THE EIGHT MYTHS OF COVID-19

Not all that the White House says is true

Donald Trump is a damn bully and the best way to deal with him is to stand up to him. Aside from the on-going self-adulation, dislocated policies and dangerous theories, Trump has managed to confuse his experts, the leaders in the House and Senate, and bamboozle his employers, the American public. I am not a doctor or virologist, but I know how to read and research and today I’d like to bring some logic into the public realm.

As we nearly reach 144,000 coronavirus deaths with four million infected Americans, let’s look at the lies, the myths, the misdirects and the reckless musings of an idiot:

  1. The COVID-19 virus is a novel virus, meaning it has not been seen before and thwarting this evil germ will take techniques that differ from the way doctors treat a flu. The first myth from Donald Trump and many other crazy dictators and leaders around the world was that COVID-19 was just like the flu and not as dangerous. The numbers show otherwise. The global pandemic is twice to four times as dangerous. It’s just math, not myth.
  2. The idea of one country containing a virus might be a semi-valid criticism, and just like Donald Trump downplayed the virus at its start here, President Xi in China did the same. Their motivation was stock market stability. Trump’s over-stated fantasy claimed that he saved two million lives. He also said that keeping the death count below 100,000 would be a total success. What? If we could have confined the virus to those first hotspot states, Washington, California and the tri-state area of New York, we would have saved many of the lives that are now lost. It’s a damn myth that China could have stopped the coronavirus and we can’t either. Calling COVID-19 the “China virus” is like calling a mental disability the Trump syndrome.
  3. If you ignore a virus, it will just go away. Trump’s glowing statements about what he has accomplished when facts prove otherwise, make him look senseless. Here’s a great quote from the highly intelligent Ron Brownstein, “In some ways, Trump has become a prisoner of his own base.” He doesn’t test what he’s about to say against any other measure, than what those red hat heretics want to hear. The fact that Trump said, “If we stop testing right now, we’d have very few cases, if any.” Even a dead person, if given the chance, would muster enough strength to suggest, “It’s the death, stupid!”
  4. Keeping people away from work, entertainment and school is going to kill them just the same. Trump and his other propagandists have stated that if the economic shutdown continues, deaths by suicide “definitely would be in far greater numbers than the numbers that we’re talking about” for COVID-19 deaths. That is totally insane, but let’s not get confused by the sad statistics on suicides in America. According to the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in America. We had 48,344 people die by suicide in 2018 and they believe there were 1.4 million attempts. In a world where Donald John Trump is so loose with the facts, why would he give anyone the suggestion of suicide as a cure for being confined at home? It’s downright dangerous, but the man never filters his words.
  5. We have heard the distortion by our President that, “99% of COVID-19 cases are totally harmless.” Excuse my French, but “C’est l’idée la plus stupide que quiconque ait jamais dite.” Translation, Trump is fucking nonsensical beyond belief. The facts: 15% of COVID-19 cases become “very serious” and as many as 5% can lead to death. When someone uses the word, “harmless,” the logical conclusion is it’s benign to most people. The jury is still out regarding the long-term effects of COVID-19 and the true percentages. When the word, “harmless” is used, it connotatively suggests we can let our guard down. We cannot.
  6. The latest myth that has crept into the speech patterns of Trump and his clueless sycophants in Congress and around the country is that young kids are not as susceptible to getting COVID and do not spread it as much as adults do. Now I am going to make this personal. My daughter has always worked in daycare and she has been around two-year-old kids for years. In any given year, she and her five-year-old daughter will get as many as five colds and suffer through whatever the current yearly flu might be. To suggest that it’s okay to allow kids to be exposed to the virus and then go home is a form of government sanctioned murder of our teachers and other school workers. Here’s some true bad news for our schools. The Secretary of Education is Betsy DeVos, a rich donor with no experience or expertise in education or medicine; she is simply a useless public servant.
  7. There are no quick fixes like using disinfectants, untested drugs or sunshine to kill the virus. For months we were fed the drivel it will go away as soon as it gets warmer. That lie was based not on specific, scientific COVID data, but on the experiences we’ve had with normal influenza. The successful path would have been rigorous testing to determine who was infected then keeping healthy people away from them. We are doing a terrible job with contact tracing, which could help stop the spread of COVID. If you must go out in public, you should wear a mask. Dr. Debra Birx should be ashamed for not jumping out of her chair saying, “NO, NO, NO,” when Trump suggested ingesting or injecting bleach could cure the virus.
  8. You can trust what is coming out of the President’s mouth regarding the COVID crisis. It’s all defensive posturing, political hogwash and very little useful advice. Any intelligent person watching this governmental cluster-fuck can clearly see that Donald Trump’s approach has made our situation worse, not better. According to Forbes magazine, “64% of Americans distrust what Trump says about the Covid-19 pandemic—including 46% who say they don’t trust him ‘at all’—while only 34% trust what he says.”

I just read something brilliant from Marshall Shepherd, Director of the Atmospheric Science program at the University of Georgia. He has coined the term, “Wishcasting.” This is what we get daily from Donald Trump. Mr. Shepherd amplified his concept, “People ‘wishcast’ scenarios in our minds, but they don’t jibe with what the science or the data is actually bearing out.” When we hear about someone winning the lottery, our first thought is that it should have been us. We don’t feel good for the person who won a million dollars. We “wishcast” our thoughts and prayers every day, but that isn’t how we solve a problem. You could buy a lottery ticket every day of your life and never win a million dollars.

Hopefully, this list of myths will not grow, but I suspect it will. By the way, that is not a wish, just an educated guess. A friend of mine just wrote that in her school district in Georgia, three of her co-worker principals are on ventilators and one high school coach in his twenties has died, I wished it were better there. I know that opening schools is just more “wishcasting” by Trump, who would rather kill some people and win another election then do what is right for America. That isn’t a myth, it’s just who he is.  

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs: If you only read one chapter of this book, try “Take a Knee for America” and think about our never-ending conflicts between minorities and the police. I’m not asking you to take a stand but having a deep and honest conversation about why some people think the way they do would be productive. This is a book for the moment which seeks to start a conservation about peace. And if you are worried about social media, you really should check out the chapter called “Social Media Menace.”

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.


BOUNTY HUNTERS

Trump’s Treasonous Disregard

Aren’t you a little sick about being sick about sick people being so sick? I am not talking about the virus. I’m thoroughly pissed off with our government’s lack of respect for science, truth and reason. What America needs right now is a real leader, not another fake tweet, another bombastic rally performance or lots of orange makeup on the shirt collar of a fatso. Real leaders don’t wear makeup and the leader of the free world should protect his troops.

Application Error

The more we learn the more we realize that America is broken right now, and the guy in the White House is 87% of the problem. The other 13% is made up of the foolish people who have taken up with the false prophet. See it now, do you? Where the fuck have YOU been? Let’s get down to the nitty-gritty. (see Pew Research graphic)

Once again, Donald John Trump has put America, its citizens and our military in harm’s way. According to the New York Times, “Interrogations of militants and criminals in Afghanistan were the basis for the U.S. intelligence assessment that Russia offered money for successful attacks on coalition troops last year.”

The Associated Press reported that “suspicions about Russia deepened when members of the elite Naval Special Warfare Development Group, known to the public as SEAL Team 6, raided a Taliban outpost and recovered roughly $500,000 in early 2020.”

Why would Russia do this to Donald Trump? Well, because they could, and they will keep doing evil things, basking in the knowledge that our president will not push back. Here’s the most important question. If Trump knew, what did he do about it? If he didn’t know, was it because his intelligence team didn’t alert him or did he just ignore the data? The White House reaction to this news has been vague, defensive and murky. First, Trump said he didn’t know. Then, he said, his aides told him but there was some disagreement on the validity of the data. What will come tomorrow? Perhaps knowledge without action?

On January 22, 1917, President Woodrow Wilson addressed the Senate and used the phrase, “…peace without victory” while attempting to talk Congress out of World War I involvement in Europe. The idea that the United States was so powerful that President Wilson could just wish away the war is much like Donald Trump being naïve about the essence of Putin and Xi. They are fierce competitors who will do terrible things to us. Russia wasted tons of money on a ten-year war in Afghanistan, so they would like to see us fail there. Offering a bounty to the Taliban to kill Americans is exactly what Iran does with their proxies.

Donald Trump is a lot like Woodrow Wilson, only with a larger waist size and much lower IQ. Both have a kind of closet racism that they probably justify with some kind of fake anthropological analysis. That is why Princeton University is taking old Woodrow’s name off everything in sight.

Making America Great?

There is no such thing as “peace without victory.” If you don’t fight and win then you have no voice in post-war matters. Donald Trump constantly touts his deal making, especially when it comes to questions from the press about how he handles leaders around the world. According to CTV (Canada) “By far the greatest number of Trump’s telephone discussions with an individual head of state were with Erdogan, who sometimes phoned the White House at least twice a week and was put through directly to the President on standing orders from Trump.” Why does Trump spend so much time with Putin and Erdogan when our allies are feeling more and more like they don’t matter? The Donald has pushed away the nations once friendly to us and brought our adversaries closer. I wonder if he calls people who have relationships with Putin to find out what that Russian thug thinks of him? Could he be the Manchurian president?

It’s a damn serious problem if the President of the United States doesn’t read or can’t comprehend his daily intelligence briefings. The words “verified” and “corroborated” are used as a smoke screen to block Congress from the truth. The intelligence was delivered to Trump, and it’s amazing that he ordered statements from his people to make him look better in this damaging story.

According to the TheHill.com, “Top U.S. intelligence officials released statements Monday criticizing leaks to the media as the Trump administration continues to defend against allegations that it knew Russia had offered bounties to incentivize Taliban-linked militants to kill coalition troops in Afghanistan. CIA Director Gina Haspel and Director of National Intelligence John Ratcliffe released similar statements Monday night slamming leaks as detrimental to intelligence investigations.” This is like three suspects in the back of a police vehicle scheming to get their stories “straight.”

We love to know what is going on. It’s one of the great things about America, love us or leave us. Republican Oklahoma Senator Jim Inhofe was quoted in the Washington Post,  “We’ve known for a long time that Putin is a thug and a murderer, and if the allegations reported in the New York Times are true, I will work with President Trump on a strong response. My number one priority is the safety of our troops.” Sorry to be rude, Jim, but isn’t that what Trump should be saying? We hope that Democrats and Republicans will join to confront the president but given recent events perhaps we shouldn’t hold our breath.

Maybe I am being unfair to Trump, but a voice in my head keeps asking what is truly going on? It’s my father’s voice. He knows what it was like to fight in France and Germany during World War II. He’s asking why the President of the United States didn’t do everything he could, anything, to protect our troops. He wants to know why America seems to disbelieve the Commander in Chief. Trump needs to be held accountable, then he needs to get the hell out of the way. We can beat the virus, bring back the economy and restore America’s rightful leadership position in the world, but we cannot do those things with Trump.

READ ABOUT US GOVERNMENTS MOVES

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs: If you only read one chapter of this book, try “Take a Knee for America” and think about our never-ending conflicts between minorities and the police. I’m not asking you to take a stand but having a deep and honest conversation about why some people think the way they do would be productive. This is a book for the moment which seeks to start a conservation about peace. And if you are worried about social media, you really should check out the chapter called “Social Media Menace.”

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.

 


BOY, GLAD THAT’S OVER

Democratic Debacle in Detroit

The staging and hype were mostly embarrassing. Perhaps all the democratic candidates ought to get off the road, have a meeting and write a fucking platform, then restart this clown car with a unified message. The debates were a low moment for politics, the Democratic party and CNN, but let me share my true feelings.

Think back to your high school debates. You were given a position to defend and it didn’t matter if you agreed with the premise. I remember when I had to defend war during one of those exercises. But this was not a debate in the traditional sense. This was a political debate with many people and views. The forced opening and closing remarks were worthwhile, but what came in the middle was a shit sandwich.

CNN’s steering of questions to certain candidates and managing the on-screen minutes of each participant was horrible. I understand why a TV producer would want to produce drama. You cannot achieve drama without conflict. But the artificially injected arguments got in the way of what could have been a united Democratic front. The candidates deserve equal blame because they took the bait and plunged into dangerous waters. Pointing out weaknesses or hypocritical parts of the Obama administration might work for someone trying to gain points with the far-left progressives, but that action was mainly doing Trump’s job for him. This, more than anything else, demonstrated the damage that over-zealous political operatives can wreak.

The day after smell from the pundits was unified, pointing out that the attacks on Joe Biden resulted in destroying any sense of a cohesive message for voters. There are intense problems during this ridiculous effort to get noticed, and someone must lead the Democrats from self-destructive policies. That is supposedly the role of the party leader, Tom Perez, Chair of the Democratic National Committee. However, there’s little he can do to steer the candidates into line because of what was exposed in the Russian hack of the DNC and the releases on Wikileaks. No one at the DNC, or any party headquarters, must ever appear to be picking winners.

Many Democratic candidates believe that if they don’t win points now, they won’t be able to continue their quest to replace Trump. During the 2016 campaign, Bernie Sanders damaged Hillary Clinton more than Donald Trump did. Sanders positioned Clinton as being in bed with Wall Street, which turned off the far left and progressives. When Bernie wasn’t nominated, many of those voters pulled back from the system, or worse, voted for Jill Stein.

Some of the more sarcastic talking heads on TV were quick to point out that the debate presentation was pure reality TV show and suggested American’s love of that genre led to the election of a reality TV star to the presidency. It’s all wrong and counterproductive. It makes Democrats appear unorganized, splintered and illogical. With the internet going wild over Marianne Williamson’s presentation on night one of the debates, the spilled blood on night two became more important.

Williamson’s magnetic personality attracts people who can see through the shallow performances and phony vibrato of many on the debate stage. Williamson became an illusion, playing the part of Sybil the Soothsayer in the movie Network. If you remember, Sybil would predict the future on a TV news show. Marianne might not be able to predict her own political future, but her comments on anti-depressants and vaccines really makes her a person of the past, not the future. While some of the debaters articulated their plans, millions of Americans went to the fridge to get a beer. Those politicians are stupid if they think that anyone will remember what they said, let alone their names.

This brings me to a word that Trump has been using for about three years, collusion. Now there’s nothing wrong with a bunch of people from the same party getting together early to determine their overarching message and crafting language to share it with voters, but the network would probably find that boring. To beat a known “colluder” people must work together to accomplish the goal.

Democrats, please have a meeting NOW and compose a united platform. Figure out the best reform for the healthcare system and make sure each of you say it over and over again for the next 400 days. Take a stand on tax reform and clearly promote it. Finally, stop this diabolical use of the past. What are you going to do to make America great in the future after Trump? That is the most important question.

Impact of Trump on America

The book that tells it like it is…

Gold, God, Guns & Goofballs shows how we’ve wasted our GOLD on bad wars and corruption. While GOD is there for many people as a spiritual enrichment and the provider of glowing feelings, the truth is just praying and believing will not change our major arc. We don’t determine who gets a GUN. We aren’t sure if we have paramilitary groups ready to storm the White House or a White Castle. There is no control of weapons. The GOOFBALLS with the power constantly try to manipulate us into spending more money on bombs and tanks and wars. When all of our institutions are infected with neglect and fall in disrepair, we will only have ourselves to blame. This book is not an antidote for the left or right, it’s an accelerant to move the middle off their collective asses to go do something positive for America.

Get the Kindle Version HERE. Or order your paperback edition HERE.


STATES’ RIGHTS VS. DONALD TRUMP

Power Delegated is Power Lost

Most administrations in this great land of the United States have juggled the temptation to take power away from the states with the more conservative viewpoint that states should decide what is right for their people. Attempting to keep both balls in the air has brought tons of law suits and taxed the Department of Justice with major decisions and minor peccadillos.

Donald Trump has fallen into the trap quite nicely. His red meat rhetoric that he throws to the hungry masses will actually reduce some of his ability to get things done. He obviously doesn’t understand that the enumerated powers of Congress listed in the Tenth Amendment are not his powers, they are Congressional muscle.

And if you actually read that amendment, you will see that it is very clear: The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people.

Focus on that last phrase, Powers that are reserved to the people. When Donald Trump wants to fix healthcare by giving the states more power to determine how it works and what can or cannot be done, he diminishes the power of the President and the federal programs he promised to improve to help people.

In the latest aberration of the Healthcare re-write, the compromisers have slipped a little stick of dynamite into the paragraphs. They are proposing to give a state the right to charge more for those who have pre-existing conditions. Wow, really? If a guy walks in with cancer, you can tax him just like a pharmaceutical company. Who the hell are these people?

With 4-20-2017 now just purple haze in the rearview mirror, we find another conflict looming on the horizon: the right of a state to regulate the growing and sales of marijuana. In Colorado, marijuana tax revenue hit $200 million and sales are set to pass $1 billion this year. What was once a judicial, social and medical over-reach has been turned into a windfall for the mountain state. Even college scholarship programs are being funded out of these taxes and revenues.

When our government was taken over by goodie-two-shoes in the 1920s, the religious right created a constitutional ban on the production, importation, transportation, and sale of alcoholic beverages that remained in place from 1920 to 1933. The ban didn’t stop people from making, buying or drinking alcohol.  It just made America a dull place for 13 years. Finally, FDR decided that people should have a legal way to let off some steam.

Now some out-of-touch people in power want to take federal legal action against those states that have taken medical and recreational marijuana reform to the bank. The new Attorney General knows best about what marijuana is because he most likely has never smoked marijuana. Donald Trump has said he has never smoked pot or cigarettes and of course, he would be best to judge what smoking cannabis does. Full on irony here, folks.

When you say you want to give more power to the states, but you are selective in how you apply that philosophy, you create confusion. Just like when you ignore scientists’ evaluations on climate change, you seem out of touch. When you disregard the medical evidence that marijuana can help people, you are like those people back 100 years ago who thought they could defeat alcoholism by controlling everyone. The myths created about marijuana are slowly going up in smoke.

Some polls put the support for national legalization at 61%. That is clearly more people than who voted for Trump. Even Canada has taken the move to legalize the herb. What are we waiting for?

Attorney General Jeff Sessions said on a radio interview, “I am really am amazed that a judge sitting on an island in the Pacific can issue an order that stops the President of the United States from what appears to be clearly his statutory and constitutional power.”

Back at you Jeff, I really am amazed that a non-elected cabinet member from a state that doesn’t even have a lottery gets to decide how a state handles its medical and recreational use of certain natural plants.

What we really need is for all those who have a vote on marijuana at the federal level to fire up a doobie and relax. It’s not ‘oxy’ or heroin. Keep your eye on the important stuff.