People keep dying

Ukraine

For now, efforts to make sense of the likelihood of war are likely to induce whiplash. Depending on the hour, I’m convinced that war is implausible—or I’m certain it’s inevitable. I could almost sympathize with the anonymous source close to the Kremlin who spoke last week to Meduza, an independent news site. “In December, I was convinced that there wouldn’t be a war,” the source said. “Last week, I considered this a likely scenario. This week it’s rather unlikely.” Perhaps the only thing that’s certain is that war would be an outright disaster—not just for Ukraine but for Russia, too—yet, maddeningly, that doesn’t make it impossible.[1]

Julia Ioffe, “Putin’s Pickle,” Puck News, February 3, 2022, https://puck.news/putins-pickle-russia-ukraine/

Aamer Madhani, Lorne Cook, and Suzan Fraser, “U.S. says new intel shows Russia plotting false-flag attack,” Los Angeles Times, February 3, 2022, https://www.latimes.com/world-nation/story/2022-02-03/russian-troop-buildup-belarus-raises-fears-ukraine

Joshua Yaffa, “Putin’s Next Move in Ukraine Is an Open Question in Moscow,” New Yorker, February 3, 2022, https://www.newyorker.com/news/dispatch/putins-next-move-in-ukraine-is-an-open-question-in-moscow


Work

There is a new blog post entitled, “Shooting rich people into space is more interesting.”

And no, despite Abha Bhattarai’s article,[2] my phone still ain’t ringing.

Steven Greenhouse, “Amazon chews through the average worker in eight months. They need a union,” Guardian, February 4, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/feb/04/amazon-chews-through-the-average-worker-in-eight-months-they-need-a-union

Abha Bhattarai, “Despite omicron surge, businesses desperate to find and keep workers,” Washington Post, February 5, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2022/02/05/economy-jobs-omicron-new-normal/


COVID-19 Pandemic

Doctors and charlatans

There is another new blog post entitled, “Racing to one million dead from COVID-19 in the U.S.

Associated Press, “‘It is an astronomically high number’: US Covid death toll surpasses 900,000,” Guardian, February 4, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/feb/04/us-covid-death-toll-surpasses-900000


Pittsburgh

Republican National Convention

Pittsburgh Mayor Ed Gainey, a Democrat, initially signed a letter of support for bringing the Republican National Convention to Pittsburgh, but backtracked a bit and said his initial support was merely “a matter of procedure.” In a statement, Gainey said he had concerns about the RNC’s potential impact on safety and covid-19 mitigation.[3]

Ryan Deto, “Pittsburgh out of running to host 2024 Republican National Convention,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, February 4, 2022, https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-out-of-running-to-host-2024-republican-national-convention/

Snow plowing

So I hadn’t heard anything about Pittsburgh’s snow plowing since the last storm, which was a bit of a surprise, considering the uproar early in Ed Gainey’s term and that promises of improvement had so far utterly failed to materialize.[4] I was also concerned about the freezing rain we’d had before the snow.

It took me a while to brush enough snow off my car that it would at least not be blowing snow on everybody else on the road so I could go first to a coin-op car wash to wash off the rest of it, including no small quantity of ice, and then to one of my usual automated car washes to give it a proper treatment. Mostly I wasn’t in Pittsburgh until late in the day. The roads were passable, but still a mess.

Sidney Street in the mostly flat South Side west of the Birmingham Bridge had a layer of white on it from curb to curb as did some of Muriel Street. P. J. McArdle Roadway had not been cleared. The latter is the major route from the South Side to the Liberty Tunnel, the Liberty Bridge, and Mount Washington; I only went to the Liberty Tunnel but saw it had not been cleared further up towards Mount Washington.

We are, I’m guessing back to “it is what it is” mode on the snow plowing in Pittsburgh. My contempt for Pittsburgh Public Works is as close to infinite as my small brain can get.


Facebook

The headline, “Facebook’s faceplant on Wall Street could be just the beginning for some tech stocks,” was bad enough, but it’s the subtitle on a Washington Post article that really got my attention. It said, “End of free money has investors rethinking what’s safe — and what isn’t.”[5] As I understand it, Uber and Lyft are considered technology companies. I understood Facebook to at least be profitable; the same cannot be said for Uber and Lyft.[6]

The “end of free money” bit refers to an apparent Federal Reserve decision to raise interest rates from rock bottom; Facebook, now named “Meta,” is facing a number of problems[7] that I really don’t care about. The article does not mention either Uber or Lyft, but if investors start looking more carefully at their heretofore reckless gambles, this cannot be good news for the rideshare companies.[8]

David J. Lynch and Gerrit De Vynck, “Facebook’s faceplant on Wall Street could be just the beginning for some tech stocks,” Washington Post, February 5, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2022/02/05/facebook-meta-technology-stocks/

Eric Adams

Eric Adams, the allegedly vegan mayor of New York City, eats fish. . . . But for reasons I can’t claim to comprehend, Adams and his office continue to publicly claim that Adams maintains a strict plant-based diet, even when people have now repeatedly seen him eat the fruits of the sea with their own two eyes.[9]

Lying scum psychopath.
Ryu Spaeth, “Eric Adams Eats Fish,” New York, February 5, 2022, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2022/02/eric-adams-eats-fish.html


Donald Trump

Coup attempt


The article doesn’t exactly say there are no penalties:[10]

“It is against the law, but the problem is that the Presidential Records Act, as written, does not have any real enforcement mechanism,” said James Grossman, executive director of the American Historical Association. “It’s that sort of thing where there’s a law, but who has the authority to enforce the law, and the existing law is toothless.”[11]

Ashley Parker et al., “‘He never stopped ripping things up’: Inside Trump’s relentless document destruction habits,” Washington Post, February 5, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/02/05/trump-ripping-documents/


  1. [1]Joshua Yaffa, “Putin’s Next Move in Ukraine Is an Open Question in Moscow,” New Yorker, February 3, 2022, https://www.newyorker.com/news/dispatch/putins-next-move-in-ukraine-is-an-open-question-in-moscow
  2. [2]Abha Bhattarai, “Despite omicron surge, businesses desperate to find and keep workers,” Washington Post, February 5, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2022/02/05/economy-jobs-omicron-new-normal/
  3. [3]Ryan Deto, “Pittsburgh out of running to host 2024 Republican National Convention,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, February 4, 2022, https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-out-of-running-to-host-2024-republican-national-convention/
  4. [4]Marcie Cipriani, “Maintenance issues with Public Works trucks creates challenges when treating roads,” WTAE, January 25, 2022, https://www.wtae.com/article/pittsburgh-snow-plow-issues-treating-roads/38888584; Rick Earle, “Pittsburgh Public Works launches internal investigation following snow response issues,” WPXI, January 7, 2022, https://www.wpxi.com/news/local/pittsburgh-public-works-launches-internal-investigation-following-snow-response-issues/3ZAYYSR5WNCD5H5KE67WJ6SKBU/; Julia Felton, “Plowing continues on snow-covered Pittsburgh streets,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, January 7, 2022, https://triblive.com/local/plowing-continues-on-snow-covered-pittsburgh-streets/; Julia Felton, “Pittsburgh officials say snow response will be better ahead of Sunday storm,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, January 14, 2022, https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-officials-say-snow-response-will-be-better-ahead-of-sunday-storm/; Julia Felton, “Pittsburgh officials say they expect to have streets cleared for Tuesday commute,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, January 17, 2022, https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-officials-say-they-expect-to-have-streets-cleared-for-tuesday-commute/; Julia Felton, “Pittsburgh officials say 50 trucks still cleaning snow and ice,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, January 20, 2022, https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-officials-say-50-trucks-still-cleaning-snow-and-ice/; Julia Felton, “Pittsburgh crews working to clear city streets after Sunday’s snow,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, January 24, 2022, https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-crews-working-to-clear-city-streets-after-sundays-snow/; Taylor Spirito, “Pittsburgh residents frustrated after city side streets left unplowed,” WPXI, January 18, 2022, https://www.wpxi.com/news/local/pittsburgh-residents-frustrated-after-city-side-streets-left-unplowed/NLUWU6RFFBCKBCYKDEMU7Y3FWQ/; Kylie Walker, “Pittsburgh Public Works releases statement in response to snow removal concerns,” WTAE, January 18, 2022, https://www.wtae.com/article/pittsburgh-public-works-releases-statement-in-response-to-snow-removal-concerns/38803017; Kylie Walker, “City of Pittsburgh updates snow removal process after Monday’s storm,” WTAE, January 25, 2022, https://www.wtae.com/article/pittsburgh-snow-removal-update-after-monday-storm/38883671; WTAE, “Residents in Pittsburgh’s Brookline neighborhood frustrated with snow response,” January 24, 2022, https://www.wtae.com/article/residents-in-pittsburghs-brookline-neighborhood-frustrated-with-snow-response/38876127
  5. [5]David J. Lynch and Gerrit De Vynck, “Facebook’s faceplant on Wall Street could be just the beginning for some tech stocks,” Washington Post, February 5, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2022/02/05/facebook-meta-technology-stocks/
  6. [6]David Benfell, “This is not a business plan,” Not Housebroken, January 8, 2022, https://disunitedstates.org/2021/06/20/this-is-not-a-business-plan/
  7. [7]David J. Lynch and Gerrit De Vynck, “Facebook’s faceplant on Wall Street could be just the beginning for some tech stocks,” Washington Post, February 5, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2022/02/05/facebook-meta-technology-stocks/
  8. [8]David Benfell, “This is not a business plan,” Not Housebroken, January 8, 2022, https://disunitedstates.org/2021/06/20/this-is-not-a-business-plan/
  9. [9]Ryu Spaeth, “Eric Adams Eats Fish,” New York, February 5, 2022, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2022/02/eric-adams-eats-fish.html
  10. [10]Ashley Parker et al., “‘He never stopped ripping things up’: Inside Trump’s relentless document destruction habits,” Washington Post, February 5, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/02/05/trump-ripping-documents/
  11. [11]Ashley Parker et al., “‘He never stopped ripping things up’: Inside Trump’s relentless document destruction habits,” Washington Post, February 5, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/02/05/trump-ripping-documents/

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