There’s no joy in saying, “I told you so!” to a corpse

Soon we will have data on states that did NOT keep people apart and did NOT issue stay at home orders. I will share that data with a plea for people to act appropriately. When it comes:

Credit Victor J. Blue for The New York Times

I WILL NOT gloat when Fox News watchers die. The network they followed featured Trump’s “hunches” instead of pandemic experts. 

I WILL NOT cheer when people in Red States get sick.  Even those who voted for Trump and kept supporting him.

What will I do? Keep pleading for them to listen to healthcare experts.

I want them to change their actions in order to save their lives. If they don’t, they might get sick and die. Part of that change is for them to understand that what Trump is saying and doing has made the situation worse. Will they stop supporting him and change? Yes. Some will. I will welcome them to a community who believes in science. But some won’t.

 If I’m wrong and they are right how will they respond? By mocking me. “See? I told you it wasn’t that big of a deal. I didn’t social distance and I’m fine! You lot destroyed the economy for nothing!” .

I’m not sorry I tried to save their lives. I’m glad that they were lucky because of their remoteness or other circumstances that prevented them from getting sick. Maybe the actions that I took in my city and state early prevented them in their location from getting sick. That’s the prevention paradox. 

If they are wrong and I’m right they will expect me to act the same way towards them as they would toward me. But I won’t. Why?

There’s no joy in saying, “I told you so!” to a corpse.

A convoy of Italian Army trucks is unloaded upon arrival from Bergamo carrying bodies of coronavirus victims to the cemetery of Ferrara, Italy, where they will be cremated, Saturday, March 21, 2020 (Massimo Paolone/LaPresse via AP)

5 Ways to Financially Hurt Trump & Help Americans During #Coronavirus Pandemic

Trump is calling #COVID19 the Chinese Virus. Read Kurt Eichenwald’s great Twitter thread and Amanda Marcotte’s excellent article on why he’s doing it and how to react. My thoughts on what we can do about it. Make Trump’s Racist Comments Unprofitable For Him.

Trump’s behavior changes when he knows it will impact him positively or negatively financially. Instead of hoping he will suddenly care about that Americans are endangered by his comments let’s use our understanding of his psyche and focus on what he cares about–money–then come up with multiple legal methods to take it away from him. The goal:

Make Trump’s businesses lose millions in revenue whenever he makes statements that reasonable people consider racist.

Close up of Trump’s notes where he crossed out “Corona” and replaced it with “Chinese” Virus as he speaks with his coronavirus task force 3/19/20 at the White House. Image from: Jabin Botsford, Washington PostAs Eichenwald points out, we know how Trump and the right plays the game of “trolling the Libs” then following it up with bad faith arguments and definitions.

2…the purpose was SPECIFICALLY (according to the political consultant’s strategy”) to lead non-scumbags to react “That’s racist!” Then they . . . → Read More: 5 Ways to Financially Hurt Trump & Help Americans During #Coronavirus Pandemic

What Trump should’ve done instead of shaking hands at the #coronavirus presser

All 4 retail executives shook hands with Trump. None of the health care or lab executives did.

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Who are you arguing with today? Fight the real enemy.

When Warren dropped out it became the cue for the Biden vs. Sanders fight to begin.

The media LOVE a two person fight. The main stream media can do horse races and “Dems in Disarray!” stories.

The cable news can dig into the numbers of voters and delegates by percentage points and demographic and go back to 2016 numbers. (I watched Rachel Maddow question Bernie on specific numbers of voter percentages by demographics on Super Tuesday vs. 2016 for an hour last night.)

The right-wing media love to see democratic candidates fight each other and will hype old fights and emphasize new ones. They use the classic. “Let’s you and him fight.” When I see this happening my first impulse is to ask three questions,


Trump, the GOP establishment, Russia’s propaganda social media machine and Right Wing media.

2) What can we do to weaken THOSE people and groups?

Demand reinvigorated investigations into Trump’s crimes.

We have seen the democratic establishment slow down on investigating Trump’s crimes. They are giving a number of reasons like, “The conviction didn’t work.” or “The public has investigation fatigue.” Some are giving the reason that the . . . → Read More: Who are you arguing with today? Fight the real enemy.

Pence muzzles Dr. Fauci for contradicting Trump on the speed of making vaccine

During Trump’s press conference he said a vaccine would be developed “fairly rapidly” Then Dr. Anthony Fauci went to the podium and said we are moving fast, but it will still take a year to a year and a half for a working vaccine.

I watched Trump’s eyes narrow as he figured out that Dr. Fauci had just contradicted him. It doesn’t matter that Dr. Fauci is one of the country’s leading experts on viruses and the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease. What mattered to Trump was it looked like he wasn’t in control.

With this White House it’s not about trying to figure out best how to stop the spread of the virus. It’s about how to stop the spread of “disloyalty” among people who work for Trump.

The next day in the New York Times we see how Trump punishes disloyalty, he told Pence to control the scientists and the message about the virus.

Pence Will Control All Coronavirus Messaging From Health Officials.

“Dr. Fauci has told associates that the White House had instructed him not to say anything else without clearance.”

Watch this video where Trump says the vaccine is . . . → Read More: Pence muzzles Dr. Fauci for contradicting Trump on the speed of making vaccine

Trump Set Fire To Our Democracy. Maddow Tells Us To Act Now

“This is not a warning. The dark days aren’t coming. The dark days are here.” Rachel Maddow. Feb 20, 2020

Rachel Maddow believed that the heroic thing was to sound the alarm and warn people of the direction the country is heading. But last week she realized we are past that. She tells journalists to stop describing what is happening with timid phrases like “appearances of impropriety”

The media must acknowledge what is happening, “The rules are gone. They will do what they want. The government will be turned against you if you stand against this President.” Trump has set democracy on fire. Now it’s a 4 alarm fire and we need to act. Watch the whole video here. (link)

Trump Set Democracy On Fire. McConnell Spread It

Shown here is Mitch McConnell driving our burning Democracy though town to spread it. The media recorded the fire but they didn’t stop it.

Democracy is burning. Maddow has ideas on what to do but she’s not an activist or politician. She identifies first as a journalist. Their job is to report on the news, not make it. In the middle of the fire it’s hard for a reporter to . . . → Read More: Trump Set Fire To Our Democracy. Maddow Tells Us To Act Now

5 groups that help the GOP avoid justice for their crimes

Lt. Col. Alexander Vindman was removed from his position at the White House on Friday. Today Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer asked that every agency inspector general investigate retaliation against whistleblowers who report presidential misconduct. (Politico) This is a good move by Schumer, but there needs to be a much bigger understanding of all forms of intimidation Trump and the GOP use constantly. Trump’s retaliation against his political enemies has hidden, delayed benefits to all the GOP.

When Dems win they are pushed to “look forward not backward” so legitimate investigations & prosecution of lawbreaking Republicans are stopped. We saw this from Obama following the George W. Bush years. I fear the same will happen after Trump is out of office. “We don’t want people to think we are like the Republicans and are retaliating.”

It will be essential to make it clear that investigating, arresting and convicting people for actual crimes is about justice–not retaliation.

Besides themselves, who helps the GOP escape justice for their crimes? 1) Moderate Democratic politicians 2) The mainstream media 3) The violent right: both real ones and the ones who bluster online 4) Concern trolls: both fake ones on the right and real ones . . . → Read More: 5 groups that help the GOP avoid justice for their crimes

Defeating Bullies: Lessons from fighting Weinstein & Ailes

These last several weeks I’ve felt depressed, numb and angry. Only one thing inspired me during this time. Reading the Catch and Kill book and listening to the Catch and Kill podcast. It’s the story about the team that finally got Harvey Weinstein arrested for his multiple alleged rapes and sexual assaults.

There are a lot of lessons to learn from that book. What I needed to read and hear about were the historic failures and what the latest journalist to take on bullies, Ronan Farrow, learned from what happened in the previous attempts to expose Weinstein. One lesson is especially relevant now.

Bullies will continue to manipulated the system, media, public and victims to block a story and kill charges but the crimes at the core of the charges do not disappear.

There are also lessons to be learned from the take down of Roger Ailes. In both cases powerful men offered riches or fame to get what they wanted. If the victims fought back they used their money and power to silence them. When challenged they used threats to victims and the journalists who were trying to tell the story.

I know a bit about fighting powerful . . . → Read More: Defeating Bullies: Lessons from fighting Weinstein & Ailes

Pompeo needs to testify under oath because lying to the media isn’t a crime

The story of Mike Pompeo’s interview with Mary Louise Kelly from NPR and his subsequent response calling her a liar came out while I was reading Catch and Kill and watching Bombshell.

Those stories showed the multiple ways the powerful hide their lies and crimes. The good news is that both those stories give us a model to use to stop them.

I’ve watched several Pompeo interviews and they show a man who isn’t skilled in talking to the media so he resorts to insults and intimidation. I’ve seen this attitude many times before, almost always from men. They think “media training” means figuring out how to train the media to do what they want. They know it’s not a crime to lie to the public or the press. As former Trump campaign manager Corey Lewandowski said, ‘I have no obligation to be honest to the media.’

Pompeo and his staff start off using bribes of access to control who is doing the interview and what the topics will be. When that doesn’t work they use name calling and threats. Remember his interview in October with the Tennessee reporter? Pompeo made his dissatisfaction clear. I can guarantee that following that . . . → Read More: Pompeo needs to testify under oath because lying to the media isn’t a crime

TV producers: Tell viewers Gen. Petraeus works for @KKR_Co which has holdings in major defense contractors

Below is how Face the Nation identified Petraeus on January 5th. They didn’t identify the company he works for, Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co, nor his title: David H. Petraeus, Member, Chairman of the KKR Global Institute

Last week I predicted that the cable news shows would book “retired” generals to talk about how to respond to Trump’s assassination of Iran’s General Soleimani but would fail to inform viewers if they worked for firms that would profit from war. Here was my piece:

To all MSM producers: Tell us who pays the war experts you are booking now

It wasn’t a hard prediction to make. I linked to a Lee Fang article from the Nation in 2014 Who’s Paying the Pro-War Pundits? Today Lee Fang, (now at the Intercept), identified some of the same retired generals who went on TV and the failure of the media to disclose their ties to defense contractors.

TV Pundits Praising Suleimani Assassination Neglect To Disclose Ties To Arms Industry

It’s not a surprise when Fox News does this, but we should expect more from CBS’s Face The Nation, NBC’s “Meet the Press, NPR’s Morning Editon with Steve Inskeep, and Public Radio International’s . . . → Read More: TV producers: Tell viewers Gen. Petraeus works for @KKR_Co which has holdings in major defense contractors