Reason Roundup

Jackson Cops Claim Drug Busts Are Protecting the Public From COVID-19

Plus: Trump tries hydroxychloroquine, France bans drone surveillance of COVID-19 confinement, and more...

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Cops warm to using the coronavirus as an excuse for aggressive behavior. At the start of pandemic-related orders to stay at home and shut down businesses, cops across the country kept insisting that we were all in this together and they were only out to educate. A couple of months in, that attitude has all but disappeared in many places. Even as state and local authorities continue to ease lockdown rules, police have been ramping up aggressive enforcement of the remaining restrictions, often with devastating results.

One of the worst recent examples comes from Jackson, Mississippi. At a press conference yesterday, police announced 146 arrests had been made as part of "Operation Safe Street," an initiative allegedly aimed at social-distancing scofflaws.

But look closer and you'll see that this was simply an excuse for police to pad their pockets by enforcing rules against the usual victimless crimes (things like marijuana possession or owning a weapon without paperwork from the right state).

Jackson police netted themselves $20,000 in seized cash while confiscating 500 pounds of marijuana and 60 firearms, according to Sam Brown, the department's public information officer. The majority of those arrested—111 people—were charged with misdemeanors.

Police didn't say how many of those people were crammed into unsanitary jails and then released back into the community in the name of stopping the spread of disease (not to mention how much unnecessary contact with potentially infected individuals this meant for law enforcement officers or how many community members cops may have spread germs to in the process of cracking down on these laws).

In New York City, authorities continued a crusade against Hasidic Jew communities for shunning certain shutdown orders. Yesterday, the New York City Police Department (NYPD) shut down a religious school in Bedford-Stuyvesant and sent approximately 60 children they found there home. The school's administrator said no formal classes had been taking place, however, and policies were in place to protect students studying there independently.

"He said that individual students were studying together on their own accord, and with masks and extreme social distancing in place," Avrohom Weinstock, associate director of education at the Agudath Israel of America, told The New York Times. "I can't comment on the facts as we were not present, but felt it was important to convey another side to this story."

Meanwhile, in Illinois, the state can now "cite nonessential businesses with a misdemeanor for opening up to customers in violation of [Gov. J.B. Pritzker's] executive orders dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic," The Chicago Tribune reports. More:

Among the businesses the new rule targets are restaurants, bars, gyms and fitness centers, salons and barbershops, which have been ordered closed to serving customers on-site since March.

Under Illinois law, a Class A misdemeanor can carry a fine of $75 to $2,500 and up to 364 days in jail.

Pritzker has repeatedly said he would largely rely on local jurisdictions to enforce the statewide stay-at-home order that took effect March 21, and leave it to people to police themselves. At his daily briefing on April 23, the governor said he wasn't "encouraging police officers to stop people and arrest them, or take drastic action."

But last week, he threatened to hold back federal dollars from communities that buck his order, and he said businesses that flout the restrictions would face enforcement measures by the state Department of Financial and Professional Regulation and licensing bodies.

As more and more people rebel against prolonged and extensive lockdown orders, police are going to have to start arresting a lot more people—and putting themselves and their communities in a lot more danger—or take a page from the Texas playbook. As Reason's Eric Boehm wrote here yesterday, "enforcement should be reserved for where it can actually work."


QUICK HITS

• New York's ban on flavored vape products takes effect this week.

• In France, the high court has ordered the government "to stop using camera drones to check if Paris residents are complying with deconfinement rules, condemning the practice as 'illegal' and 'an attack on private life,'" reports The Connexion.

• In Queens, the newly formed Human Trafficking Bureau "will combat sex and labor trafficking by aggressively prosecuting" people who are engaged in neither.

• "In the wake of the coronavirus epidemic, the content-sharing platform" OnlyFans has "exploded in popularity, seeing a 75 percent increase in sign-ups in recent weeks and garnering 170,000 new users per day."

• President Donald Trump told America yesterday that he has been taking the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine to ward off COVID-19, despite a lack of strong evidence that it helps fight against the novel coronavirus when it does exist, no evidence whatsoever that it helps prevent COVID-19, and an indisputable track record of it causing dangerous side effects.

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  1. Cops warm to using the coronavirus as an excuse for aggressive behavior.

    Progress. They now feel they need to have an excuse.

    1. Hello.

      Yeh, seeing one too many videos and articles showing cops acting like thuggish bums.

      1. Theres plenty of videos of cops also defying their governors. How about highlighting a few of the good ones.

        1. Fair enough. I visited Police One the other day and an internal survey of cops across America basically said about 40% to even half don’t generally like all this.

          Still, the ones doing it aren’t helping their cause.

          Here, a cop in New Brunswick gave a ticket to a guy eating a muffin in his car alone in a Tim Horton’s parking lot.

          And was a dick about it. Apparently, if you eat in your car marauding Covid teenaged Zombies will appear.

          Is that the most Canadian story you’ve heard so far today?

          1. It’s probably not the eating while in a car that was illegal, but eating while still on the donut shop’s property that was. Although probably if you drove to someone else’s parking lot, or drove with a muffin from someplace else to eat it on Tim Horton’s lot, that would be legal.

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        2. And isn’t that Live PD’s job?

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        3. We should also appreciate the number of cops who haven’t had to make hard choices because their state/local authorities have not gone batshit progressive totalitarian.

    2. Respect mah authoritah!

  2. Even as state and local authorities continue to ease lockdown rules, police have been ramping up aggressive enforcement of the remaining restrictions…

    We’re all itching to get back to business as usual. You think that doesn’t include head-busters?

    1. Yeah, lockdown can drive everyone crazy

  3. The fact that testing can hurt doesn’t mean that it will in every case. That guy from NPR is like all journalists, dumb as post but makes up for it by being smug

    1. This BS about the dangers of this drug are so overblown. There are people who take this drug as a prophylactic in malaria countries all the time, day after day. There are certainly risks of side effects, but that is the case with anything, including many OTC drugs.

      That said, I don’t know why Trump keeps beating this drum. The only thing I can think is he is privy to some other study coming out and he is lining up the usual suspects for a dunking. Or he is just bloviating as usual.

      1. I took it for about six months when I was overseas in the Army. They gave it to everyone. It is the stuff in tonic water for Christ’s sake.

        1. True, although the amount in modern tonic water is minuscule. It’s there purely for flavor. You’d have to drink gallons of the stuff to achieve a therapeutic dose.

        2. I’m in my mid fifties, but have no significant health issues., as such COVID infection poses little to no risk to me. The last two months working from home have probably lowered my risk of death mainly by keeping me off the highway, not by keeping me uninfected.

          I would not take HCQ, even if I got the virus. The safety of any drug is always taken in the context of what it is treating, and when the condition is not serious then even a small risk becomes unnecessary. And HCQ is not risk free – most serious issue probably being disruption of cardiac conduction resulting in a condition called Torsades de Pointes. I might consider it for malaria prophylaxis, but for most regions would probably just use doxycycline. Were I older, or especially if I had COPD, or diabetes I’d probably take HCQ.

        3. That’s quinine.

          1. Lol@u

      2. It makes democrats look like scared little bitches hoping for the worst. That’s why.

    2. There’s definitely a tinge of ‘ha, ha Orange Man Bad’ stupidity to this.

      Journalists, like I’ve said, are the pretend cool kids who aren’t even at the back of the class where the real cool ones were. They’re in the front or middle. You know, the ones who would look back at people with a smug look to people who didn’t accept the teacher’s word.

      Change my mind.

      1. If were possible to make Animal House today, the Omega house would be filled almost entirely with future journalists. They are all just conformist assholes.

    3. But since Trump is a model of perfect heath; some even say the healthiest person ever to be elected president, why would he even bother? You’d think a specimen like Trump would give the KungFlu the old HI-YAY without the need of performance enhancing drugs!

      #Trump≠Norris

      1. It does seem sometimes that Trump is part cockroach.

        The thing that gets me about some of the concern expressed is that it is coming from people who would be overjoyed if Trump had a heart attack and went belly up.

        1. They’d loose their golden goose for fundraising dollars and advertising revenue. Someone needs to generate click bait and he’s the bestest ever!

          1. True. Pence can’t tweet worth a damn.

            1. Pence is boring, and works hard at remaining boring. E.g., how can you make up a sex scandal about a guy who never allows himself to be in a room alone with a woman, except his wife?

    4. >>dumb as post but makes up for it by being smug

      dumb as a post and makes it worse by being smug

  4. New York’s ban on flavored vape products takes effect this week.

    Liberty is a tasteless vapor. Inhale it deep, New York.

    1. What if the flavors are like barf, booger, earthworm, and earwax?

  5. Someone on CNN making some sense. As a member of the ‘overclass’, he can’t admit to the many overclass failures that aided this.

    https://twitter.com/FareedZakaria/status/1262086263080919041
    Imagine you’re an American who works with his hands, & you’ve lost your job because of the lockdowns. You turn on the TV & hear medical experts, academics, technocrats & journalists explain we must keep the economy closed. All these people making that case have jobs.

    1. Like this:
      https://twitter.com/stoolpresidente/status/1260721488241418240
      Emergency Press Conference – When Did Flattening The Curve Turn Into Finding The Cure

    2. Not just jobs — jobs that are paid at least an order of magnitude more than you make at the best of times.

      1. The Costly Failure to Update Sky-Is-Falling Predictions
        https://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2020/05/15/the_costly_failure_to_update_sky-is-falling_predictions_143215.html

        On March 6, Liz Specht, Ph.D., posted a thread on Twitter that immediately went viral. As of this writing, it has received over 100,000 likes and almost 41,000 retweets, and was republished at Stat News. It purported to “talk math” and reflected the views of “highly esteemed epidemiologists.” It insisted it was “not a hypothetical, fear-mongering, worst-case scenario,” and that, while the predictions it contained might be wrong, they would not be “orders of magnitude wrong.” It was also catastrophically incorrect.

        The crux of Dr. Specht’s 35-tweet thread was that the rapid doubling of COVID-19 cases would lead to about 1 million cases by May 5, 4 million by May 11, and so forth. Under this scenario, with a 10% hospitalization rate, we would expect approximately 400,000 hospitalizations by mid-May, which would more than overwhelm the estimated 330,000 available hospital beds in the country. This would combine with a lack of protective equipment for health care workers and lead to them “dropping from the workforce for weeks at a time,” to shortages of saline drips and so forth. Half the world would be infected by the summer, and we were implicitly advised to buy dry goods and to prepare not to leave the house.

        Interestingly, this thread was wrong not because we managed to bend the curve and stave off the apocalypse; for starters, Dr. Specht described the cancellation of large events and workplace closures as something that would shift things by only days or weeks.

        1. Dr. Specht will never feel bad about being wrong or learn anything from the experience. She will be just as wrong the next time she makes a prediction.

          1. She will never be accountable either. Never. No accountability for Obamagate, no accountability for failed C19/climate predictions, no accountability for squat.

            They are better than us. They aren’t accountable to their inferiors; we are accountable to them. FYTW.

          2. But enough about Climate Change

        2. For what it’s worth, Specht is a German word for “woodpecker.” Make of that what you will.

  6. social-distancing scofflaws

    In the absence of any compelling evidence that incidental encounters on the street are an actual vector for transmission, social-distancing law scoffing is itself a victimless crime.

    1. It is not a crime. It is violating an illegal and unconstitutional law. Making it illegal for people to congregate in large groups is in no way consistent with the right to free assembly.

      1. an illegal and unconstitutional law

        Which means absolutely nothing, since a majority of what the government does is not authorized by the document.

        1. WE are talking about the state governments. They are not bound by the limits of the document outside of the BOR (or most of it).

          1. States have their own constitutions, which are also routinely ignored.

            1. Move those goalposts asshole.

      2. Yeah, I realized after I hit Submit that I should have added, “And it shouldn’t be a ‘crime’ in the first place.” But I hoped it would be obvious to the target obvious.

      3. Reason MIGHT come to regret not being the most forceful voice against these nonsense policies out there.

        1. I’m surprised they already haven’t. I refuse to donate to them as long as they tell me they’re libertarian while pedding patiently unlibertarian bullshit, and I highly doubt I’m the only one.

          I couldn’t care less about what someone thinks or believes. I can get along with someone regardless of their beliefs. I care about why they believe what they believe. Don’t tell me you’re a libertarian and then argue like a garden-variety left-winger. It’s disingenuous at best and gaslighting at worst.

  7. In France, the high court has ordered the government “to stop using camera drones to check if Paris residents are complying with deconfinement rules…”

    Government spy drone operators should switch to Freedom Fries since they’re not allowed to use French airspace.

  8. Nancy Pelosi says Trump is ‘morbidly obese’ and should not take hydroxychloroquine

    https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2020/05/19/nancy-pelosi-trump-morbidly-obese-hydroxychloroquine/5218979002/

    1. Maybe he should try that gin and botox diet Nancy has been on for the last 70 years.

      1. she apparently has a freezer full of ice cream, which she totally doesn’t use to lure unsuspecting young people with high quality blood to her house.

      2. I…am not sure he can find a properly secured cavern where he can hide his severed heart, so I don’t think it will work out for him as well as it did for her.

      3. she’s pickled in more ways than one

    2. Health guidance from Keith Richards’ big sister

      1. I’m pretty sure she’s not quite dead yet; certainly a walking corpse turd would see as an authority.

    3. If she was 80 years younger youd have such a hard on.

      1. Naah. Doesn’t have HRC’s pants-suit shape turd favors.

    4. She’s already embalmed, when is someone going to bury her already!

    5. Nancy doesn’t appear to be obese, but she’s certainly morbid.

  9. President Donald Trump told America yesterday that he has been taking the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine to ward off COVID-19

    Hopefully he also points out that he has a right to decide what he puts in his own body.

    1. He did. The media didnt agree. He even listed his doctors letter in regards to it. The media again didnt agree.

    2. Then signs an EO stating every American also does; dismantling the DEA, FDA, USDA and ATF* with one stroke of the pen.

      *not an exhaustive list. Feel free to add any others.

    3. I’m old enough to remember when libertarians supported the right of people to take whatever drug they wanted, especially if their doctors agreed to let them do it.

      My greatest hope now would be for Trump to try some medical marijuana to ward off COVID . The nuclear-blast head explosions from the Reason would be glorious to behold.

      I can just see the title of the Gillespie column now: “Sure, Trump’s doctor said he can smoke weed to fight the virus: But is it safe?”

  10. The Inevitable Coronavirus Censorship Crisis is Here
    As the Covid-19 crisis progresses, censorship programs advance, amid calls for China-style control of the Internet
    https://taibbi.substack.com/p/temporary-coronavirus-censorship

    When the Covid-19 crisis struck, the scolding utopia was no longer abstraction. The dream was reality! Pure communism had arrived! Failure to take elite advice was no longer just a deplorable faux pas. Not heeding experts was now murder. It could not be tolerated. Media coverage quickly became a single, floridly-written tirade against “expertise-deniers.” For instance, the Atlantic headline on Kemp’s decision to end some shutdowns was, “Georgia’s Experiment in Human Sacrifice.”

    “Experts” get things wrong for reasons that are innocent (they’ve all been taught the same incorrect thing in school) and less so (they have a financial or professional interest in denying the truth).

    The WMD fiasco happened because journalists listened to people with military ranks and titles instead of demanding evidence and listening to their own instincts. The same thing happened with Russiagate, a story fueled by intelligence “experts” with grand titles who are now proven to have been wrong to a spectacular degree, if not actually criminally liable in pushing a fraud.

    We’ve become incapable of talking calmly about possible solutions because we’ve lost the ability to decouple scientific or policy discussions, or simple issues of fact, from a political argument. Reporting on the Covid-19 crisis has become the latest in a line of moral manias with Donald Trump in the middle.

    1. What the Believers Are Denying
      The denial of climate change and the denial of racism rest on the same foundation: an attack on observable reality.
      https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/01/what-deniers-climate-change-and-racism-share/579190/

      1. Lysenko lives!

      2. The Atlantic outdoes itself every fvckin week. What shitstain on our culture

      3. I was listening to NPR this morning where the topic of discussion was science denialism in the Age of Trump, mostly the science denialism of Trump and his supporters with regards to the coronavirus pandemic but also touching on global warming climate change and anti-vaxxers. (Careful of course not to mention that the anti-vaxxers might not overlap completely with Trump supporters.) One of their big complaints was the amount of misinformation that is allowed to float around out there despite the dangers of misinformation – for example, the couple who drank aquarium cleaner because Trump told them to, the huge spike in calls to poison control from people drinking bleach and disinfectants after Trump told them to, and the wild theory that the virus might have been a man-made virus that escaped the lab when there’s absolutely no evidence of that. And, of course, the necessity of listening to the science when scientists like Fauci tell you you’re going to have to quarantine the entire population for however long it takes to get rid of the virus regardless of the economic costs. We’re just going to have to wait until a vaccine for the coronavirus is developed before we can open things back up.

        I sure would have liked to have asked these people how long it might take to develop a vaccine for this coronavirus and whether or not they’re developing a vaccine based on the vaccines they’ve developed for the previous coronavirus outbreaks and the common cold or maybe from the flu vaccine they developed that wiped out the flu. Or maybe if the idea that we’re going to be developing an effective vaccine for this thing any day now might itself be some sort of misinformation. I know goddamn well the part about the people drinking aquarium cleaner and bleach are utter bullshit NPR has no problem spreading.

    2. Instead of asking calmly if hydroxychloroquine works, or if the less restrictive Swedish crisis response has merit, or questioning why certain statistical assumptions about the seriousness of the crisis might have been off, we’re denouncing the questions themselves as infamous. Or we’re politicizing the framing of stories in a way that signals to readers what their take should be before they even digest the material. “Conservative Americans see coronavirus hope in Progressive Sweden,” reads a Politico headline, as if only conservatives should feel optimism in the possibility that a non-lockdown approach might have merit! Are we rooting for such an approach to not work?

      1. Are we rooting for such an approach to not work?

        Yes they are. They are drunk with power and enjoying the suffering of average Americans. To your typical Prog journalist, these last few months have been one of the greatest and most pleasurable events of their lives. They don’t want it to ever end.

        1. and every product out there making commercials as fast as they can to signal their caring. Even trash haulers are now being glorified its sick, not the trash haulers but this whole glorification to the new social order of stay at home

      2. Yes, absolutely the Pro-Lockdowners are cheerleading every single death in Sweden. I watched this happening in the comments at Instapundit. Every day that Sweden had a surge of deaths (usually on tuesdays, after the weekend reports all came out) they’d be in there crowing and predicting that Sweden would be locking down in the next week. Then they’d slowly shut up until the next bit of bad news.

        I will challenge the idea that this is just a Prog thing. COVID kills people with pre-existing conditions, which leads us to assume it only hits old people (because lots of old people have preexisting conditions). Likewise, Lockdown Fever infects people who believe that Top Men can protect the little people from themselves. Nearly 100% of Progs are represented by this condition, but on the right there are still enough of those fuckers that they at least stayed silent while this happened.

        As we see from Taibbi, even progs can be cured of Top Man syndrome, but as I saw on Instapundit, even conservatarians can suffer from it. Treating that disease is important if we want to avoid this again.

        1. I constantly see progs complaining that we didn’t take the SK/Singapore approach. They don’t think through that if we had done that, Trump would have shut down international travel the minute news came out about this; quarantined New York City, DC, Seattle, SF, LA, New Orleans, and Miami; and implemented data tracking on people that would have made the old Soviet commissars green with envy. And he would have immediately been accused by the media of over-reacting, and the progs would have done their “hug a chink to show your love for humanity” virtue-signaling anyway.

        2. You are right. It is not just a prog thing. A lot of otherwise reasonable people on Instapundit have lost their minds over this just as much as any Prog.

  11. In Queens, the newly formed Human Trafficking Bureau “will combat sex and labor trafficking by aggressively prosecuting” people who are engaged in neither.

    Some cops are gonna be getting handies. For justice. For the victims.

    1. Paying for orgasms and then walking away.

    2. Just curious, does anyone have a link to the NYPD jobs page? Asking for a friend.

  12. Peer reviewed:

    https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2766367
    In this community seroprevalence study in Los Angeles County, the prevalence of antibodies to SARS-CoV-2 was 4.65%. The estimate implies that approximately 367 000 adults had SARS-CoV-2 antibodies, which is substantially greater than the 8430 cumulative number of confirmed infections in the county on April 10.3 Therefore, fatality rates based on confirmed cases may be higher than rates based on number of infections. In addition, contact tracing methods to limit the spread of infection will face considerable challenges.

      1. And here’s the 7-day rolling average of *positive* tests in Texas.
        https://twitter.com/SeanTrende/status/1261651271817351169

        1. On that thread, someone posted a graph showing that the number of deaths per week in January 2018 was higher than it is right now in Texas, but there was no media panic surrounding that outbreak of carnage.

          1. And the people pimping these dishonestly extrapolate it through the entire state, rather than dig into *where* these positive cases are. Inevitably, the vast majority of a “spike” in a more rural area is at a nursing home, or in Amarillo’s case, a meatpacking plant. What they’re not doing is spiking in the general population, and that’s likely because most people that catch this are having relatively mild symptoms unless they’re diabetic fatasses.

  13. “In the wake of the coronavirus epidemic, the content-sharing platform” OnlyFans has “exploded in popularity…

    OnlyFans? They’re just blowing the germs around.

    1. Also, sounds discriminatory.

    2. Guess ENB hasn’t checked out Rolling Stone this morning. They have a headline today, questioning whether OnlyFans is censoring sex workers accounts.

      1. RS has Taibbi cooties, so is now on the Do Not Read list.

      2. i thought it was ONLY sex stuff. I hope they aren’t, there’s some halfway decent stuff there and I’m paid up for the month.

    3. “content sharing platform”

      Call it what it is, it’s porn. People have nothing to do and they’re wanking their dicks and clits out of existence.

  14. China getting its money’s worth

    https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-8326919/Huawei-seals-5m-deal-Imperial-College-help-build-new-tech-campus-London.html
    MPs raise new security fears as Chinese tech giant Huawei seals £5m deal with Imperial College to help build new tech campus in London
    Imperial College London has cut a deal worth £5 million with China’s Huawei
    Tech giant will pay towards new ‘tech hub’ on their West London campus
    University’s research has been by Government to form policy on Covid-19

    1. That pays for, what, 5000 sq ft?

      1. Maybe they can send them a few spare computer programmers to help them update their epidemiology modeling software.

        1. The models all spit out “CHINA NUMBAH ONE!” at the end.

  15. President Donald Trump told America yesterday that he has been taking the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine to ward off COVID-19…

    At some point they need to make the bait he’s using illegal. The president is in danger of over-fishing the waters.

    1. Well, doesn’t hydroxychloroquine cause heart problems for some people? If banning it might help save just one life….

    2. Was that a senator giving medical advice?

    3. Fish Tank Trump has a good ring to it don’t you think!

      1. Make Aquariums Clean Again?

      2. Not nearly as catching as lefty asshole Wearenotperfect

        1. There’s a new product out called Trump Gills. Looks like you’ve already invested in that scam you pathetic asshole!

          1. Looks like you’ve been indulging in a bit of the fish tank cleaner yourself, pinky.

    4. He should be getting tired of reeling in ENB. At some point it becomes so easy it’s not fair to the journalists.

  16. “enforcement should be reserved for where it can actually work.”

    “Very well. No ‘Pandemic Relief’ for *you*!”

  17. https://twitchy.com/brettt-3136/2020/05/18/i-mean-it-just-happens-judge-sullivan-weighs-in-on-michael-flynns-lost-fbi-interview/

    The FBI can charge you for lying based on whatever they write down as your words on a piece of paper, and the federal judge meant to protect your rights will think nothing of it when that freedom-hangs-in-balance piece of paper just disappears suddenly

    Shockingly cavalier take by Judge Sullivan to defense counsel @SidneyPowell1 on 9/10/19 re: FBI’s *lost* original Flynn interview 302:

    “[T]hings happen and documents are lost. I mean, it just happens.”

    Excused *misplacement* of seminal interview document?

    1. Sullivan is a disgrace. Sadly, however, he is a typical federal judge. There are a few good ones but most of them are just government hack assholes like Sullivan.

      1. They appear to be trying to wrench this so that Trump has to pardon Flynn.

        Sullivan made it known from the get-go that he wasn’t going to be impartial–he stated up front that Flynn should have been charged with treason. That he wasn’t immediately forced to recuse himself for that crack is indicative of how corrupt this whole process has been from the get-go.

    2. And still radio silence from Reason.

    3. The balls on that fuckin guy.

      I want to be a fly on the courtroom wall when some counsel dares to say that to a federal judge in response to a spoilation accusation.

    4. The FBI is a tool of the state to go after enemies the state, nothing more. “Lying to the FBI” and “Cannot record your interview with the FBI” are intentional tools of what would be considered the “king’s men” in other times.

      Sometimes they catch a bank robber or two for PR purposes only.

  18. Trump crony/donor gets $27 million gift (not loan) from US taxpayers while rival Warren Buffett gets zero.

    A private jet company founded by a donor to President Donald Trump received nearly $27 million in government funding under a program run by the Treasury Department, according to government filings.

    Clay Lacy Aviation, a private jet charter company based in Van Nuys, California, that serves wealthy executives and celebrities, received the government grant as part of the CARES Act, a $2 trillion federal stimulus package aimed at supporting jobs during the coronavirus crisis.

    The company appears to have received the largest grant of any private jet company on the list. The vast majority of the other 96 recipients of government funding or loans on the list are major commercial airlines, regional carriers or support companies. Other large private jet operators such as NetJets are not on the list.

    https://www.cnbc.com/2020/05/14/private-jet-company-owned-by-trump-donor-gets-27-million-bailout.html

    1. That is awesome. And it is going to go on for four more years after November. Sometimes you really know how to cheer things up around here shreek.

    2. Your point?

    3. How much did distributors of kiddie porn get?

    4. US taxpayers while rival Warren Buffett gets zero.

      Principals not principles eh? The whole bill was a disgusting corrupt give-away to their friends but you’re mad it didn’t include the right friends?

    5. You’ve been going on about how Buffet is such a great capitalist, I’m sure he won’t need the TrumpBux to keep things going.

  19. “As he fired up a doobie on national TV, ”

    Trump told reporters Monday that he has been taking hydroxychloroquine

    1. I see Leo beat me to it.

    2. “As he fired up a doobie took a long draw on his flavored vape pen on national TV, ”

  20. the newly formed Human Trafficking Bureau “will combat sex and labor trafficking by aggressively prosecuting” people who are engaged in neither

    , but who are potentially engaged in both.

  21. Obviously a bunch of evil Southern white supremacists trying to oppress African Americans.

  22. http://disq.us/p/29czfbs

    So now that the Democrats are running gropey Joe for President, the Times is trying to claim “believe all women” was just a right wing meme. They never said that. They even went back and edited the wikipedia entry on it from “Believe all Women” to “Believe Women”.

    It is terrifying how willing these people are to lie. There is no lie too shameless and obvious for them to tell.

    1. They’d see the ‘Bloodlands’ and conclude ‘what’s the problem?’ believing every single word Stalin told them.

    2. “believe all women” was just a right wing meme.

      In fairness, it did turn into one because they are just too easy to mock.

    3. what wikipedia entry?

  23. A lot of the right-wingers flouting the covid restrictions are the same people who shout “What don’t you understand about illegal!” when it comes to immigrants. Interesting.

    1. Interesting if you are an idiot who doesn’t understand the difference between a constitutional and an unconstitutional law I guess. Then, I suppose a lot of things are “interesting” to you.

      1. Yeah if ER really was smart he would have made it about executive order tariffs, instead of illegal immigration.

      2. Most (all?) lockdown rules are being imposed by state governments. If you have a legal theory of how the states are violating the federal Constitution, please explain your theory.

        1. Privileges and immunizes clause and the 1st Admendment. That was easy.

          1. He didn’t say federal. You realize states have constitutions too right? Also what Sometimes said.

            1. Eh. Meant as a response to whateveryousay.

            2. In his own follow-up argument below, John reaffirms that he was indeed referring to the federal Constitution

              1. Great. So you could have been wrong 2 different ways, but turns out it was just one.

          2. How does the first amendment apply to stay-at-home orders intended to protect public health.

            I’m not arguing that stay-at-home orders are good, but John just made a hand wave appeal to the Constitution.

            1. “or the right of the people peaceably to assemble,”

              Have you read it?

        2. It is called “the doctrine of incorporation” you half wit. The fundamental rights contained in the BOR apply to the states via the 14th Amendment.

          1. You are hand waving. Please explain which precise rights in the Bill of Rights are being violated by lockdown orders.

            1. The right to peaceably assemble is being violated.

            2. “You are hand waving”

              You say to John as you wave your hands knowing that you lost.

            3. First amendment right to peaceful assembly.

              Second where gun stores are/were closed. (I think maybe this has been fixed by now?)

              Fourth because you’re being treated guilty without evidence.

              Fifth deprivation of liberty and property without just compensation.

              6th & 7th regarding speedy trials and other prosecutorial rules.

              If you want to stretch, you could also say the 8th, as never before has a whole population been forced to stay home, violating cruel and unusual punishment.

          2. The fundamental rights contained in the BOR apply to the states via…the supremacy clause and their plain language. But, since those in power didn’t like that, we get them piecemeal via the ass backward incorporation doctrine.

    2. One is a crime while the other is ignoring an unconstitutional mandate.

      But nice try.

    3. /Eye roll.

    4. eyeroller
      May.19.2020 at 9:59 am
      “A lot of the right-wingers flouting the covid restrictions are the same people who shout “What don’t you understand about illegal!” when it comes to immigrants. Interesting.”

      A lot of fucking lefty ignoramuses show up here to lie about most everything. Interesting.

      1. ShareBlue must have gotten a cash influx.

    5. What about all the left-wingers, libertarians, centrists and apolitical people flouting the regulations?

    6. …and vice versa.

  24. An honest journalist would balance the stories of aggression with many locales having the sheriff’s defying the authoritarian politicians, see New Jersey yesterday.

    1. Something tells me the Sheriff wasn’t as defiant as we think. I hope I’m wrong, but the way he said “This is your official notice that you are not in compliance” led me to think that the administrative hammer will be coming down on that gym in the near future. The same has happened to other restaurants around the country- they aren’t shut down by the cops, but they lose their liquor license, and then get shut down.

      1. The barber in Michigan had his license revoked. He’s still cutting hair. Although liquor licenses are a whole different animal.

          1. I would imagine, and I could be wrong but doubt it, that distributors can not deliver to anyone that doesn’t have a liquor license.

            1. Just checked with a friend who works in beer distribution, and yes, if you lose your liquor license, they will not deliver to you.

    2. It was the Bellmawr PD, not the Camden County Sheriff. Not covered was that later in the day, the police returned and issued the gym a citation for violating the order.

      The gym owners said the police seemed to have been forced by someone higher up the food chain.

  25. I think we need to have a conversation about Bill Gates.

    That fucker has some really bad ideas in that autistic head of his.

    1. Agreed – and it’s odd – he has such great standing in most peoples eyes and yet he’s doing his best to waste that good will in order to have his voice heard on things he knows nothing about.

  26. Maybe Trump has lupus. It’s okay for that purpose, right?

  27. I’m sure no one knew that the US response to the virus was driven by taxes which are too low:

    “Faxes and email: Old technology slows COVID-19 response”
    […]
    ” On April 1, a researcher at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention emailed Nevada public health counterparts for lab reports on two travelers who had tested positive for the coronavirus. She asked Nevada to send those records via a secure network or a “password protected encrypted file” to protect the travelers’ privacy.
    The Nevada response: Can we just fax them over?
    You’d hardly know the U.S. invented the internet by the way its public health workers are collecting vital pandemic data. While health-care industry record-keeping is now mostly electronic, cash-strapped state and local health departments still rely heavily on faxes, email and spreadsheets to gather infectious disease data and share it with federal authorities….”
    https://abcnews.go.com/Health/wireStory/faxes-email-technology-slows-covid-19-response-70663206

    “cash-strapped” state and local governments! Wa’da’ya trying to kill granny, for pete’s sake? Paga!

    1. I think half the states invested in steam powered Hoyt-Clagwell data processing systems and the rest operate by mimeograph machines and Pony Express deliveries.

  28. https://lockdownsceptics.org

    Festinger wrote a book called When Prophecy Fails in which he hypothesises that the reason doomsday cultists always double down on their beliefs after they’ve been shown to be nonsense is to avoid the pain of admitting they were wrong and all their sacrifices were for nothing. He sets out five conditions that have to be present for this extreme form of cognitive dissonance to occur:

    There must be conviction
    There must be commitment to this conviction
    The conviction must be amenable to unequivocal disconfirmation
    Such unequivocal disconfirmation must occur
    Social support must be available subsequent to the disconfirmation
    Is this starting to sound familiar? As Willbourn points out, the sequence that Festinger wrote about more than 50 years ago is eerily reminiscent of what’s happening today: an apocalyptic prophecy was delivered from on high (“the science”), those who believed it radically altered their behaviour, the prophecy turned out not to be true, but instead of abandoning their doom-mongering the believers have become even more fervent, attacking anyone who points out the gap between fantasy and reality as dangerous heretics (“fake news”, “misinformation”, “conspiracy theories”, etc).

  29. https://twitter.com/JesseKellyDC/status/1262727791172337664

    “Why are we losing Americans to coronavirus when we should be using them in some third world dump I want to invade?” -Mitt Romney, probably

  30. “Infectious disease doctor Tim Lahey says the president is taking hydroxychloroquine because he fell victim to a “common misconception” that a drug in testing can’t hurt.”

    Is this “infection disease doctor” falling victim to a common misconception about having ESP or did President Trump actually say that, “a drug in testing can’t hurt”?

    President Trump has been in office for almost three and a half years now, and his critics have been crying wolf every day since then. You’d think they would have caught on that only the stupid, the fanatics, and the gullible are still bothering to come running anymore.

    If they keep crying wolf for too long after the townspeople stop reacting, we should probably start to wonder about their mental stability. I walked past an obviously mentally disturbed homeless guy screaming about Trump the other day on my way into the grocery store. If he’d been cleaned up and put on television, what he was saying could have passed for standard punditry on most any news broadcast these days.

    Everyone was just ignoring him.

    It’s hard to believe the biggest difference between psychologically disturbed homeless people screaming about the president and the news media is just a shower and the way they’re dressed, but there you have it.

    1. Incredible that anyone should have anything to say about what medications the POTUS takes. It is just Brown being a birdbrain and showing her severe case of OrangeManBaditis.

  31. https://twitter.com/nytimesworld/status/1262677128816066560

    Over the last 2 decades, China unleashed a global lending spree, showering countries with hundreds of billions of dollars, in an effort to expand its influence. Now, countries are increasingly telling Beijing they can’t pay the money back.

    1. China knows they can’t send their Marines in and start exercising self-help in satisfying those debts, right? It’s not the 1920s anymore, and these countries aren’t the Dominican Republic.

    2. I like how they call it a “lending spree,” as if the whole point of those actions and things like the belt-and-road initiative weren’t a means for the Chinks to build leverage over these places as a form of economic colonialism.

      The average American would likely be shocked at just how deep China has its tentacles in various third-world shitholes.

      1. Including Latin America. Doesn’t the CCP (through Hutchison Wampoa) basically own the port of Lázaro Cárdenas?

        1. Apparently, what killed the belt-and-road in Venezuela was that Maduro balked at the requirement that the laborers be Chinese workers–which is likely how BatCoof got spread in Italy.

      2. Where do you suppose they got the idea?

        1. The British?

    3. We can build and rent China one of our money printing presses for $4 trillion a year. Once they figure out that everyone can be made whole just by firing those babies up, they won’t need to pressure third world countries to pay them back. Everybody wins!

      – The Fed

  32. Black cop showing off for the white cop.

    1. They’ll thrown you down to the blacktop.

  33. Governor of New Jersey.

    https://twitter.com/GovMurphy/status/1262433184358240256

    #COVID19 has changed everything.

    After 9/11, new security measures were put into place that we were not accustomed to. Those practices are now part of our routines.

    The aftermath of #COVID19 will be similar. Social distancing will still be the rule of the days ahead.

    1. fuck off slaver

    2. What about forcing the contagious into Nursing Homes? New Best Practice?

      1. For politicians worried about the deficit it would have the added benefit of thinning out the Social Security rolls.

  34. Reason and their TDS

    HCQ is not dangerous. Is Tylenol dangerous? Is peanut butter? You’ll find more instances of bad reactions to those proven dangerous substances.

    Their is ample evidence HCQ works. From all over t(e world. Which is why it is the world’s preferred protocol treatment and prophylaxis for COVID

    Quit being a Resistance mouthpiece and bleating idiotic tripe

    1. It is inexcusable for an ostensibly libertarian publication like Reason to even hint that a grown man who is taking any medication under the direction of their doctor is doing something wrong or improper.

      For the past 50 years the sine qua non of libertarianism has been the right of responsible adults to ingest whatever chemical substance they wish. Yet TDS is so powerful we see ENB turning into Drug Warrior Karen.

      1. Fvck her

    2. Well Tylenol is dangerous, with a ridiculously small window between therapeutic dose and liver toxicity. I don’t think it’d make it out of FDA certification trials if they had to meet them today. I refuse to take the stuff, but then again I drink a little. If you’re a teetotaler, it’s not as bad a problem.

      I wouldn’t take HCQ willingly either, going by people I knew who took it as malaria prophylaxis, and weren’t enamoured with the side effects. If I were 75, might be a different story.

      1. Ah ok so you know dick about acetaminophen Overt

  35. More evidence that as culture war issues faded into the background, capitalism vs. socialism has become the dominant issue in the Republican vs. Democrat divide:

    The House package included a second, larger round of payments. Individuals would again get $1,200 in nontaxable income from the Internal Revenue Service, but the payment per child would rise to $1,200 from $500. Groups excluded from the first round would get money, including college students, adult dependents, and households with undocumented immigrants where not everyone has a Social Security number.

    . . . .

    “The payroll tax cut from an economic standpoint is so much more efficient,” said Mr. Brady, the top Republican on the Ways and Means Committee. President Trump has said he wants to suspend the payroll tax, which would do little directly to help the unemployed but would reduce the cost of hiring and keeping workers.”

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/next-wave-of-coronavirus-stimulus-payments-hinges-on-debate-over-reopening-economy-11589880603?

    The bill that passed the House has practically no chance of becoming law. The only reason the cash payments made it last time was because the Republicans in the Senate weren’t on board with limiting the “stimulus” to the employed by letting them keep everything they earn–and the Democrats in the House wouldn’t support a bill that only helps people directly if they have a job. What’s the point of being a Democrat [socialist] if you aren’t forcing people who work to pay for those who don’t?

    The Democrats in the House haven’t changed their position substantially (although the House bill that passed only barely squeaked by), and President Trump is still fighting to suspend payroll taxes so that people can keep what they earn. The thing that’s different now is that Senate Republicans, many of them concerned about spending, are now siding with President Trump on suspending payroll taxes. Whatever else letting people keep what they earn is, it isn’t spending.

    Oh, and if there’s a better way to describe the competing ideologies behind these two conflicting proposals other than “socialist” and “capitalist”, I don’t know what they would be.

  36. Sylvia Driskell, a 66-year-old woman from Auburn, Nebraska, filed a federal lawsuit last week titled Driskell v. Homosexuals. Driskell, acting as her own lawyer and the ambassador of “God, And His, Son Jesus Christ,”

    If she’s an ambassador, shouldn’t she be filing a diplomatic protest with the State Department? It should be interesting if the judge asks he to produce her diplomatic credentials.

    1. >>God, And His, Son

      needs paralegal for help w/commas.

    2. I’m guessing the Holy Ghost wanted no part of this? Not gonna lie, I kinda want to see how this places out, like watching a car crash in slow motion

  37. process service cost for “all gay people” astronomical.

    1. Tony will service them all for free.

      1. dude got scarce. wonder where he is no I don’t.

        1. His last Grindr date invited him to dinner. It was a Jeffrey Dahmer recipe

  38. so someone mentioned this on the Brickbat I think, but I haven’t seen it here, a CCP backed politician had security throw pro-democracy members of Hong Kong’s parliament out of the chamber right before they voted on their new chairperson. Unsurprisingly, CCP-backed Starry Lee was voted in as the chairperson “unanimously”.

    I wonder how well that’s gonna sit for the Hong Kongian on the street

  39. Hydroxychloroquine has been used as an anti-malarial drug for decades across vast swaths of the planet. Okay, yes it has some documented side-effects. So does water. Calling it “dangerous” is rather a significant overstatement.

    It’s also medically meaningless because as any good pathologist will tell you, “the dose makes the poison.” Chemotherapy drugs are some of the most toxic chemicals in existence, yet we prescribe them regularly in the right circumstances – sometimes even prophylactically.

    1. Adjuvant or neoadjuvant chemotherapy are somewhat familiar to me.

      Watching what has been published thus far in chloroquine and derivative drugs as a treatment or preventive drug in vivo I cannot find much convincing positive evidence. Perhaps it will.

      One interesting thing about them is even in proven use for RA and other autoimmune diseases it is not so clear how they work.

      So never miss an opportunity to try and learn something every day.

      I found this review. It has to do with pulmonology critical care in patients severely ill from this virus. It has been suggested that patients can be placed in prone position and may do not need intubation.

      This article discusses what that entails. One insight is that the decision is medical, not physiological. There is no such thing as a specific number you can use in the decision tree.

      From the article for those who do not wish to read the whole thing.

      “Can the prone position prevent intubation? This question is essential, but intubation is a medical decision, not a physiological state. Improvement in oxygenation during prone positioning may prevent clinicians from making decisions about intubation solely based on hypoxemia. This is potentially a good outcome, but clinical assessment of work of breathing is essential in this context to avoid delayed intubation with eventually poor outcome. “

      https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2766290

  40. Your periodic reminder that any asshole can file a lawsuit write Reason Roundup.

    1. And they usually do.

      1. Which explains why Robbie immediately stomped on it

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