Re: whatever.

1

I didn't expect too much out of him once he signed on to that telecom spying law, but this is a bit much. Harold Koh is often referred to as the first Asian Supreme Court Justice, but he's completely anti-Patriot Act, so maybe that won't happen on Obama's watch.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 02-28-10 2:29 PM
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A professor of mine once said the only difference between Democratic and Republic presidents on civil liberties was that Democrats feel conflicted about what they do.


Posted by: Minivet | Link to this comment | 02-28-10 2:39 PM
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3

Well now we've got our own Tony Blair. It's just like when they put the Monkees together. And what did we get out of the Monkees? Neil Diamond. There's a lesson in there somewhere.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 02-28-10 3:04 PM
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Neil Diamond would have achieved fame without the Monkees. I simply cannot accept a universe with that much randomness.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02-28-10 3:10 PM
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I don't know, man, things are pretty random. That's the one thing we have going for us against the stasi.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 02-28-10 3:43 PM
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I have to pick between the stasi and the Monkees. Can I have time to think about that one?


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02-28-10 4:30 PM
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7

hey hey we're the stasi
and people say we're snooping around
but if you don't have any secrets
there's nothing there to be found


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02-28-10 4:35 PM
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8

Actually, many of these lines don't need to be changed for the stasi. No wonder rock music took down communism.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 02-28-10 4:38 PM
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9

Did you know Henry Winkler was the producer for McGyver?


Posted by: David | Link to this comment | 02-28-10 4:59 PM
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10

I'm concerned that Obama is not actually a very good president.


Posted by: Spike | Link to this comment | 02-28-10 7:52 PM
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9: I did know that. I was a big McGyver fan.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 02-28-10 7:53 PM
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12

10: Greatest president of the 21st century.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 02-28-10 7:56 PM
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13

They're making a McGruber movie apparently.

Producer: Neil Diamond. Actually that second part is not true.


Posted by: text | Link to this comment | 02-28-10 10:02 PM
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Everything is true, even false things. Read your Principia Discordia.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 02-28-10 11:35 PM
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From the link in 8, the line, "We've got something to say" from the Monkees was such a filthy lie that Dick Cheney would have blushed to utter it.

Still, Neil Diamond. And even Mike Nesmith wrote a couple of songs that were OK when somebody else sang them.


Posted by: OFE | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 1:10 AM
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12 to 9. Winkler or McGyver, either works.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 7:15 AM
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17

Maybe Obama's campaign was really just an attempt to ensure that no one else ever gets into office with rhetoric like his.

Yes, future candidates will run on a platform and slogans:"There is no hope. There will be no change. No, we can't."

neb gave me so little negative space from which to troll this post, and my heart isn't in it anyway.

Watching Greece, Spain, Illinois. Hating Kunstler for being right.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 10:54 AM
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Or if not right, at least funny

We are left, finally, with a so-called health care system so cruel and unjust that the Devil himself in consultation with the most demonic lobbyists, and perhaps a little input from historical politicians such as Caligula, Ivan the Terrible, Heinrich Himmler, and Pol Pot could not construct a worse way of deploying the fruits of modern science. It has gotten to the point for most of us where we dread a visit to the doctor more for the bureaucratic consequences than the health issues themselves. Your gall bladder may have to come out, but it's much harder to face the booby-trap clause in your health insurance that will result in you getting stuck with a $123,000 bill for surgery and attendant procedures (including the $500 tylenols). Three months later, of course, the re-po man is towing your car and the mortgage "servicer" has foreclosed on your house, and your life (even without that pesky gall bladder) has become a permanent camping trip next to a drainage ditch.

Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 11:11 AM
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I'm Sure Glad the Recession Ended ...Mish has neat charts

Also good reading this morning: "Lenin" on Michael Moore and Louis Proyect on Paul Levi, Bela Kun, and Germany 1921. Links on request.

I guess a found a way to troll, My morning reading tends to excite me.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 11:49 AM
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19: Links requested please.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 11:54 AM
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21

As part of my mortgage application, I'm supposed to sign a document that's specifically required by the Patriot Act (and labeled as such). All I have to do is give my driver's license or passport number but I really, really hate having to sign it. If I don't, I'm condemned to a life of renting.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 12:07 PM
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Yeah, come on, bob. We're not looking to work at our procrastination here.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 12:11 PM
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23

This seems vaguely related, but my brother was trying to convince me yesterday that a credit report from one of the three big credit-reporting agencies would indicate how often a person purchased liquor at one of the state monopoly ABC stores, and so, if one wants to buy liquor, one should always—always—pay in cash. It was…odd.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 12:13 PM
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23: They'll pry my liquor bottles from my cold, drunk hands.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 12:22 PM
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20

1) Moore's Kapital

2) History of the Internationals, Pt 3 but Proyect is apparently going to write several posts debunking "the notion of a wise and efficacious Comintern."

3) And while I am pretending to be a Socialist, here is
Richard Estes with a compassionate take on the recent SWP internal troubles.


Posted by: bob mcmanus | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 12:33 PM
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23: It used to be you could reply to that kind of paranoia by saying "come on, the government has better things to do than track your liquor purchases." But these days, the fact that a form of surveillance is stupid and pointless is no barrier to the government performing it.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 12:47 PM
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Your brother might not be so far off the track. Let's say your health insurance provider is able to get access to that information, for example. You know they'd want it and would use it in a skinny minute to up your rates. Plus, best I can tell, the goal of both parties is to give Big Insurance everything they could ever want. You should probably always pay cash for tobacco as well.


Posted by: apostropher | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 12:54 PM
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That isn't stupid and pointless! The credit companies keep track of everything to find correlations with which people can be squeezed for the most money. Buying birdseed, buying pizza, spending at certain times of the day...


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 12:55 PM
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29

I avoid all those problems by paying cash for my insurance.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 1:02 PM
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..the current _Economist_ has a whole section on data-mining. Mildly interesting, mildly creepy. My favorite bit is that NCR, which built the first automated ("incorruptible") cash register, is now data-mining.


Posted by: clew | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 2:55 PM
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31

You know who's big in the world of data mining? Cosma Shalizi! Fact.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 2:59 PM
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32

Well, even if they do "keep track," it sure as hell is not on one's Equifax report or whatever.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 3:05 PM
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33

I think I mentioned that I was quoted recently as saying "Be discrete, or, more importantly, don't cheat."

Other wise tidbits:

If you are committing adultery, use cash for the hotel.

Get a disposable cell phone. Pay cash.

Dont use an email account that your spouse knows about.

Don't sleep with your boss or people that work for you.


Posted by: Will | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 3:14 PM
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34

33: Maybe you should start a consultancy for professional athletes.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 3:18 PM
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35

Bob,

How can read Mish now that he's turned all "unions are the biggest problem facing America today"? Doesn't that sort of conflict with your worldview?

Not that he doesn't have somewhat of a point in some of the examples he cherrypicks, but still.


Posted by: F | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 6:08 PM
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One distressing aspect of a lot of the realistic anti-vampire squid finance bloggers is that they are actually hardcore libertarians whose greatest nemesis is our Big Government, without which monopolies and useless rent-seeking would not exist because the companies doing it would be driven out of business by reputational factors and creative destruction (presumably over a multi-millennium time frame).

As such, they also hate unions. Taunter, for example, said almost nothing but things that make sense, except that he not only hates the unions that exist today, but he seems to hate anyone who would consider joining a union at all, because doing so reveals that that person is not confident in his ability to negotiate a good wage, and therefore that person presumably does not deserve a good wage and is looking to join a union to leech off of others.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 6:39 PM
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37

I used to read Mish more, but his non partisan hard right ideology is more grating than it used to be. Evil, evil socialism (defined as anything to the left of Maggie), kill the unions, kill, kill, kill. The biggest problem with the US is that the poor get to many benefits and the lower middle class earns too much, slash the wages now, end their benefits.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 6:53 PM
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38

I've said this before, but the hostility to the very concept of collective bargaining on the right is bizarrely one sided. You never hear outrage at the fact that all those shareholders aren't all individually negotiating with each and every employee. I've occasionally had a completely unrealistic fantasy where the Repubs ban collective bargaining and the courts ban all non directly hands on owner managed companies as a result.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 6:57 PM
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39

But a corporation is just one person. A union is an amalgamation of thousands of persons! Talk about a mismatch!


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 7:10 PM
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40

if one wants to buy liquor, one should always--always--pay in cash. It was...odd.

No good. The video cameras outside the ATM will record your withdrawal and the video cameras in the liquor store will record your purchase and the two can then be easily linked by the time-stamps. Better just to make your own hootch with the ingredients which you've purchased (bartered for is better yet) from multiple sources over a period of several months.

Of course, I suppose I shouldn't be saying all this on a non-secure line.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 7:18 PM
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41

I will freely admit that unions refusing to take a freeze on pay when their employers are in legitimate dire straits is insane. Unfortunately, they've been driven to this by decades of bad faith negotiating. It's the Prisoner's Dilemma writ large.


Posted by: F | Link to this comment | 03- 1-10 9:55 PM
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33: a conversation with a PI last year resulted in two interesting titbits:
a) Flowers are a giveaway; apparently it's a true cliche that men en route from the mistress to the wife pick up some flowers on the way...
b) Suspicion = proof: once a spouse has got to the point of hiring a PI, he/she is always right. My interlocutor had never been hired for a case and failed to find that the husband (or, more rarely, wife) was having an affair.

33 also sounds like Moscow Rules. Or, more relevantly, Stringer Rules.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 03- 2-10 4:06 AM
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a conversation with a PI last year resulted in two interesting titbits

Conversations with PIs are a dead giveaway, ajay.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 03- 2-10 6:16 AM
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43: Sometimes it is the billboard in Times Square that is the dead giveaway. (Or did I miss this being covered here already?)


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 03- 2-10 10:49 AM
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