Links 9/4/17

Grizzly bears go vegetarian due to climate change, choosing berries over salmon Telegraph (original).

Doubts raised about CRISPR gene-editing study in human embryos Nature

The company that makes Jack Daniel’s is skirting accounting rules, experts say Francine McKenna, MarketWatch

98.5 Percent Of Original Comments To The FCC Oppose Killing Net Neutrality Above The Law

Global growth still at record rates for this expansion FT

North Korea

The Peanut – North Korea Tests A New Nuke – Continues To Press For Negotiations Moon of Alabama

What Motivations Lie Behind North Korea’s Nuclear Arsenal NYT. The front page headline: “Nuclear Arsenal Is No Longer Thought to Be Only Defensive.” Hoo boy. (The URL, “north-korea-kim-jong-un,” matches neither, suggesting some internal editorial struggle.)

The Quite Rational Basis for North Korea’s Japan Overfly Defense One

Mattis Warns U.S. Could Bring ‘Total Annihilation’ to North Korea Roll Call

Why Kim Jong Un Isn’t Afraid of Donald Trump Politico

Three Dangerous Delusions about Korea Strategic Culture

China and Russia unite against North Korean nuclear test South China Morning Post


5 Things to Watch Out for at the Chinese Communist Party Congress The Diplomat

China tightens restrictions on dissent, porn and gambling online Asian Correspondent


I left because there was no offer on the table from the govt: Raghuram Rajan Times of India (J-LS). Excellent article on demonetization (despite the headline).

India PM Narendra Modi shakes up his top team FT. “Reshuffle comes amid outcry over disappointing data on banknote ban.”


Pakistan: A slice of China in Islamabad Al Jazeera

The great Saudi sell-off: why bankers and lawyers are flocking to the Gulf Guardian (Re Silc).

The U.S. Is in Denial About the Civilians It’s Killing in Syria Foreign Policy

Syria may be in ruins, but it looks like Assad ‘has won the war militarily’ Los Angeles Times


Brexit: UK to be ‘educated’ about consequences, says Barnier BBC

Mark Thompson: ‘A second Brexit referendum risks seeming like a stab in the back by the elite’ Guardian

It’s Back to Work (and Brexit) for Britain’s Parliament Bloomberg

Merkel survives challenger’s onslaught to win election TV debate Reuters

Merkel: ‘Turkey should not become an EU member’ FT

How Angela Merkel speaks The Economist

‘I’ve Never Seen So Much Hate’ Der Speigel

Hurricane Harvey

This 1,000-year-old oak tree survived Hurricane Harvey Popular Science (Re Silc).

Hurricane Harvey Destroys Up to a Million Cars in Driving-Dependent Houston WIRED (Re Silc).

Texas faces environmental concerns as wastewater, drinking water systems compromised WaPo

There’s nothing ‘natural’ about a natural disaster Red Pepper

Imperial Collapse Watch

Navy destroyer collides with building in downtown Houston Duffel Blog

Make no mistake, the latest US thuggery is a sign of weakness, not strength The Saker (MT). An important bill of particulars.

New Cold War

Russia: U.S. closure of diplomatic sites a ‘blatantly hostile act’ Reuters

On the Lawfare over the Steele Dossier emptywheel

Trump Transition

The Relevance of Franz L. Neumann’s Critical Theory in 2017: Anxiety and Politics in the New Age of Authoritarian Capitalism Journal for a Global Sustainable Information Society

* * *

Op-Ed If you listen closely, you can hear Trump’s tax plan shrinking Los Angeles Times

Trump has decided to end DACA, with 6-month delay Politico

Trump Quietly Nominates Mass Surveillance Advocate To “Protect” Your Privacy Rights AntiMedia

Exclusive: Read the Inauguration Day letter Obama left for Trump CNN. Prepare three envelopes

In Berkeley, Attacks by Antifa Turn ‘Alt-Right’ Trolls into Fox News Heroes The Intercept (ChiGal).

The Homecoming WaPo. (Lyrics to “Stealing Cinderella.”).

Democrats in Disarray

Long List of Top Democrats Have 2020, and Money, on Their Minds NYT

Kamala Harris and Kirsten Gillibrand will lead Democrats to 2020 victory The Hill

So spontaneous:

Hillary Clinton endorsed a startup — and then it fell victim to a cyber attack Recode. I blame Putin. Or Bernie Bros.

Monopoly Power

It’s Google’s birthday — here’s how it looked 19 years ago The Next Web. Deflects attention to the Google search box, as opposed to Google’s gaming and manipulation of the results page.

Deep Learning Research Directions: Computational Efficiency Tim Dettmers

To save rural Iowa, we must oppose Monsanto-Bayer merger Des Moines Register

How fair is our food? Big companies take reins on sourcing schemes Reuters (DK).

LePage calls for emergency legislative session after feds balk at Maine food sovereignty law Bangor Daily News. Agreed by both parties (!).

Guillotine Watch

European Castles: Easier to Buy Than You Might Think WSJ

Is Now the Time to Buy a Dam for Your House? Bloomberg

Class Warfare

America needs its unions more than ever Larry Summers, FT (!).

A New Bill of Rights for Workers: 10 Demands the Labor Movement Can Fight for and Win In These Times (MT).

After Nissan: Can We Organize the South? Labor Notes

Fighting the Klan in Reagan’s America Jacobin

To Understand Rising Inequality, Consider the Janitors at Two Top Companies, Then and Now NYT

The Side Hustle Economy: 25 Ways to Make Extra Dough Visual Capitalist. Sounds rather like the Third World’s System D.

Disturbed sleep patterns may be key to ADHD, study finds Guardian

Why I miss antenna TV The Week

The Looming Decline of the Public Research University Washington Monthly

Antidote du jour (via):

Miyoko Ihara’s grandmother and her cat, Fukumaru.

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.