Links 8/28/2016

Little People, Big Woes in Hollywood: Low Pay, Degrading Jobs and a Tragic Death Hollywood Reporter

Why we should get three-day weekends– all the time The Conversation

Hidden Assets, Hidden Costs TLS

Inspired by elephants, entrepreneur turns sleepy yoga magazine into digital juggernaut Columbia Journalism Review

Fitter, dumber, more productive New Statesman

Millions at risk as deadly fungal infections acquire drug resistance Guardian

As La Guardia Is Overhauled, the Check-In Line Starts at the Highway NYT

Greece Was the Prologue Jacobin

Unholy Roman Emperor  TLS

Where the Death Penalty Still Lives NYT

American Football player Kaepernick refuses to stand for anthem BBC

Who are the hackers who cracked the iPhone? BBC

The World’s Biggest Marine Refuge: 442,000 Square Miles, 7,000 Species, 5 Sunken Aircraft Carriers The Atlantic

Now You Can Finally Use Your Drone to Make Money MIT Technology Review

The Things You Might Be Doing That Will Force Your IT Guy to Start Spying on You New York Magazine

Night Tube gives welcome jolt to London’s bars and restaurants FT

BOJ’s Kuroda Says Ready to Ease as Jackson Hole Debates Options Bloomberg

A weak yuan is a bigger threat to the global economy than Brexit Marketwatch

Is the McMansion era over? Treehugger

PwC settles $5.5bn fraud detection lawsuit FT. PwC caps its liability and dodges a potential firm-threatening bullet.

Most Welfare Dollars Don’t Go Directly to Poor People Anymore (resilc)

Ruling Pushes Door to Grad-Student Unions ‘Wide Open’ The Chronicle of Higher Education

‘Yes Minister’ remains an unrivalled guide to British politics FT

Improving Global Food Security With a Device That Sweats MIT Technology Review

A momentous peace deal with the FARC – so what next for Colombia? The Conversation

Rodrigo Duterte’s Campaign of Terror in the Philippines  New Yorker

Philippines: Who’s liable for the mounting death toll? Al Jazeera

In the Shadow of the CIA: Liberalism’s Big Embarrassing Moment Counterpunch.

50th day of curfew in Kashmir: 10 developments Times of India

Contractor who came in from the cold The Hindu

Australians rally against refugee detention centres Aj Jazeera


The Farce That Is FOIA: the State Department Stonewalled the Associated Press for Three Years on Foundation Donor Story (Chuck L)

How the Trumps Got Rich Jacobin

Basically, Donald Trump’s Border Wall Already Exists Mother Jones

Democratic Pundits Downplay Serious Ethical Issues Raised by the Clinton Foundation The Intercept

Breitbart Rises From Outlier to Potent Voice in Campaign NYT


Syria à la Carte: Turkish Invasion Highlights Rapidly Shifting Alliances Der Spiegel

India has a role to play in combating terror: Bashar-al-Assad Defence News

Assad’s War on Aleppo New Yorker

Wedding Crashers Who Kill Counterpunch

Turkey could be overplaying its hand with Syria ground offensive as civil war reaches crucial point Independent

Turkey targets Kurdish forces south of Syria’s Jarablus Al Jazeera


Germany Warns U.K. That Brexit Talks Will Be Very Difficult Bloomberg

Brexit ‘will put 75% of workers at risk of pension shortfall Guardian

Theresa May accused of acting like a ‘Tudor monarch’ over plans to deny parliament Brexit vote Independent

Antidote du jour:owl_bird_eyes

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. Jim Haygood

    McMansions are dying, says the linked TreeHugger article. But in a one-two punch, so are golf course subdivisions:

    More than 800 golf courses have closed nationwide in the last decade, as operators grapple with declining interest in the sport and a glut of competition.

    Many of those shuttered courses were built on land proscribed from redevelopment by local zoning codes seeking to preserve open space—or, as in Ahwatukee, Arizona, by deed restrictions intended to protect homeowners who had paid a premium to live near a golf course.

    That leaves some golf course owners with the real estate equivalent of an unplayable lie: They can’t make money running the course, and they can’t recoup their investment by selling it.

    Participation in the sport is down 20 percent since 2003, according to data from the National Golf Foundation, and homebuilders have moved on to new types of recreational amenities, including manmade lakes and agricultural communities.

    It’s not easy to think out of the box. I’d always just assumed that a golf course is an amenity that adds value to houses, whether the owner golfs or not. A couple of nearby golf course subdivisions from the bubble years have never been fully built out, which I ascribed to local factors. BUT … maybe it’s a secular, cultural change, as Bloomberg suggests.

    It’s not as if our beloved president hasn’t been doing his utmost to support the sport. :-0

    1. Jim Haygood

      And a coup de grace from MarketWatch:

      Gin Property in Senoia, GA is among a growing number of traditional neighborhood developments that are looking to an idealized past to recreate village life. These freshly minted, old-style communities feature leafy streets of historic-looking homes with porches and sidewalks, shared green spaces and shops.

      In a shift away from gated golf-course communities, with their cul de sacs of Tuscan villas and Normandy castles, these ungated developments are designed to create a strong sense of place, with neighbors, a coffee shop and the town dentist all within walking distance. Picture Andy Griffith’s Mayberry with high-speed internet.

      Yep … a golf course would be pretty anachronistic in a “freshly-minted 19th century village.” Not that this would trouble your average developer, who would be happy to include a golf course, a spaceport, or an artificial volcano with a steam vent, if they would increase buyer traffic.

      1. Carolinian

        Not to mention that golf can be an environmentally dubious form of recreation. Out west you’ll occasionally find golf courses in the middle of the desert using water from whatever nearby river provides the town’s grandfathered water rights. I once camped next to the Green River where a huge hose was sucking water off to a nearby golf course. The course was a tiny patch of green in an ocean of brown and seemingly existed just to give the tiny town some tourist appeal.

        1. Oregoncharles

          Our property is on a small river in the Willamette Valley; remember, Oregon may be wet in the winter, but it’s arid in the summer. Right now, you can walk across the river without getting your knees wet.

          There are two golf courses upstream, both with water rights in the river. We were told that if both turned on their pumps at the same time, the river would run backwards – away from us. It’s the source of our well water.

          One of those courses, the nearer one, is now for sale because it isn’t making it and the owners would like to retire. They want an exhorbitant amount for it. It would be worth that much if it were developable, but it’s in the flood plain and much of it is floodway – the source of the flood water that hits us. The county tells me it cannot be developed, except for one corner I’m not worried about. Crossing our fingers.

          So what CAN be done with it? Park or urban farm are about the only options. The city isn’t about to buy it, certainly not at that price. Probably a lawsuit in its future.

          1. Harry

            In the last several years, so many golf courses were being turned into housing developments that Texas passed a law to make it illegal.

        2. Carla

          The “building at the main entrance” referred to below is the clubhouse of the former Acacia Country Club. Apparently it takes only 5 years of no chemical applications for nature to re-claim a golf course.

          “Acacia Reservation, a 155-acre green space oasis, is located in the City of Lyndhurst. The west branch of Euclid Creek flows northwest through Acacia Reservation to join the main creek branch in Euclid Creek Reservation. A 1.7-mile paved loop trail is located in the Reservation, and the building at the main entrance is currently available to rent for programming and events.”

      2. nippersdad

        Senoia is just down the road from us, and is virtually indistinguishable from all of the other late nineteenth century mill towns in West Georgia; smaller than some, larger than others. The irony of these new subdivisions is that they replicate (albeit on a grander scale) the towns that they find themselves within, just without the riffraff, poor upkeep and later infill buildings.

        If they really want to be true to concept what they need are some armadilloes in the crawlspace, otherwise what is there to talk about at night on those porches (that I doubt they use anyway)? Air conditioning killed the front porch for a reason, and aesthetics alone will not replicate the culture that engendered them. The only thing holding that group together is the half a mill they spent to get something that they could have spent ten percent as much for a half mile away.

      3. polecat

        “or an artificial volcano with a steam vent”…….

        I like it !! ……
        ….. add in a functional lava flow…..if things don’t pencil out, just burn it off…and “re”develope!

    2. Katharine

      >They can’t make money running the course, and they can’t recoup their investment by selling it.

      Goose motels. At least in the eastern half of the country, that should be easy, not to say inescapable. Harvest the guano and sell as fertilizer.

      If they really don’t have people interested in golf, they could shift to a different form of landscaping and have pleasure gardens, suitable for beautiful weddings, outdoor concerts, &c. Or, local ordinances permitting, convert to modern “natural” burial grounds.

      1. polecat

        Maybe ‘mound building’ will come back into vogue …again

        many of those courses have rather serpentine shaped holes! …. a pattern to follow…

          1. Jim Haygood

            A lovely spectacle to observe from a silk-roofed sedan chair.

            It’s a pity North America lacks indigenous water buffalo to assist them with their labours.

      2. Pat

        I’m reminded that just recently I saw a news featurette on Arnold Palmer’s second career as a designer of golf courses. Apparently it has been more lucrative than his time as a pro golfer. I doubt most of those failing courses hired him or his company, but to me it says a lot about the hollowing out of the middle of the America’s financial spectrum. There was also the article about how more Americans are staying home. They focused on car travel and bus travel, but it won’t surprise me if air travel is down in the peak travel months. Think about it, gas has been cheap lately.

        I suppose I’m asking do we really think it is that people no longer are interested in playing golf or is it that lots more people can no longer afford to play golf, even partially. I truly do think the tsunami of financial devastation is moving up the financial ladder. I’m just seeing lots and lots of signs that more people are being switched from one side of the inequality equation to the other.

        1. FluffytheObeseCat

          Yes. The 10% that Lambert likes to mention is real……. and increasingly stressed, particularly it’s younger would-be members. Speaking as someone who lived of necessity, not desire, in a golf course exurb in the early part of this century, even among younger families who want to live on the res, by ~2010 fewer joined the club, and fewer still the golf portion of it, than had been expected from the past. I gayrantee money was part of the why. But, so was time. The younger (middle aged) men don’t have it. Quite often their now employed wives don’t either. And upper middle class parents tend to spend more time with their kids now during their (briefer) leisure time. So golf eats it.

        2. griffen

          The time consuming nature of the game, absent any practice or instruction commitment is a marker. I think the rise of alternative ventures such as UFC and the tough mudder events typify a new generation not comitted to golf.

          As far as class marker, I have walked plenty rounds of golf on local muni courses for under $30. With a used set of irons that will not rust and may last another 20 yrs if I want them to.

      3. Eclair

        I like the idea of converting golf courses to burial grounds. How about combining that with a veggie/fruit farm/orchard? And the geese can wander around also. So much more satisfying than a golf course.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          Golf courses and football fields.

          Also cutting down on more carbon-emitting concrete placements. Perhaps tents made from plastic bags for sleeping under trees (because we need more trees). So, here is one idea – golf courses to tree-lined eco-living shelters filled with plastic-bag-tents.

    3. optimader

      So these people that mill around in garish uniforms carrying CFiber warcluds w/ polished Titanium lumps on the end are being released on their own recognizants into my little village?? We’re going to have to beef up Poleleassin.

      In my parts is a place called Oakbrook where there are some of the original “gated communities” that have actually on the second round of bigger shacks (possibly where the name was coined?–the home of McDonalds Corp).

      In any case, these have substantially turned into Ethnic Gettos populated w/ affluent Indian and Chinese that think gated communities are a desirable differentiation of affluence.

      For me these are great , big curved street bike ride transits i can fly on between bike paths as they are absolutely devoid of people during daylight hours, like a neutron bomb went off, Apparently the residence don’t care to be outside during the day.

    4. Tom_Doak

      Part of the problem is that during the boom, many golf courses were built much more expensively than they should have been to make the development lots more attractive [lavish clubhouses, extra irrigation, etc.], but then the developer loaded much of the debt onto the golfers, while he profited off the lot sales. More than half the homeowners in golf developments are non-golfers, who don’t pay anything for the upkeep of the course. But they overpaid for their lots on the assumption that someone would be keeping up the golf course in perpetuity.

      1. EndOfTheWorld

        Yeah, golf is ridiculous. Even more so in Japan, where they love the game but have no space whatsoever.

        The golfers should all switch to pocket billiards. Same green color, also using eye to hand coordination, but uses much less space.

        1. DJPS

          I don’t see a lot of green when I play pocket billiards. You might want to see a doctor about that! ;-)

        2. hunkerdown

          What’s wrong with mini-golf? Except that fiberglass cartoon animals don’t match the blood-watered green field aesthetic so popular among our Betters.

      2. optimader

        I’ve played exactly twice, in northern WI, in my early 20’s because it was raining and we couldn’t go waterskiing. seems like a rather tedious sport.

    5. Arizona Slim

      Golf has three problems: It’s difficult to master, it’s time consuming, and it’s expensive.

          1. Brian

            and they use all kinds of chemicals to kill anything that moves. They send hunters in at night to silently wipe out non wanted fauna. These are toxic waste dumps after the fact, and you have to know which ones were dumpsites before the fact. The lake grows algae very well. Don’t go out without your hardhat.
            Karl takes care of them still, and he is still working on genmod bluegrass over by the 10th hole. Beware his traps.

          2. Brian

            And the repository for every chemical made to kill bug and beast, and any wrong type of green vegetable. Was it a toxic waste dump before it was a golf course? Well it is now! I remember when golf was $4 and we called it exercising with beer.

          3. visitor

            And something that few people appreciate: it is extremely unhealthy.

            The twisting-screwing-swinging when hitting the ball is the worst possible kind of motion for the spine. Think disc hernia in the middle of the spine.

            By their 40s, professional golfers have their spine ruined. Tiger Woods underwent 3 surgeries to patch up his because of the damage caused by golfing.

            1. RepubAnon

              Golf used to be the way business people networked – salespeople took customers or other business contacts out for a day of golf. Not sure whether that’s still the case.

            2. aab

              My dad always had back problems but LOVED golf. He could never get that good, because his spine prevented it and then the golfing made his back worse. He called golf his cruel mistress, and finally quit out of both financial privation and despair.

              He died eight inches shorter than he had been in his prime. Vertebrae just crumbled into dust.

          4. optimader

            I would perpetually be thinking I could be on a bike ride –nice cool breeze,or swimming and drinking ice cold beer.
            RE: toxic, in my area the is a Cancer occurrence hot spot adjacent to an “August” old country club generally in the direction of the prevailing wind plume— i think surface water percolates in that direction as well

      1. Jim Haygood

        The latter two “problems” are actually prerequisites for any recreational activity of the privileged, while your first cavil preserves the competitive element essential for one-upmanship.

        Veblen touched on this in Theory of the Leisure Class (1899), with further elaboration by the late Paul Fussell in Class.

        Verdict: golf’s a winner!

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          All tools to exclude.

          No money, no time and not good enough.

          Similarly, fashion works like that – it’s to exclude. You have no hair, you’re too short and you don’t look pretty enough.

          Sometimes, the unfashionable fight out. Look at the samurai hair cut (a bald lane throught the top of the head) – the old, balding guys could have as much fashion chance as the young, hairy ones

      2. neo-realist

        From my experience of playing miniature golf, the pursuit of the “hole in one” along with the proper touch to achieve it became quite addictive. That along with golf’s use as a means of elite networking in common company and of contemplation while alone may explain its popularity.

        That being said, when it comes to watching others play golf, I find it about as entertaining as watching paint dry. But others seem to be watching it for the networks don’t fail to televise golf tournaments.

    6. Punta Pete

      As others have commented, it may not be so much a matter of declining interest as declining free time, as well as the disappearance of middle class white collar jobs and well-paying blue collar jobs. Growing up in a working class steel town in the 60’s, I knew many factory workers who would play golf on their days off or in the morning before their 3 to 11 shift began. Green fees weren’t that expensive and everyone carried their own clubs or used a hand-pulled golf cart. (I wonder if the move to require golfers to use – and pay for – electric golf carts as part of the green fees at many (most?) courses hasn’t cut into the demand for the sport.)

  2. craazyman

    This is pretty incredible. This could be a link if not a post unto itself. Maybe Jerri-Lynn can take this one on, since Yves pretty much just ignores my link suggestions for some reason, even though all sorts of nonsense makes links, like economics and finance links, which everybody knows are purely made up in people’s heads — economics and finance that is. People just make up “money” and then they believe it. I could make up stuff too, and believe it, but I try to think clearly..

    If Jerri-Lynn has analytical skills and likes digging down to the facts, this could be a gold mine of revelation . . .

    I heard on the radio a guy who says he was a U.S. marine fighting aliens on Mars in a secret military program. This is amazing if it’s true. It certainly merits thoughtful scrutiny. Here’s a paragraph:

    “The main territorial conflict on Mars is with the indigenous reptoid and insectoid species, Cramer reported. He shared details of fighting in the Draconian (reptoid) invasion as well as his time piloting an Airwing aboard the intergalactic air carrier EDF SS Nautilus. Cramer estimated he has had his body replaced several dozen times because of dangerous and harsh conditions on Mars and in space. The process involves hatching a fresh clone and pumping it with the soul, which he described as a quantum fluid. After his service, he was again placed in a newly cloned body that was physically the same age as when he was deployed.”

    1. diptherio

      Sounds legit, although I have to say that Coast-to-Coast’s credibility really took a hit after Art stopped hosting…a lot of real whackos on nowadays…not this guy, obviously, but some of the guests are really out there.

    2. Paul Tioxon

      You know, the problem with this site is people just like you that Yves and Lambert has let run amok with crackpot issues from the sewage sites from the darkest corners of the internet. It is totally hypocritical to let the serious issues be completely ignored for the precious little hobby horses that we must all genuflect before critical thinkers such as myself are allowed to respond.

      I have just lost a few precious minutes of the remaining drab years of my life witnessing the garbage story of aliens on Mars with a link no less THAT I WILL NEVER GET BACK. YOLO STUPID! Thank God I did not click on that or I would probably be whisked away into a quarantined ransom site that would lock up my computer right before my ebay bids for comics books was about to run down to the last 5 minutes and I couldn’t outbid that jerk from Jersey who snipes in the last 2 seconds with his fancy software.

      But what I really want to know is why NAKED CAPITALISM has never mentioned the widely revealed truth for the immediate visits to America by newly minted Popes of the Roman Catholic Church? We know the 4th Reich is being managed by the transfer of Hitler’s Brain into the new Popes body that has to occur in a secret bunker 52 stories beneath the Pentagon, which was built expressly for the purpose of containing that metaphysical evil. The defeat of the NAZIs and the capture of Hitler’s brain has struck the final, decisive blow in the Eternal War Between Fire And Ice! And by the powers of Christ compelling the safe guarding of Earth by such evil, we are redeemed. The truth once seen by your eyes can not be unseen.
      There, I said it.

      1. ambrit

        Mr Tioxin;
        Being somewhat into the ‘Tinfoil Hat Zone’ myself, allow me to attempt an ‘apologia for crackpots.’
        First, many of the posts by craazyman are exercises in Intellectual Dada (ID) if you will. Highlighting the absurd aspects of life will often clean out the cobwebs that accumulate over time as “sober and correct dogmas” do their work. As such, the ID process is essential to facilitate the growth and nurture of Politically Incorrect theories. Absent the ID process, often subsumed under the concept of “creative destruction” in the economic sphere, sclerosis set in and hastens the “end of official history” in human development. As observation will inform, nothing in the “real” world is static. Change is a basic item of existence.
        Second, unless and until the Site Administrators decree otherwise, humour will remain a primary form of agitation for “unpopular” points of view. History, the unfiltered kind, shows that such “unpopular” points of view often become accepted as superior hypothesis to the previous “received wisdom” promoted by the ‘official sources,’ often described as ‘the usual suspects.’ When the present dogmas are promoted as ‘sober and correct,’ and immune from criticism, humour is often the easiest way to crack the armoured egg of ‘official’ acceptance that tries to perpetuate the status quo.
        Remember Schiaparellis “Canals” on Mars? They got Lowell onto his career path of becoming a famous astronomer. Fictioneers began writing stories about exotic dying civilizations galumphing about on Mars. Eventually, such ‘received wisdom’ became Marvin the Martian. A complete cycle in a hundred years.
        Finally, as some attest, the optimum state of a human life is ‘Balance.’ This not only includes rational and fact based contemplation, but also, and necessarily so, fun. The anecdote I prefer to use as an illustration of that is a story my high school mathematics teacher told the class one day. He had worked in the maths department of the Manhattan Project, out in the desert. The math boffins would play a reverse riddle game. First, the ‘punch line’ would be spread around the ‘office.’ Then everyone had to figure out the ‘set up’ question.
        One example I remember is; “Chicken Teriyaki.” Easy, or at least that’s how Mr Zoloff described it, the question being; “Who is the oldest living Kamikazi pilot?”
        So, everywhere one goes, human nature is also there, in all of its multifarious and effulgent glory.
        Have a fun day.

        1. Steve H.

          Thank you, ambrit, that was wonderful.

          – Do I contradict myself?
          Very well then I contradict myself,
          (I am large, I contain multitudes.)

            1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

              Let’s not forget the fact that a very large number of our current controversies started life as tinfoil hat lunatic ravings.
              “The US is funding al-Qaeda!”; “Search engines are skewing results for Hilary!”, “The Clinton Foundation is funded by crooks paying for US Gov’t favors!”
              All suggestions that were soundly ridiculed when they first appeared.
              And science itself is not exempt, I’m sure the mainstream media of the time had a field day with Galileo’s assertion that the Sun was the center of the solar system. And how about the “science” of economics? Tinfoilers were the first to recognize that the Fed’s policies actually work counter to their objectives, now the IMF, World Bank, and some Fed’ers themselves have sheepishly agreed.
              So I say Tinfoil On!

        2. Emma

          Craazyman is so right on this though he threatens our very democracy and freedumbs with great pearls of fiery wisdom like this!

          It all might be boiled down to the simple yet revelatory outer-world essence of life… that, quite frankly, phantom raspberry blows are a prerequisite for not being two sandwiches short of a picnic!

          Even Cornwallis got it.

          Good Grief!

          Not the surprisingly popular Admiral Sir William one nicknamed “Mr Whip”.

          But the simple Sir one who wrote in his (quite brilliant) Essay on Suspicion “thus is the making things good or ill equally in our choise as the being good or ill” and that “Even as the pestilecies of corrupt humors are fed by ill diet, and slowly go on in their infectious natures, and increase so easily they show not their extremity sodainly, so is the order of our life disordered by giving way to the qualities of our affections, and as we loose ground in the right managing of our selves, the other gets”.

          Which is to say that we can all be together in a flight of storks pigging out atop a landfill site, or rather, migrate to where the good s**t truly ‘is’. You know, just like pigs who can fly, improving upon the technique of that first one back in 1909 care of Baron Brabazon of Tara.

            1. Emma

              Ah yes….well any “well-educated” lady is always so humbly conscious of the delightful adroitness of men!
              ( ;-) )

            2. craazyman

              I think she’s smarter than her brothers. She got the brains, we both got the “bro” gene.

        3. Chauncey Gardiner

          Thanks, Ambrit. Like the daily antidotes on NC, I find a sprinkling of levity helps keep overall balance and perspective, including many of the comments by craazy and this one by you. Besides enjoying craazyman’s creativity and writing skill, I have also found many of his to be indirectly insightful, even if occasionally somewhat “off-topic” and after-the-fact (but then, this is the “Links” section, which by definition could entail some critical thinking).

              1. Emma

                Quite profound! Only confirms my belief that each and everyone of us should use our capacity to learn for this world would be a better place for us all.

        4. Paul Tioxon

          Suddenly, even I have gone too far! What? craazyman has an exclusive on saying absurd things? Not me? what am I, chopped meat!

          And by the way, I was having a fun day. I was hoping that there would be some sharing of relief causing absurdity. At least Lambert made a contribution in the spirit of coming up with the most ridiculous riff and riding it. I mean, try it yourself, the juxtaposition of Hitler, the most evil guy usually thought of and the Pope, God’s man on Earth, and wacky tension just has to ensue.

          Even this summer’s big movie is Superman vs Batman, I mean, who saw that coming? Not me, and I follow that stuff. Notice how craazyman cleverly sucks us all in by mentioning Jerri-Lynn and complaining about Yves ignoring his links. This starts in the normal world we are so familiar with and then, whammo, it’s off to Mars, Space Wars and Cloning! Pretty crazy stuff. But, what do you expect from a guy with his name?

          So, all in all, structuring my post in the way I did should give some indication that I too can say crazy things in the sheer hope that just once this summer, my fevered imagination may actually not wind up on cable news within 24 hours after I attempt to satirize the election where everyone is losing their goddamned minds.

          Saving Hitlers’s brain, it’s a thing, AND IT’S ALIVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          1. ambrit

            Commiserations, I regret to have traduced your character.
            I have heard that the Furhers brain is indeed alive and now referred to as “Davos Man.”

    3. optimader

      The main territorial conflict on Mars is with the indigenous reptoid and insectoid species,
      Maybe he should just put out buckets of toothpaste for them to eat?

        1. HBE

          From the NYT

          Unnamed officials confirm that US intelligence sources discovered that at several Russian Universities including Moscow University, several Russian professors specialize in entomology. Experts state these professors (the Russians don’t even have adjuncts!) knowledge of insects, means the Russians have the technical understanding to engineer insectoids capable of withstanding the Martian climate. They also have an aviation Institute in Moscow where the study of aviation would allow them to build a spacecraft to transport the communist insects to Mars.

          The confirmed Russian backed insectoids are clearly massing on the edge of Mars in preparation for an invasion against US backed “activists” (neo-nazi dinosaurs). A clear violation of the sovereignty of Mars.

          Experts from the state department and the Brookings Institute, recommend the IMF provide another tranche of funding to the actively engaged dinosaurs, especially after the downing of asteroid MH…

          1. jonboinAR

            If I ever get drafted to fight the insect aliens, I hope I end up in the same company as that badass chick in Starship Troopers.

      1. RepubAnon

        If I’m ever captured by aliens, I’m going to ask that they let me put a John Carter action figure in the path of one of the Mars rovers…

    4. HopeLB

      Lambert should really take you up on your carefully chosen links . We would all love it! (Well, maybe just me.) What should Lambert name your category? Craazyman’s Reality?

      1. ambrit

        Oh yes, it is definitely a serial subject; Real Reality, Official Reality, and Alt Reality.
        How about, Overtons Reality?

  3. mad as hell.

    American Football player Kaepernick refuses to stand for anthem BBC.

    If and when this starts spreading out to seats in the stadiums then some eyes are going to open wide. It is very personal when an individual does it alone!

    1. nippersmom

      I’ve never been a fan of Colin Kaepernick the quarterback; I have new respect for Colin Kaepernick the person.

          1. optimader

            Friends made me watch that once.. Jim McMahon was the QB, he’s abt my age and has dementia now. Always struck me as a very destructive sport.

            I just quickly read his bio– it appears he was terribly oppressed

      1. Brindle

        Yes, better citizen than QB. I occasionally listen to “sports radio” while driving—surprisingly there was some attempt to understand Kaepernick’s position.

        1. fresno dan

          August 28, 2016 at 9:54 am

          I actually observed some nuance and attempt to give a “fair and balanced” explanation for Kaepernick’s point of view…..wait for it…on FOX! Now, I don’t watch Fox enough to know how many “debates” on their 99% pundit yammering shows with the debate premise being:
          1. Hang Kaepernick
          2. Burn him at the stake.

          But I think Trump has revealed to Fox that the “conservative” base is not some monolith that thinks Bush kept us safe, Iraq was an excellent adventure, and that old people think social security should be cut. Ailes as an ideologue, and Murdoch as a businessman are not 100%, and I dare say, not even 50% aligned. And Murdoch is ALL about the money – he skewed Trump for rating dollars, and only rating dollars.
          There are a LOT of disaffected white people, and a lot of poor white people, and hiding behind the flag and doing everything possible to advance the interests of the wealthy is something that is becoming more and more obvious to them.
          Rah, Rah AMERICA!!! when Trump is saying the system is rigged and the elections are fixed is inconsistent with mindlessly spouting off that America CAN DO NO WRONG, America is perfect, and ONLY COMMIES complain. (Not to mention….all Fox does is….Complain)
          (And, come to think of it…isn’t evil incarnate Hillary basically accusing Trump of being a commie???? So Mr. Ailes – is LIBERAL Hillary, or Commie Trump, worse???)
          So, using the flag to pillory people has lost its mojo.

          1. jrs

            Fox is not the worst. It’s an article of a certain kind of liberal faith that it is, but actually CNN is far worse (all war propaganda, all the time). Fox can sometimes be fair in a way the other stations aren’t, even though it’s conservative skew is at times self-parody. Now that’s just a comment on one oligopoly media empire, not being quite as bad as liberals like to portray it (which hardly makes it particularly good).

            To the larger point: I still don’t think conservatism as such has much to offer the left. Remember even Trumps slogan “make America great again” is “rah rah America” (it throws back to past “greatness”). But more basically, they might not like Social Security cut (good I’ll take what I can get, although I still think the best shot for this was Bernie Sanders) but they may have no problem having welfare, food stamps, etc. cut. No friend of anyone left of Clinton there. There is also an authoritarian strain to the right that is not going to sit well with the often egalitarian left. It’s really hard to mesh a belief in basic human equality and self-determination, with one in the necessity of often harsh authoritarian controls.

            1. Pat

              I agree with you that Sanders was the best shot for protecting Social Security. Same with Medicare, and what little is left of welfare and food stamps. However, it isn’t as if the cuts to welfare and food stamps in the last two decades hadn’t been bipartisan, and in some case actively Democratic (See Clinton 1). And some food stamps cuts in the states recently are directly the result of legislation passed during the Clinton presidency. Little or not enough Democratic obstruction to be seen (and yes it was possible).

              Once again it is incredibly sad that not one major party candidate could be considered to be moderate as that would be left of Clinton and as you note Trump isn’t that.

      2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        He can better protest by refusing to accept American money.

        “Here, you can have my $10 million a year salary.”

        “And I refuse to play for a trust, exempt from anti-trust laws.”

        1. griffen

          I ain’t holding my breath. His brief flirtation with greatness as a starter earned him untold millions.

          He ain’t Jim Brown, Bill Russell or Ali. He couldn’t carry their shorts at this point.

        2. aab

          That’s ridiculous.

          The money isn’t “American.” If he turned down his salary, it would go back into the accounts of the billionaire trust funder who owns the team, who will then pay out some of it to some other, more compliant player.

          Are you seriously suggesting that him quitting football is a more meaningful political act that publicly refusing to stand for the anthem on TV, for a sport that makes enormous amounts of money off pretending that a game played under near-slavery working conditions by primarily men of color for parasitic owners is, in reality, patriotic, just like our glorious military?

          He may have killed his football career (not just as a player, but everything else, from coaching to talking head, to signing autographs) by doing this. It was a highly visible act. We have seen what has happened in the past to black athletes who protest American state violence publicly; it’s not good. I’m guessing he knows the history here. If so, he was brave to do this.

          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            The anthem and the flag are symbols for many people of this nation.

            He can sit or act as he wishes, but focusing no the anthem muddles his message.

            I suggest there are other, more effective ways, given the US currency money he’s got.

            1. aab

              What would they be? Because quitting would just make him poor and invisible. The next guy up would be unlikely to be so daring.

              I hope he sits every week. It’s such a powerful gesture within the context of the NFL that I bet he can’t. Roger Goddell’s power and pettiness are equally unrestrained.

              1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

                He has plenty of money, over $10 million this year alone. There is plenty to do and he can speak out as well, offering some solutions.

                1. aab

                  Offering some solutions to institutionalized racism? You think an NFL QB can and should be responsible for personally inventing a new and more effective solution to racism? Because he IS speaking out. That’s why we’re talking about him.

                  I’m confused as to what you think he could do that would be more powerful and effective than this protest. And you continue to be vague and unresponsive. What is it about this kid that’s actually bugging you?

    2. timbers

      I am offended by the American flag and what this nation stands for – empire & mass murder of browned skinned people throughout the world (and other nasty stuff). I hate 4th of July not just because my dogs cowar in terror from all the explosions from fire works and won’t do their business what I walk them – seriously throwing a wrench into my schedule – but also because non stop USA is the bestest. No, it’s not. Every time a 4th of July firework goes off I want to call the cops to report an act of “terror.” But ….. That’s just me.

        1. timbers

          I get the “Agree or leave” or Shut up or leave” arguement a lot….:-) but mostly when I talk about all the terrorist we’re funding …

          1. optimader

            Wowzers!.. hardly suggesting you change your opinion or shut up, just suggesting you seek out happiness, I’m guessing you are youngerish 20’s-30’s?. Ultimately you are your own limitation when it come to translating your feelings into a more satisfying life..

            Why ever would you want to live in a country you detest? that makes no sense. OTOH I do know a few people that have moved because they were depressed/unhappy/”hate” /the place they lived ( three Americans and two Germans). In all cases, their underlying issues moved with them.

            In any case, based on this:,
            there are apparently quite a few people still that would love to trade places with you in this imperfect Country with crazy political leaders.

            but mostly when I talk about all the terrorist we’re funding …
            could it be how you present your opinion that people respond to you with a conversation closer??
            So if you hate it here, but not enough to leave, what exactly are you doing to make it a better place besides writing blog comments?

        2. Kurt Sperry

          The ugly truth is nobody wants Americans unless they bring a huge pile of money with them and it ain’t the American they want then.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Be offended by acts, not objects that are not clear-cut protest symbols.

        The flag may mean different things to different people – maybe a parent who died in Normandy or someone killed simply being our fellow countryman abroad.

        In that sense, it’s not an effective protest.

        1. Skip Intro

          If it were an ineffective protest, though the flag has been used as a protest symbol for generations, we wouldn’t see commenters compelled to flail about in ill-fitting purity troll costumes trying to harness resentment against his brief but high earnings, or exploiting soldiers and families of war dead to raise antipathy. But thanks for your concern.

      2. jrs

        I don’t like it much either. Offended, honestly I’m not sure most Americans actually celebrate that if they do anything 4th related. Many are ignorant, and many are just having a day off and watching the fireworks. We might say they should boycott but we don’t live in that kind of world.

        I’ve often wondered: why aren’t many more people passionate about stopping the wars etc.? Why do the issues that at times offend me so much pass nearly unnoticed? My only conclusion is most people are too consumed with trying to survive economically to care too much, especially as it seems they can do little about it. That may be a generous explanation … kinder than they deserve, but it’s how I make sense of it.

        1. Joe Hunter

          RE: Your comment about how Americans feel and celebrate the Fourth of July is the same for Labor Day – just a “Day Off”. Who remembers the reason for Americans celebrating “Labor”. And who remembers Francis Perkins – a remarkable Lady.

        2. polecat

          the 4th……??? a large % of the public lives to blow shit up because…well…because !!

          …nothing to do with freedom, liberty, or democracy.

          1. optimader

            Who doesn’t like a fireworks display actually? I don’t seek them out but certainly can appreciate the esthetic.
            IMO, DE makes an excellent point.
            Because footage of our horrific wars isn’t on the news every day,
            It should be required to maintain a broadcast license. As well there should be a draft that is nonnegotiable for the privileged class. Elected officials eligible children on the first plane out–“best and brightest” afterall

      3. Arizona Slim

        Me? I like to save my mouthing off for the Pledge of Allegiance. That last line, the one about liberty and justice for all. I don’t just recite it, I yell it.

        It never fails to get me some funny looks.

    3. so

      Great respect for Colin Kaepernick. I have my own ritual for the anthem and other displays of faux patriotism. I head for the toilets.

      1. polecat

        The thing is he has the mantle of celebrity to shield him from the abuses that a lessor than sports god would be subject to …… same kind of teflon with re. to Hollywood…or singer celebs …….. so I’m not particularly impressed ….

          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            It’s better to focus on the perpetrators, their acts and deeds.

            No need to involve the anthem, the flag or innocent people.

        1. jonboinAR

          None the less, his action will definitely bring the issue more into the limelight. The very controversial nature of his sitting out the NA provokes widespread discussion.

    4. John Wrightt

      I recall a few more cases of US athletes using their temporary and prominent stage to wage a US government protest, for example, Tommy Smith-John Carlos at the Mexico City Olympics (1968) and Wayne Collett and Vince Matthews at the Munich Olympics (1972).

      Usually they pay a personally high price of losing future endorsements/employment opportunities..

      And one can find massive irony that someone had to go to the US Supreme Court to be free to cover over the “Live free or die” slogan on the New Hampshire plates.

      Sometimes the passage of time causes people to reflect on the event more favorably, as the Smith-Carlos black power salute of 1968 now has a commemorative statue at San Jose State University in Silicon Valley.

      Prominent government protestations, like government misdeed whistleblowing, will never be welcomed by people in authority.

      1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

        “Live Free or Die” license plates that were made by…inmates in NH prisons.
        Sometimes the irony observations write themselves.

    5. FluffytheObeseCat

      Fan support of these protest acts is not likely anytime soon in American football stadiums. Only a small portion of the U.S. public attends NFL games. Those who do are overwhelmingly upper middle class now, or at least very safely middle class (in a way that few of us are safe anymore). Think management class public “servants” and their “Christian” academy schooled kids. They skew right wing in a showy, loud style.
      The dissatisfied legions can’t afford this spectator sport anymore. They can barely afford ESPN on premium cable

      1. griffen

        Check out the home crowd for Raiders, and you tell me that crowd skews right wing and Christian school kids.

        Its a mix of people who always, always go season after season. Its their vacation.

        Right wingers don’t care for the profanity either.

        1. Arizona Slim

          Profanity? Oh, brother. You are taking me back to my University of Michigan days in the late 1970s. When stadium profanity was raised to high art.

          Especially during the Ohio State game. Poor Buckeyes. Their mascot name was such a target-rich opportunity for profanity.

          1. griffen

            Nothing wrong with healthy banter among rivals, my favorite comes from ACC and tobacco road…

            Duke has their chant for Go To Heck Carolina. UNC responds with FD…the F is an action verb..

    1. Pat

      It could be staked, salted, shredded and then burned and I’d still bet a zombie version would be being touted as the ‘gold standard’ of trade deals within a year and a half tops.

      It isn’t just conservatives who never give up after being told “no” that the left should emulate, try our corporate oligarchs. For instance think how often Peterson has been told “no f*^king way” regarding his plans for Social Security, and he keeps finding old and news ways to present it. These atrocities are not going to die until we find a way to kill the indirect funding for access that our Supreme Court fails to recognize as corruption. Not sure how we are going to do that without guillotines and tumbrels, but it is the only way.

      But the fact that TTiP is floundering on multiple fronts in Europe is second only to the French health system in reasons to be jealous of Europe as a first world entity for this American.

      1. JTMcPhee

        Oligarchs like money/wealth/power, so much so that it has seemingly become an inherited trait in their phenotype. So those of us not blessed with the genes for theft, murder, graft and other forms of corruption, and the drive for mindless accumulation, are always at a disadvantage. We mopes will occasionally get irked enough to oppose one of the more virulent sallies of the Overclass, but that’s not what’s needed, of course.

        These other creatures do it out of reflex and with reflexes honed by generations of adaptation and exacerbation. (And I think of those parasites as a branch from the family tree or even a distinct species — kind of like, I think it was a Bulgarian peasant subculture, that I read about in Anthro I, where the males and females lived separate and apart except to breed, recognizing the reality that they were “of different kind,” like some invertebrate species that have to get together maybe 2 or 3 or more sexual types to reproduce — obviously the parasites employ various pheromones, hot cars and au courant styles and $2 million “timepieces” and multiple mansions, to attract sinusoidal outliers from the more general population to their mating places.)

        It is a constant struggle to keep up with the parasites, as anyone who’s caught, or had to deal with a person with, a case of crabs or head lice or a tapeworm or ringworm or liver flukes or bot fly infestation,, can attest….

        One item I think is missing from all the discourse about inequality and economics is attention to the last question among the five that reporters and writers are supposed to always be asking: the “WHY” of “who, what, when, where, and why.” People here are doing pretty good identifying all the episodes and flavors and places and times of the predations and infestattions — but WHY do some subset of humans empty their energies into what seem to me to be mindless pursuits of insatiable pleasure? Whether it’s the foodies, the stylists, the aficionados of sexy cars and gold-fixture mansions and “yachts” that are really movable cities, or huge and mindlessly growing piles of “dollars” and of course the piles of bodies and wails and tears (and then vengeance, which is at least a durable emotion and cultural thread) that go along with all that?

        WHY do some humans go down the Gotterdammerung tracks that are so carefully dissected and flagged, with such insight and wisdom and righteous indignation, by most of the people who post here? What are the impulses? Is it just that the pleasure centers of their limbic systems have gone wacky, to where there’s maybe a surgical or chemical fix? Is there a way to redirect or excise them? Anyone?

        1. Lambert Strether

          > Oligarchs like money/wealth/power, so much so that it has seemingly become an inherited trait in their phenotype.

          That’s not entirely, er, crazy. We do know that evolution can take place in near-real time. We’ve had the bourgeoisie for what, five hundred years? That’s more than enough time, and with the 1% and the 10% increasingly isolating themselves, perhaps they’re like Darwin’s insular finches. I wonder what traits exactly would be adapted for? I don’t think one could adapt for love of money, because money is an abstraction. One might adapt for greed, though, since greed is an emotion?

          1. polecat

            Perhaps the greed expressed in oligarchs akin to those finches that have developed rather deformed cross beaks…..eventually making it successively more difficult to eat..thus resigned to eventual starvation …..

            1. hunkerdown

              But the peck is all the more vicious. They might take lessons from the magpies, and cow some other species into doing the hard work of chewing so that they may swallow in tranquility.

          2. Jeremy Grimm

            Since humor seems to find some approval here is a variant — riddle embedded.
            Perhaps we are growing aware of a new lifeform — a fourth kingdom — which grew in our midst invisible through our failure to see it until now. I believe this new lifeform is a parasite upon humankind. It’s established a symbiotic relationship with the sociopaths and psychopaths selected for our oligarchs. But I fear that like many new diseases this parasite has not evolved past the point where it kills off its host and thereby brings its own extinction.

            HINT: SCOTUS helped clothing the parasite with ink and paper flesh.

            1. Jeremy Grimm

              Switcheroo! Perhaps the oligarchs are the parasites riding the new lifeforms to our general oblivion.

          3. Chauncey Gardiner

            Think you’re onto something, Lambert. Must be some research grant money out there somewhere to fund a couple of clinical studies on comparative cognition.

            Deeply puzzling behavior… Perhaps from an evolutionary perspective it’s not just about control and having more than sufficient resources for oneself and one’s offspring for generations, but also about depriving others of access to resources on a planet where essential resources could soon be in short supply?…

          4. inode_buddha

            Re your last line, I’ve been thinking for a long time now that greed is actually a form of addiction. My reasoning is that it is never satisfied until the individual is destroyed inside.

            1. Carla

              I ordered some shrubs from the Sooner Plant Farm web site. They have a Quote of the Day and today it was this:

              “A deceptive kind of greed is to think of wants as needs.” (unattributed)

              It was 95 degrees here in Cleveland today; I have been known to say that I “need” air conditioning, but of course, in my case it is a want and not a need. Greedy person that I am, I actually have it.

          5. aab

            Based on people close to me, I’d say it’s more like a constellation of traits: insensitivity, selfishness, compliancy. Greed and sociopathy are necessary to climb INTO the ruling class (or top of a corporation), but not necessary to stay in it. For that, you just have to follow the rules and tune out the suffering and injustice your status and comfort rests upon. Any Edith Wharton novel set among the aristocracy illustrates what can happen if you are unwilling to fully comply with the rules and restrictions of the upper class.

            I think the single most powerful factor in how terrible the courtier class has become is how the revised SAT and its satellite industries reward not just wealth, but a compliant personality. It’s not just that it’s been jiggered to reward cramming instead of aptitude and critical thinking, and the race for high scores exacerbates the extant wealth advantage of the test with all the expensive cram schools and tutors. It’s more than that. Starting when kids are quite young, they are rewarded for spitting out whatever the “official” correct answer has been declared to be, and punished if they refuse, by their parents, their teachers, etc. So the kids getting the perfect SAT scores aren’t just generally wealthy. They tend to be people who do as they’re told, don’t question authority, and are comfortable thinking within tightly controlled parameters. They will happily jump through hoops for status and material rewards. High school is so high stakes that for top 10% class kids (as opposed to kids like Malia Obama, who can do whatever she wants and still go to Harvard because power) they cannot slip up at all EVER all the way through if they want to get one of those few slots that really does open doors. You can’t rebel against crushing levels of control in school. You can’t rebel against counterfactual instruction. You have to, at all times, from a very young age, be willing to prioritize “achievement” above self-actualization, critical thinking, independent action, honor, etc.

            It’s not really surprising that we now see elite media, government and business stuffed full of people who think it’s actually correct to say and do whatever is necessary to please authority figures and achieve enhanced personal status and wealth, without regard to whether their words and actions are truthful, legal, moral, or productive of greater good. People who are NOT like that are likely to have slipped up, briefly, somewhere along the line, on the assembly line of sycophants, and gotten dumped off the elite conveyor belt.

          6. optimader

            Family Wealth Lasts For Ten To Fifteen Generations

            An Interview with Gregory Clark, historian of social mobility

            this has been parked in my bookmarklist

            Alice Robb: I imagine a lot of people won’t be so excited about your findings.

            HAHA.. what a great opener for an interview.. but I digress…

            AR: Is that underlying thing genetic?

            GC: I don’t know. We know that status is changing very slowly. It is not really amenable to social intervention, and it seems very connected with families. Is it something cultural that families pass on to their children, or is it to do with biology? We don’t have the information that would distinguish those two views, but we cannot reject the idea that it’s mostly genetic.

            If it were biological, then social groups with lower rates of out-marriage would be more likely to retain their status over time. We can observe historically some startling examples of such groups, and it is in fact the case that they don’t change their social status as much over time—Brahmins in India, Copts in Egypt, Jews. It doesn’t prove anything, but it does mean that we can’t reject the notion that it has something to do with biology.

    2. Steve H.

      The stake is not enough, if it’s kept in the dark. It must be brought into the sunlight, and out of the secret places.

    3. timbers

      How about instead of TPP, Obama proposes a 1,000% sales tax on everything The Little buy from groceries to cars to healthcare – and give the proceeds to Obama & Hillary’s & Mitch McConnel&Co’s ultra rich friends. Wouldn’t that be more effiecient?

    4. Brindle

      Would lover to see a “Dorothy throws water on Wicked Witch of West” moment for the TPP.
      Elmira Gulch (taker of Toto) seems to embody the pernicious aspects of neoliberalism on a small scale.

  4. JC40

    re Jacobin, on Greece you knew Tsipras was in the tank when he failed to take the obvious steps to protect the peoples of Greece: invalidate the austerity agreements for duress and threats of coercion under the Vienna Convention on the Law of Treaties Article 52; repudiate odious debt; pursue WWII reparations from Germany; renounce NATO and reallocate military expenditures as a countermeasure to derogation of economic rights.

    1. Yves Smith

      I hate to tell you, but the legal foundations of the “odious debt” argument are pretty unsound.

      And you appear not to have followed what happened. The ECB forced a bank holiday on Greece. The ECB had been using a facility designed only for temporary liquidity support for solvent banks to prop up deeply insolent Greek banks. That meant they could lower the boom on Greece any time they got political cover. Two weeks of ECB pain infliction not only produced the failure of many Greek businesses, it also led to shortages of medications. Another week and food and fuel shortages would have started (we discussed this longer form at the time, but no functioning banking system means it is almost impossible to import, and Greece is not self-sufficient in food, drugs, and fuel). We had said from the outset that Greece would not prevail in a showdown, and that is what happened.

      1. Oregoncharles

        Besides which, they never had popular support for exiting the EU or the Euro, even if that were feasible.

        I’m very struck by how much the ECB’s actions look like an act of war. Greece lost.

        1. aab

          My takeaway — based almost entirely on Naked Capitalism’s coverage at the time — is that neoliberalism has created a mechanism whereby banking can wage war more effectively than actual military engagement. Greece withstood the Nazis, but fell to the EU/ECB/Goldman Sachs nexus.

  5. Robert Hahl

    Hidden Assets, Hidden Costs TLS shows that the off-shoring of good jobs is not the half of it. Inequality is rising because the rich are simply not paying taxes. Tax “avoidance” is not a fringe activity. Very important piece.

    1. cnchal

      Globalization being used by the super predator rich as cover to hide trillions of dollars shines a new light on the problem.

      As the members of the consortium continued to extract actionable reporting from 2.6 terabytes of data (according to the Foreword by the Guardian’s Luke Harding, who may know better than I what a terabyte really is), they kept turning up the names of the tax avoiders and evaders who form a very large part of the members, attendants, sponsors and speakers of the elite institutions that so earnestly strive to guide all of us towards a better future: Davos of course, the various Aspens, the much-dem­onized but merely geriatric Bilderberg, and others such, which conjointly gather the official and unofficial leaders of advanced countries along with their would-be emulators in the rest of the world.

      No wonder that their advocacy of ever-freer across-the board globalization is so relentless and so enthusiastic: I, too, share their enthusiasm when it comes to snorkelling in Polynesia as opposed to the unbalmy waters of Virginia Beach, or hiking in Bhutan as opposed to the overcrowded Appalachian trail; but they are all too often thinking of their darling little companies in Anguilla, the Bahamas, Belize, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman islands, Costa Rica, Cyprus, Hong Kong, Malta, the Netherlands, Panama, Samoa, the Seychelles, the Isle of Man, Nevada and Wyoming among many more, which are sturdily safeguarding their money from the evils of taxation.

      Davos man is a psychotic criminal disguised as our leader.

      Given the international elite consensus, it is unsurprising that no move is made to stop offshore tax avoidance on declared incomes by simply making it more costly than the payment of taxes – and not many of the affluent in advanced countries would risk prison by switching from avoidance to outright evasion. Nor is it surprising that the pursuit of outright tax evasion is merely episodic instead of systematic: the same authorities that routinely identify, track and remotely kill individual terrorists in distant countries, which they occasionally bomb for one reason or another, profess themselves impotent before the blithely meretricious officials of micro-countries that contain little else but banks that conduct no local business, whose only raison d’être is very plainly to facilitate avoidance and collude in evasion. . .

      There is a simple reason for that. The same authorities that deliver pink mistifier bombs to wedding parties half way around the world, don’t want to bomb their own bank accounts.

      1. Chauncey Gardiner

        Excellent comment. The silence of the mainstream corporate media and politicians about the contents of these papers is deafening. Revelations about the secrecy, financial and legal mechanisms surrounding successful efforts by the global elite elite to hide the proceeds of their corruption and theft, and to avoid taxation of that wealth, have quickly fallen off the public radar screen. Golly, I wonder why?… Are our institutions dead?…

        Then there is today’s related link regarding the Obama administration State Department’s successful effort over 3 years to delay, obstruct and impair the Associated Press’s legitimate and legal inquiries under the Freedom of Information Act into the donors to the Clinton Foundation…

        The better the information that citizens have, the better the decisions they can make, and the better democracy works. Silence and secrecy are never good for functional democracy.

          1. JEHR

            From the Clinton Global Initiative:

            I tried to read from the commitment portfolio analysis of the CGI and in my own words it amounts to:

            The Clinton Foundation is an organization that helps to evaluate the effectiveness of “commitments”. It evaluates, targets and measures impacts from those who “commit” and those who commit are responsible for identifying “metrics” and measuring impact.

            I call such language gobbledygook for the purposes of appearing to say a lot and saying exactly nothing. Where are the names of people, the names of businesses and the jobs that have been successfully completed?

            1. Skippy

              Shorter…. we write our own ticket….

              Disheveled Marsupial….. Clinton Foundation seems to have used the old Veri-Sign ploy…

              1. optimader

                At least they didn’t say “reachout” but that’s probably somewhere else in the spilled ink prose

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          When you defeat Clinton, you defeat

          1. Hillary
          2. Bill
          3. Obama
          4. Bush I and Bush II
          5. corporate media
          6. Wall Street
          7. Big Business
          8 Neoconversatives
          9 Neoliberals
          10. Kissinger
          11 Wasserman-Schultz

          If you are into leveraging, that’s highly leveraged.

          1. fresno dan

            August 28, 2016 at 11:39 am
            When you say it like that, its irrefutable….

            1. bob

              Might the Dark Lord himself have to endorse her?

              I’d bet he called and ordered Wolfowitz to do it. “it’s your turn! Get out there! Fetch!”

  6. Pat

    It will never happen, because politicians want FOIA to be ineffective. But there should be an automatic fine on any government entity that cannot fulfill a FOIA request within six months that both accrues and gets exponentially higher the longer that the request goes unfulfilled. To have the fine delayed for a one time only six month extension, the government agency will have to go to court and present a direct case as to why it is impossible to meet the deadline, which includes distinct and documented reasons. The point being that the government should have to fund any and all legal action necessary to force them to meet the law. ALL OF IT. Court costs and white glove lawyers included should be easily addressed with the fines.

  7. abynormal

    In the very hard to believe category, another bank headquartered in Georgia — The Woodbury Banking Company, Woodbury, GA ($22 million) – found its way off the list through failure. Since the on-set of the Great Recession, 91 institutions headquartered in Georgia have failed. Of the 352 institutions open at year-end 2007 in Georgia, 91 or nearly 26 percent have failed, which is more than four times the national failure rate of 6 percent. It begs the question, how is it possible for there to be any banks left in the state that could fail.

    note: 5 banks began the FDIC 2008 bank closures… 3 were Bank of Alpharetta GA, home of the infomous DOCX robo. just sayn
    crawling back under my kudzu hovel…yall have a Great Sunday

    1. nippersdad

      Seems like it was a real fad here in Georgia to start banks prior to the crash purely to sell them on to larger entities. There were a couple around here that were started by local doctors to do that, and they made out like bandits. Looks like those were bets gone bad.

      I hope they kept their day jobs.

  8. snackattack

    That New Yorker piece on Aleppo, Syria is a very one-sided portrayal of the situation. The majority of Aleppo residents live in government territory, which has been subject to rebel bombardment & siege. Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which has a pro-rebel bias, reported equal civilian casualties on both sides. Assad is terrible but the al-Qaeda aligned, child-beheading, Gulf/NATO-supported groups that dominate the rebel alliance are IMO even worse, and the connection to al-Qaeda is barely mentioned and downplayed.

    1. Plenue

      The Omran Daqneesh picture is almost certainly a fake, one of many staged by the Western funded White Helmets. Al Jazeera currently has a segment on their front page asking “Why do some war images, like the one of Syrian boy Omran Daqneesh, resonate more than others?”. They ‘resonate’ because media bigwigs like the heads of AJ collude with each other via conference calls and decide what they’re going to push each week. And yes, I am cynical enough to believe that is exactly what happened.

      As for ‘Assad’s War on Aleppo’, as you say the media has once again failed to distinguish between west and east Aleppo. The western half of the city contains the bulk of the population and has remained under government control since the conflict began. After the last supply line into militant controlled east Aleppo was cut several weeks ago jihadis outside of the city launched an offensive in the south in an attempt to reverse the siege. If they win it won’t be an end to some Assad government siege; it will instead be the beginning of a siege (and probably slaughter) of the hundreds of thousands of people in western Aleppo. The whole thing a breathtaking display of media twisting reality into something completely different.

      I’m very dubious about claims of the SAA/RuAF inflicting massive civilian causalities, for one reason because there aren’t any civilians in the areas they’re targeting. It’s true one of the major areas of fighting right now is the 1070 apartment blocks, but all the pictures and footage of that area show skeletons of buildings. There’s simply nothing left for people to live in anyway. The civilians have long since fled. On top of that most of the rest of the areas in the jihadi created corridor are military locations like the artillery and technical colleges that wouldn’t have had civilians even in peace time.

        1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

          The fairly neutral Asia Times is saying that US policy in Syria “is in freefall”.
          American bombs raining on people for no remaining coherent tactical or strategic reasons.
          The spectacle of the punch-drunk bully swinging at every shadow he sees in his “blood-dimmed” eyes…somebody ding the gong already.

  9. afisher

    FOIA: It is somewhat amusing to read the complaints as if these delays have only occurred in during the current administration. One political group have called for smaller government and cut the budget of many departments and then members of the same group complain when “their” requests are backlogged / delayed.
    As for the Turley complaint – the AP has been criticized for its “reporting’ – but readers are never supposed to know that? No, not just the normal “msm” criticism, but other journalists from not-so MSM. Or is the line supposed to be, if any journalist criticizes the AP then they automatically are MSM?

    FOIA – just a quick review FYI.

    1. pretzelattack

      the criticism i’ve seen of the ap is that they didn’t have the complete logs. they didn’t have the complete logs because clinton didn’t make them available. is there another criticism?

    2. Pat

      Please explain to me why it takes over three years to produce an incomplete calendar of Clinton’s schedule and meetings as Secretary of State? And this from the “most transparent administration” ever.
      No, the complaints are not because these things have only been happening in the current administration, they are because the administration has portrayed itself and continues to lie about being transparent.

      You can complain about AP’s reporting but doing so without acknowledging that there is actually no way of confirming Clinton’s premise it is unfair because they can only base it on what they got after THREE YEARS. Oh, and that Clinton and her camp have repeatedly been shown to be liars about her time as Secretary of State.

  10. Steve H.

    The hatred of behaviorism in ‘Fitter, Dumber’ is positively political. It’s almost as if the author is trying to impose an A:B label on an enquiry of science. A bit like decrying thermodynamics to make it get in line with climate activism.

    The author takes this quote – (T)hey must be given effective reasons for behaving in those ways, and that means effective contingencies of reinforcement now. – and twists into a moral-ethical argument, ignoring the simpler and concrete understanding, which is that hungry people will steal food.

    ‘At the same time, it tries to unspeak — in the sense of erasing or silencing — any possible opposing point of view by laying a claim right at the start to only one way of looking at a problem’ is from the blurb on one of Poole’s books which applies to this article. His career assertions about videogames as a medium worthy of semiotic analysis blows bubbles on the work of John Hopson.

    It struck me as such crap that I searched * “steven poole” games deconstruct *. Yup, he went there.

      1. Steve H.

        Certainly not. Climatologists get it, climate activists occasionally believe that green tech is going to make it all better. The problem is proximately CO2 buildup, but ultimately heat dumping.

        1. Plenue

          Well, most YECs have no idea what they’re talking about, so I don’t think they can really be accused of active deceit. They’re just parroting what they read on sites like Answers in Genesis. They can be fun to interact with, like if you ask them how they have the gall to stand there as an adult in clear violation (by their logic) of the laws of physics. They’ve grown bigger and more complex with time. Life isn’t a closed system, it eats and shits if nothing else, and neither is the earth, by dint of the giant nuclear fireball next door that it leeches energy from.

    1. Plenue

      “His career assertions about videogames as a medium worthy of semiotic analysis blows bubbles on the work of John Hopson.”

      I don’t actually get what you’re saying here, specifically what ‘blows bubbles’ is supposed to mean in this context. Are you saying video games are worthy of semiotic analysis, or not? And if not, why?

      1. Steve H.

        I think they are, worthy of analysis and reflection, in the sense the Archdruid talks about.

        But Poole does a hatchet job on a science which uses data, and takes the position that the abstract not only has primacy over the figurative, but that rigorous inquiry is to be ridiculed. What he does is derivative in two senses. One is that he isn’t generating knowledge to be understood, he’s generating verbiage in the deconstructive manner. Hopson directly applied technique to the experience of the game, not the experience of talking about the game.

        To deny the impact of the mechanics and applications, is like talking about Shakespeare’s meaning without considering the meter, and how it creates the meaning. Or like uncoupling CDO’s and other derivatives from the value of the underlying mortgages, and convincing people that value has been created. Hence the ‘blows bubbles’ comment.

        1. Steve H.

          And Plenue, I do admit the phrasing was not of crystal clarity. Sometimes ‘the road less traveled’ turns into ‘where the hell am I?”

        2. Plenue

          “One is that he isn’t generating knowledge to be understood, he’s generating verbiage in the deconstructive manner.”

          Isn’t this basically all post-modernism amounts to?

  11. DorothyT

    Re: Millions at risk as deadly fungal infections acquire drug resistance

    This is a most important link. Thanks, Jerri-Lynn. Yves has posted some links to articles on antibacterial drug resistance, too. We should all be educating ourselves on this growing public health problem. It’s going to be the great equalizer between rich and poor.

    1. Jeremy Grimm

      I feel most disquieted by this link and several past links and posts describing the growing ineffectiveness of antibiotics.

      I was further disturbed by the link to the article on the multi-part virus from the other day. I downloaded the pdf source paper and was surprised to discover from a scan of that paper that multi-part viruses were reasonably well-known in the families of plant and insect viruses. The reported discovery of a first multi-part virus affecting higher animals came about as a side benefit from a series of studies of viruses carried by and affecting mosquitoes. However the paper made very little effort to explain or speculate on what advantage might accrue to a multi-part virus,

      A few possible advantages started to occur to me. I also wondered whether cyber-analogues might exist or be created. They would allow an attacker to sneak in small pieces over time configuring a platform to trigger with a small piece — or several different small pieces later on. A modular approach like that might be difficult to detect and difficult to trace. One could design an attack which only took form when a certain combination of programs were running on a processor.

    2. optimader

      It’s going to be the great equalizer between rich and poor.
      The great equalizer is Silver!
      Silver makes antibiotics thousands of times more effective
      Ancient antimicrobial treatment could help to solve modern bacterial resistance.

      Silver may help in the fight against drug-resistant bacteria such as Stenotrophomonas maltophilia by easing large antibiotic molecules through the microbes’ outer coating.

      Like werewolves and vampires, bacteria have a weakness: silver. The precious metal has been used to fight infection for thousands of years — Hippocrates first described its antimicrobial properties in 400 bc — but how it works has been a mystery. Now, a team led by James Collins, a biomedical engineer at Boston University in Massachusetts, has described how silver can disrupt bacteria, and shown that the ancient treatment could help to deal with the thoroughly modern scourge of antibiotic resistance. The work is published today in Science Translational Medicine1……
      I was treated for a MRSA infection w/this…VERY effective

    1. Ivy

      The New York Times exhibits so much faux gravitas that they seem to think that they control some of the space-time continuum.

        1. polecat

          perhaps, if we’re lucky….one of those CERN experiments will inadvertently create a mini black hole, that will migrate to the NYT….and wisk it off to some other point in the multiverse…and, as a plus, taking stellar gas bags such as Krugman, Friedman, and their ilk with it…

    2. Benedict@Large

      Parry made the same point I noticed when I first read the op-ed. Where in Hell did they get their information on Ukraine?

      Then I remembered. They got it from the new York Times.

  12. EndOfTheWorld

    RE: Rodrigo Duterte’s reign of terror in the Philippines. What the hell is going on over there? It’s one thing to be “tough on drugs”, it’s quite another to just mow down a lot of people in cold blood. I know the Filipinos elected Duterte in a landslide, but this killing is a little scary. Is it known beyond a shadow of a doubt that all these dead people were drug pushers? Wait a minute—-is the penalty for drug pushing, assuming a trial and conviction, death?

    I spend a lot of time in the Philippines. Great weather, very nice people. I was initially happy when Duterte Harry got elected because I heard he eliminated cigarette smoking in his city, Davao. Which is a good idea—I’d like to see tobacco smoking eliminated world-wide. But I think he might be going to far with these killings. I’m scared I might get gunned down myself just because somebody dislikes me!

    1. Antifa

      Note that Duterte has said five police generals are top drug kingpins, yet they are neither dead nor booted from their jobs. He is instead going after street corner drug sellers with hired assassins. This is a rather wild but identifiable variation on the “broken windows” method of policing, minus any brakes, any moral restraint.

      He has also announced a similar “kill ’em all and let God sort it out” approach to Muslim separatists in the country.

      What Duterte ignores, quite purposefully, is that for every drug seller killed, there are a dozen ready to take over their street corner immediately. They have families to feed, and Duterte is not providing them another means of doing that, so they sell what sells on the street.

      If he keeps running a government by thugs, he will end up just another body on the pavement.

      1. Alex morfesis

        Guessing you have never spent any real time running through sewers trying to get someone to step back from the darkness…there are no hollywood “drug dealers” who sell because of lack of jobs or as a business…no “drug dealer” would pass a drug test…they are all junkies trying to prevent having to rent out their private parts or robbing someone to pay for their next mini vacation…

        not to for a split second suggest there is anything the marcos cronies front man duterte is doing is of any value or marginally acceptable…

        but drug dealing is not some closet racist nonsense presented by the geek-o-nomix clowns in the badlands of chicago usa, down the road from the home of prez baruch “mayflower” $weethome al-obama…

        Talking past the issue by suggesting it is an “alternative” works program is just babble presented by safe house homeez named shaun who make it safe to hate…

        1. Antifa

          What a wonderful word salad! The secret sauce of sewer essence, disdain, dismissal, stewed anger, and black hatred of Obama and Chicago economists expresses your soul explicitly.

          Nonetheless, illegal drugs is a consumer business from top to bottom, whether you are selling your private parts, stealing from others, or bribing the Feds. Each transaction is an economic event at its core.

          1. Alex morfesis

            Hmm…?? Poking fun at the prez is different than hate…i am sure michelle obama and val jarret did not “love me” & my wrestling with city hall but I doubt they would argue I hate the prez…

            and laughing at a specific chicago based economist who makes and draws conclusions of “neighborhoods” I walked thru and knew and fought for and dealt with to be made into a cartoon sketch of how “life in the hood bee…”

            Drug dealing is much much closer to a dead end mlm company than real commerce…hollywood is not reality…

            and “$cientific $tudies” made from 30 thousand feet by those with the “proper credentials” is not going to change what is…

            1. Ralph Reed

              The economic reductionist slumming really struck me this week when reading all the articles about ramen noodles having replaced cigarettes as the new currency in prisons after prohibition of cigarettes. I was in Jessup Maryland minimum as the state removed cigarettes from the commissary in June 2000 and it’s a totally separate issue as commissary products had grey market value determined by local, current price-points and were interchangeable regardless of personal demand, unlike black market commodities or stamps, which adds another layer of complexity to analyzing prison finances, to say nothing of localized variances and change.

              The theme and content of these articles concerns me as it seems directed, somewhat at the types of people who like Naked Capitalism and I think the CIA came up with this propaganda line rather than the seemingly more valid rationale of media economics, click bait.

              I’d like to return to this after reading them all closely and get back here.

    2. Eureka Springs

      Duterte probably thought to himself one day early on – I’d like to see drug use eliminated country wide.

      1. EndOfTheWorld

        Tobacco smoking is actually more harmful to the innocent bystander than drug usage. Bypass smoke, you’re clothes stink, YOU stink, etc.

        1. Eureka Springs

          Straw man. My point was not to defend drugs or tobacco.. although now that it is mentioned in that way I do think both should be legal, cleanly produced and readilly avalable. My point was humans who desire to control others to the extreme of deciding some “thing” should be eliminated oft gives that same kind of thought/person the excuse to eliminate a lot of people.

  13. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Three-day weekends.

    So, we minimize religious biases (towards major religions), it should not be Friday, Saturday and Sunday, but something like Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

    Anyone wanting to take a Sunday off will do so by making a salary sacrifice (a merit perhaps), just like anyone in many religious groups today.

    The other point to remind ourselves is that a week is always 7 days (perhaps biblical in origin, or not), and not say, 11 days (it is not progress to work 8 out of 11 days, from the current 5 out of 7 days) should we go to a 3 day weekend. Don’t let them shortchange us by messing around with the definition of what a week is.

    1. efschumacher

      Well they already steal one extra day out of every four years for nothing, particularly if you are paid monthly not weekly.

      I believe the need to keep people doing increasingly bullsh*t jobs to fill their time and keep them exhausted is to prevent any possibility of a significant plurality having an extra day or so to practise political engagement. Wouldn’t it be nice to have 20% available for each M-F “work” day, to lobby their local planning department or council chamber or Congress or “Free Trade” purveyor?

      1. polecat

        we’re idly working to can pasta sauce during the holiday weekend…BIG JOB….and guaranteed to taste delicious! ;’]

        1. Carla

          It’s pesto season. I make a big bowl and freeze it in small containers for a taste of summer in the dead of winter. Wonderful in deviled eggs, mixed with good mayo as a sauce for baked or poached salmon, and of course on pasta and pizza.

        1. jrs

          It is likely to be as mandatory as work is now (of course if one doesn’t like a job guarantee job, they can get another job I suppose, but job they must). That’s only not mandatory to a libertarian, but to the rest of us is mandatory by any non-obfuscated meaning of the word.

          So lets at least aim a little higher and get that 3 day weekend or 30 hour week etc. for those job guaranteed jobs. Reduce the amount of mandatory labor and give people back their lives. Make private industry compete with THAT if they wish to hire! I doubt the amount of of socially necessary labor exceeds 30 hours or 4 day weeks (although it is poorly distributed), in fact I very strongly suspect 20 hours of everyone who is able may be more than enough for anything socially necessary. 30 at least allows a life outside work, but we might consider 20 hour weeks. Yea most work now is unnecessary, but what can anyone really expect out of a dressed-up system of domination.

    1. Jeremy Grimm

      “In Praise of Idleness” is one of my most favorite essays. It comes to mind every time there is discussion of unemployment and guaranteed employment. If our machines could do most of the work that needs to be done [“our” and “could” require qualification since we have so few machines working here and their possession is only “ours” on paper and through green paper.] Right after Russell’s essay I recall John Adams quip “I must study politics and war that my sons may have liberty to study mathematics and philosophy.” Next I recall Keynes worries over how the next generation will handle the great leisure he expected it might enjoy and have to deal with.

      1. jrs

        The Abolition of Work by Bob Black is also awesome.

        Though if we can’t have the abolition of work, let’s reduce it to what is actually necessary (not as much as we are working). Every weekend a 3 day weekend.

  14. Pat

    For the guillotine watch:

    Sure it is only a reusable bag and some toothpaste, perfume, maybe a brush, but considering other passengers are now paying for packages of peanuts, well. Although I suppose they should get something for the outrageous fares besides enough space to lay down completely and not rub elbows with fellow passengers. Not.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Save the bag, toothpaste and perfume for another day. One doesn’t know when one will need them.

    1. Anne

      This isn’t, as you know, about saving Obamacare – it’s about perpetuating Obama’s legacy and making sure the insurance companies maintain their death grip on obscene profits. The LAST thing this is about is making sure people have actual care.

      It is killing me that people who support Clinton are so willing to close their eyes to this truth. I’ve started telling people, “by all means, support Clinton if that’s who you really want to see in office, but at least be honest about what she represents, and what she’s likely to bring to the table. If, with all that, you still think she is the best choice, go for it – but please stop kidding yourself that she’s some kind of liberal icon when what she really is is the Republican the GOP wishes was their nominee.”

      That doesn’t work, either, lol, but I feel an obligation to say it anyway!

      1. Pat

        I like it and may steal it.

        I honestly believe that people buy this from Clinton because otherwise they would have to admit that they were taken in by Obama about this flaming mountain of manure. Oh, they close their eyes to the truth about Clinton for many other reasons (the corruption, the lies, the war mongering), but on this one the big delusion is about Obama. There is going to come a point when a large portion of America finally hears and recognizes that he was a huge mistake and a terrible President because he was a terrible, not just because Republicans actually have a backbone and obstruct, even as Clinton does her best to make him look good by comparison.

      2. clarky90

        Obama has been honored with The Nobel Peace Prize. I propose that he also be awarded The Nobel Prize in Economics. This will ensure that his legacy lives on into posterity!

    1. diptherio

      Even Noah can only go so far with Friedman’s big ideas. A C+ is hardly, something to crow about, even in macro. But since I’m hypersensitive to class bigotry, this is what stuck out to me most:

      One one level, it’s pretty obvious that there’s some floor to unemployment – there will always be people between jobs, and people who don’t want to work but who claim they do.

      Yup, the unemployed are lazy liars…or just between jobs. Excuse me while I go hit the heavy bag for a couple of minutes….

      1. Skippy

        When someone uses the nomenclature – Natural [Nature] – you should be feeling the pin prick of the cortex injection needle to the back of your head.

        Disheveled Marsupial…. Anywho I take Noah with a health does of salt from his comfy perch….

        1. optimader

          Or advertising Organic fruits and vegetables! Indeed, show me to the inorganic produce isle please!

    2. Benedict@Large

      Modern economics is all about defining unemployment out of existence. There are apparently endless reasons for people to not be working, but unemployment is not one of them.

  15. Jim Haygood

    Till now, I regarded every word published at Breitbart as objective, received Truth. But now that the NYT has baptized Breitbart as an “important voice,” the scales have fallen from my eyes, and I’ve realized that a lot of it probably is just slanted, partisan hyperbole — a mirror image of the Old Grey Meretrix herself.

    Nevertheless, after careful vetting, this Breitbart report about Trump campaigning in Iowa appears to be factual:

    Trump said that the former secretary of state will raise taxes substantially, which will impact family farms. In Iowa, 97 percent of the farms are family-owned, according to the Iowa Farm Bureau website. “She will sell you out,” [Trump] added.

    To which a commenter acidly replied, “Correction: she has ALREADY sold you out.”

    Sounds legit. At a party I attended yesterday, one guest lamely joked to a female guest that he would “vote for you over Hillary.” The groans and grimaces which followed indicated a unanimous consensus among the dozen people present that being gratuitously compared to Hillary Clinton is not merely a backhanded compliment; it’s a gross insult.

      1. Pat

        Or Correct the Record needs to increase its budget so it has representation at every party in the nation for the next few months.

    1. clarky90

      Full Speech: Donald Trump Speaks at ‘Roast and Ride’ Event in Des Moines, IA 8/27/16

      Trump promises employment, good wages, rebuilt inner cities and safe neighborhoods to African American citizens. (The Iowa crowd applauds furiously) He talks extensively about de-fanging the special interest groups.

      Trump imagines a nation, ruled by laws that are enforced equally. (Lady Justice, the Roman Goddess of Justice)

      “Her attributes are a blindfold, a balance and a sword.”

  16. flora

    Bill Moyers and Mike Lofgren discuss the deep state. From a few years ago. Still relevant.

    Moyers: “…America’s own deep state, where elected and unelected figures collude to protect and serve powerful vested interests.”

    Lofgren: “This is not some cabal that was hatched in the dark of night. This is something that hides in plain sight. … . It is a hybrid of corporate America and the national security state.”
    Lofgren: “Everyone knows Wall St. and its depredations. Everyone knows how corporate America acts. They’re both about the same thing. They’re both about money, sucking as much money out of the country as they can. And they’re about control – corporate control and political control.”

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Perhaps the torturing of would-be buyers who have held back prudently might end, rather than the elites markets crashing.

    2. meeps

      Alas, allan, I’ll be waiting for the prices in Aspen to fall farther below 10 million before I place a bid. That mouse’s repertoire will suffice for entertainment until then, though. Thanks!

  17. allan

    Correct the Record trolls do it for money.
    @Peter Daou does it for love:

    Make no mistake: the media’s obsession with forcing a #Hillary press conference

    Words fail.

    1. Lambert Strether

      These people have lost their damn minds. Or else, I dunno, saying crazy pants stuff for money, maybe they’re totally sane.

      Makes me think that this election is like “Standup Comedy in Hell.” None of the jokes are funny, the audience can’t boo the comedians off the stage, and the exit doors are nailed shut.

      1. Pat

        One of the few dissents I found on the twitter feed for the comment made the observation that everything is about her gender because they have nothing else.

        (Oh, btw did you know that Hillary didn’t vote for the Iraq war because they are divorcing AUMF from the actual invasion. Oh, I get how they get there, but it is like another side of the prism that fails to recognize that selling access IS corruption.)

    2. Pat

      Even worse are the responses. Some people try to call him on the victimization tactic, but most of what I saw are high fives.

  18. Jim Haygood

    A haunting souvenir from J-Yel’s Junket @ J-hole:

    In a lunch address by Princeton University economist Christopher Sims, policymakers were told that it may take a massive program, large enough even to shock taxpayers into a different, inflationary view of the future.

    “Fiscal expansion can replace ineffective monetary policy at the zero lower bound,” Sims said. “It requires deficits aimed at, and conditioned on, generating inflation. The deficits must be seen as financed by future inflation, not future taxes or spending cuts.

    It was not clear whether such ideas will catch on. But there was a broad sense here that the other side of government may need to up its game.

    In a faraway galaxy called the Seventies, Sims’ advice would have been anathema. But that was before the Great Moderation paved the way to the alternate universe of ZIRP and NIRP.

    While nearly no one can imagine an inflationary future arising from the present lull, the fact remains that inflation is the only “soft default” option available for governments that can’t possibly redeem the social promises they’ve made.

    Got gold?

    1. fresno dan

      Jim Haygood
      August 28, 2016 at 11:12 am

      So, if the prices not only of college, health care, food, housing, etcetera had gone up, while wages are stagnant, we would all be on that big rock candy mountain (they must be using “rock candy” to mean that rock cocaine….)

      Sooooo….the FED thinks the epipen price increases are a good thing?
      Or do they have an algorithm that distinguishes good inflation from evil gouging???

    2. Benedict@Large

      This is stupid.

      Any time anyone suggests doing anything besides pushing on a string, the whole chorus jumps up and sings “Inflation!” These people know as much about inflation as a two-year old knows about nuclear physics.

    3. ewmayer

      Wolf Richter on all the yellin’ goin’ on at J-Hole – his take is that NIRP is a nonstarter with the FedHeads, but that in fact they are committed to continuing/strengthening their financial-repression strategy of the past 8 years, in the form of near-zero nominal but significantly negative real interest rates:

      The 11 Bone-Chilling Things I Gleaned from Yellen’s Chart | Wolf Street

  19. JoMo

    On the redevelopment of those old olf courses. Many are toxic brownfields from the herbicides used to control weeds. An old article from the St Augustine FL Record:

    ST. AUGUSTINE – The City Commission decided Monday to allow a developer to receive a tax break through a state program for cleaning the contaminated former Ponce de Leon Resort and golf course.The commission voted 3-2 after nearly two hours of discussion and public comment. Commissioners Errol Jones, Don Crichlow and Joe Boles voted for the site to be part of the state program. Commissioner Susan Burk and Mayor George Gardner dissented.

    The Florida Department of Environmental Protection offers the Brownfield program as an incentive to redevelop contaminated sites. The program includes tax benefits for the property owner. About six people spoke against the project, with an equal amount speaking for it. Each person who spoke in opposition also said they were against the development entirely because it closed down a historic Donald Ross golf course. Ross was the architect of more than 400 golf courses in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The Ponce course opened in 1916. Some of these people have fought the development since the golf course closed in 2003.

    “The citizens have spoken repeatedly on this and we have been ignored,” said Kris Shriner. “Those of us who care about St. Augustine … are stunned [the developer] is asking for tax money to bail out his bad project.”

    Jones said, “my intelligence has been insulted” from the off-base public comments.

    “Most of what’s been said the last hour and a half has been off the point. The golf course is gone forever,” Jones said.

    “We are only here to say if they do or don’t qualify for tax credits.”

    Crichlow agreed and said “this reeks of vindication to me.”

    The former Ponce site on U.S. 1, north of the city, covers 419 acres of which 284 acres are contaminated with arsenic used for weed control on the Ponce golf course. The developer, Stokes & Co., plans to build a 749-home project called Madeira on the property. Attorney Dan Richardson, representing the developer, asked the commission Monday to designate the former Ponce property a brownfield site. To qualify for the program, the developer had to gain approval from the city.”

    Yep, that’s our city backing us up. Did they build any firehouses, schools, playgrounds and ice cream stands? I think not. The taxpayer bailed the developer out. YOUR tax dollars at work, preserving YOUR quality of life.

    On an aside note: Were the home buyers made aware that they were buying their luxury homes on a former toxic waste site, or did they invoke the “don’t ask don’t tell” policy?

  20. Pat

    I just saw Clinton’s “One Wrong Move” ad. It isn’t the daisy ad, but I think we now have this year’s 3 am ad.

    1. Arizona Slim

      Fun fact about that 3 am ad from the 2008 primary: The Clinton campaign used stock footage of a sleeping child.


      By the time the ad aired, that child was a teenager. And she supported Obama.

  21. OIFVet

    Breaking news!!! Score one more neocon for Hillary: Wolfowitz Leans Clinton! The exclamation ain’t mine, it’s the front page title of the article, which I suppose is meant to get liberuls to pop the corks and celebrate. But the really good part of the article is the editor’s note at the end: “Editor’s note: Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist and birther who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims — 1.6 billion members of an entire religion — from entering the U.S.” I see your hatemonger and raise you a warmonger…

    1. Skip Intro

      “Editor’s note: Donald Trump regularly incites political violence and is a serial liar, rampant xenophobe, racist, misogynist and birther who has repeatedly pledged to ban all Muslims — 1.6 billion members of an entire religion — from entering the U.S.”

      But despite that, Wolfowitz is still considering Clinton.

    1. Robert Hahl

      A 1992 lecture by John Kenneth Galbraith about his book, The Culture of Contentment, in which he foresaw everything we talk about today, including that the Democrats would stop representing the working class in order to compete for the money which was then going mostly to Republicans.

      Book Discussion on The Culture of Contentment

  22. Jeremy Grimm

    Regarding “Improving Global Food Security” with Evaptainers — I’ve seen several other neat devices invented and capitalized to help the poor of the world — the iron fish to use in cooking, the OXFAM water bucket with a built in filter and now the Evaptainer. All these items are “inexpensive” in terms of our economy and relatively expensive for the supposedly intended market. I wonder whether the real intended market isn’t charity givers and charity organizations in this country. I am not opposed to charity givers or charity giving organizations in principle. However wouldn’t it be more help to the poor in Morocco — for example — if rather than buying and handing out several hundred or thousand Evaptainers the inventors might adapt the design to the materials available in Morocco and show how to make Evaptainers from those local materials. Show people how to make the Evaptainers using the local materials and adapted designs and also explain the principles of the design to enable local inventors to make improved designs based on those principles and their knowledge of the local people, culture, and available tools and materials. I suppose this is a variant form of showing people how to fish instead of giving them fish. I also believe sharing knowledge is greater form of respect than assuming we have all the answers from our advanced technologies. There are many things we can learn from old ways and different thinking in return for sharing our technologies and watching their evolutions.

      1. Jeremy Grimm

        Thank you for the links. Actually the design they point to is mentioned in the first paragraph of the MIT link: “People have used evaporative cooling for food preservation for millennia: it’s as simple as nesting two terra-cotta pots, filling the space in between with sand, and adding water.”

        I guess I should expand my comment a little. I have seen many links like the MIT link which improve upon old designs with new manufactured materials to create “inexpensive” [in our economy] devices for supposed application in some undeveloped region of a place like Morocco — the country mentioned in the MIT link. Many of these neat devices are much too expensive for the stated target market and the manufactured designs, like the MIT design, damage employment for people like the local potters who make the clay pots used in the old design. However as you suggest the MIT design marketed here might be able to compete with the camping fridges sold here which depend on ice for their cooling. — And something is a little strange between your first link and the MIT sentence I pulled from the first paragraph. Why did Mohammed Bah Abba get all the awards mentioned in your link if the design is so old? You link seems to indicate that though ancient the design had been “forgotten” and now “remembered” and produced by Mohammed Bah Abba. How many other such things have been or are being “forgotten” — things which we might need again.

        1. Waldenpond

          The plastic could be considered an improvement in weight over clay for transporting goods to market, but the cost will never be comparable…. depending on where they are produced, the clay pot sets sell for under $2. But you’ll be glad to know, they won’t be paying for them.

          I just read the evaptainer site. They received money from Nat Geographic and USAID! They travel to startup competitions with Google. They checked in with a family using a prototype. The food last 10 days instead of 6 and the father spends less time getting food and is now freed up to labor more hours and his productivity has gone up!

          It looks like Westerners trying to squeeze out local manufacturers.

  23. JC40

    re 12:07, forced a bank holiday, right. That’s precisely the sort of duress, threat of ‘intentional infliction of conditions of life, inter alia the deprivation of access to food and medicine,’ that would serve to invalidate an austerity agreement by application of VCLT Part V provisions. If Greece had no choice but to sign, there was no legal agreement. Suspend the unacceptable provisions and take it to the ICJ. To escalate it further, claim Greece’s ICESCR commitments invalidate conflicting EC directives.

    It was the perfect test case for resistance to coercive neoliberal intervention. That the Greek government didn’t try it I attribute to the US academic indoctrination of key ministerial staff.

    1. Yves Smith

      You keep failing to understand the power dynamics. Greece needed another bailout for its economy to function. That means its creditors can dictate terms. Greece got a taste of what no creditor support looked like.

      And when you join the Eurozone, member states explicitly cede certain aspects of their national sovereignity, such as how large a budget deficit they can incur. They also explicitly state that that the Eurozone is accountable only to itself. So Greece already gave up any right of appeal when it joined the Eurozone.

      Now eventually Germany’s pig-headedness about not permitting principal writedowns and trying to force member states to squeeze labor will blow up the entire Eurozone. But they are in the position to call the shots and do a lot of damage to citizens of member states who had no say in how things got where they are now. But the idea that Greece was going to get its way or that any outside party could overturn want was done is spurious.

  24. Kim Kaufman

    Two pieces on Bernie’s Revolution a couple of days old but I don’t think I’ve seen on NC:

    The Revolution Is Not in Bernie’s Hands

    As Sarah Jaffe’s new chronicle of American protest culture shows, change is happening—but it’s coming from below.

    By David Dayen
    August 26, 2016

    August 26, 2016
    Sanders Launch of ‘Our Revolution’ a Step Forward and a Step Backwards

    Norman Solomon, coordinator of The Bernie Delegates Network, says the overall structure and objectives of ‘Our Revolution’ are encouraging, but Sanders retreated from positions he took towards the end of his presidential campaign by not addressing U.S. foreign policy and wars

  25. Kim Kaufman

    New book: Obama’s Education Department and Gates Foundation were closer than you thought
    By Valerie Strauss August 25

    “Indeed, the involvement of foundations in corporate school reform — which, broadly, has been an attempt to change public education to operate like a private business rather than as a civic institution — has been unprecedented in the history of American public education. Tompkins-Stange wrote: “Arguably, no social sector in the United States is more heavily impacted by foundations than K-12 education.””

    1. Benedict@Large

      For years as I worked on the very real election fraud issue, the Democrats would nod, but you could tell they just weren’t into it. This seemed strange, considering it was obvious that the Democrats were being seriously hurt by GOP fraud tactics, until I thought, what if the Democrats are simply laying low until it’s their turn to do some hacking? Tin foil hat, but then Hillary’s Invaders took to the polls, and simultaneously trash fifty different state elections.

      Anyways, now when I hear about the GOP and election fraud, I say, “Bring it on!” The Democrats deserve getting this stuff smashed in their faces (like they did to me.) In fact, it would be pure poetry if the master of election fraud, Hillary Clinton, lost her own election, as the GOP one-up’d her at her own game. Like they innocently said when 20,000 e-mails revealed the extent of their fraud, “Oh, that stuff? That stuff happens in every election.”

    1. meeps

      UPDATE: Stein later appeared in Denver, where she addressed the ColoradoCare ballot measure to a crowd at the beginning of a speech.
      “It’s so awesome to be here in Colorado where you are leading the charge in so many ways starting with marijuana legalization … and now on this Amendment 69 you are moving us forward … and by the way Amendment 69 shows why we also need improved Medicare for all at the national level,” Stein said. “Because we need the enabling legislation at the national level in order to make it possible to really have the streamlined merger into a single-payer system. Ultimately that’s where we want to go, but measure 69 gets us started and that’s critical. Thank you for leading the way.”
      She also called for an improved Medicare-for-all system at the national level, adding, “We support what Colorado is doing with Amendment 69 to get us along that pathway.”

      I think Stein is correct to reiterate that the ultimate goal is still a national, single payer system; Improved Medicare For All. ColoradoCare organizers have no misgivings about that. Unfortunately, NARAL’s factional alignment with ProgressNow scares women (unnecessarily, IMO. I’ve not yet seen a legal argument that ColoradoCare poses new threats to women that they aren’t faced with under the ACA). Stein’s final statement reads like an endorsement to me.

  26. rich

    Muscle-bound millionaire of addiction treatment under scrutiny

    By Christine Stapleton – Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

    Saturday, Aug. 27, 2016

    Expensive cars. Flashy watches. Strip clubs. Casinos. Tattoos. Selfies of ripped biceps and b-boy stances.

    This is the lifestyle of Eric Snyder, one of a breed of 20-something addicts who came to Florida to get clean and ended up making fortunes by housing and treating fellow addicts and testing their urine.

    Armed with little more than GEDs, a year or two of sobriety and no formal training in substance abuse, they assume responsibility for housing and treating other millennials with addiction — the No. 1 killer of their generation.

    Two years ago, Snyder, 29, caught the attention of a federal task force investigating hundreds of millions of dollars worth of insurance fraud, kickbacks and patient brokering in Palm Beach County’s drug treatment industry. Snyder landed in headlines when his Delray Beach businesses were raided by the FBI in December 2014 — the second of two high-profile raids by the task force.

    Although no charges have been filed against Snyder, grand jury subpoenas went out in December, state investigative records obtained by The Palm Beach Post show.

    Three former employees say Snyder’s treatment program staff forged medical records to collect on insurance money, investigative files and legal documents show. A doctor in a recent deposition said much the same thing: His license was used to order urine drug screens without his permission.

    How much did Snyder make over the years? More than $50 million, one source close to the investigation said.

    The urine of drug addicts with insurance is worth millions of dollars to the operators of labs, sober homes and intensive outpatient programs, such as those Snyder operated. Addicts with good insurance are so prized that the feds have dubbed their investigation Operation Thoroughbred, The Post has learned.

    Insurance companies often are billed as much as $5,000 for a single urine drug screen. Although insurers pay a fraction of that — between $1,500 and $2,000 — with addicts tested three or more times a week, the profits add up fast.

  27. Plenue

    “The World’s Biggest Marine Refuge: 442,000 Square Miles, 7,000 Species, 5 Sunken Aircraft Carriers”

    Hey, Obama did something not horrific for once. So what’s the catch? Will it turn out to be something like no increased funding for managing the refuge, effectively rendering the move useless? I bet it’ll be along those lines; yet another in a long line of Obama moves that are all style, no substance. The man runs on pure propaganda.

  28. Pat

    I realize it can be a marketing ploy but today I got the second mass email from the Democrats about not meeting their fundraising goals. The first was about numbers of donors by last Thursday, today’s from “Tim Kaine” is about money not individual donors. And I quote:

    I don’t want to wake up on November 9th and feel like we didn’t give it our all.

    But right now, we’re not hitting our goals, and that needs to change. Quickly. If we don’t outraise Trump and the GOP this month — before the fundraising deadline on August 31st — the public donor report published by the Federal Election Commission will show that his team is stronger than ours.

    And they’ll start September even more confident they can beat us.

    If this election was not so sad, it would be almost amusing. All about team pride and appearance, their begging for people to donate $3.00 would be pathetic even if the news of the last week hadn’t been about Clinton spending more time hobnobbing with the rich and famous in order to rake in donations from people who probably shouldn’t be donating to her again (see the Hillary Victory Fund news) than actually courting voters.
    But then I have to remind myself team Clinton doesn’t think they need to do that, they just have to wave their scary Trump piñata from a distance and all those sweaty, untidy, not rich or important working folk’s votes are hers.

    1. Jerri-Lynn Scofield Post author

      I got that email too and also found it sad. I have no intention of contributing anything to electing HRC, but wonder whether this go-team rhetoric actually convinces anyone so inclined to fork over some dosh. That bogus rah-rah team stuff reminds me of the w/ends lost when I was a derivatives trader to attending dreadful corporate off-sites to encourage team-building. (When all I wanted to do was catch up on sleep lost during the frenetic workweek.)

      1. Pat

        I’m also reminded of the faux Unity that was almost as big a theme of the Convention as America’s military and needs Hillary to keep America exceptional! It was also reeked of corporate team marketing.

        One way to look at it is that tribalism may be all they really have to offer most Democrats.

        1. Jerri-Lynn Scofield Post author

          I don’t think I was alone in hating those corporate team-building exercises (e.g., look at the popularity of Dilbert). So I wonder whether these efforts to mimic such exercises actually just turn people off. After all, you may not be able to get out of going to your company’s off-site weekend event. But you don’t have to send money to campaigns that go in for similar BS.

    2. Lambert Strether

      I believe that $3.00 is the minimum figure for those who have not given. If you do give, they ratchet the figure up in the next mail, and then up again, and so on.

      So, well done on the $3.00.

      It’s a shame we can’t send email back with a brick in it, the way we can surface mailings.

  29. Jay M

    It’s tough being a president
    it’s tough thinking the big thoughts (now which club do you think is appropriate)
    It’s tough flashing the jewelry constantly, f22 the diamonds keep falling out
    you know?
    don’t be stupid

    1. Andrew Watts

      So, why is everybody indulging in two minutes of hate when they could be petitioning the Department of Justice to file anti-trust charges? Just kidding! While everybody is focused on their outrage and the political campaigns the rule of law takes a beating for monopolistic profit.

      The US is a burgeoning dystopia. A politically incompetent one at that.

  30. Tim


    Good News From Germany.

    The vice-Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel, has declared the TTIP negotiations as irrecoverably stuck “

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