Home Economics 2:00PM Water Cooler 2/20/2024 | bare capitalism

2:00PM Water Cooler 2/20/2024 | bare capitalism

2:00PM Water Cooler 2/20/2024 | bare capitalism


By Lambert Strether of Corrente.

Affected person readers, I received wrapped across the axle on Trump’s fraud case in New York, so the remainder of Water Cooler is a bit skinny. Extra shortly. –lambert

Fowl Tune of the Day

Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Walla Walla; Lewis Peak Rd., Washington, United States. “Tune. Chatter name.”

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“So most of the social reactions that strike us as psychological are in actual fact a rational administration of symbolic capital.” –Pierre Bourdieu, Classification Struggles

The Constitutional Order (Eighth Modification)

I hate so as to add one other matter to the Structure Order part, however right here we’re…

The Eighth Modification:

Extreme bail shall not be required, nor extreme fines imposed, nor merciless and strange punishments inflicted.


In 1998, nonetheless, the Court docket injected vitality into the strictures of the clause. “The touchstone of the constitutional inquiry beneath the Extreme Fines Clause is the precept of proportionality: The quantity of the forfeiture should bear some relationship to the gravity of the offense that it’s designed to punish.” In United States v. Bajakajian, the federal government sought to require {that a} legal defendant charged with violating federal reporting necessities relating to the transportation of greater than $10,000 in forex in a foreign country forfeit the forex concerned, which totaled $357,144. The Court docket held that the forfeiture on this explicit case violated the Extreme Fines Trigger as a result of the quantity forfeited was ‘grossly disproportionate to the gravity of defendant’s offense.’ In figuring out proportionality, the Court docket didn’t restrict itself to a comparability of the high quality quantity to the confirmed offense, but it surely additionally thought-about the actual info of the case, the character of the defendant, and the hurt attributable to the offense.

NOTE See the fabric under. Engoron’s penalty appears so clearly extreme it could possibly be grounds for enchantment, however IANAL and no enchantment has really been filed. If in actual fact no Constitutional points are concerned, I’ll transfer this story to the Trump part beneath marketing campaign 2024, with the remainder of the lawfare stuff.

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“New York vs. Donald Trump, et al.” [New York Times] (PDF). • The Instances annotates the total textual content. I can’t discover a correct quotation for the case, in order that title is my finest try.

“Right here’s a glance inside Donald Trump’s $355 million civil fraud verdict” [Associated Press]. “Engoron dominated that Trump engaged in a yearslong conspiracy with prime executives at his firm, the Trump Group, to deceive banks and insurers concerning the measurement of his wealth and the true worth of such properties as Trump Tower in Manhattan and his Mar-a-Lago membership in Florida…. Engoron determined the case as a result of state legislation doesn’t enable for juries in one of these lawsuit, which sought what’s often known as “equitable aid” and has totally different guidelines than different instances with big-money penalties. Additionally, he famous, neither facet requested for a jury.” Extra: “Engoron discovered that Trump’s phony wealth claims have been vital to his success, affording him decrease mortgage rates of interest [see Engoron’s opinion, starting at page 46, the “Expert Witnesses” section]. and permitting him to construct initiatives he wouldn’t have in any other case been capable of end. The choose decided that these financial savings and windfall income have been ‘ill-gotten positive aspects’ and ordered him and his co-defendants to cough them as much as the state, with curiosity.” And: “Trump and his attorneys have stated that outdoors accountants that helped put together his monetary statements ought to’ve flagged any discrepancies and that the paperwork got here with disclaimers that shielded him from legal responsibility. They are saying Trump by no means instructed anybody to inflate the worth of property and that, if there have been discrepancies, nobody was harmed. ‘There have been no victims as a result of the banks made some huge cash,’ Trump stated Friday, echoing his trial testimony in November. Trump testified that no matter what his monetary statements stated, banks did their very own due diligence and would’ve certified him for the loans anyway. He stated there’s no proof that the phrases or pricing would have been any totally different.” • Good to see that New York Actual Property has been purged of its one unhealthy actor! At the least, that’s Governor Hochul’s concept–

“Hochul tells NY companies to not worry about Trump verdict: ‘Nothing to fret about’” [The Hill]. Hochul: “I feel that that is actually a unprecedented, uncommon circumstance that the law-abiding and rule-following New Yorkers who’re enterprise folks don’t have anything to fret about, as a result of they’re very totally different than Donald Trump and his conduct.” • So that is kinda like a invoice of attainder? Aimed toward one particular person?

“Obscene award towards Trump is testing the New York authorized system’s integrity” [Jonathan Turley, The Hill]. “The one hope for New York companies often is the U.S. Supreme Court docket. Regardless of the deference afforded to the states and their courts, the court docket has sometimes intervened to dam extreme harm awards. For instance, in 1996, the justices restricted state-awards of punitive damages beneath the Due Course of Clause of the Fourteenth Modification. In that case, BMW was discovered to have repainted luxurious vehicles broken in transit with out telling consumers. An Alabama jury awarded $4,000 in compensatory damages for the lack of worth in having a manufacturing unit paint job, however then added $4 million in punitive damages. Even when the Alabama Supreme Court docket lowered that to $2 million, the U.S. Supreme Court docket nonetheless discovered it extreme. Even liberals on the Court docket comparable to John Paul Stevens and Stephen Breyer agreed that such ‘grossly extreme’ awards elevate a ‘primary unfairness of depriving residents of life, liberty, or property, by the appliance of arbitrary coercion.’ The court docket could discover virtually half a billion {dollars} in damages with out a single misplaced greenback from a sufferer to be a tad extreme.”

“Explainer: How will Trump pay his $355 million civil fraud judgment?” [Reuters]. “The previous president’s funds are opaque, however Forbes estimates his web price at $2.6 billion, most of it tied up in actual property. Trump testified in an April deposition that he had roughly $400 million in money. Although he might promote components of his portfolio to fulfill the judgment, it’s unclear how a lot his property holdings are price, given the headwinds within the industrial actual property sector…. [Engoron’s] ban on making use of for loans from banks registered or chartered in New York might severely limit Trump’s capability to boost money…. Trump’s portfolio might see a serious windfall if he have been to promote his stake in his social media platform Fact Social, the worth of which has soared as his bid to return to the White Home gathers steam. Trump’s stake within the firm, Trump Media & Know-how Group, is now price about $4 billion, primarily based on buying and selling within the shares of a black-check acquisition car that has agreed to merge with it. If the deal closes, Trump would be capable of promote his shares within the mixed firm six months later.”

“Trump ruling defined: How the $355M judgment would possibly have an effect on his companies” [ABC]. “Trump is anticipated to enchantment the judgment. He has two avenues to take action. First, on the Appellate Division after which on the New York State Court docket of Appeals. That may take time and will imply the case received’t be put to mattress till 2025 on the earlieBut he can’t postpone paying the $355 million plus curiosity. It’s going to primarily have to be saved in escrow in the course of the appeals course of to make sure the plaintiff will get the cash Engoron ordered if his full judgment is upheld. It’s not clear the place it’s going to come from. Trump, who claimed final 12 months to have $400 million in money, might put it up himself if his assertion is true. Nevertheless it’s additionally the case that he’s dealing with one other hefty $83.3 million verdict within the civil trial he not too long ago misplaced to E. Jean Carroll. So he might search to borrow cash and use an enormous asset (e.g., one among his buildings) as collateral. Provided that Engoron’s ruling bars him from getting a mortgage from any monetary establishment registered in New York – which probably guidelines out most main worldwide banks with workplaces in New York, Thomas famous – that will imply he would want to get a private mortgage from a non-financial establishment or an unregistered monetary firm. Or he would possibly have to get assist from a really excessive web price particular person, who additionally could search a Trump enterprise asset as collateral to safe the mortgage.”

“Unique: Donald Trump To Problem Decide Engoron’s Fraud Definition” [Newsweek]. “The enchantment hinges on the definition of fraud used within the case. Professor Greg Germain of Syracuse College of Regulation instructed Newsweek that on enchantment, Trump must present that the New York legal professional common doesn’t have the facility to punish him ‘with out displaying the normal parts of fraud: (1) scienter—principally intent to defraud, (2) false statements of reality reasonably than opinion or commerce puffing, (3) affordable reliance by the victims, (4) materiality, (5) causation, and (6) damages.’ ‘I feel he has a robust argument that when the legal professional common seeks to punish for previous use, reasonably than stop future use, she must present the entire conventional parts of fraud,’ he added. Nevertheless, James’ staff will argue that, beneath New York govt order 63.12, which provides the legal professional common her energy to prosecute fraud, she doesn’t have to point out that every one six parts are current. Govt order 63.12 was established in 1956 and offers the legal professional common with broad authority to situation subpoenas and pursue civil fraud allegations with comparatively low authorized hurdles. ‘Decide Engoron dominated within the abstract judgment order that, beneath 63.12, the legal professional common doesn’t have to point out any of these parts—a displaying of falsity is sufficient, Germain stated. He stated that, had the court docket utilized the total six-part definition of fraud, it might have discovered little or no proof that the banks had a ‘affordable reliance’ on Trump’s statements. ‘The proof of affordable reliance [on Trump’s financial statements] by the ‘victims’ may be very weak’ and could also be grounds of enchantment,’ Germain stated. A banking official instructed the trial that he didn’t not solely depend on Trump’s statements when assessing a mortgage software and that the financial institution made its personal calculations.” • So, all that’s required, based on Legal professional Basic James, is “a displaying of falsity.” Is Hochul actually claiming that the “law-abiding and rule-following New Yorkers who’re enterprise folks” have by no means made any false statements when making actual property offers?


Lower than a 12 months to go!

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Trump (R): “The Massive Factor About Trump’s Presidency That Staff Biden Must Get” [Michael Tomasky, The New Republic]. “For me and for many of my mates—and I’m guessing for you—the Trump presidency was day by day hell for 4 years…. The ache and outrage by no means let up till shortly earlier than midday on January 20, 2021. That was life inside my bubble. And that was life contained in the bubbles of nearly all loyal Democrats and/or dedicated members of the broad left for these four-plus years.” Love the framing, “loyal Democrats.” Extra: “Outdoors our bubble, although, issues regarded totally different. I’m not speaking about MAGA America. These of us, we all know all about. I’m speaking concerning the folks in between. They’re the individuals who’ll resolve this election. And this election 12 months, these of us inside our bubble have to go put our heads inside theirs. As a result of the place they dwell, unbelievable as this will likely appear to you and me, the Trump years have been good, and he was a reasonably succesful president.” Trump removed the ObamaCare mandate, saving me — coincidentally sufficient — 600 bucks on my taxes. Extra: “[W]hy would folks carry a fond reminiscence of a presidential time period that many people take into account to have been far and away the worst in American historical past? As a result of the economic system dominates folks’s ideas alongside these traces, and till the pandemic, the economic system beneath Trump was fairly good, at the least within the methods we measure this stuff. Yet another statistic: the median family revenue quantity in 2019. Median family revenue rose steadily in the course of the Obama years after the meltdown. A thousand right here, three thousand there. That’s the way it normally goes, traditionally. However from 2018 to 2019, . And greater than that: It rose extra within the lowest quintile than within the highest. Much more.” • Then, after all, there was the CARES Act, which put a big dent in poverty in the course of the pandemic, and which Biden promptly dismantled. And say what you want about Trump, he wasn’t a warmonger.

Trump (R): “Rightwing mega-donors drift again to Trump as election rematch looms” [Guardian]. “Donald Trump’s efforts to court docket and cajole rightwing billionaires into financing his presidential marketing campaign are bearing fruit as even sceptical conservative mega-donors withstand the prospect he’ll once more be the Republican candidate…. Trump’s marketing campaign is pushing the inevitability of his victory over the previous South Carolina governor Nikki Haley, the final remaining challenger within the Republican primaries, so as to shift the main focus to the final election as he pursues Wall Avenue and Silicon Valley cash. Trump efficiently wooed the most important donor to the Florida governor Ron DeSantis’s failed presidential marketing campaign throughout a go to to Las Vegas final month, the billionaire developer Robert Bigelow. After assembly Trump after which becoming a member of his motorcade by Las Vegas to a political rally, Bigelow pledged $20m to the previous president’s marketing campaign – the identical quantity he gave to DeSantis – together with one other $1m towards the mounting prices of his myriad authorized issues. Trump additionally received commitments from different well-heeled donors on the Las Vegas journey whereas the billionaire investor John Paulson held a dinner for the previous president and main Republican occasion contributors earlier this month, based on Politico.” • Reversion to the meanest…..

Trump (R): “Trump allies put together to infuse ‘Christian nationalism’ in second administration” [Politico]. “An influential assume tank near Donald Trump is growing plans to infuse Christian nationalist concepts in his administration ought to the previous president return to energy, based on paperwork obtained by POLITICO. Spearheading the hassle is Russell Vought, who served as Trump’s director of the Workplace of Administration and Finances throughout his first time period and has remained near him. Vought, who’s regularly cited as a possible chief of employees in a second Trump White Home, is president of The Middle for Renewing America assume tank, a number one group in a conservative consortium making ready for a second Trump time period…. One doc drafted by CRA employees and fellows features a record of prime priorities for CRA in a second Trump time period. “Christian nationalism” is without doubt one of the bullet factors. Others embody invoking the Revolt Act on Day One to quash protests and refusing to spend approved congressional funds on undesirable initiatives, a apply banned by lawmakers within the Nixon period…. Vought, who declined to remark, is advising Venture 2025, a governing agenda that might usher in one of the conservative govt branches in trendy American historical past. The hassle is made up of a constellation of conservative teams run by Trump allies who’ve constructed an in depth plan to dismantle or overhaul key businesses in a second time period. Amongst different ideas, the undertaking’s ‘Mandate for Management‘ states that ‘freedom is outlined by God, not man.’” • An, “Mandate for Management.” In 2004, Bush the Youthful prattled about his mandate. Google bombing was nonetheless doable, again within the day, so I organized for Mandate journal to be the highest hit for a search on “Bush Mandate”; a gentleman carrying a sailor’s cap, if I recall. I hope the identical factor occurs to those guys, besides lots worse.

Trump (R): “The Actual Problem of Trump 2.0” [Foreign Affairs]. “whereas out of energy, Trump’s staff has achieved the transition work it didn’t do the primary time round; they are going to be empowered by a remodeled Republican Get together and are available geared up with a really detailed record of mates and foes—and thus be higher positioned to bend bureaucratic politics to their will…. within the few areas the place slow-rolling and end-running and different regular bureaucratic gimmicks have been used to thwart a decided Trumpian coverage flourish, the paucity of true-believing MAGA warriors at each stage of the paperwork made it tough for Trump to have his whims fulfilled. It’s removed from clear that there shall be such guardrails this time round.” • Yeah, thank God the adults within the room stopped Trump from eradicating our colonial outposts in Syria!

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Biden (D): “Joe the Rainmaker? Funds, offers adopted key Biden conferences with son’s international associates” [Just the News]. “Proof together with sworn impeachment inquiry testimony, confirmed emails and monetary data more and more present that President Joe Biden’s conferences together with his son’s international shoppers have been carefully adopted by funds and agreements that superior his household’s enterprise offers. Home Republicans on Thursday subpoenaed new monetary data belonging to Hunter Biden, his associates, and firms in a rising effort to seek out proof that Joe Biden benefited personally from his son’s international dealings. Rep. Greg Steube agreed on the ‘Simply the Information, No Noise’ tv present on Thursday that Joe Biden performed a “rainmaker” position in Hunter Biden’s enterprise ventures. ‘We’ve recognized that every one alongside and now we’re getting corroborating witness testimony,’ Steube stated. ‘Fortunately, for the subpoenas which have been issued to the monetary establishments, we now have monetary proof of the cash that was laundered from the Chinese language Communist Get together or Russian oligarchs, or the Ukrainian authorities and entities by the Biden relations, his brother, James Biden, and Hunter Biden.’ ‘And we all know that clearly, Joe Biden was the impetus behind all of that,’ Steube claimed.” “Claimed,” certainly. “Clearly” is doing a variety of work, there. Personally, I feel all that’s wanted is to point out that the Biden clan benefitted, not Biden personally. All these financial institution accounts, all these loans; an enormous river of Biden money, with many tributaries, some fairly small.

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IL: “Boy, 5, dies after contracting COVID, Strep and a pair of different viruses: ‘An excessive amount of for slightly physique’” [Today]. “A 5-year-old boy in Chicago who was staying at a migrant shelter has died of sepsis, which developed after he contracted COVID-19 and Strep A.” • Submitting this right here as a substitute beneath Immune Dysregulation in Covid, as a result of Chicago is in Pritzker’s patch, and it appears like his migrant shelters are hellholes.

IL: “Metropolis releases assertion after boy dies, others hospitalized following sickness at migrant shelter” [NBC Chicago]. “Monday, a spokesperson with the Chicago Fireplace Division stated that ‘a number of’ different people on the shelter, the place about 2,000 folks have been staying, required hospitalization, together with a 1-year-old woman and a 4-year-old woman. An 18-year-old lady was additionally hospitalized early Monday, hearth officers stated. In accordance with a Chicago Division of Public Well being spokesperson, there have been reported instances of Varicella, generally often known as chickenpox, in each kids and adults on the Pilsen shelter.” • Nothing about measles. But. Higher repair this earlier than the Democrat Nationwide Conference August 19!

Realignment and Legitimacy

“6 Guidelines for Truly Altering Folks’s Minds” [Strong Towns]. “Everyone knows on some stage that there’s an enormous distinction between being proper and being convincing. But in apply, a variety of us are assured within the former however unstrategic concerning the latter. Once we discover that being proper in a public discussion board is just not sufficient to deliver folks round, we reply by making an attempt to be proper extra forcefully, aggressively, or exasperatedly. Outcomes are predictably poor…. 1. Persons are persuaded by tales, not by info… 2. The unfold of beliefs is a social course of, not a person one…. 3. Our minds are modified by trusted messengers…. 4. No person trusts a jerk (besides the jerk who’s already on their facet)…. 5. Our elementary beliefs are modified little by little, not unexpectedly…. 6. Social consensus is much less stable than it appears.” Extra on level 6: “What seems to be a monolithic consensus usually isn’t: reasonably, it’s a handful of loud voices in a suggestions loop with one another, and plenty of others who fall someplace between passive gentle settlement and selecting to simply keep quiet. Arguing immediately with the loudest and most demagogic contributors in such a neighborhood—and thus with the obvious social consensus—doesn’t work very nicely. So what does? How do you begin to shift that social consensus in the event you assume that there’s a complete neighborhood that has received one thing principally unsuitable? You begin to crack open some doorways. Level out issues that aren’t at 180-degree odds with the bulk view, however that complicate it or introduce nuance. Level out a perspective that isn’t normally heard (these of renters in a dialog dominated by owners; these of people that stroll or use wheelchairs or strollers in a dialog dominated by drivers). Don’t be preachy or obnoxious about it. Don’t act such as you’re making an attempt to win a debate. Do it with an consciousness of the core narratives of the house you’re in. Do it in a manner that one or two of the group’s trusted messengers—those that are outstanding voices but additionally seem amenable to nuance and disagreement—will hear you as a principally pleasant countervailing voice.” • Hmm.


“I’m in earnest — I can’t equivocate — I can’t excuse — I can’t retreat a single inch — AND I WILL BE HEARD.” –William Lloyd Garrison

Assets, United States (Nationwide): Transmission (CDC); Wastewater (CDC, Biobot; consists of many counties; Wastewater Scan, consists of drilldown by zip); Variants (CDC; Walgreens); “Iowa COVID-19 Tracker” (in IA, however nationwide knowledge). “An infection Management, Emergency Administration, Security, and Basic Ideas” (particularly on hospitalization by metropolis).

Lambert right here: Readers, thanks for the collective effort. To replace any entry, do be happy to contact me on the tackle given with the crops. Please put “COVID” within the topic line. Thanks!

Assets, United States (Native): AK (dashboard); AL (dashboard); AR (dashboard); AZ (dashboard); CA (dashboard; Marin, dashboard; Stanford, wastewater; Oakland, wastewater); CO (dashboard; wastewater); CT (dashboard); DE (dashboard); FL (wastewater); GA (wastewater); HI (dashboard); IA (wastewater studies); ID (dashboard, Boise; dashboard, wastewater, Central Idaho; wastewater, Coeur d’Alene; dashboard, Spokane County); IL (wastewater); IN (dashboard); KS (dashboard; wastewater, Lawrence); KY (dashboard, Louisville); LA (dashboard); MA (wastewater); MD (dashboard); ME (dashboard); MI (wastewater; wastewater); MN (dashboard); MO (wastewater); MS (dashboard); MT (dashboard); NC (dashboard); ND (dashboard; wastewater); NE (dashboard); NH (wastewater); NJ (dashboard); NM (dashboard); NV (dashboard; wastewater, Southern NV); NY (dashboard); OH (dashboard); OK (dashboard); OR (dashboard); PA (dashboard); RI (dashboard); SC (dashboard); SD (dashboard); TN (dashboard); TX (dashboard); UT (wastewater); VA (dashboard); VT (dashboard); WA (dashboard; dashboard); WI (wastewater); WV (wastewater); WY (wastewater).

Assets, Canada (Nationwide): Wastewater (Authorities of Canada).

Assets, Canada (Provincial): ON (wastewater); QC (les eaux usées); BC (wastewater); BC, Vancouver (wastewater).

Hat tricks to useful readers: Alexis, anon (2), Art_DogCT, B24S, CanCyn, ChiGal, Chuck L, Festoonic, FM, FreeMarketApologist (4), Gumbo, hop2it, JB, JEHR, JF, JL Joe, John, JM (10), JustAnotherVolunteer, JW, KatieBird, LL, Michael King, KF, LaRuse, mrsyk, MT, MT_Wild, otisyves, Petal (6), RK (2), RL, RM, Rod, sq. coats (11), tennesseewaltzer, Tom B., Utah, Bob White (3).

Keep protected on the market!

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Search for the Helpers

“Information analyst Greg Travis speaks on COVID pandemic-related extra deaths within the US” [WSWS]. “One of many vital byproducts of the ‘without end COVID’ insurance policies applied by the ruling elites, abandoning any combat towards the pandemic and even dismantling monitoring of COVID instances by public well being businesses, has been the emergence of a layer of principled well being care specialists, knowledge analysts and researchers who’re offering real-time data on the precise state of the pandemic. The COVID-19 an infection trackers maintained by Dr. Mike Hoerger and knowledge scientist Jay Weiland, with modeling primarily based on wastewater ranges of SARS-CoV-2, have documented the large scale of infections which have been sweeping throughout america and the remainder of the world. Their weekly studies underscore the persevering with excessive charges of day by day infections, giving a glimpse into the general public well being disaster that’s happening beneath a whole media blackout of the pandemic. Viral sleuths like Ryan Hisner, Raj Rajnarayanan and others have turned to their social media channels, which operate as data hubs to build up data on the newest subvariants and their mutations. A lot of their preliminary studies, comparable to on Pirola in August after which JN.1 in September 2023, have been vital in giving the world a substantive alert on the large wave of infections that has since washed over the globe, whereas nationwide public businesses just like the US Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention (CDC) have been taking pains to cowl up these developments.” • That is completely terrific and a should learn (though I feel “layer” is, analytically, the unsuitable phrase. Ditto “by-product”; hardly dialectical).


“Transmission of Viruses from Restroom Use: A Quantitative Microbial Threat Evaluation” [Food and Environmental Virology]. From the Dialogue: “Restrooms have been implicated as a supply of hepatitis A, norovirus, and SARS-CoV-2 outbreaks, and contamination of restroom fomites has been documented in a number of research (Abney et al., 2021). A number of routes of publicity throughout restroom use can happen, comparable to accumulation of pathogens on the physique and garments of the consumer by aerosolization throughout rest room flushing, direct inhalation of aerosols, or oblique transmission following deposition of aerosolized pathogens on varied surfaces all through the restroom (from use of face towels, contaminated cleaning soap bars, or different high-touch surfaces, comparable to rest room lid, flush deal with, taps, door handles, and so on.)” Be aware that the Summary doesn’t point out “inhalation” (!). However restrooms are 3Cs areas, in order that’s an apparent route of transmission:

They even combine “inhalation” and “hand contamination” in Determine 1. Dudes, fomites aren’t like aerosols!

“Who We Are” [Global Handwashing Partnership]. “The International Handwashing Partnership is a coalition of worldwide stakeholders who work explicitly to advertise handwashing with cleaning soap and acknowledge hygiene as a pillar of worldwide growth and public well being.” • Proctor and Gamble, Johnson, Colgate-Palmolive… Cleaning soap makes and a gaggle of NGOs (not together with Pontius Pilate or Woman Macbeth. Too unhealthy). Now, I’m all for handwashing. Handwashing is sweet! However the distinction to wash air is absolutely heartbreaking.

Elite Maleficence

Tedros is a mendacity weasel on airborne, and this thread has him lifeless to rights:

“Governor Hochul proposes ending COVID-19 Sick Depart Regulation” [ABC]. “Governor Kathy Hochul has proposed eliminating the state’s COVID-19 sick go away legislation in her proposed state funds. The legislation went into impact in 2020. It requires employers to supply COVID sick go away for workers beneath necessary or precautionary order of quarantine. It might finish July thirty first. The Governor’s proposal says one of many causes is as a result of quarantine necessities have modified. Her workplace launched a press release saying, ‘New York State has one of many nation’s strongest paid sick go away insurance policies, offering most workers with as much as 56 hours of paid sick go away every year, and Governor Hochul’s FY25 govt funds consists of further expansions of medical and incapacity go away.’ The Enterprise Council of New York helps the proposal. ‘We perceive the pandemic continues to be with us,’ stated Frank Kerbein, Director of the Middle for Human Assets on the Enterprise Council of New York State. ‘There’s nonetheless people that suffer from COVID. On the identical time in 2020 the state handed a brand new necessary paid sick go away that every one employers have to supply 40 or 56 hours of pay day off for workers. That is sufficient. We really feel that is sufficient now to assist workers who’re nonetheless impacted by COVID.’” • CA provides 40 hours

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TABLE 1: Every day Covid Charts


1) for charts new as we speak; all others will not be up to date.

2) For a full-size/full-resolution picture, Command-click (MacOS) or right-click (Home windows) on the chart thumbnail and “open picture in new tab.”


[1] (Biobot) Once more, no backward revisions. The uptick is actual (at the least to Biobot). Be aware this anomaly:

Appears like Covid won’t be seasonal? Who knew? Hoerger feedback:

[2] (Biobot) Right here, FWIW, is Verily regional knowledge as of February 20. CDC Area 1:

And Area 2:

Verily knowledge, then, exhibits no anomaly. Presumably, Biobot sewersheds and Verily sewersheds don’t overlap.

[3] (CDC Variants) “As of Might 11, genomic surveillance knowledge shall be reported biweekly, primarily based on the provision of optimistic check specimens.” “Biweeekly: 1. occurring each two weeks. 2. occurring twice every week; semiweekly.” Appears like CDC has chosen sense #1. In essence, they’re telling us variants are nothing to fret about. Time will inform.

[4] (ER) Doesn’t assist Biobot knowledge. “Charts and knowledge offered by CDC, updates Wednesday by 8am. For the previous 12 months, utilizing a rolling 52-week interval.”

[5] (Hospitalization: NY) Slightly extra lower, according to Biobot knowledge, however not a lot. Let’s wait and see.

[6] (Hospitalization: CDC) Nonetheless down. “Maps, charts, and knowledge offered by CDC, updates weekly for the earlier MMWR week (Sunday-Saturday) on Thursdays (Deaths, Emergency Division Visits, Check Positivity) and weekly the next Mondays (Hospitalizations) by 8 pm ET†”.

[7] (Walgreens) It might be fascinating to survey this inhabitants usually; these are individuals who, regardless of a tsunami of official propaganda and large peer stress, went and received examined anyhow.

[8] (Cleveland) Flattening, according to Biobot knowledge.

[9] (Vacationers: Posivitity) Down, albeit within the rear view mirror.

[10] (Vacationers: Variants) JN.1 totally dominant.

Stats Watch

There are not any official statistics of curiosity as we speak.

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Manufacturing: “‘A horrible, excellent storm’: Frustrations rise as scarcity of Adderall, different ADHD remedy continues” [Chicago Tribune]. “In October 2022, the U.S. Meals and Drug Administration formally introduced a nationwide Adderall scarcity, leaving thousands and thousands scrambling to acquire prescription stimulant remedy. Over a 12 months later, there’s no finish in sight, and a tangled community of causes has made for no clear answer.” Extra: “Entry to prescription stimulant drugs first started to unravel at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Physicians began reporting a big soar in ADHD diagnoses. Analysis compiled by FDA-affiliated students indicated that prescriptions for stimulant drugs amongst folks aged 20 to 29 rose 30% from April 2018 to March 2022. There are a number of theories on why that’s the case, together with the benefit of telehealth, elevated ADHD consciousness and the added stressors of distant work, specialists say.” To not point out family and friends getting sick and choking to loss of life on the bloody mush of their lungs! WTF is unsuitable with these “specialists”? Extra: “In the meantime, a serious drugmaker started to expertise an Adderall manufacturing delay, based on the FDA. When sufferers turned to different prescription stimulant drugs, these too grew to become scarce. Though the manufacturing delay has since been resolved, its long-lasting results are exacerbated by unprecedented demand. Many pharmacies nationwide nonetheless have unpredictable stock. ‘It was only a horrible, excellent storm that basically has trapped our sufferers from getting what they should work, to carry out at college, to have the ability to dwell their lives,’ [Julie Carbray, a clinical professor of psychiatry and nursing at the University of Illinois Chicago] stated. One other hurdle: As a result of stimulant remedy is a managed substance, most individuals with ADHD can receive solely a 30-day provide at a time.” • Onerous for me to establish, as a result of I’m so previous I wasn’t drugged at school for being a boy. That stated, it appears exceptional to me that the magic of {the marketplace} is unable to unravel a provide situation, so WTF? Nevertheless–

Manufacturing: “The Empty Adderall Manufacturing facility” [New York Magazine]. “There’s been a nationwide scarcity of ADHD remedy for greater than a 12 months and a half. In accordance with the federal government and business specialists, there are a number of overlapping causes: manufacturing issues, labor points, supply-chain failures, and an enormous rise in demand in the course of the pandemic. However Ascent claims there’s one other issue exacerbating the scarcity, one which’s fully sui generis: the truth that it’s been shut down by the Drug Enforcement Administration. The company has accused Ascent of shabby recordkeeping that may have allowed thousands and thousands of capsules to go unaccounted for. Ascent makes painkillers along with stimulants, and, amid the continuing opioid epidemic, the DEA has been beneath stress to point out it’s aggressively policing the business. (The company didn’t reply to requests for remark.) Ascent has stated that its paperwork is so as and has sued the Division of Justice to get its meeting traces working once more. A decision doesn’t appear probably anytime quickly. Within the meantime, the corporate is producing zero ADHD meds. If its claims are true, that’s 600 million doses per 12 months lacking from the market. As Ascent says in its lawsuit, ‘Turning off that offer is making a grave state of affairs infinitely worse.’” • A drugmaker named “Ascent.” That’s an excessive amount of!

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As we speak’s Worry & Greed Index: 66 Greed (earlier shut: 75 Excessive Greed) [CNN]. One week in the past: 71 (Excessive Greed). (0 is Excessive Worry; 100 is Excessive Greed). Final up to date Final up to date Feb 20 at 1:31:21 PM ET.

The Gallery

“As Seen on ‘Blade Runner 2049′: A Turner Canvas Reflecting Technological Dystopia” [Artnet]. “Hidden away in a vital scene is nothing aside from a portray by English Romantic painter J.M.W. Turner that echoes the scene’s misty environment and should even have been supposed to bolster the movie’s presentation of the specter of the prevalence of the technological over the pure…. [K, the replicant protagonist,] tracks… Deckard (performed by Ford as within the unique) to the ruins of Las Vegas… Deckard inhabits the deserted Classic On line casino, surrounded by antique-looking objects: work cling on the wall…. In the event you blinked, you would possibly miss it, however Turner’s portray Rain, Steam and Velocity – The Nice Western Railway (1844) hangs on the wall over Ford’s shoulder; the darkish traces of a viaduct main into the space are unmistakable…. Within the portray, a steam engine crosses a railway bridge within the rain. Turner depicted a hare alongside the prepare observe to spotlight the distinction between the pace of the animal, a product of nature, and the prepare, a technological advance. (In accordance with the Nationwide Gallery in London, the place the portray resides, ‘The animal is now invisible because the paint has turn out to be clear with age, however it may be seen in an 1859 engraving of the portray.’).” • Right here it’s:

(The hare is or could be at backside proper; I’m glad for the Nationwide Gallery notice as a result of I used to be going nuts looking for it.) Another reason for Blade Runner 2049‘s superiority over the unique [ducks].

Guillotine Watch

“The gloves are off amongst Silicon Valley CEOs” [Business Insider]. “It’s removed from clear who the winners and losers of those new open rivalries shall be. What’s extra sure, based on Y Combinator cofounder Paul Graham at the least, is that innovation might occur sooner than it has in a while.” • That’s too unhealthy.

Information of the Wired

“Why is nobody making a brand new model of previous Fb?” [12 Challenges]. “Both: billions of people that used to seek out previous Fb helpful have modified their preferences in the previous few years, and not want one thing like that, Or: an enormous unmet demand presently exists for a social community which relies on the social graph, as a substitute of the content material graph, and which is pre-enshittification. Sure, the social graph has moved elsewhere, largely to messaging platforms. However as Toby factors out, these lack most of the options that we used to take with no consideration on Fb — as an example, creating occasions, inviting mates, establishing teams (non-messaging ones, which have been extra like boards), and the serendipity/utility of a high-quality feed which included folks you cared about.” • I haven’t used Fb in over a decade, and it received’t let me create a brand new account as a result of it nonetheless remembers me, by some means (ugh). However certainly the identical applies to Google? A Google that used PageRank? A pre-evil Google?

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Contact data for crops: Readers, be happy to contact me at lambert [UNDERSCORE] strether [DOT] corrente [AT] yahoo [DOT] com, to (a) learn how to ship me a examine in case you are allergic to PayPal and (b) to learn how to ship me pictures of crops. Greens are high quality! Fungi, lichen, and coral are deemed to be honorary crops! If you’d like your deal with to seem as a credit score, please place it in the beginning of your mail in parentheses: (thus). In any other case, I’ll anonymize by utilizing your initials. See the earlier Water Cooler (with plant) right here. From CK:

CK writes: “An Oregon meadow in June all achieved up as pointillism, or so it appears to my eye.” Pretty!

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Readers: Water Cooler is a standalone entity not lined by the annual NC fundraiser. So in the event you see a hyperlink you particularly like, or an merchandise you wouldn’t see anyplace else, please don’t hesitate to precise your appreciation in tangible kind. Bear in mind, a tip jar is for tipping! Common optimistic suggestions each makes me really feel good and lets me know I’m heading in the right direction with protection. After I get no donations for 5 or ten days I get fearful. Extra tangibly, a relentless trickle of donations helps me with bills, and I consider that trickle when setting fundraising targets:

Right here is the display that can seem, which I’ve helpfully annotated:

In the event you hate PayPal, you’ll be able to electronic mail me at lambert [UNDERSCORE] strether [DOT] corrente [AT] yahoo [DOT] com, and I gives you instructions on methods to ship a examine. Thanks!

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