1472: Smugly

Adam Curry & John C. Dvorak

3h 4m
July 28th, 2022
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Executive Producers: Sir Mindfall, Roderick Pauw, Wirt Fuller, Matt Hyde, Daniel Estes, Sir Meachamus Prime, Knight of the Moon Bases of Cybertron

Associate Executive Producers: Dame Astrid + Sir Mark - Duchess + Duke of Japan and all the Disputed Islands in the Japan Sea, Martin, rob moreira, Sir Greasemonkey of the West Texas Oilfields, Brian Telecky

Cover Artist: KorrektDaRekard


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People don't care about what they put into their bodies, like processed foods. Vax is no different
No wonder people trust the vax, they've trusted their processed and packaged food for years
I believe you are as healthy as you are because you cook your own meals
Paul Offit is a major vax Dude
Paul Offit is (or was) the main voice against the "old" anti vaxxers (in the Pre-Covid era)
Paul Offit On The Anti-Vaccine Movement
Paul Offit on the Dangers of the Anti-Vaccine Movement
Deadly Choices
How the Anti-Vaccine Movement Threatens Us All
Monkey Pox
Remember the Monkey Touching lady who is patient zero!
Trump MIC- Saudi sale and huge ndaa
Great Reset
Nederland is koploper gasbesparen, maar de cijfers zijn wel wat vertekend
Nederland bespaart ruim 30 procent op gasverbruik, veel meer dan de 15 procent die de Europese Commissie voorschrijft. Hoe lukt dat? Hoeven burgers en bedrijven zich weinig zorgen te maken om tekorten komende winter?
Het duurt 30 jaar, kost miljarden en start na de zomer: de herinrichting van Nederland - NRC
The Great Renovation
De „grote verbouwing van Nederland”, noemt minister Hugo de Jonge (Volkshuisvesting en Ruimtelijke Ordening, CDA) het. De ingrijpende herinrichting van stad en platteland die na de zomer begint en vele miljarden gaat kosten. Tot 2050 en verder zal een „ruimtelijke puzzel” moeten worden gelegd waarin diverse maatschappelijke vraagstukken aan bod komen. Denk aan: woningnood en asielopvang, klimaatverandering en energietransitie, landbouw en stikstof, milieu en natuur, verkeer en vervoer en de economische ontwikkeling van Nederland.
De contouren van de grote verbouwing tekenen zich nu al af. Bekend is de ambitie van het kabinet om tot 2030 900.000 woningen te bouwen, waarvan twee derde betaalbare huur of koop moet zijn. Er zijn veel woningen gepland in het westen, zoals in de regio Amsterdam (175.000 tot 220.000 woningen) en de zuidelijke Randstad (170.000). Maar er moeten ook meer woningen komen in bijvoorbeeld de regio Arnhem-Nijmegen (70.000), stedelijk Brabant (94.000), de regio Zwolle (40.000) en het gebied Groningen-Assen (21.000 woningen). De Lelylijn, een beoogde treinverbinding tussen Lelystad en Groningen, moet het noorden beter bereikbaar maken.
Ukraine Russia
Big Pharma
Nice to see Tucker picking up on SSRI's [Monday]
Her + Lexapro
Easy to come by with telemedicine
Food Intelligence
Energy & Inflation
Climate Change
Vape Wars - Bingo!
FDA’s top tobacco scientist takes job at Marlboro-maker Philip Morris | Ars Technica
It's unclear when Holman had recused himself, but it appears to have been less than four months ago. On March 18, Holman signed off on the third generation of PMI's heated, smokeless tobacco product, IQOS. Holman also signed off on PMI's initial IQOS application in 2020.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention - Wikipedia
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 17:18
United States government public health agency
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is the national public health agency of the United States. It is a United States federal agency, under the Department of Health and Human Services,[2] and is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia.[3]
The agency's main goal is the protection of public health and safety through the control and prevention of disease, injury, and disability in the US and worldwide.[4] The CDC focuses national attention on developing and applying disease control and prevention. It especially focuses its attention on infectious disease, food borne pathogens, environmental health, occupational safety and health, health promotion, injury prevention and educational activities designed to improve the health of United States citizens. The CDC also conducts research and provides information on non-infectious diseases, such as obesity and diabetes, and is a founding member of the International Association of National Public Health Institutes.[5]
The current Director of the CDC is Rochelle Walensky. The Director reports to the United States Secretary of Health and Human Services.[6]
History [ edit ] Establishment [ edit ] The Communicable Disease Center was founded July 1, 1946, as the successor to the World War II Malaria Control in War Areas program[7] of the Office of National Defense Malaria Control Activities.[8]
Preceding its founding, organizations with global influence in malaria control were the Malaria Commission of the League of Nations and the Rockefeller Foundation.[9] The Rockefeller Foundation greatly supported malaria control,[9] sought to have the governments take over some of its efforts, and collaborated with the agency.[10]
The new agency was a branch of the U.S. Public Health Service and Atlanta was chosen as the location because malaria was endemic in the Southern United States.[11] The agency changed names (see infobox on top) before adopting the name Communicable Disease Center in 1946. Offices were located on the sixth floor of the Volunteer Building on Peachtree Street.[12]
With a budget at the time of about $1 million, 59 percent of its personnel were engaged in mosquito abatement and habitat control with the objective of control and eradication of malaria in the United States[13] (see National Malaria Eradication Program).
Among its 369 employees, the main jobs at CDC were originally entomology and engineering. In CDC's initial years, more than six and a half million homes were sprayed, mostly with DDT. In 1946, there were only seven medical officers on duty and an early organization chart was drawn, somewhat fancifully, in the shape of a mosquito. Under Joseph Walter Mountin, the CDC continued to be an advocate for public health issues and pushed to extend its responsibilities to many other communicable diseases.[14]
In 1947, the CDC made a token payment of $10 to Emory University for 15 acres (61,000 m2) of land on Clifton Road in DeKalb County, still the home of CDC headquarters as of 2019. CDC employees collected the money to make the purchase. The benefactor behind the "gift" was Robert W. Woodruff, chairman of the board of The Coca-Cola Company. Woodruff had a long-time interest in malaria control, which had been a problem in areas where he went hunting. The same year, the PHS transferred its San Francisco based plague laboratory into the CDC as the Epidemiology Division, and a new Veterinary Diseases Division was established.[7]
Growth [ edit ] The Communicable Disease Center moved to its current headquarters in 1960. Building 1 is pictured in 1963.
An Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) was established in 1951, originally due to biological warfare concerns arising from the Korean War; EIS evolved into two-year postgraduate training program in epidemiology, and a prototype for Field Epidemiology Training Programs (FETP), which began in 1980.[15] The FETP is a large operation that has trained more than 18,000 disease detectives in over 80 countries. In 2020 FETP celebrated the 40th anniversary of the CDC's support for Thailand's Field Epidemiology Training Program. Thailand was the first FETP site created outside of North America and is found in numerous countries, reflecting CDC's influence in promoting this model internationally.[16] The Training Programs in Epidemiology and Public Health Interventions Network (TEPHINET) has graduated 950 students.[17]
The mission of the CDC expanded beyond its original focus on malaria to include sexually transmitted diseases when the Venereal Disease Division of the U.S. Public Health Service (PHS) was transferred to the CDC in 1957. Shortly thereafter, Tuberculosis Control was transferred (in 1960) to the CDC from PHS, and then in 1963 the Immunization program was established.[18]
It became the National Communicable Disease Center effective July 1, 1967, and the Center for Disease Control on June 24, 1970. At the end of the Public Health Service reorganizations of 1966''1973, it was promoted to being a principal operating agency of PHS.[8]
Recent history [ edit ] Arlen Specter Headquarters and Emergency Operations Center
It was renamed to the plural Centers for Disease Control effective October 14, 1980,[8] as the modern organization of having multiple constituent centers was established. By 1990, it had four centers formed in the 1980s: the Center for Infectious Diseases, Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, the Center for Environmental Health and Injury Control, and the Center for Prevention Services; as well as two centers that had been absorbed by CDC from outside: the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health in 1973, and the National Center for Health Statistics in 1987.[19]
An act of the United States Congress appended the words "and Prevention" to the name effective October 27, 1992. However, Congress directed that the initialism CDC be retained because of its name recognition.[20] Since the 1990s, the CDC focus has broadened to include chronic diseases, disabilities, injury control, workplace hazards, environmental health threats, and terrorism preparedness. CDC combats emerging diseases and other health risks, including birth defects, West Nile virus, obesity, avian, swine, and pandemic flu, E. coli, and bioterrorism, to name a few. The organization would also prove to be an important factor in preventing the abuse of penicillin. In May 1994 the CDC admitted having sent samples of communicable diseases to the Iraqi government from 1984 through 1989 which were subsequently repurposed for biological warfare, including Botulinum toxin, West Nile virus, Yersinia pestis and Dengue fever virus.[21]
On April 21, 2005, then''CDC Director Julie Gerberding formally announced the reorganization of CDC to "confront the challenges of 21st-century health threats".[22] She established four Coordinating Centers. In 2009 the Obama Administration re-evaluated this change and ordered them cut as an unnecessary management layer.[23]
As of 2013, the CDC's Biosafety Level 4 laboratories are among the few that exist in the world.[24] They constitute one of only two official repositories of smallpox in the world. The second smallpox store resides at the State Research Center of Virology and Biotechnology VECTOR in the Russian Federation. In 2014, the CDC revealed they had discovered several misplaced smallpox samples while their lab workers were 'potentially infected' with anthrax.[25]
The city of Atlanta annexed the property of the CDC headquarters effective January 1, 2018, as a part of the city's largest annexation within a period of 65 years; the Atlanta City Council had voted to do so the prior December.[3] The CDC had requested that the Atlanta city government annex the area. The headquarters were located in an unincorporated area,[26] statistically in the Druid Hills census-designated place.[27]
Organization [ edit ] CDC's Roybal campus in Atlanta, Georgia
Tom Harkin Global Communications Center
The CDC is organized into "Centers, Institutes, and Offices" (CIOs), with each organizational unit implementing the agency's activities in a particular area of expertise while also providing intra-agency support and resource-sharing for cross-cutting issues and specific health threats. Generally, CDC "Offices" are subdivided into Centers, which in turn are composed of Divisions and Branches.[7] However, the Center for Global Health and the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health are freestanding organizational units and do not belong to a parent Office. As of August 2019, the CIOs are:
DirectorPrincipal Deputy DirectorDeputy Director '' Public Health Service and Implementation ScienceOffice of Minority Health and Health EquityCenter for Global HealthCenter for Preparedness and ResponseCenter for State, Tribal, Local, and Territory SupportDeputy Director '' Public Health Science and SurveillanceOffice of ScienceOffice of Laboratory Science and SafetyCenter for Surveillance, Epidemiology, and Laboratory ServicesNational Center for Health StatisticsDeputy Director '' Non-Infectious DiseasesNational Center on Birth Defects and Developmental DisabilitiesNational Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health PromotionNational Center for Environmental Health and Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease RegistryNational Center for Injury Prevention and ControlDeputy Director '' Infectious DiseasesNational Center for Immunization and Respiratory DiseasesNational Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases (includes the Division of Global Migration and Quarantine, which issues quarantine orders)[28]National Center for HIV/AIDS, Viral Hepatitis, STD, and TB PreventionNational Institute for Occupational Safety and HealthOffice of the DirectorChief of StaffChief Operating OfficerHuman Resources OfficeOffice of Financial ResourcesOffice of Safety, Security, and Asset ManagementOffice of the Chief Information OfficerChief Medical OfficerCDC Washington OfficeOffice of Equal Employment OpportunityAssociate Director '' CommunicationAssociate Director '' Laboratory Science and SafetyAssociate Director '' Policy and StrategyThe Office of Public Health Preparedness was created during the 2001 anthrax attacks shortly after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001. Its purpose was to coordinate among the government the response to a range of biological terrorism threats.[29]
Locations [ edit ] Most CDC centers are located in Atlanta. Building 18, which opened in 2005 at the CDC's main Roybal campus (named in honor of the late Representative Edward R. Roybal), contains the premier BSL4 laboratory in the United States.[30][31][32]
A few of the centers are based in or operate other domestic locations:[33]
The National Center for Health Statistics is primarily located in Hyattsville, Maryland, with a branch in Research Triangle Park in North Carolina.The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health's primary locations are Cincinnati; Morgantown, West Virginia; Pittsburgh; Spokane, Washington; and Washington, D.C., with branches in Denver; Anchorage, Alaska; and Atlanta.The CDC Washington Office is based in Washington, D.C.Two divisions of the National Center for Emerging and Zoonotic Infectious Diseases are based outside Atlanta. The Division of Vector-Borne Diseases is based in Fort Collins, Colorado, with a branch in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The Arctic Investigations Program is based in Anchorage.In addition, CDC operates quarantine facilities in 20 cities in the U.S.[34]
Budget [ edit ] CDC's budget for fiscal year 2018 is $11.9 billion.[35] The CDC offers grants that help many organizations each year advance health, safety and awareness at the community level throughout the United States. The CDC awards over 85 percent of its annual budget through these grants.[36]
Workforce [ edit ] As of 2021,[update] CDC staff numbered approximately 15,000 personnel (including 6,000 contractors and 840 United States Public Health Service Commissioned Corps officers) in 170 occupations. Eighty percent held bachelor's degrees or higher; almost half had advanced degrees (a master's degree or a doctorate such as a PhD, D.O., or M.D.).[37]
Common CDC job titles include engineer, entomologist, epidemiologist, biologist, physician, veterinarian, behavioral scientist, nurse, medical technologist, economist, public health advisor, health communicator, toxicologist, chemist, computer scientist, and statistician.[38] The CDC also operates a number of notable training and fellowship programs, including those indicated below.
Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) [ edit ] The Epidemic Intelligence Service (EIS) is composed of "boots-on-the-ground disease detectives" who investigate public health problems domestically and globally.[39] When called upon by a governmental body, EIS officers may embark on short-term epidemiological assistance assignments, or "Epi-Aids", to provide technical expertise in containing and investigating disease outbreaks.[40][41][42] The EIS program is a model for the international Field Epidemiology Training Program.
Public Health Associates Program [ edit ] The CDC also operates the Public Health Associate Program (PHAP), a two-year paid fellowship for recent college graduates to work in public health agencies all over the United States. PHAP was founded in 2007 and currently[when? ] has 159 associates in 34 states.[43]
Leadership [ edit ] David Sencer points to a depiction of
Triatomine sp., which transmits
Chagas diseaseThe Director of CDC is a Senior Executive Service position[44] that may be filled either by a career employee, or as a political appointment that does not require Senate confirmation, with the latter method typically being used. The director serves at the pleasure of the President and may be fired at any time.[19][45][46] The CDC director concurrently serves as the Administrator of the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry.[47]
Twenty directors have served the CDC or its predecessor agencies, including three who have served during the Trump administration (including Anne Schuchat who twice served as acting director)[8][48] and three who have served during the Carter administration (including one acting director not shown here).[49] Two served under Bill Clinton, but only one under the Nixon to Ford terms.
Louis L. Williams Jr., MD (1942''1943)Mark D. Hollis, ScD (1944''1946)Raymond A. Vonderlehr, MD (1947''1951)Justin M. Andrews, ScD (1952''1953)Theodore J. Bauer, MD (1953''1956)Robert J. Anderson, MD, MPH (1956''1960)Clarence A. Smith, MD, MPH (1960''1962)James L. Goddard, MD, MPH (1962''1966)David J. Sencer, MD, MPH (1966''1977)William H. Foege, MD, MPH (1977''1983)James O. Mason, MD, MPH, Ph.D. (1983''1989)William L. Roper, MD, MPH (1990''1993)David Satcher, MD, PhD (1993''1998)Jeffrey P. Koplan, MD, MPH (1998''2002)[50]Julie Gerberding, MD, MPH (2002''2008)Thomas R. Frieden, MD, MPH (2009 '' Jan 2017)[45]Anne Schuchat, MD, RADM USPHS (acting, Jan''July 2017)[51]Brenda Fitzgerald, MD (July 2017 '' Jan 2018)[52]Anne Schuchat, MD (acting, Jan''Mar 2018)Robert R. Redfield, MD (March 2018''Jan 2021)[53]Rochelle Walensky, MD, MPH (Jan 2021''present)Datasets and survey systems [ edit ] CDC Scientific Data, Surveillance, Health Statistics, and Laboratory Information.[54]Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS), the world's largest, ongoing telephone health-survey system.[55]Mortality Medical Data System.[56]Abortion statistics in the United States[57]CDC WONDER (Wide-ranging ONline Data for Epidemiologic Research)[58]Data systems of the National Center for Health Statistics[59]Areas of focus [ edit ] CDC and
MSF staff preparing to enter an
Ebola treatment unit in
Liberia, August 2014
Communicable diseases [ edit ] The CDC's programs address more than 400 diseases, health threats, and conditions that are major causes of death, disease, and disability. The CDC's website has information on various infectious (and noninfectious) diseases, including smallpox, measles, and others.
Influenza [ edit ] The CDC targets the transmission of influenza, including the H1N1 swine flu, and launched websites to educate people about hygiene.[60]
Division of Select Agents and Toxins [ edit ] Within the division are two programs: the Federal Select Agent Program (FSAP) and the Import Permit Program. The FSAP is run jointly with an office within the U.S. Department of Agriculture, regulating agents that can cause disease in humans, animals, and plants. The Import Permit Program regulates the importation of "infectious biological materials."[61]
The CDC runs a program that protects the public from rare and dangerous substances such as anthrax and the Ebola virus. The program, called the Federal Select Agent Program, calls for inspections of labs in the U.S. that work with dangerous pathogens.[62]
During the 2014 Ebola outbreak in West Africa, the CDC helped coordinate the return of two infected American aid workers for treatment at Emory University Hospital, the home of a special unit to handle highly infectious diseases.[63]
As a response to the 2014 Ebola outbreak, Congress passed a Continuing Appropriations Resolution allocating $30,000,000 towards CDC's efforts to fight the virus.[64]
Non-communicable diseases [ edit ] The CDC also works on non-communicable diseases, including chronic diseases caused by obesity, physical inactivity and tobacco-use.[65] The work of the Division for Cancer Prevention and Control, led from 2010 by Lisa C. Richardson, is also within this remit.[66][67]
Antibiotic resistance [ edit ] The CDC implemented their National Action Plan for Combating Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria as a measure against the spread of antibiotic resistance in the United States. This initiative has a budget of $161 million and includes the development of the Antibiotic Resistance Lab Network.[68]
Global health [ edit ] Globally, the CDC works with other organizations to address global health challenges and contain disease threats at their source. They work with many international organizations such as the World Health Organization (WHO) as well as ministries of health and other groups on the front lines of outbreaks. The agency maintains staff in more than 60 countries, including some from the U.S. but more from the countries in which they operate.[69] The agency's global divisions include the Division of Global HIV and TB (DGHT), the Division of Parasitic Diseases and Malaria (DPDM), the Division of Global Health Protection (DGHP), and the Global Immunization Division (GID).[70]
The CDC is integral in working with the WHO to implement the International Health Regulations (IHR), an agreement between 196 countries to prevent, control, and report on the international spread of disease, through initiatives including the Global Disease Detection Program (GDD).[71]
The CDC is also a lead implementer of key U.S. global health initiatives such as the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) and the President's Malaria Initiative.[72]
Travelers' health [ edit ] The CDC collects and publishes health information for travelers in a comprehensive book, CDC Health Information for International Travel, which is commonly known as the "yellow book."[73] The book is available online and in print as a new edition every other year and includes current travel health guidelines, vaccine recommendations, and information on specific travel destinations. The CDC also issues travel health notices on its website, consisting of three levels:
"Watch": Level 1 (practice usual precautions)
"Alert": Level 2 (practice enhanced precautions)
"Warning": Level 3 (avoid nonessential travel)[74]
Vaccine safety [ edit ] The CDC monitors the safety of vaccines in the U.S. via the Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS), a national vaccine safety surveillance program run by CDC and the FDA. "VAERS detects possible safety issues with U.S. vaccines by collecting information about adverse events (possible side effects or health problems) after vaccination."[75] The CDC's Safety Information by Vaccine page provides a list of the latest safety information, side effects, and answers to common questions about CDC recommended vaccines.[76]
Foundation [ edit ] The CDC Foundation operates independently from CDC as a private, nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization incorporated in the State of Georgia. The creation of the Foundation was authorized by section 399F of the Public Health Service Act to support the mission of CDC in partnership with the private sector, including organizations, foundations, businesses, educational groups, and individuals.[77][78]
In 2015, BMJ associate editor Jeanne Lenzer raised concerns that the CDC's recommendations and publications may be influenced by donations received through the Foundation, which includes pharmaceutical companies.[79]
Controversies [ edit ] Tuskegee study of untreated syphilis in Black men [ edit ] For 15 years, the CDC had direct oversight over the Tuskegee syphilis experiment.[80] In the study, which lasted from 1932 to 1972, a group of Black men (nearly 400 of whom had syphilis) were studied to learn more about the disease. The disease was left untreated in the men, who had not given their informed consent to serve as research subjects. The Tuskegee Study was initiated in 1932 by the Public Health Service, with the CDC taking over the Tuskegee Health Benefit Program in 1995.[80]
Gun violence [ edit ] An area of partisan dispute related to CDC funding is studying firearms effectiveness. Although the CDC was one of the first agencies to study gun violence as a public health issue, in 1996 the Dickey Amendment, passed with the support of the National Rifle Association, states "none of the funds available for injury prevention and control at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention may be used to advocate or promote gun control".[81] Advocates for gun control oppose the amendment and have tried to overturn it.[82]
Looking at the history of the passage of the Dickey Amendment, in 1992, Mark L. Rosenberg and five CDC colleagues founded the CDC's National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, with an annual budget of approximately $260,000. They focused on "identifying causes of firearm deaths, and methods to prevent them".[83] Their first report, published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1993 entitled "Guns are a Risk Factor for Homicide in the Home", reported "mere presence of a gun in a home increased the risk of a firearm-related death by 2.7 percent, and suicide fivefold'--a "huge" increase."[83] In response, the NRA launched a "campaign to shut down the Injury Center." Two conservative pro-gun groups, Doctors for Responsible Gun Ownership and Doctors for Integrity and Policy Research joined the pro-gun effort, and, by 1995, politicians also supported the pro-gun initiative. In 1996, Jay Dickey (R) Arkansas introduced the Dickey Amendment statement stating "none of the funds available for injury prevention and control at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention may be used to advocate or promote gun control" as a rider.[81] in the 1996 appropriations bill."[83] In 1997, "Congress re-directed all of the money for gun research to the study of traumatic brain injury."[83] David Satcher, CDC head 1993-98[84] advocated for firearms research.[83] In 2016 over a dozen "public health insiders, including current and former CDC senior leaders" told The Trace interviewers that CDC senior leaders took a cautious stance in their interpretation of the Dickey Amendment and that they could do more but were afraid of political and personal retribution.[83] Rosenberg told The Trace, "Right now, there is nothing stopping them from addressing this life-and-death national problem!"[83]
In 2013, the American Medical Association, the American Psychological Association, and the American Academy of Pediatrics sent a letter to the leaders of the Senate Appropriations Committee asking them "to support at least $10 million within the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in FY 2014 along with sufficient new taxes at the National Institutes of Health to support research into the causes and prevention of violence. Furthermore, we urge Members to oppose any efforts to reduce, eliminate, or condition CDC funding related to violence prevention research."[85] Congress maintained the ban in subsequent budgets.[82]
Ebola [ edit ] In October 2014, the CDC gave a nurse with a fever who was later diagnosed with Ebola permission to board a commercial flight to Cleveland.[86]
COVID-19 [ edit ] The first confirmed case of COVID-19 was discovered in the U.S. on January 20, 2020.[87] But widespread COVID-19 testing in the United States was effectively stalled until February 28, when federal officials revised a faulty CDC test, and days afterward, when the Food and Drug Administration began loosening rules that had restricted other labs from developing tests.[88] In February 2020, as the CDC's early coronavirus test malfunctioned nationwide,[89] CDC Director Robert R. Redfield reassured fellow officials on the White House Coronavirus Task Force that the problem would be quickly solved, according to White House officials. It took about three weeks to sort out the failed test kits, which may have been contaminated during their processing in a CDC lab. Later investigations by the FDA and the Department of Health and Human Services found that the CDC had violated its own protocols in developing its tests.[89][90] In November 2020, NPR reported that an internal review document they obtained revealed that the CDC was aware that the first batch of tests which were issued in early January had a chance of being wrong 33 percent of the time, but they released them anyway.[91]
In May 2020, The Atlantic reported that the CDC was conflating the results of two different types of coronavirus tests '-- tests that diagnose current coronavirus infections, and tests that measure whether someone has ever had the virus. The magazine said this distorted several important metrics, provided the country with an inaccurate picture of the state of the pandemic, and overstated the country's testing ability.[92]
In July 2020, the Trump administration ordered hospitals to bypass the CDC and instead send all COVID-19 patient information to a database at the Department of Health and Human Services. Some health experts opposed the order and warned that the data might become politicized or withheld from the public.[93] On July 15, the CDC alarmed health care groups by temporarily removing COVID-19 dashboards from its website. It restored the data a day later.[94][95][96]
In August 2020, the CDC recommended that people showing no COVID-19 symptoms do not need testing. The new guidelines alarmed many public health experts.[97] The guidelines were crafted by the White House Coronavirus Task Force without the sign-off of Anthony Fauci of the NIH.[98][99] Objections by other experts at the CDC went unheard. Officials said that a CDC document in July arguing for "the importance of reopening schools" was also crafted outside the CDC.[100] On August 16, the chief of staff, Kyle McGowan, and his deputy, Amanda Campbell, resigned from the agency.[101] The testing guidelines were reversed on September 18, 2020, after public controversy.[102]
In September 2020, the CDC drafted an order requiring masks on all public transportation in the United States, but the White House Coronavirus Task Force blocked the order, refusing to discuss it, according to two federal health officials.[103]
In October 2020, it was disclosed that White House advisers had repeatedly altered the writings of CDC scientists about COVID-19, including recommendations on church choirs, social distancing in bars and restaurants, and summaries of public-health reports.[104]
In the lead up to 2020 Thanksgiving, at a press conference on November 20 the CDC advised Americans not to travel for the holiday saying, "It's not a requirement. It's a recommendation for the American public to consider." The White House coronavirus task force had its first public briefing in months on that date but travel was not mentioned.[105]
In May 2021, the CDC updated its guidance on airborne transmission of COVID-19.[106]
Controversy over the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report [ edit ] During the pandemic, the CDC Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR) came under pressure from political appointees at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to modify its reporting so as not to conflict with what Trump was saying about the pandemic.[107] Starting in June 2020, Michael Caputo, the HHS assistant secretary for public affairs, and his chief advisor Paul Alexander tried to delay, suppress, change, and retroactively edit MMR releases about the effectiveness of potential treatments for COVID-19, the transmissibility of the virus, and other issues where the president had taken a public stance.[107] Alexander tried unsuccessfully to get personal approval of all issues of MMWR before they went out.[108] Caputo claimed this oversight was necessary because MMWR reports were being tainted by "political content"; he demanded to know the political leanings of the scientists who reported that hydroxychloroquine had little benefit as a treatment while Trump was saying the opposite.[107] In emails Alexander accused CDC scientists of attempting to "hurt the president" and writing "hit pieces on the administration".[109] In October 2020, emails obtained by Politico showed that Alexander requested multiple alterations in a report. The published alterations included a title being changed from "Children, Adolescents, and Young Adults" to "Persons." One current and two former CDC officials who reviewed the email exchanges said they were troubled by the "intervention to alter scientific reports viewed as untouchable prior to the Trump administration" that "appeared to minimize the risks of the coronavirus to children by making the report's focus on children less clear."[110]
Eroding trust in the CDC as a result of COVID-19 controversies [ edit ] A poll conducted in September 2020 found that nearly 8 in 10 Americans trusted the CDC, a decrease from 87 percent in April 2020. Another poll showed an even larger drop in trust with the results dropping 16 percentage points.[111] By January 2022, according to a NBC News poll, only 44% of Americans trusted the CDC compared to 69% at the beginning of the pandemic.[112] As the trustworthiness eroded, so too did the information it disseminates.[101] The diminishing level of trust in the CDC and the information releases also incited "vaccine hesitancy" with the result that "just 53 percent of Americans said they would be somewhat or extremely likely to get a vaccine."[111]
In September 2020, amid the accusations and the faltering image of the CDC, the agency's leadership was called into question. Former acting director at the CDC, Richard Besser, said of Dr. Redfield that "I find it concerning that the CDC director has not been outspoken when there have been instances of clear political interference in the interpretation of science."[113] In addition, Mark Rosenberg, the first director of CDC's National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, also questioned Redfield's leadership and his lack of defense of the science.[113]
Historically, the CDC has not been a political agency; however, the COVID-19 pandemic, and specifically the Trump Administration's handling of the pandemic, resulted in a "dangerous shift" according to a previous CDC director and others. Four previous directors claim that the agency's voice was "muted for political reasons."[114] Politicization of the agency has continued into the Biden administration as COVID-19 guidance is contradicted by State guidance[115] and the agency is criticized as "CDC's credibility is eroding".[116]
In 2021, the CDC, then under the leadership of the Biden Administration, received criticism for its mixed messaging surrounding COVID-19 vaccines, mask-wearing guidance, and the state of the pandemic.[117][118]
The CDC was criticized for shortening quarantine times after lobbying by airline companies, with the Association of Flight Attendants blasting the decision as forcing staff into a potentially "unsafe work environment".[119][120]
On June 10, 2022, the Biden Administration ordered the CDC to remove the COVID-19 testing requirement for air travelers entering the United States.[121]
Publications [ edit ] CDC publications[122]State of CDC report[123]CDC Programs in Brief[124]Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report[125]Emerging Infectious Diseases (monthly journal)[126]Preventing Chronic DiseaseVital statistics[127]Popular culture [ edit ] Zombie Apocalypse campaign [ edit ] On May 16, 2011, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's blog published an article instructing the public on what to do to prepare for a zombie invasion. While the article did not claim that such a scenario was possible, it did use the popular culture appeal as a means of urging citizens to prepare for all potential hazards, such as earthquakes, tornadoes, and floods.[128]
According to David Daigle, the associate director for Communications, Public Health Preparedness and Response, the idea arose when his team was discussing their upcoming hurricane-information campaign and Daigle mused that "we say pretty much the same things every year, in the same way, and I just wonder how many people are paying attention." A social-media employee mentioned that the subject of zombies had come up a lot on Twitter when she had been tweeting about the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster and radiation. The team realized that a campaign like this would most likely reach a different audience from the one that normally pays attention to hurricane-preparedness warnings and went to work on the zombie campaign, launching it right before hurricane season began. "The whole idea was, if you're prepared for a zombie apocalypse, you're prepared for pretty much anything," said Daigle.[129]
Once the blog article was posted, the CDC announced an open contest for YouTube submissions of the most creative and effective videos covering preparedness for a zombie apocalypse (or apocalypse of any kind), to be judged by the "CDC Zombie Task Force". Submissions were open until October 11, 2011.[130] They also released a zombie-themed graphic novella available on their website.[131] Zombie-themed educational materials for teachers are available on the site.[132]
See also [ edit ] U.S. Consumer Product Safety CommissionGun violence in the United StatesHaddon MatrixHome Safety CouncilList of national public health agenciesNational Highway Traffic Safety AdministrationNational Institute for Occupational Safety and HealthReferences [ edit ] Citations [ edit ] ^ "Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Salary Statistics". federalpay.org . Retrieved July 4, 2019 . The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention had 10,899 employees in 2015 ... ^ "Centers for Disease Control and Prevention". United States Department of Health and Human Services. October 4, 2019. Archived from the original on April 10, 2020 . Retrieved May 15, 2020 . ^ a b Niesse, Mark. "City of Atlanta's expansion to Emory and CDC approved". Atlanta Journal-Constitution . Retrieved December 5, 2017 . ^ "Mission, Role and Pledge". Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . 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PMC 1497608 . PMID 15192908. ^ Sledge, Daniel (2012). "War, Tropical Disease, and the Emergence of National Public Health Capacity in the United States". Studies in American Political Development. 26 (2): 125''162. doi:10.1017/S0898588X12000107. hdl:10106/24372 . S2CID 145297402. ^ CDC (March 22, 2017). "Celebrating 7 Decades Of Firsts". Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . Retrieved June 14, 2020 . ^ Division of Parasitic Diseases (February 8, 2010). "Malaria Control in War Areas (1942''1945)". The History of Malaria, an Ancient Disease (2004). Atlanta, Georgia: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . Retrieved March 21, 2011 . ^ Scheele, L. A (1952). "Dr. Joseph W. Mountin, pioneer in public health, 1891''1952". Public Health Rep. 67 (5): 425. PMC 2030772 . PMID 14930166. ^ "FETP 40th Anniversary | Division of Global Health Protection | Global Health | CDC". www.cdc.gov. 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Website's Controversial Testing Guideline Was Not Written by C.D.C. Scientists". The New York Times. September 18, 2020. ISSN 0362-4331 . Retrieved September 18, 2020 . ^ a b Weiland, Noah, 'Like a Hand Grasping': Trump Appointees Describe the Crushing of the C.D.C., The New York Times, December 16, 2020 ^ "After Criticism, C.D.C. Reverses Covid-19 Guidelines on Testing People Who Were Exposed". The New York Times. September 19, 2020. ISSN 0362-4331 . Retrieved September 19, 2020 . ^ Kaplan, Sheila (October 10, 2020). "Covid-19 Live Updates: White House Blocked C.D.C. From Mandating Masks on Public Transit". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331 . Retrieved October 10, 2020 . ^ McKay, Rebecca Ballhaus, Stephanie Armour and Betsy (October 15, 2020). "A Demoralized CDC Grapples With White House Meddling and Its Own Mistakes". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660 . Retrieved October 15, 2020 . ^ "Coronavirus: CDC urges Americans not to travel for Thanksgiving". BBC News. November 20, 2020 . 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Sources [ edit ] Further reading [ edit ] Editorial (May 16, 2020). "Reviving the US CDC". The Lancet. 395 (10236): 1521. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(20)31140-5. PMC 7255307 . PMID 32416772. External links [ edit ] Wikinews has news related to:
Official website CDC in the Federal RegisterCDC-Wide Activities and Program Support account on USAspending.govCDC Online NewsroomCDC Public Health Image LibraryCDC Global Communications CenterCDC Emerging Infectious Diseases Laboratory '' Atlanta, GeorgiaCDC WONDER online databases.Vaccine Safety Monitoring Systems and Methods (CDC) a slide deck presented at October 2019 Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) meetingLinks to related articles
National Foundation for the Ctrs for Disease Contr & Prevention, Inc. - GuideStar Profile
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National Foundation for the Ctrs for Disease Contr & Prevention, Inc. Board of directors as of04/27/2020SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair
Douglas Nelson
Retired President and CEO, The Annie E. Casey Foundation
Gary Cohen
Executive Vice President, Global Health, BD; President, BD Foundation
David Ratcliffe
Retired Chairman, President and CEO, Southern Company
Matt James
Senior Counselor, GMMB; Special Projects Advisor, Freedman Consulting
John Rice
Vice Chairman, GE; President and CEO, GE Technology Infrastructure
Leah Devlin, DDS, MPH
Professor of the Practice of Health Policy and Management, The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill's Gillings School of Global Public Health
Phil Kent
Former Chairman and CEO, Turner Broadcasting Systems, Inc. (TBS)
Ruth Katz, JD, MPH
Director, Health, Medicine and Society Program,The Aspen Institute
Betty King
Former U.S. Ambassador, United Nations in Geneva
Dikembe Mutombo
Chairman and President, Dikembe Mutombo Foundation
David Aldridge
Retired CFO and Executive Vice President, Superior Essex, Inc.
Raymond Baxter, PhD
Former Senior Vice President, Community Benefit, Research and Health Policy, Kaiser Permanente
Shirley Frankilin
Former Mayor of Atlanta; Executive Chairman, Purpose Built Communities
James Marks, MD, MPH
Former Executive Vice President, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Kristen Silverberg
Former Ambassador to the European Union; Managing Director, Institute of International Finance
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: protecting the private good? | The BMJ
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 17:13
Jeanne Lenzer , associate editor, The BMJ, USA jlenzer{at}bmj.com After revelations that the CDC is receiving some funding from industry, Jeanne Lenzer investigates how it might have affected the organisation's decisions
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) includes the following disclaimer with its recommendations: ''CDC, our planners, and our content experts wish to disclose they have no financial interests or other relationships with the manufacturers of commercial products . . . CDC does not accept commercial support.'' 1
The CDC's image as an independent watchdog over the public health has given it enormous prestige, and its recommendations are occasionally enforced by law.
Despite the agency's disclaimer, the CDC does receive millions of dollars in industry gifts and funding, both directly and indirectly, and several recent CDC actions and recommendations have raised questions about the science it cites, the clinical guidelines it promotes, and the money it is taking.
Marcia Angell, former editor in chief of the New England Journal of Medicine, told The BMJ, ''The CDC has enormous credibility among physicians, in no small part because the agency is generally thought to be free of industry bias. Financial dealings with biopharmaceutical companies threaten that reputation.'' 2
Industry funding of the CDC has taken many doctors, even some who worked for CDC, by surprise. Philip Lederer, an infectious diseases fellow at Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, and a former CDC epidemic intelligence service officer, told The BMJ he was ''saddened'' to learn of industry funding.
The CDC's director, Tom Frieden, did not respond to a question about the disclaimer. He told The BMJ by email, ''Public-private partnerships allow CDC to do more, faster. The agency's core values of accountability, respect, and integrity guide the way CDC spends the funds entrusted to it. When possible conflicts of interests arise, we take a hard, '...
View the CHIPS+ Legislation - U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, & Tran...
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 17:08
NSF, NIST, DOC, NASA Division B Summary
Little evidence that chemical imbalance causes depression, UCL scientists find | Depression | The Guardian
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 17:01
Scientists have called into question the widespread use of antidepressants after a major review found ''no clear evidence'' that low serotonin levels are responsible for depression.
Prescriptions for antidepressants have risen dramatically since the 1990s, with one in six adults and 2% of teenagers in England now being prescribed them. Millions more people around the world regularly use antidepressants.
''Many people take antidepressants because they have been led to believe their depression has a biochemical cause, but this new research suggests this belief is not grounded in evidence,'' said the study's lead author, Joanna Moncrieff, a professor of psychiatry at University College London and consultant psychiatrist at North East London NHS foundation trust.
''It is always difficult to prove a negative, but I think we can safely say that after a vast amount of research conducted over several decades, there is no convincing evidence that depression is caused by serotonin abnormalities, particularly by lower levels or reduced activity of serotonin.
''Thousands of people suffer from side-effects of antidepressants, including the severe withdrawal effects that can occur when people try to stop them, yet prescription rates continue to rise. We believe this situation has been driven partly by the false belief that depression is due to a chemical imbalance. It is high time to inform the public that this belief is not grounded in science.''
The new review of existing studies found that depression is not likely to be caused by a chemical imbalance and said people should be made aware of other options for treating it.
However, other experts, including from the Royal College of Psychiatrists, questioned the findings and urged people not to stop taking their medication in light of the study, arguing that antidepressants remained effective.
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In the new analysis, researchers said 85% to 90% of the public believed depression was caused by low serotonin or a chemical imbalance.
Most antidepressants are selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), originally said to work by correcting abnormally low serotonin levels.
The review, published in the journal Molecular Psychiatry, looked at studies examining serotonin and depression involving tens of thousands of people. One of the findings was that research comparing levels of serotonin and its breakdown products in the blood or brain fluids did not discover any difference between people diagnosed with depression and healthy people.
The authors also looked at studies where serotonin levels were artificially lowered in hundreds of people and concluded that lowering serotonin in this way did not produce depression in hundreds of healthy volunteers.
Other studies looked at the effects of stressful life events and found that the more stressful life events a person had experienced, the more likely they were to be depressed, showing the importance of external events.
According to the research, there is also evidence from other studies that antidepressants may actually induce low serotonin in the long term.
''Our view is that patients should not be told that depression is caused by low serotonin or by a chemical imbalance, and they should not be led to believe that antidepressants work by targeting these unproven abnormalities,'' said Moncrieff.
''We do not understand what antidepressants are doing to the brain exactly, and giving people this sort of misinformation prevents them from making an informed decision about whether to take antidepressants or not.''
A spokesperson for the Royal College of Psychiatrists said: ''Antidepressants are an effective, Nice-recommended treatment for depression that can also be prescribed for a range of physical and mental health conditions. We would not recommend for anyone to stop taking their antidepressants based on this review, and encourage anyone with concerns about their medication to contact their GP.''
Dr Michael Bloomfield, a consultant psychiatrist and principal clinical research fellow at University College London, who was not involved in the study, said: ''Many of us know that taking paracetamol can be helpful for headaches, and I don't think anyone believes that headaches are caused by not enough paracetamol in the brain. The same logic applies to depression and medicines used to treat depression.
''There is consistent evidence that antidepressant medicines can be helpful in the treatment of depression and can be life-saving.''
CDC is a Private Organization '' Not Government! | Armstrong Economics
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:59
Some people have questioned my concern over both the CDC and John Hopkins University is a PRIVATE organization where the CDC accepts private funding '' NOT ONLY GOVERNMENT! The CDC is quasi-government under the Department of Health and Human Services which strangely has sources of funding that are predicated on the fact that it also has a private 501(c)(3) public charity, like the Clinton Foundation. The CDC Foundation receives charitable contributions and philanthropic grants from individuals, foundations, corporations, universities, NGOs and other organizations to advance the work of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This is NOT a government-funded organization. It is not exclusively a government-funded '' very curious.
I have serious questions as to what is being driven by the CDC in conjunction with John Hopkins University who takes $1.8 billion from Bloomberg. The CDC and John Hopkins are either deliberately trying to create an economic depression, or are sublimely ignorant of the consequences of their scorched earth policy. Yes, we can cure contagions by sequestering everyone and shutting down the economy. We all then live on handouts from the government, stay home, don't work, and watch TV? As one reader commented: ''Mirror, Mirror, on the wall; Guess we are all socialists after all!''
Portrait of Bravery: Ukraine's First Lady, Olena Zelenska | Vogue
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:56
But while at the start of the war Zelenskyy was visible on screens across Ukraine and worldwide, imploring the United States and Europe to send weaponry and aid, Zelenska and the children had vanished from view, moving between secure locations. In those difficult days, Zelenska stayed busy, and sane, by keeping up with her official first lady duties, conducting written interviews, trying to reshape some of her initiatives for wartime. ''My daily schedule didn't have a free moment when I could just sit back and start thinking about bad things,'' she said. She helped her son with online school, which was challenging because they weren't able to be online in real time. They played board games and read. She reread George Orwell's 1984. ''It's a horrible coincidence. It's a picture of what is happening in Russia these days.''
Before the war, she'd already become an advocate for the vulnerable, especially children with special needs, and also worked to raise awareness and fight domestic violence. She brought in a renowned Ukrainian chef, Ievgen Klopotenko, to overhaul public school cafeteria nutrition, introducing more fruits and vegetables to a diet largely of meat and potatoes, and helped negotiate the introduction of Ukrainian-language audio guides at major international museums. Zelenska has continued this work, not least because millions of Ukrainians are now living abroad, especially in Europe. The schools initiative has shifted because the question is now whether children can go to school at all'--Russia has been bombing schools and not all have adequate bomb shelters'--or have enough to eat. In her speech to Congress, Zelenska compared Russia's strategy in Ukraine to The Hunger Games.
That speech showed Zelenska's style: a tough message with a soft look. Her family had long projected a youthful, future-oriented image of an independent Ukraine to the rest of the world. No longer was this a country of oligarchs and kleptocrats of the post-Soviet years. ''She keeps it modern, she keeps it real,'' says Julie Pelipas, a London-based Ukrainian designer who helped style the images accompanying this story. ''She's very precise with what she wears, but she gives space to experiment,'' Pelipas says. ''When she's wearing a trouser suit, she's not afraid to be looking too masculine next to the president. This is also a sign of a modern woman in Ukraine'--we're not afraid to show that we're stronger, that we're equal with men.''
Not long before Zelenska's visit to Washington, I asked President Zelenskyy about his wife, and how she was helping the cause. When I reached his office in the presidential compound in Kyiv, past a gauntlet of security, it took me a minute to realize that I'd arrived. There was an ornate parquet floor. I recognized his desk, flanked by a flag of Ukraine, from his video messages. He wore an olive sweater and pants, and sat at the head of a giant long table. Zelenskyy was slight, with a several days' beard, and looked tired. We shook hands. I told him I was there to talk about another front in the war: the home front. ''Home is also the front line,'' he said in his gravely baritone, in English before switching to Ukrainian. He told me he understood why millions of Ukrainians had fled the country, but that those who remained needed to be role models, starting with his family. ''I can do it for one part of our people, for a significant part,'' he said. ''But for women and children, my wife being here sets an example. I believe that she plays a very powerful role for Ukraine, for our families, and for our women.''
The war has now entered a crucial, transitional phase. Large swaths of Ukraine's east and south are under Russian occupation. Zelenskyy wants more military support for defense and to claw back territory Russia has seized since February, if not since 2014, when Russia first invaded Crimea and parts of eastern Ukraine. International attention has been flagging, while inflation and gas prices are on the rise worldwide. When I asked him about this, Zelenskyy was direct. ''I will be very honest and maybe not very diplomatic: Gas is nothing. COVID, even COVID is nothing when you compare it to what's going on in Ukraine,'' he said. ''Just try to imagine what I'm talking about happening to your home, to your country. Would you still be thinking about gas prices or electricity prices?'' The battle, he said, goes beyond Ukraine. ''We are fighting for things that could happen in any country in the world,'' he told me. ''If the world allows this to happen, then it is not upholding its values. That's why Ukraine needs support'--significant support.''
I asked Zelenskyy how the war has affected his own family. ''Like any ordinary man, I have been worried sick about them, about their safety. I didn't want them to be put in danger,'' he said. ''It's not about romance. It's about horrors that were happening here in Kyiv's outskirts and all those horrors that are happening now in our country, in occupied territories,'' he said. ''But of course I've been missing them. I've wanted to hug them so much. I've wanted to be able to touch them.'' He's proud of Zelenska, he said, for coping. ''She has a strong personality to start with. And probably she is stronger than she thought she was. And this war'--well, any war is probably bound to bring out qualities you never expected to have.''
If Zelenskyy was a bit stiff'--telling me Zelenska is a great mother who takes her responsibilities as first lady very seriously'--he warmed up immediately when asked about her human qualities, their shared past, what people should know about her. ''Of course she is my love. But she is my greatest friend,'' he said. ''Olena really is my best friend. She is also a patriot and she deeply loves Ukraine. It's true. And she is an excellent mother.''
The couple first met in high school in their hometown of Kryvyi Rih, an industrial city in southeast Ukraine. When they started dating, it wasn't love at first sight. He was first drawn to her looks: ''You look at someone's eyes, and lips,'' he explained. Then they got to talking. ''That's when you cross the distance from like to love. That's what happened for me,'' he said. (''Probably, humor was this mutual chemistry between us,'' she said when I asked about their origin story.) Did Zelenskyy try out his jokes on her? He smiled. ''Yes, of course. My jokes don't always go over well with her. She is a very good editor.''
Zelenska was born Olena Kiyashko. Her mother was an engineer and manager in a construction company and her father a professor in a technical school. Both she and Zelenskyy are only children. Both were raised in Russian-speaking households and learned Ukrainian later. They were 11 when the Berlin Wall fell, and in junior high school when Ukraine gained its independence, in 1991. Aerosmith and The Beatles were her adolescent soundtrack. ''We were teenagers in the last days of the Soviet Union,'' she said. ''The world started to open up for us.'' That's another reason why Russia's invasion of Ukraine is such a shock. ''When someone starts telling us that there are no Ukrainians and a Ukrainian is just a bad Russian, we don't buy it,'' she said. ''People who were born in independent Ukraine are now in their 30s. It's a new generation. So nobody in Ukraine can understand their pretext or reasons for invading us.''
At university, Zelenska graduated with a degree in architecture and Zelenskyy studied law, but soon both changed course to dedicate themselves to satirical comedy. At first she had her doubts about making a living in comedy. But the comedy troupe anchored by Zelenskyy had already won a hugely popular competition. ''So there was a good foundation,'' she said. The troupe would go on to win multiple times, and in 2003 Zelenskyy and friends, including Zelenska, started Kvartal 95, a production company that became one of the largest in the Russian- and Ukrainian-speaking world. They named it after the district of Kryvyi Rih where they grew up.
COVID outbreaks hit TSA, American and Southwest airlines at LAX - Los Angeles Times
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:56
COVID-19 outbreaks have hit Los Angeles International Airport with at least 400 confirmed cases among Transportation Security Administration staff and workers at American and Southwest airlines, according to county health officials.
At least 233 TSA staffers at LAX have tested positive for the coronavirus since an outbreak was first detected among workers June 9, according to the L.A. County Department of Public Health.
The TSA outbreak would be the largest active outbreak being monitored by the department, which records outbreaks at residential care facilities, workplaces, food and retail stores, homeless service locations, schools, jails, law enforcement settings and courts.
TSA officials, however, said the county's numbers were not reflective of current infections.
''Our infection rate for LAX is being inaccurately reported by about seven times higher than we are currently seeing in our operation,'' a TSA official said.
TSA refused to provide current infection numbers, saying it no longer provides such data ''because they are consistent with community spread patterns.'' The agency confirmed that the numbers used by the L.A. County Department of Public Health were provided by local TSA officials at LAX.
The county's outbreak data reflect cases that have been reported since the beginning of the active outbreak, and include cases where the patient has since recovered, according to the Department of Public Health.
Despite the number of cases being reported, LAX and TSA officials said services have not been affected because of them.
''There has not been any effect to security lines at LAX,'' said Daniel D. Velez, a spokesperson for TSA.
On Sunday, the maximum standard waiting time for a traveler at the airport was 21 minutes, and 99% of travelers were able to go through screenings in less than 15 minutes, Velez said.
The outbreaks among airport workers come as the entire county is facing elevated levels of infections and a possible renewed requirement of indoor masking if the high number of cases persists.
As of Friday, L.A. County was facing an average of about 6,600 new cases a day over the last week.
TSA officials point out rates among staff will often reflect what is happening locally, and workers are continuing to follow masking guidelines set by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Those who feel sick are told to stay home and report confirmed COVID-19 infections.
According to county health officials, workers for American Airlines at LAX are also experiencing an outbreak of their own, with 154 confirmed cases among staff.
A spokesperson for American Airlines said the 154 infections were cases that have been reported since May 6, and reflect about 2% of the 7,000 employees at LAX. Many of them, the spokesperson said, have already recovered and returned to work.
''The safety of our customers and team members is our top priority,'' the airline said in a statement. ''We have been in close contact with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Los Angeles County Public Health officials throughout the pandemic and will continue to coordinate with them on all required health and safety-related measures.''
In LAX's Terminal 1, Southwest Airlines workers have seen 28 confirmed cases among staff.
''LA County continues to show high COVID-19 community level transmission and we are experiencing COVID cases within our LAX Employee work groups,'' the airline said in a statement. ''We continue to follow COVID-19 Guidelines and are not seeing significant impact within our LAX operations.''
Victoria Spilabotte, a spokesperson for LAX, said operations at the airport are still running as normal.
LAX still requires travelers to wear face masks in the airport, but relaxed rules for travel have meant that many airlines no longer require masks for domestic travel.
American Airlines, Delta Air Lines and Southwest Airlines, for example, make masks optional for travelers when traveling within the U.S.
Germany's surprising and sudden embrace of vegan food - Vox
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:55
Oktoberfest '-- the annual two-week festival in Munich, Germany, that attracts some 6 million attendees a year '-- originally began in 1810 as the gaudy celebration of a royal marriage. Today, it's primarily a good reason for visitors to drink about 2 million gallons of beer while eating nearly half a million roast chickens and over 400,000 sausages.
Once Oktoberfest is done, Germans will keep drinking beer; Germany, after all, ranks sixth in the world in per capita alcohol consumption. But the decadent displays of meat at Oktoberfest aren't necessarily indicative of Germans' year-round eating habits. In fact, Germany is one of the few places in the world where meat consumption is decreasing '-- and fast.
In 2011, Germans ate 138 pounds of meat each year. Today, it's 121 pounds '-- a 12.3 percent decline. And much of that decline took place in the last few years, a time period when grocery sales of plant-based food nearly doubled.
The trend runs counter to virtually everywhere else on the planet, where meat consumption is quickly rising '-- from citizens of low-income countries adding more meat to their diet as incomes increase, to rich countries where meat consumption has more or less plateaued at a high level or continues to slowly increase. (Sweden, like Germany, is a notable exception.)
Understanding the causes behind Germany's newfound love for vegetarian fare could be critical in figuring out how to slow climate change and improve overall health. Meat and dairy production account for around 15 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions, and most countries' per capita meat consumption far exceeds the 57 pounds per year recommended by the EAT-Lancet Commission, a panel of climate and nutrition experts.
Animal welfare and environmental activists in Germany say there's no single explanation as to why their people are putting down (some of) their meat and opting for more plant-based food. One poll found that, from 2016 to 2020, the number of vegans in Germany doubled, hitting 2.6 million people or 3.2 percent of the population. A big jump, to be sure, but not enough to explain the sharp decline in the country's meat consumption.
Rather, says Jens Tuider of ProVeg International, a Berlin-based organization that advocates for reducing meat consumption, ''it's the flexitarians that drive this development.''
Experts say the rise in flexitarians '-- those who reduce but don't eliminate their meat consumption '-- could be due to a number of scandals in recent decades that have put the German meat sector under closer scrutiny. Expos(C)s of forced labor in slaughter plants, reports of rotten meat sold across the country, bird and swine flu outbreaks, and animal cruelty investigations may have affected attitudes toward meat.
But those same problems are playing out elsewhere with far less effect on diet, including in the US, where Americans eat 225 pounds of red meat and poultry (fish excluded) per capita per year, almost twice the amount as Germans.
What seems to set Germany apart is its young people, who are deeply worried about climate change and see reforming the food system as one way to pump the brakes on their country's greenhouse gas emissions. ''Especially among the young people, you can see a cultural change, because they are much more aware of ... what they eat, how they consume,'' says Inka Dewitz of Heinrich B¶ll Stiftung, a foundation in Germany that is affiliated with the German Green Party.
The kids are eating their vegetablesIn a 2021 survey of 15- to 29-year-olds that Heinrich B¶ll Stiftung conducted, 12.7 percent of respondents identified as vegetarian or vegan '-- about twice the rate of Germany as a whole, according to the organization. A recent survey by the German government found 14- to 29-year-olds report purchasing plant-based products at slightly higher rates than 30- to 44-year-olds and much more than those over 60.
This enthusiasm could be explained in part by the youth-led Fridays for Future movement, which was born out of teenage activist Greta Thunberg's school strike in Sweden to demand action on climate change. The movement is popular in Germany, where over 16 percent of respondents in Heinrich B¶ll Stiftung's youth poll said they take part in it to some degree.
''[The movement is] very aware about the environmental effects of meat production, and a lot of the Fridays for Future leaders are actually vegans,'' says Mahi Klosterhalfen, president of the Albert Schweitzer Foundation, a Berlin-based animal welfare organization. On the website of Germany's Fridays for Future movement, the organization's policy demands for the agriculture sector include a halving of meat consumption by 2035, a further decline of 60 pounds of meat based on 2021 rates.
Participants of the climate movement Fridays for Future march in Hamburg, Germany. One sign reads ''Vegan '-- Be a Hero.'' Georg Wendt/Picture Alliance via Getty Images By comparison, the US Fridays for Future movement website doesn't say anything about meat. That's in line with many US environmental organizations, most of which say we need to move away from a meat-heavy food system but mention it sparingly, given the fraught politics of meat regulation in the US, and a focus on bigger sources of emissions: transportation and energy production. However, environmental researchers have pointed out that even if we stopped burning fossil fuels tomorrow, we wouldn't be able to meet global climate targets without cutting emissions from agriculture.
''For [young people], it's more like a political statement to eat less meat or to eat no meat at all,'' Dewitz said.
The ''eat less meat'' sentiment already appears to be taken seriously in some corners of Germany's federal government. Cem –zdemir, the country's minister of food and agriculture and a member of the Greens, recently listed shifting diets to be more plant-based as the first of four priorities in the agency's forthcoming nutrition strategy plan. Two other German ministers have also called for a reduction in meat consumption.
Cem –zdemir addresses a Green Party congress in the northern German city of Kiel on November 26, 2011. –zdemir now serves as Germany's minister of food and agriculture. Carsten Rehder/DPA/AFP via Getty Images That position stands in stark contrast to Tom Vilsack, who served as a lobbyist for the dairy industry after his stint as USDA secretary under President Barack Obama. President Joe Biden reappointed Vilsack to the job in 2021, and since then Vilsack has put forth some modest meat industry reforms but hasn't signaled support for shifting diets away from meat.
German ministers, though, should have no issue finding support among the next generation of voters '-- a majority of them say the government should encourage people to eat a more climate-friendly diet.
Germany's plant-based revolutionThe shift isn't just due to changing political attitudes. The quality and availability of plant-based fare have greatly improved due to innovation from restaurants, food tech startups, and big food companies.
R¼genwalder M¼hle, a German meat company founded in 1834, began producing plant-based meat products at the end of 2014 and reported that, in 2021, its plant-based meat sales surpassed its animal meat sales. The former CEO, Christian Rauffus, predicted that his generation will be the last to eat meat every day because the next one doesn't want to.
Vegan meat products from R¼genwalder M¼hle. a German meat company founded in 1834 that began producing plant-based meat products at the end of 2014. In 2021, its plant-based meat sales surpassed its animal meat sales. Julian Stratenschulte/Picture Alliance via Getty Images The entire sector has seen explosive growth in recent years: Grocery sales of plant-based products in Germany nearly doubled from 2018 to 2020, from $424 million to $835 million.
Hamburg resident Andreas Setzer, a consultant for animal welfare organizations, told me he was surprised to see so few vegan options while traveling around the US over the past year, having been spoiled in Germany for so many years.
''When I came to the US, I was expecting vegan options everywhere but I had to live off of [Burger King's] Impossible Whopper,'' he said about his experience trying to find meat-free food outside major US cities. He added that, in Germany, plant-based food is quite affordable and available just about everywhere.
But looking under the hood of Germany's meat consumption patterns also illustrates a confounding reality of the country's relationship to meat. While per capita consumption has fallen, the number of animals farmed per person has gone up. That's because Germans are eating more chicken.
The dietary migration from red to white meatGermans are eating about the same amount of beef as they were in 2011, but far less pork. But because pigs are large '-- pigs yield about 124 pounds of edible meat on average in Germany '-- the steep decline in pork only resulted in a reduction of about one-sixth of a pig per person. However, the 12.5 percent increase in poultry consumption, which looks modest on the chart below, has resulted in almost one extra chicken farmed for each of Germany's 83 million residents because chickens are so small.
That trend of poultry consumption growing faster than pork and beef consumption has been playing out across the globe over the last few decades as the simplified public health message that red meat is bad and white meat is good caught on. In the 1960s, there were 2.2 chickens raised for each person on Earth. Now, it's 9.2 '-- a 318 percent per capita increase. (However, people in high-income countries eat far more chicken than those in low-income countries '-- for example, each American eats about 23 chickens a year on average.)
In recent decades, some environmentalists have been advocating for swapping red meat with white meat, because red meat '-- especially beef '-- emits far more greenhouse gasses than white meat. (Though plant-based protein usually pollutes less than them all.)
While the dietary migration from red to white meat may have slowed climate change, it severely worsened animal suffering. Not only are we farming far more chickens than in the past '-- 70 billion globally each year compared to 6.5 billion in 1961 '-- but they're typically treated much worse than cattle and pigs and also contribute to air and water pollution in the same way the pork and beef sectors do.
''From the animal ethics perspective it is, of course, rather disastrous,'' says Tuider of ProVeg International. ''So I can't really, at this stage, completely join into the party mode. ... I'm quite sobered by the fact that we've seen this [decline in meat consumption] and increased the number of animals killed, actually.''
Germany's decade-long decline in meat consumption shows that it is indeed possible to shift high-meat diets, a task that has long seemed impossible in the face of humanity's 10,000-year love affair with domesticating animals for meat. But it also shows that the shift, when highly focused on greenhouse gas emissions, can also have the unintended consequence of increasing animal suffering.
In time, companies like R¼genwalder M¼hle might figure out how to make plant-based chicken good enough to stop the dietary migration from red to white meat, and activists like Klosterhalfen might be able to persuade people to hold just as much empathy for chickens as they do for pigs and cows. In the meantime, at least Oktoberfest has several plant-based options for Germany's vegans and flexitarians alike.
Nancy Pelosi to visit Japan this week, meet with PM Fumio Kishida - EconoTimes
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:53
US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi will be traveling to Japan this week amidst the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. During her visit, Pelosi will also be meeting with Prime Minister Fumio Kishida.
Pelosi will be visiting Japan this week and will meet with Kishida, according to sources in Washington and Tokyo. Pelosi and Kishida will seek to reaffirm relations in the midst of the ongoing war in Ukraine as Russia continues its offensive.
The top House Democrat is expected to arrive in Japan as early as Friday and meet Kishida on Sunday at the prime minister's official residence. Pelosi is also set to meet her Japanese counterpart in the country's House of Representatives, Speaker Hiroyuki Hosoda, during her visit.
Japan's Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirokazu Matsuno told reporters at a news conference that a visit was being arranged. However, no decision has been made so far regarding who Pelosi will meet and what would be on the agenda.
Despite no formal decision so far, Pelosi and Kishida are expected to discuss the ongoing crisis in Ukraine. They are also expected to reaffirm cooperation between the two countries in maintaining a free and open Indo-Pacific region in the midst of potential threats from China.
Aside from Japan, Pelosi is also set to visit Taiwan, a move that will surely draw the ire of China. The top House Democrat's upcoming visit on Sunday is another mark of American support towards the island nation, which China claims as its territory, and has opposed any meetings between foreign officials and the Taiwanese government.
Pelosi's visit would be the first time a serving US House Speaker visited Taiwan since Newt Gingrich visited the island nation back in 1997. Both Pelosi's office and the Taiwanese foreign ministry declined to comment on the upcoming visit.
Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen would welcome the visit by Pelosi as Russia's invasion of Ukraine has raised fears that China may try to invade Taiwan through military force, a move that Beijing has not ruled out. Pelosi's visit would be the most high-profile visit by a US government official under President Joe Biden's administration.
'Like a public shaming': a night with the eco-activists deflating SUV tires | Automotive emissions | The Guardian
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:48
O n a searingly hot night in New York City, a group of mask-wearing activists grasping bags of lentils set out to stage the biggest blitzkrieg yet upon a new target for climate campaigners in the US '' the tires of SUVs.
The group '' a mixture of ages and genders '' split up as midnight approached, heading down the streets of the Upper East Side, lined by some of the most expensive apartments in the world and a gleaming parade of high-end, parked SUVs. This type of vehicle is the second largest cause of the global rise in carbon dioxide emissions over the past decade.
The Tyre Extinguishers, as they call themselves, furtively hand around bags of lentils ahead of their raid (the legumes are jammed into a tire valve to release its air slowly overnight) and size up their quarry.
A hulking Land Rover, sporting a parking permit for a Hamptons beach, is an obvious initial target, but a loitering doorman from a nearby apartment complex unnerves the group. They scurry down the street, then double back and settle upon an Audi.
One of the group kneels down, unscrews the tire valve cap, stuffs a lentil inside and puts the cap back on. The tire immediately lets out a startled ''pfft'' noise, a leaflet is slapped on to the windshield and the group melts back into the night.
The Tyre Extinguishers movement started in the UK, spread to a clutch of other countries and has now landed in the US. Since June, dozens of SUV and pickup truck owners in New York, the San Francisco Bay Area and Chicago have discovered their vehicles with flat tires along with a note on the windshield declaring: ''Your gas guzzler kills.''
Members of the Tyre Extinguishers walk on a street on Manhattan's Upper East Side last week.The leaflet, complete with a Ghostbusters-style picture of a crossed-out SUV, states the vast amounts of planet-heating emissions generated by the vehicles are ''nails in the coffin of our climate'', adding: ''You'll be angry, but don't take it personally. It's not you, it's your car.''
America has embraced large SUVs like no other country, even in liberal, walkable areas like the Upper East Side, so the activists face a steep task in attaching stigma to the supersized cars that now dominate US streets. But Tyre Extinguishers' nascent US operation has been flooded with insults and even death threats. One message vowed to ''deflate your lungs'' while another critic, in a nod to the British roots of the campaign, wrote: ''Damn you, Redcoats!''
The death threats aren't a big concern, an activist named Alex insisted. ''People have emailed 'if you fuck up my SUV I will kill you', which I get a kick out of, to be honest,'' she said. ''You're not going to find me. It's like, why are you so mad?''
Left: Shadow of a member of the Tyre Extinguishers. Right: A Tyre Extinguisher deflates a BMW tire.Via a flurry of emails and text messages, Alex was thrown together with a handful of other Tyre Extinguisher volunteers '' the group has a central contact point on its website but is purposely decentralized and cloaked in anonymity '' for the latest salvo on SUVs, which the Guardian observed.
''The amount of damage from a flat tire is nothing compared to climate change,'' said one member of the group as we moved away from the first deflation, Central Park looming into sight through the dark. ''Why do you need an SUV, especially in New York? It's a vanity thing. You have freedom of choice, sure, but you don't have freedom from consequences.''
An army of SUV owners across the US would probably disagree. Sedan cars long reigned as the best-selling category across America but SUVs overtook them in 2015 and haven't looked back. When you include pickup trucks (such as the chunky Ford F-150, which has been America's best-selling vehicle since Ronald Reagan was president), large, truck-like vehicles now make up nearly three-quarters of all car sales in the US.
Modern SUVs offer comfort with a veneer of adventure and ruggedness, even for urban dwellers '' a few Toyota Sequoias, named after the towering trees found in a mountain range 3,000 miles from New York that are on fire because of the climate emergency, dotted the Upper East Side streets. Americans have simply found the need or desire to drive huge cars. ''We need a larger vehicle because I have two sons that are special needs,'' explained Quanda Ellis-Walker, who had her tire deflated in California. ''It was terrifying to know that someone would come and do this to you.''
A member of the Tyre Extinguishers holds a handful of lentils.However, because SUVs combine the weight of an adult rhinoceros and the aerodynamics of a refrigerator, they require more energy to move around than smaller cars and therefore emit more pollution. As their popularity has soared, so has their impact upon the climate crisis.
Over the past decade, the emissions from SUVs eclipsed all shipping, aviation, heavy industry and even trucks, usually the only vehicles to outsize them on the road. The world's SUVs belch out 700 megatonnes of CO2 a year, about the entire output of the UK and Netherlands combined.
While many US cities lack decent public transport options, ''it does not follow logically that we should flood our streets with dangerous, oversized, glacier-melting SUVs when smaller and more efficient vehicles that could easily satisfy most motorists' needs exist,'' according to Doug Gordon, co-host of the popular The War on Cars podcast and an avid New York cyclist. ''If the Tyre Extinguishers spark a conversation about the absurdity of driving a 6,000lb Cadillac Escalade to pick up a 60lb kid from soccer practice, then good for them.''
Members of the Tyre Extinguishers on a mission on the Upper East Side.As the acts of minor sabotage mounted last Wednesday, the activists had to invoke some self-imposed rules. No SUVs with disabled stickers were targeted, nor anything that appeared to be used for certain work. A vehicle was chosen for a deflation only for the group to notice it had a ''surgeon'' sign in the window '' the lentil was swiftly removed before the tire fully deflated. Conversely, an SUV that was deemed ''so huge, so gross'' had two of its tires collapsed.
By the early hours of the morning, 55 SUVs had been ''disarmed'', as the group calls it. No one intervened, not even a group of boisterous drunk young people who staggered past a deflation in progress. The group was wary, however, of security cameras, as the NYPD has circulated grainy footage of a previous deflation operation in an attempt to identify the culprits.
Tampering with random people's property for being harmful to the environment is a departure from standard climate protests, which usually involve mass marches with signs, school ''strikes'' or direct action taken against large entities, such as Exxon or a bank. Tire deflations feel more like a pointed, personal judgment against a fellow citizen.
Left: A member of the Tyre Extinguishers prepares documents to put on a car after deflating its tires. Right: A deflation device is placed on to a tire.''It is like a public shaming,'' said Dana Fisher, a sociologist at the University of Maryland who has researched environmental protests since the 1990s. ''The target of public shaming is very unlikely to change their opinion from the shaming, so the question is, what's the point? It's an innovative, simple tactic to take the air out of someone's tires, it's not harmful, it's just annoying. It's like the training wheels to something confrontational.''
Fisher said she had noticed climate campaigners were becoming more confrontational, as frustration mounts over the dawdling pace of action to tackle the climate crisis. In the US, a summer that has seen record heatwaves, the supreme court boxing in the federal government's response to the crisis and Congress yet again failing to deliver climate legislation will probably only fuel the impotent rage.
''There are a lot of people who care about the environment who are very disappointed and are looking for a protest tactic,'' said Fisher. ''You have people flying in private jets and driving SUVs, so there are lots of opportunities for bad feelings between people with different views on that. It wouldn't surprise me if these actions are the start of something more confrontational and more destructive. I can see it exploding at some point.''
A Tyre Extinguisher puts a document on a car.It was a sweltering night, part of New York's longest heatwave in a decade. By the time the group wrapped up, the temperature was still near 30C (86F), another hot day on a heating planet, much of it seemingly on fire.
Earlier on the same day, Joe Biden had donned his aviators and delivered a speech calling the climate crisis a ''clear and present danger'' and announcing measures that didn't come close to addressing it.
Faced with existential disaster, we are still largely responding with warnings and symbolic gestures, whether that's from the most powerful man in the world or a gaggle of Gen Z activists poking at wealthy liberal hypocrisy in Manhattan.
''These SUV owners might be annoyed but I'm not going to wait around for the rich to realize they are doing something wrong,'' said one of the activists before she headed to the subway. ''I'm not just going to wait around and be nice. We aren't going to let them hide any more.''
Manchin announces support for pared-down Democratic Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, explains reasoning in lengthy statement | WV News | wvnews.com
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:48
WASHINGTON (WV News) '-- U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., on Wednesday announced he has reached an agreement with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., to vote on the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022.
The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 will address record inflation by paying down our national debt, lowering energy costs and lowering healthcare costs.
''Over the last year, leaders in Washington have ignored repeated warnings about the severe threat of inflation and the consequences of unprecedented domestic spending," Manchin wrote in an approximately 1,300-word email explaining his vote.
"Despite these concerns and my calls to give the country time to fully realize the impacts of such historic levels of spending and our inflation crisis, many Democrats have continued to push for trillions more in spending to meet a political deadline. As difficult as it is for some to hear, political calls to action that ignore the severity of the crises we face and will continue to face are a recipe for national disaster," Manchin wrote.
''We must be honest about the economic reality America now faces if we want to avoid fanning the flames of inflation. At its core, the purpose of reconciliation is to get our economic and financial house in order," Manchin wrote. "Contrary to foolish talk otherwise, America cannot spend its way out of debt or out of inflation. With respect to my position, I have never and will never walk away from solving the problems facing the nation we all love. I strongly support the passage of commonsense policies that reduce inflation and focus on the major challenges confronting America today and in the future.
''I have worked diligently to get input from all sides on the legislation my Democratic colleagues have proposed and listened to the views of my Republican friends to find a path forward that removes inflationary policies so that Congress can respond to Americans' suffering from high prices," Manchin wrote.
"Based on that work, I now propose and will vote for the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022. Rather than risking more inflation with trillions in new spending, this bill will cut the inflation taxes Americans are paying, lower the cost of health insurance and prescription drugs, and ensure our country invests in the energy security and climate change solutions we need to remain a global superpower through innovation rather than elimination," Manchin wrote.
"Whether it is the threats to our energy security, high inflation, exploding national debt, persistent income inequality, supply chain chaos or the emergence of a new Cold War, it is time to put away the partisan swords and advance legislation that is in the best interests of the future of this nation and the American people we all represent '' not just one party," Manchin wrote.
''It is past time for America to begin paying down our $30 trillion national debt and get serious about the record inflation that is crushing the wages of American workers. In practical terms, the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 would dedicate hundreds of billions of dollars to deficit reduction by adopting a tax policy that protects small businesses and working-class Americans while ensuring that large corporations and the ultra-wealthy pay their fair share in taxes.
''Tax fairness is vital to our nation's economic future. It is wrong that some of America's largest companies pay nothing in taxes while freely enjoying the benefits of our nation's military security, infrastructure and rule of law. It is commonsense that a domestic corporate minimum tax of 15 percent be applied only to billion-dollar companies or larger ensuring that America's largest businesses are no longer able to operate for free in our economy. Furthermore, to avoid inevitable partisan gamesmanship and increase confidence in the fairness of the tax system, tax reform should never put U.S. businesses at a disadvantage against international competitors. Our tax code should not favor red state or blue state elites with loopholes like SALT and should focus more on closing unfair loopholes like carried interest. Through the enforcement of a fair tax code, we can use the revenue to cut the deficit and lower the cost of healthcare for working families and small businesses.
''In addition to fighting inflation, we must stop pretending that there is only one way to combat global climate change or achieve American energy independence. The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 addresses our nation's energy and climate crisis by adopting commonsense solutions through strategic and historic investments that allow us to decarbonize while ensuring American energy is affordable, reliable, clean and secure. The need to balance all of these critical energy priorities is no longer open to debate given the energy threats we face.
''I support a plan that will advance a realistic energy and climate policy that lowers prices today and strategically invests in the long game. As the super power of the world, it is vital we not undermine our super power status by removing dependable and affordable fossil fuel energy before new technologies are ready to reliably carry the load. This legislation ensures that the market will take the lead, rather than aspirational political agendas or unrealistic goals, in the energy transition that has been ongoing in our country. The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 invests in the technologies needed for all fuel types '-- from hydrogen, nuclear, renewables, fossil fuels and energy storage '-- to be produced and used in the cleanest way possible. It is truly all of the above, which means this bill does not arbitrarily shut off our abundant fossil fuels. It invests heavily in technologies to help us reduce our domestic methane and carbon emissions and also helps decarbonize around the world as we displace dirtier products.
''Our persistent and increasing dependence on foreign energy and supply chains from countries who hate America represents a clear and present danger and it must end. The increased risk of geopolitical uncertainty demands that we turn our focus to increasing U.S. energy production and bringing good paying energy and manufacturing jobs back to America. While this may seem like commonsense, this Administration's current solution is to push forward more costly regulations resulting in less U.S. production while inexplicably asking other nations to pump more oil and relying on Chinese President Xi for the critical minerals our economy needs.
''Let me make it clear, I will not vote to support policies that make the United States more dependent on foreign energy and supply chains or risk moving the country closer to the unstable and vulnerable European model of energy we are witnessing today. Most importantly, I am heartened by the bipartisan recognition that for America to achieve our energy and climate goals, it is critical we reform the broken permitting process. President Biden, Leader Schumer and Speaker Pelosi have committed to advancing a suite of commonsense permitting reforms this fall that will ensure all energy infrastructure, from transmission to pipelines and export facilities, can be efficiently and responsibly built to deliver energy safely around the country and to our allies.
''For too long, the reconciliation debate in Washington has been defined by how it can help advance Democrats political agenda called Build Back Better. Build Back Better is dead, and instead we have the opportunity to make our country stronger by bringing Americans together. I will do everything I can to usher in a new era of compromise and commonsense that will make America more energy secure, financially sound and a more united country for this generation and the next.
''From here forward, the debate over a future reconciliation bill or any targeted legislation must focus on supporting the everyday hardworking Americans we have been elected to serve. I support the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 because it provides a responsible path forward that is laser focused on solving our nation's major economic, energy and climate problems. The question for my colleagues is whether they are willing to put their election politics aside and embrace the commonsense approach that the overwhelming majority of the American people support and will best serve the future of this nation.''
Joe Manchin Revives Biden's Agenda, Agrees To Democrat Package Of Tax Increases And Climate Spending | The Daily Wire
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:46
Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) resurrected key pieces of President Joe Biden's ''Build Back Better'' agenda in a surprising agreement with Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) on Wednesday.
The Democratic senators agreed to a spending package titled the ''Inflation Reduction Act of 2022.'' The bill proposes to increase taxes on billion-dollar companies, spend $369 billion on climate and energy programs, and extend health care subsidies for Affordable Care Act users for three more years, according to The Wall Street Journal.
In recent weeks, Manchin shot down Democrat attempts at pushing through Biden's agenda, and reportedly told Democratic leaders he would ''unequivocally'' refuse to support legislation related to climate change and tax increases.
Now, the West Virginia senator claims reconciling with Democrats on this package will help the country fight inflation.
''We must be honest about the economic reality America now faces if we want to avoid fanning the flames of inflation,'' Manchin said in a statement Wednesday. ''At its core, the purpose of reconciliation is to get our economic and financial house in order. Contrary to foolish talk otherwise, America cannot spend its way out of debt or out of inflation.''
The revival of Biden's agenda comes as the president has faced mounting criticism from his own party for failing to implement significant policy over his first year and a half in office. Democrats will use the budget reconciliation process to bypass the Senate filibuster and advance the bill along party lines, potentially giving the party a much-needed legislative victory before a midterm election where Democrats are expected to face a ''red wave.''
To pass the package, Democrats still might need to convince Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ), who has voiced opposition to elements of Biden's spending agenda. Axios reported that hours after Manchin's surprise reversal, a spokesperson for Sinema said the Arizona senator did not have a comment on the bill because ''she will need to review the text.''
In Manchin's statement, he criticized Democrats for previously attempting to spend trillions of dollars on Biden's ''Build Back Better'' agenda as the country grapples with inflation. While the new package is a large cut from Democrats' initial proposals of over $3 trillion, the Manchin-Schumer deal includes elements that the senator had previously opposed. Manchin did not provide specific details on what changed his mind.
Manchin's agreement to the package he touts as an inflation-fighting bill comes a day before GDP numbers will be released for the quarter. Experts predict the report will show a second consecutive negative GDP report, meaning the country will be in a recession.
A joint statement from Manchin and Schumer claimed the package would ''fight inflation, invest in domestic energy production and manufacturing, and reduce carbon emissions by roughly 40 percent by 2030,'' Politico reported.
Het duurt 30 jaar, kost miljarden en start na de zomer: de herinrichting van Nederland - NRC
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:44
De 'žgrote verbouwing van Nederland'', noemt minister Hugo de Jonge (Volkshuisvesting en Ruimtelijke Ordening, CDA) het. De ingrijpende herinrichting van stad en platteland die na de zomer begint en vele miljarden gaat kosten. Tot 2050 en verder zal een 'žruimtelijke puzzel'' moeten worden gelegd waarin diverse maatschappelijke vraagstukken aan bod komen. Denk aan: woningnood en asielopvang, klimaatverandering en energietransitie, landbouw en stikstof, milieu en natuur, verkeer en vervoer en de economische ontwikkeling van Nederland.
Lees ook: Hoe het Rijk de regie over de inrichting van Nederland losliet Twaalf jaar geleden liet het kabinet-Rutte I de landelijke regie in verstedelijking en landschapsbeleid los, en droeg die over aan de provincies en gemeenten. Nu gaat het kabinet-Rutte IV juist weer sturen omdat de problemen acuut zijn. De grote verbouwing wordt een gevecht om ruimte, want Nederland is te klein voor alle wensen, plannen en ambities. 'žNiet alles kan en niet alles kan overal'', zegt De Jonge.
Hoe komt Nederland eruit te zien na 2050 '' als de plannen slagen? In oktober moeten de twaalf provincies plannen gaan maken voor zowel landelijke als regionale doelen. Een jaar later maken het Rijk en provincies nieuwe afspraken over gebiedsontwikkeling. In 2024 moet de aangescherpte Nationale Omgevingsvisie (NOVI), de langetermijnvisie van het Rijk op de ruimtelijke ordening. van kracht worden.
De contouren van de grote verbouwing tekenen zich nu al af. Bekend is de ambitie van het kabinet om tot 2030 900.000 woningen te bouwen, waarvan twee derde betaalbare huur of koop moet zijn. Er zijn veel woningen gepland in het westen, zoals in de regio Amsterdam (175.000 tot 220.000 woningen) en de zuidelijke Randstad (170.000). Maar er moeten ook meer woningen komen in bijvoorbeeld de regio Arnhem-Nijmegen (70.000), stedelijk Brabant (94.000), de regio Zwolle (40.000) en het gebied Groningen-Assen (21.000 woningen). De Lelylijn, een beoogde treinverbinding tussen Lelystad en Groningen, moet het noorden beter bereikbaar maken.
Lokale wateroverlast'žWe kunnen niet met zijn allen op een kluitje in de Randstad blijven wonen'', zegt minister De Jonge. 'žOmdat het te duur en te druk is, en we daar dan te veel ruimte opsouperen voor bijvoorbeeld de natuur, landbouw en economie.''
Ook klimaatverandering is een reden om meer buiten het laaggelegen westen te bouwen. 'žHet kan verstandig zijn'' om 'žde ontwikkeling in zuidelijke, oostelijke en noordelijke delen van Nederland te vergroten ('...) in gebieden die minder vatbaar zijn voor overstromingen'', staat droogjes in een Kamerbrief uit mei.
Verstrekkend is ook (C)(C)n zinnetje uit het coalitieakkoord: 'žWater en bodem worden sturend bij ruimtelijke planvorming.'' Wat waar gebouwd mag worden, zal afhangen van bijvoorbeeld de lokale wateroverlast, bodemdaling, hittestress, verontreiniging en natuurschade.
'žHet gaat niet alleen om woningbouw, maar ook om vragen als: waar bouw je eventuele nieuwe kerncentrales?'', zegt Meindert Smallenbroek, directeur van de Unie van Waterschappen. 'žHet gaat om keuzes voor h"nderden jaren.''
Nederland moet zich blijven weren tegen het water en 'žklimaatbestendig'' worden. Zee- en rivierdijken zullen waar nodig worden verhoogd en verstevigd. Risicogebieden moeten water kunnen afvoeren bij extreme regenval of overstromingen, zoals in Limburg vorig jaar. Ook moeten er waterbuffers komen om de zoetwatervoorraad aan te vullen; de hoge zandgronden verdrogen, de kust en polders verzilten.
De bodemdaling in veenweidegebieden, ooit ontwaterd voor landbouw, leidt tot verzakte gebouwen en infrastructuur. Waterschappen moeten steeds harder pompen en uit ingedroogd veen komen broeikasgassen vrij. Rijk en provincies moeten kiezen waar landbouw en wonen nog verantwoord zijn, zoals in Zuidwest-Friesland. Smallenbroek: 'žDat gaat boeren, en de sectoren en samenleving eromheen, raken. Dat zijn bijna culturele ingrepen. Ik heb het idee dat dat weleens onderschat wordt.''
De stikstofaanpak zal leiden tot krimp, verduurzaming en herverdeling van de landbouw, die nu nog de helft van Nederland beslaat. De gebieden die qua water, bodem, natuur en stikstof volgens het Rijk het meest geschikt zijn voor landbouw zijn vooral Zeeland, het noorden van Noord-Holland, Friesland en Groningen, Flevoland '' en Gelderland en Brabant veel minder.
IndustrieclustersOp zee en op land is verder ruimte nodig voor het winnen, opslaan en transport van duurzame energie, van windmolens en zonnepanelen. Het kabinet denkt aan grote 'žindustrieclusters'' op specifieke, veilige locaties, liefst in de buurt van spoorlijnen, waterwegen, hoogspanningskabels of buisnetwerken.
Grote economische, logistieke knooppunten moeten verduurzamen voor een klimaatneutraal Nederland in 2050. Zoals de havens van Rotterdam en de regio Terneuzen-Vlissingen, net als het Noordzeekanaalgebied in de metropool Amsterdam. Ook Schiphol moet transformeren, en tegelijkertijd ruimte houden in een dichtbevolkt woongebied.
Steden op hun beurt moeten van aardgas op duurzame energie overgaan (C)n vergroenen om hitte tegen te gaan. Het wordt dringen in de ondergrond om zowel bomen als kabel- en warmtenetten te combineren. De centra van steden zullen meer autoluw worden en het snelle elektrische (fiets)verkeer vraagt om extra ruimte op de openbare weg.
Lees ook: Het vergroenen van deze Rotterdamse wijk is een gevecht om de ondergrond Als je als land een hoogwaardige kenniseconomie wilt, moet je ook kiezen voor een hoogwaardige leef - en werkomgeving, zegt hoogleraar landschapsarchitectuur Adriaan Geuze van de TU Delft. 'žKwalitatief en mooi cultuurlandschap, een gezond milieu en efficinte mobiliteit zijn de basis voor aantrekkelijke steden en innovatieve werkplekken. Kijk naar Zwitserland of Denemarken''
Zo'n hoogwaardig landschap vraagt ook om de regie die het Rijk nu zegt te hernemen, volgens Geuze. 'žHet gaat om existentile, integrale keuzes, zoals de hervorming van de landbouw, waterbeheer, een hoge snelheidslijn of nieuwe datacentra. Dat moet je democratisch borgen en daar is het parlement voor.''
De grote verbouwing zal daarom moeten beginnen met het doorbreken van de huidige praktijk. Volgens Geuze is ruimtelijke ordening verworden 'žtot een ondoorgrondelijke lobby'' van belangenorganisaties bij de (lokale) overheid, waardoor het algemeen belang in de verdrukking is geraakt. 'žNederland heeft de beste planningstraditie van de wereld. Maar op dit moment zitten we in een volstrekte impasse. Het gaat buitenparlementair, het is een democratisch tekort.''
Nieuwsbrief NRC De Haagse Stemming
Volg politiek Den Haag op de voet en word zelf een Haagse ingewijde
Een versie vandit artikelverscheen ook in
de krantvan 26 juli 2022
Nederland is koploper gasbesparen, maar de cijfers zijn wel wat vertekend
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:44
Deze fabriek bij Shell Pernis kan waterstof maken uit zware stookolie of asfalt. Waterstof, dat hier normaal uit aardgas wordt geproduceerd, is nodig om diesel en benzine te ontzwavelen. Beeld Raymond Rutting / de Volkskrant
Nederland lijkt op zijn sloffen de dinsdag gemaakte Europese afspraak te halen om minstens 15 procent minder gas te verbruiken. De afgelopen maanden nam de zucht naar aardgas al met ruim 30 procent af. Daarmee lijkt Nederland een lichtend voorbeeld voor Duitsland. Dat is veel afhankelijker van Russisch gas, maar wist tot nu toe slechts een paar procentpunten besparing bijeen te sprokkelen.
Het ministerie van Economische Zaken en Klimaat hamerde de afgelopen maanden met campagnes op gasbesparing. Maar het weet opmerkelijk genoeg niet welke sectoren de afgelopen tijd het meeste gas hebben bespaard. Ook Gasunie zegt in het duister te tasten. 'Dit is voor ons niet traceerbaar', aldus een woordvoerder.
Het Centraal Bureau voor de Statistiek weet meer: de besparingen komen voor een groot deel van de industrie, die recentelijk gemiddeld 40 procent minder aardgas verbruikte. Met name de zeer energie-intensieve chemie- en aardoliesector scoren goed; die laatste verbruikte in juli tweederde minder gas. Raffinaderijen gebruiken een kleine 4 procent van al het gas, en verminderden dat met tweederde.
Vertekend beeld Maar de cijfers zijn vertekend. Een groot deel van het lagere gasverbruik komt doordat twee van Europa's grootste raffinaderijen '' waaronder een van Shell '' de afgelopen maanden stillagen voor onderhoud, zegt Erik Klooster, directeur van brancheorganisatie VNPI. Daardoor was het verbruik een fractie van het normale. Maar nu de raffinaderij van Shell wordt herstart, zal ook de gasconsumptie weer stijgen.
Al gebeurt er meer: in Pernis worden nu grotere hoeveelheden restgassen gebruikt om het kraakproces op gang te houden. Die gassen worden gewoonlijk onder meer gebruikt voor de productie van lpg. Shell zegt ook meer waterstof (onder andere nodig om diesel en benzine te ontzwavelen) te maken uit zware stookolie en asfalt. Zo wordt op aardgas bespaard. Als Pernis straks weer volop draait, komt de besparingsgrens van 15 procent niet in gevaar. Nederland zal niet onder de 20 procent komen, denkt Gasunie, mits de winter niet te streng wordt en nieuwe tegenslagen uitblijven. Gastekorten zullen dan niet optreden.
De industrie maakt zich desondanks zorgen. 'Ik geloof niet dat we rustig kunnen gaan slapen, zoals Den Haag zegt', zegt Hans Gr¼nfeld, directeur van VEMW, de belangenvereniging van grote energieverbruikers. Want de daling van het verbruik is zeker niet alleen te danken aan efficiencyverbeteringen, zegt Gr¼nfeld. Die zijn op jaarbasis goed voor 1 tot 3 procent. De hoge prijzen zijn een belangrijker oorzaak. 'Het kan dus niet anders dat sectoren de productie afschakelen.'
Glas, karton en papier Onder meer de energie-intensieve verpakkingsindustrie die glas, karton en papier produceert, draait al op een lager pitje, net als sommige chemie- en kunstmestfabrieken, zegt Gr¼nfeld, al wil hij geen namen noemen. Doordat dit soort bedrijven vaak mondiaal opereren, kan een deel van de Nederlandse productie worden opgevangen door fabrieken elders.
De vooruitzichten zijn somber. Toen Gazprom de toevoer via de belangrijke Nord Stream 1 verbinding deze week afkneep tot 20 procent, stegen de gasprijzen verder. Woensdag werd kort een niveau van 227 euro per megawattuur bereikt. Begin juni schommelde de prijs rond de 80 euro. Gr¼nfeld: 'Ik vrees dat we wat prijzen betreft het ergste nog niet hebben gehad.'
Energieminister Rob Jetten overlegt momenteel met 251 grootverbruikers over een afschakelplan, mochten fysieke tekorten ontstaan en bedrijven worden gedwongen de productie te staken. In het plan wordt rekening gehouden met 'keteneffecten', bedrijven verderop in de productielijn die mogelijk essentile producten leveren en niet stil mogen komen te liggen. Na de zomer is het plan gereed, maar Gasunie verwacht dat het komende winter niet gebruikt hoeft te worden.
Vooral huishoudens getroffen Ook veel consumenten zien de winter met angst en beven tegemoet. De vorige piek van 200 euro van kort na de inval in Oekra¯ne duurde kort, daarna daalden de prijzen weer wat. Niets is zeker, zeggen analisten. Maar als de toevoer vanuit Rusland zo laag blijft als nu of zelfs stokt, is de kans groot dat de handelsprijzen lange tijd op het huidige extreem hoge niveau zullen blijven.
Volgens het Centraal Planbureau zijn de lasten scheef verdeeld en belandt de hoge energierekening nu vooral bij huishoudens, die hun koopkracht sterk zagen verminderen. Hun energierekening zal de komende tijd waarschijnlijk opnieuw fors stijgen. Hierdoor zal de vraag naar aardgas verder dalen. Nederland zal dus voldoen aan de Europese besparingsregels, maar tegen een hoge prijs. 'Leveringszekerheid is voor Noordwest-Europa intussen niet meer het wezenlijke probleem', constateert analist Jilles van den Beukel van The Hague Centre for Strategic Studies. 'Betaalbaarheid is dat wel.'
Correctie: In een eerdere versie van dit artikel stond dat ook een raffinaderij van BP stil lag. Dat klopt niet.
Gastekort Duitsland 'nog af te wenden' Een gastekort in Duitsland is nog te voorkomen, als industrie en consument meer gas weten te besparen. Dat zegt Klaus M¼ller, het hoofd van de Bundesnetzagentur, de Duitse gasverdeler. Duitsland zit al een maand in alarmfase 2 van zijn gasnoodplan. Daardoor mogen gasleveranciers de verhoogde prijzen van gas doorberekenen naar consumenten. Dit moet leiden tot minder gasconsumptie. Als dat niet voldoende gebeurt, of als Rusland de gaskraan verder dichtknijpt dan gehoopt, kan de federale regering overgaan op alarmfase 3 en rantsoeneert de overheid het gas. M¼ller hoopt op minder verbruik, zodat de reserves tijdig aangevuld kunnen worden.
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The future of cars is a subscription nightmare - The Verge
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:15
As cars get more expensive to make and profit margins dwindle, automakers are coming up with new and loathsome ways to squeeze more money out of their customers. Subscription-based access to vehicle features, like heated seats or remote-start key fobs, are the latest attempt to charge people for things their car already came with. The question is whether customers are going to lay down and take it.
Earlier this week, some media outlets noticed that BMW was selling $18-a-month subscriptions to heated seats in a number of countries, including South Korea. The German automaker had previously tried and failed to get customers to pay $80 a month for access to Apple CarPlay and Android Auto '-- features that are otherwise free in other companies' vehicles. But even after BMW reversed its decision to force people to pay for something that used to be free, it was clear that it wouldn't stop there.
It's a troubling trend, considering how much people freaking hate it
Cars are more full of computers and software than ever before, which has made it possible for automakers to add new features or patch problems on the fly with over-the-air software updates. This has also presented these automakers with new ways of making money. BMW isn't alone '-- Volkswagen, Toyota, Audi, Cadillac, Porsche, and Tesla have all dabbled in subscription models for certain options, such as driver-assist features or voice recognition. It's a troubling trend, considering how much people freaking hate it.
Earlier this year, Cox Automotive conducted a survey of 217 people who intend to buy a new car over the next two years. Only 25 percent said they'd be willing to pay a monthly or annual fee to unlock a feature in their vehicle. The remaining 75 percent said piss off.
Of those 25 percent that don't mind subscription, the features they'd be willing to pay an annual or monthly fee generally fell into three buckets: safety features like lane-keep assist or automatic emergency braking (although automakers have agreed to make the latter standard in new vehicles starting this year); vehicle performance features, like extra torque or horsepower; and creature comforts, like heated or cooling seats or steering wheels.
''For automakers to achieve their revenue aspirations by charging consumers extra for features and services, they have work to do,'' Cox's Michelle Krebs said.
''For automakers to achieve their revenue aspirations by charging consumers extra for features and services, they have work to do''
Most of the subscription plans seem to be coming mainly from luxury automakers, which makes sense given that their customers are mostly rich and can more easily absorb an annual or monthly fee. But industry analysts have said that subscriptions are coming to mass-market vehicles as mainstream automakers look for new revenue streams to help fund their enormously expensive plans to build vehicles that are electric, connected, and autonomous.
Last year, General Motors said it earned over $2 billion in in-car subscription service revenue, a number the company expects to grow to $25 billion by the end of the decade. That would essentially put GM in the same league as Netflix, Spotify, and Peloton.
Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge GM has approximately 16 million vehicles on the road in the US, about a quarter of which include features for which customers are paying subscriptions. ''Our research indicates that with the right mix of compelling offerings, customers are willing to spend $135 per month on average for products and services,'' Alan Wexler, SVP of innovation and growth at GM, said during a presentation at the company's investor event in December 2021.
This would represent a titanic shift in how vehicles are marketed and sold. Typically, a car's factory-equipped options are permanent, regardless of whether it's 10 years old or whether it's been sold two or three times over.
This would represent a titanic shift in how vehicles are marketed and sold
That's changed in recent years, thanks in some part to the popularity of Tesla and the advent of over-the-air software updates. Elon Musk's company pioneered microtransactions and currently sells access to a variety of features after purchase. It even used to ship cars with battery packs that had their range limited by software, and owners could pay a fee to unlock the full capacity. Some experts predict this could actually encourage automakers to provide more software updates to help vehicles evolve after purchase. But the idea that automakers will keep their worst impulses in check seems naive on the surface.
For a while, it seemed like the car itself would become a subscription. A number of automakers thought they could charge people a monthly fee to access a variety of different models as an alternative to ownership or vehicle leases. Turns out that people weren't into it: Ford, BMW, Cadillac, and Mercedes-Benz have all pulled the plug on their vehicle subscription services. Other companies are still plugging away, but the ideal price point remains elusive.
Photo by James Bareham / The Verge This may all seem preordained, but it's not a guarantee, especially if car companies flub the sales pitch. In the case of heated seats or range-limited battery packs, customers are essentially paying companies to remove a software block on a functionality that already exists. Some customers might be persuaded to pay an extra fee on something that requires constant software updates, like automated traffic alerts. Other stuff, like heated steering wheels or Apple CarPlay, just looks like automakers trying to bilk their customers for stuff they should only have to pay for once.
''Automakers sure want customers to get used to this, but frankly, I'm skeptical this will fly,'' said Sam Abuelsamid, principal analyst at Guidehouse Insights, an industry consulting firm.
''I'm skeptical this will fly''
Abuelsamid noted that cars are more expensive than ever, with the average car price cresting $48,000 for the first time ever this month. And with the industry shifting to producing more electric vehicles, that average cost is expected to rise even more. People are already feeling squeezed by dealers, so it's not likely they will embrace the idea of paying even more money on a recurring basis for access to certain comfort features.
Unless automakers lower the purchase price of new vehicles to offset the subscriptions, customers aren't likely to afford all the nickel and diming, Abuelsamid said. ''I think automakers will have to back down on either pricing or how many things they want to turn into subscriptions,'' he said.
Role of termites in methane emission - Green Clean Guide
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 14:24
Greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from natural resources have considerable impacts on climate change. Global methane (a potent greenhouse gas) emissions from natural sources are around 20,80,00,000 metric tonnes per year (EPA, April 2010). Terrestrial arthropod-like termite contributes to the methane emission resulting from their digestive system. Global emissions of methane due to termites are estimated to be between 20,00,000 and 2,20,00,000 metric tonnes per year (EPA, April 2010). Nobel Laureate Dr. Steven Chu has stated in an interview with UC Berkeley that, termites have developed a symbiotic relationship with colonies of bacteria that can break complex molecular structure of organic compounds like cellulose to form energy and methane as a byproduct.
A group of highly social insects, termites are detrivores i.e. obtain nutrients by consuming decomposing organic matter. Mostly sub-tropical and tropical regions are a home of termites. Termites form colonies and live together in an organised manner. Termite's colony contains Nymphs- semi-mature young, Workers, Soldiers, and reproductive individual- egg-laying Queen. Dead plant material, litter, wood, animal dung, etc are food for termites. About 10% of termites' species are identified as pest; causing damages to the crops, buildings and forests.
Biological classification of termites
Img Source: wikipedia
Phylum:ArthrpodaClass:InsectaSubclass:PterygotaInfraclass:NeopteraSuper order:DictyopteraOrder:IsopteraMethane is produced in termites as part of their normal digestive process. Methanogenic (Methane producing) bacteria are found abundant in the guts of termites. Overall process is given in the following diagram;
Methane (CH4) is emitted from both anthropogenic and natural sources. As discussed above, natural sources of emission like termites release a significant quantity of methane to the atmosphere. Methane has 21 times more global warming potential compared to other GHGs. Increasing concentration of methane may cause additional warming of the planet. The climatic cycle is not new to the earth. Since the beginning of life on earth or even before, emission and sink of GHGs are happening over the period of time. We can't conclude only the natural sources of GHG emissions are being responsible for climate change but they can contribute a bit of it.
18.483418 73.905765
About The AuthorShaileshShailesh is post graduate in Environment Management from Forest Research Institute (FRI) University, Dehradun, India. Presently he is working in the areas of Environmental and Renewable Energy Advisory Services. He has started GreenCleanGuide.com during his college days.
"Texas Drinking Water Makes Pipes And Plumbing Radioactive" | SEJ
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 14:22
"HOUSTON -- Radiation has contaminated the underground pipes, water tanks, and plumbing that provide drinking water for much of Central Texas and the famed Texas Hill Country, according to concerned city officials in the region who have tested the pipes with Geiger counters.
According to local officials, the contamination comes from years of exposure to drinking water that already tests over federal legal limits for radioactive radium. Of even more concern, they say, is that any water quality testing is done before the water runs through the contaminated pipes that could be adding even more radiation.
'It's a serious concern,' City of Brady Manager James Minor said. 'These pipes have so much radioactivity in them, metal recycling places refer to them as they're "hot."'"
Mark Greenblatt reports for KHOU 11 News, Houston, May 18, 2011.
Ohio, US power plant successfully blends hydrogen
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 14:21
A gas-fired power plant in Ohio US, had successfully been run with a 5% hydrogen blend, it was revealed today (July 22).
General Hydrogen Corporation's plant in Proctor, West Virginia supplied Long Ridge Energy Terminal's 485MW natural gas-fired power plant in Hannibal, Ohio, with hydrogen gas during the test, with a view to utilise 100% hydrogen in its process over time.
H2 View understands that Long Ridge has also responded to the US Department of Energy's (DOE) Request for Information (RFI), after the US Congress approved $8bn for regional hydrogen hubs, including the Appalachian natural gas region.
Read more: US DOE calls for public input on hydrogen hub plans
Sunny Punj, Chief Operating Officer of CGI Group of Companies and General Hydrogen Corporation, commented, ''This is a great beginning to delivering a carbon-free future. With our capability to supply hydrogen gas, we are playing an integral part in the process to drive the transition to a cleaner energy future for the region and beyond.''
Joe Manchin, US Senator and Chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, said, ''West Virginia is home to abundant natural resources and innovative companies like General Hydrogen Corporation that are vital to our nation's energy transition.
''Partnerships like this are great news for our state and will help spur manufacturing across the Mountain State that will bring long-term, good-paying jobs and revitalise our communities.''
In 2020, Long Ridge announced plans to transition the plant to run on carbon-free hydrogen in collaboration with New Fortress Energy and GE, in an effort to clean up its power generation.
Read more:Long Ridge Energy to convert Ohio-based power plant to hydrogen
Bo Wholey, CEO of Long Ridge Energy, said, ''The partnership between General Hydrogen Corporation and Long Ridge is another significant step towards our transition to clean hydrogen power. Our goal at Long Ridge is to be a leader in providing clean, affordable power and to create and attract well-paying jobs and economic development opportunities regionally.''
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In a paradox, cleaner air is now adding to global warming | Science | AAAS
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 14:01
It's one of the paradoxes of global warming. Burning coal or gasoline releases the greenhouse gases that drive climate change. But it also lofts pollution particles that reflect sunlight and cool the planet, offsetting a fraction of the warming. Now, however, as pollution-control technologies spread, both the noxious clouds and their silver lining are starting to dissipate.
Using an array of satellite observations, researchers have found that the climatic influence of global air pollution has dropped by up to 30% from 2000 levels. Although this is welcome news for public health'--airborne fine particles, or aerosols, are believed to kill several million people per year'--it is bad news for global warming. The cleaner air has effectively boosted the total warming from carbon dioxide emitted over the same time by anywhere from 15% to 50%, estimates Johannes Quaas, a climate scientist at Leipzig University and lead author of the study. And as air pollution continues to be curbed, he says, ''There is a lot more of this to come.''
''I believe their conclusions are correct,'' says James Hansen, a retired NASA climate scientist who first called attention to the ''Faustian bargain'' of fossil fuel pollution in 1990. He says it's impressive scientific detective work because no satellite could directly measure global aerosols over this whole period. ''It's like deducing the properties of unobserved dark matter by looking at its gravitational effects.'' Hansen expects a flurry of follow-up work, as researchers seek to quantify the boost to warming.
Some aerosols, such as black carbon, or soot, absorb heat. But reflective sulfate and nitrate particles have a cooling effect. For many years, they formed from polluting gases escaping from car tailpipes, ship flues, and power plant smokestacks. Technologies to scrub or eliminate this pollution have spread slowly from North America and Europe to the developing world. Only in 2010 did air pollution in China begin to decline, for example, and international restrictions on sulfur-heavy ship fuel have come just in the past few years.
The new study, submitted as a preprint to Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics in April and expected for publication in the next few months, grew directly out of last year's U.N. climate assessment. It included studies showing aerosol declines in North America and Europe but no clear global trends. Quaas and his co-authors thought two NASA satellites, Terra and Aqua, operating since 1999 and 2002, might be able to help.
The satellites tally Earth's incoming and outgoing radiation, which has enabled several research groups, including Quaas and his colleagues, to track the increase in infrared heat trapped by greenhouse gases. But one instrument on Aqua and Terra has also shown a decline in reflected light. Models suggested a decrease in aerosols is partly responsible, says Venkatachalam Ramaswamy, director of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Geophysical Fluid Dynamics Laboratory. ''It's very hard to find alternate reasons for this,'' he says.
Quaas and his co-authors have now taken things a step further with two instruments on Terra and Aqua that record the haziness of the sky'--and therefore its aerosol load. From 2000 to 2019, haze over North America, Europe, and East Asia clearly declined, although it continued to thicken over coal-dependent India.
Aerosols don't just reflect light on their own; they can also alter clouds. By serving as nuclei on which water vapor condenses, pollution particles reduce cloud droplet size and increase their number, making clouds more reflective. Reducing pollution should undo the effect'--and using the same instruments, Quaas and his team found a clear decrease in cloud droplet concentrations in the same regions where aerosols declined.
The evidence in the paper is clear, says Joyce Penner, an atmospheric scientist at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. ''It's remarkable that we're seeing this already,'' she says. ''This is contributing a lot to the climate changes we're seeing in the current era.''
Just how much this declining reflectivity has boosted recent warming is hard to quantify, says Stuart Jenkins, a doctoral student at the University of Oxford who is also studying the aerosol decline. In forthcoming work, Jenkins will show there's just too much natural variability in the past 20 years to pick out the effect of clearer skies.
Whatever the exact contribution, it is sure to grow as air quality continues to improve around the world. The answer isn't to keep polluting, says Jan Cermak, a remote-sensing scientist at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology. ''Air pollution kills people. We need clean air. There is no question about that.'' Instead, efforts to reduce greenhouse gases need to be redoubled, he says.
But with Earth having warmed by some 1.2°C since preindustrial times, Hansen thinks there's little hope of cutting emissions fast enough to meet the 1.5°C target he and other scientists have called for. And so the solution, he says, could come back to aerosols, this time ones spread deliberately through solar geoengineering'--the controversial idea of lofting sulfate particles into the stratosphere and creating a global, reflective haze. ''It will be necessary to take temporary corrective measures,'' he says, ''almost surely including temporary purposeful use of aerosols to avoid catastrophic implications.''
FDA's top tobacco scientist takes job at Marlboro-maker Philip Morris | Ars Technica
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 13:59
FDA '-- This is Philip Morris' second FDA hire recently. Beth Mole - Jul 27, 2022 11:13 pm UTC
The top tobacco scientist at the Food and Drug Administration has left his job to go work for tobacco giant Philip Morris International (PMI), best known as the maker of Marlboro cigarettes.
It is the second high-profile FDA hire by PMI in recent months, and it comes at a time when the FDA is struggling to regulate the evolving smoking and vaping products by companies such as PMI. Earlier this month, for instance, the FDA announced an embarrassing backpedal in its bungled attempt to ban Juul e-cigarette products. Juul'--largely blamed for an epidemic of youth vaping'--is partly owned by Altria, which spun-off PMI in 2008.
On Tuesday, Matt Holman, director of the Office of Science at the FDA's Center for Tobacco Products (CTP), announced his departure, effective immediately, to accept a position at PMI. Holman, a biochemist by training, was at the FDA for over 20 years and director of the CTP's Office of Science since 2017.
In a memo later Tuesday, CTP Director Brian King relayed the news of Holman's exit to staff and noted that he had been on leave for an unspecified amount of time. Holman had "recused himself, consistent with agency ethics policies, from all CTP/FDA work while exploring career opportunities outside of government," King wrote.
Advertisement In a statement, an FDA spokesperson added that "agency employees are free to pursue employment outside of the government and are required to immediately disclose that they are exploring opportunities outside the government."
Regulatory headachesIt's unclear when Holman had recused himself, but it appears to have been less than four months ago. On March 18, Holman signed off on the third generation of PMI's heated, smokeless tobacco product, IQOS. Holman also signed off on PMI's initial IQOS application in 2020.
Meanwhile, in May, PMI hired Keagan Lenihan, who had held the positions of FDA's associate commissioner for external affairs and strategic initiatives and then the FDA's chief of staff. At PMI, she is now vice president of government affairs and public policy and head of the company's DC office. PMI has not disclosed the title of Holman's new role.
The moves come as the FDA struggles to keep up with e-cigarettes and new vaping products. In addition to the recent Juul fiasco, the FDA missed a court-ordered deadline last September to issue decisions on specific e-cigarettes, including Juul. The FDA said earlier this month that it is trying to process around 1 million non-tobacco nicotine products submitted by more than 200 manufacturers.
Last week, FDA Commissioner Robert Califf announced that he had commissioned an external review of the CTP and its food program. The move acknowledged that the agency was stumbling in its regulatory responsibilities. "We have made important progress and reached regulatory decisions on a broad array of millions of products," Califf said of the CTP. "But even greater challenges lie ahead as we determine how the agency will navigate complex policy issues and determine enforcement activities for an increasing number of novel products that could potentially have significant consequences for public health."
Could grasshoppers really replace beef? - BBC Future
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 13:21
Could grasshoppers really replace beef?
(Image credit: Michele Sibiloni/Getty Images)
For most people in Europe and the US, the idea of eating crickets and grasshoppers can seem revolting, but they are a popular snack in parts of Africa and Asia. Not only are they packed with nutrients but they are less harmful to the climate too.
The air in my family home in Uganda was filled with a distinct aroma, not dissimilar to the smell of beef being grilled. It was December 2000 and my sister, Maggie, was frying grasshoppers. The more she stirred the green, crispy locust-like insects, the stronger and richer the aroma became. As they sizzled and steam rose from the pan, my taste buds tingled '' I couldn't wait to eat this delicious snack.
This wasn't my first experience of eating grasshoppers '' I used to eat them regularly during my childhood. In Uganda, grasshoppers are a nutritious delicacy and a much sought-after snack.
On that occasion in 2000, I harvested the grasshoppers myself for the first time. These insects, which breed around Lake Victoria in east Africa, swarm at night and land in the dewy grass near our family home at around daybreak. On this occasion, together with my teenage peers, I spent the day picking the bugs out of the grass on a hill above my home in Hoima, western Uganda. I felt a sense of pride as I returned with a large bag full of these insects for the pot.
The smell of the grasshoppers always reminds me of Christmas '' a perfect time for harvesting the insects as the seasons change from wet November to dry January. At Christmas, I would often choose to eat grasshoppers over beef as I preferred the taste.
Some 22 years later, in June this year, I was feeling nostalgic for this taste of home, so I decided to recreate some of my favourite grasshopper snacks. It gave me the idea for an experiment '' could I swap all the meat in my diet for these crunchy critters? I had heard about the sustainability benefits of eating insects and was intrigued to find out how much I could lower my carbon footprint if I introduced grasshoppers as my main source of protein.
I now live in Kampala, Uganda's capital '' a dense city without grassland where the grasshoppers can land. During Uganda's two grasshopper seasons, '' May-June and December-January '' when the insects swarm in massive numbers across Africa's grasslands and open bushes, Kampala's residents rely on vendors to supply these tasty bugs. The vendors use bright electric lights to lure the grasshoppers and trap them. They burn fresh grass, using the smoke to make the insects dizzy, causing them to fly into iron sheets and fall into empty oil drums.
In Uganda's capital city, Kampala, street vendors use bright lights and smoke to catch grasshoppers (Credit: Michele Sibion/Getty Images)
The grasshopper trade is a booming business. Every season the streets of Kampala crawl with vendors, who can earn around 760,000 Ugandan Shillings (USh), or about $200/£162, per season. For one plastic cup full of live grasshoppers, with their wings and legs plucked off, I pay 20,000Ush ($5.26/£4.40).
When I return home, I wash the insects in a bowl and place them in a dry pan, covering it and putting it over a low flame for around 20 minutes, occasionally stirring to ensure the insects don't burn.
About an hour later, the grasshoppers start to sizzle and their colour changes from green to yellow as they yield fat, allowing me to fry them without cooking oil. At this point, the beefy aroma starts to emerge, growing stronger as I stir every five minutes or so until their colour turns a golden brown. I then add onions, hot pepper and salt.
The insects continue frying until the fat dissolves, and the bugs start to sound crunchy as they hit the pan as I stir. After another 30 minutes, the grasshoppers develop a crunchy texture like crisps and are ready to eat.
The beauty of grasshoppers is that you can eat them with many types of food in the same way you would eat chicken wings with French fries. Over the four days of my experiment, I ate grasshoppers with cassava, potatoes, rice and cowpeas stew.
A cup of grasshoppers is slightly more expensive than a kilogram (2.2lbs) of beef, which goes for around 13,000USh (£2.86/$3.42). However, with only one cup of grasshoppers, I made three meals.
On the second day, I had grasshoppers and potatoes, which I normally eat with meat or bean stew. On the third and fourth day, I paired the grasshoppers with rice and cowpeas stew.
To me, grasshoppers are like popcorn '' a snack that I never want to stop eating and don't get bored of. While I personally find beef starts to taste bland if I eat it too often, my appetite for grasshoppers didn't wane, even after eating it four days in a row. The only challenge, though, is that my jaws started to hurt a little on the third day, from biting into the crunchy bugs all week. Another downside was that the salty grasshoppers' left me feeling incredibly thirsty.
It took longer than I had anticipated to prepare grasshoppers, which made me realise how much effort and time my sisters used to put into this process. But cooking them is not a complicated or demanding task '' I often read a book while waiting for them to cook. While I used onions and hot pepper to fry them, extra ingredients aren't necessary as the grasshoppers are delicious in themselves.
Sustainable protein
Grasshoppers are a protein-rich and sustainable snack. They play an important role in improving nutrition, food security and employment in east Africa, says Leonard Alfonce, a researcher in entomology at Sokoine University of Tanzania, who believes the insects should be cultivated as a sustainable food source throughout the year.
"The edible grasshoppers are highly valued and their trading is a source of income in Uganda," Alfonce says. "Optimising mass rearing protocols for edible grasshoppers would ensure their year-round supply to enhance nutrition, food security, and livelihoods in East Africa."
In terms of nutritional content, the long-horned grasshoppers, known as Nsenene in Uganda, constitute 34-45% protein, 42-54% fat and 4-6% fibre. Insects generally are packed with vitamins and amino acids.
Then there are the sustainability benefits. Insect cultivation uses a fraction of the land, energy and water required for traditional farming, and has a significantly lower carbon footprint. (Watch our video on how insects are the missing link in our food chain on BBC Reel.)
The art and science of eating insects
Peter Alexander, a senior researcher in global food security at the University of Edinburgh, in the UK, estimates that I might have reduced the carbon emissions from my diet by a factor of ten by substituting beef for grasshoppers as my main source of protein. "What we choose to eat really matters for the emissions associated with our diets," he says.
Replacing half of the meat eaten worldwide with mealworms and crickets could reduce farmland use by a third, freeing up 1,680 million hectares, equivalent to around 70 times the area of the UK, and reducing global emissions, according to a study by Alexander and other researchers at the University of Edinburgh.
Insects also have a high food conversation rate '' for instance crickets need six times less feed than cattle, four times less than sheep and two times less than pigs and chickens to produce the same amount of protein.
Cultivating insects produces significantly fewer greenhouse gases than livestock production '' especially when you consider the transport of livestock and feeds which accounts for 18% of these emissions.
SUSTAINABILITY ON A SHOESTRINGWe currently live in an unsustainable world. While the biggest gains in the fight to curb climate change will come from the decisions made by governments and industries, we can all play our part. In Sustainability on a Shoestring, BBC Future explores how each of us can contribute as individuals to reducing carbon emissions by living more sustainably, without breaking the bank.
Crickets, for example, produce up to 80% less methane than cows and 8-12 times less ammonia than pigs, according to a study by researchers at the University of Wageningen in the Netherlands. Methane is a highly potent gas with a global warming impact 84 times higher than CO2 over a 20-year period and ammonia pollution has been linked to soil acidification, groundwater pollution and ecosystem damage.
Insects can also eat organic waste, helping to reduce the emissions that occur as this waste rots, and also reducing the overall emissions per kg of food more generally.
"I agree the emission intensities for many protein-rich insects are many times lower than any animal-based food," says Atul Jain, a researcher who specialises in climate change's impact on agriculture and food supply at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in the US. "But they are not produced at the industrial level, like beef or any other food commodity. So, it will not be a fair comparison of the greenhouse gas emissions for any diet, plant-based or animal-based."
But given all their benefits, could insects be farmed more widely?
"Insects are easy to raise compared to animals. You can have an insect farm in the basement and in your house and you will have a million insects in a few days," says Bill Broadbent, the president of Entosense, a US company on a mission to make edible insects part of Americans' daily diet.
While insects might not replace meat altogether, they represent a significant alternative protein source in a world likely to struggle with food scarcity over the coming years as the global population continues to grow, says Broadbent.
In many parts of Asia and Africa, insects are fried and sold as a popular snack (Credit: Bob Henry/Getty Images)
For instance, for every kg of high-quality animal protein produced, livestock are fed around 6kg of plant protein. It's estimated that an increase in agricultural costs, such as fertiliser and animal feed, will result in a rise of over 30% in prices for beef, pork and poultry by 2050. It's also thought that these prices might increase by an additional 18-21% due to climate change and falling agricultural productivity, which will drive up feed costs, amplifying the need for alternative protein sources.
Growing demand for edible insects
Around 2,000 insect species are eaten worldwide in countries across Africa, South America and Asia. Thailand has a particularly thriving insect industry, with 20,000 farms producing 7,500 tonnes of bugs per year. But many people in Europe and the US are still hesitant to eat insects despite their excellent taste and environmental and nutritional benefits, missing an opportunity to reduce the carbon footprint of their diets.
While living in the UK between 2019 and 2021, I struggled to buy edible grasshoppers. In December 2021, I was craving grasshoppers after seeing images of this tasty snack all over my social media feeds, shared by Ugandan friends celebrating the start of the grasshopper season. My search for the Ugandan delicacy took me to east and west London and Leeds, but I couldn't find any.
Indroneel Chatterjee, a researcher in consumer psychology and marketing at Oxford Brookes University, in the UK, says people looking for edible insects in the UK should start with crickets and mealworms, which are more readily available than grasshoppers. "There may be supply chain issues that restrict [the] availability [of grasshoppers] as they aren't currently mass produced in the UK, making them difficult to procure," says Chatterjee.
There are also concerns that widespread wild harvesting of insects in some countries could only place more pressure on declining of insect populations already threatened by changing climate, disease and pesticides.
There are, however, a growing number of companies in Europe and the US that specialise in raising edible insects. Located in St Davids in Wales, Bug Farm, the UK's first edible insect farm, sells a wide range of insect snacks, including chocolate cookies made from crickets and spiced orange and laverbread buffalo insect biscuits. It also sells cricket powder and whole crickets for cooking and baking at home.
Bug Farm believes encouraging children to try insects could increase their appeal. "Children, in particular, are very open minded, so we believe that working with them is how we can change attitudes in the long term: they are the shoppers of the future," says Elinor Philp who works at Bug Farm.
Bug Farm has developed a new type of food, VEXo, made with insect and plant protein and they served it in bolognese to 200 Welsh school children during a pilot project in 2019. Before trying VEXo, 27% of the pupils said they would pick it for school lunch, but after tasting it, 56% said they would choose it.
"We strongly believe that, if young people have learned about edible insects and VEXo, when they start buying for their families in years to come, they will say: 'Oh yeah, insects: they're just another type of food'," Philp says.
Bug Farm says grinding dried insects into power and including them in dishes is one of the best ways of appealing to people who are hesitant about eating bugs.
Aly Moore, who is popularising edible insects through her blog Bugible, says she uses cricket powder in her breakfast protein shake every morning. "It's the best for protein bioavailability, other nutrients, sustainability, and it's non-bloating," she says. "I cannot recommend it more highly."
Moore, who is the chief communications officer at Chapul Farms '' a company involved in building and operating insect farms in the US, tried grasshoppers for the first time on a trip to Mexico in 2012.
"I was curious and decided to try them out. It turned out they were delicious and that changed my life forever," she says. "I am [now] working full time with bugs."
She is hopeful that insect eating will catch on in Europe and the US. "There is a lot of research going on and the insect industry is experiencing rapid growth," she says.
Attitudes are already shifting and demand for edible insects is growing '' by 2027, the edible insects market is projected to reach $4.63bn (£3.36bn).
Edible insects are no longer only sold by specialist stores, but stocked by European supermarket chains including Carrefour and Sainsbury's while cricket milkshakes feature on the menu of US fast food chain Wayback Burgers.
If insects are to replace beef and other meats, they will need to be intensively farmed like at this facility in the Netherlands (Credit: Ton Koene/Alamy)
But even if you don't plan to buy edible insects soon, you may already be eating them. They can inadvertently find their way into food, either by being caught up in fresh produce we eat or accidentally mixed into products such as pasta, cakes and bread. The Food and Drug Administration in the US even has tolerances for how much insect contamination it will allow in food before it has to be withdrawn. A 100g (3.6oz) bar of chocolate, for example, can contain up to 60 insect fragments (parts of insects rather than a whole body) before the FDA takes regulatory action. Wheat flour can have up to 75 insect parts in every 50g (1.8oz), while macaroni and noodles can have up to 225 insect parts for every 225g (8oz).
"It is just not worth the energy to remove every fragment of insect when harvesting crops," says Philp.
It is also worth noting that some species of fig rely upon pollination by a specialised fig wasp, which lays its eggs inside the fruit before dying inside the fruit. But the wasp's body is quickly digested by an enzyme ficin, which is produced by the fig, effectively leaving little of the wasp behind. This has still led to debates among some vegans about whether they can eat the fruit. The crunchy texture inside a fig, however, is not caused by wasp body parts but instead by seeds. Most figs sold in modern supermarkets are pollinated without wasps at all.
But even putting this incidental ingestion to one side, many scientists believe the widespread squeamishness over eating insects may need to change if the world hopes to meet its twin goals of providing more nutritious food for everyone with a lower environmental impact.
In the meantime, I am looking forward to the next grasshopper season so I can enjoy my favourite snack.
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Google, like Amazon, may let police see your video without a warrant - The Verge
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 12:23
Arlo, Apple, Wyze, and Anker, owner of Eufy, all confirmed to CNET that they won't give authorities access to your smart home camera's footage unless they're shown a warrant or court order. If you're wondering why they're specifying that, it's because we've now learned Google and Amazon can do just the opposite: they'll allow police to get this data without a warrant if police claim there's been an emergency. And while Google says that it hasn't used this power, Amazon's admitted to doing it almost a dozen times this year.
Earlier this month my colleague Sean Hollister wrote about how Amazon, the company behind the smart doorbells and security systems, will indeed give police that warrantless access to customers' footage in those ''emergency'' situations. And as CNET now points out, Google's privacy policy has a similar carveout as Amazon's, meaning law enforcement can access data from its Nest products '-- or theoretically any other data you store with Google '-- without a warrant.
Google and Amazon's information request policies for the US say that in most cases, authorities will have to present a warrant, subpoena, or similar court order before they'll hand over data. This much is true for Apple, Arlo, Anker, and Wyze too '-- they'd be breaking the law if they didn't. Unlike those companies, though, Google and Amazon will make exceptions if a law enforcement submits an emergency request for data.
While their policies may be similar, it appears that the two companies comply with these kinds of requests at drastically different rates. Earlier this month, Amazon disclosed that it had already fulfilled 11 such requests this year. In an email, Google spokesperson Kimberly Taylor told The Verge that the company has never turned over Nest data during an ongoing emergency. Taylor says:
If there is an ongoing emergency where getting Nest data would be critical to addressing the problem, we are, per the TOS, allowed to send that data to authorities. To date, we have never done this, [emphasis theirs] but it's important that we reserve the right to do so.
Here's what Google's information request policy has to say about ''requests for information in emergencies:''
If we reasonably believe that we can prevent someone from dying or from suffering serious physical harm, we may provide information to a government agency '-- for example, in the case of bomb threats, school shootings, kidnappings, suicide prevention, and missing persons cases. We still consider these requests in light of applicable laws and our policies
Taylor also says that Google takes emergency disclosure requests ''very seriously, and have dedicated teams and strict policies in place that are designed to ensure that we provide information that can assist first responders in the event of an emergency while ensuring that we only disclose data that is reasonably necessary to avert an ongoing threat.''
Fulfilling emergency requests is legally allowed, but not mandated
An unnamed Nest spokesperson did tell CNET that the company tries to give its users notice when it provides their data under these circumstances (though it does say that in emergency cases that notice may not come unless Google hears that ''the emergency has passed''). Amazon, on the other hand, declined to tell either The Verge or CNET whether it would even let its users know that it let police access their videos.
Legally speaking, a company is allowed to share this kind of data with police if it believes there's an emergency, but the laws we've seen don't force companies to share. Perhaps that's why Arlo is pushing back against Amazon and Google's practices and suggesting that police should get a warrant if the situation really is an emergency.
''If a situation is urgent enough for law enforcement to request a warrantless search of Arlo's property then this situation also should be urgent enough for law enforcement or a prosecuting attorney to instead request an immediate hearing from a judge for issuance of a warrant to promptly serve on Arlo,'' the company told CNET. Amazon told CNET that it does deny some emergency requests ''when we believe that law enforcement can swiftly obtain and serve us with such a demand.''
Some companies claim they can't even turn over your video.
Apple and Anker's Eufy, meanwhile, claim that even they don't have access to users' video, thanks to the fact that their systems use end-to-end encryption by default. Despite all the partnerships Ring has with police, you can turn on end-to-end encryption for some of its products, though there are a lot of caveats. For one, the feature doesn't work with its battery-operated cameras, which are, you know, pretty much the thing everybody thinks of when they think of Ring. It's also not on by default, and you have to give up a few features to use it, like using Alexa greetings, or viewing Ring videos on your computer. Google, meanwhile, doesn't offer end-to-end encryption on its Nest Cams last we checked.
It's worth stating the obvious: Arlo, Apple, Wyze, and Eufy's policies around emergency requests from law enforcement don't necessarily mean these companies are keeping your data safe in other ways. Last year, Anker apologized after hundreds of Eufy customers had their cameras' feeds exposed to strangers, and it recently came to light that Wyze failed failed to alert its customers to gaping security flaws in some of its cameras that it had known about for years. And while Apple may not have a way to share your HomeKit Secure Video footage, it does comply with other emergency data requests from law enforcement '-- as evidenced by reports that it, and other companies like Meta, shared customer information with hackers sending in phony emergency requests.
Update July 27th, 4:28PM ET: Added statement from Google saying that the company has never sent Nest data to authorities in an emergency situation.
Opinion | Norman Lear: What Archie Bunker Would Have Thought of Donald Trump and Jan. 6 - The New York Times
Wed, 27 Jul 2022 18:45
Opinion | On My 100th Birthday, Reflections on Archie Bunker and Donald Trump https://www.nytimes.com/2022/07/27/opinion/archie-bunker-donald-trump-norman-lear.htmlGuest Essay
July 27, 2022
Carroll O'Connor, who played Archie Bunker, in 1971. Credit... CBS, via Getty Images By Norman Lear
Mr. Lear, a father of six, is an Emmy-winning television producer and a co-founder of the advocacy organization People for the American Way.
Well, I made it. I am 100 years old today. I wake up every morning grateful to be alive.
Reaching my own personal centennial is cause for a bit of reflection on my first century '-- and on what the next century will bring for the people and country I love. To be honest, I'm a bit worried that I may be in better shape than our democracy is.
I was deeply troubled by the attack on Congress on Jan. 6, 2021 '-- by supporters of former President Donald Trump attempting to prevent the peaceful transfer of power. Those concerns have only grown with every revelation about just how far Mr. Trump was willing to go to stay in office after being rejected by voters '-- and about his ongoing efforts to install loyalists in positions with the power to sway future elections.
I don't take the threat of authoritarianism lightly. As a young man, I dropped out of college when the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor and joined the U.S. Army Air Forces. I flew more than 50 missions in a B-17 bomber to defeat fascism consuming Europe. I am a flag-waving believer in truth, justice and the American way, and I don't understand how so many people who call themselves patriots can support efforts to undermine our democracy and our Constitution. It is alarming.
At the same time, I have been moved by the courage of the handful of conservative Republican lawmakers, lawyers and former White House staffers who resisted Mr. Trump's bullying. They give me hope that Americans can find unexpected common ground with friends and family whose politics differ but who are not willing to sacrifice core democratic principles.
Encouraging that kind of conversation was a goal of mine when we began broadcasting ''All in the Family'' in 1971. The kinds of topics Archie Bunker and his family argued about '-- issues that were dividing Americans from one another, such as racism, feminism, homosexuality, the Vietnam War and Watergate '-- were certainly being talked about in homes and families. They just weren't being acknowledged on television.
For all his faults, Archie loved his country and he loved his family, even when they called him out on his ignorance and bigotries. If Archie had been around 50 years later, he probably would have watched Fox News. He probably would have been a Trump voter. But I think that the sight of the American flag being used to attack Capitol Police would have sickened him. I hope that the resolve shown by Representatives Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger, and their commitment to exposing the truth, would have won his respect.
Image Norman Lear in 2021. Credit... Amy Sussman/Getty Images It is remarkable to consider that television '-- the medium for which I am most well-known '-- did not even exist when I was born, in 1922. The internet came along decades later, and then social media. We have seen that each of these technologies can be put to destructive use '-- spreading lies, sowing hatred and creating the conditions for authoritarianism to take root. But that is not the whole story. Innovative technologies create new ways for us to express ourselves, and, I hope, will allow humanity to learn more about itself and better understand one another's ideas, failures and achievements. These technologies have also been used to create connection, community and platforms for the kind of ideological sparring that might have drawn Archie to a keyboard. I can only imagine the creative and constructive possibilities that technological innovation might offer us in solving some of our most intractable problems.
I often feel disheartened by the direction that our politics, courts and culture are taking. But I do not lose faith in our country or its future. I remind myself how far we have come. I think of the brilliantly creative people I have had the pleasure to work with in entertainment and politics, and at People for the American Way, a progressive group I co-founded to defend our freedoms and build a country in which all people benefit from the blessings of liberty. Those encounters renew my belief that Americans will find ways to build solidarity on behalf of our values, our country and our fragile planet.
Those closest to me know that I try to stay forward-focused. Two of my favorite words are ''over'' and ''next.'' It's an attitude that has served me well through a long life of ups and downs, along with a deeply felt appreciation for the absurdity of the human condition.
Reaching this birthday with my health and wits mostly intact is a privilege. Approaching it with loving family, friends and creative collaborators to share my days has filled me with a gratitude I can hardly express.
This is our century, dear reader, yours and mine. Let us encourage one another with visions of a shared future. And let us bring all the grit and openheartedness and creative spirit we can muster to gather together and build that future.
Norman Lear produced ''All in the Family,'' ''Maude,'' ''The Jeffersons'' and ''Good Times,'' among other groundbreaking television shows. He is a member of the Television Academy Hall of Fame and a recipient of the National Medal of Arts and Kennedy Center Honors. An activist and philanthropist, he co-founded and serves on the board of the advocacy organization People for the American Way.
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Preacher, wife robbed of $1 million in jewelry during sermon - The Washington Post
Tue, 26 Jul 2022 14:11
Bishop Lamor Miller-Whitehead was live-streaming his Sunday sermon at the Leaders of Tomorrow International Churches in Brooklyn when he asked his congregation: ''How many of you have lost your faith because you saw somebody else die?''
Moments later, three masked people armed with guns entered the church, according to police.
''All right, all right, all right,'' Miller-Whitehead said as he got down on the ground and lay on flat on his stomach, according to clips of the incident, which was captured on the live stream. One of the intruders stood over Miller-Whitehead, appeared to take objects from the pastor and walked off with them.
All told, the intruders made off with more than $1 million in jewelry belonging to Miller-Whitehead and his 38-year-old wife, the New York City Police Department said in a statement to The Washington Post, adding that an investigation is ongoing and no arrests were made by late Monday.
''I want justice. I want these men arrested,'' Miller-Whitehead, 44, said in an Instagram post on Monday, adding that he's offering a $50,000 reward for ''the arrest and the capture'' of the perpetrators.
In an earlier Instagram post, Miller-Whitehead recounted portions of the incident that unfolded around 11:14 a.m. in Brooklyn's Canarsie neighborhood. He said he was leading his morning service when three to four armed men entered looking ''specifically for me.'' As he lay on the floor, one of the men put a gun to his back, he said. One of them, he said, also pointed the gun at his child's face.
They took his watch, bishop's ring and wedding band, he said. Feeling that Miller-Whitehead had chains under his shirt, one of the men ''ripped my collar off just to get to my jewelry,'' he said. Miller-Whitehead said he felt he was in danger, and it would have been a ''bad situation'' if he had resisted.
''I felt the demonic force,'' he said, adding, ''I felt it push through the door.''
After the thieves took off, Miller-Whitehead said he chased them but lost them. Police said the armed intruders escaped in a white Mercedes.
Miller-Whitehead did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Post early Tuesday.
'Irreplaceable' $2 million gold tabernacle stolen from Brooklyn church
Miller-Whitehead grew up in Brooklyn and started the Leaders of Tomorrow Ministry after spending six years in prison, according to an online bio. He was convicted of identity theft and grand larceny, convictions Miller-Whitehead maintains were illegal, the Associated Press reported. He made headlines in May when he attempted to broker the surrender of a suspect in a fatal subway shooting, the New York Times reported.
In his bio, Miller-Whitehead highlighted his ties to Mayor Eric Adams, saying he had been ''adopted as the mentee'' to Adams, formerly the Brooklyn borough president. Adams told the New York Daily News that he and Miller-Whitehead spoke by phone shortly after the robbery.
''No one in this city should be the victim of armed robbery, let alone our faith leaders and congregants worshiping in a House of God,'' Adams told the Daily News. ''The NYPD is investigating this crime and will work tirelessly to bring the criminals involved to justice.''
Miller-Whitehead said on Instagram on Sunday that his family and ministry were traumatized by the incident. ''It hurts me because my church is hurt,'' he said.
He also pushed back on criticism that his flashiness invited the robbery, saying that shootings have taken place at Brooklyn churches whose pastors were not ''flashy.''
Just in May, a $2 million gold tabernacle was stolen from a Catholic church in Brooklyn.
''Let's not be naive to the fact that the devil is real,'' Miller-Whitehead said.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: protecting the private good? | The BMJ
Tue, 26 Jul 2022 05:07
Jeanne Lenzer , associate editor, The BMJ, USA jlenzer{at}bmj.com After revelations that the CDC is receiving some funding from industry, Jeanne Lenzer investigates how it might have affected the organisation's decisions
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) includes the following disclaimer with its recommendations: ''CDC, our planners, and our content experts wish to disclose they have no financial interests or other relationships with the manufacturers of commercial products . . . CDC does not accept commercial support.'' 1
The CDC's image as an independent watchdog over the public health has given it enormous prestige, and its recommendations are occasionally enforced by law.
Despite the agency's disclaimer, the CDC does receive millions of dollars in industry gifts and funding, both directly and indirectly, and several recent CDC actions and recommendations have raised questions about the science it cites, the clinical guidelines it promotes, and the money it is taking.
Marcia Angell, former editor in chief of the New England Journal of Medicine, told The BMJ, ''The CDC has enormous credibility among physicians, in no small part because the agency is generally thought to be free of industry bias. Financial dealings with biopharmaceutical companies threaten that reputation.'' 2
Industry funding of the CDC has taken many doctors, even some who worked for CDC, by surprise. Philip Lederer, an infectious diseases fellow at Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, and a former CDC epidemic intelligence service officer, told The BMJ he was ''saddened'' to learn of industry funding.
The CDC's director, Tom Frieden, did not respond to a question about the disclaimer. He told The BMJ by email, ''Public-private partnerships allow CDC to do more, faster. The agency's core values of accountability, respect, and integrity guide the way CDC spends the funds entrusted to it. When possible conflicts of interests arise, we take a hard, '...
How Generation Z became obsessed with subtitles
Mon, 25 Jul 2022 19:42
If we had to pinpoint a word, it was probably ''squelch'' that gave it away. ''Splosh'' would have been perfectly adequate; ''wet footsteps'' could have sufficed. Even just ''moisture sound'' would have done. But squelch is perfect: so rich, so vivid, so onomatopoeic. ''Squelching wetly'' '' well that was possibly overkill.
Series four of Netflix's Stranger Things has given its predominantly young viewers a lot of things, from a new Californian setting to a long-overdue Kate Bush primer, yet when it comes to lasting cultural impact, it's an often overlooked aspect of TV that might end up as the show's greatest legacy: turning subtitle-writing into a creative art form.
If you ever stray onto social media, it's likely you've seen the memes. Screenshots from Stranger Things, frozen with a wonderfully descriptive sound-effect caption at the bottom of the screen. ''Eldritch thrumming,'' is one (eldritch being a synonym for ''supernatural''). ''Desiccated withering'' is another, plus ''wet writhing'' and ''sibilant trilling''.
In the spirit of popular ''no-context'' Twitter accounts (accounts devoted to the posting of random screenshots from films or TV shows), the images are often funniest without explanation '' or, in the case of Stranger Things, simply pointing out that each one would make a fine band name.
The novelist Jonathan Coe probably expressed it best. ''Whoever writes the Stranger Things subtitles is definitely a frustrated poet,'' he tweeted. A frustrated poet, or at least somebody slowly working through the thesaurus entry for ''moist'' and thoroughly enjoying it.
Plenty is written about the death of reading among Generation Z, but those critics clearly aren't taking into account the millions of words they consume every year while watching TV and films. A 2021 survey by the captioning charity Stagetext found that in the 18-25 age group, four out of five use subtitles all or part of the time, despite having fewer hearing problems than older generations. By contrast, less than a quarter of those aged between 56 and 75 said they watch with captions on.
Explanations for this sudden surge in read-watching among young people are many and varied. Ranging from US audiences increasingly watching British shows with impenetrable-to-their-ears regional accents, such as Peaky Blinders or Derry Girls, to the frequent complaint that modern dramatic actors '' who aim for realism over perfect diction but land squarely at ''incoherent murmuring'' '' are just too mumbly for even perfect ears to follow without assistance.
Another reason is slightly more depressing, at least for filmmakers. ''The main reason they do it,'' one Gen Z-er said, briefly looking up from his phone and computer when I accosted him about the matter, ''is so they can flick their eyes up and read ahead, then take in the whole scene quickly, and look back down at their phone, or whatever second screen they have. It's kind of stupid, but everyone does it.''
By that token, subtitles and closed captions '' technically, the former is intended for people who cannot understand the language being spoken, the latter for people who cannot hear the audio '' are treated by Gen Z as a kind of televisual Huel. In other words, why waste time enjoying the full meal as a chef intended, when you could just chug the key components in a fraction of the time and get back to whatever else you're doing? (''It's called efficiency, grandad '' look it up.'')
One result of this shift is a boom in foreign-language series. Netflix's most popular show to date, Squid Game, is South Korean, and many of its other most successful creations '' from Spanish crime drama Money Heist and the Colombian series Narcos (which mixed Spanish and English), to French productions Call My Agent! and Lupin '' are enjoyed by audiences who can't comprehend a word being said (thus dissolving what Bong Joon-Ho, the South Korean director of Parasite, once called ''the one-inch-tall barrier of subtitles'', which historically put off English-speaking audiences from foreign productions).
But Netflix, which does nothing if not constantly monitor its dwindling membership's whims, has also revolutionised its captioning on English-language shows with a so-called English Timed Text Style Guide for its in-house productions. According to its director of globalisation, Kathy Rokni, adverbs are encouraged ''where appropriate''. ''Describe sounds, music, and even silence. It's important if it adds to the emotion,'' she explained recently.
The growth in demand means that a key but long-undervalued industry, language service providers (or LSPs), which provide subtitles, captions and dubbing, are now struggling to cope. Conversely, diplomatic translation services are finding their translators are being lured towards TV, creating a shortage of linguists where previously there had been an over-supply.
We are in a new era of captioning, an art form that began with silent film's intertitles, morphed into manual transcription by court stenographers and then embraced artificial intelligence, often with hilarious results (as satirised in a memorable scene in the series W1A when ''President Tramp promises a big day on Notional Security saying he will build a well along the border with Max Sicko'').
The new, improved captions offer more nuance, more creativity, and more chance you'll be able to scroll Instagram at the same time as watching something. On Netflix, 80 per cent of subscribers regularly watch with subtitles or closed captions.
On Stranger Things, in which ''tentacles undulate moistly'' and synthesisers are anthropomorphised more than a penguin in a Pixar film, the brain behind the adverbs is a man named ''Jeff T''. Now a hero of sorts to young fans of the show, he joined in its third season. He revealed: ''My best friend is hard of hearing in one ear, and he came up to me and he was like, 'This is one of the first times, if [not] the only time, I've just felt fully immersed in a show without having to turn the volume all the way up.'''
T '' who chooses not to give his second name '' has been writing captions for 15 years, and says he is influenced by authors from the ''New Weird'' literary movement of the 1990s and early 2000s, such as China Mi(C)ville and Jeff VanderMeer. ''I love authors who use evocative words and language to do their world-building, so I will freely admit that whenever I'm reading and see a word that's great, I steal it to put in my word bank,'' he told a journalist.
He is not unaware of his online fame. In the case of ''tentacles undulating moistly'', he conceded he was ''trolling a little bit with that''. But second-screening Gen Zers '' or the hearing impaired, for whom the better captioning is really designed '' won't mind at all, of course. It all adds to the viewing experience.
And, mercifully, T knows where the tender, oscillating, dewy line is. ''People brought up the squelching, but that palpable pressing sound is meant to evoke disgust and horror,'' he explained. ''If I was doing a Regency-era picture or a stoner comedy, I would change my language and shift accordingly.''
We will not be skim-reading about Bridgerton's Lady Whistledown squelching wetly any time soon, then. Possibly for the best.
Billionaires Try to Shrink World's Population, Report Says - WSJ
Mon, 25 Jul 2022 11:45
Last week's meeting of the Great and the Good (or the Richest and Richer) was bound to draw criticism.
Associated Press
The New York meeting of billionaires Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, David Rockefeller, Eli Broad, George Soros, Ted Turner, Oprah, Michael Bloomberg and others was described by the Chronicle of Philanthropy as an informal gathering...
Last week's meeting of the Great and the Good (or the Richest and Richer) was bound to draw criticism.
Associated Press
The New York meeting of billionaires Bill Gates, Warren Buffett, David Rockefeller, Eli Broad, George Soros, Ted Turner, Oprah, Michael Bloomberg and others was described by the Chronicle of Philanthropy as an informal gathering aimed at encouraging philanthropy. Just a few billionaires getting together for drinks and dinner and a friendly chat about how to promote charitable giving.
There was no agenda, we were told. And no plan for a follow-up meeting.
But in an age of fallen wealth idols, it was inevitable that a meeting of billionaire minds would draw scrutiny. Surely all that money and power in one room had to spell trouble for the rest of us.
An article in the Times of London, headlined "Billionaire Club in Bid to Curb World Population," said the issues discussed in the top-secret meeting included health care, education and--by far the most controversial--slowing the global population growth.
"Taking their cue from Gates they agreed that overpopulation was a priority," the article said, adding that "this could result in a challenge to some Third World politicians who believe contraception and female education weaken traditional values."
Such a stand wouldn't be surprising. Mssrs. Gates, Buffett and Turner have been quietly worrying about Malthusian population problems for years. Mr. Gates in February outlined a plan to try to cap the world's population at 8.3 billion people, rather than the projected 9.3 billion at which the population is expected to peak.
But some right-leaning blogs have started attacking the billionaires as forming a kind of secret sterilization society or giant ATM to fund abortions. It fed into time-honored fears of the rich using their wealth to reshape mankind in its preferred image. Some are raising the specter of eugenics.
I am not taking a stand on population control. But from what I was personally told about the meeting--and what the Times spells out further down in its story--population control was just one of many items raised during the meeting, as each philanthropist talked about what they were working on. It wasn't the reason for meeting and there are no real plans for a follow-up confab.
The notion that this secret gathering was aimed mostly at shrinking the world's population just doesn't ring true.
That said, almost all of the attendees are politically liberal. Do you think this Star Chamber of Philanthropists is something to worry about or something to be grateful for?
WHO Admits Everyone Who Gets Monkeypox Vaccine Part of 'Clinical Trial' to Collect Data
Mon, 25 Jul 2022 04:09
A top World Health Organization (WHO) official conceded that everyone who gets a monkeypox vaccine is essentially part of a ''clinical trial'' to collect information on whether the shot is effective.
The comments came as the agency's Director-General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, overruled a WHO advisory panel and declared monkeypox a global health emergency, which is the agency's highest level alert. The last time the WHO issued such an emergency was in early 2020 when it made the same declaration for COVID-19.
Tim Nguyen, the head of the WHO's infectious hazards preparedness agency, said the monkeypox vaccine's efficacy isn't known because it hasn't been used on a large scale before.
''I would like to underline one thing that is very important to WHO. We do have uncertainty around the effectiveness of these vaccines because they haven't been used in this context and in this scale before,'' Nguyen said Saturday.
Nguyen then said that ''when these vaccines are being delivered, that they are delivered in the context of clinical trial studies and prospectively collecting this data to increase our understanding of the effectiveness of these vaccines.''
CasesSo far this year, there have been more than 16,000 cases of monkeypox in more than 75 countries, and five deaths in Africa. The viral disease has been spreading chiefly in homosexual men in the recent outbreak outside Africa where it is endemic.
World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus in Geneva, Switzerland, on July 3, 2020. (Fabrice Coffrini/Pool via Reuters)In declaring the emergency, Tedros noted that ''for the moment this is an outbreak that is concentrated among'' homosexuals and ''especially those with multiple sexual partners.'' Before 2022, the virus was primarily relegated to western and central Africa, where the disease is endemic.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Food and Drug Administration has licensed two vaccines for monkeypox: ACAM2000, known as Imvamune or Imvanex, and JYNNEOS.
Many of the U.S. monkeypox cases are located in New York City, according to officials. The city's health agency said that it obtained more JYNNEOS vaccines.
''The NY Health Department announced plans for its next allocation of the JYNNEOS vaccine,'' the New York City Health Department said in a statement on July 21. ''Approximately 26,000 additional doses were delivered to New York City as part of Phase 2b from the federal government and state, and will be distributed via clinics, mass vaccination sites and community-based referrals. Individuals will be able to book appointments for July 24 through August 13.''
Europe, meanwhile, is the epicenter of the monkeypox epidemic, officials have said. Tedros said Saturday that ''WHO's assessment is that the risk of monkeypox is moderate globally and in all regions, except in the European region where we assess the risk as high.''
But last week, the CDC confirmed its first cases in children in two separate states. It's not clear how the children contracted the virus.
Jack Phillips is a breaking news reporter at The Epoch Times based in New York.
Elon Musk's Friendship With Sergey Brin Ruptured by Alleged Affair - WSJ
Mon, 25 Jul 2022 04:02
Tesla chief's liaison with Google co-founder's wife led to couple's divorce filing
Updated July 24, 2022 5:17 pm ETElon Musk engaged in a brief affair last fall with the wife of Sergey Brin, prompting the Google co-founder to file for divorce earlier this year and ending the tech billionaires' long friendship, according to people familiar with the matter.
Their falling out is one of a string of personal issues Mr. Musk has faced even as he juggles business challenges, including manufacturing disruptions at Tesla Inc. and a court fight over his desire to withdraw his $44 billion bid for Twitter Inc.
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Elon Musk engaged in a brief affair last fall with the wife of Sergey Brin, prompting the Google co-founder to file for divorce earlier this year and ending the tech billionaires' long friendship, according to people familiar with the matter.
Their falling out is one of a string of personal issues Mr. Musk has faced even as he juggles business challenges, including manufacturing disruptions at Tesla Inc. and a court fight over his desire to withdraw his $44 billion bid for Twitter Inc.
Mr. Musk is the richest person in the world, with an estimated fortune of $240 billion, and Mr. Brin ranks eighth world-wide, with $95 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
Messrs. Brin and Musk, among the nation's most famous entrepreneurs, were longtime friends. Mr. Musk has said that for years he regularly crashed at Mr. Brin's house in Silicon Valley.
Mr. Brin provided Mr. Musk with about $500,000 for Tesla during the 2008 financial crisis, when the company was struggling to increase production. In 2015, Mr. Musk gave Mr. Brin one of Tesla's first all-electric sport-utility vehicles.
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In recent months, there has been growing tension between the two men and their teams, according to the people familiar with the matter. Mr. Brin has ordered his financial advisers to sell his personal investments in Mr. Musk's companies, some of those people said. It couldn't be learned how large those investments are, or whether there have been any sales.
Mr. Brin filed for divorce from Nicole Shanahan in January of this year, citing ''irreconcilable differences,'' according to records filed in Santa Clara County Superior Court. The divorce filing was made several weeks after Mr. Brin learned of the brief affair, those people said.
At the time of the alleged liaison in early December, Mr. Brin and his wife were separated but still living together, according to a person close to Ms. Shanahan. In the divorce filing, Mr. Brin cited Dec. 15, 2021, as the date of the couple's separation.
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A lawyer for Mr. Brin declined to comment. Mr. Musk didn't respond to a request for comment. A spokeswoman for Ms. Shanahan, who runs a foundation focused on reproductive justice, also didn't respond to requests for comment.
In an interview early this month with the news website Puck, Ms. Shanahan said of the divorce filing: ''I hope for Sergey and I to move forward with dignity, honesty and harmony for the sake of our child. And we are both working towards that.''
Over the past two months, Mr. Musk's personal life has drawn considerable attention. He has been accused of exposing himself to a flight attendant at his aerospace company, SpaceX, which he has denied; the publication Business Insider reported he had two children late last year with a female executive at another company he co-founded, Neuralink; and one of his 10 children has publicly disavowed him.
Earlier this month, Mr. Musk sought to back out of an agreement to buy Twitter, saying the company hasn't provided the necessary information to assess the prevalence of fake or spam accounts. Twitter said it has ''bent over backwards'' to provide the information. It has sued Mr. Musk to force him to honor the deal, and a Delaware court has agreed to an expedited trial in October.
Mr. Brin and Ms. Shanahan, his wife of nearly four years, met at the yoga retreat Wanderlust about seven years ago, according to a person familiar with their relationship. Both had been married previously: Mr. Brin to
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Anne Wojcicki, co-founder of genetics company 23andMe Inc., and Ms. Shanahan to a finance executive. Mr. Brin has two children with Ms. Wojcicki.
Mr. Brin and Ms. Shanahan already were facing problems in their marriage in the fall of 2021, primarily because of Covid pandemic shutdowns and the care of their 3-year-old daughter, according to people familiar with their relationship.
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The liaison with Mr. Musk took place in early December 2021, at the Art Basel event in Miami, those people said. Art Basel is a multiday, annual festival that draws wealthy attendees from around the world.
At a party earlier this year, Mr. Musk dropped to one knee in front of Mr. Brin and apologized profusely for the transgression, begging for forgiveness, according to people with knowledge of the incident.
Mr. Brin acknowledged the apology, but still isn't speaking regularly to Mr. Musk, those people said.
The alleged liaison happened after Mr. Musk had broken up with his on-again, off-again girlfriend, the singer Grimes, in September. Mr. Musk and Grimes, whose real name is Claire Boucher, had a second child, a daughter, via surrogate in December 2021. Mr. Musk's twins with Shivon Zilis, the executive at Neuralink, also were born last fall.
Mr. Brin and Ms. Shanahan are now involved in divorce mediation, with Ms. Shanahan seeking more than $1 billion, according to people familiar with the negotiations.
The two sides have yet to come to an agreement, with Mr. Brin's side claiming that Ms. Shanahan is asking for much more than her prenuptial agreement entitles her to, the people said. Ms. Shanahan's side is arguing that her request is only a fraction of Mr. Brin's $95 billion fortune, and that she signed the prenuptial agreement under duress, while pregnant, the people said.
Mr. Brin co-founded Google, now a unit of Alphabet Inc., along with Larry Page in 1998, and helped build it into one of the world's most valuable companies. He and Mr. Page stepped down from management of Alphabet in 2019, but both remain on the board.
Since then, he has been heavily involved in fitness pursuits, at one point trying to learn many different Olympic sports, according to people who know him. He runs a $4.4 billion family foundation that has supported such causes as education and Parkinson's research, and he is affiliated with an airship startup called LTA Research and Exploration. He is currently writing a physics textbook.
'--Jim Oberman, Rebecca Elliott and Tim Higgins contributed to this article.
Write to Kirsten Grind at kirsten.grind@wsj.com and Emily Glazer at emily.glazer@wsj.com
VIDEO - Pentagon readies backup plans for Nancy Pelosi's Taiwan trip as China rages
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:51
The US military has begun developing contingency plans for any incident that may occur if House Speaker Nancy Pelosi follows through with her reported plan to travel to Taiwan next month '-- after President Biden said last week they believed it would be better for her to stay home.
The Associated Press, citing multiple US officials, reported that if Pelosi (D-Calif.) travels to Taiwan, the Pentagon will step up its movement of forces and other assets in the Indo-Pacific region.
Fighter jets, ships, surveillance assets and other military systems would likely be used to create buffer zones securing Pelosi's flight to the island nation. Security on the ground would also be bolstered to prevent any incidents while the speaker is in the country.
The officials also told the AP that if Pelosi follows through with the trip, the US would need to provide rescue capabilities '' such as helicopters posted on nearby ships and ready for departure at a moment's notice.
The Pentagon has begun planning for security measures if House Speaker Nancy Pelosi follows through on her plans to visit Taiwan. APWhile senior US officials typically receive additional security when traveling to foreign nations, a Pelosi trip to Taiwan would make her the highest-ranking elected official to visit since then-House Speaker Newt Gingrich in 1997.
Pentagon spokesman Martin Meiners declined to comment on the reported plans, telling The Post, ''It wouldn't be appropriate to comment on any congressional travel possibilities.''
While Pelosi has yet to formally announce a trip to Taiwan, Gen. Mark Milley '' chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff '' said Wednesday that if she ''or anyone else is going to travel and they asked for military support, we will do what is necessary to ensure a safe conduct of their visit.''
Meanwhile, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin avoided commenting Wednesday, but did inform reporters that he spoke to the speaker to give her his ''assessment of the security situation.''
Amid rising tension between China and Taiwan over Taiwan's independence, China has warned the US that Pelosi's trip to Taiwan would setback Washington-Beijing relations. APLast Wednesday, President Biden indicated that the Pentagon had concerns over the reported trip saying, ''the military thinks it's not a good idea right now.''
The Financial Times first reported last week that the speaker was planning to lead a delegation to Taiwan next month, citing six people familiar with the plans.
The report immediately sparked backlash from Chinese officials, who warned it would deal a setback to relations between Washington and Beijing.
''The US Congress is part of the US government and supposed to strictly adhere to the US's one-China policy,'' Foreign Ministry spokesman Zhao Lijan told at the time.
Despite the potential dangers of the trip, several Republican politicians have urged Pelosi to move forward with her travel plans as to not back down against China. AP''If Speaker Pelosi visits Taiwan, it would seriously violate the one-China principle '... It will have a severe negative impact on the political foundation of the China-US relations, and send a gravely wrong signal to 'Taiwan independence' separatists forces.''
Beijing ramped up its warnings over the weekend, even threatening a potential military response.
''If the US side is bent on going its own way, China will take strong measures to resolutely respond and counteract,'' Zhao said, adding: ''The United States should be held responsible for any serious consequences.''
Zhao reiterated the message Wednesday, saying a Pelosi visit would ''surely be met with forceful responses.''
There is growing concern that Beijing would attack Taiwan, which China believes is their territory, if Pelosi visited the island. APWhile US officials have expressed doubt that China would take direct action against Pelosi if she visited Taiwan, there have been growing concerns Beijing would launch military action against the island '' which China has long claimed is a part of its territory.
This week, air raid sirens blared in the capital of Taipei as Taiwan's military staged defense exercises.
For decades, the US has maintained a policy of strategic ambiguity towards Taiwan '-- acknowledging Beijing's claim to the island but not endorsing it.
As Pelosi weighs the pros and cons of a potential trip, several top Republicans have encouraged her to move forward with the reported plans.
''If she doesn't go now, she's handling China a '-- sort of a victory of sorts,'' Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said during a news conference Tuesday.
''Speaker Pelosi should go to Taiwan and President Biden should make it abundantly clear to Chairman Xi [Jinping] that there's not a damn thing the Chinese Communist Party can do about it,'' Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.) said in a statement Monday. ''No more feebleness and self-deterrence. This is very simple: Taiwan is an ally and the Speaker of the House of Representatives should meet with the Taiwanese men and women who stare down the threat of Communist China.''
VIDEO - (21) Samantha Power on Twitter: "My reaction from the Horn of Africa on Putin's grotesque attack on the port of Odessa https://t.co/u55eMKglKU" / Twitter
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:34
Samantha Power : My reaction from the Horn of Africa on Putin's grotesque attack on the port of Odessa https://t.co/u55eMKglKU
Sat Jul 23 14:40:18 +0000 2022
VIDEO - Identity and Democracy Group Conference - POST-VAC FLIGHT RISKS '' Are you safe on board a plane
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:11
Current language: en - English
VIDEO - WHO: Those Taking the Monkeypox ðŸ'‰ will be Part of a Clinical Trial - ''Uncertainty of Effectiveness"
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:09
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VIDEO - (23) TF Metals Report on Twitter: "This crazy old bag is utterly useless. https://t.co/E4TrBYBbOS" / Twitter
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:05
TF Metals Report : This crazy old bag is utterly useless. https://t.co/E4TrBYBbOS
Tue Jul 26 03:55:56 +0000 2022
VIDEO - (1430) Tory Leadership Debate CUT OFF after Host COLLAPSES - YouTube
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:03
VIDEO - Senator Ron Johnson Ask For Health Agency Whistleblowers To Step Forward
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 16:00
1 rumble
"Whistleblowers at our federal health agencies, please come forward. Restore integrity & credibility to your agency. Our COVID response was a miserable failure largely because health agencies were not transparent. This lack of transparency must end. Americans deserve the truth."
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VIDEO - (28) Suzanne Seddon on Twitter: "Robert Downey Jr being rolled out to promote the bugs ðŸ'ðŸ https://t.co/dPVKlySMBy" / Twitter
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 15:58
Suzanne Seddon : Robert Downey Jr being rolled out to promote the bugs ðŸ'ðŸ https://t.co/dPVKlySMBy
Tue Jul 26 14:33:03 +0000 2022
VIDEO - SUPERCUT: Mainstream Media Talking Heads Think the Jan. 6 Hearings Are a Television Series and They Can't Wait for Season Two - AIR.TV
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 15:52
Jul 25, 2022
SUPERCUT: Mainstream Media Talking Heads Think the Jan. 6 Hearings Are a Television Series and They Can't Wait for Season Two
VIDEO - (1430) EU nations agree to ration gas as Russia cuts supply further - YouTube
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 15:46
VIDEO - (21) Natalie Argyle on Twitter: "@CDCDirector Walensky hesitantly tells truth about who's contracting/spreading #monkeypox when addressing 2 confirmed US child cases'--''Both of those children um are traced back to, uh, individuals who come fro
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 15:18
Natalie Argyle : @CDCDirector Walensky hesitantly tells truth about who's contracting/spreading #monkeypox when addressing 2 confirm'... https://t.co/11iMsQWGWo
Mon Jul 25 19:11:47 +0000 2022
Şahsıma m¼nhasır : @NatalieArgyle @CDCDirector Vaxxed or not ?
Thu Jul 28 15:08:13 +0000 2022
Just Jonesy : @NatalieArgyle @CDCDirector A ninth grader with an interest in infectious diseases could have done a better job tha'... https://t.co/cZz8S6kSZn
Thu Jul 28 15:00:14 +0000 2022
Lafreed : @NatalieArgyle @CDCDirector Why does this reporter not question this.
Thu Jul 28 14:32:21 +0000 2022
Successful Businessman ðŸšðŸ‡ºðŸ‡...🚠: @NatalieArgyle @CDCDirector The "men who have sex with men" community. A lot of words when she could have just said gay guys.
Thu Jul 28 13:46:08 +0000 2022
Rasool Naseer : @NatalieArgyle @CDCDirector https://t.co/ZjjfoCS5pF
Thu Jul 28 12:41:46 +0000 2022
August : @NatalieArgyle @CDCDirector Whether she intended it or not, she is being misleading. They had assumed house-hold co'... https://t.co/YPdGZ3nlZ0
Thu Jul 28 10:07:21 +0000 2022
Joe Manico : @NatalieArgyle @NEWS_MAKER @CDCDirector Masks?
Thu Jul 28 09:51:55 +0000 2022
VIDEO - (21) Michael Knowles on Twitter: "All three other people on screen attack @nedryun'--and two of them call him a "bigot"'--for citing statistics about the spread of monkeypox. ðŸ¤ðŸŒŽ https://t.co/aiJGZfnE5D" / Twitter
Thu, 28 Jul 2022 15:16
Michael Knowles : All three other people on screen attack @nedryun'--and two of them call him a "bigot"'--for citing statistics about the'... https://t.co/ryQ0nqvhtd
Wed Jul 27 16:22:11 +0000 2022
Jefe, the one in Tejas : @michaeljknowles @nedryun Facts are bigots, bc they don't care about your feelings.
Thu Jul 28 15:10:32 +0000 2022


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Audio Clips

MillenialMinute-bill joel minte.mp3
Microsoft Ignite 2021_introduction_with visual aid-KAMALA VIRTUE SIGNAL.mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Mona Abdi - elon musk affair (27sec).mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Mona Abdi - recession white house disagrees (35sec).mp3
EU nations agree to ration gas as Russia cuts supply further.mp3
karine abdul jean pierre--gas 39.99 or less.mp3
Yellin on definition of a recession.mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Andrew Dymburt - wal-marts warning about profits (1min9sec).mp3
Colbert with Robert Downey Jr shilling insect products.mp3
Samanthat Powers from the Horn of Africa on Putin’s grotesque attack on the port of Odessa.mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Andrew Dymburt - large fireball over illinois (8sec).mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Andrew Dymburt - pastor robbed of $400k in jewelry (21sec).mp3
Qantas cancellations due to sickness.mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Andrew Dymburt - chess robot goes rogue (24sec).mp3
COVID Faucis latest 3.mp3
COVID Faucis latest.mp3
diversity supercut tc.mp3
Griner and blinkem NPR.mp3
Griner arrest hilarity.mp3
hindu vs muslim one npr.mp3
hindu vs muslim two npr.mp3
insane inflation talk 2 PBS.mp3
insane inflation talk CBS.mp3
ISO estmar.mp3
ISO help them.mp3
ISO thanks.mp3
Meta buying out rejected.mp3
Pink Diamond npr.mp3
Steerilization suckers NBC.mp3
TOCK Teacher in preschoolers.mp3
TOCK Teacher PS 2.mp3
UKRAINE Holly williams CBS.mp3
Biden vaccination super cut.mp3
COVID Faucis latest 2.mp3
Ned Ryun Fox Bews - don't attend gay orgies - with kennedy et al.mp3
Tim Nguyen WHO High Impact Events Predaredness Unit HEad - Monkey Pox vaccines are acutally a clinical trial.mp3
CDC Director Wallensky - men who have sex with men community passed to children.mp3
Commerce Sec Raimondo WEF - PUTIN - We need Chips for the Military.mp3
Sen. Kelly on CHIPS+ Act - We'll get it to the president.mp3
Bloomberg - Pelosi Taiwan trip [chips act].mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Andrew Dymburt - telsa fatal motorcycle crash (15sec).mp3
Jan6 Season Finale SuperCut.mp3
malcom_nance_white skin is like camoflauge at j6.mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Andrew Dymburt - kushner cancer diagnosis (22sec).mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Mona Abdi - russia leaving ISS (18sec).mp3
EU MEP Christine Anderson -2. What have they done.mp3
EU MEP Christine Anderson -3. aviation insurance will bail out.mp3
nap for humanity.mp3
Senator Ron Johnson Ask For Health Agency Whistleblowers To Step Forward.mp3
Tory Leadership Debate CUT OFF after Host COLLAPSES.mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Mona Abdi - napping causes strokes (14sec).mp3
EU MEP Christine Anderson -1. biggest crime ever committed on humanity.mp3
ABC ATM - anchor Mona Abdi - teva $4B opioid settlement (22sec).mp3
Indiana Shooting Good Samaritan [super cut] (59sec).mp3
  • 0:00
    We're not but I'm trying to present Ashkenazi Jews.
  • 0:03
    Adam curry Jhansi Devora.
  • 0:06
    Thursday, July 28 2022. This is your award winning nation media
  • 0:10
    assassination episode 1472.
  • 0:12
    This is no agenda
  • 0:15
    battling ba five, broadcasting live from the heart of the Texas
  • 0:19
    hill country here in FEMA Region number 60. In the morning,
  • 0:22
    everybody. I'm Adam curry,
  • 0:24
    from Northern Silicon Valley where we're battling a
  • 0:28
    recession. Hello, I'm John C. Dvorak scale.
  • 0:36
    I don't know, which is worse. The recession or ba five?
  • 0:42
    Well, I get a kick out of this recession, because the numbers
  • 0:44
    just came in this morning recession quarters two or two
  • 0:50
    quarters in a row of negative GDP growth. And then, which has
  • 0:55
    always been a recession, but somehow for some reason they
  • 0:58
    change the definition. I have Democrats changed the definition
  • 1:02
    of women. And now they've changed the definition of
  • 1:04
    recession. Hold
  • 1:05
    on. It's not just Democrats. No, no, no, no. How about our
  • 1:08
    Secretary of the Treasury, Janet Yellen,
  • 1:12
    a common definition of recession is two negative quarters of GDP
  • 1:17
    growth, at least, that's something that's been true. In
  • 1:20
    past recessions, when we've seen that there has usually been a
  • 1:24
    recession, and many economists expect second quarter GDP to be
  • 1:31
    negative first quarter GDP was negative. So we could see that
  • 1:36
    happen in that will be closely watched. But I do want to
  • 1:40
    emphasize what a recession really means is a broad base
  • 1:44
    contraction in the economy. And even if that number is negative,
  • 1:49
    we're not in a recession now. And I would you know, one that
  • 1:55
    we should be not not characterizing that as a reason
  • 2:00
  • 2:00
    say that, but you're splitting hairs. I mean, if the technical
  • 2:02
    definition is two quarters of contraction, you're saying
  • 2:05
    that's not a recession. That's not
  • 2:07
    to take no, that's not the technical definition.
  • 2:12
    Like the technical definition is that's not it. That's not the
  • 2:15
  • 2:15
    shit with the technical the technical definition is two
  • 2:19
    quarters in a row. She She She says that's not
  • 2:23
    that she screwed it up the White House. Of course, this is where
  • 2:25
    this is all coming from because it's bad juju.
  • 2:28
    Today, the Commerce Department releases its much anticipated
  • 2:31
    report revealing whether America's economy is in a
  • 2:34
    recession, depending who you ask, the report could show
  • 2:38
    America's gross domestic product in the negative for a second
  • 2:41
    consecutive quarter. Some economists say that's
  • 2:44
    technically a recession. But the White House disagrees,
  • 2:47
    highlighting areas of strength, including job growth,
  • 2:51
    the way that we see is that we are not currently in a recession
  • 2:54
    or a pre recession. It comes
  • 2:57
    after the Federal Reserve raised interest rates by three quarters
  • 3:00
    of a percentage point yesterday, the fourth rate hike this year.
  • 3:04
    I love it when they use pre. We're not in a pre recession
  • 3:08
    either. Okay, where did that term show up? Because we're
  • 3:12
    always in a pre recession. Unless Yeah, yes, yeah. Thank
  • 3:16
    you. I'm pre dead.
  • 3:21
    Let's listen to these two to two different clips about the same
  • 3:24
    thing on CBS and PBS, CBS PBS. This is insane inflation talk on
  • 3:30
  • 3:32
    We're not trying to have a recession. And we don't think we
  • 3:34
    have to. We think that there's a path for us to be able to bring
  • 3:38
    inflation down while sustaining a strong labor market.
  • 3:41
    The Federal Reserve's move follows consumer prices shooting
  • 3:44
    up more than 9% in June compared to last year KPMG chief
  • 3:48
    economist Diane Swonk How does making things more expensive?
  • 3:53
    bring prices down?
  • 3:54
    While that is exactly unfortunately how you bring
  • 3:56
    prices down is by increasing the cost of doing business. When
  • 4:00
  • 4:01
    that mean I can stop paying
  • 4:04
    $12 for a loaf of bread
  • 4:08
    so that this piece goes on about how
  • 4:11
    is a regular loaf of bread $12 Right now
  • 4:14
    this woman was bitching and moaning
  • 4:16
    I was gonna say I miss that I mean it's a little different.
  • 4:20
  • 4:23
    so it goes on starts with Powell and you jacked up to interest
  • 4:27
    seven and a half which is going to jack up this and Jakob that
  • 4:30
    Jakob does and then which is power says that will lower price
  • 4:36
  • 4:38
    that's the best part.
  • 4:40
    Then the guy asked does other experts she comes on and y'all
  • 4:44
    yeah that's how you do it. Please so so this is the PBS
  • 4:48
    version of this
  • 4:48
    find administration officials are praising Senate passage of
  • 4:52
    legislation designed to increase US production of semiconductor
  • 4:56
    chips is WD ETS Quinn Kleinfelder rope orchard has
  • 5:00
    been a shortage of the chips since the pandemic began.
  • 5:02
    The chips are a vital part of everything from military weapons
  • 5:05
    to video games. They've been in high demand during the pandemic,
  • 5:08
    but most are produced in China and other countries outside the
  • 5:13
    US. The Senate wants to change that by providing more than $50
  • 5:16
    billion plus tax credits to convince us companies to
  • 5:20
    increase domestic chip production. Following an event
  • 5:23
    in Detroit, US labor secretary Marty Walsh said the move could
  • 5:26
    also aid the nation's economy,
  • 5:27
    it won't necessarily address the issue of inflation tomorrow, but
  • 5:31
    it is about down the road that we're less dependent on foreign
  • 5:35
  • 5:35
    the US House must still approve the measure before it goes to
  • 5:38
    President Biden for his signature.
  • 5:40
    Now hold on a second, because there's two things at play here.
  • 5:43
    I've done some research into the chips,
  • 5:45
    at which I want to hear that research. But first, I want to
  • 5:48
    stick with the inflation thing. Yeah,
  • 5:50
    that's exactly what I wanted to do mansion. So I read this bill
  • 5:54
    to the inflation Reduction Act of 2022. Which is mind boggling
  • 6:00
    because you spend $400 billion, which I guess we'll have to
  • 6:05
    print to stop inflation. And notice how mentioned got COVID.
  • 6:11
    And all of a sudden he's like, oh, yeah, let's do it. This is
  • 6:14
    they've split up the build back better bill into three different
  • 6:17
    parts, the chip chips plus act as part of that. This plus
  • 6:21
    thing, but this thing. I mean, this is it's like almost $400
  • 6:25
    billion, that he all of a sudden he's like, this is like the
  • 6:28
    Boris Johnson thing he got COVID came out in the man was
  • 6:31
    compliant, mentioned goes in
  • 6:34
    about debt is getting on my nerves. Yeah. I also want to ask
  • 6:39
    an obvious question. The reason we sent all of our fabs over to
  • 6:45
    China in the first place was for what reason to save money. So
  • 6:50
    we're going to bring the fabs back over here, and that somehow
  • 6:53
    is going to help inflation, or is it going to just jack up the
  • 6:56
    prices and make inflation worse, these people have no common
  • 7:00
    sense will also
  • 7:01
    if you look at now, again, this is the chips plus x there were
  • 7:06
    actually got into a lot of stuff by researching this particular
  • 7:09
    act started off as the chips act in February, it had a hole it
  • 7:14
    had hundreds of billions of climate change bullshit in
  • 7:18
    there. Which is why of course it never went anywhere. Then that
  • 7:24
    that bantered around, then the chips act got put into the
  • 7:27
    National Defense Authorization Act, except it wasn't funded.
  • 7:33
    And so this is the funding of that would be cut notice the
  • 7:35
    name of the bill is chips Plus, there's still hundreds of
  • 7:39
    billions of climate change crap in there. It's unbelievable. All
  • 7:43
    kinds of science research, nuclear of the fusion fission is
  • 7:50
    bullshit. As not, it's yeah 55,000,000,004 of which any
  • 7:55
    company that takes it must have at least 5% of their workforce,
  • 7:59
    the United States. So you can buy a 5%. So you can be any any
  • 8:04
    kind of company 5% Exactly. Number one. So this thing has
  • 8:09
    gone through this. Now we have to go into the house to pass
  • 8:13
    this. And I think that this is what this obvious SIOP about
  • 8:18
    Nancy Pelosi going to Taiwan is all about because these chips,
  • 8:22
    this money will predominantly go not just to overseas chip
  • 8:26
    manufacturers, but this is a military industrial complex
  • 8:30
    bill. And it's it has shit written all over it. This is not
  • 8:34
    for your iPhone. This is for military crap. Which is, which
  • 8:39
    is Yeah, as I'm revisiting the NDAA, like, you know, $830
  • 8:44
    billion, do you think if we followed the money, we'd find
  • 8:47
    out who's really fucking the world, and it's just the
  • 8:50
    military industrial complex? Do you think if we really looked at
  • 8:55
    it, we have no idea what's going on inside that machine. And yet
  • 8:59
    $830 billion
  • 9:02
    for what and when, where's the audit?
  • 9:04
    And we had to give an extra 50 billion to Ukraine when we
  • 9:08
    started, we can't take it out of our budget. Listen, here's
  • 9:10
    Bloomberg on this so called Pelosi trip. And I think I think
  • 9:14
    the two are related here. I don't know why necessarily. They
  • 9:18
    feel they have to create this, this marketing campaign. I would
  • 9:22
    think that maybe in the house that have the votes, but maybe
  • 9:24
    they don't because of all the climate change crap that's in
  • 9:27
  • 9:27
    This would obviously add more to the tension between China and
  • 9:30
    the United States. And we're not sure though the White House or
  • 9:35
    the United States officials have not confirmed whether Nancy
  • 9:38
    Pelosi Of course, the house speaker's visit to Asia will
  • 9:41
    include a highly sensitive stop in Taiwan. Nancy Pelosi has
  • 9:45
    mentioned that it is necessary to show support for Taiwan. That
  • 9:50
    doesn't necessarily mean she will make a stop there. But it
  • 9:54
    is rumored that she would do so and the Ministry of Foreign
  • 9:58
    Affairs in Beijing was asked about that possibility. And the
  • 10:03
    rather hawkish spokesperson at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs
  • 10:06
    in Beijing, Tao Li Tian. He said that China is getting seriously
  • 10:10
    prepared for that possibility. Now, he didn't necessarily say
  • 10:15
    what would happen. What retaliation if you will from
  • 10:19
    Beijing would happen. But he did say that the United States must
  • 10:22
    assume full responsibility for any severe consequences. And
  • 10:27
    when he was also asked about whether his positioning or
  • 10:31
    Beijing's positioning on a possible visit by Nancy Pelosi
  • 10:34
    is his wording is stronger than in the past. He said that we'll
  • 10:38
    be right to assume so. So there is speculation, of course that
  • 10:44
    she will she will show up at some point in early August. But
  • 10:48
    it's a guessing game right now, it would be the highest level
  • 10:52
    visit by a US delegation led by a house speaker in some 25 years
  • 10:58
    at a time, of course, when military trade and other
  • 11:01
    relations between China and the United States are fraught, to
  • 11:04
    say the least.
  • 11:05
    So I've two more clips for this particular topic. Now that I
  • 11:09
    think about it, maybe since Lloyd Austin has to come out and
  • 11:13
    speak Oh, yeah, we're prepared for everything Grinch, China, I
  • 11:16
    think the military industrial complex is is egging this on.
  • 11:20
    They want. They want some kind of move by China. And it would
  • 11:25
    be even better if we gave our chips plus money to Taiwan would
  • 11:28
    not be funny. Maybe we'd get some spark something up. This
  • 11:32
    even came up at the World Economic Forum on the panel that
  • 11:36
    was America's future in the global economy or some crap like
  • 11:41
    that. Here's the Commerce Secretary Raimondo.
  • 11:43
    We were prepared, as he said to you earlier, the United States
  • 11:46
    was prepared to go it alone if we had to. But this is
  • 11:50
    about Ukraine, which of course, comes right back to the war
  • 11:53
    machine and the chips we
  • 11:54
    had to, but we didn't have to because all of Europe, Taiwan,
  • 11:58
    much of Asia came along with us. The final thing I'll say on this
  • 12:02
    topic of kind of what have we learned and what's changed. War
  • 12:07
    is no longer just about tanks and military equipment. Ground
  • 12:11
    Zero is technology, technology, the United States is hobbling
  • 12:16
    Putin's ability to conduct war by denying technology
  • 12:22
    semiconductors, you want to talk about, you know, having an
  • 12:26
    ability to have a military operation. It revolves around
  • 12:29
    semiconductors, artificial intelligence, quantum computing,
  • 12:33
    which means it's time for the US to invest in that and lead in