May 2020 Archives

Apple - falling - tree - etc...

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I think that they are going to find themselves way in over their heads. Will not be happening to a nicer bunch of people. From Law Enforcement Today:

Antifa warns: “F-the City. Tonight we move into the residential areas” before Twitter account shut down
Editor note: This is a rapidly developing story and we’ll be updating as the night goes on.  If you’re following us on Facebook, make sure to click “Following – See First” or you might miss the updates, as social media is censoring this story.
Hours after President Trump declared that he’ll be designating Antifa as a terror organization, they reportedly made the ultimate threat – we’re bringing the war to the suburbs.

Now authorities are on high alert.

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Screenshots of the above post have been circulating throughout law enforcement agencies tonight.

A bit more - this is Portland, OR of course:

The irony is, that all the violent aggressors in the videos shown don’t appear to be black.

In fact, the only people that came to help and render medical attention to the injured man were two black women.

It has gotten to the point where black demonstrators are having to document the likes of Antifa being the ones responsible for the destruction.

One woman starts recording two women who are spray painting the side of a Starbucks with “BLM,” and she calls them out on camera.

I think that once a couple of them come to grips with the fact that they are not going to be released with a $50 fine, that in fact, they are looking at up to five years in prison, they will turn and start singing and singing loudly. I think and hope that Antifa has overplayed their hand and that they as an organization will be rolled up and locked away.

The problem is that groups like this study their tactics and they are probably based around organizational cells and there is an air-gap between each cell. Sure, they may roll up the Portland chapter and even get a few higher-ups but the ringleaders will get away scott free. There is always a fertile pool of unrest and nihilism in the universities and they will be back recruiting for Antifa 2.0 (by another name) in two or three years. We need to remember this and get there ahead of them.

This story shows the content of their character - Austin, Texas - another cesspit:

Antifa burns homeless Marine’s mattress as he begs them to stop – “Please, I live here!”

The guy was a well-known combat vet with severe PTSD. Nice work Antifa.

A great eight minutes

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President Trump's words on the launch of SpaceX's rocket - he addresses the rioting.
Masterful speech - well worth your time to watch:

And dinnertime

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Not making the pasta tonight - don't feel like getting that involved. Heating up some more of the feijoada and rice - maybe do a salad.

In Seattle, the bridge to West Seattle was recently found to be in dire need of repair and is now closed to traffic. It normally carried 125,000 people per day so this is a major impact to residents. An Interesting article at The Seattle Times about a bunch of other bridges that might be worse off:

West Seattle Bridge is a surprise crisis, but plenty of other aging Seattle bridges are also vulnerable
In January, if West Seattle commuters caught in a bottleneck had gazed out the window at their high bridge and wondered about its safety, a look at federal bridge ratings may have calmed their nerves. The bridge was labeled sufficient. In a catchall rating out of 100, it had a respectable 69.

By the spring, the city had discovered that cracks in the bridge were accelerating, closed it with no definite reopening date and begun preparing emergency plans in the event — which the city says is unlikely — the bridge collapses.

The abrupt turnaround for the West Seattle Bridge, which carried 125,000 travelers a day, underscores how even structures deemed sufficient by federal authorities can face serious problems and create new transportation crises. And in Seattle, dozens of other bridges have lower overall ratings than the now-closed span, some with key vulnerabilities the West Seattle Bridge never had.

And just an idea of what they are facing:

Among the Seattle bridges with lower ratings than the West Seattle Bridge, six have a label never attached to that span: They are deemed structurally deficient or rated “poor,” meaning they need significant repair or replacement. Nine bridges have structures that are fracture critical, meaning they could fall if a certain major part is damaged, as happened in the 2013 Skagit River bridge collapse.

Let's see now - we can maintain our infrastructure or we can sponsor a summer music festival and hand out free shit to the homeless and this and that and everything else...

Point of fact - the Skagit River bridge was actually in good condition. Skagit County is good about maintenance. It was not up to current code though and the collapse happened when an oversize truck hit and fractured a primary support span. No fatalities.

Heh - cute

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Autocorrect is not your friend:

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Tip of the hat to Woodsterman

And back home - good day

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The dehumidifier was in fantastic shape, lightly used and works well. Normally selling for about $200+, I got this unit for $60. It was near the town of La Conner so spent 30 minutes having a nice drive through that area. La Conner is a run-down fishing town that has become gentrified over the last 30 years and is actually quite a lovely little tourist trap. They took pains to retain the character of the buildings and the waterfront and all the businesses there are all local - no McDonald's to be seen.

A bit concerned with my older dog Grace - she had been exhibiting aggressive behavior recently (here and here - she bit the bicyclist the last time) and is now very quiet and lethargic. She slept all this morning during the drive and is asleep now. Take her to the vet tomorrow.

Picked up some fresh spaghetti noodles so making pasta for dinner - using another can of the San Marzano tomatoes for the sauce. Yummy.

"Spontaneous" acts of protest

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Yeah right - from Law Enforcement Today:

Report: piles of bricks are being staged in cities around the country, indicating riots are planned
There is a lot of weird stuff going on with these “protests” turned riots in cities across the country.

There are many who were thinking that these riots have Antifa written all over them and that appears to be getting confirmed that these riots were planned, orchestrated events.

All that was needed was a spark, which was the unfortunate incident involving George Floyd in Minneapolis.

Breitbart is reporting that in Dallas, people who were in a position to observe the protests (riots) that took place in that city noted that there were multiple piles of bricks in areas of the city where there was no construction underway.

One of those areas was said to be near the Dallas County Courthouse.

Photos of bricks stacked neatly along a fence at the site. Ready to grab and throw.
In answer, we have this wonderful tweet from President Trump:

The Mayor of Buffalo, New York was not as weak as other mayors - from Red State:

Buffalo Mayor Has Best Response to Rioter Who Set Fire to City Hall: ‘We Have You On Camera, You Idiot’

More at the site. Heh... And this heartening story but I would expect no less - this is Texas after all. From Breitbart:

Armed Texans Defend Alamo from Potential Rioters

Again, much more at the site. Interesting times. And, the funny thing is that this is going to sway a lot of black voters and quasi-liberals over to President Trump's side in November. The agitators are cutting their own throats - they are the squeaky wheel that is about to be covered in more grease than they know how to deal with.

And the hatch is open

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Dragon just opened the hatch between it and the ISS - first time for a commercial manned spacecraft and a return to US launches.

Heading out for coffee and picking up a dehumidifier (Craigslist deal)

UPDATE: And Bob and Doug just entered the space station

Now, I am out the door...

Start reading here

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Great understanding of what is going wrong with the liberal platform - from wretchardthecat:

And that didn't take long at all:

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Having problems with the truth are we?

Opening the hatch

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The astronauts are at the ISS and ready to board - watch live on YouTube

One of my regular reads has decided that 21 years is enough. From Walter's website:

A good run: Overlawyered, 1999-2020
I published the first Overlawyered post on July 1, 1999, and I expect this post on May 31, 2020 will be the last.

As someone in the entertainment world once put it, “Leave before they want you to leave.” I appreciate the outpouring of good wishes in recent days.

My gratitude to all those who have made it possible, including the Cato Institute, which has published the site for the past 10 years. And especially to the readers.
— Walter Olson

A long and wonderful run - Good luck and God Speed Walter!

Teach your children well

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Interesting news from The Gateway Pundit:

Minnesota Governor’s Daughter Hope Walz Was Tweeting Out Intel to Violent Looters and Rioters Just Like Ilhan Omar’s Daughter Isra Hirsi
We knew from recent rallies and riots that it’s highly likely the groups behind today’s riots are Domestic terrorists, revolutionary communists, US based radical Islamist organizations and others related to the Democrat Party.  Today we have more proof this is the case.

We reported a few days ago that Minnesota Representative Ilhan Omar’s daughter tweeted out support for the protestors:

Minnesota Democrat Rep. Ilhan Omar’s daughter Isra Hirsi, retweeted a list of supplies for “comrades” who are rioting in Minneapolis.

Isra Hirsi is the co-founder of US Youth Climate Strike and her Twitter bio says she ‘hates capitalism.’

Jim quotes some of Isra's tweets and then has this:

But there is more to this story. Similar tweets supporting the rioters were being tweeted by Minnesota Democrat Governor Tim Walz’s daughter – Hope Walz. She later deleted her account.

This appears to be how Democrats and Islamists are communicating instructions regarding the riots – through their children!

Of course the account was deleted but not before some screen caps were taken. Posted for your viewing pleasure at the site. Disgusting.

Remember: It is not Trump they are after, it is us, he is just in the way.

The weather is much quieter this morning - the sky is completely overcast but there is good visibility lower. I can see Whidbey Island (eight miles) and some of the Olympic Mountains are peeking through on the horizon. Forecast is for wind but only 10% chance of rain - looks like that storm has blown over. The local river got pretty high with all the precipitation but it has crested and is on its way down again:

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I was thinking of the rioting this morning and the Book of Isaiah came to mind - 59:7-9 - King James of course:

Their feet run to evil, and they make haste to shed innocent blood: their thoughts are thoughts of iniquity; wasting and destruction are in their paths. The way of peace they know not; and there is no judgment in their goings: they have made them crooked paths: whosoever goeth therein shall not know peace. Therefore is judgment far from us, neither doth justice overtake us: we wait for light, but behold obscurity; for brightness, but we walk in darkness.

It will be interesting to see the aftermath - we are certainly gathering the agitators digital footprints - we can also trace the flow of money. Will we have the stones to go after them and roll this organization up and lock it away. The mokes we see on the news are just the useful idiots but there is pure domestic terrorism operating not that far off in the background. The left is panicking and bringing out everything in their playbook to stop President Trump from having a second term. The election is only 156 days away. Interesting times.

Anyway, surf for a bit, coffee and then working at home today. Bills, garage, some laundry and the house could use a good cleaning.

And that is it for me tonight

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Sleepy - the sound of the rain on the roof is hypnotic and delicious.

Need to finish putting dinner away and run the dishwasher. Sleep after that.

Well... Maybe ONE video. Or two.

Perfect - from Canada's Global News:

‘Path to citizenship’: U.K. may extend visa rights to nearly 3 million in Hong Kong
Britain is prepared to offer extended visa rights and a pathway to citizenship for almost three million Hong Kong residents in response to China’s push to impose national security legislation in the former British colony.

China’s parliament has approved a decision to go forward with national security legislation for Hong Kong that democracy activists, diplomats and some in the business world fear will jeopardize its semi-autonomous status and its role as a global financial hub.

Sure you can take over the land. It is a decent port and centrally located. The people and the businesses? Sorry but they are now all English and will not be Chinese subjects. China gets a hollow shell - fitting as that is what the rest of China is anyway.

Good - make it hurt - the rioters

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From the New York Post:

AG Barr vows to prosecute protesters under 1960s anti-riot law
Attorney General Bill Barr will go after violent demonstrators with a 1968 law meant to quell rioting.

“We must have law and order on our streets and in our communities,” Barr said Saturday at DOJ headquarters in Washington, DC.

“It is a federal crime to cross state lines or to use interstate facilities to incite or participate in violent rioting,” he said. “We will enforce these laws.”

Barr accused “anarchistic and far-left extremists, using Antifa-like tactics” for the unrest that has spread to cities throughout the nation since Monday, in the wake of the death of George Floyd while in the custody of Minneapolis police.

“Groups of outside radicals and agitators are exploiting the situation to pursue their own separate and violent agenda,” he said.

The federal Anti-Riot Act, part of the Civil Rights Act of 1968, carries penalties of up to five years in prison.

Let these mokes face the fact that they are looking at up to five years of hard time and 99% of the rioting and looting will vanish. Set some examples to reinforce the point and no slaps on the wrist for Daddy's girl. Riot? Pay the price. They are not playing nice with us, we should reciprocate.

Bummer ☹

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The strawberries looked fantastic but they were still quite a ways from being ripe. I will enjoy them in a few days, just not for dessert tonight.

Everything else was fantastic - simple dish that originated as slave food and became the national dish of Brazil.

From the master's lips

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UPDATE to the second story at the bottom of post

Two stories - first from One America News Network:

Killing Of Oakland Security Officer An ‘Act Of Domestic Terrorism’
Authorities have called the killing of a California federal security contract officer an “act of domestic terrorism.” Reports detailed Friday night’s incident, when a car pulled up outside the federal building in Oakland and someone opened fire.

The security officer was killed and another officer was critically wounded.

“When someone targets a police officer or a police station with an intention to do harm and intimidate, that is an act of domestic terrorism,” stated Acting DHS Deputy Secretary Ken Cuccinelli.

Second, from The Blaze:

Minnesota leaders say arrested protesters are not local residents: 'We don't know these folks'
The mayor of St. Paul, the sister city to Minneapolis, announced Saturday that every protester arrested during Friday's riots were from out-of-state.

Speaking at a press conference, Mayor Melvin Carter (D) said out-of-state agitators were responsible for the violent unrest in St. Paul on Friday. Demonstrations erupted in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area this week in response to the tragic death of George Floyd.

"Every single person we arrested last night, I'm told, was from out of state. What we are seeing right now is a group of people who are not from here," Carter said.

Looks like the government will be getting serious. Like I said in the last post, someone is spending a lot of money trying to destabilize America. George Soros' fingerprints are all over this.

UPDATE: Turns out the Minnesota leaders did not have their facts correct - from Breitbart:

Majority of Arrested Minneapolis Rioters Have Minnesota Addresses
Jail records show that the vast number of arrested Minneapolis protesters have Minnesota addresses.

Fox 9 reports that 38 of the 45 individuals arrested have an address in Minnesota. The 45 individuals are those arrested “for rioting, unlawful assembly, stolen property, burglary or robbery on May 29 and May 30.”

On May 30, 2020, CNN reported Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz (D) suggesting “rough estimates indicate that about 20% of protesters are Minnesotans and about 80% are from outside the region.”

Walz added, “I’m not trying to deflect in any way.”

From the Seattle FOX affiliate Q13:

Multiple Seattle police vehicles set on fire, destroyed amid protests
Multiple Seattle police vehicles were set on fire and destroyed as thousands of demonstrators descended upon the downtown area.

Q13 News reporters witnessed the police cruisers burn around 4:00 p.m. Saturday near Westlake Center.

I bet these are 80% non-Seattle residents. There is a lot of money being spent these days trying to stir up as much trouble as possible. Interstate so the FBI needs to get involved.

Maybe I should buy several cases at Costco and scalp them after the election:

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Dinner

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Doing some more of the Feijoada tonight. When I did the grocery shopping this morning, I remembered that the farmer's market was today (not Sunday) so picked up some fresh veggies and a pint of the first strawberries of the season. Going to slice them up with a dusting of sugar to let some syrup develop. Picked up a loaf of angel-food cake and some whipping cream - I do the whipped cream with a small splash of single malt whiskey. The taste is divine - smokey and sweet. Really adds a lot. 

Get some rice going and saute up some more chard. Dinner in about an hour.

Raining pretty hard now - great night to spend indoors eating some comfort food...

And stayed in this area today

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The heavy weather started moving South into Oregon around 11AM and it has stayed there - this is from right now (4:00PM). Oregon has about 9,000 customers without power. Spectacular but a little too long a drive to make it worth my while:

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Had the great pleasure of watching the SpaceX launch - talk about flawless.

The first stage landed perfectly on an autonomous barge in the Atlantic Ocean - great name: Of Course I Still Love You
There have been three barges: the Just Read The Instructions and the Of Course I Still Love You. The first Just Read The Instructions was retired so the third barge carries on that name. The names are from a Science Fiction novel by Iain M. Banks.

President Trump was there and spoke a few words after the launch:

All in all, a great day for America. When I was in grade school, they would take us out of class to watch the Mercury and Gemini launches. I watched all of the Apollo launches and followed the various space programs closely. We are finally getting proactive again and getting back into space. So much of our technology today got its start in the space program - this new surge will serve as a major boost to R&D - I can not wait to see what new developments come from it.

And out for a little bit

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Coffee, mail, do some grocery shopping, hang out and read for a little bit and then decide if I want to drive to Eastern Washington to watch the lightning.

Puget Sound Electric has a bunch of customers (270+) without power near Bremerton - across the sound from Seattle. Oregon is less than 50, Vancouver, BC has about 800 customers out. Power here is fine - not even a bump (fingers crossed). The website Lightning Maps has a look at what is happening now - two snapshots:

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Raining pretty hard here - forecast is for an inch. Dark skies and socked in - visibility is about 4 miles.

Cliff Mass has an update: All Hell is About to Break Out

Back in a couple hours...

From his twitter feed:

And be sure to visit the link - the usual uninformed jackasses are commenting and people are punching back twice as hard. The truth is out there.

To remember with whom we are dealing - compare these two logos:

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High times in old Judah

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Interesting archeological find - from the Journal of the Institute of Archaeology - Tel Aviv University:

Cannabis and Frankincense at the Judahite Shrine of Arad
Two limestone monoliths, interpreted as altars, were found in the Judahite shrine at Tel Arad. Unidentified dark material preserved on their upper surfaces was submitted for organic residue analysis at two unrelated laboratories that used similar established extraction methods. On the smaller altar, residues of cannabinoids such as Δ9-teterahydrocannabinol (THC), cannabidiol (CBD) and cannabinol (CBN) were detected, along with an assortment of terpenes and terpenoids, suggesting that cannabis inflorescences had been burnt on it. Organic residues attributed to animal dung were also found, suggesting that the cannabis resin had been mixed with dung to enable mild heating. The larger altar contained an assemblage of indicative triterpenes such as boswellic acid and norursatriene, which derives from frankincense. The additional presence of animal fat―in related compounds such as testosterone, androstene and cholesterol―suggests that resin was mixed with it to facilitate evaporation. These well-preserved residues shed new light on the use of 8th century Arad altars and on incense offerings in Judah during the Iron Age.

Quite a long and fascinating paper - they dive deep into the history of the area, the use of Cannabis and other drugs in ritual and medicine as well as talking about the economics of trade - frankincense is not from the area, it was traded.

Rolling thunder

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Looks like I may not even have to drive to Eastern Washington. The skies are dark, raining and thunder is rolling around. Was typing that there was "no visible lightning" when a bolt flashed about five miles away over Whidbey Island.

Puget Sound Energy reports 4,618 people without power South of Seattle.

Massive strike on the island - about a mile away. Unplugging the battery chargers for the cameras and moving them to a protected outlet.

Crazy times

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Lots of evidence that the rioting in major cities is being funded and organised by Antifa and other groups affiliated with George Soros and other hard-left groups.

This is not grass roots, this is the Democrat party trying to destabilize our nation so they can ram through their agenda. Hopefully, the last gasp of their efforts.

Scheduled to launch today

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Looking forward to watching the Falcon 9 • Crew Dragon Demo 2 launch today.
Scheduled for a little after noon my time (3:22EDT).

Everything looking good so far...

Decisions decisions...

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Looks like some rare conditions in central Washington today - from the National Weather Service - Storm Prediction Center for this morning:

...THERE IS AN ENHANCED RISK OF SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS OVER PORTIONS OF CENTRAL/NORTHERN OREGON AND CENTRAL/EASTERN WASHINGTON...

...SUMMARY...
Scattered severe thunderstorms, offering destructive winds and hail, are expected today over parts of the interior Pacific Northwest, east of the Cascades.

...Synopsis...
A high-amplitude upper-air pattern will influence the CONUS this period, with a deep mean trough persisting over the northeastern Pacific, and another major trough extending from a cyclone over Baffin Island southward to the central/southern Appalachians. In between, a sharp ridge will move slowly eastward from the Rockies across the adjoining High Plains. A formerly cutoff cyclone -- its center now apparent in moisture-channel imagery west of the central CA coastline -- will accelerate north-northeastward while devolving into a strong shortwave trough. By 00Z, the vorticity max representing the core region of the cyclone should reach northernmost CA. By 12Z, the negatively tilted shortwave trough should reach southern WA, eastern OR and western ID.

Highway 20 is open across the Cascades - Stevens Pass opened about a month ago so it would be a 400 mile drive this afternoon and evening. Seriously considering heading over there with cameras.  I do love a good thunderstorm and this forecast sounds like an epic one. Time to get the camera batteries charging and some memory cards cleaned off - make my decision around 1PM today or so.

Gorgeous sunrise this morning if that is any indication - red skies in morning and all that...

The Debate

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I side with Daffy here:

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A good way of looking at it

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An excellent observation on a post at FrontPage - they are talking about California's program of bailing out illegal aliens and how that program is failing. This was in the comments section:

Because the Left does not know how to achieve global equity by raising the bottom up, only by bringing the top down.
That is an excellent observation!

When a leftist discusses economics they love the pie chart. They moan about inequality. They want to decide who gets a piece of what. They assume the pie exists. They ignore the baker who made it. The conservative more often will understand that the production of pie will produce pie every day. The Left wants to loot the bakery.

The Left- wealth exists.
The Right-wealth is created by someone willing to do the work.

If only people understood that socialism does its thing by lowering the standard of living for everyone, (except the new owners of the bakery). The self righteous Socialist feels good about his destruction.

And It doesn't take long before there is no pie for anyone.

Absolutely - this is one of my favorite topics as it is the basic flaw that underlies all of Karl Marx's writings - that the pool of capital is fixed and social inequality is a direct result of this pool being unequally distributed. Marx was unable to see that capital is fungible. It can be created. It can be destroyed. When you look at the foundational planks of Communism and Socialism, they are deeply flawed and based on hand-waving theories that make no sense in the light of day and have zero bearing in reality.

Capital created? A single mom created a multi-billion industry out of thin air.

Capital destroyed? The Bear Stearns bank collapse of 2007-8.  Where were the trucks? Six or seven billion dollars disappeared. Who hauled it away? This was capital being destroyed.

Single mom? Harry Potter

Feijoada for dinner

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Finally got around to making it. Beans in the pressure cooker this afternoon and finished everything off a few minutes ago along with a pot of rice and some sauteed greens (rainbow chard).

Yummy stuff.

The brightest and best

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Gary Varvel has a behind the scenes look at the CDC:

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Hat tip to Mostly Cajun

Might even be worth a road trip to Eastern Washington to see - I love a good thunderstorm. From Cliff Mass:

Severe Thunderstorm Potential for Washington State
Portions of Washington State, particularly from the Cascade crest eastward, may see some very strong thunderstorms starting tomorrow morning and extending into the evening. Storms that may bring heavy rain, hail, lots of lightning, very strong winds and even the chance of a tornado-packing supercell thunderstorm.

And western Washington may get some heavy rain and perhaps some thunder.

The NOAA/NWS Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma has an unusual severe storm outlook for Saturday, with the greatest threat in central Washington and Oregon. You don't see that very often!

Should be one for the record books - all the elements are there in abundence.

Looks like the shit could be hitting the fan here. From Reuters:

Monkeys steal coronavirus blood samples in India
A troop of monkeys in India attacked a medical official and snatched away blood samples of patients who had tested positive for the novel coronavirus, authorities said on Friday.

The attack occurred this week when a laboratory technician was walking in the campus of a state-run medical college in Meerut, 460 km (285 miles) north of Lucknow, capital of Uttar Pradesh state.

“Monkeys grabbed and fled with the blood samples of four COVID-19 patients who are undergoing treatment ... we had to take their blood samples again,” said Dr S. K. Garg, a top official at the college.

And reassuring words from the Doctor:

“No evidence has been found that monkeys can contract the infection,” Garg told Reuters.

No evidence either way - just what we need. A repository living and commingling with a large population. A little mutation here and there and whammo.

Talk about weak (to the point of being non-existent) leadership - from Minnesota's Alpha News:

Minneapolis and St. Paul Will Have 8 P.M. Curfew
As Minneapolis and surrounding area braces for more riots and looting, Mayor Jacob Frey has declared an 8 P.M curfew. St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter declared a similar curfew for his city

The curfew will be enforced all weekend from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m.

The Mayor's edict can be found here: Emergency Regulation - Issued pursuant to MCO Section 128.60

Oooooo - that is going to really put a halt to this. The looters are already breaking the law - this Mayor thinks that a strongly worded Regulation is going to slow them down?

Back in a few

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Just three deliveries this afternoon - two new customers.

Back in a bit.

From Breitbart:

America Terminating Relationship with World Health Organization
President Donald Trump on Friday announced at the White House that the United States would terminate its relationship with the World Health Organization.

The president said that Chinese officials failed to report details of the coronavirus properly to the World Health Organization (WHO) and pressured the organization to mislead the world about the its dangers.

“Countless lives have been taken and profound economic hardship has been inflicted all around the globe,” he said.

Trump said that the WHO failed to act on reforms that the United States had demanded, prompting his decision to end America’s role with the organization.

“We have detailed the reforms that it must make and engage with them directly, but they have refused to act,” he said.

Trump said that the United States would use the hundreds of millions previously sent to the WHO to other international aid programs.

It has been ten days since President Trump sent his "Come to Jesus" letter to them. They seem to have not replied to him so, time is up.

I love that we are not stopping foreign aid, we will now be watching where we give it and make sure that it goes where it will do the most good.

Kicking them right in the won-tons...

The rioting

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Horrible events - stirred up by outside agitators who melt into the woodwork when it comes to pay the butchers bill.
An interesting report from the Minneapolis, Minnesota Star-Tribune:

'Flash looting' spreads to St. Paul; squad cars pelted with rocks, bricks
Unrest spilled into St. Paul’s Midway district Thursday as looters ambushed stores and pelted police cars with rocks, bricks and liquor bottles, a violent outgrowth of George Floyd’s death in Minneapolis.

Officers responded to the Target store on University Avenue around 11:30 a.m. and found 50 to 60 people grabbing merchandise off the shelves without paying, police spokesman Steve Linders said. Many dropped the goods and ran when authorities arrived.

A fight broke out in the parking lot between a pedestrian and driver who reportedly tried to run down the person. The motorist missed and hit another vehicle.

“We continue to work to disperse the crowds, protect people and protect property,” according to a statement issued late Thursday afternoon by St. Paul police. “However, our officers continue to be assaulted, and the area is not safe.”

And, buried down in paragraph #27 - talking about Officer Chauvin's home:

A photographer at the house Thursday morning appeared to stage a shot in the officer’s driveway by encouraging two people to spray “Kill Pig Cops” on the garage door, according to Jennifer Kennetz of St. Paul. She said the woman claimed to be a magazine photographer and tried to persuade Kennetz and others to pose for her near the home.

Kennetz said she later saw the photographer persuade a young couple to spray paint the garage door while recording it with her cellphone. Police confiscated the phone, Kennetz said, and an Oakdale police spokeswoman confirmed the incident was under investigation.

Yes, a man was killed but these protests and riots are bringing out all of the perpetually aggrieved - people with agendas who want to tear down civil society and institute tyranny for the "good of all".

Where were the riots when Justine Damond was shot in the chest at point-blank range by Minneapolis Police Officer Mohamed Noor. This was on July 15, 2017. Got a lot of coverage in the media didn't it. If it wasn't for double standards, some people would have no standards at all...

And nothing

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Been a couple of very quiet days on the internet.

Heading out for coffee and the usual morning errands. Dump run later this morning and then grocery deliveries in the afternoon.

High clouds and sunshine - rain is forecast to move in this weekend.

Some headlines:

And these two stories - really shows the difference between clueless and leadership - first, from the New York Post:

Trump slams Minneapolis mayor over violent George Floyd protests
President Trump early Friday threatened to “get the job done right” to control the violent Minneapolis protests if the city’s mayor doesn’t “get his act together.”

“I can’t stand back & watch this happen to a great American City, Minneapolis. A total lack of leadership,” Trump tweeted.

“Either the very weak Radical Left Mayor, Jacob Frey, get his act together and bring the City under control, or I will send in the National Guard & get the job done right.”

Trump’s threat came as rioters in the city took over a police precinct and set it ablaze in protest of George Floyd’s death.

Absolutely, Frey is paralyzed. In engineering, when you have too many variables, you can "seize-up" and be unable to design a system. This is called "analysis paralysis". Mayor Frey is suffering from this. He just needs to act. Move one step at a time but take care of this because it will get worse if he does not. Nobody has died yet except for the unfortunate Mr. Floyd. So far. Time for action.

And then, there is this classic case of psychological projection from the Mayor's Office - from The Gateway Pundit:

As Police Station Goes Up in Flames, Minneapolis Mayor Frey Accuses Trump of ‘Weakness’ in Response to President’s Threat to Bring in National Guard to Stop Riots
Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey (D) lashed out at President Trump in an overnight press conference on the looting and burning of his city by protesters and Trump’s threat to bring in the national guard to save the city of Frey won’t.

Frey told reporters it was his decision Thursday night to have police officers abandon the 3rd Precinct police station that was taken over by protesters who looted and burned the building.

Wednesday night protesters rioted, looted and torched several businesses and buildings while protesting the death in police custody on Monday of George Floyd.

Frey is a weak man and is very much out of his depth. Something to remember too is that George Soros helps to fund the Black Lives Matter movement (here, here, here, here, here and here for starters).

And that is it for now

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Wound up taking a 90 minute nap after all but still tired so calling it an early evening. Big salad for dinner - watching some videos for a while.

Clouds moving in - nice and layered - really pretty sunset.

We all know about the choking death of George Floyd at the hands of a Police officer and the attendent media firestorm and public riots and looting. How about this story from Mississippi's Jackson Free Press:

After Video Emerges, JPD Investigating Officer Over Rough Treatment, Threats
A Jackson police officer, captured by video Friday pinning a young man by the neck backward to the top of a car, is on administrative leave pending an Internal Affairs investigation. In the video that started circulating Friday night, the officer is pressing the young man’s neck as he sounds like he is gagging. A young woman wearing a safety mask next to them keeps saying, “he can’t breathe.”

Jackson Police Department Public Information Officer Sam Brown said in a telephone interview today that the patrolman’s name is Myron Smith.

"When the video surfaced, it got to Chief James Davis, and he immediately placed (Smith) on administrative leave and turned it over him to Internal Affairs,” Brown said.

On the video, the officer stood over the young man, very close to his face, bending him backward onto the top of the car, seeming to hold him down by the neck and preventing his movement. More than one camera recorded the incident, while some passersby pleaded for the officer to let him go.

A bit more:

The Jackson Free Press viewed a video lasting about two minutes. It showed the woman attempting to push the officer's hands off the young man, with Smith not treating that act kindly. He shouted at her, saying: "Get off me, get off me, I say get off me."

When told by the woman, "he can't breathe, he is not able to breathe, he is shaking sir, he can't breathe," Smith responded, "Ma'am, do you see my hands? I am not even choking him” as he continued to hold him down on the black Toyota.

Yeah - one thing to consider. Officer Smith is black and the John Doe is white. Funny that this police brutality and attempted choking never made it to the mainstream media. Didn't fit the narrative I guess...

A lot of ninnies are worried about the "dangers" of 5G radiation. So much so that companies have sprung up to fill that lucrative niche. Presenting for your interest: 5G BioShield. From the site:

5GBioShield
the most advanced full-spectrum quantum nano-layer shielding technology is now available to the public
An impenetrable shielding and harmonisation of your home and family from all harmful imbalanced electric radiation (incl. 2G 3G 4G 5G WIFI)

The founder has this biography:

Dr. Ilija Lakicevic, Res. Prof.
Research Professor Ilija Lakicevic has dedicated his life to discover self and true concepts and laws of creation. He has worked at institutions as reputable as the Max-Planck-Institute for Plasma Physics. At the end of 2000, he left all organized and structured institutions and organizations and began his own independent research. After 10 years he discovered the truth about the human being and true universal concepts and Laws of Creation (unknown and unpublished until recently by himself in International Journal of Science and Research, October Issue 2019) – concepts and laws which can be applied to remediate all primary imbalances facing humanity and our planet. As pioneer of the New Energy physics, in 2006 he successfully demonstrated transformation of the quality (degree of centeredness) of the microwave radiation of a cell-phone using a self-created multilayered structure without any electric and electronic components (i.e.: nano-layer) in the form of a holographic patch. This new technology which he calls ‘I-Change’ has been certified by the Hado Life Institute of the famous Dr. Masaru Emoto and some other independent measurements.

More buzzwords than you can shake a stick at - looks like the new-age movement is still alive and well.

The reference to Dr. Emoto is interesting as Emoto's work has been debunked time after time. He theorized that water could hold human emotions and when frozen, the shape of the ice crystals would change depending on how the water was "loved" or "hated". I got two of his books from the local library out of curiosity and the photographs are stunningly bad and inconclusive. There is no science here, only speculation and cherry-picked images.

Needless to say, you can purchase your own 5GBioShield for only $350 or so. A computer security company tested it and found it wanting - from Ars Technica:

A $350 “anti-5G” device is just a 128MB USB stick, teardown finds
Believers of 5G conspiracy theories have apparently been buying a $350 anti-5G USB key that—not surprisingly—appears to just be a regular USB stick with only 128MB of storage.

As noted by the BBC today, the "5GBioShield" USB stick "was recommended by a member of Glastonbury Town Council's 5G Advisory Committee, which has called for an inquiry into 5G." The company that sells 5GBioShield claims it "is the result of the most advanced technology currently available for balancing and prevention of the devastating effects caused by non-natural electric waves, particularly (but not limited to) 5G, for all biological life forms."

The product's website charges £283 for a single 5GBioShield, which converts to nearly $350. That's what it costs to get "protection for your home and family, thanks to the wearable holographic nano-layer catalyser, which can be worn or placed near to a smartphone or any other electrical, radiation or EMF emitting device."

And one of the comments sums it up perfectly:

The company that sells 5GBioShield claims it "is the result of the most advanced technology currently available for balancing and prevention of the devastating effects caused by non-natural electric waves, particularly (but not limited to) 5G, for all biological life forms."

In fairness, when this device is in use, you will suffer no harmful effects of 5G.

Also, when this device is not in use, you will suffer no harmful effects of 5G, but there's no reason to muddle their sales pitch with that information.

Now, if you want something that really works, just send $3,141.59 in untraceable currency to the following post office box. I have a powerful device that works throughout the solar system. Give me your coordinates and I will make sure that your area is protected from 5G radiation. Plus, I have a bridge in New York City that you might be interested in buying...

Whoops - say Buh-Bye Amy

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Her past catches up with her - from The Week:

Amy Klobuchar didn't prosecute officer at center of George Floyd's death after previous conduct complaints
George Floyd's death in police custody is renewing criticism of Sen. Amy Klobuchar's (D-Minn.) prosecutorial record.

Before she became a senator and a top contender for former Vice President Joe Biden's vice presidential spot, Klobuchar spent eight years as the Hennepin County attorney, in charge of prosecution for Minneapolis. And while in that position, Klobuchar declined to prosecute multiple police officers cited for excessive force, and did not prosecute the officer who kneeled on Floyd's neck as he protested, The Guardian reports.

Ex-Minneapolis police officer Derick Chauvin saw at least 10 conduct complaints during his 19-year tenure before he was fired Tuesday, according to a database that documents complaints against police. In particular, he was involved in the shooting death of a man who had stabbed other people before attacking police, as well as some other undisclosed complaints. Klobuchar did not prosecute Chauvin and other officers involved for the first death, which occurred in October 2006 while she was running for Senate. The case was under investigation when Klobuchar took office in the Senate in Jan. 2007, and later went to a grand jury, which declined to charge the officers. Chauvin was later placed on leave when he and other officers shot and wounded a Native American man in 2011.

What Chauvin did was unconcionable. For him to still be on the active force after ten complaints during 19 years is unreal.

Finally - got a haircut

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Where I live is about four miles from the county border. My favorite barber has his shop in the next county and it is still locked down. I was overdue for a cut when the lockdown first happened so I was pretty shaggy until this afternoon.

Island County has reopened and saw that a local salon was open and that they did Men's Haircuts - got a nice one today. Feels a lot better. It is right next to the complex where I get my coffee and mail so keeping things very local.

Was at Costco and meat prices are skyrocketing - flank steak is now almost $14/pound - it was about $8 just a month or two ago. Pork has doubled. Costco has signs apologizing and saying that they are keeping their margins constant and that prices will drop when supply increases but... right...

Feeling downright nappish - making a pot of black tea.

President Trump put his money where his mouth is this morning - from FOX News:

Trump signs social media executive order that calls for removal of liability protections over 'censoring'
Flanked by Attorney General Bill Barr, President Trump signed an executive order in the Oval Office on Thursday that interprets Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act of 1996 (CDA) as not providing statutory liability protections for tech companies that engage in censorship and political conduct.

The president's order, which also cuts federal funding for social media platforms that censor users' political views, came just two days after Twitter took the unprecedented step of slapping a "misleading" warning label on two of Trump's tweets concerning the fraud risks of nationwide mail-in balloting. The move immediately backfired: Experts disputed that Trump's tweet was actually misleading, in part because mail-in balloting has been linked to ongoing fraud; Twitter's fact-check itself contained false statements; and Twitter failed to apply the standard of review to other users.

At Thursday's signing ceremony, Trump called the fact-check "egregious," and held up a photo of Twitter executive Yoel Roth, who heads up the site's fact-checking and rules-making operation. Fox News reported on Wednesday that Roth has mocked Trump supporters, called Trump's team "ACTUAL NAZIS," slammed "scary trannies" in New York City, and called GOP Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell a "bag of farts." (In a statement, Twitter did not dispute Fox News' reporting, but called it "unfortunate.")

Good - they are getting all sorts of tax breaks and incentives to grow their business. They need to play nice with everyone, not just their bubble buddies.

And got nothing this morning

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Quiet news day on the internet.

Heading out for a bit - working at home today.

High overcast - got rain forecast for Saturday and Sunday.

Pushing back - police in Illinois

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Good - maybe the Governor will stop trying to be such a petty tyrant. From PJ Media:

IL Governor Pritzker Threatens Local Police Who Don't Enforce His Edicts
Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker is having a difficult time getting people to follow his diktats on his restrictions for the coronavirus. So, after throwing a few tantrums, he put his foot down and threatened to cut off funding for counties that refused to enforce his edicts and has had business owners arrested who have dared to defy him.

He sicced the state police on a tiny church in rural Illinois that met in person in defiance of his church-closing policy. He was one of the first governors to whine about how little Trump was doing to help the states while GOP governors in neighboring Missouri and Indiana were managing just fine.

In recent weeks, enforcement departments in rural areas of the state have indicated in no uncertain terms that they were through enforcing Pritzker’s iron will. That brought a blast from Pritzker’s office designed to put those departments in their place.

People all over are getting tired of this manufactured crisis and of Democrats behaving badly.
Time to clean house (and senate) and get our nation back on a decent footing.

And nothing

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Quiet night on the internet.

The Chinese food was good. Parked by the river and some people pulled in next to me about 15 minutes later. They looked familiar, looked again and they were friends from my old place near Mt. Baker. Down for an afternoon of off-road motorcycle riding. They had gotten some tacos from a really good place near where my favorite Thai and Chinese places are. Chatted for a while.

High clouds with more to come - a beer or three sounds really good now. Have not gone back to drinking as much or having any sort of compulsion - just enjoying a beer from time to time. Feeling a lot better and getting a lot more done.

See what the YouTube faeries have drug in for tonight...

True colors

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She let the mask slip a little bit today - from Breitbart:

Nancy Pelosi: ‘Every Crisis’ Including Coronavirus Is an Opportunity to Advance Leftist Agenda
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said during a press conference on Wednesday that “every crisis” is an opportunity to advance a leftist agenda.

“We have to open the economy, we have to do so in a way that gives more opportunity for access to care, to credit, to opportunity,” Pelosi said during a press conference regarding her coronavirus phase four bill, the HEROES Act.

You can watch the digusting harridan - C-SPAN has the video

Using a crisis is straight out of the Cloward-Piven playbook. They cannot advance on their own merit so they have to manipulate the system.

No apology as yet

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Joe Biden has not apologised for his "you ain't black" comment. Today, he started passing the buck. Just the headline is all you need. Click for full story.

Biden: My ‘Ain’t Black’ Comment Was A Response To Charlamagne Tha God Being A ‘Wise Guy’

He is being used by the Democrats as a place-holder. They probably have someone to slip in just before the convention. Michelle O?

Almost feel sorry for the guy - almost...

From America's Newspaper of Record:

TIME Names Karen Person Of The Year
Time's Person of the Year issue has highlighted some of the world's most influential, important, and controversial figures for almost 100 years. After weeks of intense internal deliberation, Time Magazine has officially announced its Person of the Year: Karen.

"Karen could be any of us. She could be all of us," said Edward Felsenthal, Editor in Chief of Time. "For years, we have been under the watchful protection of everyday heroes who are dedicated to righting all wrongs, no matter how tiny or insignificant. Today, that watchful protector has a name, and her name is Karen."

20200527-karen.jpg

Strange times indeed.

And out for a few hours

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Got five deliveries today. Probably heading out for Thai or Chinese after - do not feel like cooking.

Well crap - they scrubbed

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Was looking forward to the launch but the weather was not good enough. They are rescheduling to next Saturday.

Obama's Legacy - an analysis

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Some great stuff by one of my favorite writers and historians - Victor Davis Hanson:

The Remains of an Administration
Each day that the Obama administration fades into the past, its wrongdoings manage to wander back into the present.

After years of suppression, all sorts of strange events keep popping up to remind us of what little is left of the Obama years — the Susan Rice memo, Christopher Steele deleting his computer records, FBI-doctored and lost 302s, text messages wiped clean, the bizarre Obama January 5, 2017, Oval Office meeting, the ambush interview of Michael Flynn, the unmasking and leaking of redacted names swept up in reverse-targeting surveillance operations, the administration fraud perpetrated on the FISA courts. The list is so overwhelming and bizarre that it ensures that anything at any time can now appear. And the result keeps reminding Americans of how corrupt were the years between 2009 and 2017 and how untruthful was the coverage of such institutionalized wrongdoing.

Emeritus Barack Obama now and then ventures out to go through the motions of an enfeebled defense for what is becoming an increasingly discredited administration. But his heart is not in it. His mind is elsewhere. His cause is no longer social activism and community organizing, if it ever was, but lucre and the perceived well-earned good life. The arc of his moralizing universe is long, but for the anointed like him, it apparently bends toward the just deserts of riches and material bounty.

First lady forever and bestselling memoirist Michelle Obama sometimes takes a hiatus from making millions to offer a half-hearted progressive warning about the sudden heartlessness of the country — reminiscent of her transitory 2008 warnings about a downright mean country and one of which she had previously not been especially proud.

The remains of the Obama team (Susan Rice, Ben Rhodes, Hillary Clinton, John Brennan, James Comey, Samantha Power) are not offering much of a defense for the Obama years — they are now too busy scrambling to hide their own legal culpability and exposure. The bending arc of the 2009 dream team finally ends in the platitudes of “I can’t remember” and “Not to my knowledge” that will eventually find their way from CNN and MSNBC into the court room.

A wonderful retelling of Obama's ascension and the decline of his legacy. Dr. Hanson is a national treasure.

Quote of the day

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Collectivism takes on many guises and seldom uses its own real name. Words like ‘community’ and ‘social’ soothe us into thinking that collectivist decision-making is somehow higher and nobler than individual or ‘selfish’ decision-making. But the cold fact is that communities do not make decisions. Individuals who claim to speak for the community impose their decisions on us all.“
Doug Bandow

Lunch break

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Or is it a launch break?

Back home - working in the garage and getting ready for a dump run this afternoon after grocery deliveries.

Surf for a bit.

And you guessed it

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Out for coffee and a few errands. Got another load of crap ready for the dump this afternoon. Grocery deliveries later today. Watch the rocket launch, mess around in the garage, try to figure out what to do with my old dog.

That is my day so far. Clear skies and warm - might work outside for a while.

Glued to the telly

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Planing to be watching the Space X launch in just under four hours from now. The first launch carrying live astronauts for the United States since the Space Shuttle program ended on July 21st, 2011. This makes it nine years that we had to use a Russian rocket ship to get access to space. Nine years too long.

The mission may be scrubbed due to weather - we will see. Planning to sit and watch regardless. History being made.

Our State - COVID deaths

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Looks like the Wuhan Flu causes gunshot wounds in WA State - from the Freedom Foundation:

Washington health officials: Gunshot victims counted as COVID-19 deaths
Today, officials at the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) confirmed that, as the Freedom Foundation reported on Monday, the state is counting in its COVID-19 death total the deaths of persons who tested positive for the virus but died from other causes.

In remarks made during a telephonic press briefing, DOH officials even acknowledged knowingly including multiple deaths caused by gunshot wounds in the state’s COVID-19 fatality count.

The Freedom Foundation’s original report, based on DOH documents and statements provided to the Foundation, concluded that, of the 828 COVID-19 deaths reported as of May 8:

    • 681 (82 percent) “list some variation of ‘COVID-19’ in one of the causes of death” on the death certificate;
    • 41 (5 percent) of the death certificates do not list COVID-19 as a cause of death, but indicate it was a “significant condition contributing to death.”
    • 106 (13 percent) deaths involved persons who had previously tested positive for COVID-19 but did not have the virus listed anywhere on their death certificate as either causing or contributing to death.

When asked about the Foundation’s report at a press conference Monday, Gov. Jay Inslee dismissed it as “dangerous,” “disgusting” and “malarkey.” He further accused the Freedom Foundation of “fanning these conspiracy claims from the planet Pluto” and not caring about the lives lost to COVID-19.

Yet DOH officials largely confirmed the main findings of the Foundation’s report in Thursday’s briefing.

Can't continue with the lockdown if you don't have the numbers and in true Democrat fashion, if you don't have the numbers? Cheat. Got to destroy that middle class - they think for themselves and they vote.

Our governor - WA State

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Hopefully, not for long - from the South China Morning Post:

Washington Governor Jay Inslee personally appealed to Xi Jinping for PPE, on advice of Chinese-American entrepreneur
A US state with close ties to Chinese President Xi Jinping’s alma mater directly petitioned the Chinese leader for protective clothing for its medical workers battling the coronavirus last month, leading to it receiving supplies from Sichuan province, Tsinghua University and other Chinese sources.

Jay Inslee, the governor of Washington state, wrote a personal letter to Xi on April 2 asking to “access the enormous productive capacity of China to obtain critically needed medical supplies” such as surgical masks, disposable gowns and gloves as state health authorities faced “extreme challenges” securing supplies.

The article continues to mention two reasons why this might not be such a good idea:

Beijing’s heightened screening followed complaints by some governments and hospitals that large quantities of PPE sent from China were below acceptable standards.

The governor’s plea also came as weeks of friction in US-China relations at the national level briefly appeared to be subsiding after Xi and US President Donald Trump agreed to a truce in their war of words over the origins of the coronavirus during a phone call in late March.

So China was exporting crap and President Trump called them on it. Set aside for the moment that Inslee should have had ample PPE on hand already, asking for it from the originator of the problem is just screwy. How about sending a letter to Ford or another American company. Weyerhaeuser (way-er-hau-zer) is a huge timber company with a major presence in WA State - they manufacture paper and pulp products and would be the perfect go-to people for filter masks.

Looking forward to this November when we vote in a real leader.

And that is it...

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Been a quiet day on the internet. Watching some video and then to sleep.

Beautiful sunset - clear skies so will get colder but have the space heater kicked on low. Forecast for tomorrow is slightly warmer. Working at home and have grocery deliveries in the afternoon.

Grace broke training this afternoon and went after another bicycle rider this afternoon. No problem but this is very disconcerting. I stopped on my way home from Bellingham today and took them for a nice long walk off-leash on the railroad right-of-way that I like - a couple miles and some good areas to just run. She will be 13 this fall and is starting to exhibit some behavioral issues - continually trying to assert dominance. She is alpha over Bear but she is testing me too. Not good. Looks like I need to keep her on a lead whenever they are outside from now on. Crap.

Anyway, good day today and tomorrow should be even better.
At least, that is what the voices in my head keep telling me 🙂

As always, follow the money - from Yahoo News:

Andrew Cuomo gave immunity to nursing home execs after big campaign donations
As Governor Andrew Cuomo faced a spirited challenge in his bid to win New York’s 2018 Democratic primary, his political apparatus got a last-minute boost: a powerful healthcare industry group suddenly poured more than $1m into a Democratic committee backing his campaign.

Less than two years after that flood of cash from the Greater New York Hospital Association (GNYHA), Cuomo signed legislation last month quietly shielding hospital and nursing home executives from the threat of lawsuits stemming from the coronavirus outbreak. The provision, inserted into an annual budget bill by Cuomo’s aides, created one of the nation’s most explicit immunity protections for healthcare industry officials, according to legal experts.

Critics say Cuomo removed a key deterrent against nursing home and hospital corporations cutting corners in ways that jeopardize lives. As those critics now try to repeal the provision during this final week of Albany’s legislative session, they assert that data prove such immunity is correlating to higher nursing home death rates during the pandemic – both in New York and in other states enacting similar immunity policies.

Hiding it in the middle of a budget bill? He pulled the same shit to get around the Executive Order against sanctuary cities. Class act. Will people remember this in 2022? Hope so.

He is representing the big money industries, not the people of New York - they are just pawns. Rubes.
Give them bread and circuses and then ignore them - ignore the little people.

Lazy day - lack of focus

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Got the plumbing project done (compressed air line in the garage) and did some work in the music room but feeling very sleepy and lazy. Turned into a wonderful spring day so pissing around in the garage and have the house completely open and airing out. 68°F outside so perfect temperature. Mt. Baker is gleaming from across the water.

Nothing happening out in the internet - slow news day. Grace and Bear are still gnawing away on their bones, the hummingbirds are out in force and the bees are happy with their feeders.

Lunch was a large sandwich so feel like a salad for dinner tonight. Making the Feijoada tomorrow.

Joe Biden - a joke

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First of many I would presume - from Grouchy Old Cripple

During a dull DNC dinner, Mrs. Biden leaned over to chat with Chuck Schumer.

“I bought Joe a parrot for his birthday. That bird is so smart, Joe has already taught him to say over two hundred words!”

“Very impressive,” said Chuck, “but, you do realize he just speaks the words. He doesn’t really understand what they all mean.”

“Oh, I know”, replied Mrs. Biden, “but neither does the parrot.”

An interesting bit of history from the London Daily Mail:

Wuhan virus lab was signed off by EU Brexit chief Michel Barnier in 2004 - despite French intelligence warnings that China's poor bio-security reputation could lead to a catastrophic leak
The construction of the Chinese laboratory at the centre of mounting suspicion over the source of the Covid-19 pandemic was signed off by the EU’s chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier – despite warnings by French intelligence services.

Mr Barnier – currently embroiled in acrimonious negotiations with the UK over a post-Brexit trade deal – was the French foreign minister when he gave the go-ahead for work to start on the Wuhan Institute of Virology in 2004, under a joint deal with the Chinese.

The move came despite strong opposition from French diplomatic and security advisers, who argued that the Chinese reputation for poor bio-security could lead to a catastrophic leak.

They also warned that Paris could lose control of the project, and even suggested that Beijing could harness the technology to make biowarfare weapons.

Eleven years later, as the laboratory prepared to open, the French architects of the project complained that they had, as feared, been ousted by the Chinese communist government.

Typical - steal the intellectual property and then do a piss-poor job if running it themselves. China needs to pay and pay big for this.

From New York's Syracuse.com:

Cuomo: NY coronavirus projections ‘all wrong,’ too early to tell if reopening is working
New York — It’s too early to say whether New York state’s regional reopening a week ago is keeping the coronavirus at bay, because the virus can take up to 10 days to result in serious symptoms, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said on Monday.

And this:

“Now, people can speculate, people can guess, I think next week, I think two weeks, I think a month,” Cuomo said. “I’m out of that business, because we all failed at that business. All the early national experts, here’s my projection, here’s my projection model, they were all all wrong, they were all wrong.”

Projections had far more hospitalizations, intubations and deaths than have occurred so far. In Central New York, a projection two months ago had the virus claiming 2,000 lives in a year under the best scenario (there have been 115 deaths so far).

“Now, there are a lot of variables, I understand that," Cuomo continued. "We didn’t know what social distancing would actually amount to, I get it. But we were all wrong. So I’m sort of out of the guessing business.”

That is what gets me - all the models were high when, for a statistical model, there should be a bell-curve distribution around the actual average. The models were all high by at least 10X with some at 100X and higher. Stunningly bad science. One could almost think that their decisions were being driven by something other than science. Agenda maybe? Narrative?

Disgusting. From Disrn:

Nursing homes, assisted living facilities account for 42% of COVID-19 deaths despite being just 1.6% of U.S. population
Around 42% of coronavirus deaths have been in nursing homes, according to analysis done by The Foundation for Research on Equal Opportunity.

The foundation focused on deaths both in nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Minnesota had the highest percentage of deaths occurring in a nursing home or assisted living facility at 81%.

Just 1.6% of the population lives in nursing homes or residential care facilities, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

"Among states reporting nursing and residential care home fatalities from COVID-19, nursing homes account for 42.1% of those deaths," the report said. "If we simply assume that this share holds true in non-reporting states, we get to a national share of 42.1% (i.e., identical to the share in reporting states)."

More at the site. Disgusting but not surprising. I would kill myself before being committed into one of those places. Some are good but some need to be shut down, their buildings raised and the earth salted.

Back home for the day

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Got a small ham steak to make Feijoada for dinner tonight. Turned into a really nice day - glorious on the drive back down to the island.

Quick lunch&surf and then garage and music room.

And points North

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Puttered around this morning. Nothing much on the internet so heading out for coffee and then to Bellingham. Some nuts and bolts and some plumbing stuff as well as a load to the condo.

Back in a couple of hours.

Something to remember

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A bit of history:

20200526-laws.jpg

Democrats in the news - voting

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From National File:

Citizen Journalist Busts Democrat Mail-In Voting Nursing Home Scandal in Texas
Citizen journalist Colleen Vera has discovered evidence of what appears to be a massive voter fraud ring operating in the state of Texas involving mail-in voting and Democrat political campaigns. Evidence presented below includes a video of a Democrat campaign surrogate harvesting mail ballots from a nursing home, audio of a Democrat campaign worker admitting to harvesting ballots from a nursing home, and mail-in ballots from Harris County that all have the same handwriting and envelope process. Vera alleges that the campaign of Democrat Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee recently paid two convicted forgers, and that other Democrat campaigns have also paid convicted forgers for canvassing efforts.

Tip of the iceberg. Lots more at the site including photos of ballots with identical handwriting, payments made to forgers - lots more illegalities. They have nothing to run on so Democrats cheat. It is as simple as that.

And that is it - early night

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Feeling a bit sleepy - didn't get done all of what I wanted to but happy with today regardless.

Up to Bellingham tomorrow for a few things.

Back to a normal sleep schedule - up and down with the sun.

President Trump plays golf

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And the media excoriate him for doing it on Memorial Day. Clutching their pearls and heading for the fainting couch. Of course, they ignore The Lightbringer's penchant for the game.

Here is a list of the 322 times that President Obama hit the links.

Including the following dates:

    • Monday, May 25, 2009
    • Monday, May 30, 2011
    • Saturday, May 26, 2012
    • Saturday, May 25, 2013
    • Saturday, May 24, 2014
    • Saturday, May 23, 2015
    • Saturday, May 28, 2016

All of them are on the Memorial Day weekend. In 2010, Obama was visiting Chicago.

Later this summer

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Going to be interesting to see how we all "wake up" - saw this and it resonated:

20200525-plague.jpg

Cleaned them and waiting for them to sanitize. I am trying sodium hydroxide drain cleaner (pure lye crystals).  Did it once before (last week) and it worked really well to get the gunk out of the bottles. The bottles are great - hold 32 ounces of nectar - but their neck is small and that makes them hard to clean. Using a chemical helps a lot. There is a fungus that can grow in the nectar (here and here) and it causes real problems with the birds if the feeders are not maintained at least once/week and kept absolutely clean.

Drain cleaner sounds a bit odd but it is working really well - there is a lot of activity in the bottles. I rinse them out, put in about a teaspoon of cleaner and fill the bottle with warm water. It proceeds to fizz slowly for a good 30 minutes - this is the NaOH "eating" up all the organic residue. When the fizzing stops, the glass is scrupulously clean. I rinse twice and then slosh some vinegar to neutralize the NaOH and then rinse again. Let dry completely and then they are ready to use. The plastic platforms, I hand wash with soap and water.

I used to use a 10% Clorox solution but that didn't really get rid of the residue, just bleached it. It was sanitary but not clean. This way, it is both.

Talking about Joe Biden - the Babylon Bee:

To Save Time, The Babylon Bee Will Now Just Republish Everything Biden Says Verbatim
The Bible tells us to work smarter, not harder. Or, better yet, don't work at all if you can help it. You can look it up. It's in the Proverbs somewhere.

That's why we're announcing today that we will simply be republishing everything Joe Biden says word for word rather than spending a lot of time and effort writing satire.

We at The Babylon Bee realized we were spending all this time trying to satirize Joe Biden when, frankly, he just can't be satirized. He's doing all the hard work for us with statements like "You ain't black!" and, of gun violence, that "150 million people have been killed since 2007."

Every day is a real grind when we arrive at the sprawling Babylon Bee headquarters, settle in on our throne of Chick-fil-A sandwiches, and boot up the ol' PC to check what Biden said over the past 24 hours. We're tired of trying to out-parody things like "I got hairy legs that turn blonde in the sun and the kids used to reach in the pool and rub my leg down and watch the hair come back up again" and "Corn Pop was a bad dude."

Like, what do you do with that? Seriously. Go ahead. Try to satirize it. Anything you do just doesn't have that perfect mix of absurdity and reality that makes satire work so effective at communicating truth. So we're throwing in the towel.

We'd also like to take this opportunity to thank Joe Biden for being such a great satirical performance artist. You're the real hero, Joe. The people really need comedy in a time like this, and you're doing a great job. Keep it up!

These things write themselves. Poor Joe is just a puppet for the Deep State. Kind of feel sorry for him - he must be feeling quite adrift.

From Breitbart:

Chicago Mayor Launches Police Raid to Shut Down Black Church’s Sunday Services
On Sunday, Chicago’s mayor, Lori Lightfoot, mounted a raid on a black South Side church for holding services in defiance of her coronavirus lockdown orders.

Lightfoot reportedly sent three marked squad cars and two unmarked cars full of officers to the Chicago Cornerstone Baptist Church in the South Side’s Woodlawn neighborhood. Woodlawn is just south of Hyde Park, the area in which the Obamas lived for a short time before Barack became president.

The pastor of the mostly black congregation, Courtney Lewis, reportedly shut and locked the doors and refused to allow the officers to gain entry to the building, Todd Starnes reported.

Pastor Lewis told Starnes that he felt like he was confronting “the Soviet-style KGB” as the officers pounded on his doors and demanded entry to shut the church down.

“Thankfully, our doors were locked as a normal safety precaution we take each service to protect our members from the escalating gun violence in Chicago,” Lewis said.

A sentry that is usually posted outside the sanctuary to monitor the street during service also reported seeing occupants of a dark car with tinted windows filming the incident through one opened window.

Glad that they refused entry - do not give them an inch. And, note that penultimate line: "“Thankfully, our doors were locked as a normal safety precaution we take each service to protect our members from the escalating gun violence in Chicago,” Lewis said."

What Mayor should be dealing with is this - from the Chicago Tribune:

Memorial Day weekend already deadliest in years with 36 shot, 9 killed in Chicago
Nine people already have been shot and killed in Chicago over Memorial Day weekend, making it the deadliest one since 2015.

The dead are among at least 36 people shot from Friday afternoon to Monday morning, according to data kept by the Tribune.

With a day to go in the long weekend, the number of shootings is approaching 2019′s total despite a coronavirus stay-at-home order, Saturday’s severe storms and added police patrols.

The year is not even half over and we have these numbers:

    • Year to Date
    • Shot & Killed: 186
    • Shot & Wounded: 838
    • Total Shot: 1024
    • Total Homicides: 206

And this despite some of the most stringent and draconian gun laws in the nation. Talk about being a shithole city. Having Pritzker for governor does not help.

Memorial Day

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Remembering all that have given their ultimate. I am of the age of the Vietnam war (draft lottery number was 348) and know several people who did not make it back.

President Trump at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier today:

And back again - steady drizzle

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The sprinkles have turned into a constant drizzle. Stopped at a favorite "hang-out" place and they now have tables and chairs set out. It is a building with a bunch of different food vendors, cooffee, bakery, gift shop, etc... and a nice place to sit and read and people watch. Glad to have that back to normal.

Picked up some veggies for tonight's dinner so grab a quick lunch and then to work.

And nothing happening here

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Time for some go-juice, a trip to the food coop and back home to work.

Rain rain go away

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Overcast - visibility is about two-three miles. Raining lightly.

Heading out for coffee in an hour - surf a bit first and take care of the dogs. Working in the garage today, cleaning and filling the hummingbird feeders and then, a project in the music room.

Not for a long long time - heat death of the universe kinda time. From Breitbart:

EU: ‘End of American-led’ World and Rise of China ‘Happening Before Our Eyes’
The European Union’s top diplomat has called for the bloc to have a “more robust strategy” toward China amid signs that Asia is replacing the United States as the centre of global power.

EU foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell told a gathering of German ambassadors on Monday that “analysts have long talked about the end of an American-led system and the arrival of an Asian century.”

“This is now happening in front of our eyes,” he said.

Borrell said the pandemic could be seen as a turning point in the power shift from West to East, and that for the EU the “pressure to choose sides is growing.”

He said the 27-nation bloc “should follow our own interests and values and avoid being instrumentalized by one or the other.”

Heh - the EU is crumbling and this moke wants to toady up to China? Makes a lot of sense: both are communists, both love the idea of the big central state and both want to control every aspect of peoeple's lives. Sounds like an absolute paradise to me - let me pack my bags and jump on the next plane.

Of course, Mr. Borrell would never be a farmer on the collective - he has to be one of the nomenklatura - the elite with his use of a nice gosdasha, his food ration coupons, his seat at the opera. Time for all of them to be tossed out on their ears. Their employment needs to be based on merit and accountability and not who can speak the party narrative the loudest.

A very good call - stock market

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In spite of all the lockdown foolishness, our government is actually doing some good work - from Money and Markets:

Why the Threat of Delisting Chinese Stocks Is Great News for Investors
The U.S. Senate approved legislation Wednesday that would require companies listed on stock exchanges to certify they aren’t under the control of a foreign government.

It specifically takes aim at companies based in China that could be working under the influence of the Communist government in Beijing.

And this had quite an effect:

The news sent shares of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. (NYSE: BABA) tumbling Wednesday. Shares were down another 3% through afternoon trading Thursday.

Lawmakers have expressed concern that American money is funding Chinese efforts to dominate fields from artificial intelligence to internet data collection.

“I do not want to get into a new Cold War,” Sen. John Kennedy, R-La., said on the Senate floor, adding that he wants “China to play by the rules.”

We are already in a cold war. China's imbalance of trade with us has been draining our economy and benefiting China for the last 20 years. Sure, the cheap toys are a lot of fun but there is a price to pay for them. Time to get this relationship back to an even footing.

And YouTube

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Nothing out there - watch some video and catch some Zzzzz's

From the London Daily Mail:

Lockdowns failed to alter the course of pandemic and are now destroying millions of livelihoods worldwide, JP Morgan study claims
Coronavirus lockdowns have failed to alter the course of the pandemic but have instead 'destroyed millions of livelihoods', a JP Morgan study has claimed.

Falling infection rates since lockdowns were lifted suggest that the virus 'likely has its own dynamics' which are 'unrelated to often inconsistent lockdown measures', a report published by the financial services giant said.

You do not get to be that big for that long (founded in 1799) without having some very smart people working for you.

I am not surprised at all. Why were all of their models more than 10X times overstated towards the high-danger. There were zero models showing minimal danger, it was always immediate and high and always 10X to 100X overstated. So much hype and bad science - no wonder the liberals turned it into a crisis so they could attempt to ram their agenda through.

Scary - from United Press International:

Risk for MS 30% higher for those living in cities, study finds
City-dwellers are nearly 30 percent more likely to be diagnosed with multiple sclerosis than those living in more rural areas, a study presented Friday at the European Academy of Neurology Virtual Congress has found.

Based on the results, which will also be published in European Journal of Neurology, air pollution could be a risk factor for the development of the disease, according to the authors, who conducted their research in Italy.

"It is well recognized that immune diseases such as MS are associated with multiple factors, both genetic and environmental," co-author Dr. Roberto Bergamaschi, of the IRCCS Mondino Foundation in Pavia, Italy, said in a statement.

"We believe that air pollution interacts through several mechanisms in the development of MS and the results of this study strengthen that hypothesis," he added.

Maybe that will point them in the direction of a cure. I know two people with it - not fun. A major impact into their quality of life.

Now that was good

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Short ribs over mashed potatoes and steamed asparagus. I am (almost) in heaven.

Second coat of paint is drying on the plywood - cut it to size and attached a bar to it. Got a lot done today - supposed to be rain tonight and tomorrow so music room and garage. Got some otters about 50 feet away - cute - just hanging out. Doing my weekly batch of hummingbird nectar tonight - got the bee feeders out too.

Surf for a bit and then to bed. 

For someone who wants to be President, Governor Cuomo is certainly acting like an ill-mannered tyrant. A two-fer:

First - how's the economy doing? From Patch:

Coronavirus Forces 100K NY Small Businesses To Close Permanently
The coronavirus crisis has forced more than 100,000 small businesses in New York to close permanently, the governor said Friday. The huge swath of closures means main streets will look at lot different when the state is allowed to reopen.

At most risk have been businesses that are owned by minorities, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said.

"Small businesses are taking a real beating," he said. "They are 90 percent of New York's businesses and they're facing the toughest challengers.

So then why didn't you manage the quarantine better and allow them to be open just like Walmart and Home Depot? He will be looking for a federal bail-out in 3... 2... 1...

Second - he cannot call NYC a sanctuary city any more (do this and you lose your Federal funding - Executive Order, January 25th, 2017) so he goes around the law. From the Buffalo, NY ABC affiliate WKBW:

Green Light Law amendment: Officers can be charged with felony
In April, Governor Andrew Cuomo passed the 2020 budget, and in it, an amendment was made to a law that was passed last year allowing undocumented immigrants to get a New York State driver’s license.

The Green Light Law also prohibited the sharing of DMV information to any federal agency in charge of immigration.

Last month, the original law was amended as part of the 2020 budget, now making it an E Felony for any law enforcement officer to share DMV records with another law enforcement agency in charge of immigration like ICE or DHS.

“Border Patrol for example, working the highway in the middle of the night and pulls over a vehicle, they can’t run the plates to determine who owns that vehicle,” said U.S. Attorney for the Western District of New York J.P. Kennedy. “I think it’s legislating obstruction and it’s very concerning to me.”

And needless to say:

We reached out to the Governor’s office for a statement and have not heard back.

Wonder how long it will take for someone in D.C. to address that directly. New York has a history of going back and forth between Republican and Democrat Governors - it will be interesting to see what happens when Cuomo is up for re-election in 2022.

Taking a break

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Garage project coming along well - paint is drying so waiting for that. Getting ready to set things up for dinner. Surf a bit and then back for another hour of work. Plants are still above ground... tomorrow...

Need to plant my goodies so doing that this afternoon. Maybe start on the music room this evening.

Back in a few hours...

Great choice for VP - Mike Pence

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President Trump could not have chosen better. Pence is quiet but gets a lot done. Two headlines - they link to the stories:

Absolutely - first link? This is to help the citizens who have been impacted by the government mandated shutdown. This is not a feed trough for slip-and-fall lawyers, ambulance chasers and other scam artists. Businesses should get an honest leg-up without being burdened by extra taxation and bureaucratic tomfoolery.

Second link? China needs to be called out on this. The WHO as well. They seriously screwed up and need to make reparations.

Like shooting fish in a barrel - from Robert Stacey McCain:

‘A Team of Editors’

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This is going to become the stuff of legend, so I wanted to take note of it: The New York Times decided to devote the entirety of its front page to a list of 1,000 names of COVID-19 victims. It’s Memorial Day weekend, and we are at or near the 100,000 mark in terms of nationwide death toll from the virus so . . . Well, there was some rationale for this, anyway, and the New York Times staff devoted hours to the project:

A bit more and then this:

Scarcely five minutes after their list was published, people on Twitter began pointing out an obvious error: Jordan Haynes, 27, of Cedar Rapids, Iowa, was the sixth name on the Times list, but he did not die of COVID-19. He was a homicide victim, whose body was found in a car in a wooded area near Interstate 380. Exactly how the “team of editors” made such a colossal blunder, we don’t know, but they’ve deleted Haynes’ name from the list and promised to publish a correction tomorrow.

Somehow, I am not surprised. Haynes' death helped push the narrative. They are not concerned about the facts, only the narrative. I wonder if they published any of the 8,000+ names of NY State citizens who actually did pass away from COVID while in a New York nursing home.

The farmer's market is on Saturday. DOH!

Fixing a light lunch - looking forward to the spare ribs for dinner tonight. Picked up some large Yukon Gold potatoes and some asperagus to go with.

Surf and then to work. Spent about $20 on some plant starts - Mouse Melon, a couple of sunflowers, some italian parsley and some mint.

From FOX News:

Cuomo attempts to deflect blame of deadly nursing home coronavirus debacle on to Trump
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo Saturday doubled down on his state's now-scrapped nursing home policy that critics say contributed to thousands of coronavirus deaths and instead blamed the problem on President Trump and his administration.

"New York followed the president's agencies' guidance," Cuomo said Saturday at his press conference. ".... What New York did was follow what the Republican Administration said to do. That's not my attempt to politicize it. It's my attempt to depoliticize it. So don't criticize the state for following the president's policy."

Heh - President Trump is going to have a field day with this piece of jack-assery. Just wrong on so many levels.

North Shore Dock  is a company in Michigan that stores boats, builds and maintains docs and provides marine services. One of the boats in their care belongs to the Governor of Michigan - Frau Whitmer.
From their Facebook page:

NorthShore Dock LLC
As everyone knows, weather in Northern Michigan is always changing and often is unpredictable. Spring 2020 has been another year for the record books. After the early Spring and relatively mild Winter NorthShore Dock began our Spring install season early and ready to take on the world--- and then Covid-19 happened. After the government mandated shutdown, we opened 5 weeks later with the same number of customers wanting their docks and boats, but with less time to get them in! Every year it is a puzzle to meet the requested dates and with the recent happenings, it made it even more interesting.

After a long day of keeping crews running, adhering to the additional safety regulations that need to be in place to operate our small business, and fielding calls from customers frustrated with our lagging installation schedule I was told that the Governor’s husband called asking for install availability. Up until this point we as a company had no idea we installed their dock or boat. I did not choose to ignore or change any plans we had. We simply let him know--- Sorry, we have a lot going on with very little time to get it done. We will get you in line to install as soon as we can, ALL our customers are valued and we cannot place you in front of others who scheduled earlier. This answer was met with respect and understanding.

Was karma in play? Maybe. The post about this incident was made on a personal page and has gone viral. It has since been removed as it has caused our already busy days before the holiday to be INSANE. As much as we know you would all like to talk press, we do not have time. We have work to do and we have a business to run. Thank you to those who have shared their support.

Michigan residents and specifically our NorthShore Dock followers--- we wish you health, happiness and SUNSHINE. We hope you enjoy your time here in Northern Michigan and we are happy to help with any dock, boat or storage needs. We hope to enjoy Summer 2020!

Major kudos to them for keeping things democratic and telling the governor's hubby to wait his place in line. Not at all surprised that he would be asking for an advantage though - that is what the "privileged elite" always get - it is their right.

Congress

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You have PRO-gress and then you have CON-gress - makes a lot of sense when you think about it that way:

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Gorgeous morning

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Woke up to a wonderful sunrise but rolled over and went back to sleep.

Was planning to check out a church on the island but they are still closed - maybe next week.

Putter around here for a bit, surf and then head out for coffee. There is a farmer's market today so will go to that. Working in the garage and music room today.

Food coma - short ribs

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God that was good! Cooked eight ounces - ate about three (three tacos) and saving the rest. Kept the juices and will reduce that down to a semi-Demi Glace and serve over mashed Yukon Gold potatoes with some grilled asparagus or such. Fork tender and perfect medium rare. All the connective tissues rendered into gelatin and gave a wonderful mouth-feel.

Been doing sous vide for over 20 years - way to go for the tough but flavorful cuts. Started off with a small beer cooler - keep a pot of water simmering on the stove to top it off as it cools down. Used a laboratory water bath I picked up at an auction for a long time. Now using an immersion heater/circulator

Never got to the music room today and still have to unload the two sheets of plywood from the van - will do that tomorrow. Surf for a bit and then an early bedtime.

And dinnertime

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Tacos - got some beef short ribs that have been cooking sous vide for a couple of hours. Picked up some fresh corn tortillas this afternoon so dinner should be delish. Turned out sunny so eating outside. Low-ish tide - lots of neighbors out walking along the beach.

From 90 miles:

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Psychological Projection

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A classic case on display here - from Beto O'Rourke (who is he? Like seriously - never even heard of the guy)

Be sure to go to the link in the first line and read the comments - about 90% dripping sarcasm as it should be.

Projection? From InfoGalactic:

Psychological projection
Psychological projection is a theory in psychology in which humans defend themselves against their own unconscious impulses or qualities (both positive and negative) by denying their existence in themselves while attributing them to others. For example, a person who is habitually rude may constantly accuse other people of being rude. It incorporates blame shifting.

Much more at the site - Projection is one of the major psychological quirks that liberal suffer from a lot more than conservatives. Others include Dunning-Kreuger, the inability to assume responsibilities for one's own actions (rules are for the little guy), the failure to lead, the failure to choose good leaders to lead for you, the inability to make a budget and stick to it, no concept of the future (when the bills come due). Thirty-five more here.
Think of a six year old boy and you get the general idea.

Dump run and then points North. Got some beef short ribs in sous vide - yummy taco meat in four hours.

Day has cleared up but still cool. Finishing a project in the garage when I get back with the plywood and then start in on the music room. Got another couple projects lined up for the next week or so - ham radio and electronics space upstairs in the loft. Picking up some fresh corn tortillas - simple pleasures.

Democrats have no platform to run on so they have to cheat. From the United States Attorney's Office -  Eastern District of Pennsylvania:

U.S. Attorney William M. McSwain Announces Charges and Guilty Plea of Former Philadelphia Judge of Elections Who Committed Election Fraud
United States Attorney William M. McSwain announced today that Domenick J. DeMuro, 73, of Philadelphia, PA, a former Judge of Elections for the 39th Ward, 36th Division in South Philadelphia, has been charged and has pled guilty to a two-count Information charging (1) conspiracy to deprive Philadelphia voters of their civil rights by fraudulently stuffing the ballot boxes for specific Democratic candidates in the 2014, 2015, and 2016 primary elections, and (2) a violation of the Travel Act, which forbids the use of any facility in interstate commerce (here, a cell phone) with the intent to promote certain illegal activity (here, bribery). U.S. Attorney McSwain’s video statement providing additional details about this case is available on the Office website here: https://www.justice.gov/usao-edpa/video/united-states-attorney-william-m-mcswain-announces-guilty-plea-former-philadelphia.

The Judge of Elections is an elective office and a paid position. In that role, DeMuro was responsible for overseeing the entire election process and voter activities of his Division. The Judge of Elections is charged with overseeing the Division’s polling place in accordance with federal and state election laws and is required to attend Election Board Training conducted by the Philadelphia City Commissioners.

The voting machines at each polling station, including DeMuro’s station, generate records in the form of a printed receipt documenting the use of each voting machine. The printed receipt, also known as the “results receipt,” shows the vote totals, and the Judge of Elections and other Election Board Officials at each polling place attest to the accuracy of machine results.

During his guilty plea hearing, DeMuro admitted that an unnamed political consultant gave DeMuro directions and paid him money to illegally add votes for certain Democratic candidates. These candidates were individuals running for judicial office whose campaigns had hired the consultant, as well as other candidates for various federal, state, and local elective offices who were preferred by this consultant for a variety of reasons.

What gets me is not that these people are bought but how cheaply they sell their souls:

After receiving payments ranging from between $300 to $5,000 per election from the consultant, DeMuro would add fraudulent votes on the voting machine – also known as “ringing up” votes – for the consultant’s clients and preferred candidates, thereby diluting and distorting the ballots cast by actual voters.

I also find it interesting that the voting machines would allow this kind of activity - hitting a candidate's button over and over again.

What to do today

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The Hammer

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Now this is interesting - Vox Day has the story:

The Hammer = American Spy Machine
Anonymous Conservative's predictions about the coming revelation of a massive surveillance state that has been spying on everyone appear to be rapidly coming to pass:

Flynn lawyer Sydney Powell just revealed on Fox Business that Obama had a massive and widespread secret surveillance system called the Hammer. I’ve always said, surveillance rolls out as a package. If you get database pulls, you get tech deployment and monitoring. If you get tech deployment and monitoring, you get observation posts. If you get observation posts, you get physical coverage. If you get physical coverage, you get infiltration into your social circle. If she is right and the Hammer is getting revealed, it will be more than just a boring computer screen with meaningless databases amassed in one place. It will basically be a domestic CIA with operations divisions, tech divisions, logistics, direct action, data centers, slush funds, and all the parts of an intelligence outfit, times one hundred – and ultimately run by a foreign power, and present in almost every nation, cataloging everyone.

Flynn was going to audit the Intel agencies as he came into the White House and that was one of the things they were terrified of. Plus they knew at NSA he would immediately discover their FISA abuses and the incredible widespread general surveillance abuses of the administration. I don't know whether it's from Mr. Brennan's fusion center that he set up to focus on whoever he wanted to focus on, or whether it's something called The Hammer, what it is there was a massive surveillance operation, very widespread, by the Obama administration to surveil all political opponents and anybody else they wanted to collect information on using the NSA databases, their own little research operation.

Vox also goes back to May 23rd, 2013 for this - from deep-state operative Maxine Waters:

Maxine Waters says Obama has a scary database with everything on everyone
... ... ... 

One damning allegation against the president has come from Congresswoman Maxine Waters.

Speaking on the air with Roland Martin, Waters says that President Obama’s Administration has invaded the privacy of American citizens in ways that would only be imaginable in science fiction novels.

“The President has put in place an organization with the kind of database that no one has ever seen before in life,” said Representative Waters. “That’s going to be very, very powerful,” Waters said. “That database will have information about everything on every individual on ways that it’s never been done before and whoever runs for President on the Democratic ticket has to deal with that. They’re going to go down with that database and the concerns of those people because they can’t get around it. And he’s [President Obama] been very smart. It’s very powerful what he’s leaving in place.”

Scandal-free administration? Hold my beer. Things are just getting started. 164 days until the November elections.

Hot on the "you ain't black" gaffe, here is Joe pledging to defeat himself:

You know me too well

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Out for coffee and some errands.

Working at home today - garage and music room. Heading out later in the van for a dump run and to pick up two sheets of plywood for the garage. Also getting some fresh tortillas - tacos for dinner sounds good. Planning this time to get a bunch and freeze them for later.

Back in an hour or two.

From Campus Reform:

Dem senators support resolution calling 'Chinese Virus' racist
A former Democratic presidential candidate has introduced a resolution condemning the phrase "Chinese Virus" as racist.

Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) ran unsuccessfully for president and has since endorsed presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden. Harris introduced Wednesday in the U.S. Senate a resolution, which states, "whereas the use of anti-Asian terminology and rhetoric related to COVID–19, such as the ‘'Chinese Virus,' 'Wuhan Virus,' and ‘'Kung-flu,' have perpetuated anti-Asian stigma."

And:

Two dozen other Democratic senators supported the resolution, including Sen. Mazie Hirono (Hawaii), Sen. Dick Durbin (Ill.), Sen. Amy Klobuchar (Minn.), Sen. Diane Feinstein (Calif.), Sen. Bernie Sanders (Vt), Sen. Elizabeth Warren (Mass.), and Sen. Corey Booker (N.J.). 

Citing how "the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recognize that naming COVID–19 by its geographic location or linking COVID–19 to a specific ethnicity perpetuates stigma," the resolution "calls on federal law enforcement officials, workingf with State and local officials—to expeditiously investigate and document all credible reports of hate crimes, incidents, and threats against the Asian American and Pacific Islander community in the United States."

The resolution further "condemns all manifestations or expressions of racism, xenophobia, discrimination, anti-Asian sentiment, scapegoating, and ethnic or religious intolerance."

And of course, naming a disease after its locus of origin (or a person) has never ever happened before.

And we are back at 78% - sunspots

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Our sun is being very quiet these days - last year, it tied a record last set in 1913 for fewest sunspots. Since sunspots are a good proxy for solar activity, this means that the sun's output was lower than in recent history.

2020 is continuing the trend - 2019 had 77% of its days sunspot free. Today puts 2020 at 78%. Every few weeks, we have sunspots for a day or so and that kicks the number down below 77% but it just keeps creeping up.

Why am I looking at this? Because low sun activity means low temperatures on Earth. The global warming people are going to have some 'splainin to do before too long. Looks like the Modern Warm Period is coming to a close...

And that is it for this evening

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Woke up nice and early this morning - back to normal sleep schedule. Feeling a bit tired so YouTube and then to bed.

Working at home tomorrow.

30 years later - GW-BASIC

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Microsoft open sources the code for GW-BASIC:

Microsoft Open-Sources GW-BASIC
We are excited to announce the open-sourcing of Microsoft GW-BASIC on GitHub!

Yes, seriously 😀

Why?
Since re-open-sourcing MS-DOS 1.25 & 2.0 on GitHub last year, we’ve received numerous requests to also open-source Microsoft BASIC.

Well, here we are! 😁

The Source
These sources, as clearly stated in the repo’s readme, are the 8088 assembly language sources from 10th Feb 1983, and are being open-sourced for historical reference and educational purposes. This means we will not be accepting PRs that modify the source in any way.

A little historical context
The GW-BASIC source code being published is dated Feb 10th 1983. That was quite a while ago, so just to set a little historical perspective:

The week this source was created Men At Work topped the US and UK singles charts with “Down Under”, Dustin Hoffman starred in the #1 US box-office movie, “Tootsie”. In 1983, “Star Wars Episode VI – Return of the Jedi” was released, as was “War Games”! And, Emily Blunt, Kate Mara, Jonah Hill, Chris Hemsworth, and Henry Cavill, were born! Ronald Reagan was President of the USA, and Margaret Thatcher was the UK’s Prime Minister.

That same year, Bjarne Stroustrup was in the middle of developing the first version of the C++ programming languageARPANET standardized TCP/IPBorland announced Turbo Pascal, created by Anders Hejlsberg (who went on to join Microsoft, and create J++C# and TypeScript).

1983 was also the year AT&T released UNIX System V R1, and BSD 4.2 was released, introducing the pseudoterminal for the first time (the progenitor to Windows’ ConPTY we introduced to Windows in 2018 😁)

Very cool - should be fun to look over it. Assembly language of course so some memory rebooting (mine) will be required but still - wonderful for them to do this.

Good call - going this Sunday

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Local Church - tried the Episcopal Church here and it was the same "church lite" that drove me away in the first place.

This one seems to have a backbone - the published sermons are really good.

From the Freedom Foundation:

His Handling of COVID Death Misreporting Reinforces What We Already Knew About Jay Inslee’s Character
First thing Monday morning, Freedom Foundation Labor Policy Director Max Nelsen made public the results of an investigation he’d been conducting into the methods used by the Washington State Department Health to tabulate how many of the state’s residents had been killed by the COVID-19 virus.

Turns out that, as was reported in Colorado just a few days earlier, the policy here was to pad the numbers by adding in victims who had been diagnosed with the virus but died of something else — including, as we later found out, gunshot wounds.

A few hours after the report was released, reporters at Jay Inslee’s regular Monday morning COVID update ambushed the governor with Max’s findings. Rather than admit the exaggerations and promise to fix the problem, Inslee began by saying he knew nothing of the report, then mischaracterizing what its contents, and finally labeling it “conspiracy claims from the planet Pluto.”

That night, Nelsen appeared on Fox News with Laura Ingraham, who showed video of the governor’s slanderous abdication of responsibility.

The punch line to the story: By Thursday morning, there could no longer be any denying the truth of Nelsen’s numbers, which were taken straight from the Department of Health’s own website. Consequently, Inslee did the only thing he could — he threw DOH under the bus and sent a wonk out to a hastily arranged videoconference to admit the Freedom Foundation was right all the time.

No word yet on when we can expect Inslee’s apology.

Watch Nelsen’s interview with Laura Ingraham here.

Pretty damning to the Inslee administration. He has surrounded himself with members of his own tribe. He is in a bubble and represents Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos and the like. Not you and me.

That Michigan dam collapse

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The root cause for the collapse is now pointing towards the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE) - from Michigan Live:

Failed dam owner fought with state over Wixom Lake levels before flood
Owners of a collapsed dam that caused major flooding in Michigan say they were pressured by the state to maintain elevated water levels on Wixom Lake behind it, despite concerns about the structure’s ability to handle flooding. It is an accusation a state agency spokesperson calls “misinformation.”

Boyce Hydro Power LLC owners accused Michigan regulators of being more concerned with preserving aquatic life and appeasing property owners than ensuring public safety in a statement following the catastrophic Edenville Dam collapse on Tuesday, May 19.

A bit more:

In April, Boyce and the state sued each other in state and federal court over the company’s attempts to lower Wixom Lake, an impoundment reservoir that the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE) says is home to endangered freshwater mussels that were killed by drawdowns in 2018 and 2019.

Boyce says it asked EGLE for permission to lower Wixom Lake last fall “due to concern for the safety of its operators and the downstream community.” EGLE and the Michigan Department of Natural Resources denied the request. Boyce lowered the lake without approval in mid-November “believing its safety concerns were paramount.”

Boyce sued the state on April 29 in Grand Rapids federal court, arguing the state lacks scientific validation for its endangered species concerns and should allow the drawdowns.

Fscking environmental activists. Much more at the site - typical enviro bullshit. It is a dam. It is artificial. There was a time when it was not there. To call the mussels "native" and "endangered" is just a technique to fill the rice bowls of the enviros and their government toadies.

I am not advocating trashing the environment - I used to work with the Seattle office of Greenpeace for many years but quit them when they veered away from their science roots. What is being done now is not science, it is cultural marxism masquerading as "taking care of the planet". In reality, the planet is fine.

And, of course, half-Whitmer shows her true colors - from a different article at Michigan Live:

Critical dams shouldn’t be privately owned, Gov. Whitmer says after Michigan dam break caused record flooding
Dams and other pieces of critical infrastructure shouldn’t be owned by private entities, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer said Thursday after record-breaking flooding caused by a dam break forced thousands of Michigan residents to evacuate their homes.

Yeahhhh riggghhht... Like Nationalizing the infrastructure will make things better. In your dreams. Just ask Cuba or Argentina.

Classic meme:

Stick a fork in his campaign - it is done. Wonder if they are ready to bring Hillary out for "her turn".

Hate when that happens - drove off without checking for frozen food for one order. Fortunately, the store caught it and one of the other drivers (three today) delivered them.

Fix dinner and play with the dogs.

Stand in the garage staring at things and trying to figure out where everything goes 😁

And the CDC fucks up the numbers

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They are publishing COVID-19 numbers but they are combining the active and the antibody results with no breakdown. From the Miami, Fl National Public Radio station WLRN:

CDC's National Dashboard Includes COVID-19 Data That Expert Says Mixes 'Apples To Oranges'
A nationwide analysis of COVID-19 data released this week shows broad discrepancies between what some states are reporting about testing for the novel coronavirus to the public, and what is being reported by the CDC. The analysis lists Florida as “the most extreme case” of testing discrepancies between what the state and the federal government are reporting.

Asked about the discrepancy, the CDC told WLRN that it is lumping together antibody tests along with tests for active COVID-19 infections, in an apparent conflation of its own antibody testing definitions.

“It’s apples to oranges. The two tests measure two different things,” said Mary Jo Trepka, a professor of epidemiology at Florida International University. “It’s more informative to look at the numbers of those two tests separately.”

The Poindexter that did this has an I.Q. of 30 - yes, they both relate to the same virus but they have totally different interpretations and stastical uses. Another perfect example of an unelected person with zero accountability doing a substantially less-than-perfect job. And there are some people out there who want more government involvement in our lives.

These are people for whom 1984 is a training manual and not a dystopian warning.

The WA State fraud

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Looks like this may be an underlying reason - from a comment to this site:

In case it was missed, Susan “Suzi” LeVine “was sworn in as the United States Ambassador to Switzerland and Liechtenstein on May 30, 2014 and took up her position in Bern on June 2, 2014. Reflecting her work in technology, LeVine took her oath of office while placing a hand on a Kindle containing the U.S. Constitution and, thereby, became the first U.S. official to be sworn in on an e-reader. She resigned her post in Bern on January 20, 2017. On July 9, 2018, she joined Governor Jay Inslee’s cabinet as the new Washington State Commissioner for the Employment Security Department.”

In other words, she was an Obama appointee to a plush position who bailed after Trump took office. Must have seen the writing on the Kindle.

Unelected and zero accountability and of course, she is a member of Inslee's tribe and therefore, untouchable.

Nice work if you can get it - PPP

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From the United States Attorney's Office -  Southern District of New York:

Chinese National Arrested For $20 Million Scheme To Fraudulently Obtain Loans Intended To Help Small Businesses During COVID-19 Pandemic
... ... ... announced today the arrest of MUGE MA, a/k/a “Hummer Mars,” a Chinese national residing in Manhattan, for a fraudulent scheme to obtain over $20 million in Government-guaranteed loans designed to provide relief to small businesses during the novel coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic. In connection with loan applications for relief available from the Paycheck Protection Program (“PPP”) and the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (“EIDL”) Program, MA falsely represented to the SBA and five financial institutions that his companies, New York International Capital LLC (“NYIC”) and Hurley Human Resources LLC (“Hurley”), had hundreds of employees and paid millions of dollars in wages to those employees, when, in fact, MA appears to have been the only employee of his companies. MA’s company NYIC also fraudulently represented that it was representing New York State in procuring COVID-19 test kits and personal protective equipment to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. MA was arrested this morning and will be presented later today before U.S. Magistrate Judge Kevin Nathaniel Fox.

Manhattan U.S. Attorney Geoffrey S. Berman said: “Muge Ma, a/k/a ‘Hummer Mars,’ allegedly attempted to secure over $20 million in Government-guaranteed loans intended for businesses devastated by the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic. In furtherance of the scheme, Ma allegedly falsely represented in his applications to banks and the SBA to own two companies with hundreds of employees to whom he paid millions in wages. As alleged, Ma described one of the companies as a ‘patriotic American’ firm, and said of the other company that it would ‘help the country reduce the high unemployment rate caused by the pandemic by helping unemployed American workers and unemployed American fresh graduates find jobs as quickly as possible.’ In truth, Ma appears to be the only employee of either company and had no legitimate claim to the funds for which he applied. Ma’s alleged attempts to secure funds earmarked for legitimate small businesses in dire financial straits are as audacious as they are callous, and now he now faces federal prosecution. Small businesses are facing uncertainty and unprecedented challenges, the least of which should be opportunists attempting to loot the federal funds meant to assist them. This Office, along with our law enforcement partners, will continue to vigilantly protect the integrity of those critical loan programs.”

You have to admit that he has big brass ones - takes a lot of chutzpah to try to pull off something that large and ill thought out.

My concern is that the New York State Small Business Administration is so behind the times that Ma thought that they would fall for his scam. Wonder how many other scams are being run right now  akin to the Seattle / Nigerian one that just came to light. If these scams are being run, it will be interesting to correlate their operation with the political party running the state. So far, we are two-for-two - Scam and Democrat. Any Republican states with scams of this magnitude running? Educate me.

True dat - Mike Rowe

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He should be running things, not the governors:

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Two stories - nursing homes

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Two stories from nursing homes during plague times - one heartbreaking and one encouraging. From Don Surber - the titles are links to the story:

Who Democrats kill
His name was Mike. He was 93. He was too young for World War II, but served in the post-war Philippines. Afterward, he became a college basketball star. He later worked for Mine Safety. He developed the safety helmets that are still worn by most miners. He saved lives.

Thanks to Democrat Governor Tom Wolf of Pennsylvania, Mike died last month.

And another story - taking matters into their own hands with a much better outcome:

The wise manager
My post on Mike dying in a nursing home -- "Who Democrats kill" -- triggered another tale of the Pandemic Panic, this time in an assisted living facility.

The reader said, "Your story really hit home because I think my wife and I saved my mother (crossing fingers). Mom is 94, and living in an independent senior facility near us. Up until March she was doing really well. She enjoyed her apartment, the social activities, meals and amenities provided. She particularly enjoyed Friday afternoon happy hour with live music. She did her own laundry, showered every day, made her bed, and occasionally cooked her own dinner. At least twice a week we visited and either brought dinner or took her out to a restaurant.

"Come mid-March, the lockdown started. No visitors except essential caregivers. Meals were delivered to their rooms (cold by the time they got there). The beauty salon, drugstore and all common areas were closed. No socializing, and masks were required to go get your mail. Within three weeks, she went into a massive decline. A lot of mental confusion and she mostly stopped eating. She complained constantly that she was too tired to do anything, even to take a shower. She did have a physical therapist who was visiting her twice a week. Based on the therapist reports and our conversations with her, we realized we had to do something.

Large state mismanagement in the first case - many fatalities.
Assuming personal responsibility and taking matters into their own hands - recovery.
You decide.

And out for a bit

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Coffee and then the Toyota goes in for periodic maintenence - oil change, etc...

Gray day - rain in the forecast.

Best and brightest - WA State

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Our Governor seems to have a very high opinion of his intelligence. Reality tells a different story - Dunning-Kreuger on full display. A story about some people in his administration - from The Seattle Times:

‘Hundreds of millions of dollars’ lost in Washington to unemployment fraud amid coronavirus joblessness surge
Washington state officials have acknowledged the loss of “hundreds of millions of dollars” to an international fraud scheme that hammered the state’s unemployment insurance system and could mean even longer delays for thousands of jobless workers still waiting for legitimate benefits.

Suzi LeVine, commissioner of the state Employment Security Department (ESD), disclosed the staggering losses during a news conference Thursday afternoon. LeVine declined to specify how much money was stolen during the scam, which is believed to be orchestrated from Nigeria. But she conceded that the amount was “orders of magnitude above” the $1.6 million that the ESD reported losing to fraudsters in April.

LeVine said state and law enforcement officials were working to recover as much of the money as possible, though she declined to say how much had been returned so far. She also said the ESD had taken “a number of steps” to prevent new fraudulent claims from being filed or paid but would not specify the steps, to avoid alerting criminals.

Stuff like this is drop-dead absolutely basic computer security. How they could fall for this is a perfect example of not maintaining infrastructure. I am betting that the department has PCs on every desk but they are just front ends to some legacy mainframe running a COBOL app from the 1970's - never upgraded and never maintained. It will be interesting to see the analysis in some of the computer security journals - not active any more but still read them. Lots of fun.

Let's see: We could spend $5 million and upgrade this system or we could use the money for some public art and give everybody a pay raise. Stupid bureaucrat - no donut.

A list of each man's accomplishments - not flattering - 12 more at the Fauci site, 7 more at the Gates site:

Dr. Anthony Fauci’s 15 Totally Wrong Predictions and Contradictions

  1. Dr. Fauci says he warned Trump in January that the US was in real trouble but that is not what he said publicly.
  2. Dr. Fauci warned of an apocalyptic coronavirus pandemic — then just weeks later he compared the coronavirus to a bad flu.
  3. Dr. Fauci based all of his predictions on models the that were OFF BY MILLIONS and then later told reporters,“You can’t really rely on models.”

And: The Gates Of Hell: Remove The Gatekeeper & Seal The Doors

  1. With billions in funding from the U.S., partnerships with the WHO and other UN factions, buying the media, universities, scientists and researchers, big pharma, and hundreds of NGOs, Gates rules the healthcare industry in its entirety. The WHO is only one part of the equation, and they need to be cutoff immediately as well, especially considering Gates has funded them $3.5 billion.He controls the vaccine industry through the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, GAVI, and CEPI. There have been $4.1 billion in injury and death claims against the vaccine industry, and those are just cases that have been brought forth and settled.
  2. He was raised by, and grew up with eugenicists, and that work is carried on through this day. This is an extensive timeline going back to the early 1900s that shows how eugenicists paved the way to so-called modern medicine, by changing the terminology to terms like “biotechnology” and “genetics” while continuing to carry out experimentation on human beings.
  3. Bill Gates is very involved with “Climate Change” – one of the many billion-dollar-industry hoaxes perpetrated on Americans. He created the company Breakthrough Energy in 2015, along with a group of 28 high net-worth investors from 10 countries. Much like the Giving Pledge he created with Warren Buffet in 2010, that has over 200 billionaires from 22 countries that also like to rule the world.

All of the lists come with full documentation and links to the data. These are the people that President Eisenhower warned us about in 1961.

Media bias - some basic numbers

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It is really hard to argue with facts:

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Found on the internet:

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CYA - Joe Biden

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Interesting - from FOX News:

University of Delaware turns back FOIA requests on Biden records
Following records requests from Fox News about documents related to Tara Reade's allegations against Joe Biden, the University of Delaware refused to provide any documents from its collection of Biden's senatorial papers, citing a provision in state law that purportedly exempts the school from requests not related to "public funds."

The university, which stores and owns the records, gave its response late Wednesday ahead of a looming deadline.

Of course not. Should be an interesting lawsuit and FOX certainly has the deep pockets and lawyers on retainer to press it. U of Delaware is probably just hoping to stall until November 3rd.

Good dogs...

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Some people say that dogs have no long-term memory, no anticipation and no thought for future goals. To them? BUNK!  They need to have their observational skills recalibrated with a two-by-four or baseball bat.

As I mentioned in an earlier post, Grace was bad yesterday. She chased a passing bicyclist - she did not leave the property but she ran after him. She spent the night in the garage and was sheepish yesterday and sheepish this morning. She knew she fscked up. When I came home from morning coffee and errands, I stopped by a local butcher and picked up a bag of bones. When I came home, I put it away out of sight and proceeded to work in the garage. They always go with me and they know the butcher and saw the bag.

I spent today with the two best dogs in the world. So happy, so obedient. The apex was when two bicycles went by, Grace alerted on both but did not chase. Perfect. I finished work and fixed some dinner, ate it, put food out for the pups and then, brought out the bones. I now have two very happy critters gnawing away.

Turned into a nice day - sprinkles on and off but warmed up a bit. Worked in the garage - did not get to the music room. Tomorrow.

An interesting history lesson

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Dwight D. Eisenhower was one of the smartest people to ever hold the office of President. He was a five-star General during WW-II and served as Supreme Commander of the Allied Expeditionary Force in Europe.  He spent his eight years in office (1953 through 1961) presiding over a time of American prosperity and excellence. We had just won a horrible war but, because we took the challenge to fight it, we had ramped up our industrial capacities to the point where our Nation was prosperous. Much better than the depression of the 1930's and FDR's pitiful attempts to micromanage an incremental recovery (here and here for two good starters - lots more on the web).

On January 17, 1961, he delivered his farewell address (full text here) and it has been remembered for his warnings about the Military Industrial Complex - specifically:

In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence, whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes. We should take nothing for granted. Only an alert and knowledgeable citizenry can compel the proper meshing of the huge industrial and military machinery of defense with our peaceful methods and goals, so that security and liberty may prosper together.

Very wise and very prescient. We need to remember this and dial things back a bit (except for Stark Industries - they are the good guys). K-Street - looking at you.

What people do not remember as much is this:

Yet, in holding scientific research and discovery in respect, as we should, we must also be alert to the equal and opposite danger that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientific-technological elite.

Dr's Fauci and Birx, Bill Gates, et. al. - I am looking right at you guys. You are trying to coalesce a nexus of power around your "tribe" and this is not a good thing for America or the World. You may be very smart in a few fields but you do not understand how the world operates and what true public service is. You are here to serve us, not to "guide" us or "nudge" our behavior or to advise simplistic lawmakers to lock our economy down.

You feel that you are competent in what you are doing but there is an established psychological diagnosis for this - the Dunning–Kruger effect:

In the field of psychology, the Dunning–Kruger effect is a cognitive bias in which people mistakenly assess their cognitive ability as greater than it is. It is related to the cognitive bias of illusory superiority and comes from the inability of people to recognize their lack of ability. Without the self-awareness of metacognition, people cannot objectively evaluate their competence or incompetence.

As described by social psychologists David Dunning and Justin Kruger, the cognitive bias of illusory superiority results from an internal illusion in people of low ability and from an external misperception in people of high ability; that is, "the miscalibration of the incompetent stems from an error about the self, whereas the miscalibration of the highly competent stems from an error about others."

Spot on. Disagree? Change my mind.
I like to listen to other opinions. I change mine when new facts present themselves. Do you?

Ike's speech is really well written and worth the ten minutes or so it takes to read.
Again, the full text is here:  Dwight D. Eisenhower - Farewell Address - delivered 17 January 1961

Two projects for today. Need to vacuum the house too.

Rainy and cool - going to fire up the space heater for the garage and thinking of building a fire. Probably just put on a sweater...

Watch out for that stuff

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Here is a list of warnings about Dihydrogen Monoxide - dangerous stuff.

From Stilton Jarlsberg:

20200521-dhmo.jpg

Two tweets - media bias

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The media is used to being the gatekeepers for the progressive narrative and now that this power is being taken away from them, they are fighting back as hard as they can.

From Mika Brzezinski (some wonderful punch-backs to this - scroll down and read):

And from Senator Ted Cruz:

A journalist's job is to educate us so we can make our own informed decisions. Their job is not to decide for us, to control how we think. The later is propaganda and not reporting.

Cute - local artist

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A local ceramic artist did this during the lockdown:

20200521-rabbit.jpg

Represented by this gallery: Matzke Fine Art and Design

Some amazing artists here. Good people.

And back home again

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Early lunch and then to work.

My older shepherd Grace was in a bit of hot water yesterday. She grew up on the farm and one of her jobs was to chase off any coyotes or other critters that might come and nibble on my other critters. She understands boundaries and never went beyond the fence line or chased cars or such, just critters.  She has been really good on the island, learning the property line and staying within it. A few early adventures but she has it down now.

Was outside yesterday, saw a bicycle ride past and she was off. She stopped at the property line and came back when I called her. She was dutifully sheepish but she messed up and spent the night in the garage for it. She has been very affectionate this morning so on my errand run, I stopped by my local butcher and picked up a big bag of fresh bones for her and Bear to gnaw on.

I have not given the bones out quite yet (they know very well what is in the bag) as I want to reinforce that I am the Alpha male in this household but I will hand them out after I have eaten my lunch. Should be a couple of very happy pups.

And coffee

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Heading out for a little bit. Woke up nice and early this morning - getting my sleep schedule turned around.

Working at home today - got some things I need to take care of so no trip to the farm for today. Busy day here.

Michigan dam failure

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Posted about it yesterday - The Landslide Blog has a really good writeup and some videos:

Edenville Dam failure: the astonishing video of the collapse sequence
Yesterday I posted about the remarkable and devastating failure of the Edenville Dam in Michigan on Tuesday 19 May 2020. There are now heartbreaking images online showing the damage that the resulting flood has caused downstream.  Given the known weakness of the dam, this is an unacceptable situation.

From a technical perspective, the most remarkable aspect of this failure is that the sequence of events that induced the breach is caught on video.  I tweeted about this yesterday, but it turns out that the landslide that initiated the collapse was also captured, by Lynn Coleman, and posted to Youtube by MLive.  This video is astonishing:

Talk about right place and right time. Dave then does a good analysis of the slide - frame by frame.

This is what happens when you do not maintain your infrastructure.

The two Chinas

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There is the big Communist China that builds all of our toys and then there is the Democratic Nation of Taiwan. Big China wants to annex Taiwan. Not gonna happen.

From Bloomberg:

Chinese Military Calls Pompeo’s Taiwan Message ‘Very Dangerous’
China denounced a rare message from Secretary of State Michael Pompeo to Taiwan’s president as “wrong and very dangerous,” as tensions between the two sides flared anew over U.S. overtures toward the democratically ruled island.

The Ministry of National Defense said in a statement Wednesday that the military would “take all necessary measures to firmly safeguard” China’s sovereignty, while the country’s foreign ministry separately threatened retaliation. The warnings came after Pompeo broke with past U.S. practice Tuesday and issued a statement congratulating Tsai Ing-wen ahead of her inauguration to a second term as Taiwan’s president.

From Secretary Pompeo's twitter account:

And to rub salt in the wounds - from Aljazeera:

US approves $180m sale of advanced torpedoes to Taiwan
The United States approved a $180m sale of heavyweight torpedoes to Taiwan, the State Department said on Wednesday, in a move that is likely to further strain ties between Washington and Beijing, which claims Taiwan as its own.

The US framed the sale as a mutually beneficial transaction.

That ought to get Xi riled up. And the tide is turning - from Bloomberg:

Americans Are Giving Made-in-China the Cold Shoulder
It’s not quite a new Cold War yet. Just the cold shoulder

Some 40% of Americans said they won’t buy products from China, according to a survey of 1,012 adults conducted May 12-14 by Washington-based FTI Consulting, a business advisory firm.

The poll also found:

    • 55% don’t think China can be trusted to follow through on its trade-deal commitments signed in January to buy more U.S. products
    • 78% percent said they’d be willing to pay more for products if the company that made them moved manufacturing out of China
    • 66% said they favor raising import restrictions over the pursuit of free-trade deals as a better way to boost the U.S. economy

For observers of trade policy, that last point is striking because a large majority in the U.S. have traditionally shunned protectionism. According to Gallup, almost four-fifths of Americans embrace international commerce as an opportunity rather that a threat, a number that’s steadily risen over the past decade.

Heh - act like an asshole and get shunned. Simple as that. China really messed up with COVID and it needs to pay. This is just the beginning of a long downfall and a slow rehabilitation. A painful lesson but one that is much needed.

From Gateway Pundit:

Governor Whitmer Begs Michiganders Not to Travel to their Summer Home — Then Her Cars Are Seen Parked Outside of HER SUMMER HOME!
Tyrannical Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed an executive order that banned regular Michiganders from traveling between residences in the state. Whitmer banned travel to summer homes.

Whitmer extended the ban on traveling to summer homes thru April 30th. The ban was lifted but Governor Whitmer begged Michiganders not to travel up north.

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Vehicle is registered to Marc Mallory from Lansing, Michigan - her husband. They were both at their summer home.

Two numbers - New York State

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Two numbers to look at. From the New York Post:

This nursing home disaster is on you, Gov. Cuomo
Two weeks ago, Gov. ­Andrew Cuomo was first asked about his policy that forced nursing homes to admit ­patients infected with the coronavirus.

“That’s a good question, I don’t know,” the governor answered, turning to an aide.

On Tuesday, Cuomo was asked about a report from the Associated Press that his team had added more than 1,700 deaths to the count of those who died in nursing homes, bringing the total to at least 4,813.

“I don’t know the details, frankly,” the governor answered, turning to an aide.

The second number is from Infogalactic:

Casualties of the September 11 attacks
The September 11 attacks killed 2,996 people and injured more than 6,000 others. These immediate deaths included 265 on the four planes, 2,606 in the World Trade Center and in the surrounding area, and 125 at the Pentagon. The attacks of September 11, 2001, were the deadliest terrorist act in world history and the most devastating foreign attack on American soil since the sneak attack by the Japanese on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941.

The 9/11 attack was done by radical muslim terrorists. The greater number of deaths was done by a Democrat governor. You choose.

Taking care of what you got

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A very basic thing to do. Own something? Either sell it or keep it. If you keep it, you need to take care of it and keep it in good working order. Even if you do not use it, decay sets in so periodic maintenence is part and parcel of ownership. To ignore this elemental fact is to piss your investment away and be subject to failure.

Case in point, the people's republic of Michigan - from 357 Magnum:

Edenville Dam Collapse
It was apparently not a surprise to some people that the dam was in danger. Feds revoked failed Edenville dam’s license in 2018 over inability to handle big floods.

Federal regulators in 2018 revoked the hydro-power generating license for the collapsed Edenville Dam in Midland and Gladwin counties, citing years of failure by the dam’s owners to address safety problems — especially the dam’s ability to withstand a major flood.

The Edenville Dam ruptured Tuesday after heavy rains

There is a short video, 35 seconds or so, at the link above that shows the extent of the flooding.

More at the site. Video here. Looks like Governor half-Whit was spending Michigan's money on state employee pensions, art-in-the-park festivals, free stuff for Democrat voters, etc... Anything but maintaining their infrastructure.

Quarantine is hitting everyone

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Even fine art:

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From 90 Miles - more fun stuff there

Quiet day

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Nothing much happening on the internet - working at home, did the grocery deliveries and went to the COVID testing but they were fully staffed and didn't need any more volunteers. I had already worked the other day so let some other people get some hours.

Had the last of the pork and bean soup for dinner - doing a bit more work and then another early bedtime.

People who are advocating for Socialism in America have no idea what they are talking about. We just have to look to Venezuela to see the end-game of Socialism. It has only been 22 years since Hugo Chavez took over and Venezuela has been reduced to this. From Reuters:

As lockdown hurts, desperate Venezuelans turn to cow blood soup
Since Venezuela went into its coronavirus lockdown, dozens of needy people have been lining up at a slaughterhouse in the western town of San Cristobal to pick up the only protein they can find for free: cattle blood.

Mechanic Aleyair Romero, 20, goes twice a week. He lost his job at a local garage and says boxes of subsidized food from the government of President Nicolas Maduro arrive too slowly.

“I have to find food however I can,” said Romero, holding a coffee thermos dripping with blood the slaughterhouse gives away.

Though cow’s blood is a traditional ingredient for “pichon” soup in the Venezuelan Andes and neighboring Colombia, more people have been seeking it out since the COVID-19 crisis.

In a proudly carnivorous nation, few are happy about eating more blood instead of meat - a kilo of which costs about two times the monthly minimum wage.

Venezuela used to be the bread-basket of South America. It had the highest GDP, it exported food. It was a wealthy and vibrant culture. Now? Ashes.

Santa - a fun idea

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Heh - The Matrix

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With all the kerfuffle about Red Pill / Blue Pill from the Wachowski brothers sisters, America's Newspaper of Record has an interesting story:

Wachowskis Release Cut Of 'The Matrix' Where Neo Just Takes The Blue Pill
In conjunction with Warner Bros. Studios, the Wachowskis have released a new cut of The Matrix where Neo just takes the blue pill.

The revised cut will be approximately 30 minutes long, as Neo will take the blue pill and then just go about his pretend life blissfully unaware of humanity's enslavement in the real world. Credits will roll as Neo wakes back up in his computer-generated existence and lives happily ever after.

"The red pill has been co-opted by the alt-right, and we just needed to set the record straight," said Lilly Wachowski. "Now Neo will no longer take the problematic red pill and will instead support the status quo and not cause any problems. It's much safer this way. Just think about how much happier Neo will be."

The movie ends as Morpheus tells Neo, "You take the blue pill and the story ends. You wake in your bed and you believe whatever you want to believe."

"OK," says Neo. "That sounds great."

Sometimes satire is more real than reality...

Who benefits from this

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A good point from My Pensive:

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So true - always remember to look for Cui Bono:

Cui bono, literally "to whose profit?", is a Latin phrase which is still in use as a key forensic question in legal and police investigation: finding out who has a motive for a crime. It is an adage that is used either to suggest a hidden motive or to indicate that the party responsible for something may not be who it appears at first to be.

BillG and all of his One World Order buddies stand to make a ton of money from any new and patented vaccine while safe and effective drugs like Hydroxychloroquine are just as effective, have been around for decades, are known to be safe and cost pennies to manufacture. Who is looking to profit from this pandemic?

And out for a wee bit

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Nothing catches my eye on the internet. Rainy cool day - working in the garage on the final (hopefully) floorplan and layout. Photos in a week or so.

Grocery deliveries and then working with the ham radio people as the county is doing a last round of COVID testing at the school here. Directing traffic and handing out flyers, etc...

Coffee first. Got my priorities.

Remember this - The Constitution

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Cute online quiz

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Antidepressant or Tolkien character

I did horribly - this is a lot of fun.

Dinnertime - done for the day

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Putting up some new shelves in the garage. Plan Q. Revision #48

Done enough for today - time for dinner. Left over smoked pork and bean soup. Toast up some bread and maybe do a salad (probably not).

More later (maybe not)

Heh - I want a new drug

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From America's Newspaper of Record:

'TRUMP SMASH!' Roars Giant Green President After Taking One Too Many Doses Of Hydroxychloroquine
President Trump revealed he has been taking hydroxychloroquine, but it appears he may have overdone it as he has transformed into a giant green mutant.

Trump had gone down to the science lab in the basement of the White House and demanded more hydroxychloroquine. "You've already had one hydroxychloroquine today," the inventor of the drug, Dr. Bob Hydroxychloroquine, told him. He was chained to the workstation, being forced to cook up more and more of the drug for the president.

"Yes, but what about second hydroxychloroquine?" Trump said, grabbing a beaker of a bubbling blue substance from the scientist. "I love this stuff!"

"My gosh," the horrified scientist muttered, taking off his glasses. "No mortal can handle that much!" The researcher tried to flee but was yanked back by his chains, knocking over an experimental gamma ray gun that fired straight at Trump's face.

"Power... unlimited power!" bellowed Trump as he began to grow in size, his persimmon skin turning green as his suit ripped off from his newfound giant muscles. "TRUMP ANGRY! TRUMP SMASH!"

Trump began to smash the room up as his alter ego and then ran upstairs where he destroyed much of the West Wing. He was finally calmed down and returned to normal as aides leaped onto his back and injected him with a shot of Clorox.

Title? Huey Lewis and The News

Should never have been allowed to get this bad. From NBC News:

Trump admin taps startup to build nation's first stockpile of key drug ingredients
Seeking to secure the nation's supply of critical medications, the Trump administration has signed a $354 million contract that would create the nation's first strategic stockpile of key ingredients needed to make medicines.

The agreement was signed Monday with Phlow Corp., a generic drug maker based in Virginia. According to a news release to be made public Tuesday, the project will use federal funds from the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority under the Department of Health and Human Services.

The goal is twofold: to enable the U.S. to manufacture essential drugs at risk of shortage and to create a reserve of active pharmaceutical ingredients to reduce the dependence on foreign suppliers.

Phlow's CEO, Dr. Eric Edwards, told NBC News that the company had been in discussions with the administration back in November but that the project was fast-tracked once COVID-19 hit.

Very well thought out move - not only the drugs themselves but their precursors. The chemicals needed to manufacture the drugs. We need to be independent of other nations.

Obama could have done this but noooo... The Bushs? Clinton? Same thing - could have but didn't.

The Wuhan Flu seems to bring out some really wonderful letter writing. First, the Mayor of Burlington, WA to the Governor of WA State containing this killer paragraph:

But, after watching the interview you did with Bernie Sanders on May 13th, my trust in your motives is gone. Frankly, I was appalled that the Governor of the state would in, a brief moment of unfettered honesty, express your willingness to use this “crisis to peddle a solution to climate change” that will “allow us to rebuild our economy and jump start it” in a more green manner. Your willingness to politically weaponize this terrible disease to further your climate change agenda shows a fundamental lack of leadership. True leaders do the right thing, at the right time, for the right reasons and let the political chips fall where they may.

Video of Inslee in question is here.

Yesterday, President Trump sent this four-page missive out to the incompetent head of the World Health Organization. His two closing paragraphs are spectacular:

Perhaps worse than all these failings is that we know that the World Health Organization could have done so much better. Just a few years ago, under the direction of a different Director-General, the World Health Organization showed the world how much it has to offer. In 2003, in response to the outbreak of the Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) in China, Director-General Harlem Brundtland boldly declared the World Health Organization’s first emergency travel advisory in 55 years, recommending against travel to and from the disease epicenter in southern China. She also did not hesitate to criticize China for endangering global health by attempting to cover up the outbreak through its usual playbook of arresting whistleblowers and censoring media. Many lives could have been saved had you followed Dr. Brundtland’s example.

It is clear the repeated missteps by you and your organization in responding to the pandemic have been extremely costly for the world. The only way forward for the World Health Organization is if it can actually demonstrate independence from China. My Administration has already started discussions with you on how to reform the organization. But action is needed quickly. We do not have time to waste. That is why it is my duty, as President of the United States, to inform you that, if the World Health Organization does not commit to major substantive improvements within the next 30 days, I will make my temporary freeze of United States funding to the World Health Organization permanent and reconsider our membership in the organization. I cannot allow American taxpayer dollars to continue to finance an organization that, in its present state, is so clearly not serving America’s interests.

The whole letter is well worth reading - President Trump cites chapter and verse where the WHO sided with China as well as displaying general incompetence.

A wake-up call to the organization and to the United Nations in general. The adults are in the room and they are pissed.

Nothing this morning

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Woke up earlier (7:00) but still not where I want to be (6:00 or earlier). Keep trying through this week.

Nothing on the internet catches my eye - been working at home and heading out now for coffee and a run to Bellingham.

And that is it for me

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Meeting went well - I am doing a big event in October so getting the ducks in a row for that. Online meetings are pretty good - much better in person where you get the full visual clues from people but the small screen works OK. Beats having to drive somewhere.

Had some Ahi tuna for dinner - bunch of rice and some steamed broccoli. Marinated the tuna in minced ginger, brown sugar and soy sauce and seared in a hot pan with toasted sesame oil. Mexican Coke (real cane sugar) to drink.

Signing off for the night - got some stuff to finish and looking at an early bedtime. Been getting to sleep later and later and want to reset it back to normal.

Good choice - Marco Rubio

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He is as straight as they come. From Axios:

McConnell taps Rubio as acting chairman of Senate Intelligence Committee
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) announced Monday that Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) will serve as the acting chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee while a federal investigation into Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C.) is ongoing.

The backdrop: Last week, the FBI seized Burr's phone as part of an investigation into stock trades he made shortly before the coronavirus caused global markets to crash. The next day, McConnell announced that Burr would be stepping aside from his role as chairman of the committee during the duration of the investigation.

Really good choice for the job - nobody has any dirt on him and he can not be bullied.

A good point

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Hard to be busted for treason if you are not an American Citizen:

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Started in Europe but spreading to here. A two-fer.

Washington Post:

DHS to advise telecom firms on preventing 5G cell tower attacks linked to coronavirus conspiracy theories
The Department of Homeland Security is preparing to advise the U.S. telecom industry on steps it can take to prevent attacks on 5G cell towers following a rash of incidents in Western Europe fueled by the false claim that the technology spreads the pathogen causing covid-19.

The planned industry alert comes in the wake of dozens of arson attacks on 5G towers in Britain, the Netherlands and Belgium last month apparently spurred by the conspiracy theory.

Ars Technica:

Cell-tower attacks by idiots who claim 5G spreads COVID-19 reportedly hit US
The Department of Homeland Security is reportedly issuing alerts to wireless telecom providers and law enforcement agencies about potential attacks on cell towers and telecommunications workers by 5G/coronavirus conspiracy theorists. The DHS warned that there have already been "arson and physical attacks against cell towers in several US states."

The preposterous claim that 5G can spread the coronavirus, either by suppressing the immune system or by directly transmitting the virus over radio waves, led to dozens of tower burnings in the UK and mainland Europe. Now, the DHS "is preparing to advise the US telecom industry on steps it can take to prevent attacks on 5G cell towers following a rash of incidents in Western Europe fueled by the false claim that the technology spreads the pathogen causing COVID-19," The Washington Post reported last week.

Some people... It would be very tempting to have some fun with them but I don't do stuff like that. Much.

If at first, you don't succeed

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Fling more poo at the wall. From the Washington Examiner:

Democrats tell Supreme Court they need Mueller grand jury material to consider new articles of impeachment
The Democrat-led House Judiciary Committee told the Supreme Court it needs the grand jury materials redacted in special counsel Robert Mueller’s report to decide whether to impeach Trump over his alleged obstruction of the Russia investigation.

Douglas Letter, the Democratic committee's top lawyer, filed a 33-page motion on Monday opposing a Justice Department effort that seeks to have the nation's highest court block the release of the documents. Democrats insist they need the information quickly because the House Judiciary Committee’s “impeachment investigation related to obstruction of justice pertaining to the Russia investigation is ongoing.”

“The Mueller Report grand-jury material remains central to the Committee’s ongoing inquiry into the President’s conduct,” the Democrats wrote. “If this material reveals new evidence supporting the conclusion that President Trump committed impeachable offenses that are not covered by the Articles adopted by the House, the Committee will proceed accordingly — including, if necessary, by considering whether to recommend new articles of impeachment.”

These morons are flogging a dead horse. There is nothing there. Consider for a moment who would have more interest in "working" with Russia. Hillary has already shown great favoritism (Uranium One deal and Bill's half-million speaking fee in Moscow). President Trump has been America First all the way - no favoritism towards Russia at all.

The deep-state liberals backs are against the wall - they have nothing so they are grasping at straws.

Progress

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Got back from the grocery deliveries today (only two clients). Saw that the grocery store has now stocked their bulk-foods section. Progress in re-opening is being made.

Working on some stuff for tonight's meeting...

Academia - a quote

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I should start a collection - this is number three:

There are two ways of forming an opinion. One is the scientific method; the other, the scholastic. To the scientific mind, experimental proof is all-important, and theory is merely a convenience in description, to be junked when it no longer fits. To the academic mind, authority is everything, and facts are junked when they do not fit theory.
--Robert A. Heinlein

The other two I love are as follows:

"For real people, if something works in theory, but not in practice, it doesn't work. For academics, if something works in practice, but not in theory, it doesn't exist."
--Nassim Nicholas Taleb

A corollary to what Vox Day said:

In academia there is no difference between academia and the real world; in the real world there is.

So true - all of them.

And 60 years ago

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Missed the anniversary - May 16, 1960 - Ted Maiman

Ted Maiman? Fired the first LASER - from Charles H. Townes writing at University of Chicago:

Theodore Maiman made the first laser operate on 16 May 1960 at the Hughes Research Laboratory in California, by shining a high-power flash lamp on a ruby rod with silver-coated surfaces. He promptly submitted a short report of the work to the journal Physical Review Letters, but the editors turned it down. Some have thought this was because the Physical Review had announced that it was receiving too many papers on masers—the longer-wavelength predecessors of the laser—and had announced that any further papers would be turned down. But Simon Pasternack, who was an editor of Physical Review Letters at the time, has said that he turned down this historic paper because Maiman had just published, in June 1960, an article on the excitation of ruby with light, with an examination of the relaxation times between quantum states, and that the new work seemed to be simply more of the same. Pasternack's reaction perhaps reflects the limited understanding at the time of the nature of lasers and their significance. Eager to get his work quickly into publication, Maiman then turned to Nature, usually even more selective than Physical Review Letters, where the paper was better received and published on 6 August.

With official publication of Maiman's first laser under way, the Hughes Research Laboratory made the first public announcement to the news media on 7 July 1960. This created quite a stir, with front-page newspaper discussions of possible death rays, but also some skepticism among scientists, who were not yet able to see the careful and logically complete Nature paper. Another source of doubt came from the fact that Maiman did not report having seen a bright beam of light, which was the expected characteristic of a laser. I myself asked several of the Hughes group whether they had seen a bright beam, which surprisingly they had not. Maiman's experiment was not set up to allow a simple beam to come out of it, but he analyzed the spectrum of light emitted and found a marked narrowing of the range of frequencies that it contained. This was just what had been predicted by the theoretical paper on optical masers (or lasers) by Art Schawlow and myself, and had been seen in the masers that produced the longer-wavelength microwave radiation. This evidence, presented in figure 2 of Maiman's Nature paper, was definite proof of laser action. Shortly afterward, both in Maiman's laboratory at Hughes and in Schawlow's at Bell Laboratories in New Jersey, bright red spots from ruby laser beams hitting the laboratory wall were seen and admired.

Now, we use them for cat toys.

How time flies - Mt. St. Helens

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40 years ago today. From InfoGalactic:

1980 eruption of Mount St. Helens
On May 18, 1980, a major volcanic eruption occurred at Mount St. Helens, a volcano located in the state of Washington, United States. The eruption (a VEI 5 event) was the only significant one to occur in the contiguous 48 U.S. states since the 1915 eruption of Lassen Peak in California. The eruption was preceded by a two-month series of earthquakes and steam-venting episodes, caused by an injection of magma at shallow depth below the volcano that created a huge bulge and a fracture system on the mountain's north slope.

An earthquake at 8:32:17 a.m. PDT (UTC−7) on Sunday, May 18, 1980, caused the entire weakened north face to slide away, creating the largest landslide ever recorded. This suddenly exposed the partly molten, gas- and steam-rich rock in the volcano to lower pressures. The rock responded by exploding a hot mix of lava and pulverized older rock toward Spirit Lake so fast that it overtook the avalanching north face.

An eruption column rose 80,000 feet (24 km; 15 mi) into the atmosphere and deposited ash in 11 U.S. states. At the same time, snow, ice and several entire glaciers on the volcano melted, forming a series of large lahars (volcanic mudslides) that reached as far as the Columbia River, nearly 50 miles (80 km) to the southwest. Less severe outbursts continued into the next day, only to be followed by other large, but not as destructive, eruptions later that year.

Approximately fifty-seven people were killed directly, including innkeeper Harry R. Truman, photographer Reid Blackburn and geologist David A. Johnston. Hundreds of square miles were reduced to wasteland, causing over a billion U.S. dollars in damage ($2.89 billion in 2015 dollars), thousands of game animals were killed, and Mount St. Helens was left with a crater on its north side. At the time of the eruption, the summit of the volcano was owned by the Burlington Northern Railroad, but afterward the land passed to the United States Forest Service. The area was later preserved, as it was, in the Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument.

Remember it quite well. The power of nature is beyond our comprehension.

Working from home - now, the BBC

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Working from home and having to teleconference? Some backgrounds for your video feed.

First, Studio Ghibli released some of theirs, then Star Wars. Now, the Beeb:

The joy of sets
Give your video calls a makeover, with this selection of over 100 empty sets from the BBC Archive.

Who hasn't wanted to host a pub quiz from the Queen Vic, conduct a job interview from the confines of Fletch's cell, or catch up with friends and family from the bridge of the Liberator in Blake's 7?

Click on an image to bring up a full quality downloadable version, right click and select "Save image as...", then set it as your background image in your video conferencing application.

Here is the lab for Professor Bernard Quatermass from the series (and later Hammer Film) Quatermass and the Pit

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The series is also notable in that it was the first time electronic music had been used in a science-fiction television production.

Pills - red and blue

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Heh - looks like one of the people who invented the concept of Red Pill v/s Blue Pill is firmly in the blue pill camp and has quite the vocabulary on social media. From The Guardian:

Lilly Wachowski rounds on Ivanka Trump and Elon Musk over Matrix tweets
Film-maker Lilly Wachowski has responded to Elon Musk and Ivanka Trump after the pair bantered on social media using a phrase from the Wachowskis’ hit 1999 film, The Matrix.

After Musk tweeted “Take the red pill” – referring to a key scene in The Matrix, which subsequently gave rise to the phrase “redpilling” as an alt-right, misogynist meme, along with a red rose emoji normally associated with the Democratic Socialists of America, the party to which Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Rashida Tlaib belong – Trump replied: “Taken!”

Wachowski then pithily responded, “Fuck both of you”, before following up with a tweet supporting the Brave Space Alliance, which describes itself as “the first Black and trans led LGBTQIA center located on the South Side of Chicago”.

First of all, The Guardian proudly wears its liberal bias on its sleeve. The difference between Red Pill and Blue Pill has absolutely nothing to do with right or left and has absolutely nothing to do with misogyny (or misandry). To quote the dialog from the film:

You take the blue pill – the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill – you stay in Wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit hole goes.

Red pill and blue pill is about awareness and truth - the actual truth and not the narrative. People who take the red pill see what is actually happening and "wake up" from living in the state of narrative. This is what makes the liberals react so violently. Their problem is that if they actually said this, they would be admiting that their philosophy is based on a made-up story and their beautiful prison would crumble under its own weight. Therefore, they have to fling poo and try to distract people from the truth. Cognitive dissonance writ large.

Tweet in question - a screen cap as I could not find the original.

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Class act Lilly. Great technique to sway people to your way of thinking.

The siblings make great movies. They just need to stay away from social media.
The "Dance monkey, dance" rant comes to mind.

A latte with my name on it

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Heading out for a bit. Working at home today - board meeting tonight (via Zoom).

Dump run, laundry and some computer work.

Nice morning - great sunrise. Rain coming in later this week but next two days look good.

The narrative changes like the weather - it is always shifted to cover the current talking points:

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Pigeon problem

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If you feed them, they will come - from Sultan Knish:

San Francisco Besieged by Homeless Demanding Free Hotel Rooms, Pot, and Booze
People are showing up in San Francisco from other places and asking where their hotel room is,” Mayor Breed complained.

“People are coming from all over the place, Sacramento, Lake County, Bakersfield,” Jeanine Nicholson, the first lesbian head of the San Francisco Fire Department, grumbled. “People are getting released from jail in other counties and being told to go to San Francisco, where you will get a tent and then you will get housing.”

SF has developed a reputation of being easy on bums. This is what they get for it. A bit more:

San Francisco was spending $200 a night to house the homeless, or as the current politically correct euphemism insisted that they be called, the ‘unhoused’, in hotel rooms at a cost of over $100 million.

The hotel rooms were Plan B after an attempt to house the homeless (or the unhoused) in the Palace of Fine Arts. The degradation of the former imitation Roman bath built for the 1915 Exposition would have been a fitting symbol for the new San Francisco, but homeless advocates thought it wasn’t good enough.

Hotels weren’t exactly enthusiastic about having paranoid schizophrenics urinating in their lobbies. Also, under San Francisco law, staying there for 30 days might give the homeless tenancy rights.

And then good luck evicting them.

We need a nice big earthquake - let the whole place slide into the Pacific. Much more at the site - it has really turned into a shithole city. Pity as it was a beautiful place - traveled through there several times many years ago.

Been eatling a lot of beans but doing well:

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Pelosi power grab

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Not surprised - everyone is focused on the eye-bleed spending in the 1,300 page bill. Arizona Congressman Andy Biggs looks at another aspect - from The Daily Caller:

Nancy Pelosi’s Coronavirus Bill Has Allowed Her To Seize More Power
Say goodbye to representative government. Nancy Pelosi distracted the entire country from her efforts to emasculate the House of Representatives by introducing legislation that devastates our economy by taking on more than $3 trillion in national debt.

Speaker Pelosi proffered a rule change that further arrogates power to her at the same time the House was considering the bankruptcy-inducing HEROES Act.

While the media and many members have focused on the shiny object of incalculable spending, Democrats approved a rule change that prevents members from debating or even asking questions about any legislation. All the power in the United House of Representatives now rests totally in the Speaker.

Additionally, Pelosi is moving the representation goalpost by allowing each member to cast votes for up to ten other members who don’t bother to show up. So instead of a majority of 218 members to constitute a quorum and 218 votes to prevail, only 22 members with proxies are necessary to show up. It will be up to non-elected employees of the House — the Sergeant at Arms and House Physician — to determine whether U.S. representatives come to work.

America just got a Mad Queen. She needs to be removed from office.

Hurricane season has started - Tropical Storm Arthur:

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From The Daily Caller:

Sen. Kennedy: Republicans Tried To See Coronavirus Relief Pelosi’s Way, ‘But We Can’t Get Our Heads That Far Up Our Rear Ends’
Republican Louisiana Sen. John Kennedy called the House Democrats’ latest attempt at coronavirus relief “dead as fried chicken.”

Kennedy explained his reasoning during a conversation with Maria Bartiromo on “Sunday Morning Futures.”

Senator Kennedy's words:

“Well it’s not a coronavirus bill as much as it is an effort by the Speaker and her colleagues to rewrite the rules for American society. This bill, her bill would rewrite our immigration laws, her bill would federalize elections, our elections have always been run by states and local governments. Her bill would begin the process of federalizing the elections,” Kennedy explained.

“It mentions dope more than it talks about jobs. I think it references cannabis like 68 times. It would expand Obamacare and let me end as I began,” Kennedy concluded. “It would cost $3 trillion. That’s 3,000 billion. We just spent $3 trillion, we need to see how that works first.”

Absolutely. Pelosi is power-mad. She does not represent her constituents. She needs to stick to her ice cream and let us live our lives without her meddling.

Sobering story from the New York Post:

Bruce Springsteen guitarist Nils Lofgren sues New Jersey nursing home
The mother-in-law of the guitarist for Bruce Springsteen’s E Street Band, contracted the coronavirus at an upscale nursing home in Morris County, New Jersey, according to a lawsuit filed last week.

Rocker Nils Lofgren and his wife Amy moved her mother, Patricia J. Landers, into Brookdale Senior Living in Florham Park where the home had promised the family 24-hour security and a staff trained to deal with residents who have dementia.

Landers, 83, “left unattended escaped” the facility in the middle of the night for hours on April 8, says the lawsuit, and was eventually located by police officers — three miles away, bruised and confused.

After she returned to the facility, the family was told she tested negative for the coronavirus.

A week later, Landers was admitted to a hospital in Montclair, where she tested positive for COVID-19 and was suffering from pneumonia.

Landers is now recovering and has been transferred to another facility.

Rope. Tree. Some assembly required. This level of negligence is unconcionable.

The joys of New York City

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Democrats are so wonderful - they really take care of the poor and disadvantaged. From the New York Post:

Nurses give inside look at ‘nightmare’ NYC-run adult-care center
Out-of-state nurses brought to Manhattan to fight the coronavirus say they found hellish conditions at the city-run adult-care center on Roosevelt Island — from patients with horrific bed sores to feces-smeared walls.

“It was just heartbreaking,” said one of the RNs, a mom of four from Wisconsin who spent about 17 days at the Coler Rehabilitation and Nursing Care Center.

“Patients were in deplorable conditions — very, very dirty, bed sores, terrible odors,’’ the FEMA-contracted nurse, 38, told The Post.

“During my shift, I was placing my initials on the adult diapers. When I would return the next day, the patients would have an additional adult diaper on over the one with my initials on it, saturated urine through both and through the sheets.’’

A bit more:

One of the FEMA-contracted nurses, who is from Iowa, described feces-smeared and vermin- and roach-infested areas at the facility — and said she even found cockroaches “on a patient in a vegetative state.

“The conditions at Coler went beyond poor nursing care and crossed clearly into criminal negligence and dependent-adult abuse,’’ the RN told The Post.

The 34-year-old mom said there were “food and feces smeared on patients’ beds, walls, tray tables and curtains,’’ while “basic nursing cares [were] not met, including [patient] turns, diaper changes.’’

And this:

“Patients were flinching when doing basic cares, putting their arms up in self-defense due to they were in fear of being hit,” she claimed.

Meanwhile, the “ ‘clean’ med room was infested with mice, and ‘clean’ supplies, medication and food were contaminated with mice feces and urine,” the Iowa nurse added.

And one more - HHC is New York City’s Health + Hospital Corp.:

But HHC denied the nurses’ claims to The Post, saying the facility was last inspected by the state Department of Health in November and “found to be in substantial compliance with federal and state regulations.

“NYC Health + Hospitals provides the highest quality care to our patients, ensuring their health and safety always comes first,’’ it added in a statement.

“Any claims of neglect and abuse are simply false, highly disturbing and do not reflect our standards of care.”

Of course, the CEO of that facility is a lawyer, not an MD or an administrator. Probably planning an epic session of CYA.

Life in the workers paradise.

Gears

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Wonderful video:

Dinnertime - soup day two

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Smoked pork with 15 bean mix. Was delicious yesterday. Looking forward to more today.

Picked up a loaf of whole-grain bread at the coop this morning - was going to have some yesterday but mine was moldy. Fresh loaf today - toast with Kerry Gold butter. A meal in itself.

The day turned sunny so eating outside by the water.

Stop the recycling nonsense - from the New York Post:

The smart way for post-coronavirus pandemic NYC to save money: Stop recycling
The financial pressure of the coronavirus pandemic has led Mayor de Blasio to do what he’s never done before: propose reductions in New York City’s sprawling $93 billion budget. A good place to start would be the city’s recycling collection program. That may seem like eco-sacrilege but in extraordinary times nothing should be sacrosanct. For recycling, the numbers don’t add up.

By sending recyclables to safe landfills — and avoiding the cost of separate collection — the city could save nearly $200 million. At a time when COVID-19 puts frontline workers, including the city’s 7,000 uniformed Sanitation workers (New York’s fabled “Strongest”), at risk and may make staffing more difficult, simplifying garbage collection makes sense — and would save taxpayer dollars.

Conceived originally as a way to save money by selling paper, glass and metal instead of paying to bury it in landfills, recycling in New York — and nationwide — has become a money-loser and a drain on the city’s budget. Nor is there even a guarantee that recyclables will not ultimately go to a landfill anyway.

In a forthcoming paper for the Manhattan Institute, I find that the elimination of recycling — by combining what’s now put out in blue bins with general refuse — would save the city approximately $185 million annually. These are funds that could help restore the youth jobs program and, were they directed to parks, help provide a direct environmental benefit for outdoors-starved New Yorkers.

Penn and Teller has an excellent video in their Bullshit series:

On December 3rd, I wrote about the Cannonball Express record of driving from New York City to Los Angeles being shattered with the drive being done in 27 hours and 25 minutes. It seems that during the lockdown, people have been busy - it is now down to 26 hours and 38 minutes with other Cannonball variants being broken as well (round trip, etc...) From Australia's Which Car:

America’s most illegal record has been obliterated
All the pearl-clutching about the morality of performing a Cannonball Run during a global pandemic seems to have been for nothing, with Ed Bolian reporting America’s most illegal record has been beaten seven times in the span of just five weeks.

According to Bolian, who has been in contact with the new record holders, the time to beat is now less than 26 hours. A sub 28-hour Cannonball Run was once unthinkable.

While he has not disclosed the exact time, that frame of reference means the drivers would have had to achieve an average speed of at least 173km/h for the 4507km journey.

A bit more:

According to Bolian, its not just the outright record that has been broken, with the solo-driver, diesel-powered, and coast-to-coast-to-coast Cannonball records all tumbling – the last of which having almost 20 hours shaved off the previous record time.

This new flurry of record attempts follows a team of drivers who took advantage of empty roads that had been created by the coronavirus lockdown to set a cross-country time of 26 hours and 38 minutes.

Heh - I'll be posting more as I find out about it. Sounds like a lot of fun and a great way to make use of the empty roads.

Bet'cha Governor Cuomo didn't think about this when the opportunity to crash the system presented itself.
From Bloomberg:

N.Y. Tax Revenue Plummeted 68% in April, State Comptroller Says
New York state’s tax revenue plummeted 68.4% in April, as the coronavirus lockdowns and the extension of tax return filings to July 15 took a toll on state coffers.

The Empire State collected $3.7 billion, or $7.9 billion less than the previous April. Personal income-tax revenue fell more than $7 billion from last April, a drop that was primarily due to the delayed tax filing deadline.

“New York is facing economic devastation not seen since the Great Depression,” New York Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said in a news release. “New York and other hard-hit states need the federal government to step up and provide assistance, or the state will have to take draconian actions to balance its budget.”

And they will be expecting the rest of us US Taxpayers to bail them out. Why don't they do what everyone else does - set a budget and live by it. Maybe a draconian haircut would be a good thing - a teachable moment for them.

I knew that prisoners were being released so they could vote Democrat in the November elections escape the ravages of the COVID-19 Chinese virus but this number is really shocking. From BigLeague Politics

One Third Of Jail Inmates Nationwide Set Free in Unprecedented Coronavirus Jailbreak
A new study reveals that almost a third of county jail inmates have been set free from the facilities during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Prison Policy Initiative study has determined that 32% of inmates at county jails have been set free.

In the last two months, local governments across the U.S. have drastically reduced their jail populations to slow the spread of the coronavirus. The typical jail has reduced its population by more than 30%.”

Many jails have released up to half of their inmates, with facilities in Oregon, Arkansas and New Jersey releasing between 57% and 63% of their jail inmates.

What is interesting is that the Prison Policy Initiative is at heart, a prisoner's rights website and for them to publish numbers like this shows that they really have a lot of people being released. The report is here: While jails drastically cut populations, state prisons have released almost no one and is focused on the fact that State Prisons have not released many prisoners (about 5%) while the local and county jails have flung open their doors. Kudos to the State wardens for maintaining cooler heads than their municipal and county brethren.

And out for a bit - errands

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Woke up around 6AM as is usual but rolled over for another four hours. Feeling fine, just needed the extra Zzzz's.

Working on some computer stuff here but time for coffee and a run to the food coop for some staples.

Forecast is for gray and overcast for the next couple days - I can live with that. It was raining quite hard this morning when I first woke up. Felt and sounded delicious - probably why I want right back to sleep.

Nothing much happening in the real world - more later. Couple of fun projects and one strange one - more on that when I get a reply from the company (service call).

Our friends in China

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China is not operating in our interests. From The Daily Caller:

Chinese Official Confirms That China Ordered Labs To Destroy Coronavirus Samples
A senior Chinese government official confirmed Friday that authorities ordered laboratories to destroy samples of coronavirus in early January.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had accused Chinese officials of ordering the samples’ destruction as part of the regime’s cover-up of the coronavirus outbreak in its early stages.

Pompeo said on April 22 that China “censored those who tried to warn the world, it ordered a halt to testing of new samples, and it destroyed existing samples.” He offered more specificity on May 6, stating that China’s National Health Commission [NHC] ordered virus samples destroyed on Jan. 3.

NHC official Liu Dengfeng conceded at a briefing on Friday that the agency had ordered the labs to destroy the samples, but said that the order was given for safety reasons.

They need to pay and pay big-time. Their cause, their cure.

Nice use of the words: "sanctuary city" - from disrn:

Atwater, CA declares itself "sanctuary city" from lockdown, allows businesses to open
In defiance of Gov. Gavin Newsom's statewide lockdown orders, the city council of Atwater, California unanimously passed a resolution Friday declaring the city of 30,000 a "sanctuary city" in which businesses and churches will be allowed to open.

As a result of the resolution, businesses and houses of worship will be allowed to open and operate free from interference from local authorities.

Atwater Mayor Paul Creighton said:

"This is America. You have the choice. It's time for the government to stop dictating another month, another three months, six months. When is it going to end? When everyone is bankrupt?"

Good move - punching back twice as hard. Remember this paragraph from the Mayor of Burlington's letter yesterday:

But, after watching the interview you did with Bernie Sanders on May 13th, my trust in your motives is gone. Frankly, I was appalled that the Governor of the state would in, a brief moment of unfettered honesty, express your willingness to use this “crisis to peddle a solution to climate change” that will “allow us to rebuild our economy and jump start it” in a more green manner. Your willingness to politically weaponize this terrible disease to further your climate change agenda shows a fundamental lack of leadership. True leaders do the right thing, at the right time, for the right reasons and let the political chips fall where they may.

The politicians are using this crisis to advance their agendas and they are not working for us to serve us and to protect us. The lockdown is political and not a matter of public health.

I cannot find a direct link but this sounds authentic - from a local list. Burlington is a smallish city North of me about halfway from the island to Bellingham. Lots of malls and businesses - my favorite steel place is there, so are a couple of other vendors (welding supply, Costco, Harbor Freight, etc...) Their Mayor wrote this letter to the WA State Governor Jay Inslee:

Mayor of Burlington letter to Inslee
May 15, 2020
Governor Jay Inslee
P.O. Box 40002
Olympia, WA 98504-0002

Governor Inslee:
As the Mayor of the City of Burlington, I have supported your Stay home…Stay safe order from the beginning. As difficult as it has been, it was in the beginning a necessary move. I had trust in your reasons for implementing the order.

But, after watching the interview you did with Bernie Sanders on May 13th, my trust in your motives is gone. Frankly, I was appalled that the Governor of the state would in, a brief moment of unfettered honesty, express your willingness to use this “crisis to peddle a solution to climate change” that will “allow us to rebuild our economy and jump start it” in a more green manner. Your willingness to politically weaponize this terrible disease to further your climate change agenda shows a fundamental lack of leadership. True leaders do the right thing, at the right time, for the right reasons and let the political chips fall where they may.

The citizens of Washington deserve as much….our businesses deserve as much…and the elected leaders that have supported you thus far also deserve as much. You have just called into question every decision you have made during this pandemic up to this point, and future decisions as our economy clings to life. The ability to “rebuild our economy” would require tearing it down first. Many will now question if that is, at this point, your true motive?

I am often asked by business owners, “Why can I not open”, and I am many times at a loss for an explanation. You sir, just provided the answer for the next time I am asked that.

As the Mayor of a Washington State city that is heavily dependent upon sales tax (#1 per capita in the state), facing the sharp reduction in these revenues, I am fighting to keep our city solvent. Your interview suggests that your agenda and mine diverge at this point.

So while you use your power to further your climate change agenda, using this pandemic as a tool to do so…I will use my powers apolitically to do what is right by the citizens and businesses in Burlington. That is what our shared constituents deserve.

I am always available for discussion,
Steve Sexton

Mayor
City of Burlington

The interview in question can be viewed at this twitter

Inslee is innumerate and out of touch. He is the Governor for Microsoft and Amazon.
His daughter-in-law is an employee of the Gates Foundation.

That's one way to say it

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About sums up my feelings for the two of them:

20200516-coffee.jpg

Both are well past their Sell By: dates.

Great day for soup

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Ran a couple of errands - picked up a miter saw stand for use on my Evolution metal cutting saw. Been hauling it out and setting it up on sawhorses whenever I want to use it but that is always ungainly. This way, it tilts up and rolls into the corner when I am not using it - sets up in less than a minute.

Also picked up a pound of smoked pork - the local grocery store brings in a smoker every weekend and does their own. Fixing some 15-bean soup with ham for dinner tonight - cold and rainy day so perfect. Making enough for several meals - next couple of days are forecast for the same.

Got the stand assembled and saw mounted - working on a couple of other projects today. Surf for a bit and then back to work.

You are not the apex predator in this neighborhood:

20200516-apex.jpg

Tip of the hat to Daily Timewaster which is anything but. (guessing a small grizz or large brown)

Right there in the center

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Found on the internet - sums it up perfectly:

20200516-covid.jpg

As things get interesting

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Observations from Naval Ravikant from January 18th, 2016:

American Spring
A one party system ran the United States, and the United States ran the world.

The US had checks and balances — governing required consensus, and the people were freed from kings. To protect speech, the framers left out a rule against conspiracies to monopolize the vote.

Political parties formed to monopolize the vote. The losing parties kept ganging up until only two parties remained. Resembling vast and immortal corporations, they consolidated all political power.

The parties need mass media to win elections. Media literally intermediates reality and programs voters by framing the acceptable parameters of any debate. Mass media costs mass money.

The elites, a plutocracy of the top few percent, bought the parties. So cheaply in fact, that they bought both.

The elites are merely people that went to the right schools, grew up in the right neighborhoods, and came from the right money and the right families. It’s not a formal conspiracy — rather an intricate and distributed system, organized by the invisible hand of the market, voting with dollars and newspaper ink, and controlling the country all the same.

Within some parameters, the elites argue — bombs from the air or boots on the ground? How much should we tax income?

Mostly the elites agree to keep power with elite institutions, controlling the masses who cannot be trusted. Yes to wars, yes to mass surveillance, yes to bailouts, yes to war on drugs, yes to war on terror, yes to endless copyrights, yes to monopolies and oligopolies, no to term limits, no to wealth taxes… On these and others, pick R or D, there are no choices.

The Elite Party runs the system and it basically works. The elite stay elite. Income may be taxed, but wealth compounds. The most belligerent and implacable of the masses are sent to fight in mercifully distant wars. Crime happens in other people’s neighborhoods. The prisons are full and everyone is being watched. The pie expands, slowly and un-evenly, and all is well.

One weakness — the presidency is a single office of great visibility and power, directly and democratically elected. One person, one vote. Regardless of education, ethic, breeding, knowledge, achievement. Is everyone actually, really, equally qualified to vote, the elites wonder?

The elites lock the crown behind two massive gates — it costs a billion dollars to run for president. And incalculable, favorable mass media exposure.

This works well — so well that the elites get lazy, handing off presidential power within dynasties — between fathers and sons, husbands and wives.

Statistically speaking, what are the odds that the two most qualified candidates to be president out of 300 million people are siblings? Or married?

Barack Obama interrupts an in-process coronation. Using hope, change, and emerging alternative online media, he organizes and brings new voters to the polls. But back then, it still takes television, money, newspapers, and the party apparatus. He can’t and doesn’t do it alone, and eventually joins the elite.

Today, it’s a different world. YouTube, Twitter, and Facebook let one human broadcast to billions, without permission, without censors, without delay. Social media makes mass organization and resistance possible.

Much more at the site - a longish observation but Naval really cuts to the heart of things. Interesting times indeed...

Actually, not. From Robert Stacy McCain:

Remember How Everybody Was Going to Die Because Georgia Ended Lockdowns?
The headlines last month were scary:

Georgia’s dangerous coronavirus experiment
— Joel Mathis, The Week April 21
Georgia’s Kemp neglected to warn people about his dangerous gamble
— Steve Benen, MSNBC, April 22
Kemp poised to lift restrictions, despite warnings of renewed outbreak
— Alan Judd and Greg Bluestein, Atlanta Journal-Constitution, April 29

It was a “gamble,” an “experiment,” and the media all agreed it was “dangerous” for Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp to do this “despite warnings.” You would have thought, based on the coverage, that Kemp’s plan was so reckless and irresponsible as to guarantee a “renewed outbreak” that would kill thousands. But what actually happened?

Georgia’s daily COVID-19 deaths had already peaked by the time Kemp announced he would begin re-opening the state’s economy. On April 16, Georgia recorded 52 deaths from the virus, concluding a week (April 10-16) in which the state recorded 205 deaths, an average of 35.7 deaths daily for that week. For the seven day period ending Thursday (i.e., May 8-14), Georgia recorded a total of 105 coronavirus deaths, an average of 15 daily. In other words, comparing these two seven-day periods, there was a 58% decrease in Georgia’s COVID-19 deaths. The number of daily new COVID-19 cases reported has likewise declined more than 50% since April, even as the number of tests performed has increased.

More at the site - those pesky numbers again. Robert reminds us of Farr's Law which governs outbreaks like this - basically a bell curve. We may be able to change the slope or height of the bell curve but nothing we can do will change the fact that it will be a bell curve. Has always been and will always be.

From  Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company:

TSMC Announces Intention to Build and Operate an Advanced Semiconductor Fab in the United States
Hsinchu, Taiwan, R.O.C., May 15, 2020 – TSMC (TWSE: 2330, NYSE: TSM) today announced its intention to build and operate an advanced semiconductor fab in the United States with the mutual understanding and commitment to support from the U.S. federal government and the State of Arizona.

This facility, which will be built in Arizona, will utilize TSMC’s 5-nanometer technology for semiconductor wafer fabrication, have a 20,000 semiconductor wafer per month capacity, create over 1,600 high-tech professional jobs directly, and thousands of indirect jobs in the semiconductor ecosystem. Construction is planned to start in 2021 with production targeted to begin in 2024. TSMC’s total spending on this project, including capital expenditure, will be approximately US$12 billion from 2021 to 2029. This U.S. facility not only enables us to better support our customers and partners, it also gives us more opportunities to attract global talents. This project is of critical, strategic importance to a vibrant and competitive U.S. semiconductor ecosystem that enables leading U.S. companies to fabricate their cutting-edge semiconductor products within the United States and benefit from the proximity of a world-class semiconductor foundry and ecosystem.

TSMC welcomes continued strong partnership with the U.S. administration and the State of Arizona on this project. This project will require significant capital and technology investments from TSMC. The strong investment climate in the United States, and its talented workforce make this and future investments in the U.S. attractive to TSMC. U.S. adoption of forward-looking investment policies to enable a globally competitive environment for a leading edge semiconductor technology operation in the U.S. will be crucial to the success of this project. It will also give us the confidence this and other future investments by TSMC and its supply chain companies will be successful.

In the United States, TSMC currently operates a fab in Camas, Washington and design centers in both Austin, Texas and San Jose, California. The Arizona facility would be TSMC’s second manufacturing site in the United States.

TSMC is an interesting company in that they do not "brand" their own products. They are what is called a semiconductor foundry - they will design and fabricate custom semis for other manufacturers who need a specific product but do not have the volume to warrant setting up their own Fab Line.

Good news that they are investing in America - they employ 51,000 people worldwide. Some really good jobs.

And lights out (metaphorically)

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Done for the day. Another gorgeous sunset - nice light on Mt. Baker and the Olympics. Supposed to have rain tomorrow but we will see. Doing some computer work and maybe work outside if it is dry.

The COVID testing was fun - I was not needed this afternoon so hung out for an hour and then bailed. The county is doing even more testing next week so I will be busy Wednesday.

Went out for fish and chips at a local burger joint. Having a beer or three sounds good - nice close to the day. Watch some videos.

FAKE NEWS IS NOT ESSENTIAL

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Quite the bit of video - the camera operator got an ear/eyeful. From President Trump's twitter account - he was in Pennsylvania:

Almost (almost) feel sorry for the poor guy - wonder what the station was. Visit the site to read the comments. One of them had this wonderful screen-cap from CNN - don't know if the innumeracy was planned or just a gaffe that slipped through but sheesh... Why do ALL of their mistakes ALWAYS follow the liberal narrative. If these were honest mistakes, they would have a statistical distribution.

20200515-CNN.jpg

The gloves are coming off - China

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From the Communist Chinese government house organ Global Times:

China targets GOP hawks, US firms, states over lawsuits
China is extremely dissatisfied with the abuse of litigation by the US against China over the COVID-19 epidemic, and is considering punitive countermeasures against US individuals, entities and state officials, such as Missouri's attorney general Eric Schmitt, who filed a lawsuit against China, seeking compensation for the coronavirus pandemic, sources close to the matter told the Global Times exclusively. At least four US Congress members, including Josh Hawley and Tom Cotton, and two entities will be put on China's sanctions list, analysts said.

China won't just strike back symbolically, but will impose countermeasures that will make them feel the pain, analysts said.

From The Washington Free Beacon:

Chinese State Media Warn Country Will Interfere in U.S. Election
China is threatening to meddle in the upcoming U.S. presidential election as retribution for a flurry of American lawsuits seeking to hold Beijing accountable for the spread of the coronavirus.

The Communist Party "won't just strike back symbolically, but will impose countermeasures that will make them feel pain," according to the Global Times, an outlet controlled by the regime.

The threats come as outrage grows over China's handling of the coronavirus outbreak in the country and the subsequent global spread of the virus.

This will be interesting to watch - China needs us a hell of a lot more than we need them. Sure, the cheap gimcracks and toys are fun to play with but we do not need them to function. Other devices can just as easilly be made elsewhere - maybe at a higher cost but probably with a higher engineering and build quality. They may cost 30% more but they will last more than twice as long.

I know with machinery, if I am looking for something with quality and decent precision, I buy from a Taiwan or Indian source and not Chinese. If I need something quick, temporary and dirty then yes, Harbor Freight is my port of call but otherwise, no.

Governor Inslee is a moron who would not recognize science if it hit him in the face. From Seattle station KIRO:

Inslee sees our devastated economy as a wonderful ‘opportunity’ for climate agenda
Every day I hear from people whose lives are being destroyed by our crumbling economy. We have 900,000 newly unemployed workers in our state.

Business owners who have put their heart and soul into building wonderful enterprises are devastated as their companies — and their financial lives — are disappearing into an abyss. More than one listener has told me they are crying themselves to sleep every night.

What does Gov. Inslee think about these shattered lives? He views it as a great opportunity.

In a disgustingly tone-deaf interview on Bernie Sanders’ website, Inslee told the Bernie-bros, “this has always been an economic opportunity … we should not be intimidated by people who say you should not use this COVID crisis to peddle a solution to climate change … we can’t use COVID as an excuse for inaction on climate change … they’re both so similar … based on an understanding of science.”

Inslee’s failed presidential bid — with climate change as his singular focus — earned him 0% support among Democrats. Now, with our state’s workers and business owners looking at what could be decade-long financial ruin, he has decided to continue down that insane path.

And a bit more - highlighting Gov. Inslee's management style:

Late Thursday afternoon, the state announced that it would be shutting down unemployment payments for two days because it’s been swamped with millions in fraudulent claims that it paid out to scammers.

Jay Inslee cannot manage essential necessities for his citizens in this crisis. The sleepless nights will continue. But we’re still supposed to believe that our private info will be safe when we gave our phone numbers and e-mails to restaurants, an Inslee requirement if we want to go out to eat.

The guy has surrounded himself with Yes Men - he is not exposed to the entire picture and is not even aware that it exists. Perfect for a low-information voter who doesn't want to be bothered to think but this is not a good idea for someone who is supposed to be leading this state.

I am voting for this guy: Loren Culp

A giant topples - J.C. Penney

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Chalk it up to the Wuhan Flu as being the last straw. From The Hill:

J.C. Penney files for bankruptcy amid pandemic
J.C. Penney announced Friday it has filed for bankruptcy, marking the largest retail industry casualty thus far during the coronavirus pandemic.

The 118-year-old department store had already racked up a substantial amount of debt in recent years, a situation that was exacerbated by the sharp economic fallout of COVID-19.

“The Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has created unprecedented challenges for our families, our loved ones, our communities, and our country. As a result, the American retail industry has experienced a profoundly different new reality, requiring JCPenney to make difficult decisions in running our business to protect the safety of our associates and customers and the future of our company,” said CEO Jill Soltau.

One of the big ones. Failed to adapt to the changing landscape.

Dementia is a horrible disease but it happens and, it appears that Joe Biden is suffering from it. He is being "handled" by a cabal of leftists and they are assembling a wish-list of socialist dreams for America. The latest from The Washington Free Beacon:

Biden Taps Top Bernie Allies to Craft Economic Agenda
Presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden has called on two of socialist senator Bernie Sanders's (I., Vt.) top allies to help lead an economic advisory group tasked with shaping the party's 2020 agenda.

The Biden campaign tapped top Sanders allies Stephanie Kelton and Sara Nelson to join a "unity task force" focused on developing the Democratic platform on the economy. An economist at Stony Brook University, Kelton served as an economic adviser to Sanders's failed presidential campaigns in 2016 and 2020. She has argued that the government can pay for expensive programs, including the $94 trillion Green New Deal, by printing more money. Nelson, who is president of the Association of Flight Attendants, was Sanders's guest to President Donald Trump's State of the Union address in February. She has been floated as the progressive pick to replace AFL-CIO leader Richard Trumka in 2021, tying her candidacy to the implementation of far-left values in the labor movement.

Much more at the site - I can not begin to outline just how bad this would be for our Nation. These people are innumerate. They are pushing an idea based on no economic theory anywhere. It will not work and will lead to starvation and bread-lines. I read the entire article and threw up a little bit in my mouth - there are people out there who think that this is a good idea. That there would be no bad repercussions to "just printing more money". They do not know the history of the Wiemar Republic, of Zimbabwe, of Venezuela. They want to bring this to We The People.

I am really glad that I do not live in Michigan - from Legal Insurrection:

Michigan Legislature Closes to Avoid Gathering of Lockdown Protesters
Michigan is a hot mess. See hereherehereherehere, and here.

Thursday, Mary blogged about a lockdown protest, which by all appearances, seemed perfectly rational and understandable, given the circumstances.

Some more:

Because of the protests, Michigan’s legislature called an early end to their session. From Bloomberg (which explains the skewed language):

Michigan closed down its capitol in Lansing on Thursday and canceled its legislative session rather than face the possibility of an armed protest and death threats against Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer.

The gathering, meant to advocate opening the state for business despite the coronavirus pandemic, followed one April 30 that resulted in pictures of protesters clad in military-style gear and carrying long guns crowding the statehouse. They confronted police and taunted lawmakers.

“Taunted lawmakers.” Gee, if only lawmakers worked for us… if only…

Much much more at the site - this is just the briefest of excerpts. The Michigan government is out of control. In this sense, the C19 virus is a good thing - it forced the hand of the liberals and made them show their true colors less than 200 days before a major national election. This will be interesting.

And out for the afternoon

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Grocery deliveries and then a couple hours helping with COVID testing - ham radio and directing traffic.

Turned into a really nice day today but rain forecast for the next couple of days.

Hmmmm - Osama bin Laden

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An interesting bit of conjecture from Susan Daniels at American Thinker:

How did Osama bin Laden really die?
From the evidence, the case could be made that if President Barack Obama had terrorist Osama bin Laden killed in May 2011 at the latter's Abbottabad compound in Pakistan, Obama would have had to bring him back from the dead to do so.

On December 26, 2001, the Egyptian newspaper a-l Wafd posted a death announcement for bin Laden, citing as its source "a prominent official in the Afghan Taleban movement."  According to the source, bin Laden had received a formal Islamic burial ten days prior in Tora Bora.

On July 30, 2002, CNN headlined an article "Sources: No bodyguards, no bin Laden."  Apparently, several members of bin Laden's security team had been captured and shipped to Guantanamo.  Reported CNN, "Some high-level U.S. officials are already convinced by such evidence that bin Laden, who has not been seen or heard from in months, is dead."

On October 7, 2002, CNN ran a speculative article citing Afghan president Hamid Karzai, headlined "Karzai: bin Laden 'probably' dead."  On May 10, 2003, the U.K.'s Independent headlined an article, "Bin Laden died from wounds suffered in Tora Bora air raid, says Arab expert."  The expert in question traced his death to December 2001, the same month as the notice in the Egyptian paper.

Bin Laden had been in poor health for several years.  In March 2000, Asia Week described him as having "a kidney infection that is propagating itself to the liver and requires specialized treatment."  Additionally, a mobile dialysis machine had been delivered to his hideout in Kandahar in the first half of 2000.  Examining a video from December 2001, CNN medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta argued that bin Laden was likely suffering from "chronic kidney failure, renal failure."

And why would Obama do this?

In Spring 2011, Obama was feeling the heat. Donald Trump had forced the birth certificate issue into the mainstream media, and Jerome Corsi's much anticipated book, Where's the Birth Certificate?, was due to be released on May 18. Under pressure to respond, Obama made an unusual TV appearance on April 27 to put the issue to rest.

Five days later, Obama was back on TV announcing what Politico called an "astounding military and intelligence triumph." Unfortunately, there were as many unanswered questions about bin Laden's announced death as there were about Obama's announced birth certificate.

Well researched and documented and makes a lot of sense.  Not having bin Laden's corpse was a big red flag then and still is. This level of secrecy before the action I understand. This level of secrecy after? Someone is hiding something that is detrimental to Obama's "legacy"

Only 173 days away - always good to get a running start. From America's Newspaper of Record:

Governor Newsom Orders Ballots To Be Sent To Every Cemetery In State
To prepare for the upcoming November election, Governor Gavin Newsom has ordered ballots to be sent to every cemetery in the state.

The governor of California said that ballot boxes would be sent to cemeteries across the state to ensure everyone had the right to vote, dead or alive.

"We need every single Californian to vote, living or dead," Newsom said, wagging his finger. "Without everyone doing their part, no matter their undocumented living status, we can't beat the Republicans this time around. It's science!" When he said the word "science," he lifted a test tube into the air to lend some credence to his claims.

Newsom said that people who don't want the dead to vote are discriminating against the "mortally challenged."

Nothing today so far

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Surfed a bit (nothing happening out there), worked a bit and now in dire need of some coffee.

Back in an hour...

And that is it for today

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Feeling a bit sleepy so calling it an early evening. Turned into a gorgeous one - colorful sunset and minimal clouds on the horizon. Some thunderheads over near Mt. Baker but locally, things are quiet.

Doing some computer work tomorrow morning and then groceries and testing. Got a new radio toy - there is a mode called DMR (Digital Mobile Radio) which was first developed for commercial radio and is now seeing service on the ham radio bands. They process the speech and transmit a digital radio signal. The upshot is clearer transmissions, more channels per given frequency range and some other cool goodies. One of these goodies is that because of its digital nature, interfacing with the internet is easy.

With regular ham radio, we have repeaters - a device that listens for a ham communication on one frequency and retransmits it on a slightly different frequency with much more power. These are located on a high elevation so a small cheap handheld radio can cover a huge range of territory. DMR repeaters introduce the internet so you can connect to any open repeater in any location in the world. Over 30,000 of them all over the globe. I am now playing with number 30,001. For about $100, you get a Raspberry Pi computer with a "hat" that plugs on top and has a very small DMR radio transciever - enough to cover your house and immediate neighborhood. Plug this into power and an internet connection and you can now talk to the globe from your hand-held walkie-talkie.

This is really a fun time to be alive...

Copyright May 14th, 2020 at 7:12PM PDT

Make and market an N95 mask with a gasketed hole for a coffee straw. The straw could be packaged with the mask.

I want 5% of the profit. Comment to this message if you want to talk.

Projection much? John Brennan

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Things are getting a bit too hot for him and he is lashing out. From his Twitter feed:

Brennan's entire Twitter feed is just one big pathetic rant. Brennan was head of Obama's Central Intelligence Agency and oversaw operation Crossfire Hurricane and the spying on Candidate Trump. His was an agency whose standard operating procedure was dirty tricks and zero respect for the law. For him to claim that everyone associated with President Trump was doing this is simply a case of projection. He knows he screwed up. He knows he is going down but this is the only way he can try to defend his self-image.

From InfoGalactic:

Psychological projection
Psychological projection is a theory in psychology in which humans defend themselves against their own unconscious impulses or qualities (both positive and negative) by denying their existence in themselves while attributing them to others. For example, a person who is habitually rude may constantly accuse other people of being rude.

A textbook example.

The Wuhan death count

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Some really funny numbers out there - from Colorado's The Durango Herald:

Montezuma County disputes state’s coronavirus death count
The Montezuma County Coroner’s Office is disputing the state’s claim of a third fatal case of the coronavirus in Cortez, saying the person died of alcohol poisoning.

County Coroner George Deavers said the person tested positive for COVID-19, but an investigation by him and the pathologist determined the cause of death was ethanol toxicity. The person’s blood-alcohol content was 0.55, or almost seven times the legal driving limit of 0.08 in Colorado, Deavers said. A BAC of 0.3 is considered lethal.

“COVID was not listed on the death certificate as the cause of death. I disagree with the state for listing it as a COVID death, and will be discussing it with them this week,” he said Tuesday.

The hospitals and state Health Departments get a lot more money for COVID-19 deaths - a bounty if you will.

Jeffrey Epstein didn't kill himself, he was just one of the first COVID-19 fatalities.

Now that was fun - COVID testing

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DId my scheduled day and planning to do another couple hours tomorrow after grocery deliveries. The person I worked with today was born on Camano but while her kids were growing up, they used to go to Mt. Baker for skiing many times each winter so she knew my old area quite well. We spent the afternoon trading stories about various characters we knew. Really fun. The work was pretty basic - between the two islands, we had 6,000 people signed up for testing over five days. It will be good to get a baseline count of the actual population instead of relying on some slanted model.

Did not do any real radio work beyond the checking in and out but today was a good drill and if we needed it and not had it...

Weather held off - cool and cloudy but no rain and it got sunny later in the afternoon.

Quick dinner and surf for a bit.

Packing

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Getting ready for this afternoon on the air. Got the radio battery (and a spare) charged and also verified that the correct frequencies had been programmed. Fixing some lunch and packing some clothing and a book into the car. Weather is changable - off and on rain and cool so layering up.

Back later this afternoon.

Brilliant idea for recovery

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We saw what President Trump's reduction in taxes did for our Nations economy - it jumpstarted an incredible recovery. Steve Cortes takes this to its logical extreme at Real Clear Politics:

Forget Pelosi's Boondoggle Bill -- Take Taxes to Zero Instead
After spending most of the pandemic crisis on vacation, an ice cream-fortified Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi finally emerged from her magnificent kitchen to propose a behemoth mess of a spending bill to allegedly save America’s faltering economy. Her 1,815-page proposal forms the “War and Peace” of legislative monstrosities. In fact, the endless big-government wish list contains generous payments for illegal immigrants, tax credits for wealthy residents of high-tax states, massive grants to fiscally irresponsible states, a national prohibition on identification for voters, and even federal loans for lobbyists.

This $3 trillion disaster would massively balloon the federal debt only to consolidate administrative state power and deepen dependency on federal programs. We conservatives should of course reject this proposal, but we must not only be agents of negation. Instead, it is time for the America First movement to proffer workable alternatives that can provide a badly needed boost to American workers and small businesses.

And the solution:

Given the scope of this problem, our response must be big, bold, and swift. So, in contrast to Pelosi’s government leviathan blueprint, I propose a simple, elegant, and immediate economic propellant: eliminate all federal taxes for a recovery year.

Putting the Internal Revenue Service on furlough would provide an immediate pay raise for the 120 million Americans still working. Even the still-employed badly need reaffirmation, and allowing our citizens to keep virtually all of their earnings can rebuild and reinvigorate the psyche of a country badly damaged by the coronavirus and the concomitant wide-scale societal shutdowns. As many parts of America reopen, the surest way to add vigor to the restart is cash in the bank accounts and pockets of workers. But rather than some centrally planned, top-down command structure, taking taxes to zero will empower millions of Americans to make their own informed decisions about spending, hiring, and investing.

Brilliant. Pelosi's plan will allow the Democrats to consolidate their power and bail out failing states (Democrat run). It is us taxpayers who will be taking the hair-cut to fund this scam.

Steve's plan makes the Federal Government take the hair-cut. Perfect. They are too bloated as it is already.

Michigan meltdown - half-Whit

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Michigan governor Whitmer is not getting her way so she is lashing out. From The Hill:

Michigan Gov. Whitmer: Lockdown protests are 'racist and misogynistic'
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) said Wednesday that the lockdown protests are “racist and misogynistic” and called on those with a platform to discourage the demonstrators.

Whitmer told ABC’s “The View” that the protests are “really political” as demonstrators have brought nooses, Confederate flags and Nazi symbolism.

“This is not appropriate in a global pandemic,” she said. “But it’s certainly not an exercise of democratic principles where we have free speech. This is calls to violence. This is racist and misogynistic.”

No Confederate flags have been seen at the protests - there have been a number of Gadsen flags but those predate the American Civil War by 86 years (1775 v/s 1861).

The only signs I have seen with Nazi (National Socialist) insignia have been in direct protest to Whitmer's heavy-handed tactics - directed at her.

She has nothing so she falls back on the default liberal cry of racism.

We need to remember to punch back twice as hard.

And coffee

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Working at home this morning.

Going to be directing people for COVID testing this afternoon. Our ham radio organization got called up by the County DEM to help them test the people of the island.

Back in a bit..

Quiet news day so far and very cool and overcast weather this morning - rained last night.

Got a new judge in Texas and he is a plain speaker. An excerpt from Don Surber:

Readers may recall a judge threw Shelley Luther in jail for seven days because she refused to apologize for re-opening her beauty shop -- Salon à la Mode in Dallas -- amid this unconstitutional and ineffective lockdown.

The governor and the Texas Supreme Court sprang her from jail after two days, and Ted Cruz got a haircut. End of story, right?

But Shelley Luther is not the only star in this farce. Blacklock wrote the majority opinion. He made it so simple, even I could understand it.

He began with a quote, "The Constitution is not suspended when the government declares a state of disaster."

Then he crisply explained it.

Blacklock wrote, "All government power in this country, no matter how well-intentioned, derives only from the state and federal constitutions. Government power cannot be exercised in conflict with these constitutions, even in a pandemic.

Blacklock concluded with this:

"Ideally, these debates would play out in the public square, not in courtrooms. No court should relish being asked to question the judgment of government officials who were elected to make difficult decisions in times such as these. However, when constitutional rights are at stake, courts cannot automatically defer to the judgments of other branches of government. When properly called upon, the judicial branch must not shrink from its duty to require the government’s anti-virus orders to comply with the Constitution and the law, no matter the circumstances."

Emphasis mine - just wow. Spot-on perfect. This is what the separation of powers is all about. Yes, a governor can respond to an emergency but once that emergency has passed and once the people in charge have some perspective, decisions must comply with the Constitution.

Nice to see justice prevail. I also like that his decision fit onto a single sheep of paper. Very clear, unequivocal and to the point.

Great news out of California

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From OAN Network:

Republican Mike Garcia Wins CA-25 Special Election
Republican Mike Garcia has claimed victory in California, flipping the state’s 25th District seat from blue to red. On Wednesday, his Democrat opponent Christy Smith conceded the special election race and congratulated her rival. She is now setting her sights on the general election in the fall.

The swing district’s seat used to belong to former congresswoman Katie Hill before she resigned from Congress in October over a sex scandal.

Good - a conservative representative. Let us hope that this becomes more of a landslide than a trend. For more of Katie's story: here, here and here for starters.

How this all started

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Makes more sense than most of the stories going around:

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All this fuss over a simple coronavirus? Here is one example of what could happen - from Space Weather:

THE GREAT GEOMAGNETIC STORM OF MAY 1921:
99 years ago this week, people around the world woke up to some unusual headlines.

"Telegraph Service Prostrated, Comet Not to Blame" — declared the Los Angeles Times on May 15, 1921. "Electrical Disturbance is 'Worst Ever Known'” — reported the Chicago Daily Tribune. "Sunspot credited with Rail Tie-up" — deadpanned the New York Times.

They didn’t know it at the time, but the newspapers were covering the biggest solar storm of the 20th Century. Nothing quite like it has happened since.

It began on May 12, 1921 when giant sunspot AR1842, crossing the sun during the declining phase of Solar Cycle 15, began to flare. One explosion after another hurled coronal mass ejections (CMEs) directly toward Earth. For the next 3 days, CMEs rocked Earth’s magnetic field. Scientists around the world were surprised when their magnetometers suddenly went offscale, pens in strip chart recorders pegged uselessly to the top of the paper.

Then the fires began. Around 02:00 GMT on May 15th, a telegraph exchange in Sweden burst into flames. About an hour later, the same thing happened across the Atlantic in the village of Brewster, New York. Flames engulfed the switch-board at the Brewster station of the Central New England Railroad and quickly spread to destroy the whole building. That fire, along with another one about the same time in a railroad control tower near New York City's Grand Central Station, is why the event is sometimes referred to as the "New York Railroad Superstorm."

What caused the fires? Electrical currents induced by geomagnetic activity surged through telephone and telegraph lines, heating them to the point of combustion. Strong currents disrupted telegraph systems in Australia, Brazil, Denmark, France, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, Sweden, the UK and USA. The Ottawa Journal reported that many long-distance telephone lines in New Brunswick were burned out by the storm. On some telegraph lines in the USA voltages spiked as high as 1000 V.

These things happen from time to time - the article cites some more examples of what happens and then, the $64,000 question:

What would happen if such a storm occurred today?

Researchers have long grappled with that question–most recently in a pair of in-depth papers published in the journal Space Weather: "The Great Storm of May 1921: An Exemplar of a Dangerous Space Weather Event" by Mike Hapgood (Rutherford Appleton Laboratory, UK) and "Intensity and Impact of the New York Railroad Superstorm of May 1921" by Jeffrey Love (US Geological Survey) and colleagues.

Our civilization would basically fall to shit as it would take six months or more to get electricity back to our cities. No cell service. No internet. No nothing. We think a simple flu is bad? This solar storm was similar to the Carrington Event of 1859. We had a similar event happen on July 23rd, 2012:

Near Miss: The Solar Superstorm of July 2012
If an asteroid big enough to knock modern civilization back to the 18th century appeared out of deep space and buzzed the Earth-Moon system, the near-miss would be instant worldwide headline news.

Two years ago, Earth experienced a close shave just as perilous, but most newspapers didn't mention it. The "impactor" was an extreme solar storm, the most powerful in as much as 150+ years.

Thank God that we were off by one week:

"I have come away from our recent studies more convinced than ever that Earth and its inhabitants were incredibly fortunate that the 2012 eruption happened when it did," says Baker.  "If the eruption had occurred only one week earlier, Earth would have been in the line of fire."

Preparedness is not stupid. It is not a matter of IF, it is a matter of WHEN

Transparency

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Not always what you wish for:

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I really almost (almost) feel sorry for the guy - he was a complete Manchurian Candidate - you can see the puppet-strings if the light is just right. He is so narcissistic that he does not realize that he was just used as a tool by the deep state actors. How else would you account for his rapid ascension.

Local History

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We have a really wonderful little museum and historical society in this area. They have several buildings and this is the sign they have posted - cute:

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Liberal governor wants to shut down the state and crash the economy so it can get on the Federal teat.
Wisco Supreme Court says no. From the Washington Examiner:

Wisconsin Supreme Court strikes down governor’s extension of stay-at-home order
The Wisconsin state Supreme Court ruled against Democratic Gov. Tony Ever’s stay-at-home order extension.

In a 4-3 decision, the court said Evers’ order is "invalid, and therefore, unenforceable," because the governor does not have the authority to enforce it without input from the state legislature. Four out of five of the Supreme Court’s conservative judges were in the majority.

The decision leaves the stay-at-home order in place until May 20 to give Evers and Republicans time to work out a new plan.

Good - separation of powers is there for just this reason.

Back home for a bit

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Heading out for Thai food and a quick trip to Walmart.

Deliveries went really well - lots of food, almost needing two trips. Might bring the van next time.

Swung by the county COVID testing place and got briefed for tomorrow and Friday. Today was just Island first responders so not many people needed - tomorrow and Friday are going to be busy - general island population.

Don't feel like cooking tonight so heading North for Thai food.

A fun metric - radio ratings

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Great story from the Washington Examiner:

WMAL, home to Rush Limbaugh and Mark Levin, takes No. 1 in liberal DC market
The liberal Washington area has a new king of radio: conservative talk radio station WMAL, home to Rush Limbaugh, Mark Levin, Ben ShapiroLarry O'Connor, and other popular voices.

For the first time in 34 years, the Cumulus Media station held the top spot in the ratings, taking down the other kings of the D.C. airwaves, WAMU and WTOP.

Mark Levin told Secrets that the long-coming ratings win was due to a “tremendous combination of national and local hosts, compelling and consistent format from early morning to late at night, outstanding and knowledgeable station management led by [Cumulus News/talk Vice President and Program Director] Bill Hess, and most of all, deep respect for the intelligence and interests of our wonderful audience!”

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And looking at the numbers, they were not that far behind, gaining steadily and they blew past the other stations in April with a significant margin. The people are tired of the liberal narrative - they see that it does not track reality and are looking for alternatives.

Heading out for a while

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Coffee and a couple of errands. Grocery deliveries later this afternoon.

Spending a couple of days helping as Island County is doing COVID testing for the general population. Directing traffic and guiding people. This is at a school on the island so should be really straightforward - big parking lot and people will drive through a tent for the test. Everyone stays in their cars. Perfect use of ham radio.

Back to winter dress (Carharts and a sweatshirt) as it is cold and rainy ☹

A Logical Fallacy is a pattern of reasoning rendered invalid by a flaw in its logical structure that can neatly be expressed in a standard logic system. An argument that is formally fallacious is always considered wrong. Eaton Rapids Joe has a perfect example of one and it's impact on the Chinese Flu:

Appeal to authority fallacy:
This is a big issue today.

Authorities are often guilty of answering questions you did not ask. For example, they might define your question far more narrowly than you intended. They might hear your question "How do I minimize the impact of Covid-19?" as "How do I minimize the number of deaths caused by Covid-19?" Truthfully, would you expect a medical doctor to hear that question any other way?

Other times, experts will unconsciously add constraints to your request. "How can I bring the economy back on-line?" morphs to "How can favored groups gain advantage as the economy is brought back on-line?"

The last paragraph really outlines what the Democrats are trying to do. They are trying to grab power. They have nothing to offer us politically so they have stopped trying. It is all about power with them and cheating and manipulating to build it and to hold on to it.

Here is a good list of logical fallacies - see how many of these you find when you look at the news or when you listen to a liberal. They cannot be unseen. (fnord)

Restrictions

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We really need to re-open.

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Russian collusion

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Got it right here - from Breitbart:

Fox News: John Brennan Suppressed Intel Saying Russia Wanted Hillary Clinton to Win
Fox News’ Ed Henry reported Tuesday evening that Acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell has declassified information calling into question the conclusion that Russia interfered in the 2016 election to help Donald Trump.

Henry told Tucker Carlson on Tucker Carlson Tonight that the new information would suggest that John Brennan, who headed the Central Intelligence Agency under President Barack Obama, “also had intel saying, actually, Russia wanted Hillary Clinton to win because she was a known quantity, she had been secretary of state, and Vladimir Putin’s team thought she was more malleable, while candidate Donald Trump was unpredictable.”

That collusion I believe - it makes the most sense. Hillary has a long history of working with Putin, Bill got a $500,000 fee for one speech just before Russia was able to purchase 20% of the US's Uranium Mining industry. Russia and the Clintons and Obama have been in bed for a long long time. The idea that the Russians would push for President Trump to win the election simply does not make any sense.

Not surprised - online shopping

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From Tech Crunch:

US e-commerce sales jump 49% in April, led by online grocery
Online retailers are seeing Black Friday-like sales due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on their business. According to new data from Adobe’s Digital Economy Index, U.S. e-commerce jumped 49% in April, compared to the baseline period in early March before shelter-in-place restrictions went into effect. Online grocery helped drive the increase in sales, with a 110% boost in daily sales between March and April. Meanwhile, electronic sales were up 58% and book sales have doubled.

The data comes from Adobe’s index of the digital economy, which analyzes more than one trillion online transactions across 100 million different SKUs. The company works with 80 of the top 100 U.S. online retailers to gather its data.

This is going to really suck for the small retail businesses that have had to close. Places like the box stores have enough financial inertia to withstand a downturn but the mom & pop places do not. Now, the customer base is getting used to shopping online so less impetus to visit the real stores when they reopen.

Just wonderful - China

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Curious story from Ars Technica:

Large chunks of a Chinese rocket missed New York City by about 15 minutes
A week ago, China launched the newest version of its largest rocket, the Long March 5B, from its southernmost spaceport. The launch proceeded normally and represented another success for China as it seeks to build a robust human spaceflight program. Over the next few years, this rocket will launch components of a modular space station.

And the story:

The US Space Force’s 18th Space Control Squadron confirmed that the core stage re-entered Earth's atmosphere at 11:33am ET (15:33 UTC) on Monday at a location over the Atlantic Ocean. At this point, the core stage would have been at an altitude of 80km and rapidly descending toward Earth. McDowell said there were some reports emerging about possible debris found downrange in Cote d'Ivoire.

It is perhaps worth noting that before it entered Earth's atmosphere, the core stage track passed directly over New York City. Had it reentered the atmosphere only a little bit earlier, perhaps 15 to 20 minutes, the rocket's debris could have rained down on the largest metro area in the United States.

Talking about 20 tons weight - a lot of kinetic energy. Not the first time that China messed up.
From Ars Technica, November 25th, 2019:

Once again, a Chinese rocket has doused a village with toxic fuel
China's space program now ranks among the most successful in the world, with more launches than any other country on an annual basis, the capability to send humans into orbit, and an exploration plan that includes firsts such as the Chang'e-4 spacecraft's landing on the far side of the Moon.

Story:

On Friday, a Long March 3B rocket launched a pair of Beidou satellites into orbit. The rocket's ascent was normal, but its first stage booster tumbled into a village down range from the Xichang Satellite Launch Center, in the South-Central part of the country.

It has happened many times before, including most infamously in 1996 when a Long March 3B rocket veered off course shortly after a launch and crashed into a village. Chinese officials reported six dead from the accident, although Western sources have speculated that hundreds of Chinese citizens may have died in the accident.

Hell of a way to run a space program - success at all costs and never mind a few peasants. The joys of communism.

Our society in a few months?

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We are seeing the "Karens" coming out of the woodwork. The nannys. The scolds.

From Kevin James

More voices of hope - WA State

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Seattle weather guru Cliff Mass weighs in on the ridiculous so-called quarantine:

Seattle Parks without Parking, Washington Beaches without Beachcombers
If you want to drive to a major Seattle park, you will not be able to park there.

And if you are looking forward to a walk on a Washington State ocean beach, forget it.  The beaches are off limits.

And at many parks you will be hectored and bullied in way that is contradictory to the values of a free society.

Why?
Because some public officials believe, with virtually no evidence or basis in science, that these restrictions on outdoor areas are promoting public safety. These politicians and bureaucrats may mean well, but, in reality, they are harming many of those they wish to assist. They are also working against the most progressive values of our community, taking actions that are inconsistent with the essential principles of our democracy.

There is minimal risk of coronavirus spread outdoors. That is science.
This is not speculation or wishful thinking but based on the scientific literature, observational evidence, and fact-based logic. I reviewed some of the literature in my April 18th blog post and there has been more recent research during the past few months. For example, recent lab studies carried out by the U.S. Army’s high-level biosecurity laboratory at Fort Detrick, Md. (see below) found that the virus survived for only 2 minutes on a surface and as an aerosol droplet for only 90 seconds during the summer. And noted in my earlier blog, there is no documented example of COVID transmission in the outside air and there are many reasons for this, including the effects of solar ultraviolet radiation, the higher relative humidity, and the huge potential for dispersion (and thus low concentrations) in the vast quantity of outside air, enhanced by outdoor wind.

Much more at the site. Once again, what is happening is that public policy is being decided by narrative and not by numbers. This is wrong and there is no reason for it to ever happen. These "officials" are doing things that SOUND GOOD instead of doing things that DO GOOD and there is a huge difference between the two.

Be sure to read the 35+ comments - a lot of people in agreement.

Some voices of hope - WA State

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Some people are speaking up against the creeping tyranny - from Zero Hedge:

Seattle Cop Prepares To Be Fired After Refusing To Remove Viral Video Reminding Officers Not To Obey 'Tyrannical Orders'
A Port of Seattle Police Officer has been placed on administrative leave after refusing to delete a viral video reminding police officers that they don't have unlimited powers.

"I have seen officers around the country enforcing tyrannical orders; I was hoping it was a minority of officers, anymore, I am not so sure," said Officer Greg Anderson, a Special Forces veteran.

There is a Go Fund Me campaign - currently at $271,888 - a lot of people out there agree with Officer Anderson

Rebellion to tyrants is obedience to God.
--Benjamin Franklin

Things get crazier as the unveiling continues - from Real Clear Investigations:

FBI's Man in Europe Undercut Ohr's Claim of Limited Russiagate Role
An FBI agent's newly released testimony undercuts top Justice Department official Bruce Ohr's denial of a conflict of interest between his Trump-Russia efforts and his wife’s work for Fusion GPS, producer of the discredited Steele dossier.

The agent, Michael Gaeta, told congressional probers that Ohr had pressed him to make sure the FBI was “doing something” with the dossier. According to Gaeta, Ohr pushed Steele's collection of memos alleging nefarious ties between the Trump campaign and Russia in part because Ohr’s wife Nellie worked for the same company that had hired ex-British spy Christopher Steele.

Gaeta's testimony was released last week along with 56 other Trump-Russia interviews conducted by the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. He recalled an August 2016 phone call from Ohr.

Much more at the site - these documents are pure gold. Obama's legacy is toast.

This is going to go over well

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Wonder if they are not grossly overstepping their bounds - the backlash could be really interesting. From the Los Angeles Times:

Los Angeles County 'with all certainty' to continue lockdown for three more months
Officials in Los Angeles County, California, said they are likely to extend stay-at-home orders until the end of July.

During a board of supervisors meeting Tuesday, Public Health Director Barbara Ferrer said she expects the county to continue its shutdown measures unless “dramatic change to the virus and tools are at hand.”

“Our hope is that by using the data, we’d be able to slowly lift restrictions over the next three months,” Ferrer said.

Los Angeles County has a bit more than 10,000,000 people. I wonder what percentage is going to say Hell No to this... I bet it is pretty high.

Just like Democrats - from NOQ Report:

Washington state hiring daycare workers for coronavirus quarantine centers
What does Washington state have planned? It would seem they’re preparing to take children who are either positive for the coronavirus or who live in households where there are people who have tested positive and move them to “Emergency Quarantine Centers” away from their families. According to a recent job posting, they’re willing to pay extra for DCYF employees in King, Snohomish, and Benton counties where the coronavirus is most prevalent to accept this assignment.

In essence, they’re looking to man 24-hour daycare facilities that keep children in quarantine. This seems to line up perfectly with H.R. 6666, the TRACE Act, which the NOQ Report Podcast will be discussing in-depth later today.

Abolish the strong two-parent family - welfare did this for the blacks. Now, they are stuck on the Democrat plantation and too disorganized and fractured to do anything about it. Lyndon Johnson said of his Great Society programs: "This will have the niggers voting Democrat for the next 200 years". Now they are doing it to everyone else.

How to kill the middle class - from our sainted Governor's minions:

Phase 2 Restaurant/Tavern Reopening - COVID-19 Requirements
Phase 2: The restaurant/tavern must adopt a written procedure for dine-in service that is at least as strict as the Phase 2 procedure below and complies with all safety and health requirements.

    1. Hand sanitizer should be available at entry for all staff and patrons (assuming supply availability).
    2. No bar seating is permitted during Phase 2. If an establishment has bar seating it must be closed off to prohibit use.
    3. If the establishment does not offer table service, they must have protocols in place to ensure adequate social distancing at food and drink pick-up stations, and seating within their dining area.
    4. All parties and tables must be 5 guests or less.

Line item nine is a doozy:

If the establishment offers table service, create a daily log of all customers and maintain that daily log for 30 days, including telephone/email contact information, and time in. This will facilitate any contact tracing that might need to occur.

Seriously? Who wrote this - George Orwell? I thought 1984 was supposed to be a cautionary tale and not an operations manual. This is not about public health, this is about control of the masses. Time to push back.

And out for the day

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DId some work here this morning.

Heading out soon for coffee and then a dump run followed by a quick run to Bellingham in the van.

Back in a couple of hours.

Doing business in China - NOT

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Looks like Apple is pulling back substantially - from the Economic Times:

Apple may take a bigger bite of India's manufacturing pie
Several meetings between Apple's senior executives and top ranking government officials over the last few months have paved the way for the iPhone maker examining the possibility of shifting nearly a fifth of its production capacity from China to India and scaling up its local manufacturing revenues, through its contract manufacturers, to around $40 billion over the next five years, say officials familiar with the matter.

If this happens, iPhone maker could become India's largest exporter, say experts.

"We expect Apple to produce up to $40 billion worth of smartphones, mostly for exports through its contract manufacturers Wistron and Foxconn, availing the benefits under the production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme," a senior government official told ET.

Good move - India is a lot friendlier to the rest of the world than China. Nice to see them being rewarded economically for this friendship. China is building its military, India is building factories.

I've got a little list

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This will be fun - from FOX News:

Grenell declassifies names of Obama officials who ‘unmasked’ Flynn
Acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell has decided to declassify information about Obama administration officials who were behind the “unmasking” of Michael Flynn -- whose calls with the former Russian ambassador during the presidential transition were picked up in surveillance and later leaked -- and their names could soon be made public, a source confirmed.

And the money shot:

Asked if former President Barack Obama's name is on the list of officials involving in unmasking Flynn, the source would not say but stressed the list would make waves.

Heh - this will be fun to see. Most corrupt administration ever.

China is acting poorly - from the London Daily Mail:

China flexes its military muscle: Beijing exploits Covid crisis to assert control of strategically vital South China Sea - and the US sends three warships in response
China has taken advantage of the world’s struggle with Covid-19 to mount a disturbing display of military firepower and push its illegal claims to land and oilfields in a two-million-square-mile area in the South China Sea.

The moves have triggered an immediate response from US President Donald Trump.

Deeply worried about Beijing’s insatiable desire for land and the way its military has occupied areas by stealth, Washington has sent three warships to the region.

China’s escalation of war games in the region follows decades of aggression by the Communist government.

It is ignoring international law as it militarises islands and reefs, plans to exploit oil and mineral fields, and hopes to build nuclear reactors in the area.

China needs to be taken down a couple of notches. Now, while it is still relatively weak militarily. They are not a friend to the rest of the world.

Heh - #ObamaGate

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From the #ObamaGate twitter feed:

Corruption runs deep and long

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From October 19th, 2017 - The Hill:

Bill Clinton sought State’s permission to meet with Russian nuclear official during Obama uranium decision
As he prepared to collect a $500,000 payday in Moscow in 2010, Bill Clinton sought clearance from the State Department to meet with a key board director of the Russian nuclear energy firm Rosatom — which at the time needed the Obama administration’s approval for a controversial uranium deal, government records show.

Arkady Dvorkovich, a top aide to then-Russian President Dmitri Medvedev and one of the highest-ranking government officials to serve on Rosatom’s board of supervisors, was listed on a May 14, 2010, email as one of 15 Russians the former president wanted to meet during a late June 2010 trip, the documents show.

“In the context of a possible trip to Russia at the end of June, WJC is being asked to see the business/government folks below. Would State have concerns about WJC seeing any of these folks,” Clinton Foundation foreign policy adviser Amitabh Desai wrote the State Department on May 14, 2010, using the former president’s initials and forwarding the list of names to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s team.

Looking for Russian Collusion?
Clinton? Hands down. We also have Uranium One with Hillary.
Trump? Never.
Obama? You got it - remember his famous 2012 hot-mic moment with outgoing Russian President Dmitry Medvedev?

Time to drain the swamp.

Fun while it lasted

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Got a cold strong wind coming in from the West and it is forecast to bring rain.

We had a nice stretch of warm weather but not nearly long enough.

Yesterday, I posted about how the President of Tanzania sent all sorts of samples to the WHO to be tested for COVID-19.

Today, Jim Hoft continues the story, makes the point that President Magufuli is a Chemist and Jim provides a transcript of his speech. The money shot:

President Magufuli: We took samples from goats. We sent samples from sheeps. We took samples from pawpaws. We sent samples from car oil. And we took samples from other different things. And we took the samples to the laboratory without them knowing. And we even named all the samples. Like the sample of car oil. We named it Jabil Hamza, 30 years old, male. The results came back negative. When we took a sample from a Jackfruit (Durian) we named it Sarah Samuel, 45 years old, female. The results came back inconclusive. When we took samples from a Pawpaw we named it Elizabeth Ane, 26 years old, female. The result from the Pawpaw came back positive that it has corona. That means the liquid from a pawpaw is positive. We took samples from (a bird) called Kware. The results came back positive. We took samples from a rabbit. The results came back undeterminent. We took samples from a goat and the results came back positive. We took samples from a sheep and it came back negative and so on and so on. And so now you see this you have taken samples and the results come back positive and they have the corona. That means all the pawpaws should be in isolation also… The goat should be in isolation also.

The video is at the site so you can hear for yourself. Comedy gold...

(Pawpaw in this case refers to Carica papaya - we know it as papaya. Different from the North American fruit called pawpaw. Both delicious)

 

Cute image - Knock knock

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Who's there?
Durham who?

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From the Daily Truth Report:

#ObamaGate: John Durham Moves “Full-Throttle” on Russian Probe Review, Top Fed Prosecutors Involved
The dominoes are falling!

Just days after the charges against General Michael Flynn were dropped by the Department of Justice, it has been revealed that John Durham is moving “full-throttle” on the Russian probe review.

Specifically, Durham is investigating the origins of the Russia probe.

Multiple sources confirm that top federal prosecutors are involved in the review.

President Trump even brought attention to the issue with a series of “OBAMAGATE” tweets.

#Obamagate was the #1 trending topic on Twitter with over 1.48 million tweets.

Could not be happening to a nicer group of sociopaths.

ObamaGate? Follow it yourself here: #ObamaGate - as of now, it is up to 3.51 Million tweets.

If this is not what "going viral" means than I do not know what "going viral" means...

Oopsie - Iran Navy

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Looks like they are not as elite as they thought. From gCaptain:

At Least 19 Killed in Iranian Missile Training Accident in Gulf of Oman
One Iranian warship accidentally struck another with a missile during an exercise, killing 19 sailors and wounding 15 others, Iran’s navy said on Monday.

The incident took place during training in the Gulf of Oman, a sensitive waterway that connects to the Strait of Hormuz through which about a fifth of the world’s oil passes. Iran regularly conducts exercises in the area.

The frigate Jamaran fired at a training target released by a support ship, the Konarak. However, the support ship stayed too close to the target and was hit, state broadcaster IRIB said.

“The incident took place in the perimeter of Iran’s southern Bandar-e Jask port on the Gulf of Oman during Iranian Navy drills on Sunday afternoon, in which 19 sailors were killed and 15 others were injured,” state TV said, quoting the navy.

Heh - all President Trump has to do is the following:

Trump says he's instructed Navy to 'destroy' any Iranian gunboats harassing US ships

And of course, Iran had to rattle their sabers in response:

Guards chief: U.S. warships will be destroyed if they threaten Iran in Gulf

And now? They take care of the problem themselves.

More push-back - W.H.O.

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From Breitbart:

Report: Xi Jinping Asked W.H.O. Chief Tedros to Delay Pandemic Warning
The German newspaper Der Spiegel published a report this weekend stating German intelligence officials believed Chinese dictator Xi Jinping personally asked the head of the World Health Organization (W.H.O.), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, to delay key warnings about the Chinese coronavirus.

Xi allegedly urged Tedros not to declare the outbreak a pandemic yet at the time of the phone conversation, which the German newspaper said had occurred on January 21. He also reportedly encouraged Tedros not to share information showing that the virus could spread from person to person.

The conversation allegedly occurred a week before Tedros personally visited Beijing – despite mounting concerns that international travel may hinder the fight against the outbreak that at the time was largely contained in China – and discussed the newly identified virus with Xi.

Tedros declared the Chinese coronavirus crisis a pandemic on March 11, the day after Xi Jinping visited Wuhan, the origin city of the virus, and declared that China had beaten its local outbreak. Xi avoided Wuhan until then despite reports indicating cases of a contagious respiratory disease spreading in the central Chinese city as early as November 2019.

China seriously screwed up - they owe us big-time.

The CDC administration is getting some much-needed scrutiny - from Just The News:

CDC director on hot seat over his predictions, agency performance
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is increasingly on the hot seat for its performance during the pandemic, from its testing and counting of COVID-19 cases to its chief's predictions for a second wave of the disease.

For CDC Director Robert Redfeld, whose predictions about the AIDS virus decades ago drew unflattering scrutiny, it is familiar territory.

The latest controversy reportedly centers around concerns over the CDC's tally of coronavirus cases and deaths, which Dr. Deborah Birx reportedly challenged last week during a meeting of the White House Coronavirus Task Force she leads.

“Birx and others were frustrated with the CDC’s antiquated system for tracking virus data, which they worried was inflating some statistics — such as mortality rate and case count — by as much as 25 percent,” according to the Washington Post.

The newspaper quoted two sources who alleged Birx said, “There is nothing from the CDC that I can trust." White House and CDC officials did not immediately return calls Sunday seeking comment on the report.

Good. Redfeld is a political appointee. He has little or no accountability for his successes or failures and under his tenure, the CDC has gotten political and moved away from its core charter. Keeping American citizens healthy.

Back in a little while

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Coffee, mailbox and a couple of errands

Grocery deliveries later this afternoon.

Two headlines

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Heh - #ObamaGate

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Turning tables - going to be a fun couple of months:

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Two stories - Chinese COVID

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Who are you going to believe - a two-fer:

First - from CNN:

Georgia's daily coronavirus deaths will nearly double by August with relaxed social distancing, model suggests
As some Southeastern US states start to reopen, Georgia is projected to see its number of daily Covid-19 deaths nearly double by early August, according to a model shared by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and created by independent researcher Youyang Gu.

The epidemiological model, which provides projections for 40 countries and every US state, has been included among the seven models CDC highlights on its website for Covid-19 forecasting.

And the money shot:

Out of the 12 states in the Southeast United States, the model's projections for Georgia are the only that assume statewide social distancing will be relaxed starting on May 1, to reflect Gov. Brian Kemp's orders to reopen the state. The projections for the state of Georgia show the highest uptick in deaths per day will be between May and August for the region.

Second - from The Daily Wire:

Narrative Fail: 15 Days After Lockdown Ease, Georgia Sees Lowest Day Of COVID Hospitalizations
Republican Governor Brian Kemp of Georgia celebrated the state’s lowest number of hospitalized novel coronavirus patients and the fewest number of COVID-19 patients on ventilators on Saturday, 15 days since the Republican loosened lockdown restrictions in the face of persistent attacks from the mainstream media and the public disapproval of President Donald Trump.

And the money shot:

“Today marks the lowest number of COVID-19 positive patients currently hospitalized statewide (1,203) since hospitals began reporting this data on April 8th,” Kemp posted to Twitter on Saturday. “Today also marks the lowest total of ventilators in use (897 with 1,945 available). We will win this fight together!”

Who are you going to believe? A computer model designed by people with an agenda or the actual numbers.. One of these is based in reality, one of these is based in narrative. Time to end this foolishness and get back to work.

Ask and ye shall receive

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President Trump said that we needed ventilators - he is getting them.   From Associated Press:

Becoming ‘King of Ventilators’ may result in unexpected glut
As requests for ventilators from the national stockpile reached a crescendo in late March, President Donald Trump made what seemed like a bold claim: His administration would have 100,000 within 100 days.

At the time, the Department of Health and Human Services had not ordered any new ventilators since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in January. But records show that over the following three weeks, the agency scrambled to turn Trump’s pledge into a reality, spending nearly $3 billion to spur U.S. manufacturers to crank out the breathing machines at an unprecedented pace.

An analysis of federal contracting data by The Associated Press shows the agency is now on track to exceed 100,000 new ventilators by around July 13, about a week later than the 100-day deadline Trump first gave on March 27.

Their bias is showing: it is an "unexpected glut" because his advisors were grossly overstating the seriousness of the Wuhan Flu. Shipped on time too. And if we do not use them now, we will need them at some point in the future. Remember, New York City had a nice stash of them but Mayor de Blasio auctioned them off to make money.

Now, we have enough for the next pandemic. When it happens. Not IF, it is WHEN

Reaching for a napkin

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Heh:

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All things come to him who wait

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#ObamaGate is starting to unfold. A précis from Jesse Watters:

Pi Hole 5.0 is out

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Run Linux? Tired of online advertising and pop-up videos? Pi Hole is about the best I have found for getting rid of these pests. You do need to run it on a Linux box and the initial configuration is a bit involved but once set up, operation is smooth as can be. The device ties in to your network so it can be as simple as a cheap Raspberry Pi - hence the name.

Check out Pi Hole 
Announcement: PI-HOLE V5.0 IS HERE!

Rule number 1:

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Things are not as they seem - from Zero Hedge:

"We Sent Them Samples Of A Goat, A Papaya & A Pheasant": Tanzanian President Catches WHO In Epic Lie
As the number of confirmed coronavirus cases explodes across Africa, the creeping involvement of the WHO has made some leaders suspicious of the NGO. Tanzanian President John Magufuli was growing suspicious of the organization, so he reportedly decided to investigate whether the organization was as trustworthy and reliable as it claimed to be.

He played what the local press described as "a trick" on the organization: He sent the WHO samples of a goat, a papaya and a quail for testing.

All three samples reportedly tested positive. When the president heard the news, he reportedly confronted the WHO, then kicked the organization out of the country. Though, to be sure, the WHO has yet to comment on the situation.

That would suggest one of two conclusions: either the strain of SARS-CoV-2 running amok in Tanzania is much, much more infectious than scientists understand, or the WHO has been reporting incorrect results either on purpose (as an attempt to bolster its credibility in the face of President Trump's attacks) or via error (yet another indication that the WHO truly is "badly broken" - as  Vox described it back in 2015).

Most rational people would probably accept the latter scenario as the most accurate one.

Indeed - either they are marinating in the virus or the WHO is using the crappy Chinese tests that yielded high false-positives. Or, the WHO lied to try to preserve their relevance. My guess is on the latter...

Great to see America reopening despite the little tyrants trying to secure power. From Todd Starnes:

Police Shove Through Crowd, Arrest Mother’s Day Diners at Fresno Waffle Shop
At least two people were hauled away by police after law enforcement officers tried to enter a diner that was illegally opened in Fresno, California.

The diners were waiting in line outside the Waffle Shop. Officers ordered the diners to step aside so they could enter the establishment. When they refused, the officers forcefully shoved aside patrons. It was during that confrontation that at least two people were taken into custody.

Jim Fisher filmed the incident and posted video on Facebook.

“Disgraceful on Mother’s Day,” he wrote.

The owner of the Waffle Shop had decided to reopen his business over the weekend in defiance of local leaders.

A bit more - wonderful tactics:

“It’s not about money. It’s more about principles and rights and getting back to the way life’s supposed to be,” Mr. Ibrahim told Fox26.

The television station reports that diners were socially distanced and staff members wore masks to comply with CDC guidelines.

However, on Friday he was slapped with a $1,000 fine. And the city warns the fines could increase to $10,000.

And a few minutes after the ticket was issued – the restaurant’s water supply slowed to a trickle.

I bet that a bunch of business owners (and their lawyers) are going to have very lucrative settlements after this debacle is finally over. It is also wonderful that the tyrant wannabe's are showing their hand so brazenly. Remember, a lot of them are up for re-election in less than 200 days.

Great catch from Don Surber and two of his commenters - they point to this story from The Hill, January 17th, 2017:

Obama pardons James Cartwright in leak case
President Obama on Tuesday pardoned retired Gen. James Cartwright, the former vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff accused of lying to the FBI about his conversations with reporters regarding U.S. efforts to cripple Iran’s nuclear program.

Cartwright pleaded guilty in October to one felony count of making false statements during the FBI’s investigation into leaks about the government’s role in a highly classified operation known as Operation Olympic Games.

Meanwhile, President Obama is getting all wee-wee'd up about his frame of General Michael Flynn falling apart. Chickens coming home to roost.

Keep on shakin'

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Got another quake today - much smaller (2.6Mag) and deeper (15 miles) at the town of Coupeville. Three people felt it.

Gorgeous day - ran out to get some 'maters and other garden veggies - soil temperature is finally warm enough to plant. Quick surf and then outside to prep for planting. Putting in a drip irrigation here too - had a small system at the farm and brought down a bunch of the hardware and the timers. Got a bunch of black plastic 5 Gal pails so planting in those - get the root temperature up to optimal. Rain in the forecast for Tuesday and Wednesday but summer is definitely showing itself.

Coffee time

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Slow morning - nothing on the internet and just puttering around here.

Had a bit of excitement last night with a 4.7 Mag earthquake off the West coast of Vancouver island. 6 miles deep but far enough away so no damage. No tsunami.

Back in an hour or two.

Un - frickin' - real - a two-fer

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As the whole Russian Collusion thing falls apart and is revealed to be nothing more than a high-school level coup attempt against the Bad Orange Man.
First, from The Federalist:

Obama Defense Official Evelyn Farkas Admitted She Lied On MSNBC About Having Evidence Of Collusion
Former Obama administration defense official Evelyn Farkas testified under oath that she lied during an MSNBC interview when she claimed to have evidence of alleged collusion, a newly declassified congressional transcript of her testimony shows. Farkas testified before the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence on June 26, 2017, as part of the committee’s investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election between Donald Trump and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton.

A bit more:

Farkas, who served in the Obama administration as the deputy assistant secretary of Defense for Russia, Ukraine, and Eurasia from 2012 through 2015, also claimed that administration officials appointed by Trump might even destroy evidence of alleged collusion if they “found out how we knew what we knew about the Trump staff’s dealing with Russians.”

They might “try to compromise those sources and methods,” Farkas alleged in the MSNBC interview. “And we would no longer have access to that intelligence.”

Two things come to mind.

#1) -  the timing is perfect and the locus of authority is perfect for her to have had a ringside seat in Biden's illicit dealings with the Ukraine. What was her level of involvement - did she have an active role? - and -
#2) - after all of their efforts to conceal that there was no Russian collusion, her claims that the Trump administration might destroy so-called evidence is an example of classical psychological projection.

Second? This from her Twitter account. The following is a screen-cap in case her actual post is deleted. Link to the tweet is to the left.

20200509-farkas.jpg

I guess that to today's Democrats, corruption is a badge of honor. That party has come a long long way. They have been taken over by the hard leftists.

Yum - I ❤ Tacos

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Simple but tasty and filling. Pulled pork, refried beans, fresh avocado, corn salsa,  sweet onion, lettuce and a dab or three of hot sauce on a fresh corn tortilla.

Heaven on a plate... Got enough extras in the fridge for a couple more meals.

Picked up some fresh green beans (California crop) today so two large jars of those are in a quick pickle. Did the whole routine of blanching them first so the texture will be perfect - not tough or stringy.

Surf a bit and then some videos.

Now that you say it...

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From Chris Lynch:

20200509-panic.jpg

Rot starts at the top - from NOQ Report:

Did Washington decline buying PPE because of bad optics for Governor Inslee?
An odd story came out this week on The Seattle Times that seemed on the surface to be an “exposé” on Washington Governor Jay Inslee’s dealing with a cousin who wanted to sell the state personal protective equipment (PPE) in the early stages of the coronavirus crisis. But it was conspicuously devoid of attention to real issues in how the Governor handled the situation. Instead of being an “exposé,” it seemed like it was running cover for the Governor’s actions.

The headline seemed damning. “Gov. Inslee connected personal contacts with Washington state officials in hunt for coronavirus supplies.” But even the headline was a nicer version of reality. It wasn’t “personal contacts” as most would picture them. It was a first cousin, someone who shared the Inslee name. It’s the type of omission that mainstream media—especially at the local level in far-left cities like Seattle—often use to cover for mistakes made by Democrats.

The elephant in the room that does get mentioned in the article is the fact that Mark Inslee, the Governor’s first cousin, was trying to sell the state PPE from Greater China Industries, a Bellevue-based importer whose CEO, Ben Zhang, is a supporter of the Governor to the tune of $6800. Mark Inslee made sure to remind the Governor of this fact in communications to his personal email account.

An hour later, Gov. Inslee forwarded the email to Washington state’s head of emergency management. “This is my cousin who is a reputable business person, even though he bears the name Inslee,” the governor wrote from his personal email account. “Just providing this info to you to use as you deem fit.”

So far, so good. It’s light on the nepotism. He notes that the supplier he’s forwarding is his cousin and does not appear to be pressuring for a deal to be made. In a standard situation, it is likely the Governor would have told his cousin to go through proper channels, but the coronavirus crisis has forced many, including Washington, to abandon the use of proper channels for the sake of expediency. If the story ended here with the state declining to make a deal with Greater China Industries, everything would have been in order.

But, everything was not in order. More at the site. Politics and Democrats ensuring that the narrative is preserved. Must preserve the narrative at all costs.

There is a very interesting person running for Governor this time - Loren Culp. If you are familiar with the fictional character of Walt Longmire, you are very close to who Culp is. Police chief, dead honest. Smart and zero bullshit. He will be a breath of fresh air for Washington State - a good Governor.

Great news - California is being very stupid. Looks like they will be paying the price. From Ars Technica:

Musk reacts to continued shutdown order, announces intent to move HQ
Elon Musk's contentious relationship with Alameda County officials reached a tipping point on Saturday, when the Tesla CEO announced plans to relocate the company's headquarters and "future programs" away from Fremont, CA, to facilities in Texas and Nevada "immediately." This came as a response to the continued forced closure of Tesla's Fremont manufacturing plant as per COVID-19 stay-in-place regulations.

"Frankly, this is the final straw," Musk tweeted.

Musk also announced his intent to file a lawsuit against Alameda County officials "immediately," adding, "The unelected & ignorant 'Interim Health Officer' of Alameda is acting contrary to the Governor, the President, our Constitutional freedoms & just plain common sense!" Musk also encouraged Tesla shareholders to file a class-action suit against the county.

Good - county officials want to act stupid, they should pay the price in terms of lost tax base. Everyone will probably kiss and make up but this is a wonderful awakening for the county drones as to who holds the power here. Not them.

Change in plans

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Did a quick run to Bellingham to the condo and to Hardware Sales. Back home now - nice warm day. High clouds have moved in but it is 83°F outside. Finally getting some warm weather - felt like a long long spring. Winter's tentacles just did not want to let go. Windows open and house airing out.

Working in the garage this weekend - Plan Q. Revision #47 - setting up the electronics and ham radio equipment in there instead of in the loft. I have enough going on in the loft (desk and media computer) and do not want to clutter it further. This is where the TV is and is sort of a relaxation area.

Since I am building the shop later this year, I will use the garage as a basic wood and metal shop and include the technology - electronics, programming and ham radio. This puts the ham radio equipment very close to their antennas (a few feet on the other side of the wall - closer is better) and puts a lot of like-minded equipment together. Many times while making something with electronics, I will need to drill or cut some plastic or metal. This way, everything is just a few feet away from each other. Going to be nice when done.

Also planning to start work removing the lawn and planting the veggies and flowers. Get something interesting going instead of just green weeds that need to be maintained.

Got some smoked pulled pork thawing out for dinner - stopped by and picked up some fresh tacos. Freeze the rest of them.

Time for coffee

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Check the mail box and get a coffee - working at home today.

Was outside sitting for a bit and someone flew by in an ultralight - about 15 feet off the water and about 30 feet from shoreline. We waved. Gorgeous day today - whisps of very high clouds. Forecast is for several days of nice clear warm weather.

Very large high and low tides today - supermoon last night. 

Wuhan flu? Bungled. From the New York Times:

Travel From New York City Seeded Wave of U.S. Outbreaks
New York City’s coronavirus outbreak grew so large by early March that the city became the primary source of new infections in the United States, new research reveals, as thousands of infected people traveled from the city and seeded outbreaks around the country.

The research indicates that a wave of infections swept from New York City through much of the country before the city began setting social distancing limits to stop the growth. That helped to fuel outbreaks in Louisiana, Texas, Arizona and as far away as the West Coast.

The findings are drawn from geneticists’ tracking signature mutations of the virus, travel histories of infected people and models of the outbreak by infectious disease experts.

A bit more:

But the Seattle outbreak proved to be a squall before the larger storm gathering in New York, where, at the end of February, thousands of infected people packed trains and restaurants, thronged tourist attractions and passed through its three major airports.

During crucial weeks in March, New York’s political leaders waited to take aggressive action, even after identifying hundreds of cases, giving the virus a head start. And by mid-March, when President Trump restricted travel from Europe, the restrictions were essentially pointless, the data suggest, as the disease was already spreading widely within the country.

If you are a democrat politician and the New York Times is criticizing you, you are toast. This is a fire and brinstone condemnation of de Blasio's management.

Well crap - RIP Richard Penniman

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Richard Penniman? Known as Little Richard - from the Rolling Stone:

Little Richard, Founding Father of Rock Who Broke Musical Barriers, Dead at 87
Little Richard, a founding father of rock and roll whose fervent shrieks, flamboyant garb, and joyful, gender-bending persona embodied the spirit and sound of that new art form, died Saturday. He was 87. The musician’s son, Danny Jones Penniman, confirmed the pioneer’s death to Rolling Stone, adding that the cause of death was cancer.

Starting with “Tutti Frutti” in 1956, Little Richard cut a series of unstoppable hits – “Long Tall Sally” and “Rip It Up” that same year, “Lucille” in 1957, and “Good Golly Miss Molly” in 1958 – driven by his simple, pumping piano, gospel-influenced vocal exclamations and sexually charged (often gibberish) lyrics. “I heard Little Richard and Jerry Lee Lewis, and that was it,” Elton John told Rolling Stone in 1973. “I didn’t ever want to be anything else. I’m more of a Little Richard stylist than a Jerry Lee Lewis, I think. Jerry Lee is a very intricate piano player and very skillful, but Little Richard is more of a pounder.”

One of the founders of modern rock 'n roll. A legend.

That's all folks

Signing off for tonight. Some videos and then to bed. A beer or two sounds good too.

Bright and early tomorrow - working outside and also in the garage.

Shut down the restaurants and it trickles all the way down the food chain - from the Baltimore, MD ABC affiliate:

Exterminator says he's receiving more house calls for rodent infestation since stay-at-home order was announced
Frank Simms has been busy responding to residential homes and apartments for rodent control. The owner of Q Pest Control says rats in particular are on the move.

"There’s less trash in restaurant dumpsters," said Simms. "They're going to be looking for easy meals. So they’re going into people trash cans, especially the trash cans that don’t have any lids on."

A prime example of what rodents are attracted to was in an alleyway near E. Baltimore Street and E. Conklin Street.

"This is what rodents are looking for," said Simms. "More people are staying home so they're producing more trash."

It is getting warm enough to where fleas are a problem - Bubonic Plague on top of the Wuhan Flu? Glad I do not live in a city.

Hit the spot

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The place is doing a huge business - the wait time was about an hour when I got there just before 5:00PM. Went shopping at the coop and Lowe's and came back to get my Phad Thai with Chicken. Enjoyed it by the river except there was a couple with a car who kept the engine running and loud music blasting. The music was OK but the engine was really annoying. Didn't feel like moving though...

Hummingbird feeders have been refilled. I have noticed a bunch of bees out as well so set out two of these feeders for them:

20200508-bee.jpg

I also put a bit of vaseline around where the hummingbird feeder's reservoir screws in to the base to give me a better seal - prevents capillary action from wicking the nectar out of that spot.

Short evening - tired so quick surf and then to bed. Working at home tomorrow - should be overcast but still nice. Got up to 78°F today. Full Scorpio supermoon tonight.

Let them try to arrest everyone

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Looks like civil disobedience is a thing. From Faithwire:

‘Not Asking for Permission’: Hundreds of California Churches Plan to Open May 31
Nearly 500 California pastors are preparing to open their doors on Sunday, May 31st — whether or not they have guidance from the state. 

“The churches are not asking for permission,” said Bob Tyler, a religious freedom attorney advising the pastors. “The governor is sitting here as a dictator, trumping the Constitution and is kind of hanging on to this state of emergency for as long as he can hold it.”

Good - let these tyrant wanna-be's understand that they may control the police but they do not control We The People. The Constitution spells out our liberties in very plain English.

Thai one on

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Done with the deliveries - heading North for Thai food for dinner. Food coop and Lowe's too.

Looks like some real house-cleaning is needed at the top levels of the FBI. Their actions were worse than J. Edgar Hoover at his worst. And the liberal stalwart President Obama was in the thick of it.

I could see him for President after Trump. From Disrn.com:

Ted Cruz gets haircut at Shelley Luther's Dallas salon after her release from jail
Sen. Ted Cruz made a visit to Salon à la Mode in Dallas for a haircut Friday, the day after the shop's owner, Shelley Luther, was freed by a Gov. Abbott executive order after she had been sent to jail for opening her business early.

It was a show of support from the Texas senator, as well as his first haircut in three months. Luther became emotional at one point during his visit and started to cry.

She told CBS 11 News:

"His family actually called my boyfriend and prayed for him for 20 minutes while I was in jail. To me that's not political ... that's just really nice people reaching out and making sure that our family is OK."

Her treatment was unconscionable. The judge who put her in jail is an Obama appointee. He is up for reelection in November. Door. Ass. Bang.

As the lies come to be revealed

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Love it - from CNS News:

Top Obama Officials Under Oath Told Schiff's Committee They Saw No Evidence of Trump-Russia Collusion
Although House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff (D-Calif.) repeatedly said there was strong evidence that the Trump campaign colluded with Russia to affect the 2016 election, documents released Thursday by the committee and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence reveal that the principals involved, such as former Director of National Intelligence James Clapper, told the Intelligence Committee in closed interviews in 2017 that they never saw any direct evidence of Trump-Russia collusion.

Nearly every major player in the Obama administration who was interviewed by Schiff's committee said the same thing -- no evidence of collusion.

Schiff lied. Plain and simple. Now it is time for him to pay the price.

And it starts

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Fun times ahead:

20200508-barr.jpg

No-fly by

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Was out on the deck waiting for the flyby but did not see anything. Should have been visible and I was out 20 minutes before they were scheduled but nothing...

Grocery delivery in 45 minutes - just two clients today.

And nothing happening out there

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Quiet day on the internet. Working at home today. Heading out for coffee in a few minutes.

Glorious day today - not a cloud in the sky and nice and warm. Looking forward to the fly-over this afternoon and then heading out for grocery deliveries. Wearing a Hawaiian shirt for the first time this season.

Scorpio supermoon tonight.

And that is it for now

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Still feeling sleepy though I took a two hour nap this afternoon. Long day tomorrow so early bedtime.

Looks like things are starting to unravel with the Russian Collusion fabrication - it will be fun to see these people twisting, slowly, slowly in the wind.

Gorgeous day today - got into the 70's here - same is forecast for tomorrow.

Hummingbirds are really starting to kick into high gear - I clean and refill the feeders once/week to keep down on mold (there is a fungal infection they can get from stale nectar: here, here and here) but my last refill was May 2nd (five days ago) and they are all three almost empty (each are 32 oz. feeders - big puppies - I like these) Making some more nectar tonight and will refill the feeders tomorrow.

Planning to be outside with a camera tomorrow around 1:10 or so - looks like it should be quite the fly-by. Olympia to Whidbey and then down through Seattle.

Sucks to be him. From Western Journal:

Adam Schiff Discovers He's Not in Control Anymore as Protesters Shut Him Down
Watching Rep. Adam Schiff manipulate byzantine parliamentary House rules to benefit Democrats on the Intelligence Committee is like watching a man mad with power.

The lawmaker used his power as chair of the Intelligence Committee and rules passed by his colleagues to crush Republican resistance during his committee’s time handling the impeachment inquiry against President Donald Trump.

But now, he’s been confronted by an uncomfortable truth: In the real world, there’s not a single rule he can cite to silence angry citizens.

During a town hall organized by the Armenian National Committee of America and held in Glendale, California, Schiff wasn’t able to get though more than a few minutes of his speech before being shut down by angry Americans.

He should have known it was coming — after all, the lawmaker was booed from the moment he walked across the stage at Saturday’s forum.

It took less than two minutes for shouts of “liar” to come from the crowd.

And it gets better - video at the site. You have to wonder what is running through his brain right now. He thought he had it all sewn up. He thought he had the Bad Orange Man in the bag. I feel a certain coyote/roadrunner schadenfreude.

A bit of history - Watergate

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Good to remember the magnitude of the crime (Watergate):

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Even better day today

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The coup attempt against President Trump suffered a major setback. From FOX News:

DOJ drops case against Michael Flynn, in wake of internal memo release
The Justice Department on Thursday moved to drop its case against former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, in a stunning development that comes after internal memos were released raising serious questions about the nature of the investigation that led to Flynn’s late 2017 guilty plea of lying to the FBI.

The announcement came in a court filing "after a considered review of all the facts and circumstances of this case, including newly discovered and disclosed information," as the department put it. DOJ officials said they concluded that Flynn's interview by the FBI was "untethered to, and unjustified by, the FBI's counterintelligence investigation into Mr. Flynn" and that the interview was "conducted without any legitimate investigative basis."

Later Thursday afternoon, Flynn tweeted a video of his grandson reciting The Pledge of Allegiance, along with the message, "and JUSTICE for ALL."

Good - Obama's FBI was corrupt and was breaking the law trying to get President Trump disqualified as President. First, the Russian collusion, next the impeachment telephone call and now the Wuhan Flu and economic collapse. None of these had any basis in fact.

I bet that the swamp-rats Nadler, Comey, Clapper, Brennan, Schiff and Mueller are feeling a bit nervous these days - looking over their shoulders. Smoking gun for our boy Barry.

Back home - good day

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Productive but feeling downright nappish. Got the dogs fed and watered, got the windows open and heading to bed for an hour or two.

The models were continually flawed - the UW one was over by at least ten times. Go and read this post from Kim Du Toit which links to a much longer and wonderfully detailed examination.

Quote Of The Day
From the study proving that Niall Ferguson’s Chinkvirus model contained flawed methodology (to say the least) comes this conclusion:

“On a personal level, I’d go further and suggest that all academic epidemiology be defunded. This sort of work is best done by the insurance sector. Insurers employ modellers and data scientists, but also employ managers whose job is to decide whether a model is accurate enough for real world usage and professional software engineers to ensure model software is properly tested, understandable and so on. Academic efforts don’t have these people, and the results speak for themselves.”

Hell, considering what’s come out of academia in terms of climate modeling as well as this latest fiasco, I’d prefer to have bookies produce the models, rather than universities.

And this is why charlatans like the Hockey-Stick guy (of global warming infamy) steadfastly refuse to release their code — they know it’ll fall over under the slightest scrutiny.

Had I ever tried to get this bullshit past my clients back in the day when I was involved in this kind of thing, I’d have been fired on my ass and my business cred utterly demolished. These pricks deserve no less.

It was a model derived in academia. In its original state, it was a single file with 15,000 lines of code. Stunningly bad programming practice. I am reminded of these two quotes:

"For real people, if something works in theory, but not in practice, it doesn't work. For academics, if something works in practice, but not in theory, it doesn't exist."
--Nassim Nicholas Taleb

A corollary to what Vox Day said:

In academia there is no difference between academia and the real world; in the real world there is.

And a tip 'o the chapeau to Maggie's Farm for the first quote.

Absolutely - we only have to look at the failed "hockey stick" chart of global warming to understand that the work of academics is frequently deeply flawed. There is no real-world repercussion if they are wrong.

And out the door

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Working on a few things this morning - up to the farm today.

Found on the web:

5 types of customers since the “rona”:

1) Steve:
He has been waiting for this moment his whole life. He has been drinking boilermakers since 10:00 am in his recliner and his AR is within arms reach. He has 6 months provisions in the basement and a bug out bag due west buried in the woods. Steve demands a handshake as I give him his package. He’s sizing me up as I deliver his ammo.

Steve will survive this, and he will kill you if he needs to.

2) Brad:
He is standing at his window wearing skinny jeans and a Patagonia t-shirt. He is mad because there were no organic tomatoes at Whole Foods today. He points at the ground where he has taped a 6 ft no go zone line from his porch. I leave his case of Fuji water, organic granola bites, and his new “Bernie Bro” hat at the tape.

Brad will not survive.
Steve will probably eat him.

3) Nancy:
She has sprayed everything with Thieves oil. Bought all the Clorox wipes, hand sanitizer, toilet paper, meat, and bread from the local grocery chain. She has quarantined her kids and sprays them with a mixture of thieves, lavender, & mint essential oils daily. She has posted every link known to man about “The Rona” on her social media. She will spray you if you break the 6 ft rule. I will leave her yet another case of toilet paper.

She will last longer than Brad, but not Steve.

4) Karen:
She has called everybody and read them the latest news on “The Rona”. She asked for the manager at Food Lion, Walmart, Publix, McDonalds, Chik-Fil-A, and Vons all before noon demanding more toilet paper. Karen’s kids are currently faking “The Rona” to avoid her. I’m delivering “Hello kitchen” to her.

Karen will not survive longer than Brad.

5) Mary:
Is sitting in the swing watching her kids have a water balloon fight in the front yard as she is on her fourth glass of wine. She went to the store and bought 2 cases of pop tarts, 6 boxes of cereal, 8 bags of pizza rolls, And a 6 roll pack of toilet paper. There is a playlist of Bob Marley, Pink Floyd, and Post Malone playing in the background. I’m bringing her second shipment of 15 bottles of wine in 3 days.

Mary will survive and marry Steve.
Together they will repopulate the earth.

May God have mercy on us all.

Awwww cute - old monsters

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Sweet little video:

Tip of the hat to James Gurney for the link

I love this - from Ace of Spades:

Missouri Informants Who Snitched on Fellow Citizens For Violating Stay-At-Home Orders Surprised To Learn That Their Snitching is Subject to Open Records Laws
I think this phenomenon of people rushing to play the role of Uncompensated Volunteer Informant for the state is closely related to the Surveillance Society that social media has bequeathed us, with everyone eager to "call out" and "cancel" other fellow human beings.

Fuck these people. If they feel threatened -- good. If they resent the all-seeing eyes of the Panopticon -- good.

Enjoy the hell you made, brick by miserable, hateful brick.

Residents in Missouri were encouraged to snitch on businesses that broke Gov. Mike Parson's (R) stay-at-home orders. A website and email address were launched so residents could anonymously report non-essential businesses being open. What residents didn't expect, however, was for their personal information to be released.
Under Missouri's Sunshine Law, members of the public can access records and meetings. Jared Totsch decided to file a Sunshine Law request. When he received the information, he shared the information on Facebook.

“Here ya go. The gallery of snitches, busybodies, and employees who rat out their own neighbors and employers over the Panic-demic," the Facebook post stated.

...

Totsch was unapologetic, especially for those employees who may lose their job for turning in their employers.

"I'd call it poetic justice, instant Karma, a dose of their own medicine," he said. "What goes around, comes around. They are now experiencing the same pain that they themselves helped to inflict on those they filed complaints against."

Love it Love it Love it - perfect response and everyone gets to find out who the neighborhood Gestapo are.
Karen unavailable for comment.

Why did it take so long for President Obama to endorse Joe Biden in his run for President. He knows something. Is it this?
From The Daily Caller:

‘There Could Be A Smoking Gun’ — Rand Paul Says He Thinks Obama Knew About Biden, Ukraine Issues
Republican Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul told Fox News’ Ed Henry on Wednesday that he believes that former President Barack Obama may be trying to hide a possible “smoking gun” on Hunter Biden’s business overseas.

“Why do you think Barack Obama is weighing in, do you fear there’s something they’re trying to hide here?” Henry asked.

“Yeah, there’s been rumors for quite a while that people within the Obama Administration knew about the corruption problems with Hunter Biden, that they warned the vice president and maybe even the president about it,” the senator responded.

“I think that there could be a smoking gun, that there’s actually a record of some of these complaints that were going on at the time.”

Heh - the November 3rd election is still a ways off - 190 days or so. The next couple of months are going to be really interesting - I bet President Trump and his people have each and every day scheduled for taking down the deep state.
This is President Trump's kind of game and I bet he is going to eviscerate the Democrats so hard they will not know what hit them. Democrats are playing checkers and Trump is playing 3D Chess.

They are fortunate to have such incredibly competent managers - from the Los Angeles Times:

New cost details emerge in California’s secretive coronavirus masks deal with Chinese company
Advisors to Gov. Gavin Newsom agreed to pay Chinese electric car manufacturer BYD $3.30 for each mask the company made under a coronavirus response contract totaling almost $1 billion that has been kept under seal for the past month.

But invoices, emails and other documents obtained by The Times suggest the deal was still in the process of being vetted by state officials when Newsom suggested it was complete during a national TV broadcast on April 7.

The price per mask was revealed in a document provided by the California state treasurer’s office, which was responsible for the release of the funds. However, it lists only the sale of coveted N95 masks, those considered to provide the most protection, and not the cost of traditional surgical masks BYD has also sold to the state.

And why this is not such a good idea?

Sergio Fernandez de Cordova, the chairman of a New York media nonprofit group that is working with the government consulting firm Raymond Associates to secure better mask deals for government agencies...

He said with the amount of money California can muster, the state could have propped up its own factories in the state, employed Californians out of work and made large quantities of similar masks for “easily under a dollar.”

“The state could have launched 190 new companies around this,” Fernandez de Cordova said. “Pandemic times lead to pandemic decisions, which are not usually well thought out.”

DOH! Stupid bureaucrat - they probably get all hot and bothered when they receive emails from Nigerian Princes. And they have the gall to ask the Federal government for a handout. That is our tax dollars. Let them sit and stew in their own messes - they screwed it up, let them deal with it.

Points North - dinner

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Chinese take-out for dinner and then shop at the food coop. Back in a couple hours.

Farm tomorrow - looks like it is going to be a gorgeous day.

An interesting story - Venezuela

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No second source of corroboration but still, it sounds quite plausible. From Connecting Vets:

Ex-Green Berets tried to recruit this vet for a failed coup. Now he's speaking out.
"Did you watch the Jack Ryan show last night? Like what are we doing here?" asked a veteran of the war in Afghanistan when several ex-Green Berets attempted to recruit him to help launch a coup in Venezuela.

It was the summer of 2019, and three Army buddies working for a Florida based security company were making preparations in Jamaica. The story of the coup attempt was first reported by the Associated Press.

The Afghanistan veteran, who spoke to Connecting Vets on the condition of anonymity, received phone calls from a friend. Down in Jamaica, Special Forces veteran Jordan Goudreau, CEO of Silvercorp USA, had already brought on board two other ex-Green Berets and former teammates, Airan Berry and Luke Denman. Together, the three had all served together in 10th Special Forces Group's Crisis Response Force (CRF) known as C-1-10.

Much more at the site - looks like they were trying to take Maduro down but the whole operation sounds like a gigantic fustercluck of epic proportions to me. I am sure that more will trickle out over the next six months or so. This is not the way to run a revolution.

And out - grocery deliveries

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Got four today. Back in a couple of hours. Heading North for Chinese food for dinner tonight.

A good point - Area 51

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A reall good point - lots of "interesting" stuff that has not been declassified:

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Whenever I hear about "great new ideas" for teaching, I am reminded of these numbers:

cato_education.jpg

It comes from page two of this PDF report: State Education Trends - Academic Performance and Spending over the Past 40 Years by the CATO Institute.

A lot of what you are seeing is all of the administrative overhead that has been added, the cost of all the diversity programs, the cost of the Vice Principles, the additional support staff. We do not need these many people educating our children. This has become a make-work program for all of the non-essential workers with Education degrees. Blame the teachers unions as well - they are mandating increased hiring without any bearing on how the children perform.

The numbers simply do not lie.

Title of the post? The great Kinks song. Video here.

Unreal - the fad of Common Core in education is probably one of the stupidist ideas ever foisted off on parents and their children. Looks good on paper but the test results show it failing every single time. From the Office of the Governor of New York:

Amid Ongoing COVID-19 Pandemic, Governor Cuomo Announces Collaboration with Gates Foundation to Develop a Blueprint to Reimagine Education in the New Normal
Amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that New York State is collaborating with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to develop a blueprint to reimagine education in the new normal. As New York begins to develop plans to reopen K-12 schools and colleges, the state and the Gates Foundation will consider what education should look like in the future, including:

    • How can we use technology to provide more opportunities to students no matter where they are;
    • How can we provide shared education among schools and colleges using technology;
    • How can technology reduce educational inequality, including English as a new language students;
    • How can we use technology to meet educational needs of students with disabilities;
    • How can we provide educators more tools to use technology;
    • How can technology break down barriers to K-12 and Colleges and Universities to provide greater access to high quality education no matter where the student lives; and
    • Given ongoing socially distancing rules, how can we deploy classroom technology, like immersive cloud virtual classrooms learning, to recreate larger class or lecture hall environments in different locations?

Typical progressive bullshit. They are doing something that sounds good instead of looking at it and doing something that actually DOES good. No thought given to unintended consequences of their actions and they are going to create a generation of dummies.

New York being New York - from Legal Insurrection:

Cuomo: Out-of-State Health Care Workers Came to New York to Help Now Subject to NY State Income Tax
Thousands of health care workers headed Cuomo’s call for help and volunteered to go to New York to help amid the COVID-19 pandemic. New York was hit particularly hard. Now, those that spent more than 14 days in the Empire State will be required to pay state income tax, even if they’re being paid by entities in other states for their work in New York.

To think that people were floating the idea of Gov. Cuomo as President. I appreciate that he is thinking of the bottom line of his state but sheesh - show a little mercy now and then...

The economy - payroll

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A sobering metric - the final numbers are going to be bad. From CNBC:

US private payrolls drop by 20.2 million in April, the worst job loss in the history of ADP report
Private payrolls hemorrhaged more than 20 million jobs in April as companies sliced workers amid a coronavirus-induced shutdown that took most of the U.S. economy offline, according to a report Wednesday from ADP.

In all, the decline totaled 20,236,000 — easily the worst loss in the survey’s history going back to 2002 but not as bad as the 22 million that economists surveyed by Dow Jones had been expecting. The previous record was 834,665 in February 2009 amid the financial crisis and accompanying Great Recession.

We will recover - these things happen every so often and it did not help that the Democrats used this crisis to try to acquire more power and to crash the system.

Now would actually be a great time to invest in a simple index fund - Vanguard 500 or some such...

Outta here - coffee and mail box

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Working at home - paying bills, some cleaning and maybe a bit of welding.

Grocery deliveries this afternoon.

Florian Schneider? Co-founder of Kraftwerk - from The Guardian:

Florian Schneider, Kraftwerk co-founder, dies aged 73
Florian Schneider, who as one of the founding members of German group Kraftwerk changed the sound of pop music forever, has died aged 73 of cancer.

Some history:

After three albums with Hütter in the mid-70s, Kraftwerk released Autobahn and expanded to a quartet. The album was composed primarily on synthesisers, and its highly original sound and witty lyrics made it a hit, reaching the Top 5 in the UK and US.

Adding ever-more sophisticated synthesisers and drum machines, and with Hütter’s distinctive vocals, the group went on to release a series of albums that became hugely influential on pop music, particularly the four-album run of Radio-Activity (1975), Trans-Europe Express (1977), The Man-Machine (1978) and Computer World (1981). They described their music as industrielle volksmusik: “folk music of the factories”, as translated by David Bowie.

As well as being forefathers of the synthpop that would dominate the 1980s and beyond, the title track of Trans-Europe Express was sampled in 1982 by Afrika Bambaataa & the Soul Sonic Force for one of the earliest hip-hop hits, Planet Rock, while Computer World was hugely influential on the house and techno music that emerged from Chicago and Detroit that decade.

Their work also brought them into the orbit of the Berlin-dwelling Bowie and Iggy Pop – in a TV documentary, Pop recalled that he and Schneider once went shopping for asparagus together. Bowie’s track V-2 Schneider is thought to be a tribute to him.

Really good music and very influential to other musicians. Listened to them a lot - still do. Their use of synthesizer was not the cliche beeps and boops that many other musicians do. They understood the nuances of the instrument.

People are getting fed up - from the Wisconsin State Journal:

Conservative justices appear skeptical of 'safer at home' extension
The state Supreme Court’s conservative justices on Tuesday expressed deep skepticism about the authority of a cabinet secretary to extend Gov. Tony Evers’ “safer at home” order for controlling the spread of COVID-19, the disease caused by the new coronavirus.

And the money shot from Justice Rebecca Bradley:

“My question for you is, where in the Constitution did the people of Wisconsin confer authority on a single, unelected cabinet secretary to compel almost 6 million people to stay at home and close their businesses and face imprisonment if they don’t comply, with no input from the Legislature, without the consent of the people?” Bradley asked.

“Isn’t it the very definition of tyranny for one person to order people to be imprisoned for going to work, among other ordinarily lawful activities?”

She has a point. Tip of the hat to Don Surber.

A wonderful evening

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Two hours of thunder and lightning. Sat outside under the porch watching for quite a while.

Woke up at 6:00AM to it pouring down buckets. Rolled over for another 90 minutes. The skies are clearing now.

Knew it. Thunder

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UPDATE at bottom

I knew that the weather pattern was unstable and something had been brewing since I got home this afternoon.

Been hearing thunder for the last few minutes - not Navy jets, quite different.

UPDATE: Saw a flash - getting closer. Heading outside for a bit. I love a good thunderstorm and they are so rare here, I cherish them when they happen.

And to all, a good night

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Long day so early bedtime - videos first.

Clouds are really starting to build - nothing "interesting" on the forecast except for rain tonight and tomorrow morning.

Might do some welding tomorrow - got a bunch of chores done. Time for a fun project.

Hit them where it hurts - the source of their hard currency. From Bloomberg:

India Pledges Easy Access to Land for Factories Leaving China
India is developing a land pool nearly double the size of Luxembourg to lure businesses moving out of China, according to people with the knowledge of the matter.

A total area of 461,589 hectares has been identified across the country for the purpose, the people said, asking not to be identified because they aren’t authorized to speak to the media. That includes 115,131 hectares of existing industrial land in states such as Gujarat, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh, they said. Luxembourg is spread across 243,000 hectares, according to the World Bank.

Land has been one of the biggest impediments for companies looking to invest in India, with the plans of Saudi Aramco to Posco frustrated by delays in acquisition. Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s administration is working with state governments to change that as investors seek to reduce reliance on China as a manufacturing base in the aftermath of the coronavirus outbreak and the resultant supply disruption.

Perfect move - want to build a factory? Here - here are the keys to your new industrial site. India is being very very smart. I love that they are taking over the pharmaceutical business from China.

From the Michigan branch of National Public Radio:

White House Coronavirus Task Force To Wind Down
The White House's coronavirus task force will wind down its work around Memorial Day, Vice President Mike Pence told reporters on Tuesday.

"I think we're starting to look at the Memorial Day window, early June window as a time when we could begin to transition back to having our agencies ... begin to manage our national response in a more traditional manner," Pence said.

He said the task force has already begun to talk about a transition plan with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and that the White House intends to keep coronavirus coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx "every bit as long as we need to."

Good - we are on the downhill slope so it is time to close that bureaucracy, send its people home and get back to work again. Definitely keep an eye out for future pandemics as well as go through and get the individual cities and states better prepared (something they need to pay for themselves - they have already had their fair measure of our taxpayer dollars).

Party's over - time to go home.

Hmmmm - RBG

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She is 86 and has been in poor health. From The Supreme Court of the United States:

For Immediate Release
Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg was admitted to Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland, last night after experiencing chills and fever earlier in the day. She was initially evaluated at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington, D.C. before being transferred to Johns Hopkins Hospital for further evaluation and treatment of any possible infection. With intravenous antibiotics and fluids, her symptoms have abated and she expects to be released from the hospital as early as Sunday morning. Further updates will be made when available.

She could have retired during BHOs administration and the Dems would have railroaded through a suitable replacement. Probably counting in Hillary to win. Silly girl - out of touch with We The People.

Dinner time

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Was thinking of heading out for Chinese but been driving too much today already. Big salad and maybe a can of soup or something.

New racks cleaned up just fine and they will look great in their new home. Using one for the music equipment, one chopped up and welded into the synthesizer stand for more music equipment and the last one for general electronics and ham radio stuff. Was planning to put the radio equipment in the loft upstairs but it fits better in the garage - put all of the electronics there. My photo/video computer is in the loft and that is enough. It is a nice place to hang out and want to keep it fairly empty and uncluttered. I also use that as my office and pay bills there.

Back to work

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Break over - ran long. Unpack the truck and hose off the racks.

Weather still looks very unsettled - forecast calls for two days of rain but I am guessing a squall and then it will blow over.

Nice to start getting the music stuff put back together so I can play again. Miss that a lot... Planning on being here for quite some time so getting it set up just-so.

Have had to deal with all ten

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Great list of manipulation techniques:

  1. The Constant Victim - This kind of individual will always finds a way to end up as a victim in their relationships.
  2. One-Upmanship Expert – This person uses put downs, snide remarks and criticisms, to show that they’re superior, and know much more than you.
  3. Powerful Dependents – They hide behind the mask of being weak and powerless – then use their helplessness to dominate relationships. That is, they send the subtle message “you must not let me down.
  4. Triangulators – This person tries to get other people on their side. They’re quick to put you down, and to say some nasty things. They separate good friends or drive a wedge in families.
  5. The Blasters – They blast you with their anger or they blow up suddenly. That stops you asking questions - in case there’s a showdown.
  6. The Projector – This person thinks they’re perfect and others have the flaws. They take no ownership – because they’re never, ever wrong.
  7. The Deliberate Mis-Interpreter – They seem like a nice person – but they twist and use your words. They spread misinformation and misinterpret you. Thus, they deliberately present you in a false, negative way.
  8. The Flirt – This person uses flirting to get their way in life. They want to be admired and to have an audience. However, your feelings and your needs are of no concern to them.
  9. The Iron Fist – They use intimidation and throw their weight around, to use you for their ends, and to get their way in life.
  10. The Multiple Offender – This person uses several of the techniques we’ve described – and they’ll often switch between them if it suits their purposes.

Some of them are so blatent it is almost a self-parody but they are serious. From My Pensive

If only:

20200505-ramirez.jpg

Did everything I wanted to. Picked up the racks from the auction house. It was a bit early for a hamburger so skipped that and went to Trader Joe's and got my sesame oil, Triple Ginger Snaps, fresh green peas and a few other essentials, then to Lowe's - this was a new branch for me and it is huge and close to the Costco Business center so a place to consider if I need something that the Mt. Vernon store does not stock.

Went to the Costco and only saw a few packages of the San Marzano tomatoes - about a dozen - these were scattered around a bit. Got half of them and then checked at the front desk after I bought them. That item is scheduled for deletion. Noooooooooooooooooooooo... Looks like it was a test purchase and for some reason, the trolls in accounting did not see fit to continue stocking this. Damn. Those are really good tomatoes.

Had lunch at Chick-fil-a near the Lowe's. Taking a break and will unload the van. The racks are a bit dirty so hose them off outside. Weather for the next 24 hours looks really unsettled but this weekend is forecast to be amazing.

Not surprised at all - diet

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From The London Daily Mail:

Eating meat may IMPROVE mental health and one in three vegetarians are depressed, study suggests
A vegetarian or vegan diet may be increasing the likelihood of depression, a US-based study suggests.

People with a plant-based diet were twice as likely to take prescription drugs for mental illness and nearly three times as likely to contemplate suicide.

The report, which looked at more than 160,000 people, also found that a shocking one in three vegetarians suffer from depression or anxiety.

160,000 is a good sample size - they are not going to have to argue their findings.

There are some health benefits to a veggie diet - I am about 80% veggie and 20% carnivore. Still, studies like this really point out the strong links between diet and mental health.

Points South

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Heading out - coffee and then I-5 Southbound. Stop off at the auction house, the business Costco, Trader Joe's and then back home.

Might get lunch at Kidd Valley - there is one near the auction house and they do a really good burger and shake.

Back in a couple of hours...

Two stories from Newsweek

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The headlines are all you need:

April 28th, 2020: DR. FAUCI BACKED CONTROVERSIAL WUHAN LAB WITH MILLIONS OF U.S. DOLLARS FOR RISKY CORONAVIRUS RESEARCH

May 4th, 2020: DR. FAUCI DISMISSES WUHAN LAB AS SOURCE OF CORONAVIRUS, CONTRADICTING TRUMP AND POMPEO

Of course Fauci is not going to blame the Wuhan lab - that is his baby. They would not let him do this work in the USA so he outsourced to China. We know what kind of quality they are capable of...

Cute - If life gives you...

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20200405-lemons.jpg

From BizPac Review:

Judicial Watch files FOIA lawsuit for Dr. Fauci and WHO communication records
Judicial Watch announced today that it filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) lawsuit on behalf of the Daily Caller News Foundation against the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) for communications and other records of National Institute of Allergies and Infectious Diseases Director Anthony Fauci and Deputy Director H. Clifford Lane with and about the World Health Organization (WHO) concerning the novel coronavirus (Daily Caller News Foundation v. U.S. Department Justice (No. 1:20-cv-01149)).

The suit was filed after HHS failed to respond to an April 1, 2020, FOIA request seeking:

    • Communications between Dr. Fauci and Deputy Director Lane and World Health Organization officials concerning the novel coronavirus.
    • Communications of Dr. Fauci and Deputy Director Lane concerning WHO, WHO official Bruce Aylward, WHO Director General Tedros Anhanom, and China.

The time period for the request is January 1, 2020 to April 1, 2020.

Additionally, the DCNF requested and was granted expedited processing of its request.

They may just be on a fishing trip but there is a lot happening under the surface so I am sure they will catch something big and interesting.

That's it for today

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Long long day tomorrow so getting an early bedtime.

A big milepost - Inkscape 1.0

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After about fifteen years, they finally released version 1.0 - from their blog:

Introducing Inkscape 1.0
After a little over three years in development, the team is excited to launch the long awaited Inkscape 1.0 into the world.

Built with the power of a team of volunteers, this open source vector editor represents the work of many hearts and hands from around the world, ensuring that Inkscape remains available free for everyone to download and enjoy.

In fact, translations for over 20 languages were updated for version 1.0, making the software more accessible to people from all over the world.

Use it a lot for vector editing for graphic design, cutting stencils and CNC. They added a lot of new features and tools with this release - very cool. Download here.

From Walmart:

Walmart Hires 200,000 Associates and Pays $180 Million in Early Associate Bonuses
By Donna Morris, Chief People Officer
We’ve seen firsthand our associates’ unwavering focus to take care of customers and members while providing a vital service to communities during this time. In this unprecedented period of time, we have made several commitments focused on our associates and wanted to provide an update on our progress.

Recognizing the hard work ahead of our associates as COVID-19 spreads and to help provide more cash in hand for them sooner, we shared plans to accelerate the payout for our quarterly incentive, which store, club and supply chain associates received today. With this, we paid nearly $180 million in cash bonuses to hourly associates, with more to come next month on our originally scheduled quarterly bonus payout date. This is in addition to the special cash bonus for all U.S. hourly associates earlier this month, which was $300 for full-time hourly and $150 for part-time hourly, a total of more than $365 million paid to our associates.

In addition, we’ve fulfilled our commitment to hire 200,000 associates in our stores, clubs, distribution centers and fulfillment centers, since March 19. We are humbled to be able to give an opportunity to so many Americans to work, often serving as a bridge for employment, while helping Walmart better serve customers during this time of increased demand.

I love Donna's title: Chief People Officer - none of this Human Resources bullshit. Real people putting other people to work. This will cost them money up front but they will gain a completely faithful worker base. This is how you run a large company.

Three times in a row

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God but that was delicious. Really hit the spot. Ahi tuna came out just right - great flavor and mouth-feel. Rice, bok choy and some salsa. Simple but a perfect combination.

Having a beer or two for desert. Sitting here planning tomorrow. Picking up my auction swag at the north end of Lake Washington near the town of Kenmore. Also planning to hit the Costco Business Center to stock up on more of the San Marzano canned tomatoes. Checked and there is a Trader Joe's near the Costco - hitting that too. They have a toasted sesame oil that is world's better than most. Really flavorful. Also jonesing on their Triple Ginger Snaps a lot and need to acquire a couple packages of them.

Need to run to the farm on Thursday - take care of something up there. Busy week.

And dinnertime

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Rice is cooked. Time for a quick steam of the bok choy, sear the ahi and dinner is served.

Cooled off quite a bit - clouded over so not eating outside tonight.

A taste of one island enjoyed on another island.

Very cool - thank you Ireland

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A truly wonderful gesture - from Yahoo/The Telegraph:

Irish dig deep to support virus-hit native Americans, repaying 150-year-old debt
Donations to native American tribes who have been badly hit by the coronavirus crisis are flooding in from Ireland as they repay a debt dating back to the 19th-century potato famine.

At least 41 people have fallen victim to Covid-19 in the Navajo nation, with the spike in cases partly attributed to a water crisis. An estimated 40 percent of the Navajo do not have running water at home, and a drought in the south-west has exacerbated the difficulties.  

As the crisis intensified, the Navajo and Hopi families set up a GoFundMe campaign to raise cash to pay for bottled water.

Already more than $1.3 million has been raised with donations flooding in from Ireland. The generosity dates back to a gesture made in March 1847 when the Choctaw Tribe, which was gradually re-establishing itself in Oklahoma having been ousted from its ancestral lands in Mississippi, heard news of the Irish Potato Famine across the Atlantic.

Meeting in a building in Skullyville, Oklahoma, the Choctaw were asked to dig deep for people thousands of miles away they had never met. They did, and donations poured in.

Now, 173 years later, the gesture has been repaid with donors from Ireland opening their wallets to help.

Just wow. More at the site. Thank you so very much! This is who we are. Not the politicians. This is humanity.

Would never live there - fun to visit a long time ago but no place to live. The city has not improved. From Breitbart:

Manhattan Derailed: Neglected Subways Cause Problems for New York amid Pandemic
The filthy, homeless-ridden New York City subway system is stumbling into the spotlight as the Chinese coronavirus crisis keeps New Yorkers mostly inside their homes and businesses closed.

On Thursday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) announced that the city’s Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) would get a deep cleaning every night about two months after the first case of coronavirus was confirmed in the state.

Cuomo provided no specific explanation as to why the action was taken so late into the city’s battle with the coronavirus.

Riders have foisted unprecedented changes onto the MTA in the last two months — including drastic declines in ridership as New Yorkers have been ordered to stay home since March 6 by Mayor Bill de Blasio (D) and increasing use of the subway among the city’s roughly 70,000 homeless residents.

Weeks ago, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) economist Jeffrey Harris, who is also a physician, released a study detailing how the MTA helped vastly spread the coronavirus in the early weeks of March.

And of course:

A month later, about midway through April, New York City has become the epicenter of the coronavirus in the United States.

Close to 80 MTA workers have died of the coronavirus as of April 20, and a conservative Democrat on the New York City Council, Councilman Robert Holden, has asked that MTA services be halted. Three other councilmembers signed on to the letter.

Much more at the site. Piss poor management. No other explanation.

The last supper would have been quite different:

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Deep Fake - Hairy Legs

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The Biden Campaign song:

Someone had a lot of fun. Tip of the hat to Vanderleun.

The internet is still dry

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Back home - just two deliveries today but big ones.

Surfed for a quick bit and nothing major happening - slow news day.

Getting rice going for dinner - ahi is in some ginger/shoyu/sugar marinade. Sear it on a hot griddle. White rice and steamed bok choy with oyster sauce. Perfection.

The internet is dry

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There is nothing happening out there.

Lunch break - heading out in 30 minutes to deliver groceries.

Getting the van ready for tomorrow - picking up my auction swag.

And meanwhile - CNN

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Fake News personified:

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Lest we not forget

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And out for a little while

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Coffee and the usual. Working at home today on a bunch of small projects plus bill paying. Grocery deliveries later this afternoon.

Heading down south to pick up my auction swag tomorrow.

Back around lunchtime - no clue as to what to do for dinner tonight. Maybe some Ahi tuna with rice - eat Hawaiian style.

Thanks Governor Newsom

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Must be wonderful to live in California - from the Los Angeles ABC affiliate:

High-risk sex offender rearrested days after controversial release from OC Jail
A high-risk registered sex offender was arrested Thursday for allegedly exposing himself at a parole resource center, just two weeks after a controversial early release from the Orange County Jail.

Seven inmates who were deemed high-risk sex offenders were released early in April by a court commissioner, triggering criticism and warnings from county law enforcement officials who said the release was not necessary because the jails were not overcrowded.

One of them was Rudy William Grajeda Magdaleno, who was released April 13 after serving 71 days in jail on a 180-day minimum sentence. Officials say he has an extensive criminal history including convictions for robbery, narcotics possession, criminal threats and child annoyance.

Santa Ana police say Magdaleno was at a parole resource center on April 17 when he exposed himself to staff members there. He had also failed to charge his GPS monitor and the device had stopped tracking him the day before.

They didn't want him to catch the Chinese flu in jail so they let him go. That he willfully failed to recharge his tracker makes this premeditated. WA State tried to release the Green River murderer on the same premise.

This is disgusting - from Breitbart:

Congressman: Nancy Pelosi Blocking Investigation into Chinese Coronavirus Origins, Tax Money to Wuhan Lab
Rep. Guy Reschenthaler (R-PA) told Breitbart News this weekend that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi would rather investigate President Donald Trump again than focus on the actual origins of the Chinese coronavirus and U.S. tax dollars that went to the Wuhan Institute of Virology from which intelligence officials increasingly believe the virus leaked.

Appearing on Breitbart News Saturday on SiriusXM 125 the Patriot Channel, Reschenthaler discussed his efforts to investigate tax dollars that flowed through a New York firm to the Wuhan lab. He said that Pelosi and House Democrats are not interested in holding the Chinese Communist Party accountable and, instead, want to focus their oversight efforts on politically harming President Trump again just like they tried and failed with the partisan impeachment last year and earlier this year.

“We should have an investigative body looking at these grants, but Nancy Pelosi is not going to do that,” Reschenthaler said. “So you have myself and House Republicans. I can tell you I’m going to continue to look into these grants. I’m going to continue to look into the Department of Homeland Security as well to see what grants are going from there to China. I’m also looking at defunding the World Health Organization and we can talk about that as well. But the bottom line of the Democrats’ behavior is this: They hate this president so badly that they would rather side with the Chinese Communist Party than defend Americans and defend our spending and spend wisely and just be honest. That is their hatred for President Trump and disdain for President Trump’s supporters.”

These people are not doing their job. They were elected to serve their constituency. They swore an oath of office to defend and uphold our Constitution. Time to get their replacements.

Nope - none at all. Hollywood stunt actress Zoë Bell has some fun with her friends:

Had me smiling if not outright laughing through the whole five minutes. I love the little "Easter Eggs" for their roles.

Two wonderful dinners in a row.

The tri-tip came out perfect. Happy that I did the mashed Yukon Golds instead of the bakers. Did  a bed of coarsely mashed 'taters, sliced the beef on top of them (reserving a few pieces for the quality control team) and topped with the pan sauce. A big pat of compound butter on top and it was pure heaven. The day got nice and warm and dry so sat outside saying hi to the neighbors - near to low tide so they are walking the beach.

Going to have to get a burger tomorrow at McDonalds just to reset my tastebuds. Can't eat gourmet every day now can we?

The Modern Prometheus is the second half of the title of the story that Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley wrote in 1816 - the one titled: Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus. Let us not forget the history of Prometheus from Greek Mythology. He was the god who gave mankind fire but who was punished for this by Zeus and spends the rest of eternity chained to a mountain and has an eagle eat his liver. At night (the gods are immortal), the liver grows back so his torture is a daily event. (and I am grossly simplifying here - the myths are epic in scope and some incredible reading)

What made me think of this was the following paragraph:

To examine the emergence potential (that is, the potential to infect humans) of circulating bat CoVs, we built a chimeric virus encoding a novel, zoonotic CoV spike protein — from the RsSHCO14-CoV sequence that was isolated from Chinese horseshoe bats — in the context of the SARS-CoV mouse-adapted backbone.

This text is from a paper submitted by a research team, since withdrawn. The team was working at the lab in Wuhan. This is part of the documents that were leaked a few days ago.

Source materials:

And the people managing the response?

China is going to pay big-time for this. They screwed up. Get your cheap geek gadgets now 'cause prices and availability are going to get really bad really soon.

Sure feels like that...

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I thought that 2019 was bad - here we go:

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Sadly - true

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So true - a great rant about how we need to just grow up. From Tom Luongo writing at Gold Goats 'N Guns:

We Have Become Karen Nation
A week ago, I didn’t know what a ‘Karen’ was. Today I can’t stop seeing Karens everywhere I look. It’s like that moment in They Live! when Nada puts on the glasses for the first time.

The problem now is I can’t take the glasses off.

And I’m not the only one. In recent weeks the failed Karen meme of a few years ago has returned with a vengeance as people realize just how much damage Karens have done to our society.

A Karen is a person, usually a woman, who is never satisfied with the service she’s receiving and demands to talk to the manager. It doesn’t matter if Karen’s complaints are valid or not.

This is because Karen has been incentivized by cowardly corporate officers and government officials (but, I repeat myself) to get something she doesn’t deserve simply because they want her to shut up and not disturb everyone else.

It was one thing to indulge Karen her entitled behavior when she was getting a free order of fries or month of cable. It’s quite another when Karens become the State’s target audience for public policy.

A bit more:

Karens, at heart, are simply spoiled children who have never had boundaries properly set. A little power creates a self-reinforcing feedback loop.

Progressives are the ultimate Karens, never satisfied with having moved society in a terrible direction through their constant complaining. Never once do they self-reflect that maybe they’ve been wrong and all of their demands have made things materially worse rather than us not having indulged them enough.

Progressives are the worst winners I’ve ever met. They’ve won every political battle of note for the past 100+ years and are still whining in their lattes about us electing Trump, whose presidency they’ve destroyed with their incessant Karen-isms and his inherent weakness.

So is is any surprise that we’ve reached a point where the government is more worried about keeping the Karens from complaining than actually governing effectively?

An excellent rant - much more at the site. Tip of the hat to Vanderleun for the link.
He always finds the really good stuff...

And break time

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Plan B for dinner. Planning to do a pan sauce with the beef (a kinda/sorta red-wine bordelaise (not the New Orleans garlic abomination)) as well as some flavored butter (sauté some italian parsley, wee bit of celery leaf, black pepper and garlic - chilled and compounded). Baked potato? No way. Doing some mashed Yukon Golds instead.

Nothing out there

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Surfed from one end of the internet to the other and nothing  catches my eye. Pennance for shrugging off chores this morning.

Tri-tip is in the water bath, time to start some laundry and fire up the vaccuum cleaner. Temps are rising into the low 60's so never built that fire - got the doors and some windows open airing the house out. Nice to get some fresh air.

Try surfing again in a couple of hours...

Break for lunch

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Went out anyway - Lowe's return desk was pretty fast and I wanted to get some groceries from the food co-op. Nice broccoli to go with the baked potato and steak. Got the sous-vide machine plugged in and warming up. Three hours at 140°F followed by a ripping hot sear and it will be perfect.

Turned into a nice day - gorgeous for a drive which is why I headed North after coffee. Plus, I can avoid cleaning the house and paying bills. For a few hours.

Out to face the day

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Coffee, etc... Heading to Lowe's to return the shelf hardware tomorrow - no need to deal with the weekend crowds.

Small projects around the house today - laundry, bills, cleaning, etc...

Thaw out some Tri-tip and sous vide that for dinner tonight. Baked potato and a salad sounds great. Patchy clouds but cold and windy so building a fire when I get back home.

I do not live one state to the South - a two-fer.

First, from The Gateway Pundit:

Oregon Gov. Kate Brown Extends Lockdown to JULY 6 Despite Ranking 40th on State Coronavirus List with 104 Deaths in State of 4 Million!
Several states reopened at least partially on Friday May 1st after the six-week-long Fauci lockdown.

But Democrat-led Oregon is not one of them.

Oregon, a state with 4.14 million residents did not reopen on Friday.

In fact, the liberal state is not reopening anytime soon.

Far Left Oregon Governor Kate Brown is extending the state’s lockdown until JULY 6th!

And then they will try to raise taxes to cover the shortfall because of the businesses being closed. Just say no.

And second? From Gateway Pundit again:

Oregon DHS Announces Plan to Confiscate Children if Foster Parents Test Positive for Coronavirus and Deemed Unable to Provide for Them
On April 22nd the state initiated a plan to remove children from foster homes if one of the parents comes down with coronavirus.

The state of Oregon will remove the children and place them with “sustitute care” if the parents are deemed unable to support them.

This law was actually published online on the Oregon Department of Human Services website.

Disgusting. Human Services indeed.

True words from Mike Rowe

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They really see us this way - from the Washington Examiner:

Mike Rowe: There is no such thing as a nonessential worker
Former Dirty Jobs host Mike Rowe spoke out this week about the “other” victims of the coronavirus and argued, "there is no such thing as a nonessential worker.”

"Most of the country is going to come through this with the realization we're being treated like children ... by people who want us to look at them as parents," Rowe said during an interview with Glenn Beck on the Blaze.

"In an economy like this, when you take 26 million 'nonessential' workers out of the equation ... the whole thing collapses under its own weight," he said. "I would suggest to you right now that there is no such thing as a nonessential worker when it comes to the economy," Rowe added in response to certain workers being deemed "nonessential" during the virus crisis and not allowed to work.

Rowe touched on a sentiment that has been growing across the country in places such as California and Michigan, where residents have started pushing back against coronavirus lockdowns they believe to be draconian and calls for states to allow people back to work have been intensifying.

Being treated like children and We The People are getting damned sick of it. Time for a change.

Classic case for using the line from Hamlet. From The Hill:

Whitmer says Michigan protests 'depicted some of the worst racism and awful parts of our history'
Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D) said protests inside the state capitol last week, featuring demonstrators with assault weapons, swastikas and Confederate flags, depicted some of the “worst racism and awful parts” of the nation’s history.

“Some of the outrageousness of what happened at our capitol depicted some of the worst racism and awful parts of our history in this country,” she said Sunday on CNN’s “State of the Union.”

“The behavior you've seen in all of the clips is not representative of who we are in Michigan,” she added.

Gretchen Gretchen Gretchen... Stop lying - it is not a good look for you. Yes, there were people legally performing open carry of firearms. Shootings? Of course not - safest place to be in the whole state. You did see some Gadsen Flags - learn your history. They are not Civil War flags, they are anti-tyranny flags from the Revolutionary War. You are almost 100 years off. Didn't see any swastikas at all and I am sure that images of those would have been plastered over all the mainstream media if they were present.

Gretchen is using a propaganda technique pioneered by Adolf Hitler called Big lie - from Infogalactic:

A big lie (German: große Lüge) is a propaganda technique. The expression was coined by Adolf Hitler, when he dictated his 1925 book Mein Kampf, about the use of a lie so "colossal" that no one would believe that someone "could have the impudence to distort the truth so infamously".

Your true colors are showing. Hope the voters wake up this November.

And that is it for the night

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Pot of tea and some videos. Working at home tomorrow and Monday.

Got a point there

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Great bit of karma - from Watts Up With That:

Australia, USA and Japan Snub China, Back Taiwan Re-joining the WHO
The global anger at China’s lies, coverups and incompetence in response to Covid-19 has delivered its first fruit; nations are putting global pandemic safety ahead of China’s sensitivity to any kind of international recognition of Taiwan as a sovereign nation.

WHO Becomes Battleground as Trump Chooses Pandemic Confrontation Over Cooperation
Critics say fighting the coronavirus has become secondary as U.S. seeks to hamstring the World Health Organization, turning it into a 2020 election issue along with Chinese trade.

BY COLUM LYNCH APRIL 29, 2020, 1:31 PM
The Trump administration is seeking to enlist the support of key allies to restore Taiwan’s status as an observer at the World Health Organization, setting the stage for a fresh confrontation with China as the world struggles to contain the coronavirus pandemic, according to diplomatic sources and notes of internal meetings at the global health agency.

The United States and Japan are asking key like-minded nations, including Australia, the United Kingdom, France, and Germany, to co-sign a draft letter to Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the director-general of WHO, requesting he invite the Taiwanese delegation to the World Health Assembly, the United Nations health agency’s key decision-making body, which is expected to meet virtually in mid-May.

The WHO initiative has a limited chance of success since nothing irks Beijing more than support for Taiwan, which it regards as a renegade province, and China is likely to retaliate against any move by Tedros or by other governments to include Taiwan in deliberations on public health. But the Trump administration’s bid provides the latest sign that Washington is placing a higher priority on eliciting criticism of China, its chief geostrategic adversary, than exploring ways the two superpowers, or other governments for that matter, could collaborate in preventing the spread of the coronavirus.

Quoted article from Foreign Policy. A bit more:

ROC was ejected from the WHO in 1971, over US objections, when the majority of nations embraced Communist China as the sole representative of China and Taiwan.

This may not come to pass but it will be noticed and it will really stick in the craw of the communists currently in power. Taiwan has a much more robust economy. The Taiwanese GDP per Capita is $50,500, for mainland China, their GDP per Capita is $18,200. Whenever I am buying machine tools, I always prefer Taiwanese or Indian manufacturers - significantly higher quality for about the same cost.

Communist China screwed the pooch big-time - it will be interesting to see how they pay for this.

OMG - we have a winner

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The sauce came out amazing. There is quite the difference between these and even a really good canned tomato. Granted, I took extra care with the rest of the sauce so as to develop a good balanced flavor but Good Lord, this is delicious.

I pick up my racks from the auction house on Tuesday - they are a few miles from the Costco Business Center so planning to visit there and stock up.

The wine is delicious and a perfect pairing with the pasta but I am getting none of the physical craving for it that plagued me for much of my life. Nice to enjoy a glass or two when I want to.

UPDATE: Didn't even have the one glass. Had about 3/4 of it (eight ounce mason jar filled about half-way) and tossed the rest. Very much enjoyed what I had and it was a perfect complement to my dinner but did not want any more.

Time to boil some water

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Sauce smells heavenly and tastes amazing. Nothing like a real tomato. Been reducing for about an hour. Planning to have a glass or two of red wine with dinner - first time in over six months with the exception of a few dinners over at someone else's house.

Get the pasta cooked and tossed with the sauce - dinner time.

Our servants are getting uppity

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Sometimes the mainstream media starts to get it right; but then, its masters have to step in and remind them of their place in the ecosystem.

From The New York Times Editorial Board:

Investigate Tara Reade’s Allegations
Americans deserve to know more about a sexual assault accusation against the likely Democratic Party nominee.

And meanwhile (from FOX News):

Mainstream Dems push to move past Biden allegation in wake of denial, as DNC responds to NYT call for probe
Mainstream Democrats, former Obama officials and allies in the women’s rights community are making a clear push to move past the controversy over the sexual-assault allegation dogging presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden after he denied former Senate staffer Tara Reade's claims for the first time on the record.

The Democratic National Committee (DNC) also responded Saturday to a New York Times call for a probe into the allegation, telling Fox News it was an "absurd suggestion on its face."

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had this week sent a clear signal that she was “satisfied” with Biden's response on the matter. Biden had not publicly addressed the claims -- although his campaign had denied them -- until Friday morning. After he denied the claims in a statement and in an MSNBC interview, Pelosi repeated her stance.

If it were not for their double standards, they would have no standards at all.
The press are just Democratic operatives with a byline.

SOP - CYA - WHO

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SOP? Standard Operating Procedure - something every bureaucrat learns at the cradle.

When you screw up (not if - when - remember, we are talking about bureaucrats here), you Cover Your Ass and minimize and contain the damage to your position and your organization. Something the World Health Organization is doing right now - from PJ Media:

WHO Washes Its Hands of Any Responsibility for the Coronavirus Pandemic
The World Health Organization, which worked hand in hand with China to spread disinformation about the coronavirus, says that it’s not its fault if a million people will die because the WHO gave the world “enough time to intervene.”

The WHO’s logic is impeccable. Apparently, its leaders think because they declared a “Global Health Emergency” on January 30 that nations should have locked down, shut down, and sheltered in place immediately.

Meanwhile, the WHO had people on the ground in Wuhan who knew how bad it was in China and how bad it was likely to get once people exposed to the virus left China to go home.

CNBC:

The agency declared Covid-19 a global health emergency on Jan. 30 when there were only 82 cases outside of China and zero deaths, WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said during a press conference on Friday. “Meaning, the world had enough time to intervene.”

“Me and my colleagues believe that,” he added. “To declare a global emergency in that situation I think it says it all. It says it all.”

What it says is, “I’m a bureaucrat and I’m covering my behind.”

President Trump is on the right path. The WHO needs to be defunded. It serves absolutely zero tangible purpose except to employ otherwise unemployable bureaucrats and to send them to exotic locales for do-nothing conferences and $1,000/plate fancy dinners. Oh so important...

Their office building would make a nice Trump Tower.

Posted a few days ago that the Costco Business Center has started carrying authentic San Marzano canned tomatoes. Having my first taste of these tonight. Picked up some fresh pasta and a shallot at the store today. Sauté an ounce of pancetta and the shallot, a bit of garlic (sliced not crushed) and deglaze with a splash of vermouth. Add the tomatoes, reduce for a bit and then some salt and pepper and basil leaves (fresh). Sitting here salivating. Perfect evening for a hearty dinner - maybe even have a glass of wine.

And back to work 'ya bum!

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Spent way too much time on the computer today - got some (overdue) web stuff done. Need to do bills too but that can wait until tomorrow or Monday. Music room is calling me...

Raining cats and dogs now - let up for a bit while I was running some errands but it is back with a vengence. Refilled the hummingbird feeders (three of them) so they are happy.

Getting chilly - great day for a fire but a bit late in the day. Turning up the heat instead. Probably do one tomorrow as the forecast is for more of the same for the next four or five days. Bleagh. Time for a road trip to the Southwest or something...

Jay Inslee, call your office - from The Babylon Bee:

Governor Unveils Innovative 37-Step Plan To Reopen State Over The Next 10 Years
With many Americans eager to get back to work, state governors across the country are responding with their plans for giving everyone permission to be normal human beings again. One state governor is enjoying universal acclaim after unveiling his own innovative plan for getting his state reopened.

The new plan is called 'Our Vision for Health, Safety, Virtue, and Eternal Peace' and is a 37-step, 10-year plan for slowly opening up sections of the state economy. It reads as follows:

    1. Form an exploratory committee to consult various experts on reopening things
    2. Set date to hear recommendations from the exploratory committee
    3. Create a panel of experts to explore the recommendations recommended by the exploratory committee
    4. Build a brand new website to post exploratory committee recommendations for public comment
    5. Discuss feedback from health experts over catered seafood lunch
    6. Wait 4 weeks to see if catered seafood lunch led to any additional COVID infections
    7. Hire commission to gauge the effectiveness of collaboration over catered seafood lunches
    8. Take away all the guns
    9. Announce a 12-phase reopening of the economy, starting with the businesses with the best lobbyists
    10. Begin Phase 1

27 more steps at the site. The announcement closes with this:

Other states have announced they will wait 10-15 years to judge the effectiveness of this 37 part plan before releasing their own plans. The only exception is Texas, whose governor simply said, "We're open, y'all!"

If I didn't love where I am so much (and if I were 40 years younger), moving to Texas or Florida would be really attractive.

Bird migration

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I knew that weather radar was also used for plotting seasonal bird migration - did not know that weather forecasting models could be used to forecast bird numbers. Makes perfect sense. From Cliff Mass:

Forecasting Bird Migration with Weather Radar and Models
We are now in the midst of the big bird migration time of the year and weather radar can help documents the huge flux of birds overhead.

But even more fascinating, we can skillfully predict bird migration using numerical weather prediction.

One of my favorite sites to check out bird migration is BirdCast, run by the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology. I really appreciate this group and as an undergrad at Cornell I frequently visited their Sapsucker Woods Wildlife Sanctuary.

One of the wonderful things they have on their website is real-time bird migration maps based on the clever use of weather radar (see below). Turns out that weather radar is a very effective tool for tracking birds, particularly when there is not much precipitation (when the National Weather Radars are in clear air mode).

The map below provides an example: a real-time snapshot of bird migration at 12:50 AM PDT early this (Saturday) morning. The colors shows the intensity of bird migration and the orange arrows provide the direction of migration (which can be determined from the Doppler weather radar signal!). Not surprisingly, most birds are moving northward and the Pacific Northwest is an active migration route. The largest migration is from Texas to Wisconsin. By the way, the units of this map is THOUSANDS of bird per km line per hour. That is a lot of birds!

Much more at the site. Fascinating and now, it adds a new dimension to watching their comings and goings.

WTF - how could they have driven for so long with it like that. Must have felt really "off" and been making quite the noise:

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From Defense One, August 14th, 2019:

Weaponizing Biotech: How China’s Military Is Preparing for a ‘New Domain of Warfare’
We may be on the verge of a brave new world indeed. Today’s advances in biotechnology and genetic engineering have exciting applications in medicine — yet also alarming implications, including for military affairs. China’s national strategy of military-civil fusion (军民融合) has highlighted biology as a priority, and the People’s Liberation Army could be at the forefront of expanding and exploiting this knowledge.

The PLA’s keen interest is reflected in strategic writings and research that argue that advances in biology are contributing to changing the form or character (形态) of conflict. For example:

    • In 2010’s War for Biological Dominance (制生权战争), Guo Jiwei (郭继卫), a professor with the Third Military Medical University, emphasizes the impact of biology on future warfare.  
    • In 2015, then-president of the Academy of Military Medical Sciences He Fuchu (贺福初) argued that biotechnology will become the new “strategic commanding heights” of national defense, from biomaterials to “brain control” weapons. Maj. Gen. He has since become the vice president of the Academy of Military Sciences, which leads China’s military science enterprise. 
    • Biology is among seven “new domains of warfare” discussed in a 2017 book by Zhang Shibo (张仕波), a retired general and former president of the National Defense University, who concludes: “Modern biotechnology development is gradually showing strong signs characteristic of an offensive capability,” including the possibility that “specific ethnic genetic attacks” (特定种族基因攻击) could be employed. 
    • The 2017 edition of Science of Military Strategy (战略学), a textbook published by the PLA’s National Defense University that is considered to be relatively authoritative, debuted a section about biology as a domain of military struggle, similarly mentioning the potential for new kinds of biological warfare to include “specific ethnic genetic attacks.” 

These are just a few examples of an extensive and evolving literature by Chinese military scholars and scientists who are exploring new directions in military innovation.

Much more at the site - just wonderful... I am betting that the people involved in the release of COVID-19 were taken out and shot within weeks of its discovery in the wild. For all China's size, it is still a very backward and poorly run nation. Communism and a central state government will do that to you. Really nice if you are a member of the nomenklatura, really sucky if you are not.

I love it. Much better than Basket of Deplorables although that was a good one. From Conservative Media:

CNN’s Chris Cuomo is Now Openly Lying About His Coronavirus Quarantine and Yelling at ‘Trumps Grumps’ for exposing him
Just over a week after being caught in a blatant lie about his coronavirus quarantine experience, CNN host Chris Cuomo is still standing by his same inaccurate story — and lashing out at those who dare to question him.

You may remember that Cuomo was spotted out and about walking with his family over Easter weekend despite allegedly self-quarantining in his basement after contracting the coronavirus in late March. He was reportedly checking out undeveloped property he had recently purchased in East Hampton — a 30-minute drive from his Southampton home — when a cyclist confronted him.

The confrontation got heated and quickly went public, a police report was filed, and Cuomo even acknowledged the exchange on the radio the next day.

Yet last week, CNN staged Cuomo “emerging” for the first time from his basement quarantine as if the whole thing had never happened.

“All right, here it is: the official reentry from the basement, cleared by [the Centers for Disease Control],” Cuomo announced as he walked up the stairs. “This is what I’ve been dreaming of literally for weeks.”

Yeah - poor Fredo was confusing Truth with Narrative. Hard to do when you have such a simple mind. Nice that CNN hires the handicapped.

Screen caps of the now deleted tweets from Cuomo admitting to breaking quarantine as well as links to other recountings. The lies are out there for anyone to see.

China tried to "save face" about the coronavirus and they lied - from the New York Post:

China lied about origin of coronavirus, leaked intelligence report says
A damning dossier leaked from the “Five Eyes” intelligence alliance claims that China lied to the world about human-to-human transmission of the virus, disappeared whistleblowers and refused to hand over virus samples so the West could make a vaccine.

The bombshell 15-page research document also indicated that the virus was leaked from the Wuhan Institute of Virology, a claim initially dismissed as a conspiracy theory because Chinese officials insisted the virus came from the local wet markets, according to the Australian Daily Telegraph.

“At the same time, a senior intelligence source told Fox News that while most intelligence agencies believe COVID-19 originated in the Wuhan lab, it was thought to have been released accidentally.”

The report from the intelligence-sharing alliance of the five leading English-speaking countries, the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand and Canada called China’s shady handling of the virus “an assault on international transparency.”

They need to pay for this - I wonder how it will all play out.

On lockdown

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He gave us some really bad advice - all of his projected numbers were at least ten times higher than what actually happened. Good news that he is being pulled from the limelight. From NBC News:

White House blocking Fauci from testifying before Congress about coronavirus response
The White House has blocked Dr. Anthony Fauci from testifying about the response to the coronavirus crisis before the House Appropriations Committee, a spokesman for the committee told NBC News on Friday.

“The Appropriations Committee sought Dr. Anthony Fauci as a witness at next week’s Labor-HHS-Education Subcommittee hearing on COVID-19 response. We have been informed by an administration official that the White House has blocked Dr. Fauci from testifying,” the spokesperson, Evan Hollander, said.

What does the House Appropriations Committee have to do with a pandemic? Looks like they want more pork for the Democrats and looking to use anyone and anything to get their way.

And we got rain today

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April showers - but it is May now dammit...

Was really coming down this morning - slowing and visibility is getting better but the forecast has intermittent rain through the next day or so.

Heading out for coffee and a few errands this morning but working at home all day today and tomorrow.

Earthquakes in Puerto Rico and the island of Crete but no words of serious damage.

And that's all for now

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Nothing catches my eye. No plans for tomorrow - work here for a bit, maybe do a run up to the farm but the weather is supposed to be quite rainy. We will see.

Feeling a bit sleepy so a pot of tea, some videos and then an early bed.

WA State announced today that it is staying locked down until the end of May. Fscking idiots. They are doing a "staged" reopening - bit by bit. Really hope that people wake up and vote the bastards out of office.

Rules are for the little people

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Remember when the New York City mayor (what's his name?) and his wife went for a nice walk in the park - after he ordered all the parks closed to people and the NYC citizens to place themselves into home quarantine?

Same thing, different state - from Chicago, Illinois website patch.com:

Does 'All-In Illinois' Slogan Apply To Billionaire Gov's Family?
All over the country, a collection of first ladies have emerged as valuable advocates in the fight to slow the spread of new coronavirus.

Last week, Maryland first lady Yumi Hogan was hailed a hero for quietly scoring 500,000 COVID-19 tests kits from South Korea to aid the Old Line State's coronavirus response.

"We convened countless calls, nearly every night, sometimes it seemed like all night," Gov. Larry Hogan said of the 22 days he and his wife, a fine artist, lobbied the Korean government to purchase the hard-to-come-by coronavirus test kits.

As the pandemic keeps Californians on a strict lockdown, Gov. Gavin Newsom's "first partner," Jennifer Seibel, has stepped up to lead her state's volunteer commission, publicly promised to fight for children falling behind in school without internet access, and even tweeted about struggling like everybody else when her family ran out of toilet paper thanks to Golden State hoarders.

A bit more and then this:

As things turn out, as the governor makes regular public pleas for Illinoisans to be "All In" during the extended stay-at-home fight to slow the spread of COVID-19, Mrs. Pritzker has been out of state, sources told Patch.

Specifically, the first lady has been spending time at their $12-million equestrian estate in Wellington, just down the horse trail from Bruce Springsteen, Bill Gates and Billy Joel, the family purchased shortly after J.B. was elected governor last year.

So it is alright for his wife to fly to Florida and avoid Chicago but all the Chicago citizens must shelter in place. Aparently, he was questioned about this during a press conference and got quite testy towards the reporter. I will try to find a video.

Plan D - shelving

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Back home - Thai food was delicious and it was nice to sit by the river, read for a while and enjoy the food and surroundings.

Picked up the Rubbermaid wire shelving hardware from Lowe's and it is going back in a day or two. Got a screaming deal on the shelving itself ($8 for about 40 lineal feet) but it did not come with any of the hardware. Got the hardware for one part of the project and it was over $100 for about $10 worth of stamped and powder-coated sheet metal. I am in the wrong business. Return it when I am back in the area. Plans A, B and C have been assessed and discarded. Plan D it is.

I have a bunch of 3/4" plywood strips from another project - I will rip these into 2" wide strips and use those to hold the shelving to the wall. I have some 3/4" square steel tube and will use that to reinforce the fronts of the shelves. It will be a lot more work to rearrange the spacing on the shelves once they are in but this is not a showstopper at all. Cheap is better than fancy at this point and it will look as good as with the factory hardware, just a bit different.

Surf for a bit...

And points North for a bit

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Exchanging some stuff at Harbor Freight and buying some shelf hardware at either Lowe's or Home Depot. Costco, WalMart, food coop and then Thai food for dinner.

Got a bunch of nectar cooling down - refill the hummingbird feeders tomorrow. Getting a lot of activity in the last couple of weeks. Spring is here.

Won the three lots I was serious about. There were a couple others that I was interested in but was outbid by much more than I felt these were worth. Seriously people... Someone out there has more money then sense - nice win for the auction house though.

Got three 19-inch racks.

These are used for mounting electronics equipment and will live in the music room closet to hold some digital synthesizers and signal processors. These devices are controled through the computer so I do not need to have them out in the room. Two of them are nice large aluminum racks. The third is a steel rack - this one, I will cut up and incorporate into the cabinet I am building for my analog synthesizer. Being steel, they can be welded into the frame I am building - these are for the equipment I do need to access while playing.

$10 each for the aluminum racks ($177 each at Amazon) and $20 for the steel rack (no online listing but the MSRP is $475) I think I came out OK...

China being China

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Great post - kudos to the European Union for finally standing up to them. From TechDirt:

China Tried To Get The EU Not To Release A Report On China's COVID-19 Disinformation Efforts
It's becoming an unfortunate regularity that we keep writing posts highlighting how China is trying to suppress criticism around the globe regarding its terrible handling of the COVID-19 pandemic. As we've said over and over again, what the world needs right now is radical transparency regarding the disease and various responses, and instead we're getting standard operating procedures from the Chinese government which is all about suppressing bad information and denying everything (with a healthy does of spreading more disinfo everywhere -- make sure you check the comments here a few hours after we post this, because it seems to show up in a timely manner).

The latest example comes from the EU, where the Chinese government pressured officials in Brussels not to release a report about the Chinese government's disinformation efforts regarding COVID-19. While the EU did eventually release it, it put it out on a Friday evening (the classic news dump of where you hide stuff) and some of the criticism of China was supposedly "rearranged or removed."

Four diplomatic sources told Reuters that the report had initially been slated for release on April 21 but was delayed after Chinese officials picked up on a Politico news report hat previewed its findings.

A senior Chinese official contacted European officials in Beijing the same day to tell them that, “if the report is as described and it is released today it will be very bad for cooperation,” according to EU diplomatic correspondence reviewed by Reuters.

The correspondence quoted senior Chinese foreign ministry official Yang Xiaoguang as saying that publishing the report would make Beijing “very angry” and accused European officials of trying to please “someone else” - something the EU diplomats understood to be a reference to Washington.

The four sources said the report had been delayed as a result, and a comparison of the internal version of the report obtained by Reuters and the final version published late Friday showed several differences.

For reasons that are unclear, Reuters, despite breaking this story and it seeming to be an opportune time and place to do so, does not link to the report that was released. You can read it here. It seems to focus mostly on Russian disinfo campaigns, and, while it does include China, suggests that China is less active in such disinformation campaigns. Also, the key parts about China are at the very end of the document, which is apparently not where they were originally.

At this time, we need transparency, not obfuscation. China needs to realize that its weakness and failure to communicate is painting it in a very bad light. Its leadership is used to a compliant citizenry and is not prepared to handle global examination and criticism. Time for China to grow up and join the adults on the world stage.

Unreal - auction

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Still have the winning bids on three of the lots. Lost out on the others. People are bidding way too high:

20200501-a01.jpg

Just one example - four older PCs with no hard drive and being sold as-is / where-is. When I went to the preview, there was no chance to plug these in - no test bench, no monitor or keyboard, etc... They are worth maybe about $40 each on a good day - that someone is bidding double that is just plain nutz...

A new meme

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Heh:

20200501-tide-pods.jpg

From Busted Knuckles comes these words of advice:

You Better Figure This Shit Out
Our economy is going to be DOA by the end of Summer at this rate.

The Cavalry is not coming to save the day.

If you don’t already have contacts in the Underground Economy I suggest you start your own mini version. Word will get out and someone will start feeling you out to see how trust worthy you are. If you pass the test then opportunities will be presented to you.

It’s all in who ya know and get along with.

The Underground Economy is nothing to sneeze at in this country.

We are talking BILLIONS of dollars worth of transactions and that guestimate was one I saw ten years ago. It’s probably in the tens of Billions by now.

Tax and duty free.

Some Barter, some cash, run what ya brung, goods and services are where it’s at.

The government isn’t your friend, in case you haven’t quite got a handle on that yet.

Start talking to your friends and relatives first.

The Wimmins can be surprisingly good at this, they are more social oriented.

Of course I would never endorse anything illegal, right?

Being a prepper does not look so strange now - and the whole Chinese COVID is just a minor ripple in the continuum.

Hmmmm... Let's see: blacksmithing & welding, electronics, basic machining and repair, computers. I think I got this one covered. Might even start homebrewing again - used to be pretty good at that.

Deaths from Wuhan Coronavirus

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Interesting - a two-fer.

First, from Project Veritas:

BREAKING: Funeral Directors in COVID-19 Epicenter Doubt Legitimacy of Deaths Attributed to Pandemic, Fear Numbers are 'Padded'

    • Judge Calls Bullsh*t on Relative’s COVID-19 Cause of Death

    • Funeral Home: To Me all You're Doing is Padding the Statistics…Making the Death Rates in New York City Higher than Estimated

    • Staten Island Funeral Director Questions Mayor DeBlasio’s Role and Adds: I Think It’s Political

    • Brooklyn Funeral Director: They Are Padding Numbers; Medical Examiners Too Busy to Investigate

    • Brooklyn Funeral Director: 40-year-old Died in Home with No Symptoms Other Than Fever, Toe-Tagged as COVID-19 Victim

Project Veritas today released another video featuring conversations with funeral home directors and their staff throughout New York City questioning the number of deaths officially attributed to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In late April, a Project Veritas reporter spoke with Michael Lanza, the director of Staten
Island’s Colonial Funeral Home.

“To be honest with you, all of the death certificates are writing COVID on it, they’re writing
COVID on all the death certificates,” Lanza said.

Lanza said DeBlasio might see inflated COVID death tallies as a way to bring more money to New York City. “Whether they had a positive test or didn’t, so I think again this is my
personal opinion, I think like the mayor and our city--they’re looking for federal funding and the more they put COVID on the death certificate the more they can ask from the federal funds.”

The Staten Island funeral director said it did not add up to him.

“I think it’s political, so, I’m going to turn around and say: ‘You know, like, not everybody
that we have here that has COVID on the death certificate died of COVID.’ Can I prove that? No, but that is my suspicion.”

Much more at the site. And it is not just the state of New York or New York City - from The Philadelphia Inquirer:

Pa. removes more than 200 deaths from official coronavirus count as questions mount about reporting process, data accuracy
Twice in the last week, Pennsylvania’s official COVID-19 death count spiked.

Then, on Thursday, the number plummeted.

Officials from the state Department of Health provided several justifications for the fluctuations, citing technical issues, lengthy investigations, and the addition of “probable” deaths — those considered to be caused by the coronavirus but without confirmation from a test.

You cannot circumvent the law unless there is a crisis. The bigger the crisis, the more you can do.
Rule #1) of tyrants: manufacture a crisis and make it as large as you can get away with.
Classic Cloward-Piven Strategy.

And out for coffee

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The auction closes at 11:00AM so heading out now for a few things - do the box stores after this afternoon's grocery deliveries. There is a nice Thai restaurant near where those are so I think I have my evening planned out. Woo Hoo!!!

Something to remember

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Chuck and Nancy need to wander off into the sunset - they have not been doing their job for years:

20200501-looting.jpg

They were hired by their constituents to represent their interests. Not represent the interests of big business and the Mexican cartels. They let the power of their offices corrupt them.

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