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Member since: Fri Sep 17, 2004, 03:59 PM
Number of posts: 67,631

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Sooner or later all questions of existential risk come down to a global understanding and agreements

'That’s problematic, because while our economic systems are international, our political systems remain almost entirely national or federal. Problems that affect everyone are consequently owned by no one in particular. If humanity is to step back from the precipice, it will have to learn how to recognise its common bonds as greater than its differences.'


Pandemic Art

Andrea Mitchel lashes out at Dr. Deborah Birx, Trump's appeasing doctor

“Unfortunately I think that the credibility of the scientists now is on the line,” Andrea Mitchell said. “They have to decide whether to stay on the inside and be valuable, or whether or not they see another alternative
... Because when Dr. Birx said today that sunlight does kill the virus, she is perpetuating an unscientific untested single-study presented by a non-scientist from the Department of Homeland Security which led to the president, as she put it, ‘not fully digested the data’, she needed to be very clear on disavowing it and to this point she still has not been even this morning.”

Video & More:


the sweet silence

The world has loved, hated and envied the US, Now, for the first time, we pity it

Fintan O’Toole: Donald Trump has destroyed the country he promised to make great again

The grotesque spectacle of the president openly inciting people (some of them armed) to take to the streets to oppose the restrictions that save lives is the manifestation of a political death wish. What are supposed to be daily briefings on the crisis, demonstrative of national unity in the face of a shared challenge, have been used by Trump merely to sow confusion and division. They provide a recurring horror show in which all the neuroses that haunt the American subconscious dance naked on live TV.

Will American prestige ever recover from this shameful episode? The US went into the coronavirus crisis with immense advantages: precious weeks of warning about what was coming, the world’s best concentration of medical and scientific expertise, effectively limitless financial resources, a military complex with stunning logistical capacity and most of the world’s leading technology corporations. Yet it managed to make itself the global epicentre of the pandemic.

Usually when this kind of outlandish idiocy is displaying itself, there is the comforting thought that, if things were really serious, it would all stop. People would sober up. Instead, a large part of the US has hit the bottle even harder. And the president, his party and their media allies keep supplying the drinks.

And this will get worse before it gets better. Trump has at least eight more months in power. In his inaugural address in 2017, he evoked “American carnage” and promised to make it stop. But now that the real carnage has arrived, he is revelling in it. He is in his element.


Boston Globe (Opinion): This is a catastrophic failure & Trump needs to resign over coronavirus

The United States has just over 4 percent of the world’s population, but had about one-third of all global coronavirus cases and one-quarter of the fatalities, as of Friday.

This is a catastrophic failure that can be laid largely at the feet of President Trump. Editorial boards and politicians — both Democratic and Republican — should be calling on him to resign immediately.

It’s not just the catalog of screw-ups that led us to this point — the playing down of the threat, the lack of testing, the spread of misinformation and lies, and the government-wide inattention to the issue. It’s that Trump represents an ongoing danger to the health and well-being of the American people.

Consider, for example, the strange case of hydroxychloroquine, the anti-malarial drug that Trump began publicly touting several weeks ago as a potential treatment for the coronavirus. “What do you have to lose?” the president asked, about a drug that had not been approved by the FDA for that purpose. It turns out the answer is “your life.”


'See Jane run.'

Staffers on the National Security Council initially generated multipage memos for Trump, as they had for Bush and Obama, that outlined detailed policies and strategies. He also received a thick briefing book each night. Over time, it became clear that Trump, unlike Bush and Obama, rarely read these. An order came down from senior officials to reduce the NSC memos to a single page. Eventually, aides came to the conclusion that the best way to raise an issue in writing was to prepare a long, narrow card, made of heavy paper stock, with “The White House” written across the top. One former aide said the information that needed to be relayed to Trump had to be reduced to “two or three points, with the syntactical complexity of ‘See Jane run.

Worth some time (it explains a lot):

The only reason he wants people to inject bleach is he thinks it will make everybody white.


Liberate your brain

Trump's death march to November: If they're not his voters, let 'em die

Trump can't beat the coronavirus — so now he wants to use it as a weapon in the November election


...............among the few calls a frustrated Trump agrees to take as he molders away in the White House are from his campaign manager, Brad Parscale. After Trump has heard the bad news about the coronavirus from his medical experts at his daily press briefing, what do Trump and Parscale discuss? “The latest polling data,” the Times reports.

Bingo. At six o’clock he’s hearing that the body count has hit 50,000. At nine, he’s hearing how far he is behind Biden in the key swing states of Florida, Michigan, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Ohio. If he’s running behind now, with 50,000 dead, what’s it going to look like in October or November when the number tops 100,000?

Trump is balancing the grim news from his medical experts against the equally grim news from his campaign manager. When the choice is between dead people or his reelection, it’s an easy call. He is going to let it rip. His poll numbers are already so bad, he doesn’t have anything to lose. What’s another 50,000 to 100,000 dead compared to four more years of profiteering from the White House?

Way more:
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