2:00PM Water Cooler 10/15/2021

By Lambert Strether of Corrente.

Patient readers, I got an extremely late start today. More later –lambert UPDATE All done!

Bird Song of the Day

A lively bunch! Especially the bongo player weighing in every so often….

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Patient readers, I have started to revise this section, partly to reduce my workload, but partly to focus more as an early warning, if that is possible. Re workload: I eliminated charts for positivity, because I think private tests make those numbers useless. I cut back to a single hospitalization chart, because I think state-by-state data is more useful than a national aggregate. I retained vaccination (new administrations per day, plus percentage total), case count, and death rate (plus total). To spot new variants if and when they emerge, I changed the world chart to include countries that have form creating new variants: the UK, Brazil, and India, with Portugal as a baseline. I also retained rapid riser counties (though for now, with things so relatively quiet, I am including only this week’s data). Winter is coming! Do feel free to make additional suggestions. (If there were a global map that showed the emergence of new variants dynamically, for example, that would be helpful.)

Vaccination by region:

Coercion works? Or boosters? (I have also not said, because it’s too obvious, that if by Bubba we mean The South, then Bubba has done pretty well on vax.)

56.7% of the US is fully vaccinated (CDC data. Mediocre by world standards, being just below Czech Republic, and just above Turkey, as of this Monday). We are back to the stately 0.1% rise per day. I would bet that the stately rise = word of mouth from actual cases. However, as readers point out, every day those vaccinated become less protected, especially the earliest. So we are trying to outrun the virus…

UPDATE A reminder that people who push the “Blame Bubba” narrative are full of it:

UPDATE “The Unvaccinated May Not Be Who You Think” [Zeynep Tufecki, New York Times]. “Some key research on the unvaccinated comes from the Covid States Project, an academic consortium that managed to scrape together resources for regular polling. It categorizes them as “vaccine-willing” and “vaccine-resistant,” and finds the groups almost equal in numbers among the remaining unvaccinated. (David Lazer, one of the principal investigators of the Covid States Project, told me that the research was done before the mandates, and that the consortium has limited funding, so they can only poll so often.) Furthermore, their research finds that the unvaccinated, overall, don’t have much trust in institutions and authorities, and even those they trust, they trust less: 71 percent of the vaccinated trust hospitals and doctors “a lot,” for example, while only 39 percent of the unvaccinated do. Relentless propaganda against public health measures no doubt contributes to erosion of trust. However, that mistrust may also be fueled by the sorry state of health insurance in this country and the deep inequities in health care — at a minimum, this could make people more vulnerable to misinformation. Research on the unvaccinated by KFF from this September showed the most powerful predictor of who remained unvaccinated was not age, politics, race, income or location, but the lack of health insurance.” • Well, well, well. So that’s what the moral panic was concealing (besides reinforcing partisan and class prejudice among liberal Democrats).

Case count by United States regions:

Seems to be a little bit of jitteriness and waffling in the descent, which is no longer so steady.

Simply tape-watching, this descent is as steep as any of the three peaks in November–January. It’s also longer than the descent from any previous peak. We could get lucky, as we did with the steep drop after the second week in January, which nobody knows the reasons for, then or now. Today’s populations are different, though. This population is more vaccinated, and I would bet — I’ve never seen a study — that many small habits developed over the last year (not just masking). Speculating freely: There is the possibility that natural immunity is much, much greater than we have thought, although because this is America, our data is so bad we don’t know. Also, if the dosage from aerosols drops off by something like the inverse square law, not linearly, even an extra foot of social distance could be significant if adopted habitually by a large number of people. And if you believe in fomites, there’s a lot more hand-washing being done. On the other hand, Delta is much more transmissible. And although readers will recall that I have cautioned against cross-country comparisons, I’m still not understanding why we’re not seeing the same aggregates in schools that we’ve see in Canada and especially the UK, although we have plenty of anecdotes. Nothing I’ve read suggests that the schools, nation-wide, have handled Covid restrictions with any consistency at all. So what’s up with that?

Even if hospitalizations and the death rate are going down, that says nothing about Long Covid, the effect on children, etc. So the numbers, in my mind, are still “terrifying”, even if that most-favored word is not in the headlines any more, and one may be, at this point, inured.

MWRA (Boston-area) wastewater detection. Readers seemed to like this, so I’ll add as a regular feature:=

The Massachusetts Water Resources Authority (MWRA) service area includes 43 municipalities in and around Boston, including not only multiple school systems but several large universities. Since Boston is so very education-heavy, then, I think it could be a good leading indicator for Covid spread in schools generally.

From CDC: “Community Profile Report October 14, 2021” (PDF), “Rapid Riser” counties:

Speculating freely: One thing to consider is where the red is. If air travel hubs like New York City or Los Angeles (or Houston or Miami) go red that could mean (a) international travel and (b) the rest of the country goes red, as in April 2020 and following. But — for example — Minnesota is not a hub. If Minnesota goes red, who else does? Well, Wisconsin. As we see. Remember, however, that this chart is about acceleration, not absolute numbers. This map, too, blows the “Blame Bubba” narrative out of the water. Not a (Deliverance-style) banjo to be heard. (Red means getting worse, green means bad but getting better.)

Hospitalization (CDC Community Profile):

Death rate (Our World in Data):

Total: 741,979 737,795. The downward trend in death rate begins anew, mercifully. We approached the same death rate as our first peak last year. Which I found more than a little disturbing. (Adding: I know the data is bad. This is the United States. But according to The Narrative, deaths shouldn’t have been going up at all. Directionally, this is quite concerning. Needless to see, this is a public health debacle. It’s the public health establishment to take care of public health, not the health of certain favored political factions. Also adding: I like a death rate because it gives me a rough indication of my risk should I, heaven forfend, end up in a hospital. I should dig out the absolute numbers, too, now roughly 660,000, which is rather a lot.)

Covid cases in historic variant sources:

I added Chile, Peru, and Iran, based on remarks from the Brain Trust. I also changed to a log scale. Sorry for the kerfuffle at the left. No matter how I tinker, it doesn’t go away.

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“But what is government itself, but the greatest of all reflections on human nature?” –James Madison, Federalist 51

“They had one weapon left and both knew it: treachery.” –Frank Herbert, Dune

“They had learned nothing, and forgotten nothing.” –Charles Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord

Biden Administration

“As Budget Bill Hangs in Limbo, Kyrsten Sinema Heads to Europe” [New York Times]. “Ms. Sinema’s office declined to say how long she would be abroad, what countries she was visiting, how the trip was being paid for and whether she was doing any additional fund-raising for her own campaign. Her political team had reached out to set up meetings in London and Paris, according to two people familiar with the matter.” • Since Schumer is silent, he wants her to do what he’s doing. Lucy and the Football!

UPDATE “Pete Buttigieg has been on paternity leave amid Biden supply-chain crisis” [New York Post]. “The Department of Transportation revealed late Thursday that Secretary Pete Buttigieg has been on paternity leave since mid-August amid the massive ongoing supply-chain crisis that is threatening the timely delivery of everyday consumer goods and holiday gifts, according to a new report. Besides several recent television hits, Buttigieg has been lying low, Politico reported, citing his office. Buttigieg’s team told the outlet that the secretary has been on paternity leave for nearly two months to spend time with his husband and two newborn babies and plans to continue to give them support in the coming weeks. The office had not previously announced his time off.” • So Harris-Buttigieg 2024 not looking like a winner, then?

Republican Funhouse

“Anti-Trump Republicans endorsing vulnerable Democrats to prevent GOP takeover” [The Hill]. “A group of anti-Trump Republicans on Thursday endorsed a slate of Democrats and centrist Republicans in the 2022 midterm elections to fight against former President Trump’s hold on the party. The Renew America Movement (RAM) announced it is backing a slew of lawmakers running for reelection. The group was founded by a group of moderates within the GOP after the Jan. 6 insurrection, which was fueled by Trump’s lies about the election being stolen in November…. Also included in the list are 11 Democratic members of the House and Senate, most of whom are running in tight elections. Among them is Sen. Mark Kelly, who is running for a full term next year in a marquee Senate race in Arizona, as well as “front-line” House members such as Reps. Abigail Spanberger (Va.) and Jared Golden (Maine). ”


I like Briahna Joy Gray a lot. Via alert reader DJG:

Guest Burden-Stelly: “Kamala is a failed Condaleeza Rice.” Ouch! Interestingly, both speakers think the Reconciliation Bill won’t happen.


“‘Out of the Shadows: The Man Behind the Steele Dossier’ | Oct 18 only on Hulu” [ABC]. • So they’re cranking up RussiaGate again…

“Trump Shares His Thoughts On Golden Showers In Bonkers Off-Script Moment” [HuffPost] • As if the entire smear weren’t bonkers! (Although perhaps Steele will revive it on the way to his book deal?)

Stats Watch

Manufacturing: “United States NY Empire State Manufacturing Index” [Trading Economics]. “The New York Empire State Manufacturing Index fell fifteen points to 19.8 in October of 2021 from 34.3 in September and well below market forecasts of 27, pointing to a slower factory growth in the NY state but solid overall. New orders and shipments increased, though by less than they did last month. At the same time, labor market indicators pointed to ongoing growth in employment and the average workweek. Meanwhile, the delivery times index inched up to a record high and both the prices paid and prices received indexes held near record highs. Looking ahead, firms were still very optimistic that conditions would improve over the next six months.”

Retail Sales: “U.S. Retail Sales” [Trading Economics]. “Retail sales in the US unexpectedly increased 0.7 % mom in September of 2021, following an upwardly revised 0.9% surge in August, beating market forecasts of a 0.2% fall, in another sign of resilience from consumers despite supply constraints which affect vehicles and computers among other goods.”

Consumer Sentiment: “United States Consumer Sentiment” [Trading Economics]. “The University of Michigan’s consumer sentiment for the US fell to 71.4 in October of 2021 from 72.8 in September and below market forecasts of 73.1, preliminary estimates showed. The gauge of current conditions dropped to 77.9 from 80.1 while the expectations subindex went down to 67.2 from 68.1. Meanwhile, inflation expectations for the year-ahead edged up to 4.8% from 4.6% while the 5-year outlook eased to 2.8% from 3%. The Delta variant, supply chain shortages, and reduced labor force participation rates will continue to dim the pace of consumer spending into 2022. There is another, less tangible factor that has contributed to the slump in optimism: confidence in government economic policies has significantly declined during the past six months.” • That last reading is odd; Democrats are supposed to be good on the economy.

Inventories: “United States Business Inventories” [Trading Economics]. “Manufacturers’ and trade inventories in the US rose 0.6 percent from a month earlier in August of 2021, following an upwardly revised 0.6 percent gain in July and in line with market expectations.” • And so they ought to be up.

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UPDATE Commodities: “Rio Tinto cuts iron ore output guidance after ‘difficult’ third quarter” [Finance Politics]. “Rio Tinto has cut production guidance for its flagship iron ore business and several other divisions after a “difficult” third quarter and revealed another delay at its most important growth project, a huge underground copper mine in Mongolia’s Gobi desert….. ‘Not a great quarter for Rio with the collapse in the iron ore price and weaker than expected production in bauxite, aluminium and copper,’ said Christopher LaFemina, analyst at Jefferies. ‘An operational recovery is needed for these shares to work.””

Retail: “White House Warns Supply Chain Shortages Could Lead Americans To Discover True Meaning Of Christmas” [The Onion]. • A new angle on Christmas starting before Halloween, for sure.

Retail: “Domino’s delivers rare fall in U.S. sales as slowing demand, labor crunch bite” [Reuters]. “Domino’s Pizza Inc posted its first drop in U.S. same-store sales in over a decade on Thursday, as the world’s biggest pizza chain grappled with a slowdown in delivery demand and a tight labor market that created a shortage of drivers. As COVID-19 curbs ease, Americans have started to eat out at restaurants after more than a year of ordering food at home, slowing sales at Domino’s that gets most of its business from deliveries and take-away orders. Adding to its woes, Domino’s also said a severe labor crunch in the United States dealt a blow to its business, forcing it to reduce store operating hours and compromise on delivery service times.” • So, Domino’s orders are a good proxy for Covid perceptions….

The Bezzle: “Antiquities Dealer Admits Mass-Producing Fakes He Sold for Years” [New York Times]. “‘Over the course of three decades I have sold thousands of fraudulent antiquities to countless unsuspecting collectors,’ [Mehrdad Sadigh] said, according to the statement he read in State Supreme Court in Manhattan, adding, ‘I can only say that I was driven by financial greed.’…. In describing his scheme in court, Mr. Sadigh said that to hide his deceptions he had hired a company to flag, remove and bury Google search results and online reviews that suggested that some of what he had sold might be inauthentic. Mr. Sadigh also admitted to getting others to post glowing, but false, reviews of his gallery, inventing dozens of appreciative customers. After Mr. Sadigh was arrested in August, prosecutors said he appeared to be among the biggest purveyors of fake artifacts in the country, based on his ‘substantial financial gains’ and the longevity of his business…. Matthew Bogdanos, the chief of the district attorney’s Antiquities Trafficking Unit, said in August that Mr. Sadigh had been using a sort of assembly-line process, involving varnish, spray paints and a belt sander, that seemed designed to alter contemporary mass-produced items so they would appear aged.” • Sadigh gets probation, but the Sacklers get away clean. Go big or go home, I guess.

Manufacturing: “Maker of plane parts Boeing calls flawed supplied Spirit, others: Report” [Channel News Asia]. “An Italian sub-contractor at the centre of the latest snags to emerge on Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner has worked for a broad set of aerospace companies including Spirit AeroSystems, according to industry sources and documents. Boeing and regulators said earlier some 787 jetliner parts were improperly made over the past three years. They were supplied indirectly by Manufacturing Process Specification (MPS), as a sub-contractor to Leonardo. In March, Boeing warned Spirit AeroSystems about suspected problems with parts at MPS and asked it to use alternative suppliers as it continued an audit of the Italian company’s operations, according to a letter seen by Reuters. It also asked Wichita-based Spirit to trace any MPS parts it had used back to 2017 and to treat them as “suspect nonconforming,” meaning they would be subject to further checks. ‘Out of an abundance of caution while Boeing conducts further testing and evaluation, Boeing has also decided to consider all product processed by MPS to be suspect,’ it said.” • “A snag.”

Manufacturing: “Ex-Boeing test pilot indicted for fraud in 737 Max probe” [ABC]. “Boeing’s former 737 MAX test pilot, Mark Forkner, was indicted for fraud Thursday for allegedly misleading regulators about problems tied to the aircraft’s two fatal crashes. The ex-chief technical pilot is the first Boeing employee to be charged over the 737 Max’s failures…. ‘In an attempt to save Boeing money, Forkner allegedly withheld critical information from regulators,’ Acting U.S. Attorney Chad E. Meacham for the Northern District of Texas said in a release. ‘His callous choice to mislead the FAA hampered the agency’s ability to protect the flying public and left pilots in the lurch, lacking information about certain 737 MAX flight controls. The Department of Justice will not tolerate fraud – especially in industries where the stakes are so high.'” • Well, maybe things have changed at Justice since Obama’s day:

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Today’s Fear & Greed Index: 48 Neutral (previous close: 39 Fear) [CNN]. One week ago: 34 (Fear). (0 is Extreme Fear; 100 is Extreme Greed). Last updated Oct 15 at 12:51pm.

The Biosphere

I linked to this lovely video on bears and salmon once before:

IIRC, the Taku River Tlingit got all of 300-odd hits for it. Now, they’re up to over 3300! Maybe the NC link helped. So I thought I’d give it another bump.

Health Care

UPDATE How to assess the ventilation in a hotel room. A truly amazing thread:

UPDATE “Why America Scrapped Its Pandemic Travel Bans” [The Atlantic]. “When the United States announced this week that it would relax its ban on travelers from Europe and other countries after 18 long months, the goal was not to aid the suffering travel sector, nor was it to appease frustrated European travelers who spent much of the summer watching Americans travel freely to their respective countries while being unable to make the same trip in reverse. It didn’t even appear to be influenced by a shift in the pandemic situation, nor Europe’s comparably higher COVID-19 vaccination rates. In the end, the impetus for the long-awaited (and arguably long-overdue) policy change appeared to be submarines…. But in giving its allies what they wanted, the U.S. also ended up confirming one of their key arguments: that these restrictions, like many of the byzantine rules that govern the way people live and travel, had little basis in fact or science. By lifting its travel restrictions in an apparent bid to appease jilted partners, the U.S. helped illustrate how nonsensical the ban was in the first place.” • China would disagree that travel bans are nonsensical, as would New Zealand (until the variants we and the UK spread through our negligence or sociopathy overwhelmed their defenses. Our ban was nonsensical because it wasn’t backed up by quarantines. As it is, given that even vaccinated individuals transnit, we’ve thrown the door open to the next variant (which current vaccines might not protect against, either). Let ‘er rip!

UPDATE “Covid Testing, Turnaround Times Are Still Uneven This Far Into Pandemic” [Kaiser Health News]. “In one recent week, a New Yorker got a free covid-19 test in a jiffy, with results the next day, while a Coloradan had to shell out $50 for a test two cities from her hometown after a frantic round of pharmacy-hopping. A Montanan drove an hour each way to get a test, wondering if, this time, it would again take five days to get results. While covid testing is much easier to come by than it was early in the pandemic, the ability to get a test — and timely results — can vary widely nationwide. A fragmented testing system, complicated logistics, technician burnout and squirrelly spikes in demand are contributing to this bumpy ride. ‘We’re still where we were 18 months ago,’ said Rebecca Stanfel, the Montana woman who had to wait five days for test results in Helena last month after being exposed to someone with the virus. Unpredictable waits can be a problem for those trying to plan travel, return to school from a quarantine — or even get lifesaving monoclonal antibody treatment within the optimal window if they do have covid. The White House said in early October it plans to buy $1 billion worth of rapid antigen tests to help improve access to the hard-to-find over-the-counter kits. But people are also facing problems getting molecular testing, including the gold-standard PCR tests.” • So the adults in the room were in charge the whole time?

The Gallery

Good for Banksy, but what a metaphor:

Screening Room

“The Man Who Finally Made a ‘Dune’ That Fans Will Love” [New York Times]. Possibly. I hope so! But this is the most sycophantic, obsequious profile I have ever read. One of many gems: “Villeneuve’s laughter, I would learn, often precedes statements of searching honesty.”

Zeitgeist Watch

John Lewis — not that John Lewis — trolls everybody:

(Although I have to agree with the account’s comment on insurance generally.) With excellent results:

See, identity politics does work…

Our Famously Free Press

Good question:

“If they’re lying about a comedian taking horse medication, what are they telling us about Russia?”

“Gupta tells Joe Rogan CNN shouldn’t have called ivermectin ‘horse dewormer'” [The Hill]. “‘Do you think that’s a problem that your news network lies,’ Rogan asked. ‘Dude, they lied and said I was taking horse dewormer.’ ‘Yeah, yeah yeah, they shouldn’t have said it was horse’ dewormer, Gupta responded. ‘If you got a human pill, because there were people who were taking it, the veterinary medication, and you’re not obviously because you got it from a doctor, so it shouldn’t be called that.'” • It wasn’t just CNN. They all did it. Pack journalists inciting a moral panic. And then every liberal Democrat blue check on the Twitter piled on. They even corrupted Trisha Greenhalgh!

Class Warfare

UPDATE “The Great Resignation Is Accelerating” [The Atlantic]. “[T]he basic terms of employment are undergoing a Great Reset. The pandemic thrust many families into a homebound lifestyle reminiscent of the 19th-century agrarian economy—but this time with screens galore and online delivery. More families today work at home, cook at home, care for kids at home, entertain themselves at home, and even school their kids at home. The writer Aaron M. Renn has called this the rise of the DIY family, and it represents a new vision of work-life balance that is still coming into focus. By eliminating the office as a physical presence in many (but not all!) families’ lives, the pandemic may have downgraded work as the centerpiece of their identity.” • Note the effortless transition from “employment” to “the office.”

News of the Wired

Chris Arnade walking again:

Downtown Chicago seems empty and could be anywhere; but further out, more scenes that could be nowhere but America..

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Readers, feel free to contact me at lambert [UNDERSCORE] strether [DOT] corrente [AT] yahoo [DOT] com, with (a) links, and even better (b) sources I should curate regularly, (c) how to send me a check if you are allergic to PayPal, and (d) to find out how to send me images of plants. Vegetables are fine! Fungi and coral are deemed to be honorary plants! If you want your handle to appear as a credit, please place it at the start of your mail in parentheses: (thus). Otherwise, I will anonymize by using your initials. See the previous Water Cooler (with plant) here. Today’s plant (JB):

And also fish:

JB writes:

Like the Beverly Hillbillies, I have a cement pond. Back at the beginning of the pandemic (coincidentally but it’s a handy way of keeping time for this), and frustrated with the swimming pool’s general lack of use (maybe three or four times a year, max) I hit on a plan everybody told me wouldn’t work . . . to turn it into a 20,000 gallon aquarium for the purpose of housing koi. Why wouldn’t it work? Too deep to see the fish (I see them often enough to suit me), too hot in the FL sun (I’ve just begun planting water lilies in hopes of shading the water somewhat – more about that anon).

Anyway, you see, amongst other hobbies, I’m an aquarist of sorts. No, not to the extent you see amongst some, which I consider a bit overboard (like 10 aquaria in their homes), I’ve nevertheless kept a tank for more than forty years of marriage (both freshwater and marine, back to freshwater again at present). Had one as a kid living at home growing up beginning with an alligator and turtle as a child when these were still sold (and picked up the fish hobby from a neighbor as a preteen).

So I’ve one tank in the living room most would consider large. However, the big tank, the cement pond is a work in progress. One, which attracts various types of life in addition to the three goldfish with which I initially stocked it. These, incidentally now numbering over thirty because they’re breeding. And I was told by many pros this wouldn’t happen, either.

My point? I’m sharing a few photos to include some water lilies we have successfully introduced. Specifically a water lily blossom. And interesting (to me at least), is discovering they bloom during the day, fold up again in the evenings, and like an umbrella, unfurl again in the morning. How many times? Dunno, only discovered they do this today!

Note, I don’t feed these fish. They subsist exclusively on whatever they catch – mosquito larva I presume, plus who knows what else, bugs of various sorts that fall in, algae, maybe?

There are also frogs inhabiting the pond. Food for the fish? I doubt it as they’re generally as large if not larger than the fish. Maybe the other way around, dunno because I don’t keep a close count of noses. But I will note I began with three goldfish and have counted more than 30.

And birds come by occasionally. Have seen a blue heron perched on the pool deck wall but the water depth (3′-9′) probably dissuades it. No photo but I did snap one today of a cow bird eying the menu. Anyway, the water lilies are planted in pots we sink with pieces of concrete block for weighting, and soil covered in gravel to keep it floating away. Also have some reeds of some type. I’m indiscriminate at present as just making it all live is the goal. Fine tuning can wait. The only green thing growing better than the water lilies, which are now growing like gangbusters? The algae. That shit really grows!

Anyway, I am deriving great pleasure from my experiment. It took about 6 months for the chlorine to dissipate 100% before I tried introducing the fish back in January, or so. The plan is for koi but the darned goldfish I introduced for biological cycling (and testing the concept) are more fun right now. Three are getting rather large so they must be eating enough. Who knows, maybe they plow through the spawn? Again, dunno.

Photos attached for your flora and fauna pleasure.

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If you hate PayPal, you can email me at lambert [UNDERSCORE] strether [DOT] corrente [AT] yahoo [DOT] com, and I will give you directions on how to send a check. Thank you!2:00PM Water Cooler 6/8/2021

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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. Lakisha

    “Kamala is a failed Condaleeza Rice”

    As far as academics, for sure. She failed the California Bar Exam the first time. Only reelection, she ran unopposed for D.A. in San Francisco, still didn’t get all the votes with the write ins, and after that stunning victory, was mediocre, with crime increasing across the board and she commited a massive Brady violation.

    “San Francisco District Attorney Kamala Harris’ office violated defendants’ rights by hiding damaging information about a police drug lab technician and was indifferent to demands that it account for its failings, a judge declared Thursday.”

    Then she moved on as state A.G. to giving out Free Get Out Of Jail Cards, as to Steven Mnuchin for 38,000 illegal foreclosures and then onto bigger and better things.

    Even the mouthpiece for the San Francisco Family and the state Democratic Machine, The San Francisco Chronicle, seems to be turning on her as a major liability for the Democrats.


    1. Tommy

      As much as I dislike her, I have to say facts. She did not run unopposed for DA. She ran against the very popular and more progressive DA Hallinan. Identity politics was big in the campaign. I was here. Crime did increase, but I would not blame that on her….it then dropped muchly…. in her last year. To attribute crime rates to who is DA, or how many cops, is just not factual. But yeah….as Glantz’s Homewreckers book details…..her office had the whole case against Indymac/Onewest ready, and she threw it away. She also dropped an extensive Hallinan ongoing investigation of sex abuse in SF Catholic Church. As well as jailed more drug offenders here, and then as state AG….even though 90% of the state thinks it should be legal.

      1. Cork

        She ran unopposed for REelection in 2007, did you miss that?

        Votes %
        Kamala Harris (incumbent) 114,561 98.50
        Write-in 1,744 1.50
        Invalid or blank votes 33,160 22.19%
        Total votes 149,465 100.00
        Voter turnout 35.62%

        (that’s still a hell of a lot better than the less than 2% she got in the Democratic presidential primary.)


        As a lifelong third generation Democrats, we stay home on election day if that fraud is on any future ballot.

        If she is, a serious investigation of the Republican Party is in order for donations and campaign support, because the -democrats are done.

        1. Wukchumni

          So she followed the same course as Obama, who ran unopposed pretty much in 2004 when Jack Ryan dropped out because of a really messy divorce made public, and Alan Keyes filled in for the GOP, badly.

    2. Randy

      Harris’ conduct with that Brady violation should have gotten her disbarred, except prosecutors routinely get away with doing that. Undermine confidence in lawyers by messing up something in a trust account? Guaranteed discipline. Undermine confidence in the entire criminal justice system by withholding Brady information from defendants? Get out of jail free card. BIden’s selection of Harris as VP was one of the big reasons I left the president portion blank when I voted.

      1. Mr.Jones

        Not just that…

        “”To understand Harris’s 2005 moral failure, we must go back to 1963. That year, the United States Supreme Court affirmed the unique constitutional position of criminal defendants. In Brady v. Maryland, 373 U.S. 83 (1963), the Court announced that “the suppression by the prosecution of evidence favorable to an accused upon request violates due process where the evidence is material either to guilt or to punishment, irrespective of the good faith or bad faith of the prosecution.” This is because “society wins not only when the guilty are convicted, but when criminal trials are fair”; accordingly, “our system of the administration of justice suffers when any accused is treated unfairly.””


    3. FredrickHobbs

      Liability?…haha! Imagine Feinstein dying after her 90th birthday, and being replaced as senator by some complete wacko, without any hearings, appointed by the new governor, Larry Elder, the talk show host, if SOMEONE hadn’t grandstanded a judicial appointment, just like she failed to stop Kavanaugh.

      That someone? Kamala Harris

      Newsom told CNN’s Jake Tapper:
      “At the end of the day this recall petition was aided not just by [the French Laundry incident], but it was aided by a judge who ultimately doubled the amount of time that they could get this recall supported and ultimately on the ballot.”

      “Interestingly enough, Arguelles actually could have departed the Sacramento Superior Court before the ruling. He was nominated by former President Donald Trump for a federal judgeship, but his nomination was not supported by then-Sen. Kamala Harris, stalling the process and leaving him at the state level.

      “Ironically, her decision might lead to Governor Gavin Newsom’s recall,” The Judicial Nominations Blog wrote on Twitter.

      Didn’t happen, however, so now “The New Yorker reports Feinstein’s “short-term memory has grown so poor that she often forgets she has been briefed on a topic.” Diane Feinstein has already filed paperwork to seek reelection in 2024 when her senate seat comes up for reelection. The senator will be 91 at that time representing California’s mostly young Latino population. Uh huh.


  2. Carolinian

    Re Dune–definitely a gush but he is a visionary (Arrival and especially Bladerunner 2049).

    Whether it’s a good movie may be beside the point.

    1. cocomaan

      I liked Blade Runner 2049 a lot, but I watched Arrival at least four times.

      The Ted Chiang short story is good, but I think the movie elevated the material in a haunting way.

    2. cocomaan

      Also I saw your post about parks and hunting from yesterday. Baiting is illegal where I live in PA! You can get hammered hard by the game commish if you do it. I’ve only seen a few instances of it after hundreds of hours out in the woods during hunting season.

      That said, a lot of idiot hunters give the rest of us looking for food and fun a bad name. I’m really in it for the food, I just love that aspect of the sport.

      1. Carolinian

        I guess it’s legal here since they openly sell the stuff at places like Tractor Supply. It may only be legal for bowhunting however.

        We have lots of private land dedicated as “hunting preserves” with shooting stands or tree stands. Some of these are right next to the state park that is on the outskirts of town (in WW 2 it was a mortar practice range–old concrete bunkers are still to be seen).

        One result is that the deer are moving ever closer to civilization as represented by my own neighborhood and nearby parks. They are beautiful animals. I see them all the time.

        1. cocomaan

          Yes, they’re one of the few species to really do well in the anthropocene because they can adapt quickly to small woodlots, have a wide ranging diet, and have a social system that does well in those circumstances! Them, crows, and sparrows are the big winners of urbanization.

          I really do love everything about them, and watching them is a huge deal for me.

    3. Kurtismayfield

      After Arrival and Scicario, I will give Villeneuve the benefit of a doubt on a lot of material. But found Dune is difficult.. and trying to appease book fans while selling the movie to the wider box office is a tough needle to thread. I hope we see the conclusion, but in reality I don’t have my hopes up.

        1. Lady Cutekitten of Lolcat

          Has anyone called the police? They will go to her house to check and see if she is all right. Tell them you would like them to do a “welfare check “ on her and explain why.

        2. Katiebird

          Adding my fears. The longer her absence goes on the more worried I (we) are. Things happen to keep us out of contact but this is starting to feel like an extended period and seems very out of character.

        3. threeskies

          When you do have information to share here, would you kindly include Jerri-Lynn’s name so one can Command F to check. How do others anticipate your “letting us know” other than looking at the Links comments and the 2:00PM WC comments? I’m missing something?

        4. neo-realist

          What’s the big deal with Jerri-Lynn? She supposedly had a wi-fi fail a few days ago. That’s pretty normal. Sometimes it takes a while to get it going reliably. Maybe that is still an issue.

  3. Bill Smith

    “56.7% of the US is fully vaccinated”

    How do we calculate a discount to that number for the people who got their vaccine > 6 months ago and have a fading immunity?

    1. cocomaan

      I am three times removed from someone (stranger->friend->friend) sporting a book of hundreds of blank vaccine cards and is making good money selling them. Seems like the clientele was mostly young people.

      I haven’t seen anyone try to quantify black market vaccine cards, but I haven’t looked that hard either.

      As a result, I don’t really trust the headline number.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        Shots are being given out. Its not a metric of how many cards are out there. Since health departments are doing them, unusual rates of absenteeism and wasted materials would be noticed. We aren’t counting vaccine cards. I won’t travel, but I’ve taken my card to a few places and definitely didn’t have to show it despite the claim.

      2. Jessica

        Just guessing, but if some random person is selling blank vaccination cards, I wouldn’t think that would show up in any official record as a vaccination given.
        In other words, the percentage of people with vaccination cards would be higher, but the official vaccination count would be unaffected.

        1. cocomaan

          I guess I’m not sure how there’s a different record for the shot and another entirely different record for the card. What does that look like? Are there people getting the shot and not the card, then?

          Is this speculation or do we know that there’s absolutely no way that this vaccine number is gamed by people getting fake cards?

          1. Basil Pesto

            why would they use the distribution of cards as the source for vaccine data instead of appointments fulfilled? That makes no sense. If 10,000 cards were pilfered to sell later on the down low, why would they be counted towards the vaccine figures?

  4. TimH

    “Villeneuve’s laughter, I would learn, often precedes statements of searching honesty.”

    Contender for Private Eye’s Pseud’s Corner, I posit.

  5. zagonostra

    >Excerpt from Ivan Illich’s Medical Nemesis (1975)

    I have to agree with the Italian philosopher Giorgo Agamben who stated that “Illich has reached his ‘hour of legibility.”

    When people become aware of their dependence on the medical industry, they tend to be trapped in the belief that they are already hopelessly hooked.

    The true miracle of modern medicine is diabolical, It consists in making not only individuals but whole populations survive on inhumanly low levels of personal health. Medical nemesis is the negative feedback of a social organization that set out to improve and equalize the opportunity for each man to cope in autonomy and ended by destroying it.


  6. Henry Moon Pie

    This might have already been linked here, but I just discovered it today and thought it of high importance. It’s a study published by Nature way back in May and titled, “1.5 °C degrowth scenarios suggest the need for new mitigation pathways.”

    There is a background for the study. The IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change) has published a collection of scenarios mapping out possible ways that we might keep temperature from going above 1.5 degrees C (COL), or within the maybe possibly feasible area of 2 degrees of warming. None of these IPCC scenarios consider the possibility of zero or negative GDP growth.

    This study analyzes the IPCC scenarios and adds some of its own which do consider the impact of zero or negative GDP growth. This paper uses technical language and includes many complex graphs, but its conclusions are clear:

    As a first step to address this gap, this paper compares 1.5  °C degrowth scenarios with IPCC archetype scenarios, using a simplified quantitative representation of the fuel-energy-emissions nexus. Here we find that the degrowth scenarios minimize many key risks for feasibility and sustainability compared to technology-driven pathways, such as the reliance on high energy-GDP decoupling, large-scale carbon dioxide removal and large-scale and high-speed renewable energy transformation. However, substantial challenges remain regarding political feasibility. Nevertheless, degrowth pathways should be thoroughly considered.

    More specific findings:

    From this perspective, the scenarios with the lowest risk for feasibility are those in the ‘low energy-GDP decoupling’ group, which comprises our ‘Degrowth’ scenarios. All other scenarios show, in part substantially, higher energy-GDP decoupling than historically experienced as per Fig. 5 (e.g., the LED and our Dec-Extreme scenarios are over three times higher on average between 2020 and 2040).

    This is essentially the same point made by the EN-ROADS model. Even if ahistorically optimistic assumptions are made about technological advancement in energy efficiency, it is not enough to stay under even 2 degrees.

    The two German scientists who authored the study published in Nature move beyond that point to consider two other likely insurmountable obstacles to continued GDP growth during a transition to a carbonless economy:

    Firstly, all else unchanged, the higher the necessary speed of increasing renewable energy, the higher is the feasibility challenge. Second, considering that energy use is strongly coupled to GDP growth, an important measure for the performance of the energy-economic system is the energy return on energy invested (EROI). The energy system’s EROI is likely to shrink substantially during the transition to a renewable energy system and to remain lower than the EROI of current fossil energy systems afterwards. This is likely to have a limiting effect on GDP growth.

    Then there’s the problem of the front-end material resources required for any transition:

    Large-scale renewable energy deployment is unlikely to contribute to material use reduction, as renewables have a considerably higher material footprint than fossil fuels6,34. This may also raise critical risks of metal supply shortages. Further, material extraction drives conflicts with local communities around the world, especially in the global South. In order to be more sustainable, the global material footprint would need to be significantly scaled down, to ~50 billion tonnes per year (recognising the limits of aggregate indicators), which is highly unlikely to be compatible with growing GDP.

    The authors recognize the political challenges that will face implementing a degrowth policy:

    Compared with technology-driven pathways, it is clear that a degrowth transition faces tremendous political barriers. As Kallis et al. state, currently (p. 18) ‘[a]bandoning economic growth seems politically impossible’, as it implies significant changes to current capitalist socioeconomic systems in order to overcome its growth imperatives. Degrowth, moreover, challenges deeply embedded cultures, values, mind-sets and power structures. However, as Jewell & Cherp state, political feasibility is softer than socio-technical feasibility, with high actor motivation potentially compensating for low action capacity and social change being complex, non-linear and essentially unpredictable. Political feasibility further depends to a large extent on social movements formulating and pushing for the implementation of political programs, changing values, practices and cultures and building alternative institutions as well as scientists pointing the way to alternative paradigms. Consequently, degrowth implies modifications to the strategies for change, with a stronger focus on bottom–up social movements.

    In other words, Green Growth is a pipe dream. Degrowth is coming. The question is whether it will be managed to protect the vulnerable or allowed to crash into a Mad Max scenario.

    1. NotaDan

      Produced by Sinking Ship Entertainment, scratch that, more like

      “Sinking Ship Administration”

      Notice how they are assigning her to far flung remote and unimportant jobs to avoid embarrassment?

      Jesus H. Cringeworthy!

  7. OldBuddy

    About the supply chain shortages…California’s disaster is about to go nationwide:

    Air pollution requirements to buy non existent electric trucks and
    Destroying the Independent owner operator model by fiat.
    “But even if there were plenty of trucks in California, there wouldn’t be enough truckers to drive them — and it isn’t because the truckers are too old. Traditionally the ports have been served by Owner Operators,” Oakley says, who are non-union. But under AB-5, “California has now banned Owner Operators.”

    Biden’s infrastructure program to make this nationwide.
    Adios to “If you bought it, a truck brought it.” At least a an affordable price, if and when it finally arrives.


    1. Kevin Carhart

      Nonsense. There are many NELP reports about misclassification in drayage. You’re ignoring part of the evidence and cherrypicking who you point to, just from drivers who are happy with OO.



      I’ve never read you before. Did you get on here just to take an industry flak’s position on 1099?

  8. Wukchumni

    56.7% of the US is fully vaccinated (CDC data. Mediocre by world standards, being just below Czech Republic, and just above Turkey, as of this Monday).
    NZ went from 41% fully vaxed 2 months ago, to 61.8% today-a remarkable achievement, I think propelled by a distinct disdain for dogma there. It’s one of the least religious countries on this good orb, and the Kiwis aren’t running into the usual reasons why countries such as the USA are stuck in place percentage-wise.

    1. Greg

      Busy day for vax in NZ today, so your numbers need to go up a bit.

      “Super Saturday also moved the vaccination rate to 85 per cent of the eligible population for at least one dose, and 65 per cent were fully vaccinated with two.”

      Meanwhile NSW has hit 80% fully vaccinated apparently, so are going to start really cutting back on all other restrictions. I’m sure that’ll go well.

    2. Daniel LaRusso

      but you can still transmit and get very sick after the vaccine. Ask my monk friend, still can’t stay awake more than a few hours.

      the vaccine appears to be like a paracetemol … you take it and avoid the worst symptoms. But you still get and can pass it on.

      Is that the best NZ can do ?

  9. JBird4049

    On JB’s fish’s food, IIRC back during the Great Financial Crisis and all those abandoned homes and their pools, people from the sellers to mosquito control agencies were throwing mosquito eating fish into the pools; malaria and yellow fever used to be endemic in much of the United States and were transmitted by mosquitos. Whose larvae can live in almost any amount of stagnant water.

    Somehow, this reminds me of the catch-as-catch-can method of dealing with Covid. There didn’t seem to be any planning on the mosquito problem except being dealt with by the odd agency, seller, or neighbor. Fortunately all it took was some easily to get fish. Our current epidemic only has any real planning, it seems to me, with regards to profit or perception control.

  10. Michael Hudson

    Lambert, I don’t get your death chart. The line goes down. But your NUMBERS are accelerating — from 3,000 a month now to 4,000.
    what’s the explanation? If the number of debts is rising, how can the death RATE be falling?

    1. Carla

      “If the number of debts is rising, how can the death RATE be falling?”

      Great Freudian slip, Professor Hudson! As a fan of yours, I really appreciate how appropriate it is.

  11. ambrit

    Being an Amateuer Chart Watcher, Farm Team Division, I wonder if our American Death Rate visual aid is forming the dreaded “Head and Shoulders” pattern? It did in the November ’20 to February ’21 period. “Things” did indeed fall apart somewhat after that first mangled example. This second example will be almost perfect in it’s expression if the present drop continues. Time to “go long” funeral pyres?

  12. Wukchumni

    This story reeks of…Fresno

    A few months ago, Christina Lopez ended a four-year battle with the city of Fresno, Calif., over the death of her teenage son. The unarmed 16-year-old was fatally shot by a police officer in 2017, and his mother and the city had finally reached a $4.9 million settlement.

    In the months that followed, Lopez, 42, used the money to buy a five-bedroom home on five acres of land in a western suburb of the Central Valley city, public records show.

    She also spent thousands on guns, law enforcement said, and gave them to her 14-year-old son, who was selling them to fellow gang members.

    Now, Lopez faces 22 charges, including child endangerment and conspiracy to provide firearms to a minor for the benefit of a street gang. She could serve up to 10 years in state prison, according to Fresno County District Attorney Lisa A. Smittcamp. Her son was also charged.


  13. CloverBee

    Listening to the whole interview (Spotify) was great Joe Rogan – Sanjay Gupta. JR brought up all of our questions, SG answered in long form, and was specific about how much we don’t know. This is the best discussion I have heard from a major media personality (Sanjay Gupta). Polite, in depth, in language most people understand. More like this would be so much better for our national conversation than the current coverage.

    1. Ghost in the Machine

      I thought it was good too. For the most part Rogan had the upper hand. Rogan really hammered on the lack of knowledge about long term effects of vaccines, which is true, but Gupta failed to point out we also are in the dark about the long term effects of Covid. Historically, nasty future surprises from disease are more common than from vaccines it seems to me.
      Here is an article on post polio syndrome including people who seemed to get through the initial infection ok.


      1. Dave

        I know more healthy people who’ve been sickened or died from the vaccine than from COVID. Who should I believe, the deep-state oligarch media or my own eyes?

        1. Soredemos

          Going to interject here that I learned last night that my brother in law died just a couple days ago from it. Unvaxxed, got it from my sister who was also unvaxxed and brought it home with her, and she in turn probably got it from a fully vaxxed person.

          So, on balance, just freaking get it. It won’t do anything for spread, but it may save you a date with a ventilator like my brother in law had. It also might screw up your periods or give you myocarditis, but you’re weighing that against a very real possibility of dying a very ugly death.

        2. Larry Y

          Do I believe random internet posters with anecdotal data or the various critical care pulmonologists and ICU specialists I know…

          Since we’re comparing anecdotal data, I don’t know anyone who has long term or short term effects from the vaccine. But I know too many parents and grand parents who have died (before the vaccine!), and people with long COVID.

  14. Judith

    Thanks for the grizzly bears, Lambert. I needed some joy after a remarkably sressful week at work.

    1. Wukchumni

      Walker with Ed Harris from 1987 is a time warp that takes its sweet time going from 1850’s Nicaragua to the 1980’s in under 2 hours flat.

      Harris plays William Walker, a soldier of fortune in the employ of Cornelius Vanderbilt…

      2 exuberant thumbs up!

    2. LawnDart

      Both Walker and Babette’s Feast sound like excellent suggestions.

      “An artist is never poor.”

      I look forward to follow the story to this conclusion.

      Thank you!

    3. witters

      I’m way too late, but Charlie Chaplin’s Limelight is wonderful (him and Buster Keaton are magic together!). Premiered in London, as Charlie was then US person non grata.

  15. Wukchumni

    The case for minting a $1tn coin to deal with America’s debt ceiling, by Nathan Tankus

    The coin may seem “silly”, or be considered a “gimmick”. But really it uses the federal government’s most basic constitutional power – to coin money – for one of the most basic purposes of public finance: paying our obligations. Feeling foolish is no excuse not to act.


    1. Objective Ace

      What is the point of paying more to rentier middlemen? Offer 6 dollars more no matter where the driver comes from. If the rentier is more productive than the government agency and is able reach different markets they can keep a portion of that 6 dollars. Otherwise they are offering zero benefit and should not recieve any compensation

  16. The Rev Kev

    “Maker of plane parts Boeing calls flawed supplied Spirit, others: Report”

    Inspection should have picked up any problems before going into assembly but what if……OK. So the 737 MAX fiasco revealed that the FAA had outsourced most of its inspection regime to Boeing itself who would punish their own people if they called out faults. So what if Boeing itself outsourced inspection of parts to the manufacturer of parts themselves? And that is why they never picked up on them? Turtles all the way down.

  17. LawnDart

    Both Walker and Babette’s Feast sound like excellent suggestions.

    “An artist is never poor.”

    I look forward to follow the story to this conclusion.

    Thank you!

  18. The Rev Kev

    “Ex-Boeing test pilot indicted for fraud in 737 Max probe”

    Thank goodness they got rid of that bad apple. Now maybe Boeing can go back to work again.

  19. Joe Well

    Re: hotels, COVID, and air quality

    The best option is old-fashioned motels with the door directly to the outside.

    I recommend Red Roof Inn Plus: The Miller High Life of motels.

  20. Acacia

    Tangential, and not sure if it’s been mentioned here, but Apple is expected to announce new MacBook Pros this coming Monday, and many are expecting a return of the MagSafe connector. So maybe all is not going pear-shaped at the fruity firm?

    Longer-term, I personally am eyeing Linux on the very nice Framework laptop (tho technically a notebook computer). It looks a lot like a MacBook Pro — only 1 mm thicker than the current model —, except less expensive, user-serviceable, and more customizable. Even the mobo can be upgraded. Very nice concept of letting us choose the ports that we actually want and snapping them into the chassis.

    Alas, the sticking point I see is apps, not the OS or hardware.

    1. Katiebird

      But isn’t that (sticking point: apps) a huge deal? Aren’t we buying computers as tools for certain jobs? What is the benefit of a computer that doesn’t run apps that do the job you need it for?

      I have this same dilemma — I need a new computer and go around and around about which one to buy.

      1. Acacia

        I hear ‘ya. These are tools for work, and so apps are indeed a huge deal. I feel the only way I could fully transition to Linux would be to first draw up a list of tasks or work flows, and the apps that are doing the job now. Then, check that all of these are possible with other apps. Not motivated about doing this.

        On the plus side, I’d like to think that there may be other, nice apps out there that run on Linux and could do the same job or better, but it’s almost a project in itself to figure out if this is possible, or not. Ideally, one could move to open source apps with active dev communities, but that’s an ideal. Another possibility is to connect with the developer’s/user’s forum for apps that come close, and put in feature requests. I haven’t had much luck with that, though.

        I will say that some open source apps have active communities and fantastic support — light years better than any “support” I’ve ever gotten for Apple software.

        Going forward, the main issue with Apple is that they’ve bailed on Intel and so anybody who sticks with macOS is going to have to eventually transition all of their apps to new versions that run native Apple M1 code. Apple provides Rosetta 2 to continue running Intel apps on M1 hardware, but they did this before with Rosetta 1 (to manage the transition from Motorola to Intel) and it was only supported from 2006 to 2011. Maybe they’ll provide more than 5 years of support for Rosetta 2, but given their overall track record, I wouldn’t bank on it.

        I’m not really keen to replace all of my apps in the next five years, just to stay on macOS.

        1. Terry Flynn

          Yep. When I was in academia I tried Linux on two separate occasions but had to give up, largely due to lack of support for apps/programs. So always had to revert to Windows to cope with my specialised statistical and other software.

          Now I’m free of that madhouse I have been able to transition again and 3rd time really is the charm. An old netbook has new lease of life running Linux Lite for instance. Unfortunately I still need dual boot on my main PC to cope with the transition and the occasional legacy issue.

          However I would like to be fully comfortable with a couple of flavours of Linux before I am ever forced to “upgrade” to W11

  21. Jason Boxman

    So liberal Democrats fold on climate. Why did anyone vote for these people again? Key to Biden’s Climate Agenda Likely to Be Cut Because of Manchin Opposition. If Democrats won’t deliver on the existential crisis of our age, they’re completely worthless to humanity as a political party.

    WASHINGTON — The most powerful part of President Biden’s climate agenda — a program to rapidly replace the nation’s coal- and gas-fired power plants with wind, solar and nuclear energy — will likely be dropped from the massive budget bill pending in Congress, according to congressional staffers and lobbyists familiar with the matter.

    I guess we’re done here, then. But vote team blue in 2022 so you can burn red! Because Trump Republicans might win back Congress, or something, maybe Russia again… woman’s rights…? Who are they kidding, anymore.

    1. Acacia

      > If Democrats won’t deliver on the existential crisis of our age

      Totally predictable, though, wasn’t it?

    2. drumlin woodchuckles

      If the Repuglans nominate a hideous gargoyle, the Decromats will win again. If the Repuglans nominate a less-than-hideous less-than-gargoyle, then the Decromats could lose due to massive Decromat-voter defections.

      Perhaps we the disaffected should see who-all is running in the Repuglan primaries and if any non-hideous non-gargoyles are running, vote for them in the Repuglan primaries. That way, if the Repuglans give us a ticket we could tolerate, we would feel free to defect from the Decromats, either by voting for a third, fourth or fifth party, or by leaving the Presidential line ( and maybe some other lines too) blank.

      As to 2022, I hope the disaffected focus on a purge-and-burn of the Sinemanchocrats from offices and from tickets.

  22. VietnamVet

    Pete Buttigieg at home, postpartum, doing nothing about the clogged ports and Kamala Harris with child actors in the NASA space clip just about sums up a dysfunction US government that can’t do anything right. But this is exactly what their donors want.

    The global top 10% sure don’t grasp the dangers from scapegoating the unvaxxed and mandating that workers be vaccinated. Essential workers are walking away. When no matter how hard you work, there isn’t enough money to buy a new automobile or truck (the assembly plants are shut down) is this wage deflation (The Great Depression Two) or dollar hyperinflation (Weimar America)? Or Both?

  23. drumlin woodchuckles

    Here is a citizen-video of citizen recounting to Officer Friendly what Officer Friendly did to citizen some time before to help refresh Officer Friendly’s memory. And at the very end of the video, citizen expresses the hope that this video will go as viral as citizen hopes to make it go . . . . Officer Friendly.

    Here is the link.

    Perhaps people here can help the cause of making this video go viral by watching it and if deemed worthy, sending it and/or linking it even further around.

    If the objection is raised that ” citizen is merely alleging all this ” , then let any investigative journalist do the homework involved in finding the facts, and reporting them.

  24. Vickie

    Re low road Kevin Carhart
    I skimmed through and/or read this article. Thank you. Now I know why so many 18 wheelers are involved in highway wrecks! Americans be damned, business interests must prevail. I don’t know how much longer we can survive under the rule of no law except business law and its race to the bottom. I wish more governors would start taking charge of correcting wrong-doing in their states in the absence of federal protection for the citizens. And to think that bribery has reached even the level of truckers trying to pick up a load!

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