Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
April 17, 2020

Ranting In A Time Of Plague

by Michael Brenner

WHAT HAVE WE LEARNED?

Collective tragedy is always a learning experience. So it has been for great wars, natural disasters, economic collapses, political revolutions. The COVID-19 pandemic is such a tragedy. Although the number of casualties may pale compared to the carnage of war, there are ancillary effects that leave us shocked and sobered. Most obviously, there is sudden onset of a severe economic depression with attendant social distress whose toll we will be registering for years to come. Then, there is the exposure of how incompetent our public institutions have become – the callous inhumanity of those who rule in Washington matched only by their clownish ineptitude. It is in the realm of these latter intangibles that we should look first for morals and lessons.

Overriding all else is the spectacle of a President, duly elected by the American people, who is a malicious psychopath with not a single redeeming trait. A physical, intellectual and emotional spectre who would defy our imaginative powers were he not on display before our eyes. He has gathered around him a witch’s coven of scoundrels, crooks and crackpots as bereft of mind and ethics as he is. They also are inveterate liars; Trump himself is a congenital liar since clinical narcissism is inborn. Yet, we refer to this motley assemblage as an ‘administration’ – in our impulse to ‘normalize’ the abominable. No dry bill of particulars is necessary, nor could it do justice, to the squalid theater we see played out before us on a daily basis. This man, at this moment, is viewed favorably by 46% of the public. That reality eclipses everything else.

There is no organized opposition worthy of the name. This is the second great failure of our democracy. The Democratic Party creaks under the weight of geriatric nominal leaders – plodding along without conviction, without will, without the integrity to free itself from the monied interests and the self-serving careerists who have dragged it into the mire. Yes, they may succeed, come November, in sparing the Republic the coup de grace of four more Trumpian years. This despite their suicidal instinct in choosing Joe Biden to bear the standard – a man barely robust enough to keep the banner from dragging in the dust on his slog along the campaign trail. This bunch can’t even get themselves to a microphone for a news clip at a time of historic crisis aggravated by the atrocious sins of the existing government. Surely, a first. Worried about Covid-19 contagion? Order a box of alcohol wipes from China. Instead, Biden makes a call to Trump for what both agree was a ‘nice conversation.’ What does that get him?

Cuomo has to placate Trump with soothing words – even at the expense of lying about how much aid New York actually received from Washington – since the lives of his people are at stake. For Biden, the opposite is true; avoiding soothing words is crucial since the November election is dependent on undercutting Trump and discrediting him.

Three, the United States is a poorly governed country. Manifest ineptitude in performing collective functions is by no means limited to Washington under Trump. It has become a feature of the institutional landscape. True, the Trumpites have launched a dedicated campaign to realize the anti-government fanatics’ wet dream of disabling all public agencies.  FEMA and Homeland Security are but the most glaring example of departments stocked with hacks capable only of crippling the organizations that they are supposed to direct. They even corrupted the Center for Disease Control. Its leaders, evidently eager to curry favor with the madman in the Oval Office, gave its stamp of approval to the unproven – and dangerous drug HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE that Trump’s been promoting as the Silver Bullet to cure Covid-19. (April 4-6) Luckily, saner heads prevailed, or a conscience was pricked, and these panting spaniels withdrew the recommendation from their website.

The anti-government cabal’s techniques range from putting government agencies on starvation financial rations to infecting them with hostile personnel to leaving key executive positions unfilled (15 senior slots in the Treasury alone) to circumventing the law by dictating what they can and cannot do - with the backing of collaborators in the judiciary. (The Supreme Court majority is now prepared to go so far as to have citizens die in order to tilt an election toward a favored Republican). Let us bear in mind, though, that performance lapses are recurrent at all levels – private as well as public, and that they predate Trump. It took Barack Obama four years to get his health care website (more or less) up-and-running. In addition, his misbegotten hand-outs to the financial predators laid the basis for today’s looming meltdown. Moreover, the Obama strategy ignored the plight of states and municipalities – forcing deep cutbacks in all public services – the price for which we are paying now during the Corona virus crisis.

At local levels, just look at the condition of infrastructure, of pension funds – of public health. The extremity – and, frankly, the absurdity - of what’s happening in the health sector is highlighted by what we see elsewhere in the world. Face masks, including ones that actually provide protection, are readily available throughout East Asia – and elsewhere. A personal anecdote: relatives in Tunisia are mailing me N95 masks which they purchased in their neighborhood pharmacies. Indeed, as of April 8, Tunisia had produced by their own resources, and distributed 30 million masks to a population of 11 million. The equivalent here would be 1 billion masks! (Minus the 1 million sent express to Israel by the Pentagon as a ritual gift of fealty.) In America, we are offered instructions on how to sew a (probably useless) mask out of discarded T-shirts. MAGA!! Hospital directors fire nurses who buy their own equipment out of concern that they will be upstaged and exposed as the callous, profit obsessed bozos they are. Yet, we blind ourselves to the realities of other nations – because to do so is embarrassing, because our so-called leaders are protecting their behinds, and because we compulsively retain our dogmatic faith in American superiority.*

The readiness of executives to do anything necessary to protect against exposure of their own failures or illicit actions has become commonplace within our institutions. The current Corona crisis puts that reality into the headlines – as with the despicable act of the Pentagon in dismissing summarily Captain Brett Crozier whose petition made known that his superiors were prepared to sacrifice his crew’s lives to the imperative of hiding their own errors. Is this notion that ‘anything goes except accountability’ any different from Harvard’s studied silence about its embrace of Jeffrey Epstein or its abrupt sacking of a professor who dared reveal that the President was sweeping under the academic rug rampant sexual abuses? We all have personal experience of similar stories.

As to the Crozier scandal, let’s be clear: it is not a matter of ethics alone, but also of ability to meet critical obligations. In the event that the country found itself at war against a serious enemy, it is a dangerous liability to have in positions of command people like Secretary of Defense Mark Esper (hack lobbyist for Raytheon and the Aerospace Industries Association ), Naval Secretary Thomas Motly – who missed his calling as a political commissar in the old Red Army, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs Mark Miley and Chief of Naval Operations Mike Gilday who both are testament to the Peter Principle that determines promotion in today’s military. They would either be washed out in the wake of gross failures, or continue to be albatrosses dragging out pointless missions like the 17 bemedaled but clueless U.S. generals who have proven so useless in Afghanistan. As it is, they seem unable to keep their warships from slamming into inanimate objects in placid waters.

Here are Motly’s last remarks before riding off to join corporate boards:  “The men and women of the Department of the Navy deserve a continuity of civilian leadership befitting our great Republic, and the decisive naval force that secures our way of life… he acknowledged that he “lost situational awareness” during his address to the Roosevelt’s crew.”   “There is no excuse, but perhaps a glimpse of understanding, and hopefully empathy. I am deeply sorry for some of the words and for how they spread across the media landscape like a wildfire.”   (The New York Times – ever twisting its hat with eyes averted in the presence of intimidating Presidential authority – features a long letter from Motly justifying his actions, 4/7.  Only 3, 1 Republican, 2 Democrats, protested Crozier’s mistreatment. Among the silent chorus were the 22/23 aspirants to the Democratic nomination who bored us stiff for fifteen months with their unceasing calls for “LEADERSHIP!” ‘Profiles In Courage’ is not a best-seller at the Capitol.  Even Dr. Fauce doesn't have a copy.

Absence of accountability is incompatible with good governance. That is especially true in democracies where accountability is ultimately downwards. In a country like China, where accountability is primarily upward, the circle can be squared by the occasional resort to putting some miscreant up against the wall. We don’t have that luxury. Here, it is only the weak, the indigent and the naïve who need fear punishment – of any kind. The powerful and well-connected worry less about a last cigarette than about their first.

In compiling a list of factors that have contributed to the drastic decline in the performance of American institutions, this parochialism figures prominently among them. We put up with levels of dereliction matched in the developed world only by Britain. Think of the debate over Medicare-for-All and like proposals. As alluded to in an earlier commentary, the best national medical insurance systems (as confirmed by the WHO and other independent bodies) are in Western Europe, Canada and Japan – France topping the list. Yet, their expenditure on those systems is only 2/3 of what we pay for our own ramshackle non-system. That fact is ignored. Instead, the political class agonizes over the specious issue of whether we can afford it. Joe Biden has pledged to veto any such plan on grounds that it would cost $35 trillion – or whatever number has floated into his fog-bound mind. This lethal combination of ignorance, dogmatism and fidelity to special interests has come to be a hallmark of how we approach government and the meeting of collective needs.

A full treatment of the several intertwined, mutually reinforcing elements that have led us along the path of decline is well beyond the limits of a brief commentary. A few, though, do deserve to be mentioned for what – one hopes – might be future reference. One is the ‘privatization’ craze. It has become the preferred method for transferring public assets to private profiteers. The effects are degraded services, the loss of expertise in public bodies, the exploitation of workers and the abandonment of intelligent planning (ventilators anyone?). With the COVID-19 affair, we’ve reached the ultimate privatization: the Federal Reserve has hired BlackRock to conduct its operations on the bond market as the central component of its $4 trillion Quantitative Easing strategy (BlackRock itself being the dominant player on that market).  The same effects have been produced by the swarm of hedge funds and private equity who are parasites feeding on the prostrate host that is the real economy and its dependents. American society celebrates, and empowers, these critters. Then there are the ‘consultants’ – the locust hordes which our culture designates as vital contributors to the good works of government, of business, of universities, of charities, of sports teams, of hospitals, of failing marriages, of the US Army that puts guns in their hands. They, too, add to the toll on public competence and collective services.

Another anecdote: the city of Austin, Texas has hired a consulting firm to advise them on designs for a reconfiguration of the street that runs in front of the University of Texas. Should the sidewalks be 8’ wide or 10’ wide? Curbed or uncurbed? With bicycle racks or without? These matters evidently are beyond the competence of the city government, and of the University’s 3,000 strong expert faculty.

‘My Kingdom for a tape measure!’ How about a 69-cent face mask?

*Consider this. During WW II, the Kaiser shipyard in Richmond, CA – along with its 17 counterparts - were able to construct 2,710 Liberty ships between 1941 and 1945 (an average of three ships every two days), In other words, it took each yard just twelve days to put a ship in the water.  That was the work of Rosie the Riveter and her colleagues. Today, we struggle to produce a few thousand $1 face masks - much less reliable COVID-19 test kits. Of course, back then the country was led by responsible adults – not the bunch of clods and delinquents we’re stuck with nowadays.

 

Posted by b on April 17, 2020 at 14:00 UTC | Permalink

Comments
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I stopped reading at "who is a malicious psychopath with not a single redeeming trait".

I don't come to MoA for partisan politics. I come to read the truth, which seems to be in short here supply recently.

Posted by: Don Wills | Apr 17 2020 14:14 utc | 1

Thank you for this. Time somebody called a spade a spade.

Mr. Brenner has shown a talent for invective in the past.

Nothing partisan about it, an equal opportunity offender.

Posted by: Bemildred | Apr 17 2020 14:18 utc | 2

Well and artfully crafted rant. I wish all rants were are cogent!

The picture sketched? It seems to be a detailed description of.."collapse".

Wally thinks of the coyote and roadrunner...coyote runs off cliff, but falls only when he realizes that the ground has collapsed under himself.

For the moment...people, like 'b', are looking down...

What's next? QED

"film at 11" they used to say...

Posted by: Walter | Apr 17 2020 14:27 utc | 3

How to move forward? Don Wills, true the tone is more derisive than critical, but coming here to sit in judgement of others is what gives the place its charm. Cue me up another scotch, b.

Posted by: Stumpy | Apr 17 2020 14:28 utc | 4

If this virus is not a nasty flu, then what is it? A plague? Similar in effect as the Black Death? Had 2 members of my family and a dear friend catch this thing. 2 of them suffered just 3 days of a fluctuating fever and cold symptoms. After that it disappeared. Only one, my aunt, in her early seventies, had to be put on a respirator. But is recovering well. Is it worth it to bring our economy to absolute devastation, where good people lose everything, end up destitute, having to live in the streets, with no where to go? And rely on bureaucrats, our government, whether state or federal, Democrat or Republican or Socialist, for their daily bread? What about people with severe mental health, who need to be away from home, need a job to maintain their stability, now with no work or money, will fall off the deep end, even commit suicide because they have no where to turn? Is it worth it ? Everything we’ve been doing? Why in other periods in history, with similar diseases, nothing was shut down as profoundly as being done these days, and life went on? People did die, not to mock their passing. But it brings me back. If not a nasty flu, is it worth it?

Posted by: Jose Garcia | Apr 17 2020 14:29 utc | 5

Agree with #1. Our leader, as imperfect as he is, as we all are, is the only leader we have. If he fails to lead us through this crisis, we all fail. IMHO aside from occasional politic-ing, answering charges of one kind or another against him, often the opposite from day to day (e.g. one day he's trying to control everything, now he's abandoned control to the overwhelmed governors), is doing an acceptable job, considering the problems he;'s facing.

Posted by: Seward | Apr 17 2020 14:30 utc | 6

Hello,

Couldn't agree more with Don in comment 1, the newfound lust for censorship and evangelism for official right think found here is disappointing, this seems no longer to be a place to ask questions and seek truth sincerely.

Thank you and good bye,

M

Posted by: M | Apr 17 2020 14:33 utc | 7

What is now obvious has for a long time been concealed: the U.S. is not a democracy, there is no such thing as a "free market", capitalism has proved incapable of meeting the most basic needs during a crisis, there are no leaders accountable to anyone other than our ruling oligarchs, the U.S. is anything but a "bastion of freedom", and most other nations have plenty of justifiable reasons to hate the U.S.

The only question remaining is how long will folks in the U.S. hide from these truths and do nothing about them?

Posted by: Trisha | Apr 17 2020 14:40 utc | 8

@ Don Wills | Apr 17 2020 14:14 utc | 1

I agree this is ridiculous. Trump may be a lot of things, but the last thing he would EVER want to do/happen in this election year where was cruising along home-free, is to have this horrible pandemic blow up in front of him.

Also, he would NEVER have taken along and risked his entire family on a useless state visit to India where all they did was attend meaningless photo-op events and watch Indian kids dance the Hindi cha-cha.

Not even his chief of staff Mike Mulvaney went alond (unheard-of for CoS to not accompany a potus on official state visits).

This tells me Trump was (kept?) in the dark about true depth of pandemic risk brewing.


Posted by: gm | Apr 17 2020 14:43 utc | 9

A fine rant. Well said.

An honest economist (back in the day when there actually were still a few) once said that the key to a nation is whether it ruled by an establishment, or an oligarchy.

An "establishment" is old-money connected etc., but has some sense of ownership and duty. An establishment is willing to forgo short-term profits in favor of long-term strength, because they expect that they or their heirs will be around to have a piece of it. "Establishment" leaders would be FDR, Eisenhower, DeGaulle, Bismarck, Lee Kuan Yew...

An "oligarchy" has no interest in the long-term prosperity and strength of the nation - or perhaps, they simply have no faith in it. They are motivated to strip-mine the nation of all wealth while it lasts, because if they don't someone else will. They can live in walled compounds and go to private doctors, and if it all falls apart they can just gather up their loot and sail away on their yachts.

Posted by: TG | Apr 17 2020 14:44 utc | 10

Very good.
I particularly liked:" ..We put up with levels of dereliction matched in the developed world only by Britain..."
See below link for example
https://www.rt.com/op-ed/486065-uk-care-homes-disregard/

As to Jose Garcia@5 any decent community would do all that it could to save the lives of its members.

Posted by: bevin | Apr 17 2020 14:45 utc | 11

For Trump, Brenner can thank the silver-tongued Obama and his murderous secretary of state, both of whom are worst kind of liars - the kind that tell people what they want to hear while doing the opposite.

Posted by: krypton | Apr 17 2020 14:48 utc | 12

Thank you Bernhard for posting the article from Professor Brenner. Good to hear from him again
It's been a while that I have read him and didn't know that he has his own site ( missed also reading articles from CK and Adam Silverman)

Posted by: Yul | Apr 17 2020 14:49 utc | 13

Thank you for posting this. The US seems to be like coming to your home and finding Bigfoot seated in a living room chair - with no one expressing any surprise or even interest in his presence.

After all the agony and hysteria surrounding the election of Trump for 3 years, they will nominate an elderly warmonger with obvious signs of dementia, who can't seem to keep his hands off women in a creepy fashion - as the alternative. It's as if there was a contest on how extreme a "lesser of two evils" can get. Tack on Covid and financial ruin. It's astounding.

The only positives I can find are evidence that the elite aren't totally in control ( or there would be no Biden or Trump running) AND that the US is too big and dominant to collapse anytime soon - a sort of geo-political inertia. Same goes for the dollar, even if they turn it into high grade toilet paper.

Posted by: Eighthman | Apr 17 2020 14:59 utc | 14

This is the first time I have commented on your site but read daily. This is one of the best reads I have seen. It defines the failure of the country so clearly, to bad Don was unable to hear the criticism of his fearless leader and move beyond it. This failure has long roots and the writer nails it. I remember a few years back sitting down with our commissioner and having her explain to us why they were getting nothing done. city and state moneys were lower and the federal government that had always provided grants no longer did. This was under Obummer.
The long strip mining of the US and the rest of the world by the elite should have made itself completely obvious under trump but I am beginning to think that we humans are no more than a plague upon the earth. We seem to be so intent on sticking to our team the Rs or Ds we are no different then sports fans, who’s obsessed behavior and willingness to spend thousands to watch sports is mind boggling, when often the same people bitch about teachers pay.
Or during the healthcare debates I went to hear the town hall that my congressmen had. 2000 people showed up most screaming about Obama and free hand outs. The 2000 people where mostly over 65, and in this case military so all these people had theirs but didn’t think their own kids or grandkids should have medical care.. what the hell! The Republican Party built the montra of evil government well and the Democratic Party used it the build up the pentagon to the point it takes over 70% of the discretionary budget, to slaughter people in 3rd world countries so we can strip mine them or threaten Russia and China . The virus shows one thing the elites have lots of money to build military stuff that they fleece , so what we have is crap. What the poor soldiers in this country are is fodder for the wealthy.

Posted by: Susan | Apr 17 2020 15:00 utc | 15

To set the record straight I did not vote for that madman.

Posted by: JC | Apr 17 2020 15:04 utc | 16

lol. - Some partisans mount a partisan defense of Trump. I didn’t know such incredibly partisan dummies read MoA. You guys are more than welcome to leave.

Posted by: oglalla | Apr 17 2020 15:06 utc | 17

Something occurred to me this afternoon.

Thinking about the Covid-19, it occurred to me that the governments of the UK, the USA, of Canada and probably many other countries that have had biological warfare labs have all said to their people “We have to do this research because the USSR, the Russians The Chinese, The North Koreans or thr Terrorists may use biological/chemical weapons against us and WE MUST BE PREPARED!!. If they were telling the truth they should have been well prepared as they have spent billions on this research. So, now we can see they were lying because, THERE WAS NO PREPARATION WHEN IT WAS NEEDED? Precisely NONE!


Come this epidemic and what do we see? What we see is that at least the UK government, the US government and the Canadian government were lying. It is quite clear that they were NOT expecting to be attacked. How do I know they were not expecting to be attacked? They had NO stores of hand sanitizer, NO stores of masks, NO goggles, NO stores of PPE, No factories for making any of them. NO troops of Bio/Chem warfare soldiers ready to spring into action and NO PLANS, as far as I can see. Are we to assume that if they were attacked by, say, the Russians, they were going to rely on the Chinese to supply them? (Sarcasm!)

The Chinese government which may or may not be developing biological weapons, (I have no way of knowing) obviously, was relatively well prepared. This is hardly surprising; as they think they have been under biological attack, on and off since the Korean war when they were so attacked. They had factories making the kit they needed and it took only days to ramp up production and get other factories to join in. They had medical troops who were trained and ready to take an important part in controlling the outbreak. They had plans that enabled them to build hospitals for mass intensive care in a matter of days and (I would imagine) plans to turn other structures into holding areas for less serious cases. It also looks as though they had either very versatile organizers or well laid plans for feeding and monitoring people under lock down.

Posted by: foolisholdman | Apr 17 2020 15:11 utc | 18

@ Don Wills,

You may understandably reject criticism to Your chosen party of faith, but i believe the essence of his message was not about partisanship, rather an honest appraisal of the current sad state of affairs, which, if you had bothered reading further, was just as scathing about Obama et al. as it was about your beloved Stable Genius.

I'm afraid your choice to not read further was a far stronger statement of partisanship than anything the author laid out. Your loss, and ours too.

Posted by: Et Tu | Apr 17 2020 15:15 utc | 19

TPTB channel all dissatisfaction in USA into partisan politics where it can be managed, and ultimately dismissed or diffused.

This rant plays into that game.

Only a genuine Movement for democracy (like Yellow Vests in France) will change anything.

!!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Apr 17 2020 15:17 utc | 20

Posted by: foolisholdman | Apr 17 2020 15:11 utc | 19

Yep, exactly. What they have is the CCP, an army that can be called on command, which thinks it's job is to govern, not just get paid extra. And legitimacy, the Chinese people accept their governing, mostly, because they try to do a good job. It's like all this unity bullshit they feed us here (see above), but it's real.

Posted by: Bemildred | Apr 17 2020 15:22 utc | 21

Lol. Trump has under 4 years working for the federal gov. It isnt his system. It is the typical repugs and dingbats system. He is an idiot for leaving his cushy life to join these idiots. It certainly doesnt speak well of his judgement. The people who work there and the people he has hired... Pompeo, Bolton, Esper, etc have worked there for decades. Bolton is an especially rotten character that seems to just keep popping up. If Trump did win another term I wouldnt be surprised to see him back. Remember when that nutjob from Israel that delights in murdering defenseless people came over and gave a speech to Congress? He received an enthusiastic standing ovation. What more needs to be investigated or discussed? It needs to fail and the people will have to suffer in order for more responsible leadership to emerge.The US has waged war on the people of Iraq for 30 fucking years. Everytime the system is about to collapse from its own corruption they just create more money and threaten other countries with destruction if they attempt to divorce themselves from the IMF "global" economy. The idea that the empire exists to help the average citizen is insane and rather childish thinking. The empire exists to maintain power, control, and a dominant position. By the way... during all this crazyness has anybody bothered to follow what is going on with US/China trade? There was a much publicized 1st stage agreement over the easy issues but CNN warned it might collapse putting the global economy at severe risk. Has the US lost billions of dollars worth of economic inputs the last couple months? What is the USA going to look like if that continues? Without China propping up the US economy the US will have to rely on its own resources. As you mention the US cant produce N95 masks let alone coronavirus test kits. Testing might allow the powers that be to not feel frightened about coming into contact with the drooling masses. They might let us out of our cages so we can start foraging for food.

Posted by: Goldhoarder | Apr 17 2020 15:24 utc | 22

I stopped reading after the statement by the new world doctor: the unproven – and dangerous drug HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE that Trump’s been promoting as the Silver Bullet to cure Covid-19. (April 4-6)"

Michael should perform more diligent work. As a starter, this latest study:
https://www.mediterranee-infection.com/early-treatment-of-1061-covid-19-patients-with-hydroxychloroquine-and-azithromycin-marseille-france/

Another study from Sermo indicates that most doctors in the world used Azithromycin (50%) and Hydroxychloroquine (44%) in the treatment of COVID-19 (April 2020).

He should also analyse the use of these drugs from countries that successfully fight the virus while USA, EU and NATO countries account for 91% of all deaths.

Posted by: Rob20 | Apr 17 2020 15:29 utc | 23

Entirely predictable, (knee jerk motion, robotic) Jackrabbit@22.

Your real objection to this, extremely reasonable, statement:
" ...They even corrupted the Center for Disease Control. Its leaders, evidently eager to curry favor with the madman in the Oval Office, gave its stamp of approval to the unproven – and dangerous drug HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE that Trump’s been promoting as the Silver Bullet to cure Covid-19. (April 4-6) Luckily, saner heads prevailed, or a conscience was pricked, and these panting spaniels withdrew the recommendation from their website..."

It is an indication of your general irresponsibility, also exemplified in your casual use of the internet to give, potentially dangerous, medical advice, that you pretend to be dissenting from Brenner because he critiques government. You imply that by doing so he is urging people to support one or other political party. In fact his is a comprehensive critique of the entire political system, whose purpose, for 230+ years has been to prevent the people from governing themselves.
It is a pity to see those tireless and sincere campaigners the Yellow Vests of France drafted into an argument for apathy and defeatism.

Posted by: bevin | Apr 17 2020 15:31 utc | 24

Thanks, Michael, great rant.

It has been sensitble/visible before partly concerning some matters, but finally Pat Lang has turned downright bluntly starkly naked crazy for all the world besides the 46% to see. But once again he apparently starts to erase some of his comment traces if you ironically respond to one or the other.

Not so sure though if Fauci should be singled out too. As what? As part of the to be fired swamp?
https://twitter.com/hashtag/faucifraud?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Ehashtag

Posted by: moon | Apr 17 2020 15:34 utc | 25

thanks michael... i can apply some of these ideas directly to other countries.. i don't care for the usa centric world point view, but i am sure many readers will get into it.. i would like to emphasize a key point you make - accountability, and how there is none.. that to me is the number uno issue in the world today and it is very stark with regard to the usa - accountability... of course obama kicked that concept down the road too... no accountability.. it sucks big time.. we need it desperately...

Posted by: james | Apr 17 2020 15:39 utc | 26

Okay... he's not a psychoapath, Don. I'll settle malignant sociopathic narcissist, which means by definition and demonstration that he would not know empathy were it to leap up and smack him in the face.Liar? We can soften that too. He is a serial fantasists living in the worlds he creates and like a spoiled child demands,raging when his wishes are not instantly gratified. His dictatorial moments would be familiar to anyone who ever worked at his jumped up mom 'n pop real estate shop. His blustering, bullying, blaming, bragging, bloviating, and berating are on display each day now at the late afternoon campaign commercial live-from-the-White-House. He's all yours Don.

Posted by: John | Apr 17 2020 15:42 utc | 27

Everything I know, from my ten years experience of growing crops and studying agroecology, from years of ecological study, from a lifetime of experiencing nature; everything I know tells me that any potential pathogen is best balanced through biodiversity, while forcible violent attempts at segregation and sterilization are doomed to fail.

So it will be with this economically-driven virus.

It's clear that "lockdown" always was a completely insane notion which could never achieve any goal but to deliberately collapse the economy, on a vastly more profound scale than 2008, so the 1% could plunder all real assets.

Meanwhile the terror-deranged wingnuts who have been shrieking for ever more totalitarian assaults on all human agency are the same who assure us the disease will keep coming in waves, a boot repeatedly stomping on a face forever. We see the world they truly want.

Everything about waves and large numbers of asymptomatic carriers is evidence of how insane it is to try to build fortresses and forcibly lock down 7 billion people and build totalitarian police states trying rigidly and violently to drive back an inexorable tsunami, when all wisdom of the ages would say all you can do is go as limp and flexible as possible and let it wash over you.

If waves of Corona sickness comprise some "new normal", then the only sane thing you can do is let the new normal get on with it. That's the quickest way it will become milder, assuming the epidemic has any actual severity right now. That's something constantly shrieked by governments, media, and the obedient authoritarian followers of these institutions, but never proven.

Does anyone know if anyone's compiling stats on what we should call real deaths from the epidemic, as opposed to deaths which really are part of the category "dying of old age"? So far as I can see the government and media simply are commanding that one element of this category arbitrarily be extracted and exalted as of galactic importance to the point that all of humanity has to sacrifice every aspect of our well-being, freedom and happiness for what's clearly intended to be a permanent duration.

And yet all the evidence is that this thing isn't very dangerous to the great majority of people.

No matter what, this bug is going to do whatever it's going to do. The world can either roll with the punches while continuing to live life, at the same time refraining from letting a totalitarian police state make a massive quantum leap; or you can rigidly resist with all your might, dragging everything out and maximizing every kind of collateral social harm while submitting to permanent tyranny.

Posted by: Russ | Apr 17 2020 15:46 utc | 28

Looks like I 'triggered' bevin's Big Pharma sympathies. LOL.

There were several comments about the partisan nature of the 'rant' before mine. But bevin focuses me simply because I've supported Chloroquine. bevin's Big Pharma obsession also blinds him to my numerous prior comments critical of US democracy and frequent mention of the need Movement(s).

!!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Apr 17 2020 15:48 utc | 29

Hey everyone.. not sure how to start
When i was young i was always looking up for US, dont know why, maybe i have been fascinated by a culture, lifestyle, innovations.. when i got older and started to read about what actually happens in the world, i realised that US is not what it seemed to be anymore and i think its just getting worse.. Im not speaking about regular people, of course not, they have worries, goes thru hardships in life, same as me here in Europe.. Basically, no matter if is there Trump, Obama, Bush, Biden, Hillary or easter Bunny.. your government to its core is really sick.. everytime i read about decision US made, how is profit driven at expense of regular people, its a disgrace.. and more and more people in the world can see it.. just Trump himself exposed more the whole thing, chaotic, selfish, rude and arrogant government, not ashamed of anything.

I wish you all.. you good and smart people of the US, to win this struggle, get back on track and have a better future, god bless you in your fight.

Posted by: Martin | Apr 17 2020 15:54 utc | 30

Thanks, Micheal, and I noticed this quote:

"Here are Motly’s last remarks before riding off to join corporate boards:"

As they say on the internets, I see what you did there.

Posted by: Bart Hansen | Apr 17 2020 15:58 utc | 31

Quickly looking through the link to Brenner he is a grant recipient from Ford, Carnegie, National Defence University. Proudly lists consultancies to US Department of Defence and Department of State. Etcetera ad nauseam. If we manage to agree with him on a few clauses of his rant still not someone I’d ever wish to be near.

Posted by: oldhippie | Apr 17 2020 16:01 utc | 32

[...]Naval Secretary Thomas Motly – who missed his calling as a political commissar in the old Red Army[...]

I know this is a rant aimed to an American readership, but it's important to clarify the history and nature of the commissariat of the Red Army.

First of all, the commissars were born out of sheer, imediate, necessity - not out of ideology. The Russian Revolution happened without an army - the Russian Empire simply disintegrated and the Bolsheviks literally walked through the Winter Palace (there were only seven dead - probably the last idealist guards remaining - in the October Revolution per se).

The old imperial army and the imperial "air force" (or the joke the czar called air force) also disintegrated by themselves in the October Revolution. Only the Navy survived intact - but it was confined the the Bay of Finland, in the ports of St. Petersburg (future Leningrad).

The Bolsheviks took power without an army, but, soon after, the future White Army begun to be assembled by the imperial powers. As a result, the Bolsheviks needed an army literally for yesterday.

The Red Army was then created literally by decree, in February 1918. The problem is that modern warfare required experience and specific knowledge, so they literally had to forgive old imperial army officers in exchange for their services. Not all of them accepted, and the few who did were obviously suspected of a possible military coup. The commissar was then created.

Contrary to western post-war beliefs, the role of the commissar was not indoctrination of the masses. The Bolsheviks already had overwhelming popular support in 1917 - even though the peasants supported them not because they had become communists, but because they were granted land and peace thanks to them. The commissar was there as a Damocles' Sword for the ex-imperial army officers.

During WWII, the threat of internal sabotage among the imperial officers in the Red Army still existed, but was vestigial - the German menace was simply to great and too obvious to give any room for a military coup. Ironically, the commissar's role in the Red Army didn't vanish - but was enhanced - during this period, albeit in a modified form.

Here's a contemporary document from Vasily Ivanovich Chuikov, commander of the 62nd Army (which fought in the city of Stalingrad, against the Wehrmacht's 6th Army):

[too long - deleted - b.]

Hitler's late reforms seem to confirm Chuikov's testimony. When the war was already lost and the battlefield went to Germany proper, he desperately tried to emulate the office of commissar in the Wehrmacht. You know an aspect of an army is extremely successful when your enemy tries to copy you.

Posted by: vk | Apr 17 2020 16:12 utc | 33

Excellent, I've learned tree new English words:

coven
inveterate
indigent

Any barfly here knew these?

Posted by: james | Apr 17 2020 15:39 utc | 26

i don't care for the usa centric world point view, but i am sure many readers will get into it..

I am not sure about that. For vast majority of barflies that POV is pretty much inveterate....

Posted by: hopehely | Apr 17 2020 16:12 utc | 34

This post could do with more redeeming qualities. I like the fact that he trashes Trump, but here is something much more damning, more apt and funnier, by Nate White, an Englishman:
https://m.facebook.com/OccupyDemocrats/posts/2575977245828647

Further, even though Trump is admittedly an asshole, he does want desperately to get reelected, and he is right to look to hydroxychlorquine as a means to that end. The author is ignorant of the updated results reported by Raoult in France reporting the successful treatment of three thousand people. And medical doctors in America, sixty-five percent according to a survey, are ready to treat their own families with HCQ.

Posted by: sarz | Apr 17 2020 16:20 utc | 35

that rant is barely scratching the surface.

how about a poem?

Billy met with Jeffrey
after his midday blow
because Billy discovered something
he thought Jeffrey should know

Jeff we finally got it!
the perfect little bug
and here is your protection
for after you get hung

Bill I got to say
the first thing we should do
is try it at my Zorro ranch
on Betty one and two

Jeff, I'm steps ahead
I had the Bettys shipped
just put this on your lips
and give the girls a kiss

and thus it has begun
just as I foretold
a new age now will come
where every heart turns cold

Posted by: lizard | Apr 17 2020 16:22 utc | 36

Thanks for this essay from Prof. Brenner.

In D.C. Human and material costs are never accountable or measured.

But really how in the Universe do we justify -
$84 million for Air force 1 Manuals?


The Air Force quietly announced that Boeing’s manuals for Trump’s new $5.3 billion presidential jets are a bit pricier than your average automobile-repair guides.
President Donald Trump’s much-touted $4 billion deal with Boeing for two new Air Force One aircraft didn’t include a key item: the instruction manuals.

The cost of these flight and maintenance manuals: $84 million, according to a U.S. Air Force contract announcement posted Wednesday evening.

“This contract modification is to modify commercial manuals, update with VC-25B-specific information and deliver integrated manuals for the VC-25B system,” the announcement says, referring to the next Air Force One aircraft by its military designation. “This includes manuals developed by both Boeing and their subcontractors.”

It's Boeing, they need it. Beats the $640 toilet seat.

We are in the mode of Print-away-COVID-19 in whatever amounts it takes. One G7 Finance Minister allowed, "we are trying to avoid a Depression.
I anticipate printing in the hundreds of trillions and in addition there is the $640 Trillion Derivates as per BIS waiting implosion.

Blackrock was kissed on both cheeks and buttocks too; the same gangster cook of the 2008-2009 financial crisis. The same company that needed a bailout in 2008 is hired by governments to distribute the trillions of bailout dollars - printed outta-thin-air.

Its sinister rise and the recent sweetheart and sugar daddy deals, The Fox in the Henhouse Conflict of Vulture Interests galore.

We little ones, descendants of Oliver Twist, it's our tab!

==========

@ Don Wills 1

Here you go, Again. Our apologies your agenda is being ignored. Btw, the descriptor of your objection indeed is well on the target.

Posted by: Likklemore | Apr 17 2020 16:23 utc | 37

*Consider this. During WW II, the Kaiser shipyard in Richmond, CA – along with its 17 counterparts - were able to construct 2,710 Liberty ships between 1941 and 1945 (an average of three ships every two days), In other words, it took each yard just twelve days to put a ship in the water. That was the work of Rosie the Riveter and her colleagues. Today, we struggle to produce a few thousand $1 face masks - much less reliable COVID-19 test kits. Of course, back then the country was led by responsible adults – not the bunch of clods and delinquents we’re stuck with nowadays."

Yes, please let's praise the society which is able to make slaughter machines willingly through the weight of society and culture int slaughter for the gain of the few elites.

Indeed those were the "responsible adults" BULLSHIT

No war or hostility conducted in Western Civilization for the last 500 years has been fought without first of all elite financing of both sides. No democracy emerged that did not continue being an Empire.

Western Civilization is dominated by a small group who control the religions and their "morality" which justify capitalism and the very capital and credit necessary for ordinary commerce. Look at where the centers of Western power are: in DC (standard barer of Calvin) Israel (Zionism) and Riyadh (Wahhabi).

The historical record shows that the US and German industrialists worked together and profited in money and the expansion of power before during and after WWII - they have never really cared who won, for them it's irrelevant.

The last thing we need is "responsible adults" like those - there is no going back to the soft fascism of democracy.

Posted by: Babyl-on | Apr 17 2020 16:26 utc | 38

I constantly have the feeling of being herded into one extreme of "Do Nothing - Let 'er Rip!" or the other extreme of "Obey Total House Arrest - No Dissent Allowed!". Just like the noise about ventilators, wear/don't wear masks, and chloroquine, these controversies seem like distractions away from a close examination of current policies. Why is no one interested in the fact that the UKUS policy is to let the virus burn slowly for a very long time?

The Chinese and others have shown that the virus can be eradicated, and that eradication should be the goal. I still think that Uncle Sam (ever the opportunist) prefers to surround China and friends with the virus as part of their "containment" strategy. Perhaps the Russians or the Chinese will have something to say about this, and soon.

Posted by: Trailer Trash | Apr 17 2020 16:27 utc | 39

Poorly written.

Hits the topics, but because he shoots his wad in the first instance against Trump, he has nothing, not even BBs, left for the rest of the subjects he attacks. Wet pea-shooter stuff for paragraphs after paragraphs. All of which deserve the same targeting as Trump.

The subject is too important for a rant. Surgical dissection, vivisection is called for.

But this was weak soup.

Posted by: Red Ryder | Apr 17 2020 16:31 utc | 40

Posted by: foolisholdman | Apr 17 2020 15:11 utc | 18

Good comments.

Posted by: JC | Apr 17 2020 16:40 utc | 41

@sarz @35
Hyped Malaria Pill Doesn’t Help Clear Coronavirus in Study

Hydroxychloroquine, the 65-year-old malaria drug that President Donald Trump has praised, appeared not to help patients get rid of the pathogen in a small study.

The pill didn’t help patients clear the virus better than standard care and was much more likely to cause side effects, according to a study of 150 hospitalized patients by doctors at 16 centers in China. The research, which hasn’t been peer-reviewed, was released Tuesday.

The drug did help alleviate some clinical symptoms of Covid-19, however, and the patients who took it showed a greater drop in C-reactive protein, a measure of inflammation.

...

Posted by: b | Apr 17 2020 16:47 utc | 42

Posted by: krypton | Apr 17 2020 14:48 utc | 12

Michael Brenner criticized Obama a lot, as I recall he felt that Obama was a narcissist too. ... "equal opportunity offender"?

Concerning Trump, I agree somewhat with Thanassis Cambanis concerning "Make America Great Again". Hello? "Yes we Can"? America the Land of the Free simply seems to have taken of f its soft power mask for all the world to see. National interest?

http://archive.fo/YpS2G

Within the United States, the debate over the country’s shifting place in the world falls into distinct camps. President Donald Trump’s commitment to “Make America Great Again” demands the reassertion of U.S. primacy. The president’s chauvinistic rhetoric, trade wars, and blustering escalations in the Middle East reflect a fantasy of unfettered American power. Trump mistakenly believes that sharing the world with other nations is a zero-sum affair and that the United States must grab what it can rather than try to share the pie. Many observers have placed Trump in the tradition of American isolationism, but that characterization is wide of the mark. Trump has not adopted an isolationist foreign policy. Instead, he has pursued a grand strategy of “illiberal hegemony,” by which he seeks U.S. dominance but dispenses with past imperatives such as democracy promotion and preserving the international liberal order.

You would want to argue with this:
Dr. Michael Brenner: Yet, we blind ourselves to the realities of other nations – because to do so is embarrassing, because our so-called leaders are protecting their behinds, and because we compulsively retain our dogmatic faith in American superiority.*

Not sure though, if I am too fond of the linked footnote in this context:
*Consider this. During WW II, the Kaiser shipyard in Richmond, CA – along with its 17 counterparts - were able to construct 2,710 Liberty ships between 1941 and 1945 (an average of three ships every two days), In other words, it took each yard just twelve days to put a ship in the water. That was the work of Rosie the Riveter and her colleagues. Today, we struggle to produce a few thousand $1 face masks - much less reliable COVID-19 test kits. Of course, back then the country was led by responsible adults – not the bunch of clods and delinquents we’re stuck with nowadays.

Making America great again, after all, and he was quite explicit about it, might mean to once again win wars too. By whatever open or covert means? Against whom first? In a now erased boisterous somewhat indirect way Pat Lang threatened China. It disappeared together with the comment that triggered it and a couple of others. All those mean trolls? The one that triggered it was pretty harmlessly innocent.

As foreign observer and a country on Trump's adversary and/or competitor target list I am obviously aware of the top enemy vs friends list: Iran, China since his 2016 Foreign Policy Speech. There was only one friendly nation mentioned. Just as I am aware of the Trump admins activities that ultimately target Russia and Europe on European ground. Just as there are allies and enemies in South America. America First, Make America great again?


Secondly, we have to rebuild our military and our economy. The Russians and Chinese have rapidly expanded their military capability, but look at what’s happened to us. Our nuclear weapons arsenal, our ultimate deterrent, has been allowed to atrophy and is desperately in need of modernization and renewal. And it has to happen immediately. Our active duty armed forces have shrunk from 2 million in 1991 to about 1.3 million today. The Navy has shrunk from over 500 ships to 272 ships during this same period of time. The Air Force is about one-third smaller than 1991. Pilots flying B-52s in combat missions today. These planes are older than virtually everybody in this room.

And what are we doing about this? President Obama has proposed a 2017 defense budget that in real dollars, cuts nearly 25 percent from what we were spending in 2011. Our military is depleted and we’re asking our generals and military leaders to worry about global warming.

Posted by: moon | Apr 17 2020 16:49 utc | 43

@TG #10

Your list would be more impressive if most of those leaders were not both preceded and followed by "oligarchs".

Posted by: c1ue | Apr 17 2020 16:49 utc | 44

The American people get what they elect and get what they tolerate.

Posted by: GeorgeV | Apr 17 2020 16:53 utc | 45

Posted by: Jose Garcia | Apr 17 2020 14:29 utc | 5

Had 2 members of my family and a dear friend catch this thing. 2 of them suffered just 3 days of a fluctuating fever and cold symptoms. After that it disappeared. Only one, my aunt, in her early seventies, had to be put on a respirator. But is recovering well

One out of 3 needing a respirator means 100,000 out of 300,000 need a respirator.
What would happen to your aunt if a respirator was not available?

Is it worth it to bring our economy to absolute devastation, where good people lose everything, end up destitute, having to live in the streets, with no where to go?

Ask your aunt, and let us know her answer. And what do you think, is saving her life worth it?

Posted by: hopehely | Apr 17 2020 16:56 utc | 46

Thank you for your eloquent astute essay. I concur on every point.

Posted by: ld | Apr 17 2020 17:03 utc | 47

>The subject is too important for a rant. Surgical dissection,
>vivisection is called for.
>
>But this was weak soup.
>Posted by: Red Ryder | Apr 17 2020 16:31 utc | 41

Stone soup indeed. I had to stop before the end, but what I read had no new information, just like most essays on Counterpunch. (I still miss reading Alex Cockburn's scathing essays.)

Posted by: Trailer Trash | Apr 17 2020 17:04 utc | 48

I wasn’t impressed by this essay. “Collective tragedy is always a learning experience”, the first sentence - might be worthy of elaboration (I was just thinking about that myself, and the time-line of various steps taken..) - of course that so, often tragedy is just horror and death, heh, and nothing is, or even can be learnt, put to good use.

As for blaming the US political class, the author has a bad case of DTS. Trump provides a safe and conventional scapegoat, no doubt one of the reasons the Dems and others (e.g. in the EU) bash Trump, it draws attention away from larger issues and focusses on trivial personalia. The author then goes on to condemn the Dems as well, geriatric idiots, etc. and to temper blaming Trump, it is Government as a whole that is at fault, examples are given. So they are all a bunch of ass***, big deal as my neighbor says.

Sure, ‘privatization’ is often a terrible idea, but, hmm, if the Gvmt. is incapable, then privatization might be the way to go?

No doubt FEMA and Homeland Sec. are staffed with ‘hacks’ but the underlying question is, ex. why was Homeland Sec. set up, what purpose was it to serve, how was it to accomplish its goals, or for that matter abandon them as useless, unrealistic, or unachievable, or now completed with success, and disband itself? (It was set up under Georgie Bush - the HL security act (2002) after 9/11.) These questions aren’t raised, so can’t be answered. In fact, this was a PR reshuffle, endless moving around of ppl without any clear goal — while paying some high-ups as cadres that support the regime, plus ‘directly funding some x % in security type roles’ - these are expected to protect, defend and support the elites when the proverbial sh*t, etc. The jab at hedge funds and private equity is …very brief.

The model that should be considered as useful for “analysis”, is a Mafia type functioning playing out on the world stage, or at State level, “a bunch of grifters, fakers, criminals putting it over us.” Sounds very crude, but it provides a counter-narrative, heh, an exercise of the imagination. Neo-fascim, the marriage between Corps and State is a bit more complicated.

Posted by: Noirette | Apr 17 2020 17:04 utc | 49

Posted by: Rob20 | Apr 17 2020 15:29 utc | 23

Unlike Rob20, I kept on reading, but this cheap pot shot at Trump was hardly justified and suggests that Brenner lacks objectivity. China has tested and used Chloroquinine successfully, and the proposed use has been made in France and Australia, as well. There are articles published in science journals that explored the idea even before Trump's announcement, for instance, https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0924857920300881.

Given the fact that a vaccine is highly unlikely to be produced that will be effective against this corona virus, given its nature and the general nature of such viruses, it is imperative that other methods be found to treat patients who get the virus, whether it is a quinine base, intrevenous use of vitamin C, plasma treatment, or some other means of helping people survive the virus with minimal damage. Dissing a method being duly investigated by science just because Trump champions it, is irresponsible.

It hardly matters that Trump may have gotten something right for once. Attacking Trump for something he gets right suggests that the writer is just ranting to promote his ego or mislead us.

Posted by: Blue Dotterel | Apr 17 2020 17:04 utc | 50

@ Rob20 | Apr 17 2020 15:29 utc | 23

As a starter, this latest study:

https://www.mediterranee-infection.com/early-treatment-of-1061-covid-19-patients-with-hydroxychloroquine-and-azithromycin-marseille-france/ is just as bad as Raoult”s first piece of crap.

https://respectfulinsolence.com/2020/04/14/didier-raoult-bad-science-bully/

Another study from Sermo indicates that most doctors in the world used Azithromycin (50%) and Hydroxychloroquine (44%) in the treatment of COVID-19

So? They read the newspapers or listened to that weel-know infectious disease researcher, Donald Trump rather than the two garbage papers.

Posted by: jrkrideau | Apr 17 2020 17:05 utc | 51

Sarz@35
'Further, even though Trump is admittedly an asshole, he does want desperately to get reelected, and he is right to look to hydroxychlorquine as a means to that end. The author is ignorant of the updated results reported by Raoult in France reporting the successful treatment of three thousand people. And medical doctors in America, sixty-five percent according to a survey, are ready to treat their own families with HCQ.'

This has been debunked. Hydroxychlorquine has no benefit.

https://www.cnn.com/2020/04/15/health/new-french-study-hydroxychloroquine/index.html

https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/928798

https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/928798

Posted by: ld | Apr 17 2020 17:13 utc | 52

>The model that should be considered as useful for “analysis”,
>is a Mafia type functioning playing out on the world stage,
>or at State level,

Yes, exactly. One can draw a short straight line from the criminal gangs of the alcohol prohibition era to the current criminal conspiracy known as the "Trump Administration". During Prohibition the profits were huge and so were the bribes passed out from the beat cop right to the hierarchy. Even Uncle Sam's dead hero President John Kennedy came from a family made wealthy in part by selling whisky, supposedly legally, although rumors of bootlegging persist.

Posted by: Trailer Trash | Apr 17 2020 17:26 utc | 53

@ JC.. it is the posters who attack others, implying ignorance and etc, that are the problem.. generally the good comments include the arsenic.. that is the problem...

Posted by: james | Apr 17 2020 17:26 utc | 54

@ Posted by: lizard | Apr 17 2020 16:22 utc | 36

Like just wow!!

For context: See here.

Posted by: gm | Apr 17 2020 17:32 utc | 55

b@43

Please look up the work of Vladimir Zelenko. Here is a recent link:
https://techstartups.com/2020/04/03/updates-from-dr-vladimir-zelenko-now-treated-700-coronavirus-patients-with-99-9-success-rate-using-hydroxychloroquine-zinc-sulfate-and-z-pak-1-outpatient-died-after-not-following-protocol-exclusi/

Sorry, b, your post makes little sense. I note that the report you refer to is not peer-reviewed. But that's the least of it. You do not tell us the protocol that was followed, or the underlying assumptions. Zelenko, who claims astonishing success in cures, without any intubation, uses HCQ with Zinc and Azithromycin. Azithromycin is for the obvious side bacterial infections. But Zinc is even more crucial. The whole point of HCQ is to aid in the transport of Zinc into the cell. Zinc interrupts viral reproduction.

"The Chinese", if I may cite a report from someone or the other out of one and a half billion people, also mention that no one who has been on HCQ for lupus has been infected. The report of scary side-effects of HCQ is a hobgoblin. The drug has for decades been available in France over the counter. It is routinely used as a prophylactic for malaria, for less serious types of the disease. All over the world for decades, without any controversy. For cardiac patients there is a one in a thousand chance of QT wave elongation. But that is with serious doses, as is used long-term for lupus and rheumatoid arthritis. Zelenko's dose for treatment, not prophylaxis, is 200mg per day for six days. That's half the routine dose for malaria prophylaxis.

I repeat, Trump is an asshole, but he is not a total idiot. He knows what it takes to win an election. And he is rightly reaching for help from HCQ to free people from lockdown and total chaos. Zelenko spells out that you treat people with symptoms without waiting. And if you do, you can cure almost everyone.

Posted by: sarz | Apr 17 2020 17:39 utc | 56

Is it worth it [to bring our economy to absolute devastation, where good people lose everything, end up destitute, having to live in the streets, with no where to go?] by: Jose Garcia @ 5 <=== Maybe it is worth it if the good, but blind, people discovered the nation state for what it is? By its own actions and funding objects, the Nation state system invited this type of catastrophe to come, whose they did it in secret?
Maybe it is worth it, if your so called good people, deprived of their comfort, discover it was the bad people who provided to them the comforts they may have lost? Maybe it is worth it, if the bad people entrenched in positions of power and places of authority are forced into the light of day? Maybe it was worth it, if everyone woke up to the fact that two layers exist in our global, international, national, state, county, and cities; the governor layer which has institutionalized corrupt, deceptive, malicious and misleading propaganda and the governed layer which knows nothing, but work and slavery in support of the governor layers so those in that layer can keep their corruptions running?

Maybe it is worth it, if the nation state system is recognized as institutionally regulated, feedback information, propaganda controlled system of human abuse..

The facts remain.. no one has yet explained either the shut down at Ft. Derrick, its timing, nor the relationship of the people at Ft. Derrick and in the international academic institutions related to the activities at those 12 military institutions in Shanghia's system of life sciences, nor the global system of bio-labs throughout the world hidden on government property or military bases. . nor has a creditable study been made public that would expose the cross sharing information relationships. How does Ft. Derrick and its network of western thinking groups interrelate with the 30 to the Shanghai military biotechnology second tier laboratory system, interrelate with WHO, CDC, and the Western system of bio weapon development?

Mr. Michael Bremmer, you have stepped up to the plate, for that we all thank you, but now it is our turn to throw the balls and yours to defend your response to our questions. We need answers that can be confirmed. First who invented this virus.. who let it out of its cage, ... who thought it necessary for one nation to use bio weapons against another nation, can the leaders who approve bio-crimes against humanity be personally identified? why is biotechnology a state secret, how much money is budgeted by each nation in the NSS to crimes against weapons? Be specific please.

Posted by: snake | Apr 17 2020 17:49 utc | 57

The question I have is how will America’s wild ride to destruction end? If history is any guide: a catastrophic war.

Posted by: simjam | Apr 17 2020 17:53 utc | 58

This is ridiculous exceptionalist nonsense. Whinging about poor Captain Crozier, concluding with greatest generation "Rosie the Riveter," an effing wartime propaganda construct, evoking "the Republic" like some slaver from the Calhoun-Clay-Webster era of rhetorical grandiosity, a whole paragraph of sophist psychobabble roasting President Trump, oedipal anxiety coupled with aristocratic malaise, Dr. Bennett is a classic creature of Johns Hopkins University's SAIS, Paul Wolfowitz's "coven." Like his career is separate from the decrepit elite he admonishes.

I tithe 20 percent of my social security disability check to independent journalism. If I wanted to read this kind of crap I'd go back to subscribing to the Atlantic Monthly.

Posted by: Ralph Reed | Apr 17 2020 17:57 utc | 59

Well, I found this a weak rant for it fails to get to the root of the problem, and that's not Trump. Part of the problem is because the root was planted at the USA's birth, and the problem tree was already in full glory by 1914. From that point it's only grown larger and become much harder to uproot since few know the truth of its birth, how it was tended, how the ground surrounding it was further cultivated thus invigorating it, and the degree to which its reality is hidden from view. What I've tried to do in the years I've been commenting here is to pull back the curtain and expose the roots.

As I remarked to my wife this morning in my own little rant: The nation lacks a proper social safety net protecting its citizenry; in its place we have useless billionaires as a deliberate result of policy decisions that go back to 1913 and drastically escalated beginning in 1978. I could've added that what happened in 1978 was a consequence of 1971, which itself was a consequence going back to 1944 and the selection of Truman over Wallace. Yes, the chain of cause and effect stretches back a long ways--to 1787 and the choice to have a basically unrestrained executive managing the national government (Yes, I'm what was known at that time as an Anti-Federalist).

At least the author made mention of the Federal Reserve but didn't call for its disbanding which is one of the biggest roots of the Problem Tree requiring excavation. But most of all he failed to elaborate on the poll numbers supporting Trump as that's the best indicator that we are a "House divided against itself" and as we now see it's no longer capable of standing--We the People have been and continue to be our own worst enemy. And that condition predates the mass application of BigLie Media propaganda which is rooted in very longstanding bigotry.

The author's final failure was to offer any sort of solution nor did he call for national solidarity which will be required to attain a solution. So, I would redline the essay as incomplete and return it to the writer to edit and finish.

Posted by: karlof1 | Apr 17 2020 17:58 utc | 60

THAT is a JEREMIAD worthy of historical revision.

Without doubt, it will weather the tests of time.

Posted by: Pacifica Advocate | Apr 17 2020 18:17 utc | 61

Posted by: james | Apr 17 2020 17:27 utc | 59

many of these cheap one liner critics of b and moa are from names we have never heard from before as well...

Correct.
Laughable when they don't know who Prof Brenner is and where b and some of us have "encountered" his essays.

Posted by: Yul | Apr 17 2020 18:20 utc | 62

Susan @ 15 said in part;"The long strip mining of the US and the rest of the world by the elite should have made itself completely obvious under trump but I am beginning to think that we humans are no more than a plague upon the earth. We seem to be so intent on sticking to our team the Rs or Ds we are no different then sports fans, who’s obsessed behavior and willingness to spend thousands to watch sports is mind boggling, when often the same people bitch about teachers pay."

Yep, for some, it's all about YOUR team, regardless.

ET @ 19 said;" @ Don Wills,
"
"You may understandably reject criticism to Your chosen party of faith, but i believe the essence of his message was not about partisanship, rather an honest appraisal of the current sad state of affairs, which, if you had bothered reading further, was just as scathing about Obama et al. as it was about your beloved Stable Genius."

"I'm afraid your choice to not read further was a far stronger statement of partisanship than anything the author laid out. Your loss, and ours too."

Well said, and true. Grab a clue Don. Absorb a critique once and a while. Your"team" isn't always right. Nor mine...


Posted by: ben | Apr 17 2020 18:20 utc | 63

Dr Brenner expresses what I see and feel about a US owned and run by liars and cheats.

My father loved America and tried hard all his life to be a good citizen but was repeatedly told by others that he could never join their exclusive club since he was born in the Middle East. I guess its just as well he is not alive today to see what those 'Americans' have done to their own country. The US is not the country he taught me to believe in.

Russia and China are exhibiting a humanitarianism that has disappeared from the West that is retreating into plowing and plundering itself. Keep at it, US supremacists, keep digging the hole deeper.

Posted by: AriusArmenian | Apr 17 2020 18:30 utc | 64

@37 - I have no agenda. I didn't vote for Trump. He's a jerk. I am simply looking to be enlightened with truth that is really hard to find these days.

I am reminded of H.L. Mencken's commentary (written 100 years ago) about democracy -

"The larger the mob, the harder the test. In small areas, before small electorates, a first-rate man occasionally fights his way through, carrying even the mob with him by force of his personality. But when the field is nationwide, and the fight must be waged chiefly at second and third hand, and the force of personality cannot so readily make itself felt, then all the odds are on the man who is, intrinsically, the most devious and mediocre — the man who can most easily adeptly disperse the notion that his mind is a virtual vacuum.

The Presidency tends, year by year, to go to such men. As democracy is perfected, the office represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron."

Posted by: Don Wills | Apr 17 2020 18:35 utc | 65

Trump and his neo-confederate mafia were notifying Israeli intelligence about severity of Coronavirus risks back in November ! The news report comes from Israel's 24 hour news service, their french version of CNN. Meanwhile, stateside genius was posturing, declaring covid as hoax they and doing nothing to prepare defeat of virus. Chump's #covidfalseflag and Yt supremacist war gambit will fail, the facts are piling up against gang of exceptional cretins.
https://www.i24news.tv/fr/actu/international/1587061098-le-renseignement-americain-a-mis-en-garde-israel-contre-le-coronavirus-mi-novembre-channel-12?fbclid=IwAR2i_LO2GZFpEO16CSeIMoRIMKjILt-J5NX60lT9g6COdr-0Au-9zFyYUx4

Posted by: Augustin L | Apr 17 2020 18:37 utc | 66

As democracy is perfected, the office of the president represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. We move toward a lofty ideal. On some great and glorious day, the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last, and the White House will be adorned by a downright moron.
H.L. Mencken

Posted by: Dennis Szilak | Apr 17 2020 18:39 utc | 67

Hey, thanks b. I enjoy a bit of florid prose!
Nice rant, Michael Brenner!
Pity about the Penis Envy...

Posted by: Hoarsewhisperer | Apr 17 2020 18:39 utc | 68

If France’s medical care system was so great, why are nurses putting on yellow vests and marching in the Street? All public health care systems are great for minor issues, but awful for more complicated procedures. The US government already controls 60 % or more of US health care, and you want them to have more control?
Socialism was disproven back in 1920 by economist Ludwig von Mises when he wrote “ The impossibility of economic calculation in the socialist commonwealth” . Without markets and price signals generated through competitive free markets, a socialist government doesn’t have the knowledge to allocate resources.
Since then, the USSR, China, western governments have tried to engineer different “mixed economies”, attempting to marry free markets with command and control beaucracies. It doesn’t work well. But we slog along, always in crisis, and proposing more of the same that caused the crisis-more government, more central planning. Let’s try liberty, for once!

Posted by: Brendan | Apr 17 2020 18:40 utc | 69

A 60-ish guy pumped my gas Thursday and asked, "So, do you think China did this to us?"

I'm in Canada, FFS. All I wanted was gas, not the gears. Bristling, I replied that China got stuck with a disease they didn't understand and they had to figure it out from ground zero. And Trump should take a look in a mirror. I don't think I made my point.

What I should have said was, "Do you China would kill its best customers???"

I'm still fuming. But here’s a quote from the 1995 movie Casino, which may summarize how it feels to be Russian, Chinese, Iranian, Syrian, Venezuelan, Cuban, etc.

Nicky Santoro (played by Joe Pesci):
“The coppers blamed me for every little thing out here, and I mean every little f***in' thing. If a guy f***in' slipped on a f***in' banana peel, they blamed me.”

Bartender, one more please.

Posted by: piggly | Apr 17 2020 18:40 utc | 70

I agree with @Red Ryder | Apr 17 2020 16:31 utc | 41

A dull blade rant barely covering some points and far too sloppy on others.

I also am glad to see @vk | Apr 17 2020 16:12 utc | 33

Thank you for this. The Nazis' infamous Commissar Order says it all. The Nazis sought to prioritize killing the most effective of the the Red Army's leaders and organizers, not elements that might be a drag on their fighting capacity or morale.

I also disagree with the characterization of those around Trump as a "witch's coven". Back in the day those accused of witchcraft were victims of the powerful, not some clandestine continental conspiracy of evildoers. The great majority were women who either talked back to some male authority, resisted sexual advances, were old and seen as useless, or otherwise were in the wrong place at the wrong time. Some few might've practiced old folkways that ran afoul of Church dogma, some might've provided an ancient attempt at reproductive choice for women of the time. But they were convenient and politically powerless targets, and the witch-hunts provided a great diversion away from blaming the rich and powerful during the time of the Enclosures, at the same time keeping people deathly afraid of each other.

The witch-hunts and Enclosures were a one-sided class war, not dissimilar to modern "witch-hunts" such as McCarthyism and bailout heists of trillions of dollars.

Posted by: Vintage Red | Apr 17 2020 18:50 utc | 71

Correction to 78 from piggly
Para 3 should be "Do you THINK China would kill its best customers???"

Posted by: piggly | Apr 17 2020 18:52 utc | 72

@no 1
You are a joke, a stupid joke, a joke swimming in no knowledge, please go away and die in a cave.

Posted by: Den Lille Abe | Apr 17 2020 19:05 utc | 73

I arrived in the US as a six-year old child in 1976. Found Times Square quite smelly, biút Ann Arbour Michigan better than my war-depleted Northern Europe capital, Returning fifteen year old in 1966 i sensed the rot had already set in -- except in Berkley California. Now Idread returning with my wife even to the placid Little Dixie and Midwest of Central Misourie or Scandinavian Not´rth Minnesota. If only to rejoin the spirituals song group I sang in in black Churches in Columbia Mo and Jefferson City. But maybe not...

Posted by: JoveBove/區司 | Apr 17 2020 19:06 utc | 74

Trisha @8...
Without beating around the bush, I wonder if you could tell me where you came up with the phrase 'there is no such thing as a free market'?

Because, as far as I know, it's my own. Thank you so much...

Posted by: jimbo | Apr 17 2020 19:08 utc | 75

I wish Trump was half the SOB you think he is. He is merely a connish salesman, who figured out politics is where you make really easy tax free money. As for American incompetence, what do you expect when you send too many to college to train to become members of managerial class? We've been living in some sort of perverse game of "mother may I" for the past several decades. Not to mention there are multiple layers of managers wanting their fair share for no net value in anything other than satisfying the liberal student council mindset. Plus in the good old days you use to see the likes of engineers and pharmacists running companies, now it is money boys. Perhaps the worst thing we have going now is too many people don't having any skills to survive the coming inflationary depression. Finally the worst thing about having Donald Trump has president is he will own something that liberalism and libertarian conservatism should own in the decline of the American man and woman. OK...Trump might deserve the sh^t. Bet none of you here would ever say that about your elected officials? It must get tiring to be so superior.

Posted by: Old and Grumpy | Apr 17 2020 19:10 utc | 76

Nothing really new in the rant for those that have been paying attention, but still enjoyed it.

RE: Rosie the riveters - I read this not as advocating for war, but as an example of what used to be the manufacturing power of the us. I mean, really we could make a ship in less than two weeks, and now we struggle with paper masks. Reading comprehension is not what it should be.

---

So many posters getting so offended by this. This is why there is no hope for the us. You can't even have an intelligent conversation with about half of the population of the us. I have been trying for years, and it is rare to find someone who seems to be paying attention. This is not a partisan issue! It scares me to think how about what level of incompetence the donald would have to exhibit to lose that 46% support. How could he actually be any more incompetent? The evidence is a public spectre, boldly staring everyone in the face, and nearly half of america cant see it.

People seem to pick their ideology like they pick football teams, and come hell or high water, they will not budge from their initial choice.

---

@piggy - similar story

I purchased some seeds for my garden online yesterday and received an unsolicited email from the business owner warning me that my freedumb was under attack. I emailed back that I didn't ask for his political opinion, but please send me my seeds asap. He responded to me, saying that he wouldnt normally do this, but dog gone it this was too important for him not to speak up. I responded again as asked if he was interested in conducting business with me, and if so, STFU and send me my seeds. Needless to say, I wont be doing business with him ever again.

----

The working blocking script is such a treat.Block user script

Posted by: David F | Apr 17 2020 19:13 utc | 77

@ piggly and david f.... the problem with the msm is this kind of brainwashing goes straight back out into the community to be regurgitated by people that just swallow the info whole hog.. at least this guy put it in the form of a question, but he needs to put it in a bigger context... why all the hate towards china ramping up into covid 19? i would like it if tha ass pat lang could shine a light on that.. he was smart enough to see thru russiagate and is now an avid supporter of chinagate.. pathetic.. americans seem encouraged to swallow this crap on a regular basis.. the msm largely contributes to it being the good narrative managers they are..

Posted by: james | Apr 17 2020 19:18 utc | 78

@ david f... congrats on that!

Posted by: james | Apr 17 2020 19:20 utc | 79

sarz @56: Trump is an asshole, but he is not a total idiot.

Actually, I think Trump's support has been a kiss of death for HCQ treatment in USA.

The healthcare people around Trump are generally pro-Big Pharma. And Trump seems to like it that way. These people seem to be immune from accountability. Trump has not fired anyone despite many failures: failed to prepare; to do early testing; to take prompt action; to recommend use of masks; etc.

Trump, who has received much criticism of his "optimism" regarding HCQ treatment has the authority to order proper studies as a priority during this "national emergency" but hasn't done so (AFAIK). He also could talk more about the need to change how we address the virus (from 'virus mitigation' to 'virus suppress') but hasn't.

!!

Posted by: Jackrabbit | Apr 17 2020 19:32 utc | 80

If I have one comment on this rant is that it is too Politically correct. Trump? Been there heard that for the last three years. HYDROXYCHLOROQUINE tablets ditto- (Why is that the only word all in caps?. One must assume that a lot of the rant was to present that particular opinion).

Interesting anyway. Drawn out a lot of conflicting attitudes.

It would have been nice if more had been said about the Fed or any of the Billionaires and other profiteers queuing up for money, throwing employees out of work and then taking private jets to havens. (Did you know that one country lets in "Biz" jets without control or testing? If you arrive on a regular airline it is 14 days quarantine)

snake | Apr 17 2020 17:49 utc | 57
For your info about where it may have come from.. Quote "The Daily Mail reported that it has uncovered documents showing that Dr. Anthony Fauci’s National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Disease (NIAID) gave $3.7 million to scientists at the Wuhan Lab at the center of coronavirus leak scrutiny. According to the British paper, “the federal grant funded experiments on bats from the caves where the virus is believed to have originated.”
and
Dr. Fauci’s NIAID experiments “have given us some modest scientific knowledge and done almost nothing to improve our preparedness for pandemic, and yet risked creating an accidental pandemic.”
In October 2014, following a series of federal laboratory mishaps that narrowly missed releasing these deadly engineered viruses, President Obama ordered the halt to all federal funding for Fauci’s dangerous experiments.

The Daily Mail is possibly not one of the most reliable of sources but this is well worth investigating as well, don't you think.

Posted by: Stonebird | Apr 17 2020 19:34 utc | 81

‘They’re Death Pits’: Virus Claims at Least 6,900 Lives in U.S. Nursing Homes

This is why perception is not always reality.

The first three worldwide hotspots of the COVID-19 were, in this chronological order: 1) China 2) Italy and 3) Spain.

Those three countries had one cultural aspect in common: they had the tradition of housing the elderly in their children's homes, that is, the elder lived with their adult children and, probably, also with their grandchildren (three generations living in the same house). In China particularly, it is considered a point of honor for an adult to take care of their parents when they are too old to fend for themselves.

This raised the alaram in WHO that young people should be particularly quarantined, as they were largely asymptomatic and infected their parents and grandparents. Familial transmission was considered the greatest menace at February-March.

This observation turned out to be true: young people really were a threat to the older population. A bunch of kids on a spring break in Florida, for example, were greatly responsible for bringing the virus to the Deep South.

But there was another risk factor, which the WHO did not pay attention at the time: nursery homes, which are almost inexistent in Latin nations and in China.

Contrary to those countries, the Anglo-Saxon countries (plus Japan, albeit for low fertility rate reasons, not cultural ones) have the tradition where old people should be able to fend for themselves until death. This created a wide culture of nursery homes, where old people could exile themselves (or be exiled by their children). This made nursery homes practically ready-made banquets for the SARS-CoV-2.

The alarm had already been sounded by a nursery home in Seattle, and then in another one in Japan, where 11 deaths were reported in 24hrs. The UK has already warned that their death figures are inherently understated because they only count deaths in the NHS, not in nursery homes.

Posted by: vk | Apr 17 2020 19:40 utc | 82

In France, the open air markets have been forbidden, but this was where people could by fruits and vegetables for one third of the price they are sold in supermarkets (where you pay for the gas and plastic on top of the price). As a result, the poor can't feed themselves. Here is a picture from a food distribution in a Parisian suburb today.
http://www.leparisien.fr/seine-saint-denis-93/precarite-alimentaire-en-seine-saint-denis-pendant-le-confinement-il-y-a-urgence-les-gens-ont-faim-17-04-2020-8301372.php

Posted by: Mina | Apr 17 2020 19:45 utc | 83

For God's sake people! Can't you see who this moron Brenner is? He is the original Swamp Thang! People like Brenner are the ones who have ruined our country. To call him a fool would be an insult to fools. He is a scoundrel, a "Progressive" America hater, and an (to himself) "elitist". Just look at who he has worked with. The same Euro-weenies real Americans despise, and for good reason. I served in the intelligence community for 30 years. I know his type. Why Moon would publish his bitter screed is anybody's guess. Hate Trump if you like. God knows I never expected him to be president. But a person who would even suggest that the treasonous Democrats are an alternative is in desperate need of electro-shock treatment. File this rant in the garbage.

Posted by: Charles Burgess | Apr 17 2020 19:45 utc | 84

vk@82

"This is why perception is not always reality."

I am not following how what you wrote after this as to how it is supportive of the above. I am not sure what you really mean by the above statement.

Posted by: David F | Apr 17 2020 19:46 utc | 85

@ 82 vk.. i think you mean nursing homes, not nursery homes..

Posted by: james | Apr 17 2020 19:48 utc | 86

B. is always interesting, and always brings new information and new points of view to the fore, which is why I read MoA.

But this article is merely tedious - I've heard it all before in a thousand different permutations. It's certainly a valid point of view .. but somehow it also reminds me of this proverb: "As a dog returns to it's vomit, so a fool to his folly". Tedious, and futile.

Posted by: kral | Apr 17 2020 19:49 utc | 87

Latest figures for the aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle is that 50 percent of the sailors have tested positive. They have been at sea for 1 full month before this.
Other interesting figures from Italy: 17 000 medical practitioners. 2/3 are women. Among the 16.991 professionnals 43,2 % are nurses and midwives or gynecologists; 19 % hospital physicians, 9,9 % medico-social workers. Median age is 42.

Posted by: Mina | Apr 17 2020 19:50 utc | 88

@b

Thanks for the rant. I am continually impressed not only with your reading list but also your sensibility to telling material.

You labeled it as a rant going in. It was a fine rant, an exceptionally good rant. It was a king-hell rant, beautifully crafted. Good pick, well done, and thanks again.

My understanding from the beginning - given your very deliberate warning label in the headline - was that this rant was not to be dissected in terms of its meaning, but to be appreciated in terms of its resonance.

There will be a lot more of this in the US as society reawakens.

Posted by: Grieved | Apr 17 2020 19:54 utc | 89

Something occurred to me this afternoon.

Thinking about the Covid-19, it occurred to me that the governments of the UK, the USA, of Canada and probably many other countries that have had biological warfare labs have all said to their people “We have to do this research because the USSR, the Russians The Chinese, The North Koreans or thr Terrorists may use biological/chemical weapons against us and WE MUST BE PREPARED!!. ...

Posted by: foolisholdman | Apr 17 2020 15:11 utc | 18

minor citzen not that big a crowd, the lost regionally concerned in the US of A seemed to share your opinion. Out of that concern the Sunshine Project may or may not have been born:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sunshine_Project

Posted by: Vig | Apr 17 2020 20:01 utc | 90

> Perhaps the worst thing we have going now is too many people
>don't having any skills to survive the coming inflationary
>depression.

It's downright scary to think how few actual skills people have after a decade and a half of public "education". Few people can manage anything more complicated than changing a light bulb. They become adults and can't even cook food or use a hammer and saw. People use common devices all day every day and have absolutely zero idea how they work. Very sad.

They will have to learn and damn quick. The key to survival is, adapt or die. I dread to think how many will not be able to adapt.

Posted by: Trailer Trash | Apr 17 2020 20:06 utc | 91

Yeah fuck this article rant- here of all places.

Read/listen to Pinters Nobel speech "Art Truth and Politics" from 2005.

Fuck this clown Brenner- Consultant to United States Departments of Defense and State, Foreign Service Institute and Mellon Bank on multilateral diplomacy, peace keeping by multinational organizations, and political risk assessment.

All Amurikans (and the "West" in general) are fully complicit in the horrible crimes that have been waged vs. the rest of the world. His glowing embellishment of the U$$A building weapons of war for WW2 should wake you the fuck up to this assclown. Only moar War, Murder, lies for pleasure and profit for Amurika since then eh? Who the fuck is he to lecture on "What Have WE Learned?"

It's all been in plain sight for how long now, centuries? Suddenly Prof cant find asswipe and masks so he's NOW woke to the "new" grim realities?

Bullshit. Peak bullshit post truth.

Posted by: CitizenX | Apr 17 2020 20:07 utc | 92

Russ @ 28 says:

Does anyone know if anyone's compiling stats on what we should call real deaths from the epidemic, as opposed to deaths which really are part of the category "dying of old age"?

seems they've forgotten that old age IS a condition.

...

re your latest essay(which i enjoyed a lot)...

there's a little park near us where i walk the dog every morning. it's seven or so terraces, open to the N/NE, descending fairly steeply, of predominantly olive trees, but also some oaks and cherries and lots of flowering shrubs and a profusion of wild grasses, ubiquitous lavender, buttercups galore...

a few weeks ago I ran into a couple of cops who were taping off the swing set and the jungle gym and they told me the park was now closed to the public.

but i knew they'd never enforce the directive and have continued to walk the dog there every day since, unmolested.

as you note...the park is(the parks are) in full springtime splendour, and even more so than usual, provide some of the high points of my day.

Posted by: john | Apr 17 2020 20:13 utc | 93


LIVE now 17April 2020 Media briefing on COVID-19.
3,328 views•Streamed live 3 hours ago

Lady Gaga... good kind hearted American


https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=OcEa2eFrl-0&feature=emb_logo

Posted by: JC | Apr 17 2020 20:16 utc | 94

The best analysis I have read ever about the US´s current state of affairs in the built from decades ago, not caused by the Chinese, or anybody else, but by self-inflicted damage through widespread thuggery.

Posted by: H.Schmatz | Apr 17 2020 20:20 utc | 95

@ Posted by: CitizenX | Apr 17 2020 20:07 utc | 92

That's why the article is important: Brenner is a man of the system. If this came out from the mouth of, say, a fringe marxist militant from Palestine, nobody would take it seriously.

The content of the article is, intellectually speaking, subpar, I agree. But it has its historical value as a testimony from a contemporary (primary) source.

--//--

@ Posted by: james | Apr 17 2020 19:48 utc | 86

Yes, sorry for the typoes.

--//--

I would write about it in my last comment of the V-shaped post but omitted because I found it would be too pedantic, but now a Global Times editorial came out exactly point this out:

Employment, not GDP, key in 'wartime' economy: Global Times editorial

Note: Global Times is the Chinese government's extraofficial newspaper - more or less what the Morning Star is to the Labour Party.

Under today's plan, China needs to generate at least 1.1 million new jobs per month in order to achieve its urbanization goal and "moderate prosperous society" goal in time. It is absolutely crucial those jobs keep coming to China if the CCP wants to even dream about a China back to its full splendor.

China can live with low GDP growth rates for now (as the rest of the world is also bad in this department), but not with chronic low job creation/job losses.

The job-creation machine must be turned on now, or else the CCP will quickly lose its legitimacy with the Chinese people. This is the true menace to the communist hegemony in the country - not the propaganda spilled daily by the team of clowns in the West.

Posted by: vk | Apr 17 2020 20:21 utc | 96

Hello Professor Michael Brenner,
You are one of the very few Patriots I know of.

Posted by: Ali | Apr 17 2020 20:27 utc | 97

Trump must have one ability in spite of what Brenner thinks - he is clairvoyant. Yup. He came up with "Covfefe" not so long ago. Can't do better than that.

Cov = Corona Virus
fe = Financial Elites
fe = Facilitating Empire

Posted by: Stonebird | Apr 17 2020 20:29 utc | 98

vk 82, why should the WHO say what should be basics to protect the staff working in nursing homes and hospitals: that they should have the proper equipment and be tested and if positive, quarantined.
Germany has an aged population and lots of nursing home, strangely no such death rate. You see what I mean?
A GP once told me that 40% of the people coming to the hospital emergencies in France were there because of wrong prescriptions or non-compatible prescribed drugs. Someone here (the 2nd link) says 10-20% of the prescriptions made to the elderly are wrong and did not take into account contra-indications.
https://www.em-consulte.com/en/module/displayarticle/article/102619/impression/vue6
https://www.resuval.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/11/FMC-15.09.30-Topo-Iatrogenie.pdf

Posted by: Mina | Apr 17 2020 20:31 utc | 99

@vk 82

> Those three countries had one cultural aspect in common: they had the tradition of housing the elderly in their children's homes

interesting observation.

To be honest I'm not sure whether someone at age 70+ in a heavily affected part of the US would be safer living with their kids and grandkids or a nursing home at this time.

In the initial introduction of the virus, grandkids in school would surely be the fastest* route to a person being exposed, but after that, typical nursing homes become places where each zone of common space is shared by 10-20 "residents" and a similar number of workers who attend to them (and those subsequently go home to young families of their own).

*for some evidence of this, nyc ER data shows the younger age groups rising and peaking slightly earlier in time, but not by much

Posted by: ptb | Apr 17 2020 20:39 utc | 100

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