Links 8/25/2021

Apes say hello and goodbye, just like people do, research shows CNN

Kim Stanley Robinson: a climate plan for a world in flames FT

Dissecting multi-stakeholder forums and how they shape forest governance Forests News

The Future of Wood in Electric Guitars Reverb. From 2020, still germane.


SARS-CoV-2 Infections and Hospitalizations Among Persons Aged ≥16 Years, by Vaccination Status — Los Angeles County, California, May 1–July 25, 2021 Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, CDC. From the Abstract: “During May 1–July 25, 2021, among 43,127 SARS-CoV-2 infections in residents of Los Angeles County, California, 10,895 (25.3%) were in fully vaccinated persons, 1,431 (3.3%) were in partially vaccinated persons, and 30,801 (71.4%) were in unvaccinated persons. On July 25, infection and hospitalization rates among unvaccinated persons were 4.9 and 29.2 times, respectively, those in fully vaccinated persons. In July, when the Delta variant was predominant, cycle threshold values were similar for unvaccinated, partially vaccinated, and vaccinated persons.”

Detection of SARS-CoV-2-Specific IgA in the Human Milk of COVID-19 Vaccinated Lactating Health Care Workers Breastfeeding Medicine. n = 22. From the Abstract: “Human milk produced by mothers with a history of COVID-19 infection contains SARS-CoV-2 IgA and IgG. The purpose of this study is to determine whether SARS-CoV-2-specific immunoglobulins are found in human milk after the COVID-19 vaccination, and to characterize the types of immunoglobulins present…. We found significant secretion of SARS-CoV-2-specific IgA and IgG in human milk and plasma after SARS-CoV-2 vaccination.”

COVID Vaccines Show No Signs of Harming Fertility or Sexual Function Scientific American

* * *

The continuous evolution of SARS-CoV-2 in South Africa: a new lineage with rapid accumulation of mutations of concern and global detection (preprint) medRxiv (GM). From the Discussion: “We have identified a new SARS-CoV-2 variant assigned to the PANGO lineage C.1.2. This variant has been detected throughout the third wave of infections in South Africa from May 2021 onwards and has been detected in seven other countries within Europe, Asia, Africa and Oceania. The identification of novel SARS-CoV-2 variants is commonly associated with new waves of infection. Like several other VOCs, C.1.2 has accumulated a number of substitutions beyond what would be expected from the background SARS-CoV-2 evolutionary rate. This suggests the likelihood that these mutations arose during a period of accelerated evolution in a single individual with prolonged viral infection through virus-host co-evolution.” Like the Kent variant, IIRC.

* * *

County-Level Estimates of Excess Mortality Associated with COVID-19 in the United States (preprint) medRxiv. From the Abstract: ” In the present study, we estimate a generalized linear model of expected mortality in 2020 based on historical trends in deaths by county of residence between 2011 and 2019. We use the results of the model to generate county estimates of excess mortality and excess deaths not assigned to COVID-19 for each county in the US. Overall, we estimate that 437,849 excess deaths occurred in 2020…. Across individual counties, the percentage of excess deaths not assigned to COVID-19 varied substantially, with some counties’ direct COVID-19 tallies capturing only a small fraction of total excess deaths. Our findings suggest that consideration of excess deaths across counties is critical for a full accounting of geographic inequities in mortality during the pandemic.” Scientific American has a summary and this handy chart:

On the negative excess deaths: “Some New England counties actually had negative excess deaths last year—fewer people died than usual—possibly the result of reductions in other causes of death while people stayed at home, the researchers say.” Freedom isn’t free.

Study: Patients, not staff, source of most hospital COVID spread Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy. n = 38. “Viral loads were similar among superspreaders and others in the study. ‘We note that, while prolonged or increased viral shedding would increase the chance of an individual becoming a superspreader, behavioural and environmental factors may also be influential,’ the researchers wrote.” Hmm.

Room-Level Ventilation in Schools and Universities (preprint) chemRxiv. From the Abstract: “For many universities and schools, ventilation data on a room-by-room basis are not available for classrooms and other key spaces. We present an overview of approaches for measuring ventilation along with their advantages and disadvantages. We also present data from recent case studies for a variety of institutions across the United States, with various building ages, types, locations, and climates, highlighting their commonalities and differences, and examples of the use of this data to support decision making.” Given the stately progress of academic budgeting, we would have had to start taking these measurements last year, in order to start work this year. So, a pandemic-ready built environment for universities and schools is at least two years out. But do let’s mandate in-person teaching by the “essential workers” in the academic precariat (which now seemingly includes the tenured, at least the ones that aren’t bringing in the big bucks).

Rural schools shut down to keep COVID-19 from overwhelming their small communities Texas Tribune (Re Silc).


China Economists Say Common Prosperity Won’t Rob Rich Bloomberg. “What are we? Communists?”

China to strengthen financial support for common prosperity China Daily. Commentary:

Private schools distort China’s property market, frustrating Xi’s egalitarian quest FT

Top Beijing official tells Hong Kong young people to embrace work opportunities in mainland China South China Morning Post

China CDC Weekly: The new coronavirus can spread through aerosols in the “handshake building” What China Reads

Kamala Harris’s Asia Trip Can’t Fix Biden’s Troubled Indo-Pacific Strategy Foreign Policy

Harris trip to Vietnam delayed over ‘health incident’ in Hanoi Nikkei Asia. “Health incident” is Blobspeak for mass hysteria the “Havana Syndrome.”


G-7 leaders fail to persuade Biden to delay Afghanistan withdrawal CBS

OnPolitics: Will the war in Afghanistan actually end? USA Today. I’ve always assumed that “Doctor” Biden took personal charge of President Biden’s medications; now would be a good time to have them on her person at all times. Not that I’m foily.

What Future Presidents are Learning from Afghanistan Mischiefs of Faction

How exile changed the Taliban FT

How Will the Taliban Rule? Foreign Affairs

The Taliban have shown themselves to be the most effective political organization in Afghanistan. For two decades, while Afghan politicians have bickered and democracy has faltered, the Taliban’s values, organization, and cohesion have proved enduring. Girded by their notions of unity and Afghan identity, the Taliban surmounted two leadership transitions, the rise of the Islamic State (also known as ISIS), and a 20-year U.S. military presence. They are now in charge and likely to stay in charge for some time.

A very belated dose of realism.


Myanmar soccer goalie receives official refugee status in Japan Kyodo News and Japan refuses to issue visas for military-backed Myanmar diplonmats Japan Times

Around 30 Myanmar Junta Troops Killed in Magwe Ambush The Irrawaddy. Big if true. But a lot of stories like this.

The National Unity Government cannot afford to ignore past injustices if it truly seeks to free Myanmar from military rule Myanmar Now


The Afghanistan crisis has exposed Global Britain’s delusions of grandeur New Statesman (Colonel Smithers).

Schools in England to receive CO2 monitors to improve ventilation Richmond & Twickenham Times. What a concept.

New Cold War

Lessons for Russia From the U.S. Leadership Crisis Carnegie Moscow Center

The Caribbean

Haiti needs help, but ‘not from aid workers who never leave their SUVs’ Guardian

‘I’m sleeping in the streets.’ Life in a Haiti fishing village battered by the earthquake Miami Herald

Venezuela’s Gangs Have Been Turned into Armed Capitalist Enterprises (Part I) Venezuelanalysis. Part II.

Brazil’s new environment minister faces huge Amazon challenge FT

Biden Administration

Supreme Court requires Biden to revive Trump’s ‘remain in Mexico’ immigration policy Reuters

Rahm’s Reward Daily Poster

Our Famously Free Press

CNN’s Pentagon service provider correspondent:

I wish there were something like a weather app, but for propaganda, so I’d know when to take an umbrella to protect myself from the deluge of b***s***. There could be little icons for “Chance of Showers,” and so forth. A 10-day forecast would be especially useful. I could time my media fasting.

I watch the desperate Afghans wade in the sewage as hope fades… and tears fall: Sky News’ STUART RAMSAY, the TV reporter who’s seen the Kabul chaos unfold first hand, pens a vivid and harrowing dispatch Daily Mail (BC).

Lies About Afghanistan Jeet Heer, The Time of Monsters. Heer: “ICYMI: The foreign policy establishment is already re-writing the history of the Afghanistan war.”

Imperial Collapse Watch

Nothing but Pitch Black Darkness Foreign Policy. The entire Bush national security team should be tried in the Hague. But W. gave Michelle candy, so it’s all good. Also too, look forward and not back.

How we paid for the War on Terror Adam Tooze, Chartbook. “Pay for.”

Zeitgeist Watch

Let’s Try to Make Sense of That $600,000 Rock NFT Bloomberg. The Deck: “Could it be that there’s just too much money sloshing around?”

A Famous Honesty Researcher Is Retracting A Study Over Fake Data Buzzfeed

For Cities, Big-Box Stores Are Becoming Even More of a Terrible Deal Institute for Local Self-Reliance (example). And now “fulfillment centers” are pulling the same scams.

Class Warfare

Warrior Met Coal’s strike practices could bring National Labor Relations Board complaint

Amazon Is Beefing Up Its Already Dystopian Worker Surveillance Machine Jacobin

Charlie Watts, Rolling Stones Drummer, Dies at 80 Variety. Tried to find “best Charlie Watts drum solo” on YouTube. Nothing came up. Excellent. What a mensch.

Antidote du jour (via):

Bonus antidote:

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
This entry was posted in Guest Post, Links on by .

About Lambert Strether

Readers, I have had a correspondent characterize my views as realistic cynical. Let me briefly explain them. I believe in universal programs that provide concrete material benefits, especially to the working class. Medicare for All is the prime example, but tuition-free college and a Post Office Bank also fall under this heading. So do a Jobs Guarantee and a Debt Jubilee. Clearly, neither liberal Democrats nor conservative Republicans can deliver on such programs, because the two are different flavors of neoliberalism (“Because markets”). I don’t much care about the “ism” that delivers the benefits, although whichever one does have to put common humanity first, as opposed to markets. Could be a second FDR saving capitalism, democratic socialism leashing and collaring it, or communism razing it. I don’t much care, as long as the benefits are delivered. To me, the key issue — and this is why Medicare for All is always first with me — is the tens of thousands of excess “deaths from despair,” as described by the Case-Deaton study, and other recent studies. That enormous body count makes Medicare for All, at the very least, a moral and strategic imperative. And that level of suffering and organic damage makes the concerns of identity politics — even the worthy fight to help the refugees Bush, Obama, and Clinton’s wars created — bright shiny objects by comparison. Hence my frustration with the news flow — currently in my view the swirling intersection of two, separate Shock Doctrine campaigns, one by the Administration, and the other by out-of-power liberals and their allies in the State and in the press — a news flow that constantly forces me to focus on matters that I regard as of secondary importance to the excess deaths. What kind of political economy is it that halts or even reverses the increases in life expectancy that civilized societies have achieved? I am also very hopeful that the continuing destruction of both party establishments will open the space for voices supporting programs similar to those I have listed; let’s call such voices “the left.” Volatility creates opportunity, especially if the Democrat establishment, which puts markets first and opposes all such programs, isn’t allowed to get back into the saddle. Eyes on the prize! I love the tactical level, and secretly love even the horse race, since I’ve been blogging about it daily for fourteen years, but everything I write has this perspective at the back of it.


  1. Howard Beale IV

    Re: Big-box stores – When my dishwasher caused me nothing but grief and I decided to replace it, I went to a state-based appliance chain, and they had stock, whereas all the big-box stores (Best Buy, Home Depot, Lowes) were quoting lead times of two months or more. I tried a local mom-and-pop appliance store, but when I had their service tech come out to look at my old dishwasher, they came back and states that ‘parts were missing’ without even bothering to pull the unit out; nor did they tell me what parts were exactly missing, and since they don’t hold inventory, I’d be facing the same delivery delay as the big-box stores would have.

    1. PlutoniumKun

      Greg Palasts book The Best Democracy Money can Buy has a great account of how his local town was taken over by a big box retailer, with the active support of local Republican small businessmen who saw opposing strict zoning regulations as more important than keeping out Walmart. They then seemed genuinely baffled when their businesses failed due to competition from the big box retailer.

  2. Ian Perkins

    Harris trip to Vietnam delayed over ‘health incident’ in Hanoi

    I don’t know if NC has mentioned this before, but a group of engineers reckoned ‘Havana Syndrome’ could be due to something called ‘intermodulation distortion’. Basically, and as far as I understand it, ultrasound devices can produce the effects seen in screen shots of
    the acoustic spectral plots recorded in Havana – and ultrasound devices are becoming more common, perhaps especially around spooks, embassies and diplomats.

    Perhaps those with expertise in these matters would care to comment? (more technical)

    1. Milton

      Some 200 U.S. officials and kin, including CIA officers, have been sickened by “Havana syndrome,” CIA Director William Burns has said. A U.S. National Academy of Sciences panel in December found that a plausible theory is that “directed energy” beams caused the syndrome, he said.

      The CIA sees a “very strong possibility” that the syndrome is intentionally caused, and that Russia could be responsible, but is withholding definitive conclusions pending further investigation. Moscow denies involvement.

      So those wacky people I encountered in my youth, who would spew what I thought was nonsense about CIA or communists infiltrating their minds through fillings, were really quite sane all along?
      Are the elite class even reading what is even being put forth in their “trusted news source” publications anymore? Jeeze!

        1. JohnA

          Actually, the mythical Soviet/Russian subs were able to persuade the Swedish parliament to increase the defence budget every time! Caching

      1. Mikel

        Havan Syndrome is real.
        It’s a sickness induced in some by consistent exposure to anything that challenges long held ideologies.

          1. Wukchumni

            Our 7-11 found that the homeless preferred impromptu outdoor parking lot Bach concerts and had to switch to Wagner, eventually settling on Debbie Boone’s ‘You Light Up My Life’ on repeat, when they finally Götterdämmerung around to it.

      2. drumlin woodchuckles

        Maybe the nonsense-spewers of your youth were whacky. Maybe the technology has caught up to the visions of the wacky and even surpassed those visions.

        Either this syndrome exists or it doesn’t. If it exists, it either has a cause or it doesn’t. If it is caused by some kind of directed energy or overlapped energy fields, anyone can invent and deploy such fields. So left-wing people can laugh about it now, when various “adversaries” of America are accused of using the energy delivery devices ( if such exist). But the same left-wing people won’t be laughing anymore if the DC FedRegime or state-govs or local police departments decide to start marinating protesters and demonstrators in the same kind of energy rays or fields.

    2. Grumpy Engineer

      @Ian Perkins: Regarding ‘Havana Syndrome’, what I want to know is this: Has anybody bothered to instrument embassies for the stuff?

      Ultrasound and microwaves that are powerful enough to cause physical injury are easy to detect with appropriate instrumentation. Like ultrasonic microphones and/or microwave antennas connected to spectrum analyzers. And this type of instrumentation already exists. There are dozens of companies that manufacture it, and a great many more have expertise in setting it up and using it. No new technology needs to be invented here. Existing technology simply needs to be deployed.

      The amount of speculation regarding ‘Havana Syndrome’ has been astonishing. But as best I can tell, nobody has taken measurements. I find the helplessness of our government here more than a little disturbing.

      1. Ian Perkins

        I don’t know, and I somehow doubt it. Even if they did sweep their embassy for ultrasound sources and found a likely culprit, they might well have hushed it up in the hope of worsening US-Cuba relations.

        But that paper did look very convincing to me. They not only had theoretical reasons for suspecting this ‘intermodulation distortion’, but they recreated what they saw in the spectral plots with very simple stuff, not at all contrived in this age of sensors and transmitters galore. Then again, much of it went over my head …

        1. Grumpy Engineer

          The paper isn’t proof of an actual attack. They’re merely postulating about one possible mechanism of attack that would explain the symptoms seen. I agree that the scenario they paint is plausible (up to and including non-linearities causing sub-harmonic “leakage” into the audible frequency domain), but 155+ dB? Holy crap. That’s LOUD. Loud enough to break glass and cause objects to “walk” off the table.

          At these power levels, nobody could plant a battery-powered ultrasonic device inside the embassy and expect to cause harm. It would have to be done from outside with high-powered amplifiers, speakers, and a parabolic dish to aim the sound waves.

          1. Ian Perkins

            I’m not sure where that 155dB’s from exactly, but:
            Two inaudible ultrasonic signals mixing in a nonlinear medium could easily lead to an audible intermodulation distortion product. Although little is known about how audible sound waves can cause neurological damage rather than merely be correlated with neurological damage, the safety community has studied how certain audible sounds can cause pain and hearing damage. Thus, ultrasonic intermodulation distortion could produce harmful, audible byproducts. The safety warnings on audible frequencies and intensities would apply to these byproducts. While our experiments do not eliminate the possibility of malicious intent to harm diplomats, our experiments do show that whoever caused the sensations may have had no intent for harm. The emitter source remains an open question, but could range from covert ultrasonic exfiltration of modulated data to ultrasonic jammers of eavesdropping devices or perhaps just ultrasonic pest repellents. (page 27)

            1. drumlin woodchuckles

              Anything that could harm a diplomat today could be used to harm a protester tomorrow. I would suggest thinking about this in a non-derisory way.

          2. lordkoos

            155+ decibels would not be registered by your ears if the frequencies were above the threshold of human hearing? It might well be disturbing in other ways to the nervous system but I don’t think it would be perceived as “loud”.

            1. Ian Perkins

              Did the 155dB come from here? “At what level of intensity could IMD products cause harm to humans? We know of no nontrivial lower bounds. … While there are anecdotes and folklore for harm from airborne ultrasound, we have found no primary sources that confirm this aside from stories about extremely intense sounds above 155 dB.” (page 26) If so (and that’s the only “155” in the paper), that doesn’t seem to be saying either the IMD or the ultrasound was 155dB.

              1. Grumpy Engineer

                From your original link: “The Canadian government, meanwhile, has ruled that humans can be directly harmed by airborne ultrasound at sound pressures of 155 decibels or higher—which is louder than a jet taking off at 25 meters.

                If the Canadian government is correct, ultrasound has to be at least this loud to cause physical injury. I would presume that any deliberate ultrasonic acoustic attack would involve sound power levels even higher.

                1. Ian Perkins

                  But the whole point of the article and paper was that it may not have been a deliberate attack (the ultrasound sources might have all been US sources!), and it may not have been ultrasound causing symptoms.
                  Thus, ultrasonic intermodulation distortion could produce harmful, audible byproducts.

                  While our experiments do not eliminate the possibility of malicious intent to harm diplomats, our experiments do show that whoever caused the sensations may have had no intent for harm. (p27)

      2. Darthbobber

        Hmm… Indeed, countermeasures against known surveillance uses of microwave and ultrasound technologies have been known and implemented for a long time. And I’d be very surprised if our embassies were not fully equipped in that regard.

        I suppose one can’t entirely discount them being deployed against people driving or walking outside, but the failure of any of our 200,000+ intelligence specialists or their web of contractors to come up with a source for any incident leads me to have my doubts.

        One thing I wouldn’t entirely reject as a cause: Some subset of the population have reactions falling within this range of symptoms to one or more components of now commonly used technology (phones, wifi, Bluetooth, etc etc). In often unpredictable ways

        We have a wireless security system in our house which causes no problems in passive mode (where windows and doors just chime when opened or closed), but if actually ARMED it will infallibly cause my wife visual migraine, dizziness, mild nausea, and sometimes splitting headaches.

        Many years back, when brain damage issues involving cell phones were widely talked about, my wife thought physically having her phone up to her head produced disturbing heat and discomfort. One time I came up and put my arm around her with my hand on her shoulder while she was talking and her body actually felt like it was vibrating with that thrum you get when touching an air conditioner, convection oven or other device that has a grounding or other problem. Then we did some experimentation to find out under what conditions this happened and how to prevent it.

        I’ve since run into several other people who have reactions outside the norm to one variant or another of currently omnipresent technology. And I imagine that our embassies and military are presently even more chock-full of various wireless tech than your run of the mill establishment.

        1. Ian Perkins

          As i understand the article and paper (which is poorly!), “countermeasures against known surveillance uses of microwave and ultrasound technologies” could well be responsible, by interacting with some other ultrasound source.

          1. Darthbobber

            I wouldn’t doubt 5hat, either. One thing most of the barrage of waves of all kinds we increasingly move through every day is that possible effects on living beings haven’t been studied as rigorously as one might like.

      3. Jeotsu

        I find it curious that nobody is asking what gear is in the US embassies that is harming their own staff? Is this RF or acoustic leakage from some NSA/CIA/TLA gear installed within?

        I think back to the stories from the 40’s and 50’s of military guards at remote secret bases finding the magic ‘warm spots’ to stand when on guard duty, not knowing they were in side-lobes of microwave radars being tested in those locked, top-secret buildings.

        1. Ian Perkins

          The paper doesn’t point the finger at any specific equipment the US might have had in the embassy, but it does say, “The emitter source remains an open question, but could [be] ultrasonic jammers of eavesdropping devices or perhaps just ultrasonic pest repellents.” (p27)

    3. hunkerdown

      That doesn’t seem inconsistent with a commodity (therefore highly cost-reduced) ultrasonic rodent repeller device whose power supply components are ageing, or which are deliberately designed to extract the third harmonic of the line frequency to more effectively vex rodents. The question is, why are diplomats suddenly hearing rodent repeller devices? What is their true nature?

    4. Louis Fyne

      first search result, allegedly up to 20% of the population suffers from hypochondria.

      Russian or Chinese or Dr Evil-style directed energy weapons or hypochondria?

      I go for hypochondria first. Especially as 50 years of foreign policy shows everyone employed by State, Defense, the intelligence services need their head examined

    5. The Rev Kev

      Probably this is a form of mass hysteria by this professional class but it could be worse this, much worse. And by that I mean what would have happened if this had taken the form of mass dancing like the dancing plague of 1518? Can you imagine what it would be like visiting the US Embassy in Hanoi if this was happening? The Embassy’s Marine Guard outside would be seen doing the Lindy-hop and the diplomatic staff inside would be doing a great Samba. Meanwhile, the CIA spook detachment downstairs would be preforming an acceptable form of Hip-hop while upstairs the political officers would be doing a fair Riverdance. Meanwhile the Ambassador would be doing a tap dance session-

      Just remember that the list of mass hysteria cases is a very long one-

    6. Tertium Squid

      I wonder if many of our embassies have been using technology to disrupt wireless listening devices and they cause unintended effects.

      1. Ian Perkins

        The impression I got from the article and paper was that the most likely cause was unintended interactions of technology there for other purposes.

        1. Ian Perkins

          That is, the most likely cause of the recorded spectral plots. I expect The Rev Kev’s onto something with the hysteria angle, with staff deciding their hangovers and wotnot were all due to the evil commies’ evil weapons, perhaps being egged on to do so.

    7. Soredemos

      I’m amazed this stupid propaganda story keeps getting trotted out. There is no mystery about ‘Havana syndrome’. We already know the answer: it’s coming from cicadas and/or crickets. This has been known for years:

      I’ve never even understood what the supposed logic would be for this conspiracy theory.

      “Mmmm, da Natasha. As part of our ill-defined but assuredly evil plan, ve vill make the staff of minor US embassies vaguely queasy.”

      We’ve seen a lot of really freaking stupid propaganda pushes in the last few years (“what if Russia turns off your heat in the winter?!”), but this one is one of the singularly dumbest.

    8. JeffC

      As a signal-processing researcher who has taught basic IMD ideas and published on not-so basic ones, let me offer a +1 to the U of Michigan team who looked at the Havana-syndrome business. It’s a very reasonable take on the whole matter.

    1. Ian Perkins

      I heard Charlie Watts was a great drummer for providing just what was needed and no more, which might partly explain Lambert’s disappointment when searching for “best Charlie Watts drum solo” on YouTube.
      That said, the drumming on Sympathy for the Devil and Honky Tonk Women is great!

      1. ChiGal

        He wasn’t disappointed, it was confirmation that Charlie Watts practiced what he preached: the drummer not as prima donna but integral part of the fabric woven together by the group.

        1. Ian Perkins

          Definitely not a prima donna, I agree, but I heard that when Mick Jagger stumbled into his hotel room slurring, “Where’s my drummer?” Charlie replied, “I’m not your drummer; you’re my singer,” and punched him in the face.

          1. jonboinAR

            I read the story somewhere else last night. Keith’s take (if this is really it) is quite colorful. Keith and Mick went out, Keith loaning Mick the jacket he’d gotten married in. When they returned, “pissed”, Mick, against Keith’s advice, Keith assures us, called Charlie’s room demanding to speak to “my drummer.” A few minutes later, a knock on the door. Charlie strode in. Keith said he was dressed to the nines in a Savile Row suit, clean shaven, smelling of expensive cologne. He dragged the “pissed” Mick up by the lapels of Keith’s jacket and hit him with a right hook. Mick staggered back and was about to tumble out the window into the Amsterdam Canal. Keith grabbed Mick by the same lapels and dragged him back into the room. “Why’d you do that”?, Charlie demanded.
            “Hey, that was my jacket”, answered Keith.
            Nobody calls Charlie Watts “my drummer”, NOBODY!

        2. Soredemos

          I’m not sure if it’s considered bad form to shill for another band in the context of mourning a recently departed musician, but the idea of no player being the focus and instead everyone working together in service to the sound as a whole lives on in abundance with Band-Maid. They’re a perfect example of the whole being greater than the sum of its parts, even though at least 3/5 of the group are legit geniuses, in particular the drummer and bassist.

          I could pick pretty much pick any of their songs, but this blues heavy one seems appropriate to link vis-a-vis the Rolling Stones:

        1. R

          Heart of Devon. It being a small world, Charlie Watts lived quietly, when not on tour, in the manor house of our darkest Devon village. His wife breeds Arabians and swears like a trooper if you meet her driving in the single track lanes. They are well liked in the village and turn out for the new village hall, the flower show etc. RIP Charlie.

          As random further evidence of it being an interconnected world, despite the rural fastness of the place, the house was formerly the seat of the Furse family, who, after a thousand years of unexceptional gentry living, blossomed and died as artists and bohemians in the 20thC. Ralph Furse dated Margot Fonteyn and she was regularly picked up by our neighbour from the railway station. Another Furse married Rex Whistler, the engraver, and a third Furse married Elizabeth Furse, who is in some way related to Anthony Haden-Guest, the British columnist in New York, who as a result went to the private primary school in the other half of our house with my mother in the 1940’s.

          The last Furse standing is Jill Furse. My mother was my father’s second wife but his son by his first wife was friends at art school with Jill Furse and so bizarrely had lived in the village and sketched it.

          Let’s hope the next occupants live up to the recent ones.

      2. Hank Linderman

        A big key to his drumming was resting (not playing) the hi hat on the backbeat (beats 2 and 4 in a measure of 4/4). This is not what other rock drummers do; the hi hat usually plays a pattern of 1/8th notes – 1 and 2 and 3 and 4 and – quite relentlessly. Charlie’s approach ended up changing the pulse of the groove – and 1 and (rest) and 3 and (rest) – once you notice this it is something you will always hear.

        So, listen to the snare without the hat on the backbeat, look at the videos to see his right hand pause on 2 and 4, and marvel…


        1. jonboinAR

          Speaking of 8th notes and rock, going down a rabbit hole, since you seem to know whereof you speak, do you or anyone know the truth of this: The Ramones are credited by at least some of starting punk rock. I’ve heard it a couple of ways. One is that they didn’t really know how to play rock when they started and were so, maybe inadvertently creative. They began a style where the drummer and the guitarist pound out 8th notes together. I guess the drummer’s on the snare and hi-hat, while the guitarist maybe hits a chord? Anyway, that makes sense to me that that could give punk its relentless bam bam bam rhythm. Then, they went and toured England. In England at the time there was a ferment of young musicians and bands, partly at least, coming from the urban slummy areas. They hadn’t developed a particular sound yet. Supposedly they glommed onto this crazy, energetic band from New York. “Yeah, right!” Supposedly, at one point, the Ramones are sitting in a bar or pub with some other musicians. The other guys say, “Yeah, we’ve been practicing, but we’re just not good enough to play live.” One of the Ramones pipes up, “Hey, you have to come listen to us. We suck. We can’t play. You just have to get out there and do it!” The guys he was advising to “Just do it”? The Clash. Where do I get this stuff from? The Internet, of course!

          1. Ian Perkins

            You might like the documentary End of the Century: The Story of the Ramones. (I didn’t; it’s 95% band members talking about themselves and each other.) As I recall, when one of the Ramones said they couldn’t play, Johnny Rotten replied, “You should hear us. We’re f’ing awful.”

        2. lordkoos

          For the record, Charlie Watts’ technique of avoiding the backbeat on the hi-hat so that the snare alone would play it, was adopted by Charlie but actually originated with the drummer for The Band, Levon Helm.

          1. Dr. John Carpenter

            That particular little trick predates both Watts and Helm. Listen closely to very early rock and roll or r&b records. The Chess records the early Stones tried to emulate are full of that kind of playing. Leaving the high hat off the 2 and 4 helps keep the shuffle feel going. Rock guys stopped doing it as they stopped coming from a jazz, blues or gospel background and the eighth notes lost their swing and flattened out.

            1. lordkoos

              True but the Chess guys weren’t playing rock, they were playing swing & shuffles, as you say. Levon was the first person to play that way on a rock beat as far as I know.

    2. dougie

      Thank You!! I just spent 30 minutes going down the rabbit hole, and forwarded link to dozens of my fellow music geeks. I was even able to engage She Who Must Be Obeyed for a few minutes, and she is is mostly into Broadway show tunes.

    3. Randy G

      Was Charlie Watts the oldest living rock-n-roll drummer at the time of his death? Something akin to the coelacanth?

      (Asking for The Who)

  3. The Rev Kev

    “G-7 leaders fail to persuade Biden to delay Afghanistan withdrawal”

    Those G-7 leaders are talking to the wrong leader and they know it. They should be asking the government of Afghanistan since it is, well, their country. Everybody wants to pretend that Biden is in charge of Kabul but we all know that it is actually the Taliban. If you do not recognize that, then you are not a realist. I am constantly amazed at the number of people coming forward and saying that we should go back into Afghanistan with a new Coalition, seize Bagram air base and lay down the law on the Taliban. And not just hard-core Republicans & military has-beens but supposedly independent thinkers as well. Even that James Howard Kunstler was saying that US power should be used to establish an escape corridor with the implication that the Taliban could not resist US power in doing so. To people like that I can only repeat Private Hudson’s observation from the film ‘Aliens’- (5 secs)

    1. ChrisFromGeorgia

      Don’t fret, it is just the neo-cons going through the five stages of grief.

      They’ve arrived at bargaining, so depression comes next.

      1. hunkerdown

        Good one, had me going for a second. Kübler-Ross intended that her five stages should not be treated as a prescriptive linear teleology. We are going to see all kinds of cope out of the “property = democracy” community.

    2. jsn

      Why is it (rhetorical question) that Biden isn’t stripping rank from all the incompetent generals under who’s commands this entirely predictable and predicted mess has unfolded?

      The press would go psychotic about a coup if the elected President started humiliating all the failed generals.

      Profitable failure is it’s own reward and “Capitalist to the Core” Joe Biden won’t stand in the way of market incentives.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        Biden is lazy and was unfit for the job. A smart man would have gone in with a plan and vision for Afghanistan. The reported story is Biden asked for options and alternatives to withdrawal after being inaugurated. He should already know. Changes of plan are one thing, but Biden was reacting to the situation on the ground which was undeniable before he became President.

        There are still 400 flag officers. A guy running for President as front runner should have are team ready to go for the moment, and Biden really doesn’t. Trump’s negotiated date might have been tight, but between the unfriendly transition, they should have been ready for the inauguration.

        1. jsn

          My view? An elected president hasn’t controlled us foreign policy and particularly the CIA & Pentagon since Eisenhower, who just barely managed it, as he pointed out at the time in his MIC speech.

        2. Darthbobber

          Biden’s plan and vision for Afghanistan was the same as mine-or Trump’s. Pull the ripcord.

          The failures, if that’s what they were, whether of intelligence or logistics, fall clearly within the core competence of any military worth it’s salt.

          If he made a mistake, it was in going for the extension of the agreed deadline from May to the end of August. Though I suspect that extension was itself the result of a fait accompli by the brass hats who had stonewalled and slow-walked the Trump withdrawal. From early 2020 they had had ample time to implement that in an orderly fashion and be out in May of 21 had they chosen to do so.

          I suspect the original deadline suited the convenience of both the Taliban and our political authorities. Due to a combination of weather and a lot of the Cannon fodder being otherwise engaged October to April, the fighting season always kicks off sometime in April and comes to a halt in October. Offensives by anybody don’t happen in the off season.

          The May schedule would have given the Americans their “decent interval” between their departure and the Taliban victory, and the Taliban had no problem with that. They obviously would have a problem with postponing their planned operation until the end of August to let us dither, because that would squander most of the fighting season, leaving key objectives to be deferred until spring 2022.

          1. lyman alpha blob

            There was a segment on Breaking Points the other day where Krystal mentioned that one of Trump’s military brass (maybe Joint Chief chair) recently said they had no intention of leaving in May. What was unclear in the clip was whether Trump was aware of that or not. Since the military had defied him previously, my guess is Trump was not aware.

        3. Procopius

          Given the consensus that a regular army needs ten soldiers for every guerrilla, I don’t think the current All-Volunteer Army is large enough to successfully occupy Afghanistan. Are you planning to make Afghanistan the 51st state, instead of Puerto Rico? Otherwise, what is your goal? What is your intended end state? How will you know whether you have succeeded? These are questions that have to be answered before you initiate hostilities. We lost because we tolerated and supported corruption on an unprecedented scale. Was it the only way we could get the Northern Alliance to cooperate with us? We should learn a lesson from that, but I’m sure we will not.

          1. Ian Perkins

            The Northern Alliance were well known for being up to their necks in the opium trade back in 2001 – the UN said so, among others. I even heard an NA politician admit it on BBC Hardtalk, though naturally he was an exception.

          2. The Rev Kev

            To occupy a country successfully, the common ratio is about one soldier for every fifty people – and that is without a guerrilla campaign. As Afghanistan has about 38 million people, that means that the occupation army should have been about 760,000 soldiers strong. At the war’s peak, the U.S. and NATO military numbers surpassed 150,000 but that was about it-


    3. dftbs

      None of these guys and gals ever looked at a map, the US Navy can’t Freedom of Navigation its way into Afghanistan. They are operating under the assumption that Pakistan, cause let’s face it Iran wont, will allow us to use their airspace to launch an invasion.

      The difference from 2001 to 2021, is that Pakistan isn’t afraid of us anymore; and our behavior has clarified that their national interest is better served by our withdrawal. Not only do they have stand-off military capabilities which would prevent us from going in guns ablaze, but they have broad diplomatic support for keeping us at bay.

      The latter is the most important and most under reported dynamic of our defeat. The regional Central Asian powers, Pakistan, Iran, China and Russia, are consummating their security Entente by enforcing their mutual agreement with the Taliban for the US’ withdrawal. Unfortunately for the proponents of US power, life isn’t a Tom Clancy book.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        There is also no local support for fighting this iteration of the Taliban. I mean I hear these crazy numbers of collaborators we need to get out, but how can this same group not be players in a negotiated settlement? Even the pictures at the airport show a lot of men of fighting age. Fighting for routes into Pakistan and other countries and squeezing the Taliban would work if it was the same Taliban. Karzai flipped at some level.

        This tells me the current Taliban has a real hold on local power structures and isn’t seen the same way as 20 years ago.

        1. dftbs

          Yes, there is a certain disingenuousness when the media posit the Taliban and the Afghan people as wholly different entities. Headlines like “Kabul falls to the Taliban,” or “Afghan’s flee Taliban,” are structured to make you think of them as a group foreign to Afghanistan, as opposed to being broadly representative of Afghanistan and its people (whether we like it or not).

      2. JTMcPhee

        What route did the drone that dropped a Hellfire or GBU on the ISPK mastermind yesterday (PAYBACK! YAY U S A!) take? “All the world airspace and seas and skies belong US”?

  4. zagonostra

    >Amazon Is Beefing Up Its Already Dystopian Worker Surveillance Machine – Jacobin

    The surveillance technology comes from Netradyne, a California-based company that uses cameras to analyze driver activity…Drivers’ concerns about the technology are multiple…“My direct supervisor mentioned that ‘a bunch of people’ said they were going to quit when the cameras were installed,” says one delivery driver

    Apparently Jacobin is concerned about “surveillance technology” but seems to be just fine with biological technology and even suggest that the U.S. should be more like New Zealand, where recently a single case of CV was justification for a complete lockdown.

    I went over to their site to read the the article in todays links and thought I’d have a look at where they stood on mandatory vaccines. Did they mention that Paris this past weekend had their 6th weekend of protest with many tens of thousands protesting in the streets? Were they concerned about the FDA rushing the approval process of Pfizer vaccine? Did they make the case for the potential dangers to civil liberties?

    No, rather they itemize a list of justifications for why the mandates are ok and that “however you might feel about the idea of vaccine mandates, they’re not some scary, new creation of our quasi-authoritarian age.”

    This article might have been linked in NC, but I don’t recall seeing. Here is there concluding paragraph:

    In an ideal world, we would never have to turn to mandating vaccines. But given the continuing and horrifying scale of the pandemic’s threat to life, its dangers to children who won’t be vaccinated for some time, the ongoing economic disruption the virus’ spread among the unvaccinated will cause, and the fact that US society has already decided it’s willing to make a (far worse and more dangerous) trade-off of privacy for security, New York–style vaccine mandates are an appropriate and measured response. They should be understood as a unique exception — but we’re living through exceptional times.

    1. Carolinian

      The libertarians like to say that “war is the health of the state” thereby bashing both war and the state as well. But they have a point. In highly unequal societies fear is a way of controlling a dissatisfied population and protecting a static and entrenched ruling class.

      So is “pandemic” now going to be the health of the state? You have to suspect that many of the uppers see the crisis as an opportunity and bending the populace to their will as an assertion of power. This might sound paranoid except that the vaccines are not proving to be the promised solution after all.

      Bottom line: as world governments become increasingly authoritarian we’re likely to find out just how healthy those states really are.

      1. Darthbobber

        That phrase was coined by Randolph Bourne, not precisely a libertarian by contempory usage. He died in the post Great War influenza pandemic.

        The collection of his essays grouped under the title “War and the Intellectuals” remains worth reading.

      2. cnchal

        The vaccines have morphed into a curse instead of the promised solution.

        The people vaccinated many months ago are no longer vaccinated but think they are, and behave accordingly. To remain vaccinated, here comes shot three, four and moar and the confusion intensifies. How soon before a deplorable is someone that refuses to continue the vaccine game?

        Still Flying = Total Fail

    2. Sawdust

      I’ve long suspected what actually brings us to totalitarianism is our willingness to accept anything justified in terms of safety or efficiency. Yes, there have to be regulations for those things, but the ratchet only seems to turn one way.

    3. jr

      I tried to share with some PMC friends why the mandates are a bad idea. My list of objections included:

      1. Reams of evidence that the vax’d shed viruses when sick, making gathering in restaurants etc. unsafe in any event.

      2. People have reasons for not wanted to get vaccinated. I mentioned my white blood cell count dropping after my 2nd Pfizer, the reproductive issues, the total lack of any reason to trust the pharma companies’ data, ditto the authorities, etc. etc.

      3. Mandates will lead to conflicts, mostly for staff and workers who are left to enforce the chaotic mess this has become, as well as deepen rifts in society.

      I don’t get far. They do that thing where intelligent people consider your points then immediately snap back to what they believe as if nothing was said, as if nothing has changed. Which is why I hang out here all the time.

      I think a lot of people just can’t deal with the cognitive dissonance of having a “solution” that doesn’t seem to be solving the problem. At least here in “Can Do!” America where nothing actually gets done but everyone pretends it does. Also, it’s always nice to add a new scourge to one’s arsenal with which to rhetorically flog the “deplorables”.

      But this catastrophe was baked into our society, failures of governance and education and economics decades in the making. Like Afghanistan, most people just ignored it or were taught to ignore it. COVID lit a match but the dumpster of garbage preceded it. Almost everything we are “doing” is actually trying to claw back lost ground, in a sense.

      That map that was posted here a year back or so, that depicted the rising temperatures in the South West spreading like a fire across the continent, keeps coming back to me. It’s a time of signs and portents; the peaks and troughs of the “sine wave” of experiential reality are higher and deeper. Numbers are bigger, images more extreme, voices louder and wilder.

    4. Mason

      Of course Jacobin pushes this sadly. Granted I haven’t read as much Jacobin as I used to.

      Too much centralization.

    5. tennesseewaltzer

      A few quotes of note in these strange times.
      Shakespeare wrote of Iago: “A man can smile and smile and be a villain.”
      Helen Keller wrote: “Security is mostly a superstition. It does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than outright exposure. Life is either a daring adventure, or nothing.”

    6. Larry Y

      Because there is a “society” and public health is valid consideration? Like collapse of the hospital system?

      However, we have no long term data on these vaccines, and since it’s not a sterilizing vaccine, and effectiveness fades due to time and variants, etc. – I think we can have a legitimate debate around vaccine mandates. To me, it’s mindbogglingly depraved that there’s so much controversy over measures such as better masking, ventilation, and just general measures against mass spreading events.

      As for shutdowns/lockdowns – does commerce trumps all other considerations? Or just ideological refusal to consider supporting and paying people to quarantine and/or to stay home, and supporting business so that they’re ready to go once the public health emergency is over (as opposed to shutting down)?

      The shutdowns in NZ, Taiwan, etc. are much less authoritarian then the Cold War or the War on Terror – much of the right wing is hypocritical if it were communists or muslims or restless natives. Taiwan was under martial law until 1987, and now has official memorials and remembrances of the 228 incident, and isn’t afraid of having fist fights in the legislature.

      1. Larry y

        Also, I see vaccine mandates being pushed hard because it’s perceived by the PMCs as a magic bullet. Too much wishful thinking and “noble lies”.

      2. GM

        As for shutdowns/lockdowns – does commerce trumps all other considerations? Or just ideological refusal to consider supporting and paying people to quarantine and/or to stay home, and supporting business so that they’re ready to go once the public health emergency is over (as opposed to shutting down)?

        It’s both, but the latter is the real problem.

        Paying people to not work and cancelling debts threatens the very foundations of the system that enriches the few at the expense of the many. So it cannot be allowed, ever, even as a temporary measure. The precedent is too dangerous.

        So endemic COVID and millions dead it is instead.

        The US death toll will in all likelihood exceed 1M under Biden, by some time next year, and in total many more people will die under him than under Trump. It will be curious to see how that milestone will be commemorated…

      3. Ian Perkins

        much of the right wing is hypocritical

        I think when health workers were returning to the US from dealing with an Ebola outbreak in Africa, it was Republicans who were loudest in demanding stringent quarantine and isolation regardless of tests or symptoms.

    7. Kouros

      I say let’s put the cameras on workers, but also let’s put the cameras and microphones on management and politicians as well. I think that should be only fair…

  5. timbers

    For Cities, Big-Box Stores Are Becoming Even More of a Terrible Deal Institute for Local Self-Reliance (example). And now “fulfillment centers” are pulling the same scams.

    My father was an attorney in a small town in Minnesota. He bought a few downtown buildings and was an enthusiastic supporter of Downtown promotion and revival (not that revival was an issue at that point in time). I worked thru high school at a downtown Greek restaurant with a menu as long as the Bible and that make their own candies, very popular, and all the downtown business owners – jewelry stores, tailors, men’s clothing, dinnerware, gift and clothing shops of all kinds…and a few chain stores like Woolworths – everything and anything you can think of – and staff would go to lunch and dinner while working. I absorbed the local talk as they ate.

    When the town got it’s first Shopping Mall with some type of support from the City – situated on the edge of town – the local downtown talk was thick with resentment that city money was being used to undermine and compete their businesses. And my father’s downtown assets took a considerable hit I would imagine but those things weren’t talked about at home in front of us kids.

    1. 430MLK

      I wonder if the mall tax breaks that you reference were Industrial Revenue Bonds? IRBs were/are city or state-issued bonds that are tax-exempt at the federal level (good for purchasers) and which require the recipient to deed over to the city/state their property (a workaround to be eligible for the tax exempt bonds) for the life of the bond….which then exempts them from paying local/state taxes.

      I did some limited research into them. (Lexington just issued its first one, $30 million for a boutique hotel, in about 25 years.) I think they started as New Deal-era federal mechanisms to help industrialize the south. Since they are issued locally but backstopped w/ federal tax abatements, state leaders throughout the U.S. loved them for greenfield development, and used them the nation over for mall-building. (Lexington’s last IRB that I’ve seen was for a 1990s era upscale mall development across from an already-established mall.)

      IRBs seemed to morph into TIFs as a preferred infill mechanism for today’s malls (hotels, parking decks, convo centers). Depending on the specific state’s policy, TIFs (Tax Increment Financing) absolve developers from most state and local taxes.

      If anyone knows anything about IRBs, I’d love to hear what you know! They seem to be coming back into fashion in my neck of the woods.

    2. ex-PFC Chuck

      Timbers, your home town sounds a lot like mine. Were there five lakes within or on the city limits?

  6. russell1200

    Even with some Covid deaths, you would expect to see some counties go negative in a year-over-year. Normally you would expect the negatives to roughly equal the positives if the only difference is noise. You would expect that the smaller counties would have the greatest potential to swing positive or negative.

    So what there chart is showing is how broadly Covid effected the U.S. geographically. I am not sure I would find it meaningful that low population counties (aka rural in the middle of nowhere) where the ones in the negative unless they also trended to NOT be in the positive. In other words they skewed negative.

    1. Wukchumni

      Was on a backpack trip with a Mexican-American friend from LA and in his family in SoCal and down under in Mexico, there were 14 cases of Covid and 3 deaths.

      I’m in the habit of asking family & friends how Covid has effected them, and he’s such an outlier, so as to be almost thrown out of my little study as its so radical compared to the other 50 or so people i’ve inquired.

      To give you an idea of how it varies in rural areas, the last report of people testing positive was 52 out of a population of a little over 2,000 and some wags here call our burb ‘Caucasian Island’ as haoles are about 90% of the population here, whereas the next town over is Woodlake with a population of around 8,000 and 86% Hispanic had 791 testing positive, 4x as many as us on a population basis.

      1. John Beech

        In our middle class family, two COVID19 deaths. Donna in August of last year (she was a covidiot of the first water, one who took medical advice from the political class). Sad but true. Then another 1st cousin, Cathy, in February of this year. So make of it what you will for your stats.

        Meanwhile, in my opinion, those who yammer about it being no worse than the flu are simply ignorant of the facts. Often willfully so, which means they’re actually stupid. Darwin award material, in my further opinion.

        Us? Me, wife, daughter, grandsons? Vaccinated (except the 5 and 8 year olds). And we mask up (double mask, actually). We use an N95 with the elastics ear loops removed, plus a black cloth mask (cotton t-shirt type material). It’s the latter, which actually holds the N95 securely to our faces (using nice and soft cloth ear loops). Trust me, this is a waaaaay more comfortable approach.

        Restaurants? Forget about it. Groceries? Walmart has a great car-side service. Use their app for the list, text it to them and they’ll tell you when to pick up (a one hour window, actually). Arrive, text the spot # you’re in and within a few minutes they wheel it out and load. No human contact. Switched us from using Publix, who now offer similar but Wallyworld is more convenient.

        And when we must be near other people, especially doctor’s appointments, we hork our nasal cavities upon our return with betadine and saline water solution. This ain’t over so take care.

        1. jr

          JB, I found that the 95 under a cloth mask deformed the contours of the 95 a bit, I use a surgie underneath but a cloth might work too. YMMV.

  7. The Rev Kev

    The propaganda of it all. It’s no surprise our state run media is pushing it all with zero hesitation.’

    Caitlin Johnstone did a post on this which is like reading about an exploitative kiddie war pron. Lots of tiny kids there but a question – where are their parents? What happened to them? I have been reading about people raging about human rights and women’s rights under the new Taliban but I do not think that they are thinking this all the way through. Suppose, just suppose, that the Taliban sets up an impartial commission to investigate the war crimes of the Coalition forces over the past twenty years. We would be hearing direct testimony of villagers on what they experienced under the occupation. Do we want to hear it? The Taliban may even eventually go for a truth & reconciliation commission like they did in South Africa. Sure the Taliban have their own crimes to account for but they don’t go on the international stage and say that they never do anything wrong except for the occasional mistakes. Can you imagine what the Taliban might be able to come up with in the way of testimony? There would be a lot of countries involved in Afghanistan that would prefer to forget what they did there-

    1. Kouros

      I was shocked, shocked, to see clips with mothers handing their babies over the airport wall… Those are not mothers… Or they hope to say, oh, you have my baby, now take me too!

    2. The Rev Kev

      Yeah, about all those troops giving water to those kids-

      Human Rights Watch Watcher
      During the opening months of the war on Afghanistan, the US bombed Kabul’s main water supply networks, destroying much of the infrastructure. As a result, the city suffered from a severe water shortage that ultimately led to a cholera outbreak.

      Pretty sure that bombing a country’s civilian water supply network is actually an international war crime.

  8. John Sweeney

    Charlie Watts RIP: By all accounts a class act, a gentleman, faithful to his life partner, lived sober and happy, always kind to others. Today I really feel old for the first time. Rolling Stones were the first rock and roll band I ever listened to in 1964 when I was but 11 years old in Buenos Aires, Argentina and my late mother and father gave me two LP’s for Christmas that year. One was the UK edition of the Stones’ first LP release in 1964 and the other was the Beach Boys Surfin’ USA released in 1963. My parents thought the Beach Boys were great – “they look so wholesome,” my mother chirped. But the Stones captured my heart and I’ve been rocking ever since. The Stones also introduced me to the Blues and were the first LP in my lifelong passion: collecting Blues-Rock LP’s that today totals more than one million songs released worldwide by bands from Australia to Zaire. I was fortunate to see the Rolling Stones play live five times through the years, the last time in Orlando, Florida in 2015 and that last concert was by far (for me) their best live performance.

  9. The Rev Kev

    “For Cities, Big-Box Stores Are Becoming Even More of a Terrible Deal”

    This is really vile this tactic. Marquette should tell Lowe’s that sorry, as we have a budget shortfall due to what you did, we can no longer provide police coverage for your store. Good luck! By complete coincidence, a few minutes ago I stumbled on a series of tweets by a women named Stacy Mitchel who wrote a book about this subject and who seems to be involved with this article. These stores did the same in Maine but Vermont ‘has a law that compels cities to do the math on new development. The result is fewer big-box stores and more small businesses than any other statute.’

    1. John Beech

      As always, there are tax tactics to be deployed. Just requires political will. But honestly, I love shopping at Walmart and Target. Having lived overseas dependent on the post exchange makes me a believer. And proof I’m not alone are the great number of my fellow citizens who do the same. And I especially love Amazon. Heck, for a year and a half and counting I haven’t stepped foot inside a big box store. Don’t miss it. Buggy whips were all the range once upon a time. What is it with folks not liking change? I say this hypocritically because if we’re being honest, I am often quite resistant to change, myself! But go back to small shops with limited inventory? Nope, I’d rather the big box store. As for Amazon, I’ve liked Bezos’ approach from the get go and won’t give up using the service.

      1. lyman alpha blob

        Maybe what people don’t like is the gross wealth disparity created by the likes of Walmart and Amazon, making billions for their owners while creating an underclass dependent on government assistance because of the poverty wages they pay.

        The middle class was nice while it lasted.

        1. hunkerdown

          Nah, the middle class was the problem the whole time. They ran interference against the poor, as one does in an all-down alliance such as a class system. They incompetently dictate morality to themselves, let alone their comrades, never mind other classes. There’s no warrant for their continued existence, at least not from the working class.

          I’ll be glad to see the back of that divide-and-rule op.

          1. lyman alpha blob

            I guess it depends on how you define ‘middle class’. I was thinking more of the fact that you used to be able to work in a factory and afford a home, a couple kids, and modest vacation every so often – in other words the working class was raised up. Today, not so much.

            1. hunkerdown

              Oh, middle income! Yeah, those are pretty good people. As long as they don’t go thinking they’re somehow above the rest of the working class in rank. When they do, we get lolbertarian tradies.

      2. cnchal

        Change doesn’t mean what you think it means. The brutal working conditions endured by Amazon warehouse employees are driven by the same technology that allows one to order crapola while occupying the Throne in the Throne Room.

        Amazon shopper = whip cracking sadist

  10. Hank Linderman

    The Reverb article didn’t mention it, but the swamp ash shortage has got to be related to the weevil that is killing swamp ash trees everywhere it invades. In Kentucky, the ash trees stick out because they are dead or dying, ALL of them.

    They also didn’t mention that Leo Fender chose swamp ash for Telecasters because it was cheap.


    1. JohnnySacks

      I don’t quite understand the supply and demand part of it, but I’m somewhat anti consumerism. They’ve been producing guitars for decades, do the finer ones ever wear out to the point of needing replacement? With the internet it should be easy to buy and sell used guitars, especially the top of the line. Population growth is flat so is demand somehow expanding? Seems like they’re all competing for an increasing share of a decreasing market for new quality guitars.

        1. Tom Doak

          I went to a Jackson Browne concert a few years ago and he had something like 15 guitars lined up on stage to choose from for his various songs. At one break, he picked one up and said, “I haven’t played this one for a while,” and then chose a song for it accordingly.

          1. Mantid

            A great example of why global warming is off the chain, way too much stuff. It’s akin to bobble heads for the first 40,000 people who attend a sports game. What a thoughtless horde humans have become. What happened to considering others less fortunate? Oh well, when nearly all humans are burnt, drowned, or infected, perhaps a few people will realize, you can’t take it with you. But, boy howdy, you can sure have it while you’re here.

            The exact opposite of Charlie Watts’ clarity and minimalism – even though he was assuredly quite rich. Well, maybe not. He had a grip of drums that would fill a room.

        2. JP

          Banjos with their long poorly attached neck a a real pain to tune and keep in tune. I tried to get Rainsong to make a carbon fiber banjo but they declined

      1. Hank Linderman

        They don’t wear out completely, guitars are generally very repairable. There are lots of guitars being made, prices keep dropping, many guitarists have lots of different instruments (guilty) to do various sonic chores. Most old guitars lose value, but the standards – Fenders, Gibsons and Martins until about 1965 – can become very valuable. I have a 1965 Stratocaster I bought for $225 that was worth close to $25k at one point before 2008. It’s probably worth about $15k today. New guitars don’t have the same vibe or sound as the old ones, unless you’re willing to spend lots of dough. A Fender Custom Shop Strat that would compete with an old guitar could start at around $4k and go up considerably from there. Gibson now sells “Murphy Lab” guitars that are in the $6-10k range. Meanwhile, you can buy Chinese knock offs that are *okay* for as little as $200.

        There was a time when old guitars were out performing the DOW. Not anymore I suspect – and those who truly care about old guitars are dying off. It’s a real question if the market will collapse with the passing of the generation that are up in the 60’s and 70’s.


        1. zagonostra

          I was lucky enough to come across a Gibson J45 in a consignment store in a small town where I live part of the year. It had no in brand label, it just said “Gibson.” It had a nasty crack on the sound board. The lady who runs the shoppe knew me and and had seen me play guitar at a local venue. She asked me what I thought it was worth. I said I had no Idea since it did not have any labels, but I told her since it was a Gibson, she should fix it up because it was probably worth some money, I told I’d offer her $100, since I have more guitars than I should and wasn’t looking to rip her off. She didn’t want the hassle of fixing it so she sold it to me, original case and all. It turned out to be a “Kalamazoo Girls” guitar.

          The history of guitars made in Kalamazoo, Michigan is fascinating. Since the men were off fighting war, many of the guitars made during this era were made by women who went to work in the factories. The tone on this guitar is amazing, even tough I have to play it two whole tones lower than standard tuning since it needs new tuning machine heads.. I have other acoustic guitars going back to the mid 70’s but they just don’t have the same warm tone and the action is amazing.

      2. lordkoos

        Guitars can wear out eventually if they are played regularly for years and years, but generally most parts can be repaired or replaced.

        These days, guitars are not for playing, they are for hoarding. Middle-class amateurs collect guitars, there are innumerable guitar forums on the ‘net and people are always eager to show off their hoard. It seems like every other celebrity (usually they are men) collect guitars, while wealthy rock stars have literal warehouses full of vintage guitars and amps. There are a lot of guitars out there that rarely if ever get played, let alone played in public. As a semi-retired professional musician I can remember when guitars were mostly owned by people who knew how to play them… due to collectors prices, the old guitars from the 50s and 60s that I grew up playing are now unobtanium for the average musician.

    2. Bob White

      This article also pushes the old trope of “For many electric guitar players, wood is mostly about tone”
      With an ELECTRIC guitar, the type of wood has nothing to do with tone (all in the pickups, electronics, hardware, etc.)
      You even have people saying the finish is important (poly or nitro).
      I still challenge any human to be able to detect the difference…
      Stability of the wood in the body and neck is very important, though.

      Totally different with an ACOUSTIC guitar, almost all about the wood. (as the article Wukchumi mentions)

      1. Hank Linderman

        Ummm, the wood def makes a difference in how an electric guitar sounds, but it is less obvious than in an acoustic. You can play identical successive serial numbered solid body guitars, built from the same tree, and they will sound different when played unplugged. (This is a great way to separate the wheat from the chaff when you go guitar shopping.) Some woods are snappier, some are a little sluggish, the length of note sustain and so on. (Yes, the design, electronics and hardware have an impact as well.) This also makes a difference in perceived response (how the instrument reacts to the player), and the weight makes a huge difference! A Gibson Les Paul can weigh 11 lbs., that’s a lot to have hanging around your neck for a show.

        Plus, let’s not forget how the guitar looks in the mirror when you first put it on…

        Then again, I could play Billy Gibbon’s rig and he could play mine and you could tell us apart blindfolded. So, the wood makes a difference, but it’s only one of several factors.


      2. PHLDenizen

        Wood absolutely makes a difference.

        My Spector NS-2 neck-through with EMGs sounds nothing like my Warwick Thumb neck-through with EMGs. The former snarls in the upper-mid range, the latter is a little more polite with a strong growl in the lower-mids. The Warwick also has a more velvet tone in the upper range. There are construction differences to be sure, but the Warwick growl is consistent across models with the same woods. And the same is true of my Spector, although the Hazlab 9V preamp has a gooey bite that seems to be unique.

        The Spector has a maple neck and maple body wings. The Warwick has a wenge neck and ovangkol body.

        1. Bob White

          I would suggest reading this:

          So even Les Paul says it does not matter…

          Hank: “You can play identical successive serial numbered solid body guitars, built from the same tree, and they will sound different when played unplugged.”
          Yes, so the wood does not matter… unless you are saying you can hear different parts of a tree… hmm

          However, if you like a guitar better, and it makes you want to play it, that would make a difference…

          1. Hank Linderman

            I just remembered a story about PRS Guitars trying to duplicate Dickey Betts’ old Les Paul. They made instrument after instrument and couldn’t make something that Dickey felt worked. But then, they tapped the original guitar and measured the note of the resonance, then looked for a piece of mahogany that had the same resonant frequency – problem solved. So, it’s not hard to imagine finding pieces from the same tree with different resonant frequencies.


      3. lordkoos

        Wood does make a difference on solid body guitars. On an electric guitar, pretty much every element, including the hardware, affects the sound.

    3. bassmule

      Players talk about wood and tone all the time. And have very different opinions about what “tone wood” even means. Here’s a link to my bass-playing brothers and sisters on the topic. Much of it is foolishness, but there are some who appear to be very well informed.

      Tone Wood

      1. Mantid

        A lesson I learnt a long time ago is that it’s not the guitar, it’s what you do with it. Listen to some old Lightnin’ Hopkins. He didn’t need a $4,000 guitbox. A favorite quote “You can’t play the music until you can forget the instrument”.

    1. Samuel Conner

      I encountered that one at today’s Automatic Earth “Debt Rattle” news roundup, and excitedly clicked through. It’s a 4+ year old review; worthwhile but not highly timely.

      Perhaps RI is making a subtle point that the apparent official panic, or whatever it is, over the fact that ivermectin has veterinary uses is concealing the fact that the drug is widely used in humans and has an excellent safety profile.

      Ivermectin is on the WHO’s list of “essential medicines”

      Poking around today, I learned that ivermectin can also be used to poison blood-feeding external parasites, such as mosquitos and bedbugs. More news one can use.

      Maybe the COVID pandemic will not abate until everyone is taking “the anti-helminth agent that must not be named” in order to control bedbugs.

      1. Mikel

        Good stuff.
        I believe that it has worked against Covid and should be considered as a treatment.

        I’m just want more info about WHY this is working against this Covid virus. And does it work against any other viruses? And if not, why? And it’s more about understanding what makes Covid as infectious/dangerous as it is. Not knocking this as a treatment.

        1. Samuel Conner

          This relatively recent paper (lead and corresponding author Pierre Kory)

          has information about hypotheses/evidence regarding Ivm’s mechanism(s) of action in COVID.

          Two that I recall are
          a) anti-inflammation
          b) interacts with the CV spike protein (I believe this is from molecular dynamics simulations)

          I think there were others, including interference with viral replication. The 2017 Nature publishing group article

          has a brief section on known anti-viral activity of the agent.

          The official hysteria about people’s interest in Ivermectin is baffling. Maybe they’ll calm down when it gets formulated as an adjuvant to less- or in-effective anti-COVID therapies, patented, and sold to the public dear.

          1. Samuel Conner

            And here is an in vitro study, with promising results, on anti-COVID combination therapy — remdesivir and ivermectin.


            That’s a very early stage study, but if Ivermectin is in fact useful as a stand-alone drug, it will certainly potentiate at least some other agents which are not officially disapproved, and perhaps Ivermectin will get to market as an anti-COVID agent in combination therapy before its potential as an inexpensive stand-alone therapy (granting the assumption that it has this potential) is officially acknowledged. But I would think that once it is employed in combination therapy in humans, it will be hard for physicians to refuse patients’ requests (particularly patients who cannot afford the combination therapy) for it alone.


            A mildly alarming thought is CV might develop resistance to single-agent therapies, and perhaps the safest approach to therapy is to devise multi-component therapies that attack multiple targets in the virus’ life-cycle, in the hope that simultaneous resistance to all the mechanisms of action of the combination therapy would never spontaneously appear.

          1. Lambert Strether Post author

            > As to its action with C19, it acts at both the viral stage to suppress replication and it the second inflammatory phase as well. A remarkable drug….

            I would say “is claimed to act.” I don’t think anybody has the mechanism (if any) nailed down. That’s why this is a “review article’!

        2. Ian Perkins

          I don’t think anyone really knows why IVM has antiviral properties, though there are a few hypotheses, but:
          Ivermectin treatment was shown to increase survival in mice infected with the pseudorabies virus (PRV) [2] and reduced titers of porcine circovirus 2 (PCV2) in the tissues and sera of infected piglets [3]. In addition, Xu et al. reported the antiviral efficacy of ivermectin in dengue virus-infected Aedes albopictus mosquitoes [4]. Ivermectin was also identified as a promising agent against the alphaviruses chikungunya, Semliki Forest and Sindbis virus, as well as yellow fever, a flavivirus [5]. Moreover, a new study indicated that ivermectin presents strong antiviral activity against the West Nile virus, also a flavivirus, at low (μM) concentrations [6]. This drug has further been demonstrated to exert antiviral activity against Zika virus (ZIKV) in in vitro screening assays [7], but failed to offer protection in ZIKV-infected mice [8].

          1. Yves Smith

            KLG, who is a biomedical prof and was on the front lines of AIDS research back in the day, says that ivermectin is in the advanced stages of multiple clinical trials outside the US as an HIV treatment. He says it has performed well in all of them.

      2. Procopius

        Several years ago I was infatuated with Charles E. Pierce, same as I have been in turn with William F. Buckley, Jr., Dan Froomkin, Rachel Maddow, and Glenn Greenwald. I was disenchanted after he bought in to Russiagate and recently I’ve been thoroughly annoyed by his “Don’t eat the horse pills.” I didn’t subscribe to his column when he put up the paywall and I won’t subscribe now that he’s taken it down, but I really, really want to tell him, “The FDA has approved Ivermectin for use by humans, the pharma companies manufacture Ivermectin for use by humans, and the FDA has approved doctors prescribing it for other medical conditions.” But he already knows that.

  11. Tom Stone

    I have noticed something odd about discussions of the Real Estate market at Wolf Street and elsewhere.
    Lots of talk about whether or not it is a bubble and what might cause the bubble to pop.
    The consensus seems to be that the bubble will last until the Fed raises rates…
    But there is no mention of the resurgence of Covid-19 and its variants and there’s no discussion about the effects of the Homeless population doubling or tripling over the next few Months.
    In the middle of a pandemic.
    Our supply chains are held together with bubblegum and duct tape, there’s no plan to feed or house several Million newly Homeless let alone get them medical care.
    And it’s as though these issues don’t exist.

    1. Wukchumni

      I’m more of the opinion that since the vast majority of any proles worth is in the value of their home, the Fed et al realizes that at this point the housing bubble has to go on forever, there being no alternative.

      Everybody ensconced in their very own garage mahal is highly cognizant of how well they’ve done (your rust belt location may vary) as the humble home blew out the competition where in this age, the miracle of compound interest means you can double your money by putting it in the bank and waiting about 222 years to see it happen in real time.

      …saving is for losers

      Headline from a Tijuana-adjacent fishwrap:

      Will San Diego’s home price be nearly $1 million a year from now? A new study thinks so

      1. Mason (US Home Prices 1890-Present)

        It’s just one chart but someone took the price of housing and matched it with inflation. If this data is accurate, then the bubble has been completely re-inflated to 2008 proportions. I doubt its as big as 08′ but we really need a large correction.

        I’m watching all the remaining lots in my neck of the woods that could of been good sites for townhouses and small apartments get taken up for McMansions at around 950,000$ and sometimes over a million dollars.

        The most aggressive gentrification possible as mandated by the city government and powered by the FED.

        Our housing market and industry has become just evil at this point.

        1. Mildred Montana


          “Our housing market and industry has become just evil at this point.”

          Not the housing market and industry. The Fed. Without cheap money and massive loan purchases by the Fed, risk comes back into the market, interest rates rise, and it corrects. But of course the Fed has no intention of raising rates or halting quantitative easing anytime soon. From here on in it can only maintain the status quo or do more damage. It has the power to spin money infinitely and therefore can be infinitely evil.

          Speaking of the Fed, central bankers are convening tomorrow—virtually. It will be a classic “no-business meeting” (as John Kenneth Galbraith would call it), where they plan not for action itself but for a credible version of the appearance of action.

      2. lordkoos

        Part of this is that the US dollar is becoming ever more worthless, and more rapidly in recent times.

        It’s difficult to understand what our “leadership” class is thinking as ever more Americans fortunes are in decline.

    2. Mikel

      “And it’s as though these issues don’t exist.”

      I think that’s the purpose of these divorced from reality, fantasy finance markets.

      It’s also a marker of how fragile a society becomes when it has trouble dealing with any reality that challenges long held beliefs, myths, and general way of doing things.

      This is a violent country. Can you imagine the hostility that would emerge, lashing out in all directions, if the comfortable had to deal with dwindling asset values and a pandemic?

      1. Mikel

        Just to add…I’m also using “comfortable” more in reference to state of mind- not engaging with issues that cause cognitive dissonance.

    3. Socal Rhino

      I read that more as necessary but not sufficient – the bubble won’t pop as long as rates are low and QE continues.

      Wolf Street of late has been fixated on “dollar debasement” to the point that I barely skim the articles after reading the charts, there’s nothing that hasn’t been said repeatedly nearly every day. No Stephanie Kelton fans on that site, I’d say.

    1. Après Moi

      Pilger has good memory, thank g. It is important to remember that the Afg. govt US helped to overthrow was progressive, and interested in the country’s development.
      It is also good to remember that in the 1920s, Afghani king and queen were so impressed with the advancement of women’s condition under the new Bolshevik govt that they wanted to implement similar policies. The then rulers of the area (aka British empire) quickly overthrew both.
      And then we say ‘oh, they are so medieval, stuck in the past!’ Well, yes, you’d be too if your every attempt at growth and development were aborted and sabotaged by big powers.

  12. Henry Moon Pie

    Umair Haque–linked here before and one person I know who likes American cultures less than I do–takes a look at American cruelty and its sources. He begins by recounting a story he witnessed personally as people step over and ignore a man writhing on a sidewalk, clearly in distress, in the midst of middle class shopping and entertainment district. He then asks why:

    What happens, though, to a society which values things above people? Well, it comes undone. Its social bonds disintegrate. Its towns and cities begin to die. Public investment dries up. Life becomes something like a hyper rat race — people compete to the death, for more and more consumption, for more stuff. Everything revolves around how much you have — not whether or not you’re a decent, sane, wise, intelligent, friendly person. Social status begins to belong to sociopaths, who quickly climb up ladders of prestige, the most ruthless and ambitious trampling the rest. Norms of indifference and cruelty evolve — and norms of gentleness and friendship and kindness and decency never do.

    Haque includes some statistics about consumption and investment levels that I had not seen before–shocking statistics–and makes a good if incomplete argument.

    1. lyman alpha blob

      Great article – thanks for posting.

      I really do miss real communities. I thought I had a decent one in my neighborhood but it’s all going to hell as the Airbnb operators and house flippers have gained traction. That, and other “entrepreneurs” have figured out how to abuse the HIPAA laws to run businesses housing the mentally ill in residential neighborhoods. Now the cops come pretty frequently to deal with people waving knives around or having other episodes, because the recent immigrants who have been hired as caretakers can’t handle things on their own. Just another externality that gets foisted by the “entrepreneurs” onto the rest of us who might like having a real community and not just a sense of one.

      1. Henry Moon Pie

        We’re a neighborhood of old, long-time owners, some long-term renters from some of the few small landlords, a Section 8 highrise, abandoned houses and a few slumlords. That last category is the most corrosive to the neighborhood from my observation in the ten years I’ve been here. The properties deteriorate rapidly, soon the taxes aren’t paid, and they go on and form another LLC and do the same somewhere else.

        The newest presence is an NGO that replaced the previous community center that closed when an administrator stole all their money and grants were canceled. I volunteered in the food bank prior to Covid and saw how that aspect of the NGO was run, and it wasn’t pretty. In any case, they’re buying properties and using them as halfway houses for people in drug rehab, their primary business. Pretty much the situation you describe in your neighborhood, but the cops here are on quasi-strike since the feds slapped their wrists and mandated some changes. So it just spills over onto the neighbors among whom we are not so far, but we have a friend, a single woman our age, who is pretty much surrounded by this new NGO money-maker.

        The corruption is hip-deep wherever you look.

  13. urblintz

    This looks like a costly venture. Nancy, how did your beloved belligerents pay for it? Oh, wait…

    “Last month, during high-level talks in Honolulu, the US Indo-Pacific Command and the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) agreed to build a new base in the island nation, an archipelago of more than 600 islands strewn across the Western Pacific, some 3,700 miles from Hawaii.

    The move is seen as another component of the Biden administration’s continued effort to increase its footprint in Oceania.

    However, details about the base, so far, are scarce, causing anxiety for some FSM citizens who are worried about disruptions to their way of life, and wary about the idea of American military expansion in the region.”

      1. The Rev Kev

        British comedians in WW2 joked that the true purpose of all those barrage balloons was to stop the island sinking under the weight of all the American military hardware that was now stationed there.

        1. Wukchumni

          When I was a kid, I remember looking at maps, and it sure was a lot of uphill to get to Calgary from LA, good thing I never was elected dogcatcher or congressman, but I repeat myself.

          The hope here is that the Pacific Ocean call it quits around Lemon Cove, in terms of climate change and rising levels.

          We would have wickedly different winters-the High Sierra abruptly halfway up to the high point of the Himalaya in a hurry, set against a backdrop of the sea.

        2. Ian Perkins

          That Hank Johnson, U.S. Representative for Georgia’s 4th congressional district, didn’t appear to be joking! I’m surprised he didn’t worry about Guam falling off the edge of the world.

        1. hunkerdown

          I’m glad I wasn’t the only one who got the impression that he was cynically using the stigma and legal regime around CSE to demand a renegotiation of the contract, and all but came right out and said it.

        2. Henry Moon Pie

          Hard to ascertain what the damages are. After all, he was just showing he was a good ‘Murcan almost from birth.

          Jumping into pools going after money, even unpleasant ones, has been a thing for us Anglo cultures for quite some time (with an appearance by Ringo and backed not by a Beatles song but by Thunderclap Newman):

          Magic Christian

        1. Henry Moon Pie

          That is wonderful. And the fire popping during the recording, it’s great. As an appreciator of Cream before there was a Blind Faith, I wouldn’t relegate Clapton and Baker to “noisy,” but i get the attraction of that simplicity.

          Let me throw this one at ya: “Can’t Find” performed by a very young Bonnie Raitt, bassist Freebo by her side as usual, with Lowell George from Little Feat sitting in.

            1. lyman alpha blob

              Best live album evah! Richie Hayward’s drumming is great – somehow he managed to be just a fraction of a beat late all the time and the groove he creates doing that is tremendous.

            2. Henry Moon Pie

              The waves of the Tao travel far and wide in the cosmos. Or the scraping and AI are more widespread than I imagined. “Dixie Chicken” showed up on my Daily Mix Feed.

  14. Questa Nota

    School Ventilation, San Fernando Valley Edition

    The Valley can be a lot hotter than the rest of LA.
    A teacher reports that her classroom temperature stays around 80.
    Do the kids, or the teacher, get much learning done in that environment?
    Or does learning begin to start as the ambient temperature cools in autumn?

    1. curlydan

      I’d argue if the AC is on and the humidity low, then you can learn in that environment decently. My house is at 79 on hot days. It’s bearable.

      I remember going to a non-air conditioned school in Texas where we weren’t allowed to wear shorts. There were some tough days in August and early September.

      I would worry about the quality of air filters they have since opening the window from a temperature perspective would be totally counterproductive.

      1. Ian Perkins

        Even with filters that catch all virus particles, it takes time for an AC to catch all the air in a room, if it ever does. Panasonic do ACs with ‘nanoe-G’ technology and stuff that supposedly removes 99% of viruses from a 25 cubic metre room in two hours, but the information on their website didn’t seem consistent (the graph showed more like 50% in two hours!), was from a private testing company they’d employed, and was for an initial dose of virus, not a continuous source. (We have them at work, so I checked them out – I think similar technology is used in many ACs nowadays, with similarly dubious claims.) It’s often hot here, 30-35C, but I like a noticeable through-draught from an open door and window, especially now we’ve got the more infectious delta.

      1. Ian Perkins

        Years of living in the tropics, and I’m chilly at 78F/25C, positively f-f-f-freezing at 68F/20C, which we get two or three nights a year. Luckily (for me) ACs here rarely manage to get rooms much below 25C. This room’s currently at 30C/86F (no AC), my comfortable temperature, not sure whether to put the fan on or not.

    2. Michael

      San Diego version from the parent faq’s

      What ventilation protocols is the district implementing to keep my student safe?

      Ventilation is a key component to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in schools. As the district moves to having more people on campus and students in classrooms, ensuring adequate room ventilation is key to reducing the airborne transmission of COVID-19 indoors. The District’s Back to School Guide, page 15 provides more information related to ventilation.

      Adequate ventilation is achieved by bringing in more outdoor air through open windows and doors, and by providing recirculated air that is highly filtered. These are best practices for diluting or displacing airborne COVID-19 particles, if the particles happen to be present in a room.

      San Diego Unified is finalizing a program to provide air conditioning in every classroom in every school. The vast majority of schools are air-conditioned.

      The district has planned for maximum ventilation, with our goal to maintain five air exchanges per hour in the classroom. This is based on guidance from Harvard and the University of Colorado Boulder and in collaboration with our UCSD expert panel. In order to achieve this, the district has implemented the following:

      All existing HVAC systems have been serviced and filters have been replaced. Higher levels of filtration (i.e. Merv-13) are being installed in all systems that can accommodate them. Systems have been adjusted to bring in more outside air.
      Using natural ventilation (opening doors and windows, even when the HVAC is running).
      Using air purifiers with HEPA filters (provides a higher level of filtration). Air purifiers have been allocated to each site, and the numbers of purifiers in a classroom will vary based on MERV rating, room size, number of windows, type of HVAC system, etc. Air purifiers will be placed in strategic locations for maximum effectiveness.

      San Diego Unified is monitoring ventilation effectiveness in our school sites to ensure that the air exchanges are occurring and that the air is healthy for students and staff. This is done by monitoring remote sensors spread across the district. Indoor particulate sensors, which can measure microscopic size particles that could transport COVID-19 virus, are deployed and will be rotated to various rooms to gather information and inform decisions. Also, carbon dioxide (CO2) detectors are in place in various classrooms to test the air. This has a different function than the particulate sensor and will help to determine the amount of fresh air entering the room. Neither monitor detects COVID-19 but does help us to determine if we are providing quality room ventilation. If either sensor records concerning numbers, district staff will determine what measures can be taken to correct the issue.

      1. Ian Perkins

        A lot of that looks pretty unaffordable here, and in many other countries. Doors and windows we do have!

  15. Wukchumni

    Having lost a source of income (as opposed to it bleeding the USSR dry) in the ‘stanbox, and leaving in a much more hurried manner than the Soviets, is just another Bizarro World contrast of the USA & USSR, the dynamic duo who just had to do everything different in getting around to the same result.

    Final Soviet Withdrawal from Afghanistan – February 15, 1989 – ABC News Nightline (full broadcast)

    1. Polar Socialist

      leaving in a much more hurried manner than the Soviets

      That can’t be right! In the agreement of 14th May 1988 Soviet Union promised to withdraw their troops in 9 months. Which they did, to a day.

      In the February 2020 agreement US promised to withdraw troops in 13 months, and even overstayed that for 3 months.

      9 vs. 16 months, so Soviets did it in almost half the time. That must have been the more hurried manner, surely.

      1. Anthony Stegman

        There is a difference between promising to do something and actually doing it. The Russians agreed to an exit timeline, planned for the timeline, and executed their exit plan in a well-managed fashion. In contrast, the Americans agreed to an exit timeline but them hemmed and hawed in the planning for the timeline, and then found themselves in a panicked situation as the exit deadline approached with still no real exit plan. Thus the chaos at the Kabul airport.

  16. TimH

    “Schools in England to receive CO2 monitors to improve ventilation”

    Along the same lines as:

    “Insure xxxx to protect against theft”

    “Buy now to save money”

  17. antidlc

    In yesterday’s Links, pjay asked:

    Has the detailed critique of the Pfizer decision by Peter Doshi in the BMJ been posted or discussed at NC? If so, sorry I missed it. If not, it should be. Have his points been addressed or refuted?

    Today John Campbell has a 15 minute video out “Questions for the FDA” where he walks through the FDA press releases and refers to Peter Doshi’s blog entry.

    Campbell points out the “sloppiness” of the FDA in terms of the efficacy info the FDA quoted in its press release.

    1. Katniss Everdeen

      In this video, Chris Martenson delves into the wording of the fda approval statement.

      Don’t know if it’s true or not, but by his reading the approved “vaccine” is not the same as the pfizer “vax” that’s being currently administered. He claims that “comirnaty” is legally distinct from the pfizer drug, which is still being administered under a recently renewed EUA.

      He further claims that actual “comirnaty” is not currently available in this country, and that the confusion is being used to justify mandates that would not be legal under an EUA.

      He further suggests that if an employer institutes a vaccine mandate and an employee decides to comply, the employee should insist on being given “comirnaty,” since, unlike pfizer, the manufacturer has some liability for harm.

      Like I said, I have no idea if his read is correct, but his analysis is compelling.

      1. Ian Perkins

        I haven’t watched that video, but Pfizer says, “The vaccine has been available in the U.S. under Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) since December 11, 2020 (as the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine).” –
        And according to the FDA, “The vaccine has been known as the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine, and will now be marketed as Comirnaty.” –

        1. Ian Perkins

          I’ve listened to the first five minutes or so, and I think he’s confusing what the remaining EUA is about. What I gather, from Pfizer and the FDA, is it’s got a BLA – full authorisation – for over-16s, but it’s still available under an EUA for under-16s, for whom there isn’t enough data in yet for a BLA.
          And even he says he thinks Comirnaty is the same thing as the Pfizer vaccine.

          1. antidlc



            The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued an Emergency Use
            Authorization (EUA) to permit the emergency use of the unapproved product,
            Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine, for active immunization to prevent
            COVID-19 in individuals 12 years of age and older and to provide a third dose
            to individuals 12 years of age and older who have been determined to have
            certain kinds of immunocompromise.
            COMIRNATY (COVID-19 Vaccine, mRNA) is an FDA-approved COVID-19
            vaccine made by Pfizer for BioNTech. It is approved as a 2-dose series for the
            prevention of COVID-19 in individuals 16 years of age and older and is also
            authorized for emergency use in individuals 12 through 15 years and to
            provide a third dose to individuals 12 years of age and older who have been
            determined to have certain kinds of immunocompromise.
            The FDA-approved COMIRNATY (COVID-19 Vaccine, mRNA) and the
            EUA-authorized Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine have the same
            formulation and can be used interchangeably to provide the COVID-19
            vaccination series.1

      2. antidlc

        FDA letter to Pfizer:

        On August 23, 2021, FDA approved the biologics license application (BLA) submitted by BioNTech Manufacturing GmbH for COMIRNATY (COVID-19 Vaccine, mRNA) for active immunization to prevent COVID-19 caused by SARS-CoV-2 in individuals 16 years of age and older.

        On August 23, 2021, having concluded that revising this EUA is appropriate to protect the public health or safety under section 564(g)(2) of the Act, FDA is reissuing the August 12, 2021 letter of authorization in its entirety with revisions incorporated to clarify that the EUA will remain in place for the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for the previously-authorized indication and uses, and to authorize use of COMIRNATY (COVID-19 Vaccine, mRNA) under this EUA for certain uses that are not included in the approved BLA. In addition, the Fact Sheet for Healthcare Providers Administering Vaccine (Vaccination Providers) was revised to provide updates on expiration dating of the authorized Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine and to update language regarding warnings and precautions related to myocarditis and pericarditis. The Fact Sheet for Recipients and Caregivers was updated as the Vaccine Information Fact Sheet for Recipients and Caregivers, which comprises the Fact Sheet for the authorized Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine and information about the FDA-licensed vaccine, COMIRNATY (COVID-19 Vaccine, mRNA).

        It looks to me that the FDA approval is for something new called COMIRNATY, which *may* be a branded version/packaging of the original vaccine.?? The EUA for the original Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine stays in place, but that EUA also now covers certain uses for COMIRNATY that the FDA approval does not cover.

        Not sure what other “certain uses” will be. Hmmm…

        1. Ian Perkins

          It looks to me that the FDA approval is for something new called COMIRNATY, which *may* be a branded version/packaging of the original vaccine.??

          From your previous comment, “The FDA-approved COMIRNATY (COVID-19 Vaccine, mRNA) and the EUA-authorized Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine have the same formulation.”

      3. Lambert Strether Post author

        > He claims that “comirnaty” is legally distinct from the pfizer drug

        Comirnaty is a rebranding of the same formulation. There may be additional regulation involved in approving the packaging.

  18. The Rev Kev

    “The Afghanistan crisis has exposed Global Britain’s delusions of grandeur”

    Boris must have been very disappointed at his treatment by Biden. In the middle of everything going on in Kabul, old Joe could not be bothered phoning him for a day and a half. Donald Trump had his “America First” campaign but old Joe promised instead that “America is back.” Now to Boris’s horror, it looks like it is still “America First” – with the UK and the other allies swinging in the wind. And this after the UK’s defence establishment had been reconfigured to be basically support for US forces. How must Boris be feeling now. Probably like that feeling where you are walking up a gangplank – and you suddenly feel that there is no ship. And unfortunately for the UK, two major carriers does not a great power make. Not that Boris & the Tories will ever admit that.

  19. urblintz

    Morning Joe…oh boy:

    “A news conference held by doctors in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, to urge the public to get vaccinated amid a statewide surge of COVID-19 was undermined online as false reports claimed the physicians had walked off the job.

    Doctors who participated in Monday’s event told The Associated Press that they did not walk off the job or refuse to treat patients. The false claims, they said, have led to threats and harassment toward their colleagues and hospitals.

    Here’s a closer look at the facts around this event.

    CLAIM: A group of 75 doctors in Florida walked out of their jobs to protest the number of unvaccinated patients overwhelming the state’s hospitals.

    THE FACTS: No, that’s not true. The news conference took place before office hours and was intended to encourage people to get vaccinated against COVID-19 and wear masks, according to doctors who participated. It wasn’t a protest or walkout.

    MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” covered the news conference early Monday morning with a misleading on-screen caption: “SOUTH FLORIDA DOCTORS WALK OUT IN PROTEST.”

    1. Glen

      Morning Joe is such a great gig. Spend the first half of your life making government and your country a dysfunctional mess, and the second half of your life reporting on how the government and country is a dysfunctional mess.

      Even the self licking ice cream cone is envious.

    2. NotTimothyGeithner

      If people stopped the self flagellation of watching Morning Joe, would he have any viewers?

      1. hunkerdown

        It’s been said that Meet The Press’ target demographic numbers only 537. If nobody but Congress, the President, and the VP watched it, the show will serve its purpose.

  20. Mikel

    RE: The continuous evolution of SARS-CoV-2 in South Africa: a new lineage with rapid accumulation of mutations of concern and global detection

    “…Like several other VOCs, C.1.2 has accumulated a number of substitutions beyond what would be expected from the background SARS-CoV-2 evolutionary rate. This suggests the likelihood that these mutations arose during a period of accelerated evolution in a single individual with prolonged viral infection through virus-host co-evolution.”

    Beyond what would be expected from the background SARS-CoV-2 evolutionary rate….

    But surely Pfizer has expected this with their claim of “shot that protects against all variants”?

    By my calculations, a breakout of this could push the fear levels up and the stock market indices up a few thousand points. (Never let ’em see ya sweat!)

    1. John Beech

      This has given me a genuine chuckle. Not a consumer of porn (but so what if I were?), but my point is, I truly admire the business model as engendered in the OnlyFans phenomena. This, because it enriches those who actually do the work instead of the pimps.

      I’m a believer in life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness so I’m distressed the Mrs. Grundy’s of the world don’t get their noses cut off for sticking it were it doesn’t belong! Color me a believer in ladies earning a living any way they damn well please. Put another way, it’s none of my business how you (or anybody) goes about earning a living as long as you don’t infringe upon me!

      1. Dandelion

        OnlyFans is a MLM scheme. Content creators get 20% of the content revenue generated by the creators they recruit. 1% of content creators make almost all the money and they make it not through their own content but via recruiting.

        This is why VISA and MasterCard put the brakes on: they demanded OnlyFans verify their recruited content creators were both of age and not coerced, not trafficked. OnlyFans balked not because they didn’t want to produce content but because they didn’t want to invest in the technical moderation required to provide such verification. Apparently, they’ve decided to make the investment, or more likely a new investor has appeared. But it’s the same problem PornHub faced: the viewer cannot know that what they’re viewing is actually voluntary and, as it turned out with PornHub, a great amount of it was not. Raped girls and women have struggled to get PornHub to take down videos of their assaults, many of which have been viewed hundreds of thousands of times.

        Average monthly income for an OnlyFans content creator is $180. So OF actually DOES enrich the pimps, or recruiters, rather than those doing the work.

        Fo a long time now, NGOs like Amnesty have said that “sex work” is the route out of female poverty. But since it’s a demand-driven business, with ever-increasing demand and now a multi-billion dollar corporatized business at that, there must always be more supply. Meaning more impoverished woman. During the GFC, media in Greece reported thats one bright spot was that a man could now buy a woman for the price of a sandwich. Demand-driven sex-work as a business either requires an increased rate of female poverty OR trafficked women.

        Your everyday Barnard grad might think it a hoot to post nudes online and get some cash for it. Your average Joe might say prostitution is no different than working at McDonald’s. On the other hand, McD’s workers are protected by OSHA, and if OSHA regs applied to prostitution, full hazmat PPE would be required. And I think the average guy tossing fries would likely object to a long line customers pegging him every 15 minutes.

        In Marxist terms, all work is coerced: the pay is the coercion. If prostitution is work, ie if sex work is work, then it too is coerced. And there’s a word for coerced sex. Leftists who support prostitution need to re-read Marx and Engels. Might even try dipping into Alexandra Kollantai. I’m always amazed at the leftists who decry wage slavery and the conditions at Amazon warehouses but cheer on an exploitation wherein the average age of entry for female human beings is 14 years old and the average lifespan of the female worker is death at 34.

        1. JBird4049

          Really? My apologies as this is one of my berserk buttons. Visa and MasterCard are almost Victorian in their Wokeness, not caring.

          To make some analogies, this sounds like calling the poor lazy, stupid, or uneducated all while making them easier to exploit. Just who is exploiting whom? And how are they doing so?

          All the politicians, government officials, and activists blathering on about the increasing homeless since the last decades of the Twentieth Century. The homeless are either piles of helpless, even stupid children needing charity and diapers, with the help of the sainted activists, or lazy, crazy, addicted anarchic criminals that need to cracked down on by the cops. That there are either no jobs or that the jobs pay not much or that the cost of everything including housing and medical are obscene is mentioned as the true causes. Nothing ever changes. Decent jobs are denied and the costs of living keeps rising faster than anyone’s wages.

          The problem with the efforts to protect the downtrodden sex worker is that all the downsides are on the worker. Most people need to get money somehow to pay for food, clothing, shelter for themselves and often their families. Most people would not choose this work. They are just not given much choice. Aside from just dying virtuously.

          Most effort to “protect” sex workers leaves them more vulnerable to exploitation. In making sex work of any kind illegal, which usually includes the very efforts of advertising, screening, protection, even mutual support efforts by the workers themselves that mitigate the dangers, illegal, they become more vulnerable to predation by the customers, human trafficking, slavery, and often by the police; this is often accompanied by the lack, or the cutting off, of social support to the workers and the refusal to acknowledge the lack of employment, income, or other opportunities all the while figuratively, or not, scolding them for their “shameful” behaviors.

          The stopping of such advertising places like Backpage, Craigslist, and Twitter, the legal actions against apps, screening organizations and cooperatives, the increased legal actions at the federal level against the workers’ and their organizations. The increase in police abuse. The blackballing by financial institutions like banks like Wells Fargo and Citibank, payment companies like Visa, MasterCard, and PayPal. The refusals to solve the steady increases in hunger and homelessness, in general and against families in particular by all levels of government. All this happening since Financial Collapse and Covid Pandemic makes any arguments against coercion and against prostitution hollow.

          People will do what they need to support themselves and their loved ones. The poor, parents, the disabled, the unemployed. Those will little opportunities to adequately support themselves.

          It is so easy to denounce their efforts, while leaving them open to the predations of the vicious, the powerful, the opportunistic, and the corrupt, which includes the police, while doing jack to help them. It is beyond hypocritical.

        2. Ian Perkins

          In Marxist terms, all work is coerced: the pay is the coercion.

          Most sex workers I’ve met are well aware of that, even if they’ve never heard of Marx. But most here have three options basically: remain in poverty in their villages (less and less of an option), work in garment factories, or take up sex work. Many choose the latter with their eyes wide open to what it entails, and it’s worth noting that various garment manufacturers have been keen to fund NGOs and so on trying to eliminate sex work – which would weaken the bargaining position of their workforce, with twice as many women competing for the same number of jobs.

  21. antidlc

    The Frontline Critical Care group:

    Frontline Covid-19 Critical Care
    Distributors of IVM are throttling allocations to U.S. pharmacies. Shipments of the lifesaving drug are being seized by customs.

    Meanwhile, the irrefutable science for IVM lays bound and gagged in the FDA’s cellar.

    Scientists: RISE.
    Sorry, I am unable to give a direct link to the actual tweet. You have to go to their twitter page.

  22. PHLDenizen

    RE: fertility and Covid

    But nothing in the vaccines is a likely candidate to explain these complaints. Experts agree that a probable indirect factor is stress. Getting a new vaccine is itself stressful, Shirazian says, and many kinds of stressors can throw off a menstrual cycle. The physiological effects of these tensions might disrupt pathways that drive menstrual timing.

    “Experts agree” is doing a lot of work. I imagine an experimental vaccine might also “disrupt pathways that drive menstrual timing”.

    “Stress” is also coded language for women are just silly, hysterical, foolish, obstinate creatures. It’s more than a little offensive and condescending. If pharma trials started waving off every adverse event as “stress”, it would not surprise me if the FDA acquiesced. Cardiac arrest, liver damage, renal failure. It’s all stress! Sure, why not?

    At least the piece attempts to be even handed by including erectile issues. Although I haven’t heard any grumbling about dudes being at all concerned with it. Seems to serve as a defense against gender bias.

    1. Yves Smith

      Yes, this is just offensive. And stress produces late and light periods, not the complete cessation of periods, heavy breakthrough periods in women who’ve been menopausal for years, and heavy and early periods.

    2. petal

      The other day I was essentially told I was making sh-t up by a couple of MDs about my concerns with the mRNA vaccines aggravating autoimmune disease and I didn’t know what I was talking about. I was talked down to badly and completely dismissed. They think I’m an idiot and hysterical. PHL, condescending is a good word. According to them it’s not happening at all anywhere. Told a coworker later what had happened and she said even she had read about it and was aware of it happening(she’s in the same field I am and is working on a covid-related dev project). But yeah, according to the docs, the vaccines are 100% safe, causing no problems, etc etc. None of that is happening, folks, so rest your pretty head. Anyone with concerns is being brushed off by those that know better. They are going to force you to get that vaccine one way or another. Medical waiver? Yeah good luck getting one.
      As someone that used to do research in the field, womens GYN issues were never seen as “sexy” to begin with, so good luck to those trying to draw attention to it, get funding to explore it, or have it taken seriously. Yes, Yves, what’s going on with it is very offensive for so many reasons.

      1. Dandelion

        I’m worried this is going to create havoc at my mother’s assisted living facility. The young female attendants there are refusing the vaccine for just this reason — they’re of childbearing age and not themselves greatly at risk from COVID. They simply will not take even the slightest risk to their fertility.

        But now the facility itself and also the state are going to mandate vaccine as a condition of employment. I expect some will quit. The problem then will lie in replacing them: the facility MUST have by law a certain number of attendants, and hiring in our area is already difficult. I suspect they are going to have to increase pay in order to meet that requirement. Which is great for the workers — they do deserve it — it’s a tough, demanding job that also requires a great deal of multi-tasking ability as well as emotional intelligence and intestinal fortitude.

        But I’m also afraid the end result is that residents are going to end up having to pay a great deal more for care, and many will not be able to afford it. Then what?

        Right now, unvaccinated workers are given antigen tests daily, vaccinated workers given swab tests weekly. But unvaccinated visitors and vendors are welcome inside, masked, provided they have no fever and answer the screening questions correctly. And residents themselves are free to come and go, amidst unvaccinated family members and to restaurants etc. I’m not sure why the current testing regimens aren’t sufficient, given the vaccine is non-sterilizing, so I’m not sure why someone should lose their job for not vaccinating.

        1. Ian Perkins

          For what it’s worth, that article does say,
          Any changes to menstrual cycle seem to be short-lived
          The stories collected by Lee and Clancy usually describe only brief disruptions to menstruation. “From what we have seen so far, it appears that the changes to the menstrual cycle seem to be short-lived, just a couple of cycles,” Lee says.

          (The researchers are both women, and extremely sympathetic – their study started when one of them had post-vax period disruption.)

    3. antidlc
      EU looking into new possible side-effects of mRNA COVID-19 shots

      hree new conditions reported by a small number of people after vaccination with COVID-19 shots from Pfizer (PFE.N) and Moderna (MRNA.O) are being studied to assess if they may be possible side-effects, Europe’s drugs regulator said on Wednesday.

      Erythema multiforme, a form of allergic skin reaction; glomerulonephritis or kidney inflammation; and nephrotic syndrome, a renal disorder characterised by heavy urinary protein losses, are being studied by the safety committee of the European Medicines Agency (EMA), according to the regulator.

      Further on down:

      It disclosed the new assessments as part of routine updates to the safety section of all authorised vaccines’ database and added menstrual disorders as a condition it was studying for vaccines, including those from AstraZeneca (AZN.L) and J&J (JNJ.N), after the EMA’s update last week.

    1. Basil Pesto

      “Are those who oppose a ban on cars or a radical reduction in speed limits sociopaths, given the huge number of people they are knowingly consigning to death or maiming?”

      for fuck’s sake

    2. lyman alpha blob

      Thanks flora. Been seeing lots of panic about schools opening and kids dying lately. According to the CDC data cited by Greenwald, 361* children total under the age of 18 have died since the start of the pandemic. Very good to know.

      *Not exactly sure where Greenwald pulls the figure from – my reading of the CDC chart linked to in the article says 385 deaths from 0-17 years of age. That’s government statistics for you I guess.

    3. K.k

      He wants schools open and let em rip? Not sociopathic at all, just a rational dude doing cost benefit analysis. I am curious how many dead kids it would take for that cost benefit analysis to change. I bet for many of these people it would be just one , their own.

  23. Mikel

    “Apes say hello and goodbye, just like people do, research shows” CNN

    A particular subreddit would enjoy this news.

  24. lordkoos

    A younger friend of mine works as the elementary & middle school band teacher for the Kenmore school district (suburban Seattle). I had emailed him the link from yesterday’s NC “The Coming School Opening Covid Train Wreck” and asked him how he and his colleagues felt about returning to work and teaching in person. His response:

    “Dude, you have no idea. It’s a complete joke. No testing, no health attestation, no batch testing, no temp checks of any kind. They’re doing this to downplay the inevitable surge, and cover their asses so they cant get sued if and when people die, because there will be no way to prove that anyone got it from school.

    Its a mixed bag. Unions are in bed with administrators, administrators are in bed with the state. When enough parents push for in person instruction this is what happens.

    My job specifically is super high risk because I see all the kids at a school – hundreds in a small room, unlike classroom teachers who are only in contact with their 20 kids for the year. They don’t care though. Districts are offering online only as an option, for any family who wants, where just a small handful of teachers are teaching remotely. 99% are all working on site, no choice. I’ve accepted that I’m going to contract the virus, or quit and lose my continuing contract. It’s not a great situation.”

  25. newcatty

    From the front lines, thanks for sharing. Complete sympathy for this band teacher. Its actually being forced to being told that you must choose your health or your livelihood. Its a train driven by greed and callousness. Its probably cold comfort for your friend, but those classroom teachers, with 20 kids ( wow, there are many schools with classroom “loads” of closer to 30 +), are also going to be exposed to the virus. Everyone of their students are going to be in a large gathering of other kids and adults. Those classroom teachers don’t have an isolated shelter with their kids in their rooms the entire time at school. Band is a great example.

    The train wreck is unavoidable. Its just around the bend. There’s trouble ahead, there’s trouble behind( nod to the Greatful Dead). At least San Diego sounds like its doing some credible efforts to make their district’s schools a safer environment. Don’t know what I would do, if in band teacher’s place. It would depend on so many factors. Heard stories of teachers quitting, taking an earlier retirement. Some states are desperate for certified teachers. Would your friend consider moving? Some smaller cities or towns just might have better regard and respect for their teachers.

    1. lordkoos

      Not sure if he would consider moving or not, possibly. He’s young and just got the job 2-3 years ago so he’s not going to retire.

Comments are closed.