Links 7/29/16

Astronauts who reach deep space ‘far more likely to die from heart disease’ Independent

Tar Sands in the Atlantic Ocean: TransCanada’s Proposed Energy East Pipeline Reader Supported News (furzy)


UK sees biggest fall in consumer confidence for 26 years after Brexit vote Guardian

Brexit recession could cost banks £68bn Telegraph

UK-Ireland relations need special care Financial Times

Theresa May warned plans to curb EU migration is likely to be opposed by Eastern European nations Telegraph. Notice change in headline – the one I used is the original.

Ford considers closing factories and raising prices in Europe in wake of Brexit Guardian. As we told you…

Brexit risks unravelling UK’s role in the web of trade Financial Times. Richard Smith flags this paragraph (emphasis his):

Domestic supply chains matter too. Relatively few businesses export, but many more supply those that do. About 24 per cent of the value added created in the UK economy in 2011 was ultimately consumed abroad. Just 7 per cent of businesses in the country export services, and 5 per cent export goods, but much higher proportions are exposed to their ability to tradeThe data to explore the specific chain links do not exist in Britain, but recent research on Belgian data show that while only 7 per cent of businesses in that very open economy (33 per cent of value added is consumed abroad) export directly, another 38 per cent are one to three links away from them in the supply chain

Get ready for the great Brexit lobbying boom Times (Richard Smith)

Farmers who voted Brexit ‘now at dismay due to threat of farm payments’ FarmingUK (Richard Smith)

Against Injustice: Corbyn launches his campaign Defend Democracy

ECB policymaker seeks to ease concerns over cash hoardings Financial Times

Three banks opt out of Monte dei Paschi’s proposed 5 bln euro cash call – source CNBC

Study says banks in EU stress tests could require €900bn Financial Times

IMF admits disastrous love affair with the euro, apologises for the immolation of Greece Ambrose Evans-Pritchard, Telegraph. A must read.

Concerns over political influence at the IMF Financial Times

IMF ‘overly optimistic’ about success of EU bailouts BBC

Bank of Japan Takes Modest Easing Action Wall Street Journal

EUR/JPY clocks two-week low after BOJ disappointment FX Street

Did Frank Lowy just call for lower immigration? MacroBusiness


Dangerous Propaganda: Network Close To NATO Military Leader Fueled Ukraine Conflict Der Spiegel (Fabian). A must read. Consistent with what we argued then, that the claims of Russian troop movements and other support were based on dubious evidence and looked to be exaggerated:

The emails document for the first time the questionable sources from whom Breedlove was getting his information. He had exaggerated Russian activities in eastern Ukraine with the overt goal of delivering weapons to Kiev.

PUGACHEV’S PUGS – LIONEL BARBER, NEIL BUCKLEY, AND CATHERINE BELTON EXPOSED BY SWISS PROSECUTOR IN COVERUP OF MONEY-LAUNDERING BY FRENCH, SWISS, ISRAELI AND US BANKS John Helmer. Important. Helmer does himself a huge disservice with this insider-y headline. It’s about how the FT shamelessly defends a Russian oligarch who has been found guilty by 11 British judges, including a High Court (appeals) judge and is being pursued by Swiss prosecutors for money laundering. In other words, it’s a window into media politics. BTW, the pink paper is unhappy about Helmer’s story, see here.


Nouveau massacre de la coalition croisée à #Manbij #EI #syrie ‏@AbuHadjar1437 (guurst)

Top Five Ways to tell if a Terrorist is still al-Qaeda despite name Change Juan Cole (resilc)

Why Did WikiLeaks Help Dox Most of Turkey’s Adult Female Population? New York Magazine (furzy)


Night of the Hollow Men: Notes From the Democratic Convention Counterpunch (Li). OMG, you must read this! Simultaneously funny and brutal.

Hillary Clinton Warns of ‘Moment of Reckoning’ in Speech Accepting Nomination New York Times

Anti-Hillary Protesters Make Minor Mayhem Inside the DNC During Hillary’s Speech New York Magazine (resilc)

Hillary Clinton’s Nomination Met With Joy From Many Women at DNC, But Disenchantment From Others Intercept (resilc)

Hillary Clinton Talks Tough on Shadow Banking, But Blackstone Is Celebrating at the DNC David Dayen, Intercept (resilc)

‘No more war’ chants interrupt general The Hill. The warmongering on the last night of the convention took place via a Clinton surrogate.

Why will she turn on those people when it’s so easy to turn on us? Vox

Legal Sea Foods in hot water over latest ad featuring “Cold Fish” Hillary Clinton Fox (Li)

WikiLeaks release includes hacked DNC voicemails The Hill (furzy)

The DNC Is One Big Corporate Bribe David Dayen, New Republic

Snowden knocks WikiLeaks for handling of DNC leak Politico (furzy)

Will Preemptive Accusations Against Russia Cover Up Voting Fraud? Moon of Alabama (margarita)

Puppet Theory: Is Trump Putin’s Puppet? Michael Shedlock

Donald Trump’s Restrictions On The Press Reach Chilling New Low Huffington Post (furzy)

Sorry Hillary, Friday’s headlines will be about Trump CNBC (furzy). Some good insights further down.

Trump’s minimum wage two-step confuses business groups, advisers The Hill (furzy)

Attacking Trump for the Few Sensible Things He Says is Both Bad Politics and Bad Strategy Counterpunch (Li)

5 Reasons Trump Will Win Michael Moore

Anthem prepping for hardball fight over Cigna Salt Lake Tribune (Phil U)

AT&T violated rule requiring low prices for schools, FCC says ars technica (Dan K)

Police State Watch

Feds will pay $475,000 to settle “illegal body cavity search” case ars technica (guurst)

An oil price dilemma: The world may just need less fossil fuels to get by Globe and Mail

Oil Rally Hopes Crushed As Inventories Hit All-Time High OilPrice

Stiglitz Calls Apple’s Profit Reporting in Ireland ‘a Fraud’ Bloomberg (Dan K). Economists should never do tax. Repeats the bogus idea that companies like Apple that use Irish or other “offshore” entities to lower their taxes are keeping money out of the US. The tax treatment has nada to do with the economics. In the case of Apple, the Irish entity has accounts with American TBTF banks and the money is managed out of Nevada as an internal hedge fund. See here for the gory details (and this is simplified from Sheppard’s version for tax professionals in Tax Notes). So Stiglitz is legitimating their propaganda when he repeats the “cash overseas” meme.

Atlanta Fed Drops Second Quarter GDP Forecast WSJ MoneyBeat. We thought the cheerleading about the state of the economy was overdone.

Class Warfare

US Government Mucks up Money-Laundering in Real Estate, Puts Luxury Housing Bubbles at Risk Wolf Richter

The new political divide Economist (resilc)

Drunk Drivers Still Think Uber Is Too Expensive Motherboard (Dan K). Using original title, per URL.

Antidote du jour. KM:

This 3-some belongs to a young couple in Denver. They love black cats, so rescued an 8 week old black kitten, which now appears to be turning gray, apparently in effort to match its 2 new best friends. The Great Dane absolutely loves the kitten and when attacked by it which is quite frequently, picks it up, licks it, and cuddles with it.

fam links

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. EndOfTheWorld

    Great Danes are cool. I used to have some neighbors that had one. You know they are part greyhound and if they decide to take off on a sprint, it’s incredible. This one has a LOT of growing to do to get up to the size of his feet.

    1. abynormal

      checkout the eyes of these divines…
      “I like you; your eyes are full of language.” A.Sexton

        1. Oregoncharles

          I’m impressed that KM can get a dog AND a cat into the bath tub – must never have given that dog a bath. Our dog would drink out of the shower, but wouldn’t enter the room if anyone was in there. If ordered to, she went the other way. Not the most obedient dog.

          I did have a cat that would lie down in the kitchen sink after we’d run hot water in it, though. Wet, but warm. A real Oregon cat: greasy hair, didn’t mind sprinkles.

    2. diptherio

      My cousin has a Dane and a cat that love to play together in the yard. This is how they do it. Kitty walks over to the Great Dane, who tenderly picks the cat up in its mouth…and then flings it about 5 feet through the air, after which the kitty runs back for another go. They started doing this on their own. The neighbors were rather disturbed until the cuz went over and reassured them. Still get strange looks from passersby.

  2. EndOfTheWorld

    5 Reasons Trump Will Win—-Mike Moore is right. Reason #1: NAFTA, etc.—this has always been an issue that the average American can easily grasp, and it still is. How you gonna vote for the wife of the guy that pushed this through, when she announced he would be some kind of “economics czar” in her regime? All of his other reasons are also pertinent.

    1. Uahsenaa

      Since I work in academia, I have this conversation all the time, wherein I try to persuade my colleagues that NAFTA gutted manufacturing and thereby the Midwest… and they just don’t get it. They think out loud, “but we live in a Midwestern town right now. Things seem great!” Yeah, sure, Ann Arbor and Madison and Iowa City and Champaign-Urbana and Columbus may seem swell, but Flint and Milwaukee and Cedar Falls and Peoria and Dayton look like fallout zones in some areas. And most people in the Midwest live in the Flints of the world, not the Ann Arbors.

      1. Roger Smith

        It is exactly the same with the recent “boom” in Detroit the 1-2 square miles with the tall buildings and rich people in Detroit. “Look Joe! She’s coming back!”

        Meanwhile the actual city and the real residents live in a 3rd world country. Thanks Mr. Gilbert.

        1. JohnnyGL

          I think NAFTA gets more attention than PNTR with China, but the latter is probably more important….just got the urge to dig around and found this…


          MI actually got poorer in real gdp per capita from 2001 to 2010. OH barely grew, maybe around 1% over the entire 10 year period. Only a handful of states did quite so badly in this period. It doesn’t seem like things improved a ton from 2010-present.

          Also bumped into this, which was interesting. Change in performance by state from one election to the next.

          Look at how Obama barely hung onto FL and OH in 2012 compared to his dominant performance in 2008. If Trump can grab those two, he’s got a real shot at winning, though he’s still got work to do.

          1. Uahsenaa

            Also, much of the rust belting of America began in the late ’70s, so there’s that as well. For me NAFTA is so emblematic, because in the fight over it, you could see what the Dem. party was and what it was becoming. Congressional Democrats overwhelmingly opposed it, and Clinton’s signing led to a serious rift in his own administration. Fast forward two decades and that willingness within the party to resist its neoliberal tendencies is basically gone.

            1. Left in Wisconsin

              Yes. Also it is amazing that the “intellectual” arguments haven’t changed at all since NAFTA, nor the need to elide the actual concerns of working people. In the rare cases where pro-“free trade” Dems try to explain why they support these awful deals, you always here exactly the same BS:
              1. Free trade = good
              2. USAmerican workers are the greatest workers in the world, we only need a level playing field, this new deal provides greater protections to working people than ever before, blah, blah blah.

              As if they don’t all know that their iPhones are made by highly productive, highly competent Chinese workers paid an order of magnitude less than US minimum wage.

              1. Plenue

                The arguments haven’t really changed in centuries. Free-trade was always a bad deal for the majority of a population. But as bad as things are now, we still haven’t gotten to the point of the Opium Wars, when the British government decided to use its own military to enforce its role as international drug cartel in order to keep tea flowing out of China. The only thing the British had that the Chinese wanted to import were drugs. “Oh, what’s that, you don’t want millions of your citizens to be addicts? Too bad, the Tea Must Flow, so we’re going to use government power to force the ‘market’ to remain open. There’s irony in here somewhere, but I’m too busy sipping my tea and counting my money to bother looking for it.”

      2. Kokuanani

        As you said, you work in academia, and the towns you mention [Ann Arbor, Madison, Columbus] are all “academic” towns, benefitting from the high cost of college [yes, I know, except for the adjuncts] and spiraling student debt. Take that crutch away and let’s see what those places look like.

          1. IDG

            I just realised how the academe has been bought out since the rise of neoliberalism to be complicit with it all over the world.

            In the US is even worse as college comes with a hefty price from which the top managers benefit (sou ‘doubly’ bought out).

            1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

              How are college towns swell?

              If students are burdened with debt and professors paid little, can overpaid administrators by themselves perform the Herculean task of contributing to the local GDP? Don’t they send them most of their money to Wall Street, in New York?

              Will students with free tuition and finally money to spend, make those towns even more swell (not a bad thing, by itself, on an absolute scale), before the surrounding manufacturing towns even see the end of light? Shouldn’t money go to those town first?

              “No, we do them at the same time.”

              Except free tuition is more talked about now.

              One candidate, though, talks more often than any others about NAFTA.

              1. Uahsenaa

                There’s more to a university than professors and students with a sprinkle of admin. When people lament, rightly, the massive ballooning in admin budgets at all public universities, rarely does anyone mention the huge increase in professional staff across the board. It’s easy to deride how much an idiot administrator makes, but for every one of those, there’re dozens of development officers, graphic designers, administrative assistants, academic advisors, student counselors, etc. This class generally makes a decent amount of money (near or just above median), and so they have the kind of disposable income to keep shops, restaurants, and what not thriving.

                The reason why these costs are so difficult to keep under control is because those staff generally become the economic lifeblood of a community. Local businesses may cater somewhat to students, but it’s this other class that actually keeps them afloat in towns where the student population basically disappears for 3-4 months out of the year.

                1. Left in Wisconsin

                  The simpler point is that a large Big Ten-scale university brings a huge amount of money into a place like Madison or Ann Arbor from elsewhere. Tuition comes from where the students come from, state contributions from wherever the taxpayers are, grant money comes from Washington – those are the big 3 sources of income. That drives the local prosperity regardless of the economic efficiency or good- or ill-will of anyone.

                  And if you are a state capital like Madison, that is a second source of funding.

                  This is why places like Madison should be prohibiting from having convention centers and similar venues that also suck in money that should go to Racine or Beloit or Wausau, places that really could use it.

                  1. Treadingwaterbutstillkicking

                    Don’t forget advertising deals for the Badgers.

                    Went to a game last year at Camp Randall, first one there in over 15 years and I almost couldn’t believe the ubiquitousness of advertising and marketing promotion (or the friggin’ price of swiss miss jeez). Lots of people downstream get a small piece of all that run-off, just not too much for the working class.

                    No matter what, NCAA athletics is BIG money for any town.

                    On the same theme, I wonder where Green Bay would be today without the Packers…

                    1. Steve H.

                      I lived near Green Bay about a half-century ago. You would never have heard of it, another ice-port in the north country. If they had sold the franchise to a single owner, it would’ve been moved long ago.

          2. Jim Haygood

            Not only protected, but subsidized (as in political candidates promising free college for all or some).

            Four years good, two years b-a-a-a-a-d-d-d-d-d-d-d!

            1. cwaltz

              Uh the free college would have subsidized PUBLIC COLLEGES which include community colleges and it’s a much better proposition than telling kids to magically come up with 10 grand before they have a job to get training for their career.

        1. Arizona Slim

          University of Michigan alum here. And, let me tell you, if the U-M ever decided to relocate to, say, Saline or Dexter, Ann Arbor would dry up and blow away.

          Ditto for Tucson, where I’m sitting right now. If we lose the University of Arizona, well, kiss this town goodbye.

          1. Left in Wisconsin

            Company towns. Boom and bust. But while they boom, they are very nice places.

      3. Marco

        One of the most eye-opening parts of the Amtrak trip from Chicago to Detroit is the change in scenery from Ann Arbor (which seems almost European in its charm) to the burned out houses and utter wasteland of Detroit. Even Dearborn is starting looking bad (at least from the train window).

        1. Treadingwaterbutstillkicking

          Take the Lake Shore Limited from Chicago to New York (or the reverse trip) and you’ll see the burned-out cores of many industrial cities. We’ve been taking that train for years and have even noticed how much less pollution and stink there is going through places like Gary as de-industrialization has progressed in the Rust Belt…

      4. RabidGandhi

        I went to Pontiac a couple of years ago and it reminded me of the Argentine hinterland during the brunt of neoliberalism. Utterly depressing. The next day we were in Ann Arbor and it was a whole ‘nuther planet. Just as under neoliberalism here, the rich had receded to their isolated enclaves.

        To this day there are people here who have never left those enclaves who don’t understand why so many people hated the 90s.

        1. Arizona Slim

          Tell me about it. When I visited Ann Arbor during the 1990s and early 2000s, I was blown away by the wealth.

          And I was just as baffled by the locals. I’d try to tell them about what life was like outside of Ann Arbor (much less prosperous than their lives) and they just wouldn’t hear it.

          1. JTMcPhee

            I believe Juan Cole, who speaks for several different viewpoints in his writings, many of which I happen to agree with, some very much not, lives in Ann Arbor and is a well-tenured professor with a “chair” at the U of Mich. Lives In a nice house, with a solar panel grid-tied system he is very proud of and a nice electric car to brag on.

            He did face, apparently, some effort by former administration creeps to use the CIA and other sneaky-Pete resources to “get” him. Fortunately the person requested to orchestrate the “getting” apparently felt that such activities would be “unlawful.” Bwahahahaha….

            Different tiers of privilege…

            1. Uahsenaa

              I went to UM and the cognitive dissonance there is staggering. A very dear friend of mine, who was on my dissertation committee, a Marxist critic, for pete’s sake, was telling me about her move to Boston (in 2009) and how hard it was to find a decent place to live for less than a million.

              She’s a lovely and kind person, but I nearly spat my coffee in her face.

              1. Arizona Slim

                Here’s another U-M alum who is glad that the teacup is on the other side of the room. Otherwise, its contents would be all over my keyboard.

                As for the cognitive dissonance, that’s why I seldom visit Ann Arbor. I can barely handle it for a day or two. And then I have to get OUT.

      5. DJG

        Uahsenaa: Yes. I have made the trip from Chicago to Philadelphia about once a year to visit a friend. Notable decline makes itself visible (as I head east) somewhere just east of Fort Wayne and Toledo. I have usually broken the trip with a night in a town in eastern Ohio or western Pennsylvania. Youngstown is now all chain restaurants–and those are the good jobs. I stayed in Cambridge, Ohio, which had two temp services–in a town of some 10 thousand. Beaver Falls, PA, is so depressed that even the Salvation Army store went under. The only viable institution is an extremely conservative Presbyterian college (Pope = Antichrist Presbyterians). Reading Naked Capitalism and driving cross-country will put economic data and an understanding of economic effects of human deprivation together.

      6. Michael

        I agree with the general sentiment, but some of these places (Flint especially) were on their last breaths before NAFTA. NAFTA is a horrific policy with tremendously poor consequences, but it is not the only factor in the loss of US manufacturing jobs.

        1. ambrit

          Yes, well, there was a window of opportunity when the government could have given tax breaks for domestic employment policies and confiscatory taxes on overseas earnings. Traditionally, the economy would supply other employment to offset job loss in declining businesses. Such job supply would be usually through the establishment of local business ‘innovation,’ (in it’s original meaning,) and new business creation. This is where “free trade” does it’s dirtywork. The world, as a physical thing, is large and diverse. Finance, as a system enabled by electronics and instant communications is a virtual thing prone to concentration and easy manipulation. Labour has the potential and agency to organize to oppose the dictates of capital. Finance, as a virtual activity, in more ways than one, serves the whims of capital. It all helps me to understand the logic of Frank Herberts’ “Butlerian Jihad.”

        2. Uahsenaa

          I meant Flint more as a “type,” but the point is well taken. You could just as easily substitute Pontiac or Hamtramck or Saginaw. Most Midwestern states are filled with small and medium sized cities that, if they weren’t gutted by plant moves in the ’80s, then they certainly were in the ’90s.

          1. Left in Wisconsin

            Or the 2000s. There really was still quite a lot of Midwestern mfg through the 1990s but there was another huge manufacturing decline that started around 2000.

    2. Ellis

      I don’t think NAFTA is the problem. Manufacturing is up in this country, despite the trade deficit. The problem is that the working class doesn’t benefit from its own productivity increases. Blaming NAFTA only deflects blame for the loss of jobs onto foreigners — the old racist, chauvinistic argument that is shared by Democrats, union officials and Trump.

      1. craazyboy

        Yes, yes, seen the meme, seen the FRED charts. Manufacturing is up a smidgeon, even inflation adjusted – during a period when US population went from 220 million to 310 million. The manufacturing dollars are not “per capita”.

        Also, I’ve been thinking I need to sift thru the data and see what it is we are manufacturing. I know a big chunk is defense. Prolly another big chunk is pills….but I tire of having to undertake a huge amount of work all the time to sort out some media BS. Here we have had very high inflation – so that’s what made manufacturing dollars go up. The other area to check out is how they treat prices of finished goods and if there is some adjustment for foreign made components in finished goods.

        And on top of that we don’t “share” well. The share “went to capital”.

        1. DJG

          craazyboy: Yes.

          Ellis: Why read economic data with care when you can blame racist union officials?

      2. Goyo Marquez

        To put it differently, why isn’t NAFTA the problem if it made manufacturing cheaper in Mexico than in North Carolina? Why wouldn’t you move your factory jobs to a place where you can pay your employees a 10th of what you currently have to pay them?

        Ask the North Carolina furniture workers about it. Ask the Mexicans in Chihuahua, Chihuahua, who are super excited to be working for Ford.

        My dad, who helped businesses, mostly farmers but some maquiladoras, navigate the Mexican bureaucracy liked to tell a story about a conference he attended locally, put on by the US government, to help businesses understand NAFTA. What shocked him about it was that, as he understood it and I always assumed he must have misunderstood something, the US government would provide financial subsidies to US companies desiring to move their factories to Mexico.

        The depredations of our elites are so great we can’t believe them.

        1. ambrit

          Sueno. (Sorry, no tildes on my keyboard.)
          The short sightedness of that ‘program’ is that one impoverished one group to slightly improve the lives of another. Instead of lifting the standards of living of poor people in non First World states, the neoliberals decided to lower the standards of living of the formerly privileged groups. Thus, massive income inequality. It’s an old, old story. So is the next phase.

        2. craazyboy

          Then the corporations are telling the Mexican government they have to be competitive with China and that Mexican min wage is too high (Mexicans decide to head for the US). The corporations tell our government taxes are too high. But upper executive pay is just right, or maybe a tad low for all they do.

          1. Punta Pete

            Yes, exports of subsidized U.S. Corn to Mexico decimated the subsistence farming economy and drove the peasants either to the U.S. or to Mexico City. BTW the forecast of this development was one of the few things the economic forecasts got right when prognosticating about NAFTA prior to its passage.

      3. Mark P.

        ‘Manufacturing is up’

        Manufacturing as a large segment of the work force is never coming back. Most of such manufacturing as is coming back to America is being done in highly-automated, specialized plants that employ relatively few workers.

        Even the Chinese are turning to massive automation in their factories. Foxconn is replacing 60,000 workers with robots, for instance.

        1. Optimader

          Chinese hit peak labor a while back and they know it. Hence, Big Automation initiative

          The tight rope they walk is the automation futher inhibits domestic dicretionary wealth/consumption, reinforcing their condition of being an export value-added slave wage labor colony (as opposed to migrating to being a somewhat more sustainable balance of Export & Sovereign consumption low wage labor colony).

          Read: a nervous Party Oligarchy and lots and lots of very poor people that see vids on their knock off 4g phones of round eyes enjoying levels of consumption they can only dream about while becoming pregressively embittered and malcontented.

          1. craazyboy

            Betcha China is moving towards the level of automation in Japan in the 80s. Spot welding robots in automotive and pick and place robots in electronics. “Automated” assembly lines and material handling/movement. Robot invasion! Prolly CNC machining too! Because quality! (which has been improving a lot, I find)

            Now they’ll have to train people to keep all that going. Good jobs!

            Tho there will be some surplus Chinese to take care of somehow.

      4. Oregoncharles

        Actually, the problem with NAFTA is American businesspeople who take advantage of the “race to the bottom” – which also afflicts Mexico. The Zapatista rebellion was directly in response to NAFTA.

  3. abynormal

    IMF: “In a monetary union, the basics of debt dynamics change as countries forgo monetary policy and exchange rate adjustment tools,” said the report. This would be amplified by a “vicious feedback between banks and sovereigns”, each taking the other down. That the IMF failed to anticipate any of this was a serious scientific and professional failure.”

    ‘anticipate’, seriously? i smell the dried blood of a vampire squid, but that aside…the LIC 2013 & 2015 loan changes are enough to prove THEY KNEW

    1. JTMcPhee

      Anybody know off the top of their heads who ended up with all that dump-truck “money” that got bailed (in or out, depending on your point of view and net worth)?

      1. JTMcPhee

        And if cops in FL can kill a black dude and get off on the application of “stand your ground” “law,” one wonders what Greek mopes are allowed to do when the ECB and IMF thugs invade their homes, steal their futures and other ways out.. A “duty to retreat”?

  4. msmolly

    Here’s the missing live link for the Juan Cole piece on recognizing an al-Qaeda terrorist.

        1. abynormal

          bumped into this while searching: “During the question period following the talk, Cole also noted a difference between some of these Jihadist groups and the fringe religious movements described by sociologists: Jihadist recruiters have knowledge of Soviet and U.S. Central Intelligence Agency spy tradecraft from their experiences in Soviet-occupied Afghanistan. They learned not only to win converts but also to pull off “false flag” deceptions designed to enlist the help of people seeking to cooperate with authorities.”

          …we’re setting our own traps

          1. Gareth

            I suggest that as part of the re-branding effort the terrorists formerly known as the Nusra Front try wearing “I’m With Her” buttons.

  5. Bubba_Gump

    Gotta say, the coronation last night was tough to watch… partner got sick of my running commentary on the speech.

    But dammit, Trump disgusts me as well — the Epstein-related rape charge and the way he views his daughters as sexual objects in particular. I know there’s a strong lean toward him in this group because of what we’re not afraid to say here about dirty neoliberal HRC and her corrupt machine. There is nothing I would like more than forcing her into early retirement but I have a very very hard time with the notion of Trump as the alternative. The situation couldn’t be any more perfect for HRC, or more difficult for the country.

    1. sd

      As Lambert likes to point out, which will be less effective? Clinton now has too many prominent Republican endorsements to argue that she will be less effective.

      It’s a really dreadful choice.

      1. cocomaan

        It’s basically national seppuku.

        Regardless of who is president, does anyone think that the next four years are going to be times of plenty? I really don’t. I hear recession looming and war looming and the environment continues to heat up. People are increasingly irate and are having a hard time relating to one another. Trust, as Yves says, is at a premium. Political and economic leaders seem to be victims of inertia, even if they mean well.

        I cannot say where we’ll be in 2020, but I don’t think it’s going to be a good place.

        There’s a way out. The field is small, but it involves individual action and connecting with like minded people. It involves, most importantly, a shift away from the internet as the means of organizing. The internet is not what it seems. It is not a clean medium for the exchange of ideas. It should be a starting point for conversations, but we truly need to start thinking beyond just posting things. Direct action is our only way out.

        1. Arizona Slim

          ISTR reading that a lot of the early organizing of the Revolutionary War happened in taverns.

          Yeah, I know. No internet back then. But there is something to be said for, y’know, talking to people.

          Which is why I’m offering to host an NC meetup right here in Tucson. During the winter months.

          Anyone care to join me?

          1. Carl

            We normally travel to Tucson to catch up with my wife’s sister and the Day of the Dead walk in November…

          2. Elizabeth

            I would be interested in joining you. During the 60s I went to high school and the U of A, and Tucson is kind of my second home (native Cali and current resident). Still have friends in southern Arizona, and the winters are great. I do think talking with people (like-minded and otherwise) are important ways to share ideas.

            1. Arizona Slim

              Okay, Carl and Elizabeth are in. Who else wants to join the Tucson NC party?

              I’ll find a suitably revolutionary tavern for us.

              1. Jess

                I have friends in Phoenix and it’s only a short drive to Tucson. I could be up for it.

                Speaking of meet-ups, hoping the August 14th meetup in SF is still a go because I’m gonna be booking a flight soon.

              2. Malk

                Ah, my alma mater U of A! I also went to Pima, another Tucson institution. I really miss Tucson, and that’s where I also first fell in love.

                1. Arizona Slim

                  Hot dang! Elizabeth, Jess, Malk, and Carl are in!

                  The suitably revolutionary tavern hunt is on.

      2. voteforno6

        Trumps seems too undisciplined to actually get much done. Plus, he’d probably spend most of his time fighting the establishment. That seems to be the best that we can hope for – gridlock and chaos.

        1. Light a Candle

          I agree, I would vote for Trump (if I were American) as dreadful as that it is because it would be a less terrible choice than Hillary.

          Hillary is the more effective evil.

        2. Optimader

          Define undisciplined. Dont confuse undisciplined with don’t like.

          And plenty not to like, but i dont think he is in the position he is in due to being undisciplined.

          As well, i have no reason so far to think he is an addleminded Neocon. It may play out differently of course, but i know HRC is a Neocon in deed and word which is the redline for me because between thetwo of them, that makes her the existential global threat.

          Again, alot to not like about Trump, but i feel it in mostly regarding domestic policy, which will be moderated by other inertial US political forces.

          OTOH HRC as POTUS I feel based on history,affiliations and rhetoric is much more inclined to doubledown on getting this Country into further major international shitstorms which invariably escalate into circumstances and events out of the control of the POTUS.

          Based on recent US history it is now substantially at the discretion of the POTUS to pursue Military engagement and geopolitical posturing of Military forces as the primary foriegn policy tool, in lieu of diplomacy.

          Congress is merely for the convienince of political cover, when desired, they of course are too busy raising campaign funds and pursuing other weighty matters of State like divining who uses which bathroom and such.
          The othe big differentiation I see is that the RNC in general and advocates of perpetual war in particular HATE Trump. That gives me some glimmer of optimism. If the biggest problem with Tump is that he’s is willing to have a meaningful and reciprocal dialog with the soveriegn leader of the country that has parity in nuclear weapons w/ the US , whats not to like on that point? I await HRC explaination on that.

      3. JohnnyGL

        Yes, pick your poison….I’m taking a slightly different twist which is, “who can we more easily toss out of office in 4 years?”

          1. Pat

            She will be impeached, but the Senate will not convict unless the Democratic Senators won’t survive voting against it. That 2/3rd level makes conviction practically impossible especially in today’s ethics free political landscape.

            So it will be brave it out, and go into reelection hoping for the sympathy vote OR if the evidence is overwhelming and Democratic Senators will not fall on their swords for her, she resigns like Nixon did. Having watched the Clintons for far too long, the most likely is door 1, regardless of how much evidence there is. The only question will be whether the people who voted for her in the first place figure out they got what they voted for and bolt.

            1. Arizona Slim

              Recall that Nixon had major surgery shortly after he resigned. And, from what I read, he almost didn’t make it.

              Judging from his appearance during 1973-74, he was ailing. Bob Woodward’s Final Days book also noted that he was drinking heavily.

              I can’t help thinking that a similar scenario will play out with Hillary. Poor health. Substance abuse. And impeachment troubles. Result: A resignation.

              1. ambrit

                If H Clinton is fighting so hard, and so dirty to become the ‘first woman president,’ does anyone think that she would mar that photo op by resigning? She might relish dying in office. “Saint Arkansas Hillary died for you!” Since most saints were martyrs, she can be spun as having succumbed to the stresses placed upon her by heathen Socialists and Godless Progressives. Hagiography can be so much fun once you accept that history is ‘triangulable.’

            2. Yves Smith Post author

              Bill will probably die during her term, so she’ll get the sympathy vote (Bah).

              Or that could be her little October surprise! Some curare in his hairbrush?

              1. John Candlish

                Are you seriously suggesting a blatant American political assassination on a par with Alexander Litvinenko’s?

                Have we come that far?

                1. Stephen Liss

                  That was polonium in his tea. Litvenenko basically cooked from the inside out. Yves is not proposing to go that far. Just a straight decapitation.

      4. Emma

        “It’s a really dreadful choice.” It’s Duverger’s Law at work as coined by the French sociologist. With more than a soupçon of nepotism for the last 35 years resulting in the predominance of either a Bush or a Clinton.

      5. Rootie Kazoodie

        I think massa knows knows just how effective an ineffective president can be… for them? Apparently somebody got drunk through Hedley Lamarr’s aside in Blazing Saddles? Now, if you can run TWO candidates against each other, each despised by >50% of the populace, to terrorize the remaining 50% so desperately that they’ll be justifiably relieved at any resulting diminution & delays in shock & awe, as our celestial overlords part-out the rotting corpse of everything our predecessors fought so hard for…

        “The illusion of freedom will continue as long as it’s profitable to continue the illusion. At the point where the illusion becomes too expensive to maintain, they will just take down the scenery, they will pull back the curtains, they will move the tables and chairs out of the way and you will see the brick wall at the back of the theater.”

    2. dk

      I wouldn’t say “strong lean toward him” so much as folks here liking the view from the fence.

      I’ll be making my decision on Nov 1st. (ah, if only I could put it off to the 31st!)

    3. Myron

      You’re really going to focus on sexual allegations of all things when we’re talking about the wife of Bill Clinton?

      1. EndOfTheWorld

        Right, Trump wins without doubt if it gets down and dirty in the sexual allegation weeds.

      2. HBE

        Lolita express…all good democrats know that was a Russian psy ops program, masterminded by putin himself.

          1. voteforno6

            To be fair, while on a trip to Korea several years (the highlight of which was seeing an extremely obese Henry Kissinger waddling through the baggage claim terminal) I spent some time outside a U.S. base – the juicy girls from Russia did seem to be the most attractive.

            1. low integer

              Juicy girls? They sound great but what does this mean exactly? I have a feeling this is one of those things that Google might get confused about ;-)

    4. Carolinian

      the Epstein-related rape charge

      A little gossip bomb just thrown in for the heck of it, eh? Apparently you are the only one thinking the woman making the charge has any credibility. But if Epstein is your concern then don’t forget that future first husband and known intern diddler was a regular on his sex flights.

      1. Yves Smith Post author

        I barely looked at the case, but the alleged activity was from the early 1990s.

        If she was on the Lolita Express, she was no doubt drugged up much of the time, No access to media of any kind, No Internet then. And she would have to service tons of men.

        So at least a decade later, she figures out one of the was Trump? This just isn’t credible.

        Plus I know a woman personally who was sexualized early (first abortion at age 13). A stage 4 alcoholic by the age of 50. Means odds of 5 year survival are 20%. She would make stuff up about her recently-married husband (long story as to why he was so dumb as to do that) and be utterly convinced of it. She’d call the cops, saying he was abusing her (to get a restraining order so she’d get his rent controlled 2 BR off Park all to herself). Every time, the cops hauled her off, either to the drunk tank or the psych ward.

        Last I heard of her, she was homeless.

    5. katiebird

      A HUGE part of my disgust is that I know Hillary is the worst candidate possible because no other candidate could make me (ME!) imagine voting for Trump.

      She is not only horrible based on policies that are obvious to anyone who followed her years as Secretary of State, The Democrats deliberately nominated the weakest possible candidate.

      If Trump really wants to win … If he goes after her the way he did each of the other Republicans during the primaries… Then he can’t lose.

      That wasn’t the choice or the power of any of us here. It is not our fault. It is just a fact that she is a horrible candidate in every way, politically (ex. TPP), philosophically (ex. War monger), professionally (ex. Government Email Server in Home Basement) and personally (ex. Corrupt Foundation).

      All the Dems have is BUT TRUMP.

        1. sunny129

          Just google to find out who built STUXNET/worm and placed into the NET,which brought down Iran’s Nucl program which caight them clueless!

          fyi; It was NOT Russian or the Chinese1

    6. Otis B Driftwood

      Sorry if I’m being a broken record here, but I really don’t understand why so many people on this esteemed forum continue think within the two-party duopoly box.

      None of the Above in 2016

      1. Roger Smith

        While I like much of Stein’s policies (at least on the surface), the Green’s are simply not viable in this race. The Republicans and Democrats are holding billion dollar events in large stadiums with max exposure while, and not that I condone the corporate whoring of the aforementioned groups, Jill Stein and the Green’s are having a picnic out front.

        I have seen too many people in the last 3 days rush to dumb justifications as a reason to “Not” Vote for Clinton… by voting for her. Even if those voters tried something else, I am not convinced the Greens could handle the responsibility or win.

        1. Vatch

          The Greens can’t win in 2016. But winning the Presidency is not the point of voting for the Green candidate this year; the point is to build the party and gain federal grant money; also, some Green candidates in down ticket races might have a chance of winning.

          If a third party’s Presidential candidate gets 5% of the vote, they qualify for general election grant money in the next election in 2020. They might even qualify for retroactive money for the 2016 election. See:

          Since no third-party candidate received 5% of the vote in the 2008 presidential election, only the Republican and Democratic parties were eligible for 2012 convention grants, and only their nominees were eligible to receive grants for the general election once they were nominated. Third-party candidates could qualify for public funds retroactively if they received 5% or more of the vote in the general election.

          Apologies to those of you who have had read similar comments by me on several other occasions.

          1. james

            Voting Green. I know Jill Stein won’t win (unless everyone who wanted to vote Bernie votes for her…), but the time is now for building the Party. Gene Debs left the Democrats after 1894.

          2. vidimi

            exactly. one of the reasons we’re in this mess is because the electorate is incapable of thinking mid- to long-term. we want gratification and we want it now. we want results. now!

          3. grizziz

            The style of voting has to change for a third-party to be viable, not just money. My preference is Ranked Choice aka Instant-Run-Off voting. As I have pointed out before, it is the first-past-the-post/winner-take-all style of voting that devolves into a two party system. It is another iterative process that an early democracy would not be able to foresee.
            I keep pointing this out to the Green Party (who actually have Proportional Voting and Instant Run Off voting as the first items in their platform) that this is the structural barrier to acquiring power and here is where the work needs to be done. The response is always some magical thinking about the beauty of consensus and the power of virtue signalling.

            1. Vatch

              I agree that Instant-Run-Off voting would be a great improvement. For now, we have to work with what we have. This year presents an unusual opportunity, because both the Republican candidate and the Democratic candidate are hated by huge numbers of people.

              There is a common objection to third party voting that it wastes one’s vote. Because of our style of voting (thank you for discussing this), there is some truth to this. But it is only in swing states where this is valid. In most parts of the country, the result of the election is preordained. Clinton will win California, New York, and Illinois; Trump will win Texas, and most of the great plains and the south east. In those states, a vote for Republican Trump or Democrat Clinton is a wasted vote. People should vote Green (or Libertarian) in non swing states such as Texas and California. In 2016, 5% is the goal.

            2. a different chris

              >The style of voting has to change

              I agree with this. But the point is — if we don’t start voting for Green/Libertarian/Whatever then the talking heads will say “the current arrangement works fine see nobody votes for those tiny parties.”

              If the voting is 49/47/3/1 then it sure looks like you only really need 2 parties so why change anything?

              Like a proper Brexit, this would be a long-term project with a great deal of pain until the sun comes out again, and thus we aren’t going to do it and have probably put it off too long already anyway.

        2. Otis B Driftwood

          And Roger, with all due respect, the Greens will continue to have a picnic as long as the defeatist attitude you present persists. I’m not sure how anyone can believe there is hope of reforming the Democratic party away from its neoliberal rightward course.

          What would you rather do? Hope things change, or act to make the change happen? For me, and many others, moving to the Green party is the best chance we have. Let’s make them viable by getting involved rather than remaining complacent.

          1. Roger Smith

            I am not saying they shouldn’t be supported. I am making a comparison between the platforms everyone is standing on. I think party duopoly is a sham and I think more people should consider third party instead of making up clever workarounds for how they “aren’t” voting for Clinton. They could at least get them to the public debates.

          2. Katniss Everdeen

            While I can appreciate the sentiment, I’m just wondering how much time you think you have to effect this “change.” Events are moving at relative lightening speed, and you’re proposing to “get ’em next time.”

            And “next time” is four or even eight years down the road, when we’ll be inevitably starting further behind the eight ball than we are right now.

            Nafta took effect in 1994, more trade “agreements” followed, and the entire Midwest industrial base was GONE in 12 years. The dot com bubble went from boom to bust in 2 years. Glass Steagall was repealed in 1999 and the Commodity Futures Modernization Act passed in 2000 and the financial crisis occurred 7 years later–less than a single presidential tenure.

            Some drug prices increase 1000% OVERNIGHT, and an annual “healthcare” cost increase of 20% implies a DOUBLING in less than 4 years, a single presidential term.

            And then there are the wars, which are started in an instant and layered on top of those already being waged without end.

            I think you get my point.

            While working within the “system” to keep the Greens “on the ballot” seems sensible, logical and comfortable, it’s also every bit as self-destructive as deciding to believe that, after four days, clinton and kaine no longer “beiieve in” TPP.

            1. Vatch

              Most, maybe all, of the problems and disasters that you describe were joint projects of the Republican and Democratic parties. Voting for a Democrat or a Republican will just strengthen the plutocrats and their destructive policies.

        3. cwaltz

          And they’ll never be viable as long as people withhold their votes under the guise of “viability.”

          If you don’t want to vote for them then don’t, but the non viability excuse is the laziest and lamest excuse out there.

      2. dk

        Yes and one can cast a ballot to that effect, leaving the presidential selection blank.

        Don’t the worst slate in US history keep you from the polls.

    7. SpringTexan

      Agree. A protege of Roy Cohn and someone who has shafted and bilked person after person in his business and is thoroughly dishonorable. And someone overtly racist and supportive of torture and press suppression.

      Very sad situation.

    8. fresno dan

      As I’ve said, 4 years from now 99.9% of the population will deny having voted for the sitting president…
      I already got my bumper sticker – I did not vote for the president.

    9. Cry Shop

      Er, Hillary must have some idea about how many times Bill’s been on Epstien’s pimpmobile airplane, and to Epstein’s private island cum pedo paradise.

      That the US press has sat on this, that two Bush brothers together kicked Epstein’s procecution out of the Federal system, and down to the State level where he got only a very short stay in a condo style jail says something. That Hillary and Bill both do a number of unpaid speaches for Jeb Bush’s private education industry initiatives and invest Clinton foundation money into Bush operations says something more. The allegations against Trump are just allegations, lets see the facts come out from a court case. The log books on Clinton’s flights are hard facts that have been supressed.

      1. TheCatSaid

        “The allegations against Trump are just allegations, lets see the facts come out from a court case. The log books on Clinton’s flights are hard facts that have been suppressed.”
        It smacks of that ongoing strategy of aggressively accusing your opponent of your own weaknesses.

  6. Steve H.

    This is the first time in a long time that links or the cooler didn’t include a certain birdwatcher.

    May I suggest that his actions speak louder than words, and say that he does not believe in an imperial presidency. But you can be elected as an independent at a local level, and get yourself to Congress with diligence, without losing your soul.

      1. Uahsenaa

        Nina Turner claimed the DNC has Sanders in an impossible position for some reason, and it must be significant, since she, a woman who is not afraid to speak her mind, was suddenly reluctant to explain precisely how the DNC had mistreated her.

        It wouldn’t surprise me if his wife is venting more than just her personal feelings.

        1. RabidGandhi

          To borrow the LS disclaimer, “not that I’m foily, BUT…”

          Watching the homemade videos from inside the convention showing things like the white noise machine, security forces snatching away delegate protest signs, l’Affaire Nina… I’m really starting to think the Dems have jumped some sort of shark in the depths they will go to steal this election.

          For the last 50 years or so hard-handed Tammany style tactics had not been necessary in US politics because the filters worked; no one outside the Overton Window could get near the top of either party. In 2016 those filters broke down, the dogs stopped eating the dog food and the rabble are in full pitchfork mode. Ten years ago I would have dismissed the idea of some kind of mafia style threat having been made to a candidate, whereas now all bets are off.

            1. hunkerdown

              I’ve been reading into acoustics recently in the course of putting up a home recording studio, which gives me no credential but some interest and familiarity. I had trouble getting a good sense of scale through the perspective and the encoding quality of the video, but I think it could be a passive acoustic absorber, like this one (Primacoustic). It looks a bit thin for a speaker cabinet. Whether the trap was placed there for technical or political purposes is another question that requires more info and better pictures.

              It also seems too big for the Wi-Fi theory, unless it was also relaying other bands (GSM for the crackberries?). That theory could have been verified by scanning for the network and reading beacon signal strength at various distances and orientations (somehow I doubt they disabled SSID broadcast, based on their internal customer base and said base’s competence with IT).

              1. hunkerdown

                Another example of passive acoustic traps, sheets of fabric-covered rock wool to be hung in the rafters. If such arrangements were found specifically above the California delegation, that might suggest intent to censor or “dB Magic” their voice vote away, rather than to keep the Anointed from hearing the rabble.

            2. low integer

              I don’t know about the hardware but I know about acoustics. Chances are it works on the same principal as noise cancelling headphones. Once there are a lot of voices together you would probably get a roughly normal distribution of frequencies, which is probably fairly consistent between different groups of individuals due to averaging effects. You just need to emit the same signal exactly out of phase to cancel the noise. This is hastily written and I’m speculating on the normal (or Gaussian) distribution of frequencies.
              Of course with chants you could simply record the first repetition and use that for the out of phase signal to emit.
              Also, it would be pretty easy (relative to other technical challenges that are out there) to write software that did all of this automatically.

              1. low integer

                Adding: Thinking about it, as far as the hardware goes all you would need is a microphone and a speaker connected to some sort of microprocessor. Not particularly specialized equipment.

                1. hunkerdown

                  The cancelling waves need to arrive at the same time as the “noise” waves, which, with the listener, constitute three points of a triangle. (Rule of thumb: sound at sea level moves on the order of 1 foot per millisecond.) Even six inches of movement to either side changes the effectiveness of the noise cancellation at 2kHz from best achievable to +3dB (doubling) in sound pressure level. One would also need to optimize for a particular listening position.

                  If it were an active device, it could be a noise generator rather than active noise cancellation — or, it’s tissue paper for Hillary, intended just to keep Her from having Her sensibilities offended and maybe going on tilt. The tissue paper goes on for miles.

                  1. low integer

                    I agree that positioning is important and if the noise cancelling noise is in phase with the noise to be cancelled you will double the amplitude of the acoustic pressure waves. It’s complicated but definitely possible. These halls have usually been designed to have cooperative acoustics and they could easily have set up a matrix of acoustic sensors (essentially microphones) that are actively mapping the acoustic field and adjusting output of the noise cancelling speakers. Human voices also have limited frequency bands so you are working within a limited spectrum.

                    I saw a description when I searched the company linked to below using google of a noise cancelling intercom system for convention halls and using google images I’m pretty sure you can see the exact device used if you scroll down a bit. I may be wrong, it certainly wouldn’t be the first time (unlike Krugman of course), yet I’m pretty convinced I’m on the right track here.

                    1. low integer

                      Anyway it’s time for some sleep. I stayed up all night and then some. It felt like an important 16 hours for some reason. Lucky it’s Saturday.

          1. Bubba_Gump

            It’s a Cisco Aironet 3500P wifi access point made for stadiums and arenas — google it. The product whitepaper shows it mounted exactly as seen in the video. The declaration made in the video undermines the presenter’s credibility, unfortunately. What other heresay is she including?

      2. low integer

        Thanks for this. I still have a lot of respect for Sanders. Perhaps relative to the maximum impact he could have had he fell short, yet (to me at least) on the whole he was a huge net good in the fight for decency. He reframed the discussion almost single-handedly and rightly or wrongly is evidently not a burn it all down and screw the consequences kinda guy. Different strokes and all.

          1. John k

            Exactly why they now despise him.
            And he gave us a peek behind the curtain, exactly why they despise us.

            1. EndOfTheWorld

              I would respect him a lot more if he had gone all out to win, which would have included attacking Hill on the e mails, and fighting the fraud tooth and nail. A case could be made that he defrauded me out of the cash contributions I gave him (which went well into the single digits in USD) by not trying to win.

              1. low integer

                I have recently stated that I would be wanting my money back if I had donated to Sanders, which I probably would have done if I was a USian. The fault lies almost entirely with the DNC imo, and while it’s probably way to much hassle just to reclaim a few (valuable, no doubt) bucks, that class action lawsuit against the DNC seems to be addressing this.

                1. Arizona Slim

                  Had I known that Sanders would have caved in the end, I would have skipped the donations and the volunteering for his campaign.

                  But none of us has ESP.

                  1. EndOfTheWorld

                    I think I have ESP a little bit. That’s why my cash donation total never made it into two digits, and why I decided not to work for Senator Sanders.

                    1. Arizona Slim

                      I’ll confess to being in the double digits, but well short of the C-note level.

                      And, as mentioned here before, I quickly soured on the campaign’s focus on all phone banking! All the time!

                  2. rufus magister

                    Did you not hear and understand his repeated statement — “I will support the Democratic nominee”?

                    Stein and the Greens after been after Sanders to cooperate with them since 2011. He has yet to return her calls.

                    They’re just another capitalist party, you know…. Go Red, not Green.

                  3. Bubba_Gump

                    I never thought he would win – I know some of the players on HRC’s team and they have far more power than most people imagine, even here on NC. It’s a disgustingly ruthless unprincipled group. That’s why I donated an astounding amount of money to Bernie’s campaign and volunteered for him. I’d say we all moved the needle. Time will tell if it was far enough to matter.

              2. RabidGandhi

                What is a win? Sanders in the presidency? No that’s just one more step forward in a neverending battle. Even if he did win, he would still be faced with overwhelming pressures from TPTB, and in each case he would have to make a strategy decision like he did when he decided to run as a (D) instead of an (Ind), or when he decided to skip the email argument in order not to distract from his stump issue of inequality. Some strategies would work and others wouldn’t. Would you demand your money back each time a particular strategy doesn’t pay off?

                Sanders moved the ball farther down the field than any other individual in recent memory. Now it is up to us to take the ball and run with it. The ire against him from his left and the accusations of sheepdogging and fraud are repulsive.

                1. DJG

                  RabidGandhi: Yes. Sanders did what he could. Now where is everyone else? Talking themselves into quiet and passive despair, which seems to be the purpose of the WWW?

                  Vaclav Havel did what he could, too. Pulled off his Wikipedia entry: He was known for his essays, most particularly The Power of the Powerless, in which he described a societal paradigm in which citizens were forced to “live within a lie” under the communist regime.[16] In describing his role as a dissident, Havel wrote in 1979: “…we never decided to become dissidents. We have been transformed into them, without quite knowing how, sometimes we have ended up in prison without precisely knowing how. We simply went ahead and did certain things that we felt we ought to do, and that seemed to us decent to do, nothing more nor less.”[17]

                  Or: Act decently. Do it often enough and you regain your self-respect (or never lose it).

          2. Anne

            But apparently, at least according to my Hillary-supporting Facebook friends, he wasn’t visibly enthusiastic and looked grumpy during her speech, which was deemed ungracious and ignorant of this historical moment.


            I didn’t watch – have seen bits and pieces of the speech this morning, and got the rundown from the Today crew, who had a kind of “meh” reaction – also pointing to the Muslim father’s speech as being the high point of the night, and feeling Clinton failed to capture the spirit and energy of, and build on, Obama’s remarks from the night before.

            Good ol’ Chuck Todd thought that even though the noise from the Bernie crowd wasn’t easily heard by viewers, she was somewhat thrown off her game by their presence and the noise she could hear throughout her speech.

            Whatever. I think it’s all noise, in the end. Noise I think Clinton is going to have ongoing trouble being heard over, not from Sanders supporters, but from Donald Trump’s uncanny ability to capture the media microphone whenever and wherever he wants.

            1. nycTerrierist

              My meager consolation after this week: the debates promise to be a doozy!

              How will she weasel her way out of having at least one debate?

              1. MtnLife

                Will she weasel out of it or adopt a style a la Lois Griffin in the Family Guy episode where she runs for office? Instead of repeating “9/11” and “USA” (which is what the D convention last night sounded eerily like) it’ll be “because Trump”, “I’m a woman”, and “those Russians!”

      3. EmilianoZ

        Something interesting from the article:

        I was in Birmingham, Alabama, and Bernie and I had a closed-door meeting. We had a lot of those before rallies, where we had just people in the community and listened to them, not in front of the press because we wanted them to talk about things that affect their lives. And in Birmingham, a police officer can go up and give them a fine if one shade was high and one shade was low on the building. Oh, you’re not taking care of your [property] — $75 fine. And these things would build up, and people would be arrested because they didn’t have money to pay the fines, and they’d have a record. “Have you ever been arrested?” [on job applications]. All of these things — the new Jim Crow laws.

      4. JohnnyGL

        Good find on this!

        “He lost this election by more votes than can be explained by the things that people are concerned about — the voting irregularities, or the DNC. If it was closer, we might have done something differently, but there is no choice. It’s not like we’re stopping because we want to. We’re stopping because those are the rules of the game. ”

        Jane Sanders acknowledges the potential for fraud but thinks it wasn’t enough to swing the election. I’d question that by citing the quote from David Einhorn during the Lehman debacle, “no matter how bad you think it is, it’s worse.”

        1. pretzelattack

          i don’t really know how close it was. how could we possibly know. i agree with another poster, above, all bets are off the table. now my hope is that the republicans are at least as good at stealing elections as the democrats. and all that will get us is 4 years of donald trump–how will we make best make use of that time?

          1. Treadingwaterbutstillkicking

            We can’t know for sure, but what we do know is that the $hill camp lied, kicked, cheated and stole EVERY single vote, every single delegate and every single platform plank they could get.

            Politics have a lot to do with momentum too, something the $hill camp thought about from the very beginning, which I think Bernie really didn’t take seriously enough. It may have started with Iowa, and that hair’s breadth win for $hill was likely more important than he ever imagined. He should’ve had more people on the ground–poll watchers, people with cell phone cameras, lawyers (like BHO in 2008), but he didn’t. He let her slide on every questionable act by her political minions, especially early on, and a lot of that evidence ended up not being collected.

            I have seen the video of Bernie winning a coin flip in Iowa and still haven’t seen it adequately explained either how she got that delegate or why Bernie let her steal it. Does someone here have the story?

        2. low integer

          And it’s not like the corporate media had no effect, even though their influence is considered legitimate for some reason.

      5. Mark Alexander

        Thanks for the link.

        Jane Sanders says, “And we will hold [the Clinton campaign] accountable because we are endorsing her.” But exactly how will they hold Clinton accountable? I’m genuinely interested in the answer. To me it seems like Bernie supporters have little power right now against the tyranny of the majority in the D. party.

        1. rich

          VIDEO: CNN Wolf Blitzer drinks wine, dances to celebrate Hillary’s nomination
          July 29, 2016

          Maybe they were happy it was over, or maybe they were celebrating “history” being made — as they repeated all week — by their preferred candidate.

          Regardless, cameras captured CNN anchor Wolf Blitzer and Chief Political Analyst Gloria Borger drinking wine and dancing with delegates as “Sweet Caroline” played over the loud speakers at the conclusion of the Democratic National Convention.

          CNN aired video of the two taking it all in: Blitzer with a glass of white wine in his hand, and Borger clapping and singing along.

          Our independent, unbiased media?

          1. Treadingwaterbutstillkicking

            Independent, unbiased media?

            No such thing, ever.

            I actually have no problem with subjective media. I vet my own news sources based upon what I think is a pretty well-rounded understanding of how the news media and world in general operate. Just like here, we can’t think about just one thing. We need to see the interactions between individual actors (and psychology/sociology) and structural institutions and even the environment. And how we see and understand those all come loaded with bias.

            No one is neutral. No institution is neutral.

            What I can’t stand, what I hate, is anyone claiming to be independent or unbiased. Being fair-minded and even-handed might be a better claim, but I want people to report the news who are biased towards things like civil liberties or a healthy planet or even labor over corporate interests.

            A mistake, let’s say using the precautionary principle TO PROTECT the environment might cost a corporation some profits, but a mistake in the other direction, TO NOT PROTECT the environment and to help corporate interests could end life on earth as we know it. Where should our bias be? Heck in the case of chemicals in the environment, ALL doubt goest to the corporations and the planet needs to somehow “prove” damages, and even if damages are proven, try to get that same “unbiased” media to tell you about it.

            Let’s stop even thinking a lack of bias is possible and maybe we can build from there!

            Thanks for the video though! And to answer you question–I think a partial answer (not THE answer) is to require everyone to put their cards on the table. All journalists, if claiming public service as protected by the Bill of Rights, should have to not just sign a code of ethics, but should list all conflicts of interests, voting records, tax returns, etc., just like other public office holders. (The corporations should have to too–before every political story on CNN for example they should be required to display who they donated to (HRC) and how much in this and past election cycles) If they don’t want to, fine, but then the public will just know them as the “entertainers” they are, and bad dancers like The Blitz.

  7. Carla

    Here was my comment on The Economist article:

    There is nothing “open” about world government by multinational corporations, and that is what TPP, TTIP and TISA are really about, not “trade.” The Investor State Dispute Settlement (ISDS) provisions of these odious agreements give the decisions of corporate arbitrators-for-hire precedence over those of national supreme courts. More and more people are learning about this and are suitably outraged.

    1. Steve C

      Thank you for this. I have been searching for an easy explanation for ISDS. You have provided it.

    1. craazyboy

      Crap. And here I was looking at Google Mars trying to find a beauuutiful crater to move to.

    2. Vatch

      I’ve seen in movies and comic books that exposure to ionizing radiation (often gamma rays) will give a person super powers. Is it possible that the movies and comic books are mistaken?

    3. Praedor

      Mars is a joke. Fine for a small on-going research station, suitably buried in dirt, but NOT the pie-in-the-sky desires of those like Elon Musk for colonization. Besides being exposed to cosmic and solar wind radiation the entire trip to Mars, Mars itself lacks a magnetic field. Standing on the surface will continue the blast of radiation at nearly the same levels as in space.

      Limited surface time and well-shielded (buried) habitat structures are the only way to do Mars if you have any desire to come home alive OR live very long at all once on Mars.

      There IS an alternative means of travel in deep space that would improve radiation safety by 1) minimizing exposure because transit time is minimized (weeks); 2) can heavily shield the craft with heavy plate and water tanks. There would be NO bone or muscle loss due to extended exposure to zero-g because you could maintain 1 g acceleration (or even higher if you want) ALL the way to your destination. There would be floor and ceiling in the craft, just like on a naval ship. Down is towards the rear where the engine is blazing, up is the nose, the direction you are traveling. It’s called nuclear pulse propulsion. First researched and designed in the 50s, it has been proven viable over the decades since. It converts atomic bombs into truly peaceful, non-destructive use. Spacecraft designed around such propulsion can be built via the same heavy manufacturing systems used to build navy aircraft carriers and cruisers: heavy steel. No need (or desire) for light weight aluminum or composites over light weight frames. No, you get big steel plates and weld them together, thickening walls where you want for radiation protection, and you STILL get to Mars, Saturn, or further in a FRACTION of the time it takes for the most high-tech and modern system currently even envisioned. Hell, you could build a large robotic probe using nuclear pulse propulsion and send it to Alpha Centari and it could arrive within 20 years.

      The BEST thing about this is it would require cooperation with Russia and China, and would be best built and operated as a consortium to share the engineering and building costs, as well as to get the OK to put nukes in space (by necessity). Cooperation instead of competition or hostility. The original project was called “Project Orion”. It was a PEACEFUL design for true space exploration. If it hadn’t been killed off by Kennedy we could literally have bases on Mars, the moons of Saturn, and even Jupiter by now. What killed it? The US military. The scientists and engineers pushing the program needed funding and one of the willing funders was the US Air Force (late 50s, early 60s). The caveat was the Air Force wanted more than just a peaceful spaceship. They pumped it as a space battleship, armed with nukes capable of hitting anywhere on Earth in short order, well above the reach of the Soviets, and even capable of nuking sites on the moon or elsewhere in orbit. THIS turned John Kennedy off and he killed the project. The project was also altered from the original concept: initiated at the height of US nuclear testing, it was thought it could be built on earth in full size and then launched from a remote location from the ground. Dozens of nuclear detonations propelling it from surface to space, but then the scientists and engineers learned from weapons tests about all the radiation problems and decided that a surface launch was a bad idea(tm). It became largely self-funded and on a shoe-string ever since but it progressed to prove, again and again, the concept as viable. Even NASA has some interest in it to this day. It is the ONLY way to reasonably get any large package into deep space, certainly to the next star system, within any reasonable time frame.

      Seriously. You could put 100 men and women on this thing and send it to Mars where they would arrive in a few weeks. A month or so gets you to Saturn. Weight is no limit. You can PACK it with supplies without harm. Look up Project Orion at The British Project Daedalus was related and developed later. Today you could combine ideas of both into a single project using latest technologies and knowledge to produce something better than the originals. Build it in space, get it started out of near-earth orbit, then light the nukes and off it goes.

      1. myshkin

        “nuclear pulse propulsion” very cool.
        “Besides being exposed to cosmic and solar wind radiation the entire trip to Mars, Mars itself lacks a magnetic field. Standing on the surface will continue the blast of radiation at nearly the same levels as in space.”
        If they pack some spf-100 sun screen for Mars, problem solved.

        1. craazyboy

          UVA, B and gamma.

          Plus lift all the heavy stuff in to orbit and build the rocket there.

          Fo a few astrnauts to go to Mars.

          I alsway ask, “wafo?”

          1. Treadingwaterbutstillkicking

            Let’s take care of our own nest first. Not against research on the surface of it, especially unmanned probes, etc. (which could be done as public work projects in an MMT world), but wasting resources while people go hungry, homeless and planet falls apart is a strange priority to me.

      2. low integer

        100% agree that these are solvable problems. But yeah, who would want to give their talent to make breakthroughs for those who are in control these days? Of course it would be weaponized.

        1. Praedor

          Oops. No. It would take 30-40 years to get to Alpha Centauri. It could get up to 0.1 c.

      1. hunkerdown

        Democratic partisans will hate on whatever they’re told to hate on. What’s your value-add, again?

        1. craazyboy

          Well, we know Putin has a Weather Control Machine and he set the thermostat to high. He’s sacrificing his own Siberia to burn down California! Hideous monster.

  8. Steve H.

    – IMF admits disastrous love affair with the euro, apologises for the immolation of Greece

    oo oo WOW!

    Mighty coincidental that coming out now, considering NC readers see nothing new. I see things in a certain way, and those 2.7 million refugees in Turkey are looking like a tsunami if Erdogan actually pivots to the BRICS.

    But it could just be a coincidence…

  9. HBE

    Hollow man article.

    “They are working overtime to scrub away the image of Madeleine Albright from last night, which caused so many Democratic children to have a sleepless night.”

    Hillaryous, I almost hurt myself laughing at that.

    1. Pirmann

      That was very funny. Maddy Albright is a piece of work. Special place in hell, huh. Oh right, because you were so supportive of the potentially-historic McCain-Palin ticket back in ’08, because woman. IIRC.

      And speaking of pieces of work, I tuned in and could not BELIEVE they trotted out William Barber. Dude was on the wrong side of Duke Lacrosse, and conspicuously so. Epic fail. How soon we forget.

  10. Carolinian

    St. Clair’s latest, out this morning.

    To sum it all up

    + Hillary looks and sounds more and more like Cersei Lannister with each new speech.

    And also interesting tidbits

    + In her brisk recitation of the Rodham family history, Hillary somehow left out the fact that her father was a John Bircher. Of course, by the end of Hillary’s 2nd term her father may seem as meek as George McGovern.

    St Clair suggests both candidates are making a “proto-fascist” appeal and no one can deny the deep fascist/authoritarian strains in the Republican Party. But if fascism is about power then the uniform propaganda blasts from the MSM in favor of HRC and the closing of corporate and establishment ranks around her shows how fearful the truly powerful are of popular rebellion. And this is why Hillary must be stopped. If “power corrupts” then it has had years to corrupt her. When it comes to political power Trump would just be getting started.

    1. Butch In Waukegan

      Also this:

      + Hillary has already out-Thatchered the Iron Lady and she hasn’t been elected yet. She’s made the complete metamorphosis from a Goldwater girl to a McGovern woman to a Reagan granny.

      St. Clair also has a quote from Hunter Thompson’s 1972 (1972!!!) book about lesser evil election choices. The Thompson quote ends with this:

      “I understand, along with a lot of other people, that the big thing, this year, is Beating Nixon. But that was also the big thing, as I recall, twelve years ago in 1960—and as far as I can tell, we’ve gone from bad to worse to rotten since then, and the outlook is for more of the same.”

      Is their a word for “beyond rotten”?

      1. Carolinian

        And note the long pedigree of lesser evilism. 1960. It’s the hamster wheel the US left loves to run on.

      2. low integer

        1 Animal decomposition
        1.1 Stages of decomposition
        1.1.1 Fresh
        1.1.2 Bloat
        1.1.3 Active decay
        1.1.4 Advanced decay
        1.1.5 Dry/remains
        There is an appetizing sequence of photos showing a pig corpse going through these stages on the wikipedia page. Sorry everyone!

          1. fresno dan

            O how I yearn that we could rise to the level of putrification, but that is just pie in the sky Utopian fantasies.

    2. Praedor

      Cersei Lannister is a friggin hottie. In spite of her character flaws, she’s smokin (because Lena Headey is gorgeous). So…Hillary can EASILY act like Cersei but she can never EVER “look” like Cersei. Take it back.

      1. craazyboy

        Ditto. Take it back..please! My mind does not want to go there when I see Lena. Games of Thrones is only a movie, I tell myself.

      2. Carolinian

        Will pass along to St Clair. For sure all white not exactly slimming if HRC was going for the hottie look.

      3. Butch In Waukegan

        St. Clair again, from his commentary on Wednesday’s DNC:

        + A few days ago, Michael Moore hauled himself like a stranded walrus onto the set of the Bill Maher Show, where he predicted that Trump was going to win in the fall. Those of us who know Michael Moore knew that this was a con, a scare tactic to drive potential Greens, Libertarians or stay-at-home anarchists to vote for HRC. Michael Moore does this every general election. Flirts with a Third Party candidate, then folds. He has previously confessed his obsession with Hillary, an obsession that borders on the sexual.

        In his book, Downsize This!, Moore confessed his “forbidden love” for Hillary. He described her as “one hot shitkickin’ feminist babe.”

  11. re AE-P/IMF

    AE-P tends to look at the Bretton Woods institutions in a vacuum. That makes board divisions look like regional geopolitics: Asia and Latin America v. US satellites. In reality all this has been brewing in the parallel institutional framework of the G-192, the UN member nations. We never hear about it because the US can’t push it around.

    The Bretton Woods institutions have been wiping their butts with four UN Charter articles since US bankers hijacked the Tripartite Agreement. The UNGA is “the original authority under whose aegis the core institutions of the current architecture were established,” but “the Bank has the money.” The world has been patiently consolidating its authority to bring the World Bank Group and IMF into compliance with the UN Charter. IMF member countries have a legal obligation to pursue progressive fulfillment of economic and social rights.

    At inception the IMF was a relief agency, not a loan shark. If it can’t adapt, it will turn out like NATO, a mile wide, an inch deep, propped up solely by US arm-twisting, and the G-192 – the world – will replace it.

  12. HBE

    Vox interview with Bernie voter article.

    At first I couldn’t believe Vox would publish something like this then I realized they are just building up liberal cred to sheepdog later in the election cycle now that Bernie has finally been done away with.

  13. PlutoniumKun

    Re: Ukraine/Russia

    I’ve hedged my thoughts about this topic for a while as there has been so much propaganda on all sides flying about its very hard to see any kernel of truth. But I think its becoming incontrovertible that there have been strong forces within the western foreign policy/military establishment who have been determined to push for a direct conflict in eastern Europe/Central Asia to ‘confront’ Putin. Why, after all the disasters in Afghanistan and the Middle East, I don’t know, I can only speculate that the warmongers and neo-cons want a fresh sheet of paper to prove that ‘this time, we actually are right’. But it also seems clear that for all his faults, Obama has been a disappointment to them. Why he didn’t fire this lot, rather than just tone down their crazier plans, I don’t know, that’s something for future historians to puzzle over, but it does seem clear that they had to work around him (with a little help from a certain H.C.) to get the conflict they wanted. We can also be I think a little grateful to the Germans for belatedly realising they were being sucked into stupid conflicts and are now a lot more wary. Such a pity Hollande is so useless, traditionally you can rely upon the French to be more pragmatic when it comes to wars.

    But it does raise the stakes for the November elections. I have no idea whether Trump would be able to force his quasi isolationist instincts onto the establishment, or whether he would be pulled along with the need to be seen to ‘be tough’. But its pretty clear that with HC in the White House there would be absolutely no stopping the crazier elements within the defence/foreign policy establishment to get their way. Stupid policies are one thing in the Middle east – its quite another when it involves borders with nuclear armed States.

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      Russians are orthodox slaves, some with squinty eyes. Many white groups only became white in recent years. “White privilege” was anonymity on the street versus being black not the perversion pushed by fraudulent liberals today. In the last few decades, we tolerated a certain kind of black. Much like Jews in the 1930’s who simultaneously ran the world and would be defeated by Germans for being awesome, the Russians are the cause of global warming and will be defeated by exceptional Americans.

      The U.S. is the most racist country in Earth. We might not articulate it because racism is irrational and fear based, but conflict with Russia is simply a 21st white man’s burden for many. We must bring enlightenment to the mad dogs.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        They can’t do this with the Chinese because the propaganda and vaguely positive racism has been how smart at the math Asians are, ignoring the Russians seem to produce the best math departments in the world.

        1. PlutoniumKun

          Thats a fair point – I suppose its an odd victory of identity politics that they are forced to find blue eyed villains to scaremonger about.

          1. NotTimothyGeithner

            Slavs have always been low in the Euro racial hierarchy. “We need breathing room”

    2. clarky90

      Trump is a lover, not a fighter. He wants to get along with everybody, and do lots of “deals”. Seriously. Watch, listen to or read any one of his speeches or press conferences

        1. hunkerdown

          Yes, you will. As long as the bigotry and bullying are Liberal™, you’ll stand in line for hours to vote for them.

          Can you tell me exactly why the DNC shouldn’t be dragged out into the street and given the only form of punishment they can’t make whole in court?

        2. Lambert Strether

          I don’t think that, say, wanting to punch through the screen at the DNC makes you either a bigot or a bully.

          I’m also getting heartily sick of hearing the word “bully.” It’s another term that personalizes systems (although I grant it speaks to professionals seeking to manage groups of children, and especially professional women confronting male chauvanist bosses). Is being a bully worse than fomenting the war in Libya? To liberals, apparently, yes. (Microaggresion is the worst thing in the world, but macro-exploitation is jake with the angels….)

    3. Carolinian

      It’s about money. Billions were to be made in Yeltsin’s Russia. Now not so much. They want a new Yeltsin instead of Putin.

      Plus war is the health of the military industrial state. Cold war will do as long as the defense industry is making profits. Many of the hawkish DC think tanks are funded by these companies.

      1. PlutoniumKun

        Yeah, war is the health of the military industrial state, but you’d think they’d have the sense to realise that business plans rarely survive nuclear attacks. It is much more sensible to focus your wars on people too poor to fight back.

    4. Ranger Rick

      I think it brings to the forefront Russia’s devastatingly effective media strategy more than anything else. The lack of credible, verifiable information on anything happening in Ukraine played a key role in sandbagging any kind of international response to a Russian intervention. Even now people debate if Russia was involved at all.

    5. notabanker

      I worked for a company that was an M&A powerhouse. Over 100 acquisitions in 10 years. I used to joke that when we weren’t acquiring someone else, we would start to acquire ourselves and internal depts would go after each other.

      Same concept here. Once you build the machine, you have to do something with it.

    6. Praedor

      It’s not hard to get the real intent here. The neocons and Hillary THINK they can control this thing with Russia, that they can push and push to get the Bear to (reasonably) react to their provocations JUST SO, then they can have a full Cold War 2.0 up and running full speed. They see it as the ONLY way to maintain Western European unity with the US, and the only way to drive the economies of the west. Get all the big military contractor companies up and running full steam, pumping out tanks, naval vessels, nuke missiles and warheads, rockets, etc. The only form of manufacturing they can think of are those of the original Cold War. They get an “economic boom” with good “manufacturing jobs” that CANNOT be offshored to China, Vietnam, Malaysia, etc. Jobs that MUST be home-grown US jobs or European jobs. Of course, they also get to distract the proles from real problems in their societies because they get to point at the big boogieman Putin (and/or his follow-on) and scream that he’s going to come and get them! The War on Terror ™ is a failure in that regard. All the splendid wars in the ME haven’t done the job of properly distracting the proles from desires for housing, food, HEALTHCARE, etc. They need something more, something as “great” as the old Cold War.

      They THINK they can control it as they create from nothing a conflict that doesn’t actually exist or even need to exist. I think they are wrong and it will very VERY likely go pear-shaped and the result will be nukes flying about. You CANNOT get into a shooting war with Russia and actually see them lose. Impossible. Of course, making them LOSE isn’t the goal. If they LOSE then you lose the need for a Cold War 2.0 with all its attendant “defense” spending. No enemy to defend against, no need to defense spend. In any case the Russians will NOT lose, they WILL use nukes to avoid losing, just as we would. Hillary and Nuland, etc, don’t see that, don’t accept that. They think they can finesse this thing. They cannot, anymore than they’ve finessed Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Ukraine.

      1. Antifa

        Indeed. The Ukraine coup and fiasco of a color revolution was a carefully staged trap for Russia to walk into, and get embroiled in a conventional war scenario with the western Ukraine, supported by the USA and Europe. It could have gone on for decades.

        Putin certainly provided all the help the ethnic Russians in the Donbass needed, but without being seen to do so. The Ukro-Nazis in Kiev came unglued when they got shot to pieces out in the field, and now the country is effectively broken, but hasn’t provided the proxy war Hillary wants and needs.

        Putin has stated very simply that if you attack a nuclear-armed nation, you are starting a nuclear war. It works like that. That’s why nuclear-armed nations don’t get attacked. The result will be like a duel to the death between one man with a sharpened stick and one man with a flamethrower.

        At some point in the next five to ten years, the Donbass region will probably decide to rejoin Russia by a public plebiscite, since the hard feelings this splendid little war have engendered are not going to go away.

        1. Praedor

          I’d love to see that (Donbass join with Crimea and rejoin Russia). Besides putting nice punctuation on the utterly FAILED Nuland coup game, solidify Crimea’s security (to the Russian military base there), and it would also strip the gas fields of Donbass from VP Biden’s son.

          I mean C’MON! THE first deal made with the Nazis in Kiev after the coup, before anyone had even moved into the vacated government offices, was to give US access rights for fracking Eastern Ukraine gas fields via Biden’s son! No corruption there at all. The rest of Europe has rejected fracking (and GMOs) so the US goes in and decides its going to force fracking (and GMOs) in via the back door anyway, by way of Ukraine.

          Utter failure.

          1. low integer

            I’d love to see that (Donbass join with Crimea and rejoin Russia). Besides putting nice punctuation on the utterly FAILED Nuland coup game, solidify Crimea’s security (to the Russian military base there), and it would also strip the gas fields of Donbass from VP Biden’s son.

            And hurt Monsanto. Win!
            Adding: I see you mentioned this.

  14. DJG

    May in Poland with Eastern Europeans. That is, Eastern European governments in demographic collapse as they engage in neoliberal experiments. Poland has always exported “excess” people rather than institute real reforms. Romania is another big exporter these days. Check out the Wikipedia entry for a Central / Eastern European country. Demographic collapse is fairly uniform. Lithuania is a shocker. So is Hungary. Latvia and Estonia appear to have a policy of reducing their populations to get rid of Russians. And this is what the EU was founded for?

  15. Jim Haygood

    From a Wednesday “Fed Groundhog Day” post:

    Maybe an Italian bank crisis will provide the excuse to stand pat at the Sept. meeting. Anyhow, something will come along. :-)

    Well, that was quick! Today’s first estimate of 2Q GDP was a crappy 1.2% (versus expectations of around 2.5%). Plus, 1Q GDP was slashed from a feeble 1.1% to an even weaker 0.8%.

    So this morning you catch watch furry brown little FOMC members scurrying comically across the lawn and diving back into their burrows. Time for a rethink!

  16. DJG

    How is it possible that other Italian banks don’t want to absorb bad debt? The EU, CBE, and IMF, always thinking that they can put one over on those excitable / irrational southern Europeans. Too bad that Fra Luca Pacioli invented double-entry bookkeeping four or five hundred years ago, which the Italians took up enthusiastically.

    I’m detecting a re-run of the Cyprus fiasco, in which the Troika That Is ruined Cypriot banks because one had fallen apart. Why waste a crisis?

  17. clarky90

    Steven Thrasher wrote this
    “As Trump was warmed up by a real estate developer, I felt as if I wasn’t living in reality, but inside a virtual reality scenario dreamt up by Ayn Rand………..”

    S Thrashers writing annoyed me. It is not so much the “hatefulness” of his speech (He has worked himself into a bit of a non-“loving” frenzy), it was a petty omission that caught my eye..

    Donald Trump was introduced by his eldest daughter, Ivanka Trump, who is a real estate developer, not introduced by “a real estate developer”.

    I strongly urge people to watch Trump’s speeches and press conferences directly on youtube and make up you own opinions about his worthiness/unworthiness. The reports you read about him have mostly been corrupted (rigged) by Big Money. (ie, they are not true or accurate IMO).

    The NeoTotalitarians think that they can survive a nuclear war in their fortified Fuhrer Bunkers. If they accomplish the unthinkable, soon they will start to pine for their superyachts and private jets. Duhhhhh, whose bright idea was it to blow up Earth? We are soooo bored now!

      1. PlutoniumKun

        I’ve become all conspiracy minded the last year or so reading the Guardian. It seems that even when they publish a good writer, like Thomas Frank, his article is timed is positioned in such a way to gain minimal attention.

    1. low integer

      I strongly urge people to watch Trump’s speeches and press conferences directly on youtube and make up you own opinions about his worthiness/unworthiness.

      I imagine most here do.

        1. Frank

          But you’ll vote for a bully and a liar? Given the effects of the Clinton crime bill some 20 years on, might you acknowledge that perhaps she is lying about not being a bigot?

          1. Eureka Springs

            I keep asking myself what difference does it make if Clinton indescriminately wages war and class war upon everyone… or teh Donald descriminately selects a few?

            This whole “bigotry” game is myopic and at least as ridiculous among the nattering in the blogos anyway as the Putin did it game….

            Negotiating among monsters, for monsters.

        2. SpringTexan

          And while he might not do some of the horrible things he espouses, as president he WOULD have power to deport even far more people than Obama did, causing tremendous misery.

          When you talk about the “less effective” evil, you forget the things he WOULD have power to do.

          That’s why I do understand the choice to vote for her in a battleground state — since I’m not in one, no reason at all to vote for Clinton and of course I won’t. And I think there are points both ways about whether to vote for her or not in a battleground state, it’s not a simple matter. (No case for voting for Trump, though.)

    2. craazyboy

      Well, but note the spelling of handles Ayn and Ivanka. See any similarity to the spelling of Vladimir???? Hmmm? Looks kinda “Cyrillic” if you ask me. Language of the Cylons – and we know how that turned out.

      They nuked us and we had to flee to outer space!

    3. Pat

      Gee I wonder how he would describe Chelsea. Failed financier, failed broadcaster, token head of faux charity? Not for nothing not only does Ivanka Trump develop real estate, she also has had a fair amount of success in fashion with lines for jewelry, clothes and shoes. (Mind you she is probably rightfully being sued for knocking off others work, but the lines themselves are successful).

      Neither daughter was there in their professional capacity, they were there to attempt to humanize their respective parent – both of which have problems in that area.

  18. Jim Haygood

    Atlanta’s sweet revenge against some thieving one-percenters:

    In Cobb County, Georgia, taxpayers watched as county officials borrowed $376 million by issuing bonds to finance the new SunTrust Park for the Atlanta Braves.

    During the process, ballpark opponents were barred from speaking against the lending scheme, the Braves’ president shrouded the deal in secrecy to prevent a public vote, and the Georgia Supreme Court struck down an appeal against issuing the bonds.

    Keep in mind that the Braves’ current ballpark just turned 20 years old this summer. [But] the people of Cobb County never expressed an overwhelming desire to pay for a new ballpark for the Braves owner — $14 billion media conglomerate Liberty Media Group.

    That became apparent July 26, when Cobb County residents voted out County Commission Chairman Tim Lee by an almost 2-to-1 margin. His opponent, Mike Boyce, ran primarily on one issue: Lee’s role in the ballpark debacle.

    Sports stadiums probably are the most extreme example of taxing the poor and middle class to enrich billionaires.

    1. Carolinian

      Fortunately I no longer live in Cobb county but won’t the ousted Chairman just get a job with the Braves? Big loss for him.

    2. abynormal

      its a tiny stadium…more classification. i do feel for Cobb residents…they have no idea they’re going to get milked at least double, for the hwy & bridges from I575 to 285…leading to the promiseland of the vanities.

      and wait till the homedepot godfather seeks reimbursements from Fulton Co., for having to delay his new football stadium due to lack of skilled workers being thrown onto the baseball arena debacle.

      i’ve witnessed two bridge spans fall…one by design and one not. the baseball stadium and surrounding bridges & hwys are being constructed under a timeline NEVER attempted. EVER. come to Atlanta at your own risk!

      1. Carolinian

        Like the place wasn’t already crazy pie enough. But all the trees are pleasant if you never get in your car.

    3. Pat

      And another example of how ‘run government like a business’ from business people is bunk. You finance the stadium you get a portion of the gate or you get payments with INTEREST PERIOD. You do not do it for vague promises of part time jobs.

    4. Jagger

      All that money to build a new stadium for a last place baseball team. The Braves better get better quick or we will see a brand new empty stadium when it opens.

    5. Louis

      Jim Haygood wrote:

      Sports stadiums probably are the most extreme example of taxing the poor and middle class to enrich billionaires.

      Some times people vote do to this to themselves, such as when Denver built it’s current football stadium for the Broncos some years back. In this case it was the voters–not those in elected office–that choose to have taxpayers subsidize it’s funding, when the owner made a veiled threat to move the team.

      On some level, people get the government they deserve.

    1. craazyboy

      Ha! This looks like satire! Awesome totally. “Don’t boo. Vote!” hahahaha. More good ones too!

    2. Jake Mudrosti

      When Chelsea Manning is imprisoned, abused, and subjected to further punishment for an attempted suicide, is “avenging angel” the new term of art?

  19. Katniss Everdeen

    It is the strangest thing.

    I watched baseball last night not “history” being made. I expected to wake up this morning to rousing scenes of balloons dropping and and soaring praise for a rhetorical triumph.

    It didn’t happen.

    morning joe opened with a clip of the immigrant Muslim father who lost his military son in the Middle East lecturing Donald Trump on the constitution, which was proclaimed the most “moving” appearance at the convention! hillary was judged to have done “what she needed to do.” Whatever that means.

    By the time morning joe was over, the discussion had turned to what happens if clinton doesn’t get any bump in the polls from the convention. The reliable ed rendell was called upon to opine that “nobody” gets a bump from conventions anymore. Made me think somebody knows something the rest of us don’t. Yet.

    I din’t watch much of this convention. I was more interested in how it would be spun by the democrat propaganda machine msnbs. And I’ve got to say, it seems like reasons for a ringing endorsement were pretty hard to come by.

    But, apparently the convention was flawlessly “produced.”

    Maybe I’m wrong, but I found this “morning after” awfully subdued after all the rah rah-ing that has been going on for the last couple of days.

    1. Jim Haygood

      On a more serious note, Hillary’s white pantsuit at least was an incremental improvement over the blinding electric blue one.

      If only she’d dared to accessorize it with white ermine …

        1. craazyboy

          purple would have clashed with the red white and blue balloons at the end of the show
          hillary has some fashion sense

          1. petal

            mmm good point, craazyboy. I didn’t think along those lines-the clashing. Unity! All must work together! And with white, one thinks purity, I guess. The purple will come out later. Or maybe her bathrobe is purple.

      1. notabanker

        During the convention North Korea was trending on twitter. Reports of them declaring war on the US, when what they really did was say US actions have declared war on them….. yada yada

        I immediately thought to myself, she won’t be wearing the Kim-Jong ens-amble.

        1. Pat

          No it was much more flattering notch collar jacket over a high boat neck camisole/tee. She did show her neck.

      2. Arizona Slim

        A white pantsuit? Good grief! You NEVER wear white when you’re on TV.

        Why not? Because white blooms into the camera, that’s why.

        Better to wear the blues or the grays.

        So says an acquaintance, who was an image consultant and makeup artist for several presidents.

        1. Jim Haygood

          All true.

          But the symbolism of pure white trumps [sic] such technocratic concerns.

          Plus the blooming suggests the inner glow of a divine being.

        2. Pat

          The white thing is not as bad with HD video for some reason. Previously most whites were “teched” for film and video production meaning they were lightly dyed pale gray or beige, not so much anymore. But it still provides other problems. Sometime late last night there was a lighting session to account for it, I’ll bet.

        3. grayslady

          Well, that’s certainly true for men’s shirts. You never see a man who is experienced in tv interviews or appearances wearing a white shirt.

          1. Patricia

            The Christian evangelical world, as well as that of conservative Catholicism, are as corrupt as the government, and in the same ways.

      3. low integer

        I think the Dilbert guy might have been playing a practical joke on Clinton by claiming that the consistency of her outfits would help her “persuade” the public.
        Adding: persuading Clinton to do this shows he hasn’t studied persuasion in vain.

    2. tegnost

      It takes a lot of energy to lie, and they’re waking up this morning wondering if they’ll be able to do it for another 3 months, after which they will no longer need to, they’ll just go back o the same old “who has the gold makes the rules”…

    3. Roger Smith

      Regarding that clip that is being pumped today, what is there to lecture Trump about? Who is the one that voted for and still openly supports Middle Eastern destruction? Who was the one endorsed by the man who kills innocent people with drones and continues to send US citizens over there? These poor people were likely hit with both ends of the stick and they still can’t see clearly.

      1. Katniss Everdeen

        Trump is a racist who hates Muslims and wants to prevent their immigration.

        Compassionate americans just kill them.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          Just do it, but don’t make a mess or draw attention.

          Get the job done, and I don’t want to hear about it. The ladies at my tea party might faint.

          Thus, for example, discrimination goes on, but no one should use bad words in public.

          Political correctness at all cost – that’s our propaganda strategy. We create a make-believe clean world.

          Many are shocked at Trump’s disregard for their idea of utopia.

          That’s another reason his numbers will continue to be under-counted. People will vote for him but not necessarily say so publicly.

    4. Pat

      Interesting, thank you for taking that hit. Apparently their focus groups were not impressed…

    5. Optimader

      Watch baseball rather than the DNC doing the snake dance …Would that be considered out of the pan and into the fire or the other way around?

  20. allan

    The year of ‘Neither’: Why Reuters/Ipsos is tweaking its U.S. presidential poll

    In a presidential campaign notable for its negativity, the option of “Neither” candidate appears to be an appealing alternative, at least to participants in the Reuters/Ipsos opinion poll.

    Many voters on both sides have been ambivalent in their support for Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton and Republican nominee Donald Trump, complicating the task of the pollsters trying to track the race.

    That sentiment may help explain an apparent skew that recently emerged in the Reuters/Ipsos poll results. Given the choice, a relatively large group of voters opted for “Neither/Other” candidate compared with other major polls, leading to an underreporting of several percentage points for one or other of the two major contenders at times in the race.

    As a result, Reuters/Ipsos is amending the wording of the choice and eliminating the word “Neither,” bringing the option in line with other polls.

    The revolution will not be polled.

    1. Katniss Everdeen

      I live in Florida, an apparent “swing state,” and have a land line. I have never been “polled” before this year. Now it happens once a week.

      Usually they are robo-polls. Press 1 for “no” press 2 for “yes.” Many times the assumptions and qualifications inherent in the questions make “neither” the only answer, but there are no other choices. So I just hang up.

      I’ve no idea how or if that “response” is scored, but, having experienced it first hand, I’m not buying any of this polling shit.

    2. RabidGandhi

      Watch for this to get downplayed in the media as we get closer to and after the election. We will hear a lot about one candidate having 42% to the other candidate’s 45%, but the actual percentage of eligible voters who vote for the eventual winner will be very low. This is a tribute to the effectiveness of both parties’ vote suppression strategy.

  21. grayslady

    An excellent opinion piece from Marketwatch by a writer who actually seems to understand the influences on voters in this year’s presidential contest.

  22. John

    So it appears that they’ve managed to kick the can once again and have temporarily averted an Italian banking crisis. The ECB is set to approve a 5 billion euro cash call guaranteed by a consortium of 8 banks (including Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank, and Citi) and coordinated by JP Morgan and Mediobanca. Part of the plan is a 10 billion euro sale of insolvent loans.

    Every time it seems that the they’re about to fall off a cliff they manage to find a last-minute way to keep the party going…I’m starting to think that the euro will be around for a lot longer than we’ve been predicting. Of course Europe will be stuck in a low-growth, high unemployment malaise, but everyone still prefers it to the alternative (for many reasons, especially the IT mess it would create).

    I can’t believe the banks that are part of this deal…who would want such troubled assets?

    1. craazyboy

      The devil would be in the details. And who is it that buys “E10B” in insolvent loans?

  23. Peter Pan

    John Helmer. Important. Helmer does himself a huge disservice with this insider-y headline.

    Can someone explain what qualifies as an “insider-y headline”? Is it the *pugnacious* quality of the headline?

    I wonder if Sergei Pugachev donated any money to the Clinton Foundation?

  24. Pat

    Oh, I do hope lots of people are keeping the Nancy Pelosi ‘sound bite interview’ on The View (not to mention Behar’s misrepresentation of Trump’s statements). She just said that Trump knows he shouldn’t be President and is the gift that keeps on giving and is helping them elect Democrats.

    I’m going to be blunt if Democrats really wanted to capitalize on that gift they should have put someone else at the top of their ticket and supported less corporate hacks down ticket. Personally I believe that Pelosi is going to have a really sad election day if that is what she wanted and believes. Mind you there is no real evidence that the Democrats really want to elect Democrats, so she may be overjoyed behind closed doors.

    1. Jim Haygood

      “… is helping them elect Democrats”

      Like in 2010 — Repubs STILL haven’t gotten over their butthurt from that shellacking. /sarc

  25. petal

    Peter Welch (D-VT) is not returning $8000 Comcast donated to him. His wife instead will recuse herself from deciding a case Comcast is involved in that is before the Public Service Board. He said “that because Citizens United allows any wealthy person to flood Vermont with money for a potential challenger, he is keeping this contribution.”

    1. Arizona Slim

      And, let me guess: Sanders will not run for re-election in 2018. Welch will be the DNC’s hand-picked replacement.

  26. afisher

    Due Diligence: Today there was a link here about an email leak re: Breedlove / NATO / Ukraine. I may have slept through that original story on him, sorry. But I needed to try and understand, which always takes more time than ignoring it…again. The trail took me to a site: DC Leaks – of which there is very little information, then down the rabbit hole to read from RT and Intercept and end up reading a blog about CFR type, the Potomac Foundation (karber).

    It ended with a blogger telling their story about the Foundation and it is why people need to perform due diligence as the piece appeared to be part of a subtle smear campaign that even caught up some people who are considered pretty good investigative reporters, more interested in the gotcha moment than substance. The tip-off was their quote about Wiki information and the foundations 990 form. It was grossly out of date and a lie. One of the few things that I really like about Wiki is the history index key and when someone writes, no info available and the history has been on-line for years…expect a fabrication.

    I am seeing similar behavior at sites that I once thought had good people who actually cared about political issues who are knee-jerking responses to baited commentary.

    It distresses me that so many are willing to buy clickbait articles and information and knee-jerk rhetoric engineered to incite instead of thinking. The GOP appear to have captured many by their relentless attacks on HRC and people repeat the message and no longer think. I’m not a huge fan of HRC and may not vote for her, but at least I am not knee-jerk repeating what the GOP have been saying for more than 2 years without at least wondering why if she is such a criminal, that the GOP haven’t found proof.

    The Clinton Foundation: If HRC is elected, all the rants about that Foundation, won’t that be moot, as it will have to be placed in a Blind Trust.

    Will Congress allow HRC the same freedom to use the Patriot Act from GWB era to use troops, is there any responsibility or demand to call them out? While weirdly, people want to give DTrump a free pass for saying that the nuclear weapons is better than sending troops because $$$$.

    NAFTA via TPP. What if the GOP pass TPP after Nov election? They have said that the only reason that they have held off their approval vote is to not give Obama the legacy. All the ranting and voting denying complaints are pretty much moot.

    Vote, but please think first. That is my rant for today.

    1. low integer

      Sanders did the most damage to Clinton, along with the DNC email leak, not the GOP.

      “wondering why if she is such a criminal, that the GOP haven’t found proof.”

      Do you really think the GOP want to bring the public’s attention to corruption? Note that Trump is considered an outsider by the GOP.

      “The Clinton Foundation: If HRC is elected, all the rants about that Foundation, won’t that be moot, as it will have to be placed in a Blind Trust.”

      No, because presumably she already owes donors a lot of favors.

      1. Yves Smith Post author


        The GOP lacks subpoena powers. Pretty hard to prove misconduct in the absence of an investigation or an internal leaker with real dirt, as in lots of records. And I’m sure anyone who thought about that would think twice, given how powerful and famously vengeful the Clintons are. You don’t strike a king unless you can kill him.

    2. Daryl

      > wondering why if she is such a criminal, that the GOP haven’t found proof.

      Because why bring it up now when doing it after she is elected could totally paralyze the government. (which is their favorite thing to do!)

      1. Pat

        Adding that if it is done after the election they are setting up the next election when they no longer have the Trump problem.

    3. Pat

      Here’s the thing, neither party are moral ethical players anymore. There are very few people in national politics who aren’t about “me first”. What we consider Clinton’s crimes (and they are crimes) are SOP for most of these guys. So why should we believe the attacks -we shouldn’t we should look beyond them. For instance Benghazi did deserve an investigation, just not what Congress investigated. Has the email server investigation ever focused on her illegal avoidance of FOIA? It should, but hey they understand that.

      Like I said, she is a criminal. It is just that most of the people ‘investigating’ are as well, or would like to be.

    4. Katniss Everdeen

      The Clinton Foundation: If HRC is elected, all the rants about that Foundation, won’t that be moot, as it will have to be placed in a Blind Trust.

      No. Not “moot.” Not even close to “moot.”

      In the interest of “due diligence,” here is an article to get you started with regard to the clinton foundation.

      The clinton foundation was an issue when clinton was named secretary of state. It was supposed to have been handled. Both clintons “promised.”

      It was not, and her state department employees were paid not only by the taxpayers, but by various foundation donors, and the “foundation” was contracted to provide state department services and paid with taxpayer funds.

      Replace the word “blind” with the word incestuous for accuracy.

      And before you put your faith in “blind” trusts, try doing some “due diligence” on Bill Frist, HCA and Medicare fraud.

    5. Yves Smith Post author

      No, despite the fact that the Clintons run the Clinton Foundation like their personal candy jar, legally it’s independent. I will ask a tax expert, but I am pretty sure your blind trust assumption is wrong, although she’d have to resign from any active role.

  27. grayslady

    Social Security, an otherwise reasonably well run institution, has finally gone over the edge. I just received an email telling me that if I want to use my online SS account, I need to have a cell phone with text messaging capability. After entering my log in and password, they will then text me a one-time key that I can use to access my account. If I don’t have a cell phone (which I don’t), I can no longer access my SS account online.

    Do these people even think? Do they know that only 27% of all seniors (according to Pew Research) even own a cell phone? The only reason I signed up for an online account to begin with is that Brian Krebs alerted readers to a scam that was taking place with stolen SS numbers. He advised setting up an online account before some crook set up a phony online account in your name. So that’s what I did. Made sense to me. Now, I can’t even access my own account. Insane!

    1. Arizona Slim

      Scammers love to send this kind of e-mail. ISTR that the feds like to send formal notices by snail mail.

      1. grayslady

        That’s true, of course. But at the time I set up the online account, you didn’t have to provide a phone number or cell phone number. It was all supposed to be online! Even my bank allows me to log in to see my activity without providing a cell phone number. If, for some reason, I’m using a browser other than the one I normally use, the bank sends me a one-time access via email, not cell phone text. Crazy!

      2. Anne

        It does not appear that this is any kind of scam:

        From the May 26, 2016, statement of acting commissioner Carolyn W. Colvin to the House Oversight Committee:

        Additionally, to protect citizens’ personally identifiable information further, we continue to improve authentication for our online services. In compliance with Executive Order 13681 (“Improving the Security of Consumer Financial Transactions”), we are changing our current multifactor authentication process for my Social Security from optional to mandatory for all users. Upon implementation this summer, all customers must enter a username, password, and a one-time passcode texted to a registered cell phone in order to access their my Social Security account. In the future, we expect to offer additional multi-factor options, pursuant to Federal guidelines. The National Institute of Standards of Technology is working on a revised guideline, and we are providing input into that process.

    2. Anne

      Strangely enough, I had just gone online to my SS account yesterday, curious to see what they were projecting as my monthly benefit if I retire at 66 (2019); I, too, later got that e-mail about the new security feature going into effect on August 1st.

      And i had pretty much the same reaction you did, but then I wondered how many seniors have computers, because if they don’t have computers (or tablets or iPads or whatever), they aren’t using online accounts at all.

      I’d guess that for the rising seniors, as it were, this isn’t going to be a problem.

      1. fresno dan

        I have a cell foam….I bought the holder for a cell phone first, but than decided all the rigmarole for getting a cell phone was too annoying. So I just have the Styrofoam spacer that was in the holder.
        It is useful at all those retailers that want your phone number – I tell them that it is 1-2-3 –when they express skepticism I just take out my styrofoam that has 1-2-3 written on it – typically they are so gobsmacked that they forget to charge me….
        And when I talk on it in restaurants I usually get desert for free….

    3. Jagger

      Social Security, an otherwise reasonably well run institution, has finally gone over the edge. I just received an email telling me that if I want to use my online SS account, I need to have a cell phone with text messaging capability. After entering my log in and password, they will then text me a one-time key that I can use to access my account. If I don’t have a cell phone (which I don’t), I can no longer access my SS account online.

      That sounds like a possible scam to me. Be very careful. Call someone at Social Security and discuss first before providing anyone your log in and password.

      1. Paul Tioxon

        Yeah, I saw that as well. Asking the post 65 year old generation to be text savy or else? I’m not sure we are dealing with anything less than a scam. Call congressman/senator directly and complain and wait for a real answer. This reeks of phony. IRS phone scams are almost monthly now in my area. All real communications from IRS and SSA are almost exclusively in writing, delivered by the US Postal Service with references to local brick and mortar offices.

      2. Anne

        You aren’t providing anyone with your user name and password via email.

        From the email I received from SS:

        When you sign in at with your username and password, we will ask you to add your text-enabled cell phone number. The purpose of providing your cell phone number is that, each time you log in to your account with your username and password, we will send you a one-time security code you must also enter to log in successfully to your account.

        Each time you sign into your account, you will complete two steps:

        Step 1: Enter your username and password.
        Step 2: Enter the security code we text to your cell phone (cell phone provider’s text message and data rates may apply).

        The process of using a one-time security code in addition to a username and password is one form of “multifactor authentication,” which means we are using more than one method to make sure you are the actual owner of your account.

        I don’t know if anyone else has had this experience, but I have a computer at home, one at work and I have a smartphone. If my bank does not “recognize” the device with which I am accessing my account, it will send a code to the cell phone associated with the account by text, which I then have to enter online before my bank will allow me access.

        Makes sense to me, and even when it is slightly annoying, I’d rather have to take a couple minutes to do it than have my bank assume that there is no way someone else could have hacked my computer to get access to my account.

      1. grayslady

        Thanks for the info. Interestingly, NIST seems to be concerned with the possibility of hacking simulated phone services, such as VoIP or Google Voice. I’ve never had a robocall to my Google Voice account, whereas, on 800 Notes, I constantly see people complaining about robocalls on their cell phone. I think better authentication questions–not just stupid ones like “What was your mother’s maiden name?”–are preferable to two factor authentication.

  28. Jim Haygood

    With the Yellenites back in their burrows after today’s GDP shocker, Amazon, Facebook, The Goog, even dull-as-dishwater Microsoft, are all busting out huge.

    Looks like Bubble III’s gonna blow out with a final bang.

    Well, gotta go — Dr Hussman’s out on a ledge again, alternately sobbing and shaking his fist at the “fools” watching from the sidewalk below.

    1. allan

      The punch bowl is practically demanding to be taken away.
      Chairman Yellen, tear down this ZIRP.

    2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Gold too.

      With a gutted manufacturing base*, any hint of the end of the global reserve currency status will add to the specter of hyperinflation.

      *Voluntary in our case. Involuntary for many defeated nations.

  29. Kim Kaufman

    How the Democratic Party Befriended Megacorporation Uber for Its Convention
    Posted on Jul 28, 2016
    By Sonali Kolhatkar

    “Barred from operating in Philadelphia until just two weeks before the convention, the story of how Uber wound its way into a cozy spot at the Democratic convention is illustrative of the Democratic Party’s contempt for labor and the economic interests of working-class people. “

    1. Arizona Slim

      Yes, darn those Philly cab drivers! Why, some of them might even be worth talking to!

      1. S M Tenneshaw

        Hey, Tom “Flatman” Friedman fashioned a whole career out of his talks with cab drivers.

  30. Manafort's last hurrah

    The campaign parallels with Operation CHAOS and CREEP are incredibly blatant. And this time the Dems seem determined to resist by crushing internal division and running right – no McCarthy this time – as Republicans immediately outflank them to the left with the merest headfake. All we need now is a winsome young woman holding a sign that says BRING US TOGETHER. Except this time instead of a hippy chick it’ll need to be a Neo-Nazi.

  31. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Attacking Trump for the Few Sensible Things He Says is Both Bad Politics and Bad Strategy.

    Also, false attacks make Trump stronger.

    By twisting ‘if you already have her emails, make them available’ to ‘go hack her,’ these amateurs just make him more legendary than he already is, by attributing to him things no one did or could have done.

  32. low integer

    A token economics contribution: Australia headed for recession next year, Professor Steve Keen says
    One thing that people forget when it comes to Australia is that the politicians seem more than happy to prop up the Aus. RE market via Chinese investment. Due to the huge population discrepancy between the countries it seems to me that there may be some life in the bubble yet, and the banks will do everything they can to prevent the bubble popping imo.
    Would be very interested to hear any insight on this. While I have no dog in this race (apart from hoping to be able to afford a house one day), I have some family who are precariously placed in the RE market.

    1. low integer

      I have some family who are precariously placed in the RE market.

      In case anyone is wondering, these are not investment properties. They are, amazingly enough in the current Aus. RE climate, family homes.

    2. low integer

      I should point out that the politicians are only prepared to prop up the metropolitan areas, and the country towns are hurting badly. I’m not a country type but I feel for those guys. Wish they would stop voting for the Nationals, but I can understand their uncertainty leads them to vote against their interests in the name of what they are familiar with. The exact same thing that makes country types the genuine people they are makes them vulnerable to politicians with no compunction about taking advantage of them.

  33. Kim Kaufman

    How Clinton quelled an insurgency

    She relied on the graciousness of a rival to help silence her critics and present a unified picture to a national audience.

    By Annie Karni, Gabriel Debenedetti and Edward-Isaac Dovere

    07/29/16 01:15 AM EDT

    Fun details:

    “After the roll call, the protests moved outside the hall. One of Clinton’s most aggressive surrogates, super PAC maestro David Brock, was chased through the halls of the Wells Fargo Center by two Sanders delegates after Bill Clinton’s Tuesday night speech, according to a Democrat who witnessed the spectacle. “They were yelling ‘you f—g jerk,’” said the Democrat.”

    1. Treadingwaterbutstillkicking

      That is friggin’ awesome. Only politically savvy Berners would even know what he looked like, better yet getting to verbally assault that criminal sociopath in person and in what he probably thought was a “safe space” for him.

      Too bad it was Politico though. It would’ve been interesting to see how Hunter S. Thompson would’ve written it.

  34. Kim Kaufman

    Jane Sanders: Why Bernie Voters Shouldn’t Get Over It

    Bernie’s wife discusses her proudest and most difficult campaign moments, the DNC email leak and the future of his revolution

    “We did everything we could, but we didn’t win. And they were so sad about it. People have been making it sound like they’re mad, and they should just get over it. No they shouldn’t! They shouldn’t just get over it! What do you expect? How do you turn on a dime? We understand that. We understand that we earned their support and their trust. Now Hillary Clinton has to earn their support and their trust. And we will hold [the Clinton campaign] accountable because we are endorsing her. We are that much more committed to making sure [she follows through on her promises], instead of saying, Oh, it’s politics as usual, people change. We’re not going to let that happen. Not without a big fight, if anything. If the Democratic Party starts backing away from the platform, ever, we will fight like crazy to support the work that all of these millions of people did.”

    1. low integer

      Fuck Syria is a mess. I’ve just seen some helicopter or drone footage from above Allepo and the place is absolutely fucked. I hope Obama and the hawks are proud of themselves.

      1. Plenue

        Eastern Aleppo is certainly a bombed out husk. But the only inhabitants there are the few thousand ‘rebels’ and 30-40,000 civilians, most of them relatives of the fighters. Western Aleppo, home to over a million people, never left government control and has largely remained a functioning city. The only bombing there is when the eastern militants send shells over. The media has consistently failed to distinguish between the two sections of the city, regularly portraying things as if the SAA and Russians are blockading and bombing a city of hundreds of thousands.

        SAA infantry finally reached the last remaining rebel supply line into eastern Aleppo two days ago (after having it effectively locked down with accurate artillery fire for over a week). Russia has proposed setting up checkpoints to allow both civilians and disarmed fighters to leave the city. If you’re there and want to leave, put down your weapons and walk out. This farce is finally effectively over, all the SAA has to do now is butcher any counterattacks and wait a maximum of three months for the militants supplies to run out.

        Virtually all of the stories in the last week or so (and there’s been a steady stream of them) about civilians being bombed have been coming from Manbij, the city being besieged by the Kurdish YPG. I don’t know what the head-honchos in the Air Force are thinking, but the US has been doing all the stuff it consistently accuses the Russians of doing in terms of picking the wrong targets for airstrikes around Manbij. So much so that the media has been forced to drop its policy of artificial ambiguity, since the USAF is literally the only air force operating in that area.

        1. low integer

          Thanks for this, fills in a few gaps in my understanding of the situation. The UN is currently going apoplectic, claiming Russia’s safe passageway is a trap btw. Shameless.

          1. Plenue

            One of the ways to gauge how well the war against ISIS, AQ, and the ‘moderates’ in Syria is going is to see how much the media is whining about Russian bombing. The claims of bombed hospitals and the like are almost always poorly substantiated and sometimes outright fraudulent (and in fact a leaked NATO paper reveals how impressed Western officials have been with the accuracy of Russian bombing). It’s also worthwhile to keep track of when the UN calls for new negotiations. As that last supply road into Aleppo was cut there was a flurry of media reports about starving civilians in Aleppo and calls for everyone to sit down at a table and negotiate a compromise.

            Russia fell for that once, and the ceasefire only served to allow the US, Turkey, and the Gulf States to resupply the ‘rebels’. There will not be a second ceasefire. Russia has also repeatedly said they’ll stop bombing ‘moderates’ if the US would only give them a list of the ‘good guys’ who shouldn’t be targeted. The US has mostly made up excuses in response, including claiming some groups are too ‘integrated’ with the Islamists and will take months to ‘sort out’. The Russians are being too generous; the two UN Security Resolutions about fighting AQ and ISIS make it clear that if you work with terrorists you are also a terrorist and are a valid target.

            Unfortunately another gauge is when ISIS kills a bunch of civilians, usually in countries that aren’t Syria or Iraq. When they’re really getting their asses kicked on the battlefield they have a tendency to blow up a market as a show of…force? I’m not sure what their goal is, since they really just make more people their enemies and reveal how pathetic they are. Unable to win a battle, they instead resort to killing unsuspecting, defenseless people.

    2. low integer

      News in Aus. is reporting the name of a “militant” who was the target of the attack at the hospital but not who dropped the bomb. Doesn’t make sense. Syrian Observatory of Human Rights aka one religiously motivated fashion shopkeeper in the UK was also cited. FFS!

  35. Plenue

    “Astronauts who reach deep space ‘far more likely to die from heart disease’”

    It should be clear to anyone who has been paying even a modicum of attention that the various pushes for a manned Mars mission are virtually guaranteed to get people (probably the whole crew) killed. To such an extent they might as well prosecute the advocates and mission bosses with manslaughter after the whole affair inevitably goes south. I wonder how many people techno-utopianism has killed over the years?

    1. Treadingwaterbutstillkicking

      But didn’t you watch The Martian?

      Everything works out in the end…

      I never got into that movie the way other people did. I just couldn’t see the government, any government, doing what they did to retrieve 1 man, unless we were in some MMT future and it was all just one big government jobs project and they planned to leave him behind all along.

      1. Plenue

        I didn’t just watch it, I read the book first. It’s wonderful, a love letter to science and problem solving. And I absolutely can buy NASA going to great effort to save one of its own. And the decision to take the biggest risk is made by the other astronauts rebelling; the suits in the offices decided against it. It was also refreshing how the Chinese weren’t vilified and in fact were key to the rescue.

        Anyway, realistically Watney would have been dead long before he even reached the planet. We shouldn’t be trying to get to Mars. Especially not if scum like Elon Musk get rich off the subsidies in the process.

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