Links 10/1/16

Court Stops U.S. Fish & Wildlife from Killing Wild Red Wolves EcoWatch (furzy)


China paper says U.S., South Korea will ‘pay the price’ for planned missile system Reuters (furzy)

The Smog-Sucking Tower Has Arrived in China. But Can It Stay There? Motherboard

More adventures of the awesome octopusDuterte, Citing Hitler, Says He Wants to Kill 3 Million Addicts in Philippines New York Times. This is ugly, but the US has backed plenty of strong men with brutal domestic policies. As Micael wonders: “Is Duarte too friendly with China? Is philippines next country for an invasion?”

The Real Scandal Behind the Panama Papers Vanity Fair (furzy)

Refugee Crisis

Germany said it took in more than 1 million refugees last year. But it didn’t. Washington Post. Furzy: “​Good table of refugees by country….​”


Russia ‘driving Syria rebels to jihadists’ BBC. Help me. Per us, the mythical Syrian moderates are turning into evil jihadis thanks to evil Rooskies.

US and EU Sanctions Are Devastating Syrian Civilians Real News Network

Οn the legacy of Shimon Peres – very conflicting views Defend Democracy

The FBI Wanted to Target Yemenis Through Student Groups and Mosques Intercept (furzy)

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

District court overturns magistrate decision rejecting ‘seize first, search second’ procedure for email warrants Washington Post

New U.S. ‘secret’ clearance unit hires firm linked to 2014 hacks Reuters (Chuck L)

What Exactly Is Saudi Arabia’s Relationship to Terrorism? Atlantic

Want to make a million? Become a DEA informant. Washington Post (furzy)

Clinton E-mail Tar Baby

Judge: State Department need not seek records of Clinton’s private phone Politico

Comey denies Clinton email ‘Reddit’ cover-up Politico


Trump Blames Bad Poll Numbers on Existence of Numerical System New Yorker (EM)

USA TODAY’s Editorial Board: Trump is ‘unfit for the presidency’ USA Today

USA TODAY exclusive: Hundreds allege Donald Trump doesn’t pay his bills USA Today (furzy). This is why someone in the real estate or casino business must be smoking something very strong, or have a terrible opponent, to think of running for an executive position. It may well be that given the size of Trump’s businesses and the amount of time he’s been in business, this would be a typical amount of commercial disputes. But most people don’t want someone who is regularly in pig fights with vendors and workers holding public office.

Twitter, ‘lies’ and videotape: Trump shames beauty queen Associated Press (furzy)

An open letter to Volokh Conspiracy readers who are Trump supporters Washington Post (furzy)

This Chart Predicts Trump Will Win, Unless the S&P Rallies in October Bloomberg (resilc). Paging Dr. Yellen…

Donald Trump claims Google is hiding bad Hillary Clinton news, and isn’t entirely wrong Independent (resilc)

Reality-TV shock fatigue aids Trump Financial Times

Hacked Audio Reveals Hillary Clinton Sees Herself Occupying “Center-Left to Center-Right” Intercept (Joe H)

‘You Shouldn’t Listen to Me’ – Here’s What Bernie Sanders Said About Voting for Hillary Clinton Michael Krieger

Chicago Tribune endorses “agile, practical” Gary Johnson as USA Today decides not to endorse at all Salon (resilc)

He fought in World War II. He died in 2014. And he just registered to vote in Va. Washington Post (Micael)

Why don’t we restore the Constitution so every election is not “make or break”? Washington Post (furzy)

Court strikes down NH law banning ballot selfies WMUR (resilc)

Obama administration may use obscure fund to pay billions to ACA insurers Washington Post (furzy)

Shadow Regulation: the secret laws that giant corporations cook up in back rooms BoingBoing (resilc)

Four states sue to stop internet transition The Hill (furzy)

Wells Fargo

Illinois to Suspend Wells Fargo From Bond, Investing Work Bloomberg

Wells Fargo Crooks Stole From Customers, Reaped Obscene Rewards—and Stuck Us With the Bill Nation (resilc)

Wells Fargo’s Cross-Selling Mania Goes Back More Than 15 Years Public Citizen (Deontos)

How Wells Fargo Keeps Scamming Its Customers & Employees Real News Network. Bill Black in fine form.

Deutsche Bank

Senior officials rally behind Deutsche Bank Financial Times. Shares up 14%.

Republicans Slam Clinton for Deutsche Speeches as Firm Slumps Bloomberg

Escaping the New Normal of Weak Growth Project Syndicate (David L)

PE Firms Give up Equity Stake in Caesars Entertainment to Settle Bankruptcy: Who Are the Real Losers? Eileen Appelbaum. CEPR. CalPERS and CalSTRS were both investors, natch.

Real GDI Provides Strong Recession Warning Michael Shedlock (furzy)

Rents Plunge in San Francisco, New York. “Mixed” Nationally Wolf Richter

Strange Deaths of JPMorgan Workers Continue Pam Martens and Russ Martens

Johnson: The Fed is losing its aura of expertise Institute for New Economic Thinking

Puerto Rico handed deadline by debt board Financial Times


Guillotine Watch

Secret Alpine Gold Vaults Are the New Swiss Bank Accounts Bloomberg (furzy)

Class Warfare

How to Retire at 40 Bloomberg. John W: “So many audacious assumptions!”

Antidote du jour (Lulu):


See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. EndOfTheWorld

    The Duterte link is conglomerated with the octopus link. But as far as the Philippines being invaded by the US, no way. But Duterte himself mentioned that the CIA would like to kill him. Duterte Harry is very popular in the Philippines. If he’s murdered in a coup attempt it will just turn the filipinos even more against the Americans.

    The “special relationship” with the US is over. Yes, it was the only American colony, and was a US commonwealth for a while, but now it seeks to get the hell away from the tottering empire and take its place in cahoots with its nearby Asian neighbors.

    1. PlutoniumKun

      On a purely anecdotal basis (I know a few people from the ‘pines), he seems to be very popular even among people who you would not consider natural supporters for someone like that. The perception people have of him I think is of someone who is very competent underneath the macho posturing. Whether this is true or whether its all part of the show only time will tell. But I think everyone is so sick there of corrupt and inept political leaders they are willing to give him a chance.

      The Philippines connection with the US is long and deep and I doubt there is much domestic appetite for changing it, not least because of a deep suspicion of the Chinese. I suspect that Washington would be happy to accept a bit of rabble rousing from him so long as he does’t propose a very deep change, and I doubt very much he he has any intention of doing that, there doesn’t seem to be any advantage to him in ‘switching sides’ – playing one off against the other is a more realistic policy. Its also got to be said that the Philippines just isn’t as strategically important as it once was. Its just not a geopolitical prize for anyone. From the point of view of ordinary Filipinos, thats probably a very good thing.

      1. Roger Smith

        But I think everyone is so sick there of corrupt and inept political leaders they are willing to give him a chance.

        Wait a second… why does that sound familiar?

        Also I have heard the same thing about Duterte from a friend who lived in and still has family in the Phillipenes.

  2. Jim Haygood

    Thursday’s fatal train wreck in Hoboken triggers a restructuring of NJ taxation on Friday:

    [Gov. Christie] agreed to raise the gas tax by 23 cents a gallon to replenish the depleted Transportation Trust Fund.

    In exchange for Mr. Christie’s acceptance of the higher gas tax, Democrats agreed to lower the state’s sales tax by less than half a penny and to phase out the estate tax by 2018.

    Mr. Christie said the sales tax rate would decrease next year to 6.875 percent, from 7 percent. In 2018, he said, it will drop again, to 6.625 percent.

    [The gas tax] was last raised in 1988, and now only Alaska’s is lower. With the proposed increase to 37.5 cents, New Jersey’s gas tax would be considerably higher than the national average of about 21 cents.

    In the over-regulated, disarmed tax hell of New Jersey, cheap full-service gasoline was the ONLY screaming bargain. Along the state’s 48-mile land border with New York, all the gas stations are on the NJ side.

    With NJ’s new 37.5-cent tax only six cents below NY’s 43.4 cents, the arbitrage ain’t even worth a dollar on a full tank. Goodbye to all that.

    1. diptherio

      Look at the bright side, at least they got rid of the estate tax, so you’ll be able to keep all your loot after you die…or someone will, anyway…

      Why do I get the feeling that most rich folks will realize more in savings from doing away with the estate tax than they’ll lose to the increased gas tax?

      One thing that bugs me about the NYC/NJ area is all the toll roads. You have the richest people in the world and you can’t figure out how to get them to pay for roads? Sometimes I’m truly astounded at the BS we become accustomed to. $13 to cross a bridge? Sure, that sounds reasonable!

      1. Chris

        Yes, this +100.

        Just like everyone loves a public private partnership that leads to a new toll road, people have to take to get to work. That’s the best! :/

        1. Felix_47

          How about instituting a drivers test like in Germany so half the drivers can’t pass. Then that should supercharge public transportation and open up the highways as well. Do we need a society built on individual auto transportation? Is that going to help global warming?

      1. witters

        This is a nonsense. No-one said that, or implied it. It is your TINA nonsense (the only way to safe transportation is a regressive flat tax on all road users) that needs calling out. Neoliberal nonsense, but the interests served are obvious.

        1. Plenue

          Spend enough time reading Jim Haygood comments and you’ll find you reach a point where you wouldn’t be at all surprised that that is exactly the sort of trade off he would accept.

          1. JTMcPhee

            Sounds like Madaline Albright: “500,000 dead Iraqi infants and children was worth it.” Or whatever exactly she said.

  3. jgordon

    About that hacked audio, I suddenly saw it all over youtube last night on various progressive channels from around midnight on. Well, here is a primary source! 2 minutes of Hillary explaining that Bernie supporters are basement dwelling barista losers without futures who are too naive to understand how politics really work. And she confirms she’s center-right, in case anyone was fooled by her recent ostensible leftness:

    Now, get over your butthurt and run out to vote for Hillary! I’m with her.

    1. Jim Haygood

      How revealing that Hillary views recent grads’ inability to find jobs matching their qualifications as a “mindset.”

      If it’s just a “mindset,” then it can be corrected by catapulting cleverer propaganda to encourage right thinking among these confused young adults.

      Which is why Hillary needs your support today. Me, I’ll take the Keef Richards route:

      I’ll be in my basement room
      With a needle and a spoon
      And another girl
      To take my pain away

      — Rolling Stones, Dead Flowers

      1. Desertmerf

        Our son is one of those recent grads Hillary disdains. He has just picked up his third slightly above minimum wage part time job. He has had two interviews in his chosen field only to be told at the end of each the companies were ‘just looking’ at the job field prospects and did not actually have an open job available…. he has applied for a number of generic type jobs that just require a college degree as well… to no response so far. He is personalble, bright and according to the managers at his part time jobs he was a great interviewee…

        He has severe kidney stone issues that require hospitalization and stents about once a year – often for ten day stays and so we have chosen to pay for a Cadillac policy for him ourselves so he gets the quality care he needs ( no the ACA was useless – he tried) . He is embarrassed we have to do this for him…
        He spends every bit of his meager pay paying off his small student loan debt so he can at least get that burden off and keeping his ancient little car in repair. He refused to allow us to help him pay his loans and or buy him a better car. He lives at home and feels terrible about it – and so is constantly doing all the home work he can during the few hours between his jobs to ‘make up’ for needing our help. Friends go out to dinner and movies sports games etc and have stopped asking him because he usually does not have the money …. So…..
        He is on his way to depression I think…. all that work in college. He has a solid 3.4 GPA and a 3.7 GPA in his field.and he is willing to move anywhere immediately and would not mind a job that entailed a lot of travel…. But I guess Hillary just thinks he is some unmotivated stupid despite all that….
        I know a vote for Stein is totally useless but other that leaving it blank I have no options here. This country is tanking….I cannot believe this is happening to my son. Spouse and I walked out of college with a 3.1 and 3.0 gpas directly into decent paying career jobs and an upward trajectory that continues to this day… he is smarter and works harder than either of us ever have frankly….

        1. Pavel

          Meanwhile Chelsea (who “doesn’t care about being rich” or whatever nonsense she spouted) is grifted into a $500K/year do-nothing job at NBC, marries a hedge fund manager, and flies in private jets. And her mom and dad make $300,000 for one hour speeches.

          But hey, Hillary feels your son’s pain!

          1. Science Officer Smirnoff

            Don’t slam those who have feelings—like Donald feels a lot of Rust Belt ex-workers’ pain. It’s all they get or will get, don’t you think?

            P. S. Chelsea once upon a time wanted to be an M. D. strikingly enough.

            1. Pat

              Clinton was told over eight years ago that a huge number of Americans are in pain with good reason. See John Edwards’ Two Americas… She was ignoring it then, she planned on ignoring it again. Unfortunately Trump came along and recognized the pain. Sanders felt it. Clinton doesn’t feel diddly except her own personal greed, ambition, entitlement, and anger at anyone who thinks her being a public servant means actually working in the public interest not her own.

              For that alone she needs to be dropped kicked into obscurity and a future where she and Bill really do find out what being broke and looking forward to the Social Security Check is like.

              1. different clue

                If the only reliable way to do that is to vote for Trump, how many people are prepared to vote for Trump? Is “President Trump” a price worth paying to exterminate the Clinton Dynasty and all its slimetrails from the public landscape?

                1. JTMcPhee

                  Sadly, of course, not crowning the Crow Woman is not going to begin to affect the Clinton Dynasty and the nastiness that die-nasty or criminal syndicate has parented.

                  I am trying to remove nutsedge, a particularly tenacious weed, that spreads and insinuates itself into and chokes out other “nicer” plants by shedding seeds, firing rhizomes and runners in all directions, and building networks way down into the soil with lots of tubers at the nodes to feed the persistence and growth of that bit of the plant family. Even Rouondup! (TM) won’t kill it, and hand-weeding just encourages the beast by loosening and aerating the soil.

                  The neighbors have totally retreated into their flat-screens, just accepting that “yard” = “nutsedge,” mowing occasionally and leaving the seed stalks to wave in the breeze, flipping seeds across the “property line” and into my attempt at healthy less labor-and-chemical-intensive ground cover (Asian jasmine.)

            2. Dave

              Yeah but Donald is at least pointing out the problem and proposing tax and tariff measures to partially restore manufacturing jobs to the Rust Belt. Hillary offers platitudes and attacks on Donald as her solution to the Dispossessed Americans.

              1. Science Officer Smirnoff

                He proposes, but who disposes?

                If we had journalism instead of Poodledom there would be first a laying out of what are presidential powers—given the limited possibilities of who controls the other branches of government. And secondly, a replay of recent history of the two parties’ actions on the major issues affecting the common good (which admittedly doesn’t exist for libertarians and Thatcherites).

                The Republican party is almost a monolith on core doctrine. Let’s see Congressional Republicans move to upend the current trade regime or, indeed, give any indication.

                  1. Science Officer Smirnoff

                    May all the powers that be unleash you!

                    Punish all malefactors!

                    At least gr–ow—l.

            3. cwaltz

              Donald’s an actor. He doesn’t “feel” anyone’s pain.

              This is a guy whose daddy gave him a small loan of a million to start with, he’s never struggled in the same way those who have had to take minimum wage jobs to pay the bills have. He’s the same guy who blithely insists he’s smart for paying as little as possible in taxes. He’s the same guy who has a record of not treating his own workers well.

              Just because someone can identify a problem doesn’t mean they feel it’s impact or that they even care if they solve it. I’d argue a lot of the 1% know what problems we face but instead of helping us work to resolve those problems instead exploit them for their own gain.

              Heck Donald’s own words suggest that he is more than will to exploit American workers anger towards immigrants to win the election. Nice right?

              1. jgordon

                Then the fact that he’s still a much better candidate than Clinton ought to leave Democrats wondering what the hell their party is doing. They sure had to work hard to find someone who would lose to Trump.

                1. FluffytheObeseCat

                  Donald Trump is not a “much better candidate” than Clinton. More’s the pity. The Donald is a heel; a frivolous egotist who has screwed up many times over the decades. His money and showman’s cunning allowed him to prosper despite all the screw overs and screw ups. He’s been a heel for decades and there is no likelihood he’ll improve if he attains high office. Hillary Clinton — by contrast, not — is a supercilious elitist with more baggage than the cargo compartment of a fully loaded 747.

                  These 2 utterly wretched candidates do not cancel out each others’ flaws at all. They both stink like rotten meat. The Trump-cheerleading that now typifies this comments section is as pitiable as the slavish Hillary boosting crap that tars the pages of the New York Times.

                  1. Plenue

                    It’s not cheerleading. It’s the reasonable assessment that Trump MIGHT be a disaster, but Clinton WILL be a disaster.

                    1. sd

                      Trump is the hope vote….seriously, that’s what this f*cking election comes down to. It doesn’t get much more f*cking desperate than that.

                  2. jgordon

                    OK. You’re comparing a heel to a known mass murderer who took petty bribes to destroy entire countries. I don’t really understand how you arrived at your conclusion, but ok.

                    1. Andy

                      The real problem if Clinton gets in is, it’s going to be 8 years. Do you really think someone in the “Progressive” party(sic) will challenge her in 4 years…don’t think so.

                2. cwaltz

                  I don’t know who is advising Trump or even if he’s listening to anyone advising him.

                  However, someone should tell him he already has the guy vote. He NEEDS women and minorities to be peeled from her base.

                  His ridiculous ego is going to tank his campaign and than whether he’s a “better” candidate or not(and I’m not convinced he is) becomes a moot point.

                    1. different clue

                      Her numbers might even tank as fast as his numbers . . . after his latest round of emotional twitter diarrhea.

                3. jonboinAR

                  Well, the Repubs had about 12 candidates all lose to Donnie. It’s an “A pox on all their houses!” kind of year.

              2. clarky90

                Trump is a billionaire insider and expected to be treated fairly by the establishment. He wasn’t. Trump is a media star and expected to be treated fairly by the media. He was not.

                People change, but usually not willingly. I can tell you about my personal catastrophes if you like? You know, divorce, miscarried babies, health scares, lots of family and friends who have passed away, rotten PhD supervisor…… and plenty more. Change changes you. “Ad astra per aspira” my old high school motto. “To the stars through difficulties”

                My point is that “empathy” IMO, has not just fallen out of the sky for Donald Trump. (He is not acting) He is experiencing vicious, sustained discrimination, right now! And, it makes it possible for him to empathize with those who have been discriminated against for generations (poor whites, blacks, reds and yellows).

                Trump says that his constituents are having to work harder than ever, to stay in one place- Two jobs- lower real income than 12 years ago. Trumps also says that he has never worked so hard in his life. He is! There is no alternative for him.

                People can change for the better. I believe that Donald Trump has.

                1. cwaltz

                  Well I don’t.

                  Change requires that you admit your mistakes. All I see is a guy filled with hypocrisy from someone his weight calling someone Ms. Piggy, to someone who whines about offshoring while shifting his own products overseas(and no I don’t buy that a billionaire “has to” ship them there as much as he chooses to because…profit), to guy who calls himself smart for shifting the costs for the roads he drives on and all the services he enjoys onto others.

                  Trump has acknowledged the pain of others, he’s attempted to reach out across racial lines but despite these things I still see a guy who is full of himself and when push comes to shove puts himself before others. That isn’t a trait I want in a President(which is why Hillary is also a non starter for me.)

                2. different clue

                  Neither do I. I just ask myself the pragmatic root-survival question: which brand name President is more likely to start a war with Russia?
                  Which brand name President is less likely to start a war with Russia?
                  (And if one decides either one is equally likely to start a war with Russia, then one does something else for other reasons).

          2. Pat

            Hey get that straight, NBC paid her Six Hundred Thousand a year for the years she was there. And I apologize I was under the impression that her contract was allowed to lapse, but it was renewed once. They really were paying her for nothing after the first year…

            And don’t forget the various Boards she serves on, mostly Clinton entities.

          3. LeftHook

            Chelsea made $600k for that gig. Minor quibble, I know. What’s $100k amongst filthy lucre millionaires.

            1. Pavel

              Thanks Pat and LeftHook for the correction. But as LH points out, $100K is just pocket change for the Clintons… for them it is like the quarters and dimes and pennies one finds under the sofa cushions. After all, that’s only 20 minutes or so of HRC’s Goldman Sachs speech fees.

        2. Lee

          You and your son might want to think about the fact that extended families living together has been historically and still is the norm for many. My son works in the building trades and doesn’t make enough money to buy a house in our neighborhood. He has been living with me for several years and our relationship is very good. I am the son of a man who abandoned his own children, which perhaps accounts for my finding our arrangement particularly gratifying and take great pleasure in his company as well as that of his friends and lovers.

        3. DJG

          One of the things that caught my eye is how his life is partially circumscribed by our bad health-insurance system. So consider voting for Stein so that we can force the issue (a little).

          I think that rather than worrying himself into depression, he should try out what he really wants to do. So he wants to be come a haiku master? Give it a whirl. Does he want to go to Japan to study Japanese? Find an English-speaking doctor in Tokyo and launch him.

          I also suggest that he read Drawing Blood by Molly Crabapple, who was much involved in Occupy Wall Street. I am considerably older than she is, but I recognized her need to create her own career. She doesn’t mince words. Some of it is not for the squeamish. But it is a book about options.

          1. kareninca

            Good grief, how would voting for Stein help here???? She’s not going to win. If Hillary wins, she is not going to give a damn about how many people voted for Stein. The little I’ve read about Stein sounds appealing, sure, but so what.

            Also, I get the impression that the kid and family need the money he’s earning. Becoming a haiku master (except on off-work hours) may not be an economic option at all. It isn’t for most families in that situation anyway; even the marginal money brought in by a crappy job matters a lot.

            1. Yves Smith Post author

              Even though Lambert and I have complained vociferously about the Greens not acting remotely like a serious party, a Green vote signals support for a policy agenda to the left of the Democrats. That matters if the Green vote winds up being significant (5% or higher, which is awfully hard to attain given they aren’t on the ballot in all 50 states) and Hillary loses. It would be better if the Greens had their act together enough that they were outpolling the Libertarians, but that isn’t where we are.

        4. nothing but the truth

          same experience here.

          brilliant son in college, nothing out there at all except 711 jobs. the store he works and was on shift at got robbed twice on consecutive nights and i had to ask him to stop going there for his safety.

          it is sad sad sad how the future of the kids is being destroyed. the 0.01% have “arranged” sinecures for their kids and they dont care about our kids. Go into debt to get an education no one seems to need to pay overpaid professors and administrators at the university, and then carry that around your neck all your life.

        5. Carla

          @Desertmerf: vote for Greens not worthless. If they average 5% of the vote nationwide they will get matching funds in 2020. Please consider this and also spread the word.

          1. sunny129

            Vote for Greens or Libertarians is an indirect vote for Hillary!

            If these fringe parties want to become viable, they should put energy and time at the grass roots and NOT just before election time. Their policies should be reasonable and pragmatic for the 21st century. Just being ‘tree hugger’ goes nowhere!

            Right now, the SYSTEM(establishment) is rigged favoring Hillary. TRump is no saint but unpredictable as perceived by deep state and the MSM. What more damage he can do compared to Bush, Obama or the Hilabama. At least he is challenging the status quo and the establishment, unlike any other candidates in the past!

            I am vacillating about whom to vote. Bernie would have been my choice. Now Trump vote by default is a protest vote, against the rigged system. Not the best choice but I am fed up with status quo. It needs a jolt and now, only Trump can do that.

            1. cwaltz

              A vote for Greens is not a vote for Hillary. A vote for the Green candidate is a vote for the Green candidate.

              The GOP should have vetted someone who wasn’t a buffoon and who wasn’t going to treat minority populations with disdain and use their pain as a tool. In much the same way that the Democratic Party shouldn’t have ignored the pain of average Americans and rigged their primary for Hillary.

              You’re entitled to your own strategy for how to vote, however be gracious enough to let others have that same courtesy.

              1. Indrid Cold

                The GOPs idea of ‘vetting’ was the usual one this go-round: They gave a lot of media attention to the crazies like Rubio and Cruz and Trump. The way it always worked before was the media would then focus on the ‘grown-up’ or the ‘serious’ candidate. In this case it was JEB! The problem was Trump went off the reservation talking about things the Republican base actually cares about. And stole a lot of Bernie’s thunder since Bernie had a long list of no-go issues (we can rail against the banks but can’t actually do anything about them) It didn’t help that JEB! so obviously didn’t want the job. Maybe because he can see the trainwreck coming down the pike. For the same reason Trump ended the debate by shouting about the bubble economy. (When it wasn’t his turn, natch)

              2. sunny129


                How did I prevent or take yours or others’ right to comment or express their opinion, after I expressed mine, here?


                1. cwaltz

                  Your statement was a vote for the Greens is a vote for Hillary.

                  That’s an incorrect statement. A vote for the Greens is a vote for the Greens.

                  You may enact your eleventy dimensional chess strategy but don’t BS people into thinking that if they don’t enact your strategy that they are voting for someone they aren’t and if you make erroneous statements here expect to be called on it.

                  Any other questions I can help you with?

            2. neo-realist

              If these fringe parties want to become viable, they should put energy and time at the grass roots and NOT just before election time. Their policies should be reasonable and pragmatic for the 21st century. Just being ‘tree hugger’ goes nowhere!

              Yes, the thing with the Greens is, Nader and Stein tell us how corrupt and bought off by the corporations our government is, yet after every Presidential run, the Greens go into radio silence until the next presidential election. Nader nor Green do nothing to build the Greens brand up from the local level up through the national level by competing for city council seats or congressional seats to build the Party and its politics so that it can become a mainstream force for working people. They’re mostly nothing but a figurative middle finger to the system that crawls out every four years. What the hell has it accomplished in terms of broader change outside of a useless protest vote????

              1. Oregoncharles

                ” yet after every Presidential run, the Greens go into radio silence until the next presidential election. Nader nor Green do nothing to build the Greens brand up from the local level up through the national level by competing for city council seats or congressional seats ”

                This is a standard Democratic Party talking point, but it’s flat out false. Granted, i belong to one of the more active parties, but in fact most of our energy goes into local and congressional seats; the Presidency is an afterthought. We’ve had any number of city councillors and small-town mayors; this year Oregon Greens are running for 2 US House seats and the Senate, Sec. of State, several Oregon House seats, and a county commissioner seat – where we actually have a shot. Other states like New York, Illinois, and Cali have similar records.

                Furthermore, Jill Stein set up a Green Shadow Cabinet that kept up a stream of position statements throughout the last 4 years. If there’s “radio silence,” it’s because the MSM pretend we don’t exist. We haven’t run any reality show stars lately.

                That’s not to claim that it’s a legacy party. State parties are extremely uneven, as Lambert has pointed out, and some are missing (some states make it virtually impossible to get on the ballot.) A lot of typical party infrastructure, like GOTV operations, simply doesn’t exist. OTOH, if we WERE “acting remotely like a serious party”, meaning like the Democrats and Republicans, no one here would be considering voting for us.

                Anyway, the claim that we lie dormant between Presidential elections, just because YOU aren’t paying attention then, is a personal insult to those of us who work on politics every day.

            3. JCC

              Vote for Greens or Libertarians is an indirect vote for Hillary!

              I’m confused. According to HRC and her punditry class, a vote for Greens is an indirect vote for Trump.

              Some people need to make up their minds. Anyway, cwaltz is right, a vote for Stein is a vote for Stein, a vote for Johnson is a vote for Johnson.

              You are absolutely right about the Greens and Libertarians putting their energy and time into the grass roots year-round, election season or not. They don’t seem to get it, and as long as they don’t, we will be perpetually screwed until it all falls apart.

              I’m probably voting Green anyway. I just cannot bring myself to vote for either of these two prime candidates… but if I could hold my nose long enough to pull the trigger (so to speak) on either of the two Mainstream Parties, it sure would not be HRC and her war-mongering, 0.1% globalist, anti-deplorables, policies. Not that the Repubs aren’t of the same hive mind, but unlike HRC, at least Trump is a green bottle fly in the ointment.

              Still, though, at this time I don’t see how I could vote for either one. It will take a lot more than a few emails that do nothing but enforce HRC’s already known liabilities, or a mud-slinging event between Trump and Miss Universe.

          2. Elizabeth Burton

            “…vote for Greens not worthless. If they average 5% of the vote nationwide they will get matching funds in 2020. Please consider this and also spread the word.”

            And by 2020, if the Republicans gain control of all three branches of government, those “matching funds” will be a memory. I know I’m going to catch flack for this, but in the sense that too many of the younger voters have had an all but nonexistent education in political science, history and civics, Clinton is at least right on that score. I’ve seen it too often—and been attacked for trying to point out that election fraud and party corruption are not what we should be focused on now when the future of the republic is in jeopardy.

            How any intelligent human being can say, much less believe, that allowing Trump to be elected will “teach the Democrats” anything is beyond my comprehension. After all, it’s not as if anything that happens after that will affect them in any discernible way. It will be the poor and the elderly and the people of color who’ll bear the weight of a GOP-owned government.

            Paul Ryan went on record that if Trump is elected they’ll just ignore him and further the agenda hammered out for them by their Kochtopus overlords. Which is exactly what I have expected would be the case all along. This isn’t a damned game, but the more I hear the more it seems that’s how it’s being viewed, as if the final winner has no real-world relevance.

            1. lyman alpha blob

              Replace Trump’s name with Clinton’s in the first sentence of your last paragraph and you’ve got all the bases covered because the Democrats aren’t retaking Congress and none of Sanders’ policies that Clinton pretends to espouse are ever going to happen with her or Trump as president.

              We have Clinton actively courting Republican voters including prominent war criminals, Michelle Obama giving little Georgie a great big hug and if this isn’t enough to convince people that there isn’t much difference between the two major parties I don’t know what is.

              This is all kayfabe. As Emma Goldman said, if voting actually changed anything they’d have made it illegal a long time ago.

              1. sunny129

                Broad Trump support is a measure of just how disgusted a large part of the American population is, with our central government. The fact that he is so incredibly flawed, only reinforces that disgust. Clinton is the central government candidate.

              2. Pavel

                I can’t get that photo of Michelle hugging GWB out of my head alas. Obama’s greatest crime — literally, per international law — was not prosecuting Bush et al for torture.

                Bush 1 and 2, both Clintons, Obama: mass murderers each and every one of them.

            2. Science Officer Smirnoff

              Was it Grover Norquist who averred

              I’ve always said all the Republican Party needs is a dead man walking to sign Republican bills.


              He might add—“It’s what the nation needs and what it’s sleepwalking towards”.

              1. Mark P.

                Science Officer Smirnoff wrote: “It’s what the nation needs and what it’s sleepwalking towards”.

                Sounds similar to that old Mencken quote:

                We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron

            3. Oregoncharles

              The Page and Sigel study made it clear that, indeed, “the final winner has no real-world relevance.” Voting has little effect on policy; money does.

              Personally, I think that’s because people insist on chaining themselves to the 2-Party stocks. That might be wishful thinking, but there’s only one way to find out.

            4. different clue

              Someone should ask Ryan whether the GOP Congress will support the Clintonite program of violent regime change against Ukraine, Syria and elsewhere. Someone should ask Ryan whether the GOP Congress will push the Clintonite policy of seeking war with Russia.

              If so, then it makes little difference who the President is. If not, then it makes the difference between survival and extinction.

              Someone should really ask Ryan about that.

        6. Chris

          I hope your son does find what he’s looking for. I’m worried for my own children and what they will do too.

          What strikes me the most about stories like yours is how much luck factors into things. Graduating into a recession is horrible. Decisions that made sense 4 years prior to graduation suddenly seem irresponsible when the day comes to leave college.

          So much of my own career has benefitted from being in the right place at the right time, and I could only have been at this place at that time because I graduated when I did. Sure, I’ve hustled and taken advantage of opportunities too. I’ve always been willing to get dirty and do the things other people weren’t willing to do. But the fact is that I was in a position to do all of that because of many things that had nothing to do with how hard I worked, how smart I was, or what degrees I had. If I had been born a year later, graduated a year earlier, chosen a slightly different discipline… so many things would be different for me now. It’s one reason why I don’t complain too much about taxes.

        7. Jess

          Sounds like you’ve raised a wonderful young man. Too bad he is a victim of our horribly perverted and distorted political-economic system. Hope that something breaks his way soon.

        8. jonboinAR

          Yeah, what the guy above me said. My daughter and her family all live with us. It’s just what we have to do nowadays. The only thing that hurts is someone’s pride, perhaps sometimes. There’s no real hardship, otherwise. Tell your son to hang tight.

        9. different clue

          There are other options besides Stein or leaving it blank. There is Trump . . . or Johnson . . . or Write Sanders In . . . or possibly even some deeply obscure 4th or 5th Parties on your ballot.

          If your son doesn’t read Naked Capitalism, perhaps you could get him to start reading it. He might see that he is living the reality deliberately engineered for him and millions of other young people deliberately and with malice aforethought by the OverClass and its supporters in and out of government. If he comes to understand that thoroughly enough, he may stop feeling this is “his fault” and may stop being embarrassed about taking necessary help and may be prevented from getting depression.

    2. Alex morfesis

      I’m with her…but she hates me…what’s a bernie bro to be…with an atlas shrugged and some snark from me to you…sadly donalds loony too…

      Wish my favorite kanukistani Bonnie McFarlane would do a number on these evil of two lessers…but she might get thrown out of the not roasting in hell club by the beautiful maddie Albright…

        1. Steve H.

          “The Real True News
          On the web & live: We take daily news stories and twist them till they’re hilarious.”

        2. Kulantan

          Not saying that it’s not true, but it has more than a few warning signs of being propaganda cooked up by one of the aforementioned Trump Memesters.

          It’s a short read which establishes means, motive, opportunity and context as though it was a spy thriller. I mean if this is supposed to be Correct the Record’s internal chat, wouldn’t they already be familiar with the structure of the “Trump Memesters”. Why would it need to be explained as though it was exposition in a Bond film?

          It also presents the Clinton Camp as panicking over her debate performance. In no other analysis I’ve read does anyone say Trump made Clinton “look like a girl”. Nothing I’ve seen suggests that the debate would have panicked the Clintons’ enough to have 1000 internet memesters murdered. But it is a good narrative if you’re trying to produce a Trump propaganda spy thriller.

          Finally there is the inclusion of the detail of pizza ordering. There is quite a big deal made of how Brock likes We the Pizza. While I suspect this is probably true, it smells to me like a publically verifiable fact to lend verisimilitude to the narrative. If you we’re trying to write a piece of propaganda, all that this was missing was some verifiable facts and the pizza at the end feels like exactly that.

          I’m with Lambert in being highly skeptical of digital “evidence”.

        3. Lambert Strether

          I’d like to see some track record for the dodgy source. And — granting this is at the Spidey Sense level — I don’t like the prose. Something seems off. And I’m not sure the worker bees at the NSA would be happy with this, any more than the worker bees at the FBI were happy with Comey.

    3. Benedict@Large

      There’s a segment in the extended version where she talks about ObamaCare getting costs down. There is nothing in ObamaCare to keep costs down, and there was never meant to be, yet Hillary remains oblivious to this.

      [See “An Interview with Tom Buchmueller“. Buchmueller, a faculty member of the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business who served on President Obama’s Council of Economic Advisors, claims that ObamaCare’s only leverage on pricing comes by expanding enrollment, thus forcing prices (and the resulting political pressure for cost control) upwards.]

      1. Pat

        In a rush to judgment, I decided Clinton did not understand ACA when she said its problems could be addressed with incremental changes. Nice to have proof this is one more area the self proclaimed policy wonk is unaware of the details of the policy and its effects.

        1. Stephen Gardner

          Don’t confuse her awareness with her propaganda talking points. She is perfectly aware of what ACA is for and she is glad. Does she want us to share her awareness? No.

          1. Pat

            I agree she understands its true purpose. Where I differ is that I don’t for a moment belief that either Clinton or Obama have a clue what is really in that law or what its true effect would be over time. I think it of it this way – both of them understood the true purpose of overthrowing Qaddafi, neither of them or the architects of that strategy began to understand that it would not just continue to destabilize the region it would destabilize Europe. Do you think either of them recognized that forcing people to buy garbage insurance with no health care attached in order to entrench insurance companies was going to significantly help their opponents? Endanger Clinton’s election? Or that it might not last long enough for the opening of the Obama library because the sheer weight of it was unsustainable?
            True, they don’t care, but it also shows how stupid not caring is.

            1. Romancing The Loan

              I don’t think they cared if it helped their “opponents.” Remaining in power is less important than the payout afterwards – I think they just don’t think in the long term because the short term is good enough for their purposes.

            2. Kurt Sperry

              Amen. These so-called “best and brightest” like Clinton and Obama are not only morally bankrupt, the awful truth is they are also obviously poorly informed and self-evidently not very bright either. Obama could, in fact, be almost the definition of the “empty suit”. Look at who goes onto the success track out of the Ivies, if it isn’t legacy offspring dimbulbs likeChelsea, it’s frequently superficially articulate suck-ups who can be trusted to faithfully and unquestioningly follow orders and has almost an inverse relationship with objective merit of the sort we are sold.


              1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

                I was ahead of the curve and saw that the fix was in before Obama’s inauguration, boy that was an unpopular stance. Then I went through a long internal debate: is he stupid or is he evil? I chose “stupid” for quite a while, giving the benefit of the doubt, I just *wanted to believe* that Lucy would not pull the football away at the last minute this time around.

                I no longer entertain any such illusions, Hilary and Obama know full well what the consequences of their actions are, all the way from Yemen to Minnesota health insurers. Obama is working toward a sexy retirement golfing with billionaires and raising funds for his Library, as for Hilary, her lust for pure unbridled power for its own sake knows no bounds. From the hallowed halls of Goldman Sachs to the board room at Monsanto, Hilary knows *precisely* where she can get the funds to satisfy her blood and power lusts.

            3. Mark P.

              ‘but it also shows how stupid not caring is.’


              Except of course tomorrow keeps on coming.

        2. apber

          ACA was always first about “control” over the debt slaves, and second as an integral part of Obama’s marxist Cloward-Piven strategy to bankrupt the nation and destroy the middle class. It was designed to fail.

            1. different clue

              Anything to save the “he’s a Marxist” narrative which some people still cling to.

    4. Pat

      Funny how that leaked in a week where Clinton, and the Obamas were busy explaining political reality according to the usual suspects to those same basement dwellers. You know the one where any vote not for Clinton was automatically the same as voting for Trump, and voters couldn’t really do that because Hillary was not perfect. But now we have proof that Clinton isn’t just “not perfect” she isn’t even interested in the concerns of those voters the entitled turds were lecturing.

    5. nycTerrierist

      Yeah, it’s not a crap job market it’s a ‘mindset’.

      The part would be a great ad for Jill Stein.

      Dog help us if we have to hear this crap for 4 years.

      1. jgordon

        Well according to Hillary and Obama a vote for Jill Stein is the same as a vote against Hillary. Then that means that a vote for Trump is like two votes against Hillary! Think about it.

          1. different clue

            The downside is a higher chance of Trump becoming President. But the upside would be a higher chance of Clinton NOT becoming President.

            So the question is . . . is electing Trump a “deeper down” than defeating Clinton is a “higher up”.

        1. Massinissa

          That may be true, but you forget that those two votes against Hillary also comes with a vote for Trump. No thanks, one vote against Hillary is enough for me.

    6. justanotherprogressive

      Well, her leaked audio fits in with her new plan to give all those “basement dwellers” something to do – that National Service Reserve thing……
      But yea, all you stupid millennials – get off the couch and vote for Hillary because she told you to!! And then get off her lawn!

    7. jrs

      Uh I don’t even see what is so bad about anything she says at least in the clip (maybe I’m missing some larger context). Otherwise much ado about nothing. Look I’m not a fan of Hillary’s policies, it’s unlikely I’d vote for Hillary but … really … mountains out of molehills. It’s like Trump’s comment about how it might be a 400 pound person who hacked the DNC and suddenly it’s a fat person’s rights issue or something, and frankly his statement was more offensive than this, only in context it was a common throwaway nerd stereotype in the face of Hillary falsely blaming a nuclear power.

      But no not everyone who has been in an election or more knows any history is bewildered. When times are bad the choice is always go left or go right. And go right always ends in disaster, but if going left is blocked, it’s exactly what people will do even so. The way to avoid that it to keep the left alive, but the ruling class will risk the hard right over going left every time.

      Free health care of course is not “going as far as Scandinavia” but is what every developed country on earth has pretty much except the U.S.. So yes it’s offensive if one imagined Hillary was for single payer, but did anyone seriously think this? It is not like she has campaigned on it.

      1. jgordon

        OK, if you don’t see it, you don’t see it. Just take my word for it then: whatever slim chance Hillary had to win just went out the window. Other than that it’s not a big deal.

        1. cwaltz

          Uh that only happens if someone manages to duct tape Trump’s mouth shut.

          Trump’s got his own brand of offensive and apparently his goal this week was to alienate female voters even more with his antics.

          I hear that at the next debate his big idea is to blame Hillary for Bill’s wandering penis. That should go over like a lead balloon(because believe it or not women don’t like to be blamed for the times men act like dogs.)

          1. jgordon

            I have noticed a pattern with you where you are misconstruing Trump’s positions and framing his behaviour as the corrupt media wishes you to frame it. Trump is not great, but he’s also not nearly as awful as you’re thinking he is. Don’t be so influenced by the propaganda coming from Hillary and her devoted lackeys in the MSM.

            1. cwaltz

              Spare me, I’m misconstruing nothing.

              You want to run on the fact the guy has no public record per se(Look! He didn’t bomb anybody! Yeah, that’s probably because he didn’t have the means to do so either.). That’s great. However, he does have a very real past and I refuse to wallpaper over that past. It’s completely unacceptable and unprofessional to call your employees Miss Piggy. Acknowledge it. Move on.

              1. Skippy

                Obama was a community developer before POTUS….

                Seems the whole argument about before and after wrt war and stuff is quite spurious….

                Disheveled Marsupial…. They do like thinking it matters…. eh cwaltz

              2. jgordon

                He has a past of being a boorish loudmouth braggart. How terrible! And he’s not even as bad as Hillary’s media flunkies are making him out as.

                His opponent in the other hand is an amoral criminal and vicious mass murderer. What is stunnuning is that somehow Hillary and the media have altered reality to the extent that somehow these two histories are equivalent in some people’s minds.

                1. Skippy


                  Like I said Obama… Obama had almost no track record outside the usual sleazy Chicago politics…. and now look at his record.

                  I don’t know…. ummm…. would it be better to completely destroy the clown car that is the GOP [the tattered remnants El’Trumpo has left] once and for all, leaving the real Republican party that is the Dems, standing out in stark contrast once the GOP is gone.

                  Then it might be possible to allow space for a more traditional left party to grow and flourish.

                  Disheveled Marsupial…. you might consider how some scratch their heads about others going na na…. in making out El’Trumpo as something you can’t… because judging someone before they enter the oval office is a mugs game…

              3. Yves Smith Post author

                I hate to tell you but I had a major NYC developer/syndicator as a client who should have been in the Forbes 400 back then and was delighted they hadn’t found him yet. He was just as loutish, respected my work, paid on time and had a gay guy as his right hand man (totally underheard of in NYC RE, it is one of the most homophobic businesses there is).

                The Donald is a NY real estate guy plus from Queens. Remember Archie Bunker? He’s a rich Archie Bunker. He has women construction managers. That’s also unheard of in NYC.

                The other reason I’m not as exercised as you are is that I have worked all my career in male dominated environments, including ones that are notably unfriendly to women (Wall Street and corporate Japan). I find open misogyny a lot easier to deal with that the closeted sort you find at firms where every goes through the ritual of pretending to treat women fairly but systematically pay them less and don’t promote them. On Wall Street, Salomon and Bear were famously more crude than the white shoe firms, but they put women in influential positions earlier than Goldman and Morgan Stanley did.

                Now I agree that he should have the maturity and emotional self discipline to distance himself from his earlier conduct, as Arnold Schwarznegger did of far worse allegations (groping women on sets and pressuring them to have sex with him in his early acting days). And I know someone personally who regularly worked for Donald (he had hair and makeup artists regularly up to his apartment to pretty up models for The Apprentice or other promotions). She said she hates the crazy stuff he is saying but he treated her well and she never heard of anyone in the large group who’d work for him in that capacity ever having a problem, and he did her an important favor (hired her emotionally unstable son in one of his Trump Tower restaurants).

                So to me, what is disturbing about his crass comments is not his crass comments, since there is a some evidence that he does not treat women who work for him badly (and notice no one has ever accused him of sexual harassment, despite his clear fondness for hot women). What is bothersome is they reveal a lack of personal self discipline, that he seems incapable of acting like a grown up and not indulging his terrible impulses.

                1. cwaltz

                  I find him as a whole pretty repellant up to and including his crassness, his lack of self discipline and his hypocrisy

                  For the record, joined the Navy back in 1986 before they were allowing women on most ships and limited those of us who entered, so I’ve had my fair share of dealing with masculine posturing and misogyny. I don’t want to see it considered acceptable and electing someone who not only won’t apologize for it but makes excuses for it is not something I want to see happen.

                  1. aab

                    I don’t want that, either. But a more polite Trump would probably have meant Clinton vs. Bush.

                    Like it or not, Trump is the guy who figured out how to get past the insiders. So now it’s going to be him, or a warmonger who facilitated systemic rape, sexual assault and sexual harassment by her spouse. So we’re back to “Trump talks worse, Clintons act worse.”

                    I realize you’re voting third party. I will, as well, unless Trump closes in California. But I don’t see any point in pretending we’re not getting either Trump or Clinton in the end. I have no expectation of being happy with a Trump presidency. It’s that the alternative is so much worse.

          2. Romancing The Loan

            Oh like anyone is left who wasn’t already aware that Trump’s a misogynist gasbag.

            As a female voter I don’t give a crap how bad he is, I’d still rather watch Congress go nuts impeaching him than I would Hillary taking us to war with Russia.

            1. cwaltz

              You’re more than entitled to vote for the “lesser evil”, just be aware of what you’re voting for- evil.

          3. Pat

            Funnily enough if this election were being fought on the coasts I might think you had something. But right now these candidates are fighting for the battleground states, and for those it is all about the loss of opportunity, status and having to hang on by their fingernails. Here’s the thing, Trump’s misogyny was old news. He is just confirming that. People who weren’t going to vote for him there because of that, probably had already decided that. But the people scared about Trump who were trying to convince themselves that Clinton really did have their backs and that those trust issues were overblown are going to realize she doesn’t and it isn’t. They are going to know she still doesn’t get how bad it is outside her bubble. Add that to the fact that Republican registration is up and Democratic registration is at best even in those areas and I think you may be underestimating how bad this is for Clinton and overestimating how bad it is for Trump.

            Is it going to be enough to make Trump President? Hell I don’t know. I’ve said all along this one was going to be a squeaker and nothing I have seen in the last week makes me think any different. What I do know is those glowing polls that were released on Friday that still really don’t have her that far ahead of the margin of error are out the window today. It is all going to come down to whose rock bottom base turns out. Clinton has the machine, but what little enthusiasm there is is all on Trump’s side. Every thing that happens can throw one or the other for a loop. And October has just begun.

            1. cwaltz

              Perhaps it’s “old news” for people who might not be impacted by it in the same way racism isn’t “old news” for those who might be impacted by it.

              Trump needs females to not consider him a threat. He, at the very least, needs them not to care enough about this election to stay home. Antagonizing women when you are in a squeaker of an election is not good strategy.

              1. jgordon

                It’s not going to take much effort for Trump to make the case that Hillary is more of a threat to women than Trump is. I’m interested so I’ve been looking. The dirt that’s out on Hillary about her treatment of women is extremely bad; it just needs to be publicized slightly better. To non partisans Trump is going to come off as seeming less scary to women than Hillary. LOTE voters will be swinging to Trump if this issue is important to them.

                1. cwaltz

                  I think you’re overestimating your candidate.

                  I also think if he goes there with blaming Hillary for Bill’s wandering penis then he’s going to lose.

                  He needs to pound her on HER record, not on the fact that Bill is a philandering dirtbag.

                  Unfortunately, I don’t see him doing that.

                  1. NotTimothyGeithner

                    I saw a bit of a twitter discussion about the Lewinsky saga, and one thought was that the 90’s were an absurdly shallow period where tech stocks were all the rage and the story became one of consenting adults instead of a superior abusing power against an intern. A Republican connected to that period might have a problem because of the likes of Hastert and the length of the proceedings, but Trump isn’t connected to them.

                    Given poor and abusive working environment today, bringing up Lewinsky wouldn’t be seen as a “Remember the 90’s” blooper reel.

                    1. cwaltz

                      I think you mean Newt, not Hastert.

                      Although the optics if Trump goes there isn’t going to be pretty since he also cheated on his spouse.

                      Quite frankly the only way Trump wins is by pushing the issues.

                      His attempts at character assassination are going to backfire because his character is less than sterling as well.

                    2. different clue

                      And his latest episode of twittarrhea will re-raise the question of whether he is smart enough to do that.

                    3. NotTimothyGeithner

                      I meant Hastert. The problem isn’t adultery between consenting adults but power relationships. It doesn’t matter if Lewinsky wanted her Presidential knee pads as Senator Cleland out it. What matters is she was an intern underneath the President. Newt cheated but with fellow adults on relatively equal power levels.

                      I think young people are keenly aware of the difference.

      2. Waldenpond

        After all we’ve (1%) done? for those educated? basement living? baristas?!!

        Each one of those is problematic (based on memes mocking millenials) not to mention she’s doing it in a room of 1%ers. The rich flat out mocking the people they victimize is not going to go over well. Her statements are worse than Rmoney’s 47% garbage. MSM can ignore it, which takes care of half the citizenry but the other half is on-line.

    8. BillC

      Beyond a tone-deafness in self-expression that’s astonishing for an experienced politician (even if she did not expect the statement to become public), I find it amazing that there is not even a hint of the thought, “well, maybe there’s something about our economy that we need to adjust.” It’s clear that the only adjustment HRC feels necessary is citizens’ expectations of their future in the USA. This person is not fit for public service at any level. I hope every voter who’s thinking of voting for her listens carefully to exactly what she said here and ponders what it reveals about her assessment of the challenges we face.

      1. jrs

        It’s unclear what people just don’t understand about Scandinavia. Higher taxes? Yea it’s true people might balk at Scandinavian level taxes, however at the actual point in the continuum the U.S. actually exists in, I think a lot of people would trade higher taxes for the benefits of a welfare state (not dealing with insurance companies, not facing poverty in old age – and hey paid sick time and paid 6 week vacations).

        1. Lee

          When I was in the insurance biz I met a Swedish woman who was an up and coming exec in the company. She had been a school teacher in Sweden and had moved to the U.S. to earn more and pay less taxes. Her plan, once she had made her pile, was to move back to Sweden explaining, “because I would never want to be old in America.”

          1. OIFVet

            So she wants the benefits of the welfare state, but she refused to pay for it. Seems fare to me.

        2. Bas

          What Americans don’t understand about Scandinavia is that those countries don’t have a bloated military – or any military really – to protect their ‘exorbitant privilege’.

          An Empire cannot be a welfare state, and vice versa.

          1. jrs

            Maybe not super generous, but the U.S. medical system already costs more than single payer, so there is more than that going on than just “can’t afford it”. I have often though the citizens of an empire must be kept in abject poverty, so they don’t get to questioning the empire thing (maybe they learned from Vietnam).

            1. Bas

              An Empire’s priorities are usually not with the welfare and general well-being of its citizenry.

              In fact its population can best be kept in a precarious state in order to lower labor costs, limit social demands and, or course, fill the lower military ranks.

              1. JCC

                I’m not sure that this is true. Empire’s priorities are with the welfare and well-being of its citizenry. Without the citizenry, the Empire cannot exist.

                The problem is that over time, as the costs increase and the Empire becomes top-heavy, it depends more and more on stories, legends, and propaganda and makes the assumption that the general internal welfare is fine even though internal resources are getting sucked up more and more and trade-offs are made in support of expansion over the citizenry

                Because of these assumptions it only looks closely at the internal welfare when bad things start happening more frequently like sporadic internal riots or fires of one sort or another.

                Then the Empire initially depends on the same stories, legends and propaganda and maybe a little extra – not too much considering the costs of Empire – just enough, maybe slightly more than it can afford, to quell those internal flare-ups. The US in the 60’s was a good example, I think.

                Eventually the time will come when internal flare-ups happen faster than the Empire can anticipate or handle them. Over time, if the costs of Empire start to outweigh the benefits of Empire and the resources to handle internal flare-ups become scarce, as seems to be happening now for multiple different reasons that we’re all familiar with, then the Empire starts collapsing.

                We’re not there yet, but most are starting to feel that we’re getting close, particularly considering the overtly blind leadership choices nowadays.

            2. jonboinAR

              I think it’s mainly about the owners getting “theirs”, that is, a share of all of our wages.

    9. Antifa

      Quite a revealing mindset on Hillary’s part. Reminds me of Romney dismissing 47% of the population as free riders.

      As Hillary derides those who think we ought to be more like Scandinavia, with free college, free national health care, what she isn’t making clear is that America the nation is paying more military money than most of the rest of the world combined. In her mindset, we are the Global Police, and if that $791 billion of military spending reduces us to recession, unaffordable college, unaffordable medical care, and a few dozen people owning over half of all the assets in a nation of 300 million, well that’s the price of being the Good Guys.

      This brings up a new (old) definition of nationalism; the simple idea that you take care of your own people and infrastructure first, and that your military expenses are only for defensive purposes — not for establishing 800+ military bases all over the world, and dividing the entire globe into theaters of war. That’s what our military and political leaders have done, following the wishes of the very, very few ultra wealthy who make billions every year off this system.

      A nation, any nation, has no more precious and priceless resource than the minds of its young people. The health and wellbeing of its young people. Where do they think the citizens of coming decades are going to come from? Some other country?

      America the nation is dying because America’s Empire is pulling up the floorboards and chopping up the furniture to feed the flames of endless wars around the world, wars which accomplish nothing for America but poverty of its citizens. We need voters and political leaders who will stand against America’s Empire, who will dismantle it and return our attention to becoming a leading nation among nations, not Number One in arms sales, not Number One in blood spilled, not Number One in war crimes.

      1. fresno dan

        October 1, 2016 at 11:09 am

        “Where do they think the citizens of coming decades are going to come from? Some other country?”
        very minor edits – “people” change to “fodder”, and yes, people/fodder from other countries provide a limitless supply…

      2. anon y'mouse

        A nation, any nation, has no more precious and priceless resource than the minds of its young people. The health and wellbeing of its young people. Where do they think the citizens of coming decades are going to come from? Some other country?

        yes, some other country. india, china, the phillipines, vietnam. this country has been set up to do the great “brain drain” on the rest of the world.

        a few years ago while linksurfing, i found a quote that was very revealing about the mindset of “our betters”. i am sorry i can’t remember anything about the quote other than a paraphrase of what it meant, but it was convincing and explained so much about how they view us at the time, that although i couldn’t go back there and find it again (that link was saved 3 computers ago now), i have remembered it ever since.

        the theory among at least some of our ruling class goes like this: americans who haven’t made it already in this “land of opportunity” are lost causes, not worth investing in. immigrants, on the other hand, come here to exploit all that our country has to offer and make great strides within the first 2 generations to hit our soil. by the third generation or so, the striving immigrant mentality has largely been replaced with generic “americanism” and those people are probably not going to move up, but they are already doctors, lawyers and accountants so they can keep running things. we can just keep bringing in new immigrants to take advantage of the energy they provide to our economy, their desire to get ahead being a blessing to us as they apply their wits, thrift, go-getter self-starterism to our businesses in their goal to make it to a comfortable, middle class life.

        so yes, the plan is for the americans of the future to come from somewhere else. has the added advantage of brain draining all of our former colonies/places we have screwed up with destabilization, war, fostering dictatorships, etc. you can see the product of this very mentality at large in California right now, and have been able to for the past 30 years there if you really were looking.

    10. flora

      wow…… clueless in bubble-land. So a bad economy for most (since 2008 at least) and poor job prospects for most is a matter of “mind set” ? Oh, if only the young did positive thinking. That would fix everything.
      What this tells me about Hillary is she thinks the economy is fine, thinks the current economic policies and trade deals are fine, and has no intention of changing anything. For her, the current economic situation is the best of all possible worlds. If people can’t find decent jobs it’s their own fault. Her audio clip sounds like Mitt Romney’s 47 percent comment: “And so my job is not to worry about those people — I’ll never convince them that they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.” – Romeny

      Hillary is the new Mitt?

      1. Dave

        “What this tells me about Hillary is she thinks the economy is fine, thinks the current economic policies and trade deals are fine, and has no intention of changing anything. For her, the current economic situation is the best of all possible worlds.”

        This is why the concept of a Buy Nothing Month in October is being mentioned as a means of passive protest. No discretionary purchases. Cash only for essentials to hammer Wells Fargo and the credit card tapeworms in the economy.

        1. Romancing The Loan

          Most people are already down to essentials, and those who aren’t likely agree with Hillary or don’t see why they should suffer more for a very tenuous possibility of doing mild harm to their tormentors.

        2. Ivy

          So that means that we’ll have to let lapse our subscriptions to Martha’s Vineyard on $10,000 a Day and Hamptons Monthly? Think of the staff to be let go, and who will pay their mental health mindset co-pays?

      2. anti-social socialist

        CLINTON: Some are new to politics completely. They’re children of the Great Recession. And they are living in their parents’ basement. They feel they got their education and the jobs that are available to them are not at all what they envisioned for themselves. And they don’t see much of a future. I met with a group of young black millennials today and you know one of the young women said, “You know, none of us feel that we have the job that we should have gotten out of college. And we don’t believe the job market is going to give us much of a chance.” So that is a mindset that is really affecting their politics. And so if you’re feeling like you’re consigned to, you know, being a barista, or you know, some other job that doesn’t pay a lot, and doesn’t have some other ladder of opportunity attached to it, then the idea that maybe, just maybe, you could be part of a political revolution is pretty appealing. So I think we should all be really understanding of that and should try to do the best we can not to be, you know, a wet blanket on idealism. We want people to be idealistic. We want them to set big goals. But to take what we can achieve now and try to present them as bigger goals.

        Can you point me to the equivalent of either “it’s their own damn fault” or “I’ll never convince them that they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives?”

        Otherwise, the comparison to Romney? Not so much.

        1. witters

          So “we should be really understanding” is the policy move here? I presume you must think yourself one of that “we”. Glad to know that behind the 1% there is a fund of “understanding” which they are willing to lavish on the rest of us. Wonder what interest rate they will charge?

        2. JCC

          Here, lemme fix it for her:

          We know health insurance is mandated, expensive and has high deductibles, so for those of you living in your parents’ basement just keep sucking off Mom and Dad’s insurance or go without and pay the penalty instead. We know Obama created 14 million jobs, most in the service economy with low pay and/or part time. We know during the same period we graduated 23 million people with baccalaureate degrees, not to mention all those over the same period that we graduated with Associate Degrees, Trade School Certs and non-college age kids looking for jobs, but we have to go slow and tread lightly around Wall St., Trade Agreements, Corporate America Tax Relief, and the Pentagon Spending Programs.

          And of course, we feel your pain. We know you don’t see much of a future. We know you have no way to discharge unpayable debt and that you can’t afford high insurance premiums. But forget any kind of a revolutionary change, incremental change is all we have and all you’re going to get, but we’ll present them as bigger goals… because we feel your pain.

          And, hey, there’s always the military if you don’t like your parents’ basement. I’ll make sure they will be hiring

          But don’t misunderstand me, Trump doesn’t have much to fix it either, other than a Wall.

        3. Waldenpond

          Listen to the tape. This is a room of wealthy people. You are skipping the condescension and the laughter and how she responds and what you are referencing is only one portion. You are leaving out little gems like ‘what we’ve done’ in a room of wealthy people. She’s equating voters on the left with those she views as irredeemable deplorables on the right that she has made clear she has nothing but contempt for.

          She is saying that it’s their fault…. children, naive, feel (their experience is somehow not reality), not what they envisioned for themselves, mindset (again, an emotion, not reality), feeling, barista, doesn’t have a ladder of opportunity, wet blanket on idealism.

        4. Lambert Strether

          It’s all about feelings. Not about policy. Here’s the key part you didn’t quote, also about feelings:

          And on the other side, there’s just a deep desire to believe that we can have free college, free healthcare, that what we’ve [who?] done hasn’t gone far enough, and that we just need to, you know, go as far as, you know, Scandinavia, whatever that means, and half the people don’t know what that means, but it’s something that they deeply feel.

          Canada has “free” health care (at the point of care). Ditto Germany “free education.” And Clinton, with her usual boundless effrontery, erases those facts while simultaneously saying she doesn’t want to be “a wet blanket on idealism.” Just amazing. And all the while smearing this same population as racist and sexist Bros.

          1. BecauseTradition

            Speaking of free stuff:
            1) The accounts of depository institutions at the Fed are more than free; they are paid interest!
            2) The premiums for deposit insurance surely don’t cover systemic risk since that is uninsurable.

            We’ve got plenty of free stuff for the banks and rich including positive interest on risk-free sovereign debt.

            Glass houses and stones, Hillary …

          2. anti-social socialist

            And all the while smearing this same population as racist and sexist Bros.

            HRC is doing this? Where?

    11. Buttinsky

      Poor, brave Hillary — trapped between the Deplorables and the Basement Dwellers (presumably on their way to becoming the Morlocks and the Eloi). What I find hysterical is the way she depicts herself as the sane one in a world gone mad.


    12. anti-social scientist

      It wasn’t “leaked,” and she wasn’t mocking Sanders supporters. That is all.

      1. Yves Smith Post author

        She called grown adults “children” at the very top and hammered that in by saying they are living in their parents’ basements, as in dependents, not capable of getting on with their lives, misfits. So their unhappiness is simply a reflection of them being losers who need to suck it up.

        The contempt is thick and obvious. Everyone sees it but you, which says you have a vested interest in not seeing it.

          1. marym

            Clinton doesn’t support the goal of comprehensive, universal, publicly funded healthcare, or publicly funded higher education; and she supports neoliberal economic policies which devastate the domestic job market on behalf of the 1%. Whether you interpret her remarks as condescending “empathy” or blame-the-victim disdain, she’s not on the side of the people she is describing.

          2. Pat

            Empathy, that’s friggin’ empathy in Clinton’s world!?!?!?! And she continues to wonder why she isn’t 50 points ahead. That isn’t empathy. Anybody calling it ’empathy’ is lying their teeth off. Sanders gives her too much cover by acknowledging that she was correct that many of his supporters were young people who have been hit as hard by a rigged neoliberal economic system as the rust belt has been, but apparently he couldn’t bring himself to lie that much for the entitled turd.

            Clinton isn’t being empathetic she is being insulting. Let’s give an actor Clinton’s daughter’s expensive CV, minus a couple of give away entries like the Boards of Clinton charities and the NBC gig, and see how many interviews and/or job offers they get. Want to make a bet Chelsea would be living in her parents basement if her last name wasn’t Clinton? Oh, wait in many ways she is – see where most of her income comes from AND the influence that was spent by the Clintons for her husband’s failed hedge fund. But because so many other graduates don’t have those ‘advantages’, she calls THEM unrealistic. And she offers solutions that aren’t solutions and many times if you look closely are really just more forms of rent extraction.

            I despise these people, and I’m growing to despise the people who misrepresent them, what they say and what they do – including Sanders, almost as much.

            1. JTFaraday

              Chelsea does live in her parent’s basement. It’s just a lot nicer than yours.

              Also, saving money is a privilege. Not everyone has a basement.

  4. geoffrey gray

    obama in his speech at shimon peres funeral put him in the same category as mandela. it should be remembered that peres was the father of israel’s nuke program and was selling nukes to south africa when mandela was in jail. oops, too much reality.

    1. ambrit

      This really cements Obama’s status as “Clueless B.”
      If nothing else, this shows clearly the mans contempt for black Africans.

      1. Barmitt O'Bamney

        Says a lot about “special relationships”, as well, that Mags Thatcher didn’t rate a half staff salute from Pres. Obama but Shimon Peres does. Now I hates me some Mags, but one can’t help noticing these things! Oh but, Shimon Peres was an esteemed partner for peace (yeah right, the peace of the grave maybe…)

        1. John Zelnicker

          @Barmitt O”Bamney – Well, he did help create a framework for a two state solution with Yitzhak Rabin and Yasser Arafat, even though it never came to fruition.

      2. Stephen Gardner

        Clueless? You really think so? I think he knows exactly what he has to say to ingratiate himself to the people who matter. Truth doesn’t enter into the calculation.

  5. optimader

    Court Stops U.S. Fish & Wildlife from Killing Wild Red Wolves EcoWatch (furzy)

    WTF with the courts?
    So how ever could WRWolves be expected to practice birth control w/o a Fed agency shoving it’s nose in the matter? I mean they’ve only been around in NAmerica for what, 750,000 years?

    Thank goodness we have a agency available to assassinate them!

    1. different clue

      It seemed strange to me that Fish and Wildlife would be devoted to exterminating a rare species. But then I realized that Fish and Wildlife might be full of the Reagan-Bush type of embeds that Reagan and Bush ( Junior) each had 8 years to inject into Fish and Wildlife.

  6. Benedict@Large

    USA TODAY exclusive: Hundreds allege Donald Trump doesn’t pay his bills

    I was in Atlantic City (on a long term, non-casino consulting contract) during Trump’s first casino bankruptcy, and according to the locals I worked with then, Trump took thousands of small private contractors into bankruptcy with him. So this story that Trump doesn’t pay his bills goes back at least 30 years, but to tell the truth, no one who was anyone gave a damn about it back then.

    No one gave a damn about it back then because it was just little people who got hurt. Now it’s a different story. Now the Democratic princess can use the story to lever her way into the White House, so now it’s a big story. A really big story. Now we all have to know about it. But not when it was about the little people.

    Have I told you lately how much I hate these people?

    1. ambrit

      The tell to me that establishes that what Trump did was socialized into the business society is that no one tried to have Trump ‘whacked’ over this.

    2. optimader

      Trump took thousands of small private contractors into bankruptcy with him
      Thousands/? how is that even possible?

      Was anyone holding a gun to their heads to do bususiness with him, his brand licencees or whomever the heck was actually holding the financial bag?

      What puzzles me is that watched a second generation auger in a longstanding commercial building contracting firm in under three years due to stiffing subs. That behavior as a business practice makes one radioactive in the trades rather quickly.

    3. nippersdad

      I had read somewhere a while back that his projects in Atlantic City were managed through Mafia connections. That may not be the case, but it would explain why there was so little blowback at the time.

      1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

        What is infuriating is that this is an attack on Donald’s “character”. If we’re going to have a policy-free campaign, where we decide not to talk about world war, bank crime, health care disasters, trade deals, campaign finance, inequality, and Fed policy, then maybe just maybe we could also spend 5 minutes on the “character” of Trump’s opponent?

        1. nippersdad


          DCJ was bringing up his research into Trump’s past; Clinton really wasn’t his topic du jour here. In light of his other writings, I doubt that he thinks much more highly of her than most of us do.

        2. cwaltz

          It doesn’t help that Donald can’t keep his ego in check. He’s making it about “character ” too when his response to things like his previous childish name calling is to call the person making the accusations immoral.

          He could have said I’m sorry I hurt her feelings, it was a long time ago. He then could have pounded Hillary on her support for things like the war state. He could have hit her on the botched Libya campaign that even Obama admits was one of his biggest mistakes. He could have brought up the health care exchanges getting smaller and smaller and offering less and less choice.

          He could have hit her in places where he isn’t as weak as she is. In a character match up they both are losers.

          1. Waldenpond

            I get the feeling that he covers other items when he’s at events. The media picks items that are unclear and all cover his flubs so he has to know that he’s going to get covered when he does something stupid/racist/misogynist. I wonder how many are like me and absolutely don’t care about anything he says because I don’t support either HC or DT and ignore them as much as possible.

            In PA today he attacked NAFTA, TPP and globalism, got HC booed for mocking and being sarcastic about Sanders supporters, “How on earth can Hillary Clinton lead the country when she has nothing but contempt for its people?”

            I think there is a split between campaign events and media as there is a split between online and msm. How that shakes out, I don’t know.

    4. Pat

      Not only unconcerned. Happy to hang out with him, seek his endorsement and donations, etc.Mind you in the Clintons case, these are people who also admire Kissinger and that makes Trump really really moral and humane.

    5. jgordon

      It’s appalling that Hillary and her media toadies are playing up the fact that Trump called women fat, while that same media completely ignores that Hillary took money from Saudi Arabia to send America to war against Libya.

      Seriously, in the entire history of the human race has there ever, ever been a more singularly corrupt act than to take money from a foreign power to send your own nation to war against some other nation? And all we hear about is that Trump called women fat! These people are out of their minds.

      1. Pavel

        Not to mention selling cluster bombs and white phosphorus to the same Saudi despots who use them against Yemeni civilians with the US’s assistance. 10s of thousands have been killed and there is a dreadful famine affecting hundreds of thousands.

        But Trump called a woman fat, so he is the evil one.

        1. ggm

          The famine is affecting millions. Yemen is enduring the worst humanitarian crisis on the planet. That is a war for Saudi Arabia to flex its muscle against Iran and shiites to counteract their economic weakness from oil price declines. No one has any real geopolitical interest there. Only Trump brings attention to Yemen on the campaign trail. Not the media, and definitely not Clinton who gleefully increased weapons sales to Saudi Arabia while she was at State.

          1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

            The Obama/Hilary government in action.
            Anyone voting for a continuation is complicit.
            So yes, you can have a president who did not call someone “fat”….but be sure and keep a photo of the Yemeni girl with her arms blown off on your bedside table to remind you the price you paid for that crucial advantage.

      2. cwaltz

        Your acting as if things are an either or proposition.

        The reality is Clinton IS a horrible candidate AND so is Trump.

        There I fixed it for you.

        1. jgordon

          On the horrible scale I’d rate Trump as about a 1, for having potty mouth and a fragile ego, and Hillary as a 10 for being a psychotic mass murderer. I wouldnt feel so offended, or maybe I should say nonplussed, if your comments contained at least a caveat that compared to a vile monster like Hillary, Trump isn’t so bad.

          1. cwaltz

            I think they both suck and I think they’ll both continue to suck if elected.

            You can give him character points for bragging about being the smart rich guy who avoids taxes and let’s other people pay for the roads he drives on, the protection that gives him the freedom to open his fat trap, or the court systems he’s also availed himself of.

            I won’t

            It’s ironic that a party that spends continuous amounts of time whining about how the bottom of the income scale end up with zero tax liability could find his statements anything other than repulsive.

            Then again hypocrisy and GOP are practically synonyms these days.

    6. Whine Country

      I think it was the US Bankruptcy Code that took Trump’s supporters into bankruptcy with him. Trump’s company went broke – OK end of story. How may people has Hillary participated in having them killed doing her good works. Where does this end? Apparently the voters up for grabs presently are the stupid idiots among us.

  7. optimader

    How to Retire at 40 Bloomberg. John W: “So many audacious assumptions!”

    Joe Udo retired in 2012, at 38, after spending 16 years as a computer hardware engineer at Intel ….but Udo says his family lives comfortably on less. They spend about $50,000 a year—from his wife’s earnings,
    HAHA.. this guy should have been in sales, not hardware engineering!

    So retire at 40 and do what? walk around in a robe and slippers w/ a Bloody Mary made w/ Gordon’s Gin you bought at Walmart?

    1. ambrit

      Well, each of those ‘examples’ had over a million dollars in investment accounts, plus other stuff. How many of the people who frequent this site, which I will admit skews higher status, have even come within sniffing distance of a million bucks? (Put your hand down Comrade Jim. You might be the exception that proves the rule.) It might be me, but this smacks of elitist thinking on the part of Bloomberg.
      Next I expect to see something from “High Times” like: “Retire early with Cannabis delivery to friends and neighbours!”

      1. Jim Haygood

        My dealer in Da Bronx and his wife work hard, making home deliveries.

        It’s a job for night owls. They don’t even get up till late morning.

        Like everything else these days, if you actually figure the hourly pay, it ain’t that great.

        1. ambrit

          Our little half horse town used to have a pizza delivery service that could add “extra toppings” for a nominal surcharge. They only delivered after midnight, and, if my informants are reliable, most of the local cops were regular customers. I’m told that their pizzas were very good. (“Don’t make ‘evidence’ disappear son. It could be found out.” “Yes sergeant.”)

        1. MtnLife

          People who have never really experienced hardship tend to have undeveloped character – something that exotic adventures and pricey experiences just can’t compensate for.

          1. Optimader

            I agree that learning to work with whats available does focus one’s resourcefulness
            Our shorthand for this is finding a peanut butter in your price range ( Not to malign PB&Js, love them w coffee!)

    2. Otis B Driftwood

      Better to find an occupation that you love and earns you enough to pay the bills. Those who achieve this are the genuinely blessed people.

      I know … easier said than done.

      1. optimader

        That’s what i was inferring.
        “Retire” can be a terminal state of mind imo.

        None of the excellent endeavors described in replies necessarily require Retiring as a young person perse.

        I do appreciate there are occupations that require physical stamina that just isn’t sustainable as the years advance, but I cant imagine giving up and tossing in the towel professionally at 40, I would much rather find an occupation that is satisfying.

        I am fortunate insofar as I do derive satisfaction from my occupation and it is balanced with plenty of “recreation”.

        I guess I’m fortunate in that regard. To be fair I do know ppl that simply detest their occupations which is a terrible thing. As well, I know a few that were involuntarily “retired” who are very frustrated.

        1. funemployed

          Ben Franklin retired at 40ish, and occupied himself swimmingly. Retiring doesn’t mean you stop working; it just means you untether yourself from a paycheck.

    3. polecat

      Well … I walk around in my robe …at times .. contemplating what to plant in next years un-victory garden, watch my bees, feed my chickens, canning food, and do maintenance around the abode ……. while the better half brings home the bacon ….

      that’s how it rolls for us at this point in the devolution of empire …

      As for the Bloody Marys, no way ….. but if your talkin about some homebrew .. well …

      …robe or not ;’)

      1. polecat

        I might add that I fix, repair, and re-purpose tools, appliances, and discards ( for use in the polecat domicile ) whenever the need arises ….. while many of what I would refer to as ‘cubicle folk’ are f*cked should they have to muster up some self-reliance in a pinch !

        1. Jomo

          So much hostility towards people who “retire” early. I didn’t retire in my forties but retired at age 52 and so did my Dad before me. Currently spend most of my time “working” on a small (foreclosed and abandoned) heritage farm I bought a year ago at the convergence of the St. Johns and Oklawaha Rivers in Florida. Replacing plumbing; planting small patches of potential organic crops to see how they do in the heat, soil, and insects; planting a permaculture fruiting forest along one side of the property that is not pasture; nurturing the surviving citrus trees, sand pears and blueberries; repairing the dock; shoveling horse poop out of a barn that has been left there for years and years (good fertilizer); and letting nature do its thing to increase wildlife. I am an “army of one” doing this, with some infrequent help from a neighbor, and occasionally a “Mexican” worker, because plumbers and electricians don’t really come here. I don’t congratulate myself on the importance of my daily activities in the way that people working jobs seem to do, but I think I am improving things. And I live a “real life.” A friend of mine who retired at 55 once said, “People who have to have a job to justify their existence don’t really have much imagination.” I would add that life is a lot better once you decide to not let others decide how you spend your time. For myself, I made that a goal in my early twenties and worked toward it for 28 and a half years. So all you wage slaves doing important work, don’t judge me and I won’t judge you (as the Lord said long ago). Sorry my response is so late because morning chores.

          1. Jeremy Grimm

            I think what you are doing is very important. I “retired” after I was laid off and became aware of the true proportions of our job market. I was very fortunate to be laid off at an age when I could qualify for a livable Social Security — though I did feel the need to move to a less expensive area. My job was one of those bullshit jobs discussed in this thread — which leaves me facing a very steep learning curve to acquire all the knowledge I will need to attempt the much smaller scale farming effort my finances might enable. I sorely miss the fresh fruit and vegetables my grandfather grew.

            One concern — what elevation is your farm in Florida? Could that present a problem at some future time?

          2. Kfish

            Good for you. That’s the sort of thing I’m aiming towards, and hopefully I’ll get there in the next 10 years. As someone in a bullshit job myself, I think that I’m a much more useful person when I’m making quilts, brewing or gardening than during my day job.

    4. fresno dan

      October 1, 2016 at 7:42 am

      So retire at 40 and do what? walk around in a robe and slippers w/ a Bloody Mary made w/ Gordon’s Gin you bought at Walmart?

      Uh, you say that as if it were a bad thing. Though you can actually get cheaper hooch at Liquor Barn…

      1. Cynthia

        So retire at 40 and do what? Well, I dunno, if you don’t feel the need to go on cruises or travel to resorts in 3rd world countries, I’d say that there is plenty to do. Living a simple life, volunteering somewhere, growing some of your own food, cooking from scratch for yourself and maybe others, taking care of yourself (physically and mentally), libraries, museums, art galleries, parks, visiting with neighbours and friends, reading, consuming the worthwhile parts of the interwebs for entertainment and enlightenment, involvement in your local economy and some local activism… IMO there aren’t enough hours in the day. I for one look forward to the day when I am out of the rat race and chillin’ and doing things I want to do, for me and others. Who says we have to be productive contributors to this ridiculos neoliberal economy? Earn your money, check out asap and love and care for your friends, family, and neighbours. Seems like a much better life to me than working to put money in the pockets of a bunch of shareholders who could care less about me.

        1. RMO

          I was going to say something like that but you said it perfectly. Assuming (and it is admittedly a damned hard thing to do) a retirement situation where you’re income exceeds your basic needs by a bit there are a hell of a lot of worthwhile things to do with your life.

          Gee, it sure would be nice if the economy was structured such that this sort of opportunity was more common wouldn’t it? One would think that policies designed to make that possible would be wildly popular and extensively promoted by candidates in such a great democracy. Oh, yeah, one of them did sorta try that and got screwed by the media and his own party apparatus. Funny that…

          As for the actual retire at 40 article, well it would have made just as much sense if the ideas included “win the lottery” or “take out a big life insurance policy and fake your own death”

      2. Jeremy Grimm

        You might try mixing some honey, water, and yeast in a carboy and wait a few months. The cost is small and the product — at least to my tastes — is far superior to the taste of a Bloody Mary.

        For purchased hooch I think the Costco Store Brand Vodka can’t be beat. I plan to steep the vodka with some horseradish for one batch. For a second batch I’ll steep some lightly crushed caraway, fennel, dill, and coriander seeds to make Akvavit — as an aid to digestion.

        1. Lambert Strether

          Better watch out for that. Honey doesn’t necessarily have all the nutrients that a random yeast needs — certainly not pasteurized honey, which will have boiled off all the scent anyhow. Unpasteurized, unfiltered, raw honey and an yeast bred for the purpose is my advice.

    5. OIFVet

      So retire at 40 and do what?

      Travel a lot, engage in your hobby. Well, not on the wifey’s $50K salary, obviously, and definitely not if the retirement is US-based. Cost of living is too high here.

      1. jrs

        I wonder if he gets healthcare through his wife’s work – snort.

        Her salary has to be at least 70k if they are SPENDING 50k a year, I mean taxes take a few 10 grand, it’s probably closer to 100k.

    6. Daryl

      Live life? Pursue your interests to the fullest degree possible?

      Would have thought people on this site would be more receptive to the idea of not being a corporate worker for life, regardless of whether it is feasible for the average person or not.

    7. Waldenpond

      Everything? Garden, fish, see the planet, play chess, read a book, build a chicken coop, hike, bike, fly a kite, start a small business, work with children, animals or seniors, build a playground, work at the local botanical garden or zoo, do clean up at the beach, forest or trails, re-build train tracks into bike trails, restore watershed habitat, remove invasives, plan a block party, raise food for the food bank, take in a pet, grow herbs for a restaurant, learn to paint, draw, weld, carve wood, write a book, take pictures….

      People have been indoctrinated to calculate human worth as the amount of wealth that is being created on behalf of an oligarch. We have just a brief stint on the planet, I would prefer to see a three day work week or retirement at about 50 when people are still healthy enough to contribute to their communities in a way that is personally satisfying.

  8. Jim Haygood

    Antidote: that’ll be the priceless expression on traders’ faces when stocks finally hit an air pocket.

      1. Pat

        Oh I don’t think most of us will be that wide eyed after the election. Self medicated or hiding under the bed or in the closet unless we have to watch what form the train wreck takes. We’re the people that understand Grid Lock looks good…

        1. ambrit

          Now that you mention it, this entire “gridlock” meme reminds me of a series of stories Frank Herbert wrote about the exploits of the ‘Bureau of Sabotage,’ (BuSab). It was a part of the Galactic Government which guaranteed the un-smooth functioning of the Instrumentality. All in the best interests of the citizenry.
          I really hope that no one promises to make “the Acela run on time.”

        2. Kurt Sperry

          Gridlock is plus non-accountability and minus legislative pace. That’s a fine trade-off if you’ve got a kayfabe that needs managing.

  9. timbers

    Obama administration may use obscure fund to pay billions to ACA insurers Washington Post (furzy)

    No thought or mention of using these funds to help people in financial distress due to medical issues or help the 30 million Americans who have no access to medical care….is of course standard operating procedure.

    1. LT

      They will act as a “single payer” to prop up a corporation. It’s more socialism for the wealthy.
      Also, note the mention in the article about rents with regards to the plan being floated for the Fed to purchase homes/buildings to prop up prices instead of letting them fall to match the wages being offered in this country to the majority of people.

  10. Eureka Springs

    Seriously? I rather doubt this “gridlock” people mention will actually lock up anything important to the duopoly owners. Certainly not for long.

    Wars will continue.
    The Supremes, no matter thier number will continue to protect and promote business.
    Congress will keep thier ability to conduct insider trading.
    Wealthfare too.
    My “high speed” internet connection will remain at 28kbs on a good day in perpetuity.
    Complete lawlessness at the top.
    Surveillance and police state.
    Forced purchases of Obamney, not care.
    The privatisation of IRS collections, parking meters, prisons and education and just about anything nailed down or otherwise.


    Beneficial gridlock is just a dream some of you have…

    1. fresno dan

      Eureka Springs
      October 1, 2016 at 9:05 am

      I agree 1,000%
      Look for TPP, modified, new and improved, with extra benefits and features (for the 1%) to get done (probably passed on a Friday night and scarcely reported…)

  11. Jim Haygood

    How not to win friends and influence people:

    The musicians of the fabled Philadelphia Orchestra went on strike on Friday just before their season-opening gala concert.

    As a gala audience including many of the Philadelphia Orchestra’s donors and board members — some in black tie — gathered at Verizon Hall for an opening night concert, the musicians were soon walking a picket line instead of playing Gershwin and Ravel.

    The orchestra’s management said it had offered the musicians raises of 2 percent each year for the next three years on an annual base pay of $127,608.

    Can you imagine going to a music festival and learning that the bands have “gone on strike”?

    One’s heart bleeds for these classical musicians, trying to keep body and soul together on $127K. :-(

    1. allan

      Jim, you’re welcome to audition anytime. Start with the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto in E minor
      and work your way up from there.

      Comrade, why the outrage at salaries just above the US median for those with professional degrees? These highly skilled artists have devoted years of their lives to training (can you say opportunity cost?) to give them even a low-probability shot at an orchestra job. The hatred directed towards teachers and musicians and artists in this country is a thing to behold. Comrade Jay Gould would be proud.

      1. justanotherprogressive

        I have to agree with you. Classical musicians, who spend their lives becoming true professionals and should be treated as true professionals. And we begrudge them a $127,000 salary when we don’t blink an eye at some idiotic 17-year old with very little talent and very little training making millions selling “bubble-gum music”?
        Perhaps Jim would feel better if he understood that a professional musician also has to pay an agent and his “dues” out of that $127,000? Not to mention the cost of his instrument and its care and upkeep……or do you think a professional musician can make the kind of music you want to hear with your’s kid’s band instrument?

          1. justanotherprogressive

            I don’t know whether to laugh at your statement because it obviously has to be a joke – or cry, because you actually don’t know any better….

      2. Jim Haygood

        ‘The hatred directed towards teachers and musicians …’

        Anyone who attends live shows in smaller venues knows how hard talented musicians have to work these days. They blog, they post videos, they sell merch, they drive from town to town in their vans. They respect their fans, and get respect back. For them to “go on strike” would be inconceivable.

        Symphony musicians striking shows startling disrespect for their audience (not to mention the absurdity of applying an industrial union model to preserved-in-amber “music”).

        Good thing I didn’t have to walk out past that picket line in Philly, after wasting my money and time on travel, tickets, and parking. Prolly would’ve hollered “enjoy your food stamps, f***ers” and started a brawl.

        1. Kurt Sperry

          Why would or should they be any less entitled to collective job action than any other profession? I don’t get it. Because their repertoire is substantially of a certain age?

        2. Cynthia

          I am so tired of the “they make too much” bs that arises whenever unionized workers try to protect what they have. Turn it around brother. We need more unionized jobs with benefits. I’d rather see musicians earning good wages than CEOs who earn orders of magnitude more than their workers. How about the people who bought tickets & missed the concert join those musicians on the picket line? What an interesting and well spent couple of hours that would be. You can listen to classical music live or recorded anytime, how often do you get to talk to musicians and learn about their lives?

        3. justanotherprogressive

          Pardon me, but I think you “slip” is showing. So it is OK with you for musicians to work like slaves for peanuts and keep their mouths shut? Don’t you realize the fact that those “talented musicians” you claim to support, don’t go on strike is because they can’t? Because as free-lance individuals, they have almost no rights? Is that OK with you because it means YOU get to listen to their hard work for nothing? Soooo… about society deciding YOUR hard work means nothing…….you OK with that too?
          I suggest you actually get to know some professional musicians. Yes, they ARE people too!

        4. witters

          “for them to go on strike would be inconceivable” – because they are so poor. And that, for Jimmy boy, is a WONDERFUL thing.

      3. Dave

        Professional musicians in San Francisco are all union. It was, before recorded music existed, one of he more powerful unions in the region.

        Has anyone thought of the Working and Professional Debtor Class going on a nationwide general strike?
        Something like Occupy Wall Street, but at the local level, in what ever town square or even local mall, if that’s all they have.
        Workshops on how the economy is working to hurt them, who is responsible, what to do about it and the formation of local co-ops.

      4. hreik

        ^^^^^^^^ This ^^^^^^^^. And coming from a musical family I’ll tell you I’d have joined the picket line supporting them. Thanks.

    2. Pat

      Jim, I don’t know the specifics here, but what I do know is that the management of the Philadelphia Orchestra took it through a very expensive bankruptcy a few years ago where as far as I can tell the major things that occurred were the Musicians took cuts and the administration of the Annenberg grant to the organization was returned to the Annenberg Foundation (meaning management no longer determines how to spend that money).
      From what I can see you are quoting management about this strike, and I have a lot of experience that says what management says are the issues rarely includes the issues that make it clear that workers are not just having a tantrum. The reason I bring up the bankruptcy is that apparently that cut meant that their base income was no longer on par with other American orchestras of similar standing. Apparently this contract just continues that and does nothing to restore the musicians.
      And while you may balk at those salaries, you might want to remember that these people are highly trained experts in their field with the expenses that come with that – see instruments, continued training, music etc.
      And there is no Philadelphia Orchestra without them.

    3. Vatch

      Hi Jim,

      There’s an error in your quote. “$127,608” isn’t followed by a period, it’s followed by a comma.

      The orchestra’s management said it had offered the musicians raises of 2 percent each year for the next three years on an annual base pay of $127,608.

      Here’s the full sentence:

      The orchestra’s management said it had offered the musicians raises of 2 percent each year for the next three years on an annual base pay of $127,608, which is less than other top orchestras pay.

      Many professional athletes “earn” millions of dollars per year, and they have been known to go on strike.

      Yannick Nézet-Séguin, the music director of the Philadelphia Orchestra earns pretty good bucks, especially since he’s simultaneously music director of the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, and he’s in the process of being phased in as music director of the NY Metropolitan Opera Company. Frankly, I’m confused, but this guy obviously makes far more money than $127,000:

      The Philadelphia Orchestra Association previously said that in addition to paying $519,319 in 2013 to Nézet-Séguin, it paid the IRS $227,950 on his behalf for taxes, plus $12,564 for primarily travel-related expenses.

      He also has a position with Montréal Orchestre Métropolitain until 2020-21. I’m very confused. However, I don’t think that Yannick Nézet-Séguin will be going on strike any time soon.

  12. Jim Haygood

    Upscale LGBT demographics:

    Apparently, it pays to be gay and married.

    According to recent data released by the U.S. Treasury, annual household income for married gay men in 2014 came in at, on average, $176,000, vs. $113,000 for heterosexual couples. That’s a huge 56% difference.

    By the same metric, income in traditional marriages also lagged that for lesbian couples, which earned an average of $124,000 annually.

    Hillary’s notorious “basket of deplorables” remark was made at the LGBT for Hillary Gala in NYC on Sep. 9th.

    Hillary likely calculated that her disdainful ‘tude would appeal to a well-heeled audience.

    She might have figured wrong.

    1. ambrit

      Those figures tell much more, as the short article mentions.
      The “married” gays could mean married homosexuals, or homosexual married to lesbian or straight woman couples. If ‘married’ both gay men couples, the average beats the married two lesbian couples average by a suspiciously ‘institutionalized’ pay gap. Since women are “traditionally” paid less than men for the same jobs, this disparity should be observed in non-traditional families too. The married heterosexual couples ‘shortfall’ in wages can be attributed to the female member of the heterosexual couple’s, “traditional” lower wage. Significantly, the lesbian couple’s combined wage lagged the homosexual couples combined wage and could be considered an artifact of the same wage gender gap.
      The other imponderable is the mix of working and non working members of various families.
      Finally, is a two working spouse couple now the norm for American families? Around here, the divide between two working married partner families and one working partner families seems to be economic status.
      Also, what are the figures for median annual income? That would be much more representative of the ‘real’ economy.
      A short quibble. Is this article generated by an algorithm? Some of the construction is, er, awkward.

      1. jrs

        Yea it’s about the pay gap probably, even trans people that have transitioned to female supposedly earn less afterward than they did as males. Of course they may face additional discrimination as well.

    2. timbers

      I’m gay and among my gay friends I detect higher support for Clinton than for example my co-workers who are mostly not gay. My gay friends seem to have zero knowledge or interest in subjects like Obama’s wars & drone bombings and view suggestions of future wars under Clinton or health issues as “conspiracy theories.” One gay friend is especially dense in refusing to get any connection btwn the nations we’ve regime changed & the refugee crisis in Europe no matter how I explain it. On a bright note, a straight co-worker who’s “with her & Obama” got it like a ton of bricks fell on him when I said “look at the nations we’ve regime changed. Now look at the nations refugees are coming from. See the connection? Now which nation is trying to stop that?” He stopped, his face went blank and said sarcastically “yah Russia’s on the side of the angels.” He got it even though he hated reaching a conclusion that contradicted his politics. I told him he just committed an act of critical thinking. He’s been much more cautious bring up discussions since.

      1. Pat

        Next time you are talking to your friends you might drop her lack of support for gay marriage over the years on them, pointing out that she didn’t advance on it until 2013. You can even use for evidence. And then point out that until she appeared at the event celebrating NY’s raising of the minimum wage (no matter the weak tea of it) she had never done anything that supported that either. . Not sure it will work, but part of what chipped away on my support was my realization how often the Clintons show up to accept the kudos of advancement without actually doing anything to advance liberal policies, even social ones, and many times even hindered that advancement.

        And congratulations on getting your co-worker to recognize that America’s foreign policies have been detrimental.

        1. Katniss Everdeen

          Which is exactly why the american “voters” are now being asked to choose their “president” based on purported “fat-shaming” of a Venezuelan beauty contestant, who only recently became an american citizen, after she voluntarily entered a “beauty pageant” 22 years ago in an attempt to monetize her “beauty” which, presumably, included her weight.

          If hillary clinton had to “campaign” on issues of real import to the health and well-being of the country, she wouldn’t have a leg to stand on.

          And so we are asked to forget the flip-flopping, dishonest, war-mongering, murderous corruption that is clinton, and cast a sympathy “vote” for a middle-aged former beauty contestant who can’t control her weight.

      2. DJG

        timbers: As you well know, you are also describing how class and race run through the gay community. More than one critic (gay) pointed out that marriage equality has mainly served gay men. The pay disparities between men and women practically put lesbians in a different social class.

        Whenever I despair at how conservative gayfolk seem to be getting, what with the adulation of Tim Cook and even of the execrable Peter Thiel, I take a look at Lady Bunny’s blog. Lady Bunny, political revolutionary in a wig!

        [You might point some of your colleages to Lady Bunny’s blog, too.]

        1. PhilU

          Growing up gay marriage wasn’t totally on the table for most. Once it became an option it was really only the rich who could afford it. It’s been 1.5 years since it became legal. In this economy would we be expecting the poor gays who hadn’t been saving up for a wedding be ready to drop major cash on it?
          That is even more the case with kids. Kids require a huge upfront cost for gay men especially. There are no accidental kids. No Turkey basters. It is a high upfront cost no matter what. So of course it will only be the richest gays that can afford it.
          (++++ Lady Bunny’s blog, Huge Berner, hates Hillary, she’d fit right in with the NC crowd)

    3. Dave

      Those damn children are expensive! Building the future of the country through educating, inculcating values in them, food and water, it costs a fortune I tell ya! The time requirement for children is such that you can’t work as many hours and thus have less income.
      Downside to that “wealth”: There are going to be a lot of sad old lonely people in this country in a few decades. I’m sure they’ll be interested in other peoples’ grandchildren when they come to visit.

      p.s. If being gay is genetic, won’t coming out of the closet means likely extinction for that gene?

      1. Bas

        Household income metric doesn’t refer to cost of children. If those are included the disparity is even starker, as per the article.

        If being gay were entirely genetic, cultural norms would have extinguished those genes many millennia ago.

        For the same reason, there is no gene for infertility, even if its causes can be genetic.

        1. Dave

          You are looking at my argument backwards.
          People with children usually work, and should work, fewer hours, therefore earn less income.
          People who have no children can work longer hours and are more flexible and therefore have better career choices and can earn more.

          I think homosexuality is all epigentics and is culturally created. I posit the claim that it’s genetic as wishful hogwash attempting to ride the coattails of the civil rights movement.
          My question was meant to Darwinize that.

          Also, there are billions of dollars being saved by the healthcare insurance industry that no longer has to pay for psychotherapy as it’s been normalized.
          Conversely, I bet that if there were a new patent on a really expensive drug that could “treat” homosexuality, it would suddenly become the subject of “national conversation” on NPR and all the drug money addicted media.

          1. John Zelnicker

            @Dave – “I think homosexuality is all epigentics and is culturally created. I posit the claim that it’s genetic as wishful hogwash attempting to ride the coattails of the civil rights movement.”

            Then how do you explain gays and lesbians from past centuries who were subject to imprisonment, torture, and death by stoning for their sexual orientation? In the not so distant past, and in some countries even today, being gay was tantamount to a death warrant. How exactly do you think the intensely homophobic culture of a country like Uganda, which imposes the death penalty on gays and lesbians, creates that sexual orientation?

            For the strongest genetic evidence to date, see this:

            Although not conclusive, it is important evidence.

            1. Dave

              OK, if they stop having children and come out of the closet and lead the lives they want, their genes will more likely disappear.
              I asked a lesbian about her belief in genetics versus environment as a basis for her lesbianism. She said that’s it’s genetic.
              When mentioning the likely disappearance of that gene if pro forma heterosexual marriage and children were less likely she said, “Well, we can always adopt”.
              I just shook my head and walked away wishing her a good day.

              1. Vatch

                If the gene(s) that determine (or make more likely) homosexuality are recessive, the gene(s) might never drop out of the genome, even if gay people completely stop procreating. If the gene(s) is/are dominant, then the gene(s) might disappear. There’s still the possibility of mutations. . . .

              2. JTMcPhee

                LGBT propagation:

                I went to a party, years ago, in Seattle. Celebration of a lesbian couple, 20 years together with two great kids. On the mantel in their beautifully refitted craftsman bungalow was a turkey baster, mounted like a Samurai sword on an elegant carved horizontal stand. The brass plaque said, in big letters, “DADDY.”

                How the preference for same sex would survive? “We’re working on that,” say the biotechies:



                And one can look forward to what will be coming out of the CRISPR drawer down the road…

          2. Cynthia

            RIght. People make a choice to be part of a culture that is despised and discriminated against. Holy cow! This is NC man, read a bit, be open-minded. Homosexuality exists in species other than humans .. “culturally created”. Seriously, give your head a shake.

        2. cwaltz

          It’s actually funny because if gay is a genetic predisposition then the “Christian right” and their insistence that a gay person fight their natural predisposition could be responsible for the gay genes perpetuation for many years.

          If you tell someone that it’s a “sin” to be themselves and then they seek out a woman or man to fight their “sinful nature” and have progeny(as God intended according to the book) and that gene might get repeated.

            1. cwaltz

              I will never in a million years understand how some people believe that a profession of faith means a rejection of logic or science. I’m of the opinion that God is good with both.

              1. Vatch

                A lot depends on the nature of a particular person’s faith. For many, science and faith are perfectly compatible. But if a person has faith in miracles, that’s a strong indication that that person either rejects science, or considers it to be subordinate to faith.

        3. John Zelnicker

          @Bas – There are plenty of gays and lesbians throughout history who have had naturally conceived children due to cultural pressure to be “normal”. Is homosexuality “entirely genetic”? We just don’t know. Gene expression depends on so many things including the familial and cultural environment. (It is even affected by air pollution and water quality.) In addition, some people do choose to be gay nowadays, since it is no longer a death warrant in most Western countries. I would ask you though, how much cultural influence you think there is on an 8 year old raised in a completely heterosexual family?

          1. cwaltz

            I don’t necessarily think people choose to be gay as much as their natural inclination was bisexuality to begin with.

            I think it’s not necessarily a bad thing either to choose your mate based on something other than physical characteristics anyway. In the long haul looks fade but things like a generous nature or compassionate heart last a lifetime and only tend to grow over time.

  13. Linda

    “Wells Fargo’s Cross-Selling Mania Goes Back More Than 15 Years ”

    This isn’t just a Wells Fargo thing or even a big bank thing. Cross selling at banks and insurance companies goes back more than 20 years.

    Even back in the 90’s the incentives were very generous. I would also bet then and now the majority of bank/insurance “customers” hadn’t a clue their friendly local “customer service rep” was actually commissioned sales agents. The abuse of trust by insurance agents and bank employees to sell financial products is and was, IMHO, obscene.

  14. justanotherprogressive

    Re: District court overturns magistrate decision rejecting ‘seize first, search second’ procedure for email warrants
    I’m no attorney so can someone help me understand this one?
    Do I have this right?
    So say the government believes someone who’s last name starts with a A might be more susceptible to becoming a terrorist (no proof, of course, just a hunch). Does the government now have the right to seize all emails from people whose last name starts with the letter A and sift through them looking for their supposed terrorist? So everyone whose last name starts with the letter A has lost their 4th Amendment rights based on a bad decision by some other judge that got through without challenge? And all of this based on no facts but an “ex ante” …..feeling?

  15. rich

    With a History of Political Corruption, Rock Creek Pharma Files for Bankruptcy

    Rock Creek Pharma reported total assets of about $35,000 with total liabilities of $21.3 million. RCP Development has total liabilities of almost $52 million, with assets of more than $31,000. And Star Tobacco claims assets of more than $482,000, but its total liabilities are $12.2 million.

    Michael Mullan is the company’s chief executive officer, formerly chief executive of the Roskamp Institute. Rock Creek was originally called Star Scientific and based in Virginia. The company’s founder and former chief executive officer, Jonnie Williams, stepped down in late 2013 after investigations of his relationship with Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell.

    McDonnell and his wife Maureen were indicted in January 2014 for accepting gifts, vacations and loans exceeding $175,000 from Williams. The 14-count indictment charged that, in return for the gifts, McDonnell used his office to “legitimize, promote, and obtain research studies for Star Scientific’s products.”

    The McDonnells were found guilty of public corruption in September 2014, and the governor was convicted on 11 counts and later sentenced to two years in prison. Maureen McDonnell was convicted on nine counts and received a sentence of a year and a day.

    Governor McDonnell’s sentence was upheld by the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, which then was taken to the U.S. Supreme Court. The Supreme Court overturned the sentence and returned it to the lower court.

    At the Supreme Court case, Justice John Roberts wrote in an opinion, “There is no doubt that this case is distasteful; it may be worse than that. But our concern is not with tawdry tales of Ferraris, Rolexes, and ball gowns, it is instead with the broader legal implications of the Government’s boundless interpretation of the federal bribery statute.”

    The Justice Department declined to prosecute again and moved to dismiss the charges.

    Rule of (f)Law?

    1. ilporcupine

      So the juries in these cases, and the courts up the line, are all wrong about what constitutes bribery.
      Theirs is the “boundless Interpretation”. Not J. Roberts. Right. OK.

    1. fresno dan

      Kurt Sperry
      October 1, 2016 at 11:44 am

      I almost posted a snippet from that article which pointed out that – was it 75% of people??? – think their own jobs are bullsh*t.

      fresno dan
      October 1, 2016 at 12:18 pm
      October 1, 2016 at 7:42 am

      “So retire at 40 and do what? walk around in a robe and slippers w/ a Bloody Mary made w/ Gordon’s Gin you bought at Walmart?”

      Uh, you say that as if it were a bad thing. Though you can actually get cheaper hooch at Liquor Barn…

    2. BecauseTradition

      The answer clearly isn’t economic: it’s moral and political. The ruling class has figured out that a happy and productive population with free time on their hands is a mortal danger (think of what started to happen when this even began to be approximated in the ‘60s). And, on the other hand, the feeling that work is a moral value in itself, and that anyone not willing to submit themselves to some kind of intense work discipline for most of their waking hours deserves nothing, is extraordinarily convenient for them. David Graeber from

      Also, as several here have noted, one can work without a job if they have such resources as land or a workshop and, dare I say it, an income.

      Nice article!

    3. Robert Hahl

      And here is Graeber’s explanation:

      “…what does it say about our society that it seems to generate an extremely limited demand for talented poet-musicians, but an apparently infinite demand for specialists in corporate law? (Answer: if 1% of the population controls most of the disposable wealth, what we call “the market” reflects what they think is useful or important, not anybody else.)”

      This reasoning seems correct as far as it goes, but it does not explain why the 1% feel the need to keep accumulating beyond a point which damages society. I think it to avoid creating too many useful goods and services because, since if they existed (almost) everyone would be expected to do some useful work. Nobody cares if a stock trader retires, but it’s very upsetting when useful people decide to just stop.

      1. anon

        It is about power. These folks have more money than they can spend in one lifetime. At some point money becomes a proxy for buying power and influence, and competing for influence at the highest levels requires more money for more power.

  16. Katharine

    It’s too bad the article on the illegitimate voter registration in Virginia says, “All of the forms had been submitted by a private group that was working to register voters on the campus of James Madison University, according to the Harrisonburg registrar’s office. The group was not identified.”

    I would have thought the information about the identity of the group would be a matter of public record and the reporter should have pushed for it and stated whether it was actively refused. Also the article says no charges have been filed. This leaves lots of questions, like, was this real fraud being attempted by Democrats, or semblance of real fraud being attempted by Republicans to justify limiting voting rights, and is there collusion between government officials and the fraudulent voter registration group to account for the lack of charges?

  17. craazyman

    That’s either the real life Bambi or a space alien deer, maybe from Mars. When Elon Musk gets to Mars he is going to be very surprised to see all the animals. There’s no animals in the Mars pictures, for reasons that are not hard to guess. Don’t animals run away when you walk through the woods? Why wouldn’t they run when a creepy robot on wheels comes in their general direction.

    They may look like that animal. Isn’t it kind of reddish brown? I could easily see that deer on Mars. Easily.

    It seems to me a sense of edgy animosity continues to build throughout the known world. If this doesn’t end in some kind of conflagration it will be surprising. I don’t know. It seems like something hard and cold is forming and I don’t mean winter. I like winter. More than summer, in New Yawk anyway. There’s not much to do in New Yawk in the summer and maybe less to do in most places, like anywhere almost. Run around and waste time, or sit around and waste time. Either one. Until the conflagration makes you get up and run, unless somebody puts a gun in your hand and says “Go kill da white man or the black man or the yellow man or the red man or the Jew or the Muslim or the Sunni or the Shiite or the Hindu or the Paki or the whatever or the OobaGooba.” That’s what it may be coming to. Then the conflagration. Maybe a nuke strike or an asteroid or a flood. Or maybe the entire world will fall into another dimension and you’ll look up and see huge insects staring at you. That would freak me out. Just thinking about it freaks me out. Hopefully we’ll get lucky and none of this will happen.

    1. Alex morfesis

      Despite mankinds attempts over the last 2 millions sunsets to self destruct, like edible weeds gaia keeps handing us for free…these carbon based life forms hosting our pathetic souls keep sprouting back up…

      Total destruction and annihilation is not one of humanities capabilities or strong capacities…

      despite what we might be fed by the history books written by the victors, the movies made these last 100 yrs by those kalipornia pirates in hollywood evading thomas edison and all those shaw brothers kung fu flix with Lily Ho…

    2. Synapsid


      Not from Mars, from Africa. It looks like a duiker.

      While waiting for the first soft landing on Mars (no-one remembers that there was an earlier Soviet one because its camera switched off after 20 seconds of transmitting featureless grey) Carl Sagan said that his recurring nightmare was that the lander would land safely and transmit beautiful images and then shut down for the cold Martian night as it was supposed to. When it turned on the next morning there would be footprints everywhere.

      A colleague at NASA said that he knew why the Soviet lander had stopped transmitting: a Martian had walked up behind it and switched it off.

      There’s talent unaccounted for in the space-science community.

    3. Ulysses

      “Hopefully we’ll get lucky and none of this will happen.”


      The vibe is definitely one of unbearable tension. I walked up from Columbus Circle to the Society for Ethical Culture, looking for answers. The guy at the door tried to steal my wallet! Time to head for the woods, I guess.

  18. Katharine

    I won’t dignify Randy Barnett’s call to “restore” the Constitution by the term ironic. Let’s just call it base hypocrisy, since what he wants to do is call a convention that would in the present climate be likely to destroy the Constitution and replace it with something lacking a strong bill of rights and giving inordinate power to corporations and technocrats.

    I personally would just like to see us respect the Constitution we have. If it were properly enforced it could serve much better than it does.

  19. diptherio

    Strange Deaths of JPMorgan Workers Continue Pam Martens and Russ Martens

    How many potential witnesses and family members of witnesses have to be offed before we accept the obvious conclusion — JPMorgan is a mafia enterprise? If it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck….

  20. diptherio

    David Post would like Trump supporters to kindly stop pointing out that the whole point in a (modern American) election is the determination of which candidate is the least deplorable. He makes the argument for Clinton on the basis of Trump’s lack of fitness for office, but requests that no one use that same tactic to make the case for Trump. How convenient.

    And please, if you do care to respond, I ask that you NOT tell me about how terrible you think Hillary Clinton is. I get that; many of you think she’s an abomination. Many of you may even think that she’s dangerously unstable and shouldn’t be entrusted with the commander in chief’s power. Fine; put that all aside. My question isn’t “Whom do you like more, Trump or Clinton?,” nor is it “Why aren’t you supporting Hillary Clinton?” (or Gary Johnson, for that matter). It’s a much simpler question, and it’s just about Donald Trump. For purposes of this question, it doesn’t matter who he’s running against; the failings of other candidates don’t affect his standing on the one test that matters most of all. If you’re a supporter, I assume that you’ve satisfied yourself that he will exercise the rather awesome and terrifying powers of the U.S. commander in chief in a reasonable manner, and I’m curious as to how you’ve done that.

    And if we ask the same thing about Hillary…hey, that’s changing the topic, no fair!

    I have to wonder if he’s aware of how ridiculous his attempt at persuasion is, and how insulting, or if he is just totally oblivious…

    1. cwaltz

      Well, for me, the least deplorable candidate is Jill Stein.

      Then again, I’m clearly not in favor of the duopoly maintaining control of our electoral process.

      If anything the fact that people are forced to choose “least deplorable” should make people pause and ask themselves why the Democratic Party and the GOP party should be entitled to vet the candidates.

      I’m pretty sure in the beginning that the intent was for people to vote FOR a candidate, not against one which seems to be the ploy the duopoly is pulling for this cycle.

      1. Jeremy Grimm

        I am mystified that Baraka hasn’t pulled a substantial number of Black voters to the Green Party. Is this a problem with the relative invisibility of the Greens? — or is there some other reason Hillary still seems to pull a large number of Black supporters?

        1. cwaltz

          I’m not sure. I do think that some of the problem the Greens face is the “pragmatic voter” dilemma. People vote status quo because they believe those are the candidates that have a reasonable chance to win. Of course, any candidate has a reasonable chance to win if enough people are willing to take a chance.

          It’s sad because minorities have not been treated well by either the Democrats or the GOP. They would be best served to pick something other than the two status quo candidates.

          1. NotTimothyGeithner

            Organization and alternative media are important.

            Older black platforms are corporate now, and the black church has always been a repressive outfit with exceptions (King and Abernathy). Inner cities were devastated by de-industrialization and Reagan and Clinton. The South has virtually no progressive organization otherwise.

            Internet access is another. How many African Americans can get BlackAgendaReport or Bruce Dixon? They aren’t linked on CNN or any other mention of the corporate media.

            Malcolm X’s point about house and field slaves still holds true. Plenty of nice people simply want fancy waiter uniforms and a pat on the head from the right people, and those nice people serve as distractions for the owners.

  21. Alex morfesis

    I was not cheating on your mother…that wasn’t me coming out of that hotel room…I don’t care what your friend “thinks” he saw…it wasn’t me…

    The more Comey speaks, the more he sounds like the cheating husband trying to convice his teenage son he isn’t stepping out on mom…despite the obvious…

    And for those fibirz who might be hardy enuf to not always do as you are told like my acquaintance who got run out for nipping too much…

    (or was it for not totally destroying all the j Edgar files as instructed…

    Follow da monee…sadly lou pearlman recently died so one can’t ask him directly about his old associate who ended up at platte river…follow da monee…(no this message was not approved by the candidate I wont be voting for…)

    Yes tattoo…

    But boss…de cam…de cam…

  22. rich

    Farewell USA Today! (I Hardly Knew Ye)

    For me, it will be difficult to view USA Today from now on as the newspaper it once was. After all, when an editorial board admits this sort of bias, it’s reasonable to suspect they’ll see fit to deviate from other normal editorial policies, slanting their news coverage in subtle if not overt ways.

    USA Today now joins a cadre of media and journalists who have sacrificed their once-sacrosanct role of trying to remain at least relatively unbiased for the sake of the audience they serve. Instead, they are actively working to affect a national political campaign because they either feel so strongly personally they can’t help themselves; or they are so influenced by political, corporate or advertising factions that are increasingly twisting the arms of the media to advance their interests. Neither is a good scenario for a news organization, and neither is a good way to maintain the trust of readers looking for a fair news source. You might believe that well-meaning people at the newspaper simply feel so strongly, they had to take an unprecedented stand. Working on the inside for more than 30 years, I have a slightly more cynical suspicion: outside forces were at play in persuading the editorial board to take the action.

    Others in the news media will be rooting on USA Today. They, too, have abdicated their independent roles, and are happy to have one holdout join the club.

    It’s true that many people seek out news sources that express opinions with which they agree. But I’ve found these same people are often also thirsty for independent sources to turn to for the straight scoop without having to handicap the reporters’ or editorial board’s personal slants.

    USA Today used to be one place like that. I don’t think it is anymore. That’s our loss.

    but we we’re warned a long time ago…

    Upton Sinclair and the Contradictions of Capitalist Journalism

    The Brass Check pulled even fewer punches. The title itself is a reference to the chit issued to patrons of urban brothels at the time. Sinclair drew an analogy between journalists and prostitutes, beholden to the agenda, ideology, and policies of the monied elites that owned and controlled the press. It was an integral part of his broader critique of the corruption of U.S. politics and the appalling nature of capitalism: “Politics, Journalism, and Big Business work hand in hand for the hoodwinking of the public and the plundering of labor” (p. 153).

    The other book, besides The Jungle, was The Brass Check, which he published himself in 1919. In The Brass Check, Sinclair made a systematic and damning critique of the severe limitations of the “free press” in the United States. “(T)he thesis of this book,” he wrote, is “that American Journalism is a class institution serving the rich and spurning the poor.”*If The Jungle was notorious for its aggressive assaults on capitalist industry, The Brass Check pulled even fewer punches. The title itself is a reference to the chit issued to patrons of urban brothels at the time. Sinclair drew an analogy between journalists and prostitutes, beholden to the agenda, ideology, and policies of the monied elites that owned and controlled the press. It was an integral part of his broader critique of the corruption of U.S. politics and the appalling nature of capitalism: “Politics, Journalism, and Big Business work hand in hand for the hoodwinking of the public and the plundering of labor” (p. 153).

    The press was the key to every political issue in isolation and essential to the success of the larger movement as a whole. By the time Sinclair sat down in 1919 to write The Brass Check, he did so knowing that this book was of far greater significance than any he had written before. In the text of the book itself, he called it “the most important and most dangerous book I have ever written”(p. 429).

    Nor did the hostility of the established media powers end there. Most newspapers refused to review the book, and those very few that did were almost always unsympathetic. Many newspapers, like the New York Times, even refused to run paid advertisements for the book (p. 294). Critics loosely charged that Sinclair had been sloppy with his facts in The Brass Check, and the book did not stand up to close scrutiny. Sinclair, a fanatic for factual accuracy, directly challenged any of those he criticized in The Brass Check to sue him for criminal libel—often in the footnotes of later editions of the book—if they could prove a single word in the text was false. No suits were ever forthcoming. Indeed, in 1921, the Associated Press announced it was appointing a commission to review, collect evidence, and denounce the charges Sinclair made about the AP in The Brass Check. The project was quietly abandoned without any report, formal or informal, being issued (p. 376).

    La Follette termed advertising “a subtle new peril,” and he informed journalists that it would “in time seek to gag you.” “It is the big advertiser,” William Salisbury, a prominent journalist, concluded, “who is the gold-sceptered king of American journalism—the king who can do no wrong.”* Sinclair, too, more than any previous press critic, zeroes in on advertising and its ignominious implications for a free press. “Everywhere in the world of Journalism, high and low, you see this power of the advertiser,” he writes. “This system of publicity in return for advertising is a fundamentally dishonest one, but it is inseparable from the business of publishing news for profit, and the legitimate and the illegitimate shade into one another so gradually that it would be hard for an honest editor to know where to draw the line”(p. 285).

    Moreover, to Sinclair, the political biases of advertisers made it vastly more difficult for socialist pro-labor publications to survive in the marketplace. “For some strange reason,” he noted of a magazine that generated a large circulation but still could not generate enough revenue to break even, “the packers of hams and bacon, the manufacturers of automobiles and ready-made clothing, of toilet perfumeries and fancy cigarettes, would not pay money to a Socialist magazine!” (p. 294)

    but easier for status quo to thrive….Winning!

    1. Alex morfesis

      Despite the best efforts of the klownz that be to reslaverize our annoyingly resiliant species…100 years later…here we be still…and with hot running water this time around…upton is enjoying his view this evening…

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      Here are two guys who have recognized:

      -the GOP will remain the GOP
      -Hillary and by extension anyone in her orbit is unpopular.

      Look at the Republicans who were “never Trump,” they’ve gone quiet. If Trump loses a squeaker, Republican voters will make elected GOPers nostalgic for the Tea Party days.

      On the Democratic side, Matthews has been around retail politics long enough to know fear of Trump is holding the Dems together but in the mid terms watch out. He probably can’t muster a crowd for his show anymore.

  23. Fan of Bill Black

    I really wish Bill Black was in a governmental/law enforcement position with the actual power to go after the Stumpfs of the world and a staff well trained enough to see through all the ruses they have in place to avoid accountability.

    1. fresno dan

      October 1, 2016 at 4:18 pm

      I learned something – thanks!
      Hard to even imagine people today of equivalent wealth and rank joining forces, say to advocate abandoning our “involvement” in ANY corner of the globe….

      I actually tried to Google who is the most prominent advocate in the US for LEAVING the mideast cause I really couldn’t think of anyone.
      What I got were advocates for STAYING or INCREASING involvement in the mideast…

  24. Robert Hahl

    Would those tempted to join the growing healther movement please take note:

    “What would once have slithered in the back alleys of conspiracy theorists now makes its presence known in the plain light of day. Hillary Clinton almost falls at the anniversary of 9/11, and this evokes for the Right a theme about her being seriously ill. Explanations by the Hillary Clinton campaign that she has pneumonia are not sufficient. Since her trustworthiness is low, the Right picks at every opportunity to suggest that she is lying. Legitimate issues of concern about the corruption between the Clinton Foundation, the U.S. State Department and the Clintons themselves lose their credibility because the Right is promiscuous with its accusations. To suggest that Hillary Clinton’s coughing is hiding something deeper makes accusations about what she is really hiding (such as the deals done through the Clinton Foundation) illegitimate.”

    Of course our healthers are coming from the left. Same difference! (as we used to say in NYC).

    1. Pat

      1. Anyone who has seen the tape of her on 9/11 and knows anything about both pneumonia and heat stroke can tell you that was NOT what was going on that day.
      2. She used confusion from a health incident to justify not being able to remember key facts about getting classified information by email when interviewed by the FBI. When it became obvious they were going to check on her health, that was stopped from above. Was it done to protect her from having in the record somewhere she lied to FBI agents (a felony)? Or was there something darker to be found about her health?
      We don’t know.

      I would love for there to be a clear discussion of what is corruption, how the law has been rewritten in order to narrow that definition, and how the Clinton global initiative is clearly a money laundering operation. I would also love to find accurate reporting on Syria and Ukraine and a whole policy discussion on the failure of regime change as a foreign policy strategy and why continuing it is so important to Clinton. None of that is going to happen because all the people who benefit the most from a rigged system and bad governmental policies from taxes to financial regulations to foreign policy about corporate profits own our media, and are in the bag for Clinton. Hence it is not going to happen. But her health is also important, because frankly a whole lot of people who are going to pull the lever for Clinton might not do it if Kaine were going to be President by midterms…and they cannot control the rumor mill.

  25. ewmayer

    o What Exactly Is Saudi Arabia’s Relationship to Terrorism? | Atlantic — Do we really need a whole new article about this? A: One of the leading state sponsors thereof. Next question?

    o Judge: State Department need not seek records of Clinton’s private phone | Politico — Is a phone used to conduct a significant amount of the public’s business a ‘private phone’? I’m guessing more elite-privilege-think in play here by way of legal-standards inversion, along the lines of “even one text/call/e-mail about yoga or Chelsea’s nuptials makes it a private phone”.

    o Why don’t we restore the Constitution so every election is not “make or break”? Washington Post (furzy) — From the paper which has been cheerleading the government evisceration of said document every step of the way.

    o Obama administration may use obscure fund to pay billions to ACA insurers Washington Post (furzy) — It’s not a ‘fund’, it’s just another executive keyboard-alias for the monetary Ctrl-P command.

    o He fought in World War II. He died in 2014. And he just registered to vote in Va. Washington Post (Micael) — Better late than never, I guess. Holy ‘absentee ballot’, Batman!

  26. Sanda Lose

    Elizabeth Burton corrects the record by trying to scare you with the prospect of loathsome politicians who won because you voted for Greens instead of loathsome politicians. She thinks there’s people here that she can scare with her bullshit fake democracy. For 15 years now, political parties proscribed by the state have been subject to forcible repression that would get Aung San Suu Kyi a solid month of Time covers. Nobody votes for Stein to influence the bullshit fake election. They do it to disgrace the ruling junta of the USA. One pictures Elizabeth Burton as an apple-polishing rote grind at the Rangoon Institute of Technology telling you to stop burning Ne Win in effigy or else Maung Maung would get to pick the SLORC. Elizabeth, you don’t get it but your USA’s a joke.

  27. timotheus

    Re Vanity Fair article by Stieglitz: Amazing naivete on his (and other commission members’) part in not getting straight the terms of their service, including remit, procedures and resources, at the outset and in writing before allowing themselves to be paraded in front of the TV cameras by the Panamanian government as part of its bogus clean-up act. I’d say the “real” scandal is the self-indulgence of big-shot economists who don’t have a clue about how easy it is to take them to the PR cleaners.

  28. Jeremy Grimm

    I was browsing the Global Research website and ran across this on a new GMO technique:[] “Controversial Genetic Engineering Technology: “Gene Drive” and the Modification of Entire Species”. I guess if we avoid nuclear war and manage to adapt to Global Warming this cute little GMO technique can take up the slack.

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