So Vladimir Putin had a little ‘accident’


Fig. 1. “The atomic cloud over Nagasaki 1945.” Photograph from Office for Emergency Management. Office of War Information. Overseas Operations Branch, New York Office, News and Features Bureau, (12/17/1942 – 09/15/1945), by Charles Levy, August 9, 1945, public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.

It seems a missile probably made in Russia hit Polish territory. The assumption that Russia launched the missile is being investigated. That the missile was in fact made in Russia has not been confirmed. But, at least in theory, Vladimir Putin might now actually have himself a shooting war with the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.[1]

A lot will surely depend on the “findings” of an “investigation.” Perhaps Russia did indeed manufacture the missile. Perhaps Russia did indeed launch the missile. Perhaps Russia intentionally targeted Poland. But NATO’s investigation can, of course, conveniently fail to substantiate such claims. And it would help loads if such a report were in fact credible. Of course, that might require Putin to make some concessions.

A problem for anyone attempting to downplay the attack will be Putin’s own, his government’s own, and his propagandists’ own rhetoric suggesting that his war on Ukraine is in fact a war against NATO.[2] Another problem is that he and they have rattled his sword at Poland already.[3] That should raise the price Putin will have to pay.

That is, unless Putin actually wants a shooting war with NATO.

I’m wondering how this plays.

Seung Min Kim and Zeke Miller, “Biden calls ‘emergency’ meeting after missile hits Poland,” Associated Press, November 15, 2022,



Unauthorized violence

Fig. 2. “A woman reacts at a makeshift memorial outside the Tree of Life synagogue following Saturday’s shooting at the synagogue in Pittsburgh, Oct. 29, 2018,” photograph by Cathal McNaughton for Reuters, via ABC News, October 29, 2018,[4] fair use.

Justin Vellucci, “Bystander struck by bullet in Downtown Pittsburgh, police say,” Pittsburgh Tribune=Review, November 15, 2022,


Donald Trump

Coup attempt

Fig. 3. Original: The White House. Derivative work: J. J. Messerly, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons.

Utterly unsurprisingly, our least favorite delusional raging narcissist, formerly -in-chief, is running again.[5] At this point, it’s hardly even news. Yawn.

Amy Gardner, Reis Thebault, and Robert Klemko, “Election deniers lose races for key state offices in every 2020 battleground,” Washington Post, November 13, 2022,

Richard M. Nixon [Justin Sherin], “The Field Takes Shape,&rdqo; Patreon, November 13, 2022,

Nicholas Riccardi and Ken Ritter, “Cortez Masto wins in Nevada, giving Democrats Senate control,” Associated Press, November 13, 2022,

Devlin Barrett and Josh Dawsey, “Investigators see ego, not money, as Trump’s motive on classified papers,” Washington Post, November 14, 2022,

Isaac Arnsdorf, “Trump, who as president fomented an insurrection, says he is running again,” Washington Post, November 15, 2022,

Jonathan J. Cooper, “Hobbs wins Arizona governor’s race, flipping state for Dems,” Associated Press, November 15, 2022,


Fig. 4. Photograph by author, November 15, 2022.

I don’t think anyone in Pittsburgh was actually expecting it to snow today. According to the thermometer in my dashboard, the temperature never got below 34° Fahrenheit, but I was sometimes driving through blizzard-like conditions. I never had a problem with traction, but the facts that 1) the snow was actually sticking to the ground (figure 4) and 2) the roads had not been salted meant a lot of folks, myself included, were driving very conservatively.

  1. [1]Seung Min Kim and Zeke Miller, “Biden calls ‘emergency’ meeting after missile hits Poland,” Associated Press, November 15, 2022,
  2. [2]CTV, “Top Russian diplomat warns Ukraine against provoking world war,” April 26, 2022,; Chiara Giordano, “Russia effectively at war with Nato, Lavrov says as he calls western weapons ‘legitimate targets,’” Independent, April 25, 2022,; Toby Helm et al., “Defiant Putin warns the west: your sanctions are akin to an act of war,” Guardian, March 5, 2022,; Julia Ioffe, “Europe’s 9/11,” Puck News, March 3, 2022,; Robin Wright, “What Does Putin’s Nuclear Sabre Rattling Mean?” New Yorker, March 1, 2022,
  3. [3]Luke Harding, Peter Beaumont, and Lorenzo Tondo, “Russia missile strike on Ukraine base close to Polish border kills 35, governor says,” Guardian, March 13, 2022,; James Kilner, “Russian MP accuses Poland of planning to take Kaliningrad back from Moscow,” Telegraph, March 26, 2022,
  4. [4]Bill Hutchinson et al., “Pittsburgh synagogue-shooting suspect wheeled into courtroom; Trump to visit city Tuesday,” ABC News, October 29, 2019,
  5. [5]Isaac Arnsdorf, “Trump, who as president fomented an insurrection, says he is running again,” Washington Post, November 15, 2022,

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