It’s been a somewhat eventful week here, and despite the holiday on Wednesday, it seemed like it was ten days. On the bright side, I had a personal triumph this week, breaking an inventive drought and filing a patent application for my first real invention in several years. I got to mock JW for his amateurish attempts at posting Links. Taking advantage of a free trial, we binge-watched Season 4 of our favorite TV show, Silicon Valley. My most senior researcher retired, leaving me with all of his work on top of mine. I got a new computer. I wrote a long introduction to Links with a bunch of shit no-one cares about.

And speaking of links, here we go.

 

The nightmare may be upon us. WE MAY ACTUALLY TAKE OUR ARMY OUT OF EUROPE. This is, of course, unthinkable, letting sovereign nations fend for themselves instead of sucking off the American taxpayers’ teat to fund their own welfare states.

After 18 months of Donald Trump’s “America First” presidency, European leaders meeting with him next week fear the United States may change its traditional course and begin to bring American troops home from the continent.

OK, we’re probably not going to do that, this is more Trump brain-lint, but fuck, it’s a nice thought. It is amusing to see the “Trump-Is-Hitler” crowd now worrying that Hitler is going to remove his armed forces from their soil…

 

Now this is stunning. Apparently, the head of the executive branch actually CAN appoint appointed officials, even if his name isn’t “Obama.” There’s no exception for “hobby horse agencies created by Liz Warren.”

Mulvaney’s appointment set up a partisan showdown over who was the CFPB’s rightful acting director. Democrats and liberal groups previously aligned with CFPB backed English and refused to recognize Mulvaney’s legitimacy. Republicans and financial services industry advocates backed Trump’s authority to supercede (sic) the CFPB’s line of succession.

As usual, neither Team backs “get rid of the fucking thing entirely.”

 

The main highway through Chicago is being shut down this morning by a hustler-authoritarian “Father” Michael Pfleger. In theory, this is to bring attention to the fact that Chicago has a lot of shootings, because before Pfleger came along to teach us, no one had any idea. Oh, also, to hustle money. And as the photos in the articles indicate, Pfleger learned from the best, noted antisemite attention and money-whore “Reverend” Jesse Jackson.

Pfleger said his decision to shut down the Dan Ryan [Expressway] was inspired not only to make a statement about stopping violence, but also by a variety of movements including those pushing for immigration reform and the teacher’s union in Chicago.

Gee, the union thugs involved in trying to extort more money. >This< is my shocked face. Now it would be wrong of me to think that it would be just irony if someone trapped in the massive traffic jam got pissed off and shot Pfleger. Yes indeed, that would be terribly wrong and I absolutely wouldn’t be laughing my ass off about it. Nossir. What’s amazing on the surface is that the protest is backed by the Chicago mayor and police chief. But not really so amazing- for those of you unfamiliar with Chicago history, the city has no jurisdiction over the expressways because it was taken away by the courts due to a legacy of corruption and bribery by the city cops. So it’s the state cops’ worry. HAH-hah!

 

Every once in a while, I ask myself, “Can CNN get any more deranged?” Their response to me this time is, “Here, hold mah beer.” This is the kitchen sink of stupid.

…before a cheering crowd in Montana he poked at Elizabeth Warren for claiming to have Native American ancestry, disparagingly saying that he would send her a test kit to check her DNA: “We will take that little kit and say — but we have to do it gently. It’s the ‘Me Too’ generation, so we have to be very gentle. And we will gently take the kit and slowly toss it, hoping it didn’t hit her and injure her arm. Even though it weighs only 2 ounces.” In the same speech, he again insulted Rep. Waters’ intelligence, spewing the now-familiar mix of racism and misogyny.

Oh, no, insulted Maxie again! RACISM!

 

As bad as you thought global warming was, it’s far worse than that. Don’t mind the actual data which show changes in temperature far below previous models’ predictions, here’s a better model which shows that it’s going to get hotter faster and that the older models underestimate warming.

In their observations, the team saw that there are “amplifying mechanisms,” not well-represented in climate models, which make long-term warming worse than what is forecasted in climate models. “This suggests the carbon budget to avoid 2°C of global warming may be far smaller than estimated, leaving very little margin for error to meet the Paris targets,” said Hubertus Fischer, lead author and University of Bern professor.

And of course, no good climate science paper is complete without pleas for more and bigger government.

“This research is a powerful call to act. It tells us that if today’s leaders don’t urgently address our emissions, global warming will bring profound changes to our planet and way of life – not just for this century but well beyond.”

 

Old Guy Music, yet again. Feel free to ignore it and wallow in your nekulturni love of contemporary pop music. But this is the real deal, a classic, one of the most modally complex songs ever written, and here covered by a superb band. Besides the amazing (((Lee Konitz))), who amazingly is still alive and kicking at age 90, the band features one of my favorite trombonists, Jimmy Knepper.