The Bishop and the Butterfly: Murder, Politics, and the End of the Jazz Age

    We Do not have a lot of Time

    There are very important issues separating different views of what we should be doing as a country to address the problems confronting our polity.

    But we don't have a lot of time to do that.

    Push forward and make a plan.
    Or wait to see what other quislings do.


    Some states haven't implemented social separation. What is the prevalence of Covid 19 there?


    Flavius, it is difficult to answer your question because of the shortage of testing capability.

    Consider this Table at WaPo comparing the increase of deaths in each State to the increase in the number of confirmed cases. Note the States where the death numbers are going up sharply while their increase of confirmed cases is small.
    You can't confirm what you cannot test.

    it's a start:

    Follow the lead of No-Drama Newsom, leader of the 5th largest economy of the world?

    Received this message on a shipment of ventilators from Governor @GavinNewsom and the people of California.

    Have faith – we will beat this if we all work together.

    — Governor Phil Murphy (@GovMurphy) April 9, 2020

    California's Pandemic UI kicks in this Sunday.

    Weekly UI benefits will jump to a minimum of $600 and a maximum of $1,050 until the end of July.

    What happens when UI pays better than half of all jobs?

    — Samuel Hammond (@hamandcheese) April 10, 2020

    California has entered into a new deal with consortium of nonprofits and manufacturers for delivery of 200M masks per month amid the coronavirus pandemic, Gov. Newsom says.

    — MSNBC (@MSNBC) April 8, 2020

    California Gov. Newsom issued stay-at-home order when the state had 675 cases. Gov. Cuomo waited until New York had more than 7,000 cases. From NYT:

    — Byron York (@ByronYork) April 8, 2020


    Gov. Gavin Newsom on Rep. Nunes saying it was “overkill” to close Calif. schools for year: “We’ll continue to listen to the experts and try to avoid some elected officials that frankly may not have the benefit of some of the insight that many of us do.”

    — The View (@TheView) April 3, 2020

    BREAKING NEWS: California currently is not seeing the double digit increases that were predicted in COVID 19 cases. 15865 infected, 2.1% increase day to day in ICU patients to 1108 patients statewide, per Gov Newsom

    — Liz Habib (@LizHabib) April 7, 2020

    #LIVE Asked about reports of President Trump urging NFL to start season on time at end of summer, Gov. Newsom responds: "I'm not anticipating that happening in California."

    — ABC7 Eyewitness News (@ABC7) April 4, 2020

    California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that a total of 7,000 hotel rooms around the state have been procured to house the state’s large homeless population

    — The Daily Beast (@thedailybeast) April 3, 2020

    Reporter: "Do see potential for a new progressive era... & whether there's opportunity for additionally progressive steps because of this crisis?"

    Gov. Newsom: "Absolutely we see this as an opportunity to reshape the way we do business & how we govern."

    — Liz Wheeler (@Liz_Wheeler) April 2, 2020

    that's just a sampling, there's plenty more, just plug "Gov. Newsom" into the search box on Twitter

    Obama warns group of mayors that the 'biggest mistake' is to 'misinform' during the pandemic

    .....The biggest mistake any [of] us can make in these situations is to misinform, particularly when we’re requiring people to make sacrifices and take actions that might not be their natural inclination," Obama said during a virtual meeting organized by Bloomberg Philanthropies.  The meeting included “participants from more than 300 cities around the world, including mayors, local leaders, and members of response teams,” according to a statement from the organization.  Obama also called on the leaders to build a reliable team of experts while addressing the pandemic.“The more smart people you have around you, and the less embarrassed you are to ask questions, the better your response is going to be,”....

    @ TheHill - 04/09/20 08:03 PM EDT

    "Speak the truth. Speak it clearly. Speak it with compassion. Speak it with empathy for what folks are going through," former President Obama said.

    — The Hill (@thehill) April 10, 2020


    Now that is what I am talking about.

    Or, Guild Navigators...


    Guild Navigator - Wikipedia


    wait, what??

    I recognize the reference to Dune and perhaps a reference to the glitch in all prognostication.
    But I am not fast and my knees hurt.
    What am I missing?

    I always felt that the Guild was a redux of the Hanseatic League, but without benefit of any particular data...


    ETA if Trump is not Baron Harkonnen, than the universe is out of joint...

    The League of City States is more like the Houses governed by the Emperor {through some kind of Magna Carta} than the Guild. The Guild has leverage over the Emperor (because they control shipping in the Hoffa style) but loses much of it when that is revealed (or announced) to the Houses. The Guild is more like moneyed interests whose control is limited by how much forward they can see and how little their influence is noticed by others. They have a lot of dough to throw this way or that but all such instruments have a horizon.

    Trump is not Baron Harkonnen. He is the cousin, Beast Rabban.
    The Baron is offstage at present.

    You two shure do talk putty.

    Should I stop?
    I can at any time.

    *moat pulls hard on the cigarette, causing it to spark and crackle in protest*

    Nothing like a discussion of Hanseatic rules and customs to set a plague right and in proper perspective. Ever since the Germans gave up the corridor, the Balts have been running wild, showing no self-control, and we now how livid that makes JR.

    It's OUR damn sea!

    I cede to your clearly superior knowledge, while offering this picture is support of the proposition that a few of those antigravity thingees that the Baron used to ameliorate his obscene obesity would come in hella handy for El Presidente...


    No photo description available.


    Also on point, the vestigial genitalia...

    It's called a "Mons", or "Le Mons" in France.

    Parenthetically , how tone deaf must one be, presenting thusly, to permit the approach of anyone carrying a camera?

    Hmmm. He reminds me more of Milo Minderbinder. 

    MM: "What's good for Milo Mindbender is good for the country."

    Rupert Pupkin



    "Speak the speech  I pray you, trippingly off the     etc etc etc 


    102 clinical trials started for treatments in just the last week:



    Folks, the government -- state or local -- can't order the economy to re-open. You have to convince people it's safe for them or their families. This is the missing element in this debate about the models. My column:

    — Jonah Goldberg (@JonahDispatch) April 10, 2020

    and see Obama a couple posts above: "The biggest mistake any [of] us can make in these situations is to misinform, particularly when we’re requiring people to make sacrifices and take actions that might not be their natural inclination,"

    Goldberg is absolutely correct.
    Compare that observation with Barr thinking out load that the lockdowns might be illegal and he is going to put his best people to work upon finding out.

    An example of strong central federal rule not necessarily being the answer with this crisis:


    I wouldn't call the Kleptocracy that is consuming the resources of Russia a "Federation"
    A Federation is a collective enterprise, not a Monarchy supported by rings of criminals.

    All logistics, on any level, can fail. Having no logistics is a failure of a different kind.

    NPR reports: In Reversal, Federal Support For Coronavirus Testing Sites Continues

    Dean and five other Pennsylvania members of Congress, including Republican Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick, signed a letter to Secretary of Health and Human Services Alex Azar asking him to reverse the decision.

    Good workaround. Now Congress needs to develop testing beyond the FEMA operation.


    edit to add: now please try to squeeze in some time to keep the USPS from totally crashing and burning tomorrow. I heard personal tales: things like paychecks and checks for health insurance premiums are disappearing across the country. I'm not talking their budget, I'm talking major short staff. Yeah it's starting in NYC, but y'all gonna get it too when the rest of em start calling in sick. You know what they do when they are overwhelmed: stash it in the back room never to be found again....

    Yeah, I have always been attuned to the culture of delivery in all its manifestations and the scene here in Brooklyn is showing a lot of stress for the USPS workers. They are doing their jobs while also saying aloud how it is an unsustainable situation.

    And I don't mean that in some metaphorical sense. I am talking town crier.

    In further workaround news:

    What remains unclear is whether this emerging plan can succeed without the backing of the federal government. Some states such as Massachusetts and Utah are already trying to implement parts of it. In the absence of federal leadership — as happened last month with stay-at-home orders — other states may watch and follow suit. But without substantial federal funding, states’ efforts will only go so far.

    Fukuyama advocating calling out National Guard for Nov. election, heh:

    Heck, I think call em out for all kinds of stuff!  They're handing out food bank stuff now in several states besides helping with the field hospitals..

    I like how using the National Guard is compared to having to hire people to deal with mail in ballots.
    Nobody has to pay for the National Guard to do stuff.

    The national guard isn't a standing army that gets paid a weekly/monthly/yearly salary. They get paid for 2 weeks of training a year and one weekend a month. If they are called up for additional duty they get paid for the additional time. It's not free.

    I meant to say that by not saying that.
    Perhaps irony is dead and we just have to accept that along with other conditions.

    ETA: But your observation is appreciated and better than me being satisfied that the snark was understood by all.

    As an often sarcastic person we've all had this experience.

    Maggie Haberman retweeted (just sayin because I don't want anyone to think I follow "Steve")

    Shall we take bets on it crashing? Crashed rollout is after all, a non-partisan problem-i.e., various state unemployment filing systems, Iowa Caucuses, Obamacare rollout....

    Phishing emails? Click here to get $$. Go to the dummy site, then it gives link to "your bank", signin at dummy fake bank, bingo they got your bank id and logon, they get your check?

    Yeah .Tom Peter's dealt with that in a book, maybe  " Pursuit of Excellence" .

    He compared 

    "Ready, ready, ready, ready....................................................Fire"


    "Do it, fix it"!

    Cuomo with the bad news about the limits of state power:

    but that's also the way he says "over to you, citizens, do your thing"

    The Governor association idea better kick in quickly because it is all dogs eat dog out there.

    rut roh. It do look like the less populated red states are at a disadvantage, no? And big blue states are still playing "you scratch my back, I'll scratch yours." I don't want to gloat

    Did watch Cuomo press conference today and noted he said every hospital adminstrator that asked for something now has what they need. And that there are actually open beds in places and that we haven't had to use the Javits Center or any field hospitals. I don't know if he was lying Trump style, of course. Several times in the past I heard him promise he is going to help in kind all those other Gov's and others he begged help from. We will start seeing soon if he will keep that promise.

    I  don't take any pleasure in the board game that has been made of it.
    I have family in Mississippi and Louisiana. 

    If there was a Federal response, oh wait, what am I saying?

    We have got to stop comparing the frantic effort to deal with stuff in a monolithic fashion. There are Federal efforts that are very helpful, done by people who understand and live by a code of public service.

    There are political agents who look at Government as some kind of game player app.

    If it was easy to identify one element against another, it would have been done before.

    times in the past I heard him promise he is going to help


    Don't get me started on legal weed....

    just a guy I know nothing about except that he often makes good points, making a good point on twitter on topic:

    Andrew Yang's twitter feed is a good place to go for "outside the box" inspiration, yet not pie-in-the-sky either. Not the least of which because he retweets users like "Nerds for Humanity"

    Lt. Gen. Honoré insisting upon the need for testing.

    It really is no brainer.

    He is like the ultimate Daddy and thank god for him.

    What I like about the interview is his resistance to being put in some kind of role.
    This is this and that is that.

    In other losing time news, the increase in testing capacity is not speeding up but slowing down.

    As Bump points out, it is not just the testing per se but factors making it possible that are involved.

    My Kingdom for a shipping clerk!

    Cohn makes some good observations about how different employers will have to return people to work under different circumstances.

    He is on board with Testing, testing, testing.

    Parental Warning: He does give Trump a blow job at the end.

    A PG blowjob or a XXX blowjob? Or am I still stuck in the 90s?

    You are stuck in 90's

    They are now delivered like a Kindle book.

    When I was a kid I heard the Congressmen turned the pages over. Are they handled digitally now? There's something to say for the oral tradition... then again, I seem to recall one of the Republican speakers was involved, don't know if he was at the head.

    the problem in a nutshell, tweeted by Zaid Jilani:

    Decisions about economic and health tradeoffs can be informed by experts but in a democratic society the decisions will be made by the public (namely their representatives in state and local government). There aren't objective decisions to be made about this, a public choice.

    10:00 PM - 15 Apr 2020

    [For some reason he has a lock on this tweet where one cannot get a link or embed code--something I've never seen before. Right now it's at the top of his feed, so I link to his feed.]

    Of course this is the traditional question about how to handle "authoritarian" requirements like a executing a major war or addressing a major public health crisis in democracies, the stuff of a lot of dystopian fiction even when the top leader is rational and cares about his citizens.

    just ran across these two others taking that general topic way off in another direction, maybe a fun diversion for you:

    Lenin would change his name to Putin, and he'd be actively compromising politicians and media figures so he wouldn't have to do a thing. Oh wait, that already happened. We never did interview Butina or Kilimnik or Deripaska.  We are such suckers. Now Trump's helping arrange an oil cartel for Vlad and MBS so the US makes less oil money - makes sense, right?

    What ever happened to cheeky MAGA?

    Turned into KAG2020: "Keep America Great" or "KGB And Gestapo"

    re: "make a plan". Evidence here that someone in NYC is trying to do that:

    @NYCMayor: If you can safely cycle thousands of people a day through a public market in Union Square, you can also safely operate public pools that are loaded with #Coronavirus-killing chlorine. It requires thoughtful management by @NYCParks + usual @NYPDnews security.

    — (((Adrian Benepe))) (@Adrian_Benepe) April 18, 2020

    Edit to add: believe it or not, my tax dollars actually being used to pay thoughtful employees! I am pleased, I don't expect miracles, I just expect like the old office signs used to say THIMK!


    I love academia and want it to continue to exist.

    In previous generations, the need for its continuance was accepted as something all sides could agree upon.

    To make it a policy option now is not only cynical but deeply odd. The only place to argue for different views depends upon such institutions.

    this posting is not necessarily endorsement of everything therein, just sharing thought provocation I found on topic:

    I thought at least once was the best most important thing Elon Musk had done was pop-up automated Gigafactories - to make whatever. There likely is hype and exaggeration, but then there was a pop-up hospital the Chinese built. It leaked, it was unsanitary, it was awful, but it was a great first try. The Indians did another soon after, perhaps a bit better. Elin's Hyperloop is being attempted in Europe. It may not be exactly what he wrote, but the certainty that city subways require huge amounts of city land, a half a trillion in expense, 1 1/2 decades to build, is giving way as our only option, that maybe we can be fleeter of foot and build something our British brethren of the early 1800s *didn't* envision and largely do already. Our educational system is still almost wholly based on early dindustrial age needs and methods and goals. WaitButHow notes cavemen dropped here would be amazed by everything except our slow same way of speaking and communicating knowledge - where are the Star Trek beams of person-to-person info at 10x our speaking or reading efficiency? Someone on LinkedIn bemoaning our "socialism" with the bailouts, as if the last century's concerns about socialism wasn the killing and imprisoning people in the name of helping them, and that socialism didn't seem to offer an actual mechanism for increased buy-in and productivity and happiness even as the free stuff rolled in - that we needed the pain to move forward in that BF Skinner thinking. Bucky Fuller noted web often progress at 90 degrees to our goals, such as our internet coming out of military efforts rather than "let's build a really cool way for people to communicate" - it was more to help kill others and keep them from killing ourselves. I pointed out how little money in effect could subsidize $20k for every new car sold to make it electric, to actually make Al Gore's promise happen 25 years later, and we just spewed *much more* money out the window in some vast semi-bailout/semi-highway robbery that doesn't address global warming at all. Oops, more belt tightening and polar bear killing for another generation? Yes, will it become t endy on LinkedIn to actually do business to help people and society, rather than simply "monetizing" everything, as if that were the goal?

    And where is Ecology in this new ecosystem? What have we learned besides high priced Whole Foods?

    (en Francais, helas).

    Noah Smith op-ed:

    The irreplaceability of business was largely cemented in the 90s when even construction workers would check their portfolio perfoemance and pay down a mortgage.. Since then the right has done it's best to denigrate business by highlighting it's excesses, such as stealing thousands' homes through predatory housing practices, now stealing the data of millions and using it against them. Is it possible for the right to advocate business in a sustainable legal fashion, or is "pump and dump" as the only acceptable mode, with concurrent pain for the supposed group they wanted to recruit? If you drown government services (not coffers) in a bathtub and leave Jack the Rippers riving about, well, why even talk about a modern society? It's just the roving packs of bandits stage somewhere back in Europe 1100, pre-Enlightenment.

    George Packer on some of the broken things that need fixing that helped this happen:

    “When the virus came here,” George Packer writes, “it found a country with serious underlying conditions, and it exploited them ruthlessly.”

    — The Atlantic (@TheAtlantic) April 20, 2020

    Pandemic! by Slavoj Žižek review – the philosopher provides his solution

    As old orthodoxies melt into air, the world needs a very new form of communism, argues this instant response to the crisis

    Book review @, April 23

    This approach by Massachusetts should be done by all States.

    The States should then coordinate with each other to present the Federal government with a coherent means to use the supply chain resources that only the Federal government can organize.

    The Federal capacity to compel production and research needs lot of assistance given the condition of its present leadership.

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