Matt Stoller's optimism about monopoly power extends even to defense spending, where the "free" market used to rule, in the sense that big defense contracting corporations just got bigger until we only have two corporations manufacturing rocket motors, and having two is really no better than having one, as two corporations can just carve up a market to benefit them (and not to benefit us). You may recognize Lucas Kunce, now running for a U.S. Senate seat as a Democrat from Missouri, as the co-author of an American Conservative piece about how monopolies hurt national security. I think Mr. Stoller is more optimistic than I'd be about this matter, though some say I'm prone to optimism; in any case, I'd prefer to believe he's right.
Joseph Stiglitz at In These Times provides another corrective to inflation "panicking." Some folks like to make fun of Joe Biden for saying inflation would be "temporary," but the December inflation rate was about half of the October rate (and the January rate, which just came out, was about the same as the December rate). Also, too, inflation's been going up for about a year, after a year in which the economy essentially shut down for three months, and a year is actually rather temporary in the greater cosmic sense. I hate to keep saying this, but I'm old enough to remember when inflation was above 10% for years. In place of interest rate hikes, Mr. Stiglitz proposes a temporary middle- and lower-class tax cut (which Republicans will hate, since it excludes their big donors), as well as policies targeting supply chain issues (of which the Ocean Shipping Reform Act, passed by our House late last year, might be one).
Folks who think all scientists are out for money and fame -- a belief they would never have entertained before Anthony Fauci clashed with their Personal Lord and Savior, Donald Trump -- may want to attend two scientists who appear to have taken ivermectin's COVID-treating potential seriously, until the science disabused them of the notion. Along the way you'll nod when you read, once again, that correlation is not causation (the Tyler Vigan link is pretty funny!), and that the "kitchen sink" approach to treating anything is a pretty damn good way of not proving anything in particular works. (In a related note: a study out of Malaysia finds that ivermectin works rather worse as a COVID treatment than your standard corticosteroid treatment.)
A study out of Emory University finds that spraying the antibiotic streptomycin on crops may make bees a good bit dumber, to the point where they don't function very well as pollinators. Now, this study took place entirely in the laboratory, but it doesn't bode well for future studies that will take place on actual farms where actual antibiotics get sprayed -- which, in turn, doesn't bode well for the many species of bees that pollinate our crops. And seriously, spraying antibiotics on crops? There are other ways to fight fire blight, for example, although you'll notice they involve more attention, from people, and since big ag doesn't like to hire people, we'll have to fight further.
Finally, Wenonah Hauter at In These Times instructs us that "The Fossil Fuel Industry Doesn't Create Nearly as Many Jobs as it Says It Does," a nugget of wisdom you'll probably remember from the debate over the notorious Keystone XL pipeline, where right-wingers yammered on about TEH JOBZ!!!!! even though we knew the pipeline would create only a few thousand construction jobs for two years and then create only a few dozen permanent jobs. How do they do it? Simple: they count damn near everything, like convenience store workers who work at gas stations, as "jobs created by fossil fuels," whereas if you counted only those jobs directly created by the industry, well, the number wouldn't be nearly as impressive. And those convenience store workers would still be selling milk and cigarettes if they didn't also happen to have gas pumps on-site. (As you may know, the only state where a worker actually pumps your gas for you is America's Greatest State, New Jersey.)
UPDATE. A reader informs me that Oregon also mandates that workers pump your gas. That should instruct me to refrain from all the cheerleading I do for America's Greatest State, New Jersey! Alas, I may not learn this lesson right away.