Lobster shell patterns make concrete stronger: Australian researcher Reuters US stock rally drives ‘ludicrous index’ towards dotcom era heights FT Microsoft smashes Wall Street’s expectations with bn sales bonanza The Register Michael Burry Calls GameStop Rally ‘Unnatural, Insane’ Bloomberg. I don’t play the ponies, so all I can say is that this thread seems plausible: Officially, they're manipulating $GME (and $BB and $KOSS) because these low-value stocks are being very heavily shorted, and if something moves the value of the stock up (like, tens of thousands of retail investors acting in near unison), those short-sellers may be forced to sell — Toxic (@toxic) January 26, 2021 Stoller comments: One of the guys who profited from the GameStop Squeeze also bet big on the collapse of
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Michael Burry Calls GameStop Rally ‘Unnatural, Insane’ Bloomberg. I don’t play the ponies, so all I can say is that this thread seems plausible:
Officially, they're manipulating $GME (and $BB and $KOSS) because these low-value stocks are being very heavily shorted, and if something moves the value of the stock up (like, tens of thousands of retail investors acting in near unison), those short-sellers may be forced to sell
— Toxic (@toxic) January 26, 2021
One of the guys who profited from the GameStop Squeeze also bet big on the collapse of subprime. Hoocoodanode. From last year.https://t.co/fSud6CKtNH
— Rowen (@SCBasenji) January 27, 2021
UPDATE One more thread, this one a bit more triumphalist:
/r/WallStreetBets about to blowup another hedge fund, this one valued at $13.1 BILLION before the Reddit trolls decided to all buy GameStop lol pic.twitter.com/aONX0SwEwb
— William LeGate (@williamlegate) January 26, 2021
UK variant, UCSD researcher warns, looks like a COVID-19 time bomb San Diego Union Tribune
Host-directed therapies against early-lineage SARS-CoV-2 retain efficacy against B.1.1.7 variant (preprint) bioRxiv. From the Abstract: “Here, in the first study of the full-length B.1.1.7 variant virus, we find two host-directed drugs, plitidepsin (Aplidin; inhibits translation elongation factor eEF1A) and ralimetinib (inhibits p38 MAP kinase cascade), as well as remdesivir, to possess similar antiviral activity against both the early-lineage SARS-CoV-2 and the B.1.1.7 variant, evaluated in both human gastrointestinal and lung epithelial cell lines. We find that plitidepsin is over an order of magnitude more potent than remdesivir against both viruses. These results highlight the importance of continued development of host-directed therapeutics to combat current and future coronavirus variant outbreaks.” See here on “host-directed therapeutics” (HDTs): “Novel strategies for HDTs are currently being pursued that either block host cell factors or pathways essential for pathogen survival, or activate and reinstall pathogen-antagonizing mechanisms, thus rendering the host cell non-permissive.”
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Covid and me: 10 days on life support (no paywall) FT. Not just the flu.
Plitidepsin has potent preclinical efficacy against SARS-CoV-2 by targeting the host protein eEF1A Science. From the Abstract: “Here we report that the drug plitidepsin (Aplidin), which has limited clinical approval, possesses antiviral activity (IC90 = 0.88 nM) 27.5-fold more potent than remdesivir against SARS-CoV-2 in vitro, with limited toxicity in cell culture. Through the use of a drug resistant mutant, we show that the antiviral activity of plitidepsin against SARS-CoV-2 is mediated through inhibition of the known target eEF1A. We demonstrate the in vivo efficacy of plitidepsin treatment in two mouse models of SARS-CoV-2 infection with a reduction of viral replication in the lungs by two orders of magnitude using prophylactic treatment.”
Allergic Reactions Including Anaphylaxis After Receipt of the First Dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine JAMA. “During December 14 to 23, 2020, after administration of a reported 1 893 360 first doses of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine (1 177 527 in women, 648 327 in men, and 67 506 with sex of recipient not reported), CDC identified 21 case reports submitted to VAERS that met Brighton Collaboration case definition criteria for anaphylaxis (Table), corresponding to an estimated rate of 11.1 cases per million doses administered. ”
Scientists unravel mystery of sex disparities in COVID-19 outcomes (press release) Yale News (original).
[W]hy are men are 1.7 times more likely to die from the virus than women? One of the first explanations, researchers say, comes from basic biology. Women have two X chromosomes, men have one. X chromosomes are important because they are rich in genes that regulate immune response. While one of those X chromosomes in women is silenced, in some cases key genes from both X chromosomes can activate the innate immune system, the early alarm system that detects pathogens. Essentially, women have immune system reinforcements they can call upon early in infections that men, with their single X chromosomes, don’t possess.
But let’s not go all monocausal…
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I hate this framing:
"I want to urge everyone to take the vaccine when it is your turn. It is really pretty painless and it will save your life."
— CNN (@CNN) January 26, 2021
Vaccines work on the collective level, not the individual level. So not only does Harris get [genuflects] the science wrong, she obscures the moral case. Vaccines are about public health. They are not like popping a pill to deal with your individual ailment!
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States Ignore New Data Showing How To Halt COVID Spread Walter Bragman and David Sirota, The Daily Poster
Data and Policy to Guide Opening Schools Safely to Limit the Spread of SARS-CoV-2 Infection JAMA. “Decisions made today can help ensure safe operation of schools and provide critical services to children and adolescents in the US. Some of these decisions may be difficult. They include a commitment to implement community-based policies that reduce transmission when SARS-CoV-2 incidence is high (eg, by restricting indoor dining at restaurants), and school-based policies to postpone school-related activities that can increase risk of in-school transmission (eg, indoor sports practice or competition). ”
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Another Xi blunder: China desperate for Aussie wheat Macrobusiness
The world is dangerously dependent on Taiwan for semiconductors South China Morning Post
The many-splendoured sewa network at Singhu People’s Archive of Rural India. “Sewa is available in many-hued and very generous forms – all as offerings of solidarity with the protests.” Impressive.
An Unfinished Epoch of Revolution Spectre Journal. The Arab Spring, ten years on.
Opinion: Egypt is synonymous with hopelessness Deutsche Welle
From BTS to Blackpink, K-pop dance practice videos are all the rage with fans: it’s ‘a way to get closer’ to their idols South China Morning Post. Parasocial relations.
Mastercard to increase fees for UK purchases from EU FT. Sunlit uplands? Priceless.
Covid: Dutch curfew riots rage for third night BBC. This schtick has aged well:
#BREAKING First African journalist to reach Dutch capital, Amsterdam, ground zero for Caucasian Spring which has toppled governments and autocrats across covid-ravaged first world, reports shocking scenes of violence and devastation following rights protests by anti-science mobs.
— gathara (@gathara) January 26, 2021
Nord Stream 2 Pipelay Operations Resume Maritime Executive
The Impeachment and Trial of a Former President (PDF) Congressional Research Service
Waiting For Our Salazar The American Conservative. So a “smart Trump” would be a Philosopher King?
Competence is Joe Biden’s best strategy Martin Wolf, FT
That’s quite an act. What do you call it?
JUST IN: House and Senate Democrats introduce legislation to raise the federal minimum wage from $7.25 to $15 by 2025. pic.twitter.com/aSNATgY5Ar
— NBC News (@NBCNews) January 26, 2021
The Democrats! There’s always a tweet:
No one should have to work more than one job to make ends meet. We have to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour and build an inclusive middle class that brings everyone along.
— Joe Biden (@JoeBiden) July 25, 2020
Big Brother Is Watching You Watch
Destructive protests by anarchists and extremists signal divided left as Biden administration begins WaPo. “… the Center for Strategic and International Studies, a nonprofit policy research group…”
Our Famously Free Press
Meet the Censored: Status Coup Matt Taibbi, TK News
L’Affaire Joffrey Epstein
Leon Black Did Nothing Wrong, Will Stop Being Apollo CEO Anyway Dealbreaker. The deck: “He did do twice as much not wrong as previously reported…” See Yves on Black and his dealings. Meanwhile, “tax advice” lol:
"I'm not sure I agree with you a hundred percent on your police work, there, Lou." — Marge Gunderson https://t.co/MnHpukQqM4
— Jeet Heer (@HeerJeet) January 27, 2021
Leon Black and the American Tradition of Impunity Jacob Bachrach, The New Republic
Boeing 737 MAX – Still Not Fixed (PDF) Ed Pierson. “So why did two brand-new airplanes (2 months and 4 months old) have flight control system problems in the weeks leading up to the crashes? Why did both airplanes have unexplainable electrical system faults? Why has there been a rash of production quality problems recently surfacing on new 737 MAX airplanes? Why did 13 other new MAX airplanes have safety related incidents within their first year of service? All signs point back to where these airplanes were produced, the 737 Factory.”
Imperial Collapse Watch
The Rise and Fall and Rise (and Fall) of the U.S. Financial Empire Adam Tooze, Foreign Policy
Delusions of Dominance Foreign Affairs
World’s Richest Men, Musk and Bezos, Fight Over Satellite Fleets Bloomberg. Who will be first to ruin the night sky?
Meet the Customer Service Reps for Disney and Airbnb Who Have to Pay to Talk to You Pro Publica. Chickenization. From October 2020, more germane than ever.
Hard Times Andrew Cockburn, Hard Times
Cooperative Conversions & Employee Buyouts Grassroots Economic Organizing
Toxic Chemicals Threaten Humanity’s Ability to Reproduce The Intercept
Antidote du jour (via):
This Chinese man in quarantine lowered his dog down from the fourth floor to "walk" it, sparking criticism online pic.twitter.com/w5lzDO1HDn
— SCMP News (@SCMPNews) January 26, 2021
See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.