Month: November 2016

Quote of the Day

Steve Mnuchin is the Forrest Gump of the financial crisis — he managed to participate in all the worst practices on Wall Street

Senator Elizabeth Warren, on his record of peddling financial toxic waste at the Vampire Squid, which he followed by running a bank (Indymac) which was the worst on foreclosure servicing in the nation.

Mnuchin is Trump’s nominee for Treasury Secretary.

How Unsurprising

Fresh on statements that he would not attempt to have Hillary Clinton prosecuted, Donald Trump is contacting foreign governments to pressure them to investigate the Clinton Foundation:

While President-elect Donald Trump earlier announced a U-turn on investigating Hillary Clinton, he is now reportedly planning to pressure foreign governments to look into the finances of the Clinton Foundation.

During one of the campaign debates, Trump said once he is in the oval office he would appoint a special prosecutor to investigate Hillary Clinton’s alleged misgivings, including the use of a private email server and involvement in the Clinton Foundation.

“You’d be in jail,” he warned his rival if he were to win the election.

After his election victory he made a U-turn on the threat. But according to the New York Post, the Trump administration would pressure foreign governments to investigate the financial dealings of the Clinton Foundation.

He gets to look magnanimous, and he gets to look shocked when he is “Forced” by new facts uncovered by foreign governments to go after a possible rival.

How convenient.


Barack Obama said that he can’t pardon Edward Snowden because he has not been presented before a judge.

This is a blatant and transparent lie.

The President’s powers with regard to federal offenses are very broad.

They can grant clemency on a whim.  The person need not to have been charged, nor do the offenses need to be specified.

Just witness Gerald Ford’s pardon of Richard Nixon, and George H.W. Bush’s self-serving pardons of his Iran Contra co-conspirators.

Worst Constitutional Law Professor Ever

The Clintons are a Cancer on the American Body Politic

I am not talking about Hillary Clinton losing the election, though that is where the buck stops for that debacle, I am talking about the legacy of pain and misery for the poor and minorities that they have left in their wake.

First, of course was the 1994 crime bill, the one that Hillary Clinton supported in racially charged terms when she said that we, “Have to bring them to heel.”

While we have the benefit of hindsight, the Clintons could not have known that Nixon’s removal of lead from gasoline would have crime falling 25 years hence, (see here, here, and here) and there was a national hysteria over crime.

Second and perhaps more significant, and more contemptible was, the Clinton’s systematic dismantling of Welfare, reducing it to little more than a block grant routinely used by states as a slush fund, while severe poverty in the United States has skyrocketed:

Twenty years ago today, President Bill Clinton signed the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act, better known as the Welfare Reform Act. Clinton promised it would “end welfare as we know it.”

And it did. Because of the reform act, welfare funding now is called TANF, or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families – with a strong emphasis on “temporary.” Unlike before, welfare recipients now have a clock ticking when they first start receiving benefits. They are cut off from receiving federal benefits after five years (and in some states, it’s less).

The bill also changed how the federal government manages welfare dollars. Now, states get the money first and decide how to distribute it. Before, needy families received cash benefits directly through the federal welfare program.

This has meant welfare money has gone to some pretty surprising items, such as college scholarships for middle-class college students, and relationship counseling for married or seriously dating couples.


In the Reveal episode “A Welfare Check,” Marketplace reporter Krissy Clark digs into one of the biggest changes to come out of the reform: States get to manage their welfare dollars. This leaves them with a lot of freedom to choose how to spend the money, and they just have to state that the money is going to one of these four purposes:


And what they found was a stark change in how states use welfare dollars. Before reform, states were pretty much in the same place. The overwhelming majority of welfare dollars went to cash assistance. That share has gotten smaller and smaller since 1996, and in 2014, 26 percent of all TANF dollars in the country went to cash assistance. The rest has gone to other things entirely.

In Michigan, for example, the state spends nearly $100 million a year in TANF money on college scholarships. For more than a decade in Oklahoma, TANF dollars funded relationship classes for seriously dating and married couples of all income brackets.

In Indiana it goes to phony anti-abortion “Pregnancy Crisis Centers”, which are contractually bound not to inform women of all their health options, because, one way to reduce out of wedlock births, one of the goals of the bill, is to force women to carry their fetus to term.

This was foreseeable, and it was part of a pattern of the Clinton Presidency, turning things into block grants, farming out government functions to more expensive private contractors because it produced political advantage, aggressive deregulation (including repealing Glass-Steagall), etc.

While I have some small fondness for the Clinton Presidency, it is largely an artifact of the Republican’s attempted coup impeachment attempt, because the Clintons were bad for the country, and a disaster for the Democratic Party.

The radio show is embedded below:

Today in Completely Tasteless and Offensive Crap

Oh, my f%$#ing God, It’s Real!

Performing a Holocaust themed skating routine, complete with striped uniforms and yellow stars:

The wife of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s chief spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, sparked outrage on social media by performing a Holocaust-themed ice skating routine that quickly went viral.

Tatiana Navka, a former Olympic figure skating champion, performed with actor Andrey Burkovsky, each wearing concentration camp uniforms and yellow Stars of David.

The two skated to the song “Beautiful That Way,” by Israeli singer Achinoam “Noa” Nini. The song was featured in a 1997 Italian-language Oscar-winning Holocaust film, which Navka said was the inspiration for the performance. She also said in an Instagram post that she wanted the performance to teach children about the Holocaust.

I have no words.

Nope, No Corruption Here

Now that Hillary Clinton isn’t going to be President, the government of Australia is ending its contributions to the Clinton foundation:

Australia has finally ceased pouring millions of dollars into accounts linked to Hillary Clinton’s charities.

Which might make you wonder: Why were we donating to them in the first place?

The federal government confirmed to it has not renewed any of its partnerships with the scandal-plagued Clinton Foundation, effectively ending 10 years of taxpayer-funded contributions worth more than $88 million.

The Clinton Foundation has a rocky past. It was described as “a slush fund”, is still at the centre of an FBI investigation and was revealed to have spent more than $50 million on travel.

Despite that, the official website for the charity shows contributions from both AUSAID and the Commonwealth of Australia, each worth between $10 million and $25 million.

We’ll be seeing a lot more of this, because the Clinton Foundation was structured to create this sort of, “moral ambiguity,” and now that Hillary Clinton will never be President, expect to see a lot of people ending the relationship with the organization.

The Clintons won’t suffer, they never made any money from the Foundation, but it was an instrument for them to keep their “Posse” together, and the band ain’t getting back together.

I Didn’t Think That It Was Possible, but Donald Trump Just Disappointed Me

Maddow has some more on this sorry excuse for a human being

OK, not just disappointed. I am also horrified, but I kind of expect to be horrified by him.

I did not expect to be disappointed, because my expectations are so f%$#ing low, but the inverted traffic cone has outdone himself.

Specifically, Trump’s appointee as deputy national security adviser, Kathleen Troia “KT” McFarland, who is infamous for outing her brother as gay to her family while he was dying of AIDS:

In between Twitter claims that he lost the popular vote due to voter fraud instead of due to alienating over half the nation by being the dictionary definition of “The Worst,” President-elect Donald Trump somehow finds time to fill out his staff with people you wouldn’t trust to pick up dog sh%$.

As the Washington Blade reports, Trump’s pick for deputy national security adviser is basically a monster. Kathleen Troia “KT” McFarland, FOX News contributor and former Pentagon official during the Reagan administration, outed her gay brother, who was dying of AIDS, to their family.

The Blade is referring to a 2006 New York Magazine article, when McFarland was gearing up to challenge Hillary Clinton for her Senate seat, which unearthed a 1992 letter to her then-estranged parents:

“Have you ever wondered why I have never had anything to do with Mike and have never let my daughters see him although we live only fifteen minutes away from each other?” she wrote. “He has been a lifelong homosexual, most of his relationships brief, fleeting one-night stands.”

McFarland tried to downplay the letter at the time, claiming it was a form of therapy to deal with abuse she and her siblings had suffered at the hands of their parents—abuse both her parents and at least one of her siblings denied.

“It’s a complete fabrication,” Tom Troia told the New York Post back in 2006 regarding his sister’s allegations. “If I had one word to describe my sister, it would be ‘evil.’”


Former Geroge W. Bush National Security Council member Peter D. Feaver told The Times McFarland’s job is supposed to be “the place where bad ideas die,” but as Donald Trump’s other appointees make glaringly clear, there is no longer such a place.

(%$ mine)

There is also the long history of resume padding, as Maddow discusses above, but that doesn’t disappoint me:  I expect sh%$ like that from a Trump administration.

Quote of the Day

But, if the global Left is to have any meaning in the future of the world, and I would argue that the global Right will destroy us all if it doesn’t, then it must get beyond post-structural paralysis and go back to the future of fighting not just for social justice issues but for equity based upon class. Empowerment is not just about language, it’s about capital, who’s got it, who hasn’t and what role government plays between them.

All sex is not rape, but most poverty is.

David Llewellyn-Smith

(emphasis mine)

H/t naked capitalism

Mistake, My Ass

The US military has now admitted to bombing Syrian government forces in September, but claims that it was an unfortunate accident.

This happened days after a cooperation deal was cut between the Russians and the US, and it had the effect of torpedoing the deal.

I do not believe that it was a mistake.  I believe that someone in the US chain of command did this deliberately to queer the deal.

Of course, you will never find out who, but you can fire those in the chain of command for incompetence, and that should have been done at the time.

Get the F%$# Over Yourselves

The British have come up with a new fiver, and vegetarians are losing their sh%$ because there are tiny quantities of animal fat used in the process of making the notes:

Britain’s new £5 note contains animal fat, the Bank of England confirmed on Twitter.

In reply to a user who asked if the substance is used, the central bank said that there is “a trace of tallow in the polymer pellets used in the base substrate of the polymer £5 notes.”

Tallow is the fat that surrounds a cow’s organs and is often used in soaps and candles.

Vegetarians and vegans reacted furiously to the news that animal fat is used in the note, which is the first to be made of polymer and has been touted as Britain’s most advanced ever.

Twitter user Steffi Rox asked “what consideration was given to vegans & their human rights,” while another user said the news gives a whole new meaning to the term “blood money.”

As an aside, this tallow is also used in credit cards, many plastic toys, wire insulation, etc.

Still, this does not prevent the Granola crowd from going full Sepoy Mutiny over this.

Sorry, but society does not have any obligation to accommodate your particular lifestyle choices in the production of currency, though if I were in Parliament, I would put forth a bill to replace the plastic bills with ones made from dried beef, but I’m kind of a jerk.

On second thought, I would make the currency from veal confined in boxes until the calf’s throats were slit.

From the Former Kaplan Test Prep Company, Now a Subsidiary of

The Washington Post quoting an anonymous group of “experts” comes up with a blacklist of Russian propaganda sites.

It is, as Glenn Greenwald of The Intercept notes, a mishmash of dubious methodology juxtaposed with calls for “official investigations”.

If you want a point by point take-down of the facts, or lack therof, in the WaPo story and its pet anonymous bloggers (see attached Herblock cartoon), read Greenwald, but if you want moral outrage done right, I would suggest that you read Matt Taibbi’s commentary in Rolling Stone, who meticulously dissects how the Post ignored even the most basic of journalistic due diligence.

Last week, a technology reporter for the Washington Post named Craig Timberg ran an incredible story. It has no analog that I can think of in modern times. Headlined “Russian propaganda effort helped spread ‘fake news’ during election, experts say,” the piece promotes the work of a shadowy group that smears some 200 alternative news outlets as either knowing or unwitting agents of a foreign power, including popular sites like Truthdig and Naked Capitalism.

The thrust of Timberg’s astonishingly lazy report is that a Russian intelligence operation of some kind was behind the publication of a “hurricane” of false news reports during the election season, in particular stories harmful to Hillary Clinton. The piece referenced those 200 websites as “routine peddlers of Russian propaganda.”

The piece relied on what it claimed were “two teams of independent researchers,” but the citing of a report by the longtime anticommunist Foreign Policy Research Institute was really window dressing.

The meat of the story relied on a report by unnamed analysts from a single mysterious “organization” called PropOrNot – we don’t know if it’s one person or, as it claims, over 30 – a “group” that seems to have been in existence for just a few months.

It was PropOrNot’s report that identified what it calls “the list” of 200 offending sites. Outlets as diverse as, and the Ron Paul Institute were described as either knowingly directed by Russian intelligence, or “useful idiots” who unwittingly did the bidding of foreign masters.


What this apparently means is that if you published material that meets their definition of being “useful” to the Russian state, you could be put on the “list,” and “warrant further scrutiny.”


Any halfway decent editor would have been scared to death by any of these factors. Moreover the vast majority of reporters would have needed to see something a lot more concrete than a half-assed theoretical paper from such a dicey source before denouncing 200 news organizations as traitors.

But if that same source also demanded anonymity on the preposterous grounds that it feared being “targeted by Russia’s legions of skilled hackers”? Any sane reporter would have booted them out the door. You want to blacklist hundreds of people, but you won’t put your name to your claims? Take a hike.


Most high school papers wouldn’t touch sources like these. But in November 2016, both the president-elect of the United States and the Washington Post are equally at ease with this sort of sourcing.


Even worse, the Post apparently never contacted any of the outlets on the “list” before they ran their story. Yves Smith at Naked Capitalism says she was never contacted. Chris Hedges of Truthdig, who was part of a group that won the Pulitzer Prize for The New York Times once upon a time, said the same. “We were named,” he tells me. “I was not contacted.”


Helping Beltway politicos mass-label a huge portion of dissenting media as “useful idiots” for foreign enemies in this sense is an extraordinarily self-destructive act. Maybe the Post doesn’t care and thinks it’s doing the right thing. In that case, at least do the damn work.

Also, note that Mark Ames notes that whoever is running their official Twitter account is a Ukranian fascist:  (I am not using metaphor here, I am talking real fascists)

Wow. The @washingtonpost anonymous source for blacklisting US journalists recently tweeted 1940s Ukrainian fascist “Heroiam Slava!” salute

— Mark Ames (@MarkAmesExiled) November 26, 2016

It appears to be that the Washington Post could not even be bothered to read this guy’s Twitter feed.

They cited someone who is blogging in his pajamas who lives in his parents’ basement.

Just Read This

Masha Gessen writes about her family history and Donald Trump.

What makes this difference is that her great-grandfather was part of the Bialystok Ghetto Judenrat, and her Grandmother was a censor for Stalin:

I grew up knowing that my great-grandfather smuggled guns into the Bialystok ghetto for the resistance, which staged an armed uprising there in August 1943. As an adult, researching a book about collaboration and resistance, using my own family history, I found out why my great-grandfather had been in a position to arm the resistance: he was one of the leaders of the Bialystok Judenrat, the Nazi-appointed Jewish council that ran the ghetto.

My great-grandfather’s story was at once an extreme and a typical example. Criminal regimes function in part by forcing the maximum number of subjects to participate in the atrocities. For nearly a century, individuals in various parts of the Western world have struggled with the question of how, and how much, we should engage politically and personally with governments that we find morally abhorrent.

With the election of Donald Trump—a candidate who has lied his way into power, openly embraced racist discourse and violence, toyed with the idea of jailing his opponents, boasted of his assaults on women and his avoidance of taxes, and denigrated the traditional checks and balances of government—this question has confronted us as urgently as ever. After I wrote a piece about surviving autocracy, a great many people have asked me about one of my proposed rules: “Do not compromise.” What constitutes compromise? How is it possible to avoid it? Why should one not compromise?

When I wrote about my great-grandfather in a book many years ago, I included the requisite discussion of Hannah Arendt’s opinion on the Jewish councils in Nazi-occupied Europe, which she called “undoubtedly the darkest chapter of the whole dark story” of the Holocaust. In her book Eichmann in Jerusalem she asserted that without Jewish cooperation Germany would have been unable to round up and kill as many Jews as it did. I quoted equally from the most comprehensive response to Arendt’s characterization of the Judenrat, Isaiah Trunk’s book Judenrat, in which he described the councils as complicated and contradictory organizations, ones that had functioned differently in different ghettos, and ultimately concluded that they had no effect on the final scope of the catastrophe.

When my grandmother—the Judenrat leader’s daughter—read the manuscript of my book, she demanded that I remove the Arendt quote. I told her I could not: as controversial as Arendt’s view was (and continues to be, forty years after her death), one cannot write about the Jewish councils and not acknowledge it. But I sincerely assured my grandmother that I viewed her father, who had been a local politician before the war, as a deeply moral man who did only what he thought was best for his people. My grandmother refused to understand; she and I did not speak for a few years after the book came out.


That was the argument [that the job would get done by someone anyway] my other grandmother used when she became a censor for the Soviet government. Her argument was by no means a moral cop-out. On the contrary, it was a moral choice. She had been trained to be a history teacher, but she decided that she could not engage in the act of active lying, especially to children. She did not want to use her charm, beauty, and kindness to make children think the way Stalin wanted them to think. So she became a censor. Her job was to open personal mail that arrived from abroad, read it, and block it if it contained banned material, such as a copy of For Whom the Bell Tolls or Western natural-science magazines that an émigré kept sending his scientist brother.


In Bialystok ghetto, my great-grandfather’s responsibility in the Judenrat was to ensure that the ghetto was supplied with food. He ran the trucks that brought food in and took garbage out, he ran the canteen and supervised the community gardens that a group of young socialists planted. He also discouraged the young socialists from trying to organize a resistance movement: it would be of no use and would only jeopardize the ghetto’s inhabitants. It took him almost two years to change his mind about the resistance efforts, as he slowly lost hope that the Judenrat, by generally following the rules and keeping the ghetto inhabitants in line, would be able to save at least some of them.

As in other ghettos, the Judenrat was ultimately given the task of compiling the lists of Jews to be “liquidated.” The Bialystok Judenrat accepted the job, and there is every indication that my great-grandfather took part in the process. The arguments in defense of producing the list, in Bialystok and elsewhere, were pragmatic: the killing was going to occur anyway; by cooperating, the Judenrat could try to reduce the number of people the Nazis were planning to kill (in Bialystok, this worked, though in the end the ghetto, like all other ghettos, was “liquidated”); by compiling the lists, the Judenrat could prevent random killing, instead choosing to sacrifice those who were already near death from disease or starvation. These were strong arguments. There is always a strong argument.


We cannot know what political strategy, if any, can be effective in containing, rather than abetting, the threat that a Trump administration now poses to some of our most fundamental democratic principles. But we can know what is right. What separates Americans in 2016 from Europeans in the 1940s and 1950s is a little bit of historical time but a whole lot of historical knowledge. We know what my great-grandfather did not know: that the people who wanted to keep the people fed ended up compiling lists of their neighbors to be killed. That they had a rationale for doing so. And also, that one of the greatest thinkers of their age judged their actions as harshly as they could be judged.

Armed with that knowledge, or burdened with that legacy, we have a slight chance of making better choices. As Trump torpedoes into the presidency, we need to shift from realist to moral reasoning. That would mean, at minimum, thinking about the right thing to do, now and in the imaginable future. It is also a good idea to have a trusted friend capable of reminding you when you are about to lose your sense of right and wrong.

She is right, whether there are realistic ways to work with Trump, they need to be viewed through a moral lens, and not whether they provide a temporary or minor respite.

Now is not the time to talk about the need to come together, it is the time to talk about right and wrong.

Betsy Devos’ Educational Paradise

Detroit’s privatization of its schools is a complete clusterf%$#, even charter school and voucher advocates find it so.

There is a preponderance of private for profit operators and abysmal results, to the degree that New Orleans is doing an order of magnitude better.

This is largely because of the pernicious effect of the DeVos family donating huge sums of money to short circuit any review or oversight of charter schools and voucher recipients.

Well, now it has reached its logical conclusion, with the state of Michigan arguing that literacy is not a right, and so there can be no review of the catastrophic state of affairs in Detroit:

The State of Michigan wants a federal judge to dismiss a lawsuit seeking to establish a constitutional right to literacy.

“The United States Supreme Court and Michigan courts recognize the importance of literacy,” state lawyers wrote in a response last week to a suit filed on behalf of Detroit school children. “But as important as literacy may be, the United States Supreme Court has unambiguously rejected the claim that public education is a fundamental right under the Constitution. Literacy is a component or particular outcome of education, not a right granted to individuals by the Constitution.”


“The response completely fails to engage with the 136-page complaint’s specific and detailed allegations documenting the extreme and indefensible conditions that deny children access to literacy in Detroit schools: classrooms without books or teachers, sweltering and freezing temperatures, vermin infestations, and buildings that are literally falling apart,” Eidmann said. “Each day that the state chooses to fight this lawsuit is another day of education lost that may never be recovered. Would the state try to wash its hands of this matter if the students suffering were not children of color from low-income families?”

The lawsuit filed Sept. 13 on behalf of seven Detroit schoolchildren claims the State of Michigan has failed to provide them with basic literacy, a foundation of all education and a precursor to active citizenship. It asks the federal courts to order remedies, including “evidence-based literacy reforms,” a systemic approach to instruction and intervention as well as fixes to crumbling Detroit schools.

A shorter version of this is that the State of Michigan is saying that children of minorities do not deserve a proper education.

Props to the Associated Press

They have just updated their definition of “alt-right” to say that it means racist dirtbags:

Recent developments have put the so-called “alt-right” movement in the news. They highlight the need for clarity around use of the term and around some related terms, such as “white nationalism” and “white supremacism.”


“Alt-right” (quotation marks, hyphen and lower case) may be used in quotes or modified as in the “self-described” or “so-called alt-right” in stories discussing what the movement says about itself.

Avoid using the term generically and without definition, however, because it is not well known and the term may exist primarily as a public-relations device to make its supporters’ actual beliefs less clear and more acceptable to a broader audience. In the past we have called such beliefs racist, neo-Nazi or white supremacist.

While the AP’s position on copyright is maximalist and counter-productive, (they act as if fair use excerpting does not exist) this is a very worthwhile update to their standards.

Quote of the Day

The crime-fighting case against cash is overstated. Last year, a risk assessment of money laundering and terrorist financing conducted by the U.K. government found that regulated institutions such as banks (like HSBC) and accountancy service providers (like the Panamanian tax-shelter specialist Mossack Fonseca) posed the highest risk of facilitating the illicit storage or movement of funds. Cash came in a close third, but if we’re going to cite unlawful transactions as a rationale for banning cash, it only makes sense to ban banks and accounting firms first.

Elaine Ou


Rolling some more Olbermann:

She Really Needs to Go to Jail

We get some more stories about Theranos, and it sounds more like a Mafia family than it does a medical testing business:

If you think your Thanksgiving dinner conversation will be awkward and stressful this year, just be glad you and your family weren’t involved with Theranos.

As the once highly regarded blood-testing company crumbles under technological scandals and regulatory sanctions, the death toll of relationships among neighbors, friends, families, and long-standing partners is mounting. With lawsuits, investigative reports, and new accounts from a whistleblower, the company’s culture and inner-workings—which Theranos worked hard to obfuscate—are finally becoming clear. And what’s emerged are patterns of dishonesty, callousness, and litigiousness—if not outright belligerence.

Perhaps most startling of the recent revelations is the identity and family drama of one Theranos whistleblower: Tyler Shultz, grandson of George Shultz, the former secretary of state, who also happens to be a Theranos advisor. An exposé by The Wall Street Journal lays out how in the course of eight months, Tyler Shultz went from a bright-eyed Theranos employee to disgruntled whistleblower, personally disparaged by Theranos’ then-president and desperately trying to convince his grandfather to wash his hands of the doomed company.

Fresh out of college, Tyler Shultz started working with Theranos’ assay validation team in 2013, which was in charge of monitoring the precision of its blood test results. He noted wild inaccuracies on some tests before being moved to the company’s production team, where he witnessed the company’s blood testing machines failing quality controls. Both issues were flagged years later in federal inspection reports, validating Shultz’s allegations. But at the time, then-president Sunny Balwani had pressured employees to ignore the problems, Shultz said. (Balwani stepped down from the company earlier this year and was banned by federal regulators from running a clinical lab for two years.) Nevertheless, Tyler Shultz e-mailed his findings and concerns directly to Elizabeth Holmes, the company’s founder and CEO.

Days later, Shultz got a message back—from Balwani. “We saw your email to Elizabeth,” Balwani wrote. “Before I get into specifics, let me share with you that had this email come from anyone else in the company, I would have already held them accountable for the arrogant and patronizing tone and reckless comments.” He went on to belittle Shultz’s intelligence and understanding of the company’s technology. “The only reason I have taken so much time away from work to address this personally is because you are Mr. Shultz’s grandson,” Balwani added.

Shultz quit Theranos that day, intending to leave the professional drama behind. However, it was just the start of his family drama. It seems that Holmes called up the elder Shultz directly to inform him of his grandson’s actions and threatened that his grandson would “lose” if he pursued the allegations. While Tyler Shultz was still gathering his things to leave Theranos, his mother called and implored him to stop “whatever you’re about to do!”

After that, Shultz said his relationship with his grandfather became strained—and remains that way. Holmes made a surprising and uncomfortable appearance at his grandfather’s house the following Thanksgiving. She also attended his subsequent 95th birthday. Tyler Shultz did not. Meanwhile, the younger Shultz says Theranos has had him followed by private investigators and pressured by lawyers.

It gets far worse from there.

This is a company that knew that it was peddling snake oil, and used intimidation and a culture of fear to  suppress the truth.

This isn’t just a bunch of people who believed their own PR.  This is conscious deliberate fraud, and Holmes and Balwani need to be in the dock.