Links 11/15/2020

Happy Diwali!

How India Celebrated Diwali Amid Coronavirus Pandemic. See Pics NDTV

Cruise line resumed voyages in Caribbean. It’s not going well [Updated] Ars Technica

Fences Can Cause ‘Ecological Meltdown,’ Study Finds TreeHugger

Experience: my parachute failed Guardian

Today I Learned’: 40 Interesting Things People Haven’t Learned At School Bored Panda

Government climate adviser urges Boris Johnson to act now to be ‘credible’ on crisis Independent

Egypt unveils scores of ancient coffins, statues found in Saqqara Al Jazeera

‘This Is a Really, Really Big Deal’: Michigan Gov. Moves to Shut Down Line 5 Pipeline to Protect Great Lakes Common Dreams


New stats reveal massive NYC exodus amid coronavirus, crime NY Post

The Pandemic Winter Is Coming to New York, and It’s Going to Be Unimaginably Hard NY magazine

Thanksgiving in a Pandemic Means Smaller Birds, Fewer Leftovers WSJ. I’m not sure this is not a silver lining to the pandemic cloud. Those who have celebrated many holidays abroad may have observed that other cultures make far less – and thus throw away far less- holiday food. Maybe this is a good lesson for those in the US to learn, regardless of what caused their enlightenment.

How P&G Launched a 24-Hour Disinfecting Spray Just as Covid-19 Hit the U.S.WSJ

Mandatory Covid-19 testing for ‘high-risk’ groups in Hong Kong gets nod, those who ignore orders face jail, fines SCMP

The woman who fell from the sky Reuters

Coronavirus: Austria locks down as new wave grips Europe BBC

The Enraging Deja Vu of a Third Coronavirus Wave ProPublica

As U.S. pandemic intensifies, North Dakota becomes 35th state to require masks Reuters

How to Avoid a Surprise Bill for Your Coronavirus Test NYT. Grifters gotta gruft.


From Coronavirus to a Cancer Vaccine? Der Spiegel

Covid-19 vaccines shouldn’t get emergency-use authorization MIT Technology Review

Health experts want to prioritize people of color for a Covid-19 vaccine. But how should it be done? Stat. All very well and good, until the side effects start showing up. Shades of Tuskegee.


Armenians torch their homes on land ceded to Azerbaijan AP


Rockets ‘fired from Ethiopia’s Tigray region’ hit Eritrea capital Al  Jazeera


Peru impeachment protests: Clashes with police turn deadly BBC

Trump Transition

Million MAGA March: Thousands of pro-Trump protesters rally in Washington DC BBC

Why Trump Carried Out His Pentagon Purge New Yorker

As if We Didn’t Have Enough to Worry About … NYT Nick Kristof

Schwarzman defended Trump at CEO meeting on election results FT


How Pence & GOP Senators Could Try To Steal The Election The Daily Poster

In Georgia, a laborious, costly and historic hand recount of presidential ballots begins WaPo

Georgia voters approve ballot measure that could direct millions to new recycling efforts Waste Dive I have mixed feelings about these efforts to  chase the recycling fairy, as I believe they divert efforts away from confronting the full scope of the global plastics problem.; see the recent post by Yves about NJ’s new plastics policy.

Proposition 15 Goes Down Swinging Capital & Main

John and Gisele Fetterman Are Fighting for the American Working Class Teen Vogue

There Was No Knockout, So Democrats and G.O.P. Regroup for Next Round NYT

1 in 10 Go Hungry as Trump and McConnell Fixate on Challenging Election Results Truthout

Biden Transition

Joe Biden Is Already On The Warpath Against Brexit American conservative

A National Security Reckoning Foreign Affairs. Hillary Clinton.

Nancy Pelosi Should Not Be the Next Speaker of the House Jacobin

What Biden’s Win Means for the Future of Criminal Justice Marshall Project

Secretary Rahm Emanuel? Former Chicago mayor floated for Biden Cabinet spot, but his handling of Laquan McDonald case and ‘Mayor 1%’ rep remain a drag with progressives Chicago Tribune

Biden Asked Republicans to Give Him a Chance. They’re Not Interested. NYT

After White House Victory, Democrats Are Divided on What Is Next WSJ

Black Economist Floated for Labor Sec – Only 51% of Union Households Voted Against Prop 22 – Red Cross Workers Picket Payday Report

This Isn’t Feminism, It’s Imperialism In Pumps Caitlin Johnstone


 Boris Johnson boots out top adviser Dominic Cummings Guardian

What a way to run a country! The hatreds, tears and tantrums behind the ousting of Dominic Cummings revealed – and the ‘victory party’ thrown by Carrie Symonds to celebrate Daily Mail


Delhi air quality worsens to ‘severe’ category on Diwali Scroll

The Unrevealing Nakedness of Milind Soman The Wire

‘How much does Obama know about India,’ asks Sanjay Raut after his remarks on Rahul Gandhi Scroll

How Modi has made a ‘Nehruvian’ half-blunder on China & ignored investing in the military The Print


Don’t try to change China’s system, former official warns US SZMP

Our Famously Free Press

Why Matthew Yglesias Left Vox The Atlantic

Class Warfare

Mold, Possums and Pools of Sewage: No One Should Have to Live Like This NYT

Antidote du Jour (via):

See yesterday’s Links and Anidote du Jour here.

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  1. timbers

    My father told me a Thanks Giving joke. In Minnesota, thanks giving and home guests is recently limited to (I think) 3, funerals to 30.

    So he’s going have a funeral to morn the passing of the family member turkey at his home for his friends.

    1. jackiebass

      For me caution and common sense rule my thinking and decision making. My daughter usually comes from CA either at Christmas of Thanksgiving to visit. We enjoy this visit and really enjoy seeing he and her stay. This year I told her I didn’t think it was a good idea to come and visit. I was concerned about her getting infected or perhaps infecting us.She agreed and was actually happy about my suggestion. She and we have been practicing safe practices. It’s everything else that is a threat. This virus is very contagious and you just don’t know how it will effect you. I just don’t trust others that they will behave in a safe manner. I love to go to a local bar and have a couple beers and some conversations. Even after the bars in NYS were allowed to open , I stayed home because of my mistrust in others and my being cautious. The best way to stay safe is to be cautious in what you do. Don’t let emotions cloud your judgment.

      1. Larry

        My plan is to make the drive to see family for driveway pie over the Thanksgiving weekend. We can still gather outside and catch up, for as long as the temps allow it. But absolutely no inside gatherings.

      2. ambrit

        Some of the military gas masks incorporate drinking tubes which can be connected to GI issue canteens. Those canteens can handle just about any liquid.
        My mind’s eye conjures up the image of a row of bar patrons, all in full CBW gear sitting along a bar counter.

        1. newcatty

          Now why did your mind’s image remind me of Star Wars? I would like a Sky toddy with a twist of Star fruit on the moon rocks. Thanks.

        2. jr

          There had better not be any sugar in those drinks or some real nasty mold can spring up inside those tubes…

      3. John Beech

        We’re 125 miles away from grandsons (and daughter and son-in-law) and naturally, we miss them terribly but Facetime has been a Godsend. Christmas will be a year since we’ve held them but facts are facts and staying safe is more important. We’ve held out this long, so we can hold out another year for enough vaccinations in the population to make things safe.

      1. polecat

        Don’t ya know .. you’re supposed to “DO WHAT YOUR TOLD!!” .. ei – sit, huddled in fear, in one’s own hovel .. if one EVEN has a hovel to huddle in .. eating a tanksgiving bowl of Cold Nancy grubs (iced-but sans creamed) and what looks to be something sorta, kinda, maybe like ‘tasty wheat’, as you await your emplacement as a useful $green nu dealer’s$ coppertop! Any a questions, ratcheted lower classes??

        As for Our illustrious ‘All-Animals-are-Equal’ Leaders’ – both the the blu ish monkeys .. and their compatriots, the red howlers?? THEY will feelz your pain, as they do their ‘do as WE SAY!, not as WE Do’!!’ holidayz antics. Just ask the tony highcloud-swaubites .. they’ll TELLS yas!

        I Fucking Hate Them All!

    2. CletracSteve

      We’re avoiding traveling within our clan so picked Sunday as a zoom feast, and sending care packages of less perishable foods ahead of time to share. Consideration of a uber-eats delivered surprise entre is being considered, with the employment of gig-workers being the hold back at this time.

    3. foghorn longhorn

      US Surgeon General: Loss of taste, smell helps differentiate COVID-19 from flu

      Home Covid Test

      1) Open a can of beer and try to smell it.

      2) If you can smell the beer, drink it to see if you can taste it.

      3) If you can smell it and taste it, this confirms you don’t have Covid.

      Last night I did the test 19 times and all were negative.
      Tonight, I am going to do the test again, because I woke up with a headache and feeling like I might be coming down with something.

      I am so worried.

      1. bwilli123

        I think a sample of one is not scientifically valid, so I would suggest there needs to be many more replications of this test before we can rely on this method.
        I will henceforth be doing my bit for Science.

        1. Kurtismayfield

          I do a similar test every night .replacing beer with three fingers of brown liquid and two cubes of frozen water. So now your sample size has doubled.

          1. Fiery Hunt

            I dunno about that test.
            I couldn’t taste, smell nor think after mine last night. But no frozen water so maybe…

            False positive? ?

            As per Elon, will retest this afternoon.

      2. ambrit

        Watch out foghorn! Your symptoms match those of having taken a flu vaccine shot! Check out those containers of beer. If of recent “vintage,” they might have ‘vaccine’ incorporated at the bottling plant as part of the “Anti Trump Supporters Culling Protocol.”
        I suggest utilizing the “Boilermaker Safe Drinking Method.”

      3. polecat

        Well, I can testify that, upon sampling a taste, at the time of bottling, of polecat’s Loganberry Ginger Mead … I deem meself Imperfectly FINE! … having sensed the peculiarly devine fruity bouquet, that only logans can provide! So I’m All GooD.

        … the makes the third outta THREE of the Pandemic Vintage’s of `2020

        think I might do a special batch of ‘Winter’s Coming’ Medlar
        ….. That sounds pretty good.

  2. The Rev Kev

    “‘Today I Learned’: 40 Interesting Things People Haven’t Learned At School”

    #17 that in the Falklands, an abandoned minefield has accidentally become a penguin sanctuary.

    Yesterday I Learned: That the people in the Falklands are now celebrating over the removal of the last of those land mines from the 1982 war-

    1. griffen

      #39 is pretty funny. You can’t just state the point in proper vernacular.

      Please exit this room immediately, I will have a quickly bad outcome after Taco He$l…

      1. rowlf

        I think it was in the 1990s News Of The Weird blurb on an airline passenger from Germany had a moment of distress and in a panic tried to enter the forward lavatory by the flight deck saying he had a bomb in his butt. It was an English For Runaways moment at the wrong location.

    2. Oh

      Maybe the British will pickup the tab since they love Falklands so much. Too bad they can’t bill maggie; she’s been taken care of by the maggots.

  3. timbers

    Mirror, Mirror on the wall…self projection can be the ugliest of all…

    Hillary Clinton:
    “The country is dangerously unprepared for a range of threats, not just future pandemics but also an escalating climate crisis and multidimensional challenges from China and Russia. Its industrial and technological strength has atrophied, its vital supply chains are vulnerable, its alliances are frayed, and its government is hollowed out.”

    Barack Obama:
    On Gandhi, the former President wrote that the Congress leader has “a nervous, unformed quality about him, as if he were a student who’d done the coursework and was eager to impress the teacher but deep down lacked either the aptitude or the passion to master the subject”.

    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      Yeesh…I might have to borrow this Obama masterpiece. Did you know Mitch McConnell was mean and unwilling to listen to “reason”?

    2. Oh

      Rumor has it that Rahul’s saying “Obama is a student eager to impress but lacks aptitude, But he made up for it by sucking up to the Teacher at Harvard.”

      1. Jerri-Lynn Scofield Post author

        And you can now click on the via for the source – which I thought I had included, but did not.

        1. polecat

          Eye really like those uh, er .. for lack of a better phrase – ‘ocular circumferential protuberances’. Waaaay fashionable! .. in a Hungrygames kind of way.

    1. Quentin

      Read it today in duffelblog, tomorrow in the Philadelphia Inquirer and the next day the NY Times, followed by rolling, eye-blinding commentary by NHS and CIA talking heads all over the place. Please accept my heartfelt excuses for my nasty cynicism.

    2. a different chris

      Well Dufffelblog is a satire site so that’s not true at all!!

      Sigh. It’s probably 3x that.

    3. timbers

      Biden still has a son that’s alive, right? Biden ought to make him join the military to set an example. After all Biden has a point – war of aggression IS normal for the US.

      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        Are you joking?

        Hunter in preparation for a political career joined the navy in a staff position a few years back. Guess what happened next?

      2. nycTerrierist

        agreed, President’s and NatSec advisors’ families
        should be required to see combat — bc ‘skin in the game’

        1. NotTimothyGeithner

          The problem is the sociopaths only care about their kids in as much as they are flouting the rules. Take a guy like Trump. He would have moved heaven and Earth to keep Don Jr. out of uniform but at the same time barely knows his name.

          Automatic wealth taxes during times of war is the only thing they would care about as that is the measuring stick.

          1. tegnost

            That’s a great idea, how about a 10% surcharge per police action per year on incomes over 400,000 and per billion in assets, including corporations that file taxes in the US (that way if they lie, they’re lying to the irs so just like with the ACA non compliance results in concrete material punishment) for those of us lucky enough to have that much? That would probably make some money for the treasury just like student loans do!

        2. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

          People opposed to the use of their tax dollars to kill women and children in foreign countries are calling for the nation’s election laws to be upheld and for every legal vote to be counted. This after the president’s newly appointed top military leader released a statement today to all Department of Defense personnel under his command:

          “Ending wars requires compromise and partnership. We met the challenge; we gave it our all. Now, it’s time to come home. We are not a people of perpetual war — it is the antithesis of everything for which we stand and for which our ancestors fought. All wars must end.”

          1. Aumua

            It’s a great sentiment, and it’s hard for me to argue with it. But I do kind of wonder, why now? After the election that Trump lost. I just have some difficulty trusting these words.

            But hey I’m all for it! Let’s cut the pentagon’s budget in half right away, to start with. Move those funds into social welfare programs. How does that sound, Mr. New Defense Secretary? It’s thanksgiving, so lets talk turkey.

            1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

              I guess it’s absolutely on-brand for Team D to declare a winner instead of respecting the election laws that clearly state that the election is certified (i.e. made official) by the states.

              Headlines, year 2000 “Gore Refuses to Concede”.
              Headlines, year 2020 “Trump is a Delusional Maniac for Refusing to Concede”.

              My read is that Trump’s 2016 win was unexpected, he had no infrastructure in place to form a government, having scythed through the Republicans, so he had Chris Christie install a team of the usual R Party stalwarts. Huge tactical error. I think he’s a slow learner and not a very hard worker, so it took him forever to recognize that the great unmoving mass of FBI, CIA, Justice, and DOD holdovers were working against him. Of course they were, multi-trillion $ rice bowls were in play. Then there were the 3 years of relentless McCarthy-style Red smears, making it very tricky politically to announce a change in a policy that was designed to defend Germany from Brezhnev’s tanks.

              1. Aumua

                Just my personal opinion that Biden did in fact win. So I’m going with that. I sure as hell didn’t vote for him, and I support Trump’s right to challenge the results. That being said, this sudden declaration of world peace and the end of Empire doesn’t seem all that genuine to me.

                1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

                  It says a lot that we cannot imagine an American leader can exist who actually believes that spending hundreds of billions to defend Europe against an enemy that disbanded in 1989 is ludicrous, that at a minimum they should pay for that themselves, and who thinks incinerating a goat herder holding a flintlock 8,000 miles away with a $2 million dollar missile is a bad use of taxpayer funds.

                    1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

                      Meantime they are in “‘censor everything!” mode trying to install the very architects of the Iraq War. Raise of hands, NC, how many people think that was a really clever idea and the right way to spend 2 thousand thousand million dollars? Anyone? Anyone? Beuhler?

    4. pjay

      Reading Filkins’ New Yorker piece followed by Kristof, one can examine a continuum of liberal propaganda regarding Trump’s firings. Filkins represents the more “reasonable” argument; it’s mainly about troop withdrawals. Of course, it’s not that we shouldn’t get out of Afghanistan at *some* point, but we just can’t up and irresponsibly leave all at once … etc. Hmm, where have I heard that one before? Regarding declassification of intelligence related to Russiagate, he is among the “adults in the room” arguing that such a move

      “…could damage America’s relationships with its allies and hinder intelligence gathering. The former senior national-security official [of course] said that Trump’s principal goal is to release a trove of intelligence that he believes could disprove suspicions he worked with Russian agents during the 2016 election—or, despite the unanimous findings of America’s intelligence agencies, could disprove that Russia interfered at all.”

      NC readers know what “unanimous findings of America’s intelligence agencies” means. But no matter…

      Kristof, of course, was a key cog in the Russiagate coup attempt (the real one – not the fake one Trump is supposed to be attempting). His NY Times opinion piece warns us that Russia, China, Iran, and all of our other enemies are going to take advantage of Trump’s firings and move against us. Or is it that Trump is putting “hardliners” in place to start a war with Iran before he goes? I’m not sure, but I trust Nick Kristof when he warns us about bad stuff!

      Kristof’s ravings does make Filkins sound somewhat reasonable by comparison. I see it as the “radical flank effect” applied to liberal propaganda.

      1. The Rev Kev

        About Kristof of the Kristof clan. A Harvard classmate has said: “I’m not surprised to see him emerge as the moral conscience of our generation of journalists. I am surprised to see him as the Indiana Jones of our generation of journalists.” That Harvard classmate’s name? Jeffrey Toobin. Now where do I know that name from?

        1. anon in so cal

          “Nicholas Kristof’s Burden: First class travel and $30,000 speakers fee makes reporting on poverty easier to endure”

          Kristof, regarding Russiagate and Ukrainegate: “Trump and his supporters simply make assertions without regard to reality”

          Magnanimous to say he’s an idiot.

  4. PlutoniumKun

    Experience: my parachute failed Guardian

    Such a horror story. It is surprising how many people do survive ‘chute failures. A friend of my brother (a key skydiver) went straight into a tree – after a year of intensive treatment he actually went back to sport parachute jumping. But my brother was also first to the body of a young woman who went straight into the ground and died instantly – although perhaps mercifully it is thought she had blacked out with a brain haemorrhage on existing the aircraft so was probably unaware.

    1. foghorn longhorn

      May not have taken a hemorrhage, the mind is a funny thing.
      When I was a young lad of 9 years old, the basketball got stuck behind the backboard on a neighbor’s garage roof.
      Went up and retrieved it and started doing slam dunks from up there.
      Well the whole backboard ripped off the roof and little foghorn did a face first header to the concrete below.
      Remember the oh sh!t feeling when it let go, but blacked out and don’t remember the impact.
      60 stitches in the forehead and some hellacious bruises on both knees confirmed it wasn’t a dream.

      1. Janie

        Wow, 60 stitches! It’s a wonder any boy of that age from our bygone era made it. I remember boys playing mumblety-peg, but instead of pegs the other boy’s for was the target to miss by a small margin. They made stilts. They jumped off the chicken coop.The girls played jacks.

        1. foghorn longhorn

          We were a hardy lot for sure.
          Remember granny chunking me in the back of her ’59 vw bug and hauling azz to the e.r.
          Under our current healthcare system, pretty sure the folks would have been bankrupt before I hit my teen years.
          Very much remember mublety-peg, with very sharp knives.

    2. flora

      My parachute opened. I caught my left foot wrong on landing. Crutches for months. (And here’s a shout out to the gallant young men on the ground spotting the divers who rushed to my aid, picked me up, and whisked me to the hospital for care. No kidding. Wonderful young men.) But at least I didn’t land in the trees/woods that surrounded the landing site. (Landing in trees is a nightmare horror to even contemplate.) Never tried another jump.

      1. rowlf

        My impression from when I was parachuting was the trees try to reach out to the parachutist. Very scary as the trees where almost animated.

      2. OIFVet

        I have a permanent scar next to my eye after my last jump. I misjudged my LZ approach height, and started running out of soft ground to land on. I figured falling from 25 feet on grass is safer than trying to stick a perfect landing on concrete, so I did the full flare and just fell from the sky. I carried too much speed so I couldn’t stay upright, fell face-first and the safety glasses cut my face. Plus, hyperextended some tendons in the left hip and pelvis. All things considered, limping for a week and a small scar are nothing compared to other things that could go wrong during a jump.

        PS I can’t help but wonder why the jump instructor didn’t ditch the primary chute prior to deploying the emergency chute. Hubris or panic? Regardless, as an instructor he should have the wherewithal to assure safe full deployment of the emergency chute.

  5. William Beyer

    How can Georgia be laboriously hand-counting ballots, when the only paper record from the voting process is a receipt with a QR code? What am I missing?

    1. jefemt

      Very reasonable question.

      I do not understand block-chain.

      Apparently, it is a chain of custody technology that does not allow adulteration, change, hacking.

      I feel very certain (I am a cynic) that it IS hackable.

      If not, if it is truly set in stone, inviolate, one would think that it is the perfect technology for voting.

      Maybe the rub is in the tallying and reporting.

      Very very easy to have distrust in modern tech-driven elections.

      How long would it take to hand count, with no mechanization, 150 million ballots?

      Mind you, I work nearly every day in various County courthouses throughout our state— I trust the Clerks and their staff and volunteers.

      Its the slimy tech companies, their vendors, and their backers that I trust to do all the wrong things with consistency, aplomb, and an agenda.

      And don’t get me started on the candidates running for a place in our system of ‘representative democracy’

      1. Aumua

        As far as I know blockchain for voting security is just in the idea stage so far, and has not been used in this election.

      2. vlade

        Everything is hackable, but with the current known technology BC is pretty tampering proof.

        That’s actually not it’s problem. The problem is that it suffer from the GIGO (garbage in, garbage out). And, because it’s dropping some human inputs in favour of computer inputs, which are notoriously easy to hack, you get something that is tamperproof but more likely to be wrong anyways.

        BC is a solution looking for a problem.

    2. Skip Intro

      Exactly, I think they are laboriously recanvassing the local black box voting simulators, possibly eliminating ‘errors’ in the tabulation phase… I had the same question. Georgia is notorious…

    3. marym

      Here’s more information. This is a full audit of the presidential votes, not a recount.

      In Georgia “a recount is conducted using the same scanners that read and tallied the unofficial results already released.”

      The current process is an audit. “The specific type of audit that Georgia has chosen is known as “risk-limiting.” It involves checking paper ballots against machine tallies to ensure the accuracy of those machines.”

      In yesterdays Links I posted links to live posts and live streams for the recount/audit, and to a statement from the Carter Center that they will be observing.

      1. Dirk77

        So the audit tests for consistency. That would seem to be ok if the machine’s programming, etc., have not been modified since the election. Is there any guarantee of that?

        1. marym

          What Georgia calls recount is a second scan of the ballots to see if it produces the same results as the original scan. I don’t have any information on what steps may be taken to protect hardware/software integrity for a recount.

          What they’re doing now (which is informally being referred to as recount, but which is an audit according to the terminology on the website) is counting the actual ballots (paper marked by the voter or generated by the touchscreen system and verifiable by the voter) and comparing the totals to those produced by the original scan.

  6. Cocomaan

    Wasn’t Lawrence Lessig recommending that we have faithless electoral college voters in 2016 because of the danger of trump?

    Now he’s complaining about the republicans trying to also mess with the electoral college system?

    Larry has outlived his usefulness as a scholar. He has no perspective.

    1. Chris Smith

      None of these people have principles. Seriously, their position is always “what gives me the advantage in this moment.” Family-blog them.

      1. cocomaan

        Thank you to flora, KM, Max and Chris, for giving me the confirmation I needed after holding my nose to read Lessig’s latest hackery.

        Last time I ever willingly read what he says. Next time I read it, I’ll have to have my eyes pried open like Clockwork Orange.

    1. Samuel Conner

      I know people who are anxious about reports of antifa violence but are pretty complacent about the pandemic. In fact, I feel confident they would reckon that media are hyping the risks of the pandemic but do not perceive a similar coverage “bias” regarding violence at protests (echoing DJT’s public statements, which downplay the wide scale of the pandemic and focus on anecdotes of disorder at protests). In terms of injuries and fatalities per involved person, the protests in aggregate have been far safer than coming down with the virus. It’s a bizarre inversion of the actual risks these people face.

      It’s a single anecdote that aligns with a recent article, linked at NC, that proposed that “perception of agency” is important in people’s perceptions of hazards, and that people with different political orientations tend to weight “agency” differently.

      1. cocomaan

        There’s also people who are afraid of Covid but are obese or are frittering their life away making spreadsheets for their corporate overlord.

        The fear machine goes on and on.

          1. neo-realist

            It may not feel “over hyped” to law abiding people who are black, since quite of few of those killed are, in many cases, unarmed.

      2. Dr. John Carpenter

        It reminds me of how many people were absolutely convinced Bin Laden was sending all kinds of t’rrists to whatever fly spec burg they lived in to do something nefarious. Or you could switch Bin Laden for Putin if you want to be more contemporary. Exact same template really.

        1. Glen

          Our in-laws in Texas were convinced this was going to happen to them so they bought pistols for all the grand kids (one of them was 4 at the time). They blew their tops when we told them global warming was real and they should be much more worried about coastal flooding. They pretty much told us we were insane.

          Their house has flooded three times since then.

      1. Oh

        Just like Biden to milk the cancer cow. What’s worse is that most non profits fighting “the war on cancer” seem to be living off it with less and less going to the intended purpose.

        1. Maritimer

          Non-profit, a perfect demonstration of our mal-functioning and inadequate language. There can be loads of profit in non-profits, it is just a question of who it goes to.
          Another great one is non-government organization, NGOs, with many of these getting their loot from,yes, the Government. Mainly set up to coop whatever social issue they address.

      2. griffen

        It would be better to donate to the V foundation for research instead. They actually do the research.

        I’ve first hand experience with people losing to this pernicious enemy and its varying forms. Damn you cancer !

        1. polecat

          The Biden family’$ grifting is a cancer that will metastasized, if Joe’s elected.

          You can (food) bank on it! .. if any remain viable.

      3. Procopius

        When you get down to the last two paragraphs, they explain that:

        … the bulk of the money supporting the partnerships it promotes came in the form of indirect pledges.

        That money did not go directly to the nonprofit but instead has been managed by the participating companies and organizations to fund their research and work. Biden’s group has used its platform and Biden’s appearances to promote the partnerships.

        I was quite ready to think something shady was going on and angry that they devoted so much space to implying that. Just another Russian/Republican/Democrat propaganda piece. I hate the media.

  7. a different chris

    She was on a two week road trip “vacation”

    Real Americans don’t have the ability to put together two consecutive weeks of vacation, unless of course they are the Ruling Class! So Gotcha, Ms. Meka…uh…Mukatdin… Mukunov… whatever the furrin name you have is! Russian (or are we back to the Ukrainians again, checks notes) ah yes Russian spy!

  8. a different chris

    I love the Fettermans. but:

    You’re now going to have a leader who does not constantly demean people, make fun of them, make a mockery of them — that’s going to be the first change.

    Has she met Joe Biden? Well I guess he doesn’t do it “constantly”, now that Trump has reset the parameters on everything normal.

  9. JacobiteInTraining

    Spent the last few days doing as little digitally as possible. refreshed…although the tasks I took care of were pretty grueling, done as they were in often frigid temps, occasional high winds, and rain – cleared out as much brush and brambles from the mtn compound as we could. (as I had gotten a little lazy during growing season – the boy performed admirably, though, and truly earned his $15/hr ‘help the old man catch up to nature’ rates, lol)

    Raked up the first batch of alder leaves, and threw them into several piles to compost for next year’s mulch…and then spread multiple pickup loads of commercial manure/compost on all fruit trees, raised beds, herb gardens, and ornamental flowerbeds. I can now focus on some judicious pruning some time a little later.

    On the way home (Mason County Washington – voted Trump by a nose) I stopped to take a leak in a port-o-potty. Someone had written ‘Trump – 2020’ in sharpie on the inside of the door.

    Someone else had smeared…errmm….feces all over it.

    And thusly, I was welcomed back to 2020… :/

      1. JacobiteInTraining

        You too!

        …and if I might be so bold, what is your personal favorite edible perennial in your garden? And/or your favorite flower or bulb?

        I’m making my late-Fall list of new experiments to try for next Spring, my USDA plant hardiness zone is in the ‘8-ish’ category. (aggravated by higher elevation) but my new favorite that I found just loves it up there…’Hinnomaki Red’ gooseberries, put in as a lower-height companion surrounding the ‘Ashmead’s Kernel’ apples. Produced a surprising amount of really tasty berries even the first year of planting, and the oldest of them…3 years and counting…do a good job resisting the nibbling of the deer and continue to put on new growth and good berry production impressively each year.

        Mache experiment seemed to go well, though we shall see how good they do with their self-sowing and late winter/early spring activities. For new flowers, I failed miserably with Sweet Williams…but the Hollyhocks, unexpectedly, seemed to thrive!

        1. Janie

          Berries of all sorts do well in Willamette valley. We have about 20 blueberry bushes, maybe 10 varieties (early, midseason, late). Some have great fall foliage.

          Steve Solomon, founder of Territorial Seeds, in Vegetable Gardening West of the Cascades (buy it if you haven’t already), refers to the original inhabitants of our area. We know they had contacts with agricultural groups in the southwest but there is no evidence that they adopted the practice. He theorizes that they tried seed crops but failed, choosing fruits, berries and nuts. No evidence, just observation that you get more yield for your efforts with trees, bushes and vines.

          We planted a tree collard this year. So far, it’s good.

          1. JacobiteInTraining

            oooh, nice – thanks, I do not have a copy of that book but now I soon will! :)

            tree collards…added to list!

            I actually grew up on a family blueberry (amongst a lot of other things) farm, not all that far from Territorial. Sadly, I have no blueberries at my mtn retreat…quite possibly because of a childhood ‘scarred’ by the need to care for, water, and then pick…tons and tons of blues. Heehee…

            1. Janie

              Yes, heh heh to the blueberry suggestion in your case. (Came up after my PS below.)

              As Laughingsong says, raspberries are good and we use strawberries as ground cover.

          2. Laughingsong

            We’re in the Willamette Valley too, our blueberries and raspberries do pretty well, especially considering that Himself and I are not the best gardeners. We also have a double sized raised bed for strawberries, and last year planted our first fruit tree, a frost peach. The other raised beds are for veg: greens, spinach, broccoli, peas, peppers, tomatoes, and cukes in rotation.

            Recently we started buying mixes of local wildflower seeds from Silver Falls Seed company, and throwing them into the thick mulch around early March, then again in mid-May. It’s been really interesting.

            1. Janie

              Thanks for Silver Falls source. Will try them
              We’ve had poor luck with peaches. Please keep us posted in years to come 9n the success of Frost.

          3. Janie

            PS. Candytuft with heathers and a few rocks make great borders. Shear the candytuft right after bloom and it will bloom again. Long stems on the ground root easily – freebies!

  10. griffen

    Embedded in the link to the MAGA march is a video interview with varying DJT supporters. Worth a few minutes.

    I guess since the movie Braveheart was sorta fact based, one could equate William Wallace to the Donald ? Seems a stretch to me though.

    1. montanamaven

      Yes, that interview with the Trump supporters is worth it. They are calm, focused and realistic. They will take their fight to their “elected officials” and “get more Republicans elected”. One woman drove all the way from California and said that you won’t see them riot. “Republicans don’t riot.” I found another rally in Tucson where they were all having a good time, partying a little, praying a little. Nice regular people. If you go to you will see footage of these same regular people in D.C. getting sucker punched and getting firecrackers in cans thrown at them while they are eating dinner. There are edited versions of the white haired guy getting sucker punched and kicked while on the ground until his face is bloody – that shows him swinging his arms before the attack. But the longer version I saw had them chasing him and he finally turns to confront them swinging his hands. Then he gets punched and kicked. Proud Boys and Antifa like to rumble. But most of the 100,000+ people at the rally seemed to be genuinely good people. This is so sad. I don’t see Biden Harris unifying. I see them using these street fighters to keep division going. I found myself almost afraid to write even this. Now that is really sad.

    2. Jessica

      The Braveheart movie wasn’t much more fact based than one of DJT’s tweets. Much was shifted in order to create a homophobic portrait of the prince (Edward II) as a despicable f****t. I assume that that was Mel Gibson’s doing.
      Braveheart’s Rambo-like one-man assassination squad toward the end of the movie was simply invented out of thin air. Again, Mel Gibson’s?
      In real life, the wedding of the supposedly effete prince took place after Edward Longshanks was already dead. The princess whom the movie shows William Wallace cuckolding the prince with was 8 years old (and in France) when William Wallace died.
      Oddly, almost none of the people portrayed in the movie spoke English. The English court still spoke French.
      Oh, and Edward Longshanks’s plan to alter the Scottish gene pool is of the 20th century, not the 12th or 13th. The whole concept of some kind of loyalty to the English people or the Scottish people came later. Loyalty then was to a regime.
      Little is actually documented about William Wallace. The one big victorious battle, the one big losing battle, his death. He probably had spent time in France and may have trained as an archer in Edward Longshank’s army. Maybe.
      He is more historical than King Arthur, but more legendary than later Scots and English nobles.

    1. The Rev Kev

      Saw that New York Times story earlier and it was a crock. Al-Qaeda’s Number Two? In Iran? Al-Qaeda hates and despises the Iranians from what I hear because they are Shiite. Any operative from Al-Qaeda would find themselves being turned into a smear along a brick wall in a very short order of time. After, what is the phrase? Oh yeah – (air quotes) enhanced interrogation. (/air quotes)

      1. nechaev

        Front-page ‘NY Times’ story on Iran-Al Qaeda links is dishonest — and could help justify a U.S./Israeli attack

        …The article reeks of dishonesty. At least one of its four authors, Ronen Bergman, an Israeli (who has lavished praise on the Israel lobby AIPAC), has sources in Israel’s spy apparatus, which immediately raises suspicion. The report’s only sources are those unnamed “intelligence officials,” who provide suspiciously precise details, reminiscent of a movie script…

      2. km

        Correcto. Keep on mind that Iran is in combat with al Qaeda (protected and aided by the United States).in Syria.

        For an al Qaeda leader to hole up in Iran would make as much sense as a housecat to take shelter in a yard full of pitbulls.

    2. km

      Translation: we murdered some dude in Iran in order to provoke a response so we can make war on Iran for the benefit of Saudi Arabia and Israel.

    3. Aumua

      The attack was carried out by Israeli operatives at the behest of the United States, according to four of the officials. It is unclear what role if any was played by the United States…


    4. Maritimer

      The gift that keeps on giving……… the War/Terror/Scare/Security Rackets, now joined by the up and coming Health Racket.

  11. The Rev Kev

    “Armenians torch their homes on land ceded to Azerbaijan”

    It is only a few houses here and there. One guy taking on the news said that he built his house thirty years ago and was not going to let someone else take it so he burnt it down. Amateurs. When Israel puled out of Gaza back in 2007, the Israeli forces bulldozed thousands of houses, community buildings, apartment buildings & places of worship and even the corpses in Jewish cemeteries were exhumed and reburied in Israel. They left virtually nothing for the Palestinians to reclaim.

  12. Phacops

    Thanksgiving . . . . . fewer leftovers.

    Who doesn’t love Thanksgiving leftovers? Once the turkey is picked over, making soup stock is a breeze, and I add back in the leftover roasted veggies that were under the bird. Plus all those tasty side dishes!

    I have relatives who will not eat leftovers and maybe they never learned that some leftovers, like stews and sauces, are so tasty as the flavors mingle. Plus leftovers mean that meal prep consumes less time.

    1. Stillfeelinthebern


      Leftovers ARE the highlight of Thanksgiving. My family eats them for the next 3 days. No cooking so we have time to play games and hike, etc. But not this year: (

    2. Laughingsong

      Actually this year we decided to start with the stew since it will be just me and Himself. Easier to preserve and freeze if we tire of it too soon. We of course will be scaling down the size as well. We are trying to keep the snacks on the healthy side, fewer baked goods, but also plan some nice toddies.

      And much like Jacobite above, we have much put-the-garden-to-sleep work, clearing/cutting down dead stuff. I have 3 (free!) deliveries of leaves from the city which allows us to put down a thick sheet mulch on the entire yard. After we dig out as much metastasized Passionflower from our blueberry bushes as possible, then prune and fertilize, that is.

    3. Amfortas the hippie

      i’m a grinch for all these winter holidays in general(xmas music, jingle bells and cinnamon smells, and red and green everywhere…as well as the enforced JOY, rampant hyperconsumerism/stampedes), but maybe my biggest bone to pick is the menu: turkey, dressing, cranberry, etc.
      i find it terminally boring,lol.
      i like turkey on sandwiches…and dressing’s cool for a carb shot during the SAD winter depressions…but it always ends up dry.
      i perennially lobby for some cajun seafood thing…or some italiano rustica thing….anything, really.
      the moratorium on the usual holiday activity is one of the only bright spots for me in the covid disaster.
      Brother and his bunch….and other assorted relations…won’t be trekking way out here to spread the flu or whatever gutbug is going around(every darn year…and my bunch doesn’t get it, because we hammer on the Protocols…no hugs, please…and we all social distanced even before covid)
      mom will, as always, make a dry, boring Ham….and i’ll freeze the hambone for beans later.
      I’ll be making Shrimp Dianne over here, and maybe a pot of gumbo(recipe/technique from the coonass side of my family), and eat on that for a week.

      i’m just treading water, waiting for this frelling year to be over…october through january are always the worst months for me…for a lot of reasons.
      on the up side, it’s the middle of november, and i’m still picking a wide variety of peppers…both in the greenhouse, as well as out in the beds.
      it would be cool if it rained again, though.

      1. lordkoos

        We were hoping to have a non-traditional meal this year, a small roast and/or Salmon but my aged mother insists on turkey, so we’re going with it. I don’t mind Turkey at all if it’s only once a year (plus a week of leftovers).

      2. Ella

        When I lived for a short while in south Florida, I hosted Thanksgiving with a fish/seafood feast.

        Told friends I invited the menu. People showed up but weren’t thrilled with break from tradition

        Man are humans bad at adapting to change.

      3. Brunches with Cats

        Amfortas, “some italiano rustica thing?” Like spaghetti carbonara?

        Probably Calvin Trillan’s most memorable column (The New Yorker, 1981), usually comes up around this time of year, in which he proposed that Thanksgiving turkey be replaced with spaghetti carbonara. He detested turkey, described it as “something college dormitories use to punish students for hanging around on Sunday.”

        It does not take much historical research to uncover the fact that nobody knows if the Pilgrims really ate turkey at the first Thanksgiving dinner. The only thing we know for sure about what the Pilgrims ate is that it couldn’t have tasted very good. Even today, well brought-up English girls are taught by their mothers to boil all veggies for at least a month and a half, just in case one of the dinner guests turns up without his teeth…

        It would also not require much digging to discover that Christopher Columbus, the man who may have brought linguine with clam sauce to this continent, was from Genoa, and obviously would have sooner acknowledged that the world was shaped like an isosceles triangle than to have eaten the sort of things that the English Puritans ate. Righting an ancient wrong against Columbus, a great man who certainly did not come all this way only to have a city in Ohio named after him, would be a serious historical contribution. Also, I happen to love spaghetti carbonara.

        Couldn’t find the original New Yorker article, but here’s a link to the full text in a Miami rag:

        Cin cin!

    4. Harold

      Leftovers are definitely the best part. There are never enough — and we give a lot away. Every Thanksgiving I regret the next day not having made two turkeys — or even three, totally forgetting how I had slaved for a week running around to different stores assembling the ingredients for all the side dishes and gravy and killed my back by being on my feet all day making the dinner.. I don’t know how my grandmother did it. She never complained, even into her eighties. It’s not a completely idle wish.

      velleità (Italian) = a wish or aspiration unlikely to be fulfilled.

    5. WhoaMolly

      Do not recall any “wastage” in the 75-plus Thanksgivings that I have celebrated.

      We have one big dinner on the day and enjoy leftovers for next three days. Then we start on the turkey soup…

      I don’t expect family to visit until late 2021 at best. ZoomGiving–in my opinion– is less than thin. It’s just “an annoying call with relatives” h.t. Scott Adams. No football games on TV this year. No one cares.

      1. newcatty

        No one cares… hmmm, there are still things to be thankful for. Or, there still is hope for many human’s breaking free of the circuses with gladiators. Though bread is scarce for, alas, many. Ice cream is still available, though if you know the “right” people.

        No waste of any of our almost as many Thanksgivings, either. Leftovers are cherished and, with some creativity, can be repurposed for delicious dishes. Also, the classic sandwiches and soup are cool. We like using tortillas a lot, too…from “wraps” to enchiladas or burros. Guess living in AZ has its influence. Enjoy Greek salads with Turkey or pasta with Turkey instead of chicken. Turkey curry is amazingly good. OK…just wanted to chime in for “waste not, want not” (pick it up and eat it). Nod to Pretenders. Only us two, but include two kitties, so four. Like so many, family gathering post-poned for?

    6. wilroncanada

      Re leftovers:
      We have friends in he nearest town about 15 minutes drive away. The husband will not eat leftovers. In the last year, we have had 2 ham ends, with at least 3 meals of meat before the remains go into soup-making. We have also had the rest of 3 turkeys, all of which have provided a week’s worth of meals before soup.
      We have another family friend who doesn’t eat leftovers. Unfortunately, they are more than a ferry ride away in suburban Vancouver. So, wasted food.

    7. Lex

      I feel like our mothers ruined us for turkey, or was that just my mom? It was a once-a-year grand occasion to have a turkey, so our moms went out and bought the largest turkey they could afford, and then found dozens of ways to to use the leftover meat. It got old… and dry. These days I’d rather have salmon or a honey-baked ham. I had a friend whose family did a roast goose every year. I thought that sounded like a nice change.

      But I do like chicken and there are a few tricks to keeping birds moist while they cook, that applies to turkey just as well.

      Unless you’re super fond of eating turkey, buy the smallest one you can find, or just the breast. Organic turkey breast disappears here weeks before Thanksgiving; get your order in early.

      Thaw the bird completely bringing it up to room temperature, rinse, and go over the turkey inside and out looking for what might have been missed in processing, like feathers.

      Wet brine the bird. I use a half cup kosher salt and the same of sugar to every 4 quarts of cold water. It’s a simple brine solution and effective every time. I clean the largest 5 gallon bucket I can find, load brine solution up to halfway and submerge the bird the same day I plan to cook it. Maybe I’ll leave an 8-12 lb. turkey in the brine for a couple of hours.

      Remove the bird and dry it thoroughly inside and out. Use your hand to gently (don’t tear the skin!) separate the skin from the breast all the way back to include the outside of the thighs.

      Load some softened butter into your hand and slather the butter under the skin all over the breast meat and thighs. Tie together the legs and fold back the wings.

      Use something sharp to poke several small holes through the skin into the fat deposits around the breast and thighs. This will help insure that the skin is crispy, as the fat melts while cooking and escapes out the holes and drips down the skin.

      Rub olive oil all over the bird, and season as simply or elaborately as you like. Keep in mind all the salt you used in the brining.

      Very important! Cook your turkey breast-side down for the first half of your cooking time. As the fat melts internally it will head for the bottom of the bird to the meat most people complain is too dry.

      Flip the bird halfway through to breast-side up and keep your eyes on how quickly the skin of the breast is browning. If it browns too quickly, tent some aluminum foil over it while the meat comes up to 160.

      Nay, you say, 165 is the proper temperature. Remember that meat continues to cook even after you’ve removed it from the oven. Get the turkey to 160, remove it from the oven (and remove the aluminum foil tent if it was necessary), and let it rest for at least 10 – 20 minutes or more before you think about cutting into it.

      Those steps have never failed me. The bird meat is delicious and moist every time. But there are only two people in this house and both have a limited appetite for turkey. Cornish game hens are nice.

      Bon Appetit!

      1. montanamaven

        We spatchcock ours. Beauty of this is that you remove the backbone which makes a great turkey broth ahead of time since you salt the spatchcocked turkey on a cookie pan and let it sit for 2 days. Makes super great gravy and ahead of time. Spatchcocking also takes half the time. Food 52 recipe.
        But I’ve done your way too and it too works really well. Just more work.

    1. Ella

      I’m certain my daughter and partner had it in November 2019. I suspect my daughter caught it at school from her teacher who caught it from her niece who had underlying health issues and contracted a virus while in Nepal (and subsequently died, age 20 something)

    2. ewmayer

      That headline is way overblown – they found *antibodies* to SARS-CoV-2 in retrospective tissue-sample re-examinations. The nut paragraph:

      Die Forscher untersuchten Tests von 959 Personen, die zwischen September 2019 und März 2020 an freiwilligen Screenings für eine mögliche Tumorerkrankung der Lungen teilgenommen hatten. In insgesamt gut elf Prozent der seinerzeit entnommenen Proben konnte nun Antikörper gegen das Coronavirus festgestellt worden. 14 Prozent der nachträglich positiv auf das Coronavirus getesteten Proben waren im September 2019 entnommen worden, 30 Prozent der positiven Tests stammten aus dem Februar 2020. Mehr als die Hälfte aller positiven Proben (53,2 Prozent) stammten aus der norditalienischen Region Lombardei.


      The researchers examined samples from 959 people who had participated in volunteer screenings for possible lung cancer between September 2019 and March 2020. Antibodies against the coronavirus were found in eleven percent of the taken samples. 14 percent of the retrospective positive samples were taken in September 2019 and 30 percent came from February 2020. More than half of the positives came from the northern Italian region of Lombardy.

      The problem? Cross-reactivity is a thing:

      Prepandemic coronavirus antibodies may react to COVID-19 | Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy, University of Minnesota

      Two preliminary retrospective studies in the United Kingdom, sub-Sahara Africa, and the United States suggest that some people who were never infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 have cross-reactive antibodies against it—perhaps from previous exposure to similar human coronaviruses.

      The first study, published late last week in Science, was the result of an accidental discovery by researchers at Francis Crick Institute and University College London while testing the performance of sensitive COVID-19 antibody tests by comparing the blood of COVID-19–infected donors with that of those who had not had the disease.

      They found that blood samples from some noninfected donors—particularly children—contained antibodies that could recognize both SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, and other common coronaviruses, such as those responsible for the common cold.

      To confirm their results, the researchers analyzed more than 300 blood samples collected from 2011 to 2018. While almost all samples had antibodies against coronaviruses that cause the common cold, 16 of 302 adults (5.3%) had antibodies that would recognize SARS-CoV-2—regardless of whether they had recently had a cold. Only 1 of an additional 13 adult blood donors (7.7%) recently infected with other coronaviruses had cross-reactive antibodies. Of samples from 50 pregnant women, 5 (10%) had such antibodies.

      In contrast, 21 of 48 children aged 1 to 16 (44%) had cross-reactive antibodies, with those aged 6 to 16 most likely to have them.

      Lead author Kevin Ng, a doctoral candidate at Francis Crick Institute, said in an institute press release that children may be more likely to have these antibodies because they are more often exposed to other coronaviruses. “These higher levels we observed in children could also help explain why they are less likely to become severely ill with COVID-19,” he said. “There is no evidence yet, however, that these antibodies prevent SARS-CoV-2 infection or spread.”

      That article notes that cross-reactivity appears to be much more common in children, but the percentages found in adults, on the order of 10%, is in the same ballpark as the 11 percent quoted in the FAZ piece.

  13. Socal Rhino

    49% of union households voted FOR Prop 22, and Prop 15 is going down. I’m thinking my state really isn’t the lefty republic some people I know fear it is.

    1. ambrit

      Considering the actions of the California Elites down through the ages, calling California “lefty” is a clear exercise in Big Lie Propaganda. The Hollywood campaign against Upton Sinclair’s EPIC campaign for governor of the state of California in 1934 was an early manifestation of outright propaganda at work.
      Scroll forward and look at Ronald Reagan’s campaign for governor of the state and subsequent governing record.
      California never was the “Lefty” bastion it has been purported to be. It just plays one on television.

      1. Charger01

        Matt Crisman of Chapo fame had an excellent history podcast “epic fail” about epics movement in california.

    2. Tycho

      I moved to CA from the rust belt. I believe that the rust belt is more liberal than CA. CA used to regularly vote for Republicans at the state level. My conclusion is that CA is overall a center-right to moderate-right state, and that CA votes for Democrats because the Democrat/Republican parties have moved so far to the right.

    3. Dirk77

      I don’t live in CA anymore, but was sad the hear about props 22 and especially 15 going down. The problem with CA is that it has had a high sales tax to try to balance the low property tax. But since sales tax is regressive, while property tax is progressive, all they’ve ended up with is a pro-growth dump.

  14. timbers

    Had he done this years ago he might be serving a 2nd term:

    Trump’s new Secretary of Defense Christopher Miller sent a late Friday memo to the entire Department of Defense workforce signaling what the administration will be up to in Trump’s last weeks in office — a likely major US troop reduction, especially from the Middle East.

    “We are not a people of perpetual war – it is the antithesis of everything for which we stand and for which our ancestors fought,” Miller said in the memo, and emphasized that “All wars must end.”

    1. ambrit

      We will see the true nature of the Democrat party elites when Biden starts to “reverse” the late stage Trump drawdowns. That will be a very strong charge with which to delegitimize Biden’s administration. The Russiagate ‘chickens’ are circling right now to return to roost.
      The Democrat party has “sown the wind.” More to come, watch this space, etc.

      1. polecat

        You’re so right, ambrit! Bush ear NeoCons and Democrat Leadershit coming together, melding as one humongous, gangrenous carbunkle of ineptitude, greed, and rot.

        No coughdrops need be swallowed by the mokes, only the efficacious lies!

    2. Keith

      My thoughts exactly. Hopefully he will be able to end Afghanistan. It seems the bureaucrats are intent to keep us in Syria, though. It will be interesting to see how long it will take Assad to gas his own people once Biden is sworn in.

    3. lordkoos

      Would love to see it happen… it will be a battle I predict as I’m sure that Afghanistan is a huge cash cow for defense industry profiteers.

      1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

        And I love the “But Afghanistan has tons of minerals!” meme. They may. But they do not have roads, trains, or ports to bring it to market. Nor do they have one ingredient required in abundance in order to mine: water. Fear not however, Joe B will spend billions to liberate Afghanistan’s minerals just like we spent billions to liberate Afghani women. Maybe he can appoint Tara Reade to lead the liberation of Taliban women? She has a lot of experience with deep-seated misogyny and denial.

    4. WhoaMolly

      “We are not a people of perpetual war – it is the antithesis of everything for which we stand and for which our ancestors fought,” Miller said in the memo, and emphasized that “All wars must end.”


      1. pjay

        Apparently not the Onion or the Duffel Blog – though it might as well be.

        As several have already stated, rather disingenuous to do this *now*. Also, last I heard he still had one of the worst human beings on the face of the earth as his Secretary of State, Bloody Gina as his CIA head, and Elliott Abrams still slithering around in there somewhere — among others. And Uncle Bill Barr will make sure nothing much gets exposed before the clock runs out.

        Still, even if it were done in a fit of pike or “petulant frenzy,” I’m happy to see Trump force the CIA Dems to expose themselves for the warmongering imperialists they are just one more time before he goes.

  15. a different chris


    In a bitter farewell to his home of 21 years, Garo Dadevusyan wrenched off its metal roof and prepared to set the stone house on fire.

    …metal roof…stone house

    Am I a bad person for having the thought that, in America, you could take out your ballon-frame+drywall McMansion just by running it over with a small car? Or your kids large tricycle…

  16. Morris

    How to Avoid a Surprise Bill for Your Coronavirus Test

    Everybody has to sign an authorization for whatever test you take.
    In permanent ball point pen, write above your signature:

    “Provider agrees that patient receives this test with zero copays or charges.”

    Take a picture of the entire agreement, and a close up of your addendum. If bill arrives, forward copy of the contract to the billing agency and tell them to GFT.

    1. polecat

      This is assuming one even HAS an insurance policy to bill, right?

      So what of the lowly uninsured?? Tattoo said release of liability on one’s person … say an arm, or better yet, one’s backside?

  17. jef

    “Star City, the secretive home of Russia’s space program,…”

    Its only a “secret” to Americans because tptb does not want the average american to know that it is Russia that kept the US space program running for the last 10 years or so. Damn that Putain.

  18. DJG

    Rahm Emmanuel is a Donald Trump of the Democratic Party. My estimate is that there are three to five million Trumps and Trumpettes in the United States, infesting just about any complex structure from major corporations to the local neighborhood organization. Their god is marketing and propaganda. So: Vapors. Blather. Self-promotion (ABC = Always Be Closing).

    If you want to get Chicagoans going extra-salty, just ask for a description of former mayor Rahm. I’ll just point out that, like Trump, he is nasty, brutish, vindictive, and prone to lying. His career is one upward failure after another. But then I live in a ward where he was quite unpopular.

    Sound familiar? There are millions of them. And now we get to see the Biden administration self-destruct by dropping heavy hints that clowns like Hillary Clinton and the Rahmster still have value in our public life. Is Susan Rice available to be another re-tread? Sententious John Kerry?

    Why can’t we send these people home permanently?

    1. Phillip Cross

      Imagine how big the killing fields would need to be, if an American Khmer Rouge style movement ever wanted to really change things up over here.

    2. Wellstone's Ghost

      Rahm Emmanuel did a blurb on Seattle’s NPR affiliate KUOW several months ago.
      He was probably in town to pick up some loot from one of the local Microsoft or Amazon funders.
      He came across as the biggest dick ever.
      It is difficult to come across as a dick over the radio because it is just the persons voice that you are experiencing without the facial expressions.
      He was pompous, shifty, rude and generally discourteous to the interviewer.
      Funny way to behave on the the local NPR station in Seattle where PMC Neoliberal Democrats rule the roost.
      Rahm is the personification of what and who is wrong with leadership in the Democratic Party.

  19. dcblogger

    One Person Stabbed Amid Violent Clashes In Downtown D.C. After Pro-Trump Rally
    The Metropolitan Police Department confirmed that 21 arrests were linked to the demonstrations and police recovered eight firearms. Four MPD officers sustained non-life threatening injuries, a spokesperson said.

    warning, trans individual attacked by proud boys

    basically Nazis ran around the city attacking people and DC police did nothing.

    1. SalonBee

      I guess you missed all the videos from yesterday (I have seen at least 5) of BLM protesters attacking Trump supporters. How come Biden will not condemn the violence from his supporters?

        1. Aumua

          Yes in spite of what you may have heard… the anti fascist counter demonstrators are not necessarily affiliated with Joe Biden, the Democratic party or even BLM. Things are a little more nuanced than what you might have been told.

          One thing is clear to me though: plenty of people showed up there on all sides with the expressed intention of doing battle in the streets. So while everyone wants to point at one side and go “they’re the violent ones”, it’s really hard to say.

    2. Fireship

      “Authoritarian shtheads to the right of me, buffoonish Idpols to the left, Here I am stuck in the middle with you!”

      “All competent states are alike; each fail state facepalms in its own way.” ― Leo Tolstoy

      The US just turns into a bigger joke by the day. Gore Vidal would be in orgasmic spasms at the stupidity on display if her were alive today. Dear Lord, it is so good to be alive at this time in history.

      1. Tom Bradford

        The US just turns into a bigger joke by the day.

        Joke? No.

        I grew up in the UK in the 50’s and 60’s surrounded by USAF bases mixing with base families living in the community, and the US then seemed like one’s favourite rich uncle – generous, out-going, accepting, a reassuring, fun presence in the background yet also the grown-up in the room if push came to shove.

        Now, though, the US is the same uncle with dementia you visit in the institution because you feel you owe it him, for all that he has blown through the wealth he once had, does not recognise you, doesn’t really understand where he is and only has a few ungrounded, over-coloured memories of the life he once had.

        A joke? No. Heart-breakingly sad? Yes.

    3. lordkoos

      Disappointing. I was hoping lefties would not take the bait and just leave the MAGA people to themselves, depriving the media of another opportunity to trumpet “riots”.

  20. anon in so cal

    >Delhi air quality

    Honestly looks the same as it did 9 years ago. We went to northern India in Dec-Jan of 2009 and the smog was so dense there were days we could not see across the street from our hotel window. I remember landing at the airport and the cabin filled up with a horrible acrid burning smell. I thought there was a fire on board but it was just normal air intake. It was also like that in Corbett and Bharatpur, hard to see across the trails.

  21. DanP66

    I think this election proves that the democrats have professionalized vote fraud.

    I do not believe for one minute that Biden won this legitimately.

    WAY too many irregularities for anyone to have confidence in this election.

    Almost wish SCOTUS could toss out the results and force every state to redo the presidential race, in person voting only with ID required and paper ballots.

    Do that and Biden STILL wins….I can accept that BUT I will never ever believe that this was the most grotesque election ever held and that it was rigged by all kinds of swamp creatures.

    1. flora

      He may have won legitimately. But, with electronic, computerized counting machines built by private companies using unexamined, proprietary software, how will we ever know ? “Black Box” voting, indeed.

      Hand marked ballots, hand counted, in public. So much harder to steal elections that way, though it can be done. See the Chicago “graveyard” vote in 1960. ;) Electronic voting/computerized counting makes stealing so much easier and harder to detect. “We ran the count through the same machine/server twice and got the same results.”

      Important point here: Consistency is not the same thing as accuracy.

      Mis-programmed machines can be consistently wrong in the results, no matter how many times the same data is entered.

      1. flora

        Adding: if there is ANY software modifications to the individual machines or servers once the voting/ counting starts, if there is ANY “phoning home” by machines to an offsite server once the voting/counting starts, that is a very bad sign in terms of IT security and confidence in the individual machines’ software. I think any IT coding and IT security professional would come to this conclusion.

        If you watched the Iowa Dem caucus with its new APP that “phoned home” before returning results – which in many places did not match the counts sent in by the caucusing sites – you saw the problems in real time. The problems in counting were not randomly distributed such that each candidate suffered, but seemed to consistently short-count the most progressive candidates by misallocating their votes other candidates. Caucus site managers complained loudly about the errors, to little avail. Might have been a coincidence.

        1. flora

          Shorter: Making it easier for parties’ establishments to cheat in elections makes it easier for the establishments to ignore their base voters interests.

        2. marym

          As I posted above, the current Georgia process is a full hand recount of “ballots” printed from the touchscreen votes, and verifiable by the voter prior to the scan. I think these print-from-touchscreen “ballots” are new this year in many places (first saw it this year in the IL primary).

          Do you think it’s theoretically possible to have a statistical analysis of the initial machine totals (or other factors) to help determine a model for doing partial hand recounts that would be likely to reveal discrepancies?

          (I don’t disagree with what you’re saying about points of vulnerability or the need for paper ballots that are at least hand countable, till we get closer (if ever) to fully hand counted.)

    2. edmondo

      Thanks for the offer, but if you think I am going to show up to vote in the middle of a pandemic so that yon have “some confidence” in the result, well tough cookies on your end.

      1. flora

        Absentee ballots are good. They’re a vote by mail, but have certain safeguards from fiddling.

        Both sides try to cheat. There are billions of dollars at stake.

        T tried to fiddle the post office, imo, to slow mail-in vote deliveries. I, as a reg Dem, got 5 vote-by-mail forms in the mail with my name and address all filled out, sent me by a national Dem outfit I’d never heard of. The signature line didn’t require a signature witness. I threw them in the trash and did the usual absentee request from the county.

    3. neo-realist

      You mean the rampant voter disenfranchisement of FL black voters in 2000 by Jeb Bush and Katherine Harris, not to mention the stopping of the vote count by Brooks Brothers Brownshirts, doesn’t rise to the level of swamp creatures? On the other hand, comparing those GOP henchmen to swamp creatures is arguably an insult to swamp creatures.

      1. lordkoos

        I fail to understand how the 2020 election in Georgia was not thrown out as invalid after Kemp’s massive purge of mostly black voters.

        1. rowlf

          Some background on Kemp’s voter purge. The first link covers Georgia’s “exact match” law. The second is about the Georgia bill requiring the Secretary of State to purge the voter rolls in the first six months of odd-numbered years and required to notify the purged voter by mail instructing the elector to return a card to remain active.

          The last link is the excellent Propublica article recently on polling locations in Georgia and how they are run. My take is both parties try to game the system for their advantage.

          Voter Purges: What Georgians Heading to the Polls Need to Know

          Voter Roll Purging

          Why Do Nonwhite Georgia Voters Have to Wait in Line for Hours? Their Numbers Have Soared, and Their Polling Places Have Dwindled.

          1. rowlf

            Another good look at Georgia voting.

            I found this quote interesting as my wife naturalized after having a Georgia driver’s license but had no problems voting in person. “In 2019, Kemp signed legislation that reined in the scrutiny, although voting-rights activists say voters still risk officials flagging them as suspect if they obtained a Georgia’s driver’s license before they become U.S. citizens.”

            Georgia Hotbed For Voter Suppression Tactics

          2. neo-realist

            Both may have tried, but the GOP, with the SOS and eventual winner of the Gubernatorial election tossing a ton of black voters off the rolls with the blessing of a GOP majority legislature, had the upper hand in the gaming of the system and the predominant political control over state politics at that time.

            Fortunately, the extraordinary job that Stacey Abrams has done on the ground in organizing and registering black voters appears to have shifted the pendulum a bit.

    4. marym

      One’s preferred candidate losing an election doesn’t “prove” there was fraud. Nor do unsubstantiated claims of fraud in this election provide justification for further voter suppression tactics from Republicans, any more than their past unsubstantiated claims of fraud.

    5. Glen

      You’re twenty years late to the party –

      Except SCOTUS doesn’t “throw out the election”. They just pick the winner.

      Like they did in 2000.

      But PLEASE take the next logical step –

      The Republicans don’t represent YOU.

      The Democrats don’t represent YOU.

      Follow the money – they represent Wall St and the billionaires. BOTH PARTIES.

  22. anon in so cal

    >Glenn Greenwald:

    “The Three Greatest Dangers of Biden/Harris: Militarism, Corporatism and Censorship, All Fueled by Indifference”

    “After a string of defeats in the 1970s and 1980s, the Democratic Party made a conscious decision to radically change its character, its real core constituencies and funding base, and actual ideology (as distinct from the political branding it continues to propagate). Its character, orientation and mentality are now clear. Matt Stoller’s 2016 article in The Atlantic — entitled “How the Democratic Party Killed its Populist Soul” — tells that story as well as possible…

    I discuss what I believe would be the three gravest dangers of a Biden/Harris administration: militarism, corporatism and censorship, all driven by a sudden indifference on the part of the institutional checks and balances (starting with the media) that had been so active, rambunctious and vibrant over the prior four years.”

    1. newcatty

      That “indifference on the parts of the institutional checks and balances (starting with the media) is actually not so “sudden “. It now will be a “return to normal”, as stated by Biden, iirc. Alas.

  23. Hepativore

    The food shortages caused by the pandemic have made it so that turkeys were almost impossible to find until the end of October. Even though I live by myself (unless you count my cat) I bought whole turkeys quite often all year round. This is because they are one of the most economical things you can buy for what you spend your money on, and you do not have to cook for a week. Turkey should not just be for holidays and special occasions.

    Actually, if you are going to buy a whole turkey, it makes sense to buy the largest one you can find. This is because birds that are 14-pounds or larger have a higher meat-to-bone ratio so you get more for your money per pound.

    Even by myself, I never had to throw anything away in terms of turkey leftovers. When you pick all of the meat from the carcass a turkey is not as big as it appears to be, and it also helps that I have always like poultry, anyhow. If people are that worried about spoilage, they could always freeze their leftovers.

  24. Jason Boxman

    Some rare good news; Somerville, MA is sent out a tri-fold in the mail detailing rights and resources for tenants with regard to evictions during the pandemic.

    Is anyone else seeing any outreach like this anywhere?

  25. Chauncey Gardiner

    Appreciate the informative post on the diverse and inclusive celebrations of the Indian holiday of Diwali. Particular striking to see the photo of the lights at the Golden Temple in Amritsar, as I had previously thought Diwali was a Hindu religious festival. I am reminded of troubled nuclear physicist Robert Oppenheimer’s famous quote from the Bhagavad-Gita as a counterpoint to the spirit of this holiday. The photo in the linked article of Modi in military garb addressing troops in Rajasthan also seems inconsistent. So, thank you. I hope the gatherings don’t lead to further spread of the the virus there.

  26. Wukchumni

    Day 12 of the ‘I Ran Hostage Crisis’

    Using the same logistics as those counting attendance at my inauguration, it looks as if we were just a little shy of our anticipated amount in the Million MAGA March.

    A great turnout though and perhaps the greatest turnout for somebody being turfed out.

  27. Maritimer

    Egypt unveils scores of ancient coffins, statues found in Saqqara Al Jazeera
    In the USA if I dug up the body of an Archeology Professor who had been buried last week, it would be a crime. And if additionally exhibited it for $$$$$$$$, well…….

    But if hundreds or thousands of year pass, dig away and bring on the mind-numbed gawking tourists. (Really, how many mummies, sarcophagi do you have to see before you get the idea?) I know, I know “all in the interest of science (and tourism).”

    The sanctity of the human body has a date stamp just like a lot of our other hallowed and revered ideas.

    1. The Rev Kev

      Some places recycle graves after a set period of time so if you look for ancestor’s graves there, they will have been long overturned and a new lot in-

      My father-in-law said he was disgusted to see when he worked for the water board and they were putting in a line through a cemetery, that a digger was just going through there and bones were popping up where ever it dug.

      Mind you, some modern ideas are no improvement. One is to put your boy into a biodegradable bag and you would be buried in a cow-paddock. Yes, there would be livestock actually feeding there. If you want to visit your family member, you will be issued a GPS location which you will use your mobile to find. very touching that. Sniff!

  28. jr

    Thanksgiving Day After Stew:

    Clean the bones and crack the ends of them open with a sharp knife. Make a broth. While that is working, take the meat and cut it against the grain. When the broth is done, remove the bones, sieve it, and chill it to remove the fat. When it’s clean, add the remaining mashed potatoes, gravy, and meat. I like to throw in some corn or chopped spinach, whatever the vege dish was. Let this cook gently for at least an hour, preferably two.

    Take the remaining stuffing, butter it, and toast it in the oven. Add to the bowl as you would a toasted crouton. Delish!

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