Friday, July 21, 2017

Lord Keynes — The 10,000 Year Explosion, Chapter 2: A Summary

Chapter 2 of Gregory Cochran and Henry Harpending’s The 10,000 Year Explosion: How Civilization Accelerated Human Evolution(2009) is called “The Neanderthal Within,” and examines the possibility that early humans outside of Africa interbred with Neanderthals, and how this affected human evolution....
Social Democracy For The 21St Century: A Post Keynesian Perspective
The 10,000 Year Explosion, Chapter 2: A Summary
Lord Keynes

Shashi Reddy — A computer was asked to predict which start-ups would be successful. The results were astonishing.

Clickbait title, but an interesting article anyway.
In 2009, Ira Sager of Businessweek magazine set a challenge for Quid AI's CEO Bob Goodson: programme a computer to pick 50 unheard of companies that are set to rock the world.
The domain of picking “start-up winners” was - and largely still is - dominated by a belief held by the venture capital (VC) industry that machines do not play a role in the identification of winners. Ironically, the VC world, having fuelled the creation of computing, is one of the last areas of business to introduce computing to decision-making. 
Nearly eight years later, the magazine revisited the list to see how “Goodson plus the machine” had performed. The results surprised even Goodson: Evernote, Spotify, Etsy, Zynga, Palantir, Cloudera, OPOWER – the list goes on. The list featured not only names widely known to the public and leaders of industries, but also high performers such as Ibibo, which had eight employees in 2009 when selected and now has $2 billion annual sales as the top hotel booking site in India. Twenty percent of the companies chosen had reached billion-dollar valuations.
To contextualize these results, Bloomberg Businessweek turned to one of the leading “fund of funds” in the US, which has been investing in VC funds since the 1980s and has one of the richest data sets available on actual company performance and for benchmarking VC portfolio performance.
The fund of funds was not named for compliance reasons, but its research showed that, had the 50 companies been a VC portfolio, it would have been the second-best-performing fund of all time. Only one fund has ever chosen better, which did most of its investments in the late 1990s and rode the dotcom bubble successfully. Of course, in this hypothetical portfolio, one could choose any company, whereas VCs often need to compete to invest.
Recently, Bloomberg asked Goodson to repeat the feat. Here, we’ll take an in-depth look at the methodology behind the new list, and also broader trends set to flourish in the market....
World Economic Forum
A computer was asked to predict which start-ups would be successful. The results were astonishing.
Shashi Reddy | Chief of Staff, Quid

Scaramucci: "No, the national debt does not make the United States insolvent"


TIME ran a piece this week by economist Jim Grant titled “Make America Solvent Again.” The cover exclaimed that in order to pay off our $13.9 trillion national debt, every American needs to chip in $42,998.12. The alarmist headline likely accomplished its goal of selling magazines in grocery store checkout lines, but the underlying premise of the article is inane. 
Let’s start with the definition of insolvency. An entity is insolvent when debts exceed assets. First off, the U.S. government owns hundreds of trillions worth of assets. The Institute for Energy Research (IER) estimated in 2013 that fossil fuel-related assets owned by the federal government are worth more than $150 trillion, more than ten times the national debt. Add in things like land, real estate and military equipment, and the government’s assets are likely well in excess of $200 trillion. In addition, current U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) is around $18 trillion, on which the government has taxation authority.

A bit weak (I detect a slight foul odor of libertarianism present...) but not too shabby.  Scaramucci seems unawares of the US federal government's use of Modified Accrual accounting which does not allow Accrual Accounting methods to be used on the left hand side of the accounting, so under present accounting methods, they can't accrue the value of future taxation or hypothetical asset sales...

So unless they attack the Federal government's inane accounting methodology, the inane assertions about Federal government "debt!" will continue...

David F. Ruccio — Globalization—how did they get it so wrong?

There is perhaps no more cherished an idea within mainstream economics than that everyone benefits from free trade and, more generally, globalization. They represent the solution to the problem of scarcity for the world as a whole, much as free markets are celebrated as the best way of allocating scarce resources within nations. And any exceptions to free markets, whether national or international, need to be criticized and opposed at every turn.
That celebration of capitalist globalization, as Nikil Saval explains, has been the common sense that mainstream economists, both liberal and conservative, have adhered to and disseminated, in their research, teaching, and policy advice, for many decades.
Today, of course, that common sense has been challenged—during the Second Great Depression, in the Brexit vote, during the course of the electoral campaigns of Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump—and economic elites, establishment politicians, and mainstream economists have been quick to issue dire warnings about the perils of disrupting the forces of globalization.
I have my own criticisms of Saval’s discussion of the rise and fall of the idea of globalization, especially his complete overlooking of the long tradition of globalization critics, especially on the Left, who have emphasized the dirty, violent, unequalizing underside of colonialism, neocolonialism, and imperialism.
However, as a survey of the role of globalization within mainstream economics, Saval’s essay is well worth a careful read....
Occasional Links & Commentary
Globalization—how did they get it so wrong?
David F. Ruccio | Professor of Economics, University of Notre Dame

Why Brilliant Girls Tend to Favor Non-STEM Careers

And it is not just a male/female thing...

Or do girls with the skill sets that would give them entrance to STEM fields prefer fields that involve working with people over fields that involve working with things?

and "skill sets" are one thing (maybe "aptitude" better here) but then you still have to rigorously TRAIN to get good at something... you need to go hard and get reps...

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Peter Cooper — Short & Simple 9 – Spending Determines Income

We understand that, as a rule, total spending must equal total income (this was explained in part 4 of the series). But this raises a question. Is it spending that determines income or, instead, income that determines spending?
Short & Simple 9 – Spending Determines Income
Peter Cooper

Nauman Sadiq — The US takes Rebranded Al-Nusra Front off Terror Watch-lists

Shell games in the snake pit.
According to a recent report by CBC Canada, al-Qaeda’s affiliate in Syria, which was formerly known as al-Nusra Front and then Jabhat Fateh al-Sham (JFS) since July 2016, has been removed from the terror watch-lists of the US and Canada after it merged with fighters from Zenki Brigade and hardline jihadists from Ahrar al-Sham and rebranded itself as Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS) in January this year.… 
Thus, this rebranding exercise has been going on for quite some time. Al-Julani announced the split from al-Qaeda in a video statement last year. But the persistent efforts of al-Julani’s Gulf-based patrons have borne fruit only in January this year, when al-Nusra Front once again rebranded itself from Jabhat Fateh al-Sham (JFS) to Hayat Tahrir al-Sham (HTS), which also includes “moderate” jihadists from Zenki Brigade, Ahrar al-Sham and several other militant groups, and thus, the US State Department has finally given a clean chit to the jihadist conglomerate that goes by the name of Tahrir al-Sham to pursue its ambitions of toppling the Assad regime in Syria.

Darius Shahtahmasebi — We Finally Know Who Is Really Behind the Qatar Crisis

Anti-Media has covered some of the geopolitical undertones of this crisis (see here and here), but the UAE’s specific role in this crisis is worth highlighting on its own here. While the UAE is aligned with these other GCC nations in its distaste for Iran and its desire to bring Qatar to its knees, it transpires that the UAE has a hidden agenda of its own.
Qatar hosts the American military’s largest base in the region, al-Udeid, which currently houses over 10,000 American personnel. This is important because the UAE wants this base removed from Qatar and wants to host the American military themselves.
As usual, "follow the money."

Lord Keynes — The 10,000 Year Explosion, Chapter 1: A Summary

Gregory Cochran and Henry Harpending’s The 10,000 Year Explosion: How Civilization Accelerated Human Evolution (2009) is a truly extraordinary book that every person on the Left should read. In essence, Cochran and Harpending challenge the notion that human evolution stopped around 50,000 years ago....
Social Democracy For The 21St Century: A Post Keynesian Perspective
The 10,000 Year Explosion, Chapter 1: A Summary
Lord Keynes

Alastair Crooke — A Syrian Cordon Sanitaire: Is Israel huffing & puffing, or is it serious ?

Alastair Crooke also writing at SST now.

Sic Semper Tyrannis
A Syrian Cordon Sanitaire: Is Israel huffing & puffing, or is it serious?
Alastair CrookeSee also

Did Trump Get it Right by Accident?
Publius Tacitus

Caleb Maupin — Oil, Qatar, China & The Global Conflict

Backgrounder on conditions in geopolitics and geostrategy. It's much broader than oil, Qatar and China as the title suggests.

It's difficult to see how this unfolding dynamic doesn’t lead to war as competing political systems and economic interests continue on a collision course.

There is no way to disentangle social structures, political systems and economic interests of societies. They are different facets of the same structure.

Oil, Qatar, China & The Global Conflict
Caleb Maupin

Grete Mauthner — America’s Propaganda Central is Going to Cash in Big

A bipartisan initiative led by senators Rob Portman and Chris Murphy has authorized 160 million dollars over two years to fight state actors through a little-known agency office housed at the State Department called the Global Engagement Center....
America’s state propaganda agency Broadcasting Board of Governors (BBG) released a report about the range of its last year’s activities.…
The report states that in 2016 the agency would cooperate with all sorts of investigators, directors and journalists for them to promote US foreign policy and national security interests “through independent journalism”.
The target audience of such instances of “independent journalism” can be found in Russia, across the entire post-Soviet space, China, Iran, Cuba, along with a number of other regions. The BBG would broadcast its propaganda manifests in national languages of the countries it has been operating in, while adding programs in the languages of national minorities living in the above mentioned regions. By the end of 2016, the total number of employees of BBG reached 2,940.
In mid-June, the [US State Department's] Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor would release a tender that would demand the contenders to present the bureau with considerable capabilities for “independent and objective media coverage” across the Baltic States, in order to promote the “values of democracy and human rights” and wage information wars. Under the conditions of the tender, it is emphasized that the media should create competitive modern content on actively developing digital platforms, while targeting the Russian-speaking audience in those states. The tender will provide the agency that would get an upper hand with a sum ranging from 1.5 million to 3 million dollars, however it would be forced to closely coordinate its activities with US embassies in the Baltic countries. In addition, the agency that is to win the grant should get registered with the NSPA – NATO Support and Procurement Agency.
Last month it has also become known that the Broadcasting Board of Governors remains in control of such propaganda stations as Radio Liberty and Voice of America demanded the US Congress to allocate a total of 22 million dollars on its operations in spite of the fact that public interest towards above mentioned stations has been declining due to all sorts of unfounded public statements that they have been making. In total the Board has demanded US president to allocate over 685 million dollars on its operations for the year 2018. It’s curious that Washington is spending almost as much money on spreading propaganda in Russia as it spends on similar activities in China....
Simultaneously, US propagandist rail against Chinese government sponsored Confucian Institutes in US universities and Russian government sponsored RT operating in the English-speaking world.

Let's get some perspective here. The US is way out front in funding and carrying on information war and stratcomm than it's putative "adversaries."

America’s Propaganda Central is Going to Cash in Big
Grete Mauthner

Alastair Crooke — How Trump Defines the Future

President Trump has defined the future as a battle between old-style nationalism and neoliberal globalism, a challenge that the West’s elites mock at their own peril, as ex-British diplomat Alastair Crooke describes.
As the world globalizes, there is a dialectic going on over which factors should predominate — international v. national, sovereign v. subject, unipolar v. multipolar, liberal v. traditional, capitalism v. democracy, etc.

Alstaire Crooke observes that this is no longer largely a difference between power blocs — East and West, or North and South — but rather involves fierce in-house political disputes among contending factions and vying political constituencies within countries.

The outcome is uncertain and it is already involving considerable conflict domestically and internationally. 

Presently, the world is realigning geopolitically and geostrategically as countries rethink their future and lay track for a path to it. As a result the world is becoming more precarious.

Consortium News
How Trump Defines the Future
Alastair Crooke | founder and director of the Conflicts Forum, and former British diplomat and senior figure in British intelligence and in European Union diplomacy

Vladimir Popov and Jomo Kwame Sundaram — Early Death in Russia

Sociological effects of economic change. Economic contraction results in social dysfunction that manifests negatively in individual lives.
The transition to market economy and democracy in the Russian Federation in the early 1990s dramatically increased mortality and shortened life expectancy. The steep upsurge in mortality and the decline in life expectancy in Russia are the largest ever recorded anywhere in peacetime in the absence of catastrophes such as war, plague or famine.
During 1987-1994, the Russian mortality rate increased by 60%, from 1.0% to 1.6%, while life expectancy went down from 70 to 64 years. Although life expectancy declined from 1987, when Mikhail Gorbachev was still in charge, its fall was sharpest during 1991-1994, i.e., during Boris Yeltsin’s early years.
In fact, mortality increased to levels never observed during the 1950s to the 1980s, i.e., for at least four decades. Even in the last years of Stalin’s rule (1950-1953), mortality rates were nearly half what they were in the first half of the 1990s.
Economic output fell by 45% during 1989-1998, while negative social indicators, such as the crime rate, murder rate, suicide rate and income inequalities, rose sharply as well, but even these alone cannot adequately explain the unprecedented mortality spike.
Yet, the Yeltsin period is represented as the "golden years" of Russia in the US, and the US elite is doing its best to return "the good old days" to Russia when "cowboy capitalism" ruled under the tutelage of the Harvard boyz, whose guiding principle was, "Let the market sort it out."

Vladimir Putin reversed the precipitous slide into system collapse and now the US elite thinks that his astronomical approval rating is the result of his control of Russian media, which he is running as a propaganda machine like Pravada was for the UUSR elite.
Meanwhile, the same syndrome begins to grip the US.
Early Death in Russia
Vladimir Popov and Jomo Kwame Sundaram

Tyler Cowen — The economics of the Protestant Reformation

Here is the abstract of a new paper by Davide Cantoni, Jeremiah Dittmar, and Noam Yuchtman:
Important economic history and history of economics for the development of the socio-economic system that subsequently emerged in the West as economic liberalism and "capitalism."

Good stuff in the comments, too.

Marginal Revolution
The economics of the Protestant Reformation
Tyler Cowen | Holbert C. Harris Chair of Economics at George Mason University and serves as chairman and general director of the Mercatus Center

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Jason Smith — What mathematical theory is for

Cuts to the chase on the use of math in science, including economics.

Information Transfer Economics
What mathematical theory is for
Jason Smith

Nice Monday

Bullish DTS from Monday.  $15B net withdrawals including $4B of interest and then the TGA gained (reserve drain) $30B from deposits; removing some regulated dud assets from depository institutions.

TGA now back up over $200B again here still under the debt ceiling.

Zaid Jilani — Trumpcare Is Dead. “Single Payer Is the Only Real Answer,” Says Medicare Architect.

Many health care activists are now pushing to adopt what is called a “single payer” health care system, where one public health insurance program would cover everyone. The U.S. currently has one federal program like that: Medicare. Expanding it polls very well.
One of the activists pushing for such an expansion is Max Fine, someone who is intimately familiar with the program — because he helped create it. Fine is the last surviving member of President Kennedy’s Medicare Task Force, and he was also President Johnson’s designated debunker against the health insurance industry.
Fine, now 91, wrote to The Intercept recently to explain that Medicare was never intended to cover only the elderly population, and that expanding it to everyone was a goal that its architects long campaigned for....
Could the GOP pick up on this?
After the death of the Senate healthcare bill yesterday, The Intercept reached out to Fine for comment about where Congress should go next. “Single payer is the only real answer and some day I believe the Republicans will leap ahead of the Democrats and lead in its enactment,” he speculated, “just as did Bismarck in Germany and David Lloyd George and Churchill in the UK.”
No way the presently configured GOP could ever pass anything like this.

Trump Jr. Took a Meeting, Bill Clinton Took $500K — Aaron Mate interviews Michael Sainato

According to reports, Special Counsel Robert Mueller's probe now includes the recently disclosed meeting between Donald Trump Jr. and a Russian lawyer. The music publicist who arranged the meeting told Trump Jr. the lawyer had compromising information on Hillary Clinton on behalf of the Russian government, but the lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, says she was only trying to lobby against the Magnitsky Act, which imposed sanctions on Russian officials. If that's true, then there's another interesting Clinton tie here. Hillary Clinton also opposed the sanctions when she was Secretary of State, and that only came after her husband, Bill Clinton, received $500,000 for a speech at a Russian investment conference in Moscow. According to leaked emails, Hillary Clinton's 2016 campaign killed a Bloomberg story that tried to link Hillary Clinton's stance to her husband's paid gig, which means Donald Trump might not be the only 2016 candidate with a conflict of interest related to Russia. 
Let's get some perspective here.

Aaron Mate interviews Michael Sainato

See also
It's official: The self-appointed foreign collusion police have forgiven themselves for colluding with a foreign government. It was all in the past. To quote Barack Obama after we "tortured some folks": Forward!
The familiar, "It's only bad when others do it," syndrome. Seems to be rampant in the American elite.

Russia Insider
High-Ranking Democrat Weighs in on DNC Collusion With Foreign Government: "No Biggie"
Michael Hering

Oleg Komlik — Pierre Bourdieu: Economism is a form of ethnocentrism

Economic liberalism, typified by "economism," is not only an ideology based on restrictive assumptions that are normative and prescriptive in addition to positive. It is also ethnocentric, being based on Western culturally dominant concepts and values, and in particular Anglo-American concepts and values that have been dominant post-WWII, and which economic liberals have insisted upon universalizing as "natural."

Economic Sociology and Political Economy
Pierre Bourdieu: Economism is a form of ethnocentrism
Oleg Komlik | founder and editor-in-chief of the ES/PE, Chairman of the Junior Sociologists Network at the International Sociological Association, a PhD Candidate in Economic Sociology in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at Ben-Gurion University, and a Lecturer in the School of Behavioral Sciences at the College of Management Academic Studie

see also

Fast Company
Are You Ready To Consider That Capitalism Is The Real Problem?
Jason Hickel And Martin Kirk

Bill Mitchell — Austerity will not work for France right now

It didn’t take long from Emmanuel Macron to get started on his neo-liberal agenda. That should be no surprise, given he championed the insidious El Khomri Law when he was Minister of Economy and Finance in the second Manuel Valls Cabinet. In a major speech in Paris on Monday (July 17, 2017), Macron, demanded that local governments in France slash spending by 13 billion euros by 2022 as part of an effort to cut the French fiscal deficit. Why they would want to be cutting the fiscal deficit with growth creeping along and the unemployment rate stuck close to 10 per cent, among other problems facing the French nation is another matter. Clearly, they are under pressure from the Excessive Deficit Mechanism given that the overal fiscal deficit remains around 3.5 per cent (above the 3 per cent threshold) and doesn’t look like coming down any time soon. And it is clear that Brussels will not turn a blind eye to France, as it did for Spain when it allowed the deficit to rise to support growth as part of the strategy to get the conservatives re-elected. The elites in the Eurozone have their boy in power in France so no further political support is required. But austerity will not work for France right now.
Look for more political unrest in France.

Bill Mitchell – billy blog
Austerity will not work for France right now
Bill Mitchell | Professor in Economics and Director of the Centre of Full Employment and Equity (CofFEE), at University of Newcastle, NSW, Australia

See also
Backlash against painful budget cuts coming from both sides as military, teachers, local authorities push back..
A backlash against budget cuts was to be expected in France, but for the first shots to be fired from the military is unusual, and a sign that Macron should be prepared to be hit from both ends of the political spectrum.
Honeymoon over?

Asia Times
Revolt against Macron begins, chief of French armed forces resigns
Chris Scott

Brian Romanchuk — Presentation At MMT Conference

I will be doing a presentation at the First International Conference of Modern Monetary Theory in Kansas City in September 2017 (conference dates are September 21-24, website: I will be presenting an introduction to my Python stock-flow consistent models package -- sfc_models. This article is a rough draft of what I think the slides will look like.
Bond Economics
Presentation At MMT Conference
Brian Romanchuk

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Erica Klarreich — In Game Theory, No Clear Path to Equilibrium

Game theory in math and economics.

Quanta Magazine
In Game Theory, No Clear Path to Equilibrium
Erica Klarreich

Colin Marshall — Hunter S. Thompson Chillingly Predicts the Future, Telling Studs Terkel About the Coming Revenge of the Economically & Technologically “Obsolete” (1967)

I recall reading Hell's Angels: The Strange and Terrible Saga of the Outlaw Motorcycle Gangs back then. It was a good read, as was Tom Wolfe's The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test. This was new in journalism and investigative reporting. It took a lot of nerve."To see the Hell’s Angels as caretakers of the old 'individualist' tradition 'that made this country great' is only a painless way to get around seeing them for what they really are," Thompson writes in that book, calling them "the first wave of a future that nothing in our history has prepared us to cope with. The Angels are prototypes. Their lack of education has not only rendered them completely useless in a highly technical economy, but it has also given them the leisure to cultivate a powerful resentment... and to translate it into a destructive cult which the mass media insists on portraying as a sort of isolated oddity" destined for extinction.
Studs Terkel, after reading that passage out loud in a 1967 interview with Thompson, calls it "the key" to the entire book. "Here we have technology, we have the computer, we have labor-saving devices," he says to Thompson, but we also "have the need for more and more college education for almost any kind of job, and we have this tremendous mass of young who find themselves obsolete." But Thompson replies that the real consequences have only started to manifest: "The people who are being left out and put behind won't be obvious for years. Christ only knows what'll happen in, say, 1985 — a million Hell's Angels. They won't be wearing the colors; they'll be people who are just looking for vengeance because they've been left behind."
What we are seeing in the US that the upper 20% of workers are doing well and have bright prospects, while the other 80% are stuck where they are, are stagnating in place, or are doing worse. Moreover, employment for the lower 80% is becoming more precarious. This is resulting in social dysfunction and political reaction.

Edward Harrison — Some thoughts on full employment and this asset-based economic recovery

My answer is that monetary policy is the only game in town. In fact, if you look at the US compared to the rest of the G-7, fiscal policy has been tighter in the US than in any other country. It’s been even tighter than Spain, which has been forced to cut under the EU’s excessive deficit procedure.
Credit Writedowns
Some thoughts on full employment and this asset-based economic recovery
Edward Harrison
This is going to be a quick follow-on to the last post on monetary policy as the only game in town. I feel like the obvious question that post doesn’t answer is this one: what other policy tools should we use? And I want to tee up that question with this post.

Asia Unhedged — Three misconceptions in the US about China’s economy

Former chairman of Morgan Stanley Asia talked to CNBC about the three main misconceptions he sees being thrown around about China’s economy:
  1. “Number one, they have pushed their system to the point of Japanese style implosion, with all the debt, and I think that is wrong.
  2. And, number two, that they have a centrally planned economic structure, every bit of which is driven by the government, and I think that’s wrong. I think that the private economy is actually thriving.
  3. And, number three, the west does not believe that China innovates. It continues to believe that China is aggressive at stealing intellectual property, and yet, the wave of innovation that is evident in their private-based economy, anything from e-commerce to medical sciences, is really quite spectacular right now. […]
The Chinese have defied a lot of naysaying for close to 40 years, and I think that will continue to be the case. All the talk about a crash landing, a slowdown, a debt-induced Japanese-like end game, those fears are largely overblown. […]
Asia Times
Three misconceptions in the US about China’s economy
Asia Unhedged

Nick Johnson — Production and realization of surplus value – Marxists, Keynesians and others

Many Marxists follow the man himself by emphasising that capitalism is a profit-driven system. By contrast, Keynesians, particularly the more radical post-Keynesians, see the system as demand-driven and therefore responsive to a policy of demand-expansion during a slowdown or recession.…

In sum then, I find the above quote from Marx on the contradiction between the production and realization of surplus value and profit very helpful. It offers tremendous insight into the dynamics of capitalism, which has given rise to periods of growth and crisis throughout its history. 
If Marx is right, different kinds of crisis may require different solutions: if the production of surplus value and profitability is insufficient, then some kind of restructuring is required; if its realization is weak due to inadequate demand, then policies which boost investment or consumption may be appropriate.
The Political Economy of Development

Cyrus Farivar — Security experts from Google, Facebook, Crowdstrike want to save US elections. "Defending Digital Democracy" will "generate innovative ideas" to safeguard democracy.

Get ready for  de facto censorship? The tell? "Safeguarding democracy."
A new group at Harvard University staffed by the former campaign managers of the Hillary Clinton and Mitt Romney campaigns, along with other top security experts, have banded together to help mitigate various types of online attacks that threaten American democracy.
The initiative, dubbed "Defending Digital Democracy," will be run by former chief of staff for the secretary of defense, Eric Rosenbach.
"Americans across the political spectrum agree that political contests should be decided by the power of ideas, not the skill of foreign hackers," Rosenbach said in a Tuesday statement. "Cyber deterrence starts with strong cyber defense—and this project brings together key partners in politics, national security, and technology to generate innovative ideas to safeguard our key democratic institutions."
Of course these people have no agenda. Heh heh.

Meanwhile the felony leaks from anonymous government sources continue, and there seems to be nothing being done about uncovering the leakers. Thank heaven it's not disrupting democracy to mount a soft coup against a sitting president. Actually, the people involved profess to be "safeguarding democracy" from the American electorate "since it made a poor choice" that the "grownups" need to fix.

Tim Duy — This Expansion Will End in a Fizzle, Not a Bang

The Fed is growing increasingly concerned that this expansion will end like the last two, with a collapse in asset prices that brings down the economy. That concern will lead the central bank down the path of excessive tightening. Worse, that logic misses a key point. In both of the last two cycles, there was a sizable imbalance in the economy that extended beyond financial assets themselves. So far, the current environment lacks such an imbalance. That suggests the expansion ends with more of a fizzle than a bang....
The central point is this: High asset prices alone do not imply that a fall in those prices will bring the economy down. Those asset prices need to be linked in a very tangible way to a fairly significant and widespread imbalance in the economy for their decline to bring about a broader economy collapse....
Bloomberg View — Opinion
This Expansion Will End in a Fizzle, Not a Bang
Tim Duy | Director of Undergraduate Studies of the Department of Economics at the University of Oregon, the Director of the Oregon Economic Forum, and blogger at Tim Duy's Fed Watch

John Helmer — The Improper Association (Maybe Crime) of Victor Pinchuk With Hillary, Bill and Chelsea Clinton, Covered Up by the Us Media, Us Department of Justice, and the International Monetary Fund

Never in the field of American conflict with Russia has so much wool pulled over the eyes been owed to so few sheep. That was during the losing presidential campaign of Hillary Clinton. Now, in the investigations of President Donald Trump and his family, it’s a case of so many sheep producing so little wool.
The case of the $13 million paid to the Clinton family by the Ukrainian oligarch Victor Pinchuk, in exchange for personal favours and escalation of the war against Russia, was reported in detail throughout 2014. Click to read the opener, and more....
Dances with Bears
The Improper Association (Maybe Crime) of Victor Pinchuk With Hillary, Bill and Chelsea Clinton, Covered Up by the Us Media, Us Department of Justice, and the International Monetary Fund
John Helmer