Friday, June 30, 2023

'Is NASA Mining Asteroids?' No, but it's studying them for Asteroid Day 2023

Happy International Asteroid Day, the younger but paradoxically more established version of Apophis Day! I'm celebrating by revisiting NASA's asteroid missions for Asteroid Day 2022 beginning with mentions of the Psyche and OSIRIS-REx missions as NASA asks and answers Is NASA Mining Asteroids? We Asked a NASA Expert.

Is NASA mining asteroids? No, we’re not in the business of mining asteroids but we do love to study them.

This year, our #PsycheMission launches to a unique metal-rich asteroid to study what appears to be the exposed nickel-iron core of an early planet, one of the building blocks of our solar system. However, the science we gain from missions like this could one day benefit future humans in cosmic mining and resource endeavors.

And in September, our OSIRIS-REx mission will deliver an asteroid sample back to Earth.
Speaking of OSIRIS-REx, SciShow Space examined its sample collection and future return in The Asteroid That Nearly Swallowed OSIRIS-Rex.

It's always an asteroid heading straight toward us that we worry about, never what happens to us when we head straight toward the asteroid. OSIRIS-REx's experience with Bennu tells us it's worth a thought.
OSIRIS-REx almost sinking into Bennu reminds me that it's the unexpected results that are most interesting. May we get more unexpected results when its sample returns to Earth on September 24, 2023.

Follow over the jump for updates on DART and Lucy, the other missions I covered last year, plus a bonus song.

Thursday, June 29, 2023

CBS Detroit reports 'Michigan could become a climate safe haven'

It didn't take long for me to revisit CityNerd lists 'Ten Lovely Cities You Can Migrate To and (Maybe) Survive Climate Havoc' as CBS Detroit uploaded Michigan could become a climate safe haven today.

As the effects of climate change become harder to ignore, there's not a place on the planet that won't feel an impact.
I was a little disappointed that CityNerd didn't include cities in Michigan among his list of climate havens, so I'm glad to see this video. I'm even more glad because the example of Ari Biswas and his family fit what I wrote in January: "I expect more of the early wave of migrants will be those already familiar with Michigan. If so, welcome back! Michigan missed you!"

In addition, Dr. Jonathan Overpeck mentioned a story I tell my students about the Great Lakes Compact, which forbids exporting water out of the Great Lakes watershed in containers larger than five gallons. In fact, I just told my students about it today. I'm just surprised I never wrote about it here until now.

I'm sure I'll have more to write about this trend. In the meantime, stay tuned for Asteroid Day, Canada Day, World UFO Day, and 4th of Julyholidays galore to end June and begin July!

Wednesday, June 28, 2023

Celebrate Paul Bunyan Day with National Day Calendar, 8SA, and News Center Maine

Happy Paul Bunyan Day! I'm observing the with two videos, beginning with National Day Calendar's National Paul Bunyan Day | June 28.

Described as a giant and a lumberjack of unusual skill, Paul Bunyan is one of the most famous North American folklore heroes. In the tales, Paul Bunyan was almost always accompanied by his companion, Babe the Blue Ox.
8SA has more in What is Paul Bunyan Day (June 28) - Activities and Why We Love and Celebrate Paul Bunyan Day.

I'm glad that the video mentioned Michigan's role in the Paul Bunyan legend, as my adopted home state is where Paul Bunyan first appeared in print, although the legend itself says that the character was born in Maine. News Center Maine made that the focus of It's National Paul Bunyan Day!

Bangor Historical Society Curator Matt Bishop told NEWS CENTER Maine Bunyan has deep ties to Maine's logging history.
Oh, my, Bangor created a birth certificate for Paul Bunyan. That's going the extra mile to support the legend.

Once again, happy Paul Bunyan Day!

Tuesday, June 27, 2023

CityNerd lists 'Ten Lovely Cities You Can Migrate To and (Maybe) Survive Climate Havoc'

I found a new take on 'How Climate Change Will Reshape Where Americans Live' from CityNerd, who listed Ten Lovely Cities You Can Migrate To and (Maybe) Survive Climate Havoc.

Since I started making videos about affordable walkability and underrated urbanism, I've gotten several requests to do something specifically around small and mid-sized cities. Well, this video isn't EXACTLY that, but it's adjacent!

It turns out, if my brazen misapplication of the EPA's Climate Resilience Screening Index is to be believed, small and mid-sized cities are going to be pretty good performers under trying climate conditions. So, if you were to pack up all your stuff and move to a place that had the least risk / most resilience, and was STILL a legitimate city, what city would it be? Well, this video has ten ideas for you. Ignore them at your peril!
This is an entirely different list of climate havens than I've shared before. I'm a little disappointed that it doesn't include cities in Michigan, although it does include Duluth, Minnesota, so the Great Lakes have a destination. I'm a bit surprised at all the locations in the western interior. So were a lot of the viewers, who pointed out the potential issues with water supply for a lot of these towns. It turns out that a lot of the small cities have adequate water, at least for now. Just the same, many of those cities are places I might like to retire to for reasons having more to do with the present climate than the future climate. That they would be good places to live in the future would be a bonus.

This concludes today's look at how to survive climate change. Stay tuned for Paul Bunyan Day.

Monday, June 26, 2023

Vox warns 'A desert fungus that infects humans is spreading'

I'm in the middle of teaching about fungus, so I found it fortuitous that Vox uploaded A desert fungus that infects humans is spreading on Saturday.

... And scientists don't fully understand why.
Out of the millions of fungal species in the world, only a few hundred can make people sick. Coccidioides is one of them — and it lives in desert dust. Microscopic spores are kicked up when the ground is disturbed; if inhaled, they can cause an infection known as Valley fever. Most people recover without ever knowing they had it, but others will experience far more intense symptoms, ranging from pneumonia to meningitis. Coccidioides is also really good at eating … meat.

Fortunately, this fungus is typically only found in the southwestern US, parts of Mexico, and Central and South America — and cases are rare. But unfortunately, that range is expanding quickly. Scientists are racing to understand exactly why, because even though this fungus has existed for millennia, there are still tons of unanswered questions about how it lives both in the desert and in people.
I'm about to lecture on fungal diseases of humans, so the timing of this video is perfect. Here's to showing it to my students this week.

Sunday, June 25, 2023

More Perfect Union explains 'Why Actors Are Shutting Down Hollywood'

For today's Sunday entertainment feature, I'm featuring SAG-AFTRA, who have authorized a strike. Watch More Perfect Union explaining Why Actors Are Shutting Down Hollywood.

Hollywood actors could join writers on strike on July 1 and shut down the TV and film industry.

Streaming has broken the industry. Successful actors are working second jobs. Some received $0 in residuals from Netflix shows with millions of viewers. And many have no health insurance.

That’s why 98% of union SAG-AFTRA actors have voted to authorize a strike.
Here's to SAG-AFTRA, the WGA, and the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers (AMPTP) reaching agreements that all of them can live with. Otherwise, there will be two strikes in Hollywood next month. As I wrote in Vox explains 'How streaming caused the TV writers strike', "We viewers should care more about the people who create what we watch...We don't want the executives to accidentally kill the geese that lay the golden eggs."

Saturday, June 24, 2023

Randy Rainbow sings 'Donald in the John With Boxes'

I asked my readers "How about Randy Rainbow tomorrow?" Then I saw that Randy had just uploaded Donald in the John With Boxes - A Randy Rainbow Song Parody — perfect timing!

Parody of “Lucy in the Sky With Diamonds” by John Lennon and Paul McCartney

Parody lyrics by Randy Rainbow
Song Produced, Orchestrated, Mixed, Mastered by Michael J Moritz Jr
Arrangement by Brett Boles
Vocals: Randy Rainbow
Piano, Organ, Synths: Michael J Moritz Jr
Drums: Michael D’Angelo
Guitar: Engineer - Jakob Reinhardt
That's the perfect sequel to Randy singing Grumpy Trumpy Felon from Jamaica in Queens! - A Randy Rainbow Song Parody in Randy Rainbow sings about Trump's indictment while Seth Meyers takes a closer look as well as a comedy follow-up to the more serious LegalEagle explains 'Trump's Bombshell Federal Document Indictment'. It also unintentionally (?) celebrates Global Beatles Day early and National Pink Day right on time. So much for being done with holidays!

For an encore, I present Randy Rainbow for President! (2023-2024 Tour Announcement).

Randy Rainbow, the 21st Century Pat Paulsen, just more musical.

That's it for today's send-up of Donald Trump. Stay tuned for the Sunday entertainment feature, as if Randy weren't entertaining enough.

Friday, June 23, 2023

Michigan celebrates the third Detroit-Style Pizza Day

Happy National Detroit-Style Pizza Day! I begin with WNEM in Saginaw, Flint, Midland, and Bay City's Friday is National Detroit-Style Pizza Day!

WNEM's website has the story.
Celebrate one of Detroit’s greatest contributions on Friday, June 23. It is National Detroit-Style Pizza Day, recognizing the iconic square-cut pizza.

The Detroit-style pizza, born in the birthplace of the American car and Motown, was first served at Buddy’s Pizza in 1946.

A good Detroit-style pizza has a deep and thick crust that’s also light and airy. If you really want authentic Detroit-style pizza, it’s made by layering the toppings first, then layer with cheese and finish it off with tomato sauce on top.

The pizza has grown in popularity over the past few years. You can find Detroit-style pizza from Brooklyn to Denver to Los Angeles.
I will pass along the discount code in the video to my wife in case we order tonight. Buddy's may be the original, but we've learned to love Jet's.

Buddy's is one of the stars of WDIV/Click On Detroit's A taste of history: How the Detroit-style pizza came to be, but Jet's makes a cameo.

On this National Detroit-Style Pizza Day, we're diving into the history of the square pie and how it came to be such a huge success in Michigan and beyond.
Both Karen Dybis, the author of "Detroit Style Pizza: A Doughtown History," and Wes Pikula, Chief Brand Officer of Buddy's Pizza, appear again in CBS Detroit's Celebrating the history of Detroit-style pizza.

Friday marks National Detroit-Style Pizza Day, a holiday founded by Buddy's in 2021 to celebrate its 75th anniversary.
I found both segments worth watching, WDIV's for the on-location interviews and CBS Detroit's for the more in-depth responses from the two guests. They complemented each other and added more depth to the story.

I return to WDIV/Click On Detroit's studio for Detroit-Style Pizza Bracket winner: We're taste testing some of the best.

It's National Detroit-Style Pizza Day! We're talking about the delicious pizza style -- and trying a few slices, too.
Something clicked for me after watching this segment about Shield's. My colleagues who lived in Southfield raved about the place, but they never conveyed its place in the history of Detroit-style pizza. WDIV/Click On Detroit and CBS Detroit did. As I've written many times before, it's always a good day when I learn something new.

This concludes my celebration of ten consecutive holidays. Stay tuned for some non-holiday posts. How about Randy Rainbow tomorrow?

Thursday, June 22, 2023

Celebrating World Rainforest Day with 8SA and PBS Terra

Happy World Rainforest Day! 8SA just uploaded Celebrate World Rainforest Day, Preserving Our Planet's Lungs, so I'm sharing it with my readers to begin today's observance.

Join us in honoring World Rainforest Day, a global initiative to raise awareness about the importance of rainforests and their vital role in sustaining life on Earth. In this video, we delve into the mesmerizing beauty and incredible biodiversity of rainforests, highlighting their significance as the lungs of our planet. Discover fascinating facts about rainforest ecosystems, the threats they face, and the urgent need for conservation efforts. Let's come together to protect these precious habitats and ensure a sustainable future for generations to come. Happy World Rainforest Day!
Like most tributes to today, this video concentrates on tropical rainforests like the Amazon rainforest. I feature other parts of the Neotropical rainforest in Selva Verde: The Green Jungle, which I show to my students. Here, I concentrate on the other rainforest biome, the temperate rainforest of the Pacific Northwest, because I think it deserves more attention. To that end, I'm sharing Inside the Fight to Save an Ancient Forest (and the Secrets it Holds) | Overview from PBS Terra.

The ancient forests of the Pacific Northwest are home to giant trees and many secrets, which science is just beginning to understand. But these forests are at risk of disappearing. In British Columbia on First Nation territory, a small band of forest defenders are risking life and liberty to protect some of the last remaining ancient forests.
I also lecture about temperate rainforests, using them as examples of very complex ecosystems with high biodiversity. This video shows just how complex, so I might add it to my lecture.

I close by revisiting what I wrote about the holiday last year.
Here's to hoping I write its own post next year, an odd-numbered year, which have been the years I actually give the day my undivided attention. I also hope National Day Calendar fixes their image by then.
I did as I promised and National Day Calendar did as I hoped. Here's this year's image.

Good job. Now stay tuned as I complete celebrating a string of ten consecutive holidays with Detroit-style Pizza Day tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 21, 2023

National Seashell Day and World Giraffe Day on the Summer Solstice

Happy World Giraffe Day, National Seashell Day, and Summer Solstice! I'm shuffling the order this year because National Day Calendar just uploaded National Seashell Day | First Day of Summer.

On the first day of summer, National Seashell Day reminds us to put our toes in the sand and admire the beauty of seashells.

Shellers get ready to shellebrate and start shelling! To those not in the know, shellers are beachcombers who collect seashells by scouring the beaches for the gems left behind by snails and mollusks. National Seashell Day is here to tell you all about it and make sure you check out your local beaches during the prime shelling season.
I have been hoping that National Day Calendar makes this video for years, so I'm putting it first to celebrate getting my wish.

Next, 8SA described World Giraffe Day (June 21) - Activities and How to Celebrate World Giraffe Day two years ago, but I'm finally uploading it now.

JUNE 21ST is quickly approaching. It a very important day. Not only is it Father’s Day, it is also the 2nd Annual World Giraffe Day. World Giraffe Day was started by the Giraffe Conservation Foundation to celebrate and raise awareness about giraffes in the wild.
The woman behind the 8SA account was off by a couple of years; Father's Day, the Summer Solstice, and World Giraffe Day fell on the same day in 2020. She normally does great research, but she occasionally makes mistakes like this, which causes them to stand out among the otherwise great attention to detail. Even so, I recommend the video.

I'm skipping the science of the solstice today to concentrate on the day's social meaning with Voice of America reporting Seattle Marks Summer Solstice With Whimsical Parade.

June 21 marks the longest day of the year in the Northern Hemisphere – in Seattle, Washington, the summer solstice was celebrated this past weekend with the annual Fremont Solstice Parade. Natasha Mozgovaya has more.
I couldn't resist a parade, especially one that reminds me of the Marche du Nain Rouge. I told myself that I should start writing about it again last year, but forgot to this year. Maybe next year.

Stay tuned for World Rainforest Day and Detroit-style Pizza Day as I continue my holiday posts.

Tuesday, June 20, 2023

Celebrate American Eagle Day with an ice cream soda

Happy American Eagle Day! I begin today's celebration with National Day Calendar's National American Eagle Day on June 20.

Each year on June 20th, National American Eagle Day honors our national symbol, raising awareness for protecting the Bald Eagle. The day also encourages the recovery of their natural environments while providing educational outreach.
That's a history of the day minus only that the American Eagle Association sponsors it, which National Day Calendar mentions on its website. For more about the bird itself, I turn to Animalogic's Bald Eagle: America’s Fursona, a title that I think is too cute by half.

With long, sharp talons, a massive wingspan, and a regal white head, this is one of the most majestic birds in the world. This is the Bald Eagle.
This video shows why I subscribed to Animalogic on YouTube and why I plan on using the channel's video about wombats for Souther on July 9th.

Today is also National Ice Cream Soda Day. Take it away, 8sa!

National Ice Cream Soda Day (June 20) - Activities and How to Celebrate National Ice Cream Soda Day

National Ice Cream Soda Day is celebrated annually on June 20th. This day is certainly loved and celebrated by many people across the globe, ...
Not only is the wombat the animal mascot of Souther, but ice cream is its food — yet more foreshadowing!

That's it for today's celebrations, but stay tuned for World Giraffe Day, National Seashell Day, the Summer Solstice, World Rainforest Day and Detroit-style Pizza Day as I continue my holiday celebrations.

Monday, June 19, 2023

TED-Ed asks 'What is Juneteenth, and why is it important?'

Happy Juneteenth! I begin today's observance with a serious question, as TED-Ed asks What is Juneteenth, and why is it important? - Karlos K. Hill and Soraya Field Fiorio.

Get to know the history of Juneteenth, a commemoration of the end of slavery in the United States after the Civil War.
At the end of the Civil War, though slavery was technically illegal in all states, it still persisted in the last bastions of the Confederacy. This was the case when Union General Gordon Granger marched his troops into Galveston, Texas on June 19th and announced that all enslaved people there were officially free. Karlos K. Hill and Soraya Field Fiorio dig into the history of Juneteenth.

Lesson by Karlos K. Hill and Soraya Field Fiorio, directed by Rémi Cans, Atypicalist.
That's the very serious history. MSNBC shows how Americans celebrate Juneteenth across U.S..

Americans are celebrating Juneteenth, marking the day in 1865 enslaved people in Galveston, Texas found out they had been freed. NBC News’ Marissa Parra reports from Georgetown, where parades and events are underway.
That's more fun. Speaking of fun, follow over the jump for music and a drink to celebrate the holiday.

Sunday, June 18, 2023

The 'Mother of Father's Day' plus 2022 was a great year for 'Star Wars' names

Happy Father's Day! For today's celebration, I'm revisiting the themes of two previous observances, beginning with the history of Father's Day, which I last examined in 2020, from History of Father's Day: Founded in Spokane by KREM 2 News.

Father's Day originated in Spokane in 1910. Here's more about the woman behind it and how it became a national holiday.
Thank you, Sonora Louise Smart Dodd, for thinking of Father's Day and doing the work to make it a national holiday.

Follow over the jump for a follow-up to the Star Wars part of Kylo passes Anakin while Arya and Khaleesi fall in popularity, baby names from entertainment for the Father's Day weekend, which qualifies this entry as the Sunday entertainment feature.

Saturday, June 17, 2023

By reader request, it's World Crocodile Day!

I asked my readers a question yesterday.
I would like to know what they want me to blog about tomorrow. I am very tempted to continue this streak of writing about holidays through World Giraffe Day and National Seashell Day on the Summer Solstice. Tomorrow's choices are World Croc Day, World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought, and Global Garbage Man Day, all of which have environmental themes, or something environmental not associated with any of tomorrow's special days, like climate change and biodiversity. What do you think?
I got one response on the blog's Facebook page for World Croc Day, so take it away National Day Calendar!

Every year on June 17th, World Croc Day highlights the plight of endangered crocodiles. The day also encourages learning more about these amazing reptiles.
Crocodiles are easily confused with alligators. There are some differences between the two, however. The primary difference is the shape of their snout. The crocodile’s snout forms a long, pointed V-lie shape. Alligators’ snouts, on the other hand, are more rounded and u-shaped. In addition, crocodiles are usually much larger than alligators. The average alligator weighs about 500 pounds. Crocodiles can reach up to 2,200 pounds! This reptile is also much more aggressive than alligators, which makes them more dangerous.

Crocodiles can be found in nearly every corner of the world. These reptiles are native to both the North and South American continents. They are also found in Africa, Australia, and Asia, but the Florida Everglades is the only place in the world where crocodiles and alligators live together.
I double-checked this distribution fact and found it to be true. The only other place it could happen is along the northernmost stretch of the Mexican Gulf Coast, but there appears to be no overlap between American Alligators and Morelet's Crocodiles there.

Back to National Day Calendar.
There are lots more to learn about crocs, too!
  • Of all the animals in the world, the crocodile’s bite is the strongest.
  • There are 15 different species of crocodiles.
  • Crocodiles can live in both freshwater and saltwater.
  • They eat fish, birds, and other animals.
  • Crocodiles can live to be 100, with the oldest crocodile in the world reaching 140.
  • There is a concern that some species of reptiles are on their way to extinction. Human activity is the primary reason for this. Hunting, pollution, and destroyed habitats are a few reasons crocodiles are endangered.
Every year zoos around the world participate in World Croc Day. The largest event is held at The Belize Zoo and Tropical Education Center. Events at the zoo include “croc talks,” crocodile exhibits, face painting, arts & crafts, cool croc encounters, educational seminars, and photo ops.
I found two videos from United States zoos and animal parks celebrating World Croc(odile) Day and both feature feeding time. The first shows the Memphis Zoo celebrating World Crocodile Day.

To celebrate World Crocodile Day, we are taking you behind-the-scenes on the thrilling feedings of our Nile Crocodiles, including Skebanga, the largest Nile Crocodile in North America. You can see them get fed every Saturday at 12:30 PM in Zambezi!
Seeing the crocodiles lunge out of the water is pretty sensational and demonstrates the animal's power.

Speaking of sensational, Gatorland in Orlando has its own video celebrating WORLD CROC DAY w/LYLE the NILE CROCODILE & OMARGOSHTV!

Today we are celebrating World Croc Day with the biggest Nile Crocodile at Gatorland! Lyle the Nile Crocodile with a little help from our good friends at OmargoshTV! Get ready for some gigantic Nile Crocodile Crunchiness!
One can see the contrast in snout shape between Lyle the Nile Crocodile and the American Aliigators that share his habitat. One can also hear and see the difference in tone between the Memphis Zoo, a public institution dedicated to education and conservation, and Gatorland, a privately owned theme park, which has entertainment at least as high a priority as education and conservation. Still, watching this video made me interested in visiting, which means it's a success.

By the way, Tengrain at Mock, Paper, Scissors is observing what he calls Garbageman Appreciation Day, so at least one other blogger is paying tribute to the day. The United Nations is observing World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought. Something for all three international days!

Stay tuned for more holidays beginning with Father's Day and Juneteenth through the Summer Solstice.

Friday, June 16, 2023

World Sea Turtle Day

Happy World Sea Turtle Day! Take it away, Wildlife Conservation Trust!

Sea turtles have graced the oceans for millions of years, evolving resilience to countless challenges. But the dawn of the Anthropocene has brought newer, deadlier threats: millions of tons of plastic, destruction of nesting beaches, light pollution that disorients hatchlings away from the ocean, fishing nets that trap and drown turtles, and boat-propellers that sever their flippers and crack their carapaces. Current estimates suggest that only one in 1,000 to 10,000 hatchlings survive to reach breeding age.

By improving our solid waste management systems, making our fisheries wildlife-friendly, protecting nesting beaches, and reducing our dependence on plastics, we can give these graceful animals a fighting chance at survival, and improve the health of the oceans.

We are all responsible, and our choices can make a big difference.

What choice will you make to help sea turtles?
National Day Calendar has more.

Every year on June 16th, World Sea Turtle Day highlights the importance of sea turtles. The day also encourages global supporters to dive into the threats that sea turtles face.
Did you know that sea turtles have been on the earth for over 100 million years? This means that sea turtles co-existed with dinosaurs. There are seven species of sea turtles. These include green, hawksbill, Kemp’s ridley, leatherback, loggerhead, and the Olive ridley. Of these species of sea turtles, the leatherback is the largest. The leatherback sea turtle weighs anywhere from 550 to 2,000 pounds! This type of sea turtle grows up to six feet in length. Sea turtles live in both cool and warm waters throughout the world. However, the flatback can only be found in Australia.

Sea Turtle Facts
  • Sea turtles can live between 50 to 100 years.
  • Some sea turtles travel more than 1,000 miles to return to their nesting ground.
  • Sea turtles nest multiple times, about two weeks apart, and lay up to 125 eggs per nest.
  • Most sea turtles nest at night, except for the Kemp’s ridley.
  • Leatherback sea turtles can dive nearly 4,000 feet into the water.
  • Unlike other kinds of turtles, sea turtles cannot retreat into their shell.
  • A large group of nesting sea turtles is called an “arribadas”, which is Spanish for “arrival.”
  • One more interesting fact is that the temperature of the nest determines the sea turtle’s sex. Male hatchlings are born in cooler temperatures. When temperatures in the next are warm it produces female hatchlings. Fluctuating temperatures produce a mix of male and female baby sea turtles.
Unfortunately, nearly every species of sea turtle is considered endangered. The hawksbills and Kemp’s ridley are both critically endangered. Entanglement in marine debris, destruction of habitats, and poaching for meat and eggs are among the top reasons for their endangerment.
In the year 2000, turtle conservation organizations came together to create World Sea Turtle Day. June 16th was chosen to honor the birthday of Dr. Archie Carr, a renowned sea turtle conservationist. Dr. Carr also founded the Sea Turtle Conservancy in Gainesville, Florida.
The University of Florida paid tribute to Dr. Carr in World Sea Turtle Day.

The University of Florida’s world-renowned sea turtle expert Archie Carr paved the way for sea turtle conservation. For over 30 years, his students have carried on his legacy at the Archie Carr Center for Sea Turtle Research on the UF campus. Now, as sea turtles face modern threats like climate change, a new generation of students are fighting for solutions.
I feel smarter having watched both videos and read National Day Calendar's page. I hope my readers do, too.

Speaking of my readers, I would like to know what they want me to blog about tomorrow. I am very tempted to continue this streak of writing about holidays through World Giraffe Day and National Seashell Day on the Summer Solstice. Tomorrow's choices are World Croc Day, World Day to Combat Desertification and Drought, and Global Garbage Man Day, all of which have environmental themes, or something environmental not associated with any of tomorrow's special days, like climate change and biodiversity. What do you think?

Thursday, June 15, 2023

Global Wind Day with 'Windpower' by Thomas Dolby

Happy Global Wind Day!

Global Wind Day is a worldwide event that occurs annually on 15 June. It is a day for discovering wind energy, its power and the possibilities it holds to reshape our energy systems, decarbonise our economies and boost jobs and growth.
That's by 8SA. National Day Calendar has more.

Every year on June 15th, Global Wind Day celebrates the power and possibilities that wind energy provides. It’s also a day for people to learn more about wind and this important type of energy.

Have you ever complained about the wind? Sometimes the wind ruins a perfectly beautiful day. Wind also causes dust and debris to fly around. Another complaint of wind is that it causes soil erosion. If it’s too strong, the wind knocks down trees and causes other types of damage. But the wind can also be a good thing. Many companies are embracing the wind as an affordable type of energy. These companies use wind turbines to generate wind energy.

According to the department of energy, wind energy provides the following benefits:
  • It is one of the most cost-effective sources of energy.
  • Wind energy is not dependent upon fossil fuels or coal, making it a clean energy source.
  • It is a sustainable source of energy that will never run out.
Wind energy also creates jobs. In the United States, wind turbine service technicians are the second fastest growing occupation. Besides the U.S., many other countries are taking advantage of these benefits. Some of the top producers of wind energy throughout the world include China, Germany, India, Spain, United Kingdom, and Brazil.
This is a good day for me to observe, since I'm an environmentalist who supports renewable energy. I could post much more, but I conserve my resources, so I'll save them for future posts — that is, if I'm not being a paleontologist by celebrating National Megalodon Day instead.

I close with a live performance of a song I first featured eleven years ago, Thomas Dolby - Windpower (Live).

Music video by Thomas Dolby performing Windpower (Live) (2009 Digital Remaster)
Note the video of windmills playing in the background and the electric fan Dolby holds while singing, important details supporting the song.

Wednesday, June 14, 2023

An update on D.C. Statehood for Flag Day 2023

Happy Flag Day! As I've done for the past four years, I'm observing the holiday by examining the state of D.C. statehood. People are still trying to make it happen, as WUSA9 reported Delaware Democrat introducing DC statehood bill in Senate in January of this year.

Senator Tom Carper announced he's introducing a bill to grant statehood to the nation's capital.
The circumstances are even less favorable than during the previous two sessions of Congress, when Democrats controlled the House and D.C. Statehood passed that chamber only to be filibustered in the Senate. Still, as Delegate Eleanor Holmes Norton pointed out, that doesn't make the effort impossible or less worthy.

In fact, Democrats in the House are advocating for the cause, as two videos from Forbes Breaking News show, beginning with Speaker Emerita Pelosi Pushes For D.C. Statehood In Passionate Defense Of Washington, D.C.

On Wednesday, Speaker Emerita Pelosi opposed a resolution condemning the D.C. City Council's criminal justice reforms.
That was uploaded on April 23, 2023. More recently, Forbes Breaking News uploaded Jamie Raskin Pushes For DC Statehood: ‘Congress Has The Authority’ on June 10, 2023.

On Wednesday, Rep. Jamie Raskin (D-MD) advocated for Washington DC statehood during a House Administration and Oversight Joint Committee hearing.
Good point about Congress changing the boundaries of the District of Columbia before. If it can do it once, it can do it again.

I conclude with a clip of Raskin being interviewed by Ali Velshi on MSNBC last December, Raskin Urges Puerto Rico, D.C. Statehood To ‘Grow Democracy’ In Wake Of Jan. 6.

“We’ve got to keep democracy growing, otherwise we’re constantly going to be lapsing back into these authoritarianism impulses that Donald Trump and his Party have unleashed upon us,” says Rep. Jamie Raskin on giving statehood to Puerto Rico and Washington, D.C. as an "offensive" response to Jan. 6.
Well said, Congressman.  That's both a reason I agree with and a good foreshadowing for a related topic, Puerto Rican statehood, on Piña Colada Day next month. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, June 13, 2023

LegalEagle explains 'Trump's Bombshell Federal Document Indictment'

Donald Trump is scheduled to be arraigned today — for the second time — on one of 'the Trump investigations you should actually care about'.
The other federal investigation is focused on classified documents that Trump brought with him from the White House to his Florida estate after losing the 2020 election. According to reports from the Washington Post and the New York Times, when the FBI searched his estate in August 2022, they found documents related to nuclear weapons, as well as files containing information that could put US informants in the field in danger.
LegalEagle explains the charges and evidence for them released so far in Trump's Bombshell Federal Document Indictment.

This is a bombshell...Will he actually go to jail this time?
Yes, it's a bombshell, one that requires more analysis than I'm willing and able to give here. After all, I'm a scientist, not a lawyer. I refer my readers to Marcy "Emptywheel" Wheeler's posts on the subject. She's much better at this than I would be.

I'm being a good environmentalist by recycling my answer to his second question.
I expect he'll be sentenced to house arrest in Trump Tower with the Secret Service as his guards, at least for this set of crimes. He might get a more severe punishment if he's indicted and convicted for crimes in Georgia and Washington, D.C.
I thought that this indictment would be in Washington, D.C., not Florida, but the jurisdiction doesn't matter for my expectations of punishment; it might be more severe than mere house arrest.

I'm sure I'll have more to say on this later, but first stay tuned for Flag Day, when I usually examine the state of D.C. statehood. It's also TFG's birthday. LOL, happy birthday. Enjoy your indictment presents!

Monday, June 12, 2023

PBS NewsHour explains 'Why several states are pushing to loosen child labor restrictions' on World Day Against Child Labor

Today is Loving Day, but I don't think I can top my favorite post from last year, so I'm moving on to another day being observed today, World Day Against Child Labor.
June 12 is set aside to focus on ending child labor. The World Day Against Child Labor is held annually on June 12 as an international day to raise awareness and prompt action to stop child labor in all of its forms. Supporters of the day work year round to see that children everywhere are not working in fields or factories, or even worse places. It is estimated that between 215 million and 220 million children are working full time instead of being in school or on a playground.

The United Nations estimates that almost 75 million victims of child labor are aged 5-11 years. Forty-two million children (28%) are 12-14 years old; 37 million (24%) are 15-17 years old.

More than half of them are exposed to the worst forms of child labor such as working in hazardous environments – slavery, or other types of forced labor, illicit activities including drug trafficking and prostitution, as well as involvement in armed conflict.
The World Day Against Child Labor is an International Labor Organization (ILO)-sanctioned holiday first launched in 2002. ILO has worked on finding, reporting, and ending child labor since 1919. The ILO believes that exploiting childhood constitutes evil.
Unfortunately, child labor is making a comeback and is in the news, as PBS NewsHour reported Why several states are pushing to loosen child labor restrictions earlier this month.

The U.S. government found child labor violations involving over 3,800 minors in 2022. At the same time, some states say there is too much regulation of child labor. Katherine Walts, director of the Center for the Human Rights of Children at Loyola University Chicago, and Dan Bowling, a distinguished fellow at Duke University School of Law, join Ali Rogin to discuss the state of child labor laws.
I'm being a good environmentalist by recycling my reaction from John Oliver on 'Biden & The Border' and FiveThirtyEight on immigration for the end of Title 42.
An apparent short-term solution [to the current labor shortage] is allowing more child labor; I expressed my disapproval in Fox News didn't have to apologize, so 'The Late Show with Stephen Colbert' did it for them.
I think relaxing child labor laws is not a good way to deal with a labor shortage. I prefer raising wages and improving working conditions so more adults will return to the workforce. Instead, Iowa has joined Arkansas and several other states in permitting teens to work more. I find that worrisome and a reversal of a century of progress.
That's a clear set of choices — increased legal immigration, improved wages and work conditions, or more child labor. I'm with Professor Mayda that the choices should be made clear to voters, whether French or American. I may disapprove of the eventual choice, but at least the voters will have made their decision consciously and explicitly instead of blundering into it. Also, everyone will know what their priorities really are.
I set this up as a clear set of choices — improving working conditions and wages for adults, allowing more immigration, or loosening labor laws for minors. It turns out that the choice isn't as clear-cut, as NBC News reported Government looking into child migrant worker allegations at U.S. companies: NBC News investigation just last week.

NBC News has learned that the Department of Homeland Security, Justice Department and White House officials are examining companies that allegedly hired Guatemalan children in at least 11 states, according to two U.S. officials. NBC News’ Julia Ainsley has details.
Sure, exploit some of the most vulnerable, unaccompanied minors seeking asylum. It figures. It also makes it worse.

There are more videos on the topic, which is not going away, so I might revisit it. Stay tuned.

Sunday, June 11, 2023

Celebrating 30 years of 'Jurassic Park'

As I telegraphed yesterday, today's Sunday entertainment feature celebrates 30 years of Jurassic Park. I begin with some corporate PR from the Jurassic World YouTube channel, Celebrating 30 Years of Jurassic Park.

Thirty years ago, the world experienced the original Jurassic Park, "the beginning of something that changed movies." Sam Neill (Dr. Alan Grant), Laura Dern (Dr. Ellie Sattler), and Jeff Goldblum (Dr. Ian Malcolm) return in an exclusive clip to reflect on their experiences and express their gratitude to the fandom for keeping the captivating wonders of Jurassic Park alive. After all, "there's something about dinosaurs which captures the proper imagination like nothing else."
At its core, this video is a great piece of self-promotion, but it has the best preview image, the best video description, and the best capturing of the spirit of the franchise and especially the original movie of any video I found, so in featured position it goes.

News Center Maine had the next best retrospective in 'Jurassic Park' celebrates 30th anniversary.

The film debuted at the Uptown Theater in Washington, D.C., an event that was also a fundraiser for children's charities.
The clip from 30 years ago held up really well, including the interview with Gary Hoyle of the Maine State Museum. The original movie took the science seriously, both the paleontology and the biotechnology, which has led to serious proposals for de-extinction, although not of dinosaurs from amber. That's not going to happen.

I close with KHON2 News' Kualoa Ranch celebrating 30th anniversary of Jurassic Park with LEGO and a giveaway.

It was 1993 when Steven Spielberg's Jurassic Park, the first one, came out and hit the screens.
On the one hand, this is local news promoting a local commercial event as a public service for locals' entertainment. This is something I see over and over again in local news coverage of holidays and I'm ambivalent about it. On the other, it really does describe the importance of the movie to Hawaii and how it has affected the intervening 30 years, including the filming of "Lost" and "Jumanji" at the ranch. Those are important not only to Hawaii, but to movies and television more broadly.  That history makes this clip worth sharing.

I might have more to write about the 30th anniversary of "Jurassic Park." Stay tuned.

Saturday, June 10, 2023

Vox explains 'Why Disney World is in Florida'

While I've been documenting the conflict between Disney and Ron DeSantis, Vox has been researching the history of the Reedy Creek Improvement District, Disney World's own government as it examined Why Disney World is in Florida.

Disney World really is a kingdom.
Have you ever wondered why Disney World is located where it is? Or how it came to be such a massive, self-contained universe? It’s a story that involves secret land deals, special districts, and, now, a corporation and a government locked in a feud.

The story of why Disney World is in Florida marries business and governmental concerns about the creation of the massive property. The engineering ranges from unique physical construction (like the creation of a lake) to unique legal construction (like the creation of a self-running government that could even build its own sewer system).
I knew much of the history already, since I've been following theme park YouTube accounts for as long as I've been blogging about the Retail Apocalypse by that name, but I enjoyed seeing what a news organization did with the story instead of a travel or fan channel. Vox has different interests than Defunctland, Yesterworld, Rob Plays/Midway to Main Street, Offhand Disney, Expedition Theme Park, or DFBGuide, whose videos I've embedded here; law and government are secondary concerns to them, while Vox considers those topics central to their history of Disney World. I hope my readers found Vox's perspective on Disney World interesting and entertaining as well.

Normally, I would have shared this video tomorrow for the Sunday entertainment feature, but I have something else planned — 30 years of Jurassic Park! Stay tuned.

Friday, June 9, 2023

Company Man asks 'The Decline of Borders...What Happened?' A tale of the Retail Apocalypse for Flashback Friday

It's Flashback Friday, so I'm revisiting my thoughts about Borders Books from Ten of the companies that went out of business this decade and 9,300+ stores closed this year, two tales of the Retail Apocalypse.
While I didn't realize it at the time, the first Retail Apocalypse story I wrote about on this blog was the demise of Borders Books. I thought it was like the bankruptcies of Jacobson's, whose space in Ann Arbor Borders occupied after Jacobson's moved out to Briarwood Mall, and Montgomery Ward's, which was the first anchor to abandon Northland Mall, the second Retail Apocalypse story I covered here. Both of those were weak companies that went under during a recession, which is when I expect businesses would fail. I thought much the same of Borders at the time, in addition to it being a personal loss. In retrospect, the failure of Borders was much bigger than that and turned out to be a taste of things to come.
At the time, I concentrated on what the store meant to me and outsourced my analysis of why it failed to a LiveJournal account where the analysis is now unavailable. I can relate; I stopped posting there years ago because I didn't want to agree to the Putin-friendly terms of service on a Russian-owned site. Still, the disappearance of that analysis was a big loss, one that Company Man Mike remedied when he asked The Decline of Borders...What Happened?

Borders was one of the country's most popular bookstores when it filed for bankruptcy in 2011. This video attempts to explain why they failed while many others, including Barnes & [Noble], live on.

Note: This video was completed in April 2020, and is being released today as part of the channel's 6-year anniversary celebration.
Here's Company Man Mike's list of reasons for Borders failing.

This seems like a fairly comprehensive list. I would add a mismatch in corporate culture between the employees, who really believed in the way company had been run, and the top executives, who I think caught something bad when KMart owned the company, the same thing that eventually caught up with both KMart and Sears. Sigh.

All that survives is the domain, which Barnes & Noble bought. That's like Toys R Us buying KB Toys — ironic. It's also a sign that the rest of the company's intellectual property wasn't worth saving. Even Hostess had a better fate.

Thursday, June 8, 2023

Tides are changing for World Oceans Day 2023

Happy World Oceans Day! I've been celebrating this environmental holiday on this blog for ten years, so today marks one full decade of my observing it.

I begin today's tenth anniversary celebration with France 24 English's Climate change: World Oceans Day to mark the significance of the oceans in our daily lives.*

On 8 June World Oceans Day will be celebrated worldwide, serving as a poignant reminder of the immense significance of the ocean in our daily lives. The importance of a healthy ocean cannot be overstated. They are home to 80 percent of the animal biomass, serving as a vital source of sustenance, nutrition and livelihoods for millions of people worldwide.
I was right when I wrote "I might have more on the Global Plastic Pollution Treaty as soon as Thursday," as France 24 English covered it right after talking about climate change and biodiversity. There should be a draft treaty when the delegates meet again in Nairobi later this year.

United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres mentioned the Global Plastic Pollution Treaty in World Oceans Day 2023 (8 June) - United Nations Secretary-General along with other international agreements.

Video Message by António Guterres, Secretary-General of the United Nations, on World Oceans Day 2023.
Here are the initiatives Secretary-General Guterres listed after declaring that "the tides are changing."
Last year, we adopted an ambitious global target to conserve and manage 30 per cent of land and marine and coastal areas by 2030, as well as a landmark agreement on fisheries subsidies.

At the UN Ocean Conference in Lisbon, the world agreed to push for more positive ocean action.

A global, legally binding agreement to end plastic pollution is under negotiation.

And in March, countries agreed to the historic High Seas Treaty on the conservation and sustainable use of marine biodiversity in areas beyond national jurisdiction.

Realizing the great promise of these initiatives requires collective commitment.

Sustainable Development Goal 14 — to conserve and sustainably use the ocean’s resources — hangs in the balance.

This World Oceans Day, let’s keep pushing for action.

Today and every day, let’s put the ocean first.
As a Crazy Eddie, I approve.

Follow over the jump for two videos I missed from last year's celebration that I found worth watching.

Wednesday, June 7, 2023

Vox explains 'How streaming caused the TV writers strike'

Steve in Manhattan linked to An update on the WGA strike after one month plus news about SAG-AFTRA and DGA in Mike’s Blog Round-Up at Crooks and Liars, so I'm taking that as a sign that I should write more about the writers strike. Fortunately, Vox uploaded How streaming caused the TV writers strike this morning, so I could do just that.

The way scripted television gets made today has transformed the careers of writers.
Thousands of television and film writers who are part of the Writers Guild of America are in the middle of a historic strike. They're forming picket lines in front of studios, and productions in New York and Los Angeles and shutting down active sets. The last time they went on strike was 15 years ago — when streaming’s impact on the film and television industry was only just taking shape. This time around, they are striking for better residuals and rights against the looming threat of AI, among other concerns.

At the core of this dispute is streaming and how it's revolutionized the industry. Companies like Netflix, Hulu, Apple TV+, and more have given consumers an unprecedented array of films and TV shows and opened the door to new voices that don’t have to adhere to mainstream network formats. On the other hand, streaming has also changed how television gets produced, the role writers play, and how they get paid. We interviewed four television writers and showrunners about how streaming has changed how they work, how their incomes have taken a hit, and why it has become harder than ever to build a career.
I found this video to be a fascinating look inside how television shows were made and how that process has changed in ways that may increase the amount and variety of entertainment for viewers, but that are harming the creators. We viewers should care more about the people who create what we watch beyond the actors, who have authorized a strike. We don't want the executives to accidentally kill the geese that lay the golden eggs.

Tuesday, June 6, 2023

PBS Digital's 'Be Smart' recounts 'How the CIA Secretly Spied On Climate Change'

Yesterday, the subject was Beat plastic pollution on World Environment Day. Today, it's a different environmental problem, climate change. PBS Digital's "Be Smart" has an interesting story about it, along with space, technology, and history, in How the CIA Secretly Spied On Climate Change.

Cold War… warming planet?
A few years after the collapse of the Soviet Union, a top-secret, first-of-its-kind US spy satellite program was declassified, leading to the unexpected story of how former enemies became scientific allies, and technology invented for Cold War espionage was repurposed to study and combat the newest and greatest threat to human civilization: Climate Change.
This story is what a lot of science fiction depicts, humanity uniting in the face of a greater threat. Unfortunately, this only works if everyone agrees that something is a greater threat. Note when the program was suspended and discontinued, during the administrations of George W. Bush and Donald Trump. They didn't regard climate change as a larger threat than terrorism or illegal immigration, respectively. The Biden Administration takes the issue more seriously, but the war in Ukraine precludes resuming this king of cooperation with Russia — yet another reason to oppose Russia's aggression.

Monday, June 5, 2023

Beat plastic pollution on World Environment Day

Happy World Environment Day! This year's theme is "beat plastic pollution," which PBS NewsHour described in last month's The UN wants to drastically reduce plastic pollution by 2040. Here’s how.

As plastic waste piles up in the world’s landfills, sewer systems and oceans, the United Nations has set a goal to reduce plastic pollution by 80 percent by the year 2040. Inger Andersen, head of the United Nations Environment Programme, joins William Brangham to discuss the upcoming negotiations over how to realize this goal.
Listening to Inger Andersen talk about how plastic containers are a response to consumers wanting convenience reminds me that my first lecture in environmental science begins with a discussion of values and one of those values is convenience. It set it, along with profit and comfort, as counterpoints to sustainability, which I call the main value of environmental science. We can have all these values; I just think they need to prioritized properly.

Andersen brought up other topics from my environmental science class, such as a circular economy. That ties into one of the science-based sustainability principles from the textbook, chemical cycling. It fits one of Commoner's Laws, nature knows best. That plastic is everywhere, including in our own bodies, demonstrates the rest of Commoner's Laws, everything is connected to everything else, everything must go somewhere, so there is no "away," and there is no free lunch. Too bad my students are taking a test today, otherwise I'd show this video to them.

PBS NewsHour was revisiting this story, as the show examined the issue last December in How countries are trying to tackle the plastic pollution problem together.

This week, representatives from 150 nations are meeting in Uruguay with the goal of dramatically reducing or eliminating all plastic pollution by 2040. Meanwhile, U.S. lawmakers introduced a new bill to help curtail the harmful impacts of plastic waste. Washington Post reporter Michael Birnbaum joins Amna Nawaz to discuss.
This story describes government-based solutions to plastic pollution. CNBC's How Cleaning Up Plastic Pollution Is Making Millions shows market-based solutions to the problem.

For-profit companies Plastic Bank and RePurpose Global are incentivizing plastic collection and recycling in developing nations, and selling plastic credits to companies looking to offset their new plastic production. But while funding the development of recycling ecosystems in areas with poor waste management infrastructure is undeniably positive, some experts are concerned that the emerging plastic credits market will distract from the systemic changes that are truly needed to end plastic pollution.
This video ties into posts about fixing plastic recycling. This includes some bad news, like the U.S. recycling about 5% of its plastic while the world recycles 9%. We're going backwards!

I might have more on the Global Plastic Pollution Treaty as soon as Thursday, which is World Oceans Day, one of the first environmental holidays I celebrated on this blog. Stay tuned.

Sunday, June 4, 2023

An update on the WGA strike after one month plus news about SAG-AFTRA and DGA

The writers strike has been going on for a full month, so it's the subject of today's Sunday entertainment feature. I begin with the Los Angeles Times reporting Hollywood's writers are on strike. Here are five things you need to know on June 1, 2023.

Hollywood's writers have gone on strike for the first time in 15 years amid a sea change in the way content is being distributed and creators are being compensated.
PBS NewsHour covered much the same territory two weeks ago, when it uploaded Hollywood faces larger work stoppage as actors threaten to strike alongside writers.

The actors union SAG-AFTRA has called for a strike authorization vote. If the strike is approved, actors could join the more than 11,000 Writers Guild members already on the picket line putting more pressure on studios and networks. The writers' strike halted production of movies, scripted series and late-night shows. Geoff Bennett discussed what's at stake with Sal Gentile and Jeane Phan Wong.
The SAG-AFTRA leadership is recommending that the rank-and-file vote yes. Based on that and the solidarity among all the unions supporting the WGA, I think the vote will be yes. That puts added pressure on the TV and movie producers before the SAG-AFTRA contract expires on June 30.

One Hollywood union will almost certainly not be striking, as ABC 7 in Los Angeles reported Directors guild and Hollywood studios reach tentative agreement on new 3-year contract today.

The deal includes wage increases totaling 12% throughout the three years of the contract and provides a 76% increase in streaming residuals.
This reminds me of what I wrote last month.
[Bloomberg’s Lucas Shaw] observed that the studios appear to be waiting to finalize the contracts with the DGA and SAG-AFTRA before settling with the WGA, which is what happened 15 years ago. History doesn't repeat, but it sure does rhyme.
Sure enough, current events are rhyming with history. CBS News quoted the WGA's response in the description to WGA says potential DGA deal wouldn't end writers strike.*
In a memo Thursday, the Writers Guild of America told members that the Directors Guild of America and Screen Actors Guild negotiations will not affect their fight. The memo said the "era of divide and conquer is over." Anousha Sakoui, a staff writer for the Los Angeles Times, joined CBS News to talk about the situation, a month into the writers strike.
Let's see if the WGA is right, or if current events continue to rhyme with history. Stay tuned.

*The various CBS News YouTube accounts have a line about video licensing. I'm not sure that applies to embedding their videos, which CBS News hasn't blocked, but I'm not taking any chances by embedding any of their videos from the past year since they added that line.

Saturday, June 3, 2023

CNBC explains 'How Odometer Fraud Became A $1 Billion Problem,' a driving update

For today's driving update, I'm sharing CNBC explains How Odometer Fraud Became A $1 Billion Problem.

Odometer fraud is a stealthy and a lesser known form of fraud that is hard to detect, but can cost a car buyer thousands. Fraudsters will roll back odometers on cars to hide the vehicle's mileage in the hope of extracting a better price. And as used car prices rose during the pandemic, odometer fraud could've become a more attractive way to make some extra bucks. About 10.5 million cars on American roads have had their odometers tampered with in some way, and about 1.9 million individuals have had their odometers rolled back, according to Carfax. The average cost to those affected is about $4,000 in addition to higher taxes. It is enough of a problem that there is even a federal Office of Odometer Fraud Investigation at the U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administ[r]ation (NHTSA) It is staffed by agents investigating these types of crimes. The department estimates that about 400,000 vehicles are sold each year with false odometer readings.
The pandemic disrupting the microchip supply chain for automakers causing a chip shortage resulted in a shortage of new vehicles and a surge in demand and prices for used cars and light trucks. That gave even more incentive to crooked actors, just like a shortage of platinum, palladium, and other platinum-group metals has led to a rise in catalytic converter theft. I keep finding examples of "everything is connected to everything else and there is no free lunch," even in crime.

That's the big picture. Follow over the jump for my personal driving update, which also features odometer readings.

Friday, June 2, 2023

Debt ceiling bill approved by Senate, sent to President Biden for signature

Yesterday's news was House votes to approve debt ceiling deal, on to the Senate. Today, as MSNBC reported on "The 11th Hour," the news is Senate passes debt limit bill.

After debating a series of amendments, the Senate passed the debt ceiling deal struck by President Biden and Speaker Kevin McCarthy. The bill now heads to Biden’s desk for a signature as Monday’s debt deadline approaches.
As the preview image shows, the bill passed 66 to 36, with one Senator absent. It now goes to President Joe Biden to sign, which he will do this weekend after addressing the country at 7 P.M. EDT tonight. As I wrote yesterday, crisis averted!

With that out of the way, follow over the jump as I look for the devil in the details, one of the punchlines in the Satan Sandwich cartoon that served as the period on yesterday's post.