The monumental spread of Digital Mental Disorders  (DMDs) has never been so apparent as it is this morning.  Because while we have potentially  monumental news of possible First Contact with other worlds, the balance of the news flow remains as pathetic as last week’s.

Contact?

On the arXiv.org website, we have the abstract of a new paper on  a mysterious Fast Radio Bursts (FRBs) from space that is repeating every 16-days, or so.  What’s more, the abstract found  here, downplays the notion that this is a natural event:

Fast radio bursts (FRBs) are bright, millisecond-duration radio transients originating from extragalactic distances. Their origin is unknown. Some FRB sources emit repeat bursts, ruling out cataclysmic origins for those events. Despite searches for periodicity in repeat burst arrival times on time scales from milliseconds to many days, these bursts have hitherto been observed to appear sporadically, and though clustered, without a regular pattern. Here we report the detection of a 16.35±0.18 day periodicity from a repeating FRB 180916.J0158+65 detected by the Canadian Hydrogen Intensity Mapping Experiment Fast Radio Burst Project (CHIME/FRB). In 28 bursts recorded from 16th September 2018 through 30th October 2019, we find that bursts arrive in a 4.0-day phase window, with some cycles showing no bursts, and some showing multiple bursts, within CHIME’s limited daily exposure. Our results suggest a mechanism for periodic modulation either of the burst emission itself, or through external amplification or absorption, and disfavour models invoking purely sporadic processes.”

What this does is a couple of things.  First, it gives us the inkling that human-scale time (point, shoot, analyze) may be far too fast when looking at deep space radio sources.  Instead, look, point, and shoot again later (for at least 17-days) in order to find repeating sources, comes into focus.

One of the foibles of science is that it tends to be a “right here, right now” business.  This Abstract changes all that.

Since we now know (at least one) FRB has a long time-base, we have to wonder are there many more?

Second point:  Our extensibility gene kicks in.  How many  science projects throughout the course of “modern” science have missed life-changing breakthroughs and discoveries because we did a “point, shoot,analyze?”  Many things are fast, but where’s our search for slow?

Take psychic phenomena, for example.  People get tested for telekinesisi and the results are instantly tabulated.  Might there be real effects, but they just doesn’t show up for 16+_ (or however many) days afters the test subject’s work?

These kind of notions are (to my small mind/limited ways of thinking) VASTLY more important can the “front page snews” of the MainStream Media.  Anyone give a ripo about the crap in New Hampshire dirtytics? Yet, that’s the planet we live on.  Where there are only two viruses that matter right now.

Digital Mental Disorders *(lost people, looking to one another for clues – a terribly disappointing social media supported time-waster) is one.  And this other viral problem?  Well…

Wuhan: It’s Really Worse Than SARS

The numbers out of China continue very grim.  Admitted infections are 40,573 and the death toll is now 910.  And we would not be surprised to see deaths top 1,000 in tomorrow (or Wednesday’s) report.

While the rest of the world is in process of quickly “locking down China” the country’s leader for life is making speeches about the need to “win the people’s war” on the deadly virus.

Obviously, Xi Jinping is becoming worried about economic impacts as “China is shoring up businesses” during the outbreak.,  But, it’s hard to do that when people even suspected of having the virus are being rounded up and tossed into detention.

The problem becomes is we have no reliable figures on any of the cases now.  People in China who maybe just came down with a slight case of the sniffles from a seasonal cold, are being tossed into detention, which could turn into something akin to death camps.  Not our call to make. But, a terrible ethical decision.  Absent good care in these “camps” isn’t this a crime against humanity for those who don’t have the virus?

Meanwhile, however, we can do the math and it’s not good.  Given that there are 910 dead and 40,573 confirmed cases, that’s a 2.24 percent mortality rate.  Compare this with SARS:

“Between November 2002 and July 2003, an outbreak of SARS in southern China caused an eventual 8,098 cases, resulting in 774 deaths reported in 17 countries (9.6% fatality rate)”

Since  cases of Novel Coronavirus are already about five times the rate of SARS, we expect the eventually-admitted death toll could go much higher.  Well into the low thousands seems almost possible.  Although the government of China has a severe economic motivation to under-report everything.

Keep an eye on TenCent? Hope for another screen-snag?

Malpractice at the Oscars

One of the great drivers of modern progress as been the specialization of labor.  In other words, people get the most done with they “do what they’re good at.”

Naturally, when a film award like The Oscars comes out, I’d very much expect the recipients to have comments on the acting craft and compliments for those who were also nominated.  “ You remember in that scene where I…..”  followed by some insightful remarks would have been SO refreshing.

On Point Doesn’t Work

Instead, glad we missed what in the After Action Reports reads like a shit-slinging festival.  Take Bad Pitt, for example.  Calling out Senate republicans doesn’t contribute anything to his  acting profession.

We did like (and appreciate) the  NY Post’s hit on Juaquin Phoenix:  It was a night of Oscar Speeches For Dummies and Oscar Speeches By Dummies. quips what has become the last reliable newspaper in Gotham.

Oh, speaking of blow hards out west, did you catch where 209 mph gust recorded in California, potentially shattering record?  Did PG&E keep the lights on?

We live on a strange planet, indeed.  Where inhabitants work 60-hours a week in order watch train wrecks in their own living rooms and on mobile devices.  .

Markets: Time to Panic, Yet?

Stock futures were down a scosche. Click here before the open to see how much free money the NY Fred Trading Desk has made-up in repo’s and reverse repo’s to keep the action rolling.  Look again this afternoon, too, since they’ve been known to slosh in a bucket or two more at 1:15 PM Eastern, now and then.

Unanswered (like the radio bursts from space) is when does the market wake up to the idea that China is at least partly coming offline?  When will hotel and airline stocks collapse?  And will our tickets for a concert in May at a casino still be good?  We don’t like knowing the future…but here’s an interesting thought:

(Sick, but we have to ask….)  Are Pandemics  inflationary?  I mean think about this for a sec.  If 10% of the world population died…like next week…all their money and assets would still be around.  Presumably, they’d go to the hands of the greedy heirs, who would suddenly have more money than ever…and isn’t more money in the hands of fewer or equal numbers of people (given no change in utility value of goods) almost the postcard definition of  inflationary?

Go think long and hard about this.since the inflationary effects would be offset by businesses cratering.  Something to write your upcoming Nobel Prize in Economics paper about.  Next life, maybe.

Bubble’s away, though, as Tesla’s wild trading continues with the stock up 9% in premarket Monday.

Side Note:  I’m warming up to Elon Musk’s way of thinking, since he’s now aligned with our long-held “delete Facebook” sentiments.  Why,, that’s Gospel According to Ure so either Musk is getting smarter, or dumber…depending how you score things.  We think smarter.

Dredging the Dregs

Do as I say department?  Claim in the Moscow Times that Controversial Scholar Jordan Peterson Treated for Addiction in Russia, caught our eye.  Lots of powerful people don’t like straight-shooters like Peterson, so who knows what’s real.

Need an Uberly Lyft? Urban car usage will be overtaken by ‘greener transportation’ within a decade, research claims.  On the other hand, 20,000 survey people in 31 countries may be missing the point a bit.  What about us ruralites?

Rolling with Kona Blend this morning, so the jittery click-finger couldn’ty resis  Fortune’s Michael Pollan and ‘How Caffeine Created the Modern World’.

Off to run-down  some pigs…no blankets for ’em, but eggs will work just as well.

Write when you get rich,

george@ure.net

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