Men. Idiot fucking men. (Not all men, but men.)

Dorian

There is a new blog post entitled, “The captain is always right.”

Associated Press, “NOAA assailed for defending Trump’s Hurricane Dorian claim,” Los Angeles Times, September 7, 2019, https://www.latimes.com/world-nation/story/2019-09-07/noaa-assailed-defending-trump-hurricane-dorian-claim

Andrew Freedman, Colby Itkowitz, and Jason Samenow, “NOAA staff warned in Sept. 1 directive against contradicting Trump,” Washington Post, September 7, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/noaa-staff-warned-in-sept-1-directive-against-contradicting-trump/2019/09/07/12a52d1a-d18f-11e9-87fa-8501a456c003_story.html


#MeToo

Tim Bower, “The #MeToo Backlash,” Harvard Business Review, September/October 2019, https://hbr.org/2019/09/the-metoo-backlash


Pacific Gas and Electric

Katherine Blunt, “San Francisco Offers to Buy PG&E Wires in City,” Wall Street Journal, September 8, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/san-francisco-offers-to-buy-pg-e-wires-in-city-11567960938


Reboot and reinstall

All I wanted was to get my music collection onto my new iPhone. Talk about opening a can of worms.

Apple has done its level best to make it impossible to access the file structure on the iPhone through a USB connection and if there’s a way to do it via Bluetooth, I haven’t found it. And Google Drive doesn’t allow folder downloads via the web.

With Android and on Linux, I had programs or apps that got around this. They don’t seem to be available for the iPhone and those that are claimed to get around this either no longer exist or do not work.

So I tried booting into Windows to try to find out what my options are there. This was a huge mistake.

First, there didn’t seem to be any working options for downloading folders from my Google Drive to the iPhone.

But second, while I knew Windows would change the boot configuration so I’d have to go back into it at what used to be called the BIOS level and reconfigure it to get back into Linux, I wasn’t expecting it to make the Linux installations on the machine unbootable.

And when I tried going back in with a bootable USB drive, even though I’d chosen UEFI options, the Linux kernel wasn’t configured properly for UEFI.

No more. It’s time to cut the bullshit. I simply don’t have patience for this shit anymore.

So the Windows installation is blown away, the Sabayon Linux installation which had gotten increasingly problematic is blown away, the old Ubuntu installation is blown away.

I have a fresh Ubuntu installation and I’m restoring files from backup. I may go have a chat with the folks at the Apple Store about how to do what I need to do.

What all this means for this newsletter is that I won’t have up to date satellite images for a while. I still have the scripts—they’re backed up. But I don’t have them running on the new installation yet. Not only do I need to restore from backups, but I have to get scripts that had been tailored for Sabayon working under Ubuntu.

None of this is impossible. Ubuntu generally has more options than Sabayon. It’s just work.


Dorian

KRBAMS5E5FE3HA2OOQAAARGROA
Satellite photo of Dorian on the North Carolina coast, via the Washington Post, September 6, 2019.

Since nearly making landfall (I thought it actually had[1]) on the southern extent of the North Carolina coast, then as a category 2 storm,[2] Dorian basically followed the coast, weakening to category 1,[3] but certainly retaining strength longer than it would have had it gone inland.

As to landfall, it sure looked like the eye passed over the Outer Banks to me:
Continental US - Clean Longwave Window - IR
As of 8:00 am.

And I guess I was right this time (you know what they say about throwing darts).[4]

This is when I need to remember that the human rats (politicians) in Washington, D.C., are likely on high ground anyway:

While the storm could bring tropical-storm conditions to the tidal Potomac south of Cobb Island, it is not forecast to send a storm surge riding up the Potomac River toward Washington, D.C.[5]

So apart from a self-inflicted wound about Alabama[6] and barring a change in path, Donald Trump emerges from Dorian unscathed.

Meanwhile, the death toll in the Bahamas is now at least thirty.[7]

Mia Mottley, the prime minister of Barbados, spoke about her thoughts on Dorian’s links to the climate crisis. She did not pull her punches.

“We are on the frontline of the consequences of climate change but we don’t cause it,” she said. “And the vulnerability that attaches therefore to us is a matter we’re trying to get the international community to deal with consistently.”

She added: “People say the words and hear you, but they don’t follow through so that I have every confidence. Now that the last few years are beginning to show others that frontline states, whether it’s an island in the Caribbean or states in the US or cities, all of us who are continuously being affected, have to recognise that this doesn’t happen out of the blue.

“The warmer waters do what? They fuel the growth and the strength of hurricanes.”[8]

Valerie Bauerlein and Jon Kamp, “Weakened Hurricane Dorian Makes Landfall on North Carolina Coast,” Wall Street Journal, September 6, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/hurricane-dorian-makes-landfall-over-cape-hatteras-n-c-11567775699
210138_5day_cone_no_line_and_win
Matthew Cappucci and Andrew Freedman, “President Trump showed a doctored hurricane chart. Was it to cover up for ‘Alabama’ Twitter flub?” Washington Post, September 5, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/04/president-trump-shows-doctored-hurricane-chart-was-it-cover-up-alabama-twitter-flub/

Oliver Laughland and Adam Gabbatt, “’Everything is destroyed’: 30 dead in Bahamas as Dorian lashes North Carolina,” Guardian, September 6, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/sep/05/hurricane-dorian-latest-us-strength-path

Jamie Pietruska, “Why President Trump’s Sharpied weather map was likely a crime — and should be,” Washington Post, September 6, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2019/09/06/why-president-trumps-sharpied-weather-map-was-likely-crime-should-be/

Jason Samenow and Andrew Freedman, “Dorian slams N.C. Outer Banks with 95 mph winds, charges toward southeast Va., southeast New England,” Washington Post, September 6, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/06/dorian-lash-eastern-north-carolina-southeast-virginia-southeast-new-england-before-finally-zipping-away/


Recession

Add this[9] to the pile of reasons for worry:[10]

Hiring in August was also boosted heavily by the U.S. government adding 25,000 temporary workers to its payrolls for the 2020 Census.

“Hiring in the U.S. is slowing, not stopping,” said Mark Hamrick, senior economic analyst at Bankrate, although he called it “somewhat concerning” that setting aside government hiring, private sector job gains fell to 96,000.[11]

And remember that the psychology is a major factor.[12]

Heather Long, “U.S. economy adds just 130,000 jobs in August amid worries that trade war has sunk its teeth into hiring,” Washington Post, September 6, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2019/09/06/us-economy-adds-just-jobs-august-amid-worries-that-trade-war-has-sunk-its-teeth-into-hiring/


Gig economy

Aaron Gordon, “The Bill That Would Make Uber And Lyft Drivers Employees Isn’t Just Making Uber And Lyft Nervous,” Jalopnik, September 6, 2019, https://jalopnik.com/the-bill-that-would-make-uber-and-lyft-drivers-employee-1837909962


Brexit

There is a new blog post entitled, “Voters still need to decide on Brexit.”

Deutschewelle, “Brexit: House of Lords approves bill to block no deal,” September 6, 2019, https://www.dw.com/en/brexit-house-of-lords-approves-bill-to-block-no-deal/a-50331382


  1. [1]David Benfell, “Dorian (sort of) comes ashore in North Carolina,” Irregular Bullshit, September 6, 2019, https://disunitedstates.com/2019/09/06/dorian-comes-ashore-in-north-carolina/
  2. [2]Andrew Freedman and Jason Samenow, “‘Life-threatening’ storm surge, torrential rains and hurricane force winds pound the Carolinas as Hurricane Dorian grinds north,” Washington Post, September 5, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/05/life-threatening-storm-surge-torrential-rains-hurricane-force-winds-pound-carolinas-hurricane-dorian-grinds-north/
  3. [3]Jason Samenow and Andrew Freedman, “Dorian slams N.C. Outer Banks with 95 mph winds, charges toward southeast Va., southeast New England,” Washington Post, September 6, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/06/dorian-lash-eastern-north-carolina-southeast-virginia-southeast-new-england-before-finally-zipping-away/
  4. [4]Valerie Bauerlein and Jon Kamp, “Weakened Hurricane Dorian Makes Landfall on North Carolina Coast,” Wall Street Journal, September 6, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/hurricane-dorian-makes-landfall-over-cape-hatteras-n-c-11567775699
  5. [5]Jason Samenow and Andrew Freedman, “Dorian slams N.C. Outer Banks with 95 mph winds, charges toward southeast Va., southeast New England,” Washington Post, September 6, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/06/dorian-lash-eastern-north-carolina-southeast-virginia-southeast-new-england-before-finally-zipping-away/
  6. [6]Nancy Benac, “Trump clings to idea Alabama faced big threat from Dorian,” Associated Press, September 4, 2019, https://www.apnews.com/416144d854fb4302a9f34cccae81b0e0; Matthew Cappucci and Andrew Freedman, “President Trump showed a doctored hurricane chart. Was it to cover up for ‘Alabama’ Twitter flub?” Washington Post, September 5, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/04/president-trump-shows-doctored-hurricane-chart-was-it-cover-up-alabama-twitter-flub/; Jamie Pietruska, “Why President Trump’s Sharpied weather map was likely a crime — and should be,” Washington Post, September 6, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2019/09/06/why-president-trumps-sharpied-weather-map-was-likely-crime-should-be/
  7. [7]Oliver Laughland and Adam Gabbatt, “’Everything is destroyed’: 30 dead in Bahamas as Dorian lashes North Carolina,” Guardian, September 6, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/sep/05/hurricane-dorian-latest-us-strength-path
  8. [8]Oliver Laughland and Adam Gabbatt, “’Everything is destroyed’: 30 dead in Bahamas as Dorian lashes North Carolina,” Guardian, September 6, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/sep/05/hurricane-dorian-latest-us-strength-path
  9. [9]Heather Long, “U.S. economy adds just 130,000 jobs in August amid worries that trade war has sunk its teeth into hiring,” Washington Post, September 6, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2019/09/06/us-economy-adds-just-jobs-august-amid-worries-that-trade-war-has-sunk-its-teeth-into-hiring/
  10. [10]Jon Hilsenrath, “After Record-Long Expansion, Here’s What Could Knock the Economy Off Course,” Wall Street Journal, June 3, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/after-record-long-expansion-heres-what-could-knock-the-economy-off-course-11559591043; John Kemp, “Global economy is probably in recession,” Reuters, August 7, 2019, https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-global-economy-kemp/column-global-economy-is-probably-in-recession-idUKKCN1UX1OF; Colin Kruger, “‘Insane levels’: Can a world where profitless companies are flying last?” Sydney Morning Herald, August 10, 2019, https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/insane-levels-can-a-world-where-profitless-companies-are-flying-last-20190808-p52f3d.html; Damian Paletta, Thomas Heath, and Taylor Telford, “Stocks tank as another recession warning surfaces,” Washington Post, August 14, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2019/08/14/stocks-tank-another-recession-warning-surfaces/; Tim Wallace, “‘Very real’ recession risk as economy contracts for first time in seven years,” Telegraph, August 9, 2019, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2019/08/09/recession-risk-now-real-economy-contracts-first-time-seven-years/; Tim Wallace, “World economy faces a risk that’s far bigger than Trump’s trade war,” Sydney Morning Herald, August 9, 2019, https://www.smh.com.au/business/the-economy/world-economy-faces-a-risk-that-s-far-bigger-than-trump-s-trade-war-20190809-p52ffs.html
  11. [11]Heather Long, “U.S. economy adds just 130,000 jobs in August amid worries that trade war has sunk its teeth into hiring,” Washington Post, September 6, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2019/09/06/us-economy-adds-just-jobs-august-amid-worries-that-trade-war-has-sunk-its-teeth-into-hiring/
  12. [12]David Benfell, “As a possible or probable recession looms, neoliberalism evades challenge. Yet again,” Not Housebroken, August 14, 2019, https://disunitedstates.org/2019/08/14/as-a-possible-or-probable-recession-looms-neoliberalism-evades-challenge-yet-again/

Dorian (sort of) comes ashore in North Carolina

Updates

  1. Originally published, September 5, 9:05 pm.
  2. September 6, 8:39 am:
    • It turns out I misunderstood when I said below Dorian had made landfall. It appeared to me that the eyewall had come ashore, but apparently there’s another layer of subtlety here, and at this writing, I’m still figuring that out. They’re now saying it might make landfall over North Carolina’s Outer Banks.[1] I have adjusted the title and the text of this post.

Dorian

I was enmeshed in cell phone issues yesterday so I actually didn’t even remember to look at what Dorian was doing.
211226_5day_cone_no_line_and_win
It killed at least twenty people in the Bahamas. It turned north well off the Florida coast. As of 5:00 am, it had approached the Georgia coast and was expected to graze the Carolina coasts. It was once again a category 3 storm.[2] Charleston looked set to be a mess.[3] Tropical storm warnings and watches had been posted for an area including Virginia and Maryland, along with another area including Cape Cod in Massachusetts. Another area I couldn’t quite tell about was Washington, D.C.; it seems to me there will be considerable risk of flooding along the Potomac River and Chesapeake Bay to the extent that tides combine with winds.
Continental US - Clean Longwave Window - IR
As of 8:00 am. I thought we’d see weather in the Pittsburgh area from the outer reaches of Dorian in fairly short order. But it was mostly a beautiful and unusually clear day with really very little cumulus build up. I didn’t see a drop of rain.

eusgm-2019-09-05-20
72-hour gif, images two hours apart, as of 8:00 pm

As I was about to publish this issue, an alert from the Washington Post reported that Dorian had nearly made landfall in North Carolina. It had flooded downtown Charleston, South Carolina. It had dropped back down to being category 2.[4]

Andrew Freedman and Jason Samenow, “‘Life-threatening’ storm surge, torrential rains and hurricane force winds pound the Carolinas as Hurricane Dorian grinds north,” Washington Post, September 5, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/05/life-threatening-storm-surge-torrential-rains-hurricane-force-winds-pound-carolinas-hurricane-dorian-grinds-north/

Cameron McWhirter, Arian Campo-Flores, and Will Parker, “Hurricane Dorian Strengthens to Category 3 as It Churns Toward Carolinas,” Wall Street Journal, September 4, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/hurricane-dorian-churns-northward-off-floridas-coast-11567600739

Jason Samenow and
Andrew Freedman, “Dorian slams N.C. Outer Banks with 95 mph winds, charges toward southeast Va., southeast New England,” Washington Post, September 6, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/06/dorian-lash-eastern-north-carolina-southeast-virginia-southeast-new-england-before-finally-zipping-away/


Brexit

The anti-no-deal legislation has reached the Lords. Attempts to filibuster it have failed.[5] Let’s return to that flowchart from the Times:[6]
methodetimesprodwebbinb3e05f1e-c
Seriously, guys, thanks for this. Graphic from the Times, September 4, 2019. As of this morning, we were at “Lords passes bill” or “Lords rejects bill, bill fails,” with the Lords having agreed to take action in advance of Boris Johnson’s prorogation of Parliament.[7]

Peter Walker and Warren Murray, “Lords agree to push through bill preventing no-deal Brexit by end of Friday,” Guardian, September 4, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/sep/05/brexit-lords-agree-to-push-through-bill-preventing-no-deal-by-end-of-friday


  1. [1]Jason Samenow and
    Andrew Freedman, “Dorian slams N.C. Outer Banks with 95 mph winds, charges toward southeast Va., southeast New England,” Washington Post, September 6, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/06/dorian-lash-eastern-north-carolina-southeast-virginia-southeast-new-england-before-finally-zipping-away/
  2. [2]Cameron McWhirter, Arian Campo-Flores, and Will Parker, “Hurricane Dorian Strengthens to Category 3 as It Churns Toward Carolinas,” Wall Street Journal, September 4, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/hurricane-dorian-churns-northward-off-floridas-coast-11567600739
  3. [3]Andrew Freedman and Jason Samenow, “‘Life-threatening’ storm surge, torrential rains and hurricane force winds pound the Carolinas as Hurricane Dorian grinds north,” Washington Post, September 5, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/05/life-threatening-storm-surge-torrential-rains-hurricane-force-winds-pound-carolinas-hurricane-dorian-grinds-north/
  4. [4]Andrew Freedman and Jason Samenow, “Core of Hurricane Dorian barrels ashore in North Carolina with ‘Life-threatening’ storm surge, torrential rains and high winds,” Washington Post, September 5, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/05/life-threatening-storm-surge-torrential-rains-hurricane-force-winds-pound-carolinas-hurricane-dorian-grinds-north/
  5. [5]Peter Walker and Warren Murray, “Lords agree to push through bill preventing no-deal Brexit by end of Friday,” Guardian, September 4, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/sep/05/brexit-lords-agree-to-push-through-bill-preventing-no-deal-by-end-of-friday
  6. [6]Francis Elliott and Oliver Wright, “Moderates attack Boris Johnson after Tory rebels have whip removed,” Times, September 4, 2019, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/news/tory-rebels-defy-boris-johnson-in-historic-vote-hbnhhpzh7
  7. [7]Francis Elliott and Oliver Wright, “Moderates attack Boris Johnson after Tory rebels have whip removed,” Times, September 4, 2019, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/news/tory-rebels-defy-boris-johnson-in-historic-vote-hbnhhpzh7; Peter Walker and Warren Murray, “Lords agree to push through bill preventing no-deal Brexit by end of Friday,” Guardian, September 4, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/sep/05/brexit-lords-agree-to-push-through-bill-preventing-no-deal-by-end-of-friday

The world’s worst poker player

Brexit

Boris Johnson keeps raising the ante. There is a new blog entry entitled, “The world’s worst poker player, on a jet-powered bicycle at full throttle toward a brick wall.” He might be strapping on a rocket next.

Kevin Sullivan and Karla Adam, “Britain may face snap elections after Prime Minister Boris Johnson suffers major loss in Parliament,” Washington Post, September 3, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/showdown-set-for-the-british-parliament-as-legislators-return-from-summer-recess/2019/09/03/105ecca6-cb6c-11e9-9615-8f1a32962e04_story.html

Peter Walker and Jessica Elgot, “Boris Johnson’s ultimatum: back me or face 14 October election,” Guardian, September 2, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/sep/02/boris-johnson-threatens-to-ignore-mps-on-no-deal-brexit

Esther Webber and Kate Devlin, “Try and stop me rebelling, Philip Hammond tells No 10,” Times, September 3, 2019, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/edition/news/try-and-stop-me-rebelling-philip-hammond-tells-no-10-kbdzj8nwf


Recession

I’ve been inclined to think a recession is on the way for a while now[1] for a bunch of reasons.[2] Now Aaron Back, writing for the Wall Street Journal’s “Heard on the Street” column opines that “[s]igns of a possible recession keep stacking up. At some point it no longer makes sense to keep explaining them away.” The manufacturing index dipping below 50 is not a perfect recession signal and Back seems to think it’s less reliable than the inverted yield curve. But he concludes, “With both the yield curve and manufacturing surveys flashing red at the same time, it would be foolish to dismiss them both. No wonder investors are spooked.”[3]

Ruth Simon, Megumi Fujikawa, and Paul Hannon, “U.S.-China Trade War’s Global Impact Grows,” Wall Street Journal, September 2, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/u-s-china-trade-wars-global-impact-grows-11567466809

Aaron Back, “Another Recession Sign to Ignore at Your Peril,” Wall Street Journal, September 3, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/another-recession-sign-to-ignore-at-your-peril-11567530230


Hong Kong

Natasha Khan and Eva Dou, “Beijing Asserts Power to Declare Emergency to Quell Hong Kong Unrest,” Wall Street Journal, September 3, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/beijing-asserts-power-to-declare-emergency-to-quell-hong-kong-unrest-11567509276


Dorian

Continental US - Clean Longwave Window - IR
As of 8:00 am, Dorian’s eye had moved off of Grand Bahama, but the storm was still lashing the island. The storm had weakened to category 3,[4] but appeared to be beginning to affect Florida. It killed at least five people on the Abaco islands, to the east of Grand Bahama.[5]

The storm has weakened further since, to category 2, but looks set to graze the Atlantic Coast all the way up to Newfoundland.[6]
eusgm-2019-09-03-20FireShot Capture 083 - HURRICANE DORIAN - www.nhc.noaa.gov
72-hour gif, images 2 hours apart, as of 8:00 pm and National Hurricane Center storm track forecast as of 8:00 pm.

Andrew Freedman and Jason Samenow, “Dorian expands in size as tropical storm conditions hit Florida and the hurricane risk increases in the Carolinas,” Washington Post, September 3, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/03/hurricane-dorian-is-set-creep-north-closer-florida-georgia-carolinas-after-pounding-bahamas/

Arian Campo-Flores and Erin Ailworth, “Hurricane Dorian Death Toll at Five in Bahamas as Storm Is Headed for U.S.,” Wall Street Journal, September 3, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/hurricane-dorian-batters-bahamas-drives-toward-u-s-11567429839


  1. [1]David Benfell, “About that recession timing and the 2020 election,” Not Housebroken, August 25, 2019, https://disunitedstates.org/2019/08/25/about-that-recession-timing-and-the-2020-election/
  2. [2]Jon Hilsenrath, “After Record-Long Expansion, Here’s What Could Knock the Economy Off Course,” Wall Street Journal, June 3, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/after-record-long-expansion-heres-what-could-knock-the-economy-off-course-11559591043; John Kemp, “Global economy is probably in recession,” Reuters, August 7, 2019, https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-global-economy-kemp/column-global-economy-is-probably-in-recession-idUKKCN1UX1OF; Colin Kruger, “‘Insane levels’: Can a world where profitless companies are flying last?” Sydney Morning Herald, August 10, 2019, https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/insane-levels-can-a-world-where-profitless-companies-are-flying-last-20190808-p52f3d.html; Damian Paletta, Thomas Heath, and Taylor Telford, “Stocks tank as another recession warning surfaces,” Washington Post, August 14, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2019/08/14/stocks-tank-another-recession-warning-surfaces/; Tim Wallace, “‘Very real’ recession risk as economy contracts for first time in seven years,” Telegraph, August 9, 2019, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/business/2019/08/09/recession-risk-now-real-economy-contracts-first-time-seven-years/; Tim Wallace, “World economy faces a risk that’s far bigger than Trump’s trade war,” Sydney Morning Herald, August 9, 2019, https://www.smh.com.au/business/the-economy/world-economy-faces-a-risk-that-s-far-bigger-than-trump-s-trade-war-20190809-p52ffs.html
  3. [3]Aaron Back, “Another Recession Sign to Ignore at Your Peril,” Wall Street Journal, September 3, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/another-recession-sign-to-ignore-at-your-peril-11567530230
  4. [4]Arian Campo-Flores and Erin Ailworth, “Hurricane Dorian Death Toll at Five in Bahamas as Storm Is Headed for U.S.,” Wall Street Journal, September 3, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/hurricane-dorian-batters-bahamas-drives-toward-u-s-11567429839
  5. [5]Arian Campo-Flores and Erin Ailworth, “Hurricane Dorian Death Toll at Five in Bahamas as Storm Is Headed for U.S.,” Wall Street Journal, September 3, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/hurricane-dorian-batters-bahamas-drives-toward-u-s-11567429839
  6. [6]Andrew Freedman and Jason Samenow, “Dorian expands in size as tropical storm conditions hit Florida and the hurricane risk increases in the Carolinas,” Washington Post, September 3, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/03/hurricane-dorian-is-set-creep-north-closer-florida-georgia-carolinas-after-pounding-bahamas/

Boris Johnson isn’t even a bad poker player

Brexit

There is a new blog post entitled, “Even bad poker players know better.”

Jessica Elgot, “Johnson could sacrifice majority by withdrawing whip from rebel MPs,” Guardian, September 1, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/sep/01/boris-johnson-brexit-sacrifice-majority-by-withdrawing-whip-from-rebel-mps

Kate Proctor, “Irish border after Brexit – all ideas are beset by issues says secret paper,” Guardian, September 2, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2019/sep/02/irish-border-after-brexit-all-ideas-beset-by-issues


Dorian

Hurricane Dorian has pounded the northernmost islands of the Bahamas with winds gusting to more than 220mph (355km/h), the biggest storm to hit the Caribbean island chain in modern times.[1]

And of course this somehow has to be about Donald Trump, his astonishing ignorance, and his raging narcissism:

The storm decreased to category 4 and is expected to weaken further.[2] I would be cautious about that: The eye was passing over land, even if only the northwestern Bahama Islands; storms have been known to regain strength when they return to open water. It now appears to be turning north, off of Grand Bahama.
eusgm-2019-09-02-20
72-hour gif, images two hours apart (missing two images, from 2:00 pm and 4:00 pm, from yesterday), as of 8:00 pm.

Andrew Freedman and Jason Samenow, “Historic Hurricane Dorian unleashing ‘catastrophic’ blow in northern Bahamas. Hurricane warnings posted for Florida’s east coast,” Washington Post, September 1, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/01/catastrophic-hurricane-dorian-unleashes-devastating-blow-northern-bahamas-takes-aim-southeast-us/

Richard Luscombe, “Hurricane Dorian: first reported death as category 5 storm hits Bahamas,” Guardian, September 1, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/sep/01/hurricane-dorian-bahamas-us-flooding-florida-south-north-carolina

Jason Samenow and Andrew Freedman, “‘Catastrophic’ Hurricane Dorian blasting Bahamas while bearing down on Florida, threatening Georgia and the Carolinas,” Washington Post, September 2, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/02/catastrophic-hurricane-dorian-blasting-bahamas-bearing-down-florida-georgia-carolinas/


Hong Kong

Stack-HongKongDispatch
Undated photograph attributed to Anthony Kwan, via the New Yorker.[3]

I have wondered since Britain agreed to hand over Hong Kong how this could possibly end well. It seems we’re seeing the answer. I hope I’m wrong.

Megan K. Stack, “Bravery and Nihilism on the Streets of Hong Kong,” New Yorker, August 31, 2019, https://www.newyorker.com/news/dispatch/bravery-and-nihilism-amid-the-protests-in-hong-kong

Violet Law, “Looking to future, school students join Hong Kong protests,” Al Jazeera, September 2, 2019, https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2019/09/future-school-students-join-hong-kong-protests-190902082122134.html

Iain Marlow, Aaron McNicholas, and Natalie Lung, “Hong Kong Officials Urge Calm While Warning of ‘Signs of Terror,’” Bloomberg, September 2, 2019, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-09-02/hong-kong-officials-urge-calm-while-warning-of-signs-of-terror


  1. [1]Richard Luscombe, “Hurricane Dorian: first reported death as category 5 storm hits Bahamas,” Guardian, September 1, 2019, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/sep/01/hurricane-dorian-bahamas-us-flooding-florida-south-north-carolina
  2. [2]Jason Samenow and Andrew Freedman, “‘Catastrophic’ Hurricane Dorian blasting Bahamas while bearing down on Florida, threatening Georgia and the Carolinas,” Washington Post, September 2, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/02/catastrophic-hurricane-dorian-blasting-bahamas-bearing-down-florida-georgia-carolinas/
  3. [3]Megan K. Stack, “Bravery and Nihilism on the Streets of Hong Kong,” New Yorker, August 31, 2019, https://www.newyorker.com/news/dispatch/bravery-and-nihilism-amid-the-protests-in-hong-kong

Pretty close to the worst is happening in the northwestern Bahama Islands

Dorian

Continental US - Clean Longwave Window - IR
From 12:00 pm. Dorian is making a direct hit on the northwestern Bahama Islands, oh, and . . .

Yeah, just before it hit the northwestern Bahama Islands with what turned out to be up to 185 mile per hour winds.[1] And this was the forecast as of 11:00 am:
155815_5day_cone_no_line_and_win
It calls for the storm practically stalling over those islands,[2] meaning the storm hits, the punishment begins, and it just goes on and on and on. People there have to be wondering if it ever ends.

car-2019-09-01-18
72-hour gif, images two hours apart, as of 6:00 pm.

Now try to imagine being in the eye of that storm as this image was taken. Knowing you don’t dare stay out. Because the fury will resume at any moment.

There’s nothing I can say here that does justice to what the people on those islands must be going through.

British Broadcasting Corporation, “Hurricane Dorian: Bahamas braces for category four storm,” September 1, 2019, https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-49541485

Andrew Freedman and Jason Samenow, “Historic Hurricane Dorian unleashing ‘catastrophic’ blow in northern Bahamas, takes aim at Southeast U.S.,” Washington Post, September 1, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/01/catastrophic-hurricane-dorian-unleashes-devastating-blow-northern-bahamas-takes-aim-southeast-us/


Housekeeping

I am introducing categories for the Irregular Bullshit. Right now, they aren’t terribly useful, only some of them I can apply in bulk by searching for them, and there is a lot of stuff here that might never get properly categorized. But I’m trying.

Articles can be assigned multiple categories and categories can be seen on the line with the author (always, at least for the foreseeable future, “benfell”) and date in a light grey. The idea is that you can click on a category and find other posts in that category.


Pittsburgh

Owing to cell phone issues, I have found myself with some unplanned time off. Yesterday I found a couple of significant (to me) markers at the Mount Lebanon Cemetery.

Today I went to Braddock’s Battlefield History Center. I’ve been a bit perplexed. I had thought ‘Braddock’ was the name of a British general in the Amerikkkan Revolution. This one actually met his end in a defeat at the hands of the French and their allied American Indians in battle at the site of this museum early in the French and Indian War, a contest over the Ohio River Valley which connected French Canadian holdings ultimately to Louisiana, and in which the British later captured Fort Duquesne, which then became Fort Pitt (later Pittsburgh).

Because of my mistake, I was wondering why at least three towns (Braddock, North Braddock, and Braddock Hills) bear his name in an area that goes well beyond wearing its patriotism on its sleeve. It seems I was just wrong: I checked my old history textbook (actually a more recent edition of the one I used in my undergraduate work) and found the name ‘Braddock’ only in the context of this battle.[3]


  1. [1]Andrew Freedman and Jason Samenow, “Historic Hurricane Dorian unleashing ‘catastrophic’ blow in northern Bahamas, takes aim at Southeast U.S.,” Washington Post, September 1, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/01/catastrophic-hurricane-dorian-unleashes-devastating-blow-northern-bahamas-takes-aim-southeast-us/
  2. [2]Andrew Freedman and Jason Samenow, “Historic Hurricane Dorian unleashing ‘catastrophic’ blow in northern Bahamas, takes aim at Southeast U.S.,” Washington Post, September 1, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/09/01/catastrophic-hurricane-dorian-unleashes-devastating-blow-northern-bahamas-takes-aim-southeast-us/
  3. [3]Paul S. Boyer et al., The Enduring Vision: A History of the American People, 8th ed. (Boston: Wadsworth, 2014).

Climate crisis

Updates

  1. Originally published, August 31, 5:03 pm.
  2. August 31, 6:46 pm:
    • Updated the 72-hour gif. Dorian is really getting close to those northwestern Bahama Islands now.
  3. August 31, 7:37 pm:
    • I’m having real trouble visualizing that there’s much of anywhere on the northwestern Bahama Islands to evacuate to, but I guess that’s what they’re doing.[1]
  4. August 31, 8:18 pm:
    • Updated the National Hurricane Center forecast storm track map for Dorian. They appear not to have a revised tropical storm wind forecast map.
    • Updated the 72-hour gif. Dorian still looks like it is headed straight for the northwestern Bahama Islands.
    • Updated commentary on Dorian.
  5. August 31, 10:15 pm:
    • Updated the 72-hour gif. If you’re in the northwest Bahamas, this must be terrifying.

The Amazon

There is a new blog post entitled, “A hurricane, a burning rainforest, and economic survival: Why we cannot view these problems separately.”

Max Fisher, “‘It’s Really Close’: How the Amazon Rainforest Could Self-Destruct,” New York Times, August 30, 2019, https://www.nytimes.com/2019/08/30/world/americas/amazon-rainforest-fires-climate.html

Gabriel Stargardter, “Why is Bolsonaro wary of foreign Amazon aid? Ask Brazil’s military,” Reuters, August 30, 2019, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-brazil-environment-military/why-is-bolsonaro-wary-of-foreign-amazon-aid-ask-brazils-military-idUSKCN1VK2HQ


Dorian

I have to say that the Bermuda High, previously thought likely to steer Dorian directly into Florida,[2] just doesn’t look very convincing to me at all.

In all fairness, I’m used to looking at the Pacific High, which shields much of the U.S. west coast from storms during the summer. And this Bermuda High thing just isn’t anywhere near as persuasive. Seriously, this is pathetic by comparison. And they really thought this was gonna stop Dorian from going north?

eusgm-2019-08-31-22
72-hour gif, images two hours apart, as of 10:00 pm.

I wouldn’t have been surprised to see Dorian turn north well before the forecast in the Washington Post story, in which Dorian would have skirted much of the east coast right up through North Carolina’s Cape Hatteras.[3] The more recent forecast storm track puts the storm a little further off shore and seems much more reasonable to me.

234045_5day_cone_no_line_and_win
205408
National Hurricane Center maps, August 31, 2019.

Leila Macor, “Bahamas braces as monster Hurricane Dorian heads for US mainland,” Yahoo! News, August 31, 2019, https://news.yahoo.com/puerto-rico-braces-hit-tropical-storm-dorian-133659477.html

Jason Samenow, “‘Extremely dangerous’ Hurricane Dorian barrels toward Southeast U.S. as likelihood of direct hit on Florida decreases,” Washington Post, August 31, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/08/31/extremely-dangerous-hurricane-dorian-churns-toward-southeast-us-florida-forecast-is-highly-uncertain/


  1. [1]Leila Macor, “Bahamas braces as monster Hurricane Dorian heads for US mainland,” Yahoo! News, August 31, 2019, https://news.yahoo.com/puerto-rico-braces-hit-tropical-storm-dorian-133659477.html
  2. [2]Jason Samenow, Matthew Cappucci, and Andrew Freedman, “Potentially disastrous Hurricane Dorian strengthens to Category 4 as it targets Florida and Southeast U.S.,” Washington Post, August 30, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/08/30/potentially-disastrous-hurricane-dorian-looms-closer-stronger-targeting-florida-southeast-us/
  3. [3]Jason Samenow, “‘Extremely dangerous’ Hurricane Dorian barrels toward Southeast U.S. as likelihood of direct hit on Florida decreases,” Washington Post, August 31, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/08/31/extremely-dangerous-hurricane-dorian-churns-toward-southeast-us-florida-forecast-is-highly-uncertain/

Donald Trump just isn’t that into Faux News (not fake enough) anymore

Updates

  1. Originally published, August 30, 8:26 pm.
  2. Update August 30, 9:55 pm:
    • Dorian is now a category 4 storm as it approaches the Bahamas. Considerable uncertainty remains as to how it will affect Florida.[1] I have also updated the maps from the National Hurricane Center.

Faux News

So in the last installment,[2] Donald Trump slammed Faux News for daring to feature some neoliberals (Democrats).[3] Now we have the spurned Faux News firing back.[4] I’m waiting to see the supermarket tabloids on this one. ’Cause you know that’s where all the juicy stuff is.

Allyson Chiu,“‘We don’t work for you’: Fox News’s Neil Cavuto rebukes Trump for slamming network,” Washington Post, August 30, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2019/08/30/neil-cavuto-fox-news-trump-work-you/


Gig economy

There is a new blog post entitled, “Time for the gig economy to grow up.”

Aaron Gordon, “Uber And Lyft Don’t Have A Right To Exist,” Jalopnik, August 30, 2019, https://jalopnik.com/uber-and-lyft-dont-have-a-right-to-exist-1837680434

Alejandro Lazo and Eliot Brown, “Uber, Lyft, DoorDash Threaten Ballot Fight Over California Gig-Worker Law,” Wall Street Journal, August 29, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/uber-lyft-doordash-threaten-ballot-fight-over-california-gig-worker-law-11567126445


Elon Musk

There is another new blog post entitled, “The consciousness of Elon Musk.”

Edwin Chan, Lulu Yilun Chen, and Chunying Zhang, “The Time a Jet-Lagged Musk Made Alibaba’s Jack Ma Sound Grounded,” Bloomberg, August 29, 2019, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-08-29/the-time-a-jet-lagged-musk-made-alibaba-s-jack-ma-sound-grounded


Dorian

234529_5day_cone_no_line_and_win
This storm track takes Dorian almost directly over the northern Bahama Islands. National Hurricane Center map, August 30, 2019, fair use.

For those who are hoping, seriously or otherwise,[5] Mar a Lago is on south Florida’s Atlantic coast, roughly parallel with Grand Bahama.

I’ve been thinking this storm would surely turn north. Initially I figured it would hit the Carolinas. But as of the 8:00 pm images, the storm appeared to be following an earlier forecast track fairly closely. If the track shown above holds, Dorian should make landfall near Vero Beach, far enough north from Mar a Lago that winds should be strong but considerably reduced. We’re not talking eye wall stuff here by something like 80 miles.
234529
Note that the purple zone is for winds 39 miles per hour or higher. National Hurricane Center map, August 30, 2019, fair use.
car-2019-08-30-20
72-hour gif, images taken two hours apart, as of 8:00 pm.

Kayla Epstein, “‘I’m rooting for a direct hit on Mar a Lago!’ Former Canadian prime minister creates Twitter storm,” Washington Post, August 30, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2019/08/30/im-rooting-direct-hit-mar-a-lago-former-canadian-pm-creates-twitter-storm/

Jason Samenow, Matthew Cappucci, and Andrew Freedman, “Potentially disastrous Hurricane Dorian strengthens to Category 4 as it targets Florida and Southeast U.S.,” Washington Post, August 30, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/08/30/potentially-disastrous-hurricane-dorian-looms-closer-stronger-targeting-florida-southeast-us/


  1. [1]Jason Samenow, Matthew Cappucci, and Andrew Freedman, “Potentially disastrous Hurricane Dorian strengthens to Category 4 as it targets Florida and Southeast U.S.,” Washington Post, August 30, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/08/30/potentially-disastrous-hurricane-dorian-looms-closer-stronger-targeting-florida-southeast-us/
  2. [2]David Benfell, “Are we waiting for the make-up sex or does this count as another divorce?” Irregular Bullshit, August 29, 2019, https://disunitedstates.com/2019/08/29/are-we-waiting-for-the-make-up-sex-or-does-this-count-as-another-divorce/
  3. [3]Brett Samuels, “Trump criticizes Fox, which ‘isn’t working for us anymore,’” Hill, August 28, 2019, https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/459105-trump-criticizes-fox-which-isnt-working-for-us-anymore
  4. [4]Allyson Chiu,“‘We don’t work for you’: Fox News’s Neil Cavuto rebukes Trump for slamming network,” Washington Post, August 30, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2019/08/30/neil-cavuto-fox-news-trump-work-you/
  5. [5]Kayla Epstein, “‘I’m rooting for a direct hit on Mar a Lago!’ Former Canadian prime minister creates Twitter storm,” Washington Post, August 30, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2019/08/30/im-rooting-direct-hit-mar-a-lago-former-canadian-pm-creates-twitter-storm/

Are we waiting for the make-up sex or does this count as another divorce?

Faux News

Donald Trump apparently did not utter the words, “I divorce thee,” three times. (Oh right, that’s a custom among some Muslims. Well, you know, lots of things are confusing these days.)

Brett Samuels, “Trump criticizes Fox, which ‘isn’t working for us anymore,’” Hill, August 28, 2019, https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/459105-trump-criticizes-fox-which-isnt-working-for-us-anymore


Jeffrey Epstein

There is a new blog post entitled, “We’ll never know. We’ll never be able to conclusively rule out the conspiracy theories about Jeffrey Epstein’s death.” I’m sure the elite will manage to trudge on. It must be tough.

Mark Hosenball, “FBI studies two broken cameras outside cell where Epstein died: source,” Reuters, August 28, 2019, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-people-jeffrey-epstein-cameras-idUSKCN1VI2LC


Uber

There is another new blog post entitled, “Uber’s spiral down.”

Eliot Brown and Sarah Nassauer, “Uber Cuts Third of Marketing Staff; Lyft Chief Operating Officer Exits,” Wall Street Journal, July 29, 2019, https://www.wsj.com/articles/uber-cuts-third-of-marketing-staff-lyft-chief-operating-officer-exits-11564430556


Dorian

car-2019-08-29-20
Dorian’s brush with Puerto Rico and a string of Carribean islands can still be seen in this 72-hour gif, composed of images taken two hours apart, as of 8:00 pm EDT tonight.

Matthew Cappucci, Andrew Freedman, and Jason Samenow, “Hurricane Dorian: Florida on guard for potential major hurricane strike,” Washington Post, August 29, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/weather/2019/08/29/hurricane-dorian-florida-guard-potential-major-hurricane-strike/


Sexual orientation

Can sexual orientation be attributed to nature or nurture? The answer seems to be, it’s complicated, but there are a number of genetic components that appear to increase the probability of particular orientations.[1] What we’re not seeing here is linear causation, with one cause and one effect. But these findings would seem to indicate that sexual orientation cannot be attributed solely to any social cause. They will be a blow to social conservatives, especially those who think they can “reprogram” people to be heterosexual.

Andrea Ganna, et al., “Large-scale GWAS reveals insights into the genetic architecture of same-sex sexual behavior,” Science 365, no. 6456 (2019), doi: 10.1126/science.aat7693


Brexit

But one top Johnson lieutenant, Defense Secretary Ben Wallace, was caught on camera acknowledging that Johnson was struggling to push through Brexit without a majority.

“Parliament has been very good at saying what it doesn’t want. It has been awful at saying what it wants. That’s the reality. So eventually any leader has to, you know, try,” Wallace explained to French Defense Minister Florence Parly, caught on camera ahead of an unrelated meeting in Helsinki.

A government spokesman said later that Wallace “misspoke.”[2]

But everyone knows that Ben Wallace “misspoke” the truth. It’s really rather silly, which I guess is another word for a legal artifice, to deny it.

Karla Adam and Michael Birnbaum, “Allies of British prime minister resign amid outrage over Parliament suspension,” Washington Post, August 29, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/british-leaders-backers-dismiss-outrage-over-parliament-suspension-as-candyfloss/2019/08/29/fa1e2c96-ca3c-11e9-a4f3-c081a126de70_story.html


  1. [1]Andrea Ganna, et al., “Large-scale GWAS reveals insights into the genetic architecture of same-sex sexual behavior,” Science 365, no. 6456 (2019), doi: 10.1126/science.aat7693
  2. [2]Karla Adam and Michael Birnbaum, “Allies of British prime minister resign amid outrage over Parliament suspension,” Washington Post, August 29, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/british-leaders-backers-dismiss-outrage-over-parliament-suspension-as-candyfloss/2019/08/29/fa1e2c96-ca3c-11e9-a4f3-c081a126de70_story.html

Abuse of power

There is a new blog post entitled, “The quandary of anarchism as the tower crumbles.”


Brexit

Karla Adam and Michael Birnbaum, “Queen approves Boris Johnson’s request to suspend Parliament ahead of Brexit deadline,” Washington Post, August 28, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/boris-johnson-accused-of-deeply-dangerous-behavior-after-reports-he-will-shutter-parliament-ahead-of-brexit/2019/08/28/6bca5988-c96f-11e9-a1fe-ca46e8d573c0_story.html

British Broadcasting Corporation, “Boris Johnson asks Queen to suspend Parliament,” August 28, 2019, https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-politics-49493632


Pittsburgh

Relevant to my recent blog post,[1] the Allegheny County Council voted against forming a civilian police review board, with council members asserting that they are already responsible for civilian review.[2] Perhaps so, but based on what I saw yesterday,[3] if this is indeed the case, they should all be impeached for dereliction of duty.

Or maybe they just really think the cops here are just fine the way they are.

Jamie Martines, “County council votes down Allegheny police review board, supporters vow to keep pushing,” TribLive, August 27, 2019, https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-allegheny/county-council-votes-down-allegheny-police-review-board-supporters-vow-to-keep-pushing/


Migration

Nick Miroff and Josh Dawsey, “‘Take the land’: President Trump wants a border wall. He wants it black. And he wants it by Election Day,” Washington Post, August 27, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/immigration/take-the-land-president-trump-wants-a-border-wall-he-wants-it-black-and-he-wants-it-by-election-day/2019/08/27/37b80018-c821-11e9-a4f3-c081a126de70_story.html

Molly O’Toole, “Trump administration appears to violate law in forcing asylum seekers back to Mexico, officials warn,” Los Angeles Times, August 28, 2019, https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2019-08-28/trump-administration-pushes-thousands-to-mexico-to-await-asylum-cases


Dorian

The storm seems to have dealt a glancing blow—I gather it was a bit more exciting if you were there—to Puerto Rico. I’m otherwise insufficiently familiar with the geography to identify the islands it appears to passed directly over.
pr-2019-08-28-20
As of 8:00 pm, 72-hour gif, images two hours apart.

CNN, “Hurricane Dorian nears Puerto Rico,” August 28, 2019, https://www.cnn.com/webview/us/live-news/tropical-storm-dorian-august-28/index.html


  1. [1]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/
  2. [2]Jamie Martines, “County council votes down Allegheny police review board, supporters vow to keep pushing,” TribLive, August 27, 2019, https://triblive.com/local/pittsburgh-allegheny/county-council-votes-down-allegheny-police-review-board-supporters-vow-to-keep-pushing/
  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/