Wednesday, July 8, 2020

President of All the People

Suddenly, Joe Biden is actually looking like a candidate for the presidency of all the people of the United States.


First, he has a plan to deal with the COVID crisis.

And, second, he speaks like a President of all the people of the United States.

Here's what I mean.

Biden's plan to deal with the COVID pandemic doesn't rely on killing grandma to save Wall Street.

"Biden offers additional funding and testing to the elderly so that they can safely obtain the things they need and get care without facing increased risk." Please go her for the whole story. 

Here are some important points of Biden's plan:

  • A national program of free, regular COVID-19 testing for everyone, managed by a Pandemic Testing Board that would coordinate the data and provide consistent access. This includes expanding drive through test sites and test availability until no one has to wait, or to expose themselves to potential risk, to be tested for COVID-19. That compares with Trump’s complete withdrawal of the pitiful few federally-managed test sites, the irregular, and unpredictable testing provided by many states, and results that are so difficult to obtain or so slow in coming that they’re worthless.
  • A national program of contact tracing that starts with at least 100,000 new hires and is dedicated to doing nothing but tracking COVID-19 cases, their contacts, and their progress through the healthcare system or in self-isolation. This would work in conjunction with states that are currently throwing up their hands at the impossibility of working through contacts with the available resources. Compare to nothing at all from Trump’s side, because apparently the federal government isn’t a clerk, or a manager, or worth a damn thing with Trump in charge.
  • A consistently managed, sustainable supply chain for PPE, test kits, and safety gear for healthcare workers. Four months into the pandemic, states are again complaining that masks, gowns, gloves, and face shields are all in short supply, just as cases are surging. Compare to Trump, who has set state against state, and dispatched arbitrary amounts of supplies, often punishing blue states for not praising him sufficiently by denying them needed supplies.
  • A team dedicated to looking ahead to needs that may crop up in the future, rather than just addressing the requests of states at the moment. Compare this with … whatever Jared is doing at the moment.
  • A national promise to provide healthcare workers with:
  • priority access to supplies of PPE.
  • additional pay for placing themselves at risk.
  • free housing to workers coming into crisis points.
  • information hotlines and trustworthy on-line consultation.
  • emotional-health support and psychological first aid with a promise that seeking help will not impact future employment.
  • emergency leave for workers who get sick, or need to care for a sick family member.
  • and no, there’s no comparison for any of this.
  • A coordinated global effort to develop treatments and vaccines that doesn’t depend on “a hunch” about any drug, doesn’t involve taking the U.S. our of the World Health Organization, and doesn’t involve the U.S. trying to buy drug manufacturers to deprive other nations of access. Compare with the opposite. Biden is promising to immediately restore the U. S. association with and commitment to the World Health Organization.
  • A guarantee that therapies and vaccines for COVID-19 will be made available to everyone, without allowing price gouging that limits benefits to the wealthy. Compare with … have you seen the price of remdesivir?
  • Consistent national guidelines for reopening businesses and schools that include protections for worker safety, guaranteed sick leave, and guaranteed leave for those caring for a family member. Biden’s plan would also provide systems by which consumers could know that stores were following safety guidelines and were “Safer for Shoppers” while providing small businesses with a “restart package” that would help them retain existing workers and hire new workers while dealing with necessary changes to their business. Compare with chaos, no guidelines, and shoppers being bullied for wearing a mask.

Here's Biden's recent Fourth of July statement. It's the reason I believe he can be the President of all Americans.

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Last Raw Nerve

You know when something bothers you so much that you just can't tolerate it? Some people say, "Leave me alone. You're on my last raw nerve!"

Is this tweet proof enough for you that Mr. Trump would best serve the interests of the United States if he were to resign the office of the Presidency forthwith?

Enough already. Mr.  Trump. You win. You are "undefeated". Please exit the office of the President of the United States and go back now to your Trumpian world.

Or, there's a vacant office waiting for you at the Confederate States of America.

Monday, June 29, 2020

Fashionable Intimidation

Fashionable intimidation in St. Louis, MO
Are firearms toys to be brandished to enhance the owner's stature? Or, intimidate someone?

Is it now fashionable to walk around in public places with a loaded rifle or handgun and several magazines with ammunition at the ready?

Thank God, in most states, it's still illegal to point a weapon at someone or show "...a firearm to someone in an effort to threaten them."

In Missouri, where the recent incident shown in the photo occurred, an “unlawful use of a weapon” charge "will typically result in a class D felony. "If your weapons charge is filed as a class D felony you could be looking at 1-4 years in prison and fines up to $5000. If your charge is filed as a class B misdemeanor you could be facing up to 6 months in jail and up to $500 in fines. If your charge is filed as a class A misdemeanor you could be facing up to 1 year in jail and up to $1000 in fines."

I guess, that's assuming the gun toter doesn't kill or seriously wound someone while pointing.

Sunday, June 28, 2020

Free Your Mind

This morning I offer about four minutes of freedom to help you clear your mind with a glimmer of knowledge.

Give yourself a few moments away from the wretched state of Trumpian "government" and the COVID pandemic. Clear of the onslaught of ceaseless "alternative facts" abundantly flowing out of "mainstream media". Away from FOX News and the endless onslaught of social media misdirection and propaganda.

We have much more to learn about ourselves.

Academically Impossible "Lost Pyramid City" Found In Japan?

Friday, June 26, 2020

When Protectors Become Gangsters

Philadelphia Police Inspector Joseph Bologna Jr., a 30-year veteran, hits Temple University student Evan Gorski in the back of the head with his metal baton.*
How do we protect our  First Amendment rights of assembly and speech when the people we’ve hired to do the protecting are themselves the very bestial, racist thugs who are beating the sh** out of peaceful “protesters"?

The last few weeks have proven that beatings, gassing, and rubber-bulleting will no doubt follow when police confront protesters or, as in Washington D.C., don their blacked-out body armor and face-shielded helmets and take off their name tags, badges, and department identification.

It matters not if the sworn protectors are local police, state police, or federal officers employed by one of a myriad of federal departments, the atrocities committed arise from the opportunity to brutalize unarmed citizens utilizing fists, clubs, or tasers; teargas; mace, pepper spray or an assortment of firearms. It also doesn’t matter to the gangster “law enforcement officers” if the “protesters” are white, black, brown, male, or female, young, or old.

What does appear to matter is the opportunity to beat the sh** out of whoever is at hand. That is the moment we have witnessed our “protectors” have metastasized into Helter-Skelter-like robot gangsters, relishing unleashing violence upon their fellow citizens.

And what of the commanders and politicians who order the sworn police officers into situations in which they can morph into gangsters? Aren’t their hands bloodier than their gangster’s creations pummeling the defenseless?

House Democrats recently passed a police reform bill  - one good effort to protect citizens. But that has already been consigned to Mr. McConnell’s DOA pile, along with hundreds of other urgently need bills.

It seems that if we are to be protected from our “protectors”, well, then, we must create our own Star Trek-like Deflector Shields or an invulnerable Gort* to do the job.

*See CBSPhilly report:

How US police have responded with violence to protests against police brutality -
The Guardian - Jun 12, 2020

Tuesday, June 23, 2020

Voter Suppression

Voting at the Kentucky Exposition Center. Photo credit: WLKY News Louisville
We saw it in Wisconsin, then Georgia and Arizona. Now, Kentucky - maybe.

Voter suppression accomplished by closing polling places, running out of ballots, and voting machine malfunction. All these tactics were used during the COVID epidemic, which alone was good reason not to go vote.

But the pandemic could be considered an “act of God”, like a hurricane or blizzard – no one purposely conspired with Mr. COVID to keep people from voting. At least, not like closing polling locations and forcing people to wait for hours to cast their vote does. No, those things are man made, Republican-made to keep voters from voting.

The other day in Louisville, Kentucky, anyway, voters seemed to have a positive voting experience. Jefferson County had it together at Louisville’s only polling place, the Kentucky. Exposition Center, and the turnout was less than expected for this primary election.

It is likely that many voters stayed away out of fear, lack of transportation, convenience, or employment requirement. And the vote-by-mail program was as screwed-up in Kentucky as it has proven to be in previous state's elections this year.

Still, here we are. The act of voting is not easy. It has gotten a lot harder to vote. In fact, it's a pain in the a__. And that's the whole idea, is it not?. One political party does not want people who might just vote for a Democrat to vote.

Is it not obvious that we must stop the systematic suppression of one of our most cherished “rights”, the right to vote? I believe it is.

How can that be done? it appears that another Constitutional Amendment is now required to make states ensure that the “act of voting” is facilitated by the states in a fair, honest, and timely manner in order to thwart voter suppression.

Voters surprised at lack of long lines at Ky. Exposition Center - WLKY News Louisville
Jun 22, 2020

Monday, June 15, 2020

Our Better Angel

Patrick Hutchinson carries the injured man near Waterloo station in London. Photograph: Dylan Martinez/Reuters
Heroes rise to the moment, doing right without personal regard. Others stand by, frozen in fear or confusion. Still others hide in their bunker.

Patrick Hutchinson was a hero the other day. He acted by carrying over his shoulder an injured white man, a counter-protester, away from danger to safety.

In my mind, Hutchinson is a living example of mankind’s “Better Angel”. He is a hero in a time overflowing with cowards, bigots and bullies.

BLM supporter speaks out after carrying counter-protester to safety, Clea Skopeliti,, 15 Jun 2020. 

“Hutchinson contrasted the intervention with the lack of action taken by the Minneapolis police officers who were involved in George Floyd’s death. “If the other three police officers that were standing around when George Floyd was murdered had thought about intervening, and stopping their colleague from doing what he was doing, like we did, George Floyd would be alive today.”

“I just want equality, equality for all of us. At the moment, the scales are unfairly balanced and I just want things to be fair for my children and my grandchildren.”

"Police said 113 people were arrested on Saturday, including a 28-year-old man detained on suspicion of urinating by a Westminster memorial dedicated to the murdered police officer Keith Palmer, after far-right activists organised a counter-protest to BLM groups. The Metropolitan police said its officers were injured after being kicked, punched or hit by missiles as they faced hundreds of angry demonstrators, who claimed they were protecting statues.

Here's the whole story....

Mariah Carey - Hero - 1993