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James48

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Member since: Sun Jan 3, 2010, 01:16 AM
Number of posts: 2,494

About Me

Was once a republican. long long ago, in a far, far away place. I apologize.

Journal Archives

More HHS Shakeups; Vaccine Advisers May Have 'Unresolved' Conflicts of Interest

More HHS Shakeups; Vaccine Advisers May Have ‘Unresolved’ Conflicts of Interest

On Monday, the Trump administration moved the two liaisons between the Health and Human Services Department and White House to the U.S. Agency for Global Media, which gives HHS Secretary Alex Azar more control, Politico reported on Monday. White House Liaison Emily Newman “already has spent more than three months detailed to the global media agency as its chief of staff,” said the report. This meant that her deputy, Catherine Granito, “an undergraduate at the University of Michigan as recently as this spring — had been in charge of the health department's personnel while playing a role in shaping policies in the middle of a pandemic.”

Also:
The House Select Subcommittee on the Coronavirus Crisis published documents on Tuesday that show top “Operation Warp Speed” advisers may have “unresolved” conflicts of interest in the administration's vaccine development process due to their financial holdings. Rep. James Clyburn, D-S.C., subcommittee chairman, said this shows “the need for full cooperation” with his investigation.


More:
https://www.govexec.com/workforce/2020/09/coronavirus-roundup-more-hhs-shakeups-vaccine-advisers-may-have-unresolved-conflicts-interest/168675/

I guess “operation warp speed” is going to try and create a cash windfall for the political appointees who manage it.


P.S.- it turns out several of the doctors involved have financial investments in vaccine or treatment company stocks- even one guy who is invested heavily in hydrochloroquine. Why does that not surprise me?

https://coronavirus.house.gov/news/press-releases/documents-reveal-potential-unresolved-conflicts-interest-among-top-operation

Trump Administration Felonies

I think we should have a forum just to record and keep track of Trump Administration felonies- so that we don’t forget them as they happen. I’ll start-

Burning Bibles in Portland?

So last night the right-wing media exploded after protestors in Portland set an American flag on fire, and then threw pieces of paper on the fire.

Russian RT media video showed the lighting of the flag, and reported that Bibles were being burned in the fire. Yes, RUSSIAN RT.

Then, a half-hour later, “Babylon Bee” wrote that protestors were burning bibles.

Within another half-hour, Brietbart, and a half-dozen other right-wing media outlets stated the Black Lives Matter protestors were burning American Flags and Bibles.

A local TV station picked up and said Bibles were burned, https://www.koin.com/news/protests/night-64-portland-firefighters-for-blm-vigils-and-community-healing/
And then “The Blaze”, the “New York Post”, and a dozen other right leaning news sources all started reporting bible burning and flag burning. (It was just two Americans flags, as far as I can tell, by a small group, several hours after a fire was set by the large group).

How the hell do you counter incendiary (no pun intended) false information like burning Bibles?

And democratic leaders at all levels should denounce the burning of an American flag by the Portland protestors. That isn’t called for.

White House Redacts Meeting Minutes on the Presidential Transition

From http://Govexec.com


White House Redacts Meeting Minutes on the Presidential Transition

“If there’s anything that needs to be redacted that’s a sign that there’s something that shouldn’t be going on,” said New York University’s Paul Light.

COURTNEY BUBLÉ | JULY 21, 2020 03:45 PM ET

The Trump administration has redacted the meeting minutes pertaining to its presidential transition activities, which are required by law, raising concerns from former officials and experts.

As the November election approaches, the Trump administration must adhere to various legal requirements to ensure a smooth and peaceful transition of power if the president is not reelected. Under the 2015 Presidential Transitions Improvement Act, which amended the 1963 Presidential Transition Act, the president must establish a White House coordinating committee and council of agency transition directors six months prior to the election. In its guidance in April on how agencies should be preparing, the Office of Management and Budget noted that the latter council would meet on May 27.

Government Executive submitted a request for the meeting minutes under the Freedom of Information Act and on Friday received a response that was almost entirely redacted. The text under sections titled “Key discussion items from the meeting” and “Key action items from the meeting” was completely blacked out.

(Snip)

Robert Shea, a principal at Grant Thornton Public Sector and former senior OMB official, was surprised.
“I can’t see anything … that’s not in the public interest and that’s worthy of redacting,” he told Government Executive on Monday. “I’m trying to rack my brain as to what would be so secretive that redactions were required. The members of that meeting ought to be public, the general planning on what’s allowed and what’s required under the new law shouldn't be confidential in my view. So yeah, it does surprise me.”



More:
https://www.govexec.com/management/2020/07/white-house-redacts-meeting-minutes-presidential-transition/167073/



Secret planning?

Suspect killed in deputy-involved shooting after mask fight

Source: ABC 12 , Flint, Michigan

DELTA TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WILX) - One man has died following an incident that began at a Quality Dairy located at 7120 Lansing Road in Dimondale around 6:45 a.m. Tuesday.

Michigan State Police said a masked man from Lansing, 77, and an unmasked man from Grand Ledge, Sean Ruis, 43, got into an altercation regarding wearing masks.

Police said the customer, Ruis, who was not wearing a mask was refused service by the store.

MSP said Ruis pulled out a knife and stabbed the 77-year-old Lansing man and then fled the scene from in a car.

(more at link)

Read more: https://www.abc12.com/2020/07/14/update-fight-over-masks-leads-to-stabbing-shooting-death/



Delta Township is near Lansing, Michigan.

An unmasked guy in a store is asked to leave-

A guy pulls out a knife and stabs the 77-year old masked customer standing there.

What is this country coming to?

More at link.

Church music director: I was fired over same-sex marriage

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. (AP) — A music director at a Catholic church in suburban Detroit said she was fired for being in a same-sex marriage.

Terry Gonda said she received a June 12 email that read, “The Archdiocese is choosing to activate its morality clause to terminate your employment.”

Gonda, 59, was music director at St. John Fisher Church in Auburn Hills, near Oakland University. She said priests knew that she and Kirsti Reeve, 51, were married in 2011.


“It’s a shot to the head from headquarters,” Gonda said of her firing. “The dehumanization of this is just not right. … My heart just hurts because I have an outpouring of love for them. I love them. I believe that they believe they’re doing the right thing — they’re trying to protect the church.”

More:

https://www.petoskeynews.com/news/state-region/church-music-director-i-was-fired-over-same-sex-marriage/article_78422e60-7d5b-56f2-a313-efea4589e3ed.html

White House Concealed Finding That OPM Merger was Illegal, Report Says

White House Concealed Finding That OPM Merger was Illegal, Report Says

COURTNEY BUBLÉ | JUNE 24, 2020

The Justice Department reportedly determined last year that a White House plan to dismantle the Office of Personnel Management was illegal—information the White House withheld from Congress while moving ahead with the plan anyway.

The watchdog group Project on Government Oversight published an investigation in The Daily Beast on Wednesday that documented a previously undisclosed conference call with senior administration officials in April 2019 in which the Justice Department’s Office of Legal Counsel rejected the Trump administration's plans to abolish OPM and transfer most of its functions to the General Services Administration. This legal opinion––which the administration denies exists––contradicts White House assertions over the last 14 months regarding the administration’s justifications for restructuring the system for managing federal employees.

“It is depressing that the administration covered up a clear legal opinion by the Department of Justice finding that its plan to dismember and dissolve OPM was unlawful,” Rep. Jamie Raskin, D-Md., told Government Executive. Raskin is one of several lawmakers who for months have demanded legal justification for the administration’s efforts to abolish OPM. “Trump officials did everything they could to bury this fact and repeatedly dodged my questions in our oversight hearing about the dubious legal authority for its ridiculous proposal. These people have no respect for the rule of law or the truth, and their reputations lie in tatters along with the reputation of Donald Trump,” he said.

More: https://www.govexec.com/oversight/2020/06/white-house-concealed-finding-opm-merger-was-illegal-report-says/166411/

Trump supporters burn Michigan absentee ballot applications

Source: WZZM- TV 13 Grand Rapids, Michigan



WALKER, Mich. — People gathered near Grand Rapids to burn letters informing them that they can vote by absentee ballot in future elections.

The applications were burned Friday during an event called Operation Incinerator outside the DeltaPlex in Walker.

Many people had flags, shirts and signs showing support for President Donald Trump and Republicans.

Michael Farage, president of the Grand Rapids Taxpayers Association, says the absentee ballot applications were unsolicited and a waste of money.



Read more: https://www.wzzm13.com/mobile/article/news/local/absentee-ballot-application-protest/69-d2a6c00b-ea74-4813-ade5-533d8d7d1a0a



Well, another example of torching Democratic values.


Hitler’s followers had book burning.

Trump followers have ballot application burning.

Michigan Governor- "We see you, we hear you"

Michigan Governor Whitmer, and Lt. Governor Gilchrist, address the death of George Floyd, the civil unrest, the pandemic, and more-

https://twitter.com/govwhitmer/status/1267174412559749122?s=21

Federal Inspectors Decry Lack of Transparency on Meat Plant Coronavirus Outbreaks

Source: GovExec.com

By Eric Katz, Govexec.com

Federal meat and poultry inspectors are raising concerns about a lack of transparency surrounding the safety of the processing plants where they work, saying local leaders are withholding information relating to the spread of the novel coronavirus at facilities.

The frustration comes as companies are starting to reopen facilities around the country after President Trump issued an executive order seeking to compel a reversal at those that had shuttered their doors due to COVID-19 outbreaks. Employees said the agency has ceased answering their questions and responding to concerns, and state officials have stopped providing information regarding employee safety.

The American Federation of Government Employees, which represents 6,500 Food Safety Inspection Service employees at the Agriculture Department, specifically cited Gov. Pete Ricketts, R-Neb., for his administration’s decision to no longer provide data of infection rates at specific food processing plants. At many communities with large meat processing facilities, coronavirus outbreaks have traced back almost entirely to the plants. The trend has led to facility closures or shift reductions, and thousands of plant employees and hundreds of federal inspectors contracting the virus. Without the data, the union said, employees and inspectors cannot take proper precautions.

“Hiding the number of infections from the public doesn't make the infections go away,” said Gregg James, vice president of the AFGE council that includes Nebraska inspectors. “If anything, it encourages this deadly virus to spread further by giving people a false sense of security.”

Read more: https://www.govexec.com/workforce/2020/05/federal-inspectors-decry-lack-transparency-meat-plant-coronavirus-outbreaks/165451/



Now USDA Management is sending meat inspectors blind into plants that some have never worked in before, without letting them know just how bad it is inside. Inspectors are NOT happy about this- but the only thing they can do is shine the light on government hiding the numbers of infected. Hey- would some reporters please file FOIA asking how many are reporting Sick, and what plants have sick Fed inspectors ? Then publish the data?

So far, more than 200 of my fellow USDA Federal Meat Inspectors have caught Covid-19, and 5 have died. Now they are hiding which plants have current infections going out of control, so that they can put out as much product before the plants collapse from sick workers. Federal Inspectors can’t refuse to work, or else they will get fired.
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