Wednesday Open Thread

“All empty souls tend toward extreme opinions.”

–William Butler Yeats

43 Community Comments, Facebook Comments

  1. Duke Cox says:


    Yale psychiatrist Bandy Lee: Trump's "deadly" briefings display "anti-human" psychology


    "We are facing a democide of genocidal proportions, because we have handed power to someone who is anti-human in psychology," Lee told Salon. "The group he has isolated may not be ethnic, but it is his own cultural grouping of 'non-voters' or 'critics,' when he has withheld lifesaving equipment from states where governors have criticized him, such as New York, California, Washington or Michigan, while giving a surplus to states with sycophantic governors, such as Florida. When criminality combines with mental pathology, this kind of large-scale violence becomes possible. Eventually, it will be destructive to all."

    We have to find a way to stop this sick, unstable, sociopath.



    • The realist says:

      Agree 1,000%, Duke. I am still stunned that so many people do not understand Trump's multiple mental illnesses, disorders, and pathologies. Psychologists and psychiatrists like Bandy Lee have been speaking out for years about the danger he presents but few listen – the cultists not at all, the Republicans in Congress not at all, and actually many Democrats don't get it either.

      I do believe mixed in with his malignant narcissism, sociopathy (or perhaps psychopathy), and paranoia, there is a high degree of sadism. He secretly (or not so secretly) likes watching people suffer. And frankly I'm not sure he cares who suffers (his cult followers vs. the rest of us) as long as it's not him. 

      The 25th Amendment is worthless because he has surrounded himself with sick people who for reasons beyond understanding, are happily "going down with the ship."


    • Diogenesdemar says:

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      • MADCO says:

        the funny … so many levels… it burns.

      • JohnInDenver says: had this to say

        The International Society of Antimicrobial Chemotherapy, which publishes the IJAA, finally issued a statement a few days ago addressing the criticism. Verdict: They now agree that the French study, which ignited international interest in hydroxychloroquine as a potential miracle drug, didn’t meet its “standard.”

        ISAC shares the concerns regarding the above article published recently in the International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents (IJAA). The ISAC Board believes the article does not meet the Society’s expected standard, especially relating to the lack of better explanations of the inclusion criteria and the triage of patients to ensure patient safety…

        Although ISAC recognises it is important to help the scientific community by publishing new data fast, this cannot be at the cost of reducing scientific scrutiny and best practices. Both Editors in Chief of our journals (IJAA and Journal of Global Antimicrobial Resistance) are in full agreement.

        No harm done, I suppose. Just a public furor led by the president of the United States resulting in a drug shortage and possible side effects to untold numbers of Americans now taking the drug as a prophylaxis against COVID-19.

        There was another (very) small study of hydroxychloroquine from France published recently. This one wasn’t as encouraging:

        First up is this study from France. It’s another very small one, and all the usual warnings apply because of that. It’s from a team at the University of Paris and Saint-Louis Hospital there, and they evaluated 11 consecutive patients admitted there with the same course of treatment as the Marseilles group first reported (hydroxychloroquine 600mg/day and azithromycin, 500mg the first day and 250 mg/day thereafter). The mean age of their patients was 58.7 years, and (notably) 8 of the 11 had significant comorbidities (two obese, 5 with various forms of cancer, one with HIV). That’s a tough population, and unfortunately, the HCQ/AZ combination did nothing. One patient died (and two others went on to the ICU) and of the ten remaining, 8 were still positive for the virus by nasal swab on days 5/6 after treatment. One patient had to discontinue therapy on day 4 because of QT prolongation, a known side effect of hydroxychloroquine that can lead to fatal heart arrhythmia.

        So while this is a small study and not a perfect match, it provides no evidence to show that the HCQ/AZ combination had any benefit at all.

  2. kickshot says:

    Lee is the lead author of
    The Dangerous Case of Donald Trump: 37 Psychiatrists and Mental Health Experts Assess a President – Updated and Expanded with New Essays

    Which, in the original version published shortly after Dump lost the popular vote but won the EC, diagnosed his malignant narcissism


  3. DavidThi808 says:

    The hit to small businesses

    Understand that while there was a lot of talk about getting money out by the next pay period, pay accrues every day worked. A company may not need to pay employees until the 15th, but work today does need to be paid then.

    So every day there are lay-offs. Already we've had horrendous numbers of small businesses that have laid off everyone. Some have shut their doors while others are open with the owner working. A lot more have laid off substantial numbers of their employees.

    And then for most of the remaining ones, they're trying to get through without layoffs, but every day large numbers don't see a road to survival and are cutting and cutting deep. And the fundamental rule of layoffs is over cut. People will generally be ok with one round of layoffs. But a second round and everyone looks for a new (safer) place to work.

    And these companies are at best heavily damaged. At worst, they'll never re-open. Because when things improve, it will be uneven and people who just barely survived will be slow to rehire.

    And the vast majority of those rehires will be new people because everyone is not going to go back to their old job. Especially when many of those jobs are not back yet. It takes time to find & hire people. It takes time to train them.

    Recovery without their old employees will be slow & painful

    Who Needs It?

    There are some very easy ones. Restaurants, dry cleaning, nail salons, clothing stores. They're all dead now. And there are a small number of ones that are doing better, IT support companies, delivery services, etc.

    But there are also a lot of companies, like mine, where we don't know. And not only won't I know for a month or two, but if it's a short V recession, we may have 2 – 6 terribly months as the economy recovers because companies focused on getting back up to speed will not be focused on our software.

    Fast or Fraud Free?

    You also have the basic conundrum of do you want to get money out quickly, or do you want to avoid fraud? Pick one. And as it's already too late for way too many companies. the better choice for all of us is fast and accept that there will be fraud, some of which we will never catch.

    FDR had two main people he put in charge of spending money to get out of the recession. Harry Hopkins who would spend tens of millions in his first day on a program and got money out there fast. And there was fraud.

    And Harold Ickes who proudly boasted at the end of his carreer that there were no instances of any significant fraud in the programs he ran. But they took years to get up and running.

    Half of the Economy

    Small businesses are half of the economy. If they are not helped through, in a way where they retain most of their employees, the economic impact on all of us will be huge. 

    • ParkHill says:

      I appreciate your perspective on small business. I’ve had to shut down my (very) small business, but it did provide me with 1/4 of my income. I think we’re going to lose 1/2 the restaurants and shops in main-street America. 

      Traditional Republican supply side solutions and beggar-the-poor won’t do shit to fix things. Business owners don’t need tax breaks, they need customers.

      The demand side has collapsed, which will send a tsunami up the “supply” chain: workers lose their job, they stop buying at local retailers, stores shut down, rent is not paid, mortgages are not paid, investors & bankers have a bunch of real estate they can’t do anything with. Small-time rental owners are in the same boat.

      The ONLY thing that will keep the tsunami from hitting the other shore is expanded benefits at the bottom of the chain: SNAP, unemployment, stimulus checks, instant Obamacare, etc. Red states without Obamacare and restrictive social safety nets will be hit worse. 

      • DavidThi808 says:

        Help to individuals is key. But it's not sufficient. While everyone is quarantined, even if they have their pay fully covered, is still not going to a restaurant, to a dry cleaner, to a hair salon.

        And having all those places lose all their employees and having to start over on hiring – that'll be a giant long term hit. As you said, businesses need customers. And while they can't get them, a way to stay whole.

        And while we could design this wonderful system that covers the costs of staying "in business" covering fixed costs & salaries but not variable costs that don't occur due to reduced or no business – people need help this week. And a detailed system can't operate that quickly.

    • itlduso says:

      Oh, so many platitudes about small business (which includes all businesses under 500 employees for the PPP loan — do you consider them to be "small"?)

      You admit that many companies like yours don't even know if they will be negatively affected.  I have clients like mortgage refinancers, title companies, etc. who are doing better than ever.  I pointed out that you might receive perhaps $35,000 of tax free income to you personally from this program.  More power to you.  My point is that Congress is throwing taxpayer money indiscriminately without any provision to clawback amounts given to companies that come through this crisis without any problems.  And, you will be left with that huge amount of tax-free money in your pocket while we pile up the national debt.  As a CPA, I advise my clients to take advantage of every legal tax benefit, including this one.  But, I will be donating my share to food banks who are helping those who didn't get the free money thrown around by Congress.

      • notaskinnycook says:

        If we see any of it, it'll be going to food banks and other charities that helped people get through this.

      • DavidThi808 says:

        I’m fine with clawbacks. And if I do end up ahead of the game with all this, I’ll invest it in hiring additional people at my company, so still a benefit to the economy.

        What’s critical is to do this now. Every day more and more small businesses are going out of business, many never to re-open. And many facing a long slow road to recovery.

        And yes, I’m scared because instead of taking the safe route and laying a lot of people off – I’m betting my company will get through this making enough during this crisis. And if I’m wrong I’ve pissed away everything I’ve saved.

        And you’re (itlduso) a dick.

        • itlduso says:

          So, you promise to take the huge tax-free income and “invest it” in hiring more people if you end up ahead of the game. 

          What are you, a Communist?  After this is over, you’re just going to hire new people even if you have no new work for them to do?  Much more likely is that you’ll keep your tax-free income.  Then, you’ll assess whether you need more employees and will hire them only if you think you can make a profit from them, just like always.  Your promise is as hollow as Bloomberg’s. 

          I’m being interviewed by the Wall Street Journal about this and you’re giving me great material.

          And you’re a whiny little bitch.

          • kwtree says:

            Hey! It’s been 14 days! Itlduso is a hypocrite, decrying the (assumed)  weak moral character of everyone who does the same thing he is doing ( gettin some gubmint $$), while assuring us that only he has the smarts and integrity to do it properly.

            And if it walks like a dick, and talks like a dick….

            • Voyageur says:

              Now, now, flightless bird.  If you go on shrieking at itlduso, you’ll undercut your claim that everybody likes you except for that damned RepealandReplace, a jihad which in itself belies your claim that everybody follows your lead except for that damn voyaguer.

              How many exceptions to the rule can you claim?  Isn’t it time to admit that people c an disagree with you without being hypocrites or monsters?

              And if your dick walks and talks, then how can you claim to be a feminist icon?
              Have you considered entering your walking, talking, dick in American Idol?

              • itlduso says:

                That's okay, V.  Mama's just cranky because Bernie lost and she can't argue that it wasn't fair and square.  She's so flustered that now she's arguing that business owners should be allowed to keep huge tax benefits even if their business wasn't negatively affected by the crisis.  Let's give her some time to gather her bearings.

                • kwtree says:

                  Venenoso still sucks at mind reading, not that that will stop him from proclaiming his vast and superior knowledge of what others believe, and misrepresenting what they write.

                  Malice and spite is all he knows, stinging gadfly that he is. It’s kind of sad that he sees this blog as his personal popularity contest. Who knew that it isn’t a political discussion forum?

                  I argued nothing, itlduso, except that you are a hypocrite for criticizing other business owners for doing the same thing you’re doing. 

                  I’ve made my arguments about Bernie Sanders. He wasn’t the candidate I supported for President, but he has had and will continue to have  a positive impact on America and on the Democratic Party. 

    • MichaelBowman says:

      Colorado hemp producers are being told today USDA is prohibiting their participation in any of their Rural Development programs because "the state has failed to file a plan".  The state is in the process of developing the plan required under the new law, but we're not required to file it this year (nor are 20+ other states).  Under 2018 Farm Bill legislation states are allowed to operate under the 2014 rules for the 2020 crop year at their discretion.  Every CO farmer planting hemp in 2020 is in full compliance with federal law without this action. 

      This is preposterous. 


  4. ParkHill says:

    RE: the latest Democratic Primary news:

    “Is everybody fucking happy, now?”

  5. Diogenesdemar says:

    One of the many songs I’ve been listening to again for the first time . . . 


  6. MichaelBowman says:

    Who wants to break the news to Cadet Bone Spurs that the biggest-ever fraud operation was by a 2018 Republican in North Carolina?

    “People voting… For whatever reason…. Doesn’t work out well for Republicans”

    He said the quiet part out loud again.


  7. MichaelBowman says:

    Touching story on one of our Wray natives who succumbed to COVID-19.  Marty was a life-long resident of Yuma County, born and raised on a farm on the Arikaree River below Beecher Island.  Her husband Dick was a long-time high school math teacher, coach, and then bus driver after his retirement.  They were everything you'd imagine a couple like that might be.  RIP Marty. 

    Colorado family watches loved one’s funeral over FaceTime

    • Duke Cox says:

      My condolences, Michael. That we die alone from this, only adds to the tragedy.


      • MichaelBowman says:

        From Garrison Keeler: 

        “It’s an easy life compared to what many people are going through and skipping the news lets you ignore a president who, as the British writer Nate White points out, “has no class, no charm, no coolness, no credibility, no compassion, no wit, no warmth, no wisdom, no subtlety, no sensitivity, no self-awareness, no humility, no honor and no grace” and now, in a national crisis, shows himself to be an ignorant  bumbler and con artist focused on weeding out non-yes-men in the White House.

        The Founders never considered this. They provided for impeachment for high crimes and misdemeanors but not for blinkered stupidity. So we must depend on the heroes in our midst, the hospital workers and truck drivers and grocery clerks and crucial employees, the people the Queen thanked in her speech, to get us through the next few weeks or months until, God help us, the rate of infection declines and life can resume.

        Our country is in trouble and it lacks coherent leadership and this obligates us to extend ourselves to each other. Love your neighbor. Gather your family close. Prepare for hard times ahead. Pledge allegiance to each other. This country is so much better than it appears these days. Now is the time to come to its aid, before it sinks.”


  8. MADCO says:

    Pro life

    pro vax
    pro C19 quarantine
    pro asylum
    anti death penalty


  9. harrydoby says:

    Trump responds to revelations that his trade adviser warned in January of the coronavirus

    In January, Trump’s trade adviser Peter Navarro wrote memos to the White House warning that the coronavirus could “imperil the lives of millions of Americans” and crater the economy. The New York Times and Axios on Monday reported on these previously unknown warnings by a top member of the Trump administration. Trump said Tuesday that he had not seen the memos.

    Obviously, not enough pictures to attract his attention.

    • MADCO says:

      lack of pics got nothing to do with it

      Despite his claims to the contrary, January was a month for watching tv 24/7 and obsessing on the latest hoax.

      No fake intel briefing, fake trade memo, fake IG report, fax new was going to get his attention.

  10. Duke Cox says: keeps turning it out….

    Trump's latest crime spree: With pandemic as cover, he's going for epic corruption

    Trump knows he's in trouble, and wants to fire everybody who might stop him looting the place before November


    On Tuesday, Trump removed another inspector general, Glenn Fine, who oversees the Defense Department. Fine was originally set to chair the committee that oversees how the $2 trillion in coronavirus relief funds will be disbursed. Trump would like to replace him with Jason Abend, a Customs and Border Protection official. This move, coupled with reports that Trump is appointing Brian Miller, one of his personal lawyers — who has publicly sneered at the idea that Congress should have the power to hold the executive branch accountable— as the special inspector general overseeing stimulus spending should make the president's intentions clear.

    As Democrats have warned, Trump clearly wants to treat the stimulus fund, which is supposed to mitigate the nation's economic collapse, as a slush fund for his rich supporters. One by one, he's eliminating anyone he perceives as an obstacle to that goal.



  11. Duke Cox says:

    Here is one from Kos.

    Playing the Republican victim card, grifter Loeffler says she’s liquidating her stocks

    The newest Republican senator, Georgia’s Kelly Loeffler, has proven to be a very fast learner when it comes to grifting in her new job. Loeffler, who is probably the single wealthiest member of the Senate, and her husband Jeff Sprecher, CEO of the company that owns the New York Stock Exchange, have traded millions’ worth of stocks starting Jan. 24, the very same day that she received a classified briefing on the threat posed by the novel coronavirus.

    Millions of dollars now made, Loeffler has announced she and her husband will sell off the remainder of their stock holdings. Not because she did anything wrong, she says, still maintaining what sure looks like fiction that she had absolutely no knowledge whatsoever about the trades that were made. She says she wants to avoid further controversy. And make herself the victim. Of course.


  12. Duke Cox says:

    "This sort of heavy-handed treatment of reporters and selected networks will likely increase. T***p is marching us toward totalitarianism." — May 23rd 2018

    hey…we are almost there.



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