Thursday, July 22, 2021

When bacteria kill us, it’s more accident than assassination

BEHOLD, MY SHOCKED FACE:  China Rejects Proposed WHO Probe Into COVID-19 Origins.

Why do some wealthy people leave money on the table by not buying private hospital insurance?

One in three high-income earners choose not to take out private hospital insurance, even though they could save money by avoiding the Medicare Levy Surcharge. A reason behind this decision is that these individuals are happy to use public hospitals. This suggests that people may be unaware that they are being financially penalised on their... 

Was Jeffrey Epstein a Spy?

No Time To Die: Daniel Craig Speaks On His Final Outing as Bond

Partygoers celebrate England’s ‘Freedom Day’ amid warnings of a nasty hangover

  • Via Sylvia Hui and Guy Faulconbridge

Kids are using acidic drinks like cola and orange juice to fake positive Covid antigen tests – here's how it works.

To assess the risk of Covid for you & your family, Dr. Katherine J. Wu recommends "checking virus conditions like you check the weather" before you go out into the world and do things.

       In the Sydney Morning Herald David Free writes on Judge a literary prize ? No thanks, they're all a giant waste of time
       He finds:
They pose as trusty gauges of literary merit, but they’re thoroughly random and subjective. You get a sudden appreciation of that when a stranger rings you up one day and asks you to judge one yourself.
       He also suggests:
Not that I advocate the abolition of all literary awards. But if I had the funds to establish my own prize, I’d introduce some major tweaks. For instance, I’d lose the judging panel. I’d have one judge only – a different person each year, chosen strictly on the strength of his or her literary expertise.
       This is actually not unheard of: German author-prizes such as the Kleist-Preis and the Erich Fried Preis work this way. 

Survey Center on American Life: “Coming out of a once-in-a-generation global pandemic, Americans appear more attuned than ever to the importance of friendship. However, despite renewed interest in the topic of friendship in popular culture and the news media, signs suggest that the role of friends in American social life is experiencing a pronounced decline. The May 2021 American Perspectives Survey finds that Americans report having fewer close friendships than they once did, talking to their friends less often, and relying less on their friends for personal support.  The COVID-19 pandemic is the most obvious culprit in the national friendship decline, but broader structural forces may be playing a more important role.

Histomap: Visualizing the 4,000 Year History of Global Power

Virtual Capitalist: “Today’s infographic, created all the way back in 1931 by a man named John B. Sparks, maps the ebb and flow of global power going all the way back to 2,000 B.C. on one coherent timeline.  Histomap, published by Rand McNally in 1931, is an ambitious attempt at fitting a mountain of historical information onto a five-foot-long poster. Although the distribution of power is not quantitively defined on the x-axis, it does provide a rare example of looking at historic civilizations in relative terms. While the Roman Empire takes up a lot of real estate during its Golden Age, for example, we still get a decent look at what was happening in other parts of the world during that period. The visualization is also effective at showing the ascent and decline of various states, nations, and empires…”

See also The David Rumsey Historical Map Collection “focuses on 16th through 21st century maps of North and and South America, as well as maps of the World, Asia, Africa, Europe, and Oceania. The collection includes atlases, globes, school geographies, maritime charts, and a variety of separate maps including pocket, wall, children’s and manuscript maps. The online selection is an expanding cross section of images designed to highlight the depth and breadth of the collection. The digital images and associated descriptive data are copyright Cartography Associates. The physical map collection is housed at the David Rumsey Map Center at Stanford University.”

Bats’ brains predict their next move during flightMIT Technology Review


Jodie Turner-Smith Lost Family Jewelry in Cannes Hotel Room Theft Variety

Future Fears American Scholar

Unexamined Life The Baffler

When bacteria kill us, it’s more accident than assassination Aeon Essays 

DNA Has Four Bases. Some Viruses Swap in a Fifth. Quanta Magazine 

Can Doctors Save their Jobs and the World Dr. David Healy 

America’s Collapsing Meritocracy Is a Recipe for Revolt Foreign Policy


The Endless Pursuit of Better Hedgehog Review

Ill With Want The Convivial Society


Ohio Pizzeria Workers Get $78 An Hour In Surprise Profit Sharing Patch. That’s called “surplus value.”


What If the State Department of Transportation Tore Down Texas Highways Texas Observer