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brooklynite's Journal
brooklynite's Journal
August 21, 2021

Jason Kander: What was going to happen in Afghanistan was obvious...

(The New Abnormal podcast)

Saying that Afghan Government could hold out for 18 months was still saying the fight against the Taliban was hopeless; soldiers and (more importantly) officers lost any will to continue fighting, and cut their own side deals.

American policy was built around saving face for the Afghan Government. If they looked like they could hold control, they had a hope for the future. Once US started to pull out, it looked like they no longer did.

August 21, 2021

The F.D.A. is aiming to give full approval to Pfizer's Covid vaccine on Monday.

Source: New York Times

The Food and Drug Administration is pushing to approve Pfizer-BioNTech’s two-dose Covid-19 vaccine on Monday, further expediting an earlier timeline for licensing the shot, according to people familiar with the agency’s planning.

Regulators were working to finish the process by Friday but were still working through a substantial amount of paperwork and negotiation with the company. The people familiar with the planning, who were not authorized to speak publicly about it, cautioned that the approval might slide beyond Monday if some components of the review need more time.

An F.D.A. spokeswoman declined to comment.

The agency had recently set an unofficial deadline for approval of around Labor Day.

Read more: https://www.nytimes.com/2021/08/20/us/politics/fda-pfizer-covid-vaccine-full-approval.html?campaign_id=60&emc=edit_na_20210820&instance_id=0&nl=breaking-news&ref=cta&regi_id=13550703&segment_id=66860&user_id=c58a2a6b957f0a552d45e1fd8aa3bdab

August 20, 2021

Soon to be Hurricane Henri heading straight fir Long Island...

A Storm Surge Watch is in effect for...
* South Shore of Long Island from East Rockaway Inlet to Montauk
* North Shore of Long Island from Kings Point to Montauk
* Flushing New York to Sagamore Beach Massachusetts
* Nantucket, Martha's Vineyard, and Block Island

A Hurricane Watch is in effect for...
* South Shore of Long Island from Fire Island Inlet to Montauk
* North Shore of Long Island from Port Jefferson Harbor to Montauk
* New Haven Connecticut to Sagamore Beach Massachusetts
* Nantucket, Martha's Vineyard, and Block Island

A Tropical Storm Watch is in effect for...
* West of Fire Island Inlet to East Rockaway Inlet New York
* West of Port Jefferson Harbor New York
* West of New Haven Connecticut

A Storm Surge Watch means there is a possibility of life-
threatening inundation, from rising water moving inland from the
coastline, in the indicated locations during the next 48 hours.
For a depiction of areas at risk, please see the National Weather
Service Storm Surge Watch/Warning Graphic, available at

A Hurricane Watch means that hurricane conditions are possible
within the watch area. A watch is typically issued 48 hours
before the anticipated first occurrence of tropical-storm-force
winds, conditions that make outside preparations difficult or

A Tropical Storm Watch means that tropical storm conditions are
possible within the watch area, generally within 48 hours.

Interests elsewhere in the northeastern U.S. and Atlantic Canada
should monitor the progress of Henri. Additional watches or
warnings will likely be required later today.

For storm information specific to your area, including possible
inland watches and warnings, please monitor products issued by your
local National Weather Service forecast office.


August 20, 2021

Took my 89-yo MIL to The Herbfarm last night for dinner.

You may express your disdain at your leisure.

(ALL ingredients in the meal—including salt, sugar, cooking fat and drinks — came from within 100 miles of the restaurant)

August 19, 2021

Texas House reaches quorum after Democrats blocked voting bill for weeks by leaving state

Source: Washington Post

The Texas House reached a quorum Thursday for the first time since July, clearing the way for new voting restrictions to pass after a record-breaking Democratic boycott had stalled the bill for weeks, creating a standoff with Republicans who sought the arrest of absent members.

Thursday’s session effectively ended the months-long Democratic protest over the voting measure — at least for now. To stop the bill from advancing, Democrats staged a walkout in May and a mass exodus to Washington in July, breaking the record for longest quorum break in Texas history and forcing Gov. Greg Abbott (R) to order a second special session.

The House had a quorum as of 6:13 p.m. local time after several more Democrats returned to the floor. House Speaker Dade Phelan (R) gaveled the session to order and welcomed one of the Democrats — Rep. Garnet Coleman — by name, inviting him to deliver the opening prayer.

The majority-Republican chamber quickly referred the voting-restrictions bill to committee, bringing the measure one step closer to passage. Abbott listed elections policy among the 17 issues to be addressed during the second special session, which can last up to 30 days.

Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/08/19/texas-house-quorum-voting-bill-democrats/
August 19, 2021

Kushner friend Ken Kurson charged in N.Y. eavesdropping case after Trump pardon

Source: Washington Post

NEW YORK — Ken Kurson, a close friend of former president Donald Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner, was charged Wednesday in a state eavesdropping and computer-trespass case months after receiving a federal pardon while facing similar harassment allegations.

The former New York Observer editor’s arrest marks what is likely the first instance of a local prosecutor pursuing state-level charges against a person after that individual was given a pass by Trump for the same alleged conduct that federal authorities had pursued. A president’s clemency grants apply only in federal cases.

“We will not accept presidential pardons as get-out-of-jail-free cards for the well-connected in New York,” Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance Jr. said in announcing Kurson’s arrest.

Vance’s office is investigating the Trump Organization and its executives. The former president’s company and its Chief Financial Officer Allen Weisselberg have been indicted in a wide-ranging tax fraud scheme. Kurson’s case is unrelated to that matter.

Read more: https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/ken-kurson-kushner-friend-charged-trump-pardon/2021/08/18/d670ef70-ffac-11eb-a664-4f6de3e17ff0_story.html
August 19, 2021

Taliban official rules out democracy in Afghanistan

Source: The Guardian

Waheedullah Hashimi, a spokesperson for the Taliban, told Reuters that the country was likely to be governed by a ruling Taliban council, while the Islamist militant movement’s supreme leader, Haibatullah Akhundzada, was expected to remain in overall charge, in a role akin to the president.

The power structure that Hashimi outlined would bear similarities to how Afghanistan was run the last time the Taliban were in power from 1996 to 2001. Then, supreme leader Mullah Omar remained in the shadows and left the day-to-day running of the country to a council.

Taliban leadership will meet later this week to discuss and set out the system of governance, but any semblance of democracy has already been ruled out.

“There will be no democratic system at all because it does not have any base in our country,” Hashimi said in an interview with Reuters. “We will not discuss what type of political system should we apply in Afghanistan because it is clear. It is sharia law and that is it.”

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/2021/aug/19/afghanistan-live-news-taliban-kabul-us-troops-joe-biden-afghan-crisis-latest-updates
August 19, 2021

Progressive group launches ReplaceJoeManchin.com

Source: The Journal

CHARLESTON — Whether U.S. Sen. Joe Manchin decides to run for a third six-year term in 2024 or retires sometime in the near future, a group of progressive activists are creating a framework in the hopes of replacing Manchin down the road.

WV Can’t Wait — a political group that united several Democrats, Republicans, Mountain Party members, libertarians and Independents to run for office in 2020 under a progressive platform – launched ReplaceJoeManchin.com on Tuesday morning.

The website, paid for by the WV Can’t Wait Action Committee, is a fundraising effort to support a candidate to challenge Manchin in 2024 or have a candidate ready should Manchin retire.

The fundraising campaign will also support slates of candidates that support WV Can’t Wait’s platform of pro-labor and anti-corporate donations; candidate recruiting and training for city, county, legislative, constitutional and federal elections; defending seats picked up in 2020 and 2021 by WV Can’t Wait candidates; and training for activists and community organizers.

Read more: https://www.journal-news.net/journal-news/progressive-group-launches-replacejoemanchin-com/article_ca94786c-338d-5d4d-8655-036a6d7aa33d.html

At least people will know what the Republican who beats their candidate stands for…
August 18, 2021

An observation: Seattle does not have walk-in instant COVID testing sites.

In NYC, I could walk to multiple storefront testing facilities without an appointment, and get an Antigen test result in 10 minutes, and PCR test results in 4-5 hours. Few options in Seattle and 12-24 hour turnaround.

August 18, 2021

Bill De Blasio's Universal Basic Income?

Through an outfit called ­Advance Peace, the city will offer a stipend of $1,000 per month (“transformational opportunities”) to “young men ­involved in lethal firearm ­offenses,” at the same time pairing them with “neighborhood change agents” — “credible messengers, meaning they bring life experience, conflict mediation and mentorship skills to the target population.”


You can argue that this is a productive way to deal with recidivism. But if you’re not going to provide the same benefit to non-violent offenders, much less to the working class poor who haven’t committed crimes, I don’t think you’re going to build a strong consensus among the tax paying public.

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Name: Chris Bastian
Gender: Male
Hometown: Brooklyn, NY
Home country: USA
Member since: 2002
Number of posts: 93,162

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