Linky Friday: Cancel Everything, Cease and Desist, Shut It Shut It Down Edition

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Andrew Donaldson

Born and raised in West Virginia, Andrew has since lived and traveled around the world several times over. Though frequently writing about politics out of a sense of duty and love of country, most of the time he would prefer discussions on history, culture, occasionally nerding on aviation, and his amateur foodie tendencies. He can usually be found misspelling/misusing words on Twitter @four4thefire and his writing website Yonderandhome.com

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56 Responses

  1. Avatar Kristin Devine
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    says:

    LF12 – this story irritates me greatly because it’s the same old myth that some urban people like to believe, that rural towns are inclined to be isolated from the outside world and IDK, doing Midsommar rituals or something. Like we never have any exposure to newfangled notions and our ways are foreign and alarming to “normal” people. But one of the earliest non-cluster related deaths we’ve had was of a resident of Quincy, Wa. Small towns are not shut off from coronavirus, or modern ideas, or technological advances that enable people to travel across vast distances in short periods of time.Report

  2. fillyjonk fillyjonk
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    says:

    LF8: a “nutraceuticals” or whatever it’s called company a county over from me is in hot water for making similar claims about colloidal silver.

    Hint: if something ACTUALLY works, it will be literally the top of EVERY news report, not one sponsored article on some sketchy website. Part of me is “string ’em up for making that claim,” part of me is “critical thinking, people: it matters”Report

  3. Avatar Saul Degraw
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    says:

    Courts are starting to shutdown grand juries and jury trials. I’ve had opposing counsel finally cancel depositions yesterday after holding out for a while that “of course they are going forward.”Report

    • Avatar Michael Cain
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      says:

      Isn’t one of the criteria suggested in the past for allowing an indefinite declaration of martial law (and all that goes with that, including suspension of habeas corpus) that the courts are not capable of performing their jobs? Is that where we’re headed?Report

  4. Avatar LeeEsq
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    says:

    Trump is never go to shut down the Immigration Courts or USCIS because they are vital clogs in his deportation regime. Since vast deportations and cruelty to immigrants is part of his policy plank, they will continue operating no matter how hard things get.Report

    • Avatar dragonfrog
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      says:

      He could shut down the immigration courts no problem.

      Then people swept up for being too brown in public will be kept in close quarters in concentr erm immigration detention centres for longer, where disease can spread rapidly and medical care is routinely denied.

      Perfectly on brand.Report

  5. Avatar Oscar Gordon
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    says:

    If there is a silver lining to any of this, perhaps it will be the federal bureaucracy finally figuring out there is a difference between centralized response planning and guidance, and centralized control. One of those can be effective in maintaining quality standards and avoiding duplication of effort, and the other just exposes the whole shebang to the risks of single point failures.Report

    • Avatar CJColucci
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      says:

      Considering how many federal programs involve federal funding and state or local administration, it seems likely that folks already know, or at least believe, this.Report

      • Avatar Oscar Gordon
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        says:

        And yet, the initial failures of the federal bureaucracy was due to the fact that couldn’t get out of their own way.Report

        • Avatar Stillwater
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          says:

          I disagree. The initial failures flowed directly from the Trump’s repeatedly expressed desire to “keep the numbers low”. Not testing was the goal of the policy. The CDC and FDA could have lifted those bureaucratic barriers with a single word from the President.Report

          • Avatar Oscar Gordon
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            says:

            How does that not still represent a single point of failure?Report

            • Avatar Stillwater
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              says:

              Because from the President’s pov it wasn’t a failure. It was a successfully achieved policy outcome.Report

              • Avatar Jaybird
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                says:

                I dunno. There are a lot of rules that involve people stepping on each others’ toes and that tells me that there is a deeper problem than the wrong people having absolute jurisdiction over everything.

                Here’s a crazy thread:

                The whole thread gets into it some more but there are rules about first-dollar health care coverage that got in the way of COVID-19 testing.

                There are too many moving parts.

                Having an incompetent boob in charge of everything doesn’t help matters at all, but the fix isn’t putting a competent boob in charge of everything.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater
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                says:

                Well, the pandemic response *wasn’t* being managed by the IRS. It was mismanaged by the Trump. And intentionally so. We all saw him doing it in real time.Report

              • Avatar Oscar Gordon
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                says:

                Right, so we had a single point of failure, i.e. the boob in charge.

                Now, had the states been trusted to produce and use their own tests, rather than being dependent upon waiting for permission from the feds to do so, said boob could not be a single point of failure, regardless of his personal or political desires.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater
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                says:

                Oh, I think it’s insane that states have to get Federal permission to run basic tests on sick people, but I think your crazy to think the outcome would have been substantively different without that restriction. States, just like medical providers, take their guidance from the federal government, and the (unstated) official policy was to only test people who checked all the boxes.

                But as I recall you were one of the people who said, only about a week ago!, that folks were being irrational about the scope and extent of coronavirus’ impact on the economy and public health, so … 🙂Report

              • Avatar George Turner
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                says:

                The FDA just told the CDC that they have to run double tests. Go team bureaucracy, go!

                There’s also a lot of good observations in a blog post at Blueberry Town

                In the approval of new medical tools (drugs, laboratory tests, and medical devices), our system — including direct federal and state regulators and our civil liability regime — massively prefers safety (avoiding sins of commission, if you will) to the introduction of new technology that might save lives. We don’t put a feather on the “safety” side of the scales, we weigh it down with an anvil, and are thereby far more willing to commit the sin of omission (doing nothing) than commit the sin of approving a technology that is dangerous or ineffective.

                Voters, politicians, government officials, and the press overwhelmingly favor the “safety paramount” approach of the United States. Unfortunately, the highly deliberative manner of the American approach becomes dangerous in a rapidly spreading pandemic. Much as the media and citizens wish it were otherwise, we cannot change our system, or even our bureaucratic impulses, suddenly. Even if lives depend on it.

                And Rand Simberg reports that junior high kids are calling the virus the “Boomer Remover.”Report

              • Avatar Oscar Gordon
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                says:

                Yes, I think overall “people” are over-reacting (and those very people provided excellent evidence as to why merchants should be allowed to raise prices ot prevent hoarding).. And government was under-reacting (for exactly the reasons you were suggesting, Trump is a boob who did not want a pandemic on his watch this close to an election).Report

              • Avatar Dark Matter
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                says:

                We have 3k infections and this thing increases by 10x every two weeks.

                It will be history by the election.

                Tax day we will have 300k infections.
                May 15th we’ll have 30 million.
                A month after that it will be largely died out.

                This will look like media hysteria by the election. If you know anyone who died it will be someone who was already dying.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater
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                says:

                That’s exactly what Trump is hoping will happen Dark 🙂Report

              • Avatar InMD
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                says:

                How it plays out politically is anyone’s guess but this seems either naive or like wishful thinking. I think it’s unlikely a large number of people (relatively of course) will die directly or indirectly from this but it’s exposing how bad our infrastructure is, how precarious our system leaves people and how stupidly we’ve been investing our resources the last few decades.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater
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                says:

                How it plays out politically really is anyone’s guess. One of the most ignorant, venal, morally corrupt degenerates American society is capable of producing sits on the Oval Office. And the American electorate put him there.Report

              • Avatar InMD
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                says:

                I’d like to believe maybe this is the beginning of a wake up call. But that’s also probably wishful thinking.Report

              • Avatar Chip Daniels
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                says:

                This is a hoax.”
                Failed reality show star;

                If it looks like you’re overreacting you’re probably doing the right thing

                Someone who knows his ass from a hole in the ground.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater
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                says:

                If you know anyone who died it will be someone who was already dying.

                Not get too assholey (I can’t help it though 🙂 once upon a time you apologized for the cops killing Eric Garner by saying he was a diabetic with a heart condition who was gonna die anyway.

                Seems like the “just gonna die anyway” principle applies in lots of conservative-friendly policy sets.Report

              • Avatar Dark Matter
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                says:

                Seems like the “just gonna die anyway” principle applies in lots of conservative-friendly policy sets.

                One of the core aspects to reality is people die. Not just sometimes, but all the time, and not just some people, but everyone.

                Facing that reality is key to getting good policy because it doesn’t rely on magic thinking and infinite amounts of resources.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater
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                says:

                Eg., putting a choke-hold on a guy selling loosies.Report

              • Avatar Dark Matter
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                says:

                Eg., putting a choke-hold on a guy selling loosies.

                It was the resisting arrest part which got him killed, that and being in such poor health that any force used would kill him.Report

              • Avatar Dark Matter
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                says:

                Or to put it differently, if we make something illegal, then someone somewhere will die (stupidly) because of that.Report

              • Avatar Oscar Gordon
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                says:

                If his health was that bad, then why did the police need to use force?

                For example…Report

              • Avatar Dark Matter
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                says:

                If his health was that bad, then why did the police need to use force?

                This is a silly question. He wasn’t in a hospital bed, or even a wheelchair and his health problems weren’t obvious. They also weren’t relevant because he wasn’t having a heart attack while he was resisting arrest. The police needed to use force because Garner refused to be arrested peacefully.

                Garner was refusing to let himself be handcuffed, or even touched, weighed 350-ish, had multiple arrests for assault, was facing life in prison for breaking his parole, and was refusing to let himself be arrested. I count 9 cops in the video, 5+ to take him to the ground and 4+ for crowd control. Unless cops have started moving in herds they’re there because the attempts to talk him in had failed. Since he wasn’t going to be talked in and the force needed to arrest him would also kill him, this was a no-win situation.Report

              • Avatar Oscar Gordon
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                says:

                Your mistake is assuming that the cops needed 5+ to take him down and 4+ for crowd control. Cops always bring overwhelming force to the party if they can. One should never look at the number of cops at a scene and harbor any belief that the number is actually related to the actual manpower required to do the job. Relatedly, one should never assume that the police are using appropriate force. They’ve lied just too damn often and been caught at it.

                As for Garner, it was the illegal choke hold that was the problem. People like to believe that chemical sprays or tasers never work just because they fail with a small number of arrestees, but by and large, they work great.Report

              • Avatar Dark Matter
                Ignored
                says:

                Your mistake is assuming that the cops needed 5+ to take him down and 4+ for crowd control.

                I am using those numbers for evidence of duration of the incident, not for the level of violence needed.

                As for Garner, it was the illegal choke hold that was the problem.

                In terms of societal control over police? Yes. In terms of killing him? No.

                Garner was in such poor health that the trauma of being arrested killed him. Lying him on the ground with 5 guys on top looked worse and took longer (and was presumably worse) than the choke hold. Subtract the choke hold and he’s still dead over selling loosies.Report

              • Avatar Oscar Gordon
                Ignored
                says:

                ..he’s still dead over selling loosies…

                And therin lies the problem. You mentioned up this above:

                …had multiple arrests for assault, was facing life in prison for breaking his parole…

                First off, the police can arrest you for whatever tickles their fancy at the moment. Doesn’t mean they can make those charges stick. So an arrest record without a conviction record to match is meaningless. It also looks an awful lot like harassment.

                Second, I can find no reports that he was on parole, just like I can’t find any reports of his convictions. He was out on bail, but the worst that would have happened to him is he’d have is bail revoked.

                Of course, if he felt he was being harassed by the NYPD, he might not trust them to not plant ‘loosies’ on him (because we all know big east coast police NEVER do that kind of crap).

                All that said, we still have to come to terms with the fact that the NYPD decided to arrest, and accidentally kill, a man over a minor tax violation. This is, ‘write the guy a citation and go on your merry way’ territory. He was essentially being arrested for contempt of cop, because he felt he was being harassed, and frankly, I’m to the point where I don’t think police should be able to arrest a person for whatever. I think the power of arrest should be limited to cases of clear and present danger, and that danger had better be backed up with evidence of some kind.

                The cop never should have put his hands on Garner, full stop.Report

              • Avatar Dark Matter
                Ignored
                says:

                Of course, if he felt he was being harassed by the NYPD, he might not trust them to not plant ‘loosies’ on him…

                You are the first person I’ve seen suggest he wasn’t actually selling them, including his supporters. Several of his previous arrests were for this and he was out on bail for this. If he’s being harassed, it’s very consistant.

                The year he died the NYPD arrested 581 people for this “crime”, which means they didn’t consider it to be “citation” territory at that time (although that’s way down so they do now).

                I think the power of arrest should be limited to cases of clear and present danger, and that danger had better be backed up with evidence of some kind.

                There are a ton of crimes out there which don’t fit this criteria. Everything from con men to bank fraud to whatever. I’m not saying this is clearly a bad idea, but it’s for a very different society than what we have.

                The cop never should have put his hands on Garner, full stop.

                In order to get here you need to assume Garner shouldn’t have been arrested. If that’s where we’re at then fine, he gets to be really, really bombastic and everyone moves on.

                However if we’re serious about arresting people for a “crime”, then the people being arrested don’t get to choose.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater
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                says:

                Well, when schools all across the country are shut down as well as bars and restaurants and so on, at least you’ll be able to say, when the pandemic is behind us, that people irrationally overreacted. 🙂

                Hopefully, anyway, right?Report

              • Avatar Oscar Gordon
                Ignored
                says:

                Schools and businesses being asked to close or to decline large gatherings (restaurants are switching to take-out only to keep the lights on) is still a government action.

                People hoarding TP and face masks, however, is an irrational over-reaction. The economy will contract, not collapse.Report

              • Avatar Oscar Gordon
                Ignored
                says:

                I will report one rational bit on the part of people, from a friend on FB:

                So I was in Whole Foods this morning and everyone is panic buying pasta and bread and toilet paper, etc. Lots of aisles were empty all over the store. Then I walked past the section selling homeopathic medicine and it was almost completely full and I thought to myself “maybe as a species we are smart enough to deal with this.”

                Report

    • Avatar Stillwater
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      says:

      Ehhh, I think the lesson to learn is that amoral incompetent leaders can fuck up the response in *any* type of government.Report

    • Avatar Dark Matter
      Ignored
      says:

      That is a lesson that needs to be “learned” with every administration, and then forgotten when they leave.Report

  6. Avatar Jaybird
    Ignored
    says:

    Good news. The TSA used to not allow 12 ounce bottles of hand sanitizer, given that they were larger than the limits provided by law.

    The TSA is now allowing 12 ounce bottles of hand sanitizer.Report

  7. Avatar LeeEsq
    Ignored
    says:

    Slate has this article on how Republican dominated states can cancel the Presidential election for Trump:

    https://slate.com/news-and-politics/2020/03/trump-cancel-election-day-constitution-state-electors-coronavirus.htmlReport

    • Avatar George Turner
      Ignored
      says:

      Well, the big question is how Canada will vote, because Trump is about to take advantage of Trudeau’s corona virus status and exploit the resulting critical weakness and chaos in Ottawa, along with the suspension of hockey and the simultaneous British chaos over Megyn and Harry, to invade and annex the whole of Canada (except Nunavut, because they have polar bears). Canada has never been in a weaker position vis-a-vis an airborne invasion and occupation from the US, and we shouldn’t let this opportunity slip by without taking action.

      Yeah. I could totally write for Slate.Report

  8. Avatar Jaybird
    Ignored
    says:

    And now my brain is doing the thing where I am stocked up and everything is more or less okay and where I want it.

    I just need a couple of bottles of cooking spray. Maybe another dozen eggs.Report

    • Avatar George Turner
      Ignored
      says:

      Day 0: “All supplies are stocked up for the long period of isolation.”
      Day 1 + 6 hours: “I’m in line at the grocery store to buy a Twix.”Report

      • Avatar Mike Schilling
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        says:

        How does “all supplies” not include Twix? What did you do, decide KitKats are close enough?Report

        • Avatar Jaybird
          Ignored
          says:

          I don’t want to interrupt anybody’s schtick but, seriously, if you find yourself in line and idly wondering if the “Kit Kat Mint & Dark Chocolate” candy bar is worth trying…

          Seriously: IT IS.

          Get two of them and eat one of them in the car on the way home and then meditate upon that experience and then think about eating the second.

          And then eat the second.Report

    • fillyjonk fillyjonk
      Ignored
      says:

      Fishing Jeff Bezos is getting more of my money this week. First the chocolate chips that I “need” (FSVO need) for my morning oatmeal, then today, I realized that freeze dried onions would be a really good idea if we are facing a long lockdown, and I also realized I was low on Panko bread crumbs.

      Online sellers are going to be winners in this, I think.

      It’s going to lead to a mass extinction of small businesses, though, I fear.Report

      • Avatar George Turner
        Ignored
        says:

        On the flip side, what happens when an Amazon warehouse employee gets corona virus, or when an Amazon warehouse is part of a city or state-wide shut down? The same applies to FedEx and UPS.

        One of the problems with letting Amazon take over more and more sales is that it creates a vulnerability to a single-point failure chain. It raises natural questions about the depth of their inventory (how much is “Just in Time”, etc), and how dependent they are on end-point shippers like UPS, and the number of personal interactions those UPS and FedEx drivers have during a day, as compared with the folks who unload trucks at Walmart and stock the shelves. Then there are questions about the distribution hubs, how many employees staff them, etc.

        What we’d want is a lot of short distribution chains operating in parallel, (lots of farm to market routes), whereas the Amazon model is probably a very vertical distribution chain that may lack redundancy.

        Another factor to consider is where the inventory sits, physically. One step back from the retail outlets, is the food a city in Ohio needs sitting somewhere in the city or nearby, or is it in a giant warehouse in Illinois or Tennessee? If you and your neighbors decide it’s time to loot for food, can you push a shopping cart to the outskirts of town or do you have to drive half-way across the country?

        Often we never think about such things until our system is put under a new stress and we see where it breaks.Report

    • Avatar Jaybird
      Ignored
      says:

      I managed to stay home all weekend thinking about the couple of bottles of cooking spray I needed.

      Maribou told me that she had everything she needed except for maybe some crackers. The good crackers. The Stone Ground Wheat Thin Crackers.

      I made breakfast yesterday. I noticed that after I finished off this carton of eggs, I only had one dozen more eggs. And I only had four sticks of butter left.

      So as I drove to work, I passed by the Safeway and said “heck with it” and went in and got my cooking spray and my crackers and my butter and my eggs and, you know what, I need some cheese and some bacon and they only had a pound of my pepper bacon so I bought some breakfast sausage. Oh, and some of those caffeinated fizzy drinks I like so much.

      So I drove back to the house and put everything away and *THEN* I went to work.

      And now I’m thinking “you should have gotten some jalapeno cream cheese… maybe the other Safeway has more pepper bacon”.Report

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