Munday Mosings

I have to say that I am impressed with Carvana. We signed the paperwork to sell the Cascada yesterday, a Sunday. The payment for the car was in my bank account by 5 AM local time. (Yes, I was up at that hour. I usually am.)

It’s just one transaction, but Carvana seems to be able to function when so many American companies are unable to do so. Again, I wish they sold “classic” cars, but I am not buying anything in the near future, anyway.


Some photos to start the week:



No points for guessing where we had lunch yesterday.



The cloud in the center looks like a big head to me. I never said I was sane.



A link to a CNBC piece that warmed my heart: “Facebook scrambles to escape stock’s death spiral as users flee, sales drop.” Laura Martin, an analyst at Needham, said, “I’m not sure there’s a core business that works anymore at Facebook.”

Fack Fucebook!


Not all automobile executives are jumping on the EV bandwagon. In another article that brightened my day, this piece from Hagerty reported on Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda’s continuing skepticism over “pie in the sky mandates” such as the one issued by California in August, six days before asking EV owners to reduce their charging because the grid couldn’t handle it. What the hell, here’s a big chunk of the article:


“Speaking with reporters during a dealer meeting in Las Vegas, Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda expressed skepticism over pie-in-the-sky mandates such as California’s total ban of gasoline-powered cars in the state by 2035, according to a report from Automotive News. The mandate, which was recently adopted by Washington state and even more recently New York state, doesn’t seem possible, according to Toyoda. “Realistically speaking, it seems rather difficult to achieve that,” he said. Electric vehicles are “Just going to take longer than the media would like us to believe,” he continued.”

“This isn’t the first time that Toyoda poked holes in what many believe to be the future of the automobile. In September of last year, Akio Toyoda expressed similar skepticism about the inevitability of autonomy as well as the electric revolution. While automakers [are] continuing to chase more efficient and eco-friendlier EVs, Toyoda’s remarks feel like a welcome reality check for the prevailing market forces that seem to think the various issues with EVs—where the materials come from and the rising costs of battery vehicles in general, to name a few—will magically sort themselves out in a few short years.”


A welcome reality check, indeed.


Another CNBC article, this one about the 10 least popular US states to move to. Only one state surprised me on the list.


The 10 least popular states to move to in 2022:

  1. New Jersey
  2. California
  3. Illinois
  4. New York
  5. Connecticut
  6. Utah
  7. Maryland
  8. Rhode Island
  9. Louisiana
  10. Virginia


Utah was first in percentage gain in population among all states from 2010 to 2020 so its inclusion here is surprising to me. States 1-5 are all high tax jurisdictions. When they can, people vote with their feet. In a federal republic states are allowed to have different tax regimes. I have lived in two of these ten states and would NEVER live in either one again.








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Tuesday Territory

Many thanks to David Banner (not his real name) for his medical consult yesterday. He and I have known each other since freshman year of high school, which is, scarily, not too far from being 50 years in the past.


As an addition to yesterday’s post about Israel removing its mask mandates because of its very successful vaccination efforts, friend and former neighbor MB sent me an email with reasons to appreciate Israel. I don’t know the source and I cannot vouch for the accuracy of these statements, but even if not all of them are true, this is an impressive list of achievements by a country whose population would not rank among the top ten in the US if it were a state.



*Israel’s Technological Contributions to our Health*

Israelis do not make islands in the shape of palm trees, nor towering
skyscrapers, nor expensive hotels, nor do their leaders use cars with solid
silver bodies (a clear allusion to Dubai and the United Arab Emirates).

The pride of the State of Israel is that its technologies will soon be able
to be used by all humanity:

The University of Tel Aviv is developing a nasal vaccine that will
protect people from Alzheimer’s and stroke.

Technion, Institute of Technology (Haifa), developed a simple blood test
capable of detecting different types of cancer.

The Ichlov Center (Tel Aviv) has isolated a protein that makes
colonoscopy unnecessary to detect colon cancer with a simple blood test.
Colon cancer kills about 500,000 people annually.

The Given Imaging Laboratory has developed a tiny camera in the form of
pills that are swallowed and that transmit thousands of photos of the
digestive tract.  These high quality photos (2 per second for 8 hours) can
detect polyps, cancers and sources of bleeding.  The photos are sent to a
chip that stores them and sends them to a computer.  At the end of the
process, the camera is eliminated by the rectum.

The Hebrew University (Jerusalem) has developed an electrical
neurostimulator (batteries) that is implanted in the chest of patients with
Parkinson’s, similar to a pacemaker.  Emissions from this device block
nervous signals that produce tremors.

The simple odor of a patient’s breath can detect whether a patient has
lung cancer.  The Russel Berrie Institute for Nanotechnology has created
sensors capable of perceiving and registering 42 biological markers that
indicate the presence of lung cancer without the need for biopsy.

It is possible to dispense with catheterization in many cases.  Endopat
is a device placed between the index fingers, which can measure the state
of the arteries and predict the possibility of a heart attack for the next
7 years.

Bar Ilan University is studying a new drug that fights viruses by
blood.  It is called the Vecoy Trap because it tricks a virus into
self-destruction.  Very useful to fight Hepatitis, and in the future AIDS
and Ebola.

It is possible that Israeli scientists at Hadassah Medical Center
(Jerusalem) discovered the first cure for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis,
known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, in an orthodox rabbi.  Stephen Hawking, a
famous British scientist, suffered from this disease and to communicate he
used methods invented by Israeli scientists.



Israel has more companies listed on the Nasdaq Stock Exchange than any other country except the US. The hateful view of Israel by extremists on the left and right in the US is a disgusting manifestation of ignorance, anti-Semitism and jealousy. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.


Regular reader and commenter Philip Maynard sent me this link to an article about the drawbacks of electric vehicles. While the Tesla that was part of a fatal crash in Texas may or may not have been in Autopilot mode, it is true that electric vehicle fires are much more difficult to extinguish than fires from ICE powered cars. That was one drawback listed in the article. Here are a few more:


If you own an electric car, you can forget going to your local shop or fixing it inexpensively. Regardless of the type and the model, all-electric vehicles require specific maintenance and service procedures as well as extremely high safety standards.

When it’s freezing outside, electric vehicles are notorious for displaying specific problems. One of the most common issues is the loss of battery power. It’s similar to old cell phones that would stop working once you took them out of your pocket in the winter.

To fully understand the range problem of modern electric vehicles, you have to comprehend the energy consumption circle. The advertised range that many manufacturers brag about is the average or city driving figure. However, the highway range is much smaller, sometimes up to 50 percent less. The reason is that electric vehicles get a lot of energy from regenerative braking, which is the process of getting some power back from stopping or coasting. During city driving, you use your brakes a lot, which reduces your energy consumption. However, while driving on the highway, there is far less or even no braking so the batteries drain quickly.


While adding solar arrays to EVs can help with highway range, they’re not very useful at night. The zealots can dream of an all-electric vehicle fleet by 2030, but it’s just a dream.







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