local government level (i.e., think about real estate).

Poisonous connections The Economist. “So a company with an opaque ownership structure, connected by family ties to a port official under investigation, was helped by an order signed by another man under investigation to expedite its handling of dangerous chemicals. On August 20th the death toll from the blast stood at 114.”

What has gone wrong for emerging markets? FT

Jeff Bezos, Amazon, and the Lack of Profits CEPR. Before there were pirates like Travis Kalanick, there was Jeff Bezos. Whenever you hear “disruption” or “innovation,” think “plunder.”

Life sciences slated as first Alphabet spin-out after Google reorg Fierce Medical Devices (Furzy Mouse)

The Real State of Unemployment Economic Populist


Why Donald Trump Won’t Fold: Polls and People Speak NYT. Analysis of likely primary voters from… Civis Analytics, a Democratic polling firm.

Trump Change: Is Donald Trump Broke? The Alpha Pages (Furzy Mouse).

Glenn Beck: Trump is not conservative The Hill. Naturally not. Trump is polymorphous perverse; the id knows nothing of such categories as “conservative.”

Donald Trump, Alabama and the ghost of George Wallace Politico. Trump didn’t fill the venue. Even though Alabama high school football hasn’t started.

Alabama tried a Donald Trump-style immigration law. It failed in a big way. WaPo

This Is How Bernie Sanders Could Win FiveThirtyEight

First on CNN: Biden meets with Warren in Washington CNN. I know what the numbers on Clinton say. But insiders are acting like they don’t believe those numbers matter. And 442 days is a long time in politics. 

Letter From David Kendall to State Department on Hillary Clinton’s email use Scribd

Hillary Clinton Will Interrupt Vacation to Campaign in Midwest NYT. On the email:

The topic does not typically come up in Mrs. Clinton’s wide-ranging town hall-style meetings, where voters ask her about everything from criminal justice reform to whether they can get a hug. (“Sit down right there, and when I finish my Q. and A., I will give you that hug, I promise,” she told the woman.)

This would seem to replicate the Clinton strategy of 2008, which was successful with voters, at least.

Some big 2008 Obama supporters on new list of Iowa Women for Hillary Bleeding Heartland

Could A Middle-Aged White Man Ever Become President? GQ. David Simon, maybe.

 DCCC Up To Their Old, Failed Tricks In IL-08 Down with Tyranny

Canadian Election

Why Political Reporters Should Be Covering the Canadian Election Instead National Journal

Margaret Atwood’s National Post Column Mocking Harper’s Hair Disappears, Reappears HuffPO

Canada: NDP ahead in polls while Liberals closer to Conservatives Digital Journal

Tom Mulcair defends praise for Margaret Thatcher’s ‘winds of liberty and liberalism’ CBC

Electric in a crowd, guarded in private, Justin Trudeau sticks to his script Montreal Gazette

Campaign Notebook: Harper’s Critics Anger at Least One Canadian Bloomberg

Poll: most Canadians don’t believe Harper on Duffy scandal Toronto Star. Apparently, fiddling one’s expense accounts passes for scandal in Canada.

3 American friends tackle and hogtie gunman aboard European train WaPo. Actually, two Americans and one Brit. Sadly, they weren’t armed, or they would have been able to shoot out some windows and whack an innocent passenger or two.


Greece and the Global Sell-Off WSJ

Greece’s creditors demand casino rights, archaeological sites, selloff of EUR50B of national assets Boing Boing

Eurogroup Chair Dijsselbloem Supports Greek PM’s Decision for Elections Greek Reporter

SYRIZA rebels clash with gov’t as parties prepare to draft candidate lists Ekathimerini

European hard-left looks to Varoufakis amid Greek turmoil France24. Let us know how that works out.

Macedonia Allows Migrants to Cross Border From Greece WSJ

German finance ministry experts see budget surplus this year: Spiegel Reuters

The Corbyn calamity Politico. By a biographer of — wait for it — Tony Blair.

White House in Chilcot ‘cover-up’: America bans crucial files that could reveal secret of why Blair invaded Iraq Daily Mail. Handy for the Blairites!

The War That Congress Won’t Declare The Atlantic

PLO chief Mahmoud Abbas quits leadership post Al Arabiya

The Bangkok Bombing Blame Game Foreign Policy

Almost No One Sided with #GamerGate: A Research Paper on the Internet’s Reaction to Last Year’s Mob Superheroes in Racecars

Will 5G Kill Free WiFi? Motherboard

Anti-privacy unkillable super-cookies spreading around the world – study The Register

Faith-Based Intellectual Property UCLA Law Review

Nobel Physicist Frank Wilczek: ‘The World is a Piece of Art’ Der Spiegel

From Port to Port Foreign Affairs. “How Colonialism Shaped Music As We Know It.”

A great critique of Rational Expectations Noahpinion

MIT, Harvard find ‘master switch’ behind obesity Boston Business Journal. Awesome. Heavy on the High Fructose Corn Syrup, Mom!

Antidote du jour:


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. Herky

    Lambert, why the snark about the guys on the train? Seems uncharacteristically poor form coming from you.

      1. Synapsid

        Attaboy, Lambert: standing up for members of the cheapshot squad everywhere.

        Read the comments, and note the variety of approaches employed in attempts to find something redeemable in your own comment. If that doesn’t tell you anything then it’s time to fold your tent and silently steal away.

      2. Yonatan

        Yup, yet another individual well known to the security services manages to acquire weapons and ammunition and carry out an attack. If this story had run its normal course, he would have ended up dead himself, with some shadowy accomplice making his/her way to, say, Syria and disappearing without a trace.

        No matter what the real questions are, the answer is as always, more surveillance, more security.

      3. Vatch

        I agree. In Lambert’s comment there is absolutely no disrespect to the heroes on the train. The snark is directed towards some people off-stage: Iago’s epigones in the NRA.

        1. Olivier

          What infuriates me is that the WaPo idiots are calling for the airport security circus to be extended to train stations and that we will undoubtedly get something like it, ruining one form of transportation that had remained pleasant.

          Note, though, that this is already the case in some countries or on some trains, e.g., in Spain (all high-speed lines) and on the Eurostar.

      4. Tim Mason

        Actually, one Frenchman – first to tackle but beaten off – three Americans, and, piling in last, one Brit. Congratulations and thanks to all. A fifth player was the mayor of the local town who went round handing out medals to everyone. Clochemerle lives on.

      5. Furzy Mouse

        Your intent was clear dear Lambert….but it was too harsh, I believe…after all, it was truly heroic what they did!! I’ve thought of it myself….would I have the nerve to try to tackle the guy pointing a kalashnikov at everyone? This is the question we all need to ask ourselves…not to grouse about the media and medals…

      6. Roger Bigod

        Commisuration to Lambert, who must be seething over the Legion of Honor award. I certainly agree that it would have been better if they’d had guns to whack some innocent passangers. But I’m still inclined to buy their bumper sticker.

        1. Lambert Strether Post author

          Why would I seeth? I’m happy for them (though I’ll probably not be so happy at the use that is made of the story). And I’m even happier that they were able to perform their act of heroism without the ammosexual’s consumer fetish object of choice. Full of win, say I.

  2. abynormal

    Frank Wilczek: ‘The World is a Piece of Art’: I’m convinced that art and science activate the same parts of the brain. The brain rewards us for interacting with beautiful things.

    …making Yves my favorite deliverer of Good Will

    1. abynormal

      speaking of which…what is that beautiful creature hovering above us ?
      “Four legs good, two legs bad.” Orwell

      good will & you too Lambert (blush)

        1. prostratedragon

          And its caption is, “Now about this ‘karma’ thing …”

          (It is indeed rather cute.)

  3. Herky

    Lambert- why the snark about the guys on the train? Seems uncharacteristically poor form coming from you.

    1. ambrit

      Lambert is staunchly anti firearms. He is deploying the snark to deplore gun nuttery of all kinds. (One of the pro gun movements’ biggest “arguments” is that an armed citizenry will compel civility. Even gun nuts will concede that this argument is questionable.) I also suspect that Lambert is working on the assumption that raillery and mockery subvert ones’ opponents. This way, the Overtons’ Window can be moved.
      I see this as a missed opportunity for the anti gun crowd. These three people tackled and disarmed the gunman, being unarmed themselves. What more potent image of futility can one find? An armed man felled by a cooperative unarmed group.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        Team Blue is deeply intertwined with being anti-gun which means the basic problem is Democratic elite want an election issue and don’t really care. Chuck Schumer gave a wonderful example this Schumer with staunch opposition to the Iran deal and his “anti-gun” announcement with his cousin.

        Schumer won’t point this out because it’s not his goal. Democrats couldn’t even hold a floor vote on expanded background checks after Sandy Hook. Reid and Pelosi are still in positions of leadership. Anti-firearms advocates need to function as outsiders, or Team Blue will continue to treat us like dirt.

        Besides very little was made of Flight 93 after 9/11. The other planes’ passengers thought they were being held hostage. When the Flight 93 passengers learned what happened, they acted.

        1. Lambert Strether Post author

          I don’t care about it as an election issue and I’m not on Team Blue. I accept that the country is awash in guns, that the discourse about it is irredeemably corrupt, and that nothing can be done. That’s why I don’t bring the topic up in the electoral context, as opposed to a media or cultural critique.

      2. Jagger

        Those people were very lucky the weapon didn’t fire.

        —-“It’s a miracle the attack failed. I think his gun was jammed.”—-

        —-“Spencer ran a good 10 meters to get to the guy, and we didn’t know that his gun wasn’t working or anything like that. Spencer just ran anyway, and if anyone would’ve gotten shot it would’ve been Spencer, for sure,”

        A non-functioning weapon is not much better than no weapon at all. If the weapon had worked properly, the story could have ended very differently.

        1. ambrit

          What infuriates me about ‘modern’ journalism is its’ fallen standards. Only at the very end of the story do we learn that someone was indeed shot. No identification of who, or how badly hurt they were. Just a shadowy Frenchman who surprised the gunman as he was preparing to act, and was shot for his trouble. One of the subduers helped the wounded person, who was bleeding from the neck, according to a witness.
          The criminal had a handgun and an AK. No word on which had been fired.
          The real story is the Zen like focus of the non criminal actors in this to prevent the crime.
          The body of the article, if I may observe, is the extent of Europes’ lack of a fully functional transportation “security directorate.” This seems to have been taken as an opportunity to drum up some fear and anxiety in support of a more intrusive and authoritarian Euro Stasi.
          If anyone were to mention how ineffective Americas Transportation Security Administration is to the Europeans, why, who knows? It might turn out to have been a Commie Plot!!!

          1. andyb

            The worst about the WAPO article is that is doesn’t really mention that the authorities have been tracking the shooter for months and that the fact he was carrying an AK was too obvious to the US service personnel, but apparently not to anyone in the French populace???? Methinks this was just another false flag attempt a la Charlie Hebdo.

          2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            Zen as in Zen flesh and Zen bones.

            Zen flesh is ‘go with the flow,’ and ‘what is is.’

            Zen bones refer to the rules – up at 5 o’clock for meditation. Why? Just because and you better do it, or else.

            We need a bit of both, positive and negative, yin and yang. And here, negative does not have to mean bad. Positive and negative are just two complementary sides of the same reality.

            You may say, there is yin and yang in ‘yin,’ and also yin and yang in ‘yang.’ I look at as everything having both yin and yang. The two views are not exactly the same, but in practice, they are.

            Back to negativity – we may have to use a different word, such is the bane of language. We are both negative and positive, and are both aggressive and passive and a happy balance is achieved when we harmonize both.

            For example, the soldiers could have done a Gandhi non-violence resistant hunger strike on the gunmen. That would be very yin. And that works on certain situations. Or you have use force against force, as was done here.

            So, aggressiveness and passivity – both are open to us for our own bliss.

            Nothing inherently good or bad about passivity. Female animals being smaller and weaker have to be passive and cooperating. Male animals being smaller and weaker than the alpha male have to be passive and cooperating. It’s the Lotus – as they say in Buddhism, it grew out of mud, but blooms most beautifully (or something like that). The world is out of balance – too much me-me-me and so, we have to balance it with cooperation and sharing (again, me-me-me is not all at, but it needs be balanced).

            In sum,

            It’s not this
            It’s not that
            It’s not neither
            and it’s not both.

            1. cwaltz

              Not ALL female species are smaller than their male counterparts. I also reject the idea that being smaller means you have to be passive. Being small can mean you are able to move faster than your opponent and it means you are a smaller target. The reason many women are passive is because society has taught it(particularly in religious circles) and many choose to go with the flow instead of question it.

              Again, I realize that you aren’t trying to present the female in a negative manner and I do agree with you that the world would be a better place if people learned to share and cooperate, I just disagree with the idea that things like nurturing and cooperation are feminine. I think we might have a more balanced world if women choose to be a little more aggressive and men were taught that they do have the same natural capacity to cooperate and share.

              1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

                You hit the nail right on the head.

                Perhaps it’s due to the words I use.

                To me, small, less, slow, passive, soft, dark, pliable, etc. are good in the sense their opposites are also good or desirable (to avoid discrimination between good and not good – it’s a Zen thing about words and concepts). These also include what we describe as positive and negative. We should not avoid something that’s negative – negative ions, negative charges – when they simply mean the other side, the complementary side, of the same reality. They all exist for us to balance out and for the appropriate situations.

                And as you point out, some male animals or plants can be smaller relative to their female counterparts.

                Male animals can also be smaller than their alpha males.

                And that shows that we all can be small and passive, men and women, and a good evolutionary strategy is to share and to cooperate, among the small and passive people, if not chimps, without giving up our aggressiveness, as we realize the benefits of harmonizing and balancing the complementary aspects of ourselves.

                So, we cooperate and share, but also understand we need time and privacy for ourselves, from time to time.

                And I will try to avoid the word ‘feminine,’ and stick with ‘yin’ which is associated with water, darkness, yielding, etc., qualities that can be found in both men and women. And I hope our institutions can be more tolerant, open-minded, caring and compassionate, avoiding, again, words like matriarchy.

            2. flora

              : Male animals being smaller and weaker than the alpha male have to be passive and cooperating. …”

              Or smarter.
              Think of Brer Fox and Brer Rabbit.

          3. Kurt Sperry

            I took the same train last year and there were uniformed men and dogs sent through the train at least once between Amsterdam and Paris. Some had sidearms too, although I suspect they were mostly looking for people taking a few grams of cannabis out of NL. When officials wearing sidearms walk down the narrow train aisle the weapons are disconcertingly exposed as well, I would have been more comfortable if they’d been unarmed. I sure hope the security theater business is never turned loose on rail travel to the extent it is for airplanes, They do that and anyone wanting to act out like that will just take their crazy to a big city metro where airport-type security is literally impossible or even just to a crowded street. Train travel remains a far more civilized experience than air travel.

        2. John Merryman

          Fwiw, One reason automatics seem to jam is because the clip is made out of pressed sheet metal and the inner edge of the clip will be a little rough, if it isn’t filed smooth. Which will grab the bullet enough to stop the spring loading, but the first round being slapped in by hand would overcome this. So he got one round off and the second jammed. Likely a new clip that had never been fired through.

        3. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          Would victims are thankful, heroes or not.

          A reminder – don’t try this at home. The soldiers are professionals. (end of sarcasm).

      3. Bridget

        There were three Americans, all friends, and one Brit. Two of the three Americans (with military training) charged and took down a would be terrorist as he was attempting to get an AK-47 into firing position. The third American was their non-military college student friend, who helped them “subdue” the terrorist once he was disarmed. (Beat him unconscious is what they did, and good for them) The Brit, aged 62, helped them hog tie the “subdued” terrorist up.) One of the young Americans was stabbed in the neck with box cutters, (the terrorist was armed with the AK, a handgun, box cutters and a lot of ammunition) but has been released from the hospital. After subduing and hog-tying the terrorist, and being stabbed in the neck himself, this young man then turned to administer first aid to an unnamed French citizen who also received a box cutter to the neck in the melee.

        Had these brave young men (dare I say……heroes) been a few seconds later getting off their marks, they and dozens, perhaps hundreds, of others would have been dead or wounded. Less an anti-gun argument and more a pro military training argument, I would say. I can’t see a random group of geezers on a train taking down a guy holding an AK47 in his hands.

        1. Jagger

          I am hearing on the radio that it wasn’t a terrorist attack but a robbery attempt?!?! Too early to say now.

          Also the radio is not mentioning the Brit or Frenchman involved in resisting the armed individual, only the three Americans.

    2. Brooklin Bridge

      As a guess, objection to full blown hero and terrorism worship much like cowboys and Indians. I doubt Lambert has anything against the individuals that subdued the criminal, but rather against the whole attitude and press that glorifies that sort of episode over focusing, for instance, on why “terrorists” in the first place.

      1. Lambert Strether Post author

        Well, that’s the other thing. I think — obviously — the acts of the people themselves were terrific, but you can see the narratives this can be used to reinforce coming a mile off. (As well as the narratives that are being erased, especially blowback.)

      1. Herky

        Wasn’t intending to double post- the first post didn’t show up immediately (a first in my posting experience) so I posted again. Respectfully, as I trust what a giant pain WordPress can be and you guys are working your tails off- which is why I’m a contributor- not knowing if comments are going to show up immediately, await moderation, or be lost forever isn’t helpful for commenters.

  4. Patricia Marino

    The abstract — and title — for “Faith-Based Intellectual Property” suggests that somehow utilitarianism is rational and that other moral values are mere emotion or “faith.” But this is mistaken. Utilitarian reasoning, in which we do the action that brings about the best consequences overall, is both ethically value-laden and morally controversial. Almost all practical ethical systems — such as those in bioethics or politics — appeal to multiple values such as justice, respect for personal autonomy, and rights to individual liberty. All of these values are incompatible with utilitarian reasoning. If support for IP is grounded in one of these values this is perfectly sensible. To imply, as the author does in the paper, that thinking of IP rights as “moral rights” is “faith-based” is misleading.

  5. Edward Qubain

    “White House in Chilcot ‘cover-up’: America bans crucial files that could reveal secret of why Blair invaded Iraq”

    I am waiting to find out if Bush made the same “Gog and Magog” argument to Blair that he tried on Chirac.

    In “European hard-left looks to Varoufakis amid Greek turmoil ” I noticed the new party was referred to as “radical leftist” which is the language the media use whenever a “leftist” isn’t a center-right corporatist.

  6. craazyboy

    It’s hard to make money nowadays, especially with markets crashing. But I just had an idea. Buy up all the Ayn Rand novels at the used book store for $3 and sell ’em to Chinese Robber Barons. Should be able to get $30 easy. There’s a 10 bagger right there!

  7. Llewelyn Moss

    OT Social Security and ID Theft exposure

    Found out that when you signup for SocSec, they assign you a claim number used for future communications with the SocSec Admin. The claim number is your SocSec Number. Now all a crook has to do is steal a piece of mail and you can kiss your identity goodbye. [Facepalm]

    1. Brooklin Bridge

      This brings up a more general issue about how stunningly the inherent security, privacy and technical weaknesses of the net in particular but really software in general are simply hand waived away as if they didn’t exist. One might as well put it under the heading of “Why bother hiding the looting anymore; just go for it.”

      Software projects have always been plagued by two particular issues that crop up with embarrassing frequency given the resources applied:

      1) Performance issues (including scalability)
      2) Main functionality failures

      This is by no means an exhaustive list, but is quite enough for what I’m getting at.

      By main functionality, I mean important or “main” features of a given product frequently fail to work as intended to such an extent that they significantly reduce the product’s value or even call the product itself into question. More often than many would like to admit, such failures are either impossible or impractical to address. Sometimes the problem can be resolved in subsequent releases, but other times, the effort required is simply prohibitive.

      In either case, in fact in all of the above, it has become almost a reflex of management and now basically everyone involved (such as the government) to address these issues by redefining the product rather than fixing the issue. Even entirely outside of the project, even outside the software industry, it has become similarly reflexive for business and government to simply ignore major flaws in the entire digital system, such as in the SS security example, because it suits their purpose – the stampede to get away from human processing (not to mention how this meshes with efforts at privatization of public services).

      An interesting example of this rather nasty phenomenon is the way Google and others are addressing the legal implications of driver-less cars. They have come up against the reality that these products are going to result in accidents; the software simply can’t handle the load or the complexity of the task, even with massively expensive publicly paid “cheats” that have to be installed in any road system used by automated vehicles. Instead of going back to the drawing board or better yet throwing up their hands and admitting it will have to wait for better technology, or best of all moving to public transportation where solutions are far more realistic, they have come up with a (I suspect totally arbitrary) number, 80%, that they claim will be the amount of traffic accidents reduced by automated driving. And they further waive away the problem of liability by saying that such a dramatic reduction of accidents (that they and their lobbyists project) calls for No Fault insurance paid for, no doubt, by considerable increases in the cost to the consumer.

      The craziness of such projects and brazen hand waving away of the holes and limits of technology is perfectly mirrored in the craziness of the political candidates we are presented with every four years.

  8. nippersdad

    So Nate Silver et al give Sanders a 2-5% chance at the nomination? All things being equal, maybe. Liberal candidates traditionally only garner up to 17% of the vote. I think, however, that there is a pent up appetite for change that the Obama Administration has now spent years frustrating.

    Clinton will never drop out before the Primaries and a Biden run would split the establishment vote in favor of Sanders, hence the angling for a Warren endorsement or even VP slot, but why would Warren even consider lending her influence to the Senator from MBNA when her star is in the ascendant with liberals? That would trash her brand. Were Clinton the nominee in a traditional establishment 50 plus one contest, what would the potential liberal undervote look like to the average Democratic voter? Painted in shades of Nader (accurate or not), would it be perceived as presenting the imminent threat of a Trump Presidency? People of color are not the only must-have coalition members within the Party, and Sanders is in no position to actually deliver their votes as long as the traditional options of voting for the Greens or just staying home remain viable. Will BLM endorse anyone? etc, etc.

    I see more schismatic problems for the establishment than 538 does. I would give him more like a thirty to forty percent chance at this point.

    Interestingly, they do not mention turmoil in the markets, which would be attributed to Democratic/neoliberal establishment mismanagement. Right now, the markets looking as they do, that is practically political malpractice. One bad scene, the prospect of having to bail out the same banks again, and I suspect that Silvers’ numbers would change pretty quickly. They underestimate just how angry people really are, and there is a lot of time left before the first caucuses or primaries.

    1. Carolinian

      In his latest Counterpunch Paul Street offers up this quote

      Expecting a presidential campaign to solve the problem of organization is magical thinking…. If America is the land of the get-rich-quick scheme, the American left is the province of the get-power-quick scheme. It’s always looking for the one tactic, the one protest, the one election that will change everything. [In reality, however], Building power that’s strong and flexible takes years in the trenches developing organization, trust, community, leadership, action, and theory. Taking an electoral shortcut to power means fracturing movements as those with the least power are pushed to the sidelines. Leftists may thrill at finding a ‘socialist’ horse on the electoral merry-go-round, but if they hop on board they’ll be the ones taken for a ride” (emphasis added).

      While I have nothing against Sanders, I do agree with Street that putting one’s faith in any individual politician is a form of “magical thinking.” In the 60s it was Bobby Kennedy who would save us and more recently Obama got the rock star treatment until he did in fact win election and the Left that was going to “make him do it” did no such thing.

      And if the economy crashes then it’s just as likely that Donald Trump might be elected and if that appears absurd then see the above NYT poll.The public is desperately looking for “none of the above” and on that basis Trump could just seem the better bet.

      Whether or not one agrees that Presidential politics is only a distraction Street’s argument is worth a look.

      1. Brooklin Bridge

        The American Left doesn’t have a monopoly on this kind of magical thinking as evidenced by Trump (not to mention Las Vegas).

        1. Andrew Watts

          It isn’t magical thinking. It’s hedonism. The liberal/progressive middle class (“bobos”) don’t want any socio-political change that poses any real threat to their privileges. This is one of reasons why identity politics is at the forefront of our political system and why protests and elections are irrelevant as a force for change.

          The majority of people who attend protests simply want to feel better about themselves or the world. Their presence isn’t an expression of political force or organization. It is a mostly useless gesture. The politicians know this and don’t do anything but pay lip service to their pet cause because it is all that’s needed.

          There isn’t anything vaguely radical or revolutionary about Sanders. Even if he became president can anybody see him nationalizing the Wall Street banks and wiping out both the stock and bondholders? How about instituting a wealth tax? But, boy oh boy, the idea of a self-described socialist like Bernie as president makes me feel good about America’s future!

          1. James Levy

            So I should vote for Jeb, Rubio, or Trump because having Sanders in the White House instead doesn’t mean anything? Really?

            1. Andrew Watts

              I don’t think it really matters who becomes president in 2016 from a leftist perspective. Although if Hillary becomes president I think there’s a good possibility that it will shatter the Democratic Party and the federal government will be paralyzed by total gridlock. Maybe we’re heading down that road anyway. There still isn’t any guarantee that any left wing or populist alternative would emerge from the wreckage.

              For the sake of the argument Sanders is in the White House what’s going to be his agenda exactly? What chance does it have of being enacted with Congress? You know, that venerable institution that has trouble passing a budget and can’t seem to figure out how to handle matters of war and peace. We’re kinda waging an illegal war against the Islamic State seeing as how the 2001 AUMF didn’t cover anything beyond the group responsible for 9/11. I don’t believe Sanders has addressed any of those relevant topics at all.

              This matters especially when I see the same people who voted for Obama playing another round of Messiah of the Moment. Meanwhile prominent members of the political class ranging from Hillary (w/ BLM) to General Odierno (concerning Iraq and IS) are calling for ideas and visionaries to lead the country.

              Yup, it’s that bad when even the Establishment is that lost and confused and that all matters far more than any presidential election imo.

              1. Kurt Sperry

                I think you vastly underestimate the possibilities for a Sanders presidency, and not just you but almost everyone as well. I went through the description of how Sanders can turn all the obstructionism he would face against those doing it. Obstructionism won’t work the same way it does against someone who is in place exactly to stymie populist policy, and once the kayfabe of DC politics begins to be exposed by being openly challenged. It probably hasn’t actually been so challenged in the better part of a century so there are no surviving antibodies in the political organism adapted to defend it.

                1. Andrew Watts


                  The idea of Sanders breaking the deadlock isn’t something I’m willing to take on faith. Obama tried his best to do so through the implementation of the sequester and subsequent maneuvering. When that didn’t work he followed it by massive bribery and the granting of constituent wish lists. This has barely been effective and shown any real results.

      2. Oldeguy

        Thanks for the link. Strong article, well argued case for simply ignoring Presidential politics as being a ruling class shell game distraction and investing one’s time and energy in grass roots pressure group building to compel concessions from the rich and powerful.
        Our friends in Black Lives Matter would heartily concur.
        Several objections come to mind:
        1) Bernie has been the first to admit ( repeatedly ) that of himself alone he can do nothing- the whole political discourse must change. That ain’t going to happen by self isolating one issue fringe groups.
        2) History wound suggest that politics at the Presidential level CAN have a strong impact. In 1932 FDR was nominated over John Nance Garner ( Texas Dem Speaker of the House ) on the 5th ballot at the Dem convention. Make a difference ? In 1944 Dem Party bosses forced Henry Wallace off the Dem ticket to be replaced by the far less progressive Harry Truman. Make a difference ?
        3) Elections aren’t the only thing giving the Elite what legitimacy they possess ( superior experience, education etc ) but they are the only time the serfs are canvassed for their opinion.
        4) Finally, and I believe most importantly, the article is a morale killing invitation to a self fulfilling prophecy- of course life on the fringe will suck.

        1. jrs

          Yes it’s a good article, especially the quote “get power quick schemes”.

          1) Yes but even Obama made that argument (we need to make him do it, put pressure on him etc., we need to be the change etc. etc. – lots of “we” in Obama’s rhetoric). Note I am not arguing because Obama made that argument that Bernie = Obama. I am arguing that such rhetorical hand waving about how we need a movement by politicians who are really primarily running for office amounts to little. The article called forth the ideal of a different type of campaign where Presidential politics really could be used for movement building because the candidate prioritizes such and makes facilitating such easy within his/her campaign. But that might detract from Presidential campaigning? I don’t know. It perhaps requires a certain slight de-emphasizing of personal political ambitions for such a greater good.

          2) I think history may only suggest that politics at the Presidential level can have a strong impact if and only if strong grassroots movements already exist. Certainly there were plenty of very active leftists movements in the time of FDR. I’m not sure the present is really such a time. I suppose such could develop under the next presidency if the circumstances were right and then we might be glad Sanders is President. But the movements not the Presidency is primary.

          3) some truth in this one. In elections they at least ask for our input, that’s something I guess. So it’s perhaps an argument for voting as such maybe for Sanders or if it comes down to it for a 3rd party candidate. But it’s at best an argument for minimal involvement. As for the superior education of the elite. F them and their superior education. They aren’t using it to address the major issues of our time. All their education isn’t used to address issues like climate change and the destruction of the very life support systems of the planet. What could be more critical? What the heck good is their superior edumacation but for narrow Machiavellian purposes (or it’s modern equivalents in advertising etc.). Education without social interest is worse than worthless. Now education with social interest that might be of some value ….

          4) It’s only morale killing for the Sanders campaign really. And if it’s delusional to believe a Presidential campaign can accomplish much we may be better off without that morale. Otherwise the morale will just be killed ANYWAY when Sanders wins and can’t accomplish much (or if he loses of course). I don’t mind hope where there is very little hope, but at what cost? If hopes lead people to massively misdirect their energy, perhaps such hopes are better destroyed. He is urging building movements.

          1. Oldeguy

            Thank you for the thoughtful extended reply.
            Re rebuttal #3, I really should have been more clear concerning legitimacy possibly stemming from “experience, education” as referring more to expertise- especially concerning the financial system.
            When Yves shut down comments on her posts recently, it prompted me to invest the time and effort ( both of which retirement now affords)
            to bring myself “up to speed” in this area.
            It really is important to know what you’re talking about as well as having your heart in the right place.
            That does not entail ceding entire control of The Ships Bridge to technocrats- the Fabulous Four of Greenspan, Summers, Rubin and Geithner should forever cure us of that- but knowledge of the nuts and bolts beyond “four legs good, two legs bad” is necessary.
            The appointment of Elizabeth Warren to the Financial Products Consumer Protection Agency was so fiercely resisted precisely because she had the requisite “education”.
            It is a standard smear of the Corporate Right that the Left consists of self hating ignorant egomaniacs who couldn’t run a lemonade stand much less the U.S. economy.

      3. Torsten

        I don’t have the link at hand, but I just saw Sanders make this very concession (on MSNBC??): “I’ll tell you something no other candidate will tell you”, he said, “it’s not about electing me–it’s about building a movement.”

    2. Oldeguy

      “they do not mention turmoil in the markets, which would be attributed to Democratic/neoliberal establishment mismanagement”
      This is the cloud on the horizon that could change everything virtually overnight.
      Wall Street “lobbying” successfully blunted efforts to break up the Too Big To Fail institutions and render another 2008 impossible ( the contrast between post collapse reforms of FDR Admin. vs Obama Admin. is glaring ).
      There exists a vast reservoir of the Utterly Disaffected on Main Street whose tolerance for professional pol smooth content free BS is Zero and who would ( figuratively ) grab the pitchforks should The Great Casino go into meltdown again.
      Bernie and Trump are drawing support from the same vast pool though their respective adherents would never admit this ( especially to themselves ).

      1. Brooklin Bridge

        Agreed, but this pool can be easily manipulated as shown by the vastly different solutions (Trump and Sanders) the “system” has thrown up in response to the discontent.

    3. Brooklin Bridge

      The title of the article is more or less click bait as the substance is directly contradictory to the title: How Sanders Can Win; he can’t, that’s how.

      The business about Biden is a throwaway argument and took up about that much space in the article. Nate is a moderate and is almost certainly for Hillary. And he may be right anyway when he says the Democratic base is still overwhelmingly in the Hillary camp.

    4. Kurt Sperry

      Yes, FiveThirtyEight’s analysis strikes me as naively uninformed and teetering on top of a lot of generally unstated and unexamined consensus assumptions that only hold true within a steady-state political equilibrium. Now to someone swimming submerged in the beltway swamp, as it is clear reading the linked article that they completely are, the daily soap opera set piece dramas of the duopoly doesn’t look like a steady-state. The consensus assumption that the red and blue teams are operating in true adversarial fashion and represent actual parties in conflict conceals the closer-to-reality narrative that the two sides are more co-conspirators than ideological or political rivals. They don’t have a category for Sanders or Trump, because all their assumptions and analytical methodologies are built on the fiction of an adversarial relationship between Red and Blue, and those carefully groomed assumptions don’t apply given any viable players present that break the kayfabe. Just as in the political class, all the “expertise” built up within the environment of kayfabe suddenly becomes useless or worse outside the steady-state that has been categorically misidentified as actual political struggle.

      How can the pollsters’ analyses be reality based when they are embedded in this beltway/mainstream media reality distortion field? Read FiveThirtyEight’s dog ate my homework apologia for the epic across the board polling fail in the UK 2015 General and its focus on modeling arcana and methodological detail. The polling analysis didn’t fail because of the wonkish technical reasons cited, it failed because the entire foundation the models were constructed atop only holds true if the game is rigged to exclude a whole range of possibilities. It failed because the pollsters cannot see past the blinkers necessary to maintain the kayfabe, because their entire view of the political processes is completely constrained by convention. I haven’t seen FiveThirtyEight’s books, but one suspects their income stream (like those of the entire political press) is also is to some degree predicated on their maintaining the kayfabe.

      Not that one should be surprised by all the confusion and incomprehension and erroneous thinking. Nobody alive today has seen an American presidential election minus the kayfabe, the rigged, baked in assurance that all the viable players have been greased and bought off to stymie populist policies. When your fundamental view of reality is incorrect, naturally your predictions are likely to be as well.

      Reality distortion fields take a lot of energy and resources to maintain. The aren’t robust and they are vulnerable to attack or to seemingly spontaneous collapse. Pollsters like FiveThirtyEight are so focused on the inside baseball and the soap opera subplots and fixed fights within it, the messy reality outside the distortion field probably doesn’t even exist in their minds.

  9. michael webster

    FWIW someone with actual money to wager, Paddy Power, has the odds for Sanders at 18% (2 to 11) – up from 12% 10 days ago…

  10. Furzy Mouse

    Quick comment re Hillary….how quickly Congress, the MSM and pundits have forgotten Benghazi, now that they have server-gate to gnaw on…!!

      1. voxhumana

        and then there’s Honduras:

        “Bowing to pressure from conservative Republicans in Congress, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton refused to condemn the ouster of leftist President Manuel Zelaya in 2009. By her own admission, she began plotting within days to prevent him from returning to office.

        Her recently released emails show that she sought help from a pro-coup lobbyist for Honduran business interests to establish communications with the new military-backed president. She also approved the continuation of U.S. aid to the illegitimate new regime, blocked demands by the Organization of American States for Zelaya’s return, and accepted subsequent presidential elections that were condemned by most international observers as unfair and marred by violent intimidation.

        In 2011, President Obama officially welcomed Honduras’s dubious new president to the White House and praised his “strong commitment to democracy.”

  11. Furzy Mouse

    Query….why no “Black Lives Matter” protests at Repub meets? I had one wag say because they might get shot….whoever is running that show, if there is anyone, is totally clueless about the candidates…they just come off as pushy…

      1. Andrew Watts

        In other words, it’s called preaching to the choir. Which is one of the major reasons why the American left hasn’t made any advances for decades. Another reason why BLM won’t produce any positive change, and probably end up alienating friend and foe alike in the process, is their routine display of self-righteousness. I can’t think of a better way to inspire disgust and get people to ignore you.

        I also take issue with the whole “Black Lives Matter” name for the movement. A better tactic would’ve been to adopt “black lives matter too” as a motto or name. It is less divisive and more inclusive while acknowledging the social problem it allegedly seeks to confront.

  12. IsabelPS

    I had to check this thing about creditors wanting to grab Greek archaelogical sites. All I found was this in the quoted document:

    “Acknowledgement of site of archaeological interest at Hellinikon coastal front”

    I still don’t understand. Considering this:

    I don’t understand the point of adding yet another archaelogical site with iffy revenue collected.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      That will go along with the Ark and Covenant and the Holy Grail to afford the owner supreme occult greatness.

      Maybe Indie and save the Greeks.

      1. craazyman

        what if they found a place where Plato took a sh*t?

        I wonder if that would be worth anythhing?


        1. craazyman

          honestly folks, that news story yesterday about the female army ranger was too crude even for the peanut gallery. don’t we have any standards for a refined cerebrality? I certainly hope so, lbecause the thought of a 7 inch long (I can’t even say it out of gentlemanly discretion) was too much for my tender cinematic sensibility. It was xanax time after reading that! Restraint please when posting! This is not a brothel of the mind.

          1. craazyman

            right after i’d bitten into a Turkey sub and was starting to chew. That’s when the definition popped up on the screen.

            1. craazyman

              actually if Plato had thought about his theory of forms in relation to the variety of ways shit comes out, he might have invented calculus! The ideal form of Shit could be an integration over all the little shits where S = S(shit)ds.

              it always pays to pay attention!

  13. Inverness

    Re: Canadian election. While I hate NDP candidate Thomas Mulcair’s Thatcher-praising comments made 10 years ago , Mulcair remains the only viable choice. Remember, the NDP won Alberta’s elections, so this gives the party a boost. He left the Liberals in Quebec because he opposed a park-privatisation scheme under Quebec Premier Charest. So he has some integrity. Mulcair is a skilled politician who was the only party head with the foresight to oppose Bill 51, which was just passed and curtails Canadian civil liberties, including on the web. He wants to bring 15$ day cares nation-wide. He’s the only one with a remotely progressive platform, unless you count the Green Party candidate, but her chances are nil.


      1. Inverness

        Yes. There is debate about whether it was an “orange wave,” (NPD’s colours are orange), or a “Rachel wave,” since Rachel Notley, the new Alberta PM is quite charismatic and the conservative PM really ran a lousy campaign. Like you alluded, Alberta voting NPD is like Texas voting for Bernie Sanders. It feels that weird.

        The two provinces where Mulcair’s party could get the crucial votes: B.C. and Quebec. Right now, Mulcair is doing really well in Quebec. Harper is doing so badly in Quebec that the Bloc Quebecois (a separatist party) is beating him by two points. Quebec is the second biggest province, so this is not a minor matter. While southern Ontario could be pro-Harper, the Ontarian Premier is openly feuding Harper and openly campaigning for Trudeau. That might hurt Harper too. That’s what I’m hoping, anyway!

        1. Kurt Sperry

          I live near the Canadian border and interact daily with Canadians from BC and I’ve never heard anything but contempt expressed towards Harper. I also know a group of Ontarians and Torontonians who, while often pretty right wing, still find Harper an embarrassment. Torontonian conservatives are an astonishingly shameless lot, ex-mayor Rob Ford for instance is still on the local political scene after a series of epic lurid scandals that would have been politically fatal almost anywhere else.

          And yes, the NDP win in Alberta is perhaps indicative of a shift in The Force. Nobody predicted that. Nobody.

          1. Inverness

            Something tells me that if we could crack the code of former Mayor Ford’s popularity in the Greater Toronto Area, we could do the same with Donald Trump. Although at least Trump isn’t (yet?) in a position of power.Apparently there are people who find inarticulate rambling and impulsive, rash behaviour appealing and fresh. “They just say what’s on their minds!…who needs political correctness, blah blah blah.

            1. JEHR

              Mayor Ford was popular because he always answered his own phone calls and solved the many problems of his constituents on an individual basis. He also posed as a “good ole boy” who struggled along with his neighbours even though he is very wealthy. That’s how you do it: Thrump gets traction by being wealthy; Ford by claiming he is just an average guy and proving it by ingesting drugs!

    1. GregG

      It seems like the NDP is the best bet for Canada at this time, but I’m concerned that Mulcair is going to give Canada it’s own Obama moment. Stories like this and other hints of the same kind of narcissism that drives Harper.

      What we should really do is bypass the PMO altogether and elect Elizabeth May queen; she would be an outstanding prime minister, but for now we have to settle for just having her in the House.

      1. Kurt Sperry

        I’m gonna roll the moderation queue dice and try to post this link to an election graphic created by the Canadian Liberal Party of Trudeau the Younger absolutely positioning itself/himself well to the populist left of Mulcair and the NDP. There is a definite whiff of the Obamian turncoat in some of Mulcair’s recent rhetoric and Trudeau’s people have picked up on it and are using it against him.

  14. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Poisonous connections in Tianjin.

    Tianjin – where the last emperor went because the foreign concessions were safer than China itself.

    In any case, they need an Anti-Corruption bubble. Super-size it.

    This is a great opportunity. And make sure no bribe money leaves China to buy a house, prop up another housing bubble (or start a business and create jobs*) and get a green card somewhere.

    *That’s like, hey, we frackers create jobs.

  15. JEHR

    Thanks for the articles on Canada’s election. But the real reason that I dislike intensely all that Harper stands for boils down to his dismantling of our democracy which, of course, never gets mentioned as a “policy” by any of the leaders.


    The index of the above article lists his dismantling thus:

    Misusing and abusing Parliament
    Eroding the independence of a robust public service
    Muzzling watchdog mechanisms
    Failing to protect whistle-blowers
    Hostility to government research and data at odds with government policy
    Compromising public access to information
    Aversion to research perceived at odds with government’s political agenda
    Curtailing advocacy and dissent on environmental and scientific issues
    Devaluing, dismissing and misrepresenting Indigenous voices
    Obstructing voices for women’s equality
    Vilifying and distrusting Canada’s veterans
    Failing to support and invest in children and youth
    Undermining unions and the labour movement
    Isolating and stifling the voices of the economically marginalized
    Using national security to hide and justify human rights abuses
    Putting foreign policy before human rights and development
    Removing equality for newcomers

    The reason, I think, that the news media seem to be focusing on the Duffy matter of his not paying his expenses and Harper’s PMO paying for them is more available to the public at this time. Harper is not going to talk about any of the above items and the other leaders do not seem to dwell on what is really important: Harper is attacking our social programs, our scientists, our public servants, women’s groups, charitable groups that don’t toe HIS line, whistle blowers, veterans, indigenous people, environmentalists (those “radicals”), etc. Next he will be attacking our single payer healthcare system by defunding it and/or by creating public/private partnerships; he will attack the private sector in every way possible even if he gets in as a minority government.

    I am really, really worried about the coming election.

    And by the way, Harper learned a lot of his policking by looking at the Republican party in the US. He is special friends with Scott Walker! (See: )

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      Haven’t U.S. squillionaires been funding right-wing Canadian think tanks for some time? I seem to remember this from back in Chretien’s day, when I followed Canadian politics more closely.

      Why are you so worried?

      1. JEHR

        I am worried about our other options: the NDP leader is very aggressive and I think he will keep all the power he has acquired from Harper; the Liberal leader has made some poor decisions on bills passed by Harper; e.g., he voted for Bill C-51 which took away some of our civil liberties for the sake of surveillance when he should have voted No. I would not mind a Green Party government because it actually listens to the public and is run by an environmentalist, Elizabeth May.

        I should have more confidence in the Canadian electorate but there are some really strange bedfellows out there who love the money Harper is throwing every which way and Ezra Levant ( )

  16. Bunk McNulty

    From Plessy To Ferguson. Worthwhile essay on the history of American racism by George Lipsitz.

    “…the racial order of the United States requires us to live with evil and then to lie about it, to deny even the existence of systemic and structural injustice, to identify with the oppressors and to blame the oppressed.”

  17. susan the other

    the post on symmetry and beauty in physics reminded me of mathbabe a while back when she talked about how satisfying math is when the equations work… coherence might be a form of beauty, no?

    1. ewmayer

      In physics, symmetry may make things beautiful, but asymmetry makes things interesting – and the universe, as well as all life within it, possible.

    2. craazyman

      A friend of mine did the translation from French. I’m going from memory but I think it’s right.

      It’s probably pretty much like a mathematician would see it, but articulated to a far more probing degree by a mathematician of language.

      La Beaute
      by Charles Baudelaire (from Flowers of Evil)

      I am the beautiful, a soul of stone
      and the repeated beatings at my breast
      arouse a love that never comes to rest
      a love as mute as matter, and alone

      I live high in the sky, my sight is deep
      I make the white of swan and snow unite
      I dislike movement which sets lines in flight
      and I never laugh, and I never weep

      Poets who know the poses and the masks
      that I have taken from great ancient art
      they spend their days in most exacting tasks
      for I possess to please each eager heart
      clear mirrors for these lovers to see through
      my eyes forever large, forever true

      -trans by Wm Packard

  18. alex morfesis

    lambert not snarky enough…have tuned out the story as the mastodon stream media is making up versions of what happened and not too many photos of the arena of action…who got shot ? one person…yet we are told a window gets shot out…and that there was one shot then “some” weapon jammed…then some one takes his gun out of his hand and there are two other guys on him but now somehow he reaches for a box cutter and cuts the media hero who was brave enough to run at him but then foolishly puts him in a headlock which is the stupidest thing to do when fighting someone…or did this mystery drug dealer muslim grow a third arm…more snark…yes it is good that good people rush a criminal…action is better than fear…it is also a great way for some metal detector companies to sell some more units…follow the money…cui bono…meaning who is using the story to make money and change policy…

    1. Jess

      Your comment on the stupidity of using a headlock relies on the media’s definition of a headlock. It’s my guess that the soldier was going for a choke hold, which is a great way to render an opponent unconscious in less than a minute. However, in the cramped conditions of the aisle between rows of seats, the soldier may have been unable to get the correct arm positioning and/or body leverage to complete the hold. Also, by going for the choke hold, the soldier forced the terrorist to concentrate on defending against being choked out, which is why he sliced the soldier’s arm with the razor knife. This allowed the other two guys to concentrate on the weapon and then bludgeoning the guy into lullaby-land.

      1. alex morfesis

        headlock choke-hold…same foolishness…four (or now five) people…hmmm…four limbs…four people…and the press conference with us amba/dor showed a different version of events…choke-hold takes a minute as you mentioned…much can be done to a fool who has chosen to tie his own hands up around my neck in those 45 to 75 seconds…

        1. Jess

          Just happened to read the interview with the three guys on the Guardian. Turns out that Spencer, the guy who tackled the terrorist, is — wait for it — a martial arts guy who was going for — wait for it — a choke hold. And his fellow serviceman Alek immediately took away the guy’s handgun.

          You may disagree, but I think these guys handled things superbly and above criticism.

          1. IsabelPS

            Just to give a litle context, the French actor Jean-Hughes Anglade, that was also there (and got hurt breaking the glass that covers the alarm), said that the train crew ran away to lock themselves away from trouble leaving the passengers on their own.

          2. alex morfesis

            ah yes above criticism…because the story is solid…oh wait…wapo what did you just say…the lawyer who was with the “terrorist” during the police interogation reported that the drug dealer muslim was homeless and “found” the weapons in the park where he was sleeping rough…hmmm…sounds like a convenient…

            oh wait…there is more ???

            the americans had paid for first class seats…but hey…were just gonna sit where ever…and then decided to sit in some other where ever which just happened to be the car the event took place in…

            nah…gonna go back to cheering on the rays now…too many cookies on wapo…might get infected by some curiosity bug…and then my computer would be useless…can’t make much money auctioning eyeballs on someone who remembers
            chicago attorney simon thomas sutton and his “legion of justice” and its ties to william buckleys “young americans for freedom”…long live the sharon statement…and all the wonderful moments of progress brought forth to celebrate the day of it’s founding…that day ??

            why september 11 silly…

            didn’t you get the memo ??

  19. Brindle

    Sanders 2016

    I’m not too familiar with PoliticsUSA, but it appears to inhabit a similar realm as TPM. This editorial by co-editor Sarah Jones is a thinly veiled pro-Clinton piece masquerading as “advice” to the Sanders campaign. She creates a new category, the “Angry White Guy Faux Leftist” and how these types are sabotaging the Sanders campaign.

    Sarah Jones:

    —Senator Sanders is pushing an election of ideas and policies, and former Secretary Hillary Clinton is right there with him. Clinton has been doing this her entire campaign. Neither of them are playing dirty. This is such an opportunity to elevate ideas, but it’s being destroyed by nasty, teabagger-type viciousness of the new Sanders “fans”.—

        1. cwaltz

          Short and to the point works sometimes. It was an editorial. I certainly found it more valuable than today’s commentary on yesterday’s links.

        2. ifthethunderdontgetya™³²®©

          I ran across that editorial before checking the links at N.C. today.

          Senator Sanders is pushing an election of ideas and policies, and former Secretary Hillary Clinton is right there with him.

          Sure. Remember her firm stand on Fast Track?

        3. Emma

          Bernie seems to value the common man. Indeed his fellow man, and this is a rarity in politics today. He represents a sameness, not a divisive otherness. There’s a real richness in his plans to safeguard, promote, and increase that value in his fellow Americans too. Moreover, he’s specific and concrete about it. It’s like he’s the real deal democrat and it’s telling that ‘Democrats’ in the confines of the close(d) and mutually reinforcing nexus of Congress have not declared their support for him. On the other hand, this would not appear to be the case for Clinton. One would therefore conclude that she is the ‘establishment’ candidate. It’s yet another troubling example to support the argument that the common man isn’t in charge today, and has in reality, been relegated to the role of spectator weaned on pre-determined crème de la crème. It’s their sweet way in your cup of tea…….otherwise, it’s ‘revolting’ with a hot doddy to feel the Bern!!!!

  20. Pat

    Reading Kendall’s letter to the State Department saying that Clinton’s actions were well within Department guidelines and even meet current standards to ‘help’ in the Department’s defense in the Judicial Watch law suit just reminded me how glad I am that I am not a lawyer.
    And how it is a lawyer’s job to bury the facts under minutia. Minutia that says that as long as Secretary Clinton forwarded and/or copied her emails to the appropriate departmental parties the Department of State had a record of everything and then even when they didn’t she and the former Secretaries could help them as they already had. Call me wild and crazy but I saw nothing in that that actually proves that Clinton did all that or not. Maybe another lawyer could look at this and see something that actually makes a case for the Department having a clear and full record of the Secretary’s electronic transmissions, but what I saw was that the Secretary did the minimum she was required to do because I’m telling you she says so.


  21. alex morfesis

    biden meets with warren…no sitting vp(other then bush 1) has ever won the presidency…and it can cause massive problems…

    1860 civil war was in many ways caused by the refusal of breckinridge to accept defeat…democrats split in two…lincoln had less then 20 percent support in republican party going into the wigwam convention in chicago…but he cut some deals with the smaller contenders as the hillary of that era (its my turn seward) in the republican party had it “sewn up” in his mind and had also blocked southern whigs from joining the wigwam convention

  22. Jim Haygood

    A couple of excerpts from Dr. Hussman’s weekly column:

    Under our interpretation of Dow Theory, the major trend has turned negative. My view is that under the market conditions we presently observe, investors face the continued potential for steep, vertical losses.

    The large initial declines of a bear market are frightening, but also seem extremely enticing, because the rebounds after those initial declines also tend to be large and encouraging. That’s often why investors are lured into “buying the dip” early in a bear market.

    This week’s column provides charts recapping the disasters of 1987, post-2000, and 2008. While he isn’t yet taking a victory lap, Dr. H’s graphical recap of these previous historic peaks implicitly presents a strongly negative view. ‘Vertical losses’ is a euphemism for ‘crash’ — inherently a rare event.

    From a contrarian perspective, this looks excessively bearish. Therefore one would expect for stocks this week, after some rocky moments in the early going, to turn around and finish higher.

    Ladies and gentlemen, place your bets.

    1. craazyman

      it’s 10 bagger time.

      but it’s not clear if the bases should be run counterclockwise or clockwise.

      it helps to have deep pockets in case you go the wrong way, just like the banksters!

    2. Brooklin Bridge

      … steep, vertical losses that aren’t gradual but rather quite abrupt in a straight up and down sort of way…

  23. ewmayer

    RIP Yvonne Craig, ‘Batgirl’, 78.

    Also check out the moving ‘my real life superhero’ post by IMDB user ‘noncentz’ in the discussion forum at bottom of that page.

  24. financial matters

    Macedonia Allows Migrants to Cross Border From Greece WSJ

    This is not going to be an easy problem. It may be useful to start thinking of this as climate change related as a core factor rather than just conflict per se.

    Nomi Prins and Naomi Klein review Christian Parenti’s ‘Tropic of Chaos: Climate Change and the New Geography of Violence’

    “Parenti’s epic new book describes the harrowing condition of catastrophic convergence, or the ‘collision of political, economic and environmental disasters.’ It is a wake-up call to humanity… The detrimental effects of our environmental gluttony at the heart of our economic avarice are not blurry fatalistic hypotheses — they are here, today.” (NP)

    “A richly investigated and original account of the role climate change is already playing in contemporary conflicts. This glimpse of the future we most fear arrives just in time to change course.” (NK)


    “In the border town of Gevgelija, extra trains have been laid on to deal with the spike in passengers. It takes around four hours by train to reach Tabanovce on Macedonia’s northern border with Serbia, some 180 kilometres (110 miles) away.

    Once they reach Serbia, many migrants and refugees will try to make their way to Hungary, which is a major crossing point into the EU, although the country is building a four-metre (13-foot) barbed wire fence along its 175-kilometre border to stop the influx.”

    no-man’s land

  25. ewmayer

    Re. The Atlantic’s The War That Congress Won’t Declare, before clicking the link my first guess was “the one on the 99%?” (Followed by [2] the middle class, [3] American civic life, and [4,5,6,…] various amendments of the Bill of Rights.)

  26. abynormal

    Shanghai…..3,252.89 ….-254.85 (-7.27%)

    Nikkei 225….18,931.93 …..-503.90 (-2.59%)

    Hang Seng Index ….21,574.96 …..-946.54 (-4.21%)

    (Coming events cast their shadows before them.)

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