Saturday, October 17, 2015
Religion is like a hobbyhorse; I don't mind you having one as long as you don't try to make me get on and ride with you. - Tristram Shandy, more or less.
Hasten, Slowly: The administration is reportedly considering delaying presenting the TPP to congress for ratification until after the 2016 election, when the political costs of selling out the American people during a “lame duck” session would be lower.
Morbidity and mortality: Since the 2008 financial crisis, central banks have printed up over $14 trillion dollars in IOUs on someone's labor or property. This didn't cure the problem, which was too much debt. It added to it, increasing global debt by 40%. Seems that adding more debt doesn't actually address the problem of too much debt. Good thing everybody pretends not to notice this.
Slide Effects: Germany authorities have told VW that their lackadaisical approach to covering up their emissions crimes won't do, and have ordered them to recall some 8.5 million cars and fix them. The government will then test the cars to make sure the repairs are effective. VW says it might be able to start the retrofits in late 2016. This is just Germany. The rest of the EU – where about a third of all VWs will need repair – will follow suit. In the US it remains to be seen if VW has enough money to spread around Washington to avoid this hassle.
Quoted: “You can pretty much name any intractable problem in the U.S. and you can trace it back to the money corrupting the political process. ...” Barry Ritholtz
Roster: Just so you remember, the Paul Ryan the crazies want for Speaker is the guy who wants to abolish the FDA, the National Institutes of Health, the Air Traffic Control System, gut Medicare and Medicaid while cutting taxes on the rich and spending on the poor. That Paul Ryan.
The Way We Were: In constant 2013 dollars, the median US household income in 1999 was $57,000. In 2013 it was $52,000 - nearly 10% less. Your results may vary.
Droning On: The drone-based US assassination program kills about seven bystanders for every intended target eliminated, but “It's like swatting flies, we can do it forever easily and you feel nothing... how often do you really think about killing a fly?”
Turtle: Bernie Sanders raised more campaign funds in the third quarter than any of the Republican candidates.
Roses: The CIA pretends that it waterboarded only one detainee. Okay, after a while they admitted that it was maybe three detainees. Maximum. And by torturing the English language, the lawyers may be right. But if you don't actually use a board, is it still water-boarding? According to the spooks, nope. If you include other forms of “simulated drowning”, then they will grudgingly admit there might have been another dozen detainees “water doused”. Sorry, guys. We all know that “informal field interrogations” most likely subjected tens if not hundreds more to this form of torture. But, hey, you want to pretend otherwise, fine by us. What's on TV tonight?
We Didn't Know: The British Treasury says that “hundreds of billions of pounds of international criminal money” is laundered through British banks every year. Almost makes you wonder why they don't do something to stop it. Almost.
Asked & Obvious: If the “Freedom Caucus” is so great, why don’t they just nominate one of their own?
Posted by Charles Kingsley Michaelson, III at 7:42 AM