Links 7/21/2017

July 22, 2017
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Links 7/21/2017

Earth’s Tectonic Activity May Be Crucial for Life–and Rare in Our Galaxy Scientific American

Quantum teleportation is even weirder than you think Nature

Alphabay and Hansa Takedowns Ensnare Thousands of Dark Web Users Wired

Balanced budget ‘like shooting the economy in the head’ — experts Medium. The expert being Bill Black.

Should America’s Tech Giants Be Broken Up? Bloomberg

Google and Facebook lay foundations for modern-day company towns FT

Google Maps adds the International Space Station BBC

Syraqistan

Saudi Arabia – Bin Salman’s Coup Is A Model For His Own Ouster Moon of Alabama. We don’t hear much about the Qatar crisis these days…

Saudi accepted by Michigan college among 14 facing execution ABC

A Syrian Cordon Sanitaire: Is Israel huffing & puffing, or is it serious? Sic Semper Tyrannis

Brexit

May promises business leaders no Brexit ‘cliff edge’ for companies FT

British Exporters Aren’t Making Plans for Brexit Bloomberg

Deutsche Bank chief executive tells employees to prepare for a hard Brexit Independent

Brexit: more than 100,000 from North, Britain seek Irish passport Irish Times

Five more years of EU migration: Cabinet Remainers’ victory after agreeing ‘soft-landing’ transition period that will delay UK getting its borders back Daily Mail

BREXIT BACKTRACK Government delays starting work on the UK’s post-Brexit border system until AT LEAST October The Sun

Why German Turks are Numerous, Divided and Bitter Handelsblatt

Countering ‘hybrid’ security threats a priority, says EU EU Business (MT).

China

Exclusive: U.S. toughens stance on foreign deals in blow to China’s buying spree Reuters

Former vice chairman of China’s securities regulator found guilty of taking bribes FT

Health Care

GOP leaders plan Tuesday health vote, it’s an uphill climb AP

Key Trumpcare Holdout Says He’s A Yes If Guaranteed A Vote On His Amendment TPM

Senate Republicans complain of chaos in healthcare effort Reuters. “‘It really is starting to feel like a bazaar, $50 billion here, $100 billion there, and I feel like it’s losing coherency,’ Senator Bob Corker said.”

Mitch McConnell ‘master tactician’ label damaged after Senate health care fight CNN

Collins vows public will play major role in creation of new Senate health care plan Bangor Daily News. That’s not going to happen by next week.

Ron Johnson Accuses McConnell of ‘Significant Breach of Trust’ Weekly Standard (Furzy Mouse). A bit stale, but evidence that group dynamics in the Republican caucus have gone a little pear-shaped.

The Case Against the Public Option Jacobin

Trumpcare Is Dead. “Single Payer Is the Only Real Answer,” Says Medicare Architect The Intercept

Is Medicaid The New ‘Third Rail?’ History Suggests It Has Been For Some Time Health Affairs

New Cold War

China’s navy expands reach: Ships in Baltic for drills with Russia CNN

U.S. general says allies worry Russian war game may be ‘Trojan horse’ Reuters

The Northern Sea Route, Russia’s Coronary Artery World Policy (Re Silc).

Presidents v. Generals Andrew Bacevich, LRB

* * *

Trump team seeks to control, block Mueller’s Russia investigation WaPo. Reading the body of the article, “Russia investigation” seems a bit of a misnomer.

Trump Aides, Seeking Leverage, Investigate Mueller’s Investigators NYT. Reading the body of the article, big shake-up on Trump’s legal team.

Something to look forward to:

Trump’s Self-Pardon? Seriously? The American Conservative

Deutsche Bank ‘expects to face Trump-Russia probe’ Deutsche Welle

Trump Turns on Jeff Sessions The National Interest

Trump expected to make Scaramucci communications director Axios

Louise Mensch’s Destructive Fantasies Charles Cook, The National Review

Trump Transition

Trump’s Modest Proposal for a Nafta Revamp Bloomberg. “Surprisingly tame.”

A New Deal for Wall Street: Trump’s Plans for Mass Privatization Are a Colossal Giveaway to the 1% In These Times

Republicans lament an agenda in ‘quicksand’ Politico

Twitter says President Trump has to play by the same abuse rules as everyone Recode

Are Donald Trump’s Tweets Self-Authenticating? Above the Law

How Donald Trump is monetising his presidency The Economist

One in eight people who voted for Trump having second thoughts – Reuters/Ipsos poll Reuters

How Trump Is Transforming Rural America The New Yorker. Much more interesting than the headline. Last sentence: “The more they hate him, the more I want him to succeed. Because what they hate about him is what they hate about me.” And this tweet, in response:

Democrats in Disarray

Democratic Group Angers Progressives — Bets On Conservative Wing, Wall Street Money, To Win Back House International Business Times. Don’t get mad. Get even.

Hillary Clinton is more unpopular than Donald Trump. Let that sink in Guardian

White Liberal Guilt, Black Opportunism and the Green Party Black Agenda Report. Must-read, not merely for the GP but for the issues of party-building.

2016 Post Mortem

Hacking the Vote: Who Helped Whom? NYRB. This seems to be the Democrat theory of the case.

Imperial Collapse Watch

Exclusive: Bannon & Kushner Want to Outsource Afghanistan to Mercenaries The American Conservative. What could go wrong?

Is the Military Losing Its Ability to Fight Capable Foes? The American Conservative

Part I: F-35 in the Crossfire (podcast) Aviation Week. Part II.

Class Warfare

Another blow for heartland workers: Slashed pensions CBS (Re Silc)

Corporate Biopower as an Instrument of US Oligarchy emptywheel

The millennial left’s war against liberalism WaPo. More on Chapo Trap House.

Du Bois and the “Wages of Whiteness” Adolph Reed, Nonsite.org (DB). Anything by Reed is worth reading.

Eugene Debs and the Kingdom of Evil TruthDig (GF).

A New Class Politics Counterpunch (Re Silc). The woes of the European left.

Electronic monitoring isn’t kid-friendly Sacramento Bee

A few more thoughts on the Opportunity Corridor and Cleveland Clinic. Eat Righteous (CR). A response to this Politico story.

Aging in place contributes to historically low housing inventory Baltimore Sun. Translation: Why won’t those old black folks go die in nursing homes so we can gentrify their neighborhoods?

Antidote du jour:

Bonus anti-antidote:

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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About Lambert Strether

Readers, I have had a correspondent characterize my views as realistic cynical. Let me briefly explain them. I believe in universal programs that provide concrete material benefits, especially to the working class. Medicare for All is the prime example, but tuition-free college and a Post Office Bank also fall under this heading. So do a Jobs Guarantee and a Debt Jubilee. Clearly, neither liberal Democrats nor conservative Republicans can deliver on such programs, because the two are different flavors of neoliberalism (“Because markets”). I don’t much care about the “ism” that delivers the benefits, although whichever one does have to put common humanity first, as opposed to markets. Could be a second FDR saving capitalism, democratic socialism leashing and collaring it, or communism razing it. I don’t much care, as long as the benefits are delivered.

To me, the key issue — and this is why Medicare for All is always first with me — is the tens of thousands of excess “deaths from despair,” as described by the Case-Deaton study, and other recent studies. That enormous body count makes Medicare for All, at the very least, a moral and strategic imperative. And that level of suffering and organic damage makes the concerns of identity politics — even the worthy fight to help the refugees Bush, Obama, and Clinton’s wars created — bright shiny objects by comparison. Hence my frustration with the news flow — currently in my view the swirling intersection of two, separate Shock Doctrine campaigns, one by the Administration, and the other by out-of-power liberals and their allies in the State and in the press — a news flow that constantly forces me to focus on matters that I regard as of secondary importance to the excess deaths. What kind of political economy is it that halts or even reverses the increases in life expectancy that civilized societies have achieved? I am also very hopeful that the continuing destruction of both party establishments will open the space for voices supporting programs similar to those I have listed; let’s call such voices “the left.” Volatility creates opportunity, especially if the Democrat establishment, which puts markets first and opposes all such programs, isn’t allowed to get back into the saddle. Eyes on the prize! I love the tactical level, and secretly love even the horse race, since I’ve been blogging about it daily for fourteen years, but everything I write has this perspective at the back of it.

(Why?)

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