Tuesday’s Forum

FILED UNDER: Open Forum
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. MarkedMan says:

    I’ve been going against the grain here for a while, contending that in a half century or less historians will give the US a “C+” on our handling of the pandemic, rather than an “F”, as most commentators here seem to believe. This article (no subscription needed) illustrates why I say that. If we look at excess deaths rather than confirmed cases, we pretty much eliminate the problems caused by different abilities and will to accurately determine COVID as a cause of death. At 15% the US is high amongst wealthy countries, but we are not the highest. And we are substantially better than the moderate or low income countries, mostly dramatically better. Going into this, we were (and remain) a country with no national healthcare system, and huge gaps in our insurance coverage for the most vulnerable population. History will judge us harshly for that but nonetheless it is the reality we had to deal with in our response.

    To me, he biggest mystery on this list is the UK. National healthcare system and universal coverage led to a very high vaccination rate. Yet they have clocked a 12% excess death rate.

    Of course, with a proper health care system, we could have had results like Canada, at 4%, at least in the blue states.

    6
  2. Monala says:

    I haven’t visited this site much lately due to my own health issues and my mom’s recent death. So in posting here rather than yesterday’s (probably dead) thread about identity politics and NY politician Anthony Delgado.

    I’m actually someone who hadhad heard of him, despite not being in NY. I learned about him through Little White Lies, a documentary created by his wife Lacey Schwartz about her own search for identity.

    Ms. Schwartz was raised Jewish in a predominantly white and Jewish community. She had always assumed her olive skin and curly hair came from that heritage. When she went off to college, many black students she met there presumed she was African American. It led her to begin digging into her ancestry and learning that she is, in fact, part African American. (The “white lies” of the title are those of her parents, who never told her).

    One of the final scenes is her wedding to Mr. Delgado, in which they tried to incorporate aspects of both their varied heritages into the ceremony and reception. Since they got married in 2011 and he first ran for office in 2018, his complicated explanations of his ancestry predate his time in politics.

    ———

    One other comment about yesterday’s thread: James wrote:

    We’re also seeing a lot more of this in the Black community, with some questioning whether, for example, those with Afro-Caribbean ancestry who didn’t live through slavery and Jim Crow are truly members of the community.

    As an African American woman, I HATE this ADOS (American Descendants of Slaves) concept. (And I am a descendant of slaves in the US). First, it divides an already small community into further, arguably individually less powerful, factions. Second, it erases the contributions of many prominent African Americans of Caribbean descent (Shirley Chisholm, Malcolm X, Stokley Carmichael/ Kwame Ture, etc.). And finally, it reduces our identity to our descent from slavery, rather than the many other rich parts of our heritage.

    In the unlikely event that reparations ever become a reality, then maybe the distinction might be relevant. Otherwise, I want no part of it.

    12
  3. Jen says:

    @MarkedMan:

    To me, he biggest mystery on this list is the UK. National healthcare system and universal coverage led to a very high vaccination rate. Yet they have clocked a 12% excess death rate.

    I’d be interested in knowing when those deaths occurred. My guess is that like Italy, the deaths were likely predominantly prior to vaccine availability.

    I wouldn’t give the US an “F” grade, but would divide those grades into segments of before vaccine availability and after.

    @Monala: My condolences on the loss of your mother, and I hope that you are on the mend health-wise.

    3
  4. Monala says:

    @Monala: here’s an article and photo about the couple, who are raising their kids as Jewish: link

    Oh, an a correction to my previous post (besides the typos, which I couldn’t fix because I didn’t get an edit button): his first name is Antonio.

  5. Monala says:

    @Jen: thank you

  6. MarkedMan says:

    @Jen:

    I wouldn’t give the US an “F” grade, but would divide those grades into segments of before vaccine availability and after.

    And it’s also very informative to do an after-the-vaccine comparison between trump states and blue states. Trump states did much worse and are a large reason we are at that 15% as a nation. With the exception of the ground zero states, the blue states did as well as anywhere in Europe. And the ground zero states (NY, NJ, CA) did quite well after that first wave. The reason the US is in the bottom half of the wealthy countries is undeniably because of Republican governance. The more deeply entrenched the Republican Party is in a state, the worse that state did post-vaccine. And even in blue states, the red counties did significantly worse than the blue ones (correcting for population density).

    7
  7. MarkedMan says:

    @Monala: So sorry to hear of your Mom’s passing. My thoughts are with you.

    2
  8. CSK says:

    @Monala:
    My condolences on your mother’s death. It’s always hard when we lose the only people we’ve known all our lives. I’m sure you were a wonderful daughter.

    2
  9. CSK says:

    This is so depressing:

    thetriad.thebulwark.com/p/welcome-to-maga-nation?s=r

  10. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Monala: It’s tough becoming an orphan, no matter how old you are. Sorry for your loss.

    3
  11. Jay L Gischer says:

    @Monala: My sympathies. And thank you for the clarification of the situation of Delgado and Schwartz.

    2
  12. Jax says:

    The updated guidance on boosters from the CDC is a little confusing. Is it everybody 5 and up that can get one now, provided a certain amount of time has passed between doses? Or only the 5-11 crowd, and everybody 12 to under 50 who is immunocompromised, or is that just the 12-18’s who could only get a Pfizer shot?

    @Monala: So sorry to hear about your Mom, and I hope you get to feeling better.

    1
  13. Scott says:

    @Monala: Sorry to hear about your mother. Mom passed away about five years ago and I still miss her. Now my wife’s mother (age 82) just called to tell us she has Ideopathic Pulmonary Fibrosis which is fatal and incurable but with no timetable. I know she is just preparing us for the inevitable but, still, parents should be immortal.

    2
  14. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Brianna Wu
    @BriannaWu

    Tesla is going to be the next WeWork. If you look at the history of Tesla’s stock price, it was never based on car sales. It’s always been based on hype from Musk and a vision for a future. That vision was appealing to many, including liberal environmentally-conscious nerds.

    2/ But with the Twitter acquisition, Musk has gone full alt-right. And where the previous stock price required the press to mirror fantastical, illogical claims about autonomous robots, self-driving cars, and a magical future? Expect more skepticism.

    3/ Tesla’s stock price is completely divorced from any kind of financial reality. It’s worth MAYBE $150, and even at the new low if not worth $680. People are going to start digging into stock market questions, like “How profitable is each car Tesla sells?”

    4/ An army of utterly unethical Tesla-hype media (profiting from their own investments) has convinced people to look past these fundamental valuation questions for a long time. Those days are coming to an end where more of the mass public sees Musk for the fraud he is.

    5/ So, please bookmark this Tweet. Expect a Tesla stock crash soon. It’s going to go the way of WeWork, Theranos, Luna and all these other great scams of the 21st century. It will eventually settle of a fair valuation. Probably around $100.

    6/ Quick addendum: My main comparison here is to WEWORK. It’s literally the first sentence. WeWork is still around, selling office space. Secondly, in comparing Tesla to Theranos, I specifically mean the silencing of critics. Tesla has a long history of attacking journalists.

    7/ I read Musk’s recent announcement of a legal attack team as further intention to sue critics. Additionally, there are armies of financially-motivated Tesla propagandists hyping the stock. Theranos silenced critics and investors paid a steep price. The comparison is fair.

    I don’t know. I long ago pegged him for an all hat/no cattle blowhard, but Wall Street always disagreed with me. Time will tell.

    2
  15. Flat Earth Luddite says:

    Words fail me. stare decisis my ass.

    The US supreme court on Monday gutted constitutional protections that for years have provided a federal lifeline to innocent prisoners facing prolonged incarceration or even execution following wrongful convictions stemming from poor legal counsel given to them by the states.

    https://www.theguardian.com/law/2022/may/23/us-supreme-court-prisoners-ineffective-counsel-challenges?CMP=Share_AndroidApp_Other

    3
  16. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Scott: but, still, parents should be immortal.

    In our hearts, they are.

    4
  17. Flat Earth Luddite says:

    @Monala: My sympathies on your loss. May you find comfort in your memories of her. And I hope your health improves.

    2
  18. CSK says:

    @Scott: @OzarkHillbilly: @Flat Earth Luddite:
    This is going to sound odd, but when my parents were dying (in 2013 and 2014, respectively), what helped me through that a lot was being able to come here to OTB. Someone would always make me laugh, or pique my interest. Thanks.

    6
  19. MarkedMan says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I don’t understand the comparison here. It’s one thing to predict the stock price will come down to better reflect valuation, it’s another thing to compare it to Theranos, who never even had a sellable product. Even comparing it to WeWork makes no sense, since although they had a product their business model pretty much guaranteed they would never turn a profit. Tesla is overhyped and has true believers and all of that baggage, but they have been turning profits for a number of years now. They are a real company, with real worth, whatever that may be.

    2
  20. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Flat Earth Luddite: Beat me to it.

  21. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @MarkedMan: As far as WeWork goes, they are a real company too, still in operation. At the end she makes clear that her comparison to Theranos is only in Musk’s approach to anyone who dares to criticize him:

    6/ Quick addendum: My main comparison here is to WEWORK. It’s literally the first sentence. WeWork is still around, selling office space. Secondly, in comparing Tesla to Theranos, I specifically mean the silencing of critics. Tesla has a long history of attacking journalists.

    7/ I read Musk’s recent announcement of a legal attack team as further intention to sue critics. Additionally, there are armies of financially-motivated Tesla propagandists hyping the stock. Theranos silenced critics and investors paid a steep price. The comparison is fair.

    He attacks cavers who say mean things about him too. I await the “cease and desist” letter from his lawyers that I am sure to receive. s//… I think.

    I came across another thread about Tesla that I’ll be putting up soon too.

    eta comment #6. missed putting that in too.

    1
  22. becca says:

    @Monala: I’m sorry for the loss of your mom. My mom rejoined the stars 3 years ago. I can still conjure up her voice saying my name. I find that comforting. Feel better soon.

    2
  23. Sleeping Dog says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    Wu’s analysis is consistent with that any number of Wall St and auto industry observers. The helium is slowly escaping the Tesla balloon.

  24. Sleeping Dog says:

    @Monala:

    May your mother rest in peace.

    2
  25. gVOR08 says:

    Todays Doonesbury re-run seems awfully topical. Rick Redfern and Joanie Caucus are discussing Representative Lacey Davenport’s apparent dementia at age 90. Joanie thinks she should be pushed to resign. Rick thinks that would be unfair with Storm Thurmond still in office. Joanie replies, “No, that’s the Senate. It’s a museum over there.”

    1
  26. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Sleeping Dog: Thanx. I’m definitely not a follower of the industry or Wall Street.

  27. OzarkHillbilly says:

    E.W. Niedermeyer
    @Tweetermeyer

    In 2015 I decided on a whim to check out Tesla’s battery swap station that was earning the company 9 figures in California ZEV credits, and found it wasn’t real. Instead Tesla was using diesel generators to charge cars. Here’s how this changed my life

    Up to that point I had been skeptical that any startup automaker could succeed. That view wasn’t about Tesla, it was about the car biz. But what I found at Harris Ranch was shocking, a cockroach, and I decided to follow a life-changing instinct: THERE IS NEVER JUST ONE COCKROACH.

    Journalists are like investors, but instead of money they bet their time and effort. What I saw at the battery swap station was so at odds with the image of Tesla in 2015, I knew there was a good chance investing in scrutiny of Tesla would pay off. It did.

    A year later I found another big cockroach: Tesla was hiding defects by requiring customers sign NDAs in exchange for free repairs. This cut off the auto safety regulator’s only independent source of information about defects. This led to a couple of important lessons…

    First: MUSK’S KEY SKILL IS CONTROLLING INFORMATION. It’s not just crafting appealing narratives about himself and his companies, but also silencing anything that contradicts them. Tesla’s entire history is lined with NDAs, backed by sheer terror of what Musk will do when cornered

    That terror comes from another lesson: MUSK DOESN’T REFUTE, HE ATTACKS. I learned this after the NDA story, when an official Tesla blog post accused me of fabricating the reporting and doing so for financial gain. Zero evidence was offered to support this attack on my credibility

    What happened next taught another lesson: MUSK FANS DON’T CARE ABOUT FACTS. I was mobbed by online attacks that could not be dissuaded or mitigated by facts. My claims had evidence and his didn’t, yet hardly anyone knows my reporting and his 2016 lies are still repeated today.

    My book made some key claims that have proven true: Tesla can’t make affordable cars, Tesla can’t make its “Full Self-Driving” work, Autopilot has real safety issues, Tesla is fundamentally weak on manufacturing, and more. Here’s the hardest lesson: NONE OF THAT HAS MATTERED.

    As I realized this, and as I realized that Musk and Tesla were on a trajectory toward increasingly implausible and fraudulent claims (which massively enriched Musk), I realized: TESLA IS NOT AN AUTOMOTIVE STORY, IT IS A CELEBRITY STORY. Faith in Musk personally was what mattered
    ………………………
    In short: TESLA IS A CONFIDENCE GAME. Confidence in one man and the image he so ruthlessly controls is what holds it all together. Understanding why Musk’s dreams are bullshit is hard (learning about manufacturing and AI is cool though!), but anyone can grasp a person’s character

    More at the link.

    And yes, he is pushing his book. I am thinking about buying it

    4
  28. Monala says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: I think it was Marian Wright Edelman who said, “It’s hard not to be somebody’s child, even if you have children of your own.”

    4
  29. Monala says:

    Thank you, everyone, for your kind words and thoughts.

    3
  30. DK says:

    Salon: Why is Glenn Greenwald defending Tucker Carlson and the “great replacement”?

    Because Glenn Greenwald and Tucker Carlson are both enablers of fascism and pompous right wing bigots hostile to multicultural, liberal democracy.

    4
  31. DK says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: Musk has always been a phony con artist and Teslas have always been sloppily built. I have said this for years. Tesla has always been about status-chasing and hype over durable substance.

    4
  32. OzarkHillbilly says:

    @Monala: Well said. Ma died back in 2006, Pop in 2010. I’m still getting used to it. Occasionally they will visit me in my dreams, from which I awaken with a strong sense of dislocation, like everything is upside down.

    3
  33. Jay L Gischer says:

    I had a conversation last night with my neighbor. He is a professional chemist/chemical engineer. He knows people who worked for Theranos. Tesla is not Theranos. He drives a new EV, which isn’t a Tesla. I know another couple that has two Teslas. I estimate maybe 20 percent of vehicles observed during my commute are either hybrids or full EVs.

    My neighbor and I agree that this would not have happened without Tesla. Furthermore, we agree the strategy to start with a high-end vehicle that is sexy and attention grabbing as just a very cool ride with stellar performance was the right strategy. I am not guessing at Musk’s motivations with Tesla – I know people who worked for Tesla. It was about making EVs viable and popular. It succeeded. I think it is a slander to describe that as “status seeking”, frankly.

    That’s not to say there isn’t issues. The stock price might well go down. Musk says and does things that are questionable, for sure. And there are literally billions of dollars invested in his failure, and the failure of Tesla. Not just shorts, but the entire fossil fuel industry is lined up against him. Do you think those people are going to be quiet? Or are they going to spread rumors about how terrible Tesla is, and he is?

    I mean, have you ever heard the saying, “the enemy of my enemy is my friend”?

    I don’t think buying Twitter was a good idea for him, and now I don’t think it will happen. There are dozens of CEOs who are much much worse than him, but they hide behind PR departments. All those billions lined up against him have resulted in a lot of fabrications with regard to him and Tesla, and why shouldn’t they go after defamation? Of course he’s feeling combative, he has an entire industry lined up against him.

    Look, the Saudi’s tried to blackmail Jeff Bezos over coverage of Kashoggi. What makes you think they won’t try stuff re Tesla?

    I am not saying “say no wrong of Elon”. When stuff is broken, its broken. You’re entitled to not like things he says, too. But the sweeping condemnations and assumption of motivations bothers me a lot. The motives I’m in a position to know something about are flatly wrong. What does that say about the others?

    5
  34. Kathy says:

    @Jax:

    I prefer my own guidance:

    Vaccines are helpful at best and harmless at worst. Unless you’re allergic to a vaccine ingredient, or have some medical reason not to take the vaccine, then it’s ok to have a COVID booster every six months or so.

    2
  35. MarkedMan says:

    @OzarkHillbilly: That clarifies things, and it’s a legitimate point (the silencing of critics, I mean). But I still think WeWork is not a good comparison. They lose money as part of their business model and do not seem to have any plan to turn that around. Once they burn through the investors cash they will be bankrupt.

    Hmm. I suppose that now that the whacko is out, they could turn into a regular old real estate firm that rents shared office suites, something that has existed in one form or another for thousands of years. But that’s a highly competitive market and better done locally than nationally, from what I understand. I don’t see how they will ever generate a significant return on investment.

    Musk is melting down and he’s an obnoxious jerk and Tesla’s business practices are deplorable. But that doesn’t change the reality that it is the first new large US automobile company to break into the market in a century. It makes 100’s of thousands of cars a year and is closing in on a million. And they turn a profit doing it.

    1
  36. Sleeping Dog says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    What happened next taught another lesson: MUSK FANS DON’T CARE ABOUT FACTS. I was mobbed by online attacks that could not be dissuaded or mitigated by facts. My claims had evidence and his didn’t, yet hardly anyone knows my reporting and his 2016 lies are still repeated today.

    This is where the the educated, suburban/urban liberals that worship Musk are no different than the MAGAts in their worship of TFG. Both are so committed to their fears, MAGAts of being replaced and Musk-ites of global warming that they will broach no criticism of their god. The Musk-ites prop up surreal values of Tesla and the MAGAts make contributions to TFG’s PACs

    3
  37. EddieInCA says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    I haven’t followed the “WeWork” story very closely, and haven’t seen the Apple+ series about it, but I was, frankly, very surprised to see at least three very large WeWork locations in NYC during this trip. Just following the story peripherally, I had assumed they were out of business.

    Nope. Still there. With big signs and some business going on. Seeing the first one was surprising. By the third, I was thinking “Crap. I don’t know enough about this story.”

    1
  38. grumpy realist says:

    I suspect what will really put the dent in the Tesla balloon is when the insurance companies start charging more in light of the NDAs and Tesla’s crappy accident engineering.

    First, Tesla isn’t going to be able to get to ADAS level 5 (full autonomy). Second, at some point there will be an accident with a Tesla plus fire and the driver will end up being horribly burned or killed because he won’t be able to open the doors.

    In other words, Tesla’s engineering for “limp home” mode sucks.

    1
  39. DK says:

    @Jay L Gischer:

    But the sweeping condemnations and assumption of motivations bothers me a lot.

    Does this include Musk’s stupid, corrosive, and as it turns out self-defeating “sweeping condemnations” of his primary customer base of liberals and Democrats?

    To downplay Musk’s embrace of conspiracy theories and radical right wing extremism as merely “questionable” is too clever by half. We call it vile and disgusting when Trump spews the same garbage Musk spews — why does Musk’s trashmouth get rationalized? It’s not just “questionable” when Trump lies about Hillary and Russia, and it’s not just “questionable” when Musk does it. It’s wrong, gross, and dangerous.

    And the pretense that it’s “the fossil fuel industry” forcing him to tweet pooop emojis and pay off sex harrasment accusers and otherwise act like an arrogant, narcissistic, immature douchebag is laughable. Elon Musk is an adult. No one is responsible for Musk’s behaviors — and the inevitable bad outcomes of the same — but Elon Musk. Why can’t rich white men ever be held responsible for their actions? Why are their crap choices always somebody else’s fault?

    Tesla’s build problems and quality control issues were long-documented by Tesla owners and workers well before Musk’s QAnon eruptions. They aren’t just rumors. Musk’s erratic antics that are eroding confidence in his decision-making, alienating customers, and spooking investors are on public display. They aren’t just rumors. And they are all the fault of one man: Elon Musk.

    His fanboys need to stop making excuses and deal with the reality that their guy is Howard Hughes not Nicola Tesla. Other EV innovators and CEOs aren’t having these issues. Musk has made buyers and investors realize that Tesla is not the only EV game in town. Oops.

    9
  40. charon says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    What happened next taught another lesson: MUSK FANS DON’T CARE ABOUT FACTS. I was mobbed by online attacks that could not be dissuaded or mitigated by facts. My claims had evidence and his didn’t, yet hardly anyone knows my reporting and his 2016 lies are still repeated today.

    snip

    As I realized this, and as I realized that Musk and Tesla were on a trajectory toward increasingly implausible and fraudulent claims (which massively enriched Musk), I realized: TESLA IS NOT AN AUTOMOTIVE STORY, IT IS A CELEBRITY STORY. Faith in Musk personally was what mattered

    Musk fans seem much like Johnny Depp’s flying monkeys, if you have been following that story re: Amber Heard.

    6
  41. Jen says:

    @DK:

    Does this include Musk’s stupid, corrosive, and as it turns out self-defeating “sweeping condemnations” of his primary customer base of liberals and Democrats?

    You know, as a communicator this has been a bit of a mental gymnastics piece for me. It seems weird to push away your primary customer base in this way.

    Musk is either irritated that this is his customer base and he’s acting out, or, possibly, he’s trying to increase his customer base by tapping into the MAGA crowd “hey, he thinks like us so his electric cars must be okay” feeling.

    It’s certainly a different marketing strategy.

    4
  42. CSK says:

    @Jen:
    Well, the MAGAs have certainly embraced him for his Twitter stance, but since Joe Biden appears to be anti-fossil fuels, this is going to be a tough call for them.

    1
  43. DK says:

    @grumpy realist: Tesla builds have always been sloppy. It’s not a rumor — Musk admitted this himself last year.

    People ignored it because the Tesla brand was associated with status-chasing and faith in Musk. I’m not making it up. I know plenty of Tesla owners personally, and I know what type of people they are.

    Musk’s current Adventures in Trumpism have dented the brand among Tesla’s main customer base and demonstrated to investors he is not a reliable, rational, responsible thinker.

    And without the brand and trust in the CEO, investors and customers are taking a second look at Tesla and its competitors. And they’re finally seeing what many of us — who want climate change solved and have no connection to the fossil fuel industry — have long said about Tesla from way back when Musk’s politics were irrelevant: the cars are overrated and ridden with design flaws.

    5
  44. Kathy says:

    @OzarkHillbilly:

    This would be a really good time for Boeing or Airbus to buy SpaceX.

    1
  45. DK says:

    @Kathy: If a goal is better quality control and executive leadership, not Boeing lol

    That would be out of the frying pan, into the fire

    4
  46. MarkedMan says:

    @EddieInCA: The company my daughter AP’s for (they make video web content, primarily sports) was (is?) in a WeWork facility. From what I could gather the business model is a) provide co-0p offices with shared receptionist, break room, copiers, etc and get a premium because, b) they also provide a few “cool” things on a shared basis, such as tasty snacks and high end coffee (or at least not Bun Carafe six hour old drip coffee). She mentioned that one floor had a ping pong table . But when their lease came up they were in COVID world in NYC and no one was going into the office. They just needed a place for their servers and some other stuff, since they mostly shoot on location. WeWork offered them a deal to re-sign, but they found they could get adequate space at a fraction of the price elsewhere and so they downsized and moved. Interestingly, they are now in a semi-vicious cycle, where there new space is so crowded with stuff that everyone wants to keep working from home, and they can’t justify more space because no one is going into the office.

    From what I understand, WeWork is structured such that they need that very significant premium, but they have only been able to rent their spaces by discounting down significantly.

  47. CSK says:

    I always wondered how they managed to co-exist in the same zip code, never mind house:

    http://www.nypost.com/2022/05/24/kellyanne-conway-my-husbands-tweets-ruined-our-marriage/

    3
  48. Sleeping Dog says:

    @DK:
    @Jen:

    This morning Krugman tackled this issue more generally; The Perils of Plutocratic Pettiness. The TL/DR is that for decades Silicon Valley tech titans have not only been incredibly rich, but also celebraties whose sh!t doesn’t stink. Public adulation despite bad-boy behavior is tolerated till it isn’t, which is what has happening to Musk and others.

    6
  49. Monala says:

    @EddieInCA: in the early 2000s in Boston, there was a movement among several nonprofits to consolidate under one roof while maintaining their independence. They’d each maintain their own separate 501c3 IRS designations, and their own executive directors, frontline staff and managers. But they’d share all the overhead costs and staff: rent and utilities, reception, custodial care, accounting/payroll, IT, development/ fundraising, administrative assistance, office supplies, etc. The idea wasn’t that different from WeWork, with goals of reducing overhead costs, benefiting from the synergy of other organizations and ideas, while still being independent. I haven’t seen a similar movement where I live now on the West Coast, so I wonder how it’s working out for them.

  50. Mu Yixiao says:

    @Monala:

    There are a number of those in China–but run by German companies. They’re “incubators” for small businesses to get on their feet.

    If I ever win one of those bazillion-dollar lotteries, I’ll do one of those in my small town and help boost the local economy.

    1
  51. Sleeping Dog says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    “incubators”

    A variation on that was tried in smaller communities/counties in the 60’s and 70’s, they were called ‘industrial parks.’ Today they’re mostly marked by faded signs, on weed choked lots on abandoned streets with the odd empty ‘Butler’ building. The space and opportunity isn’t enough, the community needs a core of entrepreneurs and enough employable talent that can foster the businesses growth.

    2
  52. Michael Cain says:

    @Sleeping Dog:

    The space and opportunity isn’t enough, the community needs a core of entrepreneurs and enough employable talent that can foster the businesses growth.

    Yep. An acquaintance who started a business in a tiny town welding custom manifolds for the local oil and gas industry had to relocate to the outer edges of the Front Range urban corridor as soon as the business started growing. The two things he always ticked off on his fingers when he talked about it were, “There weren’t 10 welders living within 40 miles of that tiny town, and there wasn’t the community college where we could send our ambitious welders to get trained and certified when we started working with more exotic alloys.”

    1
  53. wr says:

    @Jen: “I’d be interested in knowing when those deaths occurred.”

    My wife is in England right now. She’s on a tour, she has worn a mask everywhere, and says she’s essentially the only person in the country doing so. Britain simply ended all restrictions and told everyone to let their freak flag fly.

    Don’t know if that’s the reason for excess deaths, but it is the reason that my wife is now stuck in a hotel room with Covid and won’t be able to fly back to the USA on Thursday as scheduled. Right now the only thing she wants to do more than come home is kick Boris Johnson in the balls.

    3
  54. Jen says:

    @wr: Ugh. Well, things are going to get interesting quickly, given the fact that they are about to have what amounts to a four-day-long national street party for the Jubilee. Covid numbers will look interesting after that, I fear.

    2
  55. wr says:

    @Kathy: “This would be a really good time for Boeing or Airbus to buy SpaceX.”

    Well, maybe if Boeing could stop spending all their money on lawsuits based on the damage done by their crappy planes…

    1
  56. Mu Yixiao says:

    @Sleeping Dog:

    A variation on that was tried in smaller communities/counties in the 60’s and 70’s, they were called ‘industrial parks.’ Today they’re mostly marked by faded signs, on weed choked lots on abandoned streets with the odd empty ‘Butler’ building. The space and opportunity isn’t enough, the community needs a core of entrepreneurs and enough employable talent that can foster the businesses growth.

    Gee… that’s funny. We have an industrial park in our town of 3,000. It’s home to 2 manufacturing plants with international clients. One is a top pharmaceutical manufacturer (they do the “making” not the R&D) who has doubled their employee base (adding over 100 jobs in the past two years), the makes industrial smokehouses that are sold all over the world. Additionally there are several small companies that have been around for years.

    All the small towns around here have industrial parks. And they’re not full of empty lots. They’ve got lots of thriving small businesses in them. Welding and paint shop, prototypers, commercial testing facilities, automotive shops, cabinetry shops…. hell, you’ll even find some real enterprising folx opening small sandwich shops in the middle of all those, and doing a great lunch business.

    But an industrial park is not the same as an incubator. An incubator supplies all the overhead as part of the rental on a space. And the target isn’t manufacturing these days, it’s software development, architectural groups, design groups, etc.

    The Pharma plant located here specifically because it’s a small town, but is 30 miles from the University of Wisconsin, and the the local tech school. The company I work for opened its expansion plant in a small town of 1,700. They’re doing quite well–because they can draw from both Madison, and all the small towns around.

    They may not be working in your neck of the woods, but around here, they’re doing quite well.

    1
  57. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @CSK: True enough. Still, I would note that it’s her husband’s tweets not the fact that she had hired on as a paid liar for an autocratic buffoon that had “ruined her marriage.” Paging the world’s tiniest violinist to play the world’s saddest song…

    8
  58. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Mu Yixiao: You’re very lucky. Our industrial park in Ellensburg, WA (home of Central Washington University and population ~7000) didn’t fare as well and languished empty for 3 years before it was finally sold to make room for student apartments. But yeah, it’s a great idea when it works.

    2
  59. CSK says:

    @Just nutha ignint cracker:
    Very true. And I’m not sorry for her in the least.

    I do wonder, though, how the two of them managed to occupy the same house for so long without it becoming an outright war zone.

    1
  60. Mister Bluster says:

    May 24, 2022 4:02 PM ET
    NPR is reporting two confirmed dead in Uvalde, Texas elementary school shooting.

  61. Scott says:

    @Mister Bluster: Two children

  62. Scott says:

    @Scott: 2 killed, several wounded in shooting at Uvalde elementary school, active shooter in custody, officials say

    Two children were killed, several were wounded, including an adult following a shooting Tuesday at an Uvalde elementary school, officials said.

    According to a Facebook post from Uvalde Memorial Hospital, two students were brought in dead on arrival. They also said several students are being treated in the emergency room.

  63. gVOR08 says:

    We may have found a Russian Maverick. Retired Major General Kanamat Botashev is reported killed in an SU-25 in Ukraine. As to why a retired general was flying combat, the only answer seems to be, “He just couldn’t stay on the sidelines.” He was retired after crashing an SU-27 he didn’t have authorization to fly. Cue the Hunt for Red October, “You’ve lost another general?!”

    1
  64. CSK says:

    @Scott:
    According to some reports, the shooter is also dead.

  65. Mister Bluster says:

    @Scott:..Two children.

    Yes. The first report that I heard on the radio did not make that clear so I posted what I knew. I have since seen reports that the dead are children. Apparently they were dead on arrival at the hospital. I am also hearing that there are 12 or 13 injured from the shooting at the hospital. The killer is in custody.

  66. Mister Bluster says:

    Secret News
    George Carlin

    2
  67. Just nutha ignint cracker says:

    @Mu Yixiao:

    The Pharma plant located here specifically because it’s a small town, but is 30 miles from the University of Wisconsin, and the the local tech school. The company I work for opened its expansion plant in a small town of 1,700. They’re doing quite well–because they can draw from both Madison, and all the small towns around.

    Of course, I’m not sure I would call where you live “a small town.” In the area where I live, we call places like the one you describe above “bedroom communities of, in this case, Madison, Wisconsin.” But you can certainly think whatever you wish to about where you live.

    2
  68. dazedandconfused says:

    @gVOR08:

    Nearly every fighter-jet-flyboy-made-desk-jockey I’ve ever met would crawl a mile over busted glass on his lips to get back in the seat again. It’s a addiction.

    1
  69. Kathy says:

    @DK:
    @wr:

    What I’d love to see is an outside review of SpaceX’s finances and cost structures.

    1
  70. Scott says:

    @Mister Bluster: Shooter was a high school student. He is now dead.

  71. EddieInCA says:

    Fvck…

    14 kids dead and a teacher….. so far.

    https://www.rawstory.com/uvalde-elementary-school-shooting/

    Following a shooting Tuesday at an Uvalde elementary school in Texas, Gov. Greg Abbott said that 14 students and a teacher had been killed.

  72. gVOR08 says:

    @Mister Bluster: Gov Abbott has said fourteen students, a teacher, and the 18 year old shooter dead. Gawd I’m hoping this is incorrect.

  73. Mister Bluster says:

    HEY! HEY! NRA! HOW MANY KIDS DID YOU KILL TODAY?

    4
  74. Scott says:

    @gVOR08: That’s what’s on the local news here in San Antonio.

  75. CSK says:

    @EddieInCA:
    The reports are conflicting…the headlines on some news sites sat 14 children killed, but then the articles beneath say two children.

    The shooter, an 18-year-old male, may or may not be dead.

    Anyway, it’s awful.

  76. senyordave says:

    Kellyanne Conway’s peddling a book:
    Kellyanne Conway says in book Trump lost the 2020 election, but ‘supplicant after sycophant after showman’ tried to convince him otherwise
    As horrible as Trump and his people are, there is something about here that almost transcends being a bad person. I could imagine her in nazi Germany fitting in perfectly in some propaganda capacity.
    She says her marriage to George Conway may not survive his disdain for Trump. I wonder how it survived her persona.

    1
  77. senyordave says:

    @CSK: Houston and Austin newspaper websites are reporting deaths of 14 children, one teacher.

  78. Scott says:

    @CSK: Constantly being updated. Shooter was local, a high school student, a citizen. Apparently shot his grandmother, then went to the school. 14 children, 1 teacher are dead. 10 year old and 66 year old in critical condition. Several others being treated in emergency room. Police press conference going on now.

  79. CSK says:

    @Scott:
    Thanks; I just saw that. Salvador Ramos was the shooter.

    This is beginning to sound like Sandy Hook. Didn’t Adam Lanza kill his mother before he massacred the kids and the teachers at that elementary school?

  80. Scott says:

    @Scott: BTW, the school was a 2nd through 4th grade school. About 600 students. Uvalde is about 80 miles west of San Antonio, about 16,000 people, and primarily agricultural. Since school ends Friday, I suspect that’s it for the year. Another suck year for the local high school graduates.

  81. Flat Earth Luddite says:

    @Mister Bluster:
    Uh, yeah. I had the tune stuck in my head before I got to the end of your comment. First time I’d heard it in over five decades.

    https://www.flickr.com/photos/washington_area_spark/48626500881/

    I’m so damned tired of this. Heartbroken and tired. And really really feeling my age.

  82. Jax says:

    Wonder where de Stijl is? Didn’t he say he had Covid last time he checked in?

    1
  83. Mikey says:

    Words fail.

    Philip Bump
    @pbump
    State senator briefed by Texas Rangers and speaking on CNN says the death toll is now at 18 children.

  84. CSK says:

    @Mikey:
    Eighteen children and three adults.

    Beyond awful.

    1
  85. Kathy says:

    So, when the gun fetishists at the NRA and GQP say their sending thoughts and prayers to the latest victims of their obsession, what do they pray for? More mass shootings?

    2
  86. Mister Bluster says:

    @Flat Earth Luddite:..First time I’d heard it in over five decades.

    Echoes of the past.
    Won’t be long and schoolchildren will be chanting “Hell No. We won’t go!” because they want to stay alive.

    3
  87. Beth says:

    @Jax:

    I was wondering the same thing.

    1
  88. Mister Bluster says:

    @Kathy:..what do they pray for? More mass shootings?
    The only plea that I have know the NRA to make on this matter is to demand that doctors “stay in their lane” when physicians presented “its public health approach to reducing deaths and injuries from firearms.”
    The supporters of the Second Amendment were all about repressing the speech of the doctors. You know “screw the First Amendment”.

    After NRA Mocks Doctors, Physicians Reply: ‘This Is Our Lane’
    “Do you have any idea how many bullets I pull out of corpses weekly? This isn’t just my lane. It’s my f****** highway,”

    Trigger warning! Blood.

    3
  89. CSK says:

    There have been 27 school shootings so far this year.

  90. Drew says:

    So Joe Biden took about one minute thirty seconds before politicizing this event for a political point.

    What an immoral, just grotesque, shell of a human being. Unfit for leadership.

  91. Thomm says:

    @Drew: you’re right. He should have gone down there for a photo op giving the thumbs up next to a family member of a victim. Cry about it neo-confederate.

    11
  92. Jax says:

    @Drew: Yeah, it’s really terrible he wasn’t down there giving the thumbs up with parents who just lost their kid in a school shooting. Christ, you’re an awful person.

    3
  93. gVOR08 says:

    @Kathy:

    So, when the gun fetishists at the NRA and GQP say their sending thoughts and prayers to the latest victims of their obsession, what do they pray for? More mass shootings?

    Yes. Gun sales spike after each of these horrors.

    1
  94. Dutchgirl says:

    As a parent of an elementary aged kid, this made me shake with anger.

    2
  95. Gustopher says:

    @Drew:

    So Joe Biden took about one minute thirty seconds before politicizing this event for a political point.

    What does “politicizing” a mass shooting entail? Does it involve saying that maybe we shouldn’t have so many?

    I mean, we know that political policies have led to this — it’s not some grand, unthinkable tragedy, it’s basically Tuesday in America. Slightly worse than the usual Tuesday in America, but far from unthinkable. Buffalo was how many days ago? And the Thai Church?

    The Tree of Liberty has been watered with the blood of so many innocents lately that I think we have to be concerned with root rot.

    4
  96. Jax says:

    @Drew: I would really like for you to explain to me, and all the other parents out there, why your 2nd Amendment rights are more important than our right to send our children to school safely.

    Go ahead. Make it make sense. You came back on this site to voice your opinion, let’s have it.

    4
  97. gVOR08 says:

    Looks like @Drew: was echoing Glenn Greenwald on Tucker Carlson’s show.

    2
  98. Jax says:

    @gVOR08: Makes sense. He’s got to parrot something.

  99. Gustopher says:

    @Jax: Has anyone shot up a rural white school in Real America (TM) yet? Or how about a fancy private prep school filled with the kids of CEOs? I can honestly not keep track of these things, but generally the simple answer is that these people don’t think anything is a problem until it affects them directly.

    If it hurts other people, well that’s just a price to be paid.

    But perhaps our friend Drew has found other talking points that are more charitable to his ilk.

    3
  100. Mister Bluster says:

    Has anyone shot up a rural white school in Real America (TM) yet?

    School?
    How about a rural white church in Sutherland Springs, Texas?

    The Sutherland Springs church shooting occurred on November 5, 2017, when Devin Patrick Kelley of New Braunfels, Texas perpetrated a mass shooting at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas. Kelley killed 26 people, including an unborn child, wounded 22 others, and killed himself.
    WikiP

    1
  101. Mister Bluster says:

    Has anyone shot up a rural white school in Real America (TM) yet?
    School?
    How about a rural white church in Sutherland Springs, Texas?

    The Sutherland Springs church shooting occurred on November 5, 2017, when Devin Patrick Kelley of New Braunfels, Texas perpetrated a mass shooting at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas. Kelley killed 26 people, including an unborn child, wounded 22 others, and killed himself.
    WikiP

  102. DK says:

    @Drew: So about 30 seconds longer than it took you phony Rethuglikkklan hypocrites to “politicize” Benghazi.

    Thank you Biden and Americans across the country for refusing political correctness, ignoring GQP fake outrage, and reminding Republicans and their voters that they are selfish child killing gun nuts with blood on their hands. A hit dog will holler.

    3
  103. Mikey says:

    @Drew: Oh, fuck this bullshit. You gun-humping shills for mass murder always trot out this tired garbage every time someone shoots up a school or a store or a church or…or…or. For you there is never a “right time” to state the entirely obvious: you and the rest of the GOP believe 19 dead elementary school kids is a necessity to maintain your “right” to military-grade surrogate penises.

    4
  104. wr says:

    @Drew: “What an immoral, just grotesque, shell of a human being.”

    Wow — you finally looked in the mirror.