2:00PM Water Cooler 10/6/2015

By Lambert Strether of

TPP/TTIP/TiSA

Plenty of other TPP material today already here and here (which also explains why today’s Water Cooler is a bit light on links).”

Editorial: “President Obama Needs to Make Case for Pacific Trade Deal” []. Ideas: Release the full text pronto, release all the “parallel agreements,” and stop fighting for communications between Froman — a former Citigroup executive — and financial services companies with vested interests in the deal’s structure.” I mean, clearly Froman is clean, so what could the issue possibly be? I mean, come on. You’re not going to make me get out my magic markers for another one of Obama’s greatest speeches ever, are you? Show us something.

“Trans-Pacific Partnership: Should the key losers – China and Europe – join forces?” []. We have always been at war with Eurasia and Eastasia…

“In the meantime, it will be essential to review the TPP when it becomes public and, while the agreement itself cannot be changed, Congress can insist on side deals” [Jared Bernstein, ]. How about some strange bedfellows draft a side deal gutting ISDS?

2016

Policy

“Al Gore at the Washington Ideas Forum” [James Fallows, ]. Really a teaser for an upcoming Fallows article, but with an interesting factoid from Gore.

“Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton laid out a broad vision Monday to reduce gun violence in the US in the wake of last week’s mass shooting at a community college in Oregon” []. “Though Sanders and Clinton agree on many gun-control proposals, such as closing the so-called gun-show loophole on background checks, Sanders’ somewhat checkered history on the issue allows Clinton to stake out a position to his left.”

Money

“Jeb is cooked: Why megadonors’ millions (probably) aren’t going to save Bush’s disastrous campaign” []. Granted, Salon is an outpost of the Democratic nomenklatura, but you can’t beat something with nothing, and right now Bush personifies nothing. (He’s stupid, too; Maggie Thatcher, not a US citizen, on our ten dollar bill? WTF?)

“Mr. Lessig’s $1 million haul, raised from 10,000 donations, was largely pledged over the summer in the lead-up to his campaign.” [, “Tech Icon Lawrence Lessig Raises $1 Million for Presidential Bid”]

The Voters

“62% of Americans think the country is off on the wrong track, continuing a record 11-year streak of polls finding most people think the country is not moving in the right direction. The new poll also found that 80% of Americans were either angry about the political system, anxious about the economy or both. More than half of Americans say they are upset enough about something that they would carry a protest sign for a day” [, “Voters’ Mood: Surly Side Up, With a Side of Optimism, Poll Shows”]. “Here’s the ray of hope: More than half of Americans — 53% — say they are confident and optimistic about their own financial situation. But that upbeat assessment is unevenly spread….”

The Trail

“In a nationally televised New Hampshire town hall event broadcast on NBC’s ‘Today’ show, Clinton accused Republicans of exploiting the deaths of four Americans in the September 11, 2012 Benghazi terrorist attack to score political points against her; crowed about her national and early-voting state polling leads; and made impassioned liberal arguments for gun control and income equality” []. “Crowed”?

Sanders in Portland, ME: “Sanders has been known as a democratic socialist for decades. This didn’t matter much to Kiley or York, or to most other Sanders supporters I met during the next few weeks; mainly, they were impressed that he hadn’t shed the term” []. “York thought that, because of Sanders and his ‘social-media-driven fans,’ socialism was ‘getting a bit of a P.R. makeover.'”

Stats Watch

International Trade, August 2015: “Exports were down nearly across the board” []. “A surge in imports of new iPhones helped what was an unusually wide trade gap in August of $48.3 billion, well up from July’s revised $41.8 billion.” But: “Import goods growth has positive implications historically to the economy – and the seasonally adjusted goods and services imports were reported up month-over-month” [].

Gallup US Economic Confidence Indicator, September 2015: “Unlike other confidence readings that are climbing, Gallup’s reading is holding at lows” []. “For current conditions, 24 percent of the sample rates the economy as excellent or good vs 31 percent rating it as poor. For expectations, 38 percent say the economy is getting better vs 58 percent who say it’s getting worse.”

ZPOP index: “The ZPOP ratio is an estimate of the share of the civilian population aged 16 years and over whose labor market status is what they say they currently want (assuming that people who work full-time want to do so). A rising ZPOP ratio is consistent with a strengthening labor market” []. “Unlike the headline U-3 unemployment rate, which remained unchanged from August to September, the seasonally adjusted ZPOP ratio improved slightly (from 92.0 to 92.1 percent). Relative to an estimated 230,000 increase in the population over the month, the improvement in the ZPOP ratio was the result of an increase in the number of people who said they do not currently want a job and a decline in involuntary part-time employment in excess of the decline in total employment.”

“Has Liquidity Risk in the Treasury and Equity Markets Increased?” []. “In this post, we argue that recent changes in liquidity conditions may best be described in terms of heightened liquidity risk, as opposed to general declines in liquidity levels.”

“The latest Blogger Sentiment Poll released 05 October 2015 by Ticker Sense is slightly less bullish than last month” []. Not sure whether this will help with that ten-bagger or not…

Capex revision: ” New orders for non-military capital goods outside of aviation fell 0.8 percent in August, the Commerce Department said on Friday” []. “The government had previously reported that this gauge, which is a leading indicator of business investment, had fallen 0.2 percent during the month.”

“These Activists Are Making Life Miserable for SEC, Wall Street” []. Good stuff, but the list has a glaring omission.

Fear & Greed Index, October 5, 2015: 30 (-1); Fear []. Last week: 12 (Extreme Fear). (0 is Extreme Fear; 100 is Extreme Greed).

Gunz

The shooter, his mom, and their guns []. No, not the Lanza family and Sandy Hook.

Dear Old Blighty

The Sun’s “claims Jeremy Corbyn funded ‘IRA bomber’ turn out to be 30 years old – and inaccurate” []. Wow. They just make sh*t up, don’t they?

Water

“Ground hasn’t yet been broken on the [ $3.4 billion San Antonio pipeline project] 142-mile project, known as the Vista Ridge pipeline, but it is under attack both at its source, from rural and environmental interests anxious about drawing down the water table, and at its destination, from critics who say the city and its water utility haven’t been sufficiently transparent about its costs” [].

Gaia

“A federal court Monday rejected central pieces of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) regulations to reduce the spread of invasive species through ship ballast water” [].

“Last week, Representative Lamar Smith (R–TX), the chairman of the science panel of the House of Representatives, announced plans to investigate a nonprofit research group led by climate scientist Jagadish Shukla of George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia. He is the lead signer of a letter to White House officials that urges the use of an antiracketeering law to crack down on energy firms that have funded efforts to raise doubts about climate science” [].

“Darwin’s Classic Monster: The Parasitoid Wasp” []. Inspired by Michael Hudson.

Imperial Collapse Watch

The Syrian tar baby []. This chart is an absolute must-read. Either a complete clusterf*ck, or Mission Accomplished (i.e., the Middle East set on fire for a generation, ka-ching).

Class Warfare

“How income affects life expectancy” []. With handy chart:

life_expectancy

They don’t call it class warfare for nothing.

“The great recovery in U.S. manufacturing jobs — a surprising five-year surge that blossomed in the aftermath of the financial crisis and added almost 900,000 people to payrolls across the country — appears to be dead” []. “What’s more, the industrial slump dims hope for the manufacturing renaissance economists and President Barack Obama touted earlier this decade. Obama set a goal in 2010 to double exports in five years; shipments actually rose a little more than half that amount. And hiring hasn’t come close to replacing the 2.3 million workers lost in the 2008-2009 recession. There are currently 12.3 million factory employees in the U.S.” Wow, what a shocker.

News of the Wired

“A Brief History of the Corporation: 1600 to 2100” []. Still useful!

“A Different Approach To VC” []. “Fhe biggest thing that is wrong with the startup sector right now is entrepreneurs and their teams are too focused on valuation and not enough focused on business fundamentals.” Froth works! Until it doesn’t.

“The Blockchain Might Be The Next Disruptive Technology” []. When I hear the word “disruption,” I reach for my Browning. And prosecution futures.

“Closing a door” []. “Given the choice, I would never send another patch, bug report, or suggestion to a Linux kernel mailing list again. I am no longer a part of the Linux kernel community.” Another example of business strangling industry.

“When Sex Doesn’t Sell: Using Sexualized Images of Women Reduces Support for Ethical Campaigns” [].

“Sprout 3D PC & Scanner, New ‘Tour Truck’ Draw Throngs at World Maker Faire” []. The Sprout really does look like a cool machine.

* * *

Readers, feel free to with (a) links, and even better (b) sources I should curate regularly, and (c) to find out how to send me images of plants. Vegetables are fine! Fungi are deemed to be honorary plants! See the previous Water Cooler (with plant) here. And here’s today’s plant (Steve):

leaves

We don’t have any fall color up here, yet. Seems late, but perhaps I’m just ahead of myself.

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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.

54 comments

  1. Chauncey Gardiner

    At 2:00 PM EDT Google News featured the Trans-Pacific Partnership as its top News item and included twenty links to articles that frame this agreement in terms of “Trade” rather than what it is really about: the transfer of sovereign national powers to large transnational corporations and large banks through the Investor-State Dispute Settlement mechanism (ISDS).

    Didn’t see any mention of the TPP on the home pages of any of the websites of the major U.S. networks or PBS at this time. That which is kept secret and opaque evidently simply doesn’t exist.

    Thank you, Yves and Lambert.

      1. albrt

        The number of people in the US who care about things like the TPP and war crimes is so small that the NSA could easily be hand-curating our google news on an individual basis.

        Just a question of priorities.

  2. Banana Breakfast

    So on the gun control jockeying in the Democratic primary: would a Democratic candidate who took a right-leaning tack on gun control actually improve their general election outlook? Anecdotally, a lot of the core Republican voting base of white, low-to-middle class, Southern and Midwestern men I know, living in a southern state, are actually economically fairly left, but are absolutely terrified of losing their guns. For the young ones, at least, who have largely moved left on gay marriage and don’t care about abortion, it seems to be the last remaining wedge issue between them and left-populist candidates.

    1. James Levy

      From my perspective, and I think people should be able to own bolt-action rifles and shotguns for hunting and home defense but consider handguns a non-militia weapon and semiautomatic weapons offensive people-killers, no moderate position will allay the fears of those scared out of their minds that their manhood, i.e. their guns, i.e. their “freedom” is going to be taken from them. It’s not a rational topic for discussion. It’s a gut (or balls) level issue like abortion or Evolution. Evidence does not matter. Nothing Obama does will ever convince these people that he is not “out to take away our guns”, even though we all know here that Obama has no interest or plan to do any such thing. And Sanders won’t be able to, either, because he will be forced to equivocate and deviate from the NRA party line, and nothing less will convince many single-issue white, male gun owners that you are not chomping at the bit to “deny them their rights under the 2nd Amendment.” It would be like going to an AIPAC convention and trying to sell the idea that Palestinians are human beings with equal rights to all other human beings. Not going to fly, period.

      1. Banana Breakfast

        I don’t necessarily mean Sanders, who has probably already equivocated too much (though his heavily gun owning constituency in Vermont doesn’t seem to think so), but a hypothetical candidate who was just straight up to the right on guns. Is there really a significant portion of the Democratic base who would outright not vote for such a candidate?

        1. Daryl

          Here’s a Pew poll:

          It does seem to suggest that there are a lot more pro-gun people who consider it a “dealbreaker.”

          > By the same token, 52% of gun owners who prioritize gun rights would not vote for a candidate who disagreed with them on the issue. A smaller number of non-gun owners (33%) said they would not vote for a candidate who disagreed with them on gun policy.

      2. DJG

        James Levy: I like your plan for which guns should be allowed. Anyone who starts squawking can be pointed to any web site about guns in the 1700s to see what the originalist Founders had in hand. (I hesitate to require flintlocks.) So I wonder if a candidate came out for the second amendment (in theory) and listed the allowable guns (in practice). I have a feeling that real hunters, who seem to be easily stampeded, may come around quickly on this matter.

        Real hunters do not go into shopping malls with guns strapped to their manly or womanly thighs, though. These people, who may not even vote, will take longer to persuade. Arresting some of them will help, believe it or not.

        So to answer the questions below: Yes, if the Democrat was specific and insisted that hand guns and repeating rifles are what have to be withdrawn from circulation, point out there is no duck season for pistols.

        1. James Levy

          The fact is although we may be the most heavily armed society on the planet (OK, Afghanistan probably has more guns per capita, but I’m talking about nations not involved in endless civil and guerillal wars) most people know next to nothing about firearms, including way too many people who own them. Most politicians could not identify one gun type from another. And this hurts them as it destroys their credibility. The fact that the standard 5.56mm round for most modern assault rifles makes a really piss-poor hunting round matters when you are talking to people. It also means that the only real purpose for such a weapon firing such a round is killing lots and lots of people. And the fact is that it makes little sense to allow anyone outside the Army or Marine Corps Reserve or the National Guard to have such a weapon.

          With rights come responsibilities. Ironically, so-called conservatives say this all the time, but never seem to extend it to the kinds of weapons we might wish to possess. Someone would have to make a hell of a case that certain types of weapons are necessary in order to outweigh the dangers and drawbacks of letting people have them (think M60 machine guns or grenade launchers, for sure). I think I had every right to say “I think President Bush should be impeached and tried as a war criminal.” I didn’t have the right to say “I would encourage someone to shoot President Bush down like a dog in the street.” One thing is Constitutionally protected, the other is not. But this assumes that guns are, in the American context, a rational issue open to reasoned debate. I would argue that they are, unfortunately, no such thing.

          1. shinola

            “… this assumes that guns are, in the American context, a rational issue open to reasoned debate. I would argue that they are, unfortunately, no such thing.”

            Yep, nailed it right there.

          2. hunkerdown

            “OK, Afghanistan probably has more guns per capita, but I’m talking about nations not involved in endless civil and guerillal wars”

            Then why exclude the USA? Exceptionalism much?

      3. Ben Around

        I suppose I am a gun-owning male Midwestern socialist. All this talk of mass shootings is valid. But it must be weighed against something of even greater import.

        Many rational people do not keep arms because they are scared in church or hope for a shootout at the drugstore. They don’t fear the government. They stay armed because they know governments can change unpredictably. Then, all bets are off. Please compare these awful mass shootings to their alternatives. I posit that the Ukrainian famine, the Rape of Nanking, the Vichy round-up of Jews, the coup against Allende would not have been anywhere near as lethal if there’d been arms in every citizen’s home to fight back. Proof: You can bomb the Afghans back to the Stone Age, but even a superpower (Britain/Soviets/Americans) cannot defeat a populace with a rifle in every hut.

        1. Yves Smith

          *Sigh*

          Are you at all up on the sort of firepower armies now possess, and that state and municipalities are getting military equipment like tanks, and are getting new nasty toys like sound weapons? You and a gun won’t last any length of time against a helicopter gunship, or for that matter, even a tear gassing. And they can just firebomb your home and force you out in the open, and shoot from their bunkered positions from multiple vantage points.

        2. Massinissa

          Wake me up when Hezbollah or something similar comes over to train you and your American resistance friends against helicopters, tanks drones, armored vehicles, etc.

          And before you say Veterans will train all of you, theyre trained in counterinsurgency, not insurgency, and according to many were not very good at counterinsurgency in Iraq anyway.

        3. OIFVet

          All of the insurgencies require a committed foreign backer/s and safe heavens nearby. Who will be your foreign backer, and where will your safe heaven be? Canada? Mexico? It’s silliness to think that armed citizenry can keep the coercive power of the state at bay with handguns, assault weapons, and the occasional home made explosive. It ain’t paintball or a movie.

          1. Massinissa

            Well, not EVERY insurgency needs a foreign backer. Having local tributaries (FARC gets most of its cash from taxing Columbian gold mines these days) or doing drug trafficking (Taliban and opium) can also work.

            But yeah, you cant just have an insurgency with no cash flow and some largely untrained guys with sub-automatic rifles against the most expensive military in the world along with possibly the most militarized police in the world.. Its wishful thinking at best.

        4. RabidGandhi

          The Allende analogy is just as fallacious.

          In this case we have a pretty good historical parallel : Argentina, where there were plenty of armed citizens in the persons of the Montoneros and ERP. The result? While 3,000 were killed in Chile, some 30,000 were killed in Argentina. As one ex-militant told me “the big lesson we learned in ’76 was that it was one thing to screw around with the police, but it’s whole different ball of wax to fight the army”. In other words, history shows (1) you are going to be out-armed and (2) the more arms you have, the more of you will be killed.

          Also, I should point out that yes there were plenty of people against the coups, but very few took up arms against it. This seems to hold true in every conflict i’ve studied (even in the particularly participatory Spanish Civil War), and i can’t imagine that a hypothetical coup or whatever in the US would be any different.

    2. jrs

      Oh who knows maybe they deliberately don’t do so in order to lose. The Dem party is expert on losing you have to admit, having given away the house and Senate. Losing is the one thing they seem good at. What would it be like to have a Dem party whose base really was the working class? They’d probably still be horrible because that’s what they are, but to even in theory had a party whose major issue was representing the working class – oh my. Can’t really have that can we? Now back to your regularly scheduled culture war …

    3. armchair

      A hypothetical gun enthusiast as candidate might have the luck of Howard Dean who talked a great deal about capturing voters with gun racks in their pick-ups. Maybe they could do photo-ops of their duck hunt like John Kerry did in 2004. Maybe they would harvest a big chunk of the population, or maybe the good ol’ boys would decide that democrats can’t be trusted on the 2nd Amendment.

  3. James Levy

    The shocking thing about Jeb is how he got elected in Florida, a state in which he was not born and did not grow up. Political Scientists and pundits like to flog governors as more apt potential presidents, but Jeb, his brother, Romney, Perry, and the dim bulb from Wisconsin all seem to point to another conclusion. The cadres we are allowed to pick from are horrifically poor.

    Does anyone think that like in the period 1848-1856 our choices are so bad because elites simply can’t agree so they want do-nothings to hold the White House while they try to make up their collective minds about where the ship of state should be headed? And are we approaching an 1860 moment where the elite splinters and so a competent figure or two might make it into the race representing the least-nutty elites? This is a very tentative notion, so please, take it in that spirit.

    1. Banana Breakfast

      Governors are particularly susceptible to being convinced of the necessity of austerity, because at the state level budget balancing is, on some level, a necessity. The notion, then, that being the chief executive of a state government prepares you substantially for federal office is wrongheaded – the US federal government is a fundamentally different animal.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        “Balanced budgets” are a necessity because no one wants state IOUs and the state can only sell so many bonds.

    2. NotTimothyGeithner

      “Capitalism for the poor, socialism for the rich” springs to mind. We’ve just reached a point where there is so little left to steal the rich are turning on each other. Team Blue still thinks the shallow and country club Republicans will rush to Hillary saving them, but Obama didn’t win those votes against McCain/Palin in 2008 or against Mittens.

      Of course, the GOP was fairly divided. 43 was a unique case who united the elite and tools. Reagan despite his later canonization was an insurgent candidate against the GOP blue bloods. I see the GOP sugar daddies pouring money into losers like a sports owner throwing money at an over the hill free agent, and I wonder why. Part of me thinks, they want to outright buy a candidate and presumed winner (look at Dan Snyder and the team from Washington; money and time doesn’t always win) to protect themselves from being the loser. Obama and Hilary are practically carry “will work for food” signs around K Street, but I could see how an interested elite might see that hey have too many bosses already to be trusted. Mittens had the GOP elite backing because he was George Romney’s son and was perceived as a potential winner, and yet, there were still sugar daddies for nothing campaigns.

  4. Watt4Bob

    “Here’s the ray of hope: More than half of Americans — 53% — say they are confident and optimistic about their own financial situation.

    That’s because a significant percentage of the middle-class, and most of the upper-middle-class has yet to realize that they’re increasingly impacted by the looting, because, let’s face it, the rest of us haven’t much left to loot.

    …and then there’s denial.

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      Polling methodology is at issue. Who answers the call? People on budgets? Younger people barely communicate by phone calls anyway having moved to text messaging.

  5. allan

    The horrifying divergence in life expectancies for males by income is interesting in light of the Simpson-Bowles nonsense that Social Security needs to be cut because we’re all living longer.

      1. allan

        You’ll have to ask Mr. Bowles or Mr. Simpson. [Yes, “we’re all living longer” should have been in quotes.]

  6. cm

    The French

    Angry workers stormed an Air France meeting where executives were planning to cut 2,900 jobs, forcing the bosses to flee with their clothes in tatters.

  7. Schtthub

    I enjoyed the article on the Linux Kernel person leaving – thank you.

    But why is this an example of “business strangling industry.”? I mean, Linus and likely other kernel developers were being arrogant long before anyone in industry paid them to develop for their Open Source work. I don’t follow.

    1. hunkerdown

      Industry: the creation of value. Business: elites (and their lickspittles and hangers-on) combining to organize said production to their own disproportionate benefit.

  8. Oregoncharles

    I have a request about the Stats Watch:

    Because it’s daily, ordinary mortals like myself find it difficult to see any significant movement. The Stats become sort of eye-glazing.

    You could EITHER: make it easier on yourself by posting it weekly;
    OR: work harder by posting an occasional overview. Granted, a good portion of NC is that, but explicit connections would help.

    More sophisticated readers may resent this suggestion, but for me, either option would make it more useful.

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      I could try to do an occasional overview. But a large part of the business world hangs on the the regular release of those stats, and they drive the news cycle, so once a week is not on.

      1. Oregoncharles

        I’d appreciate the occasional overview, and I bet I’m not the only one. I hate to ask you to do more, though.

  9. Kael

    Can someone fill me in on the “business strangling industry” quip and how it’s relevant to Linux kernel dev bad behavior? what am I missing?

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      It’s really Linus’s business and with a culture that’s the way he wants it. But that’s getting in the way of industry, the actual work, on the evidence that talented people are leaving. Kernel developers are not, I think, a dime a dozen.

      1. Kael

        OK, thanks. I’m not an expert on that organization so I’ll forgo any further comment about that painful situation. I read it as part of the current bad-people-behaving-badly in an isolated tech subculture phenomenon that seems to be reaching a level that should warrant serious concern aside from its industrial impact.

      2. hunkerdown

        Kernel developers are assuredly not a dime a dozen, especially those that work with complex, multi-layered, interlocking abstractions that are today’s peripheral buses and controllers. She’s produced and shipped quality deliverables in the form of a new USB chipset driver, so she’s an actual contributor of some stature and “don’t let the door hit you” would be all sorts of uncalled for.

        That said, I suppose “barbarian” attitudes could be defenses against appropriation or infiltration or excessive management involvement (which rarely ends well). Consider the guy from Intel who really really wanted to the kernel’s entropy service exclusively with the x86 CPU’s built-in, black-box random number generator by default. Lay justice against such too-competent-not-to-be-malicious agents, clearly performing an unneeded, unwanted, uncalled-for optimization to poison a common pool resource toward the interests of the global SIGINT community, shouldn’t be ruled out, if somehow they get past the door.

  10. tgs

    re: Salon Mid-east chart

    Strange that Israel doesn’t appear on that chart – they have developed some really interesting ‘friends’ – SA for instance.

  11. Wayne Harris

    “The great recovery in U.S. manufacturing jobs — a surprising five-year surge that blossomed in the aftermath of the financial crisis and added almost 900,000 people to payrolls across the country — appears to be dead”

    Surprising? Blossomed? Gotta love the almost infinite capacity of the MSM financial press for Panglossian overstatement. Losing 6 million manufacturing jobs in 15 years and then gaining back 900,000 the next 5 doth not a “great recovery” make. Even if manufacturing employment weren’t slumping again, that rate of recovery would restore us to 1995 salad-day levels about mid-century.

    1. Just Ice

      Because efficiency; 900,000 can now do the work of 6 million? :)

      But anywho, fighting a money cartel with labor cartels was always going to be a losing proposition because of the inevitability of automation.

      “The few who understand the system will either be so interested in its profits or be so dependent upon its favours that there will be no opposition from that class, while on the other hand, the great body of people, mentally incapable of comprehending the tremendous advantage that capital derives from the system, will bear its burdens without complaint, and perhaps without even suspecting that the system is inimical to their interests.” The Rothschild brothers of London writing to associates in New York, 1863.

  12. Peter Pan

    “The Blockchain Might Be The Next Disruptive Technology” [TechCrunch]. When I hear the word “disruption,” I reach for my Browning. And prosecution futures.

    I have to admit that I’m surprised that Lambert owns a firearm (Browning). Then again, he may just own a figure of speech.

      1. craazyman

        What about Winchester’s?

        His late 19th century 30-30 lever action was a masterpiece. Colt was justly famous too at about the same time. I think they even named a Malt Liquor after him. That doesn’t happen to just anybody!

  13. wbgonne

    Lambert correctly quotes:

    “A federal court Monday rejected central pieces of the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) regulations to reduce the spread of invasive species through ship ballast water”

    Later in the article:

    The decision is a major win for a coalition of environmental groups that had sued, saying the EPA did not adequately explain why it couldn’t go further in mandating technology and practices to reduce the movement of organisms.

      1. wbgonne

        The Great Confounder strike again. Obama’s EPA gets reversed for under-regulating. It’s like having a Republican president, only without the clarity.

  14. Dugh

    Very cool!

    Nobel Prize in Physics: Neutrino mass from flavour oscillations.

    (Good description with a nice chart on quantum superposition)

  15. Virginia Simson

    #FallRising: Mass Mobilization to Stop TPP, TTIP, & TiSA!

    Sign on! This is the war of our lifetime! Share it with your groups, please.

    From November 14-18 people across the country will converge on Washington DC for action to demand an end to global corporate domination and the TPP, TTIP, and TiSA.

    The United States is negotiating three massive international treaties–the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the TransAtlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP) and the Trade-in-Services Agreement (TiSA). These agreements, whose contents are classified secrets, will expand global corporate power, harming the planet and people everywhere and destroying democracy.

    People around the world are rising against the corporate “trade” agenda. Now it is our turn. This November 14-18, during the APEC meetings in the Phillipines, people from many different backgrounds and movements will come together in Washington to demand that the first of these deals, the TPP, be stopped and an alternative international economic agreement that puts people and the planet first be negotiated in a transparent and democratic way.

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