Links 8/30/2020

How cats and dogs see the world Popular Science

Heroin’s Hidden Ingredient Is a Chemical Made by U.S. Companies BloombergU

More Space, Please: Home Sales Booming Despite Pandemic, Recession NPR

Pinterest cancels huge SF office lease in unbuilt project, citing work-from-home shift San Francisco Chronicle

California’s secret fire: Navy dodges questions about 80,000-acre blaze Daily Press

#COVID19

A 29-Year-Old’s Strange, Unforgettable Trip Into a Covid Coma and Back Washingtonian. Must read.

Once a COVID-19 epicenter, Arizona emerges from lockdown The Hill

COVID-19 cases in North Dakota tied to Sturgis Motorcycle Rally Inforum

China’s Vaccine Front-Runner Aims to Beat Covid the Old-Fashioned Way Bloomberg

Convalescent Plasma: The Science and the Politics In the Pipeline, Science

China?

China’s rise: why US advocacy for confrontation leaves Asia cold South China Morning Post. The Middle Kingdom:

Southeast Asia is Ground Zero in the New U.S.-China Conflict—and Beijing Is Winning Foreign Policy

China promises its Mekong neighbours priority access to a coronavirus vaccine developed in China South China Morning Post

Indonesia sees record new coronavirus cases, with clusters at factories a growing concern Straits Times

The Last Wrongs: A Woman’s Burial in Medan’s Mass Graves New Naratif

Bhutan lifts tobacco ban due to coronavirus Agence France Presse

Japanese convenience store chain begins testing remote controlled robot staff in Tokyo Sora News 24 (dk).

Mauritius

Thousands protest in Mauritius over dead dolphins, demand resignations Reuters. AFAIK, we still don’t know why the MV Wakashio changed course in the middle of the Indian Ocean to head directly for Mauritius, and who authorized the change.

EU/UK

German politicians condemn far-right attempt to storm parliament building Deutsche Welle

UK government says payouts for Iraq abuse claims ‘too many to count’ Middle East Eye

Brexit

Barnier ‘flabbergasted’ at UK attempt to reopen Brexit specialty food debate Guardian

Pessimism mounts in Brussels over Brexit talks ‘disaster’ Politico

Brexit ho: Tony Abbott’s trade deal role Independent Australia. Ah, Tony Abbott.

New Cold War

Russia’s response to Belarus crisis: possible lessons from Abkhazia Riddle

What Was Really Behind Navalny’s Poisoning? The National Interest

Russia satellite weapon test reignites space arms race fears FT

Trump Transition

Only five states making use of Trump’s expanded unemployment benefits: reports The Hill. Arizona, Louisiana, Missouri, Montana and Texas.

The Census Scales Back A Critical Step: Checking Its Own Work NPR

Dems outraged as Trump administration scales back election security briefings Politico

2020

This Is How Biden Loses George Packer, The Atlantic (Re Silc).

How the Joe Biden campaign is investing in outreach to Black men ABC. “The campaign’s strategy includes a series of conversations called Shop Talk, meant to simulate the raw conversations had in Black barber shops.” Let me know how that works out.

Republicans Run Toward Their Base. Democrats Run Away From Theirs. Jacobin. No. “He’s just not that into you”:

Then again:

Obama had principles; just bad ones. BIden’s very lack of fixed ideas can sometimes yield advantage.

What if Facebook Is the Real ‘Silent Majority’? NYT

Trump, Populism, And The Suburbs The American Conservative

Election commission orders top voting machine vendor to correct misleading claims Politico. Let’s not kid ourselves. That electronic voting machines are hackable is their manufacturers’ unique selling proposition.

Outside group pulls ad about Alex Morse after criticism it was homophobic The Hill. “Outside group” my sweet Aunt Fanny. Mass Democrats really pulling out all the slime-covered stops to protect an incumbent:

“Never intended to air,” lol. Why was the ad made at all? And who’s running the Neal campaign? Karl Rover?

Top US general tells Congress the military won’t play a role in the 2020 election CNN (Furzy Mouse). A propos:

A sudden feeling of relief stole over the major. ‘Captain, you know what this is now?”

“I’m sure you’ll tell me, sir.”

“I will, Tom, I will. This is political, Tom. We’re soldiers. Political goes higher up.”

“You’re right, sir. Well done, sir!”

“Dig out a lieutenant who has been a bit slack lately and send him up to tell their lordships,” said the major.

“Isn’t that a bit cruel, sir?”

“Of course it is. This is politics now.”      –Terry Pratchett, Night Watch

Republican National Convention

Trump Pulls Closer to Biden After RNC Morning Consult

Roaming Charges: Great Balls of Ire at the RNC Counterpunch (Heresy101).

Failed State

Head of police union demands Mayor de Blasio resign by ‘sundown’ NY Post

Protests and Riots

One Dead After Shooting During Pro-Trump Rally in Portland Portland Mercury

L.A. bans pepper spray, baseball bats, weapons and other items at protests LA Times

Armed civilians at US protests: ‘A threshold has been crossed’ FT

The Thin Blue Line Between Violent, Pro-Trump Militias And Police The Intercept

Kenosha Notes from Disgraceland (Re Silc). Re Silc: “So who is buying up all the ammo? Or is it just my small sector in sw Vermont????” No.

One Author’s Argument ‘In Defense Of Looting’ NPR

What’s Driving Political Violence in America? Greater Good Magazine. From 2018, still germane.

Black Lives Matter: US teen billed for police overtime after protest BBC

Black Injustice Tipping Point

Sources: LeBron James sought out Barack Obama for advice to players The Atlantic

Michael Jordan played key role in NBA boycott negotiations: report The Hill

MMT

The Fed’s New Policy Means Rates Will Stay Lower Longer. The Price: Financial Turbulence. Barrons. Mosler comments:

And JW Mason:

Too soon?

Why Isn’t Modern Monetary Theory Common Knowledge? Economics from the Top Down. “What we really need, then, is not so much a theory of money, but a theory of why people misunderstand money.”

Social Security Could Stay Solvent Forever by Issuing Bonds Businessweek

Class Warfare

‘A totally different ballgame’: Inside Uber and Lyft’s fight over gig worker status CNET (Hubert Horan). Horan comments: “First serious bit of journalism I’ve seen about the Uber/Lyft campaign to repeal AB5”. In CNET….

Why Jeff Bezos Is Worth $200 Billion Matt Stoller, BIG

OnlyFans denies that Bella Thorne prompted new spending restrictions on site Los Angeles Times

Who will tell us the truth about class in America? FT. “[I]f social codes could be simply stated, they would be easily overcome, and they would lose their point.”

Musk-backed Neuralink unveils upgraded brain-implant technology FT. I see you shiver with antici… pation:

Antidote du jour (via):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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About Lambert Strether

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

319 comments

  1. Samuel Conner

    Note 1 in the item on “Why is MMT not common knowledge?” asserts that banks create money, and by implication the same kind of money that the State creates (he likens banks’ relation to the State money issuer to military contractors’ relation to the State armed forces), but that’s not quite right. Bank money is temporary, while State money is permanent (until taxed out of existence). Bank money creation does not increase the total amount of Reserves, while State money creation does.

    IIRC, in MMT literature, State money is referred to as “vertical” while bank money (and other forms of non-government credit creation) are referred to as “horizontal”. It’s an important distinction. Bank lending can’t permanently finance increased demand; it only moves it forward in time (a point that Steve Keen has been making for a long time).

    I Lambert has often written that “the power to destroy a thing is the power to control it.” AFAICT, only State money issuers have the power to destroy money (through taxation).

    Reply
      1. Samuel Conner

        It’s a good question, and the thought occurred to go in to that when posting the comment.

        I think :

        If the bank is still solvent after the loan defaults, it absorbs the loss (after any recovery through the legal system) and the un-repaid bank money vanishes (as if the loan had been repaid). Total vertical money is unchanged.

        If the bank is not solvent, things are more complicated. There might be FDIC involvement to make depositors whole. This does not change total vertical money provided that the FDIC intervention does not make the FDIC itself insolvent. Or, if things are really bad, there might be Federal involvement to bail out the bank (and probably other banks), and this might involve creation of new vertical money to fund the bailout.

        So, in a very indirect way, in principle banks can do things that result in the creation of additional vertical money to clean up the messes they make in their maladminstration of their authority to create horizontal money.

        Reply
        1. Mel

          “I think :If the bank is still solvent […]”

          Seems right. An interesting way to look at bank lending is that the bank promises to spend its money to do the borrower’s business, and the borrower will make it up later. If the borrower never makes it up, then the bank is out the money it spent, and there it is.

          Reply
          1. USDisVet

            When you deposit money into your bank account, you become a creditor under our very pernicious banking laws. Essentially you have “loaned ” money to the bank and in case the bank becomes insolvent, you have to stand in line to get your money bank. But you never get anywhere near 100% of your money back because the assets of the insolvent bank miraculously flip into a newly formed corporation that after legal fees and administrative costs will yield to you, a creditor, perhaps 10 cents on the dollar.

            Reply
        2. jef

          When a bank loans $100 it gets back $105 or whatever, so $5 IS created somehow. Loan out hundreds of millions on an ongoing basis and that $5 becomes real money it would seem.

          Reply
          1. Odysseus

            When a bank loans $100 it gets back $105 or whatever, so $5 IS created somehow.

            Not created, no. Interest is always reallocated from someone where else already existing.

            Reply
          2. Jason Boxman

            But what if everyone takes out a $100 loan at the same time? That interest payment has to come from somewhere, so it comes from savings and cash flow. Eventually, there’s no savings left and some people will default. (This assumes the supply of vertical money remains constant forever.)

            I think ultimately the vertical money supply must increase to permanently manifest that ‘new’ interest payment money, or it’s just shuffling funds around.

            Reply
            1. Yves Smith

              Please stop making stuff up. Loans do not come from pre-existing savings. Period.

              And you assume that there is only a financial economy, not that the loans could have gone to productive activity that generate profit.

              Reply
              1. Steve

                A careful reading of the above does not conflict. The statement is about the interest payment in regards the loan coming from somewhere…savings or as cash flow (presumably from the loan itself). I would seek an understanding on what is profit here. The profit, price paid, has to come from somewhere as well.

                Reply
          3. Samuel Conner

            How the rest of the economy could operate over the long term without continuing injections of State “vertical” money to make up for what is skimmed off in bank interest is a valid concern.

            I think that, in principle, the skim could for a while be made up for through an increase in the velocity of the remaining cash pool in the hands of the non-bank sector, but that obviously has limits.

            In practice, I think that careful analysis would show that banks’ “take” comes, in the final analysis, out of the financial assets that are created and injected into the economy by State deficit spending. A Philip Pilkington post some years ago at NC made a similar point with regard to corporate profits. This is a relatively old (from mid 20th century, I think) insight, but I can’t recall the name of the original proponent of the idea.

            Reply
          4. rhodium

            Oh boy… Bank makes $100 dollar loan. The money is spent by the debtor. Someone then books that money as revenue and to various people it is paid out as income. Some of that income is saved and deposited back at the bank. It’s the same base money but because it’s come full circle the bank now owns a loan and cash. The bank loans out the money and creates a new loan, the same process repeats and so on. There is a limit to this eventually, as the money cannot be infinitely loaned out due to leverage limits (some percentage of cash must be kept by the bank courtesy of good regulations). This should not be hard to understand.

            Reply
      2. Louis Fyne

        deflation/disinflation.

        same as you taking a pile of $100 bills and burning it.

        money destroyed,.. remaining money becomes marginally more valuable

        Reply
        1. Anonymous

          Don’t think so. It’s bank loan REPAYMENT that destroys deposits.

          Instead the bank loses equity.

          Now reduction in equity reduces the ability of the bank to create additional deposits because of capital requirements but the deposits it has already created continue to exist (in other banks) until extinguished by other means.

          Reply
          1. HotFlash

            Bank lending has absolutely *nothing* to do with deposits. A bank loan is not backed by anything, it is simply keystrokes. At least in my country, since 1985, doubt if yours is far behind. Bank loses some profits (interest) it might have made, but there is no actual “inventory” (deposits) lost.

            Reply
            1. Wukchumni

              Humbly report sir, who knew that typing would be so very important to our financial future, and yet the steno pool of no consequence?

              Reply
            2. JP

              A bank loan results in a deposit. If it is withdrawn and used to buy something it pretty well always gets deposited somewhere else.

              Reply
            3. Bill Smith

              A bank (aka Federally Insurance Depository Institution) has to have borrowings, deposits or equity to make a loan. How any of those get there is another question.

              In the end Assets have to equal LIabilities and Equity or there are problems.

              Reply
              1. Foy

                Assets do have to equal Liabilities and Equity, it just doesn’t happen in the way you think.

                From bank’s perspective when it makes loan:

                DR Asset account – Loan to borrower
                CR Liability Account – Deposit

                All in balance and money has been made out of thin air.

                The deposit doesn’t have to come from anywhere. It is created at the time of the loan. When will people stop saying what you say and actually go and learn about it?

                Reply
      3. Detroit Dan

        What happens to the bank money when loans that can’t be repaid aren’t repaid? [GramSci]

        There are 2 types of money:
        1. Public money
        2. Bank money

        When a bank loan is not repaid, public money remains higher than it would be if the loan were repaid. Bank money takes the hit, reducing the authority of banks to make loans and the ability of banks to repay their bank money debts. Banks as private corporations should pay the price.
        Ultimately, the central bank may have to step in to avoid systematic problems with bank money which might otherwise spread to public money.

        Reply
        1. Anonymous

          It’s true what you say but let’s be clear:

          In your scheme:
          1) “Public money” = private bank deposits.*
          2) “Bank money” = the Nation’s fiat, which ONLY the banks may use in account form.

          Isn’t it outrageous then that the public’s money is largely private bank deposits and that only the banks may use the Nation’s fiat*?

          * except for mere physical fiat, grubby coins and paper Central Bank Notes that the non-bank public may have.

          Reply
        2. Anonymous

          Bank money takes the hit, Detroit Dan

          Don’t you mean bank equity since the non-repayment of bank loans should not reduce bank reserves in aggregate?

          Reply
          1. Gramsci

            Saml Conner’s first reply on this thread matched my thoughts, too, but I have a hard time following the details; they all look like scams.

            Reply
    1. HotFlash

      As far as I can tell, bank-issued money (loans, mortgages, credit cards, etc.), even in the case of uncollectible bad debt, bankruptcy or other loan-not-paid situation, the $$$ simply disappears to the same place it appeared from: digits. Banks can issue money (the aforesaid loans, etc.), but the interest is ‘real’ money, ie, not created by the bank. The interest you have to pay, which oftentimes exceeds the value of the loan, is not created by the bank. Where does that come from (rhetorial question).

      Bonuses to CEO’s serve to skim the (real) cream to the +10%. If it all goes pear-shaped, the house in the Hamptons is still fine. May have a problem paying the nanny and the poolboy, but life is full of hardship. And f it *all* goes pear-shaped, then They still have the real $$$.

      Reply
      1. Samuel Conner

        It’s a good question, and the answer — I think — is found in Kalecki’s profit equation, which was nicely summarized with a stylized example in an old NC post:

        https://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2011/08/philip-pilkington-profits-in-a-capitalist-economy-%E2%80%93-where-do-they-come-from-where-do-they-go.html

        Shorter version (very stylized), if you don’t have an export surplus, corporate profits, in aggregate, can happen only if the State runs a deficit.

        Reply
    2. Oh

      The current Fed policy and the recepients of the largesse appears to show that MMT in the hands of neo liberals and neo cons will do nothing for the betterment of this country. More and more money will end up in the hands of the few billionaires and huge corporations and little will be spent where it will be direly needed – on infrastructure, education, food stamps, welfare for the poor, etc. etc. Instead, money will be spent on more weapons, wars, for FIRE and for big corporations to buy other companies and increase their oligapolistic (and in many cases, monopolistic) grip on the market.

      Reply
      1. Gramsci

        I think MMT has been in the hands of the neolibcons for quite a long time. It’s a description of how things are, not how they should be. But to get to where things are as they should be, one first needs to know how they are.

        Reply
    3. JP

      Most people are confused about what money is in general. They are further confused by the hard currency in their wallets. Most people think of money in terms of hard currency. And, of course, there are those that think hard currency is the only real money in spite of the fact that you can’t eat gold and it won’t in and of itself keep you dry or warm. Money is always a social construct. Its utility (moneyness) depends only on how well it facilitates trade.

      Reply
      1. Ook

        “Money is a social construct.” That’s good, I think I’ll use it. :)
        But I’d say its utility depends on how well it facilitates taxes, trade being a secondary effect.

        Reply
    1. Richard H Caldwell

      I want to say ‘Photoshop’, but cats are capable of just about anything. It’s quite a picture to consider

      Reply
          1. oliverks

            I think someone is taking the link from a few days ago on heating your house with cats a little too seriously.

            Reply
      1. Scott D

        I’ve been to one of these cat islands in Japan. When the ferry shows up, the cats all come to the dock expecting food from tourists.

        Reply
      2. a different chris

        I guessed it was that cat island in Japan (I think it’s Japan?).

        Yeah this comment is worth what you paid for it.

        Reply
      3. bruce

        Check out the wiki for “My Wife’s Lovers”, a huge painting by Carl Kahler depicting 42 Turkish Angora cats staring impassively out of a 227 pound canvas at you, which was exhibited awhile back in Portland.

        Reply
        1. Unfinished

          Thank you for the link to the article. I had misremembered, the photo was, in fact, taken on Chandoha’s own farm.

          Reply
  2. Eric Patton

    “Who will tell us the truth about class in America?”

    Michael Albert. Did this decades ago. But no one likes the implications of his work.

    Reply
      1. Eric Patton

        For mathematical critiques (proved theorems) of the systemic failings of markets, central planning, and private ownership, see Quiet Revolution in Welfare Economics (free online book), or the book can be bought here. The book is geared toward professional economists (it contains real math), but the text itself is not inaccessible to lay people.

        The Political Economy of Participatory Economics (free online book) is the formal mathematical model of an alternative to capitalism and all forms of socialism. The book can also be bought here. This book is geared toward professional economists, but the first half of the book (prior to the introduction of the formal mathematical model of participatory economics) should be readily accessible to most people.

        Parecon: Life After Capitalism (free online book) is essentially Political Economy without the math, plus added chapters addressing common questions about the parecon model. It is a complete introduction to participatory economics and should probably be considered the “go-to” text for most people. It can also be bought here.

        Here is a brief (one-thousand-word) introduction to participatory economics suitable for those who wish to consider whether any of the above books is worth their time. (Note that the parecon.org website mentioned by Albert at the end of the essay is no longer run by Albert.)

        Reply
        1. Eric Patton

          Meant to include one more link to a longer essay on parecon — partly for the essay itself, which is good — but more so for the citation by former Soviet president Mikhail Gorbachev. Yes, it is real.

          Reply
    1. Wukchumni

      Class: A Guide Through the American Status System by Paul Fussell, is a bit dated now, but what a Baedeker.

      To this day when I see a prole that isn’t a catcher for a baseball team wearing a baseball hat backwards on their noggin, I mentally subtract 15 IQ points from them. ha ha!

      Reply
    1. Tom Stone

      Dunno, Rev.
      Maybe he could offer them free watermelons if they show up at the piggly wiggly with an “I Voted” sticker?

      Reply
    2. Off The Street

      One big thing that any candidate could do for Black men, and Black women, is to commit to reversing the family-destruction and family-prevention policies that have been in place since the 1960s. Blacks used to form families at an impressive rate. Taking that away was stupid and doomed to failure, so yet again another manipulative policy where people’s lives were shuffled around like so many game pieces.

      The above isn’t a panacea, but would be a significant step in restoration of stability and participation in daily life that the participants themselves have said that they want. Why won’t politicians listen and take action?

      Reply
      1. Brian (another one they call)

        Please see above regarding the confusion of money, value, interest, inflation, creation and destruction. Or, just admit that our nation has done everything it can to cause privation for all that aren’t a member of the club of 3%. We, the people get to pay for the mistakes of banks, governments, politicians, industries. And since we can’t pay, we all get poorer, day after day.
        If we were to have an adult discussion on the cost of living going up 10% per year and how that relates to income and expenses, we would notice that the numbers can never add up to anything but poverty for all of those outside “the club”.
        Be careful when you wish for the destruction of everything made and valued before we went mad. Much like Germany just after WW1.

        Reply
      2. marym

        Can you specify the policies you want reversed (presumably for non-Black people as well)?

        My candidates for reversal and repair of damage to families would include policies resulting in: mass incarceration (1994); foreclosures (2009); ending bankruptcy protections for student loan debt (2005); and failure to protect workers during a pandemic (2020).

        Reply
        1. Off The Street

          Start with welfare, for all people, where households were forced to break up in order to qualify.
          That atomization of families may as well have been titled pink mist.

          Reply
          1. Aumua

            So you’re saying reform welfare, or just get rid of it? I don’t know for sure, but I don’t think there are many cases where a couple would split up because they had to in order to get welfare benefits.

            Reply
            1. Off The Street

              Welfare reform.
              There was a lot of academic and other work done in the 1960s and 1970s about the destructive effects of splitting up families in order to receive welfare.

              Here is a search link for you to peruse.

              Combine that policy change with a trend toward more tenuous social connections as the economy went through riots, Vietnam protests, the OPEC oil shocks and other impacts and that set back a generation of what used to be families. The echoes are still being felt, and yet another generation of politicians ignores the fundamental issues.

              The causality isn’t difficult to see:
              Household formation/retention >
              Neighborhood stability >
              Better school performance >
              More stable society

              Reply
      3. workingclasshero

        Also a full employment economy/job guarantee with a decent retirement security would help stabilize the finances of black or any other stressed community’s in the u.s.also bring back a well thought out version of aid to families with dependant children.

        Reply
      4. anon in so cal

        Globalization and deindustrialization clobbered black (and white, etc.) families by disappearing the manufacturing jobs that allowed entry to the middle class. Separately, though, the definition of a family has changed such that, on some campuses, the ‘nuclear family’ is close to a borderline supremacist concept if presented as some kind of normative standard. Discussion of “single parent families” can even be considered a discriminatory discourse. People of all races and ethnicities still form families, maybe just not along “traditional” lines. “Promises I Can Keep: Why Poor Women Put Motherhood Before Marriage” examines why single women opt for motherhood outside of marriage and employment.

        There is a fairly widespread decline in marriage and “traditional” family formation styles. This can mean new sources of intractable inequality related to a decline in marriage among non-college-educated, lower-income individuals, especially working class males, and delayed marriage and parenting among college-educated, higher income types. The two sets of offspring are on different paths.

        Reply
    3. John k

      Logically the campaign should remind black men of all their reasons to hate joe.
      Obama’s neglect was far nicer than Biden’s attention.

      Reply
        1. ambrit

          It shows how degraded the Democrat Party has become when you think that Dick Nixon, that old Republican Socialist reprobate, promulgated the idea of “benign neglect” when dealing with recalcitrant elements in society.
          Read: https://www.nytimes.com/1970/03/01/archives/benign-neglect-on-race-is-proposed-by-moynihan-moynihan-urges.html
          Looking at the above, it becomes difficult to shake the feeling that the Democrat Party is now where the Republican Party was back then.

          Reply
  3. Krystyn Podgajski

    “What’s Driving Political Violence in America? ”

    But aggression can go too far when inner and outer restraints are absent.

    They killed the Gods and replaced them with capitalism and politics which both value aggressive traits in the quest for financial power. God is the antidote and the restraint that is needed. To be religious is to seek the source of that amorality and let it act through us. Then we act not for ourselves, but for God. And in fact you will find you do not act at all.

    God, to me, is a metaphor for community, and not just the human community. God is the matrix that holds the world in balance and in a peace that sustains itself through amoral conflict. All this conflict now, it is unnecessary MORAL conflict, it is humans acting for our egos, driven insane by the news and social media. They have given us all an identity and made us addicted to our ego, and now they make us fight by saying the other side is trying to take it away.

    Find God and let it take over your body. God is the inner and outer, the Alpha and Omega, the Yin and The Yang.

    Reply
  4. Tom Stone

    I hope that they are using the right kind of music to set the mood when they are simulating the kind of conversations that take place in black barbershops, I have some Louis Armstrong 78’s I could donate to the cause…

    Reply
  5. Tom Stone

    I hope they are playing the right kind of music to set the mood when they are simulating the kind of conversations that take place in Black barbersops.
    I have some Loius Armstrong 78’s I’d be happy to donate if that would help.

    Reply
  6. Jessica

    Sorry, but coming right after the article about Musk’s folks putting an implant in an animal brain, the daily antidote was more a dote than an antidote.

    Reply
  7. The Rev Kev

    “A 29-Year-Old’s Strange, Unforgettable Trip Into a Covid Coma and Back”

    After reading this I had a crazy idea. Patients like this in coma seem to be integrating what they hear into their consciousness which suggest the susceptibility of someone in a sleep. So, what would happen if you had a professional hypnotist visit these patients to help treat them? They could go through the methods of putting someone in a deep sleep as a matter of course, but then slip in suggestions that their bodies are fighting the virus, that new defenses are destroying the virus itself as their body adapts, that they will live and that they have the love and support of their friends & family with them. What harm would it do to try?

    Reply
    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      If we have that kind of control, sure why not? Hypnotists can help with memory recall and getting a person to do what they want to do but better. Hypnosis doesn’t help a fat person who wasn’t going to lose weight to lose weight. It might help a person keep it off and adopt a life style conducive to doing it or to avoid binging.

      Reply
  8. Code Name D

    You Tube is starting to talk about a market crash. Anecdotal of course, but its clear that the markets increasingly hard to ignore divorce from reality is starting to draw attention. So far, I can split these videos into three categories.

    The first is out-right denial. I encountered one market analyst barely old enough to drink basically said, “why would the markets crash, they are doing so well and the economy is recovering.”

    The second category is of the government debt=hyperinflation mode. Once Biden gets in, he will spend-spend-spend, dooming the US to crushing hyperinflation. Yawn. But at least one made the connection to massive Fed interventions to the money supply. His thinking was that if the Fed continued to intervene without restrained, this could cause the inflation-monster to rise up and devourer the stock-market.

    The third is a bit more serious. None could exactly predict when the market would crash, but they still argued that a massive crash was inevitable, giving it less than two years. And what made their arguments credible was they included non-governmental debt in the mix. And boy do they paint an ugly picture. Tight-oil, air lines, entertainment, housing, municipal bonds, corporate bounds, small business loans, agriculture, nearly EVERY sector is drowning in debt. And that debt is growing rapidly as firm’s barrow just to stay alive. This new debt is what is making the banks look so good. This despite federal reserve intervention. At least one coined the “Humpty dumpty effect,” arguing that the markets have already crashed, as evidenced by the scramble of all the king’s horses and king’s men.

    As a rule, all firms and were already heavily leveraged going into the crises. Once COVID struck and their revenue streams were impacted, firms had to barrow more to replace lost revenue – just to service old debt.

    Worse, firms are starting to barrow to invest in the stock market. A cardinal sin learned from 1929. But firms are doing this largely because they have no choice. The more the fed intervenes, the worse the problem gets. So, the question gets asked, can even the Fed’s infinite money supply keep the stock market afloat?

    Reply
    1. Samuel Conner

      I have read it suggested that the financial asset markets have decoupled from the “real” economy of production and consumption.

      If that’s right, I’m wondering to what extent the level of the markets matters to the real economy. I suppose that a large decline would have a “wealth effect”, but that’s a 2nd order and relatively small effect in comparison with the first order consequences of the decline in employment and consumption that are occurring because of the pandemic and the side-effects of the mitigation efforts.

      Perhaps a large market decline would do damage to the financial plumbing of the economy, which would have significant first-order effects on the real economy.

      We need better plumbing. What are the plumbers up to?

      Reply
      1. Grumpy Engineer

        Oh, yes. Financial markets have definitely become de-coupled from the state of the real economy. It was apparent back even in the Obama days. If the jobs report was bad, stocks shot up. If the jobs report was good, stocks fell. The market reacted more to anticipated Fed support than it did to actual health of the economy. This trend continues through today.

        Part of me would love to see a big market crash, just so we could quit focusing so much on the damned stock market and pay more attention to the real economy. But another part of me knows what the side-effects would be… In particular, if there were a market crash, major stockholders would be screaming at CEOs to do “whatever is takes” to get stock prices back up, which would include massive cost-cutting measures (i.e., layoffs) to permit more stock buybacks and boost various profitability metrics.

        So it wouldn’t be the crash that directly caused problems. Instead, it would be the response of major stockholders (particularly those that borrowed money to buy stocks) to the crash that would cause problems.

        Reply
    2. Wukchumni

      There really isn’t any possibility of hyperinflation on account of excessive manna being not evident under the aegis of computerized money, so in lieu of a slow buildup towards a crescendo of cash not being worth anything such as Weimar in 1923-24, or a longer stanza such as Mexico from 1980 to 1992, it will come in my opinion as a all of the sudden shock to the system.

      Military Monetary Theory worked because we were the de facto policeman to the world and accepted as such. Do you think other countries would be responsive to Mopes Monetary Theory, where the largess goes to regular joes in these not so United States?

      Reply
    3. tegnost

      I think they did just enough to get to/past the election, at which point austerity rules for the plebes and status quo ante rapacious greed and asymmetrical power for the tech giants which will be excused as necessary to save the nation from all those “low information” (i.e., stupid, but that’s not polite so…) who are trying to thwart the goals of the smarts.
      Paraphrasing Hemingway, collapse, like bankruptcy, happens slowly, and then all at once

      Reply
    4. jef

      If there is to be a crash it would have to be intentional as there is no reason they can’t keep it going as they are now doing. As Samuel said the market is disconnected from the economy so IMO the trigger has been removed and it would have to be a conscious decision to “pull it”.

      Reply
      1. John k

        I see it as a conscience decision to keep it afloat until after the election to avoid being seen as political. Similarly we are already seeing reluctance to spend more on workers, Biden campaign signaling cupboard is bare and reps limiting what they’re willing to spend. Plus fed seems to have balance sheet fatigue.
        After election deluge might arrive, whoever is pres will want to show recovery in 3rd year.

        Reply
    5. JP

      Where does gov’t debt go? It goes to the private sector. The idea that gov’t debt will bankrupt us is a story invented by republicans whenever the democrats are in control. The real economy has only grown on Trumps watch because big tax breaks and outright treasury transfers have juiced it. If Biden wins expect the Repubs to insist on austerity to control non-existent runaway inflation and reduce the debt. Biden will have a hard time spending anywhere near as much as Trump.

      Oil is not tight. Oil is cheap. Airlines are toast except for bailouts. Housing is a rising sector and will do fine because mortgages are well secured (not like the last time), bonds are debt and mostly not held by banks. Small business has not gone on a borrowing spree. Any firm that is borrowing just to stay alive requires a lender who is either stupid or back by Gov’t guarantees. It isn’t debt that will cause the market to crash. I wouldn’t look for the market to crash but it is cruising for a major correction. When that happens I will probably be a buyer but I am not making any predictions. Lots of factors at play.

      Reply
      1. jsn

        Tight oil is is another word for fracked oil which has alway required debt because without free money it was never economic.

        Fed policy has made financial markets a perpetual motion machine detached from reality. With infinite purchasing power the Fed can buy anything available in the financial markets in whatever quantities it chooses to make it trade at whatever price it wants.

        Until 2008 it chose only to purchase its own bonds to control the price of money, after 2008 it started buying other bonds in order to create an illusion of solvency for TBTF banks while they looted the middle class, particularly the black middle class, to rebuild their balance sheets.

        Now, it buys whatever it looks like might spook the markets and the mature players know you can’t beat the Fed so they just take the funny money valuations and dividends that sustain the illusion while netting them real money. Sooner or later reality will intrude on the perpetual motion machine, but it won’t be some internal signal from financial markets, which are now completely self referential. It will be some Outside political, biological or ecological event that forces the Fed to impose massive losses somewhere to maintain its own power in world markets..

        Reply
      2. Code Name D

        Keep in mind most of these you-tubers are idiots with delusions of adequacy. Most are predicting a crash, but their reasoning is all over the chart. Here is a few of the justifications: the 9-year cycle, the 12 year cycle, bubble pattern, exploding federal debt, exploding privet debt, over regulation, Russian plot (Yep, one through it was a Russian plot to keep Trump in office. Not sure how that works but…), the Aluminidi, late stage capitalism, early stage socialism/communism, the Fed is doing it on purpose, the fed will run out of ammunition, and a precursor to hyperinflation.

        Oddly, no one mentioned COVID or unemployment. Or even the most obvious explanation, that market is (GASP!!!) over-priced. The only thing really of note here is they, and their audience, is becoming increasingly concerned about a market crash.

        Now will the market crash? That is another question entirely. I think it will, but I must admit I can’t the mechanism. The fed is pumping trillions into the market, and has an infinite capacity to do so. Most stock trades are handled by computer algorithms, so nerves and fear aren’t a factor. But that is usually when things go terribly wrong.

        Reply
  9. upstater

    Would the dynamic in MA-01 be different if Alex Morse was having sex with women students while employed as a lecturer? I think identity political types would behave rather differently in that case.

    Reply
    1. edmondo

      One candidate is unmarried has sex with college students. The other sleeps with Fortune 500 companies. You decide which is the bigger whore.

      Reply
    2. Count Zero

      It’s a good question, upstate. And I think I agree with your implied answer: he’d have had a hard time with the “Me-Tooists” and some tearful female victim would probably have been discovered. I do think that as a University teacher, even part-time, he was “unwise” to have sexual relations with any student at that University, irrespective of their sexuality.

      Reply
      1. Anthony Noel

        I’ve had the opposite response then many people who call the attacks against Mr. Morse homophobic. I’d argue they are not the result of homophobia but the exact opposite. It’s a byproduct of continued mainstream acceptance of gay men.

        The inevitable outcome of more mainstream acceptance of being gay is you get your Oppression Olympic status revoked.

        Remember who launched the attacks and who immediately accepted them and ran from him, revoking endorsements as fast as they could. The “woke” section of the Democratic party, the least likely section of the Democratic tent to harbor any major level of homophobia. So Mr. Morse is now just a powerful, privileged white man and since male sexuality has been pathologized and criminalized among that same group then the fact that he’s gay no longer identifies him as an oppressed outlier that lets him claim status and protection from them. He’s just another white male now which for a large section of the “woke” crowd means you are if not immediately guilty, then at least you are immediately suspect.

        Reply
  10. John

    Tough talk without the means to back it up is not going to impress China or the nations in its neighborhood. Would that the US had a China policy instead of ad hoc tactics.

    Reply
  11. timbers

    2020

    My 85-ish Father, Republican, and Trump supporter….sent me pics of the riot in Minneapolis. First pic showed damage to the ground floor of the building of his condo in the Nicolette Mall. The following day he sent pic of National Guard trucks parking on the side walk outside the building just across the street.

    The internets say Biden did not get a bounce from DNC convention, while Trump did get a significant bounce from RNC convention. Not a good sign for Dems. The polls make sense because DNC ignored is so called base (or spit in it’s face with all the warmongering and rejection of healthcare for Americans despite the implied spending spree on wars) while the RNC hyped it’s base voters.

    I still say Dems best chance to win in November is to Out Trump Trump. Say Russia is causing these riots and promise DHS tanks and military toys on every inner city street corner and demand to know why Trump hasn’t already done this? Pound the table for Law & Order. If Dems insist on chasing Repub voters, 2016 and previous shows baby steps isn’t very effective. So go big this time or go home if that’s the strategy you can think of.

    Or give the keys to Bernie Sanders or Tulsi Gabbard or similar and get out of the way.

    Reply
    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      I think once upon a time there was a reasonable estimation that the Third Way sort of made sense, but the Clinton Administration should have out that to rest. The voters Team Blue hopes to win already believe “The Democrat” party (cue a DailyKultist) is a bunch of blood traitors. Team Blue in their bizarre desire to be accepted by these people can’t even make phony promises to their base instead preferring to bask in the approval of a handful of career Republicans who are heavily isolated in a few safe districts and only hate Trump over career related reasons. Biden could promise to make “Birth of a Nation” mandatory viewing for Antifa (anyone who ever liked a BLM social media post), a day the GOP would call him a socialist. I’m still surprised they aren’t demanding Biden denounce the Pope which coincidentally is why the whole Biden reads the scribblings of 3000 year old goat shaggers is meaningless to the Evangelicals the message is meant to play to.

      Reply
      1. Hepativore

        This adds credence to the theory that the Democrats do not actually care if they win the presidential election, as they have hedged their bets either way. If they lose, they can try and make more political hay out of more empty, moralistic, hand-wringing over Trump and the latest incarnation of Russiagate. If they win, the Biden administration will be packed so full of neoliberals and neocons that it will be like a third term of W. Bush. Either way, the Democrats will accomplish their goal of protecting their wealthy donors as stopping the left is the real objective, not winning elections.
        Sadly, this also means that the left is naive in thinking that they are going to be able to push Biden anywhere politically. The Democratic Party has shown that it is willing to lose if it cannot win on its own terms rather than let the left have any power whatsoever.

        How much leverage can you have over an organization that knows that it is in a “heads it wins, tails you lose” situation?

        Reply
          1. John k

            Yes, absolutely.
            And when trump called out Iraq as a horrible mistake in 2016, he was also calling out the dems that voted for it, and the intelligence agents that lied about, making them all realize he was an traitor to the imperial world leader and must be stopped or removed. Explains why bush, Clinton and Obama’s are all such good buddies, they agree on everything.

            Reply
            1. marym

              Agree that Bushes, Clintons and Obamas agree on everything, but Trump just says stuff. Then he says some other stuff.

              2016
              “But Trump…did hedge on one of the most explosive claims he made during the debate: that the Bush administration deliberately misled the country in the run-up to war.

              Asked repeatedly by an audience member and moderator Anderson Cooper whether he stood by those comments, Trump declined to give a direct answer.

              “Well a lot of people agree with what I said and I’m not talking about lying, I’m not talking about not lying” Trump said. “Nobody really knows why we went into Iraq.””

              https://www.politico.com/blogs/south-carolina-primary-2016-live-updates-and-results/2016/02/2016-south-carolina-trump-george-w-bushs-iraq-219475

              Reply
          2. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

            Anyone who doubts the veracity of this need only cast an eye on the list of Republican “luminary” POWs the DNC seconded to the “Resistance” cause at the “Convention”.

            If your task was to construct a list of the worst people in America, who had cost the country the most long-term damage through their murderous, illegal, and financially obliterationist policies, well your task is complete.

            Pulling the lever for The Biden apparently means you believe that Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, The Ukraine, and the entire tapestry of lies of RussiaGate were all really great. I know I know Orange Obama sends rude Tweets and the list of his faults is long, but starting brand new foreign wars is not one of them.

            Reply
        1. lordkoos

          For some years I’ve maintained that Democrats don’t care about winning. Why else do they continue to run such lackluster, charisma-challenged centrist candidates? Mondale, Dukakis, Gore, Kerry, Hillary — it’s a long list of losers. And now Biden, who perfectly fits this pattern. It’s long past time for the left to start a new party.

          Reply
    2. Chas

      All Biden has to do to win is come out full force for Medicare for All, but he can’t do that because he has taken so much money from the Health Care Industrial Complex that they own him. If he had the courage to become unbought his popularity would soar because polls show well more than half of Americans favor M4A. Another thing Biden could do is support free college for all students at publicly owned colleges. That would really excite young people. Nobody is excited about Sleepy Joe. To win he’s got to emerge from the basement and stir up some excitement.

      Reply
      1. timbers

        +1. Have long wondered why a so called wonkish incrementalist most experienced ever Dem or similar can’t contemplate throwing 1 donor under the bus (for profit healthcare/insurance) for the greater good and their improved electability. Some of them are really good at throwing under the bus.

        Reply
        1. hidflect

          I had occasion to interface with a PhRMA lobbyist when I was working PR in Japan and despite our assurances that it was impossible he was able to arrange a meeting with the then-Prime minister of Japan on two week’s notice. Normally, even other heads of state need to give 3 months notice. This was one guy. Imagine a whole industry.

          Reply
          1. Yves Smith

            This reflects a total misunderstanding of how Japanese society works. The head guy is not in charge. Decisions are made by senior-mid level guys (40-45 years old). Consensus is the word Westerners use but the process is way more sharp-elbowed. But perceived stakeholders are expected to influence the decision. Sending it up to the top boss is most of the time a formality but occasionally a bit more tires-kicking takes place. That is why it was easier to see the PM. His role is far more ceremonial than for any other advanced economy head of state.

            Reply
      2. NotTimothyGeithner

        “Excitement” is for an earlier time. Biden’s problem is he has a record and his salute to Bob Dole reinforced his record.

        He’s beyond excitement. Biden’s promises will always live in the shadow of his record, and despite the claims of Obama, people who like Biden and Sanders know very little about at least on people of them. Biden was ultimately dangerous because he isn’t a known commodity, just a famous name.

        Reply
        1. edmondo

          Biden’s problem is he has a record….

          Apparently not. NO ONE wants to talk about Joe’s record. He’s been consistently wrong for 50 years. Let’s promote him.

          Reply
          1. Billy

            Stop making things up!
            Biden was only in the senate starting 48 years ago, 1972.

            Anyone feel like losing weight? Watch Hillary Clinton on The Circus and toss your cookies.
            Especially noteworty, the cow in the Au-Current among progressives, clear eyeglasses, raising her fists.

            Hillary Clinton: Trump Can Only Win by ‘Suppressing or Intimidating’ Voters | THE CIRCUS |

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_lCfGdFEi0U

            Reply
      3. dougie

        Conversely, I am a bit surprised that Trump hasn’t already done this. It is pretty much his Party to do with as he pleases. Trump outflanks Biden on the left with promises of M4A, and he wins the election by double digits. He can walk it all back later.

        Reply
        1. wadge22

          Agree. And Covid could be his perfect excuse.

          For the both flip now, and the flop whenever there’s a recovery.

          Reply
          1. NotTimothyGeithner

            Covid is the only way it would work. But even then, I’m not sure Biden is going to motivate anyone to do anything on his behalf at this time.

            Its important to remember the conceit of the 50 state strategy was democratic sympathizing non voters often don’t pay attention until it’s too late. They might like the message, but if its limited to msdnc, it goes nowhere. Biden like HRC needs to offer up human sacrifices from the previous regime to motivate anyone.

            Reply
        2. Anonymous

          My understanding is that US healthcare is the most innovative, if you can afford it, in the world.

          So US healthcare is for the rich and powerful.

          So why would they give up the hope of cheating Death for a system that’s less expensive and less innovative for a system that helps everyone?

          Otoh, Death CANNOT be defeated by mere human means and those who worship wealth and power don’t have very bright prospects of achieving Life after death either, imo

          Reply
          1. ambrit

            As for cheating Death; if the boffins ever do figure out how to upload an entire human personality into the ‘Cloud,’ it’s “PLAYER ONE; GAME OVER!”
            (There is one stream of thought that posits that the Sociopathic Personalities that ‘our’ system selects for are of vastly simpler in design and complexity. This would make them the first prospects for a “successful” Upload.)
            The entire Upload meme has so many angles and corners that I fear mightily that if it ever happens, Technological Civilization would destroy itself in short order. The internal contradictions and narcissist level power struggles would “short circuit” the Byteosphere.

            Reply
        3. neo-realist

          It’s no surprise that he hasn’t come out for M4A: It’s not part of Trump’s makeup, nor is it the makeup of the republican wing of the money party to come out for such redistributive policies that benefit the 99%. The expectations would be so high for such a policy coming to fruition that faking it would potentially devastate the GOP in the congressional races, so I don’t think they would ever fake M4A

          Reply
        4. JWP

          I don’t think trump even wants to integrate Biden the person into his election strategy. It’s trump and his supporters versus everyone is the mantra he’s going for. So long as he is dictating the terms of discussion, he’s winning. Allowing Biden in and mentioning his record and policies takes that advantage away from him. Especially because now Trump has a record too.

          Reply
        5. John k

          He doesn’t have to walk it back, the dems won’t let it out of committee.
          Would love to see the dem leadership show they’re more sold out than he is.

          Reply
      4. nycTerrierist

        interesting piece. One wonders whether the Dems really want to win…

        https://www.jacobinmag.com/2020/08/joe-biden-cancel-student-debt-trump

        “If the stakes are as high as Democratic Party elites say they are, why aren’t they doing more to motivate people to vote? Why aren’t they pushing a simple, cheap plan that would inspire a once-in-a-generation voting boom?

        Part of the answer comes from who would benefit from student debt cancellation. While people of all ages and backgrounds hold student debt, it is concentrated most heavily among young people, and heaviest of all among black and Latino young people. These are the groups who were most likely to vote for Bernie Sanders in the primary and who are least likely to vote in general.

        Imagine the electoral impact if Sanders and Biden were to appear on stage side by side to announce that Biden had decided to fully adopt Bernie’s plan to cancel student debt.

        Unfortunately, Biden has done nothing of the kind. In fact, he’s done nothing of substance at all to win over these potential voters, the very voters who could earn him a landslide. Instead, they are simply harangued by party leaders, instructed to feel enthusiastic but given nothing to feel enthusiasm for. After all, these are the people Biden famously declared he has “no empathy” for…”

        Reply
        1. NotTimothyGeithner

          During the Women’s March was brunch canceled? The answer is no. Old dogs don’t learn new tricks, but this is just a game for too many people. They do that actually think about winning. With safe seats, the staffs of so many politicians don’t ever get tested.

          If they didn’t rethink after 2010, they are probably too entrenched to ever break loose. It’s like Carl Sagan’s line about bad ideas dying out, not being unlearned.

          Pelosi and Schumer took the energy from the Women’s March to boldly resist Trump by agreeing to build a slightly shorter border wall. Again, the Karens and the male equivalent in Team Blue are only going to miss so many brunches before they go to brunch.

          Reply
          1. CitizenSissy

            Gee, Tim, had to get past the misogyny to find the point with which I agree: DNC is totally useless. And many, many people are voting against Trump, and not for Biden.

            Regarding M4A, IHMO nothing’s going to happen until the employer class decides they want to offload medical benefits (which they should have done years ago).

            Reply
            1. NotTimothyGeithner

              Yeah, but the Women’s March didn’t affect anything in the long run. And Karens who went aren’t interested in assessing why Hillary or Team Blue loses because they only skipped lunch. It makes a difference.

              Reply
              1. CitizenSissy

                Did you follow the 2018 midterms? A number of the brunch-eating Karens were elected up and down ballots nationwide.

                Reply
                1. NotTimothyGeithner

                  Wow, and it only took Trump and a Republican congress and a demographic change after Pelosi pissed away the last majority.

                  Reply
            2. NotTimothyGeithner

              Gee, are you upset I demand accountability out of the Speaker? She’s not new at this. Pelosi has simply always been terrible. Stop giving these people passes.

              Besides if those Women’s March participants were simply putting the same effort on behalf of Biden right now instead of complaining, Biden would doing fine.

              Reply
            3. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

              Having destroyed lives with innuendo and served its purpose #MeToo sank beneath the waves never to be seen again in an era where the party of #MeToo courted a serial molester billionaire Wall St oligarch as a potential candidate and then selected a serial hair sniffer and fondler with very credible outstanding criminal sexual abuse accusations against him as their candidate.

              There are only two choices: either the movement believes in what it says and acts accordingly, or else it doesn’t.

              Reminds me of Gene Hackman in the film “Heist”:

              G: Are you going to kill me?

              Adversary: No.

              G: Then you oughtn’t point a gun at me. It’s insincere.

              Reply
        2. Acacia

          Delaware banks own Biden’s soul, so…. no debt jubilee is in the cards.

          It’ll be interesting to what lies he and Trump cook up during the debates.

          Reply
            1. NotTimothyGeithner

              I know what Biden could do. Denounce Pelosi’ “leadership” for failure to get the tax returns and if Neal wins call on him to resign for failure to hold Trump accountable. He doesn’t need to call Trump’s bluff.

              Reply
          1. Librarian Guy

            Nancy Pelosi has stated “no debate” between Biden and Trump, as that would “platform” DJT which he doesn’t deserve. I know that Pelosi doesn’t control the Biden campaign, but would assume since she’s gone public with this, and since they know that with even the best stimulants to maintain him, Joe has difficulty continuing a thought or sentence to its end, I think there will be NO Presidential debate this year.

            Not that between the dotard and the demented, such an event wouldn’t be Comedy Gold.

            Reply
            1. Pat

              If I am the Trump campaign I do a thirty minute infomercial about debating Joe Biden on the record. There are numerous videos of him saying hideous things. For instance support of Iraq. Trump draws a very big picture of the ultimate insider in Biden. Their differences, etc.
              I don’t know where I would put the video of Joe and the eo and noting this would get your kid expelled from college but he becomes Vice President… but let’s face it as devastating as anything Joe has said…especially after the celebrity college entrance hoopla.

              Reply
      5. trhys

        I suspect that if Biden suddenly came out unambiguously and with an actual plan for M4A, that he would suddenly be found to have a medical condition which would force him out of the contest. Kamala for President!

        Or he could pull an Obama after the election. After all, we’re broke. And campaign promises are just marketing.

        Reply
        1. NotTimothyGeithner

          The Boy Who Cried Wolf isnt just a lesson about lying but not tolerating liars in areas of responsibility.

          Like Hillary, Biden would have to sacrifice relationships. He would need to denounce someone, more than one, like Rahm Emmanuel and his crap views and politics. This is all they can to undone the damage. This would mean more than an empty promise.

          Reply
        2. John k

          He can’t. Saying it gives it credence and encourages the masses that support it. Plus pisses omg health ins and pharma, he wants those donations, both before and after the election.
          Trump is more free than Biden. If he came out for m4a, whether meaning it or not, dems would think he was hitting below the belt.
          So if either does it, IMO it’s trump.

          Reply
      6. John Wright

        Re: “All Biden has to do to win is come out full force for Medicare for All, but he can’t do that because he has taken so much money from the Health Care Industrial Complex that they own him”

        Biden can take a page from his former “boss” Obama and endorse Medicare for All to get elected and then slow walk it legislatively (after telling healthcare donors of the plan)

        This would be similar to what Obama did with NAFTA.

        From https://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/04/us/politics/04nafta.html

        “While campaigning in Ohio, Mr. Obama has harshly criticized the North American Free Trade Agreement, which many Ohioans blame for an exodus of jobs. He agreed last week at a debate with Senator Hillary Rodham Clinton that the United States should consider leaving the pact if it could not be renegotiated.

        “On Monday, a memorandum surfaced, obtained by The Associated Press, showing that Austan D. Goolsbee, a professor of economics at the University of Chicago who is Mr. Obama’s senior economic policy adviser, met officials last month at the Canadian consulate in Chicago.”

        “According to the writer of the memorandum, Joseph De Mora, a political and economic affairs consular officer, Professor Goolsbee assured them that Mr. Obama’s protectionist stand on the trail was “more reflective of political maneuvering than policy.”

        So Biden could talk up “Medicare for All” after he has properly conditioned his healthcare industry donors that it “won’t happen”.

        If the polls before the election are close, perhaps he will do this.

        Political history contains many examples of unmet promises/goals.

        Reply
      7. ewmayer

        “All Biden has to do to win” — And the reason Joe Biden is the nominee and getting all the fawning MSM coverage and support from the squillionaire elite-looter and rentier classes and the Big War creeps is because he can be relied on to never, ever, EVER support anything that does not directly benefit said constituencies.

        Reply
    3. anon in so cal

      That’s what the reprehensible Adam Schiff is doing—-ratcheting up the anti-Russia propaganda in order to win (didn’t quite overturn 2016)–even if it means the brainwashed will be demanding a nuclear first strike.

      Reply
  12. jr

    Re: Biden losing

    ” Then, on the burned-out streets, without a script, from the heart, Biden should speak to the city and the country”

    Is there another Biden running? Cause the last thing the Dems need is an unscripted Joe Biden babbling aimlessly in the middle of a war zone. Can you imagine?

    You ain’t black if you don’t stop destroying your own communities!

    Reply
    1. Pat

      If he flashes to an earlier time in his life more likely to be:

      We need stronger laws and harsher penalties for people like this that disrespect our communities and destroy businesses. If they had fathers and families it might be different, but they are now predators and should be treated as such.

      (I admit I would go back to church, if predator law and order Joe showed up flanked by Kamala Harris and James Clyburn who would be trying to shut him up.)

      Reply
      1. voteforno6

        Who’s doing the disrespecting? In many cases, the police are instigating the violence, and working in cahoots with the right wingers who show up to these protests. It would be refreshing if someone finally spoke the truth about the police.

        Reply
        1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

          2009: Occupy Wall St.

          Obama’s response: Crush it!

          2020: Occupy Main Street

          Obama/Dem response: Go For It!

          Reply
        2. Pat

          Never expect that from Biden. As a big supporter of the crime bill, and claimed authorship of part of the Patriot Act any support of the protesters should be taken with a grain of salt.

          Hence my more “honest” event description.

          Reply
      1. jr

        Oh yes, forgot about that. Apparently there is some truth to it but given Biden’s penchant for whoppers….although perhaps many of the L&O types would have preferred he had shot Corn Pop and his hoods dead instead, ala Bronson.

        His political career started in 1970 with his election to a Delaware county council, in’62 he was in school. I wonder if he had a political career in mind when he worked at the pool. Was it his version of “Teach for America”? Safari Joe? We may never know…

        Reply
    2. Pelham

      Packer notes in his article that “Senator Chris Murphy of Connecticut deleted a tweet saying that both the Blake shooting and the riots were wrong after commenters accused him of equating the two.”

      Then Packer goes on to suggest that if Biden goes to Kenosha he should meet with the Blake family and the people whose businesses were destroyed by the rioters and looters. But wouldn’t that be perceived as equating the two, as well? OTOH, Biden couldn’t very well go to Kenosha and not do both things.

      I’m befuddled but if anyone has a solution, I’ll gladly submit to defuddling.

      Reply
  13. Scott D

    A couple more things about cat vision. Their “refresh rate”, or the speed at which motion begins to smooth out, is much higher than ours. Cats (and your dog) would see old CRT TVs as a bright line moving down the screen, and today’s flat panels as a jerky images that don’t look real.

    When your cat is outside and it’s eye’s become slits, it causes a diffraction effect that makes vertical features (like grass) blur into a sort of background that makes it easier to see large things like prey or predators. Big cats don’t have this feature (probably because they are taller than the grass).

    Reply
  14. GramSci

    Re: In defense of looting:
    This:
    “When it comes to small business, family owned business or locally owned business, they are no more likely to provide worker protections. They are no more likely to have to provide good stuff for the community than big businesses. It’s actually a Republican myth that has, over the last 20 years, really crawled into even leftist discourse.”

    The local Chamber of Commerce is no friend of the people.

    Reply
    1. Chris

      Ah, didn’t realize that article was in links this AM. I had a bunch of friends sharing it yesterday and Friday. For all the times that I think the DNC are a bunch of master manipulators, to let something like this be published when theyre aggressively trying to court suburban property owners?

      Reply
      1. Carolinian

        So “Defense of Looting” is now a thing? I assumed Lambert put that in for us to take shots at–started to do so but then went “oh what’s the use?”

        If this is the field the left wants to die on then I guess we really are screwed.

        Reply
        1. Chris

          I don’t know. I really don’t.

          The article and the responses from the author seem more like someone is trolling the right and the left. Like the part where she says that the Korean shop owners were perpetrating white violence? It’s one of those times I really wish the people at NPR would have asked the next question. Because if all violence targeting black people regardless of source is white violence… what does that even mean? How can we as a society help or even mitigate that? The only position that can be taken to such an idea by non-black citizenry is opposition. It makes me wish more people listened to Adolph Reed and his take in racial nihilism. If we submit to the idea that this is baked in and unchangeable then there is no hope of it ever getting better. I refuse to believe that.

          Reply
        2. martell

          Nice to see NPR admit that looting has been happening. As for the content of the article, I confess I couldn’t make it all the way through. The author of the defense argues that looting is a sound tactic because of its pedagogical value: it shows that, without the police and state oppression, we can have stuff for free (this is almost verbatim). And looting that is somehow or other associated with BLM is especially recommended, since looting attacks “the idea of property” and property in the US derives from “whiteness.” So, looting attacks whiteness. That’s a wonderfully clarifying expression of the ideology, I think. Does a great job of displaying several aspects of racist thought. But I felt as though I didn’t really need to read any more of the interview at that point.

          Reply
        3. Wukchumni

          I could see a scenario where once given their freedom to not live in an apartment or house, those evicted decide to start looting en masse, and where it would have the greatest affect would be supermarkets, and what sort of urge to restock and/or rebuild a damaged building would there be in it’s aftermath?

          This would add greatly to food insecurity…

          Reply
        4. bassmule

          I posted this yesterday. I feel compelled to repost.

          Ladies and gentleman, I give you Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, April 12, 2003:

          “Freedom’s untidy, and free people are free to make mistakes and commit crimes and do bad things,” Rumsfeld said. “They’re also free to live their lives and do wonderful things. And that’s what’s going to happen here.”

          Looting, he added, was not uncommon for countries that experience significant social upheaval. “Stuff happens,” Rumsfeld said.

          “Very often the pictures are pictures of people going into the symbols of the regime, into the palaces, into the boats and into the Baath Party headquarters and into the places that have been part of that repression,” Rumsfeld said. “And while no one condones looting, on the other hand one can understand the pent-up feelings that may result from decades of repression and people who’ve had members of their family killed by that regime, for them to be taking their feelings out on that regime.”

          Reply
          1. Carolinian

            Then he and Bush killed maybe a million people during all that liberating anarchy. You are endorsing Rumsfeld?

            Or perhaps offering some whataboutism. Which is fine, but inconsistency among the Repubs does not bail out the Dems on this one. It doesn’t matter what I think, but if the Dems want to win they better worry about what the public thinks.

            Reply
            1. ambrit

              The Obama “Night of the Long Knives” pretty much proved out that this Democrat Party doesn’t give a ‘f— all’ about what the public thinks. I am convinced that the Duopoly nomenklatura really believes that the public will believe what they are told to believe.
              This Election Cycle is a massive demonstration of Elite Hubris.
              My money’s on Nemesis by a length (of rope.)

              Reply
              1. jr

                “Nemesis, winged tilter of scales and lives,
                Immortal Judge! I sing Your song,
                Almighty Triumph on proud-spread wings,
                Lieutenant of fairness, Requiter of wrongs.
                Despise the lordly with all Your art
                And lay them low in the Netherdark ”

                Hymn to Nemesis
                By Mesomedes of Crete

                Reply
        5. Darthbobber

          “In defense of looting” will presumably make a nice chunk of change for it’s author, but other than that it doesn’t do a lot.

          Blathering on about something as a “tactic” seems to be quite common, but of course it assumes what is to be proven, namely that this is a tactic at all and not a purely opportunistic thing for people largely uninvolved in anything else.

          A “tactical” discussion, unless one is engaged in a training exercise, also means next to nothing in the absence of a strategy within which the tactics fit and a desired objective which the strategy is intended to bring about.

          What I would take to be the only point of a “tactical” discussion, which is to evaluate whether deploying one or another will or will not contribute to the desired goal within a given context, seems to be generally avoided as if irrelevant.

          Reply
        6. Aumua

          The Sublime song laid out the justification for looting pretty well: We’re poor, we’re angry, we’re fed up and we’re going to take this opportunity to get our comeuppance.

          This is a perfectly valid defense. No other mental gymnastics are needed.

          Reply
          1. pjay

            “Get our comeuppance” against whom? Those *responsible* for their being poor, angry, and fed up? If so, hey, count me in. Unfortunately, that rarely happens. Defending collateral damage to those not responsible because “the end justifies the means” is the worst type of mental gymnastics.

            Reply
          2. Carolinian

            So the store owner made you poor, angry, fed up? Your validity only works if you can concoct a theory of blame.

            Reply
          3. Aumua

            No, it’s anger, frustration and wanting to get some nice sh*t. That’s it, no theory or philosophy is needed.

            Reply
          4. occasional anonymous

            That stupid song actually starts out making a good point by providing the wider context (‘this isn’t about Rodney King’), but then undermines it all by admitting that looters are just hitting places because they want free stuff (booze, furniture). It’s basically a lumpenproletariat anthem, and isn’t something to praise.

            Reply
      2. pjay

        This is even worse than White Fragility. Every bias-confirming argument and rationalizing cliche in the world is in this interview. I won’t go into the author’s bio (the interviewee, Vicki Osterweil), but it is even more perfect for use by Trumpian right-wing defenders of mom-and-pop communities. GOD! Is this clueless idiocy? Or is Osterweil some sort of “antifa” mirror image of the boogaloo boys who wants to make things worse (only part sarcasm here)?

        I’ve been a lefty my entire adult life, and an activist in my younger days. But I’m also the son of a small town businessman. My father grew up poor with many disadvantages, worked his butt off, and gradually grew a successful business. He always treated people fairly and was well-respected in the community. He treated his few employees like family (they were working alongside family members). He was never rich, but he was proud of his achievement and was able to put three children through college. While college opened my eyes and radicalized me in many ways, because of the example of my father I could never fully fall for the type of irresponsible rhetoric that this exemplifies. He would *not* have been the enemy on this issue.

        If people think this sort of “enlightened” discourse will actually *help* anything, they are beyond delusional.

        Reply
    2. Billy

      It behooves readers of progressive publications like the Intercept
      The Thin Blue Line Between Violent, Pro-Trump Militias and Police
      to see how the other side views things, unless of course, one is closeminded and only myopically follows comforting people who already agree with them. “Hillary will win without a doubt”.

      One has to be familiar with the other side to counter them.

      https://www.thegatewaypundit.com/2020/08/kyle-rittenhouse-working-lifeguard-kenosha-day-shooting-went-clean-vandalism-school-work/

      “after Kyle finished his work that day as a community lifeguard in Kenosha, he wanted to help clean up some of the damage, so he and a friend went to the local public high school to remove graffiti by rioters.
      Additionally, the weapon Rittenhouse was using to protect himself and others never crossed state lines.”

      Reply
      1. Riverboat Grambler

        Cleaning up graffiti doesn’t absolve someone of murder. It’s completely irrelevant, and basically the inverse of the “he was no angel” rhetoric deployed against black murder victims.

        The weapon he used “to protect himself and others” was used to kill two people and maim another. Haven’t heard evidence of it being used in self-defense, not even in an arguable sense. Not sure how the gun crossing state lines or not is relevant either. Also is it legal for a minor to own that kind of rifle?

        I realize that posting this is about engaging with the opposing side’s stance and I agree that that is healthy, but I don’t find any of these details very compelling.

        Reply
        1. Carolinian

          I’m not a lawyer but he was being chased by people with one of them–perhaps the one he shot and only wounded–firing a gun as seen in the video described by the NY Times. You do need a permit for a concealed weapon but apparently not for an openly carried long gun. As for the vigilante impulse that put him there in the first place, there’s a lot of that going around including the protests themselves which typically assume full knowledge of the incidents in question based on cellphone videos.

          In any case sounds like in this instance videos may serve as a partial defense.

          Other thought–unwise to chase people with assault weapons unless they are actually attacking you.

          Reply
    3. Pelham

      True. But also largely irrelevant.

      Many years ago when a Walmart came to my town in Kansas, people who were working at Main Street stores rushed to the new Walmart to apply for jobs. The reason: Walmart paid slightly more and, I believe, offered at least a shot a health insurance. Plus the workers would be “associates,” whatever that means.

      But Main Street stores could ill afford to pay these people any more than they were already making. They couldn’t respond with higher wages because they couldn’t afford it. Keeping a small business going is generally a really tough, time-consuming proposition. Walmart had huge advantages. So Main Street withered and died. And the town, until the 1970s one of the more prosperous in Kansas, is now the poorest in the state (although there were other devastating reasons for much of that decline).

      The local Chamber of Commerce, of course, was never any friend of these employees. No doubt. But that wasn’t the essential problem, and now the modest income generated by those Main Street businesses that once circulated locally is siphoned off to Bentonville.

      Reply
      1. Carolinian

        In my town the big box trend was well underway long before Walmart showed up. We had Kmart and various other brands including, not far, a Woolco which was owned by one of those “small” businesses (Woolworth–they had a large skyscraper in lower Manhattan) that dominated our downtown and could afford the high downtown rent. Which is to say Walmart was only the culmination of a trend and it’s success arguably a result of giving the public what they wanted whether or not they should have wanted it.

        Ironically by going after these national chains the looters merely make the point. When they take status goods like Air Jordans or iPads are they attacking capitalism or endorsing it? Common sense says the latter, which is why the authenticity of what is happening–certainly if framed as a “revolution”–seems dubious. Anarchy is not liberty and certainly not justice. As we’ve seen the victims and villains often don’t fit the script.

        Reply
        1. Carolinus

          I would propose another option to attacking capitalism or endorsing it- how about sick with it? Or even sick of it? Looters surely aren’t monolithic…

          Reply
      2. jr

        A common tactic, I’ve read, and one I’ve seen play out is for Walmart to open say two stores in a small county. When the local shops are dead, shut one down and now everyone has to go to the remaining store. This happened to a small town I lived in in central PA years ago.

        Same with the pharmacy. Walgreens came in and crushed the local cluster of towns age old pharmacy then shut down and opened a new store more central to other, bigger towns. This was a disaster for the towns resident, many of whom were elderly and/or mentally ill due to the presence of a nearby state mental institution. Whereas they had walked, biked, or drove 10 minutes to get meds prior to this, it was now around 20+ minutes to drive to the newer store.

        Reply
        1. Jason Boxman

          When I learned of MMT here a decade ago, and money flows, I realized that basically this is all domestic colonialism, whereby large businesses come into an area, destroy any local competition, and then siphon off all profits outside the community. At which point there quite literally is insufficient money in the community to provide a standard of living or public services or allow any kind of local investment. (And with local banks mostly gone, how does one fund any business ventures anyway?) ((And granted even communities with money don’t necessarily provide for the public commons — the NYC subway failing apart or Boston’s MBTA for example –, but that’s a different issue.))

          Reply
          1. Yves Smith

            Please stop this. Just about everything you say on this topic is wrong and I don’t have the energy to debunk it. I’m going to have to stop approving comments like these because your fundamental misunderstanding amounts to agnotology, a violation of written site Policies.

            Reply
        1. pjay

          I’m unclear on your statement here. Are you dismayed because looting is unpopular among the general public? If so, is this because we should actually be “defending” it? Or are you dismayed that it is getting too much attention in the media (and therefore detracting from the more important issue of police violence)?

          The local Chamber of Commerce is not usually my friend. But a number of small business people are. All are suffering economically, none are racist. Is my white fragility the reason that I would not want to see them burned out? Would they be acceptable collateral damage for a more noble cause?

          Reply
  15. The Rev Kev

    “Republicans Run Toward Their Base. Democrats Run Away From Theirs.”

    ‘While conservative politicians are pulled ever rightward by an increasingly radicalized fringe, liberal elites try (and generally succeed) to discipline their base into accepting a message manifestly crafted for someone else’s consumption.’

    I seriously have no idea what Jacobi is talking about here. It is conservative politicians that push their voters towards the right where they are waiting. And in this election it is the liberal elites that are trying to radicalize their base and outflank the Republicans from the right itself. I made a joke some time ago about how the two main parties will combine one big party ‘as they have the same policies anyway’ and it looks like that this may actually happen one day.

    Reply
    1. Pelham

      You have a point, but I also see the point in the Jacobin piece.

      Re that article, note the understandable vilifying descriptions of the Republican base followed by neutral language describing the Dem base. Why must this be done? I watched a bit of the RNC and was alternately appalled and favorably impressed by the speakers, many of which were owners of small businesses or working people who were decidedly not suggestive of right-wing nuttiness. Is not possible for progressives and left-populists to acknowledge some measure of merit in many of Trump’s supporters?

      On the other hand, we’re led to believe that the polyglot of the Dem base is made up entirely of momma’s perfect angels. (Except perhaps for the so-called Bernie bros, but that’s a separate matter.) We see something of the same dynamic at work with the widespread knee-jerk left defense of protesters/rioters/looters and vilification of police and military, who after all are basically the blue-collar, non-college working stiffs that the left once stood for.

      Reply
    2. John k

      That’s the problem with third party, or even taking over the greens, if you get beg enough to be a threat the two biggies will merge. Hard as it is, it’s easier to first take over the dems, than take on the reps.

      Reply
  16. integer

    Black man ‘stabbed AutoZone employee because he felt the need to find a white male to kill after watching videos of police brutality’ Daily Mail

    • Jayvon Hatchett, 19, allegedly attacked the AutoZone worker on August 25
    • He walked into the store and stabbed him seven times, then ran away
    • Police say Hatchett told them he ‘felt the need to find a white male to kill’
    • He said he’d been watching Facebook videos of police brutality before the attack
    • Hatchett is charged with aggravated assault and possession of a weapon
    • He was on bail after charges three days earlier of criminal property damage

    I guess the score is now 2-all. All White so far, interestingly enough.

    Reply
  17. Chris

    I thought this was a good article. Very much another “two realities” arrangement developing now. Based on my travels to places other than NYC, DC, etc., I feel like I’m seeing all the same things I saw in 2016. My friends in DC still can’t conceive of a world where Trump can win. Even though the world we live has already produced that result.

    I think the author is right that what has happened is so many people are seeing that the Wokester-Team Blue No Matter Who democrats are aligned with BLM that they’re recoiling from the Dems.

    Reply
    1. Louis Fyne

      i am truly amazed that 12 years after the housing bust, 17 years after Iraq War 2, it’s the (rebooted) GOP that has/will benefited the most.

      the woke and the media are Trump’s best promoters, they are just too smug to realize it.

      Reply
      1. neo-realist

        The unwoke and the delusional who think Trump has kept his promises, who don’t see cause and effect, e.g., systemic police violence against unarmed blacks ——> protests and violence, and don’t believe he will undertake measures to cut programs they could benefit and survive on (SS and Medicare) are also helping him and the GOP.

        Reply
    2. jr

      From the snatches of conversation I’ve picked up around the Village in the last few months, a lot of PMC types are assuming Trump will lose. Also, not since W’s second term have I had so many people out and out ask who I’m voting for.

      Reply
    3. LawnDart

      Duck-rabbit was a good find, thank you for that.

      As the author points out, November will not see the end of the culture wars. I think that if it’s a contested election things will get really ugly, but it might mean the end of the democrat party as we know it, and that would be a good thing.

      I found this earlier today, a writer making the argument that progressives should vote for their enemy (Joe Biden) because…

      At least it registers with some democrat apologists that their candidate is widely despised. Nice writing, but the ultimate argument is crap.

      https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/elections-voting-enemy-200829135208470.html

      Reply
      1. Chris

        Also, for your consideration, this report from the Guardian.

        This is one of those cases where even if I have sympathies for the BLM protesters, the portrayal here seems wrong. I wonder if the reporter even believes what they wrote?

        Here’s what I see in the article…a bunch of citizens drove through the street of a major US city exercising their first amendment rights, and were attacked and illegally blocked in the street. They retaliated in non-leathal ways when threatened. Later on, one of their members is reportedly shot dead. Trump is offering to send in the National Guard if requested by the governor, but the governor has responded to the offer with allegations that don’t pertain to the situation at hand and also do nothing to help promote the security and safety of Portland residents.

        I feel confident that is how this episode will sound to Republicans and the much desired suburban security folks that Team Blue seems to be spasmodically courting in lieu of the Left. It’s like the media is completely headblind to any alternate point of view. You would have thought that kind of coverage would be corrected or at least limited after 2016. Apparently not. Everytime they run articles like this and say that Trump is currently president during a time when chaos is occurring, Trump gets to respond with “I tried to help and you wouldn’t let me.”

        Meanwhile, Biden keeps hiding in his basement hoping to be overtaken by events so that he doesn’t have to make any real decisions or statements about the violence. His handlers no doubt want him to stay silent because if he speaks about it his past record suggests he’d agree with the President.. Liberal aligned reporters can’t carry his water in a bucket with that many holes.

        What a disaster.

        Reply
  18. Wukchumni

    California’s secret fire: Navy dodges questions about 80,000-acre blaze Daily Press
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Interesting story, and i’m somewhat amazed that a conflagration could get that huge in what is largely scrub desert with not a lot to burn.

    My only interaction with the China Lake base is the fighter jets that emanate from it and buzz us in very low altitude sorties @ Saline Valley hot springs. The last time we were there, an F-18 flew 100 feet over where we were camped @ around 550 mph.

    For what it’s worth, i’ve never seen a F-35 in maybe 200 overflights we’ve witnessed.

    Reply
  19. Olga

    China’s rise: why US advocacy for confrontation leaves Asia cold South China Morning Post.
    Nice to see a more balanced report about China. Seems at least some Asians understand that they’d just be pawns for a certain empire. And is it true that Australians now also see which side their bread is buttered?
    At Saker, Pepe E has an interesting take on Chinese developments:
    “Comparing China’s economic velocity now with the US is like comparing a Maserati Gran Turismo Sport (with a V8 Ferrari engine) with a Toyota Camry. China, proportionately, holds a larger reservoir of very well educated young generations; an accelerated rural-urban migration; increased poverty eradication; more savings; a cultural sense of deferred gratification; more – Confucianist – social discipline; and infinitely more respect for the rationally educated mind. The process of China increasingly trading with itself will be more than enough to keep the necessary sustainable development momentum going.”
    In the meantime, the US is saddling its young generation with debt…
    I know some think PE is too optimistic about China, but I believe his long-term assessment is generally correct.
    As for border disputes, India has them with almost all of its neighbours, and who can skip Thai/Cambodia dispute? Afghanistan never officially recognised the Durand line. (many of the disputes have roots in the colonial times, courtesy of the clever Europeans.) For more:
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_territorial_disputes#Asia

    Reply
    1. The Rev Kev

      I think that a clarifying tweet is the one below the article where it says ‘China shares over 22,000km of border with 14 nations.’ However much neocons like Pompeo try to push those 14 nations to get into China’s face, I think that all of them recognize the fact that the US has 0 kms of shared borders with China. That makes a difference that.

      Reply
      1. Oh

        The neocons want the other nations to spend blood and treasure so the US can sell them weapons but when they need the US, it won’t be there for them.

        Reply
    2. a different chris

      >“Comparing China’s economic velocity now with the US is like comparing a Maserati Gran Turismo Sport (with a V8 Ferrari engine) with a Toyota Camry.

      Huh? Since you don’t give me a link I have to suppose since:

      Camrys are reliable, can be got with 301 horsepower so quick enough for sure. They run for 200k miles without much attention at all.

      Maseratis are usually something you speak about in awe but in reality can’t get out of the garage when you need a gallon of milk. And can’t carry much more even if you do make it to the grocer’s and back. A tuneup alone is thousands of dollars. And you’re happy if that’s all it needs.

      So if China is the Camry and the US is a Maserati, yes that is a pretty good analogy.

      (the more I think about it, the more I think a Maserati is a really perfect analog of our military)

      Reply
    3. Anon II, First of the Name

      There are so many thoughts in your post that are so incredibly outright wrong that it is difficult to even know where to begin. However, let’s start with this one:

      The process of China increasingly trading with itself will be more than enough to keep the necessary sustainable development momentum going.

      China has been talking about reducing its highly unhealthy dependence on exports to the West (and especially the US) for over a decade now (see Wen Jiabao’s “Four Uns”, for example). If it is so easy to do, then why has the country not done so yet?

      Reply
  20. Chris

    Here’s another article that describes attitudes which will no doubt become an albatross around the Dems neck this election. It’s almost as if the Republican party dreamed up a caricature liberal target to right a book to scare the suburban people the DNC has been listing after for so long. My friends who are very aware of self defense issues were spreading this around all day yesterday and Friday. I can imagine the people who own small businesses reading this and feeling very grim about their future prospects.

    The part I found most disturbing was the author’s assertion here:

    Ultimately, what nonviolence ends up meaning is that the activist doesn’t do anything that makes them feel violent. And I think getting free is messier than that. We have to be willing to do things that scare us and that we wouldn’t do in normal, “peaceful” times, because we need to get free.

    That is a standard that will lead to very bad consequences if widely adopted. If I have successfully “othered” a person then there is no limit to what I might feel is OK to do to them using this standard.

    Reply
    1. pjay

      “It’s almost as if the Republican party dreamed up a caricature liberal target to right a book to scare the suburban people the DNC has been listing after for so long.”

      I know that you know now this was posted in today’s Links and discussed above. But I wanted to highlight your comment here. Very true. And thanks, NPR, for amplifying this courageous advocate of “getting free.” It might scare us to throw gasoline on a roaring fire in normal, “peaceful” times, but…

      Reply
      1. Chris

        I did try to delete it once I saw it was already available in Links. It’s hard to beat the editors here for their breadth and scope on most days. And on any day before I’ve had my first cup of coffee :p

        I’ve heard from a number of my BLM aligned friends that this is an extreme minority view…and yet. When I turn on the news and see the rioting and the chaos I see people who clearly agree with looting in principle. I see CNN say lunatic things like “fiery but peaceful” protests are occurring while buildings blaze in the background. These people can’t be that stupid. They have to know how this looks. But I really did think they were going to dump Biden at the convention so what do I know?

        Reply
  21. Wukchumni

    Conversely, firearm and ammunition sales tend to lag when the threat of new gun laws is low. “When President Trump got in, he’s a friend of the gun industry, and sales went flat,” Ionadi said. “There wasn’t fear of anything being taken away.”

    Totally true. Until Covid hit the locked glass ammo cases @ Wal*Mart were chock-a-block full of every caliber, in fact at the W*M I frequent there was much more ammunition in stock, than their selection of books.

    This has reversed itself, and when I looked the other day, it was back down to around 15% full, with odd calibers that few are interested in buying.

    I wonder how the world will view us when we turn into a de facto shooting gallery, why would they want to continue having the almighty American $ be the world’s reserve currency, and oh yes we can pump out tremendous quantities via a revised Military Monetary Theory more geared to the public’s needs, but in the end, there is no free lunch once the shat hit the fan, or innocent bystander.

    Reply
    1. Tom Bradford

      I wonder how the world will view us when we turn into a de facto shooting gallery,

      Best thing on TV for years.

      Reply
  22. Billy

    Trump, Populism, and the Suburbs

    Looks like the elite have unleashed their stenographers:

    “This New Urbanism series is supported by the Richard H. Driehaus Foundation.”

    Richard H. Driehaus
    Career History
    Driehaus Private Equity
    01/2011–PRESENT
    Chairman/President/Founder
    Driehaus Mutual Funds
    01/1996–PRESENT
    Chairman/Chief Invsmt Ofcr/Founder
    Driehaus Capital Mgmt Inc

    Reply
    1. hamstak

      Anymore, when I see Foundation in the name of any organization I head post-haste in the opposite direction. The “found” in Foundation seems to refer to found money.

      Reply
  23. The Rev Kev

    “California’s secret fire: Navy dodges questions about 80,000-acre blaze”

    If the people on that base are so secretive about a run of the mill blaze, then you can count on them to be that secretive and more if there was a serious outbreak of Coronavirus on that base. The problem is that you may have people going from that base into the local communities and who would keep mum on that little detail.

    Reply
  24. Louis Fyne

    that NYT on Facebook article….

    OMG, the (woke) left and media are truly a lost cause if they need a Times article to give them enough self-awareness that there is a world beyond their bicoastal, Twitter, MSNBC-CNN bubble.

    need an update to that 70’s New Yorker cartoon about the world ending3 at the Hudson River for Manhattanites

    Reply
    1. jr

      Manhattanites think the world ends at the Hudson because the world comes here. When I worked across town, I would easily hear five to six languages including at least two African tongues on my walk.

      Here’s a more specific example. I’ve mentioned on NC: I am looking for lagochilus inebriens (inebriating (not a true mint) mint) seeds or plants. It’s nearly impossible to find them in the States, I know of two people with seedlings and apparently the things are hard as hell to raise.

      So I’m literally looking up botanical gardens in the plants native Uzbekistan. I’m going to call both of them this week. Then the unis.

      At coffee two days ago, I mention this to my buddy. This is the construction team leader who fills me in on the sales of luxury apartments. The 9M$ ones filled with rich whack-os.

      He says he will ask around at work. I’m like I dunno, these plants are rare. He says oh no, half the work crew is from Uzbekistan. He’ll ask around.

      It’s still a long shot but I am going to thank NYC to tonight. I think of her as a goddess (NYC is of course fluid so pick any gender configuration you like.) She looks after you if you put in the time and effort to try to dance and wail in this Temple.

      Or she smashes you to dust. Or she yanks you up and down like a marionette in the hands if a chronic masturbator. As she did me, and may do again. But the Thai place across the street has these vege chive dumplings bro….

      So yes, some of the dimmer Manhattanites think of us as a small island nation off of the coast of the US. But I tell you sir, it is an easy illusion to fall into. You can’t know till you live here for some length of time.

      Reply
    2. voteforno6

      Unfortunately that isn’t the only bubble out there – have you ever tried talking to a Trump supporter about, well, anything? It seems that we get to choose between two reality-defying bubbles.

      Reply
    1. dougie

      Indeed it is!

      It gave me my thought for the day(and maybe longer)..” Nothing makes the human mind recoil like learning that the things we hold dear- the patterns and behaviors that dominate our lives- are ARBITRARY.” Caps are mine.

      And it’s a good thing…… My previous thought for the day, upon seeing the wannabe Brownshirts driving through the streets of Portland overnight, was to tell my wife, “I’m DONE. Your choice, Italy or Scotland, as soon as they will have us!”

      Reply
    2. Susan the other

      If Warren Mosler is correct and the Fed is accepting MMT (because it has no choice as far as I can tell) then: The “Money Markets” that have grown exponentially in the last 20 years are in big trouble. Especially if they also lose their hookers in congress. Tsk tsk. Maybe, because of German phobias about inflation, the EU has decided to spend money – borrowed from the “money markets.” That’s all they can do because their politics is still haywire and they have no taxing authority. It’s probably Darwinian. But clearly the biggest danger from MMT is that it will make the institution of “money markets” irrelevant for direct government spending. Hanging on to that privilege of loaning money to governments (buying their treasuries) would seem to be absolutely existentially essential for them. Even George Soros has been nervously advocating zero-interest bonds – perpetual bonds that never pay back the principal, just the interest. What’s a poor billionaire to do? Well, we could tax them to pay for every college education in America forever. Or every medical treatment. Or whatever. It’s all arbitrary. Right?

      Reply
  25. Wukchumni

    One Dead After Shooting During Pro-Trump Rally in Portland Portland Mercury
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Splashy lead article in the trashy Daily Mail:

    “MAGA GETS A MARTYR”

    Oddly enough when the murderer killed 2 in Kenosha, BLM didn’t get bupkis.

    Reply
  26. Wukchumni

    A somewhat sloppy large sticker was placed over the previous pickup times on the drop off drive through mailbox at my post office.

    Gone are twice daily pickups, now just one @ 2:30 pm.

    Reply
    1. ambrit

      Oh boy. This is the neo-liberal playbook at ‘work.’
      Here in the NADS, the inter facility mail haulers were semi-privatized years ago. The “vendor” is a contract player in this ‘service’ sector. He or she makes their trip across the veldt once a day. The diminution of pickup times is strictly internal to the stations. It means that more labour “hours” can be cut.
      What I don’t understand is why, after suffering through the slow grinding down over the last few decades, that the Unions don’t finally say that enough is enough and strike. (To H— with “public servants can’t strike” clauses. The old Unions made their advances by exactly breaking the “rules” of the time.)
      After the USPS has been ‘drowned in the bathtub,” then we’ll have the dreaded Carrington Event II. Watch the “economy” scramble without either snail mail or electronica.
      Since it looks like HRH HRC is not running this cycle, I will turn my attentions to the Tag Team from H—.
      Cthulhu/Giant Asteroid 2020!
      I@! I@! Cthulhu Fhtagn!

      Reply
        1. ambrit

          Ouch! Mommy spank!
          (Are the Collins ‘twins’ still around?)
          [I wonder if that could have been the name used on the ‘Lolita Express’ for the computerized management program? “Alexis, drop a Mickey in Sissy’s drink.”]

          Reply
  27. marym

    More on Portland caravan

    NYT reporter – thread includes trigger warning for links to graphic images
    https://twitter.com/ByMikeBaker/status/1299841292466176000
    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/08/30/us/portland-trump-rally-shooting.html

    OPB reporter
    https://twitter.com/MrOlmos/status/1299852672606978048
    https://www.opb.org/article/2020/08/30/portland-trump-cruise-rally-protest-rogue-river-pendleton/

    Trump calling the caravan “patriots” today
    Actual tweet https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/1300019849540886528
    Screen shot https://twitter.com/MollyJongFast/status/1300053803891331078/photo/1

    Reply
      1. mnm

        Elderly man trying to put out fire in store beaten by mob. Man pulled from car beaten by mob. Police locked in station by protestors and then building set on fire. White tween girl sitting at a train station punched in head repeatedly by mob. There is more, but you will need to stop reading MSM to find it.
        The real question is why Obama/Biden put the beatdown on occupy (peaceful protests), while encouraging BLM/Antifa (riots).

        Reply
        1. Aumua

          Believe me, I know exactly where you can find such lists of horrors to freak out over. What gets me is how some people can (rightly) question the MSM narratives, and yet they lap up these alt-stream narratives like they are God’s given truth, with no critical filter whatsoever. I don’t have have time to go through and address your list on a case to case basis. Suffice it to say that whatever the angry mob did or didn’t do for whatever reasons, it doesn’t change my explanation for why the Trumpies are there.

          Reply
          1. integer

            Some of us just watch the video evidence and make up our own minds. Plenty to see from all sides if you look at #blm on Twitter.

            Reply
          2. Aumua

            Sometimes my conclusions happen to coincide even with the mainstream narratives much to my chagrin, believe me.

            Reply
        2. marym

          There’s no such thing as “BLM/Antifa (riots).” Conflating them into a single phrase doesn’t make it true. Establishment Dem politicians who express some sympathy with issues raised by peaceful BLM protests also regularly condemn violence against people and property. It’s not useful to the critique of Democrats, from the right or the left, to pick a topic that isn’t true.

          https://www.cnbc.com/2020/08/26/biden-says-he-talked-to-jacob-blake-family-condemns-violence-in-kenosha.html
          https://medium.com/@JoeBiden/we-are-a-nation-furious-at-injustice-9dcffd81978f

          Reply
  28. The Rev Kev

    “Brexit ho: Tony Abbott’s trade deal role’

    It wasn’t enough that Australia gave the world Rupert Murdoch, we now send out Tony Abbott. But then again he was born in London and is a monarchist so he should fit in with Conservative politics in the UK. And he is a neocon to boot. I suppose that he is following Tony Blair’s example and is looking for lucrative employment in the UK and Europe and he almost makes Scotty from Marketing look good. But only a Boris Johnson would think it a good idea to actually hire him.

    Reply
  29. The Rev Kev

    “The Census Scales Back A Critical Step: Checking Its Own Work”

    This is actually a big deal that will have all sorts of repercussions. I have spent time researching distant family in America and one of the most valuable resources for America is the US Census records. They provide a wealth of data and go up to the 1940 US census records and hopefully the 1950 US Census will come online before too long. The only real hole is the 1890 US Census which was lost to a major fire. But the way things are going, the 2020 US Census will have all sorts of problems with it and I don’t believe that they will be counting non-citizens. For future historian it will prove to be a major setback in research that can never be remedied. What a mess.

    https://www.ancestry.com/search/categories/usfedcen/

    Reply
    1. Jason Boxman

      Indeed, the failure of this centennial census is going to be a disaster. We’ll be reading about and experiencing the second and third order effects from this for decades to come.

      Reply
  30. divadab

    Re: “Only five states making use of Trump’s expanded unemployment benefits”

    Article appears to be inaccurate – the Washington State Employment Security Department informed people receiving UI benefits the State had applied for the program in an email August 21; and then that the State been approved for the Trump executive order expanded unemployment benefits August 27th.

    The Hill as unreliable as the MSM, apparently.

    Reply
    1. judy2shoes

      I wonder if the criteria The Hill is using to determine which states are making use of the expanded benefits is whether or not the state is actually paying the expanded benefits currently. WA ESD posted on their website that their application was approved August 24 and that “We are evaluating how to implement this new program and will share a timeline for when payments will be available as soon as possible.”

      So, no monies being paid out yet.

      Reply
  31. blowncue

    I just need to get this out of my system: as the treasurer of the LGBA (T,I,Q would be added later) at UMASS Amherst, with time spent running with ACT-UP and Queer Nation, the argument that the Alex Morse attack ad is homophobic is absolute garbage.

    Morse abused his position afforded to him by his employer. He violated the boundaries that he was charged to recognize, maintain, and model between teacher and student. His behavior was predatory.

    It is not homophobic to call out moral turpitude. Others will disagree but I would book him for being a chicken hawk. To be 18 or 19 is not to be 15 but it isn’t 25, either. Not every queer youth goes to high school that looks and sounds like Glee. Many queer youth arrive at college with serious ground to cover in regards to developing a positive self-concept.

    Reply
    1. divadab

      So what, in your opinion, should the age of consent be? 30? 40? This whole smear campaign is based on consenting adult private behavior, and no one is alleging Mr. Morse acted inappropriately with any of his students, nor that he in any way contravened his employer’s code of conduct.

      Your claim is assertion of your own opinion as fact. DO you know the difference between fact and opinion? I think not.

      Reply
    2. ForFawkesSakes

      He didn’t have intimate relationships with HIS students. How many times does this need to be said? If you are as active as you attest, are you comfortable with a candidate’s sexuality being weaponized? How do you feel hearing the endless homophobia from Team Blue since Trump’s victory? Do you endorse terms like “Putin’s butt boy” deployed against a President who has many actual points of attack, based upon his corruption or his dishonesty?

      You may be an activist, but you don’t speak for this gay man. I am appalled at how homosexuality has been the point of attack by Neal’s proxies, citing an abuse of power. How very Republican, to clutch your pearls over sex between consenting adults. I don’t feel comfortable in a party who is this hypocritical and downright mean, while screeching “Won’t somebody think of the children?”

      I have to ask, what’s the point of your activism? Are you *doing* anything or just finding sponsors for Pride? I think you’ve forgotten the point of activism: to educate and uplift our community. Morse is an absolute miracle, for his generation and for OUR community. I ask you, please, if you’re not in support of him, what do you want in a candidate? What’s so inspiring about Neal that you’d buy in to this homophobic witch hunt? Do you serve because you’re called to? Or does this just look good on your CV?

      Reply
    3. blowncue

      I should qualify that UMass Amherst bars teachers from having relationships with students who they teach or advise, not students in general. Morse has not been accused of the former.

      From The Intercept, 8/12/2020:

      Morse, who was an adjunct professor at UMass Amherst until the fall of 2019, has acknowledged having consensual relationships with students but has said that he has never had an inappropriate relationship with a student of his, and no such allegations have been made.

      He started teaching one class a semester in the fall of 2014, when he was 25, and taught his last class in the fall of 2019 (Intercept, 8/12/2020).

      It’s clear that Timothy Ennis, and possibly Andrew Abramson, both leaders of the UMass College Democrats, sought to entrap Morse, per The Intercept 8/12/20 article. Morse contacts Abramson on Instagram after appearing on a panel with him at an event attended by Markey and Neal, to say “it was a pleasure meeting” according to the article:

      After Ennis concluded the chats with Abramson would sink Morse’s campaign, the conversation between Morse and Abramson continued for another several weeks.

      So, one can argue that we are in DeLorean-cocaine territory.

      I would say: he’s on the record as having slept with students, and he could have kept the Instagram contact to a single contact, inquired as to the student’s academic plans, professional aspirations.

      It’s not homophobic to call him out for having had sexual relationships with students, if he had sexual relationships with students. I think his behavior constitutes moral turpitude, even if UMass does not – and frankly, I think UMass draws the line too narrowly.

      Reply
      1. blowncue

        My reply is awaiting moderation, but short answer: no. I am not hustling for a political internship, nor am I hawking 100% orange juice. I am over 50 years old, a bean counter, not residing in Massachusetts. Hopefully my reply will be published.

        Reply
        1. urblintz

          I am 64 years old. I lived with my partner (who died of AIDS in 1996) in Manhattan and we were active with ACT-UP from the start. Your “queer” bona-fides do not impress me. “Moral terpitude” “predatory” “chicken hawk” were and remain classic homophobic tropes to generate fear and to diminish the crisis. I can guarantee that had you been throwing such language around then you’d have been shown the door.

          You’ve been infected with victim-lust. Getting THAT poison out of your system would be a good place to start.

          Reply
    4. blowncue

      I was groomed by my high school teacher, who stayed on the right side of the law, but planted the seeds that I chose to harvest as an adult some years after graduation. Legally, what we did was consensual. Ethically, what he did was wrong.

      I’m over 50 years old. I’m a bean counter. I have no political aspirations. I do not live in Massachusetts.

      Among the many things on my shopping list for a political candidate is someone who respects boundaries. Teachers should not sleep with students. Teachers should not sleep with students who attend the same institution where they teach. Teachers should put an ad in the paper or go to the North Star, or Pearl Street, or The Pub, even – or whatever establishment exists in the Happy Valley today – if they’re looking to meet someone with whom to share intimacies.

      I don’t care if Morse is a fine public servant. I will not look the other way in the face of what I consider to be a boundary violation because it is politically advantageous to do so. It may not rise to your threshold of a boundary violation, but it does in my book.

      I’m sick and tired of Morse’s defenders alleging homophobia for citing the fact that Morse had sexual relationships with UMass students while he taught there. No, they were not his students. But they were students, and UMass may be fine with that, and you may be fine with that, but I’m not fine with that.

      From the New York Times 8/23/20, Morse says:

      “The expectation shouldn’t be that we have to be in monogamous, heteronormative relationships before we enter public life”

      I’m sorry, but a prohibition of teachers from sleeping with students whether they be on their roster or their colleagues’ roster isn’t heteronormative. It’s healthy and necessary.

      And no, I’m not hustling for a congressional internship, and I’m not Anita Bryant, you can flush all the orange juice you want down the toilet on Commercial Street.

      Reply
      1. JWP

        Sleeping with students when it has a direct influence on a grade is something that ought to be included in a code of conduct, but if two consenting adults have an affair it does not make either of them less righteous, it just makes them different. This is not a NAMBLA (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_American_Man/Boy_Love_Associationhttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/North_American_Man/Boy_Love_Association) situation. What happens when a teacher unknowingly meets a student at one of those pubs and they have an affair? Does that remain unethical?
        I must ask, does listing all of these pieces make your claim more right in a world where there are equally many examples of the opposite viewpoint? The DNCs goal in their attempts to stifle progressive challengers is trying to make their candidate seem like the most “righteous” one my utilizing their massive media apparatus. Have you fallen into this trap, and will Neal’s policies benefit the LGBTQIA community more the Morse’s?

        Reply
      2. The Rev Kev

        What I never see is mentions of how favours can be done by a teacher, especially in a college setting. Would a teacher give a student – male or female – a pass mark in exchange for a bit of rumpy-pump? I bet it happens. And that is why it is unethical for a student-teacher relationship. At least not in the same school or college.

        Reply
      3. Pat

        Differences here:
        The gentleman in question WAS your teacher.
        You were in High School. Unless you were slow or had a debilitating illness, you were not a consenting adult for more than a four month or so period, and probably not even that.
        Even a large high school is dwarfed by a state college the size of UMass. This is important in that Morse and the people he had relations with could conceivably never encounter each other on campus, we know they never saw each other in class. UMass is equivalent to a small city.
        College students are a wide variety of ages. Even those who start out in their late teens do not stay that way for long. Did Morse only date freshmen? Unless he did you really need to get over the idea that they were babies. Young and stupidly invincible, probably, but not children.

        I could go on, but what is quite clear is that even after years you have not processed what happened to you. And you are trying to equate a situation with significant differences to your situation.

        Reply
    5. jr

      No, you wouldn’t book him because it’s not illegal to have sex with 18 or 19 year olds. Your use of language is suspect here. There is a vast difference between a 15 year olds mind and 18/19 year olds one because 1. society has deemed it acceptable for 18/19 years olds to engage in sex with whoever they like and 2. 18/19 year olds often have had sex with whoever they care to. Neither is true of a 15 year old. To bring up a child in a conversation about adult affairs where no child has played a role is also suspect language. As in intentionally slanted to convey a kind of background message, to paint a background against which to frame a story.

      And your credentials do nothing to support your “case”. Plenty of LBTQXYZ#$& types are careerists who care for nothing more than howling paeans to the DNC in one form or another. Plenty of them also resort to suspect language such as yours. This is of course in addition to your overt slurs like “moral turpitude”.

      Reply
      1. jr

        In fact, this brings up another language phenomenon I’ve noticed in the PMC crowd around my hood: the use of the accusation “yelling”. It has primarily but not exclusively been used by women, all PMC Karen’s of one flavor or another.

        So what happens is is that the slightest display of emotional energy in a conversation or interaction in which they disagree with the other person is tagged as “yelling”. If you laugh out loud at the proposition that Biden is a decent human being, you’re yelling, getting loud. I was in an unavoidable conversation with one at a bar a year back or so. When I caught her patently lying about something to avoid having to admit something else she had said earlier, I told her that she was a liar and I would no longer discuss politics with her. She ignored all that and immediately began to prattle on about being “yelled at” and how she was a little “scared”. It tries to, as the post above does in a different way, paint a background narrative, a framing, in which the speaker is a victim and the other is borderline violent. Because men. Or because not deluded enough to think the Dems care a whistle. Or because whenever anyone mentions politics you just laugh and wave them away.

        It’s not hard to see where this comes from. If a line of thinking can be drawn to the “wokesters” from the loopy cartoon world of Crit Theory, the epistemology that eschews epistemologies, the truth that denies the ability to make truth claims, it all makes sense. I realize sense is doing a lot of work here.

        The truth is what you want it to be. If you don’t like something, it’s a bad thing. Since there are no standards of knowledge, of what seems true or not, there isn’t any reason not to lie or exaggerate. Especially when faced with a deplorable, or a straight man, or a queer who sees through your phony concern.

        Reply
        1. jr

          Further thoughts: the trend I see in people’s language towards disagreement (with the individual and/or the status quo etc.) as discourtesy. Laughing out loud about Biden’s complete lack of morals or the notion of Harris helping, not hurting, children is rude; laughing out loud about some low info MAGA Qanon type thinks mask cause cancer is fine. If you point out the absurdity of all of those claims, you’re ruder. Attempts to support your feelings are met with confusion, because making reasoned arguments drag on and anyway it’s all your opinion. When you point out that if all anyone has are opinions, than thats all they have and therefore no one has facts and there is no reason to credit what they are saying you can hear the vacuum tubes popping…

          Reply
      1. upstater

        When I worked at the railroad an old timer said “never shit where you eat and never shit in your back yard”.

        It is irrelevant whether his partners were in his classes. It occurred with students at the institution where he was employed. There are plenty of opportunities for people to hook up outside of work. Morse was a moron to hook up with students where he worked. Did he try this at city hall? Almost certainly not.

        And to reiterate my comment above, had this occurred with young female students, he would have been crucified by the PC Police as soon as this became public.

        And, yes, Richard Neal is a political whore. 2 wrongs don’t make a right, as is the case of Biden and Trump. I wouldn’t vote for either Neal or Morse.

        Reply
          1. Foy

            It’s an analogy… “The use of analogy cleverly draws a parallel between two things and another set of two things.”. You don’t get your meat where you get your bread…

            Reply
            1. Foy

              Actually a metaphor “metaphor is a figure of speech that actually transfers the meaning of one thing directly on another unit”

              I need to go back to school. The difference between those two always gets me!

              Reply
        1. Pat

          So people who work in a business with thousands of employees, should never date anyone who also works there even if they never see one another there as it they are in completely different department, possibly even in a completely different building?

          I know when I went to college I would never see, encounter or be around anyone from the archeology department on campus. I wouldn’t even have met any of them except my neighbor at our off campus apartments dated someone in that department.

          This is not about a campus with a few hundred students. In fact U Mass Amherst has over 30,000 students, 1400 plus full time faculty, and no officially listed numbers on adjuncts and part time faculty. It sits on 1450 acres.

          Time for everyone to stop equating this with a high school.

          Reply
  32. Jason Boxman

    But look at the Democrat Party requirement that you can raise hundreds of thousands of dollars from your rolodex on day 0 if you’re running for office. The Democrat Party base is the PMC, not the left.

    The Democrat Party loves their base. It’s them and those like them.

    Reply
  33. JWP

    ‘“What we really need, then, is not so much a theory of money, but a theory of why people misunderstand money.”’
    While I agree with the commentary on the power structures money and debt create, I think modern misunderstanding is much simpler. People have been trained that all finance is to be treated like a personal or business account, with efficiency, no debt, and “making money.” Obviously this does not apply to the fed and it is closer to having a mint in your own pocket or saying the government creates the money we all spend and earn. How could you ever go into debt? The next step would be illuminating that banks can create capital out of thin air and dont use their profits or reserves to make loans. This would go a long ways to expose banks as frauds and shift how the public stores and spends their money. Finally, exposing unemployment as a fraudulent statistic and that it does not need to exist, and only exists as a wage suppressor , can almost completely eliminate any D or R argument in favor of dangerous fossil fuel projects under the guise of “jobs.” An if a jobs guarantee pays a minimum higher than what the private sector offers, say $20/hr+, it’ll force companies to pay higher wages.

    Getting this taught at all stages of school is vital to public understanding.

    Reply
    1. Anonymous

      An if a jobs guarantee pays a minimum higher than what the private sector offers, say $20/hr+, it’ll force companies to pay higher wages.

      Yes, but that would be a one-time wage increase ONLY.

      Thereafter, MMT’s “buffer stock of labor” would be used to suppress wage increases in order to preclude a wage-price inflation spiral.

      Also please consider that only minimum wage laws are needed to raise wages …

      Besides which, what is important is TOTAL income, not income from wages alone. Where then is the MMT proposal for a Citizen’s Dividend to replace all fiat creation for private interests such as for the banks and asset owners?

      Reply
      1. JWP

        I’m not ready to throw support behind a citizens dividend until the flow of money stops going directly to the top. otherwise, what good is the dividend anyways. Same flaw that emerges with UBI in the US is that, like this stimulus round, the money is mostly spent on consumer goods and therefore issues of inequality are exacerbated. Total income is negative of lower for tens of millions, with that, it is more important for m4a, college for all, etc to alleviate costs, rather than to provide money to spend and facilitate the upwards flow of money.

        What evidence is there that absent a jobs guarantee, the private sector has ever been willing to broadly increase wages? Furthermore, a “wage-price inflation spiral” would run contrary to MMTs teachings unless there was excess money supply beyond what is offered at full employment (when money supply is greater than resources it can purchase)

        Reply
  34. Darthbobber

    “In defense of looting” will presumably make a nice chunk of change for it’s author, but other than that it doesn’t do a lot.

    Blathering on about something as a “tactic” seems to be quite common, but of course it assumes what is to be proven, namely that this is a tactic at all and not a purely opportunistic thing for people largely uninvolved in anything else.

    A “tactical” discussion, unless one is engaged in a training exercise, also means next to nothing in the absence of a strategy within which the tactics fit and a desired objective which the strategy is intended to bring about.

    What I would take to be the only point of a “tactical” discussion, which is to evaluate whether deploying one or another will or will not contribute to the desired goal within a given context, seems to be generally avoided as if irrelevant.

    Reply
    1. pjay

      If the desired goal is to get Trump reelected, then I think this “tactical” discussion is quite appropriate. If not, then I can’t for the life of me see what other possible goal the author (and NPR) had in mind.

      Reply
  35. Wukchumni

    Armed civilians at US protests: ‘A threshold has been crossed’ FT
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    Indeed, its only a matter of time before the protagonists unload on one another and/or the police, and as i’ve mentioned previously, guns have more rights than humans in the USA, so they’ll get off scot-free, although those previously cradling them not so much.

    Reply
  36. epynonymous

    Did I read correctly that the fed has accepted the need to raise interest levels?

    If so, won’t all these ‘zombie companies’ be immediately flushed down the toilet unless we have a comprehensive social plan to deal with it?

    ___

    Answers : social capital. If we (everyone) have to bail out companies, shouldn’t the dividends on these bailout eventually go to the consumer who paid for it?

    Second answer: 10 additional days sick leave – Not enough jobs? No problem! Just give your employees a pittance of timeoff and hire more! Justified by everything but right wing ‘morality.’ Bonus : keeps the poors from getting the rich sick in a pandemic.

    Hey Biden? You listening?

    Reply
  37. Tomonthebeach

    After reading the Bloomberg article on Heroin ingredients, it makes one wonder why in the hell acetic anhydride is not banned internationally as an illicit substance. That it has a few industrial uses would seem to be outweighed by an order of magnitude or even more – given the cost to society of addiction. Industries could not find a replacement chemical? Ban acetic anhydride and watch how fast a substitute appears.

    It is disgusting that US Billionaires are profiting off a chemical made in a country where it is easily diverted to illicit use. That a US company would go bankrupt as a result would also be a fuzzy assertion as the firm could easily manufacture something else. As the only global producer, heroin would cease to exist in just a few months.

    Reply
    1. UserFriendly

      Because it is trivially easy to manufacture if need be. I could make it from common solvents, potash, vinegar, and Iodine.

      Reply
  38. JohnMinMN

    Only five states making use of Trump’s expanded unemployment benefits: reports The Hill. Arizona, Louisiana, Missouri, Montana and Texas.

    You can add Minnesota to that list.

    Reply
    1. Louis Fyne

      illinois and a few other states applied. no states have been rejected. takes about 3 weeks from application to approval because……paperwork

      Reply
  39. NotTimothyGeithner

    I wish we would have won too, but our job now is to defeat Trump

    The subject line from the latest Sanders email blast. Maybe I’m the only recipient. Given the demands for the left to not merely vote for Biden but to get into a panic and work for the effer, I’m wondering if the Biden campaign is having a melt down.

    Marianne Williamson has a tweet which does make the best argument for voting for Biden which is Trump will be completely unhinged if he is reelected which is particularly dangerous given the recent set of events. At the same time, the voices aren’t pretending Biden is a good guy anymore. They are being honest, and Obama had his line about how from 40,000 feet Biden and Sanders look the same (coincidentally, an oral hygienist from Germany with the best eye sight in the world can recognize faces from a mile away). I suspect the Salute to Bob Dole didn’t help the way Biden expected and that as people who didn’t know much about Biden are finding out he is Joe Biden. I would imagine most Sanders voters already knew who Biden was. If BIden was remotely tolerable, I might have voted for him, but how does a person who voted for Biden because he liked Obama on tv and is now finding out about Biden’s record have to deal with?

    I’ve also noticed unlike the Salute to Bob Dole now Biden and his flunkies are holding up Sanders’ support too in the last few days.

    Reply
    1. neo-realist

      Marianne Williamson has a tweet which does make the best argument for voting for Biden which is Trump will be completely unhinged if he is reelected which is particularly dangerous given the recent set of events.

      I tend to lean toward that position: A Trump re-election would not only facilitate the eradication of SS and Medicare through defunding and benefit cuts, but I could see this KGB/police state rendition action of sorts of federal officers picking protestors off the streets being extended all over the country to activists being picked up in their homes and detained unlawfully and indefinitely for being involved in actions opposing the Trump administration; Knowing some activists involved in such non-violent activity makes me fear for their safety. I also believe that police departments all over the country will see a Trump administration as a signal that they can abuse American POC at will without fear of being brought to justice by an administration that responds to police brutality against POC with a shoulder shrug. Not to mention embolden the brownshirt 2.0 groups to engage in greater levels of street level violence against progressive activists, with the blessing of law enforcement, in all likelihood.

      For those that believe I’m wearing the tin foil, I hope you’re right and things don’t play out like this. Some of you think we will simply rebuild if everything is torn down, however I can foresee enough economic and political repression coming from a second term that it will be an environment that will be very difficult for progressives to stake out the groundwork to fight for a better country.

      Reply
  40. JWP

    Re: Portland rally shooting..
    It started as a 600 car caravan in Clackamas, a suburb, and drove into the city for the rally with the free trump flags the campaign gives out. There really isn’t a goal here other than to piss off the other side. It’s not wonder violence like this happens, people don’t actually know what they’re protesting deep down which is cause for irrational actions.
    Just a bunch of people with massive feelings of emptiness and hopelessness, filling the void by getting joy on other’s anger. It’s misdirected anger and I wonder who will be the one to stand up and tell them neither party is their friend and they won’t get help until there are economic changes made en mass (the right way this time).

    Reply
  41. Tomonthebeach

    Why Isn’t Modern Monetary Theory Common Knowledge?

    Oddly, I have not yet seen a post to address the question begged by the article, other than by the author. As a psychologist who reads in economics, I think it is rather obvious that most Americans are ignorant about household finance. That might be why my friend Chicago U economist Harold Pollack’s book The Index Card was a best-seller. High school does a terrible job teaching money management so most people learn it from balancing their checkbook. Few understand APRs on credit cards or ROI/APR on home purchases.

    So from that limited grasp of things money, MMT starts with “Forget about everything you know about household finance because sovereign systems never run out of money…” As this sounds like heresy or simply a physical impossibility to the average person, the resulting cognitive dissonance is likely resolved by rejecting it as “just some egg-head theory” – just the way our stable genius Congress has demonstrated until now.

    You gotta give Powell credit. Whodathunk he would be the trigger?

    Reply
  42. Zagonostra

    * The People’s Party

    Is this the first comment today on the Convention being virtually held today? If it is, then it seems like it already failed. When all the focus and attention is on the two corrupt Parties, and no mention is given to the only sane course to avert disaster, it does not bode well.

    I’ve tuned in a couple of times today, but I hope they are saving the heavy hitters like Chris Hedges, Nina Turner, Corner West, and Jimmy Dore for tonight.

    Reply
      1. zagonostra

        Thank you NC!

        Hope everyone who has been sh%ting on the two faux Parties, like they justifiably deserve, gets behind 3’d Party and fights back instead of lying supine and defeated.

        Reply
    1. zagonostra

      Jessie Ventura is on right now. What a contrast, in appearance, in tone and substance. Polo shirt, disheveled hair – definitely no hair plugs. Biggest contrast though is he is speaking the truth, making, sense and void of platitudes and appeals to identity.

      First Half over… Not too late to tune in

      Reply
    2. Zagonostra

      Marianne Williamson…liked opening remarks but not her voting for OBiden.

      This is the big split on the Left and in the circle of my own acquaintance. I wonder if that was part of her pledge to support the nominee when she ran for Pres.

      Over all good speech.

      Reply
      1. nycTerrierist

        Chris Hedges and Nina Turner were on fire

        unfortunately I missed Williamson, hope to find
        a clip online

        Reply
    3. richard

      Not so fast on that failure Zagonostra! Comrades are everywhere :)
      or at least it is best for now to proceed as if that were true

      Reply
  43. Wukchumni

    Come and listen to my story about a kid named Kyle
    A young wanna be copper, left a trio in a Kenosha pile,
    You see this one day he was shootin’ at some dudes
    And down to the ground come protesters as alluded

    Guns that is, black lives matter, not to he

    Well the first thing you know with the usual fanfare
    The hard right said “Kyle move away from there”
    Said DC is the place you ought to be”
    So they loaded up his defense fund and moved to dismiss

    He’s a hero you know, with accomplishments too numerous to list

    Reply
  44. The Rev Kev

    “German parliament break-in an ‘attack’ on democracy, says president”

    What would happen of Alexander Lukashenko of Belarus started threatening sanctions against the Berlin authorities for their treatment of the attackers, errrr, protesters and demand that their human rights be respected?

    Reply
  45. VietnamVet

    I was back home in 1968. I have no recollection of the flu epidemic that killed 60,000 then. But this year I’ve been sheltering in place since February 3rd. 187,224 Americans to date have died of COVID-19. The riots after MLK assassination were in black majority central cities far to the East. The anti-war protests were underway but Kent State was yet to happen.

    This year the protests are integrated and everywhere. The rioting and looting are increasing because the pandemic and economic depression remain unaddressed. Donald Trump’s reelection campaign is using the unrest to solidify and enrage his followers in order to stay in the White House.

    The US government is intentionally ignoring daily paper antigen testing and restoring a functional public health system since this would undermine the ineffective for-profit healthcare system and eliminate billions of dollars in profit from a future vaccine which would just be icing on the cake if the pandemic was controlled this year.

    Democrats too are using the pandemic and economic hardships for their own self interest to remove Donald Trump and restore the Western Empire with Joe Biden as Emperor. They also are avoiding government actions to alleviate the unrest. The problem is when a people have nothing to lose, radicals came out on top as in Russia and France. The whole US elite cluster is incompetent.

    Warfare is not too far away with the oligarch globalist and nationalist clans going after each other and Trump’s militia armed and sort of ready.

    Reply
  46. richard

    Hey, in case you were uninformed, the People’s Party held its founding convention today. The speakers included c. west, n. turner and many, many others. I am sort of totally on fire about it. There were almost 70K viewers on Twitter alone, it trended #1 in politics, #2 overall for awhile.
    turner and west were both electric. it felt historic, but maybe that’s my confirmation bias kicking in.
    And speaking of kicks, how’s this for a kicker? I was in the convention! They used a short video from me in a montage they ran where people gave testimonials. I’ll link the whole thing for you here once they get it up on you tube. I’ll also annotate it w/time stamps for the best bits (there were many!)

    Reply
  47. ObjectiveFunction

    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-berkshire-stake-japan/warren-buffett-looks-to-japan-takes-5-stakes-in-five-biggest-trading-firms-idUSKBN25Q0YD

    The Japanese trading companies in many ways appear to be a typical Buffett investment: four of them trade well below book value, meaning their market capitalizations were below their assets. Several also have hefty amounts of cash on hand.

    Further and in a likely attraction for Buffett – who famously avoids investing in companies he claims not to understand – the Japanese trading houses are deeply involved in the real economy: steel, shipping, commodities, and in some cases retail.

    I know the Sage of Omaha has few fanfolk here, but whatever else he may be, he is an industrialist and a long investor. He has just voted on the future (for or against, or both). I wonder what future that is?

    Reply

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