“The Olympics is becoming an event that has not gained the public’s understanding.” That could be the understatement of the century as a huge percentage of the Japanese population opposes the Olympics being held during a Covid surge. While the words are understated, the actions are not. Toyota Cancels Tokyo Olympics TV Ads, CEO Won’t Attend Opening Ceremony. Meanwhile, several athletes have pulled out or been quarantined after testing positive.

+ The Olympics are just a metaphor for the broader Covid story. That’s true both globally: Rising cases cloud England’s coronavirus “freedom day”. (What we need freedom from is Covid). And nationally: Delta Is Driving a Wedge Through Missouri.

+ WaPo: In this summer of covid freedom, disease experts warn: ‘The world needs a reality check‘. (Experts. You know, the people who warned us the first time around, right before 4 million died.)

+ “Tennessee’s governor, Bill Lee, understood what was going on. Mr. Lee is vaccinated, but he refused to be photographed getting the shot — the Covid shot, that is: He did post a photo of himself getting a flu shot last November. ‘Getting a flu shot is more important than ever this year,’ his Twitter post read. ‘I got mine to help protect my granddaughters as we prepare to celebrate their first birthday.’ Not a word about protecting children from the deadliest pandemic in a hundred years. None of this was surprising. Mr. Lee is not a leader who actually leads so much as a politician who reads the room.” Margaret Renkl in the NYT (gift article): Dolly Parton Tried. But Tennessee Is Squandering a Miracle. (In Tennessee, thanks to Covid and the response to it, there are currently 12,544 fewer people in the room.)

+ Five Texas Democrats who fled state in protest test positive for Covid.

+ Here’s a poll that should scare you. One in five Americans believes the US government is using the COVID-19 vaccine to microchip the population. (Covid didn’t pick humans as targets by mistake.)