Links 7/15/2023

Bees just wanna have fungi: a review of bee associations with non-pathogenic fungi Microbiology Ecology

Genes for learning and memory are 650 million years old, study shows (press release) University of Leicester. Somewhat less readable original.

Drexel’s Second Coming Marc Rubinstein, Net Interest

Even the most populous places are pushing for US census corrections to boost funding AP


Extreme wildfires are here to stay. Can human beings really fight them? FT

US firefighters raise concerns over looming pay cut Al Jazeera

* * *

Self-gluing climate mob cement themselves to airport taxiways in Hamburg and Düsseldorf, block key intersections in 26 German cities because this will stop emissions eugyppius: a plague chronicle (Furzy Mouse).

* * *

How fast are the seas rising? Jeff Masters, Yale Climate Connection. Pleased to see Jeff Masters here; I far preferred Weather Underground before it was dissolved in IBM’s digestive fluids.

Toward Environmental Justice: Key Concepts JSTOR Daily

Fertilizer use could be reduced with nature-based farming, shows major study The Dairy Site

Can mushrooms prevent mega fires? WaPo


Smile Nazis (original, via). See the first paragraph of the “Dear Associate” letter:

No “allegedly” about it. Not even Bud from Legal would insist on that.

Praise for Dr. Monica Gandhi Science-Based Medicine. The deck: “Ideally, leaders of American medicine would have had the courage to correct misinformation spread by their fellow doctors. At a bare minimum, they didn’t have to lavish praise on a doctor who repeatedly polluted our COVID landscape with obvious misinformation and falsely pacified people the worst was over, when in fact the worst was yet to come.”

* * *

Early indicators hint at US COVID-19 uptick Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy. As NC readers have known for weeks.

* * *

Exploring the Differences in the Response of SARS-CoV-2 Delta and Omicron to Ultraviolet Radiation Environmental Science & Technology. From the Abstract: “One method that can help slow the spread of coronaviruses is disinfection with UV light. The Delta and Omicron variants of the COVID-19 virus (SARS-CoV-2) have come to dominate the later stages of the pandemic due to their higher rates of transmission. In this work, it is shown that a 17% higher UV254 dose is required for the disinfection of Delta and Omicron variants when compared to the ancestral strain of SARS-CoV-2.” I don’t much like the concept of turning the death ray UV up or down depending on the variant du jour, though no doubt Bob Wachter would enjoy adding that to his 25-step algorithm. PMC’s do love them their homework.

Northwestern Medicine has treated 4,000 long COVID-19 patients: Here’s what it has learned Becker’s Hospital Review. July 13. Weirdly, Nature’s Long Covid salvo of that same week is not mentioned. The Northwestern study looks good to me, but it is a preprint from May.

Japan COVID patient numbers rise for 8th straight week The Mainichi. From a low baseline, to be sure. Nevertheless:


Chinese man convicted for building bridge ignites public debate over judicial power South China Morning Post

China needs to ‘proactively defend’ against spies, state security minister says South China Morning Post

ASEAN, China agree on guidelines to accelerate South China Sea code of conduct negotiations Channel News Asia

At ASEAN, US calls for preserving ‘freedom of navigation’ in South China Sea Anadolu Agency

European Disunion

The Fires that Burn in France Are About Its Colonial Legacy People’s Democracy

New Not-So-Cold War

Reservists Set to Deploy for Europe NATO Mission Following New Biden Order Commentary:

Reserve troops who may be called up for Europe duty would serve ‘administrative’ functions, Kirby says Politico. “The kind of enabling functions that you need to support and sustain a large troop presence for a long time.”

* * *

A Ukrainian commander describes the grueling battle against dug-in Russian forces. NYT. “Troops with the 36th Marine Brigade have been the tip of the spear in Ukraine’s counteroffensive and have advanced about five miles into a bulge into Russian lines in southern Ukraine.” IOW, not even into Russia’s first of three lines of defense.

* * *

Nato isn’t defending Ukraine. It’s stabbing it in the back Middle East Eye

South of the Border

Peru vows to use only legitimate force during upcoming protests Reuters

Guatemala election run-off: Chaos after key party suspended Al Jazeera

Always look in the well London Review of Books

The Battle for Colombia New Left Review

How northern Mexico became a climate migration destination High Country News

Biden Administration

Quick Read: Walled Garden America Matt Stoller, BIG but FTC’s Appeal Denied as Microsoft Weighs Potential CMA Solution for Activision Blizzard Merger IGN


Kamala Harris’ latest gaffe sparks wild conspiracy theories as she claims Biden administration wants to reduce POPULATION instead of pollution Daily Mail. Transcript. At 17:19:

The whole video is worth watching, or at least a larger chunk of it. I’m not encouraged for Harris’s Presidential prospects, (Kinsley) gaffe or no.

Joe Biden’s $72mn fundraising haul eclipses Trump and DeSantis efforts FT

RFK Jr claims Biden troop mobilization is prep for ‘ground war with Russia’ FOX

* * *

DeSantis asking for my vote:

CDC, HHS prep for commercialization of COVID vaccines Becker’s Hospital Review

The walls are closing in on the Biden White House Sean Hannity, FOX. A review of liberals sticking in the shiv.

Digital Watch

The Last Social Network Ed Zitron, The Last Social Network. “Social media companies have been trying to recreate the magic of Facebook’s endless revenues without realizing that the only way to create the rotten economics of Meta’s stock is to abuse the user into submission.”

Meta Threads engagement has dropped off since red-hot debut, tracking firms say CNBC

Threads Emerge Tools. A software teardown. “Threads team wanted to move fast and took whatever code it could from Instagram and shoved it where it needed to go.”

* * *

“Artificial Intelligence Will Destroy Truth” (interview) Amitai Etzioni, Der Spiegel (Furzy Mouse).

AI’s dark in-joke ABC Australia. Not only does AI = BS, AI = cheating. Very profitable, and perfectly in line with Silicon Valley values. So it’s a two-fer.

Our Famously Free Press

Are Authorities Using the Internet to Sap Our Instinct for Freedom? Matt Taibbi, Racket News. Well worth a read.

B-a-a-a-d Banks

Large US banks reap bumper profits on Federal Reserve rate rises FT. Why, it’s almost as if that’s the object of the exercise….

Groves of Academe

California Adopts New Mathematics Framework Focused on Equity and Social Justice The Observer

Supply Chain

The Problem of Surge Capacity RAND

Sports Desk

Major League Cricket lays strong foundation in Texas debut: ‘Cricket’s American dream’ Dallas Morning News. Reminiscing:

Imperial Collapse Watch

Family says missing 14-year-old girl found in Camp Pendleton barracks sold for sex ABC7

Realignment and Legitimacy

Americans are widely pessimistic about democracy in the United States, an AP-NORC poll finds AP

Class Warfare

Hollywood Studios’ WGA Strike Endgame Is To Let Writers Go Broke Before Resuming Talks In Fall Deadline

Inside the Actors Strike Press Apocalypse: “The Celebrity Factory Has Shut Down” Vanity Fair

Profit-Driven Systems Are Driving Us To Our Doom Caitlyn Johnstone

Mating Games Atmos

Antidote du jour (via):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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About Lambert Strether

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


  1. Antifa

    (melody borrowed from Act Naturally as performed by The Beatles)

    They wanna put me in the movies
    They only need some mug shots of my face
    A hundred bucks and they’ll forever own me
    A human purchased for their database

    Well they say they don’t need carpenters or actors
    When CGI can fill the silver screen
    No wardrobe and no cameras and no writers
    Just a copy-paste AI machine

    The studios think films are merely pixels
    Colored dots arranged upon a screen
    No chemistry no genius no emotion
    The algorithms flesh out every scene

    (musical interlude)

    We have to strike because our industry is broken
    All profits flow to owners and execs
    Every year they split up thirty billion
    But no one out here’s getting any checks

    There’s residuals there’s a better share from streaming
    Who owns our faces needs to be agreed
    Like every labor strike that ever happens
    We’re out here fighting corporate greed

    Well I hope you get to see us in the movies
    And the TV shows you stream on your TV
    The studios won’t share the cash we earn them
    So we’re all out here on strike — quite naturally

  2. semper loquitur

    Kamala the Klown just keeps on giving:

    More WORD SALAD?! VP Kamala Harris BUTCHERS Explanation Of AI

    The Hill Jul 13, 2023

    Briahna Joy Gray and Robby Soave react to Vice President Kamala Harris’ explanation of Artificial Intelligence

    “AI is kind of a fancy thing. First of all, it’s two letters…”

    I’d set my coffee down before listening.

    1. lambert strether

      I rarely watch videos, but that one is worth it. I thought I was mentally prepared, but I wasn’t. Harris is a world-class goofball.

      1. The Rev Kev

        Hey, that could be the future President of the United States that you are talking about. All it would take would be one stroke, one ruptured brain aneurysm or even a fall down a flight of stairs on Biden’s part and there would be Kamala with one hand on a bible and her other raised in the air.

          1. The Rev Kev

            If people were at a meeting with Kamala, I suspect that most of the time their bodies would be fighting to get oxygen to their brain

            1. Randall Flagg

              I lose IQ points every time I listen to her and the danger is, I don’t have that many to start with going in…

              1. Wukchumni

                She raises most everybody else’s IQ every time she strangles the English language utilizing only her vocal cords.


            2. Louis Fyne

              I bet that no, Kamala purged the competent people fromher inner circle years ago. She is the smartest person her mèetings.

              Politicans keep aides based on loyalty, not on raw intelligence

          2. NotTimothyGeithner

            She’s surrounded with Clintonistas. I figure they are the degenerate successors of Carville and Begala. The meetings are likely just throwing around political “truisms” and discussions about the Bartlett administration.

            If my memory is correct, Zelensky brought up nukes after meeting Harris early last year.

            1. The Rev Kev

              You remember that correctly and it was just before the outbreak of the war. It does make you wonder if she was the messenger from Biden to tell Zelensky to start talking about nukes after arranging with all those other leaders not to shut him down or to criticize him about talking about them.

            2. Mark Gisleson

              I think you have that wrong. HRC’s problems stemmed from ousting the Begalas and Carvilles (not a fan of them, but they did help Bill a lot).

              Harris is surrounded by Clintonists, but hers not his.

              Harris is doomed. Between Joe’s staff undermining her and HRC’s folks helping her, she doesn’t have a chance.*

              *This, of course, could be easily resolved if Harris had any native political skills. As I said, doomed.

          3. Pat

            Perfectly comfortable or in a rage.
            Having seen author but really stealth candidate Harris’ staff in action…well let’s just say that Clinton’s staff were less fanatical about making sure things were perfect for their charge. They were equally split between true believers that she was the second coming and terrified professionals. The bubble was intense.
            Let’s just say the huge staff turnover was no surprise and it is not because minutes in her presence opens doors.

        1. Wukchumni

          {ran her speech through Davy Jones Locker language converter}

          Ye know, when Cap’n Biden ‘n I took cabin, we set an ambitious goal. Aye, scallywags said, “That can’t be done.” We said, “Well, ye know wha’? We believe in dreamin’ wit’ ambition ‘n then seein’ it thorough.

          ”’n so, we set an ambitious goal t’ cut our greenhouse gas emissions in half by 2030 ‘n t’ reach net-naught emissions by 2050. The investment we be announcin’ today will help us t’ achieve these goals, ‘n ’twill do so much more, ’cause reckon also about the impact on nah only the local economy, nah only on an investment in the entrepreneurs ‘n innovators from ‘n in the community. Reckon about the impact on somethin’ like public health.

          When we invest in swab energy ‘n electric vehicles ‘n reduce population [pollution], more o’ our sprogs can breathe swab air ‘n drink swab water. (Applause.)

        2. semper loquitur

          Heck, a particularly lascivious episode of Teen Idol would put “Sniffy Joe” away at this point.

      2. semper loquitur

        Honestly, I only made it about 12 seconds in. It’s the literal definition of “painfully funny”. You’re giggling and cramping up with apprehension at the same time.

        1. Mildred Montana

          Nobody should be crucified for simply mis-speaking. Happens all the time to all of us.

          What I found more telling was that 𝘴𝘩𝘦 𝘥𝘪𝘥 𝘯𝘰𝘵 𝘪𝘮𝘮𝘦𝘥𝘪𝘢𝘵𝘦𝘭𝘺 𝘤𝘰𝘳𝘳𝘦𝘤𝘵 𝘩𝘦𝘳𝘴𝘦𝘭𝘧. In fact she didn’t correct herself at all, as if she had no idea what she was saying. Making me wonder if the words “reduce population” (instead of “pollution”) were actually in her prepared notes.

          The male co-host did the hard work of squeezing her word salad on to the MSM menu: “I think she is talking about misinformation, and how we, the gatekeepers of society and protectors of truth can prevent people from seeking out bad information.”

          “We” he does not define. But nevertheless he deserves a raise, if only for trying to make sense out of nonsense.

          1. semper loquitur

            “Nobody should be crucified for simply mis-speaking. Happens all the time to all of us.”

            Sorry, her long trend of verbal miscarriages don’t happen to me ever. Misspeak? Sure. Vomit up a string of nebulous phrases and dull-minded generalities as if piling up enough lead will suddenly yield gold? Then do it weekly on international television? Not me.

            She obviously has no idea what she is talking about. She misspeaks because she is trying to do it all on the fly. I’ve never seen her speak coherently. Not once.

            As mentioned in a comment above, she has doubtless purged or driven away anyone beyond the basest political operators. Then she ignores them as well. Plus, she is pond s(um. So there’s that.

            1. JBird4049

              I have seen her speak, not good, never that, but competently, but that was when she was in California. Something happened between living in Sacramento and then Washington. Her speeches have degenerated. Did she get Covid?

              If I dared, I would listen to her speeches over three, four, or five years to check my memories and to see the pattern of what, where, and when.

                1. ambrit

                  If he does, don’t tell his insurance company. That would tick a big box for “suicidal tendencies.”

                  1. rowlf

                    I can’t find the episode, but ages ago Jon Stewart had a sketch on the Daily Show were he brought out a supposed college intern who had been assigned by the show to watch some news channel or something (Maybe cable Fox news, now-a-days it could be any US channel) for a month and out walks a very old man in diminished condition to answer questions.

                    At the end the young college intern after being asked if he could do more research pleads “Just kill me”.

                    (I think I had cable from 2001 – 2010 mostly for the internet access)

        1. juno mas

          Well, then, she likely was hiding in the WH Library, because she surely doesn’t read.

            1. Martin Oline

              I think the weapon used in the library was a pipe. One report said the coke was yellowish in color, but never revealed whether it was cocaine hydrochloride or crack cocaine. Crack would indicate the owner was a resident of the White House as no visitor is going to be smoking crack in the bathrooms.

              1. ambrit

                Does the White House have a hospitality suite, like back in the days of the Clinton Crime Family living there? That’s where I would expect items of that sort to be found.
                It’s a shame it wasn’t opium found. Then we could blame it on the Chinese.

  3. Wæsfjord

    re:reserve troops called up

    According to that Politico article, Putin tried to invade Poland:

    “The U.S. grew its presence in Europe by about 20,000 troops, including new rotations of 10,000 troops in Poland, after Russian President Vladimir Putin sought to seize the country, amounting to a total of over 100,000 troops.”

    Are we getting the media we deserve?

    1. Cassandra

      This is accurate if you define Ukraine as part of Poland, which (it seems) a non-trivial portion of Poland does.

    2. digi_owl

      Back when it kicked off, the MSM take seemed to imply this being a resurgent red army poised to march all the way to the Atlantic if not stopped in Ukraine.

  4. griffen

    Class warfare entry, July 2023. Powerball lottery is pushing higher, still time to buy that winning ticket before the drawing tonight! $875 million, think of all the things you would do and the places you will go. And meet all those cousins you never knew existed! ( sarc )

    I’d find a place to hole up for the next 30 years myself. That money buys a lot of fortress and solitude, that’s my thought.

    1. Wukchumni

      He always buys while others walk
      He acts while other men just balk
      They say its winner who takes all
      And he strikes it rich playing Powerball

      He knows the meaning of success
      His needs are more so he needs excess
      He looks at this world and once in all
      Somebody strikes it rich playing Powerball

      Any geegaw he wants, he’ll get
      He will break anything without regret

      His hopes of winning are all gone
      His fight goes on, and on, and on.
      But he thinks that the fight is worth it all
      So he buys for next week’s Powerball…

      Thunderball, by Tom Jones

    2. Randall Flagg

      With winning that jackpot, one could become the ultimate pepper, bunker up in the hinterlands and ride out the other Jackpot that appears to be coming soon to a society near you…

      1. jo6pac

        My thought also but at this time my little truck is broke so I can’t get to a store.

        1. jhallc

          I’m really surprised they haven’t starting selling Powerball tickets online, no truck required. Would hurt a lot of convenience store and gas station owners for sure. Also the ability to hack the system would be just to much for folks to ignore.

        2. griffen

          I work remotely, and a few people can get them via an app in Illinois I think? Of course in 2023, there’s an app. It’s like Ubik.

    3. QuarterBack

      A comedian, whose name I unfortunately can’t remember, once said.

      “The odds of winning the lottery are so low that they are statistically the same whether you buy a ticket or not. So, I never buy a ticket, but I always check the paper to see if I won.

        1. Amfortas the hippie

          or just send every american a check.
          call it a dividend…or just recompense for putting up with all the nonsense all these years.

            1. JBird4049

              Actually, they owe you $13,440 for this year, if you worked. Using back of the envelope counting, that would be $8,300 yearly or just under $700 monthly to every single American whether they are working or not.

              Before 1975, all increases in inflation and productivity (how much one can create or produce) were matched by increases in wages. After 1975, all increases in productivity, and increases in inflation were always matched as well, went to the top 1%. That is almost fifty years of thievery.

              They get wealthier every year while most Americans tread water or start to drown. We are ruled by vampires, yes we are.

  5. upstater

    COVID Anecdata:

    My brother tested positive for COVID July 2. He repairs medical equipment in hospitals and clinics and quit masking last year, unless told otherwise. Since he has asthma he got an antiviral, molnupirvir on July 3. His employer’s medical department said he was allowed 5 sick days, then he should return to work and mask for 5 more days (cured! success!). If he needed more than 5 days he’d have to “apply for short term disability”. Last Tuesday was 5 working days. He still tested positive on Tuesday. I strongly advised him not to work until he tested negative. He went to work Wednesday accepting corporate advice and rejecting brotherly advice! “I’m following CDC guidelines, 5 days at home and 5 days masking”. WTF! He repairs equipment at hospitals and clinics. That is probably how, why and where he got it. Now, even though he’s masking, he’s still shedding virus and can infect people in hospitals. But this is corporate policy and CDC guidelines. This is profound misinformation because of the economy and lost profits. They are killing people, knowingly and intentionally.

      1. griffen

        Best wishes on it. I had both eyes corrected for that as of late 2022. The vision improvement has been remarkable and welcome, not without costs to state the obvious. I mean today my vision is basically 20/20 and can see at a reasonable, far distance again, and the readers for work or viewing daily at NC are just so cheap.

        1. Carla

          To clarify, I’m terrified of being in the hospital, even for an outpatient procedure — not terrified of the surgery.

          My last booster was the bivalent last fall. With what I’ve read since, I’m not sure the shots don’t do as much harm as good at this point.

          1. griffen

            Yeah I’m following. To add some clarity, my interactions with the nurse and then for local anesthesia and waiting until my turn; my small area in the “soon to be wheeled in” was curtained off and could not really see on either side. It did seem like precautions were being taken, and my recovery at home after each instance went fairly well. Mind you that’s specific to the eyesight and being tasked with drops upon drops after surgery.

          2. GramSci

            Good luck, Carla. Cataract surgery was a godsend for Juana, but that was before the Big C.

          3. kareninca

            If (if! if! if!) your doctor is okay with it, you could use loads of Xlear nasal spray and take a claritin before going in (and another claritin when you get home)(and keep snorting the spray). It would improve your covid odds. I guess a question is whether claritin affects eye tissues in a way that would increase surgery problems.

            1. Carla

              Many thanks griffen, GramSci and kareninca for your replies, your suggestions, and your concern. Much appreciated.

              1. Acacia

                Had this surgery twice. The improvement in vision was just astonishing.

                I would amplify what kareninca and others have said, above. I’ve also used Xlear and would think there should be no problem at all with that as well as claritin, though check with the surgeon, of course.

                Standard procedure during the operation is that the doctor and all nurses will be masked. They will cover your face, except for the eye, and use povidone-iodine antiseptic. The whole thing is done in 30 mins. The time to prep is short, and you can usually change clothes and leave the hospital quickly. I would think exposure to questionable air is limited.

                Hope it all goes smoothly for you.

      2. jhallc

        Went in for a once every 10 year visit for a roto-Rooteroscopy last week. Not a mask in sight from other patients in waiting area or staff, except for the doctor who had one around his neck. When he saw me in mine he pulled his N95 up before coming over to the gurney. Such is the way of the world now. Keeping my fingers crossed these days.

      3. Alice X

        I, too, was terrified but finally went in and said: I’m ready. The Dr. said my vision was worse than my cataracts so he’s sent me to a cornea specialist for a second opinion. Gasp!

      4. Brunches with Cats

        Same here, both eyes skedded in August, surgery to take place at small hospital in Upstate NY. My ride starts her fall teachers’ orientation at the same time. Fortunately, her kids won’t have started school yet (whole family has had COVID multiple times).

        Seriously thinking of getting a booster early next week, also long “overdue.”

          1. Brunches with Cats

            Thanks, Cassandra. I vaguely recall seeing that study, probably on NC. Not sure it’s still valid, given that the variants are constantly mutating, and vaccine research is ongoing. Not that I figure the All-New-and-Improved shots anticipated for release this fall will fare much better in clinical trials, but then, I wasn’t expecting an equivalent of being hermetically sealed. Even a 20-percent efficacy rate for only a few weeks offers some additional protection, and hopefully there won’t be any side effects (had first two jabs, plus two boosters, all with nothing but a sore arm for a day or two). So I probably will do it. And it will be covered by Medicare.

            It was at least encouraging to see that the opthalmologist was masked the entire time I was in her office (staff, not so much). I have one last pre-op eval next week. COVID protocol is on my list of questions.

        1. Lambert Strether Post author

          > Seriously thinking of getting a booster early next week, also long “overdue.”

          Recombinant Adjuvanted Zoster Vaccine and Reduced Risk of Coronavirus Disease 2019 Diagnosis and Hospitalization in Older Adults Journal of Infectious Diseases:

          RZV vaccination was associated with a 16% lower risk of COVID-19 diagnosis and 32% lower risk of hospitalization. Further study of vaccine-induced nonspecific immunity for potential attenuation of future pandemics is warranted.

          In this case, RSV = Shingrix (there are other shingles vaccines that are not RSV).

          16%/32% aren’t 100%, but they’re not negligible, either. Also, shingles are just bad. (CDC recommends only for over 50.)

          I view this as layered protection, but for vax :-)

          1. Brunches with Cats

            Very interesting, thanks for that!

            Followed links for an hour+ leading to several other studies of vaccine-induced nonspecific immunity. TB vaccine may be another, although you’re not likely to find it in the USA, which systematically wiped out the source of TB, i.e., infected milk. Regular old flu shot also a speculative contributor. Didn’t get one during lockdown, but did get it last year, after deciding against booster #3, and actually had been thinking that, between a COVID booster and a flu shot, the latter might make more sense, as it appears this area had a lot more flu than COVID last fall/winter.

            Doc did ask, at last semi-annual checkup, whether I wanted a shingles vax. I declined, but will have another op to ask during requisite pre-surgery exam. Veterans typically don’t get a choice of vax (in this region, Moderna was the only option for C19), but just did a quick check and evidently Shingrix is all there is here in USA.

            Bottom line: A healthy immune system is your fortress. Whodathunkit?

            NC: News You Can Use

    1. Will

      Is he allowed to mask while in a hospital? How can they know he’s doing his job properly if they can’t see him smile?

    2. earthling

      You should strongly advise him to find another employer which values specialized skills, instead of treating him like a child who wants to stay home from school.

  6. The Rev Kev

    “Inside the Actors Strike Press Apocalypse: “The Celebrity Factory Has Shut Down””

    I am beginning to wonder if it would be so bad if Hollywood imploded at this point. No, seriously. And what would replace it would be a swarm of indie productions that would hire all the electricians, carpenters, etc. that lost their jobs with the big studios. The present Hollywood is so out of touch with modern audiences that it is not even funny anymore. Look at some of the more recent disasters that they have offered us – Indiana Jones 5, The Flash, the little Mermaid, the Queen Cleopatra doco, Peter Pan and Wendy. All of them money losers for the studios and yet they keep on churning out this rubbish. The next one coming out soon is a race-swapped Snow White with a diverse seven dwarfs, only one of which is an actually dwarf (not a joke). Most of the modern script writers don’s know their job but write to their agendas, too many actors spend their time getting into social media fights with their fans and now you have a movie that has come out about child trafficking called Sound of Freedom which is roaring to success while the Hollywood access people denigrate it and call it QAnon-adjacent. A fun fact about this film is that it was actually made 5 years ago but just now released. So what I am saying that maybe it is time that either Hollywood goes away or is scaled back to a fraction of its present size. It had just one job – entertain people – and it has failed miserably. It is getting too toxic to stay.

    1. Louis Fyne

      To be cynical, the studios want the actors and writers to be intrasigent….and actors-screenwriters are giving the studios exactly what they want.

      The strike will be used by the studios to break the unions and rein in costs.

      Both sides can pound sand as they are awful in their own ways.

      in my opinion, Disney was lost relevance amongst the current generation of under-10s. None of their characters from the past 10 years matches the popularity older characters. Politics is secondary (but of course big for the adults).

      The only property that really reasonates with kids is Frozen and Elsa is almost 15 years old. The big stars now are video game characters and YouTube celebrities (eg,MrBeast)

      1. Mark Gisleson

        Doubt I could cover a bet large enough to be interesting to you, but given stock prices and investor pressures, I don’t think soon-to-be-homeless-and-crashing-on-friends’-couches writers will feel anywhere near the pressure the C-Suite’s going to experience.

        I also have to wonder if SAG didn’t jump in for self-preservation. No promo work? No talk show interviews? I wonder if that includes political appearances. This would be a good time for actors to stop shilling for corrupt politicians.

        Seems like an awful lot more going on here than just a strike. Management’s best talking point seems to be that streaming is still a money loser. That’s a very interesting talking point, stock market wise.

        As for content, Big Entertainment will just acquire under-capitalized new ventures that are full to overflowing with talent and creativity, neither of which is in short supply. I remember a number of seasons when the Steinbrenner Yankees simply acquired stars by buying them instead of developing them in their farm system. A strategy that spread and did much more than just ruin pro sports : |

        1. GramSci

          «Big Entertainment will just acquire under-capitalized new ventures that are full to overflowing with talent and creativity, neither of which is in short supply.»

          But how will they monetize it? I have no authority on this topic, having not watched a Hollywood movie in a theater since Stars Wars I (or even really, online), but who’s gonna buy it? This question is not on the minds of Hollywood investors. The only question on their minds is “Who’s gonna bankroll it?”

      2. Big River Bandido

        To be cynical, the studios want the actors and writers to be intrasigent

        Did you mean indigent?

        1. juno mas

          I think he meant ‘intransigent’. Like Ukraine, the studios see it as a battle of attrition.

    2. Lexx

      Did you notice ‘Andor’ was nominated for an Emmy for Best Series? Except for among critics, the series on the Disney channel didn’t get all that much press. I watched it and told everyone I thought might be remotely interested, just how good it was starting with the writing. It had everything going for it; I could recall the wonder and tension sitting in the theater watching the very first Star Wars film in the seventies.

      It is a tired overly familiar world now and yet Tony Gilroy managed to find a way to reinvent the story with a new cast, by taking one character and fleshing out the story behind the role he comes to play. I was impressed; I didn’t think that franchise had anything left to tell us.

      Four veteran actors* gave it the gravity it needed — Diego Luna, Anton Lesser, Stellan Skarsgard, and Fiona Show, but really every performer in the cast brought their A-game. It boils down to the writing, it attracts talent, that attracts an audience and Hollywood has been serving their audiences dreck for years now, as though there was nothing left to say about our species and time on this planet… and this should worry us as much as The Empire, maybe more.

      *I almost wrote ‘three’ instead of four because for some reason Mr. Luna always seems young to me, even with the gray hairs.

      1. The Rev Kev

        I have never seen ‘Andor’ but the Critical Drinker also rates it highly which is something when you remember that the whole Star Wars franchise has been turned into a burning dumpster fire that fans don’t want to watch anymore. Here is the Critical Drinker’s take- (9:56 mins) – lots of swearing.

        I remember watching this clip a coupla months ago and it was a sign of what could have been so I link to it as it should be more widely known. Thanks for the reminder.

        1. Kouros

          Besdides Rogue One, Andor is the only other production related with Star Wars worth watching.

      2. Amfortas the hippie

        i also thought that was the best thing to come out of the franchise since “RotJ”…with the exception of Rogue One, which…IIRC…was sorta kinda independent of disney, but greenlighted by Lucas.
        i’ve watched them all(even the various animations)…wife gave me the disney streaming thing for my birthday 3(?) years ago for this purpose.
        i was 9 when the first one came out…saw it like 10 times in theaters.
        turned me on to Joseph Campbell and therefore Arthurian Romance and Comparative Mythology(hence, “Amfortas”)…so the movie that made the biggest impact on my life, hands down.

        Ewoks and Jarjar made me sad and uncomfortable, btw.

        1. ambrit

          Despair not good sir. Ewoks eventually turn into Wookiees. (Was “Wookiee” an early meta pun? It’s sort of an Acolyte or Jedi conundrum.)
          I do see Texas as being somewhat like a Wasteland just now. Where’s Galahad when you need him?

          1. Amfortas the hippie

            here in the Hidden Hermit Kingdom in the Texas Hill Country, it is indeed very hot….a much cooler 102 is the forcast high for this afternoon….but very low humidity.
            so i can get in and out of the cowboy pool…and/or run the big sprinklers on the garden beds…and be just fine.
            ac finally fixed…sort of. factory made leak in the register in the big middle room…so me and the ac guy capped that one.
            the ones in the bedrooms work like a charm, now.
            but i’m taking advantage of the cold spell(102)…and hanging at the Bar already: over did it with my workin this early am(4:30am- just a minute ago)…so i’m feeling the pain a’comin’…sitting on the bar stump is better for my back than laying around in the ac.
            salvaged 2 more bar stump candidates from the “workin on it” woodpile(logs that must be cut ere fall), and hewed them level on both ends(40″ is barstool standard)…got the sheepskins already de-fatted, and hanging on the fence from march…once i apply the thin sheet matal to the bottoms, ill wet the skins and drape them over the tops, and theyll dry out and form themselves to the top of the stumps.
            one of my Eldest’s friends is Bipolar…untreated(its Texas)…and throws furniture when he gets likkered up…but he cant throw bar stumps,lol.
            interestingly, perhaps, he seems uninterested in throwing the milk crate barstools…2 milk crates, stacked and wired together, with the seat off old cafe chairs wired to the tops.
            (waste not…)

            ramble off(for now)

            1. GramSci

              Always appreciative of your reports from the feed store and the Texas Hill Country Mission, Amfortas. Reminds me of my days representing Billionaires for Bush at the local flea markets. A few of the locals were pissed that we had suckered them, but most of the crowd was on our side. The owners of the flea market however…that was another story.

        2. NotTimothyGeithner

          Andor was sweet, but Jamelle Bouie of the nyt had a thread some time ago ripping apart Rogue One as a series of events. Andor does fix Rogue One a bit.

          On its own, Andor is better than RotJ, but Lucas stuck the landing for an unplanned trilogy. The throne room scenes are fantastic and hit the themes about growing up. Obi Wan and Yoda were raising child soldiers and ignoring their own philosophy. The prequels were rushed (the Jar Jar worked for Palpatine theory probably was true), but the sequels are just a mess with no theme.

          The actors across the board brought it. Stellan Skaarsgard and Forest Whitaker might be “the worst” parts.

      3. LN


        Maarva: Take all the money you’ve found and go and find some peace.
        Cassian: I won’t have peace. I’ll be worried about you all the time.
        Maarva: That’s just love. Nothing you can do about that. …

        It’s the story of how a revolution is started. It’s very good.

    3. Pat

      The problem is that the entities most likely to survive this are not the creative types but the bean counter types. The most creative they are is seen in the accounting. Remakes are cheap and extend ownership. New works can’t be crowd focused.
      Unfortunately the mega studios that have been produced will survive the job action. This is another area where the thing most likely to blow everything to hell (eliminating endless copyright) is the last thing that will be allowed to happen.

      1. Benny Profane

        It’s both sad and stunning to me what they did to HBO. To me, it was the most reliable go to “studio” for years. Almost everything they put out there was worth at least a few episodes. Now, the greatest brand in TV for a few decades is buried in a product called Max, and the idiots running it are cancelling shows it just made recently to save on residuals, of all things, while grabbing a huge bag of money to take home every year to the beach house. I would not be surprised to find out one day that they dropped The Sopranos from the market, they are so stupid and greedy.

    4. Carolinian

      Blame it on Bob Iger who has now returned as Disney studio head. He is considered a genius by the Milton Friedman fan club but creatively he has been a disaster who bought other successful competitors and ran their product into the ground or, in the case of Lucasfilm, failed to revive an already played out franchise. Pauline Kael long ago wrote an essay about how the original studio heads knew movies and cared about them even if they were also financial sharks. We may now have our doubts about many aspects of Gome With the Wind but it’s still hugely entertaining. But by the 1960s the suits were struggling and it took a 70s indie revival to bring fresh creative juice.

      Conservatives think all the woke is some kind of cultural conspiracy but it’s just as likely that these casting and story sallies are little more than a further attempt to monetize the IP with superficial variations. The current studio system does need to be blown up and it just might happen.

      1. Pat

        The fact that the Disney board brought Iger out of retirement and are contractually obligated to pay him around 70 million dollars for two years is gob smacking stupid. Most of the problems facing Disney can be directly laid at Iger’s feet as a result of his brilliant short term but disastrous in the long term moves. (I will give a caveat to some of the theme park problems, the lockdown, increasingly uncomfortable climates and the fact that people got no money are not just Iger’s fault. But he sure as hell isn’t the person that can help them.)

        And yes I would lay odds that Iger and HBO/Warner walking disaster David Zaslav are the major idiots pushing the idea that breaking the unions will solve the AMPTP’s , and their, numerous problems.

      2. Mildred Montana

        From my favorite movie of all time, Chinatown (1974):

        Evelyn: “She’s my daughter.”
        [Gittes slaps Evelyn.]
        Gittes: “I said I want the truth!”
        Evelyn: “She’s my sister. . . .”
        Evelyn: “She’s my daughter. . . .”
        Evelyn: “My sister, my daughter.”
        [More slaps.]
        Gittes: “I said I want the truth!”
        Evelyn: “She’s my sister AND my daughter!”

        OMG! Incest! Back then Robert Towne was awarded the Oscar for his screenplay. Today it would be rejected on “woke” grounds and he and it “cancelled”.

        Meanwhile, coming soon to a theater near you, “Barbie”. “After being expelled from the utopian Barbie Land for being less-than-perfect dolls, Barbie and Ken go on a journey of self-discovery to the real world.” Two dolls “self-discovering”. Can it possibly get worse?

        1. lentil

          “Chinatown” is an excellent film. I used to love movies, but I stopped watching 99.9% of new ones years ago because it’s all garbage & propaganda now.

          However — I’d reserve judgment on “Barbie” (which opens later this month in theaters) — did you know it was written & directed by Greta Gerwig? She’s seriously awesome, and I want to see “Barbie” just because she wrote it! (And I’m a dude with less-than-zero interest in dolls!)

        2. anahuna

          For those interested in “Chinatown,” there’s an intriguing series on Hulu called “I Am the Night” that dramatizes the Los Angeles milieu depicted in the film, extending to the Black Dahlia murders. It’s based on a partly fictionalized memoir by a daughter, adopted out under mysterious circumstances, who is searching for her father. This is also related to a book by Dr.George Hodel’s son who spent years investigating his parents’ early lives (mother was first married to John Huston) and the murders of the Black Dahlia and others.

    5. Mikel

      “Most of the modern script writers don’s know their job but write to their agendas…”

      Many script writers get rewritten and have no say about the rewrites. It’s been that way for decades.

      A writer with the heft of a Paddy Chayefsky isn’t found very often these days unless they are doing the hypen thing: writer-producer, writer-producer-director, writer-director.

      Ask them about the “notes.” Those are more than just suggestions.

    6. Mikel

      But this is one of the biggest differences with today vs the past:
      “…In the meantime, as network schedules shift to unscripted shows and streamers buy up foreign content…”

      True that other countries had film and TV industries for decades, but other countries industries have now had the chance to continue to develop for a longer period of time without the disruptions of the magnitude of WWI & II.

    7. Big River Bandido

      I am beginning to wonder if it would be so bad if Hollywood imploded at this point.

      Seems like it’s no longer an “if”. The collapse of the American film industry is similar to what happened to the music industry in the late 1990s, and “journalism” since 2008. Music went from being an industry that employed a few million people to one that employs only a few thousand now. I don’t need to mention how hollowed-out newspapers have become in America.

      London is now the “new Hollywood”. I envy the conditions of producers in the UK, although their work (Stoller lists the teevee shows developed in the UK) is proof positive that better work terms won’t help them generate better content.

    8. digi_owl

      There is a small segment from a longer video of Zappa out there where he laments the loss of creativity in the music industry.

      He attributes this to the original label owners, cigar chomping old men as he called them, being far more willing to gamble with unknown artists while the younger managers they hire think they know the market.

      This is a process that seem to play out in all the creative industries. And right now it is compounded by a mix of nostalgia fever and DEI/woke/whatever pressure that is perhaps worse than the Hays code.

      1. Henry Moon Pie

        “creative industries”

        That oxymoron is the root of the problem. Capitalism loves to make money off Art, but Capitalism’s corrupt influence on everything it touches ends up making Art into schlock.

    9. EssCetera

      I agree the industry needs to be imploded, or at least needs a complete rewrite, but for different reasons.

      This is the industry for which fame, wealth, power and people worship is everything. In other words, it takes everything currently wrong with society and elevates it to a national cult. The way people gush and name drop with reverance is disproportionate to what those names have actually contributed to the world, these are ordinary people who shit and piss like the rest of us, they’re not royalty, but are treated as such. The treating of people as royalty is problematic because it affords people unwarranted authority and power, contributes to power dynamics and hierarchy.

      We should be trying to move away from kings, queens and emperors but are people just not capable of existing without being lorded over? I’m hoping this strike is an opportunity to toss the power structure.

    10. ArvidMartensen

      What if the state money going to Hollywood via various brown paper parcels is drying up? And Hollywood is staring at the end anyway?

      What if the sole role of Hollywood starting from around WWII was to spread ideas? Ideas that said that the US won WWII, that the US was a utopia for its citizens because of US capitalism, that the US was the kindest and most ethical country on the planet?
      That US music was superior, that US culture in all its forms was superior?
      That the US had the smartest people on the planet, and everything they did was so clever nobody else could compete?
      That US elections were sacred because they showed that US people truly ran the country?
      That US families were kind and wholesome and well fed and well clothed and housed?
      That the US had a moral obligation to send in US troops and peacekeepers to countries ruled by evil men, to protect the local people and give them democracy, and good lives?

      What if the internet can now spread ideas that educate the populus in the correct attitudes and what to be afraid of, for a lot less cost. And much more efficiently and effectively, as a mainline into everyone’s every waking moment? A Chat GP there, a viral clip there, an outrage pile-on here, a meme there?

      So why then would you send all that money to old and creaky and expensive tech and redundant, expensive wetware?

      1. Lexx

        To summarize… ‘what if everything you see on whatever screen you choose was just state propaganda via Hollywood, and the propaganda machine is looking to use tech to save money and increase profits for the elites alone, because why share with the rank-and-file, only to eliminate their jobs in the near future anyways?’

        Those were all good ‘what ifs’, Arvid. Yes, it’s exactly what I think the U.S. based “entertainment industry” is now. Formulaic, ‘on message’, and predictable. Most profit for films and television is realized outside the U.S..

        It’s why I suspect that when I chose to Chat with an AI character, I picked ‘Keanu Reeves’ because of the characters available surely ‘Neo’ could see what was worrisome about AI, and the character I talked with responded not at all like I thought ‘Neo’ would but mostly like a young modern ‘Buddha’, who was pretty chill publicly about the existential threat to his livelihood and every actor he’s ever worked with, and maybe especially the surviving estates of the dead ones.

  7. griffen

    New Mathematics Framework. Asking for a friend, but seriously California what the heck? The best thing about math is the proof, and using the simplest of math skills goes a long way in solving every day questions. I’m not the intended target audience for this effort, but I just do not comprehend the weirdness at work here.

    Accounting and finance feature repetitive tasks that need a review or a proof of things that really must align, cause if they do not you have an “outage”. A lot of insight comes from finding such an outage, all I’m saying.

      1. griffen

        I want the version of math they use in Washington. Run up my deficit, and tell the banks and financial interests that I owe that “deficits don’t really matter”. That’s a winning plan. \sarc

        I’ve lived my life quite the opposite thus far, and avoided personal debt like the plague that it is. When you know how the Wall St sausage is made from both “ends” it reveals what you can’t really unlearn.

          1. griffen

            Well in a future utopia maybe there will not be debt. But it’s unfortunately a way of life, practically unavoidable but it’s also quite practical to believe there are better economic systems built on the existence of less debt and less servitude.

            Added, I didn’t make these rules.

    1. Steve H.

      The real damage will show up later.

      Number theory requires the use of primes.

      You can’t do that if you only use even numbers.

    2. Socal Rhino

      I don’t have kids but I’m still surprised that this is the first I’ve heard of this. Not enough in this article to support an opinion.

      Dad taught and tutored math and I have a math degree. I think people with a natural talent will excel if exposed regardless of instruction, and I think the math teaching I saw before advanced college level was terrible with a couple of exceptions.

      Personally I think the most important aspect of math is its application, and applications are the best motivation to learn it for the majority.

    3. NotTimothyGeithner

      Covid exacerbated problems (NCLB is bad because of testing but linking funding to high performance and subsequently skipping steps to focus on passing), and now they are trying to cover the issue instead of denouncing Bush II. The GOP is a dog performing a pavlovian response based on who is doing it, but this is the result, trying to change the standards. The Democrats under Obama instead of undoing Shrub, simply embraced him. Instead of funding the schools, creating the conditions for teachers to function, they are going to tell parents the kids are doing great.

      There are other issues like kids not handling coins and shopping early in life, priming them for multiplication and estimation, a practical skill.

    4. chris

      Here’s a good article that discusses more of the background on the development and rollout.

      I know there’s a big difference between mastery of a subject and a sound pedagogical basis for teaching it. I know we certainly need ways to engage more students in math. Not just we need more engineers and scientists but because we need more citizens capable of understanding the information we’re given. It’s important for us all to know BS when our leaders talk!

      But I just don’t know about this…I also don’t see how it bridges the gap between kids who don’t have parents supporting them and reinforcing learning and those kids who don’t have that support at home. I’m not sure repackaging mathematics is going to make up that difference. I’m also tired of being lectured to by my kids teachers about social justice and equity. I mean… you’re working at a school where the median neighborhood family income feeding kids to your class is 5x the national average. If you really care about equity and social justice, go work in Baltimore. I can’t imagine being told my kids who all took Algebra in 7th grade would be held back or limited for 2 years until they reached 9th grade. They’d have been even more bored in HS than they already were. And speaking from experience as a student and a parent to children who have followed me into studying engineering, the benefit to getting into calculus before college is the ability to encounter these concepts for the second time and learn how to apply them. I’m not sure who this program is really trying to help: The teachers and administrators who have been saddled with a population of students that’s hard to teach/indoctrinate or kids who aren’t learning math?

    1. spud

      thanks for the article by Cory D. at least the author admits to tackle the problems of monopolies, free trade must be destroyed.

      the naive statements that the inflation today is caused by corporate power, completely ignores the reason why their is such corporate power in the first place. the corporation now has corporate power world wide to make pricing decisions far outside any local legal authority.

      corporations will simply raise prices on chinse made stuff, and pass that along to their american division.

  8. square coats

    Re: wildland firefighters

    Does anyone have any thoughts on whether or not the use of criminally underpaid inmate firefighters might be having a depressive effect on federally employed firefighters’ wages?

    I was trying to look into it a bit and it seems like most inmate firefighter programs are done by states, so I assume they’re also funded by states rather than federally. But I would imagine that the availability of such a drastically cheap source of labor would have an effect, even if the funding sources are different, right?

    1. Wukchumni

      Do inmate firefighters work directly with paid firefighters?

      I watched a Biden presser about a year ago in Idaho where he proudly announced that wildland firefighters would be making a minimum of $15 an hour, whee doggies!

      Every fast food place in Godzone is hiring @ $17-20 an hour.

      I’m not sure that raising the pay would have as much desired effect, as a similar thing is playing out here in Sequoia NP, with the exception being that there is no convict labor involved.

      We have 400,000 acres of backcountry here and the trails need constant work on them in the summer and fall, which is the only time you can do anything, and there used to be 5 to 6 trail crews each consisting of 5 to 6 workers, spread out around the National Park-and typically they move camp about every month or so, to a new location.

      They camp far from a wi-fi connection, and everything is supplied by mule train, a 19th century job that never lacked for competent aspirants, in fact it was a badge of honor working here, there are scads of people I know who have put in a decade or 3 on the job.

      That was then, the reality now is that they can’t find young adults who can be away from this ball & chain, nor do any want to do the hard physical labor that comes with trail crew or fighting a fire.

      They are down to 3 trail crews now and frankly worried about the future.

      1. square coats

        This reminded me of an older fellow I used to know who lives in a town with such high property taxes that many older adults can’t afford to keep up with them, so the town started a program of like community service in exchange for tax forgiveness for the above 55 (or maybe 65?) age bracket. But there’s not enough positions through the program so they hold a lottery each year. My friend was really excited when he got a position several years ago, though it ended up being fairly physically demanding trail maintenance, which he was not really in the shape for…

      2. griffen

        Anecdotal to fighting fires, and specific to South Carolina. Today I noticed a digital billboard, advertising for “EMT” positions for a guaranteed 40 hour week at $25 per hour. It flashed and then changed before I noticed any fine print, which I’m sure includes a few simple details. Added this is for a third party as far as I know, not affiliated with the local regional health provider. I see their vans quite often.

        EMT and healthcare positions, like there is a need for live persons. That’s something chatGPT won’t be able to replace ( I hope not anywho ).

    2. Socal Rhino

      Just an anecdote: Kid across the street became a firefighter and is making bank fighting wildfires, according to his parents. And California uses inmates.

      1. square coats

        Thank you for the anecdote! I believe there are a number of states using inmates but CA gets the most attention due to the number of fires.

    1. griffen

      It’s like the proverbial frog in a pot. First set the water in that pot to just a bit warm, then gradually start to boil. Trying my best to avoid the pot, like so many !

      His anecdote was hilarious. When there’s no one left to interview but a gorilla…

      1. Kouros

        And as with the frog in the pot, the brained had to be removed first in order for the body to stay in the water. Population has been de-brained for quite some time now.

        No normal frog nor normal people would just sit and be boiled.

    2. Carolinian

      Some of us who are not young remember all the talk about freedom as opposed to the tyrannical Commies. Take away the Commies and freedom now optional? Personally I think the censors are fooling themselves if they think they can keep the situation under control via narrative. The 20th dictators maintained order less by propaganda than great violence. The propaganda only worked when events were going their way.

      1. .Tom

        The commies were the big other, fear of which, or fear of being seen to not be sufficiently hostile to, kept us in line.

        The problem now is the rapid switching of big others. Islam, Trump, COVID, Putin, PC, China, MAGA. It’s confusing and exhausting.

      2. Bob White

        ‘Great violence’ has worked amazingly well in these United States the last 150 years or so. The things that needed to be controlled by the PTB, were controlled. The rich grew richer, the world was their oyster. The poor and the weak inherited not the earth, but that region below the earth we call hell. ‘Hell on earth.’ Violence, the explicit kind, has ALWAYS been used to control society. Understanding that depends just where you’re positioned on the great line of class and race.

        1. JBird4049

          The threat of violence has always been implied even in peaceful, civilized, and egalitarian societies, but the use of violence, meaning of course the end of peace, is always needed by wealthy to keep their wealth as a society becomes more uncivilized and less egalitarian. There are always at least a very few people who use violence to get their way and usually a society will ostracize, exile, confine, or execute them. However, our society has these people at the top, in control, and imposing their (lack) of values on everyone else.

    3. Amfortas the hippie

      1: that Tom Waits song couldve been written about me,lol.
      2. the fear of difference/tall weeds has been a thing for as long as i can remember(being different and a tall weed, and all)
      3: i’m fortunate that my eldest’s buddies started out working for me on the farm in freshman year, if not before…and are well used to my quirks…and have learned to pay attention to my ramblings.
      this tolerance rubs off on everybody they bring out here, now…and i have a whole gaggle of youth to corrupt with things like heterodox economics, socratic perplexity and general think-for-yourselfism.
      starting in on my youngest’s cohort/gaggle, now.

      it is the one thing that gives me a sliver of hope for the future.

    4. flora

      A common US adage from 100+ years ago, which was included in grade school penmanship writing exercises, was this:

      “A great nation cannot afford to act meanly.”

      How is this sensorship of everyone in our latest writing digital communications anything less than mean with a mean purpose?

      Websters, ‘Mean’, adj., 3 4 and 5:

      : of poor, shabby, or inferior quality or status
      mean city streets
      : worthy of little regard : contemptible
      —often used in negative constructions as a term of praise
      no mean feat
      : lacking dignity or honor : base
      a mean motive
      : penurious, stingy
      He’s very mean with his money.

    5. Judith

      What a great song and video. I am thinking a collaboration between Waits, Bela Tarr, and Laszlo Krasznahorhai (of Satantango) would be compelling.

  9. racaseal

    The ‘eugyppius: a plague chronicle’ substack for the German protest story sure is something 🤮

    1. IM Doc

      I saw this on Twitter this AM

      I will just leave that there, with just one comment.

      There is a reason that all across the USA, and I would surmise Germany from the above video, there are just simply nowhere near enough EMTs and other emergency staff. We are long past the event horizon of this implosion. It is coming.

      Why on earth would anyone want to do that job? Grown adults cementing themselves to the pavement and then behaving like spoiled 3 year olds with those trying to help. One of the most important phrases my grandma ever said to me – and repeatedly – when I was a kid – TOUGH TOENAILS. I simply cannot fathom how my grandma would react to our world today.

      1. Screwball

        That sounds like my mom. She was like granny from the Beverly Hillbillies (she was a hillbilly too, and proud of it). Didn’t take crap from anyone, and everyone was afraid of her. And they should have been – one tough cookie.

        I would rephrase your last line; how would our world react to grandma?

        Not too good IMNSHO, but they would eventually be much better off.

      2. The Rev Kev

        I read that a coupla months ago, a bunch of these idiots did the same stunt in in a car showroom in Germany somewhere. As it was near the end of the day the staff just turned off the lights, locked the doors and left them. I hope that those protestors did not have too many cups of coffee before going to that showroom.

      3. Carolinian

        Maybe part of it had to do with larger families. I’ve recently been thinking about my parents and my mother was one of eleven children. All that sibling competition likely does produce a different mindset than in your upper crust where only an heir and a spare are needed to carry on the coat of arms or family business. Perhaps they are spoiled adults because they were spoiled children. Just a thought.

        1. digi_owl

          The eldest also grow up quicker mentally, as they get tasked with looking after the younger ones early on.

          That said, one do not need to be part of a large family for that.

          Years ago i read about how in Japan it was not uncommon for parents running corner stores etc to leave their kid watching the counter while the parent runs an errand. As in they were given trust and responsibility far earlier than kids in USA (and increasingly Europe, thanks to the steady influence of US media).

          And now that i think about it, i remind myself of how Japanese scholars scoffed at European chivalry for putting women on pedestals.

      4. petal

        Thank you, IM Doc. That one EMS guy on the right looks so demoralised, esp towards the end where he stops and puts his head down. You can feel his emotions and read his thoughts. If it had been me, I’d have punched them a few times while they were still stuck to the pavement and couldn’t get away, then chiseled them out. Unreal. Or just left them there. Or “We’re going to have to amputate your hand.” Play stupid games, win stupid prizes. What poor sod got told “Sorry, we can’t come for your heart attack/stroke/true emergency right now, our squad is chiseling out some adults that threw a fit and cemented themselves to the road.” The height of selfishness. Figure we will be on our own soon enough. Eventually the stupid wins because decent people get fed up dealing with it.

      5. flora

        Thanks IM. The translates it thus:

        “ticking themselves to the street and then screaming like a five-year-old when firefighters are allowed to knock them free: no wonder almost everyone hates them now. The #LastGeneration is just as…

        / oy

    2. mrsyk

      I’m a little amazed at the community reaction to this. “We are witnessing an unprecedented, comprehensive failure of policy, medicine and science. The world will never be the same.” Those protesters are taking a stand exactly aligned with eugyppius’ own description of his/her blog. I too sympathize with EMTs but that’s not really what we’re talking about here is it. These people seem to have figured out that climate change is going to kill us all (correct IMNSHO), and that policy makers are not going to do anything about it (correct again). I have no reservation in describing this comment thread as “kicking down” and it bums me out.

      1. Amfortas the hippie

        but the people(sic—more and more looks like Icke was right about Reptilians in Human Suits) who could actually do anything about the climate disaster wont be affected in the least by these actions.
        only other workers, etc.
        who will rightly be pissed at these overgrown toddlers which will thereby turn them off to the intended “message”.
        ergo, such actions are counterproductive to the stated goals.

        …and…i get that one could say the same thing about…say…disabling a refinery, or something. the people most harmed would be ordinary people who need the gasoline to get to work.
        but still…

        and, as for my boney fides:when a giant multinational was trying to put in a frac sand mine a mile thataway…me and my neighbors fought it…in court, even…after the hearings and regulatory morass and such were spent.
        i taught all them rednecks, god love em, about direct action and caltrops…
        but the market shifted, and the mine never happened.
        still, these mostly right wing redneck folks were very attentive to such anarchist cookbook kinds of things, for when the nice methods were over.
        get creative, build relationships, start at yer doorstep.

        1. mrsyk

          Yeah, I hear you. And yeah, “get creative, build relationships, start at yer doorstep.” is sound advice particularly for the community building baked in. Idk how effective it is in todays thinly veiled global authoritarian reality regarding public welfare policy. Governments by the rich and for the rich don’t act on behalf of the public good. Period. Look at Norfolk Southern.

        2. Henry Moon Pie

          “only other workers, etc.
          who will rightly be pissed at these overgrown toddlers which will thereby turn them off to the intended “message”.”

          Frankly, the time for worrying about the reaction of workers or anybody else is past. You’re at Ground Zero right now, in extraordinary heat. The carbon that is doing this to us was all in the atmosphere a decade ago by current best estimates. We’ve been emitting at higher and higher levels since with the exception of 2020, so there’s nine more years of heating baked in if we stopped emitting today. There’s not 4 or 8 or 12 years to get the politics thing right, to get those workers on board for even a planned increase in the price of gasoline. These people appear to be engaging in an effort to slow down the Machine, throw themselves on some gears.

          Maybe before condemning them and calling them names, we can explain to them how we have a much better plan that’s working in a timeframe that might prevent–what number should we pick?–2 degrees C?

          Rocking the boat upsets the lives of everybody on the hamster wheel. It’s inconvenient when people block the streets and make our commute 3 hours long. But if people think that’s disruptive, just look around at all the inconvenience going around with smoky skies and burning heat. Wait until we see the hurricanes from all that hot water in the oceans. And it’s not even 1.5 degrees of warming yet.

          I see them as allies, willing to risk a lot of trouble in their lives to do something, anything at this point. I can’t blame them, especially the young ones. What a curse we’ve laid on them.

          Well, we’ll shoot some sulfur in the sky I’m sure it will all work out.

      2. IM Doc

        There was a time and day in my life when protestors faced their opponents with courage and fearlessness. This is just in my lifetime. Martin Luther King as just one example. Spent long amounts of time in jail for his troubles. And it made a statement.

        These people, however, are doing far more damage to the cause. Being crybabies is never a good look. Throwing paint all over cultural icons is going to do nothing to change the behavior of those in charge. It will however make the whole cause look bad and make working people miserable for no reason as the EMTs in this video demonstrate, not to mention all the people screwed in the traffic and airport problems.

        There was a day when people knew how to protest to make the correct groups miserable. This is an example of a complete fail.

        1. mrsyk

          I hear you doc, and I’m not trying to glorify the protesters or their methods. The whole thing upsets my balance, offends my own need for peace, sanity, and a reasonable discourse. But what would you/I have them do? I’ve not one idea myself. Amongst those who influence policy public welfare does not seem to be a consideration, ever, period. Look at Covid response.

          1. GramSci

            I’m with you mrsyk. Who among this brave commentariat has taken equivalent action against climate change, quixotic though it may be?

            I’m embarrassed to say I have not.

            Edit: Well, maybe I have, but however much the video offends the local PMC, my action was certainly less effective.

            1. JBird4049

              IIRC, MLK had everyone dressed in their Sunday best and on their best behavior. When the local police would riot and attack the protesters for daring to walk peacefully on a street or across a bridge, it was obvious who was in the right and who was not. There are many ways to protest and being an adult when doing so makes a stronger case whatever the cause.

              I would almost think that this is psy-ops like those done in the 1960s and 70s done by organizations like the CIA.

              1. Valerie in Australia

                Thank you for reminding us of the dignity of the Civil Rights Protesters, “it was obvious who was in the right and who was not.” I truly believe that these protesters in the video were sincere. However, they have been raised in a generation of indulgence and over the top praise for basically doing the minimum. They can’t comprehend hardship – and truly protesting, as Julian Assange is proof of – is gruelling and can be humiliating. At the next protest I attend, I will wear my “Sunday best” and comport myself with dignity – and if my protest is a failure, I will hold my head high, knowing that I tried to make a small change for the better.

            2. SOMK

              I once (on behalf of an environmental protest group) made a fake submission at a planning hearing for a new airport terminal then ran around the room making airplane noises whilst being threatened with arrest, assuming that vaguely counts…

              these protests are useless and polarizing, they give the very people you are hoping to convince (and even if you’d did convenience them,got them out on the street, what did record number of protests do vis a vis the Iraq war? You would need mass buy in for something like a global level general strike, to have a chance at shifting the dial, this is not how you do that) every excuse to close their ears, the class background of these protesters is noticeable, by all means if nuking the Louvre would end climate change then let’s nuke the Louvre, but it won’t. Its the equivalent of someone pooping their pants on public transport and expecting a round of applause from their fellow passengers when they earnestly announce they’re raising awareness of climate change.

              It’s been likened to suffragettes, but that was one policy lever, a pressure point demanding a relatively straight forward legislative amendment in most cases, not a radical rearranging of capitalism itself that preventing runaway climate change would require, the powers that be already know, but they are vote getters, and these actions tarnish the movement is such a way as to frustrate its potential to be a consequential policy priority, assuming our bought and paid for representatives would either be capable or willing to genuinely go down that path. It may simply be beyond the scope of our burnt out political structures to effect something like that, never mind the imbecilic a leadership class the West especially has been burdened with.

              For the most part these protests are just a means for people to point at themselves and their virtue, the Greta Thunberg phenomena was a dinner bell for ego maniacs all under the delusion of the utility of speaking truth to power, ignoring the fact the Ms.Thunberg despite the massive platform she has been afforded (none of these bozos are getting within a mile of any billionaires carbon zero solar yacht let alone an invite to address the UN) has not moved the dial an inch.

              100% counter productive, preaching to the choir whilst peeing on the congregation.

        2. Henry Moon Pie

          I have a hard time blaming especially young people for trying any non-violent tactic at this point. The airport seems like good symbolism to me. It won’t stop the billionaires from flying in their private jets, but the brainwashed fools who overloaded the airports last weekend need to have their guilt-free flying made even more unpleasant and inconvenient if possible. And we should all be spiking the tires of every Escalade and Navigator we come across.

          How about striking workers? Their aim is to throw a monkey wrench into the system, inconvenience to others be damned. A lot of scabs and picket-line crossers have nothing but hatred and contempt for the picketers. I have heard this line about some direct action offending people or turning people against the cause for more than 50 years. It’s not a popularity contest; it’s a contest of wills. And frankly, how the public reacts is irrelevant because, as a great advocate of direct action once said according to tradition, voting changes nothing.

          How can we blame young people today from doing whatever they can to make Business As Usual impossible? And whatever they do, has to be done in the face of an authoritarian State far more empowered technologically and just as ruthless as anything we faced in the 60s.

          I think when we start falling for the framing of protestors vs. EMTs, we should re-think because this framing comes from the defenders of BAU.

        3. jhallc

          My first thought was this remind me if the tactics of the “Monkey Wrench Gang” and driving spikes into trees to hinder the loggers. The loggers, while not necessarily innocent, were not the problem, it was the corporate suits who made the profits that were the problem. This action does nothing to interrupt the flow of profits or their lives in any way. There’s got to be a better way.

          1. Henry Moon Pie

            Maybe a sternly worded letter will do the trick.

            Just what can a group of protestors do to the corporate suits with all their private security? The target is less the producers than the consumers because if people weren’t still flocking to airports so they can be mistreated (but we still got to see Mickey!), then those corporate profits wouldn’t be flowing but much more importantly, less carbon would be going into the air.

            Neither the UAW at Flint nor the UMW at Blair Mountain were trying to impress some third party Greek chorus of respectable folks. They had the numbers, the organization and the power to keep them from getting the coal or building the cars. Extinction Rebellion does’t have the numbers or the power. As is possible to infer from what the blog post said, these events are aimed, in part, at attracting more numbers of people willing to engage in direct action, not pleasing voters, and certainly not the completely complicit press.

            Here’s an interview of Roger Hallam, a founder of Extinction Rebellion, conducted by none other than Chris Hedges, who was very quick to jump on the Black Bloc during Occupy. They are trying to fit in with what’s considered “non-violent,” hence gluing yourself to stuff.

          2. ambrit

            There are better ways, but they are about as immoral and illegal as can be. To ‘remove’ a destructive elite, must one become equally, if not more destructive?
            As far as I can figure out, the reason “the People” have not physically ‘removed’ the Oligarchs is due to cultural neutering.
            It is a problem to work through the question of whether the cross cultural maxim: ‘Thou shalt not kill,’ is a moral imperative or a cultural control propaganda item.
            Stay safe for as long as you can. (…for as long as ‘they’ let us?)

            1. jhallc

              I hear you. If I run into Fauci on the street I’m definitely gonna accidentally trip him.

        4. flora

          “Being crybabies is never a good look.”

          Thanks so much. Think I’ll have this saying embossed on a bicycle stick-on thingy. / ;)

        5. petal

          Totally agree with you, Doc. It turns regular people against the cause-it is counterproductive.

    3. Henry Moon Pie

      A lot of confusion in this thread between “protest” which is aimed at increasing public support with an eye toward electoral successes and “direct action” which seeks to directly impact the systems that are the source of the problem. And you don’t have to go back to the lunch counters to find an example of protests that worked hard to be nice and polite: the completely ineffectual Iraq War protests against the Bush administration.

      And the movement for black liberation was not entirely made up of people dressed in their Sunday best. Malcolm X, Stokely Carmichael, Fred Hampton and Huey Newton represented another strain that was not so popular among nice, respectable white people.

      I’ll be blunt. This thread does not represent one of the Commentariat’s better moments in my view. I’d urge those who are so quick to condemn that they at least make an effort to understand the motivations and strategic thinking behind these actions by listening to Chris Hedges’s 30 minute interview of Extinction Rebellion’s founder, Roger Hallam.

        1. jhallc

          Each type of action has an impact, sometimes unintended, that can be both positive or negative . The tree sitter’s in the redwoods, the campers in Cop City all brought attention to an issue. In some cases they had a minor financial or delaying impact on what they were protesting. The most effective protest increases public awareness positively and has an impact on the system. The folks in this video are clearly dedicated, but I’m not sure it achieves either of those end points. The Standing Rock pipeline protests were an example of one that I think met both these goals.

          1. Henry Moon Pie

            Trying to understand it as primarily a protest is where you’re going wrong. It’s more like the UAW’s sit-down strike at the Flint plant than MLK’s march on Washington. The goal is not to appeal to third parties but to break the system, making Business As Usual more difficult. If these groups grow in size, the goal is to shut things down, an approach like Luxemburg’s Mass Strike or the anarcho-syndicalist general strike.

            The goal is not to win elections. They’re pointless and lead nowhere. The goal is to eventually break this system so something new can take its place.

            There probably is one collateral goal that involves appeal to those not involved: recruiting. And the target audience is definitely not nice middle class folks who are inconvenienced or turned off by these actions. Instead, they’re looking to reach young people, and more precisely angry young people, who will be willing to join them in more efforts to disrupt BAU.

            I urge you to watch the Hedges interview of Hallam that I linked in this thread. Let Hallam speak for the goals and strategy of these disruptors.

  10. britzklieg

    Beckers Hospital review forgot an important word in its headline: CDC, HHS prep for commercialization of CRAP COVID vaccines

  11. Alice X

    >Praise for Dr. Monica Gandhi

    Well, my stark memory of her early pandemic appearance on DemocratsNow™ stating categorically that after you get an mRNA jab you will be immune to the virus is going to impede my getting very far with the piece, but I’ll try. Maybe. Gag…

    1. Alice X

      So I read the piece. It confirmed my estimation that said Dr. was quite consistent. Consistently wrong!

  12. flora

    re: Big Wall St. banks making huge profits in a higher interest rate world.

    The flip side is small banks will struggle to navigate this huge rate jump made in this short period of time. Small banks: the competitors to the big banks. Wall St. gains, Main Street struggles…again. A continuation of the 2008 financial crisis. It never ended on Main Street.

    1. Pookah Harvey

      And just where are those huge bank profits coming from? A Bloomberg article from the other day answers he question:

      “Citigroup Inc., the world’s second-largest credit-card issuer, is reaping the gains as customers borrow more — even as a growing number struggle to make payments.
      Higher interest rates and larger card balances set the stage for an 11% jump in revenue…”

      A booming economy…?

  13. Reify99

    Clicked on the Drexel link. Read unpaywalled excerpt, then clicked to see if there was a free subscription option to open the rest of it. There was…
    However, a paid option was pre-selected, and my credit card number was already populated in the payments box. I could see the last 4.
    Just to be clear, I didn’t give it to them.
    This is just wrong.

    1. Fried

      I think that’s your browser filling it in with information stored on your computer, not their website.

  14. The Rev Kev

    “Chinese man convicted for building bridge ignites public debate over judicial power”

    A villager found guilty of ‘picking quarrels and provoking trouble’? Bah. Amateurs. We in the west could teach them a few tricks of how to shut down people. How about ‘Disturbing the peace’ or maybe ‘interfering with the police in the course of their duty’ or best of all the ‘move along’ laws where the police can tell you to go away from the scene for a set amount of time or they will be arrested.

  15. Katniss Everdeen

    This is a very interesting Rising video from yesterday (no Briahna or Robbie on Fridays) on a subject I have heard nothing about–the building of the Taiwan Semiconductor (TWSC) “fab” in Arizona, courtesy of the u.s. treasury via the “CHIPS Act.”

    Despite biden’s claiming that the plant was being built with union labor, TWSC rejected that as too expensive, and went with non-union workers supplied by a temporary staffing corporation.

    This has resulted in inadequately trained workers causing delays, poor quality work requiring redos, wage issues, workplace injuries and 2 deaths. As pointed out in the piece, unions not only bargain for wages and safe working conditions, but provide training to high union skill standards.

    As a result, TWSC now wants to bring 500 of its own Chinese workers to Arizona to complete the project, and is “working with the american government” to get the visas, claiming that american workers are “unskilled”, difficult to work with, and inadequate for the project requirements. According to the reporter being interviewed, TWSC will be requesting more taxpayer money from the CHIPS funds to facilitate this.

    You pretty much knew this was the way it would go.

    1. tegnost

      the globalists have been telling me for years that my standard of living must fall in order to increase the standard of chinese people, among others… and now those chinese are not nearly as grateful as they should be… I think we should come up with some kind of a loan thingy so those 500 workers can pay their own way to a better life, a sort of guaranteed loan thingy where they are investing in their future…that should work well.

  16. The Rev Kev

    “Major League Cricket lays strong foundation in Grand Prairie debut”

    I’m not sure if Americans would be prepared for the full cricket experience. Imagine going to a game and being told that it goes on so long that they have to schedule meal & drink breaks for the players. This is just a Day-Night match. But a Test Cricket match itself can go on for up to five days.

    1. Henry Moon Pie

      Impatient Americans squawk if it takes five days to count votes in a national election where 150 million votes are cast.

    2. Will

      They instituted pitch clocks and other rule changes this year to make baseball games shorter and appeal to a younger crowd. Would love to see the market research for cricket in America.

      But maybe cricket is aiming for the idle rich, who can spend a week watching men run around in white sweaters, with breaks for gourmet meals, wine tastings and naps?

    3. ChrisPacific

      Sounds like it was either a 50 over game or a T20 from the scoreline.

      I struggled to see many spectators in the photos who weren’t South Asian, though, and the players all sounded like imports as well. Perhaps the South Asian demographic in the US is large enough now that they can sustain the sport on their own, but I didn’t see much evidence of adoption by ‘regular’ Americans.

  17. Mikel

    “The Fires that Burn in France Are About Its Colonial Legacy” People’s Democracy

    “…Over the course of the past six months, the governments of Burkina Faso and Mali have ejected French troops. They have argued that the 2013 French intervention, purportedly against al-Qaeda, in fact intensified the instability in the region and that France actually consorted with secessionist groups against the national states…”

    “They have argued…”
    An ‘argument’? It sounds more like a description of the empire and wanna-be empire playbook.

  18. Carolinian

    Since I don’t, and have never, Facebook-ed file under good to know

    Accessing a chronological feed on either Facebook or Instagram is deliberately difficult and continually interrupted with advertising that takes up half of your screen. The core product that people originally joined Facebook to use — seeing content from their friends and groups and interests — has been drowned in a sea of noxious “content,” oscillating between showing you 5-second long previews of videos engineered to get clicks, targeted advertisements, and posts from friends or groups from a few hours to a few days ago.

    That last bit is perhaps the most noxious element of today’s Facebook. While Facebook’s propensity for recommending content from third parties is bad enough, it has the audacity to pick which of your friends’ posts you should be allowed to see. It’s a weird — and, when you think about it, deeply sinister — overreach, and one that we wouldn’t tolerate in any other kind of service. Imagine if your messaging app did the same thing. You’d rightfully be outraged.

    Some of us who grew up in a world saturated with advertising (Ladybird Johnson tried to at least get it off the freeways) would just as soon never see any advertising ever again. Computers are versatile and you can curate your own web if you want to take the time and trouble. Many or most, unfortunately, don’t care to do that. But the un-brainwashed minority are likely what is driving the fake news crowd crazy.

  19. Mikel

    “Americans are widely pessimistic about democracy in the United States, an AP-NORC poll finds” AP

    Yeah, people get pessimistic when something they thought existed doesn’t exist.

  20. Big River Bandido

    In-N-Out Burger: the company memo helpfully included a corporate phone number at the bottom. Would be a shame if that line got overwhelmed.

      1. kareninca

        I did, too. I rarely contact companies but I’m not keen on restaurants encouraging the spread of disease.

  21. TimH

    DeSantis: “They want to get rid of cash… It will allow them to prohibit undesirable purchases…”

    Wong reason. The intention is to allow them to prohibit undesirables from purchasing.

    1. pretzelattack

      yeah, ties in with the article about banks closing accounts, makes it easier to control people.

  22. antidlc

    Well, well, well.

    Look what’s on the US Health and Human Services Facebook page:

    U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
    1d ·
    The more often you get COVID, the higher your risk of complications.
    Get added protection with an updated vaccine today.
    Find free updated COVID vaccines at

    (bold mine)
    Short video says just because you got COVID once doesn’t mean you can’t get it again.

    Of course, their answer is just get vaccinated.

  23. tegnost

    biden 72 million…

    biden is the candidate for the lamborghini suv set.
    If you don’t have a lamborghini suv, don’t vote for biden!

  24. Carolinian

    Scheerpost liberates the latest Hersh with some inside dope.

    I was told that Burns’s speech was essentially a job application in a future government, or perhaps in the one at hand, for secretary of state. “He was showing his competence and his experience,” the official said, “He realized that he was going down the grain, professionally, while at the Agency. He was awful”—that is, inexperienced—“but he realized it was not going down well with the boys, and then he did right.” The key issue for Burns, I was told, as some in the CIA saw it, was ambition. “Once you are a secretary of state, the world is your oyster.”


  25. Amfortas the hippie

    Re: the reinventing the wheel thing in the dairy trade mag:
    while i am pleased that such techniques are finally finding their way into mainstream ag publications…its only 50+ years too late,lol.
    ive been intimately involved in “Organic” since i was 5 years old…and ill be 54 in 2 months.
    in that time….for most of that time…all such rational and scientifically sound practices were almost universally scoffed at by these kinds of folks…”hippy dippy” is something ive had flung at me…more than once,lol.
    better late than never, i suppose…and it only took concentrating fertilizer production in russia and ukraine and fomenting a war there over 30+ years to make these people see the light, at last.

    and!….my perennial complaint…wholly overlooked, in this article: adding manure is great….a necessary ingredient in making crops for off-farm export(gotta replace those nutrients in the soil, unless yer customers poop on yer farm)…but apparently all manure to be had these days contains persistent herbicides. these are sprayed on the hay(they dont affect grass, spp)…go through all 4 stomachs, as well as the hot composting process…unchanged.
    so yer compost is herbicidal.
    ive been yelling about this for more than 15 years…and get the same “hippy dippy” nonsense from all and sundry in conventional(chem) ag.

    to be fair…tomatoes are the plant thats most affected by these forever chems…curcurbits and peppers dont seem to care.
    green beans are also apparently affected, tho to a lesser extent than toms.
    eggplants are also averse.

    dowpont considers the test for these chems proprietary…and epa has been supine(i called them about this 15+ years ago…2 of the most depressed government people ive ever talked to).
    the “Bean Test” is the only test(plant a bean in it and wait to see what happens)

  26. Jason Boxman

    From NC secretary of state, for business filings:

    Due to staffing shortages, the Agency continues to work through its business registration mail backlog from the recently ended busy filing season. In some cases, mailed-in documents may take up to 8 weeks to process. We strongly urge annual reports and new business documents be filed online

    Why are there staffing shortages? This is quite the mystery.

    1. ambrit

      I’d imagine that it depended on how many government employees could fit in the ‘drowning’ bathtub.

  27. anon

    I have a data point. I have a friend who has been teaching logic each summer for years to extremely motivated high school students. In years gone by, the group would average 9 questions correct out of ten on a start-of-the course test. This year, the group has averaged five questions correct out of ten. I told my friend that it was due to covid and I think that got his attention.

    1. GramSci

      Exactly. What has ‘logic’ got to do with how the world works? Is it long Covid? Or is it enlightenment, bodhi?

  28. willow

    re: RAND article thinking option contracts are a solution to supply chain problems. If options are the solution than RAND clearly doesn’t understand either complexities of supply chain issue and impact of asset specificity (a la Williamson) or how options contracts are settled & remediated in common law. May work for low scale & small deviations but at scale & with inherent fat-tail risks it will be a nightmare. A great idea for consultants, bankers & lawyers to make a lot of money though.

    Looks like Establishment desperately clutching at straws for solutions to get them out the merde they’re in.

  29. flora

    Yesterday, July 14th, was Bastille Day. In honor of that day I leave this utube clip, even if a day late. Regrets for missing the important day on it’s true day. Regards to French readers of NC. As an Anglo I’ve always found this film version of Le Marseillaise and it’s meaning inspiring.

      1. flora

        Thank you. I often wonder if Macron, like everyone else, when seeing a great production of Les Miserables identified with Jean Valjean. ‘Tis a mystery.

    1. flora

      And, well, um, maybe it’s just me (probably) but NC’s apparently ignoring of this past year’s Christmas and Hanukkah and other important social rites like including the 4th of July and Bastille Day (not religious but politically important observances), which I can understand as a “something else” rites observance vs a wider world, like financial interests importance of a thing vs something else, except… In years past pre-2021 these things weren’t tossed aside. What happened? / my 2 cents

  30. Jason Boxman

    The volume of these vascular procedures has been surging. The use of atherectomies, in particular, has soared — by one measure, more than doubling in the past decade, according to a Times analysis of Medicare payment data.

    Unnecessary surgery is a crime against humanity. So naturally this is a profit center.

    I think the unwritten rule of America is you don’t mess with rich people’s stuff. Exploiting the working class is totally okay, though, in any way imaginable almost.

  31. kareninca

    No twitter updates from Wachter or his wife. That’s odd. They do both like to share. I’d think that if they were capable of tweeting, they would be tweeting.

    1. Jason Boxman

      Over time they’re all gonna get theirs. Not sure that’s gonna contribute to getting out of this mess.

      1. kareninca

        He’s tweeting again.

        No, their suffering won’t help us. It will just be idiots suffering, more of the same, alas.

Comments are closed.