Showing posts with label kamala devi harris. Show all posts
Showing posts with label kamala devi harris. Show all posts

Monday, February 06, 2023

6: Kamala

Year Two of the Ukraine War Is Going to Get Scary Ukraine, a country most Americans couldn’t find on a map in 10 tries ......... no U.S. combat forces are in Ukraine, so it feels as if all that we’re risking, for now, is arms and treasure — while the full brunt of the war is borne by Ukrainians. ......... to the extent that we have used our power wisely and in concert with our allies, we have built and protected a liberal world order since 1945, which has been hugely in our interest — economically and geopolitically. ......... an order in which autocratic great powers like Nazi Germany, imperial Japan or modern Russia and China are not free to simply devour their neighbors. And this is an order where more democracies than ever have been able to flourish, and where free markets and open trade have lifted more people out of poverty than at any time in the history of the world ........... this order has produced almost 80 years without a Great Power war, the kind of war that can destabilize the whole world. .........

Putin’s “marry me or I’ll kill you” invasion of Ukraine

.......... Putin, it’s now clear, has decided to double down, mobilizing in recent months possibly as many as 500,000 fresh soldiers for a new push on the war’s first anniversary. Mass matters in war — even if that mass contains a large number of mercenaries, convicts and untrained conscripts. .......... Putin is basically saying to Biden: I can’t afford to lose this war and I will pay any price and bear any burden to ensure that I come away with a slice of Ukraine that can justify my losses. How about you, Joe? How about your European friends? Are you ready to pay any price and bear any burden to uphold your “liberal order”? ......... “the hidden hand of the market will never work without a hidden fist — McDonald’s cannot flourish without McDonnell Douglas, the builder of the F-15.” Somebody needs to keep the order and enforce the rules. .......... Franklin Roosevelt’s 1939 State of the Union address. At a time when American security was in no way threatened — Hitler had not yet invaded Poland and the fall of France was almost impossible to imagine — Roosevelt insisted there were nevertheless times ‘in the affairs of men when they must prepare to defend not their homes alone but the tenets of faith and humanity on which their churches, their governments and their very civilization are founded.’ In both world wars and throughout the Cold War, Americans acted not in immediate self-defense but to defend the liberal world against challenges from militaristic authoritarian governments, just as they are doing today in Ukraine.” ............ International relations theorists, Kagan added, “have taught us to view ‘interests’ and ‘values’ as distinct, with the idea that for all nations ‘interests’ — meaning material concerns like security and economic well-being — necessarily take primacy over values. But this is not, in fact, how nations behave.

Russia after the Cold War has enjoyed greater security on its western border than at practically any time in its history, even with NATO’s expansion.

Yet Putin has been willing to make Russia less secure to fulfill traditional Russian great power ambitions which have more to do with honor and identity than with security.” The same seems to be true with President Xi when it comes to recovering Taiwan. ................. “The ‘isolationists’ in the 1930s were overwhelmingly Republicans. Their greatest fear, or so they claimed, was that F.D.R. was leading the nation toward communism. In international affairs, therefore, they tended to be more sympathetic to the fascist powers than liberal Democrats. They thought well of Mussolini, opposed aiding the Spanish Republicans against the fascist, Nazi-backed Franco and regarded Hitler as a useful bulwark against the Soviet Union. ............. Republicans were destroyed politically by their opposition to World War II and were only able to resurrect themselves by electing an internationalist Dwight Eisenhower in 1952.” .......... “Any negotiation that leaves Russian forces in place on Ukrainian soil will only be a temporary truce before Putin’s next attempt,” he said. “Putin is in the process of completely militarizing Russian society, much as Stalin did during World War II. He is in it for the long haul, and he is counting on the United States and the West to grow weary at the prospect of a long conflict

The Shift to Renewable Energy Is Speeding Up. Here’s How. The head of the world’s leading energy organization called the war in Ukraine an “accelerator” of the transition. ............ an estimated $1.4 trillion poured into “clean energy” projects in 2022, a category that includes solar farms, batteries and electric vehicle charging stations. ......... more than ever before, and more than the money that poured into new oil and gas projects ........ Renewables are increasingly affordable, once they’re built, and they offer security as well. ........ In Europe, wind and solar accounted for 22 percent of electricity generation last year, overtaking for the first time the share of gas (20 percent) and coal (16 percent) ......... Globally, renewable energy installations grew by 25 percent in 2022. ....... China’s investments exceeded, by a long shot, that of every other country. ........ In 2022, nearly 15 percent of all new car sales globally were electric, compared to 3 percent of all new car sales in 2019 ........ China’s biggest electric car and bus maker, BYD, has a higher global market share than Tesla. ......... by 2030, every second car sold in the biggest car markets — China, the United States and Europe — will be powered by electricity, not fossil fuels. ......... If you want to develop a solar project in Brazil or India, Birol said, you’re likely to pay three times more for financing than if you were to build the same project in Europe. .......... “The biggest hurdle in front of us is the cost of capital,” Birol said.

It’s Time for a Reality Check on Eggs They’re expensive, difficult to find and myths about them abound on social media. Here’s what to know. ....... An avian flu outbreak in the United States killed millions of hens last year, eliminating a critical egg supply. ...... To Joe Rogan, eggs cause blood clots. To some on Twitter sharing screenshots of the abstract of a scholarly paper, yolks can ward off Covid. ........ Since eggs are rich in cholesterol — a single egg yolk can contain around 200 milligrams — and high lipid levels have been linked to poor cardiovascular health, some targeted them as an easy dietary fix: Ditch the eggs Benedict, and protect your heart. ........ “if you eat a cheese omelet today and you haven’t eaten one in a while, your arteries aren’t going to clog immediately,” she said. Eggs are also high in protein, making them an alternative to meat, which tends to be high in saturated fat. ........ promote eggs as a “nutrient-dense” protein source. ........ Are eggs all they’re cracked up to be? ........ Eggs contain vitamins B, E and D, and they’re low in saturated fat. “You get high protein for low calories” ......... They also contain nutrients that are beneficial for your eyes and bones ......... some eggs are enriched with omega-3 fatty acids, depending on what hens have been fed. ............ eating them in moderation, like one full egg (including the yolk) per day, is safe for people who don’t have underlying cardiovascular issues ......... yolk is also where most of an egg’s vitamins lie ......... A breakfast that features an egg with toast and fresh fruit, for example, is far better for your heart health than a doughnut and sweetened coffee.

Kamala Harris Is Trying to Define Her Vice Presidency. Even Her Allies Are Tired of Waiting. Ms. Harris is struggling to carve out a lane for herself in what may be one of the most consequential periods in the vice presidency. ........ The teachers she was about to address were on the front lines of the nation’s culture wars, Ms. Harris told her staff. They were the same ones on the front lines of school shootings. ....... She has already made history as the first woman, the first African American and the first Asian American ever to serve as vice president, but she has still struggled to define her role much beyond that legacy. ........ she is expected to not do anything to overshadow Mr. Biden while navigating intractable issues he has assigned her such as voting rights and illegal immigration. And some see a double standard applied to a prominent woman of color. ......... Because the Senate was split evenly for the last two years, Ms. Harris has cast 26 tiebreaking votes in her role as president of the Senate, more than any vice president since John C. Calhoun, who left office in 1832. Tethered to Washington, she could never be more than 24 hours away from the Capitol when the Senate was in session in case her vote was needed. ........... She has told her staff that she wants to make at least three out-of-town trips a week in the coming year. ........ the Ms. Harris they say they see when the cameras are off, one who can cross-examine policymakers on the intricacies of legislative proposals and connect with younger voters across the country. ........ “My bias has always been to speak factually, to speak accurately, to speak precisely about issues and matters that have potentially great consequence,” she said in the interview in Japan. “I find it off-putting to just engage in platitudes. I much prefer to deconstruct an issue and speak of it in a way that hopefully elevates public discourse and educates the public.” .......... In planning meetings before she travels abroad, officials from foreign governments have proposed meetings or public appearances with the first lady of the country Ms. Harris is visiting. Her staff rebuffs those proposals, saying the vice president is not visiting as a spouse but as the second-ranking official of the United States ........ Ms. Harris — who stands about 5-foot-2 ........ When the Biden administration confronted a shortage of baby formula across the nation last year, Ms. Harris declined a request by the West Wing to highlight efforts to solve the problem by meeting a shipment of formula at Washington Dulles International Airport .......... she feels most comfortable receiving intelligence briefings or addressing law enforcement officials, venues where she says substance is valued over politics ....... has watched the vice president try to distill complex health care issues in a way that “everyday citizens” can understand......... she asked if Americans can ever “truly be free” if a woman cannot make decisions about her own body. ...... how threats to Roe represent a broader threat to civil rights.

Jimmy Kimmel Takes on Trump’s ‘Sad’ Return to the Campaign Trail Kimmel called Donald Trump’s 2024 campaign “the political equivalent of when Michael Jordan went to play for the Wizards.” .......... “Trump also warned that if Ron DeSantis runs for president, he would consider it a great act of disloyalty. And, you know, loyalty means everything to the guy who cheated on his third wife with a porn star and thought it might be cool to hang his vice president.” — JIMMY KIMMEL ........ ‘DeSantis 2024: Make America Florida Again.’ ........ “I would tell them, I would sit them down and say, ‘Boys, whoever wins is the son we love more and that’s that.’ That’s how Trump does it.” — JIMMY KIMMEL

Doctors Aren’t Burned Out From Overwork. We’re Demoralized by Our Health System. the diseased systems for which we work. ........ The United States is the only large high-income nation that doesn’t provide universal health care‌ to its citizens. Instead, it maintains a lucrative system of for-profit medicine. For decades, ‌at least tens of thousands of preventable deaths have occurred each year because health care here is so expensive. ....... at least 338,000 Covid deaths in the United States could have been prevented by universal health care. ....... in 2021 alone, about 117,000 physicians left the work force, while fewer than 40,000 joined it. ........ One in five doctors says he or she plans to leave practice in the coming years‌. ....... burnout. Nearly two-thirds of physicians report they are experiencing its symptoms. ........ What’s burning out health care workers is less the grueling conditions we practice under, ‌and more our dwindling faith in the systems for which we work. What has been identified as occupational burnout is a symptom of a deeper ‌collapse. We are witnessing the slow death of American medical ideology. ........ a belief system made up of interlinking political, moral and cultural narratives upon which we depend to make sense of our social world ........ nearly one-fifth of physicians reporting they knew a colleague who had considered, attempted‌‌ or died by suicide during the first year of the pandemic alone. ........... the structural perversity of our institutions‌‌ ......... ostensibly nonprofit‌ charity hospitals have illegally saddl‌ed poor patients with debt for receiving‌‌ care to which they were entitled without cost and have exploited tax incentives meant to promote care for poor communities to turn ‌‌large profits. ......... Hospitals are deliberately understaffing themselves and undercutting patient care while sitting on billions of dollars in cash reserves. Little of this is new, but doctors’ sense of our complicity in putting profits over people has ‌grown more difficult to ignore. ........ Resistance to self-criticism has long been a hallmark of U.S. medicine and the industry it has shaped. From at least the 1930s through today, doctors have organized efforts to ward off the specter of “socialized medicine.” We have repeatedly defended health care as a business venture against the threat that it might become a public institution oriented around rights rather than revenue. .......... We sit ‌at our patients’ bed sides and counsel them on their duty to counteract the risks of obesity, heart disease and diabetes, for example, while largely ignoring how those diseases are tied to poor ‌access to quality food because of economic inequities. .......... teaches us to suppress critical thinking and trust the system, even with its perverse incentives. ........ a system of billing codes invented by the American Medical Association as part of a political strategy to protect its vision of for-profit health care now dictates nearly every ‌aspect of medical practice, producing not just endless administrative work, but also subtly shaping treatment choices. .........

Any illusion that medicine and politics are, or should be, separate spheres has been crushed under the weight of over ‌‌1.1 million Americans killed by a pandemic that was in many ways a preventable disaster.

........ our institutions, and much of our work inside them, primarily serve a moneymaking machine. .......... We have a responsibility to use our collective power to insist on changes: for universal health care and paid sick leave but also investments in community health worker programs and essential housing and social welfare systems. .......... If we can build an organizing network through doctors’ unions, then proposals to demand universal health care through use of collective civil disobedience via physicians’ control over health care documentation and billing, for example, could move from visions to genuinely actionable plans. ......... until doctors join together to call for a fundamental reorganization of our medical system, our work ‌won’t do what ‌we were promised it would do, nor will it prioritize the people we claim to prioritize. To be able to build the systems we need, we must face an unpleasant truth: Our health care institutions as they exist today are part of the problem rather than the solution.

The rise and rise of Xi Jinping — the strongman of China. Even before the Congress approved his third term, he laid out his decade-long vision for China....

Thursday, October 06, 2022

American Racism And Visas For Indians

Just from anecdotal evidence I get the impression the United States has been "punishing" India for "siding" with Russia. India is not. A lot of people I know are having visa issues. Visas that used to get issued within a week or two now have yearlong waiting periods. This is asinine. This is racism. Racism is a variant of the fascism virus. Liberty is the opposite of fascism. Donald Trump is a fascist. His last antic has been to threaten violence upon the Republican Senate Leader. Republican! 

You can not house liberty and racism in the same framework. 

Did you ask? Before you threatened Russia, did you ask India? Did you consult? Before you sent in weapons, did you ask? Did you consult? Was it a mutual decision that you should expect blind support? 

The Russian attack on Ukraine was a surprise to India. India did not have any say in it. India has disapproved of it. India has sent a lot of humanitarian aid to Ukraine. 

India was buying oil in the world markets. India continues to buy oil in the world markets. If high oil prices are not a problem, why is California sending oil rebates to all its people? The Indian foreign minister has made the point that what India buys in a month Europe buys in one afternoon. China buys from Russia and sells to Europe. 

India is not a party to the war. India disapproves of the war. But it is also being realistic that it is not in a position to end the war. Russia is. Ukraine is. The US is. But India is not. 

Tiny bureaucrats who used to topple elected leaders in Latin America make these decisions. They be like, India! 

India is the CEO of Google! India is the CEO of Microsoft! India is the CEO of Twitter! India is Vice President of the United States. 

India is best positioned to engineer peace if peace is possible. So far it does not look possible. 

A peacemaker is not a yes man. A peacemaker without integrity will not succeed. 

Putin is not the only one who does not want peace. The military-industrial complex in America does not want peace. It is making big money right now. Don't turn off that tap. 

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

Buy My Democratic Capitalism Book

Saturday, May 01, 2021

Biden Should Buy Vaccines For India

The rich countries are being unjust, selfish, and myopic. The variants now mutating in India will circle back to the US and Europe. 

Biden just launched a $4 trillion plan on top of his earlier $2 trillion plan. The only reason the US is able to "borrow" all that money is because the world accepts the dollar as the de facto global currency. 

The US could spend $6 billion from that pot and buy vaccines for everybody on the planet. Or it could spend $12 billion to do research to fight the triple mutant variants next year.

लास्सामा सुन छ, कान मेरा बुच्चै। For Nepal relying on vaccines to save the population from COVID-19 in short-term,...

Posted by Madhav Bhatta on Saturday, May 1, 2021

Monday, February 08, 2021

In The News (19)

Please, Biden, Try for 2 Million Shots a Day The administration’s vaccine plan isn’t ambitious enough. ............ the United States could get to 150 million shots in 100 days. ......... Now, like millions and millions of others, I watch the administration with a frantic eye to my own family’s survival. ......... Pfizer and Moderna, makers of the two vaccines that have been authorized for emergency use, have promised 200 million doses, enough for 100 million people, by the end of March.  

The Coronavirus Is a Master of Mixing Its Genome, Worrying Scientists New studies underscore how coronaviruses frequently mix their genetic components — which could contribute to the rise of dangerous variants. ............ The novel coronavirus has a propensity to mix large chunks of its genome when it makes copies of itself. Unlike small mutations, which are like typos in the sequence, a phenomenon called recombination resembles a major copy-and-paste error in which the second half of a sentence is completely overwritten with a slightly different version. ............... recombination may allow the virus to shapeshift in dangerous ways .............. related coronaviruses are quite promiscuous in terms of recombining with each other. There were also many sequences that cropped up in the coronaviruses that seemed to come out of nowhere. ............ Scientists have limited knowledge about whether recombination could give rise to new pandemic coronaviruses  

The Task Ahead for Biden on Climate The new president has shown a welcome interest in combating climate change. But more will need to be done. ..........  Put simply, the richest and most powerful nation in the world is back in the fight to rescue the planet from the fires, floods, famines, rising sea levels, human dislocations and other consequences of a warming globe. ................  In part because of Mr. Trump’s intransigence, the United States has struggled to meet its commitment in Paris to reduce emissions by 26 to 28 percent below 2005 levels by 2025; with the help of the coronavirus pandemic, which disrupted the economy, emissions have dropped by 20 percent ........... What might cut it is major new climate legislation that encourages serious investment dollars — in millions of emissions-free vehicles, in hundreds of thousands of new charging stations to service those vehicles, in a reimagined electric grid carrying power from plants that rely not on fossil fuels but on rapidly growing renewable sources, in a cleaner public transportation system and in millions and millions of weatherized homes. ................... If America’s legislators cannot deal with a present emergency, how likely is it that they can be persuaded to address a more remote one?  

Aleksei Navalny Is Resisting Putin, and Winning The opposition leader was sentenced to prison, but he has mobilized a vast movement that’s not done growing. .............. “Hundreds of thousands cannot be locked up,” Mr. Navalny declared from court to his millions of followers on social media. “More and more people will recognize this. And when they recognize this — and that moment will come — all of this will fall apart, because you cannot lock up the whole country.” ............ The opposition now has 40 offices across Russia, and most of its millions of followers are young people who have not challenged the Kremlin before. Among people ages 18 to 24, Mr. Putin’s popularity has slid from 36 percent in December 2019 to 20 percent.  

Putin Isn’t as Strong as He Looks For the first time in a long while, the Russian president isn’t holding all the cards. ............... On Sunday, over 5,000 people were detained — the most ever on a single day in Russia — including 1,600 in Moscow alone. ............. The odds seem stacked against the protesters, who remain a tiny fraction of the population. Though his approval ratings have declined from previous highs, Mr. Putin still commands substantial popular support. There is little sign of rifts within the Russian elite, and the government has a formidable repressive apparatus at its disposal. The Kremlin also has a firm grip on the political system: United Russia holds 335 out of 450 seats in the State Duma, and the rest are mostly held by parties that back the government. ................ It’s an “imitation democracy,” as the Russian political scientist Dmitri Furman termed it. However autocratic Mr. Putin may wish to be, he still requires a facade of legality and regular elections. .............. United Russia is polling at about 30 percent and will be looking nervously over its shoulder: Elections to the national parliament are due in September. ............. A generation that has grown up entirely under Mr. Putin’s rule is more willing than its elders to take to the streets and reject it. ............ In other countries of the former Soviet Union — such as Georgia, Ukraine, Kyrgyzstan and Armenia — contested elections have set off movements that resulted in transfers of power. ............ There is a long way to go before Russia can turn its “imitation democracy” regime into a living, breathing one.

Becoming Teammates in Life and Business Erin Higgins Coles and Drew Coles, who own a wedding band company, admit that learning to fight fair and communicate during arguments was a challenge. ......... Because marriage is an ever-evolving experience, we constantly shift, change and, in some cases, start over. ............. He dives right in; I’m risk-averse. We rarely see eye to eye. ......... We are competitive and stubborn. Because we work together, we lost who we were as a couple. Now we set aside time for ourselves individually and as a couple. We do dinner dates, take walks, ask each other questions about our lives, and share things we might not know about the other person. It’s a deeper level of talking than we normally do. And we don’t talk about work. We’ve matured in this relationship. ............  He’s learned to loosen up and enjoy the little things in life. He’s gotten better at showing his emotions. He had a wall up getting close to my family. He had a really difficult childhood and was raised by his grandparents. He’s learned how important family is. ............ Being together every moment of every day last year helped us learn to live with each other in a way we hadn’t been able to do before. Covid slowed us down and got us on the same page. ............ Erin is loving and has made me a stronger communicator. She’s helped me interpret who and what I am. She taught me the importance of family, what family really is and what family could be. Mine wasn’t as open, welcoming and outwardly loving as hers is.  I’ve learned what to take from my past and what I want to bring into my future and the kind of father I want to be. Now that we have worked out some of our issues, enough to see what we are bringing to this marriage, this relationship and what kind of parents we will be, we’re working on starting a family. ............... We’ve had dark times in our relationship, which made it hard to know where we would end up. Marriage takes work and a lot of self-reflection. The hard work is asking, “Is this worth the fight?” And “Why am I bringing friction to the relationship?” ............... We have learned to be less selfish. To be kinder to each other in the argument. You have to fight hard when it doesn’t seem easy to give the other person a smile, but you do because they need it. We are learning to stop and appreciate each other even in the worst of times.

The UAE is now offering citizenship to foreigners, and the economic gains could be ‘transformative’  Nearly 90% of the UAE’s roughly 10 million inhabitants are foreign nationals. ......... A major step forward in domestic policy, the move follows several months of historic reforms and diplomatic breakthroughs for the Middle Eastern trading and business hub. In August, the UAE became the first Gulf country to normalize relations and open direct flights with Israel. In the following months, the officially Muslim country introduced reforms legalizing cohabitation, allowing alcohol buying without a license, and permitting 100% foreign business ownership, compared with previous requirements of 51% local ownership when based outside of a free zone. .............. UAE citizens currently receive very attractive advantages: a high tax-free income; subsidized education, health care and fuel; incentive packages for buying houses and land; and pensions and retirement benefits from the age of 49. 

President Biden pledges to fix the racial wealth gap. Here are his plans  The median wealth for a white family was $188,200, compared to $24,100 for Black families and $36,100 for Hispanic families ........... In addition to proposing some sort of student debt forgiveness, Biden also advocated making public colleges and universities tuition-free for all families with incomes below $125,000. He also wants to nix tuition at two-year community colleges. Nearly 85% of Black bachelor’s degree recipients carry student debt, compared with 69% of white bachelor’s degree recipients ............ Biden also wants to expand access to $100 billion in low-interest business loans by funding state, local, tribal and non-profit lending programs in Black and Brown communities. He proposes expanding the role of Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs) in underserved communities.  

'The Democratic version of John McCain' As the critical swing vote in a 50-50 Senate, Joe Manchin has emerged as the most powerful man in Washington. ........ The West Virginia senator has become the central character in Democrats’ control of Washington, a conservative throwback who speaks his mind and is maddeningly frustrating to liberals. He sided with his party to give them a critical vote toward approving President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus plan, but is already vowing to cut back Democrats’ dreams of a $15 minimum wage and limit who gets direct checks.  ............ Manchin often publicly discusses how he’s struggling with issues or tough votes. In a nod to his state, he lives on a boat while in D.C. named “Almost Heaven.” ............ he has found mostly frustration during his 10 years as a senator, eventually declaring of the hallowed chamber: “This place sucks.” ............ The United States doesn’t have royalty, but Manchin is pretty close to the lord of the Senate at this moment now that he’s the deciding vote.  

The Supreme Court’s new, deeply fractured decision on churches and the pandemic, explained Amy Coney Barrett just handed down her first Supreme Court opinion, and it’s surprisingly revealing ........ the state bans indoor singing and chanting because, in the words of one of the state’s expert witnesses, “most scientists believe that group singing, particularly when engaged in while in close proximity to others in an enclosed space, carries a high risk of spreading the COVID-19 virus through the emission of infected droplets.”  

In The News (18)

Through Genetics, Luck or ‘Prehab,’ Tom Brady Endures at 43 The mother of the opposing Super Bowl quarterback was a year old when Brady was born. What’s he still doing here? ........... Old quarterbacks hobble around the field, propped on stiff hips and achy knees, their arms ragged and their faces craggy. They look like survivors, elevated in myth but diminished in stature. ............ Rigid and worn, older quarterbacks usually move as if they might be unable to tie the laces on their cleats. ........... Then there is Brady, a cyborg. He is 43. Does he have a wrinkle on his face? Is his arm bionic? Are his joints made of rubber? He probably can tie his own laces while doing downward dog. ........... will be the oldest player to participate in a Super Bowl, at any position. He is the only quarterback to start a Super Bowl after age 40, and he is about to do it for the third time. ........... This will be his 10th Super Bowl. He has won six of them and earned the game’s Most Valuable Player Award four times. .......... this season Brady threw 40 touchdowns, the second-highest total of his career. Still mobile in the pocket, he was sacked at a lower rate than his career average .......... Brady talks of playing to 45, maybe beyond. .......... and explained it in a 2017 book espousing muscle “pliability.” The goal is a spongy elasticity that can absorb all that life throws at a body ..........  Brady’s diet is mostly plant-based ........... He fills his body with protein shakes, TB12-branded electrolytes and lots of water — “Drink at least one-half of your body weight in ounces of water daily” ................. “Replacing injury and rehab with pliability and prehab” is a catchphrase. Sleep and mindfulness are also promoted ............ he has found the optimal blend of diet, exercise and sleep.   

The Working Mother And The Pandemic

A YouTuber Shoots to Literary Fame in France, Ruffling  Feathers The social media star known as Léna Situations, 23, had a pretty eventful 2020. She racked up millions of followers, became a best-selling author — and attracted criticism from the Paris book world.  .......... On her desk stood a nameplate saying “I am not bossy, I am the boss.” ..........  She is quick to laugh and talks with big, enthusiastic gestures, marveling on a recent morning at the large snowflakes falling outside her window. ............ She started sharing low-price fashion advice and makeup tutorials on her YouTube channel five years ago, as she was juggling several odd jobs to pay for her studies in a fashion marketing school. ...........  Her videos are often low-key and feature family and friends. In one, her father, a puppeteer who performed at schools and is currently unemployed because of the Covid-19 pandemic, makes jokes about his unfashionable clothes ............. how naturally curly hair should be acceptable even if artists like Beyoncé and Rihanna have straightened theirs. ........  “One positive aspect of social media is that it gives minorities a space,” Ms. Mahfouf said. “I hope that this dynamic will take off from social media to real life.” ........ in a country where French people of North African origin still suffer from stigmatization and discrimination. .......... With a few exceptions, like the young Moroccan-born novelist Leïla Slimani, voices like Ms. Mahfouf’s are rarely heard in the very closed French world of publishing, which is dominated by white men. ............ Unlike some YouTubers who hire camera operators and editors, Ms. Mahfouf spends days writing, filming and editing her videos herself. ............ “Social networks are my No. 1 priority, where I am the freest and the happiest,” she said. “And the internet won’t disappear anytime soon.”  

QAnon Believers Are Obsessed With Hillary Clinton. She Has Thoughts. The mass execution cult has roots in three decades of demonization. .......... The lurid fantasy of Frazzledrip refers to an imaginary video said to show Hillary Clinton and her former aide, Huma Abedin, assaulting and disfiguring a young girl, and drinking her blood. It holds that several cops saw the video, and Clinton had them killed. ............ Trump himself called Clinton “the Devil.” .........  “This is a Salem Witch Trials line of argument against independent, outspoken, pushy women. And it began to metastasize around me.” .......... “I don’t have one iota of sympathy for someone like her, but the algorithms, we are now understanding more than ever we could have, truly are addictive. And whatever it is in our brains for people who go down those rabbit holes, and begin to inhabit this alternative reality, they are, in effect, made to believe.” ............ Clinton now thinks that the creation and promotion of this alternative reality, enabled and incentivized by the tech platforms, is, as she put it, “the primary event of our time.”  

The First Post-Reagan Presidency So far, Joe Biden has been surprisingly progressive. .......... Franklin Delano Roosevelt was such a figure. For decades following his presidency, Republicans and Democrats alike accepted many of the basic assumptions of the New Deal. Ronald Reagan was another. After him, even Democrats like Bill Clinton and Barack Obama feared deficit spending, inflation and anything that smacked of “big government.” ............. Trump was a “late regime affiliate” — a category that includes Jimmy Carter and Herbert Hoover. ......... if Trump represented the last gasps of Reaganism instead of the birth of something new, then after him, Skowronek suggests, a fresh regime could begin. ........... a time when what was once conventional wisdom about deficits, inflation and the proper size of government has fallen apart ............. government, by getting the shots in every person’s arm of the vaccines, and building infrastructure, and helping working families, is going to be a force for good ......... His administration is working on a child tax credit that would send monthly payments to most American parents. ........ “Every major economist thinks we should be investing in deficit spending in order to generate economic growth.” ........ It’s not just that the Democratic Party has moved left — the old Reaganite consensus in the Republican Party has collapsed. ............ he has at least the potential to be the grandfather of a more socially democratic America. ........... both Abraham Lincoln and Roosevelt were “viciously” attacked from the left ........ “Moderation can stand as an asset if it’s firmly grounded in a repudiation of the manifest failure and bankruptcy of the old order. In that sense, moderation is not a compromise or a middle ground. It’s the establishment of a new common sense.”  

It’s Marjorie Taylor Greene’s Party Now She embarrasses some Republicans, but she’s no outlier. ........ By now, you’ve surely heard her theory that California wildfires might have been caused by a space laser controlled by Jewish bankers. That wasn’t Greene’s first foray into anti-Semitism; in 2018 she shared a notorious white nationalist video in which a Holocaust denier claimed that “Zionist supremacists have schemed to promote immigration and miscegenation.”  ........... She described the results of the 2018 midterms as “an Islamic invasion of our government.” ......... and several agreed that Democrats are controlled by Satan ............  The Texas Republican Party has adopted the QAnon slogan “We are the storm” as its motto, though it insists there’s no connection. The chairman of Wyoming’s Republican Party, who attended Trump’s rally on Jan. 6, said he might be open to secession. ..............  Senator Mitch McConnell floated openness to convicting Trump in a Senate trial, but ended up voting that such a trial was unconstitutional. Fox News, finger to the wind, purged many of its real journalists and gave the conspiracy theorist Maria Bartiromo a prime-time tryout. 

GOP's Future  a majority of House Republicans voted to reject the results of the 2020 presidential election ............ Histories of the modern Republican Party often place Ronald Reagan at their center. That is, in Levin’s view, a mistake, and one that obscures the true nature of the coalition’s tensions. “I think Reagan is better understood as a detour from a history that is otherwise a story of a constant struggle between populism and conservatism,” he said. Donald Trump was an inheritor of a tradition that stretches long before him — Pat Buchanan’s tradition, and Strom Thurmond’s tradition. He didn’t form a new Republican Party; he allowed a long-existing part to express itself. .................  The core institutions of American media, the academy, culture are abjectly left-leaning institutions. ............. I think that when conservatives think about universities now, they’re more inclined to think that there is no saving these institutions — we have to attack these institutions. ............. the culture of the right has become much more hostile to the establishment. .............. I don’t think conservatism can do its job in a free society in opposition to the institutions of that society. I think it can only function in defense of them. And a conservatism that becomes anti-institutional looks like a mob attacking the Capitol — which I don’t think is where anybody wants to end up. .................  conservatives need their own New York Times — a place that goes out and does reporting and is not completely bought into the movement’s incentives. ............ whether we can move a little more in the direction of a politics of ‘What does government do?’ and less of a politics of ‘Who rules?’ ............. I’d like to see a more democratized, majoritarian system. Levin would, among other things, add a filibuster to the House. .............. the filibuster plus the weird structural imbalances in our electoral system plus the system’s other veto points have created such a slow-moving form of government that symbolic politics can take over. .............. a functional republic, to be stable, has to not only enable enduring majorities to have their way but also protect durable minorities — large ones. .......... there are all kinds of structures in the system that compel accommodation, that require differing factions to work together if they’re going to achieve anything. ........... Congress was not intended to be like a European Parliament, where the majority rules for as long as the public will let it. .............. I would create a filibuster in the House before I would get rid of the one in the Senate. ................ the filibuster was not an idea of the founding fathers. They did not want a supermajority requirement in Congress. They thought about that and rejected it. ............. We have more filibusters than ever and more polarized politics than ever. More party line votes than ever. Less cooperation than ever. ............... how to fix American politics — how to recenter it on policy that changes people’s lives, rather than symbolic clashes that harden our hearts.

Liz Cheney’s Courage A reader praises her vote to impeach Donald Trump. Also: Renaming San Francisco schools; discrimination against Black girls; food pop-ups and safety. ........  her statement preceding her vote was one of the most powerful any politician has ever delivered, paving the way for the most bipartisan vote to impeach a president in our nation’s history. 

Fighting Covid Is Like Fighting a War Why Biden needs to go big and ignore the worries. .........  What we’re dealing with is more like a natural disaster than a normal recession, and the appropriate policy response is mainly a kind of disaster relief. ........... You spend what you need to spend to win the war. ............. Winning, in this case, means providing the resources for a huge vaccination program and for reopening schools safely, while limiting the economic misery of families whose breadwinners can’t work and avoiding gratuitous cuts in public services provided by fiscally constrained state and local governments.  ..............  Emergency spending may not be intended as stimulus, but it nonetheless has a stimulative effect. And wartime surges in spending have often been accompanied by bursts of inflation, because they can lead to an overheated economy. ................ the only way to find out what we’re capable of is to test our limits .............. every major element in the Biden plan has strong public approval. But support for stimulus checks is through the roof. ......... If you want effective policy on infrastructure, on the environment, on children and more, Biden has to deliver big, tangible benefits with his rescue plan. Otherwise he’ll squander political capital, and probably lose any chance to do significantly more.

In The News (17)

Workers in L.A.’s courts are dying of COVID-19 as in-person hearings, trials continue  “Judges are very strict with people not chewing gum, looking at cellphones, not wearing a hat,” De Salvo said. “But wearing a mask? That’s another story.” 

Virus Variant First Found in Britain Now Spreading Rapidly in U.S. A new study bolsters the prediction by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that the so-called B.1.1.7 variant will dominate Covid-19 cases by March. .......... A more contagious variant of the coronavirus first found in Britain is spreading rapidly in the United States, doubling roughly every 10 days ........  “We should probably prepare for this being the predominant lineage in most places in the United States by March.” ............. The first case turned up on Dec. 29 in Colorado ........ B.1.1.7 contains a distinctive set of 23 mutations scattered in a genome that is 30,000 genetic letters long. ........ The variant was separately introduced into the country at least eight times, most likely as a result of people traveling to the United States from Britain between Thanksgiving and Christmas. ........... The contagiousness of B.1.1.7 makes it a threat to take seriously. Public health measures that work on other variants may not be enough to stop B.1.1.7. More cases in the United States would mean more hospitalizations ........... the risk of dying of B.1.1.7 is 35 percent higher than it is for other variants. ..........  wearing effective masks, avoiding large gatherings and making sure indoor spaces are well ventilated. .........  Driving down B.1.1.7 will also reduce the risk that the variant will evolve into something even worse. Already in Britain, researchers have found samples of B.1.1.7 that have gained a new mutation with the potential to make vaccines less effective. 

A Parallel Pandemic Hits Health Care Workers: Trauma and Exhaustion Vaccines may be on the way, but many on the front-lines are burned out. Has the government done enough to help alleviate their stress? ............ and the exasperating public disregard for mask-wearing and social distancing ............. and the realization that she needed to spend more time at home after her children, 10 and 11, switched to remote learning. ......... Now, a year into the pandemic, with emergency rooms packed again, vaccines in short supply and more contagious variants of the virus threatening to unleash a fresh wave of infections, the nation’s medical workers are feeling burned out and unappreciated. .............  the crushing sense of guilt for nurses who unknowingly infected patients or family members, and the struggles of medical personnel who survived Covid-19 but are still hobbled by the fatigue and brain fog that hamper their ability to work. ..............  many Americans had scant appreciation for the tribulations that she and her colleagues face day after day. ........ “It feels like we’re failing, when in actuality we’re working with what we’ve got and we don’t have enough,” she said. “We feel quite helpless, and it’s a real injury to our psyches.” ................. the pandemic’s effect on clinicians who serve in poor communities. Many of the 2,000 medical, dental and mental health professionals who have participated in the survey so far say they are disillusioned. ........... two-thirds of American doctors said they had grappled with intense burnout during the pandemic, with a similar percentage reporting a drop in income. A quarter of respondents said their experiences with Covid had led them to exit the medical field. ............ 8 percent of doctors in the United States had closed their offices during the pandemic ....... As more and more medical staff members fall ill or quit, those who remain on the job have to work harder, and the quality of care invariably suffers ..........  a “parallel pandemic” of psychological trauma among health workers. .............  “The day before I got sick, I could comfortably run eight to 10 miles,” said Dr. Bial, 45, who started a Facebook group memorializing doctors lost to Covid. “Now I go out for a brisk walk and my heart is pounding. I’m starting to wonder whether these effects could be permanent.”  

We Know Very Little About America’s Vaccine Debacle It’s hard to solve a problem when you barely know what’s going on. .......  owing to failures of planning and monitoring, the federal government has essentially lost track of some 20 million vaccine doses that were delivered to the states during the previous administration. ......... We know that the 32 million or so shots that have been administered so far have gone disproportionately to wealthier, whiter Americans. ......  a comprehensive overhaul of the nation’s disease surveillance system, a massive upgrade of its data infrastructure and a reimagining of public health authority during a global crisis are all in order. ...... There’s a good chance that children will return to school come fall and that people across the country will be able to celebrate holidays in normal fashion by next winter. But the nation remains locked in a desperate contest, between its own ability to vaccinate people as quickly as possible and the virus’s ability to mutate and spread ever faster. Right now, the virus still has the lead.

What It Means to Be Black in America Six short films for Black History Month. ......... Ed Dwight Jr. was invited by his country to train to be the first African-American astronaut. But the United States never sent him to space. ...........  Founded in 1966 in Oakland, Calif., to combat police violence, the Black Panther Party and its story are a key part of our nation’s still-complicated racial narrative.