Links 7/18/16

Dear readers,

Lambert and I are going to focus Links more tightly on finance, economics, and political news than we have in recent weeks. This is not a general news site. By addressing too many topics, we are diluting our focus on our beats. And quite frankly, the quality of comments has also suffered as a result of incorporating too many stories that are well covered in the MSM. So please refrain from “Why did you not cover X?” The general answer is that we are not omniscient and we also have limited resources, and we are therefore not an answer to a wire service. But the specific answer may be, “Because we chose not to”. Please do not ask us to be something that we’ve never said we are or aspired to be.

Baby ducks can learn differences between objects France 24

10 reasons why weights can help burn fat, quit smoking and even help cancer recovery  Daily Mail (Chuck L) MSM catches up with NC health tips.


Sturgeon: I can block UK exit from Europe Telegraph. So this is how the Tories plan to get out of Brexit: make it the Scots’ fault and appeal to the importance of preserving the UK.

EU Said to Study Nuclear Option to Force May’s Hand Over Brexit Bloomberg. Notice that this article appeared shortly after the May devolution ploy (see above). The EU is saber-rattling that the UK can’t keep creating pretexts for delay. While as the article signals, the EU is not likely to go this far, have no doubt that the Eurocrats are looking for other ways to limit foot-dragging.

UK offered Brexit free trade deal with Australia BBC. This article is more optimistic than what the EU treaties say: the UK is not even allowed to negotiate a trade deal until it has left the EU. Not sure how that could be enforced, but in practice, it would seem to mean that all the UK could do is have preliminary talks, and those don’t get you very far. And that’s before you get to practical issues, like the UK has hollowed out its Foreign Office and has no one to negotiate these pacts…which means it will have to hire mercenaries who don’t necessarily have the right expertise.

Jeremy Corbyn’s supporters are so dangerous they took over the Labour Party before they were even born Independent. Chris G: “Huge number of comments mostly from very irritated and articulate non-Trot Corbynites. The only anti-Corbyn comments are 100% content-free.” He also provided archival evidence that she had decades of experience vote-rigging!

Brexit triggers London house price cuts Financial Times

Draghi to ask governments to chip in to counter Brexit fallout Reuters

Pensions stretched to breaking point after Brexit vote Financial Times

Ireland Hits Brexit Alarm in Biggest Foreign Crisis in 50 Years Bloomberg

EU set to hit truck groups with record fine for price-fixing Financial Times

Europe awaits last-ditch effort to save its milk farms Politico

Why Italy’s banking crisis will shake the eurozone to its core Telegraph


Chinese Output Bounce Reveals Bumpy, State-Led Expansion Roubini Global Economics

Beijing censors South China Sea protest Financial Times

Refugee Crisis

All the East is Moving First Things (resilc)


MH-17: Two Years of Anti-Russian Propaganda Consortium News (furzy)

MH-17: Russia Convicted By Propaganda, Not Evidence Paul Craig Roberts (Chuck L)

Turkey. Note that my e-mailed European edition of Politico had as one of its top headings, “Erdogan’s Reichstag Fire”

Turkey coup attempt: World leaders warn President Erdogan not to use uprising as excuse for crackdown as more than 6,000 arrested Telegraph (furzy)

Turkey Instability Strains U.S. Policy Wall Street Journal

Turkey’s Baffling Coup Project Syndicate (David L)

Turkish soliders say they did not know they were involved in coup plot – report euronews (furzy)


What Comes Next After Raqqa and Mosul? Defense One (resilc)

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

Ninth Circuit Panel Backs Away From Dangerous Password Sharing Decision—But Creates Even More Confusion About the CFAA EFF (Dan K)

Imperial Collapse Watch

The Most Important US Air Force Base You’ve Never Heard Of Nation (furzy)

Theresa May: Britain must renew Trident because ​nuclear threat has increased Telegraph

In The Future, We’ll Stop Truck Attacks With the Push Of a Button Defense One. Resilc: “Never ending apps and techno gizmos for sale to DoD and guys in sandals will circumvent.”


U.S. Curtails Federal Election Observers Reuters (Dan K)

The Former Sanders Fans Who Now Say ‘Fuck You, Bernie’ Vice (resilc)

A Hillary Clinton presidency could end up letting Isis and al-Qaeda off the hook Independent (margarita f)

Clinton Maintains 5-Point Lead Over Trump Wall Street Journal

Republican National Convention: Never Trump plots last stand at Cleveland convention Politico. Manafort wants to make this look like Custer’s Last Stand. Will he succeed?

Elizabeth Warren Puts Trump, Pence on Blast New York Magazine

Why there was nothing Buffoonish about Mike Pence’s Dinner at Chili’s Helaine Olen, Slate

Trump’s Ghostwriter Tells All New Yorker. This is based on intense observation in 1985. I’ve known a lot of people that long. Most don’t change but some do. So in isolation, this is not dispositive. Also I can see another interpretation for Trump being uncooperative with Schwartz: Trump had an idea of what he wanted in the book, his childhood was not part of it, and he had given Schwartz a lucrative enough deal that his job was to deliver what Trump wanted, which he apparently did. So this may not be lack of attention as opposed to Trump getting passive aggressive with someone he knew it would not behoove him to order around. Put it another way: Schwartz’s reading would be more persuasive if we’d heard other accounts of Trump being unable to concentrate on things that were important. BTW the charge that Trump lies casually is in a completely different category, since he’s done that repeatedly and often pretty stupidly too.

Introducing the real Donald Trump: A careful plotter and media master who is far more intelligent than he seems Telegraph. A rebranding exercise! Will it work?

3 things Trump could learn from Nixon’s 1968 campaign New York Post (resilc)

Manafort Confirms Christie Was ‘Livid’ He Wasn’t Picked To Be Trump’s VP Weekly Standard (furzy). Manafort is also being uncharacteristically visible (he was quoted IIRCC in the WaPo last week). Another symptom of not having enough surrogates.

Justice department ‘uses aged computer system to frustrate Foia requests’ Guardian (Chuck L)

Black Injustice Tipping Point

Police union head who blamed ‘menacing’ Tamir Rice for his own death faults Obama for cop shootings Raw Story (furzy)

Toy Models by and via @kocherlakota009

This is What’s Cannibalizing the US Economy Wolf Richter

As Rates Sink, Housing Bubbles Rise Wall Street Journal

Why Oil Prices Might Never Recover OilPrice (reslc)

Goodbye Lenin, Hello Bernanke ABC (Chuck L)

A Bank Too Big to Jail Gretchen Morgenson, New York Times

Asset management: Actively failing Financial Times (David L)

Class Warfare

An expert on fighting poverty makes the case against a universal basic income Vox

In Advanced Economies, Two-Thirds of Population Have Seen Incomes Stagnate, Study Shows Wall Street Journal. From last week. Apologies for missing it.

Antidote du jour. A wild-long tailed macaque monkey has adopted an abandoned kitten at Ubud’s Monkey Forest in Bali @planetpics. Your humble blogger has been to the Monkey Forest! Dunno how a monkey can make sure that cat gets fed, though….

monkey forest kitten links

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. Roger Smith

    RE: Elizabeth Warren Puts Trump, Pence on Blast New York Magazine

    I will share my thoughts from yesterday:

    Elizabeth Warren is on another ‪‎Trump‬ tirade on Twitter today**. Here is how Trump needs to respond. He needs to simply connect US frustration over unresponsive government, specifically Congress to her wasting time and tax payer dollars tweeting about [Trump].

    Will he do that? Probably not.

    *Trump, Twitter, Tirade (I like the alliteration here. Sounds like a bad t-shirt)

    1. Jason Ipswitch

      There are plenty of things Trump could do to make him more appealing than Clinton or Warren. But he won’t, because he has the mind of a spoiled fourteen-year old bully.

      1. jgordon

        …which is still preferable to the mind of a bloodthirsty vampire who has bad judgement.

        1. Jason Ipswitch

          Right… because WWIII will be so much better if it starts over a literal dick-size contest instead of a metaphorical one.

          1. cwaltz

            I’m pretty sure the President doesn’t declare war and unlike Clinton, Trump isn’t an establishment politician running on “I can get things done in DC.)

            Also, too Clinton has no problem lying. It’ll be Nuland playing Powell at the UN.

            1. optimader

              I’m pretty sure the President doesn’t declare war
              right, why bother, it’s just a nuisance.

              One of the best attributes I can think of about Trump is that the RNC hate him. if voters want a non-equilibrium condition, that would be one.

              1. Pavel

                You know, the ones Bush asked Congress for before the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, and the ones Obama requested before intervening in Libya, Syria and droning in half a dozen countries.

                Oh, wait…

                1. cwaltz

                  Uh Bush did indeed ask Congress for permission for Afghanistan and Iraq. It wasn’t entirely his fault Congress was filled with idiots(like Clinton) who were gung ho for it.

                  Libya was Clinton’s and Obama’s little clandestine military operation although to be fair she was just taking a feather out of caps of the boys clubs who’ve taken to reeking havoc anywhere that a leader has the audacity to say no to our oligarchy. Syria never became a war and not for lack of trying on Clinton’s part(if you think that Syria’s civil war wouldn’t be happening without us I have a bridge to sell you considering Saudi and several others have been trying to depose Assad(we aren’t even incredibly original when it comes to our stupid foreign policy that insists that any leadership that exists benefit our national interest.)

                  I also feel confident that a Trump presidency will have less of a chance of those little military operations considering Trump’s position on Syria is hand it over to Russia which is not aggressive, as opposed to Clinton who wants to create a no fly zone over a country that isn’t hers to begin with.

                  1. optimader

                    Uh Bush did indeed ask Congress for permission for Afghanistan and Iraq.

                    Lets be clear on this point as it is one of the few requirements in the US Constitution.

                    The US Congress has not made a Formal Declaration of War since 1941….Full Stop.

                    Asking “permission”, passing resolutions, Police Actions , and appropriating emergency funds for blowing up people and places in other Countries is NOT equivalent to a Formal Declaration of War….Full Stop

                    For all the lives and treasure we blow away to the four winds, the US Congress cant even get this Constitutional formality right, and that’s pathetic IMO.

          2. jgordon

            Hillary is more likely to start WW3 than anyone else. As SoS Obama had her in check where she could only satisfy her bloodthirst enough to destroy a few small defenseless states. As president she’ll have Russia and China in her sights.

            Along with being bloodthirsty, she is a corrupt lunatic who has bad judgement. Her corruption is so breathtakingly extreme that she took money via her slushfund foundation from foreign goverments while she was sending them arms and egging America into war against their enemies as SoS. No one unbiased with actual knowledge of her resume would dispute that, since I have only laid out verifiable facts. Would you?

            1. nippersmom

              Agree. Of all the fear-mongering arguments to vote for Clinton “because Trump”, the one that is most baffling and least plausible is that Trump will take us to war. Clinton’s entire tenure at State was rife with war and regime change for profit, including gloating about the results, and one of the few things she hasn’t even tried to be ambiguous about in her campaign is her sabre-rattling towards Russia. Anyone who thinks there is a person in government or aspiring to be in government who is more likely to involve the US in continued and additional wars than Clinton is kidding him/herself.

              1. cwaltz

                Trump doesn’t have a record but if you go by policy positions then I don’t get how anyone gets Trump wants to go to war from “We should hand Syria off to the Russians.”

                Now once he’s in office he may change that position but as of now it’s way more rational then Clinton’s actual record on Syrian intervention and her standpoint that we should antagonize Russia more with “no fly zones” and escalating Syria even more in an effort to depose Assad.

                It’s pretty sad that I have to call Trump the saner candidate on foreign policy and yet here I am saying just that.

      2. EndOfTheWorld

        I think the fix is in for Trump to take a dive and be well rewarded in the aftermath of his farcical run for the presidency. If he seriously wanted to be prez he would not have chosen Pence. Yes, from all appearances, the “master deal-maker” has already made his deal.

        1. Pirmann

          You may be right. At minimum, I took the Pence selection as a sign that Trump is punting on the minority vote.

          1. neo-realist

            I hope you’re being facetious. When have republicans gone after the minority vote in recent elections except to repress it? Unless you’re talking about latinos?

            1. Pirmann

              Yeah, but Trump being an anti-establishment Republican, and BLM not being particularly enamored with Her, I thought maybe there was a chance.

              Although, that being said, I think it’s a two way street. It’s not as though we saw black folks come out in support of Ben Carson’s candidacy the way they did for Obama. I.e., Oprah Winfrey and the like.

        2. optimader

          be well rewarded in the aftermath of his farcical run for the presidency
          Maybe, who knows, but what would he possibly want that trumps (no pun intended) having POTUS on his CV?

          1. EndOfTheWorld

            The next prez, whoever it is, will be a loser. Maybe Bernie or Jesse Ventura could have done some good, but not HIll or Donald. Trump is 70 and doesn’t need to worry about his CV. Being prez is too much like work. Remember, Perot did the same thing. He ran for prez for a while, but when it looked like he could win, he quit. He didn’t want it either. Not the least problem is a prez who doesn’t obey can get killed.

            1. Optimader

              You make my point abt Trump possibly having an hidden agenda for running. I cant think of anything that would be an interesting substiution in his case. Doesnt need money lives the lifestlye of his choice already.
              On the inference of age bring an impediment, the assumption being POTUS is “work” per se is an unsupported notion.
              Maybe it’s “work” to be a good one, but i think Reagan demonstrated its no more work than having a pulse and bit of vapor on the mirror under the nose. For tvat matter, BHO? What work did he actually do

              Given the two choices at hand, HRC is 68, Trump is 70. I am pretty sure HRC ‘s physiological age is no advantage

              1. EndOfTheWorld

                I think the “work” that Trump does with his investments allows him more freedom than he would have as prez. Yes, Obama and Reagan had “underlings” who actually told them what to do. “Talk to this guy, do this, do that.” As a private businessman Trump has NOBODY that gives him orders, with the possible exception of his wife. I think he’s showing signs of being bored with the whole thing, like Perot did. The thrill is gone.

    2. WJ

      All those tweets refocus progressive outrage around identity politics in a run up to the general election. Cui bono? Somehow I think not so much LGBTs or women as the Clinton campaign. I wonder if this sort of thing still works among Dems.

    3. Katniss Everdeen

      I guess it’s just that I don’t find “twitter” particularly compelling. But far from being “decimating” as this “writer” suggests, this “tirade” seems a bit unhinged to me.

      Eight banal “tweets,” all within a minute or two of each other. I honestly used to think Warren was more sophisticated than that.

      All I can see is her furiously thumb typing and hitting send while twanging to herself, “I’m so DARN mad!” I mean, seriously, the bimbo thing again? Zing. Not. Even Megyn Kelly has moved on. Some new material, please.

      And, this is just an observation mind you, it seems to me that the women in Trump’s life are treated far better than hillary is treated by the man in hers.

      1. Jim Haygood

        “All I can see is her furiously thumb typing”

        Now that ain’t workin’ that’s the way you do it
        Lemme tell ya that broad ain’t dumb
        Maybe get a blister on her little finger
        Maybe get a blister on her thumb

        — Dire Straits, Money for Nothing

        For those who don’t know, the non-PC lyrics are a satire of yob culture.

      2. Pirmann

        Hilarious mental picture of goofy Liddy Warren.

        Sigh. Remember when she was Elizabeth Warren?

      3. Optimader

        Twitter is to intellectual discourse as mp3 is to high fidelity.

        It i suppose is a twits(?) venue to express with brevity and immediacy whats swishing around the chemical stew of their frontal lobe to a global audience so they have an opportunity to be on record with a unconsidered comment they can later regret.

        The virtual equivalent of the city park district bathroom wall

    4. jrs

      Well Congress is technically on vacation (they get 7 weeks vacation much longer than usual even, they won’t even pass mandatory two week vacations for the rest of us). So I’m not sure the wasting time and taxpayer dollars really applies.

    5. Anne

      I have been officially tired of Elizabeth Warren for weeks now; it started when she seemed to have forgotten about all the things Clinton supports that she has spent her entire career fighting against, and it got worse when she decided to lower herself to Trump’s level to try to beat him at his own Twitter game.

      Oh, and making fun of what Trump looks like in a hat is not how one fights sexism. Maybe she thought that was better than making fun of his fake tan and his convoluted comb-over. Um, no.

      We really, truly do not need someone going all sandbox/playground in a presidential election, not least because it trivializes and diminishes issues of concern to most Americans.

      1. EndOfTheWorld

        I got tired of Warren when, though quasi-anti-Wall Street, she refused to back Bernie.

  2. fresno dan

    Police union head who blamed ‘menacing’ Tamir Rice for his own death faults Obama for cop shootings Raw Story (furzy)

    Detective Steve Loomis, who made national headlines when he called 12-year-old Tamir Rice “menacing” after the pre-teen was gunned down in 2014 by a fellow Cleveland cop, was quick to get on the phone with Fox News and tell the country that Obama has “blood on his hands.”

    “The president of the United States validated the false narrative and the nonsense that Black Lives Matter and the media are pressing out there to the public. Validated it with his very divisive statements and now we see an escalation,” he claimed. “This has got to end. We need some leadership in this country.”

    I am surprised FOX doesn’t find crack/meth addicts claiming their drug addiction is due to Obama…
    At some point, one has to say that Loomis is representing the viewpoints of at least a majority of the police in Cleveland, which kinda explains how a 12 year old gets shot dead…

    1. vidimi

      i wonder why tamir rice was referred to as a pre-teen rather than what he legally was – a child?

  3. Roger Smith

    Sorry for the double post, but that antidote deserves its own. Absolutely stellar stuff. I love seeing videos of animals reminding us that 1) We too are animals and 2) Compassion is universal.

    1. jgordon

      I think it’s situational. I’m reminded of when I saw the crows snatching and eating the baby ducks after their mother was flattened by a car.

      While I was looking up info about how to take care of ducklings on my my phone, the crows got them. But before the crows descended, I learned that adult ducks would kill baby ducks just as fast as the crows did if they saw them unattended and I wondered if trying to save them was even a good idea at all. Nature is mysterious and abstruse in all the ways she works.

        1. jgordon

          Yeah… Actually I was curious about what the cat would do when the monkey let it go. My money was on it bolting. It never happened though.

  4. voteforno6

    Re: “A Hillary Clinton presidency could end up letting Isis and al-Qaeda off the hook”

    Do these people really think that they can go after Syria, without Russia responding in some way? And yet, we’re constantly being told that Trump is the dangerous one. It’s almost like there’s not a whole lot of thinking going on at those think tanks.

    1. fresno dan

      July 18, 2016 at 7:26 am

      Hillary’s lack of self awareness is just astounding – everything foreign policy wise she injects herself into appears to go belly up, but somehow believes after more than a decade of failure, let’s keeping doing what demonstrably doesn’t work.
      The great American democracy….Clinton and Trump…How is it possible???

      1. none

        Clinton and Trump…How is it possible???

        DWS and friends decided they could play chicken with the voters again. Will it work yet another time?

        1. Arizona Slim

          As for DWS, guess who’s campaigning for her primary opponent, Tim Canova.

          Answer: Bernie Sanders.

          DWS, it’s payback time.

            1. edmondo

              She would just end up as Secretary of HHS. Let her stay in Congress. She’s harmless there.

          1. Dark Matters

            So, afterward, does she wind up in Hillary-if-she-wins’ cabinet, an official in the Clinton foundation, or both, like Huma Abedin?

    2. Benedict@Large

      “Do these people really think that they can go after Syria, without Russia responding in some way?”

      These are the same people who believe a nuclear first strike against Russia is winnable. (Note the simultaneous effort to move US nukes right up to the Russian border via NATO acquisitions.)

      1. voteforno6

        I would say that view is unhinged, but I remember something once told me by a former launch control officer. Apparently there were some senior officers within SAC that were pushing for the U.S. to drop a low-yield nuke in an uninhabited part of Siberia, as a demonstration of seriousness, or something like that. At the time I was thankful that the Cold War had ended.

        1. Ralph Reed (@RalphWalterReed)

          I was a satellite operator at SAC headquarters, Offutt Air Force Base in Omaha between ’84 and ’87 allowed to work with only a secret clearance in a MOS that required a top secret, as an outed Communist proselytizer and closeted gay. After returning from leave in the fall of 1985 proclaimed Cold War victory triumphantly and handed a copy of the New York Times translation of Gorbachev’s UN speech to anyone responding disputatiously. I drove a bright red Toyota hatchback around the base with a green “US Hands Off Central America” bumper-sticker, endured a brief OSI investigation for “Treason and Espionage,” offered re-enlistment in a new MOS running track for the SAC team in Europe after being timed at 6:47 running the mile and a half fitness review around “Generals’ Row” with umpteen flag officers’ quarters surrounding a park, and was separated as a sergeant with an honorable discharge after Christmas in 1987.

          That’s not to say a lot of Strangelovian characters and Rapturists were around but the US generals were part of an academic milieu and not ensconced in some hut in Appalachia.

  5. fresno dan

    Antidote du jour. A wild-long tailed macaque monkey has adopted an abandoned kitten at Ubud’s Monkey Forest in Bali @planetpics. Your humble blogger has been to the Monkey Forest! Dunno how a monkey can make sure that cat gets fed, though….

    I am impressed and amazed that the monkey is supporting the bottom of the cat with one hand while holding the cat with the other. I forget the term for animal empathy, but the monkey seems to understand that letting the kitten dangle would be uncomfortable for the kitten.

    1. low integer

      Your humble blogger has been to the Monkey Forest!

      I too have been to the Monkey Forest and while I was there I bought a bunch of bananas to feed the monkeys, which I put in one of the lower pockets of my cargo shorts. Anyway a monkey must have noticed this because before I knew it, it had latched on to my shorts and was trying to get the bananas. Not being one to instinctually surrender I began to spin around while kind of holding on to my shorts until the centrifugal force had the monkey basically horizontal and in this state (with me spinning at a constant angular velocity) we reached a momentary standoff (with eye contact and everything) as s/he was not letting go. In the end I kind of yanked my shorts while this was happening and the monkey lost its grip. The monkey went flying but was unharmed and the locals got a free comedy routine, which they seemed to enjoy very much. I did end up giving that monkey one banana, as a kind of consolation prize.

      1. abynormal

        BEST morning laugh i’ve enjoyed in years! Thanks!!
        (lucky you didn’t end up ‘streaking’ out there)

    2. jsn

      That cat will have the monkey trained in no time. Cats can feed themselves, but its so much easier to get some primate to do it for you.

  6. honigdachs

    Re: Manafort Confirms Christie Was ‘Livid’ He Wasn’t Picked To Be Trump’s VP

    It couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy!

    1. Steve C

      Ha. Ha. [sing-song]

      The humiliation of Christie was one of the priceless services Teump has performed. The other is blowing a giant breach in the Republican Party. She’s taking on a lot of water. If only Bernie had succeeded in doing the same to the Democrats.

      1. voteforno6

        If Trump actually manages to “win” this election, he might do the same to the Democrats.

        1. ambrit

          If H Clinton wins the election, same result. (What’s the use of complex political parties when most of your infrastructure glows in the dark?)

        2. James Levy

          How might that be? Given that Trump is talking tax cuts, military spending increases, a balanced budget, and “law and order” at home and can’t keep his stupid mouth shut or on point he’s going to be a godsend to the Democrats the way Obama’s fecklessness and need to be accepted by the Elite got the Republicans off the mat in 2009.

    2. Bob

      Rumor had it that Trump was reconsidering Pence late Friday after the attempted coup in Turkey. Had he chosen someone else, it would have been too late for Pence as he had already submitted his withdrawal from the Indiana governor’s race. Now that would have been fun for this Hoosier.

  7. That Which Sees

    More deliberate hypocrisy from the EU:

    The EU is saber-rattling that the UK can’t keep creating pretexts for delay. While as the article signals, the EU is not likely to go this far, have no doubt that the Eurocrats are looking for other ways to limit foot-dragging.

    Right now the #1 party foot-dragging is the EU/Germany. The UK is readily to begin negotiations (staffing issues aside) while the EU is unilaterally demanding preconditions on Article 50 before negotiations can start.

    If the UK is smart and determined (both likely), they will begin taking unilateral steps of their own. Many options are available. One good possibility is:

    “The UK is temporarily suspending its contributions to the EU central fund, until the EU comes to the table to negotiate in good faith.”

    Given that Germay is the only EU nation with enough financial strength to make up the shortfall. It creates a difficult problem that will land squarely at Angela Merkel’s feet. Until Germany sees reason, the UK’ s best option to force them to the table is destabilizing the EU from within.

    And the Chapter 7 EU nuclear option really does not exist, because the UK can counter with their own nuclear option called Trident.

    1. Dark Matters

      The EU is saber-rattling that the UK can’t keep creating pretexts for delay.

      Imagine, this might be a situation where give-and-take is necessary for the EU to achieve its ends. I wonder whether there’s anyone in Brussels who can negotiate without issuing ultimata.

    2. Yves Smith Post author

      Stop making stuff up. It is a violation of house rules.

      May has repeatedly said to the media that she was not going to invoke Article 50 till early 2017, and is now saying “maybe late 2016.

  8. abynormal

    annual spending on lobbying big pharma 2016
    Total for Pharmaceuticals/Health Products: $63,855,119
    Total Number of Clients Reported: 307
    Total Number of Lobbyists Reported: 1,113
    Total Number of Revolvers: 634 (57.0%)

    itemized by corp. at

    Wolf spears it… “But on paper, these soaring sales, based on soaring prices, look good for GDP that the government wants to tout. The price increases look good in the inflation figures that the Fed wants to tout. And investors are soaking up the money, unless a drug company crumbles under the weight of its own schemes, like Valeant.”

  9. windsock

    “So this is how the Tories plan to get out of Brexit: make it the Scots’ fault and appeal to the importance of preserving the UK.”

    If you or the Tories seriously believe that will work, well, delusion must be airborne.

    Consider the populations:

    England 53,012,456 83.9

    Scotland 5,295,000 8.4

    Wales 3,063,456 4.8

    Northern Ireland 1,810,863 2.9

    London: 8,000,000 ish
    Notice how small the “Remainers” population in Scotland and London is compared to the rest of the country.
    The Tories would have a revolt from their own members if the Scots veto Brexit. The English Tories would rather break the United Kingdom that stay in the EU. It would be the English Tories who would demand the Scots held a second indyref just to get rid of them and that veto so they would leave the EU.

    (By the way – I’m English, but not a Tory and I would say they are nuts. I voted for the United Kingdom to remain in the EU. I am, however, relaxed about the result – that is democracy.)

    1. a different chris

      Thanks for a really useful post. I knew there was good population difference, but I should have followed up. Scotland is completely delusional — and that is hard for me to say b/c I like their politics a lot better than not-so-jolly-but-really-old England. If I ever hear again how “Scotland heavily voted for Remain” — the only polite answer is “so the f*ck what…”. See how that goes with $35/bbl oil…

      >If you or the Tories seriously believe that will work

      I don’t think that will work, but I still believe Leave won’t happen. Admittedly the complete thickheadedness of the Remainers (the political leadership, not people such as yourself!) has gotten me a bit uncertain, but I’m staying with that – because the vote was only 52-48 overall… somebody smart (again, not seeing who that is yet man the famous universities of Britain are looking massively overrated lately) can and has time to work with that.

      (but don’t put me down as a believer in the “people didn’t know what they were voting for” crap, a few stupid people are anecdotes, not data).

      (also just because I don’t think it will happen doesn’t mean I don’t think Leave isn’t the best thing to do out of two poor options– a lot of pain now to avoid excruciating pain in the not-terribly distant future).

      1. windsock

        “I rather like the concept of revolting Tories” – nice pun, but try living with / under them… it may change your mind!

    2. clinical wasteman

      Apologies, Windsock if the following sounds dismissive or petty. That’s far from the intention, and I’m exasperated not by your comment but by the disingenuous use of sort-of-similar reasoning in mainstream UK & international media and left commentary most everywhere.
      As briefly as possible (i.e. not very): I agree that the narrow overall ‘Brexit’ majority is not surprising or shaky — especially given the one-off disenfranchisement of the electorally registered long-term ‘immigrants’ with the most to lose, plus an either/or choice corresponding to a deeply felt sentiment on one side but requiring on the other a vote ‘for’ something next-to-nobody loves, i.e. the EU as such.
      I don’t dispute your broad point then, but you make it sound like a lot more of a landslide than it was by reducing anti-Br*xit sentiment to London, Scotland & NI (& curiously also Wales, which outside Cardiff voted the other way). This conveniently ignores Manchester, Liverpool, Bristol, Cardiff — all solidly anti-secession and, gentrification attempts aside, solidly working class, just like Hackney (78+% remain), Lambeth (78+), Haringey (75+), Southwark, Tower Hamlets & ever-vilified Islington. Plus narrow ‘remain’ majorities in most other fair-sized English cities (Leeds, Newcastle, Leicester…) and the 49+% against microEnglandism in Birmingham and Sheffield. Historically justified Northern anger at 35+ years of looting of the North by Southern England, London included, IS an important factor, but Sunderland (a rare reindustrialized zone, “thriving” in relative terms) and Hull seem to be the only big or even mid-size urban working-class areas to have voted ‘leave’ decisively. To repeat, those ‘leave’ voters in, say, Birmingham, Sheffield and Swansea are to be respected, but those were knife-edge results.
      So I very much appreciate your thoughtful tone, WS, but I’m honestly worried by the way the urban working class is being written out of existence as never before, with ‘working class’ being redefined strictly in terms of culture, community and nationality. If the wider urban vote is properly accounted for, this definition implies a new criterion added to the definition of ‘working class’, i.e. ‘does not live in a big city (unless one half of Birmingham)‘. A genuine question, then, for the US-based NC contributors from whom I’ve learned so much: wouldn’t this ‘working class = non-urban only‘ definition be laughed into oblivion where you are, all trends towards gentrification and depopulation notwithstanding?
      None of which is even to start on the huge non-urban middle/upper-class anglo-irredentist element who rarely see an immigrant but eagerly voted ‘Brexit’ and made the campaign viable from the start. Although maybe it is worth quietly repeating that in urban working class areas where there are a lot of immigrants and children of immigrants, most actual immigrants couldn’t vote, but the votes ranged from 60-79% ‘remain’. (And once again, no-one but those few young clowns painting their faces in blue & gold the day after and trying to overturn the result through actually voted for the EU itself.) This does NOT mean Brexit voters in poor and largely immigration-free Northern towns are racist, just that the middle-class racists of the likewise immigration-free ‘Middle England’ demographic so assiduously courted by Tories and New Labour alike for decades will be glad use those votes as a mandate for racist policy. While urban workers who, socially speaking, are deeply attached citizens of their cities, regardless of legal or sentimental attachment to nations, don’t seem likely to benefit much from being reclassified as ‘metropolitan elites’.
      End of rant and end of all such rants on this topic, I promise. (If you want to see it again with more vituperation but better jokes, I also wrote that sort of a version here: []. Countless apologies if I already posted that link in an earlier fit of pique at 6am London time some other night.)

      1. windsock

        Neither dismissive, nor petty…. What shocked me as a Camden (London) Remainer (my borough voted 75% to remain, we are a Labour council and constituency and very racially mixed) was visiting my sister in Kent last weekend. She, her husband, her son, his partner, my niece, her partner and my cousin all voted Leave, in an area where there is not much immigration and where black/brown faces stand out like beacons… on the grounds of “we want to control immigration” and the talk was all about Burqas and foreign criminals. I tore my hair out!

        You are right – EU immigrants could not vote, but non-EU immigrants (from south Asia, the Caribbean, the Middle East, Africa) could. And lots of BME (do you have that in USA – Black and Minority Ethnic) – voted to leave.

        And of course, there were leavers in majority Remain areas and vice versa. The country was split and the majority was not decisively huge, but we (mostly) accept the result. The result over here is being regarded as a two fingered salute and FU to the ruling classes of both Labour and Conservative – the “elites” (I hate that term as so applied)… not realising what it will do is entrench an even more elitist and neo-liberal bunch of bull-shatters. Working class is beginning to lose relevance here – but we definitely have a “lower” class and they will be exploited mercilessly. And I fear because I am one of them.

        The main thrust of my original post was that the Scots might THINK they have a veto… but in reality, England would not be THAT bothered to see them go, especially if it re-inforced the Brexit decision. I wish London could go too (only 5 out of 33 boroughs voted to leave) and we have a bigger population than Scotland!

        1. clinical wasteman

          Thanks Windsock for your patience with my rant, and I agree with pretty much every word of the reply. Actually, right now how it would be hard to overstate how welcome your thoughts and tone are.
          Anyway, agreement includes the point that ‘working class’ may be too awkward a placeholder term: I brought it up only because it’s being used so disingenuously and reductively right now. eg.: In the way that Camden (which should have been on my list of examples) is often stereotyped along with Islington as a nest of yuppies by Commentators who may even live nearby but are in urgent need of a walk through Somers Town to meet the actually existing ‘metro-elites’. (Not even to start on the plan to level the borough’s remaining council housing for an ‘eyesore’-cleansing commuter train.)
          Point taken too about BME Brexit voters (Birmingham & Greater Manchester/Lancashire towns must have been good examples of that; maybe less so among African/Caribbean Londoners given those 75+%’s, or maybe that’s just the people I’ve heard from?)
          The only thing I’d put slightly differently — mostly to clarify for people elsewhere, because what you say is perfectly true as such — would be to say: yes, only the ‘European nationals’ part of the electoral roll was ineligible, but a lot of other long-term legal resident migrants (the ones who may be most in danger if a deal is done with Europe and a sop must be thrown to Nativism) would have missed out anyway, because the parliamentary-type franchise used only admits longish-term documented-legal Commonwealth nationals, whose admission (especially from the non-white Commonwealth, like my brother’s Maaori wife & kids + much of Africa, the Caribbean and India/Pakistan/Bangladesh) has been ruthlessly squeezed over the past few years. So the admirable ’60s generation and their locally born kids were eligible, but not so many of the younger people who come in and cling on precariously for years on one sort of unresolved permit after another, nor any of our likewise precarious & heroically persistent neighbours from non-Commonwealth ex-colonies.
          The one hopeful glimmer for me came from looking around me (Hackney/Haringey border) and realizing how few eligible voters there might be among the people I could see, but then seeing results like those in Hackney, Haringey and Camden that looked like some sort of solidarity on the part of the eligible (I know, only some). That may just be a desperate attempt at self-consolation, but I’d rather risk that and remember that messy social survival is tough and ingenious and sometimes outwits the crassest attempts to declare it illegal.

  10. vidimi

    funny. i called turkey’s failed putsch, whether real or erdogan’s kabuki, as their very own reichstag fire.

  11. Steve H.

    – By addressing too many topics, we are diluting our focus on our beats. And quite frankly, the quality of comments has also suffered as a result of incorporating too many stories that are well covered in the MSM.

    I took a quick sample of previous link-posts and I’m not seeing the part about number of topics. Rather:

    : Number of posts per topic (this election season has been particularly squackworthy);

    : Number of comments per post (amiwrong, having a couple of hundred comments wasn’t standard a couple of years ago);

    : Repeated phrase: “The plural of anecdote is not data.” (Commenters come and go, many of quality no longer post. Also, I live in a college town, every year new puppies need to be trained, but taken as an aggregate it means you never get to put down the mop and just deal with the mature ones. New immigrants don’t know the rules yet.)

    : The only particular topic that pops from the sample is weather. I submit weather is critical to understanding economic variation.

    Wanting to focus and decreasing distractions from what you do that nobody else can do is good and important. There is one other factor that I am concerned may be impacting how you are feeling:

    : The fallout from the DDOS attacks.

    We already know you overwork yourself regularly. Dealing with attack crap can suck the life out of you, and can take a couple of weeks to feel the effects. Don’t let the villains win.

    A valuable resource that NC has are the user-submitted links. I’ve noted resilc myself, there are others I haven’t pointed out but have noticed. There’s a permaculture principle of using control functions rather than power functions (companion planting rather than combine tilling). I know there is much I don’t know about what you do, so specific suggestions may not be appropriate. So let me put it this way:

    Take care of yourself and don’t let the villains win.

    1. pretzelattack

      and dealing with food poisoning on top of it all, while the sheer volume of significant events seems to be increasing.

    2. Pwelder

      Sorry to see this – over the years you guys have demonstrated a fine editor’s eye for good stuff I would have missed.

      And it’s not as if you’ve been dropping the ball on the wheelhouse topics.

      But hey: Two people covering the whole waterfront? Do what you have to do.

      Just don’t kid yourselves that it’s improving the site..

      Take care.

    3. dk

      Yves may be trying to signal to link submitters, to keep focused on the blog’s topics and on the stuff the MSM passes over. If that is the case, heard and understood, at least by myself!

      And ditto Steve H.’s admonition to take care of yourselves (although my philosophies on villainy and winning differ).

    4. Pwelder

      This is not happy news. Yves and Lambert over the years have demonstrated a fine editor’s eye for important items I would have missed. And it’s not as if they’ve been dropping the ball on the wheelhouse topics.

      Guys, do what you have to do. But it’s a loss.

      1. Pwelder

        Sorry for the repetitive post. I thought Firefox had lost the post; turns out NC was just thinking about it.

      2. That Which Sees

        This presidential election cycle has been very unusual in that it has had credible challengers in both the Democratic and Republican Party prairies. Yves & Lambert have only so much bandwidth to give and those two clashes are chewing it up. By this time next year, they will have more room for breadth of coverage.

        To Yves & Lambert –> Keep up the good work and remember, we do agree with you probably 80-90% of the time. However, the disagreements are more likely to draw posts because that is where meaty discussion is possible.

        1. ChiGal

          My guess is that it’s not about wanting commenters to agree but rather to keep it civil and at some point agree to disagree rather than embark on an exchange of ad hominem attacks. There have been some doozies lately. And when did “bite me” become an acceptable debate technique?

          Not everyone can “add value” equally (anything I know about finance and economics i pretty much learned here, nor do I right now have time to research topics other than those I am already familiar with) but hopefully we are still welcome.

          From today’s links it doesn’t appear there is any narrowing of topics.

    5. ambrit

      Please, no matter what you end up deciding, please think long and hard about the feasibility of employing an AI filter. (I know, I know, who’s site is it anyway. Also, I don’t have sufficient excess funds to endow a Chair for the Study of Website Moderation at the University of Magonia. I’m probably up to my knees in it but I consider this aspect of the Art important.)
      One of the fringeyer sites I patronise mentions You Tube, a subsidiary of Google, de-monetizing some of her posts in a manner that raises more questions than it lays to rest. The AI algorithms used appear to be early days yet, designed to be self educating. What is questionable is the nature of the foundational assumptions.
      Another site had been told to delete a video post about the “restored” 28 pages of the 911 Report. The site had wondered whether the US was ready to actually take over The Kingdom.
      There are many ways to suppress dissent today.

      1. Antifa

        It’s long been clear that each party in our oligarchy sees itself soon — maybe this time around — becoming the Party, nevermore needing to take the other one into consideration.

        One ring to rule them all . . .

  12. Anne

    When you add Clinton’s numbers to Trump’s, you don’t get 100%; I haven’t heard a single story about the poll numbers that addresses what the difference comprises. Is it third party? Undecided? Just seems like more of the same effort by the media to pretend/make sure this is a two-person race, marginalize any third-party influence, and just not discuss at all why it is that the major parties’ candidates can’t break 50%.

    I have heard mention – not really discussion, just passing reference to, really – of the fact that these two candidates are the most widely disliked and distrusted in recent history; the media just simply does not want to waste time on quality, in-depth, analysis – perhaps because it just will not entertain the possibility that neither major party is really listening to, addressing or accommodating the needs, desires and demands of the electorate. There is lip service, yes, but both the media and the parties’ establishment seem puzzled as to why that isn’t acceptable, why, for example, Sanders supporters are not being placated with a few gristly platform bones.

    I don’t know that the parties are ever going to get it.

    There seems to be a collective shrugging of shoulders, a what-else-can-we-do? attitude, followed by what has become standard guilt/shaming: that we HAVE TO vote for Candidate X lest the apocalypse rain down upon us. That the apocalypse is the feared end to us all is never, ever, the responsibility of the party establishment that is backing the candidate, the national party organization that is manipulating the rules and fking with the voting process; it all falls to us, at the end[point to this thing, who need to be set up to take responsibility for disaster.

    I’m tired of having arguments with people who tell me I’m wasting my vote, or “really” casting a vote for the opposition. Tired of essentially being told that I can say whatever I want, but I can’t express my opinions via my vote.

    This is not an election about why the candidates should be president, it’s an election about why they shouldn’t.

    1. EndOfTheWorld

      The third parties get support when asked by the pollsters. The Libertarians have a chance of reaching 15% in the polls which would put them in the debates, by the rules. TPTB want very much to avoid this.

    2. jgordon

      I do not think there is anything wrong with voting third party, since to my way of thinking “right” and “wrong” are just egocentric illusions. If that’s what you want to do, go do it. More power to you.

      There is math though. It’s just a fact in America right now that not voting for the candidate’s most viable opponent is at least half a vote for that candidate. But that doesn’t matter. If you are motivated to support the best candidate regards of any chances to win then do that. If on the other hand you are motivated to vote against the candidate you hate/fear the most, then do that instead. Everyone’s motivation will be different of course.

      Just as an aside, I could even see an upside to a Hillary regime: shortly after she’s in office we could all be “glowing”–literally. Wouldn’t it be nice to save money on night lights like that?

    3. James Levy

      Excellent concluding point and I think a true one.

      I’m reminded of what they called back in the 1960s the “credibility gap.” Today, it is huge. Under normal circumstances neither of these candidates would stand a chance against a sentient, competent rival. Mondale would beat Trump hands down, and Dole would kill Clinton.

      Elites no longer do problem-solving. They do avoidance, kick-the-can, and distraction. Clinton is an unindicted felon and warmonger, while Trump is a nasty, narcissistic carnival barker. A reporter on the radio pointed out that Trump had Clinton dead in his crosshairs when Comey spilled the beans, but blew his speech wandering all over the map and completely off the topic. Then he dropped it entirely and has no coherent message going into his convention. To top that off, he and his people blew the VP launch and can’t hide the fact that Trump really didn’t want this guy. Does he even want the job?

      Elites are whistling past the graveyard, which wouldn’t be so bad if it were only they who were going in the ground.

      1. Patricia

        “Elites no longer do problem-solving. They do avoidance, kick-the-can, and distraction.”

        True, so why do we call them ‘elites’? Power-mongers might be more accurate. Hucksters usurpers ass-ets bullies raveners grab-grubs gorgers

        Set next to the working class, they are crude and rude, vulgarians of the first order. As Trump appears, so would Clinton’s mind, if it had form.

          1. jonboinAR

            …’Cause he coulda’ been a contenda’! Many of us desperately need (emotionally or morale-wise, I guess) a viable candidate, viable in that he’s at least somewhat electable and other than frightening to imagine actually as POTUS. Heck! Perot got 15% or something, and he was a kook! He quit in the middle, came back, hooked up with a clearly doddering, though nice, geezer for veep, and got freakin’ 15%! Possibly sank Bush and denied Clinton a majority. Kooky Perot did that! The established party candidates were somewhat weak. What about these two bozos?! Everyone hates them, but their ain’t no one else. If Sanders announced, I believe that the two traditional campaigns would find themselves in a spot of difficulty.

            However, I’m quite heartened by your reporting in the ‘Cooler. It seems there is a long-term plan after all. I’m resisting the urge to run my Sanders bandwagon into the ditch same as I’m resisting the urge as an LA Dodgers fan to throw out my Puig jersey just because he’s slumped some. But gawd I’m scared (not for the Dodgers, but for the nation and the world).

    4. Arizona Slim

      Slim’s POTUS Election 2016 predictions:

      1. The year’s biggest story will be about the low voter turnout in the general election. I’m thinking that it will be at least 10-20% lower than, say, 2008.

      2. Second biggest story? The surprising strength of third party candidates like Stein and Johnson. Methinks that the two of them will get at least 20% of the votes.

      3. Third biggest story? Clinton becomes another plurality POTUS, just like her husband was in 1992 and 1996.

      1. EndOfTheWorld

        “youthinks that the two of them will get at least 20% of the votes.” It could be a LOT more than that if one or both gets in the debates. This would give them more legitimacy in the eyes of the average American.

  13. apotropaic

    A moderator’s view of the comments on any blog is always going to skew negative compared to the public view. My opinion is that comments here have maintained their status among the best on the Internet and that the subtle diversification of views and styles has only enhanced the value of the regular contributors. A tribute to the moderators and the bloggers. I have no complaint if you roll back your curatorial pool. That’s a wholly separate thing. But overall the increase in commentariat is, in my view, a good thing. I’ve lurked, mostly, for half a decade and recently sent $ to support the links posts. I will again and despite your efforts I suspect your popularity will not wane.

    1. inode_buddha

      If you want to asee a real shit-storm in the comments (and possibly have your stomach turned) you should see the slashdot article on why a UBI won’t happen:

      It makes this place look like a beacon of erudite civility, and yet even this place turns my stomach on certain issues. I’m here mainly for the economics viewpoints and education, the Bern, and not so much the social issues. My idea is that the social issues would largely fix themselves if people weren’t under such economic pressure. Hence the need to do away with the whole neolib/neocon thing.

      1. ambrit

        I’m of the opinion that the ‘economic pressures’ are the basic social issue. I suspect this might be a ‘chicken or egg’ question.

        1. inode_buddha

          Yes, very much so re “chicken or egg” problem. IMHO those problems are very similar, or in a category with, the classical dilemma. The classical metaphor was the two horns of an angry bull; grab one and the other one gets you. The classical solution was to find a “third way” (smack em between the eyes) but I would posit that root cause of the dilemma is a flase dichotomy caused (or aided by) partisan framing of the debate. If one can completely discredit the false dichotomy, the dilemma disappears.

  14. vidimi

    re: the editorial changes

    truthfully, i don’t notice a change in the coverage. the large majority of comments over the last six months or so have been in relation to the US presidential elections. lately, i have been largely skipping over those comments as the combination of fatigue and fatalism has taken its toll, but these stories are political so they will still be covered under the new policy, so what won’t be?

    1. Pirmann

      Was wondering the same thing. It’s not as though you had started posting links regarding something like the Michelson-Stenson showdown at Royal Troon. The links offered would seem to fit the broad foci indicated above.

      1. lezmaz

        “And quite frankly, the quality of comments has also suffered as a result of incorporating too many stories that are well covered in the MSM.”

        first thought:

        oh god, it was me.

      2. griffen

        Dueling wedges (not the banjos) at Troon. That made some great Sunday golf to watch. Which sometimes it’s not.

    1. Methuselah

      After reading the missing pages I was astonished how this was mostly covered up by the media. Many headlines even said the release cleared the saudis of involvement! They basically demonstrate that 9/11 was a Saudi Intilligence operation.

    2. Brindle

      Kristen Breitweiser is as smart as they come. She sees the Saudi Arabia / USA relationship for what it is—Saudi Arabia says “jump” and the U.S. political establishment says “how high?”.

      1. Katniss Everdeen

        Kristen Breitweiser is as smart as they come.

        And we all know how much hillary likes “smart.”

        Problem is, she likes all the tens of millions in clinton foundation cash and campaign “contributions” a lot better.

      2. Ivy

        Immediately after 9/11 there were no flights except for those departures carrying Saudis. What investigative work has identified those people and why they were spirited out of the US? Or was that part of the overall suppression of news, links and questions?

  15. EndOfTheWorld

    Re: Former Bernie supporters say “fuck you Bernie.” I’m in that category, and I believe most of his supporters are. I’m glad now I didn’t decide to work for his campaign, although I donated a little money. Hell with him. Why does he have to endorse HIllary? The answer: he doesn’t. I would respect him more if he stayed neutral.

    1. cwaltz

      I’m not “fuck you Bernie”, I’m “fuck you Democratic Party.”

      I have no intention of going quietly into the night just because the Democratic elite say so.

      They don’t own my vote because I supported him in the primaries. I’ll be moving on to the Green Party if the situation stands and no amount of Bernie cajoling me to be “with her” is going to change that.

      1. Brindle

        I was talking to two young people yesterday, a 20 year old man and a 19 year old woman, both Sanders supporters. The man said he could not vote for Hillary in good conscience—the woman said keeping Trump out of the WH is most important and she will hold her nose and vote for Clinton. I’m guessing that this conversation is pretty common among Sanders supporters—how many will not voter for Clinton is the curious number.

      2. sd

        Reported on Facebook (sorry, no link, I’m not a FB person): Sanders sent an intriguing message over the weekend to his delegates asking them to stay focused on the convention because the fight is not yet over.

        Sanders is a scrappy fighter. It might be worth waiting to see what happens at the convention before just casting him aside.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          Sanders: “It’s up to you.”

          That’s like Danny Zuko to his followers near the end of Grease: “You guys can’t follow a leader all your lives,” when Zuk wore his Rydell Hight red letter sweater in public the first time.

          He was saying, “I am going over to your side, Sandy.”

          He was endorsing Sandy’s bourgeois world. He knew his 99%, the wrong side of the tracks, supporters would never do that. So, he said, “It’s up to you guys. Don’t fellow a leader all your lives.”

          Because it’s a movie, Hillary, sorry, it was Sandy who made Zuko realize his mistake, by coming over to his side.

          But this is the real world.

      3. Vatch

        You are absolutely correct, CWaltz. It’s the establishment Democrats who deserve our contempt, not Bernie Sanders. I’m disappointed that he didn’t wait until after the official convention vote to endorse Clinton, but there is a bright side to this. He gave people an extra two or three weeks to switch gears and start supporting someone else, such as the Green Party candidate. I continue to have a great deal of respect for Sanders.

    2. John Zelnicker

      As I understand it, endorsing the nominee of the Democratic Party was the price Bernie had to pay to be allowed to run in the primaries as a Democrat. He could not have run nearly as successful a campaign as an independent.

      1. Arizona Slim

        I respectfully disagree.

        If Bernie had laid the groundwork for his campaign, oh, two or three years ago. I think he would have done very well as an independent.

        As it was, he started too late. And he thought that the Democratic National Clinton (aka the DNC) would welcome his efforts. Wrong-o!

        1. John Zelnicker

          You may be right about starting 2-3 years ago, but that’s really not relevant unless you know he decided to run that long ago and refused to do the groundwork.

          Whether or not he really “started too late” depends on when he decided to run. Or, would you rather he have done nothing since he was “too late” in your view?

          I have seen no reason to believe that he thought the DNC would welcome his efforts. Any evidence that he did think so?

          1. EndOfTheWorld

            He could have run as an independent at any time. It’s too late now to get on the ballots, but I wish he would have run as an independent instead of screwing around with the crooked fixed democratic primaries. I said so at the time. He still would have drawn big crowds because nobody liked Hillary, then or now. Who knows what’s going on in Bernie’s brain? Maybe he’s a little worried about assassination. He’s got that rattling around in the back of his mind. Can’t blame him. Wellstone’s life met an untimely end.

          2. Lambert Strether

            > Started too late

            I can recall some examples of “early calls” from people like BAR and Adolph Reed on Obama; years early.

            Do we have any examples of early calls on “Sanders should run”? IIRC, Sanders was first urged to run by a group including Winnie Wong of Occupy, who had first urged Warren to run. I think if we don’t, then we’re really in “hindsight is 20/20” category.

    3. mparry

      You’re missing the important thing here. He didn’t turn over his donor and email lists. Not to Clinton, not to the DNC. Without those, the endorsement is only a form of words, and if he thinks it’s necessary for him to be effective in the Senate and as an organizer going forward, or if he thinks that pulling together a coalition of anti-Trump voters is a better move than going third party, I don’t see how those are reasons to lose respect for him.

      He may be wrong, and I wish he’d decided to go for the independent run so that I’d have somebody I could vote for in November. But my judgement about balance of harms is at least as likely to be wrong as his; I’m just an observer/voter, and he’s a guy who came damn near toppling Hillary Clinton despite massive disadvantages.

      Meanwhile, he told the DNC and Clinton that he couldn’t deliver our votes or money or labor, and that if they wanted it they’d have to earn it. Our play is to show them that he was right, watch their heads explode, and then see what they’ll offer.

      1. beth

        He didn’t turn over his donor and email lists.

        I keep reading this as if it were fact, but still do not understand why. ActBlue is owned and run by the Democratic Party, isn’t it? They solicited for Bernie and Hillary and have all the data, am I wrong?

        What am I missing?

        1. mparry

          No, Act Blue is an independent organization, though it’s affiliated with the party to the extent that its services are only available to Democratic candidates. And it’s basically a donation/processing platform: solicitations come from a campaign using the campaign’s lists or other outreach, and then are processed through Act Blue, which also provides campaigns with various tools for reporting and fundraising. That is, if you set up an account with Act Blue they may help you figure out your own fundraising program, but you haven’t hired fundraisers: you still need to do make your own asks, to people you’ve identified.

          As for information storage, Act Blue does try diligently to convince people to set up accounts and leave their credit card information with it, but that’s not necessary to donate: people can and do continue to make individual contributions without allowing that information to be kept in the system.

          Nevertheless, of course it does wind up with a lot of information. Not 100%, but a lot. But that doesn’t automatically mean that donor lists are shared between campaigns. Unless there’s a TOS that requires candidates to agree to share their donor information as a condition of using the platform — which I don’t know about one way or the other — one wouldn’t expect sharing, because there are serious limits on the legality of grabbing a campaign’s donor information via publicly-available materials like FEC filings. Campaigns themselves are allowed to share these materials voluntarily, but since they’re valuable assets and proprietary information, you’d expect the default position to be that there’s no such sharing unless and until a campaign specifically greenlights it. If nothing else, a contrary rule would discourage candidates from using the ActBlue system, which is not what ActBlue wants.

          And of course, we also have all the media reports about these lists and their fate, which would make no sense if they were automatically shared with the DNC or with Clinton.

          Besides that, the ActBlue donor information won’t have the granularity of the information derived from the campaign’s email lists, which aren’t on any DNC-associated platform I’m aware of. Again, proprietary information that the campaign can share, but that if you trust the media, it isn’t.

          Does that help? Or am I flailing around muttering about FEC rules and such without actually managing to talk about anything you wanted to know?

      2. Portia

        How do you know what Bernie has or has not given to Hillary’s campaign? And though you say the endorsement is “only in the form of words”, the word “endorsement” is a recommendation. I can no longer believe anything Bernie says, because he himself said of Hillary that you can’t take money from Wall Street and say you are going to make them mend their ways. So how can he advocate for her election and expect her to change? He is dead to me now, and to others I have talked to.

        1. mparry

          I suppose I don’t know it for sure. But IBT and others were reporting it as of a couple of days ago, and no one has reported otherwise since then.

          And purely anecdotally, and with an admittedly small sample size, it’s been striking to me how even though the DCCC was out last week trying its best to fundraise off the endorsement, and how people who were on any other Dem list apparently were getting those emails every few hours, those of us who are only on the Sanders lists didn’t see any of them firsthand. Because, presumably, the DCCC didn’t have the lists we’re on, as they would have if the Sanders lists had been made available. It’s not proof, not standing alone; but it’s awfully suggestive.

          1. Portia

            the dust has not settled, so who knows what they have, and that is beside the whole point, anyway. she’s a freakin trainwreck in the ethics department–and if some hapless Hillary shill happens to call me on the phone begging for money (I have an unlisted number) I feel very sorry for that person.

    4. Roger Smith

      I definitely do not agree with his choice, or level, of endorsement and I think it will hurt his movement in short run, potentially enough to kill the long run.

      However this knee jerk, whiny, sky is falling reaction represented in the article is totally uncalled for. We already have a fatalistic, drain circling system. What is the worst that could have happened? We lost nothing out of this, and maybe gained a little (to what degree, see the first section). He also did say he would endorse the winner at some point.

    5. ChiGal

      Re: Former Bernie supporters say “fuck you Bernie.” I’m in that category, and I believe most of his supporters are.

      Any data to support that?

      Most folks I know are, as cwaltz says, mad at the Dems, not Bernie. And although there has been a very vocal contingent of commenters here at NC with that attitude, there have been others including myself arguing against this stance.

      1. EndOfTheWorld

        I mean “fuck you” insofar as I’m not voting for the Hildabeast, no matter what Bernie or anybody else on the planet Earth says. I don’t mean “fuck you” in the sense that I hate the old dude. But I would like it if he stayed away from Hill. I don’t know the numbers, but I’m guessing that most Bernie supporters will either vote third party, Trump or stay home, unless she comes out with a full-blast plan to legalize pot.

    6. Arizona Slim

      I did some volunteering for — and donating to — Bernie’s campaign. And I’m glad that the campaign didn’t get any more from me than it got.

      I do feel for a couple of friends who hosted phone banks and donated up to the federal limit. Yup, they both gave $2,700 to the Bern. Talk about throwing your money away.

      Then there’s a neighbor who opened her home to the Sanders campaign. For three months, her kitchen and living room were the Tucson HQ. She also hosted phone banks. I’ll bet she’s feeling a bit ticked off right now.

      1. Solar Hero

        You shouldn’t “feel” for any of those people — they should not feel ticked off, and if they do what they should really be feeling is embarrassed for being so politically naive (Sanders ran as a Democrat, agreed to endorse the winner, etc.)

      2. ocop

        I didn’t donate the full $2700 but got well over halfway there in dribs and drabs of $20 – $100 increments to keep Clinton under fire. And I did so with the expectation that Bernie’s chances were slim and that he would superficially endorse Her in the end. It was painfully obvious he was originally running a protest candidacy and just hadn’t expected to get the traction he did.

        However, even though his hostile takeover of the Democratic party was unsuccessful, his campaign was (and potentially still is, “new organizations” dependent) the most substantial movement for basic good governance (even more so than Leftist ideas) I can remember in my entire limited (30 years old) political memory. In that sense while generally disappointed I don’t consider that a bad investment or anything to be embarrassed about. Change takes time, but Trump’s vicious Lord of the Flies ascension probably unfairly scrambled expectations.

        That said I would apoplectic if the list goes to the DNC or Clinton campaign.

    7. rufus magister

      My wife is active in the local Sandersista partkom here in So. Jersey. Myself, I’m a long-time SWP voter.

      She is leaning Green. She was reading through comments about the endorsement on a local message board. Many folks were registered Democrats, they got what they signed on for, a primary fight but support the nominee. Which is what Sanders always said he would do. So no problem with Mrs. Clinton.

      This contrasted with the aktiv, whom she felt were evenly split between Sanders and Stein.

      As many hoped, Sanders is going to maintain an independent presence. See Politico. The local in our county has reformed as a stand-alone progressive organization, they have yet to formally decide what to do about voting. It is linked to a neighboring county, the activists there are moving into the local Democratic organization. It’s a rural and conservative area, but they are givin’ ’em hell, from what I hear.

  16. Pwelder

    The Art Berman piece from OilPrice is excellent, even for him. But I have a question about his conclusion, where he writes:

    “The oil industry is damaged and higher prices won’t fix it because the economy cannot bear them. It is unlikely that sustained prices will reach $70 in the next few years and possibly, ever.”

    We need the oil industry, unfortunately. Including the guys who are fracking all over Texas. So here’s my question for Berman and for any economist who is willing to look at the big picture the way Jamie Galbraith is doing in the quotes that Berman uses:

    If FIRE profits as a % of GDP returned to pre-Clinton levels, and oil went back to $75, would the combined effect of these changes be such that “the economy cannot bear them”?

    1. James Levy

      How could you reduce the FIRE profits, and what mechanism could be employed to shift them to some other nexus of accumulation?

      Profits are an imposition. Theoretically, I should exchange something with you for equal value. In other words, no profit for either of us other than the utility of the things exchanged. For whatever reason (which no economist has ever explained to me adequately) profits are generated. They seem to be a function of “you need me more than I need you, so I can charge you a little extra and you can’t do anything about it.” So since it is unclear to me how profits get generated, how one might shift them from one industry to another is hard for me to fathom.

      1. Oregoncharles

        I can give you the classical (as of when I took college Econ – a long time ago) explanation of “profit,” which covers at least 3 different things:

        Any net. As a very small businessman, our bookkeeper calculates a small “profit” at the end of the year; in reality, it’s a return to labor (I’m not a retailer), so more of a bonus on salary.

        Returns to capital. This is corporate “profit” when the market is functioning as it should (which isn’t much, these days, or maybe ever). The theory is that use of capital has to be paid for, just like use of labor, resources, etc., to minimize waste and apportion it effectively. In a competitive market, it isn’t a lot.

        Monopolistic earnings (damn, forget the technical term) – the extra you can get by controlling the market. I think this is roughly what Yves and others mean by “rent”. It’s destructive, but nice if you can get it.

        I think this makes it clear just how confusing the word is.

  17. Jim Haygood

    From a Facebook post two weeks ago by Montrell Jackson, Baton Rouge police officer killed yesterday:

    “I’ve experienced so much in my short life and the past 3 days have tested me to the core. I swear to God I love this city but I wonder if this city loves me. In uniform I get nasty hateful looks and out of uniform some consider me a threat.

    “Please don’t let hate infect your heart. This city MUST and WILL get better. I’m working in these streets so any protesters, officers, friends, family, or whoever, if you see me and need a hug or want to say a prayer I got you.”

    Not seeing protesters as the enemy is a mark of law enforcement professionalism.

    Still trying to get my head around a black police officer living in Denham Springs. When I lived in Baton Rouge a generation ago, Denham Springs had a nasty rep as a peckerwood town. A Japanese exchange student was trick-or-treating in Denham Springs when someone inside a house yelled “FREEZE.” Not understanding the idiomatic expression, the Japanese kid kept advancing toward the front door, and was shot dead on the porch.

    Maybe Denham Springs is different now, and having lost two of its residents on the same day, will look after both their families.

    1. ambrit

      Sorry Comrade Jim, but Denham Springs still has that “peckerwood” reputation the last I heard. The ‘corridor’ from Hammond west to Baton Rouge tracking the I 12 has pockets of ‘Klan friendly’ neighbourhoods. However, the entire Baton Rouge metropolitan area has grown, with a substantial black population increase stemming in part from black flight from New Orleans after Katrina. The ‘race versus class’ argument is pertinent here as well. The unfortunate officer was arguably a representative of the middle class because of the social perceptions involved in associating with the local power centres.
      Finally, this can be seen as an indication of the generational aspect of the shifting of social attitudes. We here in Hattiesburg have a significant population of ‘mixed race’ children now. So far, I have not heard any vocal criticism in public of ‘white’ women with mixed race children. Years ago, such criticism would have been “loud and proud.” Times are changing, but at a glacial pace.

      1. Jim Haygood

        In south Louisiana’s creole culture — as well as the inclusive [for its time] political tradition of Huey and Uncle Earl Long — there’s a basis for a less color-conscious culture.

        Maybe it’s the let-it-all-hang-out weirdness of Louisiana politics that lets exotic flowers such as David Duke flourish.

        It don’t have to be this way. :-(

        1. ambrit

          Creoles in ante bellum Louisiana owned slaves themselves. They were creatures of their times. N’awlins is a country unto itself. I remember being told about the ‘brown bag test’ by a very hip Creole sous chef over drinks with others from the restaurant I worked in in the French Quarter. We were crowded around the ‘straights’ table in the back of a lesbian bar on Decatur Street. (Very good drinks and get a buddy to guard the door for you when you had to use the restroom.)
          As for ‘enlightened’ Louisiana politicos, Moon Landrieu was near the top. His children are following in his footsteps, but not quite as progressive as he was.
          I’ve met and talked with David Duke in the long ago, 1970’s. He was always an opportunist, with a racialist bent. (Being an opportunist is not a sin in Southern politics.) He could pour on the charm when he wanted to. I don’t know whether it was natural inclination or political calculation, but his White Supremacist stance was and is a viable niche ideology. (Look at le Pen, pere et fils in France.)
          As for “let it all hang out weirdness,” nothing, to my mind beats a businessman and local politician I worked for in South Louisiana who had a full size standee of George “W” Bush in the business mans’ office.
          Life can be strange.

  18. mikeW

    Re: Italian Banks…

    I am not surprised. As many pointed out from the outset, the EU is improperly constructed. A common currency serving multiple masters, many with conflicting agendas and the inability to allow exchange rates to adjust or to use fiscal policy as a tool would, and finally has, led to a “circular firing squad”.

    Anyone who says they know how all these pressures will resolve, is in my opinion, delusional. Never underestimate the ability of humans to screw something up, even if they think they are doing the right thing.

  19. Ed

    I completely agree with the tighter editorial focus.

    I don’t have much to add to the reasoning, except that I suspect that a good part of the problem, especially with the comments, was all the US elections stuff. What might work better is slating all that off into its own post and declaring the rest of the site to be an elections free zone.

  20. Pat

    Thank you for the antidote.

    And take care of yourselves. As others have noted here, you and Lambert have been dealing with things far beyond the expansion of the site and its comments. So trim as you need. And I will try to keep random comments beyond appreciation of antidotes that make by day to a minimum.

  21. Joe Freitag

    Several points on the weight training article.
    The key to long term health is developing an exercise program you can do until you are 80+ years of age. Starting and stopping isn’t a good long term plan and running, traditional weight training often lead to injuries. Swimming and biking can be exceptionally difficult to build a routine in many parts of the country. Weight training does not require massive weights or even a gym membership, a $30 set of resistant bands for 20 minutes can be good enough. 20 minutes of squats, pushups and crunches for free can be good enough. A light backpack (or heavy) on your daily walk can be a terrific workout.

  22. rjs

    Yves, i support your intention to “focus Links more tightly on finance, economics, and political news” but i dont think “Baby ducks can learn differences between objects” was a particularly auspicious start in that direction…

    1. Vatch

      Hilarious! I had a similar thought, although I must say that I’m grateful for the link to this particular article. I’m glad that you’re being flexible about continuing to include some non financial links!

  23. That Which Sees

    Here’s another good headline for the Brexit category:

    Brexit minister David Davis: UK can deport new EU migrants and still get good deal on single market access ‘We have a mandate to control our borders and take back control of our country’

    –> Pretty clear that EU bloviation has not moved the UK off the merits of it’s rational position. When will the EU stop huffing and puffing and start serious negotiations?
    –> Can the UK get everything it wants in negations? Of course not, but the UK does have a stronger position that the EU in general, and the EZ specifically. Trade disruptions could hammer Italian and Spanish banks changing their condition from precarious to disastrous.
    –> Will Germany tank Italy and Spain in a less than rational offensive against the UK? At this point one would have to guess that the Germans will do just that. Long term this stance weakens the EZ (and EU) more than negotiation, but Merkel is apparently shortsighted.

    1. clinical wasteman

      It is not, thank you very much, a ‘rational position’ to deport my friends, immediate neighbours and co-workers based on a retroactive decision. If the Government of National Salivation decides to block new arrivals from a given date, those of us (i.e. immigrants/citizens of cities) who are already here and equipped with any sort of a conscience will fight it to the end, but that would at least — for fans of that sort of thing — be a legally coherent policy. Whereas revoking status already granted would set a monstrous and entirely new precedent (ready for application outside immigration law: look to your property portfolios!), and would go way beyond anything they’ve historically dared try on even against the most vilified and defenceless ‘racial’/national/class demographics. Should they attempt it against the highly articulate and (one hopes) organized ‘upper’ (i.e. European) strata among immigrant British-city citizens, there will be hell to pay. Should they attempt it against anyone, there will be hell to pay.
      And just by the way, ‘deport’ is both an exaggeration and an understatement. Most people hounded out of the country (eg. student visa ‘overstayers’ created overnight when a college loses its accreditation) are grudgingly allowed to pay for the privilege of fleeing unhandcuffed, because actual deportation is expensive and also perhaps because Serco/G4S guards have a nasty habit of arriving in Luanda with a deported corpse. But for anyone who can’t afford the plane ticket or is brave enough to contest the order, the sentence is indefinite ‘detention’, i.e. open-ended, unconvicted imprisonment in for-profit internment sites where conditions are worse than in many prisons, plus eventual deportation (chaining and gagging discretionary, handover to ‘home country’ police force on arrival standard).
      NB. No this doesn’t — or so at least I hope — count as immediate breach of the ‘no further rant’ promise above, because Windsock was making a considered point with which I partly disagreed, whereas this is a reply to an idea (‘rational retroactive deportation’) whose practical implications are truly brutal, though of course I accept that TWS may not have meant to endorse those consequences.

      1. That Which Sees

        The UK wants stability, and kicking out skilled workers in various fields is a straw man that has been set-up by people who want to whip up frenzy on the subject. There is no reason to believe that mass deportation of employed individuals is in the cards for the UK.

        Rational UK-EU negotiations will almost certainly result in a formula such as this:
        — 1) Guarantee the right to stay in the UK to EU citizens if they were present and working on the Brexit Vote Date
        — 2) Allow the UK to pre-screen EU citizens arriving for work and other permanent migration from the final exit date and onward
        — 3) Allow the UK (within negotiated limits) to screen and exclude EU Citizens arriving between the Brexit Vote date and the final exit date — Necessary to avoid a rush to clear the border by the exit date.
        — 4) Criminally Convicted Aliens and National Security Risks to UK civil society (primarily violent terrorist risks) would be subject to review and exclusion regardless of their arrival date. Probably some negotiated limits around this as well, but there is little leverage the EU can use to force National Security concessions.

        Nothing will change for non EU-Citizens, such as your hypothetical Angolan citizen from Luanda. Nothing will change for EU-Citizens who have a substantial history of gainful employment in the UK. So, nothing monstrous is in the offing assuming the EU actually comes to the table and negotiates so the neither the UK nor the EU economy is harmed.

        If Merkel drives the UK and EU into a 1920’s US style great depression anything can happen, even monstrous things up to and including WWW III. You need to address this concern to the Germans who refuse to negotiate.

        1. clincial wasteman

          Look, let’s just agree to disagree about … most everything really.
          But for the record: that Luanda case wasn’t hypothetical:
          [], although in this instance it was G4S specifically, not Serco. (The latter name just keeps coming to mind because one of their private prison vans ran down and killed a homeless acquaintance of mine in Brixton a few years back.)
          And “they can stay IF they’re ‘working'” (defined how? Check the ‘self-employment’ figures that keep the dole numbers down) … “AND legally unblemished” (UK home office actually monitors for arrest, counts charges followed by acquittal as a migration-status demerit point, and reserves the right to consider ‘civil penalties’, as anyone who ever applied to stay here knows) sounds a lot like retroactive cancellation of status for a lot of people to me.
          I do agree that a lot of Western-European ‘professionals’ are probably worrying unduly about their own cases, but worrying unduly to the point of visceral panic is what you do when you have only one ‘home’ and your status there is anything less than perfectly assured. I’ve been doing that for 21 years come next month.
          And I completely accept (as I already mentioned) that you’re not necessarily advocating anything of the sort, but it was you who applied the word ‘rational’ to David Davis’s deliberately unspecified, panic-mongering threat, which at least as reported included the word ‘deportation’. It was I who pointed out that it’s almost certainly the wrong word as far as Europeans are concerned, whatever stunts the Ministry For Social Self-Harm does try to pull.
          And no, a special exemption for steadily employed, legally immaculate Euro-nationals in the context of a compensatory purge of the internal ‘Dark Continents’ does not strike me as rational or tolerable, not while there’s a drop of degenerate blood left in my body.
          Apart from that, whatever.

    1. edmondo

      Oh oh, who is going to carry the money bags back to the Clinton Foundation after the coronation?

  24. Jim Haygood

    Dr Hussman watches the bull market leave him behind for the 7th year running:

    Our best measures haven’t shifted to a constructive outlook, but enough trend-following components have improved that we’ve refrained from pounding our fists about near-term market losses.

    Instead of pounding his fists on the table, the good doctor now pounds his fists against his padded cell walls … till the tranks kick in.

    Dr H’s annual report claims that his stock picking method has beat the market by 5 percent over the past 15 years. He’s received suggestions to just run a stock fund, minus the disastrous, time-decaying put overlay. But he’s got his heels dug in so deep now that he’s hunkered down, trusting that the inevitable crash will rescue him within his own lifetime.

    1. John k

      He missed the huge rally since 3/09 thinking we would go thru a 1929 type balance sheet depression on account debts higher than previous, not recognizing the auto stabilizers and avoiding bank /saver defaults would arrest the decline.
      I did too, for same reasons, luckily went fully into longest bonds mid 2010.

      I think he will be partly vindicated, sooner rather than later… Note that his charts of bad performance over next decade not yet wrong… He would have done better if he had believed the same charts seven years ago.

      1. Jim Haygood

        Dr Hussman’s forecast of flat performance over the next decade likely is close to correct.

        But even if he nails the prospective 10-year return to the tenth of a percent, it tells us nothing about the return over the coming 12 months.

        As Bubble I demonstrated, overvalued markets can be become even more overvalued before gravity takes hold. Dr Hussman fought that one all the way up from 1995 to March 2000, too. Now it’s deja vu all over again.

      2. Andrew Watts

        If Hussman had acted using 1929 and the aftermath as a guide he would’ve foreseen the rally in March ’09. The bullish rally in March ’30 was about a week apart from the rally that took place in 2009. As numerous commentators pointed out the the Fed and other central banks were dumping trillions of dollars of liquidity into the financial system making any further historical comparisons moot… at least until the European banking system collapses.

        Since Bernanke basically followed through with the very same actions that Benjamin Strong did before the great crash of ’29 I gotta wonder if we’re going to reset the cycle and follow the same route again.

  25. Jim Haygood

    Here come da judge:

    Hillary Clinton’s lawyers are expected to appear before a federal judge Monday morning in a bid to keep her from being forced into videotaped, sworn testimony about her email system.

    In a little-noticed passage in a court filing last week, Clinton’s legal team laid the groundwork for a potential appeal that could allow Clinton to delay any deposition for weeks or months, perhaps even until after the November election.

    “For the sake of preserving any and all rights, counsel to Secretary Clinton respectfully submit that discovery is unwarranted in this case as a general matter,” longtime Clinton lawyer David Kendall and colleagues wrote in a filing submitted to U.S. District Court Judge Emmet Sullivan.

    Legal experts say the language is aimed at keeping the door open for Clinton to try to block a deposition at the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit if Sullivan decides to order one.

    Run out da clock … we shoulda knowed.

    Doubtless Hillary’s valet buddy Comey will submit an amicus curiae brief to the appeals court, sticking to his theme of “let the voters decide.”

  26. EndOfTheWorld

    A federal judgeship is a lifetime appointment, am I correct? Therefore Sullivan should go ahead and make the Hildabeast take da fifth on youtube. Please? Pretty please with sugar on it?

  27. Anne

    Yves and Lambert – and the entire NC community –

    As a refugee from TalkLeft, which has undergone significant deterioration in the last couple years, I just have to say that NC is like an oasis in the desert, not least because you are actually paying attention to what’s being discussed in the comments, and curating links and other relevant topics to ensure the highest quality of discussion. I think people are – on the whole – respectful and open to differing opinions, but I think politics pushes a lot of emotional buttons and sometimes it’s hard not to react accordingly. But it seems to me that people try to leave emotion out of it, and when they can’t, to explain why, and where they are coming from.

    Without question, some of the smartest people gather in your comments section, and it can be a little intimidating at times!

    I can’t speak for others, but while I feel free to comment about things like politics and race and class, I am pretty much petrified to do anything but read about the weedier, wonkier finance and economics posts – but I am learning a lot, and realizing how much I really don’t know at all. It still can seem like gobbledygook to me, but I hang in there in the hope that one day it will make the kind of sense I’d like it to!

    Anyway, I think we are all feeling overwhelmed by events and the choices we do and don’t have; whatever and however NC chooses to bring its collective sensibility, insight, knowledge and interests to bear, I feel better for reading here.

    1. Oregoncharles

      If you can pinpoint what you don’t understand, either Yves or appropriate commenters (probably not me, if it’s deep finance) are pretty good about explaining. It’s extra work, but greater clarity is one of the goals.

    2. clinical wasteman

      + thousands.
      And if I read you right Anne, what you say doesn’t remotely deny the editors’ right to try to to keep discussion from being swamped in digression. I especially agree that the exchanges I feel least qualified to comment on — for me local insights like Jim H. & Ambrit on Louisiana back there — are some of the most instructive & enjoyable parts of all.

  28. Plenue

    >The Former Sanders Fans Who Now Say ‘Fuck You, Bernie’

    What an awful, smug article. But yes, I still say screw Sanders, but not because he lost and endorsed Clinton. Screw him for giving up before the convention. I at least expected him to go down fighting and take it to the convention like he kept saying he would. There would have been value in forcing Clinton to use the anti-democratic superdelegates to secure the nomination, showing what a farce the whole process is. If he endorsed her after that, fine. He’d be wrong in his view that Trump is the danger that must be stopped at all costs, but at least he would have done what he said he was going to do by fighting to the convention. Instead he stabbed his own campaign and cause in the back. It’s all well and good to say we need to continue on and build a movement, but after that betrayal how much air has he sucked out of the room and how many disillusioned people will simply give up?

    1. rufus magister

      Doesn’t seem to me he’s thrown in the towel. According to Politico, he’s establishing three independent organizations. It’s consistent with the message he’s given his supporters — we’re gonna keep this going, but I have my regular job to do, so it’s going to be on y’all..

      My wife is active in the local Sanders campaign, and I’ll even hang with the aktiv from time to time.

        1. rufus magister

          I’ll see what I can do. And my some nice greenery for the water cooler, too.

    2. aab

      And I will reiterate that Clinton and Rendell were going to make that impossible. They had the absolute power to block him from speaking, and make floor votes almost impossible, because they do have the majority, even if she doesn’t technically have enough to get the nomination without the superdelegates. The party, as the leaked documents have demonstrated, has been an arm of the Clinton campaign/Foundation for years. According to Politico, Obama’s been maneuvering for this for years, as well. They’ve been working to decredential his delegates. Many other of his delegates may not make to Philly because they weren’t careful enough to figure out how expensive it is to attend. State parties CAN subsidize delegates, but of course, they’re only doing that for Clinton delegates. (There was been consistent online skuttlebutt that they’ve been trying to bribe Bernie delegates with expense money if only they’ll vote for Hillary.)

      He didn’t concede. Realistically, he has almost no chance, but that’s not because of the endorsement. That’s because of the election theft and Comey and Lynch’s refusal to act. He did the only thing he could to get his delegates admitted, and try to at least make some changes to the horrible system, like getting open primaries across the system. They’re apparently protesting the VP choices, too. Will that matter to Clinton? Probably not. But maybe it’s better than him declaring war and protesting outside with his delegates, probably completely uncovered by the media, while she has her smooth coronation inside.

      You can disagree with his decision, but it’s really unfair to say he stabbed his campaign in the back. You try standing up to a profoundly corrupt, violent, imperial system almost singlehandedly at 74, and then get back to me about how easy it is to keep going in the face of those kinds of threats. They pulled his Secret Service detail even though he hadn’t conceded, and then had Pravda — I’m sorry, that’s MSNBC — announce exactly when and where he would be completely vulnerable. Again and again and again, all day long.

  29. Kurt Sperry

    The London School of Economics and Political Science recently published a paper titled, ” Journalistic Representations of Jeremy Corbyn in the British Press:From “Watchdog” to “Attackdog”. It is both scathing and well researched and argued. The British press is obviously working from the exact same playbook the US press did against Sanders, and large numbers of people are noticing that the press isn’t isn’t anything like the objective, trustworthy source it claims to be. If any large media organization did the unthinkable, broke rank and defiantly went to objective reporting standards and pointed out everyone else was publishing neo-liberal propaganda, they would it seems to me have a large market to themselves–and the advertisers could only stay away so long.

    Report as published by the university in pdf format:

    1. windsock

      As evidenced today by The Guardian – the nearest thing we Brits have to a left(ish) leaning serious newspaper:

      The headline says “Banging on about Trident – it’s Corbynism to a T” – despite the fact that it was the Tories who introduced the Trident renewal vote into Parliament today precisely to exploit the splits the issue causes in the Labour party (and also a Tory actually spoke against it – Crispin Blunt – bloody hell!). If Corbyn did not speak up about it in a Parliamentary debate, when the hell can he?

      And the rules the Labour National Executive Committee have put in place to try to stop him being re-elected as party leader… Well, £25 to become a registered supporter (and it is actually a Labour Poll Tax, but shush, don’t mention that!) is more than a third of the weekly amount an unemployed person gets… but then Labour doesn’t want to represent the unemployed or sick any more..”Well, the clue is in the name really, we’re the Labour party. ” says Tom Watson, now deputy leader and knife wielder. Ugh.

  30. Jim Haygood

    Calpers fesses up … sort of:

    SACRAMENTO, CA – The California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS) today reported a preliminary 0.61 percent net return on investments for the 12-month period that ended June 30, 2016.

    Returns for real estate, private equity and some components of the inflation assets reflect market values through March 31, 2016.

    This announcement is bizarre in a couple of respects. First, stale results for real estate, private equity and some inflation assets likely will have a material impact on performance. Markets moved a lot from March 31st to June 30th this year.

    Why not wait for 2nd quarter reports — probably available not long after July 31st — instead of going off half-cocked with lagged results that will change?

    A second bizarrity is that each asset class is compared to its benchmark in a table. But the final step of calculating the overall benchmark, using the weights of each asset class, is missing.

    Did the “preliminary” 0.61 percent return beat the overall benchmark? I estimated CalPERS’ overall benchmark return at 3.6 percent, so it might be about a 3 percent shortfall. But it’s useless to speculate with stale figures.

    If I had retirement assets at CalPERS, I would be frothing at the mouth over their slapdash lack of professionalism. As we can all see, they are not SEC regulated.

    1. Jim Haygood

      It appears that last year, CalPERS also announced preliminary results of 2.4% return in mid-July.

      Nothing else shows up until the CAFR dated Dec. 31, 2015, which states a 2.2% final return.

      Presentation of this result in the CAFR is a whole other story … for another time. But it’s bizarre.

  31. nihil obstet

    The Vox piece on basic income — I suppose it’s the realistic approach, but I am distressed by the argument that the only way to help the poor is to provide benefits to the rich. According to Greenstein, the successful programs are those that assist workers whose employers pay them too little to support themselves and their families. That’s certainly the Walmart model for their employees. The employees must work at inadequate wages to get the government assistance. Assistance to the poor who can’t work has been cut. Similarly, successful housing assistance are vouchers and low income housing tax credits, two programs that benefit developers and landlords quite handsomely. (Actually the low income housing tax credits are syndicated and provide quite nice tax shelters for upper middle class professionals, doctors et al.)

    Depressing that we accept as reality that basic rights to the resources of the society are distributed only through the sticky hands of the rich.

  32. Aumua

    I like how the first story after “we’re going to focus on politics, economics, and finance” is about baby ducks.

  33. griffen

    Hsbc headline from the Times is proof positive that failing ever upward is a sure way to keep making bank at shareholder expense. Because it is the shareholder who pays – never the executives who supposedly run this big global organization so well they earn their keep. Who coulda knowed it.

    Fudging turds. And Breuer i hope you rest very well in your grave one day.

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