Recent Items

Links 5/20/16

Posted on by

On the reception and detection of pseudo-profound bullshit Judgment and Decision Making (Dr. Kevin). Important. For instance, “As a prime example, the necessary succinctness and
rapidity of “Twitter” (140 characters per “Tweet”) may be particularly conducive to the promulgation of bullshit.”

See the robotic insect that flies and perches BBC (David L)

Genetically modified salmon approved for consumption in Canada Globe and Mail. Frosty Zoom: “The money quote: ‘The fish will not need to be labelled as genetically modified.'”

China?

China’s Debt Bomb Barry Ritholtz (resilc)

Is China a House of Cards? Pepe Escobar, Sputnik (resilc)

China criticizes US steel anti-dumping measures Associated Press (EM)

Brexit?

Salmond: Brexit could trigger Scottish independence in two years Agence France-Presse

Bank of England may need to cut interest rates even if UK stays in EU Guardian

‘Brexit’ or Not, U.K. Is Part of Europe Wall Street Journal

Grexit?

Berlin seeks to reach Greece deal with IMF Financial Times. Schauble is making more conciliatory noises, but there is still no overlap between the IMF’s and Germany’s positions.

U.S. Treasury’s Lew urges flexibility on Greek debt talks Reuters. Translation: The Treasury supports the IMF in public. But the real question is how far Treasury is willing to go in private.

Democracy under Attack in Poland Defend Democracy

Oil-for-Drugs Swap: India’s Answer to Venezuela’s Unpaid Bills OilPrice (EM)

Syraqistan

Israel and Saudi Arabia: Strange Bedfellows in the New Middle East Foreign Policy in Focus (resilc)

PM Netanyahu replies to Officers’ charges of Fascism by appointing far Right Lieberman their boss Juan Cole

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

How the Government Monitored Twitter During Baltimore’s Freddie Gray Protests Vice (resilc)

Wrist Sensor Tracks Blood Alcohol Content In Real Time Popular Science (resilc)

Imperial Collapse Watch

NSA Participated In the Worst Abuses of the Iraq War George Washington

“In NATO tank competition, U.S. comes up short against Germany” Washpost Sic Semper Tyrannis (resilc)

Trade Traitors

Big Report, Little Finding: The ITC evaluates the economic impact of the TPP Jared Bernstein. “The findings are largely positive on net but tiny..” And we have the considerable national sovereignity offsets.

Is India holding the line against another TPP? East Asia Forum

2016

Shadow Banks Clinton Flags as Risky Put Millions Into Her Run Bloomberg (resilc)

Clinton to Californians: Your Votes Will Not Affect the Democratic Primary Whatsoever Huffington Post. Today’s must read. As Lambert recommended, be sure to see the section starting, “CUOMO: So, you get into the general election, if you’re the nominee, for your party” Breathtaking arrogance.

Love Me, Love Me, Love Me, I’m a Leninist Corey Robin (martha r). A must read.

Hillary’s Support Among Democrats Fades As Party Crisis Looms Investors’ Business Daily (martha r)

Bradley Schrager, Andrew Davey, Riley Snyder KNPB Channel 5 Video. Martha r: “Ralston’s show for tonight. Ralston breaks down the Nev Dem convention. Discussion starts around 7:00 and goes to around 24:00. Blatant falsehoods.”

Did Sanders Supporters Throw Chairs at Nevada Democratic Convention? Snopes (martha r)

Establishment Collectively Stunned To See Citizens Reject Rigged Democratic Primary Shadowproof

Watch: Hillary Clinton Delegate Reveals ‘Manipulation’ at Controversial Nevada Dem Convention Alternet

Never underestimate the Democrats’ ability to blow a presidential race The Week (resilc)

DNC to offer Sanders a convention concession Washington Post (martha r)

Clinton’s Hawkish Admirers American Conservative (resilc)

Republicans Want Their Party to Unify Behind Donald Trump, Poll Shows New York Times

Maryland Trump delegate indicted after ATF agents find explosives, machine gun and child porn Raw Story (furzy)

Are Economists Idiots or Just Delusional? Angry Bear. On health care costs.

The TSA will ruin your summer vacation and no one can agree on a fix The Verge. A not-bad headline, but the article fails to mention that the criticisms of the TSA were amped up to undermine its union. And notice the three NY airports think the problem is the private contractors (or perhaps more accurately, the staffing the private contractors deem necessary to meet their obligations).

Why Now Is the ‘Golden Age’ of Selling Weed in New York, According to Dealers Vice

California Cops Are Fighting Weed Legalization Because It Means Less Money for Them Gawker

San Francisco police chief quits BBC

Yahoo Suitors Expected to Bid $2 Billion to $3 Billion, Below Past Indications Wall Street Journal

The Real Reason Big Pharma Wants to Help Pay for Your Prescription Bloomberg

Nasdaq just went nuclear on the SEC Business Insider (David L). Over the IEX application to become an exchange.

A 50-Year U.S. Bond Makes More Sense Than Ever Bloomberg. Resilc: “No way, try the endless war bond instead.”

Hedge fund took out loan for private jet amid bribery inquiry Financial Times

‘Low-for-long’ interest rates and net interest margins of banks VoxEU. Confirming Izabella at FTAlphaville.

How the computer transformed economics. And didn’t. Institute for New Economic Thinking (Chuck L)

Top Economic Blogs of 2016 Intelligent Economist. Resilc protested NC being #21, but the ranking puts MSM and “institutional” blogs above “general blogs” which is where we sit. We’ve pretty much always ranked between #2 and #5 in stand-alone blog rankings (we’re #4 in this categorization), save one that was a network analysis based on influence that put us as #1, ahead even of Krugman and FT Alphaville. But this looks to have a right-wing bias. New Economic Perspectives and the Institute for New Economic Thinking’s blogs are missing. And VoxEu and Bruegel are also absent.

Fed

I Continue to Fail to Understand Why the Federal Reserve’s Read of Optimal Monetary Policy Is so Different from Mine… Brad DeLong

Fed Hike Threat Has Wall Street Braced for the Worst Fiscal Times

Guillotine Watch

Time Warner Cable CEO Rob Marcus gets $92 million severance after 2.5 years on the job Boing Boing (resilc)

Class Warfare

As US politicians romanticize doomed manufacturing jobs, the new working class is suffering Quartz (resilc). Important.

Elizabeth Warren slams Uber and Lyft Financial Times

Pope condemns ‘bloodsuckers’ who exploit poor workers Reuters (furzy)

Antidote du jour. @Strange_Animals: “The adorable silky anteater is the smallest species of anteater, with a body length of just 19 cm.”

silky anteater links

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

122 comments

  1. Nick

    Re the Huffpost article on CNN interview with Clinton

    Breathtaking arrogance indeed (not to mention stunning obedience by Cuomo). And the MSM is very dutifully playing along. I suspect that since the NJ primary results will come out first on June 7th and probably give her the delegates needed (including supers) to reach the magic number, the media will declare her the nominee.

    However, given his 12 point win in OR (closed primary) and landslide in WA, I suspect that he will in fact score at least a 10+ point win in California. If it’s between 15 and 20, then I suspect that one can safely assume him to be the nominee regardless of all other factors including whatever crap the MSM spews.

    I generally think schadenfreude is a pretty destructive emotion, but after an interview like that, I hope some enterprising young youtuber puts together a compilation clip of her declaring herself the nominee that goes viral once Bernie is declared the nominee.

    1. different clue

      The Mainstream Inner Party Democrats will never permit Sanders to be nominated. If Sanders can win a majority of the voted-for delegates before being denied the nomination at the Clintonite Shitocrat Convention, the Sanders people will be fired-up to begin the long hard work needed to purge and burn the Clintonite Obamacrats from every corner of the Party.

    2. Jeff W

      Quite honestly, if I were a Clinton supporter in California, I would take the admonition of my preferred candidate to heart and just stay home.

  2. RabidGandhi

    Bezos: DNC to Offer Sanders a Convention Concession
    ________

    1. The article points to Sanders letter to DWS and confuses it with a fungible demand. The letter highlighted blatant inequities in the formation of committees– something the DNC should have rectified without anything in exchange. I should hope the Sanders campaign does not trade away any of its assets for the DNC fixing something it should have fixed anyways.

    2. Notice the picture of angry Sanders supporters: again a direct parallel in photo selection to the photos inevitably chosen to show Middle East popular uprisings, with the message: these people are irrational beasts compared to the calm, cool Washington elite. Then there’s this little gem:

    The mistrust hit a boiling point in Nevada over the weekend, when a ruckus caused by Sanders supporters prompted security officials to cut short the state party convention.

    Comment is unnecessary.

    3. My latest thoughts, should Sanders not be nominated, is that he should pry whatever concessions he can from HRC/DWS/DNC (meaningless as their promises may be), and then endorse her– and even campaign with her as she mentioned doing with Obama in 2008– but here’s the rub. If I were Sanders, I would use the campaigns w/ HRC as an opportunity for a bully pulpit and change absolutely nothing in my stump speeches. Continue to make them implicitly anti-HRC by attacking Goldman Sachs, TPP/TTIP, the Iraq/Libya wars… All whilst paying lipservice to being on HRC’s side. Imagine HRC having to follow a Bernie stump that gets the crowd fired up and then have to weasel her way out of everything he just said. A better forum for counter-distinction would be harder to find. If Sanders is denied the nomination he should use an HRC endorsement to further his message and build the movement.

    1. Pat

      I sort of love your suggestion of what he should do. It won’t happen, but I do love it. (Mostly because I’m pretty sure that beyond one big photo op appearance together, she won’t let him anywhere near her on the campaign trail.)

      1. DG

        Also, what happens after the elections? They’ll kneecap Bernie completely at the Senate. Better he quits and becomes the leader of this movement, than a toothless tiger at the Senate.

        1. Rick Cass

          Better to stay in the Senate. If the country fails to credibly reestablish the legitimacy and effectiveness of our institutions then we are lost as a democracy.

          1. NotTimothyGeithner

            The Senate lost its legitimacy about when it was proposed to balance slave and non slave states.

            As long as a state based Senate exists, it will always have legitimacy problems.

            Kneecapping the only popular politician in the country would only undermine Team Blue going forward.

            1. Jim Haygood

              A state-based Senate is the sine qua non of the federation the Founders intended. In modern lingo, you could call it “diversity.”

              Direct election of Senators (Amendment XVII) effectively nullified the federation, producing such bizarrities as unfunded mandates and the Real ID Act.

              It’s the continued use of the word “federal” to describe the all-powerful central government that has legitimacy problems.

              1. Vatch

                If the central government were all-powerful, the billionaire funders of ALEC would not waste their money lobbying in state legislatures.

            2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

              The senate is not compatible with the idea of the popular vote.

              It’s akin to the electoral college – no proportional representation. A small state – like Vermont, for example – has 2 senators as a big state several times its size.

          2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            Credibility can be restored with a Truth about Neoliberalism and Reconciliation campaign.

            That means, no No-Fly-Zones, i.e. No-Go Zones, that are self-imposed and only apply to oneself, but not one’s opponent.

            No-Go Zones, such as avoiding taking on the leader of the last 8 years, no mentions of email server, etc.

        2. chris m

          If he can continue to raise substantial amounts of money it will be difficult to shut him down completely. The rest of the Democratic Senators will kiss his ass to get a piece of the action.

      2. RabidGandhi

        I’m trying to think of a way for Sanders to parley his assets into greater presence for the movement. The hard part is I don’t see the DNC as wanting what he has to offer (they don’t think they need voters; they think they need corporate funders), and I don’t see him wanting the dog biscuits the DNC might throw him (he’s not interested in personal power or a deal like the 2008 HRC/Obama deal, and any platform or rhetorical concessions should be discarded given the DNC’s untrustworthiness).

        Either way, Sanders could appear w/ HRC a few times, but then still organise mass rallies ostensibly to campaign for the general election, while really the content would be implicitly anti-HRC/Trump/status-quo. These rallies might even be well received by the media (at first– until they realise they are a threat).

        1. Harry

          See Iron Rule of Organizations.

          The question is whether there is a faction which will lay beyond the electing.

          Sorry, a faction other than the existing DNC.

        2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          That will ‘harm’ Hillary’s chances.

          And his supporters should be good with that, though object if the propaganda ministry tries to say they want to ‘harm’ her chances.

          I think that will be brilliant, though it’s still Plan B.

          Plan A is to establish credibility (not with anyone following the primary process that last few months, few they are compared with voters in the general election. The credibility bit is more for the MSM consumers – it’s for them that we object their inaccurate Nevada MSM reports) by stopping appeasing your opponent.

        3. HopeLB

          Sanders should hold rallies for all of the down ticket progressives that the DNC is not endorsing/backing (Canova, Grayson etc.,). If we get enough Bernie people in Congress, we can move Bernie’s agenda forward regardless of who is President.

          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            Does Sanders boycott the remaining primaries?

            Be pretty shocking to drop out, and the whole world will be tuned in hear why. A golden opportunity to list all the grievances.

            Last year, he calculated he had no chance but to try to capture the D nomination (I would suggest that has never been a possibility- since we are discussing whether to stay in the senate or not, this morning – except under Force Majeure, which cannot be ruled out even now). He has shown he can actually establish a new party for the next election.

            And I think a dramatic good-bye to the fatal attraction to the D party will be a great starting point for the new Party.

              1. NotTimothyGeithner

                Sanders doesn’t have a cult of personality. If Hillary was tolerable, Sanders wouldn’t be running at all. It’s that simple.

                Sanders can swear fealty, but who cares? His basic message is a return to the Democratic from the 1970s. This isn’t revolutionary stuff but the attributes of the “generic” Democrat or what Democrats have claimed to support except for that pesky filibuster. By choosing Hillary, the Democratic elites have demonstrated Glenn Greenwald was right on a clear scale. Sanders can’t fix that.

                Sanders won’t bring the Iraq War supporters on board. Democratic activism will completely cease. No one will knock a door for Hillary.

                1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

                  It’s hard to imagine, but it would not be impossible that some of her supporters think Hillary is a goddess.

                  Similarly, I have read of at least one guy who thought Sanders as truth…which to me, is at least borderline.

                2. TedWa

                  I’d have to disagree. Sander is running against the neoliberals and neocons in the dem party and would run against Hellery even if she were tolerable. To me, I don’t think it’s a cult of personality but rather people waking up and Bernie’s doing the waking

              2. Bev

                Sanders would help the Democratic party, especially in the General election, if he made sure the voting machines were free from manipulation.

                Bernie needs to talk to Bev Harris and Richard Charnin. Bernie needs to Recount Kentucky.

                http://blackboxvoting.org/fraction-magic-1/

                Fraction Magic – Part 1: Votes are being counted as fractions instead of as whole numbers
                By Bev Harris May 12, 2016


                1 – Summary –
This report summarizes the results of our review of the GEMS election management system, which counts approximately 25 percent of all votes in the United States. The results of this study demonstrate that a fractional vote feature is embedded in each GEMS application which can be used to invisibly, yet radically, alter election outcomes by pre-setting desired vote percentages to redistribute votes. This tampering is not visible to election observers, even if they are standing in the room and watching the computer. Use of the decimalized vote feature is unlikely to be detected by auditing or canvass procedures, and can be applied across large jurisdictions in less than 60 seconds.

                GEMS vote-counting systems are and have been operated under five trade names: Global Election Systems, Diebold Election Systems, Premier Election Systems, Dominion Voting Systems, and Election Systems & Software, in addition to a number of private regional subcontractors. At the time of this writing, this system is used statewide in Alaska, Connecticut, Georgia, Mississippi, New Hampshire, Utah and Vermont, and for counties in Arizona, (upcoming) California, Colorado, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Michigan, Missouri, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin and Wyoming. It is also used in Canada.


                snip
                All:

                Part 1: Votes are being counted as fractions instead of as whole numbers
                
http://blackboxvoting.org/fraction-magic-1

                Part 2: Context, Background, Deeper, Worse

                http://blackboxvoting.org/fraction-magic-2


                Part 3: Proof of code
                
http://blackboxvoting.org/fraction-magic-3

                
Part 4: Presidential race in an entire state switched in four seconds

                http://blackboxvoting.org/fraction-magic-4


                Part 5: Masters of the Universe
                
http://blackboxvoting.org/fraction-magic-5

                
Part 6: Execution capacity – coming –

                http://blackboxvoting.org/fraction-magic-6


                Part 7: Solutions and Mitigations – coming –

                http://blackboxvoting.org/fraction-magic-7
                …….

                And, networks have stopped exit polling, because polls were adjusted to match those machines.

                https://richardcharnin.wordpress.com/2016/05/19/the-democratic-primaries-no-more-exit-polls-kentucky-and-oregon-recap/


                The Democratic Primaries: No more exit polls, Kentucky and Oregon recap

                Richard Charnin

                The networks cancelled plans for exit polls for the remaining presidential primaries. Forget about the California and New Jersey primaries. Hell, they aren’t important. But…maybe this was the reason:

                • 12 exit polls (46% of 26) exceeded the calculated margin of error, 11 for Sanders. The probability is 1 in 8.3 billion.

                • 24 of 26 exit polls (92%) shifted to Clinton in the vote. The probability is 1 in 190,000.
                ……….

                Richard Charnin’s spreadsheets:
                https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1sGxtIofohrj3POpwq-85Id2_fYKgvgoWbPZacZw0XlY/edit?pref=2&pli=1#gid=1476097125

          2. RabidGandhi

            This too. Sanders campaigning for candidates like Canova, and those candidates reverberating the same message. The more alternate voices gathering crowds to hear the opposite of the HRC/DNC shift to the right, the more the movement grows.

            This is a de facto corporate takeover. For eons liberals have co-opted true leftist movements, now it’s our turn to return the favour.

          3. Yves Smith Post author

            Agreed Most important is using his list to solicit $ for them. Ability to raise money is a big source of power in politics.

    2. Waldenpond

      Sanders is calling Dems behind the scenes and telling them he’s on board.

      http://www.politicususa.com/2016/05/20/bernie-sanders-personally-calling-democrats-reassure-party-unity.html

      Durbin:“We talked about the demonstrations and such,” Durbin said Thursday in an interview. “I am convinced, as Bernie has said repeatedly, he is going to be on the team to defeat Donald Trump. I don’t have any question in my mind.”

      Boxer:“He did phone me back last night and he was very distressed about it. It was a very warm conversation, and I told him, he expressed shock that his people would do it. I did tell him the vast majority of those Bernie supporters were sitting in their chairs, they were fine, But there was this group of 50-100 people, they were not young people, they were older people and he ought to check out and see, who these people are, and he said he would. In my mind when he says he does not support any type of violence, I believe him. And he’s got to make sure it doesn’t happen. People will follow his lead.”

      1. Roger Smith

        Sounds like bullshit to me. The exact comments I’d expect these people to make up in order to pacify the insurgent movement right at the end.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          Could be.

          This presents another golden opportunity for Sanders to expose them.

      2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Many of Bernie’s supporters disagree with Bernie on joining ‘the team.’

        And candidates don’t screen their supporters beforehand. When something happens, the one option is to come forward to criticize it strongly. And this applies to all candidates.

      3. NotTimothyGeithner

        Boxer lied about the convention, and we are supposed to believe the rest of her statement. Right…

    3. vidimi

      what’s the point? it’s not like HRC can draw a big crowd and the TV won’t even air it.

      1. RabidGandhi

        RALPH NADER: What he should do… is if he has to concede, what he has to do is go after Trump, not go around the country being a toady of Hillary Clinton and being given his little slogans to mouth. That’s not his character or his personality. He’s got to then cut out and lead a civic mobilization on all these issues, against the political process. And, of course, it will fall out in a way where it will probably undermine Trump more than Hillary, because she’s good in rhetorical adjustments to progressive agendas.

        And then, after the election, he becomes the leader of a national mobilization that can affect local, state and national races, that can give concrete opportunities for the millions of young people who supported this 74-year-old grandfather—who would have predicted that, right?

    4. Benedict@Large

      At the outset, Bernie promised he was not running to hurt the party, and that he felt any win by a Democrat was better than any win by a Republican. Though many didn’t believe him, I had heard Bernie speak unscripted probably 500 times by then, and that had always been paramount to him. It almost certainly still is.

      It almost certainly still is, but it shouldn’t be. By any measure, the Democratic Party has treated Sanders like dirt, and more importantly, they have impugned his sterling reputation. They had no right to do this. While it is good to stand by one’s promises, there has to be a point when it is not only proper but necessary to go back on them, and that is when keeping them turns that person into everyone’s fool.. Bernie is at that point.

      To my mind, any obligation Sanders may have placed upon himself with regard to protecting the party should now be null and void. Clinton feels she can do it alone, and she should now be granted the opportunity to do just that. And to insure she has the chance, Sanders should take up the Green Party’s offer to run at the top of their ticket.

      The Democratic Party no longer constitutes what can be properly called a national party. It exists solely for the purpose of allowing a very few elites to leverage the power of their money, using it to interfere in the politics of the people. The last thing that any of us should be doing is providing anyone running under their banner our votes.

      1. RabidGandhi

        Former Green Party candidate Ralph Nader, from the same interview cited by Flora above:

        AMY GOODMAN: Do you think, Ralph Nader, that Bernie Sanders should become a third-party candidate?

        RALPH NADER: It’s almost too late…. But more than that is, he will be marginalized. He’ll be excluded. He won’t be reported on. Why should he want to take a very successful, spectacular campaign that he’s conducted so far and be marginalized, be called that politically bigoted word, “spoiler,” as if the political system isn’t so spoiled.

        Sanders owes diddly squat to the DNC, but he does owe his utmost to his supporters to take every possible path to help build the movement he has been talking about all campaign long. My point was that the best way to do that is to co-opt the HRC campaign and use ostensibly campaigning for her to get out his true message.

    5. inode_buddha

      I have to disagree. I don’t negotiate with terrorists, and Hillary’s DNC definitely inspires terror in every working american.

  3. lylo

    Regarding the issues plaguing the DNC:
    Ha ha ha ha. Ha.
    Sorry. They hardly need a smug “told you so,” but smug it would be because tell them I did.
    I’ve been getting a kick out of all the left’s vitriol being spewed at the right over their “fractured” party. For the record, Republican’s have been “fracturing” my whole life, then seemingly out of nowhere they coalesce and all is well. Seriously, every few years. (I know it’s weird on the left; watching a party do that on issues of substance, but it is possible.)
    In the meantime, the Democrats have been tearing apart their own party at the seems over the neo-libs. They have based all their electoral future on assumptions that probably won’t hold true (like all minorities always being democrats, for no good reason whatsoever,) all the while ignoring the fact that they are entirely reliant on the far left and actual liberal voters, which they they only stop ignoring to insult. Good luck with that as a party base.
    Signed,
    A former democrat

    1. JCC

      As a new citizen of CA, I changed my lifetime registration as an Independent to Democrat in order to vote for Sanders, obviously not realizing that Independents were allowed to vote in the Primaries here. Oh well.

      As soon as the CA Primary is over I’ll be changing my registration back to Independent (unless Sanders gets the nomination, which is doubtful at this stage of the game).

      And in November, should Clinton win the nomination and unless something radically changes my mind (like a Sanders nomination for example), I’ll be voting for Trump.

      Why?

      I can’t think of a better way to contribute to some strife within both parties. The National Republican Party hates Trump, and the National Democratic Party, should Clinton get the nod, deserves to lose.

      I cannot think of a better way to do my part in landing a blow to the two parties that show no discernible difference in economic matters, perpetual war, and their treatment of the majority of citizens in this country.

      In the short term Trump is probably a bad choice and will give us all a somewhat different bumpy ride compared to Clinton’s guaranteed bumpy ride, but in the long term maybe some good would come out of a Trump Administration – a blowup of the two Parties that have done none of us any good for the last 30 years or so.

      Signed,

      A probably temporary Democrat.

      1. Roger Smith

        ++
        This exactly. There is no difference and at that point the Democrats cannot be validated with a win. They need to have they noses rubbed in their filth (as Clinton is handed the greatest defeat of her career). Failing upward needs to end.

      2. Arizona Slim

        JCC, I did the same thing that you did. I was a temporary Dem in order to vote for Sanders. Fat lotta good that did. Our primary was stolen through voter suppression.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          Is it possible to have migratory voters who migrate from one state to another to vote their candidates?

          Make it easy to register in a new state as it is to switch party registration within a state.

          A couple of puzzles from this election cycle.

          1. In a primary, voters are banned from influencing others at the polling stations. No campaigning, not even from non-affiliated persons who are there to just vote. One has to stay quite. In a caucus, you are to the exact opposite…you try to present your case to get others to vote your way.

          2. Parties market membership like a commercial product…something to sell, so you have to make it easy for the consumer to consume. In other countries, party membership requires recommendation (about your character and qualification), a trial period and a test. Here, party membership is quite disposable. You sign up one day and get rid of it the next.

  4. timbers

    Anyone watch Barbara Boxer in this CNN interview on the scary threatening Sanders mob? I think we need an army garrison surrounding our courageous Democratic leaders to protect them from the threatening people-mobs – “If you can’t blind them with brilliance, baffle them with bullshit”

  5. Pat

    OMG, the antidote today is seriously adorable. And I’m prescribing repeat doses of it for myself.

  6. Kokuanani

    First [excellent] comment @ the Huff Po “California doesn’t matter” article:

    If you are a voter in California, New Jersey or Puerto Rico, etc. and you support Hillary, you don’t need to show up to vote any more. She has already won. If you are a Bernie supporter, you should cast your purely symbolic vote, of course.

    Clinton’s “I’ve already won” attitude is sure to “win over” Sanders voters in the general.

    1. Pat

      Considering I’ve heard over and over that the depressed turn out we have seen for almost every primary so far is because Clinton voters know she has it and don’t feel the need to actually show up to vote, I’m hoping the die hards that have kept turning out take her at her word and follow suit.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        They desperately hope. They also expected young women to be astonished by Hillary, and the Donald…really?

        Here in Virginia, Senator Mark Warner squeaked by against an underfunded Republican lobbyist. Warner had less votes in 2014 than famed racist George Allen did when Allen lost to Jim Webb in 2006.

        Besides the demographics which should favor the Democrats (when demographics didn’t favor the Democrats in the late 80’s, the governor was black, there was a Democratic Senator and the Republican was once married to Liz Taylor), the government shut down is kind of a big deal in the Commonwealth, not to mention control of the Senate being at risk. The Team Blue enthusiasm problem was so stark Warner canceled several annual gotv rallies in exchange for smaller events due to lack of interest. He actually spoke to a small room at UVA instead of holding the annual election rally they hold in the People’s Republic of Charlottesville. The Democrats have done nothing except insult voters to reverse this trend.

    2. katiebird

      New Party Rules … Cancel primaries when front runner declares victory .. Imagine all the money saved and angst avoided!

      1. diptherio

        We should do the same thing for sports. As soon as one team has scored a couple of points, the broadcasters should declare their lead “overwhelming” and just call the game right then and there. Imagine how many concussions we could avoid, not to mention all those boring extra-innings and overtimes and whatnot.

        1. Jim Haygood

          Your callousness toward the needs of our valued corporate sponsors disappoints me, diptherio.

          [better add /sarc]

          1. Strangely Enough

            But that could free up the airtime wasted on filler that could be used to broadcast content, er, commercials…

        2. Dave

          How dare you challenge the primacy of Monkeyball in our society?

          It’s the last thing that allows our lower classes to put flags on their cars and drive around with pride, showing off their passion for “their” team.

          Billy Bean was right!

    3. Roger Smith

      I hope she keeps repeating this arrogant nonsense and then loses 80-20 in the CA primary. There goes her “winner” status (at least on the pledged side).

      At this point we should all feign congratulations while she attempts to derail herself right at the end. It is one thing in this season to have seen basic history and reality ignored… but not even being able to learn from a basic story like the Tortoise and the Hare? She has some big problems.

      1. RabidGandhi

        I don’t think it’s so much arrogance as it is “pay no attention to the socialist behind the curtain”. I.e., HRC is panicking and is trying to keep voters home by making them think there is no hope. Remember for the DNC, the best voter is the one who stays at home.

        Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch’intrate

      2. Jim Haygood

        A more likely scenario is that she loses to Bernie 55-45 in the California primary, and we get two victory celebrations on June 7th: one for Bernie winning the state; one for Hillary reaching the nomination threshold.

        Cognitive dissonance or double vision? Depends on how much vodka you drank to dull the horror.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          Life imitating sports.

          Many, including Sumo wrestlers or gladiators, back into playoffs, only to go all the way.

          As long as you’re playing, you have a chance.

          The Vegas odds makers or polls may say Bernie is the one to beat Trump, but you still have to play the game – I suppose that’s the response from Hillary’s camp.

  7. roadrider

    Re; Never underestimate the Democrats’ ability to blow a presidential race

    Recycles the discredited trope that “the left” (specifically Nader) cost Gore the 2000 election

    Blames the dogs for not eating the dog food

    1. Eureka Springs

      When someone/some movement from outside, far left of, far more representative/ democratic, Nader /Sanders/ Stein/ Whoever does actually cost Dems an election… things will finally be looking up. If Sanders loses his primary voters should vote left of the d party or just sit it out in Nov. Otherwise they are just masochists asking Hillary and her party sponsors to club them like baby seals forevermore.

      In an extended conversation with friends yesterday, some of them have been State delegates for Dems over the years… I mentioned I have never been asked my views by that party. I’ve only ever been push-polled, asked for blind faith, money, and to fear republicans. If you agree with the big sponsors then you will feel represented. That’s it.

      1. Waldenpond

        Sanders supporters are already on board. I thought it was odd when I was doing Sanders support that so many were talking about Clinton for the general but polling consistently shows that more S supporters are on board for C than C supporters for O in 2008.

        I’ve already turned in my ballot in CA so I’m done. If Trump gets it, I’ll look for a candidate in 2020. If Clinton, I’ll just stick with ballot issues and ignore the candidates. At least I can finally change my registration.

        1. Dave

          Imagine, “President Clinton” elected by the electoral college with huge numbers of missing voters who didn’t bother to vote for president, but who did for senators etc in the run off. Some mandate.

          1. Waldenpond

            That’s what I thought my ballot would look like but CA primary looks like it will be selecting neoliberals so I won’t be marking many down ballot spots either.

            People seem content to vote for Clinton knowing she is the epitome of govt corruption and never ending war. Go figure.

        2. nippersmom

          You’re obviously talking to different Sanders supporters than I am. The Sanders supporters I know/talk to/interact with are, if anything, less on board than they were a few months ago.

          1. Pat

            I think it may depend on where and when you talk to people. In my case, I know some that have been on board with Hillary from day one. (I prefer Bernie, he doesn’t have a chance. I’m going to vote for him in the primary but I’ll support her in the general.) Then I’ve encountered others who are happy to live in a state where they don’t have to think about and can vote write in or third party because their state is a dependable whichever state. Some were never going to vote for her or the more they have seen throughout this have convinced them to never to vote for her. Others still see an incremental difference between Clinton and Trump in her favor, and are hoping to mitigate the damage we face by going for her.

            Pretty much 60/40 for me with 40% willing to vote for Clinton.

  8. Jim A.

    The case against long-term financing doesn’t make much sense. By financing longer-term debt inexpensively, this bizarre argument goes, the U.S. would end up encouraging even more government spending. That almost sounds reasonable until you rephrase it. If anyone actually said, “The U.S. should make sure its debt remains expensive to discourage future spending,” you would think them mad. But this is actually one of the arguments made against use of long-term refinancing.

    Of course I would characterize it as “The government should be making payments to bankers and investors in the form of interest, instead of making payments to contractors and employees for infrastructure and services.”
    Rhymes with “You shouldn’t pay off your house because you’ll lose your mortgage deduction.” –By that logic you should search out the highest mortgage rate possible. I’d rather pay taxes on interest I’m earning than get a deduction on interest I’m paying.
    But yeah, the USG not locking in low rates now is like all the idiots who refinanced to teaser rate ARMs when mortgage rates were the lowest they’d been in a generation.

    1. fresno dan

      Jim A.
      May 20, 2016 at 9:37 am
      I agree completely.
      But what drives me insane is that the very same people who make the argument for low government spending are the same people who thought it kosher to keep the Iraq war costs off the books….
      Simply unprincipled, intellectually dishonest people.

  9. fresno dan

    Wrist Sensor Tracks Blood Alcohol Content In Real Time Popular Science (resilc)
    ================================
    This is just what I need. I wish they had this when I was working, as their were many, many times when I was far more sober than I needed or wanted to be. With this device I would be able to keep myself between being so inebriated that I tell my boss what I really think, and on the other hand being so sober I am actually fully enduring what management is saying…

    1. Romancing the Loan

      And wearing one becomes a condition of employment for “high-risk” jobs like trucking in 3…2…1

    2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      No wrist sensor for when you drink too much toxic water or breath in too much polluted air.

      It’s like education – it’s about making you into doing something for the economy, not for you, yourself.

      “Oh, my god. This man has eaten too much genetically modified salmon. His wrist sensor readings are off the scale. Stop all GM salmon production NOW!!!”

      That kind of wrist sensor will never happen.

  10. Jim Haygood

    Clicked off the Top Economic Blogs article the instant I saw the hairy-handed Krugthulhu in the No. 1 slot.

    Bad filter, bad results.

  11. Romancing the Loan

    The Quartz article was disturbing in how quickly it just waved over the claim that manufacturing is gone from the US forever and there can be no going back, period. One good hurricane hitting those highly efficient just in time shipping chains and the benefits of domestic production might not be able to be so quickly dismissed.

    And what’s really keeping all production offshore other than lower wages, cheap shipping, and looser environmental protections? None of these are a law of nature – they’re deliberate policy that we could change.

    I think this article is intended to feverishly hide the ball pretending that you can support anything like a humane economy and a decent level of employment based only on services.

    1. fresno dan

      Romancing the Loan
      May 20, 2016 at 10:28 am
      I agree.
      A lot of the economic rationale for off shoring is based on various regulations and tax “benefits” – funny, but who “benefits” from these lost jobs is one of those things that is crazy about economics.
      GDP has gone up every year but one in the last 2 dozen years – yet the percentage of the benefits goes OVERWHELMINGLY to the richest. We can see it hollowing out the country, but that worship of “GDP” blinds our high priests (i.e., economists) AKA shills for the rich, to the damage done by the theoretical benefits of “free trade”
      Yeah, everybody knows how much “free trade” is beneficial – – to the rich!

    2. Left in Wisconsin

      Also agree. This is the president of Demos, which is about the best of the big progressive think tanks but still one of the tribe. I scanned the book this is excerpted from and was not impressed.

      That said, she is right that there is no way to bring those manufacturing jobs back absent the political will to punish US firms that export jobs. Which is policy I am pretty sure Demos is not prepared to endorse.

  12. fresno dan

    Maryland Trump delegate indicted after ATF agents find explosives, machine gun and child porn Raw Story (furzy)

    “However, Bailey did have the support of a fellow delegate, Jim Crawford. Crawford told the Beast that he had known Bailey all of his life, and coached his soccer team at one point. The items found on Bailey’s computer, he said, could have come from outside sources.

    “If they found something like that, he just drew a virus,” Crawford said. “Shoot, I know people that’s been affected by viruses. Who’s ever gotten an email that they thought was inappropriate? Heck, there might be that kind of stuff on my computer.”

    ===============================================
    Maybe I have gone full tinfoil hat, but when I think back on Waco, and the DAILY misdeeds and lying from law enforcement agencies that is flagrant and countenanced by judicial/prosecutorial complex, I am beginning to find it suspicious that all these alledged perps are also child porn affectionados.

  13. Amateur Socialist

    Genuinely awful piece on the Nation site yesterday by Joan Walsh. http://www.thenation.com/article/bernie-sanders-is-hurting-himself-by-playing-the-victim/?nc=1

    Looks like it’s getting hammered by commenters about 10:1 against. If this thing makes it into the print edition (I’m hoping the editing process is a little more rigorous) my 30 year continued subscription is over and the money is going to Bernie (and whatever comes next).

    They have published a lot of stuff I disagreed with but this is it.

    1. Waldenpond

      Walsh got called out for her neoliberal bs on twitter yesterday and is now trying to get the person fired.

    2. Amateur Socialist

      The massive advertising presence by HRC on The Nation’s site has me wondering: Can I cost the campaign money by clicking on those links? Ok I realize some of it goes to the magazine (and ultimately Ms. Walsh) but still…

    3. Kokuanani

      Does it count as a click for her if I go straight to the comments?

      Ditto re the reprehensible Krugman.

    4. Anne

      Walsh must be the designated Hillary shill, as the magazine itself has endorsed Bernie, here

      Walsh is getting toasted in the comments – lot of subscription cancellations!

    5. Roger Smith

      That is literally one of the most off base arguments anyone could make. Clinton’s entire campaign has been about “her” (see the slogan) and how she has constantly and historically been victimized. She is the one who cannot be held to “two standards” yet I guess Sanders doesn’t get that concession here. Woe is me! Woe is me!

    6. FluffytheObeseCat

      The repellent part of it is……….. Joan Walsh will see the comments storm as a validation of her “rational” position. She has been a distinctly conservative (in the old sense of the word) neo-liberal creature for >15 years now. Her detractors will be dismissed as ‘Berniebros’.

      She is a very well connected, comfortable person of a certain age. She doubtlessly feels there is just a little something wrong with those who have one or two basic bills they can’t pay off in full every month. She is probably not even aware that she feels this way; she’s too much of self-identified liberal to think such a thing in concrete, verbal terms. But……… an unacknowledged, un-verbalized distaste for such losers is likely.

      At the moment, that prissy pip David Brooks is looking far more humane than the rest of the punditocracy.

  14. tegnost

    From shadowproof article, Joan Walsh quote “Walsh suggested Sanders wants to turn “the first female presidential nominee into a corrupt caricature of herself, a cross between Carly Fiorina and Marie Antoinette,” Thanks for clearing that up, sounds about right, but I’d personally excise “caricature of herself”, that’s really who she is. Any hillary supporters who’d like to correct the record are free to give me one reason to vote FOR clinton (without referring to any other candidate, what is clinton running on? Why should I vote for her…I’ll check in periodically in order to be enlightened, considering the certainty of her coronation it should be easy, I hope there’s enough room on the page to hold all the fantastic-ness)

    1. Jim Haygood

      $14 million advances and $5 million royalties for authors!

      Hillary smashed that ceiling. Now we can all sharpen our quills and go to scribbling.

      It’ll be a new golden age of literature. My agent’s already shopping my latest title, Dow 36,000: How You Can Get In On the Ground Floor of Hillary’s Business Boom.

    2. nippersmom

      Joan Walsh needs to learn the definition of the word “caricature”. Hillary is grotesquely corrupt already; no exaggeration is required. In my opinion, any comparison between Clinton and Marie Antoinette favors Marie Antoinette.

  15. Kurt Sperry

    Trump if elected will bend to the will of the Republican insiders (who frankly aren’t that different from the Dem insiders) and govern as he is told to govern I’m convinced. He seems to possess almost no political or ideological foundations and generally just seems to say whatever he thinks will be popular with the group of people he’s addressing. That by the way is or can be a very useful trait in a politician. Hillary and Obama (and most other successful politicians) also have that knack–of saying whatever will get the short term result desired and then contradict that the moment it becomes inconvenient or there’s a price to be paid for following through on it. Having actual principles or a cogent political philosophy just gets in the way of pandering and making deals and getting in rounds of golf. That’s in large part why I think the fear mongering about a Trump administration is ultimately baseless. Like his likely opponent and his predecessor he’ll just do whatever is politically expedient at the moment–and that doesn’t really change much from one administration to the next.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Trump is rich. He’s a billionaire.

      Being rich, one worry is that people will want to take some from you – your competitors or people who don’t like you. Even going to a restaurant can be challenging, and having good lawyers helps. But when you take on other rich people, there is strength in their numbers. So, it takes a brave person to stand up.

  16. Jim Haygood

    Fresh trouble in the Bolivarian Workers Paradise:

    Coca-Cola FEMSA has suspended all production in Venezuela because of a sugar shortage, the Mexican beverage multinational said in a statement.

    The company, the largest Coke bottler in the world, told workers sugar supplies were too low and that the problem could persist for months, according to several media reports. Coca-Cola FEMSA, which operates across Latin America, said 90% of its products require sugar. At the same time, the company said that while it was closing its central office in Venezuela, it was not exiting the country.

    Last month, Polar Group, Venezuela’s largest food and beverage company and biggest private company overall, said it would suspend production of beer and other malt beverages because of a lack of barley.

    http://fortune.com/2016/05/20/coke-venezuela-suspends/

    *grabs a machete to cut some cane*

    1. Jim Haygood

      A Guatemalan commentator, Daniel Fernández Méndez, invokes Thiers Law:

      Thiers’ Law is the reverse of Gresham’s Law. Good money eventually takes bad money out of circulation as the latter becomes abandoned.

      Currently, the US dollar serves as a store of value for Venezuelans, and to a lesser extent, the unit of account. The only function that the bolivar currently serves is as a medium of payments, which is only a matter of time before this function is abandoned, as well.

      Seeing that the US dollar is already serving various functions that replace the Venezuelan currency, it is all too possible that it becomes the undesired successor to the bolivar.

      http://tinyurl.com/jm3z8n6

      Méndez points out that although bolivars are being imported by the planeload, Venezuela’s real money supply (after inflation adjustment) is declining at a 30 percent annual rate.

      The result is exactly what happened in the U.S. during 1929-1932 when one-third of the money supply vaporized: flat-out depression.

    2. ewmayer

      All that refined sugar is bad for you, anyway — they should add aspartame [and whaetver other non-sugar sweeteners are used in sodas these days] to the list of items in the proposed oil-for-drugs swap with India, switch the nation to diet soda, and switch most of the sugarcane acreage to growing life’s genuine necessities, like barley for beer. The nation will be both healthier and happier for it!

  17. tegnost

    Quartz article…seems to me dems have bought into the coordinated talking points thing, suddenly “aspirations” are popping up in their discourse, invariably with a rosy phrase about hillary
    “their dreams or their aspirations. Donald is all about angry white men. Bernie is all about inequality and Wall Street. Hillary is offering lofty promises to rebuild “the ladders of opportunity.” Angry white men, grumbling losers hate wall st, and (with quotations no less) “ladders of opportunity”, always at the end of the article,too, kind like an editorial insertion…are angry white men aspirational?, is inequality and wall st. aspirational? No, but “ladders of opportunity”…you decide…looks like a veal pen to me.

  18. JEHR

    RE: Bullshit (It is rather interesting to note that scientific studies have been conducted regarding “bullshit.”)
    When I was compiling information for the blog http://www.goldmansachs666.com, I wrote the following:

    Bullshit and Goldman Sachs
    Yesterday, I was reading the July issue of Harper’s Magazine and came across a delightful essay by Mark Kingwell called “The Language of Work.” Kingwell teaches philosophy at the University of Toronto. Here’s the paragraph that jumped out at me and made me think of Goldman Sachs:

    Jargon, slogans, euphemisms, and terms of art are all weapons in the upgrade/downgrade tradition. We might class them together under the technical term bullshit, set out by philosopher Harry Frankfurt. The routine refusal to speak with regard to the truth is called bullshit because evasion of normativity–correctness being, after all, a standard external to one’s personal desires–produces a kind of ordure, a dissemination of garbage, the scattering of shit. This is why, Frankfurt argues, bullshit is far more threatening, and politically evil, than lying. The bullshitter “does not reject the authority of truth, as the liar does, and oppose himself to it. He pays no attention to it at all. By virtue of this, bullshit is a greater enemy of the truth than lies are.”

    . . . .
    The apologists for Goldman Sachs are inclined to use euphemistic bullshit words also by saying, for example, that the banks “took unconscionable risks,” showed “a tendency…to push leverage and risk taking to the extreme,” suffered “weak financial regulation,”and “overconfidence,” etc., when they really mean Goldman Sachs committed fraud and lied about it. Bove and Sorkin make abject apologies for Goldman Sachs in bullshit terms too.

    So I believe I understand why Levin kept insisting to Goldman executives that they made “shitty” deals, using their own word, and repeating it over and over. However, when Levin insisted on saying that Goldman Sachs “misled” Congress and “misled” the inquiry, he himself became a user of bullshit words, probably for legal reasons.

    But the biggest bullshitters of all are Blankfein, Viniar, Cohn and Broderick all of Goldman Sachs fame.

    1. rich

      You might include Fed talking heads, too………….need for higher rates??

      Hedge fund took out loan for private jet amid bribery inquiry

      Under its debt covenants, Och-Ziff is under pressure to retain the $42bn investors have put into its funds.
      According to its financial statements, the hedge fund’s total fee-paying assets under management must not fall below $22bn for two successive quarters or it will be judged to be in default against its five-year unsecured revolving credit facility.<————

      http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/70e9b236-1d0d-11e6-b286-cddde55ca122.html#ixzz49CSs3i8M

      Wonder what higher rates would do to others in same situation?

  19. Tooearly

    The real question must be what are we going to do and not what is sanders going to do…

    1. cwaltz

      I think people kind of already know what they are going to do. It’s more fun to strategize for Bernie.

      Meh, I am already prepared for Bernie to do whatever he needs to do and I’ll be doing the same.

      There will be no vote for Hillary Clinton or her surrogates. If the DNC is going to be remade (and I’m not convinced it can mind you)the third way has to die to make way for a Newer Deal. Perhaps as the DNC enjoys its irrelevance for a few years it can remake itself into something worth voting for. If not, it can enjoy it’s irrelevance forever as far as I’m concerned.

  20. Kim Kaufman

    I have noticed the similarity between Ted Cruz’s appearance and an anteater and the antidote supports this very well.

  21. Robert Dudek

    A city in Rajahstan set a new ASIAN record for highest recorded temperature at 51 celsius. Hundreds, possibly thousands will die of heat related causes in India this year.

    1. JustAnObserver

      Just a note: For those used to those Exceptional Degrees (TM) used in the US 51C =~ 123F.

  22. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Uber and Lyft.

    Can one get a rickshaw with either one of them?’

    For rickshaw drivers, the math might work…less costly maintenance.

  23. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Is China a house of cards?

    Well, that house is tall…it’s a skyscraper.

    And around it are many hovels.

  24. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Oil for drugs…India and Venezuela.

    You never have trade deficits by no-debt bartering…and it cuts out the middleman currency.

    Additionally, neither country needs to worry about the risk of holding each other’s potentially worthless sovereign fiat currency.

  25. ewmayer

    Re. the proposed Venezuela/India oil-for-meds swap: I find this interesting because although the longtime economic truism is that barter is a poor basis for an economy of scale, ironically this seems to be true more at small scales than large. Here we have an example in which any given Indian drugmaker would likely not be able to trade its products for Venezuelan oil because of the need for transport and, distribution infrastructure, but with the government’s backing such an exchange becomes feasible at the consortium level. I.e. the aforementioned truism is turned upside-down: barter is a poor basis for a small-scale economy, but can work quite nicely at the national-economic level.

    [p.s.@Kim Kaufman above: Another crucial difference is that an anteater only sucks on ants, whereas a Ted Cruz ‘sucks on so many levels’.]

  26. Cry Shop

    China: Is it Alibaba or just the old Allie-opp?

    The growth in the number of restaurants in Shanghai last year was over 50 percent, she said. In Guangzhou, the growth rate was even more stunning: 200 percent.

    The reason for the mushrooming of eateries is fairly simple: the decline of retail stores in shopping malls.

    The ratio of restaurants to retailers in a mall used to be one to 10. Now, almost two out of every five mall outlets are restaurants. The excessive supply of restaurants is bad news to (mall) operators, as there are not enough diners for all of them to make money.

    1. perpetualWAR

      Isn’t that what’s happening here in the US? My neighbor closed his card shop down aftwe 30 years. He joked and said he should have turned it into a tavern.

      Booze and bongs. The two things selling in Seattle.

Comments are closed.