/Links 9/5/2020

Links 9/5/2020

Dear patient readers,

Please recall that our comments major domo Jules is on holiday today and tomorrow, and so yours truly will be moderating comments. But yours truly seldom faces the day before mid-PM, so please cut us some slack if your contribution gets snagged by our moderation tripwires.

Cosmic signal rattles Earth after 7 billion years BBC (Chuck L)

These students figured out their tests were graded by AI — and the easy way to cheat The Verge (David L)

Unique study of man who sees ‘melting’ faces sheds light on the brain’s visual system PsyPost

Scientists develop new compound which kills both types of antibiotic resistant superbugs


The Afghan herbalist who claims to have a ‘cure’ for COVID-19 Al Jazeera. Resilc: “Will he make it to Fox News and the White House next?”

The Fractured World of Tennis Amid a Prolonged Pandemic New Yorker


Covid-19 Vaccine Developers Prepare Joint Pledge on Safety, Standards Wall Street Journal

PSU football doctor clarifies comments on percentage of COVID-positive athletes with myocarditis CenterDaily (resilc). 35% reduced to 15%. Still a bad number for young men presumably at peak health.

Note very small sample size:



11 freshmen at Northeastern were dismissed for violating COVID-19 rules. Their $35,000 tuition won’t be reimbursed. Business Insider (Kevin W)

How an intimate wedding in rural Maine led to the state’s largest COVID-19 outbreak Boston Globe (David L)

South Dakota goes ahead with state fair even after Sturgis rally fueled COVID-19 surge USA Today


The End of Oil Is Near Sierra Club

The commuters are revolting UnHerd (resilc)

The Post-COVID ‘Great Reset’ Won’t Be Fueled By Renewables OilPrice (resilc)


Mulan opens in Thailand amid calls for boycott Thai Enquirer (furzy)

FCC Estimates It’ll Cost $1.8 Billion To Remove Huawei, ZTE Equipment From US Networks CNET

A UN Tax Convention – then a U-turn Tax Justice Network (Dan K)

Cum-Ex: Der Bankier und seine Freunde in der Politik Zeit Online. I can’t access the piece using Google Translate but my German-reading contacts tell me this is serious: “Scholz in big trouble it seems to me.”


Back to school Chris Grey (guurst)

Old Blighty

Extinction Rebellion blockade Murdoch’s newspaper print sites Guardian

Coronavirus: Civil servants ‘must get back to offices quickly’ BBC (Kevin W)

New Cold War

RUSSIAGATE: NYT, FB & FBI Say Anti-Trump Site, Now Shutdown, Was Russian Effort to Help Trump Win ConsortiumNews (UserFriendly)

Senate‘s Trump-Russia Report Shows What Mueller Missed Intercept. Help me. I must confess not to have read the whole report, but I did read the entire part about Trump’s visit and dalliance in 1996. First, he was then married to Wife #2, Marla Maples, with whom he had a rock solid and not very generous prenup. Second, more generally, Trump has long had a thing for swimsuit models and partying, so the idea that he’d had a fling overseas wouldn’t give anyone leverage over him, even before getting to what America and the rest of the world has come to recognize as part of his brand: shamelessness. Third, and it was in the report, Trump dragged a woman with him to all his 1996 meetings in Moscow, and she clearly was at best arm candy, which the locals saw as bizarre. In other words, he was not just not hiding that he was carrying on with Russian “models,” he was broadcasting it. And fourth…this was 1996. Maples and Trump separated in May 1997 and had divorced by 1999. What miniscule “kompromat” value there was ended when their marriage was over. And as for Manafort, he was Trump’s campaign manager for all of four months, the last six to eight weeks of which Manafort was getting the Jeff Sessions treatment. The idea that Manafort had meaningful influence over Trump is questionable.

Beirut Burning AltaMar (Paul R)

Trump Transition

Trump tweets can have explosive impacts on corporate brand images, study finds PsyPost

Trump administration reportedly orders military newspaper Stars and Stripes to shut down The Week (Dr. Kevin). But then: Trump says he won’t cut funding for Stars and Stripes The Hill


How unpopular is Donald Trump? FiveThirtyEight (resilce)

Furor grows over Trump’s reported remarks on war dead The Hill

Biden passionately rebukes Trump, says his son Beau ‘wasn’t a sucker’ for serving in Iraq The Week

Reporters blasted for ‘shamefully embarrassing’ softball questions at rare Biden press conference Fox. Kevin W: “I know that it is Fox, but still…”

A third of Republicans believe QAnon theory of deep state paedophile cannibals is ‘mostly true’, poll finds Independent

More People With Felony Convictions Can Vote, but Roadblocks Remain Pew (UserFriendly)

One Family Has Delivered the Mail by Boat for 115 Years. Is This the Last? New York Times (David L)

Black Injustice Tipping Point

Roaming Charges: Sometimes They Choke Counterpunch (Heresy101)

America Divided

John Pierce, The Lawyer Raising Money for Kenosha Shooter Kyle Rittenhouse, Was Sued For Unpaid Debts Daily Beast (resilc)

Our Famously Free Press

Facebook’s Political Ad Ban Also Threatens Ability to Spread Accurate Information on How to Vote ProPublica

Facebook, The PR Firm Ranjan Roy and Can Duruk

SoftBank’s Bet on Tech Giants Fueled Powerful Market Rally Wall Street Journal. Charming.

Bill Barr Comes For Google Heisenberg Report

Pentagon Says It Will Stick With Microsoft For $10 Billion JEDI Cloud Contract CNBC

Amazon Deletes 20,000 Reviews After Evidence of Profits for Posts Financial Times. Only 20,000? Who are they kidding?

Robinhood Facing Multiple SEC Investigations Into Its Business Practices Forbes


CalPERS may force next CIO to unload personal holdings LA Times (Kevin W)

Retiree group calls on CalPERS board president to resign Sacramento Bee. From one insider:

You saw Tim Behrens of CSR on the attack with Marcie Frost. Today the State Worker publishes lengthy exerpts from the RPEA letter and makes Henry’s response look petty. When you’ve lost the Bee…

Guillotine Watch

You can now experience Burning Man while surrounded by all the comforts of home—just like rich people used to do on the Playa, pre-Covid. Wired

Class Warfare

Higher-class individuals are worse at reading emotions and assuming the perspectives of others, study finds PsyPost

Workers Keeping Americans Fed Are Going Hungry in the Heartland Bloomberg (BC)

I Study Corporate Welfare. Even I Was Shocked by This Cronyism. New York Times (resilc)

Robot Chicken Butchers, Brought to You by COVID-19 Pew (UserFriendly)

Stocks Are Up. Wages Are Down. What Does it Mean? – Economics from the Top Down

Antidote du jour. Tracie H: “A Monarch butterfly on a Lantana flower, seen during a stroll with my husband along the waterfront of Alamitos Bay in Long Beach, California.”

And a bonus from guurst:

And a second from Kevin W:

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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