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Gender: Do not display
Hometown: PA
Home country: USA
Current location: DC
Member since: Mon Nov 10, 2003, 06:36 PM
Number of posts: 35,579

About Me

I was born in New York City, so was Trump. The only thing that makes people think I'm an H-1b stealing jobs from Americans is that my Grandparents immigrated from India, while Drumpf's immigrated from Germany. It's race, not citizenship. Americans are more diverse than you think. Millions of US citizens don't look the way you might expect. This fact is very important and will help us win elections.

Journal Archives

The most-vaccinated big counties in America are beating the worst of the coronavirus


Much has been made of the gap between more-vaccinated and less-vaccinated states or red counties and blue counties. The difference is even starker in big counties with overwhelming adoption of the vaccines.

About 1 in 420 Americans has died of covid-19, according to official data. And we’re still averaging more than 1,000 deaths per day.

But in certain areas — and indeed in many areas in which the population is much more tightly packed and the coronavirus could transmit more easily — the story is far less grim. A big reason: widespread vaccination. Death rates are far below the national average in the most-vaccinated, often-urban areas.

Much has been written about the yawning gap in outcomes between less-vaccinated and more-vaccinated areas, especially as deaths in less-vaccinated, red states significantly and increasingly outpace more-vaccinated, blue states. The Washington Post’s Philip Bump also reported this week that deaths in red counties are more than 50 percent higher than in blue counties.

But even that might undersell just how beneficial vaccination is in preventing the worst that the coronavirus has to offer — particularly when adopted on a grand scale in a given area.

From the start of the vaccination effort, a pertinent question has been when we might achieve something amounting to “herd immunity,” i.e. having enough people vaccinated to stomp out the virus. Guesstimates often pegged that number at 70 percent or above. That concept has proven elusive, particularly as the delta variant has rendered the vaccines less effective at preventing the spread — while still extremely effective at preventing hospitalizations and deaths.

Hospitalizations and deaths are high in some important swing states right now, but things might look better in the more vaccinated counties.
Posted by IronLionZion | Sat Dec 4, 2021, 04:08 PM (4 replies)

White House: We're Not Shutting Down The Economy

Posted by IronLionZion | Fri Dec 3, 2021, 11:41 AM (1 replies)

Let's talk about what Republicans get wrong about guns....

Posted by IronLionZion | Thu Dec 2, 2021, 02:49 PM (1 replies)

D.C. will no longer require masks in many public settings, Bowser announces


Washington’s local mask mandate, one of the strictest in the nation since late July, will relax greatly beginning Monday, Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D) announced Tuesday.

The District had required residents to wear masks in most indoor settings since the delta variant caused coronavirus case counts to rise over the summer. On Tuesday, Bowser said that coronavirus vaccines are working: While case rates remain stubbornly above an average of 10 new cases per day for every 100,000 residents, vaccines are preventing most people who catch the virus from needing hospitalization.

That means it’s time to let residents choose whether to wear masks in their office buildings, retail stores and many other settings, Bowser said. Local businesses can still choose to require masks, but it will not be legally required.

Local regulations will still require masks in some settings, including Metro trains and buses, ride-share cars, some government buildings and public schools.

Masks were comforting but I guess our numbers improved enough. That's a good sign. Vaccination rates shot up the last few months as mandates kicked in.

The nation's challenged roads, bridges, rails and ports: 10 projects showing the big-ticket needs


The highways built mid-century as an extensive interstate system are hampered these days by outdated road designs that contribute to crashes and congestion. The bridges that are essential connections within urban and rural areas often face costly repairs or replacement. Public transit systems haven’t kept up with growth or changing travel patterns, leaving Americans ever more dependent on cars to get around.

“Somewhere along the way, we stopped investing in ourselves, we stopped investing in our people, and we’ve risked losing our edge as a nation,” Biden said Saturday.

The new money represents the largest investment in building and fixing bridges since construction of the interstate highway system, which began in the 1950s. It also includes what administration officials call the biggest investments in transit and clean electricity transmission in U.S. history. There are tens of billions each for extending passenger rail, replacing lead drinking water pipes and expanding high-speed Internet access.

The funding could support projects from coast to coast to coast: A plan costing only a few million dollars would boost bus service in one smaller community, while another with a multibillion-dollar price tag would spur a massive undertaking to guard cities against rising sea levels. It could also boost plans to overhaul the cramped, century-old rail connections linking New York and New Jersey.

The Washington Post took a look at 10 sites that illustrate urgent needs or ambitious aspirations. In several locations, we did so through the experiences of individuals who greatly understand the impact this infrastructure work could have.

For those with a WaPo subscription, it's an excellent look at 10 major projects with lots of photos and personal stories. There are highways, train tunnels, airports, ports, bridges, dams, flood control, and much more that will make a major difference in people's lives for a long time.

Or as the other party tells it, curb stomping their freedoms under the boots of socialism.
Posted by IronLionZion | Mon Nov 8, 2021, 10:33 PM (2 replies)

Vaccine eligibility for mood disorders underscores elevated covid risk


When the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention added mood disorders to the list of conditions that put people at high risk for severe covid-19 recently, clinicians were not surprised. The mind-body connection, they say, is long-settled research.

But the scientific seal of approval is still critical: It makes millions of people eligible for booster shots based on their mental health diagnosis alone and gives vulnerable groups more reason to protect themselves.

“This is a population that is really, really at risk due to the way that covid-19 interacts with the diagnoses,” said Lisa Dailey, executive director of the Treatment Advocacy Center. “Until the CDC put this group of disorders on their list, they would not have known that.”

The CDC on Oct. 14 added “mental health conditions” to a long list of mostly physical conditions that make someone likely to be hospitalized, need a ventilator or die of the coronavirus, including cancer, diabetes and obesity.

The change means it is important for people with “mood disorders, including depression, and schizophrenia spectrum disorders” to get vaccinated — with initial doses and boosters — and take preventive measures, such as masking, social distancing and hand-washing, according to the CDC.

Clinicians have known that COVID can cause mental illness so there is a connection. But this is a new motivation for people to get booster shots. Depression is very common and often got worse for folks during the pandemic isolation.

Here's a little-noticed reason the Virginia race is such a big deal


It’s widely known that the Virginia gubernatorial race will offer clues on what the 2022 midterm elections might look like. If Democrats win, they might campaign aggressively on vaccine and mask requirements. If Republicans win, they’ll see that demagoguing on critical race theory and feeding former president Donald Trump’s lies about 2020 energize the base with no serious cost among swing voters.

But there’s a less obvious way the Virginia outcome could help shape future campaigns. A Democratic victory might show that another issue has unexpected political potential: Paid leave.

To an underappreciated degree, Democrat Terry McAuliffe’s candidacy has put paid leave in the foreground. McAuliffe, who served as governor from 2014 to 2018, has pledged to institute statewide paid sick, family and medical leave if elected, vowing to make Virginia the “first Southern state” to do so.

Numerous ads from the McAuliffe campaign have placed paid leave front and center. One ad casts passing a new paid-leave measure as pivotal to ensuring that “everyone is treated with dignity and respect.”

Apologies if it's paywall. The opinion piece is about paid leave.

This is the year to do it. Secretary Pete took parental leave. My doctor is unreachable because he is taking parental leave. People should be able to care for loved ones or take medical treatments without worrying how to pay the bills. It's important in Virginia where a lot of workers are contractors. Some contracting firms are better than others. The best firm I worked for and the worst firm I worked for are both headquartered in the old dominion.

The Ocean Cleanup Successfully Hauls 20,000 Pounds of Plastic From the Pacific Ocean


For nearly a decade, the world has been watching as Boyan Slat's The Ocean Cleanup transformed from an 18-year-old's idea to a non-profit pulling in millions in funding. The organization's aim is to remove 90% of the ocean's floating plastic by 2040. This ambitious goal has seemed both attainable and far out of reach during the highs and lows of testing different systems for the cleanup. But now, it seems that the organization's System 002, which is nicknamed Jenny, is up to the task.

After some trial and error with previous prototypes, Jenny appears to do its job well. In August, the team launched Jenny into the Pacific and headed toward the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. This vortex of trash located between Hawaii and California is fertile ground for The Ocean Cleanup. Over the course of 12 weeks, they tested the system to ensure that it would not only capture ocean plastic but that it was durable enough to bring the haul onboard.

Fortunately, Jenny passed the test. The last haul brought in an astounding 9,000 kilograms (almost 20,000 pounds) of plastic. So what happens to all this plastic? Once the system is closed and hauled aboard the ship, its net gets emptied. The plastic is then sorted and recycled, with some of the plastic even being used to create sunglasses that help fund The Ocean Project.

Like all of The Ocean Cleanup's technology, Jenny works by acting as a huge barrier that, when dragged along at slow speeds, traps trash. By skimming the surface of the ocean, Jenny picks up larger pieces of floating plastic. While some critics point out that there may be up to 30 times more plastic deeper in the ocean, The Ocean Cleanup maintains that collecting plastic while it is still large cuts down on eventual microplastics sinking into the sea.

As each system can hold anywhere from 10,000 to 15,000 kilograms, Slat estimates that with 10 Jennys, the organization could clean up 50% of the trash vortex in just five years. Of course, the system isn't perfect. The company is currently purchasing carbon credits to offset the emissions of the boat used to haul Jenny around the ocean. At the moment, it's a necessary evil as The Ocean Cleanup found that allowing the system to passively move around using the ocean's currents as originally planned ended in large quantities of plastic escaping from the barriers.

Still, even with the issues to work out, Jenny's success is a huge step forward in eliminating plastic from our oceans.

More photos and links to their sites at the link. This is a very intriguing project and they could use donations and support. The sunglasses made from ocean plastic look pretty cool.

The roots of QAnon run deeper than you think

Michael Flynn Thinks They Might Be Putting the Covid Vaccine in Your Salad Dressing


Michael Flynn is no longer a general, no longer the national security adviser, and no longer a credible figure in mainstream conservatism. This hasn’t stopped him from becoming one of the most powerful influencers among the nether regions of the MAGAverse. The Trump World hero has spent the bulk of the year spreading conspiracy theories at behind podiums at QAnon conferences, in front of evangelical church congregations, and on a never-ending stream of janky, grift-y internet shows and podcasts. It wouldn’t be hard to argue that he’s at or near the height of his popularity.

The world of disinformation grifters can be a ruthless one, though, as Flynn found out this week. One minute you’re calling out the devil for doing his work through condiments, the next you’re being called out as the devil yourself.

On Monday, Flynn appeared on “Thrivetime Show: Business School Without the B.S.,” a podcast clearly meant to drive business to host Clay Clark’s business coaching program, the ventures of affiliated snake oil salesmen, and Clark’s health-focused “Reawaken America” tour, featuring Flynn and other notable names. Mike Lindell, the pillow guy, for instance. Most of the tour’s upcoming dates are listed as sold out.

The interview with Flynn begins with a lot of talk about “waking up” to reality, followed by Clark claiming that PCR Covid tests are rigged, and that once you’re into the hospital doctors give you drugs developed by George Soros to kill you (one of the drugs he cites, Remdesevir, was administered to President Trump), all the while withholding “100-percent effective” treatments like hydroxychloroquine and Ivermectin, also known as the horse paste that has caused a flood of calls to poison control from victims of Clark-type con men.


More tweets and idiocy at the link.

I think I will make myself a delicious salad with dressing for lunch today.
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