A Walt Whitman Poem for Election 2016

WaltWhitmanLOCGeorgeCoxAdamCuerdenBitterly fought elections are actually not uncommon in American history. Consider the election of 1800 when Thomas Jefferson and Aaron Burr tied among Electors. In words that some might think could be applicable to a certain contemporary orange-haired presidential candidate, Alexander Hamilton, a Federalist, explained why he preferred Democratic Republican Jefferson:

Mr. Jefferson, though too revolutionary in his notions, is yet a lover of liberty and will be desirous of something like orderly Government – Mr. Burr loves nothing but himself – thinks of nothing but his own aggrandizement – and will be content with nothing short of permanent power [struck: and] in his own hands – No compact, that he should make with any [struck: other] passion in his [struck: own] breast except [struck: his] Ambition, could be relied upon by himself – How then should we be able to rely upon any agreement with him? Mr. Jefferson, I suspect will not dare much Mr. Burr will [inserted in margin: dare every thing in the sanguine hope of effecting every thing –] … In a choice of Evils let them take the least – Jefferson is in every view less dangerous than Burr.

And perhaps even more apropos, there was the election of 1884, which the U.S. History website notes:

The campaign was extremely bitter and focused on the candidates` shortcomings. [Democrat Grover] Cleveland, years earlier in Buffalo, had fathered an illegitimate child. He had taken full financial responsibility for his offspring and publicly acknowledged that he had made a mistake. Republican opponents, however, kept the matter in the public mind by chanting, “Ma, Ma, where`s my Pa? Gone to the White House. Ha, ha, ha.”

[Republican James] Blaine, on the other hand, was a good family man, but had apparently engaged in questionable investment schemes while on the public payroll. Much of the campaign furor revolved around the difference between private and public misdeeds. Democratic partisans used the refrain, “Blaine, Blaine, James G. Blaine, the continental liar from the state of Maine!

Similar sorts of taunts echo through Election 2016. In response to the distempers of that 19th century presidential contest, Walt Whitman penned “Election Day, November, 1884.” Focus particularly on the last four lines.

ELECTION DAY, NOVEMBER, 1884.

If I should need to name, O Western World, your powerfulest
scene and show,

‘Twould not be you, Niagara—nor you, ye limitless prairies—nor
your huge rifts of canyons, Colorado,

Nor you, Yosemite—nor Yellowstone, with all its spasmic geyser-
loops ascending to the skies, appearing and disappearing,

Nor Oregon’s white cones—nor Huron’s belt of mighty lakes—
nor Mississippi’s stream:

—This seething hemisphere’s humanity, as now, I’d name—the
still small voice vibrating—America’s choosing day,

(The heart of it not in the chosen—the act itself the main, the
quadriennial choosing,)

The stretch of North and South arous’d—sea-board and inland
—Texas to Maine—the Prairie States—Vermont, Virginia,
California,

The final ballot-shower from East to West—the paradox and con-
flict,

The countless snow-flakes falling—(a swordless conflict,

Yet more than all Rome’s wars of old, or modern Napoleon’s:)
the peaceful choice of all,

Or good or ill humanity—welcoming the darker odds, the dross:

—Foams and ferments the wine? it serves to purify—while the
heart pants, life glows:

These stormy gusts and winds waft precious ships,

Swell’d Washington’s, Jefferson’s, Lincoln’s sails.

from Hit & Run http://reason.com/blog/2016/11/08/a-walt-whitman-poem-for-election-2016
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The Southern Poverty Law Center Has Little Authority to Claim Trump Has Driven Up School Bullying Rates

TrumpDonald Trump’s xenophobic, hate-filled campaign has undone years of progress on reducing bullying in schools, according to The Nation‘s Katherine Stewart.

“The damage to our school culture is already evident,” she writes. “Schools have invested years in anti-bullying programs, and a lot of that progress has been undone in a few short months. The damage to our political culture will likely be even greater, and take longer to repair.”

That’s a strong claim, since school anti-bullying initiatives have successfully driven down bullying rates in recent years. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, the bullying rate fell from 28 percent to 22 percent between 2011 and 2013, the most recent year for which data is available. We don’t know what the rate looks like in 2016, but Stewart appears confident it would be higher, and Trump is the cause.

Of course, we don’t really have any evidence of that, aside from anecdotes. Stewart cites a number of examples of teachers reporting truly horrific things—kids asking whether it’s okay to burn Jews, for example—and concludes that Trump’s rhetoric is responsible for an overall surge in race-based attacks on minority students. This is a plausible assumption: Trump’s policies are harmful to immigrants, and his followers do say racist things. (Go on Twitter and pick a fight with a member of the alt-right if you don’t believe me.) But has it made the overall school environment noticeably more hostile? It’s possible, but in lieu of relevant of data, I’m skeptical.

After all, it’s not so long ago that schoolyard brawls were commonplace—now these students are dealt with harshly, often by cops stationed in schools. When I was in school (the 90’s and 00’s), anyone even suspected of being gay was horribly bullied. Now schools have gay-straight alliances, sympathetic counselors and other programs aimed at encouraging acceptance. I’m sure there’s a lot more work to be done on this front, but it seems undeniable that the education system is a whole lot friendlier to LGBTQ kids. And bullying is actually defined much more broadly these days—miscreant students can get away with less.

Does the so-called “Trump effect” invalidate the progress on those and other fronts? Here’s author Mica Pollock in The Washington Post:

The National Education Association has been sharing teachers’ stories of anti-immigrant, anti-Muslim, and bullying talk on the rise as students cite and extend Trump’s rhetoric. Fall incidents include homemade “white pride” Trump T-shirts at high school homecoming; increasing incidents of Muslim students bullied on buses and in classrooms; and even explicit “Nazi” talk among students. And students are now hearing Trump supporters threaten armed rebellion if he doesn’t win.

“Trump Talk” has unleashed a wave of explicit hate and intimidation for educators to address. And to have a presidential candidate unleash such talk — especially without reproach from many powerful politicians — sets an extremely confusing example.

That’s because schools are places where hate speech, harassment and encouragement of violence are supposed to be challenged.

Challenged is different than censored, however—a distinction Pollock only sort of makes:

In schools, students are taught not to bully other people. And there are actual laws saying schools can’t just let hateful and violent speech go. As a professor colleague put it, “Trump speech on public campuses creates a very real tension between the civil liberty of speech and the civil right not to be intimidated.”

Civil-rights lawyer friends have clarified for me that any campus receiving federal funds has to debate a key issue in the era of Trump. When does speech — even speech protected under the First Amendment — produce a hostile environment, prohibited by federal and state civil-rights laws? Such laws forbid educators in federally funded public schools from tolerating or allowing an education environment in which harassment based on race, color or national origin (or sex, or disability) is “sufficiently severe, pervasive, or persistent so as to interfere with or limit a student’s ability to participate in or benefit from the services, activities, or opportunities offered by a school.”

First, there’s a huge difference between K-12 and college. Courts have given elementary, middle, and high schools much more leeway to prohibit offensive speech on the grounds that it is disruptive. Public university students, on the other hand, enjoy robust First Amendment protections. Laws prohibiting hostile educational environments do not supersede the Constitution, and administrators must be very careful not to conflate unconstitutional harassment with “hate” speech. Hate speech is not a category of prohibited expression.

Second, it’s incredibly self-serving for Hillary Clinton’s closest political allies—including the National Education Association—to argue that her opponent has worsened the school bullying problem. The closest thing to actual data in support of this position is a survey produced by the Southern Poverty Law Center. But, as I wrote recently, this survey is unscientific, and the SPLC has a history of making unfair accusations against people who aren’t particularly hateful but are nevertheless political enemies. In fact, the SPLC recently included Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Maajid Nawaz on its list of “Anti-Muslim Extremists”—a list that makes no distinction between liberal critics of Islamic jihadism and Pamella Geller.

I don’t think the SPLC is a particularly reliable arbiter of extremism, in other words.

As for teachers unions, keep in mind that they engage in bullying behavior all the time.

Trump is certainly a bully, and his toxic campaign could be making life worse for immigrant and minority children, which is a shame. But we haven’t seen any data on that yet, and we should be wary of liberal political activists trying to turn this to their advantage. Clinton has already vowed $500 million in spending on new anti-bullying initiatives to combat this latest scourge of hate, but we don’t know whether these solutions will be effective. We don’t even properly understand the scope of the problem, despite what the SPLC, teachers unions, and their media allies claim.

from Hit & Run http://reason.com/blog/2016/11/08/the-southern-poverty-law-center-has-litt
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While We Wait, This Is What Millions Of Americans Are Demanding Answers To Right Now

While we wait for the first exit polls, not to mention the first official results, millions of people across America have questions, and there is no better place to visualize who wants to know what than courtesy of this handy widget created by Google Trends has which shows in areas where there is above-average search interest in voting-related problems around the country. When a circle is flashing, it means there’s a spike in searches. Google doesn’t verify any of the problems flagged by its users; it just maps them.

 

Also courtesy of Google, we can see the real time interest in the head to head race between Trump and Hillary, at least when it comes to public curiosty. As usual, no contest here.

 

Looking at the state map, there is again, one name which dominates:

 

A slightly different google search, reveals then “vote Trump” dominates “vote Hillary”

 

Switching topics, here is a breakdown of the key issues by candidate:

The same as visualized by state:

 

Finally, here are the top candidate-related searches:

via http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-11-08/while-we-wait-what-millions-americans-are-demanding-answers-right-now Tyler Durden

While We Wait, This Is What Millions Of Americans Are Demanding Answers To Right Now

While we wait for the first exit polls, not to mention the first official results, millions of people across America have questions, and there is no better place to visualize who wants to know what than courtesy of this handy widget created by Google Trends has which shows in areas where there is above-average search interest in voting-related problems around the country. When a circle is flashing, it means there’s a spike in searches. Google doesn’t verify any of the problems flagged by its users; it just maps them.

 

Also courtesy of Google, we can see the real time interest in the head to head race between Trump and Hillary, at least when it comes to public curiosty. As usual, no contest here.

 

Looking at the state map, there is again, one name which dominates:

 

A slightly different google search, reveals then “vote Trump” dominates “vote Hillary”

 

Switching topics, here is a breakdown of the key issues by candidate:

The same as visualized by state:

 

Finally, here are the top candidate-related searches:

via http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2016-11-08/while-we-wait-what-millions-americans-are-demanding-answers-right-now Tyler Durden

WTI Crude Rises After Big Drawdown In Gasoline, Distillate Inventories

Following last week's record build in crude inventories, API reported a bigger than expected crude build this week (+4.40mm vs +2mm exp), but the huge draw in gasoline was the most notable (-3.6mm vs -1.5mm exp) as we suspect Colonial pipeline fallout affected levels. Distillates also saw the 7th consecutive draw (-4.3mm). WTI's initial reaction to the crude build was lower but the product draw sent priecs higher.

API

  • Crude +4.40mm (+2mm exp)
  • Cushing +156k (+300k exp)
  • Gasoline -3.6mm (-1.5mm)
  • Distillates -4.3mm

Following last week's biggest crude inventory build ever, crude built again but products saw a major drawdown…

 

WTI Crude futures prices are down from around $50 to $44 in the last two weeks (and down from last week's big build)… WTI was around $47 before last week's API print… Prices dipped on the crude build butthe product drawdowns sparked buying..

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It’s All A Russia/Al-Qaeda/WikiLeaks/”Rogue” FBI Plot

Authored by Pepe Escobar, originally posted op-ed via Strategic-Culture.org,

Among the House of Cards-infested cliffhangers that defined the «circus is in town» US election (to quote Nobel Prize winner Bob Dylan’s Desolation Row), the key question in the lead up towards Election Day was why the FBI finally folded.

FBI Director James Comey, at the 11th hour, ended up delivering another letter to Congress, marveling how his team «has been working around the clock» studying no less than 650,000 emails on the laptop belonging to Anthony Weiner, the sex pervert estranged husband of Hillary Clinton’s top aid Huma Abedin

Comey finally concluded the FBI had not found anything to change its previous verdict regarding Hillary’s Subterranean Email Server. «Extreme carelessness», yes; but no criminal wrongdoing.

All this while among the http://twitter.com/wikileaks.

Podesta emails published by WikiLeaks, an explicit admission can be found in a November 10, 2008 internal review that the Clinton Foundation was breaking the law.

Moreover, The Big Picture had been quite clear all along; the Clinton Foundation as well as the Clinton Global Initiative were both operated as «political organizations» totally focused on boosting «pay to play».

A case could be made that the first Comey letter to Congress was a response to a FBI internal revolt. Agents that were part of the insurgency are not likely to quit the long game – even after the election. They have made sure that the real deal is with the Clinton Foundation, not Hillary’s emails.

So leaks are bound to continue. Even before the first Comey letter, FBI insurgents swore «there already is enough to indict». They insisted, «Comey has been trying to stall because he does not want to face the Clinton machine, as well as the rest of Washington D.C». They were sure «foreign powers are in possession of some of the documents we have analyzed, because they were hacked from the Clinton server».

The insurgents, for the sake of clarity, were insisting that the buck stopped with the Clinton Foundation, which sold «influence, intel, favors to anyone willing to pay». Obama was «tied in with the same people who donate to the Clinton Foundation». On that notorious, «secret» Bill Clinton meeting with Attorney General Loretta Lynch – an Obama asset – they maintained that Clinton «wanted Loretta Lynch to focus on the email server and shy away from prosecuting the foundation». 

In a nutshell; in the Clinton Foundation dossier there’s allegedly enough information to bring the whole US government (USG) down.

And over Hillary, specifically, hangs an incendiary charge; SAPs (Special Access Programs) were found on her server.  

The insurgents clarified how a «SAP is an intelligence program classified above top-secret. They are held on closed servers at secret locations. The only way to get one is if you are specifically read on to a program, have a need to know, then you must physically go to a location and pass through several layers of security to even look at the program. SAP is granted on a need to know basis, and Hillary did not have any need to know any of the programs on her server».

All that was still not enough to get an indictment out of the FBI. Well, certainly not before Election Day, considering that if the FBI went ahead it would be facing no less than the full might/wrath of the USG.

A New York source with solid business/financial connections among the Masters of the Universe came up with a quite cryptic answer when I posed him some of the questions raised above:

«I would not say the FBI revolt took place. Comey was ordered to do what he did before and he was ordered to do what he did after. The orders were just reversed and it is as a marionette with a ventriloquist. No one steps out of bounds».

But he also said, less than 24 hours before Election Day: «We think Trump will win and they are making everyone think that this is democracy in action». For emphasis, the source referred to the quite serious USC Dornsife /LA Times poll, which had Trump ahead by 5 points on the popular vote.

Here is a defense of the poll by one of his authors.

The Russians are hacking

As the FBI turnaround managed at best to enrage both campaigns, nothing was left to chance by the Deep State. What can be arguably construed as two major US terror proxies – «al-Qaeda» (which one? «Historic» al-Qaeda in Afghanistan? AQAP? AQIM? «Moderate» al-Nusra in Syria?) as well as ISIS/ISIL/Daesh – in conjunction with dodgy jihadist tracker SITE, went on full-time PsyWar mode with the intent of creating false flag pretexts.

US intel duly warned of «possible al-Qaeda attacks» on the eve of Election Day. Right on cue, Rita Katz, the head and 2001 co-founder of SITE, said these jihadi incitements were «an attempt to disrupt the election process and gain media attention».?

There’s no evidence these threats are real. SITE after all never shies away from practicing disinformation. Katz in the past has briefed the White House, as well as Justice, Treasury and Homeland Security on terrorist financing and recruitment networks. A senior adviser to SITE is Bruce Hoffman, a former holder of the RAND Corporate Chair in Counterterrorism and Counterinsurgency.

Couple the «al-Qaeda threat» with turbo-charged demonization of Russia – and we have the perfect excuse scenario in case anything happens not according to script (and the script rules Hillary Clinton as POTUS).

Team Obama duly spun that Russia not only was bent on mightily acting/hacking on Election Day, but would propel the disruption all across the West well into 2018. And Tom Graham, managing director of Kissinger Associates in New York and former adviser to George «Dubya» Bush on Russia, doubled down, insisting that more emails «may» be dumped (by insidious WikiLeaks) after Election Day.

This should all lead to a Hollywood ending though. May the «free world» be reassured; the noxious axis of Putin-Assange-al-Zawahiri-rogue FBI agents will be dismantled – to the glory of the Queen of the Perma-Smirk soon to be crowned Warmonger-in-Chief.

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It’s Election Day, Trump Loses Nevada Lawsuit, Clinton Ready to Claim the Iron Throne: P.M. Links

  • Election Day is here, R’hllor save us.
  • Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton cast their votes—presumably, for themselves. But you never know.
  • Trump loses lawsuit against Nevada over the state’s early voting procedures, which he claims benefited Clinton.
  • FiveThirtyEight: A lot of things could happen, but probably Clinton will win.
  • I’m still skeptical that there’s actual data to support the idea of a “Trump effect” on school bullying.
  • James O’Keefe, in search of nonexistent voter fraud, might be breaking the law himself.
  • Here’s my Electoral College prediction. I also made a $10 bet that Trump will get more than 200 Electoral Votes.

270

from Hit & Run http://reason.com/blog/2016/11/08/its-election-day-trump-loses-nevada-laws
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Just Like Daddy: Eric Trump’s Ballot Selfie Tweet Stirs Controversy

Another member of the Trump clan might have landed himself in trouble over his use of Twitter.

Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump frequently has touched off controversy with his seemingly unfiltered use of Twitter before and during the 2016 campaign, but it was Donald’s son Eric who might have broken New York state law on Tuesday by tweeting a photo of his ballot.

“It is an incredible honor to vote for my father! He will do such a great job for the U.S.A.!” Eric Trump posted to Twitter on Tuesday morning, along with a photo of his ballot and a “Make America Great Again” hashtag. The tweet was later deleted.

Eric apparently wanted the world to know that he did indeed vote for his father, for whom the younger Trump has been a frequent surrogate during the campaign. The problem: under New York law, so-called “ballot selfies” are illegal and carry a fine of up to $1,000 and up to a year in prison.

Those punishments are pretty absurd, but it’s rather unlikely that Eric Trump—or other famous ballot-selfie-takers like Justin Timberlake, who seemingly violated Tennessee law by posting a picture of his ballot last week—will face any form of punishments. Still, state laws against pictures of filled-out ballots have drawn attention this year as arcane election rules have collided head-on with the quintessential millennial activity of selfie-taking to commemorate even the most mundane of experiences.

Some states are overturning ballot selfie bans. A federal judge in Michigan ruled last month that a law prohibiting ballot selfies was a violation of the First Amendment. Similar laws were tossed by federal judges in Colorado and Kentucky just days before the election.

A similar First Amendment legal challenge to New York’s ballot selfie law was launched days before the election, but a federal judge upheld the law.

According to the Associated Press, there are 17 states where ballot selfies are currently illegal (including Eric Trump’s home state of New York) and 13 other states where the legality is not clear.

from Hit & Run http://ift.tt/2fe0YrH
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Anti-Vermin Measure on Ballot in Florida

AedesAegyptiUFloridaOn the ballot in Key Haven, Florida: “Are you in favor of the Florida Keys Mosquito Control District conducting an effectiveness trial in Key Haven using genetically modified mosquitoes to suppress an invasive mosquito that carries mosquito-borne diseases?”

Specifically voters are being asked if male mosquitoes modified to pass along a gene that is lethal to the larva of the biting vermin can be released as a way to reduce the population of the non-native Aedes aegypti mosquito that transmits the dengue, Zika, and chikungunya viruses. As ScienceInsider explains:

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) greenlighted the project in August, but local opposition has been so strong that the mosquito control board has held off on approving the release. The ballot referenda—one for Key Haven and another for the broader Monroe County—are nonbinding. But three of the five board members have said they will follow the voters’ decision. Oxitec has been releasing mosquitoes in other countries since 2009; the Cayman Islands, Malaysia, Brazil, and Panama have all hosted field experiments, and the company has reported greater than 90% reductions in mosquito populations in small test areas.

Zika-carrying Aedes aegypti mosquitoes are now biting Floridians and visitors in Miami with nearly 1,200 infections confirmed so far. Regular mosquito control efforts using pesticides have not worked and some residents claim to fear pesticide poisoning more than the virus.

So Key Haven residents, you don’t have to vote for one pest over another. Vote YES to modern and ecologically gentle pest control.

If people won’t vote against disease-carrying mosquitoes, what hope is there for the survival of the Republic?

from Hit & Run http://reason.com/blog/2016/11/08/anti-vermin-measure-on-ballot-in-florida
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“It’s Quiet, Too Quiet” – Stocks, Peso Bid But Hedgers Panic Buying Protection In US, Mexico

Could be worse… right?

 

A mixed day with some markets shrugging…

G7 FX Vol dropped…

 

Mexican Peso rallied…

 

Stocks rallied and VIX dropped…

 

And some markets turmoiling…

US Equity Put/Call ratio hit a record high…

 

Bearish bets on Mexico also soared to a record high…

 

USDJPY Overnight vol exploded…

 

VIX term structure is as inverted as before Brexit…

 

Systemic macro overlays remain extremely heavy (though came off a little in the last 2 days)…

 

*  *  *

Stocks opened lower on the day, but as fake data came in from supposed real-time forecasts, so stocks (and the peso) were bid…

 

Hurts?

 

Treasury yields rose on the day…

 

HY Credit spreads drifted lower again – erasing half of the losing streak losses…

 

The USD Index rose for the 2nd day in a row, stalling at 98.00…

 

With Yen weakness the biggest help (as CAD strengthened modestly)…

 

Gold and crude trod water today but silver and copper exploded higher after the US open…

 

Copper soared for the 12th day in a row… a record as hedgies piled in…

 

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