RIP Lou Reed Open Thread

What a guy.

 

Feel free to leave thoughts on anything that seems worth talking about below.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

Federal business opportunity

(#309855)

Not really an opportunity, since it's a sole source contract awarded to Pepperball Technologies:

ICE has a requirement to purchase Less Lethal Launcher Kits for Federal Protective Services (FPS). FPS agents will use the identified kits for training purposes as required by agency policy. This action will be a Firm Fixed-Price Contract with an estimated cost for this acquisition of $498,970.00. The vendor is Pepperball Technologies, Inc., 6142 Nancy Ridge Drive, San Diego, CA 92121-3289.

3. Description of Supplies/Services
The vendor shall provide the following items:

 

(100) TAC 700 Launchers
(39 Boxes) Inert Projectiles (1 box contains 3,000 projectiles =117,000)
(40 Boxes) Live X Projectiles (1 box contains 3,000 projectiles =120,000)
(36) Riot Expansion Kit's

120,000 live pepper spray cartridges.  Just for training.

 

Any speculation on what a "Riot Expansion Kit" contains?

 

That number is too close to $500K

(#309866)

Sounds like a sweetheart deal if there ever was one.

I am not a pessimist. I am an incompetent optimist.

See this is bad. I'd take riot control in a whole new direction

(#309862)

I'd like a launcher that launches square foot sections of bubble wrap.  Even zombies stop to pop bubble wrap.

"Down with the man! Down with the man! Down with the....what's this?  *pap, pap, pap* Down with...uhm uh....*pap,pap, pap*...whetever guys, you go on ahead."

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

Heh. SEC has foreclosure papers on file

(#309861)

over here

 

EDIT:  and there's this interesting bit from BidnessWeak:

 

Pepperball Technologies Inc (PBAL) Key Developments

SEC Orders Hearing On Registration Suspension Or Revocation Against PepperBall Technologies
Sep 10 13

In conjunction with trading suspension, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) also instituted a public administrative proceeding to determine whether to revoke or suspend for a period not exceeding twelve months the registration of each class of the securities of PepperBall Technologies, Inc. for failure to make required periodic filings with the Commission. In this Order, the Division of Enforcement (Division) alleges that the company is delinquent in its required periodic filings with the Commission. In this proceeding, instituted pursuant to Exchange Act Section 12(j), a hearing will be scheduled before an Administrative Law Judge. At the hearing, the judge will hear evidence from the Division and the company to determine whether the allegations of the Division contained in the Order, which the Division alleges constitute failures to comply with Exchange Act Section 13(a) and Rules 13a-1 and/or 13a-13 there under, are true. The judge in the proceeding will then determine whether the registrations pursuant to Exchange Act Section 12 of each class of the securities of the company should be revoked or suspended for a period not exceeding twelve months. The Commission ordered that the Administrative Law Judge in the proceedings issue an initial decision not later than 120 days from the date of service of the order instituting proceeding.

Expansion kit? That's the

(#309859)

"450 Patriot Riot Vest" to you son.

 

To the untrained eye it looks a lot like a bottle of compressed air with straps so you can wear it. Plus some little pouches. Allowing you to fire up to 450 rounds. 

 

But I'm quite sure it's more complex than that and probably made by Patriots out of Tactical materials.

That TAC 700 Launcher

(#309858)
aireachail's picture

is a glorified paintball gun with a rate of fire of 700 rounds per minute. Give trainees 100 of those bad boys and even 120,000 pepper spray cartridges will require pretty stingy rationing. After all, this doesn't look like the kind of thing you'd train to use in a single-fire mode.

 

All in all, that seems like a pretty modest supply to me!

 

 

I'm going to guess that the kit...

(#309857)

...doesn't actually contain anything for expanding riots.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

The breadth of the Obama Big Lie

(#309851)
Bird Dog's picture

First, the pledge.

“No matter how we reform health care, we will keep this promise to the American people: If you like your doctor, you will be able to keep your doctor. Period. If you like your health care plan, you will be able to keep your health care plan. Period. No one will take it away. No matter what. My view is that health-care reform should be guided by a simple principle: Fix what’s broken and build on what works.”

Emphasis mine. This was repeated more or less constantly through 2012. In 2010, the Obama administration knew that 93 million Americans would be unable to keep their health plans under Obamacare.

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

That old story about the bucket

(#309854)

A man went to his neighbor to ask him to return a bucket the neighbor had borrowed.  The neighbor asked for some time to to think about it.  The next day the neighbor came over and said he had three answers.  First,  he never borrowed any bucket.  Second,  he'd returned it a long time ago.  Third, there's no point in returning it anyway,  because it's broken.

 

The Obamacare supporters have three answers, too.  First,  no one is forced to give up their insurance.  Second,  those millions of people forced to give up their insurance will get much better insurance.  Third, we're going to propose legislation to fix this massive problem.

Four, a loophole in law the corporations were aware of,

(#309860)
brutusettu's picture

the corporations walked the contracts through the loophole.

"Jazz, the music of unemployment."

 

Frank Zappa

Oh no loopholes

(#309865)

Maybe some evil libertarians snuck into the office and put loopholes in the bills.  It's impossible to imagine any other way loopholes could have got into a bill passed only with non-Republican votes.

We agree,

(#309883)
brutusettu's picture

People shouting Obama is teh Socialist giving handouts are unhinged or unhelpful shameless d*****bag liars.

 

 

--nonetheless, will Anti-HilaryCare be a net improvement or not, so far signs point to nominal net improvements, right?

"Jazz, the music of unemployment."

 

Frank Zappa

He's giving handouts

(#309886)

just that the handouts are to the insurance companies.

Still the establishment candidate, still beatable from the left

(#309836)

Overall, 46% registered a positive view of the ex-secretary of state, compared to 33% who expressed a negative opinion. As recently as April, 56% saw Mrs. Clinton in a positive light. ...

In April ... 53% of 18-to-34-year olds had a positive image of Mrs. Clinton in the Journal’s polling. That figure fell to 38% in the new survey.

In that same period, Mrs. Clinton’s support among independents fell from 46% to 35%. Her support among Democrats fell 12 points – from 88% to 76%.

 

http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2013/10/31/hillary-clintons-ratings-slip-in-new-poll/

By Whom?

(#309843)
M Scott Eiland's picture

By this point in the 2008 cycle, Obama was already famous and an obvious "real deal," though still a heavy underdog against HRC. If you're thinking Elizabeth "Fauxcahontas" Warren, please encourage every Democrat you can to go that way. I'm too young to remember the election of 1972 and would love to see a reprise without all the Watergate baggage.

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

It's still too far out to make any guesses.

(#309844)

The Republicans don't have anyone promising in the bullpen.  Everyone loathes Cruz, none more than the old Republican bulls. Who else is out there?  Christie?  The GOP establishment hates him almost as much as Cruz, though truth is, Christie is about as good as the GOP has just now.  If Hillary ran against any of the current GOP jamokes, she'd win in a landslide.  After the Big Shootout at the Shutdown Corral, the GOP is still trying to find out where its ass went after it was violently detached in the tussle.

I Dunno...

(#309880)

This apparent locked-in consensus Hillary has worries me.

 

First, I don't like her much. But that's kind of anecdotal. Who cares whether I like her?

 

Second, she has proven to be a lousy campaigner, with poor leadership skills under pressure, or poor ability to choose lieutenants, which is the first leadership skill really.

 

Third, she's untested against a serious Republican campaign. She will get hit, and hard, over every crime and misdemeanor even tangentially associated with the Clintons. At least some people are worried about this already.

 

She does have tons of money and will also have the back of a good chunk of the corporate establishment, unless the GOP makes a hard center turn and goes for someone like Christie. But that looks unlikely right now. If anything the GOP may come closer than people think to nominating Cruz.

 

Still, my broader point is that I am bothered by a lack of redundancy on the Democratic side. A single overwhelming candidate like Hillary means that there is unlikely to be a viable backup if her bid is in trouble.

I am not a pessimist. I am an incompetent optimist.

I'm worried about a Hillary presidency

(#309922)

corporate centrist D governance for the next ten years is at the least going to absolutely cement the country's decline under Bush II and Obama.

 

How in this day and age can there be no viable liberal candidate to challenge her? She's running around appearing in support of the hated centrist Terry McAuliffe and talking about the need for a new tone of compromise and bipartisanship in washington. She couldn't possibly be more tone deaf to the liberal activist base, and she's been beaten before from the (perceived) left. Is it possible no one is going to give her a run for her money?

Corporate centrism is where the majority is.

(#309925)
mmghosh's picture

You know, like the 51%.

 

Radicals are doomed to fail, always, until their policies appeal to the moderate centre.  Look at what happened to Enrique Penalosa, for example.

The Majority of The Money You Mean

(#309976)

I don't meet people who claim to be "corporate centrists" all that often ever. But that sure is where the bucks can be found.

 

And let's be clear here, "corporate centrism" really means right-wing economic policy plus gay marriage and a couple of other bones thrown in for key democratic constituencies. It is far from a liberal agenda by any stretch of the imagination.

I am not a pessimist. I am an incompetent optimist.

Third Might Not Be Such A Problem

(#309916)
M Scott Eiland's picture

If she can come back after the utterly vicious stuff thrown at her by her own party in the 2008 election cycle (here and elsewhere, in case anyone is suffering from convenient amnesia), mere Republicans should be no problem, particularly if the media decides to return to its traditional role of covering for the Clintons.

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

Is Huntsman out?

(#309912)

For all I know he's dead, given what I've heard of him in the last year.  Then again, a smart moderate-conservative Republican would sit back and let the loons shiv each other for another year or so, certainly until after the mid-terms anyway.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

It Doesn't Matter

(#309915)
M Scott Eiland's picture

Even if this new report is total BS, it will just add to the base's impression of the man as an enemy within (and if it is true and Jr. did the slightest thing to encourage his old man to help Reid slime Romney, they would be correct--and Romney owes him a good right cross to the jaw). Now, if Huntsman reinvented himself and stressed what he personally believes in rather than what he hasn't been able to stop sneering at the base about, he might be able to do better if the field is particularly weak following a few self-destructs (Cruz, Rubio, the latest incarnation of Gingrich, Santorum still being Santorum)--but he will still have his own past to deal with, and he will have to convince the base that he in no way helped Harry Reid directly or indirectly to spread lies or leak privileged information (I'm being charitable by allowing that as a potential reality) about Romney in a (at least then) close electoral race.

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

Is it possible he personally believes

(#309918)

that the base is filled with innumerate morons who learn about politics from watching Glenn Beck? Nah, couldn't be. Oh look, there's the door....

"Hell is truth seen too late." --Thomas Hobbes

If He Believes That. . .

(#309942)
M Scott Eiland's picture

. . .I hear Media Matters is always looking for new minions--running for President as a Republican is probably not the best career plan.

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

Republican career plans

(#309945)

If Obama doesn't help out Republicans with their career plans it's not for lack of trying. We Democratic voters just love how many he's put into top positions in his admin., and how the conservative wing controls both parties' leadership.

You can't be King of the Fools

(#309944)

unless you can plausibly act like one.

"Hell is truth seen too late." --Thomas Hobbes

I'm an Anyone-but-Biden man myself.

(#309882)

What a mess he would make of things.  Any Republican could crush him like a bug.

Ah Yes

(#309887)
M Scott Eiland's picture

The guy they put on the ticket for gravitas, as I recall. How's that worked out for Democrats?

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

He's the avuncular Straight Man

(#309888)

for all of the current administration's jokes.  

 

EDIT:  ... who has, inadvertently, become the punch line for far too many of those jokes.  Painfully embarrassing.

It's A Sign Of The General Incompetence. . .

(#309890)
M Scott Eiland's picture

. . .of the Obama Administration that Biden's perpetual gaffe-ing is a mere footnote in media coverage of said Administration--there are bigger fish to fry. I wouldn't waste any effort on hoping "Anyone But Biden"--he wouldn't be the alternative if HRC implodes again: if it looks like he's going to become the frontrunner *someone* will emerge out of the resulting spasm of existential horror--that might be the scenario that would get (*snicker*) Elizabeth Warren the nomination.

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

The polling says he's currently second, presume you know that...

(#309892)

Backing Elizabeth Warren at this stage is just emotional fanboi madness.   She's far better utilised in the Senate anyway.   Sneering at her, well, I suppose everyone finds something funny.  Ted Cruz is the Senate's worst joke and he's already sniffing around Iowa.  Think he's leading the polls just now.  Nominating him is even more stupid than Romney, last time round.  The Confederacy of Dunces would vote for Cruz, though.  He'd lose bigger than Romney, too.  

 

Cruz would be a disaster for the GOP.  But hey, the GOP keeps nominating these Fire in the Belly types, McCain, Romney, why not Cruz, too?   Have him put that little maniac Paul Ryan on the ticket as Veep.  There's a can't-lose move.  Or hey, just run Paul Ryan.  The GOP just never learns.

Trump Was Leading Among Republicans At One Point Last Cycle

(#309897)
M Scott Eiland's picture

Cruz won't get anywhere, except he'd do better than Huntsman and the other Republican minor leaguers did last time: given that McCain was at 1% at one point in the 2008 cycle I may be underestimating Rubio's chances--particularly if the Democrats and/or the media continue to contrive retarded reasons for mocking him like the water glass incident--but he will have to do better to avoid Perry-esque base-offending gaffes.

Biden is second because HRC is the obvious front-runner right now, and no one else with even positional gravitas is rising up to oppose her (again, Obama was already the next big thing by late 2005). If she implodes, others will enter the race or intensify their current efforts. Biden as the Democratic nominee in 2016 would be as if Quayle had run in 1996 if Bush the Elder had somehow managed to win in 1992--the jokes would write themselves.

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

Too much Cruz tar has rubbed off on Rubio.

(#309900)

Rubio should have known better than to get tied up with Cruz' grandstanding.  Rubio and Rand Paul both did serious damage to their brands at the Big Shootout at the Shutdown Corral.  The base they're firing up -- and they have fired 'em up -- is not a sufficient base to win a presidential election.

 

If Biden had any sense, he'd get out of politics.  He's just been around too long.  Go off to some think tank, earn some bucks, enjoy some time off.   Hillary's enjoying her time off, so it's said.   If she ran, I think she'd win -- but that's only with the presupposition of the jamokes-du-jour running against her.  

 

Hillary is 66 now.  Reagan was 69 when he was elected.   She would be hamstrung as a President.  The people who hate her reeallyreally hate her.  She'd be just another Obama at best, a polarising figure, might actually be a good president.  She got along better with Republicans than most people realise.   

 

But I don't see anyone else with the mojo to oppose her if she ran.   Can you imagine Bill Clinton as First Husband?   Oh. My. God.

Bubba Might Be The Only Thing That Stops HRC

(#309914)
M Scott Eiland's picture

Particularly given that if she wins, HRC's first act as President will be to task the Secret Service to (metaphorically, technically) cutting off Bubba's nuts. They'll be able to measure the heavily armed buffer zone between him and the nearest adult female in *kilometers* (-:[

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

That's not where Bill would do the most damage.

(#309968)

He would dilute Hillary's mandate in a dozen ways.  Sure, he's a great politician, a natural-born political genius.  He'd make a great advisor but not a good First Husband.  We've seen other First Spouses dilute the president's mandate, whether or not they were actually involved.

 

Bubba has bigger stones than his enemies.  Bigger stones than Obama, for all that.  He intimidates Obama to this day.  Bill Clinton was Obama's political model but as with all living role models, there's always a sort of Father-Son thing going, a natural conflict.  While Bill Clinton is alive, he's always going to cast a shadow on the Democratic Party.

 

Bill's pecker is his own business.  The Republicans have been obsessed with that organ for a long time.  Envy, I suppose.  

Thorium backing in the UK

(#309830)

Scientists at the UK’s National Nuclear Laboratory (NNL) have been encouraged by the government to help research on an Indian thorium-based reactor, and on a test programme in Norway.

 

Necropants

(#309751)

Like I said, necropants

Very nice.

(#309753)
aireachail's picture

Unfortunately, I require a longer rise.

You didn't warn us it was illustrated.

(#309752)

NSFW.  NSFH.  NSFanywhere.

"I would suggest the website has never crashed"

(#309745)
Bird Dog's picture

Maybe Sebelius has a different definition of "crash" than the rest of the world. Otherwise, under under this sensible definition...

A crash is a condition in which a computer program stops performing as expected and also stops responding to other parts of the system.

...then it appears that what she said was patently false. Sebelius was right when she said, "You deserve better."

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

Good thing or bad thing? This is CNN

(#309742)
Bird Dog's picture

Jon Stewart is on a roll.

 

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

Because that's what fascists do

(#309740)
Bird Dog's picture

Courtesy of Anderson Cooper:

 

 

“What is going on is, behind the scenes attempt by the White House to at least keep insurerers from publicly criticizing what is happening on this Affordable Care Act rollout. Basically, if you speak out, if you are quoted, you’re going to get a call from the White House, pressure to be quiet,” reports CNN.

“Several sources tell me and my colleague Chris Frates that insurance executives are being told to keep quiet. [The head of] a consulting firm for big insurance and an out spoken critic of Obamacare says he is getting calls from these executives who want him to speak out, Anderson, for them about the problems because they feel defenseless against the White House PR team. … the White House is exerting massive pressure on the industry, including the trade associations, to keep quiet. Sources telling us they fear White House retribution.”

 

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

This looks like a lot of entertainment

(#309738)

for only $37  but I'm scared of getting on the wrong kind of mailing list.  

Man, between Catchy and you I'm seeing some nutty

(#309767)

links. I've already said my bit to Brut and those geese raping cats recordings he calls music. Now I've got dead legs, and prepper nuts I've got to work through. Though I did like the 'How to avoid urban warefare' bit. I dunno what the course says but I think I have a pretty solid plan. It involves living in other than an urban environment.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

Fascinating article on the CIA supporting modern art

(#309733)

Did the NSA kill BlackBerry?

(#309728)
mmghosh's picture

/conspiracy theory

 

All we hear over here is that BlackBerry is dead, killed by Android and iOS.  I was going to change my phone to a BlackBerry (having been a transient 6-month user), but will now probably not.  Why?  Because BBM is now available on iOS and Android.

 

http://reviews.cnet.com/software/bbm-ios/4505-3513_7-35831140.html

 

The upside of BBM has always been security.  In fact, too much security, according to our Government.  Apparently BlackBerry has been relatively invulnerable to NSA probing, too. Hence my latest conspiracy theory.

Huh?

(#309731)

I think it's pretty obvious that the iPhone, and its copies, killed BlackBerry. The company was blindsided and was in active denial for years before it reacted. Internal memos, now well-known, show that they did not believe the iPhone demoed by Jobs was real. For example, they figured it could not have more than a couple of hours of battery life.

 

BB was no more invulnerable to the NSA than anybody else. It was the prime phone of government officials and corporate executives everywhere for close to a decade. No way the NSA would let that slip by. Canada is one of the five Echelon countries.

 

Sorry, no conspiracy here. Just Steve Jobs teaching incumbents how to do their jobs, again, with a sole product in the category. I miss the guy already. iOS 7 is so horrible looking, I cannot digest it.

I am not a pessimist. I am an incompetent optimist.

Tom, come over here for a sec

(#309702)
Bird Dog's picture

The proper nomenclature is douchebag, not absolute as**ole.

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

In This Case, The Venn Diagrams Definitely Intersect -nt-

(#309707)
M Scott Eiland's picture

.

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

It’s hard to explain puns to kleptomaniacs

(#309690)

because they always take things literally.

Eugene O'Neill had a great off-Broadway piece all about puns.

(#309704)

It was a play on words. 

"Hell is truth seen too late." --Thomas Hobbes

That really goes without saying

(#309706)

The first rule of Tautology club is the first rule of Tautology club.

These jokes may look terrible and they may sound terrible, but

(#309711)

don't let that fool you. They really are terrible.

"Hell is truth seen too late." --Thomas Hobbes

This reminds me of a joke

(#309718)

The past, present and future walk into a bar.  The situation was very tense.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

We did nothing to deserve that -nt

(#309695)

.

It's what you didn't do eeyn. If you're not part of the solution

(#309696)

you're part of the precipitate.

This is what fascists do

(#309684)
Bird Dog's picture

They raid a reporter's home on the pretense that her husband is suspected of illegal firearm possession, then confiscate the reporter's confidential records (which is completely unrelated to the search warrant) and disseminate those records to other governmental agencies. dKos and WA Times are in agreement.

 

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

Been watching this for a while now

(#309756)

It sure does look stinky.  Snowden really has put a lot of teeth on edge.  

Outrage fatigue

(#309693)

Just a reminder to Democrats that a vote for Hillary in the 2016 primaries is a solid vote for an ever-expanding, lawless national security state. 

Very not cool

(#309686)

Time for a big flowery show of bipartisanship on the Hill.  Paul and Wyden need to co-sponsor a Law Enforcement Demilitarization bill or something.  Before a Republican gets back in the White House, otherwise only Bob Barr will be left on his side of the aisle.

I would have called this diary...

(#309669)

...Take a Walk On The Dead Side.

I am not a pessimist. I am an incompetent optimist.

And the colored girls sing

(#309672)

dead de dead dead dead de dead de dead dead dead de dead.....

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

Public transport!

(#309663)
mmghosh's picture

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/oct/28/railway-industry-br...

 

Consider the fate of the east coast mainline, which runs between London, the north-east and Scotland. In 2006 GNER lost its contract to run trains along the route when its Bermuda-registered parent company filed for bankruptcy. The franchise then went to National Express, which soon defaulted on its payments. So the then-Labour government created a not-for-profit public operator called Directly Operated Railways, which has run the service for the last four years with much success.

 

Since 2009, DOR has paid £602m into public funds: over £200m more than National Express did, and £209m more than Virgin Rail – the franchise-holder for the west coast mainline – has managed during the same period. Its public subsidy is comparatively minimal – seven times less than that paid last year to Virgin. Its record on safety improvements is jaw-dropping: "major customer accidents" are down 81% since 2009. And customer satisfaction and punctuality are at unprecedented highs.

 

Now, of course, the government wants to re-privatise it – which is where things get truly absurd. Among the top bidders for the franchise is a consortium split between Eurostar and Keolis, both majority-owned by the French state firm SNCF. As well as Virgin, another probable contender will be Arriva, the British train company wholly owned by Deutsche Bahn, which is in turn wholly owned by the German government.

---

The Greens' Caroline Lucas, a rare voice of sanity, recently tabled a private member's bill outlining a simple alternative: that over time, as rail franchises expire, they should be restored to public ownership – which would cost peanuts, repatriate a fair bit of money, and commence the abolition of all the complex and costly stupidities that privatisation produced.

---

Who will eventually supply the trains and actually run HS2 remains unclear. But as well as the prospect of state-owned European firms getting involved, the China Railway Group and China South Locomotive and Rolling Stock Corporation – again, government-owned enterprises – have registered an interest in bidding for contracts.

So, because I live in an actual democracy

(#309654)

i get, every month or so, asked to vote on this or that thing, usually a constitutional amendment to tackle an issue big or small. Should we deport non national criminals? Should Swiss service members be armed for self defense if serving overseas? Should the federal government be able to require certain critical workers to be vacinated or stand down in the case of an epidemic?

 

That sort of thing.

 

But last week a truly intriguing one dropped onto the door mat [note to NSA. I do not have an in-door letterbox. My mail is delivered to a post box outside my house. I mention it in case it becomes relevant at any point in the future. I would hate for one of the field guys to be embarassed].

 

It's the 1 in 12 initiative.

 

This WSJ article seems to do a reasonable job of explaining. Esentially, the new law, if approved by the people, would limit top executive pay to 12 times that of the lowest paid worker.

 

One month of his labour can not be worth more than a year of the lowest paid worker.

 

I don't expect this initiative t pass. The Swiss have just approved the Minder intiative (to the howls of the business lobby) that gives shareholders stronger powers to control executive pay. It has yet to have an effect and people are happy to wait and see.

 

But the polls show how much support there is for controlling executive exesses and making Switzerland a more equal society:

http://www.swissinfo.ch/eng/swiss_news/Poll_results.html?cid=37145110 

 

 

The motivations are not, I suspect, greed, envy or stupidity. Look again at that poll and the second initiative showing a majority in favour of increasing motorway fees (by over 100%). That is people voting to raise their own taxes. 

 

I suspect that the dual concerns of being priced out of their own country by an imported pirate executive class and a stern protestant work ethic are at work. Swiss, for sure, don't hate rich people, but I don't think many Swiss really believe that the top executives on $100 million contracts are really worth it. They smell, in a world where the real ration between highest and lowest wages in the country has moved from 15 to 1 to more like 100 to 1 on average over 20 years, a rat. Somebody has their hand in the till.

 

So, as I said, i expect this initiaive will fail. But had it been set at 20:1 or 50:1? Who knows.

 

I'd be interested to hear your international views on the subject.

 

 

Works For Me

(#309708)
M Scott Eiland's picture

Other countries doing insane things is a nice canary in the coal mine that shuts down the nutcases here who claim "it can't happen."

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

Of Course, This Is Fine With Me Too

(#311695)
M Scott Eiland's picture

Canary declines to commit suicide, 65-34.

The universe may well have been created without a point--that doesn't imply that we can't give it one.

as if conservatives pay any attention

(#309713)

to what goes on in other countries. You may know 'other countries' as those places with universal public health insurance that have all slipped into totalitarianism.

 

... Rest assured if this is implemented and works just fine for the next 50 years, the vast majority of conservatives of that time will believe it's a harbinger of impending communism.

 

I spit on the average conservative's understanding of what works and doesn't work in foreign countries.

Go ahead and vote for a 12:1 ratio

(#309703)

Why are we only ever allowed to make mistakes on the conservative end these days? There's so many redundant mechanisms in place to correct for liberal economic overreach if it doesn't work out, just go for it.

 

Plus there's even more reason to vote for it if it's slated to fail. At least a strong showing will let executives know they're on thin ice and better let shareholders protect the company's interest in not over-compensating its executives. 

 

Just so you know, no American is jealous of you, so put that out of your head. We love living in a country and reading news stories everyday on figures like the CEO of JC Penney, who's presided over a 75% stock decline while earning 1800x the average worker. It's what makes this country so awesome.

Grad School Barbie

(#309635)

 

Graduate School Barbie comes in two forms: Delusional Master’s Barbie (TM) and Ph.D. Masochist Barbie (TM).

Every Graduate School Barbie comes with these fun-filled features guaranteed to delight and entertain for hours: Grad School Barbie comes out of the box with a big grin on her face that turns into a frown after 2 weeks or her first advisor meeting (whichever comes first). She also has adorable black circles under her delightfully bloodshot eyes.

 

Grad School Barbie is not alone! Order now and you’ll get Barbie’s great friends!

 

GRADUATE ADVISOR KEN, Barbie’s mentor and advisor in her quest for knowledge, higher education and decreased self-esteem.

 

Grad Advisor Ken ™ comes with a supply of red pens and a permanent frown. Press the button to hear Grad Advisor Ken deliver such wisdom to Barbie as “I need an update on your progress,” “I don’t think you’re ready to defend yet”, and “This is nowhere near ready for publication.”

Hey, this is a ripoff.

(#309637)

She looks exactly like Lindsay Wagner Barbie. I'm going to chauvinist hell for that comment, aren't I?

"Hell is truth seen too late." --Thomas Hobbes

I'll miss Lou

(#309624)
Bird Dog's picture

I wish I could've seen him in concert.

"Transparency and the rule of law will be the touchstones of this presidency."

--Barack Obama, January 2009

Me too

(#309634)

I would've loved to see The Velvet Underground do a reunion tour, though I guess John Cale and Reed just couldn't get along enough to get it together. 

 

I've been listening to thgeir records off and on for nearly 20 years. I don't know Reed's solo stuff as well but Transformer is a great album and I also liked New York when I heard it a few years back.

Hey! Hey! HEY!!!!! This is supposed to be good whiskey

(#309630)

we're talking about.  The question isn't if you can afford to drink it, but can you afford not to.

I noticed the small town has an Indian restaurant.  I can think of nobody better than you to judge the quality of such a place.  I propose an all expense paid trip, all expenses paid by you of course, to try the restaurant and get ahold of a snoot full of the uisce beatha for which the place is known.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

Well all know

(#309688)

whisky starts to taste better exponentially as soon as it becomes scarce.

 

I already own a few square inches of Islay from buying Laphroaig bottles.  I'm in.  Maybe we could pool some funds "to each according to his tax bracket"?

Each according to his tax bracket?

(#309729)

Well thank God you didn't say each according to his consumption.

In the medical community, death is known as Chuck Norris Syndrome. 

Nah uh. Laphroaig.

(#309687)

Also an Islay malt, and far more pungent than Talisker.  I have some 18-year-old I don't dare open until I have sufficiently appreciative company.

National Security Leaks For Me But Not For Thee

(#309612)

Bild am Sonntag newspaper quoted US intelligence sources as saying that National Security Agency chief Keith Alexander had briefed Obama on the operation against Merkel in 2010.

"Obama did not halt the operation but rather let it continue," the newspaper quoted a high-ranking NSA official as saying.

 

#rogueagency

After the Boston marathon bombing

(#309611)

Police confined more than a million people to their homes and then shot up the neighborhood where an unarmed suspect was located:

 

... fired many bullets [such that] that multiple adjacent houses were strafed and neighbors two doors down found bullets in multiple locations. Recall that police had time to surround the yard and the boat, and to position themselves in surrounding yards. Determined to fire on the boat, couldn't they put themselves at an angle where a spray of bullets wouldn't threaten people and property in surrounding homes?

That the bomber was caught

(#309617)

with no other loss of civilian life seems to indicate that these complaints are Monday-morning quarterbacking.

meh

(#309660)

the fact that the *entire* city was on total lockdown *except for donut shop employees* tells me all i need to know about how serious the authorities were about public safety vs security theater.

“The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.”
-George Bernard Shaw

Not only that, but the bombers were still heavily armed

(#309620)

(several guns and homemade explosives) and intent on killing as many more people as they could while they were still at large. It seems overblown to suggest BPD overreacted.

"Hell is truth seen too late." --Thomas Hobbes

I've been out the last week

(#309653)

tooling around Capri, Naples, Luzern. Eating, drinking, swimming. That sort of thing.

 

I'm not 100% up on all my Forvm posts and I might have gotten sand in my irony meter, but I assume we're playing some sort of "impersonate hoi poloi state power worshipper" game here?

 

If so, then  I'd just like to add that I think the that as soon as the police got that emergency call from the boat owner confirming the suspect was in the kill zone, they should have gone house to house and just shot anyone they found, because it's the only way to be sure and besides, 911.

When I was ten, a convicted murderer killed a prison guard

(#309655)

and escaped custody. Police believed he was hiding in our town, so they ordered everyone to stay indoors and cordoned/canvassed several neighborhoods. They later caught the guy in a neighboring town, so the cops were wrong. Somehow we got through the whole thing without any jackboots or power worshipping.

"Hell is truth seen too late." --Thomas Hobbes

Those are not jackboots.

(#309656)

They are Tactical Footwear. And 911 changed everything.