Thursday, July 30, 2020

Sunday Set (Reprised)...Long May She Run.

July 30th: Hi All...We're away for a few days, mostly at the beach...Sure am missing the Whackadoodle...Just putting this back up to the top as this particular Sunday Set will soon be cycling off the server...We've got a new one in the works.


My best beach buddy, Rosie the Whackadoodle, is no longer with us.

In the end she had a good and pretty long run.

Bigger E. joins me for this Sunday Set which is made up of...

Long May You Run  - Uncle Neil's ode to his first hearse mobile.

Dope City Blues - A collaboration with Mr. Beer 'N Hockey and We.

Angel From Montgomery - Mr. Prine.

Alabama Pines - by a still-then-looking-for-home Jason Isbell. 

Mercy - (all of) The Felice Brothers.

This is the tree crazy kitty kat (not) fat going after the Whackadoodle's collar the other day...Photo by littler e.

Thursday, July 23, 2020

Wearing Shirts Of Camo-Brown, They March Northward.


From the NY Times' Mike Baker:

For the record, here is what Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan had to say:

“Any deployment here would, in my view, undermine public safety,” Ms. Durkan said.

Again, the only clearly discernible rationale for any of this is to provoke a violent response all in the name of having the faux prophecies of the screamers realized.


The Faux Prophecy Of The Screamers.


Why is the Trump administration doing it's best to provoke violent clashes in American cities like Portland while simultaneously serving it all up, red hot, for the TeeVee?

Because, as Michael Grynbaum of the New York Times reports, it makes for fantastic fodder for the screamers:

To his legions of listeners, Rush Limbaugh calls the demonstrators in Portland, Ore., “anarchists” who “hate Americans and America.” He recently made an ominous prediction: “I can see secession coming.”

On Fox News, Sean Hannity describes the scene in Portland as “a literal disaster area — and, yeah, it looks like a war zone.”

On Wednesday, Breitbart News — which features a “Riot Crackdown” page on its website — published an article declaring, “Now would be a real good time to do whatever is necessary to obtain a permit to legally carry a handgun.”

Right-wing outlets and conservative media stars have seized on the weekslong protests in Portland as a rallying cry for law and order, instructing their followers to fear for their safety and blaming Democratic leaders for failing to restore peace...

And if a rampaging secret police force that is literally wearing camouflagish brownshirts can provoke a truly violent response, well, who cares if it destroys a once great country as long as it proves the screamers right.



Wednesday, July 22, 2020

A Cold Day In Hell Arrives...


Tom Ridge is a Republican.

He is also a former member of the US Congress, a former governor of the state of Pennsylvania, and he was George W. Bush's first director of the Department of Homeland Security in the wake of 9/11.

Thus, in no way can Ridge be easily tarred-and-feathered by the screamers as a Surrender-Crat.

This is what he had to say about Donald Trump sending sending secret police, under the banner of Homeland Security and against the wishes of State and local officials, into Portland Oregon:

The nation’s first secretary of the Department of Homeland Security had sharp words for his former agency Tuesday, condemning the Trump administration’s decision to send federal officers into the streets of Portland, Ore. to quell protests, saying it was “counterproductive,” and that it was not the agency’s mission to act as domestic law enforcement.

“The department was established to protect America from the ever-present threat of global terrorism. It was not established to be the president’s personal militia,” ex-Homeland Security Secretary Tom Ridge said during an interview with Sirius XM host Michael Smerconish.

Ridge, the former two-term Republican Pennsylvania governor, who was tapped by President George W. Bush to lead the domestic security agency two decades ago, said “it would be a cold day in hell before I would consent to an uninvited, unilateral intervention into one of my cities.”...


Meanwhile, via the NY Times' Mike Baker's excellent on-the-ground reporting in Portland last night....

How can anyone possibly think that this action is not meant to create chaos that will justify a further, even more vicious clampdown?


Beware The Horror Of The Gorbtgem!


Yesterday we noted that someone, Marky Mark perhaps (?), had opened the previously sealed GordCo, Inc. crypt and let the inanities of Cookie Dough Mike out into the sunlight.

And then, seemingly out of nowhere, came a gaseous release from the good Mr. Coleman:

The Gorbtgem?

Oh, the Horror!

It really does appear that the BC Liberals have cranked up yet another digital influencer /klout klubbish campaign on the internets in an effort to bring back the good old days...Because, suddenly, they're everywhere with carefully curated talking points backed by the 'concerns' of  friendlies (see, for example, above)...Personally, I'm waiting for a certain wacky one out in the valley to go off-book so that he can  invoke the 17th letter of the alphabet, anonymously, of course.


Tuesday, July 21, 2020

The Lid To The GordCo, Inc. Crypt Creaks Open...


The lid to the long sealed GordCo, Inc. crypt creaks open and who should pop out but...

Cookie Dough Mike!

Good grief.

What's the doughboy thing all about Alfie?....Well, Sean Holman's PublicEye archives have that story....Here.


There Is A Real Wall...

...In Portland.

There is a real wall in Portland that the actions of Donald J. Trump has built.

And it is made up of Moms dressed in yellow.

It now forms nightly to protect constitutionally protected protesters from Mr. Trump's unconstitutional secret federal police.

Julia Silverman of Portland Monthly has the story:

...By Monday morning, the so-called Wall of Moms, some of them women whose children had been protesting for weeks, were going viral online. The group of mostly white women dressed in yellow and linking arms at the front of the protesters, pledging to use their privilege to protect others in the crowd from the brunt of the harm.

“I got to the breaking point,” says Eloise Hoatlin, a SE Portland fitness coach, student, and mother. She says she had attended only smaller neighborhood protests thus far, wanting to protect her elderly parents, but on Sunday night was at the front of the crowd facing down the police, separated only by the fabled fence in front of the Justice Center. “I can make all the excuses I want to make. It is fear of a lot of things, but what I am most scared of is fear if we don’t do this. It is a numbers game. We need to start coming out in numbers. And I can be one of those numbers.”...

Here they are, in all their peaceful glory:

Something is happening there.


Monday, July 20, 2020

Your Morning Audio...Travelling In America.


When I was a teenaged kid we piled in our 1970 VW (notso) Microbus and drove to Idaho to visit relatives.

I was reading 'All The President's Men' at the time and my learner's license allowed me to drive, lots, on the freeways.

Still, the trip did not really change my perception of travelling in America which had by then already long been set by Paul Simon's 'America' (covered awhile back, here).

It was a view of things that wouldn't change much until C. and I moved to California years later.

More recently, a tune by a kid named Conor Oberst, who likes to hang out with another favourite, The Felice Brothers, became my new travelling in America song on the strength of one verse, a few chords, and some truth...


Sunday, July 19, 2020

Our Sunday Pick...'Cover Me'


There was an extended period that started in the late 90's and passed through into the early 'aughts that forms a massive hole in my knowledge of anything newly musical.


Pre-tenure-driven, work-a-holism times infinity, times.

That's why.

All of which is just a way of explaining why I knew absolutely nothing about the power-poppish, hook-laden 'Teenage Dirtbag' by Wheatus, despite the fact that it was, and is still, so popular that the band's original Vevo version, which was made for a crappy Amy Heckerling movie called 'Loser',  now has 175 million views.

In fact, the first time I actually paid any attention to it at all was when it appeared in a much different form conjured up by that kid currently riding an indie supernova headed straight for the the mainstream named Phoebe Bridgers:


Anyway, fast forward to yesterday and what does my favourite new musical site, which is called 'Cover Me' throw up?

Why, the five best covers of 'Teenage Dirtbag', of course.

Which, on its own, is great.

But I also enjoyed their parallel-lined treatise on the tune's true impetus:

...Even if you didn’t grow up on Long Island in the ’80s, if you are a true-crime aficionado of a certain age (a horrific classification but here we are), you are likely to be familiar with the case of Ricky Kasso, who murdered Gary Lauwers (both 17) in June of 1984. And if you did grow up there like Wheatus’s Brendan B.Brown (and myself), the whole story is firmly and forever embedded in your psyche, especially if you were a kid or teen at the time. It was both tragic and terrifying.

It wasn’t long before the press found a sensationalistic angle to latch onto regarding the crime and the scapegoating began. When Kasso was arrested for the murder, he was famously photographed wearing an AC/DC shirt replete with a bloody logo and a green cartoon devil. And that little detail, coupled with rumors of the crime being part of a satanic sacrifice ritual, provided all the ammunition needed for those in authority–i.e. parents, teachers and police–to go into irrational overdrive. As naively fantastical as sounds, from that point on, if you actively listened to metal, if you wore tees featuring the bands you loved like Iron Maiden or Black Sabbath, you were heretofore regarded as one of the devil’s loyal soldiers. While this mistrust of metalheads was patently ridiculous, an absurd piece of residual damage based on a single news photo, it really happened. And it was this very notion that led Brendan B. Brown to pen “Teenage Dirtbag”...

'Cover Me' shows up over there on the blog crawler thingy.  It's really a fantastic musical multi-level stratification sort of place to hang out.

Kind of like a cool record store from the old days where the folks working there would let you in on what's what because they were actually nice rather than jerks.

We used to run a regular 'Saturday Night's Alright For Cover Fighting' thing around here...It involved ukulele's, mostly.


Fascism's Hardening Arteries.


Late last week we noted the hardening of Trumpian fascism when his, and his lickspittles, decided to neuter the American CDC while simultaneously taking 'possession' of COVID19 data.

And that was before he and his lickspittles sent anonymized camoflage-clad federal agents into Portland to flood the streets with tear gas as well as scoop people up and throw them into unmarked white vans.

As for now?

Well, there's this:

...On Fox News Sunday, Trump was asked if he would accept the result of the election if he lost to Biden.

“I have to see,” he said. “I have to see. No, I’m not going to just say yes. I’m not going to say no, and I didn’t last time either.”...


Friday, July 17, 2020

America's COVID Tragedy...The Lagging Indicator Catches Up.

From the front page of today's digital NY Times.

Don't think that the +42%, in black, has anything whatsoever to do with 'increased testing'.



Thursday, July 16, 2020

Is The Fascism Hardening?


You may or may not have heard that the Trump Administration has decided to take control of new, emerging COVID-19 data by diverting it from the quasi-independent Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to the more loyal Health and Human Services (HHS) silo.

But it would appear that the directive also includes data disappearing.

Will Feuer of CNBC has the story. Here is his lede:

Previously public data has already disappeared from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website after the Trump administration quietly shifted control of the information to the Department of Health and Human Services.

Since the pandemic began, the CDC regularly published data on availability of hospital beds and intensive care units across the country. But Ryan Panchadsaram, who helps run a data-tracking site called Covid Exit Strategy, said that when he tried to collect the data from the CDC on Tuesday, it had disappeared.

“We were surprised because the modules that we normally go to were empty. The data wasn’t available and not there,” he said. “There was no warning.”...


And how do we know about that 'loyalty' of folks at the HHS?




Wednesday, July 15, 2020

The Mansplaining MLA.

And maybe misogynist also.

One can only wonder if, perhaps, the sun goes over the yardarm early sometimes in Peace River South.


The Malignancy Of The Crazy.



People like Rick Wilson and the fine fellows behind the Lincoln Project fanned every flame for years and years and years to build the Republican base and used it to both get rich and elect their most expedient political friends and paymasters until they couldn't.

So, now they have turned their highly corrosive skills of political destruction to whip up the other 60% of the USian electorate into a frenzy that should frighten all rational, thinking people down South if they can momentarily force themselves to step back a little and think.... What's next?

In the meantime, that rabid base that the Project Boyz built has gone, literally, berserk.

Matthew Rosenberg and Jennifer Steinhauer play it straight up, 'objective', in the pages of the NY Times.

Here is their lede:

A Republican Senate candidate recently declared herself “one of the thousands of digital soldiers” in service of QAnon, a convoluted pro-Trump conspiracy theory about a “deep state” of child-molesting Satanist traitors plotting against the president. A congressional candidate in Colorado who made approving comments about QAnon bested a five-term Republican incumbent in a primary last month.

And then there is Marjorie Taylor Greene, a Georgia Republican who is perhaps the most unabashedly pro-QAnon candidate for Congress and has drawn a positive tweet from President Trump. She recently declared that QAnon was “a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to take this global cabal of Satan-worshiping pedophiles out.”

More than two years after QAnon, which the F.B.I. has labeled a potential domestic terrorism threat, emerged from the troll-infested corners of the internet, the movement’s supporters are morphing from keyboard warriors into political candidates. They have been urged on by Mr. Trump, whose own espousal of conspiracy theories and continual railing against the political establishment have cleared a path for QAnon candidates...

It makes the Tea Party looks like pikers, no?

And if you think the malignancy hasn't spread north to Canuckistanmikitaville you would be wrong...Stay tuned.


Tuesday, July 14, 2020

An Old Lotuslandian Sportswriter's Statement I Can Get Behind.


The other day a few ink-stained wretches were noting the importance of Kim Bolan to the Vancouver Sun on the Twittmachine.

Which is not something I would ever disagree with.

And then, suddenly, out of the blue, one of them, old VSun sports reporter Mike Beamish, had this to say:

Truth, that.

Obvious even.

Not that that other old sports reporter around here, the one named Ron, would ever say it, however.


The Russian Foreign Asset Keeps On Keeping On.


The National Rifle Association is the self-annointed, tax-exempting keeper of the automatically weaponized 2nd amendment flame in the United States.

And in September of 2019 a Senate probe also deemed it a Russian foreign asset. Tim Mak had that story for NPR:

The National Rifle Association acted as a "foreign asset" for Russia in the period leading up to the 2016 election, according to a new investigation unveiled Friday by Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore.
Drawing on contemporaneous emails and private interviews, an 18-month probe by the Senate Finance Committee's Democratic staff found that the NRA underwrote political access for Russian nationals Maria Butina and Alexander Torshin more than previously known — even though the two had declared their ties to the Kremlin...

And now, nine months later, the fine folks from the NRA just keep on keepin' America safe for mass murderers:



Monday, July 13, 2020

The Smear Merchants Of Death.


It is an old political axiom that you only smear those you fear most.

But in olden times (i.e. back when societal norms still meant something) that axiom only applied to one's political rivals.

In the land of Trump, however, that is no longer the case. Even when lives are on the line.

Margaret Haberman in the New York Times has the story which appears, in true insider accessian fashion, to have been written as an anonymous source-fuelled response to an earlier leak-driven story in the Washington Post.

Here is Ms. Haberman's lede:

President Trump’s advisers undercut the nation’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, over the weekend, anonymously providing details to various news outlets about statements he had made early in the coronavirus outbreak that they said were inaccurate.

The move to treat Dr. Fauci, who has led the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases for decades, as if he were a warring political rival came as he has grown increasingly vocal in his concerns about the national surge in coronavirus cases, as well as his lack of access to Mr. Trump over the past several weeks. It has been accompanied by more measured public criticism from administration officials, including the president...

It would seem to me, given the graphic below of the lagging indicator (in black, from the digital front page of today's NYT) moving upward once again, that this alone should be impetus enough to drive all thinking USians, regardless their political stripe, to do their darndest to ensure that Mr. Trump and his lickspittles are no longer in power come January.


In case you missed it....Here is today's Morning Audio:


Your Morning Audio....Longtime Blogging.

49 degrees 17' 59" North
124 degrees 37' 0" West

The first thing I wrote, in this form, was titled "The Gospel According To HR MacMillan".

I posted in June.

June of 2004.

So, why, exactly, has a digital dinosaur like myself been doing this for so long?...

The tune covered at the end of the audioblog, above, is called 'ThePamphleteer'....It was penned by Winnipeg's John K. Sampson and it was first recorded before the HR MacMillan post mentioned above was penned (i.e. back when the Weakerthans were just getting going)...The girls and I had tickets to go see Samson, solo, back in May of this year...Of course, that was a show that never happened.


Sunday, July 12, 2020

One More Thing Chuck Colson And Roger Stone Have In Common.


Charles Colson was Richard Nixon's Rat F*cker-In-Chief who did his best (i.e. worst) work deep within the plumbing.

And, when the real deal finally went down, Colson was one of the small number of the former President's men who was convicted and actually went to prison.

And then this happened, as chronicled by the NY Times' Tim Weiner upon Colson's death in 2012:

...Mr. Colson went to prison after pleading guilty to obstructing justice in one of the criminal plots that undid the Nixon administration. After having what he called his religious awakening behind bars, he spent much of the rest of his life ministering to prisoners, preaching the Gospels and forging a coalition of Republican politicians, evangelical church leaders and Roman Catholic conservatives that has had a pronounced influence on American politics...


Fast forward to 2020 and, well, let's let the ultimate insider-access bow-weevil, Howard Fineman of the WaPo, tell the (so-called) story:

When I called Roger Stone early Friday evening, he was in the midst of doing an online interview with an evangelical Christian leader. He let me listen in. It was, shall we say, a revelation. Until recently about as un-devout as a lapsed everything could be, he earnestly recounted for an equally earnest interviewer how he’d been saved by Jesus Christ at a Franklin Graham rally.

“I stood up,” Stone said. “I accepted Christ as my savior. I felt like a cement block had been lifted from my chest.” His newfound faith had given him a ticket to eternal salvation and, perhaps, a stay-out-of-jail card.

When Stone finished, he got on the line with me.

“I know there is a lot of skepticism,” he said in the audial version of a straight face. “Who knows? A year from now you may be calling me Reverend Stone! What else am I going to do with all these white suits I own?”....

Of course, there is absolutely no truth to the truth, errrr, rumour that there is an ulterior motive in Mr. Stone's latest bout of madness.

And, just to be clear, this wee bit of prop-gaming-deflector-spike-spin (i.e. Stone's talking to Fineman) took place BEFORE the official commutation came down.


Friday, July 10, 2020

Will Alberta Soon Have A Shame-Based Healthcare System?


Doctors thinking of leaving Alberta?

The UCP's Minister Of Health will show/shame them!


Thursday, July 09, 2020

Now She Wants Data?


Earlier in the week we noted that the Public Health Department in Tulsa Oklahoma is still doing its job.

And now the Health Director has spoken up about the aftermath a certain 'event' held in his fair city  a little over two weeks ago.

Dan Whitcomb of Reuters has the story:

A controversial campaign rally held by President Donald Trump in Tulsa, Oklahoma, last month likely contributed to a rise in the number of coronavirus cases there, a top local health official said on Wednesday.

Tulsa has confirmed hundreds of new cases of COVID-19 over the past two days, said Dr. Bruce Dart, health director for the city and county.

Asked by a reporter if Trump's campaign event at the Bank of Oklahoma Center on June 20 could be responsible for that surge, he said: "In the past few days, we've had almost 500 cases. And we know we had several large events a little over two weeks ago, which is about right. So I guess we just connect the dots," Dart said, apparently referring to the rally and accompanying protests...

And how has the Trump administration/campaign responded?

Well, it has sent its latest lying quisling into the breech:

...White House spokeswoman Kayleigh McEnany said she had not seen data to support Dart's conclusions...

And followed it with yet another who actually provides the data:

..."There were no health precautions to speak of as thousands looted, rioted and protested in the streets and the media reported that it did not lead to a rise in coronavirus cases," Trump campaign spokesman Tim Murtaugh said.

"Meanwhile, the President’s rally was 18 days ago, all attendees had their temperature checked, everyone was provided a mask, and there was plenty of hand sanitizer available for all. It’s obvious that the media’s concern about large gatherings begins and ends with Trump rallies," Murtaugh said...



Wednesday, July 08, 2020

If Renewable Power Costs Are Coming Down...

...Why Does The IPP Industry Still Need 'Security'?

The NDP government of British Columbia appears to be taking tentative steps to dismantle GordCo, Inc's IPP protection racket.

Doug Penner of the Vancouver Sun has the story. Here is his lede:

The NDP government is moving to scrap the province’s legislated requirement that B.C. remain self-sufficient in electricity supply, a centrepiece of the previous government’s green-energy policy.

Government, in its legislative agenda for this session, tabled amendments to the Clean Energy Act, which include stripping out the legislation’s definition of energy self-sufficiency.

Energy and Mines Minister Bruce Ralston characterized it as a public-policy shift away from a measure that the NDP disagreed with when put in place in 2010, which simply gives B.C. Hydro some leeway in preparing its next major demand estimate.

“Eliminating it will enable Hydro, give it a bit more flexibility to purchase clean energy at the most affordable prices from within and without the province,” Ralston said...

As you might imagine the fine folks behind years and years and years (and future mandated/contracted years and years and years) of inflated fixed prices are not happy with this because of 'good faith', 'rules' and 'security' and all that:

...“It just doesn’t make sense to us to take this action now,” said Laureen Whyte, executive director of Clean Energy B.C., the industry group that represents independent power producers. “Essentially, what (the province) is doing is looking to import electricity instead of creating it here, along with the jobs and economic development and taxes that go with that.”

Independent power producers (IPPs) now supply B.C. Hydro with about a quarter of all its electricity under more than 120 long-term contracts with the utility after a decade-and-a-half of growth under the previous government.

“What this means for investors is that they have invested in this jurisdiction, in good faith, by the rules, understanding that there is a future for IPP technology,” Whyte said. “(The amendment has) kind of sent a message back to the investment community that, you know, maybe it’s not a secure place to be investing in as they thought.”...


How much has all that fixed price 'security' for investors from the time of GordCo Inc. cost us (i.e. British Columbians who actually do the paying)?

Well, back in 2010 it was 'only' a couple of hundred million dollars:

...In fiscal 2010, B.C. Hydro spent $568 million to buy 8.9 million gigawatt hours worth of electricity from independent producers at an average price of $63.85 per megawatt hour, according to its annual report. In the same year, the utility spent $311 million to generate some 42.1 million gigawatt hours from its own power dams at an average price of $7.19 per megawatt hour...

But last year, 2019, it had ballooned to almost a billion with a 'B':

...The amount of private power B.C. Hydro buys, by fiscal 2019, ballooned to $1.2 billion for 14.2 million gigawatt hours at an average price of $87.52 per megawatt hour, according to last year’s annual report. In the same year, it spent $332 million to generate 42.2 million gigawatt hours from its own facilities at an average price of $7.87 per megawatt hour...

And, as Norm Farrell has pointed out many, many times, the fix is in for tens of billions down the road:

...Since (Gordon) Campbell’s friend Larry Bell promised to assist private producers, BC Hydro has purchased almost $14 billion in power from IPPs—most at 2x to 4x market price—and is contracted to buy more than $40 billion worth of additional electricity....


But, returning to that solid story from the VSun's Mr. Penner,  according to the IPP flackhackery we should all stop worrying about all that securitized price gouging in perpetuity because...

Prices are coming down!

...Costs for all renewable power producers have come down considerably since, Laureen Whyte (of Clean Energy BC) said, so new B.C.-based IPP developments would be equally competitive.

Whyte said the industry has seen new wind-farm developments capable of delivering electricity at $28 per megawatt hour, versus an average cost of $101 per megawatt hour in 2009. She is familiar with solar-power developments with electricity as cheap as $32, versus $323 per megawatt hour a decade ago.

Whyte said her group believes “a lot more work should be done collaboratively” between B.C. Hydro and independent producers as the utility works on its next integrated resource plan.

“We see independent power production as complementary to the energy that B.C. Hydro provides,” she said...

The pretzel logic, above, is truly breathtaking.



Tuesday, July 07, 2020

Atlas Grubbed.


From Open Culture:

Finally bowing to public pressure, the Trump administration, has revealed which companies received loans from the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) created to support small businesses during COVID-19...


....Add to the list the Ayn Rand Institute--an organization named after Ayn Rand, the Russian writer who exalted the self-reliant individual and criticized social welfare programs that support the vulnerable. As she wrote in The Virtue of Selfishness, “The right to life means that a man has the right to support his life by his own work (on any economic level, as high as his ability will carry him); it does not mean that others must provide him with the necessities of life.” In short, if you can't make it, you're on your own...

Additionally, it would appear that the latest candidate for the American presidency has taken the same route with his own 'small' business.

Elyna Lyn Gros has that story in Forbes:

On the heels of his announcement that he is running for president, documents reveal that billionaire Kanye West’s fashion company Yeezy received more than $2 million through the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) — he owns 100% of the company which Forbes estimates brought in close to $1.3 billion in 2019...

And just who, exactly, would the good Mr. West take voters from if he were to get on the ballot in a decent number of states?


Monday, July 06, 2020

Even In Tulsa, Functioning Government Agencies Matter.


Recently, the Tulsa Health Department (THD) laid out the bad news for its citizens:

With the uptick in positive cases, THD has noticed these trends:

  • For the week of June 14 to June 20, new cases were increased by 92%
  • The 18 – 35 age group, representing over 40% of all new cases, had a nearly 90% increase in new cases last week
  • The age group of 36 – 49 is the second largest group to have new cases, with 28% of new cases.
  • Hospitalizations for the age group of 18 – 35 saw a 133% increase over the previous week, and that group represents 25% of all hospitalizations...

However, because of the work it had done on contact tracing, it had specifics regarding sites of viral transmission for its citizenry, not to mention all of us, that matter:

...During our contact tracing of positive cases, there are locations routinely coming up as places where clusters of exposure have taken place.

Our epidemiologists have identified transmissions that have occurred at faith-based activities, funerals, house gatherings and other small events.

Our public health colleagues in Oklahoma City have dubbed these and other locations as the “Serious Seven.” Locations where disease transmission is likely to occur, because they involve larger numbers people in close contact.

These Serious Seven: weddings, funerals, faith-based activities, bars, gyms, house gatherings and other small events.

This doesn’t mean every one of these locations aren’t taking the right public health measures, it’s just locations that have been identified as places where risk of spread is higher due to close contact settings.

We are not seeing a large amount of positive cases from grocery stores likely due to social distancing measures in place. It is still important to wear a mask when entering a store or other retail environment...

Enough said?

Tip O' The Toque to Mike The Mad Biologist.
What's that subheader all about Alfie?....This.


Sunday, July 05, 2020

The Reagan Doctrine Writ (Very, Very) Large.


That was then:

"I've always felt that the nine most terrifying words in the English language are: I'm from the Government, and I'm here to help."

This is now:

"Thousands have complained to the (US Occupational Safety and Health Administration) OSHA about unsafe working conditions due to Covid-19. OSHA has not inspected a single workplace."

Just to be very clear, regardless what the superfine fellows at the Lincoln Project might want USians to believe in the short term, the Republican party is still full of Republicans.


Friday, July 03, 2020

The Never Ending US Attorney Massacre.


First it was Washington, on May 18th:

Attorney General William P. Barr has installed a new top deputy at the federal prosecutor’s office in Washington, raising concerns that a key U.S. attorney’s office handling multiple investigations that are of interest to President Trump is becoming further politicized...


...The upheaval comes as Barr has opened a criminal review of the handling of the 2016 inquiry into Trump’s campaign, and taken steps to facilitate the president’s calls to investigate his likely 2020 Democratic opponent, former vice president Joe Biden, and his family.

The U.S. attorney’s office in Washington is a traditional choice to handle such cases. The office has 300 lawyers and jurisdiction to prosecute both national security cases and political corruption across the federal government along with local and federal felonies in the District.

Accusations that Justice Department leaders were exerting control over the office were galvanized in February when Barr shifted out initial Trump appointee Jessie K. Liu as U.S. attorney before (Roger)Stone’s sentencing. Liu had become a focus of Trump’s anger after a grand jury balked at indicting former acting FBI director Andrew McCabe.

Barr replaced Liu with his own counselor, Shea, as interim U.S. attorney. Shea brought in another aide of Barr’s top deputy to serve as the D.C. office’s chief of staff, and the pair immediately stumbled into a crisis in Stone’s case.

Then it was Manhattan, on June 20th:

President Trump on Saturday fired the federal prosecutor whose office put his former personal lawyer (Michael Cohen) in prison and is investigating his current one (Rudolph Giuliani), heightening criticism that the president was carrying out an extraordinary purge to rid his administration of officials whose independence could be a threat to his re-election campaign...

And yesterday, it was Brooklyn:

The U.S. attorney in Brooklyn, New York, is moving to high-ranking post at the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, giving Attorney General William Barr a chance to put a fresh stamp on another of the nation's top prosecutors' offices.

Richard Donoghue, the U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of New York since January 2018, will become principal associate deputy attorney general, reporting to Deputy Attorney General Jeffrey Rosen, a spokesman said....

But that last one, it's just a promotion, so nothing to worry about there, right?

Well, there is that most interesting thing that Mr. Donoghue, formerly of the borough that the Dodgers and Mr. Kotter built, and his team of prosecutors were involved with:

Escalating one of the investigations into President Trump’s inaugural committee, federal prosecutors ordered on Monday that its officials turn over documents about donors, finances and activities, according to two people familiar with the inquiry...


...The United States attorney’s office in Brooklyn is separately investigating whether inaugural officials helped foreigners illegally funnel donations to Mr. Trump’s inaugural committee using so-called straw donors to disguise their donations, people briefed on that inquiry said...


It sure would be a shame if something were to happen to that nice little US Attorney's office you have there.


Can't quite remember the details of the original US Attorney massacre on a certain Saturday night?...Here's a nice, little six minute primmer...