Thoughts & Essays

Reading List (5/7/21)

I got my second dose of the Moderna vaccine on Wednesday, so here’s looking forward to May 19, my Immunity Day. W00t!

I do advise trying to take the day after off, though. I thought I was cool yesterday, but the side effects hit me like a freight train yesterday afternoon and I was out of commission for the rest of the day. Feeling all right this morning, though.

At any rate, I will happily deal with feeling like garbage for a day if it means I don’t die of COVID, so get your shots, people.

Reading List

🕵️ Vox: Mysterious Havana syndrome attacks are now documented in the US

This story continues to fascinate me, probably because it’s getting so little traction in the news. Every once in awhile something bubbles up about it, but then everything goes silent again for months, which strikes me as a bit weird for a story that seems to be about US spies and diplomats being mysteriously attacked. And now apparently it’s happening right here in the States.

🦠 NPR: Children Now Account For 22% Of New U.S. COVID Cases. Why Is That?

Kids are going back to in-person school, adults are getting vaccinated, and the variants are considerably more contagious.

☣️ Buzzfeed News: Facebook Says Hateful Comments May Drive Starbucks From The Social Network

There’s a chance that Starbucks might delete its Facebook page because they’re tired of dealing with the Facebook hate parade from MAGA cultists and other nazis, and Facebook’s worried about it. This is kind of a big deal, because Starbucks spends a lot of money advertising with Facebook.

I’ve been keeping an eye on this sort of thing because I do social media marketing and I’ve also been dealing with a definite uptick in hateful, shitty comments, often from MAGA cultists and other nazis. It’s really endemic to the platform at this point. At my level things aren’t that bad, but I manage a small page. But it’s annoying enough, and bigger pages must be dealing with it in exponentially greater numbers. I wonder how toxic this platform has to get before it collapses?

⚕️ Wired: Covid Lockdowns Prevented Other Infections. Is That Good?

I’ve read this in a few places now. We all (mostly) avoided each other for a year, and as a result, mostly we didn’t get sick from your regular flus and colds. And at least on the flu front, that probably saved a lot of lives. But when it comes to colds and things, we might get hit really hard when we start mingling again, because our immune systems didn’t have to deal with that crap for a year and a half.

👨‍💼 Mediaite: Washingtonian Staff Revolts After CEO Seems to Threaten Their Jobs if They Don’t Return to Office

The CEO of The Washingtonian wrote an op-ed in the Washington Post that basically said, to her staff, “Fuck y’all, if you don’t come back into the office when I say so I’ll turn you into contractors, cut your pay, and take your benefits away from you,” and then had to rapidly back pedal when her staff went on a mini-strike.

We’re seeing a lot of employer/employee upheaval happening right now. Restaurants can’t find workers because they pay poverty wages with no benefits and a crap work environment and no one wants to risk their life for that. Other low-wage jobs are having the same problem. Some factories are having that issue because even though the pay is slightly better, it’s still a lot of the same situation.

A lot of workers went remote and discovered they loved it, and now bosses want those workers back in the office, and the way the bosses are going about it, what they’re saying and doing, seems to indicate that what they really want is people back under their thumbs so they can micromanage everything again. And employees are realizing that and bailing on those jobs for new, permanently remote jobs where they don’t have to deal with that.

It’ll be interesting to see what, if anything, changes, and how hard the employer class works to get everything back to their “normal.”

Okay, that’s enough for the week. Here, watch this cute bunny helping to make the bed, then go enjoy your weekend.