Links 12/21/2021

Links 12/21/2021 1

Little Penguins in Santa Suits With Bells Adorably Waddle Around the Matsue Vogel Zoo in Japan Laughing Squid (David L)

Missing 3-Year-Old Boy Says a Bear Kept Him Safe While He Was Lost in the Woods MyModernMet (David L)

Horse Sits On Beanbag And Plays Cards With Owner Animal Rescue (David L)

Images of dead giraffes highlight Kenya climate crisis NWorld. 🙁

Behind the outrageous viral obituary that people are calling ‘a masterpiece’ Guardian (Chuck L)

Alligator-Sized Millipede Fossil Found on English Beach Gizmodo (Kevin W)

Five ice-age mammoths unearthed in Cotswolds after 220,000 years Guardian (Kevin W)

How Kodak detected the first nuclear bomb, but kept it secret Little Green Footballs (Randy H)

Inside the Campaign to Save an Imperiled Cambodian Rainforest New York Times (David L)

Motorist drives out from tunnel filling with snow ABC (furzy)

AI debates its own ethics at Oxford University, concludes the only way to be safe is “no AI at all” ZMEScience (Dr. Kevin)

DIY At-Home Test Flags Dementia 6 Months Earlier Than Gold Standard Medscape

We are ingesting microplastics at levels that may be harmful MedicalNewsToday (David L)



Data Debunks ‘Milder’ Omicron; Toddler Vax Disappoints; NFL Punts COVID Testing MedPage (resilc)

WHO urges cancelling some holiday events over Omicron fears BBC

Sports Leagues Are Showing Us Just How Bad Omicron Could Get Atlantic (David L)

Moderna Covid booster produces strong antibody response against Omicron Financial Times. GM comments:

A fine example of science by commercial press release…

What does “pre-boost levels” in “can boost neutralising antibody levels 37-fold higher than pre-boost levels” mean?

Peak titers or titers at 6 months post-second dose?

That’s a rather important difference.

But academic labs put out many preprints, and those show that the booster gets you back to something approaching WT peak titers. Which compensates for the 30-40x neutralization reduction with Omicron. But that is peak post-booster levels. Within 3 months those have waned to the point you have problems.

That’s why the Imperial College assessment of VE for severe disease was at 73% at 3 months post-booster.

And 73% VE for severe disease is completely incompatible with any return to “normal life”…

As GM has maintained:


An example of health system damage (guurst):

From Politico’s AM European newsletter:

GERMANY DECISION LOOMS: The German government will meet with the country’s 16 regional leaders today to consider new COVID curbs in the face of the rapidly spreading Omicron variant of the coronavirus. The proposed restrictions may limit private gatherings to a maximum of 10 people who have been fully vaccinated or have recovered from COVID. German Chancellor Olaf Scholz on Monday warned that Omicron is highly infectious and the country has to “prepare accordingly,” our colleague Hans von der Burchard writes in to report.


CDC: Omicron now a majority of US COVID-19 cases — 73 percent The Hill

Biden Administration to Distribute 500 Million At-Home Covid-19 Test Kits Wall Street Journal. Distribution to start in January…

Omicron Surge Is Just Starting and America’s Pharmacists Are Already Burned Out Wall Street Journal (Kevin W)

The Left would sacrifice the unvaccinated UnHerd (John Siman). Liberals, not the left. Look at Corbyn attacking vax mandates.

Social Security offices have been closed for most of the pandemic. That effort to protect public health has wounded some of the neediest Americans. Washington Post (Kevin W)

Trump reveals he got COVID-19 booster shot to a booing crowd PBS (David L)

A patient at a care facility was in cardiac arrest. Paramedics refused to enter, citing covid restrictions. Washington Post (resilc)

Journalist Alex Berenson SUES Twitter for ‘violation of the First Amendment’ over his permanent ban for questioning COVID vaccines Daily Mail (JS). Oddly or not, no mention in the US press so far…The common carrier argument is deadly and might fly in CA, where Twitter has its HQ.

‘We Need a New Model’: Chile’s President-Elect in His Own Words Bloomberg (resilc)


G7 condemns ‘erosion’ of democracy in Hong Kong polls IBTimes (furzy)

Human cost of China’s green energy rush ahead of Winter Olympics Bangkok Post (furzy)


Report highlights sharp decline in British-Irish trade RTE (PlutoniumKun)

Due to being preoccupied with Omicron and having only so much bandwidth, we have neglected the blockbuster resignation of Lord Frost. Some catchup:

Do read the entire Tweetstorm (guurst):

New Cold War

Breaking News: Putin Is Finished, Russia Is Drafting The Articles of Surrender To Germany. Andrei Martyanov (guurst)

A Surprise Russian Ultimatum: New Draft Treaties To Roll Back NATO Anti-War (guurst)

Russia feels threatened by NATO. There’s history behind that Los Angeles Times


Giant rave in Saudi desert pushes kingdom’s changing boundaries Straits Times (resilc)

Imperial Collapse Watch

DEATH DRIVE NATION Brooklyn Institute for Social Research (Tom H). Important.

Harassment Of Navy Destroyers By Mysterious Drone Swarms Off California Went On For Weeks The Drive (Kevin W)

The American Drone War Is My Lai on Repeat Charles Pierce, Esquire (resilc)


Manchin might have killed Biden’s agenda — or opened the way to Build Back Better Washington Post. Kevin W: “WaPo giving cover for Manchin.”

Did Joe Manchin Kill Joe Biden’s Domestic Agenda? New York Magazine (resilc)

Joe Biden Has Failed to Level with His Party Politico

Coal Miners Urge Manchin to Rethink Opposition to Spending Bill Bloomberg

Bidens add to their family with new first puppy CNN

Why are US rightwingers so angry? Because they know social change is coming Guardian. Resilc: “Who isnt angry in usa usa? left, right, center, delusional, drug addicted…..”

Our Famously Free Press

Robert Lemke Sentenced to Prison for Journalist Threats Law and Crime (furzy)

Walmart illegally dumps 1m toxic items in landfills yearly, lawsuit claims Guardian (Kevin W)

Revealed: the Florida power company pushing legislation to slow rooftop solar Guardian (resilc)

Cyber Pirates Could Hold The Renewable Revolution For Ransom OilPrice

The Bezzle

Alzheimer’s experts call Aduhelm approval “indefensible in both scientific and clinical terms” New York Times (Adam T)

Guillotine Watch

Davos is dead Politico (Kevin W)

Class Warfare

‘No One’s Life Is Worth a Package’: Amazon Workers Are Organizing for Cellphone Access Vice (resilc)

Two U.S. senators seek probe into labor practices Reuters

After 75 Day Strike, Erie Ironworkers Win Big Changes Mike Elk. Lotta stamina!

U.S. Customs bans fifth Malaysian glove maker over alleged forced labour Reuters (resilc)

Antidote du jour. Wayne W: “Midge sends holiday kitten joy to everyone!”

Links 12/21/2021 2

And a bonus (guurst):

A second bonus (Tom H):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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