2:00PM Water Cooler 9/15/2022 | bare capitalism


Pink-throated Loon, Norðurland eystra, Iceland. Plenty of birds, most very excited. I feel geese and gulls, in addition to the loons?

“However what’s authorities itself, however the best of all reflections on human nature?” –James Madison, Federalist 51

“Right here’s meals for thought, had Ahab time to assume; however Ahab by no means thinks; he solely feels, feels, feels” –Herman Melville, Moby Dick

As regular on monopolies, Stoller nails it:

And:

“Home members roll out bipartisan election invoice geared toward stopping future coups” [The Hill]. “Each payments are geared toward stopping future coup makes an attempt by clarifying the restricted function of the vp in counting Electoral Faculty votes, elevating the edge for members of Congress to object to states’ presidential electors, beefing up legal guidelines round certifying elections for the rightful winner and selling an orderly presidential transition.” • There’s one thing a bit of odd about outlawing a coup…..

“Posse Comitatus, Made Respectable” [John Ganz]. “I’ve come to 2 robust, however I really feel unavoidable, conclusions in regards to the Claremont Institute, the California-based right-wing assume tank that provides Trumpism with its mental cadre: One, that they’re trying the creation of a distinctly American type of fascism that studiously avoids references to European forebears, and two, they’ve develop into primarily a seditious conspiracy towards the American folks. I don’t use this rhetoric flippantly; I understand it will probably sound a bit excessive, even fevered and crankish, however every part else reads like hedging or euphemism. Claremont has performed an instigating and integral half in the entire most authoritarian and menacing parts of the Trump period: from the wild proposals to finish birthright citizenship and abrogate the 14th Modification, to the creation and dissemination of “Cease the Steal Propaganda,” to persistent outreach and legitimation of the extreme-right fringe, after which to offering the spurious authorized structure of the January 6 putsch try. However one of many Institute’s most regarding initiatives but is their “Sheriff’s Fellowship,” a direct effort to bind legislation enforcement to their ideological program. Based in 2021, the Sheriff’s Fellowship goal is described in fairly partisan however nonetheless principally benign-sounding language on the Institute’s website as a high-minded course in political principle and historical past for the native police.” • What may go fallacious…

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#COVID19

• Maskstravaganza: Life’s little ironies:

That is humorous. However, readers, is it true?

• Maskstravaganza: “Invoice Hader Masks Up At Emmys And Followers Can’t Cowl Up Their Approval” [HuffPo]. The deck: “‘We stan a secure king resisting peer strain within the 12 months 2022!’ one particular person tweeted in regards to the “Barry” star.” • True, Hader is immuno-compromised. However I dare to hope some pushback from pro-maskers is having an impact.

• Maskstravaganza: “Experimental Evaluation of Carbon Dioxide Content material in Inhaled Air With or With out Face Masks in Wholesome Kids” [JAMA]. • RETRACTED (if you happen to see anybody quoting it).

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• A really attention-grabbing FOIA, albeit from Canada:

I consider we have now alert reader antidlc is engaged in a similar effort; maybe it will assist.

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“A Disturbing Preprint About Lengthy COVID” [Mike the Mad Biologist]. “Even when we assume that a lot of the noticed impact is both misreporting, ascertainment bias or background noise–and relating to the latter, do we actually assume fifteen p.c of 25-34 12 months previous adults endure from lengthy COVID like signs for another purpose?–it nonetheless would imply one to 2 p.c of individuals endure from fatigue, issue concentrating, or shortness of breath.” • Hmm.

* * *

If you happen to missed it, right here’s a submit on my queasiness with CDC numbers, particularly case depend, which I (nonetheless) take into account most vital, regardless of what Walensky’s psychos at CDC who invented “community levels” assume. However these are the numbers we have now.

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Case Rely

Lambert right here: I assume when Johns Hopkins takes these numbers away, I’m going to must rethink this part.

Case depend for the United States:

Circumstances are undercounted, one supply saying by a factor of six, Gottlieb thinking we only pick up one in seven or eight.) Therefore, I take the nominal case depend and multiply it by six to approximate the actual stage of instances, and draw the DNC-blue “Biden Line” at that time. The earlier depend was ~73,400. Right now, it’s ~70,000 and 70,000 * 6 = a Biden line at 420,000. (Bear in mind these knowledge factors are weekly averages, so each day fluctuations are smoothed out.) The black “Fauci Line” is a counter to triumphalism, because it compares present ranges to previous crises. If you happen to take a look at the Fauci line, you will note that regardless of the bleating and yammering about Covid being “over,” we have now solely only in the near past reached the (nominal) case stage of November 1, 2021, and we’re very removed from that of July 1, 2021. And the actual stage is far worse.

Lambert right here: The autumn in case depend appears spectacular sufficient. What the Fauci Line reveals, nonetheless, is that we have now ultimately achieved the extent of the preliminary peak, when New York was storing the our bodies in fridge vans. So the endzone celebrations are, to my thoughts, untimely. Not that anybody will throw a flag. In fact, the actual story is within the charts for California and the South. See under.

Regional case count for 4 weeks:

The South:

The South (minus Texas and Florida):

South Carolina appears to have halted processing till they’ll determine what’s occurring.

The West:

Wastewater

SITE DOWN Wastewater knowledge (CDC), September 10:

For grins, September 9:

Lambert right here: If the location doens’t load in 5 minutes, it’s not good for something, is it?

Positivity

From the Walgreen’s test positivity tracker, September 9:

2.8%. Ought to be a number one indicator, if Walgreen’s prospects are an sufficient nationwide proxy. Attention-grabbing who’s not (particularly the grain belt) and who’s not.

Transmission

NOTE: I shall most actually not be utilizing the CDC’s new “Community Level” metric. As a result of CDC has mixed a number one indicator (instances) with a lagging one (hospitalization) their new metric is a poor warning signal of a surge, and a poor strategy to assess private threat. As well as, Covid is a illness you don’t wish to get. Even if you’re not hospitalized, you possibly can endure from Lengthy Covid, vascular points, and neurological points. For these causes, case counts — recognized to be underestimated, as a consequence of house take a look at kits — deserve to face alone as a quantity to be tracked, irrespective of how a lot the political operatives in CDC management want to obfuscate it. That the “inexperienced map” (which Topol calls a “capitulation” and a “deception”) remains to be up and being taken severely verges on the felony. Use the neighborhood transmission instantly under.

Right here is CDC’s interactive map by county set to neighborhood transmission. (That is the map CDC wants only hospitals to look at, not you.)

NOT UPDATED Fast Riser knowledge, by county (CDC), September 9:

I suppose that if case counts are certainly stage, it’s seemingly there can be few speedy risers.

Earlier Fast Riser knowledge:

NOT UPDATED Hospitalization knowledge, by state (CDC), September 14:

Sea of inexperienced!

NOTE: Fast Riser and Hospitalization knowledge are up to date Wednesdays and Fridays.

Variants

Lambert right here: It’s past irritating how sluggish the variant knowledge is. I seemed for extra charts: California doesn’t to a BA.4/BA.5 breakdown. New York does but it surely, too, is on a molasses-like two-week cycle. Does no one within the public well being institution get a promotion for monitoring variants? Are there no grants? Is there a single lab that does this work, and all people will get the outcomes from them? Extra sources from readers welcome [grinds teeth, bangs head on desk].

Variant knowledge, nationwide (Walgreens), September 1:

Nonetheless no signal of BA.2.75 at Walgreens, regardless of its success in India and presence in Bay Area wastewater.

NOT UPDATED Variant knowledge, nationwide (CDC), August 20 (Nowcast off):

Nonetheless no signal of BA.2.75. I checked out all of the areas, too.

BA.2.75 in Ontario and Quebec, Canada:

Deaths

Demise charge (Our World in Data):

Lambert right here: It’s attention-grabbing that the deaths per 100,000 curve — with its curious latest flattening — has roughly the identical form because the case curve, suggesting {that a} “Biden Curve” would have roughly the identical form because the case depend curve, versus the straight line I’m drawing for the present stage.

Total: 1,077,477 – 1,076,343 = 1134 (1134 * 365 = 413,910, which is right now’s LivingWith™* quantity (fairly a bit greater than the minimizers would love, thought they’ll speak themselves into something. Fluctuates fairly a bit, however even the low numbers are unhealthy). I’ve added an anti-triumphalist black Fauci Line.

It’s good that for deaths I’ve a easy, each day chart that simply retains chugging alongside, not like every part else CDC and the White Home are screwing up or letting go darkish, good job.

Stats Watch

Employment State of affairs: “United States Preliminary Jobless Claims” [Trading Economics]. “The variety of People submitting new claims for unemployment advantages decreased by 5 thousand to 213,000 within the week that ended September tenth, effectively under market expectations of 226,000. It was the bottom variety of weekly jobless claims for the reason that remaining week of Could, highlighting a decent labor market and giving the Fed extra space for aggressive rate of interest hikes.”

Manufacturing: “United States Philadelphia Fed Manufacturing Index” [Trading Economics]. “The Philadelphia Fed Manufacturing Index within the US fell to -9.9 in September of 2022 from 6.2 in August, lacking market expectations of two.8. The indicator for present exercise returned to detrimental territory, the brand new orders index remained detrimental, and the shipments index additionally declined however remained constructive.”

Manufacturing: “United States NY Empire State Manufacturing Index” [Trading Economics]. “The New York Empire State Manufacturing Index climbed 30 factors to -1.5 in August 2022, beating market expectations of -13. New orders elevated, and shipments expanded considerably. Supply instances have been regular whereas inventories picked up. Labor market indicators pointed to a modest improve in employment and no change within the common workweek.”

Manufacturing: “United States Industrial Manufacturing” [Trading Economics]. “Industrial Manufacturing in the USA elevated 3.70 p.c year-on-year in August of 2022. It’s the smallest annual improve in seven months.”

* * *

The Bezzle:

Yeah, the place are the web3 bros? It’s gone quiet instantly.

The Bezzle: “‘Scary simple. Sketchy as hell.’: How startups are pushing Adderall on TikTok” [Vox]. • Ugh, however onerous to get enthusiastic about TikTok after what Massive Pharma and the college programs have alread executed.

Tech: “Google’s ‘Relaxation and Vest’ Days for Senior Workers Are Over, Says the CEO. It’s a Sensible Concept” [Inc.]. “With looming recessions and inflationary pressures, there’s rising concern of slower progress and fiercer competitors. On the convention, Pichai talked about TikTok and different entrants within the Chinese language market. Issues that they didn’t have to consider two years in the past are instantly changing into actual points for the massive weapons. There will likely be a lot of options put in place to search out efficiencies and climate this financial downtown. One of many approaches simply could also be a concerted effort in uncovering the resters-and-vesters and calling them out. Or eliminating them altogether.” • If you happen to assume Google sucks now, simply wait ’til the coders don’t get free lunches and massages any extra.

The Bezzle:

And one other:

My reply would have been: “Sufficient suckers.”

* * *

Right now’s Worry & Greed Index: 42 Worry (earlier shut: 41 Impartial) [CNN]. One week in the past: 41 (Worry). (0 is Excessive Worry; 100 is Excessive Greed). Final up to date Sep 15 at 1:37 PM EDT.

Bible Nook

“Archaeologists Uncover Pink Pens Gospel Writers Used To Write Phrases Of Christ” [Babylon Bee]. “‘Bible students have been trying to find this for hundreds of years,’ stated head archaeologist Dr. Max Macon. ‘We knew that if the New Testomony report is reliable, then the pink pens the gospel writers used to jot down the phrases of Christ needed to be round right here someplace. And now we as soon as once more have the Bible’s account confirmed to be 100% dependable.’”

The 420

“How Weed Grew to become the New OxyContin” [The Tablet]. “Within the period of legalized weed, the drug you consider as ‘hashish’ can hardly be referred to as marijuana in any respect. The sorts of hashish merchandise which are bought on-line and at dispensaries comprise no precise plant matter. They’re made by placing pulverized marijuana right into a tube and operating butane, propane, ethanol, or carbon dioxide by it, which separates the THC from the remainder of the plant. The tip product is a wax that may be 70% to 80% THC. That wax can then be put in a vacuum oven and additional concentrated into oils which are as a lot as 95% and even 99% THC. Often known as ‘dabs,’ that is what folks put of their vape pens, and in states like California and Colorado it’s completely authorized and simply out there to youngsters. ‘There aren’t any caps on efficiency,’ stated Stack. If you happen to’re over 30 years previous and also you used to smoke weed once you have been a teen, the strongest you have been smoking was most likely 20% THC. Right now, youngsters are ‘dabbing’ a product that’s three, 4, or 5 instances stronger, and are sometimes doing so a number of instances a day. At that stage of efficiency, the affect of the drug on a consumer’s mind belongs to a completely totally different class of threat than smoking a joint or taking a bong rip of even an intensively bred marijuana flower. It’s extremely addictive, and over time, there’s a major probability it will probably drive you insane.” • I’m not seeing any hyperlinks in that final sentence, and the entire thing reads like “Reefer Insanity” yet again:

That stated, it was predictable that corporatizing hashish — actually not the imaginative and prescient I had of “legalization,” again within the day — would convey ailing results. OxyContin stage results? I’d must see extra proof. Readers, has anybody… heard in regards to the results of the brand new “merchandise”?

Our Famously Free Press

Hmm:

The Gallery

The restrict case of a queue:

Class Warfare

“Financial reflections on the Fall of Constantinople” [globalinequality]. “The studying of Jap Mediterranean historical past is extraordinarily instructive for a manner during which we should always consider commerce. A benevolent method, beginning with Ricardo, at all times regarded commerce as an exercise freely undertaken by two events with no extra-economic compulsion. No reader of historical past of the Jap Roman Empire can share that view. Commerce and navy underpinning of it went hand-in-hand. That is at its most blatant not in giant empires which anyway needed to have armies however in buying and selling city-states like Venice and Genoa. If you happen to consider that commerce is all about peace there can be no purpose why these city-states needed to keep giant naval fleets, combat battles, conquer islands, negotiate, underneath navy menace, particular rights to tariff-free imports and exports. Commerce, debt and the military at all times moved collectively. No vacationer to any Greek island right now will fail to watch giant Venetian and Genoan fortresses that would not have been constructed with out cash and labor but additionally with out a naval presence that allowed the management or conquest of the islands within the first place.”

Information of the Wired

“How one can nurture a private library” [Psyche]. “Many people develop our collections on a book-by-book foundation: a quantity catches our curiosity in a bookstore, we purchase and browse it, stick it on a shelf, and repeat. Considering like a librarian is about taking a step again to contemplate your assortment as an entire, together with what you add to it and why. A well-tended library is sort of a panorama, with its valley of crime novels, its peaks of reference texts, its shores of memoirs. Collectively, all these particular person titles develop into a part of one thing larger, type one thing with emergent properties, one thing completely distinctive to you.”

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Contact info for vegetation: Readers, be at liberty to contact me at lambert [UNDERSCORE] strether [DOT] corrente [AT] yahoo [DOT] com, to (a) learn how to ship me a verify if you’re allergic to PayPal and (b) to learn how to ship me photographs of vegetation. Greens are nice! Fungi and coral are deemed to be honorary vegetation! If you’d like your deal with to look as a credit score, please place it at the beginning of your mail in parentheses: (thus). In any other case, I’ll anonymize through the use of your initials. See the earlier Water Cooler (with plant) here. From TH:

TH writes: “This doesn’t appear like fairly just like the Fowl of Paradise I see throughout California, together with in my yard, however that’s the identify I’m going with. It’s within the greenhouse on the Sherman Library and Gardens in Newport Seashore, California.”

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