Links 2/3/2022

A note from dcblogger:

From National Nurses United:
Leave a Valentine’s Day message at CVS
For months, we’ve been organizing together across the country to call on CVS Health to cut ties with the Partnership for America’s Health Care Future — the largest anti-Medicare for All front group that exists today. And our Valentine’s Day request to CVS is simple: quit breaking our hearts by blocking Medicare for All.

Monica Vitti, ‘Queen of Italian Cinema,’ Dies at 90 New York Times (J-LS)

Weather predicting Milltown Mel dies just before Groundhog Day Fox5NY (J-LS). An omen….

Secrets of Early Animal Evolution Revealed by Chromosome ‘Tectonics’ Quanta (Kevin W)

Scientists Engineer New Material That Can Absorb and Release Enormous Amounts of Energy PhysOrg

What’s So Hard About Understanding Consciousness? Nautilus (David L)

Ulysses at 100: why Joyce was so obsessed with the perfect blue cover The Conversation (J-LS)

Mall Customers Shop for New Hips or Knees as Surgery Centers Fill Store Vacancies Wall Street Journal (J-LS). Anyone who goes this route needs their head examined. Knee replacements have a not great success rate as it is.

Does Quitting Smoking Increase Obesity? Evidence From Accounting for Misreporting NBER (resilc). The plural of anecdote is not data, but my middle brother, who was once the fittest of the three of us, is now over 400 lbs and attributes his weight gain to quitting smoking. He went from being a compulsive smoker to a compulsive eater.


The Coronavirus Will Surprise Us Again Atlantic (David L)

Freedom Convoy: GoFundMe pauses donations to Canada truckers BBC


The Investigation of Pulmonary Abnormalities using Hyperpolarised Xenon Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Patients with Long-COVID MedRxIv. Note previously discussed here but absent link to study.

Omicron Is Receding, but New Variants Are Coming. This Algorithm Will Help us Keep Up SpectrumIEEE (David L). Help me. An algo would never have predicted Omicron.


A Chief Physician on the Perils of Germany’s Omicron Strategy Der Spiegel (resilc)


A Normal Supply Chain? It’s ‘Unlikely’ in 2022. New York Times

UAE, Saudi Business Conditions Lose Momentum as Covid-19 Weighs Bloomberg


Climate change has likely begun to suffocate the world’s fisheries ScienceDaily (Kevin W). Selfishly, I will miss fish.

Scotland Plants Millions of Trees Along Rivers to Save Wild Salmon From the Heat EcoWatch (David L)

The Oyster Tongers of Apalachicola Bay Are Losing Their Way of Life Esquire (resilc)

Coming soon: Climate lockdowns? The Hill

Global warming causing early plant blooms DW (resilc). They are waking up to this only now? Plants and flowering trees started being one month ahead of the old normal in Alabama in about 2017.

Delhi’s rich bird diversity highlights the importance of small urban wetlands in Indian cities Scroll (J-LS)


Philippine frontrunner Marcos favors China over US Asia Times

Is the Future of the Persian Gulf Chinese? National Interest


In Heated Meeting, India Seeks Tougher Action From US Tech Giants On Fake News The Wire (J-LS)

‘With Budget 2022-23, Govt Has Once Again Failed Millions of Rural Citizens’: NREGA Sangharsh Mocha The Wire (J-LS)


Northern Ireland minister orders halt to Brexit agri-food checks Guardian (Kevin W)

Old Blighty

Met officer was promoted despite misconduct over sexist and racist messages Guardian. Kevin W:

Cressida Dick is a protected member of the establishment who was groomed from the get-go. First heard of her in connection with the killing of that innocent Brazilian guy in a London tube station because they thought he might possible have been a terrorist – and so get several rounds into his head from point blank range as he was held down. And Dick was in charge of that operation.

New Cold War

The West’s two replies, just a few disjointed thoughts The Saker (Chuck L). The docs in English:

Leaked drafts of NATO, US responses to Russia are surprisingly revealing Responsible Statecraft (Colonel Smithers). Subhead ouch: “Have you ever heard the saying, ‘you should talk to the organ grinder, not his monkey’?”

Putin, Put’n, and Peace in Ukraine Quincy Institute (Colonel Smithers)

Gopnik Wars: Donbass Edition YouTube. Resilc: “Makes complete sense to start a nuke war with Russia over this prize region so essential to my wellbeing as a USA USA citizen.”

In the Line of Eternal Fire: Ukraine’s Nuclear Reactors CounterPunch

Russia crisis exacerbates US political divisions The Hill

Inside The Russian Tax Havens Set Up By Putin To Help Sanctioned Billionaires Forbes. Resilc: “Sort of like Delaware and Wyoming in USA USA”


US to send destroyer, fighter jets to UAE amid Houthi attacks Al Jazeera. Resilc: “We just are getting set up to being beat by little guys in sandals with AK47s once again. We never learn.”

A New Drug That Contains Meth and Heroin Is on the Rise in Afghanistan Vice (resilc)

Big Brother is Watching You Watch

Me on App Store Monopolies and Security Bruce Schneier (David L)

FBI Confirms It Obtained NSO’s Pegasus Spyware Guardian

Imperial Collapse Watch

A deepfreeze is coming to Texas, and no one knows if the power grid is ready ars technica

Sex, lies and trade deals: how a businessman bribed half the US navy RT (JTM)

Surprise: China COMPETES bill is boon for military spending Responsible Statecraft (resilc)


Biden Moves To Block Student Debt Victory Daily Poster. The Dems deserve midterm slaughter for this alone.

Biden nominee faces scrutiny over fintech work, compensation The Hill

AOC insists it’s no ‘mystery’ Congress won’t ban members from trading stock Daily Mail (J-LS)

Democrats en déshabillé

Democrats Can Win the Pennsylvania Senate Seat—if They Don’t Slaughter One Another First New Republic (resilc)

GOP Clown Car

Republicans to field more than 100 far-right candidates this year Guardian

Our Famously Free Press

Spotify spat shows why Joe Rogan and his podcast matter Financial Times

David Crosby, Graham Nash and Stephen Stills ask to pull their content from Spotify NPR (David L)

Police State Watch

Does prison reduce crime? Yes, obviously Ed West

Facebook shares plunge more than 20% on weak earnings, big forecast miss CNBC (Kevin W)

Sen. Tester’s bill gives farmers ‘right to repair’ Farm Progress (J-LS)

The Bezzle

The “right to repair” movement grows, but the devil’s in the details Stacey on IoT (J-LS)

Tesla recalls cars that may roll past stop signs BBC (David L)

Tesla drivers report a surge in ‘phantom braking’ MSN (resilc)

Musk: Robots to be bigger business than Tesla cars BBC. Resilc: “Failing on cars, and crashing on the moon, let’s move on to the next failure…….all a con for sci fi fans.”

A new study has some surprising findings on car fires Popular Science

‘Building back worse’: Wisconsin’s fight over the production of USPS vehicles Guardian

Why Is Matt Damon Shilling For Crypto? New York Times. Because actors perform for money. Look at all of the smiling bouncy actors in drug ads, fer Chrissakes. And then cognitive research has also shown that people start to believe in causes they tout, even when they know otherwise (the research is on lawyers are defending clients they know are guilty…). All sorts of A list actors make embarrassing commercials in Japan because the money is really good and they are guaranteed to stay in Japan. And Mike Huckabee now touts OTC sleep aids and Newt Gingrich, some sort of “anti title theft” product on cable TV. As Churchill famously said, “Madam, we’ve already established that [what kind of woman you are]. Now we are haggling about the price.”

Guillotine Watch

Historic Bridge May Be Dismantled for Jeff Bezos’ Big, Beautiful Boat Gizmodo

Class Warfare

Manufacturing job losses particularly devastating for Black workers Economic Policy Institute

New York Times Confronts Labor Strife as Tech Workers Push to Organize Wall Street Journal

Traffic Fines Should Be Higher for Rich People Atlantic (resilc)

U.S. drug firm ex-CEO convicted of steering opioids to ‘dirty doctors’ Reuters

Antidote du jour. Tracie H: “Sphynxie after a long hard day of watching out the window.”

And a bonus:

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. skippy

    This thing is making the rounds and I can only imagine how IM Doc, GM, and others hear at NC think about it, but wait there is more –

    Steve H. Hanke

    Tags Money and BanksMoney and Banking

    Works Published inThe Free MarketMises Daily Article
    Contact Steve H. HankeTwitter

    Steve H. Hanke is a Professor of Applied Economics and Founder & Co-Director of The Johns Hopkins Institute for Applied Economics, Global Health, and the Study of Business Enterprise. He is a Senior Fellow and Director of the Troubled Currencies Project at the Cato Insitute, a contributor at National Review, a well-known currency reformer, and a currency and commodity trader.

    Prof. Hanke served on President Reagan’s Council of Economic Advisers, has been an adviser to five foreign heads of state and five foreign cabinet ministers, and held a cabinet-level rank in both Lithuania and Montenegro. He has been awarded seven honorary doctorate degrees, and is an Honorary Professor at four foreign institutions. He was President of Toronto Trust Argentina in Buenos Aires in 1995, when it was the world’s best-performing mutual fund. Currently, he serves as Chairman of the Supervisory Board of Advanced Metallurgical Group N.V. in Amsterdam.

    In 1998, he was named one of the twenty-five most influential people in the world by World Trade Magazine In 2020, Prof. Hanke was named a “Knight of the Order of the Flag” by Albanian President Ilir Meta.

    And yes the Usual freedom sorts are vibrating in unison …

    1. GM

      This is just the typical for economics decision-based evidence making BS — make assumptions and definitions that fit your agenda, then draw the conclusions you want based on that fake foundation.

      The US only ever had what is properly called “mockdowns”, and quite a few states never had any real restrictions.

      Europe had a few proper lockdowns in Spain and Italy, but after 2020 it was mostly mockdowns too.

      Real lockdowns is what you have in China, and what they did in Melbourne in 2020.

      Did those have no impact?

      1. GM

        Oh, and BTW, that wasn’t even peer reviewed. Take a look:

        About the Series
        The Studies in Applied Economics series is under the general direction of Prof. Steve H. Hanke,
        Founder and Co-Director of The Johns Hopkins Institute for Applied Economics, Global Health,
        and the Study of Business Enterprise ( The views expressed in each working
        paper are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the institutions that the authors are
        affiliated with.

        So Steve Hanke authored the paper and then published it where he is the editor.

      2. Basil Pesto

        and like I said in the post yesterday, if you boil it down, lockdowns, done properly (ie not mockdowns), are essentially quarantine. If you’re arguing after, what, thousands of years of evidence to the contrary that lockdowns don’t halt the spread of contagious disease, then you’re making a crazy argument on a par with flat-earth or geocentrism. It’s just such an obviously bullshit paper produced for a transparently propagandistic purpose.

        1. PlutoniumKun

          I couldn’t even bring myself to go through it when I saw it first – papers like that are like wading through sewage without waders because the only thing those sort of economists are good at is hiding their unsupported assumptions within their ‘research’. I’m glad someone else did it for me.

        2. Brian Beijer

          I do wonder if there’s maybe a kernel of truth in what the lockdown denialists are saying. We’ve seen several research articles on NC suggesting that the airborne transmission of Covid allows it to go through air vents, pass between different apartments across hallways, and (if I remember correctly) even travel through sewage exhaust pipes between apartment dwellings. Without recognition and action taken to reduce ventilation problems, then large numbers of people living in urban environments could still be infected by Covid even during a lockdown. As I said, it’s a kernel of truth, but I agree with your assessment that their argument is bullshit.

          1. GM

            The Chinese are fully aware of that issue, which is why they are building quarantine centers with detached units for international arrivals (hotel quarantine leaks because of airborne transmission between rooms).

            And when there is a local outbreak, people are sent to quarantine, not left at home. Because there’s pretty much nobody in Chinese cities who does not live in high-rise apartment buildings, and vertical transmission is well documented (it is currently a serious problem in Hong Kong).

            But guess what? Then you have Western media showing videos of people being bussed to quarantine centers and then of the “metal boxes” there and crying out loud how this is the new incarnation of the Holocaust, even though it is precisely the scientifically informed approach to containing an outbreak (the “metal boxes” are a way to ensure that there is no shared air between individuals in quarantine, and they can be put up, moved and removed quickly and as necessary)

            The West is absolutely (family blog)-ed at for the foreseeable future. The virus has adapted, and will likely adapt even further, making it much harder to contain, meanwhile the brainwashing of the population is so advanced that now you have large segments of the population that are actively cheering for the spread of the virus. There is no avoiding the next few rounds of infection of the whole population at this point. What world will that leave us in in terms of the mental and physical state of the population after that?

            1. Skunk

              I have never understood why people wouldn’t put up with restrictions to achieve a low level of infection. As you say, GM, the West (and particularly the US) are blank-ed. I wonder if historically the poor pandemic-related decisions by the US will be seen as the inflection point for US power. The stupidity of our response has been breathtaking…quite literally.

    2. chris

      Yeah… all the COVID isn’t real people where I live started posting that paper on every platform and forum I belong to. Never mind how specious the analysis is or how stupid the conclusions are given we have obvious examples of places where the lockdown controls they list in the paper did work. Such as in Japan. I’d rather no one have died from COVID but if I have to choose I’ll take the roughly 20k dead in Japan instead of our close to 1 million dead in the US.

      I did try to talk to some of the deniers about this and was told by multiple people that you can’t control viruses. As has been referred to on this site many times it’s amazing how the joint sacrifice we made during WWII, and the efforts we put into eradicating small pox have been completely memory-holed. It’s clear our elites don’t want the public to consider what used to be possible for government in this context.

      I’m waiting for what I assume will be the final act for this farce. The people behind it will blame Trump for the ineffective lockdowns and cement a bias in government and the public that containment policy for pandemics is something we shouldn’t do again. Madness.

    3. OliverN

      I’ve skimmed it (62 pages ughgh) and from what I can tell it ignores the Australian and New Zealand lockdowns? So that means it’s a report about the effectiveness of lockdowns, but then it excludes the most successful lockdowns and then unsurprisingly comes to the conclusion that lockdowns aren’t effective. It’s kind of like doing a study of “what’s the fastest speed someone can run” but then ignoring Usain Bolt and Olympians in general.

      I’m hoping that someone will do a proper takedown of this study, but I also hate that someone has to in the first place. It’s already being circulated to crowds who already have the conclusion that they refuse lockdown no matter what (so any debate is disingenuous), and if you want to point out the holes you have to go over the whole 62 page thing and write out a decent response that holds under criticism.

      1. Basil Pesto

        Yes, to debunk it at length would be to miss the point as the original paper is clearly a bad faith undertaking. The point is to make something sciencey looking (they are economists after all) from a big institution and get it out into the press to be picked up by sympathetic media outlets for them to disseminate to a captive audience who will like + share on social media and day “lockdowns don’t work. here’s The Paper. Johns Hopkins. QED.” And it’ll probably work.

        1. GM

          It cannot be debunked, that’s the beauty of it.

          To do that, you usually write a rebuttal to the journal. But Hanke is the editor of the journal and the author of the paper.

          So good luck getting a rebuttal published there.

          Meanwhile it will be cited for years as a “peer-reviewed academic study in a prestigious journal showed that lockdowns don’t work”

          Nice, isn’t it?

        1. Even keel

          The violence they do to language is extraordinary. The word “lockdown” has a meaning in ordinary language. Most people think it means something like quarantine.

          But the paper defines it differently. That’s all:

          “The team said it evaluated “any government mandate that directly restrict peoples’ possibilities, such as policies that limit internal movement, close schools and businesses, and ban international travel.””

          So, it evaluated a temporary closure of a business the same as an actual lockdown. Any sort of restriction, no matter how slight or hole-filled (like the Canadian truck border thing that is farcical) and say that is a lockdown for purposes of the paper.

          That’s it. That’s the trick.

          1. skippy

            Well versed in this territory from decades ago whilst watching and listening to various doctrinaire tribes play dialectal pot luck bingo with each other in slow-mo. Then as that was not punishing enough I had the audacity to start reading ream deep economic white papers from orthodox and just to burn my eyes fully out some AET deepthunkit …

            Yet it was all worth it just to get that intrinsic nose for the deductive a priori axioms hidden under all the bad maths and physics or prose post suspension of disbelief with a side of post reinforcement e.g. trumps ***but you knew that*** shtick.

            Per se in this case the term ‘restrict peoples’ ***possibilities*** just refers to the basic AET cornerstone of ***individual[tm] potential*** stolen by the state/government within a mindset that time is money e.g. your time is stolen and with it its potential.

            Basically Von Hanke could have dismissed with all the self goal seeking and just said Praxeology – !!!!! – and then do a mic drop …

            Did any one tell him to or did he read Mandell’s book on Infectious Diseases, under stand T cell issues, covids evolutionary potential, social psychology applicable to epidemics, I mean its like hes pushing VaR out 10 years and wants cookie for reinforcing all mindset that actually diminished everyone’s future plus its cost here and now.

    4. Mike

      Some things written on Frank Fenner who was a leader in the eradication of small pox:

      ” To eradicate smallpox, each outbreak had to be stopped from spreading, by isolation of cases and vaccination of everyone who lived close by.[111] This process is known as “ring vaccination”. The key to this strategy was the monitoring of cases in a community (known as surveillance) and containment.”

      “An intensive surveillance and containment and vaccination program was undertaken in these countries in early and mid-1977, under the direction of Australian microbiologist Frank Fenner. As the campaign neared its goal, Fenner and his team played an important role in verifying eradication.”

      Seems to be containment has worked before!

  2. Larry

    As Lambert posted in the Water Cooler yesterday, Spotify has a Joe Rogan problem because he is the sole identifiable face of the entire company. Spotify has no right to music, which is it’s most popular product and subject to total loss. I saw plenty of tweets over jumping ship from Spotify to Apple and finding some package Apple offered up as being far more attractive than what Spotify has.

    Because Rogan is synonymous with the Spotify brand, artists rightly see leaving the platform as fortifying their brand. It’s not that being on Apple, Amazon, or Pandora is better per se, but those platforms can’t be tied to a single polarizing figure. For all the money that Spotify tossed around on podcasts, it seems like a limited success if Rogan is their only notable figure. That means that Rogan has to play by PR rules and stay within acceptable boundaries so the whole Spotify ship doesn’t take on too much water and sink.

    And the Twitter sphere goes on and on about how dangerous this is for free speech, which is nonsense. This is marketing and branding. Spotify paid Rogan to draw paying customers and say something about their brand. If it blows up their brand in a serious way they’ll dump him.

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      Have you ever even listened to Rogan? I suggest you read the FT column on him, which basically says he’s a great interviewer and responded to the controversy well. Lambert, who seems to listen mainly to history podcasts, also listened to Rogan and found Rogan was extremely well prepared and ran rings around his interviewee (some sort of Ivy League professor) when Rogan was not trying to gotcha him or making him look bad. It was just that the subject clearly thought he could dial it in with Rogan and found out otherwise.

      1. Mr Magoo

        I didn’t read Larry’s comment as a ding on Rogan. Larry seems to be highlighting the risks Spotify has gotten itself into when one of its podcasters (Rogan) has gotten so big as to personify the brand, and that podcaster can be controversial.

        IMHO Rogan is popular because he is open to ideas, brings together differing viewpoints and doesn’t just feed his audience a narrative.

        1. Louis Fyne

          Ironically Joe Rogan would be “mainstream left” if this was 2005.

          Rogan is a secular humanist, honestly questions Establishment narratives and is pro-free speech.

          everyone should give rogan a try. his old interviews are free on youtube. he was everyone from Russell Brand to Edward Snowden.

          1. Roger

            Probably a Rockefeller Republican in the 1970s! Lets remember that Nixon gave the US OSHA, the EPA and Title IX! Those were the days, when even a complete asshole Republican did some good things.

            I do find Rogan to be a very good interviewer, lets people actually finish a thought process while still pushing back (politely) on BS.

            1. lance ringquist

              IKE type also, who raised taxes on the wealthy, refused to do in FDR’s new deal, and refused to reverse Trumans trade protections, ike bragged that under his leadership, unionization expanded, did the national freeway system, and started nasa programs.

          2. Val

            Rogan interviews I have heard are reminiscent of those of Studs Terkel. He lets the guest speak and he actively listens, which almost no one is capable of these days. That makes a product very different from the stage-managed psych- & sales operations that constitute the familiar offerings from consolidated media. The Snowden and McCollough interviews are both very good examples.

            Most problematic is that Rogan models an intact human being thinking for themselves. This cannot be encouraged. Such people must never be tolerated.

      2. PlutoniumKun

        Rogans interview with Bari Weiss is a classic in his ability to demolish BS without actually directly challenging his interviewer. Its well with a look.

        Unfortunately, he can be very credulous on a lot of topics, but he isn’t intimidated by credentials and isn’t afraid to ask stupid questions, which I think makes him unique.

        1. Pelham

          That gets it exactly right. As a former journalist (apologies to all) I can barely listen to interviews in the mainstream as all too often the interviewers appear bound to avoid asking obvious questions. I suppose this is one feature of access journalism.

          Rogan, OTOH, does ask these questions. Routinely. Sounds like faint praise, but it isn’t at all. This plus the extraordinary fact that he’ll spend two uninterrupted hours or considerably more with a guest and on topic accounts, I think, for a good deal of his popularity. And as noted in other comments, I found his gracious response to the recent criticism worthy of a true gentleman.

      3. Potato Guy

        I listen to Rogan often. The variety of guests are remarkable. Most guests are quite interesting. He is a “regular Joe” whom so many people can relate too. It was just a matter of time before the wokesters tried to cancel him. He really brings something useful to the arena. Mainstream media is dead. Long live the bloggers and podcasters.

        1. Michael Ismoe

          David Crosby, Graham Nash and Stephen Stills ask to pull their content from Spotify

          Just how many “Salutes to 1973” does Spotify do? Have they put out any new music since Nixon was bombing Cambodia?

          1. Henry Moon Pie

            Hey now. I’ve lost about 15% of my playlists over this. Some of these folks were once radicals (also Whoopi), but in their dotage, they’ve become full-blown libs.

            Will Jackson Browne and Bonnie Raitt be next? I hope Jackson knows better, but who knows?

            I don’t have to worry about Morrison, Hendrix or Prine though.

          2. QuicksilverMessenger

            CSN have now pulled their music from Spotify along with Y? Now there is a coalition that will stick together thru thick and thin

      4. Larry

        My point certainly wasn’t that Rogan isn’t worth listening to or doesn’t give good interviews. Rather he is Spotify’s sole distinguishing brand and too identifiable with it. That’s a major risk given Rogan’s guests and some of his beliefs. There are plenty of controversial podcasts out there, but none so identifiable with a single brand. Rogan was plenty profitable when he wasn’t on a single platform, but he chose to hitch his wagon to Spotify. That has consequences. It’s the same as an athlete choosing to endorse Nike. They have now given up the right to say whatever they want about Nike.

        I don’t listen to his podcast because I find them to be too long with too many uninteresting guests. I’m sure Rogan is very good at what he does, it just doesn’t interest me nor do I have time to give it a listen.

        1. Jonathan Holland Becnel

          Bernies not intersting???


          Glenn Greenwald???


          By Jove, who IS interesting to you???

          1. urdsama

            To be fair, I think Rogan has interviewed hundreds of people by this point.

            Even if 30% of the people were interesting, I wouldn’t bother either.

      5. Nate

        Can you provide a link to this interview? Who was it, and what was the topic? “Ran rings around” can mean several things. Rogan very well could have Gish galloped his interviewee for all we know. I’d like to listen to this.

        Also, does being a good interviewer really mean you know your stuff? Isn’t interviewing kind of like debate; some people are very good at extemperaneous arguments and thinking on their feet?

        Just Asking Questions, here.

        1. juanholio

          I think it was an episode from several years ago, and she was asked to explain her distain for Tulsi Gabbard in more detail. After umming and ahhing she really couldn’t. There’s clips on YouTube. Sadly it didn’t derail Bari’s career of hot take mongering.

          “she appeared on an episode of the popular podcast and accused aspiring presidential candidate Tulsi Gabbard of having “monstrous ideas.” Weiss derided Gabbard as a “toadie” who supports Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, whereupon Rogan calmly asked her to define the word “toadie.” At this point, Weiss floundered like a trout out of water, suggesting she knew the definition but declining to supply one. Instead she waited for the definition (“a sycophant”) to be read aloud.

          After Weiss continued to insist that Gabbard was the “mother lode of bad ideas” without seeming to have a clear idea of why, Rogan voiced his concerns about launching unsubstantiated criticisms. In that painfully awkward exchange, Rogan dismantled an attack simply by asking basic, painfully obvious questions and politely pushing back. He wasn’t combative or insulting, just calmly skeptical.”

          1. Nikkikat

            I remember that interview, she was shown to be a sputtering fool just by asking a question that the MSM would never ask.

            1. harrybothered

              I think the word “smugnorant” was popularized after it was applied to Bari Weiss in that interview.

          2. Lambert Strether

            > In that painfully awkward exchange, Rogan dismantled an attack simply by asking basic, painfully obvious questions and politely pushing back. He wasn’t combative or insulting, just calmly skeptical.

            That’s exactly my recollection.

        2. Lambert Strether

          > Can you provide a link to this interview? Who was it, and what was the topic? “Ran rings around” can mean several things. Rogan very well could have Gish galloped his interviewee for all we know. I’d like to listen to this.

          The interviewee was a Yale professor who had written a book, and was obviously on Rogan to hawk it. That’s fine, everybody has to eat, but Rogan’s questions showed that he’d at least cracked the book (unusual!) and he asked good, reasonable questions that revealed the interviewee’s knowledge of the topic was shallow.

          I don’t remember the topic; I think it was Covid, since everything is Covid these days, but it wasn’t from the political side of the topic; nothing about drugs, treatments, or anything like that. It wasn’t a gotcha interview at all.

          Since I don’t listen to Rogan regularly, I can’t dig out the link, so you’ll just have to take my word that (a) I know what a Gish Gallop is, (b) didn’t see it in this case, (c) would have had a very negative reaction if I did see and, and that (d) I was struck by the disparity in quality between Rogan’s questions and the Yale dude’s answer. “This Rogan guy is no fool, and not a crank, either” was my takeaway. (The advertising, I recall, was for bidets, which was pretty amazing.)

          1. Ed S.

            Your last paragraph is a great summary of Rogan. He has an almost “Columbo” approach – he just asks thoughtful questions in a very “aw, shucks” manner. Unlike so many “interviewers” who are clearly out to attack and destroy their target (see, for example the Reddit antiwork moderator just the other day), Rogan simply let’s his interviewees talk. And in their talking they frequently demonstrate that they (a) don’t know what they’re talking about notwithstanding their credentials and convictions and are simply reciting talking points (cf. Bari Weiss of Columbia/WSJ/NYT and “toady”) , or (b) they are dancing around the truth (JR and Dr. Sanjay Gupta from CNN on IVM)

            Challenging our credentialed PMC regarding the narrative is simply not to be tolerated irrespective of the topic. The narrative is the only thing that’s left as there aren’t any real accomplishments to point to. If the “vaccines” worked as President Biden said (paraphrased – if you’re vaccinated you can’t get COVID), why would anyone be concerned about “fake news” that they don’t work? Is there “fake news / fact checking” when people say the earth is flat? Or the sun revolves around the earth?

            Rogan punches holes in the prevailing narrative easily and it’s why he is a danger. Was the Spotify deal intended to control him? If it was, it’s not working very well.

            1. Angie Neer

              Lambert very kindly responded to your question with the knowledge he has, and he pointed out the limitations in his knowledge. I hope you don’t think he owes you more than that, or indeed anything.

              1. Nate

                Why is he shilling for Rogan? What relationship to Rogan could he be hiding?

                Also, I found this quote somewhere: “I’m a f*cking moron. I’m a cage fighting commentator who’s a dirty stand up comedian and I just told you I’m drunk most of the time and I do testosterone and I smoke a lot of weed. I’m not a respected source of information even for me.” And this one: “When people tell you who they are…

                Just asking questions here, just trying to have a conversation.

                1. Angie Neer

                  Oh, please…”just asking questions”. How about contributing to the discussion in the form of a statement of fact or your own opinion about the issue at hand, not “throwing your drink in your host’s face” as mentioned in the site policies.

                2. Yves Smith Post author

                  You can go to hell. First a snide attack, now an overt one, with an absolutely ludicrous as well as offensive allegation. You try jailbreaking and I will rip out your entire comments history here.

                3. Lambert Strether

                  > What relationship to Rogan could he be hiding?

                  Well, Joe — I call him “Joe” — did buy me that Leica M10-R I’ve always wanted… (“/s”, for those as challenged as “Nate”).

                  > Just asking questions here

                  This phrase is so well-known to be a whopping sign of bad faith I’m almost convinced it’s parody. But not entirely. I hope you find the happiness you seek. Elsewhere

      6. JCC

        Yves, I agree wholehearedly. His long form interviews can be very interesting and as some others have pointed out, he is about the only interviewer who, if called out on a questionable statement he makes, will immediately fact check himself and freely admit when he is wrong about something.

        What really surprises me more than anything about CSN&Y is that these four were famous for questioning the status quo and blatant commercialism back in the late 60’s and early 70’s, heroes for many of us with songs like “Ohio” and “Deja Vu” and now they are supporting censorship. And I have serious doubts as to whether they have even listened to any of the interviews they are complaining about.

        1. jonboinAR

          I’ll say what I said about Young. They’re just 3 old goofs. No one would pay them any mind except that they’re pretty foundational in rock and roll, as is Mr Young. That, however, doesn’t qualify any of them to opine on anything else, as we have seen.

          1. ArvidMartensen

            You don’t need to have qualifications to have an opinion. On anything.This is an autocratic idea that is gaining hold as in “you are not entitled to your opinion”. And I say, Oh Yes You Are. It is part of being human to have an opinion.
            Of course, your opinion could be complete and utter b*shit. And then I have the right to give you my opinion of what I think is true, with robust evidence if I can find some.
            I once was in a community organisation which was going to the wall. The qualified accountant on the committee said we were viable. I looked at the figures and said we weren’t (no accounting quals but more common sense). We went to the wall soon after.
            Quals don’t necessarily mean anything in the real world.
            Heresy shouted all the qualified!!!

            1. Yves Smith Post author

              Sorry but merely having an opinion is not on here. If we tolerated that, every stupid bot and True Believer would run rampant in the comments section.

              Please consult our house rules, under our Polices tab. You have consented to them by commenting.

              The paramount rule:

              When in doubt, consider this quote as a guideline:

              You are not entitled to your opinion. You are entitled to your informed opinion. No one is entitled to be ignorant.

              -Harlan Ellison

      7. skippy


        Would you go on Rogan – ???? – I double dare you … open platform style and let it roll ….

          1. skippy

            Groan now you did it …

            OK currant Qld’er house in Indooroopilly behind St Peters School at my job is a lovely couple that lived the years of their 70s duration, just dripping in the good stuff to a fault. The Husband and I got talking and the next thing you know he offers me an old CD of The Money Masters. He even said at one time he respected Milton, knows better now.

            Then we had convos about MMT and PKE, shook hands at the end because there was respect on both sides due to them seeing the works done and the ethical forbearance first and foremost.

            This is how reality is shaped …

        1. Yves Smith Post author

          I’d be game but no one asks me to do anything any more :-(

          The old Groucho Marx saying started applying to TV and me a while back: “I won’t join any clubs that will have me.” I was only getting invited on really tertiary cables shows with crappy remote studio lighting. So I’d have to spend all this time prepping and putting on TV makeup (very gross, hooker level liner required to look human) and getting there >15 mins early for maybe 3 mins of TV. And I’d look haggard due to the poor quality of the studio set up. Not worth it.

          1. skippy

            Yeah I saw it all and remember but it would be a hoot and a keeper …

            Who knows I might just drop a line to Joe and suggest he get some economists and those that critique them on as it sets the stage for everything else he bangs on about. Always examining the results baked in without digging into the roots of the dramas.

          2. skippy

            BTW you always have looked hot and the frontal lobes is just a bonus …. own it … and rock it … I would not have you any other way …

    2. Katniss Everdeen

      Because Rogan is synonymous with the Spotify brand, artists rightly see leaving the platform as fortifying their brand.

      So they “fortify their brand” by leaving Spotify for amazon where jeff effing bezos is “synonymous with the brand”???

      Or apple, where foxconn suicide nets and modern day slave labor are “synonymous with the brand”????

      Yeah, let’s crucify Rogan for talking about Ivermectin with Robert Malone and Spotify for letting him have his say. THAT must not be tolerated.

      As for that drug and booze pickled POS, neil young, it’s a damn good thing his older self wasn’t around in the 60’s or we might never have heard what HE had to say:

      Tin soldiers and Nixon’s comin’.
      We’re finally on our own.
      This summer I hear the drummin’.
      Four dead in Ohio.

      Give. Me. A. Break.

      1. Katniss Everdeen

        Kinda screwed that quote up but you get the idea.

        BTW, the next verse is:

        Gotta get down to it.
        Soldiers are gunning us down.
        Should have been done long ago.
        What if you knew her and
        Found her dead on the ground?
        How can you run when you know?

        Kinda sounds like insurrection to me.

        1. Henry Moon Pie

          Thanks for making that point. “Four Dead in Ohio,” whose lyrics I’ve always believed came mostly from Young, is right up there with “We Can Be Together” and “Volunteers” from the Airplane. Think of Stills’s “Treetop Flyer” as another thumb in the eye of the Establishment.

          But age and money, a duo hard to resist, have transformed them into brainwashed Libs.

          1. Mel

            I was wondering this afternoon — people making a fortune off a monopoly on public health cast a different shadow from the ones who were making a fortune off a monopoly on destructive weapons. Would have a greater appeal to old hippies. That whole band is off spotify now, isn’t it?
            Say “for the children” and you get the writer of Candy Mountain in the palm of your hand.

          2. jonboinAR

            At least Dylan frankly admitted (I think he did, didn’t he?) that his protest songs were mainly about selling music.

        2. doug

          The guard had the guns and pulled the triggers that left 4 unarmed kids dead in Ohio. Not an insurrection. A description of cold blooded murder.

            1. Carolinian

              I’m sure he’s quite well off, however much it is. I believe he owns a farm in his retirement if he is retired.

      2. Larry

        I made that point already. I said Apple and Amazon have their own problems. No question. But now with his exclusive deal Spotify=Rogan. It’s a cheap and easy win for an artist like Neil Young to protest what Rogan says by pulling their music from one platform. Prior to exclusivoty, you could get Rogan on any platform which means no one company was tacitly backing and endorsing him. Make no mistake, that’s what his exclusive deal means.

        I don’t begrudge Rogan his right to say what he wants, but by tying hinself so tightly to Spotify, he has to play by different rules. There are boundaries to what he can say and who he can host. He’s running into those boundaries now and his apology is indicative of that.

        1. HotFlash

          I understand that Mr. Rogan has a nice contract with Spotify, which would, I assume, generate a large payout to Mr. Rogan if breached by Spotify. Some tongue-in-cheek speculation here, by Dylan Ratigan on Breaking Points (0.00 to 1.07). Is he wrong?

      3. Keith Newman

        @Katniss @9:42
        Sorry for this but what is a POS? I looked it up and there are dozens of possibilities including Point of Service, Person of Suspicion, etc, etc!

    3. Carolinian

      Surely the main point here is whether ancient celebrities should be throwing their weight around on a subject about which they have no useful knowledge. To the extent people want to take sides then the topic here is censorship, not Covid. Greenwald, in his recent piece, said he wouldn’t be at all surprised if Spotify caved. If they do then that’s yet another sad comment on our culture and the celebrities who support it.

      1. juanholio

        Why does conservative cancel culture hate it so much when folks like Young use their right to free speech and protest, in order to make statements on matters that are important to them?

        If you don’t like it, just ignore him.

        1. Carolinian

          You have a gift for missing the point (or is just getting me to reply that is the object?)

          Young is trying to cancel Rogan, not vice versa. Do pay attention.

          1. juanholio

            I know Rogan isn’t, but as I am sure you know full well, your conservative echo chamber is.

            Is Young not entitled to non violent protest if he feels he has been forced into a position that goes against his principals?

        2. RockHard

          I have no idea why anyone is tagging this as free speech. Neil Young owns the copyright to his work (I presume or he’d have no power to pull it from Spotify) and he can do what he wants. Is control of your work not a part of free speech? Prince used to intentionally block streaming services from playing his music. AC/DC and Bob Seeger were famously late, mostly because they didn’t see the point in putting in the work to make it available on the streaming services.

          Where was the outrage on NC when Taylor Swift yanked her music from Spotify over royalty rates?

          Ah, yeah, royalty rates. That’s where we get down to it. This is about money. Musicians see where they rank in the world when Spotify throws $100M + at Rogan. I wouldn’t be surprised if Spotify pays more to Rogan than they do in all their music royalty payments. I’m certain Neil Young doesn’t miss the few bucks a month he’s getting, and it’s probably done more to sell his CDs and digital media than he’s done in 20 years.

          Spotify is not worried about losing musicians, and TBH I’m surprised that bands like Rage Against The Machine and Pearl Jam haven’t loudly jumped on board. Now, if the Obamas cancel their podcast deals, or Ezra Klein pulls his podcast, Spotify has a problem.

          Meanwhile, over at SiriusXM, a formerly controversial and sometimes very good interviewer named Howard Stern wishes that he could get the attention that Rogan is currently getting.

          1. Carolinian

            I believe the initial statement by Young implied that he would leave his music on Spotify if they would take off Rogan. Which would make it an attempt to silence Rogan.. Only after Spotify said it would not take off Rogan did he withdraw his music.

            And as reported up thread Young sold most of his catalog to Warner Brothers which agreed to do as he wished.

            1. JCC

              @Carolinian, you are correct. Despite some of the misinformation in some of the comments here, Neil Young initiated all this through actually, publicly, trying to get Spotify to ban Joe Rogan.

              Of course Young has the right (outside of contract commitments, of course) to have his music played wherever he wishes to have it played. But of all people, considering his (and former partners Crosby, Stills and Nash) obvious political stances in years past, I cannot understand his stance on demanding Joe Rogan be censored.

              I guess these four aren’t as smart in their ability to question authority as I used to think they were.

                1. jonboinAR

                  I’ve always thought Neil was very good, too. I once did a deep dive on all those guys. Apparently Stills begged Neil to join CSN. The two, having been bandmates in the Buffalo Springfield, didn’t particularly get along well, but Stills was desperate to have someone else in the band (Crosby, Stills and Nash) whom he considered an actual musician.

                1. Yves Smith Post author

                  Help me. “I just don’t want my music on there if he’s on there” is a demand. It is equivalent to “Joe Rogan needs to not be on Spotify, otherwise I will hurt you by removing my music.”

      2. urdsama

        So these people need to censor themselves to avoid…censorship? And if we are going to go by people with knowledge on a subject, them a whole mass of people need to shut up.

        In any case, no one is being censored.

        1. Pat

          Not for lack of trying.

          The only reason it isn’t happening is that Rogan is more financially important than the deluded Young and his mates to Spotify. Young thought he could issue his ultimatum and get Rogan off. Instead he had to head to Amazon, a company whose corporate culture is about employee mistreatment, false reviews and counterfeit products for its integrity.

    4. Mikel

      As of now, Neil Young, for example, has only sold 50% of his catalog to a hedge fund.
      So he still has some say over how his music is released . Many established artists have engaged in these types of deals. Will be interesting to see what happens if/when share purchases increase by the funds and who has the deals where they’ve maintained some type of control over publishing.

      The increased interest in music catalog (older releases) probably has something to do with this:
      “Old songs now represent 70 percent of the U.S. music market, according to the latest numbers from MRC Data, a music-analytics firm….Only songs released in the past 18 months get classified as “new” in the MRC database, so people could conceivably be listening to a lot of two-year-old songs, rather than 60-year-old ones. But I doubt these old playlists consist of songs from the year before last. Even if they did, that fact would still represent a repudiation of the pop-culture industry, which is almost entirely focused on what’s happening right now…

      “The 200 most popular new tracks now regularly account for less than 5 percent of total streams. That rate was twice as high just three years ago. The mix of songs actually purchased by consumers is even more tilted toward older music. The current list of most-downloaded tracks on iTunes is filled with the names of bands from the previous century, such as Creedence Clearwater Revival and The Police.”

      1. lordkoos

        Being an old guy, I believe that American music from the 20th century cannot be topped – jazz, blues, country/”hillbilly”, folk, classic popular songs, etc – that music produced in the “American century” is the best this country has ever had to offer IMO. Im sure there has been a bit of worthwhile music produced since 2000 but I haven’t hear much of it.

        Occasionally when driving around I listen to the local college radio station which plays a mixure of current pop and lightweight rap music. It’s truly horrible — trendy, and vapid — and produced on computers. For the most part it is musically uninteresting to the point that I can’t believe that any of it will ever be called “classic”. I suppose some of the singers are pretty good but with the constant use of autotune software, who can tell?

        1. Mikel

          Back in the 90s I worked at a music label doing sales.
          Radio was still considered important for sales then.
          But the reality was that well over 60 percent (can’t remember exactly, but it was probably higher) of music sold in record stores did not get radio airplay.

  3. PlutoniumKun

    A new study has some surprising findings on car fires Popular Science

    This isn’t really surprising (i.e. EV’s are the lowest risk). Car fires are surprisingly common. People tend not to know much about them because they are so common they rarely make the news. One former colleague of mine with a fondness for big old model Mercedes and Saab had two different cars go up in flames on him while he was working over a 10 year period (I suspect his dubious mechanical skills may have played a role).

    The issue with EV’s is not that they are a particular high risk of fire, but that the intensity and type of fire provides unique challenges to fire fighters. But there is a strong argument to say that they are, taken as a whole, safer than IC cars when it comes to fire hazard.

    1. Yves Smith Post author

      Yes, but just to be contrary, the study I’d like to see is too hard to do: a fire risk adjusted for intensity, If you are in a car when an EV fire starts, you are guaranteed to be burned more crisp than if cremated. With an IC fire, you might get out alive.

      In addition I bet ~5% of nominal IC fires are not due to the engine/gas tank but other gas in the car. A spectacular example was a friend’s father, an MD who must have had a midlife crisis because he got a pickup truck after his wife divorced him in the 1970s (she was also the first woman to get a mortgage in the state of CT on her own, to do a development project….The bank was very upfront that they didn’t want to give it to her but sorta had to).

      Anyway, during the oil crisis, with every other day fuel up rules, the MD decided to fill a big tank and carry it in his truck so he could drive to Florida and not worry about gassing up.

      You can guess how that movie ended….quite the fireball.

      1. PlutoniumKun

        From what I understand, most IC vehicle fires arise from a build up of hydrocarbon based dirt (i.e. leaky bits of oil or fuel) building up around hot parts or electrics. Another issue is grass fires from people parking with hot exhausts over dry vegetation. I once thought I had a fire in a rental car – it turned out that I’d reversed over some plastic packaging which melted onto the exhaust, and was basically melting away, giving off a terrible smell. Fortunately, it didn’t ignite.

        Good car design can direct a lithium fire away from the main cabin, but obviously that assumes that the occupants can get out.

        The main hazard in my view is in enclosed carparks. I don’t think many building regulations take account of the intensity of lithium fires in designing the fire control mechanisms. I’m not far from where a new children’s hospital is being built here, and it includes an underground carpark which was very controversial at the time as the calculation was that at some stage in its life, it may have to be evacuated due to a vehicle fire. From what I know about it, this was before anyone recognised the greater potential of an EV fire from some hospital consultants’ Tesla and it was never raised at the planning stage, and I’m pretty certain there is nothing in Irish building regs to address this (normally a carpark requires a 1 hour fire barrier, and its assumed that a fire could be driven by leaking fuel – I’ve no idea if a lithium fire is hot enough to go through concrete).

        I dread to think the result if someone does a new risk analysis – its possible that the existing fire control and fire walls can handle this, but if its not, I could see them having to ban hybrids and EV’s from under the hospital and other sensitive buildings. The cost of increasing the depth of fire walls would be prohibitive.

        Vehicle fires can have all sorts of unexpected outcomes. In 1996 the channel tunnel was nearly destroyed when a truck carried on one of the trains ignited. It was carrying syrofoam cups. The combination of air speed and the light cups created a fire with such intensity that it destroyed the concrete lining of the tunnel (which supposedly was impossible). The only reason it wasn’t a disaster was luck – it took place in a ‘dry’ part of the tunnel. If it had been through ‘wet’ geology the entire tunnel would have flooded. I was in a meeting with some tunnel engineers shortly after that and recall a senior engineer going absolutely pale when he’d been confidentially told this by the fire engineers (I still don’t think the extent of the damage was ever truthfully set out in public). It lead to a complete rethink of the design of some tunnels I’d been working on.

        1. The Rev Kev

          Yeah, I think that you have identified a major problem of lithium battery car fires. About four years ago there was a fire in a multistory car park in Liverpool and about 1,400 cars were burnt out. Can you imagine if there were several hundred EVs in that lot?

 (50 secs)

          And even in the open you have occasional grass fires which set off cars burning. Here is one example which destroyed 20 cars but again, what if a lot of them were EVs?

 (1:38 mins)

        2. Amfortas the hippie

          “…grass fires from people parking with hot exhausts over dry vegetation…”

          this is prolly the #3 cause of fires out here.
          #1 is cigarettes,tossed from widows on the fly…#2. welding fences and gates and pole barns.

          interestingly, there have also been rangefires hereabouts caused by sunlight lensing through quartz.

          1. jsn

            Yeah, I remember a Willy Nelson 4th of July Picnic back in the 70s where about half the parking lot burned down!

            As lordkoos observes, it was right after catalytic converters came into use.

          2. The Rev Kev

            ‘there have also been rangefires hereabouts caused by sunlight lensing through quartz’

            There was a case decades ago in England where this guy returned to his home after a holiday away to find burn marks on his wall in the shape of arcs. Baffled, he called in the Fire Brigade who worked out that they were caused by a mirror that he had. It was hot and when the sun passed his window, the mirror would catch and concentrate the sun’s rays like a magnifier glass on the opposite wall and would follow the arc of the sun’s path. They told him that if had been high summer, that his place would have been burned down and nobody would have known why.

        3. Carolinian

          The combustible parts of gasoline cars are in the engine compartment. I believe most EVs have followed Tesla and put the large and heavy battery pack under the passenger space.

      2. Flyover Boy

        Many car fires have very little to do with gasoline, at least until they spread. Hyundai/Kia has had a devil of a time diagnosing and fixing a fire risk on several hundred thousand of their vehicles where a defective anti-lock brake module sparks and bursts into flames when water gets into it. It’s set vehicles on fire even when they were sitting in the owner’s garage, not running.

        Now, obviously a fire like this can happen no matter what propulsion system the vehicle uses. As you suggest, the question is how much explosive potential there is once the fire reaches it.

    2. John Beech

      Once had a car go up in flames and my dubious mechanical skills played a direct role. This, because I’d just installed a new carburetor and didn’t tighten the fuel line fitting beyond finger tight before hoping in for test drive. File under sh!t happens.

      Issue with EV fires is different because the difficulty is in reaching within the pack where combustion is occurring. Same reason a forest fire may come roaring back.

    3. Robert Hahl

      “Where there’s smoke, there’s a Saab.” Ray from Car Talk. I heard this quip replayed a few times. I wondered if NPR was being extortionate.

      1. Fun House

        That’s a reference to some old SAABs using a two-stroke engine, where oil is mixed with gasoline prior to it being introduced into the combustion chamber resulting in smoky exhaust. Those two-stroke SAABs were often nicknamed “popcorn poppers” because of the sound the engine produced.

  4. WillyBgood

    In the article “Coming soon: Climate lockdowns?” the game is given away by the line “elites insist climate change is the “biggest threat modern humans have ever faced”, who are put in contrast to “Trumpers”. More typical libertarian “freedumbs” nonsense.

  5. Mikel

    “Omicron Is Receding, but New Variants Are Coming. This Algorithm Will Help us Keep Up” SpectrumIEEE (David L). Help me. An algo would never have predicted Omicron…

    I’m just wondering how long people will go on pretending most algos aren’t complete crap?
    For now, they are mostly an annoyance in things one could do without.
    As they stick them in more important systems regarding health and safety, how many have to be maimed or killed.
    Then I look at Tesla with its auto drive rolling stop feature (reported yesterday in links).
    That’s total crap that anyone who has taken a drivers test knows not to do.
    At this point, the coddling of these types is another form of degeneracy.

  6. The Rev Kev

    ‘DHS and Border Patrol are working together to eventually deploy Ghost Robotic’s “dogs” on the border, in particular desert terrain. Terminator dogs will supposedly act as a “force multiplier” for CBP in patrols and interdiction.’

    This won’t be the end of it. I once saw a forgettable film set in the future years ago and in it, the borders of the US had automated aerial drones protecting it by killing anything that tried to cross it. Not big ones like the ones that the US Air Force uses but lethal nonetheless.

  7. CanCyn

    Scotland Plants Millions of Trees Along Rivers to Save Wild Salmon From the Heat EcoWatch (David L)
    I am no scientist but I would guess that the river and the fish need sunlight. Shade will cool the water sure, but it will probably have harmful effects too.

  8. SOMK

    Re: Ed West on Prisons.

    Between locking people up and throwing away the key and Anatole France “The law, in its majestic equality, forbids rich and poor alike to sleep under bridges, to beg in the streets, and to steal their bread.” There surely must be some kind of happy medium, the article notes:

    Yet even the progressive alternative of more ‘education’ seems to accept the primal, atavistic case for jail. I’ve even read the argument that, rather than relying on prison, we could reduce crime by raising the school age to 18, because there is evidence to show that crime rates drop during school hours. That is, when teenage boys are forced inside government buildings and not allowed out, they don’t commit crime outside – no way! It’s almost like secondary school is treated as a prison, but one which everyone has to suffer because society sees adolescent males as a nuisance.

    It certainly appears that in the modern urban environment there is little or nothing you can do in the absence of having money and this goes double for teenagers, for whom there exist few if any dedicated spaces (these days you can’t even read book in a library because they are treated essentially as creches), they are perpetually treated as nuisances to be gotten rid of, to the extent that devices that emit high frequency sounds (which adults can’t hear) that will cause them pain or discomfort were universally applauded in the media.

    How do we expect people to grow up if they can’t socialise outside of staring into their phones?

    In lieu of religion (and even with religion the main Christianity aligned are fairly dismal in the sense of how unpersonalised and mass produced the adulting ceremonies are), School leaving exams that stress children in order to prop up fake meritocracy is what we have as initiation rites into adulthood.

    Twenty years ago when first living in rented accommodation one of my housemates was stabbed 37 times in front of me, he had been paying hetrosexual drug addicts that he met in the city centre to sleep with him (I was completely oblivious to this at the time) and one day one of them decided this would be a good guy to rob as he owed money to his dealer. My housemate gets stabbed 37 times, I get robbed of €20 (though otherwise unhurt), when it goes to court I get awarded €1000 and the victim €4000 and the man in question gets sent down for 5 years which adds up to something like €400,000 in total (not including legal costs), this person would almost certainly come out of prison worse not better. All that horror and money for want of €50?

    Whilst it was good that they got caught, the whole process seemed thoroughly alienated from any sense of making a situation better (I received no treatment or counselling, became an alcoholic for two years, routinely becoming black out drunk and spent a year and a half carrying a blade on my person, in retrospect was lucky I didn’t end up in prison myself), it was like if you called a plumber over to fix a blocked toilet and they merely made a large deposit of their own in said toilet, then nailed the door shut, pocketed the cash and walked off whistling such was the competency of the legal system from a point of view of fixing anything, the gross inequality and imbalance of being willing to throw almost infinite resources at something once it gets sufficiently chronic (also meaning a bunch of upper class lawyer and judges will get paid) and outside of that you can go rot.

    The notion that there is nothing better between throwing open the prison doors and locking people up mostly for being poor is imaginatively and empathically impoverished, alas it’s not the kind of poverty people get locked up for having.

    1. diptherio

      That article is pretty bad. Lots of unspoken assumptions in there, specifically that the people who end up locked up are actually guilty of the crime they’ve been charged with. That’s far from a certainty here in the US, with our despicable plea bargaining system and the penchant of the police and prosecutors to focus on arresting poor people who can’t afford an attorney and then threatening them with even worse charges if they don’t confess to something slightly less bad. Plenty of people plead guilty not because they are guilty, but because they’ve been successfully intimidated by the prosecutor.

      The article is a classic case of making broad claims based on only a fraction of the relevant evidence…so perfect for a TED talk.

      1. Alex

        If you say that there is an unspoken assumption (“that the people who end up locked up are actually guilty of the crime they’ve been charged with”), which premise in the article depends on it?

        Also, for the purposes of clarity, is it “ALL the people who end up locked up are actually guilty of the crime they’ve been charged with” or “MOST OF the people who end up locked up are actually guilty of the crime they’ve been charged with”?

        1. JBird4049

          I don’t know what the percentages are of innocent people being arrested and jailed, but I do know that in the United States in many areas it is normal to have the “speedy trial” be years in the doing. Even when someone is found innocent, they have already spent considerable time in jail.

          1. lordkoos

            Why is the constitutional right to a speedy trial not brought up more often in court? I recall reading about a young man in Rikers who was incarcerated before trail for over a year and then finally committee suicide.

            1. JBird4049

              IIRC, it has, but exceptions are common; it is like civil asset forfeiture where law enforcement seizes everything from the money in one’s wallet, your car, home, and business only on the reasoning that they “believe” it is connected to illegal drugs. It has been happening everyday for thirty years and just as with bail, tickets or trial dates, it has been perverted. With the court cases, any delays are not the court’s fault somehow and keeping you imprisoned is more important than your rights.

              The various methods either force people people to pled guilty, often to crimes that they did not commit, or provide a secretive cash flow for municipal, state, and federal agencies and governments either to replace or more commonly add to the normal taxes.

              Sometimes all of the above: “You plead guilt, we keep the car and your life savings, but your mom/wife/kids keeps their house and you get to go home albeit with a criminal record.” And the local police and politicians get to show they are “tough on crime.” If the defendant does not plead, then that local private prison gets a new, profitable inmate. Heads you lose, and tails I win. And it is all completely legal.

    2. Henry Moon Pie

      Our society is so much better at wreaking havoc than dealing with the consequences of that havoc. This applies to humans and the Earth.

    3. Edwin

      Despite the unscientific approach, I think Ed West does have a point about the predictability of recidivism, at least with certain types of crimes. People who commit crimes related to sexual compulsions, for example, are very likely to re-offend.

      But I think prison as a catch-all solution is unimaginative and will likely be more cruel and expensive than other tactics to prevent repeated criminal actions.

  9. Mikel

    “Coming soon: Climate lockdowns?” The Hill

    “But don’t expect the new rules to apply to everyone equally. During the pandemic, elites don’t wear masks in private — only their servers, drivers and cleaners do. You will be held responsible for your personal carbon footprint, enforced by either law or social convention. But climate evangelists such as Jeff Bezos or “climate czar” John Kerry will receive special dispensations for their carbon use”

    In other words, you can live just like you do now as long as you have a lot of money.
    This is about rent extraction and techno fuedalism in the guise of “fighting climate change.”
    It’s already the ones with the most money with biggest carbon footprint. So nothing changes but new ways to extract rents from people.
    It’a bezzle, grift, you name it and they can all go burn…

    1. Larry Y

      Funny thing is that denial and preventing solutions like “Green New Deal”, or more realistic and substantial solutions from radical conservation to Saul Griffith’s Electrify will pretty much default to neofeudalism/corporate “Eco-facism” or just ugly dystopian collapse.

      Pretty much why libertarians mostly go for denial, as far as I can tell.

    2. jrs

      You know what is actually really elite and extremely unfair – that rich countries, some countries much more than others, use vastly unfair amounts of resources and produce most of the greenhouse gasses, and yet even poor countries suffer famines and droughts due to climate change which they did almost nothing to contribute to.

      But yes the focus on use is misguided, yes that needs to decline but the means to get there is by halting fossil fuel extraction.

  10. Nikkikat

    Thanks Yves, you are as usual correct on all fronts. Very well informed interviews. I am still guessing none of the rich out of touch rock stars even listened to those interviews.

  11. Mikel

    “The Investigation of Pulmonary Abnormalities using Hyperpolarised Xenon Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Patients with Long-COVID” MedRxIv

    That sounds expensive. Again, it just brings to mind what could have been missed (before Covid and its funding) about learning some of these things about viruses.

  12. griffen

    Winter weather and supposed preparation by Texas government and the grid operators. In a prior discussion this week, Texas hill country denizen and resident commentator on sundry topics Amfortas the hippie shared a deep, deep dive article from Texas Monthly. It goes into great detail on the prevailing business influence and also the regulatory constraints of how ERCOT is loosely governed / oversight is “barebones”. With the allowance I’m indirectly the source of this article, and tip of the cap to kindred NC follower please see below.

    My thought reading these articles in 2022, senior citizens dying of hypothermia in supposedly modern cities is just shameful. I lived and worked in the Dallas (Plano) during the 2011 winter storm, and plowing the snow on secondary streets was up to you, dear citizen. My trusty 2001 Maxima was up to the challenge(!)

    1. Questa Nota

      With all the weather wobbles and climate climaxes, what do readers in different parts of the world anticipate, or what have readers seen, for early bloomer flowers?

      As a kid, I enjoyed seeing the perky little crocuses popping up.

      1. Amfortas the hippie

        last year, the 2 week feb. ice age hit right when our earliest flowers were wont to be abloomin…tiny purple gentian and vervain(i think) bright yellow ;scrambled eggs”…a handful of others i don’t have names for.
        but they had to wait(as did the Rescue Grass).
        after the eventual warmup, in march, those february flowers (and grass) came on like a dam burst…but so did the flowers that bloom in march…by april, all the flowers, february to july , were in full bloom.
        this is not good…these successions in bloom time are known and relied upon by various critters, from migrating butterflies and moths, to field mics, lizards and voles.
        such a crazy disruption, where they’re all happening at once, also disrupts the critters that depend on them.
        trees had their bud-out/blooms at odd times last year, as well.
        past 6+ years, it’s been the grasshopper hordes preventing the oaks, pecans and mesquites from bearing nuts and pods…last year apparently knocked out the problematic hopper species(leaving a less voracious psychedelic green one in their place)…but the 2 week deep freeze accomplished the same, after all…

        also weirdly, tomatoes and peppers just wouldn’t even try until late june…and i had toms until january, even with a few light freezes.
        (still got ’em in the greenhouse…but we’ll see…i finally lit that woodstove an hour ago.
        18 degrees, sideways snow in large flakes, and about 3″ on the ground…drifts against fences and sheds:one foot plus.
        expect this, with sunshine after today, until sunday.
        calling for windchills -5-10 tonight.

      2. LaRuse

        My hellebores (lenten roses) already have buds up and ready. Probably will bloom by this weekend or early next week. When I first planted them a decade ago, they bloomed in the third or last week of Feb. Now, buds are up by the end of January. (US Ag Zone 7 if that is useful).

  13. The Rev Kev

    “Freedom Convoy: GoFundMe pauses donations to Canada truckers”

    And it is things like this which have led me to despise Silicon Valley corporations. This is a case of them working hand in hand with governments to suppress protest movements by trying to hold their money hostage. The article also mentions that Canadian officials want to launch legal action to stop that money flow altogether. Look, I have no feelings towards those truck protestors one way or another but even blind Freddy can see that there is no police solution to this impasse. Nor trying to seize their money. And as for calling in the military like some officials have suggested, well, forget it. My map tells me that Canada is a really big country and I mean really big which means very long supply lines. So what happens if those truckers say that all of got sick with this virus and are going to have to take the month of February off while they isolate at home? So no BeaverTails for Ottawa this month. Think they’ll crack?

    1. Dandelion

      For several years now, GoFundMe has been doing this to feminists in the UK funding court cases (some yet to be heard, several now won) on the basis that simply filing, for instance, an employment discrimination suit, constitutes “hate speech.”

      Code is not just law. Code is now Inquisition: heretics will have their tongues cut out.

      1. Paleobotanist

        Hello Dandelion,

        What type of feminist court cases have been shut down by this defunding, if I may ask?

        Thank you,


    2. Wukchumni

      I was able to do a GoFunMe to Canadian truckers stranded, eh?

      A dozen each of these will be in their hands soon:

      Party hats
      Noise makers
      Glow sticks in assorted colors
      Metallic balloons with various wording (happy b-day, etc)
      Those things that look like a long tongue when you blow into em’.

        1. witters

          I’m stoned. And I want to ask why “I am off my face”? is the usual descriptor (well, here, in Australia), and why it seems both sensless and deeply right. Help appreciated.

  14. urblintz

    Matt Damon shilling crypto is insignificant compared to Morgan Freeman (and Rob Reiner) shilling “Russia is evil” agitprop. But indeed, actors gonna grift…

    1. The Rev Kev

      If an actor wants to take up something that they are into like crypto and use their fame to spruik it, well, that is all on them But when you see his ‘Fortune Favours the Brave’ add, he actually riffed off his role as the stranded astronaut in his film “The Martian.” Why would he do that? (1:00 mins)

      1. urblintz

        good point… I confess not to have seen the ad and you’re right that it likely increases the vulnerability of his fans, and fans of that movie, to the unicoin fairy.

        I’ll never forgive Freeman. He’s off my list.

      2. Sailor Bud

        Because practically his entire career is built on competence porn.

        That one, The Martian, takes the cake, because it’s just two Tom Hanks flicks of that type smacked together: Cast Away and Apollo 13.

          1. Sailor Bud

            Long form ode to two Tom Hanks films smacked together into one story, but if that’s the literature you dig, then dig in, dig?

      3. Noone from Nowheresville

        In addition, his mother was a teacher and Howard Zinn was a neighbor. Damon even was a narrator on Zinn’s A People’s History. So I naively thought initially the ad would be some kind of history museum or educational program until we got to the end.

        Then I shrugged and thought Ocean’s Eleven styled stealing from the casinos. Statistically losing bet. Of course the Bournes of the world might make a fortune if they are in and out before anyone knows.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        Selleck has:
        -reverse mortgages
        -cop glorification show
        -stealing water for his almond farms

        The guy is just a stain on humanity.

        1. WobblyTelomeres

          >The guy is just a stain on humanity.

          Which is odd as he looks like one of those twirly scrubbing bubbles.

          1. Pate

            Selleck vert is indeed sickening. Even worse for me are Namath and Jimmy JJ Walker peddling Medicare Advantage Plans (call now its free … the call is the only thing that’s free). Worst are the pharma ads.

            1. Martin Oline

              People call them to find their zip codes. I was going to call and ask if they could find my glasses . . .

            2. Pat

              Not for nothing but I cut Walker a bit of a break in that he hasn’t much of a career and any backend money he is getting is probably pennies. He probably needs the paycheck. I don’t like it, but keeping your head above water does lead to not asking any questions.
              Selleck, on the other hand, gets tens of millions a year from Bluebloods alone. It was like the late Fred Thompson shilling for reverse mortgages when he had to be getting high six figure residual checks minimum from Law and Order. There is no excuse. They signed on to bilk seniors with no financial worries but a need to accumulate more.

            3. Yves Smith Post author

              Yes, a tossup which is worse, the Medicare Advantage or the reverse mortgages. I see too many of both because cop shows are now my Muzak while working on Links. A weird legacy from my mother.

              But I have to say, Jason Beghe (Chicago PD) is a fantastic actor. Hated him initially and now am intrigued by his technique. Plus I have yet to see him do any commercials.

    2. Larry Y

      A lot of crypto hype is FOMO (Fear of Missing Out), whether it’s a grift or not.

      And when things are this frothy, hard to tell how much is grift unless deeply informed. Example is IQONIQ – which roped in a lot of big name sporting entities: Zenit St Petersburg, Crystal Palace FC, AS Roma (which made the platform its sleeve sponsor) Real Sociedad (of whom IQONIQ became the main sponsor for the 2020-21 season), Valencia CF, and to crown this spree, La Liga as a whole.

    3. the last D

      So do all the american televangelicals, strutting about on their golden stages, on televisions around the world, 24-7, selling Salvation, after all, pitching eternity in a show that’s never intended to end, and if they have their way, never will. Call it the grifts of the spirit. Actors all.

  15. Wukchumni

    Why Is Matt Damon Shilling For Crypto? New York Times.

    The cryptocurrency industry’s marketing efforts are focused on young people, especially young men. Surveys have shown that some 40 percent of all American men ages 18 to 29 have invested in, traded or used a form of cryptocurrency.
    For far too long i’ve been in a unicorn ring clad in the kit of a toreador while holding up a red flag to ward off it’s advances and so far-so good, I think.

    Picking winners consistently @ the oval office on the ponies, or in other gambling venues emanating out of lower Manhattan, or a colosseum near you, is really difficult.

    Bitcoin on the other hand has been simple, it went from nothing to presently nearly $37k, that is if you weren’t one of the newbies who bought in near the high on a $54k basis because Matt or Tom & Gisele put the hard sell on you, how could the GOAT ever be wrong?

    When this is done and over there are going to be a lot of angry young men-lets call them the Nouveau Risk, who lost everything to a pyramid scheme*, and while we in no way shape or form resemble Albania in the late 1990’s, this is what went down when their pyramid schemes collapsed…

    The pyramid scheme phenomenon in Albania is important because its scale relative to the size of the economy was unprecedented, and because the political and social consequences of the collapse of the pyramid schemes were profound. At their peak, the nominal value of the pyramid schemes’ liabilities amounted to almost half of the country’s GDP. Many Albanians—about two-thirds of the population—invested in them. When the schemes collapsed, there was uncontained rioting, the government fell, and the country descended into anarchy and a near civil war in which some 2,000 people were killed. Albania’s experience has significant implications for other countries in which conditions are similar to those that led to the schemes’ rise in Albania, and others can learn from the way the Albanian authorities handled—and mishandled—the crisis.

    * which might explain why so much money has been splashed on name brand stars in tv commercials and renaming of arenas, et al. The early money needs new blood to get them out?


    I’m elated to announce the launch of Schrödinger’s Coin, with the hypothetical of it going up and down in value simultaneously.

    1. The Rev Kev

      Schrödinger’s Coin? A brilliant idea that. You could tell investors that their investment is in a secure account. But whether it is there or not can only be resolved by looking into it and do they really want to find out before they sell it on to the next sucker, errr, investor?

      1. Wukchumni

        I feel Pavlov’s Doge Coin will be a winner too, as the value goes up everytime somebody online hits the refresh button on it’s current worth.

  16. Mikel

    “A New Drug That Contains Meth and Heroin Is on the Rise in Afghanistan” Vice

    “Alongside the usual mish-mash of gimmicky pinger logos, such as Donald Trump’s head, Rolex and Tesla, batches of tablet Ks have been stamped with the name of the Netflix series La Casa De Papel (Money Heist) with a masked face from the show on the back…”

    Revealing that these days, taking or dealing drugs is not anti-establishment.

    But there are so many surprises cut into these K tablets that they should put them at the bottom of a box of Cracker Jacks.

    1. juanholio

      It seems weird that they’d want to take those things simultaneously, rather than one followed by the other (followed by the other etc)

  17. griffen

    Jeff’s big boat story. Wait, the rasp attention of national media for shuttling into space was not a sufficient ego boost!?! Onto the boat, well I don’t think he will need a bigger boat. Sure it’s a temporary jobs program, but is dismantling a century+ old / historical bridge really a great idea?

    The article(s) that I read also state the ship’s 3 masts are tall enough that they may cause interference for helicopters. So a smaller support vessel is equipped with the helipad. No lie, the superyacht has it’s own dinghy.

    1. begob

      Surely the late Paul Allen’s floating palace was larger than Jeff’s? I believe it was a converted liner, so maybe doesn’t qualify as a yacht.

      1. tegnost

        Octopus was 414 ft, the bezos thing is 417′. You don’t honestly think this guy… (disco bezos for those with weak stomachs…)
        would have the shorter yacht….
        for the record I saw the oracle in trials way back when and I think ellison makes those guys look pretty flaccid.
        i’d take paul allens fleet over bezos any day though. bezos is just funny glasses and a polyester shirt as far as applicable uses go…
        bezos is a piker, as any fool should know.

      2. Joe Renter

        Funny story on Paul Allen’s floating helicopter boat. He built it because the city of Mercer Island would not let him have a landing pad on his property. So he flew his helicopter to the boat (ship?) that was docked next to his mansion.

  18. The Rev Kev

    “A Chief Physician on the Perils of Germany’s Omicron Strategy”

    Dr. Jana Schroeder knows that the pandemic is still out of control, that the data is getting fuzzy, contact tracing has collapsed, etc. but I don’t think that she understands why education ministers insist that there can only be in-person teaching, no matter how many tens of thousands of children are getting infected. She even acknowledges that everyone in school will get infected and that thousands will be seriously damaged by this. Or maybe she does understand why and is unwilling to admit in a major publication that the real reason for forcing children into virus-breeding pens is so that their parents can be forced to go back to work as they no longer have to mind their children. And all for the good of the economy of course.

    1. Amfortas the hippie

      from the thread:”These robots look super-vulnerable to normal wear & tear.

      They look even more vulnerable to a super-soaker filled with common household items like salt, vinegar, & just a lil dish soap. Maybe with a lil diatomaceous earth to bump up the scrubbing power.”

      i imagine an ordinary painball gun would do wonders for blinding the dern thing, too.

            1. Norm de plume

              Like most other tech you get the sense that these obstacles will prove to be temporary. For the best taste of what a worst case scenario might look with these things, Black Mirror’s Metalhead provides some rather frightening food for thought.

  19. Mildred Montana

    >Does Quitting Smoking Increase Obesity?

    Anecdotally, yes. Maybe not obesity but definitely weight gain. I added ten pounds to my 140-pound frame when I quit my moderate half-a-pack a day habit, with no change in diet. Sure wasn’t expecting that but got rid of them in about a month by upping my walking.

    My guess is that smoking increases one’s metabolic rate, as does exercise.

    1. Beyond the rubicoN

      It can, yes. I found that my appetite increased substantially. ( I’ve heard it said that smoking curbs your appetite.) Also a half a pack a day for 17 years. The only solution I found was to exercise to offset the increased calorie intake and the temporary increase in anxiety. I managed to keep the weight off…so far…

    2. Sailor Bud

      Did you have to reduce or remove your coffee intake too? My immediate suspicion centered around that culprit, when I saw the link above.

      Coffee and cigarettes are such best friends that I know that duo led me to many days of little food at all, and little desire other than an occasional pang when I noticed I hadn’t eaten in six hours. Cigarettes take the place of food, to many smokers, and coffee just makes it worse.

      1. begob

        Black coffee and vaping recently got me through a 84 hour fast to achieve the uncertain benefits of autophagy. Lingering knee strain disappeared, hasn’t come back.

    3. griffen

      Anecdotally back in the mid 80s, my late father quit cold turkey*. Thirty years and I think at 2 packs per day. His evening Chesterfield was replaced with snack food, so I’m guessing he added 20 pounds and it weren’t muscle. But we managed to get him walking 18 holes on cheap golf courses by the early ’90s. For all the ills directed at golf, it was a valuable sport and exercise to share with him. And importantly it ain’t exercise to ride the cart!

      *mostly cold turkey, as I caught him with an occasional cigar but didn’t tell

    4. Michael Fiorillo

      I’ve often thought that the prevalence of booze and cigarettes, as shown in 1930’s-’60’s films, had something to do with the privations of the Depression years, where alcohol (essentially concentrated plant sugars) and tobacco (a sublimation of eating) compensated for poor diets…

      1. Anonymous 2

        Governments encouraged smoking during the World Wars as they considered tobacco to settle people’s nerves.

  20. Mikel

    “David Crosby, Graham Nash and Stephen Stills ask to pull their content from Spotify” NPR

    I don’t have a list, but didn’t some music artists or their estates recently make huge deals with hedge funds/financiers for their catalogs?
    Will be interesting to see how these types of issues develop with artists that made those kinds of deals and those that did not.

  21. The Rev Kev

    “Russia crisis exacerbates US political divisions”

    Sounds like Psaki is demanding that everybody toe the White House line and that if you don’t, then you are really not an American. Of course Psaki is kind hapless which is why they let her appear on The View but would never consider her going on with Tucker Carlson or, god forbid, Joe Rogan.

  22. fresno dan
    Everybody knows Fox News draws Republicans the way mashed potatoes attracts gravy, but new viewership data from Nielsen MRI Fusion (written up in The Wrap, Forbes, The Hill and elsewhere) shows that the conservative outlet’s audience includes oodles of self-described younger Democrats. In October, The Wrap reports, Tucker Carlson’s primetime show was the top-rated news show among Democrats between 25-54. “In total-day viewership, Fox News grabbed 42 percent of Democrats aged 25-54, CNN nabbed 33 percent, and MSNBC got 25 percent,” The Wrap’s Lindsey Ellefson wrote.
    The only problem I have with the article is the rigid adherence to the shibboleth of a left/right or conservative/liberal definition. This labeling of people with such outdated and irrelevent …uh, labels means that the entire discussion consists of only straw man arguments.
    Who, besides Tucker Carlson in the MSM, has questioned the wisdom of getting involved in Ukraine, or the vilification of Russia?
    So is Carlson a “liberal” or a “conservative???”
    And why aren’t MSNBC, CNN, NYT, and WP called conservative for their war mongering over Ukraine, and anti Russian hysteria???

    1. Eureka Springs

      labels means that the entire discussion consists of only straw man arguments.

      I’m going to borrow that from time to time.

      I wonder how many of these youngsters are watching fox because it’s on and they can’t turn it off or the old folks will throw a hissy fit? The count of unwilling viewers is never revealed.

  23. Carolinian

    Re Oshkosh Defense and the new USPS vehicles–I’ve heard little about this even though I’m in great, er, proximity to the target of the controversy. Perhaps Oshkosh could prove that it really is about an available facility and not union busting by offering a union contract to the new facility. If Wisconsinites want to move down to SC we are about to have plenty of available housing.

    1. griffen

      Interesting story, have to wonder if the corporate leadership was clear & upfront, or not, before being awarded the contract. I did see one WI state leader, Sen Baldwin, give a sleight of hand remark about the “inexperienced” workforce (which may also draw able workforce employees from western NC).

      Just a little more congestion on the local roads and byways though. And if they were to indeed move, they may also wonder whether the I-85 construction will actually finish.

      1. Carolinian

        Well our track record on the 787 isn’t that great but the BMW operation is hardly chopped liver. 10,000 employees.

        And while the article quotes the Bidenistas denying any influence on the USPS and its choice, Biden recently said that he owed his presidency to Clyburn. Some SC payback?

    2. Randy

      I have to ask…..How is it that SC is about to have plenty of available housing?

      Speaking as an anecdotal Wisconsonite I and others like me still prefer Walker Wississippi over the South.

      1. griffen

        Plots are being cleared for new subdivisions, not literally left and right but over the next few years a number of single family homes are going up. I am not certain about price points, but I hope to find out later in 2022.

        And that is specific to this region, which is marketed as Upstate South Carolina. Charlotte is about an hour+ to the north on I-85, Asheville is closer. Lastly, Greenville is developing a very well earned reputation and attracting people to the pedestrian friendly downtown district.

  24. Cat Burglar

    “Small wonder, said Finn, that Finn is without honour in the breast of a sea-blue book, Finn that is twisted and trampled and tortured for the weaving of a story-teller’s book-web. Who but a book-poet would dishonour the God-big Finn for the sake of a gap-worded story? Who could have the saint Ceallach carried off by his four acolytes and he feeble and thin from his Lent-fast, laid in the timbers of an old boat, hidden for night in an old oak tree and slaughtered without mercy in the morning, his shrivelled body to be torn by a wolf and a scaldcrow and the Kite of Cluain-Eo?….Who but a story-teller? Indeed, it is true that there has been ill-usage to the men of Erin from the book-poets of the world, and dishonour for Finn, with no knowing the nearness of disgrace or the sorrow of death, or the hour when they may swim for swans or trot for ponies or bell for stags or croak for frogs or fester for the wounds on a man’s back.”

    Joyce read this by magnifying glass near the end of his life.

  25. lance ringquist

    i fixed part of the biden student loan article.

    “the direct results of nafta billy clintons disastrous policies: full-time employment has consisted of low-paying gig work or jobs with little prospect of advancement resulting in abject poverty.”

  26. JTMcPhee

    About National Nurses United — this group is painfully parochial. They are only open to “registered nurses,” and pointedly exclude from membership over a million licensed practical nurses and licensed vocational nurses. Not the wisest move, if the idea is to leverage some political power. But then registered nurses, many of them, sure are redolent of the aura of the PMC.

    And that exclusion is particularly annoying to me, as a retired LPN, who fortuitously retired before Covid, that LPNs and LVNs work in the same, or often more threatening and exposed caregiving situations, as RNs. And nurses of all denominations have been sickened and have died due to this disease, exacerbated by the predatory monsters that are rich, fat and happy, due to the way they operate the medical machinery.

  27. lance ringquist

    here is why a U.B.I. without protectionism, will only make things worse as the economic policy inst. states,

    “And the current investments are already at risk: If steps are not taken to rebalance trade so that more of the goods consumed in the United States are made domestically, much of the new spending and new jobs will leak away to foreign suppliers.”

    Smith, Franklin, Lincoln, Keynes, FDR, and Truman understood this quite well.

    i cannot stand it when people say globalization, we have had that for many many centuries. what we have today is different, its called free trade, and its world wide, enforced by corporations. so i fixed part of the article to reflect this,

    “nafta billy clinton knew free trade would decimate minority workers, he was ready with jails to house them

    the loss of manufacturing jobs from free trade has been particularly devastating for Black and Hispanic workers and other workers of color,

    free trade has decimated manufacturing employment which often overlooked costs for Black, Brown, and other workers of color.”

    fixed again,

    ” new manufacturing jobs is important for Black workers, who have been particularly hard hit by “free trade” and the decline in manufacturing employment.”

    also add,
    please click on the link for the charts at the bottom for the empirical evidence, that will be completely ignored by the feverish free traders.

    1. HotFlash

      Another casualty rarely recognized is women. Fifty years ago a family could handle food, clothing, shelter, health care, and education on one paycheck. Unions were strong. My machinist neighbour provided for his wife and 5 kids, they had a boat, too, behind which I learned to water ski. He amused himself with interesting projects, one I recall was a replica motorized buckboard that he built from scratch, it steered with a tiller. An early Dodge, I think it was? His employer, a feeder plant for the auto industry, also covered health care for the family, paid college tuition for the kids, and had awesome company picnics and Christmas parties. My dad was a reporter for a small-town newspaper, he was not union but the typesetters and press-room guys were. My schoolmates’ mothers were mostly stay-at-home moms except in unusual circumstances, eg. widows or equivalent, and the occasional small business owners.

      Nowadays most households seem to be double-income, many with no kids. We were so happy back in the 60’s when we thought we were liberated, that we could get good educations and good-paying jobs in interesting fields, like the guys had. Instead we got our paychecks absorbed into corporate profits, and even the kid’s, too. Lower income AKA “unskilled’ jobs disappeared to automation or downloading — I’m not just talking computers and fancy robotics here but newspaper delivery, gas station attendant, grocery stocker, ditch digger. They might not have paid a lot, but a kid could earn a few bucks to put away for college, or buy a car.

      And then there’s the tax on time. Parents juggling one or more jobs, whether multiple McJobs or just onean ‘upscale’ that demands 60 hour weeks, plus raising kids and maintaining a household (cooking, cleaning, laundry, grocery buying, dog walking) requires all the running you can do to stay in one place.

      1. lance ringquist

        but but that was inefficient, all smoke and mirrors.

        if only the deplorable would have learned how to code.

  28. Korual

    What’s so hard about understanding consciousness?

    Neuroscientists are so narrow minded, pun intended. They only understand animal brain consciousness.

    On the one hand they ignore the proof of quantum physics which demonstrates that all particles have a basic universal consciousness that is a fundamental part of their intra-action. Barad has written about this.

    Then they miss language, the fundamental intra-action of human consciousness. We only perceive the colour Orange by reference to what other people call red and yellow. Same with our selves, we perceive our selves relative to Others through language. Human consciousness is all symbolic and imaginary discourse.

    Basic universal consciousness, animal brain consciousness and human consciousness are 3 different dimensions of consciousness, each higher but dependant on the previous.

  29. The Rev Kev

    ‘President Biden
    United States government official
    I’ve formed a new Cancer Cabinet, which will be convened in the coming weeks. They will drive the whole-of-government effort to unleash every possibility within our power to end cancer as we know it.’


    ‘American has actually been blocking trials for CIMAVAX, Cuba’s lung cancer vaccine, for years now. They refuse to have it tested in the US despite the fact that it’s been proven to not only prevent 85% of small cell carcinoma but can be used to treat already developed cancer.’

  30. Offtrail

    “This algorithm will keep us safe”.

    Ha ha ha ha. That’s the funniest thing I ever heard, speaking as a developer.

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