Links 3/5/2020

New Zealand Birds Show Humanlike Ability To Make Predictions Science

NASA drops mind-blowing 1.8 billion-pixel Mars landscape panorama that might make you cry CNET (David L)

Boom! Scientists spot the biggest known explosion in the universe Space (Dan K)

Silent earthquakes are tied to changes in fluid deep below Cascadia’s fault LiveScience (Kevin W)

a href=”” rel=”nofollow”>French ski resort goes bust due to lack of snow in Alps Independent (resilc)

Tropical forests losing their ability to absorb carbon, study finds Guardian (Kevin W)

Climate Change Will Turn These Common Foods Toxic Vice (resilc)

Simple Systems Have Less Downtime Greg Kogan. This is considered to be novel?!?!


Coronavirus mutates into second strain which is more aggressive and contagious Mirror (David L). Story less alarming than headline.

Coronavirus is mutating: Chinese scientists find second strain Fortune (David L). Points out limited data, more mutations likely. So which strain was found in WA?

Why so many epidemics originate in Asia and Africa – and why we can expect more The Conversation (resilc)

Experts confirm human to animal spread of coronavirus Telegraph (David L)

Woman holds sign outside quarantined U.S. care home in desperate bid to find out about husband CBC (Mark A)

Coronavirus cases are spreading in Switzerland SwissInfo. MA flagged this section from the WHO. Surprised to see the cheery take re R0:

The head of the World Health Organization (WHO) Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on Tuesday that about 3.4% of confirmed cases of COVID-19 have died, far above seasonal flu’s fatality rate of under 1%, but the novel coronavirus can be contained.

“To summarise, COVID-19 spreads less efficiently than flu, transmission does not appear to be driven by people who are not sick, it causes more severe illness than flu, there are not yet any vaccines or therapeutics, and it can be contained,” he declared.

‘You don’t want to go to war with a president’ Politico

U.S. Hospitals Say They’re Ready for Coronavirus. Their Infection Control Violations Say Otherwise. ProPublica (resilc)

Los Angeles-Area Officials Declare Emergency After Confirming Six New Coronavirus Cases Over 48 hours CNBC

First days at the heart of an outbreak: Life Care nursing home becomes national epicenter of coronavirus Seattle Times (Chuck L). From yesterday, still germane.

IMF sets aside $50bn for coronavirus-hit countries Financial Times

Italy: Coronavirus death toll to 107; 3,089 cases: Live updates Al Jazeera

Italy is shutting down all schools nationwide amid coronavirus outbreak CBS

Coronavirus in Israel: 60,000 Quarantined; Mass Gatherings Forbidden Haaretz

Release of James Bond film No Time To Die delayed amid coronavirus fears BBC (David L)

2 cases of coronavirus in EU institutions confirmed Politico

Coronavirus Porn Is Going Viral on Pornhub Vice (resilc)

Jet fuel woes set to linger as coronavirus sickens global aviation Reuters

Flybe: airline collapses two months after government announces rescue Guardian (PlutoniumKun)

How to Hedge a Coronavirus Wall Street Journal (Stefan P). Interesting but misleading headline. The investor was simply buying grossly mispriced risk. This is like Magnetar sponsoring toxic subprime CDOs. Magnetar correctly saw the trade they structured as no lose (they’d make a small profit if subprime defaults were tame and a killing if they weren’t) and simply reloaded every time the pricing lined up.

Greta Thunberg brands EU’s new climate law ‘surrender’ BBC (David L)

After the EU Turned Greece into a Refugee Warehouse, a Backlash New York Review of Books (resilc). Appalling this has gone on so long….since 2015.


On Afghanistan, I Have to Say This: Bravo, Donald Trump Intercept (resilc)

Netanyahu’s bid for Israeli government majority slips away despite party’s top finish Los Angeles Times

US launches airstrike against Taliban The Hill (resilc). Not agreement capable.

Imperial Collapse Watch

Army’s new coal-powered tiltrotor gaining traction in Congress Duffle Blog (Kevin W)

Trump Transition

Trump Is Running This Country Into the Ground Nation. Resilc: “I’m sorry, I don’t see a big difference between Obomba and the DNC running it in the ground or the GOP doing it. We end up still in the ground.”

Court That Blocked ‘Remain in Mexico’ Policy Allows Trump Plan to Continue for Now Wall Street Journal

Chief Justice Slams Schumer For ‘Threatening’ Statements Law360


SOUTH CAROLINA 2020 DEMOCRATIC PARTY PRIMARY Exit Poll Versus Reported Vote Count TDMS Research (furzy). Circulate widely. Deviations from exit polls in SC so large, and naturally benefitting Biden most and hurting Sanders the most, as to suggest the count was cooked.

Biden surge calms Democratic jitters The Hill

Capitalism Is Rallying Behind Joe Biden Vice (resilc)

Bernie Sanders in Familiar Territory: Fending Off an Establishment Favorite Bloomberg (David L)

Voting for the Safe Choice Means Doom for Us All Gizmodo (resilc)

Millions of uncounted California ballots to shed light on Sanders’ future Guardian (Kevin W)

Why Massachusetts Voters Turned Their Backs On Elizabeth Warren WBUR (David L)

Democrats pin their hopes on gaffe-prone Joe Biden Tucker Carlson, Fox. From Monday, but OMG, Carlson does it again…

DNC To Raise Debate Threshold After Tulsi Earns Delegate Heavy (BC). See also: DNC Scrambles To Change Debate Threshold After Gabbard Qualifies Caitlin Johnstone (Chuck L and Water Cooler).

Aspiring terrorists are in every Iowa school, surveillance companies warn Cedar Rapids Gazette (Chuck L)

Wall Street Is Falling Out of Love With a Once-Coveted Fossil Fuel Bloomberg (David L)

Struggling AT&T Plans ‘Tens of Billions’ In Cost Cuts, More Layoffs ars technica

Facebook Has a Prescription: More Pharmaceutical Ads Washington Post

Uber’s former self-driving chief declares bankruptcy Financial Times

Reddit Has Become the Gospel of Personal Finance Quartz

Twelve Years After 2008 The Playbook And Verbiage Is The Same By The Fed. Forbes (resilc)

Class Warfare

Top French court deals blow to Uber by giving driver ’employee’ status Reuters

A bonus antidote from Chuck L. Photo was dated 2/28. Subject line: “Jolie’s last photo shoot.” So so sorry, this is very hard to do. And she looked like a sweet girl:

On Friday, February 28, we saw our dear dachshund Jolie off on her last journey, to the great dog park in the sky. She would have fifteen years old on Sunday, March 1.

And a bonus from guurst:

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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  1. WheresOurTeddy

    Vote fixing, er, I mean, vote counting in South Carolina favored Biden and Klobuchar and hurt Bernie and Warren the most?

    I’d be shocked if I hadn’t lived through the last 5 years and paid any modicum of attention.

    1. Carolinian

      From the article

      Sanders received 7,400 less votes than projected by the exit poll

      out of 528,726 votes cast. Fraud at the polls or clickbait?

      1. lyman alpha blob

        Here’s another example. Front page of Maine’s biggest paper today –

        You may hit a paywall so here’s the subhead from the article –

        Voting results defied conventional geographic and demographic divisions among the state’s Democrats, who reacted to a winnowing of the field in recent days.

        And from the article itself –

        The moderate [Biden] also dominated blue-collar mill towns like Millinocket, Rumford, Jay and Madawaska despite Sanders’ long-standing and vocal opposition to international trade deals that many say contributed to declines in Maine’s manufacturing industry.


        Andrew Rudalevige, chairman of Bowdoin College’s Department of Government and Legal Studies, said it is unusual to see such a rapid coalescing around one candidate in Maine and nationally. The former vice president wasn’t even above the 15 percent threshold to receive delegates in Maine just a few weeks ago, when Colby College conducted a poll of voters.

        Biden ‘won’ by about 3000 votes. As I mentioned Tuesday night many towns including my own ran out of ballots because the SecState didn’t have enough printed, and they were feeding photocopied ballots into the scan machines, with many being rejected. After raising a stink about it, our city clerk instructed the election clerks to stop feeding the photocopied ballots into the machines and count them by hand, but that was just in our city and it didn’t happen until probably at least 6:30, hours after they ran out of official ballots. Who knows if the machines counted the photocopied ballots correctly – I don’t believe the machines were designed to accurately count ad hoc ballots like this.

        So my educated guess would be that the state relied on the scanners to count many thousands of photocopied ballots that the scanners weren’t designed for. Sanders crushed Clinton in Maine in 2016 by 64% to 35%. This time the mainstream candidate gets a slim victory. Is the situation really that different from 4 years ago? IIRC the media was making the same anti-Sanders claims then as they are now.

        Something really stinks about this.

        1. MLTPB

          A few ways to take it, which has been commented on a few times.

          1. Fishy, but we dont know how. The rest of primaries are hopeless (because we dont know how they did it).

          Give up.

          2. Have faith nothing fishy. Go forth and vote.

          3. Keep voting, convinced it’s fishy. See 1. Why?

          I think 2 is the better option, even if naive.

        2. Carolinian

          Well in SC Biden won overwhelmingly so it’s hard to see how a few thousand votes would matter. Also our election machinery is run by state officials who are needless to say Republicans. Blame it on Clyburn if you want or maybe Bernie just doesn’t have the voter enthusiasm that many would wish.

          Of course if it narrows down to him versus Biden then that can only be good for Sanders going forward. Anything could happen to Sleepy Joe.

        1. Yves Smith Post author

          Please read the article. It indicates that the votes results were meaningfully out of line with the exit polls, not “projections”. In many countries and jurisdictions, that level of deviation is grounds for a recount at no expense to the candidate questioning the results.

          But no paper trail in SC.

          1. MLTPB

            Sorry about that. I will read the article as suggested.

            I was responding to Carolinian’s post:

            From the article

            Sanders received 7,400 less votes than projected by the exit poll

            out of 528,726 votes cast. Fraud at the polls or clickbait?

            I thought 1.33% (7,400 over 528,726) off projected by the exit poll was not too off.

            If they look at 7,400 vs what Sanders got (out of 528,726), it might up that 1.33% to maybe 3% or more.

            I dont know if that kind of impresicion is or is not acceptable.

            Reply ↓

            1. MLTPB

              Sorry, did not have time to finish before the time limit.

              The difference is much larger for Biden’s total. Combine the over and under counting of the two candidates, it is even more conspicuous.

              And that is in the article, but was not quoted here.

    2. BillC

      Remember the suspicion that Republican voters in the open SC primary might systematically vote for Biden as the weaker Trump opponent? They could score a second disruptive effect in one go by responding falsely to an exit poll, not only distorting the primary result but further discrediting the primary itself. What’s not to like? Hard to know any more where disillusioned skepticism ends and tin-foil-hat paranoia begins.

  2. WheresOurTeddy

    Re: Biden’s dementia (let’s just call it what it is) –

    Bernie, for once in your life, take off the gloves. No more “Joe is a friend of mine” BS. This dude has dementia and will be crushed in a landslide if he is the nominee. Make the electability argument and if you have to say “I can hold a thought in my head long enough to get to the end of the sentence”, SO BE IT.

    The very idea of representative government is at stake.

    1. roadrider

      The Dem establishment probably thinks they can get away with nominating Uncle Joe, hoping that delusional voters will think they’re voting for Obama 2.0. Once he’s in the White House he will be nothing more than a clueless figurehead who they can easily manipulate.

      The problem with this is that the general electorate is not like the Dem primary electorate and unlike the NPR crowd the critical voters in the industrial mid-west and minority working class don’t have fond memories of Obama’s reign and are just as likely to stay home as they did in 2016.

      1. Making Sense

        “nominating Uncle Joe, hoping that delusional voters will think they’re voting for Obama 2.0.”

        well, i would not be so sure that people will not vote for biden. the numbers from the super tuesday were crushing, even taking into account deceitful counting and whatever dnc did.
        do the biden super tuesday numbers make sense, not in the sense of ought-to-be-different, but could it be a reflection of the state-of-affairs in those states?

        1. urdsama

          As roadrider said “the general electorate is not like the Dem primary electorate”.

          This is the issue. Obama’s positive legacy outside of centrist democrats is fading fast. Obama 2.0 might be a real problem, and that is really all Biden has left. If you look at his present (fading mental facilities), and his pre-Obama administration past (Anita Hill, war and bankruptcy votes) he provides a lot of ammo for Trump.

        2. ambrit

          The numbers are crushing only if you do not factor in the effects of Warren and Bloomberg on the Sanders total. That and the Republicans playing “fifth columnists” in the voting booth by voting for Democrat candidates in the open primary states. That seems to have been engineered. After all, why not have a bit of fun when Trump is guaranteed to win the Republican primaries this year?
          What it really says is that the early primary schedule was designed to give outsized influence over the choice of the eventual nominee to conservative Democrat voters. There is the main lesson to be taken from this cycle; the Deep South of America is conservative.

        3. roadrider

          How does a guy win 10/14 state primaries when he hardly visited those states at all and had little organization or on-the-ground support in any of them?

          The fix was in. The DNC cant rig the general election the way they can the primaries which are skewedto the NPR-tote-bag, PMC, Dem-bot crowd along with the Southern Clinton-machine and Obama worship voters.

          1. Chris

            Yes and no.

            Was the DNC doing everything they could to make it harder for Bernie? Absolutely.

            Did Bernie make some mistakes and activate a whole bunch of people who were scared about the type of change he represents? Absolutely.

            Bernie made the same mistake the Team Blue No Matter Who people make with respect to minorities. His team assumed all these new voters would naturally accumulate to his side. He also assumed that his message of economic populism would be enough to overcome the fear of change in the over 40 crowd. He was wrong. His brand of government is going to be a hard sell. I think it’s the right direction but it was never going to be an easy path to walk.

            And Bernie wasn’t aggressive enough in the debates and on his channels against people like Bloomberg and Biden. I think he handled Warren well, but how he did it left her voters cold. The good news for all this being if he wins then he will have a clear political mandate and a base of support that will be capable of controlling the party. The bad news is it’s going to be hard to win.

            1. WJ

              “And Bernie wasn’t aggressive enough in the debates and on his channels against people like Bloomberg and Biden.”

              This. The Democratic Party and every one of its candidates–excepting Sanders and Gabbard, who are hated by the rest–are corrupt and, indeed, are fundamentally no better than Trump. Sanders needed to say this. Repeatedly. Instead, he played along with Russiagate, played along with the fantasy that Trump represents some existential threat to the union, etc. etc., and played along with the notion that any one of his Democratic “colleagues” would clearly represent a better choice for the American people than Trump.

              This *weakened* his message and made it *harder* for low information voters to recognize that he represents–or claims to represent–a politics that is *radically* different from every other Democratic candidate.

              Just my opinion.

              1. Monty

                Agree wholeheartedly.

                I am not left or right I am anti-this-establishment, in all its forms.

              2. Yves Smith Post author

                I don’t agree. You need to win a majority to win elections. Sadly a majority of Dems and even independents believe this Russiagate claptrap. The press and Dems have been hammering on this since 2016 and propaganda works.

                All accepting it did was annoy the more clued-in members of Sanders’ base.

                Disputing it would have facilitated everyone saying he was at best a CT monger (“How can he possibly dispute the findings of America’s sanctified intel agencies, particularly since he sits on none of the relevant committees and didn’t see what they had?”) or worst, proof that he is in Russia’s pocket.

              3. jrs

                I would respect him less if he went soft Trump, oh heck so would the rest of the CA that voted for him strongly probably. Obama did not challenge our right to set clean air standards, we know the deal. President Trump thinks he is at war with states that didn’t vote for him. Sanders didn’t apologize for Trump or anything else.

            2. Oh

              Genius Monday Morning QB’s who blame the victim from the armchair are not of any use to anyone.

      2. jonboinAR

        I became convinced the other night, so take it for what it’s worth, that the Dem establishment so skillfully orchestrated its Bernie take-down for reasons other than thinking that Biden was the more viable candidate against Trump. I didn’t know what it was, but Yves or someone with her sort of credibility articulated: (more or less) It’s to prevent Bernie and his “Bros” from taking over the Democratic Party. That’s top priority for them. I can only guess this to be the truth because it rings really true to me. Clearly, though, it’s not because anyone who’s less demential than Biden thinks he has any chance of being the more viable nominee. So, IOW, for the democrat establishment, knocking Bernie out “trumps” knocking Trump out. I presume that would be because that way their rice-bowls remain intact.

      3. Oh

        They dare not leave senile, dementia ridden JB alone at home. He might wander off somewhere and won’t return home. Maybe that’s the best we can hope for.

      4. Oregoncharles

        Remember Wilson? His wife ran the government for – a couple of years? And Reagan: RE-ELECTED with dementia. I saw him forget where he was on the debate stage and wander off verbally – people loved it.

        Reagan wasn’t running the country; it’s a good question who was (the CIA chief, with mob connections?) So someone like that makes a good cat’s-paw figurehead. So who would be running Old Joe?

        We might as well be prepared. But actually, I think the Dems are sticking tothe deal: taking turns, two full terms at a time.

    2. OIFVet

      I’m Joe Biden, and I forgot this message. I don’t care how mean it might be to be talking about this. As little as I care about offending liberals, Trump cares even less and and is a master at driving the message home in a way that delights his base. Liberals have been telling me I’m a mean ahole to be dwelling on what they say is a “speech impediment,” and I reply by asking them whether Trump will care.

      1. inode_buddha

        Maybe you should tell them they shouldn’t harp on Sanders stents. Or his age. Because, you know, hypocrisy.

        1. OIFVet

          But hypocrisy is such an integral part of who they are, they would be lost without it.

        2. pebird

          Right, incoherence vs standard medical procedure = hypocrisy. Neoliberal “thinking”.

          1. inode_buddha

            No, the hypocrisy is when the Establishment “liberals” have a problem with Sander’s age and his stents, but say nothing about Biden and in fact promote him.

            1. The Rev Kev

              Still, it is sad to think that at the moment the two main challengers that are about to face off with each other are two old, white men in their 70s who will be facing off against – another old, white man in his 70s.

              And to think that John F. Kennedy became President at only 44.

              1. Deschain

                One of the big problems the progressives have is that there just aren’t really any standard bearers between the ages of 30 and 70. The Clintons drove them all out of the party. AOC will get there eventually (if she can survive the inevitable purge in the event Biden actually becomes President) but she’s not there yet.

                1. Chris

                  Yep. Clinton world murdered all the nascent progressives in the late 80’s, 90’s, and 00’s. Bernie is one of the few who kept fighting the wave of Gordon Gecko wannabes in the Democrat party. We’ll see some new blood coming soon but it will be a generation before there’s enough of them to shift the Overton window back from the brink.

              2. Phacops

                I come back to the question of who will demonstrate to the young that government can work for all people? I think that Bernie will boost that engagement and possibly encourage them.

                Biden, OTOH, will demonstrate once again that government only works for the greedy, wealthy, and sociopathic.

                I would rather have an old Bernie than any but the young progressives. Actually I hope to live long enough to see A O-C as our first woman president.

              3. Eclair

                Yes, Rev, it is sad. And, I am older than the trio.

                The term, sclerotic, comes to mind. Like my aging blood vessels, our political systems have stiffened and become clogged, with fewer life-renewing oxygenated ideas and programs running through them .

                I clicked on the Vice link, Climate Change Will Turn These Common Foods Toxic (there go the apples!) and ended up reading another long long Vice article: The Collapse of Civilization May Have Already Begun.

                The essay ends with: “Most of all, the emerging science of collapse suggests that civilization in its current form, premised on endless growth and massive inequalities, is unlikely to survive this century. It will either evolve into or be succeeded by a new configuration, perhaps an “ecological civilization”, premised on a fundamentally new relationship with the Earth and all its inhabitants—or it will, whether slowly or more abruptly, regress and contract.”

                I’m in Seattle, epicenter of the nation’s growing Covid-19 pandemic. Sick with what I am 99% sure is my annual common head cold, but self-quarantined because I don’t want to spread even relatively benign viruses and I am in that high mortality rate age group for Covid-19. So, no social interactions, meetings, book groups, dancing. A little bit of social breakdown going on. Nothing to do but read and bake bread.

                And think that if I were a 20-something, I would be furious (by an order of magnitude more so than I am at almost-80.) These old people simply have no skin in the game. Most will be dead, or mentally dead, in a decade, when the shi*t really starts to hit the fan. Sanders is an exception …. but even he won’t be around for long and he truly believes in reform. That it is enough to ream out the clogged and stiffened arteries and put in place a stent or two. And if I were 20, I too, would have given up on the ballot box.

                1. Rhondda

                  Reading and baking bread sounds like just the thing. Everyone around here is sick with, hopefully, just-the-regular flu – except me (knock on Bartonwood) so I am making a giant pot of chicken soup and doling out the C. If you were closer, I’d put some on your doorstep. Instead, from afar, I’ll wish you a brief bout. Take care, Eclair. Be well!

                2. jrs

                  Is civilization really premised on endless growth or as that just actually existing capitalism?

                  1. Eclair

                    The communist USSR contributed its bit to environmental degradation and pollution, by ramping up industry and extractivism.

                  2. notabanktoadie

                    Usury-based finance REQUIRES growth – to pay the interest.

                    Otoh, equity-based finance ALLOWS but does not require growth.

                    But why should those with equity share it when a government privileged usury cartel allows them to use that equity to obtain what is then, in essence, the public’s credit but for private gain?

                3. Oregoncharles

                  And if you’re having trouble breathing, call an ambulance.

                  Good luck, get well.

                4. AdamK

                  Thanks for your comment. I’m almost 60, and I cannot comprehend the audacious boomers participation and weighing in these elections, and I’m the youngest of the boomers. Haven’t we destroyed enough? Can’t we just leave things to the young to fix and find their own solutions. Obviously we are not going to be around to pay the price. It is time for boomers with all their ideology and market world view to retire and encourage the younger generations to take responsibility for their own future, cause we know nothing, and we certainly don’t know how to get us out from the mess we put the world in. Sanders is the only one who suggests an alternative approach, all the rest, the same old sh*t. So maybe, just maybe we should take this rout and try it.

              1. WobblyTelomeres

                I was riding a motorcycle across Oklahoma years ago and started smelling an awful stench. A few miles on and it just got worse. I then noticed what looked like a cluster of mounds, maybe 50 feet tall. A bit further, and I realized it was a vast feedlot, with guys on bulldozers tending to the waste.

                1. Off The Street

                  Drive north past Bakersfield around Coalinga on Interstate 5 and when the wind is right you get the best of both worlds. There is a big feedlot and some oilfields. Do it during an overcast winter day so you get to see the dun-colored brown landscape merging into the dull brownish sky. Or break with tradition and drive at night with the windows down.

      2. Katniss Everdeen

        Go Glenn Greenwald!

        Can’t you just picture a debate between Trump and biden–biden shouting word salad gibberish while jabbing his finger and interrupting himself repeatedly with “Look!” while Trump looks on amused. When it’s Trump’s turn to “respond,” he mugs for the camera and does his “WTF” face. Over and over again.

        And not only will Trump hammer biden’s dementia home, Carlson, Hannity and Ingraham will make it their own personal Russia! Russia! Russia! and plenty of people will be listening.

        Fox News achieved its highest ratings in its 24-year history, according to Nielsen Media Research, averaging 3.5 million total viewers in prime time during the month of February.

        Sean Hannity’s, Tucker Carlson’s and Laura Ingraham’s programs were the top shows in cable news. Each of these hosts’ shows hit all-time highs for a month.

        Hannity finished with 4.3 million total viewers, while Carlson was second with 4.115 million and Ingraham third with 3.6 million. Ingraham’s average audience marked a record for a female cable news host.

        If it was anyone other than the dem establishment, I’d say forewarned is forearmed but…’s the dem establishment.

        1. OIFVet

          Plus, when Fox News can content itself with simply telling the truth about the candidate’s record, and not lie about it, you know it’s bad. And Biden’s record is appalling, if you are a “deplorable ” struggling to survive. I can see Trump taking the opportunity to run to the left of Biden on SS, Medicare, etc. That level bad. Yet you have delusional liberals, talking out the both sides of their mouths as usual, simultaneously claiming that Sanders’ stand on M4A is too extreme for even the base (Bezos Post’s exit polling notwithstanding) much less the swing vote, yet claiming that Biden will appeal to the independents who struggle with the same problems as the dem base by promising them to fix ACA. I understand the establishment drinking their own koolaid, but what’s the rank and file liberals’ excuse? The dem liberal base is hopeless.

          1. John Steinbach

            Just top of my head:
            Anita Hill, MBNA bankruptcy bill, NAFTA, WTO, China Most Favored Trading, busing (Biden is essentially the last of the “Dixiecrats”), Iraq 1, Iraq2, Patriot Act, Ukraine, Lybia, Fracking, mass incarceration, First clean, articulate.. (about Obama), plagiarism, lying about involvement in Civil Rights Movement, Burisma, “Gaffes”, 2008 bank bailout, revoking Glass Stegal…. Lots more. Trump will win by running to Biden’s left.

            1. Grant

              Incentivizing prison privatizations, working to undermine the “reasonable pricing” rule that Bernie tried to reinstate in the early 2000’s (after Clinton, the Republicans and the right gutted it), working with Strong Thurmond to push for anti-drug policies that were even harsher than Reagan called for, being one of the architects of the state’s civil asset forfeiture policies, being openly corrupt and promising to not change anything to donors, struggling to articulate himself, his family’s long standing issues with corruption, pushing to cut Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security for decades, and on. What a train wreck that party is. If you told me in 2016 that in four years time they would nominate Biden, I would say you were out of your mind. But they have, and he might be a worse candidate than Clinton was.

              1. pretzelattack

                helping cover up the october surprise when congress finally got around to “investigating” it long years later.

        2. John A

          Maybe Biden will challenge Trump to push-ups there and then. After calling him fatso, or baldy with the ridiculous syrup.

          1. GF

            Trump will not debate anyone. He knows his actions and speeches can’t stand up to direct sustained scrutiny. Why do you think there are no more White House press briefings and he is constantly tweeting BS. He doesn’t let a single outrage last more than a few hours before he changes the subject with another tweeted pearl of wisdom.

            1. Yves Smith Post author

              Huh? He debated Hillary and Hillary is way better on her feet than Biden.

              Trump would welcome the opportunity to shellack addled Joe. Joe has Hunter, fondling young girls. the Iraq War, and I am sure the Trump oppo team could find plenty of pre 2016 stuff so Trump is out of the picture.

            2. pretzelattack

              if there is anybody that would be awful at directing sustained scrutiny at anybody, it would be joe biden 2020.

        3. Kurt Sperry

          The FOX numbers are simple math. *All* the major media save FOX are reading from the same DNC-printed script. This is increasingly inescapable. The choice isn’t FOX vs. msnbc, or FOX vs. ABC, or FOX vs. the NYT,or WaPo, or PBS etc. The choice is FOX vs. one giant DNC/Blob media (all alternatives). It’s why I watched FOX Tuesday night instead of Blobvision. It’s more objective and higher quality analysis of the primary simply because they are the only major media today looking at the D primary from a remotely objective perspective. The Blob media are not only overtly partisan Democrat (forced by the Trump phenomenon), they are all from and represent only one faction *within* the party.

          Without FOX News, the US major mediascape would be a complete political monoculture, with no diversity of opinion *at all*.

          1. Tim

            Why isn’t none of the above a solution? I can’t stand CNN since Trump became president and I couldn’t stand Fox when Obama was president.

            Yes they are opposites, but still two sides of the same coin. Throw it in the trash.

        1. James

          Vote for Ol’ What’s His Name 2020. He’s a… uhh… oh never mind, I forgot what I was going to say.

          But seriously, if they go with Biden they need to actively play up the comedic angle. It’s his only chance. Use some political marketing jiu jitsu to try to throw Trump off his game. Not like the big palooka’s particularly nimble on his feet anyway. Hopefully Biden can hold it together slightly better than James Stockdale at least.

    3. CBBB

      I kind of feel that despite the fact that Biden is a very weak candidate, there’s so much anti-Trump hysteria that it’ll drag him across the finish line. I don’t know what the Dems purpose is once Trump is out of office though. No real lasting coalition.

      1. tegnost

        I don’t know what the Dems purpose is once Trump is out of office though. No real lasting coalition.
        They have a lasting coalition with wall st…but since you asked I have a few likely’s

        war in general,war with russia especially, more homeless people, skyrocketing insurance premiums and work camps for student loan defaulters, bargain away social security and hand the money to wall st, ISDS, facial recognition and tracking, subsidies for self driving infra (it’ll work great on dedicated roadways) toll roads, two tiered (actually more likely multiple tiers demonstrating how valuable a human you are) access to public goods, public goods that don’t explicitly benefit bezos/brin/jobs/zuck sold into the private market, government contracts for google/facebook/telecoms feeding the NSA, bezos/musk get the pentagon and the post office, and or nasa. MMT for me, a couple of bootstraps for thee, and lastly making it legal to bribe your kids way into the ivy. That kind of thing…

        1. CBBB

          Yeah, most of that is right. Biden will be a total non-entity, whoever he picks as VP, advisors, and important cabinet positions will run the show. I guess another authoritarian Republican takes over in 2024 and we repeat the cycle of “We have to take back the White House Vote Blue No Matter Who!”

          1. Mike

            Won’t get that far- the elites and “creative entrepreneurs” are running out of profit room, and they desperately want to enforce the authoritarian plans they have cooked up over the last 60 years. Got rid of the Kennedys, King, Black Panthers, etc, etc. by taking their time and loading up the propaganda guns. Now is their time to strike, and popular support, voting, and demonstrations be damned – that’s why we have a brainwashed military and police forces. What have we to counteract that? Where’s the preparation for reaction?

            Time is running out, and it is awfully sad that Bernie, and, most importantly, the movement behind Bernie, does not realize the diminishing window of action. True independent politics never did start within the Democratic Party, and no platform for real change can occur unless the threats against it are honestly aired, evidence open, the public aware. None of that is operable now to the degree where an open cultural and political revolution is possible, and Democrats are the first line of establishment defense – the choices are terribly worse after this.

          2. Tim

            Is it not a safe assumption at this point that Kamala Harris is his VP pick? She met with him while he was in Cali, and she checks the idpol boxes to complement his old-white-guyness perfectly.

      2. a different chris

        I believe that too. Trump is a terrible candidate, the question being if he’s ever going to be able to pivot from pleasing his base. Which is 35%. You get one vote, no matter how many MAGA hats you own, and if you are annoying enough (like the mythical Bernie Bro but real) you can probably “charm” a neighbor or two to go out and vote against whatever you are for.

        Remember it is always a referendum on the incumbent. All Biden’s team has to do (and this is the Democrats so it is no sure thing) is keep the spotlight on Trump.

        Either way the American Slide will continue unabated. Sanders and Warren* have the ideas that we need but even if one of them became President I’m not sure the institutional resistance would not be just too much. Lots of happy rich people in 3rd world countries, our rich won’t have the slightest problem with the US to continue becoming one.

        1) yes I am suspicious of Warren too
        2) even taking her plans at face value – shows she doesn’t know how to get things done. If you want somebody to do a half-a$$ed job of something whilst surfing the Internet on, give them a 40 page plan to follow exactly. And that’s if your plan would actually work without changes, which is a laughable level of stupid overconfidence. If you want something actually done well, give them a paragraph of intent and let them work out how to do it.

        1. Oh

          Obama was the master of the half a$$ed attempts to solve any problem. Noe JB will follow the same playbook.

        2. Rostale

          “If you want something actually done well, give them a paragraph of intent and let them work out how to do it.”

          Respecting the intelligence and initiative of others goes against the PMC “meritocratic” religion

      3. lordkoos

        I don’t think Trump hysteria will rule the election. I think it more likely that he beats Biden like a rug. Joe is even less appealing that Hillary was.

        1. urblintz

          yup. there’s no way dementia joe gets elected. and I can not believe people don’t see through Trump’s stated preference for Bernie – what BS. and please no one suggest that Trump’s too stupid to play a complicated game. It’s not complicated, it’s obvious… he knows he will beat Biden and he knows pushing Bernie will push those with TDS to vote Biden without any consideration for the demented fraud (Biden not Trump) they are voting for.

        2. CBBB

          I don’t know there was a massive surge in voter turnout in Virginia for Joe Biden. Seems like the Dems are hyper energized to dump Trump. Hillary only lost by razor thin margins, would just take an uptick in turnout to pull Biden through

      4. Monty

        Maybe that can drag him across the finish line of the primary. He will be dead meat in the general election. Generally speaking, American’s love Trump. Search “Trump 2020” on amazon and see the people catering to this enthusiasm.

        The plan is: lose with Biden, blame Bernie and Russia, enjoy capital gains.

      5. Skip Intro

        If Biden wins, it will be a replay of 2016, but without the idol appeal to women… Trump may win even more electors. The Trump hatred of which you speak is confined to your Acela corridor, the woke west coast, and the MSNBC green room.

      6. Yves Smith Post author

        No, a political expert pointed out average take home pay is up $3000 under Trump. That is HUGE.

        Mainly due to increased hours, a little to the tax cut.

        Point is most people have benefitted economically under Trump, not just stock owners. That matters a ton at voting time.

        1. Massinissa

          “No, a political expert pointed out average take home pay is up $3000 under Trump.”

          May I ask, how did that happen?

          1. Yves Smith Post author

            Can you not read? I told you why. Mainly more hours. Huge numbers of Americans work at part time jobs, even if they cobble together enough hours to add up to full time.

            1. Oregoncharles

              Might they be tired of working such long hours? It wasn’t supposed to work that way. Automation, you know.

            2. Massinissa

              My misunderstanding was that I didn’t understand where the extra hours came from, which you answered for me when you elaborated in your reply that it was from people working two jobs.

              I just couldn’t tell where all the extra hours came from from your first comment, but your reply makes it much more clear. I probably should have tried to be more clear what I was specifically asking.

    4. Lou Anton

      Leaning in on dementia seems like a bad idea and very much opens Sanders up to being labeled as Trump-like. And Biden’s success on Tuesday shows how many voters are of the anyone-but-Trump mindset. My hope: get Biden pissed off or tongue-tied on where he stands on, well, every issue, and his cognitive weakness will be exposed.

      Bloomberg got exposed as an empty suit. Biden can be exposed as well past political usefulness.

      1. CBBB

        Yeah let Biden make a fool of himself. That’s the better way and hammer him about medicare and social security cuts, NAFTA, and (to a lesser extent because I honestly think a lot of people don’t care too much) his horrible foreign policy.
        Emphasis how Biden will turn off Midwestern voters because he supports all the same things Hillary did.

      2. Katniss Everdeen

        How hard do you really have to “lean on it” when it’s so in your face?

        Since Super Tuesday, msnbs talking heads have commented on how “remarkable” it is that biden never even showed up in many of the states he won. Maybe nowhere near as “remarkable” as it was fortuitous.

        As the spotlight zeroes in on biden, the “remarkable” thing will be that anyone with two functioning neurons to rub together fails to notice. But not being a professional campaign operative, I have no idea how DR. jill biden’s advice to “Hold your nose and vote for my husband” will resonate with the coveted, highly educated suburban soccer moms.

        1. OIFVet

          Lol, if I’m Trump, I play that Jill Biden pitch nonstop. What a ringing endorsement! Just to have fun with it, follow up with that scene from whatever that Ben Stiller movie was, where the object of his unwelcomed advances puts her hand to her mouth and says, “I just threw up in my mouth a little.”

          1. Katniss Everdeen

            Hopefully DR. jill and sister valerie will stay close enough to make sure joe can always find his nose.

            But seriously, what are the implications of all this emphasis on dementia when the inevitable demands for “medical records” are made? There are cognitive skills and other diagnostic tests and scans used to diagnose dementia and the public knows it, not to mention all the armchair diagnosticians who relentlessly cite DSM-5 in assigning all manner of mental maladies to Trump.

            biden is inordinately fond of challenging people to push-up contests as a demonstration of his physical prowess. Will he, in a foggy moment, challenge his detractors to bring on the PET scan? I wonder who’ll have the privilege of “walking” THAT one back.

            1. Oh

              JB will keep confusing his wife with his sister and vice versa Let the fun begin! But, but they switched on me again!

      3. jefemt

        Biden camp better start Joe micro-dosing. Pronto. Perhaps with some Bernie Kool-Aid?!

        Dementia, and the Burisma cloud. Not to mention voting record and slime.

      4. Stadist

        Still would be better to go through the Dementia argument now. Would Trump be merciful and ignore the Dementia argument? Trump will play vicious, anything he can come up with, he will strike with. It’s gloves off against Trump. at 38:30 and onwards 1 minute. Trump is already lashing out at the dementia.

        1. Katniss Everdeen

          Oh, it will be gone through. Tucker Carlson last night:

          “As a smart friend said last night, ‘joe biden has spent his entire life trying to succeed in presidential politics. Now he has. Too bad he’s not there to enjoy it.’ “

          Buckle up.

          1. KLG

            From the friend of a friend to whom I sent the Tucker Carlson video: “I’m Joe Biden, and I’m the only one who can beat Ronald Reagan!”

        2. David Carl Grimes

          Trump is pretty lucid here. And he/s running to the left of Biden on foreign policy! “America can”t be policeman to the world. America can”t bring democracy to countries that sometimes don”t want it.”

        3. Yves Smith Post author

          No, Sanders absolutely cannot make that argument. Are you out of your mind?

          First, he is not an MD. Asserting that Biden has dementia is an unsubstantiated smear. No one has formally diagnosed Biden with dementia. And it is a violation of medical ethics to diagnose someone you have not examined.

          Second, it ALSO opens up Biden coming back and saying Sanders had a heart attack, which is an exaggeration but close enough that no one will see that as wrong. “See, your health is fucked up too! Nenner neener!”

          He has to demonstrate it by coming after Biden so that he goes on tilt more than once in a debate. Biden managed to get away with the meltdown on his e-mail address in one debate, so it has to be recurrent to stick.

      5. marieann

        ” opens Sanders up to being labeled as Trump-like”
        This was also my thought…..I am 70 and getting forgetful,not nearly as bad as Joe, but I know how it feels not to not be able to find the word and I find people sympathize with me try to help.

        I mentioned to my husband this morning and that I felt sorry for him and why on earth would his family allow this to happen…they should be looking out for him.

        Of course I am not trying to get elected for anything.

        1. Pat

          Here’s an answer for you. If Joe doesn’t have some connections with power, most of his family will not be able to make a living.
          His son and his brother have traded on his connected state for decades. I’m not sure why his wife isn’t putting her foot down, but there is no telling how much their nest egg was depleated by Beau’s medical care and Hunter’s legal problems. They may need a few book deals as well.

          1. inode_buddha

            Here’s an answer for you. If Joe doesn’t have some connections with power, most of his family will not be able to make a living.

            Oh, whatever will they do? Its not like they’ll have to get jobs or something, is it?

            Gah. *every* single “deplorable” goes through this and survives, but these people are too special for that…

    5. CBBB

      Don’t go after the dementia – Sanders is old too and has had a heart attack. Biden can be attacked on his eagerness to cut social security, the Iraq War, his enthusiastic support for NAFTA and TPP, – these are all things that make him seem like he might not be able to get people out to vote for him in Number and hurt his electability argument. Going after Biden’s dementia directly will backfire. Trump can do it because he’s Trump but it won’t work for Bernie.

      1. Brooklin Bridge

        Agree, too underhanded for Bernie, the “Biden and I are friends” gentle man from Vermont. He would start looking like Warren, the don’t turn your back to her candidate.

        But it nevertheless should be nailed to the wall for all to see by as many people as possible other than Sanders. Either that, or Bernie has to come up with a Regan like line such as, “I refuse to take advantage of someone who doesn’t know for certain where he is and what we are talking about.”

      2. Spring Texan

        Yes, agree, let Trump go after the dementia and try to arrange it so Biden has to actually do campaign events and debates – but I’m worried the DNC might figure out a way to cancel more debates –

      3. Pat

        According to an UES liberal I heard this morning Bernie has been brutally attacking Biden the entire campaign.

        IOW he will be accused of being underhanded and nasty regardless.

        1. foghorn longhorn

          And hilldog will be cackling russiarussiarussia nonstop the rest of the primary season.

          Wonder where bildo is hanging out these days?
          Probably as far away from that b as he can get

    6. dcblogger

      no, I don’t think he should. I think he could continue to hammer away on Social Security.

    7. Glen

      I support Bernie because he backs the policies required to fix our country. Biden does not. That’s just facts, and doesn’t even factor in how much Trump is going to destroy Biden in the general.

      The Dems could have been pushing an M4A bill out of Congress and did not. So the Dem party has no interest in enact the policies required to fix our country. So the Dems are going to lose all of my support including down ballot without Bernie, and I will work to get Dems out of office.

      And yes, I am a Boomer, and a fifty year Dem voter (except Obama in 2012, I could not support how he bailed out the crooks and dumped on the working and middle class.)

  3. The Rev Kev

    “Aspiring terrorists are in every Iowa school, surveillance companies warn”

    And when they grow up, they get put in charge of voting for the Iowa Democratic Party.

    P.S. That bonus from Guurst – where it says “Seht Ihr, was ich sehe?”, that translates to “Do you see what I see?”

    1. MLTPB

      Do they also caution not to shake hands with interfering Russians?

      Dont hug them either. Wash hands immediately, and isolate yourself.


    2. Olga

      That duckie feeding fish must be the best thing I’ve seen in a long time. Nice to know generosity and the spirit of sharing can prevail in the animal kingdom.

      1. xkeyscored

        I was about to say much the same thing. A wonderful little video to show those who claim animals never help each other let alone other species, often as justification for some neoliberal garbage or other.

        1. MLTPB

          Animals helping or not helping each other…

          They do or don’t do, without thinking about it, those averse to anthropo projecting might say.

            1. MLTPB

              That’s true, though some informative posters here, I have good reasons to believe, think before commenting.

              They inspire us, or me.

    3. Gary

      I believe there truly are aspiring terrorists in every school across the country. They just aren’t looking to join ISIS but some flavor of nationalist, white supremist group or Christian end times sect.

  4. John

    Tulsi so frightens the DNC that they must change the rules to keep her out of the debate?

    1. John

      She can’t be allowed on the stage with only the 3 of them in total.

      The DNC knows the damage she would do to Biden, their “front runner”.

      Might leave only Sanders standing.

      The elites have spoken.

    2. The Rev Kev

      Bernie should really put out a strong defense of Tulsi here. That would put the Democrats on the spot having to justify their changing the rules in public and put them on the backfoot. He could start of by saying “Tulsi is a good friend of mine. I like her very much. She’s a very decent human being.” instead of saying the same for his political enemy Joe.

      Apart from that, if Bernie is not prepared to defend other Candidates being cheated by the Democrats, then why should others try and defend Bernie when the Democrats turn around and cheat him because you know that it is coming. I cannot for the life of me work out if Bernie sometimes has crap political instincts or whether he has a crap team of political advisors. Not good either way.

      1. PlutoniumKun

        It is in Bernies interest to keep Tulsi in the game as long as possible. Bernie is in an impossible situation regarding attacking Bidens weak points – it would be much more effective if he had a deniable attack dog like Tulsi to do the work for him, just as Warren did him a favour by devouring Bloomberg. Progressives lack the good guy/bad guy dynamic to allow them to attack the establishment from every angle. Sanders is the perfect gentleman, Tulsi is the perfect pit bull. Sanders needs her back in the game.

        1. WJ

          If having Tulsi at future debates is clearly in Sanders’ interest, then why is he not publicly pushing for her rightful inclusion? The DNC changed the rules to allow Bloomberg to debate; then they change the rules, again, to disallow Tulsi. Make the DNC have to defend the decision. Maybe he will do this. I hope he does. But supposing he does not, why not?

          One might think that Sanders is more concerned about being able to reestablish a false collegiality with establishment Democrats after he loses the nomination than he is about finding a way to win the nomination. One might think that Tulsi Gabbard’s clear anti-imperialism is too much for Sanders to get behind, for one reason or another…

          One *might* think this…

          1. pjay

            Yes. One *might*.

            One might also make an argument that Tulsi sacrificed a promising future in the Democratic party in 2016 by her very public defense of Bernie from Clintonista sabotage. It would be nice to see him defend her.

          2. Deltron

            I think the challenge is Tulsi voluntarily declined to participate in a debate in December “for a number of reasons.” Presumably, the basis for those reasons has not changed. The DNC will argue she has pissed in the punch bowl so they’re not going to bring a malcontent back into the fold. It may be unjustified, but she has a toxic reputation among Dem voters that Bernie is trying to attract to his campaign. Bernie has to pick and choose his battles, so he has to ask himself whether it’s worthwhile to spend political capital defending Tulsi at this juncture, particularly given that it will not result in Tulsi making it back on the debate stage (he doesn’t have a hand on the DNC puppet strings). If he wins the presidency, I’m sure he’ll have opportunities for Tulsi if she would like one.

            1. WJ

              I fundamentally disagree with this. My view is that Sanders would be doing much, much better were he willing to unleash truth bombs against the entire DNC edifice and its corrupt “candidates”–including his “good friend” Joe Biden–and its cynical propaganda–including and especially its Russiaphobia.

              Sanders stated, publicly, that Joe Biden was *not* corrupt. How is that working out for him?

              1. Deltron

                Doing much better with whom? The Dem voters that make it to the booths for the primary? I just don’t think this is the juncture for such tactics. You may disagree, but I think Bernie is in a very good position to win the election. The establishment Dems played their best cards going into Super Tuesday. If Biden doesn’t win Michigan, he will find himself in trouble. Bernie is starting to pick up voters from Warren, Buttigieg, and Klobuchar, now isn’t the time to start throwing big truthbombs. That’s not how Bernie made it this far. He needs to put the bullseye directly on Joe Biden’s record. Winning is the goal, then once in office, he can start correcting the narratives and dropping truthbombs.

      2. pretzelattack

        instead he is apparently upbraiding his supporters who have been mean to warren, according to an article on the hill (a venue i increasingly distrust except for rising).

    3. Jessica

      Definitely. Tulsi would take Biden’s support for multiple US wars and do to him what she did to Kamala Harris and what Warren did to Bloomberg.

    1. Big River Bandido

      I relish the clarity of this fight. This country needs Sanders and his reforms desperately. I look forward to the American people seeing the stark choice in front of us.

      1. CBBB

        I don’t know if they will have a chance. The next debate isn’t until after the next primary – Sanders is still reeling from the surprise Biden surge and I don’t see how he makes it up. He ran the wrong campaign – youth-oriented, running as the insurgent assuming he was going to get this massive turn out of new voters that never materialized. He needed to run the campaign that made him more palatable to normies.
        The Biden Presidency is just going to put the acceleration on going full third-world country.

        1. Brooklin Bridge

          Super Tuesday (not to mention SC) was more rigged than all the tall ships and all the tall tales that ever went to sea. Not much Sanders can do about crooked software sloshing around on crooked machines following instructions from the crooked DNC.

        2. Deltron

          I question whether the Super Tuesday boost for Biden is sustainable. Buttigieg and Klobuchar dropped out, endorsed Biden, and then the cable news networks ran a Biden informercial for two days leading into Tuesday. A lot of chips were pushed in to get that kind of juice. Meanwhile, in the aftermath, Bernie and Biden are neck & neck in delegates, and a number of Biden-friendly Southeast states are off the board for him (VA, AR, AL, NC, OK, TN, TX). Michigan is the big prize on March 10, and I expect WA to go in Bernie’s favor. Then we have the March 15th debate, which is when Bernie can really flip the tables.

        3. skippy

          Gresham’s law of politics as it were, best bit is the resulting effects on society at large, which is just a feed back loop to the politicians engaging in it and then ends up as confirmation bias.

          Next thing you know Trump is your President.

      2. jef

        This election should make it crystal clear that the “race”, the “fight” is not about Bern vs Bid, Dem vs Rep, L vs R, it is about the wealthy represented by both parties and 100s of billion$ vs the 99% without any representation. Allowing Bernie in means giving the 99% representation which can not be allowed.

        In-between are the wana be 1% who are conflicted. They want to have Dem values but they also want nothing to get in the way of them getting rich.

        When/if the 99% realise they have no representation they might just demand it. The sooner we call it what it is the more likely we are to generate a real movement.

        1. lordkoos

          I think it’s more like the conflicted 10% – the yuppie class and many boomers seem to be all in on Biden.

          1. jef

            What I meant was they wish to be the 1% and I feel like this is a large segment, perhaps 20%+. You are right the boomers are are all in because they still believe that the game being played is Dem vs Rep.

                1. jef

                  Please both of you … say what you mean …and mean what you say.

                  Now more than ever we need to be clear for those seeking answers.

  5. Expat2Uruguay

    Is electronic tabulation of votes used for elections in Uruguay? No, according to this link contained within the linked article regarding exit poll results versus election results in South Carolina.
    I’ve often wondered this, but didn’t really know how to find the information. Apparently, we’re the only country in South America to do so.

    1. Expat2Uruguay

      further detail: “Each polling station conducts a scrutiny by hand and produces an electoral certificate that they provide to the departmental electoral office, which is then responsible for transmitting the results to the Electoral Court by inputting data in a central system to calculate results “

      1. cgregory

        Which is how Karl Rove got Ohio for Bush in 2004 and was going to deliver to Romney in 20012– but got foiled in that latter attempt by a couple of lawyers who remembered….

        1. Big River Bandido

          Lol. The Kerry-Ohio nonsense again.

          No Democrat wins Ohio while losing Iowa. You have to go back 44 years to find a case where that happened, and Iowa politics changed a lot in the 80s. And it strains credulity to believe that an elite Massachusetts neoliberal with zero charisma would win either state.

  6. Tvc15

    Thank you Yves and furzy for the TDMS Research link regarding exit polling discrepancies that, drum roll please…benefited Biden, and ta-da his “miraculous” resurgence. As I and a few others commented yesterday in Water Cooler and Links, we should NOT trust the electronic voting machine results. TDMS also reported the MA exit poll vs reported vote count and the Biden bump is even more egregious than SC. “Presidential candidates Biden’s and Bloomberg’s vote counts exhibited the largest disparity from the exit poll projections. Biden’s unobservable computer-generated vote totals represented a 15.7% increase of his projected exit poll share.”

    Their cheating tells are a refusal to not use publicly observable hand-counted paper ballots and of course the always reliable voter suppression in minority areas. My old hometown Houston had multiple examples.

    1. John

      Paper ballots. Hand counted in public.

      Or we have to assume that every election is stolen.

      1. jashley

        The most amazing standard belief seems to be that the polling (other than the election itself) is beyond gaming of any type.
        This is so widespread among any who know they were shafted by one of the two parties as to make the election process itself seem superflous.

        running low on tin-foil it seems.

        1. Corona Halo

          “running low on tin-foil it seems.”

          Coronavirus strikes again on the supply chains

          1. Wukchumni

            Aluminum in metal form was once quite rare, and in foil form is incredibly useful for cooking.

            There’s no substitute for it, and not as if you’re going make any. It’s an item i’d consider hoarding, if I was worried about industries shutting down-as they are presently.

            …and a Reynolds Wrap toque makes a bold fashion statement

    2. Eduardo

      From footnote [1]: “As this first published exit poll was subsequently adjusted towards conformity with the final computerized vote count, the currently published exit poll differs from the results above.”

      So the current exit poll results more closely match the computerized vote count.

      It would be nice to know more about those adjustments in the exit poll results.

      1. Romancing The Loan

        As much as this fits with my preconceived beliefs I would like to see a screenshot of the earlier exit poll results from CNN, or something to back up that they were changed.

    3. Carla

      Friend who knows I don’t do Facebook just emailed me the following, which is going around on there:

      New DNC motto: We decide, so you don’t have to!

      Also, apparently there’s now a hashtag: #ThisIsNOTWhatDemocracyLooksLike

    4. WJ

      If they were planning to rig select Super Tuesday states in advance, it would only make sense to have all the Party-controlled “moderates” drop out of the race and endorse Biden just before the election. This enables the narrative that all the “moderate” voters–who would have voted Buttigieg, Klobuchar–consolidated their support around Biden, allowing him to outperform most recent polls in a few states by close to 20%, etc. Once that narrative is in place and has been sold to the corporate media, then you don’t need to worry about after the fact exit poll discrepancies, as they won’t be reported by CNN or the Times and so can safely be dismissed as “conspiracy theories” pushed by “BernieBros”–or, better yet, “Russians!”– on twitter.

      One does wonder, though, what would happen if Sanders somehow outperformed the most recent polls in several states by between 10 to 20%, while also significantly outperforming the exit poll data retrieved from those states…..This, of course, just sounds like sour grapes, and perhaps it is.

      I note only that the more strongly one feels the psychological pressure to unquestionably assume the legitimacy of our “democratic” elections, the less likely one is to seriously entertain notions of widespread electoral fraud.

      But what is the basis of our belief in the legitimacy of our elections? It certainly can’t be evidential.

      1. Oh

        Just like 9/11 we only have the government’s account describing who did it. No independent investigation of any sort.

  7. Clive

    To Chuck L

    I’m not sure if this will help, and it is straight out of Woo Woo Land, but sometimes I get a sort-of psychic “hit” from animals, in person (as it were) but also just from pictures. I got one such notion through the ethereal waves from your dear Jolie. She said “I’m sorry I have to leave you”. And she really was.

    1. HB

      It sounds as though you gave Jolie a wonderful life, Chuck. That is all we can do. I hope that my sweet Reagan was there to greet her at the bridge. It’s so nice of Yves to lets us give them tributes here.

    2. aletheia33

      this (clive’s) is my impression also. what a beautiful soul she has. i am very sorry for your loss.

      1. newcatty

        To Chuck L., so sorry for your loss of Jolie. Her sweet face and lovely eyes were, indeed, beautiful. I grew up with a similar dog from the age of eight years old to my 18th birthday , when I left my hometown and went ( escaped) to college. She was my dear friend and I could confide and cry to her with no fear of conditional understanding. She was a constant companion and I am grateful for her in my life. So many years ago…Think she waited to go until she knew I had flown the nest.

  8. The Rev Kev

    “Experts confirm human to animal spread of coronavirus”

    This could potentially be bad – for dogs that is. During the pandemic a century ago, some towns in the US suspected dogs of spreading this flu so they were shooting dogs on sight in the streets and families would kill their own dogs rather than take the risk. If there gets to be a high death toll, this might happen in some places once again.

    1. timbers

      My black Labrador Retriever, Rocky, would be a sure target. He says “hi” to everyone and dog, often twice. He charges at them wagging his tail. Fortunately I broke him of jumping up on people. He’v very well behaved now.

    2. MLTPB

      It’s a bit confusing at this time, as far as I know.

      AP has a story about dogs and cats being able to test positive, but not being able to pass it to humans. This may or may not change later.

      We will all get a chance to learn as we move along.

      1. xkeyscored

        Amazon and Alibaba still haven’t rolled out a drone delivery service here, so I’m training my bats to do my shopping and socialising.

  9. timbers


    “Running Joe Biden is like making your dog wear a dress. It may make a nice FB post, but it’s wrong. You can see the confusion in the dog’s eyes. You can see the same thing in Joe Biden’s eyes…’why am I here, what are we talking about””

    If Biden gets the nomination…or if they give it to Hillary again because Biden is the excuse to do that…I’m expecting 4 more years of Trump, and I think the Dem Establishment might be, too.

    1. montanamaven

      Tucker’s “dog in a dress” analogy is best analogy of this election cycle. But even better than the analogy is that Tucker does what Tucker always does. He uses humor and then goes directly to a discussion of policy not personality. Joe just isn’t up for the job and never has been, but his policies are destructive. Tucker asks if we know anybody whos life has been ruined by credit card debt. He goes after the heart of the matter saying that the banks Biden and Obama propped up got 0% interest money while regular people have to borrow at 21% interest. If Bernie would hammer this over and over, Biden would be escorted off the stage.

      1. Olga

        Yes, the dog-in-a-dress quip was the best. TC goes for the jugular, but veiled in humour.
        To timbers’ point on Hillary: she was on NPR recently, and when the interviewer gently proposed that she could be tired, HRC exclaimed no way, she was ready to roar (fight). So yes, that may be the plan: Joe stumbles and excuses himself from the race, with HRC as a ready-made replacement. You’ve seen nothin’ yet!

    2. fresno dan

      March 5, 2020 at 8:18 am

      The dog does what the master wants.
      as well as the canine….

  10. Carla

    Re: Yves’ tweet about Bloomberg purchasing the Treasury seat in Biden’s cabinet:

    There ain’t never gonna BE a Biden cabinet.

    1. Off The Street

      He won’t get that Mellonesque advice to liquidate labor, liquidate capital, liquidate politicians?

      1. KLG

        Matt Stoller calls it “Mellonism” in Golaith, which I am reading now (very highly recommended!). Perfect for then, and its return today.

    2. antidlc

      Maybe, maybe not. But just think of all the anti-Trump ads he could fund. Remember all the Bloomberg ads? His money will now go to fund just as many or more anti-Trump ads.

        1. antidlc

          I think it will go to both

          and then if Biden becomes the nominee, anti-Trump.

  11. Kevin

    not exactly loaded with stats – looks like a company trying to sell fear…how very odd.

  12. The Rev Kev

    “Why Massachusetts Voters Turned Their Backs On Elizabeth Warren”

    I think that Warren’s problem is that when she was hectoring that crowd of her wavering supporters in Detroit, that she got herself upset and started off by talking in Parseltongue to them before she remembered herself.

    1. Drake

      Is that the reason for the sudden popularity of snake emojis on Twitter? I thought they were just describing her personal qualities.

      I’d have happily voted for her if it would have kept her out of Massachusetts a little longer.

    2. Big River Bandido

      The apologist who wrote that article seems *desperate* to spin Warren’s 3rd place showing in her own state as just a knock in the engine, rather than the catastrophe that it is.

      1. pretzelattack

        yeah it was “pragmatic” voters, desperate to beat trump and sanders–oh, voters desperate for centrists, voters who don’t mind dementia in a candidate as long as that candidate isn’t anybody on the left (as viewed though a skewed overton window in the u.s.).

        i guess she’s still reevaluating, haven’t heard anything yet from the warren campaign today.

          1. Deschain

            It will be no matter what. If she had endorsed Monday it would have been from a position of strength. It’s too late now, she has nothing to offer. Her political instincts are atrocious.

            1. Spring Texan

              Actually it would still matter if she did endorse Sanders, to her many followers, but she won’t and they will take that as a signal that Sanders is odious and vote Biden.

              Go read comments over at

              Lots of Warren supporters there and they are saying many of them they won’t vote in the primary or they will vote Biden which is very telling and very heartbreaking.

              1. pretzelattack

                not surprising to me–the last time i visited was right after the culinary union leaders tried to smear sanders in nevada, and a lot of commenters took this as evidence that sanders is a fraud and antiunion. some still seem to blame sanders for clinton losing to trump, not to mention putin.

          2. Hepativore

            My guess is that Warren is going to be endorsing Biden, although it remains a toss-up between her endorsing him and waiting until the last minute by sitting out until it is politically “safe” to endorse anybody. Krystal Ball suggested that the Sanders team talk to Warren to possibly offer her a Vice President pick, but the way that Warren has acted shows that she simply cannot be trusted.

            The thing that worries me is that we might even see Obama swoop in to endorse Biden to further cement the idea of him being the most “electable” candidate in the eyes of upper middle-class, older suburban voters. For some reason, Obama is still the Golden Boy among the wine mom and Whole Foods crowd.

            Still, I am flummoxed as to how blind this demographic seems to be in regards to

            A: Biden cannot remember where or who he is half of the time.
            B: Biden cracks under pressure and somebody like Trump who thrives on conflict would mop the floor with Biden
            C: Even if they feel their own Social Security and Medicare benefits are safe, do they not care that their children and grandchildren are facing a very dire future and never had the same opportunities that they did when they were young? Biden and/or his handlers in the White House would go full-steam-ahead on another Grand Bargain program.
            D. If they want to pride themselves on how “woke” and identitarian they are, they could help elect the first jewish president in America. We have never had one before.

          3. Spring Texan

            It’s sad. She doesn’t really care about progressive policy near so much as about herself.

  13. Samuel Conner

    TC seems to be enjoying this.

    My favorite recent Bidenism is from the last debate, when he was riffing (or intending to riff …. I think) on US government investment in the development of new technologies:

    “DARPA, a special operations … thing”

    The circumstances surrounding the creation of the internet seem to be an especially perilous topic for former D vice presidents now running for President to mention.

  14. David

    For those following the Uber saga in France (or elsewhere) the Cour de Cassation has published its judgement, together with an explanatory note and a press release, all in English here.
    The Cour de Cassation is the highest judicial authority in France on such issues, and no further appeal by Uber is possible. The Court upheld the earlier judgement of the Appeals Court, and briskly dismissed Uber’s arguments (which are set out in detail in the judgement).
    This is a considerable defeat for Uber and must put the viability of their business in France in question. Until now, Uber employees have been classed as self-employed small businessmen (autoentrepreneurs) which gives them a very simple employment and social security status, and makes them responsible for reporting their earnings and paying tax and social security charges. Now they are employees. French employment law is highly complex (the Code du Travail runs to one thousand pages) and the social security system is, even today, generous, and requires substantial contributions of money and time from the employer. There is also a powerful and much-disliked organisation, the URSSAF, which carries out inspections of employers to make sure they are obeying the law. Altogether, not good news for Uber’s profits.
    Of course, as the judgement makes clear, this ruling is only made under French employment law, and takes account of earlier precedents. But I’d be surprised if the law in other western European countries is substantially different.

    1. Clive


      And exactly in line with judgements under English law

      It’s gone as far as the Court of Appeal but Uber are trying their luck at the U.K. Supreme Court. Hope they adopt the same approach as the French equivalent. I can’t really think of any way they won’t.

      Having to treat Uber drivers like employees will similarly trash their business model.

      Pass the popcorn.

    2. vlade

      “not good news for Uber’s profits.” Ubers continues existence is not good news for Uber’s profits, which have yet to materialise.

        1. vlade

          CV19 will hit Uber (and taxis in general), but TBH, I think it’s mostly by there being fewer tourists around. You’re IMO more likely to get infected in a public transport than a taxi, unless the driver’s infected, so call it the same likelyhood.

          But drop in tourism is real – I’m told a lot of planes flying around the world now are half full at best, and flying just to retain the landing spots (IMO where the regulators should promptly suspend the use-it-or-lose-it policy).

          1. David

            It certainly seems as though there’s less tourism, and travel in general, going on. CDG airport was very quiet when I came through a couple of days ago, and there’s a lot of anecdotal evidence of cancellations of flights and hotels. As a quick check I looked at the availability of hotels in Paris this weekend on, and it’s much better than usual. There were over 2000 with vacancies, and there wasn’t the usual warning about the need to book quickly.
            For what it’s worth, my observation is that US tourists (by far the largest group to visit Paris) frequently use Uber, because they know the application and can use it in English, which is less hassle than finding a taxi rank and trying to explain to the driver where they want to go. I suspect that as a whole, Uber is extremely tourist-dependent in Europe.

      1. Arizona Slim

        Summarizing Hubert Horan’s excellent article series on Naked Capitalism:

        Uber will never turn a profit. And there’s no pathway to profitability.

      2. David

        And probably never will. Read “not good news for any lingering fantasies that anyone may have that Uber will one day make a profit.”

    3. xkeyscored

      Skimming rapidly through the press release and explanation, it looks as though this judgment takes effect immediately, as this was the legal position all along.
      Does this mean that Uber will have all sorts of responsibilities towards its employees regarding coronavirus?

      1. David

        What the Court seems to have said (although the French media are still digesting the implications of the judgement) is that they are not just employees but full time permanent employees, with the rights of what is known as a CDI contract, rather than temporary employees on renewable (CDD) contracts. This includes holiday pay, pensions, maternity leave and so forth. Some of the media are speculating that drivers (of whom about 100 have complaints ongoing) might be entitled to compensation for not having these benefits before, when they were entitled to them. And of course what goes for Uber goes in principle for all the other “sharing economy” and “platform” companies which have mushroomed in recent years.

    4. Ignacio

      One of the objectives of the new government in Spain is to fight fake “autoentrepreneuship”. Define and identify “autonomous workers” who are totally dependent economically from their contractors and then force the companies employing as regular staff. This antecedent from France has probably been seen with great interest by current authorities in Spain. The law and civic codes in Spain are in many instances daughters or inheritance from French law.

    5. ewmayer

      Some Uber-related news from its Sillycon Valley home:

      Ex-Uber Engineer Bankrupt After $179 Million Google Ruling | Bloomberg

      One of Silicon Valley’s most highly prized engineers filed for bankruptcy after Google won a $179 million award against him over his defection to Uber Technologies Inc.

      Anthony Levandowski’s understanding of self-driving cars spawned multimillion-dollar bidding wars for his talent, but he got caught between the companies’ fierce competition in the race to own the technology.

      Financial and legal liabilities that had steadily mounted for years finally proved too much when a San Francisco state judge refused Wednesday to release Levandowski from an award that Google won in arbitration over his violation of an agreement to not poach employees.

      The ruling leaves Levandowski on the hook to repay a $120 million bonus Google once paid him, and when interest and attorney fees were added, the amount swelled enough that the judge called it “pretty staggering.”Adding to the pressure, Levandowski faces criminal charges that he stole trade secrets from Google. He’s denied wrongdoing and retained top-flight lawyers to try to avoid a conviction at a trial next year that could send him to prison. One of those lawyers told a federal judge soon after Levandowski was charged that his net worth had diminished to $72 million after accounting for taxes and a divorce.

  15. thoughtful person

    Interesting US-CDC report on flu. Weekly data.

    Hospitalization at 0.96% so far this year by my math.

    32 million cases so far.

    Sobering to compare numbers we have for covid19. Flu is not like covid19, later much worse except in total cases ( so far).

      1. vlade

        Which is funny, as a number of “colds” are actually casued by other coronavirae now circulating in the human populace.

        For example, NL63 (which similar to Covid19 uses ACE2 receptors) causes around 5% of “common respiratory ilnesses” (aka from colds to viral penumonia), OC43 causes another 10-15% so there you already have between 15-20% of “flu” being caused by coronavirae.

        1. Monty

          Do you that the number is hyped up, by assimilating different conditions as flu, to make flu shots seem more worthwhile?

          1. vlade

            Disclaimer: I’m no expert.

            In most EU (not sure about the UK now, last few times I paid there, but it was a private practice as I didn’t really have a GP) countries I believe flu shot is free, and all “at risk” categories (young, old, people with chronic ilnesses, people exposed to lot of other people as part of their jobs) are encouraged to get it. The fact it’s free doesn’t mean pharma companies don’t make money on it, just that they have a single-sales point, so less bargaining price. I’d like to know whether the flu shot is a commidity (“generic”) or not, but I have no idea.

            On number over-estimations. Flu (as in really flu) is hard to estimate TBH. I’ve posted links yesterday which suggest that a vast majority of the flu infections are pretty much asymptomatic, or so mild as to be same as asymptomatic. So all you can do really is to look at hospitalisations and medical visits. I don’t know whether hospitalisations routinely scan for all different viruses, or not, medical visits definitely don’t.

            So, TLDR; I don’t really know, and am not sure anyone does. If you had a shot, and there’s a flu epidemic of the strain you’re vaccinated against, it’s definitely a plus. If you’re elderly or with a chornical ilness, then I believe again it’s very much worth it. But outside of that, I’m not so sure unless you vaccinate a lot to prevent epidemics in the first place (except it doesn’t help with differnet strains, so …)

            1. PlutoniumKun

              I don’t think anyone really knows the true breakdown as nearly all diagnoses of respiratory complaints are generalised, in few cases do they actually do full testing to identify if its a flu, some other virus, or bacterial. When old folks die, its often largely discretionary as to what they describe as the ’cause of death’, as so many will have multiple problems in their final days and weeks.

              Even with the healthy, there can be more than one issue. I had childhood asthma, one residual result of that is that when I get a viral infection its often followed up by a bacterial infection – my lungs get inflamed, leaving it vulnerable to an infection. I used to call them my ‘double tap’ colds. It was only recently that a new doctor carefully explained what was happening (most previously just said that I was just getting bad flu’s, or the flu was triggering asthma, I was frequently getting very contradictory recommendations). Essentially, if I have a chest infection longer than 5-7 days, I know its bacterial, so it can be treated with antibiotics and steroids.

              This is one reason why I’m keeping a small store of antibiotics to hand for coronavirus – I’m pretty healthy so I’m not very worried about the virus itself, its that with my medical history i need to be careful of additional infections/complications. It would worry me that others similar to myself will not be able to get the right treatment when doctors get overwhelmed.

                1. Ignacio

                  That is why the worldwide FluNet was developed, to watch Flu epidemics, detect which flu variants are prevalent and decide which vaccines to apply to the susceptible population each season.

    1. The Rev Kev

      Bunch of jerks. Their approach is going to get tens of thousands of American killed unnecessarily as the pandemic unfolds.

      1. The Historian

        No doubt! The White House’s response to Covid-19 seems to be if you get really sick, we’ll test you. Otherwise you are on your own. Sooooo… does THAT reduce the spread of the disease?

          1. The Historian

            How do you know the extent of the disease if you do not test broadly for it?

            1. jsn

              Rule 1: Because markets: NeoLiberalism sees life as an externality to markets and as such has structured a medical market where sick people are the primary source of demand making prevention an “anti-market” facto of “government interferance.”

              Rule 2: Go Die: both sustains this market configuration, enhances profitablity by goosing demand and eliminates the living who cannot pay, it appears to be the desired outcome.

              All is going according to plan…

              1. allan

                Washington state’s public health system was short on money — even before coronavirus arrived in Seattle [Seattle Times]

                … It’s a familiar pattern: local health workers frantically “putting out fires,” as one state report described, unable to keep up with a mounting backlog of communicable-disease reports. For years they have been understaffed because the Legislature and Gov. Jay Inslee have declined requests by the state public health network for more funding.

                The underfunding has also hit the Public Health Laboratory in Shoreline, the state’s central testing facility for coronavirus. The department can’t afford to service lab equipment or maintain the facility, according to a budget request submitted last year. …

                We’re suffering from a decades-long pandemic of deficit scolds.

                1. jsn

                  Yes! And now we’ve arrived at the Neoliberal reductio ad absurdum: cut funding to public service until the service is terrible and then subsidize the private sector to do the same thing more expensively, but the amount of risk in “public health” is so far beyond any private entities ability to bear that they’re all running from it.

                  It’s not just the deficit scolds, it’s the whole ideological edifice that says “government is the problem, not the solution.” You have to have a government as complex as the technology you choose to live with or the technologists run away with everything (last twenty years are my evidence for this theory, from Renaissance Technologies in Finance to Uber, WeWork, Amazon, Facebook, Google etc) and once you have that adequately complex government, you have to keep it democratic with feedback built in everywhere or it becomes sclerotic like our current one.

                  Deficit Attention Disorder is just the political voice of the Oligarchy looking after its rent streams and disburdening itself of public obligations, one facet of a polyvalent propaganda in favor of private wealth and power.

            2. inode_buddha

              Perhaps I should have used sarcasm tags, but frankly you can’t tell the difference between the Onion and reality anymore.

              1. jsn

                I’ve read enough of your comments to know how you meant it!

                It was a great setup to get my hobby horse off my chest.

                I’m breathing better, at least for now!

                1. inode_buddha

                  You and me both. I live on a privately owned road in snow country. Guess who doesn’t see pavement for 6 months?

                  I finally had out with my (very conservative) Dad once and he basically admitted that the Conservatives want no government at all, just anarcho-capitalism every man for himself.

          2. Brooklin Bridge

            What do you mean by needless waste? What do you mean by un-necessary testing? Is this snark?

            So a contagious individual who does not have severe symptoms can just keep infecting others so they can suffer and potentially (20 to 30 times more likely than the flu) die as long as we sweep the extent of the epidemic and the number of deaths under the rug as classified information (only Pence can inform the public lie about it)?

            1. inode_buddha

              Yes, extreme snark. I personally know Conservatives who think in exactly this way.

              1. Brooklin Bridge

                Sorry, my snark-0-meter is a little off today. I’m usually a little better at it. And I prefer it without road signs (/s) so my goof.

    2. MLTPB

      Covid 19 and the new green deal.

      I read a this morning that a leading coffee chain is going back to disposable cups.

      But less air travel, though public transportation involves sizable gatherings.

      Washing hands frequently can be a problem in drought stricken areas.

  16. Sam Adams

    Chuck L, I’m so sorry for the loss of your dachshund. They’re funny little fellows with hearts of Great Danes. I lost my Oscar after 20 1/2 years on February 5th.
    Lost him because of a concept I learned to name here, “crapification”. An equity fund bought the local emergency vet hospital. It was bought by the former Banfiełd CEO creating a Vet hospital conglomerate and then later sold on to a well known German family foreign investment trust. The hospital vets are all young, recently finished their specialization but management trained to upbill before treating or diagnosing. I brought him in to the hospital for a UTI, but immediately upcharged for heart tests and surgical consultations! MRI and multiple consults, tests and MRIs and hospital stay later; he was never treated for the UTI. He died in my arms the day after being released and paying $5000. He was once featured on this page with his teddy.
    My pet loss was the result of crapification.

    1. OIFVet

      Unbelievable, I am so sorry :( I am preparing my two feline owners for their immigration to Europe right now, and it’s incredibly stressful to talk with airlines about allowing them both in the cabin. One is very plump, over the airlines 18 pound threshold, so I am freaking out about the possibility of having to put her in the hold. Then there are clueless suggestions to leave them in a local free roaming shelter for cats, and that suggestion left my jaw hanging. Who the heck does that to elderly kitties who have been faithful companions for over 12 years? Crapification and disposable culture seem to go hand in hand.

      1. a different chris

        >to leave them in a local free roaming shelter

        OMG. I wouldn’t even be able to respond to that, half my neurons having to be immediately assigned to keeping the other half from knocking someone’s teeth out.

        Jesus. I’m glad “roaming shelters” exist but they are a solution when there is no other – basically the actual owner passed away and the next-of-kin aren’t permitted to have pets where they live.

    2. Jen

      I’m so sorry. That is just awful.

      A fantastic and very experienced vet that I used to go to went to work at our local emergency veterinary clinic. I happened to get her when one of my Goldens came down with what was probably lyme disease. Got a $145 blood test because it might have been another tick born illness – came back negative, and it turns out that the treatment is exactly the same.

      She left there after about a month. I’m guessing upbilling is probably the reason, because she really liked the variety and complexity of the cases she was seeing there.

  17. fresno dan
    I (Carville) just didn’t think that a modern American party (republican) was capable of suicide.
    Does the msm air people who are wrong, wrong, WRONG because they cost less, or is it because wrong information is more entertaining, or because they have an agenda???
    I was gonna list all the people who said Trump can’t win who are the same as say Bernie can’t win….but my computer can’t hold that much

    1. foghorn longhorn

      That moron ought to stick to nuts and sluts, it’s the only thing he’s an expert at.

      Welcome back dude.

    2. polecat

      I think Carville has Roulette’s syndrome.

      Shouting his expletives at Crats`de Mons : ‘Place on Red ish Blue.’

  18. Expat2Uruguay

    Here is an instructional video that explains what is known about the two different strains of the Coronavirus. Dr. John Campbell does really good videos once or twice a day either explaining some particular aspect of the disease and virus or updating the general situation. Highly recommended.

    1. Tvc15

      Completely agree with the recommendation Expat. Dr. Campbell has been my one of my main sources since early January. He provides evidence based data and presents in layman’s terms. In hindsight, he’s also now shown to be accurate with his concerns/predictions he expressed in January.

      1. MLTPB

        Does he say anything about a second wave?

        Compared with 1918, everything is so much faster today.

        Is it possible for a disease to go around the world in 2 or 3 months?

        Twice in a year? Thrice? Four times?

        Round the world in 80 days for David Niven, but 1 or 2 days for a kid today. That’s what, 40 to 80 times faster?

        1. Brooklin Bridge

          They [MIT Tech Review] pull no punches, however, in reporting on the criticism of the CDC in not making tests available and putting restrictions on their use, and for the tragic results of that in Washington state.

    2. Eclair

      Yesterday, Yves linked to the Bedford blog.

      The team at the Seattle lab does genomic epidemiology. They can trace the origin of infections by tracking the mutations undergone by the virus. All viruses mutate (as do all other organisms); viruses just do it faster, because they replicate at a greater rate. The lab estimates that this novel Corona virus mutates at the rate of two mutations per month. These are simple mutations on the genome; i.e., an A might change to a T. But they are easily identifiable (with the right high tech equipment!)

      They know the genome sequence of the original virus, thanks to the fast work of Chinese virologists, so can track the ‘journey’ of the virus by looking at how many mutations have occurred. It’s like the original virus makes two identity changes every month (roughly). So, in January, Corona went from ‘blonde hair’ to ‘red hair’ and from ‘blue eyes’ to ‘green eyes.’ Then, in February, Corona changed from ‘pale skin’ to ‘olive skin’ and from ‘big nose’ to ‘pug nose.’ Virologists can isolate a virus from a person in Seattle and, by identifying the viral version of hair color, eye color, skin tone and nose type, track it’s journey.

      Presumably these mutations have an effect on the lethality of the virus, but who knows which way that will go. And, please, any virologists amongst you, please correct my assumptions here.

      1. xkeyscored

        Not a virologist, but I think these mutations can have an effect on the lethality of the virus would be better.

      2. Ignacio

        Mutation generates a pool and variants are selected within that pool according to their fitness. In the beginning of an epidemic, when there is not specific immune resistance, the most infectious variants prevail (infectious is not the same as virulent), particularly at the front of the epidemics (the newest cases). Mutations that increase virulence can appear but these usually tend to be relatively short lived because the perceived virulence will result in containment (because casualties and behaviour changes) while mutations that do not increase or reduce virulence may let the virus pass unnoticed and spread and, in a single infected person, may not elicit strong immune responses. These kind of variants tend to prevail as the disease becomes pandemic.

        So far, in countries/states/regions where apparent mortality is higher this can be assigned to reasons that have nothing to do with virulence but others.
        1) Apparent mortality can be higher in the beginning of a epidemic because first contagions occurred unnoticed (Wuhan, Spain, Italy, Iran, WA) and the epidemic is advanced compared with the initial numbers of confirmed cases.
        2) It can be higher if not mitigation measures in place and healthcare is overwhelmed (Wuhan, Iran?)
        3) It can be particularly higher when the outbreak hits groups of susceptible populations like nursing homes (Italy, Spain, WA)

        No reason to panic about virulence with the high apparent mortality in Italy where the virus has hit many susceptible in homes for the elderly and hospitals. I am worried about the elder and people who are immunocompromised or have other complications. The general public, if keeping good hygienic practices and avoid circumstances that favour high virus loads (close contact with infected, hospitals, overcrowded enclosures…), should mostly pass this without consequences.

  19. marcyincny

    “Jolie’s last photo shoot.”

    So sorry but last moments are so important and you have yours beautifully preserved.

    At the end I took my favorite chow-chow to the vet’s, making sure her still-gorgeous ruff was carefully brushed out. A woman in the waiting room remarked “what beautiful dog” and I still take comfort in knowing she went out looking fabulous.

  20. Patrick Morrison

    “To summarise, COVID-19 spreads less efficiently than flu, transmission does not appear to be driven by people who are not sick, it causes more severe illness than flu, there are not yet any vaccines or therapeutics, and it can be contained,” – WHO head, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, March 2020

    reminds me too much of:

    “At this juncture, however, the impact on the broader economy and financial markets of the problems in the subprime market seems likely to be contained.” – Ben Bernanke, March 2007

    1. MLTPB

      I read Donald disputes their 3.4% number.

      Also, WHO apparently cautions contaminated cash may spread it, which was discussed here yesterday. Polymer money more so, than paper money.

  21. The Rev Kev

    “Coronavirus Porn Is Going Viral on Pornhub”

    Well of course it is. Anything that has a subject title will become a variation of porn sooner or later. I was trying to work out what will be changing in our society in the months and years to come and one that came up was how it would affect “business girls.” Who is going to hire a girl to do the dance-with-no-pants with Coronavirus running rampant?

    Between full body contact, sweat, heavy breathing and all the rest of it you are looking at a good way to catch this particular virus. A lot of customers may opt to settle for a porno video instead rather than risk it, particularly if they are in self-isolation. The same would be true of male escort as well as female escorts so that will be one particular effect of this pandemic.

    1. xkeyscored

      Business girls and rent boys are getting hit hard here already, along with the rest of the hospitality industry, but typically with a lot less to fall back on than guest house owners etc..

  22. The Rev Kev


    There is so much bad news on this front you do not know where to look. One of the hardest hit countries is Iran where medical staff are really under the gun and a video surfaced recently of scores of full black body-bags in just one morgue alone. You can imagine the pressure that they are under but I was pleased to see that one of the ways that they have coped with their excessive workload is an online meme called the Dancing Nurse Challenge which has been circulating lately. Below is one example and there are others to be found on YouTube-

    You can see the humanity shining through here with this girl and her friends and I am reminded of the saying that it is only in the dark that you can see the stars.

    1. MLTPB

      Female nurses can’t show too much face or body, and while aerobic exercises are allowed, dancing is not.

      That’s f
      What I remember from watching the documentary Our Man in Tehran.

      1. xkeyscored

        I guess that’s half the reason they’re doing the video and the challenge, feeling they can get away with it in present circumstances unlike before.
        “Do you wanna sack us and jail us now? No, thought not!”

        1. MLTPB

          A healthier challenge would be to make a video urging Tehran to back down from any action that will create more migrants in the covid 19 existing region.

        1. John

          Yes. But they don’t need the costume because their super hero-ness is lethal to all germs and viruses.

      1. MLTPB

        The weather forecast next week: around 50 during the day, and 30 to 40 at night, rain possible Thurs.

        Inside with lots of people is not much for social distancing.

          1. MLTPB

            In Switzerland, no gatherings over 1,000, I believe.

            You get that and more at the WHO HQ.

            In New york, that will close the UN building.

            And in DC, there are likely over 1,000 where senators work daily. Many of them over 75.

            1. Wukchumni

              There is hope with the MLB season opener approaching, that empty stands can be enhanced by fans performing a virtual wave, online.

              1. Wukchumni


                I’ve previously mentioned MLB dying of natural causes, in that it was just too slow of a game for younger adults who have stayed away in droves, and i’ve been to an Oakland A’s game in the 80’s where I was one of less than 800 in the crowd, and it was so quiet, I could hear a player in the dugout talking.

                So the prospect of teams (all the players & coaches, staff, etc. would have to be tested before each game) playing before raptured crowds could be daunting, but there’s a weird silver lining that might save the game from itself, in that I suspect much of the population will be shut ins for the immediate future, and 162 games worth of diversion delivered to your living room.

                Play ball!

              2. MLTPB

                For players, playing in empty stadiums, the question of whether to ban facial hair is still open.

                Do you want to stand next to a bearded first base man?

            2. The Rev Kev

              DC? Why that could wipe out the elderly leadership of the Democratic party as well as a lot of elderly Republicans! And all those elderly billionaires as well. Hmmmm.

          2. Wukchumni

            To me, Coronavirus feels almost like WW2 and we’re in the Phony War part now, lots of disinformation and idleness, with the main events still in the future, and everybody seems to think this episode will last a year or 2, tops.

            …what if it plays out over 6 years instead?

      2. Jokerstein

        The organizers have offered unconditional refunds, but I still expect downtown to be full of attendees.

          1. Tim

            So you’re saying the employee now has to handle the whole back room of the warehouse themselves?

    2. jashley

      Iran, if some of these stories are correct then they are insane.

      releasing 55,000 prisoners to stop the spread. insane
      licking religous shrines even in the face of the cv19 scare and leaders getting sick . insane.
      absolute insanity.

      dancing their way to mass graves.

      1. Trent

        our entire “reality”

        If the market crashes now, bernie will win bigly. If they can prop it up until july and biden getting the nomination and then it crashes, trump loses bigly.

          1. Trent

            not sure how this “pandemic” will go, but its the perfect cover for terrible economic numbers that had been building for some time, money printing, and draconian controls instituted.

        1. jashley

          if bernie gets blown out in Mich and/or Florida he won’t be the nom.

          He better get AOC and the squad under control and lite a fire under them to get out his voters.
          biden won’t make it out of any debates alive.
          country will find it hard to vote aginst a war-time prez.
          see bush the younger.

          1. Arizona Slim

            And Nina Turner. I thought she’d be living in SC for a few weeks. Hardly a sign of her in the Palmetto State.

        2. Lee

          Mr. Market hates Sanders. According to various news sources, yesterday’s rally was attributed to the Biden primary surge. Healthcare stock rocketed skyward. But then today, coronavirus fears are evidently again front of mind and the market is down once more. Let’s hope the net effect is a chipping away of faith in market driven solutions to all things. Always the optimist, me.

          1. inode_buddha

            It’s very hard to feel sorry for Mr. Market after surviving the Giant Sucking Sound and 2008.

            1. John

              Mr. Market is a video game totally detached from any reality that the under-class inhabits. I had a brief taste of Wall Street around 1960. It was nothing at all like the button pushing circus of today.

  23. Frank Little

    This is from yesterday but relevant to the Super Tuesday post-mortems posted above. From the NYT yesterday: Wall Street, Encouraged by Biden’s Wins, Breaks Out Its Checkbooks:

    Given all that, Mr. [Leon] Cooperman said he would wait to hear more from Mr. Biden before committing to support him. “I’d like to see, hear more about what he’s got to say,” he said. But after watching the candidate surge past Mr. Sanders on Tuesday, he added, “hopefully the left wing of the Democratic Party understands they’ll get murdered if they go with a left-wing candidate.”

    After a parade of quotes from Wall Street people about how bad and poorly thought out Sanders’ plans are and thank goodness the Democrats came to their senses, Cooperman gives away the game: they’re still not gonna support Joe Biden!

    I guess it’s all just a matter of hedging, since they’re likely to do well under either Biden or Trump. It’s depressing to think of how effective this kind of thing appears to be on at least some Democratic primary voters, given that Biden won in states where he barely bothered to campaign.

  24. CoryP

    So, it seems like everyone here was much more awake during 2016 than I was.

    I have gotten too emotionally involved in the horse-race, but had a moment of clarity where I realized it’s like one of those delusions where you think your favourite soap opera characters are real people. That what you’re seeing isn’t real, or at least not how you thought it was.

    I feel like many here have internalized this better than I.

    So why is everyone so keen on the horse-race? If it’s a given that the election will be tilted, out-right falsified if necessary, and people killed or otherwise disabled if it gets too far.

    Are we just hoping that Bernie manages to wake everyone up despite his election and/or success being literally impossible?

    Or do people think that TPTB are actually so scattered and incompetent that he could actually DO something besides consciousness-raising?

    Either way, love the coverage here and I realize this question might say more about my mental health than about the election.

    1. jsn

      Personally, I’m interested in the race to the extent outcomes are uncertain, because the outcomes reframe the participants understanding.

      I don’t stay up and wait for returns. I’m pretty invested in Bernie but know what he’s up against. Trump was able to blunder through his hostile take over of the Republicans because the R Plutonomy is so decadent they really believed that money was all that mattered: Bloomberg’s little R escaped into the D party sort of proves that hypothesis. Sanders is trying to take over the party of Narrative Control, the CIA and the PMC, a much slipperier and more amoral lot in my opinion, a party of Albert Speers.

      What Bernie’s accomplished already has been to consolidate the ethos of Occupy Wall Street into the spine of a Movement. He could still win this thing and get Russia,Russia,Russiaed like Trump, or he could get “algorithmed” in the vote-machine ether or “app-ed” in the voting aftermath, but each in turn, should/when they happen will open more eyes, clarify more understanding: trends that cannot continue indefinitely, won’t!

    2. pretzelattack

      well, people see we have to change the system, and recognize it’s going to be a monumental task. as hard as it is going to be to win the nomination, and then beat trump, i think the hardest step is actually getting meaningful change through if he can win the presidency in the face of united opposition. i don’t think the republicans are doing much bernie ratf……. during the primary process, and the democrats may provide some support in the general, so his campaign has to beat, in succession, the dnc and their pet media and donors, the rnc and their pet media and donors (often the same donors as the dems);, and then both and their donors, and k street, and a relentlessly hostile msm. and cheating all along the way.

      but what is the alternative to following the electoral process? it means some people getting killed. it took violence and the threat of violence in the 30’s and the 60’s to get some major changes made. the system is killing people right now, but it’s less stark than people being gunned down in the steets–it grinds people down. voting for people like biden or trump feels far less committal and risky. in the short term, that’s true.

      my optimism, such as it is, is grounded in the fact that people have faced similar obstacles in the past and eventually prevailed. in any case, we have to resist as best we can.

    3. Jeremy Grimm

      If he could do nothing else — Bernie could name a cabinet and executive branch leadership that actually did their jobs and enforced existing laws. Then Congress could approve his appointments or stall placing the appointments — Bernie could stand fast — and we might see a new House and a different Senate at the next election.

    4. WJ

      I believe that part of this phenomenon is irrational. On the one hand, I am and have been thoroughly propagandized to believe that the U.S. is a “democracy”–or “representative republic” if we get technical–and so there’s part of me that can’t help believing that this is true–and desiring it to be true–and so I find myself getting caught up in the horse-race as if it were somehow legitimate or accurate. On the other hand, I have enough historical and political economic wherewithal to understand that there is no *real* evidential basis for the belief that our elections are legitimate, and plenty of evidence, circumstantial and otherwise, to suggest that they are not. So I partly just live with this contradiction.

      However, I am also cheered on by a very astute comment by Joseph Goebbels, who once said:

      “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”

      At a certain point, the “consequences of the lie” outpace the State’s capacity to shield the people from feeling them, and at *that* point things get very interesting indeed. We are not yet at that point, in my opinion, but we are getting close to it.

      1. Oh

        I believe that part of this phenomenon is irrational. On the one hand, I am and have been thoroughly propagandized to believe that the U.S. is a “democracy”–or “representative republic” if we get technical–and so there’s part of me that can’t help believing that this is true–and desiring it to be true–and so I find myself getting caught up in the horse-race as if it were somehow legitimate or accurate. On the other hand, I have enough historical and political economic wherewithal to understand that there is no *real* evidential basis for the belief that our elections are legitimate, and plenty of evidence, circumstantial and otherwise, to suggest that they are not.

        We have a sham of a democracy and you’d better believe it. The horse race is just so the optimists can bask in the short lived glow.

      2. Tom Bradford

        “the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.”

        Only to the extent that the State is being dishonest. It does not have to be a given.

    5. Jonathan Holland Becnel

      We, the Workers of the World, are in it to win it.

      Everyone Fights. No One Quits.

      1. Spring Texan

        I do think the result of this will be many young and old Sanders supporters will look beyond electoral politics for other means to disrupt and prevail, but this is still just heartbreaking.

        1. a different chris

          What is heartbreaking, if true (and not sure it is, how can they actually tell?) is the sag in the youth vote.

          That is bad, bad, bad. They aren’t going to be able to either fix the system from outside or even work around it, not matter what they think. OWS and suchlike are very important but it’s like pulling the trigger of a gun when there is no bullet in the chamber. They gotta get more AOCs in office or they are going to have miserable lives.

    6. a different chris

      >Or do people think that TPTB are actually so scattered and incompetent that he could actually DO something besides consciousness-raising?

      Yeah not me. Note that I am the one that keeps saying Trump is highly likely to get booted even by Droolin’ Joe, but the one thing that has been illustrated by all this about the Dems is that winning is not actually of prime importance. It would just be a happy but unrelated result.

      They insist on a winner from their clique or forgettaboutit. And their clique is immensely powerful. Super Tuesday is their “and now behold the power of a fully functional Death Star” moment.

      PS: everybody who thinks Trump will decimate Biden better remember this, too.

      1. Oh

        The DimRat leaders know that they have to create an illusion of wanting to win so they can collect the real winnings (political contributions).

  25. tegnost

    FTA…In the Seattle area, the average cost for a 40-minute outpatient visit is $312 without insurance and $162 with insurance, according to FAIR Health, an national nonprofit. For a moderate-severity emergency room visit, the average costs are $227 or $109.

    But almost 40% of American adults don’t have enough money saved to cover a $400 emergency, noted Kelly Powers, a board member at the advocacy organization Health Care for All WA.

    “The typical out-of-pocket expense for an unexpected major medical event is $1,000,” Powers said.

  26. antidlc

    Yesterday’s water cooler, Lambert wrote:

    “What to me is remarkable is the sudden, two-digit swing in Biden’s favor in the polling over a weekend (!), and then the voting booth (Biden got the great majority of last-minute deciders). This is quite remarkable, and I can’t think of another example of it happening. To me, it looks like authoritarian followers waiting for a signal of who to vote for, which the Establishment unambiguously sent over the weekend, with the obviously coordinated Buttigieg and Klobuchar endorsements, and then a flood of other endorsements by Democrat, er, luminaries. It feels to me like party loyalty on this order is a lot like an asset class (RussiaGate is another such class.) ”

    Chris Hayes was on Colbert last night and said the same thing: people were looking for a “signal” of whom to vote for — who had the best chance of beating Trump. People asked Chris whom to vote for and he said “Vote for who you want to be president.”

    1. jsn

      Looks to me like un-auditable electronic voting machines.

      I am open to the tribalism / authoritarianism argument, but there is only one reason to use electronic voting machines.

      1. Tvc15

        “but there is only one reason to use electronic voting machines.”

        To steal from Lambert’s daily reminder of the Frank Dune quote, it’s treachery, right?

      2. antidlc

        Not disagreeing with you. I just wanted Lambert to know someone else mentioned the same thing. Maybe Chris reads NC?

        I have posted about the voting machines previously.

        –antidlc (M.S. Computer Science, who has written a fair number of programs in a previous life.)

    2. michael99

      At work this past weekend (in suburban Sacramento) a couple of people I spoke with were still undecided about who to vote for. Buttigieg (ugh) received high praise, but one of his admirers told me later she voted for Bloomberg because she didn’t think Pete could win. She (~70 years old) also referred to Sanders as “out there” and his agenda as impractical/unaffordable. My read was that the undecideds were trying to choose among the ‘not Sanders’ candidates, and couldn’t figure out which one could win (and go on to defeat Trump.) Three of the four people I spoke with were ~ 50 – 70 year-old women. After one of the positive comments about Buttigieg, a 20-something man in the group opined that Pete’s candidacy seemed overly “focus-grouped”. FWIW.

  27. JohnnyGL

    “After failing to win any of the Super Tuesday states, including her home state, Warren’s campaign is reportedly looking for a way out. According to the Post, both Sanders and Joe Biden’s surrogates have courted Warren for a potential endorsement should she decided to end her campaign.”

    It appears negotiations are underway in earnest and now we’re just talking price.

    I really hope they can put Warren to work as an attack dog. She needs to stay in the race at this point to get to the next debate to go hit biden like she hit bloomberg.

    No, it won’t be quite as effective because it’ll lack the element of surprise, but Warren’s got a skillset that Sanders clearly lacks and is in dire need of, at this point….the killer instinct.

    1. PlutoniumKun

      Lots of people (including me) thought Warren was deluded to stay in the race and was facing humiliation. But it seems she’s lucked out, and found herself in a marvellous position to negotiate whatever she wants. I think she’ll go for Biden – she will be like Bush I to Reagan, the true power behind the (senile) throne.

  28. JohnnyGL

    AOC interviewed by Chris Cuomo. She does a nice job, but doesn’t throw a punch.

    Will someone PLEASE throw a punch at Joe Biden? He’s awful, just say it.

    The campaign spent months trying to gently guide him off stage-right. After three states voted, they thought the job was done, but now it’s clearly not. Are they really going to let more valuable time slip away without hitting Biden, directly?

    1. jashley

      looked at the clip.
      such softballs.
      no wonder she looks good but says nothing.
      the bit about hedging on convention tactics was really bad.
      say you are willing to fight for the nom, if it’s as important as AOC says it is then you can’t lay down in the same breath.

      1. Trent

        my cynical take: They are going after her seat and her. She likes being a politician better then a bartender. She’s playing ball.

      1. jrs

        OTOH give the NYT credit for at least seeing that Biden wasn’t fit to rule, sure they are the voice of an establishment and their interests are not our interests. But still it was absolutely fricken obvious to them that Biden isn’t even a good establishment front.

    1. Monty

      How are you bearing up. Weren’t you saying you’d been feeling rather unwell the other day?

      1. Wyoming

        Thanks for asking. I am better in that the cycle of chills/fever seems to have finally stopped – I had no idea that could go on for almost a week. Still coughing up scary goop but that is lessening as well. Slept lying down last night which was very nice. So on the way back I think. Now to gain back all the strength I lost. I still wonder about having the coronavirus but water under the bridge at this point – except for those I might have infected I suppose…..

    2. Daryl

      > “I need some space around this,” Warren said, “and I want to take a little time to think a little more.”

      Translation — they are timing the Biden endorsement for right before 3/10.

      1. pretzelattack

        if that’s what the dnc thinks that will do the most damage, they will want her to do that. i’m almost completely convinced she only operates by the principle of political opportunism; so she will very likely go along. krystal ball argued that if she wants to be president her best bet might be to swing her support to sanders in return for the vp slot–krystal thought there was no chance biden would give her that, because he doesn’t really need her. and maybe he’s already promised that slot to half a dozen other people, and forgotten only half of them.

  29. Tvc15

    For all the angry and frustrated Sanders supporters including me here is a link to a Jimmy Dore video from today. It’s definitely a rant at times, but he’s spot on IMO. Not me, but for anyone sensitive to language please be advised.

    1. Arizona Slim

      That video was my first-thing-in-the-morning waker-upper. Great stuff.

      It got me more fired up than a cuppa coffee would have. (Slim doesn’t drink coffee.)

    2. John k

      Depressingly true.
      I suspect it’s not his advisors, it’s Bernie unwilling to point out joes flaws.

      1. CBBB

        Bernie doesn’t have the hate. He hated Bloomberg but I don’t think Bernie has the hate for guys like Joe Biden.

    3. WJ

      “Why did you go on a f******* unity tour with the Democratic Party?”

      A good question.
      This is why many people–or, at least, some people–regard Sanders as a sheep dog.

  30. polecat

    If the sponcers of that ComicCon event were smart, they’ll reschedule .. to be seen in hindsight, as super-heros, for doing so !

    however, vulcan logic dictates they will forge ahead as planned, anyway.

    1. anon in so cal

      A Monrovia, California middle school received a deep cleaning bc a parent who works in healthcare may have been in contact with a positive case of Corona virus. City and school district repeated the CDC claim that asymptomatics cannot transmit the virus. I believe this is inaccurate.

      1. allan

        These are direct consequences of SCOTUS declaring parts of the Voting Rights Act unconstitutional
        in Shelby County vs. Holder. Some choice details [SPOILER ALERT: one set of predictions was right
        and one of them was wrong.]:

        … Ilya Shapiro of the Cato Institute said that the Supreme Court’s decision “restore[d] the constitutional order, the status quo ante the temporary Sections 4/5, because there is no longer systemic racial disenfranchisement, or at the very least in the covered jurisdictions.”[30] In contrast, Jon Greenbaum, chief counsel of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law, said that because of the decision, “[m]inority voters in places with a record of discrimination are now at greater risk of being disenfranchised than they have been in decades” and that their only recourse will be to pursue expensive litigation.[55] Penda Hair, co-director of national racial justice organization Advancement Project, spoke along similar lines, saying, “The Supreme Court’s ruling rolls back legislation that courageous Americans fought so hard for, even giving their lives in many cases, to ensure that all citizens can participate in our democracy. Today’s decision threatens the promise of equal access to the ballot – especially when the majority of voters of color who voted last year, 65.8 percent, live in states covered by the Section 4 formula.”[56]

        Oh, those plucky self-described libertarians. And then …

        An investigation by ProPublica in October 2017 revealed that Chief Justice John Roberts used erroneous data in the ruling.[57] Roberts claimed that the registration gap between blacks and whites had shrunk dramatically in southern states since the Civil Rights Act of 1965, this calling into question why six southern states were subject to stringent oversight.[57] Roberts included Hispanics into his numbers for whites, including even those who could not register to vote because they were not U.S. citizens, thereby making the newly “white” registration rate lower than what it would have been.[57] …

        To coin a phrase, they hate us for our freedoms.

        1. MLTPB

          Ruling to reverse.

          In general, for those who had something, only to lose it later, the pain is deeper, the change appearing more tragic.

  31. Otis B Driftwood

    Re California votes, I can attest from working at a poll that about 50% of the votes cast were provisional/conditional. Most were due to lost mail-in ballots or voters from other locations.

    1. John

      Would it not make more sense to have polls open from the Friday before election day until final closure on the official election day and do away with all this mail in nonsense, and while we are at it paper ballots hand marked in public. Get rid of the machines and if that causes the cracking of some “iron rice bowls”, too bad. You might even pay a stipend to polling place workers.

      The various ways of trying to tilt the vote in one direction or another has become blatant. No one has the decency to even tryu to conceal the chicanery any more.

      1. jrs

        No, too many candidates dropped out between Friday before election day and election day. So as long as candidates are allowed to do that, which is frankly quite ridiculous but there you go, early voting makes no sense.

    1. PewPew

      Why doesn’t this get any attention (at least on the left)?

      Does it just activate the ‘learned helplessness’ response? I wish it would at least get the attention of a counter-argument. But near total silence is baffling.

    2. Big Tap

      And an exit poll accounts for any voter last minute preference changes nor captured in normal polling. The actual vote totals are fishy. The difference always favors Biden. Something is wrong here. Can Bernie ask for recounts?

  32. Jeremy Grimm

    RE: “Struggling AT&T …”
    What is AT&T’s ‘rationalization’ strategy about? Is there no jurate to protect words from such torture?

    How did AT&T end up in the hole it’s in? There are GE, GM, and Boeing, and now AT&T in trouble. What are the masters of the universe up to? What theory does the Harvard Business Review use to justify executive and CEO salaries and perks now? After the masters of the universe are done only the brand names will remain, and someone else will own them.

    1. foghorn longhorn

      Just keep this in mind and it will make sense.

      There is not a system in the universe that att CANNOT eff up.

      Give em a feather and a steel ball and you will have ball bearings in the morning.

      1. Jeremy Grimm

        You ignored the two issues I was hoping to hear more opinions about — 1) what sort of managerial class can so successfully dismantle the great Corporations of our past glory and still carry off huge paychecks and perks and 2) I do not know but would very much like to know what exactly AT&T did to put itself into the hole it seems to be in.

        I still remember Mr. Science from the Bell Labs TV specials and the Sun-to-Sound kit my father received as a High School Physics teacher and brought home to me after no one in his classes showed much interest. I still remember the computer singing “Daisy” I heard on a recording that went with the kit. I remember when AT&T was a public utility and somewhat controlled by the Government and provided reliable phone services nationwide at prices more reasonable than those we pay now.

  33. Wukchumni

    New Zealand Birds Show Humanlike Ability To Make Predictions Science
    My favorite of the NZ winged set is the Tui, which has quite the range of sounds in it’s unusual call, including what sounds like somebody knocking on a hollow wood vessel, but I knew Keas would be featured, being close to Mensa level in their intelligence.

    My favorite encounter with them was on top of Avalanche Peak in Arthur’s Pass NP, one would be playful and pose for photo ops-distracting you, while it’s mates were seeing what they could make off with of yours, teamwork lad, put your beaks into it!

  34. Wukchumni

    ahref=”” rel=”nofollow”>French ski resort goes bust due to lack of snow in Alps Independent (resilc)

    We ski in 10 days from now @ Mammoth, and looking at the forecast, there’s a bit of precip coming but hardly any snow, so it’ll be rain on say 5 inches of tilted ice rink and 40-45 degree temps during the day, which is easily my least favorite conditions, in our continued winter of missed content.

    I think it’d be maddening to own a ski resort in the midst of climate change, but i’m glad somebody reckons its a good idea.

  35. Wukchumni

    I’ve mentioned $200+ weeklong cruises, but that isn’t going to get it done with so many floating coffins out there, the latest one marooned off of Marin.

    I’m anxious to report the first offering where they pay you a couple hundred clams to roll the dice…

    1. Daryl

      How long can cruises go without re-supplying? I’m guessing the answer is not very long, but what if we start our own apocalypse cruise. Take only the healthy, no docking anywhere until this thing blows over. An inverse quarantine.

      1. Wukchumni

        The last quarantine I can remember was the Apollo 11 astronauts, who I got to see about 3 weeks later while perched on my father’s shoulders on the sidewalk about as far away from them as you could be on a day it rained ticker tape from the heavens. I think Neil waved at me, i’m pretty sure.

        Every parade has paled in comparison, since.

  36. antidlc

    Can the uninsured get tested?

    “Can you please provide some guidance to the uninsured?” Karem asked. “Can the uninsured get tested?”

    As Pence exited and the rest of the task force began to file out, Karem said, “Gentlemen, ladies can the uninsured get tested?”

    Miller — who recently married White House senior adviser Stephen Miller — turned to Karem and said, “Screaming for the camera isn’t going to get you anywhere!”

    “Well, how about answering the question?” Karem said, as another reporter agreed, “We would like an answer to that question.”

  37. Daryl

    > Simple Systems Have Less Downtime Greg Kogan. This is considered to be novel?!?!

    In the tech world… sort of. There are those of us who feel this way, but we’re a bit outnumbered. The same could probably said for e.g. healthcare systems, planes, voting processes, although in those cases complication is sometimes (often?) the result of malice rather than simply people getting in over their heads.

  38. Wukchumni

    Pardon this mind fart, but we’re so used to things going viral online in an invisible way of transit, poof, a video of a Shih-Tzu in Shanghai that does pull ups is spread to tens of millions in no time flat.

    Coronavirus is transmitted transparently and doesn’t care if you’re powered up, and the 2 are complimenting one another in this contraption which can spread fear like no other means of communication we’ve ever devised.

  39. Wukchumni

    Devil’s Own Ombudsman Mutterings:

    We all know there’s a veritable shitlode of empty homes, and buildings of every kind from sea to shining sea, and if quarantining those afflicted becomes a priority, said dwellings would be occupied pretty quick, possession of the virus being 9/10’s of the law in a rigor mortgage scenario.

  40. John Beech

    DNC Scrambles To Change Debate Threshold After Gabbard Qualifies Johnstone

    I like some of what Gabbard has to say. Have since I first heard of her, but early on, I decided she was going nowhere fast. Since her campaign costs peanuts, she’s hung around. And in winning a delegate, she can no more be eliminated from the debate as you can move the goal posts after the kicker has sent the ball on its way. Change the rules after voting has begun isn’t in accord with ‘my’ American sense of fair play. What about yours?

    Moreover, where’s the press in this? The press is a relatively ancient profession (unlike doctors who invented their do-no-harm oath, the money guys and the fiduciary rule, or postmen with their gloom of night), the press are the subject of the 1st Amendment of the US Constitution. Freedom of the press! Full stop.

    So why isn’t the press impartially calling balls and strikes? Why are have they gone quiet as a church mouse? Maybe the real inconvenient truth is Trump’s totally – 100% – correct for calling them out as fake news. Sigh.

    1. pretzelattack

      in a boxing analogy, the press is adalaide byrd, and biden is canelo (against golovkin).

      1. Lee

        Erislandy Lara also got robbed in his fight with Canelo.

        I like boxing, but I haven’t been watching it much lately. Too many questionable decisions.

        1. pretzelattack

          canelo got a draw from one judge in his fight with floyd. absolutely ridiculous scoring.

  41. Oregoncharles

    “electoral asteroid” – there’s a deal, and it’s the Dems’ job to lose this time. They take turns, two full terms at a time.

    Paranoid theory? Sure – but it fits the facts.

  42. John Beech

    Struggling AT&T Plans ‘Tens of Billions’ In Cost Cuts, More Layoffs ars technica

    When you find yourself in a hole you gotta stop digging! Or is AT&T management too stupid to realize they have to cut prices instead of acting like the post office constantly raising the price of 1st class letters until they strangled demand? in order to rescue the business it would also help if they’d change their tactics. You know, where they offer an enticing 1-year price followed by a royal screwing on subsequent years.

    In my opinion this last is a morally bankrupt business philosophy bordering on being sharp. It’s my further opinion the C-suite that invented/condones this practice needs to go. Replacing them with honest brokers, along with a clear eyed assessment of where the market is headed (Musk and low-earth orbit satellites are going to play havoc with their business model), would – along with getting prices right – bring a halt to people fleeing the service. In short, just stop digging!

    1. michael99

      +1. I dropped landline phone service and cable tv more than 10 years ago, entirely because of the price gouging. The cartel missed out on some revenue there.

        1. inode_buddha

          I gather that you’ve never paid a landline bill? Mine used to be $75/month regardless if there was even any calls at all. That’s a grand a year just to have a connection.

          My cell is less than half of that and I use it all the time.

    2. pretzelattack

      the post office was struggling under the absolutely ridiculous funding demands for pensions required by congress. at&t has no such handicap.

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