Links 5/31/16

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Bumblebees’ Little Hairs Can Sense Flowers’ Electric Fields NPR (David L)

Glyphosate Found in Urine of 93 percent of Americans Tested EcoWatch (furzy).

Desperate Christians try luring millennials to faith with ’emoji’ Bible Raw Story (furzy)

A massive new study links being a workaholic to a myriad of other psychiatric disorders Quartz (resilc). Correlation is not causation. They point out that the ADHD might lead to overwork to compensate. And in no case did a majority of workaholics exhibit the “psychiatric disorder”.

A misplaced mea culpa for neoliberalism Financial Times. Editorial. Whinging and misguided. An interesting indicator of how thin-skinned the elites have become.


Along the new Silk Road, a city built on sand is a monument to China’s problems Washington Post. David L: “​Don’t miss the replica of the Parthenon!!​”

China to send nuclear-armed submarines into Pacific amid tensions with US Guardian

The disgrace of Obama’s Hiroshima visit is the $1 trillion the U.S. is wasting on new nukes, not just the refusal to apologize Salon

US accused of undermining WTO Financial Times

The only continent with weaker economic growth than Europe is Antarctica Boris Johnson, Telegraph

Reigniting Emerging-Economy Growth Project Syndicate (David L)

Refugee Crisis

VIDEO: Sweden’s Migrant Rape Epidemic Gatestone Institute. Furzy: “A fair illustration of Europe’s migrant problem…fortunately, not like this in the US, as most Muslims are satisfied with their jobs, good schools, communities, and many say they immigrated to get away from Sharia law, etc…maybe in time this will change in the EC.”

Why Varoufakis’ DiEM2025 is fighting the wrong fight Defend Democracy

France to the Barricades

Clashes, oil blockades over France’s economic future Associated Press

Italy’s broken banks show the dangers behind the euro Telegraph


Brexit ‘an enormous economic problem’ BBC

Brexiteers turn attention to toppling Cameron Financial Times

Canada’s energy superpower status threatened as world shifts off fossil fuel, federal think-tank warns CBC (martha r)


Does Venezuela’s Crisis Prove Socialism Doesn’t Work? Counterpunch (Sid S). An in-depth explanation of what went wrong from a long-term resident.

Venezuela: Pro-Govt Supporters Being Killed in Record Numbers teleSUR (martha r)


US Navy SEALs Training in Bulgaria to Storm Russia’s Crimea Sputnik (furzy)

Putin Says Russia Must Retaliate for Missile Sites in Romania, Poland SOTT


Air strikes on Isis in Iraq and Syria are reducing their cities to ruins Independent (furzy)

‘Final assault’ on IS in Falluja begins BBC

The US is dropping calls for Assad to go because the Syrian regime is a better bet than Isis Independent (furzy)

Erdogan Says “Contraception is Treason, Women Not Equal to Men, Muslims Must Multiply Descendants “ Michael Shedloc (furzy)

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

Data watchdog rejects EU-US Privacy Shield pact BBC

Risking all to flee Islamic State Bangkok Post (furzy)

Anti-Choice Groups Use Smartphone Surveillance to Target ‘Abortion-Minded Women’ During Clinic Visits Rewire (Chuck L)

Imperial Collapse Watch

Ticking Closer to Nuclear Midnight Consortiumnews

Clinton E-mail Tar Baby

Hillary Clinton’s endless lies Boston Herald (martha r). Editorial.

US Intelligence Veterans Urge Fast Report on Hillary Clinton’s Emails: “NSA, FBI Have Enough Evidence Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (martha r)


How to Explain the Sanders Campaign to an Idiot, Paul Krugman or a Clintonite in 8 Sentences Huffington Post (martha r)

Cenk Uygur to Sanders Supporters: Barbara Boxer Deserved To Be Booed — It Is Time To Get Louder RealClearPolitics (martha r)

The Bernie Congress: meet the insurgents trying to recreate Sanders’s movement down ballot Vox (martha r)

Bernie’s Backers Prevail At Democratic State Convention Civil Beat News. Martha r: “Detail on Hawaii.”

Democratic Nomination Battle is Not Over Yet Real News

New Poll: Voters Feel ‘Helpless’ About Election New York Magazine (resilc)

Submit Testimony to the Democratic Platform 2016 Democratic National Convention (martha r)

Robert Reich: It’s time for Clinton and Sanders supporters to swallow some tough medicine Raw Story. I had ignored this because it struck me as patronizing but it seems to be making the rounds. As martha r points out:

This has turned me off to reich, who I’ve kinda thought was OK. It’s the father-knows-best tone as much as anything else. And saying HRC has “shown herself a capable and responsible leader.” He does not say when she did that, because he can’t. We’re supposed to buy it just because he says so? Whom is such a statement, at this point in time, going to mollify?

Trump unleashes tirade against Bill Kristol over independent bid. Slate (resilc)

WSJ editor: Trump needs to be destroyed in the November election to teach GOP voters a lesson Raw Story (furzy)

We’ve seen Donald Trump’s type of populism in Africa, it always ends in tears Quartz (resilc)

Even in victory, Donald Trump can’t stop airing his grievances Washington Post (furzy) There goes Nikki Haley as a possible VP.

Vancouver millennials inspired to run for office Columbian (martha r)

‘Low vol’ funds attract more than $10bn of inflows this year Financial Times

CEO Bonuses: How Pro Forma Results Boost Them Wall Street Journal (Li)

Class Warfare

Foxconn replaces ‘60,000 factory workers with robots’ BBC

Antidote du jour. Stephen L has provided many wildlife pictures. This is his dog Pies:

pies_black_and_white_on_floor links

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. Nickname

    Re Rape in Sweden:

    That video is sheer propaganda and is by no means “A fair illustration of Europe’s migrant problem”. Just look into what the Gatestone Institute is and who is behind it – Alan Dershowitz (need I say more) and John Bolton among others. From its wikipedia page:

    “The organization believes that traditional news outlets conduct insufficient and, as a result, misleading reporting on critical issues, and thus it distributes its own information about events in the Middle East and Muslim populations in other parts of the world.” (In other words, not anti-Muslim enough)

    And about its founder Nina Rosenwald: “Rosenwald has focused on donating to pro-Israel organizations. She has been “an ardent Zionist all her life”.[4] Some critics have categorized her and the Gatestone Institute as anti-Muslim”

    No agenda there….

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Watch out for imperial warrior-migrants.

      They have been known to scare a lot of local girls.

    2. lindaj

      Thank you! I went and looked them up as soon as I watched the video. Right-wing scare mongering. John Bolton!!!! Yipes!

  2. Steve H.

    – How to Explain the Sanders Campaign to an Idiot, Paul Krugman or a Clintonite in 8 Sentences

    Punctuation abuse. Compare to 12-Point Platform.

    1. Roger Smith

      I went to that expecting to see a quick, effective 8 sentences. Once I saw the mess, I left.

      1. Steve H.

        I tried to finish but glazed.

        But a good outcome. While searching for the 12-Point Platform I refound the 12-Word Platform, most brev.

        1. Lambert Strether

          The problem is that you can’t do what needs to be done in 12 words (if you want to be exhaustive, although you could break it into tranches). Hence, it’s not really a platform.

          And you need the 12 Reforms to go along with. Can we really accomplish anything without hand-marked paper ballots counted in public? The Democratic primary tells us no.

          The problems are systemic and deeply intertwingled. Proposals need to be as simple as possible, but no simpler.

      2. Lambert Strether

        The headline is wrong. The article is really a brain-dump of all the possible talking points. That’s not a bad thing, but it’s not what the headline promised.

  3. craazyman

    Deep Thoughts Time After Gazing Out the Window of a Train

    shlt it sounds like bees ight be workaholics and if they are, is that how they can sense flowers’ electric fields through their hairs? it looks to me like bees are having fun when they flit around. They seem happy! That’s what I’ve noticed. I can feel it through my hairs. It’s a bit weird, I admit. Not even needing drugs to have these perceptions. But sometimes you need Xanax to calm them down.

    It’s true flowers have electric fields. That’s pretty obvious, just from channeling. you can even close your eyes and feel the fields. The grass’s electric fields is much calmer but the flowers’ fields jump around, that’s why they have so many colors. that’s what it takes to produce the colors.

    YOu can be a workaholic like a bee or a workaholic like a slave. it’s not like there’s only one kind of workaholic. Some people would call passion for creation a disorder. It can possibly be, that’s true. But it may be a disorder to call it a disorder. How do you know what’s the disorder and what’s the order? That is not entirely easy. IT’s like economic activity. How do you know what’s utility maximization and efficiency and what’s a paved road to Hell? Even paving the road to hell creates jobs. Evidently you can’t evaluate a phenomenon with the set of ideas intrinsic to the phenomenon. You need ideas outside the phenomenon. I think that’s something like Gödel’s Theorem or something. That’s how you can tell bees are happy workaholics and that some workaholics are ecstatic tending flowers that bloom in other dimensions. You need to observe from a vantage point outside all the accepted modes of logic and perception that usually forms the basis of scientific analysis.

    1. MtnLife

      Being a workaholic can be good or bad. The important question is: are you a slave to your passion or to your greed? Being a slave to ones passion is like a permanent ride on the roller coaster of new love, where the simplest experiences constantly bring boundless joy. Being a slave to your greed is more like being a crack addict, forever chasing an diminishing ephemeral high that leaves nothing but an empty void in its wake. I work what my wife considers far too much but it brings me happiness and I can safely say I’m doing exactly what I’d be doing if money weren’t an issue. I’d be getting a lot more progress made faster if I had more resources but the path wouldn’t wander.
      Building the road to hell may create jobs but the real money is in financing said road. The cost overruns would be beyond the wild, absinthe induced fantasies of even the great vampire squid itself.

      1. aletheia33

        have you ever tried greed? or how about the lust for power? how do you know it’s not as good a high?

        1. jrs

          Well you usually need to be born into a certain position to try those in the first place (neither wealth nor power is much available to most). OTOH weed is soon to be legal almost everywhere.

          1. aletheia33

            you don’t need to have much $$ to experience greed. i would venture to say most americans experience it at least once a week if not every day.

            you don’t need to have much power to experience lust for power. just about everyone i know has tried very hard to control the people around them at one point or another. and when one succeeds, there is always a hit of power-high, whatever else is going on.

            and what about those who “come from nothing” and “make it,” and just keep devouring everything they can, or manipulating every institution they can, trying to fill that hole that can never be filled? sure, they may be unusual, but their story has been told many times over the centuries.

            the craving for resources and power is a human tendency. societies are better or worse at managing it. it seems to get most out of hand in empires. as such, it is in the long run self-correcting.

      1. craazyman

        wow. I’m a zeta male not an alpha male. I’m lazy, I’ve never done anything in my life that’s worth noting, and I’m a loser. I couldn’t do anything remotely close to what supermen do! haha. But if I can somehow score a 10-bagger things might change. Then I’d have pep in my step, my muscles would ripple under my shirt and if you’re a hot woman walking down the street I’d point at you and that would be it, the force of nature would be overwhelming and you’d lose consciousness. hahahahahaah

        1. aletheia33

          ah i see that you have discerned that i am hot. do not be discouraged, did you know that the most interesting and exciting women are far more attracted to men who truly like them and want to talk with them and hear what they have to say than to men who have scored 10-baggers, which is all about ego, machismo, and competing with other men to buy hot-looking (but maybe not really hot) trophy women? at least some women. other women only want to know your financial status and that 10-bagger plays into that. do you really want to go there? i think you deserve better female heat than that.

          1. craazyman

            what about a guy who truly likes them, is interested in what they have to say AND has scored a 10-bagger?

            For me, it’s going to happen any month now. So far, I haven’t blown myself up, mostly by avoiding any trading at all. But I’ll put on the trade soon and then it will go straight up. My problem was reading all the Doom & Gloom macroeconomics articles they post here at NC, and believing them! Wow, that was bad. It’s at the point now I can hardly read one without my whole body retching with mental nausea. That happened to me once before when I drank too much vegetable juice for weeks. I had a spinach, beet, apple and carrot drink one day and I threw up. I’m serious. It was weird. I thought it was supposed to be good for you. Budweiser is much better. Evidently.

            Do you weight less than 150 lbs? I think I could probably be interested in what you have to say — if you’re reasonably hot and don’t mind if I spend hours by myself between bouts of intensely romantic activities.

            1. aletheia33

              “what about a guy who truly likes them, is interested in what they have to say AND has scored a 10-bagger?”
              it depends. for one thing–does he weigh less than 150 lbs.? (budweiser also relevant here)
              re: vegetable juice incident: it was probably the spinach.
              alas i weigh a bit more than 150. but you have to take into account that i am just a bit under 6 feet tall. i mean, whaddya want, a scarecrow? my weight is “healthy” according to the FDA (or whoever makes up those nos., maybe its NIMH)
              i am more than reasonably hot (according to male testimony).
              hours by yourself is fine, in fact i like hours by myself too. between bouts of intensely romantic activities.
              am i interested?
              well, it depends. what kind of romantic part would precede the intense part? this matters to girls.

                1. Ulysses

                  Are you really willing to put in the work required to pull off such a neatly trimmed moustache and goatee??!?

                2. craazyboy

                  The eye mask is good! I hope you’re considering how to work it in to your ensemble. I like the cloak too, but wouldn’t this make pocket squares problematic? I guess fashion is mainly a matter of a myriad of choices, so maybe the pocket square would have to go. But then I’d consider bringing back the ascot. That would work well with a cloak, I think. Then Edward Green probably has a model of shoe or boot intended for pairing with a cloak, so you’d just need to add to your collection there.

                  But the eye mask is really something IMO. That could be thing that transforms you from being merely a follower of high men’s fashion to being a trendsetter! You’d get looks I’m sure. Even in New Yawk.

                3. aletheia33

                  i could care less about the moustache, the goatee, the mask, the vintage hat, heraldric cufflinks, etc. it is all about the sound of his voice, what he says to me, and the way he says it. and he says he could probably be interested in what i have to say if i’m “reasonably” (?) hot and don’t mind if he spends hours by himself between bouts of intensely romantic activities. which i am, and i don’t. ah craazyman, where can we get a room for your, i mean my, audition? alas, at this distance, it may be a challenge to assure you that i am sufficiently hot.


                    1. aletheia33

                      oh, too bad. but i can tell you i weigh below 180. and am at the NIMH’s healthy weight for my height. if i am to maintain that, however, i cannot split even 1 budweiser with you. so that might be a bit of a downer. it’s really up to you. i already mentioned to you how tall i am. to be exact it is 70 inches. if you do not find tall women with healthy bodies at least “reasonably” hot…

            2. optimader

              Craazyman, you have a potential GF or a potential stalker.
              Get a friend to wear a white carnation and meet her at a bench in central park, Approach with caution if you dare.. while donning your carnation

              you know that the most interesting and exciting women are far more attracted to men who truly like them and want to talk with them and hear what they have to say than to men who have scored 10-baggers,
              Be warned, she is searching for the elusive Unicorn, or your gay doppleganger.

                1. optimader

                  Nothing wrong w/ being the being a benign talker.. its a lifestyle and a passion! Refreshing to know what you want.

                  I ‘ll concede, never been to Versailles.
                  I can admire the craft work from afar, heck of a crib. But secretly the sht on sht decorating has never been my style. Proletariat roots? I dunno.

                  In France, i’ll invariably fall into this kinda environment:
                  Zaz à Montmartre : Les passants all sweaty seeking out beer after a bike ride.

                  I will say, it would appear Madame de Pompadour would probably have been captain of her Ivy League Field Hockey team! ;o)

                  Mdm P probably could have kicked craazymans ass, which should by all rights appeal to him.

                  1. aletheia33

                    “Mdm P probably could have kicked craazymans ass, which should by all rights appeal to him.”

                    i know, but he seems to be worried about me being too heavy. perhaps you could put in a word for me. explain that i am just a gentle giant.

                    i agree on the decor at versailles. just too much. perhaps you noticed i did not say i’ve ever been there. lucky you that you have.

                    i too have some proletariat roots. good peasant stock before that. tall women good for breeding and farming. please don’t mention this to craazyman, i suspect he is a bit of a snob.

                    although that restaurant he linked to did look a tad cheesy i must say. but i don’t want to hurt his feelings by mentioning it to him.

                    ps thanx for the cool parisian music

                    1. optimader

                      well aletheia33 , I’d have an adult beverage w/ you sometime when in NYC, for no more reason than that you’re clever. Ill bring a tape measure we can compare notes.

                      BTW nothing wrong with tall, its a good thing, If fact, that’s what so many more diminutive women aspire to while ruining their feet w/ absurd and expensive shoes.

                      As I said, never been to Versailles. If I eventually do, it would be due to my curiosity about the fountains and gardens.

                      I would try to making arrangements for a hydraulic tour.
                      All done without pumps back in the day That aspect is pretty amazing.

                    2. aletheia33

                      very interesting on the versailles fountains. i too would be interested in the gardens more than the interiors. have you ever looked into the croton aqueduct? (assuming you are in NY)

                      perhaps we would have enough in common to keep a conversation going for at least 5 minutes. so i would join you for that beverage sometime in NYC. which i get to only once in a blue moon (finances and work prohibit more). i did go down to visit occupy. that was the last time.

                      but what about craazyman, and craazyboy? methinks they would add something to our table. they might be able to keep some kind of conversation going for longer than 5 minutes.

                      by the way, be warned that in person i am far from clever. in fact i can be quite a shy lump. i can only be somewhat clever anonymously in writing and when swimming in the illustrious waters of nc where a bit of cleverness rubs off on me. but i’ll take that as a compliment and thank you.

        2. fresno dan

          ” I’m lazy, I’ve never done anything in my life that’s worth noting, and I’m a loser. I couldn’t do anything remotely close to what supermen do! ”

          You say that AS IF IT WERE A BAD THING
          I see no reason to work all that hard. Everybody who wants you to work hard wants you to buy sh*t – look it up. And when my self says I have to work harder, I say, – self -, if work is so great, do it yourself – I’m in charge of the body and I’m having a beer and than taking a nap…

          1. Jim Haygood

            Besides the personal aspect, one of the effects of ‘progressive’ income taxation is that the harder you work, the more you feed the Beast.

            Work less; screw the Depublicrat war machine. Giving money to a sociopathic murderer like Obama damages the soul.

            1. Lumpenproletariat

              Many of the high earners aren’t even hard workers, and are even less likely to be contributing towards anything but their own padded bank accounts.

              Democracy is failing partially because people have been brainwashed to think that hard work will inevitably be rewarded. Do you see any fruit pickers getting rich? Furthermore the long hours stunt our ability to reason or even empathize, let alone organize with others who are stuck in the same predicament.

              1. NeqNeq

                “Furthermore the long hours stunt our ability to reason or even empathize, let alone organize with others who are stuck in the same predicament.”

                What evidence do you have for this claim?

                1. Lumpenproletariat

                  Personal experience? Conversations with others who also worked long hours purely in exchange for money?

                  After an 80 hour week (don’t scoff, it is commonplace in most professional firms), people become numb and enervated and literally have no physical nor cognitive strength left.

                  Unless you are trying to play the contrary an or inexplicably associate long work hours with creativity, I can’t see why you would question it.

                  1. NeqNeq

                    I would be hesitant to rely on such a small sample size for making such broad generalizations. Given the “professional firms” exemplar, I would guess that you fit into a very small demographic and so your experiences are more the result of the particularities of that environment (guessing: urban/semi-urban, educational and career choices highly subject to selection effects, social norms of the professional careers, etc) than the hours you spend engaged in toil.

                    Not bashing you or your experience, just suggesting that there is a whole world out there full of people working similar hours who do not lack in empathy, reasoning capacity, or cooperative spirit.

                  1. Lumpenproletariat

                    Aren’t you and Neqneq the same person? And why would you think long hours AREN’T damaging to cognitive processes?

            2. Plenue

              You seriously think the richest of the rich works hard? Golf courses and sitting in expensive leather chairs are not work. And feeding the beast? Giving money to Obama? I guess we have to explain to you that federal taxes don’t fund anything.

              And what’s your solution? Flat tax rate that hurts those at the bottom and merely deprives those at the top of some disposable income?

              Also this:

              I am conscious that an equal division of property is impracticable. But the consequences of this enormous inequality producing so much misery to the bulk of mankind, legislators cannot invent too many devices for subdividing property, only taking care to let their subdivisions go hand in hand with the natural affections of the human mind. The descent of property of every kind therefore to all the children, or to all the brothers and sisters, or other relations in equal degree is a politic measure, and a practicable one. Another means of silently lessening the inequality of property is to exempt all from taxation below a certain point, and to tax the higher portions of property in geometrical progression as they rise. – Thomas Jefferson, Letter to James Madison, 28 Oct. 1785

    2. direction

      lovely! Thanks for your ruminations. Trains and boats and bicycles are so much more conducive to thinking and feeling than cars, even as a passenger in a car. You reminded me to look up pictures of the reflected UV light patterns that allow insects to see drab yellow flowers differently than we see them. They are all so busy talking with smells we can’t hear. And thanks for reminding me to recall that once upon a time there were projects I loved to dive into and workaholic myself blissfully. I never figured how to get paid for being a workaholic. The hours and years of drudgery I did get paid for made me forget that once upon a time I fully enjoyed working.

    3. Jim Haygood

      ‘Even paving the road to hell creates jobs.’

      Yes! That’s been our national policy for 70 years now.

      Are we there yet?

      1. craazyman

        anything I don’t want to do but have to, usually for money.

        that would make lots of high paid jobs not really work, like being a weatherman on TV or a fashion model or even a CEO. They’d do these things anyway because they want to. CEOs mostly go to parties and dinners. What’s not to like?

        work is mostly stuff that doesn’t pay anything then kills you.

        1. Optimader

          I like to ask that question people have different perceptions of what work is.

          So was Picasso a workaholic? Prolific and and commercially successful in any form of art he indulged. He got to “work” in beautiful places and had a great lifestyle til a very old age.
          By my defintion not work

          Contrast with Van Gogh. Cranked out artwork feverishly and if he didnt have bad luck, he had no luck at all. He sold only two paintings in his short lifetime before assessing himself a failure and commiting suicide at age37.

          So, was painting “work” for Van Gogh?
          It paid nothing and ultimately killed him.

          The cruel joke being his work now is some of the most valuable artwork in the world.
          Still though, more passion than work IMO.

          Wouldn’t it have been nice if your great great grandmother was his landlord and took paintings of bedrooms and sunflowers in lieu od cash?

          Van Goghs Bedrooms Exhibit

          1. craazyman

            He was a sick man. Let’s not romanticize it. I would call it a passion for the work but i wouldn’t call it “work”. That’s what the Potato Eaters diid that’s work. He was a meticulous, calculating rigorous craftsman. One of the best. Really. His experiments with color broke down doors of perception that endured for 100 years. His experiments with perspective, line, contour shape, his portrature and use of color there, his evocation of the rhythms of nature in his compositions. His understanding of anatomy and form. C;mon man! He was a meticulous crafstman and sadly it all gets lost in “the dark glamour of his madness”. His illness was a parallel thing but not the main thing. Im not a Van Gogh expert but I have reasonably seriously looked into this. Anybody who has seriously tried to draw and paint can look at his work and be utterly amazed at the excellence of it.

            1. optimader

              Yes, well I agree with much of what you say, I am just making a point on the mercurial nature of what “work” is/means.

              Where I do disagree is: and sadly it all gets lost in “the dark glamour of his madness”.
              I don’t think that is the case, or actually is what you mean. Clearly VVG was mad, but the work stands on it’s own merit, no assistance of glamour rqd.

              Sadly, had VVG at least made a modest living w/ his art he might have lived longer and created more.

              Fast forward, the irony is if VVG were alive today, he’d medicated and we probably wouldn’t be admiring:

              Personally I would probably vote for leaving him unmediated, well fed and painting works of art, rather than medicating him so he could wash dishes and draw stickmen on yellow legal pads at the Home.
              Is that a moral dilemma?

              If you like VVG, this was a fascinating exhibit.. time flies! :o/

              1. aletheia33

                was he actually “sick” all the time? i thought he had some periods of relative normalcy, but i’m not in the know.

                what made me worship van gogh was last summer’s show at the clark of what was billed as “van gogh and nature.” OMG my friends had to drag me out of there. i wish i had gone back for a 2nd immersion.

                there was an early one painted in holland that was in a more traditional style, it showed a very dark late sunset with woods. perhaps not a great painting, i can’t really tell, but it was for me quite powerful.

                this one blew me away. it was completed just before he died. the image does not do it justice. “rain–auvers”:


                and look at this one, “butterflies and poppies”:


                this article has more from this extraordinary show:


        2. aletheia33

          “anything i don’t want to do but have to, usually for money.”

          craazyman, what is it about today? you took the words right out of my mouth. clearly the stars want to bring us together. especially since i wish to avoid working today.

          1. craazyman

            I’m getting suspicious that you’re not presenting yourself as you truly are. :-)

            You’re not a drag queen are you? C’mon be honest. I’m a very very straight guy. Straighter than a you know what in a whore house. I’m not into the “Sheila was a man” thing. That’s an old song about a guy who finds out the hard way about those things. No pun intended. I don’t want to be toyed with and teased! That would interfere with my lay around doing nothing time. OK, I could probably do 175 if you’re really a hot woman, but 180+ would be difficult.

            1. aletheia33

              to be honest, i am very flattered that you suspect me of being a drag queen. as if!!! that schtick doesn’t come cheap. plus i really am not the performing kind. i am a total introvert. i prefer the woods, my dog, and my bow and arrow to the company of just about anybody. nor, in case you are also wondering, was i ever hockey team material. not a team player.

              thrilled to hear that 175 is maybe OK with you. i do go up to 176 at times but more often am 174. and as i think i have indicated several times to you already, i am easily more than just “reasonably” hot. of course, that is honestly in the eye of the beholder. what do you think of my picture?

              are you sure that no part of you wants to be toyed with at all?

              1. craazyman

                you’ve got a bow and arrow. Holy shit! Do you ever shoot anything? Deer? Squirrles? Trees?

                I liked shooting rifles as a kid. I was quite good and liked to shoot bottles on fencposts, but I never shot an animal

                  1. craazyman

                    I can’t tell if she’s who she says she is or if she’s some nutjob dude wasting my lay around and do nothing time. That would be bad, if she was a drag queen. can you imagine? Oh man. Just thinking about that makes me cringe. I don’t know how gay guys do it. Nor do I care. Can you send your drone over to check her out? ahahahahah

                1. aletheia33

                  don’t worry. i mainly carry them just to discourage any unwanted attentions. something one has to deal with at times when one is hot. plus i have terrible aim. because i have a laazy eye. but maybe you could have taught me how to shoot a shotgun. i inherited one from my father that he was given when he was a boy. he used to use it to shoot groundhogs in the garden. i did not know what to do with it. so i just drove around with it in my car for a few years. until one day i happened to meet a guy who said he could use it. so i gave it to him.

                  as a new yorker i expect you may not be perfectly at ease in the woods. that is OK with me. i can just go there when you are spending hours by yourself.

                  1. craazyman

                    this could work. not at ease in the woods? can’t you channel? don’t go by demographics and logical supposition. I am Mr. Woods. I have spent a great deal of time in the woods back country fly fishing and doing landscape photography (amateur, I’m not being pretentious).

                    The thing about the woods that worries me isn’t animals or even a bear attack. I am not afraid of animals. I do, however, worry about attack from supernatural phenomenon such as fairies, bigfoot or ufo abduction. I don’t think my gene pool predisposes me, my “signal” I think is fairly safe there, but if you have a bow and arrow that would put me somewhat more at ease.

                    I don’t let these concerns stop me, so don’t think I won’t go into the woods under any circumstances. I will. But having a bow and arrow is better than nothing, Rifles and handguns would be even better, but they’re heavy and I’m lazy. The bow and arrow might be just right.

                    1. craazyboy

                      I don’t want to butt in all the time, ’cause your doin’ fine craazyman, but just a few quick inputs…Bow and arrow are kinda useless against fairies ’cause they’re so damn hard to hit. But fairies have an extreme reaction to iron, so I always carry a small jar of iron filings with me at all times. If bigfoot has half a brain he’ll run screaming the other direction if he sees a 6ft tall bow women aiming at him. Ufo abduction is the tough one cause you never know what to expect. Sometimes they just beam you up, then you’re f*cked, if you know what I mean. But you can’t just hid out at home you whole life avoiding the space buggers. You have to take risk in life, like stepping outside once in a while. (but it’s still a good idea to check for falling pianos first, especially in New Yawk.)

                      But it’s good you clarified your position on the woods. Most people would assume you’re just another New Yawk metrosexual and you only see trees on TV. I remember my young Northwoods days and remember some of my best dates were sleeping bag dates. Cheap too! I could even afford ’em today on ZIRP income.

                      I’ll let you get back to you’re courting now. Your doing good! I think she wants to nail your ass!

                    2. aletheia33

                      your fear of fairies probably stems from unconscious guilt at using fairy-like contraptions to catch fish with. give yourself full permission to catch and enjoy eating those fish without any guilt and your fairy phobia will drop away.

                      do you like to build a fire in the woods after fishing? maybe we could have an audition out of doors instead of in a room. we can put some powerful rocks around us that i know will render our camp invisible to bigfoot or any aliens. also i could bring some vegetables.

                      plus please bear in mind that i do have very strong spiritual protection, from sources that i may divulge to you some time. you will be safe with me.

      2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Work in French is travail.

        That is to say, work is pain.

        On another level, for the enlightened, zazen is work.

        That is, work is bliss.

        Now, let’s incorporate that into Work Guarantee.

      1. Optimader

        I skimmed it but will read (listen to) this tonight
        In Bob’s world after we all decide to stop working, who rods out the plumbing, hot patches the asphalt road?

        Thus 95 percent of Americans who work, work for somebody (or something) else.
        i think 100%

        1. cnchal

          . . .who rods out the plumbing, hot patches the asphalt road?

          That’s what robots are for. A FixIt Robot in everybody’s shed, does the jawbs you don’t want to.

      1. diptherio

        It’s a matter of cookies. Try using a different browser or clearing your cash. Also, FT offers a “free subscription” which allows you access behind the paywall a certain number of times per month. A person could, of course, set up multiple free accounts and use them sequentially to gain access to all of FT, but it would be a bit of work. Still, it’s doable. When it comes to paywalls, FT’s is pretty easy to get around, if you’re so inclined.

        1. Synoia

          clearing your cash

          Yes that is what the FT wants.

          What you need to do is “clear your cache”

  4. Benedict@Large

    The only thing that’s probably stopping Hillary’s indictment right now is that it would give the nomination to Sanders, and that’s something the elites will simply never allow. This is why they are hitting at Sanders to drop out as hard as they have been. They can’t take care of their Hillary problem until they take care of their Sanders problem.

    1. Seb

      I agree, but they have to weigh delaying indictment to prevent a Sanders nomination against leaving it hanging above her head during the primaries, as well as the risks of an emergency candidate put forward only after the Convention.

      I don’t think they believe they can get away with a new ticket before the Convention without losing each and every Sanders voter, so the FBI will have to delay another two months.

      Quite the quandary.

    2. RW Tucker

      They aren’t going to have a choice.

      I think Trump backing out of a Sanders debate is a tell: Trump heard that HRC is going to face an indictment, so he’s instead going to prepare for a future debate with a different opponent, not engage in a debate that served to weaken HRC.

      I also think Sanders knew from early on that HRC would face an investigation and possible indictment. You don’t work in DC for decades and not develop relationships with people in the FBI who can feed you updates. Who knows? Maybe some of his former aides or interns are now bureaucrats in the Bureau. Or he’s cultivated some friendships with people at the AD level. Clinton isn’t the only one with political connections.

      1. Antifa

        There are still plenty of parking garages in DC. In All the President’s Men that seemed to be the only places where truth gets told.

      2. optimader

        I think Trump backing out of a Sanders debate is a tell
        Ive read great angst about this. At this juncture a Trump has no strategic reason to debate a Sanders. What’s not obvious about that?
        Backing out of a debate? I doubt this will rank in the top 1,000 sins this POTUS cycle

        1. RW Tucker

          I agree, there’s no strategic reason. The debate was going to be used as a grindstone Hillary. Then, all of a sudden, it’s no longer happening.

          I think Trump encouraging a debate and then backing out around May 25th, when HRC’s email bullshit reached new heights, was telling.

          1. optimader

            I think that would be a Trumps analysis as well.
            In fact a Sanders needs it and a Trump has nothing to gain IMO.

    3. Peter Bernhardt

      Found this today (not sure how I got to it):

      VIPS Urges fast action on Hillary Clinton’s emails

      This pre-dates the IG Report by a few days and now I wonder about that report. While damning to Clinton, as it exposes her as dangerously secretive and an inveterate liar, her surrogates have been trying (unsuccessfully in my view) to argue that it shows she violated no laws and the whole matter ought to be dropped.

      So, was this Obama’s response to the VIPS memorandum? A distraction and a sop that could be spun while the criminal investigation continues its snail pace at the FBI?

      This needs follow through from the MSM. Hope springs eternal.

      1. Peter Bernhardt

        Oh, dear. Face palm and all that. I got to it from the link above. Anyway, my comments stand. ;)

      2. nowhere

        I couldn’t help but chuckle a little at the irony of this:

        “In our view, the sole legitimate reason for disclosing classified information springs from the only “oath” we all took – “to support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies foreign and domestic.” When, for example, Edward Snowden saw the U.S. government grossly violating our Fourth Amendment right to be “secure” against warrantless “searches and seizures,” he gave more weight to that oath (ethicists call it a supervening value) than to the promise he had made not to disclose information that could harm U.S. national security.”

        For the Steering Group, Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS)

        William Binney, Technical Director, NSA; co-founder, SIGINT Automation Research Center (ret.)

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          The tough part is, how do we know some one or some entity is violating the law?

          In some case, it is perhaps clear.

          In others, not so.

          In the former case, a follow up question is, can it be remedied without disclosing?

          Another question is, will disclosing cause more harm to the country itself, or the Constitution?

    4. Jim Haygood

      Rico, rico … (“rich, rich” in Spanish):

      The Huffpo removed an article on its website Sunday claiming that the FBI plans to pursue an indictment against Hillary Clinton on federal racketeering charges.

      HuffPo freelance contributor Frank Huguenard, a scientist and public speaker, posted an article on the site’s blog entitled “Hillary Clinton to be Indicted on Federal Racketeering Charges”. Huguenard wrote:

      James Comey and The FBI [sic] will present a recommendation to Attorney General Loretta Lynch, that includes a cogent argument that the Clinton Foundation is an ongoing criminal enterprise engaged in money laundering and soliciting bribes in exchange for political, policy and legislative favors to individuals, corporations and even governments both foreign and domestic.

      When an author claims to be a “scientist” to bolster credibility, my B.S. meter hits the peg as I reach for my revolver. Plus writing The FBI with a capital ‘T’ suggests a certain naivete or flake quotient.

      But I love the concept of RICOing the Clintons, in a kind of omnibus prosecution that folds in and subsumes all their manifold crimes, cons and wickedness.

      Rico, rico!

      1. Code Name D

        Wow! Racketeering charges under RICO.

        I am forced to wonder why it was pulled. Perhaps they didn’t have sufficient evidence behind it. If true, its quite the bombshell and a bit outside the roomers leaking from the beltway. So I am inclined to dismiss it.

        But under RICO. Yes, now that IS interesting. The main thing under RICO is prosecutors get assume they are dealing with organized crime which include legal maneuverings which might seek to use the court itself to frustrate an investigation or foil a prosecution.

        The thing with RICO is that this is a card that is usually thrown out to EXPAND investigations.

      2. hunkerdown

        Frank Huguenard’s claim to fame apparently follows more from extreme frisbee than from political commentary. ¡Suave!

        Probably pulled because of the misleading headline, of the sort that only real (i.e. oligarch-vetted) editors are allowed to place.

    5. Tom

      Even without Sanders, she’s got a hell of a problem. You saw the debate clip where Trump destroyed Jeb and the neocons over the Iraq war and 9/11, didn’t you? (one of the most thrilling 3 minutes and 19 seconds of video in recent memory).
      Well, Trump has been keeping his powder dry on Hillary, for the most part, although he wisely has slapped the ‘crooked’ label on Hillary weeks ago. So now he’s just sitting back and watching her act exactly like someone who has something to hide.
      Just imagine the field day he will have once he gets going. Her email escapades — a wholly unforced mistake, by the way — present such a target-rich environment that Trump probably thinks he died and went to heaven.

    6. different clue

      Sanders has no obligation to make this any easier on the Beltway-to-Wall Street Acelacrats than they have made it on themselves. If Clinton “wins” the nomination and is then pressured to turn the nomination over to Mr. Plan B, I hope she refuses. Under that scenario, I hope Sanders would refuse to accept the Poisoned-Chalice Brokered Nomination. Let Sanders stay untainted by Mainstream Acelacrat machinations. Let the embittered Clinton supporters take out their rage on Mr. Plan B, whomever that is.

  5. pretzelattack

    re: reich
    <em>Hillary may not possess Bernie Sanders’s indignation about the rigging of our economy and democracy, or be willing to go as far in remedying it, but she’s shown herself a capable and responsible leader.

    i think he forgot the sarcasm emojis. if they can help sell the bible, they can help sell this bullshit. she is not going to remedy the rigging; she is one of the riggers.

  6. apber

    What to do….what to do. It appears that the Obama Administration is boxed in on Clinton. If it doesn’t indict, the blow back will be enormous, especially with the expected FBI leaks. If it does indict, is an immediate pardon issued? If so, even more blow back given the pay-for-play of the Clinton Foundation which qualifies as high treason, punishable with the death penalty. Does Hillary remove herself for health reasons, hoping to wiggle out of prosecution? Or is the evidence just too, too blatant? Note that the “Clinton Cash” documentary is about to be released.

    Grab the popcorn; it will be an interesting summer.

  7. pretzelattack

    oh, clinton won’t go as far to remedy the rigging as sanders. no kidding, mr. reich.

    1. aletheia33

      yesterday mr. reich introduced sanders to an “enormous” (us uncut) rally in oakland (possibly the largest in his campaign to date).

      if sanders wanted him to do that, does that mean he also wanted reich to publish this piece? sanders, realistically not expecting the nomination, seems determined to keep speaking out as long as he can and keep building his revolution of activists within and outside electoral politcs. at the same time, i believe that once (if) the dem party kills his candidacy and nominates hrc, he will sheepdog for them, and has already begun that turn. it is what he has said from the beginning of his campaign that he will do.

      at that point i expect a large number of millennial (and older) activists to give up electoral politics and turn to other paths of political revolution. some of them will trust him enough that he will be able to persuade them that trump is a greater danger to the country’s future than hrc and that they should work and vote for her. a lot will hang on how he frames his argument for hrc. i think he will frame it in strong terms.

      of course, an hrc indictment will complicate this scenario a bit, but the sanders supporters will still divide in some fashion between

      1. aletheia33

        (cont’d) …. will still divide in some fashion between the inside and outside the system paths. we will need both in large numbers if we are to have any hope whatsoever for our children’s future. sanders will continue to lead the reform of the system from inside it, in congress. at the same time, without strong radical activism outside the system, such reform cannot happen.

        1. Antifa

          Sorry, but what’s the point of electing a crook like Hillary to the Oval Office, a person who sees it as just a place to get richer? What purpose is served by electing someone to office who will be investigated, obstructed, impeached, sued, and generally ignored for whatever term she manages to cling to the job?

          I’d much rather see a genuine “circus clown” (Noam Chomsky’s description of Trump) in the Oval Office than someone as genuinely evil and hellbent on foreign conquest as Hillary. I won’t vote for either of them, ever. I consider each of them to be completely disconnected from the realities of working Americans, not even vaguely aware of our lives.

          Lady MacBeth and Napoleon.

          1. Ulysses

            I think calling Trump Napoleon gives Trump too much credit! I agree 1000% with your determination to not vote for either one of them. :)

          2. craazyboy

            The point is – and this is sooo very important – is so Chelsea can win in 2024.

            I think we can all agree that Chelsea is neither hot, nor has anything to say, at least that 99.9% of us would want to listen to. Therefore, for Chelsea to win in 2024, it will take squillions in campaign financing and the Clinton Foundation will need to buy all media outlets, including a hostile takeover of the Fox News Network. Hostile takeovers are generally quite expensive, so the Clinton Dynasty will need to amass a lotta, lotta money to achieve their personal goals.

            ‘Course after you buy all the TV outlets, you can always produce TV shows. Maybe call one of them “Dynasty” or something. Nielson box ratings can be fudged too, and that would keep your ad rates up, providing some nice cash flow for the Clinton Foundation and Chelsea’s kids.

            1. Optimader

              I think all they will need to buy, aside from some congress critters, which are really quite inexpensive, is Diebold or its equivalent.

        2. Patricia

          On Sunday, Bernie responded to Chuck Todd on this question. My daughter, her husband, and I laughed ourselves out of the house, because it is clever:

          “….at the end of the day, whether it’s Secretary Clinton or Bernie Sanders or Donald Trump, anybody else, the way you gain support is through the candidate himself or herself. So my job is to make sure that Trump does not become president. And I will do that. But if Secretary Clinton is the nominee, it is her job to reach out to millions of people and make the case as to why she is going to defend working families and the middle [class], provide health care for all people, take on Wall Street, deal aggressively with climate change. That is the candidate’s job to do.”

          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            He is walking a narrow path.

            To be clear, it’s not ‘Stopping Trump at All Costs.”

            “I am not doing your job – not at the cost.”

            1. Patricia

              It’s a narrow path, and clear. He defines her job for her (his platform, the gall!) and as you say, refuses to do her job for her (no queen hereabout). Moreover, if she won’t campaign believably (she can’t), she can have no expectation of their votes. Thus he’s also refusing to take ownership of his supporters. (OMG, he won’t even keep the peasants in line).

              For an old meritocratic authoritarian like Clinton, it must be enraging.


      2. pretzelattack

        i hope sanders doesn’t play that role. but if he does, I will keep supporting the revolution of activists. no way i’m voting for any more democrats unless they share my values, and the dnc is intent on weeding those people out.

    2. optimader

      Never forget Reich is a reliable Clinton Party member. At the time of his tepid critique of HRC some months back it was merely a set up for his veil of objectivity to later endorse her–with objectivity.

      Old school lesser evil stuff for those that can be bamboozled.

  8. Paper Mac

    Furzy: “A fair illustration of Europe’s migrant problem…fortunately, not like this in the US, as most Muslims are satisfied with their jobs, good schools, communities, and many say they immigrated to get away from Sharia law, etc…maybe in time this will change in the EC.”

    Monthly reminder to stop equating Arabs with Muslims.

    1. notabanker

      I gotta say after watching that, linking to a pro-israeli, islamaphobic think tank piece run by a 26 year old “distinguished” engineer is way below the integrity I expect here. That is pure propaganda.

      1. Paper Mac

        I first saw this stuff on ZH a few months ago and generally the stories were very sketchily sourced, so I have no idea what’s going on in Europe, but it does seem that there’s an increasingly well-organised campaign to stoke the psychosexual anxieties of Europeans, presumably to erode support for taking refugees. It’s a reasonably well chosen target, stereotypes of Muslims, and particularly Arab Muslims, as sexually voracious and deviant have a long history and deep roots in the psyche of those who identify with European Christiandom, or its secular bastard child the EU.

        1. Lexington

          I doubt it has anything to do either with European Christendom or the EU, as the meme that black men as sexual predators who pose a particular threat to white women is deeply embedded in American racism.

  9. Old Hickory

    Re: Sweden’s Migrant Rape Epidemic. To borrow the title from the post about CUNY, Sweden is committing slow-motion suicide. Sad. They are caught between their tradition of openness and goodwill and the reality unfolding before their eyes.

      1. Old Hickory

        No, just did. The author discounts what he views as isolated atrocities. The townspeople referred to in the video might beg to differ.

        1. JTMcPhee

          Ah, yes, “the townspeople.” Yaas, indeed, “the townspeople.”

          But I am just morally sure that there is no kind of factual or moral equivalence between whatever happens in Montgomery and whatever happens in Malmö… Maybe, given the history, the better connection might be between whatever happened and happens in Detroit and Chicago, since a kind of political-economic push-me-pull-you Völkerwanderung was involved there too…

          And how about those economists and their analyses? Some of them, a tiny minority of course, appear to actually make some SENSE! like here: “On the concept of transition.”

            1. JTMcPhee

              Can you spell “racism?” Intolerance is a milder word. “Lynching” is a stronger word. Emmett Till, a 14 year old black, was murdered rather horribly for allegedly whistling at a white Belle.

              In the wide world of human violence, much of which I’ve read in comments here and elsewhere that you justify and condone, America being exceptional and all, that episode is pretty small stuff. In among all the other stuff. Not that any of it matters… nothing will be ever done to turn all or even enough of us away from the Dark Side. Not even the imprisonment of Hillary Clinton, the somehow election of Bernie Sanders, or any of a wide assortment of other nominal reforms and revolutions that earnest, decent people support and contend for…

              Those that care to will continue to try, to do the best that they can, in bad circumstances and bad company (ies), against the flood of badness that just keeps growing.

    1. RabidGandhi

      Lex can probably break this down better than me, but Swedish Crime Prevention Council (BRA°) stats show negligible change in rape incidence from 2005 to 2014. So where is this jump in rape reports? Looks like the number of reported crimes is jumping while the number of actual crimes is staying constant, suggesting more reporting of possible incidents, multiple counting of single incidents, expansion of the definition of rape…

      And that video is like something out of the 1950s “Scare the Suburbans” file.

    2. myshkin

      I’m curious why that piece was linked. It seemed racist and based on prejudicial anecdotal hearsay woven together with statistics.

      The Gatestone Institute by the way is chaired by John Bolton; other members of the board:

      The Viscountess Bearsted
      Baroness Caroline Cox
      Alan Dershowitz
      The Lord Finkelstein OBE
      Jack Fowler
      Robert Immerman
      Lawrence Kadish
      Ingeborg Rennert
      Rebecca Sugar
      Merryl Tisch

      1. Yves Smith Post author

        1. It was sent by a reliable reader.

        2. Attacking the source is ad hominem. Not intellectually valid. We occasionally run links of article from Fox and even (gasp) Breitbart when we think they have merit. So you need to show that the content is inaccurate.

  10. Ed

    “We’ve seen Donald Trump’s type of populism in Africa, it always ends in tears ”

    And the countries in sub-Saharan Africa are models of good governance when populists are not in power?

    One significance of Trump is that the United States has become one of those countries where someone like Trump becomes the best that is on offer.

    1. Jason

      Yes, the establishment is broken and awful. An egotistical conman who shows every sign of perpetuating all the worst aspects of the status quo, and who practically salivates at the thought of wrecking what decency the nation still has left is not an improvement.

      1. James Levy

        No, in my estimation he is no improvement over Obama at all, and may or may not be better when he gets into office than Clinton. He’s the lesser of two evils, but still evil. I’ve been told many times that “I’m not voting for evil again”, which is why some people are straining to try and make it out that Trump isn’t evil. But it’s all unconvincing. Any gander at Trump’s statements on Mexicans, Israeli settlements, the California Drought, Climate Change, or “Energy Independence” will put those claims to rest. People who ridiculed Palin for “Drill baby drill!” are silent on Trump’s latest speech on coal and fracking. Because they don’t want to vote for evil, and they are sure Clinton is evil (they are almost certainly right about that).

        It’s a terrifying no-win situation.

        1. sleepy

          Any gander at Trump’s statements on Mexicans, Israeli settlements, the California Drought, Climate Change, or “Energy Independence” will put those claims to rest.

          Much of the difference between Trump and Clinton/Obama on these issues is rhetorical only. I will admit my visceral dislike of Hillary is greater than my dislike of Trump, and I would take greater pleasure in Hillary losing than in Trump winning, if that makes any sense at all.

          But I wqn’t vote for either one.

          1. nippersmom

            I wouldn’t take any pleasure at all in Trump winning, but I would take great delight in Clinton losing. I have to admit my loathing for her borders on the pathological.

            1. Pat

              I’m similar. I will not be voting for either Trump or Clinton/Biden or probably anyone they put in her place. I would vote for Sanders, but anyone acceptable to the neoliberal cabal who currently own the Democratic Party is not acceptable to me.

              And yes, I will cheer loudly for some time when Clinton is either forced from the race or defeated. Yes, some of it is a visceral dislike of the Clintons, but a great deal of it is also my belief that fraud and corruption on the scale the Clintons practice it should not be rewarded by handing them the levers of power that include destruction of their domestic enemies, raping what little is left of the economy for the majority of Americans AND the ability to provoke war with other countries for the benefit of their pocketbook (and by extension their ‘benefactors).

    2. NeqNeq

      Nice point re: “non-populist” government.

      I would add that (as with any analogical argument) the important question to ask is whether there are any relevant dissimilarities between African countries and the US. The more dissimilarities, the less reasonable it is to accept the conclusion. In this case, I would argue, there are many large dissimilarities and so the conclusion is completely laughable.

    1. JTMcPhee

      I hope a lot of us will read the piece Lex linked above, “Sweden’s rape crisis isn’t what it seems.”

      Once again, human nature (the “othering” and Fear things, inter alia) trumps the uncomfortably nuanced reality. Maybe most Swedes are spared by the fortuities of history and momentum from the worst predations of the Neo Class, are educated and urbane and all, but my guess is that most Swedes know how tenuous is their position, the position of most of us unorganized, dys-organized mopes in the face of the very well orchestrated, self-licking onslaught of the Parasite Class.

      1. aletheia33

        in the american south for a century (at least) after emancipation (and not counting before it) there was far more rape by white men of african american women and girls than vice versa. those in power and desperate to stay there project their own abuses onto those they have subjected. and in and of itself, rape of subordinate males’ wives, mothers, and children is a weapon dominant groups wield to reinforce their dominance. because it works. (until it doesn’t.) let us not forget that soldiers always rape the enemy’s wives, mothers, and daughters. i’d like to see the statistics on swedes raping immigrant women and girls. but no reliable statistics on that will become available.

      2. Take the Fork

        Multiply by 100 and get back to me about “uncomfortably nuanced reality”

        1. tony

          Rotherham case was not in Sweden and those were not recent migrants, but rather members of the established Pakistani community.

          1. Take the Fork

            Rotherham was a case of Europeans, acting out of a sense of irrational political correctness, ignoring, downplaying and/or denying the crimes of non-Europeans against Europeans. And getting caught out.

            This is what happened in Cologne. This, in my view, is what is happening in Sweden.

            Whenever progressive leftists let ideological correctness override evident reality, they serve as both handmaidens of neoliberalism and enablers of nationalist elements across the continent.

            And just so we are clear: I do mean European in a racial, ethnic and cultural sense.

  11. Zephyrum

    What breed is Pies, an English shepherd? Head seems a bit angular for an Aussie.

    1. polecat

      Looks like a Munsterlander (Greater or Lesser I cannot discern) ……We adopted a male adult from the SPCA some years ago …… a really fortunate choice…. was a kind and loving soul….died 12 yrs ago…..still miss him !

    2. Stephen Liss

      Border collie. According to his papers from the Canadian Border Collie Association. We live near Seattle now. I just noticed your question, doh!

  12. Alex V

    In regard to Gatestone Institute link, that should be taken with a grain of salt. They have a distinctly Islamophobic bent. This is not to say that Sweden does not have issues regarding immigration and integration, but as a current resident, I’m pretty confident in saying the situation is nowhere near as bad as implied. In regard to the rape statistics, for example, part of the issue is how this is defined. Swedish statistics have a broader definition than many countries, and the rate of reporting is higher, as confidence in the authorities is also higher.

  13. RabidGandhi

    W/r/t Reich: Told you so.

    February 27, 2016 at 10:39 am
    Whatever. I appreciate him doing the right thing and showing how Sanders is better than HRC. But given his neoliberal apologia… I don’t want him anywhere near public power.

    And just watch, if HRC gets the nomination, he’ll be first in line helping her by doing oppo against the Repub candidate.

    1. diptherio

      Ditto. The desire to forgive those who one sees as legitimate “authorities” is strong in most people. It’s a characteristic of the authoritarian personality type, but one that exists in all people to one extent or another. The rush by some lefty types to continue to fawn over people who have failed us so often in the past, whenever they talk sense for a few minutes, is really disappointing. We aren’t any better than the fundamentalist Christians who defend their sex-offender ministers (“’cause we’re all sinners”). It’s the same mentality, and failing to admit that just means that you’ll continue doing it.

      The result is that people are allowed to remain influential (People like Reich and Krugman) regardless of how many times they stab us in the back, when they should, by all rights, be objects of ridicule or simply ignored. The authoritarian mind-set is strong in the Democrat party, just as in the Republican party. It’s not an unknown presence around these parts either…

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef


        The People have the means and the authority to spend money into existence to save the economy.

        Look within, not without.

      2. Left in Wisconsin

        Mostly agree. Except I don’t think people like Reich and Krugman remain influential, if they do, because of any attention we pay to them. I think they are a product of the progressive meritocracy where influence is earned by ensuring that “challenges” to the status quo remain just that. To the extent they actually tried to challenge the status quo, I think they would rapidly lose influence.

        Reich (unlike Krugman) has tried very hard over the last decade to re-establish his bona fides with the left. Now with a single blog post, he has blown it/shown his true colors. I guess that law school crush on HRC isn’t entirely in the past.

  14. Garrett Pace

    Emoji Bible

    Reminds me of a conversation last week. I was on a plane sitting next to an Indian fellow and talking about religion. I asked him if the Bhagavad Gita was worth reading and he told me that I needed a guide – I might get something out of reading it myself, but I’d be much better off spending time in an Ashram learning from someone who knows.

    1. Jim Haygood

      Somehow it never occurs to the bible updaters to do some desperately needed editing, such as relegating turgid boilerplate like this to footnotes or endnotes:

      Adam … begat Seth … and Seth … begat Enos … and Enos … begat Cainan … and Cainan … begat Mahalaleel … and Mahalaleel … begat Jared … and Jared … begat Enoch … and Enoch … begat Methuselah …

      But one of the rules of holy books is that those who tamper with them will be struck down by an angry deity. So religions soldier on with their medieval dogs’ breakfasts of wildly disparate material.

      Using the 80/20 principle, the christian bible could be condensed to at least a semi-coherent narrative flow using the best fifth (meaning most of the grossly violent O.T., with its psychotic deity and obsessive-compulsive by-laws, would have to go). The excised four fifths could molder on dusty library shelves as appendices, or warm homes in winter when the wood supply runs low.

      It’s an obvious makeover that would do wonders for evangelizing, since the average reader can’t make head nor tail of antiquated, opaque scriptures, and soon loses interest. But I can’t be arsed to do it. The underlying material is just too hokey and erratic.

      1. optimader

        begat Enos … and Enos
        Brian Eno’s great, great, geat, great…grand whaeva whaeva..

      2. nippersdad

        I’m not sure how well it would do for evangelizing. I once worked with a literacy program and, this being the South, many of the students learned far better if one used the Bible as text. For everything. The childrens’ Bibles and adult modern versions went over pretty well, but as they weren’t actually “the Word Of God” nothing worked so well as the King James version.

        If it doesn’t have the begats, etc., it isn’t really the Bible. Judging from that experience and others like it, whether one can actually comprehend what it says is just irrelevant from the perspective of those inclined to evangelistic Christianity. Rather like the Latin service, the opacity only makes “The Word”, for some people, more powerful.

      3. JustAnObserver

        But Jim without all those begats it would be impossible to calculate that the world began in 4000 BCE, 9am on a Thursday morning IIRC …

      4. hunkerdown

        You’d be fundamentally changing the character and the value structure of the religion. For example, the sort that believes that OT stuff generally considers racial purity, rationalized killing on a whim, inheritance, and group narcissism as fundamental bedrock aspects of a functional society, i.e. one that serves their personal and group interests without fail. Edit out such psychosis, and you’ve pulled the temple down, as it were, on the philosophical underpinnings of no fewer than two grossly influential branches of world religion. That’s a bold move, good fellow.

  15. Musty smell

    Party apparatchik Reich leaps into action parroting the latest indoctrination slogans: adult, responsible, etc. It works, for dimbulbs with no critical thinking skills. But there’s an easier way to boil down Hillary’s CV: Everything she touches turns to shit.

  16. Brindle

    re: Venezuela Pro-Govt Supporters Being Killed…

    I am sure Kissinger fan-girl Samantha Power is smiling. Wouldn’t be surprised if U.S. intel involved at some level—it’s been SOP in Central & S. America for many decades.

    1. carlos

      About 30,000 people are murdered in Venezuela each year mostly crime and “ajuste de cuentas” among gangs. All the ones reported by TeleSUR (own by the Venezuelan government) were crime related. You will not see TeleSUR reporting on these murders:
      During a political rally:
      “A regional opposition leader in Venezuela has been shot dead at a campaign rally less than two weeks before parliamentary elections.
      The Democratic Action party says Luis Manuel Diaz was killed by a man who approached the stage after a public meeting in central Guarico state.
      Opposition leaders blamed militias supporting the governing United Socialist Party of Venezuela (PSUV).”
      “Venezuelan politician German Mavare, leader of the opposition UNT party, died Friday after being shot in the head, an assassination that occurred in the western state of Lara, his organization said.

      “The board of the UNT expresses its deepest sorrow for the slaying of colleague German Mavare. We demand justice and an end to violence,” was the message posted on the Twitter account of the UNT party, headed by jailed ex-presidential candidate and former governor of Zulia state, Manuel Rosales.”

      “Daniel Tinoco was shot in the chest at a road junction during a demonstration in San Cristobal, the city’s police chief Angel Perdomo said.
      Eyewitnesses said Mr Tinoco and other students were attacked by armed men riding motorcycles.
      At least 22 people have been killed since the unrest in Venezuela started more than a month ago.”

      A little bit of due diligence goes a long way

      1. hunkerdown

        My take on Venezuelan politics is that any neoliberal or Yanqui provocateur in the country are traitors against the people and should be immediately and summarily put to the wall, and the bourgies who whine can be next.

  17. diptherio

    Report from Mortgage Land: Loan Underwriters Still Not Doing Their Jobs

    The first comment I ever made here was a rant about how, years after the financial crisis, a friend who was house shopping had Wells Fargo approve her and her hubby for a loan amount whose monthly payment was 80% of their stated take-home income!

    Well, I saw the same friend just yesterday and they just bought a new house to move closer to the kids’ school. They shopped around at a couple of local banks and were approved, again, for loan amounts they obviously couldn’t afford. This time about 70% of their monthly income. When she expressed disbelief to one banker, he replied that it was “your responsibility to decide whether or not you can afford it”[!] Her real estate agent told her that they were one of the few clients she had who “shopped within their means.” She’s apparently sold a number of $1M+ homes (in Montana) to people who ended up losing a job 6 months later and becoming (literally) homeless in very short order. So underwriting apparently just isn’t a thing anymore.

    And this was at local, independent banks, not one of the usual criminals. What’s going on here? Obviously the local banks must be selling those loans on to someone else, since no one would want to sit on those things. And obviously, applying underwriting standards is now the responsibility of the borrower…


    1. fresno dan

      Well, if you are homo economicous, it is perfectly rational and expected behavior.
      How many bankers, financiers, loan officers, et al were investigated? How many prosecuted? How many convicted? And I’m talking higher ups. If the Nurenburg trials were held by our DoJ these days, nobody above the rank of corporal would be convicted of anything….
      Higher ups are making these decisions, and I think rationally (not morally) that the benefit to them for originating and approving loans, and the bigger the loan the better, far, far, far exceeds the risk. I don’t think bankers are susceptible to a “Great Awakening”

      You gotta ask yourself this: Is Dodd-Frank INTENDED to be effective??? (and its a two stage process – if by some miracle a phrase in the law can be enforced, rest assured that our prosecutors won’t enforce it…)

      1. diptherio

        I’d say it’s prima facie evidence of accounting control fraud. I mean, I’d expect it from Wells or JPM, but from a small local bank….the rot has progressed far beyond the fish-heads, methinks….

        1. bob

          Banking is like a kids soccer game.

          They move in a pack, never get too far away from one another, or the shiny new ball that everyone is chasing.

        2. craazyboy

          After the GFC, we found out there a lots of banks and “mortgage loan companies” that were acting as “loan mills”. They would be canvassed by the big Wall Street securitizers for any and crap they would write, the securitizes would bundle up the loans, send the bundle to S&P for the coveted AAA rating, along with all the backing loan approval paperwork. Then, with check in hand for S&P service fee, they would negotiate how much the bundle should be “padded” with a loss allowance for bad loans and then qualify for the AAA rating. They were using historical mortgage data which indicated foreclosure rates around 2%. Wonder if they’ve updated that rate???

          Then I’ve read that after the sausage gets made and declared AAA Kosher, none of these details are made available to even the most demanding, energetic and fastidious bond fund manager, just in case anyone may want to double check the work.

    2. craazyboy

      Every now and then I wonder if it’s safe to get into a MBS bond fund again – and be rewarded with a decadently scrumptious 3% return and live like a [very] minor king again. Or at least afford going out to eat now and then. I guess not.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Bigger Short.

        The last time, it was The Big Short.

        According to the film, which I recently watched, you need a trader friend who can get you a something (forget the term) to set up trades with the Big Boys.

        Hopefully, your counter party (or parties) will still be bailed out this time, so you can collect your credit default swaps, and retire to your chosen tropical island.

        I believe it will be the easiest 100-bagger you will ever make.

        But I am not an investment adviser and you could lose everything, for this is just my attempt at fiction writing.

        But I do wonder, how many are setting up their bigger shorts now?

        1. craazyboy

          Prolly none. Tim Geithner assured us that’d they’d fix things so the GFC could never happen again.

          “you need a trader friend who can get you a something (forget the term) to set up trades with the Big Boys.”

          Tim Geithner’s email address might be the “something”????

    1. Lumpenproletariat

      Ding ding ding

      NC and its commenters get domestic political economy consistently right.

      Yet its international links and their respective commentators often strangely echo the prevailing mainstream monetarist/corporatist/imperialist/militarist lines. Unfortunately NC also attracts some xenophobes too.

      The brouhaha over Europe’s migrant crisis sounds a lot like Trump bloviating about Mexican rapists and the need for an all protecting wall. Those minorities are the most hyper exploited and the most easily scapegoated. Yet this empirical fact is ignored, by people who aren’t logically consistent.

      The likes of the Gatestone Institute should not be taken seriously. Then again mainstream reporting on political economy and foreign lands consistently skews to one side–It is good if you are fan of the economic counter-reformation.

      1. wdj

        Big Red light regarding Gatestone institute. You all need to read its masthead to see what’s up. On the first page is an article about how wrong Bernie Sanders was about “disproportionality” in response to Palestinians in the last Gaza war. Then I saw that Alan Dershowitz is on the Board. So beware of this sites and its links!

      2. Roger Smith

        This fits with my personal observations as well. The few times I have seen anti-migration talk have been from pro-Trump people.

      3. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Unwelcome migrants.

        The Yan-qi warrior-migrants are not particularly constructive for the countries they migrate to.

        A lot of the natives in those lands have turned xenophobic.

    2. JustAnObserver

      Thanks for reminding me. I followed a link to Gatestone some time ago (not sure where from – NC or somewhere else), naively read the article, then went and had a look at the front page (NC info source survival training comes in useful) and the stench of neolib/neocon orthodoxy & scare mongering was very strong.

      Resolved to avoid. Do we need a new TLA for this – RTA?

    1. shinola

      Interesting article – thanks flora.

      Even the IMF’s own economists are beginning to question neoliberalism.

  18. Alex morfesis

    Worse than snowden…$hillary narative and talking point on email buffoonery has to be made simpler…if what snowden did was bad (& some of it was), what her ignorance and incompetence was is worse…

    much worse…

    Actually…what is worse is she does not even have sycophants smart enough to have called it a honeypot operation…
    Seriously opens the question as to her capacity to mislead the nation as empress dowager….

    1. optimader

      Well there is the well worn corporate strategy of promoting incompetence up based on a combination of charismatic ruthlessness.
      Well one out of two I guess is good enough for the DNC

  19. RabidGandhi

    Thanks for linking to the 2 Independent Syraqistan articles. Having Cockburn and Fisk on the same staff is like having Messi and Neymar at forward (or Johnson and Schilling for you Yanks). The sad part is that with the Independent and other outlets shedding bureaus, it’s a 1-2 punch unlikely to be repeated in the future.

    1. Lumpenproletariat

      Louis Proyect doesn’t seem to like them. Sounds crazy, but a committed, intelligent and noncommercial opted leftist is incensed about Russia and Assad than he is about the much more aggressive and damaging US corporatist/imperialist one.

    1. fresno dan

      love the HRC unit!!!
      maybe we should change “Millions for defense, not one penny for tribute” to:
      Millions to HRC, not one penny to the 99%

      1. craazyboy

        I suggested a while back that the Fed put Hillary on a new $250,000 bill. But I was just kidding.

        1. fresno dan

          Instead of a trillion dollar coin, a trillion dollar bill – anything less esteemed duo is an insult…

          1. polecat

            …would it be referred to as a ‘clinton’……..??

            soooo big you can’t even fit the damn thing in your wallet……

  20. Anne

    I guess I just don’t get it. Or maybe I used to get it, and now I just can’t. Or won’t.

    My message/response to Reich is to stop trying to shame or guilt people into giving up and accepting the inevitability of a Clinton nomination. To stop taking the onus for poor performance off a bad candidate – Clinton – and putting it onto people who want to end the stranglehold of business-as-usual politics. You don’t change things by accepting more of the same – you change things by rejecting what isn’t working and replacing it with something that does. If Clinton is the nominee and I don’t vote for her, that is not a vote for Donald Trump, that is a vote that no one is getting. It’s my vote – quit trying to make my vote make up for a candidate whom a majority of people don’t like and don’t trust.

    Stop telling me to do what’s good for the Democratic Party – I think rejecting Clinton and her cronies IS what’s good for the Democratic Party. Does he not get that?

    Oh, but…Trump. This cycle’s bogeyman that establishment Democrats are using to maintain their own hold on power. Yes, please keep scaring us about Trump and ignoring the steamer trunks of scandal and corruption and rot that Ms. Clinton is carrying around with her.

    Really, Mr. Reich, what’s the point of all your pro-Bernie posts if, in the end, you’re just going to climb over his body so you can vote for Clinton?

    1. petal

      Unity! He tried to rope in all the Sanders supporters by appearing sympathetic for a while, now he thinks he can convince all of them to shift themselves to HC. Where might he be without his stint as SoL in Bill’s administration? Plus, he’s known them since Yale. Back into the fold! Please forgive my cynicism.

    2. grayslady

      Ditto to remarks made by Noam Chomsky to vote for Hillary if you live in a swing state. No person seriously supporting Bernie’s agenda can ask even a modestly sentient being to vote for Hillary. Time to demand that all politicians provide us reason to vote for them, not against the opponent.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        Even with Chomsky, the idea about asking Sanders voters to selectively vote misses the point. The economy is much larger than the scope of the “BernieBros.” When you have to plead with activists types to vote selectively, you’ve already lost. Parties need the activist to stand in the Summer heat registering voters, to ask if that kid will be 18 by election day (as creepy as it sounds), to find shut ins, to track down snow birds, to hound renters, and so forth.

        Hillary did well with black voters who already voted for her in 2008 and likely her husband who despite being hailed as the “first black President” never actually saw a high black turnout. Is David Brock going to register lower class minorities? The answer is no.

        The people who sometimes watch the evening news aren’t going to vote for a candidate because she tells them “America is already great” when they can’t make ends meet.

        1. cwaltz

          Any self respecting activist ought to ask themselves why they are voting for the Democrat party when their leadeship explained to you early on that the reason they have the system they have(superdelegates) is so they can ignore you when it is convenient for them.

          1. aletheia33

            good point. please give the kids who love bernie a break on this though. they are proto-activists so far. they are losing their innocence as they go. many of them are presently in shock about realities of politics, not just the new twists but the perennial stuff. one thing they seem very strong on, though, is they will not be ignored.

      2. katiebird

        I don’t want to hear the term Swing State again. If my vote doesn’t count (and since I live in Kansas, it doesn’t) then just cancel the election here.

        What’s the point of holding an election if the winner is predetermined?

    3. katiebird

      Another vote for Just Don’t Get It.

      My Question for Mr. Reich is: “Do you think Hillary is correct in laughing off the current investigations into her Email Tar Baby?”

      The way I see it, the investigations are either very serious, or they are a joke. If they are a joke, then he should say so and tell us why and how. If they are serious, then (since they cannot possibly be happily resolved before the Democrat’s Convention) a reasonable person cannot support her.

      At this point anyone requiring my vote for Hillary MUST address the Email Tar Baby.

      PS. I can’t vote for her.

      1. different clue

        At the risk of sounding broken-recordy, I will again say that I don’t know “how serious” the Establishment really considers the Clinton email thingie. I know they don’t want to find out till after Clinton has been safely nominated and Sanders safely disposed of. If the email thingie turns out to be too serious to ignore, or even tolerate; the Establishment hopes to be able to strip the safely nominated Clinton of the nomination and give it to some Establishment Acelacrat Mr. Plan B. The main goal of keeping Sanders un-nominated will have been achieved.

        Does anyone remember Mr. Omalley of Baltimore? He reminded me of a TV show I once watched about professional boxing and the management of a “rising boxer’s” career. At certain points a very beatable opponent is chosen for the rising young boxer. That opponent is referred to in the boxing bussiness as a “tomato can”. Omalley was supposed to be Clinton’s “tomato can”. If Clinton is forced to relinquish the nomination, and if the Acelacrats have a sense of humor, they will offer the nomination to Mister Tomato Can ( O’malley).

    4. Brindle

      Well said: “Really, Mr. Reich, what’s the point of all your pro-Bernie posts if, in the end, you’re just going to climb over his body so you can vote for Clinton?”

      Get the feeling Reich gets along just fine with Joan Walsh, Paul Begala etc. at the cocktail parties.

    5. optimader

      you read too much integrity into RReich..
      All premeditated kayfabe
      …Veil of objectivity

    6. nippersmom

      Well stated.

      Reich is rapidly losing his credibility. He is reverting back to the corporate cog he was before he adopted the veneer of genuine liberalism. I’m rather ashamed I was taken in by the pose.

      1. Lumpenproletariat

        Reich was vetted by the establishment. TPTB know he will ultimately be loyal to them. Thus his self-serving and now-unraveling media exposure was funded by…. the same beige corporatist sociopaths.

        If Reich were sincere to his progressive economics, he would be roundly ignored*

        *think of Steve Keen, Michael Hudson, etc.

        1. nippersdad

          The exception being Stiglitz. I don’t know how he squares doing the media rounds declaiming against the TPP and can still lend his name (and reputation) to Clinton’s economic policy wonk list. Or maybe he is just playing on a different level/eleventh dimension than Reich to the same ends?

  21. carlos


    “Does Venezuela’s Crisis Prove Socialism Doesn’t Work? Counterpunch (Sid S). An in-depth explanation of what went wrong from a long-term resident.”
    That is a piece of propaganda. The author fails to mention that corruption runs rampant in the government (now and during Chaves). He also fails to mention that this so called “marxist” have all become multi-millionaires due to corruption. He also fails to mention that the convoluted exchange system is a feature not a bug. The “preferential” exchange has been used reward regimen supporters in the tune of billions during these 16 years.
    To actually say that “Socialism” is a form of government in Venezuela should be offensive to all socialists out there. Venezuela is a populist corrupt government nothing more nothing less.

    Also, just for the sake of disclosure is worth mentioning that TeleSUR is funded and control by the Venezuelan government and it is as impartial as Pravda used to be during the USSR period
    Venezuela: Pro-Govt Supporters Being Killed in Record Numbers teleSUR (martha r)

  22. Eureka Springs


    G. Sachs Alum. ?
    Secretary of NAFTA Labor.
    Damning Sanders with feint praise?
    Looking for a seat at either table?

    1. polecat

      look on his left arm for…’sucker marks’… they’re a telltale sign of the ‘squid’..

  23. Steve in Flyover

    The longer Hildebeast can kick the e-mail/server can down the road, the better off she is. Sewing up the nomination is Job #1.

    At that point, she will have defacto immunity from prosecution, because any indictments at that point hand the Election to Trump, aka Death to America as we know it. Many will say “she really sucks, but she sucks less than Trump”.

    Sanders, being the only candidate from either party who passed the honestly test, should be running unopposed. The fact that the contest is going to be between two unindicted crooks tells us everything we need to know about why things suck.

  24. nippersdad

    Again, problems doing links, but anyone up for a laugh needs to Google OFA Meet President Obama this summer. He is apparently trying to crowdsource his legacy!

    All he needs is better propaganda!

    1. Roger Smith

      My favorite part was when he bombed all the brown people and then kicked a bunch of brown kids out too. You don’t have to go home, but get your ass out of here, that’s what I always say. I also like when he plays basketball.

      How much tax money is spent vetting people who actually apply?

        1. nippersdad

          Obama for America, O’s campaign arm in ’07, morphed into Organizing for Action once he was elected; it is the remains of the campaign that has his e-mail and activist database.

            1. nippersdad

              True. Telling them that they should be the change they seek was problematic for those who didn’t want the competition. I doubt that the Sanders version would be so easily deep sixed.

  25. rich

    Goldman Sachs Financed Hillary Clinton’s Son-in-Law to Make Bullish Greek Bets After It Structured Unseemly Greek Debt Deals that Hobbled that Country

    The vampire squid has now popped up in the middle of a potential new scandal involving the Clintons, while uproar over its payment of $675,000 to Hillary Clinton personally for three speeches is still simmering.

    On May 10, the New York Times gently dropped a bombshell on the hedge fund investing world of New York’s one-percenters. Hillary and Bill Clinton’s son-in-law, Marc Mezvinsky, who married their only child, Chelsea, in an opulent 2010 wedding, was shuttering the Eaglevale Hellenic Opportunity Fund after it had lost 90 percent of its value. That is a staggering loss for a hedge fund, which is, as its name implies, supposed to have hedges in place to prevent that kind of loss.
    The fund with the steep losses is part of a larger hedge fund firm run by Mezvinsky and two former colleagues at Goldman Sachs, Bennett Grau and Mark Mallon. The idea that a hedge fund should wait until it had only 10 percent of its clients’ assets remaining before shutting down is causing angst in billionaire circles, as are many other details surrounding this hedge fund.

    According to a 2015 article in the Wall Street Journal, the same fund had already lost 48 percent in 2014 – raising the question as to why it wasn’t shuttered then, when clients could have gotten a sizeable amount of their principal returned.

    Grau’s former tenure at Goldman Sachs spans 30 years, from 1981 to 2011 – a period during which he worked with Goldman’s now Chairman and CEO, Lloyd Blankfein, who started his career in the same trading area as Grau, the J. Aron & Co. subsidiary that Goldman bought in 1981.

    According to the account in the New York Times, the Eaglevale Hellenic Opportunity Fund imploded as a result of bullish bets on Greek bank stocks and Greek government debt. That’s raising even more eyebrows in investment circles since it was Goldman Sachs who secretly sold a complex and convoluted derivative deal to Greece in 2001 that hid the true state of its debt, then reworked the deal multiple times until Greece ended up owing Goldman a stunning 5.1 billion euros, almost twice Greece’s original obligation, thus making future bullish bets on Greece highly doubtful.

    According to a Bloomberg News report, it was Blankfein’s division of Goldman Sachs that structured the derivatives deal with Greece. Our research shows Grau worked in that division at the time.
    The Securities and Exchange Commission actually lists two Eaglevale Hellenic funds, one onshore and one offshore.
    We raise the plundering by the physical commodity empires of the Wall Street mega banks because Greece has an estimated $200 billion in mineral reserves, with concentrations of nickel, bauxite and gold, according to the Institute for Geology and Mineral Exploration. As the Greek debt crisis continues, the privatization of these resources will continue apace with Wall Street banks no doubt positioning themselves for the spoils.

    distract, contract, extract…winning! privatization for them, austerity for the people…they’re with her!!

    1. Alex morfesis

      Lord Blanketfayle is only following the prime directive at goulman extracts…leave no asset unstripped…and the greeks have not used the minerals these last 2 million sunsets…they wont miss them….

  26. jawbone

    Trump Supports Cutting Social Security From A ‘Moral Standpoint:’ Report
    The presumptive GOP presidential nominee has been saying the opposite on the campaign trail.

    Well, either HuffPo is making a lot out of some inside the Beltway gossip OR beginning a rumor campaign of its own against Trump OR Trump is being manipulated by the Repub elites to actually change his mind about his SocSec stands (as undefiled as they may be) and will do the dirty deed that Obama has failed to do for the Corporatists? Oh, OR he’s been lying to the voters all along.

    1. James Levy

      With Trump, it’s probably a different thing every day. If we thought we had “listen to his gut’ when Dubya was president, we ain’t seen nothin’ yet! Trump has said he’s going to cut taxes, surrender the national debt, keep the most powerful military on the planet, and spend a fortune on infrastructure and his wall. This has all the credibility of Reagan’s pledge to cut taxes, increase military spending, and balance the budget, only perhaps even more grandiose and unattainable. When he gets in (and it’s probably 60-40 that he will) there will be hell to pay.

  27. rich

    Utah Apartment Building Changes Lease, Forcing Tenants to “Like” the Company on Facebook

    I always love it when a sleazy, authoritarian plan backfires spectacularly.

    The following story from CNET is simply mind-boggling:

    As KSL-TV reports, residents of an apartment building in Salt Lake City, Utah, say they found a curious piece of paper stuck to their doors.

    Headlined “Facebook Addendum,” it had fascinating stipulations.

    It insisted that tenants had five days to “friend” the City Park Apartments on Facebook or they’d be in breach of their lease. The fact that they’d already signed their lease perhaps months previously didn’t seem to matter to the owners.

    Oh, and then there was the part about releasing the building owners to post pictures of the tenants or their visitors to, yes, the building’s Facebook page.

    You will also be traumatized into delirium when I tell you that another stipulation was that the tenants don’t post anything negative on social media. This seems a strangely unbalanced “friendship.”

    One tenant, Jason Ring, told KSL: “I don’t want to be forced to be someone’s friend and be threatened to break my lease because of that.”

    Read more of this post

  28. Blurtman

    I am a bit surprised to see Rawstory links on this site. In my experience, Rawstory engages in the censorship of viewpoints that are contrary to its liberal bias.

  29. Antifa

    Madame Secretary

    When your goose is cooked,
    And the bed’s been shat,
    When you’ve screwed the pooch,
    And shaved the cat,

    When the barn door’s broke,
    And your mules are gone,
    And the High Sheriff
    Is comin’ on,

    When the lies you sell
    Are tired out tricks,
    When you just ain’t got
    No pancake mix

    When it’s sink or swim
    With no help in sight
    When the sharks come close
    And begin to bite,

    Blame only yourself
    As you disappear,
    And forgive this whole world
    If we stand up and cheer.

    ~ Antifa

    1. nippersdad

      That is really good! You should post that to a Sanders page on Fborg; see how fast it goes viral.

      1. Antifa

        Thanks, but let’s just let the Publick have it; if it speaks for them, they’ll share it. Those links will reference Naked Capitalism, and any credit can go to Yves and Lambert for providing such a superb salon for intelligent conversation.

  30. reslez

    Re: Erdogan Says “Contraception is Treason, Women Not Equal to Men, Muslims Must Multiply Descendants “ Michael Shedloc

    Briefly crawled through Mish’s comment section. Full of white males assuring everyone that women are not equal to men and white Europeans must multiply descendants. Doing their best to minimize the differences, I suppose.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      More shocking than North Carolina.

      I hope all our corporations get out of there.

    2. Plenue

      I was just about to say something about that. What a cesspool. Someone even linked to a Stefan Molyneux video for crying out loud.

      This gem is my favorite:

      “If you are a man of Northern European descent between 25 and 32 you may wish to redefine your life.

      Consider marrying a woman in the 19-22 age bracket, living on a single income (yours), and having 3+ children. Choose to live debt free, and plan on buying real estate during the next crash that can be used to generate income. Learn a trade skill, homeschool your children in electronics, robotics, math, and western history and philosophy.

      Note of all these, the wife selection is the hardest part. Most young women these days are so narcissistic, hedonistic, and have no conception of a world greater than themselves.

      Fortunately, as a man, you can provide a plan, purpose, and direction. Women like these very much. Your starting point will be your personal development.”

      Somehow I don’t think this guy actually knows the first thing about personal development.

        1. Plenue

          There is this fascinating dynamic of angry men on the internet who, not being able to get dates/laid, spend a lot of time raging about how women only go for assholes. Yet the more they rant, the more it becomes clear that they are themselves massive assholes, not the perpetually ‘finishing in last place’ nice guys they seem to imagine they are.

    3. different clue

      The long term result of Erdoganist pro-natalism would be every-greater population pressure in countries which adopt it to migrate to countries which have controlled their own population growth.

      The only way population growth-restrained countries could survive such demographic aggression would be to ban immigration from countries with birth rates greater than their own birth rates. And no, I am not being sarcastic or satirical.

      Given Erdogan’s support for ISIS and for the Alphabet jihadis in Syria, perhaps Europe should dissolve NATO and create their own Mutual Defense Organization to be called NEATO. That stands for North East Atlantic Treaty Organization. Without America. Without Canada. And withOUT Turkey. And then build a Beautiful Wall along every Border which Turkey can reach. Force the Turko-natalists to deal with the fallout from their own Population Breeder Reactor.

  31. Lumpenproletariat

    The Washington Post article on the empty Chinese Silk Road city has to be one of the worst. Many of the comments were predictably xenophobic and economically misinformed as well.

    China has a zillion problems; class based economic exploitation and environmental destruction, insufficient taxation and unearned wealth from urban land capital gains, insufficient social safety net. These issues are more or less known and debated in Chinese media.

    Yet the Wapo and many other media outlets here harp on ghost cities. The problem is laughable to people with any real understanding of the place. Lanzhou is an overcrowded and rapidly growing mess. The new city next to it is not finished. The roads and subway connections between Lanzhou and the new city have not been completed. Kind of puts the “ghost” aspect into perspective. From what I see, there is still a shortage of housing and infrastructure in every urban area.

    Then we get the Monetarists and their debt scare tactics. Why build housing and infrastructure (for an expanding urban population) when paying off creditors should be the priority? FDR was wrong. Instead of building highways and the Tennessee Valley Authority, debts should have been paid down.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Lanzhou is key to Han Chinese military domination of their western provinces.

      Well worth it to invest in a new city.

      1. Lumpenproletariat

        How does your logic explain the proliferation of new cities in non strategic, ethnically homogenous areas?

        Going by the logic of the WAPO, one would associate infrastructure and housing investment as doomed to failure. Kind of explains the disdain for inevitably wasteful and unprofitable HSR in the US.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          WaPo and others harp on ghost cities.

          Is Lanzhou a special case, or can we explain unoccupied ghost cities by Lanzhou?

          Perhaps the new city near Lanzhou will be occupied, unlike other ghost cities that remain unoccupied. That makes it a special case.

          I gave another reason for its uniqueness – military importance – and perhaps that is why it’s a special case and the reason can’t explain other ghost cities. (And thus, it can’t explain other ethnic homogenous areas.)

          If so, Lanzhou’s new city does not refute WaPo’s harping on (other) ghost cities. And maybe WaPo is harping too much and wrong, but that has yet to be shown here.

          1. Lumpenproletariat

            How many unoccupied cities can you name? Just how familiar are you with the subject at hand? New Ordos was the big deal a few years ago. Strangely enough the media pays less attention now. *Hint hint* It is slowly filling up.

            Yujiapu in Tianjin and Zhengzhou East are currently cited as ghost cities by the likes of NBC news and 60 Minutes. You’d probably believe it. *Hint hint* Their infrastructure is incomplete. Plus if you have been to old Tianjin or Zhengzhou, you would see why urban planners see the need for extra housing and infrastructure. Go further back and Pudong, Guangzhou Tianhe and Shenzhen were ridiculed as Potemkin villages. Hell, from a Monetarist or even a neo Cold War perspective, the HSR network and even the Shanghai/Guangzhou/etc. subways are just uneconomic, unnecessary follies.

            You may still accept the WAPO’s contention, but you sure don’t make a convincing argument. BTW the military argument is pretty damn stupid–Almost like Monetarists saying the US Interstate program is only justified because of its military potential.

    2. NeqNeq

      The ghost city meme has been debunked so many times and yet it gets trotted out every few months by some nitwit or other.

      I guess they run out of new material to feed the China Economy Panic that has been a staple over the last decade or so. Here is always an article/post somewhere doing the Hard Landing chicken little dance.

  32. TheCatSaid

    Re “The Source of Failure: We Optimize What We Measure” The article gives excellent clear examples, but gets a fail for the final solution where it proposes metrics for well-being, etc. It offers no solutions or even ideas or references.

    Something I’ve found intriguing about Integral Accounting is its way of looking at a broader range of things. (And applying it, avoiding the tendency to monetize things, can get quite creative and exhilarating.)

  33. Skippy

    I wonder if Hillary would support Sanders we she to lose, be diminished or detained…

    Disheveled Marsupial…. facial gestures and reflex cackle might just go quantum….

  34. docg

    Re Foxconn and robots.

    So long as the means of production are in private hands, jobs will continue to be lost to technology and, ultimately, as the consumer base is increasingly impoverished, the economy will collapse. This is the topic of a blog post I wrote some time ago, but seems even more relevant today.

    The solution?

    “. . . instead of taking jobs from workers, the technology should exist to make their lives better. In the form of: shorter working hours, higher pay, more pleasant and challenging types of work, more leisure time to be with family, pursue the arts, hobbies, do research, express oneself, etc. Is this a Utopian dream? Is it (God forbid!) socialism? At one time it might have seemed that way. But at this particular time in history it looks more and more like our only hope.”

  35. wat

    I heard Bill Kristol referred to as an “independent analyst” on NPR today. I couldn’t decide whether to giggle maniacally or throw up, so I did both and chunk snarfed.

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