Wednesday, February 26, 2020

Because I can do no better

Under Free use, here is the entire live-blogging reaction of Daily Kos writer Mark Sumner’s reaction to the train wreck of a news conference held this evening by Hair Fuhrer about COVID-19 in the U.S. minus his various twitter re-posts (click on the link to see those). Cheap Shots will follow:

At the last minute, the start of the press conference has been moved back by half an hour. Which is exactly the kind of highly organized response you want to see in a crisis. So … 6:30 PM ET then.
On Tuesday, Nancy Messonier, director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, warned that Americans can expect to see the COVID-19 coronavirus spread within the United States, and that “disruption to everyday life may be severe.“ It will be interesting to see if Messonier is part of the “Coronavirus Task Force” that Trump is introducing on Wednesday afternoon.
If you see people wearing masks during tonight's speech, it's not because of coronavirus. This announcement is being held in the White House Briefing room. Which at this point is under about a geologic age worth of dust.
If you’re thinking that the team assembled for the Coronavirus Task Force is almost all white men, don’t worry … there’s no almost about it. It’s all white men.
Trump continuing to test the health of his task force at this point by making them stand there and wait for him.
Trump begins by acknowledging the murders in Milwaukee. “A terrible thing. … Thank you very much.” Okay. 
Trump says that the U.S. is … through some “very good decisions that were ridiculed at the time” America remains safe. 
Says “we have a total of 15 … we took in some from Japan, they’re getting better too.” Then says “It could have been as many as 42.”
It’s 60.
“We have a total of 15 people...” Trump says again. This is already off the rails.
“We’ve had tremendous success, tremendous success, beyond what people would have thought.” Says that President Xi is “working very hard.”
Amazingly Trump has no script at all for this. He’s wandering all over to talk about China, then the money, then bringing in “a specialist tomorrow who is very talented at doing this.” And now he’s doing how many people are killed by the flu.
And again he says “the 15 people” THERE ARE 60.
Trump just keeps wandering all over the place -- China, money, experts, 15 people, flu, 1 or 2 people, one guy "pretty sick," 15 people, John's Hopkins says we're number 1. Indiana has great health care.
If the stock markets were still open, they'd be down 2000 right now.
Trump announces that he’s putting Mike Pence in charge of Team White Men. Now Pence gets a chance to speak.
As Trump is bragging that the U.S. response is going to be modeled after what Pence did in Indiana …
(Hey, it’s Chris, the owner of this blog. I would also like to note that Pence’s state saw an outbreak of HIV under his leadership, and his reaction to the HIV outbreak was to try to pray it away.)

HHS Secretary Alex Azar breaks down the numbers 15 in the initial set of cases from China, three more from evacuation flights, 42 from the Diamond Princess — Trump apparently cannot get past the first number.
Standing behind Azar, Trump continues to demonstrate the touching his face a lot that everyone should not be doing.
As Deputy Secretary Anne Schuchat speaks, Trump appears to be falling asleep while standing up.
Anthony Fauci now explaining that the fastest possible production of a vaccine would result in a vaccine in about … 18 months.
The kind word for Trump this evening is … incoherent. Any written transcript of his statements would be utterly incomprehensible. 
Trump is asked about restricting travel to South Korea or Italy. Says this is “not the right time” to do that.
Trump again says “we have a total of 15 cases most of them are totally recovered.” Then finally admits that “we did take in” 40 more people … who just happen to be Americans.
“Our consumer is the strongest it’s ever been… Our consumer is doing great. It’s very powerful.”
Trump simultaneously saying that “our flights in are very controlled” while not placing any restrictions except for China.
“When you have 15 people, and the 15 within a couple of days is going to be down to zero … that’s a pretty good job we’ve done.” 
Because Trump has now forgotten the other people. Again.
And now Trump explains how Nancy Pelosi is “incompetent” and “crying Chuck Schumer” is trying to create a panic. And everyone should work together.
Trump promises to sue more newspapers over opinion pieces. “There will be more coming, you’ll see.” The first point where he’s seemed half awake.
A note from the man who just put Mike Pence in charge of coronavirus: “Obama just appointed an Ebola Czar with zero experience in the medical area and zero experience in infectious disease control. A TOTAL JOKE!” – D.J. Trump

Trump is astounded to learn how many people die from flu. “I never heard of that.”
One thing about not knowing anything, is that there is infinite opportunity to be astonished.
And, for the second time, Trump blames the stock market crash on Democrats … who the stock market apparently just noticed this week.
The stock market was down over 1,000 points before the debate that Trump blamed for crashing the stock market.
“I’m using Mike because he’s in the administration and he’s very good at doing what he does and doing … this.”
Trump explains how “we’ll essentially have a flu shot for this in a very quick manner” when Fauci just explained it will take more than a year.
Trump now explaining how everyone is to blame for not making the GDP numbers he claimed, except him.
Trump says he agrees with Rush Limbaugh that people are “weaponizing” the coronavirus against him, then says the CDC is not doing that … which is what Limbaugh said.
And Wall Street expresses their opinion on Trump’s response …
(Dow Futures turned from positive to negative during the news conference)
Trump says if you catch Ebola “you disintegrate.” And nobody knew anything about it when he was talking about it. “Nobody ever heard of anything like that.”
Again … ignorance offers endless wonder.
Trump says he put Pence in charge because Azar is “very busy.”
Pence … apparently has nothing really to do.
The man who can’t say “China” corrects a reporter’s pronunciation of “Xi.”
Trump says that the flu’s fatality rate is “much higher” than coronavirus … and comes back again to saying “15 people.”
Sorry about you, other 45 people.
And Trump has escaped. That is your reassurance, America.

Don’t you feel safer now?

While we watch the inevitable catching up of how the world works with the policies of the current administration here are your Wednesday cheap shots (your choice of libations):

Everything is fine! All is well!” Take an extra shot for each step it takes you to get to Kevin Bacon from that quote.

You want to know why Bernie (and others) were booed when they criticized Bloomberg? This is why.

Many of the acts in my Radio Free California broadcasts have played here.

So after some criticism, the White House now has a small response to COVID-19. But you might catch cold.

Yes, he’s young, but I’d bet he’s seen all of the “Purge” movies, and maybe even the TV show.

Speaking of young, you know, some pretty good shit came out of the 1960’s including yours truly and his wife, and the start of the movement that eventually allowed Mayor Pete to marry his spouse. Here’s a partial list. It just didn’t include him (born 1982).

I’m thinking someone needs to hire (and be refused by) Dr. Jason Bull.

For the record, I have a mustache and beard. Pass the Robitussin.

Speaking of TV, this shit happens but Chris Matthews still is on the air.

I’m guessing that Francis might have stumbled into 4chan.

Did you know we have two moons? We have for about 3 years now.

Medal of Honor recipient commits treason.

About that swamp

Up, up, down, down, left, right, left, right, B, A and Finish. Thank you, Hashimoto-san.

And because I love you, Walking on Cars. 

And damn it, David Roback. It’s his wonderful guitar on this. 

Monday, February 24, 2020

Coronas for everyone!

Alas, not the terrible beer we all disguise as good by pushing a slice of lime into it. The Corona Virus, aka COVID-19, is truly becoming a world-wide problem, although it hasn’t really hit the U.S. much. I myself have been pretty cavalier about it and haven’t worried much about it, and I guess I still am like that. That said, there are a few things to consider.

The United States has no response to a pandemic. In April of 2018 Homeland Security advisor Tom Bossert and his entire team resigned – one day after John Bolton was hired. Among other things, he and his team were in charge of the Department of Homeland Security’s global health efforts. One month later, Bolton forced out Rear Admiral Timothy Ziemer from the National Security Council, as well as his entire team. He was in charge of the response to a potential pandemic.

Neither Mr. Bossert nor Rear Admiral Zeimer have been replaced. These positions, and those of their underlying teams, are vacant.

In addition to all of that, the CDC’s budget for such issues has been cut 80% by the current administration, making the number of countries helped out by the CDC decline from 49 to 10. This administration also cut funding to the WHO by 53% and to the Pan American Health Organization by 75%.

The CDC has over 100 labs across the country. As of today, only 3 can properly test for the Corona virus. There is a proposal in the works to request $1 Billion from congress to fight the disease, but that is woefully inadequate. Just to give you an idea of how much so, when there was an Ebola outbreak in 2014 the Obama administration requested $6 Billion, and got $5.4 Billion. Do you even remember the Ebola outbreak of 6 years ago?

If this virus actually reaches our shores in great numbers, which even I admit is possible, you’re going to see panic. That’s because no other response is even on the table.

Cheap Shots (go to Walgreens and get your flu shot!):

If it is your job to put out the fire, then put out the fucking fire! (Okay, that one earns you a shot of rum)

Math rocks, and this woman knew it. Thank you for everything.

And on a related note: Oops.

That’s Guilty, guilty!

Watch them leave. Bonus, I was sure he was going to say “hakuna matata”.

As I have said many a time, the Stock Market is not a realistic way to look at the economy. Here’s one reason why.

For me it’s not that Cooper used the word “bullshit” on air, but the fact that once upon a time that thing on Blagovich’s head was a toupee, and it was black.

I’m a coming for you Lizabeth! Pass the Robitussin!

And because I love you , Woody and Jeremy! 

Thursday, February 6, 2020

Ratfucking Iowa and beyond

So while Qusay and Uday have been spreading conspiracy theories about what went wrong with the counting of the Iowa Caucuses we have come to learn that there really was something going on, but it wasn’t the Democratic Party or anyone else on the left doing it. It was 4chan.


It would appear that the phone number used to report caucus results was easy to find with a Google search, and someone posted it on 4chan. This was followed with a post of "Uh oh how unfortunate it would be for a bunch of mischief makers to start clogging the lines," by an anonymous user. And that’s exactly  what happened. “Clog the lines [and] make the call lads.”

This is what the Republican Party has devolved to: Everything they claim their opponents are doing is actually being done by themselves. They are going to try to steal this election. By any means necessary.

Iowa wasn’t a test, it was a proof of concept. It is possible to hack an election without the use of any computers at all. Imagine this on a national scale. Imagine not just this, but computers changing results, lost ballots, thousands of people dropped from rolls, provisional ballots not counted, laws changed to restrict voting, notices posting incorrect dates about voting. Warnings of people being arrested at polling stations  for unpaid parking tickets…

Oh wait – all of this is already happening. And much more. After seeing Trump speak today, I have no doubt that stealing an election by any means necessary isn’t beyond him and his party. I’m still not 100% convinced they didn’t steal the last one.

Trump is a bully. When have you ever known a bully to give up power voluntarily? Free country my ass.

Cheap Shots (it’s Rum Thursday! Today I introduce you to one with a kooky name and great flavor):

Oh Uday, are you going to grab him by it?

Jim Jordan’s ears, Steve Scalise’s wife, Bobby Richardson, James Comey, hugging his daughter longer than his wife, and other weirdness from today’s appearance of the orange-toupee-ed groundhog.

As I have said to every single person who calls him the chosen one – No, he’s the Golden Calf.

Oh, and here is what the “chosen one: did at the National Prayer Breakfast today.

Rosa Parks has one of these too. It got cheapened. And notice the not too subtle digs CNN gets in during that last paragraph.

Five years? Talk about your Holiday in Cambodia.

Here is how to make a Yaka Hula Kickey Dula, which tastes like none of its ingredients:


Steps to Make It

  1. Gather the ingredients.
  2. In a cocktail shaker filled with ice, pour the rum, vermouth, and pineapple juice.
  3. Shake well.
  4. Strain into a chilled cocktail glass.
  5. Serve and enjoy!
Here come the Biden hearings. That should be surreal, because Hunter Bided didn’t yet work for the company that corrupt prosecutor was investigation. “Mr. Biden, tell me abut this.” “I can’t – I didn’t work there yet.”

And now Sidney Poitier takes the mantle as the highest-ranked person still living. on the AFI’s Greatest Male Screen Legends of Classic Hollywood Cinema. This man held the mantle until yesterday. In fact, on the Men’s side only Poitier is left. On the women’s is only Sophia Loren.

Oh hey, another airstrike and another leader dead.

Buttigieg tells us that there’s a Dark Money Bernie.

So in all fairness, meet Dark Money Pete.

But they all do it, ya know.

Having watched Brian Williams I would imagine that this was delivered with no small amount of dry sarcasm, but still, “Are you teaching democrats how to speak American?” Really?

And because I love you, the new song by the 1975 – which I think will be a big hit.

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Nancy Pelosi is a BOSS!

If you were involved in a drinking game tonight I will send flowers to your funeral. I didn't watch, becaue obvs.

Meanwhile, if you missed it, here is the return of Triumph the Insult Comic Dog 

Cheap Shots:

You think you have a tough job? Meet this guy.

Here’s your fucking medal. Bye now.

As of this writing the Iowa results are still a mess. But I notice that the only people to declare victory are two white guys.

Me: There is no such thing as a perfect movie. Nicholas Cage: Hold my Beer.

How about you just take a fucking knee?

He’s a Bond Villain, right?

Who else could claim something was rigged to have no apparent winner? Over Iowa’s embarrassingly small delegate count too.

And because I love you I must ask, are you a Man or a Muppet?