2:00PM Water Cooler 1/24/2024

By Lambert Strether of Corrente.

Bird Song of the Day

Pine Siskin, Cathedral Rock Trailhead to Deep Lake, Kittitas, Washington, United States. “Natural song at 11:15am including mimicry of Northern Flicker call note.”

* * *


“So many of the social reactions that strike us as psychological are in fact a rational management of symbolic capital.” –Pierre Bourdieu, Classification Struggles

Capitol Seizure

“House Jan. 6 Committee deleted more than 100 encrypted files days before GOP took majority: sources” [FOX]. “The former House Select Committee on Jan. 6 deleted more than 100 encrypted files from its probe just days before Republicans took over the majority in the House of Representatives, Fox News Digital has learned…. Sources familiar with [House Administration Committee’s Oversight Subcommittee Chair Barry Loudermilk’s] investigation told Fox News Digital that, per House rules, the former select committee, which was chaired by Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., was required to turn over all documents from its investigation to the new, GOP-led panel, after Republicans secured the majority of the House of Representatives following the 2022 midterm elections…. Sources told Fox News Digital that Thompson had told Loudermilk that the select committee would turn over four terabytes of archived data, but that the new committee only received approximately two terabytes of data. Fox News Digital has learned that Loudermilk’s committee hired a digital forensics team to scrape hard drives to determine what information they were not given. The forensics team, according to sources familiar with their search, determined that 117 files were both deleted and encrypted. Sources said those files were deleted on Jan. 1, 2023 – just days before Thompson’s team was required to transfer the data to the new committee. Fox News Digital has learned the forensics team has recovered all 117 deleted and encrypted files. Now, Loudermilk is demanding answers and passwords to access the data.” • Hmm. Maybe these were more files about Chelsea’s wedding?


Less than a year to go!

* * *

Trump (R): “Trump Defeats Haley in New Hampshire in March Toward Nomination” [Bloomberg]. “The Associated Press called the contest for Trump at 8 p.m. Tuesday. He was leading Haley by about 9.6 percentage points with about 50% of the vote counted. This is the second consecutive time the AP has made a quick call in favor of the Republican frontrunner. ‘If we do not win, I think our country is finished,’ Trump said in a victory speech, calling it a ‘bad night’ for Haley and predicting an easy win for his campaign in South Carolina, the next major contest in the GOP presidential primary…. Scores of voters came out to vote creating long lines at some polling places. The number has the potential to break the 322,000 predicted by the New Hampshire Secretary of State, which would be a record for a Republican presidential primary.” • I think “our country” er, trumps “our democracy” (and yes, “our” in both phrases).

Trump (R): “New Hampshire primary: Trump defeats Nikki Haley in second show of 2024 dominance” [Washington Examiner]. “The former president crushed his rivals by at least 30% during the Iowa caucuses. And the win in New Hampshire, the first time a Republican candidate has won both Iowa and New Hampshire in nearly 50 years, will likely see more of the GOP united behind Trump. The last time a Republican won both early states was Gerald Ford in 1976.”

* * *

Trump (R): “Losers, Quitters and the Only One Who Wins” [In These Times]. “Trump has so deeply put his personal stamp on U.S. politics that, even if he were removed from every ballot by a rigorous application of the 14th Amendment, or wound up in jail, or withdrew from the race betting that a pardon from his last remaining rival was a safer way to avoid imprisonment, he would still have won control of his party.” • Not only that, but he’s so gotten into the heads of liberal Democrats that they dream about him. The Man is pure “Achievement Unlocked”!

Trump (R): “NBC News exit poll: Majority of New Hampshire GOP voters say they are not part of the ‘MAGA’ movement” [NBC News]. “Nearly two-thirds (64%) of New Hampshire Republican primary voters said they do not consider themselves part of Trump’s ‘MAGA’ movement, according to early NBC News exit poll results. Among Trump voters, 59% said they consider themselves part of the MAGA movement, while 36% said they do not. Last week’s Iowa entrance poll found that 46% of GOP caucusgoers said they were part of the MAGA movement.”

Trump (R): “The 2024 Republican Choice” [Wall Street Journal]. “The better question in our view is whether Mr. Trump can deliver the policy and political victories that GOP voters want. There are many reasons to think he can’t. Start with the fact that Mr. Trump would be an immediate lame duck. He can’t serve more than one more term, and if he does win it will be narrowly with little political capital. He has never reached an approval rating above 50%, and his rolling seven-week RealClearPolitics average favorability is 41.5%. If there’s a strong third-party ticket, he might win with the smallest plurality since 1912. Mr. Trump would lack the most potent presidential power—the ability to persuade.” • This is why my take on Iowa was not that Trump would find it (all that) difficult to win, but that his (MAGA) base was too narrow to govern (a “funhouse mirror” version of the Democrat problem with its narrow base in the PMC (funny to think of both MAGA and the PMC as symbol manipulators in their own separate realms, but maybe there’s something to it)).

Trump (R): “Teflon Don shows his durability” [New York Post]. “Yet while Haley lives to fight Donald Trump another day, the road only gets harder from here. She had the endorsement of the Granite State’s popular governor, Republican Chris Sununu, and feasted on the votes of non-Republicans, advantages that will be almost impossible to repeat. Still, she did well enough to forestall the media ritual of an autopsy of why and where it all went wrong. The insiders who can be counted on to spill gossipy details about how the once-promising effort lost its way will be put on hold… Haley will get some of that second-guessing after losing in New Hampshire because this was a state widely seen as her last, best chance to stop Trump. And while she promises to soldier on, the results so far suggest that neither she, DeSantis, nor a half-dozen other Republicans who sought the nomination ever had a good chance of success. Instead, it appears to me more likely that Trump would have won no matter who challenged him, how much money they raised or how well they ran their campaigns.” And: “The upshot is that rather than searching for the whys of the other candidates’ defeats, we should instead come to grips with why Trump could prove to be unbeatable in the primaries and why he has a real chance of winning the White House a second time. The short answer is that we are witnessing a durable political movement unlike any seen in modern America. The part of the electorate that hates Trump ­really, really hates him, yet it is matched in size and intensity by those who see him as the last, best hope.” • The stans abide.

* * *

Haley (R): “Nikki Haley Says She’s Only Just Begun to Fight, But She Is Wrong” [Slate]. “Former South Carolina governor and Trump-era U.N. ambassador Nikki Haley started her presidential campaign last February as a second- or third-tier candidate. She was most similar to fellow South Carolinian Tim Scott—both relatively polished, TV-ready Republicans with solid resumés who seemed like they should run for president at some point even if there wasn’t much of a case for why they should be doing it now. Donald Trump was leading the race by a wide margin, and Haley (like Scott, who dropped out in November) made the decision not to attack him directly, hoping that voters would get tired of the ‘chaos’ around Trump on their own. This didn’t happen—chaos is a good thing, apparently, to voters who are mad enough. But Haley did better than the other non-Trump candidates, finding a niche at primary debates as the one person who would at least attempt to sell Republican policies (on abortion, in particular) to a general audience. She got a decent poll bump from this, and attracted financial support from conservatives in the business and finance donor community, most notably the Kochs’ Americans for Prosperity organization. The state she was always set up to do the best in was New Hampshire, which has a local fetish for moderate politicians and rules which allow independent voters to swing on over to whichever primary they feel like voting in. (Centrist Democrats Pete Buttigieg and Amy Klobuchar did well there in 2020, although the contest was still won by a leftist from the adjacent state of Vermont.)…. And …. in this context, Haley lost—and by enough that the Associated Press called the race ten minutes after the last polls in the state closed at 8 p.m. ET. She can now look forward to voting in South Carolina, where she trails Trump by 30, and then to … a bunch of other states where Trump leads by more than that.” • Hence the immediate descent into the gutter, aided and eagerly abetted by the scorps (“press corps”).

DeSantis (R): “13 reasons why Ron DeSantis didn’t become the Republican nominee” [Semafor]. A good old-fashioned beating. This caught my eye: “Trump did real damage early. Trump, angered by the idea that a ‘disloyal’ DeSantis would ‘betray’ him after his early support and equally frustrated with the praise he was receiving within the Republican party, attacked the Florida governor early — and hard. For months, DeSantis sustained name-calling, rambling statements dismissing his accomplishments, sexual innuendo, and efforts to cut down his support before it even really began. And for a long time, DeSantis let the attacks land, opting not to reply while also remaining cagey about his 2024 intentions. With Trump weakened, the high-road approach may have looked like a sign of confidence to DeSantis. But it wasn’t long before at least some of Trump’s attacks started to chip at his armor. One memorable ad by Trump’s top allied super PAC combined a Daily Beast story about DeSantis eating pudding with his fingers with his history of support for changes to Social Security benefits in Congress. Combined with DeSantis’ own self-imposed wounds, the attacks began to eat away at one of the Florida governor’s biggest assets: His claim that he was more electable than Trump. It was, as Trump ally Michael Caputo put it at the time, “a textbook crib kill scenario.'” • We often forget that Trump can run, or delegate the running of, a very effective campaign. “Chaotic” a “textbook crib kill scenario” is not. (Which is why I remain puzzled that Trump’s challenge to the 2020 result was such a fiasco, legally and in every other way. Rudy? Really? Wouldn’t raising the issue of the 50+ intelligence officers signing onto a very well-publicized letter that the Hunter laptop was Russian disinformation have been a slam-dunk? “Not because it is easy, but because it is hard”… Not necessarily words to live by in politics.

DeSantis (R): “The Emasculation of Ron DeSantis by the Bully Donald Trump” [New York Time]. • Spare me. I’m so, so tired of the liberal trope that reduces disfavored or unpleasant all power relations to “bullying” (even in international relations, a ginormous category error; [you know who] is a “bully,” of course). It’s infantile. Is the world a daycare center, and liberals the finger-wagging schoolmarms? Wait, don’t answer that.

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Biden (D): “Biden wins a New Hampshire write-in campaign” [Politico]. Handy chart:

On “unprocessed write-ins”: “When the Democratic ballots get counted, they will initially be counted as an ‘unprocessed write-in vote.’ As election night goes on, those ‘unprocessed’ ballots will be divided into two categories: ‘Biden write-ins’ and ‘other write-ins.'” • So “I hate them all” gets tossed into the “unprocessed write-in” bucket. 18.4% unprocessed write-ins is hardly a good sign for Biden.

Biden (D): “A Top Biden Aide Is Taking the Reins of His Re-election Campaign” [New York Times]. “President Biden has approved a shake-up of the leadership of his campaign, and will dispatch a top White House aide to take over functional control of his re-election effort just as former President Donald J. Trump appears to be seizing control of the Republican primary contest to oppose him. The aide, Jennifer O’Malley Dillon, who was the campaign manager for Mr. Biden’s 2020 campaign and has served as a deputy chief of staff in the White House since he became president, will move to the Biden 2024 headquarters in Wilmington, Del., and direct the campaign’s efforts, according to five people familiar with the discussions.”

Biden (D): “Joe Biden is getting the opponent he wants. Is he wrong?” [Financial Times]. “Joe Biden’s campaign has been trying for months to convince anyone who will listen that the Republican primaries are a side show and that the American electorate needs to steel itself for another year of Trumpian chaos…. It may sound naive to appeal to morality in our age of bare-knuckle partisanship, but I’m going to risk it: holding up Trump as a threat to American democracy and then hoping he wins the Republican nomination is, even for those hardened pragmatists who populate the political classes, incredibly cynical. One either fears for the future of democracy, or one doesn’t. Fearing for the future of democracy — and then aspiring to use its potential demise as a campaign talking point reeks of hypocrisy. It also undermines the high ground team Biden wants to occupy.” Shut up. You’re talking to liberal Democrats, and they’re smarter than you. More: “National elections in the US are generally won in one of two ways: by energising your base so that they turn out in greater numbers than your opponent’s, or peeling off “swing” voters with your centrist appeal. Doing both is exceedingly difficult, because the hot-button issues that rile the base tend to turn off those in the centre. In post-Ronald Reagan political history, only Barack Obama in 2008 (winning nominally Republican states such as Florida, North Carolina and Ohio) and George HW Bush in 1988 (who won Democratic strongholds including California, Illinois and New Jersey) managed the feat. By elevating Trump as a threat to democratic norms, the Biden team appears to be aiming for option one — a turnout victory. That makes sense, given how energised Democrats flocked to the polls in 2020 to vote Trump out of office, and did the same in the 2022 midterms to register their anger about the loss of abortion rights. But 2024 is shaping up to be very different. Voters are not enthused by a rematch of two senior citizens. Turnout was exceedingly low in Iowa (though not in New Hampshire), and ratings for cable news coverage of the campaign have been disappointing.” • If only Kamala Harris were, like, eighteen years old. Chronologically, I mean.

Biden (D): “The Problems With Biden” [Harold Mayerson, The American Prospect]. “The presidential campaigns of leftists Cornel West and Jill Stein, the conspiracy-addled Robert Kennedy Jr., and, should No Labels anoint him, Joe Manchin, all effectively deny that a re-elected Donald Trump poses a fundamental threat to American democracy that isn’t remotely comparable to the presumed imperfections of a Biden second term. Yet resurrecting the “logic” that (mis)informed the communists of the early 1930s, they proclaim that Biden is every bit as insupportable as Trump. Should Trump win the election, historians will surely view them as just as dangerously deranged as the communists who focused their ire on social democrats rather than on Hitler.” • Hmm.

* * *

Phillips (D): “Phillips campaign rules out ‘No Labels’ run” [The Hill]. “Rep. Dean Phillips (D-Minn.), the long shot challenging President Biden for the White House, will not run as a candidate with No Labels. Phillips’s leading campaign adviser Jeff Weaver confirmed to The Hill that the congressman and insurgent candidate does not intend to seek a third-party or independent bid with the group, despite the candidate’s apparent flirtation with the idea over the weekend.” • Wait. Jeff Weaver? That Jeff Weaver?

* * *

“Opinion: Panicking over polls showing Donald Trump ahead of President Biden? Please stop” [Los Angeles Times]. “The trouble is that horse race numbers can drive almost any narrative that politicians or journalists find expedient regardless of whether it’s accurate; see the great ‘red wave’ media frenzy of the 2022 midterm elections, which of course proved to be the opposite of the truth. The mainstream media’s coverage of campaigns from such a standpoint is not only mistaken but also irresponsible. Such coverage is doing to politics what modern cooking shows have done to gastronomy: turning it into something like a sporting competition in which much of the substance that could serve the viewer — such as how to cook anything — is lost in covering dramatic culinary contests. Likewise, instead of helping voters make informed decisions based on the differences between candidates, pundits (including me) spend a great deal of time making the case for or against a candidate based not on their policy positions but on their polling position. What’s lost is what the different records, beliefs and policy positions of the candidates might mean for voters’ everyday lives.”

The Wizard of Kalorama™

“The Inside Story Of Barack Obama’s 2024 Campaign Calculations” [Talking Points Memo]. “Facing a country flirting with authoritarianism, Obama is particularly focused on Democrats’ need to maintain the support of young Americans — a key constituency that at this moment seems to be slipping from the party’s grasp. A spate of worrying recent polls for Democrats show the young voters that helped deliver Biden’s victory in 2020 expressing severe discontent with the president, citing reasons ranging from the war in Gaza, to the cost of living, and climate change. Some even contend that, given the choice between the two 2020 candidates, they will this time vote for Trump. While he stops short of any express criticism of Biden, who served as his vice president, or other Democrats, Obama is unmistakably of the opinion that they’ve got a lot of political work to do. ‘The truth is we don’t just need young people to vote in November,’ said the source, who requested anonymity to discuss Obama’s thinking. ‘We need them to work hard and stand in line and call their friends and throw everything they have at this. And so I think it’s fair to say that young people will be the ball game, as they were in 2020.'” • 2008’s 18-year-olds are now [alllow me to break out my calculator: 2024 – 2008 = 16] 34 years old, laden with debt, can’t get a mortgage, amd not everyone can be an influemcer. So let me know how today’s youth vote works out. Those that didn’t die suddenly, I mean.


“I am in earnest — I will not equivocate — I will not excuse — I will not retreat a single inch — AND I WILL BE HEARD.” –William Lloyd Garrison

Resources, United States (National): Transmission (CDC); Wastewater (CDC, Biobot; includes many counties; Wastewater Scan, includes drilldown by zip); Variants (CDC; Walgreens); “Iowa COVID-19 Tracker” (in IA, but national data). “Infection Control, Emergency Management, Safety, and General Thoughts” (especially on hospitalization by city).

Lambert here: Readers, thanks for the collective effort. To update any entry, do feel free to contact me at the address given with the plants. Please put “COVID” in the subject line. Thank you!

Resources, United States (Local): AK (dashboard); AL (dashboard); AR (dashboard); AZ (dashboard); CA (dashboard; Marin, dashboard; Stanford, wastewater; Oakland, wastewater); CO (dashboard; wastewater); CT (dashboard); DE (dashboard); FL (wastewater); GA (wastewater); HI (dashboard); IA (wastewater reports); ID (dashboard, Boise; dashboard, wastewater, Central Idaho; wastewater, Coeur d’Alene; dashboard, Spokane County); IL (wastewater); IN (dashboard); KS (dashboard; wastewater, Lawrence); KY (dashboard, Louisville); LA (dashboard); MA (wastewater); MD (dashboard); ME (dashboard); MI (wastewater; wastewater); MN (dashboard); MO (wastewater); MS (dashboard); MT (dashboard); NC (dashboard); ND (dashboard; wastewater); NE (dashboard); NH (wastewater); NJ (dashboard); NM (dashboard); NV (dashboard; wastewater, Southern NV); NY (dashboard); OH (dashboard); OK (dashboard); OR (dashboard); PA (dashboard); RI (dashboard); SC (dashboard); SD (dashboard); TN (dashboard); TX (dashboard); UT (wastewater); VA (dashboard); VT (dashboard); WA (dashboard; dashboard); WI (wastewater); WV (wastewater); WY (wastewater).

Resources, Canada (National): Wastewater (Government of Canada).

Resources, Canada (Provincial): ON (wastewater); QC (les eaux usées); BC (wastewater); BC, Vancouver (wastewater).

Hat tips to helpful readers: Alexis, anon (2), Art_DogCT, B24S, CanCyn, ChiGal, Chuck L, Festoonic, FM, FreeMarketApologist (4), Gumbo, hop2it, JB, JEHR, JF, JL Joe, John, JM (10), JustAnotherVolunteer, JW, KatieBird, LL, Michael King, KF, LaRuse, mrsyk, MT, MT_Wild, otisyves, Petal (6), RK (2), RL, RM, Rod, square coats (11), tennesseewaltzer, Tom B., Utah, Bob White (3).

Stay safe out there!

* * *

Covid is Airborne

“Excessively farting passenger forces American Airlines flight to turn around” [New York Post]. • But infecting other passengers with an asymptomatic, airborne Level Three Biohazard because you won’t wear a mask? Go right ahead!


“‘Full-Blown Crisis:’ Mass General Out Of Hospital Beds” [Patch]. “In addition to capacity problems in the hospitals, health officials attribute crowding to workforce shortages and seasonal upticks in viral infections.” • Ah, “seasonal upticks.” Good thing HICPAC‘s “Infection Control Team,” in the person of HICPAC member Erica Shenoy, has implemented universal mandatory respirator use throughout the facility! Oh, wait…


“Young-onset dementia growing in Canada. What’s behind this rise?” [Global News]. • ‘Tis a mystery!

Elite Maleficence

“Disturbing Details Of Fauci’s Testimony Leave No Option But To Frogmarch Him Down Memory Lane” [The Federalist]. Quoting The Federalist makes my skin crawl, because I actually admire The Federalist Papers. But here we are: “According to lawmakers who were there, the former head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID) and former chief medical adviser to the president — the man who once equated himself with science itself — offered a stunning concession that the six-foot social distancing edict ‘sort of just appeared’ out of nowhere and was likely not based on scientific data.” • I don’t love Fauci, but: This is so [family blogging] vacuous, even for the knuckle-draggers hip deep in the conservative fever swamp. As is well known to those who have done the reading, the six-foot figure is a corollary to droplet dogma: Since droplets are ballistic, they fall within a given radius when coughed out, a radius that, in the dogma, is six feet. Stay outside that radius, and you won’t be infected, or so goes the story. Hence, social distancing. But as readers know, the dominant mode of Covid transmission is not “hacking” out loogies; Covid transmits via aerosols from breathing, talking, shouting, singing. Summarizing, from this incredibly intricate forensic history of science in Wired:

According to the medical canon, nearly all respiratory infections transmit through coughs or sneezes: Whenever a sick person hacks, bacteria and viruses spray out like bullets from a gun, quickly falling and sticking to any surface within a blast radius of 3 to 6 feet. If these droplets alight on a nose or mouth (or on a hand that then touches the face), they can cause an infection.

So, when The Federalist writes “In the U.S., the six-foot rule officially emerged between early and mid-March” they’re simply wrong; the documents they do cite reproduce a rule that’s been “canon” for years. (The pseuds at the Federalist also write. ludicrously, of “the folklore of asymptomatic spread,” providing in one article a fascinating seamless transition from wrong and bad to outright eugenicist. The level of asymptomatic spread may be at issue, but a cursory search of the literature, as my connectivity fails, shows asymptomatic spread is not “folklore”: here, here, here, and here; meta-analysis; and in the vulgate here and here). It’s a good thing I started a little early, because now I need to go take a bath.)

* * *

TABLE 1: Daily Covid Charts

National[1] Biobot January 23: Regional[2] Biobot January 23:

Variants[3] CDC January 20 Emergency Room Visits[4] CDC January 13
New York[5] New York State, data January 22: National [6] CDC January 13:
National[7] Walgreens January 21: Ohio[8] Cleveland Clinic January 20:
Travelers Data
Positivity[8] CDC January 1: Variants[9] CDC January 1:
Weekly deaths New York Times January 6: Percent of deaths due to Covid-19 New York Times January 6:


1) for charts new today; all others are not updated. No stars, no updates.

2) For a full-size/full-resolution image, Command-click (MacOS) or right-click (Windows) on the chart thumbnail and “open image in new tab.”


[1] Even after a decline, we’re still higher than any of the surges under Trump.

[2] Steep decline in the Northeast!

[3] “As of May 11, genomic surveillance data will be reported biweekly, based on the availability of positive test specimens.” “Biweeekly: 1. occurring every two weeks. 2. occurring twice a week; semiweekly.” Looks like CDC has chosen sense #1. In essence, they’re telling us variants are nothing to worry about. Time will tell.

[4] “Charts and data provided by CDC, updates Wednesday by 8am. For the past year, using a rolling 52-week period.” So not the entire pandemic, FFS (the implicit message here being that Covid is “just like the flu,” which is why the seasonal “rolling 52-week period” is appropriate for bothMR SUBLIMINAL I hate these people so much. Notice also that this chart shows, at least for its time period, that Covid is not seasonal, even though CDC is trying to get us to believe that it is, presumably so they can piggyback on the existing institutional apparatus for injections. And of course, we’re not even getting into the quality of the wastewater sites that we have as a proxy for Covid infection overall.

[5] Decrease for the city aligns with wastewater data.

[6] “Maps, charts, and data provided by CDC, updates weekly for the previous MMWR week (Sunday-Saturday) on Thursdays (Deaths, Emergency Department Visits, Test Positivity) and weekly the following Mondays (Hospitalizations) by 8 pm ET†”.

[7] -0.7%. (It would be interesting to survey this population generally; these are people who, despite a tsunami of official propaganda and enormous peer pressure, went and got tested anyhow.)

[8] Lambert here: Percentage and absolute numbers down.

[9] Up, albeit in the rear view mirror.

Stats Watch

There are no official statistics of interest today.

* * *

Manufactuing: “Boeing, not Spirit, mis-installed piece that blew off Alaska MAX 9 jet, industry source says” [Dominic Gates. Seattle Times]. “The fuselage panel that blew off an Alaska Airlines jet earlier this month was removed for repair then reinstalled improperly by Boeing mechanics on the Renton final assembly line… Last week, an anonymous whistleblower — who appears to have access to Boeing’s manufacturing records of the work done assembling the specific Alaska Airlines jet that suffered the blowout — on an aviation website separately provided many additional details about how the door plug came to be removed and then mis-installed. ‘The reason the door blew off is stated in black and white in Boeing’s own records,’ the whistleblower wrote. ‘It is also very, very stupid and speaks volumes about the quality culture at certain portions of the business.’ The self-described Boeing insider said company records show four bolts that prevent the door plug from sliding up off the door frame stop pads that take the pressurization loads in flight, ‘were not installed when Boeing delivered the airplane.’ the whistleblower stated. ‘Our own records reflect this.’ NTSB investigators already publicly raised the possibility that the bolts had not been installed. The account goes on to describe shocking lapses in Boeing’s quality control process in Renton. The work of the mechanics on the door plug should have been formally inspected and signed off by a Boeing quality inspector. It wasn’t, the whistleblower wrote, because of a process failure and the use of two separate systems to record what work was accomplished. Boeing’s 737 production system is described as ‘a rambling, shambling, disaster waiting to happen.'” • Hoo boy. A little discussion needed on which pencil-necked MBA supplied the rationaliztion to the bonus-driven greedhead executives who who in management decided that the 737 airframe had not reached the end of its useful life.

Manufacturing: “‘We have a problem:’ Boeing 757 loses wheel while taxiing” [Reuters]. “The nose wheel of a Boeing 757 passenger jet operated by Delta Air Lines (DAL.N), opens new tab popped off and rolled away as the plane was lining up for takeoff over the weekend from Atlanta’s international airport, according to the airline and regulators. A Federal Aviation Administration notice filed on Monday said the aircraft was lining up and waiting for takeoff at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport when the ‘nose wheel came off and rolled down the hill.'” • Down the hill, just like Boeing.

Manufacturing: “At United and Alaska airlines, frustration with Boeing’s manufacturing problems is boiling over” [Associated Press]. “The leaders of United Airlines and Alaska Airlines took turns Tuesday blasting Boeing over manufacturing problems that have led to the grounding of more than 140 of their planes, with United’s CEO saying his airline will consider alternatives to buying a future, larger version of the Boeing 737 Max…. Boeing said workers at its 737 factory would stop work on Thursday to hold a special session to focus on quality.” • Oh. A “special session.” Is that like a “sternly worded letter”?

* * *

Today’s Fear & Greed Index: 77 Extreme Greed (previous close: 73 Greed) [CNN]. One week ago: 61 (Greed). (0 is Extreme Fear; 100 is Extreme Greed). Last updated Jan 24 at 1:21:37 PM ET.

Zeitgeist Watch

“Polyamory: Lots of Sex, Even More Scheduling” [Wall Street Journal]. “It’s expensive: restaurants, hotels, cute outfits and even condoms add up. … Twenty-two percent of Americans say they have engaged in consensual non-monogamy, which is also sometimes called ethical non-monogamy, at some point in their life, according to a nationally representative study by researchers at the Kinsey Institute at Indiana University. That’s almost the same percentage—23%—as people living in the U.S. who have a bachelor’s degree as their highest degree.” • So, the Venn Diagram is a circle? And if know my PMC, it’s the scheduling that really floats their boats….

“Florida anger management specialist accused of fatally shooting homeless man” [NBC]. • Oh.

Class Warfare

“Ethics Ratings of Nearly All Professions Down in U.S. [Gallup]. Handy chart:

News of the Wired

“HP CEO evokes James Bond-style hack via ink cartridges” [Ars Technica]. The deck: “Our long-term objective is to make printing a subscription.” • No.

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Contact information for plants: Readers, feel free to contact me at lambert [UNDERSCORE] strether [DOT] corrente [AT] yahoo [DOT] com, to (a) find out how to send me a check if you are allergic to PayPal and (b) to find out how to send me images of plants. Vegetables are fine! Fungi, lichen, and coral are deemed to be honorary plants! If you want your handle to appear as a credit, please place it at the start of your mail in parentheses: (thus). Otherwise, I will anonymize by using your initials. See the previous Water Cooler (with plant) here. From AC:

AC writes: “The misty trees were photographed at the beginning of the year in the Colestin Valley, Oregon.” A lovely photo (and I feel a little befogged myself just now. “Sometimes I wonder if I’m in my right mind. Then it passes over and I’m as lucid as before” –Samuel Becket).

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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. flora

          Nah. Frank Underwood’s given last name was Charlie (or Charles, a disputed point), but he dropped it in favor of his middle name Underwood for political PR reasons. Nothing to do with the great old Underwood typewriter company.

    1. sLambert Strether Post author

      > Typo

      “A man of genius makes no mistakes. His errors are volitional and are the portals of discovery.” –Stephen Dedalus in James Joyce, Ulysses.

      But what typo? Is it gone now?

      1. lyman alpha blob

        There was a typo due to a missing vowel before the letter ‘f’ in your preliminary post that appeared to be telling us to go [family blog] ourselves. All gone now!

        1. Lambert Strether Post author

          Now I understand. It’s a meme! The original:

          (I wish I could find an original, because I read these advertisements for “speedwriting” in magazines, in the days of my youth, but I can’t find any. Small black and white ads, in the back, next to the ads for X-Ray glasses.)

          See, e.g.:

          I’ve used this several times in similar situations with potential connectivity problems, but the potential problem never materialized until this post, when I published prematurely.

          Also interesting conceptually:

          This chapter introduces the idea that language exhibits statistical patterns that are crucial to our ability to learn and use it. “Statistical” means that patterns differ in frequency (how often they occur) and probability (given one pattern, how likely is it to occur with another one?). “Patterns” occur across units such as letters, phonemes, and other building-blocks of written and spoken language. We’ve learned a lot about these properties of language by analyzing very large samples of texts and speech (“data-mining”)…

          • Statistical patterns arise from restrictions (“constraints”) on how the elements within each level combine. For example, only a very small subset of the millions of possible ways that letters can be combined form actual words. Talk is a word, tilk could be a word, but itlk cannot be a word. Readers know in advance that some combinations of letters will not occur. That makes it far easier to recognize the ones that do.

          Ursula LeGuin is a master of coining proper nouns and names that sound completely authentic (i.e., satisfy the constraints) but are in fact not words.

  1. ambrit

    Is this a photo of your “escape route” to Fredericton, New Brunswick?
    Good to see you preparing for the “purges.”

  2. Lambert Strether Post author

    Whoops, sorry for the premature publication. I had a sudden hankering for travel, I am on the road, facing connectivity issues, hence pressed temporally. All finished now!

    1. flora

      Yep. This is the reason I send anything of importance I want to arrive safely to its destination by USPS, the United States Postal Service. The USPS has their own trucks and planes and transportation infrastructure, very reliable. I know many may sometimes scoff at their delivery times. Even I do that. However. I’ve never lost a package or envelope by sending with the USPS if sent with a tracking number. I send many packages and envelopes this way that I want to trackably and securely arrive. If something hasn’e arrived as expected it’s pretty easy to track down. It has saved me more than a few problems. ymmv.

      1. flora

        adding: there’s been more than one occasion where I’ve been in a long line at the local USPS to mail in my tax forms for the IRS’s yearly or quarterly schedule when a young and delightfully charming young person, probably an international college student at the local uni, ahead of me in line, turned to me and asked why there are so many people at the Post Office this day? I do like young college people.

  3. Carolinian

    Thanks for the extensive NH coverage. No sign so far of Haley/SC although I did see one of her door knob hangers lying on the ground where it had been tossed in disgust (my poetic license). They really should get her a little bit of a makeover because her campaign lit makes her look scary and fierce whereas the long suffering public wants a hug.

    And 30s US communists were “deranged”? Tailgunner Meyerson at the Prospect.

    1. ambrit

      Many of them were ‘deranged’ enough to turn into Neos.
      Where are the Wobblies when you need them?

    2. steppenwolf fetchit

      The Communists being referred to in that item about ” Communists too deranged to focus on Hitler” were the German Communists in 1930’s Germany, not the American Communists in 1930’s America.

      1. Carolinian

        Ok. But in the rest of Lambert’s quote Meyerson is saying Trump is Hitler so that is still McCarthy-ism of the left if the Prospect is in fact some version of the left. I haven’t read it in years but recall it to be mostly a Democratic and therefore Biden mouthpiece.

        Of course anyone is entitled to believe that about Trump, but then calling those who disagree “deranged” makes one wonder who is deranged. I think the lawyers call Dem rhetoric “pounding the table.”

          1. The Rev Kev

            Once at the UN he even pounded the podium with his shoe for dramatic effect. Astute watchers noticed, however, that he was still wearing both shoes on his feet. He always was a bit of a showman.

      2. ChrisRUEcon

        I saw Lambert’s “Hmmmm” here, and immediately thought of our friends at historic.ly. Something about that remark reeked of historical revisionism. I’m pretty sure Esha and crew would have a better response than I would, but here is my take – anything that seeks to posit Biden as a good choice for the US populace has now been proven to be utter BS. An alternate title for the article could have just been the five letter abbreviation “VBNMW”. While is may be absolutely true that Communists in Germany had little or no love for Social Democrats, it is also true that Hitler didn’t rise because of fighting between those two groups. Hitler rose because the Capital class was determined to use nationalism as a blunt force tool to re-privatize Germany and get rid of both the Communists and the SocDems. Please see “The Economy Of Evil” (via historic.ly).

        Hitler’s economic policy was Mussolini’s policy on steroids. In the 1920s, the NSDAP was a minor party. In the 1932 elections, the Nazi Party did not have an outright majority. According to the Nuremberg Trial transcripts, on January 4, 1933, bankers and industrialists had a secret backroom deal with then-Chancellor Von Papen to make Hitler the Chancellor of Germany in a coalition. According to banker Kurt Baron von Schröder:

        The negotiations took place exclusively between Hitler and Papen. [ . . . ] Papen went on to say that he thought it best to form a government in which the conservative and nationalist elements that had supported him were represented together with the Nazis. He suggested that this new government should, if possible, be led by Hitler and himself together. Then Hitler made a long speech in which he said that, if he were to be elected Chancellor, Papen’s followers could participate in his (Hitler’s) Government as Ministers if they were willing to support his policy which was planning many alterations in the existing state of affairs. He outlined these alterations, including the removal of all Social Democrats, Communists and Jews from leading positions in Germany and the restoration of order in public life. Von Papen and Hitler reached agreement in principle whereby many of the disagreements between them could be removed and cooperation might be possible. It was agreed that further details could be worked out later either in Berlin or some other suitable place

  4. antidlc

    Some states are loosening their Covid isolation guidelines, shifting away from CDC recommendations

    The CDC recommends at least five days of isolation because people are likely to be most infectious during that time, and the science around that hasn’t changed. The recent order from the California health department notes that the potential infectious period spans from two days before through 10 days after symptoms or a positive test.

    But experts broadly agree that easing isolation timeframes won’t significantly increase community transmission or severe outcomes — in part because the virus has been circulating at very high levels, even with more restrictive guidance in place.

    Experts broadly agree?

    No mention of long COVID, of course.

    1. ChrisRUEcon

      > the science around that hasn’t changed


      Yeah, the “science” of {Delta|United]’s CEO meeting with Biden and telling asking him to make the guidance five, not ten days.


  5. antidlc

    RE: Maskstravaganza

    Good thing HICPAC‘s “Infection Control Team,” in the person of HICPAC member Erica Shenoy, has implemented universal mandatory respirator use throughout the facility! Oh, wait…

    Would that be the same Erica Shenoy?

    Universal Masking in Health Care Settings: A Pandemic Strategy Whose Time Has Come and Gone, For Now

  6. lyman alpha blob

    RE: Haley feasting on the votes of non-Republicans

    I’ve seen the liberal goodthinkers claim this wasn’t really happening. However, my better half tells me that a NH friend who is an administrator for the education department at a NH college, suffers from an extreme case of the TDS (in other words, about as PMC as you can get), and is a registered independent but votes D all the way as far as I know, joyfully went out and cast her vote for Nikki Haley yesterday to screw with the Donald. Anecdotal to be sure, but I’m sure she wasn’t the only one.

    In the links above, it notes probably more than 300K votes in the republican primary but only a little over 100K for the democrats. You’d need to compare with historical totals, but assuming that normally you’d see roughly equal amounts of votes in both primaries, it sure looks like plenty of liberal leaning non-republicans voted in the republican primary. Quick check of 2016 primary results when both primaries were contested shows ~ 250K votes cast in each, if wikipedia is to be trusted.


    As for the unprocessed write ins, I have it on good authority that 100% of those write ins were for “Let’s Go Brandon”. ;)

    1. Pat

      I am in awe of their control. I wouldn’t have been able to hold back considering the massive disrespect Biden and his minions have shown the voters of New Hampshire. I just can’t imagine that there aren’t one or two votes for a version of “Family Blog Brandon.”

    2. Carolinian


      Perhaps more telling than the night’s election results was some of the exit polling data. According to CNN’s exit poll, 70 percent of Trump’s voters were registered Republicans, whereas 27 percent were registered undeclared. Haley’s numbers were the exact opposite: 70 percent of Haley’s voters were undeclared and only 27 percent were registered Republicans. The CNN exit poll also found that 49 percent of Republican primary voters were actually registered Republicans, while 47 percent were undeclared voters.

      1. Randall Flagg

        But if Haley’s money dries up.
        I have to say this headline at Zero Hedge below had me doing a double take. Must have been written by a middle schooler… or maybe it’s just me.

        Reid Hoffman Pulls Out Of Nikki Haley After New Hampshire Pounding
        A little bit of the post included

        Following Tuesday’s massive loss to Donald Trump in the New Hampshire primary, Republican candidate Nikki Haley has lost a major Democrat source of support – billionaire (hoax funding) LinkedIn founder, Reid Hoffman.

        According to CNBC, Hoffman gave $250,000 to a pro-Haley super PAC last year, but has no immediate plans to help her again.

        Hoffman, suffering from a severe case of Trump Derangement Syndrome (TDS), wrote in December that while he supports Joe Biden, he thought that Haley had the best chance of beating Trump in the Republican primary.

        Reid Hoffman Kim White | CNBC
        “If America is to avoid another Trump presidency, it will be because Trump loses an election next year. If he is to lose, it will either be to Nikki Haley in the primary, or Joe Biden in the general,” he wrote on LinkedIn, noting that he gave to Haley’s super PAC after listening to JPMorgan CEO Jamie Dimon speak at the DealBook conference in support of Haley.

        That calculus for Hoffman appears to have changed as Haley lost the Iowa caucus and New Hampshire primary to Trump. Hoffman is one of Haley’s first wealthy donors to start heading for the exits as she tries to remain in the primary race against Trump.

        A Republican fundraiser told CNBC on Wednesday that three clients who each helped Haley raise up to $100,000 for her campaign are now opting out of assisting the former U.N. ambassador.


    3. petal

      In Hanover(richest town in NH), Nimarata Haley beat Trump 1487-228. If you scroll down this page, you can get the results by town for both parties. It’s interesting to look at when you have a feel for the PMC-ness/financial comfort of the towns.

    4. Ashley

      im in vermont, which has a similar-ish primary process to NH – anyone, regardless of party affiliation can vote in any of the party primaries. we’re given three ballots: one dem, one rep, and one progressive (our own little third party, pretty much only applicable to chittenden county where they have some power). you fill out the ballot of your choice and the other two ballots are discarded.

      i consider myself a leftist independent, as in the democrats are a right wing party to me (and as ardent defenders of capitalism, global imperialism, war and the status quo, they are a right wing party). i routinely vote on the republican primary ballot in VT not because i like the candidates, but as a strategic measure to vote for the ‘least crazy’ candidate as an insurance policy against my preferred candidate (none, tbh) losing.

      states with open primaries like VT encourage less extremist candidates. states with closed primaries, like NY my former state, encourage more extremist candidates. political strategists and their fellow vermin can whine all they want about NH, most of the country is independent and nearly all of us are disenfranchised in the general election due to the electoral college making only a handful of states matter. at least the people in VT and NH (and other open-ish states) are not disenfranchised during the primary process.

      funny how politicians and their counterparts hate democracy when its inconvenient to them.

  7. Glen

    Regarding –

    “The Inside Story Of Barack Obama’s 2024 Campaign Calculations” [Talking Points Memo]. “Facing a country flirting with authoritarianism, Obama is particularly focused on Democrats’ need to maintain the support of young Americans

    This is like a joke, right? The Democrats are ALREADY rigging the primary vote, and were caught rigging the primaries in 2020. The Republicans are actually having much less rigging primaries. But I guess this comes back to the current functional definition of when a thing is a thing – it’s authoritarianism only when SOMEBODY ELSE does it.

    1. steppenwolf fetchit

      Sanders was securing the support of young Americans twice in two primary contests. And the Sanders campaign was sabotaged both times, especially the second time by the Wizard of Kalorama himself. And in sabotaging and doublecrossing that second Sanders campaign, Obama repelled and threw away the support of young Americans for the Democratic Party, possibly for decades to come. ( Which he had already done a lot of with his co-ordinated Fusion-Center paramilitary shutdown of Occupy).

      If numbers of young Americans vote for Trump, they will be voting to “kick this sh*t over sideways and stomp on it” in hopes to blast a hole in the wall. And escape through it.

      Meanwhile, I think Haley will decide to be the Kamikaze Trump-killer which Christie aspired to be. She will run through the very last primary election unless the money runs out to zero before that. She will try getting under Trump’s personal skin in order to get him to melt down on TV or somewhere too embarrassingly to deny. She will then hope to collect the rewards from never-Trumper Republicans years in the future if they are able to reconquer and re-occupy their party.

      1. Jason Boxman

        Well, they both have adulterous predilections, maybe they can sleep with each other and then run off into the sunset. But try not to imagine that in your head. You’re welcome!

        1. steppenwolf fetchit

          Obama is assuming the young people will bite the can open with their teeth because he tells them to.

          Is he really that charming and compelling a leadership-figure?

      2. Carolinian

        You may be right about Haley wanting to do what you say but campaigning is expensive not to mention exhausting. I think she’s gone after SC. Trump is 30 points ahead here.

        Reading the above coverage even the MSM has written her off except for the Murdoch Journal.

        1. steppenwolf fetchit

          If Haley pursues a kamikaze self-sacrifice run through the very last primary, then my prediction-stock will go up.

          If she drops out shortly after South Carolina or after Super Tuesday at the latest, then my prediction-stock will go down.

      3. Ashley

        were not even young anymore! i was one of those 18 year olds in 2008 who’s now 34 (soon to be 35). i didnt vote for obama then because i saw through his BS, and felt vindicated when he filled his cabinet with goldman sachs bros and then attacked us during occupy wall street, which i was part of way back then in NY. and became the drone strike commander in chief extra-judiciously killing americans abroad! and as this blog states, im debt laden and unable to get a mortgage.

        im also livid with rage that –still!– none of the bankers in 2008 went to jail, and even worse, our funding and support of the palestinian genocide.

        LOL if they think ill hold my nose and vote for biden again. absolutely not. i regret dong it in 2020. nearly everything has gotten objectively worse for me since 2020. and thats ignoring our genocidal foreign policy and merely focusing on domestic issues.

        i live in VT, almost everyone i know under 45 has had it with biden and will not be voting for him again. some are even willing to vote for trump. if it werent for the project 2025 nonsense, id be voting for trump! and i hate him! but he didnt start any new wars, and thats a massive point in his favor for me. if republicans could leave LGBTQ people alone, come up with a sane and non-cruel immigration policy besides ‘let them drown in the rio grande after being cut with razor wire’, stop controlling womens bodies and keep their “christianity” out of my life, id be voting for them. theres no objective difference between the two pro capitalist parties anyway, one wants to bomb the middle east to smithereens with american flags on the fighter jets and one wants to do it with the progress pride flag and black lives matter flag on the fighter jets.

    2. Feral Finster

      “The Republicans are actually having much less rigging primaries.”

      This is not because Team R is so principled (one may recall that in 2016, the RNC canceled primaries in states that Trump was likely to win), but because they cannot rely on the MSM to act as their unpaid public relations department.

    3. Acacia

      No disagreement with your take on how the Dem Party has been twiddling the primaries, but I would be curious to see an article somewhere that documents this with as close to a smoking gun as possible.

      This, so that I can point my Blue Team friends/co-workers at it, and ask why they think “authoritarianism” is such a big problem ;)

      1. mrsyk

        Here are a couple of links. No “smoking guns”, yet more than enough to yearn for paper ballots. This official results vs raw exit poll data analysis site, TDMS Research, is well worth a look and has been linked to a number of times here at NC. You will find on the upper right links to analysis of 2020 D primary results discrepancies for Texas, Vermont, Missouri, Michigan, and California.
        This Gateway Pundit article “Who’s “Cleaning” Our Voter Rolls? Soros Funded ERIC Is Now Used In 31 States” was linked to here on Water Cooler on January 21, 2022. Here I will remind you of the Brooklyn voter roll fiasco of the 2016 New York State D primary.

  8. Mikel

    “Should Trump win the election, historians will surely view them as just as dangerously deranged as the communists who focused their ire on social democrats rather than on Hitler.”

    For crying out loud, Hitler was APPOINTED chancellor. He always had those military connections. He started hanging out at the National Socialist German Workers Party meetings as a military spy.

    1. Feral Finster

      Hitler and the SA weren’t especially popular with the German officer class, at least not until the Night Of The Long Knives.

      Even afterwards, the Junkers complained that Hitler had ever only been a corporal.

    2. rookieEMT

      Alright, I now feel ill will towards Harold.

      It’s the same attitude that drove me right out of the Democrats. Were obligated to support them no matter how many times they backstab the left and most progressives. It’s also our fault if they fail.

      Isn’t this an insult towards the historic social democrats of Germany. They were probably much better faith actors than the Democrats right now.

      1. Daniil Adamov

        IIRC they had the great idea of letting Hitler come to power and be sunk by the economic problems that they could not deal with themselves, allowing them to regain power at the next election. Is that better faith? It certainly isn’t smarter.

    3. LifelongLib

      The “Socialist” moniker was added after Hitler had joined an earlier version of the party (initially as a spy, but IIRC he subsequently left the army). Hitler opposed the name change but some members considered themselves socialists and insisted on it. They were among the people he got rid of later.

      1. Daniil Adamov

        Goebbels and Himmler at least still talked socialism later, though what precisely they meant by it is not very clear to me. Hitler’s attitude towards it is illuminated by the famous conversation with Strasser, cited here: https://www.marxists.org/subject/fascism/blick/ch20.htm It seems to me that for him, socialism was largely a self-conscious ruse with some slight disadvantages.

        At any rate, the Nazis are hardly the only people to call themselves socialists while lacking any interest in an identifiably socialist economic program.

  9. Feral Finster

    To understand Trump, one must understand that a vote for Trump is one of the few ways in which the average frustrated American can give the Establishment the Double Bird.

    Or at least lawful (for the time being) ways that the Establishment has to pay attention to.

    This is Trump’s principal value proposition, today, in 2016 and in 2020.

    1. Randall Flagg

      >To understand Trump, one must understand that a vote for Trump is one of the few ways in which the average frustrated American can give the Establishment the Double Bird.

      Could not agree more.
      Speaking of more, some would say Michal Moore created an epic campaign commercial for Trump and the 2016 election in which he said that those voting for Trump were sending the biggest F You in history. It was a sledgehammer in a glass store. The interesting thing is that video is “not available” anymore on You Tube or I would link it here. If you remember it, I ask, has anything changed for those voters that would cause them to not vote for him again? What have Democrats done lately?
      Of course, the PMC class in the media brays, “Well, they elected him and he didn’t do much for them.”, so he was a fail. You could argue then that he is just another politician.
      But all the same, he spoke to them and gave them hope. He doesn’t appear to be a full of shit to them as a Biden does

      1. steppenwolf fetchit

        Some partial versions of it still appear to be available. Here is one.

        I voted for Trump here in Michigan in 2016. I would rather have voted for Sanders but the Democrats deprived me of that choice. So I voted for Trump, partly to get revenge on Hillary for NAFTA and everything else her husband helped bring us, and partly to prevent her from being in a position to work to achieve TPP and TTIP. She pretended to be sort of against them just lately, sort of. But we knew she was lying. We knew what she was. We knew what she stood for.

        And when Trump was announced as winning and then as having won, it did indeed feel good. I felt a sense of joyous rage and happy hatred. We burned the Clinton down.

  10. digi_owl

    And yet the popular notion about US unions online is that they are barely any better than mafia.

      1. Acacia

        The ending of that film is really something.

        Terry Malloy marching back into the warehouse, claiming his ‘right’ to be exploited… ?

  11. Tom Stone

    My experience with unions comes from a childhood friend who became a shop steward with the Ironworkers, my Mother who was twice President of CALMT and my uncle Pete who was President of the ILWU in Stockton ( A major west coast port) for many years.
    Many unions have been co opted and corrupted over the years, but over all they have been a source of good and I will despise scabs as long as I live.
    Maybe longer.

    1. Tim

      With ya Tom,
      My ol man was a shop steward and local union rep. Took me on a trip to DC when I was a young teenager for an AFL-CIO convention.
      Lotsa guys visiting their US representative, making their presence felt. Walking the halls and pressing the flesh. A reminder perhaps or a show of force. Sadly, that trip was just before Reagan’s election. Before the air traffic controllers strike. Then the turn of public opinion against Unions en mass. The ‘unions had their place at one time but they’re no longer needed’ type statements coming from all quarters. Especially in-laws…
      A few years ago I remarked to my wife ‘ya know, the best jobs for pay and benefits were when we were in a Union…’
      She agreed even though she was raised in an anti union household (white collared, conservative, rugged individualism, etc..)
      Teamsters, UFCW, IATSE all helped me put food on the table thru the decades. I despise the free riders in ‘right to work states that crap on unions while getting the pay and bennies. Libertarians, PMC and Hollywood helped bury solidarity in this country.

      1. ashley

        i was with UFCW as a teenager back in the aughts working as a part time cashier in a grocery store. they absolutely screwed us part timers over. we paid dues but got absolutely nothing in return for it. no raises (paid minimum wage), no healthcare, no paid time off, no job protections. it was just another tax on my already paltry paycheck of net $120 a week at most.

        im pro union in theory, but UFCW was corrupt and utterly useless as can be.

  12. Tom Stone

    I wonder if Trump will promise to pay that $600 that Genocide Joe stiffed me and millions of others out of.
    It would make a great talking point…and cause a number of heads to explode.

    1. griffen

      Let’s see US $600 circa 2020 would now be, let’s round higher, perhaps as much as $720 ? I am being kind here and sticking to a more or less 20% increase.

      Not sarcasm. That’s Joe Biden’s economic results, for all to see. Consumer prices and consumer inflation are putting a huge toll on many Americans, and we should be enthused by reports of lower inflation in recent months? Stock markets are higher and that does help those (like myself, been planning a long time) in older age brackets and retirees with pensions, of course, but it don’t do much for the Gen Z or millenials.

  13. Jason Boxman

    So HP is the jettisoned part of HP that split into HP and HP Enterprise under Whitman’s failed leadership. Fun times. This is the kind of game Kellogg’s recently played with trying to split out high growth and low growth parts of the company to try to goose returns in at least one part of the company. Gotta grow that stock value! My favorite is still IBM, which spun off its low growth services business, and dumped most of the debt from the Red Hat acquisition onto this company that enjoys absolutely no benefits from that acquisition, Red Hat itself being squarely part of IBM in Cloud & Cognitive division. That spin-off promptly lost 20% of its value.

    The games we play.

  14. Jason Boxman

    Europe Faces a Measles Outbreak

    Measles, a disease preventable by vaccination, is resurgent in parts of Europe, including Britain. Small outbreaks have also popped up in multiple parts of the United States.

    Given public health sponsored decline in public trust in all vaccines by mandating the COVID shots, along with immune disregulation from SARS2 infections, this is hardly surprising.

  15. Sub-Boreal

    While cleaning up my desk, I ran across a paper copy of a 2022 article which looks at the social feedbacks from climate change, and argues that these may make it less less likely that action will be taken. It’s open-access, and only 5 pages long.

    Re-reading it now, what strikes me most is that this academic has discovered something which should already be self-evident to the NC readership; in fact, the jist of the paper has probably appeared (albeit in fragments) in comments and postings here already! You can decide for yourselves.


    Non-technical summary.
    A widely held belief is that once the impacts of warming are experienced more directly and substantially, especially by affluent populations, the necessary support for a politics prioritising ambitious emissions reductions will follow. But consideration of the indirect socioeconomic impacts of warming suggests this could be false hope.

    Technical summary.
    There is some evidence to support the common intuition that, as the direct impacts of warming intensify – particularly in the affluent Global North – a politics ambitious enough to confront the climate emergency may finally find support. However, it seems at least equally likely that the opposite trend will prevail. This proposition can be understood by considering various indirect impacts of warming, including the widening of socioeconomic inequalities (within and between countries), increases in migration (intra- and inter-nationally) and heightened risk of conflict (from violence and war through to hate speech and crime). Compiling these impacts reveals a considerable and highly inconvenient overlap with key drivers of the authoritarian populism that has proliferated in the 21st century. It highlights the risk of a socio-ecological feedback loop where the consequences of warming create a political environment entirely at odds with that required to reduce emissions. Such a future is, of course, far from inevitable. Nonetheless, the risks highlight the urgent need to find public support for combined solutions to climate change and inequality, which go well beyond the status-quo. This is necessary not only for reasons of economic and climate justice, but in order to mitigate political barriers to carbon mitigation itself.

    Social media summary.
    As the impacts of warming are experienced more directly and substantially, we may vote for precisely the wrong people.

    1. Bazarov

      “It highlights the risk of a socio-ecological feedback loop where the consequences of warming create a political environment entirely at odds with that required to reduce emissions.”

      I’m afraid I disagree. The negative “socio-ecological” feedback loop described in the paper will do untold damage to the globalized system that undergirds modernity. In other words, the world economy will shrink because it will be substantially destroyed along with billions of human beings. This will in turn reduce emissions.

      Indeed, a “requirement” of reduced emissions is an end to economic growth and significant degrowth in the rich, industrialized nations of the first world and a halt or at least a pronounced slowing of growth in leading developing economies like China. Anything like that occurring in an organized way is, I agree, a fantasy, but it does not mean contraction won’t therefore result. Quite the contrary, objective conditions will impose it with tremendous agony.

  16. Kelline

    If only Kamala Harris were, like, eighteen years old. Chronologically, I mean.

    She was graduating high school in Montreal when 18. Yup, our first East Asian, Black, Indian vice president, is actually a Canadian culturally, third grade to high school graduation. She went on to bigger things, like servicing the married Speaker of the California state assembly, the loathsome and corrupt, FBI investigated, Willie Brown who gave her several state commission appointments, and a brand new BMW.
    Then she ran for district attorney in the corrupt San Francisco, gave get out of jail cards to ‘immigrant youth’, now Fentanyl kingpins in California and became a mediocre attorney general.

    Hiden Barris 2024!

  17. Ghost in the Machine

    Endonuclease fingerprint indicates a synthetic origin of SARS-CoV-2

    “To prevent future pandemics, it is important that we understand whether SARS-CoV-2 spilled over directly from animals to people, or indirectly in a laboratory accident. The genome of SARS-COV-2 contains a peculiar pattern of unique restriction endonuclease recognition sites allowing efficient dis- and re-assembly of the viral genome characteristic of synthetic viruses. Here, we report the likelihood of observing such a pattern in coronaviruses with no history of bioengineering. We find that SARS-CoV-2 is an anomaly, more likely a product of synthetic genome assembly than natural evolution. The restriction map of SARS-CoV-2 is consistent with many previously reported synthetic coronavirus genomes, meets all the criteria required for an efficient reverse genetic system, differs from closest relatives by a significantly higher rate of synonymous mutations in these synthetic-looking recognitions sites, and has a synthetic fingerprint unlikely to have evolved from its close relatives. We report a high likelihood that SARS-CoV-2 may have originated as an infectious clone assembled in vitro.“


    1. OnceWere

      It occurs to me that if you investigate the digestion profile of a virus using multiple different restriction enzymes and combinations thereof, then you’re stacking the deck in favour of finding the anomaly that you’re looking for. Deal enough hands and a straight flush becomes a near certainty. At the very least, I’d like to see this methodology run against the genomes of the entire family of coronaviruses in order to show that you never find a statistically anomalous digestion profile even if you throw every enzyme in the freezer at the problem as they seem to have done in this paper.

  18. The Rev Kev

    “Boeing, not Spirit, mis-installed piece that blew off Alaska MAX 9 jet, industry source says”

    Well I guess that they can stop looking for those missing bolts now. They were never installed in the first place. And this was all on Boeing itself. If I ever had to fly again, I do not think that I would ever want to board any modern Boeing builds. A Boeing 747 I would. Otherwise no.

  19. Sub-Boreal

    This just in — coming to a film festival near you: Dr. Bonnie Henry documentary!

    The film “bears witness to the challenges of top-level decision-making arising from the COVID-19 pandemic. Dr. Bonnie Henry was thrust into the global spotlight when she was deemed by The New York Times as ‘one of the most effective public health officials in the world,’” said the news release announcing the premiere.

    Unfairly, Dr. Bonnie Henry has monopolized public attention as the go-to ghoul in the British Columbia public health establishment.

    It’s time for lesser ghouls to get their moment in the sun.

    I give you Dr. Jennifer Grant of the BC CDC: on the harms caused by closing schools during polio and ebola outbreaks.

  20. DG2

    Re: polyamory – “ And if know my PMC, it’s the scheduling that really floats their boats….”

    Never ever change Lambert!

    1. ChrisPacific

      The trend has all kinds of implications, often amusing ones if you’re not in the line of fire.

      For example, if you think three-way relationships are exciting, try three-way divorces and property settlements. The Supreme Court here was asked to rule on one of those recently, most notably whether it should be considered a single relationship (as common sense would suggest) or a collection of three two-way relationships (as existing law based on the assumption of binary relationships appeared to require).

      Set aside plenty of money for legal fees if you feel like experimenting, and don’t expect much in the way of sensible guidance or precedent from case law.

      1. ashley

        how is a three way divorce even possible if you cant have legal polygamy in the first place? three people cant marry each other….

  21. Another Scott

    Did I see one of the articles imply that Haley is a moderate? I guess political writers think that bombing every country on earth, raising the retirement age, and giving even more subsidies to Boeing are centrist, mainstream positions. Give me a brake, she’s the worst of the Republicans by far. She reminds me of George W. Bush without the intellectual heft.

  22. ChrisFromGA

    Atlanta office vacancy hits 32% in Q4.

    (Sung to the tune of, Celebration by Kool & the Gang)

    Whoo-hoo! This is your liquidation 2x

    Liquidate that space, come on! (let’s liquidate)
    Liquidate that space, come on! (let’s liquidate)

    There’s transformation goin’ on right here
    An empty building that’s been quite dead for years
    So bring your checkbook, and some pennies, too
    We gonna liquidate that office for you

    Come on now, liquidation
    Let’s all liquidate, this mortgage is a crime
    Liquidation … we gonna torch the banks and have a good time

    It’s time to pay the piper
    You’d best ignore that Dimon viper
    Every tenant around the world, come on!

    Woohoo! (It’s a liquidation)
    Woohoo! (It’s a liquidation)

    Liquidate that space, come on! (CRE cremation)
    Liquidate that space, come on! (CRE cremation)

    We’re gonna call the movers, tonight
    Let’s liquidate, it’s alright
    We’re gonna call the movers, tonight
    Let’s liquidate, it’s alright
    We’re gonna sell for pennies oh so slight
    Let’s liquidate, it’s just right

    Liquidate that space, come on!
    Liquidate that space, come on!

  23. marym

    Updated NH primary vote counts from NH Secretary of State. I don’t know if these are final. This is as of about 10:00 pm Eastern.

    The first Summary by County spreadsheet under President of the US looks like may be for 21 candidates who were on the ballot. Marianne Williams has 4,938 votes. Vermin Supreme has 905.

    The second Summary by County spreadsheet under President of the US Write-Ins has 77,061 votes for Biden, and votes for several others, including some Republicans, RFKJ, Sanders, and Ceasefire (1,497).


  24. Ben Joseph

    Re:Fauci and wired article

    6 feet was not established dogma. It wouldn’t have taken forensic history dissertation project to uncover the origin if it were.

    The government had the number (micron radius more precisely than 6 feet) so the CDC adopted it. Never heard in medical training. Did hear measles might have been like TB and needed negative air flow rooms, but would love to hear if any of the other doctors had heard about 6 feet. I’m with Fauci on that point, that it seemed made-up.

  25. VietnamVet

    The Seattle Times quotes the following whistleblower comments on the Max 9 Alaska jet. It is damning:

    Apparently, the 737 Max fuselages shipped by the Spirit subcontractor to the Renton WA assembly facility have so many mistakes that there is a group of workers there who do “warranty” work on the assembly line to fix them. The right mid-fuselage plug nuts of the Alaska jet were tightened and reported. But the left plug was found to have a bad seal. The bolts were removed and plug lifted and the seal replaced by the warranty workers. But there are no reports of reinstalling and tightening of the bolts or the final safety sign-off of the job. Obviously, since the plug blew out at 16,000 feet, no bolts have been found, and no reported bolt hole damage; the bolts were left off when the plug was lowered back down into the brackets. Shifting of the plug could have been the cause of cabin pressure warnings in the earlier flights.

    There will be lots of huff and puff and chauffeur driving between the Capitol and the new corporate headquarters just south of the Pentagon but Boeing will not build safe airliners (and design and build a new generation jet) unless the company is re-regulated again for the greater good, the C-suite cleaned out, and management bonuses and stock buy-back ended.

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