Staked out positions

Happy Monday!

Heather Kelly provides a short but helpful list of home help desk tasks we should be on top of. (Have you tried turning it off and on again?)

I assume that the OPAT isn’t in the tank for the police. And yet it also isn’t finding lots of misconduct. The reaction from police critics is predictably strained.

Elon Musk and the Twitter board have been negotiating all weekend. We may learn today about a deal.

Apple Pay‘s, tap to pay, could soon work both ways. Tap to pay and tap to receive. Convenient.

And some people are concerned about unhealthy fast food coming to Mattapan Square. I guess if you want something healthy you could walk across the street to Simco‘s.


Marathon Monday.

Ahh, spring. Sadly, that means it’s shooting season, locally and around the country. (overflow)

I’ve been using email since before Gmail was invite-only and spam is worse now than it’s ever been. It’s a fire hose. Unsubscribing doesn’t work in many cases (I’m talking to you MLB). Something has to give.

Billy Baker surveys the woods. Old folk in New England still get excited when we see a deer or eagle.

Justin Franz goes planespotting with the aviation geeks.

And Better Call Saul, maybe the best TV series ever, is back today with the beginning of the end. You only have a few hours to catch up on Netflix.

Cops and robbers

Wednesday. It’s a birthday for Butch Cassidy, Seamus Heaney and Al Green.

Gilbert Gottfried has died. The Miles Davis of comedy.

Many Democratic cities are backtracking on defunding the police and instead are moving to hire more cops. It’s amazing what a couple of years and an increase in crime can do. And in Maryland, a last minute police reform bill has made everyone unhappy. Which means it’s probably solid policy.

Sam Tyler weighs in on an appointed vs. elected School Committee. As you might guess, the practical-minded Tyler favors the former.

The war in Ukraine looks, increasingly, like an ongoing conflict. The other war—the economic one—will continue on as well. Whether we’ll have the will to persist with it is yet to be seen.

And insider trading, crypto-style? Sure looks that way.

Polling Americans

A sanguine Sunday.

It’s the start of Squirrel Week. Hold onto your hat.

Are Americans really worried about rising crime. Gallup says yes. Concerns about crime are at their highest level !!! (…since 2016.) In reality, their data show that crime worries are down significantly from 2001. But, you know, headlines. Also, those patterns of partisan reaction to crime are pretty interesting.

So what would happen if Russia and the US engaged in a broad nuclear exchange? The good news is, we wouldn’t have to worry about global warming anymore.

Constructor Theory. It’s a new way to think about physics and natural laws. Here’s an introduction.

And Maureen Dowd is right to be concerned. How long can our attention span on Ukraine last in the face of another Kardashian wedding?

No comment

Monday. It’s a birthday for Maxim Gorky, Dan Dennett and Lady Gaga.

The big news at the Oscars was a slap.

Coleman Herman reports on a story about local scientists who felt they were misled by the Globe on their participation in a sponsored story paid for by tobacco company Phillip Morris. Sophisticated readers can easily spot these ads masquerading as legitimate reporting but you would have to assume that people fall for the trap, otherwise why are companies paying for them. Herman adds that the Globe did not respond to requests for comments.

More peace talks are scheduled for this week. There’s already an argument about what day they will start. Next they’ll have to agree to the shape of the table.

President Biden wants to distance himself from those who want to defund the police. His 2023 budget plan is a good start in that direction.

And Ted Widmer profiles Stu Sutcliffe, the Beatle that never got to Get Back.

Who, what, where, when and why

It’s Thursday, a stormy late-March day.

I guess Arnold must have hit a nerve.

A Globe story highlights the fallout after removing police from Boston schools. The author’s take is that evidence suggests removing city police from the schools was a mistake. Strangely conspicuous by its absence in the story was any mention of the Mayor’s longstanding position on the subject.

As Putin is backed into a corner, Peter Rosen, a professor of national security and military affairs at Harvard, plays out a few nuclear scenarios. Terrifying stuff.

Doom-scrolling is a hard habit to break. But at least there are rest stops along the way.

And rich people are getting worried about the economy. Good. Maybe now something will be done about it.

The Art Of The Possible

Monday, 2/28. A week begins and a month ends.

This archeological find is pretty cool. Nice juxtaposition with the Shard in the photo.

Michael Javen Fortner has been studying crime for years. He sees parallels in what’s happening today to what’s happened in the past and warns ‘professional’ and ‘amateur’ Democrats not to go too far astray.

The war in Ukraine, so far, appears to have been an ill conceived effort on Russia’s part—mostly spearheaded by an isolated Putin. It’s only been a week but even in that short time period the impact has been remarkable (see here and here) and not remarkably good for Russia.

“Tired of digging out in the wake of horrible winter storms? Disgusted with a poisoned political culture and a divided citizenry?” Charlie Flanagan wants to entice Irish Americans to come back home.

And some good news: at least you won’t have to charge that flip phone anymore.

Invading forces

Friday. It’s the anniversary of Khrushchev’s secret speech denouncing Stalin.

In Springfield, the question of who gets to pick the police commissioner—the mayor or the police oversight commission—was fought in court. The court ruled that the oversight commission gets to pick. But the mayor gets to pick the oversight commission. So there.

In Ukraine news this morning, Kiev is about to fall. Protests are being put down in Moscow. China is still sitting on the sidelines, as is India. Russian oligarchs are losing billions because of sanctions. (It’s hard for them to complain. The state giveth and the state taketh away.) And the new stars of Russian media are a couple of familiar faces.

Is this Columbia Point or Tahiti? Apparently there will be surfing on Dorchester Bay.

What will the war in the Ukraine do to the economy? A hike in oil could push inflation higher. But, as Neil Irwin writes: “Usually, geopolitical strife represents a short-term blip for financial markets and a buying opportunity for the gutsy. That could yet be the case with Ukraine, but the range of possibilities is ominous.”

And Apple AirTags are designed for finding lost items, not for tracking stolen ones. But they do a pretty good job at the latter, especially finding stolen bikes.

Led by the nose

Happy Sunday!

Dowd: Can Dems Dodge Doomsday?

Forensic linguists have identified the person, or persons, behind QAnon: Paul Furber and then, later, Ron Watkins. Two nobodies who were making it all up as they went along. But some of us already knew that.

Washington DC Police Chief Robert Contee was grilled by the City Council on his running of the department and on rising crime. As the Post notes, “Some of those same council members who two years ago supported a budget to cut police funds to confront crime as a public health crisis, which police say led to the smallest force in two decades, are facing an uprising of constituent anger, and some have now called for more investment in police.”

Scott Galloway is bullish on Apple. A trillion dollars in revenue?!? Too much.

And the astronaut pen featured on Seinfeld is a real thing. The Fisher Space Pen. Here it is in action.

Effectively progressive

A stormy Friday. Trees down and no power.

Here’s a full breakfast. You won’t even need coffee.

The Times looks at how voters have pushed back against progressive prosecutors around the country when crime began to increase. San Francisco, Manhattan, St. Louis, Philadelphia and Chicago are mentioned. But not Boston. Rachael Rollins certainly had her detractors but because crime didn’t rise here, that kind of opposition didn’t take hold. Credit her work with, not against, the police.

It’s budget season in city government. In Boston the process is going on the road.

If you’re waiting for your frozen-berry metallic Porsche or Bentley to arrive, you may have to wait a little bit longer. Thousands of luxury cars on their way across the Atlantic are burning in a cargo hold fire.

And if you’re tracking your sleep with some sort of device, poor sleep may be a forgone conclusion.