Not that this should be even remotely surprising, but hydroxychloroquine is bad stuff, even if a “very stable genius” recommends it:
“It’s one thing not to have benefit, but this [study] shows distinct harm,” said Eric Topol, a cardiologist and director of the Scripps Research Translational Institute. “If there was ever hope for this drug [hydroxychloroquine], this is the death of it.” . . .
For those given hydroxychloroquine, there was a 34 percent increase in risk of mortality and a 137 percent increased risk of a serious heart arrhythmias. For those receiving hydroxychloroquine and an antibiotic — the cocktail endorsed by Trump — there was a 45 percent increased risk of death and a 411 percent increased risk of serious heart arrhythmias.
Those given chloroquine had a 37 percent increased risk of death and a 256 percent increased risk of serious heart arrhythmias. For those taking chloroquine and an antibiotic, there was a 37 percent increased risk of death and a 301 percent increased risk of serious heart arrhythmias.
While this particular study relies on correlation, controlled experiments have also shown an increased risk of heart problems and little or no benefit in treating COVID-19.
I have decided I can no longer patronize my favorite vegan restaurant in the Pittsburgh area, the one in North Strabane. The old man is a brilliant cook, really he is, but his attitude toward the lockdown, even to wearing masks, is unacceptable. I’m pretty sure he’s getting his information from the same sources as white supremacists who also blame Jews for the virus, which is especially ironic given that the family that runs this place appears to be conservative Jewish. Sorry, I just can’t wrap my head around this.
Fig. 1. I don’t think I’m slick enough for Slickville, in Westmoreland County, Pennsylvania. Photograph by author, May 22, 2020.
I am discovering that if you get far enough away from Pittsburgh, the white supremacist gun nuttery seems to recede to something like a normal level. I wound up out in Greensburg, which is in Westmoreland County, today and it felt like a breath of fresh air. The rent is still too high and I have seen way too much social conservatism in previous visits to Westmoreland County anyway, but it may be possible for me to remain in the Pittsburgh area, albeit at some distance.
I should have emphasized that a study led by Los Alamos scientists identifying a potentially more contagious mutation of the novel coronavirus has not yet been peer-reviewed.
Twelve years ago today, I drove up to a vegan sandwich shop in Oakland, California, ordered a sandwich made with fake meat, decided I could go vegan, and did. That shop is long gone as are, I’m sorry to say, a number of vegan restaurants that had been open as of about that time. But I remain vegan.
Fig. 1. Meme from Truthout, posted on Facebook on May 3, 2020, fair use.
Yet again, classified evidence. It was manipulated with Iraqi weapons of mass destruction that turned out not to exist and therefore undermined assertions that the Russians had interfered with the U.S. election in 2016. Now the Trump administration is flogging a conspiracy theory that the novel coronavirus escaped from a Chinese lab. Relying on classified evidence.
Of course, no one serious will believe them. But Donald Trump’s base will. And those are the only people Trump thinks he needs to persuade.
Whatever the origin of the novel coronavirus, there is, apparently, a new, more contagious mutation now in the wild. “In addition to spreading faster, it may make people vulnerable to a second infection after a first bout with the disease, [a new study led by scientists at Los Alamos National Laboratory] warned.” Further, it is possible that people who have been infected with the earlier version may be susceptible to the mutated version. Yay, team.
Fig. 2. Cartoon by Kevin Siers of the Charlotte Observer, posted to Facebook by the Union of Concerned Scientists on May 1, 2020, fair use.
For every 10 minutes of coverage that is coalition of antivaxxers, Nazis, Suburban gun fetishes, Q devotees, and the other slime receive, we should get 90 minutes on unity and death. Mourn the victims. Tell each story.
there are also *other protests happening,* if you really must cover conflict first. there are nurses rallying to demand PPE. there are renters and workers and people demanding prisoners be released. https://t.co/mHYR1z2obH
Journalists have been downplaying leftist movements and the poor for decades. In fact, it is hard to recall a period when these have received their due from the mainstream press. https://t.co/3JZnscWGtH
Greg Palast, “The Downing Street Memos, Manipulation of Prewar Intelligence, and Knowingly Withholding Vital Information from a Grand Jury Investigation,” in Impeach the President, eds. Dennis Loo and Peter Phillips (New York: Seven Stories, 2006), 131-142; Nancy Snow, “Propaganda, Lies, and Patriotic Jingoism,” in Impeach the President, eds. Dennis Loo and Peter Phillips (New York: Seven Stories, 2006), 143-160.↩
Much of what’s in the New York Times article had been previously reported, but there is a little more detail.
The widespread lack of faith in the Iowa results has shaken many Americans’ confidence in their electoral system. Mr. Trump has reveled in the meltdown. Democrats have proposed abolishing caucuses and ending Iowa’s time at the front of the presidential nominating calendar.
Even as party officials scramble to contain the fallout, the full extent of the problems in Iowa is still not known.
The Times doesn’t say so, but folks who work for a living and fans of Scott Adams’ Dilbert cartoon will recognize the pattern. This is meritocracy at its finest. Naturally, we will not be absorbing the larger lessons even in the primary contest, let alone in our system of social organization at large.
An issue is of ethical concern when there is a choice: Do we have alternatives?
On May 5, I will have been vegan for 12 years, despite not liking vegetables. In 2008, I went cold turkey from a “meat and potatoes” diet in which I considered green the color of decay.
Going vegan remains the single most effective action an individual can take to counter the climate crisis and the other forms of environmental catastrophe humans wreak upon the earth. It does so not only in terms of practical action but also in a recognition that this planet, the only planet we have, and the life on it do not exist for our exploitation. The latter rebuts a presumption that leads to pervasive abuse not only of our fellow human beings, but of the environment and of other species.
I don’t care who you are. You have a choice. You need to be doing the right thing for yourself, for your fellow human and non-human animals, and for the environment.
Despite [Binyamin] Netanyahu’s assertion that any immunity would be temporary, his actual request sent to Edelstein indicated otherwise: the prime minister’s lawyers wrote he was asking for functional immunity in one of the three cases against him as well as in certain aspects of another. Functional immunity protects parliamentarians from prosecution for things they did in fulfilling their parliamentary work, and is permanent, rather than temporary. Procedural immunity is temporary, and has to do with offenses committed by a parliamentarian that are unrelated to his parliamentary work.
Just as Donald Trump’s supporters claim that impeachment seeks to overturn the results of the 2016 election, Binyamin Netanyahu claims that the indictments seek to overturn the will of voters, despite the fact that Netanyahu has failed to form a government. It appears unlikely that the Knesset will grant immunity, even once it is able to do so, so the principal effect of this is to stall the indictments.
Correction: Sonoma Clean Power does not own or operate the geothermal plant at the Geysers in Sonoma County. These wells are mostly operated by Calpine. I have removed erroneous text. Also, it appears the Press Democrat story over-emphasized the prospect that Sonoma Clean Power might acquire PG&E’s transmission network in Sonoma County. My mother tells me that the Board was concerned with the possibility that PG&E might be bought out or become something else, and what the ramifications for Sonoma Clean Power, as a subsidiary power seller, would be. There may be a story forthcoming.
Fig. 1. Is this a picture to grab your attention or what? No, this isn’t a disaster about to happen. The original caption: “A helicopter uses a sprayer to wash high tension power line insulators after the Kincade Fire near Pepperwood Preserve.” This photograph is undated and uncredited but the other two in the article, also undated, are attributed to Kent Porter of the Santa Rosa Press-Democrat. Fair use.
There is concern that Pacific Gas and Electric (PG&E), a company with a criminal record, will emerge from bankruptcy under control of a hedge fund.
“Nothing I can think of says, ‘screw the public interest’ like a hedge fund-owned public utility,” [Dave] King said.
So Sonoma Clean Power may seek to acquire PG&E’s transmission network in the county. It is unclear how this would mesh with the possibility that the state will take over the utility.
While I’m no fan of PG&E, I also have to wonder to what extent public ownership will solve a problem whose causes lie not only with corporate malfeasance but also with the climate crisis. And you know how you convince me you’re serious about the latter: Go vegan. Until you’ve done that, you’re really just playing around.
Boris Johnson has threatened to refuse to comply with the law requiring he seek an extension to Brexit. Sound like someone else we know? I mean, this is more explicit—with Donald Trump, on the other hand, it’s more like a denial the law even applies to him.