Who will pay to fix the damn roads?

Ukraine

Russia’s defence ministry said it had decided to withdraw from the outcrop [Snake Island] as a “gesture of goodwill” to show Moscow was not obstructing U.N. efforts to open a humanitarian corridor allowing grains to be shipped from Ukraine.

Ukraine said it had driven the Russian forces out after a massive artillery and assault overnight.[1]

To believe the Russian account is to believe that Vladimir Putin suddenly cares about what the rest of the world thinks of him or about the rest of the world at all except as potential additions to his empire.[2] Having started and persisted in a war on a pretext that almost no one outside of Russia believes, that’s awfully hard to swallow.

I am, rather, remembering he Russian tradition of vranyo, which Dominic Nicholls described for the Telegraph as

the peculiar arrangement of Russian social and public discourse that says, ‘I’m lying to you. You know I’m lying to you and I know that you know that I’m lying to you. However, I’m going to carry on lying and you are expected to nod along and accept every word I say’.[3]

So I believe the Ukrainians or, at least, that their version is likely closer to the truth. Still, it is interesting and, I think, perhaps something to watch that Moscow is even pretending a “gesture of goodwill.”

Max Hunder and Tom Balmforth, “Russia abandons Snake Island in victory for Ukraine,” Reuters, June 30, 2022, https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/russia-steps-up-attacks-ukraine-after-landmark-nato-summit-2022-06-30/


Gilead

Abortion

Ryan Deto, “Supreme Court abortion decision places higher stakes on Pa. election, experts say,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, June 24, 2022, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/supreme-court-abortion-decision-places-higher-stakes-on-pa-election-experts-say/

Matt Ford, “Clarence Thomas Will Wipe Out Marriage Equality and Contraception Next,” New Republic, June 24, 2022, https://newrepublic.com/article/166891/thomas-roe-marriage-equality-contraception

Brent Kendall and Jess Bravin, “Supreme Court Overturns Roe v. Wade, Eliminates Constitutional Right to Abortion,” Wall Street Journal, June 24, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/supreme-court-overturns-roe-v-wade-eliminates-constitutional-right-to-abortion-11656080124

Caroline Kitchener, “Roe’s gone. Now antiabortion lawmakers want more,” Washington Post, June 25, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/06/25/roe-antiabortion-lawmakers-restrictions-state-legislatures/

Jennifer Calfas and Deanna Paul, “Abortion Providers Confront New Landscape After Roe,” Wall Street Journal, June 26, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/in-wake-of-roe-v-wade-ruling-abortion-providers-confront-new-landscape-11656268445

Hannah Knowles and Josh Dawsey, “Pence leans in on abortion, as Trump, other potential 2024 candidates are more cautious,” Washington Post, June 27, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/06/27/abortion-2024-presidential-candidates/

Tara Palmeri, “D.C. Insiders Grapple with the Politics of Roe,” Puck News, June 27, 2022, https://puck.news/d-c-insiders-grapple-with-the-politics-of-roe/

Amanda Seitz, “Instagram and Facebook remove posts offering abortion pills,” Associated Press, June 27, 2022, https://apnews.com/article/abortion-technology-politics-health-media-016eb3efd65dafc2b568af1495f5bac5

Tatum Hunter, “You scheduled an abortion. Planned Parenthood’s website could tell Facebook,” Washington Post, June 29, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2022/06/29/planned-parenthood-privacy/

Caroline Kitchener and Devlin Barrett, “Antiabortion lawmakers want to block patients from crossing state lines,” Washington Post, June 29, 2022, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2022/06/29/abortion-state-lines/

Darryl Coote, “N.Y. AG to Google: Stop directing people seeking abortions to anti-abortion centers,” United Press International, June 30, 2022, https://www.upi.com/Top_News/US/2022/06/30/New-York-Google-Maps/9871656579373/

Maggie Koerth and Amelia Thomson-DeVeaux, “Even Exceptions To Abortion Bans Pit A Mother’s Life Against Doctors’ Fears,” FiveThirtyEight, June 30, 2022, https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/even-exceptions-to-abortion-bans-pit-a-mothers-life-against-doctors-fears/


Pittsburgh

Infrastructure

I’ve said it before: People around Pittsburgh act like you’re taking their last nickel if you charge ’em a buck or two to get on the turnpike. In this case, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) had a plan to help pay for crumbling infrastructure with tolls charged on bridges that aren’t on the Pennsylvania Turnpike system. One of those bridges is an overpass on Interstate 79, I believe over Pennsylvania Route 50, in Bridgeville. The entirely predictable and ludicrous outrage ensued. Bridgeville and Collier sued and the Commonwealth Court ruled that the agency had not followed a proper procedure for imposing the tolls.[4]

These people will whine like there’s no tomorrow when something happens like the Fern Hollow Bridge collapse.[5] But ask ’em to help pay for repairs? I swear they’d rather have the damn bridges collapse.

Jon Moss, “Pa. Commonwealth Court permanently blocks Gov. Tom Wolf’s bridge tolling plan,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, June 30, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/news/state/2022/06/30/pa-bridge-tolling-plan-blocked-commonwealth-court-judges-governor-tom-wolf-penndot/stories/202206300111


  1. [1]Max Hunder and Tom Balmforth, “Russia abandons Snake Island in victory for Ukraine,” Reuters, June 30, 2022, https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/russia-steps-up-attacks-ukraine-after-landmark-nato-summit-2022-06-30/
  2. [2]David Benfell, “Where does Vladimir Putin stop?” Not Housebroken, June 10, 2022, https://disunitedstates.org/2022/03/04/where-does-vladimir-putin-stop/
  3. [3]Dominic Nicholls, “They don’t like it when we don’t nod along,” in Telegraph Dispatches to Telegraph Dispatches list, “Dispatches,” March 28, 2022, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/
  4. [4]Jon Moss, “Pa. Commonwealth Court permanently blocks Gov. Tom Wolf’s bridge tolling plan,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, June 30, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/news/state/2022/06/30/pa-bridge-tolling-plan-blocked-commonwealth-court-judges-governor-tom-wolf-penndot/stories/202206300111
  5. [5]Ed Blazina et al., “‘A boom, then a monster sound’: 10 hurt after bridge over Pittsburgh’s Frick Park collapses,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, January 28, 2022, https://www.post-gazette.com/local/city/2022/01/28/pittsburgh-bridge-collapse-forbes-braddock-avenue-point-breeze-squirrel-hill/stories/202201280075

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