Links 11/15/18

These raccoons aren’t rabid, they’re just ‘drunk,’ police in West Virginia say USA Today (Kevin W)

Watch: 5-foot long cobra sneaks into businessman’s BMW; rescued Mirror Now News

Tickborne diseases such as Lyme hit record highs in the U.S., CDC says CDC (David L)

Passenger complains about lack of window, flight attendant draws him one (PHOTOS) RT (chuck4)

US States Are at Risk for Catastrophic Flood Damage, Climate Scientists Say Inverse (David L)

Watch the warming ocean devour Alaska’s coast in this striking time-lapse video Washington Post (furzy)

Electriq~Global Says Its Water-Based Fuel Can Power Your Car Forbes (David L)

New Insights into the Aging Brain EurekaAlert (David L)

New techniques may soon make designer babies a reality – are we ready? New Scientist

Robots Have a Diversity Problem The New New (Dr. Kevin)

Our Richard Smith, pursuer of scammers!


How Brexit Broke Up Britain New York Review of Books

Tony Blair: The deal isn’t a compromise, it’s a capitulation Yahoo (Marshall)

Brexit agreement: Theresa May faces MPs’ questions BBC. Chart shows the deal needs only qualified majority approval by the EU Council.

Draft Brexit deal ends Britain’s easy access to EU financial markets Reuters

Tellingly, the EC page with the draft agreement was down:


Trump Cancels Afghanistan War Due to Weather Duffle Blog (Kevin W)

Jewish establishment terrified of Palestinians Mondoweiss (chuck4)

Republicans Used a Bill About Wolves to Avoid a Vote on Yemen War Intercept

UAE backs ‘early’ UN peace talks to end Yemen conflict | TheHill. UserFriendly: “MBS starting to look lonely.”

Rocket alert apps save lives — and spread anxiety Times of Israel. Kevin W: “The real story here is how some of these modern apps keep people’s nerves jangled.”

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

Google Maps keeps track of your conversations with local businesses engadget (David L)

Imperial Collapse Watch

Clapper’s Credibility Collapses Consortiumnews (UserFriendly)

Trump Transition

Bolton aide exits White House after high-profile clash with first lady The Hill

Fox News supports CNN’s Jim Acosta in lawsuit against Trump White House’s ban. Slate (furzy)

Pentagon Officials Forced to Make Fewer Public Appearances to Avoid Provoking Trump Daily Beast. Resilc: “A geometric increase in craziness is about to happen as the wagons get circled for 2020.”

Flake Pledges To Block Committee Votes On Judges — Until Mueller Bill On Senate Floor NPR (David L)

Save Us, Al Gore New York Times (David L)

Michael Avenatti, attorney for Stormy Daniels in two lawsuits against Trump, is arrested on suspicion of domestic violence Washington Post (furzy)

California Burning

Any PG&E Bankruptcy Would Pit Bonds Against Burnt Out Homes Bloomberg

‘The whole town is gone:’ drone video reveals the scale of fire destruction in Paradise YouTube (Kevin W)

Kill Me Now

Hillary Clinton 2020 Rumblings Intensify. God Help Us. YouTube


How Doctors And Nurses Cope With The Human Toll Of Gun Violence NPR (David L)

Fake News

Facebook Hired GOP Oppo-Research Firm to Link Protesters to George Soros: Report Daily Beast (furzy)

Delay, Deny and Deflect: How Facebook’s Leaders Fought Through Crisis New York Times. “It also tapped its business relationships, lobbying a Jewish civil rights group to cast some criticism of the company as anti-Semitic.”

Houston Got Hammered By Hurricane Harvey — And Its Buildings Are Partly To Blame NPR (David L)

CalPERS slashed their pensions. Now they’re trying to get their money back Sacramento Bee (Kevin W). They have no case but this still looks bad for CalPERS. Makes beneficiaries nervous about their pensions.

Crude’s Collapse Is Sending Shockwaves Across Global Markets Bloomberg

US shale oil forecasts too optimistic, even IEA agrees DW

Guillotine Watch

Kim Kardashian’s Private Firefighters Expose America’s Fault Lines Atlantic (David L)

Class Warfare

Another NYC cab driver deep in debt kills himself New York Post

Tucker Carlson backs Ocasio-Cortez on criticism of Amazon HQ2 incentives: ‘World’s richest man’ Bezos just got $2B from taxpayers The Hill (UserFriendly)

Koch-backed groups blast carveouts to corporations after Amazon announcement Th eHill. UserFriendly: “How many issues did you expect Bernie, AOC, Tucker Carlson, and the Koch Bros to agree on?”

Ford and Walmart to test driverless car deliveries Financial Times (David L)

Antidote du jour:

And a bonus from Ignacio: “I hope you enjoy this video as much as I did.”

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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    1. openandshut

      And yet Schumer, who actually lost seats, just sails on through.
      Yeah. Let’s talk about identity politics.

      1. JohnnyGL

        Schumer re-affirmed as Majority Leader in a closed door meeting, — no vote, no record, no transparency, no accountability.

        Really, it’s everything that is wrong with the way the Democratic Party works in a nutshell. They’ve visibily, repeatedly worked diligently to isolate and insulate themselves from as much transparency and accountability as they can get away with.

      2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Schumer is mentioned in NYT’s Facebook article…his daughter works for Zuck.

        I hope Sanders stays as far away from Chuck as possible, though it seems they are close, for a long time.

    2. Katniss Everdeen

      “She just elected…..”

      If memory serves, it was just about three weeks ago, SHE(!) did that by declaring that she would be a “transitional speaker who would bridge the current generation to the next, hoping to alleviate lingering concerns among some Democrats uncertain about electing her to the powerful position.”

      Maybe she just forgot. Or maybe the “next generation” doesn’t trust a creaky old, entrenched hag to be a reliable “bridge.”

      In any event, the meat of the matter comes at the end of the Slate article, and it will not go unnoticed:

      “So you want to flip one of our own who has promised their constituents, who just voted for them, in a huge election,” Ryan said, “[and] your goal is to get them to lie in their first act in Congress? They will not have been in Congress more than an hour, and our leaders are asking them to lie?

      “I just think that’s not the way we should be doing business around here.”

      (Then there are the committee chairmanships which are awarded by the speaker. Could it be that the “next generation” may not be as impressed as the old one by insufferable grandstanders like adam schiff and maxine waters?)

      1. Eclair

        Ouch, Katniss! I am assuming, based on your nom de plume, that you are female, although that does not necessarily follow. But you are making an ad hominem attack on Pelosi by tagging her as a ‘hag.’ That term applies only to women and does not have a male equivalent. It really belongs with those terms used for centuries by men (and other women) to demean women and keep them in their place: hag, slut, cow, crone, witch, bitch, whore) these are some of the descriptors with that apply only to women (well, maybe not ‘whore,’ it has taken on a more general use.)

        Being ‘old’ does not necessarily preclude being smart, sharp, progressive, useful, incisive. Bernie Sanders is only one year younger than Pelosi. Noam Chomsky will be 90 in a few weeks.

        I am a few months younger than Pelosi. (No comments, please!)

        There are many many reasons to deplore Pelosi and make a case that she should retire and return to her farm (as was the custom for Roman law-makers) and write her memoirs. Merely being ‘old’ is not one of them, However, being in a position of power in the moribund Democratic Party for over 40 years is probably an excellent reason for her to be considering an ‘honorable’ retirement. And, we could list a dozen other reasons for her to pursue retirement.

        But, please, labelling a woman, any woman, as a ‘hag’ is not only demeaning to women because it is a form of demonization, but is also an easy way out. It precludes taking some time and effort to list the ‘real’ reasons why Pelosi should go.

        And, Katniss, my apologies for calling you out personally on this. Other commenters have used the ‘hag’ term when discussing disliked older female politicians. It’s just today I felt I had to voice my objections.

        1. RUKidding

          Thank you for calling this out. I agree that these debasing terms are coming up far too often, particularly when describing female Democratic politicians. Enough!

          I have many issues and concerns vis Pelosi. Stick to the facts of how she is operating (or not) as a politician. Let’s not go down the road of dissing her for her age, her gender or other personal characteristics that don’t have anything to do with how she is doing her job.

          1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

            Sure, let’s have a dialogue that can’t discuss anything anymore. Men and women are identical, and old and young are the same thing. While we’re at it, “War is Peace” and “Ignorance is Strength”.

            I’d suggest that age is 100% at issue here. Nancy may not be a “hag” but she and her ideas and her approach are old and tired. Fill in the names of the rest of the so-called “Democratic Establishment”, including their Dear Leader girding her loins for battle in Chappaqua, NY.

            DiFi is 85 fer chrissakes. So what is the experience of being 85 and vastly wealthy? How does that condition make you feel and act? Does that condition bear any relationship to that of your constituents? Does it compel you to lead the charge for radical reform, or does it compel you to protect the ways and means that have served you so incredibly well for 85 years? Does it in fact completely blind you to the need for such urgent reform? Potholes in the road are your limo driver’s problem, not yours. They’re the taxpayer’s problem when the limo needs a new undercarriage. And if you choke on a lobster canape at the gala dinner paid for by your best friends in Big Pharma you certainly have not the slightest concern that the hospital bill will bankrupt you.

            1. RUKidding

              IMO, you just made my point for me. If you want to discuss how politicians’ ideas are “old and tired” and lead them to making bad decisions: fine. I posit that someone quite young could exhibit “old and tired” viewpoints, whilst someone older could exhibit fresher, newer, more relevant (if you will) viewpoints.

              Speaking only for myself, I don’t see Bernie Sanders often expressing “old and tired” viewpoints. YMMV, of course.

              I have no issue with someone pointing out how a particular politician’s wealth (and how they achieved that) may therefore lead them to making decisions that are not in the best interests of those who are not wealthy. That’s an entirely credible argument, and one that I’ve made many times, myself.

              We have to agree to disagree. Calling names gratuitously does nothing, imo, to bolster a viewpoint, and I disagree with dissing someone on account of their age. Many might take the opposite tactic – as happens, for example with AOC – that they’re too young and inexperienced and don’t know what they’re doing.

              My suggestion, which anyone may choose to ignore, is to leave age out of it and focus, instead, on other issues that are more relevant about how a politician is behaving and/or responding in office.

        2. WheresOurTeddy

          “Being ‘old’ does not necessarily preclude being smart, sharp, progressive, useful, incisive.”

          No, but being Nancy Pelosi does. Also, if the track record wasn’t 40 years of abject failure, maybe the ire directed at the Second Gilded Age ‘leaders’ of the Democratic party wouldn’t be so pronounced.

        3. ewmayer

          “That term applies only to women and does not have a male equivalent.”

          Which does not mean male-specific analogs of such pejorative terms do not exist, mind you: geezer, (old) fart, lecher, dirty old man, old goat, lothario, etc. I admit the richness of such terms does appear greater on the distaff side, and there are categories where there really appear to be no male analogs, e.g. words for the stereotypical nagging wife: nag, harridan, shrew, fishwife, harpy. My online thesaurus gives an even longer list:

          harridan, shrew, termagant, virago, harpy, vixen, nag, hag, crone, dragon, ogress; fishwife, hellcat, she-devil, gorgon; martinet, tartar; informal: old bag, old bat, battle-ax, witch; archaic: scold.

        4. Oregoncharles

          A linguistic quibble: both “crone” and “witch” now have positive uses, mainly among neopagans; and there’s a campaign to do the same for “slut,” albeit mostly within porn and the kink movement. That one can also be applied to men, thought it rarely is.

          I’ve been trying to think of a male equivalent for “hag”, but all I get are phrases like “old goat,” so I think you’re right about that one. I agree it’s an unfortunate word choice. It reflects severe aggravation.

        5. Katniss Everdeen


          The definition of “hag” from the “Free Dictionary” by Farlex (whatever that is) is:

          1. Offensive An old woman considered to be ugly or frightening.
          a. A witch; a sorceress.
          b. Obsolete A female demon.
          3. A hagfish.

          With the exception of ugly, which is subjective, and hagfish, which I don’t even know if it’s a thing, I must stand by my characterization.

          And being an “senior” woman myself, I claim the right to use the word “hag” in the same way that the “n” word is acceptable exclusively among members of a specific phenotypic group.

          Please don’t be offended. Respect is earned as is derision. Derision was my intent. I actually considered whether or not to use the word, and decided it was appropriate.

          I hope you will not let it detract from my main point which is–she promised something she had no intention of delivering. As per usual.

          1. RUKidding

            Thanks for the information, which is interesting.
            Will have to agree to disagree.

            Whatever “group” one belongs to… I still feel that using derogatory language and calling names adds nothing to one’s argument, nor does it bolster the point one may be trying to make.

            There’s loads and loads of things to point out about Nancy Pelosi, which you have done quite well. Calling her a “hag” adds nothing to, just detracts from, your otherwise sound points.

            And on the Internet, we really don’t know what “group” one belongs to.

          2. todde

            My god, say what you want and don’t fret for a second what someone else thinks.

            I don’t have a high regard for any of these people who are in politics, certainly not Pelosi.

            I am just glad none of us will be manning the barricades when the time comes.

        6. Eclair

          A late comment here, and my opinion as others may (and do) differ. You may use any pejoratives you wish in describing, ranting , crying about public figures, in politics or in business, in private and among your family and friends. I regularly do, and my long-suffering spouse listens daily to my blasphemous rants on: John Bolton, Jeff Bezos, Rick Scott, Chuck Schumer, Ryan Zinke, Nikki Haley, La Clinton, and the list goes one. (I simply must ignore our Peerless Leader, as it would be too exhausting to scream at his every tweet.)

          One of the benefits of reading and commenting on NC over the years, is that it has forced me to hone my debating skills, such as they are. I have been slapped down for sloppy comments, not doing my homework to marshall my facts, reacting without thinking. Both Yves and Lambert (I keep the list of rhetorical devices that Lambert refers to often, but, alas, have been unable, yet, to master it) hold themselves to a higher standard and we commenters should do it also. One need only to dip a toe in the toxic comment sections of some blogs or news outlets to realize how poisonous the atmosphere can become when commenters let loose their rage and spew invective, not facts and carefully curated opinion. (Sorry for using ‘curated.’ It just crept in! Argh!)

    3. Big River Bandido

      Oh gear dog. What role did Pelosi or Schumer have in “winning” anything other than their own elections?

      This fetishization with Congressional “leadership” would be hilarious if it weren’t so damn pathetically uninformed.

      1. polecat

        If I may BRB .. allow me to make a minor adjustment:

        “This fetishization of Congressional “leadership” would be hilarious if it weren’t for those dieing for decent wages, and/or from the heroin of despair !”

        1. flora

          I liked the last para of that CNN report:

          “Unfortunately, this cycle the DCCC has chosen to spend money on negative campaigning and mudslinging against progressive Democrats in primary elections, which is something Congresswoman Tulsi Gabbard cannot support,” said Erika Tsuji, who is Gabbard’s political director.

              1. Wukchumni

                If any of our generals had the same record as coaches of professional sports teams, they would have all been fired long ago.

                1. The Rev Kev

                  Well the President is also the Commander in Chief which means that they are in the direct line of command to them. Frankly the US has far, far more Generals right now than they did back in WW2 when the US armed forces numbered about 15 million people. I bet that you could sack two thirds of them and push their responsibilities down the line of command and get a better organization out of it.

                  1. Procopius

                    I remember reading, probably fifty or sixty years ago, that the German Wehrmacht, which American propaganda portrayed as Sergeant Schultz-like, actually had a smaller ratio of officers to men than any other army of the time. In addition their training and morale were superior. In any battle where the Allied and German forces were of a comparable size the Germans invariably won. We have far too many “flag officers” (generals and admirals) now and it’s one of the reasons we have so many expensive weapons systems that don’t work.

                    1. ObjectiveFunction

                      That’s actually far from true; defenders normally beat equal numbers of attackers, regardless of army. The Germans were generally defending by the time the US entered. Moreover their chronic strategic and logistical inferiority put the landser more often into ‘do or die’ situations, where they earned a rep for making the Allies pay for every yard.

                      On occasions where GIs were defending and the chips were down (e.g.Sicily, Lorraine, Vosges, the Bulge) they showed identical tenacity and skill to the Germans. There are in fact few cases after Kasserine where company+ sized US units were overrun or routed, except under overwhelming odds (Bulge Day 1, Salerno, Rangers at Anzio, Vire et Taute)

                1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

                  I hope she can do that, and on that alone, she will have outdone Eisenhower who could only warn of the military-industrial complex.

                  Couldn’t he have just told the other generals and their allies to stop?

                  1. emorej a hong kong

                    Eisenhower’s timing — in his farewell speech — is a clear hint that he feared the consequences of earlier speaking out on, much less ordering a “stop” to, MIC activities. Arguably this timing by Eisenhower, who knew more about the US military than any other US President, supports the theory that his less-knowledgeable successor suffered such consequences from Dallas’s grassy knoll.

          1. Elizabeth Burton

            And now the DCCC is literally taking full credit for the voter turnout on Twitter. I kid you not. They are crowing about the number of people of color who voted and implying they had something to do with it.

            The attacks on Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez from The Comfortable, demanding that she stop acting like a child and give her support to Pelosi, have reached disgusting levels there as well. One senior-citizen Liberal (in the Thomas Frank sense) literally brought up her stint of bra-burning in the ’60s to criticize AOC for not properly supporting women.

            Trust me, you do not want to get me started on what I think of the bra-burners whose only interest was in getting their elite candidates into C-suites, and who decided fighting over whether we should add “herstory” to the dictionary to counter the patriarchal burden of HIStory was more important than battling for free or low-cost childcare for the working single mothers who cleaned their houses.

            1. drumlin woodchuckles

              Were they the people for whom phrases such as ” Goldman-Sachs Feminism” and ” the Tiffany Glass Ceiling” were invented?

      2. NotTimothyGeithner

        Like the health insurance industry, they often serve as all encompassing villains for other problematic actors. Insurers run interference for HMOs, and a Congressman can gripe about the caucus as long as the place is run by useless figures such as Pelosi and Schumer. Local partisan Dems gripe, but they will simply revert to following their own local villain because of the convenient excuse.

        If a Democratic leader was perceived as a “doer” or someone who did get things done, the failures of individual electeds would be far more pronounced.

      3. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        I thought a total defeat this time would have been easier to take over the D party.

        As it is today, Pelosi and Schumer can not deny the people (or their people…those who hope for change).

        “Get out of my way. You’re blocking progress.”

    4. JohnnyGL

      “She just elected the [most] diverse House of Representatives in history” – maybe Pelosi should take credit for the good weather while she’s at it? Did crop yields go up this year? Claim that, too!

      She had very little impact on the midterms, except, arguably, restraining the ‘blue wave’ to make sure it didn’t bring in too many fire-brand lefties that might cause trouble.

        1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

          OK! Let’s choose the leadership based on how much money they can raise from Big Pharma, Big Prison, Big Fossil Fuel, Big Surveillance, and Big War. Pay no attention to the fact that those beneficent, charitable, and compassionate funders choose to fund those they judge to be most effective at blocking any real efforts at reform:

      1. WheresOurTeddy

        Shhhhhhhhhh…nobody tell Nancy about all the Blue Dogs in purple districts that were helped by running away from the “San Francisco values” Pelosi

        1. drumlin woodchuckles

          Did any of these Blue Puppies get some of their campaign money from the Pelosi Machine? If so, could it be that Pelosi accepts their surface-dismissal of ” San Francisco values” Pelosi because she knows her Catfood Agenda will benefit from their deeper-acceptance of ” Free Trade Treason Agreement values” Pelosi?

    1. WJ

      Same dude caught lying to Congress several years back, no? If that didn’t tarnish his credibility, a question at a public intellectual seminar sure isn’t going to. He’s credible unless and until cable news networks decide he’s not. That’s what we’ve come to.

        1. John k

          Ca brown pelicans’ pop seems to have crashed, at least in Orange County. I once estimated 400 were diving, must have been a pretty big school of fish. Now rarely see more than a couple.

    1. Not From Here

      It’s not as if the land birds would have been eating on the wing crossing the sea. huge energy savings crossing Mediterranean by boat instead of flying more than make up for the one-day slower transit time.

      Video made me think of the emotive prose in Chapter 9 – “Wayfarers All” from Kenneth Grahame’s Wind In The Willows.

    2. Ignacio

      Fun facts about bird migration

      Transoceanic migrants, birds who follow a migration route that crosses an ocean, may spend up to 100 hours or more in the air at a single time until they come to land. In extreme conditions, these birds have been known to land on ships at sea when they are desperate for rest. When they reach land, there are often fallouts of exhausted migrants that all congregate at the first available shelter or food source. Many birding festivals take place at these fallout hotspots during peak migration periods.

    3. Oregoncharles

      They’re resting, and maybe hitching a ride in the right direction. They don’t normally eat while crossing the sea (Mediterranean?), or even land, with some exceptions.

      Several did, though: a sparrow finding a crumb, and the peregrine eating a fellow passenger. I suspect the crews put out food for their passengers; in any case, humans are so sloppy there will be leavings around.

  1. allan

    Whitaker Said to Angrily Demand Website Remove Posts About Patent Firm [WSJ]

    In early 2015, an anonymous comment accusing a Florida company of being a scam was posted on a consumer website called

    Around that time, the publication’s phone rang. The caller said he was Matthew Whitaker—now the acting attorney general—and he was angry, said Ed Magedson, owner of Ripoff Report. Using profanity, Mr. Whitaker demanded the removal of all negative reports about the company, World Patent Marketing Inc., Mr. Magedson said.

    “He threatened me using a lot of foul language,” said Mr. Magedson, who added he had reviewed notes he made at the time. “He threatened to ruin my business if I didn’t remove the reports. He [said he] would have the government shut me down under some homeland security law.” …

    Of course, the WSJ purposely avoids the central question,
    which is: Should an advocate of Christian Sharia law have been using foul language
    to defend a scheme that violated several of the Ten Commandments?
    Oh wait … the Ten Commandments are from the Old Testament … never mind …

    1. Arizona Slim

      My father was scammed by one of those patent marketing companies. So permit me to say that Ripoff Report is performing a valuable public service.

    2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      It was way back in the oppressive 1950’s that no one could use the ‘F’ word on TV.

      Today, we have moved beyond that, and people can wear Bermuda shorts on a plane without being verbally or silently abused by fellow passengers.

      Sometimes, I secretly wish comedians, tragedians or serious people on TV didn’t use foul language, but that’s not life, that’s not real, for ordinary people, much less bulldog lawyers or politicians talking in private.

      1. WheresOurTeddy

        Attire people do or don’t wear on a plane shouldn’t crack your top 10,000 things to care about.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          That’s true, but since we were in the neighborhood of decorum, I thought I mentioned it in passing.

          It’s not a place I go out of my way to visit. In fact, the place sort of ran into me this morning.

  2. Wukchumni

    We’ve had an over century long adversary in the hot war: a sticker from the late 1920’s:

    We must get back to how it was before we interceded on behalf of duff, downed trees and dead snags.

    Can we be frank about our vaunted military?

    They’re not very impressive this century, all they’ve done is spend money like its going out of style, with nothing to show for it, aside from some nearly 8,000 dead GI Joes & Janes, and the usual suspects making bank.

    Its obvious who the real enemy is, right here @ home, not in some far away locale.

    Want me to stand up for our veterans and active duty military, when they get used for patriotic props?

    Have them do something heroic, by clearing out the dead stuff and thinning out our forests, to bring them back to the state of things before we decided to thwart Mother Nature.

    1. Lee

      Jerry Brown was waxing environmentally apocalyptic in a TV interview with Christiane Amanpour yesterday. He is at an age and a stage in his political career when he can speak the unvarnished truth. Rather like Al Gore after he exited the electoral arena. How come politicians improve once they are out of politics? There’s something about the system that stifles the best in people.

      1. Wukchumni

        A good interview with a rare long look at the state…

        Historically, there were very few Native Americans living in SD/OC/LA/SF, as water was iffy.

        And when you delve deep into the past, there are 200+ year droughts, and epic floods that would’ve filled up the Central Valley from Redding to the base of the Grapevine, one vast lake.

        1. Lee

          The ability to transport water from the Sierra and the Colorado river systems, all beginning with ample mountain snow melt is necessary for the millions now living in these low rainfall areas that could previously support much, much smaller populations. And still the California powers that be are pushing for moar groaf. Recent and future water shortages don’t seem to be a factor in their thinking.

          I’ve lived in the SF bay area for all of my three score and ten. My kids and their families are pretty well ensconced with work and social and economic networks (real ones, not ersatz virtual bullshit) but the quality of life is deteriorating and the future here is looking more and more iffy. I’d like to get further away from the overcrowding, the equator, and the Hayward fault, if only we could solve the livelihood problem, not for me because I have a pension, but for younger family members. Relocating on my own is basically unthinkable.

          1. Wukchumni

            In Cadillac Desert, the author figured L.A. had an outer limit of 100,000 in 1900, based upon local water sources.

        2. WheresOurTeddy

          When the Spanish arrived in what is now the Los Angeles basin in the 1500s, there were less than 10,000 natives in the valley.

          Now there’s over 20 million, with about the same amount of water.

          The aliens that discover our ruined civilization will be baffled why – IMMEDIATELY upon mastering the ability to live anywhere due to climate control last century with machines – great migrations people chose to move to some of the most naturally inhospitable places because “weather”

    2. Duke of Prunes

      Or, rather than turning the military into your personal forest rangers, I’ll take a page from what many folks “not from around here” like to say after devastation from major flood or hurricane hit: don’t rebuild in the path of nature? Don’t build on the hurricane coasts. Don’t build in flood plains. Don’t build in the tinder box western forests. There’s always going to be fires (and floods and hurricanes). I think we’re kidding ourselves if we think clearing out the dead stuff is a long term solution – it might work for a few decade or so, but I was always taught that forest require the periodic fire for rejuvenation. You can only hold back Mother Nature for so long…

      I suppose the insurance companies will ultimately decide.

      1. Wukchumni

        Forests and healthy trees are vitally important to cleaning the air, while chamise and other ready to burn low lying living stuff such as what’s found in the Woolsey Fire, eh, not so much.

        The forests will still burn if you clean them up, but not kill them in entirety as is the popular way for it to happen as of late. And you know what comes up after such a devastation?

        Chamise and other lower echelon plants that don’t allow trees to get purchase.

    3. Arizona Slim

      We need a Climate Corps and a Green Force. I’m not too concerned about whether they’re part of the military or civilian-run. We just need ’em.

    4. GS

      Who gives them the money to spend like it’s going out of style? Who elects those people? “We have met the enemy and it is us.” As General Smedley Butler, a two time medal of honor winner said, “War is a racket.”

    5. drumlin woodchuckles

      Actually, the “military” part of our military won the “battle” part of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

      The Civilian Leadership then very carefully and on purpose threw the “victory” part of the wars away and arranged to lose the peace and get a whole new round of battle started. And since that new round of battle was guerilla battle, the military can’t win that.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef


      Are we modern people too obsessed with that?

      Some people walk into an online board, a bar, or any gathering, and think, “I am the smartest poster.”

      Some think, “I am the most knowledgeable.”

      Some: “I am the funniest.”

      Some: “I am the most spiritual.”

      Or “I am the most compassionate.”

      Though I don’t know if a compassionate person, a loving person would bother with the ego trip about being the most or the best of anything.

      But in the world we live, people yearn for high IQ, by design if possible (the way of the future) and seek to avoid low IQ*.

      *Maybe future geniuses will separate them, isolate them in some concentrated places…a dark future indeed.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          IQ – what is that?

          (My brother, who lives with me, asks that. And I think his world is better than mine.)

            1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

              He doesn’t keep me, but does help me see the world more clearly.

              My mother still worries about him, but I tell her not to.

      1. Jeff W

        Some people walk into an online board, a bar, or any gathering…

        Honestly, I was looking for the punchline.

        (Dunno what IQ that indicates.)

    2. JBird4049

      Sorry, the people in those companies are too busy making bank on their innovative uses of human individual eugenics improvement.

      1. pretzelattack

        maybe they will fund anti amazon sites, best i can hope for, and that would only be temporary.
        the elite donors will have their squabbles, but i suspect they stand foursquare against the rabble.

        1. makedoanmend

          “…the elite donors will have their squabbles, but I suspect they stand four square against the rabble…”

          Yep. Amongst themselves they may not always be sure who is in their corner on any given issue but they know who isn’t allowed into the game…democracy be damned…

          Didn’t somebody once say its a club and we aren’t invited?

        2. Roland

          Remember the corollary to what Jay Gould said:

          One half of the elite will always hire us to kill the other half.

          1. cripes

            Kill the other half…of the elite?

            Subject-object confusion or happy accident?

            Works for me either way.

    1. UserFriendly

      Part of free market fundamentalism’s claim to be on the side of the little guy is that some companies use there friends in big government to get special breaks, which is against the free market. They, of course, gloss over that every large company has lobbyists and all of them lobby for special breaks and to favor existing firms by creating very high barriers to entry.

    2. wilroncanada

      Two welfare queens who want to expand their influence griping about another welfare queen who got some of what they want.

  3. Carolinian

    Excellent story on tinderbox Malibu that vectors to this link

    Less well understood in the old days, of course, was the essential dependence of the Santa Monicas’ chamise chaparral, coastal sage scrub and live oak woodland upon this cycle of wildfire. Decades of research (especially at the San Dimas Experimental Forest in the San Gabriels) have given late 20th-century science vivid insights into the complex role of fire in recycling nutrients and ensuring seed germination. Conversely, science has established that it is accumulated growth that determines fire destructiveness. As fire ecologist Richard Minnich has said, “You can send an arsonist to Death Valley and he’ll never be arrested.”

    The article explains that Malibu has always been especially prone to fire due to topography and there’s little that can be done about it. In other words it’s not just a global warming story, and the area never should have been developed in the first place. It was the movie people who demanded this refuge from the teeming hordes of Los Angeles.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Someone from Moorpark, SImi Valley area once told me that the weather was nicer in Thousand Oaks, it was breezy there.

      Come to think of it now, that’s how the Santa Ana winds blow…through there, then Malibu and the ocean.

    2. knowbuddhau

      That’s some good stuff, thanks.

      I have 40something-year old Alan Watts lectures in which the former Sausilito resident complains, at length, about these very same houses.

      Denatured is as denatured does. Suburban developments aren’t built to, eg, align the roofs for best solar efficiency, making each house independent of the grid, or a source, by design. They’re not even built not to be in floodplains or fire terrain. They’re built for profit along property lines.

      Our word & paper world is more “real,” in the sense of materializing the future, determining how materials are to be shaped where and for what purpose, than the real “real” world. There’s our problem.

      This is the society “the Conquest of Nature” builds. And we’re supposed to radically decarbonize and repower in a decade, for best results? Not without renaturing we ain’t.

      The problem, as I see it, is that we long ago thought we removed ourselves from nature, and thus from any natural constraints on growth. We grow as fast and as large as industrially possible. Like building houses where they don’t belong. And then rebuilding.

      Nature is over *there, and we’re over *here, in “civilized society,” right? Such sophistry will not protect us from the return effects of all the externalities we’ve been neglecting all these years.

    3. rd

      In general, I don’t have a problem with the Kanye West-Kim Kardashian private firefighters as this area shouldn’t be highly developed at all and government should play little role in fire protection of a system designed to burn frequently. It should be very low density development with the residents paying the cost of fire protection for their specific homesteads.

      The public fire protection costs should be for high-density, low fire-potential areas like are present in most cities.

      Similarly, hurricane -prone waterfronts and river flood-prone floodplains should largely be public lands, very low density wealthy individuals who can cover their own damage, and limited localities of critical appropriate services (fishermen, farming, tourism, etc.).

      Pretending that the riskiest places on earth have the same propensity for damage as low risk places is insane policy with, or without, global warming and sea level rise.

      If you look at the damage costs, it is generally much more of a function of increased development than increased frequency or intensity of event. Areas that had the same type of disaster (fire, flood, etc.) 50 years ago had much less damage because the density of development was generally 10% of today’s density. If people want to live in these locations with relatively high frequency events (if it is likely to occur within a lifetime, it is a high frequency event), they should pick up the cost of prevention and losses.

  4. Huey

    In other news, I can’t wait until we can finally abort all those disgusting 120 IQ babies. The prevalence of such mentally challenged making up, 90% of the proletariat is the real reason for the massive inequality experienced, of course, as we all know hard work and real talent is justly rewarded. Any who couldn’t get ahead simply didn’t try enough.

    While we’re at it, a way to genetically erase/destroy inferior traits from the gene pool too would be a great move towards social progressivism. What a wonderful world! Screw public benefits, surely these are the advances mankind deserves, if not needs.

    The tv series Incorporated had a lot of good insight, but seriously, it’s hard enough with the availability of techniques like choriamniocentesis for people to decide if they should check for Down’s Syndrome in their fetuses. What do you do if the test is positive, are you really gonna abort it (especially as test is usually at almost 20 weeks)? Just because of Down’s? It’s actually a really hard choice for some. Who am I kidding, most people can’t even afford regular IVF, there’s no way this technique will be somehow made available yo the plebs anyway.

    1. WJ

      Clearly for this fetus IQ engineering project to be fair, the Very Richest white people who use it must be sure that the high IQ selected fetuses also represent a diverse range of ethnicities and sexualities. If all the high IQ babies are white straight males, this is bad. But if there are lots of high IQ Latina bisexuals being engineered by Very Rich white people too, then this is an advance that Very Rich white liberals, indeed the Democratic Party as a whole, can really get behind!

      1. ambrit

        Just look around you some day while out shopping, assuming you are not an Amazon Anchorite, and marvel at how much taller some of the teenagers are today. I couldn’t find any data about how many parents give their children growth hormones. It has to be a non-trivial number though.
        There have been science fictional treatments of this idea. Off the top of my pointy, unengineered, little head I can think of the doctor on Deep Space Nine, and Gattaca, and Heinlein’s book “Friday.” Just to name a few.

        1. Watt4Bob

          Read a report one time, years ago, about a Texas father who queried a doctor about how much human growth hormone he could give his 12 year old son.

          Football is king in Texas, and the guy was uninterested in warnings, just wanted to know the dose.

        2. Oregoncharles

          Here I thought it was the health food – I mostly see very tall people at the Co-op.

          Growth hormone might explain some of the basketball players, though.

          Do they have an oral form now? It had to be injected when my son was taking it (after a transplant). Getting a young teenager to keep up daily injections is hard enough when it’s insulin.

          1. ambrit

            If you tell him or her that these injections are their ticket into the Major Leagues, chances are they will go along.
            Remember the baseball steroids ‘scandals?’ I have known several men who took steroids while playing sports in High School and or University. Several said that without the steroid ‘boost’ they could not have competed with the ‘augmented’ players. Two of them, I remember, were bald in their early thirties
            Those ‘tall’ “people” at the co-op, and just who or what are you all co-opting anyway, are probably the Zeta Reticulans going for their monthly can of ‘Pleiadian Protein Powder.’ Do many of them fly up from Mount Shasta? That would be a tell.

  5. The Rev Kev

    “Hillary Clinton 2020 Rumblings Intensify. God Help Us”

    Ah, I think that I can see the mistake here. She is actually running for the Presidency of Libya in 2020, not the US. GOP strategists crunched the numbers and found that she was more likely to be elected President there than in the US.

    1. rd

      The Democrats are vigorously identifying the people that Trump can be beat so that they can continue to get record campaign donations by running against him.

    2. DonCoyote

      Emma Vigeland is wonderful.

      The “Pied Piper” strategy in the Podesta e-mails was misinterpreted. He was referring to the Koch brothers paying Hillary Clinton to run as the only Democratic candidate a Republican (any Republican) could beat.

      Here is MSNBC, in 2014, begging HRC not to run, followed by a Bill O’Reilly clip correctly predicting she would run and win the Democratic nomination as a corporate Democrat. In 2014.

      HRC’s motto–as long as the Kochs keep paying, I’ll keep running. And when I die Chelsea will run. God Bless America and ka-ching.

    3. NotTimothyGeithner

      Its definitely fashionable to suggest HRC was the only person who could lose to Trump, but given the state of the Democratic politics in recent years, I’m often of the opinion HRC was the strongest possible candidate acceptable to the Democratic elites (obviously, a Sanders style candidacy would be anathema).

      Without the idea that HRC was a secret liberal held back by her husband, her record would have been a problem, and so when the field is considered, who is out there that isn’t a hack? The Team Blue courtiers have desperately tried to find a candidate who would capture that Obama excitement (not being HRC or connected to the decayed Democratic elite and his novelty mattered).

      I see all these bums who fancy themselves in the White House, but they are meeting people in an era where they won’t be able to define themselves before people might look at their records. Name the corporate friendly Democrat, and I just see one cookie cutter loser after another. I don’t think Liz Warren is normally Presidential material, but against the field, she might win 90% of the primary votes.

      1. John k

        First she has to beat Bernie.
        Not a chance unless the dem elites line up behind her in an anybody but Bernie effort, and that won’t happen until all the dem Corp hacks give up. Plus Hillary running will make it difficult for any woman, lots of female dem elites still love her… Liz probably still afraid of the clintons.

      2. Pat

        I will slightly disagree. I agree with you that her supposed opposition for the position sans Sanders were not going to do any better.

        My exception, as much as I hate to admit it, is Biden. Between the irrational Obama love, and the sympathy for his son, I think Biden was as strong a candidate as HRC in 2016. I’m pretty damn sure lots of agreements went down over the years between 2008 and 2013, one of which was probably that Biden would not challenge Clinton. And one thing I will give him, I don’t expect any campaign team he had would have focused more on Arizona than Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

        That time has passed. More problems with student loans, no sympathy for student loans, and a whole lot of people realizing that the Obama administration was not so helpful for them and Biden is yet again creepy Uncle Joe. But in 2008…

        Meanwhile I will remember fondly the O’Malley wave.

        1. NotTimothyGeithner

          Biden wasn’t the co-President, a baller move by HRC. He also doesn’t have much beyond name recognition.

          As for sympathy for his son, which one? The one who agreed to let the banks off who died or the one who was kicked out of the navy? Much like articles about Obama losing his groove, the country wants answers not mindlessness, and a person noted for his racial gaffes and hideous policies isn’t going far.

          1. Pat

            See, I agree with all that.But I also believe that for anyone paying attention in 2016 knew HRC was a disaster, and so was Biden. But as we saw with Clinton, a whole lot of Dems were NOT paying attention.. The real question is whether the media would be as low key about his gaffes as they were hers. Other wise let’s see:

            -Clinton fluffs her resume, most qualified. Biden’s fluffed resume is the equal to hers.
            -Status quo vs Status quo.
            -Not having much beyond name recognition vs an over 40% disapproval rating
            -Ability to raise money – I have to give Clinton the edge, but much of that was based on the inevitability of her campaign and nomination but Biden does okay.
            -First woman vs. dead son who wanted father to help the country…
            -Racial gaffes and hideous policies vs racial gaffes and hideous policies they were the epitome of corporate Dems and pretty equal.
            -Lots of Obama love vs. not interfering in the primary…

            Once again 2016 is not 2018, as much as the Dem elite has fought it the ground has shifted under their feet even more. While I think Biden would have done as well or better than Clinton in 2016, that is not a recommendation for him. Neither Clinton or Biden has a shot, Both might try and even get close to the nomination, but if the Party picks them they will only prove that they don’t care if Trump’s President.

            1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

              Can we just pause a moment and lament the state of our republic.

              Our choice is an unhealthy, mistakenly not incarcerated Wall St Pentagon shill grandmother or else Uncle Joe, King Groper, student debt enslaver, and a candidate better suited to run for Village Idiot.

            2. NotTimothyGeithner

              HRC was beloved, not merely approved of. Biden is not HRC.


              In 2008, HRC received virtually no support from the 30 and under crowd in the primaries and replicated that feat with the 38 and under crowd in 2016. She did a number of things better as she obviously take running for President that seriously in 2008.

              If HRC wasn’t the target of GOP attacks which often were insane, HRC would have gone no where. An elaborate myth existed around HRC and her support was very emotionally based. Biden is a name “very informed” voters like to say because they feel good about being able to recognize the name of a former Vice President.

              HRC’s surrogates used the “Hillary is every woman” routine, largely to avoid discussion of her record. What is Biden to do? How many people have dead sons because of his Iraq War vote? No one is attached to Beau, and since you mentioned it, no one gave a damn about his kids in 2007/2008 in his second failure to place in a single state during the primary season.

              Even in 2016, Bernie had room because HRC was so awful and she enjoyed the “she had to do it as a woman in a man’s world excuse.” Biden has none.

          2. Anonymal

            “racial gaffes”

            I think you mean racism. Thats why Clinton or Biden aren’t great candidates, decades long histories of racism. Then again barely a decade ago the DNC openly welcomed and then mourned KKK members, then in 2016 they ran Clinton, known to have plenty of KKK associates.

            Not sure racism is truly a concern of the DNC.

  6. vidimi

    this is a remarkable find and initial surveys suggest that the impact was some 12000 years ago, which coincides with the great flood that exists in the ancestral memory of peoples worldwide. it’s not hard to imagine how an impact this big into an ice shelf would raise world sea levels immensely overnight. archeologists have long known there was an epic flood at that time, it’s exciting to think this may be what caused it.

    also interesting is whether some scrupulous observer of the sky would have been able to track the meteor/comet before it hit and for how long.

    1. rd

      There were a series of sudden sea level rises during the glacial melt period from about 17,000 to 8,000 years ago. Some were due to ice dams breaking, releasing the massive glacial meltwater lakes that covered much of North America.

      The meteorite could be one more cause of a sudden sea level rise.

      It is possible that the numerous flood mythologies were actually separate events as each one likely flooded a different region exposing those local people to a permanent flood.

      1. vidimi

        indeed, i don’t remember either if there was a supervolcano eruption at some time between 5000 and 15000 BC but, in any case, if this meteor left a nearly 20 mile crater in the Greenland ice shelf around 10000BC, it’s more than likely its effect was worldwide.

      2. ambrit

        There are serious shortcomings with the ice dam hypothesis. The geology of the scablands washed into existence by the flood or floods are consistent with one or two massive floods, not a series of medium floods. An ice dam has physical limits as to how much weight of water it can hold back. There is also the phenomenon of floating ice volumes where such an ice dam would literally float up and allow water to flow out underneath.
        Much more available at the Comet Research Group.

        1. Synapsid

          Hi ambrit.

          I can vouch for three Missoula floods from my own field mapping, one of them our own discovery in 1979. All three are in the northwestern part of the Channeled Scablands, and those floods are younger than the ones that created the Scablands in the southeastern region. There are slackwater deposits, left in tributary canyons as flood waters moved down the main canyons, that total up to 40 in the canyon of the San Poil River a few miles north of its juncture with the Columbia upriver from Grand Coulee Dam. There are similar deposits at Wenatchee, and the Touchet beds down near Wallula Gap formed the same way.

          The last flood cut the Grand Coulee 900 feet deep through the Columbia River Basalt. The waterfall at its southern end retreated upstream about half the length of the Coulee, and Sun Lakes State Park contains the plunge pools it left behind. At that point the waterfall was miles across. The floodwaters had come down the Columbia from Glacial Lake Missoula and were stopped by the Okanogan Lobe of the Cordilleran Ice Sheet, backed up, and spilled over southward, cutting the Coulee. A few miles west is Moses Coulee which contains a terminal moraine of the Okanogan Lobe showing that the coulee is older than the ice advance and thus than the Grand Coulee, and records an earlier flood.

          We found flood gravels at Shanker’s Bend in the Columbia’s canyon thirty-some miles downriver from Grand Coulee Dam. They were foreset beds of coarse gravels containing nothing smaller than a grapefruit and one clast that was more than four feet long–talkin’ big flood here–and they underlie the glacial till deposited by the Okanogan Lobe, and thus predated the ice advance to that far south. And remember, all this is younger than the system of coulees in the southeastern part of the Scablands. Many floods.

          Look for Glacial Lake Missoula and its Humongous Floods, by David Alt. Mountaineers publishes it. It’s a series of road-trip guides with all the background you need. Alt was a geologist, and an excellent one, at the University of Montana.

          1. knowbuddhau

            Wowsers, I never know what I’ll find here. I love this place. Don’t suppose you know anything about the Ice Age deposits around Puget Sound, say North Whidbey area? There’s a 200′ tall shoreline bluff not 5 miles from here, at the base of which is a thick layer of organic deposits. Looks like compressed lake bottom.

            I’m told the Sound was once a lake. I walk along and marvel at the layering and sculpting in the bluff. Also hoping for mass wasting in progress.

            I’ve fished some of the pothole lakes in that area. Now I’ve got a great reason to go to Sun Lakes SP, thank you very much!

            1. Synapsid


              Yes, there was a large lake in Puget Sound. The ice came down from Canada and when it butted up against the Olympic Peninsula drainage out to the Pacific was stopped; all the water draining off the west side of the Cascades and the east side of the Olympics was trapped and the lake (I think it’s called Glacial Lake Russell but don’t quote me) rose until it reached the level of the low point roughly in the west part of Olympia at the south end of the Sound. It overflowed southward into the valley of the Chehalis River and flowed west to the Pacific, leaving the Chehalis in a huge valley–the Chehalis is called an underfit stream as a result–once the ice melted back up north and the glacial lake could drain out into the Pacific.

              Except for the northernmost rocky part, at Deception Pass, all of Whidbey is sediment that dates to the last glacial and before. There’s a gravel quarry just off the N-S highway down the island, on the E side and not that far south of Deception Pass, that contains glacial till if my memory isn’t failing me so what’s below that predates the last ice advance there maybe 16 000 years back. The record is complex, and it isn’t possible (for me anyway) to predict what it will be like even a couple of hundred meters away. At Double Bluff, for instance, the southwest point of the island, is the Double Bluff till which dates back 130 000 years to the preceding glacial.

              It sounds like I’ve never been to the area you mention, but compressed organic deposits might be the Whidbey peat, very dark brown and layered, sometimes with fossil pine cones (lodgepole pine, I think) on some of the bedding planes. That peat dates back to the last interglacial about120 000 years ago; I’ve only seen it on the south coast of the island, east of Double Bluff, and at Bremerton. Fossil pine cones are neat; a neighbor’s 13-year old daughter tried sprouting some but they didn’t cooperate.

              1. The Rev Kev

                Reading your comments, I am just imagining what a book called the Geological History of the United States would be like. I bet a lot of people, in reading it, would have a lot of ah-ha! moments as they understood why some landscapes look they way that they do where they lived.

            2. rd

              Ocean levels were about 400 feet lower for almost 100,000 years during the glaciation. There are complexities of rebounding crust after ice sheet melt, etc. but basically continental shelf areas with water depths of less than 400 feet were generally land for almost 100,000 years.

              So imagine the English Channel as land connecting Britain to mainland Europe, Florida twice its current size, etc.

          2. ambrit

            Greetings and Felicitations Synapsid;
            Oh boy. You’re giving me a new syllabus. I’m going to have to convert another ‘spare’ room into a library soon!
            I really love that “humongous” is a technical term in geology!

        2. rd

          Lake Agassiz and other pre-Great Lakes glacial lakes covered vast areas in the interior of the continent but were not particularly deep – the great clay beds used by farmers from Chicago to upstate NY are the lake bottom remnants. There were also natural rock and soil dams in addition to the ice. There are a series of well-defined beach ridges around the perimeter of the existing Great Lakes (a reason there are so many “Ridge Roads”) indicating that lake levels dropped in steps as different dams ruptured as the drainages moved from down into the Mississippi, out the great outwash channels in upstate New York leading to the Hudson and other rivers, and then eventually out the St. Lawrence River.

          Tens of feet of water suddenly discharging from thousands of square miles is a lot of water.

          The Missoula floods are the western version from a different series of glacial lakes.

    2. knowbuddhau

      There was also the report of a hypothesis, gaining support as we speak, of a radical change in society c. 12Kya. Lambert had it in Water Cooler yesterday.

      It was one of the 25 biggest, an iron meteorite roughly 10 football fields wide. Probably followed by years of abrupt climate changes, likely inexplicable at a sufficient distance to survive.

      Putting 2 & 2 together, this bodes ill. Denatured people already don’t see their role in precipitating catastrophes unfolding even now. Especially ones who are being beaten with all manner of industrial-strength propaganda sticks, and have been for 150+ years now, and counting.

      It’s not like the ones on the other end know “the Truth,” and are beating it out of us. They’re just beating us for dominance, no better than any other ape, and making up stories that make it all seem good enough for the beatings, and dominance, to continue.

      People in general, not knowing that, in building this type of civilization, we also installed a colossal sh!t fan, won’t know where it’s coming from, and they might not believe the scientists about how to turn it off, because of a century and a half of ever so clever propaganda. They’ll just know it’s hitting it more than ever and something’s Got To Be Done.

      Who you gonna call when all hell literally breaks loose and you lose all trust in Mother Nature, AND you’re beaten to derangement into believing it’s all the fault of Others? Big Daddy. See also, Shock Doctrine.

      This bodes ill. We really need to get on with the decarbonizing already.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Up till 4,000 or 5,000 years ago, female gods were worshiped.

        I have read the story of Eden as referring to the take over by male gods or a male god, with their female counterparts driven out from temples or Eden.

        According to your link, something changed 12,000 years ago and lead to men coming to rule. The question then is, who ruled before that? Was it women? Or it both men and women?

        For Marija Gimbutus, it was women.

        Was it always so, (if it was women who ruled before), way back to 200,000, half a million, two million years ago?

        Here, we might look to our closest relatives. Bonobos are well known for their matriarchy and is cited to show ‘something other than patriarchy is possible.’ That implies that patriarchy is more prevalent in nature. Is that so? And were our ancestors more Bonobos like, and not other apes who have alpha males?

  7. Judith

    Wonderful bird video. I wish I could spend my day trying to ID all those birds instead of working. Thanks.

    1. flora

      Another movie about bird migration, from 2003: “Winged Migration.” Wonderful movie, great photography.

  8. The Rev Kev

    “Bolton aide exits White House after high-profile clash with first lady”

    Looks like Mira Ricardel messed with the wrong woman. Didn’t matter that she had John Bolton as a guardian angel, trying to subordinate Melania to herself in Africa was a bridge too far. Melania may cop a lot of flack in some quarters but what Ricardel – and Bolton – forgot was that Melania is a Graduate of the School of Hard Knocks with an Advanced Degree in Putting Obnoxious People in their Place. Good on her.

      1. Elizabeth Burton

        Doesn’t matter. The McResistance is already embracing Ricardel with open arms and tears of sympathy for her suffering at the hands of that awful Trump woman.

  9. rd

    Some CalPERS and other state’s pension plan members worked in jobs where they did not pay FICA taxes for some or all of their career. As a result, many people covered by state or local pension plans don’t have Social Security as a backstop unless the state pension is dramatically reduced or eliminated because of the Windfall Elimination Provision enacted in 1983.

    The public pension problem is likely to be major problem over the next couple of decades as a lot of people who thought they were going to be comfortable may be on the edge of poverty. Both Republican and Democratic congresspeople will be lining up at the Federal trough to plug these holes while bleating about the need for fiscal responsibility. This may become the most bipartisan issue over the next decade with bipartisan groups on opposing sides of the legislation.

    1. taunger

      I’m concerned. My wife joined a union last year, and she had her choice of defined benefit or contribution plans. One can get crashed on the street, the other in the state house. Real Hobson’s choice. I encouraged her to take the defined benefit, as at least there is a change for political organizing to save her benefits, whereas the chances of getting stuck in a market downturn without recompense seem to high.

      1. apberusdisvet

        Really dependent upon where you live. If your state has a massively underfunded pension liability, like Illinois, NY, Ct, or California, then there most likely is less than a decade before there is a tremendous bankruptcy domino effect. It will adversely affect everyone in the state, not just union workers or gov’t employees

        1. rd

          The teachers union pension in NYS (NYSTRS) is approximately 90% funded using the formulas that show Illinois etc. about 50% funded. So it is state by state, locality by locality, union by union for whether or not there are serious funding issues.

          Regardless, people should be saving money on their own either as a supplement or as emergency funding to replace a depleted pension. My spouse is a teacher and we view her pension as a supplement to our 401k/403b savings. Low fee diversified 401k/403b/IRA accounts do well over decades and longer. Even a basic Vanguard three fund portfolio (US stocks, Intl stocks, US bonds) provides a reliable long-term return.

    2. RUKidding

      I am a CalPers contributor and later will be a beneficiary (if there’s any money left, that is). Fortunately where I work, we also contribute to Soc Sec. Both pension plans have their issues, and who knows how long the money will hold out. At least I’ll have more than one to count on as I go into my dotage.

      I also have 401(k) funds (now rolled over into IRAs). Who knows how long that money will hold out, as well, but I’m probably better off than most.

      We all live in precarious times.

  10. rd

    The risk of flooding due to sea level rise is inversely proportional to the state’s belief in climate change and sea level rise.

    Recognition of the threat would doom the real estate industry along the coasts. That would be unacceptable.

      1. rd

        The Netherlands realized they were in an existential crisis for much of the country (not the US condition where only a tiny percentage of the land mass is subject to sea level flooding). so they decided to put all their eggs in one basket and watch it like a hawk. They also have a geology that allows them to do it, unlike southern Florida with very porous unconsolidated limestone.

    1. Wukchumni

      Real estate here in the Sierra foothills in times of the Wukchumni tribe was based not on boundaries, but acorn bearing oak trees.

  11. a different chris

    >Electriq~Global Says Its Water-Based Fuel Can Power Your Car

    Haha anybody here watch the short-lived X-Files spinoff, “The Lone Gunman”??? Or was it “Gunmen”, not sure getting old here. If it was Gunmen then I totally missed the play on words until right this moment.

    1. oliverks

      My BS meter broke reading that article. Everything secret, its results require NDAs, their investors are unknown, even the basis of their technology is unknown. I would say Theranos was open and transparent in comparison to Electriq~Global.

      But hey they have a car that runs on water. What could possibly go wrong!

      P.S. If they really had something, there would be patent filings publish by now.

    1. Eureka Springs

      Admittedly I only scrolled through a few dozen, but I’m laughing at what you call ‘positive comments’. More like a Single Payer meets ZH wood chippers thread.

    2. Lambert Strether

      Jayapal and the Medicare caucus are doing good work, but since Schumer and Pelosi both oppose #MedicareForAll, it’s not “Democrats” in the sense of the entire party who are doing this. An idiotic headline.

  12. Off The Street

    Loved the quote in the Keen link:

    labour without energy is a corpse, capital without energy is a sculpture

  13. The Rev Kev

    “Robots Have a Diversity Problem”

    This wouldn’t be a problem if they made robots look like R2-D2 or C-3PO. By a quick glance you would know that they are robots, colour would not be a factor at all and you would avoid the ‘uncanny valley’ effect that these tech-heads are determined to inflict upon us. Jeez, I’d even settle for Robby the Robot at this stage.

    1. Roger Smith

      Happy Birthday Paulie

      I wonder how domestic homeless people feel about robot diversity? Maybe we could ask some starving children in Yemen what they think. Maybe some opiod addicted Mid-westerners. What world do these authors live in that their thoughts ruminate on this junk? A related article that came up when I read this was “Where do our sex dolls go when we die?” What?? Who’s writing this stuff and why is it getting published?

      1. ambrit

        Why it is getting published is precisely why it is getting published.
        Find the ‘Paymasters’ and work out their interests and you get close.

    1. Carolinian

      Our SC upstate sister city laughingly put in a bid. Those 50,000 employees would have increased their urban population by about a third.

      Don’t know why people would be surprised that Bezos is into vaporware and scams. We’re still waiting for those delivery drones.

  14. flora

    Windows 10 latest 1809 update release still a problem. Steer clear.

    a separate support document for the issue, tagged as KB4471218, Microsoft has provided several workaround scripts.

    However, noted IT pro Susan Bradley is warning her followers to defer installing Windows 10 1809 for as long as possible because Microsoft’s suggested workarounds could cause troubles with business applications.

    “I cannot believe — well, I guess in this era of Microsoft I can believe — that Microsoft would release an update that would impact their customer base like this. Yes, it’s documented, yes there are ‘workarounds’, but there are possibilities that line-of-business applications will not be happy with these solutions given,” wrote Bradley.

    In the past 24 hours Microsoft has also confirmed two more problems with the rereleased 1809. There’s a compatibility issue between the 1809 update and Trend Micro’s OfficeScan and Worry-Free Business Security software.

    1. Amfortas the hippie

      i have come to loathe Bill’s Folly. especially win10.
      The version or whatever that came with my laptop contains a flaw that makes streaming A/V have an audio lag. like watching old godzilla movies with those terrible overdubs.

      I keep turning off the culprit driver, but win10 helpfully turns it right back on,lol.
      apparently, MS knows about this problem, too.
      It’s bad enough that the damned thing still belongs to Bill and fiends, who update it at their whim.
      If I could ever get back into a routine, I’d try ubuntu again… but i’d need a few unencumbered days for that, as it requires tequila drinks with fruit.

      1. Mark Pontin

        It’s bad enough that the damned thing still belongs to Bill and fiends, who update it at their whim.
        If I could ever get back into a routine, I’d try ubuntu again

        Bill’s gone off to other things and MS under CEO Satya Nadella is above all about cloud services i.e. holding hostage you, your data, and all your computer-based doings in order to extract as much of a flow of capital from you as possible.

        Windows 10 is an abomination in that respect. Once Windows 7/XP becomes untenable, I’ll be an ex-MS user.

      2. Unna

        This is why I hold on to Win 7 Pro. I’ve never heard anyone say anything good about Win 10 except some smiling enthusiastic young “kid” in a computer store once. I look at this blog every so often and they’re talking about 1809. What I don’t understand is why, except for Linux, there’s nothing else out there but Apple (no) Cromebook (spyware? so never). My question: where are the Russians, the Chinese, and all those smart computer kids from Eastern Europe when we need them?

      3. Unna

        Have you tried the latest Linux Mint? I’ve got it on a USB and like it. Whenever, somewhere in the dark future if ever, Win 7 becomes unmanageable, my current plan is to go to Mint. I really like this version of Mint. Very easy to use and my 10 year old HP printer was immediately recognized by it and worked. Also I was surprised to find that I could, from the Mint desktop (is that the word?) directly access all my music and files residing on my hard drive.

        But maybe I should also load up a USB with the latest version of Ubuntu and try it out also. Loading these things on a USB is quite painless, I’ve found, so the alcohol bill should still be manageable. Actually downloading Linux on a computer hard drive and/or partitioning the drive is still five bridges too far for me.

        1. Antifa

          You will find that installing Ubuntu on any computer is as easy as getting candy from a vending machine — the install does itself, including drive partitions.

          Children do this on a daily basis.

          1. Unna

            In all seriousness, Linux has been making things easier, I’ve noticed, so maybe there’s hope for me yet. And I’m getting the impression that Windows MS is rapidly going down hill, so doing this is most likely going to become a reality sometime in the future. Thanks again, Antifa.

          2. Amfortas the hippie

            on the phone with Krishna, right now.
            about the audio sync problem for streaming.
            he regrets to inform me that i cannot turn off automatic updates.
            I allowed him to do something called remote access,lol…because why not!?
            he jiggered the same things i had jiggered.
            But he apparently did it right…for now.

            when i tried ubuntu, i couldn’t get it to work.
            It may have been a bad download or something.
            i’m resolved to try again next week.
            as far as children being capable of these feats…modify that to “children who have grown up plugged in to these devices”.
            I had a commodore64 when I was a kid…learned some basic, but quickly got bored with BBS and all that, and went outside with a book instead.
            I knew a few other kids who were into computers…the first macintosh PC’s were all the rage.
            but I never caught the bug.
            I have been savvy enough to remain unvirused since 1998…and only had problems with any of the windows OS when I allowed MS to do updates.
            turning that off is one of the very first things i do when i procure a new machine.
            I study the various patches and things, and only update what I surmise is essential(i don’t need a korean font, or an updated robot girl(cortana))
            it burns my grits to be forced into letting MS do things to this box without even a by your leave.
            and the million do-dads contained in this box that are forever phoning home is another peeve…we have limited bandwidth, way out here, and every little bit that’s used to report back to the mothership is a little bit that we can’t use.
            someone linked a fix for that problem a couple of weeks ago on NC, but I couldn’t figure out how to do it.

            a related thing: there used to be 2 people who fixed computers out this way…now there’s one, and she is both very busy, and prone to turning on every jot and tittle of automata there is. One might think that with the preponderance of luddite older folks out here, there would be more of a geek squad presence.
            is it worth encouraging one of my boys to pursue this, instead of mowing yards?

      1. Katniss Everdeen

        Yikes! “A systematic biblical theology of economic freedom” must be econo-speak for totally missing the point.

        1. todde

          when Jesus drove the money changers out of the temple it was because they were violating the Laws of the Market, not Dog.

            1. todde

              there’s not a place in the deepest pits of Hell bad enough for short sellers, according to Pope Musk, Son of the Market God.

      2. ewmayer

        Jeebus, hard to believe The Hill published an op-ed by this so-called economic expert. Any neolib stick to beat a leftist dog with, eh? Maybe next they’ll run an op-ed by the hero of yesterday’s Links comments, economic forecaster, convicted scammer and climate change denier Martin Armstrong, explaining why M4A can’t possibly work because it ignores his Pi-wave theory of economics.

  15. edmondo

    Ford and Walmart to test driverless car deliveries

    Does that mean I have to send my robot out to the driverless car to collect my order?

    1. knowbuddhau

      Oh not at all, your robot refrigerator will order for you, your account will automatically be debited, then your robot robot will be alerted by the robot car, and after putting away your groceries, or just dropping them on the floor while going through shelving motions in empty space, it will bring you a beer, or at least push a cylinder at you, hopefully not into the back of your head this time, while you watch a queue of videos curated just for you. Provided all of that is working all at once.

      What a life.

  16. Tom Doak

    The conclusion of the article about insurance-company-hired private firefighters was this quote from an academic:

    “Are the present examples (Kanye West et al.) the thin end of a wedge that will lead to the wealthy buying better services in all these realms: education, policing, healthcare, firefighting?” Bailey wondered. “Or are we already a long way down this path?”

    Hahahahahahaha [or actually it should be tears]

    Are academics really this insulated from the people who pay for their endowed chairs? Imagine if the wealthy were able to buy better education, private security, and better healthcare! Oh, wait …

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      The very wealthy buy colleges, instead of education, and hospitals instead of healthcare insurance.

      As for fire fighting, money is to be made for young people starting fire-fighting drone businesses.

      “I can send 5,000 fire-retardant dropping Chinese-made Flying Pigeon (best in the world) drones to your 10,000 sq. mansion, every 15 minutes. Your neighbors’ hovels may burn, but your palace will be OK. By the way, do you want extra jet-packs?”

    2. RUKidding

      Imagine if the wealthy were able to buy better education, private security, and better healthcare! Oh, wait …

      As well as private PD/army (in the guise of “security” personnel), private air transport, private roads, private water, their own private islands, etc, etc….

      We all get the drift. Guess the person who wrote that article lives under a rock or something??

  17. Tom Doak

    The most concerning article of the day to me is Benjamin Wittes’ tweet about the “Checks and Balances” group.

    Yes, what could we need more than turning over the checks and balances protected in the Constitution to an unelected group of Federalist Society lawyers? They will certainly be the ones to protect us from our elected officials!

    To complete the circle they would just have to make their decisions classified like the FISA Court, or those justice-fighters who tell Facebook and Google whose accounts to censor because they might be linked to the Russians.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      For this Fed, does a stock market bubble cause the CPI/PPI to go up or not? And do they fight that?

      If so, this Fed is different than those in the last few decades.

    2. cnchal

      “We’re in a situation right now that the Fed will have to look at asset prices before they look at economic activity,” he said. “It’s a difficult position.”

      Effect comes before cause according to Ray.

      . . . Through Wednesday, the S&P 500 SPX, +0.01% was down 7.3% since the end of the third quarter, leaving it with a 1.1% year-to-date gain.

      That’s the problem with gluttons. Even when they get moar, there is never enough and is an egregious injustice to them. Peasants be damned.

    1. Wukchumni

      Another good wildfire story (…except for the resulting smoke that gives us a view of any day in smog-laden Los Angeles in the late 60’s…)

      Rain and/or snow is predicted later next week, which might put paid to Prometheus.

      The Eden Fire continues to grow and is now 343 acres as mapped via the parks’ helicopter. Fire has slowed its progress in the Eden Creek drainage on the western edge of the fire. Fire however has established itself on the east side of the eastern branch of Eden Creek drainage. One spot fire was observed on the east flank approximately 200 feet off the main fire and burning actively. Fire does not appear to be moving up-slope (south) towards Homers Nose.

      Continued positive fire behavior is occurring with consumption of brush and downed logs. Some standing dead trees, called snags, may have been the source of some spotting. Numerous snags are present in the area from tree mortality and the lack of modern fire history. The parks will continue to monitor the fire via helicopter while scouting for natural barriers along the rocky ridge (Homer’s Nose) to the south. Additionally the parks will actively track any new growth downhill toward the Kaweah drainage.

      “The parks take air quality concerns very seriously,” said Sequoia National Park Fire Management Officer Kelly Singer. “However, as this fire burns in designated wilderness, taking valuable firefighting resources away from the larger more dangerous fires in California to suppress this ecologically beneficial fire would be a mistake.”

    2. marieann

      Thank you, this is a heart warming story. I have been following the news and shedding many tears.

      I haven’t noticed any mention of the red cross and disaster relief agencies or have I just missed that.The fella who saved the horse and all the people involved could sure use some help.

      When Fort MacMurray burned a couple of years ago there were stories and ways to donate all over the news…at least my news feeds. We were even able to donate our store points to charities involved.

      We also donated to the Edmonton Humane society as they were taking in the animals of the evacuees who were in shelters.

      1. Annieb

        Jeffrey Hill does have a go fund me page for his family. Sorry I can’t link it. But the heading on his go fund me page says Family home lost to Camp Fire.

  18. allan

    Republicans Walters and Kim adopt Trump tactic of charging vote fraud with no evidence of wrongdoing [LA Times]

    Two Orange County Republicans facing the prospect of defeat in the Nov. 6 congressional election as final ballots are counted have adopted President Trump’s tactic of making baseless allegations of vote fraud.

    Neither GOP Rep. Mimi Walters nor Republican candidate Young Kim has produced evidence to back up their charges that Democrats are trying to steal the election. County registrars of voters supervising the ballot counts said they knew of no one doing anything that would compromise the election’s integrity.

    Both Republicans leveled the accusations after they steadily lost ground in the continuing tabulation of tens of thousands of ballots. Walters finished ahead on election night, but has fallen 3,797 votes behind Democrat Katie Porter. Kim is clinging to a 122-vote lead over Democrat Gil Cisneros. …

    Scholars who track the rise and fall of democracies around the globe are also alarmed. Public trust in the validity of free elections is a pillar of democracy, they say, and a political party’s systematic attacks on that faith can be corrosive. …

    In California elections, it’s a firmly established pattern that the votes counted last almost always favor Democrats. The growing dominance of mail ballots has made it more pronounced. The most reliably Republican voters — a shrinking share of the state’s electorate — tend to be older white homeowners who send in their ballots before most other Californians do. …

    Kim, Walters and their enablers in the RWNM couldn’t care less about how corrosive their sour grapes will be.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      There is (been a couple of years since the last visit, hope it’s not ‘was’) a good Russian place in Costa Mesa/Irvine area of Orange County.

      That is, there are Russians there. So, there, according to Russiagaters, we have to investigate.

  19. How is it legal

    Re: Save Us, Al Gore [Another Florida recount prompts appreciation of a man nothing like Donald Trump.]

    Excuse me?

    Time and Donald Trump do interesting things to a man.

    They make Al Gore glitter.

    It’s almost impossible not to be thinking of Gore this week, with the words “Florida” and “recount” so prominent in the news, and it’s hard not to credit him with virtues absent in Trump and increasingly rare in politics these days.

    Grace in defeat, for one. For another: a commitment to democracy greater than a concern for self.

    Oh my. The New York Times needs an Op-Ed Glossary, so they can more clearly define that “US” word. The Al Gore which always comes to my mind is well illustrated by his long time friendship with Senator Feinstein’s exceedingly cunning, Robber Baron Husband, Dick – as noted in this long, and meaty, February 2010 piece, by Will Parrish, Richard Blum: The Man Behind California’s “Developing Economy”

    On April 17, 2009, with the edifice of the global economy rotting under an architecture of monumen­tal greed, war deficits, and official hubris, the Univer­sity of California, Berkeley conducted a ground­breaking ceremony for its Richard C. Blum Center for Developing Economies. Before a throng of students, faculty, staff, and PR specialists affiliated with the Center’s new multi-UC campus “Global Poverty & Practice” program, the Blum Center’s namesake was joined on stage by one of the many political heavy­weights he counts among his business partners, Al Gore. The former Vice President praised Blum as a long-time friend and cited the new institute as a key to solving the interlocking problems of global poverty and global climate change, two of the many vexing boogeymen threatening to destabilize the profit-making order.

    To paraphrase Upton Sinclair, who published a book on the general subject in 1921, some of the greatest sociopaths in this country’s history have affixed their names to university buildings in an effort to burnish their reputations.

    Richard Blum is a San Francisco-based finance capi­talist presiding over a business empire that is, to say the least, expansive. Hedge funds? Blum owns one outright and wields a significant share of various oth­ers. Real estate? His primary investment vehicle, the $7 billion Blum Capital Partners, owns the largest real estate brokerage firm on the planet, CB Richard Ellis, of which Blum is chairman of the board. Construc­tion? Until public scandal prompted him to sell off his holdings, Blum was a majority partner in a construc­tion and engineering company that did billions in business with the US military among other govern­ment clients. Education? Try being the resident Alpha Regent of the largest public university system in the world, the University of California, while also being a primary owner of the world’s second-largest for-profit education firm, Career Education Corporation.

    Large land-holding firms? Digital media company [Current TV – How is it legal] of which Al Gore serves as frontman? Health industry corporation fighting to undermine the expansion of public health care? Border-town maquiladora that build weapons components for the Department of Defense? Check, check, check, and check.

    The piece should be made required reading in all California public schools.

    1. ewmayer

      PropOrNot – the gift that keeps on taking! The catastrophic EU link-tax legislation also get a dishonorable mention.

  20. RMO

    “She just elected the [most] diverse House of Representatives in history” Nancy Pelosi elects the members of Congress? It seems that all these years I’ve been woefully misinformed about how U.S. elections work. At least, being a Canadian citizen I haven’t wasted my time voting but I feel sorry for all of you who have been dutifully making your ways to the voting booths every couple of years!

  21. Big Tap

    In the antidote the cat looks like a photo a calendar company would use above the month of May or Spring where you live to represent the season.

  22. The Rev Kev

    “Republicans Used a Bill About Wolves to Avoid a Vote on Yemen War”

    Why is it that so many Republicans seem to have a pathological hatred of wolves?

  23. knowbuddhau

    Steve Keen’s new book doesn’t disappoint, and I’ve only gotten as far as the Twitter stream. I was fearing/hoping this would be some mind-blowing stuff. Not long ago, I mocked a report of economists “updating” their theories, doubting they had even looked at quantum physics. And now this.

    Thank you, Steve Keen, thank you, NC.

    Paul Jonker-Hoffrén
    ‏ @ArjenPolku
    Nov 15

    Indeed. But that applies to consumers too, to some extent? And for many self-employed workers too. Fascinating view of labour – have we diverged from biological behaviour in this?
    1 reply . 0 retweets 0 likes

    Steve Keen
    ‏ @ProfSteveKeen
    Nov 15

    100% to consumers; the divergence is that most no longer need to do actual work to consume

    Sounds like what I’ve been saying: Denatured is as denatured does.

    But I confess to a reading disorder: most economics writing puts me to sleep. I mean literally, in minutes. And I’ve heard Keen’s writing is especially technical.

    I don’t learn that type of material by reading, but I can I learn it by watching things move. Fat chance of a documentary on this though, amirite?

    This is why some of us rely so heavily on others of us.

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