By Lambert Strether of Corrente
Happy Bastille Day!
Bird Song of the Day
Marsh Wren, Oregon, United States. Hat tip, Judith: “This year, the marsh wrens were late at the nearby marsh. When they arrived they were fewer in number than usual. They were mostly silent instead of trilling. And they stayed hidden deep within the reeds instead of perching precariously at the edges of the cattails. Spring without the sweet abundance of marsh wrens.” So here they are!
Lambert here: One reader suggested changing these quotes; I don’t think it’s a bad idea, but I need to think about it. I don’t want to be too doomy — we are not short of inventory in that department — but I don’t want to go all chipped and Pollyanna-esque, either.
“But what is government itself, but the greatest of all reflections on human nature?” –James Madison, Federalist 51
“They had learned nothing, and forgotten nothing.” –Charles Maurice de Talleyrand-Périgord
“When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro.” –Hunter Thompson
“Additional action needed to meet Biden’s climate goals: analysis” [The Hill]. “A new analysis has found that the U.S. is currently not on track to meet President Biden’s climate goals unless it takes additional policy actions to mitigate global warming. The report, from research firm Rhodium Group, found that by 2030, the U.S. will have cut its emissions by between 24 and 35 percent compared to where they were at in 2005. That’s a significantly smaller cut than the 50 to 52 percent that President Biden has called for. But, the projection does not include emissions cuts that would come from regulations that have been proposed, but not yet been finalized… Over the past year, hopes for significant legislative action to tackle climate change have dwindled, as Democrats have failed to reach a deal on President Biden’s spending agenda.”
“New Proposal Would Accelerate Student Loan Forgiveness For Borrowers In Public Service — But Its Fate Is Uncertain” [Forbes]. “House Democrats this week unveiled a new bill that would reform a key student loan forgiveness program. If passed, the bill would result in dramatically accelerated student loan forgiveness for borrowers who have devoted their careers to public service work. The Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF) program can wipe out the federal student loan debt for borrowers who work for nonprofit or government organizations. Under the original program rules enacted in 2007, borrowers must work as full-time employees for at least 10 years for qualifying employers to become eligible for student loan forgiveness. But for years, the PSLF program has been plagued by complicated and poorly-communicated rules, as well as administrative and implementation problems, resulting in sky-high denial rates. To address these issues, in October the Biden administration announced the Limited PSLF Waiver, a temporary overhaul which relaxes some of the PSLF program’s problematic eligibility rules to allow past loan periods — such as payments made on non-qualifying federal student loans or under non-qualifying repayment plans — to “count” towards a borrower’s student loan forgiveness term under PSLF. Education Secretary Miguel Cardona has touted $8.1 billion in new student forgiveness approved under the under the Limited PSLF Waiver, calling the overhaul ‘life-changing’ for borrowers.” • $8.1 billion is not very much. Commentary:
1. Why an October deadline?
2. Why a deadline at all?
3. If this waiver was announced 9 months ago, why did eligible debtors just get notified about it this week?
4. If you know who’s eligible, why not automate this process instead of making people apply?
5. PSLF is still broken. https://t.co/zDlex886lh
— The Debt Collective 🟥 (@StrikeDebt) July 14, 2022
“An Open Letter Denouncing the Attacks on Justice Clarence Thomas” [By Glenn Loury and Robert Woodson, RealClearPolitics]. “White progressives do not have the moral authority to excommunicate a black man from his race because they disagree with him. And those – regardless of background – who join in the charade or remain silent are guilty of enabling this abuse. We, the undersigned, condemn the barrage of racist, vicious, and ugly personal attacks that we are witnessing on Clarence Thomas – a sitting Supreme Court justice. Whether it is calling him a racist slur, an ‘Uncle Tom’ or questioning his ‘blackness’ over his jurisprudence, the disparagement of this man, of his faith and of his character, is abominable. Regardless of where one stands on Justice Thomas’ personal or legal opinions, he is among the pantheon of black trailblazers throughout American history and is a model of integrity, scholarship, steadfastness, resilience, and commitment to the Constitution of the United States of America. For three decades Justice Thomas has served as a model for our children. He has long been honored and celebrated by black people in this country and his attackers do not speak for the majority of blacks.”
* * *
GA: “Why Kemp-Warnock voters could factor into 2022 race” [Atlanta Journal-Constitution]. “With four months to go until the November vote, it’s impossible to predict what new developments could upend an election in which even minor fluctuations in voter habits could have major consequences. But there’s some evidence that a bloc of voters plan to divide their votes in the state’s top races between Warnock and Kemp. That dynamic is backed by public polling averages that indicate the governor is outperforming Walker by about 4 percentage points — and that Warnock is garnering more support than Abrams by roughly the same margin. Some potential split-ticket voters are Republicans who can’t stomach voting for Walker, whose history of violent behavior, pattern of false claims and mystifying comments has threatened GOP chances to win a seat that could decide control of the evenly divided Senate. Polls have shown that support for Republican U.S. Senate candidate Herschel Walker is about 4 percentage points the backing Gov. Brian Kemp is receiving. That’s helped foster suggestions that a significant number of Georgia voters could split their tickets in November, backing Kemp over Democrat Stacey Abrams but picking Democratic U.S. Sen. Raphael Warnock over Walker…. Others are Democratic voters who say they want to reward Kemp for rejecting Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election in Georgia or because they’re satisfied with his performance in his first term in office.”
PA: “Fetterman: To fight inflation, let’s make more stuff in America” [John Fetterman, Erie Times]. “And if we’re going to be serious about bringing down gas prices, we need to suspend the federal gas tax to provide immediate relief for people at the pump. We should also continue to use American oil — and produce and invest in more American energy…. But inflation isn’t only impacting us at the pump. It’s everywhere. So it’s not just energy we should be making here at home. It’s everything. More American energy, more American manufacturing, more American goods. And more American jobs. We should be ramping up production across industries, increasing capacity and supply to bring down prices across the board. Making more stuff here in America would mean prices wouldn’t spike every time there’s a problem overseas. We don’t need to be outsourcing any more jobs and production to China. And we don’t need to be shouldering the burden when other countries enter into conflicts or declare deranged wars, like Russia’s Putin did in Ukraine, which contributed to prices skyrocketing. We can use American energy to drive down prices at the gas pump for American workers. And we can use American workers to drive down the price of everything, for everyone.” • Hmm. (I found this via Yahoo News, which noted the original was from the Erie Times. When I searched for it, Google didn’t even bring up the hit. I had to go to the Erie Times page, where indeed I found the article. And so we see Google isn’t just ignoring local newsrooms, it’s actively suppressing them.)
PA: “Where in the world is Dr. Oz?” [Politico]. A week ago, but nevertheless: “Mehmet Oz is trailing in polls. A key Republican has yet to endorse him since the celebrity doctor won the GOP nomination for Pennsylvania Senate more than a month ago. And Oz has gone dark on the airwaves since May 21 — even as his Democratic rival John Fetterman burnishes his brand on TV as a political outsider, and paints Oz as a carpetbagger from New Jersey. This is not the general election kickoff in a pivotal Senate race that Republicans were hoping for. The shaky start to Oz’s general election campaign, coming off a hard-fought primary that took a recount to resolve, is prompting finger-pointing in Pennsylvania’s GOP circles. Some Republicans are arguing that Oz should do more to unite the party, reach deeper into his pockets to fund his campaign, and attack Fetterman more aggressively.m.” • Strategic genius!
Democrats en Déshabillé
I have moved my standing remarks on the Democrat Party (“the Democrat Party is a rotting corpse that can’t bury itself”) to a separate, back-dated post, to which I will periodically add material, summarizing the addition here in a “live” Water Cooler. (Hopefully, some Bourdieu.) It turns out that defining the Democrat Party is, in fact, a hard problem. I do think the paragraph that follows is on point all the way back to 2016, if not before:
The Democrat Party is the political expression of the class power of PMC, their base (lucidly explained by Thomas Frank in Listen, Liberal!). ; if the Democrat Party did not exist, the PMC would have to invent it. . (“PMC” modulo “class expatriates,” of course.) Second, all the working parts of the Party reinforce each other. Leave aside characterizing the relationships between elements of the Party (ka-ching, but not entirely) those elements comprise a network — a Flex Net? An iron octagon? — of funders, vendors, apparatchiks, electeds, NGOs, and miscellaneous mercenaries, with assets in the press and the intelligence community.
Note, of course, that the class power of the PMC both expresses and is limited by other classes; oligarchs and American gentry (see ‘industrial model’ of Ferguson, Jorgensen, and Jie) and the working class spring to mind. Suck up, kick down.
* * *
“Working Class and Hispanic Voters Are Losing Interest in the Party of Abortion, Gun Control and the January 6th Hearings” [Ruy Teixeira, The Liberal Patriot]. “Democrats are betting on a small set of issues to mitigate their losses this November. Inflation may have just hit a 40 year high (9.1 percent) with concomitant recession risk but Democrats believe that campaigning against the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade, arguing for more gun control in the wake of recent mass shootings and highlighting Trump’s anti-democratic malfeasance through the January 6th hearings can turn the tide in their favor…. . Recent data indicate that success for the abortion-gun control-January 6th strategy, to the extent it is working (and might work in the future) is attributable to those voters for whom these issues loom large and are less likely to be influenced by current economic problems. Such voters are disproportionately likely to be college-educated whites and it is here that Democrats have been demonstrating unusual strength. More broadly, the lack of Democratic support among working class (noncollege) voters is striking. Democrats lose among all working class voters by 11 points, but carry the college-educated by 23 points. This is less a class gap than a yawning chasm. It is difficult to avoid the conclusion that Democrats’ emphasis on social and democracy issues, while catnip to some socially liberal, educated voters, leaves many working class and Hispanic voters cold. Their concerns are more mundane and economically-driven. This is despite the fact that many of these voters are in favor of moderate abortion rights and gun control and disapprove of the January 6th events. But these issues are just not salient for them in the way they are for the Democrats’ educated and most fervent supporters.” • I really hate education as a proxy for class (since it conceals subclasses like the adjunct precariat, clearly working class). But interesting, especially since Teixeira was so instrumental in bringing this sorry state of affairs about.
Bharat’s nasal vaccine, BBV154:
For those still confused, BBIL has a licensing agreement with Precision Virologics for the development and marketing of BBV154 Intranasal. Precision Virologics gets US, Japan, Europe, BBIL gets the rest of the world. Recently BBIL finished Phase 3, not a peep from PV. https://t.co/VSMGUMENUp
— Pdr (@pdrpuff1) June 24, 2022
“Op-Ed: New COVID variants like BA.5 are dominating us — we can do more to prevent this” [Eric Topol, Los Angeles Times]. “The CDC has failed to warn Americans about the high risk of BA.5 spread, which can be mitigated to a significant extent by use of high-quality masks, physical distancing, ventilation, air filtration and booster vaccines…. The “leakiness” of current vaccines and boosters for preventing transmission can be patched up by nasal spray vaccines, for which three candidates are in late-stage randomized clinical trials. Such vaccines achieve mucosal immunity, protecting against the entry of the virus into our upper airway, which shots are incapable of achieving for any durable basis, especially as the virus has evolved. Nasal sprays, like a variant-proof vaccine, deserve an Operation Warp Speed-like program to accelerate their success,” • They deserved it in January 2021, but the molasses-brained Biden Administration didn’t even consider it. (Presumably Klain, Fauci, and/or Zients made this decision for Biden. Klain and Fauci are, naturally, still in power.)
“Preventing Airborne Spread of Covid-19 and Other Respiratory Diseases” [Public Health]. “In the big picture, the importance of improving air quality goes far beyond this pandemic. Good ventilation and filtration could provide a critical line of defense against the seasonal colds that routinely tear through schools and workplaces every winter, as well as toxic pollutants from industrial sources or natural disasters like wildfires. The Center for Health Security’s schools report calls for the creation of a federal task force to tackle this issue, and in mid-March, the Biden administration announced the Clean Air in Buildings Challenge, which aims to combat the spread of infection through improved ventilation. Gronvall sees a historic opportunity for course correction after decades of ignoring airborne sources of health risk. ‘COVID has really demonstrated that we need to pay more attention to the air we breathe,’ she says.” • Recapitulates how droplet dogma took place, as well.
Maskstravaganza: It’s hard to read this thread and conclude anything other than that the Biden Administration was (and is) not merely neglectful of masking, but actively malevolent towards it:
Fun fact 6 – thanks to domestic mask manufacturers, the USG was able to declare an end to mask shortages in April 2021. Bonus fact – the USG won’t explain why they left a ban in place to prevent manufacturers from being able to reach consumers online. https://t.co/GmR1leTUxe https://t.co/Q9kbQ0WA5E pic.twitter.com/ifkRMiSGNz
— Nicolas Smit (@PPEtoheros) July 14, 2022
Plenty of other “Fun Facts” on that thread…. s
What no one seems to want to talk about is the frequency/the constant bombardment of new variants.
To do so would be to admit that there is no scientific way to keep up or stay ahead. And that protecting ourselves & others requires us to do something ourselves. /end
— Andy Slavitt 💙💛 (@ASlavitt) July 13, 2022
Maskstravaganza: Once again, masks in schools prevent infection:
In February the government of Alberta had access to the data that is made public here. It’s damning. Schools are hubs of Covid infections. Cases are spread from schools to community. Children’s risk of hospitalization keeps increasing in each wave. https://t.co/gl0nnkScVu
— Diego Bassani, PhD (@DGBassani) July 14, 2022
If you missed it, here’s a post on my queasiness with CDC numbers, especially case count, which I (still) consider most important, despite what Walensky’s psychos at CDC who invented “community levels” think. But these are the numbers we have.
Case count for the United States:
I’m gonna need a bigger chart. If you accept the factor of six calcution, Biden has managed to beat his previous record, set last January when Omicron took off, good job. It’s starting to feel like the train is rolling. Let’s see what next week brings. There was a weird, plateau-like “fiddling and diddling” stage before the Omicron explosion, too. This conjuncture feels the same. Under the hood the BA.4/BA.5 are making up a greater and greater proportion of cases. Remember that cases are undercounted, one source saying by a factor of six, Gottlieb thinking we only pick up one in seven or eight.) Hence, I take the case count and multiply it by six to approximate the real level of cases, and draw the DNC-blue “Biden Line” at that point. The previous count was ~126,000. Today, it’s ~137,000 and 137,000 * 6 = a Biden line at 822,000 per day. That’s rather a lot of cases per day, when you think about it. At least we have confirmation that the extraordinary mass of case anecdotes we’ve seen have a basis in reality. (Remember these data points are weekly averages, so daily fluctuations are smoothed out.) The black “Fauci Line” is a counter to triumphalism, since it compares current levels to past crises.
Regional case count for four weeks:
Now the South and West.
Florida and Texas, still trading places.
Unsurprising, I suppose, that the large states (Texas, Florida; California) would have the largest absolute numbers. But now, Washington joins the party.That’s a big jump. Data problems?
10.0%, now double digits. Yikes. Looks like a lot of people came back from the Fourth of July barbecue hacking and wheezing. The Covid train always leaves on time! (I also wonder if there’s a Keynesian Beauty Contest effect, here; that is, if people encounter a sympotomatic person, whether in their social circle or in normal activity, they are more likely to get a test, because they believe (correctly) that it’s more likely they will be infected. What we are seeing here is the steepest and largest acceleration of positivity on Walgreen’s chart.
NOTE: I shall most certainly not be using the CDC’s new “Community Level” metric. Because CDC has combined a leading indicator (cases) with a lagging one (hospitalization) their new metric is a poor warning sign of a surge, and a poor way to assess personal risk. In addition, Covid is a disease you don’t want to get. Even if you are not hospitalized, you can suffer from Long Covid, vascular issues, and neurological issues. For these reasons, case counts — known to be underestimated, due to home test kits — deserve to stand alone as a number to be tracked, no matter how much the political operatives in CDC leadership would like to obfuscate it. That the “green map” (which Topol calls a “capitulation” and a “deception”) is still up and being taken seriously verges on the criminal. Use the community transmission immediately below.
Status quo, i.e. it’s a not-over pandemic.
Lambert here: After the move from the CDC to the laughingly named ‘https://healthdata.gov,” this notice appeared: “Effective June 22, 2022, the Community Profile Report will only be updated twice a week, on Wednesdays and Fridays.” Hence, the “NOT UPDATED”s; my bad. So now the administration has belatedly come to the realization that we’re in a BA.5 surge, and yet essential data for making our personal risk assessment is only available twice a week. What’s the over/under on whether they actually deliver tomorrow?
NOT UPDATED Rapid Riser data, by county (CDC), July 7:
Previous Rapid Riser data:
NOT UPDATED Hospitalization data, by state (CDC), July 7:
Lambert here: It’s beyond frustrating how slow the variant data is. I looked for more charts: California doesn’t to a BA.4/BA.5 breakdown. New York does but it, too, is on a molasses-like two-week cycle. Does nobody in the public health establishment get a promotion for tracking variants? Are there no grants? Is there a single lab that does this work, and everybody gets the results from them? Additional sources from readers welcome [grinds teeth, bangs head on desk].
NOT UPDATED Variant data, national (Walgreens), June 30:
NOT UPDATED Variant data, national (CDC), June 25:
BA.5 moving along nicely.
• “Why the Omicron offshoot BA.5 is a big deal” [CNN]. “After the Omicron tidal wave washed over the United States in January and the smaller rise in cases in the spring caused by the BA.2 subvariant, it might have seemed like the coronavirus could be ignored for a while. After all, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated in December that nearly all Americans had been vaccinated or have antibodies from a past infection. Surely all that immunity bought some breathing room. But suddenly, many people who had recovered from Covid-19 as recently as March or April found themselves exhausted, coughing and staring at two red lines on a rapid test. How could this be happening again — and so soon? The culprit this time is yet another Omicron offshoot, BA.5. It has three key mutations in its spike protein that make it both better at infecting our cells and more adept at slipping past our immune defenses.
In just over two months, BA.5 outcompeted its predecessors to become the dominant cause of Covid-19 in the United States.” • Hard to believe that CDC could be outmaneuvered, but here we are.
Wastewater data (CDC), Jun 25, 2022 – Jul 09, 2022:
Lots of orange, more red. Not good. This chart works a bit like rapid riser counties: “This metric shows whether SARS-CoV-2 levels at a site are currently higher or lower than past historical levels at the same site. 0% means levels are the lowest they have been at the site; 100% means levels are the highest they have been at the site.” So, there’s a bunch of red dots on the West Coast. That’s 100%, so that means “levels are the highest they’ve ever been.” Not broken down by variant, CDC, good job.
Death rate (Our World in Data):
1,046,613. Rising. I have added an anti-triumphalist Fauci Line. It’s nice that for deaths I have a nice, simple, daily chart that just keeps chugging along, unlike everything else CDC and the White House are screwing up or letting go dark, good job.
Employment Situation: “United States Initial Jobless Claims” [Trading Economics]. “The number of Americans filing new claims for unemployment benefits increased by 9 thousand to 244 thousand the week that ended July 9th, the highest since November 2021 as more companies announce job cuts amid economic uncertainty. Figures compare to market expectations of 235 thousand.”
Inflation: “United States Producer Price Inflation MoM” [Trading Economics]. “Producer prices for final demand in the US jumped 1.1% month-over-month in June of 2022, the most in three months and above market forecasts of 0.8%. Goods prices jumped 2.4%, much higher than 1.4% in May, with over half of the increase due to an 18.5% rise in gasoline prices. The indexes for diesel fuel, electric power, residential natural gas, motor vehicles and equipment, and processed young chickens also moved higher. Services cost rose 0.4%, slightly less than 0.6% in May, and mainly due to higher margins for food and alcohol retailing (3.8%). Prices for machinery and equipment wholesaling, outpatient care, transportation of passengers, guestroom rental, and hospital inpatient care also increased. Year-on-year, producer inflation accelerated to 11.3%, the largest increase since a record 11.6% in March.”
Today’s Fear & Greed Index: 23 Extreme Fear (previous close: 23 Extreme Fear) [CNN]. One week ago: 27 (Fear). (0 is Extreme Fear; 100 is Extreme Greed). Last updated Jul 12 at 12:53 PM EDT.
Happy Bastille Day (although I was today years old when I learned “Liberty Leading the People” commemorates the French Revolution of 1830, not of 1789):
— Anna Mazzotta Fine Art Royal College of Art (@AnnaMazzotta9) July 13, 2022
And speaking of anachronism:
Liberty Leading the People aka True Pussy Riot" 😻 Happy 14 July, dear French friends 🇫🇷
Allons chatons de la Patrie
Le jour de gloire est arrivé! 🎼
At the painting, the Cat throws away a gun and dances with the banner to make people laugh out loud and stop killing each other… pic.twitter.com/5p5imTcZ1s
— FatCatArt (@FatCatArtRu) July 14, 2022
Our Famously Free Press
“Unimaginable abortion stories will become more common. Is American journalism ready?” [Nieman Labs]. “In America after the end of Roe v. Wade, one brave source on the record in the final story will often be the best we can get. Obviously, reporters and editors must make sure that their reporting is accurate and true! But those who believe that the end of legal abortion in many states is newsworthy will need to figure out how to report and publish these stories with a few more constraints than they’d prefer. If performing or receiving an abortion now counts as activism, well, then journalists will need to be okay quoting “activists,” unless they only want to tell the anti-abortion movement’s side. Countless abortion stories will never be told at all. It won’t be because they’re lies. It will be because telling them is too risky, because patients and doctors and staffers and volunteers will face arrest for coming forward.”
BoJo on the NHS:
Don't worry, the US will have company soon pic.twitter.com/JLcI85vagK
— onisillos (@onisillos) July 14, 2022
“3.1- The Three Estates” (podcast) [Mike Duncan, Revolutions]. • I highly recommend Duncan’s “Revolutions” podcast, which begins with the English Civil War in 1642; you have to conclude that Revolutions are a regular featuire of human affairs.
“Why We Celebrate the Storming of the Bastille” [Tribune]. “On the 14th Louis XVI answered the envoys of the Assembly that it was impossible for the events in Paris to have been the result of orders given the troops. What then was the king’s plan? Perhaps, in order to reassure his conscience, he had systematically refused to foresee the possible course of events. Perhaps he imagined that Paris, laid low by the mere presence of a vast military apparatus, would cease to be a tumultuous aid and the latter, feeling the dead weight of the immobilised capital, would walk uncertainly and stumblingly, ready to fall at the least shock. The king, warned by the events of the 14th, learned that he had to take the force of the revolution into account. He would exercise cunning against it or would call foreign armies against it, but from that day forward he renounced any form of direct aggression, any declared offensive. The Assembly, having still to foil intrigues but no longer having to fear or repel royal force, was able to undertake a fight against another great power of the past, the church. At the same time that it thus liberated the National Assembly, the events of 14 July made the people aware for the first time of its strength and conscious of its role in Paris. The Assembly remained important. During these stormy days the permanent committee of electors deputised them, and the Parisian revolution only felt itself truly strong and legitimate through its contact with the national revolution. What is more, the assembly itself had set a noble example of firmness and even of heroism. Its Tennis Court Oath, its serene and invincible resistance after the session of 23 June, had electrified hearts and the most intrepid of Paris’ combatants had no other ambition than that of showing themselves to be worthy of the bourgeois revolutionaries who, without weapons and solely through the force of right and courage, had emerged victorious. It is nonetheless true that alone and without the assistance of the people of Paris the National Assembly would have ended up succumbing. And so the Revolution, which until then had had but one base, one centre: the Assembly, from that point on had two corresponding centres, the Assembly and the people of Paris.”
“A Guide to the French Revolution” [Jacobin]. “In 1856, French sociologist Alexis de Tocqueville reviewed the so-called ‘grievance books‘ — lists of demands made by the various social layers of France in anticipation of the Estates-General, the assembly that would undermine Louis XVI’s reign and lead ultimately to revolution. What he discovered startled him. ‘When I came to gather all the individual wishes, with a sense of terror I realized that their demands were for the wholesale and systematic abolition of all the laws and all the current practices in the country. Straightaway I saw that the issue here was one of the most extensive and dangerous revolutions ever observed in the world.'” • I wonder what a grievance book would look like today. Or if such a thing could even exist.
News of the Wired
Perhaps I will feel more wired in a few minutes. UPDATE I remain unwired.
Contact information for plants: Readers, feel free to contact me at lambert [UNDERSCORE] strether [DOT] corrente [AT] yahoo [DOT] com, to (a) find out how to send me a check if you are allergic to PayPal and (b) to find out how to send me images of plants. Vegetables are fine! Fungi and coral are deemed to be honorary plants! If you want your handle to appear as a credit, please place it at the start of your mail in parentheses: (thus). Otherwise, I will anonymize by using your initials. See the previous Water Cooler (with plant) here. From TH:
TH writes: “Last Thursday (6/16), a friend of mine wanted to buy some plants, so invited me along for her first visit to a popular nursery in our neck of the woods (well, more my neck than hers), Roger’s Gardens in Newport Beach (CA). She’s in Inglewood (Los Angeles), so it was a bit of a trek for her. I has a good reputation and she has wanted to visit it for a long time. So these Bromeliads live there at the nursery until they find a nice gardener of their own, or rather, the gardener finds them.”
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