Loose Ends (186)

Last week the California Supreme Court upheld a lower court ruling that bees are “fish” for purposes of the Endangered Species Act and other water regulations. This is what happens when you appoint jurists who are not biologists.

Are we already headed into a worldwide recession/depression?

News item:

OPEC+ is set to consider Wednesday its sharpest production cut since the start of the pandemic to help prop up falling oil prices, a move that could put pressure on global economic growth.

The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its Moscow-led allies, collectively known as OPEC+, are weighing a reduction of more than 1 million barrels a day, delegates in the group said.

I suspect this means President Biden will completely drain our strategic petroleum reserve.

News item:

Ocean carriers are canceling dozens of sailings on the world’s busiest routes during what is normally their peak season, the latest sign of the economic whiplash hitting companies as inflation weighs on global trade and consumer spending. . .

Trans-Pacific shipping rates have plummeted roughly 75% from year-ago levels. The transportation industry is grappling with weaker demand as big retailers cancel orders with vendors and step up efforts to cut inventories. FedEx Corp. recently said it would cancel flights and park cargo planes because of a sharp drop in shipping volumes. On Thursday, Nike Inc. said it was sitting on 65% more inventory in North America than a year earlier and would resort to markdowns.

The erosion in global economic conditions, from the war in Ukraine to factory shutdowns in China, have dealt heavy blows to trade activity. The International Monetary Fund has cut its forecast for global growth in gross domestic product multiple times this year.

News item —first a popcorn shortage, and now this:

After a summer boom, domestic box office revenue for September 2022 plummeted to a projected $328.7 million, the worst showing for the month in a quarter of century, according to Comscore. The last time it was that low — excluding 2020, during the heart of the COVID-19 crisis — was in September of 1996 ($326.7 million).

Of course, an alternative explanation here is that Hollywood released a bunch of crappy movies that no one wanted to see.

Kamala, the gift that keeps on giving. Did you know that Kamala is very keen on Venn diagrams? Well she is:

And for the record, a compilation of her greatest motivational aphorisms:

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