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Articles by run75441

“with our breathtaking landscapes and wide-open spaces, we’re a place to safely explore.”

5 days ago

South Dakota: the Land of the Free.
Celebrate what makes America great, and experience the Great Faces and Great Places of South Dakota.
This is a bit of old news from September. Both South and North Dakota have emerged as the nations hot spots for Covid infections even though sparsely populated per square mile and with smaller populations than other states. The situation has worsened since this article was originally run by CBS News and if North and South Dakota were countries they would be #1 and #2 globally for cases per million with a death rate per million in the top ten globally. Is there no shame left?
South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem’s administration announced Tuesday that it is using federal coronavirus relief funds to pay for a $5 million tourism ad

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Don’t Pay Your Rent? Go to Jail in Arkansas

5 days ago

Arkansas is the only state where landlords can file criminal charges rather than civil complaints against tenants for falling behind on rent. Gee, whata surprise! As picked up from Crooks and Liars and originally reported by ProPublica – When Falling Behind on Rent Leads to Jail Time, ProPublica.
An Arkansas prosecutor has been fired after speaking out against a 119 year old law jailing people who are behind on rent and mostly impacting female, Black, and low-income renters. Garland County deputy prosecutor Josh Drake was let go from his position on Oct. 31 by Michelle Lawrence, the prosecuting attorney.
Josh Drake told ProPublica:
I hate that law. It’s unconstitutional. It constitutes cruel and unusual punishment, echoing other Arkansas legal experts and

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State Medicaid Reported Enrollment Compared to CMS’s Reports and Covid’s Impact on Medicaid

6 days ago

I get commentary (in my emails) from xpostfactoid who writes on healthcare issues and also does a yeoman’s function not found else in reconciling ACA signups, the differences between the penalty-mandate vs no penalty-mandate, Medicaid signups by state in both expansion and non-expansion states, and lately the impact on Medicaid due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The data and commentary by xpostfactoid for this particular summary by me can be found here; State Medicaid enrollment totals in light of CMS’s (lagging) reports, November 27, 2020
Why track Medicaid numbers? As you well know, unemployment has increased since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic as a result of the shutdowns of businesses and government facilities. The resulting layoffs have caused many

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What Trump’s claim of a ‘stolen election’ means for activists today

7 days ago

George Lakey has played a part in direct action campaigns for over six decades. He has recently retired from Swarthmore College. Some of history giving him a background in social issues include being arrested in the civil rights movement and most recently in the climate justice movement. George has facilitated 1,500 workshops on five continents and led activist projects on local, national and international levels.  Waging Nonviolence 
Briefly and what I am reading in public and in the comments section here, I think it “might” be of interest to our readers also.
HT to Juan Cole at Informed Comment for featuring this commentary.
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I’m encountering a great deal of alarm among progressive activists regarding continued Republican

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Republican Renegade Emulates Warren’s Student Loan Cancellation, It is Still Problematic

19 days ago

First a story, then an introduction to Alan Collinge of Student Loan Justice Org., and finally some cold hard facts from Alan about what is happening to millions of people who have student loans.
Your Angry Bear blogger and activist went to a garden party in Michigan in support of Democrats and Senator Debbie Stabenow pre-2018 election. I had donated to the Democrats and directly in support of various county, state, and federal candidates. Since I had been involved with student loans for my three, had also talked and written about these loans, and been supportive of Alan Collinge of Student Loan Justice Org.; I had a question to ask. Senator Stabenow sits on the Senate Finance Committee and she supported the the 2005  S. 256 (Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention

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Student Loan Debt Crisis Town Hall – November 20, 2020

22 days ago

[embedded content]
Friday, November 20, 2020 3:00 PM (EST)
Student Loan Debt Crisis
Panelists include:
PAUL GRONDAHL – Director New York State Writers Institute (host)
MATT TAIBBI – Author, Rolling Stone Magazine, Reporter (moderator)
Michael J. Camoin – Videos For Change Productions, SCARED TO DEBT (filmmaker)
ALAN COLLINGE – Founder of StudentLoanJustice.Org (activist)
CATHERINE AUSTIN FITT – Investment Advisor (former Sallie Mae )
THOMAS BORGERS – Wall Street Banker, Financial Investigator
I have known Alan probably a decade or so and am familiar with his efforts and organization to change the laws governing bankruptcy for student loans. Alan has worked tirelessly on this issue which impacts tens of thousands of younger people who can not get the same

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SCOTUS ACA Update

23 days ago

This update from XPOSTFACTOID showed up in my inbox. If Roberts and Kavanaugh continue on the same path they have started out on initially, it appears the case brought about by Texas make fail. Briefly, here are some points made.
November 10 in oral argument; California v. Texas  Roberts appears equally skeptical about this argument from intent. In oral argument yesterday, Kyle Hawkins, arguing for Texas, made the case:
“I think it’s critical that, in 2017, Congress could have excised the legislative findings in 18091 [the assertion of severability], but it chose not  to do so. It could have excised —
Roberts interjected:
Well, but I mean — I — I certainly agree with you about our job in interpreting the statute, but, under the severability question, where

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2020 Voter Fraud

23 days ago

First, look at the political make up the states from where all the noise of voter fraud is coming. These states have:
Republican legislatures as determined by Gerrymandering.
A trifecta (possibly) which is a Republican Governor and legislature.
A historical turnout of voters in 2020.
A higher turnout of Democratic voters than Republican.
A reversal of votes from Repubs to Democrats historically or from 2016 to 2020 (MI, WI, and PA)
Had a normal percentage of votes for Others, Libertarian, etc. candidates in 2020 as compared to 2016.
Enough people woke up to the tyranny of trump and Republicans. It is rich that each one of the states trump is complaining about is either 100% controlled by Republicans or at least has a Repub controlled legislature. Michigan

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Processing Center Percentages are “Not” On Time Delivery Percentages

28 days ago

Steve Hutkins of Save the Post Office has been live blogging and providing updates to the 12 federal district court cases filed. In the November 6, 2020 Update Steve discusses the delivery updates being filed in court and which are being used by some news outlets to show the USPS has been delivering ballots late and not on Election Day. Steve cautions against the use of this data as actual delivery dates are different than processing dates.
November 6, 2020 Update
The Postal Service’s daily reports on service performance, election mail, and late/extra trips (submitted as part of the Joint Order from the courts in Richardson, Vote Forward, and NAACP) can be found here.
Steve Hutkins: One note about these daily reports on election mail. Some news

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USPS Court Case Updates – Election Ballot Delays

28 days ago

Steve Hutkins on-line live blogging at Save the Post Office has been updating the progress of the “Lawsuits against DeJoy, USPS & Trump with relation to mail delays and election mail. This is the sweep ordered by the court for the USPS to perform to discover and report via the  “sweep of facilities”  how many ballots (were) are being delayed due to the USPS. The twitter link in the Afternoon Update has numerous comments on the delay by the USPS delaying the Sweep. In the Morning Update (below) there are multiple various commentary by news outlets.
More to come.
November 5, 2020
Afternoon Update: Judge Sullivan presided over another hearing today. One of the questions on the table was how many ballots may have been delivered late or are still in the system

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Vaccine Progress

November 2, 2020

Guest Author at Angry Bear is Professor Joel Eissenberg. Dr. Joel Eissenberg is a professor of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology and is probably a good person to ask questions concerning pandemics and bringing new vaccines to market. Ask questions  .  .   .  I am sure he will answer the same as he has commented in the Comments section. He also reviewed my layman’s piece on Moderna’s mRNA. I am hoping he will contribute at Angry Bear on healthcare from time to time.
The Moderna trial has reached its enrollment goal of 30,000 subjects and at least 75% have already received both injections. This is not a challenge trial, but it is expected that many subjects in the vaccine and placebo arms will be infected and these will be tracked. Power calculations

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“I am Woman”

November 2, 2020

Of Australian descent singer Helen Reddy passed on September 29, 2020 largely unnoticed, at least by me an old coffee house Marine. Helen’s song “I am Woman” was the 1972 anthem and soundtrack of the women’s movement, with the opening lyrics of “I am woman, hear me roar . . . In numbers too big to ignore” turning her into a feminist icon.
In 2011, Billboard named her the number-28 adult contemporary artist of all time (number-9 woman). In 2013, the Chicago Tribune dubbed her the “Queen of ’70s Pop”.
In 2015, Helen Reddy was diagnosed as having dementia and had moved into the Motion Picture and Television Fund’s Samuel Goldwyn Center, where she was cared for by family and friends. Reddy appeared in downtown Los Angeles at the January 21, 2017 Women’s March.

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Voting by Mail and the Next Election Meltdown – A Prophecy

November 1, 2020

[unable to retrieve full-text content]Steve Hutkins at Save The Post Office This post was written in 2016 and slightly updated on Oct. 31, 2018, exactly two years ago today. The update started like this: According to this AP report today, alarms are already being raised about the rejection of many mail-in ballots in next week’s elections. Several of these […]

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Notes on South and North Carolina Politics and Zeta

November 1, 2020

Been chatting (email) with a friend based in North Carolina. I thought I would share the comments at AB.
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I had to spend a good deal of time cleaning up after the remnants of Zeta. We got 5 inches of rain and 45 mph winds. I managed to get leaves out of the ditches and culverts before the storm so what came down didn’t do too much damage to the road. I had it cleaned up the next day. Our local power company is Western Carolina University – an odd leftover from 50 years ago. My neighbor heads up the maintenance and line crews so if there are trees down along our creek I’ll bring my tractor down and help them out. It made for a couple of long days but I got some good firewood out of the deal. It also took my mind off the election.
It looks like NC

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“What we needed was real leadership to address this issue at hand”

November 1, 2020

“What you just Heard from Senator Graham is what we get
The discussion of what is going on in Washington D.C.
I do not care what is going on in Washington D.C.
Because right now, Rome is on fire right here in South Carolina”
Part of Jamie Harrison’s opening statement (above)
– Jamie gets the stats right and focuses on the people
– Lindsey focuses on liberal and conservative ideologies.
[embedded content]If you have not heard Jamie Harrison speak before, here is an opportunity. He make Lindsey nervous. The debate starts at the 15 minute mark.

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Stop Girdling the Post Office

November 1, 2020

Mark Jamison, Retired NC Postmaster at Save the Post Office, October 29, 2020
In forestry the practice of tree girdling is well known. Although there are some circumstances where this can be a useful practice, in most cases the technique is used for nefarious ends. Girdling involves removing the bark and layers below the bark, usually around the trunk of the tree. The cut, when it includes the entire circumference of the tree, makes it impossible for the tree to heal itself and everything above the cut will eventually die. In forests where logging is limited to dying or diseased trees, loggers will girdle healthy trees to kill them and make them available for harvest.
For at least the last fifty years, the right wing has been girdling the post office and

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DeJoy’s 57 Varieties of Cost Cutting: What’s in the new OIG report—and what’s not?

October 31, 2020

Steve Hutkins at Save The Post Office
In response to several inquiries from members of Congress, the Office of Inspector General has issued a report on “Operational Changes to Mail Delivery.” The report discusses the Postal Service’s plan to eliminate 64 million work hours — the equivalent of 33,000 jobs — by implementing 57 cost-cutting initiatives. As discussed in this previous post, the plan represents one of the largest downsizing efforts in the 50-year history of the Postal Service.
These 57 “Do It Now FY Strategies” include restrictions on overtime, late and extra trips from processing centers, and all the other cost-cutting measures that have caused the delivery delays we’ve seen since July. They also include numerous other changes to postal

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Do we really want our rights to be determined by the understandings of centuries ago?

October 30, 2020

The Philosophy That Makes Amy Coney Barrett So Dangerous, NYT, Erwin Chemerinsky, October 2020, Opinion Piece
If I did not know this man personally, I would have never looked to him for help and also advice from time to time.  It was only through a friend I wrote with at the old Slate site, I had the chance to meet him. Professor Chemerinsky discusses the dangers of applying an originalism interpretation of the US Constitution. There is not much I can add to this and I would call this article a copy and paste at Angry Bear. It is a good read for nonlegal based readers.
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In 1987, Robert Bork was denied confirmation to the Supreme Court because his originalist beliefs were deemed a serious threat to constitutional rights. Originalism

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Just Some More Gibberish on Covid

October 28, 2020

Or one would think so, given people resist wearing a mask, social distancing and they want to party like its 1999. Song written in 1982  .  .  .   “Don’t worry, I won’t hurt you. I only want you to have some fun,” Covid.
[embedded content]Melissa Jeltsen, Huffpost: “The U.S. has entered an ominous new surge of the coronavirus pandemic, with more cases reported on Friday (10/23/20) than any other day since the crisis began in March. And yet, in many areas of the country where infections are spiking, wearing a mask in public is still completely optional.”
Speaking of which, optional mask wearing and distancing? Even if there was no Covid, I would not want someone close to me. Here in Michigan, we have a special type of intellect where people quote numbers

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The Reason Amy Coney Barrett May Have Been Chosen

October 25, 2020

Lauren Martinchek at Medium magazine has a brief article suggesting there is another reason why trump chose Amy to be the next SCOTUS Justice and why Republicans are in such a hurry to nominate her. It is an alarmist viewpoint; however, it does have a foundation to it and has merit for her to claim it. This may be old news to some readers.
Pulling from the Washington Post, Beth Reinhard and Tom Hamburger lay the foundation from which Lauren lays out some of the detail.
“Amy Coney Barrett was just three years out of law school, a 28-year-old associate at a boutique Washington law firm, when she was dispatched to Florida to help George W. Bush’s legal team rescue thousands of Republican absentee ballots.
At issue were thousands of absentee ballot request

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Some things going on at AB

October 24, 2020

Briefly, fellow writers. Dan is changing a few things for the better. In the comments section, you should be able to bold or italicize things eventually and do other functions which are normal when writing. We are going to track other blogs and news similar to what you may have seen elsewhere and have a special column for them. Freshen the place up so we can go forward another 10 years. Make it IPhone friendly (JF asked about).
I have also noticed some comments are ending up in “trash.” if you did not trash them, let me know and I will retrieve them and approve them. I am not doing it and for some reason the system is doing such.

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The Post Office in a Decent Society

October 21, 2020

Mark Jamison’s commentary on USPO matters have been featured at Angry Bear Blog a number of times. A retired postmaster, Mark Jamison serves as an advisor, resident guru, and a regular contributor to Save the Post Office. Mark’s previous posts concerning the USPO can be found here at “Save The Post Office” or by doing the search function at Angry Bear. Mark can also be contacted on USPO matters [email protected]
In looking at the results of the recent lawsuits against the Postal Service — eight of which have led to rulings banning changes in postal operations until after the election — it is tempting to make a bad sports analogy.  After all, going 0 for 8 in the courts lends itself to comparisons with the futility we often associate with the worst

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Eating More Chocolate: A Cure for Pandemic Fatigue?

October 20, 2020

Just doing the local rounds and reading. One of three writers over at Naked Capitalism had this up on a small way escape the boredom of Covid.  It is more than just a promotion about chocolate and it does make you smile. When I was working in Riethim-Weilheim area of Germany near Tuttligen, on the weekend I would drive into Switzerland to a  Chocolatier in Schaffhausen and buy a nice box of chocolates to share with my German associates and then wander over to  Konstanz to explore along the lake.  Good stuff and it made friends. A little bit about the writer: Jerri-Lynn Scofield has worked as a securities lawyer and a derivatives trader. She is currently writing a book about textile artisans.
I just finished compiling today’s Links and they are particularly

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A New Agenda for Postal Reform

October 19, 2020

Steve Hutkins of Save The Post Office critiques the cost-saving measures put into play to-date by PMG Louis DeJoy, the bypassing of the Postal Regulatory Commission which is supposed to review such plans, and the resulting unprecedented mail delays across the country. In conjunction with others, Steve proposes a plan to meet the Covid crisis head-on and lay a foundation for a future Postal Service.
In late June of this year, a few days after the new Postmaster General took office and in the middle of a pandemic, the Postal Service initiated a plan to eliminate 64 million work hours, the equivalent of 33,000 jobs. It was one of the largest cost-cutting plans (perhaps the largest) in the history of the Postal Service, and leadership wanted to get it done by

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Biden’s Gettysburg Speech, October 6, 2020

October 16, 2020

[embedded content]Infidel753 introduces us to “Biden’s 22 minutes of speech worth listening to and watching in entirety.” It is interesting on multiple levels. Infidel753 writes for a blog of his own name Infidel753 and also posts commentary from other blogs and Angry Bear on Crooks and Liars. This speech was given on October 6, 2020. I had not heard much about it till Infidel posted it after he read it on Annie Asks You and I saw it on Infidel’s site.
“Most obviously, what a relief to see a leader who can speak coherently in complete sentences with an adult vocabulary, and who focuses on ideas instead of toddler-like insults and bragging. Our country needs to get back to the kind of leadership for which other democracies can feel respect instead of

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Day 2: Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (RI) Asks Questions of Justice Amy Barrett

October 14, 2020

Yes, yes, I know Judge Amy Barrett has not been confirmed to be a Justice and serve on SCOTUS yet. I believe it to be a slam dunk for her to be confirmed by Senators without morals or a conscience.
[embedded content]There are times I believe we should have non attorneys in the Senate and then this occurs where an attorney is friendly or at least on target with the issues. Senator Whitehouse expands on what he described yesterday using Abood as an example, how Alito signaled the gang of five conservative Justices were ready to overturn it, and reveals the methodology to over turn it.
Abood v. Detroit Board of Education is dead as a Supreme Court precedent. The 1977 decision had allowed public-employee unions to compel workers to pay the unions “agency fees”

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Perhaps, Recall the Thalidomide Disaster, etc. while Searching for a Covid Vaccine

October 13, 2020

There is a big push by trump and Republicans to bring a Covid to market quickly.
Remember the Thalidomide Disaster, The Morning Call, May 12, 2020
Thalidomide
In the rush to find a vaccine or treatment for the coronavirus, let’s not forget the bitter lesson learned in the 1950s and ’60s when thalidomide was prescribed to pregnant women for morning sickness. Thalidomide was approved for European use in 1957 although it was never tested on pregnant women.
Our Food and Drug Administration never approved the drug, but 20,000 pills had been given to doctors for distribution to patients in clinical trials. After reports surfaced about babies born with birth defects to mothers who had taken the drug, thalidomide was taken off the market.
Worldwide, an estimated

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Book Review, “America’s Bitter Pill“

October 12, 2020

Kip Sullivan and I have had a running dialogue over the last year or so. Kip has been writing for such sites as The Health Care Blog, other blogs and newspaper. I find his knowledge insightful as we discuss what we know and where we are going with healthcare. Today Kip is working on implementing “Health Care For All – Minnesota” and is also developing a 3-year research and public education campaign. If you have questions this is the person to ask them.
This review was written in 2015 and is still relevant in 2020 in terms of how we started to arrive at where we are in healthcare. I have read some of the same complaints he outlines in his dialogue.
“America’s Bitter Pill: CBO was Right. The White House and Steven Brill Were Wrong.”
Steven Brill’s latest

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USPS Update on Court Cases

October 11, 2020

Steve Hutkins at Save the Post Office
Another federal court has ruled against the Postal Service. The United States Postal Service is now 0 for 6.
In the case of Richardson v Trump, Judge Emmet Sullivan has ordered a preliminary injunction putting limits on postal operations in the run-up to the election. (Sullivan had also issued a preliminary injunction in Vote Forward v DeJoy.) 
In his Opinion Sullivan writes,
“The Court shall grant Plaintiffs’ request to ‘restore overtime pay’ and to ‘make all late mail deliveries instead of letting mail be delayed or go undelivered.’”
Sullivan stopped short of ordering the Postal Service to returning operations to the status quo as of January 1, which would have meant restoring the 700 sorting machines that have

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“Dying In A Leaderless Vacuum”, NEJM

October 9, 2020

“The New England Journal of Medicine Breaks two centuries of precedent to take an electoral stand,” Medpage Today, Shannon Firth, October 9, 2020
Angry Bear Readers: I am stealing the NEJM’s title as it states all of the issues we are faced with today with the Covid Pandemic. “Dying in a Leaderless Vacuum.” The NEJM is not known for being political. Yet today, the NEJM is taking a stand on what is happening in the United States for the first time in 200 years, with the regard to the lack of leadership by our government during the Covid19 pandemic. I have not included the whole editorial and have only C&Ped two paragraphs which I believe captures much of the argument being made by the NEJM. The entire article is not a long read and I hope and expect you

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