Rebellious Andean bear sneaks out of US zoo – twice BBC
Why can only big cats roar? Discover Wildife (resilc). Haha, snow leopards are special! Listen here.
What’s Inside the Earth’s Core? New York Times
Winter storm slams the West Coast, prompting rare blizzard warnings in Southern California CNN
Kombucha Cultures Can Be Turned Into Flexible Electric Circuit Boards ars technica. Will kimchee be next?
It’s Time to Rethink the Idea of the “Indigenous” New Yorker (Dr. Kevin)
After death of girl, 12 more detected with H5N1 bird flu in Cambodia Khmer Times (Dr. Kevin)
A must read thread:
A point that is often made is that widespread transmission and rapid viral evolution should make the virus become milder over time. We and others have pointed out that this is not the case for this virus (h/t @ariskatzourakis, @tryangregory). (2)
— Arijit Chakravarty (@arijitchakrav) February 25, 2023
Wastewater study finds #masks prevent #COVID-19 in schools https://t.co/23JNXzUldF cc @GidMK @DFisman @DrJenGunter @rkfmiller: “…it’s really promising for how we can be effective even with real-world masking strategies, and how it doesn’t have to be all or nothing.”
— Timothy Caulfield (@CaulfieldTim) February 23, 2023
Finally a vaccine to banish Covid for good? Nasal spray reduces risk of infection 86% — nearly DOUBLE protection given by shot in arm Daily Mail
This student was overwhelmed by ‘alarmist’ environmental education. So she designed her own college course. The 19th (David L)
Ukraine war: Zelensky wants Xi Jinping meeting following China’s peace plan BBC. This is not even remotely in line with the Chinese thin high concept document, which was for Russian and Ukraine to talk. Signals Zelensky desire to keep in front of the cameras. May also be a self-preservation gambit. Would be a very bad look for the Collective West to engineer his ouster when Zelensky was pretending to be more willing to talk peace than they are. Also very much at odds with official reactions of his owners. But Zelensky has gone off script before, such as persisting in insisting that it was a Russian missile that whacked two Polish farmers. China may humor Ukraine by offering a meeting between Wang Yi and Ukraine foreign minister Dmytro Kuleba, although they just had an off-the-cuff chat at the Munich Security Conference. That would still put the US in the position of having to quash this.
“The idea that China is going to be negotiating the outcome of a war that’s a totally unjust war for Ukraine is just not rational,” Pres. Biden tells @DavidMuir of China’s peace plan. https://t.co/DSROdHF7Kb pic.twitter.com/lSH32uwYcr
— World News Tonight (@ABCWorldNews) February 25, 2023
“China’s peace plan” was expectedly not appreciated in the US. “Beijing’s proposal should have ended after the first paragraph calling for ‘respect the sovereignty of all countries,’” @JakeSullivan46 said. What are you talking about respect for sovereignty? 🤡 pic.twitter.com/tX4EOWeYW9
— 🅰pocalypsis 🅰pocalypseos 🇷🇺 🇨🇳 🅉 (@apocalypseos) February 24, 2023
“China doesn’t have much credibility,” — NATO chief Jens Stoltenberg on China’s peace proposal pic.twitter.com/o3YwmmUodq
— Trollstoy (@Trollstoy88) February 24, 2023
U.S. Hegemony – At War With China’s Global Security Initiative Moon of Alabama (Chuck L). Troublingly, Wang Yi does not have the structure of the Minsk Accords right. The only parties who signed it were Russia, Ukraine and the OSCE. Leaders of the two separatist regions signed it not officially but only in an observational capacity so as not to have their signatures be construed as conferring them with any legal status.
China to train 5,000 security personnel from developing countries over next 5 years | South China Morning Post
High Energy Prices Force World’s Largest Chemicals Company To Cut Jobs OilPrice (Kevin W)
Rishi Sunak to defy Tory right and push ahead with Northern Ireland protocol deal Financial Times (Kevin W)
BREXIT UPDATE THIS IS NOW OFFICIAL, ALL HOUSEHOLD MOVES MUST BE CLEARED BY T1.
Afternoon, as of today French Customs have stopped allowing smart clearances. Meaning, every single household removal must travel on a T1 bond and must be discharged in the destination country.
— ciaran the euro courier 🇪🇺🇮🇪 (@vanmaneuro) February 24, 2023
New Not-So-Cold War
NATO on the precipice Politico
TRANSCRIPT: Administrator Samantha Power and NSA Jake Sullivan on CNN Town Hall – Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine: One Year Later USAID
President Vladimir Putin’s State of the Nation address, 21 February 2023 Gilbert Doctorow
More Evidence Emerges That US Wanted Russia to Invade Consortium News (furzy)
Cockefair Lecture Feb 23th 2023 UMKC Live Stream, YouTube. John Mearsheimer.
One year later, are US-German relations headed toward rough seas? Responsible Statecraft
US attempts to win over UN members who are neutral on war in Ukraine Guardian (Kevin W)
Blinken Aims to Pressure Russia on Trip to Central Asia, India Bloomberg
Russian Foreign Ministry:
in connection with the preparation by the Kiev regime of a military provocation against Pridnestrovie
❗️ Any actions that pose a threat to their security will be considered in accordance with international law as an attack on the Russian Federation . pic.twitter.com/yd5e7mjFw7
— Таино (@Omani1love) February 24, 2023
Correct me if I have this 50,000 foot summary wrong. The Moldovan PM has demanded that Russian peacekeepers leave Transistria. There is a huge cache of weapons in a warehouse very close to the Ukraine border. The Russian peacekeepers are only part of the peacekeeping force, my impression is representing something like 40% of the total # of 1100 or 1200. The administrative structure is not clear to me but if these are proper peacekeepers, they report to whatever the peacekeeping body is. If that is correct, the MoD is saying it will act to defend Russia’s interests, as in it’s not going to let Ukraine steamroll an underpowered peacekeeping contingent.
Note there is considerable speculation about the huge weapons stockpile. Even if most is no better than scrap due to age and lack of maintenance, there is so much there are presumably weapons that could be salvaged. An alternative theory, which may be Russian propaganda, is that enough of the stuff there has become a hazard risk (how?) that it can’t be safely removed. A third line of discussion is that the reserve is so large that if Russia were to detonate it to prevent Ukraine use, it would be a nuclear-bomb-force blast.
US Ambassador Says Israel Can Do ‘Whatever They Need’ Against Iran Antiwar (resilc)
Elite IDF reservists threaten to stop showing up for duty over judicial overhaul The Times of Israel
Let there be no doubt: this is Netanyahu giving the ultimate middle finger to the entire international community & to every US President since 1996.
If he can do this, what can he not do?
Could this be Smotrich’s first volley after assuming broad authorities in the W. Bank? pic.twitter.com/j6w5KhpKnN
— Daniel Seidemann (@DanielSeidemann) February 23, 2023
Watch to the end. IDF leaving Nablus after “operation” that killed 10 people. Watch that last IDF vehicle turn to deliberately plow into a crowd of people. This is what no accountability means. Govt praises its fighters, Israel defenders attack critics, & video evidence? Meh. https://t.co/ghQQEOK7EG
— Lara Friedman (@LaraFriedmanDC) February 24, 2023
Tunisia forces arrest senior opposition figure as crackdown escalates Guardian
Big Brother is Watching You Watch
Virtual drug test: Airmen can now pee in cups on video DuffelBlog
US Air Force is giving military drones the ability to recognise faces New Scientist (Dr. Kevin)
Imperial Collapse Watch
In the CIA we didn’t give a hoot about democracy… If a country didn’t co-operate with us, democracy didn’t mean a thing, and I don’t think it means a thing today — ex-CIA Philip Agee pic.twitter.com/uhazsDtNzt
— Maria ⏳ (@real1maria) February 23, 2023
The Weapons That Win World Wars Austin Vernon (resilc). I am sure military equipment junkies will have a field day. Praises US weaponry without exhibiting awareness of Russian capabilities.
The corruption of massive industry ‘sweeteners’ in foreign arm sales Responsible Statecraft (resilc)
Congressman Matt Gaetz Introduces War Powers Resolution to Force House Vote on Removal of U.S. Armed Forces from Syria Matt Gaetz (resilc)
Northern Suffolk Chemical Bomb
How Congressional Rail Industry Allies Helped Block Safety Regulations Intercept (resilc)
It’s possible that highly toxic dioxins were formed when East Palestine officials burned vinyl chloride at the derailment site—but authorities still aren’t testing for it.
Residents hosted independent chemical experts at a community town hall to try and get answers. pic.twitter.com/h9fcLjpn3t
— BreakThrough News (@BTnewsroom) February 25, 2023
Our No Longer Free Press
The New York Times Joe Costello
The fear being expressed here — “an ideologically-based narrative…will take hold in the public consciousness” — is what’s already happened.
For 2 years, all we were allowed to see was the 1/6 footage that Adam Schiff and Liz Cheney picked for us.https://t.co/U5YN4UvdDw
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) February 25, 2023
Stanford Faculty Say Anonymous Student Bias Reports Threaten Free Speech Wall Street Journal
Microsoft Has Been Secretly Testing Its Bing Chatbot ‘Sydney’ For Years The Verge. Why is it no surprise that Microsoft sucks at testing?
Almost 40% of Domestic Tasks Could Be Done By Robots ‘Within Decade’ Guardian
I Broke Into a Bank Account With an AI-Generated Voice’ Vice. Yours truly is slipping! Only 2 days ahead of the press! I warned that banks would soon need to rethink the use of voice IDs due to the ease of simulating a voice from just a pretty small clip, a technology that’s been underway since the early 200s.
Workers Are Dying in the EV Industry’s ‘Tainted’ City Wired (resilc)
Reimagined Jet Ski Brings EVs To the Beach IEEE
NLRB bans non-disparagement and confidentiality mandates in severance agreements Ohio Employer Law Blog. Paul R: “This will be awesome if it holds up. I wonder if a court will throw it out like it did California’s ban on mandatory arbitration clauses.”
Even hackers are reportedly getting laid off by organized crime groups Business Insider (Paul R)
To fix U.S. public health, physicians need to take a backseat STAT (Dr. Kevin). I have pinged IM Doc and anticipate he will vehemently disagree. Lambert linked to this in Water Cooler. The fallacy here is the assertion that the sort of public health intervention he wants at a population level have a significant social welfare component and will therefore simply never happen. And getting more constituencies involved will stymie, not enhance, the ability to act. You’d get even more “camels as a racehorse designed by a committee” than you have now.
Prosecutors say Sam Bankman-Fried helped create a new company with no employees to get round FTX being rejected for a bank account in California Business Insider (Kevin W)
The metaverse has failed? It never even took off South China Morning Post (furzy)
Secret crawlspace cryptomine discovered in routine inspection of MA high school ars technica (furzy)
When Neoliberals Declared War on the Poor CounterPunch (resilc)
Death on a Dairy Farm Propublica (resilc)
More Americans Are Turning to Part-Time Jobs Wall Street Journal
There is No Upside to School Vouchers In the Public Interest
High-skilled visa holders at risk of deportation amid tech layoffs Washington Post. Um, that is how employment-based visas work.
High Energy Prices Force World’s Largest Chemicals Company To Cut Jobs OilPrice (Kevin W)
Antidote du jour. John M: “Taken in my yard last summer.”
And a bonus (guurst):
🔥 This adorable Newfoundland Pine Marten pic.twitter.com/RhgrJzzBod
— Nature Is Lit (@NatureIs_Lit) February 18, 2023
See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.