• Neowise is growing dimmer, so if you get the chance, take the opportunity to see one of the solar system’s great shows, a comet close enough to be seen, tail and all, with the naked eye. I took this last night at Sepiessa.
Though I often disagree with Brett Stephens, I certainly am in accord with the main thrust of his most recent opinion piece in the NYT – Donald Trump IS indeed our national catastrophe, a man who generally acts with malice toward all and charity for none: Donald Trump is Our National Catastrophe. These words from the column also resonated with me: “What does one learn when reading great political speeches and writings? That well-chosen words are the way by which past deeds acquire meaning and future deeds acquire purpose.” Among his many other failings, Trump can’t ever seem to find well-chosen words.
• An exploration of why the Canadian response to the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic is considerably better than the one in the US. HINT – it has something to do with leadership and a functioning national government: Canada succeeded on coronavirus where America failed. Why?
• I thought this was an outstanding, thorough, and accessible synthesis of the history and science of genetics, interwoven with stories that demonstrated points made and enlivened the read. I don’t know how Siddhartha Mukherjee could possibly find the time to work as a clinician and research and write both this book and The Emperor of All Maladies; however he managed it, they are outstanding reads. Brilliant work! The Gene, ISBN 978-1476733500.
• The U.S. Approach to Public Health: Neglect, Panic, Repeat.
From a NYT Opinion column by Jeneen Interlandi: “A once-in-a-century public health crisis is unfolding, and the richest country in the world is struggling to mount an effective response. Hospitals don’t have enough gowns or masks to protect doctors and nurses, nor enough intensive care beds to treat the surge of patients…Nearly all of these problems might have been averted by a strong, national public health system, but in America, no such system exists.
Time to give new life to an old idea: A strong public health system is the best guarantor of good health.”