80 thoughts on “The not-so-Grand Opening”

  1. see the shadow of that 1st customer waiting at the door in the cartoon?

    creepy scary music playing in the background

  2. Former NYT exec editor Howell Raines on MSNBC: “This moment is introducing Americans to a new civic experience: As a parent or grandparent are the policies and pronouncements of this president a danger to your children?”

  3. This chart shows why COVID-19 is not “like” the flu, or car accidents, or anything else.  Those happen over a year.  About forty thousand people have died in roughly seven weeks.

  4. The idiocy of those like Dr. Oz and Dr. Phil is stunning. They are comparing apples to anvils. OK so the pandemic that most people would compare this to would be SARS in 2003. Here’s the difference. The 2003 SARS pandemic resulted in about 8000 people being infected worldwide with 29 of those cases in the US. The death toll was 9.6% worldwide, with no deaths in the US. Does that sound anything like the COVID-19 pandemic? The only things that the two had in common is that both are corona viruses that originated in China and that there’s no vaccine or specific treatment for people who have contracted it other than treating symptoms and providing supportive care.

  5. patd…  you post the best cartoons!
    Got up early this morning to go to a local independent small grocery store…  scored a 4 roll toilet paper pack and a big bottle of sangria…   I’m saved!  🙂

  6. tiptoe…  that was so sweet!
    Rick and I are giving money to the local food bank… it’s in the basement of Rick’s church.  I thank the goddess that we don’t have need of it.
    BiD…  yeah… agree…  this will change the way a lot of people behave as consumers.  I look around me and say… I have everything I need.  That’s the key… figuring out the difference between a need and a want.  You know… like I need toilet paper…. but I wanted that bottle of sangria 🙂

  7. Anything less than another $1trillion not enough for “small” business loans if GOP let’s hedge fund companies, lobbyists and law firms under 500 employees get first in line. 

  8. My employer has well-under 500 employees and he had to have lawyers and the banker try to figure out how to qualify…and now the money is gone…what a fiasco.    I once went for 5 years without a raise.  If the SBA funds don’t come through, there will probably be a pay-cut if they can still call me back. Congress is clueless as to how this country actually functions.    Again, this should be a wake-up call to the fragility of our so-called, tremendous economy.    It’s been built on the backs of of many, to prop up the lifestyles of the few.    What is the cost of someone filing bankruptcy over a medical bill?   What is the cost of a family not being able to pay rent, let alone afford a house, when they have to live in a shelter or their vehicle?   What does that do to the ability of their kids to learn?  What does that do to the rate of domestic violence? (Abuse calls have gone up 6x because of the stress of the Trump plague.)    Trump’s numbers will go down as soon as those who are still in his corner actually experience the cofeve or know someone who suffers/dies.   So far, I only know one person; the husband of a former co-worker.  I’m off to see if Denmark’s soft reopening is working or not.  

  9. Poobah, and therein lies the problem.  A fund that is administered in the first instance by banks and is overseen by Mnuchin (who if you’ll recall hails from Goldman Sachs).  
    Renee, TP is no longer a pressing problem down here in East Bumfuck.  I’ve seen it in WalMart, Kroger, Food Lion and even in Dollar General (although one should don a full body condom before going into DG).  You might not see your favorite brand, but there’s generally at least one major brand available in all of them (DG being the one exception – they had their house brand, and thank you but no.)  Paper towels are a bigger challenge – they are catch-as-catch-can.

  10. There may be a world wide change on what level of air pollution is acceptable for life.  During the last week I have been seeing more and more articles, with photographic proof, of how locations and cities around the world are clearing up.  Blue sky is being seen for the first time in years, and the citizens are seeing it.  Pollution is something that creeps up on you.  I lived with the infamous Denver Brown Cloud, something so nasty that it could cloud up contact lenses in an afternoon.  I had many turn rubbery because of it.  When auto pollution standards were tightened up in the eighties you could see the change as the air cleared.  We also saw it get bad starting in the sixties, but very bad in the seventies. 
    We can add pollution control to the list of “socialistic” things that will probably come out of the COVID-19 pandemic.

  11. BB  Yes, the brown smudge in the distance is gone in Dallas, too.  I can now see the overpass in the distance, with few vehicles on it.     Maybe the world needs to keep up with stay-at-home Sundays or something.   Folks aren’t gonna travel for awhile, at least not by air.  Cruise ships are history.   As much as I want to go to NYC when this is over, I know it’s gonna be year(s) not months.   

  12. From Inside Hook Newsletter:

    BY BONNIE STIERNBERG / APRIL 17, 2020 10:27 AM

    Former Trump “fixer” and current minimum-security prison inmate Michael Cohen will reportedly be released early due to the coronavirus pandemic.
    Cohen, who was formerly Donald Trump’s personal attorney, is currently serving a three-year prison sentence in Otisville, New York. He was originally slated to be released in November 2021. As CNN reports, Cohen has not personally contracted the virus, but 14 fellow inmates and seven staff members at the prison have tested positive.
    Cohen will reportedly have to complete a 14-day quarantine at the prison before he can be released, after which he will be allowed to serve out the remainder of his sentence under house arrest. (In other words, he’ll be confined to his home like the rest of us during this pandemic, but fingers crossed that we’ll be allowed to return to normal life before November 2021.)
    Last month, a federal judge denied Cohen’s request to be released early over coronavirus concerns, saying, “Ten months into his prison term, it’s time that Cohen accept the consequences of his criminal convictions for serious crimes that had far reaching institutional harms. Apparently searching for a new argument to justify a modification of his sentence to home confinement, Cohen now raises the specter of COVID-19. That Cohen would seek to single himself out for release to home confinement appears to be just another effort to inject himself into the news cycle.”

    Silly judge. 

  13. 33,686 = U.S. Combat Deaths in the Korean War.
    33, 286 = U.S. Covid-19 deaths (as of today.)
    This puts things in perspective, doesn’t it?
    58,318 = U.S. Combat deaths in the Vietnam War; all the names are inscribed on the Vietnam Memorial “Wall” on the National mall in Washington DC.  
    When the Covid-19 deaths get to that number, the Democrats in Congress should propose building a similar memorial monument, but we will have to wait a while to get the final count.
    And they should propose, when we build the wall, that we will “Make Trump pay for it.”
    I am sick of the Democrats always taking the “high road.”  The only way to fight Trump and the Republicans is to get just as nasty as they are.  Because you know this is just what they would do if Hillary was President right now.

  14. Let’s not compare armed combat effects on the participants with the completely different modalities of Covid.

  15. Very important to keep making the point that SFB is the most incompetent world leader.

  16. Nash, aside from using combat deaths to suggest that the number of deaths from Covid-19 is a significant number, the limited meaning of the comparison is akin to the limited utility of comparing Covid deaths to highway deaths or to cancer  or to gun violence deaths to justify doing less or than more to prevent them.  The context of each is different. All that said, I don’t mind seeing the respective numbers – causes me to think about more meaningful comparisons., like the plague or small pox – you know, killer diseases in the good old days.

    Oh, and your suggestion that dems stop taking the high road, OK, I’m good with that.
    Flatus might have a different reason for avoiding comparison to wartime deaths, an objection he spent a career earning..

  17. A relevant number, of the 4000 sailors on the Air craft carrier, USS Theodore Roosevelt, 600 of them tested positive for the corona virus, most of them nonsystematic so far.  Says something about areas where we have little testing but major out breaks.  Until we get testing widely available, where we can test hundreds of people in contact and in the same area  of every positive case we are not ready to open up any part of this country.  Opening up any place is just to ask for a corona hotspot.

  18. Nash is just giving you arguments that Republicans can wrap their Lima bean-sized brains around.  Don’t overthink it.

  19. it’s time the masses come up with a lively tune for the times.  something on the order of 

    “hey, hey Donald J, how many ‘mericans you killin’ today”

    or something like the old labor song

  20. The examples I mentioned (apples to anvils) came from Repubs blathering about well we have this many deaths from ____, …so why should we/aren’t we overdoing this/ etc.  And I’d rather think about this than the shit on my desk.

  21. RR, good for you! I missed my calling.  I would have been a great philanthropist. 
    TV doc’s eh? Phil is only a Ph.D. type counselor without a current license, I hear. Oz is a heart guy and Drew is a shrink. Only Faux News would champion them and only the ignorant dictator would listen to them and then act on it.
    Hooray for Cuomo! He could have said that the dictator should get up off his big…whatever and get to work. All he does is watch TV and golf. 
    Car accidents aren’t CONTAGIOUS!   Oz & Phil are Oprah people? Really!
    I hear there’s corruption with that bail out money.  To be expected by the repubes who want NO oversight, of course. Greed as usual.
    BB, Mother Nature’s taking back her planet…by getting rid of people. Turtles are hatching, air is cleaner, whales are frolicking, goats are taking over small cities.
    Hart Island off the Bronx is filling up with unclaimed Covid-19 bodies in unmarked, pine boxes.  Someone should build a nice shrine  or memorial of some kind to them all. Apparently bodies from all kinds of catastrophes are buried there by the thousands including typhoid Mary. The prison system runs it and soon the park department will.’

  22. TT, there is a lot of fun to be had with the auto accident death comparison.  Drivers have to take tests and be licensed, there are shitloads of restrictions on drivers and they can lose their license or their freedom for violating the restrictions whether the violations injure or kill another.  It can be taken to further extremes if one wants to noodle it further.  

  23. The Korean War lasted 3 years. 33,686 dead
    Our CoVid19 ‘war’ has been 2 months. 33,386 dead
    If this C19 slaughter lasts as long as the Korean War did, the number of Americans slain will be in the neighborhood of 600,000, roughly the estimated number of people killed in the Civil War. The 1918 – 1920 Flu took an estimated 500,000 to 850,000 American lives. 
    None of these comparisons take into account the tremendous growth in the number of Americans from 1860 to 1920, to 1950, to 2020. Also I’m not taking into account that the deaths of the previous three disasters were primarily among young and fit people, whereas our present disaster seems to be hitting the old and infirm people hardest.

  24. So, this is how TX unemployment works.  After you file, there is something they call “the waiting week,” while they wait for your employer to verify the info you submitted on your first claim.   They mail your employer a document to mail back to them.  As of today, my employer has received nothing from the unemployment administration.   If you only knew how much trouble we have with mail at my company.   We constantly get mail for the other company in our building and for a company with the same street number, but a different street, as well as random other things.  I just spoke with my boss and we are missing other mail we were expecting, as well. What a cluster. 

  25. Yep, Pogo.  It’s the weak and wrong comparison Phil, the Ph.D. was blathering about.  Here’s what he said on Laura Ingraham, Fox News.
    “The fact of the matter is, the longer this lockdown goes on, the more vulnerable people get,” McGraw said. “And it’s like there’s a tipping point. There’s a point at which people start having enough problems in lockdown that it will actually create more destruction and actually more deaths across time than the actual virus will itself.”
    The TV personality continued, noting that the country doesn’t shutdown over every day deaths that result from car accidents or smoking.
    “Two hundred fifty people a year die from poverty, and the poverty line is getting such that more and more people are going to fall below that because the economy is crashing around us, and they’re doing that because people are dying from the coronavirus. I get that,” McGraw said. He added: “The fact of the matter is we have people dying, 45,000 people a year die from automobile accidents, 480,000 from cigarettes, 360,000 a year from swimming pools, but we don’t shut the country down for that, but yet we’re doing it for this? And the fallout is going to last for years because people’s lives are being destroyed.” 
    The video.

  26. Phil and Oz are examples of what too much undue attention breeds.  Both are clowns pumped out by the Oprah co.  You get a show, and you get a show, and you get the idea.    

  27. Tom Friedman on CNN just now: “In electing Donald J. Trump as president the American people did the most reckless thing they’ve ever done in our history.”

  28. Has anyone noticed that Biden rarely appears on TV, and that when he does he has nothing of substance to say?
    For every minute of Biden we get an hour of Cuomo who looks a hundred times more “presidential” than Joe.
    Biden needs to get his act together quickly or Trump will succeed in blaming the Democrats for the Covid-19 mess.   Trump is working on that now.  So far, his tricks haven’t worked, but we should NEVER count him out. 
    In spite of all his mistakes, Trump could get re-elected.  He will keep trying various strategies until he finds one that works.
    Impossible, you say?  That’s what Hillary thought …  “No way this clown can beat me.”

  29. The White House “press conference” begins …
    Let’s see if Trump continues with the “Armed Liberation” theme that he was tweeting about earlier today.
    Will he continue to encourage right wing extremists with guns to threaten Democratic governors?

  30. What did Tom Friedman do to stop SFB from being elected?  Here’s a hint.  He’s one of the reckless Americans!

  31. I sincerely, sincerely hope that the folks that Trump is trying to incite to take to the streets in Michigan, Minnesota,  and elsewhere, get the virus.   I hope Trump kills off his own base with his inability to act in a responsible manner, which includes shutting the F up and not making things worse.    No flaming tildes.  Sincerely. 

  32. SFB was thankfully brief before turning the podium over to the white angel of death to misrepresent the data. Fuck. I’m at 3 shots in two minutes. 

  33. Nash – I do get where you’re coming from with regard to Joe not being an exciting candidate.  However, he’s got three things going for him.
    1) Trump now has a track record in the political realm, including contributing to the deaths of Americans, while claiming no responsibility for anything.  2) Joe is likable and will turn out voters that Hillary could not.  There’s a slug on my patio that would be more popular and a better prez than Trump.  
    3) Joe will have a female VP with more energy and personality than he has.  Personally, I hope it’s Elizabeth Warren, but his running mate will energize the ticket.
    *Also, folks will understand the benefits of a government that actually supports them, rather than one that leaves them twisting in the wind.  The fear of universal healthcare, etc., will seem less scary and more necessary as time goes on.

  34. The Great and Powerful Wizard of Trump says …
    “Pay no attention to the virus behind the curtain!”

  35. every time that squid appears on television more and more outside his hardcore idiot base drop right off the chump train. Biden and his advisors know what they are doing. It ain’t their first Calgary Stampede.

  36. I don’t think the chump train is even going to make it to the election. I’m expecting total Drooling Marius any day now.

  37. blueINDallas:   
    You make some very good points.  Yes, Joe is more likable than Hillary, and a dynamic female VP will help a lot.

  38. Trumps’ Covid-19 Task Force …
    The situation is spinning out of control and all they can do is spew meaningless numbers about things that are “going to happen” in the future.  (Trust us!)  This is just “happy talk” to please the Malignant Narcissist.   
    The  Midwest, the South, and the Rust Belt are about to EXPLODE in new infection cases and deaths, and there isn’t one damn thing they can do about it.

  39. Texas is a top 5 state and dumfuk Abbot plans to start opening it the fuck up?  Stupid motherfucker. 
    Kudos to MSNBC cutting from President Asshole to Nancy. Good on you Ari. 

  40. Yesterday, they said that Trump was going to leave it up to the governors to decide when they were going  to re-open their states.
    Today, Trump wants Michigan and other states “liberated”.

  41. Corey, there’s a reason for SFB to take opposite positions on every issue on alternate days. When he does that he can say “I told you that….” no matter what happens. He is so BAD at doing it without people noticing. 
    He’s very transparent – in the “easily seen through” sense of the word. 

  42. 1. It doesn’t look like MN gov Walz (D) is getting pushed around. 
    2. In my opinion it isn’t fair to blame Tom Friedman (MN-D) for trump. He just didn’t help. I’m still pissed off with him about ’16, but not as much as my colleague in rural CA is.
    3. Is it possible that C19 can boost the IQ of the Solid South ? Can it at least shake their political delusions ? Or, is it the ‘Soiled’ South rather than the ‘Solid’ South ?
    4. I subscribe to the image offered by my colleague in tidewater SC, Mr Sturgeone: ‘Drooling Marius’ seems to be the template for trump’s transformation. If I were Biden, I’d be a murderous Sulla. Fortunately for me, I’m not Biden.

  43. XR, shake the Deep South? Nope. The Deep South is bought in. But if you hold out some hope watch the Doug Jones race in AL.

  44. TX Gov. Abbott is actually listening to the scientists.  He’s not going to announce how the re-opening will happen for another 10 days.  He said it’s got to be done correctly or it will all unravel, despite being harangued by the likes of car dealer, Huffines, who’s a real, Texas asshat (see link).   The counties were first to act on this (shut down) in TX, and in the end, the counties will make the decision about reopening depending on what’s going on.   Dallas isn’t Houston, Houston isn’t Amarillo…

  45. Greg who says he’s going to listen to scientists?  Who is this guy claiming to be governor of Texas?

  46. He’s not making a formal decision until 4/27…and then it’s up to local govts to agree to open it up.   One wrinkle in all of this is that schools will not reopen until next fall.   Day cares, after-school programs extending to full day programs are needed so both parents can go back to work…but then, again, if folks have to home school their kids for another 6 or 7 weeks AND go back to work at the same time…??? 

  47. Stacey Abrams has a book coming out in June, just before the virtual,  Dem convention.  Our Time Is Now. Hmmmm

  48. Mr Pogo, 
    Re the ‘Solid’ South :
    I have some hopes for Sen Jones, and I hope the scandal hitting GA’s crooked loeffler will knock her out. VA is Blue. NC seems to hate trump, so there’s hope that they’ll replace tillis with a Dem. FL seems to hate trump even worse. TX ag was hit hard by the trump tariff taxes, now the oil business is collapsing. If the big question this Fall is going to be, “Are you better off now than you were 4 years ago?” Texas has to say, “NO WAY !!!” That’s a huge threat to both trump and cornyn. trump can’t win w/o TX or FL. It doesn’t look good for him in TX, and it looks a lot worse in FL.

  49. Gallup has trump approval -11% upside down:

    43% approve; 54% disapprove ( /- 4%, so it could be from 45%-52% to 41%-56%) We should also consider that not all of those who approve will vote for trump, because they may still like Biden more.
    I really think that we’re going to get through this catastrophe alive and kicking.

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