Links 5/2/2021

Air Force debuts new mission statement: ‘Airpower in 30 minutes or it’s free’ Duffelblog

Novels and Novellas and Tomes, Oh My! Countercraft

Sanctimony Literature Liberties

PETER LORRE AND SYDNEY GREENSTREET: FILM NOIR’S GREATEST ODD COUPLE Crime Reads. A fun read for anyone as fond as I am of Greenstreet, Lorre, Eric Ambler, and Istanbul.


With Great Demographics Comes Great Power Foreign Affairs. An insane argument, when one considers that the best way to minimise one’s carbon footprint is to have fewer children.

More Than 90 New Airlines Are Launching in 2021. They Say It’s the Perfect Time. WSJ

Nasa astronauts splash-land on Earth in SpaceX capsule after ISS mission BBC

Understanding discontinuance among California’s electric vehicle owners Nature Energy


Sports Desk

Racing colors! Medina Spirit wins the Kentucky Derby in front of 45K jubilant fans at a sun drenched Churchill Downs eight months after being run without spectators due to COVID Daily Mail


COVID-19 surges in Oregon, sickening younger adults and forcing a return to restrictions LA Times

France to Open to Vaccinated Travelers on June 9 Afar

Stranded abroad, Australians lodge UN petition against government for ‘right to return home’  France 24

Brazil Senate to Probe Bolsonaro Government’s (Mis)Steps on COVID-19 Pandemic The Wire

Britain risks cementing in power a corrupt and incompetent government in undeserved gratitude for the vaccine Independent. Patrick Cockburn.

Do public health officials need to be political activists? A fight over an HIV crisis renews the question Stat


Dr Anthony S Fauci on India’s Covid Crisis: ‘Shut down the country for a few weeks…hang in there, take care of each other, we’ll get to a normal’ Indian Express

Govt to set up temporary hospitals with 10,000 oxygenated beds near industrial units Times of India .

India hits new grim record with 3,689 COVID-19 deaths in one day Al Jazeera

India’s Covid-19 Crisis Shakes Modi’s Image of Strength NYT

‘There Are Queues for Oxygen and Outside Crematorium, but PM Modi Is Obsessed With Saving His Image’ The Wire

Covid-19: In their desperate search for oxygen and medicines, Indians are falling for online scams Scroll

UK-Based NRI Doctors Pledge Free Online Assistance to Professionals Fighting COVID in India The Wire

Complacency and Government Failures Fueled India’s COVID Disaster Der Spiegel

The unmaking of India FT. Not paywalled.

Modi Fiddles While India Burns Foreign Policy

Out of Oxygen London Review of Books

Youth Sought Oxygen for Grandfather via Tweet, UP Police File Criminal Case Against Him The Wire

Corona in Cow Land – India Critical Counterpunch

Maharashtra’s Prisons Are Feeling the Brunt of a Crisis That Could Have Been Averted The Wire

Adar Poonawalla: ‘Aggression over Covid vaccines is overwhelming . . . Everyone expects to get theirs first’ The Times

Why Covid-19 is Running Amok in India Consortium News. Jayati Ghosh.

May Day 2021: What Has (Not) Changed Since the Pandemic Ravaged Livelihoods of Workers The Wire


The Covid-19 Vaccine Club: How the World’s Biggest Producers Depend on Each Other WSJ Share the Intellectual Property on COVID-19 Project Syndicate. Jeffrey Sachs.

Pressure grows on world leaders to scrap patent protections for Covid-19 vaccines South China Morning Post

A vaccine patent waiver that might be worth a shot FT


Is the Abandonment of Guest Worker COVID Protections a Taste of Things to Come? Capital & Main

The Story Behind Your Salad: Farmworkers, Covid-19, and a Dangerous Commute The Nation

New York Eviction Moratorium Expected to be Extended to August 31 The City

Class Warfare

New York requires $15 broadband for poor people, promptly gets sued by ISPs Ars Technica

Biden Administration

Scoop: Biden won’t reverse Trump’s Western Sahara move, U.S. tells Morocco Axios

The Mystery of Merrick Garland New Republic


Kissinger warns of ‘colossal’ dangers in US-China tensions France 24

Waste Watch

Plastic pollution: Chinese scientists identify polythene-eating bacteria South China Morning Post

Trump Transition

Trump allies worry Giuliani raid sent ‘strong message’ to ex-President’s inner circle CNN

Fake News: New York Times, WaPo, NBC forced to retract false claims about Giuliani NY Post

Washington Post, New York Times, and NBC News retract reports on Giuliani CNN

Big Brother IS Watching You Watch

FISA And The Still Too Secret Police American Conservative


Saudi Crown Prince’s Vision for Neom, a Desert City-State, Tests His Builders WSJ

Afghan Blast on Eve of U.S. Pullout Deadline Kills at Least 27 NYT

Western Drought

California trucks salmon to Pacific; low river levels blamed AP

Facing a Colorado River shortage, Arizona prepares for the pain of water cutbacks AZ Central

Grenfell Tower


The Supremes

Court watchers buzz about Breyer’s possible retirement The Hill

Satyajit Ray Birth Centenary

Satyajit Ray — the creative genius The Hindu Business Line. Today is the centenary of the birth of the great filmmaker, Satyajit Ray.

Satyajit at 100: A Guide to the Maestro The Daily Star

Ray, a hundred years on: This film auteur gave us a spectacular oeuvre which distilled contemporary times Times of India

100 reasons to love Ray: His side characters Mint

How Kolkata’s famous Mohan’s Bookshop lost its battle against the Covid-19 pandemic Scroll

Antidote du Jour (via):

And a bonus video (chuck l):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. fresno dan

    PETER LORRE AND SYDNEY GREENSTREET: FILM NOIR’S GREATEST ODD COUPLE Crime Reads. A fun read for anyone as fond as I am of Greenstreet, Lorre, Eric Ambler, and Istanbul.
    Disappointingly, Netflix has few of the Greenstreet/Lorre classics mentioned in the article (and as one wag said of my cable subscription, it consists only of the box – no classic movie channels for me). I just happened to see a Hitchcock TV episode that had Lorre circa ?62? a week or so ago and Lorre did not look good in it health wise. Still, the episode where he plays a man who engages in a wager with Steve McQueen for McQueen’s finger is a role that was perfect for Lorre.
    Is there really any present movie stars that even approach the unusual and uniqueness of Greenstreet and Lorre and the stories they were in?

    1. Eustache de Saint Pierre

      A lot of films featuring Greenstreet, Lorre & Bogart were shown on UK TV during the 70’s, but I think that my all time favourite featuring Lorre in a great double act with Raymond Massey in Arsenic & Old Lace.

      We kids loved him whatever he was in, but I don’t reckon we would have appreciated him as he was in M, which I watched as an adult.

    2. The Rev Kev

      Sydney Greenstreet knew how to radiate menace and he gave an excellent performance in “The Maltese Falcon.” Unlike a lot of modern movie characters, there was nothing two-dimensional in his performance and although outwardly jovial and polite, you always had an inkling of a violent interior just below the surface- (3:56 mins)

    3. Carolinian

      Those Warner Brothers films like Maltese Falcon are owned by TCM and parent.

    4. Pelham

      I saw that Hitchcock episode, too. McQueen’s wife at the time was in it as well. It was a real gem and happened to capture the essence of both Lorre and McQueen, as well as Hitchcock, in a simple story with tense calculations and consequences.

      As for the question you pose, I believe we are richer in wonderfully versatile and daring actors today — Ralph Fiennes and Anthony Hopkins come to mind, even Brad Pitt — but as for character actors comparable to Greenstreet and Lorre, I’m not so sure. How about Steve Buscemi and Christopher Walken?

      1. fresno dan

        May 2, 2021 at 12:54 pm
        First, thanks for the info about the female lead being McQueen’s wife – I did not know that. Decades before I even knew or had seen the Hitchcock episode, I saw the same story – presented, IIRC, on Night Gallery (circa 1974 or thereabouts). The only actor from that version I remember was Anjelica Huston. Of course, it has been so long, I don’t remember any details, other than the big revelatory scene where Huston exposes her hand – undoubtedly why I remembered a TV episode from 45 or more years ago. I would love to see the two episodes back to back to compare and contrast.

    5. Geraniumgirl

      In about 1964, probably not long before his death, I saw Peter Lorre at the grand opening of a small shopping mall in Omaha, NE. I was only 19 at the time and attended the grand opening with my mom. We were among a very small smattering of people who showed up. Given that I was a big fan of Peter Lorre, I felt horrible about the indignity the poor man was subjected to by being there. Could his means have been reduced to the point where he had to take gigs like that? Lorre looked to be in poor health and was quite portly. It was one of the saddest experiences of my life.

    6. Cynthia

      A much lesser known film noir that Peter Lorre was in is entitled “The Chase” (1946). I highly recommend it. You can also watch it for free on the Russian site,, as well as many other films from the classic era of American filmmaking.

      Francis Lederer is another actor who also was exceptionally good at playing sinister roles, but was much better looking than Lorre. I particularly liked him in an even lesser known noir film entitled “Million Dollar Weekend”(1948), which can also be viewed for free on

      Another actor of the same era who was equality good at playing sinister roles was Zachery Scott. He was perhaps even better looking than Francis Lederer. His deep-set eyes is what gave him an edge when it came to playing bad guys. He is most famous for playing opposite Joan Crawford in “Mildred Pierce” (1945). He played an even more sinister role in another film noir entitled “Ruthless” 1948. However, unlike Lederer and especially Lorre, he was very good at playing good guys. He can see the good guy side of him in two films that I highly recommend. The first one I’ll mention is King Vidor’s 1951 drama film “Lightning Strikes Twice.” He played a rather small role in this film, but you can immediately tell that he was just as good at playing a good guy as he was at playing a bad one. The other film that he was in that I’ll mention here is “Shadow on the Wall.” This 1950 psychological thriller is well worth watching just to see Nancy Reagan play a psychiatrist, which she was surprisingly good at doing.

      1. John Anthony La Pietra

        And of course Zachary Scott worked with the other two when he had the title role in “The Mask of Dimitrios”.

  2. fresno dan

    FISA And The Still Too Secret Police American Conservative

    In 2008, after the George W. Bush administration’s pervasive illegal warrantless wiretaps were exposed, Congress responded by enacting FISA amendments that formally entitled the National Security Agency to vacuum up mass amounts of emails and other communication, a swath of which is provided to the FBI. In 2018, the FISA court slammed the FBI for abusing that database with warrantless searches that violated Americans’ rights. In lieu of obeying FISA, the FBI created a new Office of Internal Audit. Deja vu! Back in 2007, FBI agents were caught massively violating the Patriot Act by using National Security Letters to conduct thousands of illegal searches on Americans’ personal data. Sen. Richard Durbin (D-Ill.) declared that an Inspector General report on the abusive searches “confirms the American people’s worst fears about the Patriot Act.” FBI chief Robert Mueller responded by creating a new Office of Integrity and Compliance as “another important step toward ensuring we fulfill our mission with an unswerving commitment to the rule of law.” Be still my beating heart!
    At this point, Americans know only the abuses that the FBI chose to disclose to FISA judges. We have no idea how many other perhaps worse abuses may have occurred. For a hundred years, the FBI has buttressed its power by keeping a lid on its crimes. Unfortunately, the FISA Court has become nothing but Deep State window dressing—a facade giving the illusion that government is under the law.
    The FBI FISA frauds profoundly disrupted American politics for years and the din of belatedly debunked accusations of Trump colluding with Russia swayed plenty of votes in the 2018 midterms and the 2020 presidential election. But for the chief FISA judge, nothing matters except the plight of an FBI employee who lost his job after gross misconduct. This is the stark baseline Americans should remember when politicians, political appointees, and judges promise to protect them from future FBI abuses.
    The whole article just shows that all the yammering about constitutional rights is just sheer performance art, and makes every movie that Greenstreet and Lorre appear in about a million times closer to reality than anything any US government official (including and especially JUDGES) says about rule of law.

    1. Alfred

      What is actually acted upon seems personal and close to home, like Dubya’s beef about his Daddy and Saddam. And Biden and Hunter and Ukraine and Giuliani, although they swear it’s not. I noticed Trump slid along until he went after Biden, and The Current House Speaker was galvanized to impeach at last.

      1. Carolinian

        Trump’s people went after Biden via the web and a few friendly outlets, not using the Department of Justice as their catspaw. The current Dems are using a toady MSM as cover for some transgressive attitudes toward civil liberties. Selective enforcement of laws like FARA that are never enforced would be an example. They think a scaffolding of self righteousness can justify almost any behavior including snap impeachment.

        1. Alfred

          It’s not like Trump did not deserve to get be impeached a lot sooner by Repub own standards when applied to Dems. There just was no Dem incentive until a lion of the party was attacked. It got personal.

          1. Carolinian

            by Repub own standards

            It’s not a football match and the fake competition between team Repub and team Dem is just so much noise. By wasting all of our time on two unjustified impeachments the Dems showed why they are no more fit to govern than their competition and that’s by “Dem own standards” (the quite justified criticism of the frivolous Clinton impeachment).

            The Dems after all claim to be the sensible ones and the voice of the people against the voice of the plutocrats–something the Repubs haven’t tried very hard to disguise. The current turn to authoritarianism by the Dems could be seen as the last gasp of “a republic if you can keep it.”

    2. km

      FISA and the FISA courts are a flat violation of the Fourth and Fifth Amendments, and Lord knows what else besides.

      That the courts have not called a spade a spade simply shows that unless the powerful can be made to follow it, even to their detriment, law is but words on paper.

  3. fresno dan

    Washington Post, New York Times, and NBC News retract reports on Giuliani CNN
    WP and NYT News – stories by people about republicans that they don’t like that generally are
    A – totally false
    B – substantially false
    C – significantly false
    D – partially false
    E – the names are usually spelled correctly…

    1. Pat

      Sadly I think we could rewrite that to:
      “Stories by people about Democrats and Republicans they like are generally”.

      Nothing you don’t know but it is time to admit that the majority of our “news” media reports tend to false whether they tell us something “lauding and positive” or “critical and derogatory” as they seek to manipulate the public not inform them.

      1. fresno dan

        May 2, 2021 at 9:03 am
        I agree – I certainly didn’t mean to imply that FOX is providing a dispassionate, objective dose of daily reality, but as the article was specifically about NYT & WP (and NBC) I phrased it that way.
        And I think just as the truth of the matter is that congress is bipartisan on most issues (terrorism, war in the middle east, eviscerations’ of any remaining constitutional rights, empowerment and protection of the rich, etcetera, the media for all the ostensible disagreement between FOX and the “liberal” media is nothing more than professional wrestling fights – all fake, to distract from the fact that the media will never ever seriously investigate the rich, particularly the media oligarchs.

    2. km

      The retraction came faster than usual this time, but the damage already is done.

      Those who want to believe will believe.

  4. Terry Flynn

    Northern Independence Party in UK interestingly draws (for now) a southern border that runs along the northern border of Nottinghamshire. I “get it” but as the New Left Review points out, there’s a whole lot of deprivation and unrest across the Midlands (incorporating a lot of the infamous “Red Wall”). I was shopping for my parents just now. Dad told me when I returned that a Conservative canvasser called (for the local elections here Thursday). THAT hasn’t happened since 1997 when this formerly true blue suburb went solidly Labour and never changed back. Our local (Labour) councillor is deputy leader of the county council and if the Tories are bothering to canvass here again for local elections, Labour really are in trouble. (Tories DID canvass at last GENERAL election – alerting me to a Westminster upset, which duly happened.)

    Re unrest. There’s an unscientific but interesting ranking done of cr*ppest cities in UK done that I see mentioned occasionally online. Nottingham a couple of years ago jumped up 20-odd places from being in bottom 10. Some wag made a comment that people have upgraded it from “Shottingham” and we’re merely “Knifingham” now. Of course we were one of the first to have race riots, were notorious for unrest during the Chartist uprisings.

    The county’s schizophrenic nature was most apparent in late 1980s. After Labour began to recover, the county council was perfectly split between Labour and the Conservatives with the casting vote coming from our local councillor, a Communist Party councillor. Of course he wasn’t proper Communist. He switched to Green when Communism fell and we kept electing him. He kept both parties on their toes and fought for us and things that are very old fashioned in today’s UK political scene. Thursday will be interesting.

    1. Eustache de Saint Pierre

      I wonder how Stoke figures in that rating & I would not bother visiting at all but for my Mother & Sister living there. Perhaps like intermittently watching a child grow on my occasional visits I have seen the changes, which largely appear to have gone unnoticed by those who don’t appear to be fully aware of the slow alterations of their always familiar.

      I used to visit a Moss Side ( Manchester ) shopping centre back in the late 70’s, when public transport was cheap, to visit a Jamaican guys record shop for Reggae imports as I was a DJ at a pub with a clientele of West Indians, Gays, Asians & natives, such as myself. The whole area including the mall was very rundown with the post office & the off license all caged up with many vacant outlets. I never thought at that time that much of my old hometown would eventually become pretty much the same.

      BTW – it also had an entrance fee by way of me diplomatically buying a copy of Socialist worker.

      1. Terry Flynn

        From memory Stoke also fares badly. I came across the site (again) most recently when seeking a joke to link the “cat on the train roof” recent story with the cat scaring the fox story – in Dudley – (both antidotes on here). I remembered that Jasper Carrott did amazing TV stand-up routines about Dudley in the 1980s. All the “official” ones have been scrubbed from YouTube and (whaddya know) he restarted touring etc a few years ago, kicking off in native Dudley, so draw your own conclusions….

        “Where did it all go right? Growing up normal in the 70s” is a great book for shedding light on why “official accounts” of 1970s UK are wide of the mark. On the other hand I remember the collapse in the 1980s and not dissimilar stories to yours. Also like you I had the benefit of not living continuously here so the changes have been shocking. Parents moving up the ladder (and to posher bit of Nottingham) seems merely to be the hedonic treadmill. No wonder the Tories are targetting Labour council members who seem very “Starmerish”.

        The council won’t take many Labour losses to go from “no overall control” (though led by coalition of Tories plus “former-Labour rebels who hate Westminster”) to “Tory gain”.

        1. Eustache de Saint Pierre

          Yes, I liked Jasper – 2 cars in the drive & bugger all in the fridge etc & I often got stuck with nutters on buses.

          Must checkout the local rag for the politics, but last time I took any notice the now market ghost town I lived in which is stuck on the side of Stoke’s rear end finally turned Tory. Something called Monkey Dust appears to be the current thing in the now misnamed Potteries – the plentiful mugshots illustrate despair.

        2. chuck roast

          “…hedonic treadmill.” May I use that line? It accurately describes the housing market around here.

      2. skk

        Two years ago, I rented a canal narrow-boat and traveled the Trent and Mersey Canal from near the Waterworld water park in Stoke down to Little Stoke and back over a long weekend. One thing about canals in industrial areas, you certainly get the see the backside of those areas.

        1. Eustache de Saint Pierre

          Perhaps strangely enough Thatcher’s community employment programs did a lot to improve the old Industrial ruin – making slag heaps into parkland, adding decent pathways & cleaning up the canals, old tile works, coalmines & flooded marlholes which were all dangerous but fun to play in when I was a kid.

          The Blair brand added a garden festival which was supposed to light up the dirty old town while the outsourcing increased, since then basically totally abandoned by both versions of the Neoliberal s*** sandwich.

          1. PlutoniumKun

            I remember that well, I moved to the Midlands in the 1990’s and used to do voluntary conservation work on the weekends. As it was quickly realised that a lot of beautiful natural areas were once industrial waste tips, it was standard to do a little desktop research before going and doing any digging or cutting trees. I was amazed at how much open space in the West Midlands, from formal victorian parts to more recent urban wildlife parks had invariably been industrial scars – colliery spoil heaps, waste tips, etc.

            Of course, it was all about putting bandaid on an amputation, but there was quite a bit of money floating about then for various restoration projects – I developed a fascination for the canals and spent a lot of time cycling seemingly long forgotten towpaths, seeing what was essentially the usually unseen rear-end of those cities and towns. There were some lovely restoration projects which did at least help to raise those areas profiles, and make some very nice recreation areas, but nothing could replace all those lost jobs.

  5. The Rev Kev

    “India hits new grim record with 3,689 COVID-19 deaths in one day”

    Things are going to get a lot worse for India before they get better. The virus is moving into the smaller villages who do not have access to advanced medical centers much less oxygen bottles. Meanwhile, the sheer number of people being cremated has resulted in permission being given to chop down trees in city parks for wood for those cremations. I would not be surprised if in the coming months that they will have to resort to mass graves to take care of those bodies to be cremated later when the pressure is finally off-

  6. Alfred

    Covid–I generally try to do my laundry on the occasional at 6:30 a.m. on Sundays at the local laundromat. There are signs about how to do your laundry hygienically, how mask wearing is “please wear,” and how no one is allowed to sit inside and wait for their laundry to finish, and fold your clothes at home. I don’t dry my stuff there, so I am in and out as fast as possible. But this morning the place filled up with mostly retirement-age people wearing masks, some sort of, sitting and standing close together and having a social hour in a 1000 SF space. My town is almost 4000 pop. There were 111 cases in the period 3/5 to 4/28. That’s almost 3% when the State avg is about 1% now. There is a wild range of compliance and taking rules seriously.

    About the Dem establishment undermining Bernie–What was it Shillary said, something like “nobody likes him.” I am grateful all the time he does not give a sh*t whether those jerks like him or not. And when they talk about Repub obstructionism, they need to take a hard look in the mirror.

    1. tegnost

      re bernie…a brief glance at the responses to that tweet restored my faith the the current rulers can’t not crash it. Everything bernie describes will be much worse by the end of summer. How many black kids will be shot? How many mass murders? How many more homeless/hopeless will there be?
      But yet the yuppies congratulate themselves…

      1. chris

        I suppose we shouldn’t be surprised that Ibram X. Kendi is considered required reading but Adolph Reed is not :/

      2. QuicksilverMessenger

        Yes, but specifically to the q anon stuff related to poverty- The demographics seem to show (and this has been gone over here at NC) that they are emphatically not poverty stricken, but instead small business owners, doctors, people with some means, etc.

        1. Pelham

          A lot of them are people of some means who have also suffered a severe or crippling financial setback through no fault of their own. Ashli Babbitt, the slain Jan. 6 “insurrectionist,” had suffered several in succession. The election may not have been rigged, but the economy has been for a very long time.

          Separately, I believe there have been two surveys of Qanon believers that have found the higher their level of education, the more like they are to believe in Q. So those with master’s and doctorates the most likely, followed by those with 4-year degrees, and the least inclined to believe are those with high school diplomas or less.

          Of course, this could simply be a function of more widespread broadband access among the more educated. Then again, maybe not. Separate research has shown that more highly educated people are more likely to insist on being right about their convictions even when they’re proved to be wrong, while those with less education tend to be more open to admitting their mistakes. (This is why, if I were president, I would be sure to include a salting of high-school grads in my administration, if nothing else to serve as a brake on inflated egghead egos.)

          1. km

            Cognitive dissonance is more common among the educated, because so much of education and knowledge work consists of symbol manipulation.

            In other words, in rationalizing.

            1. Phillip Cross

              As your position on one issue predicts your position on an increasing number of other issues, the probability you’re a boring & unthinking ideologue approaches 100%, and the probability you just happen to uniformly hold the correct/most noble/moral position approaches zero.

              1. JBird4049

                More of American education seems to be of cranking out well trained clerks instead of well educated scholars. It is easy to appear to be teaching the latter while teaching the former.

                Really, what a good college education, even that of a very good high school, true importance is in how to learn and think. Being given the means to become increasingly wise throughout one’s life.

        2. tegnost

          I agree that’s true. It shows what for me is the real threat of bernie is his ability to speak for the belly of the beast. One could argue for convenience that 1/3 of the population are true believer neoliberal/cons who benefit from the grift, and bring along with them their respective tribes, progressives for the left, small c conservatives for the right. Bernie can unite those two groups and that top third does not like that idea. While the riot crowd was real estate, contractors and typical of what would once have been upper middle class but is no longer. It takes a lot more money to be even middle class, upper middle is stratospheric and as we all know upper class is on mars.

          1. Alfred

            Yes, showing common ground is Bernie’s strength, and IMO the PMC uses sistence on “racism” to keep people from seeing they are all being played the same way. Retaining the power of who gets the bennies and approval, and ensuring that nobody is going to want to trust each other. And some people are happy to scream about how history has cheated them. And most people living now had not one thing to do with that. My old South Chicago neighborhood became integrated, and when we went to visit the elderly Polish friends who still lived there, the black neighbors were looking in on them every day to make sure they were OK. There was no resentment, there was community. Yeah, the “top third” hate that.

        3. Bill Smith

          Are the people who went into the Capitol and have been arrested, being used as a representative sample of the much, much larger population that Sanders is talking about?

          That sample is not representative of the population.

          1. Procopius

            Bill Smith

            That sample is not representative of the population.

            Actually, it may be. The claim that Trump’s base is rural, low educated, and poor is false and has been pushed by the MSM to obscure the reality. In 2016 the median income of Trump voters was $70,000, well above median family income in America. Or am I being too credulous, again? I saw elsewhere the claim that 1/3 of Trump voters had incomes above $100,000, 1/3 had between $50,000 and $100,000, and only 1/3 had less than $50,000. I see almost all posters at some other blogs, who appear to be “centrist” Democrats, calling the Trump base derogatory names. That seems to be tribal identification, not anything based on reality.

  7. Noone from Nowheresville

    It seems Minnesota is not that different in the fee department after all. funny, how the fed can add $4 trillion directly to its balance sheet but government needs to fund basic justice services via feeding off the poor. policy decisions… they still burn

    Minnesota’s criminal justice fees often fall hardest on poor. State, local leaders among growing number debating how to end dependence on criminal justice system fees and surcharges. By Jessie Van Berkel Star Tribune April 27, 2021 — 12:22pm

    Fees, surcharges and fines are woven into Minnesota’s criminal justice system. They are used to punish people and cover state and local government expenses. They can also indebt the poorest Minnesotans to the state, disproportionately burden people of color and ensnare people in the criminal justice system just as they are hoping to leave it.
    How fees compound a ticket

    A $30 fine for expired car tabs can quickly balloon as a surcharge and law library fee are automatically added and late fees are assessed.

    Minnesota Judicial Branch

    Graphic by C.J. Sinner, Star Tribune

    A $30 fine for expired vehicle tabs automatically balloons to as much as $120 with a state surcharge and fee to support law libraries. If someone can’t pay right away, a late penalty is added.

    There’s a fee to be booked into some jails. Fees to be on probation, electronically monitored at home or released from jail to work during the day. A fee for court-ordered chemical dependency treatment. And while Americans have the constitutional right to an attorney, there’s still a copay for a public defender.

    1. Jerri-Lynn Scofield Post author

      Thanks – I’ll shortly be posting my hot take on today’s state election results, the most signfifacnt of which is West Bengal’s. I’ve been checking in with friends on the ground in Kolkata, where current chief minister Mamata Banerjee comfortably retained power. There’s both more and less here than meets the eye, particularly as to the long-term implications for Modi and the BJP. Please check back later this a.m. for my post.

    1. a different chris

      More than 4 in 5.

      Yeah this blog is for sure *not* run by gearheads!!! That statistic is freaking awesome. The best repeat rate, model-wise is <59% (Accord, Ram Truck, a few others).

      People grow in and out of different modes of transformation. But you really don't have much place to move in electric or hybrids – suddenly seemingly less in hybrids? – now. You have an Accord and need a Minivan? You move. You have a Tesla and need a Minivan? Apparently you decide no way you are gonna admit you need a minivan.

  8. Carolinian

    Cool to see that Satyajit Ray is now a category (at least for today). I’ve lost much respect for Francois Truffaut after reading that he pooh poohed Pather Panchali.

    1. Mme Generalist

      Yeah. Bret Weinstein and Heather Heying covered this on their Darkhorse Podcast yesterday. If this proves to be true, the implications regarding the current crop of vaccines is chilling.

      I can’t find any sign of reporting on this. Have you seen anything?

      1. Lee

        I just searched “covid spike proteins may cause damage” and got a lengthy list of links, including those that reference the study on genetically modified mice showing the spike protein by itself causes serious tissue damage. How reliable these sources are and how definitive the referenced study might be, I don’t know. But the possible implications are unsettling. I and most people I know have been vaccinated and so far nobody has keeled over. We continue as always, one day at a time with fingers permanently crossed.

        1. Mme Generalist

          Yes, I searched the title of the article and saw many links, but none were to news media outlets. I find that disturbing. We’ll see if any coverage happens in the coming days…

          1. a better tomorrow

            Response by Uri Manor, one of the co-authors of the paper, on Twitter as to the implications of the research to covid vaccines:


            i’m going to give a full response asap. but quickly for the record:
            1) the (relatively) small amount of spike protein produced by the mRNA vaccine would not be nearly enough to do any damage
            2) i happily got the mRNA vaccine, FWIW
            3) i encourage everyone to get it

            also: one of many great things about the mRNA vaccine is unlike injecting people with Spike protein to circulate all over (still at waaaay lower concentration than that needed to cause damage), the mRNA-produced Spike is extremely localized. brilliant!

            thanks for the heads up. it’s quite the mind f*^* to see our hard work twisted in support of a narrative/group i would never want to be associated with (to put it lightly)

      2. QuicksilverMessenger

        So what are we saying here? They tell us the vaccines are 90% effective (or something like that depending on which one) but does this mean they are pointless?

        1. Mme Generalist

          If the study’s findings prove to be true in humans, it would mean that the vaccines are spike protein vectors that will produce disease of unpredictable severity in an unknown number of recipients. I think that would make them much worse than merely pointless.

          1. Tom collins' Moscow Mule

            Or, colloquially, “you pays your money and you takes your choice/chance.” As the only available choices are between that of Scylla and Charybdis.

            There are no “guarantees” and there is nothing that is “risk free”. Even though, the interrogative bleatings from the mandarins in charge continue to focus on vaccine hesitancy, or resistance and the whys and wherefores that remain veiled publicly, thus far.

            As noted above, perhaps there are meaningful reasons for such vaccine resistance and/or hesitancy, because the public is long familiar with the standard operating procedure of those in power, that is, “When things get serious,” he said, “you have to know how to lie.”

            The long term natural experiment is only beginning, it seems. Because, as noted above, and below,

            “Vaccines that introduce the spike protein into our body to elicit virus-neutralizing antibodies are currently being developed. In this article, we note that human host cells sensitively respond to the spike protein to elicit cell signaling. Thus, it is important to be aware that the spike protein produced by the new COVID-19 vaccines may also affect the host cells. We should monitor the long-term consequences of these vaccines carefully, especially when they are administered to otherwise healthy individuals. Further investigations on the effects of the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein on human cells and appropriate experimental animal models are warranted.”

            “SARS-CoV-2 Spike Protein Elicits Cell Signaling in Human Host Cells: Implications for Possible Consequences of COVID-19 Vaccines”


            As always, choose wisely, based upon large quantities of good quality, up to date, and unbiased information.

            1. rowlf

              I’ve been put off by the “Don’t think about it, don’t question it, just do as you’re told” push in the media and by people to get everyone vaccinated. I have a creepy feeling I am seeing a repeat of the 2003 Bush administration’s Iraq Invasion propaganda campaign, where there was a fast rush in all media and resistance was not tolerated.

              1. Cuibono

                i too wonder if this doesn’t put off a lot of people, But i suspect social approbation is pretty strong motivator

            2. Anonapet

              Except I smell a good deal of “Let’s you and him fight get vaccinated.”

          2. TroyIA

            As far as the mRNA vaccines are concerned the spike protein that is produced is attached to the surface of the deltoid muscle cell rather than floating around in the bloodstream. The risk of the spike breaking loose and causing damage similar to an actual infection is basically zero.

            1. Yves Smith

              Please don’t make shit up. You don’t even have the basics right. From KLG who is a microbiologist:

              The spike protein from mRNA vaccines is produced inside cells that the nanoparticle delivers the vaccine to. I never asked an immunologist colleague for more details. But the important players are antigen presenting cells, and that is how the immune system detects the spike protein and begins its response. The whole spike protein is not presented on the surface of these cells, only small fragments that contain epitopes (about 7 amino acids IIRC).

          3. Jack Parsons

            The number so far are that almost nobody vaxed dies in a hospital within the time frames of post-vax monitoring. Obviously, these time frames of monitoring are currently very short.

            But, still, the current knowledge is that the vaccines prevent a week-long gasping death. So it’s still worth the risk of longer-term problems.

            1. Tom Collins' Moscow Mule

              “So it’s still worth the risk of longer-term problems.”

              Maybe, maybe not. This current experiment still has a long way to go.

              As an addendum for further reflective consideration:

              Whereas, the purpose of informed consent means that “autonomous decisions, decisions based on full, accessible information and without coercion.” has been completely satisfied. If that doctrine is not meticulously adhered to, an entire range of potential spillovers is the likely end result, at both the personal level and the larger social/cultural level. And where, cost/benefit analysis means that the entire range of costs and benefits have been considered both honestly and transparently, with the eyes of everyone involved, fully wide open. Noting carefully that:

              1. “Due to the inadequate safety testing of several toxic stimuli in the past (including vaccines), it remains uncertain as to whether a number of diseases currently affecting humanity may be due in part to the actions of our predecessors passed on to us through transgenerational effects. It is uncertain as to whether any of the drugs, vaccines, foods or radiation exposures of our predecessors, which were not tested for transgenerational effects, are adversely affecting human life at present. Of note, the question remains whether humanity is currently willing to pass on potential devastating diseases to future generations due to the present need for the speedy development of a vaccine, bypassing adequate long-term and transgenerational safety testing.”

              2. “In the present political environment, there is the potential that the majority of the population could be required to be vaccinated, even those demographics that were not vulnerable to the severe effects of COVID-19, and particularly those in the youngest demographic. The potential adverse consequences of such a mass inoculation with a vaccine not adequately tested for mid- and long-term adverse effects could be substantial.”

              “COVID-19 vaccine safety”


        2. Lee

          As far as I know, there are only a vanishingly small number of acute reactions to the vaccine. As to its long term effects, that is yet to be determined.

          As to the effects of exposure to the virus however, one need only follow the news, assuming that with all its faults, it is more rather than less objectively reflecting the true nature and extant of the pandemic. It would seem that the least worst option for most would be to take one’s chances with the jab.

    2. Jeremy Grimm

      Thanks for the link. Source for an open access version of the journal article your link reports on — Read article for free, from open access legal sources, via Unpaywall:
      NOTE: There were corrections to this early version of the journal article. I don’t know what the corrections were.

      With Mme Generalist this news along with the link the other day leaves me wondering about the various vaccines and what long term impacts they might have if the spike protein — whether alone or attached to virus particles live or dead — seems to do bad things.

      1. Lee

        So, assuming that over time it will be almost impossible to avoid exposure the virus, the question might boil down to: How do you want your spike protein served, with or without virus, by aerosol or needle?

        1. Anonapet

          I’ll take (have taken?) mine by aerosol since there’s at least a chance that way that the spike will only affect my lungs and not my entire body via my bloodstream via a shot.

          Interesting times in so many ways …

        2. Jeremy Grimm

          The mRNA and DNA technologies both focused in on the spike protein, but I recall seeing an article suggesting some other part of the Corona virus might be a better choice as an antigen. As I recall the shell of the Corona virus tends to be conserved more than the spike. Also there may be other ways to protect against exposure to the virus — like sane public health policy and some work on remedies other than a panacea vaccine. I would suggest a better question to ask might boil down to: How sane was US public health policy and how wise was the FDA’s EUA agreement and the Government’s waiver of liabilities for the Big Pharma players?

          1. Lee

            “How sane was US public health policy and how wise was the FDA’s EUA agreement and the Government’s waiver of liabilities for the Big Pharma players?”

            Alas, those horses are well out of the barn and galloping across the Rubicon and over the horizon, in the sense that a massive course correction at this point does not seem likely. Improvements you suggest might well happen, but not within a time frame that will have much effect on those now being exposed to and dying from the disease. And the vaccines do appear to be reducing instances of acute disease and deaths. Which, given what we are now witnessing in India, for instance, might be the best that can currently be hoped for.

            1. Jeremy Grimm

              Some of us … old guys like me living in the outback and still hunkered down and continuing to hunker down … can wonder how well “vaccines do appear to be reducing instances of acute disease and deaths” … after allowing for some time … more time than so far.

              I certainly hope the US might fare better than India in dealing with the Corona pandemic for many reasons beyond Modi and the terrible gap between the poor and the ‘not so poor’ in India. If that were the best we could hope for in the US …. I hope. sincerely hope, you and yours will continue (are! ?) faring well … for who could wish ill on any one in this catastrophe.

        3. Cuibono

          well don’t forget about dose and duration too. The vaccines have that in their favor imo

    3. pck

      My understanding was that the mRNA vaccines, at least, delivers RNA to cells, which then make and secrete the spike protein. This secreted protein is then taken up as an antigen by the immune system, and then the immune system generates antibodies against the secreted spike protein that it picked up.

      So, compared to mRNA vaccines, this study is 1) mounting the spike protein on a virus particle (i.e. much bigger than the naked spike protein); 2) applying a bolus dose to cells (as opposed to the slower buildup as your body takes time to synthesize proteins from mRNA); and 3) applying a controlled and specific concentration of the spike protein to cells.

      Regarding point 1, I would think that increasing the size and potentially colocalizing lots of spike proteins might change the effects on the cell because receptor ligand binding can be transient, and if the ligand (the spike protein in this case) is attached to something big, fluctuations in the fluid won’t affect it as much and it can likely bind for longer and more effectively. Therefore, I wonder whether this effect is replicated with truly naked spike protein.

      Regarding point 2, cells have a variety of homeostatic mechanisms to survive in changing environments. These mechanisms, like producing more antioxidants or relying more on glycolysis in stressful conditions, can be overwhelmed by too much too fast. However, cells may respond differently to slower changes in their environment.

      Regarding point 3, I did a quick google scholar search on “how much spike protein is in the blood after vaccination” and all I could find was concentrations of antibodies after vaccination, not spike protein. I wonder how the doses of spike protein used in these experiments compare to levels induced by vaccines and by cases of covid of varying severity. I may have missed it, but I didn’t see the authors say anything like “We used 5 ug/ml psuedovirus to match reported viral titers “.

      I also don’t see vaccines mentioned anywhere in the article, which strikes me as odd if the authors felt that their study had a lot to say about what happens when vaccines are given. Does anyone have any thoughts on these questions, or more info?

        1. Jeremy Grimm

          Good questions … really … … really … … … really?
          Point 1 seems to focus on the concentration of spicules and their proximaties to each other in impacting their impacts.
          “increasing the size and potentially colocalizing lots of spike proteins might change the effects on the cell because receptor ligand binding can be transient” …

          Point 2: Cells “can be overwhelmed by too much too fast” … I buy that … but I need more than that.

          Point 3: spicules in the blood after vaccination … . I too wonder at the many things NOT mentioned or studied about the Corona pandemic. I still wonder at how much is … NOT … studied and commented on. But questions about official studies trouble me less and less as I grow more and more skeptical … of officially sanctioned … and funded … studies and reports ….. on just about any and everything.

        1. Cuibono

          my apologies: that is the lipid levels not the proteins. Sorry i was not more helpful

          1. pck

            Hahaha thanks, I was looking for the protein level and thought I was really oblivious. I appreciate the effort! It is puzzling to me that it’s hard to find. I’d presume you’d want to know the pk of the vaccine nanoparticles, the dynamics of the protein production, and the dynamics of antibody maturation to really characterize the vaccines, but maybe not.

    4. Ghost in the Machine

      This may be why the shots cause more soreness, from more local damage. But, I don’t think we need to be concerned about more widespread damage. I think there are some immune cells that present the antigens to other immune cells to convey information (any immunologists?) and that might be interrupted by spike damage. Not sure about that. The vaccine is not the virus, reproducing around the body causing damage all over potentially. This research, if true, also highlights why you want to defeat the virus as quickly as possible. So vaccination would be important for minimizing damage. I am personally still relieved to have gotten the vaccine. My wife knows a formerly healthy 30s coworker who has trouble breathing a year after infection. Can’t make it through a day of work.

      1. Ghost in the Machine

        I guess what it comes down to, is it is hard to imagine a mechanism of vaccine induced damage/disease that wouldn’t be worse or suffered with higher probability from the actual virus. As other commenters have emphasized, it is a choice about risks. No risk free choice.

        1. Cuibono

          “is it is hard to imagine a mechanism of vaccine induced damage/disease that wouldn’t be worse or suffered with higher probability from the actual virus. ”

          this leaves out the question of whether or not it is either/or of might become and

        2. Lynne

          No, it’s not about choice. Choice implies knowing the dangers. The powers that be have all along chosen to lie about the dangers and risks.

          1. Michaelmas

            Lynne: No, it’s not about choice. Choice implies knowing the dangers. The powers that be have all along chosen to lie about the dangers and risks.

            It is very much about choice.

            Specifically, it’s about the choice between: –

            [A] Doing the work to educate yourself as to what the dangers and risks might be to the best of your ability by reading at least the abstracts of the research papers so as to assess what the scientific truth might be.

            [B] Not educating yourself and lazily bleating like sheep “we wuz lied to” by TPTB, which — given that you rightly assume that TPTB have their vested interests and may be just as ignorant of an evolving, emerging reality as you — is just fatuous and contemptible.

    5. Maritimer

      I believe this article and video about Professor Sucharit Bhakdi MD and his views on Covid may be relevant to this thread:

      “In February, 2021, Professor Sucharit Bhakdi MD and a number of his colleagues warned the European Medicines Agency about the potential danger of blood clots and cerebral vein thrombosis in millions of people receiving experimental gene-based injections. ”

      1. Procopius

        But that hasn’t come true, has it? According to the MSM the blood clots problems are quite rare, less than a hundred so far, compared to millions of doses of vaccine administered. I have not read the article, but your description sounds like the other 98% of predicted “risks” that never take place. “… there could be a risk of …” is not a helpful warning.

  9. The Rev Kev

    “Stranded abroad, Australians lodge UN petition against government for ‘right to return home’’

    Lots of mixed feelings about this one. There are Indian-Australians saying that the government has a responsibility to bring their relatives in India back to Oz right away but it comes down to capacity. There are about 9,000 of them in India and there are only so many quarantine hotels to host them in – for a fortnight at a time. Between September and Christmas alone over 60,00 returned from overseas but there are still about 40,00 trapped overseas so those in India are about a quarter of those. So which of those overseas has priority?

    Certainly the government went overboard criminalizing people trying to return home so perhaps it was a response to those two cricketers that snuck through Doha to get back home from India or perhaps they are also thinking of private flights trying to get people into Oz from India. Unfortunately the Oz government operates on the mother-knows-best attitude so are not telling people their reasoning and that has been true since the beginning of the pandemic.

    The main problem is that it is the federal government’s responsibility to bring in people from overseas but it is the State’s responsibility to run those quarantine hotels – and to live with the consequences if the virus gets loose like it has several times now. The worse one was last year in Victoria when about 900 people died as a consequence. The State governments want the federal government to have dedicated, isolated quarantine facilities but the feds are digging in their back-heels about this. The only reason that I can think of why is that perhaps that they are hoping that when everybody is vaccinated here, they can just open up the doors to everybody – those returning Aussies, foreign-students and also tourists, especially those on cruise ships. But the vaccination plan as gone off the rails and there is growing mistrust over them.

    And then there is the tourist mobs and the universities screaming that returning Aussies be pushed to the back of the que so that tourist and foreign-student scan come back to save their industries. Yes, the universities count as a industry as educating people from overseas is big business. Thing is, if the government had made it a priority to bring everybody home last year like they said that they were going to do, then this would not be a problem They could have re-opened up Christmas island and a bunch of other isolated facilities to bring them back but instead fumbled their way through last year like most other leaders. So doing the right thing was also the smartest thing to do. Who new?

    1. RMO

      At least Australia has some quarantine requirements. As far as I can tell all that gets done at the airports here in Canada is “You got Covid?” “Nope” “You gotta quarantine plan?” “Yep” ” Go on through” Combine that with keeping the ski resorts open and you get what we got here in BC – a 1,300 per day case peak (out of a 5.5 million population), most of them the new strains from Brazil, South Africa etc. It’s starting to drop again now after bringing in new restrictions including the first in-Province travel restrictions we’ve had but the rate today is still double the first wave peak.

    2. JBird4049

      And then there is the tourist mobs and the universities screaming that returning Aussies be pushed to the back of the que so that tourist and foreign-student scan come back to save their industries.

      Actual Australian citizens who also have Australian family and friends are supposed to be, essentially for an indefinite length of time, exiled for the financial benefit of big biz and their non-Australians customers?

      That takes seriously big brass ones that does.

  10. chris

    Regarding the article on NY state’s eviction moratorium and relief, and other such programs in the country… has anyone seen good analysis of where this all ends? I can’t see people letting millions into the street due to eviction or foreclosure. I also can’t see people supporting the measures that would support people staying in their homes. And I know many real estate pros are assuming that the current supply crunch will be resolved when the foreclosures and evictions are allowed to proceed. I also know that the current construction material supply issue is a real thing and can’t be legislated away. Any idea what’s coming next?

    1. Jeremy Grimm

      I have no idea what is coming next but I share your concerns. Things could get very interesting in some of our cities when a decision is finally reached as to how to deal with all the problems our leaders have kicked down the road.

      1. Glen

        Apparently Austin, TX just passed a local law making homelessness illegal. My small PNW town did the same last year.

        I’m sure people want to do right and “protect” their towns and cities, but throwing people with no money in jail just means those very same town/city dwellers are going to get the bill. And slowly, one buck at a time, our society gets pulled apart. This is all part of the “race to the bottom” that we have been on for the last forty years. We have to do something different.

        How about we figure out how to house these people? Any one of the billionaires that has benefited from CV-19 could solve the homelessness problem in America, and still be billionaires.

        How about we give these people something useful to do? We are going to have the fire season from hell in this drought. How about we restart the CCC and get people into the woods doing the grunt work to make our firefighters safer?

        Just some ideas – half baked and full of holes, but we have work to do as a country, and people that need something useful to do.

        1. Michaelmas

          Glen: How about we figure out how to house these people?

          Since as of 2019 there was a ratio of something like 22-29 empty homes for each single homeless person in the U.S., how about we do something as amazingly obvious as house the homeless in those empty homes?

          “The White House reports that as of 2019, over half a million Americans don’t have a home to sleep in on any given night, while almost 17 million potential homes were standing empty … between 2017 and 2019, there was an increase of over 34,000 unsheltered homeless people nationally – even before a global pandemic and expected recession.

          “All this, while the number of empty properties around the country has increased by over 1.1 million since 2010, leaving over 12% of all housing units in the US vacant as of the latest figures in 2018.”

          And if that doesn’t work, how about we retrofit some of the many disused malls and offices across the U.S. as housing?

        2. Jack Parsons

          Some snark and some truth:
          Billionaires are sacred beings. The more billionaires that exist in America, the closer we are to God.

          The taxpayers will not pay for arresting the homeless- the homeless will be billed for it, and will become permanent debt slaves. This is libertarian dogma going back decades.

          Frankly, I think that everyone younger than 40 should leave the US if they can.

          1. John Anthony La Pietra

            That phrase “the closer we are to God” could be taken two ways, y’know. . . .

  11. Danwhitestone

    –Folks, we got real problems out west this year—

    Wonder where the hundreds of thousands of ‘migrants’ Biden’s allowing in will settle with their families?

    Hopefully east of the Mississippi where there’s more water?

    1. tegnost

      “They” are simply continuing a migration pattern established by TPB. Your ire might be more effectively directed at the policies that drove them here.

  12. kareninca

    I am still trying to figure out why the first surge in India hit the working classes, but left the professionals unscathed. As was pointed out yesterday, professionals in India often have loads of people into their homes to wait on them. If the professionals didn’t have those people in during the first surge, and thereby escaped infection, how is it that they are getting it now? They let the servants back, thinking it was all over with the servant group, but it wasn’t, and thereby they are now getting infected by them?

    I wonder if anyone knows how much the professionals cut back on servant help during the first surge. My impression was that they were so dependent on them that that would have been very difficult. In which case, why weren’t the professionals infected by their servants the first time around?

    Do we have any data on repeated, light infections? What happens when people are lightly infected, but fight it off, and then are infected again and again? Could that be what has happened to the professional class? I am waiting for the second or third shoe to drop where I live (Silicon Valley); I can’t see how we haven’t had this come through, but we have so far escaped much illness.

  13. kareninca

    I’m trying to figure out the significance of this study:

    “SARS-CoV-2 spike protein alone may cause lung damage” (

    “Using a newly developed mouse model of acute lung injury, researchers found that exposure to the SARS-CoV-2 spike protein alone was enough to induce COVID-19-like symptoms including severe inflammation of the lungs. SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, is covered in tiny spike proteins. These proteins bind with receptors on our cells, starting a process that allows the virus to release its genetic material into a healthy cell.
    “Our findings show that the SARS-CoV2 spike protein causes lung injury even without the presence of intact virus,” said Pavel Solopov, Ph.D., DVM, research assistant professor at the Frank Reidy Research Center for Bioelectrics at Old Dominion University. “This previously unknown mechanism could cause symptoms before substantial viral replication occurs.”

    Doesn’t the vaccine cause your body to create the spike protein? Does it create some special portion of the spike protein, in a way that doesn’t harm one’s lungs?

    1. lambert strether

      “Monkeys exaggerate. Mice lie.”

      Just me, but I file all animal studies under “Big If True.”

      1. Jeremy Grimm

        And humans? … Are results in humans not counted if they run counter to Big Money interests?

        I share your skepticism about animal studies. I am not so sure about human studies, at least those suggesting Corona spicules are problematic for humans.

  14. FluffytheObeseCat

    Nice Sanders quote via Greenwald. Thanks. He’s right. His detractors are not.

  15. a fax machine

    Keeping up with the kids: the left now has it’s own 4chan

    I find this amusing because, frankly, I can remember when I was permanently banned from 8chan’s /pol/ board for being a “dirty jew”. I had claimed that the holocaust happened *and* that was a bad, immoral thing for the Nazis to do. Bunkerchan was the result of 8chan’s leftypol being bullied off the site by Nazis becoming global moderators, and ironically Bunkerchan now has 3x as many users because 8chan /pol/ kept directing all banned users there regardless of the infraction. This includes everyone from national socialists (socialism talk is not allowed, even if it’s for white people) to the people participating in the BLM protests. And like all good leftist periodicals, they have their splitter faction at leftpol (omit the y). A significant amount of Sanders organizing happened in both sites in 2016 and 2020.

    I’d post a direct link but won’t because of spam. I’m certain the older leftists here would find it a fascinating development.

  16. Dictynna

    New York requires $15 broadband for poor people, promptly gets sued by ISPs Ars Technica

    New York should have first attempted to set up their own ISP to offer this. The commercial ISPs would have fallen over themselves to offer the service instead or, if not, NY could have gone ahead with their own service.

    Good idea, bad tactics.

      1. Fraibert

        Government, mostly through the work of various university and private researchers, developed the core technologies of the internet. However, government plays a limited role in the actual operations of the internet.

        At a very high level, the basic goal of the TCP/IP protocol suite to establish a reliable data transmission mechanism by routing data flexibly through connected nodes. This means that these connected nodes have to exist in the first place.

        Various private telecommunications companies, both familiar to the American people (e.g., AT&T) and less well known (e.g., NTT and Centurylink), operate major “backbone” nodes (really, these are gigantically powered routers) and make money through peering agreements (charging for data to be carried through their network).

        The backbone providers are interconnected at various points, enabling data to cross through different networks to reach its destination. TCP/IP, supplemented by various other networking protocols, enables this complex routing between networks. Long distance (expensive!) fiber optic lines connect the varying nodes of the backbone providers and these connections even go undersea to interconnect continents.

        The point is that the “internet” is actually quite a privatized system. It’s true that the quasi-government (though technically separate) ICANN (Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) runs IP address assignments and the Domain Name System, but IP assignments and DNS don’t do much without all these privately owned and operated routers and interconnections.

        So I guess what I’m saying is the internet really is a private system in many key respects, though the actual charges likely greatly exceed the cost of the service provided (except in difficult to serve situations, such as rural areas–where the cost tends to be very large).

  17. Phil in KC

    I agree with Bernie re his theory of Insurrection, or whatever you want to call it. There is a strong economic component to the radicalization of elements of the middle class. Some of the prosperous have lost prosperity and are hanging on tight; others have never had prosperity and it’s attendant features (stabile community, good health, etc), and others are fighting to retain their prosperity. However, there is also the “replacement theory” that is correlates with the Bernie theory, that is that white people (men in particular) are being replaced by or overtaken by people of color, LGBTQ, etc. as espoused by Tucker Carlson. Both theories buttress each other. Ignore at your own risk.

    Who are these establishment-type Dems anyway and do they have much purchase in making policy or passing legislation?

    1. LifelongLib

      A system in which people can have nice things only by taking them away from somebody else has bigger problems than color/gender/sexual orientation.

  18. rowlf

    Being stuck at home today I went searching for recent interviews with Adolph Reed Jr and with Thomas Frank. Both are a joy to watch and I like when Reed goes into “Shere Khan : I can’t be bothered with that, I have no time for that nonsense.” mode on some shallow thinking or concept.

    With Thomas Frank on a popular cable show I was surprised not to see his appearance on the Bill Maher show discussed here at NC. On the other hand, from the snippets I saw from the show Frank said what we say here all the time. I hope as more people learn about him they get interested in what he has written.

  19. Expat2uruguay

    Responding to requests by the Golden Gate Salmon Association (GSSA), the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) announced Wednesday that it is trucking all of its hatchery baby salmon to release sites in and around San Francisco Bay this year to minimize drought-related losses exacerbated by the draining of Central Valley Project and State Water Project reservoirs to supply irrigation water to San Joaquin Valley agribusiness and Southern California water agencies in recent years.

    I’m not familiar with this website, but the author, Dan Bacher is well known in Sacramento:

    1. John A

      Many years ago, Stockholm released loads of baby salmon in the hope that they would return as adults to spawn years later. It turned into the biggest seagull banquet ever seen.

    1. Lambert Strether

      Here is the paper:

      Unexpected detection of SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in the prepandemic period in Italy (preprint) Tumori

      There are no robust data on the real onset of severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) infection and spread in the prepandemic period worldwide. We investigated the presence of SARS-CoV-2 receptor-binding domain (RBD)-specific antibodies in blood samples of 959 asymptomatic individuals enrolled in a prospective lung cancer screening trial between September 2019 and March 2020 to track the date of onset, frequency, and temporal and geographic variations across the Italian regions. SARS-CoV-2 RBD-specific antibodies were detected in 111 of 959 (11.6%) individuals, starting from September 2019 (14%), with a cluster of positive cases (>30%) in the second week of February 2020 and the highest number (53.2%) in Lombardy. This study shows an unexpected very early circulation of SARS-CoV-2 among asymptomatic individuals in Italy several months before the first patient was identified, and clarifies the onset and spread of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic. Finding SARS-CoV-2 antibodies in asymptomatic people before the COVID-19 outbreak in Italy may reshape the history of pandemic.

      Lombardy, eh? See also Prato in Tuscany.

  20. bassmule

    A true story: I flew my two-shotted self from Hartford to Atlanta last week to visit an old friend. I had to check off that I wasn’t sick, hadn’t been sick, and would wear a mask at all times in the airport and on the plane. Refusal to wear a mask would result in being removed from the plane. Various other expressions of fierceness. And then, once we were aloft, they began food and beverage service. As I was getting off at the end of the flight, I said to an attendant: “You are strict on masks, and then you do food and beverage. Does that seem logical to you?” And I could see that the person was embarrassed. What a sucky job. What a sucky employer. (Delta, not that it matters.)

    1. Angie Neer

      I have a friend who does a great deal of international travel for business. Besides the normal annoyance of how easy it is to pick up a bug on any plane trip, he has a wife with a weak immune system. Some years ago, certainly pre-pandemic, he came up with two rules that he says almost completely eliminated his acquisition of bugs during trips: 1. Don’t touch your face (remember when that was all the rage during the early pandemic response? And how incredibly hard it is?). 2. Don’t eat or drink anything that’s been handled by anybody else. These days that could probably be shorted to just the one rule: keep your mask on.

  21. JBird4049

    When I asked Mohan Tiwari about these online platforms, he said, “These big companies are luring away customers with big discounts. We cannot hope to match up to them. There were around 18 bookshops in the Esplanade area earlier. Now only Modern Books is left. I imagine they are also struggling to stay afloat.”

    When working in San Francisco, I use to be able to be able to quickly visit one of several new and as well as three or four used bookstores during my lunch hour twenty years ago. This doesn’t include the ones just out of walking range. Ten years later, there were maybe two.

    Some of this was due to Amazon rapacity, but I think that the insane cost of Bay Area real estate pushing rents up and the low, low profit margins any bookstore has was the problem, but damn, when multiple bookstores, some near a century old go away… In a fairly dense city full of readers.

    I would go to the used books to look for anything interesting especially on history, biographies. Perhaps to check fiction for some old books of my favorite writers. If something more unusual, like philosophy, well again, almost anything good has already been printed before I was born. Then on to new books, if I had the extra money, for some hot, I-just-must-have-it-nownownow, reads. No waiting, no shipping fees, just pay (in cash) and go. The smell of musty, moldy narrow stack and stacks of books. I miss it.

    But it was an ecosystem of new and used, big to tiny stores, sometimes semi specializing in some area all supporting each other at least indirectly.

    At least City Lights is still open, barely. And there is Green Apple Books.

  22. drumlin woodchuckles

    About that murmuration of tight-flocking birds . . .

    . . . I do not think those are starlings.

    They are over the edge of the sea . . . . between sea and shore. A strange place for starlings.

    Towards the end of the film I see some of them flashing white as they turn. Starlings have no white to flash. Many shorebirds do. I think those are some kind of shorebird. Some kind of small-medium sandpiper. ( Maybe . . . dunlins? But that’s just a wild-ass guess).

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