March 2020 Archives

Some interesting reading

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Been waxing philosophical this evening. Ran into this incredible essay by John C. Wright - from March 26, 2014:

The Unified Field Theory of Madness
Do not be deceived: Leftism is an enigma. We need a theorem that explains not one or two aspects of Leftism, but all their traits.

The theory must explain, first, the honest decency of the modern liberals combined with their astonishing indifference, nay, hostility to facts, common sense, and evidence; second, it must explain their high self-esteem (or, to be blunt, their pathological narcissism) combined not merely with an utter lack of accomplishment, but with their utter devotion to destructiveness, a yearning to ruin everything they touch; third, it must explain their sanctimoniousness combined with their applause, praise, support, and tireless efforts to spread all perversions (especially sexual), moral decay, vulgarity, and every form of desecration; fourth, their pretense of intellectual superiority combined with their notorious mental fecklessness; fifth, it must explain both their violence and their pacifism; sixth, the theory must explain why they hate the very things they should love most; seventh, the theory must explain why they are incapable of comprehending an honest disagreement or any honorable foe.

And, while we are at it, if we could also explain why the Rich, who are routinely vilified by the Left number among its most ardent supporters, or the secular Jews, our theory would be very potent in its explanatory power.

There is such an explanation. I make no claim to have discovered this theory. It was discovered by Alan Bloom, back in the 1980’s, in his book THE CLOSING OF THE AMERICAN MIND, which he wrote to explain why the generation of the 1970’s was suddenly and remarkably stupider than any previous decade of his students.

The theory was popularized recently by Evan Sayet in his book KINDER GARDEN OF EDEN. Roots of this theory go back further yet: you will find an early articulation by C.S. Lewis in his seminal THE ABOLITION OF MAN, written a generation prior. And no doubt he learned his ideas from G.K. Chesterton in his ORTHODOXY, who wrote a generation prior again, and first diagnosed the error involved in Freethinkers (as they were called then) doubting one’s own ability to think.

Let us examine each one in order.

Just wow. You are going to be there for a long time - a good 30 minute read and then another couple hours thinking and re-reading.

Eight paradoxes dissected before your eyes. You will never be able to listen to a liberal and hold a straight face ever again.

A wonderful idea - Autarky

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From the InfoGalactic entry:

Autarky
Autarky is the quality of being self-sufficient. Usually the term is applied to political states or their economic systems. Autarky exists whenever an entity can survive or continue its activities without external assistance or international trade. If a self-sufficient economy also refuses all trade with the outside world then it is called a closed economy.

Autarky is not necessarily an economic phenomenon; for example, a military autarky would be a state that could defend itself without help from another country, or could manufacture all of its weapons without any imports from the outside world.

Autarky can be said to be the policy of a state or other entity when it seeks to be self-sufficient as a whole, but also can be limited to a narrow field such as possession of a key raw material. For example, many countries have a policy of autarky with respect to foodstuffs and water for national security reasons.

Looking at this list makes me smile:

Opponents of autarky:

    • Proletarian internationalism, World communism, Stateless communism, World revolution, Permanent revolution
    • Trotskyism, Fourth International
    • Classical liberalism, Neoliberalism
    • Neoconservatism
    • Libertarianism, Libertarian conservatism
    • Liberal internationalism
    • Anarcho-capitalism

Does not have to be total but I would love to see our manufacturing base return to within our borders. Sure, I want fresh fruit from Chile in the winter and Taiwanese or Indian machine tools (profoundly better quality than Chinese) and Japanese ham radio electronics but this is a mercantile decision on my part. To have the US make itself open for business again would be a very good thing for everyone here.

Working from home?

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Quake in Idaho

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Felt as far away as British Columbia but did not feel it here. USGS page: M 6.5 - 72km W of Challis, Idaho

From Yahoo/AccuWeather:

Idaho hit by strong magnitude 6.5 earthquake
A preliminary magnitude 6.5 earthquake rattled Idaho on Tuesday afternoon with shaking felt all across the region.

This is the strongest earthquake to hit the region since a magnitude 7.3 earthquake jolted the area in 1983.

The epicenter of the earthquake was located approximately 78 miles (126 km) northeast of Boise.

No word as to any structural damage or injuries - it was shallow (10km) and 6.5 is enough to cause serious damage to unreinforced buildings.

New York State? Seriously?

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California's governor releasing convicted murderers from prison to the general public was downright stupid. Now we see Democrat darling and Presidential-wannabe Cuomo doing the same thing (almost). From Pamela Geller:

NY Governor Cuomo RELEASES Eight Sex Offenders (Three Who Raped Children)
Three of these sex offenders were convicted for raping children. What happens if these criminals re-victimize children, Governor Cuomo? And the MSM exalts this idiot.

And it gets "better"

This weekend, the Monroe County, New York, jail freed more than 50 inmates from their custody as part of the state’s Department of Corrections and Community Services jailbreak effort in the midst of the coronavirus, according to WIVB 4.

Among those 50 inmates released were eight sex offenders, three of which were convicted for raping a child. Even as the New York state courts have deemed the sex offenders likely to re-victimize children, they were released.

Patrick Phelan, the chief of police in Greece, New York, told WIVB 4 that his office was not notified by state officials of the sex offenders’ release, though the state has placed them in a local Holiday Inn Express.

“We weren’t told by anyone. I think good practice would be if you’re going to release convicted felons,” Phelan said. “Some of them very violent some of those level 3 sex offenders, You might want to give law enforcement the heads up.”

No email to the Chief of Police? Stunning lack of forethought. I bet that New York State has essentially zero accountability and that the idiots in charge were political appointees and did not go through a traditional hiring process.

Some tweets

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Great thread at Twitchy (a Twitter aggregator) - I have cut and pasted the tweets into a continuous narrative (and added her to my follow list):

The media's histrionics are about 2 things:

1. They are terrified of the public seeing that private industry is far more effective and efficient than govt.

2. They are terrified that Trump will preside over the successful containment of the first real pandemic to hit the US.

They need private industry to fail because they need to show that only government can protect you.

They need this pandemic to be deadly and uncontained because otherwise Trump will be able to claim the win.

Everything to date has shown the massive inefficiencies of a large, centralized government.

CV has shown that bottom up leadership is most effective. It's proven Federalism right insomuch as when local leaders are competent, they're unequivocally best to react to emergencies.

And when they are not competent *cough* de Blasio *cough* Whitmer *cough* the leaders above them hold their incompetent little hands and help them do their duty.

In addition, this has highlighted regulatory hurdles that are unneccessary.
Government bureaucracy is built on regulations. And coronavirus is placing a glaring light on how much bureaucracy gets in the way of progress. Real progress.

So they're angry.
Angry that their worldview is being proven wrong.
Angry that they're no longer the gatekeepers.
Angry that we can fact check their lying asses in real time.
Angry that every belief they ever held dear is crumbling into a heap of regret and disillusionment.

Fact check? 100% correct on everything.

The media dinosaur knows that it's spinal column has been severed and that it is dying alone but it is in denial and still trying to call itself relevent in today's connected world.

They could have adapted and changed with the times but they did not. Too bad. So sad.

More software to try - digiKam

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Photo processing software - looks interesting: digiKam

Open source so free to use - Linux, Windows and Mac. The most recent is version 7.xxx so this is a mature product.

Nothing happening out there

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Been working at home - more work on the music computer as well as the garage.

Still figuring out optimal layout for the garage so I am going through plan after plan after... Up to Plan L (subsection 249, revision C) for now but that will probably change between now and dinnertime.

Stop for a break every so often and wander around the internet but nothing of any substance is happening out there.

Back to work. Going to be starting the living room flooring in a day or so.

Not doing that well - the mafia

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Looks like everyone is having a bad day - from the New York Post:

How coronavirus cripples the New York Mafia
The coronavirus has succeeded where lawmen like Bobby Kennedy and Rudy Giuliani failed for more than a century — by putting the freeze on the mob.

The wholesale cancellation of major sports in the face of the contagion has wiped out tens of millions of dollars in illegal gambling income, a “historic” blow to the Mafia, law enforcement sources told The Post.

“There’s never been a time when they weren’t making money through gambling,” said one insider. “Since the days of Lucky Luciano, when the Five Families started.

“This is historic.”

I'm sure they have their fingers in some pies somewhere - not stupid people and you always need to have contingency plans in any business endeavor. Still...

Those warrants that allowed Obama's FBI to wiretap Trump's people during the runup to the 2016 election?
From The Gateway Pundit:

'Lack of Confidence in FBI's Procedures' - DOJ IG Audit of 29 FISA Warrants Finds Errors with All of Them
The DOJ’s Office of Inspector General on Tuesday said in a report it still has a “lack of confidence” in the FBI’s FISA procedures.

Horowitz’s office found errors in all of the 29 FISA applications it reviewed during an audit as follow-up to an investigation of the bureau’s illegal spying of Carter Page.

Horowitz previously admonished the FBI for making “17 significant errors and inaccuracies” when it sought and obtained a total of four FISA warrants on Trump campaign advisor Carter Page.

The OIG released a report on Tuesday revealing the FBI’s FISA abuse is still a widespread ongoing problem.

The 15 page report is here: Office of the Inspector General - short and to the point. Damning. The Obama administration was about as crooked as you can be.

California? Seriously?

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From Breitbart:

California Gov. Gavin Newsom Commutes Sentences for 14 Convicted Killers
California Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) is responding to the Chinese coronavirus crisis by commuting the sentences of 14 felons convicted of murder or being involved in a murder.

Newsom made the decision to more quickly commute felons’ sentences in the midst of the coronavirus, providing early release through parole to about 19 felons — some of whom killed children and one convict who murdered a pregnant woman.

Two of the felons are immigrants to the U.S., and Newsom’s purpose for commuting their sentences is to have them avoid deportation.

What is wrong with these people.

And back

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Surf for a bit, lunch and then to work.

And out for the morning

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Ham radio drill - now more than ever...

And that is it for the evening

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Early morning tomorrow - ham radio drill.

Got an interesting email from someone I knew pretty well about two years ago. Bit of an age difference between us but who knows.

L and I did not work out - looking for different things in our future. Life continues to be a fascinating challenge - love it.

Now this is very cool - ventilator

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A release from medical equipment company Medtronic:

OUR VENTILATOR SPECIFICATIONS.
YOUR INGENUITY.
Medtronic is mobilizing to fight the COVID-19 pandemic — and we’re inviting innovators everywhere to join us. Currently, there is a shortage of respirators and ventilators around the world. As recently announced, Medtronic is responding to this crisis by making the design files for the PB560 ventilator system available to the public. Our hope is that manufacturers and engineers will use this intellectual property to inspire their own potentially lifesaving innovations.

To access the specifications, please register below. After you do, you will be redirected to a new page on medtronic.com to download the files. Note that all documents and guidance are subject to the provisions and restrictions contained within the assets being provided.

Thank you for your interest in using innovation to save lives. Together, we can help speed the development and production of this important technology.

So now, other companies like GE and the automotive manufacturers wanting to make ventilators can just copy this proven and approved design. Great move Medtronic!

And now we know - choir practice

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These were educated people and still did not follow the rules. Paying the price. The rules simply did not apply to them.

I had posted this on March 22nd:

Skagit Co. investigates cluster of COVID-19 cases linked to group meeting
Health officials in Skagit County are investigating a cluster of coronavirus cases traced to a group meeting of approximately 60 people in early March.

Testing has found that more than half of the attendees who were at this gathering are now confirmed or probable cases of COVID-19.

"This situation clearly illustrates the highly contagious nature of COVID-19 and emphasizes the importance of following social distancing guidelines in order to control the spread of the virus," Skagit County health officials said in a prepared statement.

Today, from the Los Angeles Times:

A choir decided to go ahead with rehearsal. Now dozens of members have COVID-19 and two are dead
Everybody came with their own sheet music and avoided direct physical contact. Some members helped set up or remove folding chairs. A few helped themselves to mandarins that had been put out on a table in back.

Experts said the choir outbreak is consistent with a growing body of evidence that the virus can be transmitted through aerosols — particles smaller than 5 micrometers that can float in the air for minutes or longer.

The World Health Organization has downplayed the possibility of transmission in aerosols, stressing that the virus is spread through much larger “respiratory droplets,” which are emitted when an infected person coughs or sneezes and quickly fall to a surface.

But a study published March 17 in the New England Journal of Medicine found that when the virus was suspended in a mist under laboratory conditions it remained “viable and infectious” for three hours — though researchers have said that time period would probably be no more than a half-hour in real-world conditions.

The World Health Organization is a political organization and has zero use in today's society - they need to be defunded and disbanded. They have failed to accomplish their primary charter. How many billions of dollars wasted for nothing except some fancy dinners in exotic locales.

And this nugget of information:

With three-quarters of the choir members testing positive for the virus or showing symptoms of infection, the outbreak would be considered a “super-spreading event,” he said.

Three quarters getting infected? That is huge.

The choir practice was on March 10th. The first person got sick three days later. Finally:

On March 17, a choir member alerted Skagit County Public Health about the outbreak.

Working from the choir’s membership roster, a dozen health officers scrambled for three days to contain the outbreak. They called every member, determining who had attended the rehearsal.

They asked each person with symptoms to list their close contacts during the 24 hours before illness set in. Then they called those people, telling anyone who felt sick to quarantine themselves.

“We think it was just a really super-unfortunate, high-risk occurrence,” said Dubbel, the county health official.

Unfortunate? No. It was a blatant disregard of common safety practices when dealing with an unknown pathogen. Words fail.

COVID-19 in film

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Shows what you can do when you have a lot of time on your hands...

From Austin, TX film company Cut to Black

The numbers look good - from Tech Startup:

Dr. Vladimir Zelenko has now treated 699 coronavirus patients with 100% success using Hydroxychloroquine Sulfate, Zinc and Z-Pak
Last Wednesday, we published the success story from Dr. Vladimir Zelenko, a board-certified family practitioner in New York, after he successfully treated 350 coronavirus patients with 100 percent success using a cocktail of drugs: hydroxychloroquine, in combination with azithromycin (Z-Pak), an antibiotic to treat secondary infections, and zinc sulfate.  Dr. Zelenko said he saw the symptom of shortness of breath resolved within four to six hours after treatment.

Now, Dr. Zelenko provides updates on the treatment after he successfully treated 699 COVID-19 patients in New York. In an exclusive interview with former New York Mayor, Rudy Giuliani, Dr. Vladmir Zelenko shares the results of his latest study, which showed that out of his 699 patients treated, zero patients died, zero patients intubated, and four hospitalizations.

Dr. Zelenko said the whole treatment costs only $20 over a period of 5 days with 100% success. He defines success as “Not to die.” Dr. Zelenko first posted his Facebook video message last week calling on President Trump to “advise the country that they should be taking this medication.”

There are many other success stories about hydroxychloroquine across the country. Last week, Dr. William Grace, an oncologist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, said they’ve not had a single death in their hospital because of  hydroxychloroquine. “Thanks to hydroxychloroquine, we have not had a death in our hospital,’ Dr. Grace said.

Also, in a study conducted by the National Institute of Health (NIH) also confirmed some of Dr. Dr. Zelenko’s findings. The study by NIH showed that Zinc supplementation decreases the morbidity of lower respiratory tract infection in pediatric patients in the developing world. A second study also conducted by NIH titled: “In Vitro Antiviral Activity and Projection of Optimized Dosing Design of Hydroxychloroquine for the Treatment of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2),” also showed hydroxychloroquine to be more potent in killing the virus off in vitro (in the test tube and not in the body).

Now we just need to get it out there - they should have kits available at WalMart for $4.27.

Chinese flu humor

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We find funny things in the darkest places - wired that way. From Grouchy Old Cripple:

20200330-spider.jpg

Groceries dropped off

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Just had one delivery today - people very happy to have a lifeline. Our little island has a really strong sense of community - I love this place.

Truth in reporting - Rachel Maddow

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UPDATE below.

Not known for her accuracy. On Friday, March 20th, she said this on the air:

That was ten days ago - this morning?

20200330-comfort.jpg

And from Ms. Maddow? Corrections? Amplifications? Retractions?

...

...

... crickets ...

...

...

UPDATE: Just checked and Comfort's sister ship (Mercy) arrived at Port of Los Angeles on Friday the 27th - exactly one week after Ms. Maddow's proclimation.

From Don Surber:

Biden versus the virus
Glenn K. Beaton asked the question, "What if Obama were president now?"

His was a good, well-researched column that makes the point that President Donald John Trump is doing a better job than Obama would have.

But Obama cannot be president. He had two terms and did all the damage he can do. He left with $150 million in bribes laundered through a book deal and a gig at Netflix, all perfectly legal and evil.

The question is how different would Biden handle things.

First, he would not have restricted travel with Red China on January 31. We know this because Biden protested that President Trump's restrictions were xenophobic.

We also know that Biden was in Red China's pocket because Red China invested $1.5 billion in Hunter Biden's investment scam.

President Trump is not for sale.

Specifics at the site - a Biden presidency would be a disaster even if the Chinese Flu was not happening. Well thought out - we are dodging a bullet here.

And it's coffee time

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Heading out for coffee. Got some deliveries later this afternoon - working at home until then.

Now this will be fun - France

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Looks like France may be in for a bit of a problem - from Voice of Europe:

France: Top government official argues enforcement of quarantine in migrant areas should ‘not be a priority’ in order to avoid riots
In France, a top official in Macron’s government has said that unlike the strict measures that have been imposed on the vast majority of the country’s population, the enforcement of quarantine shouldn’t be enforced in areas heavily populated with migrants so as to avoid riots.

“It is not a priority to enforce closings in certain neighborhoods and to stop gatherings,” French Secretary of State to the Ministry of the Interior Laurent Nunez said in a letter that was leaked to the Le Cenard Enchaine, French weekly news magazine Valeurs Actuelles reports.

In a video conference call, Nunez argued that restricting the movement of those who live in what are widely referred to as ‘no-go areas’ could ignite violent social disorder if applied with too much vigor.

Nunez’s colleague who was on the call also agreed that businesses in these so-called ‘no-go areas’ should be kept open so as to assist with “social mediation”.

Actually, this is perfect. The unassimilated immigrants will die. Problem solved. We are literally dealing with willfully ignorant savages here:

Last week, Voice of Europe reported that police in Paris’s no-go zones were already having trouble enforcing the country’s quarantine measures. One police officer who’s assigned to the infamous Saint-Denis suburb told local media that many of the migrants living in these areas believe that the pandemic itself is a story invented by whites for the purpose of oppressing them.

“They don’t understand anything,” the policeman said. “Some of them are even saying that the virus is a fable invented by white people to force them to get off the streets.”

Days earlier, video footage surfaced which shows an African woman in Château Rouge, in the 18th arrondissement, becoming aggressive and belligerent after she’s approached by police for refusing to respect the quarantine measures.

“Let me have the coronavirus! You will have it too!” the African woman shouts at the police as she purposefully and savagely coughs in their faces.

I am not being racist - this is not about skin color. This is about culture and how one culture can not be imported into another culture successfully without some measure of effort on the newcomer's part. They fled Africa because their culture has turned Africa into a shithole. They are now trying to re-make France into their own personal shithole as this is all that they know.

It is brutal but it is also honest: Adapt or Die

They were using video from an Italian emergency room and labelling it as video from a New York City hospital. From The Gateway Pundit:

CBS News Caught Using Footage from an Italian Hospital to Describe Conditions in New York City (VIDEO)

Video clips at the site - this is really damning. Time for the FCC to pull their broadcast license.

Italy failed to implement social distancing and they now have one death for every 5,789 citizens. In the United States, this number is one death for every 157,499 citizens. This is 27 times lower. It is no wonder that the Italian hospitals are a madhouse.

A difficult decision but a good one in light of the numbers - from FOX News:

Trump says coronavirus to peak ‘around Easter,’ slams Pelosi criticism in ‘Fox & Friends’ interview
President Trump, in an extensive interview Monday with “Fox & Friends,” predicted coronavirus cases in the U.S. will likely peak “around Easter” as he defended his administration’s decision to extend strict social distancing guidelines through the end of April – suggesting millions of lives could be saved by the measures.

The president also slammed House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., in response to her charge on Sunday that people are dying as he "fiddles."

"She’s a sick puppy, in my opinion," Trump said.

She is - she is seriously out of touch with reality and has been for the last 5-10 years.

From Louisiana’s The Hayride:

Gov. Abbott Seals Texas-Louisiana Border
On Sunday, Gov. Greg Abbott ordered that travel be restricted between Texas and Louisiana.

The order, which went into effect midnight, did not give Texans much time to stock up on boudin balls or Western Lousianans to sneak in a quick supply run to Houston.

Abbott’s original order restricted air travel to New Orleans and New York, requiring travelers to self-quarantine for 14 days. The new order covers vehicle travel if not for “essential activities.”

This is a developing story.

Good move - New Orleans "Katrina'd" themselves again and kept Mardi Gras running with no restrictions - they ignored the warnings. They are now paying the price and Governor Abbott has no desire to spread the love. A very wise call.

And that is it for tonight

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YouTube for a while and then an early bedtime. Doing grocery driving tomorrow for the community center. Ham Radio drill tuesday.

This time, it's the coronavirus. The Kung Flu. The Wuhan disease. From Daniel Greenfield writing at Sultan Knish:

Who's Funding the Coronavirus Political Trolls?
Everyone gave something.

Steven Spielberg and his wife gave $100,000. His former partner, Jeffrey Katzenberg, gave another $100,000. The producers of Lost gave over $50,000. Jett actress Carla Gugino also chipped in.

Not to relief efforts dealing with the coronavirus, but to a hate campaign against Trump.

Everyone has their own brand of patriotism, and for some Hollywood celebrities, that meant giving big to Pacronym: a sleazy money machine targeting President Trump run by Tara McGowan. McGowan, a former 60 Minutes vet reporter turned Obama hack, was supposed to brilliantly transform Dem campaigning with innovative tactics like seeding fake news through fake local papers under Courier Newsroom, and Shadow Inc: the mysterious company behind the Iowa caucus disaster.

But McGowan has never found a sewer she couldn’t crawl out of and is relaunching her reputation by using the coronavirus crisis to run digital ads attacking President Trump. And donors to Pacronym, a PAC affiliate of McGowan’s Acronym, a non-profit, which somehow ties in with for-profits and a PAC, include Hollywood celebrities, writers, CEOs and financial whiz kids, helping divide America during a crisis.

Sleezy people. Just because you can act a decent character on screen does not make you smart. It does not mean that you have a better handle on reality than us normals out here. Stick to what you are good at and leave the rest of us alone - thank you.

Much more at the site - Daniel does a good job of following the money. Kurt  Schlichter has this wonderful rant at Town Hall:

The People Our Loser Elite Look Down Upon Are Saving Our Bacon
Here are some people who are useless, especially now: Performance artists, diversity consultants, magic crystal healers, sociology TAs, members of the mainstream media, and gender-unspecified entities who brew kale kombucha.

Here are some people who matter, especially now: Soldiers, nurses, truckers, cops, the guy who stocks the shelves at Ralphs, farmers, and that dude rebuilding your roof.

A bit more:

Our elite is full of self-important morons who contribute nothing but more dumb in a time when the only thing we have a surplus of is dumb. The real hero is the guy who trucks in a load of whole wheat bread, ribeyes, and low-priced cabernet to the Trader Joe’s, not the Prius-piloting sissy with a Maddow fetish who shops there. The people our elite laughed at, scoffed at, poked at, are the very people who are going to rescue us from the mess that same elite helped make.

True words - more at the site.

Let's see:

  • Steele Dossier? FAIL
  • Russian Collusion? FAIL
  • Meuller Report? FAIL
  • Impeachment? FAIL

What are these idiots going to try next? I am reminded of that wonderful quote from Robert Anson Heinlein:

“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.”

I have done most of these and do not consider myself to be exceptional - this is stuff that people just do when needed. I have not planned any invasions, I have not butchered a hog but I have done many chickens and ducks and a deer or two (as a teenager with help). Not poetically inclined so the sonnet is out. Not set a bone but I am trained in first aid and could. Not planning to die anytime soon but when I go, I hope it is gallantly. Everything else I have done. I would like to see the track record for our cultural elites. They are wearing clothing from the emperor's tailors.

We could be having a renaissance of the Hut-Sut Song

Earworm? You're welcome 😁

Seeing some horrible things coming out of Eastern Europe:

If I walk like this on my way to my morning coffee, just put me out of my misery...

Turned into a nice day

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Skies cleared up and it is in the high 50's. The data from The Weather Channel is showing rain for the next week but Cliff Mass has some good words:

An Encouraging Weather Forecast
We all need some good news and I will give that to you.

The weather is going to improve by next weekend here in the Northwest. Much warmer and even some sun.

But there is also some bad news....we will have to get through a cool/cloudy period first.

Let's face it. It has been cool and murky this week, a situation that heightened the stress of all the virus news. Below are the temperatures at SeaTac during the past two weeks, with the normal highs and lows plotted. Our daily maximum temperatures have been well below normal the last six days. Like 5-10F below normal. Plus lots of clouds and light rain.

And the good news:

Fortunately, as the week progresses an upper level ridge of high pressure will build along the West Coast and temperatures will rise.   To warm you up, here is the latest forecast for high and low temperatures at SeaTac based on the European Center ensemble forecasting system (running their model many times and taking the average).  High temperatures climb roughly 10 degrees between this weekend/Monday/Tuesday and later in the week.  You will notice that.

Much needed - time for the grass to dry out so I can start working clearing it out and getting some plantings in.

From the Eugene, OR Register-Guard:

FAQ: Oregonians can pump own gas, fire marshal temporarily allows for self-service
Oregonians now may pump their own gas in Oregon through April 11, as the state fire marshal has temporarily lifted restrictions on self-service at gas stations.

“During this unprecedented time of state emergency, we need to ensure that critical supply lines for fuels and other basic services remain uninterrupted,” state Fire Marshal Jim Walker said in a Saturday news release.

Can I pump my own gas now in Oregon?
Yes, under this provision, you may pump your own gas through April 11, 2020.

Where in the state can I pump my own gas under this provision?
Anywhere. It is effective 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Do I have to have an attendant do anything?
Under this provision, no.

How will I know how to pump my own gas?
There should be instructions posted on the dispensing equipment. In addition, the state has produced a flier that operators may post at dispensers. The flier provides safety instructions for the dispensing of gasoline, general operating instructions, and measures to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Pumping gas in Oregon was outlawed in the 1950's and boils down to big money. Stations that didn't have attendents could charge less for gasoline. Big gas companies did not like that. Stories here, here and here. For the canonical video: here

This is going to escalate quickly - from Breitbart:

CDC: Japanese Data Show Indoor Coronavirus Transmission 18.7 Times Likelier, as Garcetti Moves L.A. Homeless to Rec Centers
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently published a paper reporting that Japanese data showed that coronavirus transmission was nearly 20 times more likely indoors than outdoors.

L.A. Mayor Eric Garcetti is moving hundreds of homeless people into recreation centers in residential areas — a policy that is receiving increasing scrutiny and criticism from residents and the media.

The Los Angeles Times reported this weekend that there is growing discord in California about Garcetti’s plan to help the homeless:

There has been pushback to using the recreation centers, though, and a fear that they could be incubators for spreading the novel coronavirus among an already high-risk population. While most health experts, advocates and some politicians agree that quick action will require using multiple types of shelter, they say single-occupancy spaces such as motel or hotel rooms are safer.

The CDC paper, dated Mar. 18, 2020, has surfaced amidst debates about whether to move homeless people indoors to protect them from the coronavirus pandemic — or whether doing so would actually expose them to more risk.

The LA Times page is behind a pay-wall so not linking to them. This is going to rip through that very fragile community like a hot knife through butter. The Wuhan Virus is transmitted through body fluids of which poop and pee are perfect examples. Talk about a bad decision - Garcetti is going to have to live with these consequences.

Back home again

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Nice day for a drive so went out to Costco and the food coop. Rain off and on - high overcast.

Doing a dump run shortly and then working in the music room and taking care of two projects in the garage. Breaking for lunch and a quick surf...

And up for the day

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Feeling a bit sleepy but see how the day goes - otherwise fine.

Forecast is for showers for today and tomorrow with T-Storms on tuesday. We will see... Our sun remains sunspot-free which puts us at 78% free for the year - one percentage point higher than last year and the previous record set in 1913.

Stupid human tricks

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Soooo true:

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A reminder - January 2020

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In January, there were warnings about an infectious virus from China. What happened?

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We got our free government handout now so screw you little guys. From The Washington Free Beacon:

Kennedy Center Tells Musicians It Will Stop Paying Them Hours After $25 Million Bailout Is Signed
The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts informed members of the National Symphony Orchestra that they would no longer be paid just hours after President Trump signed a $25 million taxpayer bailout for the cultural center, according to an email obtained by the Washington Free Beacon.

Nearly 100 musicians will no longer receive paychecks after April 3, according to an email from the orchestra's Covid-19 Advisory Committee.

"The Covid-19 Advisory Committee was broadsided today during our conversation with [Kennedy Center President] Deborah Rutter," the email says. "Ms. Rutter abruptly informed us today that the last paycheck for all musicians and librarians will be April 3 and that we will not be paid again until the Center reopens."

The email went out to members on Friday evening, shortly after President Trump signed the $2 trillion CARES Act, a stimulus package intended to provide relief to people left unemployed by the coronavirus pandemic. Congress included $25 million in taxpayer funding for the Kennedy Center, a provision that raised eyebrows from both Democrats and Republicans, but ultimately won support from President Trump. The bailout was designed to "cover operating expenses required to ensure the continuity of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and its affiliates, including for employee compensation and benefits, grants, contracts, payments for rent or utilities, fees for artists or performers," according to the law's text. The arts organization decided that the relief did not extend to members of the National Symphony Orchestra, its house orchestra.

"Everyone should proceed as if their last paycheck will be April 3," the email says. "We understand this will come [as a] shock to all of you, as it did to us."

And of course - those immortal words:

The Kennedy Center did not return request for comment.

A bunch of putzes - they need to have their funding cut by 30%. If they are doing such great work, let them run at a profit. Keep my hard-earned taxpayer dollars out of their grubby little hands.

And back again

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Feeling a lot better - see how things go. Found the pups outside rumbling around - the weather is windy today and a gust blew open the front door. They know enough not to wander so zero problems but still...

Hmmmm - odd

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Had a bit of trouble sleeping last evening, slept in this morning and now feeling downright nappish.

Otherwise feeling good - just low energy. Sleep for an hour or so and see how the rest of the day goes...

Interesting article from the Los Angeles Times:

California once had mobile hospitals and a ventilator stockpile. But it dismantled them
They were ready to roll whenever disaster struck California: three 200-bed mobile hospitals that could be deployed to the scene of a crisis on flatbed trucks and provide advanced medical care to the injured and sick within 72 hours.

Each hospital would be the size of a football field, with a surgery ward, intensive care unit and X-ray equipment. Medical response teams would also have access to a massive stockpile of emergency supplies: 50 million N95 respirators, 2,400 portable ventilators and kits to set up 21,000 additional patient beds wherever they were needed.

And when was these halcyon days? Under the Governator:

In 2006, citing the threat of avian flu, then-Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger announced the state would invest hundreds of millions of dollars in a powerful set of medical weapons to deploy in the case of large-scale emergencies and natural disasters such as earthquakes, fires and pandemics.

“In light of the pandemic flu risk, it is absolutely a critical investment,” he told a news conference. “I’m not willing to gamble with the people’s safety.”

And then, in 2011, Jerry Brown gets elected Governor and it all falls apart:

And so, that year, the state cut off the money to store and maintain the stockpile of supplies and the mobile hospitals. The hospitals were defunded before they’d ever been used.

Much of the medical equipment — including the ventilators, critical life-saving tools that are in short supply in the current pandemic — was given to local hospitals and health agencies, former health officials said. But the equipment was donated without any funding to maintain them. The respirators were allowed to expire without being replaced.

Together, these two programs would have positioned California to more rapidly respond as its COVID-19 cases exploded. The annual savings for eliminating both programs? No more than $5.8 million per year, according to state budget records, a tiny fraction of the 2011 budget, which totaled $129 billion.

But they saved $5.8 million dollars - yeah which was 0.0044% of the total overall budget for the state. A pittance and now it is coming back to bite them. All the money wasted on solar scams, wasted on high-speed rail, on tax subsidies for green crap. All wasted. Sure felt good to spend it and it looked good to the low-information voter but it did not add anything to the quality of life or the benefit of the state or its citizenry.

Let us hope that this will foster a grand awakening for people to come to their senses. Liberal spending plans do not work and liberal governments have zero accountability for monies spent.

Today's message:

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Tip of the hat to Vanderleun for the link.

A day of rest

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Had a lot of plans for things to do today but just feeling like taking things easy. Slept in and will be puttering around doing nothing for the day. Sometimes these are needed.

Early bedtime

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Got a bunch that I want to do tomorrow and feeling a bit drowsy so calling it an early evening.

Looks like a fun project for boating

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Great project from Tom's Hardware:

This Raspberry Pi Boat Computer Is for Sailors
Ready to hit the water? This Raspberry Pi boating project was created by a developer known on Reddit as bearthesailor. Bareboat Necessities is a DIY Pi-powered computer designed with all of your boating needs in mind.

This project houses a Raspberry Pi 4 below deck, so waterproofing your Pi isn't necessary. The Bareboat Necessities has a panel of interfaces on the front and back with a wide selection of features. You'll find USB ports, voltage meters and power switches for different components. There are even RF connectors to use with antennas.

The maker has the Pi running the Pi's Raspbian operating system, along with OpenPlotter 2.0, an open-source sailing platform. Because the project uses a Raspberry Pi 4, you can use Wi-Fi to set up the software remotely and even access the boat computer using a smartphone or tablet.

Bearthesailor provided a big list of recommended software on the project Github page. You can find applications to display weather predictions, a compass, plus temperature and barometric readings. There are even marine-specific applications, like SailGuage to help monitor things such as speed over ground, course over ground and depth below transducer.

Tuktuk Chart Plotter and KIP Dashboard interface with Signal K—an open-source self-described universal marine data exchange. And, of course, you can add a music player because boats absolutely need kicking tunes.

Here is the GitHub listing - project description, code, parts list complete with vendors and links (Amazon, DigiKey and AliBaba): Bareboat Necessities Projects

Very comprehensive design and the engineering is well thought out.

Dinnertime

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Got two more meals worth of beef stew left - having one of those for dinner tonight. Salad and some nice crusty bread slathered in Kerrygold butter.

Two otters playing in the water - lots of fun to watch. Overcast and has been sprinkling off and on - more rain in the forecast through Wednesday.

When bureaucracies ruled the world

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Another perfect example of what happens when a bureaucracy is not managed correctly - from John Solomon at Just The News:

NIH failed to test coronavirus drugs, studied drunk monkeys, soap operas, and tailgating instead
On a steamy summer day inside the lecture auditorium of the storied National Institutes of Health headquarters, Dr. Michael Bracken delivered a stark message to an audience that dedicated its life, and owed its living, to medical research.

As much as 87.5% of biomedical research is wasted or inefficient, the respected Yale University epidemiologist declared in a sobering assessment for a federal research agency that spends about $40 billion a year on medical studies.

He backed his staggering statistic with these additional stats: 50 out of every 100 medical studies fail to produce published findings, and half of those that do publish have serious design flaws. And those that aren’t flawed and manage to publish are often needlessly redundant.

This was four years ago. Nothing has happened since:

“Waste is more than just a waste of money and resources,” Bracken preached to the audience back in July 2016, according to the NIH’s official account of the speech. “It can actually be harmful to people’s health.”

Nearly four years later, Bracken’s sweeping indictment about the financial management, organization and conduct of federal medical research looms large over a series of “what if” questions about the deadly and ever-spreading COVID-19 pandemic:

    • What if the research community hadn’t bet all its marbles on the next pandemic coming from a flu instead of a version of the coronavirus?
    • What if NIH or other agencies had funded research into the efficacy of drugs like chloroquine, hydroxychloroquine, remdesivir, and HIV cocktails that had shown promise against coronavirus dating back to 2003?
    • What if more pressure had been applied by the medical governance world to develop vaccines aimed at coronavirus?
    • What if the medical community had simply adjusted its outdated modeling that predicted coronavirus would spread slowly and could be contained to account for the massive growth in global air travel the last decade that transported this virus from China to the West in treacherously fast time?

I do hope that heads will roll - this level of incompetence is stunning. This is what happens when you kick the can down the road. John has compiled a lit of what the NIH HAS been doing with our money (taxpayer dollars remember?)

Unreal. Much more at the site - it gets better (actually, not).

Bill DeBlasio needs to clean house. From Politico:

With opaque budget and elusive metrics, $850M ThriveNYC program attempts a reset
Since its inception in 2015, ThriveNYC — the city's sprawling $850 million initiative to address a variety of mental health issues — has operated without much scrutiny or accountability.

With few public metrics by which to measure its success so far, and the broad strokes used by city officials to describe its operations, the city has offered little insight into how it has assessed Thrive's efficacy since it began.

And because Thrive encompasses a variety of initiatives — some new, some already in existence — across more than a dozen agencies, it is difficult to establish a central, line-item budget delineating how the city is spending taxpayer dollars on the program.

POLITICO spoke to more than 16 people, including elected officials, advocates, representatives of community organizations, researchers and consultants who said that although it is crucial for the city to invest in mental health resources, they did not know whether Thrive was successful and said the city has an obligation to publicize its numbers and how it compares to the goals it set out to accomplish. Some requested anonymity for fear of retaliation while others were more vocal in their critiques.

And the next sentence sums everything up perfectly and ties a pretty bow on the top of its pointy little head:

Run by the mayor’s wife and closest adviser, Chirlane McCray

And a bit more:

POLITICO filed a records request for the program's line-item budget in October 2018, but the city has twice requested an extension. Two budget breakdowns acquired by POLITICO — one from City Hall and one from the Independent Budget Office — show significant differences in spending.

If this was a real business, they would be able to walk over to a computer and generate a P&L statement with a few keystrokes. Printing out the complete COA would be a bit more involved but nothing that would require an extension. Who is in charge of oversight and who do they report to? The director's husband? Much more at the site - well worth reading.

One simply does not screw around with the supply lines. They are not "glamorous" but they keep the thin veneer of civilization functioning. Every singly thing in a large city was brought there on a truck and I do mean everything. The light bulbs, the furniture, the groceries and even the cement and the steel that make up every single skyscraper. All brought there on a truck.

From MSN/Bloomberg:

Truckers Wary of New York Deliveries Create Headache for Grocers
Delivering food to New York City’s supermarkets isn’t easy even in normal times. Now, it’s become a supply chain conundrum that’s testing the nerves of grocers, truckers and manufacturers alike.

Some truckers are refusing to carry orders into the city and surrounding suburbs like New Rochelle that have been hard hit by the coronavirus, even as demand for groceries is double or triple normal levels as shoppers stockpile soup and other everyday goods.

There is no evidence that food is growing scarce in the city. But one index, which measures loads of all types of goods destined for Brooklyn that were rejected by shippers, has tripled compared with the same time last year, reflecting carriers’ inability or unwillingness to haul loads into the epicenter of the outbreak.

This pandemic might be just the thing we needed to wake people up. The deep state is not our friend.

Wise words

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"You will never understand bureaucracies until you understand that for bureaucrats procedure is everything and outcomes are nothing."
--Thomas Sowell

And back to work

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Another hour or so and then heading out to drop off some groceries.

Nothing happening on the ham radio front - people are checking in on a regular basis but no agency is calling us up. Things seem to be well in hand for these two counties.

Dr. Deborah Birx debunked the major media talking points on the Wuhan Flu epidemic and the media does not like it. They control the narrative and do not like anyone else having access to it. She could confuse the deplorables and dilute the Democrat message. From BizPac Review:

Explosion of leftist hate aimed at Dr Birx after she demolishes media’s panic narrative
Dr. Deborah L. Birx, the response coordinator for the White House Coronavirus Task Force, has proven to be a voice of reason in a time of crisis — much to the angst of the hostile, anti-Trump media.

The hair-on-fire media is pushing a panic-inducing worst-case narrative in the face of the COVID-19 outbreak, focusing on predictions of alarming increases in those who contract the Chinese virus while reporting on dwindling hospital supplies and do-not-resuscitate orders allegedly being discussed to free up more beds.

(Reports out of New York claim hospitals are being overrun with patients.)

Yet, Birx stands calmly before the American people at the nightly press briefings and reminds agenda-driven journalists of a little thing called facts, beseeching them to be more responsible in their reporting.

“There is no situation in the United States right now that warrants that kind of discussion,” she implored. “You can be thinking about it in a hospital… but to say to the American people, to make the implication that when they need a hospital bed it’s not going to be there, or when they need that ventilator it’s not going to be there, we don’t have evidence of that right now.”

Much more at the site - Tom compiled some of the more egregious tweets and comments from the media. None of these media responses cite facts, it is all hype and narrative. Must preserve the narrative... Disgusting.

From the London Daily Mail:

De Blasio says New Yorkers should be 'ready' for the city to stay closed until the end of MAY and predicts 'more than half' of the 8.6million population will become infected with coronavirus
Mayor Bill de Blasio said on Friday that people 'need to be ready' for New York staying in lockdown until the end of May as he gave the grave prediction that at least half of the city would become infected by coronavirus.

Speaking on Good Morning America as the US topped the world's COVID-19 hotspots with 86,000 infections, de Blasio was asked if the city would stay shuttered 'through May'.

He answered: 'I think we need to be ready for that,' then went on to slam President Trump's Easter deadline to reopen the country as something that gave 'false hope' to the nation.

Of course he is spreading FUD - you cannot control the proles when they are comfortable and happy. I hope the people of New York City wake up and realize that he is not good for them. He is only out for his elite buddies.

Talk about being a parasite on a carbuncle on the ass of the elite. From BizPac Review:

Kathy Griffin sticks to COVID-19 angle despite being sent home from hospital with abdominal infection
Comedian Kathy Griffin continued to dramatize her stint at a hospital coronavirus isolation ward despite being sent home with an abdominal infection.

Griffin bashed the Trump administration when she revealed she was in a hospital Wednesday but could not get tested for COVID-19 “because of CDC (Pence task force) restrictions.” Though the 59-year-old entertainer showed none of the coronavirus symptoms and was sent home with a different diagnosis, she took to Twitter to claim she “still has no idea” whether she tested positive or negative for the virus.

In a series of tweets Thursday, Griffin quoted from a Los Angeles Times article on her experience, which she unfolded on social media earlier that day.

“Kathy Griffin might have been exposed to the coronavirus. Or she might not have. After a recent trip to urgent care and the emergency room while gravely ill, the comic wasn’t able to get tested,” the tweet citing the Times story read.

Way to use a national emergency to spin publicity for yourself and your failing irrelevant career. She probably had some bad sushi and then suffered a panic attack.

Her 15 minutes should have been over a long time ago.

Without a doubt - capitalism

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Captain Obvious to the white courtesy phone please - Mark Cuban from FOX News:

Mark Cuban predicts 'we are truly going to see the best of capitalism' after coronavirus 'recession'
Dallas Mavericks owner and billionaire entrepreneur Mark Cuban joined the "Fox News Rundown" podcast Thursday to offer guidance to small businesses struggling through the coronavirus pandemic.

"They're terrified," Cuban said. "Business has dried up from doing great last month or two months ago to almost nothing. And that's terrifying to anybody who's ever started a business.

And more:

"I truly believe in American exceptionalism," he added. "There's no other country in the world that's going to be able to figure out like we can, we'll use this opportunity, we'll use the situation."

"If the American dream was not alive and well until this point, it just truly got ignited," Cuban concluded.

Striking a rare political tone, Cuban said the outbreak will serve as an example to those who supported socialism, and predicted a newfound entrepreneurial spirit that will "bring out the best of capitalism."

"We've had a taste of socialism right now ... giving money and redistributing wealth ... that's okay," he said. "But, I think we are truly going to see the best of capitalism when we come out of the other side, because this is where people are going to be entrepreneurial."

Capitalism is the only way to go. Period. Socialism has never ever worked. Period. Glad to see Cuban speaking truth to power.

COVID-19 common sense

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Some good thoughts on the Chinese Flu - all of the hype is showing to be just that, hype. From Real Clear Politics:

Dr. Birx: Coronavirus Data Doesn't Match The Doomsday Media Predictions

White House coronavirus task force member Dr. Deborah Birx warned the public not to panic when they hear about models and projections of the pandemic's spread.

"Models are models," she said. "When people start talking about 20% of a population getting infected, it's very scary, but we don't have data that matches that based on our experience."

She said the media should not "make the implication that when they need a hospital bed it's not going to be there, or a ventilator, it's not going to be there, we don't have evidence of that."

"It's our job collectively to assure the American people," she also said. "There is no model right now -- no reality on the ground where we can see that 60% to 70% of Americans are going to get infected in the next eight to 12 weeks. I want to be clear about that."

Much more at the site. The politicians are using this crisis as a way to advance their agenda. These a**holes need to be voted out of office ASAP.

And, as a reminder, the stock market at its most recent low point is STILL 20% higher than when President Trump took office. We are doing just fine.

Something about that morning coffee really brings a nice energy and clarity of thought to the first 6-8 hours of the day.

Went and got gas for this afternoon's driving and back home now to work on the usual projects. Overcast and spitting a bit of rain - nothing heavy and forecast only calls for 20% precip but the rest of the week looks a lot wetter with Monday being downright soggy.

Quick surf while the heater warms up the garage and then to work...

I mentioned previously that the sun is very quiet - this is also showing up in the Planetary K Index which is the radio output from our sun. Anything over 6 and we have a decent chance of aurora borealis at these lattitudes. Here is today's chart:

20200327-k-index.jpg

Zzzzzzzz... Nothing happening there. Glad I laid in another big bunch of firewood as it is going to be colder than normal for a long long time.

Last year, we set a record for sunspots that was last equaled in 1913. Sunspots are a good visual proxy for solar activity and the more of them, the hotter the sun and the warmer the Earth. This bears out as the Modern Warm Period started around 1914 or so. It peaked in the 1970's and Earth starting to really cool off now.

Last year, 77% of the days had no sunspots. Today, 2020 just hit the very same number. We had a flurry of spots at the beginning of the year but there have been very few since. Today, we tie the 2019 and the 1913 records.

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Th-th-th-th-th-that's all folks

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Sleepy - room is nice and warm and the bed is calling me. A bit of YouTube and that is it for me for the day.

...a careful management of appearences. From behind the curtain of New York State, the Governor lies to his constituents. From Vice:

Cuomo's Prison Workers Say They're Not Actually Making Hand Sanitizer
On March 9, New York governor Andrew Cuomo announced a measure to fight “egregious” price-gouging: an initiative to produce 100,000 gallons of New York State-produced hand sanitizer every week, to be distributed for free to needy institutions like schools, government agencies, prisons, and the MTA.

“We are problem solvers, state of New York, Empire State, progressive capital of the nation,” Cuomo said during a press conference, before opening a navy curtain and literally unveiling jugs of the “NYS Clean”-branded sanitizer, “made conveniently by the state of New York.”

But according to workers at Great Meadow Correctional Facility in Comstock, New York where the hand sanitizer is being “made,” as well as a spokesperson for the prison system, they are doing nothing more than taking existing hand sanitizer and rebottling it into packaging labeled NYS Clean.

Typical Democrat - they do something that sounds good instead of doing something that actually does good. Not able to actually make the sanitizer? How about making masks? Or just STFU and stop trying to hog the front page.

Transformative times in America

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Copied in full from the puppy-blender himself:

SOMETHING THAT INSTAPUNDIT COMMENTER BART HALL POSTED ON FACEBOOK:

Truckers are saying “fuck the log rules, I’m hauling” and they’re getting supplies to the stores. People are stocking the shelves all night and letting old people shop first. Folks are buying meals for truckers, who (obviously) can’t go through the drive-ups. Asking ’em what they want, then buying it for them.

Carnival Cruise Line has told Trump “We can match those big Navy Hospital ships with some fully staffed cruise ships”.

GM and Ford have said “hold our cars and watch this — we can make ventilators where we were just making car parts, starting next week” — by re-engineering seat ventilators which their engineers hacked together for a new purpose. In under a week.

In a project with which I’m loosely associated, a very-effective agricultural disease-control agent was re-purposed and re-labeled specifically for Corona-virus control by the FDA and EPA in under ten days, from initial request to distribution.

Restaurants and schools have said, “we’ve got kitchens and staff; we can feed the poor kids who used have school lunch.”

NBA basketball players have said, “Hold our basketballs while we write checks to pay the arena staff.”

Construction companies are saying, “Here are some high-end masks for medical staff and doctors”.

Distilleries are making sanitizer out of distilling “heads and tails” which are normally discarded. Nasty shit to drink, but effective sanitizer.

People are tipping grocery check-out clerks and thanking them for taking the risk.

Local, state, and county governments are taking control of everything the feds cannot do. Some are doing it wrong, but for the first time in decades … they’re doing it. Federalism is re-emerging, and the smallest unit of government is the individual and the family. This, too, is re-emerging after decades of dormancy.

As Japanese Admiral Isokuru Yamamoto said, after Pearl Harbor … “I fear all we have done is to awaken a sleeping giant and fill him with a terrible resolve.”

I sense this has just happened. We have a wonderful country, the greatest single force for good in all human history. We have closed our borders, with good reason, yet we have top medical people now assisting North Korea in their response to the virus.

Many things have been re-set, and will never be the same.

By microbiological accident, we are living in profoundly transformative historical times.

Indeed we are.

And be sure to check out the 300+ comments - some very heartening stories there. These are not the elites in Hollywood or Washington. These are us. We The People. This is our Nation and we are talking it back.

Dinner time

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Really wish I could go out for some Chinese and sit and read while I eat my noodles. Do not like having my routines broken - I get grumpy...

Done for the day - somewhat productive. Got some paperwork that needs to be done but will get that started tomorrow. Grocery driving tomorrow afternoon.

Some serious horsepower

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I have participated in online computing for a number of projects dating back to the original SETI@home. I was managing a large test lab at MSFT and with my boss' permission, up to 1,000 computers were spending their time processing the telescope data.

This is fascinating - from Anand Tech:

Folding@Home Reaches Exascale: 1,500,000,000,000,000,000 Operations Per Second for COVID-19
Folding@home has announced that cumulative compute performance of systems participating in the project has exceeded 1.5 ExaFLOPS, or 1,500,000,000,000,000,000 floating point operations per second. The level of performance currently available from Folding@home participants is by an order of magnitude higher than that of the world’s most powerful supercomputer.

Right now, cumulative performance of active CPUs and GPUs (which have returned Work Units within the last 50 days) participating in the Folding@home project exceeds 1,5 ExaFLOPS, which is 10 times faster than performance of IBM’s Summit supercomputer benchmarked for 148.6 PetaFLOPS.

Ho. Li. Crap. That is a lot of power. Most modest computers will have several "cores" or separate processors housed in one chip sharing a pool of memory and resources. This machine I use for email, surfing, etc... has four cores. Still, they have enrolled 4.63 Million cores. A wonderful use of resources and an outpouring of generosity from computer users everywhere.

America at work - Harbor Freight

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You can joke about them for their cheap tools but Harbor Freight sells a decent product and they are a well run company. Without hogging the media spotlight, they have been doing some really good work as explained by this letter from Eric Smidt, the Founder and Owner:

Hospital Donation Update
On behalf of all of us at Harbor Freight, I want to thank our customers and all of the amazing hospitals who requested donations of personal protective equipment (PPE). The number of requests we received was overwhelming: over 13,000 applications from hospitals and more than 43,000 email recommendations from customers. I only wish we had enough PPE for every one of these hospitals and all of their courageous medical professionals caring for COVID-19 patients under the most difficult circumstances.

The immediate need for PPE is beyond alarming. We hope manufacturers, suppliers and other businesses across the country with the ability to donate PPE will do whatever it takes to help.

Over the next several days, we will be shipping more than 44 million pairs of nitrile gloves and hundreds of thousands of masks and face shields to hospitals in over 1,000 communities that our stores serve.

We are deeply grateful for the enormous efforts of those caring for those inflicted with COVID-19 and for everyone fighting to limit its spread. The days ahead will be challenging, but together we will get through this fight.

With gratitude and best wishes for your health and safety,

No screaming publicity, just a quiet effort to do what is right and get on with life. I wonder what the media elite in California are doing? Photo ops?

Not surprising at all and...

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I am sure that the mainstream media will have this as their feature story for the next three weeks or so - NOT

From the United States Department of Justice:

Nicolás Maduro Moros and 14 Current and Former Venezuelan Officials Charged with Narco-Terrorism, Corruption, Drug Trafficking and Other Criminal Charges
Former President of Venezuela Nicolás Maduro Moros, Venezuela’s vice president for the economy, Venezuela’s Minister of Defense, and Venezuela’s Chief Supreme Court Justice are among those charged in New York City; Washington, DC; and Miami, along with current and former Venezuelan government officials as well as two Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia (FARC) leaders, announced U.S. Attorney General William P. Barr, U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman of the Southern District of New York, U.S. Attorney Ariana Fajardo Orshan of the Southern District of Florida, Assistant Attorney General Brian A. Benczkowski of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, Acting Administrator Uttam Dhillon of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Acting Executive Associate Director Alysa D. Erichs of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).

“The Venezuelan regime, once led by Nicolás Maduro Moros, remains plagued by criminality and corruption,” said Attorney General Barr. “For more than 20 years, Maduro and a number of high-ranking colleagues allegedly conspired with the FARC, causing tons of cocaine to enter and devastate American communities. Today’s announcement is focused on rooting out the extensive corruption within the Venezuelan government – a system constructed and controlled to enrich those at the highest levels of the government. The United States will not allow these corrupt Venezuelan officials to use the U.S. banking system to move their illicit proceeds from South America nor further their criminal schemes.”

“Today we announce criminal charges against Nicolás Maduro Moros for running, together with his top lieutenants, a narco-terrorism partnership with the FARC for the past 20 years,” said U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman. “The scope and magnitude of the drug trafficking alleged was made possible only because Maduro and others corrupted the institutions of Venezuela and provided political and military protection for the rampant narco-terrorism crimes described in our charges. As alleged, Maduro and the other defendants expressly intended to flood the United States with cocaine in order to undermine the health and wellbeing of our nation. Maduro very deliberately deployed cocaine as a weapon. While Maduro and other cartel members held lofty titles in Venezuela’s political and military leadership, the conduct described in the Indictment wasn’t statecraft or service to the Venezuelan people. As alleged, the defendants betrayed the Venezuelan people and corrupted Venezuelan institutions to line their pockets with drug money.”

Much more at the site - it will be interesting when the other shoe drops - the press release goes on to say that this money is being laundered through banks and real estate dealings in Florida. The next year or so will be a lot of fun to see. A lot of really clueless celebrities (the top ten) really liked Chavez and what he did for the poor people in Venezuela. Talk about delusional - there is a propaganda tool called a Potemkin Village. It worked for the brain-dead elite back in the 1780's and it still works to this day.

Another casualty of COVID-19

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Our roads - from the WA State Dept. of Transportation:

SR 20 - North Cascades Highway
On March 26, Secretary of Transportation Roger Millar suspended most maintenance work due to COVID-19 safety concerns, and implemented an “Essential Maintenance” approach to further comply with the state’s Stay Home, Stay Healthy order to safeguard public health. Under these guidelines, we have paused most maintenance across the state, including work to reopen the North Cascades Highway. Similar work pauses are occurring on Cayuse and Chinook Passes.

This highway remains a valuable route for the movement of goods as an alternative evacuation route in the case of natural disaster. A date to return to normal maintenance work has not yet been determined.

With the cooling climate, it will be a lot longer until the passes open. There is still I-90 which is kept open year-around but, SR20 is much closer and a much nicer drive.

See the difference - part two

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Posted part one earlier this morning - here is part two:

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Sweet desk lamp

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The maker doesn't give any more information (processor, brand of LED strip or source code) but should not be too hard to replicate:

I love interesting lamps and lighting - always have.

Oh... THOSE masks...

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Service Employees Union International - SEIU - in the news and probably not the way they want. Two items:

And then this story from the San Francisco NBC affiliate:

Union Locates 39 Million N95 Masks for Healthcare Workers, Local Governments
Service Employees International Union United Healthcare Workers West announced Thursday that it located 39 million N95 masks and will make them available to state and local governments and health care systems that are fighting the novel coronavirus outbreak.

Fscking hypocrites - they just "found" them.

Lunch break

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Music room is starting to look good. My main synthesizers are still at the farm so planning a trip up there this next week for a day or two. Specifically making sure that the keyboards I have down here are not hooked up yet - I would spend more time playing them than getting the rest of the stuff set up. I know myself too well...

Surf for a bit - making a sandwich for lunch.

Overcast this morning

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Was supposed to be partly sunny today but the latest forecast is for clouds all day and rain for the next couple of days. Great time to be working indoors.

Coffee first - a man has his priorities.

See the difference

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Two groups of people - the distinction has been made very clear by the Chinese Flu:

20200326-essential.jpg

Tip of the hat to c w swanson at Daily Timewaster.

Gorgeous evening

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Cleared up - supposed to be clear and cold tonight but rain is forecast to return in a day or two.

About ready to sit down to dinner - Plan-B seems to be working for getting the hard disk configured. Using a 3rd party utility.

A turning of the tides

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Been listening to some talk radio and people who are calling in are very very pissed at what is happening in Congress right now. It feels a lot like the beginnings of the TEA Party from 2009. Next couple of months will be very interesting - the 2020 election is only 223 days from now. It will be here in a heartbeat.

Back home again

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Delivered the groceries and ran a few errands while I was out.

Heating up some beef stew for tonight - salad and some nice crusty bread and that is a good dinner.

Dealing with one computer that will not see a disk drive - Windows Disk Configure sees it, the machine's BIOS sees it, my Linux Rescue Thumb Drive sees it. The SSD install (clone) utility does not. All drivers and firmware have been upgraded so it is not that. Digging out some SATA cables and see if it might be that.

But of course

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We must give aid to the disadvantaged people - from America's Newspaper of Record:

Democrats Demand Stimulus Bill Include Reparations For Transgender Native Americans Affected By Climate Change
Democratic lawmakers are blocking the stimulus bill proposed in Congress, slamming their Republican colleagues for refusing to include reparations for transgender Native Americans affected by climate change.

"If we aren't handing billions of dollars to Native Americans with gender dysphoria displaced by our current climate emergency, then what are we even doing here?" shouted Chuck Schumer in a scathing speech outside the Capitol Building. "The American people are waiting for us to pass this bill, and the evil Republicans are stubbornly insisting we don't earmark billions for our transgender indigenous brothers and sisters and others."

The Democrats' version of the bill would set aside $500 billion to fund gender reassignment surgeries and reparations for any indigenous person who has been forced to move thanks to the climate emergency.

"Millions will die if we do not get this added to the bill," Nancy Pelosi warned gravely. "American families are hurting, yes, but they need to wait a while longer so we can get all our pet projects added to the bill."

More at the site.

Working in the music room today

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Putting together some equipment racks and my editing desk

Just wow - San Francisco two days ago

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Gorgeous drone photography from Dan Denegre (Space Race Studio):

Fun time in the big city - part two

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I had linked to something Peter Grant wrote yesterday: A very nice side effect to the Chinese Flu

Today, he expands on it and offers some very good advice for people still stuck in large cities.

The grasshoppers are already coming after the ants
A few days ago, I noted:

Another big problem is the unintended consequences of government policies to address the pandemic.  For example, many local and state governments are releasing lower-level inmates from prisons, to alleviate overcrowding and forestall the spread of COVID-19 in such close quarters.  That's a legitimate health objective . . . but it disregards public safety issues.  Those inmates are going to have to start earning a living on the street again, just when almost all businesses have been shut down under quarantine.  What are they going to do?  You know as well as I what they're going to do - they're going to revert to a life of crime.  I expect a massive increase in petty crime, and perhaps more serious offenses as well, as the newly released try to get money any way they can.  Even worse, some jurisdictions - for example, St. Paul,   Fort Worth,   Philadelphia,   San Francisco, etc. - are no longer giving priority to lower-level offenses.  They might as well issue licenses to criminals to commit them!  It's no wonder panicking people are trying to get their hands on guns, by hook or by crook.  The odds are pretty good that some of them will need them, sooner rather than later.

Peter continues to set the stage and has these observations:

To summarize it briefly, many of those who are accustomed to buying drugs with the proceeds of panhandling, begging and minor crime are finding their usual fields of endeavor have become barren.  With most people staying at home, there aren't nearly as many drivers, pedestrians, shoppers, etc. to approach for money;  and many stores are also closed, making shoplifting of higher-value items almost impossible.  Supermarkets are overcrowded and under-stocked, and besides, stealing a jar of mayonnaise or a tin of peas isn't exactly going to bring in a lot of money.  Therefore, many of the aforementioned drug buyers are turning to residential and property crimes to fund their habit.  They're snatching anything left out in gardens;  ringing doorbells and aggressively begging for - or, rather, demanding - money;  stealing parcels that are delivered on doorsteps and left unattended;  and breaking into cars parked on the street, looking for valuables left inside them.  There are also reports of threats of violence to homeowners and others who try to stop them.

The gangs who have, until now, made a living from selling drugs in the "hood" are also hurting, because (as noted yesterday) there aren't as many drugs available to sell.  They're trying to compensate by increasing their prices - but, as noted above, many of their regular clients can't afford even their regular prices any longer.  Other buyers are taking the quarantine seriously, and no longer venturing into the shadier parts of town to buy drugs.  Therefore, the gangs are also turning to other forms of crime to make up the shortfall in their income.  Many of those newly released from prison, most of whom have no other way to make a living, are said to be doing the same.>

Finally, with the closure of schools, large numbers of urban youth are wandering the streets.  They don't have a stable nuclear family to keep them at home, and the one parent they have (if they're lucky) doesn't have enough money to buy them what they want in the way of entertainment.  They also have no pocket-money or other discretionary income.  Result?  They're looking for cash any way they can get it.  Shoplifting in some cities is becoming endemic, with "flash mobs" of kids looking for whatever they can score;  and even closed stores are being broken into.

Much more at the site. Stay aware. Stay safe.

When people ask me about why I prepare, I say: "It is not IF, it is WHEN"
We are seeing a very very mild WHEN right now - things could be a lot worse.

Cute tee-shirt

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I would wear this if I had one:

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From Washington Examiner:

Mike Rowe: Big business response to the coronavirus will show 'what capitalism is really all about'
Television star and businessman Mike Rowe predicted a nationwide outbreak of the coronavirus will help make the case for capitalism.

“We’re going to see what capitalism is really all about,” Rowe said Monday on Fox & Friends. “When we have these big conversations about the direction the country is headed and what direction the country ought to be headed ... this is a chance, unlike anything I’ve ever seen, for corporate America to step up and do what the government simply can’t do."

A central government can not bail out its population. It is the large corporations that have the flexibility to react quickly enough. We see time and again where governments "nationalize" various industries and it has never ever worked. See Cuba, China, Russia, Venezuela, etc...

We can dream; can't we?

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Tip of the hat to Don Surber for the link to this tweet:

An editorial from the New York Times:

Trump to New York: Drop Dead
Untold thousands will likely die, absent federal intervention. And it needs to happen this instant. Why won’t the president help?

So it’s essentially come to this: President Trump is treating each of our 50 states as individual contestants on “The Apprentice” — pitting them against one another for scarce resources, daring them to duke it out — rather than mobilizing a unified national response to a pandemic.

If that’s the case, this is the episode where New York loses. The coronavirus is whipping through the state, especially New York City, at a terrifying rate. We need personnel, ventilators and personal protective equipment, stat.

But Trump’s response has been the same as President Gerald Ford’s in 1975, when our city, faltering on the brink of insolvency, begged Washington for help and was brutally rebuffed, a moment forever enshrined in The Daily News’s headline “FORD TO CITY: DROP DEAD.”

Now Trump is telling us the same. Literally.

Excuse me - there is nothing in the way our Federal Government is set up that says that one City or one State is "owed" preferential treatment at the expense of everyone else. It is the job of the individual states to legislate and care for their constituents and it is the job of the Federal Government to provide common defense, a buffer of tax monies, large intra-state projects, etc...

There have already been cases brought to light where New York dropped the ball in preparing for this event and there will probably be quite the butcher's bill when this is all over. They failed to prepare and they are expecting Uncle Sam to bail them out. Does not work that way - ask New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina.

We are seeing the end-game of Democrat rule - kick the can down the road and no accountability for the bureaucrats.

Doctor's advice

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From Mostly Cajun:

DOCTOR’S ADVICE
Heard a Doctor on TV saying in this time of Coronavirus staying at home we should focus on inner peace. To achieve this we should always finish things we start and we all could use more calm in our lives.

I looked through my house to find things I’d started and hadn’t finished, so I finished off a bottle of Merlot, a bottle of Chardonnay, a bodle of Baileys, a butle of wum, tha mainder of me valiumun srciptuns, an a box a chocletz. Yu haf no idr how blumin fablus I feel rite now.

Sned this to all who need inner peece. An telum u luvum. And two hash yer wands.

stafe day avrybobby!!!

Heh...

Some numbers from this article at Vox by way of Bellingham geologist Dan McShane:

How we know ending social distancing will lead to more deaths, in one chart
People will die if we end social distancing early. This chart proves it.
President Donald Trump already wants to pull back social distancing policies and guidances implemented in response to the coronavirus pandemic. But we know, based on the nation’s history with past outbreaks, what will happen if we do this too early: People will die.

In 1918, the world was ravaged by a horrible flu pandemic, which was linked to as many as 100 million deaths globally and about 675,000 deaths in the US. In response, cities across America adopted a variety of social distancing measures to combat the pandemic. Based on several studies of the period, these measures worked to reduce the death toll overall.

But many cities, also worried about the effects of social distancing on normal life and the economy, pulled back their social distancing efforts prematurely. When they did, they saw flu cases — and deaths — rise again.

Consider St. Louis. The city is now heralded as an example of how to do social distancing right because it took an aggressive and layered response to the flu pandemic early on. But as a 2007 study published in JAMA found, St. Louis in 1918 pulled back its social distancing efforts prematurely — and that led to a spike in deaths.

Here’s how that looks in chart form, with the line chart representing excess flu deaths and the black and gray bars below showing when social distancing measures were in place. The highest peak comes after social distancing measures were lifted, with the death rate falling only after they were reinstituted.

The usual obligatory Trump bashing in the first paragraph - President Trump wants to restore businesses sometime around Easter, he has said nothing about stopping the basic prophylactic measures - hand washing, social distancing, etc... Here is the chart:

20200325-social.jpg

Right there in black and white - you are looking at the black bars at the bottom for School closure and Public gathering ban. They relaxed these measures mid-November and saw a large uptick in deaths. The paper also:

Analyzing data from 43 cities, the JAMA study found this pattern repeatedly across the country. Howard Markel, an author of the study and the director of the University of Michigan’s Center for the History of Medicine, described the results as a bunch of “double-humped epi curves” — officials instituted social distancing measures, saw flu cases fall, then pulled back the measures and saw flu cases rise again.

Notably, the second rise in deaths only appeared when cities removed social distancing measures, the JAMA study found: “Among the 43 cities, we found no example of a city that had a second peak of influenza while the first set of nonpharmaceutical interventions were still in effect.”

Common sense - you can't catch it if it can't reach you. Good basic science.

The N95 mask - a bit of history

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The N95 mask has a fascinating and long history - from Fast Company:

The untold origin story of the N95 mask
The most important design object of our time was more than a century in the making
It’s hard to think of a symbol of COVID-19 more fraught than the N95 respirator. The mask fits tightly around the face and is capable of filtering 95% of airborne particles, such as viruses, from the air, which other protective equipment (such as surgical masks) can’t do. It’s a life-saving device that is now in dangerously short supply. As such, it has come to represent the extreme challenges of the global response to COVID-19.

How did a flimsy polymer cup become the most significant health device of the 21st century? It all started in 1910 with a little-known doctor who wanted to save the world from one of the worst diseases ever known.

The genesis was a virulent illness in 1950 in Manchuria - a Chinese doctor came up with a prototype and showed it to someone:

The Chinese Imperial Court brought in a doctor named Lien-teh Wu to head its efforts. He was born in Panang and studied medicine at Cambridge. Wu was young, and he spoke lousy Mandarin. In a plague that quickly attracted international attention and doctors from around the world, he was “completely unimportant,” according to Lynteris. But after conducting an autopsy on one of the victims, Wu determined that the plague was not spread by fleas, as many suspected, but through the air.

Expanding upon the surgery masks he’d seen in the West, Wu developed a heartier mask from gauze and cotton, which wrapped securely around one’s face and added several layers of cloth to filter inhalations. His invention was a breakthrough, but some doctors still doubted its efficacy.

“There’s a famous incident. He’s confronted by a famous old hand in the region, a French doctor [Gérald Mesny] . . . and Wu explains to the French doctor his theory that plague is pneumonic and airborne,” Lynteris says. “And the French guy humiliates him . . . and in very racist terms says, ‘What can we expect from a Chinaman?’ And to prove this point, [Mesny] goes and attends the sick in a plague hospital without wearing Wu’s mask, and he dies in two days with plague.”

Heh - showed the Frenchman a thing or two...

Lynteris is Christos Lynteris - a senior lecturer at the Department of Social Anthropology at the University of St. Andrews and an expert in medical mask history. Much more at the site - some interesting reading for a quiet day at home.

Rain rain go away

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Pretty hard rain this morning - supposed to clear up later today.

Coffee in a few minutes - this evening is when all non-essential businesses in WA State have to shut down by order of our Governor. There is a large body of evedence that this can cause more problems than just keeping things open. After all, for all the hype and panic, the Chinese Flu is not widespread and it is not that dangerous. The common flu kills way more people and nothing is being done about that.

And dinner - lentil soup

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Back to eating veges again - pot of lentil soup with carrots, parsnips & assorted stuff found in the fridge. Salad with lemon juice and olive oil for dressing. Good stuff...

Nice sunset - lots of muscular clouds in the sky - really pretty but the light is very flat. Nothing to photograph.

If this bitch gets re-elected, I have serious doubts about the legality of the California election process. From The Gateway Pundit:

“I Don’t Care! I Don’t Care! I Don’t Care!” Pelosi Snaps at CNN’s Dana Bash For Asking About Trump’s Plans to Put America Back to Work (VIDEO)

She is well past her sell-by date. The video is nothing surprising - hope it gets wide press.

Never trust anything from China

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Even their food - after all, one hour later and you are hungry again (rimshot). From Steven Green at PJ Media:

Communist Quality Control: Beijing Sends 150,000 Wuhan Virus Testing Kits to Prague, 80% Fail
The Communist thugs in charge of China have been trying to have it two ways on coronavirus: Playing the aggrieved victim of racism/biological-warfare/whatever, and acting like the international bigshot who, having solved the crisis at home, is now eager to help other nations around the world.

Beijing's antics are making everything worse everywhere, this time in the Czech Republic.

The Czech newspaper Irozhlas (I-Radio) reports that the bigshots in Beijing sent 150,000 coronavirus rapid testing kits to Czechia which return false results up to 80% of the time.

I do buy some of their tools but with the understanding that the printed specifications are a pipe dream and there is usually ten hours or more to be spent getting it to where it works OK. Cheap which on my budget is a good thing - I have more time than money - still... They could be doing a lot better for the same cost.

A failed city living off the tourist dollar. All show and no substance. From NBC News:

New Orleans is an epicenter of coronavirus. Mardi Gras could be to blame, doctors say.
Health experts say it's no surprise that New Orleans is the epicenter of the coronavirus crisis in hard-hit Louisiana, after over a million people flocked to the city to celebrate Carnival for more than a month, culminating in Mardi Gras at the end of February.

Gov. John Bel Edwards on Tuesday requested a Major Disaster Declaration for the state as the number of cases rose to 1,388 cases in 43 of Louisiana’s 64 parishes, according to the state's health department.

At least 46 people have died.

“It is still impossible to know exactly how long the COVID-19 pandemic will impact Louisiana, but what we do know is that we have more cases per capita than every state, except for New York and Washington," Edwards said Tuesday. On Sunday, he issued a stay at home order in an effort to slow the rapid rise of cases.

While some parishes appear to be unaffected, Edwards said testing just hadn't caught up. "We shouldn't delude ourselves. It's in every single parish," he said.

And the Mardi Gras crowd tends to be the young 20-30's - most likely to be asymptomatic while still being highly contagious. Perfect for bringing home to Mom and Dad.

Elder health in Italy

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Italy is one of the epicenters of COVID-19 with a higher than usual percentage of fatalities. They have a higher than usual number of elderly people so that explains part of it - this is borne out in this paper from August 2019 looking at the Influenza season of 2013/14 and 2016/17 - from the International Journal of Infectious Diseases:

Investigating the impact of influenza on excess mortality in all ages in Italy during recent seasons (2013/14–2016/17 seasons)
Highlights

    • In the winter seasons from 2013/14 to 2016/17, an estimated average of 5,290,000 ILI cases occurred in Italy, corresponding to an incidence of 9%.
    • More than 68,000 deaths attributable to flu epidemics were estimated in the study period.
    • Italy showed a higher influenza attributable excess mortality compared to other European countries. especially in the elderly.

A lot more at the site. Something to consider when looking at the overall mortality of the Chinese Flu.

And, something to consider if looking at retiring to Italy - medical care does not seem to be oriented towards us old farts.

He announced it today - from The People's Cube:

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Joe Biden picks Coronavirus as his 2020 running mate
Whom would Joe Biden choose as his running mate? This question loomed ever since Biden became the apparent 2020 Democratic presidential nominee, and it was finally answered today.

Biden and his advisors were looking for a candidate with sufficient name recognition and the ability to bring down Donald Trump's presidency by canceling his crowded rallies and reducing his voter base. And the only candidate who checked all those boxes happened to be Coronavirus. "We may differ on some tactics, but our strategic goals and our vision for the country are the same," Biden told reporters.

Of course, there had been tremendous pressure to choose a woman for that spot. Stacey Abrams, the Governor of Georgia in exile, was rumored to be an obvious choice. Others dropped names like Hillary Clinton or Michelle Obama. After all the Democratic Party's support for women's marches, not having a woman on the ticket in 2020 would have looked odd.

That hurdle, however, was lifted when scientists declared Coronavirus to be a radical feminist. "Viruses have evolved to hit men hard but go easy on women, and this makes the virus a natural women's ally," said Biden's campaign spokeswoman. "They reproduce just like us, and they care not to hurt the hosts who can reproduce and create more hosts for viruses. In our book, Coronavirus matches the description of a powerful minority woman who can do all the things Stacey Abrams would do, plus much more. Her pronouns are now 'she' and 'her' and misgendering her should really be a hate crime."

Many progressive women, including Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez who used to support Bernie Sanders, have now switched sides in favor of the Biden-Coronavirus presidential bid.

"Let's be honest," Ocasio-Cortez said. "We all know how frail Joe is, and that'll make Coronavirus the virtual leader of the free world for the next four to eight years. I am confident she will solve the Climate Change problem through a drastic reduction in world's population, bringing our carbon footprint to acceptable levels. It's the Green New Deal I can believe in."

Her sentiment was echoed by the renown climate activist Greta Thunberg. "Getting rid of old people who stole my childhood? Cool!" Thunberg told reporters at her home on a school day.

Cecile Richards, the former head of Planned Parenthood for America, gave Coronavirus a ringing endorsement. "I wanted to see a woman on this ticket who shares Planned Parenthood's goals and commitments, and Coronavirus makes it an easy choice," she said.

Coronavirus did not respond to requests for comment.

Sometimes, life satirizes itself.

And it's official

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CERT got called up to help at the local food bank.

Already delivering groceries for the local community center tomorrow but will be there Thursday.

Nice to see that our community has so many people willing to help when the shit hits the fan.

New kit from LEGO

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Timely:

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And to work

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Done with lunch. Time to get my butt in gear - feeling nappish though.

Actually thinking of building a fire - that cold outside.

Now this is going to work out well

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From Sacramento, CA station KCRA:

CA to use hotels to shelter homeless during amid COVID-19 risks
Gov. Gavin Newsom announced his plans at a press conference Saturday evening to shelter the homeless during the COVID-19 outbreak.

There are an estimated 108,000 homeless people in the state of California, according to the governor's office. Newsom said the state has over 2,400 hotel rooms secured, with 1,900 beds alone in San Diego County. Seven counties across the state have beds secured.

"We have made it clear we are prioritizing the most vulnerable Californians. We’ve made clear our most vulnerable Californians include the homeless," Newsom said.

No word as to who will pay the cost of disinfecting the rooms and replacing the copper wiring and plumbing.

Excerpted from a longer post written by Peter Grant:

...I developed contacts with members of the FBI, US Marshals Service, and other agencies that I've maintained to this day. I'm hearing interesting things from them about the supply of illegal drugs in our major metropolitan areas. Basically, that supply is being cut off at the knees by the slowdown in world trade. I hadn't realized how much the drug trade was dependent upon Chinese chemicals and precursor materials to process coca leaves into cocaine, or to make methamphetamine or heroin. Also, apparently most of the synthetic marijuana (a.k.a. "spice") on the market comes from China, or is made with ingredients supplied from there.

This is apparently resulting in a severe shortage of illegal narcotics on the street in many cities. I'm told that drug addicts (particularly among the homeless) in cities like San Francisco, Los Angeles and Portland are finding it very difficult to locate their next "fix", and to afford it if and when they do, because the shortage has led to increased prices. There doesn't appear to be any relief in sight in the short term, and not much in the medium term. One of my contacts is expecting unrest among the homeless community, including a significant increase in violence, as desperate addicts try to get drugs any way they can. He says he won't be surprised if it leads to more general criminal violence - highly aggressive panhandling (with attacks if the victim won't offer assistance), robberies, assaults, etc. He also reports growing disputes between gangs who have drugs to sell, and those who don't, leading to increased conflicts among criminals. Drugs have allegedly been hijacked in transit or stolen from rival dealers on the street, and "turf wars" are said to be increasing. The term "public service homicides" may have been bandied about . . .

He advises heightened situational awareness if travelling in urban areas. Always good advice.

He also links to this article at Vice:

Coronavirus Is Leading to Shortages of Fentanyl And Meth
Disruptions to global supply chains due to the spread of the coronavirus is hampering production of methamphetamine and fentanyl by Mexico’s cartels, according to VICE sources.

Sinaloa cartel operatives in Mexico told VICE this week that importing the chemical precursors they need to make methamphetamine and illicit fentanyl has become harder and more complicated, which is creating a shortage and pushing up prices.

Not a bad problem to have.

BOHICA

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Bohica - has a nice Carribean ring to it. Actually, an acronym for the following: Bend Over, Here It Comes Again. From India's english language site NEWS18:

Hantavirus Kills Man in China; Here's What You Should Know About This Disease
At the time when the world is grappling with coronavirus, other diseases like swine flu and bird flu have also started troubling a few countries. One such disease which is rearing its head in China, which is still battling coronavirus, is hantavirus.

On Twitter, China’s Global Times wrote that one man in the country had tested positive for hantavirus. According to the state media, the man, a resident of Yunnan Province, died on a bus while travelling to Shandong Province for work on Monday.

Carried by rodents - there are several dozen cases reported in the US every year so not common but not unusual.

Yawn - Greta? Anyone I know?

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From The Gateway Pundit:

Greta Thunberg Says She Likely Has Coronavirus After Traveling Around Central Europe
Little Greta Thunberg has been pretty quiet lately. Perhaps her puppet masters have deemed her dispensable and no longer have a use for her. She’s turned into more of a D-rate instagram figure now, and she’s used that platform to announce that she likely has Covid 19, due to a recent trip across Europe she took with her equally D-rate actor father, Svante.

Trying to claw her way back into the limelight. Her "statement" is at the link. Like I said, yawn.

Back home again

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Coffee place is open for the duration - thank God for small favors...

Productive day - got food and supplies for the next week of quarantine.

Sitting down to lunch, surf for a bit and then to work in the garage. Cold today so have the space heater running while I eat.

Out for the day - coffee

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See if my favorite place is open. Back in a few hours.

Overcast - was raining earlier.

Sigh - mismanagement

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Our state governor just implemented a two-week quarantine. Nice way to kill small businesses. Talk about Kabuki theater...

Heading out today to do a little shopping - Home Depot, the metal store, hardware store. Get two weeks of project stuff laid in. Fine on basic foods - always have kept a couple weeks in reserve.

Now - if my coffee place is closed, I will be seriously ticked off...

And in other news - from the US Government's Centers for Disease Control:

CDC estimates that so far this season there have been at least 38 million flu illnesses, 390,000 hospitalizations and 23,000 deaths from flu.

And we are willfully tanking our economy over this? Some numbers:

  • 38,000,000 (38 million) people infected with the flu virus. 33,000 people infected with Wuhan Flu - this is 0.086 percent. A pittance. Statistical noise.
  • 23,000 deaths from the flu virus. 400 deaths from the Wuhan Flu - this is 1.73 percent. Still a pittance. Still statistical noise.

When we do more testing, the number of people infected with COVID-19 will rise simply because they have now been identified but that is only going to make the death rate go way down in proportion. Also, it is being reported that numbers from Italy are contaminated. Someone has a heart problem or diabetes and they die in a hospital? If they also have COVID-19, their deaths are being ascribed to the Wuhan Flu and not their underlying condition. Bad numbers.

A candidate for sainthood

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The author of Bulk Crap Uninstaller - a wonderful application (and very dangerous - it assumes that you know what the fsck you are doing).

I am cleaning off several computers here. For example, I had been using Pinnacle video editing software. It is OK but I moved up to Blackmagic DaVinci Resolve - much better. I uninstalled the Pinnacle application but there was a metric ton of cruft left over that I simply did not bother to take the time to root out and delete. BCU picked it up and got rid of it.

Same for a number of applications. Also, some uninstall routines require user intervention. BCU will schedule all of these at the beginning of the run so you can hang out, hit the ENTER key a couple of times and then go and do something else while the rest of your work is being done for you. I sent him $20 - well worth it.

Another casualty of COVID-19

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Whatcom County just cancelled the annual Ski to Sea race - from the website:

Ski to Sea Canceled
Updated 3/23/2020:
The 2020 Ski to Sea Race is officially canceled. Making the decision to interrupt the tradition of 46 years was difficult and painful but is the only responsible choice given the circumstances associated with COVID19.

I participated in it for six years doing amateur radio (road bike to canoe hand-off) - a lot of fun and some really great people. Makes sense to be safe - the insurance companies will be breathing a sigh of relief. Lots of sweaty people panting and rushing through a timing gate is not exactly a good quarantine procedure.

Very cool idea - Amazon

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They are busy with the panic buying. They are willing to give you a couple bucks if you can delay the shipping of your item. From their website:

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Great idea - helps everyone out.

To work

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Done with lunch and unpacking the car. Back to working in the garage.

Dump run and visiting the storage unit - bring home and take there. Same shit, different places.

Heh - Costco returns

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I was at Costco this morning as part of my errand run. Saw a sign saying that they will not allow returns on Toilet Paper, wipes, clorox, dried beans and rice.

Look for really cheap tp for your bunghole at garage sales next summer.

From his Twitter account:

Antoine Tucker is an ex-gangster and is currently running for Congress - AOCs district.

His platform looks really well thought out. I wish him well - he is up against the Democratic machine but he is on-point with an excellent message. If the people of NYC re-elect AOC, something is seriously wrong.

Profiting from panic - from National Review:

Dem Rep. Told Colleagues Coronavirus Bill Is ‘Tremendous Opportunity to Restructure Things to Fit Our Vision’
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., Calif.) worked to scupper the phase-three coronavirus relief package on Sunday after Majority Whip James Clyburn (D., S.C.) told caucus members last week that the bill was “a tremendous opportunity to restructure things to fit our vision.”

To channel my inner Greta: How Dare You

The disease has a name

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It is called Panic - a great examination of President Trump's strategy dealing with the Chinese Flu - from Don Surber:

Trump's end game on COVID-19

"Protecting Americans’ health also means fighting infectious diseases. We are coordinating with the Chinese government and working closely together on the corona virus outbreak in China. My administration will take all necessary steps to safeguard our citizens from this threat."
-- President Donald John Trump
State of the Union
February 4, 2020

What is President Donald John Trump's end game with COVID-19? He never engages in battle without winning the war first. From the moves he has made, we may be able to predict his end game.

Vox reported this weekend, "Top health officials first learned of the virus’s spread in China on January 3, US Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar said Friday. Throughout January and February, intelligence officials’ warnings became more and more urgent, according to the Post — and by early February, much of the Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the CIA’s intelligence reports were dedicated to warnings about COVID-19.

"All the while, Trump downplayed the virus publicly, telling the public the corona virus 'is very well under control in our country,' and suggesting warm weather would neutralize the threat the virus poses."

His first move was a restriction on travel to Red China on January 31. Red China and its agents in the United States labeled this racist and xenophobic, but the president gave cover to worried airlines to shut down flights to Wuhan and Beijing.

President Trump mentioned the virus briefly in the State of the Union but other than that, he did little publicly. I believe he was preparing for battle. His worse nightmare -- according to conventional wisdom in Washington -- was about to come true. The stock market tanked, a harbinger of what the American economy could do.

Turns out that in order for Doctors to be able to use chloroquine, they have to do... nothing...

FDA approval is not needed under the the Right To Try law that President Trump signed in May 2018

Again, something that completely turned the tables on how big pharma was done in the USA but passed without a ripple in the mainstream media. Now that it is needed, it is in place. Don also looks at some history:

To put this virus in perspective, let us look at what happened with the flu last winter.

The CDC reported, "CDC estimates that the burden of illness during the 2018–2019 season included an estimated 35.5 million people getting sick with influenza, 16.5 million people going to a health care provider for their illness, 490,600 hospitalizations, and 34,200 deaths from influenza."

Like I said - the disease is panic, not a virus.

Coffee time

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Heading out for my morning coffee.

Back in a bit
Back in a couple of hours - Costco, Home Depot and food coop run this morning.

Grocery delivery later this afternoon for the community center - popular service.

The silver lining - Chinese Flu

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The pandemic has a silver lining - from Town Hall:

The People Our Loser Elite Look Down Upon Are Saving Our Bacon
Here are some people who are useless, especially now: Performance artists, diversity consultants, magic crystal healers, sociology TAs, members of the mainstream media, and gender-unspecified entities who brew kale kombucha.

Here are some people who matter, especially now: Soldiers, nurses, truckers, cops, the guy who stocks the shelves at Ralphs, farmers, and that dude rebuilding your roof.

The Chinese Bat Soup Flu has certainly clarified some of the blurred lines between what is important and what is frivolous garbage. Yet, in a time when millions of Americans are at risk of dying as a direct result of ChiCom conspiracies and the bizarre need of its serfs to eat any weird thing that crawls or slithers within reach of their chopsticks, our useless elite is fixated on making sure we don’t hurt the feelz of the very people who stuck us in this predicament.

Our elite is full of self-important morons who contribute nothing but more dumb in a time when the only thing we have a surplus of is dumb. The real hero is the guy who trucks in a load of whole wheat bread, ribeyes, and low-priced cabernet to the Trader Joe’s, not the Prius-piloting sissy with a Maddow fetish who shops there. The people our elite laughed at, scoffed at, poked at, are the very people who are going to rescue us from the mess that same elite helped make.

Spot on - more at the site. I hope that the quasi-elites living their so-called normal lives in the cities will see this. That they will see the cracks in the progressives' carefully structured narrative and begin to explore for themselves - begin to think for themselves. Besides, we have milk and cookies - come and get to know us.

From his twitter account - he excoriates Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer:

CNN Reports

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Found over at My Pensieve - CNN is the fount of Fake News

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Once they established the narrative that America is The Great Satan, it became unable for them to back down. Now, anything that America offers has to be bad and detrimental to the Iranian people, government and culture. The mullahs have painted themselves into a corner. From the New York Times:

Iran Leader Refuses US Help, Citing Virus Conspiracy Theory
Iran's supreme leader refused U.S. assistance Sunday to fight the new coronavirus, citing an unfounded conspiracy theory claiming the virus could be man-made by America.

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei's comments come as Iran faces crushing U.S. sanctions blocking the country from selling its crude oil and accessing international financial markets.

But while Iranian civilian officials in recent days have increasingly criticized those sanctions, 80-year-old Khamenei instead chose to traffic in the same conspiracy theory increasingly used by Chinese officials about the new virus to deflect blame for the pandemic.

“I do not know how real this accusation is but when it exists, who in their right mind would trust you to bring them medication?" Khamenei said. "Possibly your medicine is a way to spread the virus more.”

"In their right mind" indeed - the people like Khamenei are just plain stupid. They fail to realize that their polarizing politics has no exit strategy. There is no graceful way for them to exit and move to a narrative based on truth. One day, their people are going to learn the truth and they will be pissed off. Mountains will fall. Life in the ninth century was brutal and short and these mullahs seek to perpetuate it - keep their constituency uneducated and afraid so they can remain in power. Pitiful.

Unexpected consequences - China Flu

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People are told to stay away from work / community activities / 3rd places. People are getting cabin fever. Hey - let's head to the coast.

Not a good idea - from Seattle station KOMO:

PNW coastal cities take matters into their own hands after thousands arrive on beaches
The Oregon Coast saw an influx visitors this past weekend, as people attempted to get out of their homes amid the coronavirus pandemic. Now, Warrenton, Manzanita, Astoria, Tillamook and Seaside have a message for visitors and tourists: vacate the area within 24 hours.

Towns up and down the Oregon coast, and the highways leading to them, were clogged with people and cars Saturday. The crowds stunned many coastal residents, who were angry that so many people seemed to defy social distancing guidelines by gathering together in parking lots and on beaches.

Warrenton has declared a state of emergency, that closes campgrounds and says that all tourists beyond those already booked to stay long term must leave. All hotels will be closed to new reservations and rental properties will be prohibited from accepting visitors during the public health emergency.

The City of Seaside has since also enacted a shutdown on all short-term lodging and city recreational areas which will be effective Monday, March 23.

Makes a lot of sense. It is not only bringing contagious people into isolated communities, these morons are also indulging in unbridled hamsterkauf and stripping the grocery stores. These stores do not have the same supply chains as stores in larger urban areas so the residents are being seriously hurt.

Every couple of years I go down to the Sea-Pac amateur radio conference in Seaside Oregon. Gorgeous little town - love it and some really great people once you get off the main drag.

Good boy!!!

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UPDATE: Issue with video - looking into it...

Sniffing out some 'black market' hand sanitizer:

I love the way that dogs turn around when they are on a scent. Kilo looks like a really sweet dog - very happy to be working for his best friend. From Fargo, ND and yes, there was a bit of pot in the same bag.

And done for the day

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Stew was good, nice fast computer for the ham radio stuff (watching Linux boot gives me whiplash - not bad for eight year old hardware) and the new light is very very bright - just what I wanted.

Surf and then some YouTube for a while.

Not zero productivity but approaching it. Got some work done in the garage this morning during my caffeine-fueled dissociative fugue state (my evil twin brother Skippy takes over) but since this afternoon's lunch break, I have done nothing to speak of. Thawing out some beef stew. Installing a new ceiling lamp in the bedroom and adding the memory to the ham radio computer. My accomplishments for the day.

The ceilings in the house are very low - old house - so pendant lamps are a constant danger. Picked up a nice bright and thin LED fixture. I like smaller task lights for ambient lighting so this will be used while cleaning and overall big stuff.

High tide now - the wind is picking up a bit and there is a 70% forecast for rain tonight with more for the next few days.

Not surprising - no long-term vision with that one. Thinking ahead to the next four years was all. From PJ Media:

It’s Barack Obama's Fault There’s a Shortage of N95 Respirator Masks
Last week Bloomberg published a story about the mask shortages and how that was making it difficult for hospital workers in various states to take alternative measures to help protect themselves during the coronavirus pandemic, including making masks out of office supplies, and taking masks home to bleach them so they can be reused. It paints a horrible picture of chaos in our nation’s hospitals, and attempts to blame the problem on the Trump administration, because the Strategic National Stockpile, which is maintained by the Health and Human Services Department, is insufficient for the current crisis.

Back in 2005, the Bush administration published the “National Strategy for Pandemic Influenza.” The strategy called for plans to distribute medical supplies from the national stockpile and to assist state and local efforts to handle an outbreak, but last month, Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar told Congress that the national stockpile of N95 respirator masks was 12 million—a mere fraction of the 1.7 billion masks government scientists estimated back in 2015 would be needed in the event of a severe flu outbreak.

How did we end up with such a low stockpile? It used to be much larger. What happened to it?

Buried several paragraphs deep in the aforementioned Bloomberg story we find out that “after the H1N1 influenza outbreak in 2009, which triggered a nationwide shortage of masks and caused a 2- to 3-year backlog orders for the N95 variety, the stockpile distributed about three-quarters of its inventory and didn’t build back the supply.”

That's right, the shortage of N95 masks can be traced back to the H1N1 (swine flu) pandemic of 2009... when Barack Obama was president.

Much more at the site - more links and corroborating data. Not Trump's fault. Obama's fault - kicking the can down the road as he did on so many things. This one happened to come back to bite him.

Only six weeks - New York City

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What a difference only 42 days makes - from New York City's radio Station 1010 WINS - February 09, 2020:

Thousands show support for China, Wuhan at NYC Lunar New Year parade
Signs of support for the Chinese city at the center of a global virus outbreak marked floats at the Lunar New Year parade in Manhattan's Chinatown.

Brightly colored puppets made their way through the New York City streets Sunday in front of crowds of onlookers.

A banner on one float read "Support Wuhan! Let's fight the virus together!"

Another urged, "Wuhan stay strong."

The coronavirus outbreak that started in China in December has killed more than 800 people and infected more than 37,000 people around the world.

No cases have been identified in New York City.

Boy, that escalated quickly. And of course, everyone's favorite Senator was there:

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This guy has never held a real job in his life. Born in 1950, went to law school and on graduation, entered into "public service". He has never bucked hay. Never made payroll. Never washed dishes when the dishwasher didn't show up. Never owned a business. Never learned a useful skill. And yet, he thinks that he represents the people of America.

People like him are not the solution, they are very much the problem.

Not just me - getting motivated

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Not into computer games but I do love them as they were the driving force behind cheap and good computer graphics. There may have been a total of 30,000 graphic artists worldwide clamering for decent displays and these were out there for $4K (in 1980 dollars). Throw in 300,000,000 computer gamers looking for the same thing and the price came down rapidly. Adam Smith'sinvisible hand of the market writ large for everyone to see. Capitalism at work.

Fast-forward to today with "work at home" entering the social lexicon - from Forbes:

Video Games Are Being Played At Record Levels As The Coronavirus Keeps People Indoors
With school closures, mandatory work-from-home policies and lockdowns taking place in the U.S. as a result of the Covid-19 coronavirus pandemic, gaming has seen higher engagement, especially over this past weekend.

    • Steam, the most popular digital PC gaming marketplace, reached new heights Sunday, drawing a record 20,313,451 concurrent users to the 16-year-old service, according to third-party database SteamDB.
    • Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, released by Steam-owner Valve in 2012, seems to be the top beneficiary of the increased engagement, breaking it's all-time peak on Sunday with 1,023,2290 concurrent players, topping its previous peak last month by a million, which itself beat the record set in April 2016.
    • Like other esports, CS:GO has had to cancel events due to the virus, particularly the Intel Extreme Masters in Katowice earlier this month, though its peak viewership reached over a million, making it one of the most watched tournaments in the esports' history.
    • Activision Blizzard's new free-to-play battle royale spinoff Call of Duty: Warzone, launched March 10 on PC, Xbox One and PlayStation 4, is also likely benefiting, drawing in a staggering 15 million in three days, besting the record 10 million in three days by last year's battle royale sensation Apex Legends.
    • These new heights follows similar effects of the virus on China and Italy: Telecom Italia's CEO told Bloomberg it saw a 70% increase in traffic over its landline network, with Fortnite playing a significant part, while Chinese live-streaming service Douyu experienced increased viewership of the country's most popular games, according to market analyst Niko Partners.
    • While gaming was considered "recession proof" during the 2008 market crash, stocks aren't immune to the current historic drops: software developers like Activision Blizzard are facing a 9% decrease in price year-to-date, while hardware companies that rely on Chinese manufacturing like Nintendo are seeing bigger drops of 24%.

What To Watch For: If these records keep rising as the closings and lockdowns continue. Arriving this week is Nintendo's long-awaited Animal Crossing: New Horizons for the Switch console, a relaxing "life-simulator" that's set to have a big day with many fans not-so-jokingly asking Nintendo to launch early.

Work at home... Yeah... Right... At least I am honest about sitting here surfing, gazing out at the ocean and the mountains and listening to old liturgical music.

Hard to get motivated

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Thinking about getting back to work but sitting here looking out the window at the ocean and the Olympic Mountains in the distance peeking through the diaphanous clouds.

This two hour+ YouTube (audio only) has been my soundtrack for today. Music like this is why the word "Sublime" was coined:

I was thinking that Governor of New York State Andrew Cuomo is being portrayed very favorably in the news recently with his leadership during the Chinese Virus epidemic. The contrast between him and NY City Mayor DeBlasio is palpable. There seem to be forces at work here and sundance at The Last Refuge sees the same things:

The Chosen One Rises…
The ‘good cop bad cop’ routine with deBlasio just seemed a little too scripted… Then the framework of a usefully constructed contrast narrative started to become clear… Then, as if on cue, all national broadcasts started being interrupted for maximum exposure; again a little odd.

A deep, very deep, connection to Bloomberg reappeared as a little flashing light in the corner of the picture… Then the Murdoch’s started to shape the landscape; curiosity piqued… Followed by positioning that seems a little too centrally located in the political sphere.. Then Hannity and Bannon started singing his praises.  Well, Bannon doesn’t exactly have a good track record of judgement… I digress.  But it really wasn’t until the CIA started publishing their endorsement that things possibly started making sense. WATCH:

Are they positioning NY Governor Andrew Cuomo to exit the DNC convention as the consensus nominee; the chosen one? It would take the construct, at least the optics of, a reluctantly drafted candidate to pull it off. Then again, what is all this – if not that.

Think that’s crazy?…. Let’s keep watching.

More at the site. The 360+ comments are well worth reading too. sundance is on to something. Cuomo's speech in that video was very carefully scripted. He would actually make an OK President. As much as I want to see Trump continue for another term, I would not be as heartbroken as I was when President Obama was elected.

I am also incredibly glad to see someone with real political power coming in to fill the gap so Hillary doesn't think that she can try again - it is her turn after all...

And break time

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The day turned out overcast but still fairly warm - temps around 55°F or so. The mailbox faeries brought me the RAM to upgrade the ham radio computer from 4GB to 8GB - should be quite the kick in the pants when that is installed. This computer is not running very much but the RAM cost less than $30 (it is an older machine) and couple that with the free (retired from an older project) upgrade from the hard disk to the solid state drive, it will be ready to rock for another ten years.

Running Ham Radio Deluxe, WSJTflDigi,  and a bunch of Arduino and Raspberry Pi development tools - dual boot of course. Running Windows10 and currently playing around with MX Linux - do not like systemd and want to run without its problems and bloat.

Late and large lunch so light dinner this evening. Back to work for this kid...

And coffeetime

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Heading out for coffee and check the mail.

Starting to cloud over a bit - wonderful sunrise though.

Turns out that we had a small temblor this morning - 3.2 near Duvall, WA - pretty deep though.

From Seattle station KOMO:

Skagit Co. investigates cluster of COVID-19 cases linked to group meeting
Health officials in Skagit County are investigating a cluster of coronavirus cases traced to a group meeting of approximately 60 people in early March.

Testing has found that more than half of the attendees who were at this gathering are now confirmed or probable cases of COVID-19.

"This situation clearly illustrates the highly contagious nature of COVID-19 and emphasizes the importance of following social distancing guidelines in order to control the spread of the virus," Skagit County health officials said in a prepared statement.

Skagit County Public Health is now contacting everyone who was at the meeting, as well as the close contacts of those who were infected, and warning them to self-isolate.

The virus is not as lethal as the early estimates thought but it is highly contageous and you can be asymptomatic and still be infective. Practice common sense...

Earthquake in Croatia

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Major (5.3) quake right in the capital city of Zagreb. From the Beeb:

Earthquake rocks Croatia's capital Zagreb
An earthquake has rocked Croatia's capital Zagreb, damaging buildings and leaving cars crushed by falling chunks of masonry.

A teenager is in a critical condition after a roof collapsed, local media say. The spire of the city's cathedral also snapped off.

After Sunday's tremor, Zagreb's mayor urged people to return to their homes given fears about the coronavirus.

The 5.3-magnitude quake is the largest to affect the city in 140 years.

Panicked residents ran out into the streets when it struck around 06:00 local time and were initially told to stay out by authorities.

"Keep your distance. Don't gather together. We are facing two serious crises, the earthquake and the epidemic," Interior Minister Davor Bozinovic said.

Cell phone video is already online:

The area is seismically active but the quakes are (thank God) not frequent. They had a major one in 1667 and a large one in 1880 - the 1880 quake was Magnitude 6.3. As the Magnitude scale is logarithmic, this one would have been ten times the strength of today's 5.3. Prayers going out to the people.

Glorious sunrise

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Woke up to a wonderful sky this morning - a glorious sunrise and looks to be a great day.

And that is it for me - sleepy

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Watch a few videos, work on the music computer and early bedtime.

Looks like the school system is overdue for a good dose of Clorox - from the New York Post:

‘Blood on their hands:’ Teachers say de Blasio and Carranza helped spread coronavirus
One after another, sick Brooklyn Technical High School teachers called union chapter leader Nate Bonheimer last week, to tell him they’d tested positive for COVID-19.

By Friday, five of them had shared the devastating news. But after being notified about each one, the city Department of Education still ordered the 6,000-student school’s 350 staffers to show up for work last week, saying the building had been cleaned.

“The DOE did not close the school for any of the cases,” said Bonheimer, who worries that inaction exposed others to the dreaded infection.

The city failed to follow a March 9 directive by the state Education Department that “requires an initial 24-hour closure, in order to begin an investigation to determine the contacts that the individual may have had within the school environment.”

People who are incompetent will generally appoint incompetent individuals for subsidiary positions. They do not want to be upstaged. Bad leadership begets bad leadership.

And the party's over - rain coming

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Looked at the forecast and tomorrow looks to be the last rain-free day for some time.

Grrrr.... Was getting used to the sunshine and dry weather. Even liked being socked in in the morning and then having the sun burn through the clouds. Makes for some gorgeous scenery.

Doing more software upgrades to the music computer. Used to use Sonar as my Digital Audio Workstation (DAW) but am switching over to Cubase - trying that out. Sonar went out of business but their assets were purchased and it is now available for free. Do not know what upgrades they are planning through. A lot of people are using Cubase and it has a lot of what I am looking for so give that one a try for a year or so.

Dinner was delicious - every so often, I get in the mood for Tacos and it takes me about 5-6 meals to get it out of my system for a while. Good stuff.

Or any illness that comes along. Masks? JoAnne Fabrics

Help Support our Country’s Medical Personnel
Making protective masks & gowns is a great way to help during this critical time

A bunch of resources (patterns, fabric specifications) for making medical N95 masks.

For all things food - from Serious Eats:

Food Safety and Coronavirus: A Comprehensive Guide
As the father of a young toddler, the son of two senior parents in the at-risk age group, and the chef/partner of a restaurant that up until recently employed a few dozen people and fed hundreds on any given night, knowing what is and isn't safe in the current environment is of the utmost importance to me, especially as it relates to food and dining.

Like many densely populated metropolitan areas, the Bay Area is now on complete lockdown. All non-essential businesses are closed, gatherings of large groups of people are banned, and residents have been told to leave their houses only if necessary. Among the businesses still running—at least in limited capacity—are supermarkets and restaurants, the latter of which are solely allowed to operate as take-out and delivery venues. I expect more cities will follow suit in the coming days and weeks.

Even so, plenty of folks—myself included—have been confused or curious about the safety of allowing restaurants to continue preparing and serving food. Is it actually safe? Should I reheat the food when I get it home? Is it better to support local businesses by ordering food, or am I only putting workers and delivery people at risk? And if I’m cooking my own food, what guidelines should I follow?

To answer these questions, I referenced dozens of articles and scientific reports and enlisted the help of Ben Chapman, a food safety specialist from the North Carolina State University and cohost of Risky or Not and Food Safety Talk.

Whether you managed to stock your fridge and pantry, or were left staring at empty supermarket shelves, there's good news: you can still eat safely, even from restaurants, provided you follow a few basic guidelines.

I'll start by going over what we know about the virus, followed by some basic rules to safely shop, cook, and order food.

This is an incredible resource not only for the Chinese Virus but for all food safety. Sending this link out to a bunch of people I know - well worth spreading around.

Little man wanted to be king

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Spent a lot of money - imagine what could have happened if he spent it wisely instead of on narcissistic self-aggrandizement.
From The Hill:

Bloomberg spent over $900M on presidential campaign
Former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg dropped more than $900 million on his presidential campaign, an eye-popping figure for a White House bid that lasted a little more than three months.

New filings with the Federal Election Commission (FEC) showed that Bloomberg, a billionaire who personally bankrolled his bid, spent $875,369,840.07 through the end of February. The campaign accrued debts of an additional $31,661,136.33.

Imagine how many charter schools could have been built. How many Voc-Tec training centers. Provide something good and tangible for his constituency instead of some vague idea of tyranny masquerading as benevolent despotism.

Andrew Carnegie built over 2,500 public libraries from 1883 through 1929 - many of these are still in operation. He was a plutocrat but he also understood the benefit to society of an educated populace.

Glad I do not live in a major city

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The Chinese Virus is going to really highlight the difference between the well-run and poorly-run cities around the world.

Last night, I was mentioning how New York City Mayor Warren Wilhelm, Jr. Bill DeBlasio was handeling the city and what his own people thought of it (not well). This morning brings news that things are worse - a lot worse.

Here it is in a few headlines:

And, of course, the narrative must be preserved and promoted:

And, it is not just New York City - looks like the other major progressive population centers are about to get hit too:

Once this hits the homeless population, watch out. The homeless will catch it and die but all the people who take care of them will catch it as well and during their two or three weeks of asymptomatic walking around, they will spread it the rest of their cohort, their friends and family, fellow grocery shoppers, commuters, etc... What most people are doing now is Kabuki Theater at best. This is going to get a lot worse before it will get better.

Break time

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Spent the morning working at home. Got back from the food co-op - picked up some greens and stuff for the next couple of days. They were restricting the number of people shopping - line outside and when a couple of people exited, they let a couple of people enter.

Having a late lunch, play with the dogs for a bit and then work some more on the garage. Reorganizing it - putting the storage and the tools section in a different location and other stuff. Going to be really nice when I am done - already a big improvement.

Surf for a bit and then back to work. The flank steak thawed out so have it in a giner/soy marinade with some chipotle pepper and lime juice. Fusion is a good thing.

Out for coffee

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Another foggy and lazy day - spent the morning working on the music computer. Upgrading some software.

Heading out for coffee, a few errands and spending the rest of the day here.

Tacos for dinner again tonight - thawing out some more of the flank steak. Bought a pair of these a couple months ago and they make all the difference in the world for ease of assembly and neatness of eating: Stainless Steel Taco Holder Tray

Census2020

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Got my form in the mail and filled it out online. Short form this time around - 2000 was a very long paper form.

Wonder what fed.gov will do about the 20 Tasmanian cross-dressing circus performers living with me at this address. A lot of fun and some good food and music. It's the 37 (plus or minus) Visigoths in the yurt in my back yard that has the community a bit peeved. The Yak dung smoke can be pungent - especially when it is damp outside.

Love my tacos

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Dinner was excellent again - had three and seriously thinking about doing another one or two more. Got the stuff but will probably not - getting late. Save this for tomorrow's dinner... Made some pickled carrots and onions two weeks ago - they were a perfect adjunct to dinner. Nice spice level.

Warren Wilhelm, Jr. at work - or not

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He changed his name and now goes by Bill DeBlasio - mayor of New York City.

A two-fer from The New York Post - first: a demonstration of his situational awareness:

City Hall didn’t secure 1st order of COVID-19 supplies for NYC until March 6
Mayor Bill de Blasio has blamed President Trump for the city’s severe shortage of COVID-19 supplies even though City Hall didn’t secure its first order for emergency protective gear until March 6, The Post has learned.

Officials with the city’s Office of Emergency Management tried to purchase nearly 200,000 n95 masks on Feb. 7, but weeks later they learned the vendors had already run out.

It was not until March 6 and March 10 — over two months after the coronavirus outbreak first hit China — that they finally secured the first emergency procurements of masks and hand sanitizer, according to the city comptroller’s office.

“Our city is the epicenter of this outbreak in the United States, and we are lacking supplies because the mayor didn’t notice until two weeks ago?” fumed City Councilman Chaim Deutsch.

Second - a nice guy to work with:

De Blasio’s senior staff in near revolt over his coronavirus response
When Mayor de Blasio dragged a half dozen aides and members of his NYPD security detail to his Brooklyn YMCA Monday morning amidst the coronavirus outbreak, fellow fitness enthusiasts were coughing and sneezing — and a mentally ill person was walking around touching the equipment, a gym source said.

“It’s crazy that he made his staff and detail come with him to the gym and expose them like that,” the source said.

But the incident is just one example of the mayor’s disregard for the health of his staff during the crisis, multiple sources told The Post.

Meanwhile, Governor Andrew Cuomo actually has a finger on things (from the same article):

‘Thank god for Cuomo,’ is a common refrain among the mayor’s staff, made only partly in jest, sources said.

That’s because Gov. Andrew Cuomo has taken the lead on the city’s COVID-19 response — canceling the St. Patrick’s Day Parade, shutting down large venues including Broadway, and even pushing the mayor to close public schools.

But instead of the big picture, the head of the City that Never Sleeps has insisted on proofing all public materials about the city’s COVID-19 response from press releases to ad campaigns, one source said.

“Instead of micromanaging his team he should be leading right now,” the source said.

Leadership is not winning a popularity contest or handing out "free" government shit.

Leadership is about leadership. In good times as well as in bad times. DeBlasio simply does not have it. He is one of the new-school narcissist elites who could not lead a bagel out of a paper bag if it was held upside down over the plate.

The WHO is a useless adjunct to the also-useless United Nations. The WHO's egregious over-estimate of fatalities from Wuhan Flu is one of the major foundations of the panic we are currently dealing with. Now this - from Daily Caller:

Taiwan Says It Warned WHO About Coronavirus In December, But Its Warnings Were Ignored
Taiwan is blaming the World Health Organization’s relationship with China for its failure to act on early warnings of human-to-human transmission of coronavirus.

Taiwanese health officials alerted WHO of the infectivity of coronavirus in late December 2019, but the organization failed to report the claims to other countries, according to a Financial Times report.

Weeks after receiving Taiwan’s warning, on Jan. 14, WHO repeated China’s claim that coronavirus was not contagious among humans.

The Financial Times hides behind a paywall so I am not linking to it.

The WHO is a body of minor bureaucrats who like to play at being important. The United States needs to stop funding them. End of story. It is way past time to move the United Nations out of New York City - some prime real estate there.

Turn it into a Trump Tower and rent out the office space to businesses that actually perform real work.

Tacos for dinner again tonight

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Was very foggy this morning again but it burned off around 10AM. Gorgeous day - temps actually broke 60°F.

Making some more tacos for dinner - picked up some flour/corn blend "street" tortillas as my large flour ones were a bit stale yesterday.

Grocery delivery was a lot of fun - really sweet people. The community center is working with the grocery store to do shopping for shut-ins three days/week. Volunteered to do the driving - nice to get out of the house and discover parts of the island.

A two-fer from Judicial Watch - first - Hillary:

FBI Finds New Clinton Emails, Including Discussion about Benghazi and Additional Classified Material
Judicial Watch today released 80 pages of new emails recently found by the FBI that further document how former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton used her unsecure, non-government email to transmit classified and other sensitive government information. The documents include 11 new Clinton email documents. The emails include an email sent by Mrs. Clinton a month after the Benghazi terrorist attack referencing a “Benghazi security” issue. The emails also include talking points, which are redacted, for a meeting with President Obama. (This is the second release from the batch of Clinton emails the FBI inexplicably found late last year.)

The State Department previously claimed it had produced all releasable Clinton emails, including emails recovered by the FBI that Hillary Clinton tried to destroy or withhold. The State Department initially claimed all responsive emails had been produced in 2018, but then found more emails, which were produced for the first time early this year.

Hillary was not only corrupt and venal, she was inept and stupid. Do not even get me started about the Democrat's IT Guys - the Awan brothers (here,  here,  here,  here,  here,  here,  here,  here,  here,  here,  here,  here and here for a start).

Second - Adam Schiff:

House Lawyers for Adam Schiff Assert Privilege over Schiff Subpoenas of Impeachment Phone Records
Judicial Watch announced today that Representative Adam Schiff (D-CA) and the U.S. House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence asked the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to dismiss the lawsuit against them for the controversial impeachment-related subpoenas for phone records, including those of Rudy Giuliani, President Trump’s lawyer. Schiff and the Committee are being represented by the Office of General Counsel for the House of Representatives.

The phone records led to the publication of the private phone records of Giuliani, Congressman Devon Nunes, journalist John Solomon, Trump attorney Jay Sekulow, attorney Victoria Toensing, and other American citizens.

Schiff et. al. do not have anything. They never had anything. They know it and they do not want the general public to know that they spent all this time, money and taxpayer dollars over a great huge nothingburger. It would go against the narrative. Of course they are going to use every tactic in the book to stall and obfuscate. They lied to us.

News you can use - Germs

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From "Weird Al" Yankovic

So now we know what he has been doing while self-quarantining (more here: germs).

Looks like mall retailer Victoria's Secret is now pandering to a vocal minority. Welcome to the decent into Social Justice world. From Breitbart:

Victoria’s Secret Launches Transgender, Plus-Sized Campaign In Midst of Coronavirus Pandemic
Victoria’s Secret chose the middle of a worldwide pandemic to launch its spring campaign featuring transgender and plus-sized models. But interested consumers will have to wait as the lingerie brand said this week that it is closing its physical and online stores due to the coronavirus.

The new “Body by Victoria” campaign kicked off this week featuring Brazilian transgender model Valentina Sampaio and two plus-sizes models — Candice Huffine and Solange van Doorn — according to a report from W Magazine. The campaign was photographed by former runway star Helena Christensen.

Again, I have zero problem with people pursuing their sexual fantasies. Absolutely no problem with that. What gets me is that the entire gay population of the entire United States is about 3 or 4%.  A room with 100 people will have three or four gay people. Of course, people can move and do - gay people tend to move towards dense urban populations so cities like Seattle or New York, etc... will have significantly larger percentages but overall, again, the population is more than 3% and less than 4% (2000 census).

The percentage of the extremes - transgender, etc. is a small subset of the total gay population so you are probably looking at 0.1% or less of the total US population.

Why are these people getting so much publicity. Why are us normals kowtowing to this fringe group?

Anyway, it will be interesting to follow the fortunes of V.S. Like any other institution, they will get woke and then go broke. This has happened time after time with American Culture (Gillette, Ghostbusters, The Boy Scouts, etc... more here

Get Woke, Go Broke

Why Italy? The Chinese Virus

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Why is Italy being hit so hard?  Robert Stacy McCain takes a good look at the reason. From Spectator:

Coronavirus: The Price of Luxury
As the United States prepares for a second week of lockdown to slow the spread of the Chinese coronavirus (COVID-19), hundreds of people in Italy are dying every day from this disease. And the reason why Italy now has more coronavirus deaths than any other country can be summarized in a single word — luxury.

In the world of fashion, the “Made in Italy” tag has a distinct value associated with luxury and status. Merchants can charge higher prices for clothing, shoes, handbags, and other fashion goods manufactured in Italy, and that value was coveted by certain Chinese entrepreneurs. During the past three decades, more and more Chinese investors bought into textile and leather-good factories in northern Italy, and they brought over Chinese laborers to work in those factories. By 2010, there were reportedly 60,000 Chinese in Prato, an industrial suburb of Florence. To accommodate Italy’s new foreign labor force, nonstop flights were established between China and Rome.

None of this was a secret. The Chinese takeover of “Made in Italy” fashion was reported by, among other publications, the Chicago Tribune (“Chinese immigrants transform Italy’s fashion industry,” Jan. 2, 2009), the New York Times (“Chinese Remake the ‘Made in Italy’ Fashion Label,” Sept. 12, 2010), the BBC (“The Italian fashion capital being led by the Chinese,” Feb. 12, 2013), Reuters (“Italy’s Chinese garment workshops boom as workers suffer,” Dec. 29, 2013), the Associated Press (“Clashes amid Italy’s crackdown on its Chinese community,” July 1, 2016) and the New Yorker (“The Chinese Workers Who Assemble Designer Bags in Tuscany,” April 9, 2018). In the wake of the coronavirus outbreak, however, our media seem to have gotten a case of collective amnesia; readers and viewers are left mystified as to why Italy has become the epicenter of this pandemic.

After the coronavirus scare sent Italy into a nationwide lockdown earlier this month, several U.S. news organizations (including NPRTime magazine, and ABC News) decided to address the question, “Why Italy?” Most of their answers had to do with demographics and aging, with Italy having a much larger proportion of senior citizens than other countries. None of them, however, made mention of the tens of thousands of Chinese laborers working in clothing plants in northern Italy, where their COVID-19 outbreak was first detected in February. Considering how the role of Chinese workers in the “Made in Italy” fashion boom had been so widely reported in the past decade, could it be that journalists suddenly forgot this fact? Or should we suspect that these reporters are deliberately overlooking the connection between Italy’s Chinese labor force and this deadly pandemic?

Much more at the site - well researched and a damning condemnation of globalism. Globalism is only attractive to rich people who want to become even more rich. It offers nothing of value to We The People.

And out for a while

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Coffee and the usual. Been enjoying a lazy morning so far but have a lot to do today - storage unit, music room, garage and then doing another afternoon grocery run for shut-ins through our local community center.

Nothing much on the ham radio - the neighboring county is still having radio operators working in their Emergency Operations Center but my two counties (I live on a border) are standing down.

From her office: Nancy Pelosi - Speaker of the House (March 19th, 2020)

Pelosi Statement Calling on President Trump to Use Defense Production Act Powers Immediately
“Right now, shortages of critical medical and personal protective equipment are harming our ability to fight the coronavirus epidemic, endangering frontline workers and making it harder to care for those who fall ill.

“The President must immediately use the powers of the Defense Production Act to mass produce and coordinate distribution of these critical supplies, before the need worsens and the shortages become even more dire. There is not a day to lose. We must put more testing, more protective equipment and more ventilators into the hands of our frontline workers immediately.”

From CNN (March 18th, 2020)

Trump invokes Defense Production Act to expand production of hospital masks and more
President Donald Trump said during Wednesday's White House press briefing that he will be invoking the Defense Production Act to help make up for potential medical supply shortages and deploy two hospital ships as the US battles the coronavirus pandemic.

Trump said that he sees the country on wartime footing and himself as a wartime president amid the coronavirus crisis.

"I view it -- in a sense as a wartime president," Trump said after announcing he was invoking the Defense Production Act, which was established in 1950 in response to production needs during the Korean War.

You would think that her office would be better at basic fact checking.

Touching a nerve? Chrissy Teigen

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She went on an anti-FLOTUS rant the other day. From Gateway Pundit - two excerpts:

Target store representative Chrissy Teigen went off on a foul-mouthed rant against First Lady Melania Trump on Tuesday, calling her a “wifebot” and culminating in a filthy “fuck you”.

Any celebrity saying this to Michelle Obama would have lost their corporate sponsorships immediately.
Teigen, who is married to popular musician John Legend, has a kitchen product line at Target called, the “Cravings” by Chrissy Teigen collection.

And her kitchen product line? A photo:

20200319-teigen-china.jpg

(for the benefit of my liberal readership, I added two red arrows)

From United Press International:

Trump changes in-person G7 meeting at Camp David to a teleconference
President Donald Trump on Thursday canceled an in-person meeting of the leaders of the Group of Seven nations at Camp David and will instead hold a video teleconference.

Trump's top economic advisor Larry Kudlow informed the other members of the G7 nations, which include Canada, Japan, Britain, France, Italy and Germany, of the change of plans for the June meeting on Thursday, White House spokesman Judd Deere said.

Great call - every one of these leaders has pressing issues at home. Makes sense to use the appropriate technology. Saves their taxpayers some money too - no fancy junkets for you.

Tennessee

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Listen all the way through - drink alert though, had to clean the soda off my keyboard:

Tip of the hat to Kenny at Knuckledraggin My Life Away

I'll post photos when I am done - still pretty chaotic.

Feel like tacos again so thawing out some skirt steak - been on a real animal protein kick recently. Eat pure vegetarian for six months and whammo - carnivore for a while. Zucchini is pretty good on a grill but some skirt steak is quite a bit better.

Did the dump run today, will do the storage unit run tomorrow morning.

Ecclesiastes 7:6

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Came to mind as I was thinking about all the doom-sayers and TDS sufferers. King James of course:

For as the crackling of thorns under a pot, so is the laughter of the fool: this also is vanity.

That is all that they are - vanity. To think that they consider themselves to be the cultural elite and that they "know" how we need to be governed. That we are the basket of deplorables.

Enough lollygagging

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Time to get back to work.

This just in - COVID-19

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Chuck Norris was exposed to the COVID-19 virus yesterday.

The virus is now in quarantine for two weeks.

Never let a serious crisis go to waste

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Second time I have used that quote in two days - from Obama's henchman and Chief of Staff

This example from San Jose, CA's The Mercury News:

Coronavirus: San Jose orders gun store to close in one of first enforcement against businesses open under shelter order
As Bay Area business owners navigated the labyrinthine rules of the sweeping shelter-in-place order implemented Monday, many gun dealers across the region opted to stay open this week, amid a spike in sales apparently driven by fears over the coronavirus pandemic.

But after customers lined up around gun stores in several counties Tuesday — including outside the Bullseye Bishop in San Jose — San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo declared that “gun stores are non-essential.”

Tyrants do not like their citizenry to be armed. I am reminded of this quote:

'Among the many misdeeds of the British rule in India, history will look back upon the Act depriving the whole nation of arms as the blackest.'
-- Gandhi, Mohandas K. "Mahatma", An Autobiography: The Story of My Experiments with Truth, tr. Mahadev Desai, Part V., Ch. XXVII

Little tools of the state

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Ratting on their neighbors - California of course. From FOX News:

Californians are calling 911 on their coughing neighbors
Multiple police departments in Southern California say they have been receiving more 911 calls from residents concerned that their coughing neighbor may have the coronavirus.

The phone calls have increased concurrently with the number of coronavirus cases in Riverside and San Bernardino County, the Desert Sun reported.

Nice to know who you can trust when it come to crunch time. I have zero doubt that these are the same people who will loot their homes when the neighbors are taken to the hospital. No wonder they want communism. They do not want to be the factory worker or the farmer, they want to be the bureaucrat. They are all about the free stuff.

Lunch break

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Getting stuff done here. Taking a break for lunch.

Speaking truth to power - China

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From Pat Condell:

Tip of the hat to Vanderleun

More about China - not nice people:

And the next pandemic from China?

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This is wonderful - from Voice of America:

Mystery Illness Kills Ethiopian Nomads
More than 2,000 nomads in Ethiopia’s Somali region have died since 2014 after falling ill from a mysterious disease that caused bleeding from their mouths and noses.

Other reported symptoms include swollen limbs and green or yellow eyes.

The affected people roam with their cattle around the Ogaden Basin region, which is being explored by companies looking for oil and natural gas.

Reports of the mysterious illness and deaths have drawn Western reporters and researchers from rights groups to investigate.

Residents of Calub, Ethiopia, have accused a Chinese project that includes construction of a pipeline from Ogaden to Djibouti of destroying the environment where their animals are grazing.

Sounds more like chemical toxicity than an infective disease but still... Not good.

A Never-Trumper praising our President. From FOX News:

Ilhan Omar praises Trump's 'incredible' response to coronavirus pandemic
Minnesota Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar unexpectedly praised President Trump's handling of the coronavirus pandemic on Wednesday night, saying it was "incredible and the right response in this critical time."

Omar, normally a staunch critic of the White House who herself has repeatedly drawn the president's ire, went on to quote Rep. Ayanna Pressley, D-Mass., as saying "unprecedented times require unprecedented leadership" -- and, Omar added, "we are seeing that in our country right now."

"Finally, we should never let politics get in the way of good policy," Omar concluded. "This is a great start and hope others will be part of a united front to push for good policies that will help us work through the economic anxiety the country is feeling right now."

The kids are recognising that daddy was right after all. Good that they are being public about it - shows candor and honesty.

Socked in

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Woke up to dense fog - cannot see beyond about 60-100 yards. Pea Soup. Forecast calls for cloudy but it said nothing about them hanging out at sea level.

Shower, coffee, post office, fix some breakfast and on to another day.

I was not planning to attend this year's conference but the national blacksmith guild (ABANA) sent an email this morning cancelling the conference in Saratoga, NY. This is in June - quite a ways out. Huge event - been to others and loved it - a lot of fun and really good people.

I am done for the day

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Some YouTube and that is it.

Busy day tomorrow - start putting the music room together (computer and mixing desk first). Also garage - got the van loaded up for a dump run and then, the storage locker.

A kick in the pants - SSD

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Finished the install of a Solid State Disk Drive into my other Music computer. It is amazing the performance boost you get when going from a physical rotating disk drive to a chunk of NVRAM masquerading as a disk drive. This was a drive I had from an earlier project so a free upgrade to boot. (wooo hoooo!!!)

Heating up dinner now - a bit late (got distracted).

From the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:

Truckers 'extremely disappointed' PennDOT closed rest stops
A national organization representing truck drivers is upset that the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation has closed rest areas and welcome centers due to the COVID-19 virus.

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association said Tuesday it is “extremely disappointed” that the state has closed the areas, where drivers stop to sleep and use restrooms. PennDOT announced Monday it was closing the areas to limit social interaction to help stop the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

“We understand this decision was likely made in an effort to limit passenger vehicle movement, interaction among travelers, and the state’s administration and supervision of these facilities during an emergency declaration,” the association said in a news release. “However, rest areas are vitally important to truckers, who at this time are being heavily relied upon to transport critical supplies across the country.”

A perfect example of doing something that sounds good as opposed to something that actually DOES good.

Pennsylvania is interesting in that it has alternated between Republican and Democrat governors since the 1980's - it was strongly Republican before.

The title? From Mr. B. Bunny

President Trump just did it again - a perfect solution to a problem. He is a businessman and successful businessmen do that on a daily basis. From PJ Media:

Trump Orders Military Hospital Ships 'Mercy' and 'Comfort' to New York
Donald Trump ordered "two yuge ships" outfitted for treating patients and currently used by the military to set sail for the most heavily infected areas of America.

According to Trump's press conference statements on Wednesday, the ships are set for rapid deployment. "They're getting ready to come up to New York," he said. "Those two ships are getting prepared to go." The ships are floating hospitals that are normally used near war zones but are being repurposed to aid in the coronavirus outbreak that experts fear will overwhelm U.S. hospitals. Currently, no hospitals are reporting being overwhelmed with cases.

Each ship has 1,000 beds and 12 operating rooms - perfect. A proactive and immediate response.

It is also the perfect finger in the eye for demagogues like Chuckie Schumer who puts down anything that Trump does just to advance the liberal narrative. New Yorkers are not stupid - they can see the two huge floating hospital ships in the harbor. They will know who is really taking care of their friends and family and will remember next November. There is a big difference between a handful of free trinkets and an act of forethought and substance.

No worries - toilet paper

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An interesting adventure

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Our local community center offered to facilitate grocery shopping for people who do not want to venture out. I volunteered to drive for them (I'm a member) and made my first trip today. Was always wondering if there was a really "wealthy" neighborhood on the island. I found one of them - gated community and gorgeous houses.

Lots of nice fences, gates and railings - looking forward to building my shop this spring and get going with the blacksmithing side of things.

Glad I am not in Hawai'i

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It would be nice and warm but I can do without the tornados. From Cliff Mass:

Kona Low Hits Hawaii with Heavy Rain and Tornado Warnings
During another time you might feel very sorry for the poor folks vacationing on Kauai. Instead of enjoying their Mai Tais under sunny skies and modest trade winds, they are suffering from heavy rains, very strong southerly winds, severe thunderstorm, and unusual tornado warnings

The cause of this bounty of inclement weather? A very large Kona Storm.

A Kona storm (or Kona Low) is a low pressure center that develops to the west or southwest of the Hawaiian islands that bring moist, cloudy, or unstable air into the Hawaiian islands. Associated with low-level winds from the south to west, Kona lows can bring rain to the western and southwestern ("kona") sides of the islands that are normally rainshadowed by the terrain. Typically trade winds are from the east to northeast, thus the eastern/northeastern sides are typically the wettest.

Kauai is my favorite of the islands and am familiar with the places Cliff talks about.  Helpful hint: If you are there and looking for good authentic Hawai'ian shirts, go to the Costco. They have local goods for kama‘āina and not haole prices.

Cliff notes:

Kona storms like this typically occur 2-3 times a year and according to Kona Low expert, Professor Steve Businger of the University of Hawaii, they are often poorly forecast.

I am seriously thinking of planning some trips to Hawaii to work on this important problem 😋😁

Such a rough job. Feel sorry for the guy... Almost...

These are the people who think they know how to run the Nation. They can not even run their own shithole cities.
From the Baltimore, Md. CBS affiliate:

Baltimore Mayor Begs Residents To Stop Shooting Each Other So Hospital Beds Can Be Used For Coronavirus Patients
Baltimore Mayor Jack Young urged residents to put down their guns and heed orders to stay home after multiple people were shot Tuesday night amidst the coronavirus pandemic.

Young said hospital beds are needed to treat positive COVID-19 patients and not for senseless violence. Seven people were shot Tuesday night in the Madison Park neighborhood, as Baltimore reported its fifth positive coronavirus case Wednesday.

“I want to reiterate how completely unacceptable the level of violence is that we have seen recently,” Young said. “We will not stand for mass shootings and an increase in crime.”

What fscking hubris: "We will not stand for mass shootings and an increase in crime"
What are you going to do moron? Make the Baltimore gun laws more draconian? Stake out more "gun free" zones? Here's a novel idea, why don't you tell your police force to arrest the criminals and throw their asses into jail for a long time. Why don't you bring jobs back to the city of Baltimore - it used to have a booming economy before it was bled dry to pay for all the free shit.

Baltimore's last Republican mayor left office in 1947. His successor was Tommy D'Alesandro. Nancy Pelosi's brother. Talk about a crime political family.

Some wise words - the Wuhan Flu

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From Liberty's Torch - some words about the Wuhan Flu. As Obama's henchman said: "You never let a serious crisis go to waste" (Rahm Emanuel - former Chief Of Staff and the architect of Obamacare)

Resist Viral Subjugation
Enough people are writing about the Wuhan virus as a disease that I feel no personal need to expound on it. At any rate, I’m neither an epidemiologist nor a virologist. But I can tell good reasoning from bad. Here’s some good reasoning, complete with supporting data. I exhort my Gentle Readers to absorb it in its entirety, as the arithmetic is both simple and reassuring.

Now, let’s have a look at what politicians and their media handmaidens have been saying and doing about the Wuhan pandemic:

All the individuals mentioned in the list above are Democrats.

We know, quite as surely as we know that the sun rises in the East, that Democrats prize power above all else. We also know that the path to federal power lies in the American economy. When the economy is doing well, the party ascendant at the federal level tends to receive increased support from the electorate. But when it’s doing poorly – and how much more poorly could it do than a total shutdown – the reverse is the case.

We must fight them. They are losing. They know they are losing and if they are defeated, it will be 50 years before they have a chance to gain power again so they are fighting with all their strength. They must be crushed.

This guy is so wrong on so many things I still find it stunning that he was awarded a Nobel Prize in Economics.
From the NY Times of 03/16/2020:

Step Aside for Powell and Pelosi
Republicans, it turns out, can’t do economic policy

America’s catastrophically inadequate response to the coronavirus can be attributed largely to bad short-term decisions by one man. And I do mean short-term: At every stage, Donald Trump minimized the threat and blocked helpful action because he wanted to look good for the next news cycle or two, ignoring and intimidating anyone who tried to give him good advice.

OK - we get it. Orange Man is BAD. Seriously, his Trump Derangement Syndrome is getting worse as time goes on. He needs to think about getting treatment  before it is too late. President Trump's second four years of winning is going to send poor Paul over the edge.

 - yadda - yadda - yadda -

Trump disbanded the National Security Council’s pandemic response team in 2018, although he now, with his characteristic refusal to accept responsibility for anything, says that he knew nothing about it. And he has in general staffed his administration with obsequious toadies who never tell him anything he doesn’t want to hear.

BZZZZTTT!  Absolutly wrong. The team was re-organised, not disbanded. The FAKE "story" was started by one person from the team who lost their job in the re-org. It was picked up by Jeff Bezos' Washington Post in 2018. Fast forward to today where they recant their story - from Red State:

WaPo Opinion Piece Debunks Another False Story: No, Trump Didn’t ‘Eliminate’ the Pandemic Response Office
Democrats and media have told multiple lies about the response by the Trump administration to the Wuhan coronavirus. They falsely claimed that Trump cut the CDC when the budget was actually increased. Democrats including Joe Biden claimed that he was muzzling scientists from talking about the virus response even as those same scientists like Dr. Anthony Fauci were very visible giving advice and information in press conferences.

Perhaps one of the biggest lies was saying that President Donald Trump had called the virus a hoax when in fact he said no such thing. What he said was their lies about his response, like the ones I just mentioned in the prior paragraph, were a “hoax.”

But there was another story that has gotten a lot of traction and really wasn’t debunked until today, although it should have been debunked by media earlier, if they had really been concerned about accuracy – that is that the Trump administration eliminated the “pandemic team” from the NSC in 2018.

One place in which it was pushed was the Washington Post, who pushed the claim in an opinion piece on Friday by Elizabeth Cameron, who ran the office under President Obama.

The person promoting the FAKE NEWS was the person who ran the org under the Obama administration and who was shown the door during its reorganization. No agenda there. The WaPo owned up to it a few days ago with this "opinion" piece.

Back to Mr. Krugman:

What’s now becoming clear is that when it comes to dealing with the economic fallout from Covid-19, the situation may be even worse. There are still some competent professionals holding senior positions at federal health agencies, who could give Trump good advice if he were willing to listen. But serious economic thinking has effectively been banned from this administration, if not the whole Republican Party. As far as I can tell, the Trump team is utterly incapable of formulating a coherent response to the gathering economic crisis.

And from here on, poor Paul goes off the rails. This is pure narrative. When you have no facts, push the narrative. They have nothing except the narrative and they are refusing to learn. They are shutting their eyes and ears and just wishing that the Bad Orange Man will just go away. Guess what, there are a lot more Bad Orange Men stacked up behind President Trump wanting our America to be out of the hands of the progressive globalists. The pendulum is swinging back again and our Nation is becoming better and stronger.

Go and read the rest of it if only from morbid fascination.

Really nice move - Uber Eats

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Great move from a good company - from their website: UBER Newsroom

Supporting the restaurant industry through an uncertain season
It’s Uber Eats’ mission to deliver food experiences that fuel everyday life. But today the world feels anything but business as usual. As we face the uncertainty of this health crisis together with our restaurant partners, we are thinking about how best to support independent restaurants in the U.S. & Canada that have been most significantly affected.

Supporting local business with no Delivery Fee
Uber Eats US Eat LocalWe know the success of every restaurant depends on customer demand. That’s why we’re working urgently to drive orders towards independent restaurants on Eats, to help make up for the significant slowdown of in-restaurant dining.

As more customers are choosing to stay indoors, we’ve waived the Delivery Fee for the more than 100,000 independent restaurants across US & Canada on Uber Eats. We will also launch daily dedicated, targeted marketing campaigns—both in-app and via email—to promote delivery from local restaurants, especially those that are new to the app.

Really nice touch - they did not have to do this. Yes, this will work out well for them in terms of future sales and growth but there is nothing wrong with that. A nice altruistic move and they were the first so any other companies that try this will be seen as copycats. Well done UBER

Lunchtime

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Quick break - really nice day. Started off cold (mild frost on the ground) but has warmed up to mid-50's

Surf and a sandwich and a Mexican Coca Cola made with real cane sugar.

Heading out for coffee. Working on the garage today. Upgrading the other music computer too - upgraded it to Windows 10 last night, installing an SSD today. Been too long without a keyboard set up here - starting to work in the music room.

Nothing much happening except for a swarm of earthquakes in Utah - 5.7Mag hit Salt Lake City. From CBS News:

5.7-magnitude earthquake shakes Salt Lake County, Utah
A 5.7-magnitude earthquake struck near Magna, Utah, Wednesday morning, according to the United States Geological Survey. The temblor knocked out power for tens of thousands and operations at Salt Lake City International Airport came to a halt.

It is the largest earthquake to hit the state since a 5.9 magnitude quake struck southern Utah in 1992, according to Utah Emergency Management.The quake was felt across Salt Lake County and in Ogden and as far away as Wyoming, CBS affiliate KUTV reports.

Power outages:

Rocky Mountain Power tweeted around 8 a.m. local time that it is aware of a "large scale power outage in the Salt Lake Valley Area impacting approximately 55,000 customers" due to the earthquake.

No word as to any damage to the pipe organ in the Mormon Tabernacle - a gorgeous instrument. The local FOX News affiliate is running a blog with constant updates: FOX13 Salt Lake City

From Pakistan's English language newspaper Daily Times:

China, Philippines detects bird flu outbreak
China’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs reported an animal outbreak of the often fatal H5N1 bird flu in thousands of chickens in the Hunan province, which borders the Hubei province to the south.

“The farm has 7,850 chickens, and 4,500 of the chickens have died from the contagion. Local authorities have culled 17,828 poultry after the outbreak,” a statement by China’s Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Affairs said.

Likewise, Philippines has detected an outbreak of avian flu in a northern province after tests showed the presence of the highly infectious H5N6 subtype of the influenza A virus in a quail farm, the country’s farm minister said on Monday (March 16).

Worry much?

...the outbreak is a cause for concern because this avian flu has a 60% mortality rate among infected humans, according to WHO. Additionally, the H5N1 bird flu can cause severe respiratory illness, including pneumonia, and neurological changes such as an altered mental state and seizures.

Just wonderful. The good news is that we are already locked down so spread will not be as bad or as rapid. A lot of nasty stuff out there and we as a planet are woefully under-prepared. It is not IF, it is WHEN

That is it - YouTube and bed

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Was feeling nappish earlier but stayed awake. Downright sleepy now - dinner was excellent, surfed a bit and now time for a pot of tea and watch some videos. Early bedtime.

Been watching TheCrafsMan SteadyCraftin channel recently - a lot of fun. He is more into figurines and toys than I am but his techniques and ideas are really good and his presentation is a hoot. Sort of an ASMR Bob Ross in an alternate universe.

How to do "social distancing"

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You can learn from a master - one of our neighbors briefly allowed a photographer to take a photo. These guys are masters at social distancing. There is also a smaller tribe in the hills of Vermont and New Hampshire but the bulk of them live quite happily on the Olympic Peninsula although there are a couple hundred in the Mt. Baker area where I used to live. Great people, fantastic sense of humor but really bad body odor.

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You can lead a politician to water

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But you can't make him think. From The Daily Wire:

Bill De Blasio Refused Major Efforts To Combat Coronavirus Until Aides Threatened To Quit, Report Says
New York City Democrat Mayor Bill de Blasio reportedly refused to take strict measures to combat the coronavirus until aides threatened to quit which came after he attacked President Donald Trump over the issue.

“There had been arguments and shouting matches between the mayor and some of his advisers; some top health officials had even threatened to resign if he refused to accept the need to close schools and businesses, according to several people familiar with the internal discussions,” The New York Times reported. “Teachers were threatening not to show up to school on Monday. A growing number of public health experts and politicians were calling for much of the city to be shut down to curb the spread of the virus.”

Bars and restaurants remained open over the weekend and were packed, something that caused a significant amount of criticism online from those who were closely tracking the spread of the coronavirus.

De Blasio, a far-left Democrat who supports socialist Bernie Sanders, has responded to the crisis by repeatedly stating that the federal government needs to take over the supply chain and that entire industries needs to be nationalized.

Yeah - nationalize everything - that will fix it. Worked great for Venezuela. For Cuba. For China. The low-information voters always fall for the free shit. The mentally ill go for the pandering of activists and We The People get screwed again.

Title? An old aphorism - true then, true now.

Poor little Greta

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The world is ending sooner than she wanted it to - from America's Newspaper of Record - The Babylon Bee:

Greta Thunberg Condemns Coronavirus For Causing Apocalypse 10 Years Early
Greta Thunberg has come out to condemn the coronavirus outbreak, saying the virus callously ended the world ten years before climate change even had the chance to.

As Thunberg is known for her fiery speeches and doomsday predictions about climate change, she began to worry that the spread of this virus would take the spotlight off her and her brave efforts and instead cause the world to worry about an actual, immediate crisis.

"How dare you cause the apocalypse a decade before it was supposed to happen!" she shouted at a press conference. "I was not consulted on this. I should be in school right now, but I'm not, because the whole world is under lockdown many years before I predicted the end would come."

"I still exist, remember!?"

At publishing time, Thunberg had been tossed out into the dumpster behind the Democratic headquarters in Washington, D.C., where she found David Hogg and dozens of other kids the Dems had exploited for their political agenda until they outlived their usefulness.

Great that they worked has-been Hogg into the article as well. The world will soon forget.
Their 15 minutes of fame is fleeting - Willie said it best:

That struts and frets his hour upon the stage
And then is heard no more: it is a tale
Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
Signifying nothing.

Kudos to Costco

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When I was there this morning getting the dog food, I noticed this:

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Talk about a short supply chain

This box came off their assembly line on the 11th. It went to their shipping department, was palletized, loaded on a truck and sent to the Costco distribution center, trucked to this warehouse and put up for sale all in six days. That is fast.

I had noticed earlier that weed, booze and gun sales are up in the Los Angeles area. At least for ammo, it is not just LA.
On the front page of the site for SGAmmo.com (really good people - family owned and run):

Due to overwhelming order volume over the past week we are not currently accepting new orders. We are currently 6 to 8 days behind on filling orders and the priority is going to be given to filling existing orders. We will begin to restore inventory later this week once we have a handle on shipping all orders that have been placed so far. In order to aid us in providing faster service, please do not email to ask when your order will ship unless you need to cancel or change the address. UPS will email tracking info the day the order ships and we are working as fast as we possibly can to fill your orders. We have inventory allocated to fill all existing orders, if you have an order in it will be filled.

Nice that they are so busy but it's strange that so many people are panic-buying (hamstern) over something that is about as bad as the generic influenza.

All we need now are lawyers and money and we have the basis for a good song or two.

Travel to Canada

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For three months in winter, the Washington State Ferry system closes its routes to Canada. Not enough traffic and the weather is usually too crappy for safety. They are delaying the reopening. From the Department of Transportation:

Start of state ferry service to Canada suspended until April 28 due to COVID-19 situation
Resumption of Washington State Ferries’ service between the U.S. and Canada has been pushed back to at least April 28.

The suspension of the route serving Anacortes, and Sidney, British Columbia, comes as a result of the recent closure of the Canadian border to help slow the spread of COVID-19. International service was originally scheduled to restart March 29, following its annual three-month shut down during the slower winter months.

I am very glad that my island has a bridge to the mainland...

Done for the day

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Got a chunk of work done in the garage. Also getting two more computers updated and ready to roll. Installing Windows 10 and planning two hardware upgrades for my ham radio computer.

Heading out briefly to see if a package has come in yet (one key item for a project) and then fix dinner. Beans are nice and done - did them with some good ham. Do a pot of rice when I get home.

Funny - I stopped drinking alcohol about six months ago and have not been going out at all (maybe 4-5 times) but I desire going out to socialize tonight. The forced shelter-at-home is causing part of me to dig in my heels. Maybe there should be an island rebel's association where a bunch of us could hang out in a local park, socialize, shoot the shit and drink tea/beer/other stuff at our leisure. Screw the nanny state. I know they have our interests at heart but...

And back to work

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Got some beans in the pressure cooker - having Feijoada for dinner tonight. Do some more work in the garage.

Turned out to be a nice day - warm - temps in the 50's. Spring-like.

Feeling a bit nappish though - might do an hour snooze. Decisions, decisions, decisions...

A county got called up - COVID-19

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A WA State county just asked for CERT volunteers to help with staffing their Emergency Operations Center. I do not live there but am familiar with the people involved and have been to the center 10+ times. Staying in the loop and keeping the radio turned on at all times.

Doing business in Los Angeles

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Business is good - from the Los Angeles Times:

Liquor, marijuana and guns are also popular among coronavirus hoarders
Amid widespread shortages of hand sanitizer and hand wipes in supermarkets and drug stores, people are turning to a makeshift substitute — Everclear, a brand of 120-proof grain alcohol that has been flying off the shelves of a BevMo in Culver City.

“Normally, we sell a few bottles of that stuff a week,” store manager Paul Pabich said. “But word is spreading fast that at 120 proof, or 60% alcohol, it can kill any germ there is out there. We had 24 bottles in stock on Monday, and they were all sold by Thursday.”

And:

Business was also booming at the Herbarium, a marijuana dispensary in the 900 block of North La Brea Avenue in Los Angeles. With every purchase, the store was offering free delivery and a stylish black face mask that says, “Corona Free Herbarium.”

And:

At Martin B. Retting Gun Shop in Culver City, a line of prospective customers stretched outside the door. Inside, they were shoulder to shoulder, waiting up to five hours for service. A fast-food truck was taking orders at the curb.

Maybe people will start getting serious about preparedness. Simple to do and you do not have to do it all at once. Lots of online resources.

Why? Do they have anything to hide?

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Interesting bit of news from the Daily Caller:

China Says It Will Expel American Journalists From The Country
China announced Tuesday that it will expel American journalists who work for The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post from the country.

The country also demanded that the three publications, as well as Voice of America and Time magazine, hand over information about their operations to the Chinese government, according to the NYT.

“We unequivocally condemn any action by China to expel U.S. reporters,” Marty Baron, executive editor of the Washington Post, said in a statement to the Daily Caller. “The Chinese government’s decision is particularly regrettable because it comes in the midst of an unprecedented global crisis, when clear and reliable information about the international response to covid-19 is essential. Severely limiting the flow of that information, which China now seeks to do, only aggravates the situation.”

American journalists who had press credentials “due to expire before the end of 2020” were ordered by China to “notify the Department of Information of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs within four calendar days starting from today and hand back their press cards within ten calendar days,” the NYT reported.

Do not ever forget that China is a hard-line communist nation and is a tyranny. This is where Bernie wants to take us.

Busy day today

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Took care of a couple of things. Went down to Costco in time for their 10AM opening and snagged a bag of dog food - had about four days left. They were handling it very well - a line outside and they let in 50 people at a time, reminding them to maintain social distance.

Working on the garage - taking a break for lunch.

As evidenced by this article at The Daily Wire:

‘F***’ Trump’s ‘National Day Of Prayer’: Rashida Tlaib Pushes Nasty Message On Social Media, Backtracks
As our nation takes precautions against the China-originated novel coronavirus, or COVID-19, President Donald Trump announced over the weekend that Sunday March 15 would be a National Day of Prayer, calling on all faiths to pray for protection and strength.

“It is my great honor to declare Sunday, March 15th as a National Day of Prayer,” the president announced on Twitter. “We are a Country that, throughout our history, has looked to God for protection and strength in times like these.”

“No matter where you may be, I encourage you to turn towards prayer in an act of faith. Together, we will easily PREVAIL!” Trump optimistically added.

But Ms. Tlaib:

Far-left Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) apparently took issue with Trump’s announcement, taking to her Twitter account to promote a vulgar message denigrating the National Day of Prayer from Parkland school shooting survivor and anti-gun rights advocate David Hogg.

Hogg - another one of the child warriors - the tools of the deep state. Hogg has had his day in the sunshine. Now he is just sniping from the sidelines - they are done with him and have thrown him under the bus. Look for Thunberg, Greta to receive the same treatment in 3... 2... 1... A bit more:

Seemingly addressing backlash over the re-post, Tlaib again took to Twitter to backtrack, telling followers she has “been praying through this all” and was “not” attacking prayer.

“Let me be clear as someone who has been praying through this all & as someone who attended the National Prayer Breakfast,” she wrote Monday night. “My retweet was not to be an attack on prayer. It was to bring attention to the need for meaningful action to combat this public health crisis.”

So she was pandering to her radical minority base, got called out on it and is now backpedaling as fast as her bandy little legs can carry her. No courage of convictions, it is all about optics and sound bites with these morons. They have nothing except the all-powerful narrative and I hate to break it to them but...

Out for coffee

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Working at home. Clear night yesterday so quite cold - forecast is for clouds so will kick the heater in the garage on to high before heading out. Returning the soldering iron to the UPS store too.

Taking the treasure

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A Wuhan Virus meme:

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Happy Saint Patrick's Day

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Going to be a quiet one with all the bars closed. Always was amateur hour.

I will be out wearing my rock - a piece of granite tied to a cord around my neck. I figure everyone else will be wearing a Sham rock, might as well wear a real one...

Quote of the year

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Politicians would do well to remember these words:

I favor the policy of economy, not because I wish to save money, but because I wish to save people. The men and women of this country who toil are the ones who bear the cost of the Government. Every dollar that we carelessly waste means that their life will be so much the more meager. Every dollar that we prudently save means that their life will be so much the more abundant. Economy is idealism in its most practical form.
— Calvin Coolidge
Inaugural Address, March 4, 1925

Cute word - hamsterkauf

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Got to hand it to the Germans - they come up with some really fun words. From the English edition of Deutsche Welle:

Coronavirus scare: When will 'hamsterkauf' become an English word?
Supermarkets in Germany have witnessed signs of panic buying as the new coronavirus spreads. Some English-language media are in love with the special word the Germans use for hoarding stuff, as Hardy Graupner found out.

The coronavirus scare has seen quite a number of Germans resorting to panic buying, although the chances of them really needing a lot of stuff at home over a longer period are rather slim. But that's a different story.

The point is that the Germans have a rather nice and descriptive word for hoarding stuff. They call the activity of panic buying hamsterkauf, with the corresponding verb being hamstern.

It's not too hard for people from the English-speaking world to guess its meaning. After all, they share the same word for the rodent that's used as a descriptive term in German to indicate that if you do a hamsterkauf, you want a lot of stuff — just as hamsters are eager to store as much food as they can in their cheeks. You never know, it could come in handy.

Cute and a word that is immediately understandable.

I can see it - we have not really had a serious pandemic since polio in the 1950's. Sure, swine flu was bad but not "OMFG We're all gonna die" serious. Because of this, it has become each administrations' play-toy. From Daniel Greenfield writing at Frontpage Magazine:

The CDC was Fighting Racism and Obesity Instead of Stopping Epidemics
The Centers for Disease Control has a $6.6 billion budget and one job which it messes up every time.

The last time the CDC had a serious workout was six years ago during the Ebola crisis. Back then CDC guidelines allowed medical personnel infected with Ebola to avoid a quarantine and interact with Americans until they showed undeniable symptoms of the disease. There were no protocols in place for treating the potentially infected resulting in the further spread of the disease inside the United States.

At the height of the crisis, confidence in the CDC fell to 37%. Meanwhile, CDC personnel had managed to mishandle Ebola virus samples, accidentally sending samples of the live virus to CDC labs. And the heads of the health bureaucracy blamed the lack of funding for their failure to have an Ebola vaccine.

The self-quarantine measures adopted in response to the coronavirus outbreak are partially a response to the lessons of the Ebola disaster.

But during the Ebola crisis, Democrats tried to shift responsibility from the Obama administration by blaming Republicans for cutting the CDC’s budget from $6.5 billion to $5.9 billion. Sound familiar? Where do those billions for the CDC actually go? Among other things, pushing gun control. The terrible budget deal from December allocated $25 million to the CDC and NIH to study gun violence.

During the Ebola crisis, the CDC had been spending a mere $2.6 million on gun violence studies. But the CDC has a history of wasting money on everything from a $106 million visitor's center with Japanese gardens, a $200K gym, a transgender beauty pageant, not to mention promoting bike paths.

The occasional outbreak only calls the CDC’s general incompetence to everyone’s attention. The rest of the time its incompetence, like that of other government agencies, just ticks along wasting money.

Excellent essay and a lot more at the site. Daniel calls out each administration and their "pet" projects all of which failed. We need science and not social justice. Disease Control is 2/3rds of their name.

Well crap - wrong order

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I have some electronics work in the pipeline - a project for the house and several ham radio experiments. Decided to update my soldering iron. I know - a life change... Taking slow and deep breaths here...  Have used it for 20 years at least and there are some new ones out there. One in particular came highly recomended so I sprung for one of them on Amazon (a TS80 in case you are interested).

I ordered a specific brand (SainSmart) as I am familiar with them and very happy with their quality. What was delivered was #1) - a "Smart" brand and #2) - a very bad re-pack with a damaged box.

Some seller out there tried to pull a fast one but they are not getting away with it. Grrrrrr...

Dinnertime

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After all that shopping, I felt like taking the easy route and having the last of the tacos for dinner tonight. Feijoada tomorrow.

Feeling kind of sleepy so early bedtime - doing a bit of computer hardware work. I brought three systems down from the farm on my last trip and have been upgrading them (got much better broadband down here) as well as doing a little technology refresh on one of them (the 'puter I use for my ham radio bench - SSD and some more memory - already have the components).

Washington State is essentially on lockdown so no fun and games for me. Spending the next two weeks working at home and making trips to the farm.

Pelosi tried to pull the "you need to pass it so you can see what's in it" scam again - this time with the Wuhan Virus relief act (remember kiddies, all spending legislation originates in the House of Representatives). It was brimming with pork including Federally funded abortions. Here is an excerpt from an article at PJ Media:

No, The Coronavirus Emergency Spending Bill Still Hasn't Made It to the Senate. Here's Why
In the wee hours of Saturday morning, the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 6201, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act after many negotiations between House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin. Forty Republicans voted against the bill, sparking outrage from leftists on Twitter. Yet when the Senate returned on Monday, the House had yet to turn over the emergency coronavirus bill for passage.

As it turns out, "the bill remains hung up in negotiations between Speaker Nancy Pelosi and the White House," Politico reported, citing "multiple Capitol Hill sources."

More at the site - these three paragraphs caught my eye:

Gohmert released an in-depth statement on Saturday that helped clarify what had happened.

"There was a great deal more money in the original bill this week going to things that had nothing to do with our Coronavirus national emergency – including a provision that provided for federally funded abortions," he explained. "Our President stood firm on things that needed to be in there and to take out things that did not. As a good leader does, he left the specific language of the bill to the so-called experts in Congress. However, the actual wording is too often done by staff members who have never run a business, filed a quarterly tax report, or ever had to cut expenses to stay in business."

"I was proud of the work the President did negotiating, especially calling the Speaker’s bluff when she demanded a vote on Thursday because she was going to leave and not be there on Friday. Then she said she would not be here on Saturday so we had to vote right away to pass a bill before we knew what was in it. But with this bill, President Trump made clear that he did not want to destroy small businesses in our effort to help those who could not help themselves in this crisis," Gohmert added.

Representative Louie Gohmert is a National Treasure. Hold her feet to the fire and make her do her damned job. We The People are sick of this sort of crap.

Two musical instrument companies have your back.

First Korg:

KORG will provide iKaossilator for iOS and Kaossilator for Android for free for a limited time
Schools, workplaces, and meetings worldwide have been requested to close by their respective governments and so many people are studying and working from home. To help you with a musical way to occupy your mind we have decided to make the Kaossilator app for iOS and Android free of charge for a limited time (iOS version : through March 31, 2020. Android version : From March 13 to March 20, 2020).

The Kaossilator apps are tools that let you create music by using, moving and swiping a single finger – and you don’t need any musical knowledge to get started. Many users worldwide have been enjoying their Kaossilator app for many years because it is fun, educational and satisfying!

And second, my favorite, Moog (iOS only ☹):

Minimoog Model D Synthesizer
The Minimoog Model D App is a mobile transmutation of the world’s first portable synthesizer, the Minimoog Model D®. Optimized for use on all 64-bit iOS devices, anyone can jump in and play with over 160 included presets or lay fingers to the controls and begin exploring vast magical realms of creative potential.

Nice of them to do this - lots of people self-quarantining.

A class act - Louis Vuitton

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I have never seen the fascination with fashion but I respect it as a big business. Supports a lot of people all up and down a very long food chain. Ran into this article at The Beeb:

Coronavirus: Louis Vuitton owner to start making hand sanitiser
Louis Vuitton owner LVMH will use its perfume production lines to start making hand sanitiser to protect people against the coronavirus outbreak.

The luxury goods maker says it wants to help tackle a nationwide shortage of the anti-viral products across France.

"These gels will be delivered free of charge to the health authorities," LVMH announced on Sunday.

Very well done Louis Vuitton. Very well done.

Now that was interesting - shopping

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I was running some errands today and wanted to get some black beans. I use them a lot for cooking and ran through 25 pounds in the last year or so. My bucket is empty. Still have quite a lot of other dry peas, beans and grains to eat so well stocked but had a hankering for some Feijoada for dinner.

WinCo was picked bare. The Food Coop was picked bare. A local restaurant wholesale supply place was picked bare. The local QFC was picked bare. My supermarket (three miles from the house - also my coffee and post office place) had about eight one-pound bags remaining. I bought two - one for dinner and one for backup.

Was in a bit of a hurry so didn't take any photos but it was surreal - shelves empty.

Coffee and another day in paradise

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Heading out for a little bit...

A simple question - immigration

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Very good point - why do we not see this happening?

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Chilly but no frost

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Was clear last night but not enough cooling to leave a frost on the ground. Spring is coming.

Couple projects around the house today plus starting to get ready for taxes and take care of some bills.

And that is it for the evening

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Another busy day tomorrow - feeling tired so heading off to bed. Making some tea first and watch some YouTube.

Nice and clear out so probably looking at a hard frost tomorrow morning.

Most restaurants are barely keeping afloat. Any interruption in their operation would be fatal. And here it comes thanks to our clueless soon-to-be EX governor (hope hope hope!!!!!) From the office of he who shall soon be unemployed:

Inslee statement on statewide shutdown of restaurants, bars and limits on size of gatherings expanded
Gov. Jay Inslee released a statement tonight that further expands protections against COVID-19.

“Given the explosion of COVID-19 in our state and globally, I will sign a statewide emergency proclamation tomorrow to temporarily shut down restaurants, bars and entertainment and recreational facilities.

“Restaurants will be allowed to provide take-out and delivery services but no in-person dining will be permitted.

“The ban will not apply to grocery stores and pharmacies. Other retail outlets will have reduced occupancy.

“Additionally, all gatherings with over 50 participants are prohibited and all gatherings under 50 participants are prohibited unless previously announced criteria for public health and social distancing are met.

“These are very difficult decisions, but hours count here and very strong measures are necessary to slow the spread of the disease. I know there will be significant economic impacts to all our communities and we are looking at steps to help address those challenges.

“Tonight, after consultations with me and with the Department of Health, King County announced that they will be taking these actions immediately. King County has been the hotbed of this outbreak and has the largest population center in the state. I have spoken to Executive Dow Constantine and I applaud their decision to act quickly. We will do a joint media announcement with more details tomorrow morning.”

Going out to eat is the poster-child for Implied Consent. You know there is a pandemic out there, you know that you may catch the Wuhan Flu but you decide to eat out anyway. Therefore, there is no claim against the restaurant if you get sick.

This is just a stupid decision and one that will hurt or kill many small local restaurants. It is Kabuki Theater instead of proper pandemic management. Doing something for the sake of doing something. Something that sounds good instead of something that actually does good. The large chains will tighten their belts and recover. I wonder how much money Gov. Inslee gets from them in campaign contributions...

UPDATE: Just checked here (Public Disclosure Comission) and he has gotten money from two branches of the SEIU union which is food and hospitality and from the United Food and Commercial Workers union. This is just the first page - a lot more here.

Hamming it up - radio active

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Been monitoring the local frequencies and there have been check-ins and a few basic drills but nothing involving actual work. Hope that it stays that way. The county seems to be pretty proactive and the US government is doing an incredible job - much better than the swine flu of 2009-10.

And it's Hillary in 3... 2...

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From PJ Media:

Joe Biden Commits to Picking a 'Woman' (?) as His Running Mate
The Democrats' obsession with identity politics is well known. For months they celebrated the diversity of the candidates running for the Democratic Party nomination. Now that it's basically down to two old white guys, it was easy to guess that even though the party rejected the "diverse" candidates to top the ticket, the eventual nominee, be it Joe Biden or Bernie Sanders, would use the selection of their running mate as an opportunity to prove their pro-diversity credentials.

Both Biden and Sanders had an opportunity to address the issue of who they'd pick as their running mate. Biden was asked, "Just to be clear, you just committed here to tonight, that your running mate, if you get the nomination, will be a woman?"

"Yes," he said.

Biden has to know that he has mental issues - you do not rise to that level of power and keep it for so long without having some basic level of street smarts. He chooses Hillary as VP, he resigns from the Presidency for health issues, she pardons his extended family for their corruption and money grabbing and we are back to the deep state, large and in charge again. Sigh...

Vitamin D supplementation

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Always been a big fan of taking it - usually do about 10,000 units/day during the winter tapering off to 5,000/day in summer. Feel better and it has a lot of benefits. Add respiratory health to the list. From E. M. Smith writing at Musings from the Chiefio:

More Vit-D & Immunity Antiviral
This is an interesting video from 7 months ago. It details how Vit-D activates immunity, including an antiviral protein we produce. (Cathelicidin) Talks about how the nasal mucosa have an enzyme to activte, then use, Vitamin D. How it acts as an inhibitor of pro-inflammatory cytokines and inhibits the cytotoxic effects of T cells and B cells. (Slide at 8 min) Like maybe that young Chinese M.D. who first called out Covid-19 then died of it might have had a better chance had he not been indoors treating patients all the time, then tossed into a Chinese dungeon for interrogation… /snark; it also helps with allergies.

I think this goes a long way toward explaining the cyclical mature of Influenza and “winter colds”. His chart of vit-D levels by region, with the middle east low, might also help to explain the degree of outbreak in Iran. Covered head to toe in cloth year round, and indoors, now, to great extent. So a low vit-D level and lowered immunity. Below 20 ng/ml is very deficient, and the Middle East has 90% of their population below that level. (Slide at 9 min.) Then a bit of a hoot when Australian dematologists are at 83%. Sunscreen much? (Slide 10:40) At 12 minutes walks through a series of papers / references. I was especially interested in the slide at 20 minutes showing IL-5 cytokine down modulated from about 550 pg/ml to just under 100 pg/ml, and “essentially non-allergic”. The airway contriction vs. not constricted IMHO has significance for Covid-19 treatement.

Good stuff - we have some incredible people working 24/7 on this.

There is quite the stretch of dead air (40+ minutes) at the beginning so here is the link to the start of the event.

A pause in the day

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Somewhat productive day today. Not accomplishing everything but happy with what is getting done.

The hummingbirds are out in force so making some more nectar. I refresh the feeders once/week as they will get funky if left longer but the current batch of nectar only lasted about four days and it is almost gone. This is with three 16oz feeders. Very popular site...

Another 90 minutes and then dinnertime.

The great toilet paper stampede

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This is from 2016 but very apt for today. With all the toilet paper flying off the shelves these days, we hearken back to yesteryear with this advertisement from the Quilted Northern Toilet Paper company:

Lazy morning but off to work I go

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Lazed around this morning but the day is nice and warm and I have stuff that needs to get done.

Back in a while. Tacos again for dinner tonight.

A perfect name for the job - Aptronym

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From InfoGalactic:

Aptronym - rarely-encountered neologisms for the concept of nominative determinism, used for a personal name aptly or peculiarly suited to its owner; essentially, when someone's name describes what they are or what they do.

The entry gives some examples:

Add to this list - from Arab News - meet Dr. Corona Rintawan

Indonesia picks Dr. Corona to lead coronavirus response
JAKARTA: It seems he was born for the job. Emergency medicine expert Dr. Corona Rintawan is heading a task force set up by Indonesia’s second-largest Muslim organization, Muhammadiyah, to contain the spread of coronavirus.

“The Muhammadiyah COVID-19 Command Center (MCCC) is set up to consolidate all Muhammadiyah assets in an integrated effort to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus,” Rintawan told Arab News on Thursday.

Rintawan was appointed to lead the MCCC, an interdisciplinary task force with 13 experts educating the public on how to stop the spread of the virus.

His emergency experience includes being in medical teams responding to Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines in 2013 and the 2015 Nepal earthquake. He also took part in a humanitarian mission for the Rohingya in Myanmar in 2017.

“We are taking a proactive approach to assist the government in early diagnoses or early treatment for patients that show initial symptoms of infection,” Rintawan said.

His naming story is cute:

Asked about his name, the doctor said his parents would name their children in alphabetical order. Being the third, his name had to start with “c.”

“There was no such thing as baby name books at that time, so they decided to take my name from the Toyota Corona car, which was a popular model back in the 1970s, and as they also found that it means a crown, which symbolizes something good,” he said.

Right place, right time. Perfect name.

A fun little website: You're getting old

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Just go here: You're getting old

Ides of March

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March 15th

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Glorious day today

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Sunshine and getting nice and warm. Working in the garage today but with the door open and the heater off. Nice change.

Coffee first - a man has his priorities...

Was this intentional? From Newsmax:

Chinese Reporter With Temperature Denied Access to White House Briefing
Hours after it happened on Saturday, White House correspondents were still discussing intently what several called “the incident:” a Chinese correspondent from the state-run CGTN television network was the lone reporter barred from a White House briefing on that afternoon after he was found to be running a high temperature.

The taking of temperatures for reporters as a requirement to enter the briefing as well as the refusal of admission for the Chinese correspondent made as much news as anything said at the briefing by Vice President Mike Pence and the members of Coronavirus Task Force, including a short appearance by President Trump.

Before allowed entrance to the White House Briefing Room, correspondents were required to have their temperatures taken by someone from the White House Physician’s office.

All reporters passed the “test” except the correspondent from the English-language CGTN. According to several reports, he was tested three times but each time was found to be running a temperature of 100.4 degrees—far above the 98.6 degrees that the Center for Disease Control considers normal.

Questioned by reporters, Pence and other members of the Task Force all said they had their temperatures taken before they entered the Briefing Room.

100 is more than a bit high - something is going on and the guy had to know that he was not well. Was this intentional and what disease does he have?

Got nothing tonight

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Tacos were delicious. Had a reasonably productive day. Feeling sleepy.

All I have to say...

Fun times for Hillary?

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From Washington Examiner:

Hillary Clinton asks appeals court to overturn order for deposition about email server and Benghazi
Hillary Clinton asked an appeals court on Friday to overturn a judge's order for her to appear for a sworn deposition about her use of a private email server and the 2012 Benghazi terrorist attack.

The case stems from a Freedom of Information Act lawsuit brought by the conservative watchdog Judicial Watch against the former secretary of state. Earlier this month, U.S. District Court Judge Royce Lamberth ruled, “The Court agrees with Judicial Watch — it is time to hear directly from Secretary Clinton.” The judicial opinion also ordered former Clinton chief of staff Cheryl Mills to be deposed.

Clinton's legal team responded with an 83-page petition for a writ of mandamus filed with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, calling the district ruling outrageous and asking the appeals court to order the lower court to correct the ruling.

The legal team for Clinton said reversing the order “is warranted because Judicial Watch’s impending depositions of Secretary Clinton and Ms. Mills are inappropriate, unnecessary, and a clear abuse of discretion.”

Judicial Watch President Tom Fitton said, “This desperate act is yet another attempt by the Clinton machine to delay truth and accountability for her email conduct and how it impacted the people’s ‘right to know’ under FOIA.”

I really hope that Judicial Watch prevails - they do excellent work. Hillary needs to be held accountable for her incompetence and her corruption.

And back home for the day

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Successful shopping run. Costco was jammed but they were implementing some really good practices - single line heading in and asking people to maintain a 6' distance. None of the stupid Kabuki theater with sanitizing wipes on the shopping carts. 90% of it is airborne so no need. Picked up my twelve cases of TP (not).

Fixing tacos for dinner tonight - have not had any for a while. Been eating vege for a number of months but backslide every so often - picked up some nice looking flank steak at Costco and will charcoal grill that for tonight's meal. Get some black beans into the pressure cooker and chop up an onion, dice some avocado and that is a great meal...

Finishing off a couple things in the garage first.

Done with lunch - to work...

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Running a few errands - picking up some wood for a garage project as well as returning something to Harbor Freight.

The travel ban - Wuhan Virus

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They just added the U.K. and Ireland to the travel ban - from CNBC:

US adds UK and Ireland to coronavirus travel restrictions, Trump considers domestic travel curbs
The U.S. will add the U.K. and Ireland to sweeping travel restrictions as the coronavirus spreads, President Donald Trump said Saturday, as he discouraged the American public from unnecessary travel.

Very good move - nip this in the bud. The President also declared this Sunday as a National Day of Prayer:

Prayer has great power. I know some people who meditate - I do that as well as prayer. We are all tapping into the same etheric forces - just taking different paths to the same destination.

From Breitbart:

De Blasio: Coronavirus ‘Is a Case for’ ‘Nationalization of Crucial Factories and Industries’
On Saturday’s broadcast of MSNBC’s “AM Joy,” New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) stated that the coronavirus outbreak is a case for “a nationalization of crucial factories and industries that could produce the medical supplies to prepare this country for what we need.”

De Blasio said, “This is a war-like situation. We’re in a wartime scenario with a Mar-a-Lago attitude being used by the federal government, right? It’s so laid back, and I don’t understand it. And by the way, testing, how about ventilators? Where is the federal government making sure that our hospitals have the ventilators we’re going to need? Where is the federal government when it comes to surgical masks, getting them distributed where they need? This is a case for a nationalization, literally a nationalization of crucial factories and industries that could produce the medical supplies to prepare this country for what we need. Hand sanitizer, people are going crazy, I don’t blame them, trying to get hand sanitizer.”

He added, “There should be a national approach to ensuring max — every factory that can make hand sanitizer should be on 24/7 shifts and the distribution should be go[ing] to the places that need it most.”

This is straight out of the communist playbook. Want to see what happens when a centralized government nationalizes industries? Just look at Cuba. Look at Venezuela. Look at China's history (200,000,000 people dead). Look at Russia's history (only 100,000,000 people dead there).

In a just world, Warren Wilhelm will get his a** kicked to the curb next election. The pendulum is swinging back and people are seeing what capitalism can do for everyone - the rising tide that lifts all boats.

...and one who has lost its fear of people. From the London Daily Mail:

Planet of the apes! Hundreds of hungry monkeys swarm across Thai street as 'rival gangs' fight over food after tourists who normally feed them stay away because of coronavirus
Hundreds of hungry monkeys were seen fighting over a single banana in Thailand after coronavirus caused a huge drop in the numbers of tourists who feed them.

The primates are normally well fed by tourists in Lopburi, central Thailand, but visitors have plummeted because of the COVID-19 virus which is gripping the world.

The animals were reported to be part of two 'rival gangs' made up of the monkeys who dwell in the city and those from the temple areas who were fighting over food.

Footage shows hundreds of monkeys crossing a road and then chasing a single monkey which has got hold of a banana.

As one of the commentors said: "We're only three meals away from anarchy ourselves."

Maybe time to think about thining that herd before nature does it for us with unknown consequences.

Back in a bit

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The coffee is calling my name...

Happy Pi Day

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Today is 3/14 or the first three digits of Pi - 3.1415926535 or thereabouts (used to remember about 20 digits)

More of an observation than a celebration.

Today is also Albert Einstein's Birthday (03/14/1879)

A celebration more than an observation.

Buy cheap, sell dear

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Meanwhile, as the Wuhan Virus is occupying people's thoughts, there is an oil war going on. President Trump is on it.
From Breitbart:

Trump Orders Department of Energy to Replenish U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve in Coronavirus Era
President Donald Trump announced during his press conference on Friday on the coronavirus outbreak that the United States will be replenishing its Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) to ensure the nation’s energy security.

“Based on the price of oil, I’ve also instructed the Secretary of Energy to purchase at a very good price large quantities of crude oil for storage in the U.S. strategic reserve,” Trump said at the press conference in the White House Rose Garden.

“We’re going to fill it right up to the top, saving the American taxpayer billions and billions of dollars, helping our oil industry [and furthering] that wonderful goal — which we’ve achieved, which nobody thought was possible — of energy independence,” Trump said.

Trump’s announcement follows market turmoil in the international market when Russia and Saudi Arabia’s negotiations recently broke down and the Saudis announced they were increasing production.

The Saudis do not like that the US is now a net exporter of oil so they are artificially lowering their price to below what it costs our frackers to produce. Fortunately, our government has stepped in with cheap loans - this war is not sustainable for anyone and the Saudis have to blink sometime. Meanwhile, we are taking advantage of the glut of cheap oil to top off the tanks. National security is a fantastic thing...

Maintaining the narrative

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When you have no accomplishments to actually point to, the narrative becomes paramount. From FOX News:

China reframes coronavirus narrative, touts Xi's accomplishments despite bodies piling up
Even as coronavirus casualties piled up in China, President Xi Jinping spent the week trying to change the narrative -- even touring Wuhan, ground zero of the outbreak.

His victory lap was intended to send a strong message to the rest of the world that China, the Communist Party and its people had beaten a global pandemic he once labeled a "devil."

The tailored-for-TV tour was broadcast globally and designed to show a seemingly successful China muscle its way through a monster health crisis led by Xi at a time when international efforts to contain the virus have fallen short of expectations.

A perfect example of propaganda:

Propaganda is a form of communication, often biased or misleading in nature, aimed at influencing and altering the attitude of a population toward some cause, position or political agenda in an effort to form a consensus to a standard set of belief patterns.

Propaganda is information that is not impartial and used primarily to influence an audience and further an agenda, often by presenting facts selectively (perhaps lying by omission) to encourage a particular synthesis, or using loaded messages to produce an emotional rather than a rational response to the information presented.

China is still a communist state - this is the end game of what people like Bernie want to do to the United States.
Just say no...

I am in heaven

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From America's newspaper of record - The Babylon Bee:

Nation's Nerds Wake Up In Utopia Where Everyone Stays Inside, Sports Are Canceled, Social Interaction Forbidden
The nation's nerds woke up in a utopia this morning, one where everyone stays inside, sporting events are being canceled, and all social interaction is forbidden.

All types of nerds, from social introverts to hardcore PC gamers, welcomed the dawn of this new era, privately from their own homes.

"I have been waiting my whole life for this moment," said Ned Pendleton, 32 -- via text message, of course -- as he fired up League of Legends on his beefy gaming PC. "They told me to take up a sport and that the kids playing basketball and stuff were gonna be way more successful than us nerds who played Counter-Strike at LAN parties every weekend."

"They all laughed at me. Well, who's laughing now?"

To prepare for the onslaught of the deadly disease, nerds are changing absolutely nothing and are expected to rise up to rule the post-Coronavirus society, as they are the ones best adjusted to being sheltered in a basement, garage, or room for many days at a time marathoning Halo, Half-Life, The Legend of Zelda, Red Dead Redemption, or Horizon Zero Dawn. They're also ready for any post-apocalyptic wasteland, as they've played many, many hours of Fallout and are adept at killing bloatflies and collecting bottlecaps.

Of course, many nerds are running out of hygienic products, but they say that's "not an issue."

Hey - I resemble that remark... Nerd from way back.

Talk about a good night's sleep

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Solid sound sleep - the new bed is fantastic. Feeling very refreshed and ready to accomplish a lot today.

Heading out in a while for coffee and the dump. Storage unit too - helping a local artist with photographing their work and have some fun lighting stuff for macro photography.

Quick surf around the internet first...

In this together - our community

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Got an email - the local community center is working with the local grocery store to do delivery three times/week. You email your order before noon, you get a return email with the cost and a number to call with your credit card. The goods are delivered that afternoon.

This is all volunteer - some really great people on this island.

Details are coming out regarding Andrew Gillum and his recent soirée. Jennifer Van Laar has the goods - I'll let you just go there and read for yourself - quite the selection of photos:

Man Who OD’d in Hotel Room With Andrew Gillum Is a Well-Known Gay Escort
Early Friday morning, former Florida gubernatorial candidate Andrew Gillum’s “friend,” Travis Dyson, overdosed on crystal meth in a Miami Beach hotel room and was rushed to the hospital by rescue personnel. Gillum was too intoxicated to communicate with investigators at the time, but later returned to “his residence” on his own accord.

The link is not "family friendly" so not excerpting anything more. Another fine upstanding citizen called to public service.

Thai food hit the spot

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Finishing up setting up the bed frame - sleep on it tonight. The mattress base was too tall and the frame has two options for height so needed to do a partial disassembly to get it right. Looking forward to a great sleep tonight.

I love the futon (slept on one for many many years) but the mattress is a lot more comfortable.

Sucks to be you - Peter Wehner

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Peter Wehner? He writes (at least he used to) for Atlantic Magazine. Do not know if he is still there after this morning's howler of an article - from Don Surber:

The corona virus panic is over

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This morning, The Atlantic declared, "The Trump Presidency Is Over." Never Trumper Peter Wehner wrote, "Donald Trump is shrinking before our eyes.

"The corona virus is quite likely to be the Trump presidency’s inflection point, when everything changed, when the bluster and ignorance and shallowness of America’s 45th president became undeniable, an empirical reality, as indisputable as the laws of science or a mathematical equation.

"It has taken a good deal longer than it should have, but Americans have now seen the con man behind the curtain. The president, enraged for having been unmasked, will become more desperate, more embittered, more unhinged. He knows nothing will be the same. His administration may stagger on, but it will be only a hollow shell. The Trump presidency is over."

5 hours later, the only thing dead was the premise of the article.

President Donald John Trump this afternoon took ownership of corona virus at a press conference. In so doing, he restored America's faith in itself and its ability to conquer an illness.

Much more at the site. President Trump took ownership. This is something that Democrats have not seen before so they are unfamiliar with the process. They should try it sometime - it works.

Thai food

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Got a hankering for some Thai food. Put in a productive day so time for a treat.

Library was crowded - a lot of people checking out a lot of books. There was one kid in his mid to late teens who obviously had some kind of upper-respiratory illness - sniffling and sneezing. As soon as I noticed him, I bailed. Gave him the stink-eye first. Not very smart.

Serious executive overreach

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From Decatur, Illinois station WAND:

Executive order in Champaign could include banning sale of firearms, ammunition and alcohol
Champaign Mayor Deborah Frank Feinen has issued an executive order declaring an emergency in the city.

City officials said the emergency is related to the COVID-19, which is anticipated to cause an impact on the health of community members. Champaign Municipal Code allows the mayor to declare an emergency for a limited time.

Included in the executive order are ordinances that would give the city extraordinary powers to the Mayor.

    • Violating parts of the Open Meetings Act
    • Ban sale of firearms and ammunition
    • Ban sale of any alcohol
    • Closing of all bars, taverns, liquor stores, etc
    • Ban sale or giving away of gasoline or other liquid flammable or combustible products in any container other than a gasoline tank permanently fixed to a motor vehicle
    • Direct the shutoff of power, water, gas, etc
    • Take possession of private property and obtain full title to same
    • Prohibit or restrict ingress and egress to and from the City

"The executive order allows the city to be flexible to properly respond to the emergency needs of our community. None of the options will necessarily will be implemented but are available in order to protect the welfare and safety of our community if needed," Jeff Hamilton the City of Champaign's Communications Manger told WAND-TV.

And of course:

There are no confirmed COVID-19 cases in central Illinois as of Thursday evening.

Just your usual Democrat/Socalist power grab. Move along folks, nothing to see here.

Library and a few errands

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The library is shutting down for a couple of weeks starting today at 6PM. Got a stack of books to return so heading out. Also cruising the shelves to see what there is to keep me occupied for the next 10-20 days. I shudder to think of not having anything to read...

President Trump's press conference

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Available now online from FOX News. The first 20 minutes are dead air so here is the link to the start at YouTube

Great, to the point and lots of information. I like that he had all the leaders from the various health industries and large retailers there to point out what they are doing. Working together for a common cause - this only makes us stronger.

What I just said - error rates

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From Gateway Pundit:

Brazilian Leader Jair Bolsonaro TESTS POSITIVE for Coronavirus… Update: Is Awaiting a Second Test to Confirm the News — WAS WITH TRUMP LAST WEEKEND! Update: Second Test NEGATIVE

The headline says it all. The test had a high error rate and Bolsonaro's results were, in fact, in error.

Not good for anyone and especially not good when setting public policy and dealing with world leaders.

Press conference

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Sounds really good so far - very rapid mobilization. I could not imagine it being done any better. What is also really good is that the major retailers are working together and not competing. This is all being done for the benefit of the United States citizens.

An interesting comment - some other nations were able to roll out tests for the disease but they have error rates of several percent. Not a good thing. The tests being distributed here are less than one percent.

I am starting to monitor some of the emergency management frequencies for any updates. Not expecting to be called but ready if needed.

Really happy that we have actual leadership in this nation. The Democrats are be-clowning themselves trying to use this for political gain. Say goodbye to the House in about 200 days - cannot happen soon enough...

Something to remember:

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Back to work

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Got a lot on my plate - enough goofing off...

No laughing matter

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A coronavirus joke - cute and true:

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Nothing but the best and brightest

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From Star Political:

Democrat Andrew Gillum Involved in Crystal Meth Overdose Incident Last Night in Miami Hotel
Late last night Democrat and former FLORIDA Gubernatorial Candidate Andrew Gillum was involved in a crystal meth overdose incident at a Miami hotel.

The report originated from Candice Owens.  Owen’s tweeted in part: “BREAKING: Democrat Andrew Gillum was involved in a crystal meth overdose incident last night in a Miami hotel. Orgy suspected, but unconfirmed.”

Much more at the site - links to police records. Looks like the Democrats are upholding their longstanding tradition of being scandal-free and above moral reproach.

Should be fun - noon my time

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President Trump is hosting a news conference today. Planning to watch it.

He had some choice words for the CDC earlier:

So true... Fortunately, we have some adults in the room now.

Coffee and starting the day

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Heading out for coffee and a few errands.  Working at home today - playing with some molding (color and finish) as well as more quality time in the garage (looking good).

The horror

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Got an email that the local library was shutting down this afternoon for the forseeable future.

Got a couple of items to return - will also be picking up a week or two of new reading material...

The local community center is closed, our local CERT and preparedness groups are canceling their training sessions. We have not been deployed for anything but keeping the phone handy in that event.

Back in 2009, there was none of this for the H1N1 Swine Flu and there were about 18,000 fatalities throughout the entire US population - all age groups. It was not a media circus then because that would reflect badly on the administration. Can't deviate from the narrative...

Heading off to Youtube and then to bed. Nothing catches my eye on the internet.

Social distancing in one photo

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Authorities are advocating that people distance themselves from others to limit the transmission of COVID-19

A perfect meme:

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A 15 minute education

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Why people are fleeing California - go here: Fleeing California

Sobering - a perfect example of Democrat rule. Even 15 years ago, it was prosperous and a wonderful place to visit.

COVID-19 in Iran

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Their leadership depends too much on theology and not enough on science. From The Washington Post:

Coronavirus burial pits so vast they’re visible from space
Two days after Iran declared its first cases of the novel coronavirus — in what would become one of the largest outbreaks of the illness outside of China — evidence of unusual activity appeared at a cemetery near where the infections emerged.

At the Behesht-e Masoumeh complex in Qom, about 80 miles south of Tehran, the excavation of a new section of the graveyard began as early as Feb. 21, satellite images show, and then rapidly expanded as the virus spread. By the end of the month, two large trenches — their lengths totaling 100 yards — were visible at the site from space.

According to expert analysis, video testimony and official statements, the graves were dug to accommodate the rising number of virus victims in Qom.

Life in the 9th century.

As it starts - Wuhan Virus

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Was at the laundromat washing my comforter and two large blankets when I got a text message. The county is starting to mobilize volunteer emergency workers. Ham radio, CERT, etc... Waiting for emails. Glad I have done the training.

The EU was a scam for some rich people to get even richer and for the politically powerful to consolidate their power and to make it greater. It was never about the benefit to the nation states. From Washington Examiner:

‘Not a single EU country’ responded to Italian plea for help with coronavirus
A top Italian official knocked the European Union for leaving Italy’s plea for medical assistance unanswered while the coronavirus outbreak cripples the country.

Italy’s permanent representative to the EU, Maurizio Massari, wrote an op-ed in Politico on Tuesday asking for aid from EU members. The Italian official said that while the EU has ignored Italy’s requests for aid, China has begun assisting Italy bilaterally.

"Italy, the European country struck hardest by the coronavirus, has done everything it can to contain and manage the epidemic," Massari wrote. "We must ensure, under EU coordination, the supply of the necessary medical equipment and its redistribution among those countries and regions most in need. Today, this means Italy; tomorrow, the need could be elsewhere."

"Italy has already asked to activate the European Union Mechanism of Civil Protection for the supply of medical equipment for individual protection," Massari added. "But, unfortunately, not a single EU country responded to the Commission’s call. Only China responded bilaterally. Certainly, this is not a good sign of European solidarity."

BREXIT is the first of a long chain of events leading to the dissolution of the EU. A bad idea and an even worse implementation.

A pandemic goes case, case, case, cluster, cluster, ka-boom. We do not want the ka-boom.

One of WA State's clusters is in the town of Stanwood. You pass through Stanwood when you drive on to the island. From Seattle station KOMO:

Statewide death toll from coronavirus rises to 30
The statewide death toll from the coronavirus climbed to 30 on Wednesday, after a third Snohomish County man died along with three others in King County, health officials said.

The Snohomish County man, who is in his 80s, was one of three residents of the Josephine Caring Community in Stanwood who previously were confirmed to have the virus and were taken to a local hospital.

No further details were available about the three additional King County deaths.

So far, 26 people have died from COVID-19 in King County, three in Snohomish County and one in Grant County.

The number of confirmed cases in Washington state is now 366, according to new numbers posted Wednesday by the state Department of Health.

See how this plays out over the next 30 days. Feeling just fine here.

Pure schedenfreude - from Doug Giles' Clash Daily:

Imam Who Said Coronavirus Was ‘Allah’s Punishment’ On China For Treatment Of Muslims…
There’s a reason it’s never smart to claim bad things happen to someone else because ‘they deserve it’…

It’s a risky game to claim that God is smiting the heathen when a contagion sweeps through a foreign country. Because in today’s hyper-connected world, contagions can travel faster than you might think.

For all this Iranian Imam’s finger-pointing at China as the object of divine wrath, it is beyond ironic that one of the early hotspots for Wuhan CoronaVirus is — Iran. Even Iran’s Parliament was hit with casualties.

And now?

Now the Imam himself has contracted it.

Ruh-roh.

Pure comedy gold - much more at the site. Links and video clip. Wonder what his sins are?

Let's see... You hire a computer security company to find out if you have security issues, they find out that you do and that they are pretty egregious. What do you do? If you are Los Angeles, this - from Info Security Magazine:

Los Angeles Utility Accused of Cybersecurity Coverup
The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power has been accused of deliberately keeping widespread gaps in its cybersecurity a secret from regulators in a large-scale coverup involving the city's mayor.

The allegations were made by Ardent Cyber Solutions LLC, a company hired by the Department of Water and Power (DWP) in April 2019 to perform cybersecurity work.

In a 10-page claim filed against the city earlier this year, Ardent states that it uncovered an "extremely high number of unpatched vulnerabilities" in the company's "corporate IT network."

Please note here: An unpatched vulnerability is a situation where the IT Vendor has become aware of a security issue either through their own testing or through a customer complaint. They have located the issue and developed a repair for the issue and have notified all of their other customers so that they can update their own systems. Doing this requires some level of awareness of the customer's (City of L.A. in this case) IT staff and a bit of proactive accountability on their part.

According to Ardent, DWP board president Mel Levine and DWP’s senior executives were informed of the security issues by email on August 12, 2019. But rather than address the issues, Levine, the DWP, and city officials made “false statements and failed to disclose material facts” in a bid to cover them up.

In the claim, Ardent states that city officials and DWP staff "acted to conceal these facts from federal and state regulators, bond rating agencies, purchasers of municipal securities issued by the LADWP and the public at large."

It is further alleged that Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti personally ordered the cancellation of Ardent's DWP contract on August 12, 2019, as a “retaliatory measure” after the company alerted officials to the utility's cybersecurity problems.

And this is not the first time with the Department of Water and Power:

The DWP headquarters were raided by the FBI in August last year as part of a probe into the city's handling of litigation that sprung from the bungled rollout of a new DWP billing system. No one was arrested or charged in connection with the raid.

No accountability, unelected bureaucrats in charge of the administration, culture of corruption. Sounds like a wonderful place to work... Tip of the hat to Computer Security guru Bruce Schneier for the link.

And another day in paradise

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Looks like a glorious day today - working at home getting the music computer workstation set up and finishing setting up the new bed. Looking forward to sleeping in it tonight. Also putting in some more quality time in the garage - that place is starting to be organised.

Late start to the day - could not get to sleep until midnight last night...

First death in the USA and now, first diagnosis in Congress. From Politico:

Staffer in Sen. Maria Cantwell’s D.C. office tests positive for coronavirus
A staff member in Sen. Maria Cantwell's Washington D.C. office has been diagnosed with coronavirus — the first known confirmed case of coronavirus on Capitol Hill.

Cantwell will close her offices in D.C and Seattle and her staff will work remotely. The Washington State Democrat is asking that additional staffers who came in contact with the individual be tested.

Shutting down Congress would not be a bad thing at all for several reasons...

Going to watch this - UPDATE

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President Trump is going to address the nation in 30 minutes - Wuhan Virus.

Should be interesting to see what the progressive spin doctors will run up...

UPDATE:

Short, sweet and to the point - a great ten minutes:

From the World Health Organization:

WHO Director-General's opening remarks at the media briefing on COVID-19 - 11 March 2020
In the past two weeks, the number of cases of COVID-19 outside China has increased 13-fold, and the number of affected countries has tripled.

There are now more than 118,000 cases in 114 countries, and 4,291 people have lost their lives.

Thousands more are fighting for their lives in hospitals.

In the days and weeks ahead, we expect to see the number of cases, the number of deaths, and the number of affected countries climb even higher.

WHO has been assessing this outbreak around the clock and we are deeply concerned both by the alarming levels of spread and severity, and by the alarming levels of inaction.

We have therefore made the assessment that COVID-19 can be characterized as a pandemic.

Pandemic is about as serious as it can get.

Time for dinner

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Still feels like mid-afternoon but remembered the time shift so eating at the proper time today.

Need to finish unpacking the truck. Put the bed frame together but the frame plus the mattress base is too tall.

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Just a wee bit too high - might be fun and 'useful' for some activities but getting in and out to sleep is a chore.

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The offending bases - listed them for free on local media & Craigslist. To the dump this weekend if no takers.

From the Washington State Department of Transportation:

SR 20 - North Cascades Highway
On Tuesday, March 10, the avalanche control team traveled to Washington Pass to evaluate the condition of the snow pack and review the extended forecast to determine a safe time to begin the spring clearing.

This work is now scheduled to start Monday, March 23 at Early Winters Campground on the east side, followed by a March 30 start near Diablo on the west side. This work takes about six weeks. Progress updates will be shared here, on social media, and through email.

I miss Tootsie and her Cinnamon Rolls - never made it to the opening day but she is legend. Passed away in 2017.

Now this will be fun - a cold blast

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I thought that we were supposed to be worried about the global warming? From Seattle meteorologist Cliff Mass:

A Cold Wave and Some Lowland Snow Will Hit the Northwest Starting Friday
An unusual, and potentially damaging, mid-March cold blast will hit our region over the weekend. Cold enough that there are concerns about crops in eastern Washington, particularly cherries.

The sea level pressure and lower-atmosphere temperatures for 11 PM Friday (below) shows very cold air (purple colors) over BC and air cold enough to snow (blue colors) moving into eastern WA. Importantly, a tight low center is found along the northern Oregon coast. That will guarantee snow for someone west of the Cascades, depending on exactly the trajectory of the low.

More at the site - should be interesting... Got a lot starting to wake up out of dormancy here.

Heh - COVID-19

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Two memes:

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This recursive plague - coronavirus

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Recursion: Recursion is the process of repeating items in a self-similar way. For instance, when the surfaces of two mirrors are exactly parallel with each other, the nested images that occur are a form of infinite recursion. The term has a variety of meanings specific to a variety of disciplines ranging from linguistics to logic. The most common application of recursion is in mathematics and computer science, in which it refers to a method of defining functions in which the function being defined is applied within its own definition. Specifically, this defines an infinite number of instances (function values), using a finite expression that for some instances may refer to other instances, but in such a way that no loop or infinite chain of references can occur. The term is also used more generally to describe a process of repeating objects in a self-similar way.

From Quartz:

A scientific meeting on coronaviruses was cancelled due to coronavirus
The latest event to be cancelled as a result of the spread of the novel coronavirus is, ironically, a scientific meeting on coronaviruses.

On March 9, Nido2020, the official meeting of the International Nidovirus Symposium, was postponed to 2021. The meeting, which happens only once every three years, was set to take place this May 10 to 14 in the Netherlands.

“We started noticing that people were hesitating to register due to all the uncertainty,” said Marjolein Kikkert, a microbiologist at the Leiden University Medical Center who was leading the conference’s planning committee, in an email to Quartz. “The expanding outbreak in Europe in the last week made us feel we should take responsibility and set the good example as coronavirologists to not further spread the virus ourselves.”

Good idea - they will have a vaccine soon enough but until then, limit its spread.

Up and at 'em - long day

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Having dinner so late meant that I did not fall asleep until around midnight.

Out for coffee and some errands - library, post office, etc... Working at home today and waiting for something to be delivered to Harbor Freight - pick it up when they call me.

Of course - mental health

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If it were not for their double standards, they would have no standards at all - from Legal Insurrection:

Yale Psychiatrist Who Has Repeatedly Called Trump Mentally Unfit Refuses to Diagnose Biden
Yale psychiatrist Bandy Lee has repeatedly called Trump mentally unfit for office, despite the fact that she has never even met him. This has been widely condemned as an ethical violation of her profession.

As concerns grow about Joe Biden’s mental health, Lee is now refusing to apply the same standard to the former Vice President

A bit more:

Nancy LeTourneau writes at the Washington Monthly:

Brandy X. Lee, one of the mental health professionals who has been very vocal about Trump’s unfitness for office, explained why a declination to diagnose Biden is in keeping with professional standards.

I do not diagnose without examination and do not speak about public figures in general, unless there is evidence of such profound danger to public health and well-being because of serious signs of mental instability in a public servant, that it would be a public disservice not to share the knowledge and training that I have. Biden has not risen to this threshold…

Physician heal thyself. Her bias is showing loud and clear - disturbing in a profession that is supposed to be unbiased regarding someone's behaviour.

Is this just my imagination or

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Do these two technologies look a lot alike?  First, a selfie camera from a new division of Ricoh:

Actually looks kinda cool - if it has decent image specs and is for sale for less than $150, I might seriously consider getting one. And then, there is this technology from a few years ago:

Now if one of THOSE were for sale for under $150, I would certainly go ahead and get one.

Some documents were unsealed prior to sentencing - from the New York Times:

Weinstein Appealed to Bezos and Bloomberg for Help, Documents Show
In the days following news reports about how he used his power to sexually assault women, Harvey Weinstein made a desperate plea for help in emails to two dozen influential people, including the billionaires Michael Bloomberg and Jeff Bezos.

That detail was revealed on Monday in a trove of previously sealed court documents that offered a look into the days and weeks that followed the Hollywood mogul’s downfall.

Mr. Weinstein and his public relations team scrambled to craft a response to the allegations in October 2017. He promised to enter into a counseling program for sex addicts, and he did. “Allow me to resurrect myself with a second chance,” he wrote in one email.

A month later, in a scathing letter, his brother, Bob Weinstein, called Mr. Weinstein a sexual predator and an abusive person who belonged in “hell.”

And this little tid-bit:

In one email, Mr. Weinstein suggested that the actress Jennifer Aniston — who he believed had complained about him — should be killed.

Nice guy.  not. But, a classical example of what passes for our cultural elite these days - a sad state...

Messing up my dinner time

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I am usually fine with Daylight Savings - no problem resetting my circadian rhythms but... it sure messes up my dinner schedule. I like to eat around 5PM - was working and thinking that a bite to eat would be in order. Check the time and 6:15PM. Eat too late and I'll have problems getting to sleep so not good. Just takes a day or two to reset but it always catches me unawares a couple of times.

People are talking about keeping DST as a permanent thing - why not just use the standard time zone and everyone get up an hour earlier? How hard would that be?

And back home finally - IKEA

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Got an email that my bed frame was in so went to pick it up - 160 mile round trip but left fairly early so slipstreamed through the rush hours. The branch I went to is South of Seattle and the traffic can be epic so avoiding it is well worth the time and planning.

Taking a quick break to surf, grab a bite to eat, check email and then assembly. The fun never stops...

Running some errands and working at home. Brought down the music computer so getting that updated and ready to use. Been missing not having a keyboard to play...

More spew later - nothing on the internets as yet for today.

Home, bed.

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Another full day tomorrow so early bedtime. I love everyone on the board but some people just like to talk. And talk. And talk. And...

And off to the meeting

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Full board meeting so it will last for a while 😐 - run a few errands first...

COVID-19 to the north of us

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Had a cluster of fatalities to the south of us and now we have the first one to the north. From Canada's Global News:

COVID-19: B.C. announces Canada’s first coronavirus death
British Columbia has announced the first COVID-19-related death in the country, along with five new cases of the virus.

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry said the man is one of two people at a North Vancouver care home who was diagnosed with the virus last week.

Henry said the patient, a man in his 80s with underlying health conditions, passed away Sunday night.

What we are watching for is this progression: case, case, case, cluster, cluster because after that comes
the Ka-Boom. We do not want the Ka-Boom.

A tweet from ABC News:

Astounding. I love the one comment that says: "Translation, Trump is sending my broke state money."

A wonderful lazy day

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Unloading the van and working around the house. Turned into a glorious day - sunny and reasonably warm.

Breaking for a large meal - meeting tonight so early dinner/late lunch (Linner?)

Attempt #1 ?  From CNN:

Harvey Weinstein injured in Rikers Island jail, his publicist says
Convicted rapist Harvey Weinstein fell sometime Sunday morning while at Rikers Island jail, his spokesperson Juda Englemayer told CNN.

Englemayer said Weinstein was dizzy before he fell.

"Harvey says his head throbs all the time and thinks he has a concussion. He has not been officially diagnosed," Englemayer said.

Arkancide anyone? He knows too much.

No word as to what store but I love it

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I would so shop here if this place was in my area:

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Spot on...

Fauxcahontis - from a year ago

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About a year ago, Elizabeth Warren's "fake" native heritage came to the forefront of the public discourse when it was revealed that DNA testing showed her to be less than 1/1024th native.

From The Washington Post, February 5th, 2019:

Elizabeth Warren apologizes for calling herself Native American
Sen. Elizabeth Warren said Tuesday that she was sorry that she identified herself as a Native American for almost two decades, reflecting her ongoing struggle to quiet a controversy that continues to haunt her as she prepares to formally announce a presidential bid.

Her comments more fully explain the regret she expressed last week to the chief of the Cherokee Nation, the first time she’s said she was sorry for claiming American Indian heritage.

She did it to get preferential treatment in school. What prompted me to post this is the following image - her registration card for the State Bar of Texas:

20200309-warren.jpgThe entry in the lower-left corner is telling. Once a liar, always a liar. Her as President? I do not think so.

And, please tell me what is that crap about: "identified herself as a Native American for almost two decades"
Almost Two Decades? Seriously? 2019 minus 1986 equals 33 in my world. That is more than three decades, not almost two.

You know, the van that will unpack itself and store everything where it needs to go.

Sigh...

To work

No trip to the farm today

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Not heading North - brought down a lot of stuff and want to process it today. Also making good headway on the garage so continuing to work on that.

Done with morning routine, time for coffee, post office, library and back home to work - turning into a nice sunny day...

Believing in Santa

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Heh:

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From Kim DuToit - a daily read.

Whoops - earthquake in CA

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5.9 Mag offshore but the epicenter was only a touch under a mile deep (2.2km)
USGS website for the event is here: M 5.9 - 86km W of Petrolia, CA

From the Los Angeles Times:

Magnitude 5.9 quake strikes off the coast of Northern California
A magnitude 5.9 earthquake was reported Sunday evening at 7:59 p.m. Pacific time 60 miles from Fortuna, Calif., according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

The earthquake occurred 62 miles from Eureka, 65 miles from Myrtletown, 68 miles from Arcata and 70 miles from McKinleyville.

In the last 10 days, there have been no earthquakes of magnitude 3.0 or greater centered nearby.

Last paragraph? Just saying that this one is unique and not tied to prior activity. 5.9 would cause some significant building damage if on dry land and only 2.2km deep.

Tired but feeling good. Got the van packed to the rafters - unpack tomorrow morning and then head up again.

The arts group I am involved with hosts a major Studio Tour on the Mother's Day weekend and our board is seriously considering cancelling it because of COVID-19 - meeting tomorrow evening to talk about it.

Pulling some clothing out of the van and do some laundry...

On the road

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Did a bit of house cleaning after coffee - doing a dump run so might as well load the van up to the gills.

Back much later this evening. No posting until then.

Now this is very nice - Gibson Guitars

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From their foundation: Gibson Foundation:

Gibson wants to connect with Musicians who lost their Guitar in the recent Tennessee Tornado
Nashville is stepping-up for those who need support in the wake of the recent severe storms and Gibson will be a part of that support in many ways.  One way that Gibson will provide immediate help is to give a guitar to any musician who had their guitar damaged or destroyed by the recent Tennessee tornado.  If you or someone you know lost their guitar in the recent storm, let them know about the Gibson Gives Guitar Recovery Plan (Gibson’s Foundation) and check out our GibsonGives.org site for more information.  

“Our goal is to get a guitar back into the hands of anyone who has had their guitar damaged or destroyed in the recent Tennessee storm,” says Dendy Jarrett, Executive Director of Gibson Gives.  “As a Nashville, Tennessee-based company, we are also engaging with our artists and other partners to provide support across many areas.”

A nice gesture from a very good company. They did not have to do this and also, they could be milking this for a lot of publicity. Instead, they are doing a very quiet reaching out and helping Nashville artists. Well done Gibson.

The latest epidemic

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Older Japanese vehicles:

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A change in plans - farm

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I have a lot to bring down here so planning on making two trips - one today and one tomorrow. Dump run first - it opens at 9:30 so heading up after then.

Cloudy now but supposed to be sunny later and tomorrow so perfect day for moving. Heading out for coffee first - got to have caffine before I can function.

Nothing happening on the internets - no posting today to speak of...

And back home again

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Fun time - ran into a couple of people I knew so caught up on things.

Surf for a bit, YouTube with a pot of tea and then to sleep. Farm tomorrow and Monday.

Daylight Savings tomorrow - oh joy...

Done for the day

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Last night's beer was a good one - going out for another one tonight.

No attraction to the alcohol, looking for the socialization. Was working at home with only minimal interaction during coffee and library runs. Back soon - early morning tomorrow, heading to the farm for two days.

Shareef don't like it

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Interesting happenings with the price of oil now that the United States is a net exporter - from Zero Hedge:

Saudi Arabia Starts All-Out Oil War: MbS Destroys OPEC By Flooding Market, Slashing Oil Prices
With the commodity world still smarting from the Nov 2014 Saudi decision to (temporarily) break apart OPEC, and flood the market with oil in (failed) hopes of crushing US shale producers (who survived thanks to generous banks extending loan terms and even more generous buyers of junk bonds), which nonetheless resulted in a painful manufacturing recession as the price of Brent cratered as low as the mid-$20's in late 2015/early 2016, on Saturday, Saudi Arabia launched its second scorched earth, or rather scorched oil campaign in 6 years. And this time there will be blood.

Following Friday's shocking collapse of OPEC+, when Russia and Riyadh were unable to reach an agreement during the OPEC+ summit in Vienna which was seeking up to 1.5 million b/d in further oil production cuts, on Saturday Saudi Arabia kick started what Bloomberg called an all-out oil war, slashing official pricing for its crude and making the deepest cuts in at least 20 years on its main grades, in an effort to push as many barrels into the market as possible.

In the first major marketing decision since the meeting, the Saudi state producer Aramco, which successfully IPOed just before the price of oil cratered...

Without the oil revenues, the Arabs have nothing. Zip. Zero. Zilch. All of their glamorous cities and apparent wealth is a crude maquette propped up by the continuous influx of hard currency from oil exports. Lose that and they lose their world status. I do not doubt that they have forseen this day and have solid investments to carry them forward but still, sucks to be them right now. Some serious belt tightening is in order.

Title of the post? One of my favorite Clash songs:

A couple of errands and some dinner

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Need to get some more propane for the shop heater - downright chilly. Had a bit of hail move through an hour ago.

Expecting some things in the mail so checking there, getting some groceries and having some of yesterday's beef stew for dinner. Staying home tonight and working upstairs doing some electrical work. 

Such a bundle of joy - COVID-19

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The gift that keeps on giving. From the Chinese government's "official" news outlet (ie: the communist party house organ): Global Times

Autopsies offer key clues for early stage COVID-19 patients
Autopsies show severe damage to COVID-19 patients' lungs and immune system, according to a doctor in Wuhan reached by the Global Times, who called for measures to prevent fibrosis of the lungs at an early stage of the disease.

"The influence of COVID-19 on the human body is like a combination of SARS and AIDS as it damages both the lungs and immune systems," Peng Zhiyong, director of the intensive care unit of the Zhongnan Hospital of Wuhan University in Wuhan, told the Global Times on Friday.

Peng said he had just talked to Liu Liang, a forensic specialist from the Tongji Medical College at Huazhong University of Science and Technology. Liu's team has reportedly conducted nine autopsies on deceased COVID-19 patients as of February 24.

"The autopsy results Liu shared inspired me a lot. Based on the results, I think the most important thing now is to take measures at an early stage of the disease to protect patients' lungs from irreversible fibrosis," Peng noted.

If irreversible damage is done, other measures, like those to prevent patients from oxygen deficit, will not be of much use, he said.

Liu's team published a paper on an autopsy they conducted in the Journal of Forensic Medicine on Tuesday.

Such happy news. The Chinese government outdid themselves when developing this. It will be interesting to see what reperations they will be made to pay - this is going to cripple their plans for expansion which is a very good thing.

Of course, no link to the paper referenced and no word on US or Italian autopsies so this is only hearsay for now.

Time to get back to work - me

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Lunch break is over - time to get my butt in gear and get back to the garage.

I am tired of hearing his name in the news - wasn't fame supposed to be only fifteen minutes in duration?
A two-fer - first, from FOX News:

Jussie Smollett's bid to get charges thrown out rejected by Illinois Supreme Court
The Illinois Supreme Court rejected former "Empire" star Jussie Smollett's request to throw out charges that accuse him of staging a racist, homophobic attack in Chicago.

The ruling came Friday, along with the court's decision rejecting the actor's effort to remove the special prosecutor in the case.

If I was his lawyer, I would require payment up front and in cash. The evidence is blindingly obvious.

Second - some dank deep-state money is riding behind him. From 90 Miles:

George Soros-Backed Group Gave Huge Donation to County Prosecutor Who Dropped Jussie Smollett Charges
Anti-American billionaire George Soros reportedly gave seven-figure campaign donations to re-elect Kim Foxx, the Chicago prosecutor who decided to drop all charges against accused hate hoaxer Jussie Smollett.

Foxx is running to return to her office as state’s attorney for Cook County, and it’s reported that she benefited from a political pac named the Illinois Justice & Public Safety PAC which helped her run a six-figure ad campaign. It turns out that the pac’s entire $2 million budget came from one of the many activist groups stealthily funded by Soros, according to the Washington Free Beacon.

The guy is scum - he makes his money by destabilizing governments and quietly betting against their success. For one large example, see here, here and here. Soros is a Hungarian Jew and during WWII, as a teenager, he turned his family friends over to the Nazi's. He was masquerading as a Christian.

Time to get back to work - FBI

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Looks like they were sleeping during the previous administration - lost their mojo. Being involved with the deep state will do that to you. From Jim Hoft at Gateway Pundit writes about a new study from the DOJ Inspector General:

New Study Finds FBI Dropped Investigations on Terrorists Behind: Ft. Hood, Pulse Nightclub, Garland and Boston Marathon Islamist Attacks
A new study released this week by the DOJ Inspector General found that the FBI dropped investigations on the Islamic terrorists behind several deadly terrorist attacks.

    • Ft. Hood – Nidal Hasan
    • Boston Marathon – Tamerlan Tsarnaev
    • Garland, TX – Elton Simpson
    • Orlando Pulse Nightclub – Omar Mateen
    • NY Attacks – Ahmad Rahami
    • Ft. Lauderdale Airport – Esteban Santiago

The FBI was looking at these individuals but dropped the investigations before these Islamists went on their deadly killing sprees.

This is really bad news for America’s premier law enforcement agency.

But the president is a muslim and we can not target muslims. That would be divisive and racist.

Working at home today. Picked up some molding samples the other day so finishing them - trying a couple different colors to blend in and/or contrast with the flooring and walls. Also working on the garage.

Hillary's plan

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She just needs to go away. It is not "her turn" and it never will be. That is not how it works. From Breitbart:

Hillary Clinton: Biden Building ‘Broad-Based Coalition’ – Sanders Not ‘Our Strongest Nominee’
During a portion of an interview with CNN’s Fareed Zakaria released on Friday, former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton reiterated her claim that 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) isn’t the strongest person to take on President Trump and stated that 2020 Democrat former Vice President Joe Biden is building “a broad-based coalition.”

Clinton said, “As I’ve said many times, I do not think he’s our strongest nominee against Donald Trump.”

She is building up Quid-pro Joe with the hopes of being his choice for Vice President. Two months after he is inaugurated, Hillary will work to have him disqualified for reasons of incompetency and she gets to be the Queen for Life.

She is a vile power-hungry martinet and need to go away for her many crimes. Spend the rest of her life in some Federal Penitentiary. To serve as an example for other swamp-creatures aspiring to positions in the deep state.

That post has 1,370+ comments - some good reading.

From National Review:

In the End, Warren Was Undone by Her Own Dishonesty
The unsurprising news that Senator Elizabeth Warren is dropping out of the 2020 presidential race invites a lot of questions. How did Warren, flush with cash from a wildly successful grassroots-fundraising operation and atop all the national polls in mid October, fail to translate that lead into actual votes? Why didn’t her string of successful debate performances make a difference? And most importantly, why is her very like-minded socialist colleague, Senator Bernie Sanders, still standing while she’s finished?

Unlike others who’ve failed in their bid for the nomination this cycle — Amy Klobuchar, Kamala Harris, Julián Castro, Cory Booker — Warren was not undone by a lack of funds, campaign infrastructure, social-media following, or work ethic. She had all of those things, plus a campaign team stocked with high-level talent from past Clinton and Obama campaigns, yet she lost anyway.

And in the end, she has no one to blame but herself.

And a few examples - there are many many more:

Warren fell apart not because of her agenda but because her utter dishonesty about her personal life eroded her credibility as policy wonk. Her decision to double-down when called on lying about her Native American ancestry, her debunked allegation that she’d been fired from a school job for being pregnant, and her false claims that her kids had never attended private schools all shattered her persona as a thought leader and ideologue. Her personal opportunism, as well, made it easier to argue that her platform was opportunistic. So when voters got to pick between Sanders’s socialism and Warren’s, the choice became very easy.

Pants on fire. She had nothing to offer. None of the Democratic candidates do. The party could have just sat out the 2020 cycle and groomed a solid classical liberal for 2024 but no, the whole clown-car rushed in.

Something interesting from Amazon

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Just found out that they have an Amazon Renewed division. They take returned, open box, pre-owned items; they refurbish them and sell them at a significant price reduction. I was looking for a rack mount server for a project but they also do the same thing for cameras, cooking, office products, phones, tools, etc...

Check it out: Amazon Renewed

Impossible to excerpt

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Just go and read the whole thing - it's short but it will make you go: "Hmmmmm..."

From BorepatchWhen culture collapses

Almost ready for dinner

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What is it about cooking onions and garlic that smells sooooo good. Whole house smells wonderful.

A good point - COVID-19

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Fake News gets handed some papers - from PJ Media:

Trump Campaign Files Multi-Million-Dollar Defamation Lawsuit Against CNN Over Russia Collusion Claims
On Friday, the Trump campaign filed a defamation lawsuit against CNN over false claims regarding collusion with Russia. The suit demands "compensatory damages in the millions of dollars," along with punitive damages. This is the third such lawsuit against major media outlets regarding allegedly "false and defamatory" articles about Russia collusion. The campaign sued The New York Times last month and The Washington Post earlier this week.

"Today the President's re-election campaign has filed suit against CNN for false statements, claiming that the campaign ‘assessed the potential risks and benefits of again seeking Russia's help in 2020 and has decided to leave that option on the table.’ The statements were and are 100 percent false and defamatory," Jenna Ellis, senior legal adviser to the Trump campaign, said in a statement. "The complaint alleges CNN was aware of the falsity at the time it published them, but did so for the intentional purpose of hurting the campaign, while misleading its own readers in the process."

Heh - CNN just had its ass handed to it by the Covington High School suit - no public details as they settled out of court but I do not think that Nick Sandman will be hurting for money for a long long time. He deserves every penny. The discovery process will be interesting to say the least.

Break from work

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Starting to fix dinner - I have been eating vegetarian for the last six months or so but that is not a "pure" diet. I still eat seafood and I was just missing charcuterie and salumi too much to give that up.

Making a beef stew for dinner tonight. Been craving animal protein for the last week or so - had some chicken with dinner a few nights ago and that felt really good. Do something a bit more substantial tonight. Got a fresh loaf of good multi-grain bread from the food coop this afternoon so have that with...

From Electroverse:

NORTHERN HEMISPHERE TOTAL SNOW MASS CURRENTLY RUNNING 300 GIGATONS ABOVE THE 1982-2012 AVERAGE

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Data from the Finnish Meteorological Institute (FMI) reveals that the Total Snow Mass for the Northern Hemisphere has been consistently above the 30 year average for the majority of the season, and is now actually increasing its rate of growth.

GREENLAND SMB SPIKING AGAIN
Furthermore, on the back of substantial SMB gains over the past few years, the Greenland ice sheet looks set to continue that trend in 2020.

Crucial to the survival of a glacier is its surface mass balance (SMB)–the difference between accumulation and ablation (sublimation and melting). Changes in mass balance control a glacier’s long-term behavior, and are its most sensitive climate indicators (wikipedia.org).

On March 02, 2020 the world’s largest island added a healthy 5 gigatons to its ice sheet. According to climate alarmists, this simply shouldn’t be happening in a linearly warming world… but developments like this NEVER receive MSM attention, meaning alarmists are NEVER privy to the full and unalarming picture:

Much more at the site with links and citations. It looks like we are in for an extended period of cooler than normal weather. Prepare for it. Anyone who continues to promote the global warming scam is pushing a political agenda and not a scientific observation. It just ain't happening.

From the Washington Examiner:

Economy defied early coronavirus fears in February with 273,000 new jobs, unemployment ticked down to 3.5%
Employment growth in February beat expectations, as 273,000 workers were added to payrolls, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Friday. The unemployment rate was 3.5%, versus 3.6% in January.

Forecasters had expected about 175,000 jobs.

The job growth numbers for December and January were also revised up, by a combined 85,000.

Under the previous administration, unemployment numbers peaked at 10%. Yes, he inherited the housing bubble but still, President Trump's turn-around could have been accomplished ten years ago just as easily. All it took was the ability to see outside the Washington D.C. bubble and to have some business experience.

An interesting point of view - COVID-19 might be key in putting a dead-stop halt to the advancement of globalism. This is a very good thing. From William Lind writing at traditionalRIGHT:

The View From Olympus: A Chink in Our Armor
I have warned for decades that the future weapon of mass destruction is not the nuclear weapon but the genetically engineered plague. The world now stands on the brink of its first experience with that new weapon.

Whether the coronavirus now racing from China across the globe was created by intention or accident is not yet known. The Chinese government claims the latter, but that government is well known for concealing facts it finds inconvenient. My information, which may not be accurate, is that it escaped from a Chinese biowarfare lab in Wuhan that was attempting to cross it with HIV to create an AIDS that would spread like the flu. We now know how to treat AIDs, but the drugs are very expensive. If the objective were to inflict an economic catastrophe on another country, such a bioweapon would do the trick. So far, it does not appear that the version that got out–its escape would be typical Chinese sloppiness–has the cross; only the carrier escaped the lab. If that proves true, we can all be thankful.

And William's thesis:

We would do so well to remember that the Medieval world, which, contrary to what kids are taught in school, was highly successful, was brought down by the plague, the Black Death. When you lose a third, half, or even two-thirds of your population in six weeks, everything falls apart.

So what do we do about it? We have to face the fact that in the face of new plagues, Globalism is suicide. The only thing that works is quarantine. In the Middle Ages, some Italian towns saved themselves from the plague by a policy of immurement: any house where plague appeared was bricked up, with the people inside.

The equivalent for us now is to shut down all international travel. No one may enter the United States without going through a period of quarantine. The current wisdom is that a two-week quarantine is sufficient. That may change. With future genetically engineered plagues, the quarantine may have to be longer. In Thomas Hobbes’ novel Victoria, entry into Europe requires a three-month quarantine on Heligoland Island. Of course, anyone illegally attempting to enter the country and thereby avoiding quarantine must be shot dead.

He concludes with this thought:

This is the future, folks; not “one world”, but many moats and drawbridges.  Globalism is the chink in our armor, or perhaps going into a tournament without hauberk or cuirass.  We will either armor up or listen to the cry in our streets, “Bring out your dead.”

Agree 100% - globalism has helped make some early adopters very rich but the overall benefit for general society has been minimal at best and with the criminals coming across our border, downright bad. We tried it and found it wanting - good riddance to an idea that sounded good but did not DO good. Typical progressive twaddle.

Slept in this morning - the rain does that to me.

Heading out for the usual and then working on the garage as well as building a keyboard tray for my media computer. Couple other fun projects in the pipeline too.

And that is it tonight

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Long day with a lot of driving. Long day tomorrow too.

YouTube for a bit and then sleep.

Did some work at home, brought some more stuff to the new storage unit and then decided to head to Bellingham to check the wood stores there for molding for the new rooms. Everett was a bust in that department.

Turns out that Windsor Plywood had exactly what I was looking for so picked up 30 feet to try different finishes and configurations. See if I like it before I get a couple hundred bucks worth... Visited Hardware Sales as well. Dinner on the road and home again.

My CERT meeting tonight was canceled by the county - they are in a State of Declared Emergency so meetings with more than 10 people are seriously frowned upon.

At home. It is raining and cold - good night to be hunkered down, safe and warm...

Stopped at a local Safeway for a sandwich to eat while I waited for my car. They asked what I wanted, I told them and expressly said that I wanted it sliced straight across. They started to slice it diagonally. They cut through the top slice and offered to remake it but I did not want to simply waste the food so told them it was OK, just to re-cut it straight across. They proceeded to slice it lengthwise. In my book, if you are cutting a rectangular shape, straight across is across the minima and lengthwise is across the maxima. Doesn't everyone know this?

Brought the car into the dealership 20 minutes before my scheduled appointment. I was told that it would be 60-90 minutes and that since I was a bit pressed for time, if they could skip the complimentary car wash. After about 90 minutes, I noticed a car a lot like mine sitting in the "out" line in their waiting area. I went back to reading my book and then 20 minutes later, that car was still there. I talked to a service agent and yes, it was mine and they were very sorry, very sorry, very sorry but... To top it off, they had washed it. I could have been getting on with my day 45-60 minutes earlier.

Working in the garage this afternoon getting things to move to the storage unit and then a CERT training session tonight. Getting ready to do the molding and trim around the new flooring.

Quick surf and nothing

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The usual stuff but nothing catches my eye. Time to get on with my day.

And top of the morning - busy day

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I am busier now than when I ever was working full-time... Car to dealership for periodic maintenence, working in the garage today - moving some major pieces around to rearrange the space. My local CERT group is doing pandemic training at tonight's meeting so planning to attend. Handy thing to have especially these days.

Done with the meeting

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Productive and quick. I love meetings that last less than one hour. Next month will run long as we are discussing a sticky issue but we brought it up tonight as a bit of a teaser so people will have the time to form a solid opinion and next month's discussion will be a bit more ordered and thought out. That is the plan at least.

Went out with a couple members after and had a pint of Ranier (like making love in a canoe*) but am feeling it. Curious how much I can feel the effects of a tiny amount of alcohol now that I am not drinking it on a regular basis.

Surf for a bit and then to sleep.

* making love in a canoe? - this is the same thing as "f**king close to water" - about 3.5% ABV

Schumer has a long history of saying actionable things in front of a camera and then walking them back. I really hope that he does not get away with it this time. From our President's twitter account:

The best description for Schumer that I have heard is that he is an odious little man.

A wonderful word "odious" - captures the sentiment perfectly.

That did not take long

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From FOX News:

Chief Justice Roberts issues rare rebuke to Schumer's 'dangerous' and 'irresponsible' comments; Schumer fires back
Chief Justice of the United States John Roberts on Wednesday issued a highly unusual and forceful rebuke to Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., calling his seemingly threatening remarks directed at Associate Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh "irresponsible" and "dangerous" -- prompting Schumer's office to slam Roberts and accuse him of bias.

The extraordinary back-and-forth began hours earlier at a pro-choice rally hosted by the Center for Reproductive Rights, when Schumer ominously singled out President Trump's two Supreme Court picks: "I want to tell you, Gorsuch. I want to tell you, Kavanaugh. You have released the whirlwind and you will pay the price!" Schumer warned. "You won’t know what hit you if you go forward with these awful decisions."

Roberts replied in his remarkable written statement, obtained by Fox News: "This morning, Senator Schumer spoke at a rally in front of the Supreme Court while a case was being argued inside. Senator Schumer referred to two Members of the Court by name and said he wanted to tell them that 'You have released the whirlwind, and you will pay the price. You will not know what hit you if you go forward with these awful decisions.'"

Roberts continued: "Justices know that criticism comes with the territory, but threatening statements of this sort from the highest levels of government are not only inappropriate, they are dangerous. All Members of the Court will continue to do their job, without fear or favor, from whatever quarter."

Schumer spokesman Justin Goodman quickly responded by accusing Roberts of bias, further escalating the confrontation. Goodman insisted that Schumer was addressing Republican lawmakers when he said a "price" would be paid -- even though Schumer had explicitly named Kavanaugh and Gorsuch.

Schumer's people can backpedal all they want. Schumer went grossly over the line and Justice Roberts is letting him know that. Time for fossils like Schumer and Pelosi to ride off into the sunset. They are not working for their constituents and they do not have America's best interests at heart.

A question - Senator Schumer

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Sure sounds like he issued a threat against two standing Supreme Court Justices. From PJ Media:

Did Chuck Schumer Just Threaten Gorsuch and Kavanaugh? Sure Looks That Way
Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer appeared to threaten Trump-appointed Supreme Court Justices Brett Kavanaugh and Neil Gorsuch over their potential votes in the first abortion case before the Supreme Court with the new conservative majority, during a #MyRightMyDecision rally outside the Supreme Court on Wednesday.

“I want to tell you, Gorsuch, I want to tell you, Kavanaugh: You have released the whirlwind, and you will pay the price," Schumer said to a chorus of cheers. "You won't know what hit you if you go forward with these awful decisions."

Much more at the site.

I am sure that someone from his office has walked back his statement saying that it was rhetorical but still, this was a call to direct action and not just a verbal criticism. Why are the left such haters? They are fruit-loops crazy.

Of course, he will slide although he certainly seems to be in violation of this: 18 U.S. Code § 115.Influencing, impeding, or retaliating against a Federal official by threatening or injuring a family member

Ten years in the slammer Chuck... You ready?

Got a bunch of emails regarding my tiny county and the fact that they just declared State of Emergency over COVID-19.

No deployment notices as yet but keeping my phone and a radio (or two) with me. Good thing that all the ham radio operators drill for stuff like this. Feel a lot more secure knowing that communications will not be broken.

Here's how to do it - hand washing

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Not just for coronavirus - this should be the routine for any regular hand washing:

20200304-corona-texas.jpg

Back home - a good trip

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Glad that I made the trip. Found a fantastic lumber yard: Martin Lumber & Hardware. The hardware stores and other lumber yards were 110% meh... Located the Graingers store - there used to be one in Bellingham but that closed a few years ago. Great plumbing outlet: Ferguson Plumbing and yes, they do sell to the general public. Some stores like this are wholesale only - have to be licensed before they will sell to you. Looks like I will still be making regular trips to Hardware Sales for the foreseeable future.

Bite to eat, work on the garage for a few hours and then a meeting of the arts group. L has a class later today. Turned into a gorgeous day - lots of sunshine and warm. Have the doors and windows open.

Rated M for MAGA

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Fun little video - lots of stuff happening in the background so watch carefully - the thing is full of Easter Eggs:

Uplifting - Sunday Service

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Yesterday, I wrote about some tranny who got their whatever out of joint because the theater in Paris where xe was supposed to be performing cancelled their show in favor of bringing in Kanye West for one of his Sunday Services. Oh yeah, there were only 98 seats sold for the tranny's performance.

Here is a video of one of the hymns - crank the sound up, it is joyous and wonderful:

Looks like a pretty full house too - a lot more than 98 seats filled. Nice to see people coming around to conservative values.

Got nothing this morning - fun day

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Heading South to check out hardware stores and lumber yards. There are ones I go to in Bellingham (Hardware Sales & Builders Alliance, Bellingham Millwork and Windsor Plywood) but Everett is only 40 miles away and Bellingham is closer to 60. Makes a difference considering the round trip and the traffic.

Besides, checking out hardware stores on a nice day - talk about a fun outing...

Nothing on the internet so getting ready for the day - L is coming down with me so that should be fun.

The wind is picking up

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Getting quite gusty out there. Electricity is fine here in the USA but British Columbia have a couple thousand people without service.

Checking YouTube and then to bed.

And back

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Chinese food for dinner, picked up some things at Costco and other places.

Feeling downright sleepy - quick surf first...

Out for an hour or three

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Mailbox, grocery shopping and a bite to eat. Heading down to Everett tomorrow to explore the city.

#3) - you are WHERE???  From Zero Hedge:

Silver Linings Playbook: 119 People Quarantined In A Brothel In Spain
Of all the places to be quarantined, a brothel in Valencia, Spain, might not be the worst. You've got booze, you've likely got a small buffet of fried foods and you've got entertainment.

But in all seriousness, that was exactly the case a day ago when authorities found that a woman working at the "La Selva Negra" brothel had tested positive for coronavirus. The findings forced authorities to quarantine the premises and the 86 customers that were inside.

The employee, who is now in the hospital, had "slept with several clients that same night," according to a translated blog post on the story. 

In addition to the customers, the club's owners, waitresses, security and cleaning crew were also quarantined. When added to the total of 86 customers, it makes 119 people under quarantine. They have been asked to "keep calm" and to just "live a normal life" inside the premises.

Sometimes, life can just suck... Or not...

Looks like even more of Barry's "legacy" gets put into the dustbin of history. From Yahoo News:

The Supreme Court will consider Obamacare's constitutionality — and the outcome could bring 'total chaos'
The Supreme Court has agreed to hear an appeal case on the Affordable Care Act (ACA), commonly known as Obamacare, that could potentially invalidate the entire law.

On Dec. 15, 2018, a Texas judge ruled that Obamacare’s individual mandate was unconstitutional. Judge Reed O’Connor agreed with the plaintiffs who argued that the lack of a penalty invalidated the “individual mandate” provision of the law, and if that part of the law was now invalid, then the whole law was.

Democratic states and the House of Representatives appealed the decision, and the case made it all the way up to the Supreme Court in a case titled California v. Texas. The court has not yet scheduled oral arguments, but a decision is expected close to the end of its 2021 term. If the conservative-majority justices find the individual mandate unconstitutional, that could mean all of the ACA is unconstitutional.

Stupid law when passed, best that it go away. Much better if we simply allowed the market to set prices. Let hospitals advertise for their services and publish price lists. Best way to bring the prices down.

Got the bedroom floor in this morning. Two photos:

20200303-bedroom-01.jpg

20200303-bedroom-02.jpg

The stuff on the chair is my UPS and router for internet. Fun how well my raincoat picks up the camera flash. Nice to be visible when outside in inclement weather.

Still have not figured out what to do with the closet yet - keep going around a couple of similar designs. Looking at sliding barn doors for the front, painting the existing paneling white and installing LED lighting.

Yes, that is the ocean outside the windows in the first photo. Love it here. Yes, I know about the Cascadia Subduction Zone but I also know that I am very well shielded by Whidbey and the other San Juan islands. FEMA has me at about a five foot gradual surge at the worst.

Nice to see the pendulum swinging back again - from Agence France-Presse:

Fury as Kanye West hymn service pushes out transgender show
US rapper Kanye West was at the centre of a storm Monday after a Paris show by an acclaimed transgender performer was cancelled at the last minute to make way for one of his religious services.

The mercurial singer took over the Bouffes du Nord theatre in the French capital for one of his famous "Sunday Service" gospel hymn sessions during Paris fashion week.

His wife Kim Kardashian turned up for the service in an almost sprayed-on latex brown suit, one of three figure-hugging Balmain looks she wore during the course of the day.

But French trans performer Phia Menard was furious that her "Maison Mere" ("Mother Ship") show was pulled at just one day's notice to make way for the golden couple of American pop culture, claiming the audience was told it was cancelled for "technical reasons".

Menard -- one of the discoveries of the Avignon festival in 2018 -- refused take the news lying down, with her and her fans lambasting the theatre and West as an "imposter" on social media.

Enjoy your tantrum little ex-man. The article goes on to give the real reason for the change:

"The 98 people who had bought tickets were contacted and most came to her show the night before while the rest were reimbursed," the theatre's management added.

Kanye is a bigger draw. Mx. Menard is a legend in its own mind. Not in anyone else's - with the exception of the 98 sycophants. Enjoy your fifteen minutes - the time is fleeting. Tip of the hat to Don Surber.

Another full day

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Putting down the flooring in the bedroom today - got everything prepped so should be pretty simple.

Now this will be fun - coronavirus

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The recent death of a man in a neighboring county has some implications - from the Everett Herald:

Mariner High School student’s father dies of coronavirus
The reality that novel coronavirus is frightening, deadly and lurking at the front door was evident Monday in the empty parking lots at Mariner and Henry M. Jackson high schools.

The campuses are 2¼ miles apart and home to nearly 4,600 students. Both were closed Monday.

At Jackson, a student was diagnosed with the virus Friday, leading district officials to close the school for a deep cleaning.

At Mariner, the father of a student became infected with the virus and died. The man in his 40s had been in critical condition Sunday at EvergreenHealth Medical Center in Kirkland. The Snohomish Health District confirmed his death Monday.

I shudder to think of all the students at the school bringing this home to their families, to their sports groups, churches, etc... The garden variety flu is much worse but this one does bear watching.

How's that thrill going up your leg now? From NBC News:

Chris Matthews announces retirement, mutually parts ways with MSNBC
Chris Matthews, one of the longest-tenured voices at MSNBC, announced his retirement during Monday’s night’s airing of his talk show, “Hardball.”

Matthews, 74, said he and MSNBC had mutually agreed to part ways. The decision followed a series of events that resulted in criticism of the host’s statements about Bernie Sanders,   African-American lawmakers,   and comments he had made to female journalists and coworkers.

“I’m retiring,” Matthews said. “This is the last ‘Hardball’ on MSNBC.”

He criticized the magic communist - he dissed Breadline Bernie; the giver of free government cheese. Of course he has to go to the re-education camp if not simply taken out and shot. He showed signs of independent thought. He was in danger of running away from the Democrat Plantation (? - here, here, here and a video - this scheme has been in play since the 1960's). Of course they are going to throw him under the bus.

And back out again

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I feel reborn. Thank God for Tyvek bunny suits. Still need a long hot shower though. The space is only about two feet tall so I have to do hands and knees to get from one spot to another. The house at my old farm has almost five feet - huge difference. A little bit more carpentry and then dinner.

Need to spend some quality time in the crawlspace planning the hatch. The fun never stops...

Our friends in China

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Do we really need to do business with them? From Reuters:

Exclusive: Newly obtained documents show Huawei role in shipping prohibited U.S. gear to Iran
China’s Huawei Technologies, which for years has denied violating American trade sanctions on Iran, produced internal company records in 2010 that show it was directly involved in sending prohibited U.S. computer equipment to Iran’s largest mobile-phone operator.

Two Huawei packing lists, dated December 2010, included computer equipment made by Hewlett-Packard Co and destined for the Iranian carrier, internal Huawei documents reviewed by Reuters show.

Another Huawei document, dated two months later, stated: “Currently the equipment is delivered to Tehran, and waiting for the custom clearance.”

The packing lists and other internal documents, reported here for the first time, provide the strongest documentary evidence to date of Huawei’s involvement in alleged trade sanctions violations. They could bolster Washington’s multifaceted campaign to check the power of Huawei, the world’s leading telecommunications-equipment maker.

It is bad enough that they steal our technology - they sell it to nations who are not friendly to us? Unconscionable. Time to find other nations to manufacture our toys and tethers. Or just do it ourselves - what a concept...

This is strange if true and stunning if probable. From Israel National News:

Will Sen. Chris Murphy infect the entire US Senate with COVID-19?
This year’s Munich Security Conference may go down in history as the COVID-19 viral super-spreader “event of the century," if not in all of recorded history. That’s because the Munich 2020 event took place from February Friday 14-Sunday 16, and Iran’s Foreign Minister Javad Zarif attended.

Unknown to apparently all the high security-minded attendees, FM Zarif was likely carrying much more than the dark secret that the COVID-19 virus had already begun rampaging through the highest echelons of the Iranian government and society. FM Zarif , or one of his minions, was likely carrying the actual COVID-19, and infected who knows how many of the world’s highest and most influential politicians at the Munich event.

In fact, US Senator Chris Murphy, Democrat from Connecticut, not only met FM Zarif, but met him in Zarif’s hotel suite where there was likely a rat’s nest of COVID-19. Unless drastic steps are taken, Sen. Murphy may become the Typhoid Mary of COVID-19, and infect the entire US Senate and House of Representatives.

Much more at the site - Murphy sat with Foreign Minister Zarif in his hotel room for many hours with aides going in and out. Lots of people in a small space. The next week or two will be interesting to follow...

As it starts - Biden

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The run-up to this election is going to be pure theater - from The Daily Caller:

Senate Panel Plans To Issue First Subpoena In Burisma-Biden Probe
Sen. Ron Johnson, the chairman of the Senate Homeland Security Committee, is preparing to issue the panel’s first subpoena as part of an investigation into Burisma Holdings, the Ukrainian energy company linked to Hunter Biden, he said in a letter on Sunday.

The next eight months are going to be a lot of fun. I can only imagine the list of actions queued up for between now and then.

We are now at six dead and 12 new infections. From Seattle station KOMO:

Coronavirus in Washington state: 6 dead, 12 others infected
Six people have now died from the coronavirus in the Puget Sound area and at least 12 others have been infected, health officials said Monday, as King County's top executive issued an emergency declaration in response to the outbreak.

On death was someone from Snohomish County - right next door.

Practicing basic prophylaxis - stay away from crowds and observe good hygiene.

Done for the day - plan B

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We did not feel like doing the flooring so we rented the storage unit and moved a lot of useless crap precious belongings over there. Gives a lot more room to organize. The garage was especially bad - I was having to move five things to be able to work on one. The unit is only two miles away so I can run out and get something if I need it.

Surf for a bit and then prep for flooring tomorrow. Wednesday, we are heading down to Everett to check out hardware stores down there. I have some favorite places in Bellingham but Everett has very industrial roots and is a larger city - they should have some awesome places and they are 30 miles closer (round trip). Expand my horizons...

Woo Hoo - a weather update

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Checked the forecast and we went from 90% chance of precip today to (drumroll) 100% chance.

FML... At least we are working inside and got the fire going so it is nice and warm.

Something to remember - Coronavirus

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It may be something to be concerned about but the plain old flu is also out there and it is a lot more widespread and deadly. From the US Centers for Disease Control:

Weekly U.S. Influenza Surveillance Report
Key Updates for Week 8, ending February 22, 2020
Key indicators that track flu activity remain high but decreased for the second week in a row. Severity indicators (hospitalizations and deaths) remain moderate to low overall, but hospitalization rates differ by age group, with high rates among children and young adults.

Much more at the site including this world-wide bit of data:

CDC estimates that so far this season there have been at least 32 million flu illnesses, 310,000 hospitalizations and 18,000 deaths from flu.

Yes, the Coronavirus is bad but the flu is much worse. People are hyping this for their own purposes and not in the interest of public health. In general, do not panic, avoid crowds, wash your hands a lot, do not touch your face. The usual...

Rain rain go away

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Solid rain showers this morning - bleagh... L will be over in a couple of hours for breakfast and then to put down flooring in the bedroom. We are renting another storage unit later today - I had my things put away in closets and on shelves but these are now emptied out for the remodel. Need to stash stuff until these spaces are available again.

The joys of remodeling - the place will be gorgeous when done but it is chaos now.

And that is it for me for tonight

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Heading to bed - if we had been at the event, it would be winding down just now. Glad we punked out.

The second death in the United States today - from Seattle station KOMO:

Second death from coronavirus marks 13 positive cases in Washington
A second man has died from coronavirus in King County, bringing the total to 13 confirmed cases in Washington state.

A man in his 70s is the second person to die at EvergreenHealth. He's among the five new cases of COVID-19 that were confirmed Sunday evening. Two women, who are in their 80s and 90s, remain in critical condition at the Kirkland hospital.

The usual precautions apply - stay away from crowds, don't touch your face, wash your hands obsessively.

O'Keefe has another bunch of videos lined up. Here he is at CPAC talking about it:

Drove up to the event, started to park and we both said that we didn't want to attend. Wonderful people but we would not be getting out of there until 9PM and it is a long drive back to the island. We are snug in our respective homes now. Raining outside - cold and nasty. Meeting up tomorrow to work on the floor.

Surf for a bit and then an early bedtime.

An event with L - meeting up in a few minutes as I need to get some more plywood for the floor first.

A busy day today

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Forgot a few items on my trip to Mt. Vernon yesterday but I was able to get them (for a much higher price) at the local hardware store so I am good to go this afternoon.

Finishing off a late lunch and back to work. Getting ready to floor the bedroom tomorrow. The fun never stops.

Got an event tonight that L and I are attending so finishing off early - couple more hours of work and that will be it.

A quiet day - eight years ago

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Seems much longer. Eight years ago today, Andrew Breitbart passed away suddenly at the age of 43.

Here is what I posted March 1st, 2012:

No posting today
Busy day today. Woke up to hear that Andrew Breitbart died unexpectedly early this morning. He was 43 with a wife and four children -- he did have a history of heart problems but this is way to young to go. He is someone who spoke truth to power and did it brilliantly -- it is curious to hear the comments from the liberals. Shows them to be the amoral power-hungry a**holes that they are. Obits herehere and here.

He wrote these words and they ring as true today as they did then:

“Walk toward the fire. Don’t worry about what they call you. All those things are said against you because they want to stop you in your tracks. But if you keep going, you’re sending a message to people who are rooting for you, who are agreeing with you. The message is that they can do it, too.”
– Andrew Breitbart, 1969 – 2012

Heh

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From the web:

20200301-mixer.jpg

From the New York Post:

China officials knew of coronavirus in December, ordered cover-up, report says
Chinese scientists knew about the coronavirus and its deadly effects as early as December — but were ordered by government officials to suppress the evidence, according to a report.

In late December, several genomics companies tested samples from sick patients in Wuhan — the center of the coronavirus outbreak — and noticed alarming similarities between their illnesses and the 2002 SARS virus, the Sunday Times of London reported, citing Chinese business news site Caixin Global.

The researchers alerted Beijing of their findings — and on Jan. 3, received a gag order from China’s National Health Commission, with instructions to destroy the samples.

More at the site - the joys of living in a totalitarian regieme. Tell me again just how wonderful socialism or communism is Bernie supporters?

From The Washington Times:

Trump urges Bloomberg to stiff campaign consultants as spending tops $500 million
President Trump on Sunday urged Michael R. Bloomberg not to pay his campaign consultants, saying they “led you down a very dark and lonely path,” as the former New York City mayor’s campaign spending eclipsed $500 million.

Democratic spending on the 2020 presidential primary campaign topped $1 billion last week, with Mr. Bloomberg responsible for the lion’s share at more than $500 million, according to multiple media analyses.

“Mini Mike Bloomberg’s consultants and so-called ‘advisors’ (how did that advice work out? Don’t ask!), are on the ‘gravy train’ and all making a fortune for themselves pushing Mini hard, when they knew he never had what it takes,” tweeted Mr. Trump.

“Don’t pay them anymore Mike, they led you down a very dark and lonely path! Your reputation will never be the same!” he added.

President Trump has a really good point - if Mini-Mike is unable to choose competent consultants, how will he be able to choose advisors - Secretary of State, Judges, Cabinet Members, etc...

Epic troll from our President.

Working in the crawlspace - some drainage issues from all the rain a few weeks ago. Putting a permanent hatch into the space from the living area. There are access points - one outside and one in the garage - but they are a pain to crawl into. This way, I can just pop the hatch and step down into the space. Done. It will be in the hallway where I am putting in the new flooring so I will be able to make it pretty much invisible.

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