Links 10/27/2022

Amou Haji, Known as ‘World’s Dirtiest Man,’ Dead at 94 ‘Not Long After’ First Bath in 60 Years People

Cats React to ‘Baby Talk’ From Their Owners, but Not Strangers Smithsonian. Cats: “Owners? Owners?!”

Cats are as good as dogs at helping us beat stress Sky News. Cats: “As good as? As good as?!”

Value Has a Price, But First It Needs to Be Seen John Authers, Bloomberg

Credit Suisse launches $4bn Saudi-backed fundraising FT


The 2022 report of the Lancet Countdown on health and climate change: health at the mercy of fossil fuels The Lancet

Eucatastrophe: Tolkien’s word for the “anti-doomsday” BBC (Furzy Mouse).

Europe’s Meat Habit and the Global Food Crisis Project Syndicate


Blinders On: Wilful ignorance never ends well Dr. Joe Vipond, Speech to United Nurses of Alberta. Resistance to recognizing that COVID-19 is spread by airborne transmission resulted in ‘the most egregious public health error in modern history.”

Cabin fever for cruise ship guests after possible Covid isolation breach Stuff. New Zealand. Everybody hates a tourist.

We May Have Only a Few Months to Prevent the Next Pandemic Craig Spencer, NYT. Nothing on cleaning the air….

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Disinfecting the air with far-ultraviolet light Nature. “But companies aren’t waiting on peer-reviewed research. Far-UV lamp fixtures are already on the market, and being installed around the world.” I’m skeptical, because the incentives (“convenience”) are so obvious. I would think twice before irradiating myself, or others.

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Genetic diversity and evolutionary convergence of cryptic SARS- CoV-2 lineages detected via wastewater sequencing PLOS One. From the Abstract: “[S]everal of the cryptic lineages from New York City appeared to be derived from a common ancestor that most likely diverged in early 2020. While the source of these cryptic lineages has not been resolved, it seems increasingly likely that they were derived from long-term patient infections or animal reservoirs. Our findings demonstrate that SARS-COV-2 genetic diversity is greater than what is commonly observed through routine SARS-CoV-2 surveillance. Wastewater sampling may more fully capture SARS-CoV-2 genetic diversity than patient sampling and could reveal new VOCs before they emerge in the wider human population.”

Acquired immunity against random food allergens may protect some lucky people against Covid-19 Frontiers Science News (original). Big if true.

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What Covid Has Taught the World about Ethics Ezekiel J. Emanuel, Ross E.G. Upshur, and Maxwell J. Smith. NEJM. ” The agencies responsible for responding to public health emergencies need to have trained ethicists on staff, regularly participating in scenario planning and advising.” PMCs gotta PMC.


Cautious US, EU responses to China’s party congress signal widening gulf with West South China Morning Post

China’s Gradual Reform Dilemma The Diplomat

It only takes 24 hours from being infected to infecting people! Guangzhou’s current round of epidemic strains are more infectious What China Reads. BA.5.2. But China doesn’t act like #CovidIsAirborne any more than we do:

Unanimous is a pretty high bar- no country and every single one of its researchers is a monolith. But it’s hard to claim China accepts airborne, when every measure we are taking treats it as droplet. N/K95 are only recommended for HCW, there is no discussion of air quality.

— Naomi Wu 机械妖姬 (@RealSexyCyborg) October 26, 2022

Afraid of needles? China using inhalable COVID-19 vaccine AP. “The inhalable vaccine was developed by Chinese biopharmaceutical company CanSino Biologics Inc. as an aerosol version of the company’s one-shot adenovirus vaccine, which uses a relatively harmless cold virus.” Used as a booster.

The real corporate cost of decoupling is becoming clear FT and The end of the system of the world Noah Smith, Bloomberg. More “decoupling.”


How have Myanmar’s ethnic conflicts evolved since the coup? Al Jazeera


How my family came face to face with settler violence on the road to Nablus 972

European Disunion

The awkward lunch: Macron snubs Scholz in Paris Politico. Deck: “French and German aides say the meeting went well. The lack of a joint press appearance tells a different story.”

European Council and Gomorrah (French media about the risk of an imminent collapse of the European Union) (translation) Aftershock (original). Aggregation and summary of material on the Macron/Scholz meeting.

Finland Willing to Host NATO Nuclear Weapons on Border With Russia (Rev Kev). Rev Kev: “If the balloon goes up, you won’t be able to see the lights of the aurora borealis due to the glowing of Finland.”

Dear Old Blighty

Markets Didn’t Oust Truss. The Bank of England Did. Narayana Kocherlakota, Bloomberg. Commentary:

You’re telling me a sovereign government attempted to chart a new course for the domestic economy, and then faced an immediate backlash from the IMF, White House, central bank, and big finance, and then a month later a Goldman and Stanford alum was put in charge?

— Joe Weisenthal (@TheStalwart) October 26, 2022

Ignore the media hysterics — Britain is not a basket case Izabella Kaminska, Unherd

The NHS is facing the bleakest midwinter BMJ

N.Ireland set for fresh elections over post-Brexit impasse International Business Times

Employer Intimidation Complaints Quadruples in Brazil Ahead of 2022 Election – Poll: Lula Leads 52% – 46% Payday Report

New Not-So-Cold War

Another “progressive” catches heat from constituents on Ukraine?

🇺🇸🇺🇦☢️🇷🇺US Senator Elizabeth Warren had unpleasant meeting with voters and listened to a little unpleasant truth: “Senator, you must stop funding the Ukrainian regime infected with Nahtsees, you are leading us to the brink of nuclear war.”

— AZ 🛰🌏🌍🌎 (@AZgeopolitics) October 27, 2022

I would like to know more about where the audio came from; however — note the background in the photo here — the venue was certainly the Boston Public Library branch in Dorchester on October 25. Readers?

“Most fascinating thing about the Ukraine war is the sheer number of top strategic thinkers who warned for years that it was coming if we continued down the same path.” Arnaud Bertrand, ThreadReader (DD).

Putin Is Onto Us Thomas Friedman, NYT

Ukraine’s President Signs Law Allowing Central Bank to Issue a CBDC Coindesk. From 2021, still germane. Commentary:

Ukrainians have one digital govt app which consolidates all their govt ID in one handy place. It also allows them to contribute many services for the war effort and to receive welfare payments. It’s not quite a CBDC yet but they are well ahead on that too

— Izabella Kaminska (@izakaminska) October 26, 2022

Our fascism incubator already producing good results!

Spooks and the haunting of Russian Area Studies PostSocialism

How the DRC became the battleground of a proxy war over precious resources FT

The Supremes

The Historian’s Case Against the Independent State Legislature Theory (PDF) Boston College Law Review (TW). Moore v. Harper.

Diversity by diktat: An obscure 1977 OMB memo forms the basis for today’s affirmative-action programs SCOTUSblog. “David E. Bernstein holds a university professorship chair at George Mason University’s Antonin Scalia Law School.” Nevertheless:

In pursuing diversity, colleges universally rely on racial classifications derived from the Office of Management and Budget’s 1977 Statistical Directive No. 15. These classifications were never intended to be proxies for educational diversity, but rather to create uniform classifications to make government data collection needed for civil rights enforcement and other matters more consistent and coherent. OMB cautioned that the “classifications should not be interpreted as being scientific or anthropological in nature,” and warned that they should not be “viewed as determinants of eligibility for participation in any Federal program,” such as affirmative-action programs.

Nevertheless, the classifications became the standard used in measuring diversity in higher education.

Classification struggles….

Coordination and expertise foster legal textualism PNAS. “The transition from deference to authority to autonomous reasoning is a major landmark in moral development. In this light, it is interesting how citizens and especially legal experts often heed the letter of the law in detriment of their moral standards during judicial decision making.”

The Bezzle

Exclusive: Tesla faces U.S. criminal probe over self-driving claims Reuters

Elon Musk Shows Up at Twitter HQ With a Porcelain Sink, Which Is His Way Of Saying He’s Serious About Closing Deal SFist

Elon Musk To Cut Twitter Staff To Single Devoted Hunchback Who Laughs Hysterically At All Of Boss’s Genius Tweets The Onion

Andreessen Horowitz Went All In on Crypto at the Worst Possible Time WSJ


Boeing adds 737 MAX 7 to at-risk status with MAX 10 for cancellation over FAA certification Leeham News and Analysis

Imperial Collapse Watch

DOCUMENT: Prologue: The Global Fragility Act, April 2022 Black Agenda Report. If you’ve noticed an uptick in Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity language for imperial ventures lately (“But they’re women fascists”). the “pivot” in this statute could be a driver. Big NGO energy.

Class Warfare


You literally stormed out of the room in the middle of us reading the “Respect and Dignity” contract proposal to yall, so now we’re playing Mario Party & eating lunch waiting for you to come back to our table.

Slay I guess

— Tyler – Starbucks Workers United (@UnionTyler) October 25, 2022

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Mike Davis (1946 –2022): Enemy of the State Verso. Commentary:

RIP Mike Davis

— hannah proctor (@hhnnccnnll) October 26, 2022

Mike Davis, California’s ‘prophet of doom’, on activism in a dying world: ‘Despair is useless’ Guardian

The Petro-bourgeoisie CouchFish. The deck: “Some thoughts on flying, carbon and tourism boards.”

Adult Brain Structure Is Not Fixed: Scientists Discover Depression Treatment Increases Brain Connectivity SciTech (Furzy Mouse).

A woman was arrested for feeding homeless people in Arizona. Now she’s suing the city. USA Today (DCBlogger). DCBlogger: “criminalizng kindness.”

Antidote du jour (via):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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Lambert Strether