Links 7/12/16

Vanishing Act: What’s Causing Sharp Decline in Insects and Why It Matters Yale Environment 360 (resilc)

We can get rid of the Hitlers and the Himmlers, but not the Speers Corey Robin (martha r)

Truth is in danger as new techniques used to stop journalists covering the news EurekAlert (Chuck L)

Google self-driving car project names general counsel as scrutiny rises Reuters (martha r)

Radioactive waste and the nuclear war on Australia’s Aboriginal people Ecologist (micael t)

New Zealanders raise millions to buy beach and donate it to the public Boing Boing (resilc). However, in Australia all beaches are public, IIRC to 150 feet from the water line.

Nordic politicians are debating making school mandatory for senior citizens Quartz (resilc)


Uniting the Conservative Party will be impossible without a real plan for Brexit Telegraph

UK scientists dropped from EU projects because of post-Brexit funding fears Guardian. We warned the punishment would start. Expect more if the UK is perceived to be foot-dragging.

Theresa May vows to ‘forge a new role’ for Britain outside European Union as second female Prime Minister in nation’s history Telegraph

6 things to expect from Theresa May’s premiership Politico

Merkel urges Britain to quickly clarify relationship with EU Reuters. Merkel has now delivered this message on at least three occasions.

Wait…someone just made Cameron’s happy tune into the Tories’ Imperial March (VIDEO) The Canary (Chris G)

May Gets Two Days Not Two Months to Steady Brexit Ship Bloomberg

Theresa May’s win has steadied the markets. Now is our chance to pluck the fruits of Brexit Telegraph. Tory delusion syndrome. Also media leave boostersm is going to make it even more difficult what one of my contacts insists is the High Tory plan to not go through with Brexit.

Contrast the Telegraph article with this: Brexit: Britain’s looming WTO challenge Financial Times, which reconfirms what we wrote in Brexit: Huge Spanner in the Works – Negotiation of New UK Trade Deals Verboten Till Exit Complete without drawing out the dire implications.

Chilcot Report

Chilcot Report damns the charade of Iraq War – The Boston Globe (resilc) Good to see some US follow-through.

Chilcot: UK insists it has ‘no long-term legal responsibility to clean up DU from Iraq’ Ecologist

Europeans Fear Wave of Refugees Will Mean More Terrorism, Fewer Jobs Pew Research Center (martha r)

The President of Belgian Magistrates: Neoliberalism is a form of Fascism Defend Democracy (Joe H)

La ‘excepción’ italiana El Pais. Editorial. Europeans are determined to cut of their noses to spite their faces. But Rajoy is regularly more hard-core neoliberal than Merkel and even Schauble. Does El Pais regularly sell the government’s position?

Italy ‘facing 20 years of economic woe’ BBC


China’s Claim to Most of South China Sea Has No Legal Basis, Court Says Wall Street Journal

China Has No Historic Rights to South China Sea Resources, Court Says Bloomberg

China defiant ahead of court ruling on its claims in South China Sea Guardian. Including older article to show that China expected to lose the case and will behave badly. One of the smartest investors I know predicted over 20 years ago that World War III would be over the Spratlys. This was before anyone regarded China as a geopolitical power.

How low will the yuan go and what harm will it do? MacroBusiness

EU Says China Needs to Give EU Companies Fair Market Access Associated Press

Maduro says Citibank to close Venzuela’s currency accounts Financial Times

In Africa, the U.S. Military Sees Enemies Everywhere Intercept (resilc)


Crimeans Mock Kiev With Blackout Monument Russia Insider (Chuck L)


U.S. Will Deploy 560 More Troops to Iraq to Help Retake Mosul From ISIS New York Times

Syrian Troops foil al-Qaeda riposte in Aleppo as France warns al-Qaeda could replace ISIL Juan Cole (resilc)

Imperial Collapse Watch

Chelsea Manning prison suicide attempt is confirmed BBC


The time the Clinton campaign accidentally released a Sanders attack ad — in July Washington Post (martha r)

Clinton campaign rejects Dem plan for carbon price The Hill. Martha r: “Already blatantly rejecting the platform.”

Sanders loses on trade at Democratic platform meeting Washington Post (martha r)

Does Bernie Sanders Represent The Future Of The Democratic Party? FiveThirtyEight (resilc)

What Sanders’ black staffers actually said Carl Beijer (martha r). More detail on how Sanders was smeared.

Can the Candidates Change?New York Review of Books. Resilc: “Yes, Clintoon will do a full morph into Nixon in a pantsuit. the enemies list is growing…..” Actually, that is doing a disservice to that great American socialist Richard Nixon, who favored revenue sharing and a negative income tax.

Clinton Crushing Trump Among College-Educated in Bloomberg Poll Bloomberg

Trump narrows search for running mate Financial Times. They all suck. See American Conservative on Flynn: Flynn’s Warped Worldview. And what happened to Oklahoma governor, who seemed to be an interesting choice?

Nomi Prins, Trump Wins (Even If He Loses) TomDispatch (Chuck L). Flagged earlier by Lambert.

Facing historically low levels, Lake Mead officials are fending off a water war. Here’s how Los Angeles Times (resilc)

Black Injustice Tipping Point

Nurse in photo describes her arrest in Baton Rouge as ‘work of God’ Reuters

Black Lives Matter March Shuts Down Bridge Between Memphis And Arkansas Popular Resistance (martha r)

Warning: Pokemon GO is a Death Sentence if you are a Black Man. Medium (Chuck L) :-(


Gunman opens fire on crowd at candlelight vigil in West Baltimore Baltimore Sun

Inside The Secret Group For Gun Owners Banned From Facebook Forbes

Police State Watch

Dallas police chief says ‘we’re asking cops to do too much in this country’ Washington Post. Makes a good point regarding schools. We’ve regularly featured stories of police being called in over minor altercations and even mere name calling. The over-reliance on police reflects how the US is becoming a low-trust society.

Copspeak: 7 Ways Journalists Use Police Jargon to Obscure the Truth FAIR (martha r)

Surprising New Evidence Shows Bias in Police Use of Force but Not in Shootings New York Times. Due to the hour, I have not even read the article. I hope a discerning reader will have a good look at the underlying study (as in there might be an opportunity for a “hoisted from comments” post). The big questions are what is the caliber of underlying data? Unless they are working only from dash cams or a clearly neutral information source, I don’t see how this can be anything other than “garbage in, garbage out.” And that is before you get to the question of what justifies a shooting? The standard is supposed to be that the suspect represents an immediate threat to the officer or the community. The common practice of shooting a suspect merely because he is fleeing is almost never warranted. Shootings are far more controversial than routine policing and therefore more subject to records tidying up and everyone getting their story together, so IMHO this “counterintuitive” finding makes perfect sense.

How to Film Cops Vice (resilc)

After Dallas shooting, U.S. police forces rethinking tactics Reuters (EM)

Police are safer under Obama than they have been in decades Washington Post (resilc)

EpiPen costs have soared 450 percent in the past 12 years, for no good reason. Slate (resilc)

Can We Ignore the Alarm Bells the Bond Market Is Ringing? New York Times

Bye-Bye, Bonus: Brexit Seen Biting Profit for Years at U.S. Banks Bloomberg. Lambert: “Goldman wins again.”

Class Warfare

How Uber secretly investigated its legal foes — and got caught Verge (micael t)

How We Wage the War on Drugs American Conservative (reilc)

Our Greatest Enemy: Optimism The Smart Set (resilc). Your humble blogger warned about this in early 2008: The Dark Side of Optimism in the Conference Board Review

Antidote du jour (furzy):

pretty birds links

And a bonus video from Chuck L

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. Pirmann

    So, last night on MSNBC, Jeb Bush indicated that he will not be voting in this election. Reason being, he cannot get behind either candidate.

    It would be great to see Bernie Sanders make a statement like that. I do not see any reason that he should feel bound to endorse the Democrat party candidate, being that said party booed him, rigged the primary against him, and has failed to advance his ideas onto the party platform in any meaningful way.

    Plus, I’d hate to think that Jeb! is more of a revolutionary than Bernie, but I fear that will prove to be the case, likely before sundown today.

    1. Roger Smith

      For what it is worth: Sanders official: Campaign isn’t over despite appearance with Clinton

      At the event in Portsmouth, N.H., the two will “discuss their commitment to building an America that is stronger together and an economy that works for everyone, not just those at the top,” according to the Sanders campaign. But, Sanders officials say he won’t push for more concessions from Clinton.

      Which is daft because he is the one that made concessions, not Clinton. Her education proposal is garbage and dead in the water. Her health plan…same. Clinton stayed sedentary and waited until she was handed what she wanted, like a spoiled child–like usual.

      1. Pirmann

        I still don’t get how one can have a platform that opposes elite and corporate interests, then go out and support the embodiment of elite and corporate interests.

        “A man got to have a code.”. – Omar

        1. Arizona Slim

          I don’t get it either. And if Bernie Sanders thinks that his supporters are going to unite behind Hillary, he has another thing coming.

          Sheesh. I find myself agreeing with Jeb!

          1. pretzelattack

            he said he couldn’t deliver his supporters to clinton, she’d have to earn them. there’s no way she can earn my vote, because i know she will never represent my interests.

            1. Pirmann

              Agree, but even so, why does HE personally feel compelled to support Her? Did he believe in any of the words that came out of his mouth?

              Did he even want to win in the first place?

              1. Jason Ipswitch

                He fears Trump more than her. I’m not certain I agree (they may be equally awful in different ways), but understanding how and why he would think that seems rather obvious to me.

                1. ChiGal

                  Wow, we keep having this exact convo between those who are stuck on Bernie doing something or he’s a sellout and those who patiently explain his likely reasons and that moving forward is not solely up to Bernie, it’s up to US.

                  1. tegnost

                    That’s right, he took the baton as far as he could take it, and I appreciate him for doing so. He’s not done, but this part is finished. If the dem party is unable to see how they’ve betrayed their base then they deserve to lose, and it’s not bernies fault, it’s their own.

                    1. Bev

                      from email:

                      I am thrilled to announce that Bob Fitrakis the lawyer and board member and writer of the Columbus Institute of Contemporary Journalism, has filed the first Ohio Election Integrity Lawsuit against Edison Media Research to release the raw data which shows such dramatic differences on exit polls and electronic vote totals in eleven states in the presidential primaries throughout the US. The file number and details of this lawsuit as transmitted to me are as follows: 

                      Although I have presented the file number of the lawsuit at this time, as you may find out the contents are not available for viewing at this time. Nonetheless since so many of you wanted the file number, I am including it in this announcement for you. I will let all of you know as soon as the details of the lawsuit will become available. The biggest opportunity in informing you in detail about this lawsuit is the education that goes with informing you about our election systems. 

                      The following transaction was entered by Fitrakis, Robert on 7/11/2016 at 5:03 PM EDT and filed on 7/11/2016 
                      Case Name:Johnson v. Edison Media Research, Inc
                      Case Number:2:16-cv-00670-EAS-TPK
                      Filer: Peter M JohnsonDocument Number:2
                      Docket Text: 
                      with civil cover sheet against Edison Media Research, Inc, filed by Peter M Johnson. (Attachments: # (1) Civil Cover Sheet) (Fitrakis, Robert

                      The exit polls have been adjusted to fit electronic vote totals since 2004 when they appeared to show Kerry winning against Bush. Explanations were developed at that time to explain the differences between the exit polls and the vote totals which was that exit polls are generally unreliable. This assessment of exit poll reliability was developed by Karl Rove who was an assistant to George Bush. In order to keep the Media Consortium business money coming in, Edison Media Research has always edited, or “cleaned” as they put it their data since that time. The raw data exit polls are stored at the University of Connecticut. No one has ever requested them. We are requesting it for the first time. 

                      People who want to see raw data are often labeled “conspiracy theorists”. We want to make sure you know that we will be described as such. Actually, we are just people wanting to see unedited exit polls and to learn what really happened during our primary elections. As you may know, the exit polls and the electronic vote totals are very different in eleven states. The Media Consortium and Edison Media Research canceled the exit polls for California, New Jersey, Delaware, South Dakota, North Dakota, Montana, New Mexico and Puerto Rico, after receiving a letter from Cliff Arnebeck, the other lawyer who works with Bob Fitrakis asking the Edison Research to put a hold on the raw data. 

                      We are expecting the Edison Media Research to file a motion to dismiss. They have up to sixty days to do this. During this time, we need to spread the word about this lawsuit to as many people as possible. We also need to raise funds to address further legal costs. If you feel inspired to support us, please donate to this lawsuit on the Ohio Election Integrity lawsuit button on  We really appreciate your help however large or small. Thank you!! Our costs are going to rise significantly now. If we raise money beyond our legal costs, we will be able to direct some of this money towards alternative media education so that many people in the US begin to know about the kind of election editing that goes on.

                       If we are successful with this lawsuit, we will then file another lawsuit to look at the paper ballots. Everyone will be educated throughout this process about the real role of Edison Media Research and the Media Consortium in presenting news about our elections. The Media Consortium consists of CBS, NBC, MSNBC, ABC, Fox News and the Associated Press (AP). Our examining the ballots will show us who really won the Democratic presidential primary. Although Bernie may have already conceded by that time or before then, at least he will know what the truth was about how many votes he really garnered. He can do with that what he wants. Additionally, voters will know the truth about the Democratic presidential primary and how votes were handled. 

                      The results of looking at these ballots has substantial consequences for American people. Americans will have been educated about what really happens when large corporations with partisan interests who are part of the 1% count our ballots with proprietary software that no one is allowed to look at to see if the vote totals have changed. This process in our country makes our elections extremely vulnerable to hacking and manipulation. As a large group of people, perhaps millions of people, learn about the unfortunate nature of our election process, that same large group will have a chance to begin to demand and create a much more transparent system, a system that is run by the people and for the people. A system that is hopefully not run by private partisan corporations.  This is also the deep heartfelt wish of both the Institute of American Democracy and Election Integrity and the Institute of Contemporary Journalism. It is a wish which members of both Institutes feel will require the support of millions of people to effect a change. 

                      Come join us in manifesting this change. It will take time, but it will be extremely satisfying!

                      Lori Grace 
                      Institute for American Democracy and Election Integrity                   
                      Robert Fitrakis
                      Columbus Institute for Contemporary Journalism

                      Just in! Lori Grace, Bob Fitrakis and Bill Simpich will be on KPFA tomorrow,
                      July 12th at 5pm.


                2. That Which Sees

                  A Sanders rep should engage with the Trump campaign on Glass-Stegall. As a Real Estate developer, Trump used to be able to buy insurance from Travellers and obtaining financing from Citi. Now that Citi has eaten Travellers the ologopoly has leverage against his business interests.

                  It’s possible to get Trump to endorse (and actually follow thru on) a repeal of Glass-Stegall if that is what will deliver Sanders voters. WIN-WIN.

                  Its tragic that the Sanders-Trump debate never happened. One understands that Trump didn’t want to accidentally catapult Sanders into the Democratic Party nomination. It would have been wonderful to have a highly watched, 2 hour expose on Clinton’s baggage. Probably the most civil and polite debate ever.

                    1. That Which Sees

                      Trump killed it. The money was found and he backed out.

                      From his point of view, he wanted to run against Hillary. Letting Sanders hammer on Hillary was a potential positive to attracting Sanders voters to his side. Accidentally helping Sanders beat Hillary to the nomination was a major risk.

                      Trump-Clinton is very winnable for Trump. Trump-Sanders would have been be difficult to impossible for Trump. His position on Trade (TPP, etc.) vs. Hillary should pull over large numbers of Labour voters even if he cannot attract union leadership.

                      So Risk > Reward, Trump killed it. Understandable, but a sad circumstances.

                3. Stormcrow

                  Yes, I think it is myopic to fear Trump more than Clinton. I find them to be equally dreadful, each in his or her own way.

                  Why Sanders would fear Trump more than Clinton is, to me, incomprehensible. Perhaps he doesn’t worry enough about her foreign and military policy? But given his antipathy to Goldman Sachs, why can’t he just back away from her?

                  1. Harry

                    The Republicans are irrelevant to the adoption of a socialised healthcare system in the US. They will never support it. The battle is to make the Dems adopt it as a party objective. Which is why HRC is the enemy, not T Rump.

                  2. zapster

                    I fear Clinton a lot more than Trump because TPP and her belligerence toward Russia. That’s plenty right there. Plus her power to compel in DC. She’s much more likely to accomplish her delusions than Trump is.

              2. ocop

                It’s probably the minimum he has to do to retain his influence in the Senate, which IMO is a worthy cause. I assume Sanders is under no illusions about an “endorsement” from him swaying his supports to Hillary–hence the comments about earning their support.

                It’s not the most emotionally satisfying outcome, but it may be the most effective long term if Bernie spin the movement out into something sustainable… which may not be possible if he is perceived by the broader Democratic identity politics hive mind to be the “reason” Clinton loses to Trump. I mean, why else wouldn’t the left want to vote for The First Woman President??

                1. Katniss Everdeen

                  I’m sure I don’t understand how capitulation to clinton now allows Bernie to “retain his influence in the Senate.” Or have any influence.

                  Having used his political capital to get her elected, how does he then lead the opposition to the policies on which they have virtually opposite views–TPP, “healthcare,” fracking, free college or income inequality?

                  He’d have far more credibility and a far louder megaphone opposing Trump, which, at least with respect to TPP or increasingly insane neocon foreign intervention, would be unnecessary.

                  As far as his “pledge” to support the “democratic” nominee, I think he should just say that he would have done it had there actually been one.

                  1. Arizona Slim

                    Retain his influence in the Senate?

                    Good luck with that one, Bernie. Methinks you just killed your political career.

                    Better start lining up that visiting professorship at UVM or Middlebury.

                  2. Yves Smith Post author

                    Did you miss that he’s the ranking member of the Senate Budget Committee? And if the Dems retake the Senate (likely given the seats up for grabs, has nothing to do with Clinton) he’d be the chair? That is a very influential spot.

                    In fact, I’d lay even odds that Harry Reid told him he’d lose his seat if he played hardball with Clinton much longer.

              3. voteforno6

                I think that Sanders wanted to win. He doesn’t give me the impression that he’s deterred by losing. He does have a record of working with people not aligned with him, in order to try to get something done. What makes him stand out from others, in my opinion, is that he really fights like hell for what he wants. So, I don’t see this as being particularly outrageous. The Clintonistas out there want his submission, and that’s one thing that they will never get from him.

                1. Pat

                  Short of him getting down on his knees and begging her for forgiveness for ever getting in her way and declaring that she is the best person to ever run for the Presidency…no even then they will never forgive him and move on. Sanders is on the punishment list no matter what.

                2. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

                  Bernie appearing alongside her/it means she/it already has his submission.
                  Yes campaigns are useful things because they eventually reveal the candidate’s character, there are many actions he could have taken instead that would uphold his principles. Why does the Left always get betrayed?
                  I’d think there are quite a few people who gave him a $220 M war chest who want a refund. We live in an era of some good men but certainly no great ones.

                  1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

                    Lets’ hope it’s not Barbarossa II

                    If I recall correctly, he presented himself to the pope and respectfully prostrated himself.

                3. Escher

                  I think you’re right. His method is to fight like hell for what’s right as he sees it, work with allies as they come, and when he doesn’t win, conciliate and move on.

                  I happen to think the Democratic Party is beyond saving, at least until Hillary’s “I’ve got mine” demographic dies off, and I won’t be voting for her this fall, thank you very much, but I don’t think Bernie’s obviously wrong for thinking and doing differently.

                4. SpringTexan

                  I agree entirely. He’s doing his best to keep fighting for the things he believes as his lights guide him. If some can’t see the difference between this and a betrayal, they are not looking hard enough. One thing he’s gotten is more money for federally qualified health clinics (which only have as much money as they do because he fought for them before).

                  Someone else’s lights may differ and I don’t fault them for doing differently, but I agree with voteforno6. (Sanders has a good track record, and you need to look at that.)

      2. marym
        If this is reasonably accurate the “campaigns” have been working on coming together for a while.

        I accepted that Sanders is a work-within-the-system guy; that he probably started his campaign like his sort of filibusters – to get ideas out there, and maybe some ego gratification; and that if he didn’t win he’d support Clinton. I even accepted that the success of his campaign was a surprise even to him, and that he would falter in knowing what to do about it.

        But now he seems to be starting to undermine his own message with “scary Trump” and the notion that Clinton has magically become more “progressive” with a fake public option and means tested tuition.

        1. jonboinAR

          I think what happened is basically what Yves and Lambert have suggested.
          1) He never has tried to hide that in the end, unless he was the nominee himself, that he would support the eventual Democratic nominee. Didn’t he in some way agree with the Demo hierarchy at the very beginning of his campaign to do so?

          2) (Speculated:) He’s “caved” a little earlier than many hoped or anticipated at least partly in response to the Democratic leadership having somehow leveraged his position in the Senate (seats on committees, influence, etc.), more or less forcing him to do this now.

          Life continues.

      3. Lambert Strether

        People from the Sanders campaign teleconference earlier this morning explicitly said they were told there would be no endorsement. Also, that Sanders wanted a big crowd.

        It’s going to be interesting to see if Clinton can make a speech through gritted teeth. I’m guessing yes.

          1. Patricia

            Yes, explicitly. Then he assigns his platform to her, listed carefully as he always does. “Hilary Clinton understands….” “..Hillary Clinton will make an outstanding president and I am proud to stand with her today…”

            Gut reaction: never before has a speech make me nauseous…

            Many will never vote Hillary—you can hear them at this event, too. The youtube chat is full of Jill not Hill…

            1. Buttinsky

              Checking such reddit sites as “Sanders for President” and “Kossacks for Sanders,” one can see the instantaneous effect, like a popped balloon. People unsubscribing to everything “Bernie,” demanding their money back from the Bernie campaign, quitting the Dem party and abandoning the idea of even paying attention to the convention (#Demexit trending), debating if their vote should be for Stein or Trump.

              There are plenty still pledging their personal loyalty to Bernie and his ideals, but even the most optimistic sound desperate. And no one is throwing Hillary a bone of any kind.

              It will be interesting to see if a “movement” can survive the immediate emotional trauma, even if the endorsement was expected by many. I’d put my money on “not.” I think the visceral reaction of perfectly sane human beings to “pragmatic” politics is always underestimated by the “pragmatic.” We understand the “pragmatic” part always has more to do with individual political careers than effecting public policy for the good of the many in our decreasingly democratic republic. Bad news all the way around for both Sanders and Clinton. And us.

              1. Roger Smith

                The fallout will be interesting. It was never about Bernie the “dude” for me and I do not regret any of my donations, support, or my vote. I believe in the policies.

                What I disagree with was, what I feel, his miscalculation that will disenchant the change wave he inspired and brought out of the wood work.

              2. aab

                I am confused by what happened this morning. I accepted he would probably have to endorse her. But done like this is horrible. Campaign saying it will continue, no endorsement, then full-throated, deeply dishonest endorsement, stranding people who have been raising money to get to the convention. They can’t get their money back at this point. What happened?

                Did they seriously threaten his grandchildren? Is that DNC aide murder like ACTUALLY out of a movie? Whatever he is getting out of doing the endorsement like this, I don’t see how it’s worth it. They weren’t going to be able to get him out of the Senate. They’re not actually going to be nicer to him now. That’s not how Clinton rolls. He can’t be dumb enough to be falling for the idea that Trump is worse than Clinton.

                I hope Canova doesn’t suffer because of this.

                1. Buck Eschaton

                  Maybe the BLM protests are having more effect than we thought. Maybe the DNC scared Bernie into endorsing before the convention.

                2. Buttinsky

                  I keep thinking of all those Bernie supporters and delegates who have indeed been stranded two weeks before the Democrat convention. Do you really want to go and celebrate the Democratic Party and Hillary Clinton? Even if you still have all kinds of warm, fuzzy feelings about Bernie himself, are you ready to hear even one more “pragmatic” syllable from his mouth?

                  As Lambert says, the jury is still out on the degree to which all of this can fairly be characterized as “sheepdogging.” But, surely, it’s bad enough, whatever it is. The herd is panicked, as well they should be, Hillary heavy with the scent of wolf, the way forward dark and unprotected….

                  Meanwhile, the reddit site for Jill Stein reports booming business today, with new subscribers pouring in.

              3. Jess

                I’m on the mailing list for the local Bernie group, which is now morphing into a progressive future group. First email in my in-box this morning, from a fellow member of the group, was headlined “Bernie is for Sale”. The message simply said, “time to drop all Dem party affiliations”.

                Yep. (And judging from the subsequent back-and-forth among group members, most are of this mind.) Tremendous mistake by Bernie. No profile in courage here.

              4. Pat

                I’m going to hope that when the shock and disappointment wears off a little, saner emotions emerge. It was beyond clear once he had the nomination stolen from him (and yes, I do believe he had more voters behind him than Clinton did, whether they were not allowed to vote or didn’t have their votes counted), that the revolution was going to be about 2018 and beyond. There was only so much to be gained by continued pressure on Clinton and the current Democratic Party.

                I can only hope that those feeling betrayed will allow for a little bit of entreaty reminding them Sanders told them that from the beginning. And in some ways his unexpected success has ended up with people having unfortunately unrealistic hopes. Now they may choose to take their hopes for the future to third parties, or they may continue to try to reshape the Democratic Party or they may take their toys and go home. I hope it is either of the first two. Yes the system is rigged. But both Sanders and Trump have made it clear that system has deep systemic cracks which can be exploited. It is not the time to retreat entirely. It is time to regroup.

                But then I went through the deepest part of my disappointment after NY and then California were so clearly rigged for Sanders to fail and have had time to readjust to the fact that the battle was lost. The war can still be won OVER TIME.

              1. paintedjaguar

                @Patricia “It’s the timing and extent of endorsement….”

                This is almost exactly what I was about to say. It’s the very same factors that made Elizabeth Warren’s endorsement seem so repugnant. Further, what Bernie had said was that he would support the nominee and oppose Trump. That didn’t necessarily imply a full fledged endorsement.

                Sanders also repeatedly promised to stay in opposition “all the way to the convention.” This really was a betrayal of that promise and he hasn’t made any explanation to his supporters as to why he chose this course. Do all these pols have tin ears, or what?

    2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      I think rich or powerful people are different from you and me.

      We vote by voting.

      The rich or powerful vote by fundraising or donating money.

      Money may not buy happiness, but it goes far in politics.

      1. LifelongLib

        The rich have money. They don’t have votes. They know very well that if it was just about votes, the rest of us would long since have voted to take away their riches. Hence their constant battle to make votes count as little as possible.

    3. Heliopause

      Look, Bernie made a decision from the start to run as a Dem. He is working within the system, just as he has his entire political career. He has been a mayor, a US Representative, and a US Senator. He has caucused with the Dems and votes with them most of the time. Compromise with the system has been a fact of his life for decades and it was never reasonable to expect he would do otherwise this time.

      His quid pro quo was to get Clinton on the record with some policy compromises (not that we believe she’ll really follow through on them). He got that, now he’s endorsing. There’s a real argument over whether he got enough, but this ultimate outcome was never much in doubt.

      1. Code Name D

        Not to put words in Bernie’s mouth, but a case could be made that his endorsement was on the assumption that Clinton won the primary fair and square and that she comports herself in a presidential manner with the interest of America at heart. Even Sanders must know by know how rigged the primaries were, and she is already dogged by scandals and investigations.

        I would say any promise he might have made in the past are null and void when it comes to endorsing some one as corrupted as she is.

        And OBTW, I notice that all of the talk about “endorsing” comes from the Clinton camp, not from any Sander’s sources. Why do I get the feeling Sanders will endorse in absence?

      2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Seems a bit of overselling to call it a revolution then, if that has always been the quid pro quo from the beginning.

        Maybe there is more.

        1. Heliopause

          Marketing. “Hope” and “Change” and “Great” were already taken so Bernie chose “Revolution.” “I will extract some policy concessions” would have been closer to the truth but is not much of a marketing slogan.

          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            Maybe ‘Make America Progressive.”

            “Never Hillary’ was not his goal.

          2. paintedjaguar

            The tragedy is that Bernie hasn’t extracted policy concessions, as far as we know, merely campaign language which will mean about as much as Obama’s “public option” farce.

      3. notabanker

        He folded and he’s a chump. Trump is blasting her on twitter using Bernie’s own words and he now looks like a total clown. US politics as usual.

    4. cyclist

      I think what this all means is that working within Democratic Party is unsalvageable. Most mornings I get to listen to Democracy Now! on my way to work and was absolutely nauseated by today’s segment with Rep. Keith Ellison and Josh Fox. They were all hopeful and positive that change will be coming, despite not getting anything much inserted into the DC party platform. Bernie’s statement about this being the ‘most progressive’ party platform in some time was mentioned. Do these guys know they have just been thrown under the bus? And that after the coronation, HRC will totally ignore the party platform anyway?

      1. Lambert Strether

        All that depends on what Sanders supporters do, doesn’t it? If they think of themselves as passive non-agents to be molded, they will surely be exactly that.

    5. coboarts

      As I’d said here before… it was said here before, before everyone got all hopey/wishey. The Sanders campaign was never meant to be anything other than a left suck head fake.

  2. Harry

    I suggest it’s more of a privy council plan to avoid brexit. Stage one was getting May into office ( another BoE alum, and not a bright one.

  3. EndOfTheWorld

    RE: China has no legal rights to South China Sea, etc. Right, China has maintained all along that it will not abide by the court’s decision. A quote from on of the Guardian articles: “The Philippine president, Rodrigo Duterte, is widely considered unpredictable and his moves in the next days and weeks will determine what could happen next.” Yes, Duterte has hinted he may talk unilaterally with the Chinese, telling the US to take a flying f#@k. On the domestic front the newly nicknamed “Duterte Harry” has virtually declared open season on all suspected drug dealers. At least 100 have already been extra-judicially killed. Yet he supports medical marijuana.

    1. vidimi

      the sanctioned murder campaign underway in the philippines right now is atrocious and reminds me of the communist purge in indonesia 50 years ago. who knows how many will dies when it’s over. you can now murder anyone so long as you accuse them of drug peddling first.

      so long as duterte is in power, i’m aftaid i won’t visit the philippines which is a shame, as the country was near the top of my list and i wanted to go a few years ago when the typhoon changed my plans. my list of countries on the do-not-go list is, sadly, increasing rapidly.

      1. EndOfTheWorld

        I don’t think it’s quite that bad. They do have a problem with speed and prescription pain killers, I guess, although as a foreigner over there we seldom see it. He got elected on a get tough on drugs platform. I don’t think there will be widespread murder.

  4. Ignacio

    La ‘excepción italiana’: the article makes the case that Renzi’s plan for bank bailout is to transfer all the losses to italian taxpayers and avoid EU bailout protocols that involve falling under EU austerity rules and surveillance (and transferring most of the losses to taxpayers!).

    In both cases taxpayers end paying the bill but it seems that italian managers want to avoid the kind of surveillance applied to, for instance, Spain or Portugal. This seems to piss off the editorial board of El Pais. They argue that why not apply the same rules to, for example, Portugal avoiding to mention the elephant on the room (Spain). They also argue, without explaining, that Renzi’s plan would destroy the credibility of the european financial system, as if it’s credibility hadn’t been destroyed well before!

    I think this is a case of Editorial noise.

      1. Lawyercat

        From lurking on podemos forums, my impression is that accusations against the Spanish press being biased establishment-serving mouthpieces is strong.

          1. clinical wasteman

            See also the breathtaking triumphalism of that outlet (as in sewer) during the first (of what, three?) days of the abortive anti-Chavez coup of 2002. I was in Madrid that week, and even the openly Franco-philic ABC couldn’t match the local Paper of Record for sheer vindictive (soon to be sheepishly semi-retracted) delight.
            Nostromo’s point about liberal newspaper shareholding is worth pursuing too: eg. Pigasse (the ‘leftist’ of Lazard) and Niel (porn & price-gouged telecoms) in charge of the sorry husk that was Le Monde; De Benedetti (under indictment for knowingly signing off on the death-by-asbestos of an unknown number — well, 17 named so far, the rest are too dead to litigate — of Olivetti factory workers) at Repubblica/Espresso; Agnelli family at La Stampa AND Corriere della Sera until recently; Lebedev of The Independent (not that it’s a newspaper any more if the definition involves paper)…
            Maybe also worth noting that a co-defendant in the Olivetti asbestos trial (which won’t happen because prescrizione, i.e. statute of limitations) is one Corrado Passera, ‘technocratic superminister’ in the divinely appointed Mario Monti government (first of three and counting), but before that the banker behind the Intesa Sanpaolo conglomerate that now stands to mop up the ‘good’ crumbs of Italy’s ‘bad’ banks.

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      I have not gotten enough detail on the Italian “good bank/bad bank” plan to know how much the bank supervisors will do to the banks that need rescues. However a bank with a lot of “bad bank” is going to have so little “good bank” left that it will probably wind up being consolidated into another bank, particularly since Italy has many small-ish banks. So I would expect there to be more defacto punishment than the editors assume.

      The point re credibility of the system is miguided. Banks are ultimately backstopped by the state. The “credibility” thus rests on the adequacy of checks and balances, which includes HOW the rescues are done, and not the fact of a rescue. And honestly, as much as the Italian banks did stupid stuff, they were mainly wrecked by the aftermath of the criss, and not by blowing a monster housing bubble as in Spain.

      1. Ignacio

        I am happy to read your opinion, much more independent than that of El Pais.
        Unfortunately I have no clue on what the italian banks did to be in that bad shape. Part of the damage must be in line with the rest of the economy I guess.

      2. nostromo

        For what I understand of the issues, not completely clear, the Italian banks have sold lots of subordinate debt, like in Spain, where those were called “preferentes”. Under the new bail-in rules, those should have a haircut, like they had in Spain. But they have sold 31 B€ to small savers, and Renzi does not want to apply those rules.

        El Pais protests about it, but I think this interference is not coming from the government in this case. It comes from the main El Pais shareholders (Banks: HSBC, La Caixa and Santander plus vulture funds). They prefer having easier prey for them to fish in Italy, I guess.

        1. Yves Smith Post author

          Yes, in many and probably most cases, these sales were fraudulent. Depositors were misled. There have been protests. The banksters should be punished, No clue if that will happen.

          The really dodgy part is that this started when Draghi was the head of the Bank of Italy. He may have endorsed it. If so, I hope some enterprising journalist exposes it.

  5. sleepy

    From the BLM shutting down a Memphis bridge article:

    Hundreds stayed on the bridge, though Tennessee Highway Patrol and the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office helped the Memphis Police Department keep the protest nonviolent.Hundreds stayed on the bridge, though Tennessee Highway Patrol and the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office helped the Memphis Police Department keep the protest nonviolent.

    The cops kept the protest nonviolent? What does that mean, that the protesters were itching for mayhem and violence, but the authorities restrained them?

    Given the normal media framing, I would guess one of the things it certainly was not intended to mean, is that the cops restrained themselves from committing violence against the demonstrators.

    1. ChrisFromGeorgia

      Anyone else see the bridges/highway shutdowns as the most effective/threatening tactic to use against the 1%?

      Think of the US interstate/highway system as arteries taking blood to the brain of the 1%. The whole financial ponzi depends on consumers getting more crap delivered to them faster. A little “arteriosclerosis” might give the rentiers a stroke.

      Here in Atlanta the democratic mayor got serious on stopping the BLM marchers when they tried to enter the main I75/85 connector. Of course it was for their “safety”.

      1. Buck Eschaton

        I’m very hopeful seeing BLM take to the freeways. People totally freak out re freeways…and if you see what building the freeways did to so many African-American communites around the country it’s a very fitting place to take the resistance. I hope they and others do a lot more of it.

  6. wbgonne

    What Sanders’ black staffers actually said Carl Beijer (martha r). More detail on how Sanders was smeared.

    Sanders didn’t pander to the Black Misleadership Class and it wouldn’t have mattered anyway because those charlatans are suckling the neoliberal teat that Clinton promises to continue and Sanders threatened to remove. So the BMC got Clinton nominated and can now explain to their brothers and sisters and children how the Democratic Party’s anti-humanistic neoliberal policies benefit the African American community.

  7. Ignacio

    Hardly anybody recalls that besides Blair, Mr. Bush found in José María Aznar another ally and there is an infamous picture of the three elements taken in a meeting in Azores Islands just before the invasion. In Spain we didn’t need a Chilcot report and Aznar was ousted in the next elections just after the terrorist attack in Madrid 11th May 2003, when Aznar tried so hard to link with ETA (basque terrorists) in a stupid attempt to avoid linking it with islamist radicals and the invasion of Irak before the election, helping to convert Spain in a target.

    Said this, I feel some envy about the Chilcot report that would have never be written in Spain

    1. Jim Haygood

      When “Aznar cabron” was ousted, some of us took hope that maybe, finally, Europe would expel its American occupiers and decommission NATO.

      Hope didn’t last long. NATO is bigger and badder than ever, amping up its provocations in eastern Europe as we speak.

      Europe’s postwar alliance with the US was supposed to end the cycle of bloody conflicts that swept the continent. Instead, this militarily aggressive alliance seems hell-bent on starting another European war.

      Europe has no hope if it doesn’t expel its belligerent American occupiers.

    2. ira

      Legend has it that Blair asked Aznar what percent of the Spanish population supported his decision to join in the attack on Iraq. Aznar replied only about 5% (which is accurate). Blair then retorted, ´José, there are more than 5% that believe that Elvis is still alive.´

  8. Ed

    ” And what happened to Oklahoma governor, who seemed to be an interesting choice? ”

    Why? I’m genuinely curious. I just went to her Wikipedia page and she seems as nuts as all the rest.

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      Vice presidents (unless of course the president dies) mainly get sent to attend funerals. So the point is optics.

      IMHO unless he can get a governor in a swing state (and that Indiana governor is so terrible I’m not sure he’s worth the baggage), the OK governor would probably help Trump land some suburban/exurban Republican women voters.

      Lambert prefers the Iowa governor because she has castrated hogs. But she is 69.

      1. Pirmann

        Agree on “optics”. Trump’s VP pick absolutely must be a woman or minority.

        I’d pick former AZ governor Jan Brewer. She can speak to the immigration issues facing border states, go after H, and she checks the aforementioned box.

        1. cwaltz

          I personally think she’d be a horrible choice.

          Crazy and xenophobic with crazy and xenophobic is redundant.

          I personally think he should go with one of the generals he’s got picked. He’s going to need to some gravitas on foreign policy and Hillary’s I’ll keep you safe from brown people schtick. The general who worked in intelligence is promising because HE, not Trump, can pound the Hillary email drum over and over and be credible on it in a way Trump isn’t able to do effectively.

          Not that ANYONE would get me to vote Trump(just like Hillary has zero chance of my vote too.)

          1. Arizona Slim

            Look on the bright side. If Trump chose Brewer for VP, he wouldn’t get a single Latino vote. Not one.

            Reason: Arizona’s SB 1070. Signed into law in 2010 by Brewer. Also known as the “Papers Please” law.

      2. EndOfTheWorld

        Yves, if you are referring to IA SENATOR Joni Ernst, she is about 46. If you are referring to IA governor Terry Branstad, HE is indeed 69. But Joni Ernst was the one who achieved fame for her hog-castrating remarks while campaigning.

        1. Yves Smith Post author

          Aha, got that wrong! Thanks for the correction! Heard about the hog castrating IA candidate only from Lambert, and weirdly a Google for the IA governor turned up Terry Branstad with an implausibly young female picture. I assumed it was outdated but maybe a second wife?

      3. sleepy

        The Iowa pol who has castrated hogs is 46 yr. old US senator Joni Ernst. The current Iowa governor is 69 yr. old Terry Branstad, a career lawyer who I doubt has ever been near a live hog save for campaign photo ops and county fairs.

        1. Lambert Strether

          Branstad is a horrible human being who privatized Medicaid (more). Of course the horrible human beings at Obama’s HHS gave him a waiver. Because markets.

            1. EndOfTheWorld

              I think Joni was the one Trump was considering for veep because female PLUS retired LT COL national guard. She won’t get it—just a name being floated around.

  9. Roger Smith

    Does anyone know if the Clinton/Sanders event is being streamed live and where? I thought CSPAN would have it but they appear to be devoting the day to the Lynch hearing.

    1. Pirmann

      Yes… I need to tune in to hear about all these concessions and party platform amendments Sanders managed to negotiate in exchange for his support.

      1. Roger Smith

        Crowd looks to be mostly Clinton folks.

        So far it has been a boring cheer campaign. Fear Trump… etc…. whatever.

        They just came out together.

      2. Roger Smith

        Last one: He officially endorsed her. Congratulated her for winning the “democratic nominating process”. Said he would do everything he could to make sure she wins.

        Absurd. Promise or not, he went over and above the type of endorsement he could have made instead. He went all in.

        1. Pat

          Yeah, just read a few quotes elsewhere.

          But then mine would have been: “We are faced with a horrible decision in November. Both major candidates are unfit for the office of President. I believe that Hillary Clinton is a modicum better than Donald Trump. You must make that decision for yourself. It is up to them to convince people who really is the lesser of the two evils you have been presented with. America deserves better, god help us all.”

        2. Pat

          And it still won’t be enough for the rabid Clinton followers (nor I expect for Clinton and her inner camp).

        3. Lambert Strether

          Thanks for watching….

          And although I hate to parse words, that’s not an endorsement. I’ll see if I can dig up a transcript.

          1. Roger Smith

            CSPAN has that handy transcript tool…. that never seems to work when I need it for something.

            I look forward to a second look and your interpretation Lambert!

            I stopped short of his whole speech as well.

            1. rich

              He did not endorse her?

              He said I will do everything to get her elected.

              Six of one, half dozen of other.

              Given his original stance on corruption, cronyism, trade, etc how he could get up there with HRC and expect to have any political credibility when he got off the stage? Did HRC’s platform change? I think not.

              His balloon is out of air.

              1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

                When a celebrity endorses a product, he or she never uses the word, endorse.

                It could be ‘Nothing comes between me and jeans.”

                Most effective that way.

              2. Code Name D

                And does it really mater. The corporate media will call it a ringing endorsement no mater what he says.

                1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

                  Reading the comments here, I see that a lot of former Sanders supporters are reacting – if not exactly the same way – similarly, even without the mainstream media propaganda.

        4. Arizona Slim

          Buh-bye, Bernie! I’m chucking my rally sign and other memorabilia in the trash when I get home from work.

          1. Roger Smith

            Do you have one of the “Future to Believe In” rally signs? Send that mother over my way. I have no idea how people go those! (and I went to two rallies)

          2. Anne

            Maybe you didn’t really get the Sanders message, or don’t understand what revolution is; maybe the problem is we’ve been suckered into believing that the only thing we have to do is vote for the right candidate and whatever happens is up to them, not us.

            That being said, I’m as disappointed as anyone that Sanders has caved before the convention and effectively given away his leverage. But that doesn’t mean the delegates who represent Sanders have to roll over and play dead – they can make some noise, can’t they? It doesn’t mean people can’t protest in the streets, does it? It doesn’t mean I have to vote for Clinton, or anyone, if I don’t want to, or if that’s the best decision for me.

            Sanders may have been – and I hope will continue to be – the face of political change, but he’s also now got to put himself in a position to make the most difference he can from within the Senate. And pissing off the leadership by withholding his support for Clinton is a one-way ticket to a back bench where no one will ever hear from him again. The Clinton crowd is a vindictive one, so what’s the point of killing the chances he can be a force for change in the place where he has been fairly effective?

            What happens next is really up to us, isn’t it? I hope that what Bernie’s been able to do is bring people out of their bubble and made them want to be active in the political arena – made them want to work for change in their local communities, made them realize they can hold their elected representatives accountable, they can push and pull and demand and remind these politicians that they work for us – and that we have the power to fire them.

            I’m not happy that Sanders is throwing in with Clinton – but think about this: if Sanders had had the delegates to be the nominee, and it was Clinton coming out to support him, can you ever imagine that would mean that she would enthusiastically and wholeheartedly advocate for the ideas and policies Sanders supports? Or do you think it would be a case of her being anti-Trump? Because I think that is, in large part, what Sanders will do. His “praise” for Clinton on her college tuition plan was followed by a Facebook post that didn’t exactly carry that same message – I expect there will be more messaging like that, for what that’s worth,

            Sanders isn’t your husband or boyfriend or lover, and so treating him like you just caught him in bed with someone else does a disservice to what he inspired and generated and what we should all be trying to carry on.

            1. rich

              Oh please….stop rationalizing…..he was just sidecarred like an investment gone bad… can’t squeeze good out of evil.

              Just hold your nose they say but most of us hold our nose only when we’re near shit.

              I just unsubscribed from his emails.

        5. Roger Smith

          I’ll also add that she was awkwardly close to him in stage. About 80% of her mass was within his arms pan the way it looked. Very weird.

          Also, by nature of truth and villainy, many of his leading statements were incongruous with the even and people hosting.

          1. optic

            Well, kind of obvious isn’t it? She needed to be able to discretely pinch/poke/kick him off-camera, if necessary.

        6. Patricia

          Why endorse her before the convention? How will delegates and protesters go forward with/from a campaign that’s had all the air let out?

            1. Patricia

              Yeah, that would be Hillary’s reason, but I wonder what Sanders got for it?

              The convention offers the last round on the Dem platform, right? Is that enough to still draw people? It is a frail thing, although useful for initial establishment/clarification of issues for Berners.

              We needed the convention for push-off.

    2. TheCatSaid

      I didn’t see the opening, but Clinton’s speech sounded like she was deliberately using many of Sander’s explicit goals and memes and speech patterns and aspects of how he presents. She also acknowledged him by name many times in her speech (10-12?) and kept using “we”.

      The content of her speech definitely did sound like Bernie had had a close hand in the writing of it.

      What happens next–in the election, and in office if Clinton gets in–is anyone’s guess. It felt to me like Sanders was using the event to get her to commit more to his own policies than she previously had, and to do so in a way that would theoretically put her under more pressure to do what she has now said.

      Maybe most of all, I think Clinton is wanting Sanders’ integrity, believability and favorable emotions to rub off onto her own PR image. I think that’s what this event was really about. It was about a transfer of emotions. Even the physical proximity noted above has something to do with that transfer–like heat transferring by conduction or radiance from him to her, and he agreed to play that role.

  10. jsn

    Don’t forget tricky Dick gave us the EPA too! Republican denialism on climate change and environmental degradation is already in the process of destroying the legitimacy of the party, its lucky for Exon Clinton is determined to salvage that baggage for the Dems.

    1. Goyo Marquez

      Isn’t the moral here that only Nixon can go to China? If we apply that to Trump and Hillary where do we end up?
      – Only the Republican can spend big on an infrastructure plan.
      – Only a Democrat can cut welfare and social security.

  11. vlade

    Re NZ beach.

    It may sound like the Aussie (all beaches are public) is a better way, but there’s a catch.

    I believe that the reason NZ beaches can be private is that (unlike Oz), NZ actually had some sort of contract with the natives (dodgy at times and all that, but still some – and more and more useful as time rolls by).

    Which also allowed for the Maori tribes to own their historical tribal land (such as beaches). That means there always was going to be at least dual ownership (Maori and govt), and Maori could make a good case of the govt limiting their property rights if they were able to sell only to govt (as opposed to have the govt as having a right of first refusal). Once you let Maori to sell to whoever (btw, I believe they can’t sell all their rights – say some tribes have rights to take protected species for specific reasons, and this right definitely can’t be sold), you get private ownership of beaches.

    So more complicated than a simple public vs. private comparison may show at the first glance.

    Maoris got definitely a much better deal than Aborginees in Oz. Arguably, they got a much better deal than most of natives just about anywhere, as my experience (having lived in NZ for almost a decade) was that there was not a huge amount of racism against Maoris – as compared to say blacks in US (note – I’m not saying there’s no racism, that NZ is a no-race-issues paradise or something like that – but it’s much much better than just about anything else I saw).

    A WW2 story (old, but still germane). NZ was acting as a staging and R&R area for US troops. US soldiers wandered to a bar in Wellington, and got upset over dark-skinned Maori soldiers drinking there, and insulted them. Maoris trashed the US soldiers thoroughly and kicked them out of the bar, to massive cheers of their white Kiwi compatriots – who considered it more necessary to try to advise the US soldiers not to mess up with Maoris in the first place, than to even try to “protect” Maoris.

    1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

      When England was looking for a new place to ship convicts and undesirables to (after they lost the US for that purpose) they originally chose NZ…but when the first guys ashore were eaten by Maoris they had a rethink and pushed on to Australia.

    2. juliania

      That ‘some sort of contract’ is called the Treaty of Waitangi. The seabed and foreshore legislation is a tricky issue, difficult to understand from the outside. However, it was important enough to help put former PM Helen Clark out of the running for potential UN leadership and to downgrade NZ as far as indigenous rights qualifications are concerned in that body.

      So, we’re good but not perfect.

  12. Adrian H.

    German leaders are actually probably pretty happy about Brexit – it increases their dominance of the EU. Seems clear they’re going to optimize their outcomes from the break-up.

  13. Samuel Conner

    Is there an oversight in the NYT bond item? This caught my eye:

    “Prices for inflation-protected bonds suggest that consumer prices will rise only about 1.4 percent a year through 2021 — and only 1.5 percent in the five years after that.”

    That doesn’t sound right. Presumably the author meant to say “the spread between the prices of long-term Treasury bonds and inflation-protected Treasury bonds of the same maturity …”. Perhaps the writer assumes that the reader knows that this is what he means, but I wonder if this might be a case of writer not thinking clearly.

    1. Jim Haygood

      “Breakeven inflation” was the technical term the author wanted. It probably violated “4th grade reading level” editorial guidelines.

      But the simplification should have been “yields of inflation-protected bonds,” not their prices which are affected by the original coupon rate.

  14. justsayknow

    Bugs. Over the years I’ve noted a dramatic change. As a child when we took a road trip our car grill and windshield would be covered with bug splat. Now, many decades later, we can go 400 miles and nary a bug is killed.

    Side note: Did you know people in the south would use coca-cola to clean their windshields of dead bugs?

    1. Roger Smith

      Did you know people in the south would use coca-cola to clean their windshields of dead bugs?

      Maybe that is a hint that we should keep it out of our innards.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          Have they all migrated down to Brazil to party with the Zika virus and Olympic athletes?

    2. ChrisA

      I’ve noticed the bug decline as well. When I was a kid the streetlights at night would be engulfed in clouds of bugs. And yellow-tinted bulbs were common for outdoor porch lights in order to cut down on the swarms. The decline I’ve seen in everything nature over the past 40 or so years is discouraging.

      1. shargash

        Speaking of back porch lights, I put a yellow bulb in more than a decade ago. When I first put it in, I would still get a pretty good collection of bugs, despite the yellow. Now, nothing. This year the spouse & I spent the 4th in the Catskills. One of the main topics of conversation was “where are the bugs?” We brought deet and long sleeves — totally unnecessary.

        The decline seems to be very rapid.

    3. Lambert Strether

      > Bugs on the windshield

      That’s a very good point. I remember the same thing. Yikes!

        1. shargash

          There is more to it than that. I live in exurbia on edge of a state park with a lake. Just in the past two or three years I’ve noticed a dramatic decline in just about everything.

          There are no bugs near the porch light, no bugs in the mountains. The bumblebees used to do circuits around the house all summer long. I haven’t seen one all year long. I used to have three carpenter bee nests in my deck. They’re gone too. Butterflies are down, so are fireflies.

          I have 4 flowering apple trees. They were loaded with blossoms this spring. I will get fewer than a dozen apples, assuming the squirrel doesn’t get to them first.

          Granted, this is very local and anecdotal, but I am scared. Next year I’m going to be planting as many flowers as I can. I suppose it won’t help much, but I feel like I need to do something.

          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            I am seeing rabbits and squirrels in my yard that I have never noticed before.

            It could the drought here in California has driven them down from higher elevations (I live part way up a small hill).

            1. coboarts

              I live in the Bay Area’s east bay and there are almost know yellow jacket nests under my roof anymore.

    4. TheCatSaid

      In the Perelandra Garden Workbook Machaelle Small Wright talks about insects as messengers. She said that often when a garden or any environment is experiencing an imbalance, changes in insect behavior are the first things we notice. Her experience in the Perelandra Garden (working consciously with nature intelligence) was that over time the nature of the interaction shifted dramatically. She never did anything to repel or harm insects.

      Unfortunately humans too often “shoot the messenger”, mistakenly believing the inconvenient messengers to be the problem instead of a warning signal of imbalance in a plant, soil or environment.

  15. JTMcPhee

    Re NZers buying beaches: In the Boston University Law School class on “environmental law” (how to avoid, 1973 edition), a precursor to the neoliberal triumph. The prof, who touted his Green credentials for contributing to the briefing for the concerned students’ side in US v. SCRAP,, presented this bit of political economy to direct our thinking. Posit a beach, where many citizens are sunning, watching the surf, listening to the birds, enjoying the moment. Comes a fella with a fuming cigar and a really loud portable stereo. Query: how much should the beach goers have to pay the fella to put out his cigar and turn off his stereo? The “correct” answer per the prof gave the “hedonic value” of the beach experience. Which rightfully should be paid to the interloper. In his microcosm.

    Prof was incensed that anyone dared question his hypothetical’s premise that the thug owned the right to pollute the air with smoke and what most people thought of as noise. Who has the original right? The right to quiet enjoyment of a public space? Or the right to pollute, that must be “bought” to extinguish it?

    Answer of course is a given, however much the mopes who lay about uselessly on the beach, not generating any monetizable wealth, might whine about it. Someone “owns” that right, and it ain’t you and me. And love the relatively new concept of “emissions trading,” the “right to pollute” now a medium of exchange and store of value — I was working at EPA when it came on line, and the corruption and fraud were baked in and apparent even at the start. But careerists in the Agency latched on, and got nice (pretty puny, compared to the billions flowing around) bonuses and some grade and step increases. A few went on to walk out through the door marked “industry.”

    By the way, I was reading a linked item from here to the Marxist Review. Big recent powwow of great Marxist thinkers. All of them apparently just fine with the idea that what makes the world spin is production and consumption, with a bigger slice for the laboring people, GROWTH is a great good! Even if it kills us. But then this is the age of Homo Economicus…

    1. Michael

      That is an awful reinterpretation of the Coase Theorem, one of the few truly great accomplishments of neoclassical economics. The Coase Theorem explicitly examines who has the original property rights. You know you’re an ass when you’re more neoliberal than the Econ tribe. :(

      1. JTMcPhee

        The right belongs, in the end, to the person with the power to take it. Coast Theorem matters only in an imaginary world of laws governing men.

    1. Barmitt O'Bamney

      Don’t know what he’s got to cry about. Now he can spend more time with his pig away from the press corps’ prying eyes.

  16. That Which Sees

    I know Yves and others keep posting the German position:

    Brexit: Huge Spanner in the Works – Negotiation of New UK Trade Deals Verboten Till Exit Complete

    Unfortunately, for Germany they are making two mutually exclusive demands. Article 50 filing and fast resolution.

    Here is a summary of the UK Position:

    Germany is going to have to pick one-and-only-one of these options:
    — Fast, by beginning negotiations ASAP without an Article 50 filing
    — Slow, refusing to come to the table without the unilateral precondition of an Article 50 filing.

    If Germany chooses unilateral coercion and and slowness. The UK:
    — Gains the moral high ground to make their own unilateral actions, such as reducing their payments to the EU.
    — Keeps total control over timing, which will almost surely extend past the September 2017 German elections.

    It’s possible that Merkel is totally overcome by her domestic politics and has no room to maneuver. In which case slow is really the only path forward on the table.

    1. Alex morfesis

      Schaubles last dance…this will be his last election and his oversized ego has not allowed any others to gain the public market share to take his place…the elephant in the room is what does germany look like once he is put out to pasture…2019 will not be a good year to be a german….he wont bow out before the election and wont just be pushed aside…but his health is not perfect and will turn 76 in 2019…

      bedtime for bonzo…

    2. Ahimsa

      Pound plummeting.
      Trading stopped on property funds.
      Carney planning zero interest rates.
      UK scientists not getting a look in for new funding.
      Companies shelving investment.
      Companies freezing new hires.

      I’m not convinced that drawing this out favours the UK over Germany & EU.

      1. That Which Sees

        — Pound reductions helping UK businesses be more competitive. This is a positive as long as “free fall” can be avoided.
        — Property Funds for elite 1% investors going into a slow mode so they can match sales and fund redemptions is not a major issue.
        — Zero Rates, Join the club everyone is headed that way EUR included.
        — Retaliation against EU scientists in the UK (Cambridge & Oxford) almost certain to occur. Not good for science as a whole if the EU continues down this track, but no long term pain as UK has viable responses.
        — Shelving investment and limited new hires. This is also a problem on the EU side. Given the fragility of Italian banks, an economic slow down will blow up the EZ before the UK.

        If the EU drags this out, the UK has the leverage to play hardball and make it worse on the EU side of the channel. Whether you like or dislike PM May, I think everyone agrees her that record shows a “Fight to Win” track record versus challengers and bullies who try to take her on.

        1. vidimi

          yves has shown on several occasions that a cheap pound will do nothing to UK exports due to british industry’s reliance on foreign materials.

          losing euro clearance rights is by far the biggest punishment the EU can dole out.

  17. Carolinian

    Re Flynn, here’s an alternate view that seems quite at odds with the American Conservative column which is apparently based solely on a book he co-wrote.

    Asked if ISIS wouldn’t be where they are today if the invasion of Iraq had never happened, Flynn replied: “Absolutely. …The historic lesson is that it was a strategic failure to go into Iraq.” He added:

    “First we went to Afghanistan, where al-Qaeda was based. Then we went into Iraq. Instead of asking ourselves why the phenomenon of terror occurred, we were looking for locations. This is a major lesson we must learn in order not to make the same mistakes again.”

    In other words while Flynn is undoubtedly fully down with the so-called war on terror and

    Before serving as head of the DIA, Flynn was the Senior Intelligence officer with JSOC, the elite military command that directs Special Forces operations throughout the world: essentially the spearhead of the fight against terrorism.

    it sounds like he is not a supporter of the underlying–and some might say real–agenda of maintaining the hegemon. He opposed regime change plans in Syria and wants better relations with Russia. Perhaps this last is what consistent AC Trump basher Larison is really disturbed by.

    1. Steve H.

      Thank you, Carolinian, I’m taking a closer look at Flynn. On the one hand, loose cannon reformer who’s pissed of some of the right people. OTO “Everyone has a dark side.”

      Enough there to be cautious about assumptions.

  18. schultzzz

    maybe the self-driving car will come with a built-in AI lawyer to help you when you hit things. Or People.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      A self-driving, self-piloting FLYING car that can also go underwater.

      “Our tech geniuses don’t dream big no more.”

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          Kid to billionaire father: I want an electric self-driving, self-piloting flying submarine car for my 10th birthday.

          Billionaire father: I think buying your a college is more appropriate….and probably cheaper.

    2. optimader

      Previous thought.. skip the AI lawyer.. the high bandwidth wifi connection can place a large insurance policy amendment in the ase of an impending accident.. Kinda like highspeed trading.

      1. hunkerdown

        Volkswagen would like to have a word regarding your rooting around in their firmware. Something about trade secrets.

  19. RabidGandhi

    The Politico piece on Theresa May is, as to be expected considering the source, a waste of otherwise valuable pixels: chock-full of gossip on May’s gritty personality but with scant little regarding what specific policies Ms May would bring to no. 10. Then there was this snortworthy formulation:

    But she is no knee-jerk conservative. She has won praise from former Liberal Democrat colleagues for her record in government, supporting gay marriage, legislating against modern-day slavery and human trafficking and overhauling the police.

    So the LibDems vouch for her not being conservative, akin to having Berlusconi vouch for one’s marital fidelity. Yes she supports gay marriage now, having recently had an Obama like evolution, and most notably, Politico forgets to metntion that her overhauls of the police involved revoking UK citizens’ passports on the grounds that they were “against our values”.

    The normalisation of May’s radically authoritarian record in venues such as Politico and NYT has been predictably appalling. Compare if you will the media treatment of May with how they have treated Donald Trump. Trump has said nasty things about immigrants, whereas May has actually done nasty things not just to immigrants but to Muslims born in the UK. But Trump is treated as the bringer of Armaggedon whilst May is treated as normal. The press have learned nothing and forgotten nothing.

    1. Jim Haygood

      “The press have learned nothing and forgotten nothing.”

      Unfortunately, the notion of a “free, independent press” was one of those childhood myths that we would have been better off without.

      If a free, independent press ever existed, it would have been back in colonial days when every paper was locally owned and operated by individual proprietors.

      Today’s corpgov press is best regarded as representing various flavors of PRWire. But the differences stop at the water’s edge: there is only one War Party line.

    2. Epistrophy

      May has identified a number of policies, as I heard her say yesterday:

      – No sharia law – British Laws and values will be supreme
      – Set national productivity targets, rather than financial (aka Austerity) targets.
      – Move investment out of the property sector and into the business sector – put capital to work
      – Make shareholder voting on Executive Compensation binding, instead of advisory as it is now.
      – Break up highly connected (incestuous) Corporate Board membership, introduce more diverse representation.
      – Ensure that the company’s employees have representation on the Board of Directors.
      – Ensure that the company’s customers have representation on the Board of Directors.
      – Take a stronger stance against monopolistic behaviour.
      – Take a stronger stance against tax avoidance by large global corporations, ensure the pay their fair share.
      – Give much closer scrutiny to the purchase by overseas corporations of British companies – in this respect she specifically mentioned the proposed takeover of Astra Zenica by Pfizer which she thought was not a good idea – she wants to ensure that these takeovers are not just for the purpose of stripping assets and enriching a few private equity players.
      – Companies will have to publish the ratio of CEO pay to Average Employee Earnings (she is of the view that this ratio must be narrowed/reduced)
      – Work towards spreading the wealth of Britain beyond London and to the wider country.
      – Control immigration
      – Negotiation of better trade terms with Europe and the wider world.
      – Brexit means Brexit.

      Personally there is a lot of good stuff here that the entire country can get behind. From my reading of this, she basically wants to model corporate Britain after John Lewis, which is one of the great British business success stories.

      1. The Cleaner

        Yes, that sounds quite good to me, though I’m personally pro-immigration. Do you perchance have a link to the speech or a policy statement?

      2. clinical wasteman

        Great, no sharia law! That was a close one. Neither shall the Code Napoleon nor the Constitution of the USSR of 1936 make slaves of Britons. ‘British Values’ can manage that without any help.

        No-one who thinks immigration into the (erstwhile) UK is ‘uncontrolled’ has ever tried to enter, leave, return, live or work here as a ‘foreigner’, even of the most privileged standing within that pariah demographic. The jaws of what’s now the outsourced Border Force have bitten ever tighter since the Enoch-powered crackdown on Commonwealth workers in the late ’60s. Turns out that on-and-off upswings in the total number of entrants are by no means incompatible with making life as an entrant (of, say, 20 years’ standing) perpetual terror at all the various levels of indenture. Ms. May, remember, is the one who commissioned Border Force trucks to drive around places like Lambeth, Haringey, Hackney, and Bristol (all multi-ethnic working class areas with 60-78% ‘remain’ scores despite large-scale disenfranchisement) carrying huge billboards that said: ‘GO HOME OR FACE ARREST!’ I mention this not just because it was a disgusting way of re-terrorizing the already terrorized, but because: how dare Ms May & her officers assume that anyone has a ‘home’ other than the one he or she is clinging to right now?! Let alone a ‘homeland’ that wouldn’t proceed promptly to arrest? (It’s customary, by the way, for the G4S/Serco immigration guards minding the handcuffs on deportation flights to deliver their captives directly to the local Peace Officers on arrival in eg. Kinshasa or Islamabad.) The point about ‘home/s’ matters because, common bigotry aside, this sort of policy bespeaks the true empirical cluelessness of the Property Portfolio class. Has he no bedroom? Why, let him go to his outbuildings! Has he no status? Let him go to his own friendly State!

        But yeah, you’ve heard that all before. So I wanted to draw attention to one of the milquetoast corporatist slogans suddenly adopted by this senior member of successive cabinets whose sole wish was to reflate the FIRE economy (by way of turning the remains of the welfare system into vigilante posse sworn to Make An Example of the recalcitrant poor). Namely, “customer representation on corporate boards”. How do you think that will work out for the zero-hours/outsourced ‘logistics’ workers at warehouses whose ‘customers’ are Tesco and John Lewis, or for that matter for the Tesco and John Lewis checkout clerks whose Appraisal Objectives involve always simpering and grinning at the almighty Shopper however boorish he may be?

        And finally, excuse the Repetition/Repetition/Repetition [], but why, why, why does anyone ever imagine that s/he has more in common with a Human Resources vampire/its Private Equity handler with whom s/he happens to share a ‘nationality’ than with a ‘foreigner’ (whether next door or in the opposite hemisphere) with whom s/he shares a class experience of exploited, perpetually panicked, poor and time-poor life?

  20. timbers

    Hillary feels for us:

    “Hillary Clinton, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, on Monday criticized the replacement of U.S. IT workers with foreign labor but stopped short of offering a plan to fix it.”

    The part about stopping short of offering solutions. Because she wants to cause more of it.

    And it’s not just IT workers. Based strictly on my personal first hand experience only it’s every mutual fund company in Massachusetts (State Street, Fidelity, BNY-Mellon to name some) for every job role they have. The number of Indians replacing US workers from my former neighborhood (Quincy, Ma) is rivaling Quincy’s long history of a destination for Chinese and related Asians.

    I’m sure it’s happening much beyond my direct experience.

    1. Jim Haygood

      Whereas the job Clinton wants — president — is protected by a US citizenship requirement.

      This is the essential fact that fuels the international grifting of her “charitable foundation.”

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        India, China, etc are graduating students knowing these young people can look forward to better paying jobs in the US.

        Why do we graduate students?

    2. Vatch

      Clinton’s statement reminds me of her misleading position on the TPP, which she opposes in “its current form”. In other words, in general she supports trade agreements that eliminate jobs, cause pollution, taint food, and destroy U.S. sovereignty through ISDS (investor state dispute settlement), but the TPP needs to be tweaked.

      Similarly, she thinks it’s a shame that U.S. workers suffer because of abusive H-1B, L-1, J-1, and other visa programs, but she ain’t gonna do anything about it. Her big campaign donors and donors to the Clinton Foundation support these visa programs, and its their opinions which matter to her.

    3. Christopher Fay

      I feel for you being from eastern Massachusetts. And, yeah, I don’t like it, investment companies seeking money from American workers at the same time as displacing American workers. It’s all part of firing your customers for cost savings which has big support from Wall St. analysts. Check Cringely who specializes in analyzing the disfunctionality of the once great American company IBM

  21. a different chris

    >the United Kingdom and its people gained nothing and paid dearly.

    That sentence (in Bacevich’s story) is kindof jarring when the headline of the next story is “UK insists it has ‘no long-term legal responsibility to clean up DU from Iraq’”

    The little people – soldiers, their loved ones – did pay dearly, no argument, but jeeze what about the Iraqi’s?

  22. tegnost

    From the insect article…
    “Scientists cite many factors in the fall-off of the world’s insect populations, but chief among them are the ubiquitous use of pesticides, the spread of monoculture crops such as corn and soybeans, urbanization, and habitat destruction. ”
    When the globl civilization finally does collapse it will probably be from something like this and the empty halls will echo “hooocooodaanoooooed”
    Basically all of those issues wind their way back to finacialization, and when I say I’m worried of a hillary presidency more than any other it’s because of this type of thing and the incredible hubris it entails. See yesterdays post on industry getting in front of vermonts gmo labeling law, and my own personal obsession the “self driving car”. We’re going to do it because after we finance it we’re going to reap vast, indeed incalculable, fortunes from their implementation, and if you don’t like it, that’s just too bed. But nature bats last and they won’t just kill us, they’ll kill their precious progeny as well and that might sting a little. On the bright side this is a barn door sized opening for self flying insects that sting you and inject a dopamine blast that will make you take out your federally mandated “smart” phone and buy a geegaw from amazon. I’d better file a patent claim…

    1. Tom

      In spring times past, my flowering fruit trees would be surrounded by hordes of humming and buzzing bees — quite possibly hundreds if not thousands, Lately, the trees are quiet as can be when I pass by.
      When mowing grass in the past, I’d need to slow down or stop frequently to avoid mowing over the bees as they flitted from clover to clover flower. Today I can mow for two hours without ever needing to slow down once.
      For those who pay attention to things like this, it is nothing less than chilling.

      1. JTMcPhee

        “Silent Spring.” At least that seems to have catalyzed some actual “action,” other than rope-a-dope by Fokksanto and Doh! Chemical and DumPont and the rest, coupled with all those worker and soldier bees in the corporate hive busily doing their capture of the Regulatory Hive and the drowning of outcry and complaint in their Bzzzzzzzzzz of propaganda.

        1. tegnost

          and don’t forget the starfish… in 1910 one could catch a hundred pound salmon off friday harbor, now a big one is upper 20’s….it could easily be too late already and all I hear from my professional class friends is they can’t support trump because they’re worried about their kids. That and we need gmo’s because how else will the world feed 10 billion customers?

      2. JTMcPhee

        “Silent Spring.” At least that catalyzed some actual action from the wider world, sort of kind of like “something was done” about Freon. In the meantime of course, the worker and soldier bees in the hives labeled Monsanto and Dow and duPont went busily about the task of manufacturing that consent stuff, collecting their bonuses for jobs well done, slapping each other on the back with their tiny wings at each defeat of the Regulatory Hives…

        “Every once in a while in the history of mankind, a book has appeared which has substantially altered the course of history,” Senator Ernest Gruen­ing, a Democrat from Alaska, told Carson at the time.

        Bearing in mind the new cynamic, of Homo Economicus, people who hold little bits of the great mass of Power and grip and wield them like death, who live only within themselves and their lusts, and know that even if the planet id going to heat death, it likely won’t happen when they are around to bear any consequences — either from the pain of the general die-off, of from people who suddenly remember a different set of uses for the hand tools of farming and finally organize to express their resentment at being pre-killed by all those little “consumer culture decisions”…

        Well, time to go dust the rose bushes and lay down the pre-emergents and some more Roundup (TM) to crush those annoying weeds, while the neuropathy, maybe induced by the “unintentional byproduct chlorinated dioxins and dibenzofurans” in Agent Orange, thanks to exposure in 1967-68, creeps up from the lower extremities….

    2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Nature abhors a vacuum.

      What is Nature doing to fill the emptiness left behind by the disappeared bugs?

      1. polecat

        Lots of bugs in my neck of the woods……but then I don’t live in HellCorn country either…

        1. Oregoncharles

          Lots of bugs here, too (Willamette Valley), but there are some gaps. We have lots of bees because the neighbors keep them and know no bounds, but there are also bumblebees and hordes of tiny ones I can’t identify (they really like goldenrod).

          But there are gaps – like, aren’t there supposed to be more than 2 kinds of butterflies? We have cabbage butterflies and swallowtails, but nothing else, in a garden full of flowers. We saw little black butterflies in the woods (some sort of admiral?), but not here.

          This kind of anecdotal evidence probably supports organic gardening, which prevails in our vicinity and even, to a degree, in the valley; but it doesn’t contravene the science. That may reflect the impact of poisonous broad-field agriculture. Maybe all that insecticide actually works.

    1. nippersmom

      Cheney supported LGBT rights before HRC did. That’s the closest can come to a policy difference.

    2. Epistrophy

      Since Cheney has no heart (literally), his health insurance policy would be more expensive than Hillary’s. Other than that I can’t think of any differences.

      1. Christopher Fay

        HIllary is a zombie and doesn’t have a heart. Cheney is supplied with fresh virgin blood to stay alive.

    3. John k

      Now, that’s a good question. Just offhand I can’t think of any…
      Invade ME countries? Check.
      Crush whistle blowers? Check.
      Bad trade deals? Check.
      Ignore white collar crime? Check.
      Wait… Don’t remember he thought it a good idea to confront Russia…
      And abortion, I suppose…
      Course, she hasn’t shot anybody in the face… Yet…

  23. Darthbobber

    Just downloaded the study that the Times Police Shootings piece takes its info from.
    1) Its pretty dense, so any take I might have on it wouldn’t be ASAP
    But–2): Its a David Fryer (Harvard economist) piece, published as an NBER working paper: From the abstract:
    “We argue that the patterns in the data are consistent with a model in which police officers are utility
    maximizers, a fraction of which have a preference for discrimination, who incur relatively high expected costs of officer-involved shootings.”
    Oh, dear lord.

    1. WJ

      Am reading it now, but isn’t this concluding sentence of the abstract just not true at all?

      “We argue that the patterns in the data are consistent with a model in which police officers are utility maximizers, a fraction of which have a preference for discrimination, who incur relatively high expected costs of officer-involved shootings.”

      What are the “relatively high expected costs” incurred by officers who shoot people? One major factor in explaining the frequency of police shootings is that the expected “costs” of killing a civilian–especially a black civilian–are not nearly high enough!

      I will respond more after I look at the data.

    2. Katniss Everdeen

      I make this comment only minimally in jest.

      I’d like to see a “study” of the correlation between police shootings and the physical fitness level of the officers involved.

      Watching the Dallas video, I was struck by the number of overweight cops I saw.

      I’d imagine that knowing that you can’t run 10 yards without getting winded or couldn’t fist-fight your way out of a paper bag gets in your head and shakes your confidence when dealing with a “suspect.”

      It seems logical that feeling physically inferior to a person you may be trying to arrest affects your judgement of the “threat-level,” and influences the decision to overreact and use a gun.

      The military has made no secret of the abysmal physical state of current recruits, and I suspect the same is true for the “police.” It doesn’t seem like a serious stretch that, when appearing to be overwhelmed in the moment, an inadequate cop instinctlively reaches for the great equalizer.

      1. oh

        My observation is that most of policemen in the ‘states are overweight. I wonder if they have to take physicals? I know that firemen have to show themselves to be physically fit by taking part in intensive drills.

      2. Oregoncharles

        Interesting point. Seems to me that police used to just physically subdue people with, say, a knife – which means they were willing to risk injury. I think it was in Seattle that two cops were confronted with a woman – a girl, really – with a knife. They shot her. That’s more like offense than fear. But your point applies.

        But there are other factors. The biggest, in my mind, is the impunity, along with the Mafia/omerta culture of most departments. That attracts psychopaths, and I’ve seen claims they’re recruiting them deliberately.

        My son, who works for a big corporation and is subjected to “safety minutes” (the chief danger is electrocution from all the electronics they use, and papercuts), pointed out that it’s partly a gross misapplication of safety culture. Even they signed up for a risk-taking job, they’re being trained to take no risks at all. That’s one thing in most industries, where it lowers the casualty rate; but in policing, it transfers the casualties to civilians. Given that police are trained, equipped, and paid to take those risks, that’s grossly immoral and a worst-case scenario. It basically means they refuse to do their jobs.

        Another big factor is steroids. They aren’t being tested, to my knowledge.

        But your point is a good one, that I hadn’t seen before.

    3. WJ

      I think this study falls under the category “garbage in/garbage out.” Here’s why.
      Of the four datasets analyzed by the study, three were provided by “a select group of police departments” (Houston, Dallas, Austin, several FL counties, LA County). Two of these police-provided datasets are limited to include only those incidents in which the police shot somebody. Hence “[b]ecause all individuals in these data have been involved in a police shooting, analysis of these data alone can only estimate racial differences on the intensive margin (e.g., did the officer discharge their weapon before or after the suspect attacked).” In order to determine the role that race might play in the police officer’s decision to shoot at all, then, the study makes use of an additional dataset, the raw materials of which were also provided by the Houston police department. This dataset contains “a random sample of police-civilian interactions from the Houston police department from arrests codes in which lethal force is more likely to be justified: attempted capital murder of a public safety officer, aggravated assault on a public safety officer, resisting arrest, evading arrest, and interfering in arrest.” In other words, the raw material of the data is ALREADY coded in such a way that more easily rationalizes the use of “lethal force,” and it does so by specifying the particular “arrest code” written up in the police officer’s own narrative account of his/her apprehension of the suspect. This last dataset is in many ways the most problematic of the four, as its material is made up entirely of police arrest narratives written after the fact. And it, combined with the other datasets, produces a paradoxical inconsistency in the relative frequency and extent of force used by police in their interactions with white and black citizens.

      So while a black person is 50% more likely than a white person “to have and interaction with police which involves any use of force,”

      And while a black person is similarly 19-21% more likely than a white person “to be involved in an interaction with police in which at least a weapon is drawn,”

      we discover, with the addition of the last dataset mentioned above, that in “a randomly chosen set of potential interactions with police where lethal force may have been justified”–AS JUDGED ON THE BASIS OF THE POLICE’S OWN ARREST NARRATIVE–it turns out that “blacks are 23.8% less likely to be shot at by police relative to whites.”

      So blacks are more likely than whites (a) to encounter the use of non-lethal force, and (b) to be physically threatened with lethal force (i.e. having a gun drawn on them); and yet–MIRABILE DICTU– blacks are less likely than whites (c) to have lethal force actually used against them!

      The real issue, of course, is what every viewer of The Wire will know as “juking the stats”–the institutionally systemic police strategy of adding or omitting precise and unverifiable details to any arrest record in order to “code” the violation under one rather than another heading, either for the sake of meeting department “targets,” or for the sake of covering one’s ass.

      Because when police shoot people they are first of all concerned to cover their own ass–and are encouraged and abetted in this by their fellow officers and superiors–their narrative of the arrest/event in question will in almost every case be entirely self-serving and self-exculpating. And this will include their coding the suspect’s crime under one of those headings that gives to their own lethal use of force an air of justification.

      The study, to its very partial credit, acknowledges that “police departments willing to supply data may contain police officers who present contextual factors at that time of an incident in a biased manner – making it difficult to interpret regression coefficients in the standard way.” But it is naive in its claim that “It is exceedingly difficult to know how prevalent this type of misreporting bias is (Schneider 1977).” And it is to my lights unwarranted in concluding that, while “[a]ccounting for contextual variables recorded by police officers who may have an incentive to distort the truth is problematic,” nevertheless, “whether or not we include controls does not alter the basic qualitative conclusions.”

      I do not see how this could be the case except on the assumption that the distortions contained by the dataset in question are, however we control for them, mere exceptions to the general validity of the dataset taken as a whole. But it is more likely that the entire dataset is more or less corrupt by design, and hence that no conclusions drawn from its data, either taken by themselves or in conjunction with other, less compromised datasets, are epistemically warranted.

      But that’s just my take. I would be happy to be corrected by somebody who knows better. Specifically, I cannot see how the authors can get away with claiming that, notwithstanding the possible distortions contained in dataset 4, the “qualitative conclusions” of their study hold. I can only make sense of this claim on the assumption that the distortions of the dataset are a bug and not a feature of that dataset itself. But there is no good reason to believe this in the absence of further evidence to the contrary.

      1. fresno dan

        July 12, 2016 at 12:32 pm
        good analysis WJ

        “The officer I was with asked him if he’d seen where the suspect went. The officer picked a house on the block we were on, and we went to it and knocked on the door. A young man about 18 years old answered the door, partially opening it and peering out at my partner and me. He was standing on crutches. My partner accused him of harboring a suspect. He denied it. He said that this was his family’s home and he was home alone.

        My partner then forced the door the rest of the way open, grabbed him by his throat, and snatched him out of the house onto the front porch. She took him to the ledge of the porch and, still holding him by the throat, punched him hard in the face and then in the groin. My partner that day snatched an 18-year-old kid off crutches and assaulted him, simply for stating the fact that he was home alone.

        I got the officer off of him. But because an aid call had gone out, several other officers had arrived on the scene. One of those officers, who was black, ascended the stairs and asked what was going on. My partner pointed to the young man, still lying on the porch, and said, “That son of a bitch just assaulted me.” The black officer then went up to the young man and told him to “get the fuck up, I’m taking you in for assaulting an officer.” The young man looked up at the officer and said, “Man … you see I can’t go.” His crutches lay not far from him.

        The officer picked him up, cuffed him, and slammed him into the house, where he was able to prop himself up by leaning against it. The officer then told him again to get moving to the police car on the street because he was under arrest. The young man told him one last time, in a pleading tone that was somehow angry at the same time, “You see I can’t go!” The officer reached down and grabbed both the young man’s ankles and yanked up. This caused the young man to strike his head on the porch. The officer then dragged him to the police car. We then searched the house. No one was in it.”

    4. vidimi

      the guardian had a pretty good analysis of the study (sorry, don’t have the link) and, basically, they found that the study took the Houston PD at their word.

      1. WJ

        Yeah, I guess that’s a shorter way of putting it!

        I hate this kind of pseudo-scholarly propaganda. Whenever you find an economist writing on a social/political issue, there is a good chance you will find this sort of shit. Did the NY Times at least bother to analyze the argument and its presuppositions, I wonder (I’m not going to read the piece), or did it just mouth the reactionary conclusions?

  24. tegnost

    From the article on the suit against kalanick (looks out window to see if one of his self flying insects is looking at me type)
    “When those facts proved hard to come by, the primary investigator, Miguel Santos-Neves, eventually replied, “One did say that he was enamored with ideas and may be unfamiliar with the realities and demands of the real world.” The supervisor replied, “Perfect.””
    Ok, “enamored with ideas and unfamiliar with the realities and demands of the real world” coming from a unicorn fairy farm where one microdoses and fasts to improve performance is astonishing. Two words for uber and their ilk {“ilk ilk/Submit noun
    a type of people or things similar to those already referred to.
    “the veiled suggestions that reporters of his ilk seem to be so good at”
    synonyms: type, sort, class, category, group, set, breed, strain, bracket, genre, make, model, kind, brand, vintage, stamp, style, family, variety”} or otherwise known as the “looting professional class” as referred to by our gracious host yves….

    “ethical void”, otherwise known as a lanny breuer unit

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      Wouldn’t correct headline be “Obama embraces winning 2008 position on eve of another elections.”?

    2. pretzelattack

      hey, it just took a while for the real obama to be unleashed. i’m surprised he didn’t wait till october, but i guess that might hurt clinton.

  25. JerryDenim

    “One of the smartest investors I know predicted over 20 years ago that World War III would be over the Spratlys”

    China publicly stated over twenty years ago that they were prepared to start WW3 over the Spratlys, but they were also betting that if they built up their capabilities in the Pacific enough the US would deem the Spratlys not worth WW3 and a naval shellacking . The end game for the Chinese is Taiwan. The Chinese are executing their game plan exactly as they said they would. The real question is is the US willing to relinquish dominance of the Pacific to avoid WW3? The fruits of the Chinese concerted espionage campaign during the 1990’s is on full display now. An effort which was significantly aided and abetted by the Clintons in exchange for Chinese government and unscrupulous US defense contractor cash. Specifically Hughes and Loral aerospace.

    1. optimader

      Rewinding the tape further, Prescott and Geo. and one can legitimately argue Reagan were really the progenitors of the satellite and rocket technology rug auction to China.

      I cant fault the Chinese if we are so foolish as to allow politically connected unscrupulous opportunist to give away (taxpayer subsidized) technology for personal gain.
      By contrast, as president, Bush Sr granted a “national interest” waiver to allow a deal to proceed for shipping $300 million of Hughes Aircraft satellite equipment to China in December 1989, overriding sanctions imposed by Congress a month before in response to the Tiananmen Square incident – regarded as a massacre of peaceful demonstrators by most observers. Prescott had visited China just before his brother that February and returned weeks after the Tiananmen violence for talks with officials on several deals, including one for a US company pitching a satellite communications network that would utilize the Hughes equipment…..
      It was Ronald Reagan, after all, who first allowed the launch of U.S.-made satellites on Chinese rockets, after the Challenger space shuttle crash in 1986 deprived the satellite industry of launch alternatives. And it was George Bush who waived Tiananmen Square sanctions to allow the Chinese launch of up to five U.S.-made satellites, three of which–all made by Hughes–were launched before he left office.

      If this larger record is examined, three points emerge. First, all of our satellite transfers have helped China perfect its military rocketry. China’s launching of U.S.-made satellites–worth up to a half-billion dollars in revenue to date–has helped finance China’s own missile-modernization efforts and missile exports to nations like Pakistan and Iran. It also has given the Chinese access to U.S. rocket know-how. U.S. contractors have a natural inclination to tutor the Chinese on what they should do to make their crude rockets precise and reliable (they don’t want to lose their satellites, which are worth up to 10 times the value of the launcher). Anticipating this, State and Defense officials drew up strict rules in the late 1980s covering precisely what information companies could share with the Chinese. These rules required monitoring of all contractor-Chinese exchanges (including discussions) by a U.S. government rocket-engineer enforcement agent.

      Did this prevent militarily useful information from being conveyed to the Chinese? No. But because all exchanges were monitored, there was a clear record of what was conveyed and a concerted effort to keep such transfers to a minimum. Were there infractions? Yes, but when they were reported, senior officials in the Defense and State departments reprimanded the contractors and got them to stop. Yet despite these enforcement measures, a number of key technologies were transferred before 1993. Clean-rooms were constructed in China to assure Hughes’ sensitive communications satellites wouldn’t be ruined by dust, humidity, or major temperature changes before they were launched. And clean-room technology, as it happens, is also crucial in preparing any advanced system for launch, including reconnaissance satellites and complex warhead packages.

      In an attempt to clear up liability for two launch failures in 1992, U.S. contractors also discussed how to improve Chinese payload farings (the nose cone at the rocket’s top that shields the satellite) and attitude and engine controls, which fire the rocket’s stages and keep them and the payload (either military or civilian)
      at the precise angles required for proper functioning. Finally, each launch of a Chinese Long March vehicle helped improve the reliability of China’s intercontinental ballistic missile fleet, since the rockets are the same.

      Republican officials, then, had a spotty record, with the advantage that they worried about it and tried to enforce the law. By the end of the Bush administration, proposals were made to loosen controls over satellite transfers. Whether they would have succeeded no one can know, because the 1992 elections intervened.

    2. Kurt Sperry

      Why would war even be considered vs. China? Has there ever been a large country so dependent on exports? If the PRC do something that would be considered worth war over, all the rest of the world need do is entirely cease trading with them. If others take China’s side, just add them to the no-trade list. It’d be far more damaging than any quantity of conventional bombs. Let them take the S. China Sea and even Taiwan, but make them pay with all their newfound wealth. The CCP wouldn’t last long under the ensuing pressure from within the country. Let the Chinese people do the killing of the regime. War under these sorts of circumstances isn’t just evil; it’s stupid as well.

      1. optimader

        Has there ever been a large country so dependent on exports?
        probably not.. but it is a mutual economic death embrace. Considering the US right now, has there ever been a large country so dependent on imports? Maybe Rome??
        Admittedly , going cold turkey of much of the imports from china would probably be a good thing in the long run

        1. m

          China is establishing relationships all over, using carrot not stick. Our corps don’t need or money and soon neither will China.

    3. Alex morfesis

      The chinese need to taunt america into the disputed islands and waters, orherwise she loses…the non american combatants have a population over half a billion…by blaming “america” China can slowly increment without having to actually fight…if the U.S. navy temporarily (5 years) moved its vessels to the areas surrounding…(ie – indian ocean and lower outer rim arc from indian ocean to samoa), the Chinese and its non existent navy would lose skirmishes to its southern neighbors, which would lead to the chinese communist red army quickly “demanding” america return to keep “its allies” in line…

  26. Sally

    Bernie Sanders has betrayed those that voted for him and those that sent him money. At he end of the day he has backed the Dem machine over the people who he knows very well will suffer from Clintons policies.

    If Bernie was a young 40 something with a political career ahead of him you could be a little more sympathetic. But he is in his 70s. Why does he need to suck up the the Democratic Party? Honestly how much longer will he still be in politics?

    I fear the political populism that hs come up from both the right and the left this year will all come to nothing as the ultimate insider wins the presidency. It will only make people even more cynical, and angry at the system, and see no point in taking part. Bernie should have said he has too much respect for the good people he has met, and will not tell them how to vote. Force Clinton to reach out to them. I suspect many of them will ignore him now anyway. So it’s a pointless gesture.

  27. Epistropy

    Also media leave boosterism is going to make it even more difficult what one of my contacts insists is the High Tory plan to not go through with Brexit…

    May has repeated at least a half dozen times “Brexit means Brexit”. Is she lying? Any details of this High Tory Plan?

    1. Art Vanderlay

      There probably is a plan. I don’t doubt for a second that there are establishment insiders deluded enough to think that such a plan might work. If you didn’t already know that the establishment in Britain have completely lost their minds then today’s events in Millbank should convince you.

      But I don’t think the calculations add up. 138 Conservative MPs campaigned for Brexit. May’s majority in the Commons is tiny. If she tries to go back on the many, many times she’s said “Brexit means Brexit” then how many of that 138 will defect to UKIP? The Tory majority in the House of Commons is miniscule. It’s only 16 thanks to the alliance with the Ulster Unionists. And Tory voters? Overwhelmingly for leave. They won’t forgive a betrayal like that.

      The right wing papers today are full of stories about Tory members defecting to UKIP. The Express (which I realise is dubious) is reporting that there is a “flood” of grassroots members leaving the party and joining UKIP. UKIP are claiming that joiners will face a 14 day wait for their membership to be processed due to the volume. Tebbitt is busy putting the bovver boots to May in today’s Telegraph too.

        1. Clive

          I am almost too weary to add to this (Art, please do not believe everything you read in the papers and, while I love an “establishment conspiracy theory” as much as anyone, the “establishment” lacks agency, it’s not one particular group or body and where Brexit is concerned, there is as much to be lost by one section of the “establishment” as another might gain).

          But back to Lambert’s innocent and sensible question, Millbank is a swanky office complex in Westminster with lovely views of the Thames. It is the HQ of a lot of political shakers and movers, think tanks, lobbyists and similar beltway-esque chicanery. It’s London’s version of the Watergate building.

          Currently being played out there for the benefit of the cameras is an attempt by the unreconstructed Blairites to remove Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn.

          Readers with time on their hands and who are also gluttons for punishment can read all about it here amongst other places.

          1. Lambert Strether

            From the link: “Jeremy Corbyn will be on Labour leadership ballot, NEC rules – live”

            Looks like Corbyn is winning, and the parliament types, bless their hearts, might flounce off and form a new party?

            1. Clive

              Yes, he lives to fight another day!

              Indeed, the MPs (Blairite throwbacks in their ranks) are making noises about a new party, it sounds like an unspeakable bad dream, “centreist”, “soft left” “third way”, “business friendly progressive” — that kind of thing. A bit like the Liberal Democrats. But since there already is (are) the Liberal Democrats, it would have to somehow position itself in a different, but similar, niche.

              Okay, that sounds like a plan…

              1. hunkerdown

                How much risk that the Third Wayists might be content settling down with the LibDems? Based on that LibDems formed a government with the Conservative Party once, it seems to me there would be little to come to blows over, excepting perhaps transfer of seniority.

  28. PlutoniumKun

    Re: Brexit and Yves comments that High Tories seem to think it will never happen.

    I’ve been puzzling over why the markets seem so relatively calm over it. And senior conservatives seem surprisingly united behind May and exude a surprising among of calmness for a bunch of people who have just nuked their own economy and have probably broken up the precious Union. It may of course be the calm before the storm, or it may be that the Establishment is genuinely clueless about the consequences.

    If Yves is right, and there is an internal view that ‘it won’t happen’, I can only assume they have two scenarios in mind:

    1. They can keep postponing the Article 50 application and ‘something will turn up’.
    2. They can terrify Europe, then win some concessions which will allow them to declare victory and stay.

    Both seem wildly optimistic. As Yves has pointed out, Europe seems determined to minimise the political damage within Europe by effectively driving Britain out as quickly as possible. Even if no concerted decision is made, European companies and organisations will simply stop including the UK because of the uncertainty. In the absence of any kind of negotiated structure, this will cause huge damage to the UK’s economy. There must already be thousands of individual decisions being made to not invest in projects, because of the uncertainty. This will almost certainly lead to a severe recession.

    Another possibility is that perhaps they are hoping that May can have a really strong 6 months, then contrive some excuse for an election (I know technically she can’t, but I’m sure someone could come up with a way around the five year law), and that she will use her mandate to essentially ignore the vote. The hope, presumably, is that in the meanwhile many Tory Brexiteers will see the error of their way. I simply don’t see this happening.

    So in the absence of any other ideas, I can only conclude that either the British establishment genuinely knows something the rest of us don’t know, or they really are seriously deluded, in which case Brexit could be even more damaging than the worst case scenarios. Its one thing to break up those bonds, its another to have it done by deluded idiots.

    1. That Which Sees

      I posted on this above. The two sides are clearly talking past each. The UK will not offer up appeasement, and the Germans/EU are demanding it. The Germans *want* this to happen quickly, but the facts are as long as the UK refuses to file Article 50 they have the sole authority to make this take as long as they want. Germany cannot force the UK to file. As long as the UK is willing to play hardball they have vastly more leverage than the German/EU side.

      I am not sure that “deluded” is the correct appellation for the German leadership team of Merkel-Schauble-Gauck. Their home coalition is staggeringly weak. Here is an indicative article from May:

      A weak Germany and a weak EU should make this a favorable and easy negotiation for the UK, but the fact that the supposed German/EU negotiators are so weak they refuse to come to the table is terrible problem trying to drive forward progress.

    2. vidimi

      the US doesn’t want it to happen so that makes it unlikely. it needs a reliable saboteur in the EU to keep it from becoming anything more than a market

    3. Epistrophy

      I’ve heard conflicting reports from the May camp. Some are saying Article 50 before the end of the year, others are saying not before the end of the year.

      There is another deadline looming where the EU rules will change again (link):

      Article 50 must be triggered no later than March 31, 2017 or leaving the EU becomes virtually impossible …

      My understanding: from March 31, 2017, no member may invoke Article 50 without the consent of at least 20 members that also must represent at least 65% of the EU population …

      Welcome to Hotel California …

        1. Epistrophy

          I have tried for some time to verify this pervasive March 2017 deadline, without success. Having read the link you provided doesn’t provide any better clarity. Only a comment within the link refers to another 2014 link that lends support to the March 2017 changes, but without referencing Article 50 specifically. Such are the opaque rules of the Eurozone. I am still no closer to understanding the matter.

          1. That Which Sees

            My question is,

            “How many countries have to approve the new deal replacing the existing situation?”

            I have seen it stated in some places as a simple majority. If so, 14 countries could bind Germany and Belgium.
            — (1) Ireland needs to have a special deal for the Northern Ireland / Ireland border.
            — (2) Countries already financially victimized by Germany . Cyprus and Greece
            — (3) Countries about to be financially victimized by Germany. Portugal, Spain, and Italy
            — (4) The Visegrad Group that needs to stop the German migration policy — Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Slovakia

            That is a pretty easy 10 countries unless I have accidentally included a non-EU country in the tally. Finding 4 more countries that have a reason to sign something over German objections should be achievable.

          2. BruceK

            Below is article 50. IT seems that the qualified majority voting does not apply to the act of withdrawing, only the terms of the withdrawal agreement.

            1. Any Member State may decide to withdraw from the Union in accordance with its own constitutional requirements.

            2. A Member State which decides to withdraw shall notify the European Council of its intention. In the light of the guidelines provided by the European Council, the Union shall negotiate and conclude an agreement with that State, setting out the arrangements for its withdrawal, taking account of the framework for its future relationship with the Union. That agreement shall be negotiated in accordance with Article 218(3) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union. It shall be concluded on behalf of the Union by the Council, acting by a qualified majority, after obtaining the consent of the European Parliament.

            3. The Treaties shall cease to apply to the State in question from the date of entry into force of the withdrawal agreement or, failing that, two years after the notification referred to in paragraph 2, unless the European Council, in agreement with the Member State concerned, unanimously decides to extend this period.

            4. For the purposes of paragraphs 2 and 3, the member of the European Council or of the Council representing the withdrawing Member State shall not participate in the discussions of the European Council or Council or in decisions concerning it.

            A qualified majority shall be defined in accordance with Article 238(3)(b) of the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.

            5. If a State which has withdrawn from the Union asks to rejoin, its request shall be subject to the procedure referred to in Article 49.

            Text from:

            1. That Which Sees

              So…. 14 EU countries can, or cannot, bind the EU including Germany?

              The frustration everyone wants to penetrate is the, apparently deliberate, awful language such as:

              — Negotiated in accordance with Article 218(3) of the Treaty …
              — … obtaining the consent of the European Parliament …
              — … acting by a qualified majority, … qualified majority shall be defined in accordance with Article 238(3)(b)

              In typical language usage 14 of 27 would be a majority. In EU usage, the usual rules of logic may, or may not, apply.

              Is it any surprise that sane countries like the UK want out? The EU can make even a simple concepts like ‘majority’ virtually inscrutable.

    4. BruceK

      May is a very cautious politician, but she categorically ruled out a second referendum and repeated her pledge that Brexit means Brexit, in a speech given when she must surely have known that Andrea Leadsom was about to pull out.

      The next major development is likely to be when Theresa May announces her new government, presumably on Thursday morning.

      One thing to watch is what happens to George Osborne and his supporters. Much of this will play out amongst the junior ministers and PPS’s (Parliamentary Private Secretaries – MP’s who are basically ministers’ bag carriers). I don’t know enough about who is linked to who in the Tory party to read the tea leaves but I should think that to the knowing eye this will give some clues as to what the Tories’ Plan A is.

    5. MLS

      Through my amateur eyes Brexit looks terribly problematic for the UK and to a lesser extent the EU, but there’s no obvious transmission mechanism to hurt the US economy or markets in any meaningful way.

      Regardless, the whole thing will play out over the next couple years, not next week.

  29. Elliot

    Re: insect decline & windshields

    I have a 30+ yr old truck, boxy & un-aerodynamic, and have noticed for several years the lack of bugs on the windshield or grill. True I rarely drive on the highway, but when I do, the windshield stays clean, and that is not how it used to be. Grasshoppers, moths, butterflies, bees, all kinds of flying insects are fewer than they were. I’m glad my travel is killing less of them, but sorry something else is killing more of them.

    1. fresno dan

      I have noticed the same thing. Now, maybe the aerodynamics of cars is playing a role???

      I live in Redding CA now instead of my childhood home of Fresno (I am going back) but the paucity of bees and butterflies in my flower garden is amazing to me. Where are all the bugs??? It is as hot and dry here in summer as in Fresno, so it seems bizarre to me at how few insects I come across. Very troubling…

  30. Heliopause

    “Surprising New Evidence Shows Bias in Police Use of Force but Not in Shootings”

    I didn’t read the study but a quick glance at the article says that it is on a per-stop basis. That is, once they stop you they are more likely to use all methods of force EXCEPT shooting on blacks. If true it suggests that blacks get shot disproportionately because they are stopped more often.

  31. Jim Haygood

    Looks like the Supreme Court is as politicized as the attorney general:

    Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg is escalating her criticisms of Donald Trump amid questions about whether her unsparing assessments of the presumptive GOP presidential nominee crossed ethical lines.

    “He is a faker,” she told CNN from her chambers late Monday. “He has no consistency about him. He says whatever comes into his head at the moment. He really has an ego. … How has he gotten away with not turning over his tax returns? The press seems to be very gentle with him on that.”

    Trump condemned her comments as “highly inappropriate” on Tuesday, according to the Times.

    “Much as I admire Justice Ginsburg, her comments about Donald Trump were wrong and harm the courts,” New York University law professor Stephens Gillers, a leading legal ethics expert, wrote.

    For Supreme Court justices to wear their partisan affiliations on their sleeve is appalling.

    If they want to go all partisan on us, partisan politicians can respond by impeaching justices over policy differences (as some of the Founders in fact advocated).

    An equally appalling possibility is that Ginsburg is lapsing into senility or mental illness. Her behavior is just squalid — a new low for the court.

    1. Epistrophy

      If a Republican Congress and Republican President are elected, this will not be forgotten. She will be impeached or retired, whichever comes first.

      1. MLS

        Much is made about Hilary’s enemies list, and understandably so, but Donald Trump is a remarkably thin-skinned and petty individual. You can bet he took notes on Ginsburg’s comments and, to your point, will waste no time determining how to get rid of her.

        1. Epistrophy

          I understand that the Supreme Court during Franklin Roosevelt’s ‘reign’ were concerned about his power to dispatch them. They overruled him on taxation, from my reading, but only in such a way as to not provoke the beast.

    2. Carolinian

      Surely you aren’t claiming that the SC has been above politics in the past. Bush v Gore actually decided an election rather than just talking about it. It was the Republicans that time.

      But then perhaps it’s acceptable for the Supreme Court to be partisan as long as it hurts a candidate the establishment doesn’t happen to like.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        We are lucky that we are not yet at the point where SC justices endorse candidates, at all levels.

        And it would have been better if we were not where we are now, after the Ginsburg comment.

        I wish she didn’t say that, and I hope justices don’t endorse politicians.

      2. Jim Haygood

        ‘Surely you aren’t claiming that the SC has been above politics in the past.’

        Not at all. If I recall correctly, Ginsburg omitted “sincerely” from the customary closing of her dissent in Bush v. Gore, dropping all pretense of collegiality in a bare-knuckles dispute.

        In polite terms, she lacks the judicial temperament. Arm Justice Ginsburg, and she might take out the other seven in her barely suppressed rage.

    3. polecat

      the ‘Supreme’ senility syndrome….

      Maybe if the Court (in it’s entirety) took medical MJ….we’d ALL be better off for it…..

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Mandatory retirement at 70 would do nicely.

        Not sure if it is good or not for a 100 year old judge on MJ to be the deciding vote in any case before them.

        Just say no to marijuana…in this case.

        1. polecat

          No way Man …They need to loosen up …. dude ! They’re all wound tighter than a rusty clock spring!

  32. JSBA

    Yes, this is the major flaw of the study. It controls for frequency of police stops, which is an idiotic thing to do.

  33. Elliot

    @ Epistrophy

    Rocky mountains/Canadian border, national forest/farmland. My farm is no spray, and with the aid of beehives nearby, my plants have honeybees as well as natives (bumblebees, sand bees, leaf cutters etc)–and butterflies, etc in the lavender & roses & all… but not at the level it used to be in my childhood, when the fencelines were filled with wild roses a-hum with bees.

  34. B1whois

    I am only part way through this excellent batch of readings. (Gracias!)
    I wanted to share my Facebook post, after seeing my friends freaking out:

    I am fighting the neoliberalism that is destroying the US and the world by holding my vote open for maximum strategic use. #MyVoteNotYours

    One thing that I am considering is that a Bernie-facilitated mass movement would be more successful against a self-proclaimed leader of the “Democrat” party than a self-proclaimed rogue candidate representing a rogue party.

    Is this the strategy the Bernie camp is following? Stay tuned, and I hope you don’t let proclamations of who your voting for distract your focus from analysis of the elite power structure. Comrades, I love your idealism, let us meet in this shared vision during these dark times.

  35. jpalmer

    this was posted on my FB page. Anyone know if this is 1. true 2. possible? Just curious.

    FDR played this game. He “endorsed” to keep his delegates and get to the convention. He had a floor fight and WON!!!! Lets pray that this is Bernie’s strategy :) If he didnt go along with this, he would be completely blocked, he would have automatically lost his super delegates, he wouldntve been able to participate in the convention, now he still participate, and even make a speech at the convention in philly :D Politics aint easy, its nervewracking and REVOLUTION WASNT WON IN A DAY! BERNIE ALL THE WAY! ( no war was ever won without DECEPTIVE STRATEGY! )…/160310_POL_FDR-Chicago-Primary.jpg.C…

  36. LT

    “Italy ‘facing 20 years of economic woe’ BBC…”

    Wow. Italy’s plan is to get out of trouble with bankstanomics by luring more bankstas to the country.
    That boot will be privatized in no time.
    Mussolini smiles.

    And I don’t think the plan is to make Italy strong again in 20 years. They will be in debt and that debt will be considered “economic growth” by the bankstas. Those will be gains for the rentiers only. Any gains will go to a smaller and smaller percentage of the people. They won’t ever economically recover in the EZ. Well, the prime minister and his ilk will be fine…

  37. Kim Kaufman

    Thank you for this, Yves. Just what I needed today:
    “Our Greatest Enemy: Optimism The Smart Set (resilc). Your humble blogger warned about this in early 2008: The Dark Side of Optimism in the Conference Board Review”

  38. Kemal Erdogan

    I am happy to see that idiot’s truck is damaged. Don’t know US but It would be about 1000 euros in Europe to fix it, which is good.

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