Closing Thought–21May20

One of the most vocal governors about re-staring the state economy has been the governor of Texas…..and since the state has opened up is there anything to report?

Yes there is!

New cases of Covid-19 in the state is showing a steady increase….

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott issued an executive order March 31 that told Texans to stay home in April except for essential activity. On May 1, that order expired and Abbott announced his formal reopening plan, intended to be completed in phases. On Monday, gyms and fitness centers were the latest to be allowed to reopen, following earlier allowances for restaurants, retailers and salons.

On May 1, Abbott allowed restaurants, retail outlets, malls and movie theaters to reopen with restrictions. Malls, retailers and restaurant owners were told to keep capacity limited to 25%. But for rural counties with five or less confirmed cases of the new coronavirus, businesses were allowed to serve up to 50% of their regular capacity. Public museums and libraries were also allowed to reopen with permission from their local government, but were ordered to keep capacity to 25% and close down interactive exhibits.

https://www.rawstory.com/2020/05/texas-sees-steady-increase-in-new-coronavirus-cases-after-reopening/

Watch the rambling, Babbling president go on and on…..

President Donald Trump held a small official White House ceremony Tuesday to announce he’s handing America’s farmers and ranchers even more cash – this time in the form of a $19 billion bailout he says is because of the pandemic, not mentioning his disastrous trade war with China.

https://www.rawstory.com/2020/05/watch-trump-calls-coronavirus-victims-people-who-have-been-left-behind-who-died-for-some-reason/

Nothing about this man presents confidence and expertise in handling this pandemic….

If anything…he is killing us softly with his words……

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

That Mail-In Vote

There has been lots of lip service among our elected officials about the proposal to allow mail-in voting…..especially from the bullshitter-in-charge…..Donald the Orange…..

As always the GOP is worried about voter fraud…..they are always worried about voter fraud whenever there is a proposal for the expansion of voting to make it more available to more people…..so their opposition is absolutely nothing new.

Donald the Orange has issued threats for these mail-in votes….

President Trump threatened to withdraw federal funds Wedneday after apparently misinterpreting a move from Michigan Secretary of State Jocelyn Benson. The president, who has repeatedly criticized Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, claimed the state had sent absentee ballots to 7.7 million voters. “This was done illegally and without authorization by a rogue Secretary of State,” he tweeted. “I will ask to hold up funding to Michigan if they want to go down this Voter Fraud path!” Benson, however, had sent applications for mail-in ballots, not the ballots themselves. “I also have a name, it’s Jocelyn Benson,” she tweeted. “And we sent applications, not ballots. Just like my GOP colleagues in Iowa, Georgia, Nebraska, and West Virginia.”

In another tweet, Trump said the military had been sent to deal with flooding in Michigan, but Whitmer “must now ‘set you free’ to help.” Trump is strongly opposed to expanding mail-in voting amid the pandemic, but it’s not clear who he believes needed to authorize Michigan’s decision; Republicans have long “resisted efforts to inject federal oversight” into state elections, Politico notes. In another tweet Wednesday, the president threatened to cut off funding to Nevada for sending out “illegal vote by mail ballots, creating a great Voter Fraud scenario.” Rep. Dina Titus slammed Trump for “threatening to harm Nevadans” and said that the decision to make June 9 congressional primaries all-mail was made by Nevada’s Republican secretary of state, the Nevada Independent reports.

Is there any evidence that there would be an increase in voter fraud if there is mail-in voting?

In short: voting by mail is more convenient for some voters but more difficult for others, and these conflicting factors appear to cancel each other out, dampening any partisan advantage. Moreover, the vast majority of nonvoters don’t participate not because it’s too inconvenient to vote, but because voting isn’t a habit for them. Maybe they don’t care about politics, maybe they don’t think their vote matters, maybe they don’t like any of the candidates, or maybe it’s some combination of all of the above. But the bottom line is that these voters’ decision to vote depends more on whether somebody around them can motivate them to vote, not whether they are able to vote by mail or in person.

There are three main ways states vote by mail. First, there are “universal” vote-by-mail states, which is when all registered voters automatically receive a ballot, but this is fairly rare. Just five states currently conduct all-mail elections by default: Colorado, Hawaii, Oregon, Utah and Washington (although a handful of states allow certain elections to be conducted by mail or some of their counties to vote by mail). Next, there are “no-excuse” vote-by-mail states, which is the most common method of voting by mail in the U.S. — 29 states currently use it in federal elections. Under this system, any registered voter can vote by mail, but must first request a ballot. And finally, there are 16 states that are “excuse-only” vote by mail, which means voters must provide a reason as to why they can’t show up at the polls in order to get their ballot. Although some states might expand the types of excuses accepted in 2020 — the coronavirus is already a valid excuse for general election voters in New Hampshire, and in Texas there’s a lawsuit over whether the coronavirus should be considered a valid excuse for the state’s July primary runoff elections.

https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/there-is-no-evidence-that-voting-by-mail-gives-one-party-an-advantage/amp/

Just the GOP trying hard to limit the people that can vote….same as it ever was…..

Just a side thought….most voter fraud convictions have been from the GOP…..something to think about.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Covid-19: Miracle Of Miracles

The news came out earlier this week that there were some good results in the trials for a vaccine to fight the Covid-19…..and the markets went batcrap crazy and rose close to 1000 points……and the peasants danced.

Biblical results…..

An experimental vaccine may help protect against a coronavirus infection, preliminary results from people and mice suggest.

One or two doses of an mRNA vaccine prod people’s bodies to make as many or more antibodies against the coronavirus as are made by people who have recovered from COVID-19, researchers from Moderna, Inc., announced May 18.

Moderna, based in Cambridge, Mass., and the U.S. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases in Bethesda, Md., worked together to develop the vaccine, known as mRNA-1273 (SN: 2/21/20).

Their approach uses messenger RNA, or mRNA, a genetic molecule that cellular machinery reads in order to build proteins. In this case, the mRNA contains instructions for building the coronavirus’ spike protein, which helps the virus enter human cells. The vaccine induces human cells to make the spike protein. The immune system then makes antibodies to latch onto the spike proteins. Should a vaccinated person encounter the virus later, those vaccine-stimulated antibodies may prevent the virus from infecting healthy cells.

Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine stimulates an immune response in people

The bliss and excitement lasted about 36 hours and then there was silence and Donald the Orange is taking a pill…..but why did the dialogue collapse?

Monday’s announcement by the Boston-based biotech company Moderna that it had positive results from the first COVID-19 vaccine test conducted on humans was greeted with a wave of media hysteria and adulation.

The evening news led with the “revolutionary” treatment, which was called a “breakthrough.” NBC News declared the finding was “generating a wave of optimism.” Everywhere, the line was the same, from Fox News to CNN to PBS.

A miracle cure had supposedly been found and Wall Street was beside itself. The markets surged on the news, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average rising more than 900 points. Moderna shares were up by more than $20.

But within just 36 hours, this campaign began to collapse under its own weight.

It turned out that no one had paid attention to the fact that the information provided by Moderna was highly limited, and that the manufacturer had withheld or did not have data on the outcomes for most participants in the tiny study.

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/05/20/pers-m20.html

Why was it important for this limited success result to be turned over to the economy?

Was it to provide cover for the wealthy playing the markets?

News the benefited NO one but the markets and the political aspirations of Donald the Orange….

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

 

The Next Stim Package

It appears the economics will be the savior of the nation during this pandemic.

We have already had 4 or 5 stim packages to lift the morale and hopes of the American people while steadily increasing the profits of corporations.

And now I hear the Dems and others are talking about another round of stim to help cope with this virus….but what should be included in the final bill?

How about such deals as pay check guarantee or mortgage/rent assistance or maybe some economic stabilizers……

For the next stimulus package, some lawmakers want to go bigger. Much bigger.

While it could be weeks before members of Congress land on the next bipartisan bill to combat the economic fallout of the coronavirus, many have no shortage of ideas about what that could look like. House Democrats, after all, have already passed their $3 trillion opening bid, with a focus on getting more than $900 billion to states and cities.

Make no mistake, focusing on an influx of funding to local governments is hugely important and could do a lot to stave off the long-term economic effects of the crisis. But other ideas that have been proposed — like a federal paycheck guarantee or rent cancellation — would also be more ambitious ways to address the problem than what lawmakers have done so far.

A focus on implementing such expansive stimulus could well be warranted given the scale of the problem: Economists say that Congress’s economic support needs to match the devastating nature of the issue at hand. As of mid-May, the country’s unemployment rate is still growing, with more than 36 million people applying for unemployment insurance within the first eight weeks of the crisis.

https://www.vox.com/2020/5/18/21246421/congress-stimulus-ideas

But then I ask…who will these “guarantees” actually benefit…the average American or the people that control their lives?

Plus I do NOT see Trump approving of this stim package….this would not benefit many of his buddies….or enrich himself.

Any thoughts?

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Return Of The “Cold War”

Return of the “Cold War”?

Back during the first Cold War the US and Russia tried to out spend one another in an attempt to one up the other in weapons….and they used proxies all over the world to confront each other militarily……Africa mostly……and now it appears that Donald the Orange has a new Cold War brewing….this time with China……

America is answering China’s missile supremacy by planning to deploy—you guessed it—a lot more missiles. Reuters reports that the Pentagon wants to arm Marines with Tomahawk cruise missiles and hasten a rare order of long-range anti-ship missiles, all to counter China’s lead in land-based ballistic and cruise missiles. Another goal is to even out China’s advantage in the so-called “range war”—missiles that can fly farther than America’s or those of its Asian allies. China’s military, the People’s Liberation Army, stocked up because it wasn’t party to a Cold War treaty that restrained the US and Russia. But President Trump left that treaty last year. “The Americans are coming back strongly,” says an ex-defense official in Australia.

“By 2024 or 2025 there is a serious risk for the PLA that their military developments will be obsolete,” he adds. But China responded to Reuters with a stern message, saying Washington is stuck on “its Cold War mentality” and should “stop moving chess pieces around” the Asia-Pacific. For Washington, the issue is China’s increasing military pressure on Taiwan and around the South China Sea. The Sunday Times reports that Beijing, which claims nearly the whole area, has stood up to Malaysian oil drillers and reportedly “expelled” a US warship (which Washington denied). Jack Keane, an unofficial Trump adviser, says China wants to “hammer home their message that the US no longer has the status it used to have in that part of the world.”

It is getting serious…..the Navy has been ordered to respond……

The US Navy is once again sending ships into the South China Sea deliberately to confront China, and commander Admiral John Aquilino says that the US insists “the Chinese Communist Party must end its pattern of bullying.

China has substantial maritime claims in the South China Sea, and to the extent they conflict with those of other nations, the US has always backed the other nations’ claims. The US regularly sends ships into the South China Sea, near China-claimed islands, to prove that they can do so.

Admiral Aquilino says the US ships are championing “freedom of the seas and the rule of law.” These are minor ships and probably won’t register as a threat to China. The US is sending the tiny littoral combat ship, the USS Montgomery, and a dry cargo ship.

The ships are heading to the area near a Malaysian drillship’s area of operation, with officials seeing the deployment as a US attempt to back the Malaysians over the Chinese.

(antiwar.com)

Is this the start of something new?  Or has it been brewing for a long time only to appear now that Trump needs a diversion from his disastrous pandemic response?

Thoughts?

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”