Links 7/23/19

How fat prawns can save lives PhysOrg

Forensic Architecture Says It Has Found Bullet Linking Whitney Vice Chair to Violence in Gaza, Withdraws from Biennial HyperAllergic. Resilc: “First Sackler and opiates, now ammo and art blowback.”

Milky Way cannibalised entire galaxy 10 billion years ago, scientists say Independent (Kevin W)

China must avoid a role in destruction of Amazon Asia Times. A little late for that.

The Overprotected American Child Wall Street Journal

Color-changing tattoo shows blood glucose level Boing Boing (resilc). Why does this remind me of the tattoo in The Stars My Destination that The Scientific People applied to Gully Foyle’s face when they rescued him? Foyle couldn’t fully remove the tattoo, and when his face got flushed with anger, the tattoo would be visible. In the book, it was a device that made it hard for him to hide his past.


Aussie swimmer Mack Horton’s protest against Chinese rival and accused drug cheat Sun Yang could get super awkward for Gina Rinehart Business Insider. Kevin W: “I saw this guy’s antics during the whole presentation ceremony. Acted like a self-righteous dickhead.”

Huawei Secretly Helped Build North Korea’s Wireless Network, Leaked Documents Suggest CNET. Why is this a surprise?

Pre-Revolutionary Chinese Debt: An Investment for the Truly Stable Genius Credit Slips. A bit of TDS in the headline, since the fraudster who peddled the bonds “leads one of the largest congregations in the country, with roughly 14,000 members, and was a spiritual adviser to George W. Bush and Barack Obama.” But he’s trying to get Trump to take up the case.

India denies it requested Trump’s help in Kashmir Financial Times


Live: Boris Johnson to be UK’s next prime minister BBC. Assume the brace position.

Boris Johnson warned by Tory rebels: ditch no deal or face fight for survival Guardian

Sir Alan Duncan quits as Foreign Office minister but his plot to allow MPs to reject Johnson as new PM unravels Telegraph. The idea that the Queen would meddle was silly.

New Cold War

South Korea fires warning shots at Russian military aircraft BBC

Ukraine Election – Voters Defeat Second Color Revolution Moon of Alabama (Kevin W)


Iran’s spy claims raise tensions another notch with Trump The Hill

Guurst: “How to shoot yourself in the foot”:

UK to launch European security mission over Iran row DW. Any takers?

Morgan Stanley: Why Tanker Wars Aren’t Causing An Oil Price Spike OilPrice

Venezuela blackout: Power cuts plunge country into darkness BBC

Trump Transition

U.S. to expand rapid deportation nationwide with sweeping new rule Reuters. Resilc: “So when do their labor “vacancies” start to bite?”

Trump backs two-year budget deal The Hill

DOJ tells Mueller to limit testimony to his report Politico

Army Mission: Army Lets Slip That It’s Conducting Secret Operation Around D.C. Bloomberg. Resilc: “Trump needs funding to jail Congress.”

US mistrust on the rise, with government seen as worst: poll Agence France-Presse (resilc)

Why ‘National Conservative’ Josh Hawley Wants to Enrich Foreign Banks New York Magazine

Al Franken’s Defenestration Is a Portrait of the Democratic Party Charles Pierce, Esquire and The Case of Al Franken New Yorker (resilc)

Toronto’s astonishing growth: Will it matter to Buffalo? Buffalo News (resilc)


Trump 2020 campaign shop selling plastic straws because ‘liberal paper straws don’t work’ indy100 (resilc)

The Coming Economic Crash — And How to Stop It Elizabeth Warren

Elizabeth Warren Wants Green Bombs, not a Green New Deal Black Agenda Report. Resilc flags this section:

Elizabeth Warren believes that strengthening the “effectiveness” of the U.S. military is consistent with the Green New Deal. Her bill doesn’t demand that the U.S. military be reduced in size or scale.Nor does it mention that the U.S. military is the world’s largest polluter and user of oil and fossil fuels. Instead of turning the Green New Deal into concrete policy, Warren has placed her attention on renovating the one thousand U.S. military bases that exist domestically and abroad. The so-called “policy wonk” of the 2020 elections appears to be more concerned with creating “green” bombs than a “green economy.”

There’s No Such Thing as a “Progressive Prosecutor” in a System Designed to Criminalize Blackness Black Agenda Report

White police officers are not more likely to shoot minorities PhysOrg (Robert M). This study is crap. It’s based on police reports, which video evidence routinely shows to be false, particularly regarding “suspect attacked police, suspect was carrying a weapon” claims to justify violence by police.

Puerto Rico

Corruption, Mismanagement, and Disrespect Fuel Puerto Rico Protests Real News

Why Half a Million Puerto Ricans Are Protesting in the Streets Nation. You heard it here first from resilc:

Trump wins 2020
GOP cuts budgets on everything but dod
2022 Demos win Congress
2023 austerity riots in USA USA
Late 2023 impeached and gone
2024 Ivanka runs to avenge father’s “overthrow”

Seven Days Vermont (resilc)

737 Max

Fitch cuts Boeing’s debt outlook to ‘negative’ on 737 MAX problems Reuters

U.S. Shale Is Doomed No Matter What They Do OilPrice

A Clue to the Reason for Women’s Pervasive Car-Safety Problem CityLab

Who’s ready for decades of low or negative U.S. interest rates? MarketWatch. Great, no safe investments worth having, more insane valuations….

An Unprecedented Drop in Overdose Deaths Is Sadly Not Reason to Celebrate Vice

Class Warfare

‘Our paychecks bounced’: US workers in limbo as coalmines suddenly close Guardian (resilc)

Elite Anxiety: Paul Collier’s “Future of Capitalism” Notes on Liberty

The Risky Business of Bringing You Lunch

Delivery apps like DoorDash are using your tips to pay workers’ wages The Verge (Chuck L)

Antidote du jour (furzy):

And a bonus:

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. dearieme

    Toronto’s astonishing growth: Will it matter to Buffalo?

    I met a bloke from Buffalo once. He said it had the filthiest climate in the US. Is Trono’s any better?

    1. Louis Fyne

      Buffalo is on the wrong side (ymmv) of the prevailing winds/lake effect snow.

      Cold is one thing, cold + constant snow? That takes a hearty soul and/or it’s survivorship bias

    2. Eclair

      I had a long conversation this weekend with a young man who is a Toronto native, living there currently. We started by discussing immigrants and the enormous immigrant population in Toronto. I mentioned that most Americans do not think of Canada as multi-cultural, or as a nation of immigrants. He talked of the various immigrant cultural groups he had met, all over Canada; Germans, Ukrainians, Scandinavians, and how they still existed and, in some areas, were becoming more active.

      He talked of how he had hitchhiked all over Europe, but would not do that now. He said he now felt ‘unsafe,’ even at home in Toronto. And mentioned the ‘highly paid’ immigrants, doctors and software techs, from countries that were not northern European. From there, the conversation went downhill … for me, anyway, as I slowly realized that I was having my first encounter with a Canadian White Supremacist.

      I was really tempted to mention the plight of Canada’s First Nations, but remembered Rule No. 1, as promulgated by Amfortas …. you listen.

      He quickly went on to bash government regulations that were hampering his family apartment rental business, and brushed off homelessness, which he said did not really exist in Canada, except for those people who ‘chose it as a lifestyle.’ This is a young white male, college graduate, speaks three languages, has a grad degree in accounting, and cannot land a permanent job. Except for working in his family’s business.

      1. eg

        What a perfectly horrible little piece of work that fellow must be — equal parts rentier and oik.

        My Canada isn’t big enough for the both of us …

    3. Charles Leseau

      I’m originally from Buffalo. I’m not sure what constitutes “filthiest climate,” but it’s a typical blue collar Great Lakes city, so I don’t see it as any worse than Cleveland, Chicago, Detroit, etc.

      Buffalo has two horrible things going on weather-wise: In the winter, as Louis points out, it is lake effect snows. Moreover, “winter” can stretch from November to April, and the place feels like it has the shortest spring of any place I’ve lived. Then, summer comes, where it gets so humid that it might as well be Thailand.

      As for Toronto’s boom stretching into Buffalo, I’m no expert on how this stuff works, but Toronto is two hours away, much more modern, and I don’t see any greater boom for Buffalo than – say – Cleveland would provide. But what do I know?

      Buffalo has tried to gentrify along two strips of road over the last 3 decades (Hertel in N. Buffalo & Elmwood in W. Buffalo). Maybe if Buffalo does something about their devastated waterfront, which still has the rusty and decaying carcasses of its once thriving industry dominating the whole picture, then it might be attractive to investors or what have you. Look across the Niagara River at Canada and it is a beautiful waterfront, with houses and grass and little boat harbors. It’s such a gross contrast.

      1. Inode_buddha

        If you think Buffalo is bad, you should see Niagara Falls. Its post-apocalyptic nowdays with a permanent population hovering around 20k.

        Buffalo is much better, becoming quite gentrified, the medical corridor, and most of the old mills are gone altogether. As an industrial worker its kind of sad for me. Everybody said “Get into coding” then they sent all the coding jobs to India… it was a dirty double-cross taking multiple decades

        1. Charles Leseau

          Yeah, that figures. Is the Canadian side of Niagara Falls still doing okay? They always had the better tourist trap stuff.

          I haven’t been a proper Buffalonian since 2012, but I lived in Eden for a few years until chucking it, moving cross country, and finding a cheap town on the Pac/NW coast.

          And I really should have pointed out with my last two sentences of the previous (for any non-Buffalonian) that there is no giant sister city on the Canadian side, so it makes sense that their waterfront looks nicer on that point alone, but the I-190 and the whole stretch of waterfront near the Peace Bridge on the US side last time I was there still looked disheveled and downtrodden, with multiple unused buildings with broken windows, rusted iron works right at the waterfront itself, etc, and the thin strip of civic waterfront always felt depressing to me.

          There is a little bike path that connects to Delaware Park and goes all the way out past N. Tonawanda where I used to bicycle the most when I lived around Elmwood c. 2012, and it’s the weirdest “pleasure ride” because the whole way you’ve got a loud interstate highway right next to you and a bunch of concrete and metal dominating the works. The cemetery in Buffalo is a far better place to picnic, bike, and relax than the park, too, IMO.

          1. Inode_buddha

            Ironworks is no more, buildings are slowly being re-purposed (loft apts and micro breweries, etc.)(except for Republic on Rte5) Canadian side is still better but Buffalo is a far cry from what it was in my youth. Its slowly turning into a university med school town

            1. Charles Leseau

              Right on. Sounds like they’re addressing exactly what I was saying they should, ‘cept for the UB med school bit. Innnn-ter-estink!

          2. bob

            I visited the buffalo waterfront this year. Big grain elevators. If you want a history on monopoly and mergers, this is the place for it.

            Are all those elevators empty because ADM et al didn’t want any competition anymore?

            In this case this whole point of buying the storage would be to not let anyone, ever, use it. Maybe if you changed the use to residential you could allow it to be sold?

            I think, in general, people who live near the great lakes discount the value of what moves on them. Most hardly think about it other than as waterfront property.

        2. JerryDenim

          Everybody said “Get into coding” then they sent all the coding jobs to India… it was a dirty double-cross taking multiple decades

          Even as stories abound in the press about Boeing outsourcing its software design to Indians making $9.00 an hour, good-thinking liberals continue to sell high school kids on the virtues of “STEM” careers. Organizations like “Black Girls Code” are preaching the gospel of coding as some kind of upwardly mobile, socioeconomic panacea for traditionally marginalized groups. If these young aspiring coders can avoid the bear trap of student debt and shady for-profit vocational degree programs I suppose there’s no harm in learning to code and maybe some of them will manage to make a living writing code, but it seems like these groups are setting up a lot of high school kids to be disappointed with their career prospects and earning potential in the near future. Maybe it’s better than telling then to give up on ever having a meaningful, remunerative career because everything is going to be automated or outsourced in the future so you might as well drop out and start your Oxy habit now. Gotta keep hope alive I suppose.

          1. Jonathan Holland Becnel

            I want to start a Classics school thats free right in the ‘poorest’ section of Nola. Teach kids how to think and criticise and stand on their own. F STEM and all the Exxon n Walmart sponsored Vocational Charter Schools!

          2. Phil in KC

            I say beware of a profession where the input and output can be digitized and transmitted via a wire or airwaves because the work will likely be exported overseas.

    4. CanCyn

      It is definitely hot and humid in Toronto in summer and cold in winter but no where near the amount of snow that falls on Buffalo.

      This line from the article: “Meanwhile, Ontario is expanding at such a fast clip that one Bloomberg pundit joked, in 2017, that Buffalo should secede and attempt to join it” caught my eye. It was Richard Florida who coined the name Tor-Buff-Chester for big city that he saw running along the coast of Lake Ontario from east of Toronto all the way to Buffalo

      As someone who lives in Burlington, a city west of Toronto, it really does feel like one big city. Just try driving from Buffalo to Toronto on any week day. If you hit rush hour nightmare is the best way to describe that drive.

      Toronto is indeed growing but many people are also leaving – the high cost of housing making it impossible for so many to purchase a house. They are spreading further and further from Toronto in attempts to find affordable housing and driving up housing costs everywhere they land.
      There are 1000s of commuters in my city who drive or take transit (from train stations where parking is impossible to find after 7:30 am) – whether car or train, they are spending over 2 hours of their lives every day commuting. I work in the opposite direction, closer to Niagara and there are many people who have chosen to purchase houses that far away and commute into Toronto – I’d guess that some of them are spending over 3 hours per day on their commute. Add construction or an accident on the route in or out and make it over 4 hours.

      1. eg

        I also live in Burlington and loathe the occasions were I am forced to drive into Toronto. Fortunately these instances are rare — usually I can take the GO Train which is far more pleasant than that awful drive.

  2. russell1200

    LOL – Why didn’t you quote the part from the Black Agenda Report that called Bernie an imperialist pig? hmmm..

    1. Milton

      No mention of Bernie Sanders is in the BAR article, linked above. Perhaps provide a link to the particular article to which you are referring.

      1. Bugs Bunny

        It’s in the article and linked to the original editorial piece.

        Since Sanders entered the mainstream, Black Agenda Report has warned its readers that the self-styled “democratic socialist” is an imperialist pig, which is evidenced by his history of supporting the U.S. drone program, the invasion of Afghanistan, and the U.S.-backed overthrow of Syrian president Bashar Al-Assad, to name just a few instances.

        1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

          Can we cue up the substantive reasons why this is not an accurate assessment? Same is true across the board with the Dem candidates, except Tulsi of course

    2. Mark Gisleson

      Weird thing about Bernie. Most of his supporters are well to his left, most of us think he’s weak on foreign policy.

      But, as with Black Agenda Report, if you listen long enough you will realize that we all agree he’s the best candidate we’ve got. Unlike the neolibs, the Left is strong enough to see our candidates as they actually are, not as we wish they were.

      1. drb48

        “he’s the best candidate we’ve got”

        Exactly. If there was a better one I’d be for them. There isn’t.

    3. CoryP

      At least BAR upfront about their position on him and some articles do seem to concede that he’s a force for good even if working within the Dem party is deemed to be hopeless.

      WSWS is also very anti-Bernie/anti-everyone but they also put their cards on the table.

      What bugs me is a different site that loves to call him Bernard and seems to usually focus on the negative, but that is never explicit about where they’re coming from. Almost seems to me that they’re trying to rile up their own readership for the fun of it.

      1. dearieme

        At least BAR upfront about their position on him

        I am disappointed to learn that Biblical Archaeology Review is taking sides in current politics.

      2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Being skepitical (which is not the same as being anti-something) of everyone is a helpful start.

        its possible some will have earned some temporary trust. But the Skeptical Way is eternal.

    4. Jonathan Holland Becnel

      He may be an Imperialist Pig, but goddamnit, HES OUR IMPERIALIST PIG!

      Sanders/Gabbard 2020

  3. marym

    Bloomberg 7/23/2019 Trump Administration Moves to End Food Stamps for 3 Million People

    The Trump administration is moving to end food stamp benefits for 3 million people with proposed new regulations curtailing the leeway of states to automatically enroll residents who receive welfare benefits.

    Cutting back automatic enrollment would have a substantial effect, mostly hitting recipients who receive lower monthly benefits and disproportionately effecting working families with children trying to climb out of poverty, Elaine Waxman, a senior fellow at the Urban Institute said in testimony last month to a House Agriculture subcommittee.

    1. Jeremy Grimm

      I thought the food stamp program were one side of the governments efforts to support the prices for farm produce. Was I wrong or does it no longer have that function?

      1. marym

        SNAP and farm subsidy appropriations are in the Farm Bill. More a political choice to get a consensus in Congress rather than any direct relationship between needing and providing food.

        1. Jeremy Grimm

          I know feeding those who couldn’t afford to buy the food products of Agribusiness [now most often called ‘family farmers’ to tie in with old biases from the 1930s]. However I thought the reasoning at the time food stamps went in included some consideration of providing food to those who couldn’t buy it … instead of dumping the food or plowing it under. I suppose some provision were made to consider this a move to remedy those cases where paying farmers to hold their fields fallow had been underfunded — resulting in surpluses that couldn’t go to market without sending prices below the floor of paying for costs. Of course as the consolidation of US farms reached a certain point I suppose it may be more in line with Agribusiness goals to let prices drop below the cost floor to enable further consolidations at favorable prices … food stamps must go.

    2. jrs

      note also: “House Republicans tried to impose similar restrictions on the food stamp program last year when Congress renewed it but were rebuffed in the Senate.”

      But notice Trump does it anyway with regulations. Where is the Dem house? Oh it doesn’t matter, they would likely not vote for this, but it’s not going to congress, like all our legislation these days: One Man Decides.

      I’m so tired of this sucky dictatorship, if we were going to go with a dictatorship, couldn’t we get a good one? One where maybe at least the trains ran on time? Maybe bullet trains that ran on time? Why oh why this Dictatorship of the Suck?

      And they say Bernie couldn’t do a lot without Congress if he wanted to.

    3. False Solace

      Oh, no! Millionaires might be getting food stamps! Whatever shall we do? What a threat to the common purse. Can the treasury bear such an expense? /s

  4. Gregorio

    Pre-Revolutionary Chinese Debt: An Investment for the Truly Stable Genius
    I wonder if they’d be interested in the manila envelop full of Weimar bonds that I inherited from my grand father?

    1. The Rev Kev

      Hey! Don’t be like that. I’ve got two million dollars in Confederate bonds that I am hoping to collect on.

      1. Colonel Smithers

        Thank you, Gents.

        I have Tsarist era bonds from 1905 and 1913 and UK (defunct) bank cheques from the 19th century adorning my study wall. I collect such items.

        1. The Rev Kev

          Thank you Colonel. I cannot personally vouch for it but I have read that the room that the US Federal Reserve holds its meetings in in New York City has the walls adorned with bank notes from currencies that are no longer in existence. On a personal note, I myself possess several bank notes from hyperinflation-era Germany in the early 1920s just as a reminder of how much scrip money can be worth.

          1. dearieme

            When I was a lad I had some of the banknotes that Nazi Germany had printed for when it would rule India. Someone went to the trouble of somehow freeing them from my possession. Surely they can’t be worth anything can they?

            1. Wukchumni

              Nazis issued almost all coins (made out of junk metal) in occupied countries as money, whereas the Japanese issued almost all paper money in conquered lands, as cash of the realm.

              Most of it is worth precisely diddly squat in term of collectible value.

              Here’s a tale that ought to be made into a movie…

              In the late summer of 1942, when the Japanese had been in control of the Philippines for several months, their occupation currency suddenly began to collapse. Japanese soldiers found that a month’s pay wouldn’t buy so much as a glass of beer. The cause was a mysterious flood of silver Philippine pesos that began turning up in the markets of Manila. Somehow the silver was reaching even the prisoner-of-war camps American prisoners were bribing demoralized Japanese guards for food clothing, medicine. Next, they would start buying freedom! If the source of the silver wasn’t found soon, it could corrupt the whole structure of Japanese control.

              Where did the silver come from? The Japanese knew the MacArthur forces had dumped millions of peso into the deep crater south of Corregidor before surrendering. There was $8,500,000 of it down there, lying at a depth of 120 feet. A diving crew of seven American prisoners of war had been put to work salvaging that fortune — it would be a gift from the army to the emperor. Japanese security police were watching the American divers, guarding every peso recovered. It seemed inconceivable that any of this silver could be smuggled into Manila. Nevertheless, the Japanese decided to tighten the guard over the Americans. (The guards may or may not have known that the U. S. Navy divers whom they were forcing to recover the silver were the same ones who had dumped it there in the first place.) It had all started in the early months of 1942, when defeat in the Philippines had become inevitable.


              1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

                They will likely fictionalize it, with a fictional title: “Fiat currency goverments and fiat currenies come and go, but gold and silver (coins) endure.”

                It will probably be marketed as a horror movie.

              2. jonboinAR

                I had some ruppies (sp) that my grandmother brought back from India. I think I traded them for a Hot Wheels, so they weren’t worthless.

              3. Rhondda

                A huge cache of coins in the Philippines – isn’t that one of the subplots of Cryptonomicon?

          2. bruce

            My Dad used to tell the story of two Weimar-era brothers. One brother was conservative, cautious, risk averse and always planning for the future. The other brother was something of a party animal. Their father died, and left a huge, most excellent wine collection to be split between the brothers.

            The conservative brother thought it would be more prudent to sell his half and put the money in the bank. The party animal thought that he was intended by fate to drink his half with his friends, and after the hyperinflation hit, he was able to sell the empty bottles for more deutschmarks than the first brother got for his half!

  5. PlutoniumKun

    Re: Brexit

    Live: Boris Johnson to be UK’s next prime minister BBC. Assume the brace position.

    I suppose the best that can be said is that at least the next few weeks/months will be entertaining. The clown is in charge of the clown car.

      1. pdehaan

        The world is full of Trumps these days.
        I live in Brazil, and here we have the very worst version of Trump in the form of Bolsonaro.
        I read about about the phases of fascism yesterday, and not really sure where to place Brazil, but it’s getting worse very fast and it’s hard to keep up.

        1. jrs

          What’s going on there? I know about Bolsonaro of course, but not the latest news there.

      2. Tom Bradford

        I understand Trump is claiming that the UK chose Boris because of his resemblance to Trump! Apart from the fact that Johnson was chosen by just 0.02% of the population, I wonder exactly what resemblance Trump sees.

        It’s true, of course. Someone I heard on the radio today – a UK commentator, I believe – described Johnson as Trump with a thesaurus and I believe most everyone with two brain cells to rub together – which clearly excludes a majority of Tory party members – see Johnson as a charismatic, narcissistic incompetent. But I can’t believe Trump sees this as the resemblance despite its applicability.

  6. dcblogger

    “U.S. to expand rapid deportation nationwide with sweeping new rule Reuters. Resilc: “So when do their labor “vacancies” start to bite?”

    you miss the point. ICE and CPB personnel will be able to ask anyone to prove they are a citizen anywhere anytime. And in the unlikely event you are the sort of person who carries their passport everywhere, they will just say it is fake and grab you anyway. This is the basis for an Argentinian style dirty war.

    prediction: homeless people will be the first to be grabbed.

    1. Monty

      If you cannot prove which country I am from, to where would I be deported? What obligation has any nation to accept a deportee without paperwork that proves their origin? I can see people ending up in a kind of Limbo which would be very hard to escape.

    2. Fiery Hunt

      Paranoid, much?

      I’m as much against any sort of “papers please” policy as any one but this sort of dramatization is not helpful.

  7. kimyo

    i can’t let a mention of ‘the stars my destination’ go by without thunderous applause. truly one of the top ten sci fi books.

    starting your day by suiting up to retrieve an oxygen cylinder which may or may not be empty is quite an apt metaphor for our future.

  8. DJG

    Antidote du jour: Is it time for the national conversation about dogs? Can we let dogs be dogs, rather than fantasy lovers, emotional supports, and toys?

    And I won’t even go into the popularity of overbred and sickly breeds that are mainly just a veterinary case to take care of during their long decline.

    I grew up around dogs, plenty of dogs. The idea of dressing up a dog in a onesie would have been instantly vetoed by my parents. The dogs had their own realm, which wasn’t exactly aligned with the human realm.

    1. marieann

      I agree…..I’ve never liked animal dressed up to be cute.

      Though I do like dogs in sweaters when it is cold….then again perhaps my bias is showing as I love to knit dog sweaters, even though I’ve never had a dog.

    2. Merf56

      Yikes- maybe rockin’ some displaced anger there buddy….
      my objection to the photo has zip to do with clothing on canines but on the fact it is profoundly dangerous to animals human or any other kind in open trucks.
      That said we have 5 cats and two of whom actually will carry around their little sweaters and meow until we put them on… winter or’s bizarre really but whatever floats their boats I say….
      Pets offer unconditional love no matter who is getting screwed by the government, a party, crooks whatever. They don’t care if you are fat or thin, blond or grey, Republican or Democrat or communist or an oligarch or whatever. As long as you feed and show affection to them they will give it back to you in spades and who doesn’t need some of that??
      And ps, I never met a pet who couldn’t get something off their body in two seconds if thy didn’t like it….;)

      1. newcatty

        Thanks Merf56. Visualizing your two cats carrying around their little sweaters and meowing until you put them on just gave me my first out loud chuckle of the day. We have two cats and, yes, love is given and received. Your comments on unconditional love from pets is wonderful. Reminded me of a conversation I had with a close family member. She was going through a very painful breakup with her husband. We were doing the dishes and she was quietly crying. She was the mother of a 7 year old and a five year old child. Our cat, the one she had known as a kitten, was watching us. She came up to her and rubbed her head against her leg. It came to me to say: cats are so wonderful, as are young children and babies. They don’t care how we look, our age or judge us in anyway. She smiled and reached down to pet our cat. Put my arm around her and we finished the dishes, as we listened to the kids laugh and play.

    3. Oregoncharles

      My stepson and his wife had a Jack Russell terrier – a charming, if hyperactive dog. But it was so small and so short-haired that it was always cold in the winter, so they had jackets for it that it clearly appreciated. That’s a short=haired dog with the suit on. The pack is cute, but I’m not so sure the onesie is unjustified.

  9. The Rev Kev

    “South Korea fires warning shots at Russian military aircraft”

    Now there is a change. It is usually the US complaining about Russian pilots being unprofessional. I think that this is what might be termed an aerial freedom of navigation exercise. Those islands are just a bunch of rocks that South Korea owns but which Japan wants. The South Koreans declared a South Korean air defense identification zone (KADIZ) back in 2013 and it so happens that part of it overlaps a similar zone (ADIZ) that China declared. Russia’s involvement may be to make a point or two on China’s behalf but from what I have read previously, live fire and shooting off flares may be overdoing it. The normal procedure seems to be to fly parallel with the intruding aircraft and then flash it’s underside to show off the missiles strapped underneath but I will defer to those more knowledgeable about such procedures. Either way, I don’t think this is over.

  10. prodigalson

    ZH has a blurb about food stamps benefits being cut for up to 3M people for those also on welfare. Anyone have any insight or background on this?

    Is this the typical republican punch down on the poor, which is my default assumption, or is there any other logic or reason for this that’s legit?

    side topic: Trump apparently made some comment to the effect that Bolton wants to nuke everyone. Perhaps you should fire him then?

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      Its the default GOP position, but like the debt ceiling deal which makes it a problem for a potential Democratic President despite the celebrations of Pelosi (after all, we can’t spend money on social programs), my guess is Trump is going after perceived weakness. Pelosi just delivered for Trump which doesn’t make sense given what Trump has been accused of by Team Blue.

      “You’d shoot a man in the back?” -Odo
      “Well, it’s the safest way, isn’t it?” -Garak

      Outside of DC and blind loyalists devoted to proving Obama wasn’t heinous, what bloc of voters actually thinks Mitch McConnell is an okay dude with minor disagreements? Trump understands this. His biggest problem is employers of low wage employees like Wal-Mart. They can’t function without food stamps.

      Pelosi wrecked any semblance of unity. Schumer is still a mean, idiot. Trump forced Team Blue to the table after he spent a week standing in solidarity with Pelosi. Trump and the GOP know a few clods like Jeff Flake will do what they are told and only hate that Trump is the one cutting food stamps and not them, so Trump doesn’t care about a few “never Trump Republicans.” He knows they’ll vote for him.

      1. Bugs Bunny

        Only if Team Blue cut food stamps, there would just be euphemisms about it like “bravely taking on entitlements”

        You just sent me down the rabbit hole of Garak quotes. Good start to my evening, doc!

  11. The Rev Kev

    Trump wins 2020
    GOP cuts budgets on everything but dod
    2022 Demos win Congress
    2023 austerity riots in USA USA
    Late 2023 impeached and gone
    2024 Ivanka runs to avenge father’s “overthrow”

    2025 Chelsea sworn in as revenge for Ivanka’s father cheating her mother in 2016

    1. JacobiteInTraining


      As soon as you wake the otherwise somnambulant populace with the kind of austerity that leads to hungry tummies, you get a critical mass of well-armed people willing to do violence to either get food – or to maintain their control over it.

      If that starts in 2023, then in 2023 + 1 week, you get a homegrown militia that starts popping people from whatever ‘Other’ category is deemed blameful, followed by the kind of heavy handed crackdown (ala Ferguson Missouri) that radicalizes pretty much everyone else into shooting at the authorities – when they aren’t shooting at ‘The Other’ at the inevitable checkpoints of burning tires and derelict buses.

      That, of course, is followed by yet more brutal crackdowns from each and every government agency from the city, county, state, and federal apparatus to prove they are ‘doing something’, (the USDA SWAT team will finally get a chance to use their machine guns & get their ounce of glory) followed by the inevitable chaos of a few months – and the beginnings of the descent into feudal estates as whatever local strongmen manage to consolidate power along with dissenting groups of thugs to hold onto the warehouses, mega farms, storage units, grocery stores, and farm machinery to feed their troops….and whatever local peasants bend the knee to them.

      Or maybe I’m just a little short of coffee this morning, and am also being too optimistic. Vae victis.

      1. newcatty

        Yes, “hungry tummies” will be the wake up siren that permeates into every nook and cranny of the country. Right now, not only do we have corporate behemoths like Walmart having their serfs fed through the government Snap program and many provided health care through Medicaid; but many of the other low wage workers are too. Also, what would be interesting is the reaction of the shadow and underground cadre of people who purposefully work for cash and qualify for Snap and Medicaid. Many of these people self – identify as Republican. They like the “conservative” policies of small government, ( will rationalize their blunt hypocrisy of receiving government assistance via welfare programs). They, on the most part, love the punching of the “other” and have a passion for their guns and , some, of their bibles. They often consider themselves “smart” and true Americans as they revel in rugged individualism as a creed to live by. Many have kids, who went to escape the nooks and crannies, join the military. Mother’s whine when their babies are sent to an endless war or, the conflict of the day and, well, their kids are American heros. The hard working poor, and nearly poor, who depend on welfare programs for basic needs of food and health care swept up in this chaos. Can it be stopped? Or will feudalism rule be in plain sight?

    2. neo-realist

      An angry and divided democratic camp in the wake of the Democratic Primary, e.g., Sanders comes in with the lead in electoral college votes but the super delegates throw their votes at Biden or Harris, thereby angering the Sanders supporters and dampening the vote for a democratic candidate. Trump beats a divided democratic house in 2020 that lacks a clear populist message ( and or a good candidate) and loses the swing vote.

    3. bruce

      I don’t think Trump will win 2020. All the analyses I’ve read overlook one thing, what I call the electoral sandbar. The electorate is like a sandbar in the middle of a stream. New grains are constantly accreting on the upstream end – newly registered voters, and at the other end, grains are constantly detaching and rolling downstream to wherever voters go after they die, and political sentiment skews agewise. It’s still a long haul before the election, with yet unknown but doubtless novel and unprecedented atrocities in store for us, so when you’re feeling blue, just imagine Trump voters being lowered to their eternal rest in their MAGA hats.

    4. VietnamVet

      Denial is a strange beast. My last two posts didn’t make it out of moderation. I assume that they were too gloomy even for NC. Yet, I was unable to watch HBOs “Years and Years” after it showed Trump wining in 2020. The show about the future is too realistic. Despite the peat fires, Boris Johnson, or half a million Puerto Ricans protesting austerity, I keep the delusion that if Democracy is restored, greed will be overcome and extinction avoided. I can’t admit that the corporate state won assuring that the rich will get richer until all that is left is wasteland.

  12. Ted

    Elizabeth Warren’s article on stopping the coming economic crisis is worth the read, particularly to get her sense of (1) where economic crises come from and (2) what to do about it. She gets the idea that raising wages to bring down household debt is not enough (the virtue signaling about ensuring only the “women of color” are paid what they deserve is a non-starter though). She goes for cost controls and debt relief for students. Fine but it is core household costs (housing, energy, food, and healthcare) that are killing the host. Slicing and dicing the winners and losers of Warren’s largess in the most unhelpful ways won’t lower household debt one iota.

    It won’t stop the coming credit collapse either, that is baked into a grossly financialized global economy: boom-bust, bigger boom-bigger bust, rinse repeat.

    David Harvey has done great work trying to explain how we will never solve these problems politically if we have no clue of the economic system under capitalism as a totality. I recommend this lecture from 2017.

    1. flora

      Thanks for that link. Today’s ‘left’* needs to learn this stuff and be able to explain in simple terms how the current economy really works, why it is the result of 40 years of rightward economic policy making, and how pulling back in the other direction – to the left (away from continued righward economics) – is required to restore some balance in the economy. Does making billionaires more billionairey and near-monopolies more fully-monopolies make the country stronger? Pulling back the other way from a continued rightward movement; making Main Street stronger; making the middle and working class more economically secure by stopping financial predation, etc.; these are economic and policy moves to the left of today’s current rightward economic setup. Restoring some balance by pulling things left at this point isn’t likely to have people in the streets singing The Internationale. Pulling economics left of where they are now is common sense, imo.

      * I think too many assume ‘left’ means something like early-mid 20th Marxism (seen by many as an anti-capitalist anachronism); or ineffectual theorizing about who said what when and what it meant (academic); or doesn’t mean economics at all but is confined to id pol social justice inclusion (a left that won’t address economics isn’t really a left). Of course, my assessment of what many today think ‘left’ means may be all wrong. ;)

    2. ewmayer

      She’s pretty good on the big items that ail us, including a lot of stuff that Trump used in the 2016 campaign, like the offshoring of most of our manufacturing base – so perhaps even thought DJT has not managed to reverse said trend, we should thank him for getting the kinds of “experts” who’ve been guiding the neoliberal policy disaster these many decades to finally acknowledge the problem and admit the huge lie that is “globalizatio lifts all boats”.

      But there is at least one glaring howler in her piece:

      The administration may breach the debt ceiling in September, leading to economic turmoil that top economists say would be “more catastrophic” than the collapse of Lehman Brothers in 2008.

      Seriously? When has the annual silliness around the debt ceiling ever crashed the economy? The last several occasions have shown just how soft said “spending limit” is – Treasury short-term dipping into various Fedgiv trust funds to the tune of upwards of a half-trillion dollars.

      1. False Solace

        IDK I think it’s pretty clear that mainstream types all think Trump is crazy for starting a trade war. I don’t think he got anyone to acknowledge anything. He just made a lot of noise to little effect. As usual.

        The Left already had a loud critique of globalism. Not that anyone listens to the Left.

  13. EoH

    The “our paychecks bounced” article in the Guardian about the abuse of bankruptcy rules by coal companies so as not to pay their workers is well worth a read.

    Soon-to-be-bankrupt company issues paychecks to make workers go home, thinking everything’s fine. But before those checks can be cashed – 24-48 hours – the company declares bankruptcy. Given that short time frame, it should be child’s play to prove that company executives issued the checks knowing they had insufficient funds to pay them. Looks a lot like fraud to me.

    The bankruptcy filing is enough to throw workers’ claims into the unsecured creditor pile – an obvious area for reform legislation (and to undo Joe Biden’s execrable 2005 bankruptcy legislation) – and thus defer legal claims by workers. It should not be enough to deter state law indictments for check fraud against the individual officers.

    Sadly, that rarely happens. More often, the courts inexplicably agree with company claims that the officers who managed their business into bankruptcy are the only possible ones who could manage then out of it.

    1. dearieme

      In England and Wales the order of priority is (i) the “insolvency practitioners” themselves, (ii) secured creditors – I assume they get the items on which their loan was secured: land, buildings, whatever, (iii) preferential creditors e.g. employees, who are entitled to arrears of pay and holiday pay.

      Note that the employees come above even the taxman who is classed as an unsecured creditor.

    2. Inode_buddha

      Crap like that should be illegal… theft of workers time
      Solution is to make it much easier to puncture the corporate veil so that the directors can actually be held accountable. I have direct family members who survived such treatment as workers….. 40+ yrs of service turned into $45 a month plus medicare under the Pension Benefit Guarantee…. the only reason some people are alive is because its illegal to just up and kill them.

  14. EoH

    White police officers not more likely to shoot minorities? Thanks for debunking the study making that claim. With so much contrary evidence, it looks like gaslighting.

    The subject does cry out for legitimate research on police recruitment and training. In reported shootings, there is often little evidence that any tactic but shooting to kill is attempted. Shots are fired almost immediately and officers virtually empty their clips before they stop firing.

    1. Nakatomi Plaza

      I don’t see that it was debunked. A valid counterpoint was made, but we need evidence rather than speculation. The study looks quite credible and probably deserves to be taken more seriously than that. Besides, I don’t think it’s useful to single out white officers and ignore the underlying issues that implicate law enforcement in general, particularly when the data seems to suggest that race isn’t a driver.

      1. EoH

        That race “isn’t a driver” will take a lot more data to establish. The subject cries out for more and better research in the face of anecdotal reporting that it is frequently the driver, and in the face of this president’s encouragement that his supporters all let their freak flags fly.

  15. The Rev Kev

    “UK to launch European security mission over Iran row”

    Well good luck with that one. I am going to go out on a limb and say that the Spanish will show zero interest in sending their ships there. And who would command this task force? The UK? After that stunt in Gibraltar I think that there is a lot of mistrust in the UK’s actions regards Iran. They probably regard the UK as a cat’s paw for Bolton & Pompeo. The big concern is that any warships would be thrown into the deep end with Iran just so the war party in Washington would have an excuse to attack Iran. Tough luck if that is your people on that warship put deliberately in harm’s way.

  16. doug

    I found the swimmers story interesting. The Aussie sounds like a sore looser.

    How long will those butterfly wings flap and what other breezes might be stirred?

    1. Anon

      Don’t know anything about this guy, but just looking at the photos of the two swimmers standing near each other the shorter one is at a distinct disadvantage. Body shape and length (height) are critical elements when swimming through water, especially longer than 100 meters. Pressure friction from a swimmers body type impacts speed; such that it takes 7 times more power production to go from 3mph to 6mph. That power is produced by the arm stroke and kick of the swimmer; longer arms and legs have the potential for greater power output. Given both swimmers have thousands of practice hours honing their technique and efficiency in the water, the longer body type has the advantage. Drugs or no drugs. (Katy Ladecky is an anomaly.)

  17. Wyoming

    Re: the report on police shootings.

    This study is crap. It’s based on police reports, which video evidence routinely shows to be false, particularly regarding “suspect attacked police, suspect was carrying a weapon” claims to justify violence by police.

    I disagree that this study is crap. The quote above is conflating two different issues. One, false justification for a shooting, and two, racial bias of the shooter. Those are not the same thing and the study does not really addressed the false justification issue. The study is solely about whether there is a statistical racial bias in police shootings. It says there is not.

    The issue of the data being crap is perhaps overstated?

    The WP database used says it is created from:

    This database is based on news reports, public records, Internet databases and original reporting.

    While the Guardian database says

    How does the Guardian count police fatalities?
    So far, we count with traditional reporting on police reports and witness statements, by monitoring regional news outlets, research groups and open-source reporting projects such as the websites Fatal Encounters and Killed by Police.

    But our intention is to progress to a verified crowdsourced system. We want you to inform us as soon as possible if you witness a killing by law enforcement officers or learn of one that has taken place. We want to hear from you if you have further information about a case already included in The Counted….

    It seems quite debatable that this study is crap because the source of the data is from police reports. Some of it is but a large percentage of it is not.

    Another point is that the issues with false police reports do not tend toward what race of officer shot what race of person. Police reports are going to be very accurate with respect of which officer(s) shot the civilian. So I suspect that that basic conclusion is likely correct. (take into account here that I work with my local police department as a volunteer officer). Another thing which is important is that many shootings involve a number of officers and their makeup is often racially mixed. This would need to be accounted for in some way – I note that the data base includes the number of officers involved in the shootings but I could not determine if the researchers accounted for mixed racial groups of officers.

    The issues of justification for a shooting is exactly where the false report issue comes into play. And since this issue is much more amenable to becoming obscured by officer actions which are difficult to verify it is much more likely the case that the racial bias issue would appear here. But this is a different issue than was actually addressed by the research. The two are certainly related somewhat of course. And there is certainly racial bias issues at play as we all know.

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      The two issues are NOT even remotely separate as you incorrectly indicate. And it is disappointing, even disturbing, to see you defend a fundamentally flawed study because it reaches a conclusion that apparently appeals to you.

      The fact set surrounding the shooting is of essential importance in determining whether there was bias and video evidence has caught out cops regularly lying about that in police reports and regularly doubling down when eye-witnesses dispute the official account. Only video evidence in recent years has shown how often and casually police lie about shootings as well as other incidents with blacks (like Sandra Bland). As I note below, whites are also victims of police brutality, but the cases of video evidence contradicting police claims appears to skew considerably to people of color.

      Consider two fact sets. One an armed robbery where, say, the owner of the store escaped but was mildly injured and the robber is still holed up in the store. The police would go to the scene with compelling evidence that the suspect was a danger to the public and shooting him on sight would be warranted (we’ll leave out the case where the suspect tries to negotiate and comes out with both hands up and gets shot anyhow). No one is going to consider bias to be an issue here. The cops were SUPPOSED to capture the suspect and were allowed to use force, and his possession and use of a gun not only makes shooting him reasonable, but failing to shoot him arguably a failure to protect the public and fellow police officers. So who shot first in a case like this is moot; it will likely be a function of who got to the scene first.

      Consider a second case: someone calls in saying they saw a young black man behaving suspiciously. Police think the description matches that of a guy doing break-ins in the general area. They come and find a young black man standing in a doorway, yell “show your hands” and when he pulls his hands out of his pocket, they think they see him holding something and start shooting.

      This parallels the famed Diallo case in NYC, BTW. No positive ID but the cops think a black man is a suspect because he’s a black man in the wrong place. And in the Diallo case, all the cops were white. Look at this incident for another example:

      How about this case, where SF police (white) shot a Hispanic man armed only with a knife within 30 seconds of arriving on the scene? Cops were white. Police report fabricated (see second story):

      This Chicago Tribune study found that 80% of the shots fired by police in Chicago were fired at blacks. The population of Chicago is less than 30% black:

      This is where bias comes in:

      At a recent rally protesting police shootings, Charles Jenkins, a 61-year-old community activist who has spent his entire life on the city’s West Side, said he believes race plays a role in how authorities investigate shootings by police.

      “It’s easier to believe, because they’re black, that an officer was in fear of their life and get(s) off,” he said.

      If there is false justification for the shooting, and that is skewed in cases where the suspect is a person of color, the study could most certainly be masking bias. The video instances of police pulling guns on and shooting unarmed/defenseless men (had their hand up, were prostrate, etc) when the reports said otherwise skew heavily to black men. There are cases of whites treated that way but they are a decided minority. So if you have more white officers shooting or roughing up black men in the cases where the suspect posed no a threat, the doctored reports would hide that. And video evidence has shown in police incidents across the country that what the police did before shooting a suspect is regularly fabricated. You need to parse out those cases to reach any conclusions. And you can’t use police reports because they are garbage in, garbage out on the key issue: was the shooing warranted? The reports will always be written to depict the shooting as reasonable regardless of the actual facts. Then on those not-warranted or grey area shootings, you then would need to parse out the racial composition of the police who showed up and who took the first shot.

      Those are the ones of bias and the study utterly fails to look into what is the central issue.

      1. georgieboy

        This Chicago Tribune study found that 80% of the shots fired by police in Chicago were fired at blacks. The population of Chicago is less than 30% black:

        Yves, this sad datum is not in the least surprising given that black Chicagoans account for approximately 80% of victims and 80% of the people who shoot at victims.

        See for the stats.

        1. Yves Smith Post author

          Not confirmed by the Chicago Tribune. While blacks were the majority of murder victims, the next highest category was race not known. This was from official stats. So your data source is out over its skis. “Not known” is a large category.

          And that’s before you get to the fact that arrests and convictions of blacks are disproportionate, particularly for drug offenses (marijuana). So crime stats are skewed also.

      2. Wyoming

        I must say that if I wrote a response to you similar to yours to me it would be counted out of bounds here – if fact I believe that is why I am on moderation.

        How is your second sentence not to be construed as a personal attack?

        Anecdotes are not data also. The study is about overall statistics. The whole still includes instances which buck the conclusions without negating them.

        Bias exists. Unquestionably. But where is the bias demonstrated in the statistics and where is it not. Where is the data useful and where is the data subject to being questionable.

        I stand by these two points, from the study and my earlier post. And to be frank I don’t think you addressed them at all.

        There ‘are’ two issues here. Related of course. But not synonymous.

        1. The data they used which counted what race of officer shot what race of citizen is going to be very accurate as it is very difficult to fake this. There will always be a few exceptions as you wanted to point out, but that does not negate the general conclusion.

        2. Incorrect police reports will be much more common when it comes to the justification issue. There is a high incidence of this in my opinion. But the study was not about this issue. This is where I disagree very strongly with your posts. It ‘may’ be the central issue to you – fair enough – but that is not what the study was about and attacking it (or me) over my pointing that out seems a bit unfair.

        I work with the police because I am motivated to see the job done properly and the public served as it deserves. I am in the process of competing for a slot in the police academy to become a full sworn officer (at the age of 65 btw). I am not a dilettante. If I can walk the walk at my age I intend to do it. Come what may. I am a socialist politically and voted for Sanders. Everybody who knows me jokes about how liberal I am. I served for 21 years when I was a younger man and don’t regret most of it. Some I do. As emotional as we get about the injustices of life and no matter how much we want to fix things we need to keep perspective. I try very hard to see all sides and think about where we can get considering where we are. And I try not to forget that the only thing which really matters is climate change, as if we don’t fix that nothing else matters.

        I believe in civilization. I have seen enough of its opposite in life and recognize its value. It is not guaranteed. I imagine we are working somewhat in the same direction.

        1. Yves Smith Post author

          You have failed to address any of the points I raised. And let me add a two more that further demonstrate this study to be crap.

          If police think there’s a risk, they will never send a cop in alone. And of course cops in cities usually patrol in pairs.

          When one cop starts shooting a suspect, any other cop on the scene will join in. This is the nature of people who are adrenalined up (which is entirely understandable), to literally be quick trigger (the adrenaline effects are shown by how few shots hit their target in situations like this, on the order of 10% to 15%). And aside from the impact of adrenaline, it’s logical: if one guy starts shooting, the other officers assume he saw a threat they didn’t, like a gun or a move to pull a gun out, and they need to shoot to protect the police shooter, themselves, and any bystanders.

          This understandable pattern means that statistically, you’d expect across all shooting incidents, the composition of the shooters would mirror the demographics of the police overall, which happened.

          The way to ascertain bias would be to determine who made the first shot. The authors did not report on that, and on top of that, this is where the inaccuracy of police reports come into play even if they had looked into that. And there’s no way for an autopsy to determine who shot first since the shots would be too closely spaced in time for there to be medical evidence.

          Second, the study didn’t look into differences across police forces, particularly the shooting rates in communities where the police are vastly “whiter” than the people living in the area versus not.

          In general, this study bears the strong marks of having been done by people who didn’t bother understanding the phenomenon they were analyzing, by talking first with police about their procedures, their data, and with activists who believe abuses are taking place. That might have led them to other ways to cut any data.

  18. ultrapope

    The WSJ article “The Overprotected American Child” was a welcome read. I am always curious as to whether the child overprotection is a unique feature of American culture or if it is more generally a symptom of neoliberalism (assuming there is some difference between the two).

    For starters, the primacy of markets in neoliberalism demands labor be mobile, thus causing communities to deteriorate/fail to form. No community means there’s no trust that neighbors/others will provide support. Market primacy also dictates that local news sources offer sensationalist stories about crime, violence, etc. Thus the perception of community safety is pretty warped.

    Can any readers not currently living in the US, ex-pat or otherwise, comment? Is overprotective parenting a thing in that country’s society? And if so, how extensively has your country embraced neoliberalism (probably best to use social safety nets and labor rights as a proxy)?

    1. Janie

      While visiting Japan, we frequently saw small groups of uniformed school children about 8 and older riding subways with no adult present. It was their routine; they knew exactly how to navigate the system.

    2. marieann

      I am in Canada.

      My brother and his wife were visiting from the UK last month. They babysit their grandsons and often talk about driving them to school, I asked why they couldn’t walk by themselves, the eldest is 10.

      The stories I got about the dangers they would encounter!!. One problem they mentioned were the busy roads and the lack of crossing monitors, I suggested lobbying the schools and local government to increase the numbers…Oh!…that won’t work as they aren’t really necessary because everyone drives their kids ???.

      When my kids were in school we were in the neighbourhood watch, where you put a sign in your window and kids knew you were available in emergencies

      1. barefoot charley

        When I became a Big Kid (fifth grade?) in Chicago, I was a patrol boy entrusted with herding little kids across the street toward school.

        An article on NC awhile ago covered American tourists enraged by Copenhagen mothers parking their baby carriages in front of coffeeshops they entered. Upshot: Danish moms think American moms are crazy.

        1. Merf56

          Well Denmark is a lot safer than many an American town let alone a major city here …

        2. CanCyn

          I too was part of a student safety patrol when I was in grade 5 – same thing, I herded younger kids across the street safely. That elementary school was right next door to the townhouse where I grew up, so yes I knew the way, but I was never walked to school by my parents, not even in kindergarten. I got there on my own with friends. From grade 6 to 8, I went to a middle school that was about a 30 minute walk from home. I don’t remember kids getting rides to school. In good weather, we rode our bikes, without helmets, navigating a busy street. In winter, we walked. I’m sure there was research done at some point that indicated that a lot of childhood obesity could be eliminated by a daily walk to and from school. And I think someone else has proven that there are better odds of getting in a car accident while driving your kid to school then there are of your kid getting abducted or otherwise hurt while walking.

    3. Todde

      When i walked to school one day there was an armed stand off with a guy with a 357, a couple of hostages and a half ounce of cocaine.

      Couldn’t ride the bus as the last driver was busted for selling drugs to the kids.

      O the memories.

  19. Ptb

    Re: US shale (natgas, the focus of this particular article) doomed no matter what

    Also international glut in the next 3-5 years and associated NG coming out of shales used for oil production.

    The updated New York state energy policy is a big one. In a complicated scheme I don’t fully understand, it effectively rescues nuclear, by: (1) making nukes eligible for a special category of credits, whose amount happens to offset roughly the full amount of the “alternative payment” (ie max penalty) that can be used by a producer/utility who doesn’t get and didn’t buy renewable energy credits. (2) requiring the implementation details for the renewable energy credits to be such that they result in generation sources without credits to be eventually limited to 30% I think. (Currently natgas is 40% in NYS. With projected growth, its absolute amount looks to be capped at current levels) .

    If other states follow suit, Nukes will be coming back, subsidized out of economic necessity.

  20. Wukchumni

    Just saw the second black bear of the year for about a minute, leisurely walking in the meadow below our cabin.

    An unusual 2-tone two year old bruin, it was all brown except from the back of the neck down 2 feet of it’s back and a foot down the sides, where it was dirty blonde-as if it’d gotten into some hydrogen peroxide-a Billy Idol bear. Weighed around 175 or thereabouts.

  21. Summer

    Boris Johnson wins. So while the Brits will have plenty of work to do all the air will get sucked out of the room discussing his personality instead of following the money.

    1. zagonostra

      Just like in the U.S.

      When you live under such an oligarchy, there is always some crisis or the other that takes priority over boring stuff such as healthcare and pollution. If the nation is facing external invasion or diabolical subversion, who has the time to worry about overcrowded hospitals and polluted rivers? By manufacturing a never-ending stream of crises, a corrupt oligarchy can prolong its rule indefinitely.”

      Yuval Noah Harari

  22. Matthew G. Saroff

    Boris Johnson is the most spectacular example of a Tory politician failing up since ……… checks notes ……… Winston Churchill.

    Serious here: Chamberlain was forced out because the failure of the Norway campaign, run by Winston Churchill.

  23. Jeremy Grimm

    RE: “Elite Anxiety: Paul Collier’s ‘Future of Capitalism’” —
    I think this is an odd link for today’s readings. A brief extract from the link typifies the rest of the link: “…there’s no visible story, no connection between the contents of one paragraph and the next and hardly any connection between one chapter and another. Rather, it’s a bedlam of foregone conclusions…”
    I was left with the overall impression that all good people must avoid Collier’s book because it was badly written and boring, and besides contains some polemics and polemical ideas — but nothing in the link really clarified or supported why I should have that opinion of Collier’s book.

    Out of curiosity I searched for something on Collier’s book that might let me get a peek at a little of the writing. The link [] appears to contain several paragraphs extracted from the book. I know it’s hard to evaluate the flow and organization of a book from reading a few unrelated paragraphs but this limited sample doesn’t immediately support the assertions made in the “Elite Anxiety” link. So just for fun I poked around the “Notes on Liberty” website. I found this: “FURTHER CRACKS IN THE GLOBAL WARMING PROPHECY” [] where “Recently Finnish scientists published research that further debunks claims about the role of humans in generating global warming. Their thesis is that global temperatures are controlled primarily by cloud cover …” was followed with this “In his Counterrevolution of Science (1955), F. A. Hayek wrote about the dangerous hubris of “science worshippers” who wanted to extend their theories, which at best had narrow application and limited experimental database, to reshape the life of entire humankind.” On second thought — the website’s title “Notes on Liberty” should have been a giveaway to its origins.

  24. nippersmom

    Elizabeth Warren Wants Green Bombs, not a Green New Deal

    This should come as no surprise. Warren is, and always has been, a hawk.

    1. Foy

      I think if you do a search on the NC website for “Elon” or “Musk” or “Tesla” you will find oodles of articles that NC has linked to about Elon Musk and the goings on with Musk and Tesla and his other boondoggles like the Boring tunnel project…none of them good.

  25. Tom Bradford

    YeeHa. Just found out that I might be getting a few cents out of the $14.7 million Citibank have offered to pay depositors for not systematically deducting impermissible fees for conducting foreign exchange from dividends and/or cash distributions issued by foreign companies, and owed to me and other holders from 2006 -2018.

  26. Summer

    RE: Low, Negative Interest Rates
    “Great, no safe investments worth having, more insane valuations….”

    So looks like a lot of people are cashing out of the asset bubble and everything is being done to keep it propped up.
    Just don’t call it a Pyramid / Ponzi sheme (wink-wink)

  27. Henry

    Regarding the incident involving Chinese swimmer Yang Sun, this report is more fact-based from an Australian media:

    “While athletes are being asked their opinions about Sun, this case raises an important question they should all be asking themselves.

    If it was you that night, confronted with a three-person doping control entourage, with only one properly accredited, while another videos you without permission, and yet another extracts your blood before you become aware of the flawed process, what would you do?

    Entire careers rest on this, a lifetime of training and performance.

    To be called a drug cheat is sport’s worst slur. If the public is to have faith in athletes, then athletes need to be able to have faith in the system that tests them.

    There is still another chapter to play out in the case of Sun — in the pool and out — but what we know right now is that an independent investigation found the swimmer hasn’t failed a drug test, and that the anti-doping system has failed him.”

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