Archive for April, 2015

don’t know much, but it’s interesting… the big market collapse

Thursday, April 23rd, 2015

So.  Just what happened that one day in 2010 when… out of nowhere… the stock market dived and collapsed?

Some guy did it.

On Tuesday, United States prosecutors said that much of the blame for the event could be pinned on a single person: a 36-year-old man who had been boldly manipulating markets from his suburban rowhouse just a few minutes from Heathrow Airport outside London, where he was arrested. […]

For the latest case, it took the authorities five years to track down a rogue actor making enormous trades. And, they were led to him only with the help of an outside whistle-blower.

Reading this skeptical report...

The flash crash was essentially over in five minutes. But it took regulators nearly five months to come up with a theory about what happened. And in late September 2010, when the SEC and the CFTC—the same agency now charging Sarao with causing the crash—released a joint report on what happened, they didn’t mention spoofing, let alone Sarao. Instead, they blamed a large trade by a firm out of Kansas City.

It’s not even clear that the feds’ new explanation is correct. As Matt Levine notes over at Bloomberg View, regulators believe that Sarao continued to place massive fake sell orders in the years after the flash crash, but somehow that activity never triggered another crisis…

In any event, more questions from sources that at first glance strike me  not without their own agenda.

Shall we believe that a single low-tech trader living in a leafy street of a London suburb contributed in any significant way to the Flash Crash?
Who said the Age of the Lone Amateur unencumbered by the Massive Organization is dead?

Was Waddell & Reed behind the unnamed whistleblower in an effort to clean its name and enhance its reputation?
Leading question.

Wasn’t one Flash Crash enough to better police the markets and stop Sarao for good?

the final month

Tuesday, April 21st, 2015

Speculators and speculating that Jay Leno on David Letterman

… as it seems confirmed that whatshisname… Bill Murray, guest number one on both the NBC and CBS program … will pop in for the last program.

One more possible final guest?  The one I think everyone wants to see… a favorite from the old Daytime tv show and the early years of the late night show.

Andy Kaufman.  That would be very much like him, wouldn’t it?

perenials and a tad off

Tuesday, April 21st, 2015

April 20th is an odd date — see

1939 – Adolf Hitler’s 50th birthday is celebrated as a national holiday in Nazi Germany.
1961 – Failure of the Bay of Pigs Invasion of US-backed Cuban exiles against Cuba.
1999 – Columbine High School massacre: Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold killed 13 people and injured 21 others before committing suicide at Columbine High School in Columbine, Colorado.
2010 – The Deepwater Horizon drilling rig explodes in the Gulf of Mexico, killing eleven workers and beginning an oil spill that would last six months.

You can throw April 19th in while you’re at it.

1995 – Oklahoma City bombing: The Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, USA, is bombed, killing 168.

And in a drip of notations about media spaces on these inglorious anniversaries, I had a small spit take when I saw this one this is a very strange article.

It’s been sixteen years since Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris reigned terror upon an unsuspecting Colombine High School and changed a community forever.  The two, dressed as members of the Trenchcoat Mafia, painfully reminded America of our own homegrown-terror threat posed by white supremacy groups.

That case, and the thing that is called “School shootings”, was always a Rorschach test, but this is a peculiar one.

The perpetrators were a) sinister circle of teenagers who flirted with the edges of the US’s extreme right-wing.

Basically what you have with this one is an attempt to co-opt the story into the framework of their political cause against extreme right wing groups.  It’s difficult for me to tell if the writer believes what they’re writing, or is cynical, but it is worse than the usual — which at least approach various concerns of media violence, gun culture, and bullying — that relate somewhat to the tragedy.

Who can stop Hillary Clinton?

Monday, April 20th, 2015

Looking over the list of Presidential stalwarts as found at wikipedia.  To round out my assorted list of Hillary Clinton adversaries…

… “exploring” Jim Webb, Lincoln Chafee, Bernie Sanders, Martin O’Malley
… Sort of thinking and being bandied about — Joe Biden, Jerry Brown
… Have said “no” but people want her that badly — Elizabeth Warren.

And actually running right now… apparently…

Jeff Boss, 9/11 Truther and perennial candidate from New Jersey[3][4]
Vermin Supreme, performance artist and perennial candidate from Massachusetts[5]
Robby Wells, Reform Party and Constitution Party presidential candidate in 2012 from North Carolina[6][7][8]

Of course they are…

In the “publicly expressed interest” category…

Paul Strauss, Shadow Senator from Washington, D.C. since 1997[38][39]

Well.  There’s always Alvin Greene.  And Jimmy McMillan.  And… ?

evolution of musical respecting

Thursday, April 16th, 2015

Cultural Anthropology of sorts.  Garth Brooks.  The Willamette Week heralds him from the early 1990s, in a sort of respect they probably would not have given him in the early 1990s.

The third iteration of Marilyn Manson I see in the Portland Mercury… from mocking their fans a decade ago, to saying “good for them” a few years ago when he was in town to saying he put out good music.

And the Dead Milkmen… now an important band with important things.  Go figure.

the non creation of a new presidency

Wednesday, April 15th, 2015

Absent something remarkable, and unlike in 2007 going into 2008 I don’t think this bit of conventional wisdom is inorrect, I don’t see how Hillary Clinton can be stopped as the Democratic nominee.  8 years ago, there was enough of a wedge in the Democratic Elite and misgivings about Clinton to allow for Barack Obama to win the nomination, today they’ve all pretty well aligned with Clinton.

So who do we have touting the possibilities?  Well la de da de da… LINCOLN CHAFFEE!!!  What’s even more impressive… he’s disavowing his vote for the removal of Glass Steagall.

So now the face of the Stop Hillary Clinton improbability consists of… repeatedly disavowed as running but either speculated about ad naseum or courted by activists… Elizabeth Warren and Jerry Brown.  And Bernie Sanders, Jim Webb, Lincoln Chaffee, and Martin O’Malley.

The Larouche Movement is going with Martin O’Malley, sidestepping the past two decades of steadfast support behind the Clinton Machine.
Dan Schmidt reporting.

The confused mumbling of what Martin O’Malley represents, lest you chunk the Larouche Movement and join the O’Malley Movement:

What is required is the creation of a Presidency, (re-phrasing what he was “attempting” at Obama’s inauguration with the “Institution”.) not a “President with followings.” Since we have, certainly, no President, and presently no Presidential candidate qualified to meet the challenges this crisis poses, we must set our intention to creating a Presidency around a candidate.
In that connection, O’Malley is the only one we know of who has the qualifications to head up a new Presidency—not a political party, but a Presidency, which will address the issues of a global water crisis.

He’s very Keplerian, you see…  As they implement NAWAPA …
The solution exists. We are qualified to fill it out. Our mission is to create a Presidency around it.
Does this mean that Martin O’Malley can expect to be hounded by Larouchies wherever he goes?  Or –?  Wins over faint praise by way of comments on the other candidates running with the two major parties…
“You take a case like Rand Paul, this guy’s a Nazi! He’s a Killer! He’s the enemy of civilization!”

Webster Tarpley Jumps off the Hillary Clinton Bandwagon.
Hillary Clinton has announced her candidacy for President of the United States. While the European press showers her with praise without thinking, Webster G. Tarpley recalls her balance sheet: in all circumstances, she supported war and corporate interests.
Fair enough commentary so far, but I’m stuck at the following: this was true enough in 2008, when Tarpley was stirring about the “PUMA” and arguing some ridiculous notion of an electoral realignment that included Oklahoma in the Democratic column.
Hm... Pardon my ignorance but what is a “LaRouchie”?
Perhaps a better question would be “What is Google?”
ah I know what Google is, but you seem to feel strongly about LaRouche so I thought I’d get your perspective. As far as I know LaRouche is a band.
And a classic from Berkley Breathed introduction to a “Bloom County” collection wraps it all up.

Where are they now
Then: A longtime resident of Selma, Amelia and her husband Samuel William Boynton began fighting for voting rights as far back as the 1930s. They worked closely with the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, allowing students to use their home as a meeting place. Boynton is often considered the catalyst for the Selma march, telling Dr. King he needed to come to the area. On Bloody Sunday, Robinson marched alongside many others as state troopers descended upon them. An image of her beaten unconscious on the ground became one of the day’s lasting images.
Now: At 103 years old, Robinson still has a sharp mind though her mobility is limited. However, she did attend this year’s State of the Union, invited by U.S. Rep. Terri Sewell (D-Al.) Throughout the years, she’s gone to commemorative Bloody Sunday events and served as the vice chairman of the Schiller Institute, founded by Helga Zeppa LaRouche, the wife of controversial figure Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr.


Yes.  There she is in this photograph marching in memorial with a person that “controversial figure” Lyndon H Larouche Jr has believes is embarking on a Nazi Genocide project…. and all the rest.
So long as Obama remains in office, the danger of general war—including war of thermonuclear extinction—remains far too real to tolerate.
History’s Mysteries…

Illinois… “Biggest Mistakes” of Politics:  Listen to his explanation of space and science here and you’ll understand why Stevenson was doomed when two LaRouche disciples landed on his ticket.).

Belitting some candidates running for local office in Chicago… Putting into the frame of reference of perenial candidates… next to Eugene McCarthy and apparently time has worn out Harold Stassen.

Cleon Skousen’s Five Thousand Year Leap? Really? That’s like plagiarizing Lyndon LaRouche. The choice of material to plagiarize is far worse than the act of plagiarism itself.

Free Speech.  Gotta Love it.  Over time, efforts to suppress speakers came from representatives of Canada, Japan and other governments. When a telephoned bomb threat disrupted a lecture by Congressman Paul Findley, a critic of Israel, we continued the presentation in a stairwell. When followers of radical Lyndon LaRouche tried to break up a meeting, they were escorted from the premises.

If you’re anything like us, you spent this weekend soaking in the finer points of life, knowing North Korea can defile the rest of our Western Capitalist Utopia at any time. We cracked open that 2009 Revana we bought in Napa. We went to the park and lived out the fantasy of stealing every person’s dog. We kissed life on the lips, let her smack us across our faces, and recoiled to proclaim “Worth it, and we’d do it again!”
In the meantime, North Korea was probably changing Mike Seaver’s Wikipedia, setting up a PAC for Lyndon LaRouche, and hacking our browser histories. You know, inspiring revolution where there’s none to be had.

A little spin on a LaRouchie suggestion. Lyndon wanted to ban people who smoke pot from voting. For two years after they quit partaking of spliff.

Story Number Four: United By Tragedy, and... ?

Lyndon LaRouche said that the people of France have begun to fight. They have realized that they must change French policies, which is a revolution in itself. France is mounting a heroic struggle; Germany has not reached that point, but we hope it will. France’s reaction could break into a new revolutionary improvement in the French economy and the French nation. Take the French situation now, and look at other parts of Europe, such as Greece. A revolution is occurring in France.

No.  Lyndon larouche still remains irrelevant to the situation at hand.

Story Number Five:  Jon Stewart dissects Vladimir Putin‘s government and propaganda machine.  Swarming about the mass we have this “ignore the log in our eyes for the dust mite in your eyes” malarky from William Jones to Russia TV.

And the beat moves on.


In push for openness on terrorism, Lynch unlikely hero of conspiracy theorists
Only 17 members have cosponsored the resolution proposed last December by Lynch and Representative Walter B. Jones of North Carolina, which calls for release on grounds that “the families of the victims and the people of the United States deserve answers about the events and circumstances surrounding the September 11, 2001, attacks.† In the meantime, the quest is making for some strange bedfellows. Lynch has become a hero of sorts to conspiracy theorists who assert US government complicity in the worst terrorist attacks in American history. Some of them, according to Lynch, show up at his town hall meetings to ask about the secret pages and interrupt the events to discuss their multiple theories about what really happened on 9/11, including that Israel was to blame for the terrorist attacks. One of these groups is the political action committee headed by longtime activist Lyndon LaRouche. LaRouche, the 92-year-old New Hampshire native whose anti-establishment movement has roots in the leftist activism of the 1960s, held a webcast last week about the issue (and for good measure called for the removal of the British monarchy and the impeachment of President Obama as the only way to save the world from imminent destruction)…. -Larouche historical destiny as a side show here.

Then there’s The recent world historical Schiller Conference in Manhattan
With additional “Kremlinology” found here.
1. Nancy Spannaus has been tossed off the NEC (first time for her in 45 years or so, but of course husband Ed has been thrown off the NEC moire times than Lyn can count).
2. Tony Papert is now in charge of Editorial, sworn to make up Nancy’s deficiencies with his own very special gifts.
3. No word yet on how the staff of Editorial is taking this, although I can certainly guess.
4. Word is that Nancy’s monumental gaffe was not to cover Helga’s latest “initiative” with the unrestrained enthusiasm it deserved.

From the Conservative National Review blog…

Toward the end of today’s Impromptus, I have a note on Lyndon LaRouche and his followers. I saw a few of them (the followers) on the streets of New York the other day. Hadn’t seen them in ages.
Yeah.  No reason to think about them after the “prosecution” / persecution.  Now you’re more likely to sledge through the “persecution” of murderer Mumia Abu Jamal — who, incidentally has more people clamoring for his “Political Prisoner” angle than Larouche ever had.

Hm.  This is the equivalent of Lyndon Larouche meeting with the President’s staff of France, Britain and Italy.
In the storyline they give, Larouche was in “talks” with Obama about the creation of an Institution.  Fell through.  They then announced Obama was Hitler.

party over…

Friday, April 10th, 2015

nationalreviewcoverfrathousething  Not having read this National Review cover article…

and without any respect to what I assume is the theme of a “pc” police having the Fraternity system under assault on this and that …

… wouldn’t fraternities easing away, somehow becoming passe, something of a relic of the past be… oh… a good thing?  Like, the image we have for the symbol of fraternity life is… the character played by John Belushi in Animal House… after all.


Truth in Advertisement…

Wednesday, April 8th, 2015

This is mind numbingly stupid.

On Tuesday, a consumer watchdog group called on DirecTV to pull the popular ads off the air after cable giant Comcast filed a complaint.

The commercials claim DirecTV has “better signal reliability than cable” and “shorter customer service wait times.” The Better Business Bureau National Advertising Division said those claims are “unsupported” and they should discontinue the ads.

“I think DirecTV thought, ‘We have a great campaign, people are talking about it. It’s entertaining people, and it’s working. Let’s run it untill we get the cease and desist,'” Los Angeles Times media writer Stephen Battaglio said.

In response to the ruling, DirecTV said the various Lowe advertisements are so outlandish and exaggerated that no reasonable consumer would believe the statements made in them require substantiation.

The theory of the ad is that there’s an alternate universe where a different Rob Lowe is using the cable competitor.  Yes.  That’s an unsupported claim.  I guess.

Or whatever unsubstantiated claim is in the latest Slim Jim ad campaign.  (Note:  the one I was thinking I would get involve some “cool” partier with Slim Jims and 2 girls dancing as against … hm… sad pouty fattish girl?)  The amusing thing here is to get to the commercials on youtube, you have to either sit through or skip a commercial.