Last night

Charlie Pierce http://www.esquire.com/blogs/politics/presidential-debate-obama-2012-13353709#ixzz28MvarU1h”>on the Great Debate:

What you saw, I think, anyway, was the end product of the president’s consuming naivete as regards the American political process, as well as the end product of thirty years of a Democratic Party that has slid so far to the center-right that a Democratic president found himself arguing with a “severely conservative” Republican candidate over the issues of how much the Democratic president had cut out of the budget, how many regulations he’d trimmed, how much more devoted to the middle-class-kick-in-the-balls Simpson-Bowles “plan” he is, and how he would “reform” Social Security and Medicare — and, frankly, a Democratic president losing some of those arguments to his left. A Democratic president got through an entire debate and didn’t mention unions at all, even though the fact that our teachers are unionized here in Massachusetts is a big part of the reason why Romney got to brag on how good our education system is.

Seriously now, how much would you have bet going in that the president would spend as much time as he did on areas in which “Governor Romney and I agree” and not mention the famous 47-percent video at all? Of all of the night’s obvious surreality, that has to take the prize. By the time Willard got to his essential Tentherism — a severe form of wingnut crackpottery on which, of course, he was not called to account in any substantive way — I was sure that, somewhere, Al From, that greasy corporatist lackey, was smiling. He’s got the political process of his dreams. Of course, it is also the case that The Great Sellout is already under way, so what the hell does it matter.

Beware ‘tech support’ scams

Yes, the Internet is a jungle. A reminder from The Washington Post:

The Federal Trade Commission announced Wednesday that it has stopped six “massive” tech support scams that may have duped consumers out of millions of dollars.


According to an FTC release, telemarketers tricked people into buying a “service” to remove non-existent viruses and other malware. Users were also convinced to grant telemarketers remote access to their machines. The FTC called the scams “outrageous and disturbing.”

Virtually Speaking tonight

This should be a good one – Barofsky’s book was great!

Virtually Speaking with Jay Ackroyd – 6pm pacific 9pm eastern

Jay and Neil Barofsky discuss Neil’s new book, Bailout: An Inside Account of How Washington Abandoned Main Street While Rescuing Wall Street and the warring NYT reviews of Jackie Calmes and Gretchen Morgenson.

Currently a Senior Fellow at New York University School of Law, from Dec 2008 until Mar 2011, Neil served as Special Inspector General in charge of oversight of the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP). Before that he was a federal prosecutor in the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York.

Listen live or later http://www.blogtalkradio.com/virtuallyspeaking/2012/10/05/neil-barofsky-virtually-speaking-with-jay-ackroyd

Links:

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/25/books/bailout-by-neil-barofsky.html?pagewanted=all

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/22/business/neil-barofskys-journey-into-a-bailout-buzz-saw-fair-game.html?pagewanted=all

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2012/07/nyts-jackie-calmes-grossly-inaccurate-hit-piece-on-neil-barofsky.html

Trust us

I’ve read so many stories like this:

ST. LOUIS (AP) – Doris Spates was a baby when her father died inexplicably in 1955. She has watched four siblings die of cancer, and she survived cervical cancer.


After learning that the Army conducted secret chemical testing in her impoverished St. Louis neighborhood at the height of the Cold War, she wonders if her own government is to blame.


In the mid-1950s, and again a decade later, the Army used motorized blowers atop a low-income housing high-rise, at schools and from the backs of station wagons to send a potentially dangerous compound into the already-hazy air in predominantly black areas of St. Louis.


Local officials were told at the time that the government was testing a smoke screen that could shield St. Louis from aerial observation in case the Russians attacked.

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