Morning Belz, May 18
Lab escape theory back in play, gun violence, another big short.
“Investigate the origins of COVID-19” — Science
Michael Burry reveals a $530 million bet against Tesla — CNBC*
21 children struck by gunfire in Mpls this year — Strib**
Pipeline shutdown may mostly have to do with billing — Zero Day
A firestorm over a Jeopardy! contestant’s hand signal — NYT
Hm! A newsletter that pays its readers — 1729
*You may remember Burry from “The Big Short,” Michael Lewis’s book about the small group of people who bet against the subprime mortgage boom in the 00s. He was right then. Is he right now?
**Not trying to fear-monger here. Minneapolis remains a highly desirable place to live, despite its brutal winters. Our former neighbors across the street in south Minneapolis sold their (modest) house this spring with 30+ offers the first day the home was on the market. But the gun violence news is real. This time a victim was a 6-year-old girl. Caught a stray bullet in the head and is in critical condition. As you can see from the map above (link here), the key incidents marked by red stars — actual shootings — are highly localized in north Minneapolis, a little bit downtown and a little bit in south Minneapolis in the vicinity of Chicago and 38th Street, where George Floyd was murdered. The orange circles are automated shotspotter records and the yellow circles are reports of gunfire, which are the least reliable metric since I might hear an engine backfire on France Avenue and call the police about shots fired. In any case, it’s not like Minneapolis is a citywide scene of chaos where bullets are flying everywhere and everyone is ducking for cover. Not trying to give that false impression. I’m also not pretending to have a tidy explanation for why children under 10 keep getting senselessly shot. But it’s terrible.
“Oh I bet you think you're John Wayne
Showing up and shooting down everybody
You're classic in the wrong way
And we all know that you know the story
Cause everyone knows someone who kills the buzz
Every time they open up their mouth
Yeah everyone knows someone who knows someone
Who thinks they're cooler than everybody else
And I think we've seen enough, seen enough
To know that you ain't ever gonna come down
Why don't you giddy up, giddy up
And ride straight out of this town.”
— Kacey Musgraves, “High Horse”
About: I send this email most weekdays in an effort to stay informed and in touch.I was a newspaper reporter for 14 years, most recently at the Minneapolis Star Tribune. I explained why my family left Minneapolis here. Now we live just outside Chattanooga and I work on Scuffed News. Please share this newsletter with anyone you think might enjoy it. And please consider supporting this work with your money on Patreon.