There's battle lines being drawn.
Nobody's right if everybody's wrong.
Young people speaking their minds
getting so much resistance from behind

Wednesday, May 24, 2023

Linkee-poo, what's love got to do with it

Tina Turner, and so it goes.

"Once we became aware that data from AO3 was being included in the Common Crawl dataset — which is used to train AI such as ChatGPT — we put code in place in December 2022 requesting Common Crawl not scrape the Archive again."

"Orcas have attacked and sunk a third boat off the Iberian coast of Europe, and experts now believe the behavior is being copied by the rest of the population."

"A deep sea-mapping company has created the first-ever full-sized digital scan of the Titanic, revealing an entirely new view of the world's most famous shipwreck."

"But the rupture in Satartia underscores growing concerns across communities that face the prospect of more CO2 pipelines being built to address climate change. Safety advocates and community residents worry about pipeline safety and gaps in federal regulation, says Bill Caram, executive director of the nonprofit Pipeline Safety Trust. 'We're looking at those pipelines being a lot closer to people and communities than they are right now,' Caram says. 'We are not yet ready.'"

"Human activities have caused more than half of the world's largest lakes to shrink dramatically over the last 30 years, according to a new study published in the journal Science. The implications pose risks to human health, economies and the natural world."

"The idea that profits drove our current bout of inflation surfaced in the last few years among progressive economists and lawmakers but was waved away by more mainstream types as a 'conspiracy theory.' That changed earlier this year." I mean, corporate America only told us this with every quarterly earning report since 2020.

On the enshitification of the internet economy (also known as Web 2.0). "On (On the Media), we’ve spent many hours dissecting the digital anatomy of the internet. We’ve chronicled concerns about privacy, the appeal of connection, the rapture of echo chambers, and the ever-bumbling attempts to regulate it all. But now we turn to the increasingly potent feeling that, when it comes to the world wide web, everything kinda seems to be getting worse… This week, Brooke sits down for the first of three conversations with with Cory Doctorow, journalist, activist, author of the new novel Red Team Blues, and special advisor to the Electronic Frontier Foundation, to discuss his theory on why going online might feel less and more repellent, how that happened, and what we can do about it." Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3 which explores some solutions.

"Amanda Gorman's poetry has heralded a presidential inauguration and a U.N. General Assembly — but access to it is now restricted at a Miami-Dade County school, the latest casualty in the fight over library books."

"Target once distinguished itself as being boldly supportive of the LGBTQ+ community… Now that status is tarnished after it removed some LGBTQ+-themed products and relocated Pride Month displays to the back of stores in certain Southern locations in response to online complaints and in-store confrontations that it says threatened employees’ well-being."

"More than 450 Catholic clergy in Illinois sexually abused nearly 2,000 children since 1950, the state’s attorney general found in an investigation released Tuesday, revealing that the problem was far worse than the church had let on." I know, I'm shocked as well. I didn't know the Catholic Church hosted that many drag shows.

"Owners of the Keystone pipeline knew a defect had formed years before the strain finally caused the pipeline to burst and flood a Kansas creek with oil last year… The Keystone pipeline, owned by TC Energy, burst near the Kansas-Nebraska border late last year, spilling almost 13,000 barrels of oil onto adjacent farmland and into Mill Creek." It's almost like they put profits in front of safety and the environment.

"A man in Kentucky’s largest city is facing criminal charges after allegedly shooting his roommate during a dispute over a Hot Pocket, authorities say." Ahh, that polite society the NRA talks about.

"The issue of gun control came to a head in Maryland after a man began regularly standing at a school bus stop with an AR-15-style rifle in his hands… For the past few weeks, J'Den McAdory, 20, has been strolling around his neighborhood in Severn, Md., with a long gun in what he says is a protest against recent state gun control legislation."

"In the wake of the 2018 passage of the internet child protection bill FOSTA-SESTA in the US, fandom’s proudly sex-positive culture has increasingly become sanitized, homogenized, and erased — which has allowed the puritanical voices of these “anti-fans” to take their place… This trend would be bad news in any online community, but it’s been especially heady and unwieldy in fandom, an entire culture built around feeling things strongly, not rationally. The result is one of the unlikeliest fronts of the culture war: an internet community, once the bastion of delightful deviance and subversion, being completely overtaken by a new form of purity culture often spearheaded by people who would otherwise describe themselves as politically liberal." (Grokked form Jason Sanford, I think)

"For more than three hours, investigators presented findings alleging Paxton sought to hide an affair, misused his office to help a donor, skirted protocols “grossly outside” norms and built a culture of fear and retaliation in his office. Investigators told the GOP-led House General Investigating Committee that there was evidence that Paxton repeatedly broke the law over the years, including by misusing official information, abusing his official capacity and retaliation."

"A news story blaming White House immigration policies for causing more than 20 homeless veterans to be booted from their temporary shelters is now being denounced as an elaborate hoax, with the New York lawmaker at the center calling it a heartbreaking affront to his work to help veterans." But, you know, he's not really sad about it because "he is undeterred in his opposition to President Joe Biden’s immigration policies and their potential effects on states like New York. But he conceded that in this case, the concerns were unfounded." (Grokked from Chang)

"Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis launched his 2024 presidential campaign on Wednesday with firm words but a disastrous Twitter announcement that did little to counter criticism that the 44-year-old Republican may not be ready to take on former President Donald Trump."v "A defiant House Speaker Kevin McCarthy said Wednesday the debt ceiling standoff was 'not my fault' as he sent Republican negotiators to the White House to finish out talks, but warned the two sides need more time as they try to reach a budget deal with President Joe Biden." Hey Kevin, you're Speaker of the House. It is your fault, no matter what.

Thursday, May 18, 2023

Linkee-poo late Thursday May 18

"Scaffolding in a niche of the Vatican Museums’ Round Hall conceal from view the work of restorers who are removing centuries of grime from the largest known bronze statue of the ancient world: the gilded Hercules Mastai Righetti."

"In a 7-2 vote on Thursday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled Andy Warhol infringed on photographer Lynn Goldsmith's copyright when he created a series of silk screen images based on a photograph Goldsmith shot of the late musician Prince in 1981."

"The Mastcam-Z instrument aboard NASA’s Perseverance Mars rover recently collected 152 images while looking deep into Belva Crater, a large impact crater within the far larger Jezero Crater. Stitched into a dramatic mosaic, the results are not only eye-catching, but also provide the rover’s science team some deep insights into the interior of Jezero."

"Temperatures are expected to be warmest relative to average in the country’s midsection from June through August with risks for cooler weather on the East and West coasts, according to the latest outlook from The Weather Company, an IBM Business, and Atmospheric G2… But the fly in this forecast ointment may be a cooler start to summer – particularly in the Southwest and possibly into the South."

"A BP subsidiary will pay a $40 million penalty and install technology to control releases of benzene and other contaminants at its Whiting oil refinery on the Indiana shoreline of Lake Michigan, Biden administration officials said Wednesday."

"The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced a nearly $11 billion investment on Tuesday to help bring affordable clean energy to rural communities throughout the country… Rural electric cooperatives, renewable energy companies and electric utilities will be able to apply for funding through two programs, U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said during a media briefing on Monday."

"The Biden administration on Wednesday announced $251 million for carbon capture and storage projects in seven states, aiming to reducing reduce planet-warming pollution from power plants and other industrial facilities."

"But fewer haddock will be caught in New England this year after regulators cut fishing quotas. A recent scientific assessment found that the Gulf of Maine haddock stock declined unexpectedly, and that meant the catch quotas for the fish were unsustainably high, federal fishing managers said."

"Griffiths told me the results were astonishing. Not only did (psilocybin) reduce anxiety and depression in patients, for some of them it unlocked a spiritual experience… Now, Griffiths is looking at all this from the other side. In early 2022, he was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer. Doctors think he only has a few months to live. I had an incredible conversation with this world-renowned scientist and healer about how he is coming to grips with his own mortality, and the mystery of what comes next."

"But many experts say these officers aren't experiencing fentanyl or opioid overdoses… 'This has never happened,' said Dr. Ryan Marino, a toxicologist and emergency room physician who studies addiction at Case Western Reserve University. 'There has never been an overdose through skin contact or accidentally inhaling fentanyl.'" Funny that. It doesn't mean these officers don't need help or are not actually feeling an affect, but it's not fentanyl.

"With new and used cars still painfully expensive, Ryan Holdsworth says he plans to keep his 9-year-old Chevy Cruze for at least four more years. Limiting his car payments and his overall debt is a bigger priority for him than having a new vehicle."

"The next big potential risk to the U.S. economy may be lurking in corporate towers across the country's downtown districts… With many people still working from home, companies are cutting back on so much office space that it threatens to unleash even more headwinds for the U.S. economy." Or, and just hear me out here, we could redevelop that space into affordable apartment complexes. Alternatively, the could lower rents which would draw back actual offices (as compared to cubical farms).

"Retail sales increased 0.4% in April compared with March, when sales decreased 0.7%. That is the first retail sales increase since January, when unusually warm weather and a big jump in Social Security benefits juiced spending."

"More than a year after launching an effort to unionize, dancers at a topless dive bar in Los Angeles are close to becoming the only unionized group of strippers in the U.S.… Lawyers representing the owners of the Star Garden Topless Dive Bar have withdrawn all election challenges and have agreed to recognize the union, organizers said on Tuesday."

"Lawmakers on Capitol Hill are pushing to keep AM radio in the nation’s cars… A bipartisan group in Congress has introduced the “AM for Every Vehicle Act.” The bill calls on the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to require automakers to keep AM radio in new cars at no additional cost." *cough*Salem Media*cough* In case you need reminded, the On the Media Podcast series "The Divided Dial."

"(A) federal investigation found that three Kentucky-based McDonald’s franchises illegally employed at least 305 children, including some as young as 10 years old. The three franchises — Bauer Food LLC, Archways Richwood LLC, and Bell Restaurant Group I LLC — operate 62 stores across Kentucky, Indiana, Maryland, and Ohio."

"Russia’s hypersonic missiles have taken a dual hit this week from Patriots fired by Ukraine and 'patriots' arrested at home… Once touted as unstoppable, the program now faces growing domestic fallout from treason charges against three scientists who worked on the technology, just as Kyiv claims its U.S.-supplied air defense systems have been able to shoot many of the missiles down." Well, someone has to pay for their failure. Although, if I understand it correctly, Russia's hypersonic weapons are ballistic missiles and only achieve their speed very high in the atmosphere (where it's easy), but then look like most other ballistic missiles as they slow down in the thicker air when they get close to their target. Patriot, while not designed as an anti-ballistic system, has shown it can function very well as one.

"The Pentagon has overestimated the value of the weapons it has sent to Ukraine by at least $3 billion — an accounting error that could be a boon for the war effort because it will allow the Defense Department to send more weapons now without asking Congress for more money." Well, isn't that convenient.

"The Ukraine Black Sea grain deal has been extended for two more months, in what U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres hailed as 'good news for the world,' a day before Russia could have quit the pact over obstacles to its grain and fertiliser exports."

"A dozen poor countries are facing economic instability and even collapse under the weight of hundreds of billions of dollars in foreign loans, much of them from the world’s biggest and most unforgiving government lender, China." You say that like that wasn't the actual plan. See, then China will forgive, or refinance, if only those governments would, maybe, give China the property they developed, or favorable trade rights, or ownership of ports… Welcome to Belt and Road.

"An investigation led by Republican Texas attorney general, Ken Paxton, has sent doctors at an Austin hospital into a panic, causing all the physicians in its adolescent medicine department to depart… Earlier this week, Dell Children’s clinic, which provides gender-affirming care for trans children, announced to parents that they would need to find new providers for their children in transition."

More guns make us safer… "Matthew Davis, 32, admonished Angel Gomez, 20, for being disorderly in the parking lot of the Keene, Texas, restaurant at about 9:40 p.m. last Saturday. A physical altercation ensued, then the juvenile suspect, who is unnamed because they are (12), allegedly shot Davis multiple times from the back seat of Gomez's vehicle, the Keene Police Department said… Davis was transported to the hospital, where he died."

You should keep a gun to protect yourself… "A Mexican woman who killed a man defending herself when he attacked and raped her in 2021 was sentenced to more than six years in prison, a decision her legal defense called 'discriminatory' and vowed to appeal Tuesday."

"A Florida teacher is under investigation by the state's Department of Education after she showed her students a Disney movie that features a gay character… Jenna Barbee, who teaches fifth grade in the Hernando County School District, says a student's mother lodged a complaint with education officials after Barbee showed the film Strange World in her classroom."

"Disney on Thursday upped the ante in its battle with Florida’s Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis, and it cost his state 2,000 white-collar jobs… Disney is scrapping plans to build a $1 billion office complex in Florida, citing 'changing business conditions,' according to a memo provided by a Disney spokesperson."

"Two staff members at Rep. Gerry Connolly's district office in Fairfax, Va., were attacked Monday by a person armed with a baseball bat, according to a statement released by the Democratic lawmaker."

"The report Monday from special counsel John Durham represents the long-awaited culmination of an investigation that Trump and allies had claimed would expose massive wrongdoing by law enforcement and intelligence officials. Instead, Durham’s investigation delivered underwhelming results, with prosecutors securing a guilty plea from a little-known FBI employee but losing the only two criminal cases they took to trial."

"Deegan, who will be the city’s first female mayor, is also only the second Democrat elected mayor in Jacksonville in the past three decades. She framed herself as a voice of opposition who will clean up what she asserts is a widely viewed culture of corruption in city government and bring in those who have historically been “left behind” when it comes to economic development. Her priorities are infrastructure, public health and small business."

"Minnesota Democratic Party leaders met in a closed executive session over Zoom on Thursday evening to discuss a rule change that would permanently ban people involved in violence from party activities, just days after chaos broke out during a weekend convention to endorse a candidate for a Minneapolis City Council race."

"A group of longtime Republican operatives is launching a super PAC supporting the expected presidential campaign of former Vice President Mike Pence… The move is the strongest signal yet that Pence is planning to officially challenge former President Donald Trump for the GOP nomination. Pence has been signaling his plan for months with campaign-style trips to early voting states including Iowa and New Hampshire." Or, it's just another grift and/or way to transfer generational wealth without tax liabilities.

"A man who spent a night in jail for smacking Rudy Giuliani on the back and calling him a “scumbag” is suing him and several New York City police officers for false arrest and defamation."

"A woman who says she worked as an off-the-books employee for Rudy Giuliani during his stint as Donald Trump’s personal lawyer alleges in court papers that the former New York City mayor coerced her into sex and owes her nearly $2 million in unpaid wages." And supposedly there are tapes.

"The lawsuit seeks $2.4 million from the fake electors and their attorneys, alleging they were part of a conspiracy by Trump and his allies to overturn his loss in the 2020 presidential race. It also seeks to disqualify the Republicans from ever serving as electors again."

"Computer engineers and tech-inclined political scientists have warned for years that cheap, powerful artificial intelligence tools would soon allow anyone to create fake images, video and audio that was realistic enough to fool voters and perhaps sway an election." But now the technology has matured, and our collective ability to shift through the bullshit has been diminished.

"An independent candidate defeated a longtime Republican office holder to become the first elected Black mayor in Colorado Springs, Colorado’s second largest with a history of being a conservative stronghold."

"The FBI disclosed to the Judiciary Committee on Wednesday that two of the scheduled witnesses — Marcus Allen and Steve Friend — had their security clearances revoked earlier this month, according to a letter from Christopher Dunham, the acting assistant director of the FBI." The hypocrisy of the GOP would be funny if it weren't so deadly.

Sunday, May 14, 2023

Linkee-poo Sunday May 14

"The numbers speak for themselves: More than 100 movies in over 45 years of acting. Now Tom Hanks is drawing on all that experience to craft a story in a very different medium. He used some of the pandemic slowdown to write a novel. Titled The Making of Another Major Motion Picture Masterpiece, it tells the story of a comic strip that becomes a multimillion-dollar superhero movie."

"Beware the Nibblerids, for they shall nibble you to shreds. Their name might make them sound like the antagonists in a children's book, but if you're a microbe, nibblerids can be quite scary. These tiny, single-celled organisms are voracious predators that use a tooth-like structure to rip apart their prey bit by bit. They are also, it turns out, occupants of a completely new branch on the tree of life — a novel lifeform quite different, and distant, from any other known living creatures." Something new has been added. (Grokked from John)

"Hydrologists from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said deep snowpack across much of the West will bring short-term relief, but the equally deep “bathtub rings” at Lake Powell and Lake Mead reservoirs are a reminder of the long road to bringing supply and demand in balance."

"Daily tides stoked with increasingly warmer water ate a hole taller than the Washington Monument at the bottom of one of Greenland’s major glaciers in the last couple years, accelerating the retreat of a crucial part of the glacier, a new study found… And scientists worry that the phenomenon isn’t limited to this one glacier, raising questions about previous projections of melting rates on the world’s vulnerable ice sheets." We're boned.

"Roads in Florida could soon include phosphogypsum — a radioactive waste material from the fertilizer industry — under a bill lawmakers have sent to Gov. Ron DeSantis." Getting rid of our dangerous byproducts in plain site. I'm not worried about radium, with it being in the open that should quickly dissipate. But I do believe that this is not the solution to the toxic waste in Florida.

"A federal appeals court ruled Tuesday that the Environmental Protection Agency must regulate perchlorate, reversing a Trump-era rollback on a drinking water contaminant linked to brain damage in infants."

"Breast cancer is very treatable when caught early, and mammograms, which are X-ray images of breasts, are a reliable screening test to detect it. Now, new draft recommendations released Tuesday from the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force urges all women to get screened every other year, starting at age 40." Remember when they said you could start later…

"As the Biden administration ends the COVID-19 public health emergency, millions of Americans who contracted the disease continue to suffer from symptoms associated with long COVID… Neuropsychologist James C. Jackson says people with long COVID can suffer from symptoms like exhaustion, shortness of breath and disturbed sleep. Some of the most troubling symptoms are neurological: struggling to remember things, to focus, even to perform basic daily tasks and solve problems." You might remember when COVID-19 started I said because this was a novel virus it will change us by the end of it. This is part of what I was talking about.

"We are witnessing a technological revolution unfolding in real time. The rise of smart machines opens up some scary possibilities; for our economy, for our democracy, even, in the most catastrophic scenarios, for our continued existence as a species. But, if we get our act together, the age of Artificial Intelligence could be one in which we rebuild the middle class, says MIT's David Autor, one of the top labor economists in the world." Yeah. I think he's full of shit.

"The Justice Department said Tuesday that it had disrupted a long-running Russian cyberespionage campaign that infected computer networks in dozens of countries, including in the United States, and resulted in the theft of sensitive information from governments."

"President Vladimir Putin declared Tuesday that the West has unleashed “a real war” against Russia, reprising a familiar refrain at scaled-down Victory Day celebrations that may reflect the toll the Ukraine conflict is taking on his forces."

"Tucker Carlson, who was Fox News' biggest star until his abrupt firing last month, says he's taking his show to Twitter." Haven't we suffered enough on Twitter?

"The man who killed eight people and injured seven more in a shooting at Allen Premium Outlets Saturday was armed with eight weapons and had 'neo-Nazi ideation,' Texas Department of Public Safety officials said Tuesday." But they're still not sure what his motive was. Strong side-eye.

Ma href="">"WBHM Birmingham asked Tuberville if white nationalists should be allowed to serve in the military. 'They call them that,' the senator responded. 'I call them Americans.'… Tuberville had explicitly defended 'white extremists' and 'white nationalists' earlier in the interview, alleging that President Biden is 'destroying' the military by opposing their inclusion." In case you were still wondering what side the GOP was on. After their attempt at a coup failed, they're now trying to subvert from the inside.

"(George) Santos, whose astonishing pattern of lies and fabrications stunned even hardened politicos, has been charged on a 13-count indictment, including seven counts of wire fraud, three counts of money laundering, one count of theft of public funds, and two counts of making materially false statements to the House of Representatives."

"Republican Rep. George Santos surrendered to federal authorities at a courthouse in suburban Long Island on Wednesday facing 13 counts of criminal wrongdoing."

"A jury found Donald Trump liable Tuesday for sexually abusing advice columnist E. Jean Carroll in 1996, awarding her $5 million in a judgment that could haunt the former president as he campaigns to regain the White House."

Jim Wright on the CNN spectacle of having That Fucking Guy on.

"Facing growing pressure to show progress in their investigations, House Republicans on Wednesday plan to detail what they say are concerning new findings about President Joe Biden ’s family and their finances… The smoking gun, according to the GOP, is 'thousands of pages' of recently obtained financial records that include more than 150 suspicious activity reports connected to the president’s son Hunter Biden and brother James Biden, as well as a growing number of associates." Again, the fetish with the page numbering. And a heavy dollop of "something must be in there" and not a lot of "what is in those pages."

Monday, May 8, 2023

Linkee-poo midnight rider

"Carrie Fisher is receiving a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, a May the Fourth tribute to one of the 'Star Wars' franchise’s most beloved figures." Finally.

"But it’s the concerns of insiders in the AI research community that are attracting particular attention. A pioneering researcher and the so-called 'Godfather of AI' Geoffrey Hinton quit his role at Google so he could more freely speak about the dangers of the technology he helped create."

"As hot as the Earth's weather has been in recent years, it's about to get hotter: El Niño is on the way, with warmer sea temperatures promising new weather extremes, U.S. and international forecasters say." We're boned.

"From Montego to Miami, an influx of algae called sargassum is leaving stinky brown carpets over what was once prime tourist sand. It's the most sargassum researchers have tracked this early in the year… Deciding what to do with it is proving more challenging the more we learn about it — and inspiring some entrepreneurs to rethink removing sargassum altogether."

"The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame announced its 2023 class of inductees on Wednesday, with seven performers being awarded the distinction out of the original 14 nominees announced back in February. The class reflects a wide-range of artists across genres, from country and rock singer-songwriters like Willie Nelson and Sheryl Crow, to the late, soulful pop star George Michael and quintessential soul vocal group The Spinners."

"The Writers Guild of America is on strike, and a vital part of the entertainment industry could be in for a long work stoppage… By many accounts, the TV and film industry is overdue for a reckoning, after the pandemic made the 2020 contract bargaining season a dud. That prevented writers and their employers, represented by the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, from reaching new agreements on emerging technology and business practices."

"When Utahns logged onto adult content site PornHub on Monday, May 1, they were met with a message saying the company has 'made the difficult decision to completely disable access to the website in Utah.' The preemptive block came two days before a new state law requiring the site to verify the age of users went into effect… The move almost instantly sparked conversations about the unintended consequences of the law — and ways for Utahns to get around it."

"The Biden administration on Thursday cautioned Americans about the growing risks of medical credit cards and other loans for medical bills, warning in a new report that high interest rates can deepen patients' debts and threaten their financial security."

"In an unprompted Tuesday email, Musk wrote: 'So is NPR going to start posting on Twitter again, or should we reassign @NPR to another company?'" Musk is keeping his nail clipping and urine in jars now, isn't he.

"Both manufacturers are offering affected customers free software upgrades they say will fix the problem, but cars affected by the vulnerability are still on the market, despite the fact that a growing list of major insurance companies say they won't cover them for the time being. Most states require drivers to have automobile insurance to be on the road."

"The Federal Reserve raised interest rates by another quarter percentage point Wednesday, extending its 14-month crackdown on stubborn inflation… With signs of a softening job market and slower economic growth, this could be the central bank's last rate hike for a while, especially as turmoil in the banking sector raises new uncertainties."

How did that work out? "U.S. employers added 253,000 jobs in April, according to a report from the Labor Department Friday, a significant uptick from the month before… Meanwhile, the unemployment rate fell to 3.4% in April from 3.5% in March. The unemployment rate for African Americans fell to 4.7% — a record low."

"New York’s City Council will introduce a pair of bills on Wednesday afternoon aimed at curbing the use of facial recognition and other types of biometric surveillance by private businesses and landlords."

"Russian authorities accused Ukraine of trying to carry out drone strikes on the Kremlin overnight to assassinate President Vladimir Putin, and warned of possible retaliation." Sure, Vlad. Sure.v "Ukraine and Russia pressed their wartime rhetoric Thursday, with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy expressing confidence that Vladimir Putin would be convicted of war crimes and the Kremlin alleging that the U.S. was behind an assassination attempt against the Russian president." Wouldn't count on it, Henry Kissinger just turned 100, and he's still free.

"The choking death of a man in the New York subway was setting off powerful reactions Thursday, with some calling it a homicide and others defending the passenger’s actions as defense against disorder." It was murder.

"The death of a Black man who appeared to be suffering from mental illness on an F train on Monday is stirring outrage after a white man who had placed him in a chokehold wasn’t charged by the NYPD."

"Eight people are dead and nine others injured in Brownsville, Texas, after a car ran into pedestrians Sunday morning while they were waiting at a bus stop, police said."v "The man who opened fire Saturday at an outlet mall in Allen, Texas, killing eight people and wounding at least seven others was identified (ed note, fuck his identity)… Authorities have not yet zeroed in on a specific motive, but investigators uncovered an extensive social media presence by the gunman, including a possible link to right-wing extremism, a senior law enforcement source familiar with the investigation told CNN."

"Lawmakers in Montana, Tennessee and Kansas have voted in the past few weeks to narrowly define who is 'female' and who is 'male' in state law using such terms as 'gametes,' 'ova,' 'sex chromosomes,' 'genitalia' and 'immutable biological sex.'" Immutable biological… Fungus has entered the conversation and would like a word.

"A jury in Washington, D.C., found Tarrio guilty of seditious conspiracy after hearing from dozens of witnesses over more than three months in one of the most serious cases brought in the stunning attack that unfolded on Jan. 6, 2021, as the world watched on live TV." Boom.

"Fox News is opposing a renewed effort by three news organizations to unseal documents related to its recently settled defamation lawsuit, saying it would do nothing but 'gratify private spite or promote public scandal.'" Legalize for, "it would be awfully embarrassing."

"A week after Fox News fired star host Tucker Carlson — for reasons that remain unexplained — he has been the subject of a handful of embarrassing stories about some of his private messages and statements while at the network."

"'The highest court in the land shouldn't have the lowest ethical standards,' said Senate Judiciary Chairman Sen. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., at a hearing on ethics oversight at the high court. 'That reality is driving a crisis in public confidence in the Supreme Court. The status quo must change.'" But, Senator Durbin, only one of us has the power to enact that change.


Tuesday, May 2, 2023

Linkee-poo the wind in the wires made a tattle tale sound

Gordon Lightfoot and Jerry Springer, and so it goes.

A more personal Gofund me for a coworker who is watching her child pass before her eyes. Again, I don't share these often, but this is closer to home than most. Same rules as usual, if you can, please help (I know there's often times I can't). And if not, at least send positive vibes and prayers if you're so inclined for both her child, her and her family.

"Walking into Toni Morrison: Sites of Memory, a new exhibition curated from the late author's archives at Princeton University, is an emotional experience for anyone who loves literature. Dozens of pages are on display, most of them waterlogged and brown from burning."

"Negotiations between the Writers Guild of America and film and TV studios and streamers broke down late Monday night, with leaders of the union now saying they will go on strike 'effective 12:01 AM, Tuesday, May 2.'" Oh Jeez.

"People living along the Mississippi River watched warily Sunday as water levels rose in southeast Iowa and northwest Illinois, awaiting spring crests as floodwaters began to slowly recede and reveal damage in areas further north."

"NASA's Voyager 2 spacecraft, which has been probing the outer bounds of the solar system for over 45 years, is running out of power. But a new plan aims to keep its interstellar mission alive for at least three more years."

"Even before the reign of the dinosaurs ended in a mass extinction event about 65 million years ago, mammals had already gotten a humble but solid foothold… That's just one of the findings from a close examination of DNA from 240 different mammalian species, an ambitious effort to understand how hairy, milk-producing mammals — including humans — evolved to have such an astonishing array of sizes, shapes, and special abilities."

"Rates of the disease have soared in recent decades, spurred by the complex interaction of genes that make people more likely to store food as fat, a food system that provides easy and cheap access to processed treats explicitly designed to be overconsumed, and social settings that limit access to healthy options and exercise for many people." The new weight loss drugs, how they work.

"HPV is sexually transmitted. For oropharyngeal cancer, the main risk factor is the number of lifetime sexual partners, especially oral sex. Those with six or more lifetime oral-sex partners are 8.5 times more likely to develop oropharyngeal cancer than those who do not practice oral sex."

"The Minnesota Senate cast its first vote to legalize recreational marijuana Friday, pushing the proposal closer to becoming law than ever before… Senators passed the DFL-led marijuana bill on a 34-33 vote, with all Democrats voting for it and all Republicans opposed."

How's 6 Sigma and Lean Manufacturing working out for everybody? "Shortages of drugs like Adderall are growing in the United States, and experts see no clear path to resolving them. For patients, that can mean treatment delays, medication switches and other hassles filling a prescription."

"From banks to burger joints, the U.S. economy is showing signs of stress as nervous shoppers watch their spending and anxious lenders keep a tight grip on credit… A report from the Commerce Department Thursday shows the nation's gross domestic product grew at an annual rate of just 1.1% in the first three months of the year, compared to a 2.6% pace in the previous quarter. Growth was weighed down by declining inventories and housing investment."

"Nearly three-quarters, or 73%, of adults ages 27 to 42 are living paycheck to paycheck, LendingClub found." Millenials are now in the age category that typically spends the most of their money, so this isn't necessarily an odd finding. But I do agree that the next generations are seeing more fiscal headwinds.

"More than a half million of the poorest Americans could be left without health insurance under legislation passed by House Republicans that would require people to work in exchange for health care coverage through Medicaid." Cruelty is the point.

"Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen warned lawmakers Monday that the federal government could run short of money to pay its bills as early as June 1 unless the debt ceiling is raised soon."

"Under a new rule proposed by the Bureau of Prisons, however, most of the money Hoolan sends to her son would not go to him. Instead, the majority of the money sent to prisoners' commissary accounts would first go to pay their restitution debts and outstanding court fines… Opponents of the plan say it shifts responsibility to family members, like Hoolan." And that is a completely boneheaded way to try and solve the problem. And in any sane society it would immediately be shut down. This is a form a debtors prison. You want to really help with this? Okay, so for prison employment inmates are paid pennies an hour for their work. Okay, let's keep that, but the companies that use inmate labor (and places like the State of California that uses them as fire jumpers) have to pay the competitive wages for the time. The difference will go to pay restitution and court costs and fines. Do that and I'll believe you're seriousness about this problem.

"Authorities in southeast Texas are offering a $80,000 reward for any tips that lead to the capture of 38-year-old Francisco Oropesa, who police say shot five people to death in a home early Saturday morning and then fled the scene."

"In Nebraska, where abortion is banned after 20 weeks of pregnancy, an effort to ban abortion at about the sixth week of pregnancy fell one vote short of breaking a filibuster. Cheers erupted outside the legislative chamber as the last vote was cast, with opponents of the bill waving signs and chanting, 'Whose house? Our house!'"

"Now that the year-long war of words between Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and the Walt Disney Co has landed in the courts, the Republican leader might find his verbal barbs directed at the entertainment giant coming back to bite, legal experts said."

"An Arizona House Democrat and ordained minister recorded on video hiding Bibles at a lounge at the state capitol apologized to her peers for her actions… Stahl Hamilton described her actions as a type of protest regarding the separation of church and state."

"But Republican presidential hopeful Ron DeSantis failed to impress British business chiefs at a high-profile London event Friday, in a tired performance described variously as 'horrendous,' 'low-wattage' and 'like the end of an overseas trip.'"