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Thanks obf! Some music to celebrate the landing. David Bowie again!

Don midwest
Don midwest

there is too much going on

The recent leak of conversations in the Lava Jato corruption case, which sent former president Lula da Silva to jail, has revealed a shocking degree of collusion with US authorities. Lula’s arrest, celebrated by the prosecutors as “a gift from the CIA”, helped pave the way for the rise of far-right Jair Bolsonaro and the subsequent wrecking of Brazil’s economy and evisceration of its democracy.


most will never know that we impose terrible, cruel people around the world on countries that hate them.

and we do it so well that a portion think they are wonderful. because that’s what all kinds of media tell them.

i have very little left in concrete actions to turn this around. it’s an all encompassing, uber wealthy, uber politically powerful movement.

Aint Supposed to Die A Natural Death
Aint Supposed to Die A Natural Death

I agree. Look what they’ve done to Haiti, of course with the collusion of a few corrupt individuals in the country. It’s why we need such massive military spending and bases in countries all over the world.

Don midwest
Don midwest

word I just learned

I added the bold

Egregore (also spelled egregor; from French égrégore, from Ancient Greek egrḗgoros ‘wakeful’) is an occult concept representing a distinct non-physical entity that arises from a collective group of people. Historically, the concept referred to angelic beings, or watchers, and the specific rituals and practices associated with them, namely within Enochian traditions.[1]

More contemporarily, the concept has referred to a psychic manifestation, or thoughtform, occurring when any group shares a common motivation—being made up of, and influencing, the thoughts of the group. The symbiotic relationship between an egregore and its group has been compared to the more recent, non-occult concepts of the corporation (as a juridical person or legal entity) and the meme.

corporation as Egregore

Here is a young philosopher with strong trends to the mythical

an article he wrote in 2011 about Occupy Wall Street

Corporations are egregores (reflections on #Occupy protests)

heard on radio recently someone who said Neo Liberal econ died in 2008 with the crash

well, …


wonder if it’s the root of egregious.

Aint Supposed to Die A Natural Death
Aint Supposed to Die A Natural Death

Sounded interesting so I looked it up in Merriam Webster.

Did You Know?
Egregious derives from the Latin word egregius, meaning “distinguished” or “eminent.” In its earliest English uses, egregious was a compliment to someone who had a remarkably good quality that placed him or her eminently above others. That’s how English philosopher and theorist Thomas Hobbes used it in flattering a colleague when he remarked, “I am not so egregious a mathematician as you are.” Since Hobbes’ day, however, the meaning of the word has become noticeably less complimentary, possibly as a result of ironic use of its original sense.


ty. :o)


Not even the full extent

Life expectancy fell one year in the first six months of 2020 in the biggest drop since World War II as the country dealt with the coronavirus pandemic, according to a report released Thursday.

Initial data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) determined that the life expectancy fell from 78.8 years in 2019 to 77.8 years during the first half of 2020. Men saw a drop of 1.2 years to 75.1 years, while women saw a decrease of 0.9 years to 80.5 years amid the pandemic.

Black and Hispanic Americans experienced an even greater drop in life expectancy, as their communities have recorded a disproportionate number of COVID-19 cases and deaths.

Life expectancy for Black Americans fell 2.7 years to 72, and it dropped 1.9 years for Hispanic Americans to 79.9 years. Meanwhile, white Americans experienced a 0.8-year decrease to 78. The CDC’s initial data did not report the change in life expectancy among Asian or Native Americans.

The drop in life expectancy, which measures how long on average a baby born today can expect to live, shows the early impact of the coronavirus crisis in 2020. Last year was already confirmed to be the deadliest year in U.S. history, surpassing 3 million of all deaths in the country for the first time, according to The New York Times.

“What is really quite striking in these numbers is that they only reflect the first half of the year … I would expect that these numbers would only get worse,” Kirsten Bibbins-Domingo, a health equity researcher and dean at the University of California, San Francisco, said, according to The Associated Press.



An example from Florida

When Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) unveiled a “pop-up” clinic offering coveted coronavirus vaccines in an affluent, mostly White part of Manatee County, Fla., lawmakers on both sides of the aisle slammed the plan for excluding residents in the rest of the county.

But on Wednesday, the governor offered no apologies, warning that he could instead take the doses elsewhere.

“If Manatee County doesn’t like us doing this, then we are totally fine with putting this in counties that want it,” DeSantis said at a news conference. “We’re totally happy to do that.”

As wealthy individuals in Florida and around the country snap up a disproportionate number of vaccination appointments, critics say DeSantis’s plan for the “pop-up” clinic near Tampa is only bound to widen disparities.

Some jurisdictions have targeted Zip codes that were hit especially hard by the virus, but many in Manatee County fear DeSantis’s plan will do the opposite, benefiting an area that has been least affected by the pandemic — including a few of the individuals who worked with the governor.


This is notable because 1) de Blasio is rarely, (maybe never) so direct about the Governor from Hell.

2) Ron Kim was an early important endorsement for Andrew Yang.

3) New York City voters may be coming aware that only by defeating the snarling bully barking from Albany, can we ever be the City we want to be.

Andrew Yang has the strength and presence to stand up to the Bully.


David Sirota

Similarly, CNN and the New York Times are reporting on allegations that Cuomo made enraged threats against Kim, the Democratic lawmaker who chairs the New York assembly’s committee on ageing. And CNN reports that “threats were made against those who are considering a vote [for Kim’s legislation] to strip Cuomo of his emergency powers” after recent revelations of Cuomo withholding casualty information from government officials. (A senior Cuomo adviser has now released a statement denying those threats and questioning Kim’s credibility.)

Kim’s uncle died of presumed Covid-19 in a nursing home. He told the Daily Poster that the public must understand that the undercounting of nursing home deaths and the corporate immunity law are not two separate issues – they are part of one large scandal in which New York’s governor prioritized protecting his political sponsors rather than the public interest.

Noting that lawmakers were considering legislation in August to rescind corporate immunity, Kim said Cuomo’s moves to hide information deprived lawmakers of necessary information at precisely the time they could have reformed the law to hold nursing home companies accountable.

“If they shared all the data, we would have passed different policies,” Kim said. “We would have went in a different direction. We could have repealed legal immunity entirely. If we had the full data set, I think we had a much stronger argument to repeal.”

But the data was not forthcoming. It was hidden, which ended up serving the interests of the lobby group that dumped more than $2m into Cuomo’s political machine. That machine is now being deployed to vilify Kim, Biaggi and other Democrats who dare to demand answers about their constituents who were killed by Covid.

This burgeoning scandal and cover-up evokes memories of Nixon’s enemies list, and his infamous declaration that “when the president does it, that means that it is not illegal.”

Four decades later, the Biden justice department, state law enforcers and Albany legislators will now decide whether that same ideology of lawlessness and impunity will continue to extend not only to nursing home and hospital executives who have avoided consequences for a gruesome Covid death toll, but also to the state governor who helped them get away with it.


CNN has told Quomo that he cant interview his brother anymore on his show.


That would be quite a switch!


Charles Pierce

Remember back a year ago when Andrew Cuomo, the Democratic governor of New York, was on the teevee every day, being the national assistant principal on the subject of the pandemic? Cuomo even got a book deal out of it. He got a great run with that character, but his own arrogance has contrived circumstances that are conspiring to write him out of the script in a particularly ugly way. From CNN:

Describing an alleged exchange with the governor that has not been previously reported, Democratic Assemblyman Ron Kim told CNN that he received a call on his cell phone from the governor last week as he was bathing his children at home.

“Gov. Cuomo called me directly on Thursday to threaten my career if I did not cover up for Melissa [DeRosa] and what she said. He tried to pressure me to issue a statement, and it was a very traumatizing experience,” Kim said. Cuomo proceeded to tell the assemblyman that “we’re in this business together and we don’t cross certain lines and he said I hadn’t seen his wrath and that he can destroy me,” according to Kim.

No matter why he got his government to fudge the statistics on nursing home COVID deaths, it’s plain that, not unlike the previous president*, Cuomo simply thought he was smarter, and (especially) that he was tougher, than everyone else.

“No man has ever spoken to me like that in my entire life,” Kim said of his phone call with Cuomo. “At some point he tried to humiliate me, asking: ‘Are you a lawyer? I didn’t think so. You’re not a lawyer.’ It almost felt like in retrospect he was trying to bait me and anger me and say something inappropriate. I’m glad I didn’t.”

This was not an unreasonable suspicion, as we all know. However, it also functioned to hang a lot of Democratic state politicians out to dry, which, alas, is of a piece with the high-handed way Cuomo has treated his fellow Democrats ever since ascending to his father’s old job. Back when the pandemic began, Cuomo was granted emergency powers by the state legislature. In the wake of these revelations, the state legislature is in full revolt.

In 2011, a rump faction of Democratic legislators formed something called the Independent Democratic Conference. They allied with Republicans in the state senate and enabled Cuomo to ignore the establishment Democrats in the legislature and, with the support of the IDC, get pretty much anything he wanted passed. Regular Democrats fumed, but the situation didn’t change until 2018, when five members of the IDC, including the group’s founder, lost Democratic primary elections. (Biaggi, quoted above, was the one who eliminated Jeff Klein, the IDC’s founder.) Those five allied with the Democratic regulars and the IDC went out of business. Cuomo suddenly was faced with a new political reality and now, he’s run headlong into it. His career is in ashes at the moment. Whether it can rise again is a long shot bet.


good for him. takes guts


Hello friends, management deemed mid 20s as warmer and made us go in despite the blackouts and road conditions. Its good to see the world waking up to Texas being a failed state, too bad they will forget by Saturday.


sorry you had to go in during this.

quite the skyline!


Maybe Ted Cruz can help out, now that he’s being shamed to return to Texas from a vacation in Cancun (Re: see Chris Coons on the Dem Side who had to go on vacation instead of working during Recess). Ted though made good use of police escorts to get to the airport while everyone else is getting stuck on the streets.

Sen. Ted Cruz will fly home from Cancun after fury over trip during Texas deep-freeze




Does this guy take responsibility for anything? He wouldn’t even stand up for his wife when cult -45 call her ugly


He’s part lizard had to go where it was warm


lizards and turtles everywhere are rising up and shaking off these yokes of slander. :O)



One of the first MTV videos…I am also old enough to remember this one!


Me too


And they’ll also forget that the R politicians caused this by kowtowing to big oil and other craprate intrests. They’ll gladly vote the R next election no matter how many thousands of $ were caused to thier homes and i’ll bet not all had proper insurance for this.


Ridiculous! Stay safe & stay warm!


Was there power at work? heat???


Minimum wage helps blue states’ businesses

A longtime client of mine, a lifelong Republican, an ardent supporter of Donald Trump, said something very unusual to me the other day. He said: “I support a national $15-an-hour minimum wage.”

This comment kind of seemed out of character. My client runs a 100-person manufacturing firm. He is very conservative in his opinions. He hates “big government”. He opposes the regulations and spending supported by Democrats. He’s a good person, a smart business owner and a fair employer. He strongly feels he should be in charge of his employee’s wages, not “some bureaucrat in Washington”. He would not seem to be the kind of person that you would think supports a higher federal minimum wage.

So why does he? Is this some form of latent altruism? Is it because he wants more pay equality and better income distribution? No, those are not the main reasons. For him, a business owner, it’s all about competitiveness. A $15 per hour federal minimum wage would “simply level the playing field”, he says.

But what has been missed in all of these analysis is parity. We live in an enormous country with hundreds of millions of people. Up until now, the minimum wage issue has been delegated to the states. Which means that there’s been a growing disparity among wages paid. Companies located in Texas can pay their workers less and, thanks to those relative lower wages, the cost of living in those areas is also less. Thanks to Covid, cloud technology, changing workplaces and a newfound appreciation among many for a better work life balance, more companies and startups are tempted to gravitate to such places.

Unfortunately, this is a big problem for all those companies in all those states (California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois. Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Virginia and Washington DC.) that have passed legislation to increase their minimum wage to $15 an hour. According to the US Census Bureau, these states are home to 3.2m companies with employees, or approximately 41% of all the small businesses with employees in the country.

Is it fair that they must pay more for their employees when their American competitors in other states pay so much less? Do you blame these companies for outsourcing work to lower-cost countries just to stay in the game?

So maybe, just maybe, to fix that disadvantage, an increase in the federal minimum wage would actually be a good thing for those business owners. It will level the playing field. It will boost competitiveness. It will keep a lot of work in the United States and not overseas.

“Please,” my right-leaning client says. “Increase the federal minimum wage to $15 an hour. It will be a boost to my business.”


Not red states business?


President Biden has said repeatedly that he wants to create a path to citizenship for all of the 11 million undocumented immigrants in the United States.

But even as he prepares to push hard for the broadest possible overhaul of the nation’s immigration laws, he and his aides have started to signal openness to more targeted approaches that could win citizenship for smaller, discrete groups of undocumented immigrants. At a CNN town hall on Tuesday, he said such efforts would be acceptable “in the meantime.”

In a private phone call with activists on Wednesday, top immigration aides to Mr. Biden said they supported what they called a “multiple trains” strategy, which could target citizenship for “Dreamers,” the young immigrants brought into the country illegally as children; farm workers who have toiled for years in American fields; and others.

Smaller bills could move forward as the president tries to build support for the broader legislation, which is scheduled to be introduced on Thursday, according to two people who were on the call.

If he chooses to move step by step, Mr. Biden appears unlikely to anger the most powerful pro-immigration groups, which are embracing a more pragmatic strategy after spectacular defeats under Presidents George W. Bush and Barack Obama.

For more than two decades, activists have tried and failed to secure passage of a broad overhaul of the nation’s immigration laws that would create a path to citizenship for most undocumented immigrants, a faster path for Dreamers, expanded visa access for highly skilled workers and a new program for seasonal agricultural laborers.

They are betting that Mr. Biden will struggle even more than his predecessors did to win support from a Republican Party that became more anti-immigrant during the Trump administration.

While the activists are willing to let Mr. Biden try for a bipartisan deal this year, they have warned that they will not wait forever.

“We want 11 million people legalized. That is our North Star,” said Frank Sharry, the executive director of America’s Voice and a veteran of immigration wars in the nation’s capital for more than 30 years. “But we can’t come home empty-handed. We’re not going to adopt an all or nothing approach. We have to achieve a breakthrough.”


Probably needs elimination of filibuster to pass

The Biden administration formally rolled out its major immigration bill Thursday, introducing legislation that would give 11 million people a path to U.S. citizenship.

The bill, which will be shepherded by Rep. Linda Sanchez (D-Calif.) and Sen. Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), represents President Biden’s chance to deliver major changes to a system where both parties see a need for reform but are sharply divided on how to deliver it.

White House officials called the bill a chance to “reset and restart conversations on immigration reform,” labeling the bill as Biden’s “vision of what it takes to fix the system.”

But even with a Democratic-led Congress, passing an immigration bill will be a heavy lift given that Senate Democrats would need to secure 10 GOP votes to pass the bill through the regular legislative process.


The Senate Budget chairman should gather a bunch of testimonial videos and post them during the debate in a couple of weeks.


Bernie is senior but the article does not say what his position on this was.

SENIOR SENATE DEMOCRATS recently launched a rearguard attempt to regain power they’d lost in December but were repelled by new members of the Senate in an overlooked but potentially consequential internal caucus battle.

In December, Chris Murphy, the junior Democratic senator from Connecticut, pushed for and won a change to caucus rules that would strip power from the chairs of the most important committees. (Caucus rules can be amended by a majority vote of the caucus.) Then in January, senior Democrats attempted to delay the implementation of Murphy’s rules change and were unsuccessful. Multiple Senate sources, who spoke anonymously to be candid about internal politics, told The Intercept that the discussion was contentious.

Murphy’s success is part of a larger shift in power toward more recently elected Democrats in the caucus, reflecting the rise of members less yoked to the mythology of the Senate as a haven of deliberation and bipartisanship. New members of the party drove partial reform of the filibuster in 2013 and are now pushing to go further, arguing that Republicans are not and won’t ever be willing to be reasonable negotiating partners and that the filibuster should be completely eliminated.

UNDER THE PREVIOUS Democratic caucus rules, committee gavels were doled out by seniority, and those chairs then had first dibs on the most prized subcommittees as well — meaning that senior members could control the flow of legislation through the committee from beginning to end, or could chair a key policy committee, while also chairing the appropriations subcommittee that funded that policy area, giving them additional influence.

In December, Murphy and his colleagues argued that the double-dip of power was too much and proposed a rule that committee chairs couldn’t have their pick of select subcommittees until everyone else in the caucus had a shot. Senior members pushed back, led by Sens. Patrick Leahy, elected in Vermont in 1974 and serving as chair of the Appropriations Committee; Patty Murray, elected in Washington in 1992 and serving as chair of the Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee as well as holding a leadership position; Tom Carper, elected in Delaware in 2000 and serving as chair of the Committee on Environment and Public Works; and Jack Reed of Rhode Island, elected in 1996 and serving as chair of the Armed Services Committee.

Passions were high on both sides, said one person on the call. Again, the caucus sided with Murphy and the newer members of the Senate.

The votes were cast by secret ballot, but senators were told by leadership that the tally was “decisively” in favor of moving forward immediately with Murphy’s reform — a Senate version of the Confucian proverb that no one deserves a second bowl of rice until everyone has had a first.

The rules change and the effort behind it have a variety of implications beyond the shuffling of gavels. On the internal politics front, it suggests that Murphy’s cache among his colleagues is rising.


Democracy and good citizenship make a rare appearance in the Senate Democratic Caucus.


And on the Republican front

Senator Mitch McConnell’s colleagues may not have deep personal affection for their often distant and inscrutable leader, but there is considerable appreciation for how he has spared them from difficult votes while maintaining a laserlike focus on keeping the Senate majority.

His approach on Saturday at the conclusion of former President Donald J. Trump’s impeachment trial seemed aimed at doing just that. After voting to acquit Mr. Trump of inciting the Jan. 6 riot that invaded the Senate chamber, Mr. McConnell, Republican of Kentucky, began a fiery tirade, declaring him “practically and morally responsible” for the assault. In essence, Mr. McConnell said he found Mr. Trump guilty but not subject to impeachment as a private citizen.

The strategy appeared twofold: Don’t stoke a full-on revolt by Trump supporters the party needs by voting to convict, but demonstrate to anti-Trump Republicans — particularly big donors — that he recognized Mr. Trump’s failings and is beginning to steer the party in another direction.

But it did not exactly produce the desired result. Instead, it has drawn Mr. McConnell into a vicious feud with the former president, who lashed out at him on Tuesday as a “dour, sullen and unsmiling political hack,” and given new cause for Republican division that could spill into the midterm elections. And it has left some Republicans bewildered over Mr. McConnell’s strategy and others taking a harder line, saying the leader whose focus was always the next election had hurt the party’s 2022 prospects.

The miscalculation has left Mr. McConnell in an unusual place — on the defensive, with Mr. Trump pressing for his ouster, and no easy way to extricate himself from the political bind.


comment image?resize=807×807


he lays it out nicely


Probably paid for moving the Christopher Columbus statues from downtown to Little Italy or other neighborhoods.



Snow across the country has slowed—or stopped vaccine delivery. Once more in NYC, vaccine appointments are being cancelled. NYC has run out. Try again next week. All those venues the gov’t has been bragging about have closed for now.

In other gloomy news, yesterday Whole Foods had few to none fresh salad ingredients on the shelves. It’s snowing again with 3-6 inches today and the same tomorrow.

What a winter. This one will live in our memories.




Should’ve been one way ticket


In 2019, Julia Salazar became the first member of the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) to serve in New York’s state legislature and also the youngest woman elected in the history of the New York State Senate. In 2020, she won the Democratic primary and reelection to State Senate District 18 in landslides.

In office, Senator Salazar has championed tenants’ rights, criminal justice reform, women’s rights, and the decriminalization of sex work. She played a leading role in winning the strongest legislative protections for tenants in New York history.

She spoke to Jacobin’s Hadas Thier about how she and other progressive lawmakers have stood up to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s abuses of power and budget cuts and have fought for an agenda that benefits working-class New Yorkers.

Q: You’ve gone from the last couple of years of being the lone socialist in Albany to being part of a slate of socialists in Albany. What kind of difference does that make in terms of what is possible to win?

A: It is already giving me more hope and confidence in what we are able to win. We now have six democratic socialists in the Senate and the Assembly. I’m realistic about what this means in the context of a legislature of a little more than two hundred people. But it grows our ability to internally organize our colleagues.

And we represent more than just six people. Each of us respectively won, and collectively we won, with a mandate. So we’re not just going to Albany as six people. Collectively, the six of us represent something like a million New Yorkers. That is really powerful. I think that we have the opportunity to advocate for a socialist policy agenda, but also to bring more legislators on board to this policy agenda.

And then there are the things that are not as easy to quantify, but that are obviously really meaningful. We have the most socialists that we have had in the legislature in a century. It is historic that we have this many socialists in the state legislature. That is very meaningful for a socialist movement in the United States as a whole.