They’re all still lying about Iraq: The real story about the biggest blunder in American history — and the right wing’s obsessive need to cover it up – Salon.com

Republicans’ verbal gyrations over the Iraq War should not be dismissed as the usual rhetorical jabberwocky of an election season. Their stumblings and justifications provide an important window into a larger, crucial story. They reveal that Movement Conservatives remain rooted in a worldview that has been outdated for so long it is now delusional.

The tempest began in a teapot when Fox News’s Megyn Kelly asked Jeb Bush whether he would have gone into Iraq knowing what we know now. Bush said yes, defending the 2003 invasion that more than 70% of Americans now think was a mistake. This answer prompted astonished observers to wonder how he could have fumbled so badly. Within days, Bush stammered first to the suggestion that he had misheard the question, and then concluded that he would, in fact, have opposed the operation altogether.

But Bush’s first answer was not an error. It revealed his continuing loyalty to a series of principles to which he actually put his name in 1997. With those principles, a group of elite white men set out to revive the Cold War world that had given men like them control of the rest of humanity. Those principles dictated the Iraq War, and — although they are completely obsolete — they still animate Movement Conservatives.

via They’re all still lying about Iraq: The real story about the biggest blunder in American history — and the right wing’s obsessive need to cover it up – Salon.com.

Joseph Stiglitz: ‘GDP per capita in the UK is lower than it was before the crisis. That is not a success’ | Books | The Guardian

Think back to 2008. There was an inquest into Princess Diana’s death, Portsmouth won the FA Cup and Jonathan Ross and Russell Brand got in trouble for making a prank call to Andrew Sachs. Oh yeah, and the global economy almost collapsed.

To prevent the disintegration of international banking, and capitalism as we know it, governments were forced to pour trillions of dollars into rescue packages. In Britain alone, government loans to and investment in the banks amounted to hundreds of billions of pounds, which in turn presaged a debt crisis and years of austerity measures.

The world was in a dire mess and investment bankers, with their incomprehensible derivatives and collateralised debt obligations, were widely seen as the venal culprits. As deep recession took hold, almost everyone agreed the banks had become too powerful, the economy unbalanced, and that the executive pay and bonus culture in the finance industry was out of control. The common sentiment was that things could not carry on like this. Drastic change was needed.

via Joseph Stiglitz: ‘GDP per capita in the UK is lower than it was before the crisis. That is not a success’ | Books | The Guardian.

Bank of England accidentally emails Brexit taskforce plans to newspaper – Telegraph

The Bank of England has accidentally revealed that it has set up a taskforce to look at how a UK exit from the European Union will affect the economy.

“Project Bookend” – as the Bank has dubbed the initiative – will be led by Sir Jon Cunliffe, deputy governor and a board member at the Prudential Regulatory Authority.

via Bank of England accidentally emails Brexit taskforce plans to newspaper – Telegraph.

George W. Bush’s CIA briefer admits Iraq WMD “intelligence” was a lie – Salon.com

A flurry of politicians quickly declaring their candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination has meant that the Bush administration’s Iraq War is back in the national conversation. Jeb Bush has been forced to answer for his brother’s mistakes, while others like Marco Rubio have toed the party line — knowing the information that the administration knew at the time, they too would have invaded Iraq.

The thing is, the Iraq War was not the result of an intelligence goof — rather, the country’s top office systematically misled the public about Iraq’s nonexistent WMD program, as well as Saddam Hussein’s link to Al Qaeda.

via George W. Bush’s CIA briefer admits Iraq WMD “intelligence” was a lie – Salon.com.

Chris Hedges: “Wages of Rebellion: The Moral Imperative of Revolt” – YouTube

Chris Hedges: “Wages of Rebellion: The Moral Imperative of Revolt” – YouTube.

Texas Governor Signs Bill That Makes Local Fracking Bans Illegal | ThinkProgress

Texas lawmakers have made it clear you don’t mess with Texas when it comes to extracting fossil fuels. Even if you’re a Texan.

On Monday, Texas governor Greg Abbott signed legislation that prohibits cities across Texas from banning hydraulic fracturing from their home turf. In what was a major agenda item for Texas lawmakers this session, towns like Denton, Texas — which passed the state’s first local fracking ban last November — will no longer be able to exercise local control over the oil and gas industry when it comes to nearby extraction.

The law will take effect immediately as it passed both chambers by more than a two-thirds margin. Communities will now only be able to impose ordinances that regulate aboveground activity related to oil and gas operations, such as things relating to traffic, noise, lights, or “reasonable setback requirements,” which dictate how far away drilling must be from buildings. The law is meant to ensure that these local surface regulations are commercially reasonable and do not “effectively” prohibit oil and gas operations.

In signing the bill, Gov. Abbott said it “does a profound job of helping to protect private property rights here in the State of Texas, ensuring those who own their own property will not have the heavy hand of local regulation deprive them of their rights.”

via Texas Governor Signs Bill That Makes Local Fracking Bans Illegal | ThinkProgress.

I’ve Read Obama’s Secret Trade Deal. Elizabeth Warren Is Right to Be Concerned. – Michael Wessel – POLITICO Magazine

“You need to tell me what’s wrong with this trade agreement, not one that was passed 25 years ago,” a frustrated President Barack Obama recently complained about criticisms of the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP). He’s right. The public criticisms of the TPP have been vague. That’s by design—anyone who has read the text of the agreement could be jailed for disclosing its contents. I’ve actually read the TPP text provided to the government’s own advisors, and I’ve given the president an earful about how this trade deal will damage this nation. But I can’t share my criticisms with you.

I can tell you that Elizabeth Warren is right about her criticism of the trade deal. We should be very concerned about what’s hidden in this trade deal—and particularly how the Obama administration is keeping information secret even from those of us who are supposed to provide advice.

via I’ve Read Obama’s Secret Trade Deal. Elizabeth Warren Is Right to Be Concerned. – Michael Wessel – POLITICO Magazine.