2:00PM Water Cooler 10/13/2016

By Lambert Strether of Corrente.


“John Kasich: Refusing to ratify TPP risks America’s role as the world leader” [WaPo]. “In the event of our inaction and loss of resolve, the United States will surrender global leadership to our most aggressive rivals, dictators who have the most to gain: Vladimir Putin, Russia’s latter-day Stalin; and Xi Jinping, the most repressive Communist Chinese leader since Mao Zedong.” Nutso. In a tripolar world, you play the other two poles off against each other. You don’t attack both of them.


Our Famously Free Press

“Swat Team: The media’s extermination of Bernie Sanders, and real reform” [Thomas Frank, Harpers]. Go read it, because Harpers and Frank should have the hits. Because I’m pressed temporally, I’ll supply this summary [New York Post]. 

Frank went through every one of hundreds of opinion pieces published in the Washington Post on Sanders and Hillary Clinton, his rival for the Democratic nomination for president, during primary season, from January to May 2016, and found a stark disparity in coverage. Sanders pieces took a negative tone by a ratio of 5 to 1, whereas opinion pieces on Clinton were about evenly split between favorable and unfavorable.

UPDATE “New WikiLeaks emails show influence of Univision chairman in Clinton campaign” [Miami Herald]. “‘She needs to differentiate herself from Obama on Israel,’ Saban wrote to top campaign officials on June 20, 2015.”


“Bridgegate official misconduct complaint against Christie can move forward” [Star-Ledger].

UPDATE “In Haiti, a Factory Where Big Money, State Department and the Clintons Meet” [ABC].

But the garment factory has underdelivered on projected jobs. Haitian workers have accused managers of bullying and sexual harassment. And an ABC News investigation has found that after opening its factory in the Haitian industrial park — built with $400 million of global aid — the Korean firm became a Clinton Foundation donor and its owner invested in a startup company owned by Hillary Clinton’s former chief of staff.

How cozy!

UPDATE “Donald Trump Is Accusing the Clintons of Cashing In on Haiti’s 2010 Earthquake” [Fortune]. Should have been done long ago.

UPDATE “WikiLeaks emails reveal Bill Clinton’s $1M ‘birthday’ present from Qatar” [Washington Times].

“[Qatar] would like to see WJC ‘for five minutes’ in NYC, to present $1 million check that Qatar promised for WJC’s birthday in 2011,” an employee at The Clinton Foundation said to numerous aides, including Doug Brand [isc]. “Qatar would welcome our suggestions for investments in Haiti — particularly on education and health. They have allocated most of their $20 million but are happy to consider projects we suggest. I’m collecting input from CF Haiti team.”

No doubt! The Clintons sure were working the Haiti angle any way that they could. I wonder how that’s playing in Florida?


“[A]lmost half of the S&P 500 disclose, or restrict to non-election purposes, their payments to trade associations, and almost a third disclose or restrict payments to 501(c)(4) social welfare organizations” [The Harvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance and Financial Regulation]. The 2016 CPA-Zicklin Index of Corporate Political Disclosure….

The Voters

UPDATE “Trump’s path to the presidency now hinges on these four states” [McClatchy]. “Trump is essentially focused on four states: North Carolina, Florida, Ohio and Pennsylvania. Based of RealClearPolitics’ electoral map, that means Trump will almost certainly need to win all four in order to reach 270 electoral votes. According to the latest polls, he trails Clinton in all four of those states, though often within the margin of error.”

UPDATE “Over 500,000 Votes Have Already Been Cast in 2016 Presidential Election” [NBC]. “In the seven battleground states below [four of which are listed above]–where campaigns are especially focused on mobilizing voters– 330,980 early votes have now been cast.” Hmm. The Democrats were encouraging early voting, IIRC.

Wisconsin: “Trump needs more Republican voters, particularly in Waukesha County, a heavily Republican suburb just west of Milwaukee. Waukesha delivered 161,567 votes to Mitt Romney in 2012, a 35-point margin of victory over Obama. Trump isn’t anywhere near that right now” [RealClearPolitics]. Recall we awarded WI to Trump in last week’s path to victory exercise, based on institutional factors. Meanwhile: “‘Clinton is getting about 55 percent in Dane County,’ said [Charles Franklin, professor of law and public policy and director of the Marquette Law School Poll], ‘and she should be getting 65 to 70 percent. So that’s the effect of young people who are not attracted to her, or who are pining away for Sanders or gravitating to [Gary] Johnson and, to a lesser extent, [Jill] Stein.”

Ohio: “How Republican Rob Portman May Derail the Trump Train in Ohio” [Bloomberg]. “Portman had long ago quietly placed a bet against his party’s presidential prospects. Over the past year and a half, he has assiduously assembled an organization that would keep him from being reliant on the Ohio Republican Party, the Republican National Committee, or its presidential nominee to identify and mobilize his supporters. As a result he finds himself today with a broader coalition, often motivated by local issues, and much less dependent on Trump’s supporters—and on the RNC’s largesse—than other Republican senators on the ballot this season. Portman had quietly grown so self-sufficient that, in an inversion of the natural order, by the time he rescinded his support, he already controlled Trump’s fate.” Sounds to me like the left could learn from this.

“Technocratic for the people: What Hillary Clinton gets wrong about Bernie Sanders’ political revolution” [Conor Lynch, Salon]. “But what exactly has modern technocratic liberalism achieved? Some of the Democratic [sic] Party’s most important achievements — most notably the Affordable Care Act — are also some of the most jumbled, bureaucratic and corporate-friendly pieces of legislation in modern history… A fine example of the technocratic liberal is MIT professor and Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber, who said in 2014 that ‘Lack of transparency is a huge political advantage,’ and that ‘the stupidity of the American voter’ was critical for ACA to pass.”


“Bernie Sanders Just Asked President Obama to Halt the Dakota Access Pipeline” [Mother Jones]. Already opening up space between himself and the Democrat leadership. And not a moment too soon, either.

The Trail

“How Hillary Clinton should go in for the kill” [Ryan Cooper, The Week]. “Every Republican candidate should be walloped with the deranged nominee, every minute of every day, and every Republican base voter should be either applauding their local nominee’s support of bile and hatred, or hanging their head in despair at yet another RINO giving in to political correctness. Anything less will mean a missed chance at total control of D.C.” With great power comes great responsibility… 

“Not even Republicans who denounced Trump this weekend following the release of the catastrophic video are safe from the ads. The DCCC says it also plans to knock vulnerable candidates who withdrew support or endorsements for Trump or asked him to step aside after the video, ‘which everybody [who is anybody] is seeing as too little too late,’ the DCCC’s Kelly said” [Politico]. If Trump succeeds in making the DCCC look good… that would be quite remarkable.

“Trump has made up larger gaps in similar time periods in the past. If you look at the RCP Average, Clinton hasn’t so much surged as Trump has lost support since the beginning of the month, which suggests those voters are still gettable for him” [RealClearPolitics]. “That is because the fundamentals of this race indicate it will be close. The second-term president with middling approval ratings, the modest growth, and the historic unfavorability of the two candidates continually exert gravity on the contest downward to a tie. When Trump is ‘best behavior’ Trump, the race is competitive. When he isn’t, Clinton pulls to a lead. If Trump were to be ‘best behavior’ Trump for the remaining four weeks and conduct himself in the third debate as he did in the second, he might close the gap again. Indeed, the NBC/WSJ poll released over the weekend actually suggests Trump made up some ground in the aftermath of the debate. But I don’t think that will happen.”

“[A] simple rule is that a 90 percent or higher win probability allows Clinton to run a ‘some’ campaign and forces Trump to run an ‘and’ campaign. I’ll explain” [RealClearPolitics]. “Right now, Clinton’s lead (6.2 points in the Trump vs. Clinton RealClearPolitics average and 4.8 points when third parties are included) is safe enough that she can take some hits. If Clinton were to take some damage from newly released emails, perform well in the final debate and slightly underperform her polling, she would probably still win. Or if Clinton didn’t perform well at the final debate, endured a few bad news cycles but managed to stave off most other negative news, she would probably still have a lead heading into Election Day. I think of this as a “some” campaign because she only needs to get some things right to maintain her lead… Trump, on the other hand, would have to have an extremely good run of luck and/or series of great strategic moves to catch up to Clinton. For example, if news shifted back to a prolonged focus on Clinton’s emails and she had another health issue  and polls underestimated Trump’s support, then he might win the election. In that way, he has to run an “and” campaign.”

“‘Total Fabrication’: Trump denies multiple accusers’ abuse claims” [USA Today]. 

“Miss Washington 2013 claims Donald Trump groped her, invited her to hotel room” [McClatchy]. 

Clinton Email Hairballs

“George Carlin’s Seven Dirty Words in Podesta Emails – Discovered 981 Unindexed Documents” [Another Word For It]. Wikileaks finding aids and search functionality are less than stellar.

UPDATE “Hacked 80-page roundup of paid speeches shows Clinton ‘praising Wall Street'” [Politico]. Politico is only getting around to this now? Hmm. I wonder if the word “Sanders” appears in the story, as in “Sanders voters were right.” What do you think?

Stats Watch

Jobless Claims, week of October 8, 2016: “Unemployment claims remain at or near historic lows, indicating a lack of layoffs and quick turnaround for those who do lose their jobs” [Econoday]. Or that claims are harder to get. And: “Initial jobless claims continued to surprise to the downside, plumbing depths not seen in a very long time” [Amherst Pierpont, Across the Curve]. “Not that we should be shocked.  When the labor market gets very tight, firms do not want to lay off anyone that they suspect they might want to re-hire at some point because chances are, they will not be available when the firm tries to call them back…. here may be 3 or 4 doves on the FOMC who still believe that there is substantial slack in the labor market, but the more compelling argument in my view is that we are moving/have moved into clearly tight territory, which is why wage hikes are (finally) accelerating to a pace in excess of what productivity growth and cost-of-living adjustments would dictate.” Time to screw the workers? I mean, a better time than usual?

Import and Export Prices, September 2016: “Progress is the theme in September’s import & export price report where emerging pressures may be appearing. Import prices rose 0.1 percent in the month with export prices up 0.3 percent. And year-on-year rates are finally coming up for air, at only minus 1.1 percent for import prices which is the best showing since August 2014. The year-on-year rate for export prices is minus 1.5 percent for their best showing since October 2014” [Econoday]. And: “The month-over-month figures given in the headlines only confuse. At the current rate of moderation of deflation (trend line) – both imports and export prices should start inflating by the end of the year” [Econintersect]. 

Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index, week of October 9, 2016: “[A] tough month for the consumer comfort index which drifted in the 41 range, well down from the prior trend at 44” [Econoday]. 

Real Estate: “The U.S. industrial property market is on track for another record year in 2016, and the market could expand well into 2018 despite the possibility of higher interest rates that would increase the costs of carrying inventory, according to a leading industrial real estate and logistics firm” [DC Velocity]. “Richard H. Thompson, JLL’s international director, supply chain and logistics solutions, said demand will be powered by the dramatic growth of e-commerce and the fulfillment networks developed and expanded to support it.” Can’t we just turn the malls into warehouses?

Supply Chain: “The collapse of Hanjin Shipping has brought into sharp relief the vulnerability of intercontinental supply chains, the spectre of further bankruptcies among ocean shipping lines, and the likelihood of an acceleration of nearshoring trends” [Lloyd’s List]. 

Shipping: “Bankrupt Hanjin Shipping has redelivered the majority of its chartered-in vessels with more to follow, which is swelling the global fleet of idled containerships, according to research by Alphaliner” [Splash 247]. “These redeliveries [of 67 vessels] have caused the fleet of idle containerships of over 500 teu to surge to 371 vessels (1.33m teu total), as of October 3, Alphaliner said in its latest weekly report.”

Shipping: “For the fourth time in as many months, U.S. aviation safety regulators have proposed a fine on Amazon.com Inc.” [Wall Street Journal, “Safety Regulators Fine Amazon Again Over Hazardous Air Shipments”]. “According to the Federal Aviation Administration, in August 2015 FedEx Corp. workers at a sorting facility in Cary, Ill., discovered a leaking package that held two 14-ounce bottles of a flammable, ethanol-based hair tonic. The shipment, which was flown from Ruskin, Fla., to Algonquin, Ill., wasn’t packaged or marked properly to show it contained hazardous material, the FAA alleges, and shipping papers didn’t provide required details, including emergency response information.” Amazon’s response is priceless: “[Amazon] has developed sophisticated technologies to detect potential shipping hazards and use any defects as an opportunity for continuous improvement.” I guess when a plane falls out of the sky that will come under the heading of “continuous improvement” too?

Shipping: “Amazon.com Inc. plans to hire 20% more seasonal workers for its U.S. warehouses this holiday season as some competitors have kept hiring steady.” [Wall Street Journal, “Amazon to Add 120,000 Workers for Holidays”]. “The company said 14,000 seasonal employees were hired full time last year, and the company plans to bring on more full-time workers this year.”

Rail: “It does appear that the downward slide in the one year rolling averages will pause shortly as the rate of increase in the rate of decline is continuing to be smaller. But this movement is like watching snails race. Based on the current trends – rail year-over-year rate of contraction should start improving by year end” [Econintersect]. “Still I am grappling with what this contraction actually means as the USA economy is not being pulled into a recession.”

Rail: “[Railroad] tie production plunged 12.9 percent in July to 2.21 million units, while purchases dropped 11.8 percent to 2.2 million units from June levels, according to [the  Railway Tie Association]. Compared with July 2015 data, production fell 7.6 percent, while purchases slipped 8.4 percent” [Progressive Railroading]. 

Commodities: “One of the more eye-catching trends for tanker markets this quarter is the slowing fuel demand in China, as indicated by multiple indicators and analysts” [Lloyd’s List]. 

Political Risk: “Economists in The Wall Street Journal’s latest monthly survey of economists put the odds of the next downturn happening within the next four years at nearly 60%” [Wall Street Journal, “Economists Believe a Recession Is Likely Within Next Four Years”]. Obama decreasing the deficit should leave Clinton II holding the bag, exactly as Clinton I reducing the deficit left Bush holding the bag.

Political Risk: “Hard Brexit could turn EU to Ukraine for wheat, rather than UK” [Agrimoney]. “For both wheat, of which the EU buyers accounted for 80% of UK exports last season, and barley, for which the bloc took 63% of UK sales, the [import levies] would represent more than half the value of supplies, at 2015 prices, and would probably render such shipments ‘uneconomic’.”

Today’s Fear & Greed Index: 32, Fear (previous close: 45, Neutral) [CNN]. One week ago: 53 (Neutral). (0 is Extreme Fear; 100 is Extreme Greed). Last updated Oct 13 at 11:43am. Mr. Market finally decides he doesn’t like Clinton all that much after all? War is bad for business, after all. 

Black Injustice Tipping Point

“I Loved My Bigoted Uncle, and He Loved Us” [The Daily Beast]. “My late Uncle Buster, a barrel-chested white man raised in the woody bowels of Louisiana and a self-professed bigot, opened his life, his home and his heart to me. Wendell ‘Buster’ Carson was ours by marriage but, even as he rests in his grave, our bond remains as indelible as the etchings on his marble tombstone.” Must-read. 

“When asked by Couric how she feels about San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, and others athletes, refusing to stand for the anthem, Ginsburg replied: “I think it’s dumb and disrespectful” [ABC] 

“Meet the Ferguson activist moving the fight for justice inside the political system” [Guardian]. “[Bruce] Franks, who supported Bernie Sanders for the Democratic nomination, last month won a landslide victory in a rerun of his primary race against incumbent representative Penny Hubbard. The do-over was ordered by a judge who found serious irregularities with the absentee ballots that initially clinched victory for Hubbard, who sits on Clinton’s Missouri leadership council.”

“Historian Karp explores ‘This Vast Southern Empire’ and slavery” [News at Princeton]. Readers will recall we reviewed this book here. 

[MATTHEW KARP:] The European and American working classes of the 1850s needed not only shirts to wear but coffee in the morning and sugar to go in it. The demand for all these things rose spectacularly with the Industrial Revolution. Southerners looked at how the world economy was working in the mid-19th century and believed these key staples all had to be grown either by slaves or in coercive labor systems that resembled slavery.

Beyond specific global markets, everywhere in the 1850s there was this muscular spread of a Euro-American imperialism that relied on extractive, coercive labor from the people it dominated — from the British in India to the Dutch in Indonesia. Southerners said over and over again that the “dark races” of the world were either going to disappear or they’re going to have to be dragooned into labor. In a world of empire, racial domination and coercive labor, they thought, why couldn’t slavery have a part in the system?

The final element is the rise of racialized science, which was also gaining a lot of steam at this time in Northern and European universities. The 1850s are a moment where a lot of ideas about the biological capacity of the races were gaining momentum.

Southerners were saying, if you look at this economically, if you look at this politically, geopolitically, intellectually, all of the global trends of the 1850s actually favor our system, which is based on inequality and coercion. Today, we have a sense that slavery was on its way out — and it was, because the South lost the war — but I really don’t think slaveholders had that sense.


“One-third of all public schools in the United States could be contaminated with toxic PCBs, according to a new report from Sen. Edward Markey, a Massachusetts Democrat” [Reveal News]. “It found that up to 14 million American children could be exposed to PCBs, or polychlorinated biphenyls. The report estimated that it could cost upward of $52 billion to rid schools of this cancer-causing chemical.”

“Amid Media Blackout over Climate Change Links to Hurricane Matthew, Top Scientist Speaks Out” [Democracy Now!]. “[Michae Mann:] You know, it’s unfortunate that some in the weather community are not providing that critical context for understanding this trend towards increasingly devastating tropical storms and hurricanes. Matthew is a very good example of a storm that was unique, unprecedented, in certain respects. It intensified far more quickly than any other storm that we’ve seen in modern history, basically going from not even a tropical depression to a near-hurricane-strength storm over the course of, you know, less than half a day, and then, the next day, of course, strengthening into a major hurricane, a Category 5 hurricane.”

Guillotine Watch

“You Bought a Vineyard. Now, Meet Your Staff” [Wall Street Journal]. “Another touch that boosted a sense of community: Earlier this year they hosted an Easter party with workers and their children, which included a hunt for chocolates around the property.  Denise Adams says she enjoyed putting on the event, but may have made a bit of a mistake with the menu, which included U.S. staples such as lemonade and carrot-cake cupcakes with cream-cheese frosting. When some of the children, not used to the flavors, tried the items, they started crying, she says. ‘I guess it was one of those mistakes that Americans make in France,’ she says. ‘Everybody had a wonderful time, and we laughed hysterically.'” Sounds like American food is even more horrid than anybody could possibly have imagined.

Class Warfare

“The Skills Delusion” [Adair Turner, Project Syndicate]. “Everybody agrees that better education and improved skills, for as many people as possible, is crucial to increasing productivity and living standards and to tackling rising inequality. But what if everybody is wrong?… As for inequality, we may need to offset it through overt redistribution, with higher minimum wages or income support unrelated to people’s price in the job market, and through generous provision of high-quality public goods.” Of course, Clinton has already foreclosed this possibility; after all, some of the redistribution would go to “irredeemables.” 

“A new exposition of assemblage theory” [Understanding Society]. “[B]oth ‘the Market’ and ‘the State’ can be eliminated from a realist ontology by a nested set of individual emergent wholes operating at different scales” (and see subseqent critique of “emergence”). Anybody who quotes Deleuze gets my attention, but I did find this article a little hard to penetrate.

“The Battle of Hastings: What’s Behind the Netflix CEO’s Fight to Charterize Public Schools?” [Capital and Main]. A hatred for public goods? Why, yes! “Hastings, at a 2014 CCSA meeting, asserted that public schools are hobbled by having elected schoolboards.” Another squillionaire with bright ideas. They can’t all leave for Mars soon enough, for me.

News of the Wired

Excellent headline: “Romanian villagers decry police investigation into vampire slaying” [McClatchy]. Best ever lead: “Before Toma Petre’s relatives pulled his body from the grave, ripped out his heart, burned it to ashes, mixed it with water and drank it, he hadn’t been in the news much.”

“To deal with their miserable lives, naked mole rats have evolved to feel no pain” [Ars Technica]. I think we’ve learned an important lesson here today… 

“‘Poetry for the ear’: Bob Dylan wins Nobel Prize in literature” [WaPo]. 

* * *

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


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About Lambert Strether

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


    1. Vatch

      Harrumph! Werewolves wouldn’t burn the vampire’s heart to ashes before consuming it. They like to eat their meat raw!

      1. Kim Kaufman

        I don’t get the mixing it with water and drinking it. But I know some people who are very deserving of the rest of it.

        1. uncle tungsten

          Reducing anything to charcoal and then mixing with water is age old remedy to defeat flatulence. All those garlic cloves that are found strung around a dead vampires neck are added danger in these rituals. Vampire induced flatulence is likely to be a mighty serious problem. It could be a transmission vector for reincarnation of the spirit of the beast.

  1. Chris

    Does anyone have a good reference “proving” the Wikileaks Podesta emails are legitimate? I’m getting tired of my Facebook feed claiming this is all propaganda created by the Russians instead of actual campaign documents. I heard 4Chan had something good but other than that I haven’t found a convenient link.

    1. aj

      What proof do you need? Anyone who doesn’t like Hillary is either a sexist Bernie-Bro or is working for Putin. Julian Assange is both. That’s why we need to send in a drone strike to murder him. /sarcasm

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Both a basement dweller and a deplorable.

        “Make sure you ask that question in the next debate, so I can say, I will represent ALL Americans.”

    2. Lambert Strether Post author

      The best evidence is the behavior of everybody but the Clinton campaign (see the ABC story above, for one example). I can say (a) that any claim by any intelligence official is more likely to be a lie than the truth (that’s their job, after all) and that (b) the only actual allegation of fakery I’m familiar with turned out to be false.

      There’s also the behavior of Clinton surrogates. Some take the hard line that they’re fake; others, like Joe Klein, treat them as legitimate, but a non-story, even a positive for Clinton, since they show her pragmatic side. Of course, if the Clinton campaign were able to prove they were fake, they’d get all their surrogates pushing that story.

      In summary, the body language of all the players but the actual Clinton campaign staff — to whom the Rice-Davies rule applies — says the Wikileaks emails are legit. We might also remember that the Wikileaks operation has a good track record on legitimate documents.

      In short, it’s about as good as it gets with digital evidence.

      4chan is unlikely.

      1. charles leseau

        I believe the 4chan bit was that they found passwords in the emails to Podesta’s itunes and something else and they worked. Not entirely sure how that proves it was Podesta’s itunes, but I didn’t get any in-depth explanation and didn’t ask for one.

        1. OIFVet

          They used the username and password supplied in the email to access Podesta’s twitter account and post an endorsement for Trump. What other proof do you need? See the Great Orange Satan for the play by play and screenshots.

          1. charles leseau

            Ya, I missed ggm’s post below when I typed this. Twitter it was. But don’t mistake me here. It’s mostly a matter of my own ignorance of how that is proof than any doubt on my part.

            1. hunkerdown

              Someone carrying a key to an apartment can be (rebuttably) presumed to have a right of entry, if not a right of exclusion (which iTunes terms and conditions would take care of, here, unless he was sharing an account — CFAA anyone?). Reasonable rebuttals include the actual owner presenting a stronger claim than the possession of a key.

              I believe this doctrine is called “constructive possession” but I am no lawyer, just a law otaku.

        2. Lambert Strether

          That’s actually really smart and funny (and meta).

          50 lashes with a wet noodle for lambert!

          Does anyone have a link?

    3. OIFVet

      Yesterday I had a spat with someone who had linked to the Eichenwald’s Newsweek BS. I countered with Greenwald’s devastating takedown of Eichenwald, threw in Debbie Does Democracy In’s speedy DNC exit following the DNC revelations, and asked why does the media need to lie and the democrats need to hide if the emails are fake. Heard crickets after that.

    4. Sandy

      Podesta’s twitter account was “hacked” yesterday, because Podesta’s iTunes and iCloud passwords were in the email dumps. They tried it on Twitter and it worked.

      1. Lambert Strether

        It was reasonable to assume the dumps were legit before. Now it’s a virtual certainty.

        It’s also amazing that Podesta didn’t change the passwords, and no general security announcement seems to have been made.

    5. ggm

      Podesta’s twitter account and i-devices were hacked yesterday using a password found in the emails. See here.

      That is pretty good evidence that the emails are authentic, unless you believe the hackers managed to guess his password by an astronomically lucky coincidence.

      I think this is also evidence that the hacks were not carried out by an elite team of state-sponsored cyber experts. Podesta was emailing his password in plain text, using a simple password, using that password across multiple accounts. Further, he didn’t bother to change his password despite his mailbox being hacked and the contents spreading all over the internet!

      This man is a dingbat on computer security matters. Literally anyone could have hacked him using very simple techniques. That password (Hunter4567) could have been brute forced quickly using tools available to everyone.

      Have to go with Occam’s razor and say this was probably not a massive Russian plot to influence the election and install Trump, just an incompetent person getting caught with their pants down by someone poking around.

      1. OIFVet

        The Putin doctored the email to include Podesta’s password. Duh! Debunked in a nanosecond! /Sarc

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          Perhaps a Russian-trained impostor has been impersonating Podesta the last few years.

          And, so, the emails are both real (from the impostor) and not real (because they were composed by the impostor).

            1. OIFVet

              Podesta is a Russian mole who is working to sink Madame Secretary’s campaign in order to elect Russian shill Trump! Debunked your Russian meddling, again!

              Man, it is actually a lot of fun to think like a Dem loyalist. Mostly because it actually requires very little thinking.

      2. hunkerdown


        An English word and four digits is all that stands between neoliberal hegemony and the pitchforks?! For effing sakes, the adolescent sense of invulnerability of our “make it so” bourgeoisie has me laughing nervously! The /b/tards could have force majeured the Democratic Party right out of business as almost happened to that French TV station.

      3. Chris

        Much obliged for the comments. It’s a pity there’s nothing better than what we have and logic. If either of those were followed we wouldn’t be down to Trump and Clinton in the first place.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Recast and repeated enough times, and they become facts.

        “Trump has lost it.”

        “Voters are deserting him.”

        “Hillary will win.”

    6. alex morfesis

      the “truth” is irrelevant…we are told to hate muslims because they ? hate jesus ? but muslims pray 5 times a day for the return of the son of mary…you know…the one christians call a virgin…

      someone decided I was a racist yesterday because I had a strong comment about the alawi and their “esoteric” visions of “islam plus” and “who” is important…

      so don’t worry about your feed…they won’t believe you anyway…

    7. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      The news organizations have (or used to have) a duty not to report lies.

      And remember, all it takes is one phone call from the DNC. So, if they are reporting it, the emails are legitimate.

      Wiki can leak, but they can ignore.

      Here is your proof.

      1. John k

        Bar was at one time higher than not telling lies.
        Speaking truth to power implies not being bought.
        Wapo and Nyt was at one time willing to investigate. Long gone now.
        Banana republic with nukes… There you have it.

        But what good are nukes you never use? plus we know nobody else would dare to use theirs…

    8. sid_finster

      If the MSM wanted to find out whether the emails were genuine or doctored or forgeries, all they have to do is ask Podesta for the authentic emails.

      The MSM hasn’t done so, because the results would spoil their narrative.

    9. Benedict@Large

      The best I’ve heard is that not a single person in the From/To addresses is denying a single e-mail where they are so listed.

    10. m

      And the fact they came up with the Trump tape which would dominate the news coverage and paper over the Clinton/Podesta emails.
      Trump is a pig, exactly how is that news. I am thrilled Billy boys bad behavior is back in the news.

  2. Vatch

    I skimmed the Harpers article by Thomas Frank on the media’s extermination of Bernie Sanders. It’s a good article about an unpleasant topic. One point that is not clear from the blurb is that Frank isn’t writing about the media’s treatment of Sanders, but rather about the Washington Post’s treatment of Sanders. Occasionally other media outlets are mentioned (I saw a reference to the Associated Press), but it’s almost all about the Bezos Washington Post’s unfairness to Sanders. A lot of other newspapers mistreated him as well.

    1. PlutoniumKun

      The article is excellent, but if anyone doesn’t have the time to read it, I’d suggest going straight to the last page, its a brilliant demolition of modern punditry journalism. The last two paragraphs in particular:

      Meanwhile, between journalism’s insiders and outsiders—between the ones who are rising and the ones who are sinking—there is no solidarity at all. Here in the capital city, every pundit and every would-be pundit identifies upward, always upward. We cling to our credentials and our professional-class fantasies, hobnobbing with senators and governors, trading witticisms with friendly Cabinet officials, helping ourselves to the champagne and lobster. Everyone wants to know our opinion, we like to believe, or to celebrate our birthday, or to find out where we went for cocktails after work last night.

      Until the day, that is, when you wake up and learn that the tycoon behind your media concern has changed his mind and everyone is laid off and that it was never really about you in the first place. Gone, the private office or award-winning column or cable-news show. The checks start bouncing. The booker at MSNBC stops calling. And suddenly you find that you are a middle-aged maker of paragraphs—of useless things—dumped out into a billionaire’s world that has no need for you, and doesn’t really give a damn about your degree in comparative literature from Brown. You start to think a little differently about universal health care and tuition-free college and Wall Street bailouts. But of course it is too late now. Too late for all of us.

      1. Sammy Maudlin

        And suddenly you find that you are a middle-aged maker of paragraphs—of useless things—dumped out into a billionaire’s world that has no need for you, and doesn’t really give a damn about your degree in comparative literature from Brown

        Along these same lines, modern punditry is public relations, not journalism. Journalism has intrinsic value in an open society. People desire information about events that shape their lives, and in most cases, they want to know the truth. Someone who is skilled at obtaining and presenting factual information will always possess a skill that the public considers valuable.

        Whereas public relations has value only to the person or entity that wants to control and shape their image in the eyes of the public. There is limited intrinsic value to public relations in an open society because, at essence, it is the practice of deception. People in public relations, at a minimum, want to control the presentation of facts in a way that makes their client look as good as possible, even to the detriment of the public. A person who is skilled at that may continue to hone their craft and become better at it, but demand for their services will only be valuable to a limited subset of the populace.

        It seems to me that the two fields are irreconcilable and serve completely different ends. A person that serves as an access journalist/PR man in disguise is essentially betting that there will be a growth market for deception. However, you choose to serve that limited set of people, as Frank describes, one day you could simply be without a market for your skill.

    2. Chauncey Gardiner

      Yes, thanks for the link to Thomas Frank’s essay in Harpers about the efforts of corporate media, particularly the Washington Post and New York Times, to kill Senator Bernie Sanders’ campaign for the presidency.

      Yesterday NC linked to an article from the American Conservative by Michael Tracey titled “The Real Deplorables”. In his article Tracey observed: …”The real “deplorables” generally aren’t the people whom Hillary denounced as wholly “irredeemable,” or at whom economically secure commentators fulminate on a regular basis. More obviously “deplorable” are Hillary’s fellow financial, political, economic, and military elites who wrecked the economy, got us mired in endless unwinnable foreign wars, and erected a virtually impenetrable cultural barrier between everyday Americans trying to live fruitful lives and their pretentious, well-heeled superiors ensconced in select coastal enclaves. It is thanks to the actions of this “basket of deplorables” that we’re in the situation we’re in”…

      Clearly Michael Tracey overlooked a group. But what is particularly troubling me was Thomas Frank’s observation: …”for the sort of people who write and edit the opinion pages of the Post, there was something deeply threatening about Sanders and his political views. He seems to have represented something horrifying, something that could not be spoken of directly but that clearly needed to be suppressed.”

      I find myself wondering why this is so?

      1. Iowan X

        45% of Democrats eagerly voted for him during the primaries, and as we know, more would have, if they could have. The un-remarked-upon factor of the Sanders campaign–which the PTB really don’t want to discuss, write about, or opine about, is the way they raised their money. THAT was a game changer, and the PTB do NOT want the game to change. (Trump, in his oddball way, is doing something less systematic about campaign money as well, but the R’s sure ain’t spending like they ought to). Sanders and Trump both threaten the status quo of the billion dollar campaign financing model. Therefore both are threats. I think that may be part of the answer to your question.

        A 74 year old Senator from Vermont, a Democratic Socialist who changes party affiliation to D specifically to run against Hillary raises well over $200M over a few months, WITHOUT A PAC or SUPERPAC is not a story? $27 bucks a pop? This is deeply threatening to the political class. Insider access by journalists only works when the big funders are all that matter, and are the background speakers in many stories (I assume). A billionaire blowhard is one thing. Bernie Sanders was the real deal, and one of the great features of his campaign was seen, by the media early and clearly, as a bug to be squashed–not just the policy, although that was the hook they used. They couldn’t attack the funding model, nor could they attack the fact that it worked. I think Thomas Frank missed that part of the equation in his article. Otherwise, Frank was completely fair in describing the media fail re the D primary. I expect future historians to judge even more harshly.

          1. Lambert Strether

            Sanders took a hit for the future left. The Democrat Establishment will find it more difficult to deploy the “Nader! Neener neener!” talking point, which has been fabulously destructive, this time around. Elections come and go, and when this one is gone, Sanders is going to be right back in the Senate. Yeah, it’s an inside game. And I support an inside/outside model.

      2. Lambert Strether

        At bottom, the 10% is worried that somebody’s going to come to kill them and take their stuff. And at some level, they know, but cannot admit to themselves, that what they as a class have done has created the situation they are so terrified of.

        Lots of projection going on, driven by guilt and bad faith.

        1. Ulysses


          The trick, for us, is to convince them that sharing some of their ill-gotten gains– not harsh repression of the “deplorable” unwashed masses– would be their best chance for survival.

  3. EGrise

    Vladimir Putin, Russia’s latter-day Stalin […]

    Good grief. Really? In what way is Putin like Stalin? Is it because he’s the ruler of Russia and opposed to American hegemony? Or is it because he’s about to become involved in a global war?

    1. Vatch

      Putin is repressive, but he’s far removed from the depths of Stalin. This reminds me a little of Ajamu Baraka’s characterization of Bernie Sanders as one who has a “tacit commitment to Eurocentrism and normalized white supremacy.”

      1. nowhere

        Vatch, I generally love your comments (I know I’m an infrequent poster), but I’m confused on why the constant references to Baraka’s comments on white supremacy? I am genuinely curious.

        1. Vatch

          The Green party had a wonderful opportunity in the millions of Sanders supporters who might easily be encouraged to vote Green in the Presidential election. Inexplicably, the Greens chose a Vice Presidential candidate who insulted Sanders and his supporters. I was hoping that Baraka would backtrack or provide a clarification such as “Bernie Sanders and his supporters are not white supremacists.” But he didn’t do that, even though Sanders and his supporters are genuinely opposed to white supremacy, unlike Trump and Clinton.

          I plan to grit my teeth and vote for the Greens for President and Vice President (because the alternatives are so vile), but I am quite annoyed by their amateurishness. I also regret sending them a donation in July, a few weeks before they chose Ajamu Baraka to be their VP candidate. That’s probably a big source of my annoyance: buyer’s remorse. Plus, some other people are probably thinking similar thoughts, but they’re embarrassed to criticize a black man, for fear of being falsely labelled racists. Somebody needs to speak up.

          1. Tom Allen

            How about a clarification like: “This is not to suggest that everyone who might find a way to support Sanders is a closet racist and supporter of imperialism.”

            That sentence, appearing just a paragraph before the one you object to, comes from Baraka’s article The Yemen Tragedy and the Ongoing Crisis of the Left in the United States, which discusses, among others things, Sanders’s (and Obama’s, and many liberals’) continued support of drone strikes and of funding for Saudi Arabia. It might be worth re-reading now that US warships are bombing Yemen directly.

            1. Vatch

              Maybe I’m just too sensitive, but I think that Baraka carefully made his statement about Sanders, racism, white supremacy, and imperialism in a way that technically absolves Sanders and his supporters of guilt, but which strongly implies that we are guilty. Baraka can claim that he didn’t make the accusations that I think he made, while winking cleverly at this friends. A little plain speaking would be refreshing.

              The American military action in Yemen is not being orchestrated by Sanders or his supporters. Obama, Bush, Cheney, the right wingers who manipulate them, and the Saudis are responsible. Also Americans who drive SUVs and muscle cars. So I guess Sanders supporters who drive such vehicles can be blamed, too. My car is too small and too fuel efficient to qualify.

                1. Vatch

                  What’s important for political candidates is to convince people to vote for them. When a politician such as Baraka goes out of his way to alienate his natural supporters, it’s comment worthy.

          2. reslez

            I’m going to vote as if my vote mattered. I’m going to vote for the person I believe is most qualified for the job.

            I’m going to write in Bernie Sanders.

            I voted Green in 2008 and 2012. Not this time. Stein has lost her shine.

            1. Massinissa

              At least Stein isn’t going around trying to get people to vote for Clinton and looking like a hypocrite in the process.

              I understand writing down a name of someone other than Stein, but Sanders? Really?

            2. crittermom

              I would also love to write in Bernie, but it would be a wasted vote since Bernie didn’t register as a write-in. (Wahhh!)

              If you’re going to waste your vote may I suggest you write in Putin?
              That should sufficiently p*ss off the Dems!

            3. Skip Intro

              is this part of the official anti-green DNC write-in-Bernie scam, or a spontaneous impulse?
              Just asking, because a spoiled ballot will be a lot more useful to them than one that shows support for real progressive policy.

          3. Lambert Strether

            > [Sanders] tacit commitment to Eurocentrism and normalized white supremacy.

            Making it all the more remarkable that Stein pleaded with Sanders to take the top of the ticket.

            If I want thoroughly unprincipled behavior, I have better alternatives than the Greens.

      2. Solar Hero

        Thank you for giving me an example of what you don’t like about Baraka. But how do you rebut his obviously true statement? Bernie is all good with US foreign policy…..

        1. Vatch

          No, Sanders is not “all good” with US foreign policy. Here are several Congressional votes of his in which he opposed US foreign or defense policy:

          His vote against the Patriot Act:


          His vote against the Iraq war resolution:


          Some of his criticism of the Israeli treatment of Palestinians:



          Against the original Homeland Security Act:


          His votes against the Patriot Act reauthorization of 2005:



          His vote against the USA “Freedom” Act of 2015 (really just more Patriot Act stuff):


          His vote against the National Defense Authorization Act of 2011. Section 1021(b)(2) of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) permits the military to detain anyone, including U.S. citizens, who “substantially support” — an undefined legal term — al-Qaida, the Taliban or “associated forces,” again a term that is legally undefined. Those detained can be imprisoned indefinitely by the military and denied due process until “the end of hostilities.” In an age of permanent war this is probably a lifetime. Anyone detained under the NDAA can be sent, according to Section (c)(4), to any “foreign country or entity.” This is, in essence, extraordinary rendition of U.S. citizens. It empowers the government to ship detainees to the jails of some of the most repressive regimes on earth.


    2. m

      I read something on a conspiracy web-site, which sometimes has legit stuff. Basically the EU & US are going to start blocking Russian media because of Syria. They are having a hard time convincing public of the bs that state & cia are pushing. Hope it is just conspiracy.

  4. Jane

    “When asked by Couric how she feels about San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick, and others athletes, refusing to stand for the anthem, Ginsburg replied: “I think it’s dumb and disrespectful”

    No. What is ‘dumb and disrespectful’ is anyone who thinks they have the right to tell Colin Kaepernick or any other person how they get to express their suffering.

    1. Anne

      I must have missed the part where Justice Ginsburg tells Kaepernick how he should be expressing his suffering – she was asked how she feels about his refusing to stand, and it appears she supplied an answer (my bold, below).

      “Would I arrest them for doing it? No,” Ginsburg elaborated. “I think it’s dumb and disrespectful. I would have the same answer if you asked me about flag burning. I think it’s a terrible thing to do, but I wouldn’t lock a person up for doing it. I would point out how ridiculous it seems to me to do such an act.

      Couric then asked, “But when it comes to these football players, you may find their actions offensive, but what you’re saying is, it’s within their rights to exercise those actions?”

      “Yes,” said Ginsburg. “If they want to be stupid, there’s no law that should be preventive. If they want to be arrogant, there’s no law that prevents them from that. What I would do is strongly take issue with the point of view that they are expressing when they do that.”

      Now, you can argue that maybe it’s dumb for Ginsburg, as a sitting SC Justice, to express her opinion, but she makes clear that while she may disagree with it, she recognizes his right to express himself as he has.

      1. OIFVet

        She doesn’t simply express her opinion, she also passes a moral judgement. I have a problem with a sitting Supreme Court justice passing moral judgements, even if she insists that she wouldn’t infringe on his constitutional rights. It is a slippery slope she shouldn’t have ventured on.

        1. Spring Texan

          Moreover, “dumb” seems like a bad slam given stereotypes of blacks, and in my opinion it is both smart and respectful.

          I love Justice Ginsberg, but she’s dead wrong on this one in a “dumb and disrespectful” way.

          Nonetheless, I am not among those who wants to inhibit Justice Ginsberg from expressing HER opinion.

      2. Roger Smith

        Yes, but what stops justices from jumping that hairline gap between opinion and practice? How much more antipathy is required for her to begin acting on those personal feelings? It is a thin line to cross with no checks (other than dissenting court members on a particular topic) and the idea that a Supreme Court Justice so readily calls other people dumb and stupid.

        Her seeming lack of consideration on the matter is unsettling. I have nothing against older age groups, but I am getting really tired of the seeming geriatrification(?) of the political apparatus.

        “I’m an old bitty! Merh!” A SCJ’s response should have simply been, “It is well within his rights as defined by the Constitution to whatever he damn well pleases during such events.”

        1. Roger Smith

          …and the idea that a Supreme Court Justice so readily calls other people dumb and stupid should raise alarm.

        2. Jim Haygood

          Ever since Ginsburg abandoned all decorum by intemperately blasting Trump last July, one has to suspect incipient senility … or maybe meth abuse, to make her rant like that.

          1. PhilU

            Picturing RBG as a tweaker made me almost spit my drink up. I have been getting increasingly concerned with her statements lately. However, its hard to tell if this is stuff she always has said but has recently been plagued with reporters following her around or if the questionably appropriate utterances are a new thing.

      3. John Wright

        For a Supreme court judge to suggest the Kaepernick protest is “dumb” seems to indicate she doesn’t understand the power of seizing a rare, perhaps once in a lifetime, forum to present one’s protest.

        Ginsburg should have said “inspired” rather than “dumb”

        Kaepernick is unlikely to have other off the field opportunities to make his opinion so widely known,

        Many can remember when athletes have grabbed the opportunity to protest, such as 200meter sprinters Tommie Smith and John Carlos in the 1968 Mexico City Olympics.

        Usually protesters suffer financially as a consequence.

        I remember newscaster Connie Chung interviewing a kid who actually burned the US flag, leading to much pontification by US politicians about the need for a Flag Burning amendment.

        Chung said “Didn’t you know you would upset people” and the kid, with a look at Chung of “you’re really dumb” replied, “yes, that is why I did it”.

        He realized he wanted to make his protest known and wanted to upset people.

        Perhaps athletes are more sensitive than Supreme Court Justices to injustice as they know of the mistreatment of previous generations of athletes, for example, Jesse Owens was banned, by US officials, from competition after his triumphant 1936 Berlin Olympics when he would not stay and compete, for free, in Europe afterwards.


        “After the 1936 Olympics were over, the US track and field team was scheduled to compete in Sweden. Owens, however, opted to return to the U.S. to make some money off his hard-earned success.”

        “To make matters worse, the US Olympic Committee was furious that Owens had returned home to capitalize on his success. They stripped him of his amateur status and banned him from further competitions. Unable to perform, Owens watched his commercial opportunities disappear.”

        While Justice Ginsburg may be frequently granted a forum to make her views known, others are not so fortunate.

        One might hope a Supreme Court judge would be more circumspect and understanding of someone else’ s viewpoint..

        And Ginsburg is viewed as a liberal justice.

    2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      I hope Ginsburg isn’t suffering as well, or she might want to express it too.

      At the end, we let people express themselves.

      “You disapprove? That’s your opinion for you to express.”

    3. Fred

      “or any other person how they get to express their suffering.”

      Unless they protest federal government action by flying the confederate battled flag.

    4. kimsarah

      These chicken-shit critics are the same types of clowns who stood on the sidelines and wouldn’t stand up for Martin Luther King and other civil rights leaders at the time — yet praise them to death 60 years later.

  5. bwilli123

    More Guillotine Watch


    “A Swiss journalist has created a Twitter bot that tracks dictators’ flights to and from Geneva, as part of a crowdsourced effort to shed light on potentially shady dealings. The bot, called GVA Dictator Alert, tracks planes registered to authoritarian governments and automatically posts their arrivals and departures to Twitter. Since launching in April, the bot has posted more than 60 arrivals and departures to its Twitter page, and is currently tracking 80 different aircraft registered to repressive governments.”


  6. Jim Haygood

    Just as cops take more money from people with civil forfeiture than burglars do, they arrest more people for cannabis than for all violent crimes combined:

    Law enforcement agencies made 574,641 arrests last year for small quantities of the drug intended for personal use, according to the report, which was released Wednesday by the American Civil Liberties Union and Human Rights Watch. The marijuana arrests were about 13.6 percent more than the 505,681 arrests made for all violent crimes, including murder, rape and serious assaults.


    To state it differently, more people are arrested for victimless crimes (where the only complainant is a law enforcement officer) than for crimes in which someone actually suffered harm.

      1. Jim Haygood

        Probably the order of magnitude difference in stats relates to “victimizations” vs “arrests.”

        Lots of crime reports never result in an arrest.

      2. Fiver

        ‘Perhaps we should put some of those responsible for that mass black on black violent crime in prison rather than drug offenders. Why doesn’t Obama direct his DOJ to do just that?’

        Or maybe the US should finally face up to the fact it has never done more than the least it could possibly get away with when it comes to dealing with deeply entrenched systemic racism/poverty.

    1. JohnnyGL

      That’s pretty damning on its face. The drug war is the primary function of the police in the USA. Violent stuff is secondary.

      “Tess Borden, a fellow at Human Rights Watch and the A.C.L.U., who wrote the report, found that despite the steep decline in crime rates over the last two decades — including a 36 percent drop in violent crime arrests from 1995 to 2015 — the number of arrests for all drug possessions, including marijuana, increased 13 percent.

      The emphasis on making marijuana arrests is worrisome, Ms. Borden said.”

      You bet it is!!!

      1. hunkerdown

        Not worrisome, so much as political. For some reason, Nixon’s stated intent for the Drug War never seems to pass the lips of the Caring Classes.

  7. Fred

    ” “Swat Team: The media’s extermination of Bernie Sanders,…”

    Looks like the media is now making Trump feel the Bern!
    Didn’t they do this with aluminum tubes, yellow cake and slam dunk evidence in that war Hilary voted for? Sure looks familiar.

    1. Lambert Strether

      They did, and yes it does.

      Another splendid feature of this wonderfully clarifying campaign as been the open emergence of media corporations as the supporters of particular candidates, eliminating their news function (since who can trust what they write?)

      I have been able to think of the media’s behavior in Iraq as episodic, driven by stories the Bush administration planted. In this campaign, it’s not episodic but systemic; the entire political class is all in, and unanimous. I don’t see how this gets walked back, and I think it will continue after the election, because there will always be some new threat to justify it.

  8. human

    Statement of September 11th Advocates
    Saudia Arabia Support of ISIS
    October 12, 2016

    “Aren’t the Saudis your friends?” Obama smiled. “It’s complicated,” he said. “My view has never been that we should throw our traditional allies”—the Saudis—”overboard in favor of Iran.” President Barack Obama


    “We have as solid a relationship, as clear an alliance and as strong a friendship with the kingdom of Saudi Arabia as we have ever had.” Secretary of State John Kerry


    “I think it’s important to the United States to maintain as good a relationship with Saudi Arabia as possible.” Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell


    “The strategic partnership between the United States and Saudi Arabia is based on mutual interests and a longstanding commitment to facing our common threats together.” Speaker of the House Paul Ryan


    “I think Saudi Arabia is a valuable partner in the war on terror. If you want to lose Saudi Arabia as an ally, be careful what you wish for.” Senator Lindsey Graham

    “There is a public relations issue that exists. That doesn’t mean that it’s in our national interest to not have an alliance with them — I mean they’re an important part of our efforts in the Middle East.” said Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Corker


    “Thank God for the Saudis and Prince Bandar, and for our Qatari friends.” Senator John McCain


    Citing Western Intelligence, U.S. Intelligence, and Intelligence from the Region, that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia—not just its rich donors– was providing clandestine financial and logistic support to ISIL and other radical Sunni groups, we would like to know why President Obama, Secretary of State John Kerry, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Speaker of the House Paul Ryan, Senator Bob Corker, Senator Lindsey Graham, and Senator John McCain, would EVER consider the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia our ally.

    Markedly, this is not complicated, nor is it a friendship, a special relationship, a valuable partnership, a clear alliance, a strategicpartnership, or a public relations issue.

    The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia is a sponsor of terrorism.

    According to Western Intelligence, U.S. Intelligence and Intelligence from the region, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia clandestinely funds and logistically supports ISIS.

    How could a nation like Saudi Arabia (or Qatar) that funds or logistically supports ISIS be considered an ally of the United States in the fight against ISIS?

    The Saudis (and the Qataris) are funding and logistically supporting our enemy.

    The United States Government should not condone, enable, or turn a blind eye to that fact.

    As 9/11 family members whose husbands were brutally murdered by 19 radical Sunni terrorists, we strongly request these appointed and elected officials immediately explain their indefensible positions with regard to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and its now clearly evident role in underwriting and logistically supporting radical Sunni terror groups worldwide.

    We also look forward to these appointed and elected officials immediately explaining to the American public why they oppose JASTA or want to re-write JASTA … anti-terrorism legislation specifically designed to hold the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia accountable for its funding and logistical support of radical Sunni terror groups that kill Americans.

    Finally, we would like to, once again, wholeheartedly thank all those members of Congress who saw the wisdom in making JASTA law. Clearly, this new evidence further validates your vote and support for JASTA. Furthermore, this evidence proves that JASTA was not a political vote, but rather a vote to keep Americans safer from terrorism.

    Keep Americans Safe From Radical Sunni Terrorists

    Hold The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Accountable

    Keep JASTA The Law of The Land


    # # #

    September 11th Advocates

    Kristen Breitweiser
    Monica Gabrielle
    Mindy Kleinberg
    Lorie Van Auken

    (edited to clean up white space and high bit characters. links tested. any errors are mine)

  9. clarky90

    Now that the most terrifyingly potent word in the English language, “PUSSY” has been rediscovered and resurrected by the Democrat Digital Archaeologists, it is time for reflection. “Pussy” has been detonated over the Trump campaign. Hillary Clinton will be elected. Nuclear War with Russia and China now seems likely.

    War may break out after Hillary’s election but before she takes office (think June 22, 1941)

    I am recommending downloading and securely storing as many recipes and photos of meals as possible! Also war movies and series (Band of Brothers etc). Digital survivalists, the new reality.

    Also, we MUST organize battalions of Social Justice Warriors
    to pull the dead and dying from the smoking rubble, rebuild the electricity grid, maintain social order and establish food supplies.

    Most likely, the “deplorables” and the “irredeemables” will be otherwise occupied in their own communities (that probably were not directly targeted)

    1. clarky90

      Russia orders all officials to fly home any relatives living abroad, as tensions mount over the prospect of a global war


      “Retired Russian Lt. Gen. Evgeny Buzhinsky told the BBC: ‘Of course there is a reaction. As far as Russia sees it, as Putin sees it, it is full-scale confrontation on all fronts. If you want a confrontation, you’ll get one.
      ‘But it won’t be a confrontation that doesn’t harm the interests of the United States. You want a confrontation, you’ll get one everywhere.'”

  10. allan

    Verizon says Yahoo hack ‘material,’ could affect deal [Reuters]

    Verizon Corp (VZ.N) said on Thursday it has a “reasonable basis” to believe Yahoo Inc’s (YHOO.O) massive data breach of email accounts represents a material impact that could allow Verizon to withdraw from its $4.83 billion deal to buy the technology company. …

    Apparently even a $1 billion price cut isn’t enough.

    1. Jim Haygood

      Sort of like a mafia godfather rejecting his new son in law because of littering and jaywalking convictions.

      1. hunkerdown

        Or a drug manufacturer rejecting using employees because they’re a personal shrinkage risk. Breaking only one law at a time, not giving Them any Excuse, is widely appreciated as a component of good OPSEC.

  11. Paid Minion

    The FAA, nor Fedex, have a sense of humor about leaking, undeclared hazmat shipments.

    Especially when they find it in the middle of the sorting center in Memphis

    1. uncle tungsten

      At least for Dylan being “down in the sewer with some little lover” was metaphor. For Trump it seems real.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      So, Hillary is not alone in being far removed from the middle class.

      “We (the liberal media elite) are with you.”

      1. hunkerdown

        Great find, gonzomarx. It’s bracingly lucid, after soaking in the petulant emo-goth fantasies of the looting professional classes. This is absolutely a must-read. Daily.

  12. timbers

    Imperial Collapse Watch

    RT is reporting “Russian government sources” say Obama & Saudi Arabia are moving 9,000 ISIS troops out of Mosul to be redeployed elsewhere in Syrian just ahead of Obama’s pretend attack on them. The purpose being to diminish Russia’s success in fighting ISIS vs Obama who’s spent years “fighting” ISIS (while actually helping) with no results.

    And MoonofAlabama says there is zero evidence to support the claim Yemen fired missiles at U.S. ships and suggests instead the Pentagon made it up to justify joining Saudi Arabia’s attack on the legitimate gov of Yemen, in order to prepare the U.A. in sending an invasion force to help the Saudi’s who are performing well at all against Yemen.

    The decrepitude just keeps getting better and better.

      1. OIFVet

        My name Gary Johnson, and I approve this geographic factoid. Now pass that joint. Puff puff give, you are messing up the rotation.

        1. Jim Haygood

          Guests at the Colorado dinner were admittedly experimenting with pairing weed and food, many giggling as they toked between bites. It became apparent late in the evening that a rich meal doesn’t counteract marijuana’s effects.

          “What was I just saying?” one diner wondered aloud before dessert. “Oh, yeah. About my dog. No, your dog. Somebody’s dog.”

          The man trailed off, not finishing his thought. His neighbor patted him on the back and handed him a fresh spoon for the ice cream.


          One toke over the line …

          1. Skippy

            Complimenting Dawg is like that… tho’ when one inhales the stronger stuff I’ve linked above Jim… can induce a nasty case of neural diverticulitis…

            Disheveled Marsupial…. pick your poison… at least the ice cream is not bent on global domination….

    1. Plenue

      I heard the claim about moving the ISIS fighters as well. That would be utterly brazen and couldn’t be done covertly; the world would know exactly what is going on if they were allowed to just leave Mosul and then suddenly thousands of new militants showed up around Deir Ezzor. I’m not saying it isn’t true, time will tell. I keep making the mistake of thinking something is too stupid or obvious for even our leaders to do them, and then being proved wrong.

      As for Yemen, any army that gets sent into there will be chewed up just like the Saudi and other Gulf State troops, and the African mercenaries they hired after it was obvious their own armies couldn’t do crap.

  13. bob k

    “New WikiLeaks emails show influence of Univision chairman in Clinton campaign”

    well that didn’t stop The Onion from doing top notch exposure of both candidates!

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      I think perhaps this means the possibility it could that the chairman has failed to stop the Onion, or the chairperson’s influence is altruistic, and not selfish.

  14. Sammy Maudlin

    Trump needs more Republican voters, particularly in Waukesha County, a heavily Republican suburb just west of Milwaukee.

    As NC’s man-on-the-ground in Walkersha ™ County I can tell you a couple of things. First, as I reported during the primaries, my unscientific polling of locals cast the election as an exercise in “anybody but Hillary or Trump.” This turned out to be correct. Cruz mopped the floor with Trump here and Hillary lost this county–TO A SOCIALIST!!!

    I think that sentiment continues to prevail in that no one here is pleased about the prospect of voting for either. The local buzz, however, isn’t what you may expect from a county that regularly delivers the hammer to Dem statewide hopes.

    As I have also mentioned, here and in the rest of the collar counties, people generally have it good. If anything, there are more good paying jobs than people to fill them. Housing market is solid, schools excellent. To the extent that the GFC ever hit this area, it has recovered. So, people here do not want change. If anything, they want “what’s best for business.” Most I’ve talked to think that is HRC. Plus, you have a lot of devout Catholics and Lutherans in the area who don’t like the whole grab-ass thing and Paul Ryan is a demigod in these parts.

    But, on the other side you have the devil herself.

    I think these factors will affect the collar county vote two ways. First, Walkersha has had almost impossibly high turnout previously, as high as 97%. That will not happen. Turnout will be high but not record-breaking. Also, you will see splitting the ticket. I guarantee that Ron Johnson takes the county handily, maybe even 80-20. But Trump will be lucky to win it at all. I see 45-45-10 (with Johnson/Weld getting the 10) +/- 5 points.

    However, that doesn’t end the statewide race as it otherwise normally would. As the RCP article points out, Hillary may have similar issues in Dane County. Because of screwing Sanders, she will not get the same turnout as Obama received. Jill Stein’s vote percentage in Dane County will likely be in her top five counties in the country.

    The X factor is that there have been whispers for years about Walkersha’s high turnout. Until recently the County Clerk refused to update the voting computer system to one that was connected via the internets. Why? No one really knows. But Waukesha County generally reports late, and often has been the cushion against a recount, if not the deciding factor, in elections like the Walker recall and the last two state Supreme Court elections. Maybe there’s some of that old-time voting magic left to see that by the end of election night the President will not be wearing a pantsuit to the inauguration.

    1. rich

      Remember when you vote:

      Clinton Foundation Runs $20 Million PEU

      The Washington Free Beacon reported:

      The Clinton Foundation is operating a $20 million private equity firm in Colombia, raising concerns from government and consumer watchdog groups who say the practice is unusual and could pose a significant conflict of interest.

      The line between the firm and the Clinton’s nonprofit world is hazy. Fondo Acceso is run out of the Clinton Foundation’s Bogota office and staffed by foundation employees, a representative at the office told the Washington Free Beacon on Tuesday.

      The Clinton Foundation has long been full of conflicts of interest and slipshod accounting. Those are necessary to send big money to friends.


      Who’s on her short list for Treasury Secretary, again?

  15. Jim

    Its nice to see people struggling with the nature of reality (assemblage theory).

    Of course the modern left tends to see such discussion as a waste of time but, in fact, such discussions are crucial to building any coherent vision of an alternative political/economic/financial/ cultural reality. (Just reflect for a moment on how neo-liberalism has constructed its current hegemony).

    The modern left also has difficulty in breaking with ontological realism To argue “… that social assemblages are independent of the context of our minds, that is independent of the way in which communities, organizations and cities are conceived…” seems quite a stretch.

    Don’t cities and culture go hand in hand? Couldn’t mind and culture be seen as an emergent layer, operating within the boundary conditions or organic and material realities

    Biological psychology attempts to reduce the mind to the brain and misses as a consequence the symbolic nature of the mind.

    Darwin established life (biology) as an autonomous, empirically accessible reality dependent on material elements(physics) but irreducible to them.

    Maybe the science of humanity also has a layered nature. Maybe the upper layer of mind and culture exist within the boundary conditions of organic and material realities but are also irreducible to them.;

    Today we have an autonomous science of Biology, maybe we need an autonomous science of mind and culture.

    1. JTMcPhee

      All that assumes that it is possible for humans to “assemble” in ways that people of good will (whatever that means) would sustain living under. Without all the little Iagos and Newts and Kochs and Blankfeins and Netanyahoos plying their apparently innate tendencies and insights to once again curdle the milk of human kindness (speaking of mythologies…)

      And “cities” are the rootstock of what we call, without much examination, “civilization:” mud walls to protect granaries, guards and then soldiers with kings to divinely rule them, priests to justify that, walls of stone and concrete, weapons of course with the inevitable arms races, the attacks and looting and putting to the sword, all to satisfy the appetites of what we pretend are the worst of us but are just the lusts of the most of us…

  16. Jay M

    there was never a recession and anyways those that became unemployed eventually became employed
    this is the churn theory of employment that is the favorite of austrian dairy farmers economists
    wealth has never been higher . . . we’ll just leave it at that
    other than, cream floats to the top
    it takes a village, so plan to intermarry so that the elite can remember who they are

  17. Kim Kaufman

    ““The Battle of Hastings: …They can’t all leave for Mars soon enough, for me.”

    It makes me uncomfortable to say I know Hastings’ lawyer (socially). A liberal/progressive Democratic. He’s a good attorney and he does what his client wants. I’m sure Hastings pays his bills. What would you do?

  18. Generalfeldmarschall von Hindenburg

    re WaPo “Vladimir Putin, Russia’s latter day Stalin” – wow…it’s really getting thick. Do people buy into this crap? I don’t know anyone who’s crappin’ their knickers waiting for the Russkies to show up. Like NO body.

  19. Procopius

    “Hacked 80-page roundup of paid speeches shows Clinton ‘praising Wall Street’” [Politico]. Politico is only getting around to this now?

    You expected her to say something else, maybe? The speeches were excuses to give her money. Of course she’s not going to say anything annoying or upsetting or meaningful. If somebody is going to give me $675,000 for giving three short speeches of course I’m going to say nice things that they want to hear. I don’t have to mean a word in them.

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