And they come with no warning,
nature loves her little surprises.
Continual crisis!

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Linkee-poo, when her number-one son goes bad playing cards with the Devil's Hand

Still alligators as far as the eye can see.

"Wuhan, a Chinese city of eleven million people, has temporarily shut down its public transport as it tries to halt the outbreak of a new strain of virus… Those living in the city have been advised not to leave, in a week when millions of Chinese are travelling for the upcoming Lunar New Year holiday." Is it time to panic now?

"'Partway through its last set of activities, Curiosity lost its orientation,' wrote Curiosity team member Dawn Sumner, a planetary geologist at University of California, Davis, in a mission update this week." Yeah, I've been to parties like that.

The Throughline podcast accepting our new robot overlords. "Artificial intelligence, gene modification, and self-driving cars are causing fear and uncertainty about how technology is changing our lives. But humans have struggled to accept innovations throughout history. In this episode, we explore three innovations that transformed the world and show how people have adapted — and ask whether we can do the same today." On coffee, (gasoline driven) tractors, and the telephone and how these innovations changed our lives, our governments, our societies.

"Robot tanks: On patrol but not allowed to shoot." Skynet on a beta test.

"President Donald Trump will attend Friday's March for Life, an annual anti-abortion event in Washington, he announced on Twitter… Trump will be the first president to attend the march, according to Jeanne Mancini, president of March for Life. Trump was also the first president to speak at the march via video feed when he addressed participants in the 2018 march."

Also, the Throughline podcast on the rise of the banana. "The banana is a staple of the American diet and has been for generations. But how did this exotic tropical fruit become so commonplace? How one Brooklyn-born entrepreneur ruthlessly created the modern banana industry and the infamous banana republics." You wouldn't think bananas have a trouble, and you'd be wrong. Think "blood bananas" and all the ravages of colonialism. Yes, I've been working through my podcast backlog.

"Speaking at a press briefing at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Mnuchin was asked whether the world’s largest economy needed to completely and immediately divest from fossil fuels… 'Is she the chief economist or who is she? I’m confused,' Mnuchin said, before adding this was 'a joke. That was funny.'" Conservative humor eludes me. Also, our treasury secretary is a little man with little man complex.

"As the impeachment trial gets into stride in Washington against Donald Trump, the president on Wednesday announced a plethora of new plans, policies and programs as he prepared to make his way back to the US from the World Economic Forum in Switzerland." Because it never was about "making the process better."

And what about those "fine people on both sides"? "From the bail hearings of three men arrested on gun charges, whom police claim were members of the white nationalist group The Base: the men planned on using the gun rally in Virginia to start a civil war by gunning down their fellow pro-gun demonstrators, and they discussed murdering police officers in order to obtain arms and tactical equipment." They believed themselves to be more "militant" than al Qaeda (which translates to English as "the Base"). Dudes, you wouldn't even survive the al Qaeda onboarding process.

"The Virginia state Senate voted Wednesday to advance a "red flag law" bill, one of many gun safety measures Democrats are looking to move through the state Legislature after taking control of both chambers."

"Trump boasts the US economy is the best it's ever been under his watch. Here are 9 charts showing how it compares to the Obama and Bush presidencies." The president lies the way fish swim.

"By the time Rep. Jerry Nadler, a New York Democrat and another House impeachment manager, began talking around 4 p.m. ET, that number had grown to about two dozen, as senators rolled back into the chamber from a break… While the Senate won't determine a verdict for over a week, it's clear that a number of senators are not only tired, but have already made up their minds, raising further the expectation that it will vote to acquit." Um, aren't they supposed to attend the entire time?

"Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., may have successfully corralled his Republican colleagues Tuesday to defeat 11 efforts by Senate Democrats to subpoena key Trump administration witnesses and documents (and modify other rules) in the Senate impeachment trial. But these tactics have likely put Republican senators facing competitive races in an impossible bind; two January polls show that, in both battleground states and swing counties, more voters support Trump’s removal than approve of him."

"White House lawyers distorted the facts on the impeachment process and other issues during the Jan. 21 Senate trial…" that's a funny way to spell "lie".

"Senate Republicans need to end this impeachment trial before President Donald Trump confesses to anything else… 'We're doing very well,' Trump said, summing up the performance of his legal team after watching the trial from Davos, Switzerland. 'But honestly, we have all the material. They don't have the material.'" Our stable genius president, everybody.

"Sen. Susan Collins sent a written note early Wednesday morning during President Donald Trump's impeachment trial minutes before Chief Justice John Roberts admonished both legal teams, a source with knowledge of the event tells CNN." Someone's tattling.

"Warren’s plan details how she would clean out what she called 'the corruption that has infected the government' by asking all political appointees to resign and by directing the Justice Department to appoint an independent task force to investigate corruption that took place during the Trump administration. She warned that President Trump was unlikely to make the transition to a Democratic administration smooth, saying 'his vindictive actions as president suggest that he is likely to do everything he can to undermine the next president.'" (Grokked from Laura J Mixon)

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