CAN WE TRUST THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) STATISTICS? — PART 3

This “reblog” is CAN WE TRUST THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) STATISTICS? — PART 3. Check out the previous two posts.


IS IT SAFE TO SEND OUR CHILDREN TO SCHOOL?

The public schools in our local area will start the 2020/2021 school year 100 percent virtual.

Should the schools be reopened with the teachers and the children actually in the schools? There seems to be three issues:

  • If we reopen the schools our children will get sick.
  • If we reopen the schools our children, because they are super spreaders, will make everyone sick.
  • We should wait until it is “safe” to reopen the schools.

Continued here.

275 thoughts on “CAN WE TRUST THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) STATISTICS? — PART 3

  1. “We will see. Even if I am wrong about whether the debates take place, I will be right. The debates will be a disaster for Biden.”

    Tom,

    Normally it’s a good idea in debates to lower expectations for your candidate and raise them for his opponent. Right now all Biden has to do is not drool on himself overmuch to win. Keep it up!

    I don’t think a morbidly obese, pathologically narcissistic Trump, conspiracy theorist who after all this time still can’t read a teleprompter without sounding like a three year old is going to fair well in the comparison, but I also realize this kind of libelous projection is all you got to work with here. Personally, I bet it’s Trump that backs out. He’s got more to lose, especially since he can’t do his rallies right now without killing off his base.

    BTW, you keep accusing me of trumping up accusations against your orange incompetenceness (even though I’m just pointing at the facts). Don’t you find this mental capacity just a little hypocritical? I suppose not. “Move along folks, no double standard to see here folks.”

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    1. @tsalmon
      @Liz
      @Doug
      @marmoewp

      Normally it’s a good idea in debates to lower expectations for your candidate and raise them for his opponent. Right now all Biden has to do is not drool on himself overmuch to win. Keep it up!

      High expectations for Trump. Not a Christian attitude. We should increasingly find the human race, including ourselves, a disappointment. It is the image of God in our neighbors we should love, not anything the flesh can do.

      Look at yourself. You do is look for excuses to tell us how awful Trump is, and you cannot be bothered to explain why you will vote for Biden. You don’t defend Biden. You just attack Trump. Is this what you want me to do?

      How is Biden trying to win? He celebrated the anniversary of the riot in Charlottesville, VA by once again using a quote taken entirely out of context to call Trump a racist. He chose a black woman, whose truthfulness apparently matches his own, as his running mate. During a debate, that woman called Biden a racist, and she almost made it stick. Why does Biden want such a fine mudslinger on his team? Because Trump’s policies have failed?

      Why are Biden and Harris the people you emulate and demand we vote for?

      Are Trump’s policies failures? Well, they don’t seem to be working well in states run by Democrats. Those governors think it is good policy to send people who have caught COVID19 into nursing homes. Perhaps they are experts in Intersectionality, not science. Yet those are the kinds of experts you are voting for.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. “High expectations for Trump. Not a Christian attitude.”

        Tom,

        Thanks for the lecture on what you think it takes to have “a Christian attitude”, but you are the one setting up the low expectations for Biden by rumoring that he has some form of diminished mental capacity. You’ve definitely got some kind of an “attitude”, but I’m not sure that it’s what I’d call Christlike.

        Pssst, just between you and me, I don’t think that the debates usually mean that much. (Trump lost all the debates against Clinton). They are more of cage match sporting event for the punditry to score who got the most meaningless rhetorical hits.

        This election will be decided on Trump’s dismal record, or more specifically, on how Americans feel In November about the dystopia Trump has put America into. Any halfway decent and competent President, Democrat or Republican, would have used the crisis to unite the country and then sail himself into reelection. As I have said before, Trump could not lead a two clown car parade.

        Unfortunately for the tens of thousands of unnecessarily dead and sickened Americans and for the millions unemployed, Trump doesn’t know how to do anything but chaos and destruction. Now instead of working in this crisis to make sure that a difficult time for voting is as free and fair as possible, Trump is openly, actively trying to corrupt and muddy the results. And yet you still continue to worship at the feet of your orange god of hate, petty name calling, racism and chaos. And that’s “a Christian attitude”? Thanks for the voodoo optometry Dr. Tom, but may want to pull that log out of your own eye first bro.

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        1. @tsalmon

          A Christian strives to be ruled by God and doesn’t idolize any man.

          You implicitly recognize the limits of men. That’s why you spend so much effort attacking Trump and belittling those who would vote for him. That is why you spend almost no effort supporting your own choice. The best you can do is say the debates are unimportant. Yet you want your big government. So, you hysterically carry on with streams of insults and various logical fallacies.

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          1. Tom,

            You actually spend NO time defending any Trump plan because Trump has no actual plan. His only record is corruption, incompetence and useless destruction. We point out numerous examples of this, but this about Trump is a feature that you applaud, not a bug. You like it, so what good does it do to constantly point out endless examples to you. It’s the story of Trump’s life told by his past business associates, his former cabinet members, his fixer attorney, his closest relatives, and even the guy who wrote his autobiography.

            Biden has a record, both as a long time senator and as a loyal and essential member of the Obama Whitehouse. Obama/Biden brought us out of the greatest economic downturn since the Great Depression and began the longest economic expansion in modern history. Trump drove the economy into a ditch that may eventually be seen as the Second Great Depression and he just continues to make it worse and worse through his endless dithering. Obama/Biden put millions of Americans on the insurance roles and guaranteed affordable health care for those with preexisting illnesses. In the middle of a Pandemic, Trump is trying to throw millions off health care and destroy preexisting illness guarantees. I could go on and on, but you will just make up lame excuses for Trump and then take cheap name calling shots at Biden while whining like a baby that we are being mean to your big orange bully baby. Good God! The hypocrisy just reeks.

            It honestly doesn’t matter. The people who will actually decide this election don’t sit around doing the stupid wonky pontificating that we do. They could care less about you ideological dogmas. They just want quiet competent government, and they will vote their feelings in the moment.

            I think the American people are worn out with Trump’s divisive bazzaro Reality TV drama. It’s not entertaining anymore. We can not longer afford a joke as our President.

            Personally, I’d be glad not to even think about anything dumb or racist or corrupt or hateful our president says or does for months at a time. Yes, please give me a little quiet competence, civility and calming leadership for a while. We could all use a rest from one Trump self inflicted crisis after another. Please let us get rid of our Drama Queen Presidency. We could all use a little Sleepy Joe for a change.

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          2. @tsalmon

            Hogwash! Even you cannot be that stupid. Most of Trump’s accomplishments consists of undoing Obama/Biden’s so-called accomplishments. If WRECKING our country is an accomplishment, those are the guys for the jobs, no drama Obama and Sleepy Joe.

            1. Until the China virus came on the scene, the economy was roaring. Blaming the CHINA virus on Trump is just pathetic. How was Trump improving the stagnant Obama economy?
            A. Deregulation
            B Lower taxes

            2. Ended our participation in the international global warming agreement

            3. Cancelled the Iran “treaty”

            4. Building the wall and reducing illegal immigration

            5. Appointing lots of Conservative judges

            6. Defending Israel including moving our embassy

            7. Destroying ISIS

            8. Pressuring our NATO allies to pay what they promised

            9. Turning around our trade relationships, including those with an overt enemy nation

            I could go on, but you don’t like Trump because he does what he says he is going to do. You don’t like his promises, but you don’t know why. The problem is with you, not Trump.

            Liked by 1 person

          3. On EVERY single one of your points, Tom, ask yourself “why” did he do that. To make America great? Hell no. It was to make himself great to his base… based on his own biases.

            1. Obama economy was a great recovery from the crash when he took office. His last year in office the economy was on an significant upturn prior to Trump.. and continued wonderfully after Trump.. and in spite of Trump.
            A. Deregulation? Examine each and every Obama regulation… he didn’t just dream this stuff up to screw with peoples’ job or old industries. There were defined goals and objectives running the gamut from global warming to new industry development. It’s well known Trump hated Obama for Obama’s popularity and elitist persona. Hence Trump simply blamed all America’s troubles on Obama regulations for causing business closures. I personally don’t mind a sitting president removing a former president’s decrees/regulations… IF there’s a substantial reason. Not on an arbitrary whim.. with handlers spinning a story later to fit.
            B. Lower taxes? For whom? It’s generally accepted that the wealthy and corporate got the big breaks… at the sacrifice of lower money entering the treasury. Average people are generally no better off financially today as a result of that nonsense.

            2. Got out of the global warming agreement? Why?? Oh.. wait… he said it was unfair to the U.S. in spite of the fact there were no legal commitments. Of course, like his base, global warming doesn’t exist because they are science deniers in general.

            3. Cancelled the Iran treaty?? Why??? It was working! Now Iran can do anything they want. Oh wait.. it was an Obama thing.

            4. Build a wall… to reduce illegal immigration. The usual.. why? Real government stats did not ever support his clams that illegals were ever “pouring over the border and taking American jobs.” Just racial bias. In fact.. any of that new wall has only been replacement wall… very little is anything over new locations.. and he can’t seem to get his financing anyway. All that was needed was enforcing the laws currently on the books.. strengthen the border with manpower, tech, and additional courts. A total exercise in futility at the expense of human suffering.

            5. He appointed Conservative judges? A lot of people seem to follow this idea that it’s to a sitting president’s advantage to appoint judges, especially to SCOTUS, that represent the party politics. It’s been my experience to observe that over time judges tend to quickly abandon any party ideology of their previous lives and prefer to become wise sages of independent Constitutional thought for their legacy. Trump confuses this with judges holding a particular loyalty to him alone. As we’ve seen so far with the new SCOTUS appointments Trump made and their recent decisions falling against traditional Conservative views… there is no personal loyalty. So.. whoop-de- doo.

            6. I have absolutely no idea why moving the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem was even necessary other to cater to Netanyahu. It served no purpose and does nothing. That’s an accomplishment?

            7. Destroying ISIS? That chapter isn’t over yet.

            8. Pressuring NATO to pay up. Apparently a couple here and there did… but all Trump did was sour relationships with our “friends” over petty nonsense that was even incorrectly interpreted in the first place.

            9. Trade relationships? The guy has NO concept of international trade. A lot of farmers are not happy.. and this is adding to nothing good for his re-election. Of course, it continues to sour our “friends”… yada, yada. It’s commonly accepted with government economists (except those in his circle of loyalists) is the American public is paying for the tariffs.. there are not billions and billions going into anyone’s treasury. This entire fiasco could have been differently.

            So, Tom.. to your yin is my yang. Add all that up.. it’s no big deal, even if you remove the pandemic. You always must ask.. “why” is he doing what he does. That’s the measure.
            But it matters not now. He’s plainly sabotaging the election and openly admits it. He’s going more bonkers by the day. Where’s your line in the sand?

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          4. @Doug

            Tsalmon did not bother with serious reply because
            The Obama economy was stagnant. The stock market took off AFTER Trump won. That is easy to look up.

            Obama never got either the global warming or Iran nuke treaties approved because Congress want it’s fingerprints on neither of them.

            You want to call 80 percent of the country racist for wanting to end illegal immigration? That’s your problem.

            You think judges grow more Liberal with time? Well, I do think power corrupts. That’s why I believe the power of government should be limited. So why are you voting for Biden?

            You don’t think moving the embassy to Jerusalem mattered? Yet previous presidents made that promise.

            Will there be more Islamic terrorists? Yes, but ISIS was quite dangerous and Obama was allowing to grow. Biden, most likely, would be even be more feckless.

            The rest? I need to get some rest.

            Liked by 1 person

          5. Trump has done nothing except at first make us a pariah with our allies, then make us a the laughing stock of the world and now, the world simply pities us.

            Trump is a wrecking ball. The “Art of their Deal” only knows how to tear up deals, not how to actually make one. He’s a weak, self centered, foolish loser who is incapable of any thoughts more complex than constant gratification of his own pathetic ego.

            When he is finally dragged out of the White House and ultimately into prison, unlike Obama/Biden, he will leave no accomplishments behind to even be undone, only a path of senseless, stupid destruction.

            He inherited from Obama/Biden an economy with a record period of grow and was doing everything possible to kill it before the virus hit.

            No, I don’t blame Trump for the virus. No one does, despite his constant childish whining about it. I blame him for taking the best scientific capacity in the world and doing everything to neuter it into a manifestation of his own impotence and hopelessly sclerotic imbecility.

            But like I said, if you want senseless destruction and idiocy in your leaders, then for you, Trump is indeed your man. On that, we completely agree. Just don’t be surprised if come December the rest of the country is sorta done with him.

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          6. @tsalmon

            The stock market was soaring, unemployment was at record lows, the GDP growth annually was 3-4 percent…. I was happy with that kind of wrecking ball. We should populate Congress with such wrecking balls too.

            Liked by 1 person

          7. “I was happy with that kind of wrecking ball.”

            Yes, and I’m sure that many passengers were happy with the captains of the Hindenburg and the Titanic too . . . and they weren’t even purposely trying to wreck their ships.

            On a 13 year graph of only those data points that you mention, it’s hard to see that much difference between Obama/Biden and Trump records . . . until COVID-19 and Trump ran the county into the ditch. But weren’t you complaining back during the Obama/Biden administration that the President had little effect on those particular criteria?

            I do note the past tense in your approbation of Trump’s record though. It seems that many Americans are now saying “I WAS happy with Trump.” And the polls show it.

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          8. @tsalmon

            So, you noted the past tense in my approbation of Trump’s record? I think you absurd. The economy stumbled because of COVID19. Therefore, we have to get people back to work. All Biden and Harris will do is sell us out. That is their record.

            When you vote for politicians who promise you other people’s stuff in return for your vote, you vote for politicians who see nothing wrong in accepting bribes.

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          9. The stock market (huge knock on wood) is actually about as high as it has ever been now. I remember the media asserting as soon as Trump was elected the stock market would tank. Because stock investors are banking on future prospects.
            This not only never occurred, it took off like a rocket.
            (enter democrats to credit Obama)
            This has happened again now (which is actually really surprising even to me, with everything that is going on….but it is undeniable this is happening, even while gun sales have never been higher and every store is out of ammo….and I don’t think these are all Biden supporters).

            Liked by 1 person

          10. Among the myriad of fears permeating the landscape these days is this apocalypse thing… or somehow people suddenly think other people want their stuff (and their women, of course) and they need to arm up “just in case”. When/if that ever happens I’ll just call it an “open house”.. c’mon in, browse around, take what you think is valuable (no women here worth taking.. either with consent or not), and move on to the next house.
            Of course, the First Amendment nutjobs (yes.. thinking that owning a gun is the best freedom America has to offer.. and thinking your gun ownership is keeping government at bay… and thinking you alone are going to defend your castle against unruly hoards of people wanting what you have… you’re a nutjob) are already dry firing their weaponry at the TV set… (I use harsh language) itching for a civil war of some sort.
            I should have bought stock in Remington.

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          11. @Doug

            The Second Amendment is about gun rights. We have the Second Amendment because some people are concerned about protecting their rights, especially their First Amendment rights. Given that governments and mobs have killed far more people than so-called nutjobs who are concerned about their Second Amendment rights, I think it appropriate to say you have not informed yourself with respect to this issue.

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          12. It’s VERY appropriate you say that, Tom. Although I’m sure you’d not be surprised that I don’t agree in my not being informed on the subject.
            Kinda funny thing happened on the way to the local grocery store today. I noticed a fair amount of those pickup trucks with the oversize flags waving from their rear fenders roaming the streets… you know.. the one’s I stereotype as being Trump supporters who just drive around looking to be a victim of random Liberal rage. Well, as I pulled into the mall parking lot it turned out I found myself suddenly in the middle of all these vehicles with Trump stickers, big flags waving… tables set up with obvious looking Trump people sitting at them partying it up… people talking, groups of all ages and genders… and not a mask in the bunch, and no distancing of any kind. Yay MAGA! You can’t tell them what to do!
            I have no idea what that Trump celebration was all about… other than their way of flipping the finger to everyone driving by.

            As I left that parking lot and drove down to the next stop light, off to the right side was a single, lowly bearded white gentleman holding up a large self-made cardboard sign that said in red spray paint… “F**k All Racists!” Our eyes met for a moment as I passed him when the light changed… and I gave him a thumbs up from the steering wheel.
            Phew. I need to contain my activism!

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          13. @Doug

            Would it surprise you to knows that you are a bigot. You are stereotyping Trump’s supporters. This kind of bigotry is where H. Clinton’s “deplorables” comment came from.

            Depending upon whether we trust the vote coming out of Democrat-run states, nearly half the country voted for Trump in the last election. Those kinds of numbers defy categorization.

            Liked by 1 person

          14. Umm..
            “a person who is intolerant toward those holding different opinions.”

            ..I believe is the definition. I am not intolerant toward those holding different opinions. As they say.. some of my best friends are Trumpians.
            Perhaps it’s not so much that I can fairly identify by stereotyping who might be a Trump supporter in my own locale… why can’t you stereotype an anti-Trumper?

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          15. I am not intolerant toward those holding different opinions. As they say.. some of my best friends are Trumpians.
            Doug, I remember when you said people who support Trump openly deserve whatever attacks/vandalism they get.

            Liked by 1 person

          16. Actually, I would have been implying that if you wish to prance about in public wearing your political ideology exposed for all the world and God to see then you likely are going to draw attention… which would be your goal anyway… and that attention might present itself as some level of verbal or physical violence against you, your property, those with you at the time, and/or all the above, which again, is obviously your goal. You have made a First Amendment choice to express yourself publicly knowing full well you are taunting the “other side” to express themselves in a way that illustrates how “bad” they are in making you an “innocent victim”. So.. it’s not so much you are getting what you ask for but rather you are inciting a reactionary response to fulfill your personal agenda… and in that context you certainly would be getting what you ask for.

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          17. Tom.. you’re posturing like any of that even matters… and linking Conservative Trumpian mumbo jumbo to boot. Next you’ll be bringing up Hillary, the Benghazi body count, and those 30,000 emails as if it pertains to ANYTHING going on in the world.

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          18. Oh this I DO know, Biden would NOT be worse.
            You’re the self-proclaimed Constitutionalist, Tom. He’s trying to tamper very obviously with the election by discrediting and invalidating the process before it’s ever been tried for the expressed purpose of denying Americans the chance to vote away from the traditional polling place as a result of the pandemic, in order to give himself an election advantage, by his own admission. In doing so he has set up the postal service to delay, again with the admitted objective as to stall/block the voting process.
            I’ve said for months… he’s acting like a caged animal.. and his actions coming ahead, combined with events he can not or chooses not to control, is going to make things far, far more worse than you can ever imagine. If you like the guy you enable the guy and by extension you want the country to go through all this for your own politics.

            Did you read Mary Trump’s book that contained her full evaluation as a psych professional as to his being the most dangerous person in the world? I doubt you bothered.

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          19. @Doug

            Democrats think it is okay to go to the grocery store, but we cannot vote unless we stay home and remove every bit of election security. And if Trump complains, that’s the problem?

            I sure hope most people don’t agree with you. Our republic cannot long survive the kind of illogical reasoning you and tsalmon exhibit.

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          20. Doug, though it might be comforting to believe the 4 million gun sales in the past month (I think?) were all to “first amendment nutjobs” those nutjobs already had guns. A very large percentage of those sales are to new gun owners.
            Conclude whatever you like.

            Liked by 1 person

          21. I (and we, being “gun nuts”, have all the ammo and guns we need and haven’t bought a one during this crisis) conclude the “we’re going to defund police and stop them from doing their jobs” probably isn’t a winning formula.
            Just seven months ago the price of ammo was extremely low….hadn’t seen it that low in many years. Price of ammo has shot up like something we’ve never seen.
            Usually you see this when a democrat threatens firearms in some way. This time it seems to be grounded in actual concern for self defense.

            Liked by 1 person

          22. Just to add, I mean compelling concern for immediate self defense. Not “some day this might come in handy so I need to be prepared”.
            Folks at the range tell us they’ve never seen so many new owners in the classes.
            Around the country, it seems to be the same story.
            The fact ammo is out everywhere writes itself.

            Liked by 1 person

          23. Ha! Nope Doug, I’m so typically average, white, heterosexual male that it never occurred to me that there could be such a variety in sexuality. It might seem like an odd thing to have an epiphany about, but you pick a topic here and there is such assurance of opinion on everything that it often leaves little room for the sublime in life, for the ability to have our minds constantly blown in large and small ways.

            “Struggle” is an interesting way to put it, but sex is something guys in particular have some opinion about, what is it, every 30 seconds, throughout our lives. And yet we seem to know next to nothing about something we think so binary and so basic to us. Even the experts get constantly baffled. In fact, if I could point to one thing that defines science, as I think it should also define religion, it would be a state of constant wonder and surprise, and the ability to change one’s mind with the grace of new epiphanies.

            The constant certainty of what to do with regard to coronavirus from people who know next to nothing about epidemiology here seems to lack that scientific humility. The same seems to be true about the endless sublime mystery that is God, don’t you think?

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          24. Give this a quick read as it does better than I can….
            https://www.cnn.com/2020/08/16/health/pandemic-covid-19-denial-mental-health-wellness/index.html

            I’ve felt for a long time this pandemic denial.. and subsequent trying to justify that “it ain’t all that”, is just a psych stage of denial of events. A way to express shock & awe over that which cannot be controlled. Making the wearing of a mask as a political threat to freedom is simply one such mechanism.. a symbol/icon, of that which they feel helpless to address in their minds. The other “reason” is to assign ANY attempt to contain the pandemic as a direct threat to Trump… therefore it’s all political.
            That’s not to suggest that there are not some seemingly “normal” folks who enjoy dragging out links to charts and graphs with endless depictions of body counts, using their calculators to extrapolate their own conclusions, finding their own “scientists” that agree with them… simply to prove to “the other” that they are wrong and that this is much ado about nothing. Perhaps much like you, I prefer to elect leaders who can function in actually leading.. and taking up leading me and the nation through a national emergency. Why the hell would I want to sabotage that, or second guess their efforts, by questioning the professional people our elected leaders put in place to help them make decisions?

            Regarding your little sexual epiphany.. I guess I’m not astute enough to pull out what you might be referring to exactly.. other than the chromosome thing. Although I might add… the more interesting subject is less about chromosomes and more about the diversity of desire that inspires humans to naturally engage in the act. It’s been the expression of desire that has crossed paths with religion constantly through history. One could even suggest that even God had some issues with that alone when he “immaculately” engaged with Mary to create his Son. After all, we can’t have pure lust. 🙂

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          25. I’ve felt for a long time this pandemic denial.. and subsequent trying to justify that “it ain’t all that”, is just a psych stage of denial of events. A way to express shock & awe over that which cannot be controlled.
            That might be true, but it seems natural for people who have had their lives upended to look around a question why, if events are so terrible dire, they haven’t seen anything personally. I now know maybe four people who have had the virus, and they all said it wasn’t as bad as flus they have had. That doesn’t mean it isn’t terrible and deadly for some, but again…people who are being asked to close their businesses and change their lives for the worse (socially, financially, etc) are going to question why and look around. This isn’t “psycho” it is very natural.
            By contrast, when we were at Yellowstone my spouse was putting on a mask while he entered a building. A woman of advanced age looked at him like he was poisoning her, marched to a corner of the room and stood with her face against the wall until he was done with his business (while wearing a mask). Then she left in a huff.
            That seems more like a mental problem to me.
            If she is really that bad off, she shouldn’t be vacationing out in public anywhere.

            Liked by 1 person

          26. You illustrate the proper point that this national panademic and all its “trappings” (broken economy, torn lives from death and jobs and business closings, etc.), is going to elicit all kinds of human responses… and among them are a shifting of mental health stress, suicides, etc. Many years ago I did a paper on what we might expect if some form of apocalypse did in fact occur and I found one governmental study that suggested beyond the normal lives lost by whatever calamity engulfed the nation or the world, that we could very easily lose up to 45% of the population to suicide or the “just giving up” for being unable to adapt to change. At the time I called it “the loss of Big Macs syndrome”. Normalcy is gone. We obviously are not anywhere near an apocalypse but the concept provides a basis for explaining the wide human responses we are getting. I contend a major aspect that is similar to an apocalypse, that we are currently experiencing that is adding to the overall fear and frustration… no leadership to provide any semblance of hope and faith for an outcome to collectively strive to achieve.

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          27. @Doug

            Democrats do in plain sight what they accuse Republicans of doing.

            THINK! Mail-in balloting will be a mess! There will be no security, and the Post Office is notoriously inefficient.

            Trump did not ask for mail-in balloting. When the Post Office union workers have already endorsed Biden, why would Republicans want such idiot nonsense? When an Obama appointee said that the Post Office would have problems with mail-in ballots, why should Republicans support it? When Nancy Pelosi would become president if the election is not resolved by January 20, why should Republicans support such craziness. Yet the mass media insists Republicans are crooked it they don’t support something so corrupt and stupid? Why do you take those people seriously?

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          28. @Liz

            I am tempted to blame that woman and maybe she deserves it. However, I am more discussed with the so-called professionals who won’t admit the obvious, destroying the economy is stupid. The cost far outweighs the benefits.

            All we get is this nonsense, “don’t you care about people dying?” Well, if people don’t have jobs, people die, and the median age of those people is much lower than 78.

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          29. You have made a First Amendment choice to express yourself publicly knowing full well you are taunting the “other side” to express themselves in a way that illustrates how “bad” they are in making you an “innocent victim”. So.. it’s not so much you are getting what you ask for but rather you are inciting a reactionary response to fulfill your personal agenda… and in that context you certainly would be getting what you ask for.

            So….as I said. I just said it in fewer words.
            Meanwhile, I’m guessing you’d say the same about a person (aka “innocent victim”) attacked for wearing a “vote for Biden” shirt? How about a Che Guevera shirt?
            Fact is, it is far safer to wear a BLM shirt at a trump rally than a trump hat at a BLM rally. Because the trumpers deserve it of course, right Doug?

            Liked by 1 person

          30. I made NO mention of any “side”. Trumpers, Biden’ers, take your pic. You present your ideology in an “in your face” way.. then you’ve made a conscious choice that you just might get something in your face. As always.. just because you can doesn’t mean you should. Ye reap what ye sow. What most seem to forget when saying they are exercising their First Amendment right is that they usually have to surrender common sense first.

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        2. Liz,

          Keynesian economist Paul Samuelson decades ago quipped the the stock market predicted 9 of the last 5 recessions. In this case, it is indisputable that the economy has retracted, tens of millions of people are unemployed and yet the stock market keeps going up. So is the stock market really telling us anything about the state of the economy or really in the state of living for most Americans? Well, as a retired person, it certainly effects my life.

          I called my financial planner to ask what he thought was going on and why the disconnect. He told me that, in an effort to prop up the economy in this crisis, the Fed’s interest rate policy is essentially giving away money to Wall Street right now. Short of buying T Bills at net negative rates (the Wall Street equivalent of stuffing it in your mattress), the market is the only game in town. This, he said, will create some bubbles and will continue to make the market volatile, but as long as the fed keeps this level of stimulus up, he doesn’t anticipate a crash. We’ll see.

          Another factor that I’ve read about is that many of the biggest players in the Stock Market, Finance and Real Estate are actually benefiting from the Pandemic and the Stimulus Aid so far. For example, Amazon and Netflix are doing better than ever. People are using their high interest credit cards and Payday loans to get by and stimulus money has allowed them to make minimum payments (until now anyway). Landlords and mortgage holders similarly have been kept afloat. All this means that, even though the bottom may fall out of this speculation at any time, for now the Market is rising on this tide of opportunity.

          What does all this mean? If I knew that I would be much richer than I am. If it all keeps going well (as it has for the past 12 years since we started pulling out of The Great Recession) then I see no reason to give Trump credit, but if it all crashes, I (and most of the country) will absolutely blame Trump. If anyone doesn’t think that’s fair, then I advise that they grow up. Life is many wonderful things, but fairness is definitely not one of them.

          I heard the other day that the reason why some people are more resilient than others is their ability to look inevitable suffering straight in the face and just say “That sucks” and then smile and move on. I’ve found this to be an essential truth about life.

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          1. @tsalmon

            Part of the reason the stock market is going up is inflation. When the government prints a bunch of money and the supply of good and services does not increase, prices go up because money is worth less. So, the stock market going up is not entirely a reliable indicator of government mismanagement.

            Nevertheless, people don’t buy stock if they expect the economy to collapse. Therefore, increasing stock prices does indicate public confidence in the economy.

            If we expected Trump to crash the economy then we should have invested more conservatively. What that means these days, however, is still a guess. Not many would have thought of investing in tech stocks as a hedge against Trump causing an economic collapse.

            Liked by 1 person

          2. When our son, Justin, was a teenager I was trying to advise him on how to be more conservative with his finances, and at some point he got frustrated and he just blurted our, “If you’re so smart, why aren’t you rich”. Now, if we had said that to our Dad with that attitude, he would have knocked us into next week. I just laughed. He had a point.

            Liked by 1 person

          3. But, if you recall, we knew everything about life when we were teenagers. I think I recall having used that all-purpose rebuke as well…. “If you’re so smart with [fill in the blank] then why don’t [you/me/us] have a better [fill in the blank] or “why didn’t you run for public office?”]. Although… if I wanted something… “You know.. you are right, Dad. I’ll remember that. By the way, can I have the keys to the car for the night?”
            Oh yeah.. lesson learned. 🙂
            Sadly, since I knew it all as a teenager it’s been all downhill since.

            Liked by 1 person

          4. @tsalmon

            You are rich. It does not take a billion dollars to be rich.

            A poor person has nothing and no place to put it.

            A middle class person has lots of things and not enough room in his home to store everything.

            A rich person has what he needs and and plenty of room because he gives away the junk he doesn’t need.

            If you have more than you need, you are rich. We get rich by living frugally and saving. We get rich by serving others. We get rich by working with friends.

            If we use our savings wisely, then we invest in businesses that help others. Those businesses will make a profit, and I am sure you know there are mutual funds that will do that for you.

            Liked by 1 person

          5. So true Doug. Here’s a similar quote from an American sage:

            “When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished at how much he had learned in seven years.”–Mark Twain.

            Liked by 2 people

          6. Ha! Very good quote!
            As my three were growing up there were those occasions where someone would attempt to assign some level of relationship between the liberties they learned about regarding the Founding Fathers and the rights of children at home. I had to often remind them that the Constitution and democracy existed only beyond the front door, and that on this side of that door it was a benevolent monarchy. During one such repeat of that speech my youngest spoke up in boredom mixed with defiance… “What’s beyond the back door, Dad?” I replied… “Freedom for me. I get to lock the door behind you.”
            My daughter… always the deep thinker, replied… “Child abandonment, Dad? In jail by noon, ya think?”

            Liked by 2 people

          7. “You are rich. It does not take a billion dollars to be rich.”

            Tom,

            I am truly rich, but I don’t think my modest wealth is any big part of that. Indeed, it is the most insignificant part of it. Money is only important to people who have none and to people who have way too much. I’m not sure what your point is.

            I’ve been contemplating what it means to really pray lately, what I should pray for, who I should pray to. In this day and age of televised and live steamed Christian worship, of churches grand and humble, all telling us how and what to pray for, that may be a weird question and you may wonder how it could be topical to this discussion, but I think it is pertinent to the issue of certainty as we address this coronavirus.

            If I were very poor or very rich, then money would necessarily drive me, so should I pray for more money? How about health if I or my family were sick? Whether very poor or very wealthy, sick or healthy, if God granted me money and vigor, would I then be rich in any meaningful way?

            If not, what do you think we should pray for that will make us individually and as a community truly rich in the view of God? An afterlife? Less suffering in this life? For myself? My family? My community? Why should I assume that suffering is not part of God’s plan or that an afterlife is the aim of this life now?

            If prayers for our hearts’ most material desires and prayers to abate our hearts’ most material fears may not find their mark in the mysterious plan of an infinite God, then what can I pray for that is certain? What if nothing is certain and God is endlessly sublime?

            Here’s a definition of the word”sublime”:

            “of such excellence, grandeur, or beauty as to inspire great admiration or awe.”

            I think in that definition, especially when we apply the word to God, by “awe” we must also mean an open appreciation in pure wonder at the beautifully limitless mystery of God. Could that kind of “awe” at the sublimity of God be a kind of prayer and could the answer to that prayer be the grace of some small or large epiphany?

            Some of us crave certainty: God is this. God wants this. This dogma is what I must do or think to call myself a Christian. And yet the most inspiring thing to me about God, about life, about love is to pray as constant contemplation and wondrous awe of the beauty of divine sublimity.

            I sometimes listen to the TED Radio Hour while I’m running the Biloxi Seawall along the beach.. The program that I listened to today as I slogged through a heat index of over a 100F was about human sexual biology. The first speaker was a person born with a vagina and an internalized set of testicles. She has an X and a Y chromosome but grew up to all outward appearances as a woman, including having natural breasts. However, she cannot have children and does not menstruate as she has no ovaries. Unlike even most women, her body does not produce testosterone so she does not grow any hair on her arms or legs and definitely none on her face. She was said to be quite stunningly beautiful.

            You may think that her sexual identity, which is called intersex, is rare, but apparently about two percent of the population is one of at least seven categories (and probably a spectrum of many more) of intersex combinations. That is about the same number of humans that are natural red heads. We simply don’t know about them. Many people don’t even know themselves unless they are genetically tested. In the past, parents simply chose a sex, had their children operated on and did not ever tell them about it.

            Some people have two Xs and a Y and some people have a double Y and an X. At one time in the late 20th Century, it was thought that the double Y persons, dubbed “super males” were more likely to be violent but these studies have since been debunked. (No one thought to speculate that the extra X females were more docile). In fact, it turns out that biological sexuality in the X chromosome, the one that every human has, only attributes for four percent of the work of that chromosome’s structure: The rest of the X chromosome does other unrelated things in the human body. The guy who originally discovered the X and Y chromosomal patterns did not want to call them the “sex chromosomes” because he thought it misleadingly simplistic.

            So my epiphany today was learning that sexuality is far more complex than a mere binary thing. God is extravagant. God is endlessly diverse. God is infinitely mysterious. We are one of his more extravagant and mysterious creations. God and all of God’s creations are endlessly, awesomely, beautifully sublime. Hallelujah! That was my little prayer and my small epiphany today.

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          8. You may think that her sexual identity, which is called intersex, is rare, but apparently about two percent of the population is one of at least seven categories (and probably a spectrum of many more) of intersex combinations.
            Think it is far more rare than that.
            Only about 1 in 400 male and 1 in 650 female live births demonstrate some form of sex chromosome abnormality.

            Liked by 1 person

          9. @tsalmon

            I don’t know about your TED talk, but homosexuality does not seem to have a relationship with any known genetic problems. The relationship between behavior and genetics seems to be distinctly less than obvious.

            Proverbs 30:7-9
            English Standard Version
            7 Two things I ask of you;
            deny them not to me before I die:
            8 Remove far from me falsehood and lying;
            give me neither poverty nor riches;
            feed me with the food that is needful for me,
            9 lest I be full and deny you
            and say, “Who is the Lord?”
            or lest I be poor and steal
            and profane the name of my God.

            Jesus provided a model prayer, Matthew 6:5-15. Of course, the psalms provide many more examples.

            Liked by 1 person

          10. Doug,

            You’ll have to look up one thread to read my response. Guess this has to too long for my small mind to keep up with. Later…

            Like

          11. Keynesian economist Paul Samuelson decades ago quipped the the stock market predicted 9 of the last 5 recessions. In this case, it is indisputable that the economy has retracted, tens of millions of people are unemployed and yet the stock market keeps going up. So is the stock market really telling us anything about the state of the economy or really in the state of living for most Americans? Well, as a retired person, it certainly effects my life.

            I read somewhere about thirty percent of the population lives paycheck to paycheck without any emergency savings at all. So it should be no surprise what happens when businesses are shut down for weeks/months and people aren’t getting any income. This isn’t some shocking bad policy decision, it is a foregone conclusion this would happen. The only shocking thing is the fact the market has gone back up so fast in response, while a good portion of the nation is still shut down.

            If it all keeps going well (as it has for the past 12 years since we started pulling out of The Great Recession) then I see no reason to give Trump credit, but if it all crashes, I (and most of the country) will absolutely blame Trump. If anyone doesn’t think that’s fair, then I advise that they grow up. Life is many wonderful things, but fairness is definitely not one of them.
            Thank you for being honest. That is exactly as I suspected. You’ve indicated actual policy decisions have kept the nation afloat (that was an interesting read, thank you, this all effects our life as well), but give Trump no credit and if they fail you will blame him. Trump is allowing states to make their own decisions (like grown ups) while encouraging the opening up of businesses to help get our economy on track. As far as I know, that is about all he can do.

            I heard the other day that the reason why some people are more resilient than others is their ability to look inevitable suffering straight in the face and just say “That sucks” and then smile and move on. I’ve found this to be an essential truth about life.

            Hear, hear!!

            Liked by 1 person

          12. “Thank you for being honest. That is exactly as I suspected. You’ve indicated actual policy decisions have kept the nation afloat (that was an interesting read, thank you, this all effects our life as well), but give Trump no credit and if they fail you will blame him.”

            You want me to give Trump credit for the bare minimum of doing his job? With some bumps along the way, the stock market has been on an upward climb for decades (it seemed like just the other day that we were amazed when the DJI hit 3,000). Because of various real estate related bubbles, the bottom fell out for a while under W, but it renewed it’s slow assent under Obama which basically, with more volatility, has continued under Trump. That increased volatility (which my financial advisor calls “opportunity”) has been a Trump phenomenon because Trump’s penchant for chaos creates uncertainty, however, absent a real crash, the market is the only game in town so investors scatter like prairie dogs when one sees his shadow, and then poke their heads back up and start voraciously feeding when it turns out to be nothing.

            I don’t remember you sitting around singing the praises of Obama because he didn’t crash the stock market or because we maintained a steady GDP growth rather than going into a steep recession. I appreciate that you appreciate my honesty, but I think that, if you are honest too, you’d admit that, if Obama crashed the economy and/or the stock market, you’d have rightfully been screaming that he broke it. Why would an honest person not treat Trump the same?

            The actual things that Presidents do that contribute to real long term economic fundamentals are mostly indirect, long term and tangential, and that if they even have a plan. But, especially in reacting to a crisis, a president can definitely (as Trump is doing) break things and make them worse. We don’t give our Navy ship captains medals for not sinking the ship while it is simply sailing along on a bright sun shiny day, but we do fire them when the ship sinks in a storm because of their bad leadership.

            As for the stock market having an effect on me, I meant because so much of retirement income is dependent on investments in that market, so yes, I will blame Trump if the bottom falls out. If this Pandemic had happened while I was still flying, I wouldn’t have blamed Trump for the storm, but I would blame him for how he sails or sinks the ship of state on his watch (and by any honest comparison with the rest of the developed countries, we are taking on lots of water). That’s the job Trump signed up for just as it was the game I and your husband signed up for as aircraft commanders.

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          13. I don’t remember you sitting around singing the praises of Obama because he didn’t crash the stock market or because we maintained a steady GDP growth rather than going into a steep recession. I appreciate that you appreciate my honesty, but I think that, if you are honest too, you’d admit that, if Obama crashed the economy and/or the stock market, you’d have rightfully been screaming that he broke it. Why would an honest person not treat Trump the same?

            If Obama had been president during a pandemic that required us to lockdown the country for months, I definitely would expect terrible consequences to the economy. This is as simple as, “if you bludgeon someone in the head, he will bleed”.
            No rocket surgery here.
            I didn’t post when Obama was president but I’ve supported all our presidents with the exception of Clinton. The last few months of the Obama administration I do have some issues with (and can site actual examples, not just “he’s insane” and vulgar, or whatever. And my problems with Clinton were also definitive by policy decisions he made, not feelings about what I think he was thinking.

            Liked by 1 person

          14. Side note: This is happening all over the world. Don’t know if folks have heard yet but a few days ago, Iowa was hit with a major storm that took out 43 percent of its corn crop. This is impact many things, probably to include the meat industry (which was already crushed by covid). This too will not be Trump’s fault…it’s going to happen.
            I read weather has impacted crops around the world (rice, potatoes too). Flooding has killed the spud crops in the ROK, and then there are the locusts….
            it’s a big, big bummer.

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          15. @tsalmon

            Weather never causes crop failures. It is all Trump’s fault. To stop 100 mph winds, our government needs to give away more of other people’s money.

            Like

          16. “Think it is far more rare than that.
            Only about 1 in 400 male and 1 in 650 female live births demonstrate some form of sex chromosome abnormality.”

            Not smart enough to know, but I think your conception of the data may disagree with the TED Radio Hour experts because you define the spread of diversity differently. The women speaker didn’t have a “sex chromosome abnormally.” She said she had a X and a Y chromosomes. If you simply looked at her basic chromosome letters without seeing her, you would say she is a normal man. I think you are missing the whole point of the sublime nature chromosomal science.

            And yet your default response appears to be an attempt to undercut the data? Why is a binary certainty of human sexual homogeneity so important to you? And even if it defies the, albeit admittedly incomplete, knowledge of the experts? Does that uncertainty make you uncomfortable? I’m curious. Why?

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          17. And yet your default response appears to be an attempt to undercut the data? Why is a binary certainty of human sexual homogeneity so important to you? And even if it defies the, albeit admittedly incomplete, knowledge of the experts? Does that uncertainty make you uncomfortable? I’m curious. Why?

            Because mental illness has a social component and transgenderism is catchy.
            And (although Trump has mercifully stopped the madness that is transgender recruitment in the military) I’ve seen the impact and vast resource drain on a squadron (air traffic controller “transgender” with profound mental issues, couldn’t work with anyone yet any form of action to ameliorate the situation was de facto discrimination. Unbelievable amount of time spent on this problem).
            I couldn’t care less if a person is different in their sexual preference/which sex they identify with. When it becomes an issue of social engineering, as it has, I care a great deal.

            Also: Unlike Doug, I don’t think folks should be targeted with violence of “have it coming” in some way. Where they are wearing a Biden shirt, Trump hat, or if it is an obvious man in a dress.

            Liked by 1 person

          18. Per Obama, I’ll state what I liked best about him (citizen Tom and I will probably disagree on this)…I’ll do it by using an example. Remember when the navy SEAL team rescued the ship from the pirates? There was no gloating, no “mission accomplished”, etc….just job well done. When they got bin Laden in the raid (which was hugely ballsy), he really didn’t make a huge self-aggrandizing deal out of it either (though it was a huge deal). He thanked others and didn’t make it about him, at least not publicly (since I am not a mind reader I’m not going to read his thoughts). I liked that.
            I’d prefer Trump be more gracious in the same way, but when I look at actual results (Obama blew up the ME, employed Hillary….Trump got us out of the ME, was integral to the defeat of all ISIS territory, and seems to have accomplished what no one thought possible with Israel/Arab relations), Trump’s results are better.

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          19. Liz,

            I saw the same troubles initially with racial and then with female integration in the military. Just change is hard work and it is rarely a straight and perfect line. Excuse me if I seem ambivalent to the challenges of of simple moral decency or as MLK called it, the terrible inconvenience of “the fierce urgency of now” when it comes to equal justice for that person in his or her present and only life. I do get how some issues can have a different priority than others, however, and if you are complaining about only that, rather than some aversion or discomfort with anything that challenges our arcane social taboos, were the real criticism, then I would completely agree with the whining.

            As for the various natural disasters going on, I think that you seem to be purposely missing my point, so let me put it this way. No one pays a major airline pilot “the big bucks” to take off and fly an airplane from point A to point B and land on a clear beautiful day with no crises. With very little training, a teenager could do it. Airline pilots are important for when things go wrong and for avoiding things going wrong. And at that point they are held by a standard of competence and blamed if they fall below that standard. No one blames Trump for the natural disasters, but compared to well, like the world, Trump is failing miserably. He needs to be fired.

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          20. Liz,

            I appreciate that you feel that you are being philosophically consistent in objectively grading Presidential performance. You know what I like about Trump as president? Nothing. It’s not that I disagree with EVERYTHING Trump has done, it’s just that nothing good Trump has done rises above the grade of mediocrity for what would be least expected of a President, and almost all of what Trump has done sinks the level of indecency, incompetence and sheer needless destruction to new lows not thought possible before.

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          21. Mattis fielded the following report on transgender military service.
            He has a good bit of experience on the subject of integration in the forces in which to form a comparison, I am sure:

            https://news.usni.org/2018/03/23/pentagon-report-recommendations-transgender-troops-serving-military

            Allowing transgendered people into military service (particularly based on a dubious Rand study without further investigation) is akin to a pilot purposefully flying into a thunderstorm.

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          22. You know what I like about Trump as president? Nothing.

            I believe you. So….Perhaps you aren’t doing your clearest thinking when it comes to the subject?

            Like

          23. “Allowing transgendered people into military service (particularly based on a dubious Rand study without further investigation) is akin to a pilot purposefully flying into a thunderstorm.”

            Transgenderism? Not my point earlier, although I suppose it’s related in some way that seems to really bother you and eludes me. The person in question was intersex, not transgender. She was born with vagina and buck necked would appear naturally as a beautiful woman in every way, but she also had a X and a Y chromosomes so in a purely binary world, she is male. What bathroom would you legally constrain her to? What jobs would you exclude her from? Is she some sort of hidden abomination, or is she simply part of the beautiful and sublime and endless variety of possibilities to be appreciated in God’s wonderful universe?

            If you want to have a discussion about transgenderism as a particular subset of that wonderful diversity, I suppose we can, but I don’t claim to understand it completely, and your selective anecdotes seem way less than helpful. I tend to start from an attitude of wonder, openness and acceptance rather than exclusion. And the complaint that the military is not the place to do social engineering falls flat in my mind. If the people who are sworn to support and defend the Constitution can’t live it, then who should? It’s not social engineering so much as it is an active defense of our highest institutional values. It is our primary job. If that’s too hard sometimes, then, well, who said the military is always easy. The fact that actual transgenderism is rare is a good argument for prioritization, but the rarity can also be a good argument that it’s not that big an adjustment. Just thinking logically, but like I said, beyond those generalizations, I’m pretty ignorant on the topic.

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          24. “I believe you. So….Perhaps you aren’t doing your clearest thinking when it comes to the subject?”

            You’ll have to explain it to my poor confused mind then. We aren’t running Trump for Miss USA you know. My criteria for not “liking him as President” isn’t because he doesn’t have a sparkling personality, or because he flunked the swimsuit competition. It’s because he sucks in every way as a leader.

            Well, that and Biden would look much better in an evening gown.

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          25. Tom,

            “I don’t know about your TED talk, but homosexuality does not seem to have a relationship with any known genetic problems.”

            I don’t recall mentioning homosexuality. The woman in question was intersex, a naturally occurring genetic variation. But you bring up an interesting point. If as a person who naturally and outwardly appears female including being born with a vagina and natural female breasts, but has a set of internal testicles and both X and Y chromosomes of a male, then is she a homosexual if she prefers guys or if she prefers women? What if she’s bisexual? If preference is strictly a pure binary moral “choice” to do something willfully right or something willfully wrong, and has no spectrum of genetic biological variation (something that seems scientifically uncertain, if not highly doubtful) then does this woman’s inability to have children either as a man or as a woman mean that she cannot have a moral, loving lifetime married commitment with the person who she chooses, and how and why would you police such a horrible ban? I think to do so would be to make some rather ostentatious decisions for God in the face of the obvious diversity of His creation. And if there really is no scientific or rational moral basis for legally confining her choices, why would we do it for any other consenting adult? Kind of disrupts your comfortable dogmas and arcane taboos about such things doesn’t it?

            I personally think that the preferable religious and scientific attitude is to choose wonder over dogmatic certainty except when a high level of the needless suffering of innocents makes balancing the moral conflict of choices unambiguous, but that’s just my mere opinion. The pomposity of divine authority in such things is above my pay grade.

            BTW, you really do need to look up what a “median number” is. It’s almost a meaningless data point the way you keep using it. We could have 80,000 dead babies succumb to COVID-19 and still have median dead person’s age be 78 as long as he was accompanied to the next life by 80,000 79 year olds. It also says little about the.total cost in suffering. The median age of 200,000 people dying from having their legs amputated might be 78, but it still sounds like something that even the young survivors might want to avoid.

            Liked by 1 person

          26. @tsalmon

            So you don’t recall? The LGBTQ subject is a mess. Why? Look at your example. You take a problem, the guy’s testicles did not manifest themselves, and then start talking about genetics, a different problem. If you can do that, I can do the same, and you can remain lost in your fog of wonder, ambiguity, and buzzwords all you want.

            There are lots of problems with no easy solution. Government does not have lots of good solutions; it just has the power to force on people solutions they don’t want.

            If someone manifests at birth as a female even though they have the genes of a male (and the problem is not quickly corrected ), nobody has a good solution. Sorry! The guy looks like a gal and feels like a gal, and he has a good excuse, but he still is not a gal, and there is no good fix for that problem. We can accept each other as we are, but we cannot in good conscience change the truth.

            Liked by 1 person

          27. We could have 80,000 dead babies succumb to COVID-19 and still have median dead person’s age be 78 as long as he was accompanied to the next life by 80,000 79 year olds.
            True. But we do know, definitely, that this virus does not seem terribly deadly to the young (with the exception of youth with co-morbidities). The death rate was around 0.04 percent for those 17 and younger last I checked. Yes, death is a high bar…but it is illustrative. I do not know how many children are hospitalized, but if the pediatric units were overrun I’m guessing (being a casual observer of the obvious, and the media has been beyond obvious) we would know.
            And this should be good news. It is to me. I don’t want to outlive my children, and I would fear a disease that takes children in particular a lot more.

            It also says little about the.total cost in suffering. The median age of 200,000 people dying from having their legs amputated might be 78, but it still sounds like something that even the young survivors might want to avoid.

            True. But experts don’t typically disagree that amputating healthy legs is a bad thing. They’re all over the map on this one.
            Just a few months back (2019, not far though pre-2020 might seem forever ago) we had studies with conclusive data that excessive carbon dioxide from confined environments was deleterious to physical and mental health.
            Just a few months back (see 2019) mask use was considered helpful (and necessary) when worn in isolation rooms…but the stuff had to come off when you left because it was contaminated. Now everyone is wearing dirty masks everywhere and that is mandated. No, the medical community is not universally on board with this. Not even close.

            Liked by 1 person

          28. Tom,

            If I remember correctly, at one time you were educated as a biochemist. At that point, did you know all the “truth” about that vast field of study or was there still a bit of mystery out to be figured out? I’m not that great at math and my understanding of this is slight, but isn’t the possible combinations of genes in a given chromosome something like factors of 10, or in other words, stars in the sky or grains of sand on all the beaches type numbers. Forgive me for being kind of boggled and amazed when you get to those levels of possibilities, much less the probabilities.

            The fact that the woman being illustrated even exists throws out any notion of the binary certainty of “truth” that you are trying to assert, and yet, like a child obstinately clinging to Santa Claus long after figuring out that Dad really is the guy in the red suit, you cover your eyes and ears to all wonder and curiosity for the comfort of a false (or at least misleading) certainly,

            To me this is a fascinating response from you, and it really explains a good deal of the anti-science bubble of thinking that persists in the small mindedness of Trumpists with regard to so many topics from the The Theory of Evolution to man induced climate change to now COVID-19 that Doug and MW keep trying to explore and puncture. Since “even you are not that stupid” that you don’t see that history is fraught with this conflict between comfortable taboos and superstitions and the wonderful uncertainty that comes from the discovery of hundreds of new wonders that in turn lead to thousands of new questions, I wonder how you, as a trained scientist, can keep squaring that circle? Perhaps you could explain it in terms that someone even as stupid as me can understand because I’m am open to the endless possibilities. My first question would be, as a trained scientist, why aren’t you?

            Interesting too is the moral aspect of your assertion of an absolute “truth” right in the face of an obvious inconsistency, as is the defensive anger imbedded in your response. “She” is obviously not absolutely a guy, nor is she obviously a girl, but some miraculous variation on a spectrum of possibilities that, as she demonstrates, is definitely not binary, and where God has purposely and intelligibly created a spectrum of variant possibilities that may again be on the scale of powers of ten. And she isn’t what she (or her parents) artificially “chose” her to be; she is exactly what God made her to be and yet you make an absolute moral assumption that she must be crammed into one of only two categories, even when it is quite obvious the “she” doesn’t necessarily fit, and without any regard to her freedom to chose where “she” may be most “pursuing her happiness” or is even comfortable. Why? If you can only explain it with sweeping dogmas, and angry denials, then have you thought about the possibility that your response is definitely not scientific and that it may be presuming overmuch for God about the mystery, the wonder, the extravagance, the endless diversity, the sublime quality of God’s infinite “truth”? Just a thought.

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          29. @tsalmon

            You just admitted once again that you don’t understand the difference between a man and a woman, but you are determined to force your understanding of marriage upon everyone.

            Have I proclaimed that I have an immense understanding of biology? Have I made my understanding the issue? No. That is what you have done, all the while justifying yourself with majestic ignorance.

            The law exists to protect from each other, not to force our beliefs upon each other. Because we are fallen creatures nothing works quite the way it should, not even the sexual differentiation between men and women. Nevertheless, we have to do the best we can. So, when some guy insists he is a gal and tries to enter the ladies room and participate in female sports, sensible people see a problem with that and protect the ladies.

            Do we have be mean and hateful to people who are confused about their sex? No, but we also don’t have to share and participate in their fantasies.

            Like

          30. Liz,

            Yes, I know. I thought it was obvious that I was being hyperbolic to illustrate a point. “Median” mortality is an almost useless data point, and it’s more misleading than helpful to policy makers. More important data points in judging risk and in doing a cost benefit analysis are the full spectrum analyses of those who get sick and those who die. What are the risk categories that have little to do with age? What is the monetary cost and the cost in pure suffering of those who get sick and don’t die? Which mitigation possibilities are cheap and effective and which are prohibitively costly.? When we change one thing (like sending the COVID sick to nursing homes) what are the predictable unintended consequences, and how do we remain nimble enough to adapt to unpredictable unintended consequences?

            If I were a policy maker, these are the things I would want to know from the experts constantly learning about and crunching the data before I adopted a national strategy . . . but unfortunately, we have an idiot leading us who is incapable of comprehending any of that.

            Like

          31. @tsalmon

            Median” mortality is an almost useless data point, and it’s more misleading than helpful to policy makers.

            That’s a wild, unsupported statement. Instead of the truth, it is just what you want to believe.

            The “median” is actually quite useful as is the “mean”. If you take the time to look at charts of the data, you will see that very few young people die from COVID19, and the median indicates as much.

            When the number of deaths is plotted against the age of those who die, we get an asymmetrical curve. Why would a statistician give us the median age instead of the mean (or average) age? The median age, because the curve is asymmetrical gives us a better idea of who is dying. When a relatively few people in their 40’s die, they can pull down the average age out of proportion to their numbers.

            Like

          32. I have to say, Tsalmon….
            You’d get a few more “likes” for your responses to my posts if you didn’t end almost all of them with some version of, “and….that’s why Trump sucks!!”
            😆

            Like

          33. “You just admitted once again that you don’t understand the difference between a man and a woman, but you are determined to force your understanding of marriage upon everyone.”

            Ha,ha! I think even a cursory legal analysis of this issue demonstrates that you seem to be deluding yourself as to who is the party using the power of government to “force” their peculiar religious viewpoint here and who is using the power of government to “liberate” themselves from your ideological tyranny, and who is the dictator and who is the oppressed. When someone forces you to get gay married, then I’ll cry in my koolaid along with you. Until then, let the tiny violins play on . . . .

            If truth is truth, have you considered that there may be little real difference between the questions that the inquisitive scientist (even though she may be an atheist) sends out into the universe looking for truth and the prayer that the humble saint sends out to God looking for the grace of revelation? Have you considered that both responses, both epiphanies, may come from the same infinite place? Have you considered in your belligerency that what the inquisitive scientist would call a healthy epistemological skepticism for the absolutism of even his own discoveries and for what a humble saint would call a prayer based upon a contrite faith rather than a dogmatic certainty might also basically come from the same place and are responded to by the same Being? Is that the “majestic ignorance” you are scorning me for? If so, gee thanks! 😊

            Like

          34. “I have to say, Tsalmon….
            You’d get a few more “likes” for your responses to my posts if you didn’t end almost all of them with some version of, ‘and….that’s why Trump sucks!!’
            😆”

            Yes, Liz. You are breaking my heart with these unrequited likes, but would you respect me after affording me that consummation if I lied to you to get there? 😉

            PS. I can’t seem to get the “like” function to work or I would “like” all your posts. But I tend to be way too immodest with my “likes” when allowed.

            Liked by 1 person

          35. The like feature is “iffy” for me, but seems to be working for the time being…requires me to go to the wordpress reader, which is confusing to use (at least, for me) in super-large threads like this one.

            Liked by 1 person

          36. “Because we are fallen creatures nothing works quite the way it should, not even the sexual differentiation between men and women. Nevertheless, we have to do the best we can. So, when some guy insists he is a gal and tries to enter the ladies room and participate in female sports, sensible people see a problem with that and protect the ladies.”

            How positively patriarchal of you Tom. Tell us Liz, do you feel that you need Tom and I to protect you in the restroom from the intersex lady occuping the next stall? Would you even know she was there? Fear not then good damsel, Tom will rescue you!

            Tom, if your naïveté in these matters were not guileless, it would be scary, but as it is, it’s just mildly amusing. 🙂

            Like

          37. @tsalmon

            Gosh! If only I was as superior to the rest of the human race as you, I could resort to ridicule instead of logic to “win” arguments. As it is I guess I will have to continue using logic. I will have also have to concede that persuading people is more difficult than mere logic allows.

            You may have not have noticed, but the biological misfunction that results in your intersex lady is actually extremely unusual. However, I little expertise in the matter. So, here are some references.
            https://www.urologists.org/article/conditions/intersex-conditions

            https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/ambiguous-genitalia/symptoms-causes/syc-20369273

            I have wonder about that TED talk.

            Like

          38. “I never said anything about being forced into gay marriage. I spoke of the definition of marriage.”

            I had a dream the other night that someone changed the law on marriage, and then after I woke up in a terrible fright, I remembered from my law school classes on marriage law and my practice of marriage law in Alabama 20 years ago that this has been happening for literally centuries. And then I laid my head back down and slept like a drunk baby. 😏

            The science says that sexual biology, much like most of Gods natural universe, exists on wondrously a diverse spectruM. Big surprise! You disagree with the science. But explain to me again how you are somehow victimized unless an intersex adult (or any adult) person is legally banned from “the pursuit of happiness” in marrying the consenting adult of her choice? Do you see a pattern here of science denial if the science does not fit your narrow ideology?

            Like

          39. @tsalmon

            You think two people of the same sex can marry, and I have to explain why they cannot? That requires an explanation?

            You have acquiesced to changing the meaning of the word marry. I have not. You think substituting the word “gender” for biological sex is scientific. Then you have the gall to infer you understand “science” and you are not being ideological. You are being scientific.
            All that matters is that your efforts to force your ridiculous beliefs upon others are supposedly loving and harmless.

            Try considering your position objectively, You are arguing that the truth doesn’t matter, that it is okay to lie so long as the lie seems harmless to you.

            We use words to express concepts. When you vote for people who change the meaning of words to score points, science is sacrificed to ideology and political expedience.

            Like

          40. “You think two people of the same sex can marry, and I have to explain why they cannot? That requires an explanation?”

            Well, in this case, you are the one affirmatively trying to legally ban someone else from doing something that they quite obviously legally and harmlessly can do and are doing all over the world. You can believe chocolate is an abomination, and no one should force you to believe otherwise, but what you are essentially saying is that everyone else must be banned from having chocolate too. That is the definition of the kind of government tyranny that you claim to abhor . . . unless, of course, it’s the kind of tyranny over others that you like.

            Like

          41. “You may have not have noticed, but the biological misfunction that results in your intersex lady is actually extremely unusual.”

            Tom,

            You are extremely rare. On the spectrum of humans throughout millennia, there has never been another being exactly like you. As a defining scientific truth of existence in a scandalously, extravagantly diverse universe, rarity is ubiquitous.

            Like

          42. @tsalmon

            Always personalize everything.

            Every snowflake is unique, but only humans are made in God’s image. It is what we share that gives us value to each other.

            The information in your TED talk does not seem to be accurate about the rarity of the problem you presented.

            Like

          43. Tom,

            Here is a link to a very good article on the subject of those born intersex:

            https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.todaysparent.com/baby/baby-health/intersex-when-a-baby-isnt-quite-boy-or-girl/amp/

            If you read the article, you will find that the science, like most science, in this one subset of sexual identity research is in an ongoing state of discovery. There appears to be a good deal of controversy, however, not on the facts as they are known to this point, but on what to do when a child is born intersex. The article seems fairly objective in discussing the current science and that controversy.

            It appears from this article and other articles that I skimmed, that the basic facts presented by those interviewed during the Ted Radio Hour concerning this particular phenomenon of human sexual diversity were essentially correct. The whole Ted Radio Hour program is here:

            https://www.npr.org/2020/08/06/899845707/listen-again-the-biology-of-sex

            I found it very enlightening. My point in all this was not to assert any expertise in this field, nor am I interested in gaining such expertise, but only to present something that should be obvious by now and, which any cursory research shows has become obvious to most scientist who practice in this area: the diversity of human sexual identity is simply not binary, but exists on a naturally occurring diverse spectrum. The thing to ask yourself when going against all the experts in this field, therefore, is why it is important to you that the experts be wrong in this area of scientific theory and in Evolutionary Science Theory and in Climate Change Science Theory, and finally, in the topic at hand, how we should characterize the level of the threat and the need for mitigation in the COVID-19 crisis?

            The common denominator in each of these controversies has nothing to do with the truth finding function of scientific epistemology, and everything to do with political ideology. Sorry, but something can still true even if it upsets a comfortable dogma and something can be ambiguous even if we crave certainty.

            This has been a great discussion, but it’s gotten too long and unwieldy for me to keep up with all the threads. Thanks for letting me participate.

            Like

          44. @tsalmon

            I found it very enlightening. My point in all this was not to assert any expertise in this field, nor am I interested in gaining such expertise, but only to present something that should be obvious by now and, which any cursory research shows has become obvious to most scientist who practice in this area: the diversity of human sexual identity is simply not binary, but exists on a naturally occurring diverse spectrum.

            There are only two functional sexes, and that has been obvious for a long time. When you get into this nonsense where you crow about being in the majority (whether you are or not), that is political BS and a blatant attempt at intimidation, not science. Either the facts support you or they don’t, and the facts obviously don’t support you.

            You want to be one of cool kids who mangles science to make it say whatever is politically expedient? You want to claim religious bigots are banning something that doesn’t exist? Well, you can “believe” whatever you want.

            I just want my grandchildren to know the difference between male and female. I want them to understand the difference between love and sex.

            Our bodies don’t always work properly. That’s normal, but we don’t want to normalize or glorify malfunctions, and that is what you are advocating.

            Like

          45. https://www.urologists.org/article/conditions/intersex-conditions

            In some children, the exact cause of their intersex condition may not be known, but in others the defect lies within the chromosomes, gonads, or anatomical sex. Frequency of these conditions depends upon the specific type. The most common cause of intersex conditions is congenital adrenal hyperplasia (CAH), which occurs in 1 out of every 15,000 live births worldwide.

            So the most common cause of this condition occurs in 1 out of every 15,000 births.
            This is not a common condition.
            It is in fact extremely uncommon, regardless of what the zany TED talker claims.

            Like

          46. I think you are missing the point. Uniqueness is not rare Liz. Like I said, rarity is ubiquitous. And uniqueness isn’t what’s rare – it’s what’s ordinary.

            Perfection of commonality in complex systems and organisms is what is rare, perhaps even nonexistent, although even that uniqueness must exist as some probability. But something about the way we think craves the fiction of a comfortable ordinary that doesn’t really exist. This is why arcane taboos linger as vestigial appendages in our minds long after they have been debunked.

            We even require an infinite God to be limited to one category of a just binary sexual possibilities. It’s our minds that are limited, not reality, and certainly not God.

            Oh well, I love this stuff, but I really have to move on.

            Like

          47. @tsalmon

            A word means something, but that doesn’t stop people from saying meaningless nonsense. Sigh!

            We are all unique, but we are all members of the same species. Otherwise, we would not be able to reproduce. In fact, intersex conditions create reproductive problems.

            Read the Bible. It makes more sense than either of us, and it directly contradicts you.

            Genesis 1:26-28 English Standard Version

            26 Then God said, “Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

            27 So God created man in his own image,
            in the image of God he created him;
            male and female he created them.

            28 And God blessed them. And God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth.”

            Liked by 1 person

      2. Sounds like the realization of Trump going “adios” is sinking in there, Tom.
        I can only answer for my own reasons Trump’s gotta go.. which I’ve explained many times over. I’m voting for Biden.. and perhaps by some future default (which I fully expect), Harris… simply as WONDERFUL choices to replace Trump. Why are they WONDERFUL, you ask? Because they have far more experience for the job than Trump ever had. Will Biden/Harris be better presidents? Of course, because anyone who posts on this blog would be better presidents than the demented, psychotic Trump! Will Biden/Harris presidencies be good presidencies in general as we traditionally rate presidents? I have no idea… and right now I don’t care.

        Debates? Who cares. It’s a show. I am guessing Trump will never do it because he has no knowledge about anything to talk in specifics… and Biden is the professional politician, beside being a real human being. Trump and his minions would hope that Biden does a couple verbal gaffs. Honestly… the bulk of country could care less about a debate right now. People are dying from a pandemic, the economy is faltering, society is emotionally stressed, and there’s no leadership. I am sure no one is in a mood for the mindless nonsense of a debate for entertainment value. Pretty much this is all about.. get on with the election, we have greater problems to solve.

        Like

        1. I am guessing Trump will never do it because he has no knowledge about anything to talk in specifics…
          He has done debates before. Many times. Against far sharper people.
          Who had cheat sheets (Hillary knew the questions, as I suspect Biden will).
          Why would he be afraid of Biden?
          And he has the benefit of a list of accomplishments. The latest a normalization of relations between Israel and the UAE.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. @Liz
            AFAIK, the pre-shared questions were only an inssue in the Sanders – Clinton debate, but not in the Trump-Clinton debate. The latter seems to have been sourced to a website that published fabricated stories.

            Like

          2. It is true we have no actual e mails proving Donna Brazile gave the debate questions to Hillary for the Trump debates. We only know (definitively, in writing) that she did so for the Sanders debates. However, she did work for CNN until October 14th (after the first two and 5 days before the last debate). Perhaps the presidency wasn’t as important to her as the primaries, or perhaps she became honest overnight.

            Liked by 1 person

          3. More the reason to skip any debates given Trump people are already sold on the idea that they will be rigged to the Democrats. Gawd only knows how many “Donnas” are out there marching with their backpacks full of debate questions ready to deploy at a moments notice.

            Like

          4. More the reason to skip any debates given Trump people are already sold on the idea that they will be rigged to the Democrats. Gawd only knows how many “Donnas” are out there marching with their backpacks full of debate questions ready to deploy at a moments notice.

            I guess I wasn’t clear. I’m all in favor of giving Biden the questions. I don’t care at all. I’ll even spot him a teleprompter and an ear piece where someone can feed him answers.
            I am completely serious.

            Liked by 1 person

          5. BTW, I’d be delighted to be wrong about this.
            If Biden shows up for a debate, and answers questions cogently I will gladly eat crow.

            Liked by 1 person

        2. Yeah, Doug, that pretty much sums it up better than I did.

          Liz,

          I think you miss the point. Nobody cares about the debates except Trump acolytes who think it will somehow save Trump from his rapid slide into the waste bin of American history? Trump’s victory in 2016 was a fluke, a hat trick, pulled off by the Russians. Let’s hope that now that we know where that lightening struck us, we will just have the common sense to just stay out of the storm this time.

          Like

          1. I’d say in general you’re right about no one caring about debates. As far as changing minds. But there were a couple of debates that did seem to change everything. The first televised debate between Kennedy and Nixon was one quintessential example. The other was (perhaps ironically) the Biden Palin debate. Biden did it before, let’s see if he can do it again. Stop hidin’ Biden!

            Like

          2. Just passing a bit of FYI to all… CNN this evening has one of their special reports.. Inside The Electoral College. Shjould be an interesting hour. Tag ads suggest mathematically speaking, Trump could win again losing up to 5 million in the popular vote this time. Looks to discuss the Constitutional history and intent of the Found Fathers. Yes.. I know it’s CNN.. and I know there will not be any FOX-like screaming and name calling of Liberals… but it might be worth a watch even if you have to turn on the TV for the first time in a decade. I am sure there are things even us “smart” people do not know.
            Seems to be on here on the West Coast at 7pm.. which suggests maybe 10pm in the East. Set a DVR. It might help to answer your election question there, Tom.

            Like

          3. @Doug

            Us deplorables really worry about the name calling by FOX News.

            I suppose CNN is going to tell us about the awful unfairness of the electoral college. Meanwhile, except for Russian collusion, which has been thoroughly investigated, the mass news media turns a blind eye to election security, especially when Democrats win. Since Democrats fight any attempt to ensure election security, we have no way of knowing whether H. Clinton actually won the popular vote.

            Like

        3. @Doug

          I hope Trump will win, but I gave up prophecy. When someone claims to speak for God and predicts the future to prove his claim, the Old Testament called upon the Israelites to stone the liar.

          Liked by 1 person

      3. As I am not American, I do not vote for either Trump or Biden. What I do see, is that from my point of view Trumps politics is desastrous for Western influence in the world (I am being selfish here) and hurting my American friends. I am aware, that our views clash on both counts, Tom. And yes, I think the damage done will be long lasting and hard to mend; not because of Trump, but because of the large parts of the American population that are happy to walk with him and cheer him onwards, sharing his views and values: “America first! America only!” does not leave any oxygen for foreign friends.

        Like

        1. @marmoewp

          Technically you don’t vote in American elections, but you are trying to “vote” by exercising influence over those who do.

          Trump has never said “America only” or even implied any such thing. He has stated our government’s job is to represent the interests of the citizens of the United States. He has not advocated a zero sum game, “we win, you lose.” Trump has clearly advocated a “win-win” policy. He expects, and he even advocates that other nations to pursue their own self interests.

          Stop and think. Peace is in the self interest of THE PEOPLE of every nation. So is free trade, protection of the environment, the promotion of human rights, the spread of knowledge, space exploration, and so many other things. What gets in the way is the belief that “you” have to lose for “me” to win. Lots of people think that way, and they are wrong.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Omigawd. Trump is an nationalist/isolationist. There is no win-win in any business deal he has ever made. He’s completely out for himself at the expense of the other by bullying and intimidation. That sounded nice, Tom.. but it was only in your Trumpain imagination.

            Like

          2. If the elephant in the room says “If everybody looks only after his own interests, everybody is served”, acts on it, and takes to bullying, if it does not get its way, the “Elephants First!” might be a slogan you can use to lie to yourself that it is fair, but to any non-elephant it is indistinguishable from “Elephant Only!”

            But be assured, you have managed to make my head spin, by redefining “voting”, alleging that Trump imposes tarriffs in defence of free trade, left the Paris accord and rescinded environmental protection regulations in order to protect the environment, or is a stout protector of human rights in Russia or China. It is precisely Trump who made “you have to lose for me to win” political doctrine. NATO is about cooperation, the WHO is about cooperation, the UN is about cooperation, the EU is about cooperation. And only Trump found out, that all of them were only established to exploit the USA. And yes, Trump is even trying to weaken and break up the EU, a Western ally, so he can subsequently deal with the weaker remains. So yes, all of that is “America Only!”, no matter how you want to put lipstick on a pig and pretend to sound reasonable.

            Like

          3. I don’t know enough about international trade to understand every aspect of our trade agreements, but I do know that tariffs on Chinese imports are closer to free trade than no tariffs. Their industry is subsidized (the EU subsidizes Airbus as well and makes it very difficult for Boeing to compete).

            Like

          4. Four aluminum smelters that had been shut down reopened in 2018. There had been only four operating (the majority had been shut down as we came to rely on imports…which can be a security concern since we need aluminum for our aircraft).

            Liked by 1 person

          5. @marmoewp

            You seem curiously determined to find fault. You have told me you a German. The regulars here know it. So I chose not to make a needless distinction.

            Trump has said what he means by America First. Yet instead of finding fault with China, Russia, Iran, or some other militaristic state, you are complaining about Trump, who has shown a distinct lack of desire to invade anyone. Instead, he takes flack for trying to bring our military forces back home, especially when our allies seem unwilling to pay for their own defense.

            If you see a threat in that, you are weird.

            Like

    1. What makes this all the more amusing (it’s actually not.. it’s quite scary) is the constant facial expression of confusion on the interviewer. 🙂
      Ah yes.. our President in action. :/

      Like

    2. @tsalmon

      WOW! tsalmon finally presented “evidence”, a bunch of out of context clips with a thoroughly hostile reporter. You do realize that Biden looks awful even though he only does interviews with reporters who are on his side?

      Still, my favorite was when the reporter had to remind Obama that Islam is not his religion.

      Why for example is the amount of testing relevant? Why do Democrats focus on deaths relative to population instead of the number of cases? There are a lot of cases that are asymptomatic. When we add those cases, we look better. On the other hand, because our hospitals get more money for COVID-19 deaths, they assign anything that looks even remotely like a COVID-19 death to COVID-19.

      Since we don’t gather statistics the same way, comparing the COVID-19 stats between different countries doesn’t tell us much, but people insist upon making the compari. Trump prefers deaths relative to cases, but that hostile reporter just wanted his gotcha moments, not an explanation.

      Like

      1. Ok Dr. Tom, when you got that degree in Epidemiology, then you must have read Trump’s manuals, uh, I mean “the books”. The ones where Trump invents tests for diseases that don’t exist yet, the ones where Trump constantly takes credit for a Bill that Obama actually signed and, you know, those books that say that Trump has done more for “the blacks” than anyone since Lincoln because Trump simply signed a Law that had tremendous bipartisan support and that he had nothing to do with crafting.

        The poor man is deranged. As soon as Trump gets with a reporter who fact checks him in real time, his magical world of lies, outrageous self aggrandizement and flagrant whoppers just collapses.

        This is why Trump is sinking in the polls. You just can’t lie to or spin a virus or the 1000 or more extra lives that it takes per day, or how awful Trump has done in international comparison. Trump may actually turn Texas blue. And the more Trump drops in the polls, the more he has to get out and appeal to voters outside his Faux News safety zone, and the more his delusions collapse around him. Biden need only get out of the way of Trump’s own self destruction.

        Like

        1. @tsalmon

          As a lawyer you must have taken some courses in logic. Sure doesn’t show.

          Ok Dr. Tom, when you got that degree in Epidemiology, then you must have read Trump’s manuals, uh, I mean “the books”.

          You don’t understand something. So, I don’t. I am not allowed to because I am not a certified “expert”. Bill Gates would be disappointed to hear his operating system doesn’t work because he doesn’t have a degree.

          The Coronavirus (COVID-19) is not really new. It is just a new strain of Coronavirus. The common cold is a Coronavirus.

          When someone comes up with new breed of dog, it is still a dog. Like the common cold, COVID-19 is highly contagious, but it is not especially lethal. Unfortunately, at first it scared people because we thought it was more lethal than it is. Now it is so involved in politics it has become a mess to deal with. Anything and everything, no matter how ignorant or foolish, has to be uses castigate Trump. That’s nuts!

          Like

          1. Dr. Tom,

            It’s not that I don’t think you’re smart, or that you are incapable of rapidly acquiring knowledge and understanding in advanced fields that takes actual experts a lifetime of study and experience to master, it’s just that when your opinions go against the vast majority of those experts worldwide, including those on Trump’s own coronavirus virus task force, that I tend to think that you simply don’t know what you are talking about. Yeah, I know, the virus, the economic damage it’s caused, it’s all a grand conspiracy to make Trump look like a foolish, self important, incompetent. It couldn’t be the simplest, most obvious explanation – that he just is a failure as a leader and always has been.

            Like

          2. @tsalmon

            Actually, politics, not science, is what is driving the nonsense you are repeating. When Big Tech companies are even censoring the president, things have gotten out of hand.

            I suggest you carefully consider what I have said. I have not said anything too complicated too comprehend. I have not propose complicated conspiracies. In fact, the ridiculous accusations against Trump involved more conspiracies than anything I have proposed. Yet your standard reply is abysmally weak. The mass media’s approved “experts” disagree. If that is the best you can do, you are not thinking for yourself. All you are doing is accepting the rule of “expert” bureaucrats. That just another type of dictatorship.

            Like

          3. Yes Dr. Tom, the whole world has screwed this thing up and we in the US are doing it just right, thanks to our “very stable genius” Dear Leadrer, Donald J. Trump. They are pitying us when they should be envying us. We are doing so well. Good luck convincing anyone of that theory.

            Think of it this way. Sometimes when encountering an anomaly while flying, I would receive a number of unrelated cues and warnings. Maybe certain lights might come on accompanied by seemingly unrelated control surface pressures and other visual and auditory phenomena. For the novice, the tendency might be to tunnel vision in on the loudest thing and miss the real underlying systemic problem, which could be a fatal mistake.

            I don’t know jack about epidemiology or virology or infectious diseases, but it seems to me that you are making that kind of rookie error. You’ve learned enough to maybe solo and you’re trying to correct the 747 captain on how to fly and handle a major aircraft malfunction.

            But of course, you don’t see it that way. All the experts must be wrong just because they aren’t always perfect.

            Liked by 1 person

          4. Perfect MW! Can you imagine how excruciatingly frustrating it must be for an infectious disease specialist like Dr. Fauci, somebody who has spent longer in this field than most people have been alive, to be constantly told by nimrods that he’s getting excited over nothing, it’s just the common cold after all?

            Like

          5. @tsalmon
            You have admitted you don’t know anything. Why are you still offering any opinions? How do you even know who is qualified to be an expert?

            Like

          6. @Tom
            Just about 1 in 5 common colds are caused by different strains of the Corona virus, at all. The most common cause are Rhinoviruses, plus a few others. And with howlers like that under your belt you want to admonish tsalmon? Really?

            Like

          7. @marmoewp

            So, the expression “common cold” was developed before we discovered viruses. The fact is you just confirmed what I said.

            You and tsalmon are insisting that everyone run in terror from fish you have deliberately confused with great white sharks because you so badly want to remove Trump from office. That is not a howler. It is not even funny. It is really quite sad.😢

            Like

          8. Yeah, I know, the virus, the economic damage it’s caused, it’s all a grand conspiracy to make Trump look like a foolish, self important, incompetent. It couldn’t be the simplest, most obvious explanation – that he just is a failure as a leader and always has been.

            The Western Sahara and Chad must have the best leadership in the world!
            They barely have ANY cases!

            Liked by 1 person

          9. Oops….think I posted in the wrong place. Trying again…
            It is the unique period of extreme incompetence of the Trump administration’s handling of this crisis that you must dig down to the Chad leadership to find adequate comparators. Why not just look at our closest allies in Europe and Asia

            Most of Europe and Asia pale compared to the fine examples of Chad and the Western Sahara which have been barely touched by covid. If this truly comes down to leadership (and not things like…say, demographics and comorbidities, et al), that great leader of Chad (whoever he is) is your man!

            FWIW, mortality rates for the US were 1⁄3 that of most of Europe (and dropping due to new treatments) also had greatly expanded testing ( ~ 600k a day).

            Liked by 1 person

          10. Yesterday I posted a link to the CDC with updated graphs. The curve is down for hospitalizations (by a lot, knock on wood).
            Remember how the virus started…in Asia.
            They are getting spikes now in the ROK (and as folks congregate in the malls due to heavy flooding I expect more in the near future, though I hope not).
            The US will never be like Singapore, we have gum on our sidewalks…Short of the absolute autocracy the democrats actually accuse Trump of being while simultaneously disparaging him for not being autocratic enough with the covid.
            Our population is fat, and we have a lot of comorbidities (to include obesity).
            If Trump said we all have to breath tomorrow a good portion of the population would hold their breath until they turn blue.

            Liked by 1 person

          11. I’d not worry too much… Trump has his new “yes” man on the task force, Dr. Atlas, to command the “USS Nothing-To-See-Here” on our next three hour tour. Let’s see who resigns first.. Birx or Fauci.

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  2. Thought this was worth sharing:

    Friend of ours is a special ed teacher (works for a charter school). She visited last month and mentioned the school closures have been devastating for these children and their parents.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s a national emergency. It’s short-sighted not to expect sacrifices will need to be made.. whether it’s a wartime emergency or a pandemic. On ANY good day in a “normal” America there is always some segment of the population, some element of society, some culturally “invisible” collection of people, who feel slighted, are in fact slighted, and have had problems needing to be addressed that have been ignored for one reason or another. People feeling a lack of justice, equality, representation… the list is seemingly endless. The reality is that a “normal” day in America is that not all people feel normal. So to presume that during a national emergency, especially an emergency involving a disease running rampant across the land, that additional “unfairnesses” will not be realized as we continue to lumber along like a ship without someone at the helm… is just living in a void and ignorant of reality.
      Personally I think the country needs to suck it up a bit. The entire world is going through this.. so no country is going to somehow “surpass” us in some alt-reality. If the economy takes a dump for a year… I am sure we can absorb it. If we don’t want people.. our family members… to die, then we need to focus on the problem… not dream up measures to go around it like it’s not really happening, or listening to our “leaders” who suggest this will “all go away soon.”.
      A lot of things are going to be devastating to a lot of people before all this is over.

      Like

      1. @Doug

        The median age of the people dying from COVID-19 is 78. Unless a victim of the virus is almost dead, the odds are extremely high they will easily fight off the virus and recover. Therefore, the cost of quarantining everyone outweighs any possible benefit.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. What’s with all this comparison to death figures all the time? The threat from Covid, while randomized deaths across all ages to be sure, is far more about the drain and stress on the health care system, the long lasting hospitalizations on the many that survive, the long lasting effects that will need medical attention long after “making it through”, and the generalized fear in the randomness itself making people stay away from public contact, thus affecting the economy.. the unemployment as a result. Those stats you and other keep quoting about the disease not affecting everyone doesn’t take into account the minimum two week quarantining.. which means leave work and go home, and come back in two weeks. Multiply that by millions… and the unstable workforce affects the economy. Deaths are but a simple component of the entire threat to the nation. The other number constantly tossed out by Covid naysayers is that supposedly the health care facilities haven’t reached their capacity yet… that there’s enough equipment and staff to tend to everyone affected. Not in any of the hard hit hospitals I’ve heard about. Staffs are getting sick themselves from PPE still in short supply, long hours, PTSD issues…. staff deaths.
          What world are you living in?

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          1. @Doug

            I live in a world where one’s chance of dying from COVID-19 is quite small. The fear is far out of proportion to the threat. Because something bad could happen, who stops driving a car, using electricity, using food and drugs from the grocery store, climbing stairs and ladders, using elevators, …..

            We are all going to die, but COVID-19 is not having much effect on our life expectancy.

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      2. It’s short-sighted not to expect sacrifices will need to be made..

        It is true sometimes there are no good answers…but do you realize you’ve made exactly the opposite argument on this thread alone?
        Your measure seems to be WDTD (what did Trump do?) and then you set up your opinion to be the opposite, and justify it. Whether it is bombing a terrorist (bad if Trump did it! Look…some folks got concussions!) or opening the economy back up (oh noes! Trump wants people to die!).

        Liked by 1 person

        1. There’s a HUGE difference in accepting one’s circumstances as a matter of current reality, and not trying to do anything about it. The first step is accepting where you are at then trying to remedy the problem. Not ignore the problem and assume the circumstances will just go away. Trump and his minions just refuse to accept the emergency of it all and how it echos through our culture and economy… hence no need for trying to fix anything… no need to be made to wear masks… and surrender your freedoms.. no, it’s “God given rights!”, forever.

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        2. There’s a HUGE difference in accepting one’s circumstances as a matter of current reality, and not trying to do anything about it.

          True…

          The first step is accepting where you are at then trying to remedy the problem. Not ignore the problem and assume the circumstances will just go away. Trump and his minions just refuse to accept the emergency of it all and how it echos through our culture and economy… hence no need for trying to fix anything

          Perhaps you missed it, but there was a nation wide lockdown (New York City ignored for the first two weeks). Also a thing called the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act). A $2.2 trillion economic stimulus bill.
          One might argue over specifics, but I can’t imagine how or why anyone could claim there was no “acceptance” or attempt to “remedy the problem” whatsoever.

          FWIW, this is an interesting graph. This should be good news for everyone.
          https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/covid-data/covidview/index.html

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Hm…the link didn’t seem to work for the chart I was referencing. Attempted to post on twitter and it said it didn’t take the “gif”.
            I’ll just link to this twitter post which offers similar information:

            Like

          2. I keep my fingers crossed, that your hospitalizations go down, but please note that these are percentages of all ED visits, not absolute numbers.

            Thank you! 🙂

            …And yes, point taken on the ER visits (though I think those can be a pretty good indication)…the first link showed a few other charts. The one I was trying to upload without success was the one entitled:
            Laboratory Confirmed COVID-19-Associated Hospitalizations

            Liked by 1 person

  3. For all the reasons that Doug and MW have already given, it’s so obvious that Trump is a failure as a leader that, unless Trump can use the Bar Justice Department to trump up an October fiction to surprise us with bogus charges against Biden that anyone actually believes, this will be a tidal wave election.

    Trump isn’t a leader and never had been. Trump is a wrecking ball; he sabotages constantly his own responses to everything, including the Pandemic, and then he looks around for scapegoats and straw men and women. Tom excuses all this corruption and incompetence by constantly conjuring up the ghost of President Hillary ruling over some worse hellscaped dystopia, but as things just get worse and worse, and we see virtually all our old allies and enemies doing better than we are, it’s getting more and more difficult to mythologize the buck stopping in these alternative universes of apocalypse, and average voters are just pissed at the apocalypse presenting in their own back yard, their own schools , churches, work situation, sports teams, home life, etc.

    I’ve been slow to realize this even though many here have basically been saying it all along, but I’ve finally figured out that, from the beginning, the allure of Trump to this subset of social conservatism, particularly Evangelicals, has actually been the dream of apocalypse. There is no worry or even real defense of Trump’s monumental incompetence or his blatant corruption because Trump is exactly the nuclear suicide weapon that you want. Trump’s worthlessness is the plan, not a bug. You are hoping to use Trump to bring it all crashing down so that you can build some new cross between an early Puritanism, a Randian Galt’s Gulch and some Jeffersonian rights-protecting Federalism, but without the Founding Fathers’ Deist distrust of clergy and of religion in general. The idea is that, if we explode it, they will come, that somehow the seeds of this utopia will naturally blossom out of the ashes of an America that, against our God given instincts, became too globalized, too urbanely elitist, too multiculturalist, too vacuously and morally unmoored. Am I wrong? I don’t think this would turn out the way that you think it would though.

    Before the Pandemic, Ross Douthat wrote that the slow decline of America and the West into decadence could continue to bloat itself on a gluttony of McDonald’s burgers and reality TV (and Pornhub) circuses for hundreds of years to come. According to Douthat, the great empires rarely fizzle out all at once, even with plagues and barbarian invasions far worse than COVID-19 or a few starving Central American refugee families banging their heads against Trump’s mighty not-so-weatherproof wall.

    Even if the human wrecking ball to competent government, Donald J. Trump, could actually tear it all down at once, the more likely replacement, the one we would all scream for when the Four Horsemen were inside the village square, would be either a Chinese style collectivism or a Putinist authoritarianism, or some similar chimera of the two, and not some redux of a WASP male oriented Galt’s Gulch.

    I’m more hopeful, however. I think that the political parties will do what they’ve done over and over again. They will transform to meet the necessary historic need for forward progress, and one will fill the power vacuum opened up by the other. The pendulum will swing knocking Republicans on their butts, and the Parties will move out of the way to a new opposing stasis to keep from getting hit on the next rebound.

    David Brooks wrote an excellent column on this in the Sunday NYT if anyone is interested.

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    1. T.. you referring to that article that suggesting “Potemkin City” building around the President? Interesting term to use.. and accurate as well. It rather reminds me of the European leader back in the 30’s and 40’s who’s own staff didn’t want to make him angry either.. and refused to wake him up when the enemy was attacking. This is how you “handle” authoritarian leaders… you stop advising and counseling because the leader becomes much too arbitrary and unpredictable, in favor of trying to contain his mood swings by feeding him nonsense.

      Liz was not overly accurate when suggesting I was above normal in our “talking past each other”(perhaps fro her vantage point). Trump Conservatives prefer discourse on what he does as a matter of policy.. while I much prefer discourse on the “why” he came to the conclusions that ends up being his policy. Trumpians prefer to argue the “What’s wrong with Trump’s decision?” as if it’s all about a yin/yang of political philosophy. I much prefer to ask, “What led to Trump’s decision?”. To me the thought process is most important and completely open to judgement and debate. For the most part the “why” Trump does something.. anything… is completely arbitrary and totally impulsive based on his own personal biases and bigotries. To me THAT’s where both sides of this are talking past each other. If nothing else each and every time he steps in front of a microphone and opens his mouth his lies are so profound that after each blabber there has to be fact checking.

      I started this on my blog here… January, 2017.. for this reasoning… he’s a complete mental case.

      https://findingpoliticalsanity.com/why-i-dislike-this-guy-as-my-president-2/

      Even his professional niece wrote a book on the family dysfunction. The man has fired a huge number of his appointments.. more than any president.. simply because they didn’t suit him…. or weren’t loyal. That’s an awful lot of “bad” hirings, by any employer.
      He’s mentally ill, incapable of doing any job. Oh sure.. he managed to siphon money along the way to make himself rich… but by every other measure he was a moral business loser. His base support loves his destroyer/disruptor Type A flamboyant persona because a lot of them are similar in real life… and/or just hate anything Liberal because of immigration, abortion, and the Clintons.
      But.. what made Conservatives think he was the Savior is the same thing that will assure his loss in November… his own mouth and his own behavior. Liberals don’t have to do a thing.

      Like

      1. It rather reminds me of the European leader back in the 30’s and 40’s who’s own staff didn’t want to make him angry either..

        So similar. I’m reminded in particular of when the “European leader” was praised by a Jewish businessman. Then did that photo op where he held up that can of Gefilte fish with the thumbs up.

        Trump Conservatives prefer discourse on what he does as a matter of policy.. while I much prefer discourse on the “why” he came to the conclusions that ends up being his policy. Trumpians prefer to argue the “What’s wrong with Trump’s decision?” as if it’s all about a yin/yang of political philosophy. I much prefer to ask, “What led to Trump’s decision?”. To me the thought process is most important and completely open to judgement and debate.

        We’re actually in agreement here (who says miracles don’t happen?).
        I am more concerned with actions (aka “what he does”) than “thought process” (aka “why he did this”. As the one requires observation, the other mind reading.

        Guess I’ll go back to my Aryan Nation cult of rabid apocalypse enthusiasts compound. About 10% are really dumb and kind of scary, but the other 90% are safe to be around because they are FBI informants of some sort.

        Liked by 1 person

          1. I’m trying to imagine what it must like to truly believe that half of the population is either racist or actively cheering on the apocalypse.

            Liked by 1 person

        1. Guess I am confused (not unusual, you’d likely say)…
          You said…

          “We’re actually in agreement here (who says miracles don’t happen?).
          I am more concerned with actions (aka “what he does”) than “thought process” (aka “why he did this”. As the one requires observation, the other mind reading.”

          Not sure what we agree on… as I prefer the what-you-call, mind reading. Just going along with what he does is simply submission without questioning the “why”… which requires a level of actual trust. This is the avenue of the questioning required for every single action he has ever taken since day one. Call it.. “trust, but verify”.. and he does not pass muster to me because I always, 100%, question his thought process over his actions.
          I’ve said often enough.. hell, just put Pence as Prez to run the same policy agendas… just not Trump. That could very well happen in the coming months if Wonder Boy gets Covid and succumbs to the disease or languishes in a coma for weeks on end. Biden could very well end up the same way… before or after the election. The elephant in the room no one dares mention publicly is that Biden’s VP choice will very likely end up president… so that might be where we want to place emphasis.

          Sadly, if Trump gets Covid and is taken completely out of action his supporters WILL claim Liberals weaponized it to remove him from office… and then how will that hit the streets?
          It won’t be apocalypse level.. but it will be something we have never seen before as a nation.

          Like

      2. Doug, this Brooks column is titled “Where do Republican Go from Here?” in today’s NYT.

        My point was not that we disagree on the right or wrong of what Trump says or does, or even the “why”. My point is that, for some here, Trump as the destroyer of worlds, regardless of why Trump himself reasons it or whether he even has a plan, is itself the reason “why” they like Trump. They want it all to come tumbling down.

        Look at how public schools always comes up in every debate here. The thought is that, if by design or a pandemic inspired implosion if its own making, public schools will suddenly be destroyed and the masses will demand home schooling or religious
        schools to be built on the ashes. Personally, I think it foolish to believe that families where both parents are working sometimes multiple jobs just to get by are going to suddenly demand homeschooling or expensive private schools once their usual public babysitters are gone. It’s the modern day equivalent of “let them demand to eat cake instead” if Republicans ever manage to kill food stamps for the working poor.

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        1. Oh I hear ya on that, Tony. I suppose being a bit pragmatic in some things I tend to follow a prioritized process to solve problems. Number one here is containing Covid, at all costs and without hesitation. Number two is economic stability, which can easily transition into getting education back up and running. But we aren’t doing that cause it’s all haphazard… sloppy, 50 different ways of total confusion.
          Good article, by the way. The Republican party is in a complete mess.. or nothing like it was because its been replaced by Trumplicanism.. which in itself is ill-defined mindless meandering.

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          1. Doug,

            I guess I’m fascinated by what happens to the Republican Party after Trumpism because I sense that that is where real progress in democracy lives (assuming our democracy continues its fragile institutional moment in history).

            I don’t see anything pragmatically workable in the ideology of the extreme Democratic Left, nor do I believe they will really control much a Biden administration. What I do see is refreshing return to center left problem solving just to get us out of the chaos of numerous crises Trump will have left us in. There are too many entrenched interests and too much infighting in the Democratic Party, however, for much real innovation to surface out of that stagnancy.

            On the other hand, the Republicans are caught in their own Trumpian disarray. Out of the failure of Trumpism lies opportunity. Political parties have stronger survival instincts than crocodiles. Like Brooks, I think the need to survive may spark a vision of government that actually works in the 21st Century. Either way, the Republican Party or what it becomes will be where all the action is.

            Like

          2. Essentially I agree. While I have traditionally been a card-carrying Republican to this point, I’ve always been a kind of liberal Conservative… not preferring to muddy up ideology with some extended idea of gross nationalism. But it’s been the old school Republicanism that does favor some globalism exploitation.. more the choice of free capitalism. I’ve owned three businesses in the past.. one with 30 employees, so I tend to admonish certain governmental restrictions. Yet having said all that I am all about negotiation and compromise, not this vehement my-way-or-the-highway. I also believe in some economic and fiscal responsibility. But Republicanism has to be re-defined before I can keep up with it.
            But like you illustrated, the Dems are a fragmented bunch as well. Socialism-style programs are one thing in our democracy, but this Socialist subset is a bit off the mark. I do also see a center-left effort arising from Biden. But here’s the greater substance that I (hope) see… a return to American Presidentialism… returning to traditional norms of respect for the office and the Constitution. I tend to sway more globally in my politics and we need desperately to fix that and restore American respect in the world. American Exceptionalism has somehow taken a somewhat sour connotation…. but we can certainly get “some” of that back.
            This election I’m doing my own little “defiance” by using my Republican vote to be registered as not voting for Trump on the stats simply to humor myself… then next year switching to Independent.

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          3. Doug,

            As for the return to American exceptionalism, I too hope not too much damage has been done both externally and internally for some of that to happen. If nothing else, however, and even if in looking back Trumpism became the moment after we and the world saw the stain where America as a model reached its high water mark, then even then we could benefit from a little loss of the sense, rather than the actuality, of our own innocence. We really do need to come to terms with the demons that will continue to haunt us unless we face them head on.

            We need to grow up and get over our national cognitive distortions, especially this all or nothing puristic view that exhibits in “cancel culture” on the far Left and WASP male domination revanchist nostalgia on the far Right. We’ve done bad things to become America. Arguably, we could not be America right now without them. Let’s fully own em, and then repent them. On the other hand, to be anti-racist as Leftist purists keep insisting is to be anti-human nature. It’s like asking people to will themselves into something other than just mere humans, maybe unicorns who live on rainbows. It’s not going to happen.

            I’m optimistic, however, that a soft revolution (one that doesn’t storm the Bastille, tear out all the institutions and chop off everyones’ heads) every now and then is good for the soul of the country. That could be the real American exceptionalism, the ability to constantly peacefully transform ourselves with each election and each peaceful change of power. Perhaps if that comes out of the National humiliation of the Trump debacle, that will be a good thing.

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          4. Very true.. all you say there. Yet there’s a part of me that prefers to acknowledge the expression of American democracy, as might be perceived around the world, is, in fact, not perfection but rather in the background within a changing culture that continues to strive for something greater. It’s more the idea that America is not on some altruistic cruise control of practicing city-on-the-hill gleaming democracy but rather chugging along at a pace that adapts to constant change.. in culture and in internal politics. Our coming to terms with our past improprieties and racial persecution has to be explored in a balance of the history of the day and less about a current lens of moral platitudes simply because at this point in time our culture needs to come to grips with a tainted past.
            We typically have a great heroic fondness for the Founding Fathers “giving” us the nation we relish today… yet they founded the country in a world where enslaving fellow human beings based on color was a norm. The Declaration and the subsequent Constitution were meant for ALL men.. yet they were not meant for black men. It was NORMAL in their day and age. Do we take umbridge for the racism of subsequent American generations who continued to victimize black Americans? Absolutely… because culture had/has shifted enough away from slavery-as-a-norm when slavery was abolished. Does that mean we just toss the keys of the country over to black Americans.. or even Native Americans… because today is cancel culture reparations time?
            Returning to American Exceptionalism… perhaps a redefining of what it has come to represent. We aren’t exceptional humans above all others… we are humans who represent a geographical location on the planet who have achieved a very exceptional form of democratic government that works for US… but as Churchill levied, is not perfect but it’s the best thing so far. Our form of government, way of life, has also allowed us to take world leadership to try and negotiate a basic stability in the world. This does not mean I like this “pushing of democracy” onto other countries. We need to stop that. We should encourage free expression.. that allows for personal choices.
            But I agree in what you say.. the future is an unknown and it’s like we have a point in time where we can… moderate and/or modify… our national image.

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          5. Doug,

            A while back ago I watched an interview with Benjamin Berell Ferencz. Ferencz is 100 now.

            Ferencz was born in Europe in 1920, and his family emigrated to NYC when he was 10 months old to escape persecution of Jews by Romanians after WWI. Ferencz ended up becoming a Harvard trained attorney and then enlisted in the Army in 1943. He ended up helping to liberate Jewish concentration camps. Immediately after he was discharged, Ferencz was tapped to be the Chiefs Investigator and Prosecutor for the Nuremberg Trials.

            At one point, the interviewer (I think it was Lesley Stahl) asked Ferencz how the men that he convicted could have been so evil, and Ferencz insisted that they were no more or less evil than all other people. Ferencz told her that we are all capable of similar evil. Essentially, Ferencz said that we all have the ability to normalizing the greatest of evils.

            In a 2005 Washington Post interview Ferencz said this:

            “Someone who was not there could never really grasp how unreal the situation was … I once saw DPs [displaced persons] beat an SS man and then strapped him to the steel gurney of a crematorium. They slid him in the oven, turned on the heat and took him back out. Beat him again, and put him back in until he was burnt alive. I did nothing to stop it. I suppose I could have brandished my weapon or shot in the air, but I was not inclined to do so. Does that make me an accomplice to murder? You know how I got witness statements? I’d go into a village where, say, an American pilot had parachuted and been beaten to death and line everyone one up against the wall. Then I’d say, ‘Anyone who lies will be shot on the spot.’ It never occurred to me that statements taken under duress would be invalid.”

            And yet Ferencz prosecuted some 22 Germans for war crimes and four of those were put to death. The German defendants were often undone by their own meticulous record keeping.

            What you wrote about the founding fathers was very well said. These incredible men did amazing things for the history of our country and the history of democracy in the world. Slavery was legal in the South during that time in our history and in that sense at least it was indeed subjectively “normal” by the standards of that time and place in history, but it was never objectively moral, and they all knew it in their hearts.

            In life, Washington pursued his runaway slaves relentlessly. He passed the Fugitive Slave Act of 1793 to assist him in hunting down his runaway property. Although Washington famously freed his slaves in his will (a good sign that he knew it was wrong), it was not to be until after his wife’s death. Fearing for her own life, she abused those slaves and separated them from their families.

            It was well know even at the time that Jefferson pretty much kept Sally Hemings as a slave concubine and he fathered several children by her. Without any actual ability to consent, nowadays we call that rape, but such relationships were morally frowned upon even during Jefferson’s time.

            I get what you are saying about normalcy changing over time, but I do think that there is a universal morality that transcends time and place that we can be held accountable to, at least by each other in history.

            That said, I’m not proposing that we cancel our great Founders and Framers or that we burn the parts of the history books where it says that what America has done and has become is indeed exceptional.

            I’m just saying that we need to tell all that history, not the good or the bad . . . or else we risk learning nothing and endlessly repeating the normalizing of our worst evils.

            Like

          6. To touch on your point in your reply of what Ferencz witnessed during the camp liberation.. turning on the news this morning I see there were lootings in Chicago overnight. I am sure there will be all kinds of explanations, but essentially it will all boil down to the greatest contributor being the frustration inside the pandemic… the public fear and frustration as half-assed 50 different ways of dealing with it and folks staying at home, compulsory or our of fear. In the end we are all human and people are reacting the way humans have always reacted during such situations when we lash out because there is no other way.. no other direction by which we can place some level of a final outcome… nothing to point to a personal sacrifice leading to a final positive outcome. It’s the one reason all those people wanted to go to Sturgis for the cycle event. If leaders and scientists had said in unison.. “we can whip this virus if we focus on these specific courses of action for just one year and hold off our events” I am sure most would be willing to skip a year… knowing some normalcy would return after. But people gathered because of the frustration of not knowing the future.

            To the point of what you said about there being a transcending universal morality, I am reminded of Maslow.. his hierarchy of needs pyramid, if you recall. As our culture develops we reach milestones from which certain collective needs are met.. food, shelter, reproduction, etc. and then the more higher “intellectual” milestones reach a priority.. like self-actualization, etc. You can’t expect a Third World country today having a citizenry who favors sending medical aid to some location in the world that has just suffered a climate disaster or earthquake. Certainly the limitations of their economy is a factor.. but people in Third world countries are more concerned with their own personal survival needs, and would be less benevolent in sending their own valuable resources elsewhere. Here in the U.S. it’s a whole different story. We’ve created a “fat cat” country and so we can afford to be benevolent.. to make us feel better, feel less guilt about being “fat cat”, and having reached a “Maslow level” where our priorities go beyond our own physical needs and enter into perceptions of moral obligation.

            You mentioned that “in their hearts they felt they were wrong”. I’m not so sure how universal that feeling might have been. This wasn’t “enslavement of fellow humans” to them.. there was some real perceptions, incorrect as they are interpreted now, where science of the day contributed to the ignorance that black slaves were in fact an inferior “race” of humans… that needed to be coddled because they couldn’t take care of themselves. Even abolitionists of the day thought enslavement of a “sub-species” of humans for economic exploitation was wrong yet still a creature of God… but certainly did not presume to think slaves were equal to whites.

            I suppose I am just contributing to the idea that as history and time passes, we tend to lose sight of the actual feelings of the day. But, yes…. without question…. history as a subject in education needs considerable revision, and perhaps a bit more emphasis than simply a “required course for graduation” to get out of the way.

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          7. Well, heck.. let’s do body count then since Conservatives constantly like to reference Benghazi to villainize Hillary. That was four lives… very indirectly. How many is Trump up to these days, directly or indirectly… thousands perhaps? Those were Americans too.

            You’re placing the blame for deaths from a disease on a president?
            Well, certainly more people died of disease before the invention of antibiotics.
            But far more died before the advent of hand washing and aseptic technique.
            Kind of curious where that bunny trail would end.

            Liked by 1 person

          8. Of course I can blame a president for complicity in American deaths due to a complete inability to act decisively on a pandemic national emergency because of self-serving politics and nothing else. That earlier ridiculousness that Trump is great from now until the end of time (and thus deserves a space on Mt. Rushmore) because he acted quickly to restrict “SOME” people from coming from China is way overblown when compared to his followup inaction on a national unified response.
            To my original comparison with Hillary… we’d likely be in a far better place right now… although you or anyone else would ever admit to it.

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          9. Getting lost in quotes now…
            Have no idea where that post is I just responded to but it doesn’t look like I chose the right thread. Ah well.

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        2. Look at how public schools always comes up in every debate here. The thought is that, if by design or a pandemic inspired implosion if its own making, public schools will suddenly be destroyed and the masses will demand home schooling or religious schools to be built on the ashes. Personally, I think it foolish to believe that families where both parents are working sometimes multiple jobs just to get by are going to suddenly demand homeschooling or expensive private schools once their usual public babysitters are gone.

          Yet this is exactly the world the Democrats are creating when they refuse to reopen schools after months and months. I’m not going to argue there are a lot of parents who need the schools to open. The Democrats won’t let that happen. So they are de facto home schooling anyway…until who knows when. It’s simply a foregone conclusion they will have to adapt. How is this not obvious?

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Conservatives: “We need to reopen schools, this is hurting families and our economy because the parents can’t go to work”

            Liberals: “You want people to die! No, we aren’t reopening schools”

            Conservatives: “Well, I guess on the bright side people are going to have to adapt and realize homeschooling might work better”

            Liberals: “Oh, you want to hurt families and our economy!”

            Insanity.

            Liked by 1 person

          2. Liz,

            Do you often have these very detailed conversations with imaginary straw liberals?

            To be honest, I have no idea if A given school at A given grade level in A given community in A given state should reopen or how that should happen. For anyone, myself included (my youngest is 39), to assert that, despite what local parents, teachers, health experts and leaders think, ALL schools NATIONWIDE must not reopen seems about as asinine to me as saying that they ALL should reopen (but that is the ass we have leading us). Why would it even be a matter of national party political ideology? I think if you answer that question honestly, you will see that the underlying ideological problem has less to do with the COVID crisis and more to do with wanting a reason to criticize public schools regardless of what they do or don’t do or how. You just don’t like them period, do you?

            Other than that, I don’t have, nor am I even qualified to have any opinion on the issue.

            Liked by 1 person

          3. @tsalmon

            Doesn’t stop you. In particular, it doesn’t stop you from berating “Trumpism”. Whatever that is, it seems you are an instant expert.

            Like

          4. @Liz
            @tsalmon
            @Doug

            Liz, consider. Tsalmon thinks the New York Times has conservative columnist. Doug thinks he is a Republican.

            Both think Trump is a monster, but they cannot point to anything specific to justify such a belief. And you wonder why they miss the obvious? They don’t want to see. When we close our eyes, we are blind.

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          5. Tom.. I have pointed specifically my own reasons I want that clown outta office many times… as recent as a day ago. He’s a mental case… diagnosed without question (if you haven’t been able to see the obvious for the last few years) by professionals.. included his own niece. But just take one item… why does he lie so much and why must every moment he yaks from behind a microphone require fact checking? More to the point.. given your high religious affirmation, how can you justify that lying behavior alone, much less the name-calling and bullying?

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          6. @Doug

            I try not to make generalized accusations of personal imperfection. You accuse Trump of being some kind of monster, and you cannot point to specific deeds. Then you make it my job to defend him? From what?

            All I have ever said is that Trump was a better H. Clinton and he has done a better job than I expected. I don’t have to prove anything except that Trump is a better choice than Biden. The fact you and tsalmon have nothing good to say about Biden speaks volumes. I have an easy job.

            Liked by 1 person

          7. Well, heck.. let’s do body count then since Conservatives constantly like to reference Benghazi to villainize Hillary. That was four lives… very indirectly. How many is Trump up to these days, directly or indirectly… thousands perhaps? Those were Americans too.

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          8. @Doug

            Absurd. Still going with the big monster nonsense.

            Think about you just did. You just mentioned a specific charge against H. Clinton, but you cannot explain how Trump killed anyone.

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          9. Well, of course I can! Didn’t he off a few Russians and maybe some collateral damage Syrians when he did that Syrian cruise missile attack? Or how about that drone attack on the Iranian terror leader in the car in Iraq? Of course.. those were “good” kills.. necessary and responsible “kills”… since those people are sorta/kinda quasi-enemies of the U.S. After the Iranian general was killed did not Iran respond with a Scud attack on one of our bases that scrambled the brains of any number of our soldiers who were ill-prepared to withstand such an attack? Then there’s the hundreds if not thousands he indirectly is complicit in killing from his inaction.. oops, sorry.. I meant, incompetent inaction in handling the pandemic… and continuing to botch up any coherent response and making this thing last longer and kill more people.
            Need I go further?

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          10. I guess you missed reading about a fair number of these “former” injuries can likely pop up later.. sorta like Agent Orange.. sneaks back up on you later in life. Point being… their brains were messed up from concussions… 34 of them at the outset. Doesn’t change the facts one bit regarding Trump’s decision.

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          11. @Doug

            The guy Trump had killed masterminded the KILLING of Americans, especially American soldiers in Iraq. You want to find an excuse to complain Trump did something about it? Well, the Democrats gave the Iranian regime billions to buy tickets and IEDs. That’s not a preferable alternative, and that is what elections are about.

            Liked by 1 person

          12. Doug, though facts seem to scare you and you only want to talk about how Trump secretly feels. If you’re going to site military death statistics and pretend context is an irrelevancy (or does context only matter when you “feel” it should?), you should be aware it doesn’t help your case.

            Click to access IF10899.pdf

            Liked by 1 person

          13. Tom,

            What sort of purity test do you propose giving to your fellow Republicans? The tough thing about such ideological purity tests is that eventually no one can pass them. 😏

            By any objective measure of historical Republican principles, Trump is neither a conservative nor a Republican, is he? That pretty much dumbs down actual party membership, not to any set of objective standards such as those that Doug listed, but instead simply to blind cult like loyalty to one person’s whims – in this case the mercurial whims of one Donald J. Trump.

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          14. @tsalmon

            Purity test? Here is a reply I wrote for Doug you may as well read.
            https://citizentom.com/2020/08/07/can-we-trust-the-coronavirus-covid-19-statistics-part-3/comment-page-1/#comment-95315

            I have a philosophy of life. I vote for the candidates whose values best line up with my own. Why would I want to apologize for that? You don’t like my values? You voting for people I agree with is a purity test? So what?

            I have two three problems with the candidates you support:
            1. They are Socialists. They want to impose their values on everyone else.
            2. I find their social values despicable.
            3. Whenever they keep a promise, I wish they had not done so.

            So, I vote for the candidates I prefer.

            Liked by 1 person

          15. Why would it even be a matter of national party political ideology? I think if you answer that question honestly, you will see that the underlying ideological problem has less to do with the COVID crisis and more to do with wanting a reason to criticize public schools regardless of what they do or don’t do or how.

            Citizen Tom (link above) cited the CDC and AAP (American association of pediatrics) as a source.
            Why would it be a matter of national party political ideology?
            Gee…because it’s REALLY important? There isn’t much that takes precedence over the knowledge that is shaping our children.

            You just don’t like them period, do you?

            Our boys have gone to public schools 11 out of their 12 years. I’ve quit a great job to relocate for our kids educations. My spouse has turned down assignments to relocate, to avoid our kids going to terrible schools. We moved to this location after scouting out all the schools in the area and coming to the conclusion this one was the best fit for our kids. We’ve done hour and a half commutes so we could live in the communities with the better schools. Now the schools are forcing the homeschooling option and I think (as I’ve mentioned) a good portion of people who never seriously considered this option will. And that is a very good thing. Do you know folks who homeschool? The results within the military community are very good, in my experience.

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          16. I’ll say more.
            One thing the last assignment illuminated was the cost of government buildings. It’s incredibly high. I was raised in Florida and remember when the lottery system was supposed to solve the public school financing problem. A huge supply of millions and millions! Well…that all became part of the “standard” budget, and rather than using it as a surplus, when lotto ticket sales weren’t as high they called that a budget shortage. They were building new schools in swamps…”hey, just have to spend a ton of money to level off the land and it’s all good…” Huge new buildings everywhere, and then the housing crisis came. Along with every new building there’s the obligatory busing, maintenance, et al.
            Homeschooling makes all of that unnecessary. If a good portion of people choose it, and I think they will after having it forced on them, the actual cost to taxpayers should go far down.

            Liked by 1 person

          17. Liz,

            Why does it all have to be all-or-nothing all the time with you? Where did I say that I am either for or against homeschooling? Yes, I’ve know lots of people, some very good friends? who have done it.

            Why can’t we all recognize a general national need to reopen schools for the obvious health and well being of children and families while also realizing that local parents, teachers, health authorities, and state and local officials may be in a better position to assess the COVID risks and benefits in their communities than some fool in the White House who throws out some arbitrary (and unenforceable) mandate for purely political purposes? And who says that, even within any given locality and state everyone will ever always agree with what the officialdom (be “they” Democrat or Republican) decides? Who the Hell are “they” anyway?

            So you made choices for your family? Good for you! Here’s you medal and degree in honorary education policy. Whoopie! 😊

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          18. So you made choices for your family? Good for you! Here’s you medal and degree in honorary education policy. Whoopie!

            Yeah, woopie. You just accused me of hating public schools so I answered.

            Liked by 1 person

          19. So your constant criticism of public schools and pushing to substitute home schooling in its place is just your version of tough love? My apologies then. As Stephen King once wrote, “Kill your darlings, kill your darlings”. 🤓

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          20. So your constant criticism of public schools and pushing to substitute home schooling in its place is just your version of tough love?

            And here you are accusing me of straw man all or nothing arguments.

            Liked by 1 person

          21. How is that a response to anything that I wrote? That’s just a word salad with some of your favorite bugaboos thrown in as croutons.

            1. At some point, if EVERYONE that I vote for is supposedly a Socialist, then nobody really is a Socialist. You make the word so smurfy that it loses any distinctive meaning. It’s about as defining or even insulting as accusing me of having white hair. But I will provide my usual comeback: I bet I’ve got more education paid for with my own money from more private colleges and universities than you have, and I bet I’ve had more jobs in the independent marketplace than you have. You Socialist you!😏

            2. Given who I have voted for (which has include a lot of Republicans over the years), you are basically saying that you don’t like more than half of American’s “social values”, then aren’t you? But first of all, how very superior must it make one feel to wallow in such high minded moralism? Second of all, you support a thrice married, thrice adulterous, numerous times bankrupt casino owner, meat market contest runner, constant prevaricator, gossip mongering, narcissist whose only success in life was running a reality TV show where he belittled and mocked his contestants for money, but you want to set yourself up as having morally supperior political social values? Sure, let’s have that debate all day long please?

            3. This one is rather ambiguous, but with Trump, you don’t have to worry – he lies so much that you can’t tell which promises are kept and which are broken. It all just looks like an orange explosion of chaos.

            Now, please explain to me how Trump, your fearful leader with no clothing, is or has ever been a traditional conservative or a Republican? I bet if you look in the dictionary for those words, it actually says, “Not Donald Trump, no way!” 😂

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          22. Agreed. Trump is not a Republican.. never has been. I’d call him a Conservative Nationalist.. or even a Nationalist Conservative… and since he’s become President I’d add to that “fascist-wannabe” given his blossoming authoritarianism… and self-professed “savior”.

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          23. @tsalmon

            1. We are talking about this election, not 20 years ago. If you are voting for Biden, you are voting for a Socialist again.

            2. You voted for Obama, H. Clinton, and you plan to vote for Biden. I find their values despicable. Socialism. Identity politics. Abortion. Using envy to pit people against each other. Secularism. The politics of personal destruction…..

            3. Trump has undone most of the “acaccomplishments” of the Obama administration. That is unambiguous and one of the main causes of TDS.

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          24. To my original comparison with Hillary… we’d likely be in a far better place right now… although you or anyone else would ever admit to it.

            I only know one thing Hillary did that had anything to do with healthcare, and it was a disaster. Such a disaster you won’t see her own up to it. Took about a decade or more to sort out the abortion that was Tricare (used as an experiment when she was in charge of the HMO based “national healthcare task force” experiment)

            Could you name some specifics as to where you think Trump did something wrong? Actual things, not feelings about what he felt.

            Liked by 1 person

          25. You mean like actual agenda things, or lies-this-week things, or bullying-name calling-unpresidential-behavioral things, or demeaning governmental institutions things, or the “disruptor” role he plays to the delight of his swamp-draining supporters things, or his failure to unite the country things, or his promoting distrust in our voting system things? You sound like Tom. “Give me a specific so I can make an excuse for him.”
            I’ve told you and others… his agenda matters not as there is nothing he has done to offset the person.. the President, he has been… nor the damage he has done to this country. And honestly.. I believe in the Mueller Report and that it has established sufficient doubt to certain illegal activities in which Trump has played a role… which falls in line with his persona of “I can do anything.” The failed impeachment process had nothing to do with disproving any Mueller allegations.

            If you want to toy with specifics then you’ve been asleep the last 3 years.

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          26. Tom,

            Like I said, your use of the word “Socialism” is a catch all for everything government does or does not do that you simply don’t like and the word, of course, does not apply to similar governmental activities that you do like. It’s so vague and smurfy a term as to be just a meaningless tribal designation. Everyone is a Socialist at some point, even Trump.

            In this case, however, it’s just a distraction so that you don’t have to address the real problem. Trump is NOT a conservative or a Republican by any understanding of those terms that we have had in our lifetimes. And yet you praise him and make up wild excuses for him and are lead around by the nose by him.

            And yet labels are sooo important to you. So, if you are no longer “Conservative Republicans”, what do you and others here call yourselves now? (“Know Nothings” seems appropriate, but rather antiquated). I’m not even sure how to describe what Trumpism is: snake oil sales, economics by wizardry, Great Wall of China American foreign policy, Santa Claus money policy . . . .

            Everything that Trump does would have been anathema to the ideological tenants of conservatives and Republicanism going back to the turn of the 20th Century. This is why Trump’s strongest critics, like Doug, are lifelong Republicans. And yet you Trumpublicans follow your dear leader around like puppy dogs lapping up his latest racist outrage or nonsensical con like it’s the very best kibble.

            You can distract with school yard taunts of “Socialist” all you want, but Trump is not a Republican and he is not a conservative, and you know it. And since you follow him, neither are you.

            The fact is Biden is more of a conservative and a traditional Republican than Trump is, or at least Biden has a lifelong record of being able to work with and compromise toward the best of Republican ideals (the ones that I used to vote for). By comparison, Trump is just a wrecking ball, devoid of any ideals or ideology, except just being an orange clown promoting himself and his fabulous, fantastic, best ever, White House Carnival Show.

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          27. @tsalmon

            You are not dealing with facts. You are just making vague complaints about my choice of words.

            Calling Biden a Conservative, with Bernie Sanders backing him, is just nonsense. Biden is compromised. Putting that rascal, apparently a rascal who is growing rapidly more demented, wouldn’t be a disaster. When there is good reason to believe they have already bought his support once, we cannot rely upon him to defend our interests from the Chinese.

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          28. The fact is Biden is more of a conservative and a traditional Republican than Trump is, or at least Biden has a lifelong record of being able to work with and compromise toward the best of Republican ideals (the ones that I used to vote for).

            Biden is the status quo personified.
            Trump is anti-status quo.
            So I will agree that in the traditional sense Trump isn’t really Conservative.
            If this were 10 years ago, that Biden wouldn’t bother me much.
            As I mentioned, I’m most concerned about current activity. I’m far from alone, the DNC seems to worry about it too which is why we don’t see him speak in public much.

            Liked by 1 person

          29. We’ve been watching Parks and Recreation and it reminded me I kind of liked Biden then. Also reminded of a time when folks could disagree about politics and still get along.

            Liked by 1 person

          30. “We’ve been watching Parks and Recreation and it reminded me I kind of liked Biden then. Also reminded of a time when folks could disagree about politics and still get along.“

            We get along don’t we? I’d cut off my left arm for my brother if he needed it, I think IB is some kind of Christian mystic, Rudy is a sage, and I don’t drink any more, but for you Liz, I make an exception just to have a beer or two with you.

            Trump is ok as long as he sticks with short words and sentences (but forget about whole paragraphs). The whole Biden mental capacity thing is just another case of Trump projecting his own demons upon his adversaries. I don’t think that dog’s gonna hunt, but good luck trying. Not interested.

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          31. You know, Tom can be happy with your arm as I’d prefer keeping mine to myself given we don’t share any bloodline (or politics). IB is also a political mystic. Rudy.. yes.. the sage. Oddly.. I’d share a beer with Liz as well, and only because she is a loyal Trumpian beyond common sense.. but given I don’t drink beer she can have my entire can/bottle and I’ll suck down a Trumpian diet Coke (my only commonality with the guy besides gender, albeit I’ll take his word on that.. maybe foolishly so). Tony, I’d share a trench with you… but only if you sit between me and your brother… at least 6 feet.

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          32. @Doug

            Traditionally, we don’t attack people in America. We attack what we think are foolish and/or evil beliefs.

            When we behave as our traditions suggest, we adhere to the practice commanded in this quote.

            Be egalitarian regarding persons. Be elitist regarding ideas. — Peter Kreeft of Boston College

            This idea is Christian in origin. How so? Christians understand we cannot bring anyone to Christ we have killed.

            Whenever we find ourselves ruthlessly attacking a person instead of specific things they have said or done, we have failed to treat that person as another human being made in the image of our Lord.

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          33. TSalmonWe get along don’t we?

            Heh, I suppose so. 😀
            Candidly, I don’t think I could speak to my own family about politics.
            My bro and sister in law are rabid anti-Trumpers, and under the impression we agree (because we don’t talk politics, they just go on an on).
            My mom and mother in law are the other side of the camp (my spouse’s mom sends continuous pro-Trump spam, and my mom rants for about a half hour…I am very grateful she can’t text or peruse the internet).

            Liked by 1 person

          34. Well, wait now, Liz… this brings to me a question or two for you. You’ve just indicated that your bro and sis-in-law are anti-Trumpers. You certainly know Tony and myself are as well. So… what makes us different from the other? Sure, we might all agree Trump must go… but do you see notable differences.. some common or uncommon reasons that might suggest anything but a singular reason for wanting him out?
            I am guessing you will see some variants as to our individual reasons… but does it matter or not in the long run if we are unified to see his removal?
            We could also go the other way as well. Between you, your mom, mother-in-law, and even Tom here… are there differences in why you support him?

            Like

          35. “Biden won’t debate Trump. Watch.”

            Actually, the Biden campaign has already agreed to the debate schedule. Trump is the one balking. Seems like Trump’s a scaredy-cat. What a loser! 🥺

            Like

          36. Well, wait now, Liz… this brings to me a question or two for you. You’ve just indicated that your bro and sis-in-law are anti-Trumpers. You certainly know Tony and myself are as well. So… what makes us different from the other? Sure, we might all agree Trump must go… but do you see notable differences.. some common or uncommon reasons that might suggest anything but a singular reason for wanting him out?

            I’m not sure your reasons are any different. Again, I don’t debate politics with them and they are under the impression we agree. my brother has ranted about the PPE situation (lack of medical kit), but he doesn’t seem to have put together the fact this was a situation created by dependence on China. He just blames Trump. On the other hand, he praised Cuomo’s leadership…but at the time we spoke New York held the vast majority of covid cases in the country. He rants about Trump’s racism but (much like folks here) hasn’t offered a real example…but we haven’t pressed or asked for one because, again, we don’t talk politics. (Ostensible) racism seemed to be the main reason before covid. He brought that up a lot. Maybe because they thought this would be especially meaningful to us. I should mention this is my side of the family, not his side.
            -From our perspective, as I’ve mentioned, we don’t see it.
            I do think the media is being very irresponsible with the race peddling. Read somewhere recently in a polls in Germany and India they think the US is a terribly racist country…which is really laughable, especially with India’s caste system. But it is what the media currently promotes (and I’ve posted about that too, with statistical examples starting a few years before Trump came to office).
            -From my perspective, I find it hard to understand the reasoning behind the “trust” angle (which seems to be the main concern you and TSalmon are currently citing).

            Not that I don’t understand why trust is important…of course I do. I just don’t understand how you can compare career politicians who have accumulated vast sums of wealth via their positions in government and say those are the people you can trust.

            Liked by 1 person

          37. Liz,

            It is the unique period of extreme incompetence of the Trump administration’s handling of this crisis that you must dig down to the Chad leadership to find adequate comparators. Why not just look at our closest allies in Europe and Asia, you know the ones who used to look to America for inspiration and leadership before they began laughing at us because our orange clown turned our country into a realty TV show and now look down at us with sadness and pity. “Make America Not A Sad Loser Again”!

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          38. It is the unique period of extreme incompetence of the Trump administration’s handling of this crisis that you must dig down to the Chad leadership to find adequate comparators. Why not just look at our closest allies in Europe and Asia

            Most of Europe and Asia pale compared to the fine examples of Chad and the Western Sahara which have been barely touched by covid. If this truly comes down to leadership (and not things like…say, demographics and comorbidities, et al), that great leader of Chad (whoever he is) is your man!

            FWIW, mortality rates for the US were 1⁄3 that of most of Europe (and dropping due to new treatments) also had greatly expanded testing ( ~ 600k a day).

            Liked by 1 person

          39. Liz,

            I think you may be right about deaths per number of cases going down because of better treatment. I’d just as well do what much of Europe and Asia have done and avoid contracting the disease in the first place so that I don’t have to spend a month in a specialized ICU bed getting turned occasionally so that my organs don’t fail, and then quite probably suffering from the lasting effects for the rest of my shorter life span.

            Bravo for Trump! By his dreadful incompetence, he has increased the numbers of sickened and dead compared to other countries, but all that added practice on record numbers of sick and dying has made our health care workers more capable.

            You can’t spin this thing as anything but a massive failure Liz. I’ve got to admit that the argument that we have become much better at practicing to bleed is extraordinary in its desperation though.

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          40. It’s an “extraordinarily desperate argument” that mortality rates for the US are 1⁄3 that of most of Europe. I suppose it is also an extraordinarily desperate argument that hospitalizations are down.

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          41. Liz,

            Yes, the Trump plan: We must practice bleeding until we do bleeding better than everyone else.

            Trump was right. I sure am tired of his kind of winning. 😓

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          42. TSalmon, what do you imagine the situation to be where everyone is kept healthy and the economy remains running and strong in this situation?
            I ask because you’re blaming leadership for both.
            Which makes your argument not only “desperate” but also nonsensical as well as uninformed.

            Liked by 1 person

          43. As I said, Europe and Asia are starting to get spikes now that they are reopening.
            The draconian measures of some countries just wouldn’t work here (unless folks were actively actually dying in droves in the streets…but not only is that not happening, few people even seem to know anyone who was struck badly by this virus, so good luck making everyone get a note of permission from the authorities if they want to go to the grocery store, or pay a several thousand dollar fine. I might add, the people screaming for such measures are also actively praising protestors congregating in droves. Madness.

            Liked by 1 person

          44. @Liz

            Hypocrisy is admired as a “virtue” in some circles. Such complain about others striving for high standards that they only pretend to have. Hence, for example, we have racists loudly denouncing racism when in fact they adore racism. The George Floyd rioters promoted racism far more than they discouraged racism. Without any proof, those protesters assumed the policemen who supposedly killed Floyd were racists because they were policemen and not black.

            Somehow the rioters even managed to convince themselves that Trump was responsible even though the city and state is managed by Democrats. Madness indeed!

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          45. Oh, and the very authorities that should ostensibly be entrusted to demand “I can go outside” notes from everyone with the temerity to go to the store (or park or anywhere…since we’re praising the actions of other countries now but you don’t offer any specifics of which countries or what actions) are called “storm troopers”. Trump is a dictator with storm troopers, but we want those storm troopers to be a the mask guards and police our every move. Now, everyone (include the folks demanding this and screaming about incompetence because it isn’t happening) would scream if this actually happened. It would lead to vast social unrest and a much worse economy (you might notice the stock market is back, knock on wood). Every argument seems to come down to the orange man bad all the time channel.

            Liked by 1 person

          46. Now you’re getting the idea!! Orange man bad! Orange man in the way.

            I said months ago that closer to the election and realizing his standing in the polls he’s going to respond like a caged animal… and he will literally follow a scorched earth policy to the end.
            He’s been invalidating the election before it’s even happened… he’s rigged the post office to slow down…. threatening democracy…
            He’s dreaming up crazy and confusing decrees and proclamations thinking he has all the power to do so…
            He’s appointed some “yes man” scientist to the Covid task force… and Trump still minimizes the pandemic, leaving everyone to flounder further….

            I keep saying, embrace the horror cause he’s going to get worse.. and I am not talking just the pandemic, although……………………..

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          47. Your Tweet…..
            “This is the first presidential election in which voters won’t know if they actually voted, who REALLY is the Democratic candidate for President, when the votes might be counted, whether China or Russia interfered the most, or how accurate the count is. But otherwise, terrific.”

            1. “This is the first presidential election in which voters won’t know if they actually voted.”
            You mean, because Trump has sabotaged the Post Office.. forcing them to operate with delays with delivering mail-in ballots? It’s already been acknowledged that count delays will be inevitable on mail-in ballots anyway. Pandemic, remember? Absolutely no reason to doubt mail-in ballots would be subject to wide-spread fraud based on any evidence. Trump imagination that supports the less voters going to the polls the better for him.

            2. “…who REALLY is the Democratic candidate for President…”
            I have NO idea what this even means. Another Trump conspiracy theory? Is this some reference to promote a debate? You mean.. you need an actual debate to REALLY know who Joe Biden is after all these years in public office and serving as VP, and other debates along that way???

            3. “…when the votes might be counted…”
            As I said above.. seems a voting results delay would be apparent given the mail-in ballot counting. Something wrong with that? Is there a Constitutional violation somewhere? Did the Founding Fathers say how the votes should be counted?

            4. “…..whether China or Russia interfered the most….”
            Trump said that wasn’t true. The intel sources were all wrong, he said. Are “we” believing this now? If they interfered in the 2016 election, and that was a polling place election, then it seems, to the Chinese or the Russians, it matters not if we vote in a polling place or mail-in ballot. So, whether this happens or not is up to the government to keep track… not anything to do with mail-in balloting.

            5. “…or how accurate the count…”
            Seems that’s the question for each election given all the local mess ups in the past… and not just a possibility in an election with only mail-in balloting. There is no historical evidence that mail-in would not be accurate. Now… this statement “how accurate the count” is meant to cast doubt because of outright voter fraud. If this is going to be the first wide-spread use of mail-in balloting I am fully expecting log-jams in automated counting systems inside the 50 states… but any outright fraud thing should show up readily apparent by state.

            And you accuse the media of being alarmist??

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          48. @Doug

            Use your head. Democrats don’t want voter ID. They don’t clean up voter registration rolls. They want mail-in ballots send to every registered voter, and the postal service cannot even safely handle cash? Meanwhile, we tried mail-in voting during the primaries, and it has been a mess. Of course, given the news media you trust, what do you know?

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          49. Absolutely no reason to doubt mail-in ballots would be subject to wide-spread fraud based on any evidence. Trump imagination that supports the less voters going to the polls the better for him.

            I’ll just take this one.
            Mail in ballots are known to be subject to fraud.
            In fact, in 2008, 25 percent of military absentee ballots from overseas were lost.
            It was a matter of Congressional inquiry.
            https://crimeresearch.org/2020/08/original-research-why-do-most-countries-ban-mail-in-ballots-they-have-seen-massive-vote-fraud-problems/?fbclid=IwAR1E8eUWnqBqC6PkFywGwxMjq4Jwxs1LRPH83y9_3_yzSjRRA0D8Gw2e-28

            “Among the 27 countries in the European Union, 63% ban mail-in voting unless living abroad and another 22% require a photo-ID to obtain a mail-in ballot. Twenty-two percent ban the practice even for those who live abroad.

            There are sixteen countries in the rest of Europe, and they are even more restrictive. Every single one bans mail-in voting for those living in the country or require a photo-ID to obtain a mail-in ballot. Sixty-three percent don’t allow mail-in ballots even for citizens living outside of the country.”

            Like

          50. This is so open ended. Your link showed nothing of consequence other than a list of countries. We know nothing of how their ballots were designed, were they designed for automation tracking? We know nothing.. and you are using this as evidence of substance?
            I know nothing of 25% of military overseas balloting not getting counted in 08 of any other year. What was the conclusion of all that.. If, Congress did an investigation? Again.. open ended and incomplete “evidence”. We have NO idea if such delays could be replicated here, intentional or by omission.
            Wanna go back to 1972? I can verify with accuracy that my mail-in vote was received and counted. I have a photograph of me in uniform, on post in Iceland, completing a mail-in ballot… not computerized by any means. I made a little mark in the lower left of the ballot. My mother was a Republican election judge and she said she identified from my mark that she received my mail-in ballot at the polling place in the States. Now.. I admit, we lived in Chicago where the voting motto is “Vote wise, and vote often” (even the dead could cast their vote). But my vote got counted (likely until it didn’t).

            Like

          51. Your link showed nothing of consequence other than a list of countries. We know nothing of how their ballots were designed, were they designed for automation tracking? We know nothing.. and you are using this as evidence of substance?

            That page linked to a document 141 pages long. And you read that whole thing in this short amount of time and concluded there was no “evidence of substance” eh?
            You must really be a speed reader.

            Cool story about your vote counting. That must mean the 25 percent of lost votes that resulted in Congressional inquiry didn’t happen. I need to give you details? Why? You can google.

            Liked by 1 person

  4. You may be interested in what the situation is like in Germany.

    Schools are opening, of course with quite a few restrictions and safeguards put in place. The basic idea is to reduce contacts between students not from the same class, in order to reduce the risk of spreading an infection. So schools had to come up with individual plans: Change the timetables, such that different age groups / classes have breaks at different times, pupils need to wear masks outside of the classroom (in some states at all time), corridors are declared one-way, etc. When an infection is found, that school will need to shut down for a week or two and pupils will need to go into isolation with their families.

    All of the above happens while there is the normal, general monitoring in place. If an area has more than 50 new infections over a period of 7 days, then restaurants, bars and other mass gatherings are closed and people are asked to stay at home as much as possible (except for outside excercise/walking). Germany has about the same level of testing as the USA. At the moment, Germany has about 5-10 new infections per 100,000 inhabitants over a 7-day period. For comparison, for the US that number is 125; this needs to be kept in mind, when comparing measures taken in Germany and the US.

    I think this is a good compromise between keeping the infection count low and having children go to school. Both their education and their social contact needs have to be taken into account, not just the health risk from Covid-19 for them, their teachers and their families.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. @marmoewp

      There is such a thing as being too effective in suppressing the virus. What is important is keeping the vulnerable from getting it, not everyone. That said, I hope those interested in coming up with school reopening guidelines are looking at Germany. We obviously need to do whatever we can to help the students, their parents, the teachers feel sufficiently safe that they can get back to work.

      The biggest danger, I think, is that a student or teacher will bring the virus home to someone who is vulnerable.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. You should NEVER send your kids back to school because there is this entirely different virus that tends to infect them and the damage causes many of them to lose their critical thinking skills. 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. @insanitybytes22

      Kind of one of those damned if you do, and damned if you don’t choices.

      Any parent who can afford it should educate their own children, but as the situation stands the only place some children will learn to read is in the public schools. Unfortunately, some public schools are so awful they don’t even teach their charges to read.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. That’s one benefit to all this. I suspect homeschooling will continue for a good portion of families. Once they realize they don’t need to log in to their local schools, and programs outside of their localities offer more flexibility for their schedules as well as a better education.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. @Liz

          Democrats are taking a big risk. Obama revealed them as Socialists bordering on Communists. If the news media cannot make Socialism palatable — and they cannot steal the election — they risk losing power for decades.

          Liked by 1 person

      2. I realize that not everybody can homeschool and that life is seldom ideal, but cost should not be one of the obstacles. It can actually be more cost effective for a parent to stay home with kids, than trying to juggle work, daycare, transportation, taxes. I was fortunate, I worked part time and hubby was self employed. Then there are community groups, co-ops that can form, so a few neighborhood kids go to someone else’s house to study math or whatever. You kind of pass them around so they get some social exposure but also so homeschool parents get a break.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. @insanitybytes22

          I suspect the main tricks to homeschooling is teaching a child the art of self-study and working with other homeschool parents as you suggested. If a large enough group of parents is involved, then some of the parents will have the skills required to tutor children in certain difficult subjects such mathematics.

          Liked by 1 person

        2. A variant to that “community bubble” education thing moving about. Personally I think any educational adaptation/accommodation idea should serve in some way to keep school kids with some level of educational “inertia” for at least one school year… hopefully long enough for someone in government to actually LEAD us through this pandemic. But just pushing and forcing back-to-school as if the kids are going to fall behind a grade and the world will come to a crashing end.. is just alarmist. Kids adapt better than adults and can catch up inside of a summer if/when it becomes more safe to go back to school. The trick… where do graduated 8th graders go to high school in school systems without middle schools, when the high schools are closed.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Actually Doug, rather then falling behind, I’d say those kids are probably now twice as smart for having not been in school. 🙂
            However, there are some major economic concerns and getting the whole system up and rolling is really critical. Where I live we’ve already got a lot of families on life support, like literally the foodbank is delivering them food and they are either facing eviction or already living in a motorhome in someone’s driveway.

            Liked by 1 person

          2. @insanitybytes22

            Where I live in Northern Virginia, lots of people work for the government or government contractors. The government doesn’t lay people off. They just send them home with a paycheck. So, I doubt many people around here actually understand the damage that is being done. Hope I am wrong. The election will be revealing.

            Liked by 1 person

          3. Yeah.. same here. We are not in a happy place for sure. Not sure about the “up and running” thing for the economy. Even if everyone opens it all up.. a lot of folks are too fearful to go out anyway.

            Liked by 1 person

          4. @Doug

            Young adults, anyway. Probably would be better if they were in churches, colleges, swimming pools, theme parks, restaurants, at work, and all those things we have closed. Less destructive than mostly peaceful protests, don’t you think?

            Like

          5. I dunno what to think anymore. Just biding (or is it “Biden”?) my time and wading through events and holding my breath that Trump doesn’t do too much “scorched earth” damage before he leaves.

            Like

          6. I dunno what to think anymore. Just biding (or is it “Biden”?) my time and wading through events and holding my breath that Trump doesn’t do too much “scorched earth” damage before he leaves.

            When Trump announced the travel ban due to corona at the end of January, Pelosi responded with the No ban act the very next day. Biden called the travel restrictions “hysterical xenophobia” and “fear mongering”. They’ve tried to spin it ever since, but that is what happened.
            You’ve asserted that “Trump ignored his own experts”….well, a leader does have to make that call. He ignored the experts when he shut down travel and now everyone has attempted to rewrite history and asserted he was too late in the closure. Closing off travel was an act of leadership. Offering the states autonomy to run their own localities is also an act of leadership. It is stupid to have the same rules in Wyoming as a congested metropolitan area. Localities are in a better position to make that call. Micromanagement is not leadership.

            BTW, I looked up the NHS out of curiosity yesterday and it seems the UK stopped obligatory ubiquitous TB vaccinations for school children back in 2005 (per the British Medical Journal). I guess Trump got to them 15 years ago.

            Liked by 1 person

          7. BTW, if leadership means just doing whatever the experts determine (in this case they’re conflicting so I guess go with a vote), that doesn’t require a person, just punch it into AI and do what the panel says.

            Liked by 1 person

          8. Just to show I’m not partisan on the leadership issue (at least, not like you are Doug) Captain Brett Crozier showed leadership in a similar fashion when he protected his subordinates. He too ignored “the experts”. But the liberals agreed with him so he’s okay. That’s water under the bridge but a good example of how folks on both sides are just talking past each other (and you are worse than average Doug).

            Liked by 1 person

          9. @Liz
            The NO BAN Act (H.R. 2214) was introduced October 4th, 2019, in response to Trump’s EOs #13769 “Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States” in 2017 and #13780. That EO “banned” entries from Syria, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan and Yemen. On January 31, 2020, Trump did extend that list to include Eritrea, Kyrgyzstan, Myanmar (Burma), Nigeria, and Tanzania. These bans were indeed critizised as racist and xenophobic. However, the Executive Order’s bans were based on the threat of terrorism, not Covid-19. The latter threat was addressed in different EO entirely on the same day, so I guess that coincidence in date lead to bit of confusion.

            I am not aware, that the January 31st, 2020 EO “Proclamation on Suspension of Entry as Immigrants and Nonimmigrants of Persons who Pose a Risk of Transmitting 2019 Novel Coronavirus”, which included the travel ban on China, was denigrated as racist or xenophobic, so I would be interested of getting evidence of such denigration from members of Congress or Senate. I think to remember there was criticism along the lines “too little, too late” and “the horse has left the barn already”, as there was evidence of community transmission of Covid-19 in Washington state at the end of January, already.

            Like

  6. It’s totally safe to send kids back to school! That is, until it’s YOUR kid that gets the virus and gets sick and/or dies… or brings it home and gets someone else sick and/or they die. But if anyone dies that’s simply collateral damage; too bad, so sad. Those numbers will be small. America must go on! MAGA!

    In your grand summation of “facts” you failed to consider one aspect… kids, especially the younger ages, are very difficult to contain and monitor and their safety is entirely dependent on visually attentive educators.. the ones you constantly lament who have no idea how your kids should be taught. Based on that photo that one student took in the crowded hallway of her high school in between class… no masks, no distancing… yep, that’s working! You’re correct, of course… no sense listening to the precautions… the actual science… of the President’s own task force or other institution professionals… and believe entirely on obtuse and obscure crazy link sources who feature alt-science to fit any political agenda.

    Like

    1. @Doug

      Well, you did read Tricia’s post.

      Consider. If H. Clinton were president, would the world be safe from COVID-19, or the mass media less hysterical?

      I have always been amazed by the Liberal Democrat definition of “safe sex”. Got HIV/AIDS? Use a condum, that invincible good luck charm. How does a condum work with COVID-19? Do you think we should put one over the head of each first grader?

      Would you mind explaining your criteria for “safe”?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. We exercise our vote in this country in order to select leaders who, in turn, we expect will lead us properly. Much of that “assuming” is simply a variant of faith.. which I know full well you understand. Now.. when we have faith in our political leaders part of our faith in them is that they have our utmost well-being and safety at heart to do that part of the job we expect them to do.
        But Conservatives spend an awful amount of time doubting leaders in general.. even if they voted for them. They doubt their abilities to lead by simply denying what they proclaim or act. Trump selects a Covid team… and denies what they say. Trump has the command of all the health institutions inside government.. and he still denies what they say. No.. he just doesn’t deny.. he vilifies the scientists themselves. He politicizes… hence his supporters politicize. Mask wearing is political because it represents freedom… universal health practices to try and control Covid be damned. In fact.. wearing a mask is a direct line to wanting to make Trump look bad.

        “Safe”, seems to me, is an “earned” place we try to reach when/if we can control the virus. “Safe” is not massaging stats and numbers to determine acceptable losses.. it’s a goal for everyone. This entire response was a sloppy mess from the get-go and had the first shutdown had any semblance of a strategic plan we might have been much closer to “safe” than we are now. Sorry, Tom. You don’t create “safe” out of thin air at the expense of some. You achieve it for all.

        Like

        1. @Doug

          When Conservatives win an election, Liberal Democrats deny the results. Consider. The mass media and the Democrats have been pushing Russian collusion or some such nonsense ever since Trump won the Republican Party’s nomination. Therefore, your rant against Trump doesn’t make sense.

          How do we create a “safe” choice? Can we achieve a “safe” choice for all? No. There is no such thing as a perfectly “safe” choice. We cannot make our schools perfectly safe. They never have been perfectly safe. As the parent of any child who has been bullied, caught the flu, hurt in physical education, misinformed in sex ed, taught damnable “isms” because some fool politician insisted upon it, and so forth can tell you, try as we might we cannot make our schools perfectly safe. They are run by fallible people, not angels.

          Think again about the basic issue. You don’t like my definition of safety, and I think your definition of safety a purely political obfuscation. What is the obvious way to resolve our differences? We each make our own choices. That is the essence of liberty and freedom.

          So, why do we have government-run public schools that give all our choices to elected officials and bureaucrats? Well, the notion that the public schools exist solely because of public generosity is woefully naïve. It is a fact of history that Protestants wanted to destroy the Catholic schools. Look up the Blaine Amendments. It is also a fact of the present that the teachers unions whole heartedly back the Democratic Party and push the Liberal Democrat agenda through the indoctrination of school children.

          The public schools exist because politicians seek power. When politicians spend our money for us or make our choices for us, they can buy something for themselves. Therefore, some politicians will always make the argument that the “other guy” has no right to make his own choices.

          Therefore, you can speak grandly of the safety of all, but not everyone will agree that what you want is “safe”. You can say it is wrong to reopen the public schools, that we have no right to “force” public school teachers back into the company of our children and grandchildren until we achieve some ill-defined perfection of safety. But you cannot provide a definition of safety that will satisfy everyone.

          Meanwhile, private school teachers seem less inclined to complain, but those poor, abused souls are just choosing for themselves. How dreadful! They are losing out on the opportunity to be bossed about by the glorious leaders in which you have put your faith.

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Then why vote at all, Tom? Conservatives and ultra-Right Wing complain constantly of the abuses of government and when it comes down to having faith or some level of trust in leaders.. that’s the last thing they are concerned about. So.. if all government is bad all of the time then why bother at all? Perhaps these mysterious “anarchists” who seem to show up on the scene during all of American history ONLY during times of civil discord in the streets, have the better idea after all.

            Like

          2. @Doug

            Good question! Why have a government? The reason is given in the Declaration of Independence. We need a government to protect our God-given rights.

            Does government have a role in protecting us from disease, building roads, providing for public education, caring for the poor, and numerous other things? Yes, but all those other things don’t matter if the government does not do its primary job, keeping us from abusing each others rights.

            Like

        2. You don’t create “safe” out of thin air at the expense of some. You achieve it for all.

          Safe for everyone isn’t really a thing. It never has been. All legislation is a cost to gains equation…including vaccines (which aren’t safe for everyone either).

          Liked by 1 person

          1. Then I refer you to the reply I just made to Tom.

            Like everything else, “safe” is relative to everyone… although a certain amount of safe relies on trust that something is in place to assure a basic level of safe.

            Like

          2. @Liz
            @Doug

            Quite a few people have to be pressured to take vaccines. I was in the military when President Gerald Ford ordered military personnel to take the swine flu vaccine, the first flu shot. No choice and pure politics because everyone was so worked up about the safety and the efficacy of the vaccine.

            Like

          3. Which that in itself is also an issue within trying to create a “real” health system that includes a national response program that’s far more than just stockpiling respirators and PPE in some government warehouse next to the Ark of the Covenant in wait for the next pandemic. It’s going to come down to how “cures” in the form of medications, vaccines, etc. are mandated for public use. It’s great if a vaccine is developed for some loathsome disease that’s been let loose on all of humanity… but if everyone doesn’t take it then does it solve the problem in saving humanity? I can’t answer that…. but this pandemic is sure to bring up that question as we plod along…. 50 different ways and with no national leadership.
            It’s exactly as I have been saying for years…. the deciding factor will always be the growing population will force a diminishing of personal freedoms we once took for granted because everything will be determined “for the good of all” and less about “for the good of the individual”. And who decides?
            That’s generally when nature will intervene with a plague, a big war, or something to thin down the human herd to a manageable level and we can start over.

            Liked by 1 person

          4. @Doug

            You are becoming a naybob.

            It usually works better if we make it easier for people to do the right thing than it is to do the wrong thing. Gestapo tactics often backfire.

            The reward for taking a vaccine, when it works, is we don’t get sick, and we don’t make others sick by spreading disease. So, if we have a vaccine that works, we just have to convince people it works and make getting the vaccine cheap and convenient.

            Like

          5. We can’t convince people to wear a mask, without them thinking wearing it is being a political statement and an affront to their personal freedoms… and you think they will line up for a vaccine not thinking the same thing.. or that government is trying to fill them with drugs to be more compliant? Ha!

            Like

          6. I am not a fan of our governor here in Virginia, but he at least had of enough sense to try to force people to wear masks. He just made it a law that he said he would not enforce.

            Can’t make people wear masks. Dumb!

            Like

          7. Quite a few people have to be pressured to take vaccines. I was in the military when President Gerald Ford ordered military personnel to take the swine flu vaccine, the first flu shot. No choice and pure politics because everyone was so worked up about the safety and the efficacy of the vaccine.

            We were in the ROK when they were forcing anthrax vaccines on everyone. They knew in the event of an anthrax attack, the vaccines would have very limited to no efficacy whatsoever (the quantity of anthrax spores would be too high and overwhelm the immune system). It was a series of five doses that had to be taken on time. They ran out after the third and had to start over…then we left after a year, before the series could be completed. My spouse had about seven injections.

            It has been determined the TB vaccine is pretty worthless. It was once required in some countries. Not only does it not offer protection from TB, once one the vaccine is given the person will have a positive result on the intradermal screening test.

            Liked by 1 person

          8. NHS says….

            “The vaccine is 70 to 80% effective against the most severe forms of TB, such as TB meningitis in children. It’s less effective in preventing respiratory disease, which is the more common form of TB in adults.”

            Doesn’t seem too worthless to me. But then again.. it’s the NHS and Trump doesn’t like them either… so his supporters should follow along.

            Like

          9. Just to add:
            37,140 infants were born to mothers in the US military who had received anthrax vaccine.
            It has since been rated
            US FDA pregnancy category: D
            -This vaccine can cause fetal harm when given during pregnancy.
            -Apprise pregnant patients or those who become pregnant while on this product of the potential hazard to the fetus.

            Liked by 1 person

          10. “The vaccine is 70 to 80% effective against the most severe forms of TB, such as TB meningitis in children. It’s less effective in preventing respiratory disease, which is the more common form of TB in adults.”
            Doesn’t seem too worthless to me. But then again.. it’s the NHS and Trump doesn’t like them either… so his supporters should follow along.

            I’ve actually worked with TB patients, and seen TB on a slide (sputum sample, when I worked in the medical lab). But thanks for the insult after a brief search with Google.

            We didn’t stop giving TB immunizations when Trump came into office, we don’t do them because cost to gains wise it’s better to have intradermal screens available than have to give everyone a chest x ray yearly.
            The vast, vast majority of TB cases are respiratory. Tuberculous is an extremely rare form of meningitis, usually in immunocompromised people like those with HIV. I’ve never seen a case of TB meningitis, and I’ve seen a lot weird stuff…to include cryptococcosis (a black fungus, cryptococcus neoformans, associated with pigeons).

            Liked by 1 person

      2. @Tom
        Consider. If H. Clinton were president, would the world be safe from COVID-19, or the mass media less hysterical?
        There’s already a meme out answering that question: There would be a dozen investigations why 300 Americans had died of Covid-19. 😉

        Like

        1. @marmoewp

          H. Clinton’s administration would have tested only 300 people? Hadn’t considered that possibility, but it sort of makes sense. A dozen investigations blaming the Republicans would waste a lot of time and serve as the usual coverup.

          Liked by 1 person

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