“Before now, I had never really understood how the 1930s could happen. Now I do. All one needs are fragile economies, a rigid monetary regime, intense debate over what must be done, widespread belief that suffering is good, myopic politicians, an inability to co-operate and failure to stay ahead of events.” Martin Wolf.
Recall This: Gov. Walker raised $30.5 million - 66% of that from out-of-state - to his opponent’s $3.9 million – only 26% from out-of-state. Guess who won. Welcome to the brave new world of one dollar, one vote.
Pieces In Our Time: A 'NATO' missile ploughed into a house in Afghanistan's Logar province, wounding two civilians (according to NATO) or killing 17 civilians including women and children as well as six or seven Taliban 'militants' who were nearby (according to Al Jezeera and the Afghan government). Elsewhere in the US war on nearly everybody, CIA drones continue to target rescuers responding to drone strikes, and funerals for those killed earlier by drones (in at least one case hitting a mosque, killing 3 civilian worshipers)– in Afghanistan, Pakistan, and Yemen (where a US drone killed between 8 and 26 civilians in the middle of May)
Null And Void: There is no evidence in the entire history of capitalism to support austerity as a remedy for economic conditions similar to today's. Europe's leaders know – or should know – that their policies will not work. So why do they persist?
Imagine America As A Dictatorship…. Oh, wait... is this that thing they call satire?
Be Afraid: Forget the melting ice, the rising seas, the hurricanes, droughts, floods – that stuff is just the prelude. The main event, within a generation or two, will be the collapse of earth's entire ecosystem. 22 top scientists have combined to issue a paper in Nature that a tipping point could be reached this century that would push the biosphere into a swift and irreversible change with disastrous results for mankind. No, it won't be televised.
Quit While You Are Ahead: The headline asked “Is America Healing Fast Enough?”, which was two words too long.
Don't Ask, Don't Tell: The Chinese government wants “foreign governments” to stop releasing data on China's air quality. The American Embassy in Beijing posts data via Twitter, from an air sensor at the embassy. Friends don't let friends expose bad stuff.
Hotel California: Getting bailouts from the EU/ECB/IMF has, for Ireland, Greece, Portugal and Spain, been “like a roach motel” - impossible to leave. So says PIMCO's Mohamed El-Erian
Tell Me A Story... Crossroads GPS, a tax-exempt front group that does not have to reveal who it is or where it gets its money, is spending millions on a new campaign to spread lies about the national debt, without mentioning that the main reasons for the growth of the debt are the Bush tax cuts and the Bush wars. Even with these handicaps, under Obama government spending as a portion of GDP keeps dropping. If you like the way big money is perverting the United States electoral process, send your 'Thank You ' notes to Chief Justice Roberts, c/o any big corporation.
Don't Sweat The Details: Exxon Mobil says we should stop worrying about things like health and safety and global warming and ecological degradation, chuck the regulations and let the professionals get to work. We'll find out eventually whether we need to regulate things.
100 A Day: We've been bad. Spectacularly bad, judging by the 30,000 secret wiretap warrants the government gets every year. Wonder what good all this snooping into the citizenry is doing, and for whom.
Unmentionable: Ten minutes of thought will convince anyone but a banker that Wall Street's financial wizards most certainly have found a way to make billions handling the drug trade's money. The profits are not smuggled out of the country as $10s and $20s– what would they do with bales of bills in Cartagena?
The Parting Shot:
The path leads on…