Links & Commentary 2/18

U.S. Fate 2016
Sanders’ Economic Plan Torn Apart By Former Clinton, Obama Economists [HuffPo]
They say a new analysis of the plan makes “claims that cannot be supported by the economic evidence.” Well they would say that, wouldn’t they? Two of them worked under the Clinton administration. But here’s all you need to know:

The George Wallace of 2016 [Roll Call]
Veteran journalist Walter Shapiro, who has covered the past nine presidential elections, likens a particular Republican candidate to Wallace, just not as polite. Guess which one?

What about Bloomberg?
Michael Bloomberg Experts Discuss Why He’d Be an Awful Candidate [Rolling Stone]
“He is a product of Wall Street in a year in which Wall Street is very unpopular,” says Bloomberg biographer. Yeah, so what about him?

Michael Bloomberg’s Road Map to the White House [Roll Call]
Political analyst Stu Rothenberg thinks the nomination of Sanders would be a “best case” scenario for Bloomberg. The Beltway insiders have made similar comments about Biden. They are all assuming that Sanders is the “anti-Hillary” candidate, and they just need to find an alternative that is more acceptable to the mainstream. They are assuming incorrectly. Like the Clintons, they just don’t get it. But it’s a moot point. According to Rothenberg, it would be virtually impossible for Bloomberg to gain enough electoral votes to win in the general election.

Meanwhile, Nate Silver mapped out a route for Bernie Sanders. Actually, it’s not a map but a gigantic chart. [FiveThirtyEight]

Marco Rubio Can’t Bring Himself to Say Trump’s Name
If he can’t say Trump’s name, how can voters expect him to be tough on the Knights who say Ni?

Ceres
The Slow Violence of Climate Change [Jacobin]
The Paris agreement doesn’t just represent a total failure to take immediate steps to curb greenhouse emissions, writes Sara Nelson. Its very process perpetrates what Rob Nixon calls the “slow violence” of climate change. Nixon uses this term to describe how contemporary imperialism transfers its toxic byproducts to peoples and ecosystems at the peripheries of the global economy, challenging us to recognize imperial violence in the cumulative, attritional, and mundane forms of death and disease that do not resolve into moments of spectacular destruction. The spectacle of international climate negotiations shows that climate justice won’t come through existing institutions. Truth. Nelson is a University of Minnesota graduate student researching the ecosystems service economy.

Iowa Utilities Board in Final Deliberations on Construction of Bakken Oil Pipeline [Think Progress]
The Iowa Utilities Board could decide as early as this week whether to allow construction of the Bakken oil pipeline to move forward. The planned route stretches 1,168 miles across four states, three of which have approved permit applications for the project. The Iowa board began hearings more than two months ago and has a meeting scheduled for Friday (Feb. 19) to hear final arguments. Within Iowa, the pipeline route crosses 1,300 parcels in 18 counties, and some landowners, particularly farmers, are putting up a fight. Foreseeing that possibility, the Texas company building the project early on asked for eminent domain. Campaigning in Iowa ahead of the caucuses, Bernie Sanders denounced the project and released an ad featuring Patti Edwardson and George Naylor of Churdan, which lies directly in the path of the many-headed hydra. Didn’t hear a peep out of Hillary.


New World Pecking Order
Michael Hudson Discusses the New Global Financial Cold War [Naked Capitalism]
NC provides a transcript of a Guns + Butter radio interview with Michael Hudson, research associate at the Levy Economics Institute of Bard College and prolific author. His most recent book is Killing the Host: How Financial Parasites and Debt Bondage Destroy the Global Economy. Asked about the TPP (Trans-Pacific Partnership) trade agreement, Hudson replied, “I could give a glib answer and say the aim is to reduce the population by 50%, to starve people, abolish pensions and spread poverty. That actually is the effect. … I think you could say that at the broadest level, the idea is to roll back the Enlightenment and restore feudalism. That may sound like an extreme statement, but people don’t realize how radical the TPP’s investment agreements are.”

The IMF Changes its Rules to Isolate China and Russia [Michael Hudson]
This article is cited in the above transcript, but it’s interesting reading on its own. This is the kind of stuff that escapes notice even for those taking the red pill.

Neo-Feudalism
Nestle is Pumping Millions of Gallons from the Great Lakes for Free While Flint Pays for Poison [U.S. Uncut]
Neptune in Pisces seems self-explanatory, but have I mentioned that Saturn rules lead?