The “Leopard Ate My Face” subreddit is full of recirculated social media posts from anti-vaxxers who died from Covid-19. And people caught for committing crimes after they posted about their plans. Which brings me to a tragic bit of insight from the very first Rango video and my work for the government and in cybersecurity:
Everything you do here is permanent.
There is no delete button. That is a carefully propagated illusion. When I ask Plagus to undelete my emails in Check 1,2 he says he can’t. He’s lying, which is what evil robots do best. But when the FBI asks Facebook or Google for your entire search history they get it. And if they don’t they can get it from your ISP or the NSA.
I’ve regretted many of the things I’ve said on social media that many people still remember and I’ve recovered millions of “deleted” files that weren’t. It’s an illusion, files are simply marked deleted and everything is logged. That’s why all of my posts are public. Because they are anyway, virtually.
Once they hit a server on the internet you are immortalized, archived, categorized and baptized into the matrix. I try to live my life without shame, it is a burdensome tool. Being open and honest shouldn’t require bravery, but it does. But doing so reduces your need to lie & deny so you can focus on more important things that reflect your immortal legacy on the web
Which brings me back around to A Leopard Ate My Face. That is not a legacy that does anybody justice, neither the deceased or their families and friends. But they serve to inform of us of our own mortality and the immortal legacy anyone reading this is leaving behind. The best way to get your name off the list of people who made all of our lives harder in the worst pandemic since smallpox, the plague or Spanish Flu is to simply get vaccinated. You can even brag about it after you’re done, or complain about your side effects. Everybody should. It’s your legacy, and if you couldn’t help the rest of the world get through it, much less yourself, you can be assured it will be on your internet gravestone.
“Rango, I’m an autonomous, distributed, self-replicating agent of evil. I don’t have a recycling bin. I have dev null” – Check 1,2
Trump ushered us into a post-American world.
People all over the globe gave us their sympathy as they watched the most powerful nation in history succumb to an autocratic con man. We have pulled back from that precipice and are now faced with the task of rebuilding. The damage has been done, there is no erasing Trumpism from the record. But future generations must understand what happened to us so they can prevent it from happening again.
This week at least 60 million Americans proudly proclaimed their allegiance to Trump, doubling down on racism, misogyny, a culture of lies and anti-science rhetoric. We can’t erase these scars, they are our shame to bare. Hate. Ignorance. Self.
We already had enough shame to bare. From the genocide of our indigenous people to the racial violence infecting our law enforcement, we are a people burdened with violence. Christian evangelicals rabid for blood, slavery, racism, and most notably, stupidity. We have revealed to the world how ignorant our culture truly is, and those that think they’re smart but are not also think they are righteous.
The word you are looking for is evil.
Trump and Jr made a deliberate calculation when they stopped the US Post Office from distributing 650 million masks to Americans, then again when they tried to cast shade on the vote-by-mail process, encouraging their own followers to go out & stand in line and get infected with Covid-19.Stupid thinks it’s smart, evil thinks it’s good.Of the top 376 counties reporting new Covid-19 infections, 93% of them were Republican.
They discussed their plans with Nixon-era journalist Bob Woodward, which must be the dumbest thing the Trump crime family has ever done.Trump is going to flee the country like the coward he is. And he will be faced with multiple indictments, from tax fraud to rape, like the criminal he is. And unfortunately, Covid-19 will continue to ravage the nation.
There is no need for us to retain our former glory. Rather, we join the league of nations including Italy & Germany that demonstrate the potential for evil in their electorate. It manifested here on our verdant shores. 240,000 Americans are dead, the office of the president has been disgraced, and the once all-powerful USA has succumbed to the will of an autocrat encouraging domestic terrorism and his wish to see “all sides” of fascism and racism as valid.
Too much for one man to effect change, other than by his vote. Which Trump lost and still refuses to acknowledge, proving for all of history he is a whiny little bitch, a petulant man-baby spoiled with a silver spoon in his anus that enjoys taking pleasure in deceiving the dumbest among us. He told them he “loves the uneducated” and they lined up and had an idiot parade.
They’re still marching.
The American kakistocracy clown car is on its final lap. But the damage has been done. It’s a post-American world. But Americans are nothing if we are not faithful to our ideals, even if our ancestors did not obey them. Moral fiber is a continuum, a continuous variable, not a constant. The future belongs to the agile, not the adherents of doctrine.
But what of today.
Biden is the president-elect, and no amount of pouting, feet stomping and empty rhetoric can change that fact. Trump’s refusal to issue a concession, and his vow to continue asserting his win in the light of millions of votes to the contrary and people crowding the streets to express their hatred for him, speak volumes of his narcissism and the unbelievable gullibility of his base. They are rallying behind him today even as he golfs.
With god’s blessing we can put the era of Make America Gullible Again behind us. But we are now in a post-American world and it serves to inform us going forward. Too much to bare for any one person.But today we rejoice. We flood the commons. We dance like nobody’s watching. The protest signs are all the same. “You’re fired”.
Welcome to the new epoch. It’s a post-American world. And now that we’ve pulled back from the precipice of authoritarianism we have an obligation to the rest of the world and future generations to explain precisely how and why this happened so that they may never walk this tightrope again.
Just like the Pied Piper
Led rats through the streets
We dance like marionettes
Swaying to the symphony
Just like the Pied Piper
Led rats through the streets
We dance like marionettes
Swaying to the symphony
Swaying to the symphony of destruction – Megadeth
Despite having no qualifications whatsoever and a standard disclaimer printed on my forehead that states I should not own keys, people routinely ask me for my opinion on subjects I don’t know anything about. Usually they’re just fishing for a punchline from the architect’s school of comedy. Basically, measure twice cut once. Finish the fight with one punch or go home a loser.
These days we’re all armchair biologists, fighting a social justice war against Covid deniers, anti-maskers, anti-vaxxers, and Trumpian propaganda. Either that or you’re part of the problem. Change a mind, save a life. Never in the history of our nation has a culture of ignorance infected the ruling class to such a degree. We are literally dying in a kakistocracy as the nation faces down the worst global pandemic in 100 years.
The most visible consequence of this abdication of duty is that thousands of Americans are suffering and dying every day. An endless train wreck, can’t look away. Previously supported by an economy that left the station back in March, a flying shitbomb on rails.
I make a lot of predictions, which in hindsight always look completely obvious. That’s an easy comedy axis and fun for everybody. But when I was asked this week, on three separate occasions, how I feel about our future, there was a palpable gravity to the question. People are legitimately worried, struggling emotionally, facing hard corners financially, and choking down the very real threat of suffering and death from a virus unknown to humanity last year.
I’ll tell you the same thing I told them. I’m hopeful. I have a hard-earned reputation for being overly optimistic, and a shadow reputation for being a cynical jerk. But from my view in the sniper’s chair I can see past the horizon, and it conveys a unique vantage point.
The harsh truth of the matter is that after decades of trying we have never created a safe and effective vaccine for any strain of coronavirus. But we have developed treatments for symptoms, the best example being the common cold. And in the case of the unrelated retrovirus HIV, we’ve flipped the diagnosis from a death sentence to a viral management protocol consisting of a cocktail of drugs that allow people to enjoy long and productive lives.
There will be treatment options before there will be a vaccine, and drugs such as remdesiver point the way to a similar storyline for SARS-Cov-2. And there will come a day when testing positive for SARS-Cov-2 does not mean you will develop Covid-19, much as testing positive for HIV today does not mean you will develop AIDS. Asymptomatic or not.
That’s a critical consideration because on the vaccine front, the challenge is formidable. The best analogy we have is smallpox, the most dreaded disease in history and a lifetime sentence of disfigurement and blindness for the survivors. Nobody in their right mind would be having these pedantic arguments about masks if the enemy was smallpox, we would all stay home and shut up. It is the first pathogen to ever be successfully eradicated from humans, possibly the greatest medical achievement of mankind. There are only two known samples left on the planet, one at the CDC facility in Atlanta and the other in a vault in Moscow. Let’s hope they stay there.
Eliminating the devil of smallpox required a massively coordinated effort involving every country in the world. It also took over 200 years. Keep that in mind as we look for a vaccine for SARS-Cov-2 this year while anti-vaxxer and anti-masker clown car parades around looking for a conspiracy between Bill Gates and George Soros, then blames Obama and his tan suit. The evidence is clearly in Hillary’s emails.
Those people are the real enemy. That kind of ignorance conflates the threat of the virus exponentially and the USA is now the unenviable poster child of the Dunning Kruger effect. Stupid thinks it’s smart.
Stay with me though. The story of the smallpox vaccine is the story of all vaccines. It was first created in 1796 by Edward Jenner, and it was the first successful vaccine ever. People had been trying for hundreds if not thousands of years, with efforts spanning the globe and as deeply rooted as indigenous shamans. But it was Edward who observed that milkmaids who previously had caught cowpox did not catch smallpox and showed that inoculated vaccinia protected against inoculated variola virus. That insight changed the world, a single moment of grace that carved a path through history.
The conferred immunity from cowpox to smallpox is the basis of every vaccine developed since. Using either a deactivated portion of genetic material or the information conveyed in messenger RNA, vaccines work by triggering an immune response in the host. Once taught to recognize the offending pathogen by its genetic signature the human immune system has an astounding capacity to deliver a preemptive strike against any subsequent infection vector.
SARS-Cov-2 is tricky though in that it’s a zoonotic virus that first jumped the species barrier in 2019 and gave us Covid-19. In news cycles it’s a newborn. In terms of biology it’s a genetic descendant of SARS, which originated in bats, and related to MERS which originated in camels. Note that it is not in any way related to influenza, which originated in birds (think Avian flu) and then jumped to pigs (Swine flu) and finally caught the late bus home on humans. However, much like the flu it’s here to stay, and will likely become endemic just like the flu. The vaccine will need to change every year and will be distributed geospatially based on the statistical likelihood you will catch a specific strain based on where you live.
In my new line of work as a biotech programmer I’ve been injesting a constant stream of information about the various research efforts, including both treatments and vaccines. We have CDC rapid-autopsy Covid-19 samples in the lab. We’re working with the government and major industry research companies such as Moderna that are the collective focal point of scientists from all over the world. I’ve even been in contact with a sentinel, the eighth person in the world to receive an mRNA vaccine, and her testimony was so inspiring it gifted me a song and led me haphazardly to this moment.
Therein lies my optimism. The same connectedness that gives us the gift of family and friends and makes us so vulnerable to SARS-Cov-2 will ultimately be the lever that resigns it to history. There has never been a more coordinated research and development effort uniting science, industry and government. The whole world wants this to be over. And we have never before had the tools to succeed that we do today, from the cloud computing infrastructure we all take for granted to antiviral drugs and right down to the instrument I work on, which visualizes and quantifies RNA and protein molecules in tissue samples so researchers run experiments and better understand the enemy within.
In summary, I’m hopeful about what lies ahead. Certainly there is more to endure in front of us, a steeple chase of pain points, and millions of people are going to have their lives radically altered or tragically cut short as the virus ripples through society and has its way with us. The USA as ground zero due to the Trump administration’s neglect and catastrophic incompetence, brought home by his base in a historically unprecedented culture of ignorance. Ultimately they will reap what they have sown, as history will burn them in effigy even as we are still mourning the loss of our loved ones.
However, given all the progress and the amazing response of the medical and communities it stands to reason that there will be more than one vaccine available by next year, even as additional remedies to alleviate symptoms become available and trickle down through our economic caste system. The poor and disadvantaged among us will continue to be hit the hardest, so no change there.
As for the economy, the cynic in me who hates late-stage capitalism and the very notion of paying for health care will state categorically that economies are inevitable. You shouldn’t worry about the economy. Stay focused on your own person financial position. Even if the global banking system collapses in on itself (dear Sweet Meteor of Death) there will always be means & measures of trade. Thus the economy. If an iPhone in 2022 costs you 100 chickens, so be it. Raise some chickens and get connected like back in the day when we could hug our friends.
So the final word is yes. I’m optimistic. We have reason to be, and we have our work cut out for us. We are witness to unprecedented times, a turning point in the history of the planet and the dawn of a new epoch.
The old adage is may you live in interesting times. My addendum is with arms wide open. And I’m sharing my optimism with you.
The stormtroopers are there by executive order of Donald Trump. Drunk on power with itchy trigger fingers and moral corrosion, Trump’s private army is inciting war with the citizens of Portland. Every eyewitness account I’ve read from the protests in Portland says the same thing. Every video I’ve watched from the streets, including live broadcasts, backs them up.
It’s the federales that are escalating. They’re deliberately provoking and attacking protesters and journalists, falsely blaming them for the escalations and arresting them. Murmurs and bogus social media pages blame Antifa for the escalation, a convenient boogeyman.
Paramilitary forces with no identification have even snatched people off the streets and taken them to secret detainment locations, a signature move of authoritarian regimes and fascist dictators.
If the protesters were demanding retribution for the toppling of racist Confederate monuments they would have Trump’s blessing and constant praise on Twitter. But they’re protesting for racist, militarized US police to treat black suspects just like everybody else. In Trump’s world that’s tantamount to treason.
If you’re Trump and your dad marched with the KKK, if you took out a full-page ad calling for the execution of innocent black teenagers for a Central Park rape they did not commit, if you think black people all come from “shithole countries”, a protest for justice and fair treatment for black citizens at the hands of law enforcement is a euphemism for riot.
If Trump wants a war he’s getting one. He’ll lose, and the revolution will be televised. On loop, ad nauseum, a cautionary tale.
Trump and everyone associated with him will be regarded by history for what they are. Every sycophantic politician in his kakistocracy and every ignorant supporter in his clown parade gullible and stupid enough to rally behind a fascist dictator has established a permanent record on social media and the internet at large that shows their true colors.
Not red, white and blue. No doubt that’s how they see themselves, so tone deaf they can’t discriminate between patriotism and blind loyalty. More like the green and brown camouflage on the fatigues of Trump’s secret police. The colors of a traitor. The colors of war.
I thought we hit peak villain this week with Trump’s eagerness to sacrifice your children by sending them to school this fall even as the country buckles under record breaking case counts, day after day. I can only wonder what the hell is wrong with that man, what twisted his brain into thorns.
Every American dystopia deserves a good villain, and the Confederate cape crowd, anti-vaxxers & anti-maskers (the Republican party) are still convinced it’s Bill Gates or George Soros, and that you’re sheeple.
Nope, just plain old Trump the clown villain. King of the kakistocracy. He’s like a fat, impotent Vader who blunts every attack with toddler logic, then flies around the room declaring victory, a modern Baron Harkonnen in a scalp toupee.
Indeed. You’d have to be an absolute monster to beat that.
However, deep in the heart of Florida where 1 in 3 people in Miami are infected, ICU’s are full and the case counts are a stairway to heaven, there has emerged another villain. I have always speculated the apocalypse will start in Florida and it seems to be upon us.
As in please come to Disney, we’re open. Bring us your children, overpay us at the gate, and enjoy a week at our resorts and theme park. It’s practically an American tradition, and we want you to know Florida is open for business.
Spend your day in the summer heat with thousands of other children, playing and sweating together, enjoying the same ride seats, eating in the same restaurants, using the same bathrooms and hugging the same lovable characters. And hugging each other, because Disney is and always has been a family affair. We like to spread it around.
Here at Disney nothing says villain better than killing off one of the parents in the opening scene. Maybe killing them both with a gruesome plague, write them out of the scene never to be seen again because they have to die alone in an ICU on a ventilator, but that would be John Wick levels of gratuitous cruelty.
We’re going for something more like Vader 2.0.
And although we can’t be thwarted in our commitment to villainy at Disney we need to keep it PG for the adorable children in the hotel room you’re all sharing. Look at what happened to Bambi, everybody loves Bambi & nobody wants to be reminded what happened. Marketing sent back a frowny face on the proposal, so maybe we’ll just kill off one parent. No reason to be cruel.
Besides honey, that would leave a huge plot hole, and we all have to fly home on Friday. We’d hate to leave you here to die alone. And don’t forget, the kids are starting school in just a few weeks. We need to go shopping, and Grandma will want to see them before they go back.
Have you heard from your mom lately? I hope she’s alright, the case the case counts are going back up you know. And we should probably plan a dinner with your sister and her kids before everybody gets too busy.
Coup de grace.
Yesterday’s Monsters post is here. It’s a long and winding call to arms to encourage you to keep your children home from school this fall given the risk of infection. And it’s a fair shot of spit and venom for Emperor Nero and his faithful clown parade.
It’s one thing for an adult to be stubborn, selfish and socially irresponsible in the context of a global pandemic. The ignorance and obstinance of Covid-19 deniers, anti-maskers and anti-vaxxers threatens all of us indiscriminately and ensures that the economy will not recover any time soon. But economies are inevitable, they will eventually recover, unlike the sacrificial lambs that comprise our daily mortality statistic as a talking point.
The first wave hasn’t peaked yet. Three million Americans are infected, a quarter of the world’s cases, and we’re trending towards a mortality of 200,000 Americans by the November election. States that opened too early are now facing an economic and healthcare crisis exactly as predicted, forced to rollback as they set new case count records nearly every day.
All that even as Trump proclaims that 99% of cases are not serious. That is a dangerous claim that flies in the face of scientific consensus, grossly ignorant bordering on criminal. His hands are already so bloody they can never be washed. Now he’s rubbing them in your face.
This is the same guy who brought you a Democratic hoax, 15 cases soon to be zero, it will go away in April, windmill cancer, Revolutionary War airports, and an HIV vaccine that doesn’t exist. The guy who shut down Obama’s CDC pandemic response team and then blamed Obama, China, and would presumably blame Where’s Waldo if he could find him. No doubt turned over on a ventilator in an ICU by now.
That guy gets around but he likes to hide in plain sight, innocuous in a crowd just like your kids at Spring Break. Equally dangerous if not more. You can tell from the striped shirt he’s obviously Antifa, Trump’s favorite boogeyman, just like every other libtard sheeple and your punk kids if you’re a Democrat.
But the sad truth of the matter is that we are living in a kakistocracy. The ignorance and ineptitude of the Trump administration and the gullibility of his supporters is magnifying the cost of the pandemic in lives, dollars and American influence. It is robbing us of time, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.
We have lost all credibility on the world stage in six short months. We’re the poster child for ineptitude, suffering an ongoing national and humanitarian tragedy of historic proportions with with a president who does not seem to care about his constituents but takes every opportunity to proclaim the greatness of his response, lying openly, embarrassing himself. The US response was the worst in the world, so bad Europe has imposed travel restrictions on Americans.
How ironic. But irony is lost on fools.
After two weeks of breaking infection case count the Trump administration iced the cake by pulling out of the World Health Organization, proving once again they don’t care about Americans, or anybody else for that matter. They only care about the old boys club, NASDAQ and the propaganda news cycle. They care about confederate statues and using AR-15’s in the capitol dome to intimidate legislators into getting haircuts.
They claim to care about the Constitution but haven’t bothered to brush up, much less read about government authority in a pandemic. They claim to care about everybody except “antifa fascists” so “white lives matter” is not tone deaf to them. No more than wishing death upon libtard sheeple protesters in a Facebook Live stream, without a doubt the most repulsive display of moral rot I’ve seen so far, and that’s saying a lot.
They definitely don’t care about Bill Gates, George Soros, or Where’s Waldo, those three are the unholy trinity of a global conspiracy that Q has revealed to them while the rest of us were watching fake news and colluding with an elite international pedophile ring. Sheeple say “bah”, real men read Breitbart. And they definitely don’t care about some libtard kung flu that’s yet another Democratic hoax, much less wearing wearing a mask like a sissy. They saw a YouTube video you couldn’t possibly understand, so you better educate yourself and do some “research” too since you didn’t learn anything getting your liberal arts degree from a treasonous professor.
To date we have tested 39 million people, roughly 10% of the population, the worst per capita of any developed country. Of those tested 9% were positive, 3.4 million people. We can only speculate what the case rate would be if we could test everybody but statistically we’re likely looking at over 30 million cases.
In a stunning display of toddler logic Trump continues to assert that if we don’t test so much we won’t have as many cases. That’s like saying if you don’t get a pregnancy test you can never get pregnant. If you don’t count your drinks you can never get drunk.
For the ammosexuals with great haircuts in the crowd waving around the Confederate flag, that’s like saying if you don’t count your bullets you’ll never run out of ammo. I’ll say that real slow while you get to blazing, Rambo, but please do us all a favor and save one for yourself. Better make that two in case you miss, or can’t count any better than Trump.
Yet true to his convictions Trump has repeated himself and doubled down. He is seeking to reduce federal funding for testing for states that are crumbling under the weight of the infections. Somehow the Republican clown car just honks & keeps driving around the circus. Puts up a few nooses, makes their slave-raping Confederate forefathers proud.
The whole party is a shameful and degenerate expression of callous indifference, profound ignorance and abject racism. Trump is their messiah. They’re anti-science just like him because they have faith in God instead, and you would be too if you weren’t a commie atheist.
Despite the ongoing tragedy of the mishandled pandemic response, continued obstruction by administration officials, dissemination of misinformation and propaganda, we have yet to round the most dangerous corner on the road to our new American dystopia. Never to be outdone and because there is no bottom, Trump has a map and his trusty sharpy, pointing the way for all the blind sheeple. Super Duper Missile daddy has a plan, the best plan, and it’s right up there in his temples underneath his Baron Harkonnen scalp toupee and the festering scabs that hold it onto his glistening skin
As you might expect from such auspicious problem solving (he really has a knock for epidemiology and is the best pathologist anyone’s ever met according to some people, but you never hear about it on the fake news), it’s an evil plan. Truly untempered madness. And as a society we have an obligation to do everything in our power to stop him.
That’s because the next milestone on the map of suffering and woe is not targeting the constituents he despises, foreigners, Muslims or his political opponents. And it doesn’t take aim at his best friends and mentors Putin & Kim because he’s more terrified of them than #blm protestors and doesn’t want to risk offending them, or even getting a frowny face from them on MSNBC.
Instead he’s offering up your children for sacrifice in a Machiavellian gambit. To what end, I cannot fathom. You’d have to be evil I suppose. But fresh on the heels of proclaiming Covid-19 as 99% insignificant Trump has now proclaimed schools must be open in the fall. Anything less will be considered national failure, yet another source of shame, and no doubt intrepid educator extraordinaire Betsy Devos agrees with him.
Showing his allegiance to the very fine people in the Confederate flag / lynching crowd that helped elect him, at a very minimum foreign exchange students must attend campus in person or be deported, holding up a fine Republican tradition of treating immigrants like shit, because they all come from shithole countries, they’re criminals and rapists and have AIDS (apparently they didn’t get the memo about the HIV vaccine that doesn’t exist).
The evil madness of the plan is that with the continued rise in Covid-19 infection rates it is a statistical certainty that many of the children forced to attend schools that should not even be open at all will both become infected and transmit it to their friends, families and teachers and neighborhoods.
It’s inevitable, it’s not matter of if it happens, it’s a matter of how much, how fast, and how long until it becomes unbearable. So the calculus of risk for US school children and their families has fallen under the purvey of a Covid-19 deniar who still, to this day, has failed to marshall the will & direct the resources we as a nation need for recovery.
Trump’s willingness to send your children into the toxic cesspool of a high density closed enclosure with hundreds of unwashed hands, unworn masks, supplies that get passed around and vending machines that are automated petri dish dispensers is not surprising. Given Trump’s cold indifference to children separated from their parents locked in overcrowded cages under deplorable conditions, including a lack of medical care and both physical and sexual abuse, in hindsight we should have expected it. But none of us can match emperor Nero’s talent for cruel depravity so we failed to see it coming.
Well, it’s here. Full stop.
As a parent I urge you not to subject your children to being exposed to a disease that has long term complications that are potentially painful and disabling. It can lead to systemic organ damage, and can result in blood clotting, strokes and lasting neurological damage for those who survive a severe infection. And that says nothing about the mortality of the worst cases. The reality for that population is dying alone, turned over on on a ventilator in an ICU after experiencing incalculable suffering. With no funeral.
You can’t factor any of those risks into some kind of coherent threat model. That’s a fine approach for soldiers and early vaccine recipients, it works great for investment banking, and battlefield triage. But we’re talking about our children. And you, and the rest of your family.
Once one family member is infected the writing’s on the wall. Imagine the devastation your child would experience if they transmitted it to a parent and the parent did not survive, but the child did. It’s the same devastation you’d feel if you gave it to your child, but they’re going to have a long life with that kind of burden, as well the emotional and economic suffering that comes with such a trauma at a formative age.
None of us would want that for any student, with the notable exception of Trump. One asymptomatic student can infect the entire classroom, and each of their peers can go home and infect their families, their neighborhoods, the grocery stores, playgrounds and cafeterias. School cafeterias are right up there with retirement homes and cruise ships as potential vectors of infection. So is breathing hard and shouting and singing, more commonly known among people that are not evil or dead inside as as a fun recess. Maybe gym class for a few twisted individuals.
To what end is this Trumpian experiment? What is the fundamental hypothesis he is trying to prove? That he’s in charge and unqualified? That he’s indifferent to the suffering of children. Maybe that he’s an idiot, the unchallenged king of kakistocracy who thinks he’s smart and surrounds himself with uneducated, ignorant, and cruel people that think he’s smart, too.
We know all of that to be true. The only experiments that we should be doing right now are the ones on a path to vaccines and treatments. The entire biotech industry and their partners in government and education are on a war footing, trying to do something that has never been done before in such a short time. But science takes time. Fundamental research, developing theories, performing experiments, engineering & manufacturing solutions and conducting trials with them all takes time.
These are all hard and fast limits. Production and distribution can be scaled up but the science and engineering needs to be conclusive before any of that can happen. And until a vaccine is widely available, by decree of Trump, your children are going to the frontlines of the pandemic to be part of a future case study on Covid-19 rates of infection in children and the network effect on their families and social graph. A post-mortem, so to speak.
Post on Facebook all you want but if he gets his way, the best protest you can do is to keep your kids home. Commit to home-schooling and distance-learning next year. You’re probably already doing that anyway, and getting pretty good at it by now. You’ve been doing it for a semester. Some of you really like it, and it always lifts my spirits reading about your home-schooling adventures in my news feed. And the parents can always use a refresher unless they’ve been doing trigonometry since the day they graduated high school.
Keep them home, do whatever it takes. Find a way. At least investigate it with the intent to succeed. Split duties with your spouse and extended family, be creative and let them know you’re going to do whatever you can to keep them home so they can enjoy the rest of their summer without the fear of being a subject in a pointless, cruel experiment. They’ve been robbed enough already. Nobody who’s a parent of young children right now grew up in a global pandemic, this is unprecedented for all of us.
Let them be a child this year. We can’t imagine what it’s like for them, being a teenager already sucked and your parents were already dorks and now they’re staying home binge watching Netflix, fighting for the remote and trying to get ahold of a human at the unemployment office. Their social life has been compressed into Zoom & Facetime meetings. Some of them have had to spend time in line at food banks wondering if they were going to go hungry and the most unfortunate among them have already lost family to a menace none of us can comprehend.
Rest assured, your kids are smart. They may even be smarter than you. Regardless, they know what’s going on even if they’re not discussing it with you. Remember, they think you’re a dork. But we all have phones, we all read the same news feeds every day. You can’t get away from it when the global pandemic continues to rage and surge through our daily news cycle.
It’s a monster for the ages, a whisper in the winds from China that covered the world in both directions and seems to grow more vast every day. A tidal wave of scary information and bad news, from intubations to mass graves to unemployment lines and civil unrest.
Save them from the monster. You don’t need to put them in front of it by decree of Trump, or any other man who would be king. Scoop them up and let them feel safe. They deserve at least that much. Even if you can’t protect them from getting the infection they will know you did what you could. It’s very hard to feel safe right now even for the adults in the room. The world needs a hero and every family needs a champion. You’re on deck, soldier.
Your kids will find reassurance in your plans and take comfort in your commitment to their safety and continued education. Your entire family will. And then give them a reason to feel some optimism. Let them know you’re not the only one trying to help them, that there is an army of scientists and engineers working around the clock to create a vaccine and develop treatments for those already infected.
Brush up on your biology. Follow the science as it progresses over the next year to keep infusing them with optimism and a better understanding for both of you as to how society is trying to help them.
Take advantage of the opportunity. Make up for lost time and a broken education system by teaching them about history, racism and civics. If they’re able to do arithmetic and simple algebra start teaching them to program. All science is computer science now and it will be good for both of you to learn new skills and create projects together. You’ll have a blast and share pride in your accomplishments.
Let them come to you with electives that you will both enjoy learning. Encourage them to race ahead in topics they show aptitude for without being held back by the rest of the class. Make music part of your curriculum. The whole family will enjoy it and you will all grow closer through shared experiences in the tradition of gathering around a piano at home, where everybody feels safe and loved.
Finally, demonstrate your resilience by example and teach them to be the same way while they are still impressionable. Rebel against this draconian mandate and show them your cards. Teach them to fish, proverbially or literally. When was the last time you went fishing? You deserve to go fishing. And it might be a good skill to have if the pandemic brings resource shortages to your dinner table.
Because at the end of the day it it really is about them. And you. And monsters.
Nothing’s going to change until police start policing themselves.
The few bad apples theory has burned down in the riots. We should be seeing reports of police being arrested every day for assaulting peaceful protesters. We’re not, even though the evidence is right there on Facebook. Videos of police instigating violence and brutalizing protestors. Every day.
This has been going on my entire life. I don’t see any reason to believe it’s going to change. In Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan ignores evidence of their crimes even as the Seattle Police Department is still under the heel of the US Department of Justice for racist policing and excessive use of force. Governor Jay Inslee demurred and opted out of the discussion, saying the excessive use of force was a policing decision.
With leadership like that, nothing is going to change. You can protest all day long, you can riot and scream bloody murder. The blue shield is a moral rationalization used by people with absolute power over the electorate. Police make life-or-death decisions every day even though the are poorly informed, ignorant of the law and morally compromised.
I don’t care if it’s less than 1% of police that are committing these crimes. They’re doing it in view of the people they are supposed to be protecting, and the other 99% let them get away with it. How many police have arrested other police despite the preponderance of evidence streaming through my newsfeed?
The change has to come from within. The world needs a hero. We need police to do their job when it comes to other police. Until they do nothing will change.
Stop with the All Lives Matter. That’s pure whataboutism, somewhere between deflection and gaslighting.
It’s like saying what about abortion. What about starving children in Africa. What about victims of abuse. What about abandoned puppies. What about the economy, spending on NASA or the military.
What you’re really saying is what about me.
Unarmed, innocent white people are not getting choked out and ruthlessly executed in slow motion on Facebook Live as they beg for mercy, plead for breath, their last breath and cry out for their mother. Murdered by a sociopathic cop who literally keeps his hand in his pocket and shows no signs of compassion or remorse or even any concern about being filmed live in the act as pedestrians begged him to stop.
It’s been going on my entire life, and for generations before.
In fact armed white people with the stated intent of disrupting government and issuing direct threats of civil uprising, encouraged by Trump, are allowed to walk around the capitol steps in Lansing & threaten legislators wearing bullet-proof vests with their AR-15s from the balcony. They even get to take a selfie. Because virus. And haircut. And white.
It’s not about you. It’s about us. At one point in our ancient history roughly 70,000 years ago the entire species of homo sapiens was reduced to less than 5,000 thousand people. Estimates of breeding pairs are as low as 40.
What happened was a super volcano called Toba, in Sumatra, popped off and sent 2800 cubic kilometers of ash and debris into the sky. That’s 2,800 Mt St. Helens worth of volcano. Death from above. It “dimmed the sun for six years, disrupted seasonal rains, choked off streams and scattered whole cubic miles of hot ash across acres and acres of plants”.
It triggered the next Ice Age. Which we survived.
It also delivered to our genome evolutionary changes that improved people’s chance of surviving and reproducing. Examples included resistance to one of Africa’s great scourges, the virus causing Lassa fever; partial resistance to other diseases, such as malaria, among some African populations; changes in skin pigmentation and development of hair follicles among Asians, and the evolution of lighter skin and blue eyes in northern Europe.
Your increased cranial capacity over our ancient ancestors is likely because of a virus. Your brain got so big your cerebral cortex is fighting for space with your wisdom teeth. There is some evidence to suggest it was a virus that affected gene MYH16, and some people never even develop wisdom teeth anymore. They’re a vestigial organ.
Every person alive today shares over 99% of the same DNA. And we are all descendants of those same tribes that survived the volcano and the viruses out of Africa.
Race is an artificial construct. We’re all the same species. We can breed together, and do. We’re all basically the same but different. All racial lines are blurry and the farther back you go the more blurry they become.
Racism however is a deliberately imposed belief system. And we live in a country with a history of brutal racism, a racist head of state, a kakistocracy that leads with “shit hole countries”, “the blacks”, and “fine people” on both sides of white supremacy.
Of course all lives matter. So do unborn babies and puppies. So do your feelings. But both historically and currently our society doesn’t treat us all with the same value. It’s a crime against humanity that’s been going on for centuries, particularly egregious in the USA. Check your white privilege at the door and support your black brothers and sisters. First and foremost.
We are all family, separated by a few hundred generations or less. But we don’t treat each other that way. So don’t inject yourself into the debate. Don’t diminish their suffering. Don’t make it about you. It’s about us.
If we’re having a dispute on Facebook about current events and you pull out a Fox News link to prove your point you can expect the following result:
A) I’ll watch 30 seconds to a minute of your link. I’ll fast forward to see if it actually presents any facts to support your argument. It won’t, but will double down on your argument in the absence of said facts. It’s basically Trump TV, no better than North Korean news.
B) I’ll win the argument. Because parroting what you heard on Fox News without presenting any verifiable facts only proves that you’re incapable of presenting a coherent argument. This is the point where you call me libtard, sheeple, covidiot and bot, because ad hominems are the province of an intellectually and morally compromised electorate.
C) You’ll think you won the argument, because you saw it on Fox News. Argument ad verecundiam is second only to ad hominem attacks proving you can’t present a coherent argument supported by observable and verifiable facts. And this point will be lost on you because irony is lost on fools.
D) I’ll give you a zesty send-off and lighten my load. Waste of time, waste of pixels. Sir Blocksalot says have a nice day without me.
Just had one of these arguments with a long-time acquaintance on Facebook. I presented a half-dozen articles backing up my position. She stated categorically she didn’t follow any of the links I posted, but gave me a link to a Fox News article that would have made Kim proud. And made Super Duper Missile Daddy proud, too.
She was openly racist but thinks she’s not. Her sister piled on as well, also openly racist and didn’t bother to follow any of the links during our polite disagreement. Total waste of my time. Racists think they’re not. Stupid people think they’re smart. Evil thinks it’s good.
It’s a post-American world. Nothing’s changed except that our proclivity for ignorance and bias is proudly on display. Proud Boys for lack of a better term. The Trump kakistocracy is a global and historic embarrassment with 100,000 body bags on its bloody hands, the highest unemployment since the Great Depression, and cities burning down due to racially incited violence. Meanwhile President Karen Bonespurs is hiding in his bunker sucking on his binky and parading around with a Bible, ordering tear gas, rubber bullets and flashbangs on peaceful protesters, but never once stepping foot into a church.
Waste of time, waste of pixels. History will burn them all
Last night I watched videos of Seattle Police Department officers trashing their own car, smashing the windows of a downtown business, and saw photographs of them pepper-spraying a small child.
Tonight I watched officers in DC arresting peaceful protesters after President Karen Bonespurs declared a 7PM curfew from the safety of his bunker, where he was hiding like the pathetic racist coward he is, blaming Antifa even though all the eyewitness reports fingered white nationalists.
Now I’m watching protesters in NYC peacefully protesting and singing but they seem to have forgotten Covid-19 is a thing. While their solidarity is encouraging, there is going to be a brutal cost. You will pay the piper, there is no getting around it.
Amazing how many stupid Trumpsters think it’s Antifa behind the arsons and violence. Just because he said so. Despite a preponderance of evidence and eyewitness reports calling out white nationalists as the accelerants and agent provocateurs. The same guy that brought you windmill cancer, Revolutionary War airports and logic like “If you don’t test there won’t be as many cases”. They are the most gullible, intellectually and morally compromised people in the country. And they think they’re smart and virtuous. They’re neither.
The actual death toll from the slow-motion murder of George Floyd on Facebook Live is going to number in the thousands if not more. Both cops and civilians. It’s a war now, in no uncertain terms.
“Fuck your curfew” – massive crowd of protesters in NYC.
If you’re a praying person now would be the time. We are at the cusp of civil war amid the worst pandemic in 100 years and the president is a clown in a charge of a kakistocracy that preys on racial fears and ignorance.
Things are going to get worse before they get better. Covid-19 has not going away, it’s going to become endemic, and racism has never been mitigated in my lifetime, and won’t. Not when 60 million white evangelicals and good old boys incapable of reading a cereal box support the orange clown.
We’re going to need another 100,000 body bags. At least.