Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
May 26, 2022

Open Thread (NOT Ukraine) 2022-73

News & views not related to Ukraine ...

Posted by b on May 26, 2022 at 12:48 UTC | Permalink

« previous page

Aleph_Null, your wisdom is very much appreciated. Thanks for sharing.

Every week this site is subjected to reams of the past days' assiduously 'curated', cherry picked nonsense which attempts to buttress the clueless one's entirely subjective and self-serving take on our world, those gullible enough will continue their unquestioning acceptance, others able to push past sophomoric twaddle, and think for themselves, will not.
Posted by: Debsisdead | May 23 2022 9:27 utc | (from the-moa-week-in-review-not-ukraine-ot-2022-70)

That homelessness originates from drugs and "mental illness". You and all the landlords, conveniently on the same side of the fence. This is what "rentier psychology" looks like. Do you get it now?
Oh. Somehow, I didn't expect you to. Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 27 2022 21:20 utc | 180

We can see the basic problem with rentier psychology is you can't distinguish it from Nazi [fascist eliminationist] psychology. Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 27 2022 21:55 utc |

I think these 3 posts are related.
But like bevin said @ May 27 2022 21:59 utc | 184, "Still nobody has to drink here. Nobody has to drink at all".

Posted by: waynorinorway | May 28 2022 7:21 utc | 201

Posted by: juliania | May 28 2022 1:48 utc | 194

Re MAster and Margarita
just began to read it and the epigraph on this one has a different translation:

FAUST: Who then art thou?

M EPHISTOPHELES: Part of that power which still

Produceth good, whilst ever scheming ill.

What an interesting statement of light and dark. (Translator is Pavaer)

Posted by: K | May 28 2022 7:28 utc | 202

I typed the entire thing (on my rented electric typewriter) misspelling that precious word [opthamologist] all the way through!
Posted by: juliania | May 28 2022 0:25 utc | 191

We were just starting out when we moved here, so I was looking for any kind of low-skill work I could scrape up. I answered a classified want-ad (remember classified want-ads? that one dates me!) for a secretary at the Polish Cultural Center in downtown San Francisco. I claimed to know how to type, and so my prospective boss handed me a mailing-list to retype. A mailing list full of Polish names, needless to say...

What with job-interview nervousness, and those consarn names sending my digits through unaccustomed combinations, I kept screwing up that list with too much whiteout, and starting over. Meanwhile, all these burly guys are loudly bouncing around -- like a construction union hall in there, lots of noise. After my third try, I look left and right; the door's just to my right; I grab my hat and slip out with no word to nobody.

And that's just one of the miserable jobs that got away from me. I was also a catastrophically unsuccessful dishwasher in a mafia restaurant. That job I actually worked for three days.

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 28 2022 8:32 utc | 203

I was also a catastrophically unsuccessful dishwasher in a mafia restaurant. That job I actually worked for three days.

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 28 2022 8:32 utc | 203

and now I'm reminded of Joe Pesci in Goodfellas.

Posted by: pretzelattack | May 28 2022 10:10 utc | 204

re Uvalde--so some cops stopped some other cops (Border Patrol) from going into the school while the shooter kept shooting kids. massive screwup.

Posted by: pretzelattack | May 28 2022 10:14 utc | 205

@Aleph_Null #180
Do you even live in San Francisco? It seems like you are more of a Berkeley liberal than someone who actually lives in the City.

What I have always found alternately irritating and laughable about people like you is that you have no solution other than outrage.

You want to start a Leveler revolution? Go to it then; proof is in the pudding.

Screaming outrage at everyone who disagrees with you or refuses to kowtow to your puny attempts at moral bullying accomplishes nothing.

In the lull before the (probably never going to happen) storm, refusal to recognize reality is pointless and stupid.

I have never said "Just Say No".

But it is equally asinine to think that all drug addicts and mentally ill would be just fine in a Communist or Socialist paradise. In case you haven't traveled - there are addicts in the most heavily socialized countries in Europe as well.

The real problem isn't people like me - the real problem is people you think are on your side but who really are just extracting rent from you and everyone else.

San Francisco spent 1.1 billion dollars on the homeless problem in 2021 alone. Think about that. If there are 10,000 homeless - that's $110,000 spent per homeless person in 1 year = $9,166 per month per homeless.
That's more than twice my very high rent.

Why is the problem continuing to get worse? It isn't a function of money - it is a function of either incompetence or greed, most likely both.

So piss off: I could give a crap about your internet rants because you clearly have no idea of what is really happening or why.

Posted by: c1ue | May 28 2022 10:54 utc | 206

Here’s an interesting “media studies” exercise: Google search “Russia zircon missile”

So La Presse has a neat summary on the Ontario elections, wisely asking the question if this is a preview of what’s to come in the provincial elections in Quebec. Compare the parties campaign promises, look at some pretty pictures…

Montreal’s population just grew by 400 as a plane of Ukrainians arrives.

“The Romanos are some of the Montrealers opening their homes to Ukrainians while they find their footing in Canada.

This weekend, the city will welcome around 400 Ukrainians, says the municipal councillor in charge of the file, Alia Hassan-Cournol. They will be arriving by charter plane on May 29.

"There's been a huge wave of solidarity coming from Montrealers that wanted to welcome Ukrainian migrants in their homes," Hassan-Cournol said.”

MK Bhadrakumar links to a piece from Canada’s Global News (which I thought was kinda cool so I’m posting it)

Speaking of Global News, the Twitter account for consumer+investigative reporter Sean O’Shea alternates between coverage of the Ford election campaign and war crimes in the Kharkiv oblast. (And a bit of the shooting in Buffalo, not far from here you know 45 kms from the border) A stimulating read!

Posted by: Bruised Northerner | May 28 2022 13:01 utc | 207

Oh yay !

Netflix has 3 new episodes, of the 3rd season of Zelensky's hit TV show "Servant of the People" !

And, even ... drum roll... a Servant of the People MOVIE !

"The President teams up with the former Prime Minister to stabilize the economy and stop the greedy oligarchs maneuvering from behind the curtain."

I hear it's based on a true story...

Posted by: Featherless | May 28 2022 13:09 utc | 208

In other news, Tony Accurso, former Quebec construction magnate, loses appeal and is heading to prison.

Posted by: Bruised Northerner | May 28 2022 13:31 utc | 209

Kazakhstan – just gave it into the search mask but didn't find much more than the january 2022 article in covert action or similar reports (Sorrows and NED spending 5 Mio in Kazakhstan etc.)

But what do we really know about this bloody incidents meanwhile?
How does Tokajew behave?

Questions to the bar. Thank you.

Posted by: njet | May 28 2022 13:31 utc | 210

Zelensky has a GREAT VOICE btw, at least for speaking, and it adds to his charm as an Actor. A little 5'5" guy with such a baritone voice, he makes Leonard Cohen sound like a soprano.

It reminds me of the those cartoons from the 1920's (?) where the little fish sang the baritone parts.

Has anyone heard Zelensky sing ? Can he sing worth a shit ? The "Sluga Narodu" song is pretty catchy, makes me wanna learn it, just for fun.

Posted by: Featherless | May 28 2022 13:52 utc | 211

re: helping the homeless in San Diego . . .at my pet charity
Vocational Training Gives People a Second Chance at Success

Father Joe’s Villages has been investing in vocational training programs and services benefiting people who are homeless for over 15 years. The goal of vocational training is to help people gain skills, qualify for good jobs and get a head start toward independence.
In 2002, Father Joe’s Villages introduced the Freddie Evarkiou Culinary Arts Program (CAP), designed to prepare individuals for work in the restaurant and hospitality industries through classes, mentorship and hands-on training. This program has been so successful that in 2017, 92 percent of our culinary arts graduates got jobs in local restaurants, earning more than the minimum wage.
Ralph, a 2017 CAP graduate, was recently promoted to a full-time prep cook. CAP not only made this result possible but also helped him in other aspects of life.
. . .Encouraged by CAP’s success, Father Joe’s Villages enhanced their job training program to target more industries needing well-trained, motivated and committed employees to fill vacancies. Their Skills Training Enhancement Programs (STEPs) started late last year.
What is STEPs?
STEPs is vocational training that provides practical on-the-job experience and skills certification that people need to qualify and apply for employment in industries such as: . . .here

Posted by: Don Bacon | May 28 2022 14:23 utc | 212

@ juliania | May 27 2022 23:18 utc | 188

thanks for your kindness juliania.. if i could send you some rain - i would.. it is overcast at present and it might rain more.. thanks for trying to help me understand why i didn't enjoy maguarita and the master... some books are not for everyone!

Posted by: james | May 28 2022 14:56 utc | 213

You are all incorrect about San Francisco I've lived there for over a decade. San Francisco and all west coast cities are the way they are because they have massive funding for the health and human services agency and homeless outreach programs. There is also no statewide or national database of these people so often times they have multiple caseworkers in multiple cities. Michael schellenberger outlines this in great detail on various YouTube videos and podcast interviews. There is essentially a massive industry and bureaucracy propped up to keep these people cycling through the system wasting our money. Homeless person in San Francisco can collect several thousand dollars a month in benefits and live in a weekly hotel that was formally occupied by merchants sailors walk two blocks away to steal things from tourists and three blocks away are their dealers. This is why you have a ludicrous amount of hopeless people living on the streets of San Francisco and Los Angeles. The new age of homeless people are the mobile home type who have jobs and just can't afford to live there those people are much fewer and more far between.

Posted by: Shivers | May 28 2022 15:25 utc | 214

ATTN: Fans of Scientific Racism, Order of Anachronists' Estimates in a Range

Italian Scientists Sequence First Human Genome From Remains of Vesuvius Volcano Eruption Victim

The results proved that the man was Italian and also showed the presence of DNA from the bacterium that causes tuberculosis.

Posted by: sln2002 | May 28 2022 15:37 utc | 215

Also, as a Russiophile, I would please ask Dr. Putin : please abolish the "bi" character.

Posted by: Featherless | May 28 2022 15:57 utc | 216

The Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs put together a timeline of crimes committed by the United States and Great Britain

It was linked in a Tweet about the Trail of Tears #NoStatuteOfLimitation (!)

Posted by: Bruised Northerner | May 28 2022 16:34 utc | 217

@ c1ue | May 28 2022 10:54 utc | 206

I'll answer your personal question as a courtesy, though I've said many times before I'm a proud resident of Richmond, on the opposite coast (contra costa) from SF. I first settled in Pacifica, a lovely cow-town reputed for fog, when actually the fog is up there from the perspective of Pacificans. Those were days of "Save Our Hills" as I recall -- from the developers, or something. (Pacifica remains absolutely lovely, imho.)

You sound like the type of person confined by ideas about types of people -- who cannot rest until you've compulsively pigeonholed each encounter into the proper category. What a weird hobby! Needless to say: I have very little to no interest in whatever impression someone like you has of me.

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 28 2022 17:45 utc | 218

I employed the term "Nazi [fascist eliminationist] psychology" to describe the virulent hatred spat at we human beings, by people who psychologically associate with rentier psychology. After posting, I was a slightly bothered that I might have gone a little overboard, equating landlords with Nazis. Then I see hate-speech such as this (from a thread near you):

Homeless person in San Francisco can collect several thousand dollars a month in benefits and live in a weekly hotel that was formally occupied by merchants sailors walk two blocks away to steal things from tourists and three blocks away are their dealers.

What solution do such rentiers propose for their betes-noires, the homeless, aside from recurrent incarceration until disposal? Just across the Bay from me is San Quentin State Prison, site of Covid policies tantamount to mass-execution, thanks to Governor Newsom's pillar: the CA prison-industial complex.

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 28 2022 18:09 utc | 219

"Did the Police Force miss the instruction day when how to kick a door in was taught?

Many Texass men have kicked doors in to simply beat their wives I’m sure.

It’s sad State."

Posted by: Duncan Idaho | May 28 2022 18:09 utc | 220

"Homeless person in San Francisco can collect several thousand dollars a month in benefits"

and then they all drive around in Reagan's welfare cadillacs? some bullshit never dies, it just gets old and dessicated like a cow patty.

Posted by: pretzelattack | May 28 2022 18:38 utc | 221

Law enforcement delayed entry until reinforcements brought a ballistic shield, because their soft body armor will not protect them from high powered rifle rounds. High powered rifle rounds travel over 2000 ft/s and will slice through soft body armor like butter. Soft body armor will protect one from shotgun rounds and pistol ammo up to .44 magnum.

I noticed in one of the videos the police had an armored vehicle to ride to the scene in.
If one of the doors was removed it could have been used as ballistic shield to protect officers from high powered rifle rounds. Law enforcement would not have to wait for other equipment and entry would not have been delayed.

A lot of military armored vehicles have been given to law enforcement so they can ride around on taxpayer dollars. If the ballistic armor was taken from these vehicles it could be used in school entrances and hallways as shields. Hinged on hall corridor walls with wheels to protect school resources officers and to allow them to be lifted off the hinges to be used as mobile ballistic shields.

This would save taxpayers money not having to pay for dedicated manufactured ballistic shields and make good use of these military armored vehicles.

Posted by: Joe | May 28 2022 18:44 utc | 222

Posted by: Joe | May 28 2022 18:44 utc | 222

not clear to me why they delayed entry, or stopped the Border Patrol from storming the classroom initially. Various excuses have been trotted out, like having to look for keys (whut?) or that they didn't know the guy was periodically shooting kids in the classroom, which sounds like bullshit.

Posted by: pretzelattack | May 28 2022 18:53 utc | 223

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 28 2022 18:09 utc | 219

San Francisco seemed an unbelievably beautiful place back when I first arrived as a teenager - might have been the best time to be there, though I'm sure there was crime, pollution, the ills endemic to a big city. (Back in Auckland, you never wanted to be passing a bar at the six o'clock closing hour; even so it was not unsafe, just yucky.) But I was not at all aware of any dangers up and down them thar SF hills for us young uns exploring parks and museums, and the locals were so friendly, all of them. It's a good memory to have. Hold onto those; it's the way it can be, even for have nots, especially then.

As a recent constant pedestrian here on the outskirts of Santa Fe and Albuquerque, I've rubbed shoulders with the homeless on buses and waiting for them, as well as sharing the streets, me with my trundler overloaded and even the moveable platform some buses have almost a bridge too far. Someone always helped - only once a chap so friendly all the way turned out to be insistent I give them a few dollars, but even he wasn't aggressive. I think things are worse now but this is a state of poor people, natives who've always been here. I'll give it a try again soon, as I miss it. It's a very sad condition for this country to be in to have to look out for the other guy not in a good way. I hope it doesn't continue this way.

One bad apple in a basket of friendlies. As here, online.

Posted by: juliania | May 28 2022 20:30 utc | 224

speaking of cops and the homeless, the Albuquerque cops have a brutal reputation. Several of them slaughtered a homeless guy who was guilty of camping in an unauthorized area.

Posted by: pretzelattack | May 28 2022 20:34 utc | 225

@Aleph_Null #218
You said

I'm a proud resident of Richmond, on the opposite coast (contra costa) from SF. I first settled in Pacifica, a lovely cow-town reputed for fog, when actually the fog is up there from the perspective of Pacificans.

So in other words, you are talking about things which you do not experience on a daily basis.

Glad we cleared that up.

This is not about "types of people", this is about direct personal experience.

I ride the public transit to the grocery store and about town, as well as to/from the airport. I furthermore live in the actual downtown area - not a glorified suburb like Noe Valley or Sunset. I shop at both Safeway and Foodsco, but never Whole Foods and I hand carry almost all my food home on my own shank's mare.

My views are based on first hand, personal experience - not a once a month visit to a concert or what not. I have furthermore literally been on every single street in San Francisco - I had a startup more than 13 years ago now in which I captured all of the parking restriction data on every single street in the entire city of SF, then did the same for Santa Monica, downtown LA, Washington DC and Boston.

As such, I have direct, personal experience with multiple large cities - including both bad parts and good.

People who don't live here, or who live here but do nothing but Uber around and order delivered food - have no idea what reality actually is.

Posted by: c1ue | May 28 2022 21:25 utc | 226

This morning I read the second chapter of TM&M, which is a complete contrast to the first with its spare, enigmatic hints of pending doom...Well, both chapters have that in different ways. james, do you enjoy Berlioz's "Symphonie Fantastique"? I have to admit I enjoyed it very much -- before I knew what it was called, what it was about. And I am no fan of Mexico's 'Day of the Dead' even though I know it is when families celebrate at the gravesites of their loved ones. Was it that sense of the macabre that you found distasteful? I would join you in that. However, if one perseveres one comes to the heart of the novel in the end, and to the experience of Margarita which goes beyond Dostoievski in suggesting how humans partake in divinity. Beyond but not alien to that 'master' since he himself is totally beholden to his wife and family as the ground on which his creativity, as he knows well, bears fruit. Family, as our parish priest liked to emphasize, is also at the heart of Biblical exegesis; and it takes a woman to bring that message home.

Posted by: juliania | May 28 2022 21:26 utc | 227

Posted by: pretzelattack | May 28 2022 20:34 utc | 225

I know of that incident, pretzelattack, and at the time it could have been my own son. You have left out some of the details, but yes, it was a brutal incident. There's a lot of brutality in TM&M also; it was written in a brutal time. Worse, perhaps, than the time after the Communist state's downfall, as far as individual security was concerned. And we might be facing such a time now, when such incidents are becoming commonplace. There are way too many guns out there. Bulgakov places the crucifixion of Christ on Bald Mountain, so a night on Bald Mountain is looming. It is not for the faint of heart. If matters don't change we shall be tried. Putin has warned us we are on the same path.

Posted by: juliania | May 28 2022 21:52 utc | 228

I also enjoyed Margarita and the Bear.

Posted by: Featherless | May 28 2022 21:54 utc | 229

re:SF - I left around 23 years ago. Last time I visited, around 6 months ago, it was still way more gentrified than back in my punk rock days of the early '80s. Richmond, on the other hand, was a place of urban blight I had only seen in Detroit or the gnarly parts of east/west Oakland. I always lived in the outer Sunset/Richmond. The Great Highway!
I love Pacifica, too. Heavy, cold waves and a magnificent fishing pier.
I grew unhappy with the 'yay, (slang for the Bay Area) and moved to LA.
c1ue knows what he is talking about if he went all over SF. Sunnyside, Visitation Valley and Hunter's Point were interesting places back then, to say the least. They made the Tenderloin seem quite welcoming.
But everyone's personal experiences form their opinions. I am much happier in SoCal.
Who cares what I have to say, though. (why am I posting this then...??)
Everyone has their own take on different locales.
I hope everyone is well at the bar!

Posted by: lex talionis | May 28 2022 22:08 utc | 230

I don't want to sound too gloomy -- there are many very funny bits -- and I'm sure Russians can pick up more of those, as with some of Lavrov's cryptic sayings. Language is featured more throughout than I had remembered, turns of phrase which probably don't translate well for us ignorant westerners. And for Russians of that era, starved for any but regulated, 'safe' literature, it must have seemed like manna from heaven. Which it was.

Posted by: juliania | May 28 2022 22:11 utc | 231

Posted by: c1ue | May 26 2022 13:57 utc | 8

Peak oil was in 2002. It all down hill. All easily accessed oil fields are falling in production.

Posted by: Bad Deal Motors On | May 28 2022 22:34 utc | 232

there are many very funny bits
@ juliania | May 28 2022 22:11 utc | 231

Out of synch with Lavrov's selection (I've got M&M on order), I wound up diving into Dead Souls. That's a kind of funny which feels relentlessly Russian to me. For pages and pages you're wondering what the heck Gogol thinks he's doing -- he keeps apologizing for writing so tediously, while unfolding every person, moment, and interaction as beyond perfectly ordinary. The funny in there becomes insidiously intense, sneaking up on you via the eventual shock of recognition: OMG, all these strange people are old friends of mine! Look, there's me!

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 28 2022 22:40 utc | 233

The New Mexico megafire was triggered by an escaped "pile burn" merging with an escaped "prescribed burn":

On April 9, smoke was reported from the vicinity of the Gallinas Canyon Wildland Urban Interface pile burn, which had concluded on January 29, and crews responded. Crews lined the 1.5-acre Calf Canyon Fire and continued to monitor the fire over the next couple of days to ensure there were no signs of heat or flames near the edge.

Ten days later, on April 19, the Calf Canyon Fire reignited and escaped containment lines. A wind event on April 22 caused significant fire spread, and the Calf Canyon Fire merged with the Hermits Peak Fire, which was caused by an escaped prescribed burn.

My brother told me the Bear Fire, which took his home and the whole Sierra foothills town of Berry Creek in 2020, was ignited by a prescribed burn.

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 28 2022 23:02 utc | 234

Before there can be any serious talk of "International Laws" or 'rules based order' the outstanding injustice of the international system must be addressed.

Posted by: bevin | May 26 2022 23:02 utc | 90

One can tackle issues in "logical order" or according to ability (preferably, "I will write about X because I know something about it").

An unsophisticated reader of your words (an such happen even here) may get an impression that ILs and RBWO are related. But to me, there is no obvious connection, and I remember times before RBWO was used, in that ancient era (previous millennium), the collective West pretended to enforce ILs if it bothered with such considerations at all.

To my perception, EU ceased to be a useful organization when the leaders of France, UK (still in EU) and Germany protested Trumpian withdrawal from JCPOA and "maximal sanctions" and engaged in the most energetic action that they were capable of: imploring Washington to let them trade with Iran. The answer was "nope", and that was it, in spite of some pretenses of doing something. In other words, self-admitted puppet. Why it was expedient to detach one of the fingers of this puppet to give it ostensible autonomy, is mysterious, but apparently it was useful in the internal politics of UK by emasculating Labour there, and few years later Labour was successfully converted to Twiddle Dum party, "vehemently opposed" to Twiddle Dee in power.

Right now, The Most Bright European Commission showed a microscopic flicker of independence by pursuing the embargo on Russian oil when USA did not advise to do so. This is normally typical for the French: instead of being a docile poodle, they behave like an energetic dog that at times runs in front of the master pulling the leash, and at times lags behind. After few weeks, this dog is in the lagging position, which is understandable: all those accelerations and decelerations lead to temporary exhaustion.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | May 28 2022 23:21 utc | 235

Juliana wrote: "..Back in Auckland, you never wanted to be passing a bar at the six o'clock closing hour;.."
Did everyone understand that? The bars closed at 6pm! In New Zealand.
And I thought that Aussie licensing laws were weird.

Posted by: bevin | May 29 2022 0:03 utc | 236

I heard on the news a wannabe failed long term serial liar one hit one term "El Prezidente".

A man of many shady deals under his belt since he reached the USSA military draft board age.

He bombastically proclaimed. If one was to fully arm all teachers with loaded weapons in plain view. In front of the children they teach. This would , by some miracle. Reduce or prevent the prevalent multiple daily "Going Postal" events at all USSA Schools. Going postal events 2022. 212 in 144 days and still increasing.

A public school teacher. In the USSA require multiple college degrees. A large debt to pay after graduation. The average rate of pay is basically rubbish. For the teacher, the school equipment supplied. Is both old and obsolete. In many cases the teacher needs to hand out text books , pens and paper. Many parents deem that is an extra unwanted expense. Extra out of pocket expenses on a well below average wage..

For the unfortunate teacher. On a daily basis. Forced to use obsolete easily hacked computers . Receive verbal abuse from the up themselves corrupt school board members(your wasting that federal grant money), headmaster(stop breaking the well worn past the use by obsolete equipment) Parents and self appointed censors(most classics novels "Kill the Mockingbird" are bad).

Now, what could possibly go wrong to an armed with a gun public school teacher? When running late for their third job to pay off the student debt loans. When buttonholed by a drunken ignorant angry whining about nothing child's parent. The very same child who destroyed supplied accessories. As their parent had spent all their money . Drinking at the local bar................

For Donny T. , oh I did not think about such scenarios were possible ........ Besides all school teachers are over paid any way...

Posted by: Bad Deal Motors On | May 29 2022 0:16 utc | 237

@ 237 - homeschool. f the system.

Posted by: lex talionis | May 29 2022 0:19 utc | 238

Below is a quote from a ZH posting

The largest wildfire in New Mexico history—which is still burning—was started by the U.S. Forest Service, federal investigators announced Friday.

The catastrophe began as two fires that merged into one. Both wildfires have now been conclusively traced to planned burns conducted by the Forest Service. Planned or "prescribed" burns are used to reduce the threat of extreme fires by reducing the amount of dry fuel in the forest.

So far, the New Mexico fire has destroyed 330 homes and scorched some 500 square miles. The cost of battling the blaze has surpassed $130 million, and rises another $5 million each day, according to the Associated Press.

Posted by: psychohistorian | May 29 2022 2:01 utc | 239

@ Aleph_Null | May 27 2022 2:52 utc | 123

The final saying on police neglect -- and a bit of all-surpassing sarcasm -- are the words of the poet:

"And the cops don't need you, and man they expect the same."

Posted by: Cabe | May 29 2022 2:20 utc | 240

"Albuquerque cops have a brutal reputation. Several of them slaughtered a homeless guy who was guilty of camping in an unauthorized area."

This is what happens to you when you engage in high risk activities, and in USA this includes sleeping. I recall several cases when people disturbing public order by sleeping were killed by police. Usually it is shooting, but sometimes police works pretty hard, like five cops who were beating David Silva in Fresno, California until he died. David Silva have fallen asleep in the vicinity of the local hospital after he was denied admission...

Without citing other cases, one can conclude clear and logical reason why SWAT team that came to the Uvalde school did not stop the shooting: the perpetrator was not asleep. Otherwise, it would be their time to shine...

Posted by: Piotr Berman | May 29 2022 2:54 utc | 241

Juliana wrote: "..Back in Auckland, you never wanted to be passing a bar at the six o'clock closing hour;.."
Did everyone understand that? The bars closed at 6pm! In New Zealand.
And I thought that Aussie licensing laws were weird.

Posted by: bevin | May 29 2022 0:03 utc | 236

Ha! I must admit that compared to bar closing time in a German city where I lived for a while, which was 4 am, 6 am closing time would not be strange: the staff has to have a short break to sleep, although 6 am seems stretching it. But 6 pm? Do they have "happy 5 minutes" in New Zealand bars, when you can enjoy what in Poland was called "express three hundreds": you order three 100 g classes of vodka ("hundred" (setka) refers to that standard serving size, 25 g is another option, "tiny" (maluch)) and drink one often another, and a glass of water to regain breath. So you still can have some good time as you drive home after ending work at 5 pm.

Posted by: Piotr Berman | May 29 2022 3:06 utc | 242

My Prime Minister has spoken:

"There’s a term that gets thrown around a lot – keyboard warrior. It’s used to refer to someone who makes aggressive or abusive posts online, often anonymously. I like the name. In my mind, when I read something especially horrific on my feed, I imagine it’s written by a lone person unacquainted with personal hygiene practices, dressed in a poorly fitted super hero costume – one that is baggy in all the wrong places."

Posted by: tucenz | May 29 2022 3:22 utc | 243

Posted by: bevin | May 29 2022 0:03 utc | 236

And I thought that Aussie licensing laws were weird.

The strangeness in Oz shop trading and licensing laws dated back to austerity laws introduced during WW1. Introduced but was never rescinded at wars end.

One oddity of the law was normal banking hours was heavily restricted. Saturday Bank trading was for three hours until noon..... At five minutes past, the foot an vehicle traffic all but disappeared. The locals headed towards the nearest football ground...........

Posted by: Bad Deal Motors On | May 29 2022 4:27 utc | 244

Posted by: K | May 28 2022 7:28 utc | 202

Your version is actually what mine also is, sorry to have perhaps confused the indented area at 194. The order of Mephistopheles' answer is simply reversed in my

'...who are you, then?'

'I am part of that power which eternally
wills evil and eternally works good.'

My translator is also Pevear, and perhaps your version doesn't have his footnotes?

Here is the footnote in mine:

"The epigraph comes from the scene 'Faust's Study' in the first part of the drama Faust by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe (1749-1842). The question is asked by Faust; the answer comes from the demon Mephistopheles.

The version you have:

FAUST: Who then art thou?

MEPHISTOPHELES: Part of that power which still

Produceth good, whilst ever scheming ill.

It's interesting that the verbal response is crafted differently - while the question dangles, without immediate reference to who the speakers might be in the version I have (though the note clarifies). There's certainly a difference in emphasis - I think I prefer my version as more enigmatic, in keeping with the tone of the novel.


My very battered paperback is a Penguin edition, 1997. The novel was originally first published in serial form in the publication Moskva in Russia in 1966, 26 years after Bulgakov's death.

Posted by: juliania | May 29 2022 5:32 utc | 245

Yet another reminder that you cannot trust tech companies in any way, shape or form:

Twitter pays $150 million fine for using 2 factor login info to target ads

You need an email to have a twitter account, but the phone number is wholly optional - for 2 factor authentication/security purposes. And Twitter used that to target ads.

Posted by: c1ue | May 29 2022 11:57 utc | 246

I've written about this before: Jacobin has more detailed info beyond the Intuit example

Mass Arbitration biting its corporate sponsors in the butt

Last year, Uber turned a quarterly profit for the first time ever. But a major obstacle stands in the way of the rideshare company repeating that achievement: a $92 million bill owed to the American Arbitration Association over claims that Uber discriminated against businesses when it said it was waiving Uber Eats charges to certain black-owned restaurants after the police killing of George Floyd.

Uber has been trying to sue its way out of paying the tab — but a recent New York appeals court decision blocked their request for an injunction to stop the arbitration association from collecting the bill.


it turns out that companies that mandate arbitration often don’t like the taste of their own medicine.

Faced with this financial onslaught, some companies have chosen to settle the claims filed against them, to the tune of huge sums of cash. Keller Postman claims that it has secured more than $200 million for its mass arbitration clients.

What's even funnier is that I just overhead a conversation between 2 East Indian guys talking on SF public transportation. I would guess they work for Lyft because the line I was on is nowhere near Uber but passes right by Lyft SF HQ, but this convo could apply to any of the "sharing" companies like Airbnb, etc. One guy was explaining to the other guy that there were hundreds of lawyers across the country fighting local governments over the right to conduct their business.

Posted by: c1ue | May 29 2022 12:02 utc | 247

More fun in the sun: no part of your car is safe

Phoenix catalytic converter thefts soar, man arrested with 1200

An Arizona man was facing multiple theft charges Friday after detectives found more than 1,200 catalytic converters packed into a storage unit, a case that highlights a national surge in thefts of the pricy auto parts that play a critical role in reducing vehicle emissions.


Replacing one can cost a motorist from $1,000 to $3,000, according to the National Insurance Crime Bureau, an insurance industry group that works to combat insurance fraud and crime. Police say thieves can get from $100 to $150 for each converter.

The insurance group counted just 3,969 reports of stolen catalytic converters in 2019, more than 17,000 in 2020 and more than 52,000 last year.

Amusingly, this probably only affects regular people. Back when I still had cars - both my 8 series Audis had really thick liners covering up the entire lower side of the car.

Posted by: c1ue | May 29 2022 12:05 utc | 248

Amusingly, this probably only affects regular people. Back when I still had cars - both my 8 series Audis had really thick liners covering up the entire lower side of the car.

Posted by: c1ue | May 29 2022 12:05 utc | 248

I think there is a word "normie" that saves the effort to type "regular people". I use my garage for some junk and my bicycle, nobody tried to steal the catalytic converter. Bike part plus labor may add up, but reaching 1000 would take some effort. A converter contains 3 to 7 (seven?) grams of precious metals. Palladium is perhaps at least half, and it used to be at least twice cheaper than gold, but no more, ca. 70 dollars per gram. Platinum is a steal at 30-35 dollars per gram (especially if you steal it together with palladium?).

Recycling converter is a profitable business, but like other parts, converters should have some stamps allowing to trace the origin, but with dishonest shops may disregard that. If a huge batch of converters were in storage, finding a dishonest recycler may require time and effort...

Posted by: Piotr Berman | May 29 2022 12:47 utc | 249

A most lively conversation.

A quick check of Oil prices both spot prices and contract prices . Spot Oil prices is approximately 10% of the contracted supply is sold on the open market. Contract is a negotiated fixed price per barrel valid for 12 months. This allows governments and oil suppliers to establish a twelve month advanced managed budget. Akin to governments issue annual budget papers based on income and country government operational expenses.

Fun fact : USSA imports 56% of oil consumed from Canada. Both sweet and sour. Sour requires one additional refining step. The by product is a valuable component in the chemical industry.

The bulk of the oil shipped south to the USSA . Is on a twelve month fixed price contract....

USSA has a large number of pumped cross country petroleum pipelines . The size varies dependent on fossil fuel pumped. Some carry petrol, aviation fuels and so forth.

In February this year a 40" crude oil pipeline(Capline) runs from Illinois to the Gulf carrying Canadian crude. Which requires a similar style of type of refining as is used by Venezuela heavy............

Fossil fuels are refined using "cracker Tech" . The fuels are graded 1 through 7. 6-7 or 'dregs' is normally used in oceanic cargo vessels and cruise liners. First fuel off the stack and cheapest and lowest temperature is transport 'Diesel fuel' . A quick check of pricing shows this product is priced higher than ordinary motoring fuels, Ethanol has not change pricing in the past 12 months. In some cases the contract price has declined . The producers spent grains/waste water is sold as animal feed.

Thus the sucker bait USSA motorist is being completely ripped of and price gouged to hilt by the evil reformed big sisters. This in turn is reflected in their profit sheets for 2022............ So if the paid shills and gasbag talking heads blame "Sleepy Joe" for this issue . They are being paid by 'Big Oil" to tell nothing but lies bigger than those as told by one 'Donald Trump'..

Truth is stranger than fiction............Or, it pays to be skeptical of all information as supplied . By the corrupt paid to lie USSA corporate and private media shills. One should ask "Who benefits?"

Posted by: Bad Deal Motors On | May 29 2022 13:20 utc | 250

@sean the leprechaun from Ukraine thread

You said:

after having bank accounts frozen over political ideology based on fake science.....please explain what real money is, and who owns it. All the money I have has the Queen's seal so she really is kind to allow me to use 'her' money to keep myself housed and fed.

Real money is the legal tender of where you live. If you live in England, it is the GBP. There's no getting around that.

The problem you're having isn't the existence of the legal tender or the "ownership" of it - it is the access to it. Your money in your bank account hasn't disappeared, it has simply been rendered inaccessible.

There are multiple ways around it, but they all require preparation and significant extra effort.

The most common, legal way is a business. Open a business, then open a business bank account. If your credit is really bad, ask a friend to open the business. The friend needs to be a really, really good and reliable one because the friend has full legal access and ownership to the business and thus anything in it (your cash).

The business can also get credit cards. The credit card is issued to the friend, but the friend can issue another one to you as an "employee".

So use the biz bank account to handle incoming payments; keep a significant amount of cash around as reserve; pay the credit card via the business bank account.

Need I say the friend has to trust you as well, since the "business" can affect their credit negatively?

Don't pee in the well you drink at.

The above has extra costs to start with - setting up the biz, etc. I don't know about the UK, but in the US - once a biz bank account or credit card is opened, the bank never checks again to see if the biz still exists, is still licensed, actually is still operating etc.

Posted by: c1ue | May 29 2022 13:36 utc | 251

@Piotr Berman #249
Not clear if the AZ man was going to melt them down, or was operating an Ebay biz/selling to local repair shops.
If melting, maybe he was waiting for a truck load to drive down to Mexico.

And to be fair, 52000 over the entire US isn't THAT much - but a jump from 4000 to 52000 in 2 years is a big change. And 2022 may well see 6 digits of stolen converters.

Posted by: c1ue | May 29 2022 13:39 utc | 252

@Bad Deal Motors On #250
You said

Fun fact : USSA imports 56% of oil consumed from Canada.

Please post the link where you got this from.

The US imports 3.6 mbd (million barrels per day) from Canada but officially consumes 18.67 mbd. And while the US does export significant petroleum product - I guarantee it is not 10+ mbd worth.

Secondly, I do know that the US generally imports oil from Western Canada but exports oil to Eastern Canada.

This Canadian government report says

In 2018, Canadians consumed 46 billion litres of gasoline.


The vast majority of this process occurs in Canada and by Canadian companies; however, in 2018, imports of oil represented 46% of Canada’s refinery inputs, and imports of refined gasoline amounted to 7.9 billion litres.

Which implies a lot of oil going into Canada (presumably from the US) as well as gasoline: 7.9/46 = 17% of gasoline consumed by Canada is imported, also presumably from the US.

EIA says 460K barrels/day exported to Canada from the US, so Canada is net exporting 3.1-ish mbd to the US - which is only 16.8% of US oil consumption.

Nowhere does any of this information jibe with your above statement, hence my question.

Posted by: c1ue | May 29 2022 13:50 utc | 253

Straight to the point, from Margaret Kimberley:

Even cynical politicians eventually pay attention when babies’ lives are at risk, but this problem is not unique. Higher education should be free or at the very least inexpensive as it was before neoliberalism turned the country into a failed state. Health care should also be free but the one promise Biden has kept is to make sure that doesn’t happen. The very term “medical debt” is an abomination yet it is the reason for most personal bankruptcies. It seems that baby formula is the canary in the failed state coal mine.

Posted by: Aleph_Null | May 29 2022 14:05 utc | 254

And to be fair, 52000 over the entire US isn't THAT much - but a jump from 4000 to 52000 in 2 years is a big change. And 2022 may well see 6 digits of stolen converters.

Posted by: c1ue | May 29 2022 13:39 utc | 252

More than 4000 such thefts in the Denver-Boulder area since the start of 2021. Either that's anomalous or the national statistics are fraudulent. I'm guessing the latter.

Posted by: malenkov | May 29 2022 14:50 utc | 255

@malenkov #255
The data source was an insurance consortium, so is very possibly not complete.

Posted by: c1ue | May 29 2022 20:03 utc | 256

« previous page

The comments to this entry are closed.