Gin and Tacos on the March to war with Iran:  Gin and Tacos - In Plain Sight

Ian Welsh on the same: How Important Is The Drone Attack On The Saudi Oil Field?
"If Trump acts like an idiot and attacks Iran, of course, this will turn out to be a big deal, but otherwise it isn’t in and of itself.

Nor should anyone be crying for the Saudis. Assume it is true the attack was launched by Yemeni Houthis with some Iranian support, remember that Saudi Arabia has been bombing and deliberately starving Yemen for years. They’re at war, and if the Houthis have a bit of support from Iran, what of it? Saudi Arabia itself has supported many organizations which have attacked other nations, possibly including Al-Qaeda and 9/11.

If you bomb the shit out of a country and they manage to get in one hit against you, boo-hoo.

Nor should America care, since Saudi Arabia is a terrible ally who has done more harm to American interests than any other “ally” in the world, with only the possible exception of Israel."

The Fox News website has been very quiet about the Saudi drone attack since the first day. I don't watch Fox so they may be hammering it for their old white viewers but the website is pretty quiet. Seems odd?

US supports Saudi 'right to defend itself': Pompeo - Dragging out the language Israel has used to bomb the shit out of the Palestinians for years.


I wrote this on Wednesday
I'm pretty sure our media folk will spend the next few days talking about the elite, ultimate-insider, "legendary", media person who just passed away instead of the dumb orange one, the coming war with Iran, or the plight of the common folk out here in Teabaggistan.
but I haven't really heard too much about her. Still, she is the poster child of our current media mess.

Media - The Propaganda Site

A lot in the news today, Israeli elections, Looming war with Iran, Trump's insider case so Fox headlines, Kavanaugh, Chicago gang-Bangers, CNN Bad, Hollywood Bad. The cult has no clue.

Fascism Today

Read this about Netanyahu,  THE ISRAELI ELECTIONS, TAKE TWO, and think about how US evangelicals adore him and how a republican congress supported him over a US president.

Also, Netanyahu is not the least oppressive choice available. Palestinian-Israeli Joint List Gains Seats, as Netanyahu’s Demonization Backfires

The crumbled throne - On the results and what may follow.

On that "Only Democracy in the Middle East"


The rise of Nairobi’s concrete tenement jungle - These aren't all that different from what my kid is living in in Carmel, Indiana, at about $1,500 a month. They do have a dryer instead of a line.

American Crapitalism

Martin Wolf: why rigged capitalism is damaging liberal democracy
Economies are not delivering for most citizens because of weak competition, feeble productivity growth and tax loopholes




Average is Over: GDP Edition - and if you exclude the debt-fueled housing bubble, there hasn't been a year of above average growth since the Clinton years.

Saudi vs Yemen

Pompeo Manipulatively blames Iran as Saudi Arabia loses 58% of Oil Production to Houthi Attack

US intel suspects Iranian cruise missiles hit Saudi oil facilities from Iraq base

Within the last two weeks, I've read that the Saudis might cut production because they need oil prices to rise, that the world was turning against the Saudi war on Yemen, that Netanyahu was in the election fight of his life and almost everyone was expecting something special to boost his chances, that Israel was freaking out because Trump was getting too close to negotiating with Iran, and Trump has been flailing a bit more than normal at home.... and now, BAM!!, right on cue, an attack that helps all of the above. Imagine that.

They'll find an Iranian passport in the drone wreckage any minute now.

Our Elite

.. or I guess in this case, "R" elite - Frank Schaeffer Shreds Falwell, Jr.: 'Just Another Con Artist Grifter Cashing In - Can't argue with that.

American Corruptialism

A $5 billion fine won’t fix Facebook. Here’s what would. We can do better than fine companies that break the law. - I think putting a few executives in real prisons would help.

Elite Corrupitalism

Jeremy Corbyn could leak classified US intelligence to Russia and Iran if he becomes prime minister, think tank warns Donald Trump - Man,... they are pulling out all the stops against Corbyn. First anti semitism, now he could leak to Russia or Iran. What will they come up with next?




StoneKettle Station on 911 - Scabs - Damn good stuff right there....

Trump, Bolton, and Tucker and Fox

Read the paragraph below about Bolton working in right-wing Republican administrations since Nixon. Now remember that two days ago Tucker Carlson called Bolton and "man of the left" and Fox News chose to put Carlson's quote near the top of it's front page.

Who is really "Fake News"  (from  StoneKettle Station on Trump-Bolton)
"Bolton began as an intern in Spiro Agnew’s office. He was a vocal supporter of the Vietnam War – but, like many conservatives, actively avoided going to war himself, saying, "I confess I had no desire to die in a Southeast Asian rice paddy. I considered the war in Vietnam already lost." He later explained his comments by suggesting that he would have gone to Vietnam if only liberals hadn’t “made certain we would not prevail and I had no great interest in going there to have Teddy Kennedy give it back to the people I might die to take it away from. ” Eventually Bolton wormed his way into the Reagan Administration and was involved in everything from the “War on Drugs” to Iran-Contra. And like Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, and all the other foul distillate from those years, Bolton returned when George W. Bush took office and he was right back to the same old tricks."

Israel vs US

Israel accused of planting mysterious spy devices near the White House - Why do you need to spy when you own most of Congress, Trump, and the VP? Probably related to the Trump-Bolton bust-up, and the Israeli election.


found here [Econbrowser]

The Great Democracies

The Dogs in the Street Know - English and American foundations are cracking.


Is Killing Peasants Protecting America’s Interests?


Jeffrey St. Clair on Biden - I agree 100%
+ By almost every standard Biden is a worse candidate than Hillary Clinton: he’s frailer, dumber & has a more tarnished record. His saving grace, as far as I can tell, is that Biden is so boring, so lacking in inspiration, that he can’t even inspire people to hate him as passionately as they did HRC.



Media - BS

Not a word on the Fox News front page about Bolton except this.

I wonder if Bolton will now play a liberal when he returns to Fox Propaganda? 

Media - The Liberal Media Isn't #1723

NPR framing health care questions in the conservative voice.

Trump, Bolton, and Israel

Trump suddenly seems less supportive of Netanyahu and Israel. Something has changed? Did Netanyahu piss Trump off? Maybe Trump can't stand Netanyahu's power and wants to cut him down a little? Epstein? Something? I'd expect some event to pull us closer to Israel before the Israelis go to the polls.


Israeli PM Netanyahu’s Himalayan Miscalculation on Iran: Bringing China into the Mideast

China Defies Trump on Iran Big time with $400 bn Belt-and-Road Investment, 5000 Red Army Troops


The Secret Files of the Master of Modern Republican Gerrymandering - I don't think democracy can work in an age of big data, social media, and peak marketing unless we make major changes.

From the always good Stumbling and MumblingON TORY PARADOXES
This leaves the Tories with a problem. If wealth and power are concentrated, how can you create widespread support for the party that defends the existing economic order?

The answer is to change the subject
Yep. Here in the US you should read "Tories" as "The Two Parties". They have no answers, well, no answers that can satisfy both the small set of corporate donors and the mass of voters so they set policy for the donors and change the subject for the voters to things like abortion, guns, immigration, race, etc. 

The Mythical Market

People Are Homeless Because of the Failure of Our Capitalist Economy

Free-Market types preach that allowing markets to run free of any human/government interference is the answer to almost every problem. I agree that markets work to solve a lot of economic issues but one thing they don't work very well at is smoothing wealth and income inequality. Wealth tends to accumulate at the top and there is no market in the world going to fix that. It takes government taxing away some from those at the top and helping those at the bottom.


Capitalism Requires Loss Of Money And Power

Trump's Sharpie

16 of our readers' funniest responses to Trump’s Sharpie-marked hurricane-warning map

Mike Pence and Jerry Falwell, Jr.

'What are we going to do Mike?': Trump's victory posed problems for Pence and his wife, new book says
So Pence is a bad businessman 
"The Pences may not have needed the financial help if the couple, years before, hadn’t lost nearly $1 million Pence had inherited from his father."
Indecisive and easily manipulated
"LoBianco describes Pence as indecisive, but great at executing others' decisions. A "pleaser," Pence is kept on track by his “bulldog” wife and is easily manipulated by staff, according to the book."
Can be bought
"Most notably, he credits Paul Singer, the hedge-fund billionaire who Pence had been courting for a potential presidential bid, with convincing him to agree to change the law. 
and is OK with Trump being a dick.
Pence’s comfort level was severely tested by the release, during the campaign, of the Access Hollywood recording in which Trump had bragged about grabbing women’s genitals
He's the best reason not to impeach Trump.
also,.... speaking of hypocritical, religious twerps.

Whistleblowers out Falwell's Liberty University as a grifty, multibillion-dollar personality cult

I get the feeling Falwell's world is falling apart and he's scrambling as fast as he can to keep it together.


Sunday - Misinformation Section

Fox News when Obama was going to negotiate with the Taliban

The whole article and videos here: Fox & Friends Hosts Savage Obama For Negotiating With Terrorist, Anti-Women Taliban By Noah Rothman Jun 19th, 2013, 8:44 am

Fox News when Trump was going to negotiate with the Taliban... not a word on the front page.

How do they get to call themselves "News"?




China Defies Trump on Iran Big time with $400 bn Belt-and-Road Investment, 5000 Red Army Troops

Israel and US Politics

‘Miriam Adelson: Sara Netanyahu said it would be my fault if Iran nuked Israel’
Adelson went on, “There were phone calls to America with screams. When there were screams, when I’d hear a high pitched voice, I’d simply put the receiver down. You could hear the screams that way too. When the screaming died down — it could be 5, 10 minutes — then I’d pick up the receiver again. I wouldn’t listen to the screams, okay? It wasn’t pleasant. But out of respect for the prime minister, and it was mostly from her end, I simply didn’t respond. I didn’t answer.”
Note that the person doing the screaming and demanding action is the wife of the Israeli Prime minister and the person being screamed at (and her husband) have given Trump and the Rs over 200 million dollars in campaign contributions over the last few years. (100m in 2016, 113m in 2018) 
How much democracy can you afford? 

Media - Propaganda

COURT SLAMS CLINTON EMAIL COVER-UP - Laying the groundwork for Fox News stories that will wind up the base in 2020.


How Misinformation Spreads—and Why We Trust It - Drawing the line between misinformation, propaganda, BS, and outright lies is difficult but how could an article on misinformation not mention talk-radio, Fox News, or Trump's outright lies and BS? Still worth the read in sort of a sterile, non-filling way.

Misinformation #2

What a crappy headline. Despite being a pretty good summary of the issues, it runs with the crappy scare headline  "Social Security: Here's Why Cutting Benefits Is a Necessary Evil"

The article includes a good info on the real issues, the fix, and the reason it can't be fixed.
The Reality - Social Security is not in that bad of shape. (from the article)
  • Social Security can't go bankrupt.
  • Social Security's survival is virtually guaranteed
The Real Issue - Earnings over $132,900 are not taxed so earnings not taxed to support SS have exploded.
  • Between 1983 and 2016, the amount of earnings escaping the payroll tax nearly quadrupled from a little over $300 billion to approximately $1.2 trillion.
The Real Fix - Tax Earnings over $132,900
The Real Reason it can't be Fixed.
  • There's also the not-so-small issue that Republicans in Congress won't support added taxation on Social Security.
With all that, why wasn't the headline,
  "Social Security easily fixed by voting the god-damned R's out of office."



War - Middle East

Pompeo to Lebanon: Get rid of 2nd Iranian missile factory or face US-backed Israeli attack. It sure seems like the US and Israel do a hell of a lot more war than the Iranians. WTF!?

How the U.S. Shattered the Middle East

Live from Teabagistan

The roots of Trump and the Cult

Tweet of The Year

On Trump's Hurricane could hit Alabama, sharpie-edit.


I keep saying this........ It is not the Cult of Trump it is the Cult of Fox News-Talk Radio Conservatism. Trump is just the current leader. Past leaders include Sarah Palin, Rick Santorum, Michele Bachmann, Mike Huckabee, Glenn Beck, Bill O, etc. Trump is just the current leader and the first one to make it past the finish line in both the republican primary and general election.  
You can't fix or even battle a problem if you can't define it.


Successful capitalism requires not just growth but also legitimacy. It’s not accident that, from the late 19th century onwards, almost all capitalist states developed degrees of redistributive taxation and welfare states. These were necessary to buy off public discontent. Something similar might be needed today. High inequality, crumbling public services and the inflicting of uncertainty and harassment upon millions of residents risk undermining public support for the existing order. In tackling these, Labour will help shore up the legitimacy of some sort of capitalist system.
I think he's right. When any system pushes the common folk down too hard they revolt. We've seen this recently with Trump and Brexit. The smart capitalists realize they need to throw the folks a few bones to keep them happy. We seem to have forgot this over the last 30-40 years.

Felix Salmon: 1 big thing: Disintegration
The bottom line: The postwar economic order was built on ever-increasing integration, and there is no precedent in modern history for how — or even whether — the global economy can cope with its opposite.


David Horsey is always good.  Still, this should also include a white evangelical woman waving a bible at some young folks.

Speaking of a white woman waving a bible.  My Son’s Freshman Orientation At Virginia Tech Was Full Of Leftist Propaganda - My gawd...the stupid hurts..  Penny Nance and people like her, need to be kept as far as possible from the levers of power in this country.

Found at "The Big Picture" but original here: Bruce Mehlman

For the last few years, I've been claiming that anyone with political history at a national level is going to hard to elect. There's just too much baggage available for the opposition. HRC was the poster child of too much baggage but McCain, Kerry, Dole, and Bush1 all had a lot of political history and were beaten by relatively unknown people. We live in an age of celebrity and wealth so a wealthy, unknown with no known political baggage has a much better chance than a known politician in a two person race.

Media - Whiners

New York Times Columnists vs. the Haters: A brief history of overreaction. - Good article. This reminds me of high school when the sports stars and rich kids got to run the place while the smart hippies, dopers, musicians, and artists made fun of them.

Medicare for All

+ Jim Naureckas: “I’d love to see someone conduct a poll: “If you were already getting free public health insurance, would you like to have the option to pay thousands of dollars a year to get the same kind of coverage from a for-profit insurer?”   ---  found here Roaming Charges" also the shot below.



Road Side America

John Margolies’ Photographs of Roadside America

Labor Day

From StoneKettle Station: Labor day 2019
"The simple truth of the matter is nowadays we Americans live a pretty damned good life.  And we live that good life because since 1919 we’ve put systems and laws and regulations in place to improve life for all of us.  Programs like Social Security and Medicare have a direct and measurable effect on how long we live, and how well. Regulations governing working conditions and workplace safety have a direct and measurable effect on the probability that we’ll survive to retirement.  Laws that prevent the rich from owning a whole town, or abusing workers, or turning them into indentured servants, or hiring children at pauper’s wages to maintain the machines in their bare feet, have directly benefitted all but the most greedy few. 
And those systems were put in place because Labor fought for them, sometimes, often, at the cost of their very lives."

Data Visualization

Interpreting uncertainty through data visualizations

Media - Fox

From the WP "We don’t work for you’: Fox News’s Neil Cavuto rebukes Trump for slamming network" - Yep, Trump doesn't realize,..  he works for Fox. Fox and far right media have been spreading their brand of conservative crazy for years. Trump just went along for the ride and became the temporary leader. They don't really need him, there are other cult leaders waiting in the wings.

Media - Fox #2

Lots in world news today, a hurricane heading our way, another big shooting, American allies the Saudis and UAE bombing prison in Yemen, Israel setting fire to Lebanese territory, US Bombing Syria, Brexit, Hong Kong, but only the hurricane is Fox-worthy

Libertarian - AIE Crap

Libertarians are the very best at pushing out articles/thoughts that pick one small slice of a policy or argument and hammer it to fit the entire world. These two are good examples.

The Myth of American Middle-Class Stagnation - This is picture perfect libertarian crap. Yep, what the article claims may be correct though he may have cherry picked a few items, we don't really know. Even if it is a good representative sample, it ignores a hell of a lot of pretty important stuff the affect the working class.

More workers today on on their own for medical, retirement and education costs which have all have all exploded in cost since 1973. State, local, sales and other hidden taxes that hit the lower and middle class more have increased since we've cut taxes on the wealthy at the Federal level. How has full / part time work changed? What about temporary workers? Energy costs? Fuel and vehicle costs? How have public services changed? There's a lot of stuff out the that affect the working class and one smug post from a libertarian about Sears catalog crap is not meaningful in any way.

The Anatomy of a Moral Panic - This is more projection. I agree it exists but they get "Liberal" in the first line so you know which group to hammer on. Still, I think the top few groups this would apply to are Fox News, Conservative Media, Rs in Congress, and White Christian Muricans.
"These include but are not limited to the following: reporting rumor, anecdote, hearsay, and accusation as though they are facts; making quantitative claims without specific figures to support them or with figures that turn out to be false or misleading; media reporting that what other outlets are saying is the entire story; a particular kind of rhetoric and use of certain tropes (such as medical metaphors or apocalyptic imagery and language); having the same incident or story recycled; claims of the existence of a conspiracy without any actual people being named; moralistic language aimed at an unpopular or identifiable minority group. Conversely, if you find calm, serious argument and figures that can actually be supported, then you should take the argument seriously even if it turns out to be wrong."


Catching Up - Again....

MAGA - My Ass

What we’re seeing looks less like a collapse of globalization than a shift away from American-centric economic globalization, with other countries and organizations routing around the United States.

Media - The Liberal Media Isn't

NPR Has A Blob Problem


I'm guessing the Israelis blew it up and probably supplied the photo to Trump.


Biden and Feinstein both need to go.


For all you old Fox News watchers who want to return to the good old days, unions were a big part of it. Here's Ian Welsh with a good chart on why income inequality has been on the rise since the 80s.

Media - The Cult today

Lots in the news today, Amazon fires, Trump and Iran, Iraq/US/Israel, G7 follow-up.

The Fox front page is Epstein and hammering on Obama and Bernie.

Old white folks have no idea what's going on in the world.


Saturday Morning


The FCC has no idea how many people don’t have broadband access - Not a lot out here in Teabagistan. The country side is full of old, empty farm houses far from jobs and broadband.

Government Spending

It Is Criminal That We Aren’t Borrowing Trillions to Fix the Country and Save the Planet Right Now

About That Swamp?

Leaked emails suggest Trump's US interior secretary may have corrupt role in gas project

Just who got Trump’s farm bailouts?

Bibles but Not Textbooks: Trump’s Tariff Exemptions Pick Winners and Losers

Media - Fox

Fox is on it today 8-24-2019. Amazon Fires, G7 meeting, Trade Wars, The Market tanks, etc and here's the Fox News front page. The Cult has no idea what's going on in the world.

Trump and Russia?

Not really. For a look at who was really working for Trump, browse through these.

These must be the people who think Trump is a gift from god?

War - Middle East

It seems the country making the most war in the middle east is our #1 ally

US, Trump, and Israel

Bipartisan Support For Israel Is Dead. That’s A Good Thing - Yeah... Call me when our Congress doesn't vote about 99% in favor of the next big military aid package to Israel.


Even with Trump, could there be any candidates worse than Nikki Haley and Mike Pence? My Gawd!


Mid Week


Private Doctors on Medicare for all -  A good summary here. Should be written across the sky by all D candidates.
Myth No. 1: Medicare for All will cause Americans to lose their private health insurance coverage. 
Fact: yes, but it will be replaced by a comprehensive government-financed (not government-controlled) insurance plan that will cover all Americans and include all physicians. 
Your current physician from your private health insurance plan, will be part of the Medicare for All plan. There will be no out-of-pocket costs, no copays, no deductibles, no surprise billing or risk of medical bankruptcy.

American Crapitalism

A cozy alliance between insurers and law enforcement has turned the justice system into the industry’s hired gun and left innocent customers facing prison.

Media - The Liberal Media Isn't

State Media/CNN this morning. Beating the Military Spending Drum.

Media - The Liberal Media Isn't - #2

Media Blackout on Brazil’s Anti-Bolsonaro Protests: Why are New York Times and Guardian downplaying resistance to Brazil’s far-right president?

It seems the US media likes protests in other countries as long as those protesting are to the right of our media?

We report on protests in Taiwan or Venezuela but not Brazil or France. We let the Tea Party run wild with protests but clamped down hard on the Occupy protests.


If This Fox News Poll Is Right, Trump Is a Goner - Don't get your hopes up..... Fox doesn't do anything that isn't scripted to help the Rs.


A Well-Regulated Militia - One of the best, common sense set of gun policies I've seen.

US vs Iran

Iranian tanker sought by U.S. heading toward Greece - Maybe the rest of the world isn't going to play along?

US vs Venezuela

Scoop: Inside Trump's naval blockade obsession


From the Last Week


American Medical Association leaves coalition fighting 'Medicare for All - Probably not really good for "Medicare for all" as this looks like it leads to just another group opposing it.

Fuck-em. Vote Medicare for all!


MSM Smears Sanders For Saying MSM Smears Sanders - Corporate elite don't like those socialist types.

Found here: Tom Toles


With Jeffrey Epstein Dead, the Search Is on for Alleged Recruiter Ghislaine Maxwell
“Let me assure you that case will continue on against anyone who was complicit with Epstein,” and that “any co-conspirators should not rest easy,” Attorney General William Barr said Monday.
There might be a couple small fry types go down but I doubt we'll see any of the world elite fall.

Hypocritical  Bastards

US vs Iran

Here Are Five Lies About Iran That We Need to Refute to Stop Another Illegal War - You just can't believe a word they say.



US and Israel

Buying Politicians: Hoyer and 41 Democrats visit Israel on AIPAC-affiliated junket that violates ‘spirit as well as the letter of the law

The Many Lies That Iran Hawks Tell

Health Care

Health insurance companies are useless. Get rid of them
The truth is that private health insurers have contributed nothing of value to the American healthcare system. Instead, they have raised costs and created an entitled class of administrators and executives who are fighting for their livelihoods, using customers’ premium dollars to do so.

“Health insurers have been successful at two things: Making money and getting the American public to believe they’re essential,”

Mortality and morbidity in the 21st century


Your NRA donations at work. Document Shows NRA Money Helped Its Chief Search for a Personal Mansion


Saudis and UAE begin quiet talks with Tehran in epic Gulf somersault
The US-led coalition force has indeed been slow to take off because it is either spurned or ignored by most of the governments invited to join.

War - Money

America’s Indefensible Defense Budget
"If the United States faced acute threats, allocating 60 percent of the government’s unrestricted funds to defense might be necessary. We do not, but we still spend more on defense than the next eight largest spenders combined—China, Saudi Arabia, India, France, Russia, Britain, Germany, and Japan—and four of those countries are treaty allies. The disproportion has held for decades."


White House Considers September Roll-Out of Health Plan, DJ Says - They will probably make some minor changes so they have something to campaign on but candidate Trump said he had a plan ready to go. He's just full of bullshit.

World Economy

The Global Economy Lives in Wonderland Now


Saturday AM

Government Spending

Democrats gain absolutely nothing from focusing on deficit reduction, since any gains will simply be used by the next Republican government for more upper-class tax cuts. Dems don’t need to be as fiscally irresponsible as Republicans, but the next time they get the chance to govern they need to focus on making their programs as popular and as durable as possible, and if that means not accounting for every dime of spending that’s fine. 


Where rich millennials are moving

Also... Where the Jobs are going be    vs.     Where the R and D Voters are.

Media - Establishment Propaganda

CNN doing its best not to mention Sanders - Commentators: Who won the Democratic debate?

BBC - Declares Biden the winner. Shows a picture of Sanders underneath  the "Losers" headline even though the paragraph never mentions him.  - Democratic debate winners and losers from both nights

BBC is worried about one-liners. I'd prefer a longer explanation. Trump is good at one liners.

CNN’s Industry Spin Shows Need for Independent Debates
We desperately need serious, independently run debates, not over-the-top industry-friendly spectacles of the sort put on by CNN—and endorsed and gate-kept by the major parties.
Ian Welsh nails the Media - A Broken Media Is A Broken Society


Jeffrey Epstein Hoped to Seed Human Race With His DNA - I see articles like this as plants to make Epstein look like a super bond-villain type who was able to con all those rich folk because, well, he was a super bond villain. He conned us all !  In reality, he had a ton of cash and pretty much just fit in with the rest of our rich and powerful.. until he got caught. Now they need to distance themselves from him.

Line of the Day

It also illustrates the crying need for far more financial transparency. Where did Epstein get his money and where has it been going? There are many hints here that he’s some sort of grifting shakedown artist at the head of a largely phony financial empire, who also has a taste for blackmail and sexual assault. 
Just imagine if someday things should get decadent enough for someone like Epstein to become president of the United States.

Medicare for All

When Did You Realize American Health Care Was Broken?

Sheldon's Money

Sheldon Adelson is Trump and the R's largest donor and he and his wife really like Nikki Haley. They are not going to like Kellyanne's smart-assed "PENCE2020" reply.  NIKKI HALEY CRITICIZES DONALD TRUMP ON TWITTER.

US and Israel


Political Economy

Is Politics Getting to the Fed?  - Rs just don't play by the established rules.
The entire point of central-bank independence is to establish a credible monetary policy by insulating the relevant decision-makers from such influence. That is what we learned from the early 1980s, when Fed Chair Paul Volcker hiked the federal funds rate up to the level necessary to choke off inflation. The big difference, of course, is that President Ronald Reagan supported Volcker, whereas Trump is Powell’s chief antagonist. 
Powell’s challenge, then, is to maintain Volckerian discipline and independence in the face of growing political pressure. At the moment, his prospects for success are not great.

Who are you going to believe, me or the evidence of your own eyes?
Misleading statistics result in misguided policies. If governments think the economy is well on the road to recovery because that’s what GDP suggests, they might not take the strong policy measures needed to resuscitate the economy that they would take with metrics that inform on whether most of the population still feels in recession. If they do not have metrics on the extent of people’s economic insecurity, they may not take measures to bolster the safety net and social protection; they might even set about stripping away some social programmes.  
One reason the Great Recession morphed into a social and political crisis is that relying on GDP not only gave a false picture of the overall state of well-being, it contributed to the decline of trust in governments and experts, as people saw that their own situation was not improving despite the claim by the experts, based on certain official figures, that a recovery was underway. If we had had better metrics, including better measures of increases in people’s economic insecurity, we might have realised that the downturn was deeper than the GDP statistics indicated. And if that had been the case, perhaps governments would have responded more strongly to mitigate the negative impacts of the crisis.



The Radical Left Agenda - Still on top. Still important.


Our Elite 

Dershowitz needs to disappear from US media.

Health Care

I guess if I want to see good public healthcare in my lifetime, I'm going to have to move to another country.  WHY UNIVERSAL PUBLIC INSURANCE WILL BE BRUTALLY DIFFICULT TO ENACT

Life Lesson

Free Credit Advice - found in the comments here
  • Place a credit freeze on your accounts with the big three credit agencies. It works. Cost = $30 (total) and $10 for a temporary unfreeze when you need a lender to "see" your credit.
  • Get an IRS PIN for your taxes. Free. No one can file a return in your name or get your refund without it.
  • Get your credit report at least once per year. Free. Triple check it.
  • Do not ignore strange calls or letters about credit or accounts you never set up. Fix them.
  • Google your name and social security number every once in a while. Separately, of course. Free.

Israel vs Palestine

Israel dodges UN blacklist despite rise in Palestinian youth killed and injured in 2018

The Economy

Tax Cuts and Trump's 4% Growth. It ain't happening. A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to 4%


The “Existential Battle” Is for Control of the Democratic Party - It's a battle of Establishment Ds vs Populist Ds. The Rs had the same battle a few years ago. The Fox News cult won out and gave us Trump.

War - Playing games.

Tanker Seizures and the Threat to the Global Economy from Resurgent Imperialism
"The British seizure of the Iranian tanker off Gibraltar was illegal. There is no doubt of that whatsoever. The Iranian response to the seizure of its tanker in the Strait of Gibraltar, by the seizure of a British Tanker in the Strait of Hormuz, was also illegal, though more understandable as a reaction. The implications for the global economy of the collapse of the crucial international law on passage through straits would be devastating."

About That Swamp?

TRUMP, INC:  Trump Adviser Tom Barrack Pushed for Saudi Nuclear Deal — and Planned to Profit From It