2:00PM Water Cooler 8/8/2016

By Lambert Strether of Corrente.

More to come on our wonderful election… –lambert


“It’s still about two years away, but we’re starting to wonder if either Trump or Hillary Clinton would move to renew trade promotion authority when it’s set to expire in July 2018. Under the TPA law passed last year, the president has to request a three-year renewal, basically to give Congress the opportunity to take it away by passing a resolution of disapproval. But if the White House doesn’t request an extension, it also would lapse. That might not matter for the TPP, since it was signed this year while TPA was in force. But it could make a difference for the proposed Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership, if it’s not signed before July 2018” [Politico]. “Even though both candidates [are said to –lambert] oppose the TPP agreement, it’s hard to imagine them not seeking a renewal in order to preserve a presidential prerogative, said Bill Reinsch, a distinguished fellow at the Stimson Center and former president of the National Foreign Trade Council. Another trade expert agreed.”

“When President Obama looked out across a packed hall at the Democratic National Convention Wednesday night, he could not have missed the large square signs opposing the Trans-Pacific Partnership. They could be seen throughout the sprawling arena. In the Texas delegation and the Oregon delegation, in the Washington delegation and the Wisconsin delegation, delegates waved signs showing the letters “TPP” circled and with a red line slashed through them” [The Nation]. “Mid-way through the president’s well-received address to the convention, delegates in a stand directly opposite the stage unfurled a sign that read: ‘TPP Kills Democracy.'”



“As senator, Clinton promised 200,000 jobs in Upstate New York. Her efforts fell flat” [WaPo].

UPDATE “Clinton, Rubio, Cruz Receive Foreign Policy Advice From Same Consulting Firm” [The Intercept] Well, I’m sure the consulting firm, like any good consulting firm, can suit the honey to the particular bee. So no problem there. Anyhow, it’s bipartisan.

UPDATE “Dr. Jill Stein’s Stiff Dose of Progressive Medicine” [Newsweek]. Strange to see concrete material benefits for working people treated as a “stiff dose” of medicine, but I guess if you’re a neoliberal, that’s how you’d see it.

UPDATE “Trump to announce fully tax-deductible childcare in economic speech” [The Hill]. Tax deductions are useless if you’re too poor to take advantage of them, and in any case, services like this should be free at the point of delivery. I’m sure Trump knows all this. Still, it’s refreshing to be pandered too!

UPDATE “FACT CHECK: Donald Trump Unveils His Economic Plan In Major Detroit Speech” [NPR]. As if. Read at your own risk.


UPDATE “[D]irect evidence has emerged for the first time showing a foreign company has indeed donated money to a federal campaign. Documentation obtained by The Intercept shows a company owned by Chinese nationals donated $1.3 million to Jeb Bush’s super PAC after receiving advice from a prominent Republican lawyer” [Democracy Now!]. It’s a complete debacle. The Democrats are running a candidate who can’t organize a simple arms-running operation, and a Republican candidate didn’t know how to launder their money. Crapification, wherever you look.

The Voters

Here’s Erica Garner, whose account is one of the most fun on Twitter, on the Sanders campaign and black voters:


Yeah, sheesh, even this old WASP codger knows you’ve got to toss something in the collection plate. Now, I think that most campaigns screw up exactly as Garner describes: Staffers exhausted from their parachute ride in don’t have time to learn the territory, and stressed out managers driven to madness by the news cycle don’t have time to do the kind of work that should be done. And so “the dogs bark, but the caravan moves on.” That said, poke around Garner’s TL near these tweets and you’ll see plenty of similar material. I think the Sanders campaign really needed to break new ground here, and failed to do so. Hopefully, the next Sanders — and there will surely be one — is going to take these lessons to heart.

UPDATE I can’t even:


First, the Democrat “stand with” trope is s-o-o-o-o-o shopworn; and it’s always used as clickbait, and never when “standing up” would involve any risk, or make a real difference. Second, really? The campaign is about bad words? Civility? Really?

The Parties

“Making Clinton Real.” A convention report. [Elizabeth Drew, New York Review of Books]. “What, is Elizabeth Drew still alive?” “You’d never know it.”

UPDATE “The political high point of the convention resistance was the Tuesday mass walkout of delegates. While exact numbers are unknown, the clearest evidence (including video and photography of vacated delegation seats) points towards a walkout of likely more than 700 Sanders delegates after the abbreviated conclusion of the roll call vote. The large and well organized Sanders delegations from California and Washington led supermajorities of their delegates outside, leaving a visible void of more than 200 seats between those two states alone” [CounterPunch]. My source, who was present, says more like 400 (and the fact that we don’t have even have a clear count is the best evidence of organizational issues in the walkout). Regardless, 400 or 700, that’s an impressive percentage of the 1900 Sanders delegates. Sadly, power was lying in the street, and nobody quite picked it up. That’s a sadness, but next time.

“Jonathan Chait, for example, recently equated protesters at the Democratic convention with Republican politicians, asserting that the only difference between these two groups of “unhinged extremists” was that the former had been “screaming at the stage” in Philadelphia while the latter had been “screaming from the stage” in Cleveland” [34Justice].

UPDATE “Former CIA agent to launch independent bid for president” [McClatchy]. “Evan McMullin, a former CIA agent and chief policy director for the House Republican conference, announced a bid for president Monday, offering to be ‘a leader who can give millions of disaffected Americans a conservative choice for President.'” Awesome! An open split in one of the legacy parties! And then–

Swing States

UPDATE “The Washington Examiner has selected 13 key counties to watch in eight target states with 114 electoral votes that have been seriously contested in recent elections. Each county has the potential to indicate who will carry these states” [Washington Examiner]. Here they are:

1. Wake County, N.C.
2. Hillsborough County, Fla.
3. Stark County, Ohio
4. Loudoun County, Va.
5 and 6. Boulder and Douglas counties, Colo.
7, 8 and 9. Bucks, Luzerne and Mercer counties, Pa.
10. Hillsborough County, N.H.
11. Cedar County, Iowa
12 and 13. Clark County, Nev., and Maricopa County, Ariz.

Stark County, but no Lannister County? What are the Amish, chopped liver?

Squillionaires and Establishment Republicans for Clinton

UPDATE “Condoleezza Rice, James Baker, George Shultz and Henry Kissinger are among a handful of so-called Republican ‘elders’ with foreign policy and national security experience — people who have held Cabinet-level or otherwise high-ranking positions in past administrations — who have yet to come out for or against Trump” [Politico]. “A person close to Clinton said her team has sent out feelers to the GOP elders.” “Feelers.” Eeewww. That said, since James Baker is on the list, “elder” seems not to be synonomous with “war criminal.” So, integrity!

UPDATE “Richard Armitage, Henry Paulson, Brent Scowcroft. Three big-name former George W. Bush administration officials in the past few weeks have announced that they are supporting Hillary Clinton in 2016” [WaPo]. Yeah, thanks to The God(ess)(e)(s) Of Your Choice, If Any, that we’ve got Hank Paulson on board. I mean, it’s not like he was ever actually indicted or anything.

UPDATE “Former Reagan political director: I’m voting for Clinton” [The Hill]. My goodness. All this Republican squee. Glad they all bought into the Democrat platform!

Stats Watch

Labor Market Conditions Index, July 2016: ” Nonfarm payrolls have risen a more-than-solid 255,000 and 292,000 the last two months but they barely register on the labor market conditions index, which at 1.0 in July and a revised negative 0.1 in June are completely flat” [Econoday]. “Based on the long trend of this [unofficial] index [created by the Fed Research Department], the labor market isn’t that strong at all right now, yet Janet Yellen, back at June’s FOMC press conference, downplayed the weight that this index carries with policy makers.”

Employment Situation (last Friday): “[T]his month, unlike others, the low unemployment rate is not due to more people dropping off of the statistical radar. Instead the labor participation rate ticked up a tenth of a percentage point as more people entered the labor force. Another piece of promise is the number of people who entered the labor force almost equaled those newly employed” [Economic Populist]. ” One month does not a pattern make, especially with BLS statistics, yet seeing less people dropping out of the labor force is a welcome change.” On the other hand: ” So, as previously discussed, I see serious levels of ‘slack’ remaining, while employment growth continues to decelerate ever since oil capex collapsed in q4 2014. And I see no sign yet that the lost oil capex spending that supported growth before it collapsed is being replaced” [Mosler Economics].

Consumer credit: “Less then expected, last month revised down. No sign of the acceleration in credit we need to support growth here. And the mix between revolving and non revolving not encouraging either” [Mosler Economics].

Coops: “How to Give Rural America Broadband? Look to the Early 1900s” [New York Times]. “Now high-speed internet is finally reaching these remote places, but not through the telecom and cable companies that have wired most of urban America. Instead, local power companies are more often the broadband suppliers — and to bring the service, they are borrowing techniques and infrastructure used to electrify the United States nearly a century ago. In some cases, rural municipalities are also using electrification laws from the early 1900s to obtain funds and regulatory permissions reserved for utilities, in order to offer broadband. ‘This is the new New Deal,’ said Sheila Allgood, a manager of Bolt, the broadband subsidiary of the Northeast Oklahoma Electric Cooperative.”

UPDATE Coops: Kenneth Wunderlin, Treasurer of the Board of Directors of FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative: “TPP is a step forward for Wisconsin dairy farmer” [Chippewa Herald (DB)].

Today’s Fear & Greed Index: 83, Extreme Greed (previous close: 85, Extreme Greed) [CNN]. One week ago: 76 (Extreme Greed). (0 is Extreme Fear; 100 is Extreme Greed). Last updated Aug 8 at 1:13pm. Mr. Market is still happy. Will he ever become ecstatic?

Black Injustice Tipping Point

“Historically black church to hold Trump town hall meeting” [Palm Beach Post]. Diversity!

“Today is Day 17 of occupying Freedom Square, a block party protest in opposition to Homan Square, the Chicago Police Department (CPD) ‘black site’ that is internationally infamous for illegal detention and torture. Set up in a lot adjacent to the Homan Square facility in the North Lawndale neighborhood on Chicago’s West Side, the encampment includes an outdoor kitchen, tents to sleep in, a library, play areas, political education and organizing spaces and more” [Truthout]. Hmm. This sounds familiar… But I’m sure there are new twists. Chicago readers?

Dear Old Blighty

UPDATE “Labour leadership: Party to appeal against voting rights ruling” [BBC].

Labour is challenging a High Court ruling giving recent members a vote in its leadership contest, with the appeal hearing expected on Thursday.

The party lost a legal challenge to its rules banning anyone who joined as a member after 12 January from taking part unless they paid an extra £25.

Shadow chancellor John McDonnell had urged Labour not to appeal.

But the party said it would defend the right of its governing NEC “to uphold the rule book”.

The court’s decision, handed down on Monday, could add anywhere between 126,592 and 150,000 people to the list of those eligible to vote in the contest – according to different estimates.

The ruling is thought likely to benefit leader Jeremy Corbyn over challenger Owen Smith, who earlier branded Mr Corbyn “useless” and said he had “fractured” the Labour Party.

Parliamentary Labour reminds me of the DNC, except without the likeability or competence.

UPDATE Today is the fifth anniverary of the 2011 UK riots; contemporary commentary [Verso]. And a handy interactive map.

UPDATE “Fences: A Brexit Diary” [New York Review of Books (DG)]. Chris Arnade territory…

Health Care

“The biggest [ObamaCare rate] increases — all double-digit percentages — came from two nonprofit cooperatives set up under provisions of the ACA intended to promote competition in a young market: Minuteman Health Inc. of Boston and Maine-based Community Health Options” [Valley News]. A “young” market, forsooth. Markets aren’t organic. Ergo, they are not “young.” Same horrid category error as the Bush administration’s “young democracies.”

“Pennsylvania Public Hearing on Rising Health Insurance Rates” [YouTube].


“Ecological Wealth of Nations” [Footprint Network]. Handy maps and charts.


“The very last mammoths were dying for a drink” [WaPo]. “As the massive mammoths crowded around smaller and smaller pools of drinking water, they would have trampled the vegetation at the water’s edge. The loss of greenery would cause the underlying soil to erode, sending sediments cascading into the same lake their lives depended on. Without rain or snowmelt to refill the basins, St. Paul Island would have quickly changed from a remote refuge to a resource-less trap.” Great metaphor… But then the mammoths didn’t have Uber for Water.

Class Warfare

“Growth and fairness aren’t a trade-off” [Larry Summers, WaPo]. “[A]s a graduate student in the late 1970s, I was taught that it was a ‘stylized fact’ that the shares of U.S. total income going to profits and to wages, and to the rich and to the poor, were constant. All of this has changed.” Note the truly hilarious lack of agency in “all this has changed.”

Bill Clinton’s “welfare reform” was based in part on a Riverside Countt, CA program called GAIN (ha) [99 Percent Invisible]. “But within a few years it became clear that the ‘Riverside Miracle’ wasn’t so miraculous after all. In the early 2000s, Joe Hotz, a Duke University economist, returned to Riverside to check on how welfare recipients who had gone through the program were doing. They compared these subjects to those participating in other California programs that had focused on education and training. What they found was that the effects of the ‘Riverside Miracle’ had all but disappeared.” Oopsie.

UPDATE “Poor white Americans’ current crisis shouldn’t have caught the rest of the country as off guard as it has” [The Original Underclass]. “A barely suppressed contempt has characterized much of the commentary about white woe, on both the left and the right.” Nothing “barely” about it; if you want to see real hate, get a liberal talking about workers. Incidentally, the article dances all around the phrase “working class” — “modest means,” “low-income,” “less privileged.” Regardless of the verbal flabiness, however, it’s a good piece on the state of play. One could only wish that “whiteworkingclass” — I’ve gummed the terms together since that’s standard political class usage — could be replaced by “working class,” the people who, regardless of identity politics siloes, rent themselves on a completely crapified labor market.

News of the Wired

“How Teletext and Ceefax are coming back from the dead” [Tech Radar]. Hmm. Will there be cookies? I hope not.

“Abstract and Concrete Categories: The Joy of Cats” [Jiri Adamek, Horst Herrlich, George E. Strecker (PDF)]. I think this is the nerdiest link I’ve ever aggregated. Maybe there’s one person out there who will enjoy it, and can even rip out a useful nugget or two. After all, category errors (“government is like a household”) abound.

“Retrotopia: Unnoticed Resources” [The Archdruid Report]. The next part in the series; Texas and the Confederacy are at war. Over oil.

“Brainstorming Is Dumb” [FastCo].

“What is known?” [Deep Gimble II and K, Curated AI]. “A literary magazine written by machines, for people.”

“You Can Charge Your Phone Using a Plant Now, If That’s a Thing You Want to Do” [New York Magazine]. Puts the “food forest” concept in a whole new light…

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

rugosa to hips

Even though beach roses are said to be “invasive” (dread word) I like them anyhow. They’re old-fashioned, not showy.

Readers, if you want to send me some videos of plants in whole systems (bees and blossoms, for example, or running streams) — I can use them to practice with FFmpeg and hopefully post them. Because of download times, they’ll have to be measured in seconds, rather than minutes. Thank you! Adding, I got another one today! Please keep sending them; they will ultimately appear!

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Readers, if you enjoyed what you read today, please use the dropdown to choose your contribution, and then click the hat! Your tip will be welcome today, and indeed any day. Water Cooler will not exist without your random acts of kindness.


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About Lambert Strether

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


  1. unrequited narcissist

    I thought there was a redundancy in the WC synopsis, Lambert, but then I realized that apparently I was the only one who thought Larry Summers was a thirsty mammoth.

    1. fresno dan

      unrequited narcissist
      August 8, 2016 at 2:10 pm

      Please, please, PLEASE!!!! Let us not besmirch the good reputations and good character of thirsty mammoths with Larry Summers….

  2. Pat

    Regarding welfare reform, similar to education ‘reform’, it is almost like the people who have promoted and passed them went looking for ‘successes’ with little or no interest in the actual results in order to achieve a desired position. In these cases destruction of a somewhat workable safety net and unionized public schools.

    Oh, I’m sure I’m being too simplistic, but not by much.

    1. pretzelattack

      seems reasonable to me. i also thought of all the educational “reforms”.

      on another point, jonathan chait is clearly wrong, all the sanders delegates were obviously putin plants. i wonder how he feels about the republicans that have endorsed clinton?

    2. Adam Eran

      Welfare “reform” changed AFDC to TANF, a block grant to states that gives them an incentive to stiff the poor…and sure enough, it works as designed. Before the “end of welfare” 76% of those eligible received aid. After (with TANF), only 26%.

      Add that to the surge in incarceration thanks to Clinton’s police / sentencing policies and you’ve got to admire, even be astonished at, a party that relies on the ignorance of the lower orders to succeed.

  3. fresno dan

    UPDATE “Condoleezza Rice, James Baker, George Shultz and Henry Kissinger are among a handful of so-called Republican ‘elders’ with foreign policy and national security experience — people who have held Cabinet-level or otherwise high-ranking positions in past administrations — who have yet to come out for or against Trump” [Politico]. “A person close to Clinton said her team has sent out feelers to the GOP elders.” “Feelers.” Eeewww. That said, since James Baker is on the list, “elder” seems not to be synonomous with “war criminal.” So, integrity!

    Sooooo….when Hillary gets endorsements from repubs who supported Nixon, Reagan, THE Bushes, will cognitive dissonance cause head (BOTH dem and repub) explosions ???? – watch out for skull shrapnel!!!

    AND as a bonus: Sharp ass rhetorical question:
    How many dems will UN endorse Hillary because she is now more of a repub than Trump is???

    1. jgordon

      This story made me so happy. I am hoping and praying that Kissinger and Rice et al come out in vociferous support if Hillary, and I’m thrilled that Hillary had the foresight to send out feelers to them. Yet another example of her good judgement and due care.

      By the way, I just saw on Zerohedge a video of Hillary having a seizure and a picture of her aides hauling her up an (admittedly steep and treacherous) set of stairs. Any takers on how long before these images make their way into political ads?

    2. fresno dan

      UPDATE “Richard Armitage, Henry Paulson, Brent Scowcroft. Three big-name former George W. Bush administration officials in the past few weeks have announced that they are supporting Hillary Clinton in 2016” [WaPo]. Yeah, thanks to The God(ess)(e)(s) Of Your Choice, If Any, that we’ve got Hank Paulson on board. I mean, it’s not like he was ever actually indicted or anything.

      Yeah, but aren’t they the weeniest of the neocons???
      I sometimes get the impression that Scowcroft would actually favor not having a nuclear war….

      Well, if this doesn’t prove that there are profound, PROFOUND differences between the parties, I don’t know what does….

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        The price for saying it was a mistake to go to Iraq.

        Will Donald take it like a brave person?

      2. different clue

        Scowcroft is one of the legacy realists. NOT a neo-con. He worked for/ with ELder Bush.

    3. Jim Haygood

      Zero, most likely.

      There is only one War Party: “Politics ends at the water’s edge.”

      Onward to the shores of Tripoli, as the Marines’ Hymn urges.

      1. JTMcPhee

        JH, let us not just go for partial credit — here’s the whole “Marine Hymn,” which bears some clse reading:

        From the Halls of Montezuma
        To the shores of Tripoli
        We fight our country’s battles
        In the air, on land, and sea;
        First to fight for right and freedom

        And to keep our honor clean;
        We are proud to claim the title
        Of United States Marine.

        Our flag’s unfurled to every breeze
        From dawn to setting sun;
        We have fought in every clime and place
        Where we could take a gun.

        In the snow of far-off Northern lands
        And in sunny tropic scenes;
        You will find us always on the job —
        The United States Marines.

        Here’s health to you and to our Corps
        Which we are proud to serve;
        In many a strife we’ve fought for life
        And never lost our nerve.
        If the Army and the Navy
        Ever look on Heaven’s scenes,
        They will find the streets are guarded
        By United States Marines.

        From the USA FLAG SITE, http://www.usa-flag-site.org/song-lyrics/the-marines-hymn/, where you can sign up for email alerts of “flag at half-staff days” which given the further cheapening of our great patriotic heritage, is almost every day of the year, sometimes with multiple directions to the Patriotic Hordes to cover multiple deaths and other reasons to “honor by half-staffing…”

        And for the TRUE PATRIOTS THAT REALLY LOVE THEIR FLAG, there’s this resource:


        I got a question, well a compound question: When Dickless Cheney and Madeline Albright ant those folks die, will they (1) get a State Funeral, and (2) be honoried by a day or week of half-staffing?

    4. fosforos

      Am I wrong to think that. merely because during the whoIe campaign I have seen not a single reference to him anywhere in the media or online, that the man elected president as a Democrat in the year 2000 CE has refused to endorse the Clinton?

      1. fresno dan

        August 8, 2016 at 2:58 pm

        I too had read about Gore being reticent about endorsing. Turns out he did – WHO KNEW???

        Al Gore:
        “I am not able to attend this year’s Democratic convention, but I will be voting for Hillary Clinton,” Gore wrote in the first of a series of three TWEETS laying out his rationale for supporting the former secretary of state. “Given her qualifications and experience — and given the significant challenges facing our nation and the world, including, especially, the global climate crisis, I encourage everyone else to do the same.”


        Hmmmm – tweets? Isn’t that kinda like sending tweet congratulations to your best friend at his weddings – kinda of tacky and not showing much enthusiasm??? ‘I would just love to attend your wedding, but I must wash my hair and organize my sock drawer….’

        1. Vatch

          Oh, you were referring to Gore. Duh. Bush wasn’t elected; he was selected by 5 members of the Supreme Court. Never mind.

      2. Arizona Slim

        When Al Gore was being considered for the VP slot, Al and Tipper were, shall we say, less than thrilled. Why? Because they simply didn’t trust the Clintons.

      1. RMO

        “will cognitive dissonance cause head (BOTH dem and repub) explosions ????”

        Nope – the rationalization will be thus: “See? Trump is so bad that even dyed in the wool Republicans such as X,Y and Z are endorsing Clinton!”

    5. Jim Haygood

      From a shocked War Party journo at the Saddam’s WMDs paper (which endorsed Hillary on Jan. 31st):

      No living journalist has ever seen a major party nominee put financial conditions on the United States defense of NATO allies, openly fight with the family of a fallen American soldier, or entice Russia to meddle in a United States presidential election by hacking his opponent.

      “If you have a nominee who expresses warmth toward one of our most mischievous and menacing adversaries, a nominee who shatters all the norms about how our leaders treat families whose sons died for our country, a nominee proposing to rethink the alliances that have guided our foreign policy for 60 years, that demands coverage — copious coverage and aggressive coverage,” said Carolyn Ryan, The New York Times’s senior editor for politics.


      Translation: we’re gonna keep on aggressively biasing, twisting and lying for the Warmongress till she and we crash and burn.

      The MSM is the enemy.

      1. grizziz

        Today’s useful dichotomy: Trump presidency -> civil war; Clinton presidency -> world war.

      2. Carolinian

        “true to the facts”….. hmmm.

        Alternate story: a president erratically decides to invade a country that hasn’t attacked the United States using flimsy and easily disproven pretexts. How should the NYT respond?

        Why by providing additional bogus pretexts of course!

        Shorter NYT: challenging politician statements is our job….except when it isn’t.

        1. gonzomarx

          this makes me think of Brexit. We were offered a lovely list of bastards to vote against..

      3. fresno dan

        Jim Haygood
        August 8, 2016 at 3:14 pm

        The most important thing with these people is to speak in “Washington dialect” – cliched speech filled with O so serious mumbo jumbo about how war is peace, failure is success, lying is truth, and no actual weapons of mass destruction renders the believers of such the experienced, knowledgeable, SOBER people to lead this country….

    6. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Here is your chance to say NO!!! to Nixon, Reagan, The Bushes, AND Clinton and Obama.

      How often are you going to see all the bright planets in alignment like that in one easy-to-vote-against candidate?

      1. gonzomarx

        this makes me think of Brexit. We were offered a lovely list of bastards to vote against…

      2. Jim Haygood

        Not to mention the unelected fourth estate.

        How about a crippling media tax to finance their wars?

    7. Waldenpond

      Twitter pointed out that, in one week, Clinton had:

      Michael Tracey ‏@mtracey 6h6 hours ago

      In just the past few days, HRC:
      1) explicitly embraced Bush-era neocons
      2) propagated base neo-McCarthyite smears
      3) courted Henry Kissinger
      397 retweets 427 likes

      Michael Tracey ‏@mtracey 6h6 hours ago

      4) Signaled eagerness to intensify war in Syria
      5) Vowed to escalate hostilities with Russia
      6) Touted various degenerate billionaires
      190 retweets 210 likes

      The Rs are imploding, but Clinton running far right means the Ds are stronger than ever!

  4. fresno dan

    “Growth and fairness aren’t a trade-off” [Larry Summers, WaPo]. “[A]s a graduate student in the late 1970s, I was taught that it was a ‘stylized fact’ that the shares of U.S. total income going to profits and to wages, and to the rich and to the poor, were constant. All of this has changed.” Note the truly hilarious lack of agency in “all this has changed.”

    “What is unfortunate is that many, in their eagerness to focus on fairness, neglect the single most important determinant of almost every aspect of economic performance — the rate of growth of total income, as reflected in the gross domestic product. Because those emphasizing strategies that center on business tax-cutting and deregulation, and that favor the wealthy, have placed the most emphasis on growth over the past 35 years, the objective of increasing growth has been discredited in the minds of too many progressives.”

    The fact of the matter is, that over the last 16 years, all years save two had “growth” – what is not in dispute is that the vast majority of income from this growth went to the 1% ***. Under the policy regime we now live under (and increasing have for 40 years), there is not good reason to believe that increasing growth will magically undo all the policies of the last 40 years in weakening labor and strengthening capital.

    I no longer believe in trickle down Mr. Summers.


    1. grizziz

      Growth seems to be one of those dead metaphors ripped from biology and abused by political economists. In biology simple growth is generally limited by available food. With GDP it is merely counting (actually surveying) the dollar amount of transactions in a certain period and adding them together. Adding more transactions will make GDP larger, but will not necessarily increase individual satisfaction one iota. An exception being Mr.Summers who likely prefers GDP growth figures over his own children.

    2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Bigger is better.

      “Please super-size my soft drink.”

      Taller is also better.

      “I inherited my long, skinny leg genes from my mother. I think it’s worth millions. Luckily, it was an un-taxed inheritance.”

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        In fact, we don’t hate them like we hate those who receive, say, $500,000 from their parents.

        Instead, we say to those with tall legs, ‘You are so sexy. I want to tip you lots of money for the dance.”

        Others (in the 7th grade, before they emotionally grow up): “I am so jealous.”

          1. MyLessThanPrimeBee

            Until we appreciate spirals as much as straight lines.

            Crookedness as well.

            All is beautiful in Nature…including obtuse and acute angles.

  5. allan

    Police in Rochester, NY, deploy an LRAD (Long-Range Acoustic Device) sound weapon to break up an unruly crowd that hung around after the Puerto Rican Festival ended. Oh for the good old days when military-grade equipment was supplied to local law enforcement for only the most extreme contingencies.

      1. fresno dan

        August 8, 2016 at 5:48 pm

        Madeleine Albright
        “What’s the point of having this superb military you’re always talking about if we can’t use it?”

        Its wasteful.
        Use it or lose it.
        I think these people were over indoctrinated when they were children to clean their plates too much

        1. JTMcPhee

          Yah, I was riffing on Albright’s horrific lapsus lingua… The thing is, it is pretty clear that “the military” is hardly “superb.” Can’t win any wars, actually don’t at the Battlespace Manager level even really want to try.

      2. ambrit

        Dread Lord Cthulhu promises in his campaign platform to use Americas “greatest military in the world” to make all those other countries bow down and send tribute. I hear his campaign is pissed off that H Clintons’ campaign stole that plank and call it their own now. Clinton is pivoting towards being the Greater Evil. Pray for gridlock.

  6. Unorthodoxmarxist

    The filing deadlines for independent presidential candidates in most states have passed or would prove to be very difficult even for a well-funded campaign effort just getting off the ground. The full list of deadlines for states and signatures required is here – but keep in mind you often need 1.5-2 times the number of listed signatures in order to ensure no one challenges your petitions: https://ballotpedia.org/Filing_deadlines_and_signature_requirements_for_independent_presidential_candidates,_2016

    By my count McMullin could, theoretically, get on up to 20 state ballots whose deadlines have not yet passed. This is improbable unless he has petition gatherers collecting before his official announcement, and nobody noticed at all. These include

    Alabama 5,000 signatures 8/18/2016
    Alaska 3,005 8/10/2016
    Arizona 36,000 9/9/2016
    California 178,039 8/12/2016
    Colorado 5,000 8/10/2016
    Connecticut 7,500 8/10/2016
    Hawaii 4,372 8/10/2016
    Idaho 1,000 8/24/2016
    Iowa 1,500 8/19/2016
    Kentucky 5,000 9/9/2016
    Louisiana 5,000 8/19/2016
    Minnesota 2,000 8/23/2016

    Montana 5,000 8/17/2016
    New Hampshire 3,000 8/10/2016
    New York 15,000 8/23/2016
    North Dakota 4,000 9/5/2016
    Ohio 5,000 8/10/2016
    Oregon 17,893 8/30/2016
    Rhode Island 1,000 9/9/2016
    Tennessee 275 8/18/2016
    Utah 1,000 1,000 8/15/2016
    Virginia 5,000 8/26/2016

    Washington, D.C. 4,600 8/10/2016
    Wyoming 3,302 8/30/2016

    I’ve bolded the 14 states which he really has a feasible chance – assuming tons of money to hire petitioners and a campaign ready to direct them in each state. I’ve managed successful statewide petition drives for independent presidential candidates in NY State and it is not easy to do. Incidentally, although NY’s deadline is 8/23 I don’t believe 2 weeks is a feasible amount of time for 15k signatures unless they’ve been collecting already or are hiring hundreds of petitioners (I suppose possible if it’s Koch money or something similar). California is out. The states where he’d be on the ballot are eclectic at best.

    In the back of my mind this is probably going to hurt the Libertarian Party and Gary Johnson more than Trump. Arizona, Ohio and Virginia are the only swing-ish states where it’s possible he could get on the ballot and matter to Trump.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      Great data. Thanks! And adding that none of them are battleground states, except maybe AZ.

      So whatever the point is, it’s not affecting the election outcome…

      1. JohnnyGL

        It’s really crazy, who’d have thought that we’d have FOUR republican candidates for President.

        1) The one who collects donations from GW Bush donors and gets endorsed by his former staff.

        2) The one that won primaries and was nominated at the party convention.

        3) The Libertarian candidate who actually was a Republican and did nothing to decriminalize drugs.

        4) The new guy.

    2. fresno dan

      August 8, 2016 at 2:52 pm

      Wouldn’t this guy just siphon off votes from David French, thereby electing Hillary?

    1. ex-PFC Chuck

      I’m in the midst of one of the most fascinating reads I’ve encountered in recent years: Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, by Yuval Noah Harari. Among other things he asserts, only partially tongue-in-cheek, that Homo sapiens did not domesticate wheat. Wheat domesticated Homo sapiens. That is, when looked at from the perspective of Richard Dawkins’ notion of the selfish gene.

  7. Synoia

    How Teletext and Ceefax are coming back from the dead” [Tech Radar]. Hmm. Will there be cookies? I hope not.

    They already rose from the dead. It’s called twitter. Twitter users are called twits.

  8. Synoia

    As senator, Clinton promised 200,000 jobs in Upstate New York. Her efforts fell flat.

    Not enough mansions built in the Catskills. Or the promise, like Clinton, had a stroke.

    1. Pat

      Or like so many other things she found she had more important things to do. Such as line up campaign donors for the next campaign, and they had little things she just had to get on…

      Or it was campaign bull from day one, but you can’t hold someone to things like that.

  9. Scylla

    Re: Stand with Hillary against Trump’s divisive language

    Yeah, this fits with my experience on liberal blogs- Tone policing. Anyone openly displaying anger or frustration is irrational (make that disrespectful of their betters) and has no right to make an argument, so of course they would attack language and ignore content – and yes there is bad content there, but such details are tiring to address, amirite?

    They really do not get it, do they?

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      “How dare you.”

      “How dare you!”

      “How DARE you.”

      “HOW dare you.”

      “HOW DARE you.”

      “HOW DARE YOU.”

      “HOW DARE YOU!!!”

      As those two moralists battle for eternity.

    2. hunkerdown

      No, they really do get it. It is an error to accept the conceit that liberals — those who accept the tenets of John Stuart Mill’s later theologizing — argue (invent) rather than rationalize (innovate). They’re superior, and any argument from inferiors contrary to the (asserted to be) settled position is nonsensical by definition (i.e. power).

    3. DJG

      Scylla: I tend to refer to it as offendedocity. It is a particularly popular rhetorical stance among white people, who seem to think that being offended on their part matters to the rest of us. But offendedocity used to be known as sniveling.

      See also: Civility. (Which almost always means hierarchy.)

    4. polecat

      I’m In !’

      …. i think someone forgot the 4 additional letters before that exclamation mark……

      which would make more sense…

  10. RabidGandhi

    Totally related to nothing, but the breaking news here is that our fig tree has hit bud burst in the first week of August (≈ 1st week of Feb. up north). I.e., about 4 weeks ahead of “average”. The big change this year was the tree is in an opening in the back of our patio, and 6 months ago we made its base into a vegetal compost heap.

    So not sure if it’s that, or climate change or an anomaly, but either way when we organise the NC Southern Cone get together, I’ll bring the figs.

    1. abynormal

      i love figs…grew up on my great grandmothers fig jam & pies. haven’t enjoyed a fresh homegrown fig in decades and decades…sad.
      how’s your rainfall? i’m about 30 or so miles n. of atl. and we’re looking at the next 15 days of rain. the heat index has been high but altogether only about 2wks of this summer. for the last month birch and oak leaves falling…unnatural to say the least.
      oh and my friends pear & peach trees are producing half the size compared to the last few years. an NC meet up would make for a great road trip…guess i’ll could bring homemade blankets, hats n scarfs cause our eats will be rotted after the rain they’re predicting.

      come ta thunk on it…i don’t member a southern meetup. Com’on guys…not all of us bite :o))

      1. Martin Finnucane

        30 or so miles n. of atl. and we’re looking at the next 15 days of rain. the heat index has been high but altogether only about 2wks of this summer.

        Only 2 weeks of summer? Or am I misunderstanding something? And I take it that “n. of atl.” means “north of Atlanta [Georgia]”? I ask because I’m about 100 miles south of Atlanta, and it has been an exceptionally hot summer starting early June, and until recently dry to boot. My garden almost wilted and died, and some summer seedlings did just that.

        Before you say anything, I grew up here, so yes, I’m used to the heat. And humidity. Life is different south of the fall line.

        1. abynormal

          i know where you are…its hotter than hell. i’ve kept an eye on you bc we were told we’d get rain showers that actually sprouted down south. i remember heat indices over 100…we (semi north GA) haven’t seen that this summer but it could still happen. 2008/09 blasted 115…remember THAT. my eyes melted but we got rain too. if we don’t get this rain the fall will be brown…dark brown. i’m a native too…piedmonts aren’t normal ‘)

          “been.” R.W./Native Son

    2. Oregoncharles

      Just finished drying most of our crop. Still small, despite the immoderate number of trees (bushes, actually), because a couple of years ago we had a freeze down to 0F, or lower, that took them back to the ground.

      I do love them, am quite capable of making myself a little sick on them, and am thrilled that they do well here – most years. Like to let them get really ripe, to the brownish-bag-of-syrup stage. The uglier they are, the better they taste.

      Main problem is the birds like them too, and leave sad little rags hanging on the tree. I cook those and make filling with them.

      Opposite season, of course, at close to 45 degrees latitude.

  11. clinical wasteman

    Arbitrary 5/10/100-year anniversaries mostly strike me as spurious, but 2011-2016 matters because nothing about 2011 (or 1981) has gone away, and especially because of the BLM action breaking out all over the UK right now. This movement has an excellent MSM infiltrator in Wail Qasim (Vice UK / Guardian) and is neither racially exclusive / class unconscious nor ‘led’ without invitation by white leftist microparties. (See also two groups of longer standing: London Black Revs and Movement for Justice. Apologies for lack of links. Wail’s articles are easily found but much of the rest requires ‘social’ media, which I don’t have, or personal word-of-mouth, which is hard to pass on here.)
    Anyway, thanks Lambert for including this. And I hope it’s ok to post the following link to what I wrote from Brixton at the time, which would have been sent here too if only my life had already been improved by reading NC every day back then:

  12. Pat

    You all will be happy to know that Hillary is shocked, shocked I tell you that Trump was able to raise so much money in July. Okay, the DNC hack who wrote the letter with her name on it, said ‘surprised’. And they point out that this is really troublesome because that would mean that they could spend as much as the Clinton campaign has been doing with so little result (once again my paraphase). I mean if they spent as much and possibly had effective ads…OMG. So you know it is only August and polls can be wrong, don’t believe them. Send her money, money, money. (Is it too much to point out that outside of her several appalling SuperPacs, she has probably maxxed out the big donors already.)

    I know I should just unsubscribe from their emails but sometimes they do make me laugh.

    At least until I realize there are a goodly number of idiots who will waste their funds on someone who is unlikely to ever represent them.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Don’t unsubscribe.

      It’s not often, unless you’re hitch hiker in the galaxy, for anyone to witness the end of the neoliberal universe.

      1. JerseyJeffersonian

        I still subscribe to MoveOn emails for the Schadenfreude value.

        And they never disappoint. Once again, they seamlessly pivot from being BernieBros to squalling about how we MUST vote for Hillary, otherwise the short-fingered vulgarian might_just_win! And the whole-hearted swallowing of the “Trump is a Roosian Agent” lines, and the pearl-clutching over Trump’s reaction to Khizr Khan (Saudi lobbyist) and the horrifying disrespect shown to Murica’s War-fighters. Geez, maybe if you stop voting for people who vote for disastrous wars, this concern might go away. Ya think?


  13. low integer

    I can smell the fear and panic increasing among the CIA cohort and their numerous spivs and lackeys. Their new candidate is hilarious! The way I see it is this: they know they cannot level with Trump about the global scale fuckery that they are at the center of, as he is not an insider and is also the sort of guy who just might decide to get on Twitter and tell the world about it. I’m also pretty sure an accurate poll of the US would show Trump in a much, much better position than the media is letting on, and these pricks know it. For all Trump’s issues, I don’t think he would be too impressed with the kind of subhuman behaviour that these groups consider standard operating procedure.

    Another small piece of the puzzle: there is an Australian ex-politician named Bob Carr who, over the last 24 hours, has been out in the media doing the full blown anti-Trump scaremongering thing, and I’m pretty confident he is some kind of CIA insider. There have been rumors floating around for ages.

    1. inode_buddha

      The thought had crossed my mind a month ago, but I dismissed it as too tin-foil. Now, I hope and pray trump or stein gets in for just the reasons stated. Blow it wide open and walk away. It would do wonders to heal both the US and the world.

    2. Jim Haygood

      One can appreciate the exquisite bind in which the spook agencies find themselves. On the one hand, there’s the motormouth Trump, who’s so erratic he might do anything.

      On the other hand there’s the Hildabeest, a creature so egotistical, corrupt and self-serving that she posted all kinds of classified info on her amateurish homebrew server, possibly getting an Iranian CIA informant hung last weekend.

      What’s an honest spook to do? (Oops, limited intersection in that Venn diagram, ain’t it — Snowden, Binney, and a handful more.)

      1. low integer

        I’ve got a lot of respect for Binney, and I learnt a very good lesson from studying his career. The technical side of his work is amazing, and it is also clear he no longer gives a shit about his own wellbeing. Props! It is ironic that the number one threat to his safety is the people he used to work for.
        I don’t know too much about what Snowden actually did at Booz Allen, some sort of data security analyst I think, but I greatly respect that he had the balls to take matters into his own hands.

        But yeah, it is definitely funny watching the spooks panic. Hahaha.

  14. grizziz

    Consumer credit(Mosler); What is missed here is that while consumer borrowing is down this period and unchanged in 3 years, the amount of debt to income has risen 2%. Not good. from Econoday,

    A rising ratio indicates that consumers are taking on greater debt burdens with respect to income growth.

  15. abynormal

    childcare expense is really hard on the poor…many single mothers are poor. this isn’t discussed enough. your right Lambert, Trump has to know the majority of them won’t benefit from his tax yak…makes it a really hard slap in the face!

    move over 1 in 4 children in poverty 2012-15…your beds a shrink’n

    1. Corey

      Any expense is “hard on the poor”. Why exactly are the “poor” having children if they cannot afford them? Here’s a thought: don’t start shitting out kids until you are in a long-term stable relationship and you can afford to care for them properly. Then your “single mothers” won’t have to worry about childcare expenses. This isn’t hard, folks. Education, family, hard work. The rest will fall neatly into place.

      1. John k

        You’re right. But it’s not the kids fault, and helping them helps ourselves.
        Beyond that, free birth control is the best investment society can make.

      2. abynormal

        so we’ll only allow the rich to reproduce…what to do about the kiddies, born of shitting mothers, running around today?
        real folksie Corey…yawwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwn

      3. laura

        Because sex is an almost undeniable urge. Because it feels good.
        Because people like to fuck.
        Because people enjoy the physical contact.
        Because it does not require a purchase.
        Because some are coerced, or do not have power in a relationship and lack the ability to determine the conditions in which the sex occurs.
        Because our Congress and our culture denies women agency in their bodies.
        Because contraception may be difficult to obtain.
        Because contraception can and does fail.
        Because, “come on baby, just this one time, please baby, please.
        How about taking your “shitting out babies” and shoving it up your entitled and arrogant ass Corey.

          1. clinical wasteman

            … and using it at every opportunity until the misogyno-malthusians crawl back up their own flabby intestines.

      4. Pat

        Others have pointed your offensive arrogance, but let me point out something else. You are making a lot of assumptions about single mothers and about the poor. A lot of people have ‘slipped’ into poverty in the last decade. They didn’t start out there. They didn’t plan to have their jobs disappear. They didn’t plan to go to school and have companies lie about not having American workers so they can import lower priced workers. And a lot of those mothers didn’t plan on their partners disappearing, deserting them, or being killed or dying because well cancer and such don’t discriminate and only attack those who have money. And it isn’t just single parents who have to worry about childcare expenses. If both parents are working but only have low paying jobs, it is still an issue. And just for the record a lot of those low paying are dead hard and they may work much harder than you. But you just consider look down on them for not being successful.

        So what do you do if you lose your job, lose your livelihood and still have children you had when you were in a good job and a steady relationship? What happens if your stable relationship disappears because some drunk driver doesn’t get a taxi? Do you ding them for having kids before that?

        I’m not saying it is everyone, but seriously take a look at the figures of the increase of children living in poverty in the last decade and get it through your head that a whole lot of parents, single or not, are working really hard and still slipping behind. Probably harder than you work. Poverty is just one misstep away from almost every American – no matter how hard working or determined. But you won’t figure that out until reality hits you over the head and you discover that your education isn’t wanted, your work isn’t appreciate or paid for properly and your family is not immune to death, disease and craziness. No, it doesn’t always fall into place, no matter how much American buy that myth.

        1. abynormal

          your correct Pat and i didn’t mean to single out single mothers…altho they don’t have the partnership near when they find they can’t breathe, their stomach clenches and the nearest bridge isn’t high enough.

          one of my neighbors, married with one child and educated in the medical fields, are only finding parttime work. they still have to have fulltime daycare because their hours vary so much. their car broke down last week and i caught the woman crying at the mailbox. she was ashamed as she unloaded because she knows others have it much worse and women have been doing it forever. i explained it’s never been easy for any mother but what did that matter…i made a few calls and got her car repaired. i’m stretched so i can’t help with the child but told her i’d help her find someone she could trust. (i hope) oh and btw…the couple is in their mid 30’s.

          i posted last week about my kid telling me kids in her school were crying because their parents had put the McMansion in the kids names. Your Spot On with Poverty is just one misstep away from almost every American!

      5. low integer

        Thanks to all who put Corey in his place. I saw his ignorant comment and thought about letting him have it, but decided to wait and see if any responses were forthcoming. I love the NC crew! Good people.

  16. optimader

    File under: Sightings; Bumper Sticker
    I’ll Believe Corporations Are People When Texas Executes One

  17. allan

    The Cowliphate are different from you and me:

    A federal judge said in court papers that he has allowed six of the defendants accused in the armed occupation of an Oregon wildlife refuge earlier this year to meet with their attorneys — and sometimes with each other — at a special courthouse location after they complained about their ability to prepare for trial from a county jail.

    The defendants are being housed at the Multnomah County Detention Center, and U.S. District Judge Robert E. Jones said in the declaration filed late Thursday he at first kept the meetings “off the record” because jail staff was concerned other inmates would request similar treatment.

    After all, it’s not as if they’re criminals or terrorists or something.

    1. Oregoncharles

      Technically, they’re political prisoners (they led an armed uprising/occupation), and if their politics made any sense, we’d be agreeing they should get special meeting quarters. I assume that EVERYTHING in the jail is monitored; of course, the courthouse room will be, too.

    2. LifelongLib

      Well, everybody in jail should be able to meet with their attorneys to prepare for trial. But allowing them to meet with each other seems odd…

  18. Skyburn

    “You Can Charge Your Phone Using a Plant Now, If That’s a Thing You Want to Do”

    Actually you can’t, because the Indegogo campaign was cancelled and backer’s money refunded. Probably because it’s a scam.


    These “green tech” articles are my pet peeve. They just regurgitate a company’s press release without even attempting to check the facts. The Archimedes turbine is the perennial offender here.

  19. Lambert Strether Post author

    50 G.O.P. Officials Warn Donald Trump Would Put Nation’s Security ‘at Risk’ NYT

    “Fifty of the nation’s most senior Republican national security officials, many of them former top aides or cabinet members for President George W. Bush … [warn that Trump] … would be the most reckless president in American history.”

    More reckless, apparently, than these same guys who instigated, fought, and lost the Iraq war. So, trust the experts.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Is it true that upon hearing a statement on the 101st occasion, every single test subject comes to believe the validity of that statement?

      Or is it the 51st occasion?

      That’s one powerful scientific discovery.

    2. HotFlash

      More reckless than the lady who had a private server for State Dept business and didn’t seem to understand what ‘classified information’ is?

    3. Alex morfesis

      Wreck less ?? Isn’t that a good thing to be ? The more these republicratz exclaim their indignations, sadly, the more me thinkz to actually vote for captain trainwreck and help make america white again…

      clothespin optional…

      Doubt every1 gets the same ads, but my eyeballs are being hit with herr trumpf with the leni riefenstahl Nuremburg right hand with pointing finger, roman “nero/claudius” style salute…

      no double entendre intended…???

      Maybe I can make a few bux selling clothespins at polling place entrances on “selection” day

    4. Carolinian

      In case we weren’t convinced by Rutenberg’s bizarre and quite lengthy Times defense that Haygood linked above.

    5. DJG

      Lambert: What I’m wondering at is what they have to complain about. The economic speech and proposals are the usual Republican tropisms–all the tax and economic ideas that haven’t worked the last 40 or more years. Elimination of the estate tax (because Republicans can somehow take it with them). Some sort of flat tax–three brackets (of what?). Lower and lower and lower corporate taxes.

      So now that the Republican elite is having its tantrum, the Donald lets himself be caged. I give him a month or so and he’ll be singing the praises of NAFTA.

      Pretty soon he’ll start sounding like a louder version of the very deep and deeply talented Paul Ryan.


      1. Carolinian

        Someone pointed out that Trump’s ideas are the same as a libertarian party from a few years ago…i.e. lower taxes and regulations along with less govt intervention overseas. His former campaign manager was a Koch guy and the Kochs are libertarians.

        So it’s probably not the same as the Bush form of republicanism which is into pushing the hegemon and globalism. But he’s also not likely to be much of a liberal although some of us thought he might tack in that direction to get elected.

        Choose your poison although the Hillary poison may be a lot worse. Given her health problems and his lack of aptitude you wonder why either of these people is running.

    6. optimader

      many of them former top aides or cabinet members for President George W. Bush
      Failed Policy advisors now offering their expertise as the equivalent of a policy Precrime Unit !

    7. MojaveWolf

      But … it’s not JUST a mere war based on false pretenses that destablizes the middle east and the whole world we’re talking about, getting possibly over a million people killed as a result. I understand your anger, but we must be rational. These men have experience and are wise, despite lying us into said war, and their warnings make sense. Trump is an unknown quantity who could do something horrible. Consider the ramifications.

      For example, if we elect Trump, he might ignore all warnings and let people hijack jets and fly them into buildings! Or let an entire AMERICAN city DROWN because he ignored important scientific warnings!

      He’s anti-science, you know, unlike the responsible adults in the room. So he will endorse fracking and offshore drilling and environmental devastation.

      And as you yourself pointed out in the post above, he uses divisive language. Semantics and propriety are IMPORTANT, and he has no respect for either.

      These guys make sense. Consider what might happen if they are out of power, and he is in, and how much worse it could be.

  20. Alex morfesis

    wreck less ???

    isn’t being someone who wrecks “less” a good thing ??

    If these republicratz keep talking out loud…

    make america white again may get my vote…(clothespin optional)

    Maybe I can make a few bux selling clothespins at my local polling place on election day….

  21. fresno dan


    While “low energy” Jeb Bush many not be on Donald Trump’s side, his son, George P. Bush, is pledging to support the Republican presidential nominee in November.

    “From Team Bush, it’s a bitter pill to swallow, but you know what? You get back up and you help the man that won, and you make sure that we stop Hillary Clinton,” George P. Bush, the Texas land commissioner, told GOP activists Saturday
    It’s a very surprising decision, particularly in light of the father, the uncle and the grandfather making it abundantly clear they are not going to endorse Donald Trump for November,” Tom Pauken, former GOP Texas chair and a Trump delegate, told the Austin-American Statesman when Bush was nominated.

    According to GOP strategist Matt Mackowiak, who tweeted about the endorsement, George P. Bush’s decision to back Trump is only because he is leading the victory effort in Texas and has a political future to worry about. Talking Points Memo editor Josh Marshall seemed to agree with that assessment.

    I should cut the Bushes some slack….but I won’t
    OH, OH, OH!!!! I just found this thing for making Simpsons gifs:

    1. fresno dan

      I thought that was suppose to be the republican convention because an elephant is walking by, but it says on a grand stand “democrat” – – the republicans invaded a dem convention with an elephant?

  22. OIFVet

    http://www.vogue.com/13464539/obama-marthas-vineyard-vacation-style/The First Family Proves That Vacation Style Can Be Seriously Elegant, Too

    The Obamas have never shied away from making a statement with their clothing—or showcasing the best in American design talent—but given that the Martha’s Vineyard trip is a sabbatical, feeling good likely took precedence over creating a fashion moment. The fact that they managed to do both is a testament to their style and proof that even the most informal moments can still register as chic—something to remember the next time you’re tempted to reach for the Crocs.

    From the Style over substance department…

    1. Carolinian

      Hey Garrison Keillor says Obama is like the coolest president ever. Nothing shallow there.

  23. cwaltz

    Loundon County, Va

    During the primary 51,000 Republicans cast votes. Trump took 14,000 of them
    During the primary 36,000 Democrats cast votes 21,000 of them for Clinton.

    It’s America’s “richest county” with a median income of $100,000 dollars.

    Yeah totally representative of the country, media! LOL

    I guess they handpicked the in the bag counties for everyone to watch. How democratic!

  24. Praedor

    I tune out as soon as any candidate for office starts talking “tax deductions”. Deductions are CRAP. Eliminate all deductions and turn the truly useful deductions into CREDITS. A tax CREDIT is felt by all. A deduction is too little, too late.

  25. Michael G

    “Parliamentary Labour reminds me of the DNC, except without the likeability or competence.”
    As a newish Labour party member (pre 2016), can I thank you for putting it so well.
    I fear I must be becoming “stupid and malicious” and “an infiltrating Trotskyite thug”, though I am also a fairly normal retired scientist.
    I am sticking with Corbyn, since I prefer simple incompetence to equal incompetence plus complete dishonesty

  26. Baby Gerald

    Hello again! After scanning the links posted here over the past couple days in both Yves’s and Lambert’s aggregations and in the related comments fields, I haven’t see any mention of this incredibly well-researched story by one of my journalistic heroes, Glenn Greenwald, so I thought I’d share:


    In summary, he calls out the neo-McCarthyist red-baiting used by the Clintonistas in the run up to this election in November for exactly what it is, while also exposing just how much Russia has gained from deals negotiated by our presumptive heir to the throne and her husband over the past two decades.


Comments are closed.