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Wednesday, April 01, 2020

Highlights of the News



“Andre Dawson has a bruised knee and is listed as day-to-day. (Pause.) Aren’t we all?”

ITEM 1: Vin Scully said, "If baseball starts up, we’ve got this thing beat and we can go about our lives. Baseball is not a bad thermometer, when baseball begins, whenever that is, that will be a sure sign that the country is slowly getting back on its feet.

"We’re not going to have a full season because this thing is burning up days like an express train. But somewhere along the line, I hope and pray that baseball will start up, that will be so wonderful, that will be a rainbow after the storm, that, yeah, things are going to get better."

Let's play two.

ITEM 2: RNZ reported, "Scientists around the world have been racing to develop treatments, cures and a vaccine for COVID-19, and are getting closer by the day.

"Jacob Glanville -- one of the stars of Netflix documentary Pandemic -- runs Distributed Bio, which has been working to find an antibody therapy."

He said, "The new virus is a cousin of the old SARS. So what we've done is we've created hundreds of millions of versions of those antibodies, we've mutated them a bit, and in that pool of mutated versions, we found versions that cross them over. So now we know they bind on the same spot as the new virus, COVID-19."

He also said, "Part of the reason we think we're moving pretty fast is that instead of starting from scratch discovering an antibody, we went to these existing antibodies that were already extremely well characterized against SARS. And we've adapted them. So we're piggybacking on two years of research."

This is real science being done in real time for real people. The role of those of us in the peanut gallery is to stay home and stop the spread so they can have time to work their magic.

Retirees got this one down pat.

ITEM 3: The South China Morning Post reported, "Roving security staff at Hongyuan Park, part of the Xixi Wetland preserve in Hangzhou in eastern China, now have the power to quickly detect the body temperature of all park visitors from a distance of up to 1 meter, thanks to 'non-contact thermal augmented reality' smart glasses supplied by AI start-up Rokid Corp.

"The company said on Thursday that each smart glass user will be capable of checking the temperature of several hundred people within two minutes – a vast coverage and speed that would make even Superman proud – to eliminate queues at the park entrance."

Well, there always was a fascist side to Superman. But as long as they use it to screen who enters the park and send the contagious home, I suppose it is OK.

ITEM 4: The Hollywood Reporter reported, "The Walt Disney Co. said Monday that executive chairman Bob Iger will forgo his entire salary, and recently named CEO Bob Chapek will take a 50 percent pay cut to his base salary amid the coronavirus pandemic, according to an email from Chapek sent to employees obtained by The Hollywood Reporter.

"The news comes days after the company made the decision to keep all North American theme parks closed until further notice. Other executives at Disney will also take salary cuts, according to the email."

I do not care for his politics, but Iger stepped up and showed leadership.

Symbolism? Leadership is all about symbolism.

ITEM 5: Dr. Sarosh Ashraf Janjua reported, "A Minnesota State trooper pulled me over on I-35 this past weekend for driving above the speed limit. When he saw my Massachusetts driver’s license, he asked me what I was doing all the way out in Minnesota, so I told him I travel here every month for my work as a locums cardiologist.

"He went back to his patrol car to look up my license, and when he returned, quite firmly told me it was very irresponsible of me to be speeding, especially since I would not only take up resources if I got into an accident, but would also not be in a position to help patients.

"Feeling thoroughly chastised, I waited for him to write me a ticket. Instead, he told me he was going to let me off with a warning.

"As I sputtered to apologize and say thank you, he reached in to hand me what I assumed was my license back. It wasn’t until my hand had closed around what he was giving me that its unexpected bulkiness drew my eyes to it.

"Five N95 masks, from the supply the state had given him for his protection.

"I burst into tears. And though it may just have been the cold wind, I think he teared up a little as well, before wishing me well and walking away."

There's a lot of tearing up going around these days.

ITEM 6: Not everyone is happy with CNN.
But they had breaking news. Fredo is ill.



Journalists love gazing at their navels. Pray for Fredo anyway.

ITEM 7: Just The News reported, "Nevada Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak has decided to allow malaria drugs hydroxychloroquine and chloroquin to be prescribed for the in-patient treatment of corona virus patients, a spokesperson on Tuesday.

"Last week, Sisolak endorsed restrictions on the use of hydroxychloroquine and chloroquin for outpatient prescriptions as the Trump administration touted its potential effectiveness in treating corona virus. The governor's office had said the restrictions were to protect the supply of the drugs for individuals with lupus and other conditions."

Detroit Metro News reported, "Gov. Whitmer reverses course on corona virus drugs, is now asking feds for hydroxychloroquine and chloroquine."

Pretty much we should leave medical decisions up to doctors and not the politicians. It was a nice reversal.

ITEM 8: Journalist Ryan Cooper wrote, "Washington Gov. Jay Inslee is what real coronavirus leadership looks like."

Wait, I thought Fredo's brother was the cat's meow.

Cooper wrote, "New York Governor Andrew Cuomo has long had an uneasy relationship with both the media and the overwhelmingly Democratic residents of his state. He has let the vital New York City subway fall into ruin, actively connived with Republicans to give them control of the state Senate, and generally been a thorn in the side of anyone who wants to do anything good. But now, thanks to the novel corona virus outbreak, suddenly everyone loves him. He's getting breathless (even lustful) media coverage, and his approval rating has jumped by 27 points.

"Don't be fooled, though: Cuomo has royally messed up the coronavirus outbreak, just like he has everything else. If you want an example of effective crisis leadership, look to Washington state Gov. Jay Inslee.

"To begin with, the numbers don't lie. New York state has thus far had the worst outbreak not just of any state, but of any place in the world. Its deaths have risen faster than any other sub-national region at an equivalent point in their outbreaks, even Lombardy, Italy and Madrid, Spain."

But numbers do lie. If the number of deaths is going to determine the election, say hello to President Jim Justice of West Virginia.

ITEM 9: CNBC reported, "Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross is working from his estate in Palm Beach, Florida, while the Trump administration tries to limit the economic fallout from the corona virus outbreak, according to people familiar with the matter.

"Ross, 82, is teleworking to the extent possible, according to the people, who requested anonymity due to the sensitivity of the matter. It could not be determined when he plans to return to Washington. A representative for Ross declined to comment. The White House declined to comment, as well.

"Ross, whose job is to help promote job creation, economic growth and economic security, has been conspicuously absent at recent public events, including Trump’s daily corona virus briefings. He has previously been a key public representative for the administration in key matters, such as the administration’s trade talks with China.

"Ross is a former banker and private equity investor, who made his financial career in working with distressed companies. He has restructured over $400 billion of assets in industries including airline, apparel, auto parts and banking, according to his official biography. But Ross, who is the oldest member of Trump’s Cabinet, could be more vulnerable to the virus, which health experts say may be more serious for elderly people."

I will take Ross at half-speed over any Democrat at full.

ITEM 10: The New York Times reported, "An inspector general uncovered pervasive problems in F.B.I. wiretap applications, according to a memo released Tuesday detailing a review that grew out of a damning report last year about errors and omissions in applications to target a former Trump campaign adviser as part of the Russia investigation.

"The follow-up audit by the office of the Justice Department’s independent watchdog, Michael E. Horowitz, revealed a pattern of sloppiness by the bureau in using powerful tools to eavesdrop on American soil in national-security cases. But it also helps the F.B.I. politically because it undercuts the narrative among President Trump and his supporters that the bureau cut corners to surveil the adviser, Carter Page, as part of a politically motivated conspiracy.

"Mr. Horowitz’s investigators reviewed a random sample of 29 applications by the F.B.I. for court permission to wiretap someone as part of a terrorism or espionage investigation under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, or FISA. They found problems with all 29 of them.

"In 25 of the applications, the review found an average of about 20 problems each. One alone had 65 issues. The other four applications could not be scrutinized at all because the F.B.I. could not locate the so-called Woods file, where it is supposed to catalog supporting documentation for each factual claim in a FISA application."

Repeal FISA and prosecute everyone who told a lie in any of those applications.

Let them feel the wrath of justice.

ITEM 11: The Washington Examiner reported, "Anthony Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said the White House coronavirus task force could eventually recommend that everyone wear masks to help stop the spread of the disease.

"Fauci admitted that such a recommendation could be inhibited by the lack of personal protective equipment. For weeks, public health officials cautioned nonmedical professionals from buying masks as hospitals around the United States struggled to find enough protective equipment for healthcare workers."

One reason Korea and Japan were not hit as hard is people wear masks there because of the yellow dust storms from the Gobi desert each March.

Fox News reported, "More than 235 million people live in the 33 states where governors have declared statewide orders or recommendations to stay home."

Let's hope it ends by April 30th.

ITEM 12: The New American reported, "Border agents at the southwest frontier of the United States caught four illegal-alien sex fiends and a gang member in the last five days, along with a box truck packed with three dozen illegals.

"The arrests are just the latest in the battle that border cops are waging against the reentry of previously deported sex perverts. Barely a week goes by that agents do not apprehend a pervert that immigration authorities kicked out of the country, often more than once.

"The apprehension of the 36 packed into the truck is at least the second in a week.

"The previously deported illegals present a problem if any carry the deadly SARS-CoV-2 virus known as COVID-19. They could unleash the contagion in a federal prison if they are convicted and jailed for felony reentering the country."

Evil never pauses.

ITEM 13: KTRK reported, "28 spring breakers who recently went on a trip to Mexico are self-isolating after testing positive for corona virus, according to the Austin Public Health Department.

"Health officials said a group of about 70 students in their 20s took a chartered plane to Cabo San Lucas, Mexico about a week and a half ago.

"A total of 28 students have tested positive for the virus and dozens more are under a public health investigation. The county said four of the confirmed cases did not present any symptoms."

Maybe they had it before they went but this is another reason why we should guard our borders like hawks. Or better yet, like bald eagles.

ITEM 14: RFI reported, "As more countries ask their human populations to stay at home to limit the spread of corona virus, wild animals have been spotted exploring the empty streets of some of the world's largest urban areas.

"Film footage of a civet cat roaming the deserted streets of Kozhikode in the Indian State of Kerala went viral on social media, while a puma turned up in the center of the Chilean capital Santiago, a city which is under curfew."

The story also said, "In Europe, wild boar have descended from the hills around the Catalan city of Barcelona, while ducks were seen walking quietly near the Comédie Française theater in central Paris. In the Mediterranean, dolphins have reappeared in several ports."

Maybe it is nature's way of saying we overreacted.

Or maybe animals are stupid.

ITEM 15: Biden meanders. Bernie frightens. Cuomo is a powder keg. Only one man can save his party.
Um, er, uh. The 22nd amendment only means no more than two CONSECUTIVE terms. You can sit out a term and come back. Right?

Anyone who disagrees is racist.

ITEM 16: How to jazz up your teleconferences.
Zoom. Indeed.

ITEM 17: Reuters reported, "Macy's Inc will be removed from the benchmark S&P 500 stock index, the S&P Dow Jones Indices said on Tuesday, as corona virus-induced store closures compound the retail sector's struggles with a shift to online shopping."

Ah a little Trumpenfreude.

After Donald Trump entered the presidential race in 2015, Macy's got out its virtue signal.

The New York Times reported, "Macy’s, the department store chain, is ending its relationship with Mr. Trump and phasing out his line of suits, shirts and ties after remarks he made about Mexican immigrants. During his presidential announcement earlier this month he called them killers and rapists while discussing the need for tougher border control."

He became president. Macy's became a stock sliding to oblivion.

The Reuters report also said, "Macy's will be replaced in the S&P 500 by air conditioning company Carrier Global Corp."

Under Obama, Carrier decided to move a furnace factory to Mexico. Under President Trump, it kept its American factory open.

Due to the prevalence of stock index funds, this is a plus for Carrier and a bummer for Macy's.

36 comments:

  1. Item 10: this should put the nail in the coffin of any renewal of FISA warrants for U.S. persons. Note well that the FBI and DOJ lobbied hard to get the renewal before this report came out, as they undoubtedly already had a copy.

    AG Barr is just Sessions with a few more pounds.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. All the FISA judges that approved warrants because of these crap applications need to be impeached/removed from the bench. Clearly they were just "rubber stamps" for the corrupt FBI. They did not do their job and should feel the heat.

      Delete
    2. Felonies reduced to "mistakes" is par for the course. Remember during the Clinton reign of terror ..."Mistakes were made; steps will be taken." And, "Move along folks; nothing to see here." Until proven otherwise, yes, Barr is a heavier Sessions. - Gary B

      Delete
  2. Also, John Prine’s wife says he is in stabile [sic] condition now. She also says there is no cure for the Wuhan Lung Rot.

    How long, O Lord, how long? How long must we put up with these lovers of power, misery, and death, and the people who believe them?

    I know you’re a humble guy, Big D, so I will toot YOUR horn. You were right. This will go down as one of the most overhyped events in human history. And to make it worse, they would go ahead and count Mr. Prine as a COVID VICTIM. He’s had cancer TWICE, had part of his face removed, and is 73. Let’s get real here. I turn 62 next month and feel totally ready to meet my Maker whenever he decides to call me home. These people that don’t, these journalists and movie stars, think that there will be great mourning, unspeakable grief, when (not if) they die. NOT GONNA HAPPEN. Get over yourselves.The Lord cares about His children too much to let a case of the flu ruin this country. Channeling Herb Brooks:

    Covid’s time is DONE. It’s OVER. I’m sick and tired of hearing what a deadly disease it is! This is YOUR TIME. Now get out and there and TAKE IT!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The media goes wild when someone of note gets sick from the virus. They never tell us how their recovery goes - so I guess it is no big deal. Not big news and doesn’t fit their agenda.

      Delete
    2. My understanding is that Prine suffered from double lung cancer. He was/is a dead man walking.

      Delete
  3. ITEM 16: ZOOM has a nice feature: "The ​​Touch Up My Appearance option retouches your video display with a soft focus. This can help smooth out the skin tone on your face, to present a more polished looking appearance when you display your video to others."

    https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/115002595343-Touch-Up-My-Appearance

    ReplyDelete
  4. Item 1: Thank heavens for Vin Scully. What a wonderful guy with a wonderful voice.

    For others suffering from baseball deprivation, MLB Network is showing classic games from baseball's past during the shutdown. Last night we watched (recorded) the marathon 1986 NLCS game 6 between the Mets and Astros. Very enjoyable.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Days without sports. Wait...there's a woman sitting on my couch. She says she's my wife. She seems nice. - Gary B

      Delete
  5. #5 Hmmm ... heartwarming story and all, but .... was the doc's speed so egregious that warranted possible exposure? Speeding, generally, in and of itself is not inherently dangerous. There are other methods to gain compliance without actually pulling a vehicle over.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Maybe the policeman had exam gloves on.

      I’m a volunteer firefighter/first responder. We have worn exam gloves on 911 calls for years - to protect against blood or fentanyl.

      Delete
  6. 8 - PDJT trashes Inslee during one of his update/press conferences. Guess the MSM needed to give him a boost.

    9-Wilbur Ross has been a Giant in this administration.

    17 - a little rain on their parade. Air let out of their balloon. Ahhh. Trumpenfreude.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Inslee always be known as the stooge who called President Trump "the enemy of the state."

      Delete
  7. Item 4:
    This is the same Disney exec that hired low cost foreign workers to replace Americans, with the laid off workers having to train their replacements.

    Although this story is for IT, I believe it happened with other types of workers as well.

    https://www.computerworld.com/article/2915904/fury-rises-at-disney-over-use-of-foreign-workers.html

    Not a big fan of Disney...

    -bma in ma

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Strange... He made no mention of foregoing his annual bonus. The salary is a CEO's chump change. ZB

      Delete
  8. God bless vin Scully. he da man.

    waterman

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was always a Jack Buck fan. The "...I don't believe what I just saw!" Gibson W.S. call makes Russ Hodges' call pale in comparison...was watching Scully call that game on TV, while listening to Buck on the radio, at the same time. ZB

      Delete
    2. When the Dodgers were in Brooklyn.

      Dem beeooteeful Bums.

      The Good Old Days really were.

      Delete
  9. #5: Thanks again for the stories that help us all remember our humanity! Don't get me wrong, I love your commentary and quips on the rest of the news but a mixed diet enables perspective.

    ReplyDelete
  10. 1. In the south we use the Waffle House barometer. If they are open, everything is okay.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. God willing and the creek dont rise.
      ~~ family saying

      Delete
  11. #9. How many mentors does Mr Ross have? 82 and still sharp as a tack and swift as a swallow.
    #12. We need to castrate them before we deport them. Maybe find a better place to send em?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Destination doesn't matter, as long as you transport them in a helicopter an drop them off anywhere...at 2,000 feet.

      Delete
  12. Item 14: (animals in urban areas)
    There are coyotes roaming in San Francisco:
    "Video captures coyote following San Francisco couple walking dog"
    https://abc7news.com/coyote-follows-dog-video-coyotes-in-san-francisco/6063135/

    Even in tourist areas.

    Hopefully they will teach the SF homeless to poop indoors.

    ReplyDelete
  13. Whadda shame...As a young cash strapped, mac-n-cheese starting out, stockbrocker fresh out of college; Macy's Club Room shirts and ties were a high quality but affordable (compared to the Hugo Boss and Armani shirts/ties back in the day that the older seasoned guys in the office were wearing...) ZBest

    ReplyDelete
  14. Talking to the Little Woman, nurse of 52 years’ experience, and she made note of the success (98 – 100%) of a malaria drug in treating this.

    Says she, “If a malaria drug can treat this, it can’t be much of a threat”. This from someone who worked communicable disease for 5 years.

    2: Sweden went about business as usual and they're not any worse off than the rest of Europe.

    8: Inslee is the fiddle while WA burned. He got with it late, just like Don Cuomo.

    11: It will.

    12: Just shoot 'em on the spot.

    14: No, animals are smarter. They have to be.

    16: Hey, it's the Interwebz.

    ReplyDelete
  15. 13: "we should guard our borders like hawks. Or better yet, like bald eagles."

    Actually, considering that Benjamin Franklin damned the bald eagle as cowardly and of bad moral character, that's exactly how the border has been guarded until now, and what is (not quickly enough) being transformed under the Trump administration.

    ReplyDelete
  16. #14 well, we in NE Oreon have Coyotes, Skunks (and Civet cats too),Cougars,Boone and Crockett Mule deer that live in town (No they aren't stupid.).No to mention Rattle Snakes, Mountian Goats, Bears (black) and of course the Canadian Timber Wolf.
    BTW the Wolf that was here was a Red Wolf-Glorified Coyote. No the Canadian Variety.
    Oh Moose, too but the Wolf prefer sheep and cattle.-don't put up as much of a fight..
    No wild Hogs-yet..

    ReplyDelete
  17. #11: Based on the research I've done, most of the masks people are wearing (yes, even people in Korea, Japan, and China) do not keep you from GETTING the virus; rather, they keep you from GIVING the virus to someone else. Although there may be some value to that (if you can get the ill to comply), telling people to wear masks (such as cloth ones) to "protect themselves" is a load of bullshit!

    Yeah, all those fools who think they're really accomplishing something by sewing cloth masks are wasting their time--and endangering people's lives to boot!!!

    ReplyDelete
  18. #15 "The 22nd amendment only means no more than two CONSECUTIVE terms. You can sit out a term and come back. Right?"

    And just like that, internet searches on "22nd amendment" outpaced the virus spread.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It's a hard term limit. If you a re-elected twice, then your presidential carreer ends with the inauguration of your successor. There is no coming back for more.

      Delete
    2. That's supposed to be "are elected twice"

      Delete
  19. #10 - Also the FISA judges to be impeached for not looking into the requests to see if they were even valid. They are just taking the FBI's word and not even looking at the request. Stamp: APPROVED

    #15 From the 22nd Amendment: No person shall be elected to the office of the President more than twice... So No, Obama cannot run again. (Whew!)

    ReplyDelete
  20. #13 28 spring breakers test positive for coronavirus. I figure they, the people who attended Mardis Gras and others who ignore a pandemic are shooting for the Darwin Award. Once this virus is defeated our national IQ will probably go up a few points.
    Chollaman

    ReplyDelete
  21. Banning Trump Ties made Macy's dead to me forever.
    Bye bye.

    ReplyDelete