Links 6/26/19

Biodiversity helps coral reefs thrive – and could be part of strategies to save them The Conversation

‘Climate apartheid’ between rich and poor looms, UN expert warns BBC

The Sameness of Cass Sunstein New Republic

How a radical legal ideology gave rise to economic inequality in the US Scroll

Inslee Climate Plan Includes Prosecuting Fossil Fuel Producers Climate Liability News

What’s wrong with modern buildings? Everything, including Upfront Carbon Emissions Treehugger

‘Hell is coming’: Western Europe braces for unprecedented heatwave that could turn deadly Business Insider

Class Warfare

Bernie to Student Loan Sharks: Drop Dead Jacobin

Sanders and Omar’s Plan Would Wipe Out Every Outstanding Student Loan TruthOut

Two-thirds of American employees regret their college degrees CBS

Group of ultra-rich Americans calls for wealth tax FT

Deadly day for workers refocuses spotlight on industry safety progress Waste Dive


The Jobs where liars excel BBC

German regulator says it discovered new illegal software on Daimler diesels Ars Technica

Imperial Collapse Watch

Trump Keeps Talking About the Last Military Standoff With Iran — Here’s What Really Happened ProPublica

PATRICK LAWRENCE: Accelerating Imperial Decline Consortium News

DO GENERALS MATTER? War on the Rocks

North Korea

Majority Of U.S. Citizens Would Approve Preventive Nuclear Strike On North Korea Moon of Alabama

Survey: Americans Have Remarkably Ignorant Attitude Toward Nukes And North Korea Caitlin Johnstone

US pressure on Seoul over Huawei taps into fears of North Korea SCMP


American Tech Companies Find Ways Around Huawei Ban WSJ

US business leaders issue health and safety alert over trade war FT


The Old Japan Disaster Horror Story Counterpunch. Dean Baker.


Bernie Sanders faces a new kind of threat in Elizabeth Warren Stamford Advocate

Once the poorest senator, ‘Middle Class Joe’ Biden has reaped millions in income since leaving the vice presidency WaPo

With Puerto Rico Still Waiting on Approved Emergency Food Aid, Sanders Condemns Trump for ‘Holding Funds in Red Tape Limbo’ Common Dreams

Joe Biden is contractually obligated to receive angel hair pomodoro at every paid speech The Week


Brexit: as good as it gets

Boris Johnson’s premiership could be an ‘opportunity for disaster’, warns ex-civil service chief Independent


Early Monsoon Underwhelms, Rainfall Deficit at 37%, Sowing Down 14% The Wire. Worrying, as about half of India is currently suffering from drought.

What is behind the tensions in US-India relations? FT

For Chennai, ‘Unless It Rains, Things Are Not Going to Be Normal’ The Wire

Bullet Train Project to Cost Maharashtra 54,000 Mangrove Trees The Wire


Arms Dealers and Lobbyists Get Rich as Yemen Burns American Conservative

Kushner: Arab Peace Initiative no basis for Israel-Palestine deal Al Jazeera

Trump threatens ‘obliteration,’ Iran calls White House ‘mentally retarded’ Reuters



Health Care

The maddening saga of how an Alzheimer’s ‘cabal’ thwarted progress toward a cure for decades Stat

We Can Predict Where Measles Will Happen. Why Don’t We? FiveThirtyEight

Trump Transition

The Night Donald Trump Became President American Conservative

US wraps up hearings on plan to hit all Chinese goods with tariffs as trade war nears first anniversary SCMP

Emulating the CIA, New Rule Would Let Trump’s EPA Disregard FOIA Requests With Near Impunity Common Dreams

Dems threaten to block defense bill absent Iran debate Politico

Robert Mueller to testify publicly before House committees on July 17 NBC

Antidote du Jour:

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


  1. Steve H.

    > DO GENERALS MATTER? War on the Rocks

    H. Stephen Glenn had a point about the Covey methodology for ‘The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People’. Rather than looking at ‘winning’ organizations, for whom success was often unique and situational, it is more effective to look at those which failed, which vastly outnumber those that succeed.

    As he said, we talk about ‘rehabilitating’ people who were never ‘habilitated’ in the first place. And that most people don’t know what ‘habilitate’ means anyway.

    Likewise the Great Captain theory of military victory. When I was young, Alexander the Great fascinated me, charging the city walls by himself and then the men followed. Later I read ‘Alexander the Great and the Logistics of the Macedonian Army’ and my view was forever changed.

    1. The Rev Kev

      Come to think of it, some of the more interesting battles of the past have been defensive battles – Thermopylae, Waterloo, Little Round Top (and Gettysburg too for that matter), Rorke’s Drift, etc. Offensive battles only really get interesting when the odds are stacked against the attackers such as the WW1 charge at Bersheeba – the last great cavalry charge.

      1. eg

        Often because one side managed to arrange to be attacked on grounds or under circumstances that were not ideal for the opponent.

    2. Jeremy Grimm

      I haven’t read “Alexander the Great and the Logistics of the Macedonian Army” so I can only guess what you learned from it to change your view of Alexander the Great. Best guess — it had something to do with ‘logistics’?

        1. Jeremy Grimm

          Just for grins I’ll toss this thought out — the US Army, and I’ll assume the other services also, have excellent logistics support which provides and maintains reasonably adequate weapons for the Warfighter. How do our generals rate overall?

      1. The Rev Kev

        That might partly refer to the saying that with the military, dilettantes study tactics, amateurs study strategy while professionals study logistics.

        1. VietnamVet

          This is the Achilles heel of the US Army. Logistics and rear base security has been privatized. If not paid, no supplies or security. The USA got out and back into Iraq OK. Mainly because it installed a Shiite government and this was in their national interest. In Afghanistan the puppet government will be unable to provide security for the withdrawal. If a deal isn’t made with the Taliban, the last survivors out, if any, will be military contractors who couldn’t get a seat on the Army’s evacuation flights.

    3. Procopius

      I’m not sure if I’ve read that one. I recently read an article on Alexander’s attention to logistics in the way he conducted his campaign, initially capturing cities along the coast to provide ports and harbors, and then following rivers or trade routes so his troops would have sufficient water. I read another really detailed analysis of water sources that made a plausible argument for where a battle in Roman occupied Britain probably took place. Military commanders in those days really had to think about such things. The troops could only carry about three days rations, supplemented by whatever they could scrounge from the countryside they were passing through We never hear details. Or rarely — I vaguely remember one of the things that made Napoleon’s armies so effective was an improved system of depots and ovens to bake bread. It’s only the last five or six years I’ve come to realize how logistics allowed the Spanish conquistadores to continue fighting when the Aztec or Inca warriors had to go back and plant their farms or their families would starve to death. Same with the European (mostly British) invaders to the north; they had developed methods to supply armies while most of their people tilled the land, although even then armies had to restrict operations during the winter months. Of course the Indians were farmers, but they had not had the history of large scale war the Europeans had so they had not developed the systems of storage and transport.

      1. Steve H.

        >The troops could only carry about three days rations, supplemented by whatever they could scrounge from the countryside they were passing through

        iirc, for a mule it’s seven days, so to make a ten day desert crossing requires several trips to stock a depot three days out.

        The naval component of his campaigns is what surprised me, I had assumed they just lived off the land. Capturing ports was critical.

  2. dearieme

    Western Europe braces for unprecedented heatwave that could turn deadly

    Happily in my part of Western Europe the local forecast is that we are in for perhaps ten hours – yes, a whole ten – of uncomfortably hot weather. We normally get that sort of thing in July, so clearly getting it at the end of June is unprecedented: or, at least, unprecedented since the last time.

    Of course, the forecast could prove wrong. They often do.

    1. Wukchumni

      A cave, catacomb, or cavorting in a deep cellar is your best bet to beat the heat naturally when considering separating yourself from the Hades and Hades not.

      1. bruce

        About 60-70 years from now, the remnants of humanity will subsist in underground arcologies, and surface travel among them will be fraught with peril. Teenage lovers will still try to bridge those gaps in Mad Max-style vehicles, with varying degrees of success.

        1. Procopius

          That’s what I tried to tell my cousin, a really smart economist. She pooh-poohed the idea. I framed it as similar to Isaac Asimov’s “Caves of Steel,” or the imperial capital of Trantor. Not many are going to be able to survive that way, but eventually their numbers will be replaced, unless the effort fails.

    2. Clive

      It’s easy to scoff. But dangerously complacent. U.K. mortality rates increase once daytime maxima are above 25 Centigrade (around 77 Fahrenheit) which would indeed have your average Florida resident wondering why anyone would be commenting. When I visited Baton Rouge, I suspect they’d have resorted to putting on a sweater. The problem is not the absolute temperature, it is the deviation from the norm.

      My grandmother-in-law died a few months after the “killer” heatwave in 2003. Although she had some preexisting health issues, they weren’t anything an 80-ish year old would not be too bothered about. I visited every week to ten days and saw her visibly struggling to cope. She lived in a retirement bungalow, so the heat soak from the roof void above was unshielded by any upper story. Her living/dining area faced south with a large picture window. She did her best to keep it shielded with drapes but the effect was negligible. Despite my advice, she insisted on opening the windows in the daytime, rather than follow the best practice and only do this when the worst heat of the day had passed. I fought with her to let me get an air conditioner installed, at least in one room, I would have happily paid for this. But being of that generation, she was determined to sweat it out. She was hospitalised in early November and never left, apart from in a box.

      I’m healthy and as fit as it’s possible to be considering middle age is upon me. I just did my weekly sojourn (walking) the mile and a half to the big supermarket in town, a largely level journey with a few modest inclines. I walked there okay, the temperature when I left was 21 Centigrade (low 70’s Fahrenheit) but when I got back to the house with two light bags of groceries it was 23 Centigrade but 80% RH giving a deeply uncomfortable 19 degree dewpoint. I’d sweated through my t-shirt and gulped down three glasses of water. I was slightly light headed so definitely dehydrated. I feel okay now after a half hour’s sit down.

      No way am I going outside again (temperatures will hit the mid-twenties Centigrade (high seventies or low eighties Fahrenheit)) here in the far south east of England but the humidity will stick in the 70-80% range. Doing anything strenuous in that will not have you feeling great (if you’re healthy) and will put your respiratory system under strain if you’re not.

      1. Lee

        Being a San Francisco bay area weather wimp descended from generations of coastal lowlanders, I share your discomfort. Anything outside the temperature range of 55 to 75 degrees Fahrenheit is simply unacceptable. The increasing frequency of unseasonable heat waves here have me wondering if I should move up the coast at least a few hundred miles further from the equator.

      2. dearieme

        I too hate hot, humid weather. What I am mocking is the unlikely notion that this is unprecedented.

        I don’t know about the Continent but there’s a useful English temperature record going back to the 17th century. It shows that virtually nothing that’s described as unprecedented in England actually is.

        ‘The Central England Temperature (CET) record is a meteorological dataset originally published by Professor Gordon Manley in 1953 … The monthly mean surface air temperatures, for the Midlands region of England, are given (in degrees Celsius) from the year 1659 to the present.

        This record represents the longest series of monthly temperature observations in existence. … It is monthly from 1659, and a daily version has been produced from 1772.’

        1. Mac na Michomhairle

          You don’t quote evidence from the series supporting the implication that these kinds of heat/humidity re-occur with any regularity.

          Is the series mentioned based on tree rings?

          1. dearieme

            As the quotation said “This record represents the longest series of monthly temperature observations”. Observations not inferences.

            1. Alfred

              I found these posts to be quite interesting. I too, wished that you had posted a link to the dataset. It took be a good bit of googling to find this link to a visualization of “Mean Central England Annual Temperature Anomalies…”,


              which does include a link for downloading the datasets (I noted the plural, but did not attempt a download). I’m not qualified to interpret the graphic. My inexpert eyes can only register what seem to have been mostly negative anomalies up to around 1925, and mostly positive ones after that. Google turns up a lot of evidence that people are paying attention to this thing, perhaps not always for purely scientific reasons, so thanks again for signaling it. By the way, the linked webpage includes the fundamental bibliographic references to the underlying research.

      3. John Zelnicker

        June 26, 2019 at 9:05 am

        Quite a contrast with the local weather here in Mobile, Alabama. Temperatures are in the lower 90’s (Fahrenheit) with a relative humidity in the high 80’s to 90’s so the heat index (what it feels like) is about 103.

        This is not a heatwave, it’s the normal temperature for this time of year and will continue well into September. Fortunately, virtually everything is air conditioned.

        A three mile sojourn is absolutely not on anybody’s agenda in this weather.

        1. Wukchumni

          Humordor-where the Columbian Cartels hang out, tried to kill me on numerous occasions when on location there at the wrong time of year which is most of it. Just walking a block left me in a lather, i’d imagine my SoCal soul would be all that was left of me aside from a pile of sweaty clothes if I was to chance a mile walk to the mall?

        2. Clive

          That’s a very valid point. People who live where hot weather is expected know what to do — and what not to do. I never thought at all, silly me, I should vary my routine. A nice walk in a typical English summer’s day in June, let’s say 70F, 50%RH, is a pleasure. I look forward to it. Not expecting anything else, there’s no reason to do anything different. But as you say, no-one in Alabama is nuts enough to carry 20lbs of groceries at the end of a 3 mile walk, at midday. In full sun.

          Climate change will happen faster than people will adjust their behaviour. I doubt it will be consequence-free.

          1. Synoia

            Mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the Midday sun – Noel Coward

            In tropical climes there are certain times of day
            When all the citizens retire to tear their clothes off and perspire.
            It’s one of the rules that the greatest fools obey,
            Because the sun is much too sultry
            And one must avoid its ultry-violet ray.
            The natives grieve when the white men leave their huts,
            Because they’re obviously, definitely nuts!

            Mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun,
            The Japanese don´t care to, the Chinese wouldn´t dare to,
            Hindus and Argentines sleep firmly from twelve to one
            But Englishmen detest-a siesta.
            In the Philippines they have lovely screens to protect you from the glare.
            In the Malay States, there are hats like plates which the Britishers won’t wear.
            At twelve noon the natives swoon and no further work is done,
            But mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun.

            It’s such a surprise for the Eastern eyes to see,
            that though the English are effete, they’re quite impervious to heat,
            When the white man rides every native hides in glee,
            Because the simple creatures hope he will impale his solar topee on a tree.
            It seems such a shame when the English claim the earth,
            They give rise to such hilarity and mirth.
            Ha ha ha ha hoo hoo hoo hoo hee hee hee hee ……

            Mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun.
            The toughest Burmese bandit can never understand it.
            In Rangoon the heat of noon is just what the natives shun,
            They put their Scotch or Rye down, and lie down.
            In a jungle town where the sun beats down to the rage of man and beast
            The English garb of the English sahib merely gets a bit more creased.
            In Bangkok at twelve o’clock they foam at the mouth and run,
            But mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun.

            Mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun.
            The smallest Malay rabbit deplores this foolish habit.
            In Hong Kong they strike a gong and fire off a noonday gun,
            To reprimand each inmate who’s in late.
            In the mangrove swamps where the python romps
            there is peace from twelve till two.
            Even caribous lie around and snooze, for there’s nothing else to do.
            In Bengal to move at all is seldom ever done,
            But mad dogs and Englishmen go out in the midday sun.

          2. Synoia

            I was a child in the Tropics, with heat and high humidity.
            We arrived at School for lessons to start at 8 am, and left at 12 noon.
            Lunch at 1 pm.
            After lunch we “rested” until 3pm
            Then were active till 10 pm.

            And then was sent to School in the UK
            Lesson started at 9 am
            Lunch at 1 pm
            Rest after lunch till 2 pm
            The went out and to Soccer or Rugby, in thick clothes.

            I believed the English in the UK insane to go outside and run about so early in the day…..and said so, which was not received well, as my opinion was the outlier.

        3. ambrit

          Mr. Zelnicker; we here somewhat inland of you all have about the same experience. Middle nineties F during the day and low seventies F at night. Humidity varies a bit more than at the coast though. We’ll also have seventy and eighty percent humidity during the day. The heat index, (what Clive mentions as the ‘dew point’ measure?) (I’ll have to look that one up) is up over a hundred degrees F about every day now.
          I too have an occasional three mile or so walk to a local market. I carry the goods in a surplus army mid-sized backpack. (Those things were designed for easy carrying thankfully.) It takes me a lot longer with the stops for water and a short sit down.
          As for the air conditioning, I worry about when ‘Rolling Blackouts’ become the norm for America. No matter what I read about the subject, I get the feeling that there is going to be a substantial gap time between the cessation of intensive fossil fuel use and the full roll out of “green” fuel sources. Indeed, I worry that there will never be a full replication in the future of the present age’s high per capita energy usage. If the “Market Economy” is still the prevailing Shibboleth, expect the majority of the social costs and concomitant pain to be borne by the ‘lower orders.’

          1. Clive

            Yes, I was trying to shun using the “Humisery index” — they changed its name to the Heat-Humidity Index — as neither is regarded as especially scientific. But nevertheless, 80F @ 40-50% RH (a “dewpoint” of maybe 65F) is very tolerable, 80F @ 80+% RH (dewpoint into the mid 70’s) is horrid.

            And I should have, like you sensibly do, paced myself and taken breaks to get some fluids in.

            1. ambrit

              This is an interesting, and appropriate subject for those of us living in the Tropics and Semi Tropics. Depletion of body salts due to sweating is a real problem. Sadly, the commercial solutions for this problem are generally heavily dosed with sugars as well as essential minerals and salts. So, as I have noticed in myself, a “sugar high” will often result from ingestion of said drinks. (Around here, we are talking about: Gatoraide, Poweraid, and a variety of powdered varieties to be mixed with one’s bottle of water.)
              I have an old World Cup Germany Red England cap (found in a local thrift shop, no less,) that is now crusted with white salt deposits.
              A better method of figuring stress dangers is a good idea since, as you note, the “Heat Index” is a slippery beastie.
              Body type also plays a big part in this. I start sweating within minutes of instigating exercise, at almost any temperature and humidity. Phyllis, who is of Dutch and Italian (Lombard) ancestry, has a much higher tolerance to heat and humidity stresses. She has to work at building up a sweat.
              Oh well. We humans have survived so far, supposedly, from being able to adapt to environmental variations. Civilization? I don’t know.

              1. Wukchumni

                One time in the midst of doing too much on a long backpack, I got dehydrated bad, and luckily a friend had a packet of oral rehydration salts, and it really helped. Something I always carry with me in the usually sunny Sierra summer.

          2. Oregoncharles

            “As for the air conditioning, I worry about when ‘Rolling Blackouts’ become the norm for America. No matter what I read about the subject, I get the feeling that there is going to be a substantial gap time between the cessation of intensive fossil fuel use and the full roll out of “green” fuel sources. Indeed, I worry that there will never be a full replication in the future of the present age’s high per capita energy usage.” No, of course not. We’ll have to get a lot cleverer than we have been. (Easy for me to say, here in mild Oregon, most of the time, but I grew up in hot, humid southern Indiana and work outside.)

            The original Permaculture books (try the library, or they may be available online) have an extensive discussion of passive cooling, since they’re from Australia. The idea is to create a damp, cool planting on the north (anti-sun) side of the house, then use the heat in the sun side to “chimney” out the hot air, drawing in the cool air from the north side.

            1. ambrit

              The old, pre air conditioning houses here in the Deep South had very tall, top and bottom opening windows to create a heat driven air draft in the rooms. Older buildings had transoms over the doors for a similar reason.
              I like the old Middle Eastern passive technology of a heat tower on the house to create a draft effect during the day.

              1. Wukchumni

                You still see circa 1900 heat towers all over the Central Valley, there’s one just before you get to Lake Kaweah that’s in fine shape.

                They’re always about 10-20 feet away from the house, 12×12 feet in diameter and go up to say 25 feet.

      4. Ignacio

        You are right. The many deaths in France that year was also due to the deviation and lack of preparedness. This time, at least, preparedness has improved so no one expects so many casualties. Here in Madrid, in the past century heat waves used to reach about 100ºF but more recently 105ºF are easily surpassed. Of course, because 95-100º is normal here in summer, the deviation is not too large though some among the elder will suffer. We are expecting about 110ºC in the Ebro valley which by Indian or southern Arizona standards is normal but not that normal in Zaragoza. The wave has been widely announced and I don’t expect heat related casualties to climb by much.

      5. Wyoming


        You are a smart guy and I liked reading your posts (not that I agree with some of them) so I would prefer you take a bit better care of yourself. A mile and a half a week and suffering the effects you listed from a short walk in only warm temperature and moderate humidity conditions strongly indicates you are not actually very ‘healthy’. A healthy person can go all day in the conditions you describe as long as they have adequate water and electrolytes.

        I am a lot older than you and am orders of magnitude more active than you describe. I see what the effects of lack of activity are all the time living around mostly retired people. If you want to live a healthy life you must move or you will soon not be able to move. With very bad effects. At the least make that trip to the store in town every morning right after you get up. And then at least that much more sometime during the day. And then find something more to do again. Every day. It is well worth it.

        Maybe I am a bit sensitive about this issue right now as a friend of mine dropped dead last Fri and we had been talking about this very issue the day before.

        1. Jonathan Holland Becnel

          My dads pushing 60 and does the stone/brick/coping/tile work on new pools.

          Hes literally in infinitely better shape than me.


        2. Clive

          I know, and thanks for your valuable advice. I should be a lot more careful especially as the heat finished off my beloved grandmother-in-law. You get through your twenties and thirties and think you’re indestructible. That’s natural. In your forties, you do start to appreciate you have physical limits and the hit you take from exceeding these is a lot worse the later on you are in life. But you kind of shrug that off. Well, I did, anyway. I did get a valuable lesson today. And a warning. The sort of climate affects we’re heading into isn’t, I don’t think, about to become any more forgiving of such carelessness.

          And yes, it’s hard, when you do a desk job, not to end up sedentary. I keep my weight down and eat ultra-healthily, but I don’t get probably nearly enough physical exercise.

          1. PlutoniumKun

            As a 52 year old, I can confirm that its possible to build up a significantly greater resistance to the sort of stress you describe. I’ve always been pretty active and fit, but when I approached my half century I was feeling the negative effects of growing older and the accumulation of a number of injuries, and so I consciously focused more on doing high intensity exercise, resistance work, and hot yoga. I feel far, far better for it, and I’m certainly more robust now in the face of physical or mental stress than I was 10 or even 20 years ago.

            Don’t believe anyone who tells you that you can’t do high intensity work when you are older, or that you should accept physical decline in middle age. Once you don’t do anything stupid (i.e. talk to doctor and/or physio first), you’d be surprised just how much you can improve and how much better you’ll feel for it.

            1. Wyoming

              Very true about the high intensity work. I concentrate on walking, running, elliptical and such as I am most concerned about heart health and all that stuff. I still lift 5 times a week but not for max weights.

              But there are some guys in my gym who are 70 or so that are lifting massive weights still – 300+ lb bench presses, leg presses of 500+ lbs and in general are about 2 times stronger than me in pretty much every kind of weight lift. Course they outweigh me by 80-100 lbs too but man are they strong.

            2. Ancient1

              PK, I heartily agree with you. I am in my 83rd year and have been “working out” since in my 30’s. This was mostly ‘free weights” with aerobics with help from trainers. We begin to loose muscle mass beginning in our 40’s. so it is important to do the strength training. Also a good diets and recuperation is important. Nowadays. it is yoga and free weights. The yoga is important for balance and muscle activity along wit meditation.
              For some 50 years, I was a licensed, practicing architect, and was at the drafting table and outside climbing around structures and roofs. Miss that, but I miss most it the loss of being able to “draw”. Technology destroyed all that and life goes on……….

            3. Anon

              Well, considering the general low level of physical fitness of Americans, higher intensity workouts can provide marked improvements in fitness levels. It can also produce higher incidence of injury, some more catastrophic than others.

              Good fitness is a lifetime endeavor. And it best begin in youth (so you will know your body better as you age, or increase intensity in later years). There are legions of “fitness experts” because most folks don’t know how to train for physical fitness. (I see folks doing straight legged sit-ups all the time.) Understanding the capability of your joints is as important as your muscle development. Rest and recovery is where muscles gain improvement; not during the intensity phase.

              As for 70 year olds pushing a 300 lb. bench press, that is asking for injury. At 71, I can push 250 lbs., but at the risk of developing rotator-cuff issues; and a long hiatus to heal. Intense workouts require many days of recovery in Senior-hood.
              It’s better to dial back the weight-training intensity, develop non-impact fitness activities (swimming) and get plenty of sleep to stay healthy.

              Every body is different. Know yours well. (And it is diet, not exercise, that controls your body weight.)

        3. flora

          A healthy person can go all day in the conditions you describe as long as they have adequate water and electrolytes.

          And, if they/their body has had time to acclimate to that temperature/humidity range. A sudden 10-20 degree F jump is a shock to the system even if one is in good shape; a change that wouldn’t normally cause problems in a healthy person if the temperature/humidity gradually rose from 70-90F over a few weeks time, imo. For instance, in mid-July 90F is common where I live. By mid-July most people here have acclimated to the warmer temps and go about their daily activities. But sometimes we’ll get a crazy jump from 70-90F in early May and it just exhausts people to deal with July heat in early May. People stay indoors and turn on the air conditioner. There’s been no acclimation to hot weather in early May.

      6. Robert Hahl

        I suspect that exercise is greatly overrated for longevity. My 99-year old mother-in-law never broke a sweat in her life, while her younger brother died on the tennis court six years ago.

        1. PlutoniumKun

          Statistically, there is no question about there being a link between physical activity and longevity, but its not as strong as some might think – diet is more important. There are long lived populations who are very physically inactive (I believe some European populations of Ashkenazi Jews are example).

          Its important to remember though that many older people may never have done sports or worked physically, but they still may well have been far more active in their younger years than people brought up being ferried everywhere in cars, sitting long hours at screens and using powered lawnmowers, etc. Recent studies seem to indicate that general physical activity on a daily basis is just as important as ‘fitness’ for overall health.

        2. Wyoming

          Well there are always the anecdotal data points. My mom was one also as she smoked 3 packs a day for 70+ years and did not die of lung cancer. But overall it is best to keep the body active and not smoke like a chimney.

          Another issue is quality of life. Keeping fit and active makes dealing with the various declines of old age a lot more manageable and they ‘usually’ take a lot longer to settle in.

      7. Procopius

        You’re right about putting on a sweater. In Thailand if it gets down to 27° C at night it’s really comfortable with a thick comforter pulled up around my neck and my head out in the refreshing cold. Our heat wave two years ago was 43-44° every day for a month. I wouldn’t have survived without air conditioning.

  3. zagonostra


    Not much coverage of below and U.S.’s role, especially that of HRC.

    About 40 soldiers invaded the campus of the National Autonomous University of Honduras (UNAH) firing live ammunition and tear gas into a crowd of hundreds of student protesters, leaving 20 injured. The five wounded by bullets are in “stable” condition, according to hospital authorities.

  4. dearieme

    Group of ultra-rich Americans calls for wealth tax

    Yes: say they have to pay an annual tax of 5% on their wealth over $100 million. They could each be given a lapel pin so that they can subtly boast “Am I not rich?” It’s a pity that a titled nobility is forbidden: otherwise everyone who paid the wealth tax for a decade could be given a life peerage bearing the title Count and allowed to swank about in, let us hope, a non-vulgar way.

    Or the old Roman habit could be adopted, a sort of noblesse oblige. The rich have to accept local political responsibilities, and are expected to provide the locality with aqueducts, circuses, doles, or whatever.

    Whereas at present the rich (Donald J Nothillary excepted) tend to avoid political office and simply put their chosen corrupted puppets into office instead.

    Mind you, I doubt that 5% was the figure these chaps had in mind.

    1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      We see comments like yours often here. A British person reflecting on British Broadcasting Corp., or Americans at the US media.

      Do see Russians say the same about, say, RT?

      “Yes, I expect liars do excel at RT.”

      1. Procopius

        I don’t think RT aims at Russian audiences. Tass is pretty boring, but I think I would trust their reporting on Iran more than the NYT.

  5. pjay

    Re: ‘How a radical legal ideology gave rise to economic inequality in the US’

    A nice discussion of a major component of neoliberal ideology. From the article:

    “The genius of law and economics – whose influence in legal institutions became really ascendant in the 1970s – was to resuscitate the key elements of the Lochner-era approach but by clothing them in connection to a supposedly objective and neutral social science, rather than to a particular political and moral vision. In this way, law and economics obscured its own activism on behalf of the powerful.”

    And as “objective and neutral social science” (perhaps muting the “social” part a bit), it was a useful tool for indoctrinating a generation of the educated professional/managerial class on the Wisdom of The Market.

    This article fits well with Lambert’s fine review of Leary’s book ‘Keywords’ that was posted yesterday.

    1. Summer

      Is it due to the “genius” of the law and economics program or the roots/foundation of the Constitution? How different are these interpretations said to so different from…say the Gilded Age?

    1. flora

      Capitalism has now wholly overthrown the ancient feudal power structures of aristocracies – and their religious justifications to the masses.
      Does capitalism still need democracy – the ideas of the enlightenment and the rights of man – to justify itself in order to continue in power?
      I think all three books reviewed are asking two basic question, imo: “Can democracy and democratic govt power rein in the growing power of capitalism? On what basis, moral or economic, could the check on capitalism’s money power be enacted and enforced?” My 2 cents.

      1. a different chris

        Overthrown? Or reproduced?

        Because if it’s the second, which I think it is, then you’ve answered your question.

      2. Carolinian

        That”s a great Galbraith article–full of plain speaking.

        And some of us hold out faint hope for democratic checks which is why things like Russiagate or Mueller or impeachment or censorship–wholly driven by the elites–are anathema. The goal of the left should be to persuade rather than deplore but our upper class isn’t much interested in icky flyover country full of all those Walmarts. High finance and the FP Great Game are a lot more their style. They don’t have a plan for when the masses have finally had enough nor a talented politician like FDR who can keep the lid on. The whole system is charging toward a comeuppance.

        1. neo-realist

          The treatment of the Occupy movement in the Bay Area and NYC was probably a warm-up for how mass dissent against the present wealth arrangements will be dealt with, with some MAGA types helping out the cops as well.

          FDR didn’t have the benefit of a technologically advanced police state apparatus to rein in the IWW and similar groups, so he had to pay the New Deal ransom to keep the peace.

          1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

            Re-watch Ken Burn’s Vietnam to re-learn what works. Huge masses of people in the streets. It’s the only language they understand.

            But we’ve moved from “we” to “me”…and the lone self-interested individual has no chance whatsoever in the face of ever-metastasizing corporate and state power. No unions. No solidarity, just IDPol divisions. Completely captured and neutered “parties”. Pravda press. All circus and no bread.

            We should be gearing up for a Dem Nat’l Convention a la 1968: rage against the backroom deals that subvert the national will. Instead people will stay home, staring into their phones as their world and their futures get smaller and smaller. Then The State can just press the (delete) button and away you go, into oblivion.

            “Res”, a thing, “publica”, of the people. Not with a bang, but a whimper. So I think the only rational response is: rage.

            1. todde

              when I lived in sh!t I had a close group of friends. Not like that now. Could be my fault

    2. lyman alpha blob

      On a very related note, I’m in the middle of this book – How Will Capitalism End?

      The author Wolfgang Streeck shares the convictions of the authors that Galbraith reviews in that there is no viable alternative to capitalism on the horizon but is far less sanguine about the potential for reform. His thesis is that capitalism and democracy had a shaky coexistence in the aftermath of the New Deal, but 40 years of neoliberalism has pretty much killed off the democratic governance that was able to restrain capitalist excesses. Any new growth now comes from financial engineering rather than producing anything useful (what NCers would call “groaf”) and posits, much like the archdruid did on his old website, that the entire system will eventually collapse in a slow decline which is already well underway. Only time will tell what comes next, but the interim isn’t likely to be pretty.

      Anyway, it’s a very good read and it touches on many of the subjects near and dear to the readership here. In fact it may have been here where I heard about the book in the first place.

  6. zagonostra

    >Today’s Guardian Online Front Page

    Am I living in a Baudrillardian dream?

    Headline: They wanted the American dream’: reporter reveals story behind tragic photo

    Spotlight: My secret shame: I am (still) addicted to Pokémon Go

    Opinion: Someone accused the US president of rape. The media shrugged

    1. KevinD

      That photo of the father and daughter will haunt me forever, same as the young child washed up on a beach – which has been long forgotten.

      The things being done in our name….

  7. a different chris

    Dean Baker maybe even missed an important set of links:

    On a per capita basis, Japan’s economy has grown at an average annual rate of 1.4 percent since the collapse of its stock and real estate in 1990. That’s somewhat less than the 2.3 percent rate of the U.S. economy,

    Per capita, right? But note this:

    According to the OECD, the length of the average work year has declined by almost 16 percent between 1990 and 2017 (the last year for which data are available). By comparison, the length of the average work year in the United States has declined by less than 3 percent

    Per-capita per hour narrows the gap, no?

    And finally:

    Japan increased from 75.9 years in 1990 to 81.0 years in 2016 (the last year for which data are available). In the United States it increased from 71.8 years in 1990 to 76.1

    So part of this “per capita” are old people who seem unlikely to be very productive – and they didn’t “go die” as our rich economists so think they should.

    But yes let’s worry about Japan – let’s worry about how they seem to be figuring it out and we so are not.

    1. PlutoniumKun

      Yes, that article is a good corrective on the usual nonsense spouted about Japan (although I’ve noticed of late that nobody goes on about their debt levels anymore, it used to be ‘received wisdom’ that Japan would collapse because of it). Japan has many problems – and the demographic crash is causing all sorts of unintended issues, not least entire housing estates and villages and even quite large towns becoming unplanned retirement communities – but they are handling it well, and ordinary Japanese are not suffering as they did.

      Arguably, quality of life in Japan is increasing significantly as there is less and less pressure to work long hours and younger people are fighting more for good living and working conditions, they simply won’t put up with what their parents did.

      The bottom line is that aging populations should not be a problem if society maintains its cohesion. And what matters is quality of life, not notional GDP figures.

      1. John k

        Absolutely on your last bit. Course, oligarchs don’t see it that way.
        Imagine how fast quality of life, and lifetime itself, could be improved overnight. Uni health care, major infra for near full employment among blue collars, no more me wars, let all the mj inmates out of jail. 15/hr. Break up monopolies and jail criminal white collars. Not all of these require new laws.

      2. dearieme

        The bottom line is that aging populations should not be a problem if society maintains its cohesion.

        Have a care: someone “woke” might not like that sort of thing.

  8. Svante

    Alzheimer’s “cabal” on Stat: Anybody able to read and synopsize this? This is getting creepier by the minute. I’d certainly be willing to buy into a paid “news reader” type blog-aggregator to read a specific bunch of articles each month. I’m sure the technology is readily available to do this at an acceptable profit to the originator & distribution syndicates. Guess they’re pissed-off, about end-running their pay walls using add-ons and apps? Curcumin, Omega 3, Garlic, NAD/ Pterostilbene, anti-inflammatory diet?

      1. Svante

        Thank you, so very much! Numerous loved-ones with parents dead from something I’d barely considered (so I’d not fixated upon any specific snake-oil fad). I simply LOVE that metasearch & social networking is blocking “alternative medicine” or frolicking unicorn type apocryphal miracle cure websites. Research of anything is difficult, nowadays. I’d been trying to follow the whole NO/ONOO Cycle- Proinflammatory cytokine sickness behavior- herbicide dessicant cesspool, and it’s virtually impossible to figure out which K Street think-tank is pulling the plug on my pet conspiracy theories? Terpene & CBD druglords?

    1. Brooklin Bridge

      Agree, titillating title and first half paragraph followed by, ever more frequent paywall against which one’s interest gets stubbed. It’s an industry in itself and perfect for AI automation if it’s not already there.

      Didn’t see your comment before I stuck my two cents in below.

    2. Mark

      Retired Pharma Alzheimer’s researcher here. Haven’t read the article but this isn’t news within the Alzheimer’s research community. In defense of the “cabal” I will say that in the ’80s and ’90s they did groundbreaking work on amyloid plaques and a group of families around the world that suffer from familial, early Alzheimer’s Disease (AD). All the genetic evidence from those families pointed to what became known as the Beta-Amyloid Peptide (BAP) hypothesis (and those researchers became known as the BAPtists).

      Over time it has become clear that this is not a productive approach to drugs for the far more common, (sporadic) form of AD that occurs in older adults. Why is still unclear. Those who exert so much control over the direction of AD research steadfastly refuse to admit this.

      For what it’s worth my own opinion is that the primary reason for the lack of progress is not our theory of the disease origin. It’s the lack of a useful animal model (sadly animal models are still essential to drug development). AD has been documented in animals (many of you with elderly dogs will know this from sad experience). However a useful model requires researchers to be able to generate a disease reliably and reproducibly in an animal species. So far that has been elusive. In the case of AD that means not just the generation of amyloid plaques and tangles but also and most importantly neurodegeneration in the brain similar to that observed in humans. Only then can one run trials with controls to show that neurodegeneration occurs in the controls but not in the treated group.

      What about curcumin etc? They may work but human trials in AD are very, very difficult (i.e., expensive). Positive evidence from a valid (useful) animal model for those compounds would be great. In the meantime you should try them. I do.

      1. Svante

        Thank you. As you can see from our conversations, on these threads. It’s increasingly frustrating to attempt research of anything deemed “alternative,” on the metasearch engines, blog aggregators or social media. Nothing to winnow out charlatans, deluded fanatics and speciously obdurate cranks. And at your leisure, if you could sprinkle in some links. I know it’s largely genetic & reduction of glycemic load, cardio & mental exercise…

        1. Mark

          The only information I might have access to that you wouldn’t is in the primary literature (anyone can do searches and get access to abstracts and a few complete papers at The problem is that in the absence of a valid animal model all of these studies will be correlative and speculative. In the absence of positive results from a valid animal model it will be difficult if not impossible to get public or private funding for large scale human trials on non-proprietary potential treatments.

          1. Whoamolly

            I’ve tried researching the primary literature, but find that it’s almost impossible.
            – Too much information, much of which conflicts
            – Too much medical jargon
            – Inability to put the studies into meaningful context
            Short version: I’ve come to believe that a civilian isn’t going to be able to decipher this stuff from the morass of primary sources. Life is too short.
            What to do? Look for trusted writers, and take what even they say with a grain of salt. People like Gawande and Doidge. I also try to read the essential primary resources, and look for a minimum of two different sources for every key fact, idea or concept.

      1. Mike Mc

        My two cents. Wife has Hashimoto’s thyroiditis and has struggled with thyroid levels and a host of issues. Nothing seemed to work well; then she ran into a childhood gal pal with the same illness. She recommended an anti-inflammatory diet which had let her friend drop 70 lbs. in about a year.

        Fairly restrictive to start: no dairy, corn, wheat, alcohol, nightshades (peppers/potatoes/eggplant), soy, refined sugar and so on. Leaves lots of veggies and eventually fruit, grains like quinoa, oats, plenty of nut flours.

        She lost 50 lbs. in about nine months, wears clothes she had given up on (but not discarded), and most of all – Does. Not. Ache. Prior to this diet she hurt, a lot, almost everywhere but joints in particular. No such problem now.

        Is it a chore to eat differently than the same old packaged crap in stores and restaurants? Kinda, but if doing so means No Pain it’s not exactly a sacrifice, is it? I manage to scarf the occasional plate of nachos or slice of pizza, but I feel better too (and my clothes fit better as well).

        Given the increasing cost – and failures – of so much of modern medicine, changing your diet puts YOU in charge of how YOU feel which is also a rare enough thing nowadays. Check it out!

        1. Svante

          Last place, was right by the YOOJ, Hometown Amish Market. So, South Beach (with this or that thing, organic. Knew about pre-harvest herbicides, stacked-trait, HFCS & rBGH issues. I’d worked with Glyphosate as a descaler) seemed a good idea. It was rural, we had dependable Japanese cars, so cycling, skiing, sex and hiking replaced citified walking & lugging stuff up stairs. The low carb weeks… I’d take a job in Mississippi or something!

          1. ambrit

            “I’d take a job in Mississippi or something!”
            s/ That’s a Red Flag for Cognitive Impairment Disease! Please seek professional help! People with CIDs need not suffer in silence any more. /s

              1. ambrit

                Oh good heavens! We lived in, and weathered the storm in the little no-horse town of Pearlington, Mississippi. That’s just five miles, in a straight line, from the Port Bienville Industrial Park, the site of that steel mill.
                I grok your dilemma. Go out to the boonies to work, where “civilization” is a fabulous myth, or stay in the heart of the “Kultur Zone” but not be able to afford any of it.
                I hope your co-exister kicked that Gastro Intestinal Monkey off of her back. Jones’n for Pasta ain’t pretty.

        2. jrs

          sounds much like an allergy elimination diet (only then you can’t even have nuts), which seems a bit in the alternative medical sphere, but when actual medicine can’t diagnose anything except suggest “possible allergies” then one tries stuff.

  9. dearieme

    their counterparts have developed drugs that helped cut deaths from cardiovascular disease by more than half

    I wonder what the author has in mind? The reduction in heart attacks in (principally) middle-aged men started in about 1970 and bears the hallmarks of the declining phase of an infectious epidemic. I doubt that drugs had anything to do with the decline in incidence, unless it’s a fluke side-effect of the widespread prescription of antibiotics. The decline also started far too early to be ascribed to changes in smoking, and is both too early and too large to attribute to changes in diet.

    Did “drugs” have an effect on outcomes i.e. make heart attacks less often fatal? I don’t know. I doubt it but am open to correction.

    None of which will, of course, in any way inhibit medical men from claiming the credit.

      1. dearieme

        Nah, that reduction started too slowly to explain the rapid drop. Also it would have had to have been effective without any time lag, which is implausible.

        One of the most interesting relevant observations I know of is that autopsies on American dead from Vietnam showed huge rates of CVD. But these were young men who had not remotely been smoking long enough for it to cause the problem. Autopsies on American dead from more recent wars show that the problem has almost vanished. So, nothing to do with drugs, nothing to do with medical men.

        Heart attacks are now mainly a killer of codgers who have reached the stage of “he’s got to die of something”. But they used to cut a swathe through people (mainly men) of working age.

        Never mind; manufacturers of statins – and, even more, their in-patent replacements – must be delighted that doctors claim that drugs will save you. The doctors, I suppose, must be really keen that people shouldn’t realise that many cardiologists and cardiac surgeons are probably redundant.

        Anyway, the cardiac people have for decades been pursuing a paradigm that is bogus, namely that animal fats in your diet kill you. (Indeed, for many years they adopted the lunatic argument that cholesterol in your diet killed you.) I conjecture that the Alzheimer’s article was suggesting that the plaque-gives-you-Alzheimer’s paradigm is bogus too. I dare say, but at least the world of Alzheimer’s researchers is open to debating the issue which is more than can be said for the CVD crew.

        1. Cal2

          “autopsies on American dead from Vietnam showed huge rates of CVD” Mystery?

          How about breathing Monsanto’s Agent Orange defoliant, aerial sprayed over thousands of square miles?

          I surmise, that even if the government or mainstream health knew the connection, they would have protected this defense contractor.

          1. Shonde


            “VA presumes Veterans’ ischemic heart disease is related to their exposure to Agent Orange or other herbicides during military service. VA’s final regulation* recognizing this association took effect on October 30, 2010. Veterans exposed to herbicides do not have to prove a connection between their ischemic heart disease and military service to be eligible to receive VA benefits.”

          2. dearieme

            Not much chance. Many of the American dead will have been nowhere near Agent Orange.

            But there is a point there that I take: I wonder what autopsies of, say, young American males who’d died in car crashes showed? I’ve never seen a discussion of that.

            1. Cal2

              The entire Hudson Valley downstream ecosystem and surrounding areas was polluted by One General Electrics dioxin plant. Imagine aerial spraying over 4.5 million acres?


              Aerial spraying, handling the stuff on bases, contamination of the drinking water there, contamination of the rivers from which troops drank, contamination of crops, meat and fish?

              Dioxins and related chemicals work in parts per million and per billion.

          3. Procopius

            How about breathing Monsanto’s Agent Orange defoliant, aerial sprayed over thousands of square miles?

            I think most soldiers were not exposed. I served in III Corps (Pleiku) late in the war (1969-71) and as far as I know was never exposed to Orange. It’s a thought, though. I wonder if there’s a data series available. I never heard about autopsies finding widespread CVD before.

          1. dearieme

            I point to the dangers of misinterpreting “risk factor”: all it means is positive correlate. It does not mean cause: but note the frequent dishonest slide from its true meaning to its implied meaning.

            It’s interesting to see a reference to the work of Ancel Keys written before it became fairly widely recognised that he’d been rather a crook on the subject of CVD and diet.

      2. Robert Hahl

        I have heard the reduction in heart attacks has a lot to do with improved nutrition during childhood.

        1. Mark

          Did children eat better in the US in the 19th century? Scroll down to Figure 1 in the link below and look at the green line for all deaths due to heart disease. Death rates roughly doubled from about 1900 – 1950 and then fell by about half of that by 1999 (i.e, back to where they were in 1900):

          Doesn’t fit the usual story about the miracle of modern medicine. Drugs and other interventions didn’t really get going in large scale until after 1970.

      1. ambrit

        Due to budgetary constraints, I’ve ‘experimented’ with various combinations of the five drugs my general practitioner has prescribed for me. Now I have a handle on what does the real ‘heavy lifting’ on that front and can manage my medications more “efficiently.” I’ll not give specifics, but it seems that certain body types respond to various types of pharmacological ‘intervention’ in an interesting mix.
        The exercise factor is also important. After one of my “High Heat Day Shopping Perambulations” I have seen my blood pressure for the rest of that day drop into the 100/60 range with 60 heart beats per minute. That degree of adjustment was a completely unexpected result. This is a regular outcome of heavy exercise for me. The problem is that after such a workout, I’m indolent, torpid, languorous, and effete for the rest of the day. How deplorable!

  10. Henry Moon Pie

    Climate apartheid–

    From the article:

    This “over-reliance” on the private sector would likely lead to what he termed “climate apartheid” – where the rich “escape overheating, hunger, and conflict”.

    As far back as 2007, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change warned that the “poorest of the poor in the world… are going to be the worst hit”.

    As best as can be determined, “‘over-reliance’ on the private sector” is exactly what the elites of the world have planned, i.e. if you’re the grabby type who has stuffed your pockets full of cash, climate change won’t be that much of a sweat for you, at least for the next few decades. In other words, let the poor of the earth die so I can continue to enjoy my luxurious lifestyle. The poor end up being a sacrifice to “convenience,” personal comfort and conspicuous consumption.

    In contrast, there’s an interesting article on today that recounts interviews with Irish seniors who grew up in rural Ireland in the 1930s. That was a world of privies, candlelight and barefoot summers because shoes were too precious to waste when your toes wouldn’t freeze. How did these old folks feel about what must have been horrible hardship and deprivation?

    “We were real happy children, never bored,” said Jenny Buckley, who grew up in County Offaly in the 1930s. Most of the elders I interviewed said the same – their early years were filled with picking wildflowers and finding birds’ nests, climbing trees and looking under logs, swimming to islands or rowing boats, declaring themselves kings and queens of their domain, swearing eternal friendship, and engaging in the feral joy of a hunter-gatherer childhood.

    Mind you, they had plenty of chores on their family homesteads — picking crops, caring for animals, all the other duties that kept their families fed. “Our farm kept us going; we bought nothing but tea, sugar, rice and sultanas,” she said. “Now our pocket money was that we had a hen each and collected her eggs and sold them.” I hear the same from many of my neighbours; by the time they hit the hormones of adolescence, they had already gained more business savvy and shouldered more responsibility than most 50-year-olds today.

    Surely these veterans of poverty must look at today’s children with envy for their electronic marvels, convenience food and Nikes? Nope.

    In fact, many people I talked to feel sorry for their grandchildren and great-grandchildren, whom they see at family gatherings buried in their electronic devices. I wouldn’t want to be a child these days, they tell me.

    I’ve noticed that I’m spending a lot of time reading and listening to people who were children during the Great Depression: Wendell Berry; Gary Snyder; Murray Bookchin. Their definitions of “poverty,” though slightly different from each other, all share a focus on being deprived of caring human relationships, a close connection to nature and a sense of being able to fend for one’s self when it comes to the needs of daily living. None seem focused on a new crossover every three years, trips abroad or fast fashion.

    We are faced with a moral choice. Humans have exceeded the Earth’s carrying capacity if significant portions of humanity are to live what Americans consider a “middle class lifestyle.” If our politicians have the excuse that Americans (and Europeans and the Japanese, etc.) won’t stand for any reduction in convenience, comfort or keeping up with the Joneses, we’ll continue on this path that condemns millions to real suffering and death. Later, we’ll risk desperate “solutions” to our worsening collective position with either totalitarian government or half-assed geoengineering that will send us from the frying pan into the fire.

    Considering how unhappy many if not most “middle class” Americans are, especially the young, we would not be losing much if we jettisoned that aspiration, did a 180 degree off the Consumers’ Highway to Hell and committed ourselves to a simpler, less convenient, less comfortable, less envy-inducing lifestyle. That’s the first step toward making a serious effort to shelter as many as possible from the coming storms.

    1. Cal2

      The women too scared to have children due to climate change“,
      The very women who perchance should pass their educational and environmental values along to
      a child(ren), with a husband, to build a better world.

      “Mr. Alston’s report contains one estimate of 140 million displaced people in Sub-Saharan Africa, South Asia, and Latin America alone.” Not scared to have children:
      “Niger topping the list at 7.153 children per woman, followed by Somalia at 6.123 children per woman. The Democratic Republic of Congo, Mali and Chad follow at 5.963, 5.922 and 5.797 children per woman, respectively.”

      Central America

      If these folks get to California via the Mexican land bridge, they are guaranteed free health care until age 26, past citizen childbearing age. Are they still refugees then?

      This new population can enjoy a high carbon emitting lifestyle as mass consumers, older car owners, and Uber drivers. California drivers licenses are given to “undocumented”.

      They have the same opportunity as a multi-generational American homeless or poor person of getting a low income, or free housing unit, via the housing lottery, in the legally mandated newly built low income residential units forced on all communities, and transit-oriented high-rise developments, built to help stop carbon emissions. Wow, that makes sense!
      Example of how these are funded in today’s other linked article:

    2. Judith

      I have not noticed much discussion here or anywhere of the necessity for shared sacrifice in order to address, at some level, the climate catastrophe. The knowledge and skills required to make do with what is readily available may be disappearing, at least among the world’s urban dwellers. And it is an interesting question: what skills and materials are necessary for a small community of people living at some level collaboratively to be able to survive.

      I hope you have read “Distant Neighbors Selected Letters from Wendell Berry and Gary Snyder”. Many good lessons there. Such a loving friendship, even when they are gently disagreeing.

      1. Henry Moon Pie

        Thanks to someone on this site, perhaps you, I have checked out Distant Neighbors and am about halfway through it. I’ve also watched a YouTube video of a joint appearance the two made in Kentucky when the book was released.

        A few years ago, Staughton and Alice Lynd, also born in the 30s, gave the advice that one should develop a skill that could be helpful to one’s neighbors. In my case, I’ve been working on including as wide a variety of medicinal herbs as possible in the limited space of my urban garden. That has led to learning more about how to harvest, preserve and use them. Next up, maybe taking an organic chemistry course that’s offered for free to us oldsters at the nearby state university.

        There is some discussion along the lines of shared sacrifice on NC. Lambert’s piece about victory gardens inspired some of that talk. To have any hope of seeing shared sacrifice become more commonplace, it is essential that those sacrifices are seen to be shared fairly. Macron’s elitist approach to reducing carbon emissions so that the burden fell on truckers and working people will generate resentment and occasionally rebellion. Given what I witnessed as a child growing up in a rural community in the 50s and 60s, and the stories I heard about living through the Great Depression and WW II, people are very capable of mutual aid. Fifty years of neoliberalism have done their best to erode those abilities, but I believe they’re still there, ready to be awakened. The keys are that those asked to participate have a clear and full understanding of the situation that requires banding together and that they perceive that we are truly all in this together as demonstrated by the sacrifices required of the most privileged in the society.

      2. Cal2

        “necessity for shared sacrifice in order to address, at some level, the climate catastrophe”

        Building one’s own resilient skills does make sense. Gardening is going to be a hell of a lot more important in the future than coding. So does militantly advocating for zero population growth and fighting “development.”

        Whatever sacrifice one makes is infinitesimal compared to the effects of population growth. The elite are counting on people getting out of their way and off the global warming reducing, market based, toll roads. Their private jets, Masarati’s, “My carbon is offset with Terrapass!” bumperstickers notwithstanding, pouring thousand of tons of concrete for yet another “transit oriented development” high rise, will subsume the personal sacrifices of millions of people.

        Quality, not quantity, doth a nation make.

  11. The Rev Kev

    “Trump Keeps Talking About the Last Military Standoff With Iran — Here’s What Really Happened”

    Not surprised that they tried to blame the sailors. That is never a good sign for an organization to blame the troops. They were given a mission that was none of their business, given equipment that was abused through over-use, working under faulty procedures while working under a hostile command climate. I read some comments elsewhere at the time that they should have had a gunfight with the Iranians and shot their way out which was just insane. Lt. Nartker may have made some faulty assumptions with his decisions but he shone with intelligence when he asked what his highest commander’s intent was and so did not do something that was not only stupid but he saved a lot of lives as well as the nuclear treaty.
    The US Navy is being seriously overstretched with mission after mission without enough time for either training or maintenance. It also affects new ships. I just read today that the future USS Billings, a new Freedom-class Littoral Combat Ship, was on its way south when it banged up its fenders on a parked cargo ship in Canada ( It apparently lost control but this may have been due to the US Navy habitually accepting ships into service that are faulty from the get go-

    1. Monty

      “USS Billings”

      What’s next? USS Fees, USS Service Charge and the USS Explanation of Benefits?

    2. Chris Smith

      Littoral Combat Ship indeed. Those things should be called the Boondogle Class. Maybe we can send a few of those with some F-35s to show them we mean business! (Business for Lockheed and Grumman that is. Hope those F-35s don’t freeze up mid flight with a software update.)

    3. wilroncanada

      But Kev
      All defects are supposed to be rectified by software!
      I use “rectified” deliberately.

      1. ambrit

        Sorry. The regulars here have a low capacitance for bafflegab. Although I must admit that the potential is there.

  12. Wukchumni

    Thinking of the high heat, here’s a link to the SoCal apple swami…

    Our trees are growing from the blast-furnace heat of inland Southern California to the tropics of Equatorial Africa. We’ve shipped to Mumbai, India, Bangkok, Thailand, Belize, the Caribbean, Phoenix, Arizona, the Middle East, and the American Deep South. Our trees are growing in the gardens of presidents and kings, as well as the gardens of tiny remote African villages. This year we even opened a branch in Uganda to better serve the African Continent. With such experience we are certainly able to service your hot climate location.

  13. Bugs Bunny

    Re the BBC Climate Apartheid article, I found this quote fantastic:

    “The Human Rights Council can no longer afford to rely only on the time-honoured techniques of organizing expert panels, calling for reports that lead nowhere, urging others to do more but doing little itself, and adopting wide-ranging but inconclusive and highly aspirational resolutions,” he wrote.

    Instead, it must commission an urgent expert study on the possible options available to avert disaster, and “propose and monitor specific actions”, Mr Alston said.

    Nothing to see here, people.

      1. Bugs Bunny

        Please excuse the Star Trek reference* but the passage reminded me of that killer space probe that Kirk talks into destroying itself for logical inconsistency.

        Guess that won’t work here.

        *TOS: The Changeling, Season 2 ep. 3

    1. Cal2


      Municipalities hoarding money extorted from citizens is not an “affordable housing policy.”
      The dishonesty, desperation against public opinion and the hubris of the local politicians is palpable:

      “Representative Scott Wiener, D San Francisco, last week used what’s known as a “gut and amend” maneuver to completely rewrite a bill unrelated to housing, SB592, substituting language that he says will close loopholes in the state’s Housing Accountability Act. The original SB592 addressed licensure for barbers and cosmetologists.”

      There are already laws state laws mandating the same along new transit.

      The State Senate Bill would allow a four-to five-story [market rate] apartment building to be built in any neighborhood, statewide, within a half-mile of [existing] regular bus routes or light or heavy rail transit.


      “Fighting global warming”,”equity”, “fairness”, “housing crisis,” and that stretched and worn out, “diversity,” are the excuses for an Oklahoma Land Rush like surge in building statewide, with the attendant payoffs to state and local legislators. “Zoning is racist!” You’ll love Houston then.

      “California’s Department of Finance projects the population of California will grow to more than 50 million — up from today’s 40 million — by 2050 and to 65 million by 2100. That deluge, based on our burgeoning job-base, can’t be avoided.”

      “Bienvenidos.” Yeah, that’ll stop global warming…
      That “burgeoning job-base” may go, along with the coders, but the new population will stay.

      The developers will have long moved to their mansions in Idaho with their private airstrip.

    1. WheresOurTeddy

      if they want to track my early-90s half-ton pickup with 300,000 miles on it, they’re gonna have to put an old-school magnetic one underneath like an 80s cop show. The radio is the only digital thing in the whole truck, and it hasn’t worked in about 8 years. I enjoy the silence as my driving time has become one of the best parts of my day.

    2. cnchal

      The self driving car is also a selling tool. Here, MIT guy explains what’s most valuable about self driving cars.

      Joseph Coughlin, director of the AgeLab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, predicts that companies will have a powerful incentive to do so. “The most valuable thing coming from AV technology is trapped attention,” he says. “If I’m Amazon and I have your undivided attention for an hour, I will figure out a way to eliminate motion sickness and remove all the other obstacles to enjoying the ride so that I can sell you things.”

      The future is about serving the system. In the past, the system served you. Keep the Volvo running as long as possible. I’m thinking of getting a vanity plate. NUCRSRJUNK

      1. Carolinian

        Guess that explains why Google decided to pioneer self drive cars. There will be a big Google search box on the dashboard.

        But surveillance is already here. A friend tells me he allows his insurance company to track his car via GPS in order to get a lower rate.

        1. cnchal

          > But surveillance is already here.

          With friends like those, you have an enemy at your side, selling his data for peanuts. Soon the insurance companies will argue that not being monitored means you have something to hide, and therefore much higher premiums are in our futures for being surveillance refuseniks. A circular logic that has nothing to do with driving a car, but hey, ka-ching for them.

          There should be only one variable determining insurance premiums, your previous claims and if there are none, the rate should be the lowest price irregardless of whether you agree to the totalitarian demands of corporations or not.

          As for Google and self driving cars, I hope they waste billions and come up with snake eyes. Every AV with a bad sensor is driving blind and all it takes is a little dirt or moisture to infect the electronics to brick the thing. I can already envision the junkyards of the future, with mounds of electronic crapola disguised as cars.

          1. Carolinian

            There’s also a drive for tracking so electric cars can be billed to supplement the gas tax highway fund. Sadly my car has no GPS or cell radio although I’d love to participate. /sarc

    3. Kurtismayfield

      Every new stop light they are installing here in MA has a camera on it.. the Turnpike tracks you with cameras as well. I noticed this past weekend taking a ferry ride that there are cameras all over the place at both ports.

      Who needs autonomous cars to track is?

    4. eg

      Who knew that Rush’s “Red Barchetta” would be so close to the truth in our (or perhaps our childrens’) lifetimes?

  14. Brooklin Bridge

    The maddening saga of how an Alzheimer’s ‘cabal’ thwarted progress toward a cure for decades Stat

    Tantalizer (half) paragraph….


    Unlock this article — plus daily coverage and analysis of the biotech sector — by subscribing to STAT Plus. First 30 days free.

    I guess I should be grateful I don’t have a paywall to get into bed at night, though as I age, it looks more and more like the pharmaceutical industry wants to put up a pretty steep pay wall for staying alive.

    1. John k

      On the plus side, as soon as you call it a war tax you focus minds on should we be fighting wars at all?
      Something people don’t want to think about.
      Course, none of our right wing paygo dems would vote for it because donors.

      1. wilroncanada

        John k @12:45 pm
        The word “war” is no longer a scare word. You’ve had three generations of “war” on poverty, “war” on drugs, and so many actual wars your government has never called wars, starting after WWII with Korea, Greece, Italy, Russia, ad infinitum. The word is now meaningless for most of your population.

  15. Wukchumni

    ‘Climate apartheid’ between rich and poor looms, UN expert warns BBC
    I kind of wonder how my own personal ‘climate apartheid’ looms large in a future of less?

    The rivers here all kept flowing during the long punishing drought, and a lot of wells went tilt in the Central Valley, none really around these parts though.

    Later hopefully not sooner, somebody en masse is going to figure out what those blue highways you cant drive on represent, and my fiefdom will end up being a latter day Sutters Fort besieged by thirsty Malibu’rs.

      1. Wukchumni

        The water flowing by is already pretty much spoken for unless you have pre 1914 river rights, as The King of California owns it along with 4 other rivers that emanate out of the Sierra Nevada.

        This meticulous narrative of the rise of the cotton magnate James G. Boswell begins in the nineteen-twenties, when his family was driven from Georgia by boll-weevil infestations and brought its plantation ways to California’s San Joaquin Valley. Not to be defeated by nature again, the Boswells leveed and dammed Tulare Lake, the largest body of fresh water west of the Mississippi, to the point of extinction. In its six-hundred-square-mile basin they grew cotton, while in Los Angeles office towers they built one of the country’s largest agricultural operations, swallowing small farms and multimillion-dollar subsidies with equal vigor. Arax and Wartzman strive for evenhandedness but acknowledge the costs of Big Ag—such as evaporation ponds with selenium levels so high that ducks are born with corkscrewed beaks and no eyes, and the recurrent “hundred-year floods,” stubborn attempts by the old lake to reassert itself.

        1. Carolinian

          Presumably in our age of chemical Ag a return of the weevils is too much to ask for.

          My farm girl mom had tales of picking cotton….

          1. Wukchumni

            Something much worse is coming, Nutria.

            1 year and 410 nutria later, the war against California’s giant swamp rats rages on

            It’s been one year since the California Department of Fish and Wildlife launched a formal effort to eradicate nutria from the state’s wetlands.

            After not being seen in California since the 1970s, nutria, an invasive and destructive rodent, were rediscovered in the San Joaquin Valley in 2017. So far 410 nutria have been killed, but the Department of Fish and Wildlife warns that the war is far from over.


    1. ambrit

      You might want to seek out your local gun nuts prepper community and ‘gently’ ask what their basic strategy will be when the SHTF. Those winding mountainous roads look to be perfect for blocking actions, if not outright closure. The Sierras are a defensible position. It’s what happens inside that ‘defensible position’ that should be your main concern. Let Malibu look after itself. It always has before.

      1. Wukchumni

        Sourcing some local bamboo, i’ve sharpened Punji sticks set into dens of inequity and slathered them with righty-tighty-gawdalmightly talking points, in the hope most would be interlopers will be stopped in their tracks unable to think ahead, and also, I have a wrist-rocket.

          1. ambrit

            His ‘prepper’ neighbours probably have upgraded their wrist rockets to Milan Manpads by now.

  16. The Rev Kev

    “Kushner: Arab Peace Initiative no basis for Israel-Palestine deal”

    Trump may do something that no other previous President has been able to do and that is to unite the entire Middle East into one voice – which will absolutely reject his “deal of the century”and say so loudly.

    1. Jonathan Holland Becnel


      I cant possibly conceive of a grand alliance between Sunni, Shia, and Israel.

      Iran n Syria united with Israel n Saudi Arabia?

  17. JohnnyGL

    Buttigieg’s career is in real trouble. No courage to clean house at police dept. for several years. Because he didn’t clean house….cops operated with impunity and committed all kinds of abuses.

    Unreal….TYT sends one reporter and finds a litany of stories in S. Bend. What’s that say about the rest of the news media that they couldn’t be bothered to send a SINGLE reporter to S. Bend, IN to find out what things were like on the ground?

    Now, because of the reporting….Mayor Pete getting crushed in these press conferences make a lot more sense, when you’ve got the context.

    It must be the case that Buttigieg had no clue how bad things had gotten. He never would have gone back to S. Bend, knowing he was going to get crushed like that.

    1. Arizona Slim

      Thanks for the video link. Methinks that, in the near future, Mayor Pete will suspend his presidential campaign.

    2. JohnnyGL

      Axelrod reminds us exactly what was wrong with Obama administration and why it was an aject failure and what a hollow understanding he has.

      This was not a ‘missed opportunity’ to connect with voters or just bad PR. This was a failure of courage and leadership. The only way to have made a success of this conference was for Mayor Pete to have spent the last couple of years investigating, firing, and prosecuting cops from the rank-and-file offenders up through the ranks and including his own police chief.

      Mayor Pete Buttigieg didn’t do any of those things, He chose to cover up, bury, and move on to the next job. In a word, he failed the community of S. Bend, IN.

      Axelrod doesn’t see that…he just sees optics at a press conference. Much like his boss saw things the same way.

  18. Carolinian

    Re nuking North Korea–Caitlin and MOA may be exaggerating the significance of this poll based on a hypothetical. After all the suggestion of dropping a nuclear weapon on NK implies a threat via long range missiles that is real and that such a US response would eliminate that threat (which it wouldn’t). The poll itself shows a considerable change when that elimination result is changed from 90 percent probability to 50 percent.

    The real question is not whether nuke use is thinkable by the American public–who have no real control over such events anyway–but rather by those who would make the decision. On that one we already know the answer and it isn’t good. Trump’s biggest donor is someone who thinks we should drop a nuclear bomb on Iran.

    Americans most definitely are ignorant about the rest of the world because they lack the elite obsession with ruling the planetary roost. Rather they have children to feed and mortgages to pay and get a limited and highly skewed picture of other countries from the irresponsible news media. When posing this controversial question the pollsters were asking the wrong people.

    1. Monty

      “Now, there’s one thing you might have noticed I don’t complain about: politicians. Everybody complains about politicians. Everybody says they suck. Well, where do people think these politicians come from? They don’t fall out of the sky. They don’t pass through a membrane from another reality. They come from American parents and American families, American homes, American schools, American churches, American businesses and American universities, and they are elected by American citizens. This is the best we can do folks. This is what we have to offer. It’s what our system produces: Garbage in, garbage out. If you have selfish, ignorant citizens, you’re going to get selfish, ignorant leaders. Term limits ain’t going to do any good; you’re just going to end up with a brand new bunch of selfish, ignorant Americans. So, maybe, maybe, maybe, it’s not the politicians who suck. Maybe something else sucks around here… like, the public. Yeah, the public sucks. There’s a nice campaign slogan for somebody: ‘The Public Sucks. F*ck Hope.”

      1. JohnnyGL

        Disagree. Quit blaming the victims….the public, in this case.

        Elites have been pushing a slow process of enclosure….consolidating control and insulating themselves in the process. Those elites lie to us, constantly, in order to maintain and further that control.

        In this case the specific lies are: 1) N. Korea wants to nuke us. 2) N. Korea CAN nuke us. 3) It’s not because the USG is scaring, provoking and squeezing the life out of them. It’s just because they’re crazy whackos. 4) That our military has the power to stop them from nuking us. 5) We HAVE to use the military because they’re whackos and you can’t negotiate with whackos.

        That’s at least 5 big lies that have to be pushed in order to manufacture consent for war with N. Korea.

        1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

          The question of collective guilt is not so straight forward.

          Sometimes, it is. “You should have known.”

          Other times, the bad guys will attack innocent children in New York, based on that.

      2. Jonathan Holland Becnel

        Substitute “Rich” for “Americans” and…Yeah that makes sense

      3. jrs

        part of the problem with politicians is probably law school and what it creates. And yes part of the problem with the public is propaganda.

        If Trump is actually reelected I’m really very close to “the public sucks” too. It would be unbelievable dire, better to cling and fight for the small hope we still have now. But not f*ck hope, optimism of the will …

        1. neo-realist

          I got to “the public sucks” with the re-election of Bush. It was obvious that Bush lied us into war and got a lot of Americans killed and wounded under false pretenses, but I guess too many Americans wanted to feed into supporting the Commander and Chief in a time of war and found Kerry a little too stiff and unrelatable to pull the lever for.

          Yes, Kerry was robbed in Ohio, but a lot of people pulled the lever for Bush outside of it.

          1. JohnnyGL

            Yeah, I may have my disagreements, but there’s more truth there than I’d like there to be. :)

      4. todde

        Might as well have fallen from the sky.

        I never met or saw a politician until I was in my 30’s working for a billionaire.

        Then I met Senators and my Governor and a slew of Federal and State Representatives. They came by the office to see ‘how I was doing’.

        1. JohnnyGL

          Didn’t you have security to deal with beggars/panhandlers like that? :) Did they slip by because they were wearing suits? :) Security gets confused easily. :)

          1. todde

            I considered them my co-workers, since we all worked for the same guy.

            My Governor was feeding me a line of BS about how the world needed young men like me and what a great guy I was.

            So I told him “Didn’t they tell you I was hired from the Prison Work Release Program.’

            Wish I would of said it right before they took our picture as the look on his face was priceless

  19. anon in so cal

    It’s almost always possible to see Burrowing Owls around the Salton Sea in the Imperial Valley, California, especially at the Sony Bono Salton Sea Wildlife Preserve.

    Happily, “The U.S. House of Representatives Approves $30 Million for Salton Sea Crisis
    Funding to address threat to 1.6 million people and 300 species of birds”

    The Salton Sea is a crucial wetlands for migratory birds.

    1. Tomonthebeach

      The CBS survey is junk research. What would you expect if you surveyed soldiers regarding satisfaction with enlisting a) a year after basic training vs b) while serving in combat? The people surveyed with a debt or genuine gun at their heads might report lower satisfaction with their career choice than those without that Sword of Damocles in their lives.

      Education is an investment, and like many equity investments, interest does not start to noticeably compound for years. However, ask the same person at 45 if they regret their BA, now that the investment is paying big dividends in upward mobility, and you will likely get a significantly more positive response.

  20. Jeff W

    Re: Joe Biden is contractually obligated to receive angel hair pomodoro at every paid speechThe Week

    I’m kind of wondering if Biden is contractually obligated to receive angel hair pomodoro at every paid speech for pretty much the same reason that Van Halen asked for a bowl of M&Ms with all the brown M&Ms removed before every show. (Hint: it has nothing to do with angel hair pasta or brown M&Ms.)

Comments are closed.