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T and R, la58 for today’s OT, and to jcb for yesterday’s OT!!😊☮️👍



The Trump administration has tapped David Legates, an academic who has long questioned the scientific consensus that human activity is causing global warming, to help run the agency that produces much of the climate research funded by the U.S. government.

Legates, a University of Delaware professor who was forced out of his role as that state’s climatologist because of his controversial views, has taken a senior leadership role at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).

The agency, which oversees weather forecasting, climate research and fisheries, has until now continued its climate research and communications activities unfettered by political influence. For that, NOAA stands in stark contrast to the Environmental Protection Agency and science agencies at the Interior Department, where the Trump administration has dismissed and sidelined climate scientists or altered their work before publication.

The move to install Legates as the new deputy assistant secretary of Commerce for environmental observation and prediction, a position that would report directly to acting NOAA Administrator Neil Jacobs, is raising concerns in the science community that this could be a White House-orchestrated move to influence the agency’s scientific reports.


They are running out of names for this year’s season.
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So far, so good here, but we still have a few more weeks. Rubbing my lucky shamrock emoji! 🙂


Fingers crossed for ya


More JFC

The top communications official at the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) accused career government scientists of plotting against President Trump and told Trump supporters to arm themselves ahead of the November presidential election.

In a Facebook Live on Sunday, Michael Caputo said the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention was harboring a “resistance unit” to Trump, The New York Times reported.

The career scientists “haven’t gotten out of their sweatpants except for meetings at coffee shops” to plot “how they’re going to attack Donald Trump,” Caputo said, according to the Times. “There are scientists who work for this government who do not want America to get well, not until after Joe Biden is president.”

According to the Times, Caputo also warned Trump’s followers to be prepared for an armed insurrection when Democratic nominee Joe Biden refuses to concede the election.

“When Donald Trump refuses to stand down at the inauguration, the shooting will begin,” Caputo said. “If you carry guns, buy ammunition, ladies and gentlemen, because it’s going to be hard to get.”


And one more. Looking for a second source to be sure.


Are the republicans waiting for the master negotiator to cry uncle?🤔

GOP sees pressure on Pelosi as key to pandemic relief deal.

Senate Republicans see putting pressure on Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) as the key to getting a deal on a coronavirus relief bill before the elections and are counting on vulnerable House Democrats to move the Speaker off her demand for a package costing more than $2 trillion.

GOP lawmakers say last week’s procedural vote to advance a $500 billion to $700 billion relief plan — which all but one Republican senator supported and all Democrats opposed — was designed to give political cover to their vulnerable incumbents and put House Democrats on the defensive.

A Republican senator familiar with party strategy said the focus of last week’s vote was Pelosi, much more than Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.), who doesn’t have to worry much about protecting vulnerable colleagues.

“The question is does this force Pelosi to listen to her 20 members in districts where the Chamber of Commerce has endorsed the Democrat,” said the lawmaker.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce circulated a memo earlier this month stating its intention to endorse 23 first-term House Democrats.

“Schumer’s not pressured at all. This is all on Pelosi. Pelosi’s running the show,” the senator added, noting that 117 House Democrats signed a letter to Pelosi last month asking her to take up the Worker Relief and Security Act.

Pelosi on Friday afternoon said she remains optimistic about getting a deal, despite growing skepticism among other lawmakers.

“I’m completely optimistic,” she insisted in an interview with CNN’s Wolf Blitzer. “I’m optimistic. I do think we should have an agreement, that’s what we all want.”


Biden spending/revenue plan (broadbrush) Image courtesy of WSJ. Based on a Wharton model. I don’t know how Wharton got the details, it may be all bits and pieces.

Biden Spending Plan based Penn Model Screenshot 2020-09-14 114845.jpg

Advocates for lowering drug prices in the United States are raising alarm over an executive order issued by President Donald Trump on Sunday that the White House purports would challenge the nation’s pharmaceutical industry but which critics say is just an election year ploy to make it look like the president is finally following through on a 2016 campaign promise he has neglected throughout his term.

The executive order itself would require that the secretary of Health and Human Services to “immediately” explore implementing a payment model for Medicare to pay “no more than the most-favored-nation price,” which means the lowest price paid in other developed countries, for specific “high-cost” prescription medicines. While Trump celebrated the order as a far-reaching game-changer, experts said the move will likely have any little if any meaningful impact.

“The proposed executive order would appear to be of limited immediate effect,” reported the Wall Street Journal. “Experts see the order as the administration’s effort to show it is taking steps to lower drug pricing, as the president seeks reelection. Drug-pricing experts say that the best way to lower prices under Medicare is to grant the agency the legal authority to directly negotiate prices with drug companies. This measure wouldn’t do that.”

While much of the reporting on Trump’s order focused on how “controversial” the bill was due to its cold reception by the powerful drug industry, Peter Maybarduk, director of the global access to medicines program at Public Citizen, was critical of the order precisely because Big Pharma will likely walk all over it by voicing the kind of challenges it issued upon Trump’s announcement on Sunday.


TY, lala❣️


A group of some of the most revered and longest-active environmentalists issued a dire warning to the next generation of activists on Monday: Don’t vote for the Green Party this year. And don’t sit out the election either.

The warning, coming in the form of a letter signed by more than 170 top environmental leaders, is an explicit recognition that third-party voting—including from within their own community—has tipped presidential elections in the past. It’s also a plea to those who remain on the fence about Joe Biden, or who believe that they should cast a protest vote for someone else, that the stakes are simply too high.

“Angry right-wing voters and liberal absentees put Trump in the White House in 2016,” the letter reads. “In 2020 the same unholy team could keep him there. Progressives who vote for the Green Party candidate, or write in Henry David Thoreau, or refuse to vote at all for lack of an ideal choice will give Donald Trump precisely what he wants, and enough such pious gestures will produce catastrophic results.”

But the former VP has not gone as far as other Democrats, including those he ran against in the primary. He has called the Green New Deal—an ambitious, disruptive overhaul of the nation’s economy—a framework for what he wants to do. But he has notably stopped short of endorsing its text. And, more recently, he has publicly declared his opposition to an outright ban on fracking.

Those positions have fed far-left distrust of his candidacy. As has the larger perception that he is a political accommodationist, who would be more likely to cut a deal for a moderate climate bill than hold out for something that matches the severity of the current crisis—one that has been underscored by raging wildfires out West and twin hurricanes recently hitting the Gulf Coast.

Monday’s letter doesn’t try to paint Biden as some sort of revolutionary on this front. Instead, it praises his time as vice president and applauds his plans to arrest the damage to the environment currently taking place, all while acknowledging that there will remain work to do.

Ultimately, the letter’s signatories argue, elections like these are binary. And while the choice is between two candidates, it’s also between tactical visions. The question, in essence, is does the environmental movement want to be banging at the door of government for the next four years or does it want to have a seat at the table.

“You get them elected,” said Hayes, “and then you pound the hell out of them.”


said democrats in every election for eons.

These people could be sitting on Biden’s doorstep with demands instead.

For decades now, it’s been a life or death situation and has resulted in an even worse world.


WOW! The Daily Beast is quite the “click bait” site.


To the extent that Michael Caputo was known in political circles, he was recognized as a notorious Republican political operative and a Roger Stone protégé. Nevertheless, earlier this year the White House tapped Caputo, who had no meaningful background in health care or science, for a leadership role at the Department of Health and Human Services.

And now we’re getting a closer look at the consequences of this personnel decision. Politico reported:

The health department’s politically appointed communications aides have demanded the right to review and seek changes to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s weekly scientific reports charting the progress of the coronavirus pandemic, in what officials characterized as an attempt to intimidate the reports’ authors and water down their communications to health professionals.

The report noted emails to CDC leadership in which members of Team Trump complained about evidence-based data that contradicted Donald Trump’s political message, leading to politically inspired edits of official reports.

According to Politico’s account, Caputo and his team “tried to halt the release” of some politically inconvenient HHS reports, and in another instance, Caputo and his deputies sought to “retroactively change agency reports” they didn’t like, even after they’d already been issued.

Of particular interest are the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Reports, which Politico noted are “authored by career scientists and serve as the main vehicle for the agency to inform doctors, researchers and the general public about how Covid-19 is spreading and who is at risk.” It’s these same reports that Caputo and his operation have reportedly tried to change in order to bring them in line with the president’s rhetoric, reality be damned.


In a July interview with Biden foreign policy advisor Anthony Blinken, The Wall Street Journal’s Walter Russell Mead was told of the campaign’s plan to “tame China, Russia and woke Democrats” using “Cold War-era Democratic policy”, including “a liberal multilateralism — supplemented when absolutely necessary by the American military and a willingness to use it.”

“A Biden administration won’t be looking for a reset, a grand bargain, or anything more than a businesslike relationship with Vladimir Putin,” Mead wrote after the interview. “Democrats haven’t been this hawkish on Russia since the Kennedy administration.”
“While China’s rise and Russia’s turn to the dark side complicate foreign policy, the ideas and institutions of the liberal internationalist order are failing not because the world is fundamentally changing but because the global liberal system has been starved of a critical ingredient in the Trump years: American support,” Mead writes.

Again, these are the positions that Biden Incorporated is campaigning on. Because war is a horrific evil which people naturally abhor, US presidents reliably campaign as doves and govern as hawks; Trump did it, Obama did it, even Bush did it. Biden has paid occasional lip service to the need to end the “forever wars”, including in the aforementioned Stars and Stripes interview, but overall he’s been campaigning for his first term far closer to the militaristic end of the spectrum than any president in recent memory.


There’s a reason that all living cheerleaders for every “intervention” since at least 9/11 are endorsing Joe Biden today.




Trump campaign changes strategy in mail-in ballot lawsuit against New Jersey

The Trump campaign has filed new arguments in its lawsuit to stop New Jersey from having a mostly mail-in election this November, but did nothing to hasten the lawsuit’s conclusion.

The campaign late Friday filed an amended complaint against the state, claiming a law New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy signed late last month violates the U.S. Constitution and federal statutes pertaining to Election Day.

“[The law] conflicts with those statutes because it (1) allows votes to be canvassed starting 10 days before Election Day and (2) allows mail-in votes to be cast after Election Day,” the amended complaint states.

The law directs local election officials to count ballots that are received for up to a week after Election Day, as long as they’re postmarked by Election Day, Nov. 3. If the ballots are not postmarked, officials can count them if they’ve received them within two days of Nov 3.

When the Trump campaign initially filed the lawsuit, one of its major arguments was that New Jersey’s Constitution only allows the state Legislature — not the governor — to determine how election are administered. That argument went out the window when the Democrat-controlled Legislature passed and the governor signed a bill, NJ A4475 (20R), that wrote the Murphy’s executive order into law and expanded on it.


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