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

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Linkee-poo Wednesday Feb 24

Lawrence Ferlinghetti, and so it goes.

"Octavia Butler's alternate realities and 'speculative fiction' reveal striking, and often devastating parallels to the world we live in today. She was a deep observer of the human condition, perplexed and inspired by our propensity towards self-destruction. Butler was also fascinated by the cyclical nature of history, and often looked to the past when writing about the future. Along with her warnings is her message of hope — a hope conjured by centuries of survival and persistence. For every society that perished in her books, came a story of rebuilding, of repair." The Throughline podcast on Octavia Butler.

"When researchers began to excavate a tunnellike cave on the west coast of Alaska in 1998, they were hoping to discover the remains of ancient bears. Instead, they unearthed something even more intriguing: a tiny chip of bone belonging to the first known dog in the Americas. The find supports the idea that dogs accompanied the first humans who set foot on these continents—and that both traveled there along the Pacific coast."

"A sheep named Baarack received a much needed shearing after rescuers in Australia found the abandoned animal with more than 75 pounds of wool weighing it down." Noted for the "what have we done to animals" aspect of the story.

"In an analysis released Wednesday, the US Food and Drug Administration said the Johnson & Johnson Covid-19 vaccine has met the requirements for emergency use authorization… The efficacy of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine against moderate to severe/critical Covid-19 across all geographic areas was 66.9% at least 14 days after the single dose vaccination and 66.1% at least 28 days after vaccination, a new analysis meant to brief the FDA's Vaccines and Related Biological Products Advisory Committee said."

"A coronavirus variant that emerged in mid-2020 and surged to become the dominant strain in California not only spreads more readily than its predecessors, it also evades antibodies generated by COVID-19 vaccines or prior infection and it’s associated with severe illness and death, researchers said." USA leading the way with dangerous SARS-CoV2 variants.

"Patients who have recently taken the Covid-19 vaccine are advised to reschedule their yearly mammogram screenings as the presence of swollen lymph nodes, which is one of the known side effects of the jab, could be mistakenly identified as a sign of breast cancer."

"As Australia entered the third day of its vaccination drive its health minister told local media on Wednesday that two people had received incorrect coronavirus vaccine doses… The two patients, aged 88 and 94, were given four times the recommended dose of the Pfizer vaccine." Oopsie.

"Some residents of Marin County are misusing access codes intended for people living in Black and Latino communities to book vaccine appointments at the Oakland Coliseum through the state's vaccine scheduling system My Turn, SFGATE has learned."

"A national health care provider has administered COVID-19 vaccinations to people deemed ineligible for the scarce vaccine by local health departments, including people with connections to company leaders and customers of its concierge medical service, according to internal communications leaked to NPR." Best healthcare in the world, as long as you're rich.

Farmers are the stewards of the land… really? "Farming has destroyed a lot of the rich soil of America's Midwestern prairie. A team of scientists just came up with a staggering new estimate for just how much has disappeared… The most fertile topsoil is entirely gone from a third of all the land devoted to growing crops across the upper Midwest, the scientists say. Some of their colleagues, however, remain skeptical about the methods that produced this result." Farmers mostly pillage the lands, increasingly salting it and rendering it unusable except for applying huge amounts of chemicals and fertilizers. You might remember that the Dust Bowl was created by unsustainable farming practices.

"Five members of the board of directors at the entity that operates Texas' electrical grid will resign from their posts Wednesday, according to a notice posted to the Public Utility Commission website… None of the five members resigning from their posts live in Texas."

"Tiger Woods escaped a Tuesday morning car accident with his life, but suffered 'significant' leg injuries that required extensive surgery and a rod being inserted into his lower right leg… Woods suffered 'comminuted open fractures affecting both the upper and lower tibia and fibula' said Dr. Anish Mahajan, interim CEO and chief medical officer of Harbor-UCLA Hospital, where Woods was taken to the trauma center and treated."

"Warner, who was 63 when he died, was not among the angry QAnon followers who came to believe the unlikely theory that Donald Trump would hold onto power and defeat a satanic cabal. He was a computer specialist with a deep distrust of government, according to his own writings and to those who knew him. A loner, he had made at least one female friend feel manipulated and frightened. And he had cultivated a bizarre obsession with shape-shifting alien lizards and a dense thicket of other peculiar ideas… As Warner’s best friend in his final months, Deck believes that some combination of a fatal cancer diagnosis salted with a belief in conspiracy theories led Warner to kill himself in such a brutally spectacular manner." By blowing up his RV in downtown Nashville.

"A court in Germany has found a former Syrian regime official guilty of being an accomplice to crimes against humanity, in a historic first victory for efforts worldwide to bring legal accountability for atrocities committed in Syria’s long war… Eyad al-Gharib, a 44-year-old former colonel in the Syrian intelligence service, carried out orders in one of Bashar al-Assad’s notorious prisons."

Why did the Trump administration and Mitch McConnell work so hard in appointing judges (while ignoring most everything else)? "A federal judge late Tuesday indefinitely banned President Joe Biden's administration from enforcing a 100-day moratorium on most deportations… U.S. District Judge Drew Tipton issued a preliminary injunction sought by Texas, which argued the moratorium violated federal law and risked imposing additional costs on the state."

And… "Judges with backgrounds as prosecutors or corporate lawyers, who represent the majority of federal district court jurists, are significantly more likely to rule in favor of employers in workplace disputes, according to a new study of diversity on the bench."

"The supply chain failures are two examples of why the Biden administration wants to jump-start production of critical materials that go into cell phones, computers, cars, medicine and other sectors… The sectors are part of a sweeping review of critical supply chains that will kick off on Wednesday when President Biden is expected to sign an executive order and meet with a bipartisan group of lawmakers who have worked on the issue." Waits for the GOP to start wailing about "controlled economies" and that we should let business run business how they see fit which will help :: checks notes :: China. Just wait until they find out about global supply of some rare earth metals, like lithium.

"Administration officials said Biden’s executive order, to be signed at 4:45 p.m. EST Wednesday, will launch an immediate 100-day review of supply chains for four critical products: semiconductor chips, large-capacity batteries for electric vehicles, rare earth minerals and pharmaceuticals." Boom, there it is.

"The House of Representatives is set to vote Wednesday on the Equality Act, a bill that would ban discrimination against people based on sexual orientation and gender identity. It would also substantially expand the areas to which those discrimination protections apply… It's a bill that President Biden said on the campaign trail would be one of his top legislative priorities for the first 100 days of his presidency."

"A coalition of evangelical Christian leaders is condemning the role of "radicalized Christian nationalism" in feeding the political extremism that led to the violent insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 by supporters of former President Donald Trump… In an open letter, more than 100 pastors, ministry and seminary leaders, and other prominent evangelicals express concern about the growing 'radicalization' they're seeing, particularly among white evangelicals." I think they've missed how the history of evangelicalism in America has been tied tightly with Christian Nationalism and white supremacy.

"Secretary of State Antony Blinken recommitted the U.S. to rejoining the United Nations Human Rights Council on Wednesday, three years after former President Donald Trump withdrew over what his administration called bias against Israel."

"DeSantis’s popularity among Republicans has been steadily rising in the state and nationwide amid his handling of Covid, and now a new survey from top GOP pollster Tony Fabrizio gives a clearer picture of just how much the Florida GOP likes what he’s doing… In a hypothetical three-way primary for president, DeSantis gets 64 percent support compared to 12 percent for Rubio and 10 percent for Scott, according to Fabrizio’s survey, which was conducted last week for a private client and shared with POLITICO." DeSantis. Popular. For his handling of COVID in Florida. JFC.

No comments: