ZeroHedge is ridiculous and terrible, a fever swamp of conspiracism, far-right paranoia, and permabearishness. Spreading disinformation about the employment statistics might not be their worst sin, but decent naïfs often fall for this sort of thing, so it’s worth a refutation. The Bureau of Labor Statistics applies a statistical model, known as the birth/death model, to its monthly survey of employers—the source of “the U.S. economy created x thousand jobs last month” headline. The survey covers over 600,000 employing establishments, but misses new business formations at first. The b/d model is an… Read More
Freshly posted to my radio archives: September 10, 2011 Mike Lofgren, former Congressional staffer and author of this spirited farewell to his long-time party, describes the furious insanity of the GOP • Jonathan Kay, author of Among the Truthers, and Kathy Olmsted, UC–Davis prof and author of Real Enemies: Conspiracy Theories and American Democracy, on conspiriacism, esp the 9/11 kind
My god, there is just no end to lunacy. I just learned from contested terrain (which cited my comment that the Wikileaks affair proved the conspiracy theory of history to be wrong) that Wayne Madsen thinks (“CIA, Mossad and Soros behind Wikileaks”) that Julian Assange is a CIA agent in the pay of George Soros, with some help from the Mossad. So all that chat about how the woman who accused Assange of some variety of sexual assault is herself a CIA agent—well, forget that. Because Langley is pulling Assange’s strings. And why would Langley… Read More
I am so sorry that I did not know earlier, when I made a little joke about Wikileaks and 9/11, that Julian Assange had professed himself “annoyed” by the Truthers, causing them to denounce Assange as a tool of the CIA, the Rothschilds, Goldman Sachs, and George Soros. (Why are the evil financiers almost always Jews?) More here: 9/11 skeptics say Julian Assange being manipulated by the CIA.
Looking over this latest batch of WikiLeaks, I’m struck by how few surprises there are, and by how much of importance goes on pretty much in the open. An attentive reader of the news with a decent knowledge of history basically knows most of this stuff already. I don’t mean this in the sense in which the bourgeois press is using it—by using the epithet “old news” to dismiss the significance of the revelations. What they want to dismiss is the truth that the U.S. (like most other nation–states, though they’re not… Read More
No doubt many of you are sick of the whole Pacifica mess, but this is really important: if these layoffs go down, it’s gonna be 9/11 and chemtrails. From the excellent historian of Pacifica, Matthew Lasar: How the KPFA Morning Show almost killed me (and why I want it to live) | Radio Survivor.
Truther follow-up Before commenting on the economic news, a brief follow-up to last week’s comments about the 9/11 Truthers. It provoked, if not a flood, more than a trickle of emails and bloggy complaints, about evenly divided between the patronizing and the hostile. Perhaps my favorite was an email from someone signing him or herself a variant on Sky, who counseled me to learn patience, and disclosing that 9/11 is a spiritual matter. Nothing makes me want to scream more than being told to be patient; I hate it, for example, when… Read More
March on Wall Street The WBAI studios are on Wall Street, of all places, so I was able to catch a glimpse of the anti-bank demonstration sponsored by the AFL-CIO and a coalition of community groups organized by National People’s Action (Showdown in America). It’s inspiring, but I’m afraid there’s just not the level of popular mobilization necessary to overcome the lobbying power of big finance. The unions are blowing off some steam today, but tomorrow they’ll go back to writing big checks to Democratic politicians and apologizing for their failings. And,… Read More