Friends, the time has come for us to bring Extra! Extra! to a close. I know Natalie, Rachel and I have really valued the space this column has afforded us over the last eighteen months to share our thoughts and ruminations, our hopes and frustrations about everything that’s happening in the world. More than that, I’ve learned so much from so many of you, who have thoughtfully and kindly shared your knowledge about the news and politics of what’s happening where you live and the work you do.
Even though this chapter of our news and politics coverage is drawing to a close, I know that Natalie and I will be back here in other ways, in other forums and venues to discuss these issues with you. I imagine it would be impossible for either of us not to. And so, on that note, I leave you with one final round up of some of the news from the last month.
Science Confirms: the Climate Catastrophe Is Upon Us
Big Tech, Destroying Lives Globally and Personally
The Pegasus Project was a massive uncovering of how governments around the world are using an app called Pegasus to surveil civilians, political opponents, activists, journalists — you name it. In addition to this piece by the Washington Post that provides the overall context, the deep dives from the Guardian about how specific countries have used the app have been incredibly horrifying. This is probably among the most unsettling things I’ve read in a while and sadly, it seems, that after the news broke media and political coverage have largely moved on.
The Fall of American Democracy
Delta COVID Ravages
An estimated 4 million people died of COVID in India, and while that count is from the beginning of pandemic, I don’t think it’s false to presume that a staggering majority of those deaths probably happened in spring 2021 when the Delta variant first appeared and ravaged India. I cannot even begin to put in words how incredibly maddening it has been to watch the rampant spread of Delta in America and in the West because, simply put, too many people refuse to get vaccinated. The Western world has had the audacity to hoard vaccines (and is now even talking of issuing booster shots) and then not use them, while the rest of the world dies en masse. Shameful is really the only word that comes to mind.