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Gender: Female
Hometown: NY
Home country: US
Current location: Florida
Member since: Mon Sep 6, 2004, 08:54 PM
Number of posts: 168,455

Journal Archives

Bloomberg launches coronavirus response network for mayors


52 mins ago - Health
Bloomberg launches coronavirus response network for mayors
Kim Hart

Former Democratic presidential candidate Mike Bloomberg, through his foundation Bloomberg Philanthropies, announced on Tuesday an online network of mayors and public health experts to help communities deal with the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Why it matters: Local officials are on the front lines of handling the economic, health and social fallout of the spread of COVID-19 virus.

What they're saying: "There's an enormous gap between what the federal government is providing and the local governments need," Bloomberg said at the National League of Cities Conference on Tuesday in Washington, D.C.

"The failure to prepare and to speak honestly and forthrightly to the public has economic consequences. If the market continues to slide, local governments are going to see the economic fallout in their main street shops and social services caseloads."

Bloomberg said the goal is to help local leaders achieve three things: 1) Decrease the spread of the disease; 2) Help those who contract it to recover; and 3) Protect the economic well-being of communities.

How it works: The virtual network is forming in collaboration with Johns Hopkins and Harvard public health experts.

The network is open to all U.S. mayors. Mayors who are already dealing with with ramifications of the coronavirus in their cities, such as Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan, will share their insights and lessons learned.

Bloomberg Philanthropies will identify and document the needs of cities experiencing the outbreak and share with other local officials.

The program is designed to supplement, not replace, information coming from the federal government, Bloomberg said. "It will help provide guidance on managing medical facilities, handling quarantines, supporting people who are ill who have to stay home because their workplaces or schools are closed."
Posted by babylonsister | Tue Mar 10, 2020, 10:43 AM (9 replies)

New polling shows Trump trailing Dems (but he's pretending otherwise)

New polling shows Trump trailing Dems (but he's pretending otherwise)
When Trump claims polls show him leading both Biden and Sanders, he's turning reality on its head.
March 10, 2020, 10:41 AM EDT
By Steve Benen

Referring to Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders on Twitter this morning, Donald Trump declared, "Polls say they BOTH lose to 'Trump'."

There may come a day on which the president learns how quotation marks work, and while that will be glorious, today is not that day.

Nevertheless, Trump's timing could be better. While the Republican apparently wants people to believe that polls show Biden and Sanders trailing in hypothetical 2020 match-ups, just yesterday two leading pollsters pointed in the opposite direction.

Take the latest Quinnipiac findings, for example.

In head to head matchups with President Trump among registered voters, Biden gets support from more than half of registered voters against the incumbent president, while Sanders does not. Biden leads Trump 52 - 41 percent, and Sanders leads Trump 49 - 42 percent.

The report quoted Quinnipiac University Poll Analyst Tim Malloy saying, "Perhaps most troubling for the Trump camp in these numbers is the comparative assessment of which candidate can handle a crisis: it is Biden hands down. Couple that with an approval rating frozen in the low forties and comparatively terrible numbers on leadership, honesty, and empathy for fellow Americans, and team Trump has a formidable fight ahead."


Posted by babylonsister | Tue Mar 10, 2020, 10:31 AM (10 replies)

Officials say Trump's promise of a coronavirus economic plan was 'news to everyone on the inside'

Still flying by the seat of his (burning) pants...


Officials say Trump's promise of a coronavirus economic plan was 'news to everyone on the inside'
Laura Clawson
Daily Kos Staff
Tuesday March 10, 2020 · 10:10 AM EDT

Donald Trump promised on Monday that on Tuesday his administration would roll out a plan to combat the economic effects of the coronavirus outbreak. That came as a surprise to the people who would have to come up with such a plan, CNBC reports.

Trump suggested in his Monday press conference that economic measures might include payroll tax cuts, support for hourly workers who are losing income, and help to industries affected by the outbreak, like cruise lines and airlines. He said more details would be coming in a Tuesday press conference. But “That was news to everyone on the inside,” an administration official told CNBC, and the details of a plan are “not there right now.”

Economic adviser Larry Kudlow and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin will discuss options with Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and other Republicans on Tuesday prior to the press conference, and the White House is reaching out to Wall Street executives for their thoughts. Because why would you include Democrats in the discussion, with their silly little ideas like paid sick leave?

Effectively fighting COVID-19 could be its own form of stimulus, The New York Times editorial board suggested, calling for “Huge spending on public health,” including “staffing health facilities, testing for the coronavirus and equipment to keep workers safe.” That wouldn’t just protect people from getting sick (thereby keeping the economy running more smoothly) or help treat those who are sick, the editorial board pointed out: “every dollar spent on public health provides just as much of an economic boost as would spending on anything else.”

There are so many things to do that make sense for public health, but instead Trump is out there dropping bombshells on his own staff and turning to the all-purpose Republican economic plan of more tax cuts.
Posted by babylonsister | Tue Mar 10, 2020, 10:21 AM (5 replies)

Incompetence Exacerbated by Malevolence


Incompetence Exacerbated by Malevolence
The coronavirus has dangerously inverted a long-standing White House theme.
6:30 AM ET
Quinta Jurecic
Contributing writer at The Atlantic and managing editor of Lawfare
Benjamin Wittes
Contributing writer at The Atlantic and editor in chief of Lawfare

Throughout the many disasters that have befallen the Trump administration, one theme has remained a constant: malevolence tempered by incompetence. That description emerged from a text-message conversation between the two of us in January 2017, the day after the release of the president’s first travel ban. Chaos was erupting at ports of entry around the country. U.S. permanent residents were being denied entry. Courts were getting involved. Protesters and lawyers were assembling at airports. And yet, the worst consequences were averted, because the travel ban was so ineptly conceived and executed that it was quickly put on hold and later substantially rolled back.

The phrase took on a life of its own, because so many other events of the past three years followed a similar pattern. The New York Times columnist Paul Krugman used it to describe the botched Republican effort to undo the Affordable Care Act. Senator Ed Markey pointed to it in condemning the administration’s failure to care for immigrant children separated from their families at the U.S.-Mexico border. Describing the president’s slapdash trade policy, the podcaster Mike Pesca suggested that a better formulation might be “malevolence tempered by incompetence shot through with mendacity”—emphasizing the pervasiveness of Donald Trump’s lies in the conduct of his administration.

Now, however, the disease known as COVID-19 has upended this theme altogether. As the former Justice Department official Carrie Cordero declared on Twitter: “To invert a @benjaminwittes formulation, the Trump administration #COVID19 response might be characterized as incompetence exacerbated by malevolence.”


In a true disaster, the malevolence never successfully covers up the incompetence. It can do so for a while. But the disaster is ultimately uncontainable.

This past spring, HBO aired a timely miniseries dramatizing the 1986 nuclear meltdown at Chernobyl. There is a great deal of difference, of course, between Chernobyl and an pandemic. But one early scene from the series is particularly resonant: The chief engineer of the power plant is informed that a nuclear reactor has likely exploded. Instead of listening to his worried employee, he screams that the man is mistaken and that the evidence of the explosion isn’t real. Minutes later, the chief engineer vomits and loses consciousness—poisoned by a massive dose of radiation.

Trump is making a similar error now to the one the Chinese government made a couple of months ago and to the one HBO portrays the chief engineer at Chernobyl as having made. The president can’t pretend the virus does not exist. He can’t suppress news of it, unlike the Chinese Communist Party or the Soviet government in 1986. But he can berate those who report on it honestly. He can deny its severity. He can lie about it—all until the moment at which he can’t anymore, the moment at which the malevolence no longer covers up the incompetence but amplifies it, at great human cost.

Posted by babylonsister | Tue Mar 10, 2020, 08:39 AM (2 replies)

Cancel Everything

I hope we try to learn from history.


Cancel Everything
Social distancing is the only way to stop the coronavirus. We must start immediately.
6:30 AM ET
Yascha Mounk


Finally, the most important responsibility falls on each of us. It’s hard to change our own behavior while the administration and the leaders of other important institutions send the social cue that we should go on as normal. But we must change our behavior anyway. If you feel even a little sick, for the love of your neighbor and everyone’s grandpa, do not go to work.

When the influenza epidemic of 1918 infected a quarter of the U.S. population, killing tens of millions of people, seemingly small choices made the difference between life and death.

As the disease was spreading, Wilmer Krusen, Philadelphia’s health commissioner, allowed a huge parade to take place on September 28th; some 200,000 people marched. In the following days and weeks, the bodies piled up in the city’s morgues. By the end of the season, 12,000 residents had died.

In St. Louis, a public health commissioner named Max Starkloff decided to shut the city down. Ignoring the objections of influential businessmen, he closed the city’s schools, bars, cinemas, and sporting events. Thanks to his bold and unpopular actions, the per capita fatality rate in St. Louis was half that of Philadelphia. (In total roughly 1,700 people died from influenza in St Louis.)

In the coming days, thousands of people across the country will face the choice between becoming a Wilmer Krusen or a Max Starkloff.

In the moment, it will seem easier to follow Krusen’s example. For a few days, while none of your peers are taking the same steps, moving classes online or canceling campaign events will seem profoundly odd. People are going to get angry. You will be ridiculed as an extremist or an alarmist. But it is still the right thing to do.
Posted by babylonsister | Tue Mar 10, 2020, 08:31 AM (44 replies)

Woman pardoned by Trump challenges Rep. John Lewis for Congressional seat

Hmmm. The dreaded quid pro quo strikes again.

Woman pardoned by Trump challenges Rep. John Lewis for Congressional seat
The Georgia race for the House of Representatives just got a little more interesting as Angela Stanton-King opposes state's most senior Democrat
By Dawn Onley -
March 9, 2020

Ex-con Angela Stanton-King, who was exonerated by President Donald Trump last month, appears to be returning the favor. She announced she’s running as a Republican for Congress against beloved Democratic Georgia Rep. John Lewis.

Trump pardoned Stanton-King after she finished a “six-month home confinement sentence in 2007 for her role in a stolen vehicle ring,” reported The Washington Examiner. Now, Stanton-King is a best-selling author and TV political pundit who has taken on the Republican platform in an attempt to win Lewis’ seat.

“I have the utmost respect for the contributions that (Lewis) has made to Black America,” Stanton-King told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution in an interview last week. “However, this isn’t the Selma bridge, and our babies are dying. It is time for war.”

Stanton-King, who has never held office before, wrote on Twitter that she is “Pro GOD Pro LIFE Pro WOMAN Pro AMERICA Pro TRUMP and PRO COMMON SENSE” and included the American flag emoji.


Posted by babylonsister | Mon Mar 9, 2020, 09:45 PM (11 replies)

Republican Mayor Drops Donald Trump for Joe Biden in Key Swing State of Michigan

More of this!!

Republican Mayor Drops Donald Trump for Joe Biden in Key Swing State of Michigan
By Jeffery Martin On 3/9/20 at 9:21 PM EDT

With Tuesday's Democratic primaries hours away, former Vice President Joe Biden has found an unexpected supporter in Sterling Heights, Michigan Mayor Michael Taylor, a Republican.

"Since announcing my endorsement of Joe Biden I have received an outpouring of encouraging messages and believe even more strongly that Joe Biden is the candidate who can defeat Donald Trump in Macomb County and the State of Michigan," Taylor said in a statement to Newsweek on Monday.

While Taylor, a life-long Republican, voted for President Donald Trump in 2016, he said he would cast his ballot for Biden this year because Trump is "deranged."

"I think Joe Biden is the candidate who can unify all of the Democrats and he's the candidate who can appeal to moderates and Republicans like me who don't want to see four more years of President Trump," Taylor said, according to the Chicago Tribune on Monday


Posted by babylonsister | Mon Mar 9, 2020, 08:56 PM (20 replies)

Democrats launch major Florida organizing effort

Democrats launch major Florida organizing effort
Trump’s reelection campaign has already fully integrated the GOP turnout machine assembled by the state GOP and the RNC.
03/09/2020 11:11 AM EDT
Updated: 03/09/2020 12:36 PM EDT

MIAMI — Democrats have launched a new phase in their Florida ground war. Organizing Together 2020, a battleground-state initiative, announced its leadership team and plans to put more than 100 paid staff on the ground in 30 of the state’s 67 counties.

Chaired by the only statewide elected Democrat — Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried — Organizing Together 2020 is one of four groups independently operating in Florida, including the Democratic Party, the For Our Future super PAC and billionaire Mike Bloomberg’s political committee which is being converted from the remnants of his just-ended presidential campaign.

Florida takes on a singular importance this year because it’s the swing state Trump needs to carry to win reelection and, as of late last year, it’s officially his home state after switching residency and registering to vote here.

“It’s all hands on deck to beat Donald Trump,” said Ashley Walker, Organizing Together’s lead consultant in the state, who helped lead President Barack Obama’s successful elections in Florida.

“Florida is too big to start late — there’s too much at stake for us to wait,” she said. “Trump is here every other week, so it’s time for us to get moving.”


Posted by babylonsister | Mon Mar 9, 2020, 08:13 PM (2 replies)

Obama Fundraiser Calls on 700 Bundlers to Back Biden


Obama Fundraiser Calls on 700 Bundlers to Back Biden
March 9, 2020 at 5:12 pm EDT By Taegan Goddard

Rufus Gifford, the architect of President Barack Obama’s 2012 fundraising juggernaut, has reached out to more than 700 bundlers in a bid to convince them to back Joe Biden’s candidacy as he rides momentum from his Super Tuesday triumphs, CNBC reports.
Posted by babylonsister | Mon Mar 9, 2020, 08:02 PM (0 replies)

Bloomberg donates $2 million to register black voters in key states

Bloomberg donates $2 million to register black voters in key states
By Tim Perry and Stefan Becket
March 9, 2020 / 12:02 PM / CBS News

Washington — Fresh off his departure from the race for the Democratic presidential nomination, former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg has poured $2 million into efforts to boost turnout by African-American voters in eight key states, an indication of his intention to continue bankrolling Democratic causes ahead of November's elections.

"Voter suppression efforts across the country have been a barely disguised effort to keep Black Americans and other Democratic-leaning voters from the polls," Bloomberg said in a statement on Monday. "I've always believed we need to make it easier for all citizens to register and vote, not harder."

The $2 million donation, as first reported by The Washington Post, will go to the group Collective Future. A Bloomberg aide said the former mayor signed off on the donation before he exited the race following Super Tuesday last week, and the funds were transferred to the group on Friday. The donation has been in the works for six weeks, the aide said.

Collective Future is the nonprofit arm of The Collective PAC, whose mission is to "fix the challenge of African American underrepresentation in elected seats of power throughout our nation."

Collective Future said in a release that the funds will be used to partner with civic groups and hire field organizers to boost voter registrations in Alabama, Georgia, Florida, Michigan, North Carolina, South Carolina, Texas and Wisconsin, with the goal of registering 500,000 black voters.

"There is a critical need for Black voter engagement across the country in the 2020 election and beyond and we are deeply grateful to Mike Bloomberg for his partnership and dedication to this critical cause," Quentin James, president of The Collective, said in a statement. "His significant financial contribution will propel our work to historic levels and we are hopeful that this game-changing investment will be supported and replicated by those who embrace the need to advance the Black community."


Posted by babylonsister | Mon Mar 9, 2020, 02:58 PM (14 replies)
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