Via Naked Capitalism

Why rare beetles are being smuggled to Japan at an alarming rate National Geographic

Hungry fungi chomp on radiation Nature. Paging Paul Stamets.

The only way to hit net zero by 2050 is to stop flying FT. One more reason to end mass tourism.

Lindblad Becomes “First Self-Disinfecting Cruise Fleet” Maritime Executive

The limits of high speed rail Mapping Ignorance

U.S., allies should consider Nokia, Ericsson investments to counter Huawei: Barr Reuters. Financially, this is possible. However, though Nokia and Ericsson are not Chinese company, they rely at least in part on China for, er, the means of production.


“It’s Hard to Break Free from a Union” (DJG):

The skies darken for France’s Sun King, Emmanuel Macron FT

Spain’s govt sets timing of talks with Catalonia leaders AP


Netanyahu Sold U.S. on Moving Israeli Arabs to Future Palestinian State, Sources Say Haaretz


Coronavirus: the cost of China’s public health cover-up FT

Video shows interior of new Wuhan ‘hospital’ resembles prison Taiwan News. One might ask why the CCP has the capability to rapidly construct prison camps…

AI robots busy in China’s fight against novel coronavirus Xinhua. Makes for a cheerful confinement, I suppose…

Thoughts on a pandemic (thread):

Effectiveness of airport screening at detecting travellers infected with novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) separator commenting unavailable Eurosurveillance

No Handshakes at Global Wireless Conference as Virus Spreads Bloomberg. Social distancing. Go long gloves.

Frustration grows in China as face masks compromise facial recognition Quartz

Li Wenliang: Death of Wuhan doctor sparks outpouring of anger BBC

The racist art of naming a virus Salon

Tamil-language anthem dropped from Sri Lanka independence party Agence France Presse


Delhi Elections: What Have Political Parties Promised to Mitigate Air Pollution? The Wire (J-LS).

The Daily Fix: By refusing to let women be commanders, armed forces are out of step with real India (J-LS).

Shock after alcohol flows from kitchen taps in Kerala BBC

Brazil judge rejects hacking accusation against Greenwald AP

Right-wing Nicaraguan opposition boasts of support from US and EU in campaign to oust Sandinista gov The Grayzone


Trump Transition

DHS bans New Yorkers from Global Entry and other programs over state law allowing undocumented immigrants to get driver’s licenses CNN

Senate report faults Obama administration’s paralysis on Russian election interference Politico. A riddle wrapped in an enigma…

House votes to do away with massive USPS financial burden Federal Times. Could be sane. Unless enough damage has been done that privatization can be put “on the table.” Readers?


The House Impeachment: A Postmortem Lawfare. “From the moment that activists made an unprecedented effort to lobby the presidential electors to overturn the results of the general election and embraced conspiracy theories about Russia ‘stealing’ the election, any subsequent impeachment efforts would have been heavily discounted by Republicans.” And not just Republicans. Also, “activists” is doing a lot of work, there. See “Federalist 68, the Electoral College, and Faithless Electors.” The kicker: “The House failed to establish that this impeachment effort was anything other than politics as usual. Next time, hopefully, it will do better.” Next time?! The whole article is well worth a read; it is not sparing of Pelosi’s leadership, which seems to have similarities to the management at Shadow.


Note the differences in coverage:

Amid irregularities, AP unable to declare winner in Iowa AP

Presidential caucus results NBC. NBC says that the results are “100% in,” but does not declare a winner.

Pete Buttigieg keeps narrow lead in Iowa caucuses with 100% of precincts reporting CNN. Includes video where CNN “surprises” Buttigieg with the happy result at one of its Town Halls: Buttigieg: “That’s fantastic news, to hear that we won.” Iowa caucus chairs do not agree:

* * *

Iowa Caucus Results Riddled With Errors and Inconsistencies NYT. “According to a New York Times analysis, more than 100 precincts reported results that were internally inconsistent, that were missing data or that were not possible under the complex rules of the Iowa caucuses.” It’s enormously irresponsible for the Times to undercut the results without releasing a tabulation of the errors.

Chaos Continues in Iowa as Democrats Mistakenly Award Delegates for Bernie Sanders to Deval Patrick Democracy Now (MH). Interview with chair of the Black Hawk County Board of Supervisors, the state co-chair for Bernie 2020.

DNC Completely Loses Public Trust In Its Primary Process On Very First Day Caitlin Johnstone (Furzy Mouse). Hard to disagree. Here let us introduce “The Ludic Fallacy,” invented by Nicholas Nassim Taleb:

One example given in [Taleb’s The Black Swan] is the following thought experiment. Two people are involved:

  • Dr. John who is regarded as a man of science and logical thinking
  • Fat Tony who is regarded as a man who lives by his wits

A third party asks them to “assume that a coin is fair, i.e., has an equal probability of coming up heads or tails when flipped. I flip it ninety-nine times and get heads each time. What are the odds of my getting tails on my next throw?”

  • Dr. John says that the odds are not affected by the previous outcomes so the odds must still be 50:50.
  • Fat Tony says that the odds of the coin coming up heads 99 times in a row are so low that the initial assumption that the coin had a 50:50 chance of coming up heads is most likely incorrect. “The coin gotta be loaded. It can’t be a fair game.”

Democrats in Disarray

If You Think It’s Bad for Mainstream Democrats Now, Just Wait Jonathan Chait, New York Magazine. “[I]t is entirely possible that, following South Carolina, Sanders will have won three or all four of the contests. If nobody has emerged as a viable alternative by then, Michael Bloomberg’s campaign will be stepping in.”


Boeing Fixing New Software Bug on Max; Key Test Flight Nears Reuters

Boeing’s fraying 737 MAX suppliers see capacity crunch Reuters

Consultant to Boeing: cut dividends, invest in new airplane Leeham News and Analysis

Boeing’s Botched Starliner Test Flirted With ‘Catastrophic’ Failure: NASA Panel US News

How once mighty Bombardier became politically toxic in Quebec CBC

L’Affaire Joffrey Epstein

Judge demands answers from Jeffrey Epstein’s estate after millions of dollars flood into his dormant offshore bank in the Virgin Islands in the months following the pedophile’s death Daily Mail

Imperial Collapse Watch

Admiral Warns America’s East Coast Is No Longer A “Safe Haven” Thanks To Russian Subs The Drive (Re Silc).

What The Machiavellians Can Teach Us About The National Interest The American Conservative

How Serbian Immigrants Made an Ohio Town the ‘Fried Chicken Capital of the World’ Atlas Obscura

Antidote du jour (via):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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