Links 7/29/19

The world’s top tourism spots want you to stay home next holiday season Scroll

Safari tourist snaps could produce useful conservation data Ars Technica

Heatwave: think it’s hot in Europe? The human body is already close to thermal limits elsewhere The Conversation

Warm Water Is Melting Glaciers 100 Times Faster Than We Thought Motherboard

How Science Got Trampled in the Rush to Drill in the Arctic Politico



Brazil president raises jail as possibility for Greenwald WaPo

“THE RISK IS WELL PAID LOL” Intercept. Part 7 in the series, based on documents leaked to Greenwald et al.

Computers can’t tell if you’re happy when you smile MIT Technology Review Reflections on a National and Global Celebration Los Angeles Review of Books


2020 Presidential Contribution Data by State Pro Publica

Elizabeth Warren is right to worry about private equity looting FT

What Kamala Harris Believes NYT

Mississippi reporters confront the ‘Billy Graham Rule’ Columbia Journalism Review

The Iowa Circus Rolling Stone. Matt Taibbi.

What Progressives Hopefully Learned From Russiagate Caitlin Johnstone

The Case of Al Franken New Yorker

Democrats in Disarray

Nancy Pelosi Wants You to Believe She and AOC Never Had Beef Vice


Rory Stewart just might be the leader we need in the war against no-deal Brexit ‘by any means necessary’ Independent. “So it is, Rory Stewart, that a lonely nation – or about half a nation – turns its eyes to you. As Philip Hammond appears to agree, the former soldier/adventurer/royal tutor with the look of a disease-ravaged teddy bear is the closest thing the rebel alliance has to a charismatic MP.” No comment.

Boris Johnson plans to give the EU the cold shoulder by refusing to visit Brussels or any European leaders as Michael Gove plots daily ’emergency’ meetings over No Deal Brexit Daily Mail

EU decision on equivalence set to heighten UK post-Brexit fears FT

Brexit: aerospace preparedness

737 MAX

Work on production line of Boeing 737 Max ‘not adequately funded’ BBC

Boeing MAX Pain Spans Globe, Hurting Carriers’ Profit and Growth WSJ

Pontifications: MAX market share holding steady, so far Leeham News

Waste Watch

Scrap Collector: US stands as lone OECD opponent of Basel plastic amendment WasteDive

Everybody Hates the Key Card. Will Your Phone Replace It? NYT

6 reasons you should buy “slow furniture” TreeHugger

‘We Are Swamped’: How a Global Trash Glut Hurt a $25 Billion Industry WSJ


Congress questions Centre’s airport privatisation process The Hindu

One woman’s dogged campaign to protect Mumbai’s mangroves Scroll

Class Warfare

Here’s the next disaster in retail. Hint: it’s not J.C. Penney dying Yahoo Finance

Little-known makers of generic drugs played central role in opioid crisis, records show WaPo

Oregon vowed not to become California — and passed sweeping housing crisis legislation Seattle Times

The Elite Club That Rules the Diamond World Is Starting to Crack Bloomberg


Russian police crack down on protesters during the largest demonstrations in a decade Vox

Putin opponent Navalny may have been exposed to ‘toxic agent’: doctor AFP

‘Sick’: Black rag dolls made to ‘slam into walls’ pulled from shelves over racism complaints (PHOTO) (The Rev Kev)


Hong Kong reaches a protest point of no return Asia Times

HKFP Lens: Frontline shots from Hong Kong Island’s night of mayhem as protesters flee tear gas, rubber bullets – Part 1 Hong Kong Free Press. Includes links to part 2.

Years of ignoring peaceful protests fuels Hong Kong violence: jailed activist  AFP

Genocides begin in the wilderness, far from prying eyes – in Ottoman Turkey as well as Nazi Germany Independent. Robert Fisk.


Iran calls European fleet in the Gulf ‘hostile’ and ‘provocative’ Al Jazeera

Did Trump Just Threaten to Attack Iran With Nukes? The American Conservative. Scott Ritter.

Late-colonial convulsions Qantara

Trump Transition

Ratcliffe tapped to replace Coats as U.S. spy chief Reuters (furzy)

Antidote du Jour (via):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. PlutoniumKun

    737 MAX

    Work on production line of Boeing 737 Max ‘not adequately funded’ BBC

    Boeing MAX Pain Spans Globe, Hurting Carriers’ Profit and Growth WSJ

    Pontifications: MAX market share holding steady, so far Leeham News

    Its already hurting Ryanair, who have 135 on order. Ryanair are very much a leader in Europe, if they cancel, its a deep problem for Boeing beyond the direct loss.

    Ryanair has 135 of the 737 Max models on order, the first five of which are due for delivery in the autumn, but they will not be able to fly until regulators have declared the plane safe.

    O’Leary warned that Ryanair may not have any of the planes ready by next summer unless Boeing “gets its shit together” in making upgrades required for regulators to allow the plane to fly.

    The grounding of the global fleet of 737 Max aircraft has already taken its toll on Ryanair, forcing the airline to halve its growth targets for next year as it scrapped 30,000 planned flights and warned it could close bases at airports.

      1. PlutoniumKun

        I suspect that most airlines are willing to swallow their losses up to the end of the year, they have little choice (plus they all think they can get some money out of Boeing). But if MoA’s stories are correct – i.e. the rudder issue and the previously discussed suggestion that the flight computer may not have the capacity to handle the software upgrades – then the drip drip drip of constant delays into 2020 would kill Boeing, one by one their customers will switch until it becomes a flood.

        I do find it interesting that relative ‘insiders’ like Leeham and Mentour Pilot still seem quite sanguine about the whole thing. They may be right that Boeings engineers will have it sorted by October-ish. But it may be that they are a little too invested and in love with the 737 to be able to see its past its sell by date and Boeing made an epic error in trying to keep it going.

        1. Carolinian

          My problem with many of these stories is the implication that an airplane has to be perfect to be allowed in the air versus the reality that no machine is perfect and that’s why we have human pilots. Clearly MCAS was a gross mistake and a tragedy waiting to happen. That’s less clear with the rudder cable problem. If they armor the cables but a broken fan blade punctures some other vital area then a crash might still happen. They can’t armor the whole plane. It would be too heavy to take off.

          We’ve just seen a story about airlines ignoring the European directive to change Airbus software so it doesn’t automatically cut off after 149 hrs. Which is to say Airbus planes are likely not perfect either.

          But Boeing is still entirely to blame for their arrogance which has forsaken the public trust. The irony is that if Boeing goes down the incompetent execs will be at fault and get golden parachutes and the blameless workers will get unemployment.

          1. Polar Socialist

            The case with the cables is not about having a perfect aircraft, but about the FAA notifying Boeing that with these new, heavier fan blades, the rule book says you need to protect the cables down here. But after Boeing replying that it would cause delays and all sort of difficulties to comply with the rules FAA gave them a pass anyway.
            Now, the rest of the world trusted FAA but not anymore. The “fear” is that rest of the world won’t validate 737 until this is fixed, too. No matter what the FAA says…

            1. Carolinian

              Yes it’s all about trust because many people are inherently afraid of flying even though statistically it’s quite safe. But you should probably be more concerned about airline maintenance which is sometimes outsourced to flaky or third world contractors to save money. I believe this was the problem with previous fan blade incidents as they are supposed to be frequently inspected. Just armoring the cables doesn’t mean blades won’t pierce the cabin and cause a catastrophic decompression or a woman to be sucked halfway out a window (this happened).

    1. bruce

      The 737 may never take off again. Think about it; boarding an airplane is an act of trust in the technology and the pilots. There’s a little snippet of code in the flight control software that will take over and point the plane you are riding in a steeper than 45 degree dive. Imagine what that’s like. You might have time for one more text. Nobody at Boeing cares, they let it happen a second time. Nobody at the FAA cares, they let it happen a second time. I’m taking the train.

      1. BoyDownTheLane

        I haven’t flown in years. I drove from the middle of New England to DC and back this weekend and, aside from the accidents and traffic jams (two going down, the first on the Mass. Pike and the second trying to go around the Big Apple via the Gov. Mario Cuomo Zee bridge, and one massive — with detour — on I-91 Northbound below Hartford after midnite), the 100-mph multi-car races on the stretch in New York between the Bronx and Darien might well have killed us.

  2. Keith in Modesto

    I clicked on the link to the “black rag dolls made to slam into walls” article and after scanning through it looked at the comments. A lot of complaining about “professional victims” and the use of racist terms, like the n-word, but with the g’s replaced with q’s. One of the comments with racists terms had “Tulsi” in the username. So maybe just bots. It’s very disheartening. Online commentary seems to be degrading our humanity.

  3. Ember Brody

    Re: EU decision on equivalence set to heighten UK post-Brexit fears FT

    Brussels will this week strip five countries of some market access rights, in a move set to heighten British fears that the system the City of London will rely on to serve EU customers after Brexit fails to offer a stable and permanent regime because it can be withdrawn.

    According to a document seen by the Financial Times, the European Commission will deem that Canada, Brazil, Singapore, Argentina and Australia no longer regulate credit rating agencies as rigorously as the EU does, removing a status that made it possible for European banks to rely on those ratings.

    The move marks the first time that such access rights, known as equivalence provisions, have been withdrawn, although some temporary permissions for Switzerland were allowed to lapse earlier this year.

    Can you hear that sucking sound? That’s the sound of Britain’s economy going down the sh!tter. United Kingdom, 1707 – 2020, RIP. Can’t say it will be much lamented.

    1. PlutoniumKun

      Yes, I think that now that Johnson is in power, the EU will find no incentive to play nice – they will start to stick the knife in. There is no secret but that many regions in the EU are eyeing up businesses they can take from the UK and have been for some time, but national leaders and Brussels have been trying to keep this under control in order not to be seen to be acting in bad faith.

      Johnson and his Ultra buddies think that playing tough will see them over the line and they can make the EU leaders out to be the bad guys, at least as far as the UK public is concerned. But they haven’t considered that the EU may not react passively – they have their own electorates to think of – and those electorates will respond positively if they see their leaders aggressively extract businesses from the City of London or elsewhere.

      1. Monty

        It’s hard to believe they don’t know all this. Yet, the soldier on. Motive wise, what’s really going on?

        1. Stephen Gardner

          The charge of the lightweight brigade. With Bojo Hurrumph leading the charge into the valley of economic death what could go wrong?

  4. The Rev Kev

    “Heatwave: think it’s hot in Europe? The human body is already close to thermal limits elsewhere”

    This topic has caused serious discussion in the halls of the Pentagon. If so many countries start experiencing extreme heat, how is the Pentagon ever going to be able to send in US troops to invade them? It’s not like US Marines can go into battle while trying to hold up umbrellas against the hot sun, can they now? And how are they supposed to go into combat with all their battle-rattle if their water weighs more than their gear? Fortunately DARPA is on the case and has developed special suits that US troops will be able to wear that will enable them to endure these hot climes. These Special Tactical Insertion Load Limiter suits are only first generation so only a small force have been issued with these S.T.I.L.L. suits. The First Response Expeditionary Echelon Men have already been receiving their training-

    1. Lee

      We won’t have to go over to “fight them there”, they’ll be migratingen masse to get as far away from the equator as they can. Then we can fight them here. Assuming there is a here here.

        1. Oregoncharles

          Frank Herbert has an extraordinary record as a prophet. Of course, that’s a lot of what speculative fiction is about.

          Not incidentally, Dune is about deterrence and Mutual Assured Destruction – that governs the political background and the technology in use.

          There’s a lot in there about AI, too.

    2. MichaelSF

      It seems more likely they’d focus on Mobile Infantry powered exoskeleton/suits.

      IIRC Analog or Galaxy magazine had a story, umm, 50+ years ago, about the evolution of battle armor. It worked its way up to Star Wars “walkers” level and then simplified (through the application of greater complexity) until the soldier looked to almost be in normal fatigues and rucksack, except for the orbiting satellite “suit” elements around the soldier.

  5. Eric Blood Axe

    I still think there are ways to reduce the amount of solar radiation to reach earth. From reflective dust in the high atmosphere, to large satellites orbiting the earth above the equator.

    1. Louis Fyne

      More birth control pills and condoms are easier. Just saying.

      Population growth is at/near zero in the developed world (but for migration and higher fertility rate of migrants).

      Not so elsewhere due to cost, religiosity and cultural norms.

      1. Phacops

        Exactly. Overpopulation is the foundational issue for the human destruction of our environment.

        1. richard

          I’m sure you’ve seen this graph before Phacops, but CO2 levels on earth start to spike in the early to mid 19th century, from around 280ppm where they had been since before we humans hit the scene, to around 400 where they are now. Doesn’t that clearly suggest that the foundation of climate change is a historic industrial change, rather than the number of people on earth? I’m not suggesting all three aren’t connected of course. But if we had to choose a root cause, or foundation, for the most pressing environmental problem in history, my money is on connecting it to industrialization and and the culture of laissez-faire capitalism. The number of humans, though it has also become a contributing factor, seems closer to an effect than a cause.

          1. Briny

            Further evidenced in the drop in average temperatures in North, Central and South America after European diseases radically reduced the native populations. It’s all of a piece. each reinforcing the other.

            1. Oregoncharles

              Apparently there’s a similar drop in temperatures after the Black Death drastically reduced the population of Europe (and maybe more – how widespread was it?). Huge amounts of land were left fallow, storing carbon instead of releasing it.

              That was before the Industrial Revolution and the heavy use of coal.

          2. ewmayer

            We all enjoy the things industrialization and technology have given us – material comforts, vastly improved health and longer lifespan. No country is going to voluntarily go back to subsistence living. OTOH, we can enjoy most of those fruits of progress without engaging in the kind of orgy of overconsumption economists tell us is key to “economic growth”. That’s the “culture of laissez-faire capitalism” you mention.

            At the same time, population unavoidably acts as a multiplier here, and it seems to be a self-imposed taboo in the MSM to mention it.

            Instead of a sustainable “reasonable global population, enjoying a reasonably good standard of living” we have grossly overshot in both aspects, and the resulting “too many people, consuming too much stuff” is literally killing the planet.

      2. jrs

        The developed world needs to do something about it’s high consumption, the developing world something about it’s high birth rates.

        1. Oh

          Growth of anything is bad for the planet. A large number of people in the world have been told that growth is good. This is one of the main reasons for high consumption, population growth, etc. It’s going to be tough to change this mind set.

      3. John Wright

        Slowing/halting population growth is rarely mentioned as alleviating ANY looming resource issue (such as climate, fresh water, over fishing, top soil loss, or energy EROI)

        It is not a topic a politician or member of the “population growth is always good” industries in the USA ( examples: real estate, media(print/broadcast/cable/internet), big sports, tourist industry, finance, retail, and pharma) will mention in polite company.

        We are observing OTHER populations shrinking throughout the world as insects, trees and other wildlife disappear.

        Perhaps faith in human ingenuity allows us to believe other species are not leading indicators of our demise.

      4. Eclair

        Genocides work as ‘population reduction’ methods as well. Extermination programs ‘cleared’ the land and made it available for the european white settler populations that surged onto the north and south American continents from over-crowded Europe.

        What constantly amazes are the rationalizations that we humans tell ourselves as we round up and murder the members of our species who are ‘different.’

      5. dcrane

        Getting billions of people to use birth control and condoms does not sound easy, nor easier than potential tech solutions (if they even exist) such as the one proposed above. However, I’m not criticizing the point that yes, this all boils down to overpopulation/overconsumption.

        1. Jeremy Grimm

          Birth control and condoms are the easy solution to overpopulation. The hard solution results from doing nothing to reduce birth rates. In 1950 there were just over 2.5 billion human souls. In 2019 this has grown to 7.7 billion humans. Obtaining enough water and food loom as potential problems for maintaining this population. The rising seas and increasing temperatures will force many of these people to migrate. The hard solution is the stuff of disaster movie thrillers with an unhappy ending.

        2. MichaelSF

          It is difficult enough to get people to neuter their pets. IIRC the pet food industry is huge, and a 90% reduction in the number of pet animals (preferably through spay/neuter) would probably not be a bad thing, especially considering the large number of strays and animals in shelters that no one wants and so they are destined for death.

          As with children, there should be “just enough” and every one of them should be wanted and in a good home.

      6. Procopius

        Religiosity and cultural norms change quite quickly once people are confident that somehow they will be taken care of in their old age. When medical science assured people that women did not have to start bearing children at 13 years of age in order to be fairly sure that at least two would live long enough to care for them (that’s what “honor thy father and mother” means, by the way, not standing up when they enter the room) they started marrying later. When societies found it wise to provide social insurance because there were still too many old people living in miserable poverty, the birth rates fell even further. I think the population problem would have solved itself if we had time, but we won’t have time and Mother Nature will take care of it for us. I think world population is going to go down to a few million, at most, before we construct an underground ecology such as Asimov described in his stories. I’m thinking Caves of Steel, here, but his description of Trantor is much the same.

    2. Henry Moon Pie

      And do you know exactly what effect these screening efforts would have on plant life?

      1. Briny

        Geoengineering isn’t a “safe topic” in many venues even though we are almost certain to use some in the future. Heck, in a very real sense, massive tree/grassland plantings are geoengineering albeit more “natural.”

    3. Jeremy Grimm

      We are already doing geoengineering on a large scale. We’ve added massive amounts of CO2 to the atmosphere and massive amounts of nitrogen fertilizer to the seas. Those geoengineering projects aren’t working out too well. Now you want to add reflective dust to the high atmosphere? A couple of thermonuclear explosions will do the trick — just don’t get carried away. It takes some years for dust to settle out of the high atmosphere. Wouldn’t you rather put dust in lower atmosphere so the stuff might settle out faster in case you use too much?

      I’m glad you prefer reflective dust to SO2 — best leave that to the volcanoes. But why reflective dust? Why not giant space mirrors? Space mirrors would be much ‘cooler’ — although someone might make fun of that idea:
      “Prof. Philip Mirowski keynote for ‘Life and Debt’ conference” [ ] — you can jump ahead to minute 35:00 or so or if you have a short attention span jump to minute 49:00 and the slide “Proof of Concept Underway This Year” — shows one solar-radiation management stratospheric [SRM-S] proof of concept, which Mirowski discusses in his presentation.
      The slide at minute 35:00 of this presentation:

      “Neoliberal Biopolitics
      1) Short-term holding action: Global warming denialism {agnotology}
      2) Intermediate term: Immobilize more direct carbon emission abatement through elaborate carbon trading schems.
      3) Long term utopian: Foster entrepreneurial attempts to restructure and re-engineer Nature through commercialized segment of scientists under science fiction scenarios of planet geoengineering.”

      suggests the danger of planet geoengineering.There’s too much potential profit there and so many ways to make things — bad as they are — much much worse.

  6. ambrit

    That New Yorker piece on Al Franken’s fall from grace is disturbing on many fronts. It made me wonder if the feminist movement had become co-opted by ‘idpol’ activists.
    I’m an older Western culture socialized male. What does the female cohort of the commenteriat think? Is this a social phase change or just a transitory moment of political opportunism?

    1. Pat

      I have a fairly fluid view of harassment, and find that the pendulum has swung too far.Too many years in the entertainment industry, I guess. I think there needs to be a recognition that there is a distinction between stupidity about norms shifting and predatory behavior. And comedy is a hot bed of tasteless behavior, comes from the need to push boundaries to do it.

      Franken was not a predator, Tasteless, stupid and offensive but not predatory. Those who went after him were IMO. Forcing him out was sheer political calculation. He wasn’t beloved by the donor class, and came from a state with a Democratic governor. Gillibrand wanted to better position herself to run for President (and this coupled well with the good work she was doing in regard to harassment in the military). Others joined in to look like they “got it”. Meanwhile far more disturbing incidents of sexual predatory behavior were downplayed or ignored.

      It will take time to truly establish that boys do not need to be boys and shouldn’t be rules along with boundaries that still allow for polite non threatening compliments, and yes I find you attractive is it mutual approaches. The Franken thing not only wasn’t helpful in that, it has slowed finding those norms in this woman’s opinion,

      (Gillibrand still has a ways to go to being the worst Senator from NY but it isn’t from lack of trying.)

      1. Oh

        The tasteless, offensive humor that the skits employed in front of the troops at the expense of the fairer sex is disgusting. Franken enacted these skits (that were from the 60’s and 70’s) and apparently the male chauvanist pigs in the troops liked them.

        1. ambrit

          Tasteless and offensive is a subjective ‘thing.’
          As professors of advertising will tell you, the two things that “sell” are sex and death. Soldiers in the field already have the death part of that equation. The “Entertain the Troops” dog and pony shows supply the sex. Voila! You have just “sold” a war.

      2. False Solace

        Cry me a river. Franken was groping female voters at the State Fair while taking pictures with them. Same stuff Biden did except Franken’s targets were of legal age. It would have been considered rude for these women to protest at the time or make a big deal out of it. This is essentially gaslighting them — making them question the reality of what happened and “daring” them to object, knowing that because they are mere commoner women and he is a famous, wealthy man with high status, people will tell them to get over it or accuse them of exaggerating. Pretty sleazy if you ask me.

        The state of Minnesota has millions of people eligible to serve as Senator. Many thousands of whom could do a better job than a former nightclub comedian who wasn’t particularly progressive to begin with. I still miss Wellstone.

    2. Lee

      I too am an older Western culture socialized male, so take this FWIW.

      Such is the pervasive effect of class interest that all ascriptive identity based political movements get co-opted to some extent by the more well off members of idpol groups. I haven’t seen many big news stories about Me Too maids or assembly line workers, for instance.

      1. Geo

        There have been efforts to highlight those types of cases but it’s hard to get people and the media to care if there’s no celebrity angle. The College entrance scandal is a perfect comparison. How much attention would that have gotten if it hadn’t had tabloid fodder attached? It would have probably been only a few articles ignored by most and forgotten immediately. Same for #metoo. No one cared until it was taken up by and impacted really famous people.

    3. flora

      I have a slightly different view of Franken’s ousting by the, what I would call the Clinton Machine wing of the national Dem party . (See Donna Brazille’s book “Rigged” for more about Clinton taking over the direction and finances of the party by paying off the DNC’s debts in 2016. I haven’t read anything to suggest the Clinton financial control has ended.) The Clinton Machine wing and the older, egalitarian, Main Street-focused wing (most of the base), are not on the same page when it comes to policies, imo.

      With that introduction, it’s interesting the Dem estab not only ousted Sen. Franken (D-Minnesota), they prevented Rep. Keith Ellison (D-Minnesota) from becoming DNC chair (and -wait for it, this was followed by charges of domestic abuse and anti-sem). Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-Minnesota) is being charged with anti-sem and the Dem estab is looking to find a primary challenger to her.

      What is it about Minnesota? Well, the Minnesota Dem voters come out of the strong, older, egalitarian Democratic–Farmer–Labor Party . (Labor – who knew. Think of Humphrey, Mondale, and Wellstone.) The Minnesota 2016 primary results were Sanders – ~62%, Clinton~ 38 %. Sanders won 46 delegates, Clinton won 31 delegates.

      So, foil bonnet time, I think the Clinton machine does not like Minnesota Dem base voters. Any stick to beat a dog (or an “uneducated” voter). Idpol is used like a McCarthyite witch hunt to punish egalitarian Dems for stepping out of line and making the wrong – for the Machine – choices on policy, imo. /foil bonnet off.

      How else explain Franken bad; Biden and Bill good? My 2 cents.

      1. shtove

        On that point in Rigged – are the Democrats still on the contractual hook for the clearing of those debts by the Clinton Foundation? Or was it a one-and-done deal? I’m not aware of any leak of the black-letter terms.

      2. flora

        adding: Though not a politician, imo the Machine took out Garrison Keillor – creator of the Minnesota Public Radio show A Prairie Home Companion – in 2017, accusing him of ‘inappropriate behavior’. The ‘inappropriate behavior’ described was pretty tame stuff, imo. They banished rebroadcasts of the show. They professionally ‘disappeared him’.

        1. False Solace

          Yeah, Keillor has been spinning at about 4000 RPM since the day he was fired / let go / whatever wealthy famous people call getting sacked. His story about an isolated incident that was misinterpreted doesn’t add up.

          An investigation by MPR News, however, has learned of a years-long pattern of behavior that left several women who worked for Keillor feeling mistreated, sexualized or belittled. None of those incidents figure in the “inappropriate behavior” cited by MPR when it severed business ties.

          Nor do they have anything to do with Keillor’s story about putting a hand on a woman’s back:

          • In 2009, a subordinate who was romantically involved with Keillor received a check for $16,000 from his production company and was asked to sign a confidentiality agreement which, among other things, barred her from ever divulging personal or confidential details about him or his companies. She declined to sign the agreement, and never cashed the check.

          • In 2012, Keillor wrote and publicly posted in his bookstore an off-color limerick about a young woman who worked there and the effect she had on his state of arousal.

          • A producer fired from The Writer’s Almanac in 1998 sued MPR, alleging age and sex discrimination, saying Keillor habitually bullied and humiliated her and ultimately replaced her with a younger woman.

          • A 21-year-old college student received an email in 2001 in which Keillor, then her writing instructor at the University of Minnesota, revealed his “intense attraction” to her.

          In an interview with MPR News Tuesday afternoon, [the president of MPR] said the company’s separation of business interests from Keillor came after it received allegations of “dozens” of sexually inappropriate incidents involving Keillor and a woman who worked for him on A Prairie Home Companion. He said the allegations included requests for sexual contact and descriptions of unwanted sexual touching.

          Investigation: For some who lived in it, Keillor’s world wasn’t funny

        2. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

          Keillor committed the unspeakable crime of briefly placing his hand on the back of a woman in a backless dress.

          I’m not clear what the #MeToo faithful wish our inter-gender relations would become. Understood that institutionalized gender discrimination, bad faith, and bad actions need redress. But if a friendly pat is out of bounds do they suggest a consent app where people agree the legal T&Cs of a handshake in advance? A glance at a new dress or hairdo? Is “you look nice today” really going to be out of bounds? Or it’s gender opposite “hey that’s a nice tie”?

          What a sad world. Everyone triggered by anything and everything. When we’re done with our modern day Bonfire of the Vanities nothing will remain.

          (And precisely *what* were the motivations of the woman who wore the backless dress? Given the new set of rules wouldn’t every male be able to object and say they were triggered by the excess public display of skin? If so then I suggest women subscribing to the new rules should all don a head-to-toe burka if they do not want to risk losing their jobs).

          1. Plenue

            “And precisely *what* were the motivations of the woman who wore the backless dress?”

            Maybe she liked how it looked on her, for her own benefit? Or she liked the feel of air on her back? Men really need to get over themselves and stop assuming that women looking nice is always inherently done for the benefit of men (probably the stupidest example of that type of thinking is Jordan Peterson ranting about how red lipstick is meant to remind men of engorged labia).

            1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

              Excellent comment. But I think my question remains: with the new rules should she not cover up because the sight of her bare skin might trigger someone?

    4. ambrit

      Adding to my earlier query above, I consider the development and wide dissemination of a chemical birth control method, the Pill, as being an inflection point in human culture. Is the ‘modern’ feminist movement, as differentiated from the “old” feminist movement, such as “Votes for Women,” wrestling with the changes in the relations between the sexes that an efficient method of control over a woman’s fertility has engendered?
      I may suggest that this latest irruption of political fighting is based on cynical motives, but the underlying question of “sexism” does partake of a power struggle. Like Eve eating of the apple in the garden, now that women have tasted the freedom of gaining control over their fertility, is this a next step in a rearrangement of the relationship between the sexes?
      Interesting times indeed.

  7. Bugs Bunny

    The NYT interview with Kamala Harris was a real disappointment. She comes off as not really having any coherent position on the issues.

    Why is she getting such good poll numbers?

    1. voteforno6

      If the U.S. had a healthy, functioning democracy, I have a hard time believing that she would even be running for President.

        1. Pat

          Gosh, nice hill to climb to probably lose a portion of the interest.

          I really would like everyone to start with legislation that removes all the special protections for lenders regarding student loans. Just give the borrower the same protection of bankruptcy and garnishment restrictions. After giving them that tool to negotiate their debt, then work on finding other ways to lessen this millstone.

        2. Otis B Driftwood

          In other words, a limited, impractical and confusing idea from a consummate panderer.

    2. a different chris

      Because she doesn’t have “any coherent position on the issues”. It’s really that simple. She never will, as the IdPol crowd doesn’t care about issues.

      But they will desert you if you look bad. Attacking Joe Biden (and thank her for that, seriously) is OK, but taking concrete positions of your own (cough, Gabbard, cough) is way too risky.

      She may have “private” positions, but she’s stepped beyond Hillary by having no public positions at all. “Hey I’m (actually 1/2 Jamaican but let’s pretend) black” schtick is her horse and she’s gonna ride it.

      1. Oh

        She’s a counterfeit Black just like a certain Prez whose father was Kenyan and mother white, who married a black women (instead of an Asian who was in love with him) to dress up his credentials. This goes to show how naive the IDPol electorate is.

    3. Chris Cosmos

      Because she is “black” and a woman for starters. Also, Harris is ambitious, charming on the surface, clever and will do “anything” to serve the oligarchs. I think she’s a good candidate for the Democrats and could stand up to Trump and give as good as she gets.

    4. Otis B Driftwood

      And if that weren’t enough, yesterday’s NYT Magazine had a cover story on Joe Biden. ‘Guess the establishment is hedging their bets. Basically a friendly personal background story – featuring the genuine tragedy of Beau Biden’s death in 2015 – and very light on Biden’s shortcomings as a candidate.

      And yes, as if we didn’t already know, we learn here that the Biden candidacy is all about restoring the pre-Trump status quo. Avoiding bold policy initiatives because that’s “not what the American people want or need”, they are focused on selling character and trust solely, as if this were a favorite old brand of dish soap.

      But we already knew that about Biden.

      1. sleepy

        If Biden gets the nomination and is elected, liberal dems will have reached an endgame with the voting public. He will absolutely fail at addressing any genuine issues, making it likely that the repub who wins the presidency in 2024 will be a real fascist, not the clown we now have.

      2. jrs

        I think holding the debates at what will be 5 PST is Dems limiting debate as is so much else. I mean on the west coast we are lucky to get off work then, and the debates are NOT on the radio, so no listening to them on your commute. Yea you can watch them later or read transcripts.

        After that 2nd debate I lost most interest in them anyway, what a complete @#$#show. And making them super inconvenient as well is just ugh.. So seems from here on the left coast the DNC is up to their usual tricks from 2016 in limiting debate.

      3. John k

        I trust biden will do everything he can to screw the working class and reward fire, just as he has dependently done throughout his political career.

    5. Lobsterman

      She’s personally competent and very charismatic.

      Agreed that she’s not ready for prime time.

      1. Yves Smith

        See the later comment by Cal2 re her record. I don’t know what you mean by “personally competent”. You seem to be suffering from halo effect, where people who have some superficial positive attributes (here, good looks and being a good public speaker) have observers rate them highly on other qualities. In general, halo effect leads people to see others as all good or all bad. It’s also the cognitive bias that leads pretty people to be scored as smarter than ordinary or ugly looking individuals.

        1. Foy

          And to give an example of the opposite in the ‘good looks halo effect’ column as demonstrated in the links today, British MP Rory Stewart with apparently the “the look of a diseased ravaged teddy bear” who is one of the smartest, most considered people (and has had one of the most interesting lives) I’ve had the pleasure to listen to on almost any topic… Lambert has linked before to his talk on hedgehogs to the UK parliament, has to be seen to be believed…

      2. WheresOurTeddy

        California voter here.

        We have a lot of words for Kamala. Competent is not one of them. +1 to what Yves said.

    6. Cal2

      Like a frog trying to put all four feet onto different lily pads, and at the same time prepare to jump to four others, she a dissembling ideological mess. Forget what she says, just look at her track record.

      Kamala was incompetent as S.F.’s D.A. and crime in the city shot up under her ‘leadership’. She failed to notice that ex S.F. School Board president, state senator Leland Yee, one of her political allies, was an arms trafficker trying to sell assault weapons to terrorists.

      Like Keith Jackson, another former S.F. school board President, who was in a murder-for-hire scheme.

      Then as state attorney general, a race she won by the skin of her teeth, she turned a blind eye to Mnuchin’s bank foreclosures, the Herbalife stock fraud and Catholic priest molestation scandals. That office was another launching pad to her next float, the U.S. Senate, another unfinished job.

      “The Catholic news site, CruxNow, reports that several survivors say that Harris ignored their requests for help for years despite complaints that Catholic priests who had committed acts of sexual assault and sexual abuse were still active in parishes in California. One victim even says he pursued Harris’ attention for more than five years, writing her again and again asking her to take an active role in policing the Catholic sex abuse crisis in California.”

      Her entire presidential campaign has originated in the 210+ fawning articles, this year, in the newspaper where her political launching pad, ex-Speaker of the State Assembly, Willie Brown, is a columnist. e.g. “20 things you may not know about Kamala Harris.” “French fries! The way she ties her shoes! First black woman…”

      Good poll numbers? She picked the right parents and is the repository of skindeep hope for the Hollywood Billionaire Class.

      Bernie or Trump, it’s up to the Democrats.

      1. Cal2

        That article on Leland Yee is now 404. Maybe someone at the Washington Post likes Kamala?

        Here’s an alternative that is actually more informative. The L.A. Times is a great paper.
        “One of the biggest corruption scandals in San Francisco history comes to a head Wednesday when former state Sen. Leland Yee is set to be sentenced.
        Here are some key questions and answers in the case from The Times’ archives:
        At one time, Yee was an up-and-coming elected official. He served on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors, in the state Assembly and at the time of his indictment was in the state Senate.
        Yee admitted in a plea deal that he was part of a racketeering conspiracy that involved exchanging official acts for money, conspiring to traffic in weapons and money laundering. Specifically, Lee promised an undercover FBI agent favors in return for campaign contributions.”

        John, I like “The Pitchfork Party”, hold three fingers up in a modified V for Victory symbol.

    7. John Wright

      Then there is her “black homeownership” plan

      “Under Harris’ proposal, homebuyers who rent or live in historically redlined communities can apply for a federal grant of up to $25,000 to assist with down payments or closing costs. Harris’ campaign estimates that this will help up to 4 million families.”

      A great idea, encourage people in areas that may have access to few well-paying jobs to hop on the “new mortgage” treadmill.

      It could be a better use of funds to use the 25K to assist with moving expenses and initial rent in an affordable housing area that has a demand for new workers.

      But, do such areas exist?

      This Kamala Harris’ plan seems to be constructed to favor mortgage originators and the current owners of property in red-lined areas.

      It is possible we are seeing simple Harris political opportunism.

      Harris may well see the flaws in her proposals but has floated them as low cost “vote getters” that will never see the legislative light of day.

      Coherence is not required.


    Demo dissray: Time for a New Party

    “The whole modern world has divided itself into Conservatives and Progressives. The business of Progressives is to go on making mistakes. The business of Conservatives is to prevent mistakes from being corrected.” G.K. Chesterton (Brit)

    “So, when millions of Americans turned to La Resistance among the Democratic leadership to save the “republic” from a racist, rule-of-law-allergic authoritarian who will not protect the constitution he swore to uphold, Nancy Pelosi, like Mueller, flinched. ”

    Time for a new party.

    1. Gregorio

      Cruise ships are a scourge. One prime example is how they have turned small towns in Southeast Alaska, like Sitka and Ketchikan into trinket malls where many of the main street businesses are boarded up for 9 months of the year.

  9. a different chris

    Lordy. This oh-so-white guy:

    Unfortunately, this is the reality as the red-hot Trump stock market has people spending on vacations and new cars instead of a fresh pack of underwear or pair of jeans

    Any basis for that? I’m guessing not. Here is the reality: 100% of the populace needs clothes. Not anywhere near that amount can afford “vacations and new cars”. In fact, I would bet that the “vacations and new cars” people also buy new Levi’s and fresh underware, whether they need them or not.

    It’s amazing how completely invisible the bottom 80% is to people like Mr. Sozzi. They stop buying stuff and somehow it must be that the people he “knows” have simply shifted consumption patterns. Again, lordy.

    1. Cal2

      I could easily buy new clothes. Except for underwear and shoes, why would I do that?
      Thrift shops are full of high quality and better made items for a 90%+ discount.
      Especially after Marie Kondo’s “clear out your closet” videos.

      Depending on where one lives, one can pick up a high quality suit, a coat, pants, ties, shirts, for say, $50 bucks or far less, that would cost one $1,000+ at Nordstrom’s or Brooks Brothers.

      Yes, there are suckers paying hundreds for techbro T-shirts, but they are still wearing t-shirts.

      As for Levi’s, they used to be made in my hometown and were quality. Now they are Chinese crap. The ad campaigns alienate more buyers than they attract. Their potential buyers don’t want to be associated with the weirdos and a different demographic that they use as models. The Gap is absolutely the worst, overt political messaging in their ads, reflecting the personal philosophy of the billionaire owners, junk quality and high prices. Gee, sales aren’t doing so well? Cry me a river.

      Carhardt and other work clothing makers have been attracting young guys and some gals as buyers because their products last and are reasonably priced.

  10. The Rev Kev

    “Iran calls European fleet in the Gulf ‘hostile’ and ‘provocative'”: ‘UK said it is planning a European-led naval force to escort tankers through the world’s busiest oil shipping lane.’

    Yeah, about that. There is a reason that the British are calling for a European-led naval force to go into the Gulf. It is because they no longer have the ships to do it themselves anymore. That is why they want the Europeans to pick up their slack for them. Sad but true. If you go to you will see that as far as major surface ship are concerned, they have a total of only 6 Destroyers and 13 Frigates. Talk about “The Few”.
    They have stripped down the Royal Navy in order to pay for those two huge Queen Elizabeth-class aircraft carrier with – and their F-35s – so that they can still project power along with the US but which are not ready yet. The HMS Queen Elizabeth, though built, is not yet operational and the second – HMS Prince of Wales – is still under construction. Both carriers will need dedicated ships to act as a screen to protect them against missiles, ships, submarines and aircraft which will take a chunk of those available Destroyers and Frigates. Unless they can sucker in other countries like the US, Europe, Australia, etc to fill out the require ships with, their cupboard is going to be pretty bare for conducting ops in places like the Gulf.

    1. Anonymous2

      Shame the UK has chosen to pick a quarrel with the rest of Europe then is it not? I believe Uncle Sam has told the UK it is on its own in the Gulf. Is this accident given that it seems to have been the US which encouraged the UK to pick a quarrel also with Iran or is it the US just making it clear to the UK how weak and dependent it now is?

      PS I have heard rumours that the UK carriers will be part crewed by US navy/marine personnel. Any one else heard this?

      1. Redlife2017

        If the crews are part US is true: hahahahahahahahahahahahaha! We really ARE the 51st state. I thought I escaped that chlorinated chicken…we’re already hosed.

      2. The Rev Kev

        I think that what you mean is called “interoperability”. What that means is that British planes will be able to land on French aircraft carriers and use them to launch missions from while US Marine Corps aircraft will be able to land on British carriers and use them to conduct missions from. I have only come across a few references to this idea and I believe that a few experiments have been made along these lines.

  11. human

    “While tourism creates jobs and wealth …”

    Jobs, yes, but not wealth where wealth is defined as life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. I am so sickened by the constant use of the attainment of neo-liberal values as wealth.

    1. Foy

      Agreed…. and it’s also another good example of the irresistible force of our ‘need’ for exponential economic growth hitting the immovable object of a very finite world – in this example popular (and now crowded and ever more unpleasant) but finite tourist destinations. More and more finite limits are raising their heads it seems to me.

      1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        Put a temporary (like, for example, say, museums under restoration) ban on touring those destinations?

        I have always wondered if packages like “cruising to see glaciers in Alaska before they disappeaer’ are audience participation shows.

  12. Alex morfesis

    Ah yes…germans don’t want to have fingers pointed to them for gas chambers and blame the klan for their laws and the ottomans for how to kill people…except there is this little detail known as the three pashas which everyone conveniently overlooks….

    who were under the control of who…as mister panos would say…who remembers…we remember…

    The 3 pashas were so under control by Germany that its navy was under direct German control and a German ordered tbe first Naval attack of ww1 which was apparently done by a Turkish naval vessel…

    But that reality would not help absolve Germany…but instead would show perhaps the Armenian public needs to turn and ask Germany some question…elmer season…

    1. David Many

      Would you mind… writing…. your posts….. in standard English….. thanks….And…

      Are… you…. really suggesting that Germany…. somehow…. is responsible for… the Armenian Genocide…?

      1. Eclair

        A friendly reminder, David Many, that readers and commenters at NC possess varying levels of skill at writing (although the majority of comments are of an incredibly high standard.) Some of it may be due to lack of instruction or practice; other readers may have inherent conditions such as dyslexia.

        You might want simply to ask for clarification, stating that you are having difficulty understanding the comment and ask for a rephrasing. Or, ask, “Are you saying,” and then rephrase the comment in what you consider standard English. Speaking for myself only, I can always use help and advice on my writing style.

        1. Jonathan Holland Becnel

          And some like to birth new grammar on the fly…

          I like it all!

          Lets. get. messy. up. in. dis. beeeeotchhhh.

      2. Alex morfesis

        Yes….germans helped create the 3 pashas and ran the Ottoman military at the times in question so yes the german his story folks would love for the world to ignore who was at the helm….

        and there is always…..

        More but since moi tends to disseminate full descriptives and the good folks
        in central casting (aka monitoring) really are not interested in novellas….thus…

        the there is more designation you so graciously amused yourself with, but so is life. The truth is hardly ever what it appears to be; we return you back to your regularly scheduled programming

      3. Anonymous

        A hundred years from now, they are going to write about how peace loving troops and youth from UK and US descended upon the Middle East to protect minority (fill blank here ), instead of O.I.L.

        Just wondering, if there were white helmets in the Ottoman Empire in 1915, to support Armenians?

        Is this story rehashed just because we need to remember how bad the Ottomans were (or Erdogan is), going against the wishes of the great powers?

    1. Jerri-Lynn Scofield Post author

      Yes, it’s a good thread – I would have included it in Links if I’d seen it. I’ll forward the thread to Lambert and perhaps he’ll use it in today’s Water Cooler.

    2. John Zelnicker

      Jerri-Lynn and

      @Stephen V.
      July 29, 2019 at 9:42 am

      Perhaps one of you could also post the link here.


    3. John k

      This is first thing to boost my view of warren. Maybe she’s good enough to be Bernie’s veep, though better placed ar treasury.

      1. Jeremy Grimm

        I hope Bernie can find some deserving younger candidate for his Vice President. It’s time to prepare for passing his baton.

  13. The Rev Kev

    “Pontifications: MAX market share holding steady, so far”

    Yeah, and I am sure that both the Lion Air and Ethiopian Airlines 737 MAXs were also “holding steady” on take-off as well.

    1. a different chris

      Also – isn’t Boeing heavily discounting? So “market share” as X% of planes is not the same thing as market share as X% of dollar sales.

  14. prx

    Everybody Hates the Key Card. Will Your Phone Replace It? NYT

    Betteridge’s Law Applies.

    I question the premise. I travel frequently for work and don’t mind keycards. My office has the option of a physical keycard or a phone-based unlocking app. I am one of the few in the techy office to use a physical card; I hate the nuisance of downloading more apps, my phone can die, and the phone-based system frequently goes down.

  15. Carolinian

    Re Bauhaus

    the Bundestag unabashedly declared that “the Bauhaus design-concept conquered the whole world during the twentieth century.” Not V-2 rockets or Tiger tanks, but designers — including women as the parliament stresses — accomplished a world conquest of a different sort.

    Boy that’s the truth and places the movement in some interesting company. For some of us Tom Wolfe wrote the definitive book on this craze and while we Boomers may have escaped the V-2s and Panzers we were bombarded with bland boxy buildings using Bauhaus as their excuse or inspiration. Even Frank Lloyd Wright took up the trend and showed at Fallingwater what Bauhaus would be like with added talent in the same way Banksy made graffiti respectable by rising above mere “tagging.”

    1. JBird4049

      Bauhaus has its problems certainly. It was a reaction to the very showy styles of the previous hundred years as well as the need to produce functional yet attractive replacements for the all the buildings, especially housing, that was destroyed in the First World War; I do not particularly like Bauhaus, or even the contemporaneous Art Deco, but good grief, compared to Brutalism, with its love of stark white concrete, they are art.

      But then, pouring concrete is cheaper than actually individually thoughtfully designing with style even something as stripped down as a Bauhaus building which uses something other than stark white poured concrete; I think it also does a good job of oppressing people rather than opening them up to the world. Cheaper to build and better at suppressing the population is Brutalism.

      1. The Rev Kev

        Maybe with Bauhaus, they took the “functional yet attractive”, removed the attractive bit and that left you what we call Brutalism.

    1. Otis B Driftwood

      Yes, Taibbi accurately likens the Democrats 24-candidate circus to the GOP 2016 clown car show, with the distinguishing feature that there is no Trump likely to emerge in this cycle’s version. Marianne Williamson is his best guess, though. ;)

      One the bright side, Taibbi and everyone else got everything that really mattered wrong on the last go-round. No reason to believe they will do any better now. On this Taibbi is right, though: the Democrats are bound and determined to screw things up even worse this time.

      1. jrs

        Actually the DNC rules are going to absolutely prevent a Marianne Williamson (or any dark horse candidate) from emerging. They are strict and the funding deadlines too soon after second debates (end of July).

        There is of course one thorn in their side they can’t do as much about without being completely obvious ..

  16. The Rev Kev

    “Putin opponent Navalny may have been exposed to ‘toxic agent’: doctor”

    Looks like everything old is new again – I guess. Is this going to be like the time that that Ukrainian leader – Viktor Yushchenko – claimed that he was poisoned by Dioxin back in 2004 and that he had a pockmarked face as a result? And that this helped him become President during the Orange Revolution? I don’t think that this tactic is going to help Navalny as he only ever gets single-digit voting support during elections.

  17. Katniss Everdeen

    Lest we forget Puerto Rico:

    “As Puerto Rico Erupts in Protests and Governor Resigns, “La Junta” Eyes More Power”

    Another board member, Philadelphia-based lawyer David Skeel Jr., is one of the chief architects of emergency control regimes like the one now in place in Puerto Rico, as Simon Davis-Cohen pointed out in The Nation. These arrangements — which typically involve empowering appointed overseers who commandeer municipal finances, wresting power away from institutions like city councils — have been tested on the mostly nonwhite residents of Michigan and Atlantic City, New Jersey, resulting in fights over public services, pensions, and union contracts that outside appointees deem lavish expenses.
    And while la junta and its supporters have consistently painted Puerto Rican governments past and present as financially irresponsible — showering money onto outside consultants and spending beyond their means — the board itself is no paragon of fiscal restraint. One lawyer overseeing Title III bankruptcy negotiations invoiced the board $1.3 million in a single year. As of January, McKinsey and Co. had billed the board $72 million for its role in the restructuring process, and more than $1 billion is earmarked to be funneled to lawyers, bankers, and consultants in the coming years. Should the board get more authority — for instance, in overseeing the already botched disbursement of federal recovery dollars — that figure may well balloon, with Puerto Rican taxpayers footing the bill.

    1. JBird4049

      My word, the propagandists are at it again.

      Seeing some whinging on how financially irresponsible as that is in the service of American businesses is a trip. Ever since Puerto Rico was taken from the Spanish during the Spanish-American War, every single effort by the inhabitants to improve the economy and have good governance has been stopped often by the deliberate request of American businesses to Congress and the President. Assassinations, death squads, theft, rigged contracts, and fraudulent loans. Hey, it worked in the American South too.

      Whenever Puerto Ricans, Nicaraguans, Salvadorans, Hondurans, Cubans, Haitians, even the Argentinians, Chileans, Iranians, and so many others get honest government, the United States government destroys often very violently the new government.

  18. prodigalson

    On the Graham rules piece it seems like the candidate is really just opportunistically trying to make himself a culture warrior martyr and generate a cheap campaign issue than anything else. I thought it was the “pence rule” and it was basically go places with your wife. Doing a total ban on ever being alone with anyone of the opposite gender seems…crazy. Perhaps if he was so concerned about the optics of alone time with a female journalist he could have had some staff members chaperone at all times? Of course that easy solution would negate creating a dumb campaign issue.

    I’m putting this one squarely in the “ practicing your righteousness conspicuously in front of others” category.

    1. Carey

      Thank you for that link. Excerpts:

      “If it waddles like a duck, quacks like a duck, paddles like a duck, then probably it’s a duck. Or a good imitation of one. When self-described progressives like Ayanna Pressley and Ro Khanna walk and talk like Netanyahu, it’s fair to ask what kind of politicians they really are..” …

      “..Pressley is no less incoherent, proclaiming that “We can call out and question the tactics of a movement but we should never question or marginalize the lived experiences and voices of those who call out for civil rights & liberties, including the Palestinian people.” But that is precisely what the full text of the resolution does, suggesting that all this self-defensive quackery on the part of “Progressives except on Palestine” is designed to mask what they have really signed on to, an AIPAC-lite screed that perpetrates not only all the self-serving smears that Israel’s supporters have for fifteen years disseminated in order to discredit BDS, but also all the manifest contradictions that any true progressive would find both patently evident and shameful to endorse..”

      Gotta love those word-salads from Khanna (still Sanders’s campaign chief, no?) and

      unsurprised controlled “opposition”

      1. Carolinian

        Arguably the whole purpose of the non-binding resolution was as a kind of “whose side are you on” from AIPAC. They want to keep support for Israel as a third rail (maybe replacing the old third rail). But the above linked article has a glass half full conclusion that the very need for such a resolution suggests that things are changing.

    2. Phenix

      That was hard to read. He could have just pasted the non binding resolution and highlighted the smears against the Palestinian activist. But they are not smears. They are direct quotes. BDS should just state that Israel gas a right to exist. In the end that resolution is meaningless. Omar’s bill…BILL….is the real fight.

      He also forgot Tulsi.

      1. Carolinian

        The problem with the “right to exist” requirement is that Israel refuses to specify it’s borders so it’s hard to know what that existence actually means. Obviously a “right to exist” clear to the Jordan river would make BDS moot.

        But at Oslo long ago Arafat affirmed that it was no longer a Palestinian goal to eliminate Israel. It could be the Israelis just don’t want to take yes for an answer. The more germane question is do Palestinians have a right to exist.

        But truly the most relevant question is why any of this is the business of the US Congress.

    3. Jeremy Grimm

      I have to complain about your use of ‘BDS’. I used to work with government documents crammed to the gills with acronyms. UGH! Please! Please! Please! How about Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (against Israel) [BDS].

  19. Pat

    Am I the only one hoping for the miracle of a mainstream media article along the lines of
    “Forget the dead son, let’s talk about Hunter. He is a better illustration of Joe Biden’s values.”

    I know, when pigs fly…

  20. Synoia

    Based on my reading, it seems the tipping point for Climate Change is much, much closer than estimated.

    Which is the result of straight line estimations of a chaotic system.

    Time to move uphill. Include your sanitation plant elevation in your move.

    1. ambrit

      I suspect that we have already passed the ‘tipping point’ for a 2 degrees C world temperature rise.
      Research into and planning for coping with the changes is now the primary task.

    2. jrs

      moving to the hills is the ultimate expression of “‘I’ve got mine”, though isn’t it?

      I mean we still need to think politically, sure in lessening climate change to any degree that is physically possible or even might work (plant a trillion trees?), but also planning to mitigate the damage of baked in climate change collectively. Or we can all retreat into I’ve got mine-ism I guess and still lose in the end.

      1. Oregoncharles

        By itself, yes. OTOH, it’s what everybody will have to do as the sea rises. Living below sea level is dicey and imposes heavy social costs, as New Orleans demonstrated. Evacuate now, if you can, and avoid being part of the crisis. It’s a bit like having a stock of food staples: one less family for the emergency services to feed, and the capability to help neighbors.

        1. Jonathan Holland Becnel

          New Orleanian here.

          Im through running. Gonna need people like me to keep everyone calm and have a coherent plan. Everyone Fights. No One Quits.

          1. ambrit

            I remember seeing engravings of New Orleans way back before the levees. Most houses were up on piers because the streets would flood during the spring thaws. Adapting to what is there is the human animal’s traditional response to Nature. Like neolithic villages on stilts around the edge of Lake Geneva for protection, sanitation, aesthetics, etc. Archaeologists recently uncovered the remains of ancient Bronze Age dwellings in England sited just so.

      2. Anon

        There will be no “I’ve got mine” as climate change accelerates. Not only will there be sanitation issues, but the general economy will be collapsing. Social disorder will affect everyone in some way.

        We’re getting close to point where deniers/ non-movers have to be tossed overboard to save the sane. There are no more deck chairs to re-arrange.

        1. Monty

          Whilst I share your pessimism, why do you think that the financial markets don’t seem to be reflecting this.

          1. Grant

            Markets are missing almost all environmental information, and there is no realistic way to price most of it. Even if we could, everything would explode in price. If capitalists were serious and up to the task, space to spit carbon into the atmosphere would have long ago been much more expensive and valuable than gold or most anything that can be priced by markets. Trees and forests that sequester carbon would have a huge market value and because the ecosystem services were gifts of nature, it would make sense for municipalities to take over land and to do large reforestation campaigns, which would be funded by the national government (hello MMT), or some other means of socialization. But markets cannot do those things, and the radical changes we need are opposed outright by those in power. Markets struggle to price things that don’t already have market values, and the things we do not price are increasingly important, relative to the things we do. It seems that a stock market would maybe be a better guide if all those in the market were trained atmospheric scientists, biologists, and ecologists.

          2. False Solace

            1) Financial markets are irrational. Why would we expect them to reflect reality?

            2) The actions of the wealthy, by ripping as much wealth from society as they can as quickly as possible with no regard for consequences, show that many are “prepping” the only way they know how. There are also explicit preppers among them – Survival of the Richest

          3. Briny

            Serious short-term thinking. There are more than enough other examples around Mr. Market’s delusions.

            1. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

              It is said that the stock market anticipates a recession by six months…or something like that.

              A collapse is much more serious than a recssion, economically, sociallly, etc.

              Whatever mechanism that contributes to that attribution should, in theory or we assume, sound off earlier.

              For example, let’s say it’s 8 months. If that is the case, then, we can say AOC’s 10 years (till the end or the event horizon) will not be reflected in the stock market for another 9 years and 4 months.

              This is one explanation.

              On the other hand, if it can warn 20 years prior, and if we have not detected that signal so far, it would prove AOC wrong. But that (superior predictor capable of predicting 20 years ahead) is a largely unlikely assumption.

      3. ambrit

        “I’ve got mine ism” can become tribal easily.
        Mitigating the damage of climate change might just require the dreaded Jackpot becoming reality.

      4. Jeremy Grimm

        Moving to the hills does not imply becoming politically inactive. Remaining politically active working to lessen climate change from the porch of your beach house is just plain short-sighted.

        As for your trillion trees — “Can planting trees save our climate?” . At least planting trees [a trillion — dream on] isn’t likely to do too much harm. And before worry about planting trees perhaps we could do something about a Department of the Interior that regards forests as resources to be harvested.

  21. Liberal Mole

    Re: Fast Furniture

    Being a thrifty sort, I’ve bought a lot of furniture off Craigslist and garage sales. Contrary to expectations, good IKEA furniture resells well and quickly. It does pay to buy their higher priced lines, which last well and can be moved.

    1. marieann

      I have an Ikea desk for my sewing room, it is nice but not up to the standards of my other furniture bought in the late 1970’s. I had a maple table and chairs refinished a couple of year ago. It cost $500, so now I’m good for another 30 years.

      I did buy a small bookcase from the thrift store, solid wood in really good shape.

      1. polecat

        We have an Ikea kitchen hutch that works well for our needs, and is of exellent construction. The bedroom chest of drawers however, while functional – with smooth drawer glides and nice laquer finish – has a defect : the plastic leading edges on the top and around the drawer fronts has all delaminated from the particle-board core ! I’m still trying to figure out a remedy for that design flaw …

        1. marieann

          Yes I agree about the smooth drawer glides. On the front of the desk where I sit the sewing machine sits the finish is scratched from the straight pins and needles that I use in sewing.

          The old sewing table that this one replaced was bought in 1973….not a scratch on it. I replaced it because it was just too small…….but I still keep it around.

        2. Liberal Mole

          When that happened to me I glued it back down and used good masking tape to keep it in place while it dried. When dry I took off the tape.

    2. Jeremy Grimm

      I bought a lot of ‘fast furniture’ because it was relatively inexpensive, lasts well-enough, and most important because it can be disassembled for moving. I’ve had to make many moves over the years and ‘fast furniture’ is the only way to go. If I can’t resell it or find a place for it in the trailer, I can set it out with its assembly hardware in an old many-times re-used plastic baggie. Very fast, someone will come and toss the furniture and baggie of assembly hardware into their trunk or back seat area and quickly re-use it.

    3. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

      Fast vs. slow.

      What about fast relationship?

      It would appear having many fast relationships, versus one long slow one, is more energy and resource consuming – you have to go out on dates, spending to impress, perhaps travelling a bit (by rail, car or otherwise) around town, local, or far away destinations, buy non-local drinks (say Vodka from Russia, etc), going to midnight dance parties (consuming energy), smoking something (carbon emission) etc…

  22. Oregoncharles

    “Mississippi reporters confront the ‘Billy Graham Rule’” –
    The American Taliban is alive and well. Not the conclusion: that this controversy will not hurt Foster’s campaign. (Maybe he suspected she would not be a friendly reporter.) That’s a real, serious culture clash. It’s the reason I’m not worried about Muslim fundamentalism, but I sure am worried about the Christian version (the original).

    A point that strikes me about this: it shows no faith in men’s self-restraint. Apparently Mrs. Foster doesn’t trust her husband around other women, nor did (even) Mrs. Billy Graham. What does that say about those men – or their marriages?

    1. Oregoncharles

      “Not the conclusion” should be “NotE the conclusion”. Sheesh. I do not like this keyboard. Too easy to drop letters.

    2. Procopius

      Some years ago I saw an opinion about the Islamic requirement for the hijab and the burqa. Whether sharia requires them or not is controversial among muslims, at least for the burqa. The hijab seems to be more clearly justified by hadith. Anyway, the jihadist argument for them (at least as expressed in the essay) is that if these are not imposed on women, then the sight of women’s hair or skin drives men to rape. The woman author pointed out that in The West even teen-age boys are expected to have more self-control than that. Maybe she was wrong.

  23. ewmayer

    Looks like I’m gonna be forceed to continue wearing my Ye Olde Skeptickal Scientist hat beyond the weekend:

    o “Safari tourist snaps could produce useful conservation data | Ars Technica” — Just what we need, more selfie-taking Instragram twits trampling wild and scenic parts of the globe, now “in the name of science”. How about we let actual scientists and park conservation/anti-poaching personnel do the data gathering? Love the underwhelming subhead, though: “Population estimates using photos were comparable to more traditional methods.” Ergo, encouraging hordes of Instagrammers to go wildlife-molesting is warranted, because it allows us to obtain the same kinds of data we already know how to get without said hordes. Sorry, Lambert, I know you’re a big fan of citizen science, as am I, but I draw the line at using it to boost tourism, when said citizen scientists could be doing at-least-equally-valaubale data gathering closer to home, without burning thousands of pounds of jet fuel each and risking becoming a “[Insert name of dangerous animal species] kills scientific tourist in [insert name of exotic locale]” headline.

    o “HOW SCIENTISTS BUILT A ‘LIVING DRUG’ TO BEAT CANCER | Wired” — I’ve decided to start treating any headline in which ‘cancer’ is portrayed as a single entity rather than as myriads of distinct diseases as clickbait. A real timesaver, that.

    1. Plenue

      “I’ve decided to start treating any headline in which ‘cancer’ is portrayed as a single entity rather than as myriads of distinct diseases as clickbait. A real timesaver, that.”

      This article is worth your time. Tl;dr, they extract T cells, and genetically modify their receptors to detect an antigen present on the patients tumors. Then they reinject them.

      So yes, precisely, cancer is a category rather then single disease. Which is why here they’re custom tuning a weapon specifically for each patient’s unique tumor.

      1. ewmayer

        You’re right, that actually is very interesting. But, this line (and the ensuing description of the massive difficulties involved) leapt out at me:

        CAR-T is often called the “most complex drug ever created”…

        OK, but initially complex technical processes in all kinds of fields have been known to get radically simpler over time – the miracle of automation, right? Think of DNA sequencing, for example. My younger self would have been filled with optimism at that thought. My older self, alas, knows that any time such experimental procedures *do* show enough promise of being convertible into an effective wider-scale therapy, they are quickly hijacked by Big Pharma. If you think today’s “new innovative” cancer drugs are astronomically priced, imagine what Big Pharma would do with Custom Patient-Specific Chimeric Antigen Receptor T cell Cancer Immunotherapy™. But that objection applies to the US patients-as-profit-centers medical care paradigm, not the article. So thanks for urging me to reconsider my initial take.

  24. Oregoncharles

    From the Caitlin Johnstone piece: “Secondly, I hope that progressives are beginning to see that you can’t collaborate with the establishment to defeat the establishment.”

    Yes, and applies in spades to US politics.

  25. Ford Prefect

    I am still baffled by how everybody took Trump’s bait on bashing Baltimore as rat-infested, particularly since Trump comes from NY that has its own massive rat problem:

    At least the tweet was useful in bringing up Mr. Kushner’s exemplary real estate empire again:

    “Of Mice and Men” might become the title of a memoir about this Administraiton.

    1. simcha

      My theory is he *wants* democrats calling him a racist. He’s not trying to turn out his base as much as shrink the Democratic coalition and depress turnout. Only a small segment of democrats are motivated by woke outrage – activist and affluent liberals. The rest want “kitchen table issues”. Every time he gets democrats calling him a racist, he’s pointing out they care more about their own virtue signaling than providing for their constituents.

      This Baltimore episode reminds me very much of when Clinton claimed “this country’s already great” and the economy is wonderful. Baltimore is demonstrably challenged as you can see in video, or in data. Democrats come off as phony / callous when they claim the opposite is true. They should have admitted it was troubled, highlighted some local “heroes” working to make it better, and say they want to work with Trump to fix it…instead they fell for his bait. Trumps not baiting the racists, he’s baiting the woke…

    2. Yves Smith

      Yes, New York even has celebrity rats, as in the Pizza Rat.

      You see them regularly in the subway. I’ve seen them in restaurants. But most often near garbage bags.

  26. George Phillies

    Phones replace key cards…?

    Can I use one of my push button phones, or do I have to bring the one with the rotary dial?

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