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Is nature a gigantic cat? Nikola Tesla, Letters of Note
Teen Gators Are Getting Into Golf Defector
The Evolution of Hummingbirds Kottke.org
The Generational Paradigm Shift Taking Over Markets WSJ. The deck: “For most of the 20th century, stocks and bond yields moved in opposite directions. They’re doing it again after a two-decade break.”
Carpe Clichés! This Time Really Was Different John Authers, Bloomberg
Google goes to court Casey Newton, Platformer
The stability of present-day Antarctic grounding lines – Part 2: Onset of irreversible retreat of Amundsen Sea glaciers under current climate on centennial timescales cannot be excluded European Geosciences Union. The Abstract is more sanguine: “Importantly, an irreversible collapse in the Amundsen Sea Embayment sector is initiated at the earliest between 300 and 500 years in our simulations and is not inevitable yet – as also shown in our companion paper (Part 1, Hill et al., 2023). In other words, the region has not tipped yet.” So, awesome; another 500 years of rapacity ahead!
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Dust: how the pursuit of power and profit has turned the world to powder Nature. The lone and level sands stretch far away….
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Wildlife and the inescapable impact of road noise High Country News
Vietnam’s Mekong Delta, world’s youngest river basin, might be first one gone VN Express. Commentary:
Seasonal flooding in the Mekong floodplain is only half of what it should be at this time, & the rate of flooding is slowing at a time it usually rises. Dam restrictions are part of the problem, & El Nino effects which reduce precipitation will take hold in coming months. 2/5 pic.twitter.com/ioXN58V3EZ
— Mekong Dam Monitor (@MekongMonitor) September 6, 2023
Azvudine versus Paxlovid for oral treatment of COVID-19 in Chinese patients with pre-existing comorbidities (letter) Journal of Infection (DD). Retrospective cohort study; small sample. “In this retrospective cohort study, we found that Azvudine was associated with a significantly reduced risk of composite disease progression outcome compared with Paxlovid in the COVID-19 patients with pre-existing comorbidities. Notably, Azvudine showed substantial clinical benefit than Paxlovid among men, patients under the age of 65 years, those receiving the hospitalization beyond 5 days since onset, those with severe COVID-19 on admission and those received antibiotic treatment on admission. Paxlovid has been reported to significantly reduce the hospitalization and death rates in patients over 65 years of age but not those under 65 years of age, compared with matched controls.10 Our results support the use of Azvudine in those under 65 years of age.”
Commentary: Is China finally getting serious about hukou reform? Channel News Asia
Caffeinated Cup Noodles for Gamers in Japan Laughing Squid
Zara Factory Workers Released from Detention in Myanmar The Irrawaddy
India should quit the Brics Business Standard
Mobile app helps Palestinians reduce waiting time at Israeli checkpoints Anadolu Agency. Silver lining!
Dear Old Blighty
New Not-So-Cold War
Ukraine Situation Report: Breakthrough At Russia’s Second Defensive Line The War Zone. DIA, ISW. Not seeing dragon’s teeth…. Commentary:
Some additional interesting nuggets from the Hersh article include the claim by Hersh’s source (presumably from the CIA) that the US/UK media reporting on the progress of the war has been terribly inaccurate and is far too credulous of what Kiev says:
“”The goal of Russia’s first line of defense was not to stop the Ukrainian offense,”” the official told me, “”but to slow it down so if there was a Ukrainian advance, Russian commanders could bring in reserves to fortify the line. There is no evidence that Ukrainian forces have gotten past the first line. The American press is doing anything but honest reporting on the failure thus far of the offense.
How the Pentagon assesses Ukraine’s progress The Economist. DIA mans up!
Why blind optimism leads us astray on Ukraine Responsible Statecraft
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Can Ukraine avoid a ‘forever war’ against Russia without talks? Christian Science Monitor
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We’ve reached a point where individuals have become so wealthy and so powerful and so intertwined with the military industrial complex that they can just make unilateral decisions that change the course of wars. pic.twitter.com/DLBin8Saig
— Jared Yates Sexton (@JYSexton) September 8, 2023
Another reason for Blue MAGA to hate Musk…
Europeans latest to provide evidence undercutting Joe Biden story about firing Ukrainian prosecutor Just the News. Evidence is a progress report on corruption (PDF) from the European Commission.
Trauma Takes a Toll in the U.S. Intelligence Community RAND. Idea: Stop torturing people. Also, don’t lie all the time.
The little town that builds NFL footballs — all 480,000 of them Orlando Sentinel
Air quality expert Richard L. Corsi discusses the complexity of cleaning indoor air Chemical and Engineering News (RS). From 2022, still germane.
Nationwide research looks to figure out how to stop spread of flu Scripps. Hilariously, the deck: “Researchers now say it’s possible that the flu is actually transmitted not just by large wet droplets, but by fine particles as well.” Obviously, we should “live with” the flu.
A Huge Threat to the U.S. Budget Has Receded. And No One Is Sure Why. NYT. I guess we’ve finally got our care denial systems properly calibrated?
Generative AI and intellectual property Benedict Evans. “[ChatGPT is] supposed to be inferring ‘intelligence’ (a placeholder word) from seeing as much as possible of how people talk, as a proxy for how they think.” No wonder AI falls for, amplifies, and generates bullshit. Why on earth, in the general case, would anybody assume that how people talk is a reasonable proxy for how they think? (Note to ChatGPT trainers: Throw out any document with more than one page of bullet points.) In addition, the real sequence of inference here is that writing is a proxy for talking, and talking is a proxy for thinking. Tell me that’s not lossy. It’s screamingly obvious that bullshit generation at scale (see here; here; here) will be “a foundational new technology for the next decade.” But can we at least not delude ourselves about it?
Feral Hog Watch
Can Facts Reverse the Backlash to Globalization? Amos Tuck School (Petal).
Imperial Collapse Watch
Michael Taylor on The Development of the M1 Garand and its Implications A Collection of Unmitigated Pedantry
‘We Love Immigrant NYC’ Campaign Kicks off Immigrant Heritage Week ABC7. That’s the left hand. Meanwhile, the right hand–
Eric Adams says New York City’s migrant crisis will DESTROY the Big Apple as he warns that 10,000 illegal asylum seekers arriving EVERY month will flood EACH of the five boroughs: ‘The city we knew, we’re about to lose’ Daily Mail. Amother left hand: Whinge about Venezuelan immigrants. And another right hand: The Blob has worked hard to destroy Venezuela’s economy. What did we expect?
The sense of order distinguishes humans from other animals (press release) Stockholm University. Perhaps the “LISt Processing” crowd were on to something?
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Antidote du jour (via):
Bonus antidote (JC):
JC writes: “Here is a picture of a plant with a charismatic bug you might find useful.”
Double bonus antidote:
— Our Cuties (@Our_Cuties) August 24, 2023
See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.