Patterico's Pontifications

9/25/2021

Weekend Open Thread

Filed under: General — Dana @ 8:55 am



[guest post by Dana]

Let’s get started!

First news item

Chris Cuomo is accused of sexual harassment by his former boss Shelley Ross, then an executive producer at ABC News 20 years ago when the alleged incident took place:

“When Mr. Cuomo entered the Upper West Side bar, he walked toward me and greeted me with a strong bear hug while lowering one hand to firmly grab and squeeze the cheek of my buttock. “I can do this now that you’re no longer my boss,” he said to me with a kind of cocky arrogance.”

In response, Ross said he can not do that, and quickly left the party with her husband. Later, Cuomo sent her an email with an apology, according to the essay.

Second news item

Untitled

No whips:

The photographer who took controversial photos at the Texas border says that the images have been dramatically misinterpreted.

Despite hysterical accusations that mounted Border Patrol agents chased migrants with whips, photographer Paul Ratje says that he saw nothing of the sort at the border in Del Rio on Sunday.

‘I’ve never seen them whip anyone,’ Ratje told KTSM-TV. The still images actually depict the mounted agents swinging the long reins of their horses, not holding whips.

‘He was swinging it, but it can be misconstrued when you’re looking at the picture,’ said Ratje, who shot the photos from the Mexican side of the Rio Grande river…

‘Some of the Haitian men started running, trying to go around the horses,’ Ratje explained of his photos.

Here is video:

While the entire fiasco at the border with the Haitians is a hearbreaking humanitarian crisis that is in great part the result of President Biden’s mixed-messaging on immigration, let’s be very clear that whips were not used. But that does not mean that the images were not upsetting. (They were to me.)

The U.S. Border Patrol has been using horses to patrol the border region since 1904. Whether this was an appropriate geographical site in which to use them appears up for debate.

Third news item

More inconsistent wishy-washy-mixed-messaging from Biden’s administration:

Fourth news item

Without comment:

Fifth news item

Utterly unsurprising:

Democratic Rep Debbie Dingell, of Michigan, who was with Ms Ocasio-Cortez, said she and Ms Ocasio-Cortez was upset because of the way the Iron Dome’s funding was brought to the House floor, saying how it never went through committee.

“It’s very upsetting to people like she and I when it’s not in regular order, there were a lot of different opinions,” Ms Dingell, who voted yes on the legislation, noting how Ms Ocasio-Cortez has a significant Jewish community in her district. “The way that it was handled, and several of us have made it very well-known to leadership, it should never have been brought up that way and it should not have been out of regular order.”

[Ed. Ah, those pesky Jews cramping her style… Perhaps a pretty new gown with a righteous slogan earnestly emblazoned on it would help ease the poor girl’s distress.]

Sixth news item

A divided house and all that:

It is, however, possible to trace the roots of the current Democratic disarray. It comes down to a fundamental misunderstanding of a central political truth, offered by former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. In turning her Conservative Party in a sharp rightward direction, she argued: “first you win the argument, then you win the vote.”

In shaping their sweeping social spending legislation, with a putative price tag of $3.5 trillion, President Joe Biden and the Democratic congressional leaders have argued that this is what the voters chose last November. And polls do show broad support for universal pre-K, lower prescription drug prices and expanded health care, paid for by higher taxes on wealthy individuals and corporations. In essence, the argument goes, “We won the argument and the vote and now it’s time to turn these ideas into law.” The problem is that the Democrats did not win the vote — at least, not in the sense that mattered, given the unique nature of our system of government. And Biden has not even won the argument widely enough in his own party.

The lesson? Democrats not only have to come up with some unifying compromise, but with a “story” that centrist and progressives alike are willing and eager to tell: “We’re doing what we promised, your lives will be better, and not a single Republican helped make this possible.” There’s no guarantee that this will win them the argument and the vote next year. But what other chance do they have?

Seventh news item

The crazy train continues to jump the tracks:

Trump allies had spent months building up hope that Arizona would offer proof of their lies about the election, raising money along the way. Absent that proof, they did what they always do and spun reality.

“The Fake News is lying about the Arizona audit report!” Trump said in a statement Friday. “The leaked report conclusively shows there were enough fraudulent votes, mystery votes, and fake votes to change the outcome of the election 4 or 5 times over.”

By midday, Trump world was calling for more audits and investigations to build on the “proof” found in Maricopa County. Trump’s spokesperson, Liz Harrington, called for a “full forensic audit of the entire state,” saying “Arizona is only the beginning!” Trump-aligned candidates for Arizona secretary of state and governor called for a sequel to the audit in Pima County, which Biden also won.

This was always where the audit was going: If you can’t find conclusive evidence of fraud, at least keep the specter alive. It’s been the pattern for nearly a year. The true fraud was supposed to come out in dozens of lawsuits, then the Kraken was going to be released, and Mike Lindell would offer proof at his “Cyber Symposium” in South Dakota; none of it amounted to anything, but the “Stop the Steal” train continues on.

One would think that this massive embarrassment and enormous fail would compel the Republican Party to cut ties immediately with Trump and his quacksters and begin to work its way back to being a viable political party.One would think...

Eighth news item

Booster boost:

CDC Director Rochelle P. Walensky, M.D., M.P.H., endorsed the CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices’ (ACIP) recommendation for a booster shot of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine in certain populations and also recommended a booster dose for those in high risk occupational and institutional settings.

CDC recommends:

65 years and older and residents in long-term care settings…at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series,
50–64 years with underlying medical conditions…at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series,
18–49 years with underlying medical conditions…at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series, based on their individual benefits and risks,
18-64 years who are at increased risk for COVID-19 exposure and transmission because of occupational or institutional setting…at least 6 months after their Pfizer-BioNTech primary series, based on their individual benefits and risks.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch:

As he announced Friday that booster shots would be available to some Americans, President Joe Biden made a prediction: The administration is likely to soon provide third doses of covid-19 vaccine “across the board” to anyone who wants one.

“In the near term, we’re probably going to open this up,” he told reporters.

But that assessment — a politically popular one in a country where most vaccinated people say they are eager for a booster — was the latest example of how Biden and some of his team have been ahead of the nation’s top public health scientists, who have emphatically said in recent days that there is simply not enough evidence to suggest that boosters are necessary for the entire U.S. population.

Ninth news item

I’ll believe it when I see it:

It’s almost certain that Afghanistan’s Taliban rulers won’t get to speak at this year’s U.N. General Assembly meeting of world leaders.

The Taliban challenged the credentials of the ambassador from Afghanistan’s former government, which they ousted on Aug. 15, and asked to represent the country at the assembly’s high-level General Debate. It began Tuesday and ends Monday, with Afghanistan’s representative as the final speaker.

Consider that the UN has previously welcomed high-profile despots : Vladimir Putin, Xi Jinping, Raul Castro, and President Hassan Rouhani…

Have a good weekend!

–Dana

154 Responses to “Weekend Open Thread”

  1. Good morning.

    Dana (174549)

  2. Good morning, Dana.

    nk (1d9030)

  3. The lies about election fraud aren’t falsifiable. Every time they fail to find evidence they point to some new unknown and assert that the proof is in that unknown.

    It will continue as long as the pathetic grifters can make money.

    Time123 (9f42ee)

  4. “Our Afghan allies.”
    FBI investigating female soldier’s report that she was assaulted by Afghan refugees at military complex in New Mexico

    The FBI confirmed Friday it is investigating an allegation from a U.S. soldier who reported being assaulted by a group of Afghan male evacuees at Fort Bliss’ Doña Ana Complex in New Mexico.

    In other incidents:Earlier this month, the Department of Justice separately charged two Afghan males housed at Fort McCoy in Wisconsin with assault and sexual abuse.

    Bahrullah Noori, 20, was charged with attempted aggravated sexual abuse and sexual abuse. He knowingly engaged in a sexual act with a minor boy and attempted to engage in a sexual act with a separate minor boy, according to charging documents from the Department of Justice.

    Separately, Mohammad Imaad was charged with assaulting his spouse by strangling her at Fort McCoy in Wisconsin on September 7, according to the charging documents. The alleged victim survived the incident.

    The granting of collaborator visas is one of the dumbest things we do. For three reasons:
    1. These people are traitors to their country, to their ancestors, and to their God, collaborating with an invader and occupier and infidel to boot, and no more likely to ever be loyal to America than they are to their native land;
    2. They are from the same stock as the enemy we are there to fight; and
    3. We reduce their commitment to our success if we give them a reward should we lose, which is even more poignant when we’re nation-building.

    nk (1d9030)

  5. Pew: Americans who relied most on Trump for COVID-19 news among least likely to be vaccinated
    ……..
    In late April 2020, as part of the Center’s American News Pathways Project, respondents were asked to name the source they relied on most for pandemic news. …….

    Over a year later, at the end of August 2021, the Center asked U.S. adults about their vaccination status. Of the 10,348 respondents who took the August survey, 6,686 had also taken the April 2020 survey. Looking at the group who took both surveys reveals distinct differences in vaccination rates based on where people turned most for COVID-19 news.

    Those who cited Trump and his task force and those who cited personal and community networks as their favored COVID-19 news sources are far less likely than those who relied on other source types to have received at least one shot of the vaccine. Roughly six-in-ten (59%) of those who relied most on Trump say they have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, while 38% say they have not received a vaccine.

    Those who said they rely most on personal and community networks such as family and friends, local newsletters or Listservs, or online forums for pandemic news have virtually the same vaccination rate as the Trump group: 58% say they have taken at least one shot and 38% have not had any vaccine doses.

    The most highly vaccinated groups are comprised of adults who in April 2020 said they relied most on national news outlets and public health organizations and officials for COVID-19 news; 83% and 82%, respectively, say they have gotten at least one shot. And about three-quarters of those who relied most on international news outlets (78%), state and local elected officials (76%) and local news outlets (72%) also have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.
    ……..
    Related:

    Trump also spoke in the interview with (David) Brody ( on “The Water Cooler” show on Real America’s Voice) about how he ignored the advice of Anthony Fauci, the head of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, who advised the Trump White House on the coronavirus and now serves as Biden’s chief medical adviser.

    “He was there for like 40 years or something, right? He was part of the furniture. But if you think about it, I really did pretty much the opposite of whatever he said,” Trump remarked, adding, “He’s a better promoter than he is a doctor.”

    Rip Murdock (beeefc)

  6. Left out but seems relevant re: CDC Director’s booster endorsement:

    Washington Post – CDC director has overruled her agency’s advisors on booster shots

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/2021/09/23/covid-booster-shots-cdc/

    Obudman (5a5600)

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  8. RIP maverick filmmaker Melvin Van Peebles (89) and singer Sarah Dash (76).

    Rip Murdock (beeefc)

  9. One would think that this massive embarrassment and enormous fail would compel the Republican Party to cut ties immediately with Trump and his quacksters and begin to work its way back to being a viable political party.One would think…

    The problem is that there is no such thing as “the Republican Party.” There are only its members, and many of the members who opposed Trump have left the party to the whackjobs.

    Those people on the sidelines have two choices: re-engage and try to take the GOP back, or start a party to succeed the GOP.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  10. BREAKING: Gen. McKenzie, head of U.S. Central Command, to announce no ISIS-K fighters killed in U.S. drone strike in Kabul Aug 29. 10 civilians killed, including 7 children in Toyota. No disciplinary action expected, officials say. US military stands by intel leading to strike.
    .

    Biden on the images of border patrol agents in Del Rio: “I promise you, those people will pay.”

    “There will be consequences. It’s an embarrassment. But beyond an embarrassment it is dangerous, it’s wrong.”
    .

    There are conservatives who voted for this.

    Obudman (5a5600)

  11. OK, third choice: stay on the sidelines and complain.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  12. There are conservatives who voted for this.

    And again, offer people a choice between “crazy” and “wrong” and they might not choose crazy. It’s the fault of anyone who ever voted for Trump in a primary, and no one else’s.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  13. Every immigrant who tries to enter the US at the southern border should be given a jab of J&J before we even ask their name.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  14. Australia’s Top Court Finds Media Companies Liable for Other People’s Facebook Comments
    ………
    The High Court of Australia determined that media companies, by creating a public Facebook page and posting content on that page, facilitated and encouraged comments from other users on those posts. That means the media companies should be considered publishers of the comments and are therefore responsible for any defamatory content that appears in them, according to a summary of the judgment from the court.
    ……….
    Some legal experts expressed concerns about the ruling. Jason Bosland, an associate professor at the University of Melbourne’s law school, said it could hinder the ability of media companies to promote important public-interest journalism. Mr. Bosland said even moderating comments in real time wouldn’t be enough to completely shield newspapers from liability, because the ruling effectively means media companies are responsible for people’s comments the instant they are posted.

    “I think it chills the capacity for the media to produce stories which provoke public discussion, and that’s exactly what you want the media to do,” he said. “You want them to be able to put up stuff online and you want them to be able to encourage people to engage in a civilized public debate.”

    Australia is already considered to be a defamation hot spot because of plaintiff-friendly laws that make it easier to win defamation lawsuits compared with other jurisdictions. In Australia, free speech isn’t protected by the constitution and a defendant such as a newspaper must prove that a statement is true. In the U.S., where the First Amendment protects freedom of speech, it is the plaintiff’s responsibility to prove an alleged defamatory statement is false.
    ……..
    This could be the future if Section 230 is repealed-newspapers and social media sites would either heavily moderate comments or ban individuals even more than they do now, or ban postings all together to avoid defamation liability.

    Rip Murdock (beeefc)

  15. “It’s the fault of anyone who ever voted for Trump in a primary, and no one else’s.”

    Blaming Trump for much worse than Trump……

    Obudman (5a5600)

  16. As those who signed up for Trump University can tell you, following Trump is bad for your wealth.

    And the evidence is accumulating that following Trump is bad for your health. The ten states with the highest number of COVID cases per capita now are: Alaska, West Virginia, Wyoming, Montana, Kentucky, Idaho, Tennessee, North Carolina, and Alabama.

    Those states are very different, but they have one thing in common: They all voted for Trump.

    And that Pew Research poll Rip linked to in #5 shows why following Trump is bad for your health: Those who follow Trump are not getting vaccinated as (nearly) everyone should. And, most likely, not following the other precautions that can help during a pandemic.

    In my opinion, a competent, decent president, in place of Trump, could have reduced our death toll from COVID by at least half. In other words, I think we could have done at least as well as Germany, perhaps even as well as Canada.

    Jim Miller (edcec1)

  17. Re: Afghan drone strike:

    While in the end it was a tragedy, mistakes are often made in wartime when the information is imperfect and the decisions must be made in minutes. I’m sure people would be just as outraged (though I think a lot of the current outrage is more than a little partisan) if the decision was not to launch a drone strike and it resulted in a massive car bombing.

    The fog of war.

    Rip Murdock (beeefc)

  18. “It’s the fault of anyone who ever voted for Trump in a primary, and no one else’s.”

    I would add that it’s the fault of the GOP influencers who created an environment that precluded any substantive primary opposition to Trump. We should have had a Ben Sasse…or someone…..who campaigned and offered an alternative vision to Trump in the run-up to 2020. Instead we had more circling the wagons and cowering. Trump owned Fox News and much of Talk Radio….and that’s what enabled it. Outside of that (CNN etc) you’re seen as collaborating with the enemy. It’s likely that…in that environment….no one would have dethroned Trump…..but the GOP would have had a opposition voice that could have made a difference post Jan 6th. We the people deserved a bi-partisan investigation of why Trump did not quickly deploy the National Guard…..the good faith investigation would possibly have led to a different impeachment result…..

    AJ_Liberty (a4ff25)

  19. Andrew Sullivan has it right. An excerpt:

    And here is a chilling part of the conversation where Trump tried to pressure Pence into submission. Pence said he had no authority to send the election to the House:

    “Well, what if these people say you do?” Trump asked, gesturing beyond the White House to the crowds outside. Raucous cheering and blasting bullhorns could be heard through the Oval Office windows. “If these people say you had the power, wouldn’t you want to?” Trump asked.

    “I wouldn’t want any one person to have that authority,” Pence said.

    “But wouldn’t it almost be cool to have that power?” Trump asked … “Mike, you can do this. I’m counting on you to do it.”

    This is a president using the threat and thrill of a violent mob to pressure his vice-president into subverting the Constitution. If that doesn’t capture the essence of fascism, what does? If that wouldn’t put someone beyond the pale of democratic politics for ever, what would?

    It was, of course, just a prelude to the sacking of the Capitol the next day, the next tactic to overturn the election. Trump knew what the rally was for, promised it would be “wild,” and had been consulting with Steve Bannon, who had declared that “we’re going to bury Biden on January 6th, fucking bury him. We’re going to kill it in the crib. Kill the Biden presidency in the crib.” Trump subsequently told the mob that day: “You’ll never take back our country with weakness. You have to show strength.” And he urged them on to the Capitol where they chanted “Hang Mike Pence.”

    As the violence intensified, another chilling moment: Trump watched the mayhem with passivity, waiting to see what might happen; he refused to text to tell the mob to call it off; when McCarthy pleaded with him to stop the mob, Trump replied, “Well, Kevin, I guess these people are more upset about the election than you are.”

    Even in the taped message he was pressured to make later that day, Trump reiterated: “This was a fraudulent election, but we can’t play into the hands of these people.” At 6.01 pm, Trump tweeted: “These are the things and events that happen when a sacred landslide election victory is so unceremoniously & viciously stripped away from great patriots who have been badly & unfairly treated for so long.” There is no precedent for this kind of executive branch madness in American history, and no precedent in any functioning Western democracy. In any healthy democracy, Trump would already be an untouchable, despicable pariah — Nixon in 1974 with more public contempt.

    And yet … this man remains the overwhelming favorite to win the GOP nomination in 2024; and, despite mountains of evidence to the contrary, two-thirds of Republicans believe the election was stolen. And the methods Trump innovated to discredit the 2020 result are the model for the next assault. Last year was a dress rehearsal. Sixteen states have now shifted electoral powers away from the governor and secretaries of state to legislatures, run by Trump loyalists, as Robert Kagan has noted. And those few in power — like Esper or Pence — who put the constitution before Trump will be absent next time. A commitment to Trump over the Constitution will be a litmus test for a career in GOP politics.

    There are almost no words, so I’m glad Sullivan furnished some. As Kevin mentioned, we’re forced to between chose crazy and wrong, but either way we still get incompetence. For this Republican in the remnant wing, it’ll be protest votes until a traditional conservative 3rd option appears.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  20. There are conservatives who voted for this.

    Obudman (5a5600) — 9/25/2021 @ 10:34 am

    You are upset that Trump was easily defeated by Biden. I understand that. Trump’s critics went through this for four years, every Trump disaster a ‘toldya so’. Biden is terrible, so you’re feeling like this somehow validates your embarassing Trump support.

    But you don’t ask yourself why Biden crushed Trump with minimal effort.

    And you don’t ask yourself why you’re blaming the voters. You need to. Trump told you that the election was stolen, but you’re mad at the voters. If you’re justified to blame the voters, Trump tried to steal the election. There’s no answer to that contradiction that makes you reasonable.

    Dustin (c67fdb)

  21. it’s the fault of the GOP influencers who created an environment that precluded any substantive primary opposition to Trump.

    I agree. This ‘bend the knee’ Hannity style coverage has convinced Trump fans they have an entitlement to loyalty from any conservative. They don’t even care what conservatism is. If you know Biden is wrong on anything, then you must never criticize Trump, even for stuff like helping the Taliban or North korea, which was Trump’s idea.

    It’s created this dumb republican movement that doesn’t stand for anything. The ideals I have aren’t supported either way.

    A few days ago a Trump fanatic was saying ‘dumb darkies’ not to make a compelling point, but to tarnish the comments of a Trump critic’s blog. Courts are working their way to creating liability for comments, which will mean false flag comments (And then no comments). It’s no better on the left. We’re losing any space or interest in a nuanced ‘we disagree on some things, not others’ discussion. Politics is more and more sports for nerds, less and less about achieving a better life for citizens who agree on most things.

    I hope this is simply the bumpy road to a major correction, and not decline forever.

    Dustin (c67fdb)

  22. I could blame Mitt Romney. No, wait. Really.

    Back in late 2015, Jeb! was trying to run away with the nomination by locking up all the donors. It was how W won the nomination in 2000. But Romney stepped in and put the kibosh on that by saying if it was going to be a Jeb! runaway then maybe he, Mitt, would run again.

    The Jeb! Now! movement died, Mitt bowed out and a dozen contenders entered the ring. Including Trump.

    So, if Mitt had shut up it would have been President Jeb! (anyone could have beat Hillary). If Mitt had stayed in, it would have been Trump vs Mitt for the soul of the party.

    And of course, if Mitt had won in 2012 he would have been cruising to a second term.

    So, Mitt’s fault.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  23. In my opinion, a competent, decent president, in place of Trump, could have reduced our death toll from COVID by at least half. In other words, I think we could have done at least as well as Germany, perhaps even as well as Canada.

    1. Opinion is not fact, of course.
    2. Germans are not like Americans. They follow rules. I suspect than many of the German deaths are in the immigrant communities.
    3. Canadians are not like Americans. They like government. Even though most of Canada trailed the US in vaccinations by several months because their government immunized the Inuit first.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  24. Blaming Trump for much worse than Trump……

    No, I don’t blame Trump. He is what he is. I blame those who VOTED for him to be the GOP nominee. Why blame the crazy man and not those idiots who CHOSE the crazy man?

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  25. The U.S. Border Patrol has been using horses to patrol the border region since 1904. Whether this was an appropriate geographical site in which to use them appears up for debate

    I say let the people that do that job determine the best tools for the work. A refreshing change from all of these armchair experts calling the shots.

    Colonel Haiku (951ecf)

  26. Blaming Trump for much worse than Trump……

    Biden is not ‘much worse’ than Trump.

    Biden is awful. Hillary would have been awful. Trump was awful. It’s a fantasy to imagine Trump doing a good job with something, and so far Biden’s done poorly with COVID, spending, and he had a dumb idea to hand Afghanistan over to the Taliban. Trump wasn’t better on that.

    I don’t think Trump being awful takes an ounce of blame off Biden for Biden’s terrible performance, but where was Trump effective? He didn’t get any lasting legislation. He didn’t make a dent on the border. He did some easy EOs and as I explained at the time, those were barely accomplishments, gone in an instant.

    A GOP that admits it can do better than it has recently will probably get my vote. The democrats deserve to lose. I don’t get it. What is the appeal in showing Trump any praise at this point? The guy never won the popular vote. He was always a greasy sleazy liar. He didn’t bring home a victory against a drooling idiot who likes ice cream and going to sleep at 4 pm. Why not get over Trump already?

    Dustin (c67fdb)

  27. Meanwhile, 2nd circuit judge blocks NYC schools vaccine mandate. 2nd circuit panel to review shortly.

    Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration has been temporarily blocked from enforcing a vaccine mandate for nearly all adults in New York City public school buildings, after a federal appeals court granted a temporary injunction on Friday.

    The mandate, which affects well over 150,000 people working in the nation’s largest school system, was set to go into effect on Monday at midnight. Educators, parents and union officials have been bracing for the likelihood of staffing shortages and disruption in at least some schools where significant numbers of educators and staff members are not vaccinated.

    A judge for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit granted the injunction on a temporary basis and referred the case to a panel of three judges for review. City officials said they expected the review and ruling to take place in the next few days, possibly even over the weekend, and anticipated that the mandate would be upheld. But it is not clear if the issue will be resolved before the Monday deadline.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  28. A few days ago a Trump fanatic was saying ‘dumb darkies’ not to make a compelling point, but to tarnish the comments of a Trump critic’s blog.

    So… you think that fellow is a “Trump fanatic”, Dustin? The only thing that guy truly cheers on is the destruction of the USA.

    He’s more of a maniacal Democrat, IMO. And he showed his racist bent when he used that despicable term.

    Colonel Haiku (951ecf)

  29. Shorter: Trump lost to Chernenko.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  30. The only thing that guy truly cheers on is the destruction of the USA

    So … a Trump fanatic.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  31. No, Kev… the fanatics will fight for the betterment of their state or country. They won’t choose to flee.

    Colonel Haiku (951ecf)

  32. Please release my comment. I’m pretty sure there are no bad words.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  33. you think that fellow is a “Trump fanatic”, Dustin?

    Yes sir, I do. And he’s been outspoken that the destruction of the conservative movement that Trump has etiher defined or caused is ‘glorious’. It’s amazing. Trump is anti bush, anti reagan, anti democrat, anti anyone who doesn’t kiss Trump’s ass. Very few entities Trump is not anti (Taliban, Putin, mypillow).

    He’s more of a maniacal Democrat, IMO.

    100% agree. But I don’t see any contradiction. A lot of Trump fanatics are all over the map … Trump himself was a maniacal democrat for most of his adult life. Thought Hillary was the best secretary of state we ever had and wanted her to be president.

    There are a lot of folks on the street whose politics make no sense. Legalize drugs, open carry, 9/11 was Bush, protect the borders. It’s when these contradictions come with absolute self-confidence that we find a lot of fanatics (both Trumpy and Bernie).

    Trump got a lot of these guys with a xenophobic take on immigration. There are common sense reasons to demand the border be enforced. It’s one of the most important things I agreed with trump on. But he sold it in a way that’s turned the issue into a third rail. And Biden is turning it into an intentional disaster.

    There are few issues where the American people appear to have had the choice they deserve. The problem *is not* the American people. Almost everyone who isn’t invested in partisanship actually wants pretty much the same thing. Honest cops, clean streets, enforcement of crime, common sense compassion, a safety net without excess and abuse, schools where hard work is rewarded, a government that does a sane budget same as they do. The GOP that acknowleges it can do better by these folks is unstoppable.

    Dustin (c67fdb)

  34. Here’s a sober take from an honest Democrat on 1/6/21…

    “ “But statements from the informant appear to counter the government’s assertion that the Proud Boys organized for an offensive assault on the Capitol intended to stop the peaceful transition from Mr. Trump to Mr. Biden.”
    “On the eve of the attack, the records show, the informant said that the group had no plans to engage in violence the next day except to defend itself from potential assaults from leftist activists…. Then, during an interview in April, the informant again told his handlers that Proud Boys leaders gave explicit orders to maintain a defensive posture on Jan. 6. At another point in the interview, he said that he never heard any discussion that day about stopping the Electoral College process…. According to the records, the informant first began to tell the F.B.I. what he knew about Jan. 6 in late December after a pro-Trump rally in Washington that month turned violent…. [T]he records contain no indication that the informant was aware of a possible plot by Proud Boys leaders to purposefully instigate those normal Trump supporters — or what members of the group refer to as ‘normies’— on Jan. 6.”

    Althouse adds… “My hypothesis has been that if there had been a plan, the FBI would have known about it and it would have been defended against. If the government has evidence of a plan now, my question is why didn’t they know in advance and defend the Capitol properly? The simplest answer is that there was no plan.”

    https://althouse.blogspot.com/2021/09/but-statements-from-informant-appear-to.html

    Colonel Haiku (951ecf)

  35. In my opinion, a competent, decent president, in place of Trump, could have reduced our death toll from COVID by at least half. …….

    Exactly how? Given that getting Americans to do the same thing (vaccination, social distancing) is like herding cats, how would you enforce compliance, let alone defeat Mother Nature (virus mutations)?

    Rip Murdock (beeefc)

  36. The FBI should never use i informants to investigate on-going conspiracies. They should just let them play out and arrest the participants for the actual crimes.

    Rip Murdock (beeefc)

  37. Paul Montagu,

    Just checked and don’t see any comments by you in moderation.

    Dana (174549)

  38. Montagu @31 apparently cussing up a storm…..shocking!

    Dustin: “Trump fanatic”…..CH: “He’s more of a maniacal Democrat”

    Well, he certainly was pathologically obsessed with Biden on a deeply personal level….and was moving over to similarly debauch Harris…when he crossed the line of being more than just intellectually offensive. So, deep personal animus toward Reagan…great affection for Trump for besmirching Reagan conservatism….and great disappointment with “royalist” Biden unseating a horrible but functionally useful Trump. If you can find a coherent philosophy in there other than who maximizes my personal entertainment and drama…..let me know….or maybe let sleeping sociopaths lie…..

    AJ_Liberty (a4ff25)

  39. Dana,
    Paul Montagu (5de684) — 9/25/2021 @ 11:00 am Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  40. #34 Rip – I have given a longer answer in a comment that is — I assume — being held up in moderation. Since I don’t know when or if it will be released — and I have other things to do — I’ll give you this short one: Eight American states, New Hampshire, Washington, Utah, Oregon, Alaska, Maine, Hawaii, and Vermont, have lower death rates per capita than Germany’s.

    We have enough of a common culture that I believe that the other 42 states could have done almost as well as those eight — if we had better leadership in the White House and the state houses.

    Jim Miller (edcec1)

  41. “It’s the fault of anyone who ever voted for Trump in a primary, and no one else’s.”

    Why not blame Hillary? Or blame the Democrats primary voters that gave her the nomination? She was an awful choice.

    This fake British reporter gets it mostly right.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GLG9g7BcjKs

    Mattsky (55d339)

  42. “Honest cops, clean streets, enforcement of crime, common sense compassion, a safety net without excess and abuse, schools where hard work is rewarded, a government that does a sane budget same as they do. The GOP that acknowleges it can do better by these folks is unstoppable.”

    Amen. Trump took three America First concerns….immigration, internation trade, and radical Muslims….exaggerated and extremized the discussion….understanding that FNC and Talk Radio would leverage the fear/anger angle for ratings. Once complicit, they were compromised…and here we are. For a robust and healthy democracy, we have to be able to speak a common language and have a common base of facts to argue over. Instead, our media products make us think that the other side is almost demonic — that they want to destroy America. That leads to this idea of desperate measures…and finding someone who will “not just roll over”….and confusion over what is actually “worse than Trump”. People have been conditioned….on both sides….and there seems to be no room for boring common sense politicians……

    AJ_Liberty (a4ff25)

  43. Jim Miller and Paul Montagu,

    I’m a bit stumped by your comments in moderation, and have let P know.

    Dana (174549)

  44. Monica Gandhi, “an infectious disease specialist”, makes this bad news/good news prediction: We won’t ever “eradicate” COVID, but we can control it, so that:

    In a matter of months, viral circulation in the United States could dwindle to levels so low we will no longer need to require masks, distancing, ventilation, asymptomatic testing or contact tracing. This has already happened in Denmark, Ireland, Chile and Britain. These countries have higher vaccination rates than the United States, but we will be helped along by vaccination mandates, immunizations for young children that are on the horizon and by a high level of natural immunity caused by the rapidly spreading delta variant.

    I’d be happier if she said “will, most likely”, rather than “could”, but that “matter of months’ is, relatively, cheering.

    (By “eradication”, she means destroy it completely, as we have done with smallpox. I think we can “eliminate” it from the United States, as we have done with measles, if we are willing to put up with a lot of testing — but Gandhi, who is an expert, unlike me, thinks that isn’t possible.)

    Jim Miller (edcec1)

  45. 2022 elections most likely will bring republican control of the house and maybe the senate. Also democrats could lose more governorships and may lose virginia this year. What happened to mtg could happen to democrats.

    asset (52a845)

  46. The problem *is not* the American people.

    Dustin (c67fdb) — 9/25/2021 @ 12:17 pm

    I have to disagree with you here, Dustin. When offered better choices in primaries, voters chose crazy or wrong people. There were 16 Republicans other than Trump in 2016, which eventually dwindled down to one or two others, but Trump still prevailed. On the Democratic side, Jim Webb and maybe Lincoln Chafee were better than Hillary.

    In 2020, the Democrats could have chosen Gabbard, Bloomberg, Klobuchar, Bullock, or Hickenlooper at a minimum.

    Yes, Americans all want the same things, but they differ on how to achieve them. And, alas, all too often Americans want it both ways. Balanced budget? Yes, but not at the expense of my favorite government program. Good schools? Yes, but why is my precious little darling getting disciplined by the teacher? She’s an angel. International peace? Yes, but no more wars. Let’s bring all our troops home and just use diplomacy. Immigration enforcement? Yes, but why should I have to pay more for landscaping and fresh produce?

    Any politician who tells it like it is will not win an election, so yes, the problem is the American people. Leaders do the bidding of the people. The problem is that the people want conflicting things.

    I’ve provided this quote before, and I find it very profound:


    I do not believe that the solution to our problem is simply to elect the right people. The important thing is to establish a political climate of opinion which will make it politically profitable for the wrong people to do the right thing.

    Unless it is politically profitable for the wrong people to do the right thing, the right people will not do the right thing either, or if they try, they will shortly be out of office.

    Milton Friedman

    The bottom line? We shouldn’t focus on changing the system, or wring our hands over bad leaders. Instead, we should help voters become more discerning, which will result in leaders doing the right thing.

    norcal (b9a35f)

  47. You keep your hands off my swollen testicles, nk!

    norcal (b9a35f)

  48. THAT’S NOT ME, norcal!!!1! I’m home, in Chicago!

    nk (1d9030)

  49. I’m still trying to figure out Nicki Minaj’s swollen testicles.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  50. Wow. A never-before-seen all caps from nk. I hope I made you chuckle. Lord knows you often make me chuckle!

    norcal (b9a35f)

  51. “Relieved, guys?”

    Deflated.

    Davethulhu (017f04)

  52. @52 :) Inflation bad, deflation good

    norcal (b9a35f)

  53. we should help voters become more discerning,

    To which a large portion of the electorate would say — indeed, have been saying for the past several years — “You snobby elitists think you know what’s best for us, but we’re on to you, and we’re voting for the person who gives a middle finger to the Establishment and declares that the whole system is rigged against us (and him).”

    The dominant force in the GOP today is rebellion against discernment, principles, knowledge and expertise. It’s doubling down on paranoia and conspiracy theories the more contrary evidence is adduced. “The more they criticize him, they more I’ll support him” was a typical declaration of devotion to DJT, who is revered precisely because he is antithetical to the traditionally respected qualities of leadership.

    The Dems at least went for someone regarded as a safe and reasonable “establishment” alternative to the old Marxist — and eventually as the only plausible chance for winning the general. But surely he’s far from the most competent candidate who stepped forward on that side.

    The level of enthusiasm for Sanders is a problem. So is the fact that reasonable, boring competence doesn’t move enough voters to get traction early in the process. One strange thing about the last few years is how many Trump fans openly said that one of his virtues is that “he’s entertaining,” and who apparently believe that’s a great thing in a president.

    Radegunda (33a224)

  54. Trump took three America First concerns….immigration, internation trade, and radical Muslims….exaggerated and extremized the discussion….understanding that FNC and Talk Radio would leverage the fear/anger angle for ratings. Once complicit, they were compromised…and here we are.

    Sad, but true.

    I have a good friend who watches Fox News religiously. He loves to regurgitate to me the things he hears there. One of these days I’m going to have to tell him that if I wanted a dose of those talking points, I would watch Fox News more than once in a while.

    You see, both sides have their scripts, and it’s tedious when people just start reading their side’s script. If my friend ever disagreed with the script, then we could have an interesting conversation.

    His brother is a little better. He watches both Fox and MSNBC, etc. The sad part is that this brother thinks he has covered all his bases because he watches “both sides”. Yeah, the one side that is crazy, and the other side that is wrong!

    Perhaps the problem is people who get their politics from watching television.

    norcal (b9a35f)

  55. Ah, Radegunda. I always love to read your comments.

    Yes, I’m guess anybody who doesn’t buy into the comic-book portrayal of Trump as the superhero who will destroy the evil conglomerate is an elitist.

    One strange thing about the last few years is how many Trump fans openly said that one of his virtues is that “he’s entertaining,” and who apparently believe that’s a great thing in a president.

    Bread and circuses, right?

    I found it repellant when Trump would use all caps or exclamation points in his tweets. The President of the United States should never need any accoutrement to his words. The power of his office is sufficient in itself. Unless the president is playing to a mob, but I guess that was the whole point.

    norcal (b9a35f)

  56. In a matter of months, viral circulation in the United States could dwindle to levels so low we will no longer need to require masks, distancing, ventilation, asymptomatic testing or contact tracing. This has already happened in Denmark, Ireland, Chile and Britain.

    Thank you for providing some possible vacation destinations, Jim!

    norcal (b9a35f)

  57. Trump faces ‘substantial’ legal risk in Georgia case, think tank report says
    ……..[L]egal experts with the Brookings Institution think tank published a detailed analysis Friday of the potential criminal investigation he faces in Fulton County linked to his outspoken efforts to overturn the state’s election results.
    ……..
    Much of the report centers on the Jan. 2 phone call between Trump and Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger ……

    But it also outlines a host of other potential criminal infractions surrounding Trump’s push to invalidate the election, including direct calls to Gov. Brian Kemp and state Attorney General Chris Carr, and efforts by his attorney Rudy Giuliani to lobby state legislators to take extraordinary action.
    ……..
    Overall, the report said, the charges could include criminal solicitation to commit election fraud, intentional interference with performance of election duties, conspiracy to commit election fraud, racketeering and violations of more than a dozen other state statutes.
    ……..
    As a part of their legal analysis, the authors of the Brookings report explored the legal defenses Trump’s lawyers could mount should the Fulton investigation eventually lead to the courtroom.

    They said he can’t be immune because “a candidate who believes he has won an election does not enjoy any legal warrant to commit possible crimes in furtherance of that belief.” And second, because “there is an extraordinary absence of any evidence suggestive of irregularity in any respect in the Georgia process.”
    ………

    Rip Murdock (beeefc)

  58. “I have a good friend who watches Fox News religiously”

    I have one who just got his first vaccination (thankfully!)….and he stopped by to express his concern over Joe Rogan being cancelled. I did know who Rogan was but didn’t know what the controversy was. Apparently Rogan contracted Covid recently and initiated a cocktail of treatments, including ivermectin. My friend commented that it cured him. So I wondered, well, is he sure that a relatively young and fit guy didn’t just get better regardless of the ivermectin? But the thing that bothered me was not just the causation/correlation problem….but this is a well-educated guy who I would think would be a bit more skeptical about claims.

    Yes, there is an Australian study touting ivermectin…but there is also a lot of reviewers of that study that are unconvinced. Ivermectin is approved for treating hair lice and intensinal parasites but not as an anti-viral treatment for Covid. Now I’m open to people experimenting…as it is their health….but I would think my buddy would be first curious as to what the study claimed and what problems critics had with the statistics or methodology. That’s science….that’s critical reasoning…or at least ask a doctor for his/her assessment of teh research.

    Now one could counter-claim that the pharmaceutical industry is suppressing ivermectin for profit. But just like for global warming, there is significant prestige…especially during a world-wide pandemic…..to expose corruption and bring a low-cost solution to the world. In fact a similar motivation might be at play for over-stating a treatment’s efficacy. But the episode just reinforces my impression that we’re tilting toward a general mistrust of experts….Fauci being the most convenient target. Yes, there are bureaucracies…and overly conservative analyses…I get that….but we have to stop elevating Joe Rogan…..an actor, martial artist, ring announcer, and now blogger….as an important information source. Anecdotes are different than evidence….

    AJ_Liberty (a4ff25)

  59. Covid-19 Panel of Scientists Investigating Origins of Virus Is Disbanded

    “Columbia University professor Jeffrey Sachs said he has disbanded a task force of scientists probing the origins of Covid-19 in favor of wider biosafety research.

    Dr. Sachs, chairman of a Covid-19 commission affiliated with the Lancet scientific journals, said he closed the task force because he was concerned about its links to EcoHealth Alliance. The New York-based nonprofit has been under scrutiny from some scientists, members of Congress and other officials since 2020 for using U.S. funds for studies on bat coronaviruses with the Wuhan Institute of Virology, a research facility in the Chinese city where the first Covid-19 outbreak occurred.”

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/covid-19-panel-of-scientists-investigating-origins-of-virus-is-disbanded-11632571202

    Obudman (5a5600)

  60. “In my opinion, a competent, decent president, in place of Trump, could have reduced our death toll from COVID by at least half. …….”

    I disagree – we would have done basically the same thing (panic porn, politics, and $$$ over science) regardless of which prima donna or decrepit idiot was Chief Executive and guided by charlatans like Fauci and Big Pharma.

    The more I see and hear from the folks in charge the more I think physicians like this make more sense:

    https://twitter.com/Dadine43697948/status/1439587762462625797?s=20

    Obudman (5a5600)

  61. But the thing that bothered me was not just the causation/correlation problem….but this is a well-educated guy who I would think would be a bit more skeptical about claims.

    AJ_Liberty (a4ff25) — 9/25/2021 @ 6:53 pm

    How about the well-educated folks here who proffer video of 1/6 insurrectionists gathering illegally but peacefully inside the Capital, as if to prove those or other people couldn’t have gone on to commit acts of violence? How could any reader of this blog think such a transparent leap of logic would reflect well on them, much less persuade anyone? The answer I think is simple. The drug with a track record of efficacy longer than mRNA vaccines, ivermectin and hydroxychloroquine combined is confirmation-bias, especially when it’s super-charged by tribalism. And tragically, the affliction it too often overpowers, even among the educated, is logic.

    lurker (59504c)

  62. The secret GOP plan: The Pelosi Commission, with the able help of those renegade Republicans, will expose clearly treasonous activities on the part of Trump and his inner circle. As Trump is led to the gallows, the GOP in Congress, more in sorrow than anger, will decide it is time to move on.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  63. The republican party is passing laws in states controlled by them that give state legislatures final decision on voting rights and to who the electoral votes should go to instead of voters.

    asset (c6e813)

  64. @64 Yes, unfortunately. Licking Trump’s boots.

    norcal (b9a35f)

  65. I love how antagonized you worse than Trump voters are. Fricking wonderful seeing how scared you people are. lmmfao.
    Republicans deserve coal.

    mg (8cbc69)

  66. As a consequence, the need for control is a conscious reaction to something being feared.
    Trump winning!!

    mg (8cbc69)

  67. You people are scared. I can smell victory.

    mg (8cbc69)

  68. https://amgreatness.com/2021/09/25/times-reveals-fbi-role-in-january-6/
    not that it matters to never Trump.
    Worse than Trump/2024

    mg (8cbc69)

  69. Trump’s FBI on Trump’s watch, mg. You think it’s a good look for Trump? The PINO? President in name only? Who could not run the FBI, couldn’t run the military, couldn’t run the DOJ, couldn’t run the Border Patrol, couldn’t run the National Security Council, couldn’t run his own reelection campaign … all he could run was his mouth?

    nk (1d9030)

  70. The republican party is passing laws in states controlled by them that give state legislatures final decision on voting rights and to who the electoral votes should go to instead of voters.

    Sure, why have popular votes in states. It’s so much better to throw those votes out and leave the election for president to partisan politicians. No fascism there.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  71. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez huddled with her aides, and then switced her vote from No to present (on the special bill just for Iron Dome funding) She was crying when he felt she had to change her vote, and later apologized for the vote to her more radical supporters.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  72. The Haitians weren’t whipped, they were lassoed, like Wonder Woman does. But they were not the kind of people Wonder Woman lassoes.

    Most people have no idea what immigration law is.

    Example:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/23/opinion/adoption-immigration-korea.html

    To make “Blue Bayou,” Mr. Chon consulted with several noncitizen adoptees, including Anissa Druesedow, who was deported to Jamaica in 2006 and now lives in Panama. In 2003, while working in retail, Ms. Druesedow allowed someone she knew to return stolen items without receipts. She pleaded guilty and was sent to prison for forgery and theft. There, she was flagged by ICE and learned that she was not a U.S. citizen. Her adoptive parents had applied to adjust her status decades earlier, but because the government had taken six years to approve her green card, she had turned 18 and become ineligible for citizenship. Today, she works in a call center and uses WhatsApp to communicate with her daughter in Salt Lake City; she has a prosthetic leg but lacks health insurance.

    In 2000, Congress passed the Child Citizenship Act, which granted automatic citizenship to most categories of transnational adoptees. It was nicknamed the Delahunt Bill, after Representative William Delahunt of Massachusetts, the adoptive father of a daughter born in Vietnam. As Mr. Delahunt told the House, the law would cure “heartbreaking” instances of “forced separation” of parents and children, including those caused by bureaucratic delays, as in Ms. Druesedow’s case. Representative Lamar Smith of Texas co-sponsored that bill, stating, “after an adoption takes place … the child should automatically be considered a citizen.”

    But the law applied only to adoptees who were 18 years or younger on Feb. 27, 2001, when it went into effect. This arbitrary cutoff has left as many as 50,000 transnational adoptees like Ms. Druesedow without U.S. citizen status. “Adoption promises us a family, and we should have the same rights as biological children,” she told me by phone last week.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  73. 59. AJ_Liberty (a4ff25) — 9/25/2021 @ 6:53 pm

    Ivermectin is approved for treating hair lice and intensinal parasites but not as an anti-viral treatment for Covid.

    That’s a specious argument and shouldn’t be repeated. Anyone who knows anything at all about the drug approval process should know that drugs are often approved for the easiest to prove indication and that after that doctors can prescribe it for anything off label, and companies often do not try to get it approved for anything else. They can’r promote it directly, but they can promote doctors talking about it.

    Nobody approves vitamins for anything, as you may have noticed, bit that’s a lie. They can treat illnesses. Some treatments are very standard. Yet they have to say in advertisements this is not for the treatment of any illness.

    So people, for instance, don’t know about the value of Vitamin B6 for morning sickness in early pregnancy, just to name one thing. here used to be a combination of Vitamin B6 with some irrelevant drug in the market, but it was taken off the market.

    I’m open to people experimenting…as it is their health….but I would think my buddy would be first curious as to what the study claimed and what problems critics had with the statistics or methodology.

    He’s relying on secondary and tertiary sources. They are not so good.

    Now what gets the most publicity is a form of snake oil. Because people who have hopes of getting FDA approval don’t want to jeopardize their chances by early promotion because the FDA does not look kindly on that.

    People don’t understand the entire system. They assume it makes more sense and is more judicious than it is. It’s more wrongheaded than you can imagine. Nobody professionally involve in the industry dares to say so, because they have too much to lose.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  74. If they have a green card for five years (three years if married to a U.S. citizen) and are over eighteen, they can apply for naturalization on their own at any time. Meantime, they’re liable for deportation if they commit crimes while still green cards. Non-story, Sammy.

    nk (1d9030)

  75. Leave it to a cultist like Julie Kelly at American Greatness (whose mission is to proclaim the stable genius greatness of Donald Trump 24/7) to defend the Proud Boys’ illegal acts on 1/6 by castigating the FBI for infiltrating their network.

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  76. Now one could counter-claim that the pharmaceutical industry is suppressing ivermectin for profit.

    It isn;t that simple. But no company has any incentive to go through the trouble of getting it approvec. And now the FDA gets money for expediting approval.

    But just like for global warming, there is significant prestige…especially during a world-wide pandemic…..to expose corruption and bring a low-cost solution to the world.

    No there isn’t. Ot;’s literally impossible for any low cost solution to emerge unless maybe the Gates Foundation will decide to sponsor it.

    And the same thing actually can be set for climate change adaptation.

    All low cost solutions are off the table. You can read about some of them in the Freakonomics publications.

    In fact a similar motivation might be at play for over-stating a treatment’s efficacy. But the episode just reinforces my impression that we’re tilting toward a general mistrust of experts…

    And rightly so. But that doesn’t mean that you should trust any old non-expert.

    The average non-expert is more likely to be wrong, especially is echoing something being promoted.

    .Fauci being the most convenient target. Yes, there are bureaucracies…and overly conservative analyses…I get that….but we have to stop elevating Joe Rogan…..an actor, martial artist, ring announcer, and now blogger….as an important information source.

    He can be an important information source, but what he says must be checked.

    The important point is that it is not a binary choice: Either Dr. Fauci or Joe Rogan and company must be right.

    That either the Democratic Party or the Republican Party must be right on all major issues.

    Not so.

    Anecdotes are different than evidence….

    I think anecdotes are perfectly good evidence and the plural of anecdote is data. Sometimes the anecdotes are unreliable, or apocryphal or even lies. And the lies are not all on one side of the issue.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  77. #57 norcal – You are welcome. It is good to know that some nations — and some American states — are winning the fight against COVID, even if we aren’t planning to visit them soon.

    (My own travel plans? I realized some time ago, that I had visited 47 of the 50 states and that the three I hadn’t, Alaska, Hawaii, and Louisiana, were all places I wanted to see. So, maybe in 2023 I’ll start my go-for-50 project. After that? Possibly Denmark, where my maternal grandmother came from.)

    Jim Miller (edcec1)

  78. The problem with science is, that everyone (who participates in the game) is supposed to agree with what it says at any given time.

    This slows things down tremendously and may reinforce wrong ideas, which become hard to dislodge, however flimsy was the reasoning that established them in the first place.

    Example: Covid spread from surfaces. Needed to explain transmission at a distance of over 6 feet since there was a complimentary mistake,(originally used to explain flu) that airborne transmission could not happen at a distance.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  79. 75. nk (1d9030) — 9/26/2021 @ 7:29 am

    If they have a green card for five years (three years if married to a U.S. citizen) and are over eighteen, they can apply for naturalization on their own at any time.

    Butthey may not know their status.

    Meantime, they’re liable for deportation if they commit crimes while still green cards.

    Which violates the principle of equal justice under law.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  80. #73 Sammy – You reminded me of a fantasy of mine: Wonder Woman lassoing Donald Trump. Now that would be entertaining.

    I can’t be the only one who has had that thought, or suspected that, were Trump attached to a lie detector, the machine would explode.

    Jim Miller (edcec1)

  81. “In my opinion, a competent, decent president, in place of Trump, could have reduced our death toll from COVID by at least half. …….”

    No, it likely would have been higher, because Covid tests and vaccines and treatments would have taken longer to develop and get distributed.

    Of course it would have been possible to do better than Trump, but it would require an unusual person.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  82. Paul Montagu (5de684) — 9/26/2021 @ 7:34 am

    to defend the Proud Boys’ illegal acts on 1/6 by castigating the FBI for infiltrating their network

    There are several alternative explanation of what happened:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/25/us/capitol-riot-fbi-informant.html

    …In the informant’s version of events, the Proud Boys, famous for their street fights, were largely following a pro-Trump mob consumed by a herd mentality rather than carrying out any type of preplanned attack…

    … In this case, the records obtained by The Times do not directly address whether the informant was in a good position to know about plans developed for Jan. 6 by the leadership of the Proud Boys, why he was cooperating, whether he could have missed indications of a plot or whether he could have deliberately misled the government.

    A low ranking person wouldn’t have been told anything, anyway.

    This can be used to argue that the plotting must have been done by Trump. But there’s less evidence for that than anything else. Trump, in any case, would have had to act through other people, so that doesn;t get you out of the need for unknown conspirators.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  83. s the latest example of how Biden and some of his team have been ahead of the nation’s top public health scientists

    Trump was ahead too, but he never said, or his people never said, that something was actually going to happen. Only that they would be ready to go on Day One.

    And did he get pummeled politically for promising vaccines by a certain time. Orange Man bad that’s why. Even though he was bad. It still didn’t make him wrong on anything and everything. He was wrog here too, in fact — in tolerating too much delay.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  84. The Haitians weren’t whipped, they were lassoed, like Wonder Woman does. But they were not the kind of people Wonder Woman lassoes.

    I saw no lassos. Is that a surmise, Sammy? The horse is braced like a quarter horse anchoring a rope, but the border agent is merely leaning over and holding on to the man with his bare hand.

    But I’ll tell you, it is a picture to wring pity. Those poor people just wanting to sit down with their families and eat their pitiful meals, not knowing if and when they’ll have another.

    nk (1d9030)

  85. The republican party is passing laws in states controlled by them that give state legislatures final decision on voting rights and to who the electoral votes should go to instead of voters.

    I hope these laws are tested before the 2024 election. Since the Civil War (and in most states since the 1820s), the popular vote in the state has chosen the electors. There is an adverse possession argument here. Can a state reclaim, after 150 years, a power it has granted to the People thereof?

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  86. The republican party is passing laws in states controlled by them that give state legislatures final decision on voting rights and to who the electoral votes should go to instead of voters.

    For the last decade the Democrat Party has been passing laws in the states controlled by them that assign electors based on “the national popular vote”, not the vote of the citizens of each state.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  87. “In my opinion, a competent, decent president, in place of Trump, could have reduced our death toll from COVID by at least half. …….”

    Sure. A president who, in late January 2020, had shut down air travel completely and ordered the army to block interstate travel (and somehow who did not get impeached). Then ordered mandatory lockdowns in places with outbreaks and enforced it with federal troops.

    Then maybe we could have had the same containment as the nightmare governments.

    (Never mind that the genie was out of the bottle after CES 2000).

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  88. You people are scared. I can smell victory.

    I had no idea that “victory” smells so much like sh1t.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  89. What some states have done, I believe, is taken the power to certify the vote away from the Secretary of State or Board of Elections and given it to the legislature.

    nk (1d9030)

  90. https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/26/upshot/cost-of-covid-rapid-test-prices.html

    At the drugstore, a rapid Covid test usually costs less than $20.

    Across the country, over a dozen testing sites owned by the start-up company GS Labs regularly bill $380.

    There’s a reason they can. When Congress tried to ensure that Americans wouldn’t have to pay for coronavirus testing, it required insurers to pay certain laboratories whatever “cash price” they listed online for the tests, with no limit on what that might be.

    Democrats, it can be said, believe markets are not efficient – except when the government is spending the money.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  91. @70:

    Yes, the real problem with President Trump was that he was singularly ineffective. He was like Mickey in “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice.” He had no idea how to make government work for him and blames everyone else for his ineptitude. Then he went off to some rally and ran his mouth some more.

    Basically, he was just jerking off.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  92. What some states have done, I believe, is taken the power to certify the vote away from the Secretary of State or Board of Elections and given it to the legislature.

    In my state they have taken it from the People entirely, taking effect when states with a majority of the EV agree to do so also.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  93. Or are attempting to do? In either case, the same crapweaselly crap that makes the Party of Abraham Lincoln into a Puerto Rican girl from Greenwich Village crying into a chain link fence overlooking a parking lot exit because those mean New York Jews won’t let her vote the way she really wants to on military aid to Israel.

    nk (1d9030)

  94. nk (1d9030) — 9/26/2021 @ 8:15 am

    I saw no lassos. Is that a surmise, Sammy? The horse is braced like a quarter horse anchoring a rope, but the border agent is merely leaning over and holding on to the man with his bare hand.

    I read something to the effect that the reins were used as lassoes.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/21/us/politics/haitians-border-patrol-photos.html

    During a news conference in Del Rio on Monday, Chief Raul L. Ortiz of the Border Patrol said the mounted unit was deployed to assist with security and see if any migrants were in distress, as well as to gather intelligence about smuggling organizations.

    “Operating in riverine environment, on horseback, is a difficult situation,” he said, adding that agents used reins to try to control horses so that they did not inadvertently injure migrants. He said the actions of one agent on horseback, who appeared to be spinning his reins like a lasso as he loomed over a group in the water, were most likely related to that challenge.

    It was a surmise and seems to be wrong.

    https://leadstories.com/hoax-alert/2021/09/fact-check-mounted-border-patrol-did-not-use-whips-to-round-up-haitian-refugees.html

    While photos and video circulating show mounted border patrol agents aggresively attempting to turn back people trying to cross a shallow portion of the Rio Grande, it does not show them using whips. The people in the river were trying to return to the encampment under the International Bridge on the United States side of the river. Scenes clearly show some Border Patrol agents swinging something in the air, but these were not whips or lassos — they were swinging the loose end of their split reins, a part of western riding gear used to guide the horse.

    Lassoes were maybe used at one time by the Texas Rangers: (in 1915)

    https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2021/09/border-patrol-horseback-haitian-migrants-del-rio.html

    . Some of the other moments of Texas Ranger history that those photographs reminded me of were the photographs from 1915 that were taken in Texas with a group of Texas Rangers on horseback with their lassos, with ropes tied around the corpses of four men who were identified by the photographer only as “Mexican bandits.”

    In 1919, the Texas Rangers were investigated by the state legislature for committing abuses like organizing massacres, making prisoners vulnerable to lynch mobs, shooting prisoners, shooting people just for being Mexican, and denying them due process. State Representative Jose T. Canales filed charges about specific cases of abuse and violence and named specific Rangers, but he also filed charges against the adjutant general and tried to hold the leadership accountable. He made the point that reforming the agency had to be more than firing just a few bad apples. Accountability had to start at the top. In the end, a joint committee of the Texas state Senate and House refused to investigate those charges.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  95. “President Biden has been caught flat footed again in yet another avoidable disaster. Early in his term, Biden and members of his administration failed to comprehend that their rollback of President Trump’s successful border policies were incentivizing an unprecedented surge of illegal immigrants at the southern border.

    As a result, the number of people risking the dangerous journey to our southern border has continued to rise, even during the treacherous summer months, even during a global pandemic.

    We are encountering more people at our southern border than any other time in the last 21 years. Two months in a row, the numbers exceeded 200,000; in August 2021, the numbers represented a 317 percent increase over August of last year.“

    https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/us/biden-has-effectively-opened-our-border-he-is-once-again-vindicating-trump-opinion/ar-AAOMVf7

    ““My takeaway after I walked through it all, I look over at the sector chief, and I go, ‘Man, I just feel sad.’ He goes, ‘I know. Everyone just feels beaten here,’” Gonzales said.

    Del Rio residents have seen their lives turned upside down. The international bridge has been closed — a lifeline bringing tens of millions of dollars to the local economy. If you’re a small-business owner and your business has somehow survived COVID-19, something like this could easily wipe you out.

    It is hard to imagine that this scene is playing out in America. It is also hard to imagine that our government has failed to secure the border or address this crisis with the seriousness it deserves.

    Which is what makes the other part of this crisis political: Until a photo of a Border Patrol agent on horseback herding migrants back over the Rio Grande to Mexico was circulated on Twitter, Democrats, journalists, and the White House had almost completely ignored or downplayed the 15,000 people who had been living in squalor under the bridge.

    Blue-check Twitter cried foul, claiming that the agent’s long reins were whips and absurdly likening the image to that of a white overseer whipping a slave. Suddenly, not only did press secretary Jen Psaki and the vice president notice, but they along with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the White House press corps fabricated a story about Del Rio — not about the appalling migrant crisis, but about how racist the Border Patrol is.”

    https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/opinion/columnists/life-along-the-border-collapses-as-biden-fiddles

    There are conservatives who voted for this.

    Obudman (5a5600)

  96. 86. Under the constitution, a state legislature can choose Electors any way they want (and since 1836, with the exception of Southh Carolina through 1860, and Colorado in 1876, they have been chosen by popular vote.

    But the choice must be made at he time selected by Congress which is the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November.

    Congress has provided that, if by 6 days before the Electors are to vote, no Electors have been selected, when they had held an election for the purposes of choosing electors, a state legislature may appoint them in such a manner as they may direct.

    So what you could have here is either a law saying that when an election failed, the legislature should choose the electors, but what you could also have additionally is an election law where the election is more likely to be inconclusive. You have to look at the law.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  97. 93. Kevin M (ab1c11) — 9/26/2021 @ 8:43 am

    In my state they have taken it from the People entirely, taking effect when states with a majority of the EV agree to do so also.

    You can imagine what would happen when that’s inconclusive. Of course they haven’t reached 270 yet, and it’s mostly in solidly Democrat states.

    That does not describe New Mexico.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  98. https://www.statutesandstories.com/blog_html/presidential-election-day-act-of-1845-and-the-election-of-1840

    The 60% expansion in the size of the popular vote between 1836 to 1840 is the largest proportional increase between consecutive elections in American history. Much of the increase can fairly be attributed to increased voter turnout due to new campaign techniques and a heated campaign. But, it is believed that voter fraud may also have played a role.

    One method of voter fraud was enabled by the fact that different states held their elections on different days. For example, in 1844 voting occurred in different states from November 1 through December 4. As a result, “floaters” were able to cross state boundaries to vote in another state after voting in their own state. Another name for this practice was “pipe-laying,” because if the floaters were challenged they were instructed to reply that they were in town to lay pipes.

    “Repeaters” were voters who changed their clothes and otherwise altered their appearance to vote in different precincts. This was possible in a day when voter registration was not required.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  99. I read something to the effect that the reins were used as lassoes.

    “Operating in riverine environment, on horseback, is a difficult situation,” he said, adding that agents used reins to try to control horses so that they did not inadvertently injure migrants. He said the actions of one agent on horseback, who appeared to be spinning his reins like a lasso as he loomed over a group in the water, were most likely related to that challenge.

    Yeah, that was an unfortunate choice of words, and he should have known better. The reins are attached to the bit in the horse’s mouth and they control the horse. You don’t even want to hitch the horse with them (and that’s why you see movie cowboys simply draping them over the hitch rail in front of the saloon) because all but the gentlest tug will hurt the horse.

    And that’s why cowboys prefer them split and long as well. As seen in the photo. Split so the horse will not get tangled in the loop should they be dropped, and long so just by dropping them the horse is as good as hitched because it doesn’t like dragging them over the ground (although it does include some training too).

    nk (1d9030)

  100. AOC actuallly grew up in Westchester County and her father is an architect. She herself is a failed entre[peneur – she was going to produce childrens’ books that had characters that were minority people – supposedly like their lives.

    But she had no plans or good plans for having them written or them being any good. She did get a government subsidy of her office space.

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-6791097/Alexandria-Ocasio-Cortezs-defunct-book-publishing-company-owes-1-870-taxes.html

    Brook Avenue Press, which has since been dissolved, reportedly owes $1,870.36 in corporate taxes to New York States

    Ocasio-Cortez was 22 years old when she started the company through a city-funded incubator in The Bronx

    The company was aimed at ‘helping develop and identify stories and literature in urban areas’ for children, but it doesn’t appear to have published a book ..

    ..The publishing house was launched through the Sunshine Bronx Business Incubator, a New York City-subsidized program designed to help small businesses in The Bronx.

    The initiative was headquartered in an old converted factory in the Hunts Point section of The Bronx, where entrepreneurs like Ocasio-Cortez paid monthly rent which ranged between $195 and $275 per person.

    Nonetheless, the company failed to publish a book.

    Her plan to get elected to Congress worked better.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  101. “I like Republican presidents who win re-election.”
    Liz Cheney, Sep 26th, 2021, obviously dissing George W’s dad

    Paul Montagu (5de684)

  102. AOC basically admitting she has no clue regarding the Israel/Palestinian issue….

    https://twitter.com/hillelneuer/status/1441885486830608386?s=21

    Obudman (5a5600)

  103. That does not describe New Mexico.

    In the Trump era, NM is D+10. All state officeholders and a sizable majority in the legislature. The highest-ranking Republican is the Trumpist Rep. Yvette Herrell (R-Oil).

    NM will tend Democrat at least as long as Trump is around.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  104. Under the constitution, a state legislature can choose Electors any way they want (and since 1836, with the exception of Southh Carolina through 1860, and Colorado in 1876, they have been chosen by popular vot

    Assuming that a right willingly transferred 150 years ago can be reclaimed.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  105. Nick Grossnam has had a lot of interesting ideas. This one about how cancel culture grew out of a need to rebel against previous generations is worth some consideration. Based on the millennials I know sincerity as a counter to ironic apathy makes some sense and helps explain the growth of cancel culture.

    https://twitter.com/ngrossman81/status/1442113785804771329?s=21

    Time123 (a5c040)

  106. Obudman: “There are conservatives who voted for this.”

    I didn’t….but you’re missing the clear message….drop Trump. The GOP must do better. The first step is to say “I will not support Trump and I demand someone far more knowledgeable, ethical, and who puts country before self”. Otherwise, we have a GOP trafficking in lies, conspiracies, and personality worship. Do you want to win and govern wisely…or do you want to pee in your pants, howl at the moon, and keep losing elections? It’s big boy time….

    AJ_Liberty (a4ff25)

  107. Worse than Trump /2024 is all the ill informed republicans and independent voters will offer. Some has been grifter, who craves praise from the non believable media. And, of course, the tech giants.

    mg (8cbc69)

  108. Nikki Haley is a conventional pro-business Republican with Executive experience who is much better than Trump

    Tim Scott doesn’t have executive experience but he would be a good candidate.

    Heck Marco Rubio, Rick Scott, and even DeSantis would all be improvements over Trump.

    The only ones I would rule out as unqualified are Tucker Carlson, Don Jr, and Ben Carson….and unwanted: Mike Pence, Ted Cruz, and Josh Hawley

    AJ_Liberty (ec7f74)

  109. Sucks to be the Detroit Lions today.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  110. Trump intensifies war with Georgia GOP leaders at Perry rally
    ………
    The pro-Trump slate took center stage at a rally at the Georgia National Fairgrounds, as the former president pushed to continue to refashion the state GOP in his mold and promoted falsehoods that the state election was tainted by widespread election fraud.
    ……..
    The biggest name of the trio is former Georgia football icon Herschel Walker, who entered the U.S. Senate race last month with Trump’s blessing but has avoided traditional campaigning since then. He mostly stuck to themes of bipartisanship, embracing the criticism that he doesn’t act like a politician as he competes to challenge Sen. Raphael Warnock.
    ……….
    U.S. Rep. Jody Hice, Trump’s pick for Georgia secretary of state, was showered with applause when he promised to “get rid of Brad Raffensperger”……..
    ……..
    And state Sen. Burt Jones, whom Trump endorsed for lieutenant governor, reminded the crowd he supports an audit of the election results and backed a special legislative session that aimed to reverse Biden’s victory in Georgia.
    …….
    Though Trump didn’t promote any rival to Kemp, he made clear he was still searching for an alternative…….

    “Of course, having her, I think, might be better than having your existing governor, if you want to know the truth,” Trump said of Abrams. “Might very well be better.”
    ……. …
    Returning to the scene of his (alleged) crimes?

    Rip Murdock (574a19)

  111. Darling Nikki can’t decide whether she is (or not) on bended knees for Trump. Even Trump sees her problem.

    Rip Murdock (574a19)

  112. Neglected concubine syndrome.

    nk (1d9030)

  113. 113-114, I think Trump might try sampling another kind of brown meat.

    urbanleftbehind (fcf16f)

  114. #111
    That isn’t JEdgar turning in his grave. That is the grave convulsing and trying to vomit JEdgar out. Even the soil gets food poisoning. Hopefully they will inter Comey near JEdgar so we can see a Yellowstone like mudpot belch

    (Apologies to JEdgar in the TV series Bosch)

    steveg (e81d76)

  115. 115
    Rihanna?

    steveg (e81d76)

  116. You need a more or less honest person. That is very hard to get.

    Who can also come up with some original or unique proposed actions and know how to answer criticism.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  117. I didn’t say Nikki was the concubine.

    nk (1d9030)

  118. There were two vaccine mandates scheduled to kick in today or tomorrow in New York.

    One was for health care workers. It was not stopped by a lawsuit, and resulted in New York Governor Kathy Hochul declaring a state of emergency allowing, people licensed in other states and other countries, recent graduates and retired (license expired?) health care professionals to work in New York. People can request or will be given unpaid leave that allows them to retain their medical insurance for a year but does not qualify them for unemployment insurance. The expected shortage is worse in nursing homes causing people to remain in hospitals.

    The mandate for school employees had been put aside temporarily – maybe very temporarily – by a judge.

    It is estimated that 10% to 15% in most categories remain unvaccinated but some have higher concentrations. People who manage to acquire medical or religious exemptions will be assigned to work away from schools.

    The policy for children has changed to limiting the exclusion from school to children who were within 3 feet and unmasked for more tan a few minutes of some chld who tests positive, but this is something virtually impossible to determine.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  119. There are lots of stories I periodically read that tell half the story of how people got out of Afghanistan, sometimes after Sept 1. Many were helped by private parties or by other nations. The Taliban and Pakistani rules are maybe not clear to the people in charge of enforcing them and maybe not fixed in cement so it is possible to argue with them. The “underground railway” is continuing.

    A NYT story just natter of factly says that Biden lied (engaged in a PR stunt) about evacuating more Afghans.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/24/us/afghan-workers-evacuation-nonprofits.html

    …Several leaders of these groups said that the Biden administration raised false hopes when it announced in early August that it would expand access to the U.S. refugee program for their Afghan employees who did not qualify for the special immigrant visas being offered to people, such as interpreters, who had worked for the military. These workers could apply for a new “Priority 2” designation, the State Department said.

    “They were rejoicing that they would get on a plane to the U.S.,” Mr. Schumaker recalled. “The reality was, they were never close to being eligible for an evacuation flight. It was an empty promise.”

    To even apply for the program, applicants had to be outside Afghanistan, they were told later, and they would have to wait at least a year for U.S. authorities to review their cases.

    “The program was a huge red herring; a P.R. stunt,” said Marina LeGree, founder of Ascend, a mountaineering program that aims to develop the physical and mental strength of teenage girls and young women through athletic activities and community service, like mentoring orphans and teaching illiterate women to read. The administration has acknowledged that resettling can be a lengthy process.
    Ascend managed to place eight women instructors who were featured prominently on the group’s website, along with some family members, on an evacuation flight to Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates on Aug. 22. They accomplished it with help from a U.S. military special forces veteran whose sister is a rock climber. Two of the families have been accepted by Denmark; four others by Germany. Two others hope to make it to the United States.

    Ms. LeGree then expanded her effort to others at risk, like the organization’s driver and guards, as well as athletes, many of whom are members of the Hazara minority….

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  120. Many of the NGOs are hoping to be able to continue operating in Afghanistan, but apparently with some different personnel, more guaranteed safety by the Taliban. It’s still early in Taliban rule.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  121. The big difference between Taliban 1.0 and Taliban 2.0 may turn out to be no public executions or amputations, and somewhat more of a connection to the outside world.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  122. Should have been Tulsi Gabbard in that Fox News search link, Steven, she’s gone full Juanita Broaddrick/Rose McGowan.

    urbanleftbehind (c073c9)

  123. Oh – and mostly closed borders by neighboring countries. No refugees.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  124. Any sentient being should shudder over Biden’s comments about the Border Patrol horsemen. And you know what their sin was, right? He’s getting grief from all sides about the border and they made him look badder.

    nk (1d9030)

  125. Biden and his border are worse than Trump.

    mg (8cbc69)

  126. I’ve always thought that existence proofs are the easiest kind to understand. If someone says something is impossible, you can refute that simply by showing that a single example exists. Thus, for example, the Apollo 11 moon landing showed that travel to the moon was possible.

    And so I thought that showing that some other wealthy, advanced nations had lower per capita death tolls from COVID than America showed that we could have done better.

    So, for example, if we had done as well as Germany, at least 300,000 fewer Americans would have died from COVID. (And we should remember that Germany is much more densely populated than the United States, which puts them at a disadvantage in pandemics, especially those spread from person to person.) Similarly, if we had done as well as Canada, at least 400,000 fewer Americans would have died from COVID. And there is no nation more similar to us than Canada. (Although Canada has more space than we do, most of its population is in, or around, large cities such as Toronto, Montreal, and Vancouver.)

    Some find these simple existence arguments unpersuasive, for reasons that so far have escaped me. Do they think Americans are defective, unlike Germans, Canadians, and many other nationalities? (It is an especially odd argument to make since so many Americans are of German descent and English descent. Or, like me, both.)

    And so I have added an argument that, in my opinion, should have settled the matter. Some states have done much better than others; in fact eight American states have lower per capita death rates than Germany’s and two or three match Canada’s. The existence of these relative successes show me that Americans are not defective, and that we could have done much better.

    But these arguments did not persuade some, and so I noted, as anyone can, that some states are now doing much worse than most others and that these poor-performing states, notably Florida and Texas, are following policies intended to please Donald Trump.

    To me, that should have ended the argument, even for the most skeptical, but it didn’t. They didn’t cite numbers — which are available in profusion — or studies, and there are some available, but instead refused to accept the conclusion that this nation could have done better against COVID.

    (Perhaps I should have expected this refusal. As you know, there are still many people who refuse to accept Apollo 11, in spite of seeing it on TV, and hearing the testimony of the astronauts who were there.)

    Jim Miller (edcec1)

  127. Yes, yes, they are.

    nk (1d9030)

  128. John Hinckley, Who Shot President Reagan, Wins Unconditional Release

    I hope Jodie Foster (whom I just saw as a ten-year-old actress in Kansas City Bomber) has beefed up her security.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  129. 130. Well, Hinckley actually is long done with that.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  130. Uh huh, right.

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  131. It never was about Jodie Foster anyway. It was about trying to impress her, maybe. I don;t think it ever made any sense. Now if he was superstious or something, it would have made a sort of sense.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  132. Red Covid
    ……
    The political divide over vaccinations is so large that almost every reliably blue state now has a higher vaccination rate than almost every reliably red state…..

    Because the vaccines are so effective at preventing serious illness, Covid deaths are also showing a partisan pattern. Covid is still a national crisis, but the worst forms of it are increasingly concentrated in red America.
    …….
    It’s worth remembering that Covid followed a different pattern for more than a year after its arrival in the U.S. Despite widespread differences in mask wearing — and scientific research suggesting that masks reduce the virus’s spread — the pandemic was if anything worse in blue regions. Masks evidently were not powerful enough to overcome other regional differences…..

    Vaccination has changed the situation. The vaccines are powerful enough to overwhelm other differences between blue and red areas.
    ……..
    Since Delta began circulating widely in the U.S., Covid has exacted a horrific death toll on red America: In counties where Donald Trump received at least 70 percent of the vote, the virus has killed about 47 out of every 100,000 people since the end of June, according to Charles Gaba, a health care analyst. In counties where Trump won less than 32 percent of the vote, the number is about 10 out of 100,000.
    ……..
    What distinguishes the U.S. is a conservative party — the Republican Party — that has grown hostile to science and empirical evidence in recent decades. A conservative media complex, including Fox News, Sinclair Broadcast Group and various online outlets, echoes and amplifies this hostility. Trump took the conspiratorial thinking to a new level, but he did not create it.
    ………
    In an article this month for Breitbart, the right-wing website formerly run by Steve Bannon, John Nolte argued that the partisan gap in vaccination rates was part of a liberal plot. Liberals like Biden, Nancy Pelosi, Anthony Fauci and Howard Stern have tried so hard to persuade people to get vaccinated, because they know that Republican voters will do the opposite of whatever they say, Nolte wrote.

    ………“Right now, a countless number of Trump supporters believe they are owning the left by refusing to take a lifesaving vaccine,” Nolte wrote. “In a country where elections are decided on razor-thin margins, does it not benefit one side if their opponents simply drop dead?”
    ………

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  133. She best summon a proactive version of The Brave One (20207). She was probably a lot of dudes’ first “what a waste”!

    urbanleftbehind (c073c9)

  134. Anti-Vaccine Cartoonist Ben Garrison Says He’s Got Covid-19, Won’t Go to Hospital
    ……..
    “Yes, it’s definitely Covid and we’ve had all the symptoms. My wife and [I] went out with a couple to a restaurant and the next day all four of us were sick. One of us went to see a doctor and was told she had Covid, and that was the clincher,” Garrison told Gizmodo via email. (Garrison has been banned from Twitter for supporting the insurrection at the U.S. Capitol on January 6.)

    “We’re taking Ivermectin and various vitamins including a lot of Zinc,” Garrison continued, explaining what he’s doing to treat the disease. The cartoonist also notes he’s taking beet root juice. None of this has been proven to treat or prevent covid-19, with monoclonal antibodies and vaccines being the only real ways to fight this pandemic…….
    ……..
    When Gizmodo asked Garrison whether he’d been vaccinated against covid-19, he repeated many of the same conspiracy theories that appear in his cartoons.

    “We will never take their foul spike protein-producing jabs, which are neither safe nor effective. They’re not real vaccines. They’re gene therapy,” Garrison wrote in an email to Gizmodo.
    ……..
    “I would never go to a hospital with Covid. Robert David Steele (a conspiracy theorist who frequently appeared on InfoWars with Alex Jones) did it a few weeks ago and they killed him. The hospitals get extra money for Covid death reports, which is necessary to keep fear ramped up,” Garrison claimed in an email to Gizmodo.
    …….
    Sad!

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  135. 128. Jim Miller (edcec1) — 9/27/2021 @ 7:26 am

    Some find these simple existence arguments unpersuasive, for reasons that so far have escaped me.

    America got exposed first. One place the virus travelled tp early was Milan, Italy because the wedding gown industry, both designers and workers had many people who were associated with Wuhan, China. There were also people from notrthern Italy who t=vidited ski sites. A popular vacation trip for people from New York was the ski slopes/ Not that many people, but some. Many Jews, both from Israel and other places went there, and I suppose people of Italian extraction.

    The virus circulated underground because there would initially be many more mild and even unnoticeable cases than serious ones.

    But as time went on, people would get a higher initial exposure and it would be harder for the body to beat it back. Public health authorities have been ignoring the dose almost entirely. So much so that they did the absurd and dangerous practice of quarantining positive cases together.

    The United States had less warning, and did not impose lockdowns at first. Now, lockdowns only freeze the situation or turn the clock back a little. Australia cut itself off from the world and imposed lockdowns and is still doing it.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/23/world/australia/covid-lockdowns-freedom.html

    There are now two Australias. In Perth, offices, pubs and stadiums are crammed and normal as ever — the payoff for a closed-border approach that has made Western Australia an island within an island. In Sydney, residents are approaching their 14th week of lockdown. The working-class areas with the highest infection rates have faced a heavy police presence, and, until recently, a 9 p.m. curfew and just an hour of outdoor exercise per day.

    Is the sacrifice worth it?

    Australia is at a crossroads with Covid. The confidence and pride of 2020, when lockdowns and isolation brought Covid outbreaks to heel, have been replaced by doubt, fatigue and a bitter battle over how much freedom or risk should be allowed in a Delta-defined future.

    Some states are trying desperately to hold on to what worked before, while New South Wales and Victoria, home to the country’s biggest cities, Sydney and Melbourne, are being forced by Delta outbreaks to find a more nuanced path forward. Prime Minister Scott Morrison has thrown his weight behind a plan to reopen when 80 percent of adults are fully vaccinated. But the road ahead may not be smooth — as shown by protests this week over a vaccine mandate — and state leaders are still insisting that they will go it alone….

    …To some American conservatives, Australia has even become the world’s largest prison — its citizens all but barred from leaving or returning to the country, with governments reflexively locking people in their homes at any sign of the virus.

    But many Australians, while frustrated, see something else. Asked if the sacrifices have been worth it, they look to their neighbors, their community leaders, the millions of people waiting in long lines for vaccines and the tens of thousands of Australians who would have died of Covid without all the restrictions.

    Their answer, with caveats or zeal, has generally been the same: “Yes, it is worth it,” or “Yes, we believe it will bw.” …

    …Epidemics are a test of society’s commitment to the greater good, they argue, and if any country has failed, it’s the United States, not Australia.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  136. We could have done better against Covid in any number of ways — and we could have done worse.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  137. Because the vaccines are so effective at preventing serious illness, Covid deaths are also showing a partisan pattern.

    It is also related to the start if school.

    Each week’s advance of the start of the school year creates as much more Covid in a particular county, compared to other counties in that state, as an extra 1% of the vote that Donald Trump got for president in that county in 2020. ‘

    This may have something to do with the level of herd immunity.

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  138. R. Kelly was found guilty of racketeering and 8 counts of sex trafficking.

    The singer R. Kelly, who for years dominated the world of R&B music, was found guilty on Monday of being the ringleader of a decades-long scheme to recruit women and underage girls for sex.

    After nine hours of deliberations, the jury in the singer’s criminal trial in federal court in Brooklyn convicted him of racketeering and eight violations of an anti-sex trafficking law, after beginning its deliberations Friday afternoon.
    ……..

    Rip Murdock (d2a2a8)

  139. https://www.newser.com/story/311496/ivermectin-linked-to-2-deaths-in-new-mexico.html

    They died, not from taking the ivermectin but because they had Covid 19, althouh in one case it caused kidney faiure, or so they say.

    Officials in New Mexico say calls to poison control centers about the drug have soared over the last year and misuse of the medication has been linked to at least two deaths, the New York Times reports. Dr. David R. Scrase, acting head of the state health department, says 14 people were hospitalized after taking the drug and two of them died. Scrase says the two patients, 38 and 79 years old, had COVID-19 and took the drug instead of approved treatments. He says ivermectin caused kidney failure in one of the patients.

    New York Times link:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/26/us/new-mexico-health-officials-link-misuse-of-ivermectin-to-two-covid-19-deaths.html?campaign_id=9

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  140. Here’s the lasso meme again:

    https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/26/opinion/biden-haitian-migrants.html

    Yes, there were the outrageous images of agents on horseback herding the migrants like cattle, and there was also the administration aggressively deporting the migrants back to Haiti.

    I thinking herding like cattle means a lasso or am I wrong?

    He also writes:

    It seems to me that Biden tried to simultaneously eliminate the horrible optics the migrants present — and to do so as quickly as possible — and blunt the already loud criticism from Republicans that he is mishandling immigration and has an open-borders policy. (No wonder, then, that the migrant encampment beneath the Del Rio bridge has already been cleared.)

    But those Republicans cannot be appeased. No matter what direction Biden takes they will condemn it. So why not take the moral path, the righteous path, the ethical path?

    …. At a certain point, success in one area fails to cover deficiencies in another.

    The Biden administration’s handling of the Haitians was just wrong. It was also heartbreaking and disgusting.

    No White House fact sheet about other policies that benefited Black people can cover that stain. These Black people were treated like animals because Biden was afraid of a Washington full of monsters.

    As is too often the case, Black people become the political pawn, a weight around the ankle or a weapon in the hand. Our humanity is reduced to a calculation or a cause. We can be chased down by horseback-riding agents or flown out by weak-kneed presidents…

    Sammy Finkelman (02a146)

  141. The political divide over vaccinations is so large that almost every reliably blue state now has a higher vaccination rate than almost every reliably red state….

    Yes, but one should avoid making this an IQ test. If Trump had won, it would be the Left that would be resisting the Killer Vaccines. Wingnuts are, well, nuts.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  142. We’re taking Ivermectin and various vitamins including a lot of Zinc”

    This,however, may be an IQ test, if you define self-preservation as a function of intelligence. The man is risking his life (and his wife’s) to prove a stupid political point. If they had children, this would be a custody battle against the State.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  143. The thing though is, that if those reliable red states keep it up for three years, they will have decimated their red ranks and tanked their states’ economies, and reduced themselves to a farce (sic) to be reckoned with in 2024.

    nk (1d9030)

  144. nk (1d9030) — 9/27/2021 @ 5:35 pm

    I hold it to be a good thing when the obese reduce. Was it a bad thing for the Lord to make His chosen people wander in the desert for forty years? May the farce be with them.

    felipe (484255)

  145. It occurs to me that one of the arguments people make against the Covid vaccine mandates is that the mRNA vaccines (Pfizer and Moderna) are utterly new methods of crating immunity and are, as such, unproven. “Experimental!”, they claim, and there is some truth to that. Effective, too, but that’s not the concern here. What the long-term effect of introducing genetic material into a body is (at least to these folks) unclear.

    Whether it is right or wrong, it is not an unreasonable argument.

    So, a humble suggestion: There is a third vaccine (Johnson & Johnson) which uses an approach that has been used for a decade or so — using a harmless viral agent to introduce the spike protein directly, rather than giving genetic instructions to the body to create it. Have Biden announce that, in any vaccine mandate, that anyone can demand the one-shot J&J vaccine instead of the mRNA vaccines, and that any vaccine mandate that does not allow the J&J version is unenforceable.

    (Please don’t ask me where Biden gets these powers, we are past that now.)

    Give the resisters what looks like a victory. If the object is actually to get people vaccinated, a little loss of face is worthwhile.

    Kevin M (ab1c11)

  146. Good thoughts, Kevin. You remain one of my favorite commenters.

    norcal (b9a35f)

  147. This is a great article with a lot of really great content. I am deeply moved. Today is the happiest day of my life. I have to share all these wonderful things with my friends and family around me. Maybe I should tell my soon-to-be-born son. thank you so much. 토토

    toto-times (cc8b3e)

  148. 139. Kevin M (ab1c11) — 9/28/2021 @ 9:08 am

    Give the resisters what looks like a victory. If the object is actually to get people vaccinated, a little loss of face is worthwhile.

    What they need is an exemption if they have immunity acquired from an infection (and free testing to determine that)

    People still had antibodies to the 1918 flu, 90 years later.

    https://www.cidrap.umn.edu/news-perspective/2008/08/researchers-find-long-lived-immunity-1918-pandemic-virus

    Researchers find long-lived immunity to 1918 pandemic virus
    Filed Under: H1N1 2009 Pandemic Influenza; Influenza, General; Pandemic Influenza

    Aug 19, 2008 (CIDRAP News) – A study of the blood of older people who survived the 1918 influenza pandemic reveals that antibodies to the strain have lasted a lifetime and can perhaps be engineered to protect future generations against similar strains

    There are no similar strains.

    It disappeared in the 1920s ,to quote Donald Trump “like a miracle”

    (of course they were infected as small children when the body has a very strong immune response)

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  149. 146. nk (1d9030) — 9/27/2021 @ 5:35 pm

    d reduced themselves to a farce (sic) to be reckoned with in 2024.

    A president is not elected by the popular vote, and the number of representatives in Congress is based on a sate;s population on April 1, 2020 or there is some atemot to correct to that date (Alaska was counted in January, 2020)

    Sammy Finkelman (51cd0c)

  150. 150, noting no videotape and no recollection (21 months to early for me) if that game, was it the young Marion Berrys or young Brett Kavs (praying for a quick recovery from the 2nd C), and Tucker Carlsons?

    urbanleftbehind (8ef85b)

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