Capitalism’s ‘civil war’

Brexit

George Monbiot attributes Brexit to a ‘civil war’ between “warlord capitalists,” roughly mapping to capitalist libertarians and anarchocapitalists, and “housetrained capitalists,”[1] who don’t map neatly to any of the conservative tendencies I have identified. For the “housetrained capitalism,” I would be tempted to suggest neoconservatism, which takes the U.S. political and economic system as ideology; however, the impetus for neoliberalism, which neoconservatism embraces as a moral imperative,[2] comes directly from Monbiot’s “warlord capitalists,” but is corrupted by power.

Karl Marx’s mistake, identified by Michael Bakunin,[3] was to think that the machinery of government could be used to render itself obsolete and dismantle itself, leading to an egalitarian society, that is, communism, properly understood. (The Russian Revolution instead replaced one elite with another.[4]) Monbiot describes a “pollution paradox” and entirely misses that irony:

[Boris] Johnson’s government [in the United Kingdom] is what warlord money buys. It could be seen as the perfect expression of the Pollution Paradox, a concept that I think is essential to understanding our politics. What this means is that the dirtier or more damaging an enterprise is, the more money it must spend on politics to ensure it’s not regulated out of existence. As a result, political funding comes to be dominated by the most harmful companies and oligarchs, which then wield the greatest political influence. They crowd out their more accommodating rivals.

It isn’t just about pollution. Damaging enterprises with an interest in buying political results include banks developing exotic financial instruments; property developers who resent the planning laws; junk food companies; bosses seeking to destroy employment rights; and plutocrats hoping to avoid tax. It’s why we’ll never have a healthy democracy without a radical reform of campaign finance.[5]

It is capitalism, specifically Monbiot’s “warlord” kind, and even more specifically, the anarchocapitalist kind, that would dismantle government but replace it entirely with an economic hierarchy instead of communist egalitarianism.

George Monbiot, “Caught in the Crossfire,” November 27, 2020, https://www.monbiot.com/2020/11/27/caught-in-the-crossfire/


Donald Trump

So one question has been how a delusional raging narcissist understands having to leave the White House:


Police

Barack Obama seems never to have recovered from having to repudiate his pastor and having to claim a false equivalence between Henry Louis Gates, Jr., and a cop.


  1. [1]George Monbiot, “Caught in the Crossfire,” November 27, 2020, https://www.monbiot.com/2020/11/27/caught-in-the-crossfire/
  2. [2]David Benfell, “Conservative Views on Undocumented Migration” (doctoral dissertation, Saybrook, 2016). ProQuest (1765416126); Gertrude Himmelfarb, “Irving Kristol’s Neoconservative Persuasion,” Commentary 132, no. 2 (2011), 25-29; Garrett W. Sheldon, “The Ethical Heresies of The Neoconservatives,” Journal of Religious Thought 38, no. 2 (1981): 65-69.
  3. [3]Brian Morris, Bakunin: The Philosophy of Freedom (Montréal: Black Rose, 1993).
  4. [4]Emma Goldman, “There Is No Communism in Russia,” in Red Emma Speaks: An Emma Goldman Reader, ed. Alix Kates Shulman, 3rd ed. (Amherst, NY: Humanity, 1998), 405-420.
  5. [5]George Monbiot, “Caught in the Crossfire,” November 27, 2020, https://www.monbiot.com/2020/11/27/caught-in-the-crossfire/

Pennsylvania’s lunatic fringe legislature is at it again (Update #2)

There is a new blog post entitled, “Failing to answer the question: Why you should care about other people.”


Updates

  1. Originally published, November 28, 2020, 9:20 pm.
  2. November 29, 2020, 10:02 am:
    • The Pennsylvania Supreme Court dismissed with prejudice a suit brought by Republicans in the state legislature seeking to throw out ballots cast by mail or the entire election saying they had waited too long to challenge a law enabling “no excuse vote-by-mail.”[1]

      That resolution is the one that would withdraw certification of the election results.

      With the Supreme Court decision,[2] I infer that the resolution can be reintroduced and voted on. But Lieutenant Governor John Fetterman does not seem concerned. Meanwhile,

      In a separate blow to [Donald] Trump, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 3rd Circuit on Friday rejected his request for an emergency injunction to overturn the certification of Pennsylvania’s election results. That lawsuit claimed Republicans were illegally disadvantaged because some Democratic-leaning counties in the state allowed voters to correct administrative errors on their mail ballots.[3]

      The Circuit Court said the case had “no merit.”[4]

    • Speaking of Donald Trump’s delusions,

      The facts were indisputable: President [Donald] Trump had lost.

      But Trump refused to see it that way. Sequestered in the White House and brooding out of public view after his election defeat, rageful and at times delirious in a torrent of private conversations, Trump was, in the telling of one close adviser, like “Mad King George, muttering, ‘I won. I won. I won.’ ”

      However cleareyed Trump’s aides may have been about his loss to President-elect Joe Biden, many of them nonetheless indulged their boss and encouraged him to keep fighting with legal appeals. They were “happy to scratch his itch,” this adviser said. “If he thinks he won, it’s like, ‘Shh . . . we won’t tell him.’ ”[5]

      The Washington Post has something of an inside account of Trump’s attempts to overturn the election result.[6] It’s still really like the title of my previous blog post, “When it’s over but it isn’t.” It’s not that I think Trump will succeed. It’s that unless Trump now abandons his challenges, the twisting and turning still has a ways to go. He can, for example, appeal adverse decisions in Pennsylvania[7] to the U.S. Supreme Court. Do I think he would succeed there? No. I just don’t think the story is quite yet over.

    • I’ve received notifications from the Allegheny County Health Department imploring people to stay home on much the same grounds as Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf cites here.

      People just aren’t doing it. Traffic on the roads continues to increase. A lot of people are out and about. I had a couple of passengers last night going to a bar on Pittsburgh’s South Side who said they were going before the next lockdown.


Donald Trump

A bunch of Pennsylvania lawmakers have introduced a resolution that would withdraw the certification of the results of the November election.[8] Lieutenant Governor John Fetterman has mocked the effort:

The thread continues, ultimately to four tweets, including what appears to be a video of Pinnochio.

The legislative session ends day after tomorrow (November 30) and all bills and resolutions that haven’t passed die on that date. There’s been no move to put this resolution to a vote.[9]

This is the same legislature that is stonewalling legalized recreational marijuana,[10] has desperately attempted and failed to undo Governor Tom Wolf’s orders meant to contain the pandemic,[11] and takes any excuse it can find to put more guns[12] in the hands of white supremacists.

Jan Murphy, “26 state House Republicans call for withdrawing certification of presidential electors,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, November 28, 2020, https://triblive.com/news/politics-election/26-state-house-republicans-call-for-withdrawing-certification-of-presidential-electors/

Philip Rucker et al., “20 days of fantasy and failure: Inside Trump’s quest to overturn the election,” Washington Post, November 28, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-election-overturn/2020/11/28/34f45226-2f47-11eb-96c2-aac3f162215d_story.html

Elise Viebeck, “Pennsylvania Supreme Court dismisses lawsuit against mail ballots with prejudice in another defeat for Trump,” Washington Post, November 28, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/pennsylvania-supreme-court-dismisses-lawsuit-against-mail-ballots-with-prejudice-in-another-defeat-for-trump/2020/11/28/d1d50ef4-31d2-11eb-96c2-aac3f162215d_story.html


  1. [1]Elise Viebeck, “Pennsylvania Supreme Court dismisses lawsuit against mail ballots with prejudice in another defeat for Trump,” Washington Post, November 28, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/pennsylvania-supreme-court-dismisses-lawsuit-against-mail-ballots-with-prejudice-in-another-defeat-for-trump/2020/11/28/d1d50ef4-31d2-11eb-96c2-aac3f162215d_story.html
  2. [2]Elise Viebeck, “Pennsylvania Supreme Court dismisses lawsuit against mail ballots with prejudice in another defeat for Trump,” Washington Post, November 28, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/pennsylvania-supreme-court-dismisses-lawsuit-against-mail-ballots-with-prejudice-in-another-defeat-for-trump/2020/11/28/d1d50ef4-31d2-11eb-96c2-aac3f162215d_story.html
  3. [3]Elise Viebeck, “Pennsylvania Supreme Court dismisses lawsuit against mail ballots with prejudice in another defeat for Trump,” Washington Post, November 28, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/pennsylvania-supreme-court-dismisses-lawsuit-against-mail-ballots-with-prejudice-in-another-defeat-for-trump/2020/11/28/d1d50ef4-31d2-11eb-96c2-aac3f162215d_story.html
  4. [4]Elise Viebeck, “Pennsylvania Supreme Court dismisses lawsuit against mail ballots with prejudice in another defeat for Trump,” Washington Post, November 28, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/pennsylvania-supreme-court-dismisses-lawsuit-against-mail-ballots-with-prejudice-in-another-defeat-for-trump/2020/11/28/d1d50ef4-31d2-11eb-96c2-aac3f162215d_story.html
  5. [5]Philip Rucker et al., “20 days of fantasy and failure: Inside Trump’s quest to overturn the election,” Washington Post, November 28, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-election-overturn/2020/11/28/34f45226-2f47-11eb-96c2-aac3f162215d_story.html
  6. [6]Philip Rucker et al., “20 days of fantasy and failure: Inside Trump’s quest to overturn the election,” Washington Post, November 28, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-election-overturn/2020/11/28/34f45226-2f47-11eb-96c2-aac3f162215d_story.html
  7. [7]Elise Viebeck, “Pennsylvania Supreme Court dismisses lawsuit against mail ballots with prejudice in another defeat for Trump,” Washington Post, November 28, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/pennsylvania-supreme-court-dismisses-lawsuit-against-mail-ballots-with-prejudice-in-another-defeat-for-trump/2020/11/28/d1d50ef4-31d2-11eb-96c2-aac3f162215d_story.html
  8. [8]Jan Murphy, “26 state House Republicans call for withdrawing certification of presidential electors,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, November 28, 2020, https://triblive.com/news/politics-election/26-state-house-republicans-call-for-withdrawing-certification-of-presidential-electors/
  9. [9]Jan Murphy, “26 state House Republicans call for withdrawing certification of presidential electors,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, November 28, 2020, https://triblive.com/news/politics-election/26-state-house-republicans-call-for-withdrawing-certification-of-presidential-electors/
  10. [10]WTAE, “New bill to legalize recreational marijuana unveiled by state lawmaker from Pittsburgh,” February 20, 2020, https://www.wtae.com/article/recreational-marijuana-bill-pittsburgh-state-rep-jake-wheatley/31025380
  11. [11]Associated Press, “Pennsylvania GOP seeks to dismantle Wolf’s shutdown,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, June 9, 2020, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/pennsylvania-gop-seeks-to-dismantle-wolfs-shutdown/; Associated Press, “Pennsylvania Republicans Mount New Challenge To Gov. Tom Wolf’s Pandemic Power,” KDKA, July 14, 2020, https://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2020/07/14/republicans-mount-new-challenge-to-governors-pandemic-power/; Elizabeth Hardison and Stephen Caruso, “Pa. Supreme Court throws out GOP challenge to Wolf’s COVID-19 emergency order,” Pennsylvania Capital-Star, July 1, 2020, https://www.penncapital-star.com/covid-19/pa-supreme-court-throws-out-gop-challenge-to-wolfs-covid-19-emergency-order/; Nick Matoney, “‘We can’t do this for another 90 days’: Pa. General Assembly votes to end COVID-19 emergency declaration,” WTAE, June 10, 2020, https://www.wtae.com/article/we-cant-do-this-for-another-90-days-pa-general-assembly-votes-to-end-covid-19-emergency-declaration/32821325; John L. Micek, “W. Pa. Rep. Metcalfe files impeachment articles to ‘remove dictator Wolf’ over pandemic response,” Pennsylvania Capital-Star, June 16, 2020, https://www.penncapital-star.com/blog/w-pa-rep-metcalfe-files-impeachment-articles-to-remove-dictator-wolf-over-pandemic-response/
  12. [12]Associated Press, “Gov. Tom Wolf Vetoes Bills On Firearms During Emergencies And Gas Drilling Regulation,” KDKA, November 26, 2020, https://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2020/11/26/wolf-vetoes-three-bills/; Stephen Caruso, “Pro 2nd Amendment lawmakers want to let you carry a gun during an emergency,” Pennsylvania Capital-Star, July 7, 2020, https://www.penncapital-star.com/government-politics/pro-2nd-amendment-lawmakers-want-to-let-you-carry-a-gun-during-an-emergency/; Jon Delano, “Lawrence Co. Lawmaker Wants To Abolish Concealed Carry Gun Permits,” KDKA, May 7, 2019, https://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2019/05/07/aaron-bernstine-abolish-pennsylvania-concealed-carry-law/

Certainly not just my imagination: Pittsburgh is a “hub” for white supremacism. (Update #2)

Updates

  1. Originally published, November 13, 2020, 11:36 am.
  2. November 13, 2020, 9:41 pm:
    • Jonathan Freedland thinks that even as Donald Trump is utterly failing in his attempts to challenge the election results and clearly resisting those results,[1] he is preparing to set up a sort of “government in exile,” running in parallel with Joe Biden’s presidency, to undermine the latter.[2] On the other hand, Trump might just be aiming to set up a competitor to Fox News.[3] Either way, Freedland is right that something like half the country does not accept Biden as having won the election[4]—I still see lots of Trump signs, banners and flags as I drive around Pittsburgh—and either plan would exacerbate this situation. Which Trump undoubtedly wants to do.

Donald Trump

There is a new blog post from yesterday, entitled, “Epistemology in the present U.S. political crisis.”

Mike Allen, “Trump eyes digital media empire to take on Fox News,” Axios, November 12, 2020, https://www.axios.com/trump-fox-news-digital-media-competitor-25afddee-144d-4820-8ed4-9eb0ffa42420.html

Jonathan Freedland, “This is no conventional coup. Trump is paving the way for a ‘virtual Confederacy,'” Guardian, November 13, 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/nov/13/trump-coup-virtual-confederacy-race-legal-trumpian


Pittsburgh

The Federal Bureau of Investigation says Pittsburgh is a “hub” for white supremacism, including, possibly, violent white supremacism. The FBI is limited in its investigations because much of the activity is talk—speech, protected by the First Amendment—and not actually criminal.[5]

Ewan Palmer, “FBI Warn White Supremacist Activity in Pittsburgh Among Highest in Country,” Newsweek, November 13, 2020, https://www.newsweek.com/pittsburgh-white-supremacist-fbi-far-right-1547149


  1. [1]Aaron Blake, “Trump lawyers suffer embarrassing rebukes from judges over voter fraud claims,” Washington Post, November 11, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2020/11/11/trump-lawyers-suffer-embarrassing-rebukes-judges-over-voter-fraud-claims/; Marjorie Cohn, “Trump’s Frivolous Lawsuits Are the Tip of the Iceberg in His Refusal to Concede,” Truthout, November 11, 2020, https://truthout.org/articles/trumps-frivolous-lawsuits-are-the-tip-of-the-iceberg-in-his-refusal-to-concede/
  2. [2]Jonathan Freedland, “This is no conventional coup. Trump is paving the way for a ‘virtual Confederacy,'” Guardian, November 13, 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/nov/13/trump-coup-virtual-confederacy-race-legal-trumpian
  3. [3]Mike Allen, “Trump eyes digital media empire to take on Fox News,” Axios, November 12, 2020, https://www.axios.com/trump-fox-news-digital-media-competitor-25afddee-144d-4820-8ed4-9eb0ffa42420.html
  4. [4]Jonathan Freedland, “This is no conventional coup. Trump is paving the way for a ‘virtual Confederacy,'” Guardian, November 13, 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/nov/13/trump-coup-virtual-confederacy-race-legal-trumpian
  5. [5]Ewan Palmer, “FBI Warn White Supremacist Activity in Pittsburgh Among Highest in Country,” Newsweek, November 13, 2020, https://www.newsweek.com/pittsburgh-white-supremacist-fbi-far-right-1547149

Who’s the biggest super-spreader of them all? (Update #15)

Updates

  1. Originally published, November 2, 2020, at 10:00 pm.

  2. November 3, 2020, 8:10 am, revised at 8:30 am:

  3. November 3, 2020, 8:27 am, revised 11:50 am:

  4. November 3, 11:27 am:

    • Writing in the Atlantic, George Thomas diminishes the distinction between a republic and democracy, even as he amplifies[1] the evidence I cite[2] from Federalist no. 10.[3] He argues based on racial progress,[4] the end of slavery in the 13th amendment,[5] equal protection under law in the 14th,[6] and universal male suffrage in the 15th,[7] and civil and voting rights legislation of the 1960s.[8] The curious aspect to this argument is that it omits entirely the problem of class, which James Madison was unmistakably most concerned about in Federalist no. 10,[9] and which is the subject of my deconstruction.[10]

  5. November 3, 2020, 3:01 pm, revised 5:48 pm:

    • I guess I’d have to say that judges are really, really, really not trusting Postmaster General Louis DeJoy’s changes at the U.S. Postal Service,[11] which appear to have harmed service,[12] and come all too conveniently for the election.[13] The latest is a judge ordering postal inspectors to sweep some facilities for ballots and ensure their delivery.[14]

  6. November 3, 2020, 4:43 pm, revised 5:48 pm:

    • So there was this idea—it even appeared in a pediatrics journal—that children don’t catch or transmit the novel coronavirus or the disease it causes, COVID-19, to nearly the degree that adults do.[15] Of course, this flew in the face of everything parents and teachers know about children and their propensity for contagion. Then it turned out that maybe older kids do catch and transmit the disease[16] and that children might carry and transmit the disease pretty much like anyone else.[17] Now it seems kids are getting the disease, although this article does not itself differentiate by age groups or offer much perspective to suggest how much crow the proponents of that earlier idea should be eating.[18] If I follow up on this, I’ll have to chase down some of those links.

  7. November 3, 2020, 5:48 pm:

    • I’ve revised the previous two updates for a bunch of reasons, some having to do with citations, some to improve the explanations.

  8. November 3, 2020, 7:50 pm:

    • I’ve previously observed that the patriarch—a brilliant chef and a not-so-brilliant Trumpster—in the Jewish family that runs the (plant-based) Fortuitea restaurant in North Strabane, a suburb of Pittsburgh in Washington County, Pennsylvania, seemed to be getting his information, particularly with regard to measures taken to try to stem the COVID-19 pandemic, from the same sources as white supremacists (paleoconservatives), including anti-Semitic white supremacists. It made me sufficiently uncomfortable that I’ve stopped going to that restaurant, though I very much miss the food.

      On Monday (November 2) morning, someone spray-painted “Trump” and “MAGA” on some Jewish headstones. From the description of this and another attack, I find it hard to imagine that anyone other than anti-Semitic white supremacists would commit these crimes, even if “David J.B. Krishef, the rabbi at Ahavas Israel, told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency that it was unclear if the vandalism was an attack on the Jewish community.”[19] Meanwhile, settlers in the Occupied Territories are praying for Donald Trumps’s victory.[20]

      There are, of course, reasons for this. Trump moved the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem and promoted a so-called ‘peace’ plan that the settlers like very much.[21] This, of course, was the ‘peace’ of conquest, far from that of justice, meant to humiliate Palestinians.[22]

      But I’m thinking of that restaurant and its patriarch. And I can’t help but feel there is a very weird and really rather sickening alliance between Zionists, anti-Semites, Donald Trump, and the Trump administration.

  9. November 4, 2020, 2:10 am:
    • At this writing, 90 percent of the vote is counted in Wisconsin and 67 percent in Michigan. Donald Trump leads in both states. Assuming FiveThirtyEight is correct, I think the “‘easy’ paths” are closed.

      I understand that Pennsylvania hasn’t even begun counting mail-in ballots. There was a significant campaign here for voters to vote by mail and I expect, especially in the cities, that many voters did so. Trump has the lead, this might well be a mirage, and only 64 percent of the vote is counted.

      I should qualify what I’m about to say with an earlier tweet:

      My reading at the present time has to be that Donald Trump may very well have won re-election.

  10. November 4, 2020, 3:26 am:

    • At this point, the Associated Press has not called the following states:[23]
      State Percent counted Leader Electoral Votes
      Alaska 32 Donald Trump 3
      Georgia 94 Donald Trump 16
      Michigan 73 Donald Trump 16
      North Carolina 94 Donald Trump 15
      Nevada 57 Joe Biden 6
      Pennsylvania 64 Donald Trump 20
      Wisconsin 93 Donald Trump 10

      Of these states, the only one I think might still flip is Pennsylvania. That would combine with Nevada to add 26 votes to Joe Biden’s current total of 238, for a total of 264, falling short of 270. Donald Trump would add 60 votes to his current 213, for a total of 273, exceeding 270. It looks to me like Donald Trump has won re-election.

  11. November 4, 2020, 6:52 am:

    • Wisconsin, the land of Scott Walker, appears to have flipped in favor of Joe Biden:[24]

      State Percent counted Leader Electoral Votes
      Alaska 43 Donald Trump 3
      Georgia 94 Donald Trump 16
      Michigan 87 Donald Trump 16
      North Carolina 94 Donald Trump 15
      Nevada 67 Joe Biden 6
      Pennsylvania 64 Donald Trump 20
      Wisconsin 95 Joe Biden 10

      This changes matters considerably. It also puts the FiveThirtyEight “‘easy’ paths” (see the tweet I quoted in the update at 2:10 am) back in play as I thought Wisconsin was less likely to flip than Michigan. Biden appears to have won Arizona.[25] Michigan has not flipped, however, and Donald Trump still leads there, as well as in Pennsylvania and Georgia.

      Returning to the scenario I outlined at 3:26 am, where Pennsylvania (but not Michigan) also flips, Biden would now net 274 electoral votes while Trump would win only 263.

  12. November 4, 7:51 am:

    • California’s Proposition 22 passed, enabling Uber and Lyft to continue to misclassify their drivers in California as “independent contractors.”[26]

  13. November 4, 9:49 am:

    • The Republicans seem likely to retain control of the Senate:[27]

      State Percent counted Leading Party
      Alaska 45 Republican
      Georgia 94 Republican
      Maine 85 Republican
      Michigan 93 Republican
      North Carolina 93 Republican

      I suppose Michigan might flip for the Senate like it might for the presidential race. But the rest of these are states I see as Republican and I really don’t see them flipping. As to the presidential race,[28]

      State Percent counted Leader Electoral Votes
      Alaska 45 Donald Trump 3
      Georgia 94 Donald Trump 16
      Michigan 94 Donald Trump 16
      North Carolina 94 Donald Trump 15
      Nevada 67 Joe Biden 6
      Pennsylvania 64 Donald Trump 20
      Wisconsin 95 Joe Biden 10

      As more and more votes are counted, the margin for a flip diminishes considerably. By the time we get to the high 90-percentages—none of these states are quite there yet—that margin vanishes to near zero.

      Win or lose, it speaks volumes that the Democratic Party has done so poorly both in political practice and in the election against an incumbent who mishandled the pandemic for all the wrong reasons, as I previously put it,

      politically, economically (also enabling capitalist greed to compound the problem),[29] and medically,[30] with devastating consequences. In addition to all that, Donald Trump recklessly recommended absurdly dangerous non-remedies like hydroxychloroquine[31][32]

      This is not credible opposition and the Democrats’ record of complicity[33] suggests they are something else entirely.

  14. November 4, 2020, 10:17 am:

    • I had barely posted the last update when word came that the Associated Press now has Joe Biden in the lead in Michigan:[34]

      State Percent counted Leader Electoral Votes
      Alaska 45 Donald Trump 3
      Georgia 94 Donald Trump 16
      Michigan 94 Joe Biden 16
      North Carolina 94 Donald Trump 15
      Nevada 67 Joe Biden 6
      Pennsylvania 64 Donald Trump 20
      Wisconsin 95 Joe Biden 10

      Michigan would complete one of FiveThirtyEight’s “‘easy’ paths” for a Biden victory putting him right at 270 electoral votes.[35] But Pennsylvania is still in play. Here’s the mayor of Pittsburgh:

      Basically, he’s saying that Allegheny County will likely turn out for Biden. My understanding is that in combination with Philadelphia and suburbs, that probably means Biden gets Pennsylvania, bringing his electoral college margin to 290.

      But this is where we move to the next phase, where Donald Trump starts playing his games for real, attempting to contest the result.[36] It could also be where we start to see militia activity[37] such as I (and others[38]) have warned about.[39]

  15. November 4, 8:46 pm:

    • So at one point (see above), I thought Joe Biden had managed to lose both to the coronavirus (see above) and one of the worst U.S. presidents ever.[40] But the Associated Press has now called Michigan and Wisconsin for him,[41] which I had thought would stay in Donald Trump’s column (see above). Now I think Biden has it in the bag.

      This table of states the Associated Press has not called[42] is now shorter:

      State Percent counted Leader Electoral Votes
      Alaska 50 Donald Trump 3
      Georgia 98 Donald Trump 16
      North Carolina 94 Donald Trump 15
      Nevada 75 Joe Biden 6
      Pennsylvania 88 Donald Trump 20

      I would be surprised if Alaska, Georgia, or North Carolina wind up in Biden’s column, though obviously they’re still too close for the A.P. to call. With 98 percent counted, Georgia should be very close to being called. Biden, on the other hand, has held a lead in Nevada for as long as I’ve been watching the map[43] and with urban areas both taking longer to count and being more likely to support the Democrat, I think that’s Biden’s remaining six needed electoral votes right there. But I also think, though Trump for now retains a lead in the state,[44] Pennsylvania will also end up in Biden’s column.

      At the very least, Trump has a seriously difficult uphill climb to win.

  16. November 4, 2020, 10:00 pm:

    • So when a judge ordered a sweep of postal facilities for undelivered ballots,[45] I just sort of assumed that that would happen:

      Earlier Tuesday, U.S. District Judge Emmet G. Sullivan of the District of Columbia had ordered the Postal Service to sweep 12 postal processing facilities that cover 15 states for ballots. But the agency rebuffed that order and said it would stick to its own inspection schedule, which voting rights advocates worried was too late in the day for found ballots to make it to vote counters.[46]

      Um, wow. Disregarding a court order is not on my list of recommended behaviors but I guess that’s just what the Postal Service did. And this should surprise no one: The judge is pissed. Really pissed. Hinting at finding Louis DeJoy in contempt of court pissed.[47] Bad move, DeJoy. Really bad move.

    • Jeez. The A.P. still hasn’t called Georgia.[48]


Election Day

It’s election day tomorrow (November 3). Here are my recent relevant blog entries:

So if you get really bored while waiting days or weeks for the election results, you can see how well my shit stands the test of time.

Oh, and I guess that asteroid, that had a snowball’s chance in hell, but a chance nonetheless, of striking earth today (November 2),[49] didn’t.

The suffering continues.


Donald Trump

It’s almost as if our delusional raging narcissist-in-chief gazes in a mirror and recites,

Mirror, mirror, on the wall,
Who’s the biggest super-spreader of them all?

Melissa Healy, “Super-spreading Trump rallies led to more than 700 COVID-19 deaths, study estimates,” Los Angeles Times, October 31, 2020, https://www.latimes.com/science/story/2020-10-31/super-spreading-trump-rallies-led-to-more-than-700-covid-19-deaths-study

Associated Press, “Leaders of settlers in Israel pray for a Trump victory in the US Election,” Al Arabiya, November 4, 2020, https://english.alarabiya.net/en/News/world/2020/11/04/Leaders-of-settlers-in-Israel-pray-for-a-Trump-victory-in-the-US-Election


Postal Service

Alvin Chang, “Judge orders US Postal Service to take ‘extraordinary measures’ to deliver ballots on time,” Guardian, November 2, 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2020/nov/02/us-postal-service-election-mail-ballots-delays-judge-extraordinary-measures

Maya Lau and Laura J. Nelson, “Judge orders sweep of postal facilities for leftover ballots,” Los Angeles Times, November 3, 2020, https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2020-11-03/judge-orders-sweep-of-postal-facilities-for-leftover-ballots

Jacob Bogage and Christopher Ingraham, “USPS data shows thousands of mailed ballots missed Election Day deadlines,” Washington Post, November 4, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2020/11/03/election-ballot-delays-usps/


Pandemic

Erika Edwards, “More than 61,000 children got Covid-19 last week, a record,” NBC News, November 2, 2020, https://www.nbcnews.com/health/health-news/more-61-000-children-got-covid-19-last-week-record-n1245851


Anti-Semitism

Teo Armus, “‘Trump’ and ‘MAGA’ spray-painted on gravestones in Michigan Jewish cemetery,” Washington Post, November 3, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2020/11/03/michigan-jewish-cemetery-trump-maga/


Gig economy

Jeong Park, “Uber, Lyft win approval of California gig worker measure,” Sacramento Bee, November 3, 2020, https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/election/article246814727.html


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  37. [37]Megan Guza And Paul Peirce, “Western Pa. police ready for any election-related shenanigans, as report warns of possible militia violence,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 30, 2020, https://triblive.com/local/westmoreland/western-pa-police-ready-for-any-election-related-shenanigans-as-report-warns-of-possible-militia-violence/; Danielle Moran, Laura Bliss, and Sarah Holder, “Cities Gird for Election Day Unrest,” CityLab, October 26, 2020, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-10-26/cities-gird-for-election-day-unrest
  38. [38]Megan Guza And Paul Peirce, “Western Pa. police ready for any election-related shenanigans, as report warns of possible militia violence,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 30, 2020, https://triblive.com/local/westmoreland/western-pa-police-ready-for-any-election-related-shenanigans-as-report-warns-of-possible-militia-violence/; Danielle Moran, Laura Bliss, and Sarah Holder, “Cities Gird for Election Day Unrest,” CityLab, October 26, 2020, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-10-26/cities-gird-for-election-day-unrest
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Donald Trump gets COVID-19 (Update #10)

Updates

  1. Originally published, October 3, 2020, 11:45 am.
  2. October 3, 10:27 pm:
    • Reports of Donald Trump’s condition have been contradictory and sometimes misleading. White House physician Sean Conley has been evasive and I would accordingly suggest discounting anything he says, just as we would anything Trump says, which leaves us with the possibility, albeit from often unnamed sources, that this really is serious.[1]
  3. October 4, 8:13 am:
    • It appears Donald Trump has been given two experimental treatments to combat COVID-19: regeneron and remdesivir. Medical doctors are having a hard time reading the tea leaves of contradictory and omitted information but would seem to be somewhat more concerned about Trump’s condition than Sean Conley (see previous update, October 3, 10:27 pm).[2]
  4. October 4, 8:34 am:
  5. October 4, 10:26 am:
    • The Republican refusal to take COVID-19 seriously is now boomeranging on the nomination of Amy Coney Barrett to take Ruth Bader Ginsburg’s seat on the Supreme Court as at least two Republican senators on the Judiciary Committee are now in self-quarantine and unable to vote.[3] Er, make that three. Oh, and that Rose Garden ceremony where Donald Trump announced Barrett’s nomination? Looking more and more like a “superspreader event.”[4]
  6. October 4, 11:16 pm:
    • I got annoyed and dredged up my old research journal post on the second amendment. I have now resurrected it. My thinking has progressed a bit since I wrote it but the new post contains the text as it was in my research journal, with a prefatory note.
    • Donald Trump’s condition was indeed[5] more serious[6] than earlier acknowledged by White House physician Sean Conley.[7] And apparently the optimistic view that Trump might be out of Walter Reed Hospital tomorrow makes no fucking sense whatsoever.[8] So, um, Trump’s doctors and the White House can take their “abundance of caution” shit[9] and shove it right back up where it came from. Trustworthy indications will be when Trump is back on a golf course or in a casket; anything else on the record should be treated as bullshit.
  7. October 5, 2020, 9:57 am:
    • One problem with working from “live update” stories from the Washington Post, and a reason I normally eschew them, is that citation details change. Another reason is simply that it is difficult to know when you have the final version of the article. I’ve gone back and updated the citations now in the blog post and here.
    • “As of Sunday [October 4] afternoon, there are valid questions about whether anyone providing details of Trump’s health can be trusted.”[10]
    • I tweeted this before seeing the latest “live update” story from the Washington Post.[11] I must have been up later than I thought, Sunday night. I should have said today:

      Basically, we’ll know what’s going on when Donald Trump is either in a casket or back on the golf course.

    • In retrospect, it seems obvious that gay men are the rightful owners of the “Proud Boys” label. In retrospect. They’re smartasses for reclaiming it[12] and, I dare say, being really rather courageous in doing so. I’m calling bullshit on the “spreading joy”[13] shit, but I am most certainly amused.

      But Enrique Tarrio, the leader of the Proud Boys, said he doesn’t see what the men are trying to accomplish.

      “I think it’s hysterical,” Tarrio told CNN. “This isn’t something that’s offensive to us. It’s not an insult. We aren’t homophobic. We don’t care who people sleep with. People think it’s going to bother us. It doesn’t.”[14]

      Trust me. He’s annoyed. Very annoyed. And by the way, a detail I didn’t know: “Tarrio, a Cuban American, is also the leader of the grassroots group Latinos for Trump.”[15] Uh huh. I just saw a banner for the latter group, along with one for “Blacks for Trump,” yesterday in New Kensington.

    • (@NRO is the National Review online.)

  8. October 5, 11:29 am:
    • The U.S. Supreme Court turned away a challenge to Pennsylvania’s lockdown. This is a separate case[16] from the one in which a Trump appointee relying on capitalist libertarian logic struck down the restrictions[17] in a ruling that had to be stayed by the appeals court[18] and is unlikely to be upheld.[19]
  9. October 5, 2020, 10:38 pm:
    • I’m a doctor, but not a medical doctor, so treat this as a lay opinion: Donald Trump leaving Walter Reed Hospital[20] strikes me as likely having been done against medical advice and probably considerably diminishes the possibility entertained by so many for so long that he’s a malicious and compulsive liar. What we are seeing here is stupidity. It is insanity. It is delusional raging narcissism.

      One thing we can conclude so far is that the jackassery has not been diminished in this episode as Trump and fellow Republicans continue to spew bullshit.[21]

  10. October 6, 2020, 10:21 am:
    • Reportedly, Donald Trump also received the steroid dexamethasone which “is considered safe only when a patient appears to be at high risk of developing the kind of overactive inflammatory response that can lead to organ failure and death”[22] and whose side effects include “mania, depression, psychotic or mixed affective states, cognitive deficits, and minor psychiatric disturbances (irritability, insomnia, anxiety, labile mood).”[23] “If Trump’s physicians are following the recommendations from the Recovery study and giving him 6 mg of dexamethasone once per day for 10 days, his treatment could stretch to Oct. 14 — one day before the second presidential debate is scheduled to take place in Miami.”[24] I make it a rule to not watch debates, but um, I’m gonna have to think about this one.
    • Donald Trump appeared to be having difficulty breathing when he returned to the White House.[25]

Donald Trump

There is a new blog post entitled, “On wishing the delusional raging narcissist-in-chief well.”

Megan Guza And Julia Felton, “Pittsburgh doctors discuss Trump’s covid risk factors,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 2, 2020, https://triblive.com/news/health-now/pittsburgh-doctors-discuss-trumps-covid-risk-factors/

Robert Mackey, “Trump Is Hospitalized With Covid-19, Days After Mocking Biden for Wearing a Mask,” Intercept, October 2, 2020, https://theintercept.com/2020/10/02/trump-tests-positive-covid-48-hours-mocking-biden-wearing-mask/

Andrew Restuccia, “Trump and His Aides Have Long Played Down Importance of Face Masks, Distancing,” Wall Street Journal, October 2, 2020, https://www.wsj.com/articles/trump-and-his-aides-have-long-downplayed-importance-of-face-masks-distancing-11601655164

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/

Colby Itkowitz et al., “Chief of staff says next 48 hours ‘critical’ as Trump says he’s doing well,” Washington Post, October 4, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/elections/2020/10/03/trump-covid-live-updates/

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,” October 3, 2020, https://www.cnn.com/2020/10/03/politics/donald-trump-coronavirus-walter-reed/index.html

John Wagner et al., “Trump at hospital after positive coronavirus test; Kellyanne Conway, two senators test positive,” Washington Post, October 4, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/elections/2020/10/02/trump-biden-live-updates/

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

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/

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/

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


‘Proud Boys’

Alaa Elassar, “Gay men have taken over the Proud Boys Twitter hashtag,” CNN, October 4, 2020, https://www.cnn.com/2020/10/04/us/proud-boys-twitter-hashtag-gay-men-trnd/index.html


Pennsylvania

Greg Stohr, “Supreme Court Rejects Challenge to Pennsylvania Shutdown Order,” Bloomberg, October 5, 2020, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-10-05/supreme-court-rejects-challenge-to-pennsylvania-shutdown-order


  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/; Maeve Reston and Gregory Krieg, “White House sows confusion about Trump’s condition as source tells reporters next 48 hours will be critical,” October 3, 2020, https://www.cnn.com/2020/10/03/politics/donald-trump-coronavirus-walter-reed/index.html
  2. [2]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
  3. [3]Mary Clare Jalonick, “Virus spreads on panel handling Supreme Court nomination,” Washington Post, October 3, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/virus-spreads-on-panel-handling-supreme-court-nomination/2020/10/03/0c43dc7a-05df-11eb-b92e-029676f9ebec_story.html
  4. [4]Russell Berman, “Suddenly, Amy Coney Barrett Might Not Have the Votes,” Atlantic, October 3, 2020, https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2020/10/supreme-court-trump-covid/616608/
  5. [5]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
  6. [6]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
  7. [7]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/; Maeve Reston and Gregory Krieg, “White House sows confusion about Trump’s condition as source tells reporters next 48 hours will be critical,” October 3, 2020, https://www.cnn.com/2020/10/03/politics/donald-trump-coronavirus-walter-reed/index.html
  8. [8]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
  9. [9]Colby Itkowitz et al., “Chief of staff says next 48 hours ‘critical’ as Trump says he’s doing well,” Washington Post, October 4, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/elections/2020/10/03/trump-covid-live-updates/; John Wagner et al., “Trump at hospital after positive coronavirus test; Kellyanne Conway, two senators test positive,” Washington Post, October 4, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/elections/2020/10/02/trump-biden-live-updates/
  10. [10]Philip Bump, in 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/
  11. [11]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/
  12. [12]Alaa Elassar, “Gay men have taken over the Proud Boys Twitter hashtag,” CNN, October 4, 2020, https://www.cnn.com/2020/10/04/us/proud-boys-twitter-hashtag-gay-men-trnd/index.html
  13. [13]Alaa Elassar, “Gay men have taken over the Proud Boys Twitter hashtag,” CNN, October 4, 2020, https://www.cnn.com/2020/10/04/us/proud-boys-twitter-hashtag-gay-men-trnd/index.html
  14. [14]Alaa Elassar, “Gay men have taken over the Proud Boys Twitter hashtag,” CNN, October 4, 2020, https://www.cnn.com/2020/10/04/us/proud-boys-twitter-hashtag-gay-men-trnd/index.html
  15. [15]Alaa Elassar, “Gay men have taken over the Proud Boys Twitter hashtag,” CNN, October 4, 2020, https://www.cnn.com/2020/10/04/us/proud-boys-twitter-hashtag-gay-men-trnd/index.html
  16. [16]Greg Stohr, “Supreme Court Rejects Challenge to Pennsylvania Shutdown Order,” Bloomberg, October 5, 2020, https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2020-10-05/supreme-court-rejects-challenge-to-pennsylvania-shutdown-order
  17. [17]Paula Reed Ward, “Federal judge rules Gov. Wolf’s shutdown orders were unconstitutional,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 14, 2020, https://triblive.com/local/regional/federal-judge-rules-gov-wolfs-shutdown-orders-were-unconstitutional/
  18. [18]Paula Reed Ward, “Appeals court allows Gov. Tom Wolf, state to restore covid crowd restrictions,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 1, 2020, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/appeals-court-allows-pennsylvania-to-restrict-crowd-size/
  19. [19]Jamie Martines and Paula Reed Ward, “Why the ruling against Wolf’s covid-19 restrictions faces long odds on appeal, explained,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 17, 2020, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/why-the-ruling-against-wolfs-covid-19-restrictions-faces-long-odds-on-appeal-explained/
  20. [20]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/
  21. [21]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/
  22. [22]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
  23. [23]Mayo Clinic Proceedings, quoted in 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
  24. [24]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
  25. [25]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

Louis DeJoy accused of ‘voter suppression’

Updates

  1. Originally published, September 13, 2020, at 9:52 am.
  2. September 13, 10:49 am:
    • There have been tens of thousands of COVID-19 cases and hundreds of deaths at animal flesh packing plants. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration has fined merely two companies a mere $29,000, apparently under influence from the Trump administration. Labor representatives worry the paltry fines will function as a disincentive to safety.[1]
  3. September 13, 9:23 pm:
  4. September 14, 2:46 am:
    • I’m not sure that the horse isn’t already out of the barn, but confirming the last update (September 13, 9:23 pm), it appears the judge did indeed grant a temporary restraining order against the Postal Service.[2]
  5. September 14, 3:06 am:
    • I guess this is Sally (figure 2) in the Gulf of Mexico.

Conservatism

There is a new blog post entitled, “On ‘freedom.’


Postal Service

“In Colorado, every registered voter is sent a ballot without having to make a request and voters are urged to return ballots by mail sooner than seven days before the election. My office asked USPS officials to delay or not send the mailer in Colorado, but they refused to commit to that,” said [Colorado Secretary of State Jena] Griswold. Voters in states with similar vote-by-mail, such as California and Washington, could also be misled by the postcard’s recommendations.[3]

I had thought the card was pretty germaine, but given its obvious significance in this election, took the precaution of scanning it in (figure 1) before, as I do with nearly everything, shredding it:[4]

Fig. 1. Scan of card received by author on September 11, 2020, from the U.S. Postal Service.

Sure enough, there is specific advice there that could conflict with some states’ rules. And it really wouldn’t have taken a lot of rephrasing to mollify Jena Griswold and her colleagues from, she says, at least five other states.[5]

Jake Johnson, “Condemning ‘Attempt at Voter Suppression,’ Colorado Sues DeJoy Over Misleading Postal Service Mailers,” Common Dreams, September 12, 2020, https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/09/12/condemning-attempt-voter-suppression-colorado-sues-dejoy-over-misleading-postal

Colleen Flynn and Evan Kruegel, “TRO against USPS granted in lawsuit filed by Colo. Sec. of State Jena Griswold,” KDVR, September 12, 2020, https://kdvr.com/news/tro-against-usps-granted-in-lawsuit-filed-by-colo-sec-of-state-jena-griswold/


Animal flesh

Kimberly Kindy, “More than 200 meat plant workers in the U.S. have died of covid-19. Federal regulators just issued two modest fines,” Washington Post, September 13, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/osha-covid-meat-plant-fines/2020/09/13/1dca3e14-f395-11ea-bc45-e5d48ab44b9f_story.html


Sally


Fig. 2. 72-hour gif of satellite imagery for Eastern U.S. and the Gulf of Mexico, as of September 14, 2020, at 2:02 am.


  1. [1]Kimberly Kindy, “More than 200 meat plant workers in the U.S. have died of covid-19. Federal regulators just issued two modest fines,” Washington Post, September 13, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/osha-covid-meat-plant-fines/2020/09/13/1dca3e14-f395-11ea-bc45-e5d48ab44b9f_story.html
  2. [2]Colleen Flynn and Evan Kruegel, “TRO against USPS granted in lawsuit filed by Colo. Sec. of State Jena Griswold,” KDVR, September 12, 2020, https://kdvr.com/news/tro-against-usps-granted-in-lawsuit-filed-by-colo-sec-of-state-jena-griswold/
  3. [3]Jake Johnson, “Condemning ‘Attempt at Voter Suppression,’ Colorado Sues DeJoy Over Misleading Postal Service Mailers,” Common Dreams, September 12, 2020, https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/09/12/condemning-attempt-voter-suppression-colorado-sues-dejoy-over-misleading-postal
  4. [4]The idea is that should I dispose of anything that might be used against me in this way, the motherfuckers will have to piece together a lot of junk before they find it.
  5. [5]Jake Johnson, “Condemning ‘Attempt at Voter Suppression,’ Colorado Sues DeJoy Over Misleading Postal Service Mailers,” Common Dreams, September 12, 2020, https://www.commondreams.org/news/2020/09/12/condemning-attempt-voter-suppression-colorado-sues-dejoy-over-misleading-postal

Welcome to the apocalypse

Horse race

It’s a truly bizarre platform under the circumstances, but as is typical for neoliberals, utterly and willfully ignorant of reality:

“M4A” means Medicare For All.


White supremacist militia

I have added a note to a previous blog post:

I am remembering a previous blog post in which I witnessed a local cop (in the Pittsburgh area) allowed his dog to bark viciously and persistently at a Black man who was doing nothing more than walking across a parking lot. Instances such as these, this one that I personally witnessed,[1] the one Ryan Devereaux describes,[2] and, of course, the disproportionate killings of Blacks,[3] virtually erase the distinction between police and white supremacist militia, transforming it to a distinction between regular (official) and irregular (unofficial) white supremacist militia. I don’t know how you conclude otherwise.[4]


  1. [1]David Benfell, “Hey cops! Do you know what year it is?” Not Housebroken, August 27, 2019, https://disunitedstates.org/2019/08/27/hey-cops-do-you-know-what-year-it-is/
  2. [2]Ryan Devereaux, “The Thin Blue Line Between Violent, Pro-Trump Militias and Police,” Intercept, August 28, 2020, https://theintercept.com/2020/08/28/kyle-rittenhouse-violent-pro-trump-militias-police/
  3. [3]Mark Berman et al., “Protests spread over police shootings. Police promised reforms. Every year, they still shoot and kill nearly 1,000 people,” Washington Post, June 8, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/investigations/protests-spread-over-police-shootings-police-promised-reforms-every-year-they-still-shoot-nearly-1000-people/2020/06/08/5c204f0c-a67c-11ea-b473-04905b1af82b_story.html; James Downie, “Time to toss the ‘bad apples’ excuse,” Washington Post, May 31, 2020, https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2020/05/31/time-toss-bad-apples-excuse/; Wesley Lowery, “Aren’t more white people than black people killed by police? Yes, but no,” Washington Post, July 11, 2016, https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2016/07/11/arent-more-white-people-than-black-people-killed-by-police-yes-but-no/; Brentin Mock, “What New Research Says About Race and Police Shootings,” CityLab, August 6, 2019, https://www.citylab.com/equity/2019/08/police-officer-shootings-gun-violence-racial-bias-crime-data/595528/; Elie Mystal, “There’s Only One Possible Conclusion: White America Likes Its Killer Cops,” Nation, May 27, 2020, https://www.thenation.com/article/society/white-america-cops/; Keeanga-Yamahtta Taylor, “How Do We Change America?” New Yorker, June 8, 2020, https://www.newyorker.com/news/our-columnists/how-do-we-change-america
  4. [4]David Benfell, “Donald Trump’s ‘brown shirts,’” Not Housebroken, September 12, 2020, https://disunitedstates.org/2020/08/30/donald-trumps-brown-shirts/

Reckless Trumpsters sink each others’ boats

Trumpsters

These Trumpsters on Lake Travis remind me of the dickheads driving recklessly on the roads around Pittsburgh.

It’s telling, awfully telling, that police do not profile their monster pickup trucks the way they do Blacks.

Matthew S. Schwartz, “5 Boats Sink At Trump Boat Parade In Texas,” National Public Radio, September 6, 2020, https://www.npr.org/2020/09/06/910322916/5-boats-sink-at-trump-boat-parade-in-texas


2021 to start off with a bang as Donald Trump’s eviction moratorium comes to an end?

Eviction

I’m still not quite sure what to make of it, but it appears Donald Trump has signed an executive order forestalling evictions for people making less than $99,000 per year and having trouble making their rent through the end of the year.[1]

That should keep many of his Trumpsters off the street through the election, long enough perhaps for Trump to get reelected, and through Christmas. So we might have a reprieve, only temporary, but a reprieve from the violence I worried about yesterday.[2] 2021, however, will be a new year.

John Fritze and Nicholas Wu, “Trump administration announces nationwide eviction moratorium through end of the year,” USA Today, September 1, 2020, https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2020/09/01/trump-imposes-eviction-moratorium-because-covid-19-pandemic/5686402002/


  1. [1]John Fritze and Nicholas Wu, “Trump administration announces nationwide eviction moratorium through end of the year,” USA Today, September 1, 2020, https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2020/09/01/trump-imposes-eviction-moratorium-because-covid-19-pandemic/5686402002/
  2. [2]David Benfell, “Eviction and race war,” Not Housebroken, September 1, 2020, https://disunitedstates.org/2020/09/01/eviction-and-race-war/