Finally Friday Reads: Your Extra Hour comes on Sunday!

EMIL NOLDE, Lake Lucerne, 1931-34

Good Day Sky Dancers!

We’re closing in on “the most wonderful day of the year!” Since it’s my birthday, I’m allowed one rant, and annually, it has to do with “Rejoice in the End of Daylight Saving Time.” This is from The Atlantic, and the opinion’s written by Katherine J. Wu.

This weekend, I’ll be waking up to one of my favorite days of the year: a government-sanctioned 25-hour Sunday. Forget birthdays, forget my anniversary; heck, forget the magic of Christmas. On Sunday, I’ll get to do a bit of time traveling as most of the United States transitions out of daylight saving time back into glorious, glorious standard time.

I may be a standard-time stan, but I’m no monster. I feel for the die-hard fans of DST. With the push of a button, or the turn of a dial, most Americans will be cleaving an hour of brightness out of their afternoons, at a time of year when days are already fast-dimming. Leaving work to a dusky sky is a bummer; a pre-dinner stroll cut short by darkness can really be the pits.

But if we all put aside our differences for just a moment, we can celebrate the fact that this weekend, nearly all Americans—regardless of where they sit on the DST love-hate spectrum—will be blessed with a 25-hour day, and that freaking rocks. If we must live in a dumb world where the dumb clocks shift twice a dumb year, let’s at least come together on the objective greatness of falling back.

I don’t want to minimize the nuisance of the time shift. Toggling back and forth twice a year is an absolute pain, and many Americans cheered when the Senate unanimously passed a proposal earlier this year to move the entire U.S. to permanent daylight saving time. But Katy Milkman, a behavioral scientist at the University of Pennsylvania and the host of the podcast Choiceology—who, by the way, loathes the end of DST—told me we can all reframe the autumn clock change “as a windfall.” Sunday will contain a freebie hour to do whatever we like. Rafael Pelayo, a sleep specialist at Stanford, will be spending his at the farmers’ market; Ken Carter, a psychologist and self-described morning person at Emory University, told me he might chill with an extra cup of coffee and his cats. I’m planning to split my minutes between a nap and Paper Girls (the graphic novel, not the show).

I will probably walk Temple a little longer that morning and then enjoy some tea and breadmaking.

I got a pretty good laugh as some friendly remaining Twitter employer or algorithm has fact-checked the Chief Twit.

And here’s the fun part!

And let’s just track some of those down!

This is from Newsweek. “Every Advertiser to Pull Out of Twitter Since Musk’s Takeover—Full List”. Many businesses don’t want to be associated with a site that lets NAZIs, Racists, and nasty-talking idiots run amok, according to those asking those businesses.  For some reason, everyone but Musk gets it.

Since Elon Musk‘s takeover of Twitter last week, at least six major companies have stopped advertising on the platform over concerns about how the billionaire will affect content moderation policies on the app.

During the rocky process of acquiring the platform, marked by U-turns, controversies, and lawsuits, Musk pledged to make Twitter a champion of free speech. This promise led many right-wingers to see Musk’s takeover as a victory for conservatives over political correctness, though the Tesla CEO is yet to implement any changes to the way the platform moderates content.

But where right-wingers saw potential, many companies appear to have spotted a risk of damage to their business, especially after a sudden surge of slurs and hateful comments were reported on the platform immediately following Musk’s takeover.

This could be a problem for Musk’s Twitter: before his takeover, the company reported making 90 percent of its revenue from advertisers. Now that Twitter is set to charge its blue-tick users $8 per month to keep their verified badge, it’s unclear whether this could make up for lost revenues from advertising.

Marsh Landscape with Farmhouses at Utenwarf, Emile Nolde,

Most of us can live without “slurs and hateful comments.”  This list is from The Daily Mail.

General Mills, Audi and Pfizer join growing list of companies pausing advertising on Twitter amid fears the platform won’t be a ‘safe place for brands’ after Musk’s $44B takeover

  • Audi and Cheerios-maker General Mills confirmed an ad pause on Thursday
  • Pfizer and Oreos-maker Mondelez also reportedly halted Twitter spending
  • Brands are watching nervously to see how Twitter evolves under Elon Musk
  • Musk insists that it will be safe for brands and not a ‘free-for-all hellscape’
  • General Motors previously announced a pause in its Twitter ad spending
  • Carmakers are especially worried about fair treatment from Tesla CEO Musk 

And you can check this out of you want from the Washington Post: “Elon Musk begins mass layoffs at Twitter. Employees said the layoffs came across teams, as Twitter broadly reduced its workforce. Musk originally pitched investors on cutting Twitter’s staff up to 75 percent.” Sounds like they’re in serious need of a union.

Elon Musk is beginning mass layoffs at Twitter, sharply reducing the company’s workforce of 7,500 and kicking off his wholesale overhaul of the company.

An email went out to the company’s employees late Thursday notifying employees of plans to cut jobs, informing them that by 9 a.m. Pacific time Friday, workers would receive an email with the subject line: “Your Role at Twitter.”

Those keeping their jobs would be notified on their company email. Those losing them would be told via their personal email.

Marshy Landscape Under the Evening Sky, c.1943

What a guy!

All of this becomes before the Hatefest of our Times.  The Midterm ballots probably won’t be counted by November 14, but that will not stop Orange Caligula’s big announcement. This is from Axios: “Scoop: Trump team eyes Nov. 14 announcement,” reported by Jonathan Swan.   I need a replacement for my now deceased 1976 RCA TV in my bedroom.  Maybe, I’ll just extend my shopping past that date so I don’t have to see any of it anywhere.

Former President Trump’s inner circle is discussing announcing the launch of a 2024 presidential campaign on Nov. 14 — with the official announcement possibly followed by a multi-day series of political events, according to three sources familiar with the sensitive discussions.

Why it matters: Trump and his top advisers have been signaling for weeks that a 2024 announcement is imminent. But those discussions have reached the point that allies are blocking off days in their calendars for the week after the midterms — and preparing to travel.

What we’re hearing: With polls pointing toward a good night for Republicans on Tuesday, Trump plans to surf the GOP’s expected post-midterm euphoria to build momentum for his own effort to retake the White House.

  • Look for Trump to take credit for Republican victories across the board —including those he propelled with his endorsements, and even those he had nothing to do with.

Between the lines: Trump has long planned to announce shortly after midterms — and even toyed with announcing before Nov. 8 — in an effort to get ahead of potential rivals for the GOP’s 2024 nomination, including Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis.

  • In recent weeks, Trump has been inching closer and closer to saying he is running, relishing the applause as he hints to his rally crowds that he’s doing it.
  • At his Thursday rally in Sioux City, Iowa, Trump said: “In order to make our country successful and safe and glorious, I will very, very, very probably do it again … Get ready that’s all I’m telling you — very soon. Get ready.”
  • A Trump spokesman declined to comment. The discussions are still fluid and could change depending on Tuesday’s results, especially if the Senate still hangs in the balance and the Georgia race between Herschel Walker and Raphael Warnock goes to a run-off.

Reality check: It’s Trump. So anything could happen — or not. He’s conflicted on the timing and nothing is ever certain. But people who have been close to him for many years are lacing up for the next race.

Emil Nolde, Meer mit zwei qualmenden Dampfern [Sea With Two Smoldering Steamboats], 1930,

Maybe the Justice Department will fit the frogmarch in before then.  We can always hope.  CNN also has an exclusive: “Exclusive: DOJ mulling potential special counsel if Trump runs in 2024”.

Now federal investigators are planning for a burst of post-election activity in Trump-related investigations. That includes the prospect of indictments of Trump’s associates – moves that could be made more complicated if Trump declares a run for the presidency.

“They can crank up charges on almost anybody if they wanted to,” said one defense attorney working on January 6-related matters, who added defense lawyers have “have no idea” who ultimately will be charged.

“This is the scary thing,” the attorney said.

Trump and his associates also face legal exposure in Georgia, where Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis is investigating Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election in the Peach State and expects to wrap her probe by the end of the year.

Indicting an active candidate for the White House would surely spark a political firestorm. And while no decision has been made about whether a special counsel might be needed in the future, DOJ officials have debated whether doing so could insulate the Justice Department from accusations that Joe Biden’s administration is targeting his chief political rival, people familiar with the matter tell CNN.

Special counsels, of course, are hardly immune from political attacks. Both former special counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation and special counsel John Durham’s investigation into the origins of the FBI’s Russia probe came under withering criticism from their opponents.

Milkmaids I, 1903 by Emil Nolde,© Nolde Stiftung Seeb

I wonder if we’ll get an increase or a decrease in White Christiani Nationalist Activity if any of this comes to pass. This morning, the New York Times had this frightening headline: “F.B.I. Locates Suspect After Warning of Security Threat at New Jersey Synagogues. Officials said the man holds “radical extremist views.” On Thursday, they had alerted congregations across the state to be on alert.”

It was not clear whether he was in custody, but officials said the threat had been “mitigated.”

“He no longer poses a threat to the community at this time,” James E. Dennehy, the special agent in charge of the F.B.I.’s Newark office, said during a morning conference call with state and federal law enforcement officials and more than 500 Jewish leaders.

Mr. Dennehy said investigators believed that the man, who is from New Jersey, was acting alone, but they are continuing to pursue leads about people he might have been in contact with. The man was not publicly identified, and officials offered no additional information about whether he had been charged with a crime.

He was located Thursday night, officials said, and questioned for a “few hours.”

“He expressed radical, extremist views and ideology, as well as an extreme amount of hate against the Jewish community,” Mr. Dennehy said.

Hakeem Jeffries may follow Nancy Pelosi as Speaker.  This is from Politico: “How a secret meeting put Hakeem Jeffries on track to replace Pelosi. Behind the scenes, House Democrats battle to anoint their next generation of leaders.”

The race to succeed Speaker Nancy Pelosi as the leader of House Democrats may have been clinched at a meeting in the Capitol on Sept. 1.

That’s when House Majority Whip Jim Clyburn of South Carolina and Rep. Hakeem Jeffries of New York slipped back to Washington to connect in Clyburn’s office during the summer congressional recess at Jeffries’ request.

Jeffries, the fifth-ranking House Democrat who aspires to be the first-ranking House Democrat in the next Congress, was picking up heightened chatter from colleagues about California Rep. Adam Schiff’s outreach expressing his own interest in the top caucus job.

The 52-year-old Jeffries was concerned enough that he offered to fly to South Carolina to seek the counsel of the 82-year-old Clyburn. The younger lawmaker wanted to gently make sure his elder in the Congressional Black Caucus knew of Schiff’s quiet campaign — and to even more gently warn Clyburn about the risk of splitting votes between them and opening a path for the ambitious Californian.

Jeffries need not have been alarmed.

“There’s nothing I would ever do to impede the progress of our up-and-coming young Democrats and I see him as an up-and-coming young Democrat,” Clyburn said in an interview about Jeffries. “He knows that, I didn’t have to tell him that — but I did.”

Asked if he would be willing to serve in an emeritus role in the leadership, Clyburn said he is “willing to do anything the caucus thinks is to their benefit,” noting that Jeffries has “referred to me as a mentor.”

Evening Glow, 1915
Emil Nolde (born Emil Hansen)

I’m going to end with a question by Greg Sargent at The Washington Post who asks a question that I frequently ask: “Why isn’t Trumpism hurting the GOP?” 

Something extraordinary just happened: In the space of just this week, a president and an ex-president warned that the opposition poses an existential threat to our political way of life. Joe Biden declared that “MAGA Republicans” have placed democracy “under threat.” Barack Obama warned that if GOP election deniers win in Arizona, “democracy may not survive.”

Yet the ongoing MAGA threat to U.S. democracy, including from Donald Trump himself, isn’t harming Republican chances of winning the House and very plausibly the Senate. Some think Democratic warnings are backfiring: Former Obama strategist David Axelrod suggested vulnerable Democrats don’t want the unpopular Biden to elevate himself in the election’s home stretch.

Why hasn’t the threat to democracy extracted a heavier price from Republicans? Is it true that vulnerable Democrats don’t want Biden to prominently address the topic? If so, should he have stood down, since Democrats themselves think protecting democracy above all requires keeping MAGA Republicans out of power? Could a more forceful case have made this a bigger voting issue?

I raised these questions with a number of senior Democratic strategists and pollsters working on tough House and Senate races. The answers that emerged are complicated, nuanced — and ultimately vexing.

First, it’s critical to note that messages about the threat to democracy mean different things to different voter groups, which means they help Democrats in some ways but not in others.

Democratic pollster Celinda Lake has found this mixed picture in extensive work withfocus groups. Elevating threats to democracy, political violence and the events of Jan. 6, 2021, Lake tells me, “helps mobilize the Democratic base,” and, importantly, this kicked in at a key moment, when anger over the demise of abortion rights was “receding” in late summer.

Thisis not a small matter. Threats-to-democracy talkalso galvanizes volunteers, who are critical amid soaring polarization and races decided on the margins, says Ezra Levin, co-founder of the progressive group Indivisible.

I think it’s because many Republicans see their ability to be public assholes and not be held to account for it as their idea of democracy. Correct me if I am wrong.  Anyway, I’m going to have a nice quiet day, with the only goal being to relax and not let things get to me.

What’s on your reading and blogging list today?

Monday Reads: Pandemania and our Covid Times

See the source image

Good Day Sky Dancers!

Every day we learn something disgusting about how the Covid-19 Pandemic in our country threatens the majority of us while Trump ignores it and lets his billionaire buddies enrich themselves.  Trump’s enablers have enriched themselves at terrible human cost. Trump’s kleptocracy is killing us.

Today’s art are pandemic cartoons from 1918.  Think we’d have learned by now wouldn’t ya?

This headline is from Jane Mayer at The New Yorker: “How Trump Is Helping Tycoons Exploit the Pandemic. The secretive titan behind one of America’s largest poultry companies, who is also one of the President’s top donors, is ruthlessly leveraging the coronavirus crisis—and his vast fortune—to strip workers of protections.”

The union’s struggles with the Labor Department are part of a much larger reversal of federal protections for workers, consumers, and the environment under Trump. In 2016, the President promised to “dismantle the regulatory state,” as Stephen Bannon, his former White House strategist, often put it. Given the complexities of federal rulemaking, this proved somewhat difficult in the first three years of the Administration. But the pandemic has offered Trump an opportunity: now that he can invoke an economic emergency, he can relax, rescind, or suspend federal regulations by fiat. In May and June, Trump issued a pair of executive orders directing national agencies to ignore federal regulations and environmental laws if they burdened the economy—again, in many instances, the companies were told that they just had to act “in good faith.” As the Times and the Washington Post have reported, these moves have weakened regulations on all kinds of businesses, from trucking companies to oil and gas pipelines. In Corbo’s view, many in the media have missed one of the biggest aspects of the covid-19 story. “Everyone is looking at the shiny object—the pandemic,” he said. “Meanwhile, the government is deregulating everything. It’s unreal.”

In April, for instance, the United States Department of Agriculture granted fifteen waivers to poultry plants, including a Mountaire facility in North Carolina, authorizing them to increase the number of birds per minute—or B.P.M.—that workers must process. The waivers enabled companies to accelerate the pace from a hundred and forty B.P.M. to a hundred and seventy-five. Angela Stuesse, an anthropologist at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, who has studied the poultry industry, told me that, in the chicken business, “you make pennies on a pound.” Among the few ways to increase profits are squeezing labor costs and accelerating line speeds, which are set by the U.S.D.A. to accommodate federal inspectors, who are supposed to assess every bird. The regulations have long been a point of contention between poultry-plant owners and unions, because as the line speed increases so do injuries and other stresses on workers’ bodies. “They move the birds so fast, you have to be really close together to get every bird,” Williams, the union spokesperson, told me. “It’s like the ‘I Love Lucy’ episode at the chocolate factory.” Even though the C.D.C. has emphasized that social distancing is necessary to maintain safety, faster production lines require more workers, who must then squeeze closer together. In many areas of a plant, poultry workers already stand two feet apart at most, often facing one another. Nonetheless, the U.S.D.A. has now indicated that it plans to permit faster line speeds throughout the poultry industry. The National Chicken Council, the industry’s trade group, had lobbied for precisely this change. Williams fears that “these policies will result in the deaths of many more workers.”

Debbie Berkowitz, a program director at the National Employment Law Project, a pro-labor group, who previously headed the health-and-safety division of the United Food and Commercial Workers Union, told me that, thanks to the pandemic, “the Chamber of Commerce is getting everything they always wanted.” An analysis of public records by her group found that, of the fifteen poultry plants granted waivers to increase line speeds in April, eight had covid-19 outbreaks at the time. “If you’re a worker in a plant bursting with covid-19, it’s a shitshow for you,” Berkowitz said. “The industry is getting away with murdering people.”

Michaels, the former osha head, told me, “We’re very much back in Upton Sinclair’s ‘The Jungle’ ”—the 1906 novel that exposed abuses in the meat industry. The book so shocked Americans that President Theodore Roosevelt ordered an immediate investigation of slaughterhouses. The result was landmark consumer-protection legislation that formed the foundation of today’s Food and Drug Administration. But, for the past four decades, wealthy donors to the Republican Party have pushed hard for the dismantling of Progressive Era reforms and later curbs on corporate power. The 1980 platform of the Libertarian Party, which was underwritten by the billionaire conservative donors Charles and David Koch, laid out a road map, calling for the abolition of almost every federal agency, including the F.D.A. Although Trump claims to be a defender of the working class, he has delighted wealthy donors—and their pressure groups, such as the Club for Growth—by reliably serving their agenda. Michaels told me, “Mountaire and others are taking advantage of the covid-19 crisis to say, ‘We need more chickens.’ The Trump Administration is aiding and abetting this. They’re saying, ‘Produce more food,’ regardless of the cost to workers. If companies cared as much about their workers as they do about their chickens, we’d be a better country.”

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I know that’s an outsized quote but this article is important. Please go read it.

Rather than address the pandemic, the kleptocracy is after our lives.   This is from today’s NYT: “Inside the White House, a Gun Industry Lobbyist Delivers for His Former Patrons. The Trump administration lifted a ban on sales of silencers to private overseas buyers that was intended to protect U.S. troops from ambushes. The change was championed by a lawyer for the president who had worked for a firearms trade group.”

Michael B. Williams spent nearly two years helping to run a trade group focused on expanding sales of firearm silencers by American manufacturers.

But try as he might, he could not achieve one of the industry’s main goals: overturning a ban on sales to private foreign buyers enacted by the State Department to protect American troops in Afghanistan and elsewhere.

Then Mr. Williams joined the Trump administration.

As a White House lawyer, he pushed to overturn the prohibition, raising the issue with influential administration officials and creating pressure within the State Department, according to current and former government officials.

On Friday, the State Department lifted the ban, and a longtime industry goal was realized. The change paved the way for as much as $250 million a year in possible new overseas sales for companies that Mr. Williams had championed as general counsel of the American Suppressor Association.

His role in pushing to lift the ban, which has not been previously reported, follows a well-established pattern in the Trump administration, with the president handing over policymaking to allies of special interest groups with a stake in those policies. And in this case, Mr. Williams’s victory comes for a key constituency as President Trump seeks re-election.

See the source image

Time’s reporters–Michael LaForgia and Kenneth P. Vogel–continue to address the presence of former lobbyists inside the Trumpist regime delivering for the former employers.  Also, check out exactly what else Williams is doing.

Mr. Trump’s cabinet includes a former coal lobbyist as administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, a former lobbyist for the defense contractor Raytheon Technologies as Defense Secretary, a lobbyist for the auto industry at the helm of the Energy Department and a former oil and gas lobbyist as Interior Secretary. Those industries have been sources of funds for Mr. Trump’s campaign and committees supporting it.

Mr. Williams’s work, though lower-profile, has nevertheless been a boon to another crucial political constituency: the gun lobby, which plays a leading role in Republican get-out-the-vote efforts and views eliminating silencer restrictions as an emerging issue. It’s a subject that has been embraced by the president’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr. — an ally of Mr. Williams’s former trade group — as well as by other powerful gun industry groups.

So, not only are they trying to undercut our rule of law but also any chance we have at getting through this Pandemic without wiping out thousands of people and our health care infrastructure.  Trump’s ego can handle people dying on his watch but not  Dr. Fauci’s approval ratings.

From the link above:

The tension between the White House and Fauci was on full display last Sunday, when CBS host Margaret Brennan told millions of viewers that “Face the Nation” had tried for three months to interview him.

White House communications officials, who must approve television appearances related to the coronavirus, responded by allowing Fauci spots this week on PBS NewsHour, a CNN town hall with Sanjay Gupta and NBC’s “Meet the Press” during the prime Sunday morning slot, according to one person familiar with the situation.

Then Fauci joined a Facebook Live event on Tuesday with Sen. Doug Jones (D-Ala.), disputing Trump’s assertions that a lower death rate showed the country’s progress against the pandemic. Fauci called it “a false narrative” and warned, “Don’t get yourself into false complacency.”

Fauci did not end up making any of the scheduled appearances. The White House canceled them after his Tuesday remarks, according to the person, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to relate behind-the-scenes conversations.

The episode underscores the deteriorating relationship between a scientist and a president who once bonded over their shared New York City roots and love of sports, but whose rapport has long since disintegrated over their differences on face mask policy, state reopening strategies and the use of antimalarial drugs to treat covid-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.


This really is the kicker from the article that appeared this weekend.

Even though his suggestions have been largely ignored, Fauci has not complained that he does not get in to see the president, according to one of the officials.

Trump is also galled by Fauci’s approval ratings. A recent New York Times/Siena College poll showed that 67 percent of voters trusted Fauci for information on the coronavirus, compared with 26 percent who trusted Trump.

The internal turmoil and troubled national response have taken a toll on Fauci, those close to him say. He is exasperated that states and individuals are not following the recommendations of experts, such as social distancing and wearing face coverings, said David Barr, a longtime HIV/AIDS activist who has known Fauci for 30 years

Trump continues to be disinterested in actually running the country and continues to focus on his power and wealth and that of other wealthy Americans.

I’ve known several friends that had Covid 19 and lost their antibodies after several successful donations convalescent plasma.  Studies are beginning to show this might be the norm.  I swear I had this disease back in March but when tested in June showed no antibodies .  Can we trust this testing?

From the UK Guardian: “Immunity to Covid-19 could be lost in months, UK study suggests. Exclusive: King’s College London team found steep drops in patients’ antibody levels three months after infection.  This basically means forget even a small chance of “herd immunity”.

People who have recovered from Covid-19 may lose their immunity to the disease within months, according to research suggesting the virus could reinfect people year after year, like common colds.

In the first longitudinal study of its kind, scientists analysed the immune response of more than 90 patients and healthcare workers at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS foundation trust and found levels of antibodies that can destroy the virus peaked about three weeks after the onset of symptoms then swiftly declined.

Blood tests revealed that while 60% of people marshalled a “potent” antibody response at the height of their battle with the virus, only 17% retained the same potency three months later. Antibody levels fell as much as 23-fold over the period. In some cases, they became undetectable.

“People are producing a reasonable antibody response to the virus, but it’s waning over a short period of time and depending on how high your peak is, that determines how long the antibodies are staying around,” said Dr Katie Doores, lead author on the study at King’s College London.

The study has implications for the development of a vaccine, and for the pursuit of “herd immunity” in the community over time.

The immune system has multiple ways to fight the coronavirus but if antibodies are the main line of defence, the findings suggested people could become reinfected in seasonal waves and that vaccines may not protect them for long.

And I fully relate to this headline from Bloomberg: “Covid-19 Reinvades U.S. States That Already Beat It Back Once.” Our governor closed down bars this weekend.  Now if he would just stop the STR invasion we might get back to normal.  Covid Zombies from Texas are in the one on the river side of my house.

The first states to endure the coronavirus this spring hoped the worst would be behind them.

Instead, the virus is coming back.

Many places that suffered most in the first wave of infections, including California, Louisiana, Michigan and Washington state, are seeing case counts climb again after months of declines. It’s not just a matter of more testing. Hospitalizations and, in some places, deaths are rising, too.

The disease is raging — Florida reported 15,300 cases Sunday, the biggest single-day increase of the U.S. pandemic — and experts say the resurgence in the original battlegrounds has common causes. They include a population no longer willing to stay inside, Republicans who refuse face masks as a political statement, street protests over police violence and young people convinced the virus won’t seriously hurt them.

And even though some of the states led by Democratic governors delayed restarting their economies until weeks after more eager peers like Georgia, they still jumped too soon, critics say.

“I don’t think there’s any question about that anymore. Even in California, we opened up too fast,” said John Swartzberg, a doctor who is a clinical professor emeritus at the University of California at Berkeley.

So far, the rebound hasn’t reached the states hardest hit by the first wave: New York, New Jersey and Massachusetts. But New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said Friday that it’s on its way.

This is why we need and needed a Federal Response.  However, until the nation shakes off Trumpism we are likely to only see more spikes and deaths.  I do feel like Doctor Gloom and Doom today, but after watching my state have to back step like this after all the hard work we did and then be invaded by the Covid Zombie States around us really has me in a fit of pique.

I am staying my ass home for at least another 2 – 3 weeks and feel fortunate to be able to do that.  Meanwhile,  I just got my notification from HHS that my Medicare starts on November 1.  Please don’t let the Republicans fuck up any more of our programs meant to protect the least among us.  The Elderly–of which I am becoming a member–have been suffering a lot from this plague and needlessly at this point.

We can’t even get some nonpolitical behavior on the need for facemasks.  From Gallup: “Americans’ Face Mask Usage Varies Greatly by Demographics”.  We have a mandatory mask wearing law here in Louisiana now for all the damn Parishes even the ones that think GAWD protects them as his special white angels.

It has been more than three months since the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) reversed course and recommended that Americans wear face masks in public to limit the spread of the coronavirus. Gallup has been measuring U.S. adults’ use of face masks since early April and has found nearly nine in 10 say they have used one in the past week. Yet, new data on how often masks are being used reveals that less than half of Americans are heeding health officials’ guidance and always covering their nose and mouth when in public, especially when social distancing is difficult to maintain.

Forty-four percent of U.S. adults say they “always” wear a mask when outside their homes, and 28% say they do so “very often.” At the same time, three in 10 report doing so less often, including 11% “sometimes,” 4% “rarely” and 14% “never.”

These latest findings are from the probability-based online Gallup Panel survey conducted June 29-July 5, as COVID-19 cases were surging in several states, including Florida, Texas, Arizona and California. With cases nationwide continuing to spike, many public health officials and politicians are imploring Americans to wear masks. Notably, a number of states recently began to mandate the use of masks when in public. Yet, it may fall on deaf ears for some Americans who are resistant to using them.

While majorities of women (54%), Democrats (61%), Northeasterners (54%), and those with annual household incomes under $36,000 (51%) say they always use masks outside their homes, their counterparts do so less often. Still, with just one exception, majorities in each of these subgroups — as well as education and age groups — say they wear a mask in public at least very often.

The one exception is Republicans, among whom a majority say they wear masks infrequently — either sometimes (18%), rarely (9%) or never (27%). Although President Donald Trump has been reluctant to wear one in public, other Republican leaders have come out in support of using them.

So, let’s agree on this.  Republicans are trying to kill us.  They want to keep us from voting.  They want the planet and all the animals to die along with us.  Christianity under Republican White Nationalism is basically a twisted Death Cult with no real moral attachment to the biblical Jesus.

What’s on  your reading and blogging list today?