Steering clear of the Monarchy

Please use a screen protector and wipe down all your emails before opening them, but the pandemic is over.

Steering clear of the Monarchy

Hey friends,

In the last few days, I've heard from a few readers, asking if I would be addressing the Monarchy, perhaps critically. And I have to say, I'm not sure I can.

I've never become a billionaire simply by being born, so far, so I'm just not sure I'm qualified to comment on something I know almost nothing about.

It's a tough topic for me because I've never had a job that was merely symbolic, that pays in the millions of dollars (or pounds for that matter) where I could not be fired by the people I work for.

I've really never been treated as a deity. Not by a large group of people anyway. Nor have I had any jobs where the qualifications were simply to have a specific father and for him to die. So I'm just not sure I'm qualified to comment on this topic.

So for the time being, I will not be criticizing the very outdated, seemingly pointless institution of the Monarchy.

(If you missed it, however, I wrote a glowing eulogy of The Queen when she passed away two weeks ago).

Anyway, I am qualified to comment on the subject of social media.  

I'll get to that in a minute...

But first, let's look at The News.

First, a little announcement.
Next week, I'll be posting the first chapter of my yet to be released book "Made From Leftovers". It's an extremely true story of a weird home-schooled kid (me) and his adventurous escape from poverty.

The chapter will be available for paying members only.

Hot Takes

Week 38 of 2022


On Wednesday, Russian President Putin announced he would mobilize 300k more soldiers by instituting a draft, which began immediately. Since then, Vladimir Putin's dinner plans were canceled by a guest with nothing more than a text "brb, fleeing the country!"

Across the country, protests broke out against the war, resulting in at least 1300 people being detained. Russia is swiftly seeing widespread panic, men fleeing, traffic jams, and plane ticket prices skyrocketing because of the mass exodus. In the meantime, Putin is beginning the process of referendums in occupied Ukrainian territory to vote to join Russia. Rumors circulated that Vladimir Putin winked at Donald Trump just before he said he will support the people's decision. (more)

House Rules

The House passed a bill to reform the Electoral Count Act, in order to prevent an election nightmare like the one we had on January 6th. The bill, as well as a Senate negotiated version ensures election certifications reflect the will of the voters and are basically boring. This might be why the only Republicans who supported the bill were those who were already leaving or voted out of Congress – because democracy has lost popularity. (more)

Power to the Puerto Ricans

Power went out for the whole state, or I mean the territory of Puerto Rico after Hurricane Fiona took its toll on the infrastructure. When I told them to call their representatives in Congress, I was quickly reminded they don't have any. But don't worry, President Biden has authorized financial support to get things back online. Despite the severity of the storm, it has been less deadly than what they have seen in the past. (more)

Spill the Tea

President Joe Biden showed up on 60 minutes to talk, but it ended up taking more like an hour. Biden announced he would step up to help the Puerto Ricans, he said we would back up Taiwan against a Chinese invasion and he declared the Pandemic was over. (more)

I Just Shipt Migrants

In an attempt to troll Democrats, Ron Desantis shipped several immigrants and shipped them to Martha's Vineyard. Since he didn't have his own immigrants for his human trafficking plan, he sent a bus into Texas and bribed them to hop on a bus to complete the prank, only to find out later that the joke was on him because the destination turned out to be nicer than where they came from – including in hospitality. A Sheriff in Texas opened a criminal investigation into the flights, and a class action lawsuit was filed on behalf of the group of migrants saying they were deceived. (more)

Serial Bowl

Podcasts are having a great week, and Adnan Syed is having an even better one since his sentence was vacated after spending 23 years in prison for a murder he maintains he did not commit. His story was made famous by the podcast Serial which also made podcasting mainstream, and True Crime as one of its top categories, just shy of the category "Joe Rogan". According to an updated episode of the 2o14 season, Adnan's case was thrown out because of the dicks that ran the case (dicks meaning detectives). Apparently, the case was handled so badly it took them 23 years to figure it out. (here's the Serial episode with a summary and updates)

Interest Rates

When it comes to interest rates, I'm not interested at all and my rate is F, but still, the feds are using what happens to be the biggest tool in their toolbelt (at least if you account for inflation) to continue cooling the economy. The fed increased rates again by 3/4ths of a percent. (more)

That's it for the news. Now here's The Gist.

Working for The Algorithm

The Gist

An essay about how sound bites win over sound thinking, and end up shaping our beliefs. Here's a preview.

Every Sunday morning, I wake up gently, without a care, other than the want for coffee, and some serenity. I find myself making my way out to the back patio, after preparing a pour-over, freshly ground, easy to sip on, hard to prove your tasting note accuracy. The flavors cascade through its dynamic character traits as every drop in temperature represents one degree of change. The morning fog seems as if it's still until you see it has fallen to the leaves where it sparkles, attaching itself to some kind of texture on every leaf, that can only be seen when you are still enough to see it, and the dew features it for you, illuminated by the wash of sun at just the right angle that the morning offers you.

The only person moving quickly is every other sucker in the world, out of my sight–definitely out of my mind. Hurried to get to work, church, or some family occasion. And the dog, who uses this time to fetch whatever ball is his newest inanimate friend, an activity that he takes pride in like his own little version of CrossFit, where he is both expending energy, and connecting socially while killing time and building a little street cred. He struts, to show his glutes if dogs have glutes, and if they do he's definitely going to lick them next. I would do the same if I were him. Strutting that is. Okay and the licking because that's what dogs do.

Before you know it, my serene morning will be interrupted by the noise of the jungle.

Pandemic's end

Ask The Lorem Ipsum

Hey Daniel,

I'm living in a bubble, with nothing more than regular deliveries of this newsletter updating me on the outside world. I was hoping you could bring me up to speed on one thing that I heard from Joe B., since his approval rating is making me wonder if I can rely on him for the facts. The other night he said the pandemic was over!? Did he stutter?

Stay safe, – A. Hermit

First of all, if you are reading this email, without wearing a mask, please use a screen protector and wipe down all your emails before opening them to ensure that they didn't carry any viruses with them. They say that coronavirus can live on surfaces like groceries for several hours and it's even longer on spam!

Look, there are still about 59,000 people a day being diagnosed with Covid, and about 400-500 of them die each day. There's still a risk of getting sick and ending up in the new Hocus Pocus movie.

If you do end up in a grave, there's not much we can do, but leading up to that, we have a lot of options. First of all, there are treatments for Covid that have proven successful if the disease is caught early, and the success rate is even higher if you get vaccinated, a protocol that the numbers prove is about the most successful medical advancement there is, and is safer and less invasive than getting a tattoo. But that won't make you invincible (the vaccine, not the tattoos) but it could make you look tough (the tattoos, not the vaccine).

What doesn't look tough is a mask. That doesn't mean it doesn't aid in reducing transmission, it just means you have to make a cost-benefit analysis on the results of a mask versus your looks. Here's where my math brings me – I want to be able to look myself in the mirror... and I can't do that with a mask covering me up. Between my vanity and the above treatment options, it feels pretty safe to live a normal life.

So is the pandemic over? Well, there's some stage where diseases become outbreaks and outbreaks become pandemics, then pandemics become endemics and endemics become a way of life. The thing about pandemics is that they never really start or end, we just get tired of talking about them.

Folks, that’s it for this week's issue. Have a great weekend!

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