Dakhla to Imlili and back

Imlili – April 5, 2021 – Dakhla to Imlili and back, Morocco

By Tom Allin

Yesterday was a day of taking it easy and trying to de-sand ourselves, and our clothes, luggage and the 4Runner. As for de-sanding; we made progress and hopefully someday soon we will say goodby to the sands of the Sahara.

Today we are taking another drive into the desert. However, this drive will be with Martina not Nico and she will do all the driving. Nancy and I will be passengers.

Martina is a knowledgeable guide: (a) a Doctorate degree in Ocean Biology, (b) enjoys the outdoors, (c) has lived in Dakhla for six plus years, and (d) enjoys people. She discussed tourism, government programs, the issue of the Sahrawi independence movement, birds, oceans and of course the desert.

The primary destination is Imlili. Not the very small village but the Imlili sebkha. A sebkha is a depression with a salted bottom. The Imlili sebkha is characterized by small saltwater pools with fish and is approximately 12 km long and 2.5 km wide and 10 km deep. It is 15 km east of the Atlantic Ocean and if you know this area there are several trails to drive – I didn’t see trails but Martina said we were on trails.




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Not a Stump-screaming, Mesmerizing Speaker. But

By George Smith

Joe Biden is not a stump-screaming, mesmerizing speaker. But Wednesday night, his message was clear: The crap we’ve been doing in the past is not going to be the path to the future.

Early observation: Only a handclapful of Republicans applauded his promise to move millions of children out of poverty. 

That’s heartless, like saying newborn kittens are ugly. 

Republicans, as a political entity and a national party, not as individuals, believe in the theory of the “unwashed masses”, a grouping of folks living in poverty that want a handout, rather than a hand up.

This rather disparaging term was coined by the Victorian novelist and playwright Edward Bulwer-Lytton. He used it in his 1830 novel “Paul Clifford”. But the phrase is often attributed to Abraham Lincoln, who never, apparently used those words in any published document or speech.

Lincoln was quoted as saying, iterations include this quote: “You cannot help the poor by destroying the rich. You cannot strengthen the weak by weakening the strong. You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift. You cannot lift the wage earner up by pulling the wage payer down. You cannot further the brotherhood of man by inciting class hatred. You cannot build character and courage by taking away people’s initiative and independence. You cannot help people permanently by doing for them, what they could and should do for themselves. – Abraham Lincoln” 

He never uttered those words, at least that have never been recorded.

In as early as 1967, the misattribution was explained in a congressional record. The text from the document explains that a list of ten points attributed to Lincoln “sprang from the imagination of Rev. William J. H. Boetcher, who copyrighted and printed them in 1916.”  

The report blames the Committee for Constitutional Government for having started the misattribution by selling and circulating “the spurious quotations and, thus, earned the dubious honor of having first associated Lincoln with the maxims.” 

This might explain why: The committee was a lobby created in 1937 against Franklin D. Roosevelts’ court-packing plan, part of his New Deal programs to respond to the Great Depression.

For decades, in columns and editorials, I used the “unwashed masses” phrase and attributed it to Lincoln. It’s amazing how research and reading can change personal reality.

I am hopeful today that our elected leaders can get past petty partisan politics and work together on programs desperately needed to fix the country’s ills.

Working together, in harmony, any chore becomes easier. The nation needs healing in so many ways. Now’s the time to reach across the political aisle and do what’s in the best interests of the country, not any one political party.


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Track Coronavirus Cases

“Harrison County is at a high risk level for Covid-19 infections. The average number of new cases in Harrison County reached five yesterday, a 3 percent increase from the day before. Since January of last year, at least 1 in 14 people who live in Harrison County have been infected, and at least 1 in 628 have died.”

What to Do If You Received the J&J/Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine

After a temporary pause, CDC and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommend use of Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen (J&J/Janssen) COVID-19 Vaccine resume in the United States. A review of all available data at this time shows that the J&J/Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine’s known and potential benefits outweigh its known and potential risks. However, women under 50 years old should be aware of the rare but increased risk of the adverse event called thrombosis with thrombocytopenia syndrome (TTS), and that there are other COVID-19 vaccine options available for which this risk has not been seen. CDC and FDA will continue to monitor the safety of all COVID-19 vaccines. 


1. The Anti-Vaccine Influencers Who Are Merely Asking Questions (The Atlantic) Life can go back to normal in the United States only if millions more Americans get vaccinated against COVID-19. The problem is that today’s communication environment is perfectly engineered to discourage that. Wild claims go viral, and partisans exploit any scientific uncertainty for political advantage.

Hopkins Recent Citations:

1. Pfizer CEO Says Antiviral Pill To Treat Covid Could Be Ready By The End Of The Year (Forbes) A pill that can be ingested orally at home to combat Covid-19 when illness is first detected could be available to the public by the end of 2021, Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla told CNBC on Tuesday, noting that the antiviral treatment is expected to be effective against variants of the virus.

2. An Unexpected Pandemic Side Effect In Peru: A Comeback For TB (NPR) Tuberculosis kills around 1.5 million people a year, making it a top priority for public health organizations. The United Nations aims to end the epidemic of tuberculosis by 2030, but COVID-related disruptions to TB treatments may push that goal out of reach — and end up propagating strains that are resistant to treatment, which also tend to be the deadliest.

Genomic Epidemiology of SARS-CoV-2 Infection During the Initial Pandemic Wave and Association With Disease Severity

Question  Are SARS-CoV-2 variants, virus clades, or clade groups associated with disease severity and patient outcomes?

Findings  In this cross-sectional study of 302 SARS-CoV-2 isolates, 6 different Global Initiative on Sharing All Influenza Data clades circulated in the community followed by a rapid reduction in clade diversity. Several variants, including 23403A>G (D614G), were significantly associated with lower hospitalization rates and increased patient survival.Meaning  These findings suggest that SARS-CoV-2 clade assignment is an important factor that may aid in estimating patient outcomes.

Can You Have Alcohol After the Covid Vaccine?

“…One thing that is clear from studies is that heavy alcohol consumption impairs the immune response and increases your susceptibility to bacterial and viral infections. It prevents immune cells from traveling to sites of infection and carrying out their duties, like destroying viruses, bacteria and infected cells; makes it easier for pathogens to invade your cells, and causes a host of other problems.” 

(J. Harris: …and they use tiny little jiggers to measure the hooch.)


Depression is merely anger without enthusiasm.

I drive way too fast to worry about cholesterol


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