The Meltdown Begins

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump): .@Twitter is now interfering in the 2020 Presidential Election. They are saying my statement on Mail-In Ballots, which will lead to massive corruption and fraud, is incorrect, based on fact-checking by Fake News CNN and the Amazon Washington Post….

Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump): ….Twitter is completely stifling FREE SPEECH, and I, as President, will not allow it to happen!

Right on cue, Trump dives in. It’ll intensify, for sure. I wonder what he thinks he, as president, can do?

Totally Not Political

I’m a child of the 60’s. I grew up in Iowa. Radio was quite vanilla, except for a late night show on KAAY out of Little Rock, Arkansas. Beaker Street set the tone for alternative radio in the middle part of the country. Clyde Clifford. Long album cuts. It eventually got downsized to weekly, instead of nightly, and then vanished. It’s back on Friday nights on a network of small Arkansas stations and at http://www.arkansasrocks.com on Friday nights from 9-midnight with the original Clyde Clifford hosting. KAAY had a nighttime signal that went from Cuba to Canada, so many, many people heard it. Here’s the story…https://armoneyandpolitics.com/beaker-street-returns-on-arkansas-rocks-radio-network/

Some Quotable Quotes

Our 6-year-old commander in chief randomly tweets this bit of gibberish tonight, referencing nothing, quoting nothing:

Then, a few minutes later, two quotes that seem strangely similar to each other, filled with childish name-calling:

Sigh.

Good Thoughts

This makes a lot of sense to me. We’ll be rolling the dice and still need to be very careful, but…we might get lucky. Might.

Caitlin Rivers, PhD (@cmyeaton): Most states have begun to reopen. Here is my guess for what that will mean for transmission. A thread. 1/

Caitlin Rivers, PhD (@cmyeaton): The best possible scenario would have been that communities have capacities to do widespread diagnostic testing + contact tracing + isolation/quarantine. These case-based interventions allowed some countries to drive transmission way down. 2/

Caitlin Rivers, PhD (@cmyeaton): There has been some progress in building those capacities in the US, with states expanding testing+tracing. But we haven’t fully transitioned to managing our outbreak in this way, and so I don’t think we can expect the success that e.g. Germany and South Korea have had. 3/

Caitlin Rivers, PhD (@cmyeaton): So then the question becomes what’s going to happen with our outbreaks? My guess is most communities will remain at more or less steady levels of transmission, with some drifting up and some drifting down. (keep reading, caveats ahead) 4/

Caitlin Rivers, PhD (@cmyeaton): If people continue to do some combo of social distancing, staying home more, masks, more contact tracing, I doubt we will see widespread exponential growth like we did early on. These indiv actions cumulatively will help to keep transmission suppressed but not fully controlled 5/

Caitlin Rivers, PhD (@cmyeaton): However, I think there will be hotspots and flares, maybe originating in gatherings like parties or sporting events. There will also continue to be serious outbreaks that start in nursing homes or correctional facilities or plants and then spread into the broader community. 6/

Caitlin Rivers, PhD (@cmyeaton): What does this mean for us? Our actions, the choices we make, are the front lines. We should stay home when we can, avoid gatherings, wear masks indoors in public, wash hands. This next phase is up to us, and it’s with continued vigilance that we can further slow the virus. 7/7

I

The Trump Drug Deal

Matthew Gertz (@MattGertz): Fox News VP explains that the drug that his colleagues have been recommending at every turn for months “will kill you.” https://www.mediamatters.org/coronavirus-covid-19/comprehensive-guide-foxs-promotion-hydroxychloroquine-and-chloroquine https://twitter.com/atrupar/status/1262484050964631557

Matthew Gertz (@MattGertz): Impossible to say strongly enough that the reason we have come to this position is 100% due to the work of Cavuto’s Fox News colleagues. They did this. https://www.mediamatters.org/coronavirus-covid-19/comprehensive-guide-foxs-promotion-hydroxychloroquine-and-chloroquine https://twitter.com/atrupar/status/1262484050964631557

Matthew Gertz (@MattGertz): In minutes Fox’s take on hydroxychloroquine has gone from “This will kill you” to “if it’s available to you and you can take it, you do it, that’s a prudent way of looking at in.” https://twitter.com/MattGertz/status/1262491993881616385/video/1

Matthew Gertz (@MattGertz): This is so incredibly bad for people who depend on hydroxychloroquine to treat their chronic conditions.

Matthew Gertz (@MattGertz): It does not matter if it’s true or not, the president saying that he’s taking hydroxychloroquine as a preventative could cause a huge run on the drug as well as people taking it then changing their behavior because they think they can’t get the coronavirus.

My question: why would the White House doctor write a prescription just because Trump wanted the drug? Seems unprofessional and irresponsible to me.

Why?

That’s my question for today. Why did the Trump administration spend money to print silly little letters from the IRS to tell me that they’re depositing the stimulus money directly into my account a week AFTER the deposit was made? Using the postal service he thinks is run horribly? Why not FED EX the letter, if that’s a better solution? The answers are obvious. The post office actually DOES work. And the sole purpose of that letter was so everyone can see Trump’s signature. And some will think he’s personally responsible for that money.

Monday Reading List

Neal Katyal (@neal_katyal): The combo of these 3 pieces about DOJ dropping the Flynn charges is astounding. I’ve never seen anything like it

1.Mary McCord who ran the National Security Division explains DOJ filing&explanation (not signed by any career prosecutors)distorted her words https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/10/opinion/bill-barr-michael-flynn.html

Neal Katyal (@neal_katyal): 2. Chuck Rosenberg, a deeply respected former prosecutor, catalogs why DOJ’s new filing is obviously wrong. https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2020/05/10/long-list-people-who-thought-flynns-lies-were-material/

Neal Katyal (@neal_katyal): 3. Jonathan Kravis, who was the Roger Stone prosecutor, explains that this is part of a pattern of DOJ helping Trump’s friends and not applying these standards in any other criminal case. https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2020/05/11/i-left-justice-department-after-it-made-disastrous-mistake-it-just-happened-again/

Neal Katyal (@neal_katyal): As I said last week, because Barr dismissed the charges, DOJ is hoping that there will be no forum to test whether their allegations about misconduct re Flynn are true. But the Judge presiding over the case still can investigate–it’s the last place. END https://www.nytimes.com/2020/05/08/opinion/michael-flynn-trump-barr.html

I hope these articles helped you understand this situation. Ugly is rampant in this administration.

Take A Break

And chuckle. Life goes on…

Matthew Gertz (@MattGertz): oh god the toddler discovered baby shark why why why why why

Matthew Gertz (@MattGertz): why is this happening why god why

Matthew Gertz (@MattGertz): does… does god think i’m the congressman

Matthew Gertz (@MattGertz): heard from the next room: “let’s mess with daddy”

**song starts again**

Why, Why, Why?

Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT): Can I tell you a quick, important story? About why we are going it alone on finding a vaccine, when most of the rest of the world collaborates…

1/ It’s the story of the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations, and how Trump’s refusal to join has left us vulnerable.

Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT): 2/ CEPI was launched in early 2017 – a groundbreaking international public/private organization to develop vaccines for new, emerging diseases.

CEPI was designed, in many ways, for the Coronavirus crisis.

Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT): 3/ Heralded as “the largest vaccine development initiative ever against viruses that are potential epidemic threats”, the EU, Japan, Canada, India, Saudi Arabia, the Gates Foundation and many others quickly joined.

But the U.S. was nowhere to be found.

Trump wouldn’t join.

Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT): 4/ And so when CEPI began work on a vaccine for Coronavirus, the United States was left on the outside. This means that if CEPI develops a vaccine, it will likely give preference to its members.

The good news – CEPI still wants us as a member. It’s not too late.

Chris Murphy (@ChrisMurphyCT): 5/ So this is a NO BRAINER – in the next Coronavirus relief bill, Congress should require the Trump Administration to join CEPI and make a contribution to their work.

Maybe we find a vaccine in the U.S. first – but if a CEPI partner finds it, we want be part of the team.

It just boggles the mind. We shoot our collective selves in the foot so often. But there’s one man with the gun. And a few others handing him the bullets.