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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: 170,104

Journal Archives

Texas School District Swerves Around Abbott's Mandate Ban by Adding Masks to Dress Code


Texas School District Swerves Around Abbott’s Mandate Ban by Adding Masks to Dress Code
Jamie Ross, News Correspondent
Published Aug. 18, 2021 5:19AM ET

One small Texas school district has found a crafty way to get round Gov. Greg Abbott’s executive order banning face-mask mandates in classrooms. Abbott, who tested positive for the coronavirus Tuesday after attending a maskless and packed GOP event, has threatened schools with legal action if they dare to defy his order that bans public buildings from requiring mask-wearing. According to NBC News, Paris Independent School District has managed to swerve around that order simply by adding masks to its dress code. “The Board believes the dress code can be used to mitigate communicable health issues, and therefore has amended the PISD dress code to protect our students and employees,” the district said in a statement. “Nothing in the Governor’s Executive Order 38 states he has suspended Chapter 11 of the Texas Education Code, and therefore the Board has elected to amend its dress code consistent with its statutory authority.”
Posted by babylonsister | Wed Aug 18, 2021, 04:51 AM (5 replies)

"Why Let Them Go to Waste?":America's Most Affluent Class Is Scheming Its Way Into a 3rd COVID Shot


“Why Let Them Go to Waste?”: America’s Most Affluent Class Is Scheming Its Way Into a Third COVID Shot
As the delta variant sideswipes America, those who jumped the line the first time are angling for an illicit booster, in some cases traveling to different counties or states and devising fake names. “Even if you’re sneaking to get a third shot,” says one person planning on it, “it’s not like you’re taking it from someone else.”
By Nick Bilton
August 11, 2021


Now that more than 166 million Americans have been fully vaccinated, and vaccines are so widely available that anyone in New York City can make an at-home appointment and choose their preferred manufacturer, you’d think the fakery would have ended too. But the delta variant of COVID, a highly contagious mutation of the virus that has led to some breakthrough infections, has changed that. While booster shots aren’t being officially distributed in the United States (yet), many impatient and affluent people are again angling to get a third shot by any means possible.

Once again, the strategies to do so run the gamut. I’ve heard of people in Los Angeles decamping to pharmacies in Orange County for a third shot, and others using different names to pretend they haven’t been vaccinated at all. Others are traveling beyond their counties, and even their states. I’ve heard about emergency room doctors having their cohorts give them third shots.


On the flip side of people trying to sneak a third vaccine are those adamantly against getting one in the first place. In California, the land of gluten-free vegans, intricate outdoor aerobics classes, and baby-food diets (yes, that’s a thing), being an anti-vaxxer wasn’t thought of as all that bad prior to the pandemic. Now, however, those in the anti-vax community have become lepers. One woman with children in Los Angeles, who has not gotten vaccinated and has no plans to do so, said her friendship circles have essentially crumbled over the past few months, and that she’s left spending time with other anti-vaxxers. She lambasted people who are “scared” of anti-vaxxers and said she’s fine being “Zoom friends” with people until they learn it’s the vaccine that’s killing people, not the actual virus. (She is, obviously, incorrect.)

Her position is only becoming less tenable. Over the past several weeks, the Biden administration has mandated that federal workers must attest they’ve been vaccinated or submit to regular testing, mask requirements, and social distancing. Some of the largest employers in the country, including Walmart, Disney, and Tyson Foods, are requiring similar rules for their employees, and restaurants in New York City will require proof of vaccination in order to dine indoors. One invite I recently received for a social event in Los Angeles noted at the bottom, in parentheses: “If you’re not vaccinated—we completely understand, but you should seriously fuck off.”

As COVID’s grip on the country revives arguably due entirely to people who refuse to get their shots, it seems that the vitriol is growing stronger. “I have absolutely no patience for anti-vaxxers,” one Hollywood executive told me. “If they weren’t so fucking stupid and actually got the shot that is proven to save lives, this pandemic would be over in America. We’d have reached herd immunity, the economy would be back to normal, and people wouldn’t be dying in hospitals. Instead, we have a bunch of fucking morons who think Bill Gates is trying to kill them.”
Posted by babylonsister | Tue Aug 17, 2021, 09:32 PM (8 replies)

Christian Radio Host Who Called Vaccine 'Government Control' Dies of COVID-19


Christian Radio Host Who Called Vaccine ‘Government Control’ Dies of COVID-19
Blake Montgomery
Published Aug. 17, 2021 5:14PM ET

A religious radio broadcaster who spread disinformation about the coronavirus vaccines was killed by the virus Sunday. Dr. Jimmy DeYoung Sr. had been admitted to the hospital Aug. 7 with COVID-19 complications, according to his wife Judy, who also contracted the virus. In February, DeYoung published an interview promoting the conspiracy theories that the Pfizer vaccine would make women sterile and that world governments were using the virus and vaccine to centralize power. DeYoung’s guest at the time, Sam Rohrer, said that very few people who were infected lost their lives, calling the vaccine only a “purported solution” and “not truly a vaccine.”

Both host and guest encouraged listeners to read conspiracy-minded materials on the coronavirus vaccine, with DeYoung asking, “Could this vaccine be another form of government control of the people?” DeYoung’s daughter Jodi wrote of his death on Facebook, “God has called a faithful servant home. Dr Jimmy DeYoung passed away early this morning at Memorial Hospital in Chattanooga.” His show, “Prophecy Today,” aired daily. Before focusing on Christian prophecy, DeYoung worked as a journalist in Israel. DeYoung is one of a number of public figures who have died of COVID-19 in recent months after telling their audiences to refuse the jab.
Posted by babylonsister | Tue Aug 17, 2021, 08:01 PM (27 replies)

Alabama Physician Tells Patients Get Vaccinated Or Find A New Doctor


8/17/21 1:31pm
Alabama Physician Tells Patients Get Vaccinated Or Find A New Doctor
"Effective Oct. 1, 2021, Dr. Valentine will no longer see patients that are not vaccinated against COVID-19" read the sign posted on his door.
By Ed Scarce

Dr. Jason Valentine posted the sign on his door, effective October 1, and says it's already getting results, with more patients asking to be vaccinated.

Source: Al.com

An Alabama doctor is taking a bold stance in the efforts to get more people vaccinated against COVID-19.

Dr. Jason Valentine, a physician at Mobile’s Diagnostic and Medical Clinic Infirmary Health, posted a photo on his Facebook page showing him posed next to a sign that says “effective Oct. 1, 2021, Dr. Valentine will no longer see patients that are not vaccinated against COVID-19.”

Since posting the sign, Valentine wrote that three unvaccinated patients asked where they could get a vaccine.

“No conspiracy theories, no excuses. Just where do they go,” he added.

Valentine had a blunt answer for those who asked him about his decision.

“If they asked why, I told them COVID is a miserable way to die and I can’t watch them die like that,” he wrote.


Posted by babylonsister | Tue Aug 17, 2021, 07:02 PM (4 replies)

The Americans Left Behind in Afghanistan

This is disturbing if true...

The Americans Left Behind in Afghanistan
Frantic efforts to rescue U.S. citizens.
Aug. 17, 2021 10:46 am ET

The chaotic nature of the U.S. exit from Afghanistan has shocked American allies and Americans too—including numerous U.S. citizens who are now trapped inside the Taliban-controlled territory. Some American journalists, contractors and aid workers in the country may have made the mistake of believing President Joe Biden’s July assurances and are now desperately seeking a way out.

Washington Post columnist Josh Rogin writes:

As the situation on the ground in Afghanistan’s capital continues to deteriorate, thousands of U.S. citizens are trapped in and around Kabul with no ability to get to the airport, which is their only way out of the country. As Taliban soldiers go door to door, searching for Westerners, these U.S. citizens are now reaching out to anyone and everyone back in Washington for help. The Biden administration must get moving on a plan to rescue them before it’s too late.

There will be plenty of time later to look back on how and why the 20-year American intervention in Afghanistan failed so miserably, why the U.S. withdrawal was so badly mismanaged and how the U.S. government failed to predict that the Taliban would take over the country with almost no resistance. But right now, the No. 1 job of the U.S. government and the roughly 7,000 U.S. troops in or on their way to Kabul must be to rescue American citizens first and then all the Afghans who risked their lives based on America’s promise of safety... President Biden didn’t address the issue of how the U.S. government will assist Americans who aren’t already at the airport during his remarks to the nation Monday afternoon.


Posted by babylonsister | Tue Aug 17, 2021, 02:55 PM (6 replies)

Rick Scott Calls For The 25th Amendment On Biden Then Begs For Florida Disaster Declaration


Posted on Tue, Aug 17th, 2021 by Jason Easley
Rick Scott Calls For The 25th Amendment On Biden Then Begs For Florida Disaster Declaration

Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL) who has presidential delusions, called for the 25th Amendment to be used on Biden, then begged Biden for a Florida disaster declaration.

Rick Scott
After the disastrous events in Afghanistan, we must confront a serious question: Is Joe Biden capable of discharging the duties of his office or has time come to exercise the provisions of the 25th Amendment? https://t.co/l1bFrUdZH9
11:42 AM · Aug 16, 2021

There was nothing in Biden’s powerful and logical speech that would suggest that the President is mentally unfit to carry out his duties. Biden showed his competence and long-term vision for the country with his speech on the Afghanistan withdrawal. Scott’s call was petty politics from a Senator who wants to run for president in 2024.

Rick Scott Also Called On The Same President That He Insulted To Provide Federal Disaster Aid

In typical Republican fashion, Scott called for Biden to be removed from office, then begged the President for a disaster declaration, so that Florida can get federal disaster aid:
Andrew Solender
Fresh off floating Biden's removal via the 25th Amendment, Sen. Rick Scott urges Biden to approve Ron DeSantis' request for disaster relief. https://t.co/Q268phiuja
5:03 PM · Aug 16, 2021

Biden issued the disaster declaration on Monday night.

The American People Support Biden On Afghanistan

Biden’s decision on Afghanistan is widely popular. The American people have been calling for a US troop withdrawal for decades. The media and the Republican Party are way out of step with the American people on Afghanistan.

Rick Scott and the Republicans are setting themselves up to be on the wrong side of another issue.
Posted by babylonsister | Tue Aug 17, 2021, 09:30 AM (8 replies)

Eric Boehlert: Bush doomed Afghanistan when he invaded Iraq; pro-war press won't say so

Bush doomed Afghanistan when he invaded Iraq; pro-war press won’t say so
Never admitting mistakes
Eric Boehlert
2 hr ago


You cannot discuss the rise of the Taliban in 2021 without talking about the U.S.’s doomed Iraq War in 2003. But the press today wants to try.

It’s another example of how pro-Iraq War cheerleaders in the media not only have paid no price for being spectacularly wrong, but they’re still allowed to dictate the parameters of our foreign policy discussion.

“For those of us who remember well how the mainstream media enthusiasm for war helped fuel not just this ill-advised war in Afghanistan twenty years ago, but the even bigger debacle in Iraq, the current media narrative is both bewildering and exhausting,” writes Amanda Marcotte at Salon. “This larger media outrage over the withdrawal is a dark reminder of the pro-war bias in the press that helped create this mess in the first place: luring the American public into thinking a war in Afghanistan could ever end in any other way.”

It’s especially jarring to see the Washington Post and the New York Times lead the way this week with finger-pointing Afghanistan coverage, considering those two outlets played essential roles in supporting the Iraq invasion, which became a turning point for the U.S. presence in Afghanistan.


Posted by babylonsister | Tue Aug 17, 2021, 09:03 AM (33 replies)

Internal Government Watchdog Slams Afghanistan War Effort as Inept and Reckless

Internal Government Watchdog Slams Afghanistan War Effort as Inept and Reckless
“The overall picture is bleak,” writes the inspector general.
AJ Vincens


But the new report from the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction (SIGAR) John Sopko—the official tasked by Congress with monitoring US government spending in Afghanistan—says there’s plenty of blame to go around. SIGAR issues an annual report on the state of the war in Afghanistan, and Sopko’s latest one, released at midnight on Monday night, not only delivers a blistering critique of US actions in Afghanistan but offers lessons for decision-makers for the next time the US government takes over a country and seeks to rebuild it.

“Twenty years later, much has improved, and much has not in Afghanistan,” Sopko writes. “If the goal was to rebuild and leave behind a country that can sustain itself and post little threat to the US national security interests, the overall picture is bleak.”

Sopko notes improvements in life expectancy, GDP, and literacy since the US invasion. But he adds, “Despite these gains, the key question is whether they are commensurate with the U.S. investment or sustainable after a U.S. drawdown. In SIGAR’s analysis, they are neither.”

Sopko writes that the myriad problems and challenges his office and other oversight bodies identified over 13 years—spanning 427 audits, 191 special project reports, 52 quarterly reports, and 10 lessons-learned reports—is “staggering.” Stephen Hadley, a former national security adviser to former President George W. Bush, who launched the war in Afghanistan in October 2001, told Sopko that the US government doesn’t “have a post-conflict stabilization model that works. Every time we have one of these things, it is a pick-up game. I don’t have confidence that if we did it again, we would do any better.”

Sopko’s report goes in depth on seven lessons from the failed campaign: incoherent strategy, timelines divorced from reality and past experience, unsustainable institutions and projects, poorly trained and inexperienced staffing (American and otherwise), persistent lack of security, a failure to understand and apply cultural context, and the inability to accurately measure results while simultaneously declaring “success.”


Posted by babylonsister | Tue Aug 17, 2021, 08:31 AM (4 replies)

The Rude Pundit: When, After All, It Was You and Me: Spreading Blame Where It Belongs for the War...


The Rude Pundit
Proudly lowering the level of political discourse
When, After All, It Was You and Me: Spreading Blame Where It Belongs for the War in Afghanistan


You wanted war. You already hated the Taliban for how they were making life a living hell for women because of their bullshit adherence to bullshit Sharia law. You wanted al-Qaeda destroyed because you were told, over and over, that 9/11 changed everything. You wanted blood. And you can sit there and try to say you didn't want this, but, really, c'mon, the best you can do is that sometime five or seven years after the war's start, you finally started to think, "Whoa, this is way fucked up."

Or maybe it was even longer. In June 2009, a Pew Research poll showed that 57% of Americans, including 45% of Democrats, still thought that we should stay in Afghanistan. 76% said that it would be a "major threat" to the U.S. if the Taliban regained control of Afghanistan. By September 2009, the support for the war would finally drop to 50% and it continued downward. The surge in troops that President Obama did (against then Vice President Joe Biden's advice), with the accompanying rise in American casualties in the war, seemed to turn the tide, with support, already dropping, bottoming out for Democrats.

Clearly, if we're judging things by public support, we should have gotten the fuck out of Afghanistan in 2009 and not stayed for another dozen years before facing the inevitable. But the American public bears the burden of fighting this war that was misguided from the start. Americans needed pounds of flesh, needed to get repaid for the murder of Americans with multiple degrees of interest on that debt.

I wish we had been wrong, those of use who opposed the war. I wish we had set up a glorious oasis of democracy and freedom, with schools, with alternate crops for the poppy farmers, with modernization of the nation. Yeah, that's my Western mindset at work, sure, but when it comes to the horror that Afghan women in particular are facing, well, fuck it.

This is a tragedy. It was never not going to be a tragedy. Yes, President Biden was brave to decide this was a mistake and it was time to stop making it, even if the speed at which Afghanistan fell was breathtaking (and truly telling). We should be letting in refugees by the tens of thousands, at least those Afghans who helped our troops during this disaster, if not thousands upon thousands more. We couldn't shoot our way to peace. We poured in money and killed so many people and had so many killed. And still we promised more than we could ever deliver. Let's at least own our role in ruining their lives.

(Note: Of course, the real villains here are the Taliban. Fuck those delusional incel motherfuckers.)

(Note: If you want to know what the Afghans were thinking in the first decade of the war, check out this report.)
Posted by babylonsister | Tue Aug 17, 2021, 05:11 AM (5 replies)

Trump pretends he's a credible critic of Biden's Afghanistan policy

Can you say hypocrite, again?

Trump pretends he's a credible critic of Biden's Afghanistan policy
Trump apparently wants to be seen as a credible critic of Biden's Afghanistan policy. Given the Republican's record, that's ridiculous.
Aug. 16, 2021, 8:54 AM EDT
By Steve Benen

Donald Trump is apparently aware of developments in Afghanistan, watching television from his New Jersey golf resort, and he wants the public to know he's not pleased with his presidential successor.

"[President Biden] ran out of Afghanistan instead of following the plan our Administration left for him -- a plan that protected our people and our property, and ensured the Taliban would never dream of taking our Embassy or providing a base for new attacks against America. The withdrawal would be guided by facts on the ground," Trump said in a statement.


Over the weekend, the current president said in a statement, "When I came to office, I inherited a deal cut by my predecessor -- which he invited the Taliban to discuss at Camp David on the eve of 9/11 of 2019 -- that left the Taliban in the strongest position militarily since 2001 and imposed a May 1, 2021 deadline on U.S. Forces. Shortly before he left office, he also drew U.S. Forces down to a bare minimum of 2,500. Therefore, when I became president, I faced a choice -- follow through on the deal, with a brief extension to get our forces and our allies' forces out safely, or ramp up our presence and send more American troops to fight once again in another country's civil conflict."

All of this may seem self-serving for Biden, but the statement had the benefit of being accurate. Trump cut a deal that left the Taliban in a good position. Trump also invited the Taliban to Camp David shortly before the anniversary of 9/11.

At one point, the Trump administration suggested that Taliban might somehow partner with the United States, working "alongside of us to destroy" al Qaeda.

Several months later, Trump announced shortly before Election Day 2020 that he was ending the war in Afghanistan and bringing all troops home "by Christmas."


Posted by babylonsister | Mon Aug 16, 2021, 10:31 AM (2 replies)
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