Wednesday, May 18, 2022

Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- Ross Barkan takes stock of the reality that the U.S. has allowed a million people to die of a disease whose transmission could largely have been prevented, while Alexander Quon reports on the latest data showing that official death totals in Saskatchewan significantly undercount the lives lost to COVID-19. Holly Else notes that a more thorough accounting of the COVID damage would include recognition of the time and function lost due to disability as well, while Danielle Wenner and Gabriella Arguidas Ramirez point out that a lack of messaging about the reality of long COVID is likely distorting both public policy and individual actions. And Malia Jones writes that while the decision by governments to deny us current and accurate information makes it impossible to fully assess our risks, we're still best off doing all we can to avoid catching and spreading COVID. 

- Max Fawcett writes that the meltdown in cryptocurrency just as Pierre Poilievre put it at the centre of his Con leadership campaign highlights the need for exactly the public-interest regulators who will be the first to go under fanatic libertarians. And Jessica McKenzie discusses how the harm done by bitcoin includes an assertion of entitlement to burn gas and spew carbon pollution without regulation or regard for the planet. 

- Chris Turner offers a valiant defence of climate optimism even as the likelihood of success in averting climate breakdown appears grim. And Damian Carrington reports on new research showing that in order to avoid catastrophe we need to not only stop the 195 carbon bombs in the planning stages, but also shut down existing fossil fuel production sites. 

- David Wallace-Wells writes that temperatures which are now being reported as unprecedently extreme will likely be the norm (or even the lower end of expectations) in the decades to come. Olivia Rosane highlights the UN's research showing that 75% of the world could face drought by 2050 due to climate change and land degradation. And Karin Brulliard reports on New Mexico's largest-ever fire which is still burning after a month. 

- Christopher Mathias reports on the concerted effort by violent extremists to hijack Idaho's entire political system through both intimidation and abuse of electoral systems.  

- Finally, Jared Abbott interviews Jonathan Smucker and Alison Troy about the opportunities available for left-wing populism to offer a positive alternative to the hatred and nihilism of the right. 

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