2:00PM Water Cooler 7/18/2019

By Lambert Strether of Corrente


“But what is government itself, but the greatest of all reflections on human nature?” –James Madison, Federalist 51

“They had one weapon left and both knew it: treachery.” –Frank Herbert, Dune


“2020 Democratic Presidential Nomination” [RealClearPolitics] (average of five polls). As of July 17: Biden still climbing at 28.4% (27.8), Sanders still steady at 15.0% (15.0%), Warren down sharply at 14.6% (15.0%), Buttigieg steady at 4.8% (4.8%), Harris losing her post-debate bump 12.6% (13.4%), others Brownian motion.

* * *

Booker (D)(1): “Democrats warm to idea of studying reparations” [The Hill]. “Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) on Tuesday told a small group of reporters that he supports legislation sponsored by Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.) and Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas) that would set up a commission to explore reparations, signaling changing attitudes among Democrats on the charged issue. Booker said he “absolutely” thinks he’s getting traction as more Democrats come around to supporting an examination of the issue. “I’m excited that people can really focus past the bluster of people who want to demonize the idea that we should study a way to address specific past economic harms and try to create more economic equality,” Booker, who is running for president, told The Hill. Booker’s bill has 15 co-sponsors in the Senate, and he says he is actively seeking to expand the list…. Sens. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.), Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.), who are all running for the Democratic presidential nomination, have co-sponsored Booker’s bill.”

Sanders (D)(1): “On Medicare for All, Bernie Is Ready to Rumble” [Jacobin]. Sanders: “”=Today I am calling on every Democratic candidate in this election to join me in rejecting money from the insurance and drug companies. Reject that money. Candidates who are not willing to take that pledge should explain to the American people why those… donations are a good investment for the healthcare industry.” • There are times when doing the right thing is also doing the tactically right thing. More than you would think!

Sanders (D)(2): “Sanders Calls for Rivals to Reject Money From Health Care Industry” [Sidney Ember, New York Times]. Must be read to be believed. “… seeking to bring fresh momentum … a small auditorium … seemed intended to garner maximum news media exposure … his well-worn rationale for a single-payer system … seemed as enthusiastic as he has been on the campaign trail … hoots from the audience … hardly broke new ground, even if he seemed to enjoy himself.” • I dunno. Seems to me that a pledge that sorts out who’s servicing the health insurance industry and who isn’t breaks new ground. Anyhow, they hate him. They really hate him.

Sanders (D)(3): “Bernie Sanders, Anti-Imperialism and Venezuela” [Counterpunch]. “A quick perusal of conservative outlets, from the Heritage Foundation to the National Review to Fox News, will find you a litany of articles likening a potential Sanders presidency to an economic implosion à la Venezuela. All other serious Democratic candidates have avoided and even explicitly denounced socialist policies. Elizabeth Warren, for instance, provided Trump with a standing ovation when he denounced socialism during his recent State of the Union Address, and she has described herself as a ‘capitalist to the bone.’ While Sanders himself has continually pointed to Scandinavia as providing inspiration for his policies, critics have sought to seize upon his disposition toward the Venezuelan government as evidence that he would allegedly destroy the U.S. economy ‘because socialism.’ Sanders, however, has never embraced the Venezuelan government — either under former President Hugo Chavez or now under President Nicolas Maduro.” • I suppose the real point of such a comparison would be a capital strike if Sanders wins.

Sanders (D)(4): “U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders honoured with Coast Salish name” [CBC]. “Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders received a Coast Salish name during a campaign visit in Seattle on March 20. In the video posted to YouTube, former Tulalip councillor Deborah Parker presents Sanders with the Lushootseed name dxʷshudičup (pronounced dooh-s-who-dee-choop). ‘We say it four times that carry [it] in the four directions. We name you this name … in the Lushootseed language the translation is, the one lighting the fires for change and unity,’ said Parker in the video. Sanders has focused considerable attention on indigenous issues during his campaign, visiting communities including the Meskwaki territories in Iowa and the Navajo territories in Arizona. He has also appointed Tara Houska, from Couchiching First Nation in Ontario, as his Native American adviser.” ¨• Today is my day to be nice, so I’ll avoid invidious comparisons.

Trump (R)(1): “EXCLUSIVE: Trump says he’s ‘not unhappy’ with racism fight’s result because ‘the race card’ is ‘the only thing they have’ now, telling DailyMail.com his back-and-forth with Pelosi was ‘one of the all-time classics'” [Daily Mail]. “President Donald Trump said Wednesday that he’s ‘not unhappy’ with the result of a political war over his recent comments that Democrats were quick to brand as racist, but he’s not ‘relishing’ the dispute with four women of color, either…. ‘Look, they [the four] played the race card on Nancy Pelosi.’ he said. ‘She then – it’s one of the all-time classics, they played it on Nancy Pelosi! And I came to her defense.’ He added: ‘She then, a week later, played it on me! It was rather amazing.’ … ‘The only thing [Democrats] have, that they can do is, now, play the race card,’ [Trump] said. ‘Which they’ve always done.'” • That’s hardly fair. After all, Joe Biden came out in favor of the public option.

Trump (R)(2): “‘A top-tier priority’: Trump rally highlights NC’s big role in picking next president” [McClatchy]. “Asked if Trump could avoid talking about the ‘go back’ controversy during the rally, [Sen. Thom Tillis] said slyly, as the doors of his elevator closed: ‘I don’t know what you’re talking about.'” • Typically, the candidate takes the high road, and operatives take the low road, to provide the candidate with plausible deniability. Trump is unique, in that he does the opposite (that’s not to say that Pence et al. take a very high road; just that it’s higher than Trump’s). Or, in kayfabe terms, most Presidential candidates seek to be the Face, and make their opponents the Heel. Trump plays the Heel, and quite well, too. Of course, he’s not exactly playing against type.

* * *

“2nd Democratic Primary Debate: See Which Candidates Made The Cut” [NPR]. “The 20-person lineup for the two-night Democratic presidential debate on July 30 and 31 will look familiar, with just one change from last month’s event. Last week, California Rep. Eric Swalwell became the first major candidate to end his White House bid. Montana Gov. Steve Bullock — after only narrowly missing the mark last time — will take his place.” • So Gravel is out. Steak in your cell, Tom! You’ve earned it.

“Obama and Clinton’s bundlers are betting on these 3 candidates” [Politico]. “Big-money Democratic donors have jumped off the sidelines of the presidential race, and three candidates are the clear winners of their support: Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg and Kamala Harris. Each of those three candidates received more than 220 donations from top fundraisers who helped raise at least $100,000 — and sometimes many multiples more — for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 campaign or at least $50,000 for Barack Obama in 2012, according to a POLITICO analysis of Federal Election Commission data. Members of this group of nearly 2,000 bundlers have tapped their personal networks in the past to collectively raise tens of millions of dollars for Democratic campaigns.” • I think Mayo Pete would make an excellent Secretary of Defense in a Biden administration. His expertise with data reminds me of Robert McNamara, and then of course there’s his experience as a driver in Afghanistan. “Where to, Major?” is excellent training for dealing with the military industrial complex.


The House Resolution condemning Trump for “racist comments”:

Read the first page. The preamble, crafted by Democrats, quotes Ronald Reagan extensively. You know, the Ronald Reagan who began his 1980 campaign with a “States Rights” speech at Neshoba County Fair:

Neshoba County is known as the site of one of the most infamous race-related crimes in American history, which took place in 1964 during Freedom Summer in Mississippi, a period of heightened civil rights activity in a voter registration drive. White supremacists brutally murdered three civil rights activists, James Chaney, Andrew Goodman and Michael Schwerner in Philadelphia, the county seat.

Nothing against Neshoba County, but Reagan was surely sending the mother of all dog-whistles with the location and the speech. And this is the man they quote in a resolution condemning “racist comments”? I’m used to a certain level of inconsistency in my politicians, but the current Democrat leadership seems completely unmoored from any principles whatever. You want to do some virtue signaling against racism? Well and good. Why on earth quote Reagan? Would you quote Bill Clinton in a resolution against rape or workplace abuse?

What are the drums saying, Jake? Thread:

Tapper speaks with House centrists on “the squad” and it’s everything. This is good:

The beauty part is that only weeks ago, Pelosi et al. painted a big fat target on Ilhan Omar’s back by passing a resolution condemning her (falsely) for anti-semitism (“It’s all about the benjamins”). Now they have to defend her! It’s as if, whenever they spot a corner, the Democrats have to paint themselves into it.

“Democrats Fear Primary Challenges Like Ohio’s Morgan Harper” [The Intercept]. “[Rep. Joyce Beatty’s] funding is part of a K Street strategy that exploits the large wealth gap persisting in many majority- or plurality-black districts — a gap that makes it much harder for CBC members to raise from wealthy donors the kind of money needed to safely stay in Congress. That, in turn, makes corporate PAC money attractive to fill the gap. CBC members privately bristle when Democrats from wealthy districts announce pledges to forswear corporate PAC money, but still fill their coffers with max-out checks from local millionaires and billionaires in San Francisco or Seattle.” Fair enough, given the givens. More: “But now Beatty, who is 69, is facing a primary challenge from Morgan Harper, a 36-year-old progressive who leapfrogged the usual path to a seat, threatening the fragile machinery constructed in Ohio to guide and constrain party politics…. Harper is running on her own, without any assistance from Justice Democrats or other national progressive groups.” • And now this little sentence slips by: “Harper’s time at elite colleges and universities, as well as her successful career, coupled with her fiancé’s political background and his job with the Clinton-connected global consulting firm Teneo, gives her access to a universe of contributors that may help get a campaign off the ground fast, before a small-dollar network can be built.” • Teneo? Really? “Consulting firm” my sweet Aunt Fanny. More like influence peddling.

Stats Watch

Philadelphia Fed Business Outlook Survey, July 2019: “Regional Feds don’t state their sample sizes for individual manufacturing reports but the big jump in July that follows a big slump in June suggests that respondent participation in the Philly Fed’s recent samples may be on the thin side” [Econoday]. • This is the first methodological attack on the surveys that I can recall seeing at Econoday. Remember that the divergence of surveys and data is a continuing scandal (at least in my mind).

Leading Indicators, June 2019: “Slow growth for the rest of the year is the signal from the index of leading economic indicators which fell” unexpectedly [Econoday].

Jobless Claims, week of July 13. 2019: “New jobless claims are signaling substantial strength in the labor market” [Econdoay]. “This report offers a significant signal that the labor market, after June’s sharp 224,000 rise in nonfarm payrolls, is strong and growing at the same time it would appear that the Federal Reserve, at its month-end policy meeting, will be cutting interest rates.”

Manufacturing: “Are Cellphones a Flight Danger? They Are on These Boeing Jets” [Bloomberg]. “U.S. government officials in 2014 revealed an alarming safety issue: Passenger cellphones and other types of radio signals could pose a crash threat to some models of Boeing 737 and 777 airplanes. More than 1,300 jets registered in the U.S. were equipped with cockpit screens vulnerable to interference from Wi-Fi, mobile phones and even outside frequencies such as weather radar, according to the Federal Aviation Administration, which gave airlines until November 2019 to replace the units made by Honeywell International Inc.” • Five years seems rather a long time.

The Bezzle: “The Sad Truth About Sleep-Tracking Devices and Apps” [New York Times]. “[In a] recent study from Rush University Medical College and Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine [, researchers noticed] patients complaining about sleep data collected by apps and devices from Nike, Apple, Fitbit and others. In their study, the researchers warned that sleep-tracking tech could provide inaccurate data and worsen insomnia by making people obsessed with achieving perfect slumber, a condition they called orthosomnia. It was one of the latest pieces of research supporting the idea that health apps don’t necessarily make people healthier.” • Well, that wouldn’t fit with a subscription model, would it?

The Biosphere

“U.S. military consumes more hydrocarbons than most countries — massive hidden impact on climate” [Science Daily]. “The researchers’ examination of the US military ‘carbon boot-print’ started with the US Defense Logistics Agency — Energy (DLA-E), a powerful yet virtually unresearched sub-agency within the larger Defense Logistics Agency. It is the primary purchase-point for hydrocarbon-based fuels for the US Military, and a powerful actor in the global oil market, with the fuels it delivers powering everything from routine base operations in the USA to forward operating bases in Afghanistan. ‘An important way to cool off the furnace of the climate emergency is to turn off vast sections of the military machine,’ added [Dr Benjamin Neimark, Associate Director of the Pentland Centre for Sustainability in Business at Lancaster]. ‘This will have not only the immediate effect of reducing emissions in the here-and-now, but create a disincentive in developing new hydrocarbon infrastructure integral to US military operations.'”

“Corrections to ocean-temperature record resolve puzzling regional differences” [Nature]. “Initially, SST estimates were made using wooden buckets that were thrown over the sides of ships, filled with water and hauled up. The temperature of the water in the buckets was then measured using a thermometer. While the buckets were being hoisted up, evaporative cooling and exposure to ambient conditions would often reduce the temperature of the water by a few tenths of a degree Celsius. This bias was exacerbated by a transition to poorly insulated canvas buckets in the late nineteenth century, and these buckets continued to be the main means of SST measurement until the period of the Second World War. Accounting for the cold bias in bucket measurements is the single largest adjustment to the ocean (and global) temperature record. Without the adjustment, the estimated rate of ocean warming from 1850 to the present would be about 30% higher.” • Then fix it, dear Henry.

“Warming climate likely leading to larger California fires” [Ars Technica]. “Overall, the average area burned by fires each year in California has increased by a factor of five since 1972—a remarkable increase. However, this is mostly due to an even larger increase in the forested parts of the state, as the central and southern coastal regions haven’t really seen an increase…. California has gotten warmer over this time period, and at a rate that matches climate model simulations of human-caused warming. There isn’t a clear trend in precipitation, though mountain snowpack has declined with rising temperatures. But the temperature change alone can have a huge impact on fire conditions. Hotter air sucks more moisture out of the soil and out of the vegetation that the fire burns.”

“Former UK intelligence chief: Extinction Rebellion wants to ‘break up the state'” [Guardian]. “In a report published Wednesday by Policy Exchange, Richard Walton, former head of the Metropolitan Police Counter Terrorism Command, accused Extinction Rebellion of seeking ‘the breakdown of democracy and the state.’ ‘It’s very clear that they’re a hard core anarchist group that want to basically break up our democracy,’ he told BBC’s today program. ‘It’s anarchism with a smile.'” • There’s that “our democracy” phrase again.

“Climate Solution: Use Carbon Dioxide to Generate Electricity” [Scientific American]. “One method explored in the past decade might now be a step closer to becoming practical, as a result of a new computer simulation study. The process would involve pumping airborne CO2 down into methane hydrates—large deposits of icy water and methane right under the seafloor, beneath water 500 to 1,000 meters deep—where the gas would be permanently stored, or sequestered. The incoming CO2 would push out the methane, which would be piped to the surface and burned to generate electricity, to power the sequestration operation or to bring in revenue to pay for it. Many methane hydrate deposits exist along the Gulf of Mexico shore and other coastlines. Large power plants and industrial facilities that emit CO2 also line the Gulf Coast, so one option would be to capture the gas directly from nearby smokestacks, keeping it out of the atmosphere to begin with. And the plants and industries themselves could provide a ready market for the electricity generated.” • Hmm. Sounds less insane than BECCS. Readers?


“How I transformed my crappy laptop into a powerful gaming machine” [The Outline (UserFriendly)]. “I have seen the future of gaming on my dying MacBook Air. Even though it’s six years old, most of its vents are clogged with gunk-dust, and it’s a grizzled survivor of the Great Tea Spill of 2017, it can now run most PC games with the specs maxed out and somehow not burst into flames. This is all thanks to a new-ish cloud streaming service that will most likely change gaming as we know it…. Specifically, the cloud service I’ve been using is Nvidia’s GeForce Now… It’s one of several similar services being developed by a number of corporations that are tossing unsettling amounts of money and resources at the idea… Still, this kind of thing could be a democratizing force for PC gaming, which is typically limited to enthusiasts with ~$1,000 to burn on a dedicated desktop machine. It’s possible that this means console dominance might also gradually decline over the years, or at the very least change significantly from the current Giant Box Every Five Years model…. A recent study suggests that music streaming has a pretty high carbon footprint, as it turns out that operating giant data centers burns a tremendous amount of energy. Game streaming could be just as bad, if not worse.” • So, Big Stream is just around the corner for gaming. I don’t know how to net out the carbon footprint for data centers with the carbon footprint of manufacturing new laptops (and consoles) however.

The 420

“Booming Demand for CBD Is Making Hemp the Cannabis Cash Crop” [Bloomberg]. “But the business of getting people high is only part of the cannabis craze. Marijuana is still banned for recreational use across much of the world, and even medical access, while expanding, is restricted in most countries. So players in the $340 billion global cannabis market are turning their attention to weed’s less-regulated cousin, hemp…. [B]usinesses are buzzed about its other defining characteristic: a higher concentration of cannibidiol, or CBD, a nonpsychoactive chemical at the center of a wellness trend sweeping the U.S. and expanding worldwide…. CBD is being pitched as an all-natural way to alleviate ailments including pain, inflammation, anxiety, and insomnia. Despite a paucity of science to back up such claims, CBD has become a coveted ingredient in a host of consumer products, from skin lotions to sparkling water to tinctures to dog biscuits. The surge in demand is fueling a global Green Rush, even in countries where a legal market for cannabis products was unthinkable just a few years ago.” • I should really file this under The Bezzle.

Guillotine Watch

“Jeff Bezos: I spend my billions on space because we’re destroying Earth” [CNBC]. Bezos: “We humans have to go to space if we are going to continue to have a thriving civilization. We have become big as a population, as a species, and this planet is relatively small. We see it in things like climate change and pollution and heavy industry. We are in the process of destroying this planet. And we have sent robotic probes to every planet in the solar system — this is the good one. So, we have to preserve this planet…. Eventually it will be much cheaper and simpler to make really complicated things, like microprocessors and everything, in space and then send those highly complex manufactured objects back down to earth, so that we don’t have the big factories and pollution generating industries that make those things now on Earth. And Earth can be zoned residential.” • I dunno. Not sure how the ozone layer is going to react to having our supply chain punched through it.

News of the Wired

“Perky ‘Canada’ Has Own Government, Laws” [The Onion]. • From 2016, still germane.

Imagine! An in-house corporate library! Who knew such things were possible?

Email? No.

“The man who started ‘Storm Area 51’ campaign comes forward after hundreds of thousands sign up for his ‘joke’ plans to invade the air force base” [Daily Mail]. “The man who started the viral ‘Storm Area 51’ internet craze has broken cover and owned up to the ‘joke’ in a TV interview. Matty Roberts, who did not reveal his age or home town, told Nevada’s KLAS-TV via video call on Wednesday he was amazed at how his hoax took off. Roberts said he had decided to come forward out of fear the FBI would come to question him over the joke after millions of UFO conspiracy theory fans signed up to invade the top-secret US Air Force base.” • Storming Area 51 seemed as sensible to me as anything else, these days. But: “The last known person who went hunting for aliens at Area 51 was shot dead by guards back in January.” Not a good lock for Roberts if that happens. But “shot dead”? Really?

* * *

Readers, feel free to contact me at lambert [UNDERSCORE] strether [DOT] corrente [AT] yahoo [DOT] com, with (a) links, and even better (b) sources I should curate regularly, (c) how to send me a check if you are allergic to PayPal, and (d) to find out how to send me images of plants. Vegetables are fine! Fungi are deemed to be honorary plants! If you want your handle to appear as a credit, please place it at the start of your mail in parentheses: (thus). Otherwise, I will anonymize by using your initials. See the previous Water Cooler (with plant) here. Today’s plant (MF):

MF writes: “While taking a walk in Griffith Park I noticed what appeared to be flowers hovering in midair. As I approached nearer to the bend in the trail I was walking on, I saw that the hovering flowers were actually supported by long, thin stems. I’d been fooled by distance, angle, and failing eyesight.”

* * *

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About Lambert Strether

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


  1. Wukchumni

    The faux roundup of aliens in Area 50 was typical of this awful administration. Mess with people’s lives via lies.

    1. Tomonthebeach

      Half a million idiots fell for it. Maybe Trump’s base is not so hard to grasp after all.

      1. ambrit

        The problem is, that this used to be the Democrat Parties’ base. With the rise of the DLC, the neo-liberal Democrat politicos threw them away in favour of the Cloth Coat Republicans of an earlier era.
        Bill Clinton basically ran a Republican Lite administration. It was downhill from there. I am still mystified by Madame Clinton’s abortive medical access push. ‘Things’ there don’t seem to add up.

    1. Oregoncharles

      I think they’re probably Queen Anne’s Lace, wild carrot (yes, really) – though the detail isn’t enough to be sure. They’re blooming now in my garden, and all over the place. They’re the reason you can’t grow carrot seed here short of an enclosure: it will cross with the wild ones.

      However, they’re beautiful and good for beneficial insects, so more power to ’em.

  2. Off The Street

    Those old laptops, or any other electronic device, say, a dialysis machine, can be converted to a new power source. Investors are lining up to get in on the ground floor of the new walking standup desk with built-in human-powered dynamo. Now customers can decide how much power they need and then walk it off.
    Cut to hamster car ad.

  3. NotTimothyGeithner

    The current Democratic leadership is very much the party of Bill Clinton. Their main problem with Trump is he says the quiet parts aloud. Its a more genteel variety. Not every plantation owner acted as if the house slaves were slaves. Sometimes they treated them like the staff at an imagined British manor.

    My best guess is Obama is fundamentally a Bookerist in nature even if its not articulated as I think that kind of philosophy isn’t discussed anymore. MLK’s real contribution to American society wasn’t Civil Rights (he wasn’t very much a part of it, but he didn’t invent it) as much as defeating Bookerism and Garveyism and cementing W.E.B. Dubois and his philosophy as where Black America should be. The members of “The Squad” are not Booker adherents in any form, and my gut is self styled liberal elites are fine with token minorities as long as they are okay with certain barriers to entry.

    I think Leo DiCaprio’s character in Django isn’t terribly far removed from the actual opinions of elites, even coastal ones. In the movie, Leo corrects the behavior of white people towards special blacks, Jaime Foxx’s character Django. Team Blue Party elites embracing Reagan’s dog whistling is okay because Reagan provided room for the exceptional token person. “The Squad” is four minority women acting as if they are Representatives, hence Pelosi’s and unnamed Democratic sources recent outrage.

    1. JBird4049

      The Squad” is four minority women acting as if they are Representatives, hence Pelosi’s and unnamed Democratic sources recent outrage.

      So Godmother Pelosi and Washington Crime Family are mad at the Squad for actually doing the their jobs? The ones for which they were elected to do? Or are they mad that the squad is not practicing omertà as was done for the Jeffrey “the Procurer” Epstein? It’s a good thing that the Family does not l really have someone like Salvatore “Sammy the Bull” Gravano on staff. Or maybe all the whacking is done out of country?

      We are all living in a crime dramedy or maybe one of those bad 70s comedies movies of the week where the hapless American tourists are wondering about in the coup of the month.

      As I have said before, seeing this might be funny, if not for seeing the consequences for far too many (poor) people.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        So Godmother Pelosi and Washington Crime Family are mad at the Squad for actually doing the their jobs?

        This. And remember Congress critters doing their jobs is a constant reminder of Team Blue’s paucity of effort over the last two decades.

        AOC is a bit of a natural, but she’s not inventing anything and she’s not the only bloke who can speak in DC. She’s a constant reminder that the Democratic Party’s problem hasn’t been messaging but message. Prior to “OMG Russia”, Democrats loved to blame the failure of messaging and voters not understanding how “free trade” worked for their own electoral failures. After all, AOC is making headlines over how the Fed bases interest rates around unemployment. What does that have to do with Roger Clemens use of steroids? Or how about when Pelosi held a faux committee hearing because Rush Limbaugh said horrible things about a white Georgetown alum? This is potentially Nancy’s greatest accomplishment.

        1. Lambert Strether Post author

          > OMG Russia

          That’s not the message any more. Do try to keep up. The message is “Fascism!” Which isn’t something to be flippant about, but “crying wolf” survives as a cliché because it expresses a truth.

    2. dcblogger

      on what planet was MLK Jr not very much part of the civil rights movement? Certainly he did not invent it, but he played a very large role in freeing us from Jim Crow.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        If you were more aware of the history of the Civil Rights movement, you would be aware of the efforts in the 1920’s which led directly to the various civil and voting rights acts of the 1950’s and 60’s. Though King offered moral support to various efforts, he wasn’t instrumental. The organizational capacity and efforts who aren’t recognized were done without the efforts of a great man.

        MLK didn’t come down from the mountain and tell everyone to stop being racist which is often the way he portrayed. Its not a stretch by any measure to declare that the dismantling of Jim Crow as we know was baked in without MLK. Rather MLK was directly responsible for selecting a winner of where Black Americans fit in. The W.E.B. Dubois option wasn’t baked in. We had the Cosby option (Booker T Washington) and Garveyism which would be more of a radical separation.

        If you are wondering what planet, the planet Earth would be the correct answer.

  4. David Carl Grimes

    With regards to Teneo, I wonder how they are doing considering that the Clintons are no longer in power and are not in the running for anything at the moment.

    1. edmondo

      It’s only a year until the Democratic Party convention. She is tanned, rested and ready! And the super-delegates are still smitten with her.

      Can she pull a Lazarus and come back from the dead?

        1. Lambert Strether Post author

          Not, I think, as a candidate, but as a power broker. I would imagine that she could, for example, sway a number of Warren supporters from Warren to Biden.

  5. Louis Fyne

    Re: methane hydrates/injecting CO2 in the earth

    The UN’s IPCC already forecasted a CO2-mitigation scenario heavily using geoengineering like CO2 injection….its baseline case assumes that such geoengineering would also require a 400%+ rise in the use of fission by 2050 versus 2010 levels.

    Just saying what the mainstream press left out of its news reports. Don’t shoot the messenger.


  6. DJG

    Lambert: I’m glad that you mentioned Neshoba and Philadelphia, MS, because I hesitated. And, naturally, when it comes to identity politics (as in going on and on about who isn’t a real American), the South has led the way again. This part of Southern Heritage that seems never to go away, now does it?

    Next up: The War between the States. Yankee aggression about tariffs.

    So we have Trump having his Philadelphia, MS, moment in the South and the Democrats evoking Saint Ronnie, the President of Change Admired by Obama.

    A swamp.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      > because I hesitated

      Why did you hesitate? (I don’t think, though, that “the South leads the way” is granular enough. The Slave Power didn’t equal the South, and the capitalist North was not without it’s own problems — as Reconstruction showed!

    2. Pavel

      I am sadly old enough and enough of a politics junkie to remember Bill Clinton and Al Gore campaign material based on the Confederate flag, in an attempt to get the Southern good ole boy vote.

      Breathtaking hypocrisy by the Dems. But what else is new?

      1. foghorn longhorn

        The dems owned the south until 1994, which was billerys first mid-term election.
        This was, of course, after hillary had tried to reform healthcare as we know it.
        Texas had a dem woman gov at the time (RIP Governor Ann) who once said of the younger bush the stupid, “he was born with a silver boot in his mouth”. But, alas, she too was a victim of the clinton curse.

        1. Librarian Guy

          Bill went well beyond Confederate flags. In Joan Didion’s fine book Political Fictions, she covers Bill & Hil’ having convict prison labor (nearly all black in Arkansas, unsurprisingly) shipped out to the Gov’s mansion just before some important Southern primaries, so they could be photographed with the “free” (financially) Slave labor. It sent the right message to Southern voters about who should be kept in their place, and the rest is history. (Oh yeah, the Didion book is non-fiction. And she’s fair to the Clintons, very down on the RePugs when they get to the whole Whitewater- Lewinsky thing)

        2. Lambert Strether Post author

          > he was born with a silver boot in his mouth

          Poor George, he can’t hxelp it — he was born with a silver foot in his mouth. —Ann Richards

          > The dems owned the south until 1994, which was billerys first mid-term election.

          I believe that Richard Nixon (gawd rest his soul, if any) started the break-up of the Solid South in 1968, which was a direct result of the Civil Rights movement enfranchising blacks. So 1994 is late.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      Most of the bits like the NH poll readers will already be familiar with. This is not so far off:

      Sanders’s original strategy was probably to ride his 2016 base and his money machine to first or second place and then go mano a mano against fellow septuagenarian Joe Biden over issues of ideology and electability. But the landscape has grown more complicated, and the question is whether Bernie can find a campaign tone more subtle than shouting, and a path to the nomination more nuanced than a direct assault across scorched ground.

      Translating: “the landscape has grown more complicated”: The DNC spread the field with 20 candidates

      Translating: “whether Bernie can find a campaign tone more subtle than shouting”: The press ins’t going to show Sanders doing anything but shout, and all the photos will show that, too. (Granted, the stuff that floats by on Twitter has a strong bias towards him, and plenty is campaign generated, but Sanders does exhibit a range of tone. He does plenty of hugging for example. He can even crack a joke! (This is the old “would you have a beer with him?” schtick the press runs.

      Still, no point fussing! The campaign has to manage the press!

    2. JCC

      Anything said by Sidney Ember needs to be taken with somewhat more than a grain of salt. I think Jimmy Dore did a much more factual hit job on her that she will ever be capable of doing on Sanders.

      Her advantage is her platform, unfortunately a pretty big one compared to Dore’s subscription numbers, but Dore offers far more honest, fact-based, criticism.


      1. Procopius

        I liked Dore at first, when I saw his shows with Mark Blyth, but I’ve gradually reached the point where I can’t stand him. He laughs at his own jokes. What’s with that panel of three people he turns to from time to time?

        1. drumlin woodchuckles

          That panel of three people is his Amen Corner.

          If you only watch a little of Dore at rare intervals, you can avoid getting tired of his ” beat the fading stain where a dead horse used to be” style.

  7. toshiro_mifune

    Nvidia’s GeForce Now…

    Isn’t this really just a way to force all games to a subscription model?

    1. Louis Fyne

      yes. It worked for Adobe.

      the subscription (v. hardware) model decreases the number of gamers “age-ing out” and brings down costs for teens.

      $1,000+ gaming rig when you’re a parent w/2 kids whether for you or your kids = no way. Monthly subscription = easier to say yes.

      1. Arizona Slim

        It worked for Adobe? Really?

        If so, then why am I seeing a whole raft of YouTube videos on how photographers can cut the Adobe cord?

        In the interest of full disclosure, I am not using Lightroom to edit my photos.

        1. toshiro_mifune

          Yeah – I’m one of those who abandoned Lightroom when they went subscription (and Apple killed Aperture). I know there’s a lot of grumbling about it in the photo world.
          I suppose a subscription model would make sense for a big shop, with lots of desks, that can swap licenses around as needed and never have to worry about updates/upgrades/etc. For single users though the long term costs are pretty high.

        2. Geo

          Unfortunately, that’s not an option for a lot of us who do more than photos. For video and motion graphics the Adobe Suite is still an essential tool. Blackmagic, Resolve is getting great (in some ways better) but still lacks “every day tools” like Illustrator which is needed for most motion graphics work. And, maybe it’s just my familiarity with Adobe (been using it since ‘98) but the workflow is much, much faster than Resolve.

          So, I’m stuck in the subscription model for now.

      2. toshiro_mifune

        IDK – I suppose that is a point in their favor. But a lot of what attracts people to PC gaming (other than not wanting to be a dirty console gaming peasant) is the customization and ability to modify. Not just the hardware but the software as well. I just cant see a streaming service allowing mods on games, all those custom levels, updates and add-ins. That would be a lot to lose from PC gaming

        1. pictboy3

          Not only that, but you run into very big latency problems when you start to talk about online multiplayer games. Right now, you have (if it’s designed semi-decently) your computer sending your inputs to a server, where the server processes that information and how it affects another player, which then sends the information back to you. Turning to a streaming games service means you would almost double that transit time, and it would introduce input lag, where your controls take more time to affect your in game avatar. Input lag with variable times is a death sentence for any sort of competitive game.

          For that reason, and for the modding concerns that toshiro said, I don’t see games streaming ever being more than an expensive flop that Google abandons after a couple years.

          1. ChrisPacific

            Well really you’re dealing with input lag anyway in online multiplayer scenarios, as anybody who has experienced lag spikes knows. It’s the server’s view of the universe that matters, and while a good game client might appear more responsive, the server round trip is still a hard cap on your reflex time.

            Granted in a streaming model you are working your Internet connection a lot harder, but if it’s large enough to handle both a streamed interface and UI/game state updates without performance impact then I don’t see that it would make too much difference. That’s probably only true for a subset of gamers today, so it’s partly a bet on Internet speeds and reliability continuing to increase and become more consistent across the community.

            I do agree that it’s likely to remain a niche service, targeted at gamers that aspire to play with high-end settings but don’t have the budget to support it, and that having your own rig will always be more flexible. But the flip side of flexibility and customization is that it requires a higher level of knowledge and there are a lot more ways in which things can go wrong, so some people might prefer the streaming model for that reason. If you are streaming then it’s far less likely that you will be affected by the kind of “game breaking for 0.1% of users including me for as-yet-unknown reasons” bug that PC games are prone to.

            1. Greg

              It’s been my experience that we hit a plateau in hardware requirements a few years ago anyway.
              Because I don’t do 4k (my eyes dont see 4k so it’d be wasted) and I don’t do VR, there haven’t been fancy new games that need more than three year old hardware.

              And that’s not even getting into the enormous catalogue that’s developed of intentionally *not* graphically intensive gaming.

              ETA: which is really just GPUs catching up with CPUs – we hit the max needed on CPUs ages ago, and multithreading hasn’t added much.

              1. JohnnySacks

                True, ‘older’ PC platform games run fine on 6 year old hardware, very modest by today’s standards and far from the need to buy a $1000 PC to support. And unlike that $500+ single purpose console and perpetual subscription payments, I get to actually do a lot of other things with it. I think there’s a problem with exploiting eye candy vs. producing the actual creative content of games. Just reloaded HalfLife 2 for a trip down memory lane and was pleasantly surprised at how enjoyable it was. A DVD I bought and now own for I can’t remember how little many years ago, what an insane concept nowadays.
                All this internet of shit for everything noise is nothing more than a way to squeeze as much money from as may people as possible for as long as possible masquerading as innovation.

    2. Kurtismayfield

      That and you are going to suffer if playing multiplayer.. if you are doing all the computations off site, you are going to have to ping that server, then the off site server pings another server, etc. It also requires a Hardline Ethernet connection.. no wifi. Probably to help with latency.

      And the subscription model is basically here to stay for gaming. EA releases a new sports game every year and people buy it. The publishers constantly release DLC that you have to keep updated with. Companies kill off the servers for multiplayer games a few years after so that they can sell the new version. That boat left port years ago.

  8. JerryDenim

    I don’t have any additional insights on this story, but I just thought I’d throw it over the transom for Lambert.


    The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has alerted operators of the Airbus A321neo of a potential “excessive pitch” problem. The issue, as many aviation professionals have noted, is similar to the one that Boeing’s MCAS software on the 737 MAX was developed to address.

    Airbus has issued a “temporary revision” to its A321neo flight manuals in order to prevent the aircraft from possibly reaching excessive pitch attitudes, according to a report by FlightGlobal. The revisions have been necessitated after analysis of the aircraft’s elevator and aileron computer, the EASA disclosed in an Airworthiness Directive (AD) on July 17, 2019.

    I made some remarks early in the twin 737 Max coverage to the effect of Airbus passenger jets have stall prevention features that make the 737 Max MCAS system look positively kitten-like by comparison. Heavily automated planes that occasionally go haywire, pilot deskilling, crapification and greedy, cost-cutting executives are industry-wide problems that will persist long after the 737 Max disasters are forgotten. These problems deserve to be called out by name. Pretending the Max disasters were some unique anomaly that were only possible at Boeing with certain personalities in charge does a disservice to the victims and the public good. These topics should be addressed both individually and collectively where appropriate, such as when certain global trends such as shareholder value capitalism drive multiple negative behaviors inside of an industry. I’m still hoping to see the executives at Boeing, Lion Air, and Ethiopian Airlines punished but honestly if anyone in charge of anything gets punished it looks like it will likely be a scapegoat from Boeing management. It looks like business as usual will continue at Lion Air and Ethiopian. I’ve rightfully heard a lot of talk of about MCAS software, nine-dollar an hour outsourced engineers, and Boeing malfeasance but I’m not seeing a lot of press focusing on pilot training standards or making modern passenger jets easier to override and manually control. If anything it seems the entire industry wants to move the opposite direction after the Max disasters and I find that troubling.

    1. Tim

      No new required pilot training on the A321neo in concert with the flight manual update?

      So Boeing is going about this the wrong way. They should just eliminate MCAS and update the flight manual. Done.

    2. VietnamVet

      This is the crux of cost cutting and automation. I was a participant in the use of computers to replace typing pools way back when. Then as now, the goal is to automate work in order to move the money paid for labor to the credentialed class and oligarchs instead. Bill Gates just moved down to third place as the world’s richest man because he failed to do the next great thing after office automation, putting a computer in everyone’s hand.

      Truckers, train crews and pilots earn their wages. Automation is energy intensive from the server farms, communications to the onboard computers. Airbus is farther along in the process but it definitely has a problem when automatic flight control systems fail and dump a very hazardous situation in the lap of a very ill-equipped inexperience systems manager. So far, the conversion is proceeding full speed ahead. But intuitively, instead of autonomous truck fleets, driver-less taxis or delivery drones flying overhead everywhere, it seems that it would be cheaper and less disruptive to build out land based electric rail systems, keep today’s transportation system under the control of trained well paid professionals with safety system backups but significant decrease the use of fossil fuels, and depend on walking a lot more if humans are going to survive climate change.

      1. JerryDenim

        “…it seems that it would be cheaper and less disruptive to build out land based electric rail systems, keep today’s transportation system under the control of trained well paid professionals with safety system backups”

        I could definitely get behind that idea but in the instance of a well-run aviation operation, two pilots with equal certification and training with near-equal experience are the backup system. The non-flying pilot backs up the flying pilot and someone is always in control or ready to take control from the automation at the first sign of trouble. Hard to do when airlines are throwing 200 hour piston pilots into the right seat of modern jetliners.

        Your very superior plan means not as much money to be made for elites though, so I won’t be holding my breath. It seems to me another game of TINA is underway in aviation with the automobile industry being next in line. Deskill and enfeeble the human population making them dependent on automation, regardless of it’s safety or efficiency, then loudly proclaim, “What else can we do? The lousy humans have forgotten how to [fill in the blank]. “

  9. Another Scott

    Democrats want to study reparations. Do they want to loose the election? I don’t understand why anyone thinks this is good politics, especially in combination with the apparent growing consensus on immigration. Trump will brand them as the party of reparations and open boarders, and that is what the election will be about, and they’ll likely lose.

    If they want to do something about reducing economic inequality, how about they do something to increase their income, like raising the minimum wage? Or lower their cost of living through housing, healthcare and education policies?

    1. Big River Bandido

      Oh, but the House Democrats are all set to pass a bill that will raise the minimum wage to $15 — six years from now.

      1. Eureka Springs

        13 years ago my first response to fight for 15 was – make it 22.50. Now I say let the fight for 35.00 begin, and mean it. And as always, tax the hell out of the rich.

    2. Riverboat Grambler

      Funny how the Dems desperately shy away from M4A as “pie-in-the-sky” and impractical, but suddenly we’re talking about reparations as if that’s doable. It is a brazen attempt to keep the working class divided and squabbling.

      1. drumlin woodchuckles

        I hadn’t thought of this. Of course racial reparations is so much less do-able than M4A that the motives behind bringing it up can only be treacherous and perfidious.

        Putting the spotlight on reparations is meant to get those cameras away from M4A, for example.

    3. Louis Fyne

      If the Democrats study reparations for slavery, they should also study reparations for all the military draftees pre-GI Bill. The treatment of Civil War (working class) draftees was particularly bad (obviously not as bad as slavery)

      Just saying that the top 1% have been horrible to the bottom 50%+ since time immemorial and the Left should focus on class, not identity…as someone whose ancestors on both sides didn’t set foot in the Western Hemisphere until the 20th century.

    4. Alfred

      I agree. IMO, if the Booker bill gets any further along at all in the legislative process, sweeping Democratic losses across all branches will become a certainty.

      1. Geo

        Well, “sweeping Democratic losses across all branches” is Pelosi’s specialty. She’s got a proven track record in that.

    5. martell

      Yes, unless I’ve seriously misjudged the situation, reparations for slavery isn’t just a loser politically, it’s a costly loser, partly because it would likely fracture class based alliances along racial fault lines. I suppose it might be a lost cause worth fighting for if the moral case were strong. But it isn’t. True, there are some similarities with Holocaust reparations and reparations for WWII internment of Japanese Americans, but there are several relevant dissimilarities too, as others in the commentariat have pointed out. To make matters worse, reparations advocates often reason about this issue in such a way as to imply that individuals are guilty of injustices solely on the basis of racial identity. My own view is that such reasoning is racist and has no place in public discourse. So, the moral argument for reparations is not only weak but also rather ugly.

    6. hunkerdown

      It’s good politics for the market demographics they are targeting right now with mainstream media. The whole purpose of the staggered primary season is politics, from the Greek “poly”, many, and the French “tête”, face: to find the most effective communications manager to confabulate a narrative that rationalizes the interests of this professional association that fancies itself a political party. When liberals say Sanders “isn’t a Democrat”, that’s part of it.

      1. drumlin woodchuckles

        Sanders could offer an ammendment to the Let’s-Study-Reparations bill. He could offer an ammendment requiring reparations for the people of Appalachia to be studied at the same time as reparations for the people of Slavery.

    1. Alfred

      Clearly, there is something in Area 51 that is far scarier than aliens or UFOs. Who knows? It might be our future.

    2. Synapsid

      foghorn longhorn, Alfred,

      Tell you what: There’s a Trident sub base at Bangor, on the Hood Canal west of Seattle. Just a known base for nuclear subs that can launch the Trident II, ballistic missiles that can hit anywhere on the planet. No weapons research, no hidden aliens–just the US Navy and US Marines and a whole lot of infrastructure.

      Some fine day, you go out and try to get through the base defenses. Make sure you leave designated powers of attorney with a good lawyer.

  10. dearieme

    Big-money Democratic donors have jumped off the sidelines of the presidential race, and three candidates are the clear winners of their support: Joe Biden, Pete Buttigieg and Kamala Harris

    A codger whose mind seems to ramble as much as his hands; Bottygig of South Bend; and a politician who really can be called a harlot.

    And they could have had Tulsi. Fools! Or Knaves!

    And if we get a big stock market crash and the start of a depression one of these tools might win.

    1. John

      Big money democrats …
      I would not have put it in quite dearime’s terms but I agree. How do they, for some meaning of they, make their choices? I did not vote for president in 2016 and might not do so again.

      Tulsi 2020

  11. DonCoyote

    I don’t know if Lambert ever posted it, but given her latest offering in WC today, it’s worth reposting Katie Halper’s takedown of Sydney Ember’s Bernie Sanders coverage in the NYT:

    Ember has a multi-prong approach to undermining Sanders: She went to great lengths to avoid calling him the frontrunner until he was “no longer” one; she attributes his political positions to attention-getting, self-serving ulterior motives; frames even his victories and the popularity of his ideas as weaknesses; cherry-picks polls; presents opinions as facts (claiming he’s “outflanked on the left by rising stars like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Ayanna Pressley and Beto O’Rourke”); and creates false equivalency between Sanders and Donald Trump.

    There is much more documented there, including Ember’s background (finance) and curious choice (and framing) of sources; I encourage everyone who hasn’t seen it to have a look.

    1. Aumua

      Yet we get the same kind of awful picture of Sanders at the top of that article too. You would think there are no pictures of the guy where he isn’t frowning, looking constipated or disheveled.

    2. WheresOurTeddy

      I’m so old I can still remember when establishment hitpieces weren’t so hamfisted and absurd

  12. Michael Fiorillo

    “Why on earth quote Reagan?”

    1. To appeal to suburban Republicans (the conscious and likely ostensible reason).

    2. To demonstrate to everyone that you’ve learned nothing, and are willing to do anything to avoid a class-based program (the real reason).

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      On #1, yes, “as I’ve been saying.” But holy moley, did they have to be that crass? I also don’t believe for a minute it will work.

      On #2, yes, I like the idea of a demonstration of ritual fealty to the donors, rather like yubitsume.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        Or #2: They really like Reagan. The rush to declare the Trump’s Syrian bombing Presidential was the tell.

  13. Summer

    RE:”CBD is being pitched as an all-natural way to alleviate ailments including pain, inflammation, anxiety, and insomnia. Despite a paucity of science to back up such claims…”

    There was a study that showed the therapeutic properties of Mary Jane aren’t the same when you start separating the canniboids. Would have to dig it up.
    They work in conjunction. Can’t be afraid of the “high”

    1. Yves Smith

      Yes, that’s one suspicion, that CBD isn’t produced at all consistently and a lot of the results may be due to THC being in the oil.

      Also how many of these “studies” are placebo controlled? Placebo effect is significant for anti-depressants.

    2. Riverboat Grambler

      I work at a tobacco/vape/head shop in WI (not a legal state) that’s been around since the mid-90’s. We’ve been carrying “Diet Weed” since it’s been legal and it’s currently our most profitable department. That’s not saying TOO much; last year it was Juul. The market is getting pretty saturated with CBD shops popping up all over town (including one started by a former employee right next door to our shop, hooray capitalism). Looking a little bubble-y from where I’m standing; I’m glad my store sells all manner of other tobacco/vape items. We’ll see how many of those stores hang on selling only that. I highly doubt it will be as popular once we’re a legal state, which unfortunately won’t be anytime soon in WI with our Republican legislature and centrist Dem governor.

      As far as the substance itself, I would not call it snake-oil, nor a cure-all. I have only anecdotal evidence, but I’ve tried the tinctures and the roll-on topical stuff, as well as the gummies. I can tell that my lower back is gonna be a problem when I’m older (currently thirty) and I’ll apply the topical stuff when it’s feeling crappy and it makes it feel much better. I’ve talked to a fair number of old people who’ve tried it (diet weed is mostly good for recommending to seniors who grew up fearing the devil’s lettuce) and some say it’s worked amazing, others (like my Grandma) who say it only helps with certain pains.

      Bottom line: it’s no substitute for getting high and anyone who sells it as a miracle-cure is a huckster, but it’s worth a try for pain and anxiety. Topical/roll-on stuff for pain, the tinctures for anxiety. Seems to help some people alot, some people not quite as much, but rarely do people tell me it does absolutely nothing. The CBD market is largely unregulated so it’s easy to get ripped off. A legit place will have detailed information on their CBD products (with the levels of CBD and/or THC specifically listed) and/or certificates from lab-tested manufacturers.

      Not trying to sell shit, but I hear alot of older people talking about it (including Dr. Oz and Montel Williams, lol) so I figured I’d throw in my two cents.

      1. False Solace

        Sounds like a placebo to me. They’ll need to do more studies before I’ll accept that it’s more effective than a magnetic bracelet (also a placebo, to be clear). I’ll admit I don’t know anything about MJ, but when it comes to backpain I found that doing McKenzie stretches made a huge difference. I get a flareup about once a month, a pinched nerve that radiates to my chest causing agony whenever I breathe (which is generally difficult to avoid). The stretches put things back to rights. I’m very wary of pain relievers, and surgery is usually a precursor to disability since it so rarely succeeds. Anyway it makes sense to me that careful physical therapy would help. I got the book off Amazon and followed the instructions.

      2. marku52

        Our experience is the same. It does seem to work for joint/muscle pain (topical).

        Out here in OR, there is now a land rush to plant “hemp” as they call it. Lots of fields going it, some planted just last week (seems late for a planting!).

        Unfortunately, the stuff smell absolutely awful when it gets ripe. Driving around in the far beyond and “I smell skunk!”, you look for the grow.

        Probably be a big fall out when this latest bubble blows up…..

      3. Yves Smith

        I can pretty much guarantee it won’t do anything for me. Prescription opioids and synthetic opioids give me no pain relief and make me feel like crap. If the hard stuff isn’t helpful, I doubt this will be.

    3. mbc92028

      CBD from Marijuana and from Hemp are very different. Hemp CBD does not work the same, have the same effects or work as well. There are dozens if not hundreds of Cannaboids in marijuana. We do not understand them all, especially when combined.
      CBD is amazing, the tinctures will make a knot in your neck go away over a night or 2. With zero side effects other then amazement. Bayer is screwed.
      Ricky Simpson oil might be the best thing we got to fight against the cancer, I know it sounds crazy. That and the HPD vaccine must be given to the youngs..
      Trust me I’m from Oregon.

      1. False Solace

        My sister had a badly sprained foot that was painful to walk on for months on end. She wore a brace but her work requires her to be on her feet a lot and it didn’t seem to be improving. She used some CBD and swears that her foot healed within days. I don’t know the specific variety or how she ingested it though.

        1. Wukchumni

          I rubbed about $100 worth of CBD oil on my left knee that had a bone bruise, and all I got was greasy. Didn’t help.

    4. h2odragon

      I tried 2 grams of powdered CBD from one of the most reputable suppliers when there were only a dozen or so. One was, one wasnt CBD. I wouldn’t expect anything on the mass market to contain actual CBD except by accident right now.

      When asked, I’ve told people they should only buy flower, from a grower they trust,if seeking CBD; but the better option is find a real weed dealer because they’ve got customers who won’t stand for poor product.

    5. Oregoncharles

      My wife tried CBD oil for her arthritic hands at the insistence of her offspring, was extremely surprised when it worked; both the pain and swelling went down. (It only takes one example to prove possibility.) OTOH, I don’t think it helped my shoulder much, if at all. The latter was more of an injury. Since it was a salve, distance from the skin might be a factor, too. She’s accustomed to Mary Jane, I’m not, despite my generation.

      For what it’s worth. But given the one dramatic example, I doubt that it’s a scam.

    6. Oregoncharles

      Most drugs, especially neurological, are quite variable in their action. You get a lesson in that when undergoing a iong medical siege. That’s why they use statistics to study them.

      I think what we’re seeing is that the action varies tremendously, as does the drug itself. It’s pretty harmless, so trial and error is called for.

  14. flora

    It’s as if, whenever they spot a corner, the Democrats have to paint themselves into it.

    LoL. Thanks.

  15. GF

    Here is a link to the AARP/Des Moines Register candidate forum from yesterday:


    Tulsi is the first one up in the video so you don’t need to stick around if you don’t want to watch the other 2. Being sponsored by AARP means the topics revolve around older folks. There is also a short Q&A if you scroll down.

    Tomorrow Liz is the headliner and Sat. Bernie’s the man.

  16. Carolinian

    Eventually it will be much cheaper and simpler to make really complicated things, like microprocessors and everything, in space and then send those highly complex manufactured objects back down to earth, so that we don’t have the big factories and pollution generating industries

    What hooey. And it might be interesting to total up just how eco friendly Bezos’ deliver everything to your house business model is.

    1. JBird4049

      Yeah, but no with the lowest costs of space to ground delivery using Amazon’s business model; I’m dreaming of inadvertent KEWs (Kinetic energy penetrators) turning some customers and their house into a crater with the survivors being unable to sue because of those service “agreements.” Or perhaps LIBRA while trying to collect on its 3000% Payday loan saying “What a nice home you have there. I’da be shame if anything were to happen to it.”

      I am joking. Just. If in thirty years, I hear about a Tesla model Omega delivery from Tesla’s orbital factories was misdelivered onto a waiting customer, I would not be shocked. Then there would be the fabulous opportunities to further monetize our existence using the latest orbital spyware money can steal.

      1. Hepativore

        Plus, Google and Amazon would be giddy about all of the spying/data collection satellites they could launch. Since they would be in orbit, it would make it impossible for anyone to opt out.

        As it is, the brain chip that is being pushed by Jeff Bezos is probably just an excuse to spy on people by collecting health and location data to sell to third party companies including health insurers so that they can look for more excuses to raise people’s rates.

  17. Lee

    I suppose the real point of such a comparison would be a capital strike if Sanders wins.

    Abso-effing-lutely! There is little doubt in my mind that capital will go nuts if Sanders wins and disrupt the hell out of the economy. I’m guessing most people know this on some level or other and it frightens them. If he wins, gird your loins guys ‘n gals et al, we will be in for a wild ride ahead.

    1. John k

      They won’t bury their money. Bonds, maybe gold do well, equities tank, granted overdue.

    2. curlydan

      a capital strike due to one person’s election when his own (or nearest) political party is fairly hostile to him? I could see a small dip in equities in the first week after the election and possible longer-term losses in healthcare, but after the powers-that-be come out and pledge their loyalty to the current order, there’s no reason for capital to react too wildly.

      I’d love to be proven correct or incorrect about what would happen after a Sanders victory.

      1. JBird4049

        It’s not a President Sanders that’s scary to them; a President who has successfully thwarted the Deep State all hands efforts probably has immense popular support, which would be almost impossible to stop even with full on coup that has effective military support does.

        The fact that the American left was dead for decades until recently means that the economic, political, media/propaganda, and social elites that comprise the command structure of the Deep State have almost no ability to truly see how mild Sanders, Ocasio-Cortez, Gabbard, and certainly Warren are. Unless you paid attention during the Cold War or had some political science, economics, or even history classes worth the name, which is unlikely, these politicians are actually “Better Dead than Red” Stalinists instead of the mild Democratic Socialist (not communist) that Bernie Sanders is to the old time law-and-order social conservative that Elizabeth Warren is.

        So I would guess that the TPTB are wondering just how to stop the very likely increasingly strong reform movement. The economy today is far worse than it was during the 60s with an increasing percentage of Americans suffering and wanting to change if not dump the system. The current American regime is facing a harder, more cynical, and more desperate population now compared to fifty years ago. Part of what broke the reformist movements of the 60s-70s was the co-opting, imprisonments, and political assassinations of their leadership. Often just paying a monthly stipend or for to pay for an “independent” article to sway influential people. Or put a bullet in them like MLK.

        These tactics are only more likely to enrage and strengthen the movement especially as our economy continues its steadily accelerating collapse. It will harder to blame the dirty hippies and outside agitators for this. Perhaps some public “safety” laws will be passed or the courts will put the stake in and set fire to what remains of the Bill of Rights. Then the police, as part of the national Security State, can really get going under the new law-and-order or the terrorists rubric for law enforcement actions.

    3. False Solace

      So, Pres. Bernie orders or arm-twists the Plunge Protection Team into buying up equities as they sink, and the Fed ends up owning most of the formerly public-listed companies. Pres. Bernie then orders them to be sold to their employees.

      While we’re imagining possible future scenarios, I mean.

  18. martell

    Booker’s comments on reparations are confused. Reparations are compensation for injustice. When determining what would be fair where reparations are concerned, we should consider either how the agents were before the injustice took place or how they would have been had the injustice not occurred. Reparations serve in part to rectify the situation, to put things back into the order that would have obtained had there been no wrongdoing. Rectifying the situation rarely and only accidentally results in the economic equality of wrongdoer and victim. That’s because economic equality is not the relevant standard for retribution.

    It is, though, understandable that Booker would prefer a reparations approach to economic inequality. He probably thinks that the rules according to which good things and bad things are distributed among citizens in the US are basically fair. Injustices, then, have to be matter of those rules being violated. To this way of thinking there is nothing unjust about homelessness or lack of health care per se. It would only be a problem if it was somehow the consequence of some violation of the principles of a market society (i.e., the distributive principles assumed to be fair), such as one person enslaving another. Injustices, from this perspective, could not possibly be the result of playing by market rules. No, someone must have cheated.

    I guess what I’m suggesting is that the reparations approach to addressing economic inequality is exactly what one would expect from a neoliberal.

    1. Lee

      They are committing only to studying the problem. If I may mix metaphors: I envision them walking around the car, kicking the tires, and declaring “This dog won’t hunt.”

      1. Carey

        Booker’s word-salad statement, once again:

        “I’m excited that people can really focus past the bluster of people who want to demonize the idea that we should study a way to address specific past economic harms and try to create more economic equality,” Booker, who is running for president, told The Hill.

        demonize study address try

        1. Carey

          Oops, forgot “excited”. Booker really should have worked “proud” in there, though; the word for
          when the few are doing something particularly shameful.

          What a country

  19. elkern

    Extremely skeptical of “Climate Solution: Use Carbon Dioxide to Generate Electricity”, and annoyed that SciAm even used that that clickbait headline (it’s like describing Fracking as a way of generating electricity from polluted water).

    Using the word “could” seven times in a short article indicates that it’s really a Techno-Optimist puff-piece. One obvious problem – how to collect the Methane displaced by pumping CO2 into the clathrates – is noted in the penultimate paragraph: “…the freed methane, which could simply seep out of the deposit through numerous cracks and in all directions”. In that particular sentence, the word “could” should be “would”.

    The result of the only experiment mentioned was described as “Some CO2 ended up being stored, and some methane was released up the same pipe.” Not sure I’d call that “science”.

    The article lists other problems, economic as well as technical, and ignores many other. The energy required to 1) concentrate the CO2 and 2) force it 1km underwater and 3) concentrate and any resulting methane will be significant. As things stand now, many Fracking operations just flare the methane that burbles up with the more valuable sludge; it’s not profitable to bother capturing gas we’re already sucking out of the ground.

    The proposal is just a “clever” way to make Carbon Sequestration look “even better” by imagining we can get usable energy out of the process. Looks to me like another shot at pretending we can go on burning carbon & clean it all up later.

    1. ewmayer

      Extremely disappointed SciAm gave this drivel an air of credibility by publishing it. The problems are obvious and glaring:

      o Methane hydrates need specific conditions of temperature and pressure to keep them contained in their molecular cages – pumping huge quantities of pressurized CO2 into hydrate beds is unavoidably destabilizing;

      o We’ve seen how ‘good’ the fracking indusry is at containing methane leakage from readily accessible earth-surface wells. Now they want us to believe that containing the methane forced out of sub-seafloor hydrate deposits miles under the ocean is somehow going to be magically easier? Good grief.

      This is like the latest “Study: vitamin X found to cure cancer Y” foo I commented on a couple days ago: THERE IS NO MAGIC BULLET, PEOPLE. We simply have to stop emitting so godd*mn much CO2 and other crud into the atmosphere. The problem, unavoidably, is too many people, consuming too much stuff. Unfortunately, there isn’t a single major economic development paradigm among the operative ones in the world which doesn’t in some way, shape or form rely on exponential demand growth in order to not collapse in on itself. So the headlines are all about magical thinking: The world can sustain 10 billion humans, if we just ‘live smart’, that sort of absurdity. It took fewer than 1 billion humans engaging in western-style consumption for on the order of a mere century to wreck the planet. Now we’re gonna keep consuming like that in the First World and at the same time “lift that many out of poverty” in multiple developing nations without making the problem worse? Yah, right we are.

        1. ewmayer

          Perhaps the only way to check which is more nutty is likely to deploy both at scale and compare how big the resulting sets of disastrous ‘unexpected consequences’ are. Not an experiment we want to run. However, BECCS at least is based in some form on the way nature sequesters CO2, and doesn’t involve the risk of destabilizing humongous CH4-ice deposits miles under the ocean.

          But both involve magical “technology can solve this and allow us to keep our global turn-everyone-into-a-western-style-consumer economic-growth paradigm” thinking.

        2. drumlin woodchuckles

          I agree with ewmayer. I think “CO2 in . . . methane out” is more insane even than BECCS.
          It speaks of disturbing huge methane deposits which are currently contained away from the atmosphere. Releasing them into the ocean and thence into the air above would be inevitable from disturbing such deposits.

          Let’s don’t poke the Methane Bear with sharp sticks.

  20. Summer

    RE: Bozo in Space

    Remember the first mail order king that invented Sears? Barely, right?

    We need to get back to that…

  21. laughingsong

    “U.S. military consumes more hydrocarbons than most countries — massive hidden impact on climate”

    Thanks Lambert! Turning off our military machine would do ever so much more than electric cars and home solar — and not just with regard to greenhouse gas and climate change!

  22. Plenue

    Over the last few days we’ve had an academic paper released, which admittitedly I haven’t read because it isn’t yet in a public database, but whose title seems to indicate it’s all about ‘explaining’ the Case-Deaton findings of significant numbers of white suicides as evidence white people are just upset about losing privileges. We’ve also had Twitter liberals equating these suicides with Nazis killing themselves in 1945.

    There are people with a significant stake in Trump having won just because of ‘racists voting racist’.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      Mentioned in Water Cooler on July 16:

      I don’t know what “almost published” means, but this seems to be the journal and no article with that title is on the list of articles in press. It’s Elsevier, i.e. respectable.

  23. dcblogger

    “I suppose the real point of such a comparison would be a capital strike if Sanders wins.”
    I hope that Sanders has a plan to prevent this.

    1. Summer

      Capital strike? Would be the perfect cover for how much the economy got blown back around 2008.
      They floated the stock market with unicorns – and assorted asset bubbles that aren’t even grounded in reality – good cover but weating thin.

      Nothing was fixed.

    2. Geo

      My hope is that his plan would be to call out those striking as selfish traitors who value their billions over the good of the country. To let their financial institutions crumble and rid our society of that parasite.

      The public sentiment after the ‘08 crash was let the bastards fall but they got bailed out instead. I think most would still love to see the titans of capital get their due. Let them “Go Galt” and that just opens up opportunities for new ways of doing things.

      That’s my utopian perspective. :)

      1. notabanker

        I think most people forget Congress voted down TARP after overwhelming response from the voting public. It was resurrected for a second vote after Mr Market had a meltdown.

  24. CarlH

    I got to reading about the Freedom Riders murders and then linked to the man who was eventually convicted of planning and helping commit those murders and was reminded of an important truth about redemption at the very end of the article. This is a man who lived a lifetime of virulent, even murderous racism. From the wiki of Edgar Ray Killen:

    James Hart Stern, a black preacher from California, shared a prison cell with Edgar Ray Killen from August 2010 to November 2011. During that time, Killen and Stern forged a close relationship and Killen hand wrote dozens of letters to Stern outlining his views on race as well as confessing to other crimes. In addition to the letters, the former leader of the KKK signed over power of attorney and his land in Mississippi to his cellmate.[22] Stern detailed his experience in the 2017 book Killen the KKK, co-authored by North Carolina author Autumn K. Robinson. Using his power of attorney, Rev. Stern disbanded Killen’s incarnation of the KKK on January 5, 2016.

  25. jax

    “Democrats warm to idea of studying reparations”

    Why don’t they just hand Trump re-election? Dividing the deserving. I guess that’s what Dems do best.

    1. anonymous

      A question for the next debate: “Do you think Trump should be impeached in his second term?”

  26. nippersmom

    Sanders is sending out campaign emails and posting on his Facebook his support of Ilhan Omar and asking for donations to be slpit between his campaign and hers.
    Last night, I was at dinner with Ilhan Omar, her daughter, and some other members of Congress when we heard the news that thousands of people at a Donald Trump rally were chanting “send her back.”

    To my surprise, Ilhan was pretty unfazed. Sadly, as she told me, she has been dealing with this kind of hatred and racism for a long time.

    And she knows, as we do, that Trump is a demagogue doing what he does best: dividing and conquering through hate.

    No. Trump won’t talk about trying to throw 32 million Americans off their health care. He won’t talk about his massive tax breaks for billionaires. He won’t talk about his budget which called for huge cuts to Medicaid and Medicare. And he certainly won’t talk about how climate change is destroying the planet.

    But he will try to divide the country up based on the color of our skin, our religion, where we were born or our sexual orientation.

    Brothers and sisters: Now is the time, more than at any other moment in our lifetimes, to say NO to racism, NO to divisiveness, NO to the hatred that Trump is trying to foment.

    Ilhan Omar is a leader with strength and courage. She won’t back down to Trump’s racism and hate, and neither will we. So today, I want to ask you to do something important that will help ensure her voice is with us in Congress for a long time to come:

    (request for donation here)

    Ilhan and I have worked together on a number of important issues since she was elected – most recently our effort to cancel all student debt in this country.

    She is a critical voice in our fight for justice in America, and I am excited to work with her and other progressives when we are in the White House.

    1. Geo

      Bernie is an anti-Semite!!! /s

      As always, Sanders walks the walk. No virtue signaling, just doing good for others one step at a time.

      Old saying: “In a democracy people get the leaders they deserve.”

      My fear is we don’t deserve someone like Sanders.

    2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      “No to deviciveness.”

      Looking at Pelosi and her allies, and AOC et al, people comment that the D party is divided.

      For the good guys, and gals, it’s doing what needs to be done. Some might say it is time for a showdown, the final battle to take over the party.

      For the bad guys, and gals, they will likely think they are the good guys and good gals. And they do what they think needs to be done.

      Whether it’s devicive or not, if it needs to be done, someone will do it.

    3. The Rev Kev

      Getting back into familiar territory here. Back during the Vietnam war, protesters against that war were told to either “Love America or leave it”. And here we are over fifty years later with the same slogan coming back again. Don’t know if they ever use the “USA” chant back then though.

  27. fdr-fan

    So Bernie is “the one who lights the fires”? I thought that was PGE.

    Seriously, it’s not a name that will be popular among Gaians, nor among people who live in wildfire country.

    1. Geo

      PG&E should be made to adopt Bernie’s old slogan in all their marketing from now on:

      PG&E “Feel the Burn”

  28. Eureka Springs

    The House passed Intel Authorization bill yesterday. I found this while skimming around. We are so screwed.

    SEC. 707. Establishment of deepfakes prize competition.

    (a) Prize competition.—Pursuant to section 24 of the Stevenson-Wydler Technology Innovation Act of 1980 (15 U.S.C. 3719), the Director of National Intelligence, acting through the Director of the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Agency, shall carry out a program to award prizes competitively to stimulate the research, development, or commercialization of technologies to automatically detect machine-manipulated media.

    (b) Prize amount.—In carrying out the program under subsection (a), the Director may award not more than a total of $5,000,000 to one or more winners of the prize competition.

    (c) Consultation.—In carrying out the program under subsection (a), the Director may consult with the heads of relevant departments and agencies of the Federal Government.

    (d) Machine-manipulated media defined.—In this section, the term “machine-manipulated media” means video, image, or audio recordings generated or substantially modified using machine-learning techniques in order to falsely depict events or to falsely depict the speech or conduct of an individual.

  29. Chris

    Pretty sure the big crash isn’t going to come until after Trump gets re-elected. If it happens before the election, the donors won’t be able to control the result. If it happens once Trump is re-elected, then the Democrats get to claim Trump ruined Obama’s economy, the Republicans get their chance to re-write everything because they won’t waste the crisis, the Blue Dogs get to shrug and pretend they had no choice but to give the corprotacracy everything they wanted, and serious people get to pretend that left leaning policies are unpopular because everyone goes back to begging for a job. Everyone wins! :(

    1. Chris

      Whoa. My reply was intended for dearieme at 3:02 PM. Guess my browser updated the cache!

  30. Craig H.

    > people obsessed with achieving perfect slumber, a condition they called orthosomnia.

    In my book this condition is described as common sense.

  31. Cal2

    “California governor Gavin Newsom signed Assembly Bill 1054, establishing a $21.5 billion wildfire relief fund [paid by customers] and setting a June 30, 2020 deadline for fallen utility PG&E Corp. (PCG on the NYSE) to emerge from bankruptcy in order to participate. PG&E, which was found liable for a series of 2017 and 2018 blazes including the Camp Fire (which killed 85 people and destroyed the town of Paradise), entered Chapter 11 on Jan. 29.”

    “In its most recent 10-Q filing on March 31, the company disclosed $14.2 billion in existing wildfire-related liabilities. In testimony concurrent with the filing, CFO Jason Wells estimated that figure could end up topping $30 billion.“” Last Wednesday, The Wall Street Journal reported that company executives were aware of problems with transmission lines that were eventually responsible for the Camp Fire, yet “repeatedly failed to perform the necessary upgrades.”

    “…It’s a 2% return on incremental capital. That is below their cost of capital. They are liquidating.
    The utility is in effect liquidating before your eyes before any wildfire liability.


    Earthquake after earthquake this week. PG&E’s two nuclear reactors sit near various faults. Newsom refuses to force inspection of them.
    PG&E has DEFERRED ITS MAINTENANCE at Diablo since at least 2010.

    Nuclear Regulatory Commission site inspector Michael Peck, among many others, has “doubts that Diablo can withstand a credible earthquake”.

    PG&E Corporate profits and shareholder equity seems to be more important to Newsom than active threats to a dozen or so million lives, depending which way the wind is blowing.

  32. Tom Stone

    If the Dems nominate Biden it’s 4 more years of Trump.
    All it would take is a series of ads showing clips of Biden with women over the years.
    Series, because I don’t think it would be hard to find enough footage for a pretty long series of disturbing interactions.
    Start with the right voice saying “Creepy Joe Biden” and have the right background music.

    He would be “Creepy Joe” after the first ad and it would stick.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        That depends on your perception of the GOP. Personally, I would go long on guillotine stock (obviously they would renamed a more appropriate American name) if Trump were to win a second term as Team Blue donors are “invited” to a special ceremony on the National Mall. This is the end game for the GOP. The only thing stopping them is that they should be a Southern rump party.

        This is what Team Blue donor class doesn’t understand. The GOP is dedicated to the rich within the tribe.

    1. Andy Raushner

      Biden’s numbers blow HRC away in rural areas and blacks in terms of likability. I always thought he would make a good GE candidate over a primary one. Sanders may benefit from striking a deal with Biden on VP choice for a 2024 run.

      1. Lambert Strether Post author

        I’m not sure whether you think Biden would make a good VP for Sanders, or vice versa. In any case, a Biden ticket with Sanders would certainly destroy Sanders, since it would be against everything Sanders has ever stood for, not just on policy, but on political economy. So, for Sanders, pas si bête. Don’t give up your day job, my advice.

  33. Jeff W

    “Perky ‘Canada’ Has Own Government, Laws” [The Onion].

    Reminds me of one of my all-time favorite New Yorker pieces, Bruce McCall’s 1985 “In the New Canada, Living is a Way of Life,” which emulates that “anthropological style” (or whatever it’s called) employed by journalists like Rick Smith in his 1975 book The Russians to hilarious, absurd effect.

    Here’s one of the 16 vignettes:

    Now visible as our plane descends toward the airport are the familiar antlike legions of motor-powered cars that are the sole means of private transport for most Canadians. They swarm across the landscape in columns so regimented that none dares stray from its place on the paved strip laid down by the authorities to head off across the open country all around.

    These are the new Canadians, on their way to work in this, the new Canada.

  34. Synoia

    Jeff Bezos: I spend my billions on space because we’re destroying Earth” [CNBC]. Bezos: “We humans have to go to space if we are going to continue to have a thriving civilization. We have become big as a population, as a species, and this planet is relatively small.

    Ok Jeff, this is what it is.

    All told, the rocket that achieved one small step for a man and one giant leap for mankind held just under 950,000 gallons of fuel.

    That’s about 320,000 gallons of fuel to get 320 lb of protoplasm to the moon, or 1,000 gallons per lb.

    We use 400million gallons of gasoline each day, so one day’s gas would get about 4,000 people to the moon.

    We, living humans are not going to leave this planet on mass without some miracle new technology, and some technology to match our earthbound inertia to a new inertia on the moon without ripping a Human apart, or squashing the human flat. We have different vectors.

    To get 1 million people up there would about double our Planetary Carbon Dioxide.

    If the human race is getting off this planet, it will be a few teachers and caretakers, and many embryos. When said embryos mature they will owe us earthbound nothing, and we will be providing them nothing. If we want to make demands, they will have gravity on their side.

    Here’s the bottom line, Jeff. If you go, your are on your own, without the power of your money, and the infrastructure with which you built your business, on planet Earth.

    Don’t let the door hit you on the way up, Jeff.

    1. skippy

      Does it read like the bit in One Flew over the Cuckoos Nest psychologist session WRT some young thing and the mammalian response forwarded to the Psychologist ….

  35. Burns

    A day late, but I read the text of the House resolution posted above. All fine and good and I agree with the sentiment behind it, but the line on page 2, para 3: “…except for the descendants of Native people and enslaved African Americans, are immigrants or descendants of immigrants…”

    One can argue whether Native peoples are truly immigrants or not (prehistoric migration from Siberia and all that) but I’m curious why they included AAs as well. Seems to me like the first slaves brought ashore at Jamestown in 1619 were immigrants, too, albeit very much involuntarily.

    It’s a real head-scratcher to me why they used this formulation; is there some reason to liken AAs to Native Americans and thus not view them as immigrants? I assume it’s some sort of IdPol nod for special dispensation.

    In my idealistic moments I hope we can form a more perfect union where this sort of thing is unnecessary, but, if this is IdPol, cynical me sometimes thinks this is all just a play for power at a tribal level. Various groups vying to control resources and authority in an ever shifting kaleidoscope of politics. Human nature never changes.

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