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babylonsister

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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: 166,253

Journal Archives

Judge rules against Trump global media chief after firings

Good. No, great.


Judge rules against Trump global media chief after firings
Michael Pack, a conservative filmmaker and Trump ally, made no secret of his intent to shake up the agency after taking over in June.
Nov. 21, 2020, 3:12 PM EST / Source: Associated Press
By The Associated Press


WASHINGTON — A federal judge has ruled against the head of the agency that runs the Voice of America and other U.S.-funded news outlets who was accused of trying to turn it into a propaganda vehicle to promote President Donald Trump’s agenda.

The ruling effectively bars U.S. Agency for Global Media CEO Michael Pack from making personnel decisions and interfering in editorial operations.

Pack, a conservative filmmaker, Trump ally and onetime associate of former Trump political adviser Steve Bannon, made no secret of his intent to shake up the agency after taking over in June.

He proceeded to purge the leadership at Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, Radio Free Asia, Middle East Broadcasting Networks and the Open Technology Fund, which works to provide secure internet access to people around the world. The director and deputy director of VOA resigned just days before the firings. Pack also dismissed their governing boards.

more...

https://www.nbcnews.com/politics/donald-trump/judge-rules-against-trump-global-media-chief-after-firings-n1248522
Posted by babylonsister | Sat Nov 21, 2020, 08:34 PM (2 replies)

Bipartisan group of GA teens is trying to flip the Senate by enlisting thousands of students...




A bipartisan group of Georgia teens is trying to flip the Senate by enlisting thousands of students to vote in the January runoffs
Kelsey Vlamis
10 hours ago


A bipartisan group of Georgia teens, StudentsFor2020, wants to help flip the Senate by enlisting thousands of students to vote in the January runoffs.

About 23,000 Georgia teens who were not eligible to vote in the general election on November 3 will turn 18 and become eligible in time to participate in the runoff elections on January 5, according to The Civics Center.

StudentsFor2020, which estimates they helped 65,000 students register for the general election, is mobilizing hundreds of volunteers in high schools across the state to register new voters, and to try to sway existing moderate voters.



A bipartisan group of Georgia teens is trying to flip the Senate by enlisting thousands of students to vote in the January runoffs.

The political organization, StudentsFor2020, was founded by four high school students, two Trump supporters and two Biden supporters, with the goal of registering young voters across the US in the places where their votes would matter most in the general election. They estimate they helped 65,000 students register to vote.

Now they're focusing their efforts on flipping the Senate by registering thousands of newly eligible voters and mobilizing hundreds of teen volunteers to have real conversations with high school students across the state.

more...

https://www.businessinsider.com/georgia-senate-runoff-young-voters-movement-flip-the-senate-2020-11
Posted by babylonsister | Sat Nov 21, 2020, 08:23 PM (29 replies)

Masks work: Show this to the mask skeptic in your life

https://www.dailykos.com/stories/2020/11/21/1997336/-Masks-work-Show-this-to-the-mask-skeptic-in-your-life

Masks work: Show this to the mask skeptic in your life
Mark Sumner
Daily Kos Staff
Saturday November 21, 2020 · 9:01 AM EST


It’s hard to imagine, but on the same day that America logged over 200,000 cases of COVID-19 for the first time, with record levels of hospitalization in two dozen states, and levels of death reaching numbers not seen since the disease first plowed over the East Coast in the spring, Republican Rep. Jim Jordan was on Twitter—screaming for schools to stay open and ordering everyone to have big holiday get-togethers. Gym Jordan, everyone: the man so desperate for attention, he doesn’t care how many people have to die to raise his online profile.

However, what’s even more unbelievable is that Twitter, Instagram, and especially Facebook are still overrun with a very special breed of COVID-19-denier: the mask skeptic. Posts claiming that “masks don’t work,” that “cloth can’t stop a pathogen,” and links to old studies on masks and flu are almost as prolific as the virus itself. Assuming these are not all coming from Russian bots, there are a lot of Americans out there who are still amazingly confused about the fastest, easiest, and most effective way to slow transmission of COVID-19.

So here are two studies to show that it’s not just an opinion, or an attempt to cover America’s oh-so-manly chin. Masks work.

When people make claims about masks not working, they almost invariably point back to an early statement from Dr. Anthony Fauci in which he refused to endorse mask wearing for the general public. The most common reason given later, including by Fauci, is that masks were then in short supply, and there was real concern about the limited number of virus-filtering N95 masks becoming unavailable to healthcare workers. That’s true. And, believe it or not, despite all Donald Trump’s bragging about PPE production since then, there are still not enough of these high quality masks available for the healthcare workers and first responders who desperately need them.

But the bigger reason why there was no recommendation for masks at the start of the pandemic was simple enough: No evidence. That doesn’t mean that Fauci and others thought masks didn’t work. It means that, lacking evidence, they were extremely reluctant to push mask wearing, out of fear it might it might distract from the other things they already knew would be effective — like social distancing.

What changed since then is simple: Evidence. Multiple studies around the world showed that masks were highly effective in reducing COVID-19. So effective that in countries like Japan, where the disease made an early entry, and where the government response was slow and more than a little bumbling, the disease was still hugely constrained by the public’s habit of wearing masks. As of this writing, Japan (population 127 million) has fewer cases of COVID-19 than Utah (population 3 million). Masks are a big part of that difference.

But if you’re still skeptical, here are those studies.


Study 1: Kansas

Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly was a real standout in the Midwest when she issued an executive order requiring masks in public places on July 3. And the response was about what you might expect in Kansas: social media meltdowns, people staging scenes at their local big box store, and death threats against both Kelly and local officials.

As the second surge of COVID-19 spread over the South during the summer, even Republican governors like Greg Abbott in Texas and Doug Ducey in Arizona allowed county officials to create their own mask mandates if they wanted—an action that effectively ended the growth of that surge.

But Kelly did it the other way around: She issued a state mandate, then allowed county governments to pull out if they wanted. This being Kansas, 81 mostly rural counties struck down the mandate in their area over the next few weeks. But 24 other counties left the mandate in place. So Kansas became something of a hodge-podge, with about a quarter of the state requiring masks, and about three-quarters flouting their bare faces.

And how did that go?

After July 3, COVID-19 incidence decreased in 24 counties with mask mandates but continued to increase in 81 counties without mask mandates.


Just like that. Despite being in different parts of the state; despite a wide variety of conditions; despite having unmasked counties as neighbors on all sides: Counties that required public use of masks saw declines in COVID-19. And this effect was not a small one. Counties that wore masks included some of those with the highest rates of COVID-19 before the mandate. They went from increasing cases before the mandate to decreasing cases after the mandate. Counties that did not wear masks had only continued increases.

All of this is available on the CDC website, with analysis and discussion.



Study 2: St. Louis

For those who don’t live in the area, St. Louis the city and St. Louis County are two separate things—more like two neighboring counties than a city in a county. St. Louis is a mid-sized city of about 300,000. St. Louis County includes several other small cities, and totals about a million more; a million more people live in largely suburban areas in the surrounding counties.

St. Louis and St. Louis County also happen to have Democratic leadership in a state that is increasingly scarlet. Unlike Laura Kelly in Kansas, Missouri Gov. Mike Parson has been decidedly against a state mandate on masks (even after he caught COVID-19 himself at a mask-free political gathering). However, St. Louis City and St. Louis County did impose mask mandates.

And how did that go?

Mask mandates in St. Louis and St. Louis County quickly and drastically slowed coronavirus infection rates this summer compared with outlying counties.


Twelve weeks in, the growth rate of COVID-19 was cut by 40% in the mandate area, as compared to the surrounding counties with no mandate. Not only that, the rate was cut even more among “essential workers,” who had to stay on the job without the luxury of being able to work from home. The result was that the mask mandate was particularly good at protecting communities of color. Where there was no mask mandate, communities were particularly hard hit, because people were more likely to be working retail and food industry jobs that brought them in contact with more maskless people.


In neither Kansas nor St. Louis did a mask mandate eliminate the threat of COVID-19. In the St. Louis study, it didn’t even manage to reverse the growth rate. It just significantly reduced it. Researchers have a pretty good idea why. Many of the people who work during the day in St. Louis and St. Louis County commute from the non-mandate counties in surrounding areas. The same kind of churn was happening with those Kansas counties with mask mandates. So those areas still saw a constant influx of infection from the non-mandate counties.

Masks aren’t perfect. But then, nothing is. Not even the best vaccines. What masks are is cheap, easy, fast, and highly effective.
Posted by babylonsister | Sat Nov 21, 2020, 11:47 AM (13 replies)

Why We're Numb to 250,000 Deaths

https://politicalwire.com/2020/11/21/why-were-numb-to-250000-deaths/

Why We’re Numb to 250,000 Deaths
November 21, 2020 at 10:56 am EST By Taegan Goddard


“The U.S. passed 250,000 confirmed deaths from COVID-19 this week, a figure that is truly vast — too vast, perhaps, for us to comprehend,” Axios reports.

“The psychic numbing that sets in around mass death saps us of our empathy for victims and discourages us from making the sacrifices needed to control the pandemic, while it hampers our ability to prepare for other rare but potentially catastrophic risks down the road.”
Posted by babylonsister | Sat Nov 21, 2020, 11:38 AM (13 replies)

GOP lawmaker patience runs thin with Trump tactics


GOP lawmaker patience runs thin with Trump tactics
By Alexander Bolton - 11/21/20 08:03 AM EST

snip//

Instead, a growing number of Republicans are publicly acknowledging that Joe Biden is likely to be the next president and calling on the Trump administration to begin sharing intelligence and other transitions to allow for a smooth transfer of power.

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), who is close to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), on Friday issued a statement asserting Biden “has a very good chance” of being the next president and urging the administration “to provide the Biden team with all transition materials, resources, and meetings necessary to ensure a smooth transition.”

Alexander, the chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, emphasized the importance of the next president being ready to distribute an anticipated COVID-19 vaccine.

“The prompt and orderly transfer or reaffirmation of immense power after a presidential election is the most enduring symbol of our democracy,” he said.


Rep. Fred Upton (R), a veteran Michigan lawmaker, on Friday said, “I’m not seeing any evidence of fraud that would overturn 150,000-some-odd votes,” referring to Biden’s margin of victory in Michigan.

Upton’s state was at the center of the storm this week. Trump on Thursday invited Republican legislators from Michigan to come to the White House on Friday to discuss the state’s pending certification of the election results. A tally reported by The Associated Press shows Biden leading Trump by more than 155,000 votes in Michigan.

Upton said he didn’t know how Trump’s legal team could achieve success.

“I don’t know what path they’re on,” he said.

Rep. Kay Granger (R-Texas) on Friday said she had “great concerns” about Trump’s persistence in trying to invalidate the results of the election.

“It think that it’s time to move on,” she told CNN. “I think it’s time for him to really realize and be very clear about what’s going on.”


more...

https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/526962-gop-lawmaker-patience-runs-thin-with-trump-tactics
Posted by babylonsister | Sat Nov 21, 2020, 08:18 AM (5 replies)

The World Moves on as Trump Keeps Fighting

https://politicalwire.com/2020/11/21/the-world-moves-on-as-trump-keeps-fighting/

The World Moves on as Trump Keeps Fighting
November 21, 2020 at 7:36 am EST By Taegan Goddard


New York Times: “It is as if the vast machinery of diplomacy, business and lobbying has suddenly been recalibrated for the Biden era. Mr. Trump, by far the dominant world figure for the past four years, is increasingly treated as irrelevant.”

“Bank trade groups have begun meeting with Biden aides in anticipation of new fights over regulation. Foreign diplomats assuming a sharp turn in American foreign policy are retooling their agendas. Corporate executives, who are usually allergic to political statements, are saying out loud what most of Mr. Trump’s supporters have so far refused to acknowledge.”
Posted by babylonsister | Sat Nov 21, 2020, 07:43 AM (0 replies)

President-elect Joe Biden's transition team is one of the most diverse ever


President-elect Joe Biden’s transition team is one of the most diverse ever
Biden wants his administration to “look like America.” His transition team is a start.
By Li Zhouli@vox.com Nov 20, 2020, 2:40pm EST


President-elect Joe Biden is now in the process of staffing his administration and he’s highlighted a key priority: Building a team that “looks like America.”

According to data he’s shared, Biden’s transition team is one of the most diverse ever — representation that advocates hope they’ll continue to see as the administration works on broader White House staffing and Cabinet picks.

Thus far, 46 percent of Biden’s transition staff are people of color and 41 percent of senior staff are people of color. More than half of the transition staff — 52 percent — are women, and 53 percent of senior staff are women.

When it comes to the Agency Review Teams (ART) — individuals who are focused on the transfer of power at individual agencies — a majority of the roughly 500 people on them are also women, and about 40 percent are members of groups underrepresented in the federal government, including people of color, members of the LGBTQ community, and people with disabilities. As the Associated Press reported, Black men and women are leading over a quarter of the ART teams.

Biden and his team have repeatedly emphasized that diversity is a major priority for them as they prepare for the change in administration.
And America supports this move: According to a Vox/Data for Progress poll, 49 percent of all likely voters and 72 percent of Democrats believe his Cabinet should reflect the gender and racial diversity of the country.

more...

https://www.vox.com/21573829/president-elect-joe-biden-transition-team-staffing-diversity
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Nov 20, 2020, 03:13 PM (3 replies)

Pelosi Calls Trump a 'Psychopathic Nut'

https://politicalwire.com/2020/11/20/pelosi-calls-trump-a-psychopathic-nut/

Pelosi Calls Trump a ‘Psychopathic Nut’
November 20, 2020 at 1:04 pm EST By Taegan Goddard


Speaker Nancy Pelosi said on a House Democratic leadership call Thursday night that President Trump is a “psychopathic nut,” Politico reports.
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Nov 20, 2020, 03:08 PM (56 replies)

Ben Carson Used Unproven COVID Treatment Recommended By The MyPillow Guy



https://crooksandliars.com/2020/11/ben-carson-used-unproven-treatment


11/19/20 10:00am
Read time: 1 minute
84 comments
Ben Carson Used Unproven COVID Treatment Recommended By The MyPillow Guy
“Anybody who has ever gotten covid and taken it, they are fine in five hours, and the next day are running around playing floor hockey in the hallway,” said Mike Lindell.
By Ed Scarce


Lindell recommended oleander extract from a company he just happened to have a financial interest in. Within hours Ben Carson's symptoms are said to have magically disappeared. It's unclear if Ben Carson also now has a financial interest or not. Back in August, both of them were promoting the dietary supplement as "a cure" to Trump.

Snake oil salesmen, all of them.


Source: Washington Post

When Ben Carson, Trump’s secretary of housing and urban development, came down with covid-19 last week, the former surgeon wasn’t worried. He had a Guy for that.

“I heard about the oleander extract from Mike,” Carson said in an interview.

“Mike” is Mike Lindell, the pillow magnate who served as a Trump campaign chairman in Minnesota; oleander extract is an unproven therapeutic remedy for the coronavirus that Lindell has been pushing.

Carson said he took the extract, which has not been approved for such purposes by the FDA and which experts say may be dangerous, and within hours his symptoms disappeared — to the delight of Lindell, who has a financial stake in the company that makes the extract.

“Anybody who has ever gotten covid and taken it, they are fine in five hours, and the next day are running around playing floor hockey in the hallway,” said Lindell, who has pitched the Trump administration on its effectiveness (which, again, has not been proved).


Posted by babylonsister | Fri Nov 20, 2020, 12:54 PM (9 replies)

The Rude Pundit: Rudy Giuliani Is Sweating His Hair Color Off for America

https://rudepundit.blogspot.com/2020/11/rudy-giuliani-is-sweating-his-hair.html


The Rude Pundit
Proudly lowering the level of political discourse
11/19/2020
Rudy Giuliani Is Sweating His Hair Color Off for America

snip//

Giuliani sputtered and yelped and gesticulated and performed, like a coked-out old porn actor who can't get a hard-on no matter how much Viagra or dick injections he takes. He insisted, "We cannot allow these crooks, because that’s what they are, to steal an election from the American people. They elected Donald Trump. They didn’t elect Joe Biden. Joe Biden is in the lead because of the fraudulent ballots, the illegal ballots, that were produced and that were allowed to be used, after the election was over."

Powell insisted, "President Trump won by a landslide. We are going to prove it, and we are going to reclaim the United States of America for the people who vote for freedom." That would be a conspiracy to commit election fraud so huge, involving so many people, that it would be easier just to organize a military coup.

And Ellis insisted, "We want to make sure to protect election integrity and your President, President Trump, we are so proud that he is in this fight, because he understands that when he swore his oath of office, he swore an oath to uphold and defend the United States Constitution."

That shit is laughable. The president who has wiped his sweaty nutsack with the Constitution isn't worth defending. But this isn't even about defending Trump. It's about ensuring that his hordes of morons stay inside the reality that Trump has constructed for them. To acknowledge Biden's victory, to legitimize the election in any way is to pierce through the orange viscous goo that surrounds Trump voters and all the lackeys and enablers around him. It would break the sucking hose that goes from the pockets and bank accounts of the rubes and right into the accounts of Trump's neverending campaign and his bullshit PAC, the same money that is funding these clownish charlatans, losing worthless case after worthless case, who are luxuriating in the pain of a nation.

And all these bastards, from Trump on down, need to be charged with sedition and tossed behind bars.
Posted by babylonsister | Fri Nov 20, 2020, 09:12 AM (7 replies)
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