Links 6/29/16

Dems Refuse to Back GOP Zika Bill that Attacks Women, Vets, Obamacare, and Clean Water Common Dreams

Healthcare workers prioritize helping people over information security (disaster ensues) Boing Boing


Brexit live Financial Times

The truth behind the Labour coup, when it really began and who manufactured it (EXCLUSIVE) The Canary (Gabriel U)

What Brexit Means For Taxes, Trade, The Auto Industry And More Lee Sheppard, Forbes

Brexit, Corbyn and the coup YouTube (martha r)

Dublin Prepares for a Brexit Boom -Daily Beast (resilc)

The Collapse of the Liberal World Order Foreign Policy (resilc). Pearl clutching.

The Neoliberal Prison: Brexit Hysteria and the Liberal Mind Counterpunch (resilc)

The Spanish election outcome: Brussels will be happy Defend Democracy


Intel Vets Call ‘Dissent Memo’ on Syria ‘Reckless’ Antiwar (resilc)

Turkey-Israel deal leaves Gaza siege intact Electronic Intifada (furzy)

DNC Platform Leaves Door Open for No-Fly Zone in Syria, Refuses to Call for End to Israeli Occupation Intercept (resilc)

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

Hacker Advertises Slew of Alleged Healthcare Organization Records Motherboard

Facebook Backtracks, Now Says It Is Not Using Your Phone’s Location To Suggest Friends Slashdot

Imperial Collapse Watch

Trading Places: Neocons and Cockroaches Common Dreams (furzy)

CIA Arms For Syria Sold by Jordan Spies on Black Market For Terrorists Juan Cole (resic)

The Thucydides Claptrap Washington Monthly (resilc)


Bernie Sanders: Democrats Need to Wake Up New York Times (Steve C)

“I’ll disrespectfully abstain”: Kossacks_for_Sanders Reddit (martha r)

The Clinton Campaign Is Obstructing Change to the Democratic Platform Politico

The First Sanders Democrat Just Won Her Congressional Primary USUncut. A bit of an exaggeration, since Teachout was a force before Sanders became a national force.

Hillary Clinton’s Initiative on Technology & Innovation Hillary Clinton. Kevin F: “The internet of shit gets a strong endorsement. Toilets that spy on you and make your health premiums go up. Awesome!”

Hillary Clinton Offers Student Debt Deferral to Those Who Need it Most: Startup-Launching Americans Gawker (resilc). This is not a joke. But it comes off like one.

Full transcript: Donald Trump’s jobs plan speech Politico

Trump Just Drove a Truck Through Hole DNC Platform Panel Left in Clinton’s TPP Promise Common Dreams

Donald Trump targets ‘globalism’ as job-killer USA Today (resilc)

What Trump Gets Right on Immigration American Conservative

Conventional Wisdom: Was Firing His Campaign Manager A Turning Point For Trump? FiveThirtyEight (resilc). The speech would suggest yes.

The Way to Make America Great Again Is to Be More Like Scandinavia Vice (resilc)

Republicans’ Health-Care Plan: Not Much Care, Not Much Plan Bloomberg (resilc)

U.S. Supreme Court to weigh Miami predatory lending lawsuit Reuters (EM)

Supreme Court agrees to review ATM fee antitrust lawsuit Reuters (EM)

Taxes: Fund the IRS! Democracy Journal (furzy)

Obama Approved Over 1.5k Gulf Offshore Fracking Permits: Media Ignored It Steve Horn

Homeschooled Kids Waiting to be Raptured Still Don’t Have To Learn Anything, Texas Supreme Court Rules Gawker (resilc)

Mississippi lawmaker to mother seeking help: Buy kid’s meds yourself Chicago Tribune

The One Chart That Shows Why Oil Prices Have To Keep Rising v.The Oil Price Rebound Will Be Brief – Goldman Sachs OilPrice

Guillotine Watch

Seattle has a food truck for dogs Boing Boing (resilc)

A Brief, Sticky History of Tarring and Feathering Mental Floss. Resilc: “Bring this back starting with David Brooks.”

Class Warfare

Who got rich off the student debt crisis Reveal

Return on Investment’: The Narrow, Short-Sighted Finance Concept That Has Taken Over Society Atlantic (resilc)

Silicon Valley geeks plan to reinvent our cities TreeHugger. Resilc: “Hold on to your wallet.”

Antidote du jour. Margarita: “Driving in north-eastern Slovakia to the ancestral village, we came across several of these nests. Storks seem to like nesting high above all, on top of electric poles. So local folk started building them their own “electric” poles. This one is near our house.”

bocian links

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. low integer

    Hello reality-based community. I want to share(*) two thought provoking quotes from a somewhat obscure book I just started reading. IMO the first quote elegantly explains something I, and I expect many others, intuitively understood yet until now could not concisely describe.

    “Julius wanted to draw a distinction between ‘closed’ and ‘open’ conceptual systems. As he outlines the distinction, an ‘open’ system is open to reasoning and evidence, and open to modification, even to refutation, in the light of that reasoning or evidence. Awkward facts, inconvenient arguments and evidence have to be listened to, and answered. A ‘closed’ system, by contrast, does not answer inconvenient reasoning and evidence; it explains them, usually as attacks on itself. The ‘closed system’ purports to explain why the outsiders are attacking it, and why it would be out of place to listen to them seriously or to reason with them. So no fact, no evidence, no argument can do any damage to a ‘closed system’; on the contrary, they all confirm and elaborate the truth of it.”
    -Alan Tapper’s preface to Values and Evaluations by Julius Kovesi

    “Our tendency to maintain habits of thought after we have abandoned the premisses on which they were based, guides much of our thought today”
    -Jean-Francois Revel (cited in Values and Evaluations)

    (*)It is so nice to have a place like NC to share these kinds of things. Thank y’all.

    1. jgordon

      As for reality based, that is an ongoing process. I have noticed a definite shift away from the more wild-eyed enthusiasm for various flavors of hopeful monetary and political gimmickry here among the community towards a more accurate grasp of the situation, which is of course disintegration and collapse. Now when the community finally comes to the general consensus that the best investment strategies for the future involve solar panels, rabbit hutches and ammo I would say that they finally arrived. But that seems a bit off yet. There still haven’t been enough doses of disillusionment to satisfy everyone yet. But not to worry; it’s coming!

      1. Synoia

        the best investment strategies for the future involve solar panels, rabbit hutches and ammo

        You omitted the required chicken coops, as proposed by Bill Gates.

        I suppose Bill though he was being helpful in proposing chicken coops for the poor, but I wonder at his apparent worldview that the only poor which exist are the rural poor, and that there are no urban poor.

        “Out of Touch” is the best I can say for Mr Gates. On a positive note, Bill, I suggest that he starts a voyage of studying to begin to understand what he does no know. How about spending one year in the Lagos, Nigeria slums to broaden your “worldview,” followed by a second year in a poor Mississippi community??

    2. Punta Pete

      The definition of a “closed system” is also a perfect description of the “science” of economics.

      1. low integer

        Yep. In my opinion until the distinction between ‘open’ and ‘closed’ conceptual systems is fundamentally understood and integrated into the social conciousness, resulting in a wholesale rejection of ‘closed’ conceptual systems, there will be no end to the swirling mess of lies, opacity of intent, and emotional manipulation that make up post-truth politics and economics.

        1. Pat

          Unfortunately, I think it is already being adjusted and co-opted.Tony Blair recently said he doesn’t think of political viewpoints in terms of left and right, but close-minded and open-minded.
          I realize the difference, and the utter bullshit of Blair’s statement. Still I think this is just the newest liberal/progressive/neoliberal bait and switch of term definition.

          1. Bev

            Voting machines without evidence are a closed system, as are scanning and tabulating machines. Time to open up the system to prove our democracy.

            Important update:
            via email from

            An update on the lawsuit…

            Thanks for the connection. Cliff Arnebeck is still filing the lawsuit, so while the delay is understandably of concern to all of us, do remain hopeful! We will be releasing breaking news including timely evidence from poll analyst, John Rice, who will give millions of people the assurance they need to know that Bernie has, in fact, won the Presidential Primary, at our event (details below), this coming Thursday.

            We would love to meet you, but if you can’t attend in person, please view the live stream at the following web address: or

            EVENT ANNOUNCEMENT: The 2016 California Primary: A Disturbing Situation
            Come join us at the Corte Madera Best Western: 56 Madera Blvd, Corte Madera, CA 94925 for an update on the condition of the California Primary.

            Event begins at 6:30 pm, Thursday, June 30th with attorneys at law Bill Simpich and Ida Martinac, San Diego election confusion witness, Marie Johnson, poll analyst, John Rice and election integrity activists, Lori Grace and Emily Levy.

            Please check for a complete description of the event and register on the Sunrise Center site so we can be sure to save you a seat. Please also sign up to our Sunrise Center mailing list so that you can be sure to receive future announcements regarding the issue of election integrity.

            Thank you,

          2. low integer

            Good point. Ironically, definitional control seems to be the mechanism with which ‘closed’ political and economic schools of thought deflect accusations that they are such, and thus maintain an outward appearance of being ‘open’.

  2. JTMcPhee

    So I guess the answer to the “problem” of inventive health care workers (not all of whom are actually “saving lives” or even providing “care,” unfortunately, whatever the assumptions say, tho9ugh so many of us nursie types and even a lot of docs and techs do what they can) doing all those creative work-a rounds past the faux-“security” and forced-pattern data entry screens in all those medical treatment settings, is, wait for it,

    BIOMETRICS, am I right?

    No more styrofoam cups to defeat proximity sensors, no sticky notes with passwords all over them. Just a chip embedded in the nurse or other “provider,” or retina or ear-whorl or whatever scanned. What could possibly go wrong?

    Fokking Tower of Babel —

    Now the whole world had one language and a common speech. 2 As people moved eastward,[a] they found a plain in Shinar[b] and settled there.

    3 They said to each other, “Come, let’s make bricks and bake them thoroughly.” They used brick instead of stone, and tar for mortar. 4 Then they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city, with a tower that reaches to the heavens, so that we may make a name for ourselves; otherwise we will be scattered over the face of the whole earth.”

    5 But the Lord came down to see the city and the tower the people were building. 6 The Lord said, “If as one people speaking the same language they have begun to do this, then nothing they plan to do will be impossible for them. 7 Come, let us go down and confuse their language so they will not understand each other.”

    8 So the Lord scattered them from there over all the earth, and they stopped building the city. 9 That is why it was called Babel[c]—because there the Lord confused the language of the whole world. From there the Lord scattered them over the face of the whole earth. Genesis 11, NIV

    Yet the urge to create a common language (Code) and build the One Tower to reach up to Heaven is strong in this species…

  3. Roger Smith

    Hillary Clinton Offers Student Debt Deferral to Those Who Need it Most: Startup-Launching Americans

    Great! I startup my car every morning! I am pretty successful with the startup as well, going on 10 years! Now defer my massive debt Hillary.

    Pathetic–get her out of here!

    1. Jim Haygood

      If a startup is defined as, say, registering an LLC, funding it with $10,000, and declaring a corporate objective that meets the new requirements, then startup LLCs will pop up like mushrooms.

      Hillary’s instincts hark back to the pre-Reagan era, when marginal tax rates were high, but tax shelters were plentiful: film making partnerships; horse breeding partnerships; oil & gas drilling partnerships — anything that produced up-front expense and depreciation write-offs, with profits (if any) deferred to several years out.

      This was an old, byzantine, opaque approach, which unproductively channeled capital into tax-favored areas, while starving less-favored investments (such as infrastructure). Take a look at photos of shabby street scenes in the 1970s (Times Square, or anywhere) and you’ll see the sad results.

      Running the tax code like a Third World bazaar is ideal for fixers like the Clintons, however. They thrive on offering relief — for a price — in the form of amendments slipped into final conference committee meetings at 3am and accepted with no one even reading them.

      Transparency? “Forget it, Jake — it’s Clintonville.”

      1. Roger Smith

        Thanks for the historical info!

        channeled capital into tax-favored areas, while starving less-favored investments (such as infrastructure)

        This works perfectly with our higher education model as well. “Be who you want to be!” Unless who you want to be is not the right kind of learned individual, then tough luck! You should have chosen better… like the tech start up kids!

    2. Katniss Everdeen

      Didn’t quite understand the description of the startup “Washboard” as a “laundry quarter-delivery app,” so I clicked the link.

      Apparently they charged $27 monthly to deliver $20 worth of quarters for use at the laundromat. (Alas, “Washboard” is no more.}

      Sounds like the kind of “business” that would be right up clinton’s alley.

      PS. I wonder how much they would have charged if quarters were still made of actual silver.

      1. Roger Smith

        That reminds me of a service I heard of once. You could call them at (supposedly) any time and they would pick up and deliver snacks to your location.

        Also I recently heard of new smart refrigerators that allow you to talk Amazon orders for groceries you might need (detergent, etc…). Now we can all spend more time working longer hours for lower wages.

        I am eagerly awaiting the neoliberal solution for life. At this rate we will have the service class, who actually have to do the work to make these things convenient for others, and the stasis class, who are constantly plugged into a virtual reality rig where they can watch the Real Housewives in 4K 3D all day long.

        1. Jonathan Holland Becnel

          Speak for yourself! I’m watching Game of Thrones on my ULTRA 4K 3D TV!

          1. JustAnObserver

            Why buy the expensive TV when you can just look a few 1000 miles west to the post-Brexit UK politics for a real life, real time, GoT ?

      2. Kokuanani

        For a very long time I have imagined a service/business I could provide to busy professionals: I would go on vacation for them. They would pay, of course, but I’d travel, take pictures, write reviews, send postcards/e-mails to friends & family, and generally have the great Vacation they were too busy or essential to take.

        Always seemed like a winner to me.

      3. low integer

        This ‘[cr]app’ is a good example what you get when you cross technological capability with a sheer lack of creativity and imagination.

    3. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Only Americans.

      If you are not a citizen – and that’s a high wall to climb over – tough luck.

  4. hreik

    Escape tunnel is found at Holocaust killing site in Vilnius.

    A team of archaeologists and mapmakers say they have uncovered a forgotten tunnel that 80 Jews dug largely by hand as they tried to escape from a Nazi extermination site in Lithuania about 70 years ago. The Lithuanian site, Ponar, holds mass burial pits and graves where up to 100,000 people were killed and their bodies dumped or burned during the Holocaust.

    For months, the Jewish prisoners dug up and burned bodies. One account tells of a man who identified his wife and two sisters among the corpses. The group knew that once their job was finished, they, too, would be executed, so they developed an escape plan.

    About half of the group spent 76 days digging a tunnel in their holding pit by hand and with spoons they found among the bodies. On April 15, 1944 — the last night of Passover when they knew the night would be darkest — the brigade crawled through the two-foot-square tunnel entrance and through to the forest.

    The noise alerted the guards, who pursued the prisoners with guns and dogs. Of the 80, 12 managed to escape; 11 of them survived the war and went on to tell their stories, according to the researchers.

    1. Dave

      Why are you posting this here?

      Do you want us to buy some Israel Bonds?

      What is your purpose? Is this somehow connected to Hillary Clinton’s support of Israel? I don’t get it. Discuss.

      1. Vatch

        History doesn’t need to be directly relevant to current events. There’s value in remembering details associated with horrid mass crimes, whether the perpetrators were working for Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Pol Pot, Enver Pasha, Leopold II of Belgium, or someone else.

        1. hunkerdown

          It’s better if it’s relevant to the present discussion or active perma-thread, and it’s probably better if it’s not in support of an ideology running a permanent war against their dead ancestors’ rivals who were there first and a permanent PR campaign to browbeat and starve dissenters outside the oparea.

          Too bad Bernie’s people didn’t squeeze something about Jerusalem being the capitol of the US into the Democrat Clientele Party platform.

          1. Vatch

            This is the Links page, where current articles are welcome, and HReik’s comment is perfectly appropriate.

            Your snark against Sanders is perplexing. Clinton and her supporters, plus most of the Republicans, are the ones who are obsequious towards Israel. Sanders has been quite critical of Israeli policies.

            1. hunkerdown

              Fair point. Mass crime and fighting it didn’t quite connect to the masthead for me until it was pointed out (thanks Brooklin). My apologies.

              I want, and arguably the Democrat Party wants, that the platform reflect what the Democrat Party is all about and what its constituents want. /s Since the Democrat Party decided in their 2012 platform, ignoring the floor, to name Jerusalem as the capitol of Israel (strangely having forgotten about Tel Aviv and Israeli sovereignty?), takes money and notes from Zionist entertainment moguls, and is generally progressive in all things, it seems only natural that a straight-up guy like Bernie would want the Party to be honest.

            2. hunkerdown

              Given the God-and-Jerusalem floor vote having been pointedly disregarded at the 2012 DNC, I would just like the platform to reflect actual Democrat Party Inc. policy at the end of the day.

              Point taken and conceded on Links being for links, and apologies extended to any and all for having groused about it. Election derangement syndrome is about right…

          2. Brooklin Bridge

            Note that Hreik’s comment is outermost (meaning it is not a sub-comment) so it shouldn’t have to conform to any particular subject. As Vatch says, mass crimes are valid and important as a topic. Also, the story of an amazing and costly escape from a prison camp in Nazi Germany 70 + years ago doesn’t have anything to do with Israel today or with Israel’s current policies and/or ideologies.

            1. hunkerdown

              Point taken. I didn’t connect the mass crime angle to the masthead until you pointed it out. Thank you.

              1. Brooklin Bridge

                No sweat, Hunkerdown. I enjoy your comments and didn’t mean to be critical. Mostly wanted to make the point about outer most comments.

          3. Elliot

            Good grief. It’s possible to note historical acts that Jews did without it being “in support of an ideology running a permanent war” blah blah blah.

            It’s also possible to read articles about the history of the Holocaust without having to complain about someone supporting the Jews And Their Ideology.

            I read that article this morning on another site and just marvelled at the amazing human will to live, in impossible circumstances, and thought about digging a tunnel that far with spoons and bare hands…I come from a mining family, that feat is astounding to me.

            It is, you know, possible to have compassion on both the plight of present day Palestinians, and the Jews who were nearly wiped out by Hitler.

      2. Skip Intro

        Survival tips like this may be all too relevant before long.
        1) Always carry some spoons
        2) Muffle them when escaping
        3) Bring doggie snacks
        4) invite some slow people

  5. Escher

    You know what encourages entrepreneurship? Being able to declare bankruptcy if things go south and start over.

    Surely Hillary will be for removing the student loan exemption from the Bankruptcy Act, then.

  6. paul

    The Canary piece on that hell’s broth of spoilt princes and propoganda mongers is excellent.
    These people will not rest until the overton window is an arrow slit.
    The fact that they have to resort to these desperate and crazy antics shows that they have nothing on Jeremy to bring him down.
    If he resigns, it will be a very dark day indeed.

    Step forward,Angela Eagle, you shall be queen for a day,you will be lauded for your charisma,competence and your service to both red and blue tories.

  7. someone

    1. Blairites lose the 2 elections
    2. Cameron calls for a referendum to solidify his party support
    3. Labor base votes in Corbyn
    4. Cameron decides to be neutral during referendum, Corbyn campaigns for in
    5. Referendum fails
    6. ???
    7. Cameron and labor old guard blame Corbyn for out vote winning

    I guess this must make sense to someone…

    1. paul

      Written by nafeez ahmed, who is pretty solid.
      Solid enough to get the boot from the guardian last year.

      It still gets the sports results right, I suppose.

  8. ChiGal

    Shit! Maybe the healthcare organization hack explains why yesterday in my email there was something from Pandora asking me to change password stating no breach of my Pandora acct but that my same user name was just posted in a bunch of hacked data online ? .

    I wasn’t sure it was really Pandora so wrote back asking them to direct me as to the who, what, wheres before I did anything.

    Guess now I know it’s legit. Even though I myself do no banking online, never enter debit card or bank acct #s on my cell phone…

    What to do?

    1. ChiGal

      Got a reply from Pandora. It was that eminently useless site LinkedIn.

      Once I realized they were autogenerating emails purportedly from colleagues requesting me to connect on their site right after I had had offsite email/cell contact with them I quit using it but never bothered to delete profile. Which I will do now.

      Good news is unlike an employer they don’t have my SSN. Course I could still be in the linked hack, if the “Midwest” health care company is in Chicago.

      1. Dave

        You don’t get it. Whenever a non-legal agency, unlike the bank or the IRS, asks you for your social security number, you should definitely offer it to them, with a few numbers scrambled around of course. Same with your birthday, your address, your place of business etc.

        Enough contamination and the databases become useless.
        Magazine subscription cards are another opportunity to help clog and contaminate databases. Plus “you” can “subscribe” to offending rags like the NYT and Washington Post. “Bill me please”.

      2. oh

        That noxius site LinkedIn kept pestering me that my contacts (where did they steal the list?), wanted me to be on LinkedIn. I ignored it and finally they stopped sending me those e-mail. I wonder if Google (gmail) shares the list? Now Google’s trying to get people’s license plate nos. from city databases by “helping” to monitor parking spots. Whatever they do is aimed at collecting more data on people.

    2. Ranger Rick

      The short answer is change your passwords. Everyone who used LinkedIn before 2013 has their password up on the Internet, linked to the email address used to register for the site. If you reused that password anywhere else, change that password. Better yet, if you used that email to register anywhere else, change that password.

      I’m waiting for the class-action lawsuit against Microsoft. This hack, and the delay in announcing it, was criminally irresponsible.

  9. Jim Haygood

    Another ddos attack today?

    Prolly Elisabeth “SacaJIVEwea” Warren’s revenge for the rude things commenters have been saying about her.

    The straw bosses of the Democrat plantation don’t take kindly to escaped serfs.

        1. jrs

          Nah the column reads like headline writers wrote whatever would grab eyeballs. The headline seems to have little to do with the column which is way more mundane. Sure I could quibble with the column, but gee it’s mundane.

      1. Katniss Everdeen

        In an interview yesterday morning on msnbs, tony blair made several references to “insurgent populists” and “populist insurgency.”

        Sounded like a pit stop on the way to populist “terrorism” with all the associated implications.

      2. ambrit

        On my computer the site has been going in and out of Error 521 for an hour now. Looks like a Dreaded DDoS to me also.

        1. crittermom

          Mine has been affected, as well, but is back up now (obviously), except I’m getting “error 524”, I think.

      3. Roger Smith

        Same here, though I have noticed that it will save comments I type even if it loads the Error page after submitting.

        1. Oregoncharles

          Yes, I saw an odd detour notice when I clicked in; don’t remember the text, but it was probably NC’s defenses – vetting the IP, perhaps?
          Anyway, seems to be working now (12:47 PACIFIC time – add 3 hrs).

        2. hunkerdown

          Which, speculating irresponsibly without reference to the access_log, might be how they’re doing it.

    1. RabidGandhi

      We should all agree to an alternative rendezvous in the event of a long term shutdown. I propose the comments section of TPM.

      1. oliverks

        I was getting weird error messages as well this morning. I am not sure if it was a DDS, it almost seemed like someone was trying to intercept traffic. But I didn’t spend a bunch of time trying to analyze it.

  10. Katniss Everdeen

    Gotta go all the way to Breitbart to find mention of this quote from Trump’s speech yesterday:

    Trump then issued a challenge to the media: “If the media doesn’t believe me, I have a challenge for you. Ask Hillary Clinton if she is willing to withdraw from the TPP her first day in office and unconditionally rule out its passage in any form.”

    But it seems that the elusive “bipartisanship” we have all been seeking may have finally been achieved, as the US chamber of commerce and that lion of big labor richard trumka have united on the twitter to condemn Trump’s stance on “free trade.”

    Whole lotta “swimming naked” goin’ on out there.

  11. Take the Fork

    Thucydides Trap Claptrap

    Graham Allison, former Dean of Harvard University’s Kennedy School, calls this inevitability of conflict the “Thucydides Trap,” after the Greek historian who chronicled the Peloponnesian War. Writing for the Atlantic, Allison cites Thucydides in likening modern U.S.-China tensions to that between ancient Sparta and Athens: “[T]he rise of Athens, and the fear that this inspired in Sparta, that made war inevitable.”

    The older I get, the more I am convinced that foreign policy academics and experts are worse than useless. Which puts them in precisely the same category as contemporary economists. One who has failed to do anything other than read and write books should ever be allowed to teach, preach or decide policy.

    The US is not, and has never been, classical Athens. Conscripting Thucydides to threatmonger and justify boneheaded neoconliberal expeditions is ridiculous. It only appeals to armchair hoplites like Kagan, Inc and those they have bamboozled. It is done not so much to conceive strategy, but to give some sort of historical sanctification to policies that have already been decided upon.

    No one would but an idiot or an ideologue employs single-source support for an argument. And Thucydides might well have been wrong: many respected classicists have argued that it was Corinthian fear and ambition that actually led to the conflict.

    1. Plenue

      My copy of the History of the Peloponnesian War has an introduction that explicitly says that Thucydides himself fails to actually prove his case that war was inevitable. The supposed trap was probably bunk from the very start.

      There are real lessons to be drawn from that conflict that apply to the modern world, chief among them how an alliance supposedly created to counter an outside foe is actually a tool for the ambitions of its most powerful member.

    2. hunkerdown

      The US is defined by its habit of reenacting attractive fictions, and always has been. That’s what Anglophones and bourgeoisie everywhere do: read a book (note, the highest sacrament of childhood!) and act it out. The US is whatever it wants to be, ever-ready for its close-up, and how dare you tell it otherwise (see also: bathroom pride).

      Ambition is meant to lead to conflict, but ambitious courtiers lose a lot more than their salaries by showing understanding of that: they lose their community, their wealth, their cred, their purpose, their privilege, their place. They become those they have made a life out of exploiting in the name of quality. I imagine many of them would rather go out with a bayonet up the jacksie than live as a commoner.

    3. fresno dan

      Take the Fork
      June 29, 2016 at 11:39 am

      “armchair hoplites”

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      If we can’t destroy those virus carrying mosquitoes, maybe we should eat them.

      Are they rich in protein?

  12. crittermom

    Regarding the article about $hillary’s Initiative for Tech & Innovation, does anybody else see the irony in that, coming from her?

    I especially enjoyed this part: “From her time as Secretary of State, Hillary was the champion of Internet Freedom…” (Still chuckling ’bout that phrase. My emphasis).

    Well, they got that right. She felt free to use a private server while in a high position of power within ‘our’ government, thereby ignoring not only security, but the FOIA, as well.
    Yet that’s supposed to be a plus for her?

    Yes, I know they didn’t mean ‘freedom’ in such a way, but I find it to be more fitting.

    The absurdity of all that’s happening this election continues to astound me.

    1. jrs

      It actually only talks a little about the internet of things which has it’s uses (hint its not in a CONSUMER context, one can question whether Nest or the like have their usage or not. But in a commercial context internet of things is used to say follow a widget (or a jet engine) throughout the lifestyle to make parts more efficient and reliable etc. by tracing them through the whole lifecycle and knowing just exactly what caused a part to say die before it’s time etc.). Is it going to solve humanities problems? Oh heck no, and you hit Jeavon’s paradox fast in terms of making the whole system more efficient, but it has it’s limited usage.

      What the article is about is mostly frankly a lot of mundane proposals but also training more students for STEM (because there is a “stem shortage” afterall). Well ok but at the same time it advocates increasing tech immigrants. That is HEARTBREAKING. It is deeply and profoundly sadistic to deliberately train young people for jobs you are at the same time outsourcing. The very mechanism coming to adulthood humans use (have always used) to try to find their way in the adult world, what the schools train them for and tell them, that is what the larger society tells them, is used to lead them to the cliff of their doom. The larger society pushes them into STEM (that is what Hillary plans to do) and pulls the rug out from under them (with all the Visas). This kind of deliberately cruelty ought to produce terrorists against the ruling class out of the young, if there was any justice in the world.

      from the iniative
      “Attract and Retain the Top Talent from Around the World: Our immigration system is plagued by visa backlogs and other barriers that prevent high-skilled workers and entrepreneurs from coming to, staying in, and creating jobs in America. Far too often, we require talented persons from other countries who are trained in U.S. universities to return home, rather than stay in here and continue to contribute to our economy. As part of a comprehensive immigration solution, Hillary would “staple” a green card to STEM masters and PhDs from accredited institutions—enabling international students who complete degrees in these fields to move to green card status. Hillary will also support “start-up” visas that allow top entrepreneurs from abroad to come to the United States, build companies in technology-oriented globally traded sectors, and create more jobs and opportunities for American workers. Immigrant entrepreneurs would have to obtain a commitment of financial support from U.S. investors before obtaining the visa, and would have to create a certain number of jobs and reach performance benchmarks in order to pursue a green card.”

      1. crittermom

        Yes, I’d noted that part, as well, & it made me sick.
        Failed to surprise me, however.

      2. JTMcPhee

        So it takes the IoT to track parts of machines and electronics and such through their life cycles? I call bunkum. May be a notion from Silicon Balley geniuses, presumably with rents and fees and IP “rights” attached, but if corps want to do that, they could even use good old standalones, even paper records (the Gold Standard for voting in elections). Like I did with failed parts from the helicopters we used, abused and maintained back in the day.

  13. alan

    Beware, the study is preliminary and most of the results so far are for women who contracted the virus in the last trimester of pregnancy. Results for those infected in 1st and 2nd trimesters are not yet available; 1st trimester infections would likely be most dangerous, IMHO. Still, intriguiing, especially given the connections to nasty pesticide Pyriproxifen.

  14. alan

    Above meant in reply to shargash re zika. Reply button doesn’t seem to nest comments
    for me!

  15. Plenue

    “Trading Places: Neocons and Cockroaches”

    Reminds me of when Lovecraft made a passing reference to the race of beetle people who would inherit the earth from humanity. They couldn’t do a worse job, certainly.

  16. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Trump drove through a hole in DNC platform…

    “I was really quite surprised to see that Secretary Clinton’s delegates rejected our proposal to kill the TPP despite the fact that she has indicated she does not want to see it get onto the floor [of the U.S. Congress],” Sanders told Mitchell.

    Why was Sanders ‘surprised?”

    How many other surprises are still out there?

    1. hunkerdown

      He’s acting out the crisis-of-faith schtick as a soft means of discrediting the Party. Remember, a nation of reenactors.

  17. Brooklin Bridge

    Andrew Smolski has a very good article at counterpunch on the flaws with lesser evil-ism.

    He frames the discussion as a response to John Halle and Noam Chomsky who have stated that one should vote for a Democrat when a Republican is the alternative even in states that have 3rd party choices, but Smolski keeps to subject and his article makes the case against required choice of the lessor evil simple and compelling:

    If you advocate that third parties should be abandoned in contentious states, then you are advocating that third parties should be abandoned. We can call this the “risk nothing, win nothing” political strategy. When there is a left flank, Chomsky and Halle have advocated that it should be abandoned if it threatens the Democratic contender against a Republican. Why should the Democrats care about progressive demands when the Congressional Progressive Caucus is only 29% of the party and there is no left flank to apply pressure? And why should they [democrat insiders] feel threatened by a left flank that will abandon itself as soon as there is anything substantial at risk?

    I admit I was disappointing when I found Chomsky arguing that one must hold one’s nose and vote for HIllary. I would have expected that he would at least discuss or give a nod to the core fallacy of such a position (highlighted in bold in the above snippet): preemptive, reliable and repetitive capitulation from the left consistently results in long term and increasingly irreversible rightward drift.

    Without any argument explaining why such an outcome is incorrect or desirable, lessor evilism remains essentially the apology of a slower death by quicksand.

    1. Carolinian

      Thanks for linking this ’cause I was gonna. For those Sanders supporters around here who say Never Hillary this is your manifesto. Also see

      from Counterpunch editor St. Clair. He claims the great Chomsky is being led astray by Halle–a minor nobody. I’ve seen Chomsky interviews in other places where Chomsky says the fears about Trump are exaggerated.

      However St. Clair is arguing for the left to develop it’s own third party option, not vote Trump.

    2. jrs

      Now I’m going to sound like Chomsky but has a left flank voting (socialist even) at any time in the U.S. two party system ever pushed things leftward? Does this belief have any historical support? I suspect only a movement might push things leftward, not voting. And that does have historical support. Isn’t the rightward drift actually much bigger than the U.S.?

      No, I’m not going to include a quote about “if voting changed anything …” because I think the powers that be CAN be a little bit scared of the vote (even though they do hold all the power to tilt the playing field). They were scared of Bernie, but they were mostly scared of him WINNING. I am skeptical a 3rd party vote can drive them left (why in heavens name would it when Bernie getting almost half of the Dem vote didn’t?). But I think if one can not stomach Trump or Hillary a 3rd party vote makes perfect sense for that reason alone. There is nothing wrong with refusing to vote for candidates you loath even if it is part of no larger strategy at all (except maybe future matching funds).

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