10 Sunday Reads

Avert your eyes! My Sunday morning look at incompetency, corruption and policy failures:

Trump called aides hours before Capitol riot to discuss how to stop Biden victory Trump on the afternoon of 6 January. Multiple sources described Trump’s involvement in the effort to subvert the election result. Donald Trump on the afternoon of 6 January. Multiple sources described Trump’s involvement in the effort to subvert the election result. Sources tell Guardian Trump pressed lieutenants at Willard hotel in Washington about ways to delay certification of election result. (The Guardian)

Years of Delays, Billions in Overruns: The Dismal History of Big Infrastructure The nation’s most ambitious engineering projects are mired in postponements and skyrocketing costs. Delivering $1.2 trillion in new infrastructure will be tough. (New York Times)

Your Herbs and Spices Might Contain Arsenic, Cadmium, and Lead CR tested 126 products from McCormick, Trader Joe’s, Whole Foods, and other popular brands. Almost a third had heavy metal levels high enough to raise health concerns. (Consumer Reports)

The Third Force: On stupidity and transcendence “Stupid” doesn’t mean unintelligent or even uninformed. Stupidity is a denial of reality to the degree that one’s own survival, to say nothing of the survival of others, is imperiled. Stupidity is oblivious to negative consequences; it falls into a pit. Gross stupidity invites negative consequences; it looks for a pit. There’s an element of willfulness to it: let the oceans rise, let the virus rage, you can’t scare me.  (Harper’s Magazine)

Jared Kushner’s Saudi Ass-Kissing and Murder-Excusing Is About to Pay Off. The former first son-in-law is poised to receive a very large check from his Saudi pals, and all he had to do was let them get away with murder. (Vanity Fair)

Jesus Wept: Are Christians hurting Christianity? Even if the church should hold itself to higher standards, on account of whom it purports to be representing, why would it be more infallible than any other institution? For it can only be as perfect as its most imperfect members. And since there is no such thing as a perfect member, it’s only a matter of time before the law of averages catches up. (Slack Tide)

Sunshine Soldiers: Ron DeSantis has a plan to fight extreme weather. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis wants to reestablish a World War II-era civilian military force that he, not the Pentagon, would control. But sure, it’s about “hurricane response,” because what you really need to deal with hurricanes is 200 dudes with guns who answer only to the governor. (The Bulwark)

A colossal flop — fawning media can’t save Chris Christie’s new book “He left New Jersey as the most unpopular governor since the advent of polling. But he’s still catnip to the national media.” Part of the avalanche of eager Christie coverage represent a relentless sub-genre of Beltway journalism that clings to the fantasy that there’s still a functioning faction of the Republican Party that can and will stand up to Trump’s erratic and dangerous behavior. (PressRun)

The Mantra of White Supremacy The idea that anti-racist is a code word for “anti-white” is the claim of avowed extremists. (The Atlantic)

A tale of two thefts In the United States, only certain types of theft are newsworthy. (Popular Information)

Be sure to check out our Masters in Business interview this weekend with John Doerr of Kleiner Perkins. Doerrr has backed some of the most successful tech start-ups, including Compaq, Netscape, Symantec, Sun Microsystems, Amazon.com, Intuit, Macromedia, and Google. He is also the author of the best-selling Measure What Matters; his latest book is Speed & Scale: An Action Plan for Solving Our Climate Crisis Now.


The refusal to take vaccines has fallen everywhere apart from the US where holdouts are 15-20% throughout the pandemic

Source: Jim Reid, Deutsche Bank


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