Links 8/10/18

Dear readers, Yves apologizes for the short rations of original posts and asks your forgiveness: She’s not feeling so hot.  –Jerri-Lynn

‘Drunk And Irritable’ Wasps Are Rampaging Through Britain, Experts Say KPIX5 CBS San Francisco. No, not The Onion.

Diners discover rare blue lobster at Maine restaurant, insist he be set free Bangor Daily News (The Rev Kev)

Stranger Places Nautilus. Birders, don’t miss this: In search of the yellow-billed cuckoo.

Pot for pets: U.S. federal law puts vets into a quandary Reuters. e mayer: “At least for hippie kitties, the solution would seem to be for the human waitstaff person – you know, the one often under the delusion of being the cat’s owner – get a med-pot Rx and then mix that in with a bit of catnip. or better, just grow a bit of both! Not sure if cats will eat mj leaves on their own, but one can always mix a bit of both into a little scrap ragclotth, tie it shut an let Teh poor widdle glaucoma-suffering Kitteh go to town on it.”

Burn, Baby, Burn

California wildfires: Eight images that reveal scale of devastation BBC

Aggressive wildfire threatens thousands of homes in southern California city Reuters

NATIVE TRIBES ARE TAKING FIRE CONTROL INTO THEIR OWN HANDS Wired

Down With the Philosophy Factory Jacobin

Soon, the most beautiful people in the world may no longer be human WaPo

Waste Watch

Banning Single-Use Plastics: Can Armenia Take Out the Trash for Good? Armenian Weekly

Designing the Death of a Plastic NYT David L.

The poop of 100K cows may be to blame for that deadly romaine E. coli outbreak Ars Technica

Court orders ban of top-selling pesticide, says EPA violated law, ignored scientific studies Chicago Tribune (AF)

On the anniversary of the end of the First World War, even photographs cannot speak of our true history  Independent. Robert Fisk

Crisis Retrospective

Barney Frank on His Regrets From the Great Recession New York magazine. UserFriendly: “In case you needed another reason to hate barney frank.”

This Broker Fought the Flash Boys and Got in Trouble for It Bloomberg (David L)

Turkey

ECB concerns grow over EU banks’ Turkey exposure as lira slides FT

Fake News

I Was Banned for Life From Twitter American Conservative (The Rev Kev)

Kill Me Now

As 2020 Talk Continues, Kamala Harris Is Set To Headline Martha’s Vineyard Reception BuzzFeed

Syraqistan

U.S. ‘Fine Tuning’ Of Saudi Airstrike Target List Creates Results Moon of Alabama

Yemen: Dozens of civilians killed in school bus attack Al Jazeera

The Pentagon doesn’t know if US-made bombs killed kids in Yemen Vox. Uh huh. Totally. I believe that.

Gunz

A redaction fail (and contempt?) for the Sun Sentinel Columbia Journalism Review

Russia to retaliate if Washington bans Aeroflot flights to US RT (The Rev Kev)

What Dirt Does Russia Have on Barack Obama? American Conservative. This made me chuckle.

Russia threatens to ban sale of key rocket engines to US as row over ‘obnoxious’ sanctions intensifies The Telegraph (The Rev Kev)

Brexit

Brexit: recycling a bad idea EUReferendum.com

CBI urges government to drop ‘blunt target’ on immigration numbers Guardian

Trump Transition

Trump’s star on the Walk of Fame to be permanently removed after West Hollywood council vote Independent. I’m no Trump fan, but this strikes me as petty and stupid.

Pence announces first steps in establishing ‘Space Force’ The Hill

‘A Nonsense Idea’: Retired 4-Star Army General Explains Why Trump’s Space Force Is Ludicrous — and Probably Doomed to Fail AlterNet

The challenge of tagging Republicans as ‘corrupt’ in 2018 Politico

Class Warfare

Flood Thy Neighbor: Who Stays Dry and Who Decides? ProPublica

‘Anti-Union Forces Awoke a Sleeping Giant’: Voters Overturn a New Anti-Union Law Governing

Apple’s CEO Tim Cook— Serf Labor, Overpriced iPhones, and Wasted Burning Profits Counterpunch. Ralph Nader.

Some thoughts after reading “Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup” Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science. Andrew Gelman.

Coroner sent letters to doctors whose patients died of opioid overdoses. Doctors’ habits quickly changed LA Times (The Rev Kev)

BATTLE OVER OPIOIDS: SURPRISING PUSH-BACK, AND NOT FROM DEALERS WhoWhatWhy.org

Location as an Asset  Minneapolis Fed. UserFriendly: “I have no intention of reading more than the abstract of this because it made me want to barf. All the smarty smart rich people obviously want to move to expensive areas and the people who don’t stay poor because they don’t move.”

‘We are throwaways.’ LA Times

West Virginia Impeaches Entire State Supreme Court, Will Return To Trial By Combat During Changeover, Probably Above the Law. The deck: Joking aside, impeaching all of these judges seems to be the right move.

THE KOCH BROTHERS COMMISSIONED A SURVEY OF AMERICANS AND FOUND MOST LIKE A $15 MINIMUM WAGE, FREE COLLEGE, AND UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE The Intercept. This shouldn’t be news to anybody. Tom Ferguson’s been writing about this issue for years– the disjunction between what voters say they want and what they get. See his Right Turn (co-authored with Joel Rogers, 1987). Still available and well worth getting hold of a copy.

India

As Delhi HC Decriminalises Begging, the Centre Must Address the Root Causes The Wire

Ikea unpacks first store in India after 12-year struggle FT

A tribe in India just sent us this letter about tigers Treehugger

Antidote du jour.

And a bonus yellow-billed cuckoo video:

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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211 comments

  1. Samuel Conner

    Silly thought that may induce a few chuckles: contemplating today’s antidote, the thought occurred to me that if I were a female bird, I would much prefer to give birth to an egg than to THAT thing!

    Reply
    1. kgw

      You are referring to the rail in the first anti-dote, I suspect! I was walking at a coastal lagoon earlier this morning, the tide was out, and similar birds were walking in the muck looking for breakfast…

      Reply
    2. Malcolm MacLeod, MD

      Samuel: But that is exactly how life works; for us as well as our animal friends.
      Nature is prodigal, and at times, efficient.

      Reply
  2. emorej a hong kong

    As 2020 Talk Continues, Kamala Harris Is Set To Headline Martha’s Vineyard Reception

    Since Harris is by-far the most logical Anybody-But-Bernie candidate (because identity politics and “tough prosecutor” is all they have, other than fabrications stretching even today’s low standards of plausibility)

    … each Harris branding-misstep is welcome. She was smart enough to keep her AIPAC talk off-the-record, but not smart enough to know that Martha Vineyard is nearly as emblematic of elite obliviousness as “Secret Speeches to Wall Street”.

    If she was really smart, she would stay lower profile, because Biden will never fit this role, Booker has already disqualified himself, Gillibrand’s reputation will be lucky to survive the present uprising in New York, and Warren’s fire in the belly is unlikely to make it to, much less past, the New Hampshire primary.

    Reply
    1. ambrit

      What gets me about the Harris ‘phenomenon’ is that this is the best the Democrat Party can come up with? If so, then the Democrat Party is bankrupt.
      I foresee a three way campaign in 2020. The Republican Party versus the Democratic Whig Party faction versus the Democratic ‘Socialist’ Party faction.

      Reply
      1. emorej a hong kong

        I too foresee a 3-way (besides Libertarian & Green) general election campaign :
        (assuming the Dem establishment doesn’t quadruple down on transparent vote-tampering and “kill the Party in order to save it”, and thereby steal the nomination from Bernie)
        most of the Dem establishment likely to support (with various degrees of openness) an Independent Presidential candidate.

        Steyer now looks much better positioned for this role than the Wall Street-tainted Bloomberg, or maybe so much support will be forthcoming that the usual self-funding requirement can be waived. There may be so many wannabees that the top 5 or 10 need to have their own convention to sort out the selection.

        Less predictable is the Independent Veep position. Conventional logic about ticket-balancing would say:
        1. John Kasich
        2. Condoleeza Rice
        3. Susana Martinez

        Reply
      2. Jack Lifton

        Whether that division is explicit or implicit that is exactly what the theme of the 2020 election will be for the Democrat Party..

        Reply
        1. Julia Versau

          RE the Buzzfeed Kamala Harris story: Read that last paragraph (below). Democrats think we want to “make history.” More identity politics bullshit. What people want is Medicare for All, higher wages, less corruption, less war. With ideas like the one below, the Democrats will guarantee a second Trump term as president.

          If there’s something I can be assured will piss me off every single day, it is the never-ending self-serving idiocy of the corporate Dem elite crew.

          From the story:
          Jarrod Loadholt, a Democratic strategist, said that many voters and donors see someone who can beat Trump — but they’re also interested in something more. “It’s hard not to look at her and not see the history you can make,” he said. “That alone will be very attractive to a lot of people.”

          Reply
          1. Livius Drusus

            The thing I fear is that a lot of partisan Democrats are obsessed with identity politics and these are the people who vote in the primaries. It is the same reason why Trump is almost guaranteed to defeat any primary challenger in 2020. The hardcore base of the GOP loves him even if a lot of moderate Republicans and Republican-leaning independents might not like him.

            Primary voters are different from general election voters. They are more ideological and in the case of the Democrats there is a strong neoliberal-identity politics wing along with the more left-wing “Berniecrat” wing. The Dems are less homogeneous than the Republicans. Outside of the Religious Right there is no identity politics faction in the GOP since that party is predominately white.

            In the case of the Democrats I expect the 2020 primary to be very brutal and vicious. The bad blood from 2016 won’t be gone and will return with a vengeance. Expect the meme of the supposedly evil Bernie Bros to make a comeback as Bernie or anyone close to him will be painted as a secret racist or misogynist. I expect that Bernie’s statements against open borders (he called it a Koch brothers idea) will be used to attack him as being in league with Trump and to try to turn Hispanics against Bernie.

            I am mentioning all of this not to put a damper on hopes for Bernie in 2020 or for someone similar to him, I am just saying that folks on the left will have to be prepared for all of these arguments and tactics which will almost certainly be used by the neoliberal wing of the Democratic Party in 2020.

            Reply
            1. JohnnyGL

              “The thing I fear is that a lot of partisan Democrats are obsessed with identity politics and these are the people who vote in the primaries.” — Actually, they’ve suddenly started getting a lot quieter about it once various upstart candidates started going after their beloved party icons like Cuomo, Crowley, Lacey Clay and Stenny Hoyer.

              https://theintercept.com/2018/06/12/the-democratic-partys-2018-view-of-identity-politics-is-confusing-and-thus-appears-cynical-and-opportunistic/

              Reply
            2. JohnnyGL

              “In the case of the Democrats I expect the 2020 primary to be very brutal and vicious. The bad blood from 2016 won’t be gone and will return with a vengeance.”

              Actually, I’d bet it’ll be much more collegial. The Clintons always play nasty. Nasty enough to intimidate Biden and Warren from running against them. Having the Clintons out of the way will lighten everyone’s mood. Unless….the unthinkable happens…

              Reply
              1. Carey

                I just can’t see that, because the Corporate Dems can no
                longer win anything like a fair fight. We’ll see, I guess,
                including if She makes Herself available to serve™…

                Reply
              2. Big River Bandido

                Even if someone named Clinton isn’t running…nearly all the establishment figures in the so-called “party” are mere proxies for them and the same neoliberal crap ideology.

                Reply
          2. NotTimothyGeithner

            Another consequence of wealth inequality. What appeals to elites of a dying party doesn’t make sense to bulk of the electorate.

            Reply
            1. Brindle

              There was not one mention of policy in the article. These Martha’s Vineyard folk are set for life and don’t have a concern about paying for health care or college tuition. The Dem primaries will likely re-create 2016 with the Centrists stonewalling the Progressive wing of the party.

              Reply
          3. Carla

            “If there’s something I can be assured will piss me off every single day, it is the never-ending self-serving idiocy of the corporate Dem elite crew.”

            Hear! Hear! You’ve got company in this quarter. Never-ending. Self-serving. Idiocy. Best description of elite corporate Dems evah.

            BTW, here’s the latest idiotic quote from My Senator Sherrod Brown (savior of “the left,” dontcha know?):

            “Republicans want to take away consumer protections – that is the fight for me,” Brown said when asked about the [single-payer] issue during a recent conference call. “I don’t get into what’s next. Medicare for All is a question for another day.”

            Can we all vomit in unison now?

            Reply
          4. Roger Smith

            Hah! Clueless fools. The Historical aspect was one of the main reasons that I voted against Clinton (many of the issues that make her unelectable fit under this heading). Why in the heck would I want some corrupt, crony, war-mongering, murdering, narcissistic psychopath to be immortalized in the history books for simply having two X chromosomes (and in place of all the aforementioned traits she should be immortalized alongside)?

            Do these Democrat talking heads have to wear masks to maintain their faux-ear to ear grinning excitement?

            Reply
            1. False Solace

              A woman getting elected to office in large part because she’s someone’s wife or daughter is very banana republic. Third World USA!

              (I have 2 X chromosomes myself…)

              Reply
          5. Katniss Everdeen

            The only “history” I’m interested in making is the eradication, once and for all, of for-profit, rationed “healthcare” in the u.s. and its replacement with a single-payer, national, everybody-in-nobody-out system, and if it takes an old, lily white, unreligious, heterosexual, socialist white male to make it happen, so be it.

            Reply
          6. Shane Mage

            You all really need to understand that *all* of them (except the pathetic Biden) are running for the VP nomination with Sanders. So they all have to run just-far-enough-to the-“right”-of-him to “balance” the ticket. It’d all be for show, folks.

            Reply
            1. ambrit

              I think you are underestimating the sheer ruthless will to power of Hillary Clinton. She will be perfectly satisfied with bringing the Democrat Party, indeed, the entire United States down in fire and blood if she does not get ‘her due.’
              I foresee the Clinton Cabal obviously rigging the Democrat Party primaries against Sanders. Then, all the Veep wannabes will have a very hard choice to make; do they fall in behind Sanders or Clinton? That’s when I predict the Democrat Party will founder.
              I am in agreement with the above commenters who opine that we will see a second Trump administration.

              Reply
              1. Mark Pontin

                Ambrit wrote: I foresee the Clinton Cabal obviously rigging the Democrat Party primaries against Sanders.

                Agreed. She’s out there now comparing herself to Winston Churchill in the interwar years.

                In 2016, she effectively bought up much of the ground-level Democrat party machinery with Clinton Foundation money behind the scenes, as Donna Brazile and others revealed, and she presumably retains ownership of those structures now.

                So I’m not a betting man, but — short of health issues or the rest of the Democrats somehow coming together to stop her — it’s a safe bet she’ll try to stuff herself down America’s throat again in 2020. Thence, one way or another that’ll move the party, as currently configured, much nearer to going the way of the Whigs in the 19th century.

                One is tempted to say: Go Hillary. But what comes after could be worse as well as better.

                Reply
              2. False Solace

                I also see this as a pretty big possibility. HRC just won’t go away.

                2020 will be like 2016 but with fewer savory leaks to lighten the sludgery. Better cybersecurity + they’re gonna take out Assange + big media will shut down dissenting voices that attract too big an audience.

                Reply
                1. Procopius

                  I don’t think taking Assange out is going to have much real effect. He’s not the only person who runs Wikileaks although I myself don’t recall the names of any of the others. They are dedicated to the goal of providing a safe channel for whistleblowers to expose criminality and corruption. I think Assange is providing a useful distraction while they continue with their mission.

                  Reply
          7. Big River Bandido

            never-ending self-serving idiocy of the corporate Dem elite crew.

            Just a correction. They are not idiots. They are doing exactly as they intend to do (i.e., be the political equivalent of the Washington Generals). The stupidity is just acting.

            Reply
      3. NotTimothyGeithner

        Is Harris the best? Basically.

        It was funny, but the most important thing about the Donna Brazille book was her observation that the staff at the HRC headquarters wasn’t having sex. The pictures of the HRC main office looked like a College Republican meeting.

        There are consequences to a party which has embraced the idea of “centrism” or the idea of sacrificing a liberal position such as guns or abortion (once all the rage among 3rd way types) to win a subset of perceived single issue voters. They aren’t a creative lot. Its an inherently conservative lot which means the Democrats will only have their version of cookie cutter Republicans. Who does it attract?

        The Democratic Party once had people like LBJ and JFK, personalities but with substance who brought something to the table, naturally different people. Adlai was exciting by today’s standards. Father Drinan. Shirley Chisolm. With the movement to centrism, dullness took over, and the Democratic Party elite and their offspring are just a bunch of tools. Now we see certain selected jobs and schools masquerading as policy ideas for the Democratic Party.

        https://twitter.com/Ocasio2018/status/1027729430137827328

        Could you imagine the kind of candidate the DNC supports saying anything remotely as cool as this?

        Reply
          1. Pat

            Nor ironic, not intended, but that sticky note feature for Hillary For Right Arrow has one that note that to me says oodles about the campaign’s unintended moments of letting the rubes in on the real intentions. Many times Hillary or one of her surrogates would say something in the campaign so clearly against the will of the majority of the people or about policies which would make things worse for significant portions of the electorate without even realizing that a whole lot of the people listening got what was going to happen.

            While the sticky note in the picture could say ‘defending Obamacare’ the hand writing is so bad you could also read it as ‘defunding Obamacare’. I know that goes against all Clinton supposedly stands for, but not really. As the for profit Medical costs and insurance premiums grew, anything but massive increases for the Medicaid expansion and the subsidies would essentially be defunding Obamacare without overtly doing it. They could defend it AND defund it all at the same time.

            Reply
        1. JohnnyGL

          “https://twitter.com/Ocasio2018/status/1027729430137827328

          Could you imagine the kind of candidate the DNC supports saying anything remotely as cool as this?”

          That’s great. I haven’t seen much Ben Shapiro, so can’t say if he’s sharp on his feet or not. But, really, AOC doesn’t have anything to gain by debating anyone, really, other than possibly raising her profile (which the media have already done plenty of, since they’ve been caught out and stuck playing catch up).

          I can only imagine how watered down a tweet response from HRC’s team would have been.

          Reply
          1. Plenue

            Shapiro’s gimmick is to make a fraudulent assertion and then rapidfire a construct on top of that flawed foundation. As long as he keeps machinegunning out words, no one has time to consider how full of crap his core argument is.

            I’ve never seen him debate an actual leftist before, just weaksauce liberals. If his opponent resolves to not let him play has standard game, he could be brought to a complete halt.

            Reply
          2. Elizabeth Burton

            What’s amazing is how fast the establishment swooped in to condemn her response, which given the situation is exactly how I would describe it. First, the ethics of a “journalist” offering to pay a candidate are questionable. If he wants to discuss things, what’s wrong with just asking for an interview?

            Second, that we are now placing “journalists” in a position of having right to debate a candidate, as many, many of those responding apparently do, is a telling symptom of how deeply embedded the idea that media should have the power to dictate how our elections are handled has become in some quarters.

            Reply
      4. Carey

        What exactly has Harris *done*, other than not prosecute Mnunchin?

        Nothing, so perfect Demorat candidate, I suppose. Paid to lose™.

        Reply
        1. JohnnyGL

          Donors love a blank slate/empty vessel…..they can mould her into their own perfect, centrist creation that only a donor (and no one else) can appreciate!

          Reply
        2. Procopius

          She refused to investigate the Orange County DA and his prosecutors for blatant misconduct and suborning perjury while she was California Attorney General. There was plenty of evidence that they were using jailhouse snitches and inappropriately rewarding them with reduced sentences and privileges in prison. It wasn’t that long ago, and I’m sure lots of people remember it. It was perceived as refusing to stop prosecutorial abuse and corruption, and I have no doubt there is plenty of oppo material from that nonfeasance alone. There were other things while she was AG that were dodgy, but I would have to do some research to remember them. The thing is lots of people in California have bad memories of her performance and political ambition.

          Reply
      5. Jean

        Ambrit,

        As a yardstick of her “popularity” I encourage you to read the comment section discussing her viability as a candidate in the most liberal of all newspapers, the San Francisco Chronicle.

        This is where she began her career in politics under the uber status quo speaker of the California state assembly. She has a track record in San Francisco.

        It’s about 9 to 1 against her through hundreds of comments. You can check the tenure and tone of the commenters on the comment line, lest you think they are Russians or Trump voters in the Midwest.

        Whatever attractive qualities she has locally, mostly based on her selection of parents, will be anathema to the majority of American voters, to and including progressive Democrats.

        https://www.sfgate.com/politics/article/Kamala-Harris-2020-Democratic-primary-betting-odds-13142323.php

        The Trump campaign is praying that the Democrats will nominate her. That way he won’t even need to campaign. The New Democratic Party: Making Trump look good, one horrible candidate after another.

        Reply
        1. Carey

          I tried on three browsers to look at the comments, but could only see
          the article proper. Sometimes I think my ISP is…

          Reply
          1. HotFlash

            Worked for me, but took some doing. First, you have to scroll down past all the ads and clickbait, then you should see a red box that says See Comments. Click on that and wait a looooong time. A few should appear, last one on the page is an option to Load More Comments. Rinse, repeat.

            Reply
      6. Elizabeth Burton

        Don’t discount the blind obedience of Clinton cultists to the dictates of their Fearless Leaders. When I had the temerity to criticize Harris to someone all starry-eyed over the list of potentials for 2020, I was informed she did a tremendous job on behalf of homeowners during the foreclosure crisis.

        Gaslighting is what the corporate media do best.

        Reply
    2. gordon

      As I have in the past, I am prepared to offer myself as a podesta President of the US. See here for what a podesta was in medieval Italy:
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Podest%C3%A0
      My requirements are, first, that I can work from home (I live in Australia), second, that the US pays off my son’s mortgage, and third, that the US pays any work-related expenses (like if I have to buy an expensive lunch or dinner for some US visitor that I can’t find a way to avoid).

      In return I will give the US an honest President who will (a) make peace, (b) reduce the military expenditure, (c) forget about going to Mars, (d) ignore Congress (a hopelessly corrupt organisation), (e) try to reduce pollution and improve sustainability in the US and (f) do what I can (without Congress) to bring Wall St. and its associated minions under control.

      Take it or leave it.

      Reply
    3. The Rev Kev

      The good news for Kamala Harris is that when she goes to headline that Martha’s Vineyard Reception that, (by a story in last night’s Links) “The Obamas Are Back in Their Favorite Summer Vacation Destination” of their beloved island of Martha’s Vineyard for their annual summer vacation. Talk about birds of a feather.

      Reply
      1. ambrit

        Silly me! And here I was thinking that the Obamas’ favourite littoral vacation spot was Fire Island! (Squeals with excitement.)

        Reply
    4. johnnygl

      If we’re looking at a Bernie vs. Kamala Harris vs. Biden race, i’m liking bernie’s chances quite a bit.

      Biden’s a proven terrible campaigner. He’s generally popular because the beltway press core loves him and never scrutinizes him. Once the voters take a closer look, his poll numbers will tank….just like a certain HRC.

      I suspect Sen. Harris isn’t a great campaigner, either. Her endorsement of bernie’s medicare for all bill showed what a poor liar she is with her joking aside about not telling her staff.

      Note to the senator: if you’re not telling your staff it’s probably because you aren’t serious about the issue!!!

      Bernie surprised me (and everyone) by showing what a solid campaigner he really was. After seeing lots of lefty candidates crash and burn over the years, or just never get off the ground, it was really something to see sanders grinding out wins.

      Usually candidates who are losing tail off at the end of campaigns, but bernie still won indiana by ~6pts and only lost CA by about 7ish….of the votes they counted. When CA votes on super tuesday in march and harris doesn’t get a blowout win, she’s going to have no clear path to victory and will prob drop out. That leaves bernie vs. biden. Bernie will be stronger probably everywhere west of the mississippi river and biden will be stronger along the wealthy cities of the east coast.

      A lot of the dirty tricks of the dnc won’t be as effective in 2020 since they relied on depressing turnout via no media coverage and closed primaries. Bernie’s campaign will be much better equipped to wins these battles than he was in 2016.

      I think bernie is still front-runner at this point. I’m more worried about the general election. There’s still lots of voter purges from kobach and the koch bros which can swing close states.

      To his credit, trump’s been smarter and gotten a more solid grip on his base than i expected. The wild stuff from the fbi, cia, and doj have solidified trump’s anti-establishment credibility with his base. Plus, trump’s smart enough to ignore the budget hawks and push the fiscal accelerator. It has probably staved off recession for at least a year or two, depending on fed policy.
      Turmp’s rock solid base of support has crushed any potential back-stabbing republicans thst oppose him on trade and immigration.

      If trump delivers a relatively ok economy, and no new wars, the power of incumbency might deliver a 2nd term…even against bernie, who would be his strongest challenger, by far. If it’s trump vs. anyone else but bernie…then i think trump cruises to a 2nd term…

      Reply
      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        The last few Democratic cycles in the primary were bizarre because of the HRC and then Obama circuses. Sanders rallies around the country were meant to do the same thing, but New Hampshire (I’ve never been to Iowa, but I’ve heard its similar) voters ask tough questions of candidates when they get to them which is what is going to happen without a celebrity candidate which none of these people are.

        Bernie did the rallies and relied on the anti-Clinton sentiment, but I’ve never seen an on the ground pro-Clinton sentiment that extends beyond the individual Clintons. Harris won’t get to work rope lines. She’ll have to walk into places and do town halls in living rooms where people will ask her “why didn’t you prosecute the banks?”

        Reply
      2. JohnnySacks

        If it gets down to the two of them, Bernie is going to have to have to launch some not-so-nice attacks on Biden, repetitively and forcefully. But they basically write themselves, pretty simple stuff. Another ugly campaign in store. Left to their own, either would probably defeat Trump, but the aftermath would leave either in a weaker position.

        Reply
      3. Hepativore

        Bernie Sanders might be the wisest and most rational decision at this point, but I think that the Democratic Party will do everything in its power to sabotage him should he run again even if it would be shooting themselves in the foot. As Kyle Kulinski on Secular Talk says, the Democrats would rather lose to Republicans than let Sanders win. I am not sure how tinfoil-hattish to get about this, but I do know that many of the rank-and-file Democrats have the same donors as those of their Republican competitors. This is why whomever wins, most of us still lose.

        I wonder if the corporate donors have enough influence to actually donate enough money to Democratic candidates or promise them cushy lobbyist jobs later to get them to throw election races? I know that most politicians are focused solely on their own political careers at the expense of everybody else, but I wonder if donors have promised Democratic candidates enough to make themselves sacrificial lambs in some cases.

        Anyway In all honesty, I would expect last-minute election state election law changes pushed by the Democratic party with the aim of hampering Sanders during a presidential election or sudden voting “recounts” in the favor of establishment Democrats should Sanders decide to run again. Even if he somehow winds up winning the presidential election, both parties would think of some sort of exercise in flimsy legal gymnastics and apply it retroactively to bar him from office with a broad bipartisan consensus in Washington D.C.

        While voting bad actors out in fair elections is one of the few recourses citizens of the US have, elections can only be so fair when the leadership of the two main political parties are united in deciding what is “fair” only pertains to the success of their vetted candidates and can set up the rules or selectively enforce them however they like in this aspect.

        Reply
      4. Procopius

        Bernie’s campaign will be much better equipped to wins [sic] these battles than he was in 2016.

        Yes. He started with virtually no name recognition and got more and more popular as the campaign went on. If he could have started a serious campaign six months earlier I think he could have won.

        Reply
  3. Olga

    This is a good summary of foreign (i.e., western) meddling in Afghanistan, starting in the 19th century:
    “Britain’s relationship with Afghanistan has a history that is long and deep, written in blood and fire. The three Anglo-Afghan wars fought between 1839 and 1919 are the stuff of legend. The first – an attempt to remove Afghan ruler Dost Mohammed – was an ignominious defeat, in which virtually the entire British presence in the country, 16,500 people, were picked off one-by-one. Most were killed, some taken prisoner in their attempts to flee the country, leaving just one man -Dr William Brydon- to tell the tale. Britain’s hastily assembled Army of Retribution – which razed Kabul’s ancient market district to the ground in revenge – did not prevent Dost Mohammad’s return to power. It did, however, sear hatred of Britain into the Afghan national psyche for generations to come.”

    https://www.rt.com/op-ed/435533-uk-afghanistan-mi6-sas/

    The more things change, the more…

    Reply
    1. PlutoniumKun

      I’m reminded of that on my evenings walks. In my local park in Dublin, once used as a base by 19th Century British soldiers, there is a lovely walk through a narrow valley. Its called the Khyber Road – according to local legend it was named that jokingly by soldiers as nerve-rattled veterans from the Afghan Wars would refuse to walk down it, as it reminded them of their near nemisis.

      Reply
      1. Jerri-Lynn Scofield Post author

        William Dalrymple’s book on the first Anglo-Afghan War, The Return of a King, is excellent.

        Reply
      1. jackiebass

        In the district he is running in he doesn’t have to be sharp, only a republican. The district I live in is close to his. My rep Tom Reed is cut from the same cloth. I haven’t heard anyone say they like Reed but he still gets reelected. I’m a 77 year old registered democrat. I refuse to vote for any Wall Street democrat candidate. I didn’t vote for Cuomo, Clinton, Schumer or Obama. To me they aren’t democrats but what used to be called moderate republicans.

        Reply
      1. Jerri-Lynn Scofield Post author

        I wanted to crosspost this– but was waiting on the transcript. Will do so for Sun or Mon if it’s up by then.

        Reply
    1. JEHR

      It is so enjoyable to see Bill Black chuckle over the antics of criminals who aren’t even good at being criminals.

      Reply
  4. allan

    Saudi Arabia’s Deep Pockets May Need a Top-Up [NYT Dealbook]

    Saudi Arabia is struggling to pay for its ambitions

    The kingdom has poured money from its $250 billion Public Investment Fund into the SoftBank Vision Fund, Blackstone’s infrastructure fund, Uber, and Tesla shares at the behest of Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

    The Saudi fund aims to manage $400 billion by 2020, but it’s facing some funding issues, …

    Some funding issues. There was a similar article from Bloomberg, posted in yesterday’s WC, and now this.
    MBS is turning out to be Elizabeth Holmes with an air force.

    Reply
    1. ewmayer

      “MBS is turning out to be Elizabeth Holmes with an air force.” — LOL, thanks for the guffaw, allan. Have you considered quitting your day job? :)

      Reply
      1. zer0

        Or worth less, since they wont receive the insurance to go buy property in a place that doesnt look like a wasteland.

        Reply
  5. timbers

    Crisis Retrospective

    Barney Frank on His Regrets From the Great Recession New York magazine. UserFriendly: “In case you needed another reason to hate barney frank.”

    I used to see Barney Frank at Panera Bread in Quincy from time to time, and long before that was introduced to him by my room mate as the time – who was a worshipper of officialdom and office holders. Frank is arrogant and hypocritical IMO.

    At one time, an Audit the Fed type measure secured the needed votes to move out of his committee. Frank had been on record as supporting the measure…as long as it did not have the votes to pass (just like Obama on so many issues).

    So what did he do? He voted against it, of course.

    That’s when I saw the light and lost all respect for him.

    Reply
    1. perpetualWAR

      It’s a shame you didn’t do what the Trump haters are doing to Trump’s admin. These horrendous polis need to be called onto the carpet.

      Reply
  6. bwilli123

    Re: Apple’s CEO Tim Cook— Serf Labor, Overpriced iPhones, and Wasted Burning Profits Counterpunch.
    They may not be quite so cheap serfs for much longer if Apple takes the hint.

    …”Apple has benefited from cheap labor and a strong supply chain in China and needs to share more of its profit with the Chinese people or face “anger and nationalist sentiment” amid the ongoing trade war, an article in the state-backed People’s Daily warned Tuesday. The article originally appeared in another state-backed publication, Global Times, last week.
    The opinion piece highlights how Apple made $9.6 billion in revenues in China in the June quarter, which helped the U.S. giant to recently hit a $1 trillion valuation.
    But the continuing trade war between the U.S. and China could leave Apple and other U.S. firms vulnerable as “bargaining chips” for Beijing, according to the article.
    “The eye-catching success achieved in the Chinese market may provoke nationalist sentiment if U.S. President Donald Trump’s recently adopted protectionist measures hit Chinese companies hard,” the People’s Daily said.’…
    https://www.cnbc.com/2018/08/07/apple-china-us-trade-war-bargaining-chip.html

    ….”About 10,000 people in China are employed directly by Apple, the company said. Indirectly, Apple says it accounts for three million jobs there through its supply chain, which includes contract manufacturer Foxconn Technology Co. It also says it provides work for 1.5 million app developers in China…”

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/apples-china-ties-make-it-vulnerable-if-trade-fight-gets-worse-1532430003

    Reply
    1. zer0

      Most US firms are just modern day plantations, that export slavery and import overpriced product. One doesnt truly realize how disgusting it is until you actually go and visit the suppliers/manufacturers in China. Some of them literally look like prison camps. The suicide rates are high. The eyes of the laborers look dulled, as if they know they are in a hopeless position or are worn out from working in 90 degree heat.

      Being the son of a doctor, I also noticed that many workers seems to be suffering from heavy metal or similar poisoning, as they have dark tumors on their arms and legs, and sometimes face. I visited a supplier that chromes/plates Apple products, especially their anodization process for Macbooks. A weird mixture of high tech and OSHA violations: beautifully organized and cleaned robots, with workers standing around with no face masks, while chromium dust particles and chlorine gases are spewing in chambers some 3 or 4 feet away.

      Everyone seems to forget that governments have routinely struck deals with mega corps. I have no doubt that the tariffs will probably not touch Apple, even if their products or supply chain components are included in the trade war. Remember that Foxconn and others depend on their margins as well, and have many a high profile Chinese communist party member on their boards. They dont want their pockets any less lined either.

      Reply
  7. zagonostra

    Refer: Ralph Nader’s article: “Apple and Google provide the software for 99% of all smartphones…Amazon exerts utter dominance over online shopping and is quickly getting bigger…[t]he CEOs of these companies behave like “Emperors,”

    Until citizens recognize that we live in a false democracy and refuse to play the Republican/Democrat ping-pong, humpty-dumpty, twiddle-dee and twiddle-dum re-direction/distraction game, the terminal direction of this country will not change.

    Marx was right when he described the government as “the executive committee of the ruling class” and that the prevailing ideology of a period is also that of the ruling class (just turn on any MSM outlet and you’ll get a toxic dose of it).

    We need a Party Re-alignment or a major third party run.

    Reply
    1. JCC

      Which is one of the reasons I run NetGuard on my android phone. A very versatile android firewall, open source, and flexible. Other than while at home and set for wireless only with phone provider data turned off, I block all facebook (always and everywhere), most google apps most of the time, and Instagram (always and everywhere) while on the move.

      Reply
    2. Oregoncharles

      “or a major third party run” – and who might that be? Seriously, we could use some suggestions (or volunteers).

      Reply
      1. Procopius

        The way the state laws are set up it’s not gonna happen. They’ve made it as nearly impossible as they can to get a new party on the ballot. That’s basically why Bernie had to run as a Democrat. I know many hard-working long time faithful Democrats are furious that he was not a member of the party but came so close to being nominated, but the truth is the New Democratic leaders they have so faithfully supported are toxic and must be bypassed somehow.

        Reply
  8. petal

    Ex-U.S. Sen. Talks Trump, Global Policy
    “Hanover — Former U.S. Sen. George Mitchell filled Dartmouth College’s Spaulding Auditorium to the brim for a Thursday morning lecture in which he criticized President Donald Trump’s handling of international affairs, reflected on his diplomatic career and warned of the excessive influence of campaign donors on political candidates. Just for good measure, he addressed the topic of baseball and the Boston Red Sox.

    Mitchell, a Democrat who represented Maine from 1980 to 1995, including a stint as Senate majority leader, has served in a variety of diplomatic missions, including brokering a peace agreement in Northern Ireland and, more recently, working as special envoy to the Middle East under President Barack Obama.”

    Reply
  9. Carolinian

    Re Hollywood Walk of Fame. The Chamber of Commerce which controls the tourist attraction has said that they will never remove a star and in fact cannot remove any because it is on the National Registry. West Hollywood has no say on the matter although they chose to say it anyway.

    Should that ever change then surely Ronald Reagan’s star would be a prime candidate for the jackhammer.

    Reply
    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      “Bed Time for Bonzo” may be the single greatest film ever made! Then there were those great lines in “Back to the Future.” Without Ronald Reagan, where would we be as a country? Probably living in a Star Trek style utopia with better taste than the Holiday Inn.

      On a more serious note, I saw “Man on the Moon” last month and noticed that Tony Clifton seemed to carry himself in a manner similar to our current President. I’m not saying Andy Kaufman is Donald Trump. All I’m saying is it seems like the kind of thing he might find funny.

      Reply
  10. Amfortas the Hippie

    regarding opioids.https://whowhatwhy.org/2018/08/08/battle-over-opioids-surprising-push-back-and-not-from-dealers/

    it’s the hysterical nature of so much of the reporting and rhetoric around all this that gives me the willies.
    I’ve been in chronic pain for almost 30 years, made tolerable for the first 17 by becoming a drunk.
    when I finally had to quit working, 12 years ago, after my hip had died, my doctor and i went through the perfunctory list of nsaids and whatnot, all of which did nothing for the pain, and had unpleasant side effects(as well as their own dangers–folks don’t realise what something like indomethacin can do to one’s gut, kidneys, liver, etc).
    I finally convinced him to put me on vicodin. this sales job was made easier by the apparent hopelessness of getting a new hip, due to the “greatest healthcare system in the world” excluding people who cook for a living.
    that was 8 or 9 years ago.
    I’ve schooled my doc about the management of these meds…he admitted early on that he was no expert in Pain Management.
    Ergo, I have taken it upon myself to educate myself as best I can, and take regular drug holidays…once every 1.5 years on average…to “reset the receptors”, in order to maintain hydrocodone’s effectiveness…as well as to thus Prove that I ain’t an addict. all those cold turkey months, and never a symptom of withdrawal.
    so i should be considered a model patient.
    but inject the state medical board and the dea and the cdc into the mix, and it all gets subsumed in the general hysteria and scapegoating.
    Assumptions abound, and we go back and forth between compassion and hatred of people like me who need this crap to function even in a limited capacity(I’d hafta just lay here in pain without). Everybody’s looking for a one size fits all solution…while relying overmuch on giant cartels and agencies with long histories of perfidy, simplistic media narratives that routinely ignore lack of subjective well being and economic despair(the real third rail),lumps all “drug users” into a criminal class(with it’s own unscientific assumptions and Newspeak) as well as ignores how much we still don’t know about pain…especially chronic pain.
    (On this last–and for instance, why does weather hurt so bad? lol.
    answer: nobody knows…so put an almost universally reported subjective experience into the “myth” category. I suspect that the Paper Citizens don’t want to know, since curing such things would harm the Bottom Line(holy,holy))
    Chronic Pain is often an invisible illness. In my case, I’ve been yelled at in public(“you don’t look disabled to me”) many times…but on Pain Days, I don’t leave the house, so nobody sees me when I’m at my worst, and unable to put on a good face(which is something one learns to do by osmosis. For me, it is entirely unconscious, and I am always surprised when I catch myself).
    The “debate”, thus far, is idiotic and overly selective.
    we should be able to do better.
    end rant…and please forgive: for some reason,stories like this always find me when it’s raining like hell and induce relative panic when I am at my most powerless.

    Reply
    1. h2odragon

      Learning to manage your own meds and using the doctor as a (hopefully!) barely trustworthy consultant seems wise to me no matter what your problems are. No one cares about or knows more about your health than you do.

      I’m grateful my own chronic conditions don’t need painkillers, but the docs want to recommend stuff that seems unattractive; minimally useful and eye popping expensive.

      The rain thing… Air pressure? If the barometer drops 10 hPa in a couple hours it will cripple me for the rest of the day. if it drops that far in 24hr i might not even notice it. Driving through the rocky mountains was a fun day.

      Reply
      1. Amfortas the Hippie

        I think it’s something else…perhaps even some as yet undiscovered force. I tried for years, within my limited means, to run experiments: collected a number of barometers, including a weatherglass, and avoided looking at the weather reports until I felt pain that couldn’t be accounted for by activity(how does one control for something as subjective as pain?). I’d feel it before the local pressure moved. LIGO (laser interferometer studying gravity waves) sent me their trash data(thunderstorms, etc), but math is my worst language.
        I also corresponded for a time with the long term professor emeritas of meteorology at A&M who had studied this very thing as a sort of hobby for decades, using barometric chambers and other fancy things laying around the lab.
        The mechanism remains a mystery.
        I felt Katrina when it crossed the Florida Keys(I’m in Central Texas)

        Reply
      1. Amfortas the Hippie

        I was a bad boy scout(weirdo loner genius kid), but took some useful things any way.
        so I got my Papaver Somniferum seeds stashed away for that part of the Jackpot(TSHTF) that will end my reliance on big pharma.
        much research indicates that the tea is hard to OD on, and the seeds keep well.
        I would prefer a better pill, of course…like one without the APAP, which the DEA admitted some years ago that they only require in order to punish abusers(with liver toxicity, no less. Due Process is so passe)
        And I would also prefer a functioning health care system that paid less attention to monetising pain and suffering.
        But I’m poor and cranky, and thus ignored by my betters(sic), and if wishes were horses, we’d have steak.
        I’d settle at this point for Banker Tartare.

        Reply
      1. Amfortas the Hippie

        aye. when I said I was waiting for the Holy Fool, Cheeto-Walrus was not what I had in mind.
        The Nomme deguerre is accidental. When I discovered that I needed a handle for the new intertube machine, I was reading von Eschenbach, and intuited the relationship(the wounded king’s lands lie fallow, etc), and it stuck.
        My boys have known that was my internet name for a long time, but only asked about it the other day. Luckily, we were way out in a pasture cutting firewood, so they were a captive audience,and I got to tell the whole story uninterrupted.
        It’s been 5 years since I finally got a titanium hip, but the rest of me is still problematic. When people in the feed store get all triumphant about rain like today(4″ so far) I remind them that I pay for every drop. (subtext: ergo, my medicaid is justified, dammit!)
        lol.
        “if it doesn’t kill me…”

        Reply
        1. Jean

          I read the Homeless veteran lives in Jeep article at the bottom of the “We are throwaways” quoted above;
          http://www.latimes.com/local/la-me-ln-homeless-and-waiting-20180729-htmlstory.html

          In my opinion this man who served in the military and worked all his life, plus his wife who did the same, are far more logical recipients of any help that the government could and should offer. Thank god for the V.A. Damn to hell anyone who wants to privatize or streamline it.

          Compare and contrast and see what you think.

          Reply
          1. Elizabeth Burton

            The privatization of the VA is moving right along, and the only thing I know to do is keep advising vets who use it and get lousy service why that’s happening. I found this, which suggests the conversion committee has already been selected.

            Reply
        2. knowbuddhau

          A well chosen name it is, my friend. I suspected you knew what you were doing. Wolfram von Eschenbach’s Parsifal is what I’m all about. Per ce val = right down the Middle. Except all I know of it is through Campbell. I’m jellin.

          And your sons are lucky.

          I bow in your virtual direction.

          Reply
          1. Amfortas the Hippie

            shucks.
            (shuffles nervously)
            Joseph Campbell provided a large portion of my lifetime reading list.
            Volume 4 of Masks of God was laying around the house for some reason when I was a kid. Been picking through the source material when I can find it ever since.
            That’s the kind of liberal/lefty/humanist I am, as a result.
            Humankind as a symphony.

            Reply
            1. Mel

              Volume 4: Creative Mythology. The heavy stuff. The stuff we’re expected to do ourselves. My books have been packed for a long, long time. I’ve only got the Archdruid to drag me, kicking and screaming, off in that direction.

              Reply
              1. Amfortas the Hippie

                this guy is complimentary to the Archdruid, I think
                https://longsworde.wordpress.com/
                altho I doubt that they would get along,lol.
                Archdruid has a whole carpenter’s tool box, Longsword has a hammer and anvil…maybe a file or two.
                Big into Gebser, whom I’ve not yet read.
                Deep stuff. Make sure to have a big oak tree handy for rumination.

                Reply
                1. Mel

                  Well, THAT’S interesting. Ton of stuff I’ll have to read now to catch up. I prophecy that I will disagree with his “sleep of reason” quote, ’cause I like the Gilles DeLeuze thing quoted here a while back:

                  “It is not the slumber of reason that engenders monsters, but vigilant and insomniac rationality”

                  which squares with the hot book in my thinking right now: The Master and his Emissary, by Iain McGilchrist. I judge it will be a while before I have anything cho-ate to say.

                  Reply
    2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      I feel tightness and chronic pain on the my left shoulder for decades, due to a pinched nerve in the spine. It’s likely not as painful as your situation.

      I recently notice some numbness my left pinky, in some situations.

      Reply
    3. begob

      Sorry to hear that. I recently spoke with a woman in her 20s who took up vaping to quit tobacco. She was also on daily morphine for nerve pain. One of her “hippie” friends suggested she add CBD (cannabidiol) to her vape. She tried it, and within one week was off morphine. I also know several middle-aged guys who manage lower back pain with sublingual CBD. Doesn’t work for everyone, but worth considering.

      Reply
        1. Doug Hillman

          Texas uses its police force, courts, and prisons as a combined department of revenue in order to compensate for no income tax and a generally regressive tax regime. A bit like Ferguson, Missouri. It’s an elegant solution for the rich and shameless, since they are above the law in any case.

          Reply
          1. pretzelattack

            it seems to depend on the sheriff/county, too. coming back from colorado, i used to see all these billboards touting defense lawyers who specialized in pot possession cases crossing the new mexico/texas border on 40; now there aren’t many of those signs, but there are more in a few other places driving down 287; for awhile there were more around wichita falls, now it’s wise county.

            Reply
            1. Amfortas the Hippie

              my sources tell me that here, it’s now tolerated, since so many white middle class older people(ie: non-profile) use it for medicine.
              like the seatbelt law, it;s there if the deputy needs something to pin on you.
              I’m told it’s much better in Austin.
              Meth is their big focus out here.
              just as soon as Texas comes to it’s senses with weed, I’ll be a boutique grower.
              It’s coming.

              Reply
        2. beth

          My friend has been buying it from Charlotte’s Web for 4 years w/o a problem, but, of course, she doesn’t advertise it. Some towns can’t afford the loss of revenue so continue pretending that it is forbidden. It is legal for medicinal purposes in all 50 states. The 2014 Farm bill opened the door for states to legalize it.

          Reply
    4. Burritohound

      I sincerely appreciate your story. These are the tales that need to be told; people’s real life experiences that add depth to simple narratives about tough problems. I’ve called it “island syndrome”. One feels like they are on an island, alone, with no one who understands.

      Just a thanks for sharing. I wish you pain free days ahead.

      Reply
    5. windsock

      Yes, yes yes! The weather DOES hurt!. I had cancer on a nerve in my face. That was cut out, but it left a hole. So they cut flesh, with a vein and artery to supply it blood, and a nerve, from my forearm and put them in that hole and sewed it all up. It looks absolutely bloody fantastic, cosmetically (Thank you, NHS!), but when the weather changes… Sheesh. I could cry. Or scream. And the all-knowing doctors tell me it can’t be bad, especially as the nerve has been cut out from my arm… leaving loads of loose nerve ends, as I point out.

      I’m on pain management, which aims to eventually get me off the DiHydrocodeine, Gabapentin and Ametrypteline. But when I try to lower the dosages of them, boy do I notice it.

      And yes, being ambulatory (despite two cancer diagnoses), I also get told I can’t possibly be disabled despite the scars of my face and arm.

      Thank you for the weather confirmation… it meant I had to reply.

      Reply
    6. Brooklin Bridge

      Really sorry to hear about the pain and getting caught up in the over-reaction to opiod addiction. This was touched on a few weeks ago as well.

      Reply
  11. The Rev Kev

    “California wildfires: Eight images that reveal scale of devastation”

    That story mentions international firefighters in California. About 200 Australian and New Zealand specialist firefighters left here a coupla days ago to go to America’s west and help fight some of those fires at America’s request for reinforcements. I would guess that no one would be game to tell that to Trump as he might think of them as illegally working aliens and have them arrested.

    Reply
    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      ‘…illegally working aliens…”

      Are these legions cross the borders illegally in order to fight California wildfires?

      I just searched on duckduckgo ‘illegal aliens fighting California wildfires,’ and the only one I got was one about an illegal alien arrested for setting Colorado wildfire from July, 2018.

      Duckduckgo bias here?

      Reply
      1. marym

        Illegal immigrants starting fires – false stories (Link)
        Immigrants (illegal not mentioned – seems to be immigrants with legal status) fighting fires (Link)

        Reply
        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          I get different results using duckduckgo at home and at work.

          The one at home did not show the Buzznews article about Breitbart making up that story, at least on the the first page, which would have been more recent and should have been on the first page, and before the Breitbart article, though the one or two articles I saw earlier this morning at home referred to Colorado fires in, if I recall correctly, 2017. The Breitbart article refers to the fire in Santa Rosa (presumably 2017).

          Is Duckduckgo reliable?

          And just now, it showed other articles, including a 2016 one from Foxnews, that one illegal alien was charged with murder in a California fire (the one in LA).

          Any update on that one (there was one about false charge in 2017, about the fire in Sonoma)?

          And the same page here using the computer at work shows a 2016 Sequoia National Park, from the Washington Times, with another illegal alien charged.

          But no more recent update (since 2016) on that one either.

          In any case, my original search was for illegal aliens fighting wildfires, not about them starting fires.

          Reply
          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            The Colorado fire was actually July this year, not 2017.

            I searched on DuckDuckGo using “illegal aliens Colorado fire false,” and found nothing about it being false (yet).

            Reply
            1. pretzelattack

              there have been multiple colorado fires this year, and i think 2017, too. lots of dead trees, due to drought and the bark beetle devastation provide fuel, and the high winds spread them.

              Reply
        2. David

          Man arrested for starting Colorado wildfire

          Jesper Joergensen, 52, was taken into custody for suspected arson that started the Springs Fire, the most active of around 10 blazes in Colorado, the state hardest hit by fires…

          Joergensen is not a U.S. citizen and will be handed over to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement once he has faced arson charges, said a Costilla County detention officer.

          Joergensen is Danish (source). Fox News claims he’s illegal, but ICE will only say he’s a “deportable alien” (source)

          Reply
    2. JacobiteInTraining

      When I was still a spry young lad working my way thru college on the 6 year plan (back when in-state tuition was $495/semester) I used to fight forest fires in the summer. Late 80’s to early 90’s.

      The crews I worked on were from private industry, and at least in that area (Lane County Oregon) were typically made up of about 40% or more Hispanics…many ‘illegal’, but all good guys (and gals, sometimes, even then) Hard hot sweaty dangerous work for a fair wage, plenty of ‘overtime’, and almost nowhere to spend the paychecks til the fire season was over.

      Later on, slash burning. Even later then that….holiday/season-end parties at each others houses/trailers to sizzle some meat products and guzzle cerveza & tequila with blokes & amigos who became fast friends. Still recall the ‘east side white pride’ skinhead who gave all that up when a mexican dude on the same crew saved his life with radio warnings and then personally seeing to it that wing of the crew was evacuated back up slope to the road.

      Would trust *any* of the ‘illegals’ I fought fire with…well, with my life. because I did, and they trusted me with theirs.

      Never have worked with any ICE agents, TSA idiots, DHS apparatchiks, or other of the various brands of fedcoats. Doubt I would piss on *them* even if they were burning….but maybe I would, just to prove I don’t hold grudges.

      Reply
      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        If people offer to come to the USA to fight fire, with good pay, and will go home afterwards, I think we will all thank them.

        If people from outside of Japan had offered to go inside Fukushima when it happened, even with generous pay, I think the question would have been, why do humans make other humans so desperate. Either that, or maybe feeling not so bad about humans that some would be willing to sacrifice themselves to save others. Honorary citizenship would be the least.

        Do we offer residency or citizenship to people all over the world to help with fighting fires?

        Maybe we should, but how many? Do we need 40 millions for fighting fires at this moment? Do we have to reject many, telling them to stay away?

        Reply
        1. JTMcPhee

          Naw, “we” can just put all those carceral-state prisoners to work, and not pay them squat because, well, you know why. There’s what, 2 million in prison or jail at any given time? Someone yesterday offered that being let out to fight forest fires was a good gig, even if unpaid, because it gave the inmate a chance to get out of jail for a bit. “Love thy neighbor as thyself,” but take full advantage whenever you can…

          Reply
  12. s.n.

    a November Iran regime collapse? Or Israeli psychological propaganda?
    given that the report comes from Ben Caspit i suspect the latter
    US game plan on Iran written in Tel Aviv, claim Israeli insiders
    https://www.al-monitor.com/pulse/originals/2018/08/israel-trump-administration-iran-sanctions-ayatollah-regime.html

    …According to close associates of the prime minister, everything that is happening now on the American-Iranian-Israeli front was planned in Israel, “marketed” to President Donald Trump by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and is now being implemented to “fix it or nix it,” the slogan coined by Netanyahu regarding the nuclear agreement. According to Israeli diplomatic sources, Trump is following Netanyahu’s plan meticulously….

    Reply
  13. JacobiteInTraining

    Since Washington (State) uses a nice, normal, non-hackable voting system – mail in paper ballots – and not any of this crapified electronic voting stuff….it takes time to count the ballots.

    But as more ballots are counted it is looking like Sarah Smith WA09, may well get into 2nd place – ahead of the R candidate – and thus be running in November against the mainstream/corporate democrat Adam Smith. Still a squeaker…but if I am reading the tweets right, the ballots being counted now are from more progressive districts, and (based on historical averages) often trend left. We shall see.

    Go Sarah! (from yet one more old, bald, white, deplorable, antiwar redneck who wants to burn down the current system and replace it with something equitable – preferably *before* the People resort to guillotines, if at all possible ….;)

    Reply
    1. Kurt Sperry

      A likely D vs. D contest in November between a New Deal Dem and a corporate Dollar Dem will be an interesting and rare chance to see the political lay of the land in a meaningful November contest.

      Reply
  14. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Today’s Brown Eyes vs. Blue Eyes exercise:

    Diners discover rare blue lobster at Maine restaurant, insist he be set free Bangor Daily News (The Rev Kev)

    “Let’s eat those not-so-rare brown lobsters instead.”

    Reply
      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Without boiling, they still scream (as we eat them, or as we break their legs before eating raw).

        Reply
  15. Richard

    Location as an asset – Userfriendly, I’m impressed that you even made it through the abstract – was that supposed to be english?

    Reply
  16. Seth A Miller

    Re: Location as an Asset

    Housing activists have known this for a long time: Rent Control provides the working class with concrete material benefits in the form of this and other tangible property. Hence the effort of neoliberals to introduce means testing. In one of my cases I took the deposition of Larry Gluck, one of New York’s biggest landlords. He was extremely sarcastic about my clients’ right to live in Tribeca at affordable rents. That right is valuable property, and the task is to preserve and expand it.

    Reply
  17. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    Single use plastic gloves used by scientists.

    Banning Single-Use Plastics: Can Armenia Take Out the Trash for Good? Armenian Weekly

    Do we ban when uneducated people or deplorables use them, but not when worn once and then disposed of by ‘intelligent’ scientists or physicians/nurses?

    Reply
      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Then, it’s not about single use, but about the amount of it, and presuming some people can be more responsible in disposing so they won’t go into the ocean, and others not.

        Reply
        1. Isotope_C14

          Iirc Kimberly Clark is running a lab glove recycling initiative where they turn the gloves into patio furniture.

          That won’t be used for biohazard gloves which are usually incinerated.

          Reply
          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            There are also plastic, single-use shoe covers, hair nets, masks, etc., in hospitals.

            Their users are assumed to be trustworthy to collect and turn them over to be recycled, burned or buried, and not get into the world’s oceans.

            The single use plastic syringes, though, they are all over the streets of some cities, like, for example, San Francisco.

            Reply
  18. The Rev Kev

    “Pence announces first steps in establishing ‘Space Force’”

    This development is just crazy on a stick. I would date the origins of this idea to 2002 when George Bush withdrew the United States from the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile (ABM) Treaty. The thinking seems to have been that the US and its allies could then surround Russia and China with nuclear-tipped missiles (as happened) and thus have the drop on them and put them permanently under the gun. Putin’s recent announcement of a whole new generation of weapons that bypasses any American defenses has killed that dream/nightmare stone cold dead.
    So now we have the urgency to set up a US Space Force. The TV news talked about the US needing to protect its satellites but that was crap as it has already been announced that the purpose of it is to dominate space. That means that no-one can launch a rocket without America’s permission. How long until you have weapons of mass destruction in space overwatching every country. The nightmare of having even nuclear weapons orbiting the earth was so bad that this led to the Outer Space Treaty being signed back in 1966 so that space would never be militarized.
    There was also the Space Preservation Treaty proposed in 2006 to the UN General Assembly which was a resolution against all space weapons and only the United States of America voted against it. Of course Trump would renege on any Treaty like he has so many others. Certainly Russia and China will not tolerate the idea that the US could put an EMP bomb in orbit over their countries so they would have to put their own military in space. I believe that it was Mattis that said that the US had to dominate space so that other countries could not so now you end up not so much a self-fulfilling prophecy but a military arms race in space. Idjuts! It may be in a few years that we will have

    Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star – oh crap, its an orbital nuke!

    Reply
      1. Higgs Boson

        “Nice space station you have up there. How are your astronauts that are up there going to get back?”

        Reply
    1. WobblyTelomeres

      Don’t worry. Space debris will quickly put an end to this nonsense.

      See Kessler syndrome.

      Any one space faring nation can eliminate the competition by doing the equivalent of dropping a box of nails on the highway.

      Reply
    2. Roger Smith

      “In a tragic accident today, Space Shuttle American Glory was lost today in a deadly explosion as it collided with an orbital nuclear warhead. All crew have perished….”

      Now Aliens can see what we are really about without even landing. Trash and nuclear weapons.

      Reply
    3. Olga

      Of course, if we’re lucky it’d end up like F-35 program – bloated and unable to have a competent result. The fat defense contractors, though, would be very happy.

      Reply
  19. perpetualWAR

    Banned from Twitter

    I have been kicked off Twitter a total of nine times. Why have I been kicked off? Speaking truth to power. Mostly, pointing out elected officials’ hypocrisy and laying blame for 18 million foreclosures at Obama’s feet. The last time I got kicked off, I alerted Seattle that Durkan was responsible for zero prosecutions of WaMu. Since many Washingtonians lost their shirt with WaMu’s demise, that info surely could not get out!

    Twitter does censor free speech.

    Reply
    1. Dandelion

      Many, many feminists have been banned from Twitter for pointing out the biological fact that women don’t have male genitalia.

      Reply
      1. flora

        Neolibs are owned by the TBTF banks here and in western Europe, imo.

        If WWI was billed as ‘the war to end all wars’, and WWII was billed as ‘making the world safe for democracy’, I can only wonder if a WWIII would be billed as ‘making the world safe for the tbtf/international banks’. (not entirely a snark)

        Reply
  20. DorothyT

    Re: Trump’s star on the Walk of Fame to be permanently removed after West Hollywood council vote Independent. I’m no Trump fan, but this strikes me as petty and stupid.

    The ‘star’ is on a Hollywood sidewalk. West Hollywood is a gem, incorporated as an independent city 30 years ago. It’s City Council often issues proclamations to call out human rights abuses of the LGBTQ community wherever it is threatened in the world. This time the Council called out Hollywood asking that city to remove a symbol of hatred espoused by Trump and others in the party he has created.

    I grew up in L.A. when Hollywood was the epicenter of such hate crimes. West Hollywood, before incorporating as an independent city was another focus of such attacks. Because the citizenry of that small piece of real estate allows no slipping back in human rights — not just for gays but also for seniors and renters — it has become a walkable community of safety for all.

    Reply
    1. Carolinian

      The Chamber of Commerce says that the stars are there to commemorate achievements in media and they’d have to remove quite a few of them if political or personal factors were added in.

      And there may even be some people who live in West Hollywood who don’t agree with you. Arguably Trump should never have gotten a star for his cheesy TV show but there it is.

      Reply
      1. DorothyT

        The article is incorrect. Hollywood and West Hollywood are two different cities. Hollywood is refusing to remove the star. (Hollywood Blvd. is pretty cheesy — worse than Times Sq. NYC.) So the Chamber of Commerce you are referencing is Hollywood’s.

        West Hollywood’s City Council members are elected and the campaigns are quite ‘energetic.’ They are often in headlines for their proclamations, which is what this was. They are big on animal rights too (like declawing cats, etc.) I lived there for some years before moving to NYC — it’s a true neighborhood, walkable to anything you need.

        West Hollywood experienced the horrors of the AIDS plague and stepped up like no other community in L.A. to raise money for research and care for the sick and dying. God bless it’s City Council for calling out Trump. Was it because of his “cheesy TV show”? Hardly. Will we see Trump’s Republicans attempt to overturn marriage equality? Just as they will women’s right to choose, big cuts in Medicaid, senior renters’ rights — those things that West Hollywood stands up for everyday for its diverse citizenry.

        Reply
  21. Katniss Everdeen

    Sharyl Atkisson on what an intelligence commumity “insurance policy” against Donald Trump might look like. Spoiler alert, it would look a lot like what we’ve got.

    He would have to be marginalized at every turn. Strategies would encompass politics, the courts, opposition research and the media. He’d have to become mired in lawsuits, distracted by allegations, riddled with calls for impeachment, hounded by investigations. His election must be portrayed as the illegitimate result of a criminal or un-American conspiracy.

    http://thehill.com/opinion/white-house/401116-what-would-the-intelligence-communitys-insurance-policy-against-trump

    Reply
    1. Amfortas the Hippie

      not that I like the cheeto or anything…but wouldn’t that be…like treason, or something? What part of the Constitution enables it?
      if the gop wing of Spookdom did exactly the same thing to obama, what would the reaction be?
      we’re well along the path to 193AD, perhaps
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Year_of_the_Five_Emperors

      fta:”…The political unrest began with the murder of Emperor Commodus on New Year’s Eve 192 AD. Once Commodus was assassinated, Pertinax was named emperor, but immediately aroused opposition in the Praetorian Guard when he attempted to initiate reforms. They then plotted his assassination and Pertinax was killed while trying to reason with the mutineers….” and so on.

      Reply
  22. Carey

    From the Buzzfeed article on Kamala Harris:

    Jarrod Loadholt, a Democratic strategist, said that many voters and donors see someone who can beat Trump — but they’re also interested in something more. “It’s hard not to look at her and not see the history you can make,” he said. “That alone will be very attractive to a lot of people.”

    What does this mean?

    Reply
    1. Quentin

      It means she’s a double whammy: a woman and not perfectly white (=woman of color, as the euphemism goes), perhaps in reverse order. That’s what passes for history nowadays in Democratic circles. Aren’t they all yucking it up together now on Martha’s Vineyard, her included?

      Reply
    2. Liberal Mole

      Doubling down on identity politics. After all, voting for the first woman president worked so well, never mind that said woman was a corrupt, warmongering, lying, Wall Street toad-eater who obviously disdained the proletariat. Ever watch Harris’ shambling approval of Medicare for All? I can’t believe this hapless twit is going anywhere with the electorate, just into the elite donors’ pockets.

      Reply
  23. JTMcPhee

    HegemonyHegemonyHegemony. Total full-spectrum dominance. Totally seductive wet dreaming, by the men and women of “our” armed forces and policy establishment. “We have the tools…”

    Maybe some folks remember the other “Star Wars” thing, where the Reaganauts were going to turn the whole mechanics of nuclear war over to “computers.” Millions of lines of bug-free code would take in the data from space-born and dirtside sensors, all of which would operate perfectly, without any single false-positive or false-negative failure. And the code would (even before our new AI overlords were possible ) make the decision whether to launch all the nuclear weapons (or just some of them, depending on “algos”). All this driven by space-located computers, with of course perfect radio-spectrum communications that gloriously would not be affected by solar impacts or meteoroid impacts or electromagnetic pulses.

    At least in that silly movie “War Games,” Broderick’s smart-teen character figured out how to keep WOPR from destroying the world, by bringing that AI computer to the understanding that “The only way to win the game is not to play.” Driving the careerist Air Force officers and the obligatory servile computer scientists crazy, that their toy was being taken off line…

    Reply
    1. Burritonomics

      Told today, Professor Falken would be living in the Bay Area, perhaps trying to manage his large purchase of real estate in New Zealand.

      Reply
  24. Cameron

    Regarding “Location as an asset,” why aren’t we going the Henry George route and demanding a land-value tax?

    Reply
  25. pretzelattack

    re location as an asset, so if you choose to move to silicon valley you will be rich. is this like the law of attraction?

    Reply
  26. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    THE KOCH BROTHERS COMMISSIONED A SURVEY OF AMERICANS AND FOUND MOST LIKE A $15 MINIMUM WAGE, FREE COLLEGE, AND UNIVERSAL HEALTH CARE The Intercept. This shouldn’t be news to anybody. Tom Ferguson’s been writing about this issue for years– the disjunction between what voters say they want and what they get see his Right Turn (co-authored with Joel Rogers, 1987).

    Again, it’s universal healthcare, and not FREE universal healthcare.

    Reply
    1. HotFlash

      Single-payer is not free, although it can be free at the point of use. As it should be, IMO. Kinda like wars are free.

      Reply
      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        To be consistent with free college preceding it, I think, free universal health care can be understood to mean health care (and college education) is not free, but it can be at the point of use.

        Not sure about wars…are wars free at the point of use?

        Reply
    2. rd

      The interesting thing is that all three of these can be very good for business and the wealthy.

      Decent wages mean that the proletariat has money to spend which creates revenue for businesses. It also reduces safety net needs.

      Free (or at least inexpensive college which avoids many of the moral hazards of free) can provide an educated work force that has far fewer stresses, more flexibility, and less focus on wages to cover their student debt.

      Universal health care can relieve employers of the burdens of trying to provide healthcare at affordable prices to their employees. The companies can focus on their core business.

      Reply
      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        I think HR 676 proposes free universal health care, not just universal health care.

        Lambert has pointed out the need for it to be free as well, I believe.

        Reply
        1. rd

          Somebody has to pay for it at some point. The Canadian system typically collects a monthly payroll tax to pay for it. Most of the patient services are then free or low co-pays.

          The key thing with single-payer systems is that costs are lower because administration costs are much lower and the system collects big data on outcomes that allows for rational modifications of protocols to enhance outcomes and cost reduction. The key to controlling costs is to keep people out of hospitals and deliver as many services as possible through the primary care physicians. So the good single-payer systems are finding that it pays to spend more on primary care visits to keep people from entering the hospital in the first place and especially to prevent returns to the hospital due to avoidable complications.

          Reply
          1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

            I think if we can have free college, we can have free universal health care (funded at the federal level…MMT).

            Reply
  27. Jean

    “Court orders ban of top-selling pesticide.”

    Thank you 9th Circuit.

    Here’s a tip for pesticide purveyors.

    If you claim your product is so safe, arrange a press conference where the Board of Directors and their families, to and including grandchildren, each drink a glass of water containing the “safe threshold” of each of your products on camera under the supervision of a chemist who can measure out the drops of the stuff.

    Of course there will need to be some means of measuring the provenance of the products, off the shelf from a random vendor, sealed and highly controlled. The entire process supervised by lawyers, notarized and vetted by State weights and measures officials.

    To make it more interesting, perhaps there could be only one glass of water doped with the product and no one of the family members would know who was drinking it. “Chemical Roulette.”

    Please put your mouth where your money is.

    Reply
    1. beth

      Also, bring in Obama for a drink. He did that for Flint, why not add your town and my town.

      At what point will he decide enough is enough?

      Reply
    2. JTMcPhee

      I don’t think that would be enough of a stress test. Because a couple of things: first, a lot of corporate types either believe the hype from their “scientists,” or are willing to take one for their corporate overlords and compatriots, and to preserve their well-paid positions. And are happy or at least willing to volunteer delivering their families to the Great God Moloch.

      And next, dosing at the level that is considered “safe” under the EPA standards (where they exist), in a single dose, is not even close to enough of a health threat to scare either the potentates or, after the kind of “preparation” the corporate types will do, their families. And how many potentates give a poop about what happens to anyone but their perfect psychopathic selves?

      As to the need for careful control of the experimental conditions, that’s right exactly on: I recall there was a Dow scientist/executive who, in order to “prove the safety of I think it was 2,4-D or 2,4,5-T, one of those pesticides, claimed to drink it either pure or in a strong dilution, with “no ill effects.” And as I recall the story, someone grabbed the glass he used at one of those events and had it analyzed, and lo and behold! No pesticides at the level of detection (parts per million back then.)

      Anyone wanting to read a documented bit of reporting on how the “chemical industry” operates, what the “ethical standards” of these corporate persons are, can read about Dow and Shell selling “soil fumigants” for a few million dollars in profits, and equally important in the corporate mind, the “cost avoidance” of not having to pay anything to just remove the persistent and carcinogenic “garbage side products” from their products in the manufacturing process. To the point that they have “socialized” billions of dollars in cost of treatment in public water systems (the ones that can afford to treat, not all of them can) and lots of deleterious health effects to mopes in places like the San Joaquin Valley. Here’s the article:

      CANCER-CAUSING PESTICIDE ‘GARBAGE’ TAINTS TAP WATER FOR MILLIONS IN CALIFORNIA https://www.ewg.org/research/cancer-causing-pesticide-garbage-taints-tap-water-millions-california#.W239NoopChA

      The article also displays the weakness of state and federal regulatory agencies in doing what their charters supposedly require, “protecting human health and the environment.”

      For that “pesticide challenge” to be effective, the rules would have to require the potentates to drink water containing the full spectrum of sh!t that their and their fellow chemical manufacturers’ profit-taking has introduced into the affected water supplies, and get exposed like the mopes do, by drinking it every day, bathing in it, inhaling the vapors from showers and cooking pots and the rest.

      And the challenge would have to be prospective: There are laws that to a certain extent require that corps intending to peddle new chemical compounds to the world are supposed to do testing to at least develop toxicity profiles (albeit via very limited sets of tests. One of those tests ought to be to require the corporate executives ingest and inhale and have skin contact with their planned products, and then you might see some different behaviors. Of course that is NEVER going to happen, for all the reasons that reading here at NC over years make very clear.

      Like a lot of ethical norms, the “precautionary principle” that would bar introduction of threats to health and the environment from chemicals and other ‘benefits of our advanced civilization” from ever being rolled out until the proponents and profit-takers prove their safety, gets talked about and even referenced, sort of, in various laws and standards. Referenced, but not built into the whole structure, and certainly not enforced. And there are so many “inputs” and parts to the prioritization of profits and ‘growth’ over protection of health and the environment. Here’s a slightly obscure article, for jargon, that lays out a lot of them:

      The Legacy of the Precautionary Principle in US Law: The Rise of Cost-Benefit Analysis and Risk Assessment as Undermining Factors in Health, Safety and Environmental Protection http://ashford.mit.edu/sites/default/files/documents/C28.%20LegacyOfPrecaution_19.pdf

      (As to drinking toxic stuff to provide its safety, another funny anecdote: a guy who ran a Mafia-linked landfill and chemical waste dumping site in Ohio was confronted by EPA investigators and TV cameras at the site. It was clear that colorful chemicals were running off and leaching into the spots of surface water there, including in truck tracks in the dirt roads across the site. This guy was so with it that he demonstrated that the liquid was innocuous by scooping up a glass of the stuff in a tire track, and drinking it down. And within a few minutes, he was in an ambulance on the way to the hospital…)

      Reply
  28. marieann

    Thank you so much for the article on Pot for pets. I did not know about using it for pets and I have 2 very anxious kitties one of whom gets himself into respiratory distress every time the wind blows the wrong way.

    I will be checking this out with my vet as we in Canada will be given the Cannabis freedom in October.

    Reply
    1. ewmayer

      Glad you liked it, marieann – if you haven’t already done so, also check out audrey jr’s comment below on using hash oil (or some extract of that kind) on her 18-y.o. arthritic tom. (‘Tom’ as in cat, not husband/boyfriend/son. :)

      Reply
  29. Burritohound

    Re: Location as an asset.

    I took the bait and read the thing (well, most of it). And as an unemployed person with a newly minted Quant Econ degree who is considering whether leaving hyper-expensive sunny SoCal in search of greener pastures, I can confirm that this makes me wanna barf. As if I can just go look over a location prospectus, and make a wise (rational!) informed choice.

    These models are exercises in making pretty equations to fit obvious relationships – and then leave out critical factors. So almost worse than useless. Where the hell is the friction in moving and changing jobs? How about attempting to quantify the network effects in play for higher income quartiles?

    Yes indeed, people with less resources have fewer choice.

    Reply
  30. Jean

    The ‘We are throwaways” story is required reading for my daughters as a warning. Hopefully, they will make sure all their friends read it.

    “The government who are in a position to help us would just want to forget about us — unless they’re forced to do something.”

    O.K, Who is going to force government and what good will “help” do with this kind of behavior as an antecedent?

    “Laura… became a teenage mom, giving birth to the first of her five children at 16.”
    “Both John and Laura have struggled with addictions to heroin and to meth, and both have done time for drug convictions, court records show.” “Their days were often consumed with finding and using drugs. ” Now “three of Laura Kasten’s five children battle with drug addiction.”

    “Prison time for assault with a deadly weapon. He had been convicted of battering Laura, according to court records, and was prone to violent outbursts, she said. Once, he set propane cans in the oven, trying to blow up their old home.”

    “One day, John said, he hopes to save enough money to start hormone therapy and transition from male to female.”

    How can government “help” them? No matter how many free nights in motels they get, they have to help themselves. Other than that unlikely outcome, the best thing they could do would be to relocate to San Francisco, get free city health insurance and possibly free hormone therapy and social acceptance for ‘Jan.’

    City Public Health Nurse supervised drug shooting galleries–free needles provided, would solve another problem. Housing is issued by lottery, they might get lucky. S.F. has spent several billion on homeless services–so far. That move might be their most logical choice.

    Reply
  31. DolleyMadison

    Those who justify silencing voices they dont like under the guise of private property rights, need to know that other tech platforms like online banking can also ban you in order to withhold evidence from the court. When Ocwen first began attempting to illegally foreclose on my home, I printed my online banking records to prove my perfect payment history. Within 3 days BofA deleted those records from their system, citing private property rights- they own the online system. They also prevented me from re-setting Ocwen up as a payee – only my Ocwen transactions were deleted. Think about that when you rejoice the banning of folks you dont like. I also had emails to regulators that “disappeared” from gmail. It is scary stuff.

    Reply
  32. oh

    Some thoughts after reading “Bad Blood: Secrets and Lies in a Silicon Valley Startup”

    A well written summary of the book. I read the book and it surprised me to find out that the Wall Street Journal did not suppress the story and allowed Carreyrou to publish the book.

    It looks like the Musk and Tesla are following the same playbook as Elizabeth from the angle of pumping the stock and getting loans as well as stacking the board with powerful interests.

    Can’t wait for Musk’s empire to implode.

    Reply
    1. CWalsh

      I’d place a small wager the result of that will be that most of the suffering will be of the employees and contractors who have built that enterprise — not Musk.

      Reply
  33. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

    California wildfires: Eight images that reveal scale of devastation BBC

    I have been trying to find photos of any recovery today, or of people still struggling to cope in the aftermath, related to the Thomas Fire last winter.

    No luck for me so far. Any would be greatly appreciated.

    Reply
  34. Jessica

    About Ugo Bardi- How the World Elites are Going to Betray Us:

    https://www.resilience.org/stories/2018-08-07/how-the-world-elites-are-going-to-betray-us-lessons-from-roman-history/

    in the comments on yesterday’s Water Cooler:
    The difference between Roman elites making their latifundia increasingly self-sufficient and current elites with their survivalist fantasies is that the Roman elites were doing something that economically made sense. However selfish they were – and remember that most of the slaves and peasants were better off with the latifundia being more self-sufficient and less commercially oriented – the Roman elites were adjusting rationally to the gradual return of transportation and communication and education to a level that was sustainable with the technology then available.
    An empire like Rome in the West gained its power from its growth and started into decline the moment that it stopped growing. On the other hand, the slowness of communication and transportation, the low level of education, and the larger cultural differences meant that it could not have gotten much bigger.
    The same non-sustainability can be seen with the earlier Persian Empire (the one that failed to conquer the Greeks), Alexander the Great’s empire, the Islamic Empire, and the Mongol Empire as well as the rise and fall of Chinese dynasties.
    On the other hand, the survivalist fantasies of the current elites are purely parasitic. They are an attempt to convert a power advantage in the current system into a power advantage after a breakdown of civilization without creating anything that will actually provide anything to that post-civilization world.

    Reply
    1. Olga

      Thanks, a good read. This sounds very familiar: “We can see that clearly in Namatianus’ poem: he never ever hints that Rome was doomed. At most, he says, it was a temporary setback and soon Rome will be great again.” I guess kinda like MAGA…

      Reply
  35. Oregoncharles

    I don’t know about cats, but I know dogs will eat marijuana. Lo these many years ago, a housemate’s dog ate his entire stash; the dog slept the rest of the day, but was other wise unharmed.

    Reply
    1. Mo's Bike Shop

      My last dog was demanding, whenever anyone lit up you were his best-friend-with-a-sandwich until you gave him a shotgun. Or three. When he was good, he’d give a sneeze and head back to his dog projects.

      Never liked beer. Stole one from a guest around 8 months old and didn’t even finish it.

      Reply
  36. Big River Bandido

    “Collins is the latest example …,” Rep. John Sarbanes (D-Md.) said Thursday in a conference call with reporters… “We just want you to know Democrats have a program to create a different kind of government.”

    …polling commissioned in July by the Center for American Progress, a progressive think tank, and obtained by POLITICO shows that the anti-corruption plank works just as well with voters, and in some cases better, than talking about health care and the economy, the other two tenets of Democrats’ messaging

    “I do think it’s breaking through,” said Bustos, one of a dozen House Democrats in a Trump-won district.

    Between the public corruption of its own neoliberal ID politicians (e.g., Sen. Robert Menendez), the internal corruption of its “party” institutions, and its tawdry history of being the concubine of Wall Street — the Democrat Party has zero credibility on this issue, and it’s going to fall flat at the polls.

    A little less than 12 weeks before the general election, with a host of potent issues that have been front and center with the public for years — and this is what the Democrats’ focus groups came up with. I’m sure that the son of Senator Sarbanes knows the game and is just reading the script provided. Same with Bustos, who only received her “leadership” position by default, as she’s just the only neoliberal from anyplace place remotely like East Moline who hasn’t already lost her seat.

    I think Democrats are going to have a major hangover on Nov. 7.

    Reply
  37. audrey jr

    Thanks so much for the pet CBD link today. I have an 18 y. o. Burmese cat named Chester and he has pretty severe arthritis in both of his hip joints rendering any movement painful for him.
    I have had him on CBD oil for two years now and it has made a tremendous difference in his life.
    He is able to eat and sleep comfortably. He moves around fairly well for an old cat and appears to walk much more pain free than he used to.
    Over the years I have read a whole lot of testimonial evidence from other pet owners as to their experiences with treating their pets for a variety of conditions. The most common ailments are anxiety issues related to eating and grooming and, of course, arthritis.
    Since I work in health care I am acutely aware of the damage to the liver that most prescription meds can cause over the long term and that is one of the best features of CBD oil. It is non toxic.
    Cats, in particular, can not metabolize pain meds and are unable to filter out the toxic components of pain meds. The meds stay in the body for days and come out through respiration. Cats can literally smell pain meds coming from another cat via the breath.
    Anyhoo, this stuff really works well and for any of you animal lovers who have suffering pets I can assure you that CBD is safe and effective and will make a huge difference in your pets quality of life.

    Reply
  38. audrey jr

    On a footnote: CBD oil is very good for a large variety of human medical conditions, too.
    I read the most comprehensive medical research paper done on the subject several years ago; it was a longitudinal study on the effects of CBD in human arthritis sufferers and the results were phenomenal.
    Anyone with liver issues might want to take a look at using CBD.
    I’m afraid I do not remember where I found the study but it was on the ‘net’ and you should have no trouble accessing it. I only saved the dosage schedule(s) and suggestions for use.
    Have read many testimonials as to its effectiveness in treating juvenile seizure disorders.

    Reply
    1. ewmayer

      ‘I can hardly keep up with the articles as it is.’

      So you want her to feel better soon, just not *too* soon, is that what you’re saying? :)

      Reply
  39. Enzica

    Hey everyone, we’ve got another Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez here in Washington state. Her name is Sarah Smith and she is very likely to have won the 2nd spot in the top two primary vote last Tuesday. The 1st spot went to longtime incumbent Democrat Adam Smith. Democrat vs Democrat in the November election.

    https://www.votesarahsmith.com/

    Reply

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