The horizon is not so far as we can see, but as far as we can imagine

Open Thread

As usual, use the comments for discussion of topics unrelated to recent posts.


Why Armed Right-wingers Were Able to Shut Down Michigan’s Legislature


May 16th US Covid Data


  1. S Brennan

    comment deleted from Moon over Alabama

    “hyping Chloroquine”?

    In my life, I have never seen a drug so thoroughly trashed. For every article that discusses hydroxychloroquine rationally, there literally hundreds who offer an emotional pedagogue on it’s monstrous effects.

    Never in my life have I seen “our masters” so concerned for our health? Never have I seen “our betters” advise us not take a drug that has been around, in one form or another, for over 125 years…why? Everyday media outlets advertise drugs with far more serious side effects, have you ever listened to the drug companies disclaimers?

    With all due respect, doesn’t hydroxychloroquine interaction with ZINC in the human body merit something more than an imperial dismissal?
    Thread here:

  2. Stirling S Newberry

    Statistics is not a discipline that Trump, his allies, and hangers-on get a “P” in.

  3. bruce wilder

    true to form, Texas is apparently muddying up their numbers

    feeble is as feeble does

  4. krake

    I live about 40 minutes out of Boston. Mass. is losing 150 people a day, on the record, with an above average death spike of 10% to 20% not attributed to c-19, according to the Globe. RI and CT are in it, and NH is starting to see daily deaths in the two counties that feed a workforce into Boston.

    And this has already, in 2 short months, become normalized, except in the communities immediately impacted (people in elder-warehouses, often with dementia; poor brown people who must work).

    NE is obviously packed with Brunzefans and other species of meatheads, but institutionally we have tended to at least respond to crisis and injustice as if they are what they are. There’s a lot if wealth, here, and not all of it is sequestered away from the Commons. There remains a bedrock congregationalist community focus.

    And yet, the pervasive attitude is that of resigned malaise.

    Shock, or apathy?…I wonder.

  5. Stirling S Newberry

    The border states should realize they are on the front lines. (Boston here myself.)

  6. Z

    I wonder of how many honey pot snares our rulers have laid for Senator Hawley?

    Stay disciplined, Josh! Please stay disciplined. You might be the best hope the working class got.


  7. bruce wilder

    Josh Hawley is the honey pot snare.

  8. Z

    Hawley is the most powerful person in Congress who has maintained their moral and mental clarity.

    I bet a good number of these Congresspeople are being blackmailed.

    The carrot and the stick work best together. You work someone like McConnell, who has had rumors floating around about him for many years, like this: you offer to humiliate him or to make him a multi-millionaire. That gets you more than mere representation, that gets you devotion.


  9. Zachary Smith

    While checking some of my outgoing emails from yesterday, I noticed I’d sent out an all-points family FYI about how my county’s Virus cases had increased 11% in the previous two days. The number just got checked again, and I find the increase since yesterday is another 14%. If this trend holds up the small local hospital is going to get overwhelmed. Every retail place here is open except some restaurants and bank lobbies. Few people are wearing masks, and many of those don’t use them correctly. Do Red-Staters have a suicide wish?

  10. Z

    Obama looks like sh*t, I’m happy to say. He looks like he’s aged at least ten years since he left office.

    I guess the sun you get on yachts on the ocean is harsh on your skin.


  11. Zachary Smith

    Title: For-profit nursing homes have had far worse COVID-19 outcomes than public facilities — and three of the largest paid out $1.5 billion to shareholders

    Teaser Quote:

    Deaths in long-term-care homes account for an estimated 82 per cent of all COVID-19 deaths in Canada. That’s the highest proportion among 14 countries found by international researchers comparing fatalities in long-term-care settings.

    In Ontario, 1,306 COVID-19 deaths have occurred in nursing homes, according to a Toronto Star tally.

    A recent Star investigation revealed that for-profit long-term-care homes in the province have had far worse outcomes than non-profit and public facilities. In homes with a COVID-19 outbreak, residents in for-profit facilities are about twice as likely to catch the virus and die than residents in non-profits, and about four times as likely to become infected and die from the virus as those in a municipally owned home.

    I’d deduce from this it’s a better idea to send Grandma to a facility where the owners spend lots of money on HER rather than lining their own pockets – at her expense.

  12. Zachary Smith

    Some things are more important than others. Cutting taxes on the filthy rich is always necessary, and so is giving piles of money to the Apartheid state. US citizens who are not filthy rich are basically SOL.

    While millions of Americans are out of work due to the coronavirus, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee is poised to vote for a 10-year package to give Israel $38 billion.

    Extremely Bipartisan stuff – the Apartheid state owns both US parties.

  13. Zachary Smith

    A person tends to get overwhelmed with all the stories available out there, but when one keeps showing up on the varied sites I’ve been visiting, maybe it’s time to pause and read the thing.

    Give Me Liberty — No, Wait, Give Me Death

    Unless you’ve joined the army of professional Democrats pining for the return of former President George W. Bush, you might well be suffering from a form of mental whiplash watching conservatives suddenly demand en masse that Americans be given the freedom to get themselves and everyone around them fatally sick. Perhaps the Federalist put it best late last month:

    It seems harsh to ask whether the nation might be better off letting a few hundred thousand people die. Probably for that reason, few have been willing to do so publicly thus far. Yet honestly facing reality is not callous, and refusing even to consider whether the present response constitutes an even greater evil than the one it intends to mitigate would be cowardly.

    Unfortunately, this monstrous logic has been taken up by a broad swath of the Right, from economists and news anchors to Trump himself. It’s been quite the reversal for the crowd that spent the entirety of this century insisting no expense or civil liberty should be spared to save even the most minute number of American lives from suicide bombers.

    Crazy stuff.

  14. Z

    It’s sadly hilarious that all we ever hear about is Russia Russia Russia trying to influence our politics when Mossad somehow has enough influence in the U.S. that they were able to have one of their operatives run an active pedophilia blackmail operation masquerading as an investment firm even after U.S. authorities had the goods on Epstein.

    In April 2008, he went to Israel and met with a number of research scientists and visited different Israeli military bases. During this trip, he thought about staying in Israel in order to avoid trial, and possible jail, for charges he was facing for sex crimes; however, he opted to return to the United States.

    I guess they were able to work something out so he was able to come home and continue preying upon underage females on U.S. soil.

    Russia Russia Russia …


  15. Lex

    S. Brennan: I’m not sure what chloroquine’s (and derivatives) affinity for zinc and its potential use as a part of cancer therapy has to do with Covid. Yes, it’s a long used anti-malarial but according to a PhD microbiologist friend, the way it works against malaria isn’t even fully understood. Its side effects have only been understood in the last 15 years or so, and they’re ugly. My wife takes it as part of her immune suppression cocktail. And because of it she has to be monitored closely for significant eye injury related to to it and it’s a part of the reason she’s gotten to experience a heart catheter while awake. It’s relation to body weight is well enough understood that there are handy charts for how much a person can take to (mostly) avoid the worst side effects. The dosages being reported in those early studies for Covid are well above the safety line.

    Now, since we know that it has immune suppression functions it may have some utility against Covid, particularly in severe cases (though the better designed studies of it suggest not much when balanced against the fatal side effects). There’s nothing stopping doctors from using it off-label for Covid if they think it will help in a specific case. And *maybe* it reduces the chances of a severe Covid case if taken prophylacticly. I hope so because my wife catching Covid is probably a death sentence. But again, there are well known, very serious side effects from taking it daily.

    And all the crackpot “boost the immune system” to ward off Covid, just proclaims that the boosters don’t understand how any of this works. Certainly not the immune system. If anything, suppressing the immune system looks to be a possible defense against Covid… but that’s idle speculation on my part as a guy who got medicine forced on him as a hobby and gets to have long conversations with world class rheumatologists on a regular basis.

  16. Z

    I really wish our rulers would have announced back in March that they were going to make Lyin’ Liz the de facto democratic party nominee once Sloppy Joe is inevitably sent out to pasture instead of dragging this running mate selection farce out, but I suppose they have to wait until Sloppy Joe hobbles to the finish line before they come out with the big “news” and then let it settle in a bit before they begin their media driven campaign of feigned alarm … whispers at first and then shouts all at once … about his cognitive impairments.

    Otherwise voters might question as to why they would hand the nomination to someone who came in 3rd place in their own state. And as to why Lyin’ Liz never came after Biden for his bankruptcy bill during her campaign and chose instead to attack the candidate who is arguably the most pro-women vote in Congress as a misogynist.


  17. S Brennan

    On the bright side Z,

    A lot of political hacks have disappeared from this site now that the vast majority of D’s are eager to vote whatever shit sandwich the DNCers serve up. Because, we all know, any gilded-age-neo-con[D]* is better than Trump. And that means any [D], no matter how loathsome…and so it goes.

    *sans mercantilism

  18. Z


    I hope someone runs as a third party candidate who I’m not ashamed to vote for. Jesse V would do, but he’s probably too sane to run and has said such. I’d even vote for a libertarian over Trump or the Biden stand-in. Justin Amash? Sure, why not.


  19. Zachary Smith

    A curious thing has happened in the past few days – the name of Mike “lard butt” Pompeo has popped up in several places.

    Reuters headline: “White House says Trump fired State Dept. watchdog at Pompeo’s request”

    An explanation from USA Today: “Trump administration’s firing of watchdog designed to protect Secretary Pompeo, Dems say” Inside the article is mention of Wide Body corruption.

    Pompous has just made a trip to the Apartheid state to rock the boat there about their cozying up with China.

    And near Israel’s Palmachim air force base, a Hong Kong-based company, Hutchison Water International, is a finalist to build a desalination plant that Israel says will be the largest in the world.

    Trump administration officials have repeatedly warned Israeli officials that intelligence sharing between the two close allies could be impaired or compromised over such investments by China.
    The Chinese Embassy’s spokesman responded with an Op-Ed article in The Jerusalem Post in which he called Mr. Pompeo’s remarks “absurd” and repeated the comparison to anti-Semitism.

    The Chinese Ambassador to the pissant state suddenly turned up mysteriously dead this morning. Is it all a coincidence, or does the Fat ***** figure he is so close to setting off The Second Coming that the rules don’t apply to him anymore?

  20. Arthur

    Just a quick word about the Michigan situation. Of course the legislature acted cowardly, but at this point in time does anyone really expect anything else from anybody? People are stunned nowadays whenever anyone show courage of any kind. And as far as worried about the cops joining the right wingers. . .well, did everyone hear about that copper in Parkland? That cop who ran away once the bullets started flying. He just got reinstated with full back pay. That’s your typical small town cop. As for the big city boys, they’re made up of a wide variety. No one size fits all.

    I stand by what I’ve said before. We are at the beginning of the breakup is the United States. How long and how it ends is anyone’s guess.

  21. Zachary Smith

    Maybe I need to re-adjust my tinfoil hat about the Pompeo thing.

    FT: Pompeo accuses China of destroying coronavirus samples — April 22

    UPI: Pompeo: United States condemns China’s attempts to ‘steal’ COVID-19 data — May 14

    The Hill: Pompeo warns China over alleged interference in US reporting in Hong Kong — May 17

    Fox: Pompeo says China poses real ‘risk’ to US, in new interview — 20 hours ago

    Pompeo might simply be the most public/famous name in a Trumpie scheme to start a “get re-elected” war with China.

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