Reminiscent of Soviet Russia, the regime is installing political operatives at the CDC.

https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2020/09/hhs-officials-altered-cdc-covid-19-reports-to-help-trump.html

Michael Caputo has been ranting and raving like a lunatic about scientists banding together to hurt Trump.

So the evident answer is to alter and delay the reports from the CDC so has to make Trump happy, but, once again, effectively lying to the public about the pandemic.

““I don’t like being alone in Washington,” he said, describing “shadows on the ceiling in my apartment, there alone, shadows are so long.” He then ran through a series of conspiracy theories, culminating in a prediction that Mr. Trump will win re-election but his Democratic opponent, Joseph R. Biden Jr., will refuse to concede.

“And when Donald Trump refuses to stand down at the inauguration, the shooting will begin,” he said. “The drills that you’ve seen are nothing.” He added: “If you carry guns, buy ammunition, ladies and gentlemen, because it’s going to be hard to get.”

So now we have administration officials creating scenarios for violence.

This is just friggin’ nuts. Trump is trying so hard to tear us apart, screw up the election, undermine American values and lie his way into office again. Putin has to be so proud that our own president is doing as much or more to poison our country. As planned I would suppose.

And the GOP? With notable exceptions, just a bunch of cowardly “yes folks”.

“Sleepy Joe”? Much better than “Traitor Trump”.

IMHO

85 thoughts on “Reminiscent of Soviet Russia, the regime is installing political operatives at the CDC.

  1. And let’s get more deniers, not skeptics, but full on deniers at NOAA so someone will say that hurricanes are going places they aren’t and really cause a Panic. And because he is a scientist, he has the cred to say it … sharpie or not.

    https://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/516160-delaware-professor-who-has-questioned-climate-science-hired-at-noaa

    …:pushed a discredited theory that the sun is responsible for climate change and disputed findings by the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change that found that human activity is responsible for global warming. ”

    And THIS explains the “why him” question distinclty and clearly:

    …”also writes for the Heartland Institute, a right-wing think tank that is known to promote climate change denial.”

    I am OK with differing views BASED IN FACTS. But flat out denial and fossil fuel financed researchers? Not so much.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. When Al Gore first got into politics, there were fewer than 6000 polar bears in the world, today, only 35,000 remain.

      Legates is a far more qualified climate scientist than those quoted in your cite criticizing him.

      WUWT: Legate

      Legate is correct that CO2 is not the Primary driver of climate change. Consider that the rate of temperature change from 1800 to 1940, prior to CO2 levels rising enough to matter, is the same as the rate of change since 1950. (temperatures fell between 1940 and 1950, think about what happened in that time period). So, what is different now from prior to 1940? What caused that rise in temperature before CO2 could have been a factor?

      If you can’t answer that, you should not be criticizing Legate.

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    2. Strange you claim “officials” creating scenarios for violence while your Democratic idols are actively participating in it. Law and order Trump over race baiting Biden any day.

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      1. You do realize that the ads showing “Biden’s America” is in reality the America Trump has given us. That and using Russian jets in ads purporting his undying love and support of “losers” and “suckers” in the military.

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  2. For years now, I have compared Trumpism to Stalinism. The common attributes are striking. The cult of personality. The fake patriotism. The intolerance of opposition. The stunning disregard of the simple truth. The self-serving corruption and cronyism. The attacks on countervailing institutions and the free press. The scapegoating of minorities.

    This ongoing Trump effort to politicize and/or denigrate science is further evidence that the comparison is an apt one. One is reminded of Stalin’s deleterious influence on Soviet biology where you risked your career and even your life if you failed to support the pseudo-science of Trofim Lysenko.

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      1. Nice try but there really is no comparison. People under Stalin and under Trump risked their careers by standing up for the consensus of science. People involved in climate science may risk their careers with work that their colleagues find unpersuasive. That has always been true in every area of science and is very different than authoritarian dictates.

        You have obviously overstated what the “bureaucrats” (aren’t they scientists too?) are doing with respect to IPCC output. SOME scientists whose views fall outside of the consensus may get short shrift in the documents but their output reflects the thinking of most. And there is no equivalent at IPCC of a Trump or a Stalin using their authority to overrule actual science.

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        1. You misunderstand how the IPCC Assessments are adopted.

          There are three working groups, assigned to Basic Science, Projections and Mitigation. They are made up of scientists, but they are apportioned by country, not merit.

          They prepare a First Order Draft of their respective sections. Then the heads of the working groups prepare an executive summary as part of the First Order Draft.

          Then the report are rewritten TO CONFORM TO POLICY, by a committee of the whole, one bureaucrat from each of the 135 member countries. SOME are scientists, many are not. The guy from whom I get my copy of the First Order Draft(which is not for publication) bought Sri LAnka’s seat so he could be in on the negotiations.

          Despotic African and Middle Eastern nations have the same input and vote on the final product as Britain and the United States.

          That kind of explains why the IPCC’s reports always stress the need to send trillions of dollars from advanced countries to those despots as mitigation.

          It is not a scientific document, it is a negotiated political document.

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          1. Thanks for the summary. The IPCC reports may indeed stress the need for help for undeveloped countries and such a POLITICAL – not scientific – leaning may indeed be driven by the process. But, there is nothing in the IPCC product that contradicts known scientific facts in the way that Lysenko’s pseudo-science did. And it does not have the weight of a dictator behind it. In spite of the flawed process you describe, I have seen absolutely nothing to suggest that the overall science presented is not very widely supported by professionals in the field.

            As I said in the beginning – Nice Try. But here on planet earth Trump is trying to shape, hide or block actual science. That is something that would have your hair on fire if Obama were doing it. Doncha think?

            Liked by 3 people

          2. On what issue?

            Trump’s actual position on Climate Change is not unreasonable. He doesn’t deny that there is change, or that people have some part in it.

            He doesn’t say climate change is a hoax, he says the proposed remedies are.

            But he doesn’t think there is any point in the US destroying its economy if the Chinese and the rest of the developing world are going to keep on as they are.

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          3. “… Then the reports are rewritten TO CONFORM TO POLICY…”

            And that is exactly what the Trump loyalists are trying to do with the CDC reports.

            Liked by 1 person

          4. On what issue?

            Climate, epidemiology, medicine – to name a few.

            What Trump has said about climate science is on the record and on tape. “Chinese hoax” comes to mind and that does not refer to OUR policies – it refers to the science. You are projecting what you wish he has said. Since Trump’s ramblings are incoherent and random they are like a Rorschach Test where anyone can choose what they want to hear.

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          5. No doubt President Trump speaks carelessly, an annoying flaw, but that does not make Legate’s appointment improper. He is very qualified in his field and though his views are distorted in the article, he provides needed balance to NOAA and NASA bureaucrats who seem more members of a cult than scientists.

            I would say that any time you hear the word “denier” attached to a scientist, you should disregard anything else the speaker says.

            Outside of clergy, there are no climate change deniers. It is not a binary issue, and anyone who puts it in those terms is demagoging, not debating.

            There is no doubt that climate is changing, or that human activity has some effect. Trump, Legate, Curry and I have all said so. Most of the skeptic community is on record on those central beliefs.

            What is in doubt is what portion of current warming is due to CO2 and what portion is natural and out of our control.

            That is very important, because the IPCC position is that ALL of the warming is CO2 driven, and the CMIP-5 models on which the IPCC bases its projections use that assumption. Because of the way the models work, basing each calculation on the one before, even a small error in that assumption is magnified going forward like compound interest.

            So, skeptics assert that the effect CO2 has on climate and the future effects are greatly exaggerated.

            In other than scientific issues, we don’t know how much adaptation rather than intervention would cost, and that makes a big difference. The measures required to actually intervene, assuming the IPCC projections are right, would result in permanent, grinding poverty for the majority of the human population, and hundreds of millions of associated deaths.

            That is the problem with binary thinking. Climate change is not all or nothing, it is a matter of balancing the costs of one choice against the costs of another.

            It’s complicated and requires a balancing of many views and priorities.

            But that can’t be done if anyone who varies from the official dogma is dismissed as a ‘denier,’

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          6. …”President Trump speaks carelessly, an annoying flaw, “…

            Wow. Documented lies and mistruths in the range of 20,000 and you refer to it as “an annoying flaw”. Amazed, am I.

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          7. You seem to be under the misapprehension that I think President Trump is great. He is no Ronald Reagan. He’s not even a George Bush.

            But the alternatives in both the last election and this one are so bad that Trump looks pretty good. Electing a Democrat in 2016 or 2020 would have rendered our Constitution meaningless, and that is something we cannot recover from.

            That said, Trump is also a lot better President than any of our last three Democrats. He has been relentlessly slandered by the news media and his own carelessness in speaking like he is with friends instead of among enemies, but he has actually done a lot well.

            He may indeed get a Nobel Peace Prize, for actually doing something instead of for just showing up.

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          8. Not at all. he is flawed personally, but policy has been pretty good. The alternatives have been catastrophes-in-waiting.

            Once the Constitution has been butchered, reassembling it is near impossible. Hitting the ‘Reset’ button is messy.

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          9. I appreciate the effort you have put into outlining your concerns about IPCC and how much you are dismayed by outlying opinions being given short shrift. I will not argue with you about any of what you have laid out in that regard and I was not seeking to debate climate change yet again. You follow the inner workings of the IPCC far more than I do or care to do.

            But none of what you have written about that has anything to do with the topic and that is Trump’s politicizing, denying, obscuring, marginalizing, twisting or ignoring science in the governing of this country.

            Nor can anyone pretend that his repeated statements are “inoperative” by saying that he speaks “loosely.” The President is not supposed to speak “loosely.” His words are too important for that. You, for example, hung on every word or every slight misstatement by our previous President and attached great weight to every syllable. Now you don’t. Day after day of utter and dangerous Presidential nonsense is just “annoying?”

            You waste your credibility by continuing to soft peddle the obvious truth. Trump has been an unmitigated disaster in almost every possible way.

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          10. @Tabor
            Your paean to Donald Trump is simply astonishing. And you say you do so because he is protecting the Constitution but Democrats have not? With all due respect, you have a very screwy notion of what the Constitution is about if you think Trump is protecting it.

            Wake up and smell the smoke. That is Donald Trump burning up the Constitution in countless ways. He thinks he is a king and is above the law. His sincerity in that belief is matched only by his stupidity. His disrespect for the other branches of the government is both palpable and dangerous. Checks and balances are for “suckers” and “losers” in his view of the Constitution. Just this week he blocked Congress from holding hearings on the rampant corruption sprouting like mushrooms around the pandemic response.

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          11. Even were those charges true, which they are not, the problems can be resolved by the Courts.

            But once the Courts become the problem, that can only be remedied by the people.

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          12. …”the problems can be resolved by the Courts.”

            Most times he ends up in the courts he loses. So now the courts are the problem? Blame shifting is the ultimate Trumpian move.

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          13. No, you have it backwards.

            SO long as the courts stick to the law as written, including the Constitution, then abuses by a President can be rectified.

            But if the Courts are filled with outcome oriented ideologues, then Presidential abuses can be rubber stamped, as happened a great deal in the 1930s.

            Trump has appointed very good judges who respect the law, it’s one of the things I like best about him.

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          14. And he STILL loses more than he wins.

            If you want a king, you can move to England (OK, Queen, for now). If you wnt an autocratic despot, Turkey will take you in.

            The destruction of Constitutional norms and laws by this administration is killing our democratic republic. And YOU cheer it on.

            Liked by 1 person

          15. LOL!

            What do you find to be untrue in what I wrote?

            Trump refuses to subject himself to Congressional oversight. He openly and proudly defies any law that he does not like. He openly disparages any Court that does not rule in his favor. He daily attacks a bedrock of our system of government – the free press. He has usurped the Constitutionally mandated power of the purse from Congress with his phony emergency diversion of funds to pet projects. He has the DOJ acting as his personal advocate and attorney in his countless sleazy sex scandals. He is out to destroy the Post Office which is one of the few government agencies established in the Constitution. He is doing his best to de-legitimize the coming election because – I suppose – he expects to lose. I could go on and on and so could you.

            You say you like his policies? What are they? Destroying the Grand Alliance which has been a keystone of our security for generations? Kowtowing to dictators while disrespecting and alienating allies. Massive deficit spending to pay for tax cuts for billionaires? You like that? You like spending mountains of borrowed money to increase a bloated military? You like packing the courts with evangelical fanatics to insure the government can regulate the most personal parts of our lives? Really? In the past you abhorred deficit spending, wasteful military extravagance and government interference in personal behavior. What has changed?

            And then, of course, there is the gross mismanagement of the greatest threat we have faced in generations. You like mismanagement? You like seeing our country badly wounded and yet another unholy mess for the next Democratic President and his government to deal with? Yes, probably you do.

            By the way, I understand that you applaud the dismantlement of environmental regulations. But really, was the damage that they may have done even in the worse case scenario more than a tiny fraction of the overall Trump disaster?

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          16. President Trump has indeed followed the example of former President Obama in overstepping the role of the Executive Branch, but that can be remedied by the courts. I see no evidence of judges who do not place the Constitution ahead of their personal beliefs and certainly not partisan in any way.

            Internationally, our ‘allies’ have gotten away with treating the US as a patsy and ATM, and I am happy to see that end.

            And though I would have liked to see the President set a better example on mask wearing, I don’t find any major errors in his handling of COVID based on what was known at the time the choices were taken. See the Steve Hilton video cited earlier.

            The Federal Government has grown too large and powerful, and the bureaucracy has grown fat and authoritarian. It was time for someone to kick over the tables, and that is messy, but needed change often is.

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          17. “I don’t find any major errors in his handling of COVID based on what was known at the time the choices were taken. ”

            So you have been saying. But it is now very clear from the Woodward tapes that Trump had complete information about the deadly nature of the threat very early in the process and still lied to the American people and punted all responsibility.

            We are now approaching 200,000 dead – a huge proportion of whom would still be alive if the Trump policy had been honesty and decisive action from the beginning. I hope you are only pretending – out of stubborn loyalty to Dear Leader – to not find “any major errors” because causing avoidable deaths and maiming illnesses in six figures seems like a major error to me.

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          18. As one who is likely to die if infected, I have a very big stake in how the pandemic is managed.

            But other than the mask example, I see no decisions that resulted in higher mortality that were not supported by what was known at the time.

            It’s easy to be a clever quarterback on Monday morning, but decisions have to be made based on the best advice available AT THE TIME.

            So, what, specifically, could have been done differently with the information available at the time that would have made significant difference?

            Keep in mind that causing panic could have added another 100K or so to the total by spreading the disease form the cities to the heartland sooner.

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          19. This defense of Trump’s massive failure is not persuasive. Another case of don’t believe your lyin’ eyes, believe Trump.

            Other countries – many a lot like ours – had the same information that Trump had. They had the same science for testing. The same technology to gather and coordinate information. Their results in the face of this “this killer . . . this plague” are much better than ours because their leaders followed the science and not concerns about getting re-elected or “looking bad.”

            What did they do, that we didn’t? Their national leaders took social distancing, wearing of masks, testing and contact tracing very seriously. They spent the money and endured the pain to make these things happen. They did not mislead their people about the dangers. They were not guided by thinking that said ““When you test, you create cases.” and ” [testing] makes me look bad.” They did not encourage dangerous behavior (as Trump does to this day) nor applaud yahoos who defy legitimate public health regulations. With guns.

            We are supposedly the “greatest nation on earth” but in this crisis – under Trump’s corrupt and incompetent leadership – we have failed miserably. If we had been merely average in the effectiveness of our response there would be at least 100,000 fewer dead that we have had so far.

            This talk of “avoiding panic” is a red herring. The way to avoid panic is clear, honest leadership.

            It appears that modern “conservatives” can never be expected to handle something like this pandemic effectively because they do not accept the basic moral precept that “we are all in this together.”

            And by the way, the magnitude of the mess Trump has created is not yet fully visible. Huge debts that cannot be paid. Millions of jobs that are never coming back. Unpaid rents and failed mortgages that will blast a gaping hole in the financial system. Healthcare system with a broken back. And a federal government staggering under fiscal mismanagement of staggering proportions. “Conservatives” complained bitterly about Obama’s use of deficits to right the wrecked economy but now not a peep while Trump pisses away trillions and will not even cooperate with Congress as it tries to exercise some oversight.

            Liked by 1 person

          20. What other countries?

            S Korea and Japan, for example, have a long tradition of wearing makes in flu season and that served them well, but it was not a reaction to this threat.

            And, of course China, but they can put tanks on the highways and literally lock up a city. Our President doesn’t have that power.

            So again, what specifically could Trump have done, within his powers as President, with what was known at the time, that would have made a significant difference?

            Sure, with the benefit of hindsight, we could have shut down travel from Europe at the same time as China.

            We could have reduced the use if ventilators sooner.

            But at the time…

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          21. What other countries?

            As of yesterday there was no other first world country that is worse than us in the most meaningful measure – per capita deaths. And many have done far better. We are FAR worse than average and that translates into avoidable deaths in six figures and counting.

            I have already given a clear answer to your question about what should have been done differently. Too bad you don’t like it for the reason that it involves facing the truth.

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          22. If there was a specific policy in that mess, I can’t find it. What specific policy, within the President’s powers, could have been enacted, and when, and what was known at the time?

            Per capita deaths is a pretty much useless comparison. The death rate for COVID is much higher for those over 70 and for Blacks, for reasons that are beyond our control. Per capita rates of different countries can only be useful if you factor in the share of the population over 70 and the racial diversity of the country.

            Case fatality rate is a better measure of our health care response and per capita cases of epidemiologic success.

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          23. Again? What specific policy was wrong? I have answered twice already. The old adage is correct . . . “There are none so blind as those who will not see.”

            But, I will play along.
            Bad policies . . .
            The policy of misleading the public about the seriousness of the danger.
            The policy of putting a higher priority on the stock market than on national security.
            The policy of NOT encouraging strenuous social distancing.
            The policy of NOT doing serious testing and contact tracing.
            The policy of punting on a NATIONAL crisis to local jurisdictions (to avoid blame, not for scientific reasons).
            The policy of not leading by example and mocking the wearing of masks.
            The policy of encouraging resistance to the efforts of those jurisdictions.
            The policy of lying about “turning the corner” when there is no end in site.
            The policy of meddling with the science on data, treatments and the prospects of a vaccine.

            None of these policy blunders have anything to do with what was known or not known at the time. They are the blunders of a self-centered ignoramus whose only concern is avoiding responsibility and continuing the scam without repercussions.

            With all due respect, your invoking the case death rate is irrelevant and Trump has nothing to do with it whatsoever. As you say, it is a measure of the effectiveness of our health care providers not of the government’s epidemiological leadership.

            The proportion of the people who end up dead is the clear and relevant measure of government effectiveness. Your attempt to spin this away this massive failure with demographic arguments is a dog that will not hunt. Many of those European countries who have fared far better that we do have older populations than we do. Japan’s is much older.

            And as for Blacks, the statistics on their morbidity IN THIS COUNTRY seem to have more to do with their relative lack of access to healthcare than with any inherent biological susceptibility. Again, THAT too is a failure of the Trump government as it has been tearing down the ACA.

            https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/health-equity/race-ethnicity.html

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          24. I assume you got your medical degree from Facebook. The CDC site is politically correct bullshit.

            Blacks are inherently more susceptible to diabetes, high blood pressure and kidney failure, these are genetic differences that have been recognized by health care professionals for more than 50 years. They are also more susceptible to autoimmune diseases. All are major risk factors for severe cases of COVID.

            Which European countries have older populations than us? Japan, BTW, is not in Europe and is peopled by Japanese. Again, by genetic difference, they live longer than pretty much anyone else(though they do have a higher incidence of liver cancer. )

            So, no, deaths per capita is not useful for anything. Cases per capita is the proper measure for epidimeology

            Under our Constitution, the President does not have the power to close down businesses or mandate social distancing, The Federal government can provide guidelines for the States. but the governors have the authority.

            Even if he did have the power, it would be foolish to think that the same measures appropriate for New Jersey should apply to Montana.

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          25. Which countries in Europe have a more aged population than we do?

            This is a typical “question” from you. I make a very valid evidence-based refutation of one of the key planks of your defense of Trump’s failures – that we have a disproportionate number of old people. We don’t. And you know that already. Europe’s aging demographic and low birth rates have been covered extensively for years. But still you want to pretend that I am blowing smoke.

            But again, I will play along. Here is the list of every country with a higher percentage of elderly than this country. The last figure in each entry is those over 65.

            Italy 13.5 % 63.5 % 23.0 %
            Germany13.1 % 65.5 % 21.5 %
            Portugal 13.6 % 64.9 % 21.5 %
            Finland 16.4 % 62.4 % 21.2 %
            Bulgaria 14.2 % 65.0 % 20.8 %
            Greece 14.2 % 65.4 % 20.4 %
            Sweden 17.5 % 62.5 % 19.9 %
            Latvia 15.4 % 64.8 % 19.8 %
            Croatia 14.7 % 65.6 % 19.7 %
            Denmark16.5 % 63.8 % 19.7 %
            France 18.1 % 62.2 % 19.7 %
            Estonia 16.4 % 64.2 % 19.5 %
            Malta 14.4 % 66.1 % 19.4 %
            Spain 14.7 % 65.9 % 19.4 %
            Austria 14.1 % 66.7 % 19.2 %
            Slovenia 15.0 % 66.0 % 19.1 %
            Czech 15.4 % 65.6 % 19.0 %
            Lithuania 14.8 % 66.2 % 19.0 %
            Netherlands 16.4 % 64.8 % 18.8 %
            Belgium 17.1 % 64.3 % 18.6 %
            Hungary 14.3 % 67.1 % 18.6 %
            United Kingdom 17.7 % 63.8 % 18.5 %
            Switzerland 14.9 % 66.7 % 18.4 %
            Romania 15.3 % 66.9 % 17.9 %
            Serbia 16.5 % 66.2 % 17.4 %
            Canada 16.0 % 67.0 % 17.0 %
            Norway 17.8 % 65.4 % 16.8 %
            Poland 14.8 % 68.4 % 16.8 %
            Bosnia and Herzegovina 14.1 % 69.3 % 16.6 %
            Ukraine 15.5 % 68.0 % 16.5 %
            Curaçao 18.7 % 64.9 % 16.4 %
            Hong Kong 11.5 % 72.2 % 16.3 %
            Australia 19.0 % 65.5 % 15.5 %
            United States 18.9 % 65.7 % 15.4 %

            Germany is near the top of the list. If we had achieved their much lower deaths per capita we would have 140,000 people alive today who were killed by Trump’s grotesque failure. Their rate of deaths per 100,000 people is 12. Ours is 82. Even Italy, which was hit hard and hit early and has the oldest population on the list has kept their deaths to 16 per 100,000 people.

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_age_structure

            The evidence is clear and unambiguous. We have failed horribly under Trump’ leadership.

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          26. Germany is not exactly racially diverse. But where does your math come from? If we had 82 deaths per 100K, we would have about 280K dead.

            The percent over 65 is not particularly useful. The absolute number over 80 or even 70 is more relevant. Percentage over 65 can be because of a lot of old people or it can be because the young people either left or weren’t born.

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          27. BTW, do you know when “Operation Warp Speed,” the program that will deliver a vaccine(or 3) in large quantities by the end of the year was started?

            Not in January or February, but a year ago this Friday.

            Months before Coronavirus was known to anybody, President Trump had set up the framework for rapid vaccine development and deployment to be ready for whatever flu or other pandemic threatened the country and the world.

            That’s why having a President with experience in the private sector is vital. Career politicians don”t prepare for such contingencies.

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          28. Operation warp speed must have been a global effort since there are about 135 or so companies round the world developing vaccines. Oxford is one of the first to start phase 3.

            What is interesting is that you seem to think that another president would not have gone the same route as the rest of the nations.

            Plus this modern research and development of this vaccine is based on new technologies that were only available in the last few years.

            So give Trump some credit because he is president, but you are fantasizing about a speculation that another would not have done the same.

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          29. Other Presidents could have and didn’t.

            And no, other countries are not involved. Operation Warp Speed is a set pf incentives and financing options, along with regulatory easements, the Trump administration developed in anticipation of something like the H1N1 pandemic of 2009.

            Past Presidents have approached vaccine development from a command positions. Trump and his appointees are businessmen and they found a way to make rapid development and production pay.

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          30. Operation Warp Speed

            I will give full credit where credit is due – this kind of GOVERNMENT-lead Manhattan or Apollo Project to speed the development of vitally important technology is a good idea. Freeing the private sector from the inherent risks, accelerating approval processes and providing funding all make sense under the exigent circumstances. As someone who looks forward to a return to “normal”, I hope for its success.

            With that said, your attempt to spin Operation Warp Speed as something that only a Trump would come up with or that this is proof of the vitality of for-profit business attitudes versus those stodgy government agencies is – to be polite – quite a stretch.

            And, if this effort pre-dates the advent of the pandemic by many months as you claim I could not find any evidence of that. It seems to be something that emerged from the “deep state” bureaucracy in the first quarter of the year. And to his credit, Trump backed it and the Congress funded it. These official histories from the Trump administration say nothing about anything happening before March 2020.

            https://www.hhs.gov/about/news/2020/06/16/fact-sheet-explaining-operation-warp-speed.html

            https://www.defense.gov/Explore/Spotlight/Coronavirus/Operation-Warp-Speed/Operation-Warp-Speed-Timeline/

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          31. Re: “It wasn’t called that but the framework was developed last year in preparation for future pandemics”

            So, Trump did NOT start Operation Warp Speed in September 2019. Was your original statement that he did some of that famous “speaking loosely” that you find so annoying when Trump does it 20,000 times and counting?

            You claimed that no earlier President without the advantage of that good old capitalist businessman experience planned for contingencies like the far-sighted Mr. Trump. Seems you have forgotten that President Obama set up a group within the National Security Council to do exactly that? And you have forgotten that Trump gutted it because, you know, it was an Obama initiative.

            It appears to me that the real story is that some staffer, maybe from the “deep state,” realized the error of ending preparations for possible pandemics and did some work on it. Good for them.

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          32. So, you claim Trump is responsible for every error made by the bureaucracy on his watch, but he gets no credit for any accomplishment? Pick a lane.

            The fact is that no other President did make these kinds of changes, because approach to government and regulation was totally command driven. Trump made fundamental changes to the relationship between the regulators and those they regulate. Early on, bureaucrats were told their job was not to block the private sector but to facilitate it wherever it could be done safely. You, and others, objected to those changes at the time.

            But that ‘attitude adjustment’ Trump gave the bureaucracy has led to many things being done differently. Now, vaccine developers are protected from risks of starting production prior to approval and that alone will save at least 6 months in making the vaccines generally available.

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          33. Actually, I did give Trump credit for the Operation Warp Speed effort.
            For example, “I will give full credit where credit is due . . .”
            and later in that same post . . . “And to his credit, Trump backed it and the Congress funded it”
            He SHOULD get credit or blame for whatever is done by the government on his watch.

            My post was not about Trump but about your exaggerating his role in OWS. Which you did.

            Whatever action was taken by his administration in pandemic preparedness in 2019 was catchup to where we were before Trump started slashing anything and everything Obama.

            As for your litany of the wonderful changes in the government approach to regulation, it amounts a fanciful description of letting the foxes set the rules for the hen house. And, in any case, has very little to do with the origins of OWS. The model for OWS is not any different from other major government-led technology initiatives in the past.

            Liked by 1 person

          34. Which do you think stung BP more, and did more to increase its vigilance on safety issues after it Gulf oil spill. the fines it paid or the harm to its reputation and marketing?

            Some regulation is required for things that are difficult to hold accountable, but businesses are very sensitive to public opinion in the information age.

            Much regulation exists at the behest of the industries regulated as a tool for suppressing competition from new entries into the field.

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          35. I absolutely agree that government regulations frequently become a tool to protect entrenched interests and suppress competition. It is a real issue. And that is precisely why the regulatory regime should not be turned over to the people who benefit from that perversion of its purpose. The problem is that special interests have too much influence in the process, not too little. This seems obvious to me and a logical consequence of the fact of corrupt purpose that you are pointing out.

            Liked by 2 people

          36. If you don’t give government power to meddle in the marketplace, it can’t abuse it.

            The answer isn’t to decide who has the power to meddle in the marketplace, it is to keep command decisions out of the marketplace as much as possible.

            You can bribe an official who has no power to help you.

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          37. There is no reason to dispute the view that it is desirable “to keep command decisions out of the marketplace as much as possible.” However, exactly what that means is the heart of the matter. How much damage must people suffer before it is no longer possible to keep the government out of the equation? You would say quite a lot because eventually the word would get out and the perpetrators would be set straight by the market. Well, that was tried and failed and that is why we have regulatory agencies in the first place.

            Liked by 1 person

          38. It is no longer 1930.

            We have access to information that no prior generation has had. Regulations based on asymmetry of information no longer make sense except for some very complex issues.

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          39. No, it is not 1930. It is worse.

            There is as much disinformation floating around as there is information. And people are bombarded with it. The once great hope that the internet would usher in a new age of information availability and rational, evidence-based decision-making has been completely dashed.

            Liked by 1 person

          40. “Those of us who have looked to the self-interest of lending institutions to protect shareholders’ equity, myself included, are in a state of shocked disbelief,” he told the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.“

            Alan Greenspan at hearings after the 2008 crash.

            Now he was referring to the mortgage lending debacle, but it means he could have stopped it despite any Fannie/Freddie abuses.

            A deregulated economy is a unicorn. We know what companies will do absent regulatory constraints. And it is not pretty.

            Look at China. Or any Third World nation and think about whether you’d rather open a business there with few, if any regulations, but plenty of problems.

            Liked by 2 people

          41. Whoops, my bad. I reported cases per capita not deaths. The chart on the link has two tabs. The actual figures are . . .

            USA ——–> About 1.9
            Germany –> Less than 0.1
            Italy ———> About 0.1

            The point is the same. We have done horribly versus other countries. In the last seven days we have had 6,146 deaths. Germany has had 30. Italy has had 70.

            As far as your racial excuse for Trump’s failure goes, it starts to break down when you see that not a single African country has a worse per capita performance. South Africa, for example has a rate about half of ours. If you doubt the accuracy of reporting from Africa, France and the UK both have a significant non-white populations and their rates are far, far better than ours as well. Finally, our neighbor to the north has a variety of ethnicities and their rate is also about TWENTY times better than ours.

            As far as your quibbling about the population over 65 vs that over 70 or 80, it only shows how desperate you are to not face the glaring truth. Maybe you feel guilty for supporting a callous mass murderer and that explains your inability to see the obvious?

            Liked by 1 person

          42. Blacks are 13% of the Us population but 23% of Covid deaths.

            Interestingly, Blacks in Africa still have a higher fatality the whites here but not nearly so high as US Blacks.

            They certainly don’t have greater health care access. But they don’t have the obesity or drug and alcohol problems(a lot are Muslims) that we have here.

            But even so, there is a genetic bias toward diabetes, HBP, and inflammatory diseases.

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          43. Your link points to the last page of a 7 page article. Here is a link to the first page.

            https://www.webmd.com/hypertension-high-blood-pressure/features/why-7-deadly-diseases-strike-blacks-most#1

            The article struggles valiantly to make it a political issue, but even so admits the genetic component. For example. it points to later detection of lung cancer, but grudgingly admits that Blacks get lung cancer twice as often as whites to begin with, in spite of less tobacco use.

            It’s not all about access to health care. Consider that Blacks in Africa are healthier by far than Blacks in the US, and they certainly don’t have better health care. Clearly lifestyle, on top of the equal genetic predispositions, has a larger impact than health care access.

            Over my career, I treated many thousands of Black patients, and I can tell you with certainty that they are more susceptible to diseases of inflammation, with all other factors being equal.

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          44. I don’t disagree.

            The problem is an American one obviously. And if we have a diverse population with a variety of genetic predispositions as well as lifestyle, cultural and biases, shouldn’t we address reality rather than wishful thinking.

            As an example, there is still a longstanding mistrust of medical treatment among some inner city and rural poor minorities. Rumors and conspiracies based on historical issues are hard to change and are passed on from generation to generation.

            The point is do we address health issues for all Americans or not.

            Liked by 1 person

          45. Of course we do the best we can for everyone, but part of that is acknowledging and adjusting treatment based on genetic predispositions.

            The problem is that as soon as you do that, someone accuses you of racism.

            Aside from which, if it’s genetic, it can’t be blamed on Trump so we must ignore it.

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          46. In the United States the death rate among African-Americans from the Covid-19 virus is roughly twice that of Caucasians. That sad fact is due to a mix of genetic factors and socio-economic issues. Right?

            BUT, whatever, the percentage of African-Americans to our entire population is only 13% so that sad fact of their higher mortality from the virus does not begin to explain the massive failure of this country to control the virus compared to almost all other major countries. Invoking that factor is a dodge to avoid simply accepting the massive evidence and admitting that Trump has failed miserably in this most important test of his Presidency. White people in the USA are dying at rates a large multiple of White people in other countries with better leaders.

            Liked by 1 person

          47. Again, comparing the US to other countries is problematic.

            Aside from racial diversity and age distribution, we are a very mobile society. Most Europeans don’t even own a car.

            I used to have a deer hunting lease near McAllen Tx. The rancher told me, at about 2 PM, that he was taking his wife out to dinner at the “Duck Blind” I was familiar with the famous Duck Blind restaurant in Lake Charles, La, and I was happy to learn they had a branch in McAllen, or nearby Corpus Christi, but nope, he meant the on on Lake Charles.

            People in Texas, and the West in general, don’t think of distance in the same way people in Germany, or New Jersey, do. They don’t travel 1000 miles to compare motorcycles like in Sturgis.

            Such comparisons are more about who we are than any Trump policy.

            Like

          48. My wife’s grandparents lived in Roswell, NM and were horse and sheep ranchers. Nearest neighbors were a long ways from their 27 square mile ranch. Avid bridge players, they thought nothing of driving 100 miles for an evening of cards. Of course, the speed limit was kind of flexible and 100 mph was no big deal on straight desert roads with only occasional arroyos, or dips for flash floods, and some wandering fauna.

            That kind of mobility is rarer in the East because of both traffic and roads.

            Now it may be that Europeans don’t travel as far, but they rely much more on crowded public transportation like high speed trains, buses and cabs. So I would think the contagion would travel much faster in Europe. Not to mention that there are not just like our states, but rather nations with their own politics, laws and customs.

            Liked by 1 person

          49. Good grief, you continue to grasp at straws rather than admit the obvious – in Right Stuff language – Trump screwed the pooch. Bigly!

            The main argument in your latest post is that Americans are different because we are more mobile and because we have cars and, by contrast, Europeans don’t. And that, somehow, explains why our death rate is 15x-20x that of major European countries.

            With all due respect, that is a nonsense argument. European populations being more dense and people more reliant on public transportation works in favor of the virus. An American sitting in a car on his commute will not be exposed. A Germany riding street car or bus is surrounded by people ands might be.

            How different are we from Canadians. As of today we have lost 1.8 people per 100,000. Canada has lost 0.1. Before you trot out the race argument again, Canada is a racially diverse country that is 73% Caucasian versus our 72%.

            The whole Trump line is palpable nonsense. Obama’s dealing with three different viral threats without major issues was a failure. Trump’s policies causing “only” hundreds of thousands to sicken and die is a success. Maybe you should stop and think why this story is not selling before repeating it ad nauseum.

            Liked by 2 people

          50. I was doing the math from the latest up-to-date figures reported here . . .

            Without intending to, I used the reported data for the most recent seven days where our rate is 15x – 20x that of Germany, Canada, Italy or France. While we still have deaths in thousands per week, they have tens.

            The cumulative figures they show are 60 deaths per 100,000 for us, 11 for Germany and 25 for Canada. I apologize for my confusion, but the bottom line is the same. We have done a terrible job. If we had matched Canada’s success there would be 115,000 fewer deaths. Or, it Trump’s government was a effective as Angela Merkel’s, there would be 160,000 fewer deaths. It is an old lesson taught to me at my mother’s knee – Honesty is the Best Policy.

            Liked by 2 people

  3. Strange you claim “officials” creating scenarios for violence while your Democratic idols are actively participating in it. Law and order Trump over race baiting Biden any day.

    Like

    1. “Trump Health Aide Falsely Alleges Conspiracies and Warns of Armed Revolt.”

      Yeah, I think that sort of sums up creating scenarios for violence.

      “Traitor Trump” is so much nicer than “Sleepy Joe” doncha tink? 😇 (That is code for “don’t you think”, which may be a query worthy of its own comment, but I digress.)

      PS: Please name some of the Democratic leadership that are “actively participating” in arson, looting and shooting. You must have some knowledge since you stated it.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Don’t you watch the news? Every Democrat run city is “protest” crisis is being actively or tacitly provoked by their Democrat government. That’s about as participating as it gets, “doncha tink”?

        Like

  4. I notice that neither of the sources you cite gives even one example of how Caputo and Alexander have caused a CDC report to be altered. All they report is he-said/she-said allegations. As a result, both stories are just blowing smoke.

    Show me what an MMRW said before and after a recommended change and maybe I’ll believe that Caputo and Alexander are up to no good. Maybe I’ll agree with their recommendation. But don’t expect me to believe stories that make claims they don’t prove.

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      1. RE: “This link was in the article and it gives greater detail on efforts to change reports.”

        I read the Politico story the first time it showed up by reference here in the Forum (your post, in fact). It also gives no example of how Caputo and Alexander have caused a CDC report to be altered. No before-and-after to prove the claim. Go ahead: Quote the Politico details you think exist.

        They don’t. You got nothing, just smoke and bile.

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        1. That is the common theme amongst all of these whistleblowers and inside unsourced revelations. Smoke and more smoke followed by a media babblefest of “reports”. All trash talk by the haters.

          Like

          1. Actually, the allegations of the most prominent “Whistleblower” who tried to stop Trump demanding favors in exchange for doing the duties of his office were proven in the House beyond a reasonable doubt. Sorry, but damning allegations backed by solid evidence is NOT “trash talk.”

            And, the most recent WIDESPREAD reporting from anonymous sources concerning Trump’s egregious disrespect for the “suckers” and “losers” who – unlike him – risked everything in service to our country was corroborated by none other than Fox News. Are they blowing smoke too?

            Liked by 1 person

  5. Well duh, YEAH, Mr. Caputo – your “mental health has definitely failed,”.

    Anyone noticed that ‘donald’ must like to hire people who are as unhinged as he is. I read those Caputo lines about. . . “I don’t like being alone in Washington,” and “shadows on the ceiling in my apartment, there alone, shadows are so long,” and that old Ray Milland scene from THE LOST WEEKEND” flashed in my mind. Geez, these people need to put the bottle down because I swear, the only thing missing from that guy is a description of a bat or mouse crawling up the wall in his darkened room. Ha.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Okay Doc, got something for ya.

    You strike me as the type who’d pan fry a fish or two. I have found the secret! Prep the fish, paper towel dry. A few drops of olive oil, and rub it in. Dijon mustard. Rub that on. Flip ’em into a hot pan.

    That mustard turns the surface to the most beautiful shade of golden brown.

    I use a dry Heinkle “granite” pan on high, turn the heat off after the 1st flip, and cook the rest of the way on residual heat.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. What I find semi-interesting is that Caputo is saying that only Democrats will “revolt” if Trump is re-elected. Yet it is the armed right wing lunatics that will take up arms against their fellow citizens if Trump loses, using his “rigged election” BS rhetoric to justify it.

    Oh, but that will be OK. Right?

    Liked by 1 person

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