Slashdot featured this article from Nature: WHO abandons plans for crucial second phase of COVID-origins investigation. You have to do some between-the-lines reading to figure out why, but…
But Chinese officials rejected the WHO’s plans, taking particular issue with the proposal to investigate lab breaches. Zhao Lijian, the spokesperson for China’s foreign ministry, said the WHO proposal was not agreed by all member states, and that the second phase should not focus on pathways the mission report had already deemed extremely unlikely.
"We have nothing to hide, but we won't let you look there."
I think David Harsanyi is kind of impressed: James Clapper Can't Stop Lying.
In an interview with The Washington Post’s “fact checker,” former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper contends that Politico misled the public about a letter he and 50 other former intel officials signed during the 2020 presidential campaign warning that the New York Post’s Hunter Biden laptop story could be Russian deception. “There was message distortion,” Clapper tells The Washington Post. “All we were doing was raising a yellow flag that this could be Russian disinformation. Politico deliberately distorted what we said. It was clear in paragraph five.”
It was not clear, at all. The purpose of the letter, apparent then as it is now, was to discredit the Post’s scoop and provide Democrats and the media with ammunition to reject it. Of course intel officials couldn’t definitively say that Hunter’s emails, which implicated Joe Biden as a business partner, were concocted by Putin’s spooks. They had no access to the laptop. The purpose was to enlist former intel chiefs to cast doubt on the story. A perfunctory CYA paragraph doesn’t change anything.
Clapper is merely the one example of how dishonest, corrupt, and inept the "national intelligence community" is. I'd vote for whatever candidate pledged to clean those Augean Stables.
Lawrence M. Krauss attempts a taxonomy of the self-described enlightened: To Woke or Not to Woke, That is the Question. Is the answer Fundamentalist Wokism?.
As far as I can tell, the term ‘woke’ is meant to describe, in a positive sense, being aware of various systematic historical examples of inequality and their sometimes ongoing negative consequences. Take for example, one legacy of racism in US cities in particular. Historical inequalities in the access to wealth and other resources has tended to result in areas where poverty and lack of health and social services have been concentrated. Recognizing the existence of these situations is presumably a necessary first step in trying to explore ways to improve the quality of life for everyone—a laudable goal.
The problem arises when this recognition becomes the sole filter in which to define all aspects of existence, so that every experience reflects inherent inequities and that victimhood becomes endemic. That historical racism has existed in society does not mean that it exists everywhere nor that every example of apparent ongoing inequity can be attributed to that history. An equitable society needs to provide equal opportunities to succeed, and that means providing access to education, health care, and a safe physical environment for all children. It does not, however, mean that the demographics of centers of excellence, be they academic institutions or sports teams, needs to reflect the underlying demographics of society.
I'm not sure how his prescription, adding the "fundamentalist" adjective, differs significantly to the insights of John McWhorter; see especially IT IS JUST HYPE TO CALL ELECTISM A RELIGION?
Rich Lowry proposes a title what could be a cinematic blockbuster someday: Biden vs. the UFOs. (Ending still—heh—up in the air.)
It’s best never to take White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre’s word for anything, but we can presumably believe her when she says that the flying objects shot down by the United States in recent days aren’t from an alien civilization.
Although she left herself some wiggle room — “there is no indication” of extraterrestrial activity, she said, displaying the weasel-word instincts of someone whose job involves dancing around the truth.
"That is something that I would refer you to the White House counsel's office."
Physics Prof at the University Near Here, Chanda Prescod-Weinstein declares herself Against a Milquetoast Politics of Integration. It's a Valentine's Day brain dump, bouncing from the latest environmental disaster in Ohio, to the Space Force installation in Maui, to… well check it out. Excerpt:
I’m a Black queer Jewish agender/woman worker in the Black and queer radical feminist tradition, and that means I won’t settle for a milquetoast politics of integration into American imperialism and ecological destruction. It means I stand with Palestinians, and I generally think borders are violent. I may have tactical disagreements with other people working in the same tradition, but I ultimately share their goals. I’m not interested in being represented by people who share my community identities but whose politics run counter to our survival. And I’m disgusted by the way establishment queers are policing queerness by making political agreement with them a requirement to be understood and recognized as queer.
Anyway, Happy Black History Month except to all the white moderates and the people who cape for them…