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

Monday, July 26, 2021

Linkee-poo Monday July 26

Just a heads up, expect outages in the coming days.

"Tens of thousands of people were evacuated from their homes in Shanghai early Sunday after Typhoon In-fa barreled into China's east coast… Days after unprecedented flooding devastated huge parts of the country's center, forcing more than 1 million people from their homes, around 330,000 residents were evacuated from Shanghai's Fengxian District, the state-run newspaper China Daily reported."

"This week, Burton takes his temporary place on the twinkling azure set ruled for 37 seasons by the beloved Alex Trebek. Or, some would say, his rightful place. No other potential replacement for Trebek, who died of pancreatic cancer in the objectively terrible year of 2020, has excited the popular imagination as much as Burton."

"These fascinating and beautiful creatures are disappearing, ant by ant, bee by bee, day by day. Estimates vary and are imprecise, but it seems likely that insects have declined in abundance by 75% or more since I was five years old. The scientific evidence for this grows stronger every year, as studies are published describing the collapse of monarch butterfly populations in North America, the demise of woodland and grassland insects in Germany, or the seemingly inexorable contraction of the ranges of bumblebees and hoverflies in the UK." Yet, oddly, there are still enough mosquitoes to piss me off.

"More than 200 of the world's leading climate scientists will begin meeting today to finalize a landmark report summarizing how Earth's climate has already changed, and what humans can expect for the rest of the century."

"Although reports of breakthrough COVID-19 cases occurring among fully vaccinated Americans are garnering much attention, as the country experiences a viral resurgence, new data illustrates just how rare these breakthrough infections are likely to be, and further shows that the vast majority of those becoming severely ill are the unvaccinated."

"Of parents with unvaccinated children, 3 in 4 say the recommendation of their child's health care provider will be integral in their decision to vaccinate. However, 70% of parents with children ages 3 to 11 and 50% of parents with children ages 12 to 18 have not discussed the Covid-19 vaccine with their pediatrician, according to a new report."

"As the number of Covid-19 cases surges in the United States, more than 50 health care groups -- including the American Medical Association, the American College of Physicians, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Public Health Association -- issued a joint statement calling for all health care and long-term care employers to mandate employees be vaccinated against Covid-19."

"Alzheimer's researchers sharing findings on COVID-19… Now, researchers at UT Health San Antonio are studying patients like Hernandez, trying to understand why their cognitive problems persist, and whether their brains have been changed in ways that elevate the risk of developing Alzheimer's."

"France's parliament approved a law early Monday requiring special virus passes for all restaurants and domestic travel and mandating vaccinations for all health workers… Both measures have prompted protests and political tensions."

"Dr. Scott Gottlieb, former Food and Drug Administration commissioner, said Sunday he thinks the U.S. is further into the COVID-19 epidemic driven by the Delta variant than Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) models are picking up. He said that could mean 'hopefully we're going to turn a corner' in the next two to three weeks." Is that the same corner we've been waiting to turn for the last 18 months?

"A WPLN News investigation finds the Tennova Lebanon hospital sued more than 1,000 patients including Hope Cantwell over the past two years across multiple counties after striking a deal to be sold. And hundreds of those suits were filed during the pandemic, at a time when many companies have been backing away from taking patients to court over unpaid medical debt. The state of New York even banned the practice."

"A liquor shortage that is affecting the country is being felt here in Northeast Ohio… Eric McIntyre, owner of B2’s Bourbon & BBQ in Richmond Heights, said some liquor brands have been out of stock for so long that customers are trying to bring in their own favorite bottles." Starts flipping tables.

"The increase in murder appears to be a uniquely American phenomenon. While murder rates rose in some developed countries last year, like Canada and Germany, the increases are far below the double-digit spikes America is seeing. That’s especially notable because the United States already had a higher baseline of murders, after controlling for population. Despite claims that Democratic mayors or progressive criminal justice policies are driving the increase, it also appears indifferent to the political party in charge: As Asher and criminal justice expert John Pfaff have shown, murder rates increased in cities run by Democrats and Republicans, progressive and not."

"Tobacco group Philip Morris International has reportedly said it plans to stop selling cigarettes in the U.K. in 10 years’ time… It could bring an end to the cigarette maker’s flagship Marlboro brand and comes two years after the U.K. government said it wanted to end smoking in England by 2030."

"The US has been told to stop 'demonising' China, in their most high-level talks under President Biden… China's Vice Foreign Minister Xie Feng said relations had reached a 'stalemate' because the US saw China as an 'imagined enemy'."

"Foreign journalists reporting on the aftermath of China’s flooding disaster have faced hostile confrontations in the street and been subjected to 'vicious campaigns', amid increasing nationalistic sensitivity to any negative portrayals of China."

"The Taliban say they don’t want to monopolize power, but they insist there won’t be peace in Afghanistan until there is a new negotiated government in Kabul and President Ashraf Ghani is removed." Because, you know, you can trust the Taliban at their word.

"At least seven people have been killed in a 20-vehicle pileup during a sandstorm in Utah, the highway patrol said."

The pendulum swings again… "That’s what a growing number of lawmakers, investors and even some Fed officials themselves are demanding to know. They are warning that the central bank’s vast purchases of government bonds and mortgage-backed securities are feeding financial bubbles in the housing, stock and even cryptocurrency markets, and stoking higher consumer prices, with little apparent benefit to ordinary Americans."

"Private firms, straddling traditional marketing and the shadow world of geopolitical influence operations, are selling services once conducted principally by intelligence agencies… They sow discord, meddle in elections, seed false narratives and push viral conspiracies, mostly on social media. And they offer clients something precious: deniability." Buying "influencers" to push disinformation. (Grokked from Erick VanNewkirk)

"After Georgia Republicans passed a restrictive voting law in March, Democrats here began doing the math… The state’s new voter I.D. requirement for mail-in ballots could affect the more than 270,000 Georgians lacking identification. The provision cutting the number of ballot drop boxes could affect hundreds of thousands of voters who cast absentee ballots that way in 2020 — and that’s just in the populous Atlanta suburbs alone."

"House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has appointed Rep. Adam Kinzinger of Illinois, one of the rare vocal critics inside the Republican Party of former President Donald Trump, to serve on the special committee charged with investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol."

"The push to seek punishment rose to a new level on Sunday, after Pelosi announced that Kinzinger had accepted her invitation to join the committee. Initially, most rank-and-file Republicans were content to let Cheney serve without much of a fight, but Kinzinger's addition has changed the conversation and has put a new level of pressure on McCarthy."

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