Humpback whales are organizing in huge numbers, and no one knows why PopSci (Chuck L, Dan K)
Crashed UFO in Colombia actually belongs to Google Boing Boing (resilc)
An unconfirmed change in how Google ranks web pages is freaking some people out Washington Post. We only do the bare minimum in search engine optimization (as in putting up keywords) precisely because Google keeps changing its algos to keep ahead of SEO firms. But separately, since Google has been optimized for shopping and recency, it’s tended to work against smaller independent blogs and academic sites for some time. As I’ve repeatedly said, there is no way I could have written ECONNED in six months, in which I relied heavily on Google for fact checking and re-finding of stuff I’d read earlier, if it worked then (2009) the way it does now.
The Entrepreneur with the $100 Million Plan to Link Brains to Computers MIT Technology Review (David L)
Researchers prove the five second rule is real Aston University
Unintended Pregnancies Would Drop With Full Birth Control Options Offered TeenVogue. Dan K: “TeenVogue pushing policy. Not an earth-shattering article in itself, but nice to see, the kids need to know.”
Married Oklahoma GOP Senator Found in Motel Room with Underage Teen Male: WATCH https://t.co/1BkdENRuhp https://t.co/aQfUV0l3lP @rlrt. Chuck L points out that life has caught up with the famous quote by former Louisiana Gov. and felon Edwin Edwards: “The only way I’ll lose the election is if I’m found in bed with a dead girl or a live boy.”
China’s Continuing Credit Boom Big Picture (resilc)
London’s single market access will end with Brexit Financial Times. Important and wish I had had time to post on it, but I had a lot of competing demands. On the spectrum between posturing and sending a message, this is a hell of a lot closer to sending a message. Basic point is the UK’s claim that hurting the City will hurt the EU is bullshit and the EU knows it. The banks will relocate activities to the rest of the EU as needed.
Scotexit and Allocating the UK’s Debt Credit Slips. Note that per news reports yesterday, May seems confident she can block Sturgeon’s second referendum gambit.
Italian debate on merits of ditching euro grows louder Financial Times
Trump Meeting Saudi Prince Hailed as ‘Turning Point’ on Iran Fortune (resilc)
New Cold War
Hillary Clinton Campaign Was Connected To Russian Government ShadowProof (Judy B)
John McCain: Rand Paul ‘Is Now Working for Vladimir Putin’ Daily Beast (Dan K). So this is now what you say in Washington when you’ve run out of arguments?
Big Brother is Watching You Watch
A Very Dangerous WikiLeak Bloomberg. UserFriendly: “Just kill me.:
World Bank’s top economist says India’s controversial ID program should be a model for other nations Quartz. Jerri-Lynn provides more background: What is Aadhaar ? WhatIs.com
Imperial Collapse Watch
Can China leapfrog US in scramble for world’s best aircraft carrier? South China Morning Post (J-LS). Help me. Aircraft carriers are a cross between sacred cows and white elephants. See here for details. This has been known for a long time but no one is wiling to call off such a big ticket buying program.
Sweetest part of the judge's ruling striking down visa ban is its reliance on dumb statements by Giuliani & Stephen Miller https://t.co/mXfQBNOZZM
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) March 16, 2017
Trump in Graham’s cross hairs as Russia probe kicks off Politico (furzy)
Clinton Ally Says Smoke, But No Fire: No Russia-Trump Collusion NBC: “‘There’s no little campfire, there’s no little candle, there’s no spark. And there’s a lot of people looking for it.'”
Trump Budget Seeks Big Cuts to Arts, EPA, Foreign Aid Wall Street Journal
Comey will testify publicly on Russia investigation next week Politico (furzy)
‘People are scared’: Paranoia seizes Trump’s White House Politico (furzy). Given that they are in a cage match with the CIA, this isn’t “paranoia,” this is prudent. In fact, everyone should be doing stuff like this as a matter of course to reduce how much the surveillance state hoovers up about them. But having said that, this plus Trump’s pattern of creating competing power centers and letting them duke it out is very likely creating a counterproductive level of tension (IMHO, encouraging turf wars is a bad management practice. The success of Goldman is due precisely to managing aggressively to achieve the opposite result, of minimizing internal conflict save at the very most senior levels, where it is inevitable, so that as much energy as possible is directed towards making money).
Sullivan & Cromwell’s Brent McIntosh Is Picked for Treasury GC American Lawyer. Not a good look. Sullivan & Cromwell and Goldman are joined at the hip. An ex Goldman guy is running Treasury and the pick for #2 is also ex Goldman.
The Appealing Logic That Underlies Trump’s Economic Ideas Heather Boushey, Atlantic (resilc). Boushey does not have the public profile of a Serious Economist, but she is seen as serious by Serious Economists. Basically a credible DC insider who is on what that town perceives to be the far left flank. One quibble is that she talks about how much globalization has decreased world poverty. More recent stats may have changed this, but Joe Stiglitz said a few years back that the increase in incomes in poor nations took place entirely in China, that there was no real benefit to globalization anywhere else.
Strangers in a Cruel LandMatt Cameron, Baffler (resilc). On deportation.
Chelsea Clinton fuels speculation of political run The Hill (J-LS). How quickly can I get a passport to anywhere else?
There is literally an opioid epidemic destroying large swaths of America right now but ignorant assholes gonna ignorant asshole. https://t.co/5J9U9AwAyB
— Mike Duncan (@mikeduncan) March 15, 2017
Freedom Caucus to propose amendment to GOP health bill The Hill. In case you haven’t figured it out, anything acceptable to the Freedom Caucus is almost certain to be a no-go for more than a couple of Republican Senators.
GOP’s strange new politics: Going after seniors Seattle Times
Believing in Bernie Current Affairs (dougie)
— Jordan (@JordanChariton) March 15, 2017
Google tells army of ‘quality raters’ to flag Holocaust denial Guardian (furzy)
Vista to Buy DH Corp. for $2.03 Billion, Combine With Misys Bloomberg (PED). I had put this in 3/14 Links but see it is in the autosave but not the published version. What I said: “Wowsers. So Vista buys yet another bank IT dog, pretending it can fix it up and/or obtain synergies by cobbling it together with minimally related businesses at the dog it already owns, Misys, and keep given pretty looking valuations to investors?” Any readers who know the business of DH Corp are encouraged to pipe up in comments.
Trump Officials Are Learning How Hard It Is to Sell $1 Billion of Assets Wall Street Journal
The Not-So-Secret Life of Terrence Malick Texas Monthly (J-LS). Subhead: “The world’s most private director, Terrence Malick, turns his lens on the place where he’s always been most public: Austin.”
Surprising revelation: Janet Yellen reveals why the Fed is raising rates! Fabius Maximus. See our accompanying post today: February Jobs Report: Hitting on All Cylinders but Wages
How to Understand Globalization: Not Nations, But Class Real News Network (Sid S)
A great find We featured in Links: Charles Peters on Recapturing the Soul of the Democratic Party Washington Monthly (resilc). From UserFriendly: A Neoliberal’s Manifesto by Charles Peters via UnzReview. “Just got this in response; Hypocrisy much?”
Income Inequality Over The Past 100 Plus Years EconIntersect (Chuck L)
The Feminist Far Left Is Making More Enemies Than Allies New Matilda. UserFriendly: “Not the far left but great article.”
Economics: The architecture of inequality Nature (Tom H)
Antidote du jour (Robert H). A ptarmigan: