I guess George Monbiot is getting his vitamin B-12 (still not a #vegan): Daily Bullshit, August 11, 2016

George Monbiot

George Monbiot has prevaricated on going vegan for a while.[1] I’m sometimes inclined to credit him for seeking honest answers. Other times I think he’s just fooling himself because the actual studies have been available for some time and he could just go to an academic library, do a literature search, and put his lingering questions to rest. This time, I think he’s just being absurd: Roadkill?[2] Really?

George Monbiot, “Stock Answer,” August 11, 2016, http://www.monbiot.com/2016/08/11/stock-answer/


Islamic State

Julian Hattem, “House GOP report finds intelligence manipulated on ISIS,” Hill, August 11, 2016, http://thehill.com/policy/national-security/291078-house-gop-report-finds-intelligence-manipulated-on-isis

Christoph Reuter, “Retreat and Delusion: Is the Islamic State Finally Collapsing?” Spiegel, August 10, 2016, http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/islamic-state-sees-power-erode-on-all-fronts-a-1106594.html


Gadsden Flag

Gadsden Flag, by Lexicon, Vikrum - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=1440653
Fig. 1. Gadsden Flag, by Lexicon, VikrumOwn work, CC BY-SA 3.0

The Gadsden Flag (figure 1) was, once upon a time, one of my favorites. I was entirely unaware—and indeed continued to be unaware until this case hit my radar—of the connotation involving slavery. That said, I see an argument that echoes that over the Tenth Amendment alleging the Federal Government has overstepped in exerting authority in realms reserved to the states. That would be the same argument that, as I noted in my dissertation, almost always rationalizes some form of institutionalized bigotry, particularly against people of color.[3]

You might notice I qualified that statement with the word almost and you might be inclined to dismiss that as just the usual academic hesitation about universal declarations. Not this time: There is also a states’ rights argument for respecting state laws legalizing marijuana, an argument that has been acknowledged even by President Obama, at least through his then-press secretary.[4] When I was admiring the Gadsden Flag, I was almost certainly thinking of personal autonomy, and what I see as a right to do with one’s body what one pleases (which I see as implicit in the Fourth Amendment). I was almost certainly thinking of both of government overreach in banning marijuana and a conservative desire to ban abortion.

I don’t know anywhere near enough about the workplace where this case arises. But I am wondering what that co-worker’s intent was.

Ed Silverstein, “Does wearing a Gadsden Flag insignia make for a hostile workplace?” Inside Counsel, August 11, 2016, http://www.insidecounsel.com/2016/08/11/does-wearing-a-gadsden-flag-insignia-make-for-a-ho


Horse race

Given how appalling both candidates are, I’m thinking “horse race” is entirely too kind a label. That economists are unhappy[5] is somewhat to be expected. Their prized oxen—neoliberal polices that are now being labeled a failure even in a functionalist conservative publication like Foreign Affairs[6]—are being gored by both major party candidates.[7]

Josh Zumbrun, “Economists See Election-Induced Uncertainty Harming U.S. Economy,” Wall Street Journal, August 11, 2016, http://www.wsj.com/articles/economists-see-election-induced-uncertainty-harming-u-s-economy-1470924003


Supreme Court

Bridget Bowman, “Reid: Democrats Considering Forcing Votes on Supreme Court Nominee,” Congressional Quarterly Roll Call, August 11, 2016, http://www.rollcall.com/news/reid-democrats-considering-forcing-votes-supreme-courtinee

  1. [1]George Monbiot, “Why vegans were right all along,” Guardian, December 23, 2002, http://www.theguardian.com/uk/2002/dec/24/christmas.famine; George Monbiot, “I was wrong about veganism. Let them eat meat – but farm it properly,” Guardian, September 6, 2010, http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2010/sep/06/meat-production-veganism-deforestation; George Monbiot, “Wrong About Being Wrong,” November 27, 2013, http://www.monbiot.com/2013/11/27/wrong-about-being-wrong/
  2. [2]George Monbiot, “Stock Answer,” August 11, 2016, http://www.monbiot.com/2016/08/11/stock-answer/
  3. [3]David Benfell, “Conservative Views on Undocumented Migration” (doctoral dissertation, Saybrook, 2016). ProQuest (1765416126).
  4. [4]White House, “Press Briefing by Press Secretary Jay Carney,” December 14, 2012, https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2012/12/14/press-briefing-press-secretary-jay-carney-12142012
  5. [5]Josh Zumbrun, “Economists See Election-Induced Uncertainty Harming U.S. Economy,” Wall Street Journal, August 11, 2016, http://www.wsj.com/articles/economists-see-election-induced-uncertainty-harming-u-s-economy-1470924003
  6. [6]Mark Blyth, “Capitalism in Crisis: What Went Wrong and What Comes Next,” review of Capitalism: A Short History, by Jürgen Kocka, Buying Time, by Wolfgang Streeck, and Postcapitalism, by Paul Mason, Foreign Affairs, July/August, 2016, https://www.foreignaffairs.com/reviews/review-essay/2016-06-13/capitalism-crisis
  7. [7]Josh Zumbrun, “Economists See Election-Induced Uncertainty Harming U.S. Economy,” Wall Street Journal, August 11, 2016, http://www.wsj.com/articles/economists-see-election-induced-uncertainty-harming-u-s-economy-1470924003

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