…us foreign policy in the farce lane…

…let’s try that again. the word is coo as in peace dove, not coup as in imperial policy…

Over at firedoglake Wendy Davis does the good deed under the witty, personality-describing header, In First Visit to the Vatican, Obama Finds Himself Moved

From her article, we have an excerpt of the exceptional stenography of US NPR (National Public Radio) and its Sylvia Poggoli. Ms Poggoli even goes so far as study the body language to conclude, what else, good chemistry between the Pope and the US President. But she fails to mention if either looked into the other’s eyes to see if there was a soul – one had boasted that he was good at killing, even though the killing was done by some willing subordinate tasked to do so. Some nice stuff,

POGGIOLI: President Obama said the theme that stitched their conversation together was the importance of empathy in politics as well as in life.

OBAMA: That that’s critical. It’s the lack of empathy that makes it very easy for us to plunge into wars. It’s the lack of empathy that allows us to ignore the homeless on the streets.

The largest bulk of the time was discussing two central concerns of his. One is the issues of the poor, the marginalized, those without opportunity and growing inequality.

 [bold added for emphasis] Read the rest of this entry »


…a sunday evening, another dance…

…having again survived the Furies, and enriched by the experience, we are encouraged, soothingly, into another week,


…capitalism in literature and culture…

Thomas Piketty’s, Capitalism in the Twenty-first Century, continues to command attention.

For some entertaining reading, we have Tim Fernholz over at quartz who shows how Piketty uses literature and popular culture to explore and analyse inequality. Everything wrong with capitalism, as explained by Balzac, “House” and “The Aristocats”

Of course, especially relevant are those classic literary works such as Victor Hugo’s, Les Misérables. Or Charles Dickens’, Oliver Twist.

At the policy level in the US and the UK, the expectation is that action to reduce inequality will be as concerted as it presently is, lively banter in the media or at the social functions of the 1%. And as for the rapid progress made in those Latin countries where inequality has been historically high? Too uncomfortable for the corporate MSM to report on.


…the brew done, a lively musical companion…

…and an observation of Voltaire, Laissez lire, et laissez danser; ces deux amusements ne feront jamais de mal au monde. And here, danser it is,

Music, an elixir of life. And love…

 

 

 

 

 


…obama, the cretan…

…yes, the Cretan…

Epimenides, the Cretan, is famously quoted as saying, ‘All Cretans are liars.’ Then along came President Obama.

Clearly not to be outdone, the US President sallies forth with some nuggets of which only he is capable. For his corporation-designed healthcare programme, he had assured citizens that they could keep their existing plans on signing up for the eponymous ObamaCare – which turned out to be not quite true. Then he would stoutly deny having ever said what he did say, and did say several times. A is true, not A is true.

Then there is that small matter of spying on US citizens, where there would a robust denial – until Edward Snowden would show otherwise; and then would follow a statement of plans to address the very spying that was never taking place? A is true, not A is true. Well, OK. Read the rest of this entry »


…the 1%, panis et circunsenses…

Chris Dillow, over at the pieria blog, has a timely post, THE POWER OF THE 1%

Well worth the reading. [Simon (Wren-Lewis) is a professor of economics at Oxford University and has the blog, mainly macro.]

Relatedly and especially apt is the observation of the late Tony Benn (RiP) posted over at informed consent,

Read the rest of this entry »


…a sunday evening, an inspiration for tomorrow…

…as we stay with Yo-Yo Ma…