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April 18, 2020

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Well, they are wearing camo.

You can't see them to even shoot at.

Even the big fat guys who blend in to the background Vietnamese gook jungle they so miss, and probably did miss, having Limbaugh and Cheney anal cysts or Trump's ingrown toenails at that very time, are probably closer to fatal coronaries (in the coal mine) than Rapture via the Covid Godsend.

I ran across a couple of Orwell's essay collections in college and was amazed by them. He was incredibly good at writing thoughtful essays. Thanks for the excerpt, nous.

My favorite—

http://www.george-orwell.org/Notes_on_Nationalism/0.html

You have to read it remembering that it applies in varying degrees to every part of the political spectrum, especially including one’s own. Though of course the fun is in thinking how it applies to all those other idiots who think differently from your own group. The part about atrocities is dead on.

“Nationalism” wasn’t the best label. One could just say “ ideologue” or “ political partisan”.

I actually know a pro wrestler and he's a really sweet guy. Quite amazing skills, the ability to take the falls etc really requires a high level of training. I've done a lot of martial arts and I find that the people who are trained are more often than not quite gentle and do what they can to avoid confrontation

lj, my point was that, off stage, they generally don't even pretend to go looking for fights. Like, in that way, the militia types. Except that, unlike the militia types, they don't go looking for no-risk massacres either.

Frum considers them Trump’s plan B.
https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/04/trump-trading-lives-poor-economic-growth/610264/

The 1919 San Francisco Anti Mask League....
https://twitter.com/timkmak/status/1251936242834563073

Thanks wj. not sure precisely what I was reacting to. Maybe something along the lines of 'if they are ostentatiously carrying firearms, they have automatically ruled themselves out in terms of from representing those that some here are so concerned need representing', and because they are so concerned with engaging in a pissing contest, you can't really take what they are doing at face value.

As I said, sneak attack with itching powder seems to me the most appropriate for this kind of guys. Just keep out of (gun) sight.

Hartmut,
for a truly effective itching powder sneak attack, you should enlist the help of the Underwear Gnomes, because that's the best target.

Where's the profit in that?

Read Nigel's Frum piece, please:

I've been remiss the last couple of days by not recapping the murderer's campaign whistle stops from the safety of his protective fascist republican bubble wrap.

Here is the lout fuck killer gazing from on high, the same view favored by Charles Whitman and Stephen Paddock, peering down at the Marty, McKinney, bc, Orwell, Thullen, Russell, Donald, Slart, Sebastian and Janie little specks, the inconsequential monads, skittering about below.

He's musing about which ones will die. All are inconsequential to him, but some may be temporarily useful to him ... until they are not.

I don't know how he, the vermin fuck elected by real people fucks, can tell the difference from that view regarding which one is which. Even the real people dots who elected him to murder their "other" real people enemies are difficult to distinguish from ......... their enemies.

All are inconsequential specks.

The dots APPEAR identical and equal from that imperious, sociopathic, penthouse view. It appears he can't tell one from another which except by polling data compiled by neutral, humane observers KellyAnne Conway, Stephen Miller, Mitch McConnell, and Lindsay Graham, so the choosing of who lives and who dies IS happening via method, as are the blessings fake Christian murderer Mike Pence is malignly and non-randomly bestowing upon His chosen dots.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=21h0G_gU9Tw

It is interesting that the dots far below could bring their killer far above into clearer focus via mounted precision scopes and lenses, but the "real people" among the dots who carry such equipment in public instead are viewing the "other" real people dots next to them, now targets, through those instruments.

and in Ohio, these guys showed up.

Thanks Donald, for the Orwell essay.

I value your presence here, regretting only its intermittent frequency.

I agree with everything Orwell wrote in the essay, including those bits and categories that apply to me, but I am self-aware enough to see that they apply.

We live in a binary time, so one must get thee self into one category or another, for fear of getting caught in the crossfire.

Orwell also agrees with everything he himself wrote, including those sections that apply to him while he was fighting in the service of the pro-Republic militias.

Here's some Orwellian commentary applied to Orwell, who of course is indispensable, not in spite of, but because is all too human.

https://www.theguardian.com/books/2017/may/06/george-orwell-homage-to-catalonia-account-spanish-civil-war-wrong

By the way, corporations are real people too, but with bigger budgets, offshore financial hidey holes, and tax loopholes not available to me.

They don't appear as dots like I do from Mitt Romney's point of view.

From cleek's link:

Obviously, nobody likes de facto house arrest per se. But you know what’s also unpopular? Choking to death alone, a few people theoretically willing to die for Daddy Trump or to eat in at TGI Friday’s notwithstanding.

The harm to the economy from the shut-downs is nothing compared to what the harm, both economic and otherwise, would be from the virus if allowed to have its way with us. In that light, the shut-downs are a net benefit, economic and otherwise, because you can't pretend the virus isn't now part of the baseline against which you're measuring the results of various courses of action. The harm is from the virus.

Astroturf:

https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2020/04/jacinda-ardern-new-zealand-leadership-coronavirus/610237/

As the professional games of baseball and football found out, Astroturf leads to career-ending injuries.

Conservative liars, are there any other kind, want you belief that this bowel movement, shat from the colons of anonymous fascist plutocrats and operatives, has grass roots.

The whole point of Astroturf is to avoid grass roots, while looking like the real thing.

Like Trump's hair plugs and KellyAnne's dark roots, all of it is fake, except for the dog shit, because republican dogs will shit on any surface.

Wrong link there, although the New Zealand article should be read too.

Here:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Artificial_turf

I'm always twenty cites ahead of my opportunity to use them.

Gohmert needs to be put through a different sort of misting therapy:

https://juanitajean.com/louie-gohmert-he-can-even-make-germans-laugh/

Red States elect mass murderers.

How large is the largest protest and exactly how many protests have there been?

The two pics I've seen--LJ's and Cleek's--show classroom sized crowds of patent losers.

What is the big deal? These clowns don't even qualify as pikers compared to OWS and Antifa.

Talk about pearl-clutching.

Anyone with half a brain is sheltering in place, and wearing masks and gloves when forced to go out. Exploding heads over this small crowd of yahoos doesn't make any sense. The very worst case is that they make each other sick. They are no threat to anyone who stays home.

They are no threat to anyone who stays home.

Not true. They are a threat to the people in the ambulances they block. And they are a threat to everyone if they spread the virus further. Sheltering in place and wearing masks and gloves is no perfect solution. It's as perfect as can be when everyone does it. It's becomes less and less perfect as more people don't do it.

Regime cleavage...Mckinney looks at the protests and sees OWS; I look and I see OKC.

I should add that everyone can't simply stay home. They'll starve eventually. Someone has to go get the food, even if it's a delivery service.

You don't need as many bodies on the front lines when the bodies are carrying semi-automatic military grade weaponry as opposed to say, as in OWS' case, holstering loaded cans of pinto beans for those potential gas attacks.

And where is Antifa?

They've got the masks, so what's up?

What have OWS and Antifa been doing during the pandemic? It's not just about the numbers of people. It's about the context.

Besides that, heads exploding = writing stuff on a blog.

Speaking of masks, in the first photographs of the Michigan clowns, several were wearing medical masks with their camo and popguns.

In the photos since, those particular guys are either missing or have removed their masks.

Was this a decision made by the militias, fearing they were sending a mixed message (I'll shoot ya, but I'm not gonna breath on ya, seems a trifle touchy in the wrong direction) or did the media photographers counsel the militias that they would be more scarily in-character photogenic if they got rid of the masks.

I'm working on my post regarding my visit to the Denver hoopdeedo yesterday.

It will be impressionistic mostly, for the impressionable.

Also, a much longer one on Wet Markets the world over, including not so long ago on Fulton Street in NYC, since moved way up town.

Don't say I didn't warn ya.

"COVID-19 lockdown protests are spreading and so is misinformation about them. As a series of demonstrations against COVID-19 lockdown orders sweep the U.S., protesters have shown wildly varying degrees of responsibility and realism. Some have been staying 6 feet from others or even protesting from within cars, while simply asking for some shutdown leeway for local businesses and entrepreneurs who are willing to take extra steps to keep pandemic-times customers safe. Alas, others have been crowding up against each other in large numbers—without masks or any other precautions—while suggesting that the entire coronavirus outbreak might be a hoax.
...
After last week's protest around the Michigan Capitol, a picture of someone holding a large swastika flag that said "TRUMP PENCE" began circulating on social media as a sign of the supposed Nazi leanings of Trump supporters and the people protesting. But after some viral outrage about the kind of people the conservative organizers of these protests were in cahoots with, it turns out that the picture in question actually came from a March 2 Bernie Sanders rally in Boise, Idaho."

Don't Get Fooled by Fake Photos of Coronavirus Lockdown Protests: Plus: Drudge challenges Trump on traffic claims, France taxes links, COVID-19 in Ohio prisons, and more...

The two pics I've seen--LJ's and Cleek's--show classroom sized crowds of patent losers.

My picture was a link to a video report that began

Thousands of protesters in cars and on foot have flouted Michigan’s stay-at-home orders to demand the state reopened.

But you know how these liberal newspapers lie.

Charles writes
Alas, others have been crowding up against each other in large numbers—without masks or any other precautions—while suggesting that the entire coronavirus outbreak might be a hoax.

Alas, you lie down with dogs, you are going to get fleas.

OWS?

Other Way, Sucka?
One World Socks?

I try to keep up but there's a lot to keep up with.

Also, show of hands - who has actually ever seen an Antifa person in real life, i.e. not on TV or YouTube?

My hand's up FWIW. Anybody else?

classroom sized crowds of patent losers.

In MI, not people. Cars.

They are no threat to anyone who stays home.

Except the people who stay home with them. And the people who can't stay home, that they encounter.

Watch for COVID spikes in MI, OH, and elsewhere over the next two weeks. KY is already seeing it.

To McKinney's point about the small numbers of fringy knuckleheads, from Nigel's Atlantic link:

They are protesting in aggressively obnoxious ways to entice the TV cameras to overlook their tiny numbers and fringe membership: Confederate-flag wavers, militia cosplayers, anti-vaxxers. The Lansing protesters used their cars to impede ambulances. They brandished guns on the steps of the step legislature. Behave obnoxiously enough, and the television cameras will disregard your scanty numbers. The Lansing protests have been joined by even smaller protests in California and North Carolina, each numbering fewer than 100 people.

And of course, America’s most powerful cable-news network is more than a passive victim of disinformation. As with the Tea Party a decade ago, so now with the anti-lockdown protests: Fox News acts as the co-author of the pseudo-events staged for its cameras, as in this fanciful graphic showing half the United States colored red in protest, as if the whole country were aflame rather than a few hundred oddballs.

Kentucky.

Is the increase of cases related to the protests? I.e., do protestors, or people who have been in contact with protestors, figure disproportionately among those getting sick?

I don't know.

Is it asinine to gather publicly in unsafe ways to protest measures against the spread of the virus *while the number of cases in your community are spiking*?

I know my answer to that question.

Look at who is sponsoring this stuff and ask yourself if you think they are interested in helping working folks get through this in one piece, healthy and without financial hardship.

People need to wise the hell up.

OWS = Occupy Wall Street

Just as here in soon-to-be-extinct America, you have fascist leaders in power leading the protests in favor of Covid-19, their demagoguery interrupted only by their incessant coughing.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-brazil/brazils-bolsonaro-attacks-coronavirus-lockdowns-as-supporters-take-to-streets-idUSKBN2210V1

It's a well-organized murderous world wide movement, no different there than it is here.

It's not how many humans Bolsonaro, not only a Covid-19 victim, but a pro-virus partisan, will kill with the Covid droplets in his coughing, it's how many Brazilians will it take to kill Bolsonaro?

One ... to pull the trigger.

The rest have their thumbs up their asses.

Really chaps my ass that these media outlets aren't covering Occupy Wall Street and Antifa's running rampant (cause I know they have to be, McT said they were and he wouldn't fib) while just showing these losers.

Here's a Texas classroom, but I guess things are always bigger in Texas...
https://twitter.com/mannyNYT/status/1251564861257113602?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw%7Ctwcamp%5Etweetembed%7Ctwterm%5E1251564861257113602&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Ftwitter.com%2FmannyNYT%2Fstatus%2F1251564861257113602

OWS = Occupy Wall Street

ok, thanks. the relevance is unclear, but I appreciate the 411.

Also, Ohio.

Nice guys.

And I'm wondering if McT caught Alex Jones' visit.

https://twitter.com/mannyNYT/status/1251562213774692353

Harass a Sandy Hook parent, do an anti lockdown protest, hawk some colloidal silver. busy busy busy. Give him Obwi's best McT...

Note in the Bolsonaro link:

The same pro-viral Bolsonaro protesters demanding freedom from social distancing and the stay-at-home strategies call for a return to murderous authoritarian military rule called AI-5, and please confuse it with AR-15.

The deadly incoherence of the worldwide murderous conservative movement never fails.

Drudge?

Now feuding with trump and limbaugh and company.

Fuck him too .. hard.

Swiftboater, trafficker in Russian/Eastern European astroturfing against Hillary, including fucking lies repeated here regarding her health during the 2016 campaign, which she did NOT fucking lie about (yeah, Clinton's flu was a brain tumor, long cancer, terminal syphilis, but Covid-19? .. nothin to see here) race baiting against the Muslim witch doctor in the White House, on and on.

Puke.

Drudge will be hung by the neck alongside the rest of them when things go twist. Do I need to add "literally"?

His little Trotsky act now does not convince.

To misquote Joe Cocker: "He can leave his dumb hat on."

I can't tell. Is everything getting funnier, or is everything going the opposite way?:

https://talkingpointsmemo.com/news/russia-coronavirus-protest

Ok, I found this funny, but I apologize if you do not. Via Hank Smith. I think it captures, for lack of a better word, the absurdity of the situation. Models predicting nothing, yet real reports from real health care workers to be concerned, arrests for playing in the park but you can purchase lottery tickets, etc.:

Coronavirus guidelines (maybe rules). You may be prosecuted for breaking these rules depending on the county and state in which you live. However, always remember that the federal government is in charge.

1. You cannot & should not leave the house for any reason, but if you have to, then you can. You are free to stay home, you are not free to leave home. So STAY HOME. But it’s important to go out sometimes.

2. Masks are not useful if you are sick, but maybe you should wear one, it can save you, but it is mandatory as well. You will definitely not get sick with a mask, but you may still die. When you do go out, which you shouldn’t, keep a social distance of 6 to 100 feet. You must be 6 feet behind the next person in a line, however, you can be right next to the person in the line right next to your line. The virus does not travel side to side.

3. Stores are closed, except those that are open. Essential employees must work, even in stores that should be closed, but have chosen to remain open. Do not lay off any employees. The federal government will pay your employees so you don’t have to lay anyone off. However, if you do or do not lay them off, you may qualify for a federal grant which you may or may not need to pay back. See Rule 1.

4. You should not go to a hospital unless you have to go there. Same applies to a doctor’s office, you should only go there in case of an emergency, provided you are not too sick. Do not leave the house if you are sick. See Rule 1.

5. This virus is deadly, but not too scary, except that it will lead to a global disaster. We can contain it unless we can’t, then we will no longer try to contain it. If you want to be tested, breathe on a celebrity or professional athlete, and then wait for them to get tested and announce the results on Twitter.

6. Gloves won't help, but they can still help. You don’t need to wear gloves unless you want to live.

7. There is no reason for shortages in the supermarkets, but there are many things missing when you go there in the evening, but not in the morning. Sometimes. Also, only at risk people should go in the morning. Lastly, do not hoard toilet paper. However, even if you aren’t a toilet paper hoarder, you may want to hoard it because other hoarders are hoarding it.

8. All borders are closed unless you need to come back into the country from a foreign country or unless you need to travel to a foreign country. After returning to your home country, quarantine for 14 days with your family. Your family can still go out, but they should choose to not go out once a day if possible.

9. The virus has no effect on children except those children it affects. Schools should be closed until the end of March, no, end of April, no, end of May, no, schools should only soft-close. Schools will offer free breakfast and lunch, except the schools which charge. Your children must be with you to get a free meal from the school, but remember to not take children with you when you go.

10. Animals are not affected, but there was a cat which tested positive in Belgium in February when no human had been tested, plus a few tigers here and there. Dogs are immune so the World Health Organization (or WHO) let the dogs out. When you choose to go for a walk, all animals must be on a leash. Pets may go outside, but you should not.

11. You will have many symptoms when you are sick, but you can also get sick without symptoms, have symptoms without being sick, or be contagious without having symptoms. Those who are not sick are spreading the virus more than those who are sick. If you are sick, quarantine yourself for 14 days. If you lose your sense of taste, you have probably had the virus before it was known to be in your country.

12. In order not to get sick, you have to eat well and exercise, but eat whatever you have at home because it's better not to go out. Remember, heart disease is still killing more people per day than the virus, but there are days it does not. Lastly, please support restaurants by eating out three times per week.

13. It's better to get some fresh air, but you get glared at when you do so, and most importantly, don't go to playgrounds. Don’t sit down outside, except you can do that if you are old or pregnant, but not for too long. Do not travel the opposite direction on a one way sidewalk. If you walk passed your house, go all the way around the block. See Rule 1.

14 You can walk around with a friend but not with your family if they don't live under the same roof. You may drive with your family, but not with your friends. Lastly, do not leave your county. If you travel across state lines, you may be stopped and questioned by the state you are leaving and the state you are entering. Truck drivers are exempted from rule 14, provided they have proper documentation, unless they are in the county of their residence, then no documentation is needed. See Rule 1.

15 The virus remains active on surfaces for 2 hours, no, 6, no, 14 days. It thrives in humidity, but not necessarily. It may die in warm weather, but it may also flourish in warm weather. We will definitely see a decrease in cases during the summer, but an increase in the winter, then a possible decrease next summer. This summer we will likely not see a slowdown in the number of deaths.

16 Stay quarantined until the virus disappears and then we can achieve collective immunity which, in order to occur, we must not be quarantined. The economy should be running fully by the end of May or Fall of 2041.

Got it?

Good.

Stay healthy everyone.

And God bless America. See Rule 1.

this is going to end up one of those discussions where we have to ignore Trump's actual words, pretend they have no effect, pretend actual people aren't responding to them, etc, because ... well, there's just so much chaffe in the air, who can really know what's happening?!

What's to worry? They were never heard from again. It was peace in our ... wait, not yet, tens of millions needed to die first:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0gU9op16rjQ

Nothing to see here, as the virus transmits so subtly:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AvUbqY1S-QQ

It would kinda be funny if people weren't being such utter asses.

The thing is, the actual rules in force in most places aren't that hard to grok. "Stay home unless you need to go out" sounds like a joke, right?
But it's actually a pretty obvious rule of thumb. Use your head and you should be able to figure it out.

The rules aren't the problem.

bc asks: "Got it?"

Yup, all of that appeals to my dark whimsy.

I would think a conservative would find the lack of one-size-fits-all, based on all of these made-up, contrived borders and jurisdictions in this crisis, proof of all things good and American.

Here's what else I find funny. I can drive 85 mph in Montana on their interstates. But I can cross a fake line in the dirt and get pulled over and fined for driving over 70 mph.

Or, I can have a heart attack on one side of a fake state line and not qualify for health insurance, or I can think a few minutes ahead, move my domicile a few feet across the fake line into another state and keel over from the same coronary and not immediately advance to go and have every internist on the staff collect $200 from me for my trouble.

It was reported that Franz Kafka would invite his friends over to his bedroom to listen to the first public reading of his fiction.

Kafka would sit in a chair that was positioned inside his open clothes closet, but so that his head and torso were concealed by the hanging garments. But they could see the chair and his legs and shoes.

And he would read the stories in a monotone that mocked his own stories' monstrous absurdity.

His friends would howl with side-splitting laughter.

If that much is not true, it shoulda been.

But the really hilarious part is that his fiction in retrospect, like no other, and I would include Orwell's, foreshadowed the tragic absurdities of the most murderous century on the books, World War I, World War II, the Holocaust, the Stalinist genocides.

It still cracks me up.

It's kinda like those early Brownshirt street rallies that Hitler would arrange from afar but not attend.

A few Jewish onlookers would gather early on, before they learned better, and one would nudge his neighbor and ask "These guys are kidding .. right?"


cleek wrote:

"this is going to end up one of those discussions where we have to ignore Trump's actual words, pretend they have no effect, pretend actual people aren't responding to them, etc, because ... well, there's just so much chaffe in the air, who can really know what's happening?!"

Flood the zone with shit! Love, Steve Bannon.

This morning, I was reading a stock market strategist lamenting that money managers are lost in the wilderness because the market's pricing mechanism has ceased functioning in any rational perceptible manner.

All the better than for Mnuchin and Kudlow to secretly and illegally funnel taxpayer dollars into the stock market, the better to own the means of production and support paper stock portfolios, while actual labor seems no longer required.

then not than

"Than" is a hoax.

However few or many, however risible or dangerous, however sincere or brainwashed the Covidiot demonstrators may be, they have managed to demonstrate at least one thing for sure: that certain of our fellow commenters can always be counted on to display some degree of sympathy, and provide some degree of justification, for any instance of Right-Wing Nut-Jobbery that comes down the pike.

--TP

poor Hank Smith. imagine living in a world where people learning as new information comes in is actually a plot to deprive of your freedom.

a philosophy that doesn't allow for adapting to new knowledge is a pretty fucking useless philosophy.

but here we are.

Regime cleavage...Mckinney looks at the protests and sees OWS; I look and I see OKC.

Nope, I'm comparing much larger, but lefty'ish, groups that actually did or do something with groups that are ineffectual, and in the former case, not equating either with impending communist revolution while laughing my ass off at the ridiculous notion that the clowns in MI and elsewhere are even in the same universe as Franco, or that our situation is even remotely similar to Spain in 1936.

OKC was pretty much a one-off. Timothy McVeigh is not 100% unique, but he is in a very, very small league. The only one who comes close--that I can recall off-hand--is Anders Breivik, the Norwegian mass murderer. Those kinds of atrocities--the result of psychopathy, fairly high IQ, intense focus and long term planning--are not in the skill set we see on display in this pissant rallies.

If you equate the RW pissants with the Antifa + the OWS crowd and just consider them to be the "muscle" behind the Right and Left Wing extremes, I'm not sure who has who outnumbered. I'm reasonably confident that if you added both sides together, you still have a very, very small minority.

As for "exploding heads", look at the overwrought title of this thread. Jesus.

this is going to end up one of those discussions where we have to ignore Trump's actual words, pretend they have no effect, pretend actual people aren't responding to them, etc, because ... well, there's just so much chaffe in the air, who can really know what's happening?!

DT's words, and Fox's, have an effect, but I'm not sure the effect goes as far as some here seem to think. As I've said before, we are self-quarantining in the heart of Trump country and everyone--EVERYONE--is social distancing, staying at home, etc.

We drove from our present location to Houston this weekend to check on the office and our home (lawyers are an essential business in Texas and are exempted from the lock down and we do need to get to the office in person to handle payroll and insurance issues), and the traffic is pretty much nonexistent. The country between Austin and Houston is Trump country. Folks are staying home.

So, it is unclear to me that DT's stupidity is having as widespread an impact as some here imply. His early stupidity no doubt played a role; however, Pelosi, De Blasio and Cuomo were pretty nonchalant in January and February, IIRC. That's when the shit hit the fan, so if there was a failure of leadership, it isn't wholly one-sided.

If you go to a store and see people not distancing with no gloves and no masks, they are most likely non-English speaking people from Mexico or Central America. If you look at the high case counts in Houston, these same neighborhoods are among those at the top. People who come from a culture that instinctively either ignore or disbelieve everyone in authority don't suddenly see the light when they cross the Rio Grande. This too is problematic. You get the same outcome, but for completely different and, in this case, perfectly rational reasons.

that certain of our fellow commenters can always be counted on to display some degree of sympathy, and provide some degree of justification, for any instance of Right-Wing Nut-Jobbery that comes down the pike.

Yep, I'm seeing a lot of that here.

If you go to a store and see people not distancing with no gloves and no masks, they are most likely non-English speaking people from Mexico or Central America.

not here in suburban NC.

i went grocery shopping yesterday. about half of everybody was wearing a mask, all demographics - white, black, hispanic, asian, old, young, yoga-pants moms and redneck guys. no children were wearing masks, and none of the workers either.

a philosophy that doesn't allow for adapting to new knowledge . . .

. . that certain of our fellow commenters can always be counted on to display some degree of sympathy . . .

If that was aimed at what I posted, I simply respond that a philosophy that doesn't allow for humor and satire . . .

And no, I do not sympathize with the protesters coming with weapons, blocking access to hospitals, etc. My feelings are quite the opposite.

I can have those feelings and at the same time be frustrated myself at inconsistent messaging (not all, IMHO, in response to increasing knowledge over time), the lack of clear, empirical evidence that sheltering long-term will outweigh the detriment, Trump bloviating and the media bloviators boloviating back, etc.

Masks are not useful if you are sick, but maybe you should wear one, it can save you, but it is mandatory as well.

If you’re sick, it will cut the amount of aerosol you spray out.

Everyone here in NJ is wearing masks. They won't let you into the store without one. Many, including myself and all the workers, are wearing gloves, too. They strictly control how many people are in the store at one time, only letting a number of people in as the same number of people leave. The aisles are all one-way, with big arrows on the floor, to minimize people passing each other while shopping.

On another note: One difference I see between OWS and Antifa on one hand and the Covidiots on the other is that the first two are far more youth oriented. If you were going to characterize them negatively, you might say there are a lot of dumb kids involved, doing stuff dumb kids tend to do. The Covidiots are mostly middle aged, though not necessarily "grown up" in their thinking.

Except the people who stay home with them. And the people who can't stay home, that they encounter.

Watch for COVID spikes in MI, OH, and elsewhere over the next two weeks. KY is already seeing it.

Spike is a relative concept and can and likely does have a variety of causes. Many people don't follow rules, not because of some political agenda, but because they are lazy, stupid, apathetic or what have you.

That said, ISTM that the single largest drivers of the Covid spread are dense population centers and mass transit. People who have no choice but to ride an elevator to come and go to and from home or to get on a train or a bus are the most exposed. The more spread out people are, the less disease. We are seeing that in Houston--apartment-heavy districts have the highest rates of infection, single family areas the lowest.

I'm pretty sure I'm right about this, and I'm pretty sure this 'crowding' phenomena is going to have to be factored in to long term climate change planning. If there is a plus side, one thing we are learning from this crisis is that many of us do not have to leave an urban foot print or get in their car everyday to live and work. On average, I'm in my car 3 times every two weeks for about an hour each time. Previously, I put 30,000 miles a year, 2,500 a month, every year, every month. Now, less than 300 a month.

I'm thinking my experience isn't unique and I'm wondering what tweaks we can make as a country to promote more--a lot more--telecommuting.

some of our supermarkets have those arrows on the floor. that helps. they all have workers wiping down carts for people to use.

(state-run) liquor stores only allow one person in at a time - line up outside, place your order with the guy when he let the person in front of you in, then he'll fetch your order and bring it up to the counter. then he lets you in so you can pay. restaurants are all take-out only. smart.

i don't know why people aren't wearing masks. and i don't see how anything Trump says or the protests he's encouraging are going to help make adoption more widespread.

and say what you will about Cuomo's slow start, but he's infinitely better now than Trump and the idiots who took Trump's lead.

and, AFAIK, Cuomo isn't literally hijacking trucks full of supplies from places that need it.

i went grocery shopping yesterday. about half of everybody was wearing a mask, all demographics - white, black, hispanic, asian, old, young, yoga-pants moms and redneck guys. no children were wearing masks, and none of the workers either.

I get to the store once a week or so. I rarely see kids and the vast majority of people I see use both masks and gloves. Interesting that your neck of the woods is different. People are very interesting.

The Covidiots are mostly middle aged, though not necessarily "grown up" in their thinking.

If one is gifted at birth with minimal intelligence, age isn't going to make things better. Try to imagine the lack of self- and situational awareness that goes into dressing up like that and then going out in public wanting to be seen.

It's like a Skinhead white supremacist with a deaths head tat on his forehead: if "you"--"you" being the white supremacist--want to make the case that "you" are the superior race, wouldn't "you" want to, you know, pick a better example?

and say what you will about Cuomo's slow start, but he's infinitely better now than Trump and the idiots who took Trump's lead.

I agree 100%. I haven't gotten into the weeds on the supplies allocation controversy, and I probably won't. DT is so many things that are wrong, it is exhausting and, at some point, redundant and pointless to continue making that inventory. That said, his entirely transactional approach to pretty much everything leaves me open to believing the worst in that regard.

But, we are talking about two different things. Perhaps someday there will be an objective and valid analysis of how much of the current crisis is attributable to an early, bipartisan slow start and how much was due downstream to the administration's acts and omissions. In the meantime, as I wrote on a thread a week or so back, I saw one DT press evening briefing and was nauseated. How effectual or ineffectual he actually is will be hard to measure in the here and now. It can only be done in hindsight, when and if the dust ever settles and the actual numbers can be reliably aggregated.

McKinneyTexas, that is.

Oil prices are negative. I don't mean down. I mean they'll pay you to take oil. (I don't know if that actually would happen or if it's some weird market-pricing anomaly that doesn't depict reality.)

Ya gotta admit, Trump definitely knows how to pick 'em.
https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/brett-giroir-trumps-testing-czar-was-forced-out-of-a-job-developing-vaccine-projects-now-hes-on-the-hot-seat/2020/04/19/b061b968-7e89-11ea-8de7-9fdff6d5d83e_story.html

Trump is thoroughly exhausting, you got that right.

i'd be much happier with a Pres Pence, who at least seems like he's within a std-devs or so of just ... normality.

maybe more of this will get people to take it seriously.

McKinney's comment only reinforces my impression that we are well into regime cleavage.

Too many of my GOP relatives and acquaintances believe and spread the crap that motivates these threeper loons to cosplay revolution. They (the non-Red Dawn LARPers) think that the underlying paranoia and disinformation accurately describes the world we live in. They consume bad information and they don't have the critical perspective or the media literacy skills to see why or where they are wrong. And their confirmation biases are built on the non-falsifiable bedrock of religious conviction. They are closer in their sympathies to the threepers than they are to me anymore.

Perhaps someday there will be an objective and valid analysis of how much of the current crisis is attributable to an early, bipartisan slow start and how much was due downstream to the administration's acts and omissions.

In that analysis (I actually hope it's a criminal investigation), I'm thinking that the Trump administration's disdain for science and institutional preparation that had existed for dealing with a pandemic, advice his administration received from his predecessor, etc., might be quite relevant. These are all things that would never have happened under that she-devil Hillary Clinton.

Too many of my GOP relatives and acquaintances believe and spread the crap that motivates these threeper loons to cosplay revolution. They (the non-Red Dawn LARPers) think that the underlying paranoia and disinformation accurately describes the world we live in.

Threeper? Non Red Dawn LARPer?

What the hey? What are you talking about?

Oil prices are negative. I don't mean down. I mean they'll pay you to take oil. (I don't know if that actually would happen or if it's some weird market-pricing anomaly that doesn't depict reality.)

Yeah, less there than meets the eye, I think. It's a bunch of expiring contracts. June contracts are at $22, per my money manager. So, not really giving it away. I think. I hope.

These are all things that would never have happened under that she-devil Hillary Clinton.

It's hard to imagine how much differently this would have been handled under Clinton. I'm not sure I can accurately remember what a competent administration looks like.

The other side of it is that the morons running around with their guns would be even more paranoid and irrational if guidelines were coming from a Clinton administration, and Trump would be cheering them on from his nightly Fox News talk show and on Twitter with a thousand times the vigor his is now.

WTF?

Militia types, McKinney. Three-percenters. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Three_Percenters

Also the Atomwaffen and TWP and Identity Evropa (or whatever they are calling themselves these days) neo-nazis and ghost skins. They have run thick in many of the places I have lived - WI, CO, Orange County.

Anyone who live action role-plays (LARP) their white supremacist revolutionary fantasy with actual firearms.

You kids with your funny slang.

My patois is on fleek.

https://www.balloon-juice.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/monday-afternoon-update.jpg

In the parlance of our times.

Regardless of what would happen if I were to try to buy oil today (assuming I were in a position to do that sort of thing), it's an historic low. I have to think it's still kind of a big deal.

So, not really giving it away. I think. I hope.

LOL. Looks like some investors are eager to pay the government for the privilege of loaning it their money.

De-lurking to make a couple of observations w/r/t negative oil prices ... a few things can cause that to happen (a) it's cheaper than shutting down the well and doing long term damage (b) there is contracted pipeline space that has a penalty (c) you can lose lease rights for not continuously pumping.

I'm not saying that's what's happening here, but in theory you can come up with a plausible scenario that would lead to paying someone to take your oil off your hands, especially in the current conditions where most of the available storage is already full.

it's an historic low. I have to think it's still kind of a big deal.

wasn't too long ago that Trump was taking credit for personally fixing* the oil market.

* = raising prices for American consumers

"Drill, baby, drill!" is so 2008.

In my immediate area, the average risk of being infected appears to be relatively low. Not necessarily so to the south in Dallas County. The risk is a bit hard to judge since they're only giving out the age, sex, and city/zip code of those infected.

In any case, I occasionally go to the local convenience store for a non-essential fountain drink. I can get in and out of the store without getting near anyone, touching anything I don't take with me or leaving behind anything I took in the store with me.

If you're an oil storage facility, with a contract to take more oil, and that contract comes with penalty clauses, you might well be willing to pay someone to clear some capacity for you. No idea if oil contracts feature such a thing. But it would get you to a negative real price.

We joined OPEC, to try and save Harold Hamm's bacon after trying to break the thing for 50 years.

Just like we are doing the largest QE, the what?, forth in a row, after listening to the Kudlows of the world insult, disparage, and spit on all of the previous QEs as market distorting new fangled lefty bushwah all those Obama years.

WE are witnessing as well the largest dispensation of socialist, subsidizing, gummint owning the means of production scheme in the history of history.

And yet we can't seem to elect a Democratic government, who could do this stuff in their sleep and also not lecture us endlessly about their holier than thou principles that doing nothing and letting the market settle everyone's hash and starve a third of the population without "interference" would be somehow more "American".

america = bullshit.

I have to think it's still kind of a big deal.

It isn't nothing, that's for sure. PDM and WJ make sense. Even if June contracts are at $22, that's a loser for most oil companies, with bankruptcies and widespread havoc in oil-sensitive economies. Live by the petrodollar, die by the petrodollar. We had our first oil bust in 1980 and several since then. As alternate fuels become more and more affordable and preferable, things will get worse/better depending on optics. My gut is that this is a temporary reverse spike aided and abetted by the Saudis and the Russkies. We'll get past it, but there will be a lot of pain in the process.

I havent read all of the comments but: negative wti futures are occurring today because they expire tomorrow and there are some holders that literally cant take delivery. There are two kind of people who cant,but mostly futures speculators that dont have the capability to receive or store oil, at all.

After the May futures expire tomorrow the price you see everyday will be the June futures, they were at $21 today.

These speculators usually can dump any amount because someone wants free oil, but storage is getting very expensive so in a very few cases they were paying some of the storage to get someone to take it.

There were very few contracts traded today so the price wasnt universal for oil.

This may very well happen for a few months until Europe and the US open up. But then the price is likely to go up pretty quickly as pumps are being shut down in Texas pretty much as fast as they can shut them down,and they take little time to bring back on line.

They take "a" little time to start up. Most wont startup before $45 just because they need $35 to break even at best.

So if you mix the excess milk dairy farmers are pouring down the drain with the excess oil the drillers don't have a place to store, can you both drink it and fuel the car with the combination?

Weren't we just talking about the sure threat of inflation around here not two weeks ago?

Supply-side economics has certainly increased supply while making commodity prices disappear altogether.


"But then the price is likely to go up pretty quickly as pumps are being shut down in Texas pretty much as fast as they can shut them down,and they take little time to bring back on line."

So, OPEC Junior.

We taught opec how to do it, they created opec to copy the texas railroad commission.

Some practical advice.

https://www.balloon-juice.com/2020/04/20/covid-19-and-me/

Tamara apparently lives in Denver. Too close.

See ya tomorrow.

More:

https://www.lawyersgunsmoneyblog.com/2020/04/notes-on-prevalence

If the White House press conferences were given over to solely advising us on this stuff, lives would be saved, particularly with those high ratings.

Instead, we get madness.

McT: Perhaps someday there will be an objective and valid analysis of how much of the current crisis is attributable to an early, bipartisan slow start and how much was due downstream to the administration's acts and omissions

It is really DEPLORABLE how Pelosi, Shumer and Biden slow-walked the official emergency declarations. Awful.

Why, it's as if they weren't in charge of the federal bureaucracy or something, sheesh!

Spike is a relative concept and can and likely does have a variety of causes.

No doubt.

Most likely, some of the people running around protesting the lockdowns are gonna get sick. And some of them are going to pass it along to somebody else, whether they get sick or not.

So they seem like selfish idiots, to me.

I'll also say that I'm fine with people having a range of points of view, but I insist on a few bright lines. Nazis and other forms of fascist fall outside of those bright lines.

Proud Boys are coked up fascist punks who like to beat people up for fun. People carrying signs calling Jews "the real plague" are racist scum.

And I don't really care how many boyos are showing up with AR-15's and tactical vests to "protest" stay at home orders. If it's more than zero, it's too many.

Threatening violence in order to intimidate or coerce a civilian population, which is to say people, or intimidate or coerce a government, is terrorism. Not in my opinion, not in the fevered imagination of hysterical lefties, but by definition, per the US Code.

Black letter law.

We tolerate this stuff because these guys are such a bunch of clowns that nobody is really afraid of them. But whether they are effective terrorists or not hardly seems on point, to me.

The virus is making a lot of people sick. People I know, probably people you know. Close friends of mine and my wife's, at the moment.

I have no patience with people who want to run around and act like idiots because they want to buy a can of paint or some shrubs.

None.

And I have less than no patience with people who take any opportunity to wave their guns around like they're some kind of brave patriot. Or cause traffic jams in front of hospitals during a national health emergency.

They're idiotic children, and they're gonna make people profoundly ill, and kill some of them.

I'd have a great deal more respect for the "conservative movement" if so many of its spokespeople and representatives weren't flaming assholes. And I'm not just talking about the folks in MI and OH and wherever else.

I'm hard pressed to think of a single notable conservative who isn't either an utter bonehead, or simply reprehensible as a human being. I can't really come up with any. Maybe some of the more polite folks at TAC, but then again, their spiritual grandpa is Buchanan, who is basically a Proud Boy without the coke habit.

OWS was a flash in the pan. Antifa, with rare exceptions, are kids who run around at protests organized by other people and make a nuisance of themselves. In a handful of places, notably Portland OR, they are much more violent, but then again so are their counter-parties. In Charlottesville, antifa saved some lives, and I can introduce you to people who can attest to that from first-hand experience.

In any case, unless you're a fascist engaging in public display of your more violent tendencies, you're unlikely to ever meet a member of Antifa, at least as such.

There is nothing on "the left", such as it is, that is comparable to the literally fascist cohort that is ever-present at events like MI and OH, and which is encouraged and abetted by, not fringe conservatives, but institutional conservatism, going straight up to the POTUS and his WH staff.

So, Spain in 1936 may not be a particularly apt analogy, but the OP has a point to make. It should be attended to.

Personally, I have to say that current-day conservatism, in this country, seems more like a pathology than anything else. Sorry to say it, but it is what it is.

Get the freaking Nazis and Randian greedheads out of your community, commit yourselves to the well-being of the people of this nation, and perhaps there is a conversation to be had.

Keep pretending the violent racist weirdos that, somehow, keep popping up are just an "aberration" and I'm not sure what there is to talk about.

Democrats were asking for action already in early February:

https://twitter.com/ChrisMurphyCT/status/1225073987639705600

He's on the Appropriations Committee and the Foreign Relations Committee.

And a lovely little graph in this one about tweets by Members of Congress concerning COVID:

https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2020/04/02/tweets-by-members-of-congress-tell-the-story-of-an-escalating-covid-19-crisis/

In case you want to compare the slowness of the responses.

Yes, it's only Twitter, but it definitely shows what's occupying their attention.

wrs

these 'protests' are having an effect.

via LGM:

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp announced on Monday that gyms, hair salons, nail salons, barbershops, and bowling alleys are among the businesses that will be allowed to reopen in the state on Friday.

yes. let's go to the gym! squeeze in a pilates class before bowling!

apparently, the GOP wants to die.

who am i to blow against the wind?

If you live in GA, stay the hell out of my state.

This is no anti-red-state or anti-southern bigotry, my father was born and raised in GA, I have family there, some of my best memories growing up are of time I spent there.

But the governor of GA is apparently a bonehead, see also "I didn't know you could be asymptomatic and still carry the virus".

So if you're from GA please stay the hell out of my state. Our hands are full dealing with the virus already, we don't need your crazy BS making things worse.

A lot of people will make a personal assessment of what their risks are and will continue to self-quarantine regardless of what businesses are open.

"Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee (R) and Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) announced Monday afternoon that they are taking the initial steps of allowing 'non-essential' businesses to reopen.

The 'vast majority' of businesses in Tennessee will be allowed to restart their engines on May 1. 'Social distancing must continue, but our economic shutdown cannot,' Lee said in a statement. 'While I am not extending the 'Safer at Home' order past the end of April, we are working directly with our major metropolitan areas to ensure they are in a position to reopen as soon and safely as possible. Social distancing works, and as we open up our economy, it will be more important than ever that we keep social distancing as lives and livelihoods depend on it.'"
Tennessee Will Allow 'Vast Majority' of Businesses To Reopen on May 1: And Georgia will reopen select businesses beginning April 24.

Oh ffs
If you go to a store and see people not distancing with no gloves and no masks, they are most likely non-English speaking people from Mexico or Central America. If you look at the high case counts in Houston, these same neighborhoods are among those at the top.

McT, I'm sure you are going out all the time and making careful scientific observations. I mean, what if they can't afford masks and gloves? Pack them in a ghetto and then say they are not like us because they get sick.

People who come from a culture that instinctively either ignore or disbelieve everyone in authority don't suddenly see the light when they cross the Rio Grande. This too is problematic.

Right, if they are brown and like this, that's a problem. If they are white, well, not so much...

Yep, I'm seeing a lot of that here.
Insert a comment about a mirror here

That said, ISTM that the single largest drivers of the Covid spread are dense population centers and mass transit. People who have no choice but to ride an elevator to come and go to and from home or to get on a train or a bus are the most exposed.

Self-parody much?

As someone pointed out, why do the rich take this more seriously than they do people getting cancer and dying indigent? Because the help couldn't give you cancer...

A problem is that the seasonal flu numbers are not actual counts, but inflated estimates.

"Preliminary results from antibody tests in Los Angeles County indicate that the true number of COVID-19 infections is much higher than the number of confirmed cases there, which implies that the fatality rate is much lower than the official tallies suggest. "The mortality rate now has dropped a lot," Barbara Ferrer, director of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, said at a press briefing today. In contrast with the current crude case fatality rate of about 4.5 percent, she said, the study suggests that 0.1 percent to 0.2 percent of people infected by the virus will die, which would make COVID-19 only somewhat more deadly than the seasonal flu."
L.A. County Antibody Tests Suggest the Fatality Rate for COVID-19 Is Much Lower Than People Feared: The tests indicate that the number of infections in the county is around 40 times as high as the number of confirmed cases.

It goes both ways, though. If it's spreading more rapidly and stealthily, more people are going to infected over a given time frame. So the same number of people might end up dying, despite a bigger denominator.

And, given the nature of CoVID, the health system will continue to be wrecked.

Freedom!!

Yup, wrs @06.21.

People who come from a culture that instinctively either ignore or disbelieve everyone in authority don't suddenly see the light when they cross the Rio Grande. This too is problematic.

Right, if they are brown and like this, that's a problem. If they are white, well, not so much...

Oh, lj, you mean libertarian culture! Definitely a whole different deal.

Barbara Ferrer, director of the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health, said at a press briefing today. In contrast with the current crude case fatality rate of about 4.5 percent, she said, the study suggests that 0.1 percent to 0.2 percent of people infected by the virus will die, which would make COVID-19 only somewhat more deadly than the seasonal flu."
I don't think these numbers pass the smell test. A mortality rate of 0.1% implies that everyone in NY city (death toll is ~10k) has been infected. If the mortality rate is 0.2% then about half of NY city has been infected. There was a similar study from Stanford with similar numbers however it seems like their rate of positive tests can be explained soley by the false positive rate associated with the test.

All that means Charles is that neither you nor I are dead yet.

McKinney wrote: "look at the overwrought title of this thread. Jesus."

No, look at this and feel your underwroughtness:

https://digbysblog.net/2020/04/as-ye-sow-so-shall-ye-reap/

https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/18/nyregion/coronavirus-jjbubbles-joe-joyce.html

I'd say the title of this post is on the money in its evocation of the anti government conservative fake Christian death cult that is looking for death .......... theirs, yours, and mine, and they are reaching pay dirt. So much winning.

I sense in their black hearts that they are becoming disappointed at the recent stats pointing to the fact that Covid-19's per capita death toll is not going to reach the dire levels predicted, even though the ease of transmission and the asymptomatic carriers goofing on us are outrageously unpredicable and it seems uncountable by republicans, who like the Chinese government early in the going are resisting the counting ..... and the testing required.

I am overwrought. It is a matter of public record.

But you are a consistent minimizer of serious crap that always, always, turns out to be much worse than your pooh poohing of how bad it gets.

And somehow you always determine that both sides do it, and if it wasn't for government fucking up, nobody would do it.

We could review if you like.

Both sides don't influence people to goddamned die of this killer virus.

Only one side does.

Trump is not stupid. He's doing his best, McKinney to kill you and he's pretty smart about it, I'd say, despite the best intentions of the decent folks remaining in the deep state attempting to save your life.

Both sides is bullshit.

Trump is smarter than both of us. He has to be, as a killer, to keep one step ahead of us like he does.

Feel free to rip me.

I am immune to that at least.

One interesting item regarding the death toll in Italy that relates to your density and minority observations. It turns out that Italians, like many ethnic minorities in this country practice very close multi-generation family values and their first human impulse as the virus swept trouble the population was to gather together as family asymptomatically and pass the virus on to their loved ones, killing many of the elder generation.

I would continue regarding your observations about who is spreading this thing by relating how difficult is for me the white guy to finally get my hands on masks and gloves and disinfectant, despite my ability to pay, and the horrendous practices at grocery stores, mostly serving white folks, until very late in the going, related to me by close friends who work in the industry who work on the front line.

But I need a shower to rinse the both sides cooties off my person.

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