Smokestacks from old coal-burning power plant in Cheswick come down

Pennsylvania and surrounding areas

Pittsburgh, the Ohio Valley, and surrounding areas

Pollution


Fig. 1. Photographer unknown, circa 1940-1950, from Smoke Control Lantern Slide Collection, ca. 1940-1950, AIS.1978.22, Archives Service Center, University of Pittsburgh, via Bloomberg,[1] fair use.

Quinn Glabicki and Lucas Dufalla, “In the Allegheny Valley, after a century of coal power, the towers have toppled,” Pittsburgh Public Source, June 2, 2023, https://www.publicsource.org/cheswick-springdale-power-plant-implosion-coal-allegheny-county-valley-charah/

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, “Photo gallery: Cheswick Generating Station’s smokestacks come down,” June 2, 2023, https://triblive.com/local/valley-news-dispatch/photo-gallery-cheswick-generating-stations-smokestacks-come-down/


Gilead

Donald Trump

Coup attempt


Fig. 1. “Jake Angeli (Qanon Shaman), seen holding a Qanon sign at the intersection of Bell Rd and 75th Ave in Peoria, Arizona, on 2020 October 15.” Photography by TheUnseen011101 [pseud.], October 15, 2020, via Wikimedia Commons, public domain.

Bess Levin, “Report: Trump’s Lawyer Revealed Some Unfortunate Things for Trump in Classified-Docs Case,” Vanity Fair, May 30, 2023, https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2023/05/donald-trump-evan-corcoran-documents-investigation

Asawin Suebsaeng and Adam Rawnsley, “Team Trump Scrambles to Unmask the Feds Investigating Him,” Rolling Stone, May 30, 2023, https://www.rollingstone.com/politics/politics-features/trump-fbi-justice-department-purge-1234743318/

Martin Pengelly, “Donald Trump reiterates pledge to scrap birthright US citizenship,” Guardian, May 31, 2023, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/may/31/donald-trump-birthright-us-citizenship

Katelyn Polantz, Paula Reid, and Kaitlan Collins, “Trump captured on tape talking about classified document he kept after leaving the White House,” Cable News Network, May 31, 2023, https://www.cnn.com/2023/05/31/politics/trump-tape-classified-document-iran-milley/index.html

Harry Litman, “The DOJ’s classified documents case was already dire for Trump. Now it looks even worse,” Los Angeles Times, June 1, 2023, https://www.latimes.com/opinion/story/2023-06-01/doj-classified-documents-case-donald-trump-mar-a-lago-jack-smith

Kaitlan Collins, Paula Reid, and Katelyn Polantz, “Trump attorneys haven’t found classified document former president referred to on tape following subpoena,” Cable News Network, June 2, 2023, https://www.cnn.com/2023/06/02/politics/donald-trump-iran-subpoena/index.html

Chris Stein, “‘They fought for freedom’: the nightly vigil to sanctify the January 6 rioters,” Guardian, June 3, 2023, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2023/jun/03/washington-dc-vigil-january-6-capitol-trump

Abortion


Fig. 1. Sign at demonstration in front of the U.S. Supreme Court, May 3, 2022. Janni Rye, via Wikimedia Commons, Creative Commons CC0 1.0 Universal Public Domain Dedication.

The Republican State Leadership Committee (RSLC) [which in turn funded groups working to elect anti-abortion state legislators] received donations of tens of thousands of dollars each from corporations including Comcast, Intuit, Wells Fargo, Amazon, Bank of America and Google last year, the [Center for Political Accountability’s] analysis of [Internal Revenue Service] filings shows. The contributions were made in the months after Politico published a leaked supreme court decision indicating that the court would end the right to nationwide abortion access.[2]

If I was into conspiracy theories, I would suggest that white Christian nationalists pursue a fake jihad against high technology to distract us from following the money. For their part, Intuit, one of only two companies responding to a request for comment, claimed they also bribe Democratic Party politicians because

engagement with policymakers is essential to a robust democracy and political giving is just one of the many ways Intuit engages on behalf of its customers, employees, and the communities it serves.

A Bank of America spokesperson pointed to the company’s policy that donations to so-called 527 organizations such as the RSLC come with the caveat that they only be used for operational and administrative purposes, not to support any candidates or ballot initiatives. The CPA, meanwhile, argues that since the RSLC’s operations are explicitly designed to support candidates and ballot initiatives, such a policy is a distinction without a difference.[3]

Google, in particular, has repeatedly come under fire for labeling pregnancy crisis centers run by anti-abortion groups as abortion clinics, promised to remedy the labeling, and, last I heard, failed to do so.[4] It has also cooperated with anti-abortion efforts in other ways with the vast quantities of data it hoovers up.[5]

With such reports, it gets progressively harder to believe Google and other companies just don’t know what they’re doing and progressively easier to believe they’re just trying to deflect criticism for pursuing an intentional anti-abortion strategy. I am accordingly phasing out my use of Google services, but this is a slow and expensive process with no end-point in sight. Amazon is even more difficult; I simply don’t have time for brick and mortar stores and often need stuff sooner rather than later, meaning I need Prime delivery.

Nick Robins-Early, “Amazon and Google fund anti-abortion lawmakers through complex shell game,” Guardian, June 3, 2023, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/jun/03/anti-abortion-lawmakers-donation-amazon-google-comcast


  1. [1]Mark Byrnes, “What Pittsburgh Looked Like When It Decided It Had a Pollution Problem,” Bloomberg, June 5, 2012, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2012-06-05/what-pittsburgh-looked-like-when-it-decided-it-had-a-pollution-problem
  2. [2]Nick Robins-Early, “Amazon and Google fund anti-abortion lawmakers through complex shell game,” Guardian, June 3, 2023, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/jun/03/anti-abortion-lawmakers-donation-amazon-google-comcast
  3. [3]Nick Robins-Early, “Amazon and Google fund anti-abortion lawmakers through complex shell game,” Guardian, June 3, 2023, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/jun/03/anti-abortion-lawmakers-donation-amazon-google-comcast
  4. [4]Meghan Bobrowsky, “Google Says Maps, Searches Will Identify Clinics That Provide Abortions,” Wall Street Journal, August 25, 2022, https://www.wsj.com/articles/google-says-maps-searches-will-identify-clinics-that-provide-abortions-11661457587; 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/
  5. [5]Jennifer Gollan, “Websites Selling Abortion Pills Are Sharing Sensitive Data With Google,” ProPublica, January 18, 2023, https://www.propublica.org/article/websites-selling-abortion-pills-share-sensitive-data-with-google; Poppy Noor, “Google targets low-income US women with ads for anti-abortion pregnancy centers, study shows,” Guardian, February 7, 2023, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/feb/07/google-targets-low-income-women-anti-abortion-pregnancy-center-study; Katherine Tangalakis-Lippert, “Facebook and Google are handing over user data to help police prosecute abortion seekers,” Business Insider, March 4, 2023, https://www.businessinsider.com/police-getting-help-social-media-to-prosecute-people-seeking-abortions-2023-2

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