Assorted Links Monday
More shortages (this time in Texas), we do the numbers on the economy, global internet speeds, and pics of my pigs Petunia and Miss Piggy.
Texas favorite Topo Chico experiencing a nationwide shortage. I have to admit that although I'm a Texan-by-choice, I've never had a Topo Chico. But now I must find one.
The U.S. economy contracted at a record average annualized rate of 19.2% from its peak in the fourth quarter of 2019 through the second quarter of 2020, confirming that the COVID-19 recession was the worst ever. The pace of recovery from the pandemic downturn, the deepest going back to 1947, was equally stunning. GDP rebounded at a historic average rate of 18.3% between Q2-4 of 2020.
Internet speeds around the world:
Behind the rise of US solar power, a mountain of Chinese coal:
Reliance on coal-fired electricity to produce solar panels raises concerns in the West.
Americans' optimism about COVID-19 dashed as cases surge: In a dramatic shift from last month, more Americans now say the coronavirus situation in the U.S. is getting worse (45%) rather than better (40%). In June, a record 89% said the situation was getting better, while only 3% said it was getting worse.
Turns out that California voters were tricked into banning bacon:
At the beginning of next year, California will begin enforcing an animal welfare proposition approved overwhelmingly by voters in 2018 that requires more space for breeding pigs, egg-laying chickens and veal calves. National veal and egg producers are optimistic they can meet the new standards, but only 4% of hog operations now comply with the new rules. Unless the courts intervene or the state temporarily allows non-compliant meat to be sold in the state, California will lose almost all of its pork supply, much of which comes from Iowa, and pork producers will face higher costs to regain a key market.
(When I lived in California, I raised my own bacon. Here's a pic of Petunia and Miss Piggy.)
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