Links 3/28/17

Wolf spotted in Nevada is first in nearly a century The Oregonian

Three puzzles of the financial markets’ tug of war FT. “[I]s there actually fundamental economic growth underpinning the US economy, or is what the equity markets see as a pick-up in economic activity really just positive sentiment that could peter out? In effect, either we will see a convergence between sentiment and survey data and real economic activity data — or we won’t.”

Richard Bowen Is Skeptical of Citigroup’s Culture Makeover: Here’s Why Wall Street on Parade

‘Bro, I’m Going Rogue’: The Wall Street Informant Who Double-Crossed the FBI Bloomberg

What American manufacturing looks like in the Trump era CNN

Amazon’s shopping spree at business schools FT

Uber is reportedly ending its services in Denmark Reuters. Something rotten?

Inside Uber’s self-driving car mess recode

How Pedestrians Will Defeat Autonomous Vehicles Scientific American. Just as soon as they figure out how to game the algo…

California’s Proposed Rules Allow The State To Brick Your Self-Driving Car AV Treatise

North Dakota pipeline spill larger than previously thought Christian Science Monitor (GF). GF writes: “The ruptured Belle Fourche Pipeline pipeline in ND was 6″ in diameter and carried 1,000 barrels of oil a day and leaked over an estimated 12,600 barrels of oil (see article link below). The Dakota Access pipeline is 30″ and will carry over 500,000 barrels per day. The keystone XL pipeline is 36″ in diameter and will carry around 650,000 barrels of oil a day. If either the Keystone XL or the Dakota Access pipeline leaked for the same amount of time (12 days) as the Belle Fourche pipeline did, the results would be catastrophic.”

Your Favorite California Beach May Disappear Too Soon HuffPo (DL). Full text for study (PDF).


Angela Merkel toughens her position on Brexit FT

Brexit: Theresa May is backing away from threat to leave EU with ‘no deal’, believe European diplomats Independent

With Help from France’s Elite, Le Pen Tries to Steer Far-Right Party Into Mainstream WSJ. Hmm. Do we have any French readers who can give insight here? Does this make LePen more likely to win?

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

You have one day to stop Congress from giving away your web browsing history The Verge

NYPD sent video teams to record Occupy and BLM protests over 400 times, documents reveal Vice (MR).


Syria: Final evacuation of Homs begins under close Russian supervision Independent

U.S. To Escalate Its Two Years War On Starving Yemen Moon of Alabama

NYT Says Congress Has ‘Duty’ to Make War–Rather Than the Right to Reject It FAIR

New Cold War

Cheney: Russian meddling possibly ‘an act of war’ Politico. So will Cheney become a liberal icon now, like Bush?

Meet Alexei Navalny — the Russian opposition leader challenging Vladimir Putin Business Insider. Curious timing, if timing it be.

Russia’s Protests Explained: Why Rubber Ducks, Sneakers Are at Demonstrations NBC. Good branding.

White House asks Russia to release anti-government protesters Chicago Tribune

* * *

Russiagate’s Unasked Questions Philip Giraldi, The American Conservative. Well worth a read.

Sen. Grassley’s letter to Fusion GPS regarding Christopher Steele’s Trump Dossier (PDF; Howard Beale). So Steele was paid by Republicans, Democrats, and the FBI. Nice work if you can get it.

Visit to WH grounds by intel chairman clouds investigation AP. Is there a reason I should be as excited about this as the Twitter would like me to be?

Trump Transition

Trump requests — and receives — this infrastructure list from builders union McClatchy

Jared Kushner’s ‘innovation’ office will get advice from Bill Gates, Tim Cook and Elon Musk Yahoo Finance

Trump to pick Christie to chair drug commission, sources say Newark Star-Ledger. A part-time, volunteer position under the aegis of Kushner’s Innovation Office. Sad.

CEOs joining Trump: prepare for board of hundreds Reuters

Trump signs four bills to roll back Obama-era regulations USA Today. Via the Congressional Review Act.

Report: Trump wants to move tax reform, infrastructure together The Hill. The only player not splattered with the AHCA debacle is wily Mitch McConnell (whose wife, Elaine Chao, is head of DOT (highway money (ka-ching))).

The looming split between Trump and Ryan WaPo. “After a decade, 99.6 percent of the tax relief Ryan proposed would have accrued to the wealthiest 1 percent of the country. In Trump’s plan, 50.8 percent of the relief would have gone to that group, according to analyses by the nonpartisan Tax Policy Center.” Hmm. Maybe Ryan going down in flames on heatlh care wasn’t such a bad thing…

For Trump Administration, ‘Extreme Vetting’ Has Wide Scope WSJ. This is such a bad idea, because other countries will follow our lead, creating “walled gardens” (the most dystopian outcome in Philip Bobbitt’s The Shield of Achilles).

The Reclusive Hedge-Fund Tycoon Behind the Trump Presidency The New Yorker

Health Care

Five Lessons From The AHCA’s Demise Health Affairs. “3. The ACA Stole Most Of The Good Conservative Ideas.” For some defintion of “good.” Nice to see this become conventional wisdom.

Byron York: 14 lessons from the GOP Obamacare debacle Washington Examiner

Five Lessons From Trumpcare’s Collapse Jacobin

Back home, Freedom Caucus’ Meadows hailed as anti-Obamacare hero Politico (Furzy Mouse).

How to Build on Obamacare Paul Krugman, NYT. Never, ever….

2016 Post Mortem

Democratic [sic] Party Continues Shunning Popular Sanders Surrogates Counterpunch

KING: Democrats should oppose Trump and Republican Party — but also present better ideas New York Daily News. But the Democrats are doing that: The Russian war scare is that better idea!

Guillotine Watch

James Murdoch buys remote 450-acre retreat on fjord north of Vancouver Australian Financial Review (Hana M).

Class Warfare

No Need For Basic Income: Five Policies To Deal With The Threat Of Technological Unemployment Social Europe (DK).

‘They Think We Are Slaves’ Politico. “They” being au pair hosts, about whom the story gives little detail.

Break Up the Liberal City Ross Douthat, NYT

Protesters target Connecticut’s uber wealthy with ‘tax bills’ in bid to end loophole Guardian (Bob K).

A sign of the times: Merrimack River deluged with syringes Boston Globe (BC). America is already great.

From HIV to climate change: how to spot denialists in action New Scientist (KS).

How the baby boomers destroyed everything Bruce Cannon Gibney, Boston Globe (PU). A review of a new book by Globe columnist Jeff Jacoby (born in 1959).

Antidote du jour (Furzy Mouse):

Furzy: “Graham’s monitor.” I wonder what resolution it is…

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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About Lambert Strether

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


    1. Roger Smith

      Another huge problem is the inflation of having a degree. When the jobs requiring degrees don’t pay enough to live with the debt incurred from the degree, you have a well designed debt racket.

      On top of my steady full time job that should be financially stabilizing, I just had to join the emergent demographic of people with two jobs (evenings at Lowes). Thanks neoliberals, I did not care about trying to enjoy life anyways!

      1. Olga

        Maybe the time has come to frame my saved receipt for a semester’s tuition at a flagship state university (cca $500) and put it up for auction as a precious antiquities artifact… One day, it may end up in a museum.

        1. Cujo359

          My old alma mater was on the quarterly system, but IIRC, the tuition was roughly $300 a quarter. Over a summer, I could earn enough money to pay to go to the university’s local campus from home. Even when I had to live at the main campus, I could manage to pay the bills thanks to grants and a bit of help from my parents. That was in the 1970s.

          Now, I’d have had to go $10k or more in debt per year to go to that same university. People keep telling me we can’t afford to pay so much for people to go to college anymore. As a country, we’re as rich as we were back then. So that doesn’t make sense.

          I understand why young people are upset about this. They should be.

      2. Colonel Smithers

        Thank you, Roger.

        You have my sympathy. I hope matters get better.

        The neo-liberals are also happy with this (typical) situation. Why? If one has to work two (or more jobs), one does not have time to think (and challenge their hegemony). The debt (servitude) may make the debtor think twice about bringing the(ir) house down.

        Some years ago, David Cameron was moaning about the lack of family and leisure time, implying that he needs it, so that he can ru(i)n the country better, a common thought amongst the rich and powerful (from my days in private banking). It seemed a throw back to the days of the gentleman / amateur taking time off from his rural estate, grouse moor etc. and dashing to London for some politicking. Until the 1990s, the UK Parliament met in the afternoons only and not for a full week, enabling people to commute from their estates, professions etc.

        I see a correlation between countries like France and the UK. Personal debt is lower in France. There is also more time for oneself. People are more likely to protest in France. I accept that there are historical and cultural reasons, too.

        1. L

          It is worth pointing out that there are really two types of neoliberals. The first are the ones at Goldman or at the top of Amazon who are happy with the status quo because that is what makes them rich. They don’t have two jobs and they make their money expressly by draining everyone else.

          The second class of neoliberals are the true believers like dear old Rick Santorum. He is a former U.S. Senator and now conservative “health care analyst” who believes that having a preexisting condition makes you a thief.

          Santorum was always an unreliable voice for anything but he was a true believer in Neoliberalism because he genuinely believed that back in the halcyon days of the 50s (when he was 5 years old), that was how things were. And he believed that it would produce more family time because women should just leave work and stay home which would in turn open up all of their jobs to men who would then sit around the kitchen table and magically make money appear out of homespun wisdom and prayer.

          I’m of course being somewhat snarky with the last one but the fact is that many of the people who vote for neoliberalism, even elected officials do so not because they hate everyone but because they have constructed ever more arcane explanations for why it will eventually work. And in Economics there exists a whole profession dedicated to inventing new lies explanations for them to swallow.

          As one friend put it: “If we only cut more we will eventually get it right.”

          1. Colonel Smithers

            Thank you, L.

            How does Rick Santorum become a “health care anlyst”? What expertise does he have? He’s not the only one. These so called experts are on both sides of the pond? It’s like the talking heads on the Sunday shows, all hacks.

          2. Ian

            For a fun read look into Dan Savage of Savage Loves creation of a new definition of Santorum in honor of Rick Santorum.

      3. Marco

        Student Debt Jubilee Now Please! It’s time to start targeting Navient and Sallie Mae the same way protesters target oil companies. Disrupt the markets for student debt. If I had the time I would like to understand the “market” for student debt. Do pension funds own tranches of student debt CDOs? Who profits? Go after them and make it very inconvenient to be one of the rentiers in that system. What a horrible logic: accruing debt for a degree for a job market where the skills obtained from that degree are no longer needed or valid. Or in my case the skills simply out-sourced and off-shored.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          Do guns kill more people or do loans?

          What do the numbers say? Should we make loans illegal?

        2. Pookah Harvey

          Our new ‘populist” administration just rescinded Obama regulations that prevented debt collectors from charging high interest rates on overdue student loans. After which it was reported Navient shares soared.

          “The administration’s first move on the student loan default crisis will do nothing to stop the tidal wave of defaults that is sweeping across the nation,” said Rohit Chopra, a senior fellow at CFA and a former student loan ombudsman at the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. “With more than 3,000 Americans defaulting on a student loan every day, this just adds insult to injury.”

          This is not the country I grew up in. I’m of the 60’s generation that scared the sh*t out of the elites. They retaliated by a deluge of propagandists (Heritage, Cato, AEI, and foremost Fox) that have been unbelievably successful.

          I have great respect for the Millennials for their acceptance of an open society that the 60’s idealists could only dream of. Also great sorrow for the economic situation my generation has left them.

          We had a strait-jacketed society but with economic opportunity, Millennials seem to have an open society with a strait-jacketed economy. IMHO, don’t get despondent, get mad. But it does seem “the times they are a changin'”

          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            To UserFriendly, his response is ‘Don’t Go to College.’

            For one person to do so, it could be ‘unilateral disarmament.’ (You must arm yourself with a degree to enter the survival fight).

            We’d be committing a logical fallacy of composition to project the same to the whole…when everyone rejects credentialism.

          2. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

            Amen brothers and sisters. (“I’m of the 60’s generation that scared the sh*t out of the elites”). As someone who still has a scar on his head for giving an actual sh*t about a cause (the war) I look at the current crowd with complete disdain. All fired up about LGBT bathrooms and silent when America obliterates 200 women and kids in Mosul. Living in Mom’s basement but too busy taking selfies to join Occupy. All about “Me”, nothing about “We”. And look at the language from back in the day (“Amen brothers and sisters”), it was about SOLIDARITY not SELF-ABSORPTION. You love to blame boomers but the world you live in will be of your own making…you think we didn’t also have huge embedded structural problems left to us by our parents? (One of my early school memories was being instructed by teachers to practice diving under the desk because nuclear annihilation was seconds away). I say get mad, really mad, close the Instagram app, get up off the couch, and GO BREAK SOMETHING.
            “Power surrenders nothing without a demand” -F. Douglas

            1. Dead Dog

              All true Hal, and good post,

              but, we had a future back then, free speech wasn’t suppressed to the degree it is now, and our media didn’t lie, manipulate or distort the truth to the extent they do today.

              Yes we had the ever present risk of nuclear war.

              They have the ever present risk of dying before they’ve even had a life well lived.

            2. JerryDenim

              Amen on the whole bathrooms vs. reprehensible drone wars thing, but but honestly protesting Vietnam wasn’t exactly selfless if you were a draft-age male in the sixties. Had the Vietnam war been fought with an all-volunteer and mercenary force of contractors as our wars are now would the Boomer generation kids really bothered protesting?

              As a bitter gen-X’er I have my doubts. 9 out of 10 anti-war boomers from the sixties I have met never talk about what America did to the Vietnamese, Laotians and Cambodians. All I ever heard was how THEY (“me”) didn’t want to die for a war they didn’t believe in and how they (“me” again) should have at least been given the right to vote if their country was going to ask them to die. Totally fair propositions that I myself would have agreed with, if I would have been born at the time, still not exactly what I would call selfless though.

              I don’t blame Boomers for America’s current predicament, I blame neoliberalism. If blame must be directed at a generation for our current mess I would blame the Boomer’s depression era parents, the so-called “greatest generation” that didn’t bother to impart the lessons in their children they should have regarding monopoly power and unregulated finance. They knew first hand the dangers but did not pass those lessons on. I guess that’s the tragedy and the comedy of the human experience, each generation is doomed to repeat the mistakes of their parents and grandparents but with a slightly different twist. The same predictable battles must be fought over and over, but humans are always unprepared.

              1. JTFaraday

                ” the so-called “greatest generation” that didn’t bother to impart the lessons in their children they should have regarding monopoly power and unregulated finance.”

                I wonder how much understanding most people in this cohort actually had of the causes of the depression. The people I grew up knowing personally were kids during the depression, and also first generation Americans.

                No, I think the FDR Administration set up a political economy for people to participate in that they didn’t have to understand. And that’s what you have, people who thought that they can pursue their individual job or career or other form of economic and other self interest against a background that is perceived to be the natural and more or less permanent state of things, but which was actually highly contrived.

                The people in the best position to understand this fully were also in the best position to profit from changing it. Everyone else is still playing catch up.

      4. UserFriendly

        Even with a 2nd job I wasn’t making enough. I honestly just don’t care about anything anymore. It’s a damn racket that I see no way out of. Ever. So I just stopped trying.

        1. Roger Smith

          Ugh :/ The scenario in which we all find ourselves is a complete, rotting joke. The current political theater is worse than a stale soap opera, and nothing is getting better.

          “There are no more barriers to cross. All I have in common with the uncontrollable and the insane, the vicious and the evil, all the mayhem I have caused and my utter indifference toward it I have now surpassed. My pain is constant and sharp and I do not hope for a better world for anyone, in fact I want my pain to be inflicted on others. I want no one to escape, but even after admitting this there is no catharsis, my punishment continues to elude me and I gain no deeper knowledge of myself; no new knowledge can be extracted from my telling. This confession has meant nothing.”

    2. Kokuanani

      The only people who benefit from college are people who’s parents can afford to pay for it.

      I minor blip, but should be “whose.”

        1. craazyman

          all that tuition money and you can’t even spel rite.

          There’s a young lady in my office with $60,000 in college debt to pay down. She has no reason not to believe this is a normal thing. I told her “You guys have it bad. In my day college was cheap. We’d mostly party and drink alcohol. I also sat in the Frat house and smoked pot. Then I got drunk. I had no debt at all. Then I left and got a job on Wall Street (by myself with no connegtions I might add as an editorial remark that isn’t part of this comment here, so nobody think I’m some Daddy-Got-Him-a-Job guy. Getting a job wasn’t all that hard when I got out of college.).

          I asked her if she’d ever seen the movie Animal House with John Belushi. “It’s an old movie” I added, to put her at ease. She said she’d heard of it. “It was like that.” I said. She grinned a little but looked confused.

          I told her, “I feel very bad for you guys. For a society to load its young people up with debt is despicable.” Then I went into a rant about Obama appointing Jacob Lew as Treasury Secretary after his NYU 10-bagger paid for by student loans. Then I said “In history, usually people don’t get treated rite unless they demand it. Nobody’s nice to them. You guys are putting up with way too much and you don’t even realize it. You really are getting screwed and it’s utterly despicable.”

          She sort of looked at me funny, trying to understand something she had never seen or experienced. She’s not dumb at all but she had no money for college. What was she supposed to do? She’s from China so she can’t lay around and drink like I did. They don’t hold their liquor very well. But they can smoke dope! That’s for sure, based on the ones I met. You think their eyes are narrow now! Wait till you see them stoned! Actually her eyes are pretty normal looking. They’re kind of oval-shaped. Anyway, that’s not the point. The point is: How did it come to this? (That’s a rhetorical question). It’s really atrocious, just how bad it is. Does a country that pulls a stunt like this have anything at all to teach the world? No.

          1. UserFriendly

            I can’t spell worth a damn, that would be why I decided to study chemical engineering. Give me problems about optimizing reactions and minimizing waste or troubleshooting and I have no problem. Ask me to spell the elements and if I don’t have google and spell check I might get about 1 in 5 right. The only reason my typing is at all coherent is because I use TTS and listen to it before I hit send most of the time.

            I can name every country in Asia and South America and 97% of the rest of them on other continents, but I can’t spell more than half of them.

            1. Jim Haygood

              As we used to say, “Foar years ago I couldn’tt even spel ‘enjineer.’ Now I are one!” ;-)

            2. Oregoncharles

              Spelling in English is pretty arbitrary, so remembering it is a freak skill largely unrelated to intelligence, a particular type of visual memory. You wouldn’t have a problem in Spanish, which was engineered by a royal commission during the Renaissance.

              Efforts to regularize English spelling have always failed – George Bernard Shaw led one. The history of the language, which is a pastiche, is built into the spelling.

              1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

                Japanese is a lot like Spanish…you pronounce pretty much everything you see.

                I don’t know who engineered hiragana…Buddhist monks, maybe.

                1. Plenue

                  In practice Japanese regularly runs syllables together, or omits them (or nearly omits; they’re often very quiet), like desu frequently coming out more like dess. It’s rather like French in that.

                  And yes, Both hiragana and katakana were developed by Buddhist monks as an alternative to the extremely cumbersome practice of rendering Japanese phonetically with China hanzi characters (as in an entire complex Chinese character for every single Japanese syllable). Hiragana was used exclusively by women, katakana by men, because, uh, idiotic sexism I guess. They kept the two systems into the present day, hiragana for Japanese and katakana mostly for foreign/fictitious words, when they really should have just picked one or the other.

              2. craazyboy

                The Olde English were quite proud of their Capitalization Freedoms, as well. I read a contemporary historical English scholar exclaim once, quill pen in hand, ” I’m English, and I Capitalize anything I Want!”

                hahaha. I didn’t make that up.

                1. Plenue

                  It’s a holdover from English’s Germanic roots. German today still capitalizes every noun, and Dutch did it before spelling reform in 1948. Apparently there’s been discussion in Germany about doing away with the practice, since it doesn’t actually seem to serve any purpose.

              3. LarryB

                Mark Twain proposed a plan:

                For example, in Year 1 that useless letter “c” would be dropped to be replased either by “k” or “s”, and likewise “x” would no longer be part of the alphabet.

                The only kase in which “c” would be retained would be the “ch” formation, which will be dealt with later.

                Year 2 might reform “w” spelling, so that “which” and “one” would take the same konsonant, wile Year 3 might well abolish “y” replasing it with “i” and iear 4 might fiks the “g/j” anomali wonse and for all.

                Jenerally, then, the improvement would kontinue iear bai iear with iear 5 doing awai with useless double konsonants, and iears 6-12 or so modifaiing vowlz and the rimeining voist and unvoist konsonants.

                Bai iear 15 or sou, it wud fainali bi posibl tu meik ius ov thi ridandant letez “c”, “y” and “x” — bai now jast a memori in the maindz ov ould doderez — tu riplais “ch”, “sh”, and “th” rispektivli.

                Fainali, xen, aafte sam 20 iers ov orxogrefkl riform, wi wud hev a lojikl, kohirnt speling in ius xrewawt xe Ingliy-spiking werld.

                1. different clue

                  Somebody showed how you could re-transcribe a familiar story using other words which are “similar” to the “actual” words of the story itself. You just have to read it fairly fast with a semi-unfocused awareness.

                  This is the story of Ladle Rat Rotten Hut.

            3. McKillop

              Please don`t alow people to make you feel poorly of yourself because you `can`t spell worth a dam`; it`s one of those things that we pick up at school and is practiced to make us feel less worthy than others. Even great writers – not to mention newspaper hacks and others – have their problems with spelling English (my native and only language) and used proofreaders and spellcheckers long before computers came along. Still easy to find errors typographic and otherwise. Similar degrading attitudes were practiced concerning grammatical constructions and pronunciation.
              Language is a marker that helps people determine whether or not others should get an invitation to the party at the club. Lucky for us it`s also a tool to help describe what`s in the world – including snobs and snots.
              I think that neither crazyman nor other meant you to feel chagrined by spelling rites but notice how quickly you were made to be defensive despite your accomplishments in science and language. Some school teachers committed sins against students for which they should atone.
              Thanks for sharing your thoughts and experiences with educational debt and usury. I have people dear to me who also suffer needless poverty and have myself escaped only through good luck and good fortune.

          2. Jeremy Grimm

            Ancient Carthage had a similar appreciation for their youth — at least according to the Roman propaganda — and look where it got the Carthaginians. Moloch lives.

          3. Carolinian

            The good old days, when Playboy did articles about all the best party schools.

            Perhaps there’s a happy medium between the era when people didn’t take college so seriously and the current era when you have an all too serious $60,000 debt.

            1. SpringTexan

              I went to college when public college was cheap in Texas ($200/semester), and was extremely studious. There were plenty of people who didn’t sit around and drink.

              Small, esoteric classes that were very intellectually stimulating were on offer. :-)

      1. polecat

        “The only people who benefit from college are the DEANS, ADMINISTRATORS, RECRUITERS, & COACHES, who’s grifting can be afforded so as to be paid for it.”

        fify !

        PRIVATE EQUITY coming soon to a college near you !

        1. Roger Smith

          At the private university I used to work at, based on the info I heard, recruiters were not only making a finders fee, but a per credit commission for the entirety of that student’s career. It is completely absurd.

      1. UserFriendly

        Yours is much better sourced, and presents a thoughtful argument, I was going more for a quick and dirty hit that a high school kid might read. I’m trying to popularize the notion that it isn’t worth going right now with the hope that someone might actually notice it isn’t and do something about it.

        1. Plenue

          It shouldn’t be *needed* under any circumstance. A just society would be one where everyone could make a decent living at any job. You shouldn’t have to get additional schooling just to get to a place where you’re not desperately living paycheck to paycheck. Surely universities should in large part be places of learning for learning’s sake, for analysis and debate. For some things, like doctors and engineer, I expect the practitioners to have had years of rigorous additional schooling, but not every single job in society.

        2. footnote4

          @UserFriendly: Haven’t read your medium piece yet and am looking forward to it.

          But your comments reminded me of Ben Hecht’s description of the old-time journalists who started at papers right out of high school, if not earlier. They prided themselves on identifying with working stiffs. Members of the press would have found the idea of hobnobbing with the powerful to be repellent and absurd, since it was the job of the former to keep an eye on the latter.

          Politicians and business moguls were presumed corrupt until proven otherwise, and the media was not a sycophantic joke. Another way that NTC-guided “higher education” has destroyed our culture’s checks and balances.

    3. vidimi

      i think your ending is a little too dark and cynical. there are many redeeming features of life.

      1. UserFriendly

        Not in my life there isn’t. Not for the people who don’t go to college and can look forward to an early death.

        1. Dead Dog

          Economists used to describe education as a public good.

          Then our betters said that college degrees looked more like a private good – you get all the benefits, country none.

          I’m like CB, got degree for free, back when it was, and young kids just went to college to study, to be part of university life.

          Australian student debt is also non-dischargable, it’s very much like a tax debt. The diff is the govt always holds the note, can’t sell it on to profiteers. And the principal only increases by inflation rate each year. Still bad news for Aussie kids…and US/UK ones. Not a way for a country to treat its youngest, most vulnerable people.

          I think if I had your problem, though, I’d be moving

          Keep blogging UF

    4. freedeomny

      Years ago a college degree often automatically enabled you to get a good job. Also, a surprising number of kids went for liberal arts as it encouraged “critical thinking”. These days a college degree seems equivalent to a high school diploma…and to get a good job you are expected to get a masters. Specialized degrees are also encouraged. Several of my friends with kids have spoken to their children about going into “trades” or if they do go to college, into vocations such as nursing, physicians assistants and IT….

      1. IHateBanks

        I own and operate a car shop. There are ZERO college degrees on my staff. Including myself.

        The salaries for 2016 are as follows.
        $90-120k for each of 3 journeyman technicians with 10 years experience.
        $60k for the shop manager, who I rescued from a Ruby Tuesdays restaurant
        $31,200 plus performance bonuses for an apprentice fresh out of vocational program. If he develops into an average tech, he will make $50k within 3 years with no student debt.
        $25-30k starting salaries for 2 trainees, one each for front of house, and rear. If they develop,
        they may grow into sales, bookkeeping positions within 18 months, and will double their salaries
        within 3-4 years with a GED

        They have awesome healthcare, other benefits, holidays, etc. I make 15% of every dollar that walks in the front door.

        College is for dummies.

        1. Tvc15

          My two cents and ironic that I reply to IHB, because I work for one. I do not have a degree, yet the five colleagues I directly work with all have MBA’s from nationally known schools. I was chatting with my wife one day feeling under credentialed and said I feel like a fraud around my colleagues without a degree much less an advanced one. She matter of factually said, you are not the fraud. I think she quite succinctly summed up at least MBA’s. The pay grade range of my group is north of IHB’s 3 journey men technicians. Certainly not Wall Street salaries, but nice upper middle class from a large regional bank.

        2. Dead Dog

          Man, that is terrible. Go and get an MBA and you’ll be getting 50% of every dollar

          No, good on you. It is rare for someone to understand that you need to pay people well to get loyalty, low turnover and happy, engaged employees

          You don’t learn that at college.

      2. Oregoncharles

        There’s always a market for plumbers. And they make good money. They should – not a particularly pleasant job, but essential.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          Plumbing is not the oldest profession. Earliest plumbing probably existed at Mohenjo Daro.

          Pretty sure one could not get a plumbing job before that.

    5. LT

      And on top of the credentialism, there is the resume scam. I was talking to a friend the other day and we talked about how we have never gotten hired based on a resume.
      Now they’ve made resumes even easier to send out which is a detriment because it is mainly getting “in people’s faces” (so to speak) that will get a person hired.
      Algorithims throwing out resumes also bake in more discrimination (especially age based). A potential employer will never see the resume to even consider the skills and look past the age.

    6. Gaianne


      A fine rant. And its true! I especially like your last link which gives background and context.

      May you have many readers!


  1. MoiAussie

    US To Escalate Its Two Years War On Starving Yemen
    Good stuff from MoA as usual, drawing attention to a turn for the worse in the under-reported crisis in Yemen. A very good backgrounder to the US policy changes behind the spike in civilian casualties due to “coalitions” in Syria, Iraq and Yemen is Derek Davison’s piece Trump Takes Off Gloves, Punches Civilians.

    1. Carolinian

      The Post story that B links says a Trump admin decision of escalation is still in the future and there is so far no consensus

      Some advisers to President Trump share those same concerns, the senior official said. “There has been no decision yet as to whether [the restrictions] will be lifted. There is certainly broad disagreement across our government.”

      While acknowledging that some might see ending the limits as “a green light for direct involvement in a major war. . . . We can’t judge yet what the [review] results will be,” the official said, adding that the limits could be modified, removed or left in place.

      Mattis is the driver of this latest move it says.

    2. Stormcrow

      Yemen: Descending to New Level of Horror and Outrage

      Pentagon Heads Toward Escalating Genocide in Yemen
      Stephen Lendman
      Global Research, March 27, 2017

      As Yemen war enters third year, Pentagon moves to escalate slaughter
      By Bill Van Auken
      28 March 2017

      Moon of Alabama is good, but his analysis of the reasons falls short. Lendman and Van Auken are better.

      1. SpringTexan

        Thanks. I don’t like Moon of Alabama, he has a certain abrasive slant and I don’t trust him. But am very concerned about the Yemen situation. Will read these.

  2. bronco

    When the alt-left start polishing up Dick Cheney’s legacy they will surely have gone “full retard” .

    1. craazyboy

      Headwear goes in and out of fashion. What can one do?

      Maybe they are in thrall of his legacy as CEO of Haliburton?

      Haliburton has left us for a comfy and tax advantaged location in the popular Middle East. Maybe Dick(??) can convince them to come home again and offer tax free re-patriation (sp?) of the many billions they got from Uncle Sam Hat for the Potemkin Villages Iraq rebuilding “effort”?

      Could happen. Art of the Deal?

    2. Eureka Springs

      It should only be considered news if there were something, anything, Cheney didn’t consider war-worthy. I suppose HRC took the day off or something.

    3. fajensen

      They are only trying to avert tragedy, see? The alt-left knows that Cheney needs war somewhere or he will blast someone in the face with a shotgun!

    1. cocomaan

      You’re not kidding.

      “We do something called working backwards from the customer,” she says. “This requires people who are good at analysing and diving deep and saying, what does the data actually tell us?”

      Good God.

      If the data told you that you were abusing your warehouse employees, what would you say? NC ran a great series by a AMZ warehouse worker not long ago, loved that.

      1. Brian

        I am in wonder that folks think a deal can be had at Amazon. The only deal, like the one at Walmart, is that your town’s infrastructure dies, no one works on anything organic, all the money goes away, and then you are forced to purchase critical goods from a supply chain whose links can be easily severed.
        Chaos is yours for the demanding, no need to sow or reap

          1. JustAnObserver

            … and the LOW, LOW, prices that everyone has convinced themselves are the whole & only law and the only measure of value.

            Channeling yesterday – Crappified 2017 microwave has to be better ‘cos its cheaper than the ones from 20 years ago.

        1. Jen

          It’s not even that much of a deal on a lot of things.

          As it turns out, I can get the same vacuum cleaner parts from a local repair shop for no more than I’d pay at Amazon, and I get to talk to someone who actually knows what I will need.

          Shoes – no more expensive at a local, family owned business that provides excellent service.

    2. cyclist

      So these brilliant MBAs with their $150k starting salaries must be the ones coming up with the horrific working conditions at Amazon’s distribution centers. You can be sure the MBAs will not be based in Allentown, PA or Kenosha, WI!

  3. Moneta

    Re. Uber… it’s quite remarkable that cities have taken so long to force Uber to respect the law.

    It just goes to show where our leaders stand… uphold the law when it fits their ideology and ignore it when it does not fit with “innovation”.

    1. Kurtismayfield

      More like “Enforce the law when it negatively affects their economic well-being, and ignore it when it positively affects it”. I am sure many of a city official has zero problem with taking Uber rides that are highly subsidized and pay the driver less than the cab drivers make.

      Remember, laws are for the “little people”.

    2. Olga

      Some cities have… Houston has stricter regs, but when Austin tried to finger-print its drivers, Uber funded a recall campaign against the council member, who sponsored the fingerprinting requirement… Uber lost, but now the state’s legislature is trying to gut local-control authority… Where does one turn?

      1. JTMcPhee

        Gee, in Texas? With all these guns? Where an Old West expression about socially-bad people was “He needed killin'”?

    3. fajensen

      Most members of the “conservative” minority government believed that Uber was Totally Awesome and Disruptive, taking great care both in using the service and blabbing about it.

      I was secretly hoping that one of the worst of thar lot, Joachim B. Olsen, would be seriously injured in an Uber-crash and then finding out the hard way that a private insurance doesn’t cover a business (and since his party cut disability pensions and healthcare in general he would get eternal “job evaluation” instead of support – because personal pain & suffering – that is the only way these oiks ever learn).

      About 1/3 of the voters believed Cheap Taxi -> Good. 1/3 saw Uber as a scam and a more effective way to get ripped-off, robbed or raped than a normal taxi. 1/3 indifferent.

      I think the Tax Issues is what really moved parliament, they are taking a lot of totally justified flack for enabling tax evasion and fraud by running a ludicrously weak and underfunded tax control effort and by allowing people like Goldman Sachs to buy public businesses on the cheap and then take the profits out in a tax shelter.

      Last year the tax authority got ripped off to the tune of somewhere between 12 Billion DKK and 100 Billion, the 12 is what they admit so far (The 100 billion is about 10% of all taxes collected). Something had to be Done, Virtue Must Be Signaled.

      Uber mostly got into trouble, one suspects, because the majority of the tax cheating were done by the drivers …. normally, “we” don’t “do” corporations here! The politicians just changed the law to make “shared rides (for money)” work to the same standards that licensed Taxis must have.

      The next shoe to drop will be AirBnB, same problem, same concept – “go for the people doing the gigs” – will be applied.

    4. crittermom

      Upholding the laws or choosing to ignore them was in play long before Uber was born.
      Many millions of us can testify (providing proof) that same attitude existed regarding the TBTF banks over a decade ago. Even in local courts.
      We’re just seeing more of the same, but it has now spread to other areas, as well as being even more blatant.

  4. Hutch

    With deepest gratitude, I have to thank everyone at Naked Capitalism for not being all Trump, all the time. Every other news/political/financial site I read is just that. Some Trump is fine and reasonable, but it’s nice to read half-way down the links every morning and not be assaulted by every move Trump makes. If I want to go that route, there’s always Twitter. Thank you all!

        1. crittermom

          I triple that!
          Cheetos Von Pussengrabben doesn’t need any more publicity. It worked too well for him during the election, already.
          Like Obummer/Obomber, I already wish he’d just go away.

    1. Colonel Smithers

      Let’s short the London property market :-). It’s not just London. My home county, Buckinghamshire, has Russian enclaves (Beaconsfield and Towcester).

      My old school (where the likes of Richard Branson and David Niven were educated) has a lot of Russian pupils and has become a fortress. Boxing and ice hockey clubs have been set up since the influx began a dozen or so years ago.

    2. vidimi

      while i don’t think this is something russia would do willingly, i do believe there is substance there as they have been threatened with being kicked out of swift over ukraine. the rational response to those kinds of threats would be to plan for the worse – the opposite of what syriza did in their negotiations with the troika.

  5. Carla

    “[I]s there actually fundamental economic growth underpinning the US economy, or is what the equity markets see as a pick-up in economic activity really just positive sentiment that could peter out? In effect, either we will see a convergence between sentiment and survey data and real economic activity data — or we won’t.” — Financial Times

    This incisive analysis seems to me to be akin to: “Either the world will end tomorrow, or it won’t.” So I read the article. Sure enough, the author basically says “we can’t tell ‘nothin” about the real economy from the stock market,” but it will all be clear in three months. (And if it isn’t, everyone will have forgotten about her prediction.) Thanks, FT.

    1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

      It’s pretty hard to describe it as an “economy” any more since money is now completely decoupled from work. Janet hits Crtl P on her computer and the top of the pyramid gets the flow from the spigot, they use some to “trade” (like JP Morgan, where the trading desk did not have a single day when they lost money in the last year, siphoning an avg $80M per day). The free manna then flows to corporations, who use it to buy back shares and pay dividends. This in turn makes “stocks” go up, with 85% of gains going to 8% of the population. With 40% of the “economy” now financialized (as compared to 5% in 1980) various other financial grifting schemes kick in and take their cuts. When the poor citizen/slobs trying to grow a crop or deliver a service are done running this gauntlet they must run the next gauntlet, the government tax and regulation racket: 17% of GDP in 1920, currently at 43% and rising. Once through that one there are various subsidiary rackets, the “try not to die today” racket (health care), among many others. “What, then, shall be done?” V. I. Lenin

  6. Colonel Smithers

    With regard to the link to and question about Marine Le Pen, my hunch, as a regular visitor to France and francophone, is no. The outreach helps in avoiding scaring the establishment and to soften MSM (neo-con and neo-liberal) hostility, but it is not enough and is probably too late. I have not seen this development covered by the MSM, even Le Figaro. David and French Guy are probably in a better position to comment.

    1. David

      Unfortunately I can’t get past the paywall for the WSJ – perhaps someone could post a few extracts. The French media isn’t saying this, it’s rather pushing Macron’s candidacy for all it’s worth. This morning’s news was of a relatively obscure Minister from Fillon’s 2007 government joining Macron, and there’s a drip-drip of similar stories intended to build Macron up as the inevitable winner. For her part, of course, Le Pen wants to win and will take what help she’s offered, just as the French establishment are probably hedging their bets. Pinch of salt, please.

      1. Colonel Smithers

        Thank you, David.

        The French MSM’s coronation of Macron is depressing, isn’t it.

        I was in a cab from Gare du Nord to near the Arc a couple of weeks ago and asked the cabbie, probably from West Africa, about the election. He gushed about the progressive, non establishment and right on Macron. That dog whistle about Algeria and rise from seemingly nowhere seem to have done the trick.

      2. Colonel Smithers

        I forgot to ask David about the French MSM not talking about Macron having little backing in the national assembly if he wins the presidency.

        Macron has proposed proportional representation, a sop to Francois Bayrou’s (neo-)liberals, but PR would benefit the FN and left, too. Macron is a neo-liberal, so this sop would lead to political paralysis, if not crisis, which suits his paymasters. Fiendishly clever, eh?!

        1. David

          Well it would create a relatively stable situation in which the same parties would be in government a lot (think of Germany or the Netherlands). This could produce a kind of permanent coalition with Macron at the centre of it, which I actually think is his long-term aim.

      3. Dead Dog

        thanks David and Colonel.
        In Australia, we hear nothing about the French elections and this time is as important as ever. Kudos for NC keeping a light on this.
        Disappointing outlook, though, I had thought Le Pen would be the best person at this time for the French.

      4. PlutoniumKun

        I’ve not been following in detail, but the latest polling is interesting – Hamon seems to be tanking (along with Fillon) while Melanchon is doing well – I wonder if he is taking votes from Hamon or from Le Pen. If Hamon was to back out, there could be a real chance of Melanchon overtaking Fillon at least, and maybe even getting into the second round.

        I recall reading an analysis some time ago showing that Le Pen had a very strong vote in traditional radical left wing areas. A strong Melanchon would be a significant thread to her.

  7. Marco

    Shorter Krugman on how to improve ObamaCare: give insurance companies more money. If only that man could fall into a very deep dark hole and never be seen or heard (or write) again.

    1. middlebrow

      Yes, and he also seems to persist in conflating “insurance” with “health care”. Health care is NOT insurance. It’s health care. Insurance is the problem.

    2. Roger Smith

      How many thousands does this pathetic airhead get paid to write this garbage? For such a smart guy who knows how simple it is… he sure has a stupid answer. Hows about we cut out insurance companies altogether Paulie? That would seem to eliminate… well every problem you brought up. No more worrying about competition, or deductibles, or membership…

      It is also laughable that this moron thinks the death spiral is made up… even after addressing the root cause (that is not going to get better). Oh but he’d also suggest a conspiracy! Trump is going to make the system fail on purpose! Because somehow, HE is responsible for “OBAMA”care now!

    3. No Way Out

      Krugman knows next to nothing about insurance. He probably bought a policy once or twice, though as a tenured Ivy League professor, they certainly were not for health insurance. And why he thinks his math is the same as what actuaries spend 5 years learning (after a college BS in math) is beyond me.

    4. Greg Gerner

      My Monday, March 27th comment to Krugman’s Op-Ed (sent after I stopped gagging): What’s “obvious” to any reader of this column with an IQ above room temperature is that Krugman’s raison d’etre is the perpetuation of the corrupt status quo in American health care and the political caste (both parties) that profit from it. Krugman, Number 1 Fanboy of she who famously said, “Single payer health care will never, ever happen.” This, of course, was merely Hillary’s declaration of the official (but unstated) Democratic Party line. Stop deluding yourselves that it is those mean old Republicans that stand between you and single payer/Medicare for All. It’s the Democratic Establishment and their mouthpieces like Krugman. The truth shall set you free.

    5. Pat

      IOW, Krugman is doubling down on the failure that is Obamacare by choosing to “provide more profits for Insurance, Pharma and Private Hospital top management on the backs of the public both in taxes and mandated premiums, oh and demand even less health care for that by ignoring the loop holes they are all indulging in already.”

      Paul, if you want to “fix” ACA:
      1. Mandate insurance companies to provide silver care at cost with a medical loss ratio of only 7%. IOW, you must provide a non-profit base policy in any area where you sell insurance or you don’t get to sell insurance there.

      That is just the beginning, but a good way of looking at it is examine the Swiss program, put back everything the Insurance and private medical took out. Including price controls, a real base program that is more extensive with far fewer variations, and a subsidy that doesn’t have a cut off. IOW the government has a real concern about premiums because well eventually they will be subsidizing almost everyone otherwise.

      But forget saving Obama’s piece of garbage, lets do Medicare for All and work on strengthening any thing that threatens that. (For instance I can see needing to require participation by providers, for instance say at least 25% of your patients MUST be Medicare or Medicaid or your license is voided.)

  8. Pelham

    Re the item on baby boomers ruining everything, in part because they didn’t save enough money: Last year Deutsche Bank did a study of the US economy that concluded the current recovery is weak and likely to tip into another recession in part because the average household savings rate is now about 5.4% (and that “savings” rate, perversely, includes paying down debt).

    But what have boomers and everyone been advised the minute they enter the job market? They’re told to save a MINIMUM of 15% of their income before taxes toward retirement — and that’s not counting savings for their kids’ educations and for emergency funds. So what if the boomers had followed that advice?

    If the economy is verging on recession with a 5.4% “savings” rate, what kind of depression-level destruction would a 15% rate of savings have wrought? It’s only the boomers’ spending that provided any kind of economic opportunity at all, especially for all those Gen X’ers and Millennials out there pointing fingers back at the boomers.

    1. Olga

      Not to mention that most people would have a very hard time saving 15% and paying all their (necessary) expenses.

      1. Gary

        You would have to remain childless, single and never sick a day in your life… that’s not much of a life.

        1. RUKidding

          Not necessarily. I’ve had a great life and fit in your definition. Childless by choice, single (often) by choice and rarely get sick. It’s great to have excellent health. I’m grateful for it.

          Not everyone would be happy with my lifestyle, but I am. And yes, it has enabled me to save more than the average bear with kids. I’m grateful for that, too.

          But it shouldn’t HAVE to be this way – that is, you should be able to have a family and not go broke doing so.

          1. SpringTexan

            Yes. I’m not blaming anyone, but people CAN save more than they do (including me) if they take some of the advice of people like Elizabeth Warren and her daughter in their excellent book: or of say Suze Orman (yes I know a lot of people love to hate on her, but much not all of her advise is decent).

            Even with the deck stacked, people can help themselves by their actions if they learn what to do. And many Americans do still manage to have a pretty enjoyable and fairly secure life if they have decent luck (which no one can’t count on).

          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            And having children is no guarantee of a safe old age.

            They’d be busy working for their own survival, often in other parts of the country (or world).

            “We are breaking up families by sending them out of this country!!!”

            So, one can not count them to make sure nursing home staff don’t make mistakes with one’s medicine, or one is being treated with dignity, especially if one lives to be 80+.

      2. Tom_Doak

        If everyone had made savings the first priority, they would have told the real estate agent they could only afford a $200,000 house … and house prices would not have gone to $500,000 and made all of them debt slaves.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          We didn’t get to $500,000 a house without foreigners scheming and interfering with our domestic economy, by buying up a lot of houses.

          “They stole our housing affordability.”

          The unsubstantiated accusation is that they’ve also lowered Americans’ credit scores.

    2. Eureka Springs

      Uh, most people call it social security. Add the 5.4 (such as it is) to it and you are well over 15%.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Paying for a house mortgage is akin to saving money.

        Is it included in that 5.4 percent?

    3. vidimi

      but the US IS going through a savings glut.

      indeed, the very wealthy, those who reap most of the benefits from policy, are saving more and more of their money in offshore trusts.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          The only thing necessary for neoliberalism to triumph is for good men (and suffrage women) to do no voting (against the neoliberal candidates).

          In that sense, anyone who didn’t vote against Billy Clinton must look at themselves in the mirror…as well.

      1. pebird

        Baby Boomers weren’t the only demographic around then. I believe the “Great Generation” had a fair amount of responsibility for Reagan. The Democrats also did a great job with candidates – “Where’s the beef” Mondale and Mike “The Tank” Dukakis.

      2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Who then is responsible for Obama’s two victories?

        Joint effort by millennials and baby boomers?

        1. John k

          I’m not proud of my votes for anybody that won. Even LBJ, the only progressive… did some good things, but balanced with Vietnam, which ended faith in gov and brought us Reagan.

          But remember the alternatives the two neolib parties have presented us with, not least the last election. Looking back, only the neolib gore would likely have been better. Not that he deserved to win given the poor campaign.

    4. JerryDenim

      I’m not a big fan of the boomer generation but I found the “blame the boomers” piece to be quite objectionable. The whole article seemed like a deliberate smokescreen to deflect blame away from our failed neoliberal policies and financialization at a time when many young Americans are getting fed up with our current system of crony, neoliberal capitalism and ready to explore alternative models. If every instance of the word “Boomer” was replaced with “neoliberal” the article would have been much more honest and better for it.

  9. Olga

    White House asks Russia to release anti-government protesters Chicago Tribune
    Of course, it does… wonder what the response would be if Kremlin asked US not to jail and prosecute DAPL protesters… (and this is not mean to equate the two sets of protesters; DAPL folks at least have a real cause)

  10. Kokuanani

    When following the link to the Those Horrid Baby Boomers article, it lists the author not as Jeff Jacoby, but as

    Bruce Cannon Gibney is a venture capitalist and writer


    Are we surprised?

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      So to be clear, “venture capitalist” is the trendy “inherited daddy’s money.”

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Or ‘inherited mommy’s genius level IQ.”

        What’s wrong with that?

        Nothing…just that that gift was not taxed.

      2. polecat

        yeah .. “venture capitalist” …… meh !

        I seem to remember a while back stating how I thought venture capitalists where malevolent punk$, no better than hedge funders …. and was admonished by some here for implying such !
        ‘They only put capital to ‘good’ use …. sure .. right !

    2. JerryDenim

      Noticed that too. Funny how every single malady the author attributed to rotten baby boomers could more accurately be blamed on neoliberal capitalism and its proponents.

  11. Colonel Smithers

    Thank you to the NC commentariat for yesterday’s thread about Frank Rich. Similar comments to Rich’s have been made in the UK, especially after Brexit and in rags like the Guardian and Independent, and are beginning to be made in France.

  12. cnchal

    How the baby boomers destroyed everything Jeff Jacoby, Boston Globe (PU). Jacoby was born in 1959

    The blame game, or the pot calling the kettle, black.

    From Jacoby’s Wiki page:

    In 2000, Jacoby was suspended by the Globe for four months without pay for what the paper called his “serious journalistic misconduct” in failing to provide sources for a Fourth of July column on the fate of the signers of the Declaration of Independence. Although the themes and ideas in the column had already appeared in other media outlets, Jacoby neglected to mention that the column’s content was not original. The Globe “avoided calling the column a work of plagiarism.”. . .

    Boomers are described as sociopaths, and although it is too broad a brush to paint all people of an age cohort as sociopaths, it is an apt characteristic for himself.

    The peasant boomers are totally at fault for having their jawbs ripped from their hands and shipped to China and Mexico. The peasant boomers are totally at fault for the boomer economists pronouncements from their throne at the policy table, whose policies destroy everyone except the very rich. The peasant boomer is totally at fault for the US health care disaster.

    Jacoby, who swims in elite land has no clue. Politicians, to a man or woman, are self selecting narcissists that want to get elected, and the motivation is ego gratification. Once they achieve that goal, the sociopaths and psychopaths surrounding them call the shots.

    His article would make more sense if it were titled “How narcissists, sociopaths and psychopaths destroyed everything” and left boomers out of it.

    1. winstonsmith

      The article and book are actually by Bruce Gibney, a wealthy venture capitalist whose hobby is to try to recast class warfare as generational warfare to take the heat off himself and his rich friends.

      His age is conspicuously absent from his wikipedia page, but he seems to be a post-boomer.

      1. cnchal

        My mistake, from links. Thanks for pointing it out. My ire can be directed at the correct sociopath now.

        The whole article pissed me off. This is near the beginning.

        The root illness remains undiagnosed, but here it is: the baby boomers, that vast generation of Americans born in the first two decades after World War II. The body politic rests on the slab because boomers put it there, because decades of boomerism produced the problems and disaffection of which 2016 was merely the latest expression.

        Further down

        Boomers weren’t genetically predestined to be dysfunctional; they were conditioned to be. They were the first generation to be raised permissively, the first reared on television and subject to its developmental harms, and the only living group raised in an era of seemingly effortless prosperity. Can too much license, TV, and unearned wealth distort personalities? May I suggest looking south toward 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue?

        Pure victim blaming. As for his aside about unearned wealth, I agree that many boomer aged Wall Street criminals have lots of unearned wealth. So do those older and younger than boomers. As a vulture capitalist, Gibney ought to recognize all of his wealth is unearned, but sociopaths never point the finger at themselves.

        1. Whine Country

          While I will agree that ALL Boomers are not equally bad, I find it hard to believe that anyone would argue that the author was speaking of the entire cohort. Maybe the article should have been titled: How Baby Boomer narcissists, sociopaths and psychopaths destroyed everything. Also, I’d like to remind you that shooting the messenger is not an argument anymore than blaming the Russians. The fact is that all politicians were not “self-selecting narcissists that wanted to get elected…for ego gratification” prior to my, Baby Boomer, generation, but, assuming your statement is true, they are now. As far as your rather silly comments regarding peasant boomers, are you arguing that since they are blameless that one should be equally understanding regarding the well-off boomers who actually did those deeds? I will wait to read the book before I use bogus arguments to discredit the ideas that the author wishes to discuss.

          1. different clue

            Why do you find it “hard to believe that . . . . “? When that’s just exactly what Gibney is making such a clear point of saying? “The entire cohort” is what the author makes crystal clear he is exactly speaking of.

      2. Katharine

        Having finally found that page, I see that his Stanford roommate was Ken Howery, and his page says he was born around 1975 or 1976, so ballpark, Gibney is just over forty.

        Stanford was not cheap. Did his boomer parents put him through school? Was he himself just a spoiled brat who’s still hitting back at his family? After some two decades of throwing his own weight around financially, can he really suppose he bears no responsibility for the way things are?

        So many questions, but the greatest is still, why would anyone take this guy seriously?

        1. different clue

          Because his book will be useful propaganda for the Catfood Democrat program of not paying us back for the Social Security for which we have been prepaying double ever since the Reagan Rescue of 1983.

          That’s why the whole OverClass and all its MSM propagandists and psy-operatives will take this guy seriously.

      3. JerryDenim

        “recast class warfare as generational warfare to take the heat off himself and his rich friends.”

        Excellent summary! I might perhaps characterize his intentions as “redirect” but yes, you hit it right on the head.

    2. FriarTuck

      I waded through Gibney’s book, and I can’t agree with his conclusions. There are some points in the book where there’s a logical leap to make his conclusion; it is more like the book is designed to be a agitprop against “olds.”

      My problem with the whole age cohort thing is that by framing the discussion that way, people who were present during the times that discussed decisions were made feel that they have little to no responsibility for those actions. This distributed attribution causes rationalized abrogation of guilt – the same kind where people hear a mugging and don’t call the cops because they aren’t personally responsible because they think someone else will handle it.

      As a millennial, I really don’t know how to feel about this. On the one hand, you look at the results and what actually happened – the policies enacted by society while this age cohort was in prominence do look like they’ve messed up US society. On the other hand, there were a great many people in that same age cohort did not directly have a hand in the implementation of these policies or actively fought against them. Yves commonly says age cohorts have no agency — though I guess I would argue that societies (and the age cohorts that have been empowered through our political system) exert agency through political organizations, ie government.

      Yet, should an entire age cohort be tarred with the same brush? Gibney’s book makes that assumption from the outset and that’s where I take issue with it. Perhaps the tendency of young people to do so is the result of lax enforcement within government – the refusal of those in power to expel and punish those abusing the system (monopolies, banks, Wall Street, former politician war criminals, etc) undermines that system and causes the whole thing to become suspect.

      What scares me is that a great many people (not in the NC community) seem to think that this is fine and manageable. I would have thought that Trump’s election would have disproved that, but apparently not.

    3. justanotherprogressive

      Jacoby’s article is a rant, but there are some truths in it that we, especially we boomers, should not ignore.

      Jacoby is right that ours is the first generation that was exposed to neoliberal propaganda from birth. Boomers were the first generation that was told that in order to be “worthy” you had to be, not “like” your neighbors, but “better” than your neighbors, and the way to be “better” was to buy, buy, buy! If you can’t afford to by, well, here’s cheap credit to help you keep up the buying! And BTW, what’s your wife doing?

      Jacoby is also right that neoliberalism didn’t take over by itself – it was helped by useful idiots – those people who ignored what they could see that it could do to a society (anyone remember Chile anyone) but could only see what they thought it could do for “me”.

      The boomers WERE the people who brought an end to Viet Nam, supported Civil Rights and equal rights, but when the promise of dollars was waved in front of our faces, we forgot all our altruistic tendencies and ran like a herd of startled cattle after those dollars. And in our chase for those dollars, we stomped on unions and we stomped on those safety nets that were so important to us previously. We went to the polls and voted for people who would stomp on others (for our benefit, of course) without realizing that if someone is willing to stomp on other people, they are also willing to stomp on you……

      There were people trying to tell us where this would all go. I remember John Andersen trying to tell Republicans where Reagan would take them. I remember Howard Zinn and Gore Vidal, among others. So it isn’t like we didn’t know – it’s just that we put on the blinders so that nothing would distract us from our dollar chase.

      So we now feel in competition with our neighbors, and instead of sharing the communal pain we feel, we are afraid someone is going to get something more than us so we refuse to vote for the things that will help all of us, we engage in identity politics, and we sold out our children and grandchildren’s futures so that we could accumulate. And for what? That new car?

      I know, I know. Boomers just do NOT want to hear this – they really want to think that they’ve lived righteous and virtuous lives, but sometimes saying “Yea, we f**ked up” is cathartic and it is necessary to remove barriers that keeps us from working together to fix this.

      You may not want to hear this, but talking to millennials in my family and at school, I can tell you they already blame us – we aren’t going to get off scot-free for our behavior no matter how hard we “push back”. Perhaps, it’s time to stop pushing and start listening/joining with them?

      1. cnchal

        What, exactly, are the millennials blaming boomers for doing?

        Here is a link to the Powell Memorandum. Have them read his plan to crapify everyone’s life, except for the very rich. Not written by a boomer.

        1. justanotherprogressive

          I’ve read the Powell Memorandum. I know there were neoliberals plotting to take over the government back as far as the Goldwater loss. But these men didn’t do it by themselves. They didn’t hold a gun to our heads, did they? Do you remember seeing any tanks in the streets? We voted in those people who destroyed us. Why?
          If you subscribe to the Great Man theory of History, then when MLK and RFK were killed, there were no other Great Men to lead us so we naturally fell back to accepting the propaganda.
          Other theories have other beliefs about why we made such a turnaround – but nobody can deny that it was US citizens that allowed the neoliberal takeover……and that is the hardest thing for us to accept, isn’t it?

          1. cnchal

            > We voted in those people who destroyed us. Why?

            They made promises that they would take money from someone else and give it to you. And you believed them. Only part of the promise was kept, the taking of money, for themselves.

            Imagine a politician comes up with a plan to right the ship, which involves getting money out of politics (one can speculate), a super high marginal tax rate on all income over a million dollars per year, and an estate tax much greater than 50% on all estates greater than some arbitrary number below let’s say $5 million, to whittle down the political distortion fields caused by these massive inheritances.

            What would be the odds of success at getting elected, under current conditions?

            The best answer I can find is zero.

            What, exactly, are the millennials blaming boomers for doing?

              1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

                LOL the “socialism” canard. Here’s the dirty little secret: we already HAVE socialism, just not the kind for you and me. The kind we have is for:

                the Financial-Industrial Complex;
                the Energy-Industrial Complex
                the Surveillance-Industrial Complex
                the Military-Industrial Complex
                the Government-Industrial Complex
                the Health Care-Industrial Complex
                the Tax Haven-Industrial Complex

                Take away the trillions in socialist gifts and handouts for these lovely folks and hand them over to the poor citizen/slobs and we’d have an economic Renaissance. The irony is that the above crowd would boom as a result, too.

                So don’t imagine we have “capitalism”, we have bigtime, fulltime socialism for the above. Actual capitalist “creative destruction” is reserved for the likes of you and me.

              2. JerryDenim

                High regards for socialism: The exact same thing was true of the Boomer’s Depression era parents because they too witnessed the failures and pitfalls of unbridled Capitalism. The Depression-era parents of the Boomers failed to transmit the lessons of their experience to their children. Instead of inculcating their children with the dangers of unregulated finance and concentrated monopoly power the depression-era parents of the Boomer cohort falsely assumed those battles were over and instead focused on the culture wars that defined the period of time when their children came of age. Their children concluded their parents were bunch of puritanical, out-of-touch oldies who knew nothing and went on to repeat the mistakes of their grandparents. Now we’re right back where we were in 1929. The wheel of history turns with generations swapping places.

            1. JTFaraday

              I understand where you’re coming from– I still feel this way when I see vicious deplorables in action– but it’s all very easy in hindsight.

              Someday the next generation(s) will be asking you why you didn’t, let’s say, stop the growth of the technological surveillance state and its accompanying police powers while you still had the chance.

              Maybe it will be “why weren’t you a proper civil libertarian?” or whatever. By which point you’ll be bent over your knees holding your head in your hands.

          2. Katniss Everdeen

            Who is this “we” and “us” you keep referencing? I am a boomer and you don’t speak for me. The clintons are boomers as well, and I am proud to be a member of the boomer cohort that came together a few months ago to help drive a stake through the heart of that cancer that happened to be born around the same time I was.

            If you have any influence over millenials, as family members or students, it is incumbent upon you to disabuse them of the notion that what is happening in this country today can be explained purely on the basis of birth year. You do neither yourself nor them any favors, by meekly accepting responsibility for a sad state of affairs on behalf of an entire generation, many of whom have been as devastated as millenials by current policies, and have far less time or means to recover.

            The politics of divide and conquer are breaking down. The wedges of race or sexual orientation no longer pack the punch they used to. The proles are waking up to the fact that “it’s the economy, stupid” is far more than just a bogus campaign slogan used by a bogus political boomer hack.

            Knowledge is power. Blind acceptance of misplaced responsibility is exploitative.

            1. Pookah Harvey

              Saying the previous generation has no responsibility for the current situation is a cop out. Somebody voted in Reagan and Clinton and it wasn’t the Millennials Do they have a right to be pissed, yeah I think so. But just telling them that it isn’t the Boomers fault.will not heal the rift. Yes the Boomers were lied to, but we believed the lies. We have to admit we erred and heal the rift by doing exactly what you have stated that you have done…work for a better future for everyone.

              1. JerryDenim

                The Millennials voted in Obama- twice. Their generation bought the marketing and sloganeering of an empty suit speaking false words in 2008 and 2012. Hell, most millennials I know are so stupid they still think Obama was the greatest thing ever so I’m pretty sure they would have made the same electoral mistakes of their fore-bearers under the same circumstances. That said, millennials are also responsible for bringing Bernie Sanders within a hair’s width of the Democratic nomination for President, so they may redeem themselves in the voting booth yet.

                If healthcare, housing and college was still cheap and jobs plentiful the millennials would be just fine with the corrupt status quo just as their parents were before them. This country has been a mean, nasty, unjust capitalist predator that fattens itself on the poor and weak since its inception. First it was the land and the native peoples who were abused, then it was immigrants and African slaves. Now it’s white people who play by the rules and people think something is different. The system has ran out of unobjectionable people to predate. White and college educated are now fair game.

            2. SpringTexan

              Yep, blaming any generation is a sucker’s game. Just another way to set the peasants against one another.

            3. Elizabeth Burton

              Amen, sister! I have been battling for the last two years the efforts of the establishment to drive a wedge between those of us old enough to remember raising hell in the streets to end an illegitimate war and risking death to end segregation and Jim Crow and the generations rising to pick up the torches.

              I didn’t do any of those things. Indeed, for far too long, having come from a totally conservative rural background—you know, those deplorable types—I was woefully ignorant of most of what had gone on outside my restricted viewpoint. I’ve learned a lot since then, most of it in those same last two years when I looked up and discovered a lot of rich people had stolen my country.

              Yes, those of us labeled “boomers” made mistakes, but that’s the problem with being human. Allowing the PTBs to brainwash the generations who are the last hope into focusing on us instead of on the real villains will be disastrous.

              1. Pookah Harvey

                The elites are very good at divide and conquer. They are trying to divide generations using lies. The best lies have a kernel of truth.

                Boomers grew up with low tuition, high minimum wage, and good prospects for a middle class life. 40 years later Millennials see themselves $50,000 in debt to get a job as a barista with no healthcare and rent that sucks up their wages. Something has drastically changed. Boomers have been there on the front line during all that change and to throw up our hands and say “We didn’t have anything to do with it ” is a pretty poor defense. We have to admit we, as Gus Grissom said, “screwed the pooch”. That’s the kernel of truth. We did it to ourselves as well as to them. The mitigating circumstance is that the elites had gone into overdrive and gotten very good at lying to the public. Before the internet was available discovering we were being lied to was more difficult to discern.

                Ignoring our culpability just feeds the rift elites are trying to create.

                1. roadrider

                  We have to admit we, as Gus Grissom said, “screwed the pooch”. That’s the kernel of truth.

                  Not true at all. Grisson vehemently denied causing the explosive bolts on the hatch to fire which resulted in the capsule sinking. After the capsule was recovered back in the n902 he was proved right.

                  The rest of your post is just a bunch of silly claptrap.Not every Boomer voted for Reagan, is bankrupt or a defender of the MIC, Wall St and the corporate state. Most of us who opposed all of that could do virtually nothing to prevent any of it from happening and its not like there weren’t any younger people who voted for Reagan or who even today defend the entire sclerotic, kleptocratic oligarchy.

                  I don’t blame the millennial generation for Obama (because plenty of my generation also voted for him). They got sucked in the way people of my age group got sucked in by Clinton (Bill). Blaming generations is just stupid. They’re not monoliths and very, very few have any influence at all at the top levels. That’s not “throwing up hands” and saying “we had nothing to do with it” That’s just recognizing reality.

                  Look, America sucks, The more of its history I read the more I realize that it always sucked. The suckitude has been baked into America, Americans and American society since a bunch of uptight, intolerant religious bigots who passed themselves off as victims (never mind that they wanted to treat anyone not like them in the very same way they said their oppressers treated them) sailed to its shores and claimed ownership of a land that was already, you know, occupied.

                  The generational blame game is pointless. No matter what anyone does, America will still suck.

            4. JTFaraday

              “The politics of divide and conquer are breaking down.”

              No it’s not. Not if you’re one of those so called leftists who are triggered at the sight of pink hats in a crowd

          3. Gary

            The people weren’t exactly given the whole truth and in fact were misled. That was the purpose of the “think tanks”. To convince the masses to vote against their own best interests and to subvert any progress the opposition might make. They did not play fairly. The nation did not divide itself.

          4. bayoustjohndavid

            I find your two comments about what “we” “boomers” bought into slightly ironic since you’re buying into the plutocracy’s divide and conquer tactic of trying to get us to focus on generational labels rather increasing income inequality.

            Will the rich really convince younger people in the bottom 80% to cut off their nose to spite their faces: “You may not want to hear this, but talking to millennials in my family and at school, I can tell you they already blame us – we aren’t going to get off scot-free for our behavior no matter how hard we “push back”.”

            If that means “entitlement reform” they’ll pay the price when privare debt replaces public debt. Hope I’m risking getting blocked by repeating myself, but once again, filial responsibility laws.

            As someone who realized in his forties, that he had become a boomer in his thirties, I find it hard to believe that so many people think our generational labels have any real meaning. Linking the sixties to current generational labels makes no since — half of the generation defined by the Vietnam War was too young to have been drafted. Defining boomers as the last generation to be better off than their parents shows a middle class/college educated bias. The Treaty of Detroit got ripped along time ago as far as the working class goes.

            I didn’t see this comment thread when I hurriedly made a comment further down this morning, but like I said then, Gibney’s examples of how the Boomers messed up everything don’t stand up to examination as a generational phenomenon.

        2. Dead Dog

          In Australia, boomers are blamed for the housing bubble and the young that can’t afford to rent or buy.

          The essence of the argument was that they were able to be educated for free, jobs were easier and they bought property when it was cheap, 3 to 4 times household income (that was probably just one person), AND then they bought investment properties and bid up all the prices so that millennials can’t get a foot in.

          Sniff, not a word about immigration, foreign buyers, neoliberalism…

          1. vidimi

            australia’s housing bubble is similar to canada’s or ireland’s. it is not justifiable on population density; it’s been financialised.

            1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

              Anyone not placing the blame squarely at the feet of central banks has not been paying attention, foreign buyers (like everyone) are desperate for yield. When money is free, um, uh, oh, look, it pays no current income. Could we possibly live in stupider times?

      2. sleepy

        And in our chase for those dollars, we stomped on unions and we stomped on those safety nets that were so important to us previously. We went to the polls and voted for people who would stomp on others (for our benefit, of course) without realizing that if someone is willing to stomp on other people, they are also willing to stomp on you……

        I was born in 1951. I didn’t do those things.

        1. Katharine

          Neither did Timothy Caughman, stabbed to death by a young man of privileged upbringing while picking through trash. It is beyond stupidity to generalize about an entire generation.

      3. justanotherprogressive

        Yea, I know. “It wasn’t me! It was all those other people.” That’s kind of the response I expected. But tell me, how much of that grab for wealth did you do? How did you measure yourself at the time? Did you not want the good life that you thought you saw everyone else having? Did you ever once think about where that was leading? When the goodies were being handed out, did you care that it wasn’t being handed out equally, but just to a few of you? Yes, I do understand that there were plenty of people fighting against neoliberalism at the time. But as an age cohort, Boomers WERE the group that let neoliberalism in the door, and we need to accept that. Did we as an age cohort understand what we were doing? Nah, we didn’t think about the future – today was enough.
        I’m not necessarily blaming anyone for actively creating this world, we just looked the other way at the time…..but is hard for Boomers as a cohort to now try to sell the story that they were “victims” and that all of this was just done to them.
        But the sad truth is, that if we cannot own up to our own collective behavior, what hope is there to fix this? Do we really have to let this run its course, wherever that takes us?

        1. katiebird

          “how much of that grab for wealth did you do?”

          Are you serious? Don’t you know that many, many of us were librarians, teachers, clerks, mechanics, and other regular workers — just trying to raise our families and get by?

          Grabbing for wealth? That’s something out of a movie or a novel…

          My friends and I worked for Democratic candidates at all levels through those years 1968 on (for me) … What good did it do? Our candidates not only lost but people like you spit on our efforts and call us greedy. Bah!!

          1. Fiery Hunt

            I think justanotherprogressive actually has a point…at least here in CA.

            Prop. 13 is the single biggest wealth grab there is and anyone who bought a house here since 1979 has played a huge part in not repealing this “I’ve got mine!” policy….

        2. different clue

          Those of you who grabbed for wealth are solely and totally at fault. Those of us who did not grab for wealth and don’t have any grabbed wealth are not the least bit at fault for what you and your fellow wealthgrabbers did.

          You filled your own toilet, not me. Don’t expect me to swim in it with you. Swim in it yourself.

        3. jrs

          how are you not looking the other way now? I mean in your political life, in your activism, in your trying to change the system. Tell us, that might actually be helpful.

          And if you aren’t an activist it doesn’t make you a bad person or anything, just makes you hypocritical for writing the above is all. You see you can’t blame the boomers for focusing on their own lives etc. rather than political questions if you mostly do the same! No voting for Sanders is fine but is really not enough, afterall many a Boomer voted a doomed candidate as well, it’s not like they all voted lockstep for Reagan etc..

    4. Katharine

      Bruce Cannon Gibney is described thus:

      Bruce Gibney is a partner at Founders Fund, with a focus on growth-stage investing. In addition to his investing duties, Bruce oversees the firm’s non-investment operations.

      Prior to his work at Founders Fund, Bruce managed a public equities portfolio and later served as General Counsel and Managing Director, Operations at Clarium Capital Management LLC, a global macro hedge fund. Bruce has also reviewed opportunities for Peter Thiel’s portfolio (including, with partner Ken Howery, the first investment in Facebook). After leaving Clarium, he was a consultant to financial firms and start-ups, including Founders Fund and several of its portfolio companies. He began his career as a securities litigator at Heller Ehrman. Bruce holds a BS in STS/IE from Stanford University (where he and his family made an early investment in Confinity, which became PayPal) and a JD from the University of California, Los Angeles, where he was a managing editor of the Law Review.


      which was the first source I found with any substance (don’t know why wiki page didn’t show up on first page of search). It gives no other details, but the picture shows a young guy. And he’s written a whole book on this fatuous theme.

      1. FriarTuck

        I find it amusing that in his book he acknowledges his own viewpoint preference as a libertarian several times, but the majority of policy prescriptions are “buckle down and restore the great society/new deal.”

        The cognitive dissonance is breathtaking.

    5. lyman alpha blob

      Although in the Trump era I have looked to some sources I thought I’d never visit (*cough* Fox News *cough*) to cut through all the Russia Russia Russia and get a different take on the news, having Douthat and Jacoby in the same set of links today was just too much to bear. No can do.

      Please don’t do that to us again ;)

  13. The Rev Kev

    “So will Cheney become a liberal icon now, like Bush?”
    Gaaaachhh!! Have people really forgotten over there that these men were responsible for the deaths of thousands on American soldiers?

    1. Colonel Smithers

      Thank you, Kev.

      The liberals will probably think that was a bonus (as most soldiers are deplorables in their world view).

      This is why I think Trump calling out NATO’s European freeloaders is great. So does my dad, a former Royal Air Force officer. Europeans are happy for (working class) Americans to do the(ir) dirty work and have the luxury of tut tutting from around the corner.

      1. sleepy

        I have always felt that much of the European political elite’s scorn for certain elements of an aggressive US foreign policy in the 80s and 90s was not real, only useful for domestic political purposes as rhetorical cover–“Well, the US is acting crazy again as we all know, but we have to understand they are a powerful ally and friend so we must go along”.

        That pretense was dropped awhile back, but now its cover has been completely blown with the European elite’s nervous reaction to Trump’s mild ambivalence towards Nato.

    2. Expat

      AS well as hundreds of thousands of Iraqis and Afghanis. Plus the giant clusterfuck in Syria, Iraq, Pakistan, and the Middle East.

    3. lyman alpha blob

      So was Cheney working with the Russians when he used Scooter to out CIA operatives?

      Just wondering since he and lil’ Georgie seem to be on some sort of reputation rehab tour of late.

  14. Expat

    Re: Le Pen. I’m French.
    Marine Le Pen is trying to change the face of the Front National from a racist, xenophobic fringe group into a mainstream Populist Front much the same way that Trump was able to co-opt the Republican party. But scratch an FN party member and you find the same old racists who founded the party. I find the French deeply racist as well as prickly about their role in anti-Arab and antisemitic activity.

    Ask a Frenchman about his grandfather and you will be assured that he was in the resistance from 1939 but not a communist. Ask him about Algeria and he will insist that the locals were French citizens with the same rights as the expats there. Ask them about French involvement in the Africa and you will get assurances that France never sends troops or helps autocratic regimes. Slums and inner cities (les banlieues) have all the same education and opportunities as whitebread France. Denial, denial, denial.

    I have an acquaintance who is an FN activist. When I questioned her on the democratic principles at stake when having three generations of Le Pen in political office, he laughed and said she was also Royalist so it made sense to her.

    Le Pen has a chance, though perhaps not this time around, if she moves the party in the directions she is taking. But an FN victory will simply validate the true, fundamental beliefs of the party and lead to overt racism and violence. The French fundamentally dislike Arabs and Jews.

    1. Colonel Smithers

      Thank you, Expat.

      You are right about the FN / Le Pen family firm, but one should not forget the more elegant, but no less racist, phrases expressed by Chirac, fake aristo Giscard (I know some of the descendants of the E in VGE), Catalan immigrant Valls, son of Hungarian and Salonika Toledano immigrants Sarko, and son of Jewish immigrants Cope.

      The Code Noir is rarely, if ever, mentioned in France. L’ancienne Isle de France, the land of my ancestors was a French colony from 1715 – 1810 (but I have ancestors from St Malo and Mercoeur (an arrondissement of Tulle, Correze). That law and the cultural attitudes it sparked, or was sparked by, have an impact to this day. It’s the same with France’s role in Haiti, a disgrace that continues to this day, but this time aiding and abetting the Clintons and their “racaille” NGO “collaborators”.

      Yesterday evening, I watched the France 2 news coverage of the general strike in Guyane. I know that schedules don’t permit a long investigation, but the colonial background was never mentioned.

      1. Colonel Smithers

        Thank you.

        According to the BBC’s royal correspondent, it’s the British royals, hence the French government will give the UK a good Brexit deal.

        I know, I know.

          1. Ulysses

            Ha! The world’s greatest unsolved mystery!

            “The Parisians outside the theater are happy to share their own enthusiasm for Lewis’s work. I introduce myself to one elderly, stylish woman—unabashedly gray hair, nicely coifed—and explain in my infantile French that Americans are fascinated and amused by the French passion for Lewis and would she be so kind as to explain why this passion persists. “Pourquoi?” she asks with a shrug. “Pourquoi?” The question lingers in the air, rhetorically, philosophically, as if the answer were both obvious and beyond words”


    2. David

      Well, it depends who you speak to, I suppose. The French are prickly and defensive on a whole series of issues, as other countries are, but if anything these days the political culture is apologetic, if not actually masochistic, about anything to do with ethnicity, religion or colonialism. The reluctance to tackle crime and Salafist fundamentalism in the poorer suburbs for fear of seeming racialist is now bearing fruit, and the mass media, the political class and school textbooks wallow in the evils committed by France in its colonies and done today to its immigrant population.
      Some of that is true, of course, but it’s not really the point. The fact is that, whilst there is an anti-capitalist discourse available in France, it’s limited to the fringes of the Left. But nobody, basically, especially the Left, is willing to talk about the practical problems caused by immigration, the difficulties of laicité, issues of borders and sovereignty or practical problems with European institutions and the Euro, on pain of being accused of “playing the game of the National Front”. But of course it’s precisely the failure of other parties to engage with these problems, or even admit their existence, that has given the FN a sniff at power, and it will be the fault of the established parties if Le Pen wins. It’s not that people think that she, or her politics are necessarily wonderful. But as happened in 2012, the election will be decided by whichever candidate gets the smallest negative vote.

      1. Colonel Smithers

        Thank you, David.

        You mention that no one is willing to talk about immigration. One wonders if it is made difficult to talk about immigration by some of the beneficiaries.

        My parents and I have a PME (SME) in l’ancienne Isle de France. The wife and daughter of one of the employees went to France (clandestines) a few years ago. We don’t know what skills they brought to France as they had none that we could think of when the pair helped out. Is it that they keep labour costs down.

        When in Paris, I often get groceries at the supermarket in Palais de Congres (Porte Maillot). I know some of the staff from many years back. Many are from anglophone former colonies like Pakistan and Sri Lanka, so France is not a “natural destination” for their language groups. I am sure that they work hard and are supporting many relatives overseas. I just wondered why no local would do the job. There are few, if any, locals in the shops there or nearby.

        1. vidimi

          when you guys talk about île de france, i presume you are talking about mauritius and not the paris region?

        2. Dead Dog

          Our locals want a living wage, Colonel, same as the French

          Those jobs, which are often paid out of the till, are always given to the cheapest labor

        3. David

          Some of it is certainly the search for a cheap and docile workforce, but it’s also in part because of the strength of the “anti-racist” lobby in the Socialist Party, which now consists of little else but identity politics groups of one kind or another. Harlem Désir, for example, who was General Secretary until he ran off to be a Brussels MEP, made his reputation with SOS-Racisme in the 1980s. When all you have is a series of hammers, every problem has to be presented as a series of nails.

      2. Tenar

        Re nobody on the French Left is willing to talk about “sovereignty or practical problems with European institutions and the Euro, on pain of being accused of ‘playing the game of the National Front'”

        Actually Frédéric Lordon, one of France’s foremost Leftist intellectuals, has been talking about about that exact issue for a while – he even published a book on it: La Malfaçon : monnaie européenne et souveraineté démocratique. Unfortunately, most of his work hasn’t been translated into English, but for the Francophones out there I encourage you to take a look at his writings/blog for Le Monde Diplomatique.

        1. vidimi

          jean-luc melonchon is also anti-euro for that reason. the socialist party, the french equivalent of the democrats, would never unite behind him, though, even though he currently enjoys greater support than their candidate, benoit hamon. even if there were a run-off election between le pen and melonchon, i doubt many Socialists would turn out to vote.

    3. Bugs Bunny

      Pretty much agree with this opinion. Lots of denial. I’ve heard some real doozies that I won’t repeat here. Antisemitism is rampant and stomach turning.

      Hard to believe that it wasn’t until Chirac (an underappreciated statesman, imho) that France officially accepted responsibility for Vichy regime crimes against Jews.

      Still, I live here and appreciate the quality of life and the solidarity of most of my fellow citizens.

      1. vidimi

        chirac was the great privatiser, putting a lot of great, french publicly-owned companies into oligarch hands. he cannot be forgiven for that.

        also, i live in paris which has a very large jewish population and most of the anti-semitism i have seen has been from opressed minorities. the official politick is very stongly anti-anti-semitic.

        that said, i am certainly not denying it exists. furthermore, i have no clue what goes on in the province, which is generally more traditional and catholic so it is likely worse there.

  15. RenoDino

    Trump signs four bills to roll back Obama-era regulations

    Regulations have the net effect of forcing companies to spend money on capital investment, wages and benefits that they would otherwise pocket and dole out as executive pay, dividends or share buybacks. It’s the only way government can force businesses to invest back into society.

    That’s why they are seen as so burdensome. It forces corporations to become responsible citizens, not just individuals who can buy elections.

    By reducing regulations, corporate spending and investment will decline and ultimately reduce GDP. In other words, just the opposite of what its supporters claim. On the other hand, the cost to society for reduced regulation will increase as standards are lowered.

    I’ve never heard a business person say, “I not going to invest in this highly profitable opportunity because the regulations are too burdensome.” In fact, regulations can create a barrier to entry that can make the opportunity even more profitable. However, reduced regulations will encourage more marginal operations where the chances of success will be less than normal.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      I think it depends on what regulations.

      If the regulation is that you can’t import drugs…

  16. Carolinian

    This may be a bit of pearl clutching by the normally level headed Justin Raimondo but still

    Because you can bet that Rep. Adam Schiff (D-California), the chief ringmaster of the House hearings on “Russian influence” in the election, is going to jump on this. And so we’re going to be treated to the spectacle of web site editors hauled up before his committee and harangued about their “Russian connections” – just like accused “Communists” were dragged before the House Un-American Activities Committee and interrogated, smeared, and threatened with prison time if they refused to answer questions.[…]

    Prof. Howard’s research tells us that “misinformation” (i.e. opinions Howard doesn’t agree with) is being spread via “computational propaganda,” and that this is a Bad Thing since it creates “distrust among voters.” And it isn’t just Trump-bots the Professor is “concerned” about: in the run up to the Brexit referendum (and guess which side he was on!) he warned that Brexit-bots were spreading similar “misinformation.” Howard and other concern-trolls from academia moan that these automated bots could “sway” elections – but, then again, so could other “automated” means of persuasion, say, Internet ads that pop up on your computer, or, indeed, any other form of “computational propaganda” that utilizes advanced technology (television ads) to make the case for a candidate or cause. What these people are edging toward, but don’t dare say openly, is that they advocate censorship of opinions they don’t like.

    In Yves’ Chicago meetup report she passes on the request that pictures with accidentally included participants not be uploaded to Facebook and given where the Dems are going with this that may be good advice. Will the new mantra of the Rep Schiff be “are you now or have you ever been a reader of Naked Capitalism?” It’s far fetched, but enough already with the leftie totalitarianism. If the Russians really did try to influence the election so what? They would have been acting no differently than our famously free press.

    1. voteforno6

      It could be bad, but then again, the Democrats don’t exactly recruit their members based on how well they do their jobs (unless you count raising money as being their job). Adam Schiff in particular doesn’t seem all that impressive – he’s fully taking advantage of his moment in the sun, but I would expect any half-decent witness hauled in front of his committee to run circles around him.

    2. Insertnamehere

      In some ways, the Russian craze has actually helped expand NC. I discovered NC due to that WaPo/PropOrNot Blacklist. The story reeked of an attempt at censorship. I just clicked on Blacklist links to see what WaPo was trying to marginalize. I doubt I’m the only person who found a home here in this way.

      That said, you are correct. There is a big difference in authority between WaPo and government. I will likely see the day when NC is gutted or illegal.

      1. Musicismath

        Yeah. Me too. I was a long time member and commenter at [liberal community weblog] and when that PropOrNot nonsense began to get bandied around there by the same credulous fools who’d spent all of 2015 and 2016 posting 6th-hand Kos and MoJo talking points about how Sanders voters were all racists and whatnot I looked through the list and thought “screw it, I’ll go there. That looks interesting.” And here I am.

      2. different clue

        If NC is “illegalized”, then the NC people will have to learn to communicate by tying little thumbdrives to the legs of carrier pigeons to catapult the samizdata and spread it around. NC members will have quiet undisclosed little computers and devices for copying memorysticks onto other memorysticks and so forth.

        And if the government outlaws carrier pigeons, then other animals will have to be found and trained.

    1. KurtisMayfield

      There have been peeps on tech and privacy websites, but yes the MSM has completely ignored it.

      I wrote my congress critter today, but I feel like its too late. I can only imagine the unintended consequences of putting up personal internet activity for sale. Jury selection, public service, credit reporting, job searches, etc. can be influenced. Yes I know that Google, Bookface, et. al. can do this already, but I can avoid using those services. I cannot avoid using an ISP. I have not read the bill, but the UK version also made it illegal to release an MP’s information; I would not be surprised if our Federal Representatives are shielded as well.

      I am going full VPN and Tor browser; it is no one’s business but the NSA’s if I want to watch peanut butter covered ducklings eating foie gras while engaging in obscene sexual acts with each other. First world governments are completely hostile to a person’s privacy. This is another piece of low-hanging fruit that a real opposition party could pick up on, if we had one in the US.

        1. grayslady

          Thanks for the link. That is one of the best articles I’ve seen on personal security. Too many of the articles I’ve read are either broad brush, with no specific resources listed, or else the recommendations are geared to users with super-high level tech skills.

        2. KurtisMayfield

          Thank you for the link!

          I already use Duckduckgo and almost all of those browser apps.. I will be stepping up and connecting via VPN all the time by doing it router side.

          1. Hubble

            I wouldn’t use duckduckgo if you care about your privacy, they used to set a tracking cookie al the while claiming that they didn’t. Maybe they were unaware, but I don’t trust them anymore either way. I’ve switched to last year and it’s getting better and better, they’ve added a lot of new features. It’s worth checking out!

    2. Vatch

      Make a phone call to your Representative. Here’s the information about the resolution:

      The companion resolution in the Senate was passed last week, and very briefly discussed here:

      Contact information for Representatives:

      It’s especially important to call the offices of Republican Representatives, so that they know that some people are paying attention. We need to let them know that we do not appreciate the arrogance behind this resolution.

  17. Linda

    Nevada Wolf. Interesting that they keep track of them and how they are able to do it.

    [Game Warden] Wakeling says wildlife officials recovered scat from the animal. A conservation lab at the University of Idaho confirmed the droppings were from a male offspring of a seven-member pack of wolves known as the “Shasta Pack” in Northern California.

  18. bayoustjohndavid

    The baby boomers article was on the top 10 trending list (on Boston Globe) for about a week earlier this month — further evidence that, if like an article, you should think a little, google a little, then think some more.

    I thought it was written by a Silicon Valley venture capitalist who wants to keep H-1B visas but cut Social Security & Medicare. I don’t have time to go through the many obvious criticismsthat occurred to me, but he blames problems that he says started in the 80’s on boomers because they became the majority of registered voters when the much older Reagan was president, but problems today are the boomers fault because Trump is a boomer. I guess VC’s can afford to eat one cake and buy another one too.

    A few of the obvious criticisms: Boomers are responsible for the repeal of Glass-Steagall & therefore the financial crisis. Google the name of the bill that repealed Glass-Steagall, then google the three names you get. How many of the three were born after 1946? Lying about Vietnam (or something) promoted a dishonest approach to life that led to Enron, Worldcom & climate change denial. The oil companies started funding climate change denial in the 80’s, were the all headed by CEOs who were barely 40? Enron & Worldcom were run by people born before 1946. Medicare expansion happened because the instant gratification me generation started looking ahead? How about because people who already retired (silents & great ones*) wanted it?

    I could go on but don’t have time. Hurried comment, didn’t check for spelling & typos. Seems obvious that a concerted effort to promote generational conflict because you can’t have increasing life expectancy, increasing income inequality & less government spending all at the same time. Shouldn’t we be talking about filial responsibility laws before entitlement reform passes?

    *A pandering book title really warped American perceptions.

    1. flora

      The Millenial generation is larger than the Boomer generation. Pretty soon I’ll be reading stories about how how the Millenials destroyed everything. ;)

      1. Altandmain

        You already have.

        There are plenty of articles about how our generation is lazy, entitled, “special snowflakes”, etc.

        In reality our generation is perhaps the most screwed since the ones that grew up in the Depression. Maybe more with global warming.

    2. Jeremy Grimm

      If you can get the crabs fighting you don’t need to worry about any climbing out of the bucket — or even trying.

  19. L

    Apropos of: Trump requests — and receives — this infrastructure list from builders union McClatchy

    It is interesting to note that, according to the article, many of the things on this list are both privately financed and are awaiting regulatory approval. Thus Trump can score “wins” on them by doing little to nothing and spending no money.

    If only such lists could have been obtained by an active eager white house before now.

  20. fresno dan

    A Massachusetts prosecutor told the state’s Supreme Judicial Court last week that D.A.’s would seek to keep fewer than 1,000 of the 24,000 convictions tainted by drug lab chemist Annie Dookahn, who pled guilty in 2012 to falsifying test results in favor of law enforcement and tampering with evidence over a nine-year period starting in 2003.

    That is some incredible productivity….That’s 7 cases a day, working every weekend, Christmas, New Years, Thanksgiving, 4th of July, and Groundhog’s day without one sick day. And NO ONE could figure it out…

    1. Alex Morfesis

      And in how many cases did she “falsify” the records to get a real mobster or drug kingpin off the streets…

      crickets ???

      Would like to know her family ties in trinny…

      sounds a bit much perhaps there is more here than a rogue govt bureaucrat…

    2. Rhondda

      Here’s an interesting backgrounder article.

      Seemed notable to me that she attended the same high school and college as Dzhokhar Tsarnaev. Only because he seems to have had IC “mentors” at both institutions.

      And the place where she claimed her mother was a doctor says not so:
      “A spokesperson for Mass General says that it has no record of employing a Samdaye Khan since 1990, the most recent period for which records are readily available.”

      And wowzers, the chummy relationships with prosecutors, as evidenced by cell phone and text records!

      I am with Alex. I think there’s more here than meets the eye.

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      Is Clizilla implying the Washington Post has financial problems? Or am I expecting too much?

  21. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    White House asks Russia to release anti-government protesters Chicago Tribune

    Is Trump being ungrateful to Putin? And isn’t there a more productive way – by hacking their jails? That’s how you interfere with their politics (not elections, though, just politics)

  22. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    For Trump Administration, ‘Extreme Vetting’ Has Wide Scope WSJ.

    The precedent is, I believe, the extreme vetting they have been practicing at dance club entrances, since the 70s.

    You have to conform to the accepted non-conformance ways and look pretty enough to get in.

  23. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    KING: Democrats should oppose Trump and Republican Party — but also present better ideas New York Daily News. But the Democrats are doing that: The Russian war scare is that better idea!

    The Democrats are like Xerxes’ army (numerical superiority is their faith, let’s let in more people we think will vote for us), and the Republicans, Alexander’s (more fanatical).

    That idea (numerical superiority) and the other idea, we are against whatever the Republicans are for, always reacting.

  24. allan

    Heritage releases its 2018 contract on America:

    Blueprint for Balance: A Federal Budget for Fiscal Year 2018

    Delusional fantasies Highlights include

    Slow the growth in spending, while fully funding national security needs;
    Cut taxes by more than $1 trillion over 10 years;
    Balance the budget within seven years;
    Reduce spending by $10.0 trillion and cut the deficit by $9.0 trillion over 10 years;
    Eliminate budget gimmicks and improve the budget process; and
    Eliminate programs that produce favoritism and limit opportunity.

    1. Jen

      “Eliminate programs that produce favoritism and limit opportunity.”

      But doesn’t that contradict the first 5 bullet points?

    2. Left in Wisconsin

      Apparently the Trump 2017 budget is taken almost word for word from the 2017 version. So why not double down for 2018? I think for 90-95% of what you will see from Trump (outside the 2-3 issues he cares about), it will be straight Heritage.

  25. cnchal

    > . . . contract on America

    Plus, make sure any ambulance that can take America to the hospital has four flat tires.

  26. m

    The Greenwich, CT article- Malloy & the Clinton types there, which are many, will never tax the well to do. Their excuse is that they are afraid they will leave the state, they already pay a huge amount in taxes now & blah, blah, blah.

  27. Jesper

    Maybe a rephrasing of one of the articles? Would an article with this title be more acceptable?

    When growing up and getting into adulthood the boomer generation had governments working for their benefit (the common good)

    Can the generations who came after say the same? In regards to access to housing, education, jobs etc

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      A government is peopled by people.

      Sometimes, you get many good people in the government; other times, you get many not so good people.

      It depends on your luck and/or you doing your civic duty.

      That’s a good reason why a government should not be able to spend as much as it wants.

      Beware of unintended consequences.

  28. Katniss Everdeen

    RE: Russiagate’s Unasked Questions Philip Giraldi, The American Conservative. Well worth a read.

    Definitely worth the read. Excellent compilation of what is actually known and not known so far about the Russki declaration of war on america.

    And, it seems to me, the article puts the current furious, confusing Nunes flap in perspective.

    Having failed to turn up evidence of Trump campaign collusion with the Russkis to destroy the republic despite months of trying, the dems risk a severe case of hysterical egg-on-the-face, to put it mildly. In a desperate bid to avoid that fate, they have decided on the next best course–to destroy the reputation of the house intelligence committee and its chairman preemptively, thereby discrediting any unwelcome or unwanted conclusions they may come to.

    This frenzy is insane. The stakes must be higher than any of us can possibly imagine.

    1. Oregoncharles

      The panic runs deep, and they keep digging the hole deeper.

      Oh well – picking up the pieces should be fun.

    2. Rhondda

      This frenzy is insane. The stakes must be higher than any of us can possibly imagine.

      I think much of it may be that people who fancied themselves untouchable, beyond the law, may be realizing otherwise.

      Remember, after the Matt Lauer-moderated debate, where Lauer went off the approved questions sent to him by Donna Brazile, Hillary reportedly screeched “If that f*ing bastard wins, we all hang from nooses!” That was moments before she called Brazile a “buffalo” and threw a glass of water at her.

  29. Oregoncharles

    ” Hmm. Do we have any French readers who can give insight here? Does this make LePen more likely to win?”

    Not French, but it seems unlikely. That’s the .01% she’s talking with. What’s far more likely to make a difference are her genuinely populist economic positions. That combination of left and right wing might be deadly, and might also make the polling very unreliable.

  30. Left in Wisconsin

    How Pedestrians Will Defeat Autonomous Vehicles Scientific American.

    Rings true. Thus, this is the outcome I find most likely:

    In the regulatory response outcome, pedestrians will still think twice about crossing the street, but instead of focusing on the risk of being hit by a car, being hit with a potential traffic ticket will come to mind. Attempts to reign in pedestrians could come through a combination of new regulations and infrastructure designed to keep people and cars separated. Planning focused on shared spaces for cars and people will decline and fences and road barriers will increase. Liability for pedestrian-car accidents would primarily fall on the (now) law-breaking pedestrians, and not car manufacturers, further constraining their behavior.

    Unless they decide to outlaw walking in cities entirely. Why walk when you can Uber?

    1. polecat

      Just think of all the cool new contact sports having to be invented .

      “Hey Bro …. lets get the posse together, and go for a ‘lyft’ …”

  31. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    No Need For Basic Income….Henning Meyer.

    It reads as if he goes over the Basic Income idea with a fine-tooth comb, and then he suggests things that are fuzzy looking, hand-waving-y.

    For example, cornerstone #1: First, education systems clearly need to adapt more to new economic realities than they have so far.

    Right there, my mind starts to wander off…would be nice to have Basic Income. You know, that kind of daydreaming.

    1. nihil obstet

      Yes, the idea that “education will make everyone successful at getting a good job” has been our main response to economic dislocations for 30 years. It hasn’t worked yet, but by golly, it will work going forward!

      I wonder if the fact that most writers on the subject did not grow up in a world where middle class women and children did not routinely submit to paid employment influences their belief that failure of such submission creates psychological disfunction. At least the article was a little short on the usual Downton Abbey fantasies (all the happy peasants will be put to work caring for our elderly and children and keeping up the grounds), though as usual it doesn’t really have a good vision of what else said peasants might do.

  32. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Protesters target Connecticut’s uber wealthy with ‘tax bills’ in bid to end loophole Guardian (Bob K


    Can you fund a state government by taxing the billionaires alone?

    If that works, I think even many (I don’t say all) Republicans will join the cause.

  33. witters

    This: “Meanwhile, holes are beginning to appear in the claim that the Russians were behind the DNC hacking. The FBI was not allowed to examine the Democratic party servers that were allegedly targeted and the reports on accountability came from a contract security company called CrowdStrike, which claimed that the malware used against the DNC was related to malware employed by the Russians in Ukraine. The Ukrainian government, no friend to Russia, as well as a highly reputable British think tank, are now claiming that the allegation is untrue, as is the narrative built around it. Take away the CrowdStrike report and there is no publicly available evidence whatsoever that the Russians were behind the hacking. This is not to say they didn’t do it, but it is yet another indication that verification of claims is lacking.”

    Then this: “I personally believe, based on what I have observed and read … that the Russians were indeed behind the DNC hack…”

    Putin Derangement Syndrome goes deep. There is no evidence – but this lack of evidence is merely a metter of ‘holes beginning to appear in the claim….” (A hole in a claim??? A claim can be true or false. Where do holes come in?)

  34. gepay

    On the disappearing beaches article : Did anyone notice “Historically, there’s been more accretion (or growth) in the size of the region’s beaches, yet the trend is expected to reverse, researchers said.” The facts are strong storms erode some beaches and there were strong storms in the last two El Ninos. But accretion must be still happening for the trend to be “expected” to reverse. Then one can read the pdf “Many different paradigms of coastal evolution models exist to simulate behavior of certain processes and scales.
    Studies of coastal hazards and shoreline change due to extreme events often rely on detailed, computationally -onerous physics – based numerical modeling efforts
    (e.g., van Dongeren et al. 2009, Barnard et al. 2014) to resolve the hydrodynamic forcing and
    morphologic response.
    On the other hand, simplified process – based or empirical models (detailed below) are often applied to predict chronic shoreline change. All models, however, inevitably rely upon approximations of
    complex, multiscale systems, and thus are subject to many sources of error (Pape et al., 2010).
    So based upon models that have many areas of uncertainty (but as stated in the pdf are called for by planners) that use estimates of climate change derived from more models with their uncertainties we might have southern California beaches erode in the future.

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