No silver bullets for this pandemic (Update #4)

Updates

  1. Originally published, October 21, 2020, at 10:57 pm.
  2. October 21, 2020, 11:44 pm:
    • So I was wondering about possible evictions, specifically about two vacant apartments in my building, at my apartment complex.[1] Guess what? The Alden South Hills is pursuing 44 evictions. A magistrate judge has already refused some of them, giving tenants additional time to pay.[2] I have always paid my rent here on time, but in my experience, with regard to rent payments, the management does adopt a rather threatening tone, carrying an undertone that if you live in this complex, you are a deadbeat, so it’s not at all unreasonable to suspect that some vacancies in the complex may be to avoid being evicted and thus to avoid the difficulties of finding a new apartment when evictions have been recorded.
  3. October 22, 2020, 8:55 am:
    • I am revising the language in update #2 to make it a bit more complete. The revised text appears there.
  4. October 22, 2020, 10:20 am:
    • It’s a stretch, and the author even says it’s a stretch, but it’s possible to interpret the Third Amendment, prohibiting the quartering of soldiers in people’s homes, as guaranteeing a right to protection from contagious disease. It seems that smallpox is an important part of the historical context for that amendment, where British soldiers had deliberately passed the disease to American Indians, and not so deliberately to colonists.[3]

Pandemic

There is a new blog post entitled, “About that promised COVID-19 vaccine: Sorry, we still aren’t getting out of this pandemic anytime soon.

David Salisbury, “If you’re pinning your hopes on a Covid vaccine, here’s a dose of realism,” Guardian, October 21, 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/oct/21/covid-vaccine-immunisation-protection

Melody Schreiber, “A Covid-19 Vaccine Doesn’t Need to Be Perfect,” New Republic, October 21, 2020, https://newrepublic.com/article/159868/covid-19-vaccine-efficacy-perfect

Alexander Zhang, “The Forgotten Third Amendment Could Give Pandemic-Struck America a Way Forward,” Atlantic, October 21, 2020, https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/10/could-third-amendment-protect-against-infection/616791/


Housing

Ryan Deto, “Pittsburgh-area apartment complex The Alden South Hills seeking large-scale evictions,” Pittsburgh City Paper, October 21, 2020, https://www.pghcitypaper.com/pittsburgh/pittsburgh-area-apartment-complex-the-alden-south-hills-seeking-large-scale-evictions/Content?oid=18223682


  1. [1]David Benfell, “Not even a euphemism: ‘Houseless,’” Not Housebroken, October 18, 2020, https://disunitedstates.org/2020/10/18/not-even-a-euphemism-houseless/
  2. [2]Ryan Deto, “Pittsburgh-area apartment complex The Alden South Hills seeking large-scale evictions,” Pittsburgh City Paper, October 21, 2020, https://www.pghcitypaper.com/pittsburgh/pittsburgh-area-apartment-complex-the-alden-south-hills-seeking-large-scale-evictions/Content?oid=18223682
  3. [3]Alexander Zhang, “The Forgotten Third Amendment Could Give Pandemic-Struck America a Way Forward,” Atlantic, October 21, 2020, https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/10/could-third-amendment-protect-against-infection/616791/

The third surge of COVID-19

Pandemic

There is a new blog post entitled, “The lesson of the pandemic: An incremental approach won’t save us.”

Karen Kaplan, “U.S. deaths are about 300,000 higher than expected since the coronavirus arrived,” Los Angeles Times, October 20, 2020, https://www.latimes.com/science/story/2020-10-20/excess-deaths-in-united-states-since-coronavirus-arrived


Academia

As I was out driving, I noticed one day that banners around the Carnegie-Mellon University campus focused not on academics or scholarship, but on social connection, with lots of smiling (unmasked and not socially-distanced) faces.

But [Soneida] Rodriguez, the resident adviser, said those concessions [in response to an RA strike] haven’t fixed an underlying problem: The [University of Michigan] appears more concerned with giving students the full “college experience” than with protecting public health, she said.

“They’re trying to justify the tuition price,” she said.[1]

Universities are supposed to be sanctuaries for the dissemination and acquisition of knowledge. At least coincidentally with the political embrace of neoliberal dogma, they’ve taken on an entirely different role in what was already an anti-intellectual society.

This is a problem anyway. In a pandemic, it’s an even bigger one.[2]

Michael Vasquez, “‘It’s Negligence’: U. of Michigan Students Ordered to ‘Stay in Place’ After Covid-19 Cases Surge,” Chronicle of Higher Education, October 20, 2020, https://www.chronicle.com/article/its-negligence-u-of-michigan-students-ordered-to-stay-in-place-as-covid-19-cases-surge


Housekeeping

I’ve been stressing out lately. As I put it recently,

I haven’t been sleeping well. Between the difficult navigation and the asshole drivers in Pittsburgh,[3] combined with road conditions that are significantly increasing my maintenance costs, I’m terrified the whole time I’m driving, which I do for Uber and Lyft because it’s the only job I can get even with a Ph.D.[4] I’m stressing out. My heart is pounding when I’m out. And when I wake up, I am short of sleep, unable to sleep more.[5]

But a couple of interesting things have happened. First, when I had to replace that last set of tires, after a mere 21,000 miles, I went ahead and pulled out the money to upgrade the sound system in the car. That is now done. The music does help soothe the savage beast of stress from a situation I cannot adapt to and cannot change.

Then a headlight went out. I’ve been going through a lot of bulbs since I got to Pittsburgh and every time one goes out, I lose time that I could spend working. I was feeling like this was costing me too much money. I stopped back at the place where I got the sound system upgraded and, sure enough, they’ve been able to replace a bunch of the bulbs with LEDs. The LED headlights significantly improve my ability to see at night, even to help avoid potholes, hopefully sparing my front end from some damage.

The LED turn signals improve the visibility of those signals; other drivers are more apt to see and respond to the signals. The backup camera that came with the sound system and the dramatically brighter LED backup lights make it a lot easier and safer when I need to turn around in narrow places, of which in Pittsburgh there are many.

A lot of it, however, feels like status. The LED lights convey an impression of a more expensive car than the 2007 Toyota Camry Hybrid actually is. In Pittsburgh, that seems to matter. I’m getting a lot less harassment from obnoxious drivers.

It’s still stressful. I’m still in that situation I cannot adapt to and cannot change. But maybe my blood pressure isn’t so high now.


  1. [1]Michael Vasquez, “‘It’s Negligence’: U. of Michigan Students Ordered to ‘Stay in Place’ After Covid-19 Cases Surge,” Chronicle of Higher Education, October 20, 2020, https://www.chronicle.com/article/its-negligence-u-of-michigan-students-ordered-to-stay-in-place-as-covid-19-cases-surge
  2. [2]Carl T. Bergstrom, “The CDC Is Wrong,” Chronicle of Higher Education, July 14, 2020, https://www.chronicle.com/article/The-CDC-Is-Wrong/249174; Francie Diep, “More Colleges Are Responding to Covid-19 Surges With 2-Week Quarantines. Do They Work?” Chronicle of Higher Education, September 17, 2020, https://www.chronicle.com/article/more-colleges-are-responding-to-covid-19-surges-with-2-week-quarantines-do-they-work; Tim Elfrink, “‘We’ve got to do better than this’: College students raise alarm by packing bars, avoiding masks,” Washington Post, August 17, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2020/08/17/alabama-georgia-college-parties-covid/; Lindsay Ellis, “Colleges Hoped for an In-Person Fall. Now the Dream is Crumbling,” Chronicle of Higher Education, July 20, 2020, https://www.chronicle.com/article/colleges-hoped-for-an-in-person-fall-now-the-dream-is-crumbling; Audrey Williams June, “Over 450 Colleges Are in Coronavirus Hot Spots,” Chronicle of Higher Education, July 9, 2020, https://www.chronicle.com/article/Over-450-Colleges-Are-in/249156; Robert Kelchen, “Colleges Aren’t Reopening in the Fall,” Chronicle of Higher Education, May 18, 2020, https://www.chronicle.com/article/Colleges-Aren-t-Reopening-in/248803; Eric Kelderman, “Colleges Are Making Late Calls to Shut Campuses. Is It All About the Money?” Chronicle of Higher Education, August 25, 2020, https://www.chronicle.com/article/colleges-are-making-late-calls-to-shut-campuses-is-it-all-about-the-money; Vivian S. Lee, Vindell Washington, and Robert M. Califf, “The Bad Science of Reopening,” Chronicle of Higher Education, July 28, 2020, https://www.chronicle.com/article/the-bad-science-of-reopening; Katherine Mangan, “Health Experts Warn Colleges Not to Send Students Home. But What if Quarantine Spaces Run Out?” Chronicle of Higher Education, September 7, 2020, https://www.chronicle.com/article/health-experts-warn-colleges-not-to-send-students-home-but-what-if-they-run-out-of-quarantine-space; Kery Murakami, “Fauci Urges Colleges Not to Send Students Home,” Inside Higher Ed, September 4, 2020, https://www.insidehighered.com/quicktakes/2020/09/04/fauci-urges-colleges-not-send-students-home; Notre Dame University, “Notre Dame enacts two weeks of remote instruction,” August 18, 2020, https://news.nd.edu/news/notre-dame-enacts-two-weeks-of-remote-instruction/; Vimal Patel, “A Grad Strike, a Court Fight, a No-Confidence Vote: U. of Michigan Struggles Over Its Campus Reopening,” Chronicle of Higher Education, September 16, 2020, https://www.chronicle.com/article/a-grad-strike-a-court-fight-a-no-confidence-vote-u-of-michigan-struggles-over-its-campus-reopening; Colleen Shalby, “California colleges tried to prepare for COVID-19 outbreaks. It didn’t work,” Los Angeles Times, October 7, 2020, https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2020-10-07/as-californias-universities-reopen-off-campus-activity-contributes-to-spike-in-covid-19-cases; Andy Thomason, “After Only One Week, Chapel Hill Abandons In-Person Fall Semester,” Chronicle of Higher Education, August 17, 2020, https://www.chronicle.com/article/after-only-one-week-chapel-hill-abandons-in-person-fall-semester; Michael Vasquez, “‘It’s Negligence’: U. of Michigan Students Ordered to ‘Stay in Place’ After Covid-19 Cases Surge,” Chronicle of Higher Education, October 20, 2020, https://www.chronicle.com/article/its-negligence-u-of-michigan-students-ordered-to-stay-in-place-as-covid-19-cases-surge
  3. [3]David Benfell, “Pittsburgh driving for the uninitiated,” Irregular Bullshit, n.d., https://disunitedstates.com/pittsburgh/pittsburgh-driving-for-the-uninitiated/
  4. [4]David Benfell, “About my job hunt,” Not Housebroken, n.d., https://disunitedstates.org/about-my-job-hunt/
  5. [5]David Benfell, “Normalized ‘property rights,’” Not Housebroken, September 23, 2020, https://disunitedstates.org/2020/09/23/normalized-property-rights/

The Pennsylvania Legislature should be thrown in jail

Pennsylvania

Killing people is a crime, but even as COVID-19 case counts surge,[1] the Pennsylvania legislature is still desperately trying to spread the disease.[2] The capitalist god demands human sacrifice[3] and the legislature is eager to oblige.

Megan Guza, “Covid resurgence is here, Pa. officials say after 14 days of new cases topping 1,000,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 19, 2020, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/covid-resurgence-is-here-state-officials-say-after-14-days-of-new-cases-topping-1000/

Stephen Caruso, “Pa. House falls two votes shy of overturning Wolf restaurant occupancy veto,” Pennsylvania Capital-Star, October 20, 2020, https://www.penncapital-star.com/covid-19/pa-house-falls-two-votes-shy-of-overturning-wolf-restaurant-occupancy-veto/


  1. [1]Megan Guza, “Covid resurgence is here, Pa. officials say after 14 days of new cases topping 1,000,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 19, 2020, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/covid-resurgence-is-here-state-officials-say-after-14-days-of-new-cases-topping-1000/; Samson X. Horne, “Pennsylvania reports 2nd-highest covid-19 case count,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 17, 2020, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-10-05/supreme-court-rejects-challenge-to-pennsylvania-shutdown-order
  2. [2]Stephen Caruso, “Pa. House falls two votes shy of overturning Wolf restaurant occupancy veto,” Pennsylvania Capital-Star, October 20, 2020, https://www.penncapital-star.com/covid-19/pa-house-falls-two-votes-shy-of-overturning-wolf-restaurant-occupancy-veto/
  3. [3]David Benfell, “The capitalist death cult,” Not Housebroken, March 27, 2020, https://disunitedstates.org/2020/03/27/the-capitalist-death-cult/; David Benfell, “An impatient capitalist god demands human sacrifice. Now,” Not Housebroken, April 17, 2020, https://disunitedstates.org/2020/04/15/an-impatient-capitalist-god-demands-human-sacrifice-now/; David Benfell, “Surprise! Surprise! The capitalist god is greedy!” Not Housebroken, May 25, 2020, https://disunitedstates.org/2020/05/23/surprise-surprise-the-capitalist-god-is-greedy/

What we won’t learn

Pandemic

Derek Thompson’s idea is that we should learn from other countries.[1] This would be hilarious, because the exceptional Amerikkka never learns from anybody, except, of course, that people are dying from COVID-19, perhaps at a lower rate, but still dying.[2]

Derek Thompson, “The COVID-19 Fall Surge Is Here. We Can Stop It,” Atlantic, October 12, 2020, https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/10/how-keep-fall-surge-becoming-winter-catastrophe/616674/

Antonia Noori Farzan et al. “U.S. surpasses 64,000 new coronavirus infections two days in a row for first time since late July,” Washington Post, October 16, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2020/10/16/coronavirus-covid-live-updates-us/

Samson X. Horne, “Pennsylvania reports 2nd-highest covid-19 case count,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 17, 2020, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-10-05/supreme-court-rejects-challenge-to-pennsylvania-shutdown-order

Megan Guza, “Covid resurgence is here, Pa. officials say after 14 days of new cases topping 1,000,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 19, 2020, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/covid-resurgence-is-here-state-officials-say-after-14-days-of-new-cases-topping-1000/


Donald Trump

Jonathan Chait thinks Donald Trump might be well-advised to leave the country if he loses[3]—his logic might apply even at the end of a second term—and Josh Barro pushes the idea that Trump is bored by governing to its logical extreme in the contingency that Trump loses the election convincingly.[4] Dan Alexander says Trump has $900 million in debt coming due during what would be his second term and no apparent way to pay it short of selling properties in deals that might pose conflicts of interest.[5]

Jonathan Chait, “Trump Says He Might Leave the Country If He Loses. Does He Mean It?” New York, October 17, 2020, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2020/10/trump-may-leave-country-if-he-loses-prison-criminal-prosecution.html

Dan Alexander, “Trump Will Have $900 Million Of Loans Coming Due In His Second Term If He’s Reelected,” Forbes, October 19, 2020, https://www.forbes.com/sites/danalexander/2020/10/19/trump-will-have-900-million-of-loans-coming-due-in-his-second-term-if-hes-reelected/

Josh Barro, “What If Trump Is All Too Eager to Give up Power?” New York, October 19, 2020, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2020/10/what-if-trump-is-all-too-eager-to-give-up-power.html


  1. [1]Derek Thompson, “The COVID-19 Fall Surge Is Here. We Can Stop It,” Atlantic, October 12, 2020, https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/10/how-keep-fall-surge-becoming-winter-catastrophe/616674/
  2. [2]Antonia Noori Farzan et al. “U.S. surpasses 64,000 new coronavirus infections two days in a row for first time since late July,” Washington Post, October 16, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2020/10/16/coronavirus-covid-live-updates-us/; Derek Thompson, “The COVID-19 Fall Surge Is Here. We Can Stop It,” Atlantic, October 12, 2020, https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/10/how-keep-fall-surge-becoming-winter-catastrophe/616674/
  3. [3]Jonathan Chait, “Trump Says He Might Leave the Country If He Loses. Does He Mean It?” New York, October 17, 2020, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2020/10/trump-may-leave-country-if-he-loses-prison-criminal-prosecution.html
  4. [4]Josh Barro, “What If Trump Is All Too Eager to Give up Power?” New York, October 19, 2020, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2020/10/what-if-trump-is-all-too-eager-to-give-up-power.html
  5. [5]Dan Alexander, “Trump Will Have $900 Million Of Loans Coming Due In His Second Term If He’s Reelected,” Forbes, October 19, 2020, https://www.forbes.com/sites/danalexander/2020/10/19/trump-will-have-900-million-of-loans-coming-due-in-his-second-term-if-hes-reelected/

Evil. Just evil.

It’s mostly just bullshit out there now. I’ve been breaking my own rules and engaging with ‘shitlibs,’ that is, Democratic Party apologists, who can’t imagine that their party is evil. The big takeaway would be that if things continue to get worse, whatever effort any politicians may make, whatever they may say, is not enough; at best, it functions to enable the evil, covering its left flank.

In the meantime, there’s a new blog post entitled, “Not even a euphemism: ‘Houseless’.”

Killing for Donald Trump

Donald Trump

Despite receiving an extraordinary level of care and apparently—we can’t be sure—recovering from what seems to have been a serious case of COVID-19,[1] Donald Trump’s rhetoric and practice are largely unchanged[2] and his strategy for dealing with the pandemic is largely nonexistent, condemning millions to death in an alleged push for “herd immunity.” Trump received the best of care; the rest of us should settle for something less.[3]

T]his campaign push by [Donald] Trump to consign millions to death [with a “herd immunity” strategy] as a means of papering over his failures is coming from a man who caught COVID, and likely only survived it because of the medical knowledge gleaned from those who were killed by his incompetence in those first bleak months of the crisis. “Trump is still breathing because of the medical data gathered from people he allowed to die,” I wrote on Tuesday. I stand by that assessment.

Trump is alive because he got the best treatment science can deliver, buttressed by data gathered from the corpses he has already caused. Upon recovery, he declared his intent to abandon millions more to a choking, solitary death so he can keep his job and salvage his junkyard ego.[4]

William Rivers Pitt, “Trump Got the Best COVID Treatment. For the Rest of Us He Wants ‘Herd Immunity,’” Truthout, October 15, 2020, https://truthout.org/articles/trump-got-the-best-covid-treatment-then-declared-intent-to-abandon-millions/


Militia

The trend leads [Alexander Reid Ross] and others in his research milieu to anticipate a more serious degree of violence in the days leading up to the election, even as the overall number of incidents dwindle. Some of the energies of would-be vigilantes may be getting diverted into caravans and rallies in support of President Trump, Ross said, pushing more extremist elements in the movement to intensify their actions. . . .

“The people who are talking about this issue now are harder-core than people who were even a month ago, which does not portend well for what we’re about to face,” [Heidi] Beirich said. “I sadly don’t think we’ll get through Nov. 3 without at least one major lone wolf attack.”[5]

Some also contemplate the possibility of violence if elections results are disputed.[6]

What they don’t seem to be forecasting is the sort of uprising that I fear.[7] This is “at least one major lone wolf attack,”[8] not entire right-wing militia groups taking to the streets, initiating the race war they have so long sought.[9] I think that the paleoconservative thinking may very well be that if Donald Trump loses, white supremacist militia groups may perceive that “it’s now or never,” that this will be their last chance for that race war, that if they fail to act, that “Blacks and browns” will take power at white expense, that accordingly, they have nothing to lose.

Laura Bliss and Marie Patino, “Tracking the Shifting Shape of Far-Right Political Violence,” CityLab, October 16, 2020, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-10-16/is-far-right-political-violence-getting-worse


  1. [1]Associated Press, “Trump said to be improving but next 48 hours ‘critical,’” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 3, 2020, https://triblive.com/news/politics-election/concerning-signs-in-trumps-care-despite-word-hes-doing-ok/; Derek Hawkins et al., “President’s blood oxygen levels dropped twice in recent days, doctors say,” Washington Post, October 4, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/elections/2020/10/04/trump-covid-live-updates/; Melissa Healy, “Trump received dexamethasone for COVID-19. Here’s what that says about his condition,” Los Angeles Times, October 5, 2020, https://www.latimes.com/science/story/2020-10-05/trump-dexamethasone-covid-19-condition; Soo Kim, “Donald Trump ‘Gasping for Air’ Video Raises Questions About President’s Health,” Newsweek, October 6, 2020, https://www.newsweek.com/coronavirus-donald-trump-breathing-difficulty-gasping-air-white-house-hospital-discharge-1536598; Laura King and Chris Megerian, “Trump stages drive-by for supporters after doctors disclose more serious symptoms,” Los Angeles Times, October 4, 2020, https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2020-10-04/trump-receiving-powerful-lung-drug-doctors-disclose-revealing-more-serious-symptoms; Gina Kolata and Apoorva Mandavilli, “Trump’s Covid Treatments Are Aimed at Preventing Severe Illness,” New York Times, October 3, 2020, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/03/health/Covid-trump-treatments.html; Maeve Reston and Gregory Krieg, “White House sows confusion about Trump’s condition as source tells reporters next 48 hours will be critical,” CNN, October 3, 2020, https://www.cnn.com/2020/10/03/politics/donald-trump-coronavirus-walter-reed/index.html; Felicia Sonmez et al., “Trump returns to White House from hospital; may not be ‘out of the woods,’ doctor says,” Washington Post, October 5, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/elections/2020/10/05/trump-biden-live-updates/
  2. [2]Laura King and Chris Megerian, “Trump stages drive-by for supporters after doctors disclose more serious symptoms,” Los Angeles Times, October 4, 2020, https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2020-10-04/trump-receiving-powerful-lung-drug-doctors-disclose-revealing-more-serious-symptoms; Josh Margolin and Lucien Bruggeman, “34 people connected to White House, more than previously known, infected by coronavirus: Internal FEMA memo,” ABC News, October 7, 2020, https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/34-people-connected-white-house-previously-infected-coronavirus/story?id=73487381
  3. [3]William Rivers Pitt, “Trump Got the Best COVID Treatment. For the Rest of Us He Wants ‘Herd Immunity,’” Truthout, October 15, 2020, https://truthout.org/articles/trump-got-the-best-covid-treatment-then-declared-intent-to-abandon-millions/
  4. [4]William Rivers Pitt, “Trump Got the Best COVID Treatment. For the Rest of Us He Wants ‘Herd Immunity,’” Truthout, October 15, 2020, https://truthout.org/articles/trump-got-the-best-covid-treatment-then-declared-intent-to-abandon-millions/
  5. [5]Laura Bliss and Marie Patino, “Tracking the Shifting Shape of Far-Right Political Violence,” CityLab, October 16, 2020, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-10-16/is-far-right-political-violence-getting-worse
  6. [6]Laura Bliss and Marie Patino, “Tracking the Shifting Shape of Far-Right Political Violence,” CityLab, October 16, 2020, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-10-16/is-far-right-political-violence-getting-worse
  7. [7]David Benfell, “Donald Trump’s ‘brown shirts,’” Not Housebroken, October 1, 2020, https://disunitedstates.org/2020/08/30/donald-trumps-brown-shirts/; David Benfell, “The very scary way to four more years,” Not Housebroken, October 13, 2020, https://disunitedstates.org/2020/09/25/the-very-scary-way-to-four-more-years/
  8. [8]Heidi Beirich, quoted in Laura Bliss and Marie Patino, “Tracking the Shifting Shape of Far-Right Political Violence,” CityLab, October 16, 2020, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-10-16/is-far-right-political-violence-getting-worse
  9. [9]Michael Kimmel, “America’s angriest white men: Up close with racism, rage and Southern supremacy,” Salon, November 17, 2013, https://www.salon.com/control/2013/11/17/americas_angriest_white_men_up_close_with_racism_rage_and_southern_supremacy/; Luke Mogelson, “The Militias Against Masks,” New Yorker, August 17, 2020, https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2020/08/24/the-militias-against-masks

Millions more in poverty as elites continue to fail

Recession/Depression

It’s worth noting for the record that negotiations for economic relief for the recession or depression caused by the pandemic lockdowns are still stuck,[1] with little prospect for a breakthrough:[2]

source on threadreaderapp.com
Archived at 2020-10-15 07:31:24

Jeff Stein Profile picture

Jeff Stein

Follow @JStein_WaPo

Twitter logo

13 Oct, 2 tweets, 1 min read

Bookmark Save as PDF My Authors

A reminder that no stimulus deal at all means:

– Tens of thousands of airline workers get laid off

– No federal supplement unemployment benefits for +20 million ppl

– Severe cuts/layoffs for restaurant, hotel workers

– Checks 2.0 don’t go out to millions facing pay cuts

Pelosi insisted today to Wolf Blitzer that a deal would get done, but my sources and the sources of most reporters tracking talks are very bearish on anything happening before Nov. 3. What is Dems’ leverage after the election?[3]

Millions of people are now in poverty[4] because elites really don’t have a stake in keeping them out of poverty.[5]

Jeff Stein, [Twitter thread], Thread Reader App, October 13, 2020, https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1316133318027608064.html

Jason DeParle, “8 Million Have Slipped Into Poverty Since May as Federal Aid Has Dried Up,” New York Times, October 15, 2020, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/15/us/politics/federal-aid-poverty-levels.html


  1. [1]Jason DeParle, “8 Million Have Slipped Into Poverty Since May as Federal Aid Has Dried Up,” New York Times, October 15, 2020, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/15/us/politics/federal-aid-poverty-levels.html
  2. [2]Jeff Stein, [Twitter thread], Thread Reader App, October 13, 2020, https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1316133318027608064.html
  3. [3]Jeff Stein, [Twitter thread], Thread Reader App, October 13, 2020, https://threadreaderapp.com/thread/1316133318027608064.html
  4. [4]Jason DeParle, “8 Million Have Slipped Into Poverty Since May as Federal Aid Has Dried Up,” New York Times, October 15, 2020, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/10/15/us/politics/federal-aid-poverty-levels.html
  5. [5]David Benfell, “The mysterious expectation that elites give a damn,” Not Housebroken, October 7, 2020, https://disunitedstates.org/2020/08/01/the-mysterious-expectation-that-elites-give-a-damn/

The betrayal of justice

Supreme Court

There is a new blog post entitled, “Justice and Amy Coney Barrett’s Supreme Court nomination.”

Maanvi Singh, “Kamala Harris grilling prompts doubtful claim from Amy Coney Barrett,” Guardian, October 13, 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/oct/13/kamala-harris-amy-coney-barrett-senate-hearing

Kery Murakami, “Not Everyone at Notre Dame Supports Barrett,” Inside Higher Ed, October 14, 2020, https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2020/10/14/more-100-notre-dame-faculty-sign-statement-opposing-barrett-appointment-supreme


I warned about Bloody November. The right-wing militia groups are already hatching plots.

Militia

I’ve been warning that right wing militia might take up arms on Donald Trump’s behalf.[1] My fears are already being realized.[2]

Kayla Ruble, Laura Vozzella, and Devlin Barrett, “Whitmer plotters also discussed kidnapping Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, FBI agent testifies,” Washington Post, October 13, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/ralph-northam-gretchen-witmer-kidnapping-plot/2020/10/13/26b4e31a-0d5f-11eb-b1e8-16b59b92b36d_story.html


  1. [1]David Benfell, “Bloody November,” Not Housebroken, September 9, 2020, https://disunitedstates.org/2020/09/08/bloody-november/; David Benfell, “The very scary way to four more years,” Not Housebroken, October 1, 2020, https://disunitedstates.org/2020/09/25/the-very-scary-way-to-four-more-years/
  2. [2]Moriah Balingit, “Armed militia helped a Michigan barbershop open, a coronavirus defiance that puts Republican lawmakers in a bind,” Washington Post, May 12, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/coronavirus-michigan-republicans-whitmer/2020/05/12/54975e1a-9466-11ea-82b4-c8db161ff6e5_story.html; Eric Cortellessa, “US far-right extremists are now calling social distancing a Nazi policy,” Times of Israel, April 17, 2020, https://www.timesofisrael.com/us-far-right-extremists-are-now-calling-social-distancing-a-nazi-policy/; Mike Giglio, “A Pro-Trump Militant Group Has Recruited Thousands of Police, Soldiers, and Veterans,” Atlantic, November 2020, https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2020/11/right-wing-militias-civil-war/616473/; Bryan Armen Graham, “‘Swastikas and nooses’: governor slams ‘racism’ of Michigan lockdown protest,” Guardian, May 3, 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/may/03/michigan-gretchen-whitmer-lockdown-protest-racism; Fred Kaplan, “Is America in the Early Stages of Armed Insurgency?” Slate, September 8, 2020, https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/09/america-insurgency-chaos-trump-violence.html; Robert Mackey, “Neo-Fascist Proud Boys Exult Over Trump Telling Them to ‘Stand By,’ Not Stand Down,” Intercept, September 30, 2020, https://theintercept.com/2020/09/30/neo-fascist-proud-boys-exult-trump-telling-stand-not-stand/; Mary B. McCord, “Armed Militias Are Taking Trump’s Civil War Tweets Seriously,” Lawfare, October 2, 2019, https://www.lawfareblog.com/armed-militias-are-taking-trumps-civil-war-tweets-seriously; Luke Mogelson, “The Militias Against Masks,” New Yorker, August 17, 2020, https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2020/08/24/the-militias-against-masks; Joshua Partlow, “Politics at the point of a gun,” Washington Post, July 28, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2020/07/28/conservative-armed-militias-protests-coronavirus/; Rashawn Ray and Rebecca Shankman, “How COVID-19 is changing the gun debate,” Brookings, June 17, 2020, https://www.brookings.edu/blog/fixgov/2020/06/17/how-covid-19-is-changing-the-gun-debate/; Kayla Ruble, Laura Vozzella, and Devlin Barrett, “Whitmer plotters also discussed kidnapping Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam, FBI agent testifies,” Washington Post, October 13, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/ralph-northam-gretchen-witmer-kidnapping-plot/2020/10/13/26b4e31a-0d5f-11eb-b1e8-16b59b92b36d_story.html; Kelly Weill, “Sixteen ‘Boogaloo’ Followers Have Been Busted in 7 Days,” Daily Beast, October 9, 2020, https://www.thedailybeast.com/with-the-gov-gretchen-whitmer-busts-16-boogaloo-followers-have-been-busted-in-7-days/; Matt Zapotosky, Devlin Barrett, and Abigail Hauslohner, “FBI charges six who it says plotted to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, as seven more who wanted to ignite civil war face state charges,” Washington Post, October 8, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/michigan-governor-kidnap-plot/2020/10/08/0032e206-0980-11eb-9be6-cf25fb429f1a_story.html

About that immunity thing

COVID-19

If there is such a thing as immunity to COVID-19 through antibodies (such as a vaccine might stimulate production of), it might be very—this is not a good thing—specific:

The patient, a 25-year-old Nevada man, was infected with two distinct variants of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes Covid-19, within a 48-day time frame.[1] . . . “We need more research to understand how long immunity may last for people exposed to SARS-CoV-2 and why some of these second infections, while rare, are presenting as more severe.”[2]

I’m hoping this T-cell thing[3] that I think protects me from so many varieties of creeping crud is for real.

France 24, “Doubts over immunity after man gets Covid second time, with more severe symptoms,” October 13, 2020, https://www.france24.com/en/20201013-doubts-over-immunity-after-man-gets-covid-second-time-with-more-severe-symptoms


  1. [1]France 24, “Doubts over immunity after man gets Covid second time, with more severe symptoms,” October 13, 2020, https://www.france24.com/en/20201013-doubts-over-immunity-after-man-gets-covid-second-time-with-more-severe-symptoms
  2. [2]Mark Pandori, quoted in France 24, “Doubts over immunity after man gets Covid second time, with more severe symptoms,” October 13, 2020, https://www.france24.com/en/20201013-doubts-over-immunity-after-man-gets-covid-second-time-with-more-severe-symptoms
  3. [3]Sanjay Gupta and Andrea Kane, “Do some people have protection against the coronavirus?” CNN, August 2, 2020, https://www.cnn.com/2020/08/02/health/gupta-coronavirus-t-cell-cross-reactivity-immunity-wellness/index.html