Welcome to Thursday, June 10, 2021: National Iced Tea Day. It’s also National Black Cow Day (a tassty American fountain drink made with root beer and ice cream, also known as a “root beer float”), National Herb and Spice Day, and World Art Nouveau Day. Here’s a nice piece of Art Nouveau furniture that I would love to own.
News of the Day:
The Keystone Pipeline, designed to convey oil from northern Alberta to the lower 48, is dead, defunct, singing with the Choir Invisible. It is an Ex Pipeline. The Biden administration, continuing its truly progressive environmental policy, revoked the pipeline’s permit yesterday. In light of that, the pipeline developer abandoned the project.
The Washington Post reports that some of the Capitol rioters in jail for their actions are being kept in jail by the continual pronouncements of Trump and his minions that the election was stolen. From the paper:
In keeping a Trump supporter and felon in jail in Michigan pending trial, Jackson highlighted a message in which the man said he was in D.C. on Jan. 6 because “Trump’s the only big shot I trust right now.”
The man has been charged with obstructing a congressional proceeding and related crimes, and his “promise to take action in the future cannot be dismissed as an unlikely occurrence given that his singular source of information . . . continues to propagate the lie that inspired the attack on a near daily basis,” Jackson wrote. [Judge Amy Berman Jackson denied the man bail.]
This isn’t the only person in this situation, for such folks are deemed dangers to public safety so long as the “stolen election” scenario is promulgated. I had no idea that Trump is still banging this drum, as I’ve been happily ignoring and/or unaware of his actions since he became President-Eject.
Have you wondered what’s up with Elizabeth Holmes, accused (with her Theranos colleague Sunny Balwani) of wire fraud and conspiracy, and now of destroying evidence about the efficacy of her blood-testing machines? Preparations for a July trial are in fact underway, and we’re at the jury selection stage. Prosecutors have accused her legal team of trying to stack the jury, since the team submitted 41 pages of questions (112 questions), many of which, say the prosecution, are irrelevant. Holmes faces 20 years in jail. If you read John Carreyrou’s fascinating book about Holmes and Theranos (highly recommended by yours truly), you’ll want to see her in a prison suit.
Queen Elizabeth has been canceled! According to the BBC, Oxford students at Magdalen college have voted to remove the Queen’s photo portrait from one of their common rooms. The reason? Colonialism!:
“. . . for some students, depictions of the monarch and the British monarchy represent recent colonial history”.
As far as I know, the Queen hasn’t engaged in acts of colonialism. But it doesn’t matter, for her ancestors did! (h/t Jez)
You probably didn’t know this (nor did I), but judges can increase the sentences of someone who was acquitted of a crime and later convicted of a lesser crime. That is, if you’re acquitted of a murder, and later convicted of a robbery whose normal penalty is four years in jail, your prior acquittal could lead the judge to more than double your sentence. This procedure, called “acquitted conduct sentencing”, seems manifestly unjust, but is widespread. Reader Paul informs me that, according to this article in Persuasion, the Senate Judiciary Committee will begin considering a bill that bans this kind of sentencing.
Also from the BBC, a remarkable body-surfing duck (named “Duck”) in Ausralia. He spends up to two hours a day riding the waves. Click on the screenshot to go to the video:
Finally, today’s reported Covid-19 death toll in the U.S. is 598,355, an increase of 417 deaths over yesterday’s figure. The reported world death toll is now 3,777.879, an increase of about 14,200 over yesterday’s total.
Stuff that happened on June 10 includes:
- 1692 – Salem witch trials: Bridget Bishop is hanged at Gallows Hill near Salem, Massachusetts, for “certaine Detestable Arts called Witchcraft and Sorceries”.
Here’s a memorial to Bishop I photographed when I visited Salem two years ago. I wonder who left the flowers.
- 1793 – The Jardin des Plantes museum opens in Paris. A year later, it becomes the first public zoo.
- 1829 – The first Boat Race between the University of Oxford and the University of Cambridge takes place on the Thames in London.
- 1886 – Mount Tarawera in New Zealand erupts, killing 153 people and burying the famous Pink and White Terraces. Eruptions continue for three months creating a large, 17 km long fissure across the mountain peak.
Sadly, these silica deposits, once the tourist sight in New Zealand, are no more. They may exist underwater, but it’s unlikely anybody will ever see them again. No color photos exist, but here’s a painting of the White Terraces:
Here’s the Sharif. In the movie Lawrence of Arabia, Alec Guinness played his son Faisal.
- 1942 – World War II: The Lidice massacre is perpetrated as a reprisal for the assassination of Obergruppenführer Reinhard Heydrich.
- 1944 – In baseball, 15-year-old Joe Nuxhall of the Cincinnati Reds becomes the youngest player ever in a major-league game.
- 1947 – Saab produces its first automobile.
Here’s a prototype for the first Saab, the “Ursaab”:
- 1963 – The Equal Pay Act of 1963, aimed at abolishing wage disparity based on sex, was signed into law by John F. Kennedy as part of his New Frontier Program.
- 1964 – United States Senate breaks a 75-day filibuster against the Civil Rights Act of 1964, leading to the bill’s passage.
- 1991 – Eleven-year-old Jaycee Lee Dugard is kidnapped in South Lake Tahoe, California; she would remain a captive until 2009.
- 2002 – The first direct electronic communication experiment between the nervous systems of two humans is carried out by Kevin Warwick in the United Kingdom.
Notables born on this day include:
Here’s part of a larger Courbet painting, “The Painter’s Studio: A Real Allegory Summing Up Seven Years of My Life as an Artist, 1854-5“, and there’s a cat:
McDaniel was of course the first African-American to win an Oscar: for Best Supporting Actress (in Gone with the Win) in 1940. Her role now makes people cringe, but it was a breakthrough. Here’s her award; note that she says she hope she will “always be a credit to her race.”
- 1915 – Saul Bellow, Canadian-American novelist, essayist and short story writer, Nobel Prize laureate (d. 2005)
- 1921 – Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh (d. 2021)
- 1922 – Judy Garland, American singer, actress, and vaudevillian (d. 1969)
- 1928 – Maurice Sendak, American author and illustrator (d. 2012)
- 1929 – E. O. Wilson, American biologist, author, and academic.
Happy birthday to Ed, who is 92 today, the same age as my own Ph.D. advisor (and Wilson’s erstwhile nemesis), Dick Lewontin. Here’s a photo I took of Ed talking to Patty Gowaty at a lunch for bigwigs (I was a littlewig there) at Harvard in 2007:
- 1965 – Elizabeth Hurley, English model, actress, and producer
- 1982 – Tara Lipinski, American figure skater
Those who packed it in on June 10 include:
- 323 BC – Alexander the Great, Macedonian king (b. 356 BC)
- 1926 – Antoni Gaudí, Spanish architect, designed the Park Güell (b. 1852)
- 1967 – Spencer Tracy, American actor (b. 1900)
Tracy had a famous, l26-year relationship with Katherine Hepburn though, as a Catholic, he remained married to another. Here are the pair in “Adam’s Rib” (1949):
- 2004 – Ray Charles, American singer-songwriter, pianist, and actor (b. 1930)
- 2016 – Gordie Howe, Canadian ice hockey player (b. 1928)
Meanwhile in Dobrzyn: Hili is watching the birds carefully.
Hili: Young starlings are bigger and bigger.Paulina: Focus on what’s obtainable.(Photo: Paulina R.)
Hili: Młode szpaki są coraz większe.Paulina: Koncentruj się na tym co osiągalne.(Zdjęcie: Paulina R.)
A photo of Szaron by Andrzej;
A groaner from Jesus of the Day:
From Titania. A reader sent me this paper from The Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, but at first I thought it was surely a hoax (just glance at the paper for a minute!). But it seems to be real! The world is going to hell. If any reader wants to navigate the paper and report back in the comments (free link in the previous sentence), you’re welcome to do so.
If anyone needs proof that white fragility is real, just show a white person this article and see what happens…
It never ceases to amaze me how defensive white people get when you point out that they're all parasites. pic.twitter.com/MDPXR8N2Mo
— Titania McGrath (@TitaniaMcGrath) June 9, 2021
From a reader. I suppose this kind of word salad is why Kendi refuses to debate anyone who disagrees with him:
In which academic discipline is this circular, naive, deer-caught-in-the-headlights response to a basic and urgent question considered insightful or excellent?
A national culture exempting this (which, sadly, is typical of him) from judgment is unintentionally racist itself. pic.twitter.com/n493NpjFmx
— John McWhorter (@JohnHMcWhorter) June 1, 2021
From Luana: a new paper that says neo-Darwinism still rules okay:
“Ultimately, we conclude that punctuated equilibrium did not represent a major revolution in evolutionary biology – although debate on this point stimulated significant research and furthered the field – and that Neo-Darwinism is alive and well.” https://t.co/Sh5TsDkeTF pic.twitter.com/tAozCjIxOp
— Steve Stewart-Williams (@SteveStuWill) June 9, 2021
Also from Luana. I’m not a big fan of Greenwald, but here he highlights on area in which liberalism is getting devoured by termites. I wrote about the ACLU article here.
For anyone who doubts that liberal journalists are opposed to free speech whenever it conflicts with their liberal activism, look at this memo from the liberal journalists of the Intercept's Union, published by the NYT, where they demanded free speech limits *explicitly*: pic.twitter.com/IeAkkl8Klk
— Glenn Greenwald (@ggreenwald) June 9, 2021
Tweets from Matthew. Keep watching this video, and tell me how many shelduck ducklings you see. I wonder if any were kidnapped?
— WWT (@WWTworldwide) June 9, 2021
Damselfly playing peekaboo around a stem of grass this morning
I've photographed them doing this before but this is the 1st time I've video it! pic.twitter.com/UM6F5V9nRW
— Oliver C Wright (@OW_Photography) June 8, 2021
Just when you think people can’t get any loonier about the COVID vaccine:
OHIO: Anti-vaccine *expert* witness claims vaccine causes forks and keys to stick to your forehead and it’s linked to 5G network towers…. Up there trying to out-Tennessee us! 😵💫🥴 pic.twitter.com/GdbQZHrdLv
— The Tennessee Holler (@TheTNHoller) June 8, 2021