Link Roundup, June 23, 2016

From the NY Times: Supreme Court validates University of Texas’ affirmative action program.

From the Guardian: Silicon Valley is pushing a universal basic income.

From The Atlantic: The GOP’s white strategy.

From The LA Times: Brent Scowcroft endorses Hilary Clinton.

From the Daily Dot: Tesla is buying Solar City.

From the Institute for American Values: When Moderates reach the boiling point.

An excerpt:

“I am angry because our policy challenges are complex and the answers will require focused thought, time and some significant level of compromise and sacrifice. I am fed up by too many people proposing simple answers to complex questions. That is not being elitist; it is being serious and realistic. I’m also angry at myself for not raising more of a ruckus long ago when I saw the trends so evident today.

“Our nation’s knots are tied so tightly now. We are angry with each other and deeply troubled about our future. Some find solace in concepts of isolation and moral certainty.”

Chris Ladd is a Texan living in the Chicago area. He has been involved in grassroots Republican politics for most of his life. He was a Republican precinct committeeman in suburban Chicago until he resigned from the party and his position after the 2016 Republican Convention. He can be reached at gopliferchicago at gmail dot com.

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163 comments on “Link Roundup, June 23, 2016
  1. Rob Ambrose says:

    The top 2 Google searches from the UK today:

    1. What happens if the UK leaves the EU

    2. What is the EU?

    These morons voted for something they didn’t even know about. Check out the girl in the article who already wishes she could vote different. These are the exact same profile of people that makes up the majority of Trump supporters.

  2. johngalt says:

    Chris’s tag line, “Because leaving isn’t exactly an option” has been staring at me from a browser tab all morning. I guess we have proof that is not the case.

  3. objv says:

    Brexit reminds me of Shrek’s situation in the swamp.

  4. A quote from a reader from the New York Times about Brexit:

    “This is what you get when politicians fighting for power primary strategy is to appeal to white uneducated males. The economic turmoil and hardship this will create will fall the hardest on the backs of these people. It is a cautionary tale for those who are thinking of supporting Trump in the U.S.”

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      Ugh. These idiots.

      He vited for Brexit but now he’s worried because he “didn’t think it would actually win”.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I’ve often thought about this, how voting supposedly “just to make a statement” is still voting, and voting has consequences.

        Same with people who call for abolishing certain social safety net programs (Social Security, Medicare) or entire organizations such as the IRS. Are they truly prepared for the consequences, or is it just something cool to dream about?

      • 1mime says:

        You have to remember that over half of our present Congress are millionaires. They won’t feel the consequences like most ordinary people. They are, after all, “extraordinary” people. Consequences like this always hurt the poor most. They have fewer options.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        It’s easy to call for abolishing a program when in the back of your mind you are confident it will always be there, when in fact you take it for granted and could not even conceive of living without it, you are so secure in it.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I do like people presenting alternatives, thinking outside the box, being original, and I like the idea of maybe phasing out certain programs, but we need to think of the consequences and not only about what sounds good.

    • 1mime says:

      If only they could “connect the dots”, Just Human. Therein lies the problem. This is all about payback.

  5. Rob Ambrose says:

    We haven’t talked about it for a while, but remember our discussions about wealth inequality? Some of us had said that “increasing the pie” alone wasn’t enough. Inequality is destabilizing in and of itself.

    What you’re seeing now, from Brexitisn to Trumpism to Sandersism etc, is (I believe) the chickens finally coming home to roost after decades of the 1% siphoning wealth from everyone else via failed trickle down economic policies. Real wages for the middle class are more or less unchanged since the 60’s (!).

    That pissess people off, and it leads to what were seeing now. There are huge differences between Sanders supporters and Trumpistas/Brexiteers, but they are both fueled from the same place: a feeling that the policies foisted on us by the elites are not working.

    The only difference between the two groups is who they blame for this problem, and how to fix it. But at its core, all of these movements are a result of the exact same issues.

  6. fiftyohm says:

    C’mon guys. The GBP is down about 8 cents. The Euro is down as well a bit. The markets are down a couple of percent, and we were ready for a correction, anyway. Whoop dee Doo. The sky is not falling. Let’s take a breath and see how this unfolds. Damn.

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      That $0.08 represents almost 10%. for a major global currency like the poind to move that much in 6 months would be fairly dramatic. In one night is almost unheard of.

      Remember the story of George Soros “Breaking the BoE” twenty years ago, when he forced them out of the ERM (a system where the Brits defended their currency by buying at set levels)? Soros became famous by facing off against the BoE and winning, and it was very painful for the UK. On that day, the pound dropped 4%. And THAT was considered unprecedented.

      Make no mistake, this is a huge deal.

      • fiftyohm says:

        Math, RobA, math! Check your numbers. “Almost 10%”. Really? No, the sky is not falling.

        And yes – Soros. That scion of the Left draining massive wealth from the international currency system, while producing – ah, let’s see, erm – not a goddam thing.

      • 1mime says:

        Fifty, you really have a thing for the “left” don’t ya? Can you see anything positive there?

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        The £ went from $1.50 to $1.35 overnight, a drop of 10%. It’s given some back and is now sitting at down by “merely” 6.5%. Still an unheard of drop for a major global currency, and it could easily go back lower over the next days and weeks.

        As for Soros, he was bettiv against an unsustainable system whereby the BoE used public funds to artificially prop up their currency for no reason other pride that “the pound should always be strong”. Conservatives should be all over him for that, one would think.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        “All over him” on the sense that they should praise him for it, according to typical conservative values.

        But he later in life donated to HRC and other liberal causes, so I guess that makes him PE#1 amongst conservatives today.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        Btw fifty, I don’t think the sky is falling either. Even tho this has clear economic implications, this is primarily a political crisis as opposed to a financial one.

        This isn’t sub prime or Lehman Brothers, or Bear Stearns. The economy is no diff today then it was yesterday. I think the UK will suffer, as they’ll be cut out of the one of the top 2 consumer markets in the world (well, not cut out of course, but making it more difficult to access them). But I don’t think this will cause any global disaster or anything.

        The UK may be f’d tho.

      • fiftyohm says:

        *sigh*. Peaks and valleys are irrelevant. 10% was pure hyperbole. Just admit it and let’s go on. The Euro lost far, far more than that in 2014. Remember?

        Also – does your comment regarding the BoE’s monetary policy read on my suggestion that Soros is/was a parasite? Didn’t think so.

      • fiftyohm says:

        With your last two comments I take no serious issue save for the UK’s access to markets. The EU is sucking wind, and they can’t afford to do too awfully much to impede trade without shooting themselves in the ****. We’re not members of the EU and have extensive trade with them. Now I know that’s not exactly a fair comparison, but trade restraint goes both ways. The EU hasn’t been trading with the UK all these years out of the goodness of their collective heart.

      • 1mime says:

        Well there is one piece of golden news out there: The House has adjourned until after the fourth. At least they won’t screw anything up anymore than they already have.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        “*sigh*. Peaks and valleys are irrelevant. 10% was pure hyperbole. Just admit it and let’s go on. The Euro lost far, far more than that in 2014. Remember”

        I mean….how is that hyperbole? The pound went from $1.50 to $1.35 in an hr. That’s a 10% drop. Sure, it gave some back, but it’s back down to about 8% as of just now.

        Forex markets trade 24 hrs and have immense liquidity, which is why they tend to be much less volatile.

        You can Pooh Pooh this all you want, the facts are the facts:

        Fact 1: the pound had a 10% drop in one hour.

        Fact 2: this is absolutely unheard of in a major currency pair, and I doubt has ever happened before in the modern era, if ever.

        As for the Euro, yes it went through a large depreciation in 2014 which ended up being more then 10%. That took place over weeks and months though. Never in one day. And also, that was the intended result. Dragbi enacted QE for Euro for precisely that reason: to devalue the currency and keep borrowing costs low for the eurozone in hopes of stimulating the economy. That was a controlled depreciation (to an extent). This is something different.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        Check out this chart of the GBP. For those unsure of how these charts work, each bar represents a day, with the top of the bar the high of the day, and the bottom of the bar the low of the day. Thus, a “tall” bar represents a volatile day which had a big gap between the high and the low.

        This kind of move doesn’t happen in major currencies. Full stop.

    • johngalt says:

      The bigger issue is that there is virtually no upside for the UK in this move. The EU loses its only liberalizing voice, the UK loses its ability to influence EU policy, which is significant as they were slowly inching towards greater integration of services, which would have benefitted the UK significantly. Scotland will hold another referendum for independence, which will win, and enter into some awkward currency union (which will operate like continuing to share a checking account with your ex-wife). England’s nuclear deterrent becomes homeless and our only useful military ally in Europe is weakened dramatically.

      All this so that blokes can clink pint glasses in the pub about how they gave a good one to Brussels and they won’t be overrun by Muslim refugees before they head out for a late-night curry.

      • 1mime says:

        Good thoughts, JG. One has to wonder what the adversarial powers Russia, China, and N Korea are scheming about right now….not to mention ISIL. I shudder to think about how someone with evil intent could try to capitalize on the turmoil in the western hemisphere about now. Pray it doesn’t but….

      • fiftyohm says:

        Hmmm… Scotland has massive manufacturing and resources, I guess. Wait…

        About the only thing that could happen regarding the nuke deterrent is if Scotland kicks the UK out completely, or charges ‘rent’ impossible to pay. Scotland cannot afford that. And the oil revenue? Yes, 90% of the North Sea oil produced by the UK is under “Scottish Law”, but this is an internal agreement, and entirely within the UK. Were Scotland to leave, this would be subject to renegotiation. And of course we all know that Scottish companies own all those production platforms, right? What are they gonna do? Nationalize them? Not likely.

        So, Scotland, that wonderful place I so love, that land of fantastic whisky, castles, and wool, great beer and people, really don’t have all that much to get by on without the greater UK. And do we really believe that the EU, and more importantly the EMU are likely to welcome such an economy with open arms? Why? More mouths to feed?

        I really don’t know what the upside for the UK will be. I do know this is a major slap to the EU though. Will it hang together? Will France and Holland leave? Has this massive, transcultural experiment in border dissolution been a failure? Time will tell.

      • johngalt says:

        All of those things about Scotland are true. This will not matter to the Scots.

      • fiftyohm says:

        JG – A very good point, indeed!

  7. flypusher says:

    Trump displays his keen grasp of current events:

    He praises Brexit in SCOTLAND. A place that voted to remain in the EU. Of course he did. Now I have burned through a whole lot of electrons explaining why I think Trump is totally unqualified to be President, and I have a very, very long list of reasons. But if I have to pick just one, this is the prime example. He can’t be bothered to pay attention to what’s going on. He refuses to do his homework. This failing also turned me off to Sara Palin and Geirge W Bush. No curiosity, not even any shame when caught in a moment of ignorance. Willful ignorance is the biggest sin of all, in my book.

    • texan5142 says:

      Willful ignorance is the best description of Trump voters.

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      He’s really hitching his horse to this post, and I think that’s a major strategic blunder.

      Saying things like “Britain took their country back!” ties Brexitism very close to Trumpism.

      There’s very little upside and a whole lot of downside. Even if this ends up being good for Britain in the end, thee will be very few signs of that anytime before November. Meanwhile, there IS the potential of this turning very sour by then.

      Word is Morgan Stanley is planning to move 4000 jobs out of London already. If that becomes a trend, and if the FTSE (British stock market) tanks and stays down for months, or enters a bear market……Trump may wish he’d never said these sorts of things.

      You can imagine millions of voters thinking “Oh, THIS is what happens when you ‘take your country back’? THIS is the ‘greatness’ you want to bring America back too? No thanks”

      • flypusher says:

        Some voters just want to watch the world burn.

        STIGGINIT BABY!!!!!!!!

      • 1mime says:

        “Some people just like to watch the world burn…” And, they wonder after why they’re hot….No connecting the dots for these folks.

      • 1mime says:

        “This is what happens when you take your country back…”

        You cannot forget, Rob, that most Trump voters are not basing their votes on logic. They will be more likely to say: “See, I told you so!” They want the ‘establishment’ to suffer. They are not thinking about the consequences of having someone like Trump actually “in” office, running the place.

        I’ll tell you who is probably nervous this morning, the GOPe. I’ll bet this is a stimulus to the NeverTrump movement. It would certainly be justified. I mean, can you imagine Trump’s response from the oval office? “The people have spoken. America will be just fine, better than fine, really great! We’ll make deals with the EU and do better than we ever have….great in fact!”

    • 1mime says:

      You are right, Fly. Why concern yourself with the “big picture” when your golf course opening is happening! Surely, there can’t be more serious issues out there! Can you just envision the poor staffer who comes to wake up Trump over a matter of national security? “Go away, you fool! I have to get my beauty rest! Oh, I have to go to the command room? Now? Call my hairdresser now. This comb-over takes time. A man’s gotta look “presidential” when he’s making “big” calls….

  8. Rob Ambrose says:

    With regards to a possible recession and how it affects the 2016 election, I actually think the conventional wisdom is wrong (HRC will suffer due to a Brexit fueled recession). I think she benefits.

    Some recessions would help Trump, and others would help HRC. A Brexit fueled recession would help HRC because it’s obvious the Brexit crowd is analogous to Trumpism over here. In a way, Brexit is a Trump proxy move. If there’s a recession between now and November, HRC can make a pretty convincing case. Shell say “see what’s happening in the UK and the world right now? That’s what happens when countries succumb to fear, who build walls and borders instead of bridges etcetc. This is what America’s future looks like with Trump”.

    On the other hand, a recession caused by what most would percieve as ” globalization factors” (such as the sub prime fueled recession of 2008) that would be devastating for HRC.

    Ironically enough, this vote couldnbe the best thing that happened for Hill. I know there was worries that the global economy IS slowing down. Even if that was correct, and we end up having a global recession that has NOTHING to do with Brexit, the perception will be that the cause WAS Brexit based on the timing. The narrative will be “well, the global economy didn’t tank until Brexit. See? That’s what happens when you close yourself off”

  9. Rob Ambrose says:

    In some ways, Brexit is going to be a real world, real time social/economic experiment that will either support or refute some major, overarching narratives that we’ve all basically accepted as self evident truths, specifically the generally accepted idea (by the mainstream, by the media, by academics etc) that globalism and ever more open borders us both 1) the natural order of civilizational progress and 2) an inherent good.

    These two assumptions make up the core of the world view of probably most Westerners. We’re about to find out if this is correct, and in many ways, the UK is the perfect laboratory for this experiment.

    Here’s what I think will happen: the UK leaves under pretty unfavorable conditions (the EU is heavily inventivized to make it as painful as possible for the UK, in order to give France and the Netherlands second thoughts about leavings as well). Scotland will declare independence and stay in the EU. In many ways, the natural split between Scotland and England should help the transition. Most international and global companies (mostly finance companies) HQ’s will relocate to Scotland, which won’t be that difficult since Scotland is still part if the UK. And on the day Britan officially leaves, I think Scotland will officially leave as well, which will provide continuity, as these companies will never be outside of the EU. They’ll be in the EU as part of the UK until the day of Brexit, and starting that day, they’ll still be in the EU as part of Scotland.

    So we’re going to have a perfect scenario where a major Western nation willl aplitnin half, one half continuing on the globalism trend Western civilization has been on since 1945, the other half is going it alone. What happens will have huge implications for the future of the Western world (and by extension the whole world). If the UK ends up with many self inflicted wounds that never recovers from (ESPECIALLY if Scotland surges forward with its continued ties to the common market) then we will all be happy that our entire worldview (I.e. that globalization, while having some big negatives, is indeed a net positive, and we have been on the “correct” path these past 70 years) has been confirmed. On the other hand…..what if Britain (either alone or continuing in the UK with Scotland) flourishes? What if it’s economy grows? Or even doesn’t shirnk? All ofba sudden, then your going to have countries all over the world (including America) who are going to take a very hard look at the big picture, and are going to ask themselves if maybe we’ve been wrong about globalization this entire time. And if that happens, it could lead to some very major changes to our society, and the path it’s on.

    Personally, I both hope and believe that the former will prove correct (I.e. that this is a historic blunder, and Britain will regret this decision rather quickly, thus keeping the “Globalism = good” narrative that has driven Western civilization for 70 years). But if it’s the latter? That could lead to some very fundamental changes to both how we view our place in the global village, and how we interact with each other.

    Interesting times.

    • MassDem says:

      I think that some Leave proponents thought the the UK could become like Norway, a nation which is not part of the EU, but has enjoyed economic success despite that.

      However, what they ignore is that the way this works is that Norway is substantially integrated into the EU, accepts most of its provisions in order to be able to access the European market (including the free movement of people), and has no representation in Brussels to affect any of this. Remember that anti-immigration sentiment was a prime driver of the Leave campaign.

      Personally, I think the British voters are idiots. Half of their exports go to the EU, and now they have given up their leverage over trade terms with the EU. The EU is known for striking tough deals for access to their market.

      Also there is the possibility that this outcome may lead to the breakup of the UK if Scotland and possibly Northern Ireland leave in order to remain in the EU. England & Wales will have have set up direct competitors next door with favorable access to a major market. The makes no sense to me.

    • 1mime says:

      I read that the UK will stay in the EU for a bit to transition….I wonder if this will offer any “second thoughts” that could precipitate a reversal. I cannot fathom the difficulty and change that will emerge from this decision… all involved. Certainly , The US will be affected as well….hence, your “is globalism bad or good”…..Might I suggest some of both?

    • Fair Economist says:

      There won’t be a Brexit. The referendum is only advisory, and the current Parliament is overwhelmingly Remain (over half the Tories and essentially all the opposition). The next elections are 4 years off. To Brexit, they’d have to change the fixed term Parliaments act, call a snap election, and win it with a clear majority (because the MPs, as members of the elite, lean against leaving personally). The current Tory MPs won’t agree to that because it risks their jobs (and the EU that *personally* they mostly support.)

      So, no action for 4 years at least. “Executing the Brexit” will be a campaign issue in 2020, but I don’t see the Tories getting a large enough majority to do so then. On top of the split within their own party, that’s 4 more years of demographic shifting to pro-EU youth and 4 more years of Overton Window shifting.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        I dunno….I can’t see it. Any democracy who holds a referendum and there’s a clear Victor would ignore that at their peril. Even ppl that voted stay would be pissed off if the gov’t just ignores the will of the ppl.

        And if that was the plan, I doubt Cameron would have resigned.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        Also, apparently the EU wants Britain out ASAP. They need to make it as painful as possible for the UK to discourage others from leaving.

  10. Ah well. It was fun to live in Britain but the time may have come for me to leave.

    • Houston-Stay-At-Homer says:

      But a time for everyone else to visit as the currency craters.

      I might be able to pick up a crown jewel for $100 USD.

    • 1mime says:

      Hope you’ve got the family jewels sewn into your coat lining, EJ….So sorry for all who have savings in pounds. I can assure you, as a retiree, I feel your pain.

      It will be interesting to watch the transition in England in how they manage their economy going forward. Better have some sharp minds in there – And, Fifty, not all bureaucrats are lazy and dishonest….whereas, most politicians are….????

      • Thanks for the support, 1mime. I’m in the unexpectedly fortunate position of someone who owes more money than he has saved, but owes that money in a currency which is plummeting.

        Still, I’m more worried for the people around me. I’ve got a trade I can practise anywhere, multiple citizenships, and no family tying me down. My fellow citizens (both British and German) are often not as able to do so. I can walk away, but they can’t.

        Regarding the economic management, that might be the real issue. Everyone in this country who is economically literate was in favour of Remain. There is basically no plan for what happens now, because the decision was not made on economic grounds. As a result, everything is now going to have to be improvised.

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      In some ways, it is kinda interesting to see if those who say “we can’t leave the EU or the world will end!!” Or “we can’t NOT bailout the banks or the world will end!;” are right.

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:


      • 1mime says:

        And, Cameron…

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        Don’t get me wrong, I’m kinda shitting my pants right now (not literally).

        But hey, maybe they’ll have the band playing as we go down?

      • johngalt says:

        I suppose we can take some comfort, such as it is, in the knowledge that – for this instant – Americans are not the stupidest people on Earth.

      • 1mime says:

        I’ll be waiting for the articles explaining the impact on the EU participants. This is going to have far-reaching results….I won’t take much comfort in the US not being the “most” stupid until after the November election.

      • Griffin says:

        Widespread xenophobia appears to be the equivalent of some sort of parasite that feeds on brain matter among infefcted populaces and makes everyone dumber.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        One thing about this really sticks in my craw, and I don’t know that there’s a solution, but it bugs me that fornthe most part the average “leave” voter is older. It seems unseemly that such a momentous decision was basically made BY people that wont be around 20-30+ from now, and FOR the young ppl who will, in the face of stiff opposition.

        I get it, it’s democracy and all that, and I would be the first to vehemently opposed any attempt to disenfranchise anybody because of age……it just seems wrong. Young ppl are having their future decided for them, against their own wishes, by an older generation full of fear and xenophobia who wont even be around for much longer.

      • 1mime says:

        I agree, but it’s the same here in the U.S. (not me!) who are fueling the Trump movement and right wing paranoia here. We are becoming a world of very short-sighted, selfish people.

      • formdib says:

        “I suppose we can take some comfort, such as it is, in the knowledge that – for this instant – Americans are not the stupidest people on Earth.”

        If you were to tell me a year ago that Trump would actually manage to win the primary and the UK would actually vote to leave the EU, I would have said, “Nah, the loudest people in the room calling for stuff like that do that because they’re disenfranchised. They’re basically loud BECAUSE nobody agrees with them. They’ll continue to bitch as the world moves inexorably forward.”

        How do I know that’s what I would have said? Because I probably have that line transcripted somewhere. It’s exactly the sorts of thoughts I had.

        Now I feel all bets are off. I’m torn between fear and anxiety, and on the other hand considering that if my assumptions were so incorrect, I have to be not paying enough attention or evaluating things incorrectly. As such one half of me wants to punch someone in the face, and the other half of me wants to eat a big slice of humble pie and try to step back to figure out what I’m doing wrong.

        What makes me feel the most dejected is that if this economic setback ends up taking long haul hold and cripples the world economy, the US has already been struggling to hold its momentum in the face of the drag of world winds and it could finally succumb and go into recession. Combine that with the emboldening of nationalists worldwide at the proof that they can win, and this seems like a good bump for Trump.

        All I can hope is that the message that is heard is from the other side, people will realize that these nationalists mean business — and by business I mean everything that’s bad for business — and start stepping up to,


        you know,

        ‘conserve’ our institutions.

      • 1mime says:

        I think you have lots of company on the “Trump the nominee denial”….BREXIT is a shock.

        What I do think is happening is that working people, people who are vulnerable (seniors…whether they are using good judgement or not), have been in the shadows of politics for a very long time and not being heard. It goes without saying that I don’t think a Donald Trump has the political skill or business acumen to manage a crisis of this magnitude (we’re gonna miss the steady hand of Obama, I promise you). This is unprecedented and if there is any good to come from it, hopefully it will be that decision-makers will be able to look honestly at the world they have created and live in and see, for the first time ever, what vulnerability looks like. Gut check time all around.

      • flypusher says:

        “about this really sticks in my craw, and I don’t know that there’s a solution, but it bugs me that fornthe most part the average “leave” voter is older. It seems unseemly that such a momentous decision was basically made BY people that wont be around 20-30+ from now, and FOR the young ppl who will, in the face of stiff opposition.”

        Do young British adults vote in the same pathetically low percentages as do American young adults? I can’t find much sympathy for people who disenfranchise themselves.

      • “One thing about this really sticks in my craw, and I don’t know that there’s a solution, but it bugs me that fornthe most part the average “leave” voter is older. It seems unseemly that such a momentous decision was basically made BY people that wont be around 20-30+ from now, and FOR the young ppl who will, in the face of stiff opposition.”

        isn’t it the same here in the US? The GOP is only in existence because of old, white, angry males! they will all be dead when the results of their demands are here, be it global warming or tax cuts to the ultra wealthy?

      • 1mime says:

        Read this article Justhuman, and see if you have the same comfort level. There are lots of younger, angry White people out there….

      • flypusher says:

        US markets open with a thud.

      • 1mime says:

        Not nearly as interesting if you’re invested in the market, Rob! Gonna be a wild ride………

      • Flypusher:
        Young British people vote in fairly high numbers. The issue is that they often vote in very low-information ways; possibly because people are clever enough to devise campaigns to appeal to youthful enthusiasm, or possibly because the millenials are a generation who care about ideas much more than pragmatism.

      • 1mime says:

        EJ, another comment I read from young disappointed Brit voters on BREXIT, is the timing of the election….during the off-season when many weren’t on campus. Is that an excuse or a valid reason?

      • 1mime:
        I’m not saying that that isn’t the case (it’s currently exam season at universities) but postal voting is a thing in this country. It’s very popular among young people; one of the few times when the archaic system of paper mail is useful, in fact.

    • Griffin says:

      SON OF A BITCH! I knew I should have gotten my British passport before the vote but I was so confident they were going to stay! They call us Scottish crazy but apparently it’s the English voting to leave! Damn my procrasination, supposedly I could have used it to travel freely in the EU if I’d gotten it sooner.

      • Griffin says:

        BTW I almost want that idiot Cameron to resign but there’s a chance that if he does some hard-right Tory nutjob protectionist will take his place. After all that talk about how crazy many of Jeremy Corbyn’s ideas are (and they are) it turns out Britain would apparently be better off with his Labour Party running the show than the Tory dolts who just nuked Britain’s economy! I mean I don’t think you can do a whole lot worse than that!

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:


      • Rob Ambrose says:

        He’s resigning Griffin. Out by October.

  11. Ryan Ashfyre says:

    OT, but a nice reminder of the kind of intellectual slop we get from so-called “conservative wonks” who, in this particular case, seems to feel an incessant need to kiss Paul Ryan’s ass while at the same time rehashing the idea that a tax credit can solve all our health care problems as if it were the first time THAT’S ever been brought up. Head, meet desk.

    • 1mime says:

      I’ve been tracking Ryan’s health care plan since 2010. There aren’t many changes and there isn’t much detail that can be scored by the Congressional Budget Office. Conveniently. Guess he’s picking up on the mood of Trump’s base – “wow ’em with promises; offer few details that can be critically studied.”

      • I ran into a friend the other day who has ACA health care. He is scared to death the Republicans will cancel Obamacare and bring is some wonky system that basically helps big business on the backs of the poor!
        I looked at their “new” plan. Giving people the right to buy health insurance across state lines can never work. Obamacare has lots of things that can be fixed, that’s for sure. But it is what it is basically because the GOP would not agree to anything.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        Just another human – yes, Obamacare needs fixing. The galling thing though is that some of its biggest flaws were directly and purposefully CAUSED by GOP obstruction. Flaws which are now being pointed to by the GOP as proof that Obamacare isn’t working.

        It is frankly disgraceful when Ryan touts the number of ppl left behind by O’care as evidence of the crappiness of the law…..when the vast majority of those ppl left behind are because they’re in red States where the governor won’t expand Medicare.

        Typical GOP tactics:

        – Campaign on “broken system” meme
        – get elected
        – break system
        – declare themselves right.

      • 1mime says:

        I believe you meant “won’t expand Medicaid”. But, you are correct. It’s the modus operandi: want to kill a program? Don’t fund it or give it an impossible set of demands so it can’t succeed. I am sorry but I find the Republican Party despicable in their tactics.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        “Don’t fund it or give it an impossible set of demands so it can’t succeed”

        Bingo Mime. Another example? I watched that Katie Couric gun control doc last night, and did you know the ATF has been restricted by Congress to digitize their information for gun traces? When they get a trace request from law enforcement or the gov, they have to send a human down to the archives to manually go through the records and find the owner.

        And they get a million requests a month.

        I was absolutely flabbergasted. You want the definition of dysfunctional gov’t? A gov’t that creates an entire regulatory arm, and then does literally everything it can to make sure it can’t do its job.

      • 1mime says:

        Actually, I was aware of that. Go to the “everytown” website and read through it. The blockades are not accidental.

  12. 1mime says:

    On the SCOTUS ruling on Obama’s immigration order that was struck down, I was surprised to learn what the order “didn’t do” (declare the immigration order “unconstitutional”) and that Obama can ask for a rehearing……I love

  13. 1mime says:

    I apologize for going OT but this is so interesting I had to post it. Spy satelites from the Cold War Era proving climate change – 30 years ago? It’s getting harder and harder for global warming deniers to stand fast…..of course they’ll think of something….photographs bogus, re-touched, etc….you know the drill…Fascinating story.

    • n1cholas says:

      In case you’ve never seen this site, bookmark it for when the TalkingPointWarriors™ start screaming about the GlobalWarmingHoax while vomiting forth misleading and factually incorrect information.

      • 1mime says:

        It’s no wonder that the Pentagon believes in global warming. They’ve had the benefit of these satellite pictures for a very long time….

    • Mime,

      I agree. BUT, at some point, and we may have already past the date, Global Warming may be irreversible! i have read that what with the projected increase in global population, add to that global warming and it’s effect on crops, there will be food and water wars. A lot of what we all concern ourselves with, you name it, recycling, etc, will be small potatoes compared to where the world will be in 100 years.

      i have no idea what the answer is. But i do know sticking my head in the sand, or someplace else, will not help!

  14. Rob Ambrose says:

    Ughhhhh…..seriously CNN?

    I hate seeing pieces of shit get rewarded. Especially when they’re getting rewarded for basically being pieces of shit.

  15. Griffin says:

    Starts out saying “Centrists are not the people you critique them as really!”

    Goes on to basically equate the GOP and Democrats as equally problematic/extreme, treats the idea that some Democrats think the modern GOP (e.g. Trump) could be a threat to the US’ well-being as utterly ridiculous, and repeats the already Establishment concensus of fiscal conservatism and social liberalism while freaking out about the Debt despite it being a completely different scenario from past nations with either Commodity-backed money or a Commodity money system.

    What a wonderful way to dispel most of the criticisms of moderates. If he were serious apart moderation he would be going after the GOP hard, but doesn’t of course, because to say it’s mostly one side would make you “extreme”. People forget centrists too can become ideological to the point of being impractical.

    • unarmedandunafraid says:

      Is he saying its ok to be a moderate as long as you don’t take it to the extreme?

      • Griffin says:

        No I was being sarcastic. He pleads that the negative stereotypes about moderate pundits/activists isn’t true than takes stereotypical positions that are not just bland (I’m actually ok with bland) but also intellectually lazy while implying an obvious false equivalence between the parties. It’s a way to pretend you have backbone when you don’t.

        What this all ignores is that there’s already been a centrist political party that has practically held the positions he espouses for the past twenty years of its existance (at least on the national level). It’s called the Democratic Party. Maybe someone should shoot him an email in case he hasn’t heard of it?

      • unarmedandunafraid says:

        Griffin – your sarcasm had a point. Mine was weak. I’m slightly embarrassed.

    • n1cholas says:

      The BothSidesDoIt™ crowd are simply right-wing enablers, and nothing more.

      As you say, there is already a sane, centrist US political party. Just because right-wing lunatics label it socialist/communist/libruuul doesn’t make it so.

  16. Ryan Ashfyre says:

    OT, but new polls out showing Clinton leading Trump by about four points in otherwise red Arizona (how’s that Senate race looking, Senator McCain?) and tied in North Carolina.

    • 1mime says:

      Uh, polls this early don’t really mean much, Ryan………..but if it makes you feel better, good!

      • Ryan Ashfyre says:

        I’m well aware of that, Mime, and I would never say polls this early in the game are indicative of anything. It’s entirely possible that Trump could still take Arizona, McCain could keep his Senate seat and Democrats’ best hope of turning these still red states blue could be set back a number of years.

        However, just as it is with my consideration towards Texas, I do try to pay attention to trend lines. One poll doesn’t mean much, but if we start getting into months’ long polling that shows Clinton and Trump essentially tied in Utah and having her consistently ahead in Arizona, then that’s something to start putting some faith in.

        One step at a time. Let’s see where this goes.

      • n1cholas says:

        While polls don’t really mean much, how much was Obama up over the Republican candidate in Arizona this far out in 2008 and 2012?

      • 1mime says:

        I don’t recall. Do you?

      • n1cholas says:

        It was more of a rhetorical question, as in, how often is a Democratic candidate for President ahead of a Republican candidate in Arizona, regardless of the date.

        That said…

        RCP has June 2008 polls showing McCain by about 10%, and he won by about 9%

        RCP has June 2012 polls showing Rmoney by about 13%, and he won by about 9%.

        Clinton being up anything in June doesn’t mean that she’s going to win Arizona, but it does reflect the fact that Trump isn’t nearly as strong of a candidate as his right-wing authoritarian followers believe and know he is.

      • Better than if it were the other way:-))! That’s how i look at it. But Mime, you are right. Polls today are sort of meaningless. I just hope the polls do not get so bad Trumpy doesn’t get the boot before he gets the nomination!

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      I think polls at this juncture may not be a good indication of whose going to win Mime. But I def think they have value as a way of spotting trends and having a finger on the mood of the electorate.

  17. JeffAtWolfcreek says:

    There always seem to be three categories: Radicals, Reasonables, and Victims.

    The Radicals attempt to secure power and/or wealth using violence. They wrap these attempts in an ideology of hate. They appeal to the reptile mind. They will use rule of law to further their agenda and codify their hate if they have the power to do so. Obvious examples include the slave trade, Roman torturers, Islamic terrorists, Christian terrorists, Jim Crow linchings, the decimation of the American Indian, etc, etc, etc.

    The Reasonables usually know right from wrong on the face of it; owning other people
    like property is evil even if it is legal. Blowing people up to appease a god is evil. Death marching a population across the country is evil. This group is usually working hard to make something for themselves and their families and so, since they are not directly affected (see group 3) by the violence, and really do have a life to live, they tend to turn a blind eye and go back to leaving comments at their favorite blog.

    The Victims are self-explanatory.

    Regardless of how you have voted in the past, or, are planning to vote in the future, everyone I’ve seen on this blog belongs in the Reasonables. We would do well to remember that we are on the same team. The fact that some of us want to use the rule of law to curb gun violence and others of us want to be sure we don’t fall into that third, sad, group because we were disarmed does not change this fact.

    So, let’s be happy that Tracey wants to be armed and knows how to use them. He may be training us all in those skills if shit goes really south. And let’s be happy that Rob and Ryan would like to pass laws to reduce gun violence. Those laws may save a loved one someday.

    Above all, lets keep our sights on the Radical bastards that have made history such a bitch for so many. It’s us against them.

    • 1mime says:

      If I could, I’d like to amend your category #1 and add “power” to “violence”. There are many ways power can be used to subjugate that don’t “kill” but make one’s life miserable. Finally, the third category, “victims” is the saddest of the three because so often they are innocents.

  18. antimule says:

    Note how Guardian tries to twist Basic Income into something evil. Apparently the Left is not interested in social programs that don’t increase the size of bureaucracy.

    • Captain Splendid says:

      There are so many assumptions in your 2 sentences it would take me a week to explain them to you.

      • antimule says:

        Okay, I admit I oversimplified and went too far. I am actually pretty left leaning, meaning pro-contraception, okay with more taxes on the rich, okay with abortion, believe in global warming and so forth.

        Yet, I cannot deny that there is pretty extensive force on the left that is more interested in creating extensive paternalistic bureaucracies and micromanaging people’s lives than in solving problems. Add to it some batshit postmodernism and radical feminism and the fix is in. Silicon Valley are all white male (actually a lot of them are Asian but that doesn’t count) oppressors who don’t give a fig for critical studies so they cannot be seen as the part of the solution, only part of the problem.

        So we see a lot of hate on Uber, because it broke Taxi monopoly and bureaucracy even though it is helping a lot of lowest class people with no prospects or connections.

      • 1mime says:

        Antimule, can you describe “radical feminism” as you mean it please?

      • Houston-Stay-At-Homer says:

        Heck, i don’t want an explanation of your full two sentences, I would just like your definition of “radical feminism”.

      • 1mime says:

        Ha, Homer, great minds and all that rot, right!

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Helping low-income people in what way? In terms of employment or affordable taxi service?

        Not that many low-income people have a car that’s acceptable to Uber, if they have a car at all or even drive.

        Also, to use Uber you have to have a cell phone or other internet device to even get a cab and a credit card to put in the system for payment purposes. Uber doesn’t accept phone calls or cash. Low income people having a cell phone may be common, but they won’t always have a credit card, and the oldest people who would need cab service won’t have any sort of device.

      • 1mime says:

        Hmm, so if a woman objects to male dominance, she is a radical feminist? What about belief in egalitarianism? Does that make a woman a wimp?

      • tuttabellamia says:

        And a lot of the traditional cab drivers who are now out of a job because of Uber are low-income, and they can’t move over to Uber because their cars are not in good enough condition.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        I’m more curious to know about “batshit postmodernism.”

      • antimule says:

        @1mime, I agree with you that terms like “postmodernism” and “radical feminism” deserve explanation.

        “Hmm, so if a woman objects to male dominance, she is a radical feminist? What about belief in egalitarianism? Does that make a woman a wimp?”

        No, that is not what I think at all. For me, radical feminism is automatically assuming that all gender differences are due to males being oppressive. Like, if certain field has larger percentage of men in it, it is AUTOMATICALLY ASSUMED to be due to “structures of oppression.” No other potential explanation (such as that men and women have different preferences) is tolerated at all. I am all for fighting oppression that actually exists, but I don’t see why anyone should expect all fields to be exactly 50/50. Also, no one fights for equal numbers among garbageman or miners, it is always corporate boardrooms or IT jobs.

        Personally I think that the debate over why so many CEOs are male only obscures a more central debate of whether CEOs should have so much power and influence in the first place. How about paying workers more and executives less?

        I don’t for a second deny that Feminism was a good thing overall. Leftism was also on the whole good if you exclude marxism. Yet, bureaucracies have tendencies to beget more bureaucracies (whether corporate or public) and left is unfortunately pretty bureaucracy-dependent. Silicon Valley tends to create solutions that cut trough bureaucratic systems, and they tend to reward meritocracy (however imperfectly) over whoever claims to be oppressed at the moment. So it is despised. That is not to say that I trust Silicon Valley to do the right thing, either.

        Basic Income is definitely a kind of solution that is hated in part because it has too few moving parts for any interest group to take too much advantage of.

        As for postmodernism angle, that is another issue that I am at the moment to tired to discuss, but will try some other time.

        I assure you that I am not a right wing nut in disguise. I am thoroughly disgusted with the Republican party and at everything it now stands for. I hope Trump burns them all to the ground. But that doesn’t make me automatic cheerleader for everything contemporary Left does, either. I hope you are not disappointed in me too much, 1mime.

      • 1mime says:

        Not at all, antimule. I was just curious about the terms you used. As BoBo pointed out (I think!), paying the CEO of UH millions of dollars and then using lower profits as a “reason” to exit the ACA, is the height of hypocrisy, and it happens time and again. And, yes, workers get screwed, and without unions, no one is really there to fight specifically for them.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        AntiMule wrote: As for postmodernism angle, that is another issue that I am at the moment to tired to discuss, but will try some other time.
        I think I know to what you are referring — the use of literary and other media theory to turn literature, music, and art into something not intended by the author — using it as a tool for expressing personal and social grievances such as “radical feminism.”

  19. texan5142 says:

    That Fisher case was a bullshit con job from the start.

    “In 2013, ProPublica published what became one of the most provocative analyses of the Fisher case. It highlighted an overlooked, deeply ironic fact about the case: when one actually looked at Fisher’s arguments, she actually had not been denied admission because of her race, but rather because of her inadequate academic achievements.”

    “It’s true that the university, for whatever reason, offered provisional admission to some students with lower test scores and grades than Fisher. Five of those students were black or Latino. Forty-two were white.

    Neither Fisher nor Blum mentioned those 42 applicants in interviews. Nor did they acknowledge the 168 black and Latino students with grades as good as or better than Fisher’s who were also denied entry into the university that year. Also left unsaid is the fact that Fisher turned down a standard UT offer under which she could have gone to the university her sophomore year if she earned a 3.2 GPA at another Texas university school in her freshman year.”

    • Houston-Stay-At-Homer says:

      I was coming here to put in this exact quote.

    • Turtles Run says:

      Texan – you earned this

    • flypusher says:

      I am really surprised that her case made it to SCOTUS, but it’s good that this is settled.

    • flypusher says:

      Also, if anyone really has a valid complaint about race-based admissions, I’ve heard accusations about some schools putting a limit on the percentage of Asian/ Asian-American students accepted. Seems that some of them could have far more standing than Fisher.

      • Pseudoperson Randomian says:

        And it’s utterly painful for an Asian American – to have everything they ask for and more, only to get looked over because there are too many Asian Americans already there who have even more.

        IIRC, California stopped doing affirmitive action at some level, and it resulted in a drop in white, black and Hispanic students and a huge rise in asians.

        Not in favor – in the slightest of anything that attempts to equalize outcome, rather than equalize opportunity, though my perspective might not be unbiased….

      • tuttabellamia says:

        The subject of affirmative action is complex. I appreciate opinions both pro and con.

      • Houston-Stay-At-Homer says:

        Pseudo – I would argue the affirmative action increases the chances of equalizing the opportunity, not the outcome.

      • Rob Ambrose says:

        Tutta, agreed. It’s a pretty nuanced topic.

        On the one hand, in a vacuum, AA IS unfair to whites and makes. OTOH, white males have plenty of advantages of their own, and AA is often necessary to level the playing field. In a way it’s a necessary evil.

        It’s unfair, but if the white males hadn’t spent 200 years handicapping everyone else, it wouldnt be necessary.

        At the end of the day, there is a certain perverse fairness in sometimes not selecting an otherwise qualified white male, since that has been happening to minorities for centuries.

      • 1mime says:

        One day, we will have a country that has no need of affirmative action. That will be a fine day.

      • Pseudoperson Randomian says:

        It’ll never go away.

        It’ll ossify into a quota based vote bank system.

        It doesn’t even fix the underlying problems of poor infrastructure available to certain sections of society, poverty, broken families etc.

        I dunno. I really can’t be perfectly unbiased, not when there is some personal experience, but while I’m A-OK with paying quite a bit more in taxes, affirmative action really rubs me the wrong way

      • 1mime says:

        If AA rubs you the wrong way, then you must be apoplectic over how corporations pay their CEOs while stagnating worker pay and cutting benefits, and how women are largely non-existent on corporate Boards of Directors much less in positions of leadership, or that women get paid roughly $.81 for every $1 earned by a man while doing the same job, or or or

      • Houston-Stay-At-Homer says:

        “At the end of the day, there is a certain perverse fairness in sometimes not selecting an otherwise qualified white male”

        Your statement falls somewhat into the trap of so many people fall into when talking about affirmative action.

        Based on a few centuries of White, male dominance in the workplace, the default position is that a White male is the person who should get the job, and thus he is “passed over” to select a female, a minority, or the perfect combo of a minority female over the age of 40.

        Most will then fall back to, “Well, he was the most qualified…”, but as someone who looks at this stuff for a living, “most qualified” either doesn’t exist or is too hard for anyone to define if it does exist.

        In an employment setting, is “most qualified” the person with the most experience? We can look at a few dozen really well done studies that will show you that applicants with 10 years experience do not ultimately perform better on the job than applicants who had 5 years experience. I can show you a wonderful study that shows for refinery operators, having two years of any work experience is a more powerful predictor than having two years of actual refining experience.

        Do high employment test scores mean “most qualified”? I can show you a few dozen well done studies that show although there is a relatively linear correlation between test scores and job performance, it is something of an asymptotic relationship and at some point having a little higher score doesn’t help you. Then, we can look at other well done studies that will show you that personality probably predicts job performance as well as cognitive skill for a whole slew of jobs.

        In education, does a high SAT/ACT mean most qualified? The correlation between SAT and college GPA is there, but it isn’t all that strong. Should it be high school GPA to determine most qualified? High school GPA correlates with college GPA, but again, it isn’t all that strong.

        We have to have some metrics to make decisions, but we treat these metrics as more absolute and meaningful than they probably are.

  20. 1mime says:

    SCOTUS gave us a very small carrot and a huge stick. The immigration deadlock is a big setback.

    • Rob Ambrose says:

      One very interesting thing Mime is that Kennedy has vited against every single AA case since being on the court (mid 80’s).

      The fact that he voted for this one is curious. It could just be because of the weakness of this particular case. It could also be a subtle shift in attitude. Clearly, the SCOTUS justices are human, and as such, are able to evolve ideologies. Be interesting to see if this was a one off, or perhaps if Kennedy is drifting towards the center? I’d love to be a fly on the wall of the justices discussing the GOP obstruction of Garland. In many ways, the GOP breach of protocol on SCOTUS is an attack on the institution itself, and thus each individual justice, regardless of who appointed them.

      • 1mime says:

        I think it was math, Rob. Justice Kagan had to recuse herself as she had previous legal interaction on this suit or issue in some way. If Kennedy hadn’t voted “for”, the AA suit would have failed. No tie possible since there were only 7 votes. Possible reason? I also think any justice would have trouble supporting this particular case as it was so compromised.

      • 1mime says:

        Ha! I made a good guess! (Wish all my guesses worked out like this well…)

        “Justice Antonin Scalia’s death in February raised the specter of 4-4 deadlocks in a number of high-profile cases for the term, and led to tied decisions on public-employee unions and the Obama administration’s immigration orders. But because Justice Elena Kagan had already recused herself—she filed an amicus brief on the case as solicitor general in 2012—Fisher couldn’t be one of those deadlocked cases.”

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