May 142020

Byron Street haberdashery, New York 1900


95,000 Entered UK By Air In 25 Days During Lockdown (G.)
Australia Saw Overseas Visitors Fall 99% In April (R.)
Why California Is Struggling To Control Coronavirus (LAT)
Real UK Care Home Death Toll Double Official Figure (G.)
Pensioners 34 Times More Likely To Die Of COVID19 Than Working Age Brits (G.)
Only 4.4% of French Population Infected By Coronavirus (R.)
Wisconsin Supreme Court Strikes Down State’s Stay-at-Home Order (NBC)
72 People In Wisconsin Test Positive After Attending ‘Large Gathering’ (DM)
36.6% of COVID19 Patients In NY Study Develop Acute Kidney Injury (R.)
Ontario Redeploys Educators Into Nursing Homes, As One Records 56 Deaths (R.)
Why Are So Many People Getting Sick And Dying In Montreal From Covid-19? (G.)
COVID-19 Bailout Gave Wall Street a No-Lose Casino (Taibbi)
FBI Accidentally Reveals Name Of Saudi Embassy Official Suspected In 9/11 (Y!)
US Judge Asks If Michael Flynn Should Be Held In Contempt (R.)
Flynn Case Requires Letting The Sun Shine On Comey And Mueller (McLaughlin)



• US New cases 21,449

• New deaths 1,896 (yesterday 1,894, Monday: 830, Sunday: 776)

• Russia breaks its chain of 10 consecutive days of more than 10,000 new cases with 9,974




Cases 4,451,226 (+ 93,006 from yesterday’s 4,358,220)

Deaths 298,520 (+ 5,284 from yesterday’s 293,236)




From Worldometer yesterday evening -before their day’s close-



From Worldometer



From SCMP:








The UK never had an actual lockdown, they just pretended they did.

18.1 million arrivals to the UK by air, land and sea from 1 January to 23 March, pre-“lockdown”. Another 95,000 just by air between 1 April and 26 April, during the lockdown. With tons of stories of very few if any checked out.

The government stopped issuing guidance at the border to arrivals from specific countries – including from Italy and China – to self-isolate on 13 March, 10 days before the lockdown was imposed.

95,000 Entered UK By Air In 25 Days During Lockdown (G.)

At least 95,000 people have entered the UK from overseas since the coronavirus lockdown was imposed, one of the government’s chief scientific advisers has revealed, while repeatedly failing to provide an estimate of how many of these people had Covid-19. Appearing before MPs on the science and technology committee, Prof John Aston, the chief scientific adviser at the Home Office, admitted that had tougher restrictions been introduced at the border, the peak of the virus may have been delayed – but he did not say by how long, or if this would have saved lives. Aston, who attends meetings of the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), which is advising the government during the crisis, was asked repeatedly for the estimated proportion or number of people arriving in the UK with Covid-19.

He insisted instead that a more “robust” assessment was the ratio of imported cases to domestic cases. This model, formulated by Sage, estimates 0.5% of all cases on any given day are imported from overseas. The government stopped issuing guidance at the border to arrivals from specific countries – including from Italy and China – to self-isolate on 13 March, 10 days before the lockdown was imposed. Since then, there has been little intervention other than advice provided on leaflets and posters. Arrivals will have been subjected to the same lockdown restrictions imposed on the wider population since 23 March. [..] Yvette Cooper, the chair of the home affairs select committee, [..] asked Aston if ministers had a central estimate of the number of people arriving each week who might have Covid-19 when the decision to stop asking any arrivals to self-isolate was made.

[..] Cooper [..] said: “Previously people were asked to self-isolate at the border for 14 days. Inexplicably when other countries were increasing their restrictions or their requirements to self-isolate, the UK lifted them all. It was before the peak in Spain, it was still around the peak in Italy, it was several weeks before the peak in UK.” Aston’s evidence comes as the government prepares to enforce a 14-day quarantine for arrivals by air at the UK border – a policy that some have suggested would have been more appropriate prior to the UK lockdown on 23 March. There were 18.1 million arrivals to the UK in the period from 1 January to 23 March across air, land and sea, of whom 273 air passengers were formally quarantined. Aston told the committee that between 1 April and 26 April there were 95,000 arrivals into the UK by air, of whom about 53,000 were UK citizens.

Read more …

This looks more like a lockdown. Just 6,500 non-Australians arrived in April.

Australia Saw Overseas Visitors Fall 99% In April (R.)

Australia saw overseas arrivals collapse to almost nothing in April as it closed its borders to fight the coronavirus pandemic, in a massive blow for the tourist industry. Preliminary data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics released on Wednesday showed arrivals of 21,600 in April, down 98.7% from a year earlier. Returning Australian citizens accounted for 15,100 of them. The biggest decline was in arrivals from New Zealand, which dived by 161,950 to just 1,180. Arrivals from China, where closures had already badly curbed tourism in March, dropped 132,040 to only 320. Departures from Australia likewise plunged 96.5% to 63,500, mostly foreigners returning home.

Read more …

50% of people still leave their homes every day. Not a lockdown.

Why California Is Struggling To Control Coronavirus (LAT)

The Times asked UC San Francisco epidemiologist and infectious disease expert Dr. George Rutherford, a former epidemic intelligence service officer with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about why the plateau persists. “As long as it’s going up, it has not ended. It’s got to come down for it to end,” he said. Rutherford offered two reasons why the disease is persisting: a certain percentage of people still must go out to work, and others are getting fed up with staying at home. A significant part of the population has chosen not to say home or has been unable to do so because they’re essential workers manning supermarkets, meat processing plants, prisons and nursing homes.

A CDC study estimated that around April 1, about two weeks into a regional stay-at-home order, nearly 50% of residents in five Bay Area counties were still leaving home, down from 80% in late February. “That’s still 50%,” Rutherford said, adding that people can still get infected even if they limit their trips outside the home to buy a loaf of bread at the supermarket. Essential workers who must leave home — people working in the food industry, making deliveries and staffing medical facilities — are among those contracting the coronavirus. A UC San Francisco study of thousands of residents and workers in the city’s Mission District found that 57% of those tested must leave their homes for work, and those who had to leave home to work accounted for 90% of the positive cases.

Nearly 89% of those who tested positive earn less than $50,000 a year, and most live in households with three or more people. While Latinos made up 44% of those tested, they accounted for more than 99% of the positive COVID-19 cases. Many residents and workers in the Mission District are employed in essential services such as agriculture, construction, manufacturing, restaurants, grocery stores and janitorial and domestic services, the university said. Staying home, the researchers said, clearly seemed to make a difference.

Read more …

Ambrose Evans Pritchard quotes a “London cardiologist friendly to Boris”:

“We discharged known, suspected and unknown cases into care homes which were unprepared with no formal warning that the patients were infected, no testing available, and no PPE to prevent transmission.”

Real UK Care Home Death Toll Double Official Figure (G.)

More than 22,000 care home residents in England and Wales may have died as a direct or indirect result of Covid-19, academics have calculated – more than double the number stated as passing away from the disease in official figures. Academics at the London School of Economics found that data on deaths in care homes directly attributed to the virus published by the Office for National Statistics significantly underestimated the impact of the pandemic on care home residents and accounted for only about four out of 10 of the excess deaths in care settings recorded in recent weeks in England and Wales. ONS statisticians said on Tuesday that 8,314 people had died from confirmed or suspected Covid-19 in English care homes up to 8 May.

The figures suggest the impact of the virus in care homes is finally reducing. They are based on reports filed directly from care home operators to the regulator, the Care Quality Commission. Care Inspectorate Wales has said Covid was confirmed or suspected in a further 504 cases in homes up to the 8 May in Wales. But academics at the care policy and evaluation centre at the LSE found that when excess deaths of other care residents and the deaths of care home residents from Covid-19 in hospitals are taken into account, the toll that can be directly and indirectly linked to the virus pandemic is likely to be more than double the current official count.

[..] Care homes have been running at 10% to 20% staff absence rates and many homes have been trying to isolate residents in their rooms to reduce infection spread, but this can also make their normal care more difficult and residents’ needs less visible.

Read more …

Well, if you put them all together and insert known patients, no wonder. Do the same with younger people and you get the same result.

Pensioners 34 Times More Likely To Die Of COVID19 Than Working Age Brits (G.)

As Britain edges back to work and employees consider the risks of moving beyond lockdown, official figures underscore that working-age Britons are 34 times less likely to die of coronavirus than over-65s. About 12% of all deaths relating to Covid-19 have occurred among those under 65 – a total of 4,066 deaths. Most victims have been in the over-65 category, accounting for 30,978 fatalities. There have been 8.4 deaths per 100,000 people among the under-65 category, which rises to 286 deaths per 100,000 in the over-65 group, meaning pensioners are 34 times more likely to die of the illness. The contrast is even starker in data concerning those under 45. According to the Office for National Statistics figure, there have been just 401 deaths in this age group – one death for every 100,000 people, or around 1% of the overall death toll.

However, age is just one of the factors that will affect a person’s vulnerability to the virus. Research has shown that ethnicity, deprivation, pre-existing health conditions and occupation also contribute to an individual’s risk of dying. The death rate among the working population differs by gender. The death rate for men is 9.9 per 100,000 people and 5.2 per 100,000 women. This may also be driven by the death rate in particular occupations, as some workers appear to be more vulnerable depending on exposure to the virus.

Death rates among some minority ethnic groups are also disproportionately high, according to a report by the Institute for Fiscal Studies. It found the death rate among British black Africans and British Pakistanis from coronavirus in English hospitals was more than 2.5 times that of the white population. Guardian reporting also found that areas with high BAME populations tended to have higher death rates.

New data released by the ONS on Monday showed for the first time that people in low-paid manual jobs were at much greater risk of dying from Covid-19. Men in low-paid jobs were almost four times more likely to die from coronavirus than professionals, with 21.4 deaths per 100,000 people, compared with 5.6 among white-collar male workers, according to the analysis. Jobs which were found to have high death rates included security guards, care workers, construction workers, plant operatives, cleaners, taxi drivers, bus drivers, chefs and retail workers. Commenting on the findings, Professor Neil Pearce, a professor of epidemiology at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, said: “The observations are almost certainly due to … exposure to people….”

Read more …

Probably a lowball, but very far from herd immunity.

Only 4.4% of French Population Infected By Coronavirus (R.)

A study led by the Pasteur Institute says a mere 4.4% of the French population – or 2.8 million people – have been infected by the novel coronavirus, much higher than the official count of cases but way too low to achieve so-called “herd immunity”. In a study published on Wednesday in the journal Science, researchers say the infection rate in the worst-hit parts of France – the eastern part of the country and the Paris region – is between 9 and 10 percent on average. “Around 65% of the population should be immune if we want to control the pandemic by the sole means of immunity”, the study says. Herd immunity refers to a situation where enough people in a population have immunity to an infection to be able to effectively stop that disease from spreading. The rate of infection was measured by the Pasteur Institute as of May 11, the day when France started to unwind its almost two-month-long national lockdown.

“As of a consequence, our results show that, without a vaccine, the herd immunity alone will not be enough to avoid a second wave at the end of the lockdown. Efficient control measures must thus be upheld after May 11”, researchers say. France’s overall death toll from the virus rose to 27,074 on Wednesday, the fifth-highest in the world, and total number of cases officially stood at 177,700, the seventh-highest total. The Pasteur Institute also said the lockdown put in place on March 17 in France led to a drastic decline of the coronavirus’ reproduction rate, going from 2.9 to 0.67 over the 55-day virtual standstill of the country. A Spanish study also published on Wednesday showed similar results, saying about 5% of the country’s population had contracted the disease and that there was no herd immunity in Spain, also emerging progressively for long lockdown.

Large sero-survey in Spain with 60,000 participants shows ~5% of population tested positive for #coronavirus antibodies, 11% in region with highest incidence (Madrid)
1) Infection fatality rate ~1.2%
2) Herd immunity is not an option

Read more …

Why then have a law that says you can’t drive through city center at 200 mph? Same difference. “I will not give up my freedom for your safety”.

Wisconsin Supreme Court Strikes Down State’s Stay-at-Home Order (NBC)

The Wisconsin Supreme Court on Wednesday struck down the state’s stay-at-home order during the coronavirus pandemic as “unlawful, invalid, and unenforceable” after finding that the state’s health secretary exceeded her authority. In a 4-3 ruling, the court called Health Services Secretary Andrea Palm’s directive, known as Emergency Order 28, a “vast seizure of power.” The order directed all people in the state to stay at home or at their places of residence, subject only to exceptions allowed by Palm, the ruling says. The order, which had been set to run until May 26, also restricted travel and business, along with threatening jail time or fines for those who don’t comply.

The ruling says the judges weren’t challenging Democratic Gov. Tony Evers’ emergency powers, but the decision effectively undercuts his administration and forces him to work out a compromise with the Republican-controlled Legislature. One of the dissenting justices, Rebecca Dallet, said her conservative colleagues in the majority were the ones who were exceeding their authority, and she noted precedent for Palm’s directives — a monthslong stay-at-home order during the 1918 Spanish Flu pandemic. “This decision will undoubtedly go down as one of the most blatant examples of judicial activism in this court’s history,” she said. “And it will be Wisconsinites who pay the price.” [..] During oral arguments, Justice Rebecca Bradley suggested that the order amounted to “tyranny,” and at another point, she referred to Japanese Americans’ internment during World War II.

Read more …

A protest meeting.

72 People In Wisconsin Test Positive After Attending ‘Large Gathering’ (DM)

More than 70 people in Wisconsin have tested positive for coronavirus after admitting they attended a ‘large gathering’ in the state – around the same time that thousands of protesters were pictured ignoring social distancing and shunning face masks at a mass anti-lockdown rally. The state’s Department of Health Services (DHS) confirmed that 72 individuals who were diagnosed with the deadly virus on or after April 26 had all attended a large gathering not long before their diagnosis. ‘We were able to pull some limited data – out of 1,986 cases with onset/diagnosis on or after 4/26, there were seventy-two cases who reported attending a large gathering,’ DHS spokesperson Jennifer Miller told The Progressive.

Two days earlier on April 24, thousands of protesters gathered outside Wisconsin’s capitol building in Madison demanding Democratic Governor Tony Evers reopen the state for business. It marked one of the largest anti-lockdown rallies to take place across the country. At the time there were 5,356 confirmed cases of coronavirus in Wisconsin and 262 people had died. As of Wednesday, cases have almost doubled to 10,611 and the death toll has reached 418. [..] ‘Possible exposures during protests haven’t been specifically added to the database because we already ask about large gatherings,’ Miller told The Progressive. ‘Contact tracers do ask if patients attended mass gatherings, but not specifically about protests, so there’s really no data on who may have contracted COVID-19 at a protest.’ Miller added: ‘No, it doesn’t specifically state that the 72 were at a rally, but this is the data we have.’

Read more …

Right before they go on the ventilator.

36.6% of COVID19 Patients In NY Study Develop Acute Kidney Injury (R.)

Over a third of patients treated for COVID-19 in a large New York medical system developed acute kidney injury, and nearly 15% required dialysis, U.S. researchers reported on Thursday. The study was conducted by a team at Northwell Health, the largest health provider in New York state. “We found in the first 5,449 patients admitted, 36.6% developed acute kidney injury,” said study co-author Dr. Kenar Jhaveri, associated chief of nephrology at Hofstra/Northwell in Great Neck, New York, whose findings were published in the journal Kidney International. Acute kidney injury occurs when the kidneys fail and become unable to filter out waste. Of those patients with kidney failure, 14.3% required dialysis, Jhaveri said in a phone interview.

The study is the largest to date to look at kidney injury in COVID-19 patients. It may be helpful, Jhaveri said, as other hospitals face new waves of patients with the disease caused by the novel coronavirus that has infected more than 4.3 million people and killed over 295,000 globally. Several groups have noted increased rates of kidney failure among patients with COVID-19. Jhaveri and colleagues set out to quantify it by combing through medical records of 5,449 COVID-19 patients hospitalized between March 1 and April 5. They found that kidney failure occurred early on, with 37.3% of patients arriving at the hospital with failing kidneys, or developing the condition within the first 24 hours of being admitted. In many cases, the kidney failure occurred around the time severely ill patients needed to be placed on a ventilator, Jhaveri said.

Read more …

Canada’s not doing well.

Ontario Redeploys Educators Into Nursing Homes, As One Records 56 Deaths (R.)

The Canadian province of Ontario is allowing its education staff, including teachers and custodians, to voluntarily redeploy into the province’s long-term care homes, the provincial government said on Wednesday, as the coronavirus outbreak at just one Toronto-area home alone has killed dozens. Coronavirus deaths in long-term care nursing homes account for 815 of 1,765 total deaths in Ontario, Canada’s most populous province, according to provincial data released on Wednesday. Camilla Care Community recorded 56 deaths, according to the home’s owner, Sienna Senior Living, on Wednesday. The regional health authority reported 179 residents and 39 staff have tested positive at the facility.

In March, Ontario closed schools in an effort to stop the spread of the virus, requiring many educators and other staff to leave their jobs. This latest redeployment focuses on training and moving any employees who volunteer into nursing homes. Ontario has previously moved workers from hospitals into long-term care homes, and Wednesday’s announcement expands the province’s support for the facilities, which have been hit hard by the virus. The province also issued an emergency order on Wednesday morning, allowing the provincial government to issue mandatory management orders to any long-term care home struggling to deal with an outbreak.

Read more …

Not just care homes, poor parts of town as well.

Why Are So Many People Getting Sick And Dying In Montreal From Covid-19? (G.)

Springtime in Montreal is normally a cause for celebration. After the city’s long, arduous winters, people emerge from the confines of their apartments at the first inkling of warmth to lounge in parks and on patios – or terrasses – and enjoy a meal, beverage and the company of friends. Not this year. Montreal, a city touted by tourist guides as “North America’s Europe” for its rich culture and joie de vivre, is Canada’s centre for Covid-19. Of the entire country’s 70,000 cases and 5,000 deaths, the city of 2 million people has 20,000 cases and more than 2,000 deaths, or about 64% of the entire province’s death toll. Those numbers have catapulted Quebec into an unfavourable position: it is now the seventh deadliest place in the world for daily coronavirus deaths, according to Quebec newspaper La Presse.

[..] Earlier this month, the province admitted that its effort to manage staffing shortages by moving workers around the long-term care network could be spreading the virus. Montreal North feels the consequences of that. One in five Montrealers infected with Covid-19 are healthcare workers – none of whom are receiving danger pay. In Montreal North, 23% are infected, said community organizer Will Prosper. “It’s these people who are still taking care of us, when not too long ago they were the people who we wanted to kick out,” said Prosper.

Read more …

Just a bigger casino.

COVID-19 Bailout Gave Wall Street a No-Lose Casino (Taibbi)

The $2.3 trillion CARES Act, the Donald Trump-led rescue package signed into law on March 27th, is a radical rethink of American capitalism. It retains all the cruelties of the free market for those who live and work in the real world, but turns the paper economy into a state protectorate, surrounded by a kind of Trumpian Money Wall that is designed to keep the investor class safe from fear of loss. This financial economy is a fantasy casino, where the winnings are real but free chips cover the losses. For a rarefied segment of society, failure is being written out of the capitalist bargain. This is a fresh take on a long-developing dynamic. Dating to the late Eighties, when then-Fed-chief Alan Greenspan slashed interest rates after the 1987 stock-market crash, there’s been an understanding that the government would be there to help Wall Street back on its feet in hard times.

[..] What’s happening in the COVID-19 crisis is the next step: a financial bubble where the Fed isn’t the cleanup mechanism, but the source of the mania itself. While the real economy is seeing record disruptions, Wall Street has seen prolonged rallies of “rational exuberance” over the Fed’s decision to usher in “QE infinity” and essentially ban losing in finance capitalism. Though this is a Trump bill — El Pompadour is so determined that the CARES Act be remembered as his work, he fought to get his signature on relief checks — it passed unanimously, by voice vote in the House, and 96-0 in the Senate. Talk to Democrats on the Hill and they will tell you this is a bailout to be cheered and supported, nothing like the 2008 rescue. This time is different, the argument goes: Three-quarters of the money goes to real people.

[..] Technically, “only” about $500 billion of the congressionally passed rescue package goes to “big business.” Moreover, the big-business aid ostensibly comes with a range of draconian-sounding conditions barring greedy hijinks, meaning no layoffs, no stock buybacks, no big bonuses, etc., if companies want the handout. The loophole comes via $454 billion created as part of that big-business package. This “emergency fund” will be dumped into a “special-purpose vehicle” used to backstop further lending by the Federal Reserve. That $454 billion is designed to grow by a factor of 10 or more. “We can lever up to $4 trillion,” said Steve Mnuchin, playing the “free-spending Goldman Sachs-trained Treasury secretary” role that apparently is a prerequisite for financial-disaster narratives in modern America.

Read more …


FBI Accidentally Reveals Name Of Saudi Embassy Official Suspected In 9/11 (Y!)

The FBI inadvertently revealed one of the U.S. government’s most sensitive secrets about the Sept. 11 terror attacks: the identity of a mysterious Saudi Embassy official in Washington who agents suspected had directed crucial support to two of the al-Qaida hijackers. The disclosure came in a new declaration filed in federal court by a senior FBI official in response to a lawsuit brought by families of 9/11 victims that accuses the Saudi government of complicity in the terrorist attacks. The declaration was filed last month but unsealed late last week. According to a spokesman for the 9/11 victims’ families, it represents a major breakthrough in the long-running case, providing for the first time an apparent confirmation that FBI agents investigating the attacks believed they had uncovered a link between the hijackers and the Saudi Embassy in Washington.

It’s unclear just how strong the evidence is against the former Saudi Embassy official — it’s been a subject of sharp dispute within the FBI for years. But the disclosure, which a senior U.S. government official confirmed was made in error, seems likely to revive questions about potential Saudi links to the 9/11 plot. It also shines a light on the extraordinary efforts by top Trump administration officials in recent months to prevent internal documents about the issue from ever becoming public. “This shows there is a complete government cover-up of the Saudi involvement,” said Brett Eagleson, a spokesman for the 9/11 families whose father was killed in the attacks. “It demonstrates there was a hierarchy of command that’s coming from the Saudi Embassy to the Ministry of Islamic Affairs [in Los Angeles] to the hijackers.”

Still, Eagleson acknowledged he was flabbergasted by the bureau’s slip-up in identifying the Saudi Embassy official in a public filing. Although Justice Department lawyers had last September notified lawyers for the 9/11 families of the official’s identity, they had done so under a protective order that forbade the family members from publicly disclosing it. Now, the bureau itself has named the Saudi official. “This is a giant screwup,” Eagleson said.

Read more …

Or should the FBI be held in contempt?

US Judge Asks If Michael Flynn Should Be Held In Contempt (R.)

A U.S. judge on Wednesday signaled reluctance to allow the Justice Department to drop its criminal prosecution of Michael Flynn, tasking a retired judge with advising on whether the former Trump administration official should face an additional criminal contempt charge for perjury. In a short written order, U.S. District Judge Emmet Sullivan in Washington asked John Gleeson, a former federal judge in New York, to present arguments in the case as an amicus curiae, or friend of the court. Sullivan said he was seeking Gleeson’s recommendation on whether Flynn should face a criminal contempt charge for perjury because he testified under oath that he was guilty of lying to the FBI but then reversed course and said he had never lied. Sullivan also said he wanted Gleeson to make the case for why a motion to dismiss the Flynn case filed by the Justice Department last week should be rejected.

The Justice Department’s bombshell May 7 decision to drop its case against Flynn came on the heels of growing pressure from Trump and Trump’s political allies who repeatedly accused the FBI of improprieties in how it handled the investigation. Up until that point, the Justice Department had staunchly defended the FBI’s actions in the case. Flynn, a retired Army lieutenant general who served as an adviser to Trump during the 2016 campaign, pleaded guilty in 2017 to lying to the FBI about his interactions with Russia’s U.S. ambassador Sergey Kislyak in the weeks before Trump took office. However, later in the case he switched lawyers and tactics, accusing the FBI of tricking him and seeking to have his guilty plea withdrawn.

Read more …

Appointed by President Ronald Reagan, Patrick M. McLaughlin served as the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Ohio from 1984-1988 and as an assistant U.S. attorney from 1978 to 1984.

Flynn Case Requires Letting The Sun Shine On Comey And Mueller (McLaughlin)

For most Americans, it must be absolute confusion trying to decipher truth from non-truth as charges and countercharges are leveled by the Democrats and Republicans, and the media weigh in on the Lt. Gen. Michael Flynn case. My suggestion is to ignore the talking heads and read the DOJ’s 20-page motion to dismiss the criminal information against Flynn, and all the exhibits attached to that motion. Then, you will have the facts necessary to come to an informed opinion. I have done that, so let me give a primer. The DOJ determined that “continued prosecution of this case would not serve the interests of justice” because the interview of Flynn by the FBI was unjustified by the FBI’s counterintelligence investigation into Flynn, since that investigation “had yielded an ‘absence of any derogatory information.’”

The DOJ is unpersuaded that Flynn’s interview “was conducted with a legitimate investigative basis” and does not believe that Flynn’s statements “were material even if untrue.” In addition, in consideration of all the evidence “including newly discovered and disclosed information,” the government doubts that it can prove “either the relevant false statements or their materiality beyond a reasonable doubt.” The motion, plus 86 pages of exhibits, provides evidence, at best, of the dereliction of duty by the FBI under James Comey and, at worst, possible criminal misconduct. Only a full disclosure of all relevant information, documents, and testimony under oath by participants will satisfy the right of Americans to have the evidence we deserve in order to form our opinions unfiltered by the talking heads. Let the real facts fall where they may.

[..] When you review the DOJ’s filing, put yourself in Flynn’s shoes and consider how you would feel if the government treated you in the same manner and, to top it off, hid material exculpatory information from your defense team and the court. Overlay on that: How would you handle it if legal fees had wiped you out financially and the agents and prosecutors were threatening to indict a member of your family to pressure you to cave? The conduct of Comey’s FBI, of the Special Counsel, and of some at Main Justice should be placed under the microscope of a truth-seeking, nonpartisan inquiry with the interests of the nation in mind. Find out what happened and why — then fix it.

Read more …

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Home Forums Debt Rattle May 14 2020

Viewing 24 posts - 1 through 24 (of 24 total)
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  • #58750

    Byron Street haberdashery, New York 1900   • 95,000 Entered UK By Air In 25 Days During Lockdown (G.) • Australia Saw Overseas Visitors Fall 99%
    [See the full post at: Debt Rattle May 14 2020]


    FBI Leaking A Name

    Sometimes we need to be grateful that governments are so incompetant!


    Canada’s Lockdown Just Like California’s Lockdown!

    BC may be doing OK but Ontario and Quebec are not doing OK. Between them, they are Canada. The other 8 provinces simply don’t count.

    In Toronto, wearing of masks is at best a 50:50 affair.

    New Canadians, generally younger, don’t seem to be wearing masks at all.

    Toronto has the same problem as Montreal. Montreal is just hogging the headlines from Hog Town (Toronto)!

    Quebec and Ontario politicians are lifting the lockdown because the half assed lockdown isn’t working and the politicians are afraid the voters will soon figure this out and punish the politicians.

    The virus visiting nursing homes lays bare Canada’s great medical system.

    Testing in Ontario and Quebec is still not available to anyone with symptoms of the virus. Only government workers can get tested.


    To Open or to stay closed.
    Its too late to return to yesterday.
    We got no choice but to playing dodgeball with the virus.

    Dr. D

    Did I just hear Dr. Birx on national T.V. saying that Covid cases were inflated 25%? Gee, who’s said that online before? I believe the science, not the science. I believe Dr. Birx, not Dr. Birx. Clearly Dr. Birx is a lying hack and we need a trusted statement from Dr. Birx instead.

    Oh and L.A. will NEVER reopen. Never. According to themselves and their standards are unmeetable. And of course that makes perfect sense when the rate is 0.006%, not quite back in shark-attack territory, but heading there. I’m sure that doing nothing ever again and completely stopping the world’s 5th largest economy won’t have any impact on poverty that might, I dunno, kill 10x more people than the disease? Ask East Germany and Ukraine all about how grand it is to not have an economy and how it doesn’t kill anyone. Oh and Socialism. Definitely the wonders and abundance and healthcare of Socialism.

    And speaking of, anybody want to tell me how NYC can have such a high death toll and L.A. have a low one? And how weeks after kids came back from FL beaches and NOLA parades, no Midwestern cities can seem to get this? Is this a disease or isn’t it? Why does it hit only Democratic states? Strange virus. Seems almost…unscientific.

    Since Cuomo sent all the Covid patients to contaminate fresh nursing homes: “Buried in NY Budget: Legal Shield for Nursing Homes Rife with Coronavirus.” –NYT

    Another right-wing rag pushing corona conspiracy theories. Like the L.A. Times. Shameless!

    Oh and the same thing is true of vaccines. Special government indemnity for this industry (pretty sure that, and the special extrajudicial courts they use are illegal and unconstitutional) But vaccines are perfectly safe, and the pharmaceutical companies would never be more careless knowing they cannot possibly be sued. It’s so safe in fact that they pay out billions every year despite running their own industry-run kangaroo courts that have near-impossible standards of evidence. Good enough for me!

    Anyway, NYC 2.5% of the population but 25% of the CV deaths. Discuss? That’s an order of magnitude difference. We’re in week 20. Perhaps NYers are a different species, Homo Cellphonus, or the virus respects political borders and stays within the NY metro area? Maybe DeBlasio is the sole superspreader. Having a hard time justifying this. If you leave all metros, it drops off to almost nothing. Que paso?

    You don’t science by looking at confirmation, repeating what you already know. You make science by asking new questions, finding out the things you DON’T know, the new things that don’t fit and don’t make sense. That’s why we’re an #AntiLogos #AntiTruth culture. We reject all evidence that doesn’t fit our thesis. That’s literally the definition of #AntiScience. Science would keep (and check!) the evidence and change the theory.

    “50% of people still leave their homes every day. Not a lockdown.”

    Um, because if they didn’t they would die? If they are in any of a hundred professions, nursing, trucking, manufacturing, food, repairs, telecommunications, and they didn’t work, OTHER people would die? Weld them in their houses for 40 days, otherwise, stop pretending. You say they should “Lock Down.” And how exactly will they eat, heat, and get medical care?

    What do they say: “Theory is a great place to live because everything works there”? Meanwhile, back in the real world, how do you plan to support all the food and medicine, when nobody leaves their house to provide food and medicine? With a legion of shoemaking elves? It’s crazy. “Well I TOLD that food to get in my fridge.”

    OBVIOUSLY people have to leave their houses. A LOT of them. I don’t know if it’s 50% but it couldn’t be lower than 30. …Which means it’s a sham and a joke that scientifically can only destroy the economy. The one we all use to EAT.

    Stopping that eating? That’s bad. It tends to kill people. But don’t worry, eating is only “Capitalism” it’s only the “Economy.” Money money money, bad bad bad. No eating? No more problems! Ask Uncle Joe. Hey, let’s not plant crops in California so we can stay home. It’s transparently crazy: dangerously, violently so.

    Ah, why do the good guys have to save you anyway? Why oh why do we go to work and not do as you ask so you can learn your lesson?

    “Matthew McConaughey is reminding people”

    I always get my medical advice from actors and children while we ban licensed doctors from Twitter. That’s just common sense.


    The other 8 provinces simply don’t count.

    They do to me in Nova Scotia – Maybe as an example of how to fix it. In western nova scotia we have had 54 cases for the last 3 weeks no new cases in three weeks. the province as a whole has had some additional cases mostly in nursing homes they have been in the single digits. When I Rarely go to town about 1/2 the people wear masks no one gets close people are social distancing ins stores. . I think Mc Neil has had a consistent message from the start. “Stay the Blazes Home” . New Brunswick has not had a new case in a long while. So many people barking about freedom but in reality your freedom ends at the tip of my nose and the virus means at least 6 feet away. If everyone would have listened from the start it would be all over now. Instead the freedumb fighters have managed to make it a two or three year crisis. good job.


    Double dipping
    Only needy people and needy companies are given money to spend on businesses that need it to survive.

    John Day
    UVB Recipients,

    This is a really limited message today, which is to obtain and take 5000 International Units of vitamin D per day until you croak from old age. This is a simple and obvious public health measure, which you can do, yourself, and you can give “cheap and safe” vitamin-D tablets or gelcaps to people you would like to help.
    I’m trying to buy 5000 doses of 5000 units today. The online interface says I’m doing it, but I have my doubts.
    I have gone through several rounds of buying vitamin-D bottles and giving them to people for themselves and their families in the past 3 months. This time is bigger. I really feel that this is a moment of crisis, where power fations are at each other’s throats, and with no common ground for repair.
    Vitamin-D for everybody can be that common ground.

    Let’s say it reduces morbidity and mortality by 50%.
    That’s what is speculated here, but I think it would do better than that.
    Let’s do the experiment!
    10,000 IU/day”for a few weeks”, followed by 5000 IU/day thereafter is what they recommend, and it is exactly what I have recommended since early February, except I would say “a few” is 8 weeks.

    Vitamin D determines severity in COVID-19 so government advice needs to change​ ​by Trinity College Dublin
    Researchers from Trinity College Dublin are calling on the government in Ireland to change recommendations for vitamin D supplements

    Low vitamin D levels could explain why African Americans and even African immigrants in Sweden appear to be disproportionately hard-hit by the coronavirus, regardless of socio-economic factors, researchers have suggested.
    Vitamin D can protect against getting a severe case of COVID-19, a group of Swedish researchers and doctors have suggested in an article in the medical magazine Läkartidningen.

    “Sunshine Superman”​


    @ john day: do you have any suggestions for enhanced recovery in patients who are two or three or more months post-infection? many of these suffer from fatigue, body pain, and shortness of breath.

    are there any home-based/inexpensive ways to improve oxygenation?

    Doc Robinson

    kimyo99, I found this info which might be helpful, in addition to whatever John Day may recommend.

    “Breathing exercises are actively encouraged post operatively and could probably be advised to recovering COVID-19 patients as well. If we look at the types of breathing exercises that have been used after major surgeries, no difference in benefit has been found when using an incentive spirometer – essentially a game-like device to blow a ball a round – or simple deep breathing exercises5 with either approach giving a benefit to the patient in recovery. Thus, it would be quite reasonable for similar advice to be extended to the post coronavirus patients, in the hope of producing a short term benefit in improvement of their breathing. Many surgical departments have freely available breathing exercises on their patient pages which can easily be accessed by patients6.

    “As for nutritional support in recovery, simple advice ensuring consumption of five fruits and veg a day should be advised, along with increased intake of high quality protein to provide resources for the repair of muscles which will have been taxed considerably during the course of the COVID19 symptoms. As the focus in the post-acute phase is going to be on the recovery of a patient’s respiratory function, cessation of smoking should be encouraged along with avoidance of ibuprofen where possible.”


    @John Day – thanks for the Vit-D advice. Can you share any leads on where to source 5000IU caps, as 1000IU seems to be all I can find in NZ?

    If everyone would have listened from the start it would be all over now. Instead the freedumb fighters have managed to make it a two or three year crisis. good job.
    You assume that complete lockdowns are extremely effective, and that not locking down causes excess spread. NZ locked down completely, Australia allowed businesses to remain open. Both countries have similar outcomes from similar starting points. The data just doesn’t support the notion that extreme lockdowns are the best and only solution.

    At what point will we have reached the “we destroyed the village to save the village” moment? Because lockdowns result in excess mortality from foregone medical operations, suicide etc, they should only be used where and when they can be justified, and for the absolute minimum efficacious period of time. Anything more is not caution – it’s abuse. Emotional abuse. Physical abuse.Psychological abuse.
    You could make a case for lockdown in New York perhaps. But not in sparsely populated areas (as Dr D consistently points out).

    Yesterday the NZ government presented the annual budget – $50 billion to be spent trying to support and restart the economy. Some economists are saying that may eventually rise to $200 billion. For a country of 5 million people! Much of that is required due to the international slowdown from Covid, but a goodly chunk is also from the excess of caution in locking down the entire NZ economy, as opposed to the less stringent lockdown applied by Australia.
    And when you go through the advice to government looking for the rationale for the stringent lockdown, it simply isn’t there. As in, literally doesn’t exist. These decisions are being made on whims, on feelings, for political purposes, not from sound analysis. They’re being post-hoc justified by obfuscation and the insane thing is most people don’t seem to care. Herd thinking. Reality denial. Sticking fingers in ears and going “la la la, can’t hear you”.
    There should be an international chorus of condemnation towards the shit-fuckery that was the Imperial College epidemiology model and advice stemming from it. It was a closed, buggy, poorly constructed model, funded in part by large sums of self-interested private cash. It predicted vast deaths not just once in the current crisis, but in every previous time it’d been used. It’s a total disgrace the way it’s influenced world opinion and actions.. a complete and utter disgrace. So why is it so hard to find this condemnation – loud and strong and clear?
    It’s possible (and sensible) to hold two truths concurrently – that sensible precautions against controlling excess spread and deaths from Covid are essential. And that most Western governments have done a pretty average job in terms of analysing and responding to the data as it arises. There’s been far too little transparent debate, far too much capture by industry experts and consequent herd thinking. Ginormous, earth-shaking decisions such as blanket suspension of civil liberties for arbitrary periods of time, and vast, vast debts being rung up with negligible oversight. And yet, most people don’t seem to really care. Are they asleep? We’re living right now through probably the most profound and consequential event of our lifetimes. And we’re going to continue to passively watch as relatively talentless and accountable middle-managers advise politicians to make these vast decisions, based on what? On a feeling? Off the back of grotesquely flawed modelling?



    The Maritime provinces, like BC, have done well in the fight against the virus. In this particular case you should be glad that you don’t count!

    Sadly, Quebecoise and Ontario, were most of the people in Canada live, have not done so well.

    The one good thing about having 10 provinces in charge of fighting the virus, at least some of them got it right!

    Can you imagine the disaster we would have had, had Trudeau been the only one in charge?

    During the beginnings of the virus, Trudeau was too busy visiting Africa and campaigning for a UN Security Seat! Also Trudeau was more concerned about not offending China than protecting Canadians from the virus.

    He repeatedly refuse to shut down air travel from virus infected countries until it was too late. That is a major reason Montreal and Toronto have been hit so hard. Those are the places most travellers went to (plus Vancouver).

    P.S. I was almost born in Labrador, but my Mother had to leave and go to Montreal, because there was no hospital at the time! Been in Labrador City many times. I have only been to the Maritimes once but really enjoyed the driving trip. Haiifax WW2 Corvette plus Bluenose. Cape Breton was nice. PEI’s beaches. NB blueberry area and Bay of Fundy. Not sure how you can swim in that cold ocean! My brother in Detroit can speak Newfie!



    Is the vehicle traffic on your US/Cdn border cam still pretty quiet?

    I think last time you said it was mostly trucks.

    Ontario opening up hardware stores, so my daughter wants to buy some drywall compound, paint, and moulding to redo interior of house! Wife not too happy about it though! Energy wins over no-energy!


    The Virus

    The more I read about the virus, the more certain I am that everyone should be wearing masks. Throwing in vitamin D per John Day would probably have greatly helped too.

    One place you don’t hear about is the Czech Republic. When the virus struct, they immediately all started wearing masks! I don’t know if they did any other things to help fight the virus but they probably did.

    Their slogan was: “My mask protects you! Your mask protects me! A very simple and to the point message!

    Too bad the message in Canada and the US, was masks don’t work!


    The curve has been flattened. We will not stop the virus. That wasn’t the point, it seems. We want to drag it on and on until millions- billions- die in other awful ways. Fauci is a new Mengele, torturing people with untried nostrums (antivirals are known kidney killers), instilling in health care workers such terror of the virus that ghastly machinery is used instead of nursing back to health (or simply dying peacefully); instead of welcoming a cure that works for many. The lonely, unwitnessed deaths are the worst part. It’s such unbelievable cruelty considering the younger, and healthy are at micro- risk. Could it be he has a hand in the profits? (Sanders asked if “the vaccine” would be free or cheap to those who couldn’t afford it- the answer was a vague “no”.) I’m thinking if we will ever be able to look back at this (I have my doubts) we will see it as a mass murder. If you were a sadist, which profession would you take up? (I have known some very bad doctors, and some really wonderful ones- and the latter knew exactly who I meant by the former)
    There is so much more going on here than a virus which is blamed for killing ONLY 300,000 out of nearly 8 billion. This is the end of the world as we know it, and the really bad stuff hasn’t even begun yet.
    My computer died last night. I bet it was covid19.
    This was a bad day.


    Yes my boy! Nothing changed. Closed until end of June.
    Online ed, distant learning, etc. is going to be in a major transition/revolution.
    Sell the buildings, land, dorm. etc to pay professors to do research.

    End of foreign student fees.

    I see a big problem —- to get employers involved and getting them to accepting the online learning and to hire the students.

    Doc Robinson

    Huskynut: “It’s possible (and sensible) to hold two truths concurrently – that sensible precautions against controlling excess spread and deaths from Covid are essential. And that most Western governments have done a pretty average job in terms of analysing and responding to the data as it arises. There’s been far too little transparent debate, far too much capture by industry experts and consequent herd thinking. Ginormous, earth-shaking decisions such as blanket suspension of civil liberties for arbitrary periods of time, and vast, vast debts being rung up with negligible oversight.”

    I would agree with this. And I would readily admit that I don’t know what the best approach would be. Covid-19 falls somewhere between scary Ebola and ho-hum seasonal flu.


    @ doc robinson

    thank you.

    John Day

    @ kimyo99
    I’m sorry to not know about what to do when people have ongoing symptoms of fatigue and damage in their bodies. This virus does attack the blood vessel linings, and vascular organs like kidneys take a hit. Vitamin-D is specifically good for the endothelium, but I have no knowledge about how specifically it helps recovery from COVID. I think nobody does yet.


    I’m sorry not to know the laws governing vitamin dosages in New Zealand. 5000 Iu per dose is the max we see here in the US, though somebody found 10,000 IU somewhere. I’m not sure about that. You can buy a big bottle and take a lot. Not sure what else to say. A whole tablespoon of cod liver oil has about 5000 IU of vitamin-D, but yuck, and it’s easier and cheaper to take 5 little pills.

    I currently see that economies and people cannot be in lockdown/quarantine much longer, that masks seem to be good, and handwashing, avoiding big crowds in enclosed spaces, and vitamin-D normalization in all of our bodies.
    If we drop the morbidity and mortality by half, taking vitamin-D, and protect the most vulnerable, then the inevitable spread of this family of viruses to almost-everybody can be far less traumatic.


    I rarely respond to your posts, but I always read them with interest, and I have taken much of your advice. Keep posting.


    My bottle of 5000IU is from Pharmagen and marked “Made in Canada”. I wonder what you think of the NZ vs UK viral video . . .


    The calls to end the lockdown might have been more persuasive if there had been more effort to get people wearing masks, taking supplements, using hand sanitizer, and taking sensible precautions. But instead many people frame it as a political issue of my freedom vs your safety.

    @my parents
    I think the point was to slow down the spread until we can understand more and work out a reasonable treatment protocol. We do not need a vaccine or a cure as long as we can work out a decent treatment to manage the disease. But that takes some time. Probably not as much as many people fear, but it does take time. The calls to end the lockdown and send people back to work will be more persuasive when backed up with data that shows that we have learned to manage the disease. It would have been better to start clinical trials immediately to determine the effectiveness of hydrocholoquine (alone or in combination with Azithrmycin and/or zinc), chloroquine, Remdesivir, Ivermectin. But the Wanker had an agenda to promote Remdesivir, so we are still missing the data. Thankfully the standard of care had already improved pretty quickly, and we have figured out that we do not need so many ventilators.


    Thanks John Day. I figure it’s worth sucking it up and choking down a few 1000IU pills a day! Cod liver oil.. urgh!

    Boogaloo – I didn’t watch the video – I figured it’d make my blood boil 🙂 Is it worth watching, or more of the same? Honestly, the UK response is just unbelievably bad. *shakes head*. I posted a comment on OffGuardian where I was careful not to criticise too badly, not being a UK citizen. I had poms responding – don’t worry, our govt deserves every criticism from anywhere. What a train wreck..

    I see one of the virologists whose part of the CovidPlabB group has uploaded a video of his findings to date. It’s likely to be pretty pedestrian and covering old ground for most readers here. But if you fast forward to around the 12:40 mark, he has built a model of the stats comparing outcomes from the various US states. His key point is that lockdown has a very minor correlation on outcome, but population density is strongly correlated (as you might expect from first principles).
    The model itself is also online here if you’re interested in exploring it.


    Also a quick thanks to everyone who participates in this forum (both regularly and occassionally).

    Having somewhere to rant, protest, discuss, argue has helped keep me sane these past few weeks, and particularly this week. I’d expected that coming out of full lock down as NZ did on Thursday morning would be a happy experience, unfortunately I discovered new depths of rage that I’d been suppressing. Sometimes the only way through hard times is screening off the intensity of emotion until it’s over, and then it comes out.

    I came back to work on Jan this year and was promptly and unexpectedly made redundant. Spent several weeks engaged in legal wrangling with my old firm, then was out. Then Covid/lockdown hit.. no job, no jobs advertised.. watching my redundancy payment ebb away, with no certainty as to when the arbitrary restrictions would be lifted.

    I still have my house, and a little money left in the bank, but shit it’s being hard, having so little agency over my own life, when I’m used to being self-supporting. And yet I know there’s many thousands of people worse off than me.. the stats on how few people in the US have even $500 spare.

    Anyway, thanks all – we may not always agree, but you’ve really helped me “survive” this so far..


    @ john day: thank you. an un-imagined benefit of the pandemic could be that health organizations get serious about addressing vitamin d deficiency. correct this and aside from reducing death from flu/covid respiratory issues you’d likely see a significant reduction in colon cancer incidence / improved survival from same.

    Vitamin D and colon cancer

    Several studies confirmed that increasing vitamin D3 lowers colon cancer incidence, reduces polyp recurrence, and that sufficient levels of vitamin D3 are associated with better overall survival of colon cancer patients.

    if you scan the guardian for articles on vitamin d supplementation you’ll find one with recommendations on how to ‘boost your immune system’ which mentions vitamin d but ends the paragraph ‘Eating your five a day of fruits and vegetables is the best way to maintain necessary levels’ (appears to be discussing vitamin c, elsewhere no mention is made of d3 supplementation. in great britain!#$%^!!), another promoting the falsehood that mushrooms are a viable source of d, and yet another with this to say ‘The evidence so far suggests (with the possible exception of multiple sclerosis and some cancers) that low vitamin D levels are either irrelevant or merely a marker of the disease.’, which also pushed the ‘omigod vitamin d overdoses are going to kill everyone’ meme. you know, cause it’s fat soluble.

    in almost every circumstance, if the guardian provides any sort of health advice, i will be certain to do exactly the opposite.


    in almost every circumstance, if the guardian provides any sort of health advice, i will be certain to do exactly the opposite.
    lol. It’s been extraordinary how the Guardian has morphed from breaking the Snowden files to the current Luke Harding state.
    I remember enjoying George Monbiot on the environment – passionate and informed (though not always 100% correct). Then he morphed into Monbiot the nemesis of Assad and started attacking Vanessa Beeley et al. O.M.G. That’s a zombie movie screenplay right there..

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