Quick Hits

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Data from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services shows Alabama’s positivity rate on PCR tests – the most accurate type of COVID test available – was 18.5% on July 26, the most recent date for which data was available.

At a certain threshold of heat and humidity, “it’s no longer possible to be able to sweat fast enough to prevent overheating,” said Radley Horton a professor at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.

Scientists have found that Mexico and Central America, the Persian Gulf, India, Pakistan and Southeast Asia are all careening toward this threshold before the end of the century.

That sounds pretty awful, TBH.

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Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter

Comments

  1. Jay L Gischer says:

    I think Scarlett Johansson has a point.

    As to the CA recall, here’s something to consider. 80 percent of Republicans have pegged the meter in enthusiasm to vote. Will that number go up or down in the next 6 weeks? Also, 55 percent of Democrats are enthusiastic. Will that number go up or down? Even at these levels, Newsom is winning by 3 or so points.

    And at the same time, “it’s gonna be close” is probably a story that will motivate more D’s to vote, since they are likely to think it doesn’t matter.

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  2. de stijl says:

    Re Simone Biles.

    I took a prescription drug where one of the more obscure side effects was vertigo. I hit the 1 in a thousand jackpot per my doc.

    Short intense bursts where the concept of floor, wall, and ceiling make equal sense and no sense at all. 10 to 30 seconds of untethered from gravity reaction.

    Worst was when I was sitting down watching tv or playing a game and out of nowhere and x, y, and z axis made equal competing claims on my amygdala. I just gripped the armrests and held on until it went away. It was pretty spooky.

    It does feel a bit like falling a la the famous Hitchcock movie poster, but is a richer feeling. Falling, spinning, floating.

    It struck without warning BAM! And then the absolute basics of gravity occasionally fled out the window.

    There was an Aussie or Kiwi pro golfer who had persistent vertigo. Had to lay down flat on the ground occasionally to cope. I felt for him. The feeling is extremely uncomfortable.

    Mess with the inner ear at your own peril.

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  3. Teve says:

    At a certain threshold of heat and humidity, “it’s no longer possible to be able to sweat fast enough to prevent overheating,” said Radley Horton a professor at Columbia University’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.

    Scientists have found that Mexico and Central America, the Persian Gulf, India, Pakistan and Southeast Asia are all careening toward this threshold before the end of the century.

    That sounds pretty awful, TBH.

    Typical ‘Gloom and Doom’ Liberal. You’re ignoring the beneficial aspects of this—Exxon has created a tremendous amount of shareholder value!

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  4. Kurtz says:

    @Teve:

    Typical ‘Gloom and Doom’ Liberal. You’re ignoring the beneficial aspects of this—Exxon has created a tremendous amount of shareholder value!

    He’s also conveniently ignoring that CO2 is great for plant life! I’m so tired of these communists trying to hide their agenda with labels like “environmentalism” and “critical theory.” If only Kevin could channel Joseph.

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  5. de stijl says:

    @Kurtz:

    If only Kevin could channel Joseph went over my head whoosh.

    You are clearly referencing something. Please clue me in. I am unaware or have forgotten.

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  6. Jax says:

    @de stijl: I have a fear of heights. It includes my drone, and drone work at high elevations, specifically the take off and landing. There’s a certain point in the sky where I lose all sense of where my bird is and relation to the landing point, it’s some crazy mind wackiness. I can’t even imagine throwing my body around like that, and experiencing the same thing. At least with the drone I can let it hover while it’s landing and get my bearings again.

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  7. David S. says:

    The ScarJo thing will be interesting if it goes to court. Figuring out the legal nuances of streaming services and how they compute into actual residuals for the people who made the films/shows is a complicated thing and most of the all-in on streaming pre-pandemic appeared to be driven by execs using the new platforms as an excuse to write contracts in ways unfriendly to the actual creatives and low-levels.

    Song as old as time and all that. AFAIK, it hasn’t been tested in court yet. As I recall, Christopher Nolan made a high-profile kerfuffle about it, but ScarJo is bringing an actual lawsuit. But I’m very distant from all this stuff, so grain of salt and I expect a specific other commentator to have more informed opinions.

    Also, in other entertainment news, two major players in the videogame space, Ubisoft and Activision-Blizzard are also being hit with lawsuits over terrible workplace culture. Details from the legal documents really hammer home why there’s a connection between Gamergate and the alt-right. I honestly struggle to imagine what it looks like for a female worker to have a drunk, male coworker crawl over the cubicles… and for this to be pervasive enough to be a named phenomenon.

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  8. de stijl says:

    @Jax:

    Myself, I do not fear heights but I do have great respect. I could easily die.

    I lived in high-rises half my life. It teaches perspective. It is a view I prefer.

    Getting weirded out by heights is totally cool. When I play games that require me to ascend a high point to acquire local map points sometimes I freak a bit. Ubisoft games are kinda predictable.

    It is entirely fictitious height but it feels real. I get a bit queasy even when I know my actual body is safe and sound in a chair but my perspective is several hundred feet up. It’s stupid and weird, but I get spooked by all that empty space below me up so high.

    I am super impressed and envious of your drone expertise. I envy you. Wish I could do the same. Maybe one day.

    My stupid friend decided to hang off my 20th floor balcony as a stunt. I nearly had a heart attack my heart went THUMPTHUMPTHUMP until he pulled his sorry ass back over the railing.

    I love Jon. He is an awesome friend to this day. But that day he pushed way too hard. It taught me nothing and freaked me the fuck out. He was dangling ~ 300 feet up. I was extremely freaked. It was not cool at all. I hold that as a mark against his judgement to this day.

    Mocking height is seriously uncool in my book.

  9. de stijl says:

    @David S.:

    I worked crunch.

    It is terrible.

    You have a scary long task list with deadlines. You feel incredibly obligated to your friends and coworkers to tick every box less that is the hinge point where all fails because of you.

    It is an artificial construct created by bosses who approved a literally undoable project plan with available resources.

    I was so petrified of, and guilted into, not letting my team mates down I would work 8am until 2am for months. 2 to 5 am buses came by on the hour rather than every ten minutes.

    No weekends. No holidays. 7 days a week. 12 to 20 hours a day and I still fell behind my list and the schedule. Overnights. Push harder.

    Once I went to work on Friday 8 am and got home 7 pm on Sunday. A crisis that needed handling. A faux crisis. A waste of time and talent.

    Multiply 7×16. Average week. Times four for a month. Seven months of crunch.

    My brain and body eventually rebelled. Had a panic attack on a bus ride home at 11pm. My very first so I did not know what to expect. I thought I was having a heart attack. I could not stop hyperventilating. I was seriously freaked out.

    Everyone else on the bus freaked out too. The driver stopped and hit his panic button. Three squad cars showed up and an ambulance. Minneapolis has decent emergency service response at the very least.

    I gulped oxygen until I realized I was not dying. Got ‘bussed to HCMC. Dealt with docs and nurses until 5am. I released myself against advice. Called a cab.

    Went to work next morning 8am pretending that everything was copacetic and hunky dory. Did not tell a soul. I was not going to let the team down.

    I would sob in the shower. Terrified of the day ahead. It is a miracle and sheer determination that I made it to launch day.

    I got familiar with anxiety and panic attacks. Go someplace quiet and empty and breathe deep for awhile. Agoraphobia creeps in with persistent stress. I am ashamed that I am weak and very strongly prefer that no one can witness that. Ever. Never. It becomes a persistent trigger.

    I tendered my resignation that launch day. I am done and outie. And fuck you very much.

    I delivered. And all for an artificial deadline and an unrealistic project plan.

    I thought I could cope. I planned on coping. I coped for months. Eventually I broke.

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  10. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @de stijl: If this helps any, I read “Qevin” and Joseph as Goebbels.

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  11. de stijl says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:

    I still don’t get it. Whoosh.

    It’s okay. I am an idiot often. No worries.

  12. de stijl says:

    @David S.:

    I hope a present day historian is basing her or his thesis on gamergate. That was some fucked up shit. Blaming SJWs for everything. Total mindless madness. Echo chamber self rationalization.

    Plus incel mysogyny. Another thesis or a thousand is needed there.

  13. David S. says:

    @de stijl: I forgot to mention that the first line of defense for Blizzard was an ex-Trumpist (Brian Bulatao).

    If you just want scholarship on Gamergate, typing the term in on Google Scholar yields 8110 results. My point is less that Gamergate was terrible and more that Gamergate is symptomatic of the overall toxicity of the gaming community, and a sizable portion of that toxicity is entrenched at industry giants like Ubisoft and Blizzard. (Ubisoft is getting sued by a labor union in France.) Having a suite nicknamed after Bill Cosby in honor of the rape allegations might be far above the usual threshold, but that also kinda suggests the bar is set pretty high for noteworthiness.

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