Links 7/26/2021

Couple’s anniversary dinner on river interrupted by cruise of nudists Metro UK

The return of Britain’s meat-eating plants BBC

Tokyo Olympics: Japanese 13-year-old Momiji Nishiya wins gold in skateboarding street final South China Morning Post

Horrifying robot plays basketball at Olympics NY Post

Trucks Move Past Cars on the Road to Autonomy Wired

Review: Why Facebook can never fix itself MIT Technology Review

These Bendy Plastic Chips Fit in Unusual Places Wired

Opinion: Small farms are the future of food systems Deutsche Welle

United Republic Of Soybeans: GMO And Neocolonialism In The Southern Cone Brasilwire


Coexisting with the Coronavirus New Yorker

Now the world’s most famous medical journal the Lancet is accused of costing lives by sitting on a study showing human transmission of Covid-19 that was suppressed by China Daily Mail

NYC Delta COVID Wave Sends Relatively Few to Hospitals So Far The City

The Tokyo Olympics could be a COVID-19 “super evolutionary event” Ars Technica

Why England’s newfound pandemic freedom is alarming for young people FT


As coronavirus surges, GOP lawmakers are moving to limit public health powers WaPo

Fauci says US headed in ‘wrong direction’ on coronavirus AP

Conflicting school mask guidance sparks confusion The Hill

Sparked by pandemic fallout, homeschooling surges across US AP

Some Adolescents Aren’t Getting Vaccinated, as Wary Parents Weigh Risks WSJ

Sarah Huckabee Sanders urges people to get the ‘Trump vaccine’ NY Post


Covid-19 Vaccine Holdouts Face Restrictions in Europe as Delta Variant Spreads WSJ

Bharat Biotech’s Covaxin vaccine is running into deeper troubles abroad Scroll

HMO: Early vaccinees are twice as likely to catch COVID as later recipients Times of Israel

U.S. Population Growth, an Economic Driver, Grinds to a Halt WSJ

Old Blighty

Labour recruiting staff on insecure contracts while making mass redundancies Independent

Before Jeremy Corbyn, There Was Michael Foot Jacobin

The Great Barrier Reef is a victim of climate change – but it could be part of the solution Guardian

Western Wildfires

Firefighter goes missing battling wildfire in Montana as more than 86 wildfires burn across US CNN

‘We’re going to see more’ wildfires, Oregon governor warns Politico

‘There’s nothing left in Lytton’: the Canadian village destroyed by wildfire – picture essay Guardian

Yep, it’s bleak, says expert who tested 1970s end-of-the-world prediction Guardian

The Caribbean

The Many Faces of Regime Change in Cuba Jacobin

Mexican president calls Cuba ‘example,’ wants OAS replaced ABC

Biden  Administration

Biden’s Antitrust Team Signals a Big Swing at Corporate Titans NYT


Cuomo said AG probe would clear him. Now his aides say it’s political. Politico

Guillotine Watch

Rich people ‘suffering’ as Hamptons businesses can’t find summer labor NY Post (PHL Denizen) Hoisted from comments.

Class Warfare

‘I Have No Teeth’: Michigan Prisoners Say Long Wait to See Dentist Is Inhumane Marshall Project

Elites Profit From “Nonprofit” Charter Schools Jacobin

Will Congress Finally End the Subminimum Wage for Workers With Disabilities? Capital & Main

Medicare for All Advocates Take to the Streets of Over 50 US Cities Common Dreams


U.S offers further air support to Afghan troops amid Taliban offensive Reuters

Hollywood Justice The Baffler


US-China relations: Beijing lays down red lines for first time in Sherman meeting South China Morning Post

China blames US for fraught relations as talks begin Al Jazeera

China accuses US of creating ‘imaginary enemy’ at high-level talks Deutsche Welle


The Political Fix: Pegasus, electoral bonds and tax raids offer a clearer view why BJP is dominant Scroll

New stable of unicorns riding high in India Asia Times

Pakistan will let people of Kashmir decide if they want to join us or become independent: Imran Khan Scroll

Farm Laws: Rahul Gandhi Drives Tractor to Parliament; Police Cracks Down on Protesting Politicians The Wire

“We Are Stronger than Their Injustice”: Indian Farmers Strengthen Protest Amid COVID-19 Surge The Diplomat

As monsoon-soaked Mumbai battles with the sea, residents on the margins hold out key lessons Scroll

Antidote du Jour (via):

And a bonus video (guurst):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. Isotope_C14

    – Yep, it’s bleak, says expert who tested 1970s end-of-the-world prediction Guardian

    “Under one, termed business as usual, or BAU2, growth would stall and combine with population collapse. The other, termed comprehensive technology (CT), modeled stalled economic growth without social collapse. Both scenarios “show a halt in growth within a decade or so from now,” the study says, adding, that “pursuing continuous growth, is not possible.”

    Sustainability is the answer, she says.”

    As Mark Blyth says, and I’m paraphrasing here, that the operating system we have is incapable of this level of update. We must charge forward into a BAU2 future, and have a collapse.

    Was nice knowing ya’ll – hopefully we have more than 5 or so years, but this year’s weather/fires/crops aren’t looking so good.

    1. Mary

      Add up the Small Farms=sustainability, United Republic Of Soybeans, the Gates attempted control of farmland plus the climate change warnings, and it seems that the easiest thing that one can do to effectively fight all that, and to help improve the world in their daily activities, is to eat 100% organic food, certified by reputable agencies.

      Marvelous documentary on Netflix, Kiss the Ground.

      Watch that and you’ll know why and how important this is.

        1. Tom Bradford

          Agreed. I’ve taken a copy (hope I’m not infringing anyone’s copyright) and will pass it on to our local Maori activists, not that I am one, as it makes a powerful point with beautiful simplicity. And I don’t think blind pseudo-religious support for Israel’s dispossession of the Palestinians is anything like as strong here as it is in the US.

          I wonder, too, if anyone maintaining such right gives a thought to the rights of the peoples listed in Joshua 7, to the extent that they, too, survived the process.

    2. Amfortas the hippie

      i’ve heard about the book, Limits to Growth, since i was a teenager(talk in headshops and around campfires with the pseudohippies who lived full time at the Texas Rennfaire)
      but i was only able to find it(for less than hundreds of dollars(!) at an estate sale…so, at random,lol…which is also where i got my Marx.
      the snippets online i had read over the years rang true…and the book, itself, was no disappointment.
      somebody mentioned Hedges going full-on Amos…well this was Amos with a lab coat and a slide rule.
      i’ll also add…when i first got a computer and the web, circa 1999, one of the first things i ran to ground was “global warming”…and landed on the Hadley Climate Model, at the Met. They had a little do-dad, where you could plug in location, etc, and run the model forward.
      their predictions for where i live right now turned out to be spot on…if the last few years represent even a sort of new equilibrium.
      even the recent ice age event, wherein Texas got Montana’s winter for 2 weeks, was included in the transition phase.
      and then, of course, there’s good ol’ Peak Oil(
      i wondered what the deal was with the sudden shift to Iraq…and dug in.
      landed at LATOC, a peak oil forum of some repute…a distributed think-tank, like NC, we quickly went beyond mere oil, and constructed a sort of Peak Civilisation Model that has held up over time…even if our assumptions about oil and gas were off in many ways.

      point is, this should surprise no one…the data and modelling have been there for at least 50 years…and there’s abundant evidence that the Masters knew full well what was coming, but decided that short term wealth and power were more important.
      i have seen the pandemic in this light from the get-go, too…it will never be proven, but it makes the most sense to me that the Bosses let her rip…because the fundamental problem at the root of all the rest of the problems is Too Many Humans.
      from endless wars to endless and worsening poverty to lack of healthcare in the richest country in history…all of the headscratchers fit pretty well into this framework.
      remember that, of all the nasties that flew from Pandora’s Jar, the greeks feared Hope the most, and were pleased that it, alone, had been contained.

      1. JTMcPhee

        The version I ran across years ago, can’t find it now even with DDG and other search engines, was that Hope, the worst of all the plagues, the thing that drives the investor/rentier class as much as anything and blinkers the 320 million “temporarily embarrassed millionaires” and the billions of aspirational Others, actually did escape, with obvious consequences…

        Wonder why it’s laid on poor Pandora/Eve, all the past, present and future horror, when it was maybe the male portion that moved us to monotheism, killed the Mother Goddess, brought on this version of “civilization” which may be the only… but let us give credit to a lot of women, too, Madelyn Albright and Elizabeth Holmes and Catherine and Elizabeth, who make it plain that X and Y both have it in them to f@@k things up for the rest of us, and we mopes pretty uniformly don’t seem to be able to see how our oikos is being stripped of all habitability….

        You got to get a “certificate of occupancy” most places for a new dwelling or post-renovations — maybe this (obviously corruptible but “hopeful” manifestation of the precautionary principle could somehow be extended to cover all the mega shit that shits like Gates and Cheney and Zuck and good ol’ “Relentless” Bezos,

        jeebus, how to redirect all those many interlocking interconnected threads of vectors and incentives of human activity into something that leads to sustainastability? Kill one billionaire, 9 more jump up in his/her place…

    3. Lee

      Here on the U.S. left coast and elsewhere the big three, food, potable water, and breathable air (due to fire smoke and Covid) are all under threat at the same time. We have achieved a Jackpot trifecta! Meanwhile our two major political parties are busy dithering, dallying, and rhetorically counting coup on each other.

    4. Grant

      It is possible to at least make things less bad with more comprehensive economic planning. But, I remember someone saying that most people could imagine the end of the world before the end of capitalism, and there is so much money out there now just filling the heads of people with nonsense, that I don’t have tons of faith. There has been a four month long strike among coal miners, the media can’t be bothered to cover it, huge news, massive implications. The media (owned by corporations) can’t be honest about single payer, even though it would benefit many businesses, and countless other issues. So, I don’t expect the media to cover the need the need to replace capitalism with an actually sustainable system, which would require very comprehensive economic planning. That planning would need to be democratic, far more than what capitalism or state socialism would allow.

      What saddens me is that COVID did show that many jobs could be done remotely. I live in southern California. You could see the difference in air quality, clear as day. The skies cleared, and a wide range of pollutants declined. But, as Karl William Kapp long ago demonstrated, many of these ecosystem impacts don’t show up in the private cost calculations for private businesses. Many businesses and our society are pushing “back to normal” in part to re-assert control in the workplace, and if that were to happen it would be a gigantic missed opportunity. What was normal before COVID was horrible on many levels anyway. An infrastructure was put in place to allow far more remote work, and it will be thrown away entirely in many instances. There have been a number of similar situations, where we showed things could be done differently and because of the dysfunctional economic system and the profit motive those potential changes were thrown to the side. Markets would be more up to the task if most of these ecosystem impacts could be monetized, but we can’t monetize most of them, and even if we could, given their scale, doing so would itself result in radical changes.

      We have a choice; make things less bad by ditching capitalism or hold onto capitalism and watch everything pretty quickly collapse. Keep in mind, the environmental crisis is far beyond carbon emissions. There are many things beyond CO2e emissions that are at the crisis stage. A fully decentralized and unplanned market economy cannot deal with these crises, I haven’t even seen anyone put effort into demonstrating how such a thing could work. Obvious why, it simply can’t.

      1. Isotope_C14

        You seldom hear anything about NOx (a powerful GHG, a contributor to our crisis stage) – as our fertilizers are necessary to retain our current population size. Compassionate de-growth might not be enough and that could result in catastrophic population declines due to starvation, unless non-fossil sources of nitrogen can be found. What is it, 50% of the Nitrogen we ingest is from fossil sources?

        Methane is another story entirely.

        Remote work also eliminates the need for middle managers I suspect, and you can’t have them have to do real work, they don’t know how! ;)

        Shame that they are putting people in the office to generate more CO2 for work that can be done from home. Silly really to have people live “Office Space” first-hand.

      2. BlakeFelix

        I want to slightly defend capitalism. It’s unstable, but what we have now is a degenerate capitalism that borders on facism IMO. There’s no bailouts or price supports in capitalism, IMO.

        1. Grant

          How does capitalism exist if there is no more room to grow regarding resource consumption and pollution generation? If there is no more room, especially given how inequitable capitalism is, who consumes and pollutes and at what levels? Who decides this? How does equality get factored in? How do we address this internationally, given how inequitable this all is between and within countries? The environmental crisis is far beyond carbon emissions, and we know that we cannot monetize most impacts. Just an idea of what I am talking about. The industrial economy produces up to 70,000 chemicals that don’t occur naturally in ecosystems, yet we throw them into ecosystems. They all have differing impacts, and they interact with one another. Do you monetize all those chemicals? Do you monetize soil pollution, soil erosion, plastic pollution, biodiversity? There are clear limits regarding monetizing these impacts. Seems that comprehensive economic planning is needed, and we need to figure things out in physical units and not market values. Beyond all of this, the monetary and financial parts of the economy CAN grow forever. How does capitalism deal with all of this? There is no way it can. We can like or not like it (as someone that is not a fan of capitalism, good riddance), but our feelings don’t matter. How could capitalism make it through this and deal with the crisis? I see no way this is realistically possible. If we hold on to capitalism we are toast. Society will break down as the environment breaks down.

          1. drumlin woodchuckles

            Capitalism by itself can’t and won’t. That’s why we would ideally have public government regulating business behavior with a heavy hand and a heavy foot.

            The “60,000 chemicals issue” could be solved by heavy handed legislation outlawing the emission of so much as a single molecule of ” not PROVEN safe” elements or compounds, and the business containing all traces of its emissions of those chemicals would of course pass the cost of that control onto the consumer. The consumer has no right to escape the costs of its consumption.

            Once again, this can’t work in a Free Trade environment. For obvious-by-now reasons.

            1. HotFlash

              Seems fair, but how do we know what is safe and what is harmful? We are not each of us specialists in bioscience, meteorology, evolutionary biology, virology, toxicology, AND nuclear physics (and that is just a start). How do we know what the real deal is? If only there was some organization supported by the public that was impartial and empowered to check such things out and let us know!

              1. drumlin woodchuckles

                Toughen up the precautionary principle to the level of pre-emptionary principle.

                Assume a chemical is dangerous until proven safe. That means the default position would be a hard-ban on any release of any of the 60,000 chemicals. And pass the cost of total containment of every last molecule of each and every one of the 60,000 chemicals on to the consumer

                If all 60,000 are pre-outlawed and pre-banned, then we don’t have to worry about which is “safe” or not. Assume none of them are. Assume any two or three or more of them together produce whole new force-multiplying levels of co-danger. Pre-ban them all.

        2. Chris

          … what we have now is a degenerate capitalism that borders on facism…

          What we have now isn’t really any form of capitalism; it’s more like corporate socialism.

          1. Grant

            The state has been central to capitalism since the system emerged from feudalism. I don’t think the scale of state support has radically increased overall. It has in response to financial crises, but the scale of those crises is growing. A large share of technology has come out of the state sector in recent decades, we developed from about the War of 1812 on behind the highest average industrial tariffs in the developed world (Ha Joon Chang has written a lot about this), remained so for over a century. We have one of the most protectionist agricultural systems in the world. We have a capitalist system, with strong state support of capitalist interests. Been the case since capitalism emerged. I mean, what was colonialism and imperialism anyway?

            Please define socialist and capitalism. The term “corporate socialism” is a horrible term if you ask me. Seems to equate the state doing something in the economy as “socialism”. I am not a Marxist, but appreciate some of what Marx and Engels said. Engels wasn’t happy with using socialism to describe all state activity in the economy:


            “It is simply a falsification perpetrated by the Manchester bourgeoisie in their own interests that they call ‘socialism’ every interference by the state in free competition – protective tariffs, guilds, tobacco monopoly, nationalisation of certain branches of industry, the Overseas Trade Society, and the royal porcelain factory. We should criticize this but not believe it. If we do the latter and develop a theory on the basis of this belief our theory will collapse together with its premises upon simple proof that this alleged socialism is nothing but, on the one hand, feudal reaction and, on the other, a pretext for squeezing out money, with the secondary object of turning as many proletarians as possible into civil servants and pensioners dependent upon the state, thus organizing alongside of the disciplined army of soldiers and civil servants an army of workers as well. Compulsory voting brought about by superiors in the state apparatus instead of by factory overseers – a fine sort of socialism! But that’s where people get if they believe the bourgeoisie what it does not believe itself but only pretends to believe: that the state means socialism.”

    5. Susan the other

      I think Mark Blyth’s assessment is both right and wrong. We might well be incapable of updating our way of life because it is so absurd and toxic – why bother? And because we are lazy. We plod. But humans are nothing if not geeks. Hacks. Nerds. I think that means we will, as a species, do any number of interations of some solution until it works. I agree our value system is pretty quaint. But instead of an overhaul, why not just open the flood gates? Take a page from Gandalf and release the river. You can’t tell me that central bankers haven’t started doing that already. Because lookit: why is “property” so sacred? It’s because it is a store of treasure. And treasure? Well, that’s just money. And Money? Newsflash here – Money is nothing more than human cooperation. I do believe we are in an horrendous mess. But I also believe we will get ourselves out of it. Essentially by not just doing the same thing over and over again like a crazy person – but by flooding the system with money – the means to do effective innovation to achieve sustainability. There’s no loss of “property” in this model – only a massive gain of valuable, sustainable new “property”. Property for all. And I don’t know why this approach won’t finally be the solution to ending poverty. And since it uses money effectively, it could even still be called capitalism. New Capitalism.

      1. Pelham

        I like this take on things. It’s a sort of judo move. Instead of resisting the momentum of human nature or capitalism, go with it. And you’re right that bankers are flooding the zone with money. The problem is that the money is being absorbed in non-productive and counterproductive ways (eg, stock buybacks, real estate and “art”). The missing element is global socialism, or maybe an almost Nietzschean will to actually tackle climate change on the scale it demands. I’m waiting for an inspiring FDR-like figure to emerge and bend the course of events to a righteous purpose.

        1. Petter

          I’m wondering, has any civilization facing collapse, or severe decline, ever stopped and thought we have to change or we’re f*ked? And managed it? I can’t think of any but maybe there are some.

          1. The Rev Kev

            Maybe to an extent the British Empire? After WW2, instead of trying to battle for each and every country they owned like the French and the Dutch did, they instead dissolved most of their empire and reformulated themselves into a financial empire based on the City of London and funneled through tax haven island possessions.

    6. JBird4049

      There is some small hope to avert a total, catastrophic Bronze Age style collapse, but it is “only” going to require the overthrow of the corrupt, powerful, and increasingly fearful neoliberal regime. Since I have family that are still children, I guess that is something to work on.

      1. drumlin woodchuckles

        If it is too strong to frontally overthrow, is it inattentive enough to laterally undermine? How would ten million termites attack a mighty block of wood? One little bite at a time, I suppose.

  2. jr

    Re: unicorns

    I was deeply disappointed upon opening the article to see it wasn’t about a stable of GMO unicorns. Ethical concerns aside, it would be so deliciously surreal.

    1. h2odragon

      No need for GMO; you can transplant horn buds onto horses… then do some anti-rejection treatments in an ongoing basis, i guess. More Profits! like selling the printer cheap and the ink expensive.

  3. zagonostra

    >Covid Reporting

    The last place I go to for my morning news consumption is Google News. I like to see what the aggregators over at Alphabet what me to know. This morning two news stories caught my eye.

    Radio host skeptical of COVID vaccine is fighting for his life with virus, family says –
    Charlotte Observer (also in NYT)


    A woman in Alabama whose 28-year-old son died of COVID-19 regrets not getting vaccinated and said his last words were ‘this is not a hoax, this is real’ – Yahoo News

    Last week we had this story:

    Alabama doctor tells unvaccinated COVID patients begging for vaccine: ‘It’s too late’

    What I gather from this is that this will be an ongoing trend from my friends at Google. Since I get news also from alternative sources, many that have been de-platformed, I get an unhealthy dose of the vaccine’s deleterious effect. Someone referred to that space where we spend our time and give our attention as an “ecosystem.” This implies homeostasis, but what I see and experience visiting different sites dishing up information, is anything but. It’s more like an unstable environment that is in danger of collapse.

    1. Pelham

      I saw those headlines too. Impressive. What would be more impressive is if we could formulate a legally binding document that those who resist the vaccine for no medical reason (and there are legit medical reasons) and who dismiss Covid as either a hoax or no big deal could sign stating that if they contract the virus, they will be entitled to no hospitalization or medical treatment. Maybe this would set some minds straight before they end up on their deathbeds.

      As much as I hate to say it, these people have a legitimate argument about individual liberty (although the wider argument about one’s fundamental obligations to society outweigh this, IMO). But that personal liberty comes with personal responsibility. What’s missing is accountability, and such a document would provide the needed link.

      1. Cuibono

        yeah we should do this for diet and heart attacks too.
        And smoking and cancer.
        actually for all diseases.

        Call it the No adherence; no Care Law.

      2. kareninca

        Do you think that people who don’t take an AIDS prophylactic, and get AIDS from sex, should also not be given medical treatment? Do you think that women who have sex without contraception should not be provided with pregnancy treatment? What about people who smoke? No cancer or emphysema treatment? What about people who ski? Ride motorcycles? Eat at McDonald’s? Drink more than 4 oz. of wine a day if female, or 8 oz. if male? Or is your desire to control and punish restricted to one convenient group just now? To be extended later, as the “two minutes hate” propaganda moves on to a new target?

        It isn’t easy to stop wanting to control other people, and to stop wanting to feel morally superior to them, and to stop wanting to punish them. But these are all good aims.

        1. Tom Bradford

          We have decided as a society that people who choose to drink and then put other people at peril by driving should be punished. We have decided as a society that people who try to foment hate and violence against other races or groups should be stopped. We have decided as a society that people who push, or try to push, addictive drugs on others should be stopped and punished.

          In all the examples you give the only one who suffers from their decision – to risk AIDS or pregnancy (and someone who knowingly infects another with AIDS can be punished), or their health with bad eating habits – affects only themselves and society gives them that choice. Societies with public health systems even choose to help them with the consequences to a greater or lesser extent. But someone refusing a vaccine imperils society at large by potentially becoming a vector for infecting others, including strangers, and hindering society’s attempts to eliminate the disease for everyone’s benefit. Seems to me that society is entitled to discourage – and yes, even retaliate against – any who choose to imperil it.

          1. Cuibono

            “We have decided as a society that people who push, or try to push, addictive drugs on others should be stopped and punished.”
            You forgot to mention we also punish those who uses these drugs. We effectively also punished the early sufferers of AIDS in so many ways.
            Should we also punish those who have TB and fall out of treatment? How about those who fail to get the flu shot. You seem to be pretty eager to punish. How about support?

          2. kareninca

            “But someone refusing a vaccine imperils society at large by potentially becoming a vector for infecting others . . .”

            You’re taking it as a given that this “vaccine” prevents people from catching and spreading to others. There is less and less reason to think that every day. Actually it looks like it may make people more dangerous to others.

            Self-righteousness is especially odious when the self-righteous person isn’t even right.

            1. Yves Smith

              Not accurate. The problem is the CDC actively encouraging reckless behavior among the vaccinated as an incentive for getting vaccinated!

              1. skippy

                Which in light of clinical ethics begs the question of the nonmaleficence principle.

                The four main principles in clinical ethics are: beneficence, nonmaleficence, autonomy and justice.

                Everything blurring into the IMF admin …

              2. kareninca

                this is the full info for finding it:

                CDC Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
                Emerging Infectious Diseases
                Volume 27, Number 10October 2021
                Breakthrough Infections of SARS-CoV-2 Gamma Variant in Fully Vaccinated Gold Miners, French Guiana, 2021

                This is what IM Doc said on NC about the French Guiana study on July 24, 2021 at 8:18 am:

                “If you look at the brief discussion of cT or cycle threshold you will see that the vaccinated patients have a SIGNIFICANTLY lower cT than the unvaccinated. That is the way the PCR test works. It basically means the vaccinated have a much higher amount of viral active particles than the unvaccinated. That would account for the breakthroughs I and my colleagues are seeing being a bit more ill. And it would explain the clustering. THe vaccinated breakthroughs have much higher viral load so they are much more contagious and the higher viral load makes them more symptomatic.”

                I don’t claim to understand the study myself; I am relying on IM Doc and other people who have interpreted it.

                1. Yves Smith

                  It appears IM Doc was incorrect. From Dean:

                  The article discusses cT values;

                  “CT values were not different according to the immune status: median (interquartile range [IQR] of Ct (RdRp1) = 29 (25-35) for non-immune (n = 3),
                  21.5 (18-25) for vaccinated 1 dose (n=6) and 23 [21-27] for vaccinated 2 doses (n = 13), p = 0.15 with median test. For RdRp1: median [IQR] = 28 [25-33] for non-immune (n = 3), 20 [20-23] for vaccinated 1 dose (n = 5) and 23 (21-26) for vaccinated 2 doses (n = 13), p = 0.09 with median test. For N gene: median (IQR) = 32 (30-34) for non-immune (n = 2), 26 (25-28) for vaccinated 1 dose (n = 5), and 27 (26-31) for vaccinated 2 doses (n = 14), p = 0.30 with median test”

                  The P values do not show a significant difference. One problem is n is so small it is hard to detect a difference if it exists.

      3. zagonostra

        Your statement that with “personal liberty comes personal responsibility” without a just and rational proportionality would lead to a loss of both liberty and freedom.

        I think this is where I mainly disagree with my vaccinated siblings. I respect their decision, but they don’t respect mine – and, I know it’s their concern for me that motivates them. But I don’t try to convince them to get un-vaccinated I wish they would stop insisting that I should get vaccinated..

    2. kareninca

      I, too, go to google every day for my propaganda update. It’s really pretty crude stuff.

  4. BeliTsari

    Superb COVID coverage as always, THANK you! NYC hive-mind, ever more reminiscent of 70s disaster movie prelude stereotypes. We’d met a client @ Penn Station, handing her a KF-94, “we’d been told, ‘just go on about your lives, like normal,’ before 34K were fed to FIRE, Pharma… our new catastrophe kakistocracy complex. All they’ve learned is how to flip their apartments, indenture chronically ill PASC “essentials” and hide those dying of stroke, coronaries, vascular damage & deaths of disparity, as we’re 1099’d into virtual serfdom?” (Actually, we took her to Zabar’s, Murray’s & Jaques Torres!)

  5. Ahimsa

    The best graphic I have found illustrating the somewhat non-intuitive maxim

    “The more people you vaccinate, the higher their share of hospitalisations”


    “the *total* number in hospital is a fraction of what it would otherwise be”

    From the Financial Times article: (already featured at NakedCapitalism?)
    Why are fully vaccinated people testing positive for Covid?

    Link direct to graphic:

    1. Katniss Everdeen

      “The more people you vaccinate, the higher their share of hospitalisations”…

      Considering that the “vaccines” have been peddled as keeping people OUT of the hospital, I’d say that “somewhat non-ituitive maxim” is, whaddya call it, a euphemism.

      Definition of euphemism
      : the substitution of an agreeable or inoffensive expression for one that may offend or suggest something unpleasant

      1. Aumua

        No, you’re still mischaracterizing things. The vaccines (which are actual vaccines) claim less than 100% efficacy against hospitalization, so as Ahmisa correctly pointed out, hypothetically if 100% of the population was vaccinated then 100% of hospitalizations would also be vaccinated. It is a valid factor in increasing vaccinated cases/hospitalizations/deaths.

        This is not to say that there’s no problems with the vaccines or that they even live up to earlier promises. I don’t think they do.

        1. Katniss Everdeen

          No, you’re still mischaracterizing things.

          Me and joe biden:

          [BIDEN:] This is a simple, basic proposition. If you’re vaccinated, you’re not going to be hospitalized, you’re not going to be in an ICU unit, and you are not going to die….

          So, according to the prez, “hypothetically if 100% of the population was vaccinated,” 0% of hospitalizations would also be vaccinated. Simple and basic. Amirite?

          1. Aumua

            I agree that Biden (and others) should be more careful about their words, so you’re right about that. But that doesn’t make what Ahmisa said false: more people vaccinated in a population naturally leads to a higher percentage of vaccinated people in the hospital (but lower overall numbers of hospitalized). And this is something that needs to be taken into account when talking about “breakthrough hospitalizations” or whatever you want to call them.

            As far as that being a euphemism, I don’t really see how that applies here. What would you say that statement about hospitalizations and vaccines is a euphemism for?

    2. Cuibono

      the fact remains that any such determination relies on RELIABLE data.
      something sadly missing

      1. Aumua

        This really supersedes any other discussion about it, to be honest. As with so much of this pandemic, we don’t know because we don’t have trustworthy numbers.

  6. Amfortas the hippie

    regarding rich folks in the hamptons:

    this:”Blame the skeletal labor force on three factors: a lack of J-1 visas due to COVID that prevented the usual influx of workers from Eastern Europe and Ireland; the increasingly prohibitive cost of staff housing; and the lure of collecting enhanced federal unemployment benefits.”

    my spidey sense says the last one is likely bullshit entirely….at least in Texas…too hard to get unemployment, and the “stimulus” is hardly reason enough to forgo work.
    but it’s the first one that got me: they import desperate people from “eastern europe”?
    to serve them?
    why could that be, when there’s presumably a large reserve army of the unemployed right on their doorstep?

      1. Amfortas the hippie

        perhaps the Great God, Market(holy, holy) is trying to tell them something…

        eateries around here are still paying $9/hour for cooks….$2 and change plus tips to waitstaff.
        these are all mom and pops…the only corporate stores, here, are 2 dollar stores(one under construction not 200′ from the old one), and a gas station with a subway that is owned by a regional west texas corp.
        further towards civilisation i travel, the more $15 an hour signs i see…even at Mickey D’s.
        I hear about the owners of our greasy spoons complaining about the Help…or the lack thereof.
        they just don’t see the connection.
        2 of our local places are run by more left-leaning people, and they pay more, but have still enlisted their teenagers and grandmothers to help out.
        I, on the other hand, pay $13/hour, plus paid lunch and breaks(i provide all the consumables) for farmwork(pretty hard work, but if they can’t keep up with my crippled butt,lol…)…and can’t get anybody.(such labour is out of style with the highschool and college crowd, and at least 3 locals have started little companies that do stuff like this…land clearing, handyman, fencing…and they can pay more than i can afford(i’m a better boss, of course), and have cornered the labor force. they cater to rich folks and the wineries.)

        1. Geo

          My landlord, Fox News loving neighbor, and a Libertarian friend blame it on lazy people not wanting to work and just live off free government money. The manufactured consent is working well.

          1. Grant

            We have been moving steadily to the right since Reagan and long-term social, economic and environmental trends are horrible and worsening. I would love for any of them to defend the real world impacts of the things they favor. But, silly of me to expect libertarians and people that watch Fox to have arguments based in objective reality. But, if the landlord wanted to talk about unearned income, maybe have them consult the classical economists like Ricardo on land rent. Or JS Mill, who Geo is quoting. Why should land rent go to the landlord? Would be fun to hear them try to make the argument. A property is close to economic development, the community realizes some development that shows up in appreciating land prices, why should something the community created go to landlords? Should it not be returned to the community? All other things being equal, could it not lead to taxes declining in municipal and county jurisdictions if there was a land tax?

          2. lordkoos

            It’s much easier to place blame than it is to solve problems, and blaming “the other” is always useful for the political class.

          3. Aumua

            I’m lazy af, I’ll admit it. I’ve been living off pandemic unemployment for over a year and loving it. But, now that’s ending so I’ll work again, but only because I HAVE to, not because I want to. I feel like most people are probably not as lazy as I am though.

            1. jonboinAR

              Family-blog work! I work at a job to pay my bills, that’s it. I’m very lucky. My job takes care of my needs nicely. If it didn’t I’d never cross the threshhold of the office. I’d help Amfortas string barbed wire, probably, help Yves’ mother unclog her toilet, but probably not for money. Count me amongst those too “lazy” to work for bread crumbs.

              1. Aumua

                Of course if there is personal meaning in it, then I’m glad to make all kinds of effort. And in all honesty I can say that although I love not having to work, there’s another side to it too. My mental and emotional health has not been the greatest in the past year.

          4. Pelham

            That’s a line repeated on Fox News, one that cuts to the heart of what’s supposed to be a developing conservative populism. On the one hand, conservatives are enamored of good ol’ hard-working Americans. But then, in the current labor shortage, they turn on a dime and accuse us of being lazy bums. I should think that among the many minds on that end of the spectrum, at least one would see the contradiction and try to work around it. But no.

        2. Mildred Montana

          @amfortas the hippie:

          “…such labour [farmwork] is out of style with the highschool and college crowd…”

          You can say that again. I worked in a cherry orchard thirteen years ago and the owner often hired young people. I asked him how many of them turned out to be good long-term employees and he said 1 in a 100. I was surprised by his answer and thought he was just being cynical.

          Until one day a new hire shows up for his first day. He was a young man in his early twenties.

          Owner: “I’m going to show you how to prune a cherry tree.” (He leans a twelve-foot ladder against the trunk of a tree, hands the young man a set of pruners, and motions for him to start climbing the ladder.)

          Young man: “Sorry, I don’t do heights.” Nothing more.

          The owner and I looked at each other in disbelief. Then he just shrugged and said to him, “Okay, go to the office and collect your four-hours pay.” (mandated by law). And that was the last we saw of him.

          Just one example, I know, but there were many others. They at least managed to last a few hours or a few days.

    1. Isotope_C14

      I’d consider waiting tables in the Hamptons for 2K/week.

      Thats about 3-4x more than I could make as a scientist there, unfortunately Germany gives us affordable healthcare which is a little more precious during a pandemic considering the hospitalization costs stateside, seeing as a broken arm can bankrupt you.

      1. The Rev Kev

        Add to that that life in a small German city can be very pleasant indeed with lots of beautiful countryside to visit.

        1. Isotope_C14

          I’m in a big one.

          Life would be worse in the US almost anywhere, though I miss Chicago often.

          Not sure why, but there is an awful lot of white powder here in the kid’s noses. I’ve been asked if I want to buy “Weiss” – while walking on my way home to work. I guess the C Y A is more interested in Euros.

          1. CoryP

            At least presumably there the Weiss doesn’t have surprise fentanyl in it!

            Though I guess on the plus side here, it has given my non-opioid-using friends a good reason to stop using drugs entirely.

            Still the contamination issue makes me angry in the way false-advertising buyer-beware markets do.

            1. Acacia

              Also beware the surprise added white powder from finely crushed fluorescent tubes, scavenged from an office dumpster. The Man really doesn’t care about the purity of what you consume.

            1. Isotope_C14

              When the fella who asked saw my confusion he switched to koke, his complexion implied not originally from Germany. I’ll ask the guy I know if this is normal. He calls a number and a taxi shows up for his fix. The taxi is normally a black sedan no less than 2 years old.

    2. jsn

      Interestingly, the only people I know in Texas who have recieved the “enhanced federal unemployment benefits” are rich kids who would, in summers, take jobs like those on offer in the Hamptons. These kids are masters of system gaming and form filling.

      This could be an example of canabilistic give aways to the rich.

      It would be interesting to see middle aged “townies” waiting on the Upper Manhattan refugees in the Hamptons, the super rich might learn something. But the townies benefit from real estate values and hate the supper rich too much to serve them, at least that was the case 10 years ago when my college friend still taught history at the local public school in South Hampton.

  7. The Rev Kev

    “In unprecedented move, China tells US what it must do to repair relations”

    I can guess what this is all about. A U.S. State Department spokesperson said that when U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman went to China, that the US will be dealing with them from a position of strength and solidarity. To me, that is a reference to all the naval units they they are bring to the Indo-Pacific theater from the Quad and NATO. That and all the countries that the US is trying to marshal into an anti-China league. if Alaska proved nothing else, it proved that the Chinese will no longer be content to be treated as a supplicant and an inferior nation. Those days are gone but instead of trying to treat China as a peer (or near peer) nation, they are ramping up the pressure to try to get them to break and give them concessions while ignoring China’s own demands. The idiocy of the Trump years in dealing with China is now being extended and ramped up in the Biden years and it will all end in tears.

    1. Synoia

      Who could have known that shipping manufacturing to China would be so beneficial to China and destructive to the US? /s

      Destroying US Labor’a power was the objective and it worked. Pity about the side effects.

      1. Left in Wisconsin


        What I can’t figure out is if the “big state” (but in this case not very deep) really thinks the US can “handle” China, the source from where we get the largest portion of our stuff and by extension the largest portion of the (non-QE) global surplus, using the venerable cold-war Russia/USSR model – and simply have yet to be informed by the global corporate class that that’s not going to work – or if all of this is simply theater, which the GCC is content to allow to go on as it provides a suitable distraction from the real issues.

        1. NotTimothyGeithner

          Orientalism is the guiding light of the US foreign policy elites. They may sober up when they investigate a situation closely but when its still on the drawing board they full expect the locals to welcome them like the World War II cargo cults.

          It might even explain Putin’s statements on Biden after their meetings. Despite Biden being an idiot, Biden removed from the usual Foreign Policy trash was simply more reasonable.

      2. lance ringquist

        bill clinton was clearly warned, he ignored civil society, and handed communist china over 200 years of american wealth: As for those who speculated that China would change and move onto a different path upon its WTO accession, … that was their wishful thinking.

        bill clinton knew ahead of time that the chinese communist party would rape the american middle class, and he did it anyways: its own analysis suggests that, after China enters the WTO, the U.S. trade deficit with China will expand, not contract. The contradiction between the Administration’s claims and its own economic analysis makes it impossible to take seriously its economic argument for giving China permanent trade concessions.

        clintons own advisors warned him a economic disaster would be the direct result of his free trade policies, he ignored them, and sold us out to the chinese communist party, and we reached that disaster by 2008.

        The High Cost of the China-WTO DealAdministration’s own analysis suggests spiraling deficits, job losses
        Report By Robert E. Scott February 1, 2000
        Issue Brief #137
        The High Cost of the China-WTO Deal
        Administration’s own analysis suggests spiraling deficits, job losses
        by Robert E. Scott

        “another democratic insider says the truth, bill clinton knew what the results of his free trade policies would do, and he did it anyways,
        Democrats have long known that trade theory and trade reality are two different things, and that our trading system needs reform.

        Trump’s presidency is at least in part the product of exasperated workers who’ve been left behind by globalization. If that fundamental unfairness isn’t addressed, he won’t be the last president elected on a platform of blowing up the system.”

        President Trump’s Tariffs Are Not Really The Point
        By Stan Sorscher,
        August 8, 2018
        | Educate!…

        1. drumlin woodchuckles

          Why did Clinton do it? Well, obviously part of his motivation was the millions of dollars he expected to get paid for doing it after leaving office.

          But I think there is another reason too. I remember reading that he and Hillary were McGovern volunteers in the 1972 election. I remember reading about how the massive re-election of Nixon “broke Clinton’s heart”. So I think Clinton nourished a grudge against all those high paid union-member workers who voted for Nixon, and he fed and matured that grudge into a deep and abiding hatred for union-member workers.

          So when he became President, he saw a chance to destroy the lives of millions of the kind of people who had “broken his heart” by voting for Nixon some twenty years before. He would bring America into a Free Trade system designed to exterminate industry throughout America and destroy all the unions full of all those Nixon voters. Free Trade was Clinton’s revenge against the working class for “breaking Clinton’s heart” by voting for Nixon.

          But of course the money was nice too. Lets not forget the money. Of course Clinton was in it for the money too.

    2. NotTimothyGeithner

      The Pivot to Pacific started with Obama. Knocking out ends of the New Silk Road too. Waiting out for a routine political change isn’t a strategy anymore.

      This is stark for the Chinese. I imagine the US behavior in Anchorage must have been beyond the pale which involved openly insulting guests, but I suspect it was much worse.

    3. Procopius

      The idiocy with China actually goes back to 1949, when the State Department, under pressure from the Republicans, fired everybody who had knowledge of China or experience there. During Vietnam nobody with knowledge of or experience in Asia was allowed anywhere near policy making. They don’t seem to have any knowledge of how much the Chinese resented the humiliations they suffered under the “unequal treaties” from the 19th Century. Now their GDP is larger than ours, on a Purchasing Power Parity basis, and they have a few hundred nuclear warheads and ICBMs. Madeleine Albright asked once, “What’s the use of having the most powerful military in the world if you can’t use it?” Yeah, good question.

    4. drumlin woodchuckles

      The DC FedRegime may not succeed in marshalling these countries into an anti-China league. Because America is so far away and China is right there.

      But China will succeed in making them all hate China all by itself. As it builds its Illegal West Bank Settlement-style fake islands all over the China Seas in preparation to strip fish every last fish out of the water and strip drill every last barrel of oil and puff of gas from the sea floor, it will inspire bitter resentment and hatred from all the neighbor nations whose resources it strong-arm steals in broad daylight. I don’t know what they will do about it.

      As China continues locking up and withholding all the water that falls on Tibet and prevents that water from reaching the South and SouthEast Asian rivers with any useful regularity, these countries too will learn to hate China.

      China will be surrounded by enemies created by its own loutish greed and Middle Kingdom Superiority Complex. And America will be long ago and far away by that time.

      I suspect Myanmar is a population to watch. When CommuNazi China helps the Tatmadaw get the population totally crushed, will that population try destroying every CommuNazi Chinese asset in Myanmar as its last act of defiance? If it does, that would be a template for neo-colonized Asian resistance to NeoImperialist China.

  8. The Rev Kev

    “The return of Britain’s meat-eating plants”

    Don’t be put off by the title. It is actually a fascinating story and features this 25 year-old guy named Joshua Styles who is doing his part to re-wild parts of Britain. Has lots of good images as well. For any interested, the guy has a twitter account that shows his work and I wish that there were more people like him-

    I just hope that in introducing meat-eating plants, that he does not try to bring in the exotic species triffidus celestus.

    1. lordkoos

      “The Day of the Triffids” was the first science fiction film that I saw in a theater and I still have a strong memory of it… I was 11 years old at the time.

  9. Katniss Everdeen

    RE: Conflicting school mask guidance sparks confusion The Hill

    jeezus h. christ. After 18 months of this shit show, they can’t even come to some sort of consensus on masks.

    Biden’s chief medical adviser, Anthony Fauci, said on Tuesday that parents should do “what is locally asked for” in terms of masking students in schools.

    I can see why this guy–dr. “science”–is “not only the highest paid doctor in the federal government, but the highest paid out of all four million federal employees.” When the system demands maximum confusion and obfuscation, fauci is ever so willing to step into the breach, amp it up, and call it “expertise.”

    Truly shameless, craven toadies are hard to find. When you get a good one, you pay him well because you never know when you’re gonna need him to throw a monkey wrench into something.

    1. Lambert Strether

      > After 18 months of this shit show, they can’t even come to some sort of consensus on masks

      What baffles me:

      The liberal Democrats got muscled by/can’t work out a messaging strategy for/agree with regarding “freedom”/want suburban Republican votes the anti-mask minority and allow them to drive policy, ruling out a mask mandate.

      How on earth do they imagine they will be able to oppose a mandate on vaccines, especially when the vaccines haven’t been approved by the FDA?

      It make no sense, no sense at all.

  10. Tom Stone

    If you haven’t read Daniel Hale’s complete letter I urge you to do so.
    Like Chelsea Manning, Hale is an Idealist and a Romantic who bought the Bullshit they were fed growing up.
    As I did.
    Pain has granted him eloquence
    I was nearly 12 years old before I had recovered enough to turn the pages of a book without tearing it ( Spasticity as a result of WEEV I contracted in 1959).
    The first Book I bought was a copy of the California State Constitution and the US Constitution, at the Holmes Book Store on 14th St in Oakland.
    I paid $.10 for it, one dime.
    I was proud to be an American, where the Oath was to “Defend the Constitution against all enemies Foreign and Domestic”.

    Then Vietnam.
    And Cointelpro, Con Son Island, The Pentagon Papers…
    The Pike and Church Committee reports and a copy of Alfred McCoy’s book picked up at Shakespeare and Co bookstore for $1 in 1973.
    I remember “The first one on my block to come home in a box”.
    All the lies,all the corruption, all the dead.

    And it has steadily grown worse since then, when Habeas Corpus was revoked in the 2016 NDAA the pretense that the USA was “A Nation of Laws and not Men” was abandoned.
    With wide Bi Partisan support.

    I admire the moral courage it has taken for Hale to admit the shameful and horrifying acts he and so many others committed, facing reality after being so expertly conditioned to believe a lie since you were a child is not something many can do.
    It hurts.

    1. Verifyfirst

      I’m pretty sure I can’t bear to read Daniel Hale’s letter. I have been thinking about the statement Mike Gravel apparently made after reading the Pentagon Papers into the Congressional record (below from The Nation obituary):

      “The senator proceeded to read from the documents until around 1 AM. At that point, a physically exhausted Gravel said he could go on no more. But before he finished, Gravel read from an address he had hoped to deliver on the Senate floor that night.

      ‘People, human beings, are being killed as I speak to you tonight. Killed as a direct result of policy decisions that we as a body have made,” Gravel said, as he wept and wiped away tears. “Arms are being severed, metal is crashing through human bodies because of a public policy this government—” He broke off, overcome with emotion. “One may respond that we made such a sacrifice to preserve freedom and liberty in Southeast Asia. One may respond that we sacrifice ourselves on the continent of Asia so that we will not have to fight a similar war on the shores of America. One can make these arguments only if he has failed to read the Pentagon Papers. That is the terrible truth of it all. The papers do not support our public statements. The papers do not support our best intentions.’”

      Nothing has changed since then. Except the weapons have become more devastating. So depressing.

  11. CanChemist

    Thanks NC for continuing to cover the reality of covid/delta instead of the latest round of wishful thinking. The emerging Israeli data is certainly a game changer.

    I wanted to post an interesting thread from Imgrund on the math behind delta transmission and why this strain is so problematic:
    “One reason we are “still in this thing” is because you’re infectious while in the incubation period (i.e. presymptomatic phase). This can lead to presymptomatic transmission – which happens, with Delta, 65% of the time…”

  12. Henry Moon Pie

    Bob Moses, civil rights and anti-war activist, has died at 86.

    I do not remember Moses from those days but learned about him through my acquaintance with Staughton and Alice Lynd. Moses, Lynd and David Dellinger led the first anti-war march in D. C. in 1965, something the NPR article about Moses’s death manages to miss. Moses and Lynd were also among the leaders of the Mississippi Freedom Summer, and when they learned of the disappearance of the three civil rights workers, Chaney, Schwerner and Goodman, Moses and Lynd led the group assembled for training in Ohio in the singing of “Kumbaya.” Afterward, without any formal meeting, people began volunteering to respond to the crisis, e.g. Stokely Carmichael leading a group to work through the “backwoods” to see what they could learn.

    1. Dave in Austin

      So Bob Moses is dead. Too late to nominate him for the Nobel Peace Prize, I guess.

      He went south as a real rarity in the early 1960s: Black; married with kids; an advanced degree and a great future; older than most of the kid-volunteers. Almost immediately in a world of screaming libs, ex-1930s communists, self-centered existentialists, sex tourists, would-be revolutionaries and terrified but determinedBlack locals he stood out because of his calmness, humanity and thoughtfulness. As someone else involved told me “Sometimes he was the only adult in the room and we all knew it”.

      Then, more unusual, he stayed and founded the Algebra Project in Alabama becaused he believed- rightly- that a math and science education would be needed by the poor and usually Black kids in blackbelt Alabama. I never hear of him raising money or seeking publicity for the Project, but I occasionally sent him a check.

      I hope his wife and kids are doing well and understand what a wonderful man he was.

      1. psv

        Thanks Dave and Henry for this information, I had never heard of him. I read the NPR bio and he seemed to have lived an exemplary life. I found the Algebra Project particularly interesting, and a great way of bettering children’s lives.

        1. newcatty

          Yes, me too. Wonderful to hear of a person who had the true life of an ” unsung hero”.

  13. The Rev Kev

    “Medicare for All Advocates Take to the Streets of Over 50 US Cities”

    Cori Bush turned up for it. But there is a lot of criticisms by people saying who should have been there but never turned up. While the marches were going on, Nina Turner and AOC held a competing campaign event at the same time which sounds as bad as it was. I read that the Justice Democrats did not turn up either which makes them Just Democrats. You would think that with a nation-wide event like this, it would have been a good opportunity for progressives to attend and give speeches for Medicare for All which they say that they support.

    1. zagonostra

      There are certain key planks for the Dems, M4A is one. Overturning Roe v. Wade is one for the Repubs. Neither party want these issues resolved in their favor. It’s what makes me a cynic to the bone when it comes to U.S. MSM political discourse. Justice Democrats are indeed Just Democrats…

      1. JacobiteInTraining

        In the wacky alternate universe i sometimes go to when really baked, Roe vs. Wade was overturned. This put the ‘Fear of God’ into ‘Ds’, & ‘I’s’ who realized not voting can have consequences, and so they voted in greater & greater numbers in every election thenceforth….while the ‘R’s’ single-issue voters were satisfied, finally, that their prayers were answered and stopped voting exclusively based on abortion.

        Subsequently, a wave of interest from both sides caused M4A to be passed, along with a series of common-sense bills dealing with all sorts of issues that helped the plebs, dealt with a bunch of issues common to Rs, Is, Ds, and…well…plain old ‘mericans….leading to yet more progress in stopping the war mongers, reining in big business of all kinds, and a new era of amicable progress for all.

        And then the surprise 20-km-wide asteroid on an oblique orbit penetrated the atmosphere and vaporized much of the northern and southern hemispheres leading to complete human extinction.

        And then I woke up.

    2. Left in Wisconsin

      Among the saddest effects of neoliberalism is the almost complete domination of what passes for the left in this country by the non-profit industrial complex. Clearly, the MfA marches this past weekend were declared off-limits by that complex, and that was that.

      But I wish it were as simply as declaring the “funded left” part of the opposition to be overcome, and working from there. They have a megaphone that we don’t (as witnessed by the total lack of coverage of this week’s events); it will of course be impossible to build a democratic voting majority without them; and even the vast majority of the non-NPIC left must know in their bones, even if this is rarely articulated, that we are nowhere near a revolutionary moment, and so incremental reform like MfA is about the most we can hope for.

      The fact that a no-brainer like MfA is still so far off is a good marker for how bad things are.

      1. hunkerdown

        We’re idiots for taking advice from the ruling class on how to overpower and remove them using their ball on their field. As a society, let’s stop doing this. Overcoming is not enough. We need to make every job in bourgeois politics hurt like Harris’ office times 100, so that they all quit. We need to ruin working conditions in an entire PMC profession. Until then, political engagement is going to have exactly the effect on power relations and living standards as if we were instead playing catch with the elites who have turned their cannon inward.

        And why not? They ruin careers for having wrong opinions. We can make their lives into a screeching hell if only we decided it was okay to hurt the feelings of those who dominate us.

      2. Lambert Strether

        > The fact that a no-brainer like MfA is still so far off is a good marker for how bad things are.

        That liberal Democrats managed to take MedicareForAll off the table in the midst of a pandemic when vaccines that were free at the point of care were a key part of the strategy shows where the strength was. As I kept saying, heading off #MedicareForAll was the #1 goal of liberal Democrats in 2020. They achieved it.

        It’s an overwhelming display of institutional strength (although the strength is relative. The Romanovs were strong, until they weren’t).

  14. Geo

    Re: “super evolutionary event”

    Too bad it’s Covid that’s evolving and not our societies which seem to be regressing. If we’re gonna make it another few decades we gotta evolve our noggins a lot faster!

  15. The Rev Kev

    “Couple’s anniversary dinner on river interrupted by cruise of nudists”

    Guess that they shouldn’t have ordered the meat and two veg.

    That is a great video clip showing that Black-crested Titmouse plucking fur from that sleeping fox by the way. You watch it and wonder if the fox is just going to lunge & snap at it but all it does is roll over. Amazing that.

    1. Old Jake

      Considering the time of year, likely the tit was collecting the underlayer of fur the fox was shedding. Short, fine, and fluffy; making it excellent nest-lining material, as illustrated in the last scene.

  16. chuck roast

    I loved the little Titmouse. I had a cat named Ozone. He would sit on the arm of the chair everyday and let me brush him. When the brush got full I would gather up the cat hair and attach it with a bread tie to the hummingbird feeder. The hummers thought it great for their nesting material.

    1. newcatty

      Neat, news we can use. My fluffy cat could supply lots of nesting material for our hummers. Will add it to our taking care of our relations.

  17. The Rev Kev

    “Now the world’s most famous medical journal the Lancet is accused of costing lives by sitting on a study showing human transmission of Covid-19 that was suppressed by China”

    This doesn’t sound right. I remember reading articles from early in 2020 about how the Chinese were saying that this virus was spread as an aerosol but it was ignored as the west did surface-cleaning theater instead. What proved it to me was an article about how this Chinese team went into a hotel room identifying where they could find virus particles and they said that they found it on air vents. And yet the WHO and the US CDC were ignoring this and only changed their minds when they were virtually forced to at gun point. But tens of thousands of people must have died through this refusal to consider the evidence. This Daily Mail article seems to be an attempt to re-write history and when they mentioned ‘China’s horrifying repression of Uighurs’ that confirmed it for me.

    1. K.k

      The Chinese scientists informed the world very early that there was human to human to transmission and masks would become absolutely necessary especially in the hospitals. In fact, I remember it from the Lancet. Dont have the bookmark handy.
      The idea that only if the Chinese would have let us know a week earlier things would be different is comical. It was jan. 23 when Wuhan, a city of over 10 million went into incredibly strict lockdown and was sealed off from the world and Hubei province, home to 60million went under varying restrictions. These measures at the time on the bbc for example were being described as typical over reaction of the ccp authoritarianism. In the u.s we just went on with life till March! That period before march we were being told by Wa Po to get a grip Merica , the flu kills more people. And if you weren’t at that market in Wuhan or in contact with someone at the market you have nothing to worry about. And of course , we should all know by now that this virus did not originate from that Wuhan market.

      From the article, “A key study by Southampton University found that if China had acted to lock down Wuhan even one week earlier, the number of cases would have been cut by two-thirds, significantly limiting Covid’s spread.”
      At this point we should all be well aware that the virus was in multiple countries well before January 2020. The way in which the virus spread in Italy for example, makes me think it was already percolating there for a while and Wuhan shutting down a week earlier would not matter much for Italy or the rest of the world.

        1. K.k

          Li Wenliang was not the person to inform the government about a potential novel pathogen on the loose. There was another physician who had brought this to the local government much earlier than Dr. Wenliang. When Dr. Wenliang brought his concerns to the local officials they informed him they were looking into it. Since at that point they were trying to figure out was going on they understandably did not want to cause an unnecessary panic and asked Wenliang not to discuss the matter with anyone yet. Dr. Wenliang told some other physicians that the virus maybe sars or mers which respectively kills 10% and 35% of the people it infects. And they started spreading this misinfo on social media. Obviously we now understand that was false and would have caused a massive panic if this new novel spreads like crazy and has such high fatality rate. The officials brought the Dr Wenliang down to the police station and had him basically sign an equivalent of a non disclosure form stating he would not spread rumors and he was wrong to do so. He was back working at the hospital the same day.

          Now i dont care for the way they treated the good doctor, but I do believe his case was used to build a narrative to paint the Chinese government in bad as light as possible. I will remind you that local officials who dragged their feet initially were all fired. And the central government took over.
          Please tell me who was held accountable in the u.s for the massive f ups that have lead to the deaths of over 600,000 people.

          1. K.k

            i meant to say in my response above the Dr Wenliang was not the FIRST doctor to inform the authorities. I missed the “first” in my first sentence in the response above.

  18. JEHR

    Re Antidote: That little titmouse is quite the bird and she knows exactly where to get the very best luxury fur for her nestlings!

    1. lordkoos

      I’ve been impressed as to how America’s billionaires have bravely stepped up in this time of crisis. /s

      1. newcatty

        Ha, think you win best comment for today. IMO. I don’t think stepping up, for say, into the “space ships” to play at “astronaut” count.

        1. chuck roast

          You must have misinterpreted those articles yesterday. The billionaires are stepping up with their monster sized egos to fill the void in space. A couple more of these guys and vacuum in space will disappear. They must be doing this as a public service.

  19. fresno dan

    I don’t know if I should share this.
    WARNING – contains reference to bowels, and blood. So be advised.
    So, I saw a cardiologist last week and he encouraged me to start taking my Xarelto prescription that my my general physician had prescribed. I had qualms – I have been prescribed two drugs now that ended up with Black Box warnings from FDA. I have been taking enteric coated baby aspirin for 26 years now, with no further heart attack and no stroke. I had a bad feeling about taking a blood thinner. Aspirin served me well, and a lot of drugs strike me as no more than a concerted effort at data mining.
    So I woke up in a couple of hours after going to sleep, and long story short, a bowel movement of blood (not with blood, essentially of blood)
    I’m sure for people with problems with aspirin, the new blood thinners may be a godsend. But the legions of detail men (drug salemen) convice doctors to prescribe the newest drug.
    I have managed to compose myself. I don’t feel bad, other than frightened. I hope if I discontinue it I will come back to a homeostatic equilibrium as far as blood clotting. My doctor’s office will be open soon.
    The post is just to give a counter balance to the incessant advertizing and PR blitz that modern pharmaceutical advertizing has – not only on patients, but physicians too. So no expressions of sympathy are necessary.

    1. JEHR

      fresno dan, I had a pulmonary embolism when I was 47 and was put on warfarin. I had to take a blood test every month. After a few years, I asked my doctor if I could use aspirin as a blood thinner. She agreed to that and I was successful in controlling blood clots for awhile. At 67 I had another embolism and went back on warfarin. My present doctor got tired of trying to figure out what dosage of warfarin I should have as my diet seemed to affect the way warfarin worked. She put me on xarelto which does not require any blood tests. That drug seems to work all right and my doctor just recently reduced the amount from 20 mg to 15 mg.

      I worry a lot about using blood thinners but it is better than having another PE. I understand your concern. I would have continued on aspirin (under doctor supervision) if I had not had another embolism.

    2. heresy101

      About 12 years ago, a killer gopher set a trap for me to fall off our wall and fracture my knee and break my tibia. I got and infection and compartment syndrome in the hospital and had to have a double leg fasciotomy on my right leg. That saved my leg after 7 weeks and six surgeries in Hotel Kaiser. The surgeon told me that blood circulation would be bad and that I would have to take an aspirin for the rest of my life to thin the blood. Enteric aspirin has helped me all these years without problem and I would be afraid to take Xarelto or other things.

      For those without a queasy stomach, here is what they do and cut in an fasciotomy:
      Compartment Syndrome

    3. Duke of Prunes

      Time for another medical anecdote. I had a natural artificial heart valve (formed from animal tissue) and sporadic a-fib. To avoid blood clots caused by the a-fib, I took a 325 mg aspirin. I was originally on warfarin, but talked the doctors down to aspirin since I was still relatively young (40s) and warfarin has some long term problems with internal bleeding.

      12 years go by, and my regular bi-annual echocardiogram identifies issues. Turns out my valve is worn out, but this is complicated by blood clots found in the heart. Eventually, surgery is required to replace the valve and clear out the blood clots. This surgery unintentionally fixed my a-fib (and intentionally fixed my heart valve), but now, because of my history of a-fib and clotting with aspirin, I’m stuck on warfarin and it’s required monthly blood test for perpetuity. I’m no longer a “youngster” so the risk/reward profile of warfarin, as explained by my cardiologist, is different than it was 10 years ago. Oh well, at least its reasonably inexpensive (and widely used so most “gotchas” have hopefully surfaced by now).

  20. campbeln

    From the HMO: Early vaccinees are twice as likely to catch COVID as later recipients article…

    People vaccinated before late February are twice as likely to catch the coronavirus than other inoculated Israelis, according to new research.

    This, coupled with IM Doc’s comment about his now recovering case:

    I was fully vaccinated in mid April.

    REALLY casts a long shadow over the usefulness of vaccines if 3-6 monthly boosters are necessary.

    Then mix in the possibility of Original Antigenic Sin (relevant IM Doc comment) and/or Antibody Dependent Enhancement

    1. Isotope_C14

      Ok, I’m not an expert immunologist, but the hallmarks of ADE don’t seem to be present. Those failed vaccine trials resulted IIRC in 40-100% MORTALITY in the animal models. At least that’s what I recall reading about it. Point it out if I’m wrong.

      I’m thinking it is totally something undiscovered. This is so typically human. We find the clever solution thinking we have all the answers, but we really just have a small amount of the puzzle and since the basic science isn’t done, someone “rolls the dice”.

      I suspect what we have here is a situation in which the initial immunological response is highly dependent on many components of the immune system working in tandem. A highly specific ratio of T cells, B cells, antibodies and macrophages are all completely regulated by the millions of years adapted immune system to not only protect from outside invaders, but also prevent auto-immune conditions.

      What if just *forcing* the body to make way more antibodies than has ever happened in our evolution is the answer? The homeostasis of the body is carefully regulated. Perhaps that’s why we see the early post-vaccination spike in new cases for that short period, and what appears now to be rapidly waning vaccine efficacy after 4-6 months?

      If the initial antibody response is forced, perhaps the other components of the immune system don’t recognize it correctly and adapt themselves appropriately.

      The best analogy I could come up with was that our army suddenly had a whole lot of privates and there were no corporals or staff sergeants to direct them, and as typical with privates, they wen’t out drinking for a while and went AWOL.

      Where’s GM when you need ’em?

      1. Skunk

        It may be too early to say definitively whether there is ADE. Didn’t IM Doc mention that in his small town sample (not scientific) that hospitalized vaccinated patients were sicker than hospitalized non-vaccinated patients after breathroughs? This set off a few possible alarm bells. Possibly there hasn’t been enough genetic divergence yet with SARS-CoV-2 to result in obvious ADE when a patient is infected with different strains. Hopefully this won’t happen, but some coronaviruses do exhibit ADE.

    2. John k

      Israeli numbers show average of 26%/month decay of immunity over 6 months, just 9% decay/month over 3 months. They mention confounding factors such as earlier jabs went to older people, still seems decay accelerates over time. They’re already asking for booster.
      I’m back in caution mode.
      And kids back in school soon, which used to coincide with flu season.

    3. Cuibono

      as long as severe outcomes are prevented, we can live with this.
      IF severe outcome efficacy begins to fail, then it is time to worry.
      but what sense do vaccine mandates make in this scenario. Israel data seems to say that the vaccine is about protecting NUMERO UNO

      1. JTMcPhee

        Long COVID is not a “severe outcome?” What percent of infected persons develop these wide varieties of debility? How many still shed the viruses after
        “Recovery?” Maybe YOU can live with this, if you don’t happen to be infected and develop the long-COVID morbidities. 7.5 billion? Not so much.

        Prevention of infection seems to me the only viable means of ending the pandemic, and that is clearly not a possible or even desired goal for the political economy where money flows to Pharma and so many will not and cannot enclose themselves in a bubble or even just use the goddam masks and minimal social distancing. And of course the airborne aerosol virus can leak into any little crack or opening (I almost thought “chink,” but that word is troublesome) in one’s shell.

  21. Katniss Everdeen

    RE: HMO: Early vaccinees are twice as likely to catch COVID as later recipients Times of Israel and Feigl-Ding tweet

    Back in February, pfizer ceo albert bourla told cnbc that “Israel has become world’s lab right now.”

    (Of course, he also said that ” ‘A lot of indicators’ tell us vaccine provides ‘protection against the transmission’ of coronavirus,” so a grain of salt would not be out of order.)

    At any rate, it seems reasonable to assume that as goes israel, so goes the u.s., so I feel confident in saying that “boosters4all” are a comin’. I wonder how that will affect those who haven’t yet been vaccinated and, possibly more importantly, the parents of younger children who look to become “vaccine-eligible” in the near future. Not to mention those who just got 2 jabs and now are being told they need at least one more.

    The big vax push began in earnest in the u.s. in January of this year–7 months ago. To be considered “fully vaccinated” with the 2-shot mRNA regimen, it takes 6 weeks–4 weeks between shots and then 2 more weeks. It looks as if that gets you roughly 6 months of “protection” that wanes over those 6 months, before you need a “booster,” supposedly of the same stuff. Nobody knows what the side effects of the booster will be, or how long its effects will last.

    You gotta wonder how “persuaded” the heretofore “unpersuaded” will be now that they’re starin’ down the barrel of three shots instead of two, and you don’t have to get too far out on a limb to expect questions about whether more shots after that will be needed.

    1. Amfortas the hippie

      yeah…i got mine in april…and have been expecting this.
      but, as i’ve been saying, how are they gonna do that when they can’t even get the shot to people who want it?
      (i admit that i don’t know how it’s going in the big cities in texas…and i assume it’s going better in non-texas/more civilised places)
      clinic people one county over told wife and son that they’ll get their second dose on such and such a day and time “…if available…”,lol.
      they made the appointment, but clinic people aren’t promising that they’ll actually have the second shot.
      putting Bob the Cat in charge would render better results than this(Bob the Cat doesn’t want to talk about it, however)

    2. HotFlash

      Dr John Campbell crunched some numbers comparing Israel’s vax data to data from the UK, concludes timing of second dose might have an effect, specifically longer time to second shot may be much better. More research (and better record keeping) indicated.

      1. Katniss Everdeen

        Call me crazy, but I’d think at least the timing of doses should have been worked out before proclaiming this “vaccine” the magic covid bullet.

        This guy is a very fast talker–so fast that at one point he confused himself. But I’m pretty sure he says that, as the effects of the “vaccine” wane, the VACcinated will be infecting the UNVACcinated!


        1. HotFlash

          Why yes. But, timing and dosage is supposed to be worked out in phase I testing. But there was no time, so liability waived and full speed ahead. Phase III what’s that?

    3. Carolinian

      I’ve seen a poll saying the vast majority of the still unvaccinated have no intention of getting vaccinated. Only a few said it was because they haven’t yet gotten around to it. It would be different if the vax was “sterilizing” and the government could then claim that the holdouts were preventing an end to Covid.

      But that’s never been true and therefore concerns about vax risks become legitimate if it isn’t going to solve the problem anyway. Meanwhile the vaxxed are now walking around without masks and gathering in crowds and getting Covid and may be spreading far more disease than those holdouts.

      I’m not sure there’s anything we flyovers can do but throw up our hands, look to our own and our family’s safety and wait it out. All the talk about forcing people to get shots is just noise–they’ll never do that although your employer might. It sounds like, though, the vaccine bubble may be about to pop.

      1. Jason Boxman

        We’ll see what happens; Once the vaccines are given the regular approval from the FDA, all kinds of vaccination requirements by employers and public institutions might become possible or more feasible than with an EUA. Colleges require proof of all kinds of vaccinations, for example.

        Given widespread vaccination isn’t going to eliminate the virus and annual boosters seem almost a foregone conclusion at this point, I’m skeptical vaccine uptake will ever improve over what happens annually with the flu vaccine.

        It’s going to be a bizarre next couple of years/decade/lifetime.

    4. campbeln

      Relevant comment from IM Doc earlier this month that’s kept me up at night:

      It’s hard to find anything studying this because there is none – we have not had enough time.

      But one of the problems with mRNA technology in these vaccines is indeed there will likely be a more vigorous immune response every time they are given making the number of reactions even higher – and this seems to be higher the younger you go.

      Studies are already underway on the mRNA booster – and unofficially via friends that are recruiting patients – things are not going so well at all. Many many more are getting very sick. Also, please note that in some of the arms of these protocols – there is a repeat of the two shot process – so you actually are giving people a 3rd shot followed a month later by a 4th. Unofficially, according to my reliable sources, the number of people turning down the 4th shot is astronomically elevated – the 3rd shot reaction is just that bad. All of these subjects have already had a 1st and 2nd shot earlier this year.

      Again – this is why something like an inhaled nasal vaccine may be a much better modality.

      This has all been so rushed – it is quite a quagmire right now.

        1. Michaelmas

          I’m long nasal modalities.

          You are right to be. There’s a few more being developed than the ones mentioned here the other day.

          By the way, true story: the head of Flagship Pioneering, the biotech VC firm that created Moderna, banged on the table and shouted, “I will never allow Moderna’s technology to be used as a vaccine!” when the idea was first proposed to him, entirely contrary to stories now being presented like this one —

          Of course, once the government made the market for Moderna to the tune of multiple billions, he changed his tune. (As many know by now, it was meant to be a high-end, big-ticket personalized medical treatment for cancer and such.)

      1. Katniss Everdeen

        I’ve been trying to educate myself on Antibody Dependent Enhancement (ADE), which is, apparently, a known, not well understood, historical problem with “major” responsibility for the failures in previous coronavirus vaccine trials.

        While I cannot vouch for “Dr. Doug,” this explainer of the issue is an easy to read and well-footnoted place to start IMHO. “Dr. Doug” says:

        For a vaccine to work, our immune system needs to be stimulated to produce a neutralizing antibody, as opposed to a non-neutralizing antibody. A neutralizing antibody is one that can recognize and bind to some region (‘epitope’) of the virus, and that subsequently results in the virus either not entering or replicating in your cells.

        A non-neutralizing antibody is one that can bind to the virus, but for some reason, the antibody fails to neutralize the infectivity of the virus. This can occur, for example, if the antibody doesn’t bind tightly enough to the virus, or the percentage of the surface area of the virus covered by the antibody is too low, or the concentration of the antibody is not high enough. Basically, there is some type of generic binding of the antibody to the virus, but it fails to neutralize the virus.

        In some viruses, if a person harbors a non-neutralizing antibody to the virus, a subsequent infection by the virus can cause that person to elicit a more severe reaction to the virus due to the presence of the non-neutralizing antibody. This is not true for all viruses, only particular ones. This is called Antibody Dependent Enhancement (ADE), and is a common problem with Dengue Virus, Ebola Virus, HIV, RSV, and the family of coronaviruses. In fact, this problem of ADE is a major reason why many previous vaccine trials for other coronaviruses failed. Major safety concerns were observed in animal models. If ADE occurs in an individual, their response to the virus can be worse than their response if they had never developed an antibody in the first place.

        He goes on to describe what could happen as the effects of the mRNA vaccine wane over time, and the vaccinated human is challenged with a wild, possibly mutated, coronavirus.

        And, make of this what you will, I also ran across this, from an israeli “citizen scientist,” for whom I also cannot vouch, but who reports, alarmingly: (also extensively footnoted)

        Can ADE be avoided by repeat vaccinations?….

        The Prime Minister [of israel] has announced in recent days in the media that due to the problem of lowering the level of antibodies after medical treatment [pfizer jabs], there is a real possibility that the recipients of the treatment will have to take the treatment every six months for their entire lives. This material fact was not revealed by the respondents to the recipients of the medical treatment before receiving it, but only now in retrospect, when the treatment cannot be stopped due to the phenomenon known as ADE, which endangers the lives of patients if they do not take the vaccine every six months.

        1. Yves Smith

          GM says scientists and the medical community are very aware of ADE risk. So far, there is no evidence of any. That does not mean it can’t start happening at some point.

          1. Amfortas the hippie

            i’ve been too busy with my chaos to pay much attention and/or run this down…but, given that the consensus seems to be that boosters will be needed…what’s the status of all the non-mRNA vaccines?
            only non-mRNA i ever hear about in my recently limited newsgathering is J&J…but little about it’s efficacy/side effects/etc. the rest are either made by “enemies”, or have disappeared from usapravda.
            i was leery of the mRNA’s from go…too new, felt like they were thumbing the scale…but only choice i was given was Moderna(without incident, and so far so good).Youngest was only given the choice of Pfizer(again, so far so good).
            (and admittedly, my aversion to the Pfizer one is due to my long term distrust of them in general, after all my healthcare research frenzy during obama’s first term..posterchild for bigpharma corruption)
            I’d love to have an old fashioned killed virus vaccine, instead…especially if we’re gonna hafta get a new shot every year.
            shall i pencil in a cuba trip for this winter?

          2. campbeln

            IM Doc has said as much on July 9 but Robert W Malone has raised some concerns re: ADE on his twitter feed (though, seemingly, no barns burning).

            It’s one of the few places of divergence I’ve seen between IM Doc and a wider net I have cast on Twitter to follow the vaccines.

    5. lordkoos

      Having had a difficult reaction to the second Pfizer shot, I’m not that keen on getting the booster. Must the booster be from the same manufacturer as the original vaccine, does anyone know? So far I’m not hearing much concrete information about any of this.

      1. JEHR

        In our family, one son had two shots of the same vaccine; another son and daughter had one shot of one vaccine and the second shot of a different vaccine; my husband and I had two different mRNA shots. So there you have it. Mix and match like crazy. It’s the Canadian way!!!

  22. Tom Stone

    Dan, drug reactions are individual, Xarelto worked well for me until the Co Pay increased by $396 overnight.
    Even assuming the drug trials are legit ANY medication may work extremely well for you, have little or no affect or you may have adverse reactions of varying severity.
    I have experienced all three outcomes with common drugs both over the counter and prescription.
    And when any course of treatment is suggested by a medical professional it is wise to do due diligence and in light of your individual circumstances place your bet.
    I’m glad to see you doing that.

  23. FreeMarketApologist

    Coexisting with the Coronavirus” — Good article, well worth reading.

    News out today that Pfizer and other pharmas are working on various treatment therapies for COVID (for the freshly afflicted), as well as plans for booster shots. The administration is also signaling that booster shots are in everybody’s future as well.

    At some point, we’ll have boxes of COVID medicine on the grocery store shelves, just as we have ‘flu remedies’. COVID will be making a lot of people very wealthy in the next 20 years, if it doesn’t kill them first.

    1. Jason Boxman

      But it doesn’t mention long-COVID anywhere; It’s a common enough outcome that endemic COV-SARS-2 isn’t exactly going to be a picnic. If one possible outcome is lifelong disability, who would gamble that? I won’t.

      1. Michaelmas

        Indeed, it doesn’t mention Long COVID, though it is a reasonably intelligent piece for a change.

        I saw a paper back in January that showed that segments of the virus crossed the blood-brain barrier in mice models, although there’s no fully conclusive studies that say that’s the case in humans yet, AFAIK. Big deal, if true.

    2. cnchal

      What if the booster shots start to kill? That business plan goes out the window.

      How long before the idiocy of masks off, rears it’s ugly head?

      So what if one is vaccinated. It can be caught, you can transmit it to someone else and it has the potential to kill or maim you long term.

  24. Jason Boxman

    An interesting tale that leaves out long-COVID. And I still consider this pandemic enough of a material threat that I capitalize it. Silently in the past six months, it became just covid for some reason.

    Long-COVID is the game changer that makes the “just part of flu-season” scenario a kind of nightmare. (Long-COVID does not appear in the entire lengthy New Yorker article, in fact.)

    Coexisting with the Coronavirus from The New Yorker:

    In a world with endemic covid, you might catch the virus, or get vaccinated, as a kid, then get a booster with your flu shot every year. There will probably be covid seasons, like flu seasons, in the winter; every few years, as new variants accumulate, a season might be especially bad. You will probably get covid once every few years, too. Sometimes it will be mild, and you’ll cough and feel tired for a day or two, as with any common cold; these brushes with the virus will strengthen your immune resistance. Sometimes an infection will be worse. Maybe you skipped your booster shot that year, or there’s a new variant on the rise; maybe you were exposed to a lot of the virus when you spent time with a friend or co-worker who was sick. Whatever the reason, some infections may put you in bed for a week or more. As you get older, and your immune system weakens, the chance of complications will increase, as it does with the flu. If you grow more vulnerable, you might consider becoming more cautious about travelling or going out when a bad covid season is in full swing—you might even wear a mask. (Perhaps the pandemic will have inspired you to wear one to avoid the flu, too.) The virus will stay with us, but widespread immune resistance will have dampened its worst effects.

  25. Milton

    The titmouse video took a nice turn. For a moment there, I thought the bird had waited for the fox to expire…

    So the professional right of center (they ain’t left) is having a crisis as they don’t know how to react to conservative groups providing aid and other assistance for those affected by the floods last week in cental Europe and Germany in particular.

    SNIP…An investigation by a team of reporters on the ground for the news weekly Der Spiegel found that social media channels operated by the so-called Querdenker (lateral thinker) organisation, which includes vaccination opponents and preppers (people who prepare for catastrophic events), have put out calls for helpers to travel to Ahrweiler in Rhineland-Palatinate, one of the worst-hit areas.

    According to the report, the groups say help is needed because official organisations such as the fire brigade, police, the army and the voluntary Technisches Hilfswerk (THW) brigade are failing to provide sufficient help and are even hindering attempts by volunteers to get to the scene.

    On top of clean-up operations, the groups are reportedly offering to help with childcare and delivering medicines and warm food.
    God forbid! We can’t allow any suffering easing by those in the “other” classes, especially by deplorable groups who are incapable of enriching themselves in an appropriate manner.

  26. drumlin woodchuckles

    Maybe supporters of “Medicare” for all should change their name for it. Maybe they should call it “Canadacare” for all.

    1. hunkerdown

      Canada isn’t the US. Therefore we’re too good for it.

      You have to relate everything back to the local deities. Perhaps rebrand national health insurance as a “bumper-to-bumper extended warranty that actually delivers (unlike United and other fly-by-night operations)” and just soak the whole thing in facile car metaphor and corny puns.

      1. Amfortas the hippie

        and chicks with bikinis…this is amurca, dernit.
        make it like a bud lite commercial, and we’ll reach about half of my county.

  27. jonboinAR

    This above was a “reply fail” meant to go under Grant’s post above discussing the human tendency to keep our heads in the sand making us ignore the signs that climate change there may well cause civilizational collapse and true societal destruction.

  28. newcatty

    Brings to mind stories about the Black Panthers setting up schools, kitchens supplied with foods, health care clinics for the poor in their neighborhoods. The Young Lords in NYC did the same thing, which basically was to help poor Puerto Rican neighborhoods. Many church ( especially liberal Catholic) affiliated social service organizations did the same thing in lower, or poor, income neighborhoods. We all know how those “others” were regarded by the PTB.

  29. Still Above Water

    I was wondering why I hadn’t seen any stories on Google News about the crisis in India for the last few weeks, so I went to 91-divoc and looked at the infection rates. After the precipitous rise that we all heard about, there was an equally precipitous fall. It looks like they’re getting it under control. Great news! So why isn’t this news? From what I can tell, they’ve done it by handing out hundreds of millions of doses of the drug which shall not be named. Oh. That doesn’t fit the narrative.

    Yves, please check this story out for yourself and share if you agree with my assessment. It’s the most hopeful I’ve been that there might be a way out of this mess since it started.

    1. Still Above Water

      Also, search for indian bar soumya for a possible legal action against a WHO official for endangering lives. I don’t know anything about the Indian legal system, and can’t ascertain its validity, but it’s certainly eye opening if true.

    2. Basil Pesto

      What are your sources of information that have lead you to that conclusion?

      re: the “Indian Bar Association”s threatened lawsuit from last month. I suggested at the time when the story did the rounds here that it was a publicity stunt and I have no reason to believe that’s still not the case. I wouldn’t be surprised if we never hear about it again.

    3. kareninca

      I, too, thought that India was under control, due to what I’d seen in the mainstream media here in the U.S.. However, when I mentioned that to my husband yesterday, he told me that as of two weeks ago things were still terrible. He talked then with a colleague who has relatives there and she said that people were still dying in terribly high numbers and that it was impossible to get medications and supplies. And she is from a family of doctors.

      I am myself relying on the unnamable paste, and maybe it has helped India. And to the extent that cases have dropped there, it surely isn’t due to vaccination, since the rate is still low. Maybe part of the problem there is the incredibly high obesity rate – if you are Asian you can be metabolically obese at a weight that Westerners would think is normal. Plus loads of diabetes. Plus lots of people living without the most minimal necessities even in ordinary times.

    4. Lambert Strether

      > From what I can tell

      I don’t think we have good data on never-named-drug (NND) in India.

      A quick search indicates that NND is still used in adults (though not recommended for children) as of this June, although not in all states.

      Here is a very good round-up on Southeast Asia (including the current hot spot, Indonesia) from the South China Morning Post.

      Lambert here: I think the ethical policy is blazingly obvious. Since NND causes no harms (please don’t @ me with people taking the animal version*, because (a) the numbers are tiny and (b) the people are desperate) the current messaging violates all common sense and should be, “let her rip.”** (It’s amazing the remdesivir, both ineffective and extremely expensive, isn’t getting the same [makes warding sign] “Avert!” treatment that NND is. Of course, remdesivir doesn’t break anybody’s rice bowl, so maybe it’s not that amazing.)

      NOTE * People hitting themselves in the head with a hammer is bad. The messaging should not be: “Don’t ever use a hammer,” but “Don’t hit yourself in the head with a hammer.”

      NOTE ** I would not say the same for any drug or treatment. But NND has some evidence of success on the scale of national populations (e.g., Mexico), some supportive observational studies and meta-studies, and some support from clinicians. It’s also very cheap. The powers-that-be would like to jam it into the same frame as quack remedies, but it’s not so. It’s insane to deny poor, desperate people “access” to a harmless drug that has a real chance of helping them, all to preserve professional amour propre, the RCT Complex, and Big Pharma’s profits.

      1. Basil Pesto

        Do you have a working link for the SCMP? At the moment it goes back to the Wire article. I’d be interested to read it

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