Good News

Periodically I post an article that I do not fully understand. This is one of those articles. Hopefully the scientific types who read this blog will understand it. However, I can understand enough to know that this is really good news.

Yesterday The New York Post reported the following:

Scientists at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine have isolated “the smallest biological molecule” that “completely and specifically neutralizes” the virus that causes COVID-19.

The antibody component is 10 times smaller than a full-size antibody, and has been used to create the drug Ab8, shared in the report published by the researchers in the journal Cell on Monday. The drug is seen as a potential preventative against SARS-CoV-2.

According to the report, the drug has been “highly effective in preventing and treating” SARS-CoV-2 infections in mice and hamsters during tests. The drug also reportedly does not bind to human cells, which suggests it will not have negative side effects in people.

“Ab8 not only has potential as therapy for COVID-19, but it also could be used to keep people from getting SARS-CoV-2 infections,” said co-author John Mellors, chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases at Pitt and UPMC. “Antibodies of larger size have worked against other infectious diseases and have been well tolerated, giving us hope that it could be an effective treatment for patients with COVID-19 and for protection of those who have never had the infection and are not immune.”

This is wonderful news. Hopefully it will result in a better understanding of how all viruses work and how to combat them.

How Voter Fraud By Mail Works

On Saturday, The New York Post posted an article exposing how mail-in voter fraud works.

The article reports:

Mail-in ballots have become the latest flashpoint in the 2020 elections. While President Trump and the GOP warn of widespread manipulation of the absentee vote that will swell with COVID polling restrictions, many Democrats and their media allies have dismissed such concerns as unfounded.

But the political insider, who spoke on condition of anonymity because he fears prosecution, said fraud is more the rule than the exception. His dirty work has taken him through the weeds of municipal and federal elections in Paterson, Atlantic City, Camden, Newark, Hoboken and Hudson County and his fingerprints can be found in local legislative, mayoral and congressional races across the Garden State. Some of the biggest names and highest office holders in New Jersey have benefited from his tricks, according to campaign records The Post reviewed.

“An election that is swayed by 500 votes, 1,000 votes — it can make a difference,” the tipster said. “It could be enough to flip states.”

The article explains the method used:

The ballot has no specific security features — like a stamp or a watermark — so the insider said he would just make his own ballots.

“I just put [the ballot] through the copy machine and it comes out the same way,” the insider said.

But the return envelopes are “more secure than the ballot. You could never recreate the envelope,” he said. So they had to be collected from real voters.

He would have his operatives fan out, going house to house, convincing voters to let them mail completed ballots on their behalf as a public service. The fraudster and his minions would then take the sealed envelopes home and hold them over boiling water.

“You have to steam it to loosen the glue,” said the insider.

He then would remove the real ballot, place the counterfeit ballot inside the signed certificate, and reseal the envelope.

“Five minutes per ballot tops,” said the insider.

The insider said he took care not to stuff the fake ballots into just a few public mailboxes, but sprinkle them around town. That way he avoided the attention that foiled a sloppy voter-fraud operation in a Paterson, NJ, city council race this year, where 900 ballots were found in just three mailboxes.

“If they had spread them in all different mailboxes, nothing would have happened,” the insider said.

…“You have a postman who is a rabid anti-Trump guy and he’s working in Bedminster or some Republican stronghold … He can take those [filled-out] ballots, and knowing 95% are going to a Republican, he can just throw those in the garbage.”

In some cases, mail carriers were members of his “work crew,” and would sift ballots from the mail and hand them over to the operative.

In 2017, more than 500 mail-in ballots in New York City never arrived to the Board of Elections for races that November—leaving hundreds disenfranchised. They eventually were discovered in April 2018. “For some undetermined reason, some baskets of mail that were bound to the New York City Board of Elections were put off to the side at the Brooklyn processing facility,” city elections boss Michael Ryan said at the time of discovery.

The article continues with details on how those intent on voter fraud target nursing homes and states without voter ID laws. Please follow the link above to read the entire article. It is frightening to know that this has gone on for years. It is time for voter fraud to end.

 

This Is Over The Top

The New York Post reported today on some recent remarks by Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi.

The article reports:

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi went off on President Trump and Republican lawmakers, describing them as “enemies of the state” who are trying to interfere with the election by hindering Americans’ ability to vote by mail this November.

“We take an oath to protect and defend the Constitution from all enemies, foreign and domestic. And sadly, the domestic enemies to our voting system and honoring our Constitution are right at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue with their allies in the Congress of the United States,” Pelosi said on MSNBC in an interview Monday.

The article includes the White House response:

“Her bizarre, baseless conspiracy theories are harmful to our democracy. President Trump is focused on ensuring a fair election as he continues to lead this Nation safely out of this global pandemic, bringing the country together with a message focused on American greatness and a safe and prosperous future for all,” White House spokesman Judd Deere said in a statement.

Democrats have seized on a series of cost-cutting measures by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy as proof that he is trying to hobble the agency, leaving it unprepared for the expected onslaught of mail-in ballots from voters who fear catching the coronavirus if they go to the polls in person.

Trump, in a speech to delegates at the Republican National Convention following a roll call vote giving him the presidential nomination, turned the tables on Democrats and alleged that they trying to steal the election by encouraging voters to mail in their ballots.

The words of Speaker Pelosi are not helpful. I believe that she owes the President, the Republicans, and Trump voters an apology. Trying to prevent voter fraud does not make you an enemy of the state.

Peaceful?

Yesterday The New York Post reported that federal officers in Portland suffered 113 eye injuries while guarding a courthouse from activists armed with powerful lasers.

The article reports:

“We’ve had a number of officers who have days-long blindness. So far they’ve all kind of come back, if you will,” Cuccinelli (Ken Cuccinelli, deputy director of the Department of Homeland Security) said. “But you also get what’s called flash blindness. Think of it as the old Kodak cameras where you get that blue spot and you can’t quite see your entire field of vision for a period.”

Cuccinelli brought a high-powered laser as a prop to a Senate subcommittee hearing hosted by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) focused on Antifa violence during protests against the killing of George Floyd by Minnesota police. He said the devices could be purchased on Amazon.com.

The novel laser attacks drew attention last month as President Trump deployed federal officers to bolster the besieged federal court building. White House Press Secretary Kayleigh McEnany said at a briefing in July that three officers were believed to have been permanently blinded.

Although Cuccinelli said all officers recovered their sight, he said activists appear to be aiming to maximize damage.

That’s not protest–that’s assault and needs to be dealt with harshly.

The article continues:

Democrats at the hearing largely described violence attributed to Antifa, or “anti-fascist,” activists as a distraction from misconduct of police and what they said was the improper deployment of federal agents to Portland.

“What we’ve seen in Portland, Oregon, is peaceful protesters in need of protection from federal officers,” said Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii). “The hearing we should be having is one called the right of the people to peaceably assemble without being beaten up by unidentifiable federal agents.”

Cuccinelli said some protesters are indeed peaceful, but others aren’t.

“This is sort of the Portland formula: there’s peaceful protesting until 10 or 11 o’clock, and then they go away. And maybe some of them come back, but the group that comes back is A.) much bigger, but also they come back for violence,” Cuccinelli said.

I really think that Senator Hirono needs to listed to her own words. Peaceful protesters do not attempt to blind police. They do not set fire to buildings and shoot fireworks at people. It is becoming very obvious that members of the Democrat party are not willing to stand up for the rights of ordinary people who simply want to live in peace. What about the rights of the people who live in the neighborhoods where these riots are taking place? Are they not entitled to protection from the violence of the rioters?

Elections Have Consequences

Yesterday The New York Post posted an article about the recent Democrat primary races in New York State.

The article reports:

A half-dozen insurgent candidates in Brooklyn and Queens — some backed by the Democratic Socialists of America — toppled veteran incumbents in Democratic primary races, including close allies of Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie (D-Bronx).

With Heastie’s backing, the Democratic Assembly Campaign Committee poured more than $400,000 combined to prop up 46-year veteran Joe Lentol, Felix Ortiz and Walter Mosley in Brooklyn and Aravella Simotas, Michael Den Dekker and Michael Miller in Queens.

They all lost.

Insurgent Zohran Mamdani, who defeated four-term incumbent Simotas in the 36th Assembly District covering Astoria, said in a tweet: “Socialism won.”

He was endorsed by the DSA.

The DACC donated $125,000 to Simotas’ re-election campaign.

So what does this mean for the State of New York? Emily Gallagher, one of the socialists elected stated, “I’m ready to get to work.” She has already stated that she would push to raise income taxes on the “top one percent” to preserve services, adding, “We need the revenue to survive.” Someone needs to tell her about the Laffer Curve.

The article concludes:

Meanwhile, five other progressive Democrats backed by the WFP (Working Families Party) and other progressive groups are expected to win open Assembly seats.

The newcomers are expected to raise hell, but Albany watchers said the jury is out on how much impact they will have in a body with more than 100 Democrats — including many moderates representing suburban and upstate districts.

“Clearly the candidates who won have a more liberal, progressive agenda,” said University of Albany political science professor Bruce Gyory.

He said he believes Heastie’s position as speaker is secure.

Heastie personally called all the winning insurgents to congratulate them.

All the candidates are running in heavily Democratic districts and are expected to prevail in the general election.

There is actually some good news here. A group is arising out of the Democrat party that will eventually form a third party (to the left of traditional Democrats). As the results of their policies become obvious, they will lose votes. If any of the tax increases and other policies of these recently elected Democrats are put in place, I predict that New York State will lose its tax base.

According to a Forbes Magazine article in January 2020, New York was already leading the nation in the number of people leaving the state:

Actually, I am surprised that California did not make the top ten states losing population.

 

Saving Money By Refusing To Support Organizations That Don’t Do Their Job

Hot Air posted an article yesterday about President Trump’s decision to withdraw from the World Health Organization (WHO).

The article reports:

The Trump administration is withdrawing the United States from the World Health Organization. The administration submitted a letter to the UN but the letter itself hasn’t been made public yet. The Washington Post reports that the U.S. needs to give a year’s notice before withdrawing.

…WHO really has favored China’s version of events during the pandemic. Just last month the AP published a story revealing that China was aware early on that China was slow-walking information about the virus. Just a few days ago WHO revised its official timeline about when China notified it about the existence of a cluster of pneumonia cases in Wuhan.

We’re only hearing the very start of this now. It appears congressional Democrats are going to attempt to get involved in this decision. At a minimum they are going to try to drive a few new cycles off it. Get ready to hear the phrase “in the midst of a pandemic” 10,000 times.

The WHO (like the rest of the United Nations) has become political, ineffective, and unnecessarily expensive.

On May 20, 2019, The New York Post reported:

The World Health Organization spent nearly $192 million on travel expenses last year, with staffers sometimes breaking the agency’s own rules by traveling in business class, booking expensive last-minute tickets and traveling without the required approvals, according to internal documents obtained by The Associated Press.

The abuses could spook potential donors and partners as the organization begins its week-long annual meeting Monday in Geneva, seeking increased support to fight a devastating outbreak of Ebola in Congo and other deadly diseases including polio, malaria and measles.

The nearly $192 million is down 4 percent from 2017, when the agency pledged to rein in travel abuses following an AP investigation.

The WHO has lost its way as an organization helping the world fight health issues. The coronavirus revealed the WHO as simply a mouthpiece for Chinese propaganda that allowed the virus to become a pandemic. We would have been better off following our own instincts than listening to the WHO. Remember, the WHO complained when President Trump shut down air travel from China to America. That alone saved thousands of lives. The WHO opposed it. That tells us all we need to know. It is past time to leave the WHO. I am sorry that we are required to wait a year to actually do it.

A Very Costly Decision

The decision to send coronavirus patients into nursing homes was a very expensive decision. In early June The New York Post reported that nearly one fourth of the deaths from the coronavirus occurred in nursing homes. More recent statistics show a higher percentage. A number of states required nursing homes to accept patients with the disease after they were discharged from the hospital. In New York, this is particularly aggravating because beds were available at the Javits Center and the hospital ship that was docked in the harbor. Both had been refitted to allow them to take patients with the virus. There was also the hospital set up by Samaritan’s Purse in Central Park. There were other options than nursing homes. The decision to send the coronavirus patients back to nursing homes in New York was made by Governor Cuomo.

Yesterday The New York Post posted an article about Governor Cuomo’s decision.

The article reports on Governor Cuomo’s latest efforts to avoid responsibility for that decision:

His latest bid is simply scandalous. Cuomo has the nerve to blame grieving family members and heroic nursing-home staffers, charging they were the ones who infected and killed as many 12,000 elderly and helpless residents.

Desperation is no excuse. This is shamelessness on stilts. And it is heartlessly cruel to blame the victims.

The outrageous claims came in a report released by state Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker, along with hospital administrators. Conveniently, the report they prepared absolves all of them of any responsibility. What a coincidence!

Coverups don’t get any more brazen. Or less credible.

The fact remains that Zucker wrote, with obvious hospital ­input, the March 25 order forcing all nursing homes to take people infected with the coronavirus. It ultimately resulted in 6,326 sick patients being transferred from hospitals to nursing homes between March 25 and May 8.

The homes and other long-term-care facilities were given no warning, advice or help in preparing to receive those patients. There were no inspections to learn whether the facilities had space and staff to segregate COVID patients from the long-term residents, most of whom were especially vulnerable to the virus.

The order was so flawed that it even blocked the facilities from asking if those being transferred had tested positive for the virus. All those demands run counter to federal recommendations and requirements.

The article continues:

While there may have been isolated cases of infected, asymptomatic visitors, the fact remains that the nearly 600 facilities involved did not have significant numbers of coronavirus cases and deaths until the days and weeks following the March 25 order. Some had zero cases until then.

The insistence that the order played no role won’t wash. For one thing, Cuomo’s office claims the Zucker report was “peer reviewed,” but only by organizations that have a stake in its conclusions.

For another, in addition to The Post, which first recognized the lethality of the order, numerous other media outlets have independently confirmed the consequences. In this case, that’s peer review worth the name.

Indeed, it became so obvious that the March 25 order was a fatal blunder that Cuomo effectively rescinded it on May 10. Then, with a quick pivot and a grinding of gears, he shifted into an ­unconscionable hunt for scapegoats.

And hasn’t stopped. Some days, there is more than one. Trump is a frequent target, with Cuomo saying recently that the president “makes up facts, he makes up science.”

He also accused the president of being in “denial of the problem” and added, “He is facilitating the virus, he is enabling the virus.”

If that sounds familiar, it’s because many people say exactly the same things about Cuomo.

It is understood that Governor Cuomo wants to run for President. I don’t know how he could pull that off in 2020, but we can expect to see him on the Democrat ticket in 2024. He needs to put the nursing home death scandal behind him before he runs. I am not sure that a biased report by the State Health Commissioner can accomplish that.

Upholding The Constitution

The New York Post is reporting today that the Supreme Court has ruled that Presidential electors must cast their votes for the person who won the majority of the votes in their state.

The article reports:

The ruling, just under four months before the 2020 election, leaves in place laws in 32 states and the District of Columbia that bind their share of the 538 electors to vote for the states’ popular-vote winner.

The states’ Electors almost always do so anyway.

The unanimous decision in the “faithless elector” case was a defeat for those who want to change the Electoral College, and who believed a win would lead to presidential elections based on the popular or total number of votes.

But it was a win for state election officials who feared that giving more power to electors to make their own choice would cause chaos — and even lead to attempted bribery.

Justice Elena Kagan wrote for the court that a state may instruct “electors that they have no ground for reversing the vote of millions of its citizens. That direction accords with the Constitution — as well as with the trust of a Nation that here, We the People rule.”

The justices had scheduled arguments for the spring so they could resolve the issue before the election, rather than amid a potential political crisis after the country votes.

This was a unanimous decision. When was the last time all the justices on the Supreme Court agreed on anything?

This decision makes sense if you understand the purpose of the Electoral College. The Electoral College was put in place by our Founding Fathers so that a group of densely populated states would not be able to elect a President without the support of less populated states. Without the Electoral College, New York, California, New Jersey, and Connecticut would elect our President. Smaller states would never see a candidate, nor would their votes count. That is what the Electoral College was put in place to prevent.

President Trump And The Black Vote

After hearing the protesters at the Independence Day boat parade yell, “What do we want? Trump dead,” I wondered how much of the black population of America is aware of the things President Trump has done to help the black community move forward.

Yesterday The New York Post posted an article detailing some of the things President Trump has done to help the black community.

The article notes:

Back home in the US, African Americans were experiencing the best economy we have ever seen: Unemployment for our racial group was the lowest in recorded history, black wages were rapidly increasing for the first time in decades, and people who’d been out of work long-term were being hired and suddenly able to take their families on vacations for the first time in years.

…I personally do not agree with everything President Trump says or does, and I often find myself on national TV as a conservative pundit saying exactly that. But I would be lying if I didn’t tell you that Trump has been one of the most impactful presidents for African Americans from a policy perspective — and that’s what matters.

His recent police-reform executive order, the First Step Act, released thousands of people from jail (90 percent of whom were black). He has promoted “opportunity zones” that incentivized private investment into marginalized communities, and also increased federal funding to historically black colleges and universities by 17 percent — a total exceeding $100 million, more than any president in history. Meanwhile, the Obama administration infamously removed a two-year Bush-administration program that annually funded $85 million directly to these prized institutions.

As I mention in my book, “Taken For Granted,” during the 2016 election Trump did something few Republicans had the courage to do — he targeted the black vote and spoke directly to African-American issues.

He was not afraid of saying the “wrong thing” (and, yes, he sometimes did) while achieving the ultimate goal of creating real dialogue and opportunity in communities largely ignored by both parties. In return, he received only 8 percent of the black vote generally, and 12 percent of black men. (By comparison, Romney earned 6 percent of the black vote.) But after three years in office, having delivered on so many issues for black voters, Trump’s support among black men had risen to 24 percent, according to one February poll.

President Trump is gaining support among black voters who are actually paying attention to what the President is doing. That may be the reason the Democrats are working so hard to stir up racial tension. The deep state has a vested interest in preventing the re-election of President Trump. (see previous article). The Washington establishment is willing to use any weapon at their disposal, regardless of the cost to Americans. Power is the goal, and any method to gain it will be used.

Please read the entire article at The New York Post to see the details of what President Trump has done to help all Americans be successful.

This Could Get Very Interesting

The New York Post is reporting today that longtime Jeffrey Epstein associate Ghislaine Maxwell was arrested Thursday on a six-count indictment charging her with grooming young girls for sex.

The article reports:

The British socialite, 58, was arrested by the FBI in New Hampshire around 8:30 a.m., sources told The Post.

The just-unsealed indictment charges stem from Maxwell’s role “in the sexual exploitation and abuse of multiple minor girls by Jeffrey Epstein” as early as 1994, court papers say.

“The victims were as young as 14 years old when they were groomed and abused by Maxwell and Epstein, both of whom knew that certain victims were in fact under the age of 18,” the indictment says.

She is specifically accused of grooming three underage victims for sex with Epstein in places including his Upper East Side townhouse, Florida, New Mexico and London.

Maxwell is charged with six counts — conspiracy to entice minors to travel to engage in illegal sex acts, enticement of a minor to travel to engage in illegal sex acts, conspiracy to transport minors with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity, transportation of a minor with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity and two counts of perjury.

There are a few things to note here. Maxwell was arrested by the FBI–not any local jurisdiction. The charges will be announced by the US Attorney’s Office in Manhattan today. Her testimony, if she chooses to reveal what she knows, could be very damaging to many people in powerful positions. Hopefully she will be better protected than Jeffrey Epstein was.

When You Only See What You Want To See

There was a dust-up recently in NASCAR about a noose found in the pit area of NASCAR’s only black driver. The media was all over it. The FBI was called in (as they should have been). Well, things are not always what they appear to be. It seems that the noose was actually a loop used to open the garage door. The noose had been there since before the driver was assigned to that garage. Yesterday The New York Post posted an article with a few observations on the overreaction to the situation.

The article notes:

For those who have somehow missed it, over the weekend NASCAR dramatically and declaratively announced that Wallace had been the target of a “noose” found in his garage at the Talladega speedway in Alabama. This was just before a high-profile race on that track that took place on Monday.

When I first heard of the story, I assumed there must be a photo of the noose in question, and was very curious to see how someone could be both so incredibly awful, and well as insanely stupid, as to do something so horrifically racist to a black driver. It quickly became obvious, however, that there was no public photo, and my spidey senses began to tell me that something about this story was just not correct.

…However, the lack of a photo was so inexplicable that it appeared obvious to me that this could have been a misunderstanding (under the presumption that if the noose/scene was really unambiguous, we absolutely would have seen a photo immediately). In these times of extreme racial tension, and after NASCAR had just announced it was completely banning the Confederate flag from its events, it seemed to me that someone may have seen a simple rope with an open knot at the end of it, panicked, and then once the “noose” narrative got started, there was no way to contain it, especially in this current media atmosphere. (For context, there have been two noose stories here in California over just the past week that have turned out not to be hate crimes.)

The article concludes:

Will there be any accountability for this enormous and easily avoided act of media malpractice? Will there be any apology to NASCAR fans and the people of Alabama who were presumed to be racist enough to commit, or at least enable, such a heinous act? Will there be any lessons learned by the news media?

Sadly, but predictably, the answers to these important questions will likely all be negative. No one in the major media gets fired for being wrong in interpreting a news event anymore, at least not if they are incorrect in the woke direction, and the ratings for the story are good.

What happened here will surely happen again, especially in the sports world. Largely because those in the elite media, particularly white males, are so incredibly terrified of being canceled for not being woke enough that they would much rather go along with the media herd and be proven wrong, than leave the protection of the media mob, and risk being run over, even if (especially?) they are right.

I’m glad to hear that there was no noose. I am also sorry to see that the media jumped on the story so quickly.

I’m Not Convinced This Was An Accident

The Washington Times is reporting today that three New York City police officers were served drinks laced with bleach at a Shake Shack at 200 Broadway in Manhattan.

The article reports:

The New York City Police Department found “no criminality” by Shake Shack employees after three officers drank milkshakes believed to be contaminated with bleach.

The NYPD reached that conclusion early Tuesday after a “thorough investigation” by detectives in Manhattan.

I’m sorry–I just don’t believe that. How many other people had drinks with bleach in them? How many other people got sick after ordering drinks from the Shake Shack? I am not impressed by the investigation by the detectives in Manhattan.

The article concludes:

The PBA (Police Benevolent Association) said the officer had been “on protest detail.”

The group advised all members “to carefully inspect any prepared food item they purchase while on duty.”

“When New York City police officers cannot even take meal without coming under attack, it is clear that [the] environment in which we work has deteriorated to a critical level.

“We cannot afford to let our guard down for even a moment,” the PBA advised in bold-face type.

According to WCBS, the Shake Shack employees were being questioned, but there have been no arrests.

Just last week, Shake Shack bragged about its contributions to those protesting the police around the country and calling for departments to be defunded.

“Last week, we shared the immediate actions we’re taking to become better allies, not only for our Black colleagues, but for the entire Black community. That included a $100K donation to” the Equal Justice Initiative, which the restaurant chain said it “stand[s] behind the important work” such as “ending mass incarceration + excessive punishment.”

On June 12th, The New York Post reported that two National Guardsmen who were deployed to Washington, D.C., during the George Floyd protests were delivered a pizza containing shards of glass in the dough and cheese.

There are a lot of crazies out there. Everyone needs to be careful.

 

Excuses, Excuses, Excuses…

On Wednesday, The New York Post posted an article about a recent statement by New York Times reporter Nikole Hannah-Jones.

The article reports:

New York Times reporter Nikole Hannah-Jones argued that rioters destroying property is “not violence” — and referring to the crimes as such goes against what’s moral.

“Destroying property, which can be replaced, is not violence. To use the same language to describe those two things, I think is really not moral to do that,” Hannah-Jones, who is Pulitzer Prize winner, told CBSN.

Hannah-Jones, who writes for the Times Magazine, said the language should be reserved for crimes such as the killing of George Floyd, a black man who died in Minneapolis after a white cop, Derek Chauvin, held his knee on Floyd’s neck for several minutes.

“Violence is when an agent of the state kneels on a man’s neck until all of the life is leached out of his body,” Hannah-Jones told the outlet.

Her comments come as cities across the nation have been locked in days of heated protests over the death of Floyd — some of which have resulted in vandalism, looting and arson.

“Any reasonable person would say we shouldn’t be destroying other people’s property, but these are not reasonable times,” she said.

I wonder if she would make that same statement if her family had a business that was destroyed or if the looters came to her residence. What happened to George Floyd was a crime. Committing another crime does not make it right.

Saving The Taxpayers Money While Draining The Swamp

Yesterday The New York Post reported that National Security Advisor Robert O’Brien has dramatically cut down the size of the National Security Council.

The article reports:

The job cuts are an attempt to streamline the foreign policy outfit, which ballooned under the Obama administration to almost 240 staffers — still up from 115 during Condoleezza Rice’s tenure as George W. Bush’s NSA in the early 2000s, a senior White House official said.

By the end of this summer, the NSC will consist of just 105 staff, the official said.

The changes come as O’Brien — Trump’s fourth national security adviser — tries to remake the forum in his image after replacing fiery predecessor John Bolton, who was ousted last October following a high-profile dispute with the president.

…Trump reportedly instructed O’Brien to substantially reduce the size of the agency shortly after he arrived at the White House — an effort O’Brien detailed in a Washington Post opinion piece.

At the time, the foreign policy operation was at the center of an impeachment inquiry sparked by a whistleblower complaint related to the agency’s work.

“Under previous administrations, the NSC more than doubled in size and duplicated many of the functions of DoD, State and the intelligence community,” O’Brien told The Post on Tuesday.

“Under President Trump, we have brought the NSC back to its proper size and role as a coordinating body,” he continued.

“To make that happen we require the best leaders, many of whom are women. Our goal is always to find the very best professionals for each job, and I am very proud of the team we have assembled at the NSC to further President Trump’s agenda,” he said.

In 2016, Republicans in both houses of Congress introduced bills that would have slashed the NSC staff to no more than 150 people — legislation the Obama administration opposed.

Created by President Harry Truman in 1947, the NSC is an interagency panel that advises and assists the president on national security and foreign policy.

It should also be noted that the President also cut 70 Obama-era holdovers from the National Security Agency in February.

The deep state is slowly being removed.

This Definitely Adds A New Twist To The Discussion

On Thursday, The New York Post posted an article about an interesting discovery related to the coronavirus.

The article reports:

Coronavirus was detected in Massachusetts sewage at higher levels than expected, suggesting there are many more undiagnosed patients than previously known, according to a new study.

Researchers from biotech startup Biobot Analytics collected samples from a wastewater facility for an unnamed metropolitan area in late March, according to a report Tuesday on medRxiv.

The virus has a very specific genetic make-up that allows scientists to identify it.

The article details the results of the study:

“Even if those viral particles are no longer active or capable of infecting humans, they may still carry genetic material that can be detected using an approach called PCR (polymerase chain reaction), which amplifies the genetic signal many orders of magnitude, creating billions of copies of the genome for each starting virus,” Alm told the outlet.

The researchers, along with a team from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Harvard, and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, analyzed the samples and found the number of coronavirus particles equated with 2,300 people being infected with the virus.

 But at the time of tests, there were only 446 confirmed cases in the region, according to the study.

“It was interesting that our estimation was definitely higher than the number of confirmed cases in the area,” said Mariana Matus, CEO and co-founder of Biobot, according to Stat News.

The good news in this study is that we may be developing ‘herd immunity’ to this virus that will make it much less dangerous in the future. When you combine that fact with the fact that we may have a cure, this is very good news for everyone who has been impacted by either the virus or the shutdown.

Much Of America Is Focused On Solving The Problem Rather Than Politicizing It

On March 30, The New York Post posted an article about the ways that Americans are fighting the pandemic of the coronavirus. The title of the article is, “Answering the coronavirus: exponential American innovation.”

The article reports:

America has long led the world in innovation, and the coronavirus won’t change that. Indeed, US inventors and entrepreneurs are rising to the occasion, jumping in to fill urgent needs.

With ramped-up testing the best way to discover who has the virus and so learn what the fatality rate really is, the news from Abbott Laboratories couldn’t be better. The Food and Drug Administration gave emergency-use approval to Abbott’s new test, the fastest available at the point of care: It can deliver a positive result in five minutes and a negative result in under 15.

…Even more promising are serology tests that can find antibodies in a finger-prick of blood — proving that you had COVID-19 even without any symptoms. That will make it easier to track contacts and clear some people to stop isolating. Biomerica has developed one that can deliver results in 10 minutes at a cost of $10; it’s already shipping kits to Europe but needs emergency-use Food and Drug Administration approval for US use. (Get going, FDA.)

The list goes on. Startup BioIntelliSense has developed the BioSticker, a wearable sensor that can measure vital signs — temperature, heart and respiratory rates and coughing — and transmit it to clinicians in near-real time.

Vici, an InTouch Health robot with a camera forehead, tablet chest and keyboard navel, let docs in Washington state communicate with the first US COVID-19 patient in isolation. And Stanford researchers are using the Crispr gene-editing tool to see if they can stop the coronavirus from hijacking human cells.

Other companies are at work to end shortages of vital equipment: The FDA on Sunday approved the nonprofit Battelle’s request to sterilize N95 masks without limit (after the agency at first tried to set a 10,000-a-day limit — why?). Battelle’s seeking approval to sterilize other equipment, such as ventilator parts, as well.

Here in New York, the Northwell hospital group is converting anesthesia machines and BIPAP devices (used for sleep apnea) into ventilators.

With the pandemic’s peak still ahead, take some consolation in the fact that innovators’ responses are expanding exponentially, too.

The test that can detect antibodies will be a game-changer. Once we can discover who has the disease, who has had the disease, and who is immune to the disease, we can limit our lockdowns to the people and places that are necessary. One of the reasons we are seeing the numbers in New York and some other places is that those places are densely populated and people we out eating, gathering together for plays and music, and generally spending time in close proximity for at least a month without anyone understanding the risk. When we reach the point where we know the risk and can test freely, we should be able to gradually open our economy back up.

A Very Interesting Possibility

Townhall is reporting today that a group of scientists at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine believe that they may have found a vaccine for the coronavirus.

The article quotes The New York Post:

The researchers announced their findings Thursday and believe the vaccine could be rolled out quickly enough to “significantly impact the spread of disease,” according to their study published in EBioMedicine.

The vaccine would be delivered on a small, fingertip-sized patch. When tested on mice, the vaccine produced enough antibodies believed to successfully counteract the virus.

[…]

“These two viruses, which are closely related to SARS-CoV-2, teach us that a particular protein, called a spike protein, is important for inducing immunity against the virus,” read a statement from co-senior author Andrea Gambotto, M.D., associate professor of surgery at the Pitt School of Medicine.

“We knew exactly where to fight this new virus.”

[…]

Researchers said they sided with using a patch, rather than a traditional needle, to deliver the spike protein to the skin, which elicits the strongest immune reaction.

The patch contains 400 tiny “microneedles” made of sugar and protein pieces. It would be applied like a Band-Aid with the needles dissolving into the skin.

The vaccine would be “highly scalable” for widespread use, the researchers said in a news release.

Stay tuned. This may be the best news we have had since January.

 

A Different Take On The Coronavirus

Michael Fumento posted an article at The New York Post yesterday about the coronavirus. He believes, based on the behavior of viruses in the past, that the number of cases of the virus will peak quickly and then subside.

The article notes:

More than 18,000 Americans have died from this season’s generic flu so far, according to the latest data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In 2018, the CDC estimated, there were 80,000 flu deaths. That’s against 19 coronavirus deaths so far, from about 470 cases.

Worldwide, there have been about 3,400 coronavirus deaths, out of about 100,000 identified cases. Flu, by comparison, grimly reaps about 291,000 to 646,000 annually.

China is the origin of the virus and still accounts for over 80 percent of cases and deaths. But its cases peaked and began ­declining more than a month ago, according to data presented by the Canadian epidemiologist who spearheaded the World Health Organization’s coronavirus mission to China. Fewer than 200 new cases are reported daily, down from a peak of 4,000.

Subsequent countries will follow this same pattern, in what’s called Farr’s Law. First formulated in 1840 and ignored in ­every epidemic hysteria since, the law states that epidemics tend to rise and fall in a roughly symmetrical pattern or bell-shaped curve. AIDS, SARS, Ebola — they all followed that pattern. So does seasonal flu each year.

Clearly, flu is vastly more contagious than the new coronavirus, as the WHO has noted. Consider that the first known coronavirus cases date back to early December, and since then, the virus has ­afflicted fewer people in total than flu does in a few days. Oh, and why are there no flu quarantines? Because it’s so contagious, it would be impossible.

As for death rates, as I first noted in these pages on Jan. 24, you can’t employ simple math — as everyone is doing — and look at deaths versus cases because those are ­reported cases. With both flu and assuredly with coronavirus, the great majority of those infected have symptoms so mild — if any — that they don’t seek medical attention and don’t get counted in the caseload.

Furthermore, those calculating rates ­ignore the importance of good health care. Given that the vast majority of cases have occurred in a country with poor health care, that’s going to dramatically exaggerate the death rate.

The article adds:

Like the flu, the coronavirus is afflicting high-risk groups: the elderly, those with ­underlying health conditions like diabetes or heart disease and those with compromised immune systems. Are there exceptions? Sure. But that’s the case with almost every complex biological phenomenon of the kind.

More good news. This month, the Northern Hemisphere, which includes the countries with the most cases, starts heating up. Almost all respiratory viruses hate warm and moist weather. That’s why flu dies out in America every year by May at the latest and probably why Latin America has reported only 25 coronavirus cases. The Philippines, where I live, has about a third of the US population, but it’s so damned hot and humid here, so far we have had no confirmed cases of internal transmission.

Pray for warm weather soon. Meanwhile, keep washing your hands.

A New Level Of Selfishness

The New York Post posted an article today about a Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center staffer who recently returned from Italy and was asked to self-isolate until the results of his coronavirus test came back. Unfortunately he chose not to listen.

The article reports:

New Hampshire’s first coronavirus patient shrugged off his quarantine and went to an event in a different state — potentially exposing almost 200 people to the deadly illness, officials revealed.

The dimwit Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center staffer showed symptoms of the virus after returning from a trip to Italy, and was told to stay home while awaiting test results — which came back positive Monday, state health officials said.

But three days earlier, he had ignored the instructions and gone to a party over the border in Vermont, officials said.

“Despite having been directed to self-isolate, [he] attended an invitation-only private event on Friday,” the New Hampshire Department of Health and Human Services said in a statement.

About 175 people were at the bash, organized by Dartmouth’s Tuck School of Business and held at The Engine Room in White River Junction, right across the river from the New Hampshire hospital.

“It’s very disturbing to be honest,” Brandon Fox, the owner and manager of The Engine Room told The Post. “He made a really bad decision.”

If anyone who attended that event contracts the virus and dies, can he be charged with involuntary manslaughter? I don’t think that should be out of the question.

The article notes:

But the patient is believed to have already infected at least one other man — also a Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center employee, officials said. The hospital said both men had no contact with patients.

An order of isolation has now been issued to the egocentric first patient under a state public health law to make sure he doesn’t break the quarantine again.

If he leaves the lockdown now, officials will be able to send police after him to keep him put.

But New Hampshire health officials didn’t respond to questions about if or how they were monitoring his self-quarantine this time around.

Meanwhile, Fox’s event space has been sanitized — twice — and health officials said events could continue.

Not only did this man put other people at risk, he negatively impacted a business. There are consequences to bad behavior. He worked at a medical center, you would think that he would have had some respect for the damage basic germs can do.

Unnecessary Disrespect

The New York Post posted an article about Speaker Pelosi ripping up the President’s State of the Union Speech. The article includes a video showing her making small rips in the speech while the President was speaking. I don’t know if her gesture of ripping up the speech was planned before the speech, but it was definitely planned during the speech.

Jonathan Turley posted an article at The Hill today stating his thoughts on Speaker Pelosi’s actions.

The article reports:

The House has its share of infamies, great and small, real and symbolic, and has been the scene of personal infamies from brawls to canings. But the conduct of Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) at the State of the Union address this week will go down as a day of infamy for the chamber as an institution. It has long been a tradition for House Speakers to remain stoic and neutral in listening to the address. However, Pelosi seemed to be intent on mocking President Trump from behind his back with sophomoric facial grimaces and head shaking, culminating in her ripping up a copy of his address.

Her drop the mic moment will have a lasting impact on the House. While many will celebrate her trolling of the president, she tore up something far more important than a speech. Pelosi has shredded decades of tradition, decorum and civility that the nation could use now more than ever. The House Speaker is more than a political partisan, particularly when carrying out functions such as the State of the Union address. A president appears in the House as a guest of both chambers of Congress. The House Speaker represents not her party or herself but the entirety of the chamber. At that moment, she must transcend her own political ambitions and loyalties.

The article concludes:

Pelosi has demolished decades of tradition with this poorly considered moment. Of course, many will celebrate her conduct and be thrilled by the insult to Trump. However, even those of us who disagree with his policies should consider what Pelosi destroyed in her moment of rage. She shredded the pretense of governing with civility and dignity in the House. Notably, she did not wait to rip up her copy of the speech until after she left the House floor. Pelosi wanted to do it at the end of the speech, in front of the camera, with the president still in the chamber.

That act was more important to Pelosi than preserving the tradition of her office. In doing so, she forfeited the right to occupy that office. If Pelosi cannot maintain the dignity and neutrality of her office at the State of the Union, she should resign as the Speaker of the House of Representatives.

I don’t see her resigning, but the next time the Democrats claim that President Trump is dividing the country, we need to remind them that they need to look in the mirror.

The DNC Is Rigging The Results Again

Many of the Democrat party elite do not want Bernie Sanders as their presidential candidate. He is too far left of the average voter. The millennial generation loves him, but they are not known for their voter turnout. A Bernie Sanders presidential campaign might easily end up the way the George McGovern campaign ended. The establishment Democrats want to protect their party. However, Bernie is gaining in the polls and may win the first three primary states. So how do the people who formerly congregated in smoke-filled rooms to choose candidates deal with this problem? Easy–rig the system.

The New York Post reported yesterday that the Democratic National Committee has dropped the fundraising requirements that had kept Mike Bloomberg out of the presidential debates.

The article reports:

Until now, making the debates required some minimal success both in the polls and in raising lots of donations from several states — 225,000 donors, with at least 1,000 from 20 different states, for the Feb. 7 debate.

But Bloomy refuses to spend anyone’s money but his own: “I’ve never accepted a nickel from anyone,” as he wrote in a CNN op-ed, so “I’ve always been independent of the special interests.”

He’s also not even trying to win the earliest primary states — but has still soared to fourth place in national polls of Democrats’ 2020 contest. So he should clearly be onstage in the debates. It’s only fair for him, his rivals and the voters — who deserve to see all the top contenders face off against each other.

Then again, spending some of his own $60 billion has let him lap the field when it comes to advertising–he’s shelled out an unprecendented $278 million on ads since he entered the race in November, including $11 million for a 60-second Super Bowl spot.

His investment has paid off–he has moved into fourth place.

The article concludes:

We’ve been dubious about the DNC’s rules from the start — the way gazillionaire Tom Steyer, a total vanity candidate, gamed his way into the debates was a dead giveaway of poor design, as were the unwieldy 10-candidates-at-a-time early face-offs.

Some fix may still be in: The new rules, starting with the Feb. 19 Las Vegas debate, require a candidate to either 1) pick up a pledged delegate in the first two contests or 2) reach at least 10% in four DNC-recognized polls, or 12% in two “DNC-kosher” early-state polls.

That could limit the field to Biden, Bernie Sanders and Liz Warren — which would look like the DNC rigging the game for Biden.

Stay tuned. I can’t imaging Bernie Sanders supporters putting up with having the nomination pulled out from under them twice, particularly if a brokered convention somehow winds up with Hillary Clinton as the candidate. This could be very interesting.

James Bond, Eat Your Heart Out!

Scott Johnson at Power Line Blog posted an article today about the escape of former Nissan CEO Carlos Ghosn from house arrest in Japan. It’s an amazing story. Mr. Ghosn, who is 5 feet 6 inches tall escaped in a box used to transport musical instruments.

The article quotes The New York Post:

In a bizarre scheme allegedly orchestrated by his wife in the US, a group of ex-special forces soldiers posing as musicians specializing in a Gregorian band and toting music equipment strolled past Japanese security guards and entered the pad, according to the Lebanese news channel MTV.

Ghosn, who stands at just under 5-foot-6, climbed into “one of the boxes intended for the transfer of musical instruments,’’ the news station said — possibly a roughly 6-foot-tall double-base case.

He was then carted out in the case when the group left, after a “logical time for a concert had passed,” MTV said.

Japanese authorities had the door to his home under 24-hour video surveillance — but, per an April court agreement, Ghosn’s camp didn’t have to turn over each month’s recordings until the 15th of the following month, The Wall Street Journal reported.

Ghosn is believed to have been spirited out of the country on a chartered Bombardier jet from Kansai International Airport in Osaka — a six-hour drive from Toyko — around 11:10 p.m. Sunday, the Journal said.

The plane landed at Ataturk Airport in Istanbul early Monday, reports said. Ghosn then boarded a smaller plane belonging to the Turkish company MNG Jet Havacilik AS that departed about 30 minutes later for Rafic Hariri Airport in Beirut, Lebanon.

Japanese authorities apparently had no idea that their most high-profile detainee had fled until hours later — and only then, from an MTV reporter.

The station worker approached Matahiro Yamaguchi, the Japanese ambassador to Lebanon, at a party in Beirut around 6 p.m. Monday and asked about Ghosn’s fleeing, The Guardian reported.

The stunned ambassador said his administration knew nothing about it — and spent the next few minutes furiously texting before abruptly leaving the event.

The article in The New York Post continues:

Lebanon authorities claimed Ghosn entered the country legally via the use of a French passport — although it’s unclear how.

Lawyer Hironaka said he still has Ghosn’s three passports, for Lebanon, France and Brazil, that his client had to turn over as a condition of bail.

“It would have been difficult for him to do this without the assistance of some large organization,” Hironaka told reporters.

The article at Power Line Blog reminds us that nothing happens in Lebanon without the approval of Hezbollah. Interesting.

 

 

Don’t Look For This Name On The Witness List

Yesterday The New York Post posted an article about Ukrainian Foreign Minister Vadym Prystaiko.

The article reports:

Badly undermining Democrats’ impeachment narrative, Ukrainian Foreign Minister Vadym Prystaiko told the press in Kiev on Thursday, “I have never seen a direct relationship between investigations and security assistance.”

That is, between the investigations President Trump wanted into 1) Ukrainian interference in the 2016 campaign and 2) Joe and Hunter Biden and the Ukrainian firm Burisma, on the one hand, and US aid that Trump put on hold this summer, on the other.

He specified that he didn’t hear that message from Trump’s top envoy, Ambassador to the EU Gordon Sondland, who “did not tell us, and did not tell me exactly, about the relation between the assistance and the investigations.”

In summary: “Yes, investigations were mentioned, you know, in a presidential conversation. But there was no clear connection between these events.”

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky has also made it plain he never felt undue pressure to investigate the Bidens. And he never did, yet the aid went through anyway.

If you were paying close attention to the circus in Washington, you probably noticed that the charges against President Trump have suddenly changed from quid pro quo to bribery. That is the result of focus groups engaged by the Democrats that showed that the concept of bribery carried more impact that the idea of quid pro quo. When bribery doesn’t resonate the way they want it to, they will move on to something else. Meanwhile we have trade deals that need to be approved and infrastructure that is crumbling. Hopefully, the voters will replace the ‘resistance’ leaders in the House of Representatives in the next election.

This Really Isn’t News To Anyone Who Has Been Paying Attention

The New York Post posted an article today about some recent comments by forensic pathologist Dr. Michael Baden, New York City’s former chief medical examiner, about the death of Jeffrey Epstein.

The article reports:

“I think that the evidence points toward homicide rather than suicide,” Baden insisted on Fox News Wednesday.

“The brother (Mark Epstein) is concerned that if [Epstein] was murdered, then other people who have information might be at risk,” Baden insisted, suggesting powerful players may have been involved in the death.

“If they think he has information, his life could be in jeopardy.”

Baden said there were signs of “unusual” activity “from day one” of the autopsy, saying the wounds were “more consistent with ligature homicidal strangulation.”

The article also notes some rather strange circumstances surrounding the death of Jeffrey Epstein:

Baden noted two fractures on either side of Epstein’s larynx, and one on the hyoid bone, above the moneyman’s Adam’s apple.

“Hanging does not cause these broken bones and homicide does,” he insisted on Fox. “A huge amount of pressure was applied.”

Baden also called for federal prosecutors to release the findings from DNA samples.

 “They took fingernail clippings to see if there’s anybody else’s DNA on it and that hasn’t been released, neither has information about whose DNA is on the ligature out of torn strips of orange sheets,” he said.

“Whoever made it has to have a lot of DNA on it and the brother has been asking for that from day one.”

He also questioned the supposed “total breakdown in security,” with the “extremely unlikely” coincidences of two guards falling asleep while video cameras in Epstein’s cell and hallway were also not working.

I suspect this is not the last we will hear about this. Hopefully the truth will be revealed eventually.