Wednesday, June 17, 2020

Corporate drive though coronavirus testing promised by President Trump is a failure

A federal COVID-19 drive-thru testing site in the parking lot of Walmart in North Lake, Ill., March 25 (AP Photo/Nam Y. Huh)
President Trump's plan to leave coronavirus testing to corporations with drive through testing didn't work out.
(CNN)As he was facing intense criticism for a lack of adequate testing, President Donald Trump announced in the Rose Garden in mid-March that the federal government would partner with private companies to set up drive-thru coronavirus testing sites.
He invited chief executives from Target, Walgreens, Walmart and CVS to the microphone and showered them with praise over the new effort. The President told attendees he envisioned consumers driving up, getting swabbed and having their samples sent off to the lab to be tested -- "without having to leave your car."
But the President's celebrated announcement hasn't come close to being fulfilled.
While these retailers have approximately 30,000 locations combined, the Department of Health and Human Services confirmed that there are only five locations from these major retailers that are currently offering drive-thru testing -- and none are open to the general public.

Tuesday, June 16, 2020

Trumpism, Covid-19, and the failure of U.S. government to keep its citizens safe

The nation with the world’s highest Coronavirus death toll — where the first wave hasn’t even plateaued or slowed yet — reopening already. Seeing new spikes across half its states. What the?

America is about to show the world what a worst-case scenario for Coronavirus looks like.

The Trump administration has bungled Coronavirus unbelievably badly. Drinking bleach, it turns out, isn’t a cure. But it’s about to get so, so much worse.

For more click here.

Editor's note:

Michael Lewis wrote about "the fifth risk" in his book with the same name, The Fifth Risk, which was published in 2018. The five risks to national well being and safety are nuclear accident, nuclear war, failure of energy innovation, failure of electrical grid, and governmental incompetence and mismanagement. Americans have arrived at the point of failed government because of their inability to elect competent executives to management their government.

The cult of personality has taken precedence over competence in their selection criteria and the consequences are devastating for the quality of U.S. national well being.

Monday, June 15, 2020

Rebellion against Trumpism in the United States influenced by a perfect storm.

George Floyd death: Curfews and clashes in US as protests rage ...

On June 14, 2020 Chris Hedges interviewed Glen Ford about the protests in American streets since the killing of George Floyd by police in Minneapolis. When Chris asked Glen Ford about his understanding of why the American people are rising up with this particular killing of a black citizen Ford stated that four social conditions have come together at the same time in a perfect storm: the Covid-19 pandemic, economic melt down, the Bernie Sanders presidential campaign giving people hope in the realization of progressive ideas, and the authoritarian, white supremicist Trump presidency.

The police action and military action to quell the protests is the beginning of a fascist police state in the United States. Whether in Hong Kong, South America, North Korea, China, Russia, the 1% using police and military power to maintain power under the guise of "law and order" is a common governmental strategy. Whether the Trumpists can continue their take over and maintain control of the governmental apparatus remains to be seen.

Sunday, June 14, 2020

Health care companies and trade organizations spent $308 million on lobbying the federal government representatives in 2019

Health care interests spent hundreds of millions of dollars - Sep ...

According to The Week magazine issue on February 2, 2020, on page 36 referring to a report on, sixty health-care companies and trade organizations spent collectively $308 million on federal lobying in 2019 up 9% from 2018. The $308 million includes $120 million from the pharmaceuticals trade group PhRMA to pay 450 lobbyists.

Trump administtation attempted to disenroll over 700,000 Americans from Food Stamps on 04/01/20 but was blocked by Federal Court injunction

On Friday, March 13, 2020, Federal Judge Beryl Howell granted a preliminary injunction on new rules that would raise the bar for able-bodied adults' SNAP benefits. Under the Trump administration proposed regulations over 700,000 Americans would have lost their food stamps.


Saturday, June 13, 2020

The 1033 LEA program giving surplus military equipment to police leads to more police violence.

Click to enlarge

In 1996, under the National Defense Authorization Act, President Clinton signed into law the expanded 1033 Program, which gave surplus military equipment to police deparments across the United States.

After 24 years having this military equipment has contributed to more police violence against American citizens.

This 1033 program has been referred to as "the militarization of police." Increasingly, citizens are calling for an end to this program and demilitarization of police departments.

For more click here.

What do Americans think about abortion?

From the Washington Post on 01/22/20

A majority of Americans (59 percent) said abortion should be legal in most or all cases, and about 7 in 10 said that Roe v. Wade should not be overturned, according to the survey conducted by the Kaiser Family Foundation. Those figures have remained relatively stable through decades of debates and protests. Likewise, the poll found the public overwhelmingly believes abortion should be legal if the patient’s life is endangered (82 percent) and in the case of rape or incest (80 percent). Seventy-nine percent believe the decision is best made by women themselves in consultation with their doctors, rather than by lawmakers.

Editor's note:

Attitudes and opinions vary between Blue and Red states. Republicans restirct abortion access while Democrats want the decision to be the pregnant woman's choice.

If Roe vs. Wade were overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court, the legality of abortion would then revert to each state. In New York State abortion is legal under state law and a reversal of Roe vs. Wade at the Federal level would not change that.

A woman's right to choose whether to continue a pregnancy would be a state's rights matter. Some states respect the women's rights to choose while some states deny her that right.

Friday, June 12, 2020

Does your state have a clean slate law? If not do you believe it should?

Clean Slate - Senator Sharif Street

Did you ever hear of the "clean slate law?"

About 1 out of 3 Americans has a criminal record which impacts many areas of their lives such as were they live, ability to get school loans, ability to get a job.

Pennsylvania enacted in 2018 that automatically seals any arrest record that does not lead to conviction if the person stays crime-free for ten years.

Should other states enact similar legislation? Before you vote this fall find out where your representatives stand on this issue.

For more click here.

Thursday, June 11, 2020

Does media collude with law enforcement to glorify police violence?

What's the Big Deal?: Dirty Harry (1971) - MTV

University of Oregon professor Carol Stabile writes in her article, "During Floyd protests, media industry reakons with long history or collaboration with law enforcement" on June 11. 2020 on The Conversation.

Periodically, Americans have been made aware of the one-sidedness of these media depictions of police conduct. In 1968, for example, the Kerner Commission explored the causes of uprisings in black communities. Its report noted that, within these communities, there was longstanding awareness that “the press has too long basked in a white world looking out of it, if at all, with white men’s eyes and white perspective.”
Changing that perspective requires more than recognizing the role police dramas have played as propaganda for law enforcement. It means reckoning with the legacy of stories that gloss over police misconduct and violence, which disproportionately affect people of color.
The TV shows "Cops" and "Live PD" have been canceled due to their glorification of police violence.

Media literacy requires that people not blindly rely on the internet for their news.

Is the first admendment protected on social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook, etc.

Yes, social media platforms are not publishers. They are not responsible for content, the poster is.

Does free speech protect libel and slander? Yes, when the person libeled and sladered is a public figure.

So, is President Trump and others able to tell lies and libel and slander people as they choose, yes.

That's why the internet has been called by legal media experts such as Ken White, "a sewer."

The internet should not be blindly depended on for any kind of facts and their interpretation.

Check your facts and delve into context for appropriate and legitimate interpretation.

To listen to the brief podcast on "Legal Talk Today" entitled "Trump vs. Twitter (again)" click here.

Wednesday, June 10, 2020

Good ideas for post Covid-19 social policy changes

One of the blessings of the Covid-19 pandemic is that it has more glaringly exposed the cracks in our social systems in the United States. This is the first of a series of articles naming these deficiencies.

By naming these deficiencies we can identify where policy improvements lie. Once they are identified this identification hopefully leads to enhanced public awareness, a change in public opinion supporting these improvements, positive changes in institutional functioning, and the election of governmental officials who are truly supported of social justice and the welfare of all. and

This first article is on changes in the health care system in the U.S.

  1. Expand federal funding for Medicaid.
  2. Medicare for all or some other sort of Universal Health Care for all Americans.
  3. Expanded hospital capacity to underserved areas.
  4. Paid sick leave and paid family medical leave for all employees - no exceptions.
  5. Free and accessible testing, treatment, and PPE.
  6. Full funding for Indian Health Service and Urban Indian Health Services.
  7. Barrier free access to mental health and substance abuse services.
  8. Emergency services for mental health and substance abuse services by behavioral health professionals instead of police
Before you vote, know where the candidate stands on these policy reforms.

For more click here.

Tuesday, June 9, 2020

U.S. adult reading habits

Old Man Reading A Book On A Deck Chair In The Park In Summer Stock ...

Percentage of U.S. fiction market accounted for by romance genre in 2016 = 23%
Annual value of romance novel industry = $1.08 billion
Percentage of U.S. American adults who have read at least one book in 2019 = 72%
Percentage of U.S. America adults who have read at least one print book in 2019 = 65%
Percentage of U.S. American adults who have read at least one ebook in 2019r = 25%
Percentage of U.S. American adults who have listened to at least one audiobook in 2019 = 20%

Monday, June 8, 2020

Right to vote slowly includes more groups of people.

All About Voting :: Voter Information :: Swarthmore College

As Americans we value and pride ourselves on our right to vote in elections and yet some people and groups actively work to suppress the vote when they fear that groups of people will vote for their opponents.

Americans have also become, under the Trump administration very anti immigrant. Here are some interesting facts which relate voting with immigrants:

Percentage of U.S. eligible voters who are naturalized immigrants in 2000 = 6.2%
Percentage of U.S. eligible voters who are naturalized immigrants in 2020 = 9.8%
Percentage increase in immigrant eligible voting population since 2000 = 93%
Percentage of increase in U.S. - born eligible voting population since 2000 = 18%
Share of immigrant eligible voters living in just five states: California, New York, New Jersey, Florida, Texas = 61%

The slogan Make America Great Again harkens back to a time when many Americans were not allowed to vote because of voter suppression of various groups such as women, African Americans, immigrants, non land owners, and felons.

By today's standards some argue, America was never great for large groups of people, but is becoming greater every year as be include more groups of people into the franchise.

Thursday, June 4, 2020

The United States is the only first world country on the planet using the death penalty

Why Texas' 'death penalty capital of the world' stopped executing ...

The United States is the only first world country with the death penalty.

The other countries in the world that use the death penalty are:

Countries With Death Penalty 2020
  • Bangladesh.
  • China.
  • Egypt.
  • Ethiopia.
  • India.
  • Indonesia.
  • Iran.
  • Japan.

Monday, June 1, 2020

NFL commissioner, Roger Goodell makes hypocritical statement

From The Week, 10 Things you need to know today, 05/31/20

Roger Goodell says 'tragic events' call for 'urgent need for ...

In response to the protests against police brutality that have swept across the United States, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said in a statement Saturday that "there remains an urgent need for action" following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis and that the "NFL family is greatly saddened by the tragic events across our country." Goodell added that "the protesters' reactions to these incidents reflect the pain, anger, and frustration that so many of us feel." Goodell's comments weren't particularly well-received, however, as people took to social media to point out that former San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick has remained out of the league for years following his non-violent protests of police brutality during the National Anthem. [ESPN,]

Editor's note:
It does little good when powerful white men spout pious platitudes while not having addressed urgently earlier complaints of injustice. Playing "ain't it awful" after the fact exemplifies hypocrisy. People should not support NFL football until the league addresses the issue of police brutality and racist policing in the U.S. especially when its players and teams discriminate against players who protest unjust treatment as Colin Kaepernick has done.