“The now prophetic words could be found buried at the end of a research paper published in the journal Clinical Microbiology Reviews in October of 2007: ‘The presence of a large reservoir of SARS-CoV-like viruses in horseshoe bats, together with the culture of eating exotic animals in southern China, is a time bomb.’ The warning — made nearly 13 years ago and more than four years after a worrying first wave of severe acute respiratory syndrome, or SARS, killed nearly 800 people globally — was among the earliest to predict the emergence of something like SARS-CoV-2, the virus behind the current pandemic of Covid-19.”
For Experts Who Study Coronaviruses, a Grim Vindication, by Charles Schmidt, Undark, 8 June 2020
“More than 600 University of Nebraska student-athletes are expected to return to campus for the fall semester. Like their peers, they will train to compete in their respective sports while presumably working toward a degree. They will don their school colors to perpetuate a billion-dollar industry without so much as receiving a living wage in return. But unlike other student-athletes around the country, each and every Husker — from the senior starting point guard to the redshirt javelin thrower — will have an entire team dedicated to helping them build and maximize their personal brands. In mid-March, the University of Nebraska and athlete marketing program Opendorse announced the launch of the Ready Now Program, a first-of-its kind partnership that will assist college athletes with individual branding to market themselves as social media influencers.”
Student-Athletes Will Soon Be Social Media Influencers. And One College Program Is Helping Them Do It., by Josh Planos, 538, 8 June 2020
“Some Facebook employees have publicly objected to Zuckerberg’s refusal to take down or label misleading or incendiary posts by Trump and other politicians. But Zuckerberg has so far refused. On Friday, Zuckerberg said in a post that he would review ‘potential options for handling violating or partially-violating content aside from the binary leave-it-up or take-it-down decisions’.”
More than 140 Zuckerberg-funded scientists call on Facebook to rein in Trump, by The Guardian, 6 June 2020
“But nearly a week later, we do at least know who won the major races on June 2. The biggest news came in Iowa’s 4th Congressional District, where Republican Rep. Steve King became the second incumbent congressman so far this year to lose in a primary.1 State Sen. Randy Feenstra defeated King by a healthy 10-point margin, 46 percent to 36 percent, and has likely punched his ticket to Washington in this deep-red district — President Trump carried it by 27 points in 2016. King is infamous for his racist and controversial comments, which came to a head last year when King wondered aloud why language such as “white supremacist” was offensive. The incident prompted Republican leadership to remove King from all House committees, which opened the door for Feenstra’s primary challenge attacking King as ineffective.”
What The June 2 Primaries Can Tell Us About November, by Nathaniel Rakich and Geoffrey Skelley, 538, 8 June 2020
“Now is not one of those times. George Floyd’s killing comes at a moment when America’s standing has never been lower in Europe. With his bigotry, misogyny, xenophobia, ignorance, vanity, venality, bullishness, and bluster, Donald Trump epitomizes everything most Europeans loathe about the worst aspects of American power. The day after Trump’s inauguration, there were women’s marches in eighty-four countries; and today, his arrival in most European capitals provokes huge protests. By his behavior at international meetings, and his resolve to pull out of the World Health Organization in the middle of a pandemic, he has made his contempt for the rest of the world clear. And, for the most part, it is warmly reciprocated.”
What Black America Means to Europe, by Gary Young, NY Review of Books, 6 June 2020
“As before, the company’s program combines a mission of getting youngsters busy reading and charity in the form of a 100,000 print-book donation (content from Scholastic) in July, a partnership with United Way Worldwide. For those familiar with the summer program from the past, there are several changes this year reflective of the public health emergency. For example, there’s no longer a naming of a “Best in State” school at the end of the program, and the “Top Public Library” has similarly been dispatched. The key new feature is a “Home Base” app (Android and iOS), moderated around the clock and allowing children to create avatars as they engage in reading activities.”
Coronavirus Impact: Scholastic Adjusts Its Summer Reading Program, by Porter Anderson, Publishing Perspectives, 8 June 2020
“‘I think Americans are not aware, or don’t have the experience, to realise what it means for the military to be out on the streets in charge of domestic security,’ Lewin said. ‘In Latin America, unfortunately, we do have a lot of experience with how that can lead to an authoritarian regime irrespective of the fact that Trump was democratically elected.'”
‘Trump is tearing apart America’: how the world sees the US protests, by Uki Goñi in Buenos Aires, Lily Kuo in Beijing, Jason Burke in Johannesburg, Tom Phillips in Rio de Janeiro, Sam Jones in Madrid, and Julian Borger in Washington, The Guardian, 7 June 2020
“These recent poetry collections offer poignant narratives and snapshots of racial injustice in America, from lasting testaments of systemic violence to a public appeal for the vital work that remains to be done as the country confront its legacy of racism and exploitation.”
An Antiracist Poetry Reading List, by Maya Popa, PW, 5 June 2020
“So at least 10 things will never be the same again, but among those that will not change:
“More books will be published. Sales will be hard to get but there will be bestsellers.
“Authors will jump from publisher to publisher for greener fields.
“Editors will change publishers for more money and more autonomy.
“New marketing wheezes will be developed.
“The publishing world will continue and thrive, as it always has, by creatively pushing water uphill.”
Richard Charkin: Ten Publishing Things That Will Never Be The Same, by Porter Anderson, Publishing Perspectives, 7 June 20203
“An open letter to the Poetry Foundation from a group of its fellows and programmatic partners and signed by more than 1,800 individuals issued in response to the organization’s June 3 statement on the killing of George Floyd and other current events calls for significant change at the organization. Specifically, the letter demands the immediate resignation of both Poetry Foundation president Henry Bienen and board of trustees chair Willard Bunn III. In addition, the letter lists several other demands:”
Poets Call for Change at Poetry Foundation, by John Maher, PW, 8 June 2020
“‘I cannot in any way support President Trump this year,’ Powell, who did not vote for the Republican president in 2016, told CNN. Asked if he would vote for Biden, he added: ‘I will be voting for him.’.”
Colin Powell endorses Joe Biden for US president, by Reuters via The Guardian, 7 June 2020
“Homewreckers, Aaron Glantz’s recent book about the investors who exploited the 2008 financial crisis, is essential reading as we plunge headlong into a new financial catastrophe. Glantz, a senior reporter for the Center for Investigative Reporting’s public radio show, Reveal, has written books on the mishandling of the Iraq War (How America Lost Iraq) and the neglect of veterans that followed (The War Comes Home). He observes that there are two ways a government can respond to a crisis caused by reckless speculation: by stepping in or by stepping aside. Roosevelt stepped in; Ronald Reagan, dealing with the savings-and-loan crisis, stepped aside. Starting in 1986, as a result of Reagan’s deregulation, countless savings-and-loan associations had run amok with other people’s money, taking risky bets; 747 of them imploded.1 But rather than restructuring the toxic debt, the Reagan administration sold it to “vulture investors,” those who profit off disaster by swooping in to gobble up the cheapest, most troubled assets from failing entities. The government sold at firesale prices with lucrative loss-share agreements: whatever money an investor recovered on the debt was its to keep, but losses would be guaranteed by the government. The deals cost the US government more than $124 billion in subsidies.”
The Housing Vultures, by Francesca Mari, NY Review of Books, 11 June 2020
“More than a thousand people showed up to support a procession and rally held at the Compton courthouse yesterday. The ‘Peace Ride’ was organized by the Compton Cowboys in support of George Floyd the Black Lives Matter movement. Over 100 Black horse riders showed up from all over Southern California to the protest.”
A Hundred Black Horse Riders Showed Up to Support the Compton Cowboys Peace Ride For Black Lives Matter, by Kemal Cilengir, LA Taco, 8 June 2020
Fiction reveals truth that reality obscures.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Fine manners need the support of fine manners in others.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Flowers… are a proud assertion that a ray of beauty outvalues all the utilities of the world.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
For centuries the death penalty, often accompanied by barbarous refinements, has been trying to hold crime in check; yet crime persists. Why? Because the instincts that are warring in man are not, as the law claims, constant forces in a state of equilibrium.
For every benefit you receive a tax is levied.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
For every minute you remain angry, you give up sixty seconds of peace of mind.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
For everything you have missed, you have gained something else, and for everything you gain, you lose something else.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
For fast-acting relief try slowing down.
For if there is a sin against life, it consists perhaps not so much in despairing of life as in hoping for another life and in eluding the implacable grandeur of this life.
For love would be love of the wrong thing; there is yet faith, But the faith and the love and the hope are all in the waiting.
“The black experience should not be identified with inwardness, as implied in Schleiermacher’s description of religion as the ‘feeling of absolute dependence.’ It is not an introspection in which one contemplates one’s own ego. Blacks are not afforded the luxury of navel gazing. The black experience is the atmosphere in which blacks live. It is the totality of black existence in a white world where babies are tortured, women are raped, and men are shot. The black poet Don Lee puts it well:
‘”The true black experience in most cases is very concrete . . . sleeping in subways, being bitten by rats, six people living in a kitchenette.’
“The black experience is existence in a system of white racism. The black person knows that a ghetto is the white way of saying that blacks are subhuman and fit only to live with rats. The black experience is police departments adding more recruits and buying more guns to provide “law and order,” which means making a city safe for its white population. It is politicians telling blacks to cool it or else. It is George Wallace, Hubert Humphrey, and Richard Nixon running for president. The black experience is college administrators defining “quality” education in the light of white values. It is church bodies compromising on whether blacks are human. And because black theology is a product of that experience, it must talk about God in the light of it. The purpose of black theology is to make sense of black experience.
“The black experience, however, is more than simply encountering white insanity. It also means blacks making decisions about themselves—decisions that involve whites. Blacks know that whites do not have the last word on black existence. This realization may be defined as black power, the power of the black community to make decisions regarding its identity. When this happens, blacks [page 25] become aware of their blackness; and to be aware of self is to set certain limits on the others’ behavior toward oneself. The black experience means telling whitey what the limits are. ”
Reverend James H. Cone, A Black Theology of Liberation, Chapter 2, pp 24-25, 1986 edition, 1st ed. 1970