Closing Thought–29May20

I do not post much about the UK society for I figure those who live there would be more and better informed than me…..but I read a story that I would like to get Brit feedback……

I involves the use of illegal drugs….namely Cocaine…..

Cocaine usage in Britain has soared by almost 300 per cent in less than a decade with Britons taking 117 tonnes of the drug last year, a senior investigator has told The Times.

Lawrence Gibbons, head of drugs threat at the National Crime Agency, said that the estimated amount trafficked had risen from 30 tonnes in 2011.

“The UK is the biggest user of powder cocaine in Europe,” he said. “A lot of the consignments we see coming into Europe — through Spain, Belgium or the Netherlands mainly — a significant proportion is destined for the UK.

(The Times)

Can someone break this down for me and my readers?

Thanx in advance for your help.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Amy’s Racist Tendencies

Biden is looking for that perfect candidate to be his VP….and at one time I thought Amy Klobuchar would be that perfect candidate….then the George Floyd debacle happened in Minnesota.

Why would that make a difference?

It seems that Amy had a helluva time attracting people of color to her campaign….and now she has crapped in her chili….

For you see the cop that killed Floyd was the same cop that Amy refused to prosecute in an earlier case of police misconduct.

Klobuchar has not commented publicly on her prospects as a vice presidential candidate. But complicating her appeal to the party’s left flank was the criticism she faced in the closing days of her presidential campaign from Black Lives Matter protesters and others angered by the disputed murder conviction of black teenager Myon Burrell during her days as a prosecutor.

An Associated Press investigation raised questions about the conviction of Burrell in the 2002 killing of an 11-year-old girl. The controversy sparked a protest that shut down the final Minnesota rally of her presidential campaign.

The Floyd case has put the national spotlight back on Klobuchar’s days as a prosecutor, particularly as it became clear Derek Chauvin, the officer involved in Floyd’s death, was involved in the death of another citizen while Klobuchar was prosecutor. Chauvin was one of six officers who fired on and killed Wayne Reyes in 2006 after Reyes reportedly aimed a shotgun at police after stabbing his friend and girlfriend. While the death happened during Klobuchar’s tenure at the helm of the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office, the case did not go to a grand jury until after she left the office and became a senator.

https://www.startribune.com/george-floyd-s-death-returns-spotlight-to-sen-amy-klobuchar-prosecutor-past/570851712/

Choosing her at this time will lose black votes and as it is right now he cannot afford to lose any votes……

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

 

All Those Powers He Does Not Possess

Donald the Orange has a running battle against ….well everybody…..and most of his claims and lies are on his Twitter account. In case you missed the breakdown…..https://lobotero.com/2020/05/28/trump-twitter-saga-continues/

His Executive Order could strip Twitter and social media their legal protections…..

“This will be a Big Day for Social Media and FAIRNESS!” President Trump tweeted Thursday morning. The reason? Late in the afternoon, he signed an executive order that could deal a big blow to Twitter, Facebook, and other social media companies. Among other things, the move could strip the companies of protection from lawsuits stemming from comments or videos posted by individuals. All of this comes amid the backdrop of Twitter’s move to start fact-checking the president’s tweets, which he has condemned as politically biased. “We’re fed up with it,” Trump said at the signing, per the AP. Coverage:

  • 26 words: Get ready to hear a lot about “Section 230.” This is part of the 1996 Communications Decency Act, and legal experts (and authors) say it includes “26 words that created the Internet,” per CNN. Those words: “No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.” The section shields social media companies that act in “good faith” from lawsuits due to content posted on their platforms, and Trump’s executive order directs federal regulators to rethink the law.
  • More on the law: The 1996 statute is controversial because critics say it allows social media companies to reap profits while avoiding accountability for content such as hate speech and terrorist propaganda, reports the Washington Post. Any change in the law “could mean potentially dramatic free-speech implications and wide-ranging consequences for a broad swath of companies,” per the Post.
  • Bias allegations: The executive order also deals with accusations of political bias, and it would charge the FTC with handling complaints and making sure companies are adhering to pledges of neutrality. The current law gives companies much leeway to remove content they deem objectionable, and Trump contends they’re abusing their power, reports Politico. “In a country that has long cherished the freedom of expression, we cannot allow a limited number of online platforms to hand-pick the speech that Americans may access and convey online,” says a draft version.
  • Shift in view: Here’s how the Wall Street Journal sees the change: The executive order “would seek to reshape the way that federal regulators view Twitter and other social-media companies—not as hosts of speech but as monopolies that control millions of Americans’ daily experiences on their platforms.” But any change in regulations would almost certainly end up in court, with companies arguing that the federal government is guilty of overreach.
  • Not enough authority? The AP quotes a law professor at Yale who says any new regulation of social media companies would likely have to be approved by Congress.
  • The politics: Even if the initiative to impose new restrictions on the companies fails, Trump will likely relish the fight against media powerhouses he accuses of bias. The new Twitter fight is an example. “This plays right into President Trump’s hands,” Jason Miller, communications director for Trump’s 2016 campaign, tells CNN. “They basically handed him a massive gift.

Trump’s authoritarian streak continues to chest thumping for the powers that he just does not possess……

Threatening to shut down Twitter for flagging false content. Claiming he can “override” governors who dare to keep churches closed to congregants. Asserting the “absolute authority” to force states to reopen, even when local leaders say it’s too soon.

As he battles the coronavirus pandemic, President Donald Trump has been claiming extraordinarily sweeping powers that legal scholars say the president simply doesn’t have. And he has repeatedly refused to spell out the legal basis for those powers.

“It’s not that the president doesn’t have a remarkable amount of power to respond to a public health crisis. It’s that these are not the powers he has,” said Stephen Vladeck, a University of Texas School of Law professor who specializes in constitutional and national security law.

https://www.ctvnews.ca/world/trump-continues-to-claim-broad-powers-he-doesn-t-have-1.4958123

Trump’s attack here is an attack on internet free speech…..and he wants to get rid of it when it applies to him….

You may have never heard of it, but Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act is the legal backbone of the internet. The law was created almost 30 years ago to protect internet platforms from liability for many of the things third parties say or do on them. And now it’s under threat by one of its biggest beneficiaries: President Trump, who hopes to use it to fight back against the social media platforms he believes are unfairly censoring him and other conservative voices.

Section 230 says that internet platforms that host third-party content — think of tweets on Twitter, posts on Facebook, photos on Instagram, reviews on Yelp, or a news outlet’s reader comments — are not liable for what those third parties post (with a few exceptions). For instance, if a Yelp reviewer were to post something defamatory about a business, the business could sue the reviewer for libel, but it couldn’t sue Yelp. Without Section 230’s protections, the internet as we know it today would not exist. If the law were taken away, many websites driven by user-generated content would likely go dark.

https://www.vox.com/recode/2020/5/28/21273241/section-230-explained-trump-social-media-twitter-facebook

As I continue to write…..the Saga Continues……

I Read, I Write, You Know

“Lego ergo scribo”

100,000+ Milestone

We have reached a milestone of 100,000 deaths…..and some are asking just how did it come to this?

I would like to give a list of 12 things that Donald the Orange did to make it worse….

  • He didn’t prepare. For the first three years of his administration, he failed to take steps to prepare for a long-expected pandemic by expanding the inventory of critical medical supplies in the Strategic National Stockpile, strengthening the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and bolstering other critical components of our national public health system.
  • He ignored warnings. For several weeks starting in early January, he ignored early warnings about the grave threat posed by the coronavirus outbreak, squandering precious time needed to implement proven measures that would have limited active community spread of the virus.
  • He falsely assured the public. After the first COVID-19 cases were confirmed in the U.S., he repeatedly provided false assurances to the public that the coronavirus was contained and soon would disappear.
  • He failed to mobilize manufacturers. Trump failed to broadly and rapidly invoke his authority under the Defense Production Act to ramp up the manufacturing of:
    • Disposable masks, gowns, face shields and other personal protective equipment needed to prevent the spread of the coronavirus to health care workers, first responders, transportation workers and people employed in other essential occupations;
    • Coronavirus test kits and supplies that are essential to detecting infected individuals and performing contact tracing; and
    • Mechanical ventilators and other medical supplies for treating COVID-19 patients.
  • He dragged his feet on curbing the spread of the virus. He delayed the development and implementation of federal social distancing and stay-at-home guidelines until widespread community transmission of COVID-19 was well underway.
  • He failed on testing. He failed to order the development and implementation of a federally funded and coordinated plan for massively scaled-up testing, community tracing and quarantining of all infected individuals and their potentially infected contacts.
  • He muzzled the experts. He sidelined and muzzled CDC staff who are public health experts in the management and containment of infectious disease outbreaks.
  • He blocked reopening guidance. For several weeks, Trump blocked the release of detailed CDC guidance for how to safely reopen businesses.
  • He spewed lies. At daily White House briefing for several weeks, he spewed false and misleading information as well as rosy projections about the spread of the pandemic that confused the public and undermined the efforts of state officials who have been forced to take the lead in responding to the pandemic without adequate federal support and resources.
  • He touted dangerous, unproven drugs and remedies. He repeatedly touted the use of the antimalarial drugs chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine as “game-changing” treatments for COVID-19 despite the risk of potentially fatal adverse effects and the lack of any sound scientific evidence supporting such use. He even suggested crackpot ideas like injecting disinfectants to treat COVID-19.
  • He rushed reopening. Almost immediately after his own task force issued guidelines for a gradual, stepwise approach for reopening businesses and relaxing stay-at-home restrictions, he encouraged governors to reopen businesses and roll back restrictions well before their states met the minimal criteria outlined in the guidelines or had adequate programs for testing and contact tracing. In states that ignored his overtures, he encouraged people to engage in mass protests of stay-at-home orders and restrictions on businesses.
  • He discouraged the use of face masks. By refusing to wear a mask at public events, Trump has set a dangerous example for the rest of the country. The CDC recommends wearing a face mask in public where social distancing is difficult. Trump and other administration officials appear regularly without a mask, standing close to others.

There you go….you asked how so many deaths were possible, especially if you believe the propaganda the GOP spreads about the “best health care system” in the world…..

You may thank the moron in the White House for most of the deaths.

Do not get me wrong…we would have had many deaths but I do not think that it would have been so quick…..

With all these deaths common sense would tell us that the society as a whole would suffer…..but that would be totally wrong…..

Guess what?

Billionaires are doing just fine thanx to the pandemic…..

Statistics released Thursday by the U.S. Department of Labor show that with 2.1 million new unemployment claims filed last week, a staggering 40.7 million Americans have lost their jobs over just the past 10 weeks as mass layoffs induced by the coronavirus pandemic continue.

During that same 10-week period, according to a new analysis by the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS), the combined net worth of America’s billionaires soared by nearly half a trillion dollars, bringing their total wealth to $3.4 trillion.

“Billionaire wealth is surging at the same time that millions face suffering, hardship, and loss of life,” IPS, a progressive think tank, said Thursday, noting that more than 100,000 people have died of Covid-19 in the United States. “This is a grotesque indicator of the deep inequalities in U.S. society.”

https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/05/28/grotesque-while-41-million-people-lost-jobs-due-covid-19-us-billionaires-grew-nearly

Please stay informed….learn stuff….

Be well….Be Safe….Be Informed……

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

Riots!

Minneapolis is the latest American city to suffer from the death of a black man at the hands of the police and it has resulted in protests and now riots….and of curse Donald the Orange has done what he does best…..makes the matter worse……

The governor of Minnesota on Thursday activated the National Guard, and 500 soldiers will respond to Minneapolis, which has seen protests every night since Tuesday over the Monday death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, after a white cop kneeled on his neck. Also Thursday, the mayor of Minneapolis declared a state of emergency, KSTP reports. Looting, violence, smashed windows, and fires were widespread, and Fox 9 reports that after the Third Precinct police station started burning, the city warned that if gas lines had been cut the building could explode. CBS Minnesota reports protesters broke in and took over the building late Thursday.

Meanwhile, in Washington, President Trump—who earlier declared justice would be served in Floyd’s death—on Thursday referred to the Minneapolis protesters as “thugs,” the Raw Story reports. “I can’t stand back & watch this happen to a great American City, Minneapolis. A total lack of leadership. Either the very weak Radical Left Mayor, Jacob Frey, get his act together and bring the City under control, or I will send in the National Guard & get the job done right,” Trump tweeted, adding, “These THUGS are dishonoring the memory of George Floyd, and I won’t let that happen. Just spoke to Governor Tim Walz and told him that the Military is with him all the way. Any difficulty and we will assume control but, when the looting starts, the shooting starts. Thank you!”

The presidential words will do NOTHING yo make this situation better or at least calmer……

My thought on the riots.

I am not opposed to civil disobedience….but there is a time for violence……this situation needs the focus to be on the police that murdered this man and not on the riots from the anger.

I understand the anger and the frustration because there will most likely be little to no justice for the death….but the calm protests are overshadowed by the violence…the media needs the riots to make the conversation for them….a calm and peaceful protest is only good for a 30 second spot….while the violence can be analyzed for many many day and many spots.

This system of “justice” needs to be changed….and until we rid the world of Trump in the next election it is just wishful thinking.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”

 

North Korea/Kim News

Covid has pretty much sucked the air out of the international stories that we should be concerned with…….and North Korea is one of those countries that will use the pandemic as cover for their ambitions (kinda like Trump)……

Kim and “chukjibeop”……

North Korea’s official newspaper is reporting that Kim Jong Un can’t actually bend space and time. As the regime’s Rodong Sinmun newspaper revealed this week: “In realistic terms, a person cannot suddenly disappear and reappear by folding space.” A South Korean official told Yonhap News the development was “noteworthy” and said “it appears to stress patriotism and love for the people rather than mystification of the leaders.” Indeed, the Telegraph portrays this as an attempt to de-mythologize North Korea’s leaders and dispel a decades-old belief in “chukjibeop”—the notion that certain people can travel long distances in a short time by folding space.

It also jibes with a Kim quote after he and President Trump failed in 2019 to hammer out a denuclearization agreement for a second time. “Mystifying a leader’s revolutionary activity and appearance would result in covering the truth,” Kim said last March. “Absolute loyalty would spring up when (they) are mesmerised by the leader humanly and comradely.” For the curious, “chukjibeop” apparently derives from East Asian mythology and translates as “distance-shrinking magic,” per the International Business Times. There was a hit North Korean song called “General Uses Chukjibeop” about Kim’s dad, Kim Jong Il, using the supernatural power.

Those talks with NK have been stalled and now Kim decides that nukes would be the place to put his energies…..

North Korea’s peace talks have been stalled for many months, and with no signs of that changing soon, Kim Jong Un has announced that he will be working on enhancing North Korea’s nuclear deterrence and putting strategic forces on high alert.

Kim made this announcement in his later infrequent public appearance, the first in three weeks. During coronavirus, Kim has been se4en less and less, leading to international speculation at times about his status.

Though a peace process would clearly be preferable for all sides, the lack of any such options has North Korea’s state media emphasizing their ability to “reliably contain the persis6tent big or small military threats from hostile forces.

At one point, North Korea was to disarm its nuclear program as part of a peace and normalization deal with the US. The US refused to give North Korea any relief, and North Korea backed away from the process until the US was willing to give them something. The two nations have returned to not talking, and occasional US threats.

(antiwar.com)

Let’s take a look at the negotiations over 3 presidents through the eyes of National Interest……

George W. Bush vs Kim Jong-il ended zero to eight. Having entered office insisting that Kim Jong-il would never be allowed to develop nuclear weapons, as Bush left office, the intelligence community estimated that Kim had an arsenal of eight.

-Barack Obama vs Kim Jong-un requires two scores: Kim’s arsenal grew from eight balls to some twenty to sixty. But more consequentially, Kim ate his Wheaties and worked on extending the distance to which he can throw a ball from five feet to twenty-five feet (far enough to reach American military bases in Guam); and Kim was also practicing a maneuver that would allow him to throw shots eighty feet to hit the American homeland. 

-Under Trump, Kim increased and improved his arsenal of shots, including material for making the balls, but on the second metric—“throw distance”—while Kim perfected his technique to reliably throw balls to twenty-five feet, Kim stopped practicing the maneuver that would otherwise have proven beyond doubt he could throw shots all the way to Washington, DC.

Why should we as Americans care about the negotiations with North Korea?

Despite the COVID-19 crisis, Washington policymakers fixated on the status of Kim Jong-un, the 36-year-old leader of an isolated, impoverished state half a world away. Then came reports of North Korean construction of ICBMs and a new missile support facility.

The Pentagon previously cited Pyongyang as a reason the U.S. required a credible nuclear deterrent. President Donald Trump even threatened “fire and fury” against the Kim government, before switching course and organizing a summit with the communist monarch. At that time six of every ten Americans believed the North to be the nation posing the greatest threat to America.

Why do Americans pay attention to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK)?

https://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/foreign-policy/499431-why-do-americans-worry-about-north-korea

There always seems to be something happening on the Korean Peninsula……and we miss a lot of the stuff.

I Read, I Write, You Know

“lego ergo scribo”