2:00PM Water Cooler 6/3/2016

By Lambert Strether of Corrente.

Readers, today’s Water Cooler is a little bit visual, but all these charts just happened at once!



“Did Hillary Clinton Really Restore America’s Reputation in the World?” [Bloomberg]. Betteridge’s Law: “International public sentiment about the U.S. did not improve when Clinton was in charge of State, an aggregate of polls shows.” And the Iran deal, which I think is a real achievement by Obama, only took place after Kerry took over.


A map of Clinton/Trump money, definitely coastal (and Texan):

A map of Sanders money, definitely not coastal (or Texan):

The Voters

“Ultimately, after Hillary lost to Obama, those who voted for her could get solace from the fact they were getting on board an exciting and popular campaign that was going to win” [Sean King, New York Daily News]. ” That’s just not where we are right now. Democrats who supported Hillary weren’t holding their nose when they got on board with Obama. That’s exactly what Bernie supporters would be expected to do now. Voters of a more likable candidate who is beating Donald Trump handily in the polls will be expected to get behind a widely disliked candidate who is struggling… Yes, we’re still in the thick of the campaign, but her trustworthiness and favorability aren’t going up anytime soon. My gut tells me, though, that her campaign and the Democratic establishment will do little to nothing to woo Bernie’s supporters. They’ll just expect everybody to come together by osmosis and that’s just not going to happen.” And again, unlike the PUMAs, Sanders voters have the tools to do something to create alternatives.

“Hillary Clinton’s run for the White House will be a test case of whether playing the ‘woman card’ is a winning hand” [Bloomberg]. “Senator Barbara Boxer, a California Democrat, said Clinton ‘really rewrote the rules and took a lot of the heat’ as first lady but there remain lingering, often subtle, biases—that women are ‘overly emotional, that we’re not tough enough, but when we do try to be tough we’re not really tough we’re just shrill,’ she said” [Bloomberg]. Cuts both ways. Do we really want somebody who continually has to prove they’re “tough enough” with their finger on the trigger?

“Sanders is beating Obama’s 2008 youth vote record. And the primary’s not even over” [Vox]. “Sanders is beating Clinton by a 71-to-28 margin, receiving more than 2.4 million votes from young voters in the 25 states we can compare, according to numbers compiled by Kei Kawashima-Ginsberg, director of the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement at Tufts.


“As he has done across the country this primary season, Sanders commands the support of younger voters by huge margins in advance of Tuesday’s primary — even among Latinos and Asians, voter groups that Clinton easily won when she ran eight years ago. Many of his backers come from a large pool of voters who have registered for the first time in the weeks before the election” [Los Angeles TImes]. And… Well, did they ever figure out what happened to those missing 100K votes in Brooklyn?

“Clinton running phone banks in Spanish, Mandarin, Korean, Cantonese, Vietnamese and Tagalog” [CNN]. “As she spends the next few days crisscrossing California, Clinton is relying heavily on her relationships with California politicians — some that go back decades. Her army of surrogates include national Democratic leaders like [relative-by-marriage] Sen. Barbara Boxer as well as scores of local elected officials. This network of supporters has been particularly critical to the campaign’s outreach to non-white voters — an expansive effort that includes multi-lingual phone banks and TV ads.”

“Videos posted on Twitter and online by local and national media showed clashes on Thursday evening in the street outside of the San Jose Convention Center, where demonstrators fought and threw punches. Hundreds of protesters waved Mexican flags, chanted anti-Trump slogans and burned Trump hats and at least one U.S. flag” [Reuters]. “Violence has peppered recent rallies in New Mexico and California, the U.S. state with the largest immigrant population, in advance of primary elections there on Tuesday. Trump opponents have said the unrest is fueled in part by his fired up tone.” Well, if you really think Trump is a fascist, why gamble on an uncertain outcome in November? I think I asked this before… But I don’t recall interviews with actual protesters. Readers? The reason I’m asking is that I can think of the following players with interest in, er, sharpening the contradictions through violence: Trump, Brock, the cops, and Black bloc types, in addition to organic protesters. How do we get a sense of the mix?

Our Famously Free Press

WaPo recyles, sadly, Reddit [WaPo].

The Trail

“The essence of the argument [in Clinton’s foreign policy speech] is simple. You may not agree with everything she says or everything she’s done or will do, but you can at least be sure that a Clinton presidency won’t lead to some enormous unforeseen cataclysm. With Trump, there’s no such guarantee” [Matt Yglesias, Vox]. “[I]t’s not an argument that’s going to warm the hearts of liberals. Pursuing the argument that Trump is simply too risky to serve as president requires Clinton to try to denude the campaign of as much ideological content as possible.” It is an argument to appeal to liberals (and moderate Republicans). It’s not an argument to appeal to the left, or to volatility voters, generally. Yglesias references Barro on “tail risk,” where of course the question is “tail risk for whom?” Personally, I don’t think Trump’s any more likely to press the nuclear button than Clinton, who voted for Iraq and Afghanistan, instigated the Libyan debacle, instigated a coup in Honduras, and whose creature, neo-con Victoria Nuland, did her best to foment yet another war, this time wiht Russia, in Ukraine. Don’t Acela riders like Yglesias have a rather tendentious notion of stability? (To be fair, the smaller nuclear weapons that Obama has developed might give Clinton the chance to press the button without creating an actual cataclysm. So there’s that.)

“The US economy created 38,000 jobs in May, the slowest pace of job growth in five years, according to disappointing statistics released today by the Labor Department. It’s an ominous sign for the US economy — and for Hillary Clinton’s chances of beating Donald Trump in the November election” [Vox]. ” If this month’s report signals the start of a recession, that would boost Donald Trump’s chances of becoming the next president. Much more below at “Stats Watch,” but only a [racist|sexist|#BernieBro] would tell you this isn’t the best economy EVAH! What’s wrong with you people?

Clinton Email Hairball

“Nixonian palace guard now protects Hillary: Jonathan Turley” [USA Today]. “Greatest danger from electing Clinton president may be her cadre of fawning aides.”

Indeed, recently, top Clinton aides took the notable step of agreeing to be represented by the same lawyers in both the criminal and civil investigations into the email scandal. That is a move that can greatly assure a more uniform account in the testimony of Clinton aides. It is also a move that rejects potential conflicts between aides in both their recollections and interests. In the most recent depositions, that joint counsel instructed key aide Cheryl Mills to simply refuse to answer most of the questions about the reasons and arrangements made for the use of a personal server at the State Department. So far Clinton’s top aides have remained a uniform front.

It is hard not to think of Nixon aides like John Ehrlichman and H.R. Haldeman in the “palace guard” surrounding Nixon. They should be a cautionary tale for all of these aides. Ehrlichman would later look back and marvel at the loss of his own sense of self and independence: “I, in effect, abdicated my moral judgments and turned them over to somebody else.”

Turley’s not wrong.

Stats Watch

Employment Situation, May 2016: Nonfarm Payrolls M/M change, consensus: 158,000; consensus range: 110,000 to 219,000 ; actual: 38,000 . Grim [Econoday]. “Payrolls by industry show wide declines apart from telecommunications. Construction spending has been strong but construction payrolls, at minus 15,000, are down for a second month. Manufacturing payrolls, which have been consistently weak, are weak again, down 10,000 in the month. And mining payrolls extended their long contraction….” On the positive side, government payrolls are up.” And: “Non-seasonally adjusted non-farm payrolls improved 697,000 – worse than last year and well below average for May’s in times of economic expansion” [Econintersect].

Worse: “The headline jobs number was very disappointing, and there were downward revisions to job growth for prior months. The key negatives were few jobs added (only 38 thousand, although the Verizon strike cut the job growth by about 37 thousand), a decline in the participation rate, and a sharp increase in the number of people working part time for economic reasons” [Calculated Risk]. Even worse: “There’s other bad news in the report too. Over the past six months, the economy had started to reverse a years-long decline in the labor force participation rate — a sign that a healthy economy was starting to draw workers who had left the economy back in. But the latest report shows the economy has given most of those gains back, with the labor force participation rate falling from 63 percent in March to 62.6 percent in May.” [Vox]. And: “While the strike at Verizon lowered the jobs numbers in the establishment survey by roughly 35,000, the picture would be little changed if these numbers were added in” [CEPR]. But: “The weak employment report bucks data on consumer spending, industrial production, goods exports and housing that have suggested the economy is gathering speed after growth slowed to a 0.8% annualized rate in the first quarter” [Futures]. Or in chart form via MarketWatch (with markup added):


And a second chart, also from MarketWatch:


So look for plenty of cheering from virtue-signalling liberals under Rule #2 of neo-liberalism: “Go die”. (Anyhow, they’re uneducated whites, so they’re all racists and deserve whatever they get.)

And a third chart, from the Economic Policy Institute:

Liberals: They need credentials!

And a fourth chart:

On “Education and Health Care Services,” how much of that is delivery of real services to citizens, and how much is administration? Readers?

International Trade, April 2016: “The nation’s trade deficit is narrower than expected, at $37.4 billion in April with March revised sharply lower, to $35.5 billion from $40.4 billion. Exports show wide strength in the April data, up 1.5 percent and with particular strength in industrial supplies and autos and including gains for foods, consumer goods as well as capital goods” [Econoday]. “Imports rose 2.1 percent in the month led, in what is welcome news for business investment, by capital goods which surged $2.5 billion. Industrial supplies and also autos and consumer goods show import gains with the latter two pointing especially to strength in domestic demand.” Good news for GDP.

PMI Services Index, May 2016: “Markit Economics’ service-sector report appeared to be signaling what was exaggerated weakness in the nation’s economy, that is until this morning’s depressing employment data” [Econoday]. “Growth in new orders, hit by weakness in investment spending, continues to slow and is among the weakest readings in the 7-year history of this series. Service firms unfortunately had little choice but to work down backlogs which contracted for a 10th month in a row which is a telling statistic. The sample is still adding to payrolls but by the least amount since January last year.”

Factory Orders, April 2016: “Factory orders did rise 1.9 percent in April but reflect a monthly swing higher for civilian aircraft. Otherwise, data are mostly soft especially for core capital goods where orders, reflecting contraction for machinery, fell 0.6 percent and follow a soft 0.3 percent rise in March and a steep 2.1 percent decline in February” [Econoday]. “Orders for non-durable goods rose 0.4 percent and reflect, not fundamental strength in demand, but the month’s rise in energy prices.” And: “US Census says manufacturing new orders improved. Our analysis says sales improved but less than the headline numbers. The rolling averages improved, but remain in contraction” [Econintersect].

ISM Non-Mfg Index, May 2016: “The ISM’s non-manufacturing index confirms what is proving to be a very weak month of May for the nation’s economy” [Econoday]. “This report has been consistently upbeat which underscores the unwelcome importance of today’s results.” And: Below expecations. “Important internals declined but remain in expansion” [Econintersect].

ISM Mfd (yesterday): “It was an unusual set of results. The new orders gauge held strong at 55.7, but the production measure cooled from 54.2 to 52.6 and the employment index was steady just below 50 yet again. The supplier deliveries component shot up by 5 points to 54.1, the highest reading since 2014. It was this component that made the difference between a rise in the headline figure and a decline” [Amherst Pierpont Securities, Across the Curve]. Meanwhile, the inventories index inched lower to 45.0, the 11th straight month that manufacturers have cut raw materials inventories. The ISM spokesman noted that this reflects a “very, very conservative inventories policy” and was likely responsible for the difficulty that suppliers had in filling their customers’ orders in a timely manner.”

Corporate Profits: “Seems the corporate profits report includes the Fed’s profits, all of which get turned over to the Treasury, of course…” [Mosler Economics].

Shipping: “The trucking industry went on a vehicle buying binge in 2014 and 2015, and many companies are now struggling to find enough freight to fill their expanded fleets. Most large trucking companies have said they will sharply reduce purchases of new trucks until the market shows signs of improvement” [Wall Street Journal, “Heavy-Duty Truck Orders Tumbled 31% in May”]. “Orders typically see a lull in May, but were still well below the 18,000 to 19,000 new vehicles per month needed just to replace aging and damaged trucks, analysts said. Freight volumes typically pick up in late summer, as stores restock for back-to-school and holiday shopping seasons. However, retailers are holding onto historically high inventories, meaning they need to buy fewer goods to keep shelves full and replenish warehouse stocks.”

Shipping: Rail, calculated with year-on-year rolling averages and backing out coal and grain from carloads, improved, contra AAR data yesterday [Econintersect].

Retail: “[C]omments about the scourge of late March and April [sales] have come from more than a dozen [apparel] retailers” [The Fashion Law]. “But there was no macro slump, and no disaster — just deep discounting. … It’s time for retailers to stop blaming a weak consumer for their sales slump. It’s true they face industry-wide challenges such as online retailing and consumer preferences. But they need to realize that the way they are fighting back — by offering holiday-like promotions and hoping for the best — is hurting them even more.”

The Bezzle: “Uber is in the sub-prime auto business” [Houston Chronicle]. “Uber is having a hard time finding enough people with cars willing to work for them. To solve that problem, the company has raised $1 billion to start Xchange Leasing, a sub-prime lender with the sole purpose of getting poor people into new cars so they can drive for the ride-hailing service.”

The Bezzle: “A Middle East investor is now Uber’s single largest source of cash. On Wednesday, the global ride-sharing startup said it had raised $3.5 billion from Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, the main investment fund of the kingdom” [Boing Boing]. It’s all about synergy. Beheading and whipping fits well with Travis Kalanick’s labor relations model.

The Bezzle: “The independent regulatory authority of Abu Dhabi’s newest financial free zone is seeking to promote the development of blockchain startups as part of a drive to create new efficiencies in the regional financial sector” [CoinDesk].

The Bezzle: “[T]his feels like the final stages of the current unicorn boom, like when your best friend who never invested in the stock market started buying dot-com stocks in early 2000” [Business Insider]. “The good news is that Silicon Valley always renews itself.” O rly? The Archdruid would disagree.

The Bezzle: “Twitter Is Betting Everything on Jack Dorsey. Will It Work?” [Vanity Fair]. Twitter, as it turns out, is a public good. Therefore, capital runs it badly.

The Fed: “[Brian Bethune, an economics professor at Tufts University] said the job report is a lagging indicator and is reflecting the weak growth in the first quarter. He said the U.S. central bank won’t know much about the resilience of the economy until the September meeting. … Traders who use fed funds futures contracts now see only a 4% chance of a rate hike in June, according to CME FedWatch. ” [MarketWatch]. Right when people will have started to pay attention to the election.

The Fed: “In a troubling sign that the economic recovery may have stalled, at least temporarily, the government reported on Friday that employers added just 38,000 workers in May. The significant plunge in hiring is likely to push back a decision by the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates” [New York Times]. “Stalled.” Watch those airplane metaphors from elites! (Being flown is one of the few times and places elites feel out of control, so they tend to apply that metaphor to all systems larger than themselves and their own class where outcomes are not completely predictable. “Turbulence,” “headwinds,” “tailwinds,” “hard landing,” etc.

The Fed: “Nevertheless: does anybody want to say that the Federal Reserve’s increase in interest rates last December and its subsequent champing-at-the-bit chatter about raising interest rates was prudent in retrospect? Anyone? Anyone? Bueller?” [Bradford J. DeLong].

“Yahoo! Inc.’s Messenger has for almost 18 years been the default communication tool for the men and women who each day move billions of dollars’ worth of crude oil and petroleum products around the planet. From Singapore to Rotterdam, daily deals are pitched, contracts negotiated and global price benchmarks assessed on the chat service” [Bloomberg]. “Now the company’s core business, including its chat service, is up for sale and the future of Messenger is uncertain. Yahoo, meanwhile, is forcing new users to an updated platform that compliance officers at some trading houses have declared off limits because the chats can’t be recorded and logged internally.” Is there anything Yahoo! can’t fuck up?

Today’s Fear & Greed Index: 75, Extreme Greed (previous close: 79, Extreme Greed) [CNN]. One week ago: 77 (Neutral). (0 is Extreme Fear; 100 is Extreme Greed).Last updated Jun 3 at 11:29am. Almost broke the 80 psychological barrier, there. Oh well….

Health Care

“Health journalists seeking information from government agencies often encounter obstacles, especially at the federal level, according to AHCJ’s recent survey. The biggest roadblocks involve delays, bureaucracy, scripted replies, and barriers to interviews, survey respondents said” [Health Journalism].


“Decolonizing Permaculture: Exploring the Intersection of Permaculture and Decolonization” [The Hampton Institute]. “This matters because an injury to one is an injury to all. I know that sounds trite and cliche, but that’s because it’s a truism.”

“Record $286 billion spent on renewables in 2015: Study” [CNBC].

“Researchers in the United States and Canada have located 39 unreported sources of major pollution using a new satellite-based method, the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration said” [Reuters]. “The unreported sources of toxic sulfur dioxide emissions are clusters of coal-burning power plants, smelters and oil and gas operations in the Middle East, Mexico and Russia that were found in an analysis of satellite data from 2005 to 2014, NASA said in a statement on Wednesday. ”

“While it makes up 18 percent of the United States’ total area, the state stores 53 percent of all of the nation’s carbon, much of it in permafrost below the ground, the USGS study reports. Indeed, it adds that wildfires in Alaska give off more greenhouse gases to the atmosphere annually than all fires in the Lower 48 states” [WaPo]. “Clearly, any change to this carbon in one direction — shifting it from the land to the atmosphere — would be disastrous. But is that happening?”


“The Louvre is Closing as Flood Waters Threaten Paris” [Atlas Obscura]. “‘[The Seine has] risen over 15 feet above normal levels.”

Guilotine Watch

“Busy with work schedules and wary of weekend traffic, some homeowners are buying second homes in the same city as their primary residence” [Wall Street Journal, “The Ultimate Staycation? A Second Home in the Same City”]. So it’s not just wealthy foreigners creating buildings with no lights on at night.

“Ferrari has announced a one-off custom version of its 458 Speciale — the ultimate and final version of the highly-successful 458 line — built to the specifications of a wealthy British client” [Business Insider].

Class Warfare

“Why the Verizon Worker’s Victory is A Big Deal” [Portside].

News of the Wired

“Deep in a dark cave in southwestern France lie half a dozen mysterious structures that scientists believe were built by Neanderthals 176,000 years ago — about 140,000 years before the first modern humans arrived in Europe” [Los Angeles Times]. “Archaeologists say these mineral formations were probably broken off the cave floor by ancient hands and then deliberately arranged into two large rings and a series of four round piles up to 15 inches high….Red and black soot smudges and other evidence of fires can be found inside the structures, but not outside them. That suggests they may have been used to contain fire, perhaps to light the cave. ”

“#NoTROHere – Defending Free Speech and MuckRock” [Another Word for It] “The public is the ultimate arbiter of the conduct of its government. Concealment of information by government serves only to breed mistrust and a lack of confidence in outcomes.”

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


Chris writes: “I found this Wolf’s Milk slime mold on my straw bale this morning, considering your interest in recyclers I thought I’d send it your way. Straw bale organically conditioned with my own homemade carp hydrolysate, along with bone and blood meal.” Sounds awesome!

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About Lambert Strether

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


  1. JohnnyGL

    Lambert: On “Education and Health Care Services,” how much of that is delivery of real services to citizens, and how much is administration? Readers?

    Where my wife works, a Community Health Center, they’ve gone through a pretty big expansion recently. A lot of that was funded by the Sanders amendment to the ACA. I didn’t realize quite how important that was at the time, but now these institutions have a lot more resources to manage the opiod disaster that is upon us. She tells me there’s so many overdoses that they seem to happen almost daily.

    1. Parker Dooley

      I spent most of my career as a primary care doc and medical director at a Community Health Center. Many of those years we were on the brink of closure. Sanders made a huge difference to what turned out to be an essential medical institution, now serving over 50% of the population of our rural county with income based, sliding fee services. Thanks, Bernie!

  2. C

    “The essence of the argument [in Clinton’s foreign policy speech] is simple. You may not agree with everything she says or everything she’s done or will do, but you can at least be sure that a Clinton presidency won’t lead to some enormous unforeseen cataclysm. With Trump, there’s no such guarantee” [Matt Yglesias, Vox].

    There are two critical problems with this line. First, she has actively championed some real cataclysms such as Iraq, Libya, Syria, and Yemen. While she has not, publicly, argued for pushing the button there is no way that she can claim a foreign policy record of success or stability. And moreover, many of these same crises are still spinning, probably out of control. That is not a strong argument for any form of “success.”

    Second, it rests on the same fact-free approach that she has taken this whole time. Rather than point to a specific thing she has done (see point 1) or specific things that she will do Clinton is relying on a general identification with style or a general fear of the other. Leaving aside the liberal versus conservative illusion this will not play well with voters who vote based upon what they want a politician to do not how they look.

    1. Jim Haygood

      “You can at least be sure that a Clinton presidency WILL lead to some enormous unforeseen SCANDAL.”

      — Lessons of History, 1993-2016

    2. Anne

      Some observations:

      Hillary’s not getting anywhere smugly looking down her nose and casting barely-witty bon mots at the likes of Donald Trump; her delivery of those pearls from someone else’s pen was so scripted it carried little believability.

      I worry less about Trump’s poor impulse control than I do finding ourselves in Clinton’s pot of slowly-heating water that will eventually boil over. In case she wants to know, slowly being boiled to death is not better than being instantly incinerated – and that, I fear, is the choice with a Clinton v. Trump contest.

      I’ve noticed, too, that she has a tendency to try to make it seem like being in the same room with world leaders makes her a person of wise and rational judgment; I guess she picked up that technique from her friends in the media, who seem to think that eating cocktail weenies and clinking wine glasses with Washington insiders elevates their shoddy reporting to Pulitzer-level.

      That Clinton was getting praise for that performance yesterday just makes no sense to me.

      1. c

        So far at least most of the praise that I have seen for her “epic speech” yesterday has come from outlets that have already endorsed her so they are predisposed to be blown away.

      2. optimader

        slowly being boiled to death is not better than being instantly incinerated

        This I think is a classic illustration of an argument from false choice.

        No basis to claim the latter part of the comparison. The former part, I can connect historical dots in a straight line that point from HRC to the pot of water.

        In fact on the flip side,I can easily make a case for HRC being more of a threat of exercising bad judgment leading to incineration, intended or by blunder driven by created circumstance.

        Considering her record, I don’t think she understands, or at least cares to implement the concept of win – win negotiating.

      3. Peter Bernhardt

        Anne, it’s called PR. And it’s pathetic. This emperor truly has no clothes.

      4. montanamaven

        Excellent analysis, Anne. The image of the media types eating cocktail weenies with generals and world leaders thinking they are really really smart and insightful will stick with me for a long time.
        I was quite appalled at the bunch on “Morning Joe” this morning. “Smug” is the right word for both Hillary and her sycophants and shills. And I don’t think “smug” will play well with a great many Americans.
        Her speech, they said, was her best evuh! Mika sang her praised, but then said in almost a throw away manner and with no sense of irony that there actually was no foreign policy points made in her foreign policy speech. But it was the best produced speech of her career evuh! Then they bring on an advance man to explain why it was such a great production. He explained how smart she was to leave the campaign trail and practice that speech. He explained how there were people in the small audience who had the speech and would lead the clapping at all the right places. He explained why they had found a small theater with perfect acoustics so she could speak with a normal voice and not sound “shrill” like she normally does. And even though she’s not as good at reading from a teleprompter like Obama, she did the best job evvuh! of reading her script. And, oh the jokes!! What zingers! What a comedian! No, those were not jokes or humorous. They were sarcastic remarks. And I think it was Twain that said that sarcasm was a middling form of humor. It is. Sarcasm is laughter at someone else’s expense and no real comedian uses it. It will always backfire.
        And again with no sense of irony, they wish that Trump would be more scripted and less authentic.
        And what is with this meme of the week that they are all spouting; “She looks presidential”??
        Nobody should look “presidential”. Just do the job right.
        And making fun of Trump’s red hat is a recipe for disaster. Baseball hats, trucker’s hats are very very American. Who says that a president can’t wear a hat? Maggie Thatcher wore a funny red hat too.

    3. Jason

      Clinton’s record as SoS is one of leaving disaster behind her. But when it comes to nukes, as you pointed out, she does have something of a record. Clinton did not advocate for nuclear weapons use or saber-rattling, though she certainly could have found support for a such a position if she wanted to.

      Contrast that with Trump’s blathering ignorance: “With nuclear, the power, the devastation is very important to me.”

      For me, the idea of President Trump’s foreign policy is pure nightmare fuel. Nukes in particular, yes, but also across the board. (Anyone who thinks he’d be isolationist in any way is indulging in wishful thinking, and has paid no attention to Trump.) With his combination of deliberate ignorance, ego, and bullying arrogance, I think Trump would be far more likely to let the nuclear genie out of the bottle than any other presidential candidate with a real chance in the last forty years or more.

      His campaign spokeswoman Pierson said, “What good does it do to have a good nuclear triad if you’re afraid to use it?”

      It’s wretched and wrong to be in a position of choosing between Clinton and Trump, but that seems to be the real dilemma of our sham democracy. And while it makes me sick, it’s working, because I don’t think I have a choice.

      1. Katniss Everdeen

        clinton’s insistence that nato has the right to put missiles on Russia’s borders, as well as her love of Ukraine-manipulating victoria nuland is her nuclear “saber-rattling.”

        Trump would “talk” with Putin. clinton would antagonize him.

        You don’t have to believe it, but that’s what each one said.

      2. pretzelattack

        how about the kagan family? what is their record on nukes? bush 2? kissinger? you know, the people clinton goes on vacation with, or wants in her administration, or views as mentors. how about reagan, the new icon of today’s democratic party, admired by both obama and clinton? what about her policy in the ukraine, exacerbating tensions with the other nuclear superpower, or the south china sea, with yet another nuclear rival?

      3. bdy

        We can’t know which one of these losers is more or less likely to kill everybody off. One never met a war she didn’t like, the other is a pathetic blowhard who has no idea wtf is going on. Either would relish the job. Clinton has already scripted her legacy as “Hard Choicer”, and triggering the die-off because she had to “get it done” dovetails perfectly with every other humanitarian disaster she proudly cites as an accomplishment. And Trump has done everything but confess that it would “pump (his) nads to blow s*** up.”

        The two are clearly not the same. But when I ask “who is the looser cannon?” Magic 8-ball says “yes.”

        1. low integer

          But when I ask “who is the looser cannon?” Magic 8-ball says “yes.”


    4. craazyboy

      I think Matt may be arguing all of Hil’s cataclysms are already seen.

      But that sounds bit weak of an argument to me. But I’m not a foreign policy expert. Maybe Hil might get us out of Afgani? Ukraine has been quiet in the news ever since that Nazi Putin shot down the big airplane. Except for NATO securing Eastern Europe, and Russia starting up an arms buildup, I mean. The Axis of Evil is begging for attention again. China has islands sprouting outta the China Sea. That’s weird. Trump could certainly mess all that up. Somehow.

    5. petal

      I had a good chuckle-with Clinton, you know for sure you’re going to go off the cliff at full speed.

      1. polecat

        That’s not just any train your on, as it plunges down the gorge………it’s a bullet train speeding at mach 16 !!

        1. petal

          Definitely not “unforeseen”! Ha!

          Over on Greenwald’s twitter last night, they were going to town about all the flags and comparing her to Ten Flag Tony (Abbott), etc. It was pretty funny.

    6. Jeff W


      Pursuing the argument that Trump is simply too risky to serve as president requires Clinton to try to denude the campaign of as much ideological content as possible.

      It doesn’t require Clinton to do that, it allows her to do it—and she very much wants to because she has to. Her argument boils down to “My policies don’t matter. My record doesn’t matter. My character doesn’t matter. He has his finger on the button!” It’s as much the politics of distraction as it is the politics of fear, if not more. (Fear just happens to be a very powerful distractor.)

      1. jrs

        So the logical conclusion of all that is: no one person should have their finger on the button as it’s just too risky. Right?

        Although I often doubt anyone really does, but then I don’t claim to have any insider track on how the spooks would really conduct a nuclear war. I’m pretty ignorant there.

        Although it is possible Hillary has her own unauthorized nuclear device in a basement somewhere … and she could have her finger on it ..

        1. Pavel

          On a related note, Nobel Peace Prize Prez™ Obama — one of Hillary’s apparent idols — has signed off on spending one trillion (with a “T”) dollars on modernising the US nuclear weaponry. That’s really responsible and sending a comforting note to the Russians, isn’t it?

          1. craazyboy

            I have a dim recollection that both Prez Bill Clinton and I think even GWB had negotiated the warhead count down w/Russia. Mindboggling we decided we need to go the other direction. But the SS Trust fund will cover it, I’m sure. Oh wait. We just print the money and sell treasury bonds for fun. Almost forgot.

          2. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

            Obomba deigning to visit Hiroshima, offering no apology, dodging the protest signs, while pushing a cool trillion $ in new nuclear bomb spending was…I dunno, revolting? Infuriating? Disgusting? Hideous?
            History will not be kind methinks.

      2. EndOfTheWorld

        I’m looking forward to the debate—-The Donald vs. The Hildebeast. The beauty of Trump is he just says whatever he wants to. He’ll find ways to weave ALL of the Clintons’ baggage into answers to the debate questions. The press won’t be able to ignore him, not at the debate. Why? Because he’s the repug candidate for president at a presidential debate. If he says Vince Foster was murdered, probably by Bill and/or Hill, the press will dutifully take a look at the Vince Foster death. For example.

        1. Jeff W

          Well, Trump might say whatever he wants to, which will, no doubt, have its entertainment value. The problem for Clinton will be that a lot of it will be true.

          So the contour of the debates, indeed the entire contest, will be

          TRUMP: Clinton did x, y and z.

          CLINTON: Trump is crazy (and, therefore, dangerous).

          It’s a lot harder to sustain Clinton’s line of argument when those facts—x, y and z—are true; in other words, how crazy can Trump be, really, if what he is saying is true? (Logic says that both candidates could be right—Clinton could have done x, y and z and Trump might still be crazy—but people are often not logical.)

  3. grayslady

    To me, as interesting as the zip code analysis of Bernie contributors published in the LA Times was that the largest class of donors (such as education, legal, finance, etc.) was Unemployed/Retired at 28%. These are people living on, in many cases, next to nothing but are going without in order to help Bernie win. I think you can add this 28% number to the high income group who will also never vote for Hillary. I’m also confident that Bernie knows how desperate many of his donors are, and that this is another reason he is determined to fight on against stiff odds.

    1. C

      Agreed. That fact has to be sobering to him. It also explains why his campaign takes interviews at the La Qinta inn rather than the Ritz Carleton.

    2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Public financing is probably better in this case.

      In general, (not to impute Sanders will lose), you don’t the poor to go without, and to suffer even more when their guy or gal doesn’t win.

      Let the government pay for that.

      And the question that comes to mind is, whether this will impact when Sanders will call if off (in preparing his plan B or C, or whatever)?

      1. grayslady

        Ordinarily I would agree with you about public financing–of all elections. But I think something is happening here that is beyond a simple election. I think that for the first time people who don’t have much to live on see that even a $5 or $10 donation, when matched by thousands of other small donations, can really make a difference. The sense of empowerment that small donors must feel, when they see Bernie raising more money than Hillary, is probably one of the few areas they have anymore where they can help control events rather than feeling that events control them. It’s all about personal dignity, and regaining that understanding of everyone chipping in whatever s/he can for the common good.

    3. Elizabeth Burton

      There is a man on one of the Sanders Facebook groups I’m a member of who alleges he’s homeless but nevertheless sends a few dollars when he can to the campaign. I haven’t attempted to verify it, and the two times I’ve seen a post it was the same one. Still, knowing more than a few of the homeless are also gainfully employed, if it’s true, it’s a telling example of just how deep Bernie’s message is going.

    4. Ian

      I have to wonder, Bernie is not an idiot and I dont doubt that he is well aware of what is going on. I want to know what he is thinking as he is getting defrauded of the primaries and what kind of backroom talks he is having.

  4. reslez

    Re: Twitter links

    Social media is blocked where I work for security reasons. None of the Twitter or Facebook links work for me. (Things like scribd and dropbox are also banned.)

    I don’t miss it personally except when I come here. It seems like copy-and-paste from Twitter has become more frequent in Watercooler lately. Not sure how many other readers are affected or if the policy will spread to more companies. Hopefully not.

      1. jrs

        Yes. Social media is blocked, it’s hard sometimes when some twitter link actually contains the substance of the content being discussed. When it’s just a silly aside or something I just ignore, but sometimes substantial content is unaccessible.

  5. Jim Haygood

    No sooner did the emboldened Yellenites start fantasizing about a June rate hike as stocks crept up, did they once again burn their stubby fingers on the hot stove of a weak jobs report.

    In equally predictable fashion, the stubbornly innumerate Z site was darkly muttering about conspiracy, as the headline unemployment rate dropped to a nine-year low of 4.7%.

    The jobs count and the unemployment rate are two separate surveys. They correlate, but they don’t have to move in lockstep.

    In particular, exclude enough “discouraged workers” from the eligible workforce, and you can manufacture a low unemployment percentage rate, even when jobs added and wage growth are rather stagnant.

    Let’s pencil in Sep. 21st (“meeting associated with a Summary of Economic Projections and a press conference by the Chair” — hot stuff!) as the next Fed Groundhog Day(TM).

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      I think by then, the economy will have elected the next president for us.

  6. Cocomaan

    Newsweek: Exclusive: Hillary Clinton and Her Staff May Have Compromised Counterterrorism Ops With ‘Sloppy’ Communications


    To me, this is the end of the road for her. If bureaucrats are giving up secrets, they are violating one of Weber’s iron rules of bureaucracy, which is that the secret session is inviolate.

    The concept of the “official secret” is the specific invention of bureaucracy…

    1. nippersmom

      Clintonistas will latch onto “he admits, ‘I had no proof’ ” and ignore everything else.

      1. Cocomaan

        Oh I’m sure they will. They already are. But any suggestion of someone letting ISIS win turns people apoplectic, and as we NC readers know, ISIS somehow appears in places other than the Levant these days. Strange.

    2. optimader

      3rd rule—- someone went limp?
      (ok we can waive 6th rule)

      The Rules of Fight Club.

      1st RULE: You do not talk about FIGHT CLUB.
      2nd RULE: You DO NOT talk about FIGHT CLUB.
      3rd RULE: If someone says “stop” or goes limp, taps out the fight is over.
      4th RULE: Only two guys to a fight.
      5th RULE: One fight at a time.
      6th RULE: No shirts, no shoes.
      7th RULE: Fights will go on as long as they have to.
      8th RULE: If this is your first night at FIGHT CLUB, you HAVE to fight.

  7. MRLost

    Further on “Education and Health Care Services” how much of that increase is marketing? ACA has forced insurance providers to do far more marketing to both subscribers (ordinary folks, sometimes called patients) and providers (doctors, clinics, hospitals) than previously. Putting together provider networks for multiple variations of bronze, silver and gold options is a combination of marketing (Hey! If you participate in our cheap silver plan at the following rate, we can promise X number of patients on a monthly basis!) and administrative number crunching. An insurer can have the best coverage at the lowest cost in the country but if nobody knows about it, then that insurance company will go bust. Marketing, marketing, marketing. All those Dilbert comics are true.

  8. shinola

    WARNING! Nausea inducing content below

    From Jonathon Turley’s USA Today article (Under Clinton Email Hairball:

    “…please tell HRC that she was a ROCK STAR yesterday. Everything about her ‘performance’ was what makes her unique, beloved, and destined for even more greatness. She sets a standard that lesser mortals can only dream of emulating.”

    This type of thing usually comes from a teenybop gushing over the latest pop idol. In this case it comes from the Deputy Sec’y of the Dept. of Energy.
    Kinda makes you wonder about the objectivity (or lack thereof) of HRC’s entourage who may be appointed to important positions if she wins.

    The “lesser mortals” part is particularly barf inducing.

    1. craazyboy

      I don’t recall a real rock star getting a review that syrupy gushy. I gotta go puke now.

        1. just me

          Edgar Bergen: Snow White is immortal!
          Charlie McCarthy: Well who isn’t once in awhile?

    2. voteforno6

      I can’t help but think of Rosten’s Law:

      “First-rate men hire first-rate men; second-rate men hire third-rate men.”

      The best and the brightest they are not. If anything, they’re living proof that one should never assume that a person is more intelligent than you, just because that person is in an “important” position. The Clintonistas like to go on at how intelligent and knowledgeable, and hard-working Hillary Clinton is. How true is that? After all, according to them, she needed her personal server and Blackberry because she couldn’t figure out how to use email on a PC. Even my mother can use email, and she had trouble figuring out how to program a VCR.

      1. pretzelattack

        the computer “expert” that rigged up the home server had to show bill clinton how to log onto aol. i have no idea why he would want to log onto aol, but there it is.

      2. optimader

        That’s a good law, haven’t read that one before.

        I concur, HRC’s “intellectual gravitas” I think has been one of the biggest flimflams going.. and this may be elemental to her unraveling. Cant have the fiction both ways.

    3. Peter Bernhardt

      That had to be satire. No other explanation this side of Uriah Heap makes sense.

    4. JM

      I really think at this point this type of communication about Clinton is counterproductive. One would think that at some point the establishment has to accept that Hillary is disliked and distrusted by 6 of 10 Americans. They COULD do her some good by, at least, changing the tone of the message. Those 6 of 10 Americans just laugh at this.

      1. notabanker

        The real problem is the other 4 of 10, and that most of them will vote. I am an expat overseas and it doesn’t matter if you talk to Europeans or third world Asians, the rest of the world thinks Americans are dopes. And it is an impossible argument to win right now.

  9. DJG

    The violence in San Jose. [First, we all know that the most serious violence was the Rattling of the Chairs in Nevada, but I digress.]

    At first blush, what I will put out there is that those who showed up aren’t a perfect match (Venn Diagram-wise) for Sanders supporters. So Lambert’s question, just who are they?, remains to be answered.

    One of the reasons that they don’t seem like Sanders supporters, who learned many things after the Shutdown in Chicago and the Nevada Great Furniture Rattling, is that you don’t make desperate / alienating statements. Demonstrating with Mexican flags in California? You might as well hand over the evening to Trump and his supporters…

    The optics. The amateurishness. But I doubt that this is the last demonstration that will end badly between now and the Inauguration next January.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Whoever lifted that chair, was he on a lift-weight/low-caloric-intake longevity program?

      Perhaps Sanders supporters have learned…those supporters in Chicago and Nevada. But what about California supporters? Campaign workers are likely to be more organized and coordinated. I am not sure about supporters.

      If what you say is correct, what supporters in other states have learned might not have been passed on to supporters in California.

      In fact, I doubt any candidate has much control over his/her supporters. Campaign workers – more likely and thus, yes.

      Supporters – who’s got a list?

      Perhaps not even supporters.

      Maybe just sympathizers, or people leaning that way.

    2. craazyboy

      Demonstrating with Mexican flags in California? You might as well hand over the evening to Trump and his supporters…

      I don’t think it’s that clear cut. In fact, to answer Lambert’s question, I wouldn’t rely on any answer that was not derived from a very large sample size and obtained under sodium pentathol. The range of possible answers could be anything from “Trump pissed me off” to “my 14 relatives with no papers aren’t going back” to “we are Alamo Deniers” to “we belong to a large biker gang that is the retail arm of the Mexican drug lords.” I guess it could have been politically staged too.

    3. Katniss Everdeen

      Burning an american flag. Smooth move. President Trump says, “Thanks. Now get ’em outta here.”

      1. Pavel

        Remember it was Senator Hillary Clinton who called for a federal law to ban flag-burning! So according to her way of thinking, those protesters should be thrown in jail for a year:

        The Flag Protection Act of 2005 was a proposed United States federal law introduced by Senators Hillary Rodham Clinton and Robert Bennett. The law would have outlawed flag burning, and called for a punishment of one year in jail and a fine of $100,000.[1][2]

        According to the nonpartisan Congressional Research Service, the act was summarized as such:

        Amends the federal criminal code to revise provisions regarding desecration of the flag to prohibit: (1) destroying or damaging a U.S. flag with the primary purpose and intent to incite or produce imminent violence or a breach of the peace; or (2) stealing or knowingly converting the use of a U.S. flag either belonging to the United States or on lands reserved for the United States and intentionally destroying or damaging that flag.[3]
        Since the law was not passed nor considered by the United States Congress, its constitutionality was not challenged by the Supreme Court; the bill was never assigned to committee.[4] However, the bill’s language was designed so as to prohibit the desecration of a flag when the intent was found to be a threat to public safety, the intention being that it would therefore not violate the First Amendment and not be declared unconstitutional.[5]

        Both co-sponsors of the bill voted against the most recent Flag Desecration Amendment of 2006.

        –Wiki: Flag Protection Act of 2005

        There lies one of HRC’s many [shurely shome mishtake — Ed]* achievements as US Senator from NY.

        * for fellow UK Private Eye fans

    4. local to oakland

      It might be amateurish but doesn’t have to be instigated or staged. East San Jose has a very large, poor, and middle class Latino population, including race based gangs. I haven’t heard of one recently, but we used to get race riots that could be mistaken for race wars inside California prisons. I don’t think this has anything to do with Sanders, just violent people responding to perceived threats of violence against them. Trump came to their hometown, and assembled people who already don’t like them… In spite of the very real racial tolerance, we don’t have to invent racial conflict here.

      1. Lambert Strether Post author

        I don’t think it has to do with Sanders either. But I’d like very much to have real data, and I’d like very much to be certain it’s not some sh*t-stirring operation masterminded by Roger Stone.

        If you followed Occupy, you know that there can be multiple players with conflicting agendas who nonetheless converge on violence.

        I want to know who the players are here. It would be nice if somebody from our famously free press did an interview. Or two.

        1. Rhondda

          San Jose “Mayor Sam Liccardo, a Democrat and Hillary Clinton supporter…” (saw it initially at ZH but that quote is from CBS in SF)

          Couldn’t help but notice how prominent is the big ol’ blue spot of San Jose on the Hillary contributions map above.

  10. Goyo Marquez

    FWIW On education jobs. Our local district, my wife teaches first grade, is experiencing a teacher shortage. 40 some people retired this year. They’re apparently accepting emergency credentials, something we haven’t seen since the late 90s, I’d guess. Gov. Brown, who has been doing a pretty good job up till the other day, has been increasing the budget for education even when he has to cut elsewhere. So I’d guess those are real jobs though their might be a seasonal component to those statistics. Schools need to lock new teachers in way in advance, before somebody else hires them.

  11. Goyo Marquez

    FWIW On education jobs. Our local district, my wife teaches first grade, is experiencing a teacher shortage. 40 some people retired this year. They’re apparently accepting emergency credentials, something we haven’t seen since the late 90s, I’d guess. Gov. Brown, who has been doing a pretty good job up till the other day, has been increasing the budget for education even when he has to cut elsewhere. So I’d guess those are real jobs though their might be a seasonal component to those statistics. Schools need to lock new teachers in way in advance, before somebody else hires them.

  12. Jonathan Holland Becnel

    From the comments section of the USA Today/Clinton article:

    Cheryl Mills (Hillary’s personal aide) answers to questions during her deposition:

    “I don’t recollect”————————-58 times.
    “I don’t know”—————————-180 times.
    “I don’t recall”—————————–89 times.
    “I don’t have a memory”—————-36 times.
    “I don’t have a specific memory”—–22 times
    “Objection” to questions—————284 times

    Too bad she couldn’t just sit there in silence.

    1. JustAnObserver

      That adds up to 669 evasions. IIRC her deposition was ~10 hrs. So a little over 1 evasion per minute. Doesn’t leave much time for any actual answers, does it.

    2. Pavel

      Re: the depositions… the plot just thickened regarding “the IT guy” and pleading the Fifth:

      [Judge] Sullivan issued an order Friday postponing the deposition indefinitely, but also instructing Pagliano’s attorneys to explain the Fifth Amendment assertion and to file a copy of Pagliano’s agreement with the Justice Department by Tuesday afternoon. The judge did not say explicitly whether the filing would be public, but most court filings are.

      “Counsel for Mr. Pagliano shall file a Memorandum of Law addressing the legal authority upon which Mr. Pagliano relies to assert his Fifth Amendment rights in this civil proceeding, including requisite details pertaining to the scope of Mr. Pagliano’s reported immunity agreement with the Government,” the judge wrote.

      The new battle over Pagliano’s immunity agreement and its potential public disclosure is an unhelpful development for Clinton’s presidential campaign. A flurry of discussion over the details of the deal now seems imminent, along with implications that someone involved may have committed a crime, although no one has been charged.

      –Politico: Judge postpones Clinton tech aide’s deposition

      A lot of people here (and on other sites) were wondering how Pagliano could plead the Fifth with an immunity agreement elsewhere and I guess the judge does too. Interesting.

        1. Pavel

          Well it’s a step up from “nothingburger”, which is the Hillbots’ term of choice over at Daily Kos and the other Dem watering holes. They called it that a year ago and predicted nobody would care after a few months. Little did they know…

  13. none

    …you can at least be sure that a Clinton presidency won’t lead to some enormous unforeseen cataclysm. With Trump, there’s no such guarantee

    The way I heard it is: a Trump is wild and unpredictable, like playing Russian Roulette with 3 bullets in the gun. Hillary is a known quantity who removes the uncertainty. She’s like playing with 6 bullets in the gun.

    1. Skippy

      Your not supposed to bet on Russian Roulette with your head next to the player[s…..

  14. Jeff W

    Sean King:

    …those who voted for her could get solace from the fact they were getting on board an exciting and popular campaign that was going to win…Democrats who supported Hillary weren’t holding their nose when they got on board with Obama. That’s exactly what Bernie supporters would be expected to do now. Voters of a more likable candidate who is beating Donald Trump handily in the polls will be expected to get behind a widely disliked candidate who is struggling…

    While that characterization—“a widely disliked candidate who is struggling”—is true, the implication that Sanders supporters want to “[get] on board an exciting and popular campaign that was going to win” reduces those supporters to merely being interested in “the horse race.” It seems obvious that those supporters have a real aversion to Clinton’s ideological stance and her view of politics. They don’t care about the horse race—if anything, that is part of what is wrong with politics or at least the reporting on politics.

    If one wants to attribute some non-rational basis for the steadfastness of Sanders’ supporters, that seems to me to have less to do with some “bandwagon effect” and more to do with loss aversion—that is, giving up on having, finally, a candidate who actually stands for things those supporters want. I’ve seen quite a few comments here on NC where people say “This is the first time in x years of voting, I can actually vote for a candidate I want.” Giving up on that opportunity is very difficult. Voting for a candidate who is and stands for, in a very real sense, the very opposite of what you feel you’ve lost is even harder.

  15. Benedict@Large

    If the object of feminism is that women can compete on an equal footing with men, and don’t need to be carried, why hasn’t anyone been making the case that Hillary Clinton is the most carried Presidential candidate in recent memory. Her husband has carried her, the DNC has carried her, the party has carried her, and the press has carried her. Not to mention the fact that whenever anything has gone wrong, Clinton always seeks to blame someone else, and carry the load for her.

    If the object of feminism is that women can compete on an equal footing with men, and don’t need to be carried, Hillary Clinton is not your candidate.

    1. willf

      If the object of feminism is that women can compete on an equal footing with men, and don’t need to be carried

      I thought the object of feminism was that everyone had equal rights?

  16. acmerecords

    We should consider the difference between Trump and the fascisti who attend his rallies.

    I was an attendee at the UIC/Chicago rally as a protestor and I can report that among the Trump supporters (generally white middle aged suburbanites) were scads of suburban youth (likely college age) who came to; 1. get drunk, 2. violently ‘pogo’ in groups of 15 to 20, 3. scream obscenities at any person of color, 4. threaten any person who was considered by them to be an immigrant…in short, it was abundantly clear to me that they came to the event to ‘get all riled up’ and to be given the go-a-head from the podium to unleash vitriol on anyone who appeared to oppose their authoritarian mindset. I, like many, blame Trump for knowing this and actively and tacitly encouraging this – but these kids came to make trouble – there is no question in my mind about that.

    This led me to understand that, while Trump may or may not be a fascist, trumpism is a form of modern fascism.

    By the way, the ChiCops (who I harbor no love for) did a great job separating the protestors from the rally attendees – It was when the rally goers exited directly into thousands of protestors that the violence (outside the arena) began – and you can’t blame the coppers for that

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      I don’t think white male middle aged suburbanites looking to get drunk are the same as fascists. I mean, Evanston isn’t exactly the Western Front, is it?

      The Clinton campaign is basically poisoning the well for any serious analysis: Racism, sexism, fascism — all “Any stick to beat a dog.” These are all real and terrible issues that deserve better treatment than being turned into soundbytes by Democratic strategists.

      1. Pavel

        Excellent point, Lambert — thank you.

        According to the Dems and MSM it now seems:

        * criticise Obama for anything: racist!
        * criticise Hillary for anything: sexist!
        * agree with anything Trump says or share one of his concerns: fascist!

        Methinks Orwell and perhaps Chomsky would have something to say about such blatant and crude manipulation of political language.

        1. acmerecords


          looks like your very own links for 06-04 reveal the limits of snide patronizing :

          “What happened was ALL Trump protestors were forced across the street from the San “Diego Convention Center and NO protestors were allowed near it. There was a HUGE police presence. This segregation of pro-Trumpers and anti-Trumpers continued all day until the Trump rally ended in the Convention Center – THEN a huge contingent of Trump supporters (mostly younger males) made their way unencumbered by the SDPD over across the train tracks and towards downtown and began harassing the anti-Trumpers who had been there peacefully all day – and I mean aggressively challenging them to fights, cursing, etc. All with the cops standing mere feet away from them with their backs turned.”

          Golly-gosh, just like in Chicago as I personally witnessed.

          I know you are certain that ‘smarter’ people realize this is all a hillary planted sound bite programmed to hobble ‘analysis’

          In a bed-sit far away from the world most live in it is simple (minded) to describe eye-witness accounts as ‘poisoning the well’ with ‘crude’ ‘language manipulation’

          sorry to report comrades, aint no Ubers driving bed-sit confined self-described ‘radicals’ to the revolution.

          I know y’all got better things to do (like sling around pejoratives as if that stands as some type of analysis) but the folks I am proud to live with prefer to stand up rather than shut up.

      2. acmerecords

        I was actually referring to the dupage county youth, you will see upon a closer reading of my comment

        and I guess it’s really not like WWII

        as they say, ‘it can’t happen here’

  17. steelhead23

    Nixonian palace guard now protects Hillary

    So far, it appears that Hillary has been more effective in keeping her acolytes in line. To those now on Clinton’s staff that “can’t remember”, you should know that John Ehrlichman spent 18 months in the slam, while John Dean, who sang like a canary, wrote books. First one to the prosecutor’s office usually wins.

  18. Stephanie

    Retail: “[C]omments about the scourge of late March and April [sales] have come from more than a dozen [apparel] retailers” [The Fashion Law]. “But there was no macro slump, and no disaster — just deep discounting. … It’s time for retailers to stop blaming a weak consumer for their sales slump. It’s true they face industry-wide challenges such as online retailing and consumer preferences. But they need to realize that the way they are fighting back — by offering holiday-like promotions and hoping for the best — is hurting them even more.”

    The last three years have been the first in my adult life in which I could regularly afford to buy new (rather than second-hand) clothing, but mostly I don’t. Unless something has become too ripped or stained to wear to work, I don’t bother looking, because even aside from the sizing inconsistencies and terrible quality at most stores in my price range, the clothes on offer are just fugly. I never thought I would get to a point at which I wouldn’t wish I had money to buy that one gorgeous thing, but I have, because there are no more gorgeous things, just festival fringe and rubber-ducky themed cardboard boxes disguised as sweaters. In my life, here are maybe two occasions every year in which either would be appropriate, so from a budget stand-point neither is an option, and certainly not at full price.

    I can’tell imagine I’m alone in this. From what I’ve read, both J. Crew and Banana Republic saw sales slide a few years ago as they flirted with the ironic statement-piece look, and perhaps now that it’s penetrated lower-end stores they are suffering the same fate? Even people with lots more money than I have do not have style-icon lifestyles, and even less so the further down the ladder you go. I’m not saying it’s the only reason, but as consumers have less to spend, maybe it would be a good idea to offer something they might actually consider paying all the money for right away, IF it fits and IF the seams actually hold once they try it on.

    1. grayslady

      I learned how to sew when I was 16 and have been grateful ever since. There were a few years, back in the late 1970s and early 1980s, when attractive and sturdy clothing was manufactured. Since then, I haven’t seen anything in stores I’d like to buy. Of course, the stores I used to patronize–independent stores with interesting merchandise–have all but disappeared.

    2. optimader

      I have heard this across the board from women I know. Well made clothing is being replaced with the ubiquitous imported junk that is essentially the same from store to store Seems like a business opportunity for local, bespoke tailoring for women.

  19. Jack

    I guess all of you Hillary haters would rather Trump appoint the next 3 justices to the court… Surprising considering how much the court has disenfranchised the poor and minorities in this country and will do so even more forcefully with any on the list Trump produced…

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      If the Democrat Party, after 2000, had gone all out for voter registration as a normal party function year-round, and fought the Republican voter ID laws tooth and nail, the Court would would be a minor player on this issue. Even today, they have or could make the budge to simply purchase people voter IDs.

      Of course, the Democrats don’t do any of these things, because that would have meant too many proles and poors in their electorate, and if they catered to them, the donor class wouldn’t be happy.

      So please don’t straw man on the Court; it’s no substitute for genuine political power.

      1. Feeling the bern in WI

        Amen. Exactly the point I keep trying to advance to dems in WI. Stop whining and DO something. Couldn’t get any traction on building a permanent program to register voters this spring. So very sad.

    2. JCC

      I’ve heard this argument once too often… it seems to me that her support of more ME wars and her support of the TPP, TIISA, and the TTIP “trade” agreements will economically disenfranchise far more people, both foreign and domestic, than a couple of SCJs.

      Ms Clinton’s support of the above and more, her undying support for the economically devastating ACA along with her and her husband’s attempts to privatize and/or means test S.S. would also be devastating.

      Not to mention the fact that serious national scandals seem to follow the Clintons in general wherever they go and wherever they are, from Whitewater to the Clinton Foundation. This will continue, as usual, I’m sure. They make the NY State Senate and Assembly Leaders look like saints.

      All in all Supreme Court Justice appointees seem to me to be a relatively minor issue considering the corruption and arrogance that oozes off these people.

  20. ewmayer

    Re. Matt Yglesias, professional shillbot: …you can at least be sure that a Clinton presidency won’t lead to some enormous unforeseen cataclysm. — Right, a Clinton presidency is far more likely lead to some enormous entirely-foreseeable cataclysm. (But I suspect that is not the inference MattY intends his readers to draw.)

    Aside: Good news! As of 1 Jun, when I try to indulge my daily voyeuristic peek at the inanity-fest that is ZeroHedge, my FF browser shows a set of three single-character-wide text columns, somewhat reminiscent of the scrolling screens of mystery text in The Matrix. So roughly 5 minutes per day – roughly what it taks to scan 24 hours’ worth of ZH headlines and get a few chuckles out of it – freed up for other amusements.

  21. Plenue

    “To be fair, the smaller nuclear weapons that Obama has developed might give Clinton the chance to press the button without creating an actual cataclysm.”

    Soviet nuclear doctrine was that any use of nukes by the enemy was to be met with a full-scale retaliation. If they haven’t fundamentally changed their thinking, and if the US still believes it can gradually escalate starting with ‘tactical nukes’, we’re all in for a world of hurt. Don’t mistake this for any kind of love of Putin, but that man is a cool operator who is consistently restrained in his actions. His tolerance may genuinely be the only thing that saves us in the end, given the gang of rabid jackals running Western policy. Kind of like the reverse of when the only thing stopping Obama and his ‘Grand Bargain’ was the incoherent stubborn hate of the Tea Party types for the Muslim Atheist Kenyan.

    Can someone stop the planet? I want to get off!

  22. optimader

    file under: how unions shoot themselves in the head -Chicago Sheet Metal Workers style

    Many HVAC construction projects in and around Chicago may stop with Sheet Metal Workers Local 73 on strike….
    The association said its most recent offer was a three-year contract with 3 percent annual raises that would have brought journeyman wages up to $81.78 per hour.

    $81.78 not enough for a journeyman hanging hvac ductwork? My goodness, how can they afford the good peanut butter! HAHAHA.

      1. optimader

        As I plays out I think this will more likely result in local architects specifying more pre-engineered ductwork systems to be produced in Tennessee with the local knock-on effect of rendering local contractor man-hours and true trade craftwork out of the job .

        You can always find a subgroup of people (eg:C-suit) that are egregiously overcompensated, but in the end what is a craft really worth compared to other crafts/professions?
        To me , a journeyman duct worker just isn’t worth more than three RNs or a Mechanical Engineer or even the Construction Engineer running the jobs (in the same market.)!!

        In the Chicago the construction engineer running the job is ~$100k

        So no, I don’t subscribe to : From each according to his abilities, to each according to his needs. there is nothing special about the spending habits of sheet metal workers relative to anyone else that works for a living in Chicago.
        in the end this strangles the golden goose for trademen that actually retain the real trade skills because it forces workarounds rendering skills out of the local talent pool.

        1. Skippy

          It really does not matter Opti… as labour is getting increasingly made redundant… their all just trying to get the last slice of pie before its all gone…

          Disheveled Marsupial…. lmmao developers and architects are wildly over payed… Buff and Hensman in Calif… ahh the good old days…

        2. Left in Wisconsin

          Well, either the 2 sides were not that far apart or the Sheet Metalworkers caved.

          AS OF 6/3/16 AT 4PM
          A tentative agreement between SMACNA Greater Chicago and SMART, Local #73 has been reached.


          My guess is that $81/hour figure is fully loaded with benefits and who knows how mgt calculates them. (The link you posted was to a mgt newsletter.) When I was a union hack, we were always having to push back against mgt inflating the cost of health care and other fringes and including sunk costs for retirees in the so-called “hourly wage.”

    1. Pat

      I’m pretty sure that wage cite includes benefits, something you won’t see when you get a wage quote for management. Many people would be amazed at what their hourly ‘wage’ is if the benefits are included especially considering health care premiums. IOW, if that journeyman isn’t seeing a hourly figure at least twenty dollars an hour less in his gross wages, I’d be shocked.

      And my question is whether there is some fabrication in there? That would involve more skill than just installation.

  23. marym

    An Open Letter from Jill Stein to California Voters

    At this historic moment, as voters reject the Clinton and Trump campaigns with record high levels of dislike and mistrust, I ask not just for your vote for me, but also for your vote for Bernie. These votes are powerfully synergistic as we build an historic grassroots movement and a political vehicle to carry it forward.

    Come out on June 7 and vote for me, Jill Stein, if you are registered Green, and for Bernie Sanders if you are Democratic or “no party preference”.

  24. dk

    “Clinton running phone banks in Spanish, Mandarin, Korean, Cantonese, Vietnamese and Tagalog”

    That’s good for a 5-8 point bump over polling in CA.

    1. dk

      Actually 5-8 is an overestimate. Statewide it’s more like 2%-3%. Still, it’s a polling blind-spot.

  25. Waldenpond

    New CA state numbers…. reports that 40% of undeclared voter ballots submitted wanted to vote for Sanders but didn’t know how. They did not contact their election board as required to request a D ballot (if vote by mail) or not turn in the mail ballot and vote in person. I’ll be working on a canvassing team this weekend and am signed up to give rides on Tuesday.

    I’m sick and tired how corrupt our electoral system is. Can’t wait to be unregistered as a D.

      1. Waldenpond

        Local news, sorry. I’ll check their websites and see if I can find where they got the data.

      2. Waldenpond

        Our local news was incorrect but the numbers coincide with an earlier report that only 15% had requested D ballots….


        [Exit polling of independent, vote-by-mail voters is showing that 40 percent wanted to vote for a Democratic presidential candidate, but only 15 percent requested a Democratic ballot, Political Data, Inc. Vice President Paul Mitchell said.

        “They just didn’t have the Democratic candidates on their ballot and didn’t know how to get them, get the right ballot or get their ballot replaced,” Mitchell said.]

        [Of the voters surveyed who said they wanted a Democratic ballot rather than an NPP ballot, 58 percent said they would have voted for Sanders and 37 percent said they would have voted for Clinton, Mitchell said.

        On Wednesday, a judge rejected a lawsuit by Sanders supporters who argued that rules for the state’s independent voters are unclear. The suit sought more time to register voters before the critical June 7 primary.]

        I’m too tired to look at current registrations for npp to see what the projection of 15% with at 58/37 split would do. I don’t even know if 40% is the typical participation rate for the presidential primary.

    1. Pat

      Between that and the provisional ballot report we heard about the other day, I think the ‘system’ may win this one for Clinton. God help this country. If they existed.

      (For the record both probable nominees are disasters for this country. There is no Lesser only Evil. Letting go of hope of avoiding disaster is hard…)

  26. Cry Shop

    “War is Good Business, Invest Your Son,” poster by Seymour Chwast (1968) (© Seymour Chwast)

    A 5,000-year chronicle of human violence is the goal of illustrator Seymour Chwast’s new book project, which follows his almost six-decades of antiwar art. Seymour Chwast at War with War: An Illustrated Timeline of 5,000 Years of Conquests, Invasions, and Terrorist Attacks

    I thought about Bill Clinton when he got side tracked and his 2 minute get out the vote turned into a half-hour harangue of Amy Goodman: “Wanting approval … is a kind of aggression.”

  27. bdy

    The baby nukes scare me. There’s an implicit declaration of “heads up world we can actually use these . . . “

  28. Willnadauld

    Can someone start a collection to pay the FBI or whomever for Hillary’s indictment? How would a person start such a movement? This was actually my 8 year olds idea during our dinner conversation last night. Seems rational to our family.

  29. Waldenpond

    [[On “Education and Health Care Services,” how much of that is delivery of real services to citizens, and how much is administration? Readers?]]

    In CA some of that could be hiring staff for summer programs. Now that schools out, the kids shift over to parks and rec/Boys and Girls Clubs.

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