Roll Out the Beryl

Beryl Blows Away Expectations

Shocking Supreme Court opinions aren’t the only things blowing minds this week. Hurricane Beryl is breaking records, causing damage, and confirming scientists’ worst fears. Does it seem early for hurricane news? Well, it is. And that’s part of what worries experts. “Yes, a tropical storm might form here or a modest hurricane there. But the really big and powerful hurricanes, which develop from tropical waves in the central Atlantic and roar into the Caribbean Sea, do not spin up until August or September when seas reach their peak temperatures. Not so this year, in which the Atlantic Ocean is boiling already. The seas in the main development region of the Atlantic have already reached temperatures not normally seen until August or September. This has led to the rapid intensification of Hurricane Beryl, which crashed through the Windward Islands on Monday and is now traversing the Caribbean Sea toward Jamaica. Beryl is, to put it mildly, a freak storm.” ArsTechnica: “It’s hard to communicate how unbelievable this is.” And recent SCOTUS decisions are connected to the Beryl hurricane story in ways that go beyond metaphor. Bloomberg (Gift Article): Supreme Court Gives Trump ‘Sword’ to Slash Biden’s Climate Rules.

+ “Hurricane Beryl reached Category 5 strength as it tore into the Caribbean on Monday, with sustained winds reaching 165 miles per hour. This marks the earliest point in the season on record that a tropical storm has reached this intensity.” Vox: Hurricane Beryl is the terrifying storm that scientists have been expecting.

+ “Beryl is rewriting the history books in all the wrong ways.” SciAm: Hurricane Beryl’s Unprecedented Intensification Is an ‘Omen’ for the Rest of the Season.


Rapid Dissent

“This nation was founded on the principle that there are no kings in America. Each, each of us is equal before the law. No one, no one is above the law, not even the president of the United States. [With] today’s Supreme Court decision on presidential immunity, that fundamentally changed for all practical purposes … I dissent.” Biden attacks Supreme Court immunity ruling as emboldening a lawless president. (Of course, this week, for better or worse, everyone is a lot more focused on Biden’s performance than his opinions.)

+ I covered the disturbing Court decision yesterday: Kingdom Come.

+ I Turned In My Insurrectionist Dad—How Can Trump Be Immune?

+ And now, due to the SCOTUS immunity ruling, the Trump hush money sentencing has been delayed.

+ A small silver lining. We will not get the trial we deserve before the election. But the Court left open a very real chance we’ll get a Jan 6 hearing to determine which of Trump’s acts were and were not official. And that hearing will have a lot of the evidence a trial would. NYT (Gift Article): Ruling Further Slows Trump Election Case but Opens Door to Airing of Evidence.


Chill Baby Chill

“New refrigerators, ovens and dishwashers come with all sorts of novel features — you can see your vacation photos on a screen on your fridge door, remotely monitor food temperature or connect your dishwasher to the internet. They’re also less expensive and more efficient than in decades past.” WaPo (Gift Article): Your fridge isn’t built to last. Here’s why. (My guess: So you’ll buy more fridges?)


Splat Bot

“What the companies are creating is technology that makes human judgment about targeting and firing increasingly tangential. The widespread availability of off-the-shelf devices, easy-to-design software, powerful automation algorithms and specialized artificial intelligence microchips has pushed a deadly innovation race into uncharted territory, fueling a potential new era of killer robots.” In Ukraine, AI Begins Ushering In an Age of Killer Robots. “Software that once helped a drone follow a snowboarder down a mountain can now become a deadly tool.” (This is one reason why I don’t snowboard.)


Extra, Extra

Right Around the Corner: Asking a candidate to step down for the greater good. It’s a discussion in the US. It’s happening in France. French election candidates withdraw in bid to block far right.

+ Crime Spree: A day after Steve Bannon reported to prison, Rudy Giuliani was officially disbarred in New York for Trump election interference efforts. If I’ve told you once I’ve told you a thousand times: If you want to get away with crimes, run for president.

+ Hungary Games: Viktor Orban, Putin’s greatest European ally, makes first trip to Kyiv since start of war. I’m not sure what this means, but it sure is interesting.

+ Copathetic: “Sometimes a worst-case scenario is visible to the naked eye. This one was plain to see in Gregg Berhalter’s grimace at the final whistle, in the assistant coach burying his face in both hands, in Malik Tillman sprawled on his back staring at the Missourian sky, in Christian Pulisic’s disbelieving look as he shuffled off the field.” The USMNT Has No Good Options After a Disastrous Copa América.

+ Leg Drop: “When an ant injures its leg, it sometimes will turn to a buddy who will help out by gnawing the leg off, effectively performing a lifesaving limb amputation.”


Bottom of the News

“Inside, display cases filled with coprolites — fossilized feces from animals that lived millions of years ago — line the walls. They range from minuscule termite droppings to a massive specimen that weighs 20 pounds.” An Arizona museum tells the stories of ancient animals through their fossilized poop. (Someday, that’s how we’ll tell the story of the Supreme Court’s recent decisions.)

+ “We have faced so much bullying and judgement … We know what everyone in the hobby horsing has been through … I think that is the main thing that pulls us together.” Why Finns are deadly serious about hobby horsing.

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