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Saturday Stories: Treating The Unvaccinated, Omicron, And Mildness

Posted December 11, 2021 by Yoni Freedhoff

Steven Novella, in Science Based Medicine, on why we cannot and should not withhold medical care from the unvaccinated. 
Sarah Zhang, in The Atlantic, on why Omicron’s explosive growth is so concerning. 
Andrew Pekosz, in The New York Times,…

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General

Today’s news: maybe the Jan 6 insurrection actually messed up the plan?

Posted September 27, 2021 by Anonymous
 Here’s an important new story about what was supposed to happen on Jan 6:

I have been saying for months that the FBI and the Justice Department should have been holding regular briefings to explain to the American people what happened on Jan 6. 

They haven’t been doing it, and now Americans are either forgetting what happened, or thinking it was really no big deal, yada yada yada. 
But today’s news from Sydney Powell really does help explain for the first time what I always found to be the most inexplicable thing about that day: why was Trump trying so hard to delay the certification for a few hours or a day? What on earth was the point?
Remember all the stories about Rudy phoning Senator Tommy Tuberville to plead with him to throw up roadblocks to Senate certification?  Remember the goofy idea of getting the House and Senate reps from six states to demand the House and Senate each have 2-hour debates on each state certification, which would have turned the process into an all day marathon and might well have adjourned it until the next day? 
I could never understand why they were trying to play these games with the certification – what was the sense anyway?. 
In the end, it didn’t work. Yes, the House and Senate members for Arizona and Pennsylvania did force the extra debates for these states. But then, before the assembly could consider Georgia, Wisconsin, Michigan and Nevada, the insurrectionists had invaded the Capitol buildings and everyone ran for their lives.  After that, when Pence and Pelosi reconvened later that evening, the mood had changed – lawmakers were spooked and no longer had any appetite for games and delays. So only the two states were debated and each vote was handled as quickly as they could. Everybody stayed until 3 am and finally Biden was declared president. 
And after it was all over, I did wonder: What on earth was the point of the game-playing? Why were they trying so hard just to delay the inevitable for a day or two? 
Now we find out why – Trump thought if they could delay the Biden certification until Jan 7, then Supreme Court Justice Alito would have time to overturn the problematic state certifications and then Republican state legislatures could throw the election to Trump.
 ….Powell’s interview “suggests that the purpose of the insurrection was to DELAY the electoral college certification to give [Justice Samuel Alito] time to intervene on this legal challenge. But, Powell says they didn’t anticipate Pelosi reconvening Congress that day.” 
 Powell said that while then-President Donald Trump was inciting a riot at the Capitol, her team was filing a “12th Amendment constitutional challenge to the process the Congress was about to use.”
 “Justice Alito was our circuit justice for that,” she recalled. “And we were suing the vice president to follow the 12th Amendment as opposed to the Electoral College Act.” 
 Powell alleged that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi learned of the lawsuit and rushed to have Congress certify the election despite the ongoing attack on the U.S. Capitol. 
 “Everything broke loose and she really had to speed up reconvening Congress to get the vote going before Justice Alito might have issued an injunction to stop it all, which is what should have happened,” the attorney said
So that makes it much easier to understand why Trump wanted the delay.
 And it makes me realize again, how close the US government came to being overthrown by a failed president. 
And in the end, maybe Trump did it to himself — if Trump’s insurrection hadn’t been so successful, invading the Capitol and terrifying the House and Senate members, then maybe the Senate and House wouldn’t have worked so hard on that critical night to get Biden confirmed then and there!

In other news today, I guess nobody told Post Media that the election is over.

COVID news keeps getting worse every day – more than a thousand new cases in Saskatchewan just this weekend. This is absolutely nuts – the anti-vaxxers are terrified of COVID but they’re now trying to demonize doctors and nurses, and they’re putting together “protocols” to breathe hydrogen peroxide and gargle iodine.

My brother was at the Saskatoon Symphony performance this weekend, and there was one anti-vax cellist playing out front for spare change, because she refused to get vaccinated – so now she is losing her career and all her friends, just because of anti-vax ignorant stubbornness. 

And it makes me absolutely furious that so many innocent people are being hurt by the anti-vax intransigence. I see more and more doctors speaking out:

I agree with this too:

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General

Saturday Stories: Nazi Analogies, They’re Not Just Numbers, And Who Are The Unvaccinated

Posted October 16, 2021 by Yoni Freedhoff

Arthur Caplan, in The Cancer Letter, on how Nazi analogies (and more specifically Vinay Prasad’s) regarding COVID are imbecilic, ignorant, and dangerous.Marie-Danielle Smith, in MacLeans, with the story of a family of 3 who like all of those we’ve los…

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General

Saturday Stories: The Great Surrender, It’s Mild, It’s So Mild, With COVID

Posted January 15, 2022 by Yoni Freedhoff

Chuck Wendig, in TerribleMinds, on our great surrender and how we let COVID win.Bruce Arthur, in The Toronto Star, on the myth of mild Omicron.Katherine J. Wu, in The Atlantic, on how we’re long past the point of hoping ‘mild’ Omicron will spare us.Ed…

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Energy

EU Scientists and Politicians Clash Over Gas and Nuclear as ‘Sustainable’ Investments

Posted January 25, 2022 by Anonymous

The European Union’s scientific and political communities are locked in a battle over whether gas and nuclear can be considered green investments. The latest development in this years-long fight came on Monday, when the European Commission’s scientific expert group, the Platform on Sustainable Finance (PSF), pushed back against including gas and nuclear in the EU […]

The post EU Scientists and Politicians Clash Over Gas and Nuclear as ‘Sustainable’ Investments appeared first on DeSmog.

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Energy

UK Oil Regulator Has ‘No Duty’ to Consider North Sea Tax Breaks or Indirect Emissions, Court Rules

Posted January 18, 2022 by Anonymous

The UK government is not legally required to consider tax breaks to oil and gas companies or emissions from burning fossil fuels when regulating the North Sea sector, a court has ruled today, rejecting a complaint by climate campaigners.  At a judicial review hearing in December at the Royal Courts of Justice in London, campaigners […]

The post UK Oil Regulator Has ‘No Duty’ to Consider North Sea Tax Breaks or Indirect Emissions, Court Rules appeared first on DeSmog.

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General

Today’s News: truth

Posted October 18, 2021 by Anonymous

There is such truth here:

And truth here too:

And Halloween is coming up!

Meanwhile, here in Saskatchewan, our COVID situation is so bad – I cannotimagine the chaos and death in Saskatchewan hospitals right now — and our premier Scott Moe is leading us by naming some guy in North Battleford as the director of Covid response, and immitating a deer in the headlights:

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General

Every Diet Works For Someone, No Diet Works For Everyone, Diets Are Difficult – IF 2021 Edition

Posted November 24, 2021 by Yoni Freedhoff

Joining an ever increasing cavalcade of studies of different diets that demonstrate they all work as well or as poorly as one another comes this week’s A randomised controlled trial of the 5:2 diet published in PLoS. In it researchers randomly as…

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Energy

How Exxon Is Using an Unusual Law to Intimidate Critics Over its Climate Denial

Posted January 18, 2022 by guest

By Chris McGreal, The Guardian. This story was originally published by The Guardian, and is republished here as part of Covering Climate Now, a global journalism collaboration strengthening coverage of the climate crisis. xxonMobil is attempting to use an unusual Texas law to target and intimidate its critics, claiming that lawsuits against the company over its long […]

The post How Exxon Is Using an Unusual Law to Intimidate Critics Over its Climate Denial appeared first on DeSmog.

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General

When Will USA Border Open to Canadians?

Posted August 25, 2021 by Ben

On August 9th 2021, Canada opened its border to all fully vaccinated Americans allowing tourists from the United States to visit the country once again. The US border remains closed to Canadians, however, and American authorities recently extended the border closure until September 21st citing COVID-19 transmission rates south of the border as well as […]

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General

Saturday Stories: Ending Respiratory Illnesses, Collapsing Medical Systems, And Sick Societies

Posted September 11, 2021 by Yoni Freedhoff

Sarah Zhang, in The Atlantic, on putting an end to all respiratory viruses (not just COVID)
Vishal Khetpal, in Slate, on the collapse of the American medical system.
Jay S. Kaufman, in The New York Times, explains how sick societies trump science and …

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General

Saturday Stories: Wellness Conspiracies, Libel Chill, And The Air We Breath

Posted October 23, 2021 by Yoni Freedhoff

Eva Wiseman, in The Guardian, on the overlap between wellness/spirituality and conspiracy theories.
Stephanie Lee, in Buzzfeed, on how the world’s most prominent hydroxychloroquine researcher/crusader is trying to punish one of the world’s foremost sc…

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General

Today’s News: peek-a-boo!

Posted November 21, 2021 by Anonymous

The parrot is making fun of him! 🤣🤣pic.twitter.com/98HUbWrkdP— Figen (@TheFigen) November 19, 2021 They used to laugh and call him names.Not anymore. pic.twitter.com/sYEGmlGKqb— Cory Papineau (@Iam_Canadian) November 15, 2021 This one was fascinating…

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General

Saturday Stories: Omicron’s Teaching, COVID’s Teaching, And Teaching LeBron

Posted January 1, 2022 by Yoni Freedhoff

Andrew Joseph and Helen Branswell, in STAT, on the lessons we’re learning from Omicron.
More Helen Branswell, in STAT, on 10 lessons she’s learned covering the pandemic.
Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, in his Substack, helps LeBron James understand the differenc…

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General

Saturday Story: Ed Yong on Omicron

Posted December 18, 2021 by Yoni Freedhoff

Ed Yong, the best science journalist of this pandemic, in the Atlantic, discusses Omicron and how we’re definitely not ready for it. It’s so good it’s the only story I’m posting this week. 
      Related StoriesSatur…

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Energy

New Reports Allege Texas Oil and Gas Regulator’s Lax Enforcement

Posted January 27, 2022 by Anonymous

When a Canadian company started drilling for oil and gas near Jim and Sue Franklin’s ranch in a small Permian Basin town called Verhalen, Texas, it didn’t bother the couple too much at first. But Sue suspects that it was the third well that started causing problems.  “They put up these big signs that said, […]

The post New Reports Allege Texas Oil and Gas Regulator’s Lax Enforcement appeared first on DeSmog.

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General

Saturday Stories: Bad Studies, 5-12s’ Vaccinations, And Childism

Posted October 30, 2021 by Yoni Freedhoff

James Heathers, in The Atlantic, on how the house of cards upon which ivermectin studies were built likely underpins much of science. 
Katherine Wu, in The Atlantic, with a Q&A with pediatrician and vaccine researcher Sallie Permar about the …

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General

Festivus, and other great Christmas moments

Posted December 24, 2021 by Anonymous

“Stop crying and fight your father”

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General

Saturday Stories: Airborne Silence, The Next Pandemic, And Fertility

Posted October 2, 2021 by Yoni Freedhoff

Joe Vipond, Kashif Pirzada, and Danielle Cane, in The Toronto Star, on how Canada’s culture of silence around airborne transmission has led to confusion and undoubtedly, to avoidable illness and death.
Ed Yong, in The Atlantic, on the lessons we shoul…

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General

Twas the night before a Covid Christmas!

Posted December 17, 2021 by Anonymous

 As seen on Facebook:A Covid ChristmasTwas the night before Christmas, but Covid was here,So we all had to stay extra cautious this year.Our masks were all hung by the chimney with careIn case Santa forgot his and needed a spare.With Covid, we cou…

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General

Today’s News: Its high school all over again

Posted September 23, 2021 by Anonymous

Joe Biden said something nice about Australia and then Canada immediately gets the vapours? We really are still living in high school, aren’t we:

Proportional representation anyone?

Well observed!

Funny:

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General

Today’s news: random funny stuff

Posted December 6, 2021 by Anonymous

COVID has convinced us of this truth: I’m wearing this when I teach evolutionary medicine next week. pic.twitter.com/E2wCQyTs1u— Daniel Bolnick (@DanielBolnick) November 22, 2021 😂 True! 🇨🇦❄️🇨🇦❄️🇨🇦❄️🇨🇦 https://t.co/xgdoYTtc2n— Jacinthe Payant – Jane G…

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Energy

Earthquakes. Drought. Geysers. Permian Oilfield Water Woes Pile up in West Texas

Posted January 24, 2022 by Sharon Kelly

At 8:00 a.m. Eastern on January 21, a magnitude 3.4 earthquake shook Culberson County in West Texas midway between Odessa and El Paso, the U.S. Geological Society reported. That’s the kind of earthquake that’s generally strong enough to be felt, but not rattling enough to cause damage. Texas is not known for its seismic activity […]

The post Earthquakes. Drought. Geysers. Permian Oilfield Water Woes Pile up in West Texas appeared first on DeSmog.

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USA Border
General

US Land Border Opens to Canadians

Posted November 8, 2021 by Ben

After being closed for nearly 19 months due to the COVID-19 pandemic, on November 8th 2021 the United States land border officially opened to all fully vaccinated Canadians. US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has announced they will be staffing their border at pre-pandemic levels, but warns that wait times may be longer than in […]

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General

Today’s News: Next year country

Posted October 4, 2021 by Anonymous

Well, the boys gave it a good try, but couldn’t quite get into the post-season this year:

Now that Trudeau has apologized to Chief Rosanne Casimir in Kamloops about not attending their ceremony on Sept 30, I think the Canadian media will stop talking about Tofino-gate or whatever we are calling it. Embarrassment is what I call it

Some of today’s funnier stuff too:

Watch until the end:

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General

Saturday Stories: Hygiene Theatre, The Lost Plot, Caving To Antivaxxers, And a Brief Announcement From Me

Posted November 6, 2021 by Yoni Freedhoff

Justin Ling, in Macleans, on the persistence of hygiene theatreSarah Zhang, in The Atlantic, on how we’ve lost the plot on COVID.Andre Picard, in The Globe and Mail, on how now is the worst time for governments to be catering to antivaxxersAnnouncement…

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International travel
General

Where Can Vaccinated Canadians Travel?

Posted July 1, 2021 by Ben

Most Canadians are now fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Consequently, Canadians are starting to think about international travel again, and are beginning to research possible vacation destinations. This leads to the question, which countries can a fully vaccinated Canadian visit? As of July 2021, Canadian citizens who have received two doses of the Pfizer, Moderna, or […]

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General

Time for some funny stuff!

Posted October 13, 2021 by Anonymous

I loved these:

And this one was so sweet it broke twitter – it got 700K likes:

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General

Today’s news: Soothing the savage b(r)east

Posted September 29, 2021 by Anonymous

What is it with these guys? Today we learned that White House staff were soothing Trump’s rages by playing show tunes he liked: Trump’s handlers designated a White House official known as the “Music Man” to play him his favorite show tunes, includ…

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General

Christmas fun

Posted December 25, 2021 by Anonymous

Glenn Miller, with the Modernaires, Dorothy Dandridge and the Nicholas Brothers. Nominated for the Oscar:    And more Nicholas Brothers, with Tex Beneke, Marion Hutton and the Modernaires. Another Oscar nominee:  The silent monks:&n…

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Energy

Why Words Matter in the Fight Against Climate Change

Posted January 19, 2022 by guest

By Tara Lohan, The Revelator. This story originally appeared in The Revelator and is part of Covering Climate Now, a global journalism collaboration strengthening coverage of the climate story. Do we generate energy from windmills or wind turbines? Your answer could say a lot about your views on climate change, explains Genevieve Guenther. Guenther used to be an English […]

The post Why Words Matter in the Fight Against Climate Change appeared first on DeSmog.

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Energy

While Exxon Touts Net-Zero Promise, its Huge Plastics Complex Goes Online in Texas

Posted January 27, 2022 by Julie Dermansky

The same day ExxonMobil announced its ambition to achieve net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050, word spread that its mammoth plastics manufacturing complex near Corpus Christi, Texas, had begun production.  “We are up and operating. We have been for a while,” Paul B. Fritsch, site manager for ExxonMobil’s joint venture with Saudi Basic Industries Corp, (SABIC), told the governing body of the Port […]

The post While Exxon Touts Net-Zero Promise, its Huge Plastics Complex Goes Online in Texas appeared first on DeSmog.

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General

In Yet Another Win, Bariatric Surgery Reduces Cancer Risk In Long Term Study

Posted December 2, 2021 by Yoni Freedhoff

Before you read any further know that I’m NOT a surgeon.
I think it could be fairly argued that as far as surgical impact and benefits go, there are few that rival bariatric surgery.
Shown to prolong life, regularly push many chronic diseases includin…

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Exercise

2021’s Dumbest Scientifically Published Exercise Recommendation For The Treatment Of Obesity

Posted November 11, 2021 by Yoni Freedhoff

[First written blog post since March 2020. What an awful 20 months. Though the pandemic is certainly not over yet, it feels like it’s time to start writing again. Not sure what the frequency of posts will be, but it’s nice to be back]I wouldn’t have be…

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Energy

EU Investigating Agribusiness Lobby Group Copa-Cogeca Over Potential Transparency Breach

Posted January 25, 2022 by Anonymous

The European Union is investigating a powerful farming industry group which no longer officially declares its lobbying budget, DeSmog can reveal. Campaigners at transparency advocacy group Corporate Europe Observatory sparked the probe through a formal complaint to the EU last month, arguing that both parts of the European agricultural body Copa-Cogeca failed to provide accurate […]

The post EU Investigating Agribusiness Lobby Group Copa-Cogeca Over Potential Transparency Breach appeared first on DeSmog.

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General

Saturday Stories: The Health-Care Workers, The Fight To Call It Aerosol, And Narratives, Counter-Narratives, And Social Drama

Posted November 20, 2021 by Yoni Freedhoff

Ed Yong, in The Atlantic, covers the devastating impact managing patients with COVID has had on the world’s health-care workers many of who are calling it quits.
Megan Molteni, in Wired, on the teensy tiny error that helped COVID kill by creating a fi…

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Energy

Jordan Peterson’s Climate Expert is Science Denier Funded by Oil-Backed Think Tank

Posted January 28, 2022 by Anonymous

The source for author Jordan Peterson’s recent claim that climate change cannot be modelled was a climate science denier who received money from a libertarian think tank funded by oil companies.  The Canadian psychologist was widely criticised for spreading climate misinformation this week after telling the popular Joe Rogan podcast’s 11 million subscribers that climate […]

The post Jordan Peterson’s Climate Expert is Science Denier Funded by Oil-Backed Think Tank appeared first on DeSmog.

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General

Today’s news: So maybe next year our TRC Day will actually be about Truth & Reconciliation?

Posted October 2, 2021 by Anonymous

Does anyone else find it rather odd that the Trudeau in Tofino story is now on its second day? Ridiculous. 

But the pearl-clutching sure did help Canadian media find an easy story hook for their TRC Day coverage  — otherwise, hey, they might have had to talk to some Indigenous leaders and do some research and think about truth and reconciliation, and maybe, you know, even write news stories about all that uncomfortable stuff.  But then Trudeau flew to Tofino and the media butterflies fluttered – or should I say, flitted – right after him and this solved all their TRC Day news problems. 
Maybe by TRC Day 2022 we will actually focus on truth and reconciliation itself — though I’m not holding my breath.  

There are many other important things that Canadians to talk about:

Go Jays! Here’s the Blue Jays logo done by an Indigenous artist Kory Parkin who has other wonderful artworks as well.

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General

Saturday Story: Again Just One And Again It’s Omicron

Posted December 25, 2021 by Yoni Freedhoff

Katherine J. Wu, Ed Yong, and Sarah Zhang, in The Atlantic, on how our response to Omicron to date represents all of our past mistakes on fast forward.
      Related StoriesSaturday Story: Ed Yong on OmicronSaturday Storie…

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General

Election Follies and Funnies #27: Endorsement-paloosa

Posted September 18, 2021 by Anonymous

First Trudeau gets two high-profile endorsements:

Then Singh gets one as well:

And even O’Toole gets the pardonned felon nod:

Some reactions:

The Beaverton gets it again:

Except for the Manitoba chiefs endorsing Liberal candidate Shirley Robinson (in front of Singh, at that priceless press conference!) I think Canada’s First Nations leadership has been walking a fine line, I think to avoid problems with provincial issues across the country. Former AFN chief Phil Fontaine does endorse Trudeau today:

Work is continuing on lifting the boil water orders as the most intractable problems are getting resolved one by one:

Here are some priorities that Canadian Aboriginal organizations want to discuss with the next government. New AFN chief RoseAnne Archibald tweeted this priorities document on its priorities for the next government:

And the BC chiefs are sending this Open Letter:

Here’s a few more tweets from today:

Canadians are starting to try to evaluate this whole election experience, to figure out what it all means, too:

Late news tonight — from Frank Graves at EKOS –

A call to arms:

Here’s a thread for strategic voting:

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