7.17.2018

Tuesday

Trump and Putin
The real issue I have with Russia-gate is that basically all the people complaining about Russian interference know that Israel had a huge influence on the election, from the things listed in Cole's post above, to the huge donations from Sheldon Adelson to Trump and the R's, to an Israeli firm working with the Russians and the Trump camp. Israel played a huge part in the election of Trump and no one even mentions it. How can that be?  
No nation should be allowed to interfere in our process, not Russia, not Israel, not the Saudis, not England,... no one.

The Left and Israel

Just this morning, I've seen three pieces on her handling of the word "occupation"

Hit Jobs
"Cohen is still an undisputed genius at punking a variety of targets, from the ultra-gullible to seemingly savvy. But if “Who Is America?” is worth any praise, then what are we to say about the techniques of Project Veritas, the conservative, undercover operation that has tried to infiltrate and expose liberal bias among news organizations and community organizers? 
What Cohen does is not all that different."
Well, one big difference is the reaction, when James O'Keefe's work first hit, the D's immediately caved, Acorn was killed, Planned Parenthood took a hit. We'll see if there are any policy changes or resignations over this.

O'Keefe's work was very one-sided and was meant to bring Ds down. Baron's may be targeted at Rs, but at this point seems mostly just for laughs. I mean Sarah Palin and Dick Chaney aren't going anywhere. It would be like O'keefe hitting Dennis Kucinich.

O'Keefe's donors were mostly hidden from view we know Baron's was Showtime. It sounds like the people in this case had to sign releases. Did O'Keefe's?

Overall, O'Keefe and Veritas have been quite a bit dirtier, more political, and targeted.

Russian Hacking

Economics
"we find that administering testosterone increases men’s preference for status brands, compared to brands of similar perceived quality but lower perceived status. Furthermore, testosterone increases positive attitudes toward positional goods when they are described as status-enhancing, but not when they are described as power-enhancing or high in quality"




7.16.2018

Monday

Cool Stuff
Electric Bike - made by a rider

Required Reading
Jeffrey St. Clair's posts are always filled with good stuff.

On "Truth"
On Liars, Politics, Michiko Kakutani, Martin Jay, and Hannah Arendt
 from the comments: "if establishing your position requires 2996 words and the opposition needs 29, guess who wins the political debate?"  
Yep...... "Benghazi".... "Lock Her Up".... sigh....
Glenn Greenwald on Twitter - Remind me never to argue with GG.
The death of truth: how we gave up on facts and ended up with Trump  The government lied to the Boomers about Vietnam, drugs, and a host of other things when they were young. Now they mostly believe Fox News. Can you say "brainwashed".

Israel - Palestine
 Trump Turns to Gaza as Middle East Deal of the Century Collapses

Trump
Lots of theories on why he's going to Russia.

The D's
Diane Feinstein - Good News!! Now you California D's..... Vote for Kevin De León. All the old, establishment, military-minded D's all need to go.
De León won on a platform of renewable energy, comprehensive immigration reform, a $15 minimum wage and Medicare for all. Stuff we need


'via Blog this'

7.11.2018

Wednesday #2

Fucking Amazing












Netanyahu offers to end the US Sanctions on Russia !? 
How the fuck can he do that !?
Forget Trump-Putin. Trump is Netanyahu's bitch.  

Wednesday


American Capitalism
Yes, your leg is wet. No, it's not raining - A pretty good summary of why Americans voted for Trump. Not that Trump was going to fix anything, it's just that American Capitalism has pushed its workers to the brink and our corporate overlords, the Rich, the R's and D's, and the Media, weren't helping or even listening. Trump looked like he was an outsider, he wasn't, sounded like he was listening, he wasn't, and threw out enough bullshit, and it was all bullshit, to convince the people he could fix it. So.. they voted for him and now we'll being paying the price for years.  

Misc

Stumbling and Mumbling on Libertarians


Trump
BS On NATO
BS'ing his Followers

The D's
Dianne Feinstein needs to go. Old, rich, establishment, war party D's need to get the hell out of the way. They are as much of a problem as Trump and the crazy R's.

Sign of the High Times.
How to Hide Weed From Your Kids. The people targeted by this article read "How to hide weed from you parents" many years ago.

MAGA
More like Making America Irrelevant. BMW to Move US Production to China: More "Winning" Coming, $200B Trump Response  BMW's moving production out of the US. China buying oil from Iran. The EU has to be questioning whether the US is the friend it really needs. Even the Canadians are pissed at us!? We're basically a rogue nation in the UN. Can the dollar keep it's place as the reserve currency?  Fine job MAGA idiots!

Media and Propaganda
From Naked Capitalism:
It must look bad for the Dumb One and The Right in general. Drudge is already doing damage control.



















7.10.2018

Tuesday

Crooks 
Credit card scammers

Dumb Questions
Should You Raid Your Retirement Account to Buy a House? - No. 

Israel-Palestine
The Trump-Kushner Delusion on Palestine
Israel acknowledges US-Saudi nuclear deal but presents its 'red lines':  A lot of crazy here.... Israel drawing "red lines" for the US? The US helping the Saudis with their nuclear ambitions? What could go wrong with that? Weren't most of those 9-11 folks Saudis? The Saudis have signed the Non-Proliferation of Nuclear Weapons treaty but the Israelis haven't.

Health Care and Bull-Shitters
The Trump administration finds another way to throw sand in Obamacare's gears, at patients' expense. Gosh,.. I remember way back before the election, when candidate Trump said he had a plan, ready-to-go, to give everyone "wonderful health care". What the hell happened to that guy?

7.09.2018

Monday

Interesting
Found in the muck of a drained river.
Heatwave unveils ancient settlements in Wales

Scary
Survival of the Richest


'Murica - We used to be the good guys.
U.S. Opposition to Breast-Feeding Resolution Stuns World Health Officials

Propaganda
This Is What Modern War Propaganda Looks Like 
"Whenever you see the sudden emergence of an attractive media campaign that is sympathetic to the plight of civilians in a resource-rich nation unaligned with the western empire, you are seeing propaganda. When that nation is surrounded by other nations with similar human rights transgressions and yet those transgressions are ignored by that same media campaign, you are most certainly seeing propaganda. When that nation just so happens to already be the target of starvation sanctions and escalated covert CIA ops, you can bet the farm that you are seeing propaganda."

Trump and the R's
America the Loser - I remember when R's didn't want "the government" picking winners and losers.  
Shibboleths (repost from 2011)
Epistemic Sunk Costs and the Extraordinary, Populist Delusions of Crowds?


The Irving Fisher "Stocks have reached what looks like a permanently high plateau." Award
"Everybody knows Donald Trump is entertaining, but you cannot become president of the basis of being a good entertainer," said Fleischer. "You have to run for president on issues that make people say I can see that person being the president, he acts presidential and the birther movement will not be the cause that propels Donald Trump forward it actually will be the cause that holds him back." from Sarah Palin 'Appreciates' Donald Trump's 'Birther' Questions



7.07.2018

Saturday


Making America Irrelevant
Trump sidelined as UN Security Council plus Germany Meet Iran’s Rouhani in Vienna
Moreover, think of it. This meeting involves three of America’s closest military and economic allies–Britain, France and Germany– having been pushed by Trump into the same corner with Russia and China in seeking to have better relations with Iran. I guess Trump has taught *them* a lesson.

Government of the Corporation
A good video on this page. America Celebrates Lateral Move From Monarchy To Corporate Rule

The Capitalist Paradise 
U.S. workers sure aren't treated very well compared to the rest of the world.   
Is it great to be a worker in the U.S.? Not compared with the rest of the developed world. 

Socialism
Why Is Nancy Pelosi So Afraid of Socialism? 
“They want single-payer health care, a higher minimum wage, and greater protections for unions.”
Democratic-Socialists need to work harder to redefine socialism. Most mid-west Americans, especially the older folks, see anything with the words "socialist" or "socialism" as the first step to communism. The Social-D's need a Frank Lutz on their team. 

Interesting
The fallacy of obviousness 
".. what people are looking for – rather than what people are merely looking at – determines what is obvious."

Propaganda
The Fox News Mascot. The Rude Pundit nails it again.
"Essentially, we don't have a president. ...  No, that's not a goddamn president. That's a mascot. We have a Philly Phanatic out there, getting the crowd pumped up, to distract from the vile, awful things done by the vile, awful people who work for this vile, awful man."


7.03.2018

Early Week


That Liberal Press.
Mexico election: Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador claims victory
Pointing to Lopez Obrador's nationalism, stubborn nature and put-downs of rivals, critics have compared him to US President Donald Trump. Others fear his ambitious proposals for government programmes, without tax increases, may push the country down the path of crisis-hit Venezuela. 
They just assume it's Venezuela's socialist policies that led to their economic crisis when US driven sanctions look like the main driver to me. Also, maybe the left has a chance in the world today. 

Medicare For All
The Best Health Care in the world? The US is not even close to the rest of the major countries. We pay the most and are at the bottom of the list in overall ratings















Middle East
What's the big deal... of the century? Welcome to Trump's Pax Americana in the Middle East.  Like the Trump trade wars have been showing the rest of the world they should have a balance to US financial power, his minion's work on the Israeli occupation looks like it will finally show the world the US is not an even handed player in the conflict. I guess, maybe the rest of the world already knows this so maybe it will open the eyes of the American people.


Good Design is Simple














US Media Blind Spot
Promoting human rights around the world while ignoring the Israeli occupation. It’s time for Tom Friedman to face the contradictions of liberal Zionism, and move on


US Media Blind Spot #2
I didn't see anything on CNN about this. China issues warning for citizens traveling to US

6.30.2018

The Trump Era

The Trump Era

Trump is turning the US into an enemy the rest of the world can unite against. From 'American First' to 'America Alone'
The Peace Deal That is All Israel
 After Trump, there will be no more “peace process”… just as there will be no American credibility in international relations.
Oh, and Israel is Still killing people in Gaza. A kid 12 years old. Israel is really separating kids from their families.
North Korea may still making nuclear fuel.
Iran vs The Trump regime - Iran's statement is more on-the-money than the Trump mouthpiece.
Pompeo on Wednesday claimed that protesters in Iran are fed up with the country's leadership. 
"The people of Iran are tired of the corruption, injustice, and incompetence from their leaders," Pompeo said in a statement. "We condemn the government’s same futile tactics of suppression, imprisonment of protestors, and the denial of Iranians’ frustrations." Zarif’s response to Pompeo titled “Those who live in glass houses should not throw stones,” said, “The U.S. government is squandering its citizens’ resources, whether it‘s adventurism in Iraq and Afghanistan, its blind support for Israel and other terror-sponsoring regimes, or its wasteful expansion of its nuclear arsenal: it will only add to the suffering of the people of America.”
Trump’s top economic adviser says deficit ‘is coming down rapidly,’ contradicting virtually all available data. File this under wishful thinking. Kudlow's believed this budget fantasy for years.


6.25.2018

It's Monday

Good Stuff
Rolling Stone interview with Johnny Depp. Depp is out there. It's a good thing he's rich and famous (well maybe rich) or he'd probably be dead by now.
Summer Jam at Watkins Glen


Energy
Power ShiftFracking changed everything. Now what?


Middle East
The Defiance that Launched Gaza’s Flaming Kites Cannot be Extinguished
Palestinians encaged in Gaza, denied entry and exit by Israel via land, sea and air for more than a decade, know that life there is rapidly becoming unsustainable.

On the road to Eurasia, Eastasia, Oceania, and MAGA.
The whole world sees it: Trump is doing lasting damage to the global order that made the U.S. a superpower.  Trump's and his followers see MAGA as putting America in a position where it can bully the rest of the world to follow America's rules. I wonder how they'll feel when Trumps antics force the rest of the world to realign to balance against MAGA's bullying tactics.  

MAGA
1 big thing ... The unraveling: An angry American weekend
Trump’s way — the lying, the name-calling, the nastiness — is quickly becoming the American way for many of his friends and foes. This, in turn, numbs people to the truly outrageous, and hardens the tribal instincts of political combatants. This will get worse before it gets better. 
Though this is Trump's way, it has also been the way of Right-wing media from Rush to Fox News. They are why we have Trump. The left may be waking up.


6.24.2018

Sunday Morning

Regarding Civility in Uncivil Times


American Capitalism
One of the biggest such deals ever, happening now: How investors allow a group of PE firms to extract $3.75 billion from a company after they’d already extracted billions. Take the money and Run!
The ‘Soft Coup’ and the Attack on the Brazilian People 
"What has been deemed a ‘soft coup’ in Brazil in 2016 stems from the same motive—the protection of corporate, foreign, and imperialist interests over the interests of the poor and working people and their right to self-determination—but comes wrapped in more palatable packaging that makes it easier to deny the violation of democracy."
The Class War the Rich Won And the End Of NeoLiberal Capitalism
"The first thing capitalists do when they “win” the markets is take their profits and use them to buy government so that they can end free markets (our markets are nowhere near competitive or free). Free markets, to anyone who has won, are a threat."

Medicare for All: How to sell it to conservatives.  from The Conservative Case for Universal Healthcare
"If we switched to single payer or another form of socialized medicine, we would actually have more money to spend on even more useless military hardware."

Krauthammer and Death



6.21.2018

Thursday

TeaBagistan
New laws in Indiana 
Gas tax going up.



  
No more vertical license plates on your Harley. 




No more Abortions? 




Indiana Republicans - Not quite the Taliban but getting there.

American Capitalism
Doing your Taxes. The Tax software folks trying to confuse consumers so they don't use Free File while lobbying (paying) congress to not offer a more comprehensive free tax return service. Put a couple of CEOs in jail and this kind of crap would stop.

6.20.2018

Wednesday

Insanity
‘HOW THE WORLD WENT MAD’: A DIAGNOSIS OF THE CONFUSING, TOPSY-TURVY WORLD OF PRESIDENT DONALD TRUMP 
"What if Trump is the new definition of sanity and it is I who am in fact mad. The line between sanity and insanity has been a skipping rope throughout history, pulling people in and out of it. Gays, lesbians, and women have only recently escaped their 19th-century diagnosis as perverts and hysterics. The Trump/Pence victory signaled another swing of the rope."

Security
NSA Posters



Rs and Ds
No More Mr Nice nails it. 
"America is not primarily a conservative heartland that's besieged by a left-leaning minority living on the coasts and using elite status to tyrannize the majority. The major fault line in this country is between Republicans and everyone else in America. I'm not saying that this is a liberal country (although it is on a number of issues), but it is not a conservative country. Republican dominance of our government at the federal and state levels is largely an artifact of electoral gamesmanship and a highly effective conservative propaganda machine that successfully demonizes Democrats; it doesn't reflect majority support for Republican policies. The GOP takes advantage of splits among the rest of us -- conservative/moderate, Democrat/independent, voter/non-voter -- to maintain control of America. The GOP also guilt-trips the media into believing that heartland whites are the only true Americans. But Republicans are the outliers."

The World
Fall of the American Empire
So Trump isn’t making America great again; he’s trashing the things that made us great, turning us into just another bully — one whose bullying will be far less effective than he imagines.
I agree. Trump's trade wars, UN Bashing, Euro Bashing, and all around bullying must have our allies thinking maybe they shouldn't just rely on America. I'd expect at least some effort to create a currency to compete with the dollar, maybe some shifting alliances, the Europeans pulling closer together or maybe closer to Russia? Asia pulling closer to China? Trump is cracking the Pax Americana world.



6.18.2018

Fox News: Telling old people what they want to hear.

Every other news site has a story about the Trump administration's ongoing family separation policy as their main headline except Fox. Here's the Fox News front page this morning.
















They do have a small headline in the top left.

 






"Migrant Youth Shelter" that's great.

6.17.2018

From the Last Week or So

Tech


Politics
  • Rs vs Ds - R's always get a pass on national security issues. D's compensate by trying to be R's when in power.
  • Cults - i have to agree with No More Mister Nice.
"The Republican Party has been a rage cult for years. Now it's a rage personality cult."
"Confusing politics with corporate profits and the state of the economy is not the ideal way to invest. The noise created by the president has been a constant backdrop to the expansion of the U.S. economy that began before Trump was elected and has continued ever since. Until that changes, most of what Trump does will mean little to financial markets."
Maybe, but I lean to the "just wait'. If Trump keeps blowing up long held conventions, something has to give.
"Trump is an outlier, then, more in degree than in kind. He’s what happens when transactional philanthropy is taken to its logical conclusion, divorced entirely from any kind of genuine generosity. But the broader phenomenon is much bigger than Trump and has long infected almost every cranny of the philanthropic world."
Hopefully, the Trump administration is "Peak American Corrupitalism"
"There is no longer a way to claim America’s internal intelligence agency, the FBI, did not play a role in the 2016 election. There is only to argue which side they favored and whether they meddled via clumsiness, as a coordinated action, or as a chaotic cluster of competing pro- and anti- Clinton/Trump factions inside the Bureau. And that’s the tally before anyone brings up the FBI’s use of a human informant inside the Trump campaign, the FBI’s use of both FISA warrants and pseudo-legal warrantless surveillance against key members of the Trump team, the FBI’s use of opposition research from the Steele Dossier, and so on. 
The good news is the Deep State seems less competent than we originally feared. But even if one fully accepts the IG report’s conclusion that all this— and there’s a lot — was not intentional, at a minimum it makes clear to those watching ahead of 2020 what tools are available and the impact they can have. While we continue to look for the bad guy abroad, we have already met the enemy and he is us."
  • Things we've done. When I was a kid in the 60s I thought we were "The Good Guys", now I'm not so sure.