Links 1/30/2022

How the Great Zen Master and Peace Activist Thich Nhat Hanh Found Himself and Lost His Self in a Library Epiphany Marginalia

Fed could use half-point rate rises if needed, says official FT. It’s hard to see how tinkering with interest rates could affect this:


Expected global suitability of coffee, cashew and avocado due to climate change PLOS One. Rice? Wheat?

Amazon forests capture high levels of atmospheric mercury pollution from artisanal gold mining Nature


Covid Is Over Eschaton

So done with blizzards (1):

So done with blizzards (2):

* * *

Does the ‘Let it Rip’ approach have a eugenics problem? Eureka Street. Throwing a flag on the Betteridge’s Law violation.

* * *

Boosters and Mixed Schedules: Covid Vaccines at the 2-Year Mark (Part 1) Hilda Bastian, PLOS One

Long COVID symptoms and duration in SARS-CoV-2 positive children — a nationwide cohort study European Journal of Pediatrics. From the Abtract: “Long COVID in children is rare and mainly of short duration.” Commentary:

Promising COVID-19 antiviral pill, Paxlovid, in scarce supply, as doctors, patients compete for access ABC

* * *

The Coronavirus Will Surprise Us Again The Atlantic

One more damn book to read:

(Review). Good call…


The Omicron Olympics: Behind the Scenes of a Covid ‘S–tshow’ China Doesn’t Want You to See Rolling Stone. Representative paragraph:

As touchdown began in earnest this week, athletes were getting tested en masse at Beijing International. (It’s the PCR throat swab this time.) To avoid needless interaction, they’re carrying their own suitcases. (Yes, even Shaun White.) They’ve been shown to their seats on socially-distanced buses run by the Chinese organizing committee. (Bus and taxi drivers are trapped inside the bubble, too.) And then they’re off through the “processing center” to wait up to six hours for test results inside the closed loop — a pandemic purgatory of isolation, action sports, and a nebulous nether region reserved for quarantine.

Summarizing, China tests international travellers, who may have to wait six hours for test results. Oh, the humanity! Oh, the entitlement!

Oaktree takes control of sprawling Evergrande building project near Shanghai FT

Caterpillar Says China Demand to Drop on a Construction Slowdown Bloomberg

Don’t underestimate the “elegance” of ordinary people-China Industry Review-China Industry Network What China Reads

How Long Can Biden Muddle Through on China? War on the Rocks


‘ICJ must ensure involvement in Rohingya case does not legitimize Myanmar junta’ Anadolu Agency

Hun Sen Urges Myanmar to End Violence Cambodiness

Major Australian Energy Firm Woodside Announces Myanmar Pullout Agence France Presse

Myanmar’s Arakan rebels cement control over Rakhine state while the junta’s distracted South China Morning Post. Rakhine State, on the Andaman Sea, interestingly at least to arms smugglers.

Japan’s immigration experiment under cover of Covid FT. The deck: “The country has introduced restrictions on foreigners that risk blunting its soft power.” From the body: “Japan’s self-isolation and other measures to protect its citizenry sit only at the fiercer end of a spectrum of national strategies. Its comparatively low Covid mortality rates in a country with almost 30 per cent of the population over 65, are a solid rhetorical shield.” Low Covid mortality rates are “a solid rhetorical shield”? They really do want to kill us all, don’t they?

New Cold War

Tensions growing between Washington and Kyiv as Ukraine-Russia crisis drags on CNN. The lead: “As the US has been warning the world of a potentially ‘imminent’ Russian invasion of Ukraine, one foreign leader in particular has not been convinced: Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.” From All The President’s Men: “The truth is, these are not very bright guys, and things got out of hand.” And I’m not talking about President Zelensky. However, as the run-up to World War I shows, warmongering mediocrities in positions of influence can do a lot of damage.

US targets Russian disinformation in bid to defend Ukraine The Hill (CI). This is all too, too meta. Note the quote from the Brookings Institution, employer of Igor Danchenko, source — one would have thought embarassingly — of the Steele Dossuier and arrestd by the Durham investigation.

Tangled Tale of NATO Expansion at the Heart of Ukraine Crisis Consortium News

Top Weapons Companies Boast Ukraine-Russia Tensions Are a Boon for Business In These Times

Police State Watch

Fallen NYPD cop Jason Rivera given hero’s farewell at St. Patrick’s Cathedral NY Post. Seems familar somehow;

Meanwhile, the Times media team butchers MoDo’s hagiography:

“Start spreading the news….”

What the Killing of Two N.Y.P.D. Officers Means for New York The New Yorker. Maybe this?

3 investigations will probe fatal shooting of pedestrian by 9 police officers in Nashville CNN

Small town police in Alabama are patrolling Facebook and threatening to arrest people who post negative comments about them Daily Mail

Biden Administration

60 Million U.S. Households Have Ordered Free Covid Tests, White House Says NECN

The IRS Wants Your Face The American Conservative. Madness.

Most Virginia school districts disobeying Youngkin on order making masks optional: report The Hill

Trucker convoy has evolved into something far more dangerous Globe and Mail

Supply Chain

Los Angeles imports slump further as congestion throttles volume American Shipper

Schedule Reliability Dropped to Record Low at the End of 2021 Maritime Executive

The Bezzle

An Anatomy of Bitcoin Price Manipulation Single Lunch

NFTs Are, Quite Simply, Bullshit Jacobin

‘Huge mess of theft and fraud:’ artists sound alarm as NFT crime proliferates Guardian

Not just for artwork, NFTs are being used by political candidates to raise money, attract young supporters ABC

Intelligence Community

The CIA lost track of who runs the UK, so I picked up the slack Open Sanctions

Imperial Collapse Watch

10 injured in bridge collapse in Pittsburgh’s Frick Park Trib Live. Unsurprisingly:

America Has an Unhealthy Obsession With Credibility Foreign Policy

Guillotine Watch

A 19-year-old built a flight-tracking Twitter bot. Elon Musk tried to pay him to stop. Protocol. Musk offered $5,000. Really?

I Figured Out Wordle’s Secret The Atlantic

Hello Kitty prepares to charm metaverse FT

A Strange Medieval Manuscript Taught Me How Couples Flirted and Courted a Thousand Years Ago The Honest Broker

Antidote du jour (via):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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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. Samuel Conner

          That sounds like flawed experiment design. One should launch the test material from the ‘inflow’ side.

    1. Lemmy Caution

      Too bad for a nation finally ready to joke about Covid.

      The old “Rectum? Damn near killed him!” bit would have had a whole new audience.

  1. Samuel Conner

    Havahart is out of stock on a signature product, the basic 2-door humane capture mousetrap.

    I suppose someone needs to build a better supply chain.

    1. ambrit

      Either that or the status of the empty food shelves at the grocery stores is a lot worse than we suspect.
      As is often said: “Build a better supply chain and the world will beat a trade route to your port.”
      This ties in with the truckers caravan in Canada. How dare those servants chose to protest when they should be waiting in line at the ports to pick up backordered dodads! (And show their economic solidarity by doing so gratis!)
      Appropriate musick, “The World Turned Upside Down”:
      This lot show us all how proper servants should act in the presence of their betters.
      (I realy don’t know whether I am being sarcastic or not. “The World Turned Upside Down” is the song played as the musicians enter the quadrangle.)
      Of interest is that this was how most people originally experienced music before recording technology exploded around 1900 AD.

      1. VietnamVet

        The fife and drums were a means of signaling and controlling line and square formations to get the maximum number of muskets lined up and pointed in the right direction and fired at once for maximum effect. I never was told this while in the University Marching Band. How little we learn.

        What I got from basic training was WWII fix and encircle. In Vietnam, it was fix and call in artillery or air support. Since the military gave up on draftees and went with volunteers, they don’t have the manpower for any of the Empire’s wars. Today proxy forces, e.g. Jihadists and Neo-Nazis are used. Air controllers are embedded within ethnic forces and call in the strikes. This is how the Kurds destroyed Raqqa Syria.

        The sad fact is that NATO doesn’t have snowballs chance in hell of defeating the Russian Army in Ukraine. The West will never gain air superiority right on Russia’s border. The war will go nuclear first.

    2. PHLDenizen

      I haven’t paid attention to pet food, but with high enough inflation, isn’t it cheaper to adopt a sweet kitty to dispose of them? Plus cats are good company.

      And cats are also 2 door: in the mouth and out the other end.

      1. Glen

        Pet supply prices have gone up for our cats. We got some of the goes in stuff, some of the comes out into this, and a treat – three items and were just under a C buck. But it’s a local mom-n-pop right next to some other local businesses, and we stop in every weekend and do what we can.

        1. Wukchumni

          No shortage of Fancy Feast, but my pet store told me that canned Friskies cat food might be even more of a limited edition than Bitcoin.

      2. Miguel

        Bidenflation is leaving people dumbfounded in the market.
        They just stand there, staring at the price as though it were a two headed cat or something. I point at the dollar amount and love to say
        “I hope you didn’t vote for that!”

        1. drumlin woodchuckles

          Well . . . I didn’t vote for “that”. But I voted for Biden in order to not get anymore Trump.

          And “that” is part of the price I will have to endure to have no more Trump until 2024 anyway.

          And then we’ll see what happens.

        2. Yves Smith

          Oh, so Biden controls global energy prices? Is responsible for the changed weather patterns that have led to shortfalls of key crops? Is behind the car shortage….another global phenomenon?

          Those are the drivers of this inflation. You assume Biden omnipotence, a fact not in evidence.

          There’s a lot to not like Biden about, and his mismanagement of Covid has made matters worse. But he’s not responsible for any of the main drivers.

  2. The Rev Kev

    “A Strange Medieval Manuscript Taught Me How Couples Flirted and Courted a Thousand Years Ago”

    Yeah, I’m not so convinced that this was really widespread across society and was not more for the upper echelons of society. When you dig into history, you find all sorts of customs that sound strange to us but must have made practical sense at the time. Here is one custom that appears to have been widespread at the time but which has inexplicably gone out of fashion-

    Still, when I reflect on this article there are echoes of his ideas in more recent time of courting customs. I have read about young men in two places – one in East Germany and the other England – decades ago where they were forced to wear outlandish outfits, boots, hairstyles, etc. as no regular girl would even look at them unless they conformed to this idea of what they should look like. I mean seriously, what guy would wake up one morning and decide what he really needs to do is grow his hair into the style of a duck’s a***?

    1. John

      There is no price high enough to persuade me to sell my wife of +40 years.

      She on the other hand, with regards to me . . .

    2. Roger Blakely

      “But the most surprising aspect of these medieval communications comes from the confidence with which the women demand a courtly demeanor from their teacher—who is expected to live up to a high standard of chivalry.”

      This comes from the eleventh century, perhaps a generation after the Norman invasion of England in 1066. It give some insight into women’s claims to have been oppressed for millennia. Yeah, right, sweetheart. Whatevers.

      1. Soredemos

        You do understand what ‘oppression’ means, right? It doesn’t mean “everyone is mean to me”, it means “I have little freedom to choose my course in life”. What that manuscript is describing is a form of benevolent sexism, where women are elevated onto a pedestal that is then made into their cage.



  3. griffen

    The IRS wants to use facial recognition tech to provide access for your returns. Sheesh. Nothing will go wrong there.

    I should just tattoo my assigned number on my forehead when I do that.

    1. The Rev Kev

      Numbers are so 20th century. It would have to be nothing less than a barcode image and you would have to bend down and run your forehead over a barcode reader a coupla times to be identified.

      1. Keith Newman

        Already done in the movie “In Time” with Amanda Seyfried and Justin Timberlake! The bar code is on the wrist as is the time you have left to live. As a science fiction fan I quite enjoyed the movie.

        1. ambrit

          Also, in “The Expanse,” belters are identified by scanning what looks to be an embedded microchip.
          On a more sombre note; I knew a woman who survived Auschwitz concentration camp. (She was the wife of one of Dad’s friends.) She had the personal identification number still tattooed on her arm.
          SS also had such numbers tattooed on their wrists.
          Permenant “branding” of people has a long and storied history.

          1. Keith Newman

            Ambrit: excellent point.
            In fact I find the IRS thing very scary. Sometimes I find it hard to believe some of this is actually happening.

            1. ambrit

              I’m with you on the ‘scary’ part.
              One “rule” about warfare is that every new and improved military technology is eventually used, no exceptions. This being the military, ‘used’ equalls ‘abused.’
              I can see this ‘rule’ applied to any and all technology.
              “Every advance in technology will eventually be abused.”
              Now, for some enterprising persons to begin applying pattern recognition avoidance designs to Covid masks.

              1. Questa Nota

                You can work off your tax bill by using their home treadmill. Remember to keep looking at the camera so you get credit for all those walked watt hours. Otherwise, your electricity might malfunction at an inconvenient time.

                On a ventilator?
                Need to refrigerate that insulin?

                Now that we have your undivided attention, nod your acquiescence and keep treading. / half-s

              2. Bruno

                “One “rule” about warfare is that every new and improved military technology is eventually used, no exceptions. This being the military, ‘used’ equalls ‘abused.’
                I can see this ‘rule’ applied to any and all technology.
                “Every advance in technology will eventually be abused.”

                Every advance in technology will be militarized even if it isn’t military *ab initio*

            2. griffen

              We’re progressing into skynet and evil time traveling Terminators, okay I am stretching a bit on the Terminator. But, I like boiling these moments of thought and clarity down to simple thoughts or reactions, like going to a movie.

              We’ll laugh, we’ll cry, and someone will shoot their eye out.

              1. Hepativore

                So wait, will you still be able to manually print off the forms from the website and do it by mail? I never file online because it is easier to claim exemptions and keep track of reimbursements with physical forms, and online tax filing through “free” tax programs like Turbo Tax are not free if you need other forms besides the standard 1040.

                …and yes, the IRS still owes me $600 from last year and it is impossible to get through to a representative on their helplines due to the sheer volume of calls.

                  1. drumlin woodchuckles

                    That is a Congressional decision, not an IRS decision. The IRS cannot spend the money it does not have on hiring. And the IRS will not have what Congress will not give.

                1. cwalsh

                  I’ve downloaded 2021 forms from the IRS which can be mailed in. I filed last year through IRS freefile using the online forms. A new IRS account must be created each year to use the freefile online forms, allegedly this can be done without until later this year.

                  1. Hepativore

                    Then I will continue to file by mail…although I would not be surprised if the IRS no longer allows this when ID.Me gets rolled out.

                    Why the f*ck does everything in the US have to be turned into a privatization scheme? Nobody asked for this and the way that it is being set up sounds like they are using the hardships brought about by the pandemic as an excuse for more corporate boondoggles. How long is it going to be before the TSA also requires facial-scanning as a requirement for boarding flights?

                    Sorry for the outburst, but these public-private partnerships have never worked yet they keep getting shoved into everything over the decades despite their obvious failure.

                    1. drumlin woodchuckles

                      They work to enrich the private partner, which is the only thing they were ever intended to do.

                      If a combination of forced TSA facial regcognition and forced 5G exterminates the airline bussiness from existence within the US, will its post-liquidation personnel get to sue the responsible Federal Agencies for exterminating their industry?

      2. Tom Bradford

        Tattooing? How archaic. Our dogs are already microchipped. One quick injection and every door you pass through will register it.

    2. GramSci

      Despite years of reading NC, I found myself thinking, “So the IRS wants my face. So what?”

      As a public service to new readers, I highlight the money quote:

      “You can change your Social Security number, you can even change your name, but you can’t change your face. When your biometric data is compromised, you are exposed for the rest of your life.”

      1. Objective Ace

        Unless your older than like 30 or 40, your biometric data (finger and toe prints) is collected at birth. I’m not entirely sure how that fits into your comment.. I guess just that its important what our biometric data is used for given we’ve already given it up. Trusting the chronically underfunded IRS to use it responsibly–no thanks!

    3. Maritimer

      In my humble jurisdiction, they take photos when you get your license or renew it. Not hard to believe that these are all stored and accessed for massaging by Gov Security forces, National Security, you know. And, I would suspect, for practice, folks at protests and engaged in other undesirable activities are used as testing fodder for the facial recognition Bots. Or just folks walking along the street or in airports. Hey, Bot, how did you do today?

      This is only one of many tools in the Oppression Toolbox, as they like to say. Ultimately, the object is to tie in all databases with personal, income, medical, credit card, cellphone, anti-social media etc. data, The data is all there just tie it in.

      See Fitts, Kennedy, Breggin, Webb and many others for more info.

  4. bwilli123

    from the Eureka Street (Australia) article on Covid Eugenics (Lightly edited for clarity)
    “The decision seems to have been made by Federal and State governments (Western Australia honourably excepted) that vaccines will be the principal line of defence against the virus. That, in itself, would be an inherently eugenicist approach (given that not only are vaccines not available for all of the population) but also that there are very few alternatives available for those at risk. Testing and even boosters are hard to come by and even the pretence that First Nations, elderly and disabled people enjoyed ‘priority’ (which was maintained for the original vaccines) has now been dropped when it comes to the required boosters. The failures to vaccinate people in group homes and sheltered workshops — and the accompanying toll in infections — gave real, if under-reported, testimony as to how little disabled lives were valued….”

    1. The Rev Kev

      That social media user Peter Russell mentioned in that article had it right when he said: ‘…waiting for the government to report details of a plane crash where 80 died, 50 of who had underlying health conditions, 26 had no insurance & 2 had pilot licences.’

      1. Pelham

        Thanks for highlighting this. I’ve seen this sort of thing over and over again, even in alternative news sources I’ve come to respect, the hand-wave dismissal of everyone not in absolutely perfect health.

    2. KD

      It is not clear why anyone should accept this bastardization of the use of “eugenics”. Eugenics is about reducing the incidence of disease-causing genes in future populations, for example, making sure a couple do not have recessive genes for genetic disorders or screening embryos for genetic diseases and aborting them. Secondarily, when infertile couples or same sex couples go shopping for Harvard sperm and eggs without a history of mental illness or criminal records, that is eugenics. Nothing eugenic about letting your population die of a disease, or about killing off people who don’t have access to the Big Pharma magic bullet.

      The proper word here is probably Malthusian response. Maybe that isn’t as naughty-sounding as eugenics (because all good-thinking people are against eugenics, e.g., want to ensure that children are born with horrible diseases that would otherwise be preventable but for purity taboos). If you are actually against eugenics, then be Pro-Life and fight IVF and other fertility techniques and genetic screening.

      1. Yves Smith

        No, it isn’t necessarily. Since when is killing all the Jews or favoring tall blonds about reducing disease?

        Some flavors of eugenics profess to be about health, but they also profess to be about optimizing for other qualities like IQ. Those super brilliant mathy men have a much higher propensity for schizophrenia than the population as a whole, witness John Nash. People who have a better grasp on reality are mildly depressed. Etc.

        1. JTMcPhee

          I’d say people with a better grip on reality, these days, are likely to be way more than mildly depressed…

          1. PHLDenizen

            The difference between optimists and pessimists is that the latter are simply more well informed.

            1. Mildred Montana

              Optimists believe we live in the best of all possible worlds. Pessimists fear this is true.

          1. Mildred Montana

            “They were called mad who did not suffer from the general madness.”
            —–Madame Roland

              1. Wukchumni

                The Days of the French Revolution, by Christopher Hibbert is an easy to read chronicle of goings on and players…

              2. Mildred Montana

                Hi Pate.

                Of course, since I quoted from them, Roland’s “Memoirs” are very good. She, a Girondin (one of the factions in the National Assembly), was imprisoned for many months before being guillotined in 1793.

                For beginners I always recommend a primer, an overview, a coffee-table type book with short descriptive passages and lots of sketches and drawings. The one I read (which unfortunately I do not remember the name of) really stimulated my interest and I went on from there to, among others:

                1. J.M. Thompson, ??? ?????? ?????????? and ??????? ?? ??? ?????? ?????????? (a nice concise introduction to the major players).
                2. Thomas Carlyle, ??? ?????? ??????????: ? ???????. Difficult without prior acquaintance with the dramatis personae but beautiful prose.

                Many books have been written about the French Revolution, so take your pick. Sadly, they are getting harder and harder to obtain as libraries delete titles to make way for audiobooks and CD’s.

                A well-stocked library will have most anything you want, check out its 944 section. Otherwise, second-hand book stores. Happy reading!

        2. Rolexgoyster

          That’s why brilliant Jewish nebushes, often the product of shtetl inbreeding, marry tall blonde shiksas, to improve their bloodline.

          1. Yves Smith

            Brilliant nebishes are not necessarily successful in commercial terms. The body type preferences of rich men is pretty much the same independent of their ethnicity (there are some exceptions, like famously, Sid Bass dumping his tall, pretty, refined blond wife Anne for the short, lively, funny and less pretty Mercedes Kellogg. Pamela Harriman was also only a bit better than ordinary looking but was fabulous at pleasing men and attending to their every need).

            The current fashionable female body type is hardly very healthy. Rich men go for tall women with narrow hips and fake boobs. Boyish bodies. Hips that narrow are not pro-reproduction and many get C-sections for that and to preserve tight vaginas. And the current modelish ideal is a size zero or two. That means not muscular and not very able to get muscular. The best predictor of biological age, as opposed to physical age, is strength. Second is muscle mass.

            So the type that is advantaged now would do poorly if they actually had to work. That’s part of the point, their body shape advertises they have to have things done for them.

        3. KD

          People equate Nazism, and Nazi ideology, with eugenics, which is partially true, the Nazi’s adopted eugenics laws (based on American laws) but that doesn’t mean everything the Nazi’s did was eugenics, anymore than everything American progressives did was eugenics (worker’s comp).

          The Nazi’s had the infamous T4 program where they killed what they viewed as mentally defective (going a step further than America, where there were involuntary sterilization campaigns until the 1970s), but this was not based on ethnicity, it was supposedly to eliminate these genes from the population. The Holocaust had little to do with eugenics (the Turks didn’t need eugenics to do in the Armenians, which was undoubtedly Hitler’s inspiration for the Holocaust), its just good old fashioned race war politics.

          However, I stand by my original statement: letting people deliberately die is not eugenics, it is just ruthless and callused, the elites are treating people like farm animals, but its not a breeding program. They are just want you to die, good old fashioned Malthusians, its not because you have bad genes, nor is there much racial animus-they had these racial triages for whites in NY to try an avoid racial disproportionality in an engineered population drop.

          1. Yves Smith

            I don’t disagree with that, I disagree with the notion that elite breeding preferences amount to eugenics. Like Chinese foot-binding (see independent reaching the same conclusion based on the fact set!), some of them are not pro species fitness.

            However, GM has argued that the Covid polices are (whether consciously or not) advantage the top social tier at the expense of everyone else. They get to stay home and have stuff brought to them. They can afford the best treatments (and get access to ones supposedly disfavored…IM Doc reports the squillionaires in his county are typically avid consumers of ivermectin). So even if they suffer a lifespan cost, other cohorts will suffer more, increasing their relative advantage.

      2. The Historian

        Are you saying that people with genetic or other illnesses can’t contribute to society?

        So, should Temple Grandin have been euthanized?
        How about Stephen Hawking?
        What about Helen Keller?
        What about Stevie Wonder?
        And I could go on and on.

        Who are we to say who can or cannot contribute to society based on something as shallow as whether they have or have not got what is considered a ‘horrible disease’?

        1. KD

          Your comment is insane. I said the concept of X is being used inappropriately, and in fact there are lots of things that we do as a society that in fact do fall under the category of X, mostly in connection with genetic screening and fertility treatments. I am not taking a position on IVF, abortion, genetic screening, etc. Further, designer babies are probably coming soon, so that is a real ethical question. No, the issue is just letting your people die off without making sure they have access to treatment is not eugenics, it is just Malthusian indifference.

          But I do think it is probably a good idea if you belong to a small community with Founders effects that you intend to marry into, you and your partner get genetic testing prior to anything getting serious to avoid producing off spring with Tay-Sachs or the like. I don’t know if that offends your moral high ground.

          1. The Historian

            Perhaps my comment is over the top. But every definition of eugenics I can find says that eugenics is the purposeful selection for ‘desirable characteristics’. What are ‘desirable characteristics’? Do any of us actually know? My list was of people with what definitely could be considered less than ‘desirable characteristics’, yet they’ve contributed more to our society than many with ‘desirable characteristics’.

            Sure, it is important to get genetic screening if you know that you carry a harmful gene that will limit the life of your unborn. But eugenics is more than that – it is also the attempt to select for ‘super’ genes and I agree with you, that is a real ethical question.

            I also agree with you that just letting people die off for lack of treatment is Malthusian indifference, but I completely disagree with your statement: “(because all good-thinking people are against eugenics, e.g., want to ensure that children are born with horrible diseases that would otherwise be preventable but for purity taboos).” I rather think I am against eugenics because how it can be used to select for ‘super genes’ as though we really know what those ‘super genes’ are.

            1. KD

              Let me be clear. There is, I believe, good uses of eugenics. There is also horrible uses of eugenics, such as the Nazi T4 program. There is a lot of moral grey area, much of which will have to be filled out due to innovations in genetic screening, fetal viability limits, IVF techniques, etc.

              I guess what I meant to say was hey, this is not eugenics. Also, hey, there is something called eugenics, and all the applications of eugenics are not uniquely evil like the T4 program, some are actually pretty good. However, do not take that statement as my support for mandatory sterilizations or T4 or many of the other abuses of eugenics which have been cataloged.

              In an irrelevant note, we need to remember who was the head of the British Eugenics Society, and how that relates to his thoughts on economics.

      3. Harold

        Proper word is sometimes “ethnic cleansing”.

        When used about birth control, “eugenics” used to be about letting families, particularly the mother space their babies so she and they could have proper care and nutrition. (This has become widely accepted).

        When it is recommended that older people who have had children and are too old to reproduce be eliminated, that is not eugenics, because they will have already passed on their genes to the population at large. This would be the Nazi practice of “ridding the body politic of “useless feeders ” (file under economic austerity).

        Also, if the goal is to reproduce intelligent or good looking children one should probably be looking to the genes parents of the nobel prize winner or beauty queens, not the prizewinners themselves, because of regression to the mean.

        In short, today the term eugenics is used rather loosely.

        1. Foy

          Reversion to the mean…

          Marilyn Monroe told Einstein – “Would it not be wonderful if we had a child with your brains and my beauty?” Einstein replied promptly: “Yes, but imagine a child with my beauty and your brains!”

    3. BeliTsari

      The decision was made that “vax-only” Let ‘er RIP, “we don’ NEEDS no steenkin masks!” tropes would best perpetuate FIRE & PhARMA Sector precariate feeding frenzy; Black, Latinx… largely refugee poor workers followed old and immunocompromised victims; so infecting school-children (who’d vector Delta asymptomaticly to teachers, caregivers was easy to hide) until Omicron made it necessary for media to hide our government dooming millions to PASC, MIS-C, lifelong debilitating circulatory and autoimmune organ damage; sneering intentionally blatant falsehoods, since only the petit bourgeois buy into their preferred narrative of cynical lies? It’s made an awful lot of smug, WFH Creative Class investors millionaires over the past couple years. And with NASDAQ now crashing, we’ll have more important things on our minds, than what’s about to happen in ’22 let alone ’24?

        1. drumlin woodchuckles

          Or, if we are to retain Latinx, then for the sake of consistency, we also have to say . . .
          Cubanx, Chicanx, Mejicanx, etc.

          1. ambrit

            Don’t forget Gringx. (Pronounced: Grin-gish.) [X is a problematic letter in Spanish.]
            I was taught to not use ‘x’ in spanish but use ‘j’ or hota instead. The pronunciation of ‘x’ as ‘sh’ is stolen from Chinese I believe, but that’s just the gweilo in me coming out.

            1. BeliTsari

              “RedneX,” is my preferred usage? We’d dun runned-owta “Babylon Berlin” & “Gomorrah” reruns, to stream during NYC’s bomb cyclone, and so reverted to Elmore Leonard’s exquisite “Fire In The Hole” pilot to “Justified,” shot in Pittsburgh, since Harlan, Co. wasn’t nearly scary redneck enough? Figure, readers would take offense at “HonkeX?”

  5. griffen

    Policing stories from New York City and the above linked tweet about overall spending. I’m inclined to believe that if one incorporates all spending on the prison system and varying stages of incarceration, the US system would indeed be top of the heap.

    Made me think about a 1990 album from Queensryche (shout out, Seattle music lovers); the title track and album as well, both were called “Empire”. An excellent piece of work from the band. The lead singer had serious pipes.

      1. griffen

        I’m giving both a listen today or tomorrow if the old CD player still cooperates with me. I had Empire on cassette and probably should have kept that one.

    1. jsn

      Gotta keep that GDP growing!

      Killing and coercing are the only remaining state capability here.

      As the last two years demonstrate, the only way to keep the economy growing is to kill and coerce faster.

    2. Huey Long

      I had to commute crosstown on Friday and couldn’t believe how many cops there were for this funeral. It seems every local PD within a 100 mile radius sent at least one squad car full of cops (on the clock I bet) to this funeral.

      Getting crosstown was a pain and just about every side street between 50th and 42nd was blocked between 6th and Madison.

      1. Pat

        Prepare for Wednesday, the second funeral is now also scheduled for St Pat’s. And I am sure between the media and the various police it will be the same nightmare.

    3. chuck roast

      Sam Bowles has written extensively on the political economy of “guard labor”. It is indeed a vast superstructure that prevents any eruptions from below from threatening the ruling elite or their property. City, state and rent-a-cops, federal, state and immigrant prison guards and staff; all manner of judges, courts and associated staff. The macroeconomics of the prison industrial complex may be even bigger than the MIC. One thing they both have in common is there lack of social product.

      1. newcatty

        A thought about the prison industrial complex ( PIC). Consider that many of the employees in that system were sourced from the military. IIRC, they receive extra plus points in application status for their “service”. Then consider that many of these vets are walking wounded with ptsd. These mentally ill people are now in that PIC. The reports of vets with emotional or mental distress are increasingly occurring. Suicide also. Consider that could be an problematic situation for this country.

      2. newcatty

        The prison industrial complex (PIC). Consider that many cops and other employees in the PIC are military vets. IIRC, vets often get plus points in job applications for PIC employment. Then consider that it is reported regarding the increase in vets with PTSD, mental ilnesses, as well as committing suicide. To continue this line of thought, that means that many of these people have emotional and mental illnesses in these positions. Not good for this country.

        1. LifelongLib

          OK, but most police officers come from working-class backgrounds, which is also a demographic that often enlists in the military, so it’s not surprising that there’s a lot of overlap.

    4. Riverboat Grambler

      I like Queensryche but I heard “Empire” on the radio awhile back and it was the first time I really listened to the lyrics. I was expecting a song about American foreign policy or perhaps our various adventures in Latin America, instead I found myself saying “Wait, is this dude complaining that cops don’t get enough money to fight the War On Drugs?”

      “In fiscal year 1986 to ’87, local, state and federal governments spent a combined total of 16.6 billion dollars on law enforcement. Federal law enforcement expenditures ranked last in absolute dollars and accounted for only 6% of all federal spending. By way of comparison, the federal government spent 24 million more on space exploration, and 43 times more on national defense and international relations, than law enforcement”

      Wow, good point! 16.6 billion ain’t enough! Federal dollars don’t count! If only there was some kind of federal Agency to Enforce Drug policy…

      I like Queensryche, and I even like that song, but the idea that drug dealers are going to overrun society because the police are underfunded(!) is laughable.

  6. The Rev Kev

    “The IRS Wants Your Face”

    If you think that this is creepy, a few years ago I rang the Australian Tax Office and while navigating my way through the inevitable menu, an option was offered where in future I could be simply identified by my voice print. Sawwhatnow? I immediately backed out of that one but you knew that they had ID’d you already by your voice print which was now on file-

    1. GramSci

      I don’t talk to Alexa, but she’s my wife’s best friend. I haven’t followed voice synthesis technology for years, but I bet it would be trivial for a determined hacker to model her vocal tract and gain voiceprint access to whatever her voiceprint “secures”.

      1. GramSci

        … and, of course, the fact that I don’t address Alexia [sic] directly, doesn’t mean she doesn’t have my vocal tract parameters. :-(

        1. skk

          Ahh yes – phreaking. The glory days of (US) 70s hacking. I read about it and promptly tried it in the UK but alas no go – the systems were different. But it set me on the road to really understand different standards for telecomms and television comms,well away from my field of math and computing. And I stopped thinking of consumer boxes like TVs, DVD players as out of bounds but to explore their firmware ( sofware embedded in hardware ) – and latter day breaking thru that stupid region code stuff on DVD hardware players – after all how the hell was I going to play my UK DVDs on a US DVD player ?

          1. Dave in Austin

            Steve Jobs got his start in technology producing tone boxes for phone phreakers. But I knew one guy who could make the sounds himself.

            Will facial recognition software produce a crowd of teenage boys making avatars that mimic the next rock star so well that girls on the internet will swoon? Or fake fingerprints to get into bank accounts?

        2. chuck roast

          I remember the famed Captain Crunch who reportedly did this as a hobby. His greatest feat was said to have occurred when he called himself for free in two adjoining phone booths by making a number of connections around the world.

          1. Pate

            Studying in London 74-75 there was a public phone booth (“red telephone box”) with an apparent flaw that allowed free international calling. Word got around despite none of today’s social media and often there was a queue waiting their turn.

          2. lordkoos

            The reason he was called Captain Crunch was because at one point there was a whistle included in a box of the cereal, which when blown produced the exact tone/note that enabled you to hack the telephone service.

        3. Joe Renter

          I remember that, and had a ham radio friend who owned a “black box” that was used in phone booths, if I have that right, this was 73, I think.

          1. BeliTsari

            I remember using Captain Crunch whistles or grounding-pins on the headset diaphragm to get the coins back, impressed rich hippy friends. But the kids who stumbled on the totally upfront article, listing the dual -frequency touch-TONES helped pay my brother’s tuition at CMU. He was actually hand-assembling blue boxes (he’d sell to wannabe thugs, for $300) as the Rents simply opened his dormatory door with a city narc, looking to harvest sinsemilla, his roommate grew under GroLux lamps.


      2. Wukchumni

        I went out on a blind date with Alexa at my sister’s house and frankly bossed her around and she would have none of it when I asked her to read War And Peace in entirety she gave me a few sentence synopsis. I inquired as to the meaning of life and she was strictly non-committal, almost evasive.

        When I mistakenly uttered ‘Nomad’ it seemed to set her off and she went into a rash of riff: ‘Nomad (or Nomad MK-15c) was an interstellar space probe designed by Jackson Roykirk and launched from Earth in the year 2002 with a mission of seeking out new life. It was a prototype, and the only one of its type built.’

        If she was trying to scare me off, it worked.

        1. LifelongLib

          Star Trek original series “The Changeling”. Nomad is damaged in a collision with a space rock, then merges with an alien probe and goes around zapping anything that isn’t “perfect”, including the USS Enterprise.

    2. Keith Nemwan

      Re Rev Kev@ 8:27
      Both the banks I deal with want my voice print. I don’t give it but fear the day when there is no choice. If that day arrives I’ll switch banks, hoping there is an alternative.

        1. Yves Smith

          You have to get really insistent. Merely saying no won’t do it for many US banks. You need a reason why the voice recording cannot be relied upon.

          The line I use, that seems to work, is that I have assistants who navigate the phone tree and handle routine problems like chargebacks. So they can’t use the voice on the phone because it often isn’t mine.

          Citi then says they want to use it for fraud “only”. I then have to say, “What about the fact that my assistants talk to you more than I do don’t you understand?” That seems to get them to back off.

    1. Jason Boxman

      I hadn’t realized, but at the end you find:

      Starting in 2022, Hamalian changed her practice and began accepting patients age sixty-five and over. In the first two weeks of 2022, Hamalian treated 250 patients for covid. One of those patients was the advanced-age man with comorbidities who died.

      So all those patients she treated were actually under 65; I hadn’t expected that simply because Sarasota is overwhelmingly older, mostly retired persons. She’s going to get a deluge of patients now, possibly!

    2. Screwball

      Thanks for sharing this. What a brave lady, and a great story. I wish we had more of her. Bravo!

    3. Yeti

      I have been aware of the drug that cannot be named for about a year now and had my doctor prescribe me a 5 day dose last March as recommended by the FLCCC for when I contracted Covid. I was unable to have the prescription filled until September due to the fact that Merck was restricting access in Canada. I confirmed this with a phone call to Merck. Last Wednesday I started feeling under the weather with intense headache and over the next 24 hours got the chills, fever of 101, night sweats and body aches. Thinking I was getting the flu I did not take my I###########. Friday morning I booked a Covid test and was at the testing centre 2 hours later. Friday night was my worst night but I received my positive notification Saturday morning . Still feeling very ill I took my first dose. I also gave my girlfriend the same dose as she had started feeling ill that morning. My fever, body aches and chills were completely gone within 8 hours and my girlfriend only had a mild headache last night. Today (Sunday) we are both feeling relatively normal, myself a little weak but no other symptoms. We have enough for a couple more days treatment if need be. I should point out neither of us are vaccinated but we did have out of town company who did admit after the fact they felt like they had a touch of flu previous to arriving. One was double vaxed and the other had booster just before Christmas. Pretty sure that is where it came from as we spent time together ice fishing in a ice fishing tent. I realize I can’t positively attribute my recovery to my treatment but thought I would share our experience.

      1. lordkoos

        I’m a musician and have played several dangerous gigs in the past 6 months in terms of COVID exposure — indoors in smallish rooms where the audience and band are unmasked and ventilation is poor. When I know I have one of these jobs coming up I begin taking IVM as a prophylactic a couple of weeks beforehand. I’m 70 years old, in decent health and have not gotten seriously ill so far. I’ve had zero side effects from the use of IVM so I see no reason not to continue.

        1. Bruno

          “Maybe it is a really safe and effective placebo?”
          As are all placebos. Keys (catalysts) to our bodily self-healing powers.

    4. Big River Bandido

      Wow! Thank you not only for the link to this article but for informing me about the FLCCC, which I had not yet heard about. I’ll be reading a lot on this website in the coming days.

  7. Tom Stone

    Being a cop is not even in the top 5 most dangerous jobs, this constant “We are heroes” propaganda is nonstop horseshit.

    1. Huey Long

      The righty cop fanbois LOVE it with their thin blue line flags and punisher skulls proudly on display. It makes sense as their former object of affection, the US military, is racially browner in the aggregate and is a less selective ergo less prestigious group.

      1. JacobiteInTraining

        Its interesting to watch when just a few bits and pieces out of the lockstep enforced adulation emerge. I’m pretty far Left and even I hesitate to do anything that even remotely seems to question why such ostentatious displays are appropriate.

        My distant relative was in a prison camp after the Battle of the Bulge…he didn’t such a funeral.

        a ‘great uncle’ got himself killed in a tail gunners seat of a B-24, though it took a decade or two longer for the PTSD (alcohol) to finally kill him. He didnt get such a funeral.

        another uncle got himself killed in Vietnam, I see his name that he painted on the warehouse from ’67 before he went overseas. He didnt get such a funeral.

        Relatives of mine who are loggers, fishermen, hell….grocery clerks…work their fingers to the bone and broke their bodies so goods and services could flow. They didn’t get such a funeral.

        My Mom and Dad – both life long teachers – are dead now. Neither of them got such a funeral.

        Bah. Read the room better cops, read the room! But then again, i fear….this is exactly the point…they are reading the room and have made their call and choice…

      2. barefoot charley

        Our beloved volunteer fire dept chief happened to die with his boots on (his office desk) of a heart attack, while BSing with fellow volunteers. More than two thousand fancy-dressed firepersons in military drill from across California came to his funeral, deep in the sticks way up North. Apparently if he’d died in bed it would have been a private funeral.

      3. HotFlash

        Oh my, funny! But as a thought experiment, replace the Darth Vader March with Teddy Bears’ Picnic.

    2. LifelongLib

      According to ex-cop novelist Joseph Wamaugh (sp?) police work isn’t particularly dangerous physically but is extremely dangerous psychologically, because cops are always seeing the worst of people and people at their worst. I do know an ex-cop who quit because of that. He said he was starting to see his fellow human beings as a form of air pollution.

    1. Dr. John Carpenter

      It’s been interesting to me that this is the issue that moved them to pull their music from Spotify. Not the ridiculously low payouts or the way they treat artists. But the fact that they platform someone who, let’s be honest here, if they didn’t, someone else would.

      And really, this isn’t a bold stance to take as Greenwood points out. Yeah, Young and Mitchell get streams but neither need Spotify anymore than Spotify really needs them. I don’t see either being big enough today to make Spotify reconsider. Now if this was a Taylor Swift or Beyoncé or Drake, maybe. Even then, I’m not sure.

      This just seems a weird battle to take. I can think of a lot more worthwhile things to protest if I’m at the level of Neil Young or Joni Mitchell. And it really should be disconcerting to anyone that musicians with no background in such things have appointed themselves arbiters or medical facts and “disinformation”.

      1. Wukchumni

        I’m amazed at the durability of 50 year old music of Young & Mitchell and plenty of other troubadours and members of the band in terms of popularity and staying power in the public ear. They were the impressionist painters of our time though, i’ll give them that.

        It’d be tantamount to the juvenile delinquent I aspired to be in 1973 listening to 50 year old Dixieland jazz instead of Led Zeppelin. That didn’t happen.

        1. Zamfir

          I wonder, is that also true for older people in 1973? It’s not like teens are the core audience of Neil Young today. Think of Louis Armstrong or Bing Crosby in 1973, those had plenty of listeners in 1973, even if that audience might have been mostly older. And there’s songs from Berlin, Gershwin, Porter etc, that definitely had staying power in the public ear.

          A big difference, I think, is that recordings from the 1920s didn’t sound good anymore in later decades, as technology had matured in the mean time. So songs survived through newer recordings (often by other artists) and artists stayed known through later work, but these were both different from their older form.

          While Big yellow taxi and Heart of gold on Spotify are the same recording as would be played on the radio in 1973, frozen in time and firmly linked to the artists.

      2. Nikkikat

        Neither Young or Mitchell have any idea what they are talking about. We all know they have never listened to a Joe Rogan interview and likely didn’t even know who he was until it popped up someplace in the MSM. Rich people that like them are clueless. It’s also Orange man bad syndrome. The propaganda machine in DC promotes mindless sheep herders like them. Just like Springsteen having Obama joined at the hip, I always look at the company they keep. Remember how Bono loved George W Bush?

        1. urblintz

          Bono loved Jesse Helms.

          Springsteen loved Obama.

          James Taylor loved Kerry.

          Carole King and Bette Midler loved Hillary.

          …but it was the love of money (by the already rich) that brought them all together!

          and yet, I still love their music.

          (Bono not so much… U2 is vastly overrated imho)

          1. flora

            Midler’s cover of Boogie Woogie in The Divine Miss M album… divine. ! really. The whole album. good stuff.

        2. chuck roast

          Didn’t ol’ Neil just sell his entire songbook? Now that he has cashed out he can be just as pure as the driven Ontario snow.

          1. flora

            Well, he sold half of it for $150 mil to the outfit (hipgnosis), said outfit soon after bought out by Blackstone. After which Blackrock instantly started shorting the Hipgnosis catalog, it seems. (Neil and Joni as pawns in a godzilla vs mothera game? Say it ain’t so. / ;) ) Neil gets to keep his $150 mil no matter how the godzilla vs mothera fight comes out. / ;)

      3. jonboinAR

        I think of them as a couple of goof-balls with a certain amount of financial power due to their extensive catalogues, and public voice because they were large-scale popular singers. I’m enjoying, in a bad way I guess, seeing them make their dramatic exits from Spotify. It spot-lights how readily people can abandon such a supposedly sacred idea as many of us probably thought free speech was as soon as it suits them to. It’s alarming, but I’m glad it’s getting such wide exposure.

    2. PlutoniumKun

      Rogan seems the no.1 trigger symbol for all sorts of liberals. I wonder how many of them actually have seen his supposed offending statement (he wrongly claimed that having covid gave stronger immunity that the vax, his guest contradicted him, Rogan argued for a while quoting some studies that are out of date).

      What i find a little disappointing is that Rogan, with his popularity, just didn’t set up his own streaming service and made himself independent from any of the corporations, but I would guess even that could then be choked out.

      1. Objective Ace

        >What i find a little disappointing is that Rogan, with his popularity, just didn’t set up his own streaming service and made himself independent from any of the corporations

        He still can if he gets “blacklisted”. 100 million is a hundred million though.. if anything that would make it all the more likely he can afford the startup costs if he is forced to set out on his own. He sounds as if he feels independent from any of corporations (see him hosting Alex Jones after the earlier spotify outrage)

      2. Yves Smith

        It depends what you mean by “stronger”. Pre Omicron, infection-acquired immunity was more durable because you got some mucosal immunity.

        However, with Omicron, it appears those who got only those famous mild infections don’t get enough of an antibody response to fend off Omicron reinfections.

      1. Pat

        A one hit wonder with You’re Beautiful umpteem years ago, he seems to have a sense of humor about things. IIRC he was also a Veteran of UK military.

    3. Glen

      I’m getting my daily dose of MSM, and they are giving the Rogan story a couple minutes on national news.

      I’d really wonder if this doesn’t make Rogan subscriber numbers go up.

      To be honest, I’d much rather watch a Rogan episode with Young and Mitchell being interviewed, but it’s almost as if the generational gap there is a bit too big to make the cut.

    4. QuicksilverMessenger

      And to add to the ridiculousness of it all- All these performers have big YouTube channels, including Rogan. Is Young going to bail on YouTube now too? I also saw Peter Frampton getting in on the act and telling Neil ‘good job, come on over to Apple Music, it’s better here’. But of course that nut job Bannon has very popular podcast on Apple Music. I guess that means Frampton and Young are just fine with that?

  8. griffen

    Sports desk commentary, men’s tennis is live this morning on the US east coast. Nadal against Medvedev.

    5th set in men’s championship, Australian Open. I’ve cheated by tuning into it, midway of 4th set.

    1. ProNewerDeal

      I also caught the 5th set. A pleasure to see part of this historical match.

      Nadal’s focus, “try hard for play good” tenacious consistent work ethic, in my view are inspirational to see.

      I look forward to the 3 remaining majors this year.

    2. ChiGal

      I opted not to get up at 3:30a and was rewarded when I woke up with Rafa’s comeback kid win. Wishing I had gotten up an hour earlier but didn’t know it would go on so long. What competitors, both of them, and what an amazing human being Rafa is. My mom was a huge fan until she died and I wish she was here to savor the moment with me.

      1. Foy

        Yep he’s fantastic, his composure his unbelievable. And the way he talks and presents in press conferences. First class. His autobiography written in 2012 is a great read, to understand how he and his family approach things and how he developed his mental approach to life. Very sporting family, uncles who were great soccer players etc.

    3. dougie

      I cheated by starting the recording at 3:30 AM, two hours before I began watching. I timed it out well, watching key games and points, and was “live” for the last three games of the match. All I can say is WOW! But no spoiler from me. I really enjoy hearing John McEnroe cover the matches, although I was not a fan when he was playing.

    4. PlutoniumKun

      It amuses me the amount of twitter commentary praising Nadal for his vaccination status. They seemingly are unaware of Nadals long history of expertise in certain cutting edge pharmaceuticals as the now sadly defunct site used to chronicle in some detail.

      1. griffen

        Interesting tidbit there, I must have missed that as a scandal. I’m pretty familiar with Armstrong saga and the Balco saga that purportedly altered baseball players and baseball records, as well as altered striving Olympians. I say baseball records were purportedly altered but I am being facetious.

        Better living through better science.\sarc

  9. flora

    I have a comment in mod land. It’s a link to Greenwald’s latest column, no paywall.

    “The Pressure Campaign on Spotify to Remove Joe Rogan Reveals the Religion of Liberals: …”

    1. Carolinian

      An important piece that goes with Taibbi’s recent column about attacks on Substack (Glenn and Matt practically a tag team). One could make up theories about how this new authoritarianism is a unique generational phenom if not for the way it closely mirrors the fifties McCarthy period that was led by culturally very different Republicans. Perhaps the common denominator is that power doesn’t like being challenged and in the fifties the big business Repubs ruled the roost whereas now–culturally at least–the PMC Dems dominate. The zeal for censorship reflects the insecurity of both groups.

      Back then people finally had enough and a decade of rebellion followed. May it happen this time as well and soon.

      1. juanholio

        Seems like the culture wars are just one group of Americans who want “someone” to tell another group of Americans to STFU.

        Getting up in arms about the issue of the day, and taking to the internet to shill for your team, is playing into the entire reason these wedge issue are promoted. i.e. to divide and demoralize us.

        Wouldn’t we all be better if it people just minded their own business, and didn’t always take the bait?

        There are better ways to fill an empty existence than vacuuming up and regurgitating divisive propaganda to all and sundry!

    2. Lee

      For some history on culture wars and censorship you might find this podcast of interest: Things Fell Apart.

      I’m just a couple of episodes in. He begins with an account of how evangelicals, who were initially uninterested in the issue of abortion became avid anti-abortionists. He also discusses censorship starting with the tale of right-wing/evangelical Alice Moore’s campaign in the 70s to ban books in West Virginia schools. He also provides an example of “left-wing” intolerance in the the firing of a college dean because she recommended to an anti-racist student the anti-racist autobiography by by black comedian and civil rights activist Dick Gregory entitle Nigger, because the student was offended by the word, never mind the authorial intent and contents of the work. At least Alice Moore bothered to read the books she wanted banned.

      1. Pate

        Have you a chance to read Nancy Maclean’s “Democracy in Chains”?
        Haven’t checked out your linked podcast, but it seems much of what you describe is broadly related to Brown v Board of Education and more specifically the state of Virginia’s response to school desegregation as the genesis for the changes you describe. IMHO a very important book for understanding what has happened in America since 1956. From wiki:”MacLean critically examines public choice economics, the philosophy of economist James M. Buchanan at George Mason University, which became a significant influence on the libertarian movement and the Republican Party, and formed the foundation for the political activities of the Koch brothers in the U.S.”

        1. Carla

          “Democracy in Chains” — a most important book, in my estimation. It explains so much about how we got to this point.

      2. Jessica

        I am late to the dance again, but after Khrushchev was forced out and was living in anonymous retirement, he finally got a chance to read Doctor Zhivago and decided that he should not have had it banned when he was the head of the Soviet Union.

        There is something new and distressing about folks who claim to be on the left demanding censorship on behalf of technocrats who are aligned with our oligarchs.

    1. ambrit

      The Powers That Be have already begun their campaign to rebrand the coronavirus pandemic as ‘endemic.’ This normalizes the higher death toll.
      So, alas, I must assert that this ‘pandemic’ will never end.
      As I commented a few days ago; “I expect to be masking and social distancing for the rest of my life.”

    2. Pelham

      Many thanks to Lambert for posting those threads! IMO they rise to George Carlin-level hilarity, and they’re the best laugh I’ve had in at least the two years of the pandemic.

    3. Joe Well

      I “braved” the blizzard yesterday to go to the office in the middle of Boston and stayed til it was over around 11pm, something poetic about the whistling sound the wind makes against the buildings and the sensation of being in a giant snow globe, protected from the power of nature by what was left of civilization, a great business district triply deserted due to Covid, it being Saturday, and finally the blizzard. Streets and sidewalks like they might look like after the collapse of civilization.

      And then this morning the snow blower broke and I spent the better part of the day helping us shovel out. I am over snow now. I have no more patience for people who insist on acting like snow is still a thing with their big giant uncomfortable coats and gloves. You can’t let fear dictate your life. Nothing but flip flops and board shorts for me from here on out. /s

  10. Mikel

    “What the Killing of Two N.Y.P.D. Officers Means for New York” The New Yorker

    The article is a long winded way of asking where Adams stands on gun control.

    The two officers were killed answering a domestic dispute call and police have been known to dread the very dangerous domestic dispute calls.
    They’d probably feel safer being called to break up a bar brawl among strangers.

    1. Tom Stone

      The ” Sullivan Act” was passed in 1920, it is still one of the strictest Gun Control laws in the Nation.
      It was a reaction to the danger posed by “Swarthy Southern Europeans” to the good people of New York.
      It has had little or no effect on violent crime because violent criminals are not law abiding and also because the causes of violent crime are socioeconomic and cultural.
      Poverty,inequality, corruption and lack of opportunity along with a lack of mental health care have a lot more to do with violent crime than any so called “Sensible Gun Laws”.
      Virtue signalling is cheap and gets headlines,addressing the problems of a deeply unjust and corrupt society is a lot more difficult.

      1. Carla

        Agreed: poverty, inequality, corruption, lack of opportunity and a dearth of mental health care lead to violent crime. So do cheap, abundant and now computer-printed weapons.

        I suggest you look at the numbers of homicides in other (ahem) “advanced” countries, none of which labor under the second amendment or anything like it. In a country with 81 million gun owners and 393 million guns in private hands, a lot of people get shot.

      2. vegasmike

        New York has always been a city of poverty, inequality, corruption, and lack of mental health care. The Sullivan laws were passed in 1911. And guess what? Until the 1970s New York City had a relatively low homicide rate. I lived in NYC most of my life and I knew very few people who owned guns. Guns are like cars, many people in New York feel they can live without either.

    2. CitizenSissy

      Not many jobs require responding to a situation that may involve 1) anger management issues; 2) drug/alcohol overuse; and 3) likelihood of firearms. A mass exodus from law enforcement wouldn’t at all surprise me.

      1. Roger

        Don’t make me laugh, nurses (and immigrant store-keepers!) deal with such issues every day and are paid a hell of a lot less than cops who are far less trained. The US police force is one of few redoubts left for little-trained manual workers to earn big bucks with little oversight of bad behaviour and a wonderful pension. There are many, many occupations more dangerous and stress-inducing than being a US cop, that pay a hell of a lot less and have real consequences for bad behaviour.

        In other nations the police have usually been through multi-year training and many have degrees in criminology. The US is the one place in the Western world that I am concerned about being brutalized or shot by a cop, everywhere else (Europe, UK, Japan, Canada) the thought never enters my mind.

        1. Gareth

          So you would feel safer if police patrols were composed of professionals with advanced degrees rather than blue-collar workers?

      2. Big River Bandido

        As was recently linked/documented on NC (within the last 7-10 days), it’s far more dangerous being a food delivery worker.

  11. Lemmy Caution

    I’m done with blizzards, but the snow kept falling.

    So your wise and benevolent government responded with a bold vision that was breathtaking in its scope: string up tarps over every inch of every freeway, highway, side road, sidewalk, park, yard and driveway. The goal? Prevent a single snowflake from touching the ground.

    Despite the best expert forecasts, however, the snow fell relentlessly and began to spill over and break through the tarps. The solution was to erect a second layer of tarps over the first one. “Fully tarped, fully protected” was the rallying cry that rang across the land.

    When that second layer became overwhelmed from ceaseless snowfall, the experts were undeterred. The obvious next step was to erect a third layer. When the third layer proved once again unable to hold back the snow, the long-term solution was finally clear: as long as the snow keeps falling, we must continually add more layers of tarps.

    Your government – in partnership with tarp manufacturers – pledges to continue to develop and install new and improved tarps to address this insidious threat.

    Even during brief lulls of snow, or as the snow stops falling with Spring, the tarp building will continue in the anticipation of the seasonal return of snowfall.

    Every citizen must participate in this effort. You will not be allowed to deviate from the tarp solution. You cannot allow the snow to fall naturally on any surface within your purview. If it does, you are not allowed to shovel your own sidewalk or driveway, nor by any means treat the icy build-ups that may occur. Any anti-tarp beliefs or activities are forbidden. Full compliance is patriotic.

    Go to to order your booster pack of 4 tarps now.

    After all, as your health experts say, “Another day, another layer!”

    1. Lambert Strether Post author

      > So your wise and benevolent government responded with a bold vision that was breathtaking in its scope: string up tarps over every inch of every freeway, highway, side road, sidewalk, park, yard and driveway. The goal? Prevent a single snowflake from touching the ground.

      Lol. They did nothing remotely like thisl.

      1. Pat

        Only because certain ungrateful roads and highways and many paths refused the tarps. There were only breakdowns because of those open spaces…no tarps collapsed under the weight…..we need multiple levels AND fences keeping untarped roads away from our safely tarped highways….no no do not look at the big half hanging tarps in a covered highway over there it is only because an uncovered road kicked one of the supports

      2. ambrit

        Even you must admit the our ‘Wise and Benevolent Archons’ are determined that not a single Snowflake suffers the indignity of touching the Ground State of Being, Reality.
        (I’ll shut up now.)

        1. Dave in Austin

          Cheer up; there’s a reason why those people are called “Snowflakes”. They can’t take the heat. Of course I live in Austin… and we are about to get the second “Cold Snap of the Century” in two years next weekend.

      3. Skip Intro

        They did, however, work with private sector partners to assure access to tarps, and very affordable rigging, with subsidies for those meeting certain arcane requirements, all managed through a state-of-the-art web-based user portal.

      1. Synoia

        As a result of the Tarp explosion, the hedge fund “Blackish Rock” has purchased all Tarp factories, and tripled the price of Tarps, after moving all Tarp manufacturing to China.

        1. griffen

          Well played! We could have fun with a naming algorithm contest.

          TarredandStoned Terrifical-Tarps

          I’d like to buy the world a Tarp, and keep it company…

    2. ilpalazzo

      This doesn’t work because the snowstorm analogy was about masks, not vaccines. False divisions, well played again and again.

  12. a fax machine

    re: credibility

    If the US cannot lead using Enlightened Liberalism as the Shining City Upon The Hill, then it becomes nakedly obvious that power is derived from capital, violence and war. If this happens, most of the planet will stop siding with the US because China has more money (at least for now) and Russia more/better warmaking resources (or at least a willingness to literally sell them to anyone asking). America’s security guarantees are the *only* thing underpinning global capitalist markets, headquartered in Manhattan. Remove America’s Naval guarantee and suddenly global trade stops. Remove America’s Air guarantee and global travel stops. Remove America’s commando guarantee and suddenly rouge states and safe-havens for terrorism emerge. So there are important reasons to be concerned with credibility’s worthiness. I use another term – America’s credit rating. Every time a foreign country is able to stop trade (such as oil, remember the opec embargo?), airplanes (the KAL shootdown, 9/11 etc), or otherwise use their markets to bully the western market investors will become skittish and stop investing in America until the problem is resolved. If the problem isn’t resolved then a crisis of confidence occurs, the capital class shits itself, and *any* sacrifice to resolve it becomes necessary.

    With this considered, America’s commitments must inherently be worldwide, all-consuming and global. If any part of the world is allowed to be omitted from America’s commitments, then an alternative to an American-led order exists. This has been increasingly the case whether it be radical islam, Chinese-styled socialism or Russian-styled capitalism. Why would any country not America join America when America only offers false lies about safety and onerous cultural tribute? Why bother with America when America’s industries are captured by Chinese computer chip companies and individual Americans captured by Jihadist oil companies? It is repulsive, and as America’s leaders run out of rope to work with most of the planet is turning away. It can only accelerate.

  13. polar donkey

    I can rest assured now that the bloated budgets of law enforcement, defense, and intelligence agencies will protect DC from Russian sponsored, Nazi, anti-vaxx truckers seige by weakening all the bridges across the country.

  14. Mikel

    ‘Huge mess of theft and fraud:’ artists sound alarm as NFT crime proliferates” Guardian

    This is what happens when a method of distribution is illogically thought of as content.

    1. griffen

      There is an awful lot occurring in the Cryptocurrency world right now, and more attention is perhaps good in the long run. An opaqueness to the whole model of the NFT just strikes me as bizarre.

      The article just above that from Single Lunch gave a few samples of how Bitcoin pricing can get or perhaps had been manipulated.

      This stuff just ain’t my bag, no way.

  15. The Rev Kev

    “The CIA lost track of who runs the UK, so I picked up the slack”

    These books only record the names of the people serving in government so it is really just a list of a bunch of Presidents, Ministers, Prime Ministers, etc. What I really want to see is the secret CIA books listing who is really running those countries – and on whose behalf.

  16. Tom Stone

    The first thing I noticed when I woke up this morning was my right elbow,pain level 3.
    That sprain had been completely healed for several years until I took the Moderna Jab, April 24 2021.
    The original sprain took 4 months to heal.
    And the finger I mildly sprained last May hasn’t healed at all.
    It’s a small price to pay for complete protection against Covid-19….

    1. Synoia

      You have a Repetitive strain injury. Stop saluting all politicians by showing them your finger as a salute to their munificence.

  17. stefan

    Don’t know if you linked to this already, but it’s pretty interesting:

    Some choice bits:

    “As soon as you bring in the public sector to solve one set of problems—like the need to develop a vaccine and preserve peoples’ income while we put the economy into deep freeze—you’re opening the door to the state doing other things. This is a very important lesson of our moment: we have proven that the federal government is far more capable of managing the economy than people thought.”

    “The core problem with economics is not that it supports particularly conservative positions. The problem is that it just doesn’t have any purchase in the real world at all.“

    “What I find sort of comforting is that American history has never been very democratic. There have always been entrenched elites and enormous institutional barriers to progressive change, and there has always been a crazy radical right that would rather burn the country down than give up any of its privileges. But plenty of people fought—not the ones whose names, necessarily, are on the monuments—and did what they could, and we gradually acquired a more democratic, responsive system. We have to keep doing what people have always done: a mix of arguments and organizing and putting your body on the gears of the system.”

    1. stefan

      Another good quote:

      “There’s a dangerous impulse on the left to overstate the significance of financial crises and bubbles. The problem with the system we live in is not that it occasionally breaks down spectacularly. The problem is that even when the system is functioning, it leads to terrible lives for most people. Not just in terms of economic insecurity and all that comes from it—poverty and homelessness and addiction—but also the tedious, boring work that so many people do. They have no autonomy; they’re bossed around all day. Maybe it was an intellectual failure of the left a decade ago to make the financial crisis itself the symbol of the failure of the economic system. Focusing on bubbles and crises leads to a political focus on stabilization. But it’s not as if preventing financial crises and bubbles would mean we have an acceptable system.”

  18. Finn

    ~US targets Russian disinformation in bid to defend Ukraine

    Just more Hilleristic Steele level propaganda from the special interests that brought us 9-11, either as a promotion of “Russia’s Vietnam”, the special express visa window at the U.S. Embassy in Pakistan for Mujaheddin, or if you don’t believe in coincidences, the event itself, the losing war in Afghanistan, the losing war in Iraq, the losing war in Syria and maybe coming right up, the air temperature in your bedroom pegging to 6,000 degrees.

    We have met the enemy and it ain’t us and it isn’t the Russians,
    it’s the special interest parasites that have occupied our government.

  19. Wukchumni

    Turning penury into lack of snow plow shares…

    The Generals Highway is the main mountain road connecting Sequoia NP with Kings Canyon NP which operate as one unit.
    It starts here in Three Rivers and ends up in Cedar Grove, at the furthest point in the NP, all built from the 1920’s to 1940’s.

    The 20 mile or so section going from the Giant Forest to Grant Grove had always been cleared after a snowfall so as to allow winter passage for 65 years since it was constructed and then about 2008 NPS decided to no longer snow plow between the parks, which got rid of the dedicated knowhow of machine, conditions and terrain, not to mention the lessened need of snow plows.

    The stretch from here to the snowline in Sequoia NP is about 12 miles and then you can expect snow in the winter where the road goes to the Wuksachi Lodge and dead ends there, another 12 miles in 5,000 to 7,000 feet altitude.

    For years now since they turned plows into more law enforcement swords, you can expect it to be 2 to 4 days before Sequoia NP opens up again to vehicle traffic after a snowstorm, whereas it was always cleared immediately back then when they had enough equipment and personnel to do it quickly.

  20. nippersdad

    Re: US targets Russian disinformation, I found that article pretty mind blowing for its’ utter shamelessness and free use of unsourced weasel words. More in the same vein can be found in Caitlyn Johnstones’ latest, MSM pundits push idea that criticizing US policy on Russia makes you a Russian agent, wherein MSNBC actually uses useful idiot Peter Strzok to call Tucker Carlson a useful idiot.

    One might think that they would recognize how that would affect the MSM’s credibility after the implosion of RussiaGate, but no. McCarthyites still have no shame.

    1. Screwball

      Most of the PMC people I know still strongly believe in RussiaGate. They also believe Russia & China are both trying to start a war. They also believe Tucker Carlson is under the influence of Putin (because he denounced going to war), as well as the large truck protest in Canada (not sure how they know about the trucker protest – nary a word on the front page of CNN). They also think the only corruption in government was under Trump. Nancy doesn’t trade on inside information, but Ted Cruz does. They also think Harris & Mayo Pete are the coolest people ever, and Jen Psaki is a national treasure.

      And whatever you do, never, ever, suggest the candidate who got the most votes EVER, might have early stage dementia. They get really wound up about that one.

      And that doesn’t ever cover the pandemic hysteria they suffer (all because of someone else). They hate everybody but themselves.

    2. Nate

      Let them, nay encourage them!, to keep talking.

      Make sure to goad, trigger and induce them to become more ridiculous and to help people identify who they are through repetition, especially before the midterms.

      Prediction, Tucker Carlson becomes President James Webb’s, or DeSantis’ press secretary, or better yet V.P. or even better yet, President.

      If Ronald Reagan, of far lesser intelligence, could do it, Carlson can.
      Major and ex House member Tulsi Gabbard would make a fine V.P., or,
      Secretary of Defense in the Carlson Administration.

    3. Cat Burglar

      Funny that The Hill article on the USG anathametizing Russian disinformation is very similar to an AP article published a couple days ago. Almost like the journalists and editors were working from a common playbook, or there was some kind of coordination. Both articles note praise by experts — who won’t go on the record saying it — of a new openness by the USG in sharing intelligence evaluations of the Ukraine situation — also without attribution — but presenting no evidence.

      I remember wondering in the run-up to the US Iraq invasion why, if the allegations of WMDs were true, why we did not get to see what would have to have been overflight air sampling results (showing that nuclear materials were being fabricated; the US has been able to do that since the 50s): records of telecommunications between leaders, military personnel, and civilians (a capability publicly documented since the 1980s, at least), satellite images (a capability well known from public sources for decades); and the results of traffic analysis of reputed WMD movements around the country. All of that would have been adequate to understand if there was a WMD threat — but not one reporter raised the question.

      It is the Dog That Didn’t Bark. And the silence is conspicuous now. Sure, the article in The Hill uses the “sources and methods” excuse, but they just want to divert attention. They want to eliminate evidentiary questions about their claims, and keep those questions out of public discourse — these articles are an attempt to manage problems with their propaganda presentation. Other states already have some general idea of what means the US has, so the public is the only one being kept in the dark, as usual.

      Cases like our invasion of Iraq, or the Ukraine crisis, usually have our handlers trying to convince us to support something really fast. Finding good information, sourcing claims, comparing accounts, and researching the storm of well-funded BS takes some time, and often you have to guess. When new reporting is unreliable, as it is in this case, you often have to proceed by hunches informed by historical information that is reliable. As with the US attack on Iraq, I based my questions about intelligence on Bamford’s excellent history of the NSA (so good the NSA sued him to prevent publication!), and just assumed that what we had in 2003 was as good as we had in the 1980s, when the book was written. The Snowden revelations really allowed an update.

      Just like the US official diplomatic histories that contain disclaimers on their accuracy because relevant information is still classified, there is a lot going on behind the scenes we won’t know until the facts are pried out of their cold hands. So a citizen has to form educated guesses based on the history of lies, decoys, half-truths, “clearer than the truth” declarations, and so on.

  21. Wukchumni

    As much as this is in bad taste, I think i’ve lost mine as coffee is pretty icky* and wine is missing fruity notes. Chocolate still seems borderline enjoyable though to the tongue.

    * icky in how it tasted when you were a kid and wondered how adults could ever like that stuff? My parents would buy ice cream for us and coffee ice cream for them, there was no chance of the progeny making off with that, not gonna happen.

      1. Wukchumni

        Yes, caught it about 3 weeks ago and have been asymptomatic. I asked the other 5 in our ski group who tested positive if they were experiencing anything similar in loss of taste or smell and i’m the only one so far in sensory deprivation.

        1. The Rev Kev

          Same here. Hope you get your taste for coffee back again. A world without coffee is simply not one worth living in.

          1. Wukchumni

            Pundits like to claim the big boom really only got going with the industrial revolution, but it was all coffee powered.

    1. Paleobotanist

      It will hopefully come back. My senses of taste and smell did back after awhile. Taste first, then slowly smell.

    2. Milton

      I wonder if Synsepalum dulcificum, more commonly known as Miracle Fruit, would help with those that have had their smell/taste affected by Covid. Any berry that can transform sour foods to sweety goodness must have some properties beneficial to taste blindness.

    3. griffen

      Not too sure about your beverage consumption, but thought drinking a few light beers might give an indication of the taste sensitivity returning. By way of example, if you can determine after several Keystone Light or Natural Lights that indeed they are terrible beer choices then recovering taste is underway.

      Then again they taste like beer that costs $15 for 24 cans.

        1. Wukchumni

          Yes, I have enrolled in a 12 step program* to enhance my addiction to Topo Chico, which seems unaltered-there being no taste to sparkling water.

          * 12 pack of 12 oz bottles

      1. Wukchumni

        I think even in my state of being unable to discern good or bad taste, my taste buds would still recognize Keystone Light as being a very lightly enhanced water with hops properties.

        1. eg

          As the Canadian joke goes about American beer: it’s like sex in a canoe — family-blogging close to water.

  22. John B

    On “Long COVID symptoms and duration in SARS-CoV-2 positive children”

    What struck me about this study is how long-lasting symptoms increased with age, even among teens. For example, Fig. 2 shows 19% of 9-year-olds with COVID suffered symptoms >4 weeks compared to 51% of 17-year-olds. Good news for children, maybe, but not adults!

    That said, and I’m no expert, but Ziauddeen’s primary criticism of the study seems misplaced. He writes:

    “The key difference is that the COVID group questionnaire asks about a set of symptoms following PCR-confirmed COVID, whereas the control questionnaire asks for the same symptoms at any point in the *last year*. Crucially it does not ask if the symptoms occurred during a period of acute illness or in relation to chronic illnesses that the child has (5% in both groups endorsed a chronic illness). If the symptoms occurred during an acute illness they should be excluded.”

    Yet, the study claims that questionnaires for both COVID group and controls “consisted of identical questions regarding … symptoms lasting for more than four weeks.” The study reported only symptoms >4 weeks. Symptoms >4 weeks are long-lasting, not “during an acute illness.” Thus, the study makes a fair point: even before COVID, a fair number of children suffered long-lasting symptoms like headaches, fatigue, and concentration difficulties. The study claims that previous studies failed to control for that and so may overstate the prevalence of long COVID.

    1. Objective Ace

      >Thus, the study makes a fair point: even before COVID, a fair number of children suffered long-lasting symptoms like headaches, fatigue, and concentration difficulties.

      There’s no way to no if this was before covid. They may well have had covid sometime over the past year, in fact–I’m sure some have, The question is how many? Its not inconceivable that half the “control” group had covid making it impossible to compare the long term effects of covid relative to a baseline of no covid

  23. ProNewerDeal

    Does anybody know status of any other COVID vaccines getting approved in USA?

    Wiki page says the inactivated virus-type Covaxin has the application submitted, & the protein subunit type Novavax is “TBD 21Q4”. Both types are more mature than the very new mRNA (Moderna, Pfizer) or moderately new adenovirus viral vector type (Johnson & Johnson) approved vaccines, which I refer to here as JMP.

    Afaict Covaxin has a safe (moreso than JMP) & effective (perhaps slightly less than JMP) track record globally, especially in its native India with millions of doses & a historical track record/data. Novavax has been approved & started being deployed in multiple nations recently with the last few months.

    I just wonder if & when (approx what quarter) Covaxin and/or Novavax will be available to regular Joes here in Murica.

    I recall a headline of Faucin claiming “America does not need more vaccines”. His statement appears corrupt & not scientific/medical.

    I got the Johnson back in May. I wonder if it would be more prudent to take Covaxin or Novavax rather a booster of Johnson. Especially since it is unclear if Johnson booster (or any of the JMP) incrementally protects much against Omicron.

    In constrast, Mexico has deployed 7 vaccines, including Covaxin, & the Cuban protein subunit Abdala has been recently approved.

    So in terms of vaccines in medicine, it seems that Mexico is leading in Freedom, whereas Murica is leading in FreeDumb

  24. allan

    Time yet again to reprice those executive stock options:

    Package deliveries boom, but Boeing’s aging cargo line risks losing dominance to Airbus
    [Seattle Times]

    … A severe air cargo market dislocation looms ahead that will make obsolete Boeing’s current jet freighter lineup and provide an opening for rival Airbus.

    Boeing has been bleeding cash through a cascade of crises — the 737 MAX crashes, the pandemic, the 787 delivery halt — and has lost significant engineering talent in the downturn. Yet if Boeing is to retain its iron grip on the jet freighter market, it must in the next few years develop and launch new cargo aircraft. …

    `Has lost’ has lost agency.

  25. NotTimothyGeithner

    Re: wordle

    Wordle 225 3/6


    I’m reminded of Michael Jordan’s views on golf which amount to that anyone can play, play with anyone else, and get better except Charles Barkley. With the limit of one word a day, everyone is playing on a similar playing field. It doesn’t take much time.

      1. CanCyn

        Me too! Such a fun, quick word game. I do it every morning with my first coffee. I am very glad there is only 1 a day. Someone said there is an archive and you can play older ones and more than one a day. I am not even going to look for it ?

  26. Culp Creek Curmudgeon

    So  Raytheon and Lockheed Martin  are openly telling their investors that tensions between the countries are good for business.

    If only there was some catchy way of describing this complex of the military and industry…

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      It’s not that Biden is lazy, he is. It’s just the complete carelessness for stuff where they’ve done 99% of the work. They almost finish and go, “oh no, Boba Fett just dropped on streaming I can’t miss this. “

  27. Jason Boxman

    Across the immense fitness landscape, the coronavirus has many, many different paths to higher inherent transmissibility or immune escape. Take the example of transmissibility, Otto says. A virus could replicate very, very fast, so that patients shed high levels of it. Delta seems to do this, and it was more virulent. Or the virus could switch to replicating mostly in the nose and throat, where it might be easier to transmit, rather than deep in the lungs. Omicron seems to do this, and it is less virulent. The next variant could go either way—or it might chart an entirely new course. A version of Omicron called BA.2 is now outcompeting the classic Omicron variant in the United Kingdom and Denmark, though it’s still unclear what advantage it might have.

    This is interesting because the official message at the beginning of the pandemic, we were more or less reassured that the corona virus cannot possibly mutate all that quickly, and with vaccination we’ll all be good.

    But there was never any reason to believe that, as anyone reading NC early on knew.

    1. Yves Smith

      This is the worst junk science.

      The reason Omicron is more contagious is not that it “replicates in the nose”. The reason it is more contagious is primarily that it has similar brute replication force to Delta (which is way higher than wild type) and it evades most immunity, both vaccine induced and prior infection induced. They are assigning primary/total causality to what is at most a secondary factor so as to avoid admitting the perfect vaccines don’t work well against Omicron (even a boost only lasts ~10 weeks)

      1. Jason Boxman

        You wouldn’t know that about boosters from Establishment media. I keep seeing claims about how amazingly effective a booster shot is… without any qualification that after weeks or months it will be as ineffective as the first two shots now are. With so much misinformation, it’s hard to know what to believe; I only know that the official narrative is not to be trusted, and avoid leaving home whenever possible.

  28. Dave in Auston

    A few comments on the NYC police funeral… and immigration.

    A parade; three flags in front; the middle one the flag of the Republic of Ireland. Followed by the NYPD bagpipers. For five generations almost all the NY cops were Irish; maudlin, practical, generally decent guys who were happy to have an outdoor job and civil service benefits to support their families. The new ones have last names like Rivera, Mora… but the chip-on-his shoulder defensive mindset and the urge most poor people have to do something useful and important with their lives remains. Being Irish in New York City is a state of mind, open to all races and colors.

    The two dead cops, 22 and 26. Jason, a goofy kid from the Dominican Republic (see his high school video), and Wilbert, his family I think from Puerto Rico. What sort of poor immigrants from lousy little islands name their kids Jason and Wilbert? Immigrants with aspirations of upward mobility and merging into the new world. Jews with names like Evan; Chinese kids with names like Jason, Jack and Samantha. As they used to say “You’re either on the bus or not on the bus”. These are people getting on the bus.

    Huge cop turnouts. The union didn’t have to order them to come in from Pittsburgh and Paris. They just came. In one way it is a bit ridiculous; police deaths are way down; there are a lot of jobs more likely to kill you; these gatherings serve to reinforce the feelings of the average cops that theirs is a dangerous profession.

    But this one struck a chord because of the way it happened. A minor domestic disturbance call from an elderly woman about her loner, middle-age son with a long record. Three cops show up (3!). They interview mom. One cop stays with mom; two other go back to knock on the guy’s bedroom door. Just routine…. Until it isn’t. The door opens. He has a 40 caliber and aims for the head. Harlem Hospital is only a block away but it doesn’t matter. The third cop goes for the head too. What must that moment have been like… for the cop (Sumit Sulon, a young immigrant I assume from south Asian family) and the mom?

    We all love to protect ourselves; play it safe. Sometimes all the “Play it safe” is the world doesn’t matter. Ask the guys at Cantor Fitzgerald on 9/11 or the kids caught in the school shootings. We hate and fear that which we cannot control… and the “we” includes the crying cops, the wife holding the folded flag, the people who drove in from the burbs with their kids to stand on the sidewalk in a blizzard to watch the coffin go by… and the killer’s mother.

    1. Riverboat Grambler

      Yeah well, that was the job they signed up for and they knew the risks. Not sure why their deaths warrant a parade, unless the cops feel the need for a grandstanding show of force after all the protests and turmoil that have come about as a result of their own brutality and corruption.

  29. Tom Collins' Moscow Mule

    Such grist for the intellectual idea(s) mill needs further deeper and prolonged exploration and contemplation (on my part):

    “Tensions growing between Washington and Kyiv as Ukraine-Russia crisis drags on CNN.”

    “Biden and his advisers, meanwhile, have been annoyed by Zelensky’s public downplaying of the threat and thinly veiled jabs at the US President, and believe that public warnings and threats to Russia of severe consequences are a key to deterrence. . . . . His comments were the clearest indication to date of the boiling disagreements, . . . . ”

    That certainly cannot be good for the PR fog machine (for eg., “How PR Sold the War in the Persian Gulf”) and its goal to shape, direct, and manage public perceptions by “Crystallizing Public Opinion” (Bernays).

    .”The manipulation of the American mind: Edward Bernays and the birth of public relations”

    It must be another case of, “What we’ve got here is failure to communicate. Some men you just can’t reach.”, in the sense that one should not be over zealous about crazy ideas such as autonomy, as in, you should embrace your manipulated freedom to choose from a chosen basket of choices that are preselected/presented to you and managed for you.

    The following is related to the former in more than just a tangential, or metaphorical sense, if one considers the entire story line for what it is, i.e., the influence and manipulation of both narratives and people in order to achieve a desired level of both self interested and directed exploitation and outcomes; where, any means justifies the desired ends.

    “Everyone who consumes articles online should read Trust Me, I’m Lying by Ryan Holiday. The book describes how economic incentives in the online media industry has brought about a second era of yellow journalism.”

    “An Anatomy of Bitcoin Price Manipulation Single Lunch”

  30. lance ringquist

    the article on eugenics reminds me of nafta billy clinton saying in essence about china, we can beat them little yellow people. he said it in a much more polite way, even nafta joe biden said it a few years back.

    nafta joe bidens let’er rip pandemic response, is the response of a believer in eugenics

    nafta hillary clinton calling the victims of nafta billy clintons disastrous policies, “DEPLORABLE” is eugenics

    the feverish free trader woodrew wilson was a feverish believer in eugenics

    free trade is actually eugenics

    About the author

    Our Great American Heritage
    “Looking beneath the surface for the truth in history.”
    Woodrow Wilson Suported The Science of Eugenics.

    August 15, 2015

  31. MP

    Have to call out bullshit even when I mostly agree with the premise.
    “The country with the third highest military budget in the world is the United States police department.”

    ok, well if you have those numbers per capita, France is higher, is it surprising that countries with more population spend more.

    What if you adjust for cost of living, what does India look like.

    What if you normalize by crime rate?

    This isn’t informative, just pure propaganda.

    That said I wish we could have less police and especially less police power.

    Cops are violent in the US because criminals are violent, the culture is violent. Nobody wants to say this, Robert De Niro can spout some BS and then make violent films that propagate violent culture.

  32. dcblogger

    Debtor’s’ prisons are back, baby! Something that was outlawed in the United States in the 1800s is making a sneaky comeback. It happens when people locked up in jail are being charged for their time in the criminal justice system. Then they come out with a bill that they probably can’t pay back. So the government puts them back in jail because they can’t pay.

  33. Savita

    ‘Injections do not confer immunity and therefore do not meet the definition of a vaccine.’
    ‘Submissions from the recent 6th Circuit Court case on vaccination. A highly recommended read..[includes] motion for leave to file Amicus Curiae brief & brief of America’s Frontline Doctors as Amicus Curiae in the sixth circuit court of the United States.’

  34. lance ringquist

    Free Trade, War and Debt: All Branches of the Same Tree

    by Geraldine Perry / June 30th, 2017

    “The American colonists understood this in a very visceral way. For example, Benjamin Franklin once remarked that there are only three ways a nation can become wealthy. (1) It can engage in war and war profiteering. (2) It can reap unearned profits through exploitation of wage and price differentials, under cover of “free” trade. OR (3) It can create new, earned wealth through a balanced domestic exchange economy.”

    this is why tariffs, duties, excise taxes and taxes and the regulation of commerce, inside the country, as well as outside of our borders is in article one, section eight of the constitution. nafta billy clinton committed treason.

  35. kareninca

    “The Israeli government has agreed to a deal with US-based biotech company Novavax to buy five million COVID-19 vaccine doses, the Health Ministry announced on Friday.
    The doses, expected to arrive in Israel over the next few months, are yet to receive a nod of approval from the US Food and Drug Administration. As part of the deal, Israel has the option to purchase an extra five million doses.”

    That is a lot of doses. Does anyone have an idea what this might mean for Israel’s vaccination plans?

  36. drumlin woodchuckles

    About the goal dumm omicron olympics . . . . fork the athletes if they don’t like the protocols. If they don’t like it, they don’t have to go.

  37. Wukchumni

    It’s hard not to love the historic Woolworth’s in downtown Bakersfield — especially the building’s crown jewel, the last original Woolworth’s luncheonette in America.

    The 1950s-era diner with its chrome and red vinyl chairs, its black-and-white checkerboard floor and its extra-long counter, is a nostalgic treasure that attracts customers from across town, across America and around the world.

    Last Woolworth luncheonette in the USA!

    Don’t they still have Woolworth’s in Aussie?

    1. The Rev Kev

      The two big supermarkets chains in Oz are Woolworths and Coles but I have never seen anything like that diner. If you look close enough, I think that that is a soda jerk in the background. But how can people eat in peace without a dozen TVs on the walls blaring away in the background with CNN, MSNBC & Fox? /sarc

  38. The Rev Kev

    “A 19-year-old built a flight-tracking Twitter bot. Elon Musk tried to pay him to stop.”

    For some reason, Silicon Valley billionaires don’t like it when you use technology to track them. It’s not supposed to be that way.

    1. ChrisRUEcon

      Not only that, but Musk is such a miserly scum-bucket. Musk claims to be sooooo much in fear for his own life, but goes silent for $50K. Hahahahahaha! His own life isn’t worth that much to him. Shoot Musk into the sun … Ugh!

  39. Jason Boxman

    With deep disappointment, I have to report that my glasses fog completely with my US Masks and my Gerson duckbills. With the latter, a cloth mask & a mask badger all together form enough of a seal that my glasses do not fog and I’m somewhat breathless and uncomfortable. I think this combination is the best seal. I’m still waiting on my 3M Auras.

    I’m curious which respirations give medical professionals damaged and chaffed skin, because those are the ones I want. So far I haven’t found any that cut into my skin. Anything less seems ineffective.

    Stay safe!

    1. SES

      I wear swimmers’ nose clips with my mask, as it’s the only way I’ve found to stop my glasses from fogging.

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