30 December 2020

Good Night, Stinkin Prig

I have a dream.

At 12.01 PM on 20 January, 2021 wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024 gets indicted by both the Manhattan DA and the New York AG on criminal charges.

Boeing Boeing - part the thirteenth

One aspect of the now flying again MAX is how little has been written about a previous, and far more pervasive, issue with the 737. An extensive report from 'The Seattle Times' , in five parts, details a decades long screw up in design and engineering, and long term cover up. The issue was that the rudder of the 737, from the outset in the mid-60s, was a shitty design and implementation. It was engineering too clever by half to save a couple of bucks. Literally. Planes crashed and people were killed. Boeing, the FAA, and, to a lesser extent, the NTSB let it happen. The FAA, in particular, had already been captured by Boeing.

A shorter piece is in the wiki. Same basic facts, without the extensive history.

Deep state. Yeah, right. Owned by American Big Bidnezz.

28 December 2020

Parallax View - part the thirty eighth

Another week's up, so here are today's numbers:
  >= 1,000 -   957 
100 to 999 - 1,760
(New) grand total of counties reads at 3,132. While I've not gotten into an argument with the Topo folks over this re-definition of 'affected' counties, it certainly looks like a move to bolster wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024's perpetual lying.

Something of a mixed bag. The Topo map shows a marked decrease in the total for upper groups, and remarkable thinning out of 100+ counties in the Northern Plains. On the other hand, the Johns Hopkins derived map (per capita) continues to show that area deep in disease.

The CNN map, also per capita, continues to show the Northern Plains still quite hot.

Yet, on the next hand, the NYT map, again per capita, shows the Northern Plains abating, but the mid-south from Tennessee on west pushing ever upward. Of course, The Times admits the obvious:
Holiday reporting quirks will likely blur the country's data. Testing was expected to decrease around Christmas and New Year's, and many states have said they will not report data on certain days. More typical reporting patterns were expected to resume in early January.
Is this data showing we're around the curve, or just cheering for finding a lode of fool's gold? Fauci:
And the reason I'm concerned and my colleagues in public health are concerned also is that we very well might see a post-seasonal, in the sense of Christmas, New Year's, surge, and, as I have described it, as a surge upon a surge, because, if you look at the slope, the incline of cases that we have experienced as we have gone into the late fall and soon-to-be-early winter, it is really quite troubling.
My bet goes to significant under-reporting over the holiday, since the last Topo map before Christmas had the 1000+ group at 979 and the 100-999 group at 1,760. The bottom two groups totalled 26. The chances that the two ends of the spectrum would shift so fast isn't likely. We'll see what happens to the data during the week. If there's been under-reporting, it may catch up. Or reporting will continue to be spotty until at least 11 January 2021.

22 December 2020

Parallax View - parth the thirty seventh

Another week's up (well, a bit less), so here are Monday's numbers:
  >= 1,000 -   979
100 to 999 - 1,779
(New) grand total of counties reads at 3,133. While I've not gotten into an argument with the Topo folks over this re-definition of 'affected' counties, it certainly looks like a move to bolster wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024's perpetual lying.

Not much to report on the data front. County total is up a tad. The bridging through the middle America axis continues apace, except for South Dakota and Nebraska. The top groups have, more or less, swapped spit and the bottom two have dropped a tick. Neither condition represents progress in getting Covid under control.

One is tempted to discuss Batshit J. Moron's attempts at coup and ignoring, totally, the Covid situation, but that would turn this weekly entry into a text that would rival "War and Peace" in extent.

21 December 2020

Thought For The Day - 21 December 2020

If it doesn't have a spike protein, is it still a coronavirus? If it still has a spike protein, does it matter how it might otherwise mutate, even if it changes its attack vector? If it still has a spike protein, won't the mRNA vaccines still work, even if it changes its attack vector? If it sheds its spike protein, will it become another, hopefully less damaging virus? So many questions. Let's look for some answers.

Here's a preliminary answer, and a bit dated (in pandemic time), from August
What scientists can say is that the virus seems to tolerate mutations to this key piece of the coronavirus, and more elaborate methods of focusing immune responses may become necessary. "But just because we find that there are mutations that are tolerated, it doesn't necessarily mean anything bad is going to happen," Greaney said.
Furthermore, here is an undated report (but cites others from the August time frame) on how mutations happen and what happens as a result.
The G614 mutation significantly impacts antigenicity of the virus, but not at all in the way we were expecting. The G form of Spike is more sensitive to neutralizing antibodies than the D form. This was reproducible in mice, monkeys, and humans (Weissman 2020).
If you don't read the whole paper, the G form is the mutated Covid, while the D form is the original (so far as I know) from Wuhan. In other words, the mRNA vaccines blocking the spike protein shouldn't/won't be diminshed by this mutation.

19 December 2020

Thought For The Day - 19 December 2020

Well, that didn't take long. Well, a tad longer than I expected, still, I was able to get my post out just under the wire yesterday:
There could also have been a hit on our ridiculous voting machines during the election, which is now obvious that I won big, making it an even more corrupted embarrassment for the USA.
-- wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024
Didn't, yet, add the assertion that Russia was really, really backing Hillary. 'Just look what they did to me!!!' 'Me!!!' Nor blaming Krebs's CISA for 'losing the election!'

May be tomorrow?

To be clear, while computer based, none of the Batshit J. Moron's whipping boy voting systems are vulnerable to the hack.
Dominion Voting Systems does not now - nor has it ever - used the SolarWinds Orion Platform, which was subject of the DHS emergency directive dated December 13, 2020 (Emergency Directive 21-01).
Which is not to assert that some state election systems don't use Orion somewhere on their network(s). The key to understanding the hack is that, while it entered through the bathroom Windows, the purpose of the hack was to control the network. Many (most?) voting machines run on antique versions of Windows (not Dominion, as it happens). Which is to say, if those machines are networked with other sub-nets with Orion support, they were vulnerable.

The bottom line, so to speak, is 'security through obscurity'
To be clear, individual machines are notoriously vulnerable to hackers, but the decentralized nature of the US's election infrastructure means that it's hard to change votes en-masse.
To bad I haven't read that statement in the Lamestream press. I suppose that civlians, or idiots like Benito Trumpilini, just assume that every computing device is set up for Twitter and every other internet option. Not yet.

18 December 2020

Thought For The Day - 18 December 2020

Now, as we learn more about the Russian cyber hack, we can see what comes next.

` 1 - wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024 will tie the hack to Chris Krebs, since the initial intrusion was in the spring, under his watch.

` 2 - Therefore, Batshit J. Moron will use this incursion as more 'evidence' that the 2020 election had to have been hacked by the Russians. And that Krebs's assertion that the election was the most secure, etc. has to be bullshit; he didn't even see a hack in his own systems. ex-President AuH2O 2020 will say, 'see, the Russians have been after me from the beginnning'.

17 December 2020

A Treasure Map

Another attempt to map the 2020 election. Well worth the look. In all, the urban/rural, blue/red, Dem/Fascist grouping holds. Although the author does make the point that some of those places are, shall we say, mixed. After all, there are some old, angry, grievance driven white guys in the Boston metro.

Note the legend shows not just the candidate symbols, but tells the reader that each glyph is 250,000 votes. That's significant. In my native New England, which you'll immediately note if you've spent any time here, the Red dots are in the shitkicker places while the Blue dots are in and around cities. As the author intended and explains, another point of the map is to refute, "Try to Impeach this" from 2016. Which report also fact checked the map, and found blue counties morphed to red, and none the other way round.

As the author tells us, presidents aren't elected by who gets the most land.

15 December 2020

Parallax View - part the thirty sixth

Another week's up (well, a bit more), so here are today's numbers:
  >= 1,000 -   969
100 to 999 - 1,790
(New) grand total of counties reads at 3,130. While I've not gotten into an argument with the Topo folks over this re-definition of 'affected' counties, it certainly looks like a move to bolster wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024's perpetual lying.

The Topo folks just updated the map (last was 10 December) as I was about to hit publish, so a day more than the usual week. No need for an update.

Total counties is down a tick, just. Top groups are at 2,759, up a tad, but continuing to grow. Bottom groups are up a tick to 26.

Bridges, do we have bridges! There are plenty of routes now available for the Memorial Trophy Dash. Depending on how you count, and using a single longitude rather than two, it's anywhere from 5 to 9; more if you count the splits and merges to the west. The western longitude, from Big Bend Texas to Montana, is nearly solid; how soon will that Covid Divide disappear? "Won't be no Covid where Real Americans live!!" The ambiguity arises from the fact that some spurs merge on one side of the main Covid Divide or the other and thus might be conservatively counted as a single bridge.

Early reporting had it that the White House Superspreaders were to get shots from the first batch. Talk about rewarding truly bad behavior!! Since then, that has been retracted. We'll see if that actually happens.

14 December 2020

Thought For The Day - 14 December 2020 [update]

The last entry in the 'Thought For The Day' series included this
To wit, we've no evidence yet whether any of them is sterilizing/neutralizing.
'Them', of course are the myriad Covid vaccines.

Today's reporting emphasizes this problem
Dr. Sandro Cinti, an infectious disease specialist and medical professor at the University of Michigan, explained that it remains unclear whether people vaccinated against the virus can still infect someone else.

The trials only tracked Covid-19 in people who were showing symptoms. But according to the CDC, about 40% of cases are in people who show no symptoms.i

"You have to wear your mask," he said. "What they didn't look at was if you get the vaccine and you're protected, can you still get some virus that then goes in your nose and then infect somebody else."
None of the good doctors had the gonads to warn the rest of us that the hoax-and-personal-freedom cabal will instantly stop wearing masks and keeping distance and congregating. Nice guys these doctors, but let's get real: the larger segment of the population most likely to infect, for a long time, won't be the vaccinated group, but the Covidiots.

Well, that didn't take long. The original text was written before I consumed my dead trees NYT, so I only just read this more extensive piece on the issue. Still and all, no explicit discussion of outing lying Covidiots, but that's pretty clear: keep out the fakers. Of note is the historical fact that smallpox ID cards were mandatory as far back as 1880, when Real America still existed.

10 December 2020

Death of an Island - part the seventh [update]

Well, the mainstream media haven't, that I've yet seen, made the effort to discuss the existential threat faced by Block Island, or other USofA tourist dependent islands. But here's a signature piece on the Caribbean experience.
The Bahamas reopened to tourism on July 1 after a two-month lockdown, confident the islands had the spread of coronavirus under control. Almost immediately, the number of cases in the Bahamas spiked. Many tourists came from Florida, which has had more than 430,000 coronavirus cases, a figure larger than the entire population of the Bahamas.
One hopes that my beloved Island fares better.

The above is the content of the last episode in this saga, from July. Reporting in 'The Block Island Times' since then have, mostly, been non-negative. Town revenue when last reported was down, but by less than it might have been.


For the last few weeks, the Medical Center has been reporting increasing number of cases. This is from today's story.
"I would say 30 of them are from that point, and 20 of those 40 are in the last 10 days. It's blossomed for us," said Warcup. He noted that in the past he had seen many asymptomatic cases, but "in the last 10 days we have been seeing more symptomatic respiratory symptoms."
As everywhere else, if populations ignore the science, bad things happen. The Island has about 900 settled residents, and some second home folks who spend time there well off season. We stay, mostly, during off season. When we left to go at the end of October, 'The Times' reported that the last waste water Covid test came up 0. Phew. In the last six weeks, geometric progression is teaching Islanders some math. A significant proportion of Islanders could be in danger before New Years if they don't mind their Ps and Qs.

This is exactly the point.
A virus carrying one mutation -- a small genetic change they've flagged as C2416T -- was apparently carried to the conference by a single person, and ended up infecting 245,000 people. A second viral strain with a mutation known as G26233T ended up in 88,000 people.
Ain't science a gas?

09 December 2020


Once again, Blue States taxes pay for what red states refuse to provide their citizens.
The US government plans to give SpaceX nearly a billion dollars to beam internet from space to people across rural America, where three out of five people say access to broadband is still a pressing issue. ... The FCC did award the bulk of the $9 billion worth of subsidies to more traditional providers.
If this sounds a tad familiar, well it is. Remember the Motorola satellite phone, known mostly as Iridium? Never much of a player, and this paper spells out why. The paper is a couple of years old, but still sets out the issues.

And what about 10s of thousands of teeny objects in low Earth orbit? Too small to radar track? Will the next ISS or moon or Mars rocket smash into some? Have a read of the wiki page which collects much of the background.

Dear God, will this mooching off the productive states never end!

Moscow Mitch is always happy to send money to the slovenly in his caucus, but as he tries evermore to reduce the Blue States to red state poverty, he'll be killing the redneck's Golden Goose. What other source of moolah does he think there is? Stupid is as stupid does.

By The Numbers - part the third

Well, all states have reached 99% and Safe Harbor has passed, so what's the numbers?

2016  Trump -   62,984,828
      Clinton - 65,853,514
      Whackos -  5,946,559

2020  Trump - 74,222,484
      Biden - 81,282,896
So, a bit more than 7,000,000 in favor of Sleepy Joe. One number not often mentioned: a bit more than 5,000,000 of that margin is just California.

The major takeaway from these numbers is simple: Trump in 2020 did a smidgeon better than Trump + Whackos in 2016. In round numbers:
2016 - 69,000,000
2020 - 74,000,000

The Democrats, on the other hand, blew the top off with 16,000,000 more votes.

The Biden margin is 7,060,412. Not a can of creamed corn, that. And it did reach 7 million without a whole lot of effort.

Of course, the question is, is it reasonable to infer that 2016 Whackos have gone all in on Trump this year? Certainly the Johnson folks would. The Stein, possibly a tad less, but more likely than for Biden. More than a 7 million margin's a landslide anyway you dice it.

Wins By a Nose

Two interesting pieces in today's NYT, one about "Bloom County" highlighting Opus's Nose, and the other finally going somewhat deeper into the process of sterilizing/neutralizing (though neither term is used) vaccines. The bottom line, as usual and discussed in these missives before, is that being vaccinated may, likely will, lead to a surge. "We don't need no stinkin mask!!"
Vaccinated people who have a high viral load but don't have symptoms "would actually be, in some ways, even worse spreaders because they may be under a false sense of security," Dr. Maldonado said.
Or a true sense of arrogance.

08 December 2020

Maple Syrup, Yum!

In a recent crossword puzzle blog argument over maple syrup, the contest was among Vermonters, New Yorkers, and, wait for it... Canadians. Turned out, one of the contestants (not I, alas) availed themselves of the wiki or similar and demonstrated that Canada is the world leader in maple syrup.
Today, after rapid growth in the 1990s, Canada produces more than 80 percent of the world's maple syrup, producing about 73 million kg (80,000 short tons) in 2016.
Who knew? Not this, mostly life-long, New Englander. I was crushed. Ah, but now it's time for our Northern Neighbors who are being crushed.
"Over the last few days, we've seen new records of Covid-19 cases in a number of provinces. Hospitalizations are rising, families are losing people and our most vulnerable are at risk. Just because we're getting closer to vaccines doesn't mean we can afford to become complacent," warned Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau during a press conference Monday.
The point of this essay isn't about schadenfreude. It's about us ignoring history, in this case, their's. Canada has its Thanksgiving in October, the 12th this year. And guess what? Canada had a post chowdown Covid surge. Did wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024 and his Covid taskforce pay attention and provide evidence in their warning? Apparently not, but the WaPo did; other news outlets as well.

Even though something like 90% of Canadians live within 100 miles of the USofA border, their climate runs about a month ahead, at least in the fall. Indoor socializing increased. Who would have thought that might happen? Why repeat the failures of others who are on the same path, just further along? I can't think of a reason.

Thought For The Day - 8 December 2020

You may have read it here first, but the various news feeds last night finally got around to the punch line wrt Covid vaccines. To wit, we've no evidence yet whether any of them is sterilizing/neutralizing. That quality is important, because if they're not, and folks who get the shot assume that they'll never be contagious, yet anothe reason for another surge on top of whatever one is currently in place.

So, we have two flies in the ointment: the quality of the vaccines and knuckleheads who fake having been vaccinated. Ragin contagion.

Have a nice day.

07 December 2020

Parallax View - part the thirty fifth

Another week's up, so here are today's numbers:
  >= 1,000 -   909
100 to 999 - 1,788
(New) grand total of counties reads at 3,132. While I've not gotten into an argument with the Topo folks over this re-definition of 'affected' counties, it certainly looks like a move to bolster wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024's perpetual lying.

Now that it's been reported that you'll get a tracking card for your vaccinations, I expect the Red state knuckledraggers will subvert the system. It would be useful to have stickers like wearing one of those 'I Voted' stickers, except with 'I be vaccinated'. Of course, there'd spring up a robust black market in counterfeit stickers just so the anti-vaxxers and Covid deniers and general idiots can stop with the masks and distancing and such. Wouldn't surprise me that, once the actual cards go into circulation, counterfeits will appear; just so the Covidiots can have one to show when they get accosted. Never underestimate the perfidy of rednecks. 'I ain't gettin no shot, but I won't wear no mask neither, so I'll get me a fake card to show'.

Numerous reports that other countries are instituting 'I be vaccinated' identification as well. Just let's see if there's any enforcement.

The biggest issue with this week's map: the bottom two groups now amount to just 25 counties, or that the top two groups amount to 2,697! There are now, at least, seven bridges across the longitude from Galveston to Manitoba crossing only 100+ counties. Yikes! Paul Bunyan hop along with no trouble.

I suppose it's bad form to cheer, but Rudy getting nabbed is both poetic justice and no surprise. Whether he ends up bunking with Herman in the Afterlife is the remaining question.

06 December 2020

Live By The Sword

Yet another in the continuing, but infrequent thank Keynes, installment featuring Greg Mankiw. In today's episode of "How the Stone Heart Bleeds", we find Greg ignoring the key factor explaining the decline of interest rates since, about, Reagan.
As income inequality has risen over the past few decades, resources have shifted from poorer households to richer ones. To the extent that the rich have higher propensities to save, more money flows into capital markets to fund investment.
That's the first of six bullets he offers to explain why interest rates decline: over supply. He painlessly ignores the other side of the coin, which is that the rich have a long history of, and well documented, much lower marginal propensity to consume. In other words, throw more moolah at a rich man, say by substantially cutting his taxes, he'll put almost all of it into passive savings (not bloody likely, matey) and assets, like say, the stock market. Such folks aren't in the business of building "more money flows into capital markets to fund investment", but in chasing capital gains, not dividends or physical capital acquisition generated returns. As more moolah flows in, share prices rise and E/P (yes, the pros recognize the inverse) ratios drop to meet Fed instrument interest rates; modulo real risk. That's your answer as to why the stock market hits all time highs in the midst of a pandemic and depression. Mo money, mo price. Greg doesn't mention that, of course.

The other side of the income inequality is just that the 99% have, relatively, less to spend on consumer goods and services, so producers have less incentive to build or replace production. And, of course, they haven't. As usual with the micro-view of any macroeconomic problem, thanks be to Samuelson, it is assumed and asserted that macro problems are analyzed as if they're just a mass of micro problems. If this pandemic has shown anything at all, economically and quantly speaking, it's that the collapse of aggregate demand is what drives us into depression. It's a leading indicator, not trailing.

One might also speculate that technological progress is running up against Mother Nature. Once the periodic table was filled in, ignoring for practical purposes the super-heavy (mostly manmade) elements, the limits of invention were set. Yes, on the organic side, the number of molecules to be concocted is virtually infinite, but not so on the inorganic side. To the extent that software has eaten the economy, how will we pull off the equivalent of the farm to factory migration of the first half of the 20th, since the notion of re-training a 50 year old at-best-GED generic flunky into, say, a game coder. Or a C++ coder to write the next GL application? Moving from farm to factory, and better living standards, didn't demand significantly greater skill sets. One might reasonably argue that being a farmer takes more smarts than turning a wrench in Ford's River Rouge plant.

05 December 2020

Mask of The Red Death - part the second

We will bury you. -- Nikita Khrushchev/1956

Does anyone really think the Soviets, aka today's Russians, have stopped? Of course not. Colluding with Russia might surely be considered treason. The first installment in this series was two and a half years ago:
My time in DC convinces me that the intelligence community, the NSA in particular, has the Trump Tapes. It's perfectly legal for NSA/CIA/FBI to sweep up Americans who engage with foreigners in treasonous activities. Doesn't matter where their feet are at the time. The cabal knows what it did, and was counting on not winning to keep their activities from public view. Thus the FISA nonsense. They just wanted the money. Just as Jared extorted from Qatar. In due time, the community will release the tapes. Whether Orange Julius Caesar spends time in prison is the only question.
So, yesterday it was reported that wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024's stooges he recently shoved into DoD are blocking Biden's transition folks from talking to DoD intelligence. As it happens, NSA reports up the chain of command at DoD. One might wonder what it is that wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024 doesn't want them to know? As was said two and a half years ago, NSA and wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024 know what he did, who he and his stooges communicated with, and what information was passed betwixt them.

The end game is now crystal clear. Stop Biden from seeing the raw feeds captured by NSA (I suspect he was privy at the time, after all he was second in command) before he can get that pardon, however done. If Biden has any hope of actually getting anything done, he as to
1 - spike wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024 for good and ever
2 - cow Senate Republicans

The best, perhaps only, way to accomplish that is to show the American people the receipts. He has to do it. And if before Inauguration, all the better. Before wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024 has the chance to get his pardon. Although, outing him after he's scuttled off to his lair might also aid in revealing him to be the craven coward that he truly is. Getting him a room at The Gray Bar Hotel is an extra.

Have I mentioned that I spent some time, around the time of Iran Contra, on Jack Anderson's staff? Not long, as it turned out, but long enough to report on another guns for money scheme, the guns going to Ghana. You can look it up. Met some spooks out in suburban Maryland in the course of the reporting. They look and act like what you see in the movies and the teevee. They know what wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024 did.

04 December 2020

I Told You So - 4 December 2020

Way back in January, these missives observed that wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024 would ultimately take the martial law step to remain in power. Just like any petit dictator.

So, another day, another batshit moron. Now, where did I put my jackboots and brown shirt?

This is another 'appointee' at DoD by wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024
On December 2, [Scott O'Grady, a former fighter pilot and Trump loyalist] retweeted an account that shared an article that said former national security adviser Michael Flynn had shared a petition that called for martial law. He then retweeted the same account which suggested that Trump should declare martial law.
How long until wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024 sees the light?

03 December 2020

Parallax View - part the thirty fourth dot five [update]

Another half (or thereabouts) week's up, so here are today's numbers:
  >= 1,000 -   860
100 to 999 - 1,806
(New) grand total of counties reads at 3,132. While I've not gotten into an argument with the Topo folks over this re-definition of 'affected' counties, it certainly looks like a move to bolster wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024's perpetual lying.

Happy days are here again!! Recall back when the Covid Sea to Shining Sea Memorial 100+ Trophy Dash was first proposed? This was in the height of the Southern Excursion of Covid, and there was nearly a straight shot from the Atlantic to the Pacific, starting in Virginia-Florida to California. But those two recalcitrant counties in New Mexico, Hildago and Grant, neither of which could get its act together and reach 100 active cases (this was after the change in definition instituted by Topo folks). They are, after all, small population jurisdictions: Hildago at 4,198 and Grant at 26,998. Well, thanks be to the good folks in Grant county and Callahan County, TX, the final bricks in the Yellow Brick Road from Atlantic to Pacific have been laid. To be fair to the rest of the Covidiots, there's also been some filling in of qualifying counties (eight, count 'em eight, bridges including across North Dakota and south Texas) through the Deep South states, but none necessary to complete the journey.

Let's hear it for Grant County!!

Vicissitudes being what they are, just in case either county backslides between now and Monday, a commeration seemed appropriate. Enjoy.

02 December 2020

I Told You So - 2 December 2020

Way back in January, these missives observed that wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024 would ultimately take the martial law step to remain in power. Just like any petit dictator.

Well, Flynn has floated it
Recently pardoned former National Security Advisor and retired Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn and Atlanta-based attorney L. Lin Wood joined a growing list of President Donald Trump's devotees calling for martial law and having the military oversee a new presidential election.
How long until wannaBePresident Huey Long 2024 sees the light?