Some oligarchs are squealing

Ukraine

There apparently remains little or no hope of a coup against Vladimir Putin.[1] The folks most likely[2] to pull one off, the security services,[3] are likely too incompetent to do so.[4] There’s nothing new here.[5]

What is new is that some oligarchs, especially those who amassed their fortunes prior to Putin’s rise to power, are echoing[6] the gripes of the security services.[7] It’s unlikely to make a difference,[8] but we can say that oligarchs are squealing.

Nataliya Vasilyeva, “Russia seeks to capture all of southern Ukraine in major expansion of war goals,” Telegraph, April 22, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2022/04/22/russia-seeks-capture-southern-ukraine-drastic-expansion-war/

Reuters, “India wants to be friends with West but needs Russian help to defend borders, finance minister tells Bloomberg,” April 23, 2022, https://www.reuters.com/world/india/india-wants-be-friends-with-west-needs-russian-help-defend-borders-says-finmin-2022-04-23/

Liz Sly, “The Belarusian railway workers who helped thwart Russia’s attack on Kyiv,” Washington Post, April 23, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/23/ukraine-belarus-railway-saboteurs-russia/

Viktor Yushchenko, “I’ve dealt with Putin before: I know what it will take to defeat this brutal despot,” Guardian, April 24, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/apr/24/vladimir-putin-despot-russia-viktor-yuschenko

Chiara Giordano, “Russia effectively at war with Nato, Lavrov says as he calls western weapons ‘legitimate targets,’” Independent, April 25, 2022, https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/russia-weapons-ukraine-war-nato-b2065422.html

Roland Oliphant, “World War Three now a ‘real’ danger, Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov warns,” Telegraph, April 25, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2022/04/25/real-danger-third-world-war-mysterious-attacks-russia-says-sergei/

CTV, “Top Russian diplomat warns Ukraine against provoking world war,” April 26, 2022, https://www.ctvnews.ca/world/top-russian-diplomat-warns-ukraine-against-provoking-world-war-1.5876149

Maciej Onoszko, Maciej Martewicz, and Slav Okov, “Russia to Cut Gas to Poland and Bulgaria, Making Energy a Weapon,” Bloomberg, April 26, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-26/russia-halted-gas-supplies-to-poland-onet-pl-reports-l2gapmmd

British Broadcasting Corporation, “Ukraine war: Poland says it will manage without Russian gas,” April 27, 2022, https://www.bbc.com/news/business-61237519

Julia Ioffe, “Biden’s New Ukrainian Calculus,” Puck News, April 27, 2022, https://puck.news/bidens-new-ukrainian-calculus/

Julian O’Shaughnessy, “War in Ukraine: West’s Bucha massacre claims killed hopes of peace, says Putin,” Times, April 27, 2022, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/war-in-ukraine-wests-bucha-massacre-claims-killed-hopes-of-peace-says-putin-6fk7g8t0d

Johan Ahlander, “Swedish PM rejects referendum on possible NATO membership,” Reuters, April 28, 2022, https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/swedish-pm-rejects-referendum-possible-nato-membership-2022-04-28/

Catherine Belton and Greg Miller, “Cracks emerge in Russian elite as tycoons start to bemoan invasion,” Washington Post, April 29, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/29/russia-oligarchs-ukraine-invasion-dissent/


  1. [1]Mark Galeotti, “How does Putin extract himself from this nightmare of his own making?” Times, March 5, 2022, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/how-does-putin-extract-himself-from-this-nightmare-of-his-own-making-v2ktvw08g; Julia Ioffe, “Europe’s 9/11,” Puck News, March 3, 2022, https://puck.news/europes-9-11/; Paul Nuki, “Why Vladimir Putin may stay in power longer than we think,” Telegraph, March 8, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2022/03/08/vladimir-putin-may-stay-power-longer-think/
  2. [2]Tom Ball, “Ukraine war: Putin ‘at risk of coup’ by Russian security services,” Times, March 23, 2022, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/ukraine-war-putin-at-risk-of-coup-by-russian-security-services-vm6qgxtnp; Lisa McIntosh Sundstrom, “Will Russians Toss Their Leader?” Tyee, March 25, 2022, https://thetyee.ca/Analysis/2022/03/25/Will-Russians-Toss-Their-Leader/
  3. [3]Steven L. Hall, “Putin doesn’t fear a coup by oligarchs. But he should fear his fellow spies,” Washington Post, March 10, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2022/03/10/putin-coup-russia-siloviki/
  4. [4]David Remnick, “The Weakness of the Despot,” New Yorker, March 11, 2022, https://www.newyorker.com/news/q-and-a/stephen-kotkin-putin-russia-ukraine-stalin
  5. [5]David Benfell, “Where does Vladimir Putin stop?” Not Housebroken, April 26, 2022, https://disunitedstates.org/2022/03/04/where-does-vladimir-putin-stop/
  6. [6]Catherine Belton and Greg Miller, “Cracks emerge in Russian elite as tycoons start to bemoan invasion,” Washington Post, April 29, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/29/russia-oligarchs-ukraine-invasion-dissent/
  7. [7]Steven L. Hall, “Putin doesn’t fear a coup by oligarchs. But he should fear his fellow spies,” Washington Post, March 10, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2022/03/10/putin-coup-russia-siloviki/
  8. [8]Steven L. Hall, “Putin doesn’t fear a coup by oligarchs. But he should fear his fellow spies,” Washington Post, March 10, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2022/03/10/putin-coup-russia-siloviki/

Elon Musk is only joking! Don’t you get it?

There are two new blog posts today:


Broadband

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “Scrap state law restricting broadband options,” April 27, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/opinion/editorials/2022/04/27/municipal-broadband-chattanooga-pennsylvania/stories/202204260084


Twitter

There is a new blog post entitled, “Elon Musk’s ‘free speech.’

On a side note, yes, Coca-Cola originally contained a small amount of cocaine.[1]

Dan Milmo and Mark Sweney, “Twitter takeover: EU and UK warn Elon Musk must comply or face sanctions,” Guardian, April 26, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2022/apr/26/twitter-takeover-jack-dorsey-elon-musk

William D. Cohan, “Elon’s Gamble: Imagining Tesla Stock Judgment Day,” Puck News, April 27, 2022, https://puck.news/elons-gamble-imagining-the-tesla-stock-judgment-day/


Police White supremacist gangs

Kevin Rector’s report makes pretty clear that the audit, ordered by the California legislature, has deficiencies; problems of bigotry in so-called “law enforcement” are likely more widespread than the audit was able to document.[2] But as I read this, I think about that Whitehall white supremacist gangster who allowed his dog to bark rabidly at a Black pedestrian.[3] And I point to California as an example where, sure, of course, there are racists, as there are everywhere, but at least they know they need to behave. Well, maybe only mostly.[4]

Kevin Rector, “Bias, far-right sympathies among California law enforcement going unchecked, audit finds,” Los Angeles Times, April 28, 2022, https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2022-04-28/audit-of-california-law-enforcement-finds-extreme-bias-among-officers-goes-unchecked


Ukraine

The headline on a Reuters article might be a bit misleading. Yes, Sweden’s prime minister is rejecting a referendum, as are some other politicians. That does not mean they are opposed to acceding to the North Atlantic Treaty Organization. It means they are concerned about keeping classified national security details classified;[5] evidently, these would have to be exposed in a campaign.

Julia Ioffe, “Mothers for Putin,” Puck News, April 21, 2022, https://puck.news/mothers-for-putin/

Nataliya Vasilyeva, “Russia seeks to capture all of southern Ukraine in major expansion of war goals,” Telegraph, April 22, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2022/04/22/russia-seeks-capture-southern-ukraine-drastic-expansion-war/

Reuters, “India wants to be friends with West but needs Russian help to defend borders, finance minister tells Bloomberg,” April 23, 2022, https://www.reuters.com/world/india/india-wants-be-friends-with-west-needs-russian-help-defend-borders-says-finmin-2022-04-23/

Liz Sly, “The Belarusian railway workers who helped thwart Russia’s attack on Kyiv,” Washington Post, April 23, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/23/ukraine-belarus-railway-saboteurs-russia/

Viktor Yushchenko, “I’ve dealt with Putin before: I know what it will take to defeat this brutal despot,” Guardian, April 24, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/apr/24/vladimir-putin-despot-russia-viktor-yuschenko

Chiara Giordano, “Russia effectively at war with Nato, Lavrov says as he calls western weapons ‘legitimate targets,’” Independent, April 25, 2022, https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/russia-weapons-ukraine-war-nato-b2065422.html

Roland Oliphant, “World War Three now a ‘real’ danger, Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov warns,” Telegraph, April 25, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2022/04/25/real-danger-third-world-war-mysterious-attacks-russia-says-sergei/

CTV, “Top Russian diplomat warns Ukraine against provoking world war,” April 26, 2022, https://www.ctvnews.ca/world/top-russian-diplomat-warns-ukraine-against-provoking-world-war-1.5876149

Maciej Onoszko, Maciej Martewicz, and Slav Okov, “Russia to Cut Gas to Poland and Bulgaria, Making Energy a Weapon,” Bloomberg, April 26, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-26/russia-halted-gas-supplies-to-poland-onet-pl-reports-l2gapmmd

British Broadcasting Corporation, “Ukraine war: Poland says it will manage without Russian gas,” April 27, 2022, https://www.bbc.com/news/business-61237519

Julia Ioffe, “Biden’s New Ukrainian Calculus,” Puck News, April 27, 2022, https://puck.news/bidens-new-ukrainian-calculus/

Julian O’Shaughnessy, “War in Ukraine: West’s Bucha massacre claims killed hopes of peace, says Putin,” Times, April 27, 2022, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/war-in-ukraine-wests-bucha-massacre-claims-killed-hopes-of-peace-says-putin-6fk7g8t0d

Johan Ahlander, “Swedish PM rejects referendum on possible NATO membership,” Reuters, April 28, 2022, https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/swedish-pm-rejects-referendum-possible-nato-membership-2022-04-28/


  1. [1]National Institute on Drug Abuse, “Did Coca-Cola Ever Contain Cocaine?” November 9, 2020, https://archives.drugabuse.gov/blog/post/did-coca-cola-ever-contain-cocaine
  2. [2]Kevin Rector, “Bias, far-right sympathies among California law enforcement going unchecked, audit finds,” Los Angeles Times, April 28, 2022, https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2022-04-28/audit-of-california-law-enforcement-finds-extreme-bias-among-officers-goes-unchecked
  3. [3]David Benfell, “Hey cops! Do you know what year it is?” Not Housebroken, August 27, 2019, https://disunitedstates.org/2019/08/27/hey-cops-do-you-know-what-year-it-is/
  4. [4]Kevin Rector, “Bias, far-right sympathies among California law enforcement going unchecked, audit finds,” Los Angeles Times, April 28, 2022, https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2022-04-28/audit-of-california-law-enforcement-finds-extreme-bias-among-officers-goes-unchecked
  5. [5]Johan Ahlander, “Swedish PM rejects referendum on possible NATO membership,” Reuters, April 28, 2022, https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/swedish-pm-rejects-referendum-possible-nato-membership-2022-04-28/

Losing Democratic Party coattails

Work

The same corporate executives complaining that you simply can’t get good help these days are paying that help a smaller share of company revenues. . . .

In effect, we’ve seen a restoration of the Crap-Job Economy that displaced the economy of a generation earlier. As Daniel Alpert, Jeffrey Ferry, Robert C. Hockett, and Amir Khaleghi of Cornell Law School’s Job Quality Index project have noted, as recently as 1990 high-wage jobs accounted for 47.3 percent of all jobs and low-wage jobs (what I call “crap jobs”) accounted for 52.7 percent. Since then, high-wage jobs have fallen to 37 percent of all jobs created and crap jobs have risen to 63 percent. (In case you’re wondering, the definition of a high-wage versus a crap job is fairly simple: A high-wage job pays above the median weekly income, and a crap job pays below it.)[1]

Timothy Noah, “Yes, Wages Did Go Up. But Now We’re Back to the Crap-Job Economy,” New Republic, April 27, 2022, https://newrepublic.com/article/166218/covid-wages-up-return-crap-job-economy


John Fetterman

Arch-Trumpist Doug Mastriano, the leading Republican in the race to succeed Tom Wolfe as Pennsylvania’s governor, campaigned at a QAnon event.[2] I see a lot more Mastriano yard signs than I do Josh Shapiro signs; Shapiro, the current state attorney general, is the likely Democratic candidate. My guess—only a guess and not an educated one—is that Shapiro rides on losing Democratic Party coattails this November.

Andrew Seidman, “A top GOP candidate for governor campaigned at an event promoting QAnon and conspiracy theories about 9/11,” Philadelphia Inquirer, April 27, 2022, https://www.inquirer.com/politics/election/doug-mastriano-teddy-daniels-qanon-conference-gop-candidates-20220427.html


Ukraine

Bloomberg, “Kremlin Insiders Alarmed Over Growing Toll of Putin’s War in Ukraine,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/putin-s-war-in-ukraine-has-russian-elites-fearing-global-isolation

Bloomberg, “Russia Test-Fires Nuclear-Capable ICBM in Warning to U.S. Allies,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/russia-stages-test-of-nuclear-missile-in-warning-to-u-s-allies

David E. Sanger, “Russia’s Missile Test Fuels U.S. Fears of an Isolated Putin,” New York Times, April 20, 2022, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/20/us/politics/russia-putin-missile-test.html

Julia Ioffe, “Mothers for Putin,” Puck News, April 21, 2022, https://puck.news/mothers-for-putin/

Nataliya Vasilyeva, “Russia seeks to capture all of southern Ukraine in major expansion of war goals,” Telegraph, April 22, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2022/04/22/russia-seeks-capture-southern-ukraine-drastic-expansion-war/

Reuters, “India wants to be friends with West but needs Russian help to defend borders, finance minister tells Bloomberg,” April 23, 2022, https://www.reuters.com/world/india/india-wants-be-friends-with-west-needs-russian-help-defend-borders-says-finmin-2022-04-23/

Liz Sly, “The Belarusian railway workers who helped thwart Russia’s attack on Kyiv,” Washington Post, April 23, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/23/ukraine-belarus-railway-saboteurs-russia/

Viktor Yushchenko, “I’ve dealt with Putin before: I know what it will take to defeat this brutal despot,” Guardian, April 24, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2022/apr/24/vladimir-putin-despot-russia-viktor-yuschenko

Chiara Giordano, “Russia effectively at war with Nato, Lavrov says as he calls western weapons ‘legitimate targets,’” Independent, April 25, 2022, https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/russia-weapons-ukraine-war-nato-b2065422.html

Roland Oliphant, “World War Three now a ‘real’ danger, Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov warns,” Telegraph, April 25, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2022/04/25/real-danger-third-world-war-mysterious-attacks-russia-says-sergei/

CTV, “Top Russian diplomat warns Ukraine against provoking world war,” April 26, 2022, https://www.ctvnews.ca/world/top-russian-diplomat-warns-ukraine-against-provoking-world-war-1.5876149

Maciej Onoszko, Maciej Martewicz, and Slav Okov, “Russia to Cut Gas to Poland and Bulgaria, Making Energy a Weapon,” Bloomberg, April 26, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-26/russia-halted-gas-supplies-to-poland-onet-pl-reports-l2gapmmd

British Broadcasting Corporation, “Ukraine war: Poland says it will manage without Russian gas,” April 27, 2022, https://www.bbc.com/news/business-61237519

Julian O’Shaughnessy, “War in Ukraine: West’s Bucha massacre claims killed hopes of peace, says Putin,” Times, April 27, 2022, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/war-in-ukraine-wests-bucha-massacre-claims-killed-hopes-of-peace-says-putin-6fk7g8t0d


  1. [1]Timothy Noah, “Yes, Wages Did Go Up. But Now We’re Back to the Crap-Job Economy,” New Republic, April 27, 2022, https://newrepublic.com/article/166218/covid-wages-up-return-crap-job-economy
  2. [2]Andrew Seidman, “A top GOP candidate for governor campaigned at an event promoting QAnon and conspiracy theories about 9/11,” Philadelphia Inquirer, April 27, 2022, https://www.inquirer.com/politics/election/doug-mastriano-teddy-daniels-qanon-conference-gop-candidates-20220427.html

Does Vladimir Putin really believe the nonsense he has peddled? Pray that he does not.

Donald Trump

Finances

Sonia Moghe and Kara Scannell, “Judge holds former President Trump in civil contempt for failing to comply with document subpoenas from New York attorney general,” Cable News Network, April 25, 2022, https://www.cnn.com/2022/04/25/politics/trump-contempt-hearing/index.html


Fossil fuels

Northeast

This, written in 2004, remains a question today:

Although hydrogen is the most plentiful element in the universe, isolating it so that it can be used as a fuel source requires a lot of energy, which has to be generated somehow. What’s more, much of the hydrogen fuel currently available is made from coal and other fossil fuels. As a result, critics question whether hydrogen fuel is as good for the environment as boosters claim.[1]

Remember Arnold Schwarzenegger’s hydrogen-powered Hummer?[2] Remember, for that matter, the Toyota Mirai?[3] Some folks are still at it, and the idea is to extract hydrogen from (fracked, I assume) Western Pennsylvania natural gas[4] in a process which also emits that great greenhouse gas carbon dioxide, so the idea is to sequester that carbon dioxide underneath western Pennsylvanian property.[5]

Anya Litvak, “Pa. landowners have dealt with coal, oil and gas rights. Now, there are pore rights,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, April 25, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/business/powersource/2022/04/25/pennsylvania-hydrogen-carbon-sequestration-storage-hub-title-search-pores-energy-production-landowners-landmen/stories/202204250014


Twitter

Elon Musk will indeed buy Twitter, taking it private.[6] I’ll be watching, but this seems hyperbolic to me:

“He’s more powerful than countries now,” said Ross Gerber, a Tesla investor close to [Elon] Musk who said he had bought Twitter shares last week in hopes the deal went through. “He has the most important technology asset in America … probably one of the most strategic military assets in the world … and now he has one of the most important communications tools in the world.”[7]

Douglas MacMillan et al., “Elon Musk acquires Twitter for roughly $44 billion,” Washington Post, April 25, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2022/04/25/twitter-elon-musk-deal/


Ukraine

The question that is now before us is, if you think you are already at war with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization,[8] and you are warning of World War III,[9] how long before you start acting accordingly?

“Everyone is reciting incantations that in no case can we allow World War III,” [Sergeĭ Lavrov] said in a Russian television interview.

Lavrov said he would not want to see risks of a nuclear confrontation “artificially inflated now, when the risks are rather significant.”

“The danger is serious,” he said. “It is real. It should not be underestimated.”[10]

Such talk is variously dismissed as ‘bravado’ or as a concession of weakness or defeat.[11]

Ukraine’s foreign minister Dmytro Kuleba said he too regarded Russia’s scaremongering as a sign of weakness.

Russia has lost its “last hope to scare the world off supporting Ukraine,” he wrote on Twitter after Mr [Sergeĭ] Lavrov’s interview, adding: “This only means Moscow senses defeat.”[12]

But we must not forget that the Kremlin has repeatedly said it views its invasion of Ukraine as responding to an existential threat.[13] If the Kremlin indeed feels it has nothing to lose, then it might well act accordingly.

So now the question really is, do the Kremlin and Vladimir Putin really believe the nonsense that they have peddled? Or is this really just imperial ambition? Or are the two somehow confounded, as Russian empire seen as existentially essential to Russia’s survival? So far as I know, no one knows the answer to these questions.

Shayan Sardarizadeh and Leo Sands, “Ukraine war: Dramatic images appear to show sinking Russian warship Moskva,” British Broadcasting Corporation, April 18, 2022, https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-61141118

Jeanne Whalen, “Russian Orthodox leader backs war in Ukraine, divides faith,” Washington Post, April 18, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/18/russian-orthodox-church-ukraine-war/

Jonah Goldberg, “Ukraine, Russia and the moral clarity of ‘good guys’ vs. ‘bad guys’,” Los Angeles Times, April 19, 2022, https://www.latimes.com/opinion/story/2022-04-19/column-ukraine-russia-good-guys-bad-guys

Lorenzo Tondo, Luke Harding, and Isobel Koshiw, “Russia takes Donbas town but Ukrainian frontline ‘still holding,’” Guardian, April 19, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/apr/19/ukraine-war-battle-for-donbas-has-begun-russia-launches-offensive

Bloomberg, “Kremlin Insiders Alarmed Over Growing Toll of Putin’s War in Ukraine,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/putin-s-war-in-ukraine-has-russian-elites-fearing-global-isolation

Bloomberg, “Russia Test-Fires Nuclear-Capable ICBM in Warning to U.S. Allies,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/russia-stages-test-of-nuclear-missile-in-warning-to-u-s-allies

David E. Sanger, “Russia’s Missile Test Fuels U.S. Fears of an Isolated Putin,” New York Times, April 20, 2022, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/20/us/politics/russia-putin-missile-test.html

Julia Ioffe, “Mothers for Putin,” Puck News, April 21, 2022, https://puck.news/mothers-for-putin/

Nataliya Vasilyeva, “Russia seeks to capture all of southern Ukraine in major expansion of war goals,” Telegraph, April 22, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2022/04/22/russia-seeks-capture-southern-ukraine-drastic-expansion-war/

Reuters, “India wants to be friends with West but needs Russian help to defend borders, finance minister tells Bloomberg,” April 23, 2022, https://www.reuters.com/world/india/india-wants-be-friends-with-west-needs-russian-help-defend-borders-says-finmin-2022-04-23/

Liz Sly, “The Belarusian railway workers who helped thwart Russia’s attack on Kyiv,” Washington Post, April 23, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/23/ukraine-belarus-railway-saboteurs-russia/

Chiara Giordano, “Russia effectively at war with Nato, Lavrov says as he calls western weapons ‘legitimate targets,’” Independent, April 25, 2022, https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/russia-weapons-ukraine-war-nato-b2065422.html

Roland Oliphant, “World War Three now a ‘real’ danger, Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov warns,” Telegraph, April 25, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2022/04/25/real-danger-third-world-war-mysterious-attacks-russia-says-sergei/


  1. [1]Miguel Bustillo, “Gov. Pulls Hydrogen SUV Out of Thin Air,” Los Angeles Times, October 23, 2004, https://www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm-2004-oct-23-me-hummer23-story.html
  2. [2]Miguel Bustillo, “Gov. Pulls Hydrogen SUV Out of Thin Air,” Los Angeles Times, October 23, 2004, https://www.latimes.com/archives/la-xpm-2004-oct-23-me-hummer23-story.html; Motor Trend, “Arnold Schwarzenegger and GM’s Hydrogen Hummer,” November 29, 2004, https://www.motortrend.com/news/news041129-hummer/
  3. [3]Toyota, “Mirai,” 2022, https://www.toyota.com/mirai/
  4. [4]Anya Litvak, “Alliance wants to make Western Pa. a hub for hydrogen production and carbon storage,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, February 3, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/business/powersource/2022/02/03/Western-Pennsylvania-international-industrial-power-energy-alliance-hydrogen-carbon-storage-hub-IN-2-Market/stories/202202030120
  5. [5]Anya Litvak, “Pa. landowners have dealt with coal, oil and gas rights. Now, there are pore rights,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, April 25, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/business/powersource/2022/04/25/pennsylvania-hydrogen-carbon-sequestration-storage-hub-title-search-pores-energy-production-landowners-landmen/stories/202204250014
  6. [6]Douglas MacMillan et al., “Elon Musk acquires Twitter for roughly $44 billion,” Washington Post, April 25, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2022/04/25/twitter-elon-musk-deal/
  7. [7]Douglas MacMillan et al., “Elon Musk acquires Twitter for roughly $44 billion,” Washington Post, April 25, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2022/04/25/twitter-elon-musk-deal/
  8. [8]CTV, “Top Russian diplomat warns Ukraine against provoking world war,” April 26, 2022, https://www.ctvnews.ca/world/top-russian-diplomat-warns-ukraine-against-provoking-world-war-1.5876149; Chiara Giordano, “Russia effectively at war with Nato, Lavrov says as he calls western weapons ‘legitimate targets,’” Independent, April 25, 2022, https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/russia-weapons-ukraine-war-nato-b2065422.html
  9. [9]CTV, “Top Russian diplomat warns Ukraine against provoking world war,” April 26, 2022, https://www.ctvnews.ca/world/top-russian-diplomat-warns-ukraine-against-provoking-world-war-1.5876149; Roland Oliphant, “World War Three now a ‘real’ danger, Russian foreign minister Sergei Lavrov warns,” Telegraph, April 25, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2022/04/25/real-danger-third-world-war-mysterious-attacks-russia-says-sergei/
  10. [10]CTV, “Top Russian diplomat warns Ukraine against provoking world war,” April 26, 2022, https://www.ctvnews.ca/world/top-russian-diplomat-warns-ukraine-against-provoking-world-war-1.5876149
  11. [11]Chiara Giordano, “Russia effectively at war with Nato, Lavrov says as he calls western weapons ‘legitimate targets,’” Independent, April 25, 2022, https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/russia-weapons-ukraine-war-nato-b2065422.html
  12. [12]Chiara Giordano, “Russia effectively at war with Nato, Lavrov says as he calls western weapons ‘legitimate targets,’” Independent, April 25, 2022, https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/europe/russia-weapons-ukraine-war-nato-b2065422.html
  13. [13]David Benfell, “Where does Vladimir Putin stop?” Not Housebroken, April 22, 2022, https://disunitedstates.org/2022/03/04/where-does-vladimir-putin-stop/

No, India will not help with Western sanctions against Russia

Fossil fuels

Northeast

Emily Mullin, “Pittsburgh’s air quality is improving but still among worst in country,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, April 21, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/news/health/2022/04/21/pittsburgh-air-quality-2020-american-lung-association-report-particle-pollution-ozone/stories/202204210075

Stephen Caruso, “Pennsylvania officially enacts carbon pricing for power plants,” Pennsylvania Capital-Star, April 22, 2022, https://www.penncapital-star.com/blog/pennsylvania-officially-enacts-carbon-pricing-for-power-plants/


Ukraine

There is a new blog post entitled, “Tangled webs, already woven.”

Karen DeYoung and Michael Birnbaum, “U.S., allies plan for long-term isolation of Russia,” Washington Post, April 16, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2022/04/16/us-nato-isolate-russia/

Juri Rescheto, “Who’s next? Lithuanians prepare for potential Russian aggression,” Deutsche Welle, April 16, 2022, https://www.dw.com/en/whos-next-lithuanians-prepare-for-potential-russian-aggression/a-61496290

Agence France-Presse, “Russian ultimatum to Ukraine forces in Mariupol expires,” Radio Television Luxembourg, April 17, 2022, https://today.rtl.lu/news/world/a/1899789.html

Catherine Lucey, “Biden’s Claim of Russian Genocide in Ukraine Adds to Pressure Campaign,” Wall Street Journal, April 17, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/bidens-claim-of-russian-genocide-in-ukraine-adds-to-pressure-campaign-11650187802

Shayan Sardarizadeh and Leo Sands, “Ukraine war: Dramatic images appear to show sinking Russian warship Moskva,” British Broadcasting Corporation, April 18, 2022, https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-61141118

Jeanne Whalen, “Russian Orthodox leader backs war in Ukraine, divides faith,” Washington Post, April 18, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/18/russian-orthodox-church-ukraine-war/

Jonah Goldberg, “Ukraine, Russia and the moral clarity of ‘good guys’ vs. ‘bad guys’,” Los Angeles Times, April 19, 2022, https://www.latimes.com/opinion/story/2022-04-19/column-ukraine-russia-good-guys-bad-guys

Lorenzo Tondo, Luke Harding, and Isobel Koshiw, “Russia takes Donbas town but Ukrainian frontline ‘still holding,’” Guardian, April 19, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/apr/19/ukraine-war-battle-for-donbas-has-begun-russia-launches-offensive

Bloomberg, “Kremlin Insiders Alarmed Over Growing Toll of Putin’s War in Ukraine,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/putin-s-war-in-ukraine-has-russian-elites-fearing-global-isolation

Bloomberg, “Russia Test-Fires Nuclear-Capable ICBM in Warning to U.S. Allies,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/russia-stages-test-of-nuclear-missile-in-warning-to-u-s-allies

David E. Sanger, “Russia’s Missile Test Fuels U.S. Fears of an Isolated Putin,” New York Times, April 20, 2022, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/20/us/politics/russia-putin-missile-test.html

Julia Ioffe, “Mothers for Putin,” Puck News, April 21, 2022, https://puck.news/mothers-for-putin/

Nataliya Vasilyeva, “Russia seeks to capture all of southern Ukraine in major expansion of war goals,” Telegraph, April 22, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2022/04/22/russia-seeks-capture-southern-ukraine-drastic-expansion-war/

Reuters, “India wants to be friends with West but needs Russian help to defend borders, finance minister tells Bloomberg,” April 23, 2022, https://www.reuters.com/world/india/india-wants-be-friends-with-west-needs-russian-help-defend-borders-says-finmin-2022-04-23/


Moscow wants to liberate Transnistria from . . . itself?

John Fetterman

There is a new blog post entitled, “Progressive Democrats in Pennsylvania, if they actually exist, should support Malcolm Kenyatta for U.S. Senator.”

Julia Terruso and Jonathan Tamari, “5 takeaways from Thursday’s Pennsylvania Democratic Senate debate,” Philadelphia Inquirer, April 22, 2022, https://www.inquirer.com/politics/election/pa-democratic-senate-debate-fetterman-lamb-kenyatta-20220421.html-2


Cathedral of the Holy Trinity

My first instinct was to file this under Ukraine as proof that Vladimir Putin’s imperial designs extend far beyond that country, but it appears the dispute over a Jerusalem church variously named the Church of St. Alexander Nevsky or the Cathedral of the Holy Trinity considerably predates the invasion and, while it’s all very weird—as in, I’m not sure the lawyers are ever really going to sort this one out—it’s just possible Russia has a point here: Binyamin Netanyahu had agreed to return the church but the decision was overturned by an Israeli court.[1]

Michael Gryboski, “Putin demands Israel give Russia control of historic Jerusalem church,” Christian Post, April 21, 2022, https://www.christianpost.com/news/putin-demands-israel-give-russia-control-of-jerusalem-church.html


Ukraine

If anyone really believed that Vladimir Putin would settle for the Donbas,[2] it seems Russia now wants all of southern Ukraine in order to reach Transnistria, a breakaway region of Moldava that Moscow already controls but where Moscow nonetheless alleges that repression of Russian-speakers is occurring. And yes, you’ve heard this one before: It’s the same excuse Putin used to invade Ukraine.[3] It is evident that there is absolutely no requirement that Putin’s excuses make any fucking sense whatsoever.

Moldova last hit my radar as a possible target for Putin’s imperial ambition early in March.[4]

David E. Sanger, Helene Cooper, and Anton Troianovski, “Girding for New Battle, Russia Warns U.S. on Advanced Weapons for Ukraine,” New York Times, April 15, 2022, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/15/world/europe/ukraine-russia-us-weapons-warning.html

Karen DeYoung and Michael Birnbaum, “U.S., allies plan for long-term isolation of Russia,” Washington Post, April 16, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2022/04/16/us-nato-isolate-russia/

Juri Rescheto, “Who’s next? Lithuanians prepare for potential Russian aggression,” Deutsche Welle, April 16, 2022, https://www.dw.com/en/whos-next-lithuanians-prepare-for-potential-russian-aggression/a-61496290

Agence France-Presse, “Russian ultimatum to Ukraine forces in Mariupol expires,” Radio Television Luxembourg, April 17, 2022, https://today.rtl.lu/news/world/a/1899789.html

Catherine Lucey, “Biden’s Claim of Russian Genocide in Ukraine Adds to Pressure Campaign,” Wall Street Journal, April 17, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/bidens-claim-of-russian-genocide-in-ukraine-adds-to-pressure-campaign-11650187802

Shayan Sardarizadeh and Leo Sands, “Ukraine war: Dramatic images appear to show sinking Russian warship Moskva,” British Broadcasting Corporation, April 18, 2022, https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-61141118

Jeanne Whalen, “Russian Orthodox leader backs war in Ukraine, divides faith,” Washington Post, April 18, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/18/russian-orthodox-church-ukraine-war/

Lorenzo Tondo, Luke Harding, and Isobel Koshiw, “Russia takes Donbas town but Ukrainian frontline ‘still holding,’” Guardian, April 19, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/apr/19/ukraine-war-battle-for-donbas-has-begun-russia-launches-offensive

Bloomberg, “Kremlin Insiders Alarmed Over Growing Toll of Putin’s War in Ukraine,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/putin-s-war-in-ukraine-has-russian-elites-fearing-global-isolation

Bloomberg, “Russia Test-Fires Nuclear-Capable ICBM in Warning to U.S. Allies,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/russia-stages-test-of-nuclear-missile-in-warning-to-u-s-allies

David E. Sanger, “Russia’s Missile Test Fuels U.S. Fears of an Isolated Putin,” New York Times, April 20, 2022, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/20/us/politics/russia-putin-missile-test.html

Julia Ioffe, “Mothers for Putin,” Puck News, April 21, 2022, https://puck.news/mothers-for-putin/

Nataliya Vasilyeva, “Russia seeks to capture all of southern Ukraine in major expansion of war goals,” Telegraph, April 22, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2022/04/22/russia-seeks-capture-southern-ukraine-drastic-expansion-war/


  1. [1]Michael Gryboski, “Putin demands Israel give Russia control of historic Jerusalem church,” Christian Post, April 21, 2022, https://www.christianpost.com/news/putin-demands-israel-give-russia-control-of-jerusalem-church.html
  2. [2]Nebi Qena and Yuras Karmanau, “Russia shifts focus to try to grind Ukraine’s army in east,” Associated Press, March 28, 2022, https://apnews.com/article/russia-ukraine-putin-kyiv-business-europe-7386a5893a3b43bad7e438cfe45468c2
  3. [3]Nataliya Vasilyeva, “Russia seeks to capture all of southern Ukraine in major expansion of war goals,” Telegraph, April 22, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2022/04/22/russia-seeks-capture-southern-ukraine-drastic-expansion-war/
  4. [4]Jacob Judah, “Moldova braces for ‘spectrum of threats’ as Russia bids to seize south of Ukraine,” Telegraph, March 7, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2022/03/07/moldova-braced-spectrum-threats-russia-bids-seize-south-ukraine/

Violence and the folks who love it, even when they deny loving it.

Pittsburgh

Unauthorized violence

There is a new blog post entitled, “Real and imagined hazards, real and imagined causes.”

Megan Guza, “Gainey: Ending violence in Pittsburgh will take citywide approach,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 21, 2022, https://triblive.com/local/gainey-ending-violence-in-pittsburgh-will-take-citywide-approach/

Julian Routh, “Pittsburgh Mayor Ed Gainey, in wake of North Side mass shooting, says ‘we can’t give up’ in efforts to stem gun violence,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, April 21, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/news/politics-local/2022/04/21/pittsburgh-mayor-ed-gainey-north-side-mass-shooting-reaction-gun-violence-wesa-interview/stories/202204210104


Ukraine

I can’t even begin to do justice to Julia Ioffe’s latest.[1] There’s no way. Just read it.

Bojan Pancevski and Georgi Kantchev, “Russia Warns It Could Station Nuclear Forces in Europe if Finland, Sweden Join NATO,” Wall Street Journal, April 14, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/russia-warns-it-could-station-nuclear-forces-in-europe-if-finland-sweden-join-nato-11649958396

Dan Lamothe et al., “Russia says flagship missile cruiser has sunk after explosion off coast of Ukraine,” Washington Post, April 14, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/14/ukraine-russian-missile-cruiser-moskva-warship/

David E. Sanger, Helene Cooper, and Anton Troianovski, “Girding for New Battle, Russia Warns U.S. on Advanced Weapons for Ukraine,” New York Times, April 15, 2022, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/15/world/europe/ukraine-russia-us-weapons-warning.html

Karen DeYoung and Michael Birnbaum, “U.S., allies plan for long-term isolation of Russia,” Washington Post, April 16, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2022/04/16/us-nato-isolate-russia/

Juri Rescheto, “Who’s next? Lithuanians prepare for potential Russian aggression,” Deutsche Welle, April 16, 2022, https://www.dw.com/en/whos-next-lithuanians-prepare-for-potential-russian-aggression/a-61496290

Agence France-Presse, “Russian ultimatum to Ukraine forces in Mariupol expires,” Radio Television Luxembourg, April 17, 2022, https://today.rtl.lu/news/world/a/1899789.html

Catherine Lucey, “Biden’s Claim of Russian Genocide in Ukraine Adds to Pressure Campaign,” Wall Street Journal, April 17, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/bidens-claim-of-russian-genocide-in-ukraine-adds-to-pressure-campaign-11650187802

Shayan Sardarizadeh and Leo Sands, “Ukraine war: Dramatic images appear to show sinking Russian warship Moskva,” British Broadcasting Corporation, April 18, 2022, https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-61141118

Jeanne Whalen, “Russian Orthodox leader backs war in Ukraine, divides faith,” Washington Post, April 18, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/18/russian-orthodox-church-ukraine-war/

Lorenzo Tondo, Luke Harding, and Isobel Koshiw, “Russia takes Donbas town but Ukrainian frontline ‘still holding,’” Guardian, April 19, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/apr/19/ukraine-war-battle-for-donbas-has-begun-russia-launches-offensive

Bloomberg, “Kremlin Insiders Alarmed Over Growing Toll of Putin’s War in Ukraine,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/putin-s-war-in-ukraine-has-russian-elites-fearing-global-isolation

Bloomberg, “Russia Test-Fires Nuclear-Capable ICBM in Warning to U.S. Allies,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/russia-stages-test-of-nuclear-missile-in-warning-to-u-s-allies

David E. Sanger, “Russia’s Missile Test Fuels U.S. Fears of an Isolated Putin,” New York Times, April 20, 2022, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/20/us/politics/russia-putin-missile-test.html

Julia Ioffe, “Mothers for Putin,” Puck News, April 21, 2022, https://puck.news/mothers-for-putin/


  1. [1]Julia Ioffe, “Mothers for Putin,” Puck News, April 21, 2022, https://puck.news/mothers-for-putin/

Upping the nuclear ante

Fossil fuels

Northeast

Emily Mullin, “Pittsburgh’s air quality is improving but still among worst in country,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, April 21, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/news/health/2022/04/21/pittsburgh-air-quality-2020-american-lung-association-report-particle-pollution-ozone/stories/202204210075


Twitter

Cara Lombardo and Will Feuer, “Elon Musk Says He Has Commitments for $46.5 Billion in Financing for Twitter Deal,” Wall Street Journal, April 21, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/elon-musk-says-he-has-commitments-for-46-5-billion-in-financing-for-twitter-deal-11650549097


John Fetterman

Daniel Strauss, “Is Conor Lamb Collapsing Against John Fetterman in Pennsylvania?” New Republic, April 21, 2022, https://newrepublic.com/article/166164/conor-lamb-collapsing-john-fetterman-pennsylvania


Ukraine

Vladimir Putin’s missile test[1] is a blatant effort to further[2] rattle the nuclear sabre.[3]

In fact, the [the nuclear-capable Sarmat] missile, if deployed, would add only marginally to Russia’s capabilities. But the launch was about timing and symbolism: It came amid the recent public warnings, including by Mr. Burns, that there was a small but growing chance that Mr. Putin might turn to chemical weapons attacks, or even a demonstration nuclear detonation.[4]

So, on the one hand, we have Putin threatening the use of nuclear weapons if Russia feels its existence is threatened,[5] which is also his rationale for invading Ukraine in the first place.[6] And we have that while he has invaded Ukraine, he has not yet used nuclear weapons.

We also have a history in which Ronald Reagan intentionally appeared to be crazy to gain negotiating leverage with the Soviet Union,[7] a history Putin is surely aware of. But even if, as seems reasonable to believe, Putin is applying that precedent here, we cannot infer, at least from this, one way or another whether Putin will, in the end, use nuclear weapons. We can only say what the Russians themselves say: They have not ruled this out.[8]

Speaking at the Georgia Institute of Technology last week, Mr. [William J.] Burns, [Central Intelligence Agency director and] a former American ambassador to Moscow, said Mr. [Vladimir] Putin was “an apostle of payback” who believes the West “took advantage of Russia’s moment of historical weakness in the 1990s.” He added that Mr. Putin’s small circle of advisers would hesitate to “question his judgment or his stubborn, almost mystical belief that his destiny is to restore Russia’s sphere of influence.”[9]

We can argue about what, precisely, that means. But if we’re going to call a belief “almost mystical,” surely it means more than this:

That means getting the West to back away from Russia’s borders. And it means stopping NATO’s expansion, which may soon spread to Finland and Sweden, where a senior American defense official was visiting this week to discuss possible accession to the Western alliance.[10]

Rather, it much more likely means this (figure 1):

Fig. 1. Historic Russian empire, from the New York Times, possibly March 6, 2014, fair use.[11]

Certainly, such a “historic mission”[12] must entail more than the Donbas,[13] and, given the underwhelming performance of Russian conventional forces to date,[14] he must turn to unconventional means, including the nuclear.[15]

Bojan Pancevski and Georgi Kantchev, “Russia Warns It Could Station Nuclear Forces in Europe if Finland, Sweden Join NATO,” Wall Street Journal, April 14, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/russia-warns-it-could-station-nuclear-forces-in-europe-if-finland-sweden-join-nato-11649958396

Dan Lamothe et al., “Russia says flagship missile cruiser has sunk after explosion off coast of Ukraine,” Washington Post, April 14, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/14/ukraine-russian-missile-cruiser-moskva-warship/

David E. Sanger, Helene Cooper, and Anton Troianovski, “Girding for New Battle, Russia Warns U.S. on Advanced Weapons for Ukraine,” New York Times, April 15, 2022, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/15/world/europe/ukraine-russia-us-weapons-warning.html

Karen DeYoung and Michael Birnbaum, “U.S., allies plan for long-term isolation of Russia,” Washington Post, April 16, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2022/04/16/us-nato-isolate-russia/

Juri Rescheto, “Who’s next? Lithuanians prepare for potential Russian aggression,” Deutsche Welle, April 16, 2022, https://www.dw.com/en/whos-next-lithuanians-prepare-for-potential-russian-aggression/a-61496290

Agence France-Presse, “Russian ultimatum to Ukraine forces in Mariupol expires,” Radio Television Luxembourg, April 17, 2022, https://today.rtl.lu/news/world/a/1899789.html

Catherine Lucey, “Biden’s Claim of Russian Genocide in Ukraine Adds to Pressure Campaign,” Wall Street Journal, April 17, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/bidens-claim-of-russian-genocide-in-ukraine-adds-to-pressure-campaign-11650187802

Shayan Sardarizadeh and Leo Sands, “Ukraine war: Dramatic images appear to show sinking Russian warship Moskva,” British Broadcasting Corporation, April 18, 2022, https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-61141118

Jeanne Whalen, “Russian Orthodox leader backs war in Ukraine, divides faith,” Washington Post, April 18, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/18/russian-orthodox-church-ukraine-war/

Lorenzo Tondo, Luke Harding, and Isobel Koshiw, “Russia takes Donbas town but Ukrainian frontline ‘still holding,’” Guardian, April 19, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/apr/19/ukraine-war-battle-for-donbas-has-begun-russia-launches-offensive

Bloomberg, “Kremlin Insiders Alarmed Over Growing Toll of Putin’s War in Ukraine,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/putin-s-war-in-ukraine-has-russian-elites-fearing-global-isolation

Bloomberg, “Russia Test-Fires Nuclear-Capable ICBM in Warning to U.S. Allies,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/russia-stages-test-of-nuclear-missile-in-warning-to-u-s-allies

David E. Sanger, “Russia’s Missile Test Fuels U.S. Fears of an Isolated Putin,” New York Times, April 20, 2022, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/20/us/politics/russia-putin-missile-test.html


  1. [1]Bloomberg, “Russia Test-Fires Nuclear-Capable ICBM in Warning to U.S. Allies,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/russia-stages-test-of-nuclear-missile-in-warning-to-u-s-allies
  2. [2]David E. Sanger, “Russia’s Missile Test Fuels U.S. Fears of an Isolated Putin,” New York Times, April 20, 2022, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/20/us/politics/russia-putin-missile-test.html
  3. [3]Daniel Boffey, “Russia reasserts right to use nuclear weapons in Ukraine,” Guardian, March 26, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/mar/26/russia-reasserts-right-to-use-nuclear-weapons-in-ukraine-putin; Yuras Karmanau, “Putin puts nuclear forces on high alert, escalating tensions,” Associated Press, February 27, 2022, https://apnews.com/article/russia-ukraine-kyiv-business-europe-moscow-2e4e1cf784f22b6afbe5a2f936725550; Luke McGee and Claire Calzonetti, “Putin spokesman refuses to rule out use of nuclear weapons if Russia faced an ‘existential threat,’” Cable News Network, March 22, 2022, https://www.cnn.com/2022/03/22/europe/amanpour-peskov-interview-ukraine-intl/index.html; Bojan Pancevski and Georgi Kantchev, “Russia Warns It Could Station Nuclear Forces in Europe if Finland, Sweden Join NATO,” Wall Street Journal, April 14, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/russia-warns-it-could-station-nuclear-forces-in-europe-if-finland-sweden-join-nato-11649958396; Jordan Michael Smith, “Would Putin Really Go Nuclear? Well …,” New Republic, March 7, 2022, https://newrepublic.com/article/165634/putin-nuclear-weapons-ukraine-us-response; Adam Taylor, “War in Ukraine enters a new phase, even more unpredictable and dangerous than the last,” Washington Post, March 1, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com//world/2022/03/01/ukraine-putin-nuclear-sanctions/; Adam Taylor and William Neff, “Why the world is so worried about Russia’s ‘tactical’ nuclear weapons,” Washington Post, March 29, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/03/29/why-world-is-so-worried-about-russias-tactical-nuclear-weapons/; Robin Wright, “What Does Putin’s Nuclear Sabre Rattling Mean?” New Yorker, March 1, 2022, https://www.newyorker.com/news/daily-comment/what-does-putins-nuclear-sabre-rattling-mean
  4. [4]David E. Sanger, “Russia’s Missile Test Fuels U.S. Fears of an Isolated Putin,” New York Times, April 20, 2022, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/20/us/politics/russia-putin-missile-test.html
  5. [5]Luke McGee and Claire Calzonetti, “Putin spokesman refuses to rule out use of nuclear weapons if Russia faced an ‘existential threat,’” Cable News Network, March 22, 2022, https://www.cnn.com/2022/03/22/europe/amanpour-peskov-interview-ukraine-intl/index.html
  6. [6]Anne Applebaum, “The U.S. Is Naive About Russia. Ukraine Can’t Afford to Be,” Atlantic, January 3, 2022, https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2022/01/ukraine-russia-kyiv-putin-bluff/621145/; Julia Ioffe, “Putin’s ‘Nightmare’ Threat to Europe,” Puck News, December 6, 2021, https://puck.news/putins-nightmare-threat-to-europe/; Eugene Rumer and Andrew S. Weiss, “Ukraine: Putin’s Unfinished Business,” Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, November 12, 2021, https://carnegieendowment.org/2021/11/12/ukraine-putin-s-unfinished-business-pub-85771
  7. [7]Lou Cannon, President Reagan: The Role of a Lifetime (New York: PublicAffairs, 2000).
  8. [8]Luke McGee and Claire Calzonetti, “Putin spokesman refuses to rule out use of nuclear weapons if Russia faced an ‘existential threat,’” Cable News Network, March 22, 2022, https://www.cnn.com/2022/03/22/europe/amanpour-peskov-interview-ukraine-intl/index.html
  9. [9]David E. Sanger, “Russia’s Missile Test Fuels U.S. Fears of an Isolated Putin,” New York Times, April 20, 2022, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/20/us/politics/russia-putin-missile-test.html
  10. [10]David E. Sanger, “Russia’s Missile Test Fuels U.S. Fears of an Isolated Putin,” New York Times, April 20, 2022, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/20/us/politics/russia-putin-missile-test.html
  11. [11]New York Times, “Ukraine Crisis in Maps,” n.d., http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2014/02/27/world/europe/ukraine-divisions-crimea.html
  12. [12]Bloomberg, “Kremlin Insiders Alarmed Over Growing Toll of Putin’s War in Ukraine,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/putin-s-war-in-ukraine-has-russian-elites-fearing-global-isolation
  13. [13]David Benfell, “Where does Vladimir Putin stop?” Not Housebroken, April 20, 2022, https://disunitedstates.org/2022/03/04/where-does-vladimir-putin-stop/
  14. [14]William Booth, Robyn Dixon, and David L. Stern, “Russian generals are getting killed at an extraordinary rate,” Washington Post, March 26, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/03/26/ukraine-russan-generals-dead/; Larisa Brown, Charlie Parker, and Richard Spencer, “Ukraine forces ‘counter-attack’ as Russia loses estimated 7,000 troops and 230 tanks,” Times, March 18, 2022, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/ukraine-crisis-world-war-three-may-have-already-started-warns-zelensky-f5fs72vq5; Larisa Brown and Richard Spencer, “Struggling Russians ‘plant mines’ and dig in for a long war,” Times, March 21, 2022, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/retroville-mall-a-symbol-of-new-kyiv-is-destroyed-by-cruise-missile-0znsr9zc9; Robert Burns, “Russia’s failure to take down Kyiv was a defeat for the ages,” Associated Press, April 6, 2022, https://apnews.com/article/russia-ukraine-war-battle-for-kyiv-dc559574ce9f6683668fa221af2d5340; Helene Cooper, Julian E. Barnes, and Eric Schmitt, “As Russian Troop Deaths Climb, Morale Becomes an Issue, Officials Say,” New York Times, March 16, 2022, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/03/16/us/politics/russia-troop-deaths.html; Mark Galeotti, “How does Putin extract himself from this nightmare of his own making?” Times, March 5, 2022, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/how-does-putin-extract-himself-from-this-nightmare-of-his-own-making-v2ktvw08g; Michael R. Gordon and Alex Leary, “Russia, Failing to Achieve Early Victory in Ukraine, Is Seen Shifting to ‘Plan B,’” Wall Street Journal, March 20, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/russia-failing-to-achieve-early-victory-in-ukraine-is-seen-shifting-to-plan-b-11647824374; Jon Henley, “Russia laments ‘tragedy’ of troop deaths as Zelenskiy warns of atrocities in Borodyanka,” Guardian, April 8, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/apr/08/russia-laments-tragedy-of-troop-deaths-as-zelenskiy-warns-of-atrocities-in-borodyanka; Jon Henley, Pjotr Sauer, and Shaun Walker, “‘Ukrainians are not naive’: Zelenskiy voices doubt on Russian military withdrawals,” Guardian, March 29, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/mar/29/ukraine-russia-peace-talks-istanbul-war-kyiv; Richard Kemp, “The Russian army has run out of time,” Telegraph, March 22, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/2022/03/22/russian-army-has-run-time/; Dan Lamothe, Alex Horton, and Karoun Demirjian, “Ukraine’s military adapts tactics after enduring Russia’s initial invasion,” Washington Post, March 5, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2022/03/05/ukraine-military-strategy/; Eric Levitz, “Putin’s War Looks Increasingly Insane,” New York, March 4, 2022, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2022/03/putins-war-looks-increasingly-insane.html; Matthew Luxmoore, “Russia Refocuses on Ukraine’s East After Month of Heavy Losses,” Wall Street Journal, March 25, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/russia-refocuses-on-ukraines-east-after-month-of-heavy-losses-11648243627; James Mackenzie, Natalia Zinets, and Oleksandr Kozhukhar, “Russia getting bogged down in Ukraine, Western nations say,” Reuters, March 17, 2022, https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/shells-hit-theatre-sheltering-ukraine-civilians-biden-calls-putin-war-criminal-2022-03-17/; Justin McCurry, Samantha Lock, and Luke Harding, “Russia targeting cities as strength of Ukraine’s resistance ‘continues to surprise’, UK says,” Guardian, March 6, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/mar/06/biden-and-zelenskiy-discuss-more-aid-for-ukraine-as-russian-attacks-intensify; Ashley Parker et al., “‘No off-ramps’: U.S. and European officials don’t see a clear endgame in Ukraine,” Washington Post, March 11, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/03/10/ukraine-end-game/; Nebi Qena and Yuras Karmanau, “Russia shifts focus to try to grind Ukraine’s army in east,” Associated Press, March 28, 2022, https://apnews.com/article/russia-ukraine-putin-kyiv-business-europe-7386a5893a3b43bad7e438cfe45468c2; David Remnick, “The Weakness of the Despot,” New Yorker, March 11, 2022, https://www.newyorker.com/news/q-and-a/stephen-kotkin-putin-russia-ukraine-stalin; Dan Sabbagh, “Is an outright Russian military victory in Ukraine possible?” Guardian, March 17, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/mar/17/is-an-outright-russian-military-victory-in-ukraine-possible; Shayan Sardarizadeh and Leo Sands, “Ukraine war: Dramatic images appear to show sinking Russian warship Moskva,” British Broadcasting Corporation, April 18, 2022, https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-61141118; Liz Sly and Max Bearak, “Russia pulls back from battered Kyiv region in major shift of war to east,” Washington Post, April 2, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/02/russia-ukraine-east/; Liz Sly and Dan Lamothe, “Russia’s war for Ukraine could be headed toward stalemate,” Washington Post, March 20, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/03/20/russia-ukraine-military-offensive/; Lorenzo Tondo, Luke Harding, and Isobel Koshiw, “Russia takes Donbas town but Ukrainian frontline ‘still holding,’” Guardian, April 19, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/apr/19/ukraine-war-battle-for-donbas-has-begun-russia-launches-offensive
  15. [15]David Benfell, “Nuclear survival,” Not Housebroken, April 21, 2022, https://disunitedstates.org/2022/03/13/nuclear-survival/

Does the world’s richest adolescent really want Twitter?

Gig economy (neoliberal wet dream)

Bezzle

Francesca Maglione, “Trump Lawyer Sticks Uber With $91 Million Arbitration Bill for ‘Reverse Bias’ Claims,” Bloomberg, April 19, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-19/trump-lawyer-sticks-uber-with-astronomical-arbitration-bill


Twitter

William Cohan thinks Elon Musk can succeed in buying Twitter. That is, if he really wants it.[1] And this, I gather, is a significant part of the problem. He might have a man’s body, but his mind is really still that of an unpredictable adolescent, and buying Twitter doesn’t make it more likely he’ll get laid (yes, I know he’s married or something like married), so nobody really knows what he wants.

William D. Cohan, “How Elon Can Get That $40B,” Puck News, April 20, 2022, https://puck.news/how-elon-can-get-that-40b/


COVID-19 Pandemic

Doctors and charlatans

I am desperately tired of COVID-19 mitigation measures. Desperately. But my exhaustion is not a proper rationale for policy.

I think the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has erred in failing to separate the science from the politics in its pronouncements.[2] And it simply is not yet safe to return to ‘normal.’ Too many people remain vulnerable for a number of reasons—the return to ‘normal’ places them at undue risk.

But worse than that, the failure to fight that judge’s ruling striking down the CDC rule requiring masks on public transportation[3] would have been a political capitulation to the worst forces in our society.

That said, I am not optimistic about the prospects for a now-promised appeal.[4] As I understand it, the case goes to what I understand to be the conservative-leaning[5] 11th Circuit.[6] The prospects hardly seem brighter at the U.S. Supreme Court.

I think this is a lost cause.

Michael Balsamo, “Justice Department to appeal order voiding travel mask mandate,” Los Angeles Times, April 20, 2022, https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2022-04-20/justice-dept-to-appeal-order-voiding-travel-mask-mandate


Ukraine

A coup[7] or popular uprising[8] remain wildly improbable.[9] The sense I have is that those expressing doubts, privately, for fear of repercussions,[10] are not among the hard-liners Vladimir Putin has surrounded himself with.[11] They are not in a position to seize power.

Almost eight weeks after Vladimir Putin sent troops into Ukraine, with military losses mounting and Russia facing unprecedented international isolation, a small but growing number of senior Kremlin insiders are quietly questioning his decision to go to war. . . .

So far, these people see no chance the Russian president will change course and no prospect of any challenge to him at home. More and more reliant on a narrowing circle of hardline advisers, Putin has dismissed attempts by other officials to warn him of the crippling economic and political cost, they said.

Some said they increasingly share the fear voiced by U.S. intelligence officials that Putin could turn to a limited use of nuclear weapons if faced with failure in a campaign he views as his historic mission. . . .

The president remains confident that the public is behind him, with Russians ready to endure years of sacrifice for his vision of national greatness, they said. With the help of tough capital controls, the ruble has recovered most of its initial losses and while inflation has spiked, economic disruption remains relatively limited so far.[12]

The Bloomberg article[13] seems to me a little inconsistent. If we speak of a “historic mission,” can this be limited to Ukraine, let alone the Donbas region? Yet, we speak of the Donbas now as if it alone is Putin’s goal. Count me very much among skeptics who doubt this is the case.[14]

Bojan Pancevski and Georgi Kantchev, “Russia Warns It Could Station Nuclear Forces in Europe if Finland, Sweden Join NATO,” Wall Street Journal, April 14, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/russia-warns-it-could-station-nuclear-forces-in-europe-if-finland-sweden-join-nato-11649958396

Dan Lamothe et al., “Russia says flagship missile cruiser has sunk after explosion off coast of Ukraine,” Washington Post, April 14, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/14/ukraine-russian-missile-cruiser-moskva-warship/

David E. Sanger, Helene Cooper, and Anton Troianovski, “Girding for New Battle, Russia Warns U.S. on Advanced Weapons for Ukraine,” New York Times, April 15, 2022, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/04/15/world/europe/ukraine-russia-us-weapons-warning.html

Karen DeYoung and Michael Birnbaum, “U.S., allies plan for long-term isolation of Russia,” Washington Post, April 16, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2022/04/16/us-nato-isolate-russia/

Juri Rescheto, “Who’s next? Lithuanians prepare for potential Russian aggression,” Deutsche Welle, April 16, 2022, https://www.dw.com/en/whos-next-lithuanians-prepare-for-potential-russian-aggression/a-61496290

Agence France-Presse, “Russian ultimatum to Ukraine forces in Mariupol expires,” Radio Television Luxembourg, April 17, 2022, https://today.rtl.lu/news/world/a/1899789.html

Catherine Lucey, “Biden’s Claim of Russian Genocide in Ukraine Adds to Pressure Campaign,” Wall Street Journal, April 17, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/bidens-claim-of-russian-genocide-in-ukraine-adds-to-pressure-campaign-11650187802

Shayan Sardarizadeh and Leo Sands, “Ukraine war: Dramatic images appear to show sinking Russian warship Moskva,” British Broadcasting Corporation, April 18, 2022, https://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-61141118

Jeanne Whalen, “Russian Orthodox leader backs war in Ukraine, divides faith,” Washington Post, April 18, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2022/04/18/russian-orthodox-church-ukraine-war/

Lorenzo Tondo, Luke Harding, and Isobel Koshiw, “Russia takes Donbas town but Ukrainian frontline ‘still holding,’” Guardian, April 19, 2022, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2022/apr/19/ukraine-war-battle-for-donbas-has-begun-russia-launches-offensive

Bloomberg, “Kremlin Insiders Alarmed Over Growing Toll of Putin’s War in Ukraine,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/putin-s-war-in-ukraine-has-russian-elites-fearing-global-isolation

Bloomberg, “Russia Test-Fires Nuclear-Capable ICBM in Warning to U.S. Allies,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/russia-stages-test-of-nuclear-missile-in-warning-to-u-s-allies


  1. [1]William D. Cohan, “How Elon Can Get That $40B,” Puck News, April 20, 2022, https://puck.news/how-elon-can-get-that-40b/
  2. [2]David Benfell, “Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Doctors need to act like doctors,” Not Housebroken, February 6, 2022, https://disunitedstates.org/2021/12/30/centers-for-disease-control-and-prevention-doctors-need-to-act-like-doctors/
  3. [3]Tierney Sneed, “CDC mask mandate for travelers no longer in effect following judge’s ruling, official says,” Cable News Network, April 18, 2022, https://www.cnn.com/2022/04/18/politics/cdc-mask-mandate-ruling/index.html
  4. [4]Michael Balsamo, “Justice Department to appeal order voiding travel mask mandate,” Los Angeles Times, April 20, 2022, https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2022-04-20/justice-dept-to-appeal-order-voiding-travel-mask-mandate
  5. [5]Bloomberg Law, “Trump Pick Confirmed, Boosts 11th Cir. Conservative Lean (1),” February 11, 2020, https://news.bloomberglaw.com/us-law-week/trump-pick-confirmed-boosting-11th-circuits-conservative-lean
  6. [6]United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, “About the Court,” n.d., https://www.ca11.uscourts.gov/about-court
  7. [7]Mark Galeotti, “How does Putin extract himself from this nightmare of his own making?” Times, March 5, 2022, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/how-does-putin-extract-himself-from-this-nightmare-of-his-own-making-v2ktvw08g; Julia Ioffe, “Europe’s 9/11,” Puck News, March 3, 2022, https://puck.news/europes-9-11/; Paul Nuki, “Why Vladimir Putin may stay in power longer than we think,” Telegraph, March 8, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2022/03/08/vladimir-putin-may-stay-power-longer-think/
  8. [8]Julia Ioffe, “Inside Russia’s Media Black Hole,” Puck News, March 10, 2022, https://puck.news/inside-russias-media-black-hole/; Lisa McIntosh Sundstrom, “Will Russians Toss Their Leader?” Tyee, March 25, 2022, https://thetyee.ca/Analysis/2022/03/25/Will-Russians-Toss-Their-Leader/; Joshua Yaffa, “Why Do So Many Russians Say They Support the War in Ukraine?” New Yorker, March 29, 2022, https://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/why-do-so-many-russians-say-they-support-the-war-in-ukraine
  9. [9]Bloomberg, “Kremlin Insiders Alarmed Over Growing Toll of Putin’s War in Ukraine,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/putin-s-war-in-ukraine-has-russian-elites-fearing-global-isolation
  10. [10]Bloomberg, “Kremlin Insiders Alarmed Over Growing Toll of Putin’s War in Ukraine,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/putin-s-war-in-ukraine-has-russian-elites-fearing-global-isolation
  11. [11]Bloomberg, “Kremlin Insiders Alarmed Over Growing Toll of Putin’s War in Ukraine,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/putin-s-war-in-ukraine-has-russian-elites-fearing-global-isolation; Mark Galeotti, “How does Putin extract himself from this nightmare of his own making?” Times, March 5, 2022, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/how-does-putin-extract-himself-from-this-nightmare-of-his-own-making-v2ktvw08g; Julia Ioffe, “Europe’s 9/11,” Puck News, March 3, 2022, https://puck.news/europes-9-11/; Paul Nuki, “Why Vladimir Putin may stay in power longer than we think,” Telegraph, March 8, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2022/03/08/vladimir-putin-may-stay-power-longer-think/
  12. [12]Bloomberg, “Kremlin Insiders Alarmed Over Growing Toll of Putin’s War in Ukraine,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/putin-s-war-in-ukraine-has-russian-elites-fearing-global-isolation
  13. [13]Bloomberg, “Kremlin Insiders Alarmed Over Growing Toll of Putin’s War in Ukraine,” April 20, 2022, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2022-04-20/putin-s-war-in-ukraine-has-russian-elites-fearing-global-isolation
  14. [14]David Benfell, “Where does Vladimir Putin stop?” Not Housebroken, April 17, 2022, https://disunitedstates.org/2022/03/04/where-does-vladimir-putin-stop/

Gun nuttery reigns in Pennsylvania and, therefore, in Pittsburgh

COVID-19 Pandemic

Doctors and charlatans

This morning, I learned[1] that Uber had dropped the mask requirement for riders and drivers[2] in response to a federal court ruling striking down the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention rule requiring masks on public transportation.[3] I had not learned what Lyft’s response would be, but, quite unsurprisingly, they have also dropped the rule.[4] The front passenger seat has now also been reopened for passenger use on both services.[5]

In response to a question on Twitter,[6] drivers had no say either in the original imposition of these rules or in their withdrawal. The gig economy is a neoliberal’s wet dream. Its very point is an utterly disempowered and desperate work force.

Tierney Sneed, “CDC mask mandate for travelers no longer in effect following judge’s ruling, official says,” Cable News Network, April 18, 2022, https://www.cnn.com/2022/04/18/politics/cdc-mask-mandate-ruling/index.html

Omar Abdel-Baqui, “Uber Drops Mask Requirement After Judge Voids Public Transportation Mandate,” Wall Street Journal, April 19, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/uber-drops-mask-requirement-after-judge-voids-public-transportation-mandate-11650369863

Sarah Alessandrini, “Uber and Lyft drop mask requirements for drivers, passengers,” CNBC, April 19, 2022, https://www.cnbc.com/2022/04/19/uber-drops-mask-requirements-passengers.html

Lyft, “Update to Lyft’s Health Safety Guidelines,” April 19, 2022, https://www.lyft.com/blog/posts/update-to-lyfts-health-safety-guidelines


Student loans

The Biden administration’s latest move on student loan debt barely nibbles around the edges, with fixes to how payments are counted toward eventual forgiveness and an amnesty on previous defaults, removing those defaults from credit records, and allowing borrowers to get back on track with payments.[7] None of what I see described here appears to make any difference in my situation: I have not defaulted and I consolidated my loans, in part to include loans that wouldn’t otherwise be eligible for income-based repayment, into a loan that would be eligible for income-based repayment.

Gabriel T. Rubin, “Biden Aims to Expand Access to Student-Loan Debt Forgiveness for Millions of People,” Wall Street Journal, April 19, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/biden-aims-to-expand-access-to-student-loan-debt-forgiveness-for-millions-of-people-11650391396


Pittsburgh

Unauthorized violence

Pennsylvania courts have struck down Pittsburgh’s attempts to regulate guns[8] in the wake of the Tree of Life Synagogue shooting[9] and efforts to pass gun control legislation in the Trumpist state legislature have languished.[10] Now, Pittsburgh politicians want the state legislature to do something, but really, nothing has changed there[11] as instead we get bills to remove requirements for a permit to carry a concealed weapon[12] and allow people to carry weapons during an “emergency.”[13]

Jesse Bunch and Andrew Goldstein, “In the Hill District, residents grapple with recent spike in gun violence,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, April 16, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/news/crime-courts/2022/04/16/pittsburgh-hill-district-gun-violence-shootings/stories/202204140127

Julia Felton, “Ed Gainey marks 100 days as Pittsburgh’s mayor, learns to ‘fall in love with adversity,’” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 16, 2022, https://triblive.com/local/ed-gainey-marks-100-days-as-pittsburghs-mayor-learns-to-fall-in-love-with-adversity/

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “One man dead after Marshall-Shadeland shooting,” April 16, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/news/crime-courts/2022/04/16/pittsburgh-fatal-shooting-marshall-shadeland-police-mcclure/stories/202204160041

Megan Guza and Ryan Deto, “Multiple shooters suspected in ‘war scene’ that killed 2, injured 8 on Pittsburgh’s North Side,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 17, 2022, https://triblive.com/local/police-11-shot-2-dead-on-pittsburghs-north-side/

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “At least 11 shot, 2 dead in North Side shooting, police say,” April 17, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/news/crime-courts/2022/04/17/pittsburgh-shooting-north-side-east-allegheny-update-public-safety/stories/202204170168

Brian C. Rittmeyer, “Pittsburgh police investigating shootout at South Side Flats clothing store,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 17, 2022, https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-police-investigating-shootout-at-south-side-flats-clothing-store/

Mick Stinelli, Julian Routh, and Ed Blazina, “North Side residents describe chaos at Airbnb before mass shooting as concerns mount over Pittsburgh gun violence,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, April 17, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/local/city/2022/04/17/pittsburgh-mass-shooting-reactions-north-side-residents-east-allegheny-suismon-street-madison-avenue/stories/202204170174

Ed Blazina, “Pittsburgh officials finding that barring parties at Airbnb rentals is a difficult task, despite strict ban,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, April 18, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/news/crime-courts/2022/04/18/airbnb-east-allegheny-mass-shooting-two-dead-unapproved-party/stories/202204170181

Julia Felton, “Pittsburgh City Council looks to regulate Airbnb, other short-term rentals after deadly weekend shooting,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, April 18, 2022, https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-city-council-looks-to-regulate-airbnb-other-short-term-rentals-after-deadly-weekend-shooting/

Gillian McGoldrick, “After North Side shooting, Pittsburgh’s lawmakers want action on gun control measures, Airbnb regulations,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, April 19, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/news/politics-state/2022/04/19/after-north-side-airbnb-shooting-pittsburgh-s-lawmakers-advocate/stories/202204190103


  1. [1]David Benfell, “The expendable worker,” Not Housebroken, April 19, 2022, https://disunitedstates.org/2020/07/05/the-expendable-worker/
  2. [2]Omar Abdel-Baqui, “Uber Drops Mask Requirement After Judge Voids Public Transportation Mandate,” Wall Street Journal, April 19, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/uber-drops-mask-requirement-after-judge-voids-public-transportation-mandate-11650369863; Sarah Alessandrini, “Uber and Lyft drop mask requirements for drivers, passengers,” CNBC, April 19, 2022, https://www.cnbc.com/2022/04/19/uber-drops-mask-requirements-passengers.html; Uber, “Our commitment to safety,” April 19, 2022, https://www.uber.com/us/en/safety/?stream=top
  3. [3]Tierney Sneed, “CDC mask mandate for travelers no longer in effect following judge’s ruling, official says,” Cable News Network, April 18, 2022, https://www.cnn.com/2022/04/18/politics/cdc-mask-mandate-ruling/index.html
  4. [4]Sarah Alessandrini, “Uber and Lyft drop mask requirements for drivers, passengers,” CNBC, April 19, 2022, https://www.cnbc.com/2022/04/19/uber-drops-mask-requirements-passengers.html; Lyft, “Update to Lyft’s Health Safety Guidelines,” April 19, 2022, https://www.lyft.com/blog/posts/update-to-lyfts-health-safety-guidelines
  5. [5]Lyft, “Update to Lyft’s Health Safety Guidelines,” April 19, 2022, https://www.lyft.com/blog/posts/update-to-lyfts-health-safety-guidelines; Uber, “Our commitment to safety,” April 19, 2022, https://www.uber.com/us/en/safety/?stream=top
  6. [6]indiacarlessⓋ 🇺🇦 [pseud.], “Shouldn’t the drivers have a say in this?
    @n4rky,” Twitter, April 19, 2022, https://twitter.com/indiacarless/status/1516472267265429513
  7. [7]Gabriel T. Rubin, “Biden Aims to Expand Access to Student-Loan Debt Forgiveness for Millions of People,” Wall Street Journal, April 19, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/biden-aims-to-expand-access-to-student-loan-debt-forgiveness-for-millions-of-people-11650391396
  8. [8]Bob Bauder, “Judge strikes down Pittsburgh’s controversial gun bills,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 29, 2019, https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-allegheny/judge-strikes-down-pittsburghs-controversial-gun-bills/
  9. [9]Campbell Robertson, Christopher Mele, and Sabrina Tavernise, “11 Killed in Synagogue Massacre; Suspect Charged With 29 Counts,” New York Times, October 27, 2018, https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/27/us/active-shooter-pittsburgh-synagogue-shooting.html
  10. [10]Bob Bauder, “Pittsburgh mayor Peduto, state lawmakers call for vote on Pa. gun bills,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, August 9, 2019, https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-allegheny/peduto-state-lawmakers-call-for-vote-on-gun-bills/
  11. [11]Gillian McGoldrick, “After North Side shooting, Pittsburgh’s lawmakers want action on gun control measures, Airbnb regulations,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, April 19, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/news/politics-state/2022/04/19/after-north-side-airbnb-shooting-pittsburgh-s-lawmakers-advocate/stories/202204190103
  12. [12]Jon Delano, “Lawrence Co. Lawmaker Wants To Abolish Concealed Carry Gun Permits,” KDKA-TV, May 7, 2019, https://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2019/05/07/aaron-bernstine-abolish-pennsylvania-concealed-carry-law/
  13. [13]Associated Press, “Gov. Tom Wolf Vetoes Bills On Firearms During Emergencies And Gas Drilling Regulation,” KDKA-TV, November 26, 2020, https://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2020/11/26/wolf-vetoes-three-bills/; Stephen Caruso, “Pro 2nd Amendment lawmakers want to let you carry a gun during an emergency,” Pennsylvania Capital-Star, July 7, 2020, https://www.penncapital-star.com/government-politics/pro-2nd-amendment-lawmakers-want-to-let-you-carry-a-gun-during-an-emergency/