Octoberish rambling: Road to 270

Many Tom Lehrer lyrics to the public domain. 

election_screen_time
election screen time per xkcd. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 License.

Road to 270 map

He’d Waited Decades to Argue His Innocence. She Was a Judge Who Believed in Second Chances. Nobody Knew She Suffered from Alzheimer’s.

Franklin Graham Goes Apoplectic Over Pope’s Push for Civil Unions for Gays.

Talk To Your Boss About Burnout Before It’s an Emergency.

Hidden cameras and secret trackers reveal where Amazon returns end up

TELL ME MORE WITH KELLY CORRIGAN: Bryan Stevenson

MyHeritage vs 23andMe vs AncestryDNA – Battle of the Titans 2000

The Town That Went Feral

Yeah,  thanks, Zoom

The Commercial that Killed a Fast Food Chain – Rax

Game show legend  Tom Kennedy, host of ‘Name That Tune,’ dies at 93

Five Nouns You Didn’t Realize Were Also Verbs

The 25 most spectacular branding fails of the last 25 years

Mistakes You’re Making When Reheating Leftovers  That Could Make You Sick

These Are America’s Favorite Halloween Candies By State And Starburst Tops The List

Now I Know: The Most Dangerous Pole Dance and Why Penguins Are a Laughing Matter and The Greatest Soccer Player Who Never Was and The Cheetos Challenge and Where the Cows Go and When Abraham Lincoln Lost New Jersey (and Won Anyway) and  Big Yellow Man Washed Ashore  on the Beach and  Where Men and Women Literally Don’t Speak the Same Language

Coronavirus

How to fight the COVID-19 ‘infodemic’

Dynamic Change of COVID-19 Seroprevalence among Asymptomatic Population in Tokyo

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: The  World Health Organization

Evidence Points to  Role of Blood Type in COVID-19

The US Is Missing a Chance to Tackle Climate Crisis and Pandemic Relief Together

Airport enlists Sniffer Dogs to Test for COVID-19

Analysis Shows Spike in Cases After Numerous Trump Rallies

Wear A Mask (Be Our Guest Parody)

IMPOTUS’ scorched earth policy

Executive Order Letting Him Purge Thousands of Federal Workers for Disloyalty

He demands Barr arrest foes and it hardly makes a ripple

Kavanaugh Parrots His Mail-In Ballot Lies as SCOTUS Bars Extension of Wisconsin Deadline

Lincoln Project Burns Fox News Phonies And Their ‘Trump TV’ National Memo

John Oliver on his immigration policies -‘Truly disciplined about being truly evil’

In the deluded mindset of Trumpworld’s denizens,  wearing a mask is: a) a sign of weakness, and b) a sign of, somehow, being a woman—which is itself seen, by them, as equivalent to weakness.

 He Confides His Feelings About ‘A Female President’  

Columbia University study shows that over 130,000 COVID-19 deaths could have been avoided with a more robust pandemic response

Got the Best COVID Treatment. For the Rest of Us He Wants “Herd Immunity.”

He’s their monster.  But suddenly Senate Republicans have never heard of him

A Radical Proposal  for Dealing with His Supporters After Biden Wins

The Administration’s Racial Bias — As a Black veteran, I can’t remain silent

The NYT’s shocking report on family separation

 

British Writer Pens The Best Description Of Trump I’ve Read

MUSIC

Eddie Van Halen, Hall of Famer Who Revolutionized the Guitar, Dead at 65

Coverville:  1329: The Eddie Van Halen Tribute and 1330: John Lennon Cover Story V 

Live From SpragueLand Episode 11: Peter Sprague Plays The Beatles 

Rhythm’s In the Melody  – Soulsha

Brahms – Sextet in G major  – Park | Yoo | Chang | Ullery | deMaine | Kim

i carry your heart by Eric Whitacre.

Pop Psalms: Once in a Lifetime  – Talking Heads

Italian folksong The Carnival of Venice, played by Wynton Marsalis and the Eastman Wind Ensemble

Sounds from St. Olaf – Episode 2:  Cubano Be, Cubano Bop  Jazz at St. Olaf

My Old Flame – Spike Jones, with Paul Frees imitating Peter Lorre

Tom Lehrer is officially releasing the lyrics to many of his songs into the public domain. 

Sean Ono Lennon talks with Elton John, Julian Lennon, and Paul McCarney about John Lennon. Part 1 and Part 2

October rambling: showering less

Covita

abridged-cinema-the-wizard-of-oz
From https://wronghands1.com/2020/09/22/abridged-cinema-the-wizard-of-oz/

Thomas, Alito Urge SCOTUS to ‘Fix’ Marriage Equality

Climate Change Activists Warn California’s First Gigafire Is the Sign of Things To Come 

Policy Lab’s resource page specifically for clinical research associated with bullying and Cyberbullying in the Age of COVID-19 

Why People Dropped Out of the Labor Force  

The Final Five Percent re: traumatic brain injuries

He Faced Down Entrepreneurship’s Hidden Demons –and Emerged a Better Leader

Two Ticks  (voting in New Zealand)

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver:  Election 2020   

Debt Collectors Are Thriving This Year   — and Now They’re Filing Even More Suits

Flights to Nowhere Are the Weirdest COVID Trend  

How the English language spread around the world  

Shaun Rootenberg: profile of a romance scammer 

Grandson of 10th U.S. president dies at 95 

‘Clean’ Author Makes The Case For Showering Less  

The economics of vending machines 

Inside Cameo, the celebrity shoutout app hungry for fame and Notes from a user

Grapefruit Is One of the Weirdest Fruits on the Planet  

Subway bread is not bread,  Irish court rules

Is Pandemic Brain Changing Your Taste in Music?  You’re Not Alone

Now I Know

The Other Watergate Tape and  Perpetual Stew and This Isn’t a German Fight Song and  Snow Reason to Think a Crime is Underway and The Extra Legs for the Last Leg  

Racial inequity

Documentary – Oscar Brown, Jr.: Music Is My Life, Politics My Mistress 

400 Years of Inequality

 Segregation in America   

Housing Segregation and Redlining in America: A Short History   | NPR

Exposing Housing Discrimination 

How deep-rooted systemic racism has such a profound impact on health  

Racial and Ethnic Disparities Continue in Pregnancy-Related Deaths  

Dr. Camara Jones Explains the Cliff of Good Health  

The story of   Henrietta Lacks: Her Impact and Our Outreach   

bigger_problem
From https://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/bigger_problem.png
Superspreader-in-Chief

Wayne Barrett’s ‘Without Compromise”, The Brave Journalism That First Exposed Him    

About Those Taxes  

Not the Man He Used to Be  

So many people who’ve lost loved ones to COVID-19 describe his message with the same four words and  He Is the ‘Single Largest Driver’ Of Covid-19 Misinformation 

An infected president, a disease of the heart, an imperiled republic 

 Infectious disease icon asks CDC director to expose White House, orchestrate his own firing 

Covita and  Regeneron 

If Donald Got Fired  – Randy Rainbow (featuring Patti LuPone!)

MUSIC

Balm in Gilead  – MUSE/IQUE (vocalists Ben Harper and Maiya Sykes, drummer Jimmy Paxson, bassist Michael Valerio, violinist Charles Yang, and keyboardist Deron Johnson, joined by Herman Cornejo, principal dancer with American Ballet Theater)

Billboard:  Eddie Van Halen’s 15 Best Songs and Thanks, Eddie  (RIP)

Stir It Up  – Johnny Nash (RIP).

We’re All Doomed – Trump vs. Biden, featuring “Weird Al” Yankovic

K-Chuck Radio: The real debate … Helen Reddy or Mac Davis?  (Both RIP)

Live From SpragueLand Episode 11 – Peter Sprague Plays The Beatles   

Bass Quintet in G major, op. 77    – Dvorak | Yoo | Park | Ullery | Kim | Cahill

Piece for Chamber Orchestra by Edward Bland

Sounds from St. Olaf – Episode 1: A St. Olaf Ensemble Showcase 

Colors   – Black Pumas

American Standard:  Teach Me Tonight   – James Taylor

Always Look on the Bright Side of Life   – Julien Neel

Mad World   – Pentatonix

Lift Ev’ry Voice and Sing   -San Diego Master Chorale. Arrangement and solo by Zanaida Robles. Singing starts at 29 minutes.

American Tune  – Paul Simon

Coverville  1327: Human League Cover Story and Thomas Csorba Interview  and   1328: 50th Anniversary of Led Zeppelin III   

Dr. Rick Bright resigns from the National Institute of Health

failed White House leadership

Dr. Rick Bright has resigned from the National Institute of Health on Wednesday, October 7, 2020. Here is his letter.

Of all the tools required for an effective U.S. response to the coronavirus pandemic, one that is sorely missing is the truth. Public health guidance on the pandemic response, drafted by career scientists at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, has been repeatedly overruled by political staff appointed by the Trump administration. Career scientists throughout the Department of Health and Human Services hesitate to push back when science runs counter to the administration’s unrealistically optimistic pronouncements.

Public health and safety have been jeopardized by the administration’s hostility to the truth and by its politicization of the pandemic response, undoubtedly leading to tens of thousands of preventable deaths. For that reason, and because the administration has in effect barred me from working to fight the pandemic, I resigned on Tuesday from the National Institutes of Health.

BARDA

Until April, I had for almost four years been director of the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority. When I strongly objected this past spring to the Trump administration’s insistence that BARDA support widespread access to chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine, two potentially dangerous drugs recklessly promoted by President Trump as a COVID-19 cure, I was shunted to the NIH and assigned a more limited role in the pandemic response.

My task at the NIH was to help launch a program expanding national COVID-19 testing capacity. The program is well underway and should reach nearly 1 million daily tests by the end of the year. Since early September, though, I was given no work; my services apparently were no longer needed.

I fear the benefits of dramatically improved testing capacity will be wasted unless it is a part of a coordinated national testing strategy. My recommendations to support a national plan were met with a tepid response. In an administration that suffers from widespread internal chaos, such coordination may be impossible — especially when the White House has seemed determined to slow down testing and not test people who might have asymptomatic infections.

Making it worse

From the beginning of the coronavirus outbreak, the administration’s failure to respond with a coordinated strategy only heightened the danger. Now the nation, and the world, are in the worst public health crisis in over a century. More than 1 million people worldwide have died from the pandemic; more than 211,000 Americans are dead. More than half of the states in this country are reporting rising COVID-19 cases.

Nine months into the pandemic, the United States continues to grapple with failed White House leadership. Instead, we get the recent spectacle of the president exploiting his own illness for political purposes and advising the nation, “Don’t be afraid of COVID.” Ironically, he was only able to leave the hospital after receiving two treatments that I had pushed for in January.

Meanwhile, there is still no coordinated national strategy to end the pandemic. Federal agencies, staffed with some of the best scientists in the world, continue to be politicized, manipulated, and ignored.

The country is flying blind into what could be the darkest winter in modern history. Undoubtedly, millions more Americans will be infected with the coronavirus and influenza; many thousands will die. Now, more than ever before, the public needs to be able to rely on honest, non-politicized, and unmanipulated public health guidance from career scientists.

The debate and the diagnosis

It was only a week ago when we were talking about his tax evasion.

diagnosis
From the CDC
She knew I didn’t want to watch it. I had announced to the family that I was going to opt-out, and catch the reviews on the news the next day. But her history teacher recommended that my daughter watch the first Presidential debate. Since I’m the poli sci major, and no way my wife makes it to 10:30 p.m., I agreed.

You don’t need me to tell you what a disaster that Tuesday night was. Among other things, the incumbent’s claim that ballots Were found “in a river” is not substantiated. Generally, he showed how he is trying to derail the election. His denial of his call-out to the Proud Boys was disingenuous. The performance may have played to his base. But who did he sway?

A buddy of mine was happy they didn’t need to transcribe the dialogue for closed-captioning in real-time. It would have surely been, quite literally, a headache. Lots of people wished that moderator Chris Wallace had a mute button available. And it was the incumbent who interrupted the former vice-president by at least four to one. Borowitz joked that
Biden will do the remaining debates by mail.

Business as usual

The disruptor’s political rally in Duluth, MN tapped “into the white grievance of his political bubble,” the Boston Globe noted.

Then I awoke Friday morning to the news that IMPOTUS and FLOTUS had tested positive for COVID-19. This after months of encouraging his supporters to flout health and safety guidelines. The night before, aide Hope Hicks, who had been traveling with the campaign this week, tested positive.

As is his wont, IMPOTUS had mocked Joe Biden face-to-face for wearing masks, which have been proven to slow the spread of the coronavirus. And he attended a New Jersey fundraiser while awaiting confirmation of Hicks’ COVID-19 test. It’s ironic that “she was one of the few West Wing staffers to wear a mask in meetings, which her colleagues chided her for, according to Vanity Fair.

Of course, he announced the illness on Twitter late at night. Again. Since more than 208,000 people in the US have been killed by the virus, the news sent shockwaves across the country, the financial markets, and the world.

Short-sighted, indeed

The generally right-wing Hot Air understood. “If he knew [Hicks was sick] and decided to hold the [MN] event anyway, it would be emblematic of his short-sighted, self-sabotaging approach to COVID from the beginning. Reopening early instead of focusing on containing the virus risked sustained community spread, which would lead to a longer economic slowdown, but he couldn’t wait.

“Going onstage if he knew that there was a chance he was infected risked a terrible PR backlash because it would prove that Trump was once again taking the virus too lightly, unwilling to self-quarantine to protect the people around him. But again, he had other priorities.”

Everyone from Hot Air to the Daily Kos noted that aides thought he seemed unwell Wednesday, but he kept exposing people Thursday. Well, that was the cavalier attitude then. How will the regime respond moving forward? It is imperative that they do better, including for their Secret Service detail.

At 11 a.m. Friday, Mark Meadows, chief of staff, was being evasive about the timeline of the illness. And of course, he wasn’t wearing a mask. It’s 1) the nature of this cabal, but 2) the absolute wrong message. Meadows was wearing a mask when he accompanied The Donald on Marine One to Walter Reed Hospital Friday night.

Fortunately, Joe and Jill Biden tested negative for coronavirus. Unsurprisingly, Joe wished the infected couple a swift recovery. This after IMPOTUS said Tuesday night, “There’s nothing smart about you, Joe.” Biden’s so stupid that he actually advocates wearing a mask.

Whereas the other guy said at a rally a couple of months ago to “slow the testing down.” That’s how you have a garden party for Amy Coney Barrett on September 26 and end of having at least eight people, including Chris Christie and Kellyanne Conway, end up with coronavirus.

Will getting sick make him a believer?

You may recall that COVID denier Boris Johnson in the UK had very mild symptoms at first, but was later was debilitated and almost died. He went from the announcement on March 27 to hospitalization on April 6 to going back to work on April 27. We don’t know the trajectory of the disease for IMPOTUS, although the medical community has learned much in the past seven months.

His COVID-19 diagnosis is an indictment of his handling of the pandemic. The case “is exemplary of our failure at the federal level,” said Dr. Michael Mina, an assistant professor of epidemiology at the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health. And it worries U.S. officials and national security experts, who fear aggressive moves from foreign adversaries.

Can it be a teachable moment? Some see “an opportunity to course-correct. The question is whether he will see his illness as a way to change his own narrative.” I genuinely hope so. But frankly, I doubt it.

August rambling: bots botch puns

“Today I find the mask useful”

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XKCD. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 License.
I woke up from a dream earlier this month. The only thing I remember is someone saying Bots botch puns. Please leave your psychological analyses in the comments.

Could American Evangelicals Spot the Antichrist? Here Are the Biblical Predictions.

What Makes Trump an Autocrat?

Maryanne Trump Barry says He has no principles.

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: US is making a mockery of the phrase a jury of your peers and Border Wall II.

Steve Bannon needs to watch The Inspectors.

Mnuchin paved way for postal service shake-up.

Trans Women Who Report Abuse in Prison Are Targets of Retaliation.

Aging memories may not be ‘worse’, just ‘different’.

CDC: Social Determinants of Health.

Harriette Cole: Have I been blind to my white friends’ true feelings?

Movies Misled the Masses. Can They Lead Us Into a More Equal Future?

Inside the Courthouse Break-In Spree That Landed Two White-Hat Hackers in Jail.

Placebos prove powerful even when people know they’re taking one.

Family of a young NYS Corrections Officer killed in a drunk-driving accident had some blunt advice for those reading his obituary.

Arthur writes about toxic positivity.

Brain waves can be used to predict future pain sensitivity.

How to Learn Everything: The MasterClass Diaries.

The American Scientists Who Saved London From Nazi Drones.

Pentagon’s UFO Group Is Officially Active, After Years of Secrecy.

The untold story of Jackie Kennedy’s wedding dress.

Countdown – the game show of spelling, math, and whoopsies.

What is SEO

What is a 2nd cousin once removed?

Chuck is fifty-seven.

Audio link, almost ten minutes of a 1959 Stan Laurel interview.

COVID-19

The Trump Pandemic: A blow-by-blow account.

“Immune to Evidence”: How Dangerous Coronavirus Conspiracies Spread. To wit:

Dangerous Oleander Extract Not a Cure, despite What He Said.

CDC Details Its Massive Mental Health Impact.

Today I find the mask useful
along with sunglasses
to hide my tear streaked face,
not wanting to scare the barista
who has enough to deal with
behind his own mask.
-Transitions” by Tammi Truax, poet laureate of Portsmouth, NH.

Mississippi School Opening Disaster.

Email Phishing Scams – Bad Actors Seeking to Take Advantage through “SBA Loan Application”.

Navajo Nation residents face coronavirus without running water.

How rocket scientists would approach planning to reopen schools.

Think it kills the centuries-old practice of sharing business cards? Think again.

COVID language.

XKCD. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 License.
DNC

Joe Biden in his speech accepting the Democratic nomination for US President; Fact-checking him. (He does quite well, unlike his opponent’s Monday speech at the RNC.)

Hidden messages in Elizabeth Warren’s video.

Bernie Sanders speech, and link to others.

Now I Know

Why the Zebra Got its Stripes and The Stranger Things About a Scientific Constant and You Don’t Have To Be A Big Shot and The Turtle With Bricks for Wheels and The Aliens in the Cupboard and From Facebook to Mug Shot.

New blog

Alison Stonbely’s blog, Secrets of the Forest, looking at art and racism.

For the record

I really don’t care about Jerry Falwell Jr.’s sex life. Consenting adults and all that. What was loathsome has been his sanctimonious hypocrisy and his golden parachute.

MUSIC

Lyric Quartette by William Grant Still.

Outerspace – Zbonics and Rebecca Jade. Plus Sobrina Taylor interviews Rebecca Jade!

Pop Psalms: (What’s So Funny ’Bout) Peace, Love, and Understanding – Nick Lowe.

Solace: A Mexican Serenade by Scott Joplin.

Coverville 1321: The Sparks Cover Story and This Town Ain’t Big Enough For Both Of Us – The Sparks.

K-Chuck Radio: The World of the Black MIDI.

The Curse of Ham – Buggy Jive.

Christopher Cuomo – Randy Rainbow.

Kung Fu Fighting – Carl Douglas.

DOLLY PARTON Steers Her Empire Through the Pandemic— and Keeps It Growing.