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Saturday Morning Coffee Break | Main | Saturday Gardening and Puttering Thread, October 2
October 02, 2021

Random Weekend Musings


I guess some disorder has to precede "founding order".

Things have been moving fast in Washington D.C. One response by Gerard Van der Leun has been to look back to Tocqueville: Volume 2 Section 4: Influence of Democratic Ideas and Feelings on Political Society.

I seek to trace the novel features under which despotism may appear in the world. The first thing that strikes the observation is an innumerable multitude of men, all equal and alike, incessantly endeavoring to procure the petty and paltry pleasures with which they glut their lives. Each of them, living apart, is as a stranger to the fate of all the rest; his children and his private friends constitute to him the whole of mankind. As for the rest of his fellow citizens, he is close to them, but he does not see them; he touches them, but he does not feel them; he exists only in himself and for himself alone; and if his kindred still remain to him, he may be said at any rate to have lost his country.

How has the era of social media changed these conditions?

Above this race of men stands an immense and tutelary power, which takes upon itself alone to secure their gratifications and to watch over their fate. That power is absolute, minute, regular, provident, and mild. It would be like the authority of a parent if, like that authority, its object was to prepare men for manhood; but it seeks, on the contrary, to keep them in perpetual childhood: . . .
Thus it every day renders the exercise of the free agency of man less useful and less frequent; it circumscribes the will within a narrower range and gradually robs a man of all the uses of himself. The principle of equality has prepared men for these things; it has predisposed men to endure them and often to look on them as benefits.

And it goes much deeper than this at the link.

The Border

Haitians push out locals in Colombia as landlords go for U.S. dollars from Haitians on the move to the USA.

How did 30,000 Haitians get to Texas?

Well, they weren't in Haiti.

Up to 400,000 illegal border crossers expected in October.

Vice President Kamala Harris continues to search in the Northern Triangle for "root causes" of migration outside the U.S. and far away from the southern border. Well, when she's endorsing anti-Israel statements that are played on Iranian TV.

Perhaps someone not born in the United States could clear up the border situation for her (Jeff Note: the author of this post is a LEGAL immigrant):

1. The United States is the greatest country on Earth, allowing the most freedom and opportunity to thrive.

2. Democrats offer migrants generous benefits to enter the country illegally and are working on a pathway to citizenship.

3. The places these migrants are leaving don't have the capability to provide the same sorts of social benefits or opportunities.

There are your root causes right there. You're welcome.

The Virus

Yesterday's big news was that they stopped the study of Merck's early oral anti-viral medication before completion, based on favorable outcomes for the drug. Emergency authorization is expected soon.

A simple oral medication to help treat Covid-19 has been an elusive goal since the start of the pandemic. Other drugs, including Gilead's remdesivir, have also been shown to reduce hospitalizations if given early in the course of disease, but must be given intravenously.

Facebook fact-checkers call remdesivir "unapproved" because they refer back to the WHO instead of US authorities. Heh.

This drug is structurally related to remdesivir. It causes mutations in viral RNA. It may be carcinogenic, which in the past was a death sentence for any prospective drug.

How remdesivir became the standard of treatment for severe COVID patients in the USA is an enraging story.

Tamiflu is no great shakes for the flu, either. Just a warning not to get too excited about this new "Tamiflu for COVID". And to take it EARLY if it turns out to be a miracle drug. Maybe it will work for flu, too.

A deal was signed between Merck and the U.S. government back in June.


There is also a study which suggests that health care workers on low-carb, high-protein diets have a greater chance of developing severe COVID than people on, like, vegetarian or pescatarian diets.

I have a theory that if this study is valid, it may have something to do with lipids. It is thought that the virus hijacks lipid metabolism in the lungs. This may explain the positive effects of statins and fenofibrate.


I ran across a story on Steve Job's stunning daughter making her Paris modeling debut. Well, maybe she is stunning, but you would never know it, because of what they put on her face. And she can't smile, of course. I doubt that it was easy growing up with Steve Jobs as a dad. Still, why can't models smile?

Her beau is not a real fashion plate. Harry Hudson is a cancer survivor who hung with some pretty cool Hollywood kids. You wonder how he came to run with this crowd. Sells some clothes. Nothing fancy. I don't want to be to hard on this guy. He's a cancer survivor and has lost his dad. But he doesn't seem like he's 27 years old, somehow. Is he representative of others his age?

An earlier bicycle built for two:

That song sorta got associated with computers. It's a six minute story:

This girl doesn't seem to have needed celebrity kid connections:

October is here. Kind of fits in with a song reminder from SF Goth related to the replacement of science with alchemy:

Hope you have something nice planned for the weekend.

This is the Thread before the Gardening Thread.

Serving your mid-day open thread needs

digg this
posted by K.T. at 11:29 AM

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