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October 16, 2020

Hal Brown Blog

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 This is an internationally read blog  with original essays and my  opinions on 

Oct. 16, 2020




CORONAVIRUS

Pfizer delivers final blow to Trump's hope for preelection vaccine

There won’t be a coronavirus vaccine ready before Election Day, despite President Donald Trump’s repeated promises and vaccine makers’ breakneck speed.




A dueling town halls upside: Media finally focuses on the wide gulf between Biden and Trump

The nation's top political reporters actually focused on the extreme contrast between the candidates, not spectacle

Breaking news: Trump claims that his $421 million debt is “tiny.” He apparently owes more than twice that amount 

In fact, Trump's company reportedly owes about $340 million to German financial giant Deutsche Bank, the embattled institution which was one of the few banks willing to lend him money after a series of bankruptcies and defaults. While Trump appeared to acknowledge the $421 million in personally guaranteed loans that were reported by The Times, a Forbes analysis found that Trump's total debt was actually closer to $1 billion.


WASHINGTON – NBC moderator Savannah Guthrie prodded President Donald Trump Thursday during his town hall when talking about him retweeting conspiracy theories, saying he's not just "someone's crazy uncle."

Guthrie pressed Trump on his penchant for tweets that spread disinformation, including one post he retweeted that contained a conspiracy theory that former Vice President Joe Biden and President Barack Obama orchestrated a cover-up that included the Navy SEAL Team Six faking the death of terrorist Osama bin Laden.

"That was a retweet. That was an opinion of somebody and that was a retweet. I'll put it out there. People can decide for themselves. I don't take a position," Trump said in defending his tweet.

"You're the president," Guthrie responded. "You're not someone's crazy uncle who can retweet whatever. USA Today


Read VOX article above.
Winner: Biden, Loser Trump, Winner, substance, Winner, FOMO (fear of missing out), Winner, host Savannah Guthrie, Winner, QAnon, Loser, the individual mandate, Loser, Trump's purported toughness 


Six takeaways from Trump and Biden's dueling town halls - they are really false equivalents - The Hill



5 takeaways from the dueling Trump and Biden town halls, Wash. Post

1. Trump’s smorgasbord of misinformation and false choices — deftly called out

2. Biden had the steady showing he needed with the clock ticking down

3. Trump steps into another non-denouncing minefield — on QAnon

4. Biden opens the door further on court-packing and says he’ll confirm a stance soon

5. Trump’s last negative test before his coronavirus diagnosis: Still clear as mud

From The NY Times:


President Trump spoke positively about an extremist conspiracy-theory group, expressed skepticism about mask-wearing, rebuked his own F.B.I. director and attacked the legitimacy of the 2020 election in a televised town hall forum on Thursday, veering far away from a focused campaign appeal. Instead, he further stoked the country’s political rifts as his Democratic opponent, Joseph R. Biden Jr., pushed a deliberate message anchored in concerns over public health and promises to restore political norms.

Mr. Trump’s defensive and combative performance came on a night that was supposed to feature a debate between him and Mr. Biden, but that morphed into a long-distance study in contrasts on different television networks after the president declined to participate in a virtual debate.

On the central issue of the election, the coronavirus pandemic, the two candidates appeared to inhabit not just different television sets but different universes. Mr. Biden has made the full embrace of strict public health guidelines the centerpiece of his candidacy, while Mr. Trump has continued to defy even the recommendations of his own government on matters as basic as the use of masks — a pattern that persisted in their opposing events on Thursday.

Mr. Biden lashed virtually every aspect of the president’s handling of the health crisis, including his language on masks.

“The words of a president matter,” Mr. Biden said. “When a president doesn’t wear a mask or makes fun of folks like me when I was wearing a mask for a long time, then, you know, people say, ‘Well, it mustn’t be that important.’”

In perhaps his most incendiary remarks, Mr. Trump repeatedly declined to disavow QAnon, a pro-Trump internet community that has been described by law enforcement as a potential domestic terrorism threat. The president professed to have no knowledge of the group, and as a result could not disavow it, but then demonstrated specific knowledge of one of its core conspiracy theories involving pedophilia that is entirely false.


Savannah Guthrie Compared Trump To A "Crazy Uncle" For Sharing False Bin Laden Conspiracy Theories

"You're the president," the Today show anchor told Trump about his false Osama bin Laden tweets. "You're not someone's crazy uncle who can retweet whatever."



Bits/pieces:

As the report notes, a recent Wall Street Journal/NBC poll shows a dramatic drop in support for the president “among white male voters without college degrees …. from an enormous 35 points to a significant but narrowing 19 points.”

According to Nick Stevens, 30, a Texas small-business owner, he is a Republican who is holding his nose and voting for Democratic challenger Joe Biden because he can’t handle Trump any longer.  Rawstory




WHO Study Finds Remdesivir Has ‘Little Or No Effect’ On Preventing  Deaths — 10/16/20, 6:15 a.m. ET

The World Health Organization said the antiviral drug remdesivir — one of the many drugs President Donald Trump was given to treat his coronavirus infection — has “little to no effect” on mortality for patients hospitalized with the coronavirus, CNN reported.

The WHO looked at four therapeutics in a study covering more than 11,000 coronavirus patients in 30 countries. Along with remdesivir, the study analyzed the use of hydroxychloroquine; a combination of the anti-HIV drugs lopinavir and ritonavir; and interferon.

“For each drug in the study, the effect on mortality was disappointingly unpromising,” WHO said. The study hasn’t been published in a peer-reviewed journal but the WHO published the results themselves.

The disappointing result differs from an earlier study in the U.S. that found that remdesivir shortens recovery time by about a third in those hospitalized with serious illness.

— Liza Hearon






Oct. 15, 2020

Exclusive: GOP Sen. Sasse says Trump 'kisses dictators' butts' and mocks evangelicals

Excerpt:

Republican Sen. Ben Sasse, in a private call with constituents, excoriated President Trump, saying he had mishandled the coronavirus response, "kisses dictators' butts," "sells out our allies," spends "like a drunken sailor," mistreats women, and trash-talks evangelicals behind their backs.

Trump has "flirted with white supremacists," according to Sasse, and his family "treated the presidency like a business opportunity."

In what appears to be a conference call with his Nebraska constituents, Sasse said Trump could drive the Senate into the hand of the Democrats and cause permanent damage to the Republican Party. It is unclear when the call occurred, though it had to have happened well into this year because Sasse discusses Trump's handling of the coronavirus.

Sasse, a possible GOP candidate for president in 2024, is up for reelection on Nov. 3 and is expected to cruise to victory.


Viewers stunned as Trump unleashes ‘objectively insane’ rants at latest rally: The steroids ‘turned his brain into pudding’


Is there anything they won't do to try to win? Pro-Trump ‘Scam PAC’ sites shut down by FBI for possible fraud


CDC ‘demoralized’ after Trump White House forces ‘line-by-line edits to official health guidance’

Psychiatrist Judith Herman: Trump’s collapse in the polls has “undeniably” made him more “dangerous”

Excerpt:

Are you worried that Trump may become even less restrained once he's out of the White House?

The problem is as soon as he's out of the White House, he faces multiple [possible] criminal charges, as well as civil liabilities. And that's not going to go anywhere — that's going to progress. And, I mean, I do have enough trust in our institutions. Or hope, I guess, might be a better word, to think that there will be a reckoning. Now, what will happen to his mental status under those circumstances? I think it's not going to be pretty. I mean, it's already not pretty.

But when do you say if someone veers over into psychosis, right? What's the judgment call? And that's not a judgment call that one can make from a distance. I mean, in that sense — I think most of the time the Goldwater rule is perfectly appropriate. Don't make diagnoses from a distance. Ordinarily, we have our patient's permission and all that, but what we can assess from a distance is dangerousness. And when the person in the most powerful office in the world is floridly and undeniably dangerous, I think we have to take it seriously. We also have to hope that any crazy military orders that he gives will not be followed.


Can Trump outrun the virus?


Trump plants more seeds for refusing to concede – falsely claims ‘tens of thousands’ of ballots are ‘fraudulent’



Above: Having made it through the hearing with fit being in, this is her smug victory smile.

EXCERPTS:

At this late date, many people sniff and sip these remarks as though they are new vintages at a wine tasting (“full-bodied with overtones of smoke; more tannins than usual”) but no one finds them especially shocking. Supporters, no less than foes, accept that Trump just isn’t a normal politician. But we are so used to discussing him clinically (“a disrupter,” in a generous mood; “unbalanced,” in a censorious mood) that neither side typically pauses to ponder that even a non-normal politician must still somehow—even if way deep down—be a normal person.

.........

Trump Derangement Syndrome is a satirical phrase. But there is a nonhumorous reality that Trump’s fraught brand of politics coaxes many people to the psychological edge. 

The fact that Trump himself seems lately to be dancing near that edge—that even he has trouble staying grounded amid the foam and frenzy he promotes—may be the best evidence that deep down he is actually normal.


Can America be saved from Donald Trump's black hole of lies? Salon


Does Donald Trump believe his lies? Or is this all some type of performance?

All that Donald Trump cares about is winning the next five minutes — and he only really cares about the next minute or so. Trump is always doing the wrong thing. Trump is a toddler and he just wants to have his belly stroked every minute or so and then he forgets that it happened.

What is your greatest hope in this moment? What is your greatest fear?

My hope is that we turn this ocean liner around in the 2020 election. I hope that the Republicans are defeated, that Trump is defeated, that the Supreme Court is made rational, and we start moving the country back in the direction of sanity and decency. My fear is that the upcoming election is the last time we actually have a chance to save the United States from an American form of fascism. I'm only 60, but I'm an American historian, and I don't think things have ever been this bad since the Civil War. I wish there was more of a sense of alarm among the institutions that really matter to this country's democracy.

I wonder if Rupert Murdoch is responsible for putting this on top of the Fox News website. They are sure hyping the Hunter Biden story.







DOJ admits Trump lied about Russian documents




Scientists Are Slamming The Great Barrington Declaration’s Call For “Herd Immunity”

A week after White House officials met with scientists endorsing herd immunity, dozens of other researchers called it “a dangerous fallacy unsupported by scientific evidence.”

Excerpt:

“Promoting the concept of ‘herd immunity’ as framed in a recently circulated document as an answer to the COVID-19 pandemic is inappropriate, irresponsible and ill-informed,” said the heads of the Infectious Diseases Society of America and the HIV Medicine Association, which respectively represent more than 12,000 infectious disease experts and 6,000 HIV/AIDS specialists, in a statement Wednesday.

In another joint statement on Wednesday, 14 prominent public health organizations declared that “the suggestions put forth by the Great Barrington Declaration are NOT based in science” and they would “haphazardly and unnecessarily sacrifice lives.”

“The declaration is not a strategy, it is a political statement,” wrote the groups, which included the American Public Health Association, the Association of Public Health Laboratories, and the Johns Hopkins Center for Public Security. “It ignores sound public health expertise. It preys on a frustrated populace. Instead of selling false hope that will predictably backfire, we must focus on how to manage this pandemic in a safe, responsible, and equitable way.”

And a group of 80 researchers is countering the Great Barrington Declaration with an open letter of its own: the John Snow Memorandum, named for the 19th-century physician who tracked the source of a cholera outbreak in London and is considered a founder of modern epidemiology.

In the letter, the signatories acknowledged that there has been “widespread demoralisation and diminishing trust” in the face of ongoing restrictions in countries that have failed to adopt “adequate provisions to manage the pandemic and its societal impacts.”

But society cannot simply allow the virus to spread unchecked in large groups of people, argued the letter, which was led by 30 researchers and signed by 50 others spanning public health, epidemiology, medicine, health policy, and other disciplines.


Oct. 14, 2020




Biden campaign lashes out at New York Post

The campaign cast the allegations against Joe and Hunter Biden in the tabloid as “Russian disinformation,” while Republicans complained social media companies were censoring the story.


First Lady Melania Trump: “My personal experience with COVID-19.” - Barron had it too...




Excerpt: Recovering from an illness gives you a lot of time to reflect. When my husband was taken to Walter Reed as a precaution, I spent much of my time reflecting on my family. I also thought about the hundreds of thousands of people across our country who have been impacted by this illness that infects people with no discrimination. We are in unprecedented times—and with the election fast approaching, it has been easy to get caught up in so much negative energy.

It also cheered me to think of all the people I have met across our country and the world—and the goodness and compassion that exists if you seek it out. Our country has overcome many hardships and much adversity, and it is my hope COVID-19 will be another obstacle we will be able to tell future generations we overcame—and learned from in the process.

I encourage everyone to continue to live the healthiest life they can. A balanced diet, fresh air, and vitamins really are vital to keep our bodies healthy. For your complete well-being, compassion and humility are just as important in keeping our minds strong. For me personally, the most impactful part of my recovery was the opportunity to reflect on many things—family, friendships, my work, and staying true to who you are.


As one of Trump’s conspiracy theories bites the dust, he moves on to new pseudo-scandals, Max Boot, WaPo

Excerpt: 

On Tuesday, Trump retweeted lunatic claims that Obama and Biden “may have had Seal Team 6 killed” and that Osama bin Laden was still alive and living in Iran. On Wednesday, Grenell was hyping a front-page story in Rupert Murdoch’s New York Post claiming that “smoking gun” emails (allegedly obtained from a computer repair shop in Delaware) show that Joe Biden met an adviser to the Ukrainian energy company Burisma at his son Hunter’s request. The Post wrote that this meeting occurred “less than a year before the elder Biden pressured government officials in Ukraine into firing a prosecutor who was investigating the company.”

That is false — and quite possibly part of a Russian disinformation campaign. The Ukrainian prosecutor wasn’t actually investigating Burisma. He was, in fact, complicit in corruption — which is why Biden demanded, on behalf of the U.S. government and the international community, that he be fired. The Biden campaign also denies that the meeting described by the Murdoch tabloid ever took place.

But facts don’t matter in the Hunter Biden conspiracy theories any more than in the “unmasking” story. The strategy is, as former Trump strategist Stephen K. Bannon once said, to “flood the zone with shit” to distract attention from Trump’s real wrongdoing. The real scandal is that Trump and his cult followers hurl so many insane accusations — and never recant or apologize. While claiming to be a victim of McCarthyism, Trump is, in fact, its foremost modern practitioner. His mentor, Joseph McCarthy’s henchman Roy Cohn, would be proud of him.

Kamala Harris corners Amy Coney Barrett on climate change, she set her up and then got her to show what a Trump sycophant she is


“Senator, again, I was wondering where you were going with that. You have asked me a series of questions that are completely uncontroversial, like whether COVID-19 is infectious, whether smoking causes cancer, and then trying to analogize that to eliciting an opinion from me that is on a very contentious matter of public debate, and I will not do that. I will not express a view on a matter of public policy, especially one that is politically controversial because that’s inconsistent with the judicial role as I have explained.”

“Thank you, Judge Barrett, and you’ve made your point clear that you believe it’s a debatable point,” said Harris.



Excerpt:

President Trump on drugs. Wow. I have to admit that I failed to see this one coming. Trump’s political career has been such a wild ride all by itself, it never occurred to me to wonder what would happen if this grandiose narcissist with the bombastic flair were to be filled to the gills with a powerful steroid. Just as I never looked at Usain Bolt, the great Jamaican sprinter, and mused: What would he be like on a rocket sled?

Trump’s treatment for covid-19 has been largely cloaked in secrecy, but among the little we do know is that his doctors basically opened the medicine cabinet and dumped a little of everything into their patient. The treatments have run the gamut from A to Z — literally: antivirals to zinc. They’ve lowered Trump’s temperature and raised his blood-oxygen level, while chemically tweaking him from sinuses to stomach.

Even after the president returned to the White House from the hospital, his docs continued to pump in dexamethasone, a steroid normally given to covid-19 patients struggling for life on a ventilator. Its purpose is to tamp down an overly intense immune reaction known as a cytokine storm but, in this case, it may be ramping up the chaos known as Donald Trump.

Who could have seen this coming? The Mayo Clinic, for one. Among the side effects listed for this powerful drug on the Mayo website are “agitation,” “anxiety,” “irritability,” “mood changes,” “nervousness” and — perhaps most apt — “trouble thinking.” Although we cannot know for sure what role this or other drugs are playing, that list maps the emotional and cognitive roller coaster that America’s leader has been riding since he choppered home from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, his face pale behind a mask of uneven orange makeup. The sight of Trump lumbering up the steps to the South Portico to salute the night sky while swaying slightly was the most operatically ridiculous scene since Looney Tunes rendered Wagner, starring Bugs Bunny and Elmer Fudd.

Korpinen Cranberry Bogs

'Stand back and stand by': Rhetoric some call racist has marked Trump's entire presidency

Excerpt:

Lewis Gordon, who heads the philosophy department at the University of Connecticut, said Trump was perpetuating a notion of superiority among white people. 

“Most people who hear Trump’s ramblings don't have the history to know that his words are those of racists," Gordon said. "Today, Trump can say ‘gene’ – that some have ‘good genes’ – and it is implying superiority. Since all racism stems from narcissism, Trump is appealing to the narcissists in the crowd who believe anything they do is superior. They believe they are born with better genes.”

The White House maintains that Trump is not racist. 

“Donald Trump’s record as a private citizen and as president has been one of fighting for inclusion and advocating for the equal treatment of all,” White House Deputy Press Secretary Sarah Matthews told The Washington Post last month. “Anyone who suggests otherwise is only seeking to sow division.”

Yes, Biden should pack the court: It's time to fight back against Mitch McConnell's power-grabs, by "Digby" Parton


Sixteen cases were linked to an outdoor Trump event at an airport in Bemidji on Sept. 18; three cases to a Trump event in Duluth on Sept. 30; and three cases to a Trump 2020 event featuring Vice President Mike Pence at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport on Sept. 24, The Hill reported.

At the Bemidji event, four of the cases were reported by protesters, the report said.


Oct.13, 2020


Barrett insists she is against discrimination — but her language betrays her real views


Amy Coney Barrett’s religion is fair game

Ignoring faith means ignoring the parasitic ramifications of the anti-Roe project.


Former Trump official details how difficult it was to protect America during the last 4 years — because of the ‘chaos’ president... Trump made it hard for me to protect America. How could I vote for him again? How could anyone?

My job was to keep Americans safe and Trump was my biggest obstacle. He ignored white nationalist violence, ignored COVID-19, and nearly started a war.



TRUMP’S NARCISSISM HAS BECOME A MONSTER REPUBLICANS CAN’T CONTROL

Jim Zogby talks about the impact of Trump's COVID-19 diagnosis on the Supreme Court, the stimulus package, and potential violence leading up to the election.

Jerusalem Post -- Making a desperate attempt to decipher Trump’s foreign policy: Narcissism, opposite of Obama,  "America First" and appeasing his political base.



Oct. 12, 2020




One grey but warmish day one in late summer, figuring it wouldn’t be too crowded, I decided to take the nearly 90 minute drive from where we lived in Middleboro to Horseneck Beach State Park beach. This isn’t a Cape Cod beach, rather it is on the mainland located on a spit of land jutting out into the Atlantic. (Below: Click to enlarge map)

Screenshot2020-10-11at1.56.07PM.png

The beach wasn't all that crowded, probably about half the usual crowd  The well trained ocean lifeguards were all sitting on the towers about 50 yards apart scanning the water. I sat halfway between two of the lifeguard towers where it was less crowded. 

Unlike the calm waters of Little Harbor beach, the surf there usually had moderate waves rolling in at about three feet high with a four-footer every five or six waves. (Below: Click here to enlarge picture)

Screenshot2020-10-11at2.39.23PM.png

This was fun surf to play in whether with a noodle or another floatation device, or just unassisted. Young children could play safely close to the shore where the waves had already broke and older children and adults could venture a little further out where they could still stand and enjoyed the waves. The more venturesome could play in the waves where the water was over their head.

I’d been swimming regularly about four times a week at the Y doing half mile to a mile at a time. I wasn't a great swimmer but I had a decent free style.

When I got to the beach I set a small blanket down with my towel and a little cooler with drinks and a peanut butter and jelly sandwich in it, and ran into the foaming surf. 

I wanted to do some serious swimming so I plodded through the waves managing to stay on my feet then I swam a shot distance trying to reach where the sea was calm. Before I could get there a rip current grabbed me and I found myself being taken quickly further from the beach.

My instinct took over and I tried to fight the current and swim back to shore. I swam about 15 strong but futile strokes into the current which fought back against me until I felt exhaustion taking over. Then thankfully I realized what had happened to me. It hit me that I was caught in a rip current.

I remembered what you’re supposed to do (see enlarged illustration). There are two ways to escape from a rip current, neither swimming against it. One is to let it take you out where the waves were still breaking and to try to find a spot where it is possible to swim left or right to get out of it. My current was moving too fast for that so I opted for the second method. 

I just dog paddled keeping myself afloat and facing the beach and I let the current take me about 50 feet or so further out. Time slowed down, but then so did my racing heart and I started to get my wind back.

And then I was in a totally calm sea. I could see the back sides of the breaking waves and the sand dunes behind the beach. I couldn't see the beach but of course I knew it was there. 

I mustered my energy dog paddling for a few minutes and with some trepidation began swimming slowly parallel to the beach for about five minutes, maybe more. Like I said, it was difficult to judge how much time had gone by.

Then, hoping for the best, I turned to the beach and swam to the breaking waves and up the back of the first swell. Nothing pushed me back so I kept swimming. The first wave, a small one, curled and broke  and pushed me towards the beach.

What a relief. I realized I had made it. I’d survived. The next wave broke over me and pushed me even closer to the shore. So it went, wave after wave pushing me so I barely had to swim, all I had to do was keep hold me hands outstretched keeping my face out of the water, kick my feet, and let the wave do the work. 

I felt not only relief but a sense of triumph and actually enjoyed body surfing my way back to shore. That was until I had to stand up and actually walk and realized my legs had turned to jelly.

I collapsed on my blanket, ate my sandwich, and decided that the ocean would have to wait another day before this summer took the plunge again so once I was rested I drove home.

For all I know a lifeguard had been watching me all the time ready to save me, but I never found out.

My point, if you haven't figured it out, is that when you feel overwhelmed by currents of Trump anxiety it is best to stop, think, and figure out the best way which works for you to go with the flow until your anxiety is manageable.

The lesson for this month from getting caught in a rip tide is to try not to panic. Figure out the best way to get through the month with feeling overwhelmed. Muster your strength and use it wisely.


Here are some very recent articles about how to best cope with your own anxiety which you may find helpful:

How to Handle the Stress Between Now and Election Day

Can We Get Through This Election Season with Our Mental Health Intact?

How to Cope With Election Anxiety, According to the American Psychological Association

The Poll: 

Here are the most common anxiety signs and symptoms from the Mayo Clinic:

  • Feeling nervous, restless or tense
  • Having a sense of impending danger, panic or doom
  • Having an increased heart rate
  • Breathing rapidly (hyperventilation)
  • Sweating
  • Trembling
  • Feeling weak or tired
  • Trouble concentrating or thinking about anything other than the present worry
  • Having trouble sleeping
  • Experiencing gastrointestinal (GI) problems
  • Having difficulty controlling worry
  • Having the urge to avoid things that trigger anxiety
  • Other less common signs and symptoms listed here

If you didn't already have anxiety problems how many of these do you experience now, and if you had anxiety problems how many of these have gotten significantly worse? 



Just saying:


Another aspect of putting someone who believes in the power of prayer like Coney Barrett on the Supreme Court (or any court) is that it begs the issue of just what is going on in their head when they hear a voice which they assume is God telling them what to do. How often does this voice tell them NOT to do something they believed their faith told them they should do. I bet is is rare that people pray and hear God saying “whoa, lady you got it totally wrong, life doesn’t begin at conception, birth control is good, taking away people’s health care is bad, and Donald Trump is an agent of the Devil!” HB

Excerpt below left


Viewed through the dark lens of a fully nihilistic or totalitarian aesthetics, where the work of art transcends all ordinary morality — and if Donald Trump had a theory of aesthetics, that would be it — even the cruelty and recklessness of his performance is an aspect of its brilliance. From the beginning, Trump told us that he could commit murder in public without alienating his supporters. Many of us understood that as a figure of speech. His greatest and most malicious accomplishment in public life (so far) has been to prove, on a grand scale, that it was literally true. 

To cite another example, there is no viable argument that the partnership between Trump and Stephen Miller, his most notably sadistic adviser, has been politically successful. Almost all of their vindictive anti-immigrant agenda has been wildly unpopular, and much of it has been abandoned or thrown out by the courts. But as a theatrical display of faux-macho dominance, fueled by shared bitterness and unconcealed racial resentment, the Trump-Miller act has been immensely satisfying to its intended audience.

To suggest that Trump is fundamentally a salesman, a con man and a performer is certainly nothing new. He has been shaped by the worlds of New York real estate, tabloid publicity, professional wrestling and reality TV, where bullshit is everything and even the physical reality of land, buildings and human bodies is a disputable afterthought. But some people seem to get stuck on an imaginary dichotomy or contradiction between Trump as showman and Trump as wannabe tyrant, as if his oft-expressed desire to seize full power and rule forever were not in itself an aspect of the performance.


Politico: How Biden could end 2020 on election night — and why Trump’s path is unlikely




Amy Coney Barrett went to my all-girls high school. I hope she's not confirmed

We didn’t have a mascot at Dominican, only an emblem: veritas. But truth is not monolithic – it is informed by our belief systems

Undecideds - The Bulwark

Why are people turning on Trump in 2020?


Excerpt:


Earlier this week, I got another email regarding a poll, this time commissioned by Republican Voters Against Trump, a group for which I am the political director. We asked about 350 undecided voters a similar open-ended question to see what was preventing them from voting for Donald Trump. The result? 

Two-thirds of those who had an answer to that question said he’s a racist/arrogant/unintelligent jerk who “doesn’t represent the country well,” “lies,” and is “unfit to do the job.” 

Some verbatims, just for your enjoyment’s sake: 

  • “He is a horrible human being” 

  • “He is incredibly rude” 

  • “Terrible representative for our country” 

  • “He’s sexist and racist” 

  • “He’s an idiot” 

  • “His arrogance” 

  • “Slimebag”

Remember these are the undecided voters. 

.

‘Let me translate that into English’: CNN’s Toobin cracks Amy Coney Barrett’s legal code words







Oct. 11, 2020


This story wasn't easy to find on Fox News. It was summarized in RawStory but to find it on Fox you'd have to go into the Opinion section (link below):

It was the top of the page on RawStory:

On Twitter from Jonathan Lemire



From Politico with my altered illustration


These are here so I can use them in a Daily Kos story