We bring you the best coverage of Covid-19, posts about face masks everywhere, how to earn extra miles on groceries, we go aboard the Diamond Princess nightmare, Warren Buffett AMA, banks are trying to get us all to spend more in these pandemic times, we learn about ghost airline Air Sinai, go around the world in livestream cameras, check out Do Not Disturb signs around the world, visit a unique hotel in Uruguay, what to do if you lose a spouse, meet the crappy world of dropshipping wannabes, revisit an amazing story about some murders in Texas and ponder if an innocent man was executed, see the state of press freedom while our buffoon President calls the press the enemy of the people like Stalin who he probably never heard of, a crazy dude running a marathon every day, getting some unsolicited but good advice because I care for you, see how a fellow hobbyist gave up on the hobby and probably think harder if we all should do the same and more while looking for a conversion like a guy with the remote trying to find a live event on ESPN that is not ridiculous…See you Friday, keep the faith.
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Is it just me or is Bill Gates becoming THE authority figure to listen to in these pandemic times or what? Must read update from Bill on What you need to know about the COVID-19 vaccine. Probably the most educational piece I read on where we stand on vaccines! We will get there…eventually, we all hope so!
Yeah, really! Why the Coronavirus Is So Confusing. A guide to making sense of a problem that is now too big for any one person to fully comprehend. Must read!
But much else about the pandemic is still maddeningly unclear. Why do some people get really sick, but others do not? Are the models too optimistic or too pessimistic? Exactly how transmissible and deadly is the virus? How many people have actually been infected? How long must social restrictions go on for? Why are so many questions still unanswered?
Be careful out there, there is a lot of crap all over! Pandemic Science Out of Control. A toxic legacy of poor-quality research, media hype, lax regulatory oversight, and vicious partisanship has come home to roost in the search for effective treatments for COVID-19. Yeah, it’s sad! And for God’s sake, never ever inject disinfectants okay!
First is the willingness on the part of clinicians to abandon the prime dictum of medicine, to do no harm, and rush into treatments that not only may not work but may well cause serious harm.
The second issue exposed by the pandemic is the role the media invariably play in hyping science and the physicians who purvey it without regard to the quality of the underlying studies.
Third, as has been disturbingly revealed over and over in the past decade or more, too much biomedical research simply isn’t very good.
Maybe TIME magazine should name Face Mask as the person of the year? How the face mask became the world’s most coveted commodity. The global scramble for this vital item has exposed the harsh realities of international politics and the limits of the free market. Even drug dealers have diversified into selling masks now WTF!
More details into the PREDICT program. Deadly Leaps. These scientists saw the coronavirus coming. Now they’re trying to stop the next pandemic before it starts. There are so many viruses out there!
Mowing down forests for large-scale agriculture, harvesting timber, and sprawling cities — all these activities were forcing bats into close quarters with people. “It’s not the animals’ fault for carrying these diseases,” he said. “These are things that we do to the environment around us.” Over the past century, the human population has exploded. At the height of the 1918-1919 Spanish flu pandemic, the global population was around 1.8 billion, less than a quarter of what it is today. In the past century, millions of humans have spent years slaughtering wildlife; cutting down trees; placing cows, chickens, and pigs in close contact with wild animals — providing ample opportunity for viruses to make a deadly leap.
I was never a fan of George W. Bush. Donald Trump’s Presidency though has been the best thing that could have been done to enhance his legacy! And then you get an incredibly powerful message to us all and all I can say is…well done George!
Great explainer about these antibody tests we have all been hearing about and had no clue what they were…among so many other things before this tiny phucking virus came into our lives and messed them up: Should You Get an Antibody Test?
And now the Chinese are trolling us…
We are all getting tired of this quarantining thing and we might be ready to move on, but COVID-19 isn’t; therein lies the rub. It sure does…
MILES & POINTS
HOT CREDIT CARD OFFERS: New: The CitiBusiness AAdvantage Platinum now offers 70k AA miles. There is an offer for the United Explorer card offering 60,000 miles. The IHG Rewards Club card offering 140k points too, highest ever. For a standard workhorse card I recommend the 60k Chase Sapphire Preferred card. For a standard premium card I recommend the 50k Chase Sapphire Reserve card. For a standard 2% cash back card I recommend the Citi Double Cash card. Available with my links. Lets move on!
Finally it looks like the banks got the message that life has changed and they should do something to get their credit card holders to spend more. These Credit Cards Are Adjusting to the “New Normal” with Great Bonus Offers. Amex giving streaming and wireless statement credits, more points on groceries and restaurant delivery and take out and other select business purchases. Chase cards go big on grocery spend until June 30. And Citi will now allow statement credits on its Prestige card for restaurant and grocery spend.
For a more detailed look on what Amex is doing with its premium cards, check this out: Amex Plantinum New Benefits and Beyond – What Do You Do Now?
If you want to get more details on how to maximize your grocery spend: Grocery Shopping = Points Galore: Sizing Up the New Grocery Bonus Offers. Very nice table with the ranking of how you can get the most bang for your grocery buck! Personally, when I am done with the 5%x quarterly grocery spend on my Chase Freedom card, I will borrow son’s Chase Sapphire Reserve (and will Venmo him what I spend on it) and then move on to my own World Of Hyatt card…
As I said, banks are really trying to make us get and keep their cards! Hilton free weekend nights become anytime nights valid for 2 years. I may go for the premium Amex Hilton Aspire card later this year as this appears to be the final year I am holding on to the CNB card…I just need to find a way to use the CNB points! First world problem to have I guess 🙂
Enhancements to Free Weekend Night Rewards
Weekend night becomes anytime night
Unexpired and new Free Weekend Night rewards issued through December 31, 2020 can now be used any night of the week.
New free nights valid for 24 months
New weekend free night awards issued from May 1 to December 31 2020 will be valid for 24 months from the date of issuance (previously 12 months).
And I was also targeted for this by Citi: To thank you for your continued loyalty, every dollar spent on purchases made with your eligible1 Citi® / AAdvantage® credit card that posts to your AAdvantage® account between May 1 – Dec. 31, 2020, will count as 1 mile toward Million MilerSM status. One million miles give you AA Lifetime Gold (and 35,000 bonus AA miles). 2 million miles you give you Lifetime Platinum (and for one-way systemwide upgrades). Tempting 🙂
Most of the major banks now allow you six (instead of three) months to satisfy the minimum spending when you get a new travel rewards credit card and earn the signup bonus. So, no excuses! If you are still having issues completing this step, this hobby is not for you!
Most of the credit cards mentioned above can be applied with my links. Got questions? Ask away
Anyone ever flown Air Sinai? The Ghost Airline That Has Linked Cairo and Tel Aviv for Decades. Fascinating indeed.
We may not be traveling these days but that does not stop us from traveling virtually! Travel the World with These Livestream Cameras.
Maybe this belongs in the Covid-19 section but it is my blog and I can do what I want. So I am sticking it here and there is nothing you can do about it lol. 27 Days in Tokyo Bay: What Happened on the Diamond Princess. OMG, can you believe being on board? This article takes you inside the ship and…you won’t believe what you read next!
Do Not Disturb signs from all over the world, by country!
Anyone been to Club Hotel Casapueblo in Puntal del Este, Uruguay? Found a reference to it in a Greek travel website. Apparently, the hotel was built by an artist over many years. It looks so unique!
And what a great photo!
Good article, hope it does not happen to you anytime soon! 13 Financial Moves to Make After Losing a Spouse.
Everything Warren Buffett said in the 2020 Berkshire Hathaway shareholders meeting. Oh, by the way, he sold ALL airline stocks! I picked the best three:
Warren gives a shout out to Powell: “The Fed acted in mid-March [on the 23rd] in a huge way that enabled things play out they way that they have. Businesses who raised cash in late March should write a thank you note to the Fed. We do know the consequences of doing nothing.”
Buffett said he made a mistake in investing across the airline business. He mistakenly believed airline earnings “would go up across the industry. The airline business has changed in a major way and the future of airlines is much less clear. [Airlines] have too many planes.”
“Negative interest rates are the most interesting question in economics. We’re facing a period where we will test whether the world can continue to do this. We are doing things where we don’t know the ultimate outcome.”
ODDZ & ENDZ
Texas Monthly does it again. The Murders at the Lake. Wow, amazing story! In 1982 a brutal triple homicide shook the city of Waco and soon became one of the most confounding criminal cases in Texas history—one that still haunts the many people who have tried to solve it.
Avoid these people! ‘It’s bullshit’: Inside the weird, get-rich-quick world of dropshipping Not sure whether to laugh or cry after reading about these youngsters trying to get rich. I actually feel sad for them.
Interesting map! Mapped: The State of Press Freedom Around the World.
This dude has issues: The Man Who Runs 365 Marathons a Year. Did not think this was even possible!
Some of these are great! 68 Bits of Unsolicited Advice My top three:
Pros are just amateurs who know how to gracefully recover from their mistakes.
Promptness is a sign of respect.
How to apologize: Quickly, specifically, sincerely.
We are now entering BLOG BUZZ, a section for advanced hobbyists and veterans of this fast imploding hobby and also a section where I go on and on about some stuff that happens in my life because it helps me feel better about myself.
ANNOUNCEMENT: If you have not posted anything in three months (six if I really like you) your blog will no longer be listed on the world famous Blogs I Like list. You have been warned, time for a cleanup. If you keep linking to these blogs your blog does not deserve to be in my esteemed list.
Thanks to the reader who asked for my Plastiq referral link. I do not have one. For several reasons, among them being I do not like paying fees, I do not like how their marketing hammered me offering me bribes to use them, security reasons (I am paranoid), etc. Besides, I only feel comfortable with a few services I use myself and can recommend in good conscience. Of them, Rakuten is one I definitely recommend for online shopping. They have extended their great deal where you can sign up with MY REFERRAL LINK and get $30 off buying at least $30 worth of stuff you probably need or do not need. In other words, Freeeeeeeeeeeeeee! And I also get $30 #winning.
RIP to Mike Huckaby, a Detroit deep house legend!
Someone recently asked me when I am buying a Tesla. Say what? NEVER! Sticking with Ford and, besides, what the hell is wrong with this Elon dude, wow!
It was an easy week of running to recover from last week’s half marathon PR. Will be stepping it up again this week…
We are all struggling at home. We are not used to this, we are social beings. But we need to keep it up and stick to it…to turn things around. But it is a bit disheartening to hear son say “I miss the office” lol.
The Freddie Awards happened. It takes a lot of nerve to do this in these pandemic times #meaninglessmarketingbullshit
Amex RAT team is getting really absurd now! American Express Airline Incidental Clawbacks Intensify – Now Clawing Back 2 Years Worth Of Credits. WTF happens if they do this on a card you long ago canceled and…remains unpaid for months and ruin your credit? MFers!
It is really funny seeing Boarding Area credit card marketers being mad at TPG lol. Are we starting to see Red Ventures phasing out the 6.7 tall Brian?
Hobbyist friend gets out of the game for cash. This will NEVER happen in any other blogs because, you know, you do not cut your own throat!
And I leave you with this…
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Opinions expressed here are author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.