Dec. 17: COVID Data Dashboard

December 17, 2020

314,539 Deaths-to-Date

3,448 Daily New Deaths  (peak 3,156 Dec. 9)
> 7-day average 2,561    (peak 2,561 Dec. 16)

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Confirmed Cases

243,245 New Cases
> 7-day average  212,505

Currently Hospitalized

113,069 Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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In dissent, Wisconsin’s Supreme Court’s Chief Justice says…

December 16, 2020

“There are numerous (election) problems that will be repeated again and again, until this court has the courage to correct them.”
===============

Save for the headline “Wisconsin Supreme Court puts final nail in Trump’s election coffin” … this story isn’t getting much coverage.

That’s too bad because, in the details, the ruling and its dissents hit more nails than the headlined one on the head.

Here’s the essence of the case, the ruling and the dissents ….

Read the rest of this entry »

Dec. 16: COVID Data Dashboard

December 16, 2020

311,021 Deaths-to-Date

2,924 Daily New Deaths  (peak 3,156 Dec. 9)
> 7-day average 2,523    (peak 2,523 Dec. 15)

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Confirmed Cases

196,694 New Cases
> 7-day average  209,099

Currently Hospitalized

112,216 Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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It’s official: Fauci whiffs, again!

December 15, 2020

How many times can a media-proclaimed “leading expert” miss the mark and still hold the title?

By my count:

  • He originally said that the COVID risk to Americans was miniscule
  • He opposed the Chinese travel ban as unnecessary or, at least, premature
  • He illogically told people not to wear masks since they won’t help and would deplete PPE stockpiles.  Only the latter was true.
  • He grossly misled Congress regarding the COVID death rate (by an order of magnitude!), conflating the conflation of the Infection Fatality Rate (IFR) and Case Fatality Rate (CFR).  The CFR (of which Fauci was likely referring) is about 10 times the IFR. Source
  • He championed the “15 days to stop the spread” … using the widely discredited projection of  2 million “do nothing” deaths to seal the deal with Trump. (Note: the 15 day program is approaching day #300).
  • He lauded Cuomo’s “Gold Standard” response to COVID … despite highest death count (over 35,000), 2nd highest fatality rate (NJ is #1), wasted resources (think: a hospital ship, field hospitals and ventilators), an economic disaster in NYC and, oh yeah, a crushing 2nd wave of COVIID.
  • He admitted to boosting his estimate of the herd immunity threshold “partly based on new science and partly on his gut feeling that the country is finally ready to hear what he really thinks.” Source
  • He led the charge to close the schools (but now says to close the bars, but open the schools)
  • And, back in March, he proclaimed that “it will take a year or more to develop a Coronavirus vaccine.”

Flashback to March 3, 2020:

Well, Dr. Leading Expert, the first shots of vaccine were administered yesterday… thanks to Trump’s Operation Warp Speed.

Perhaps, Fauci will rush to CNN today to say “Trump was right, I was wrong.”

I won’t hold my breath …

=============

P.S. Biden announced Fauci as his chief medical adviser.  Say, what?

That’s not following “the science”, it’s following the “political science”.

Dec. 15: COVID Data Dashboard

December 15, 2020

308,010 Deaths-to-Date

1,525 Daily New Deaths  (peak 3,156 Dec. 9)
> 7-day average 2,510    (peak 2,510 Dec. 14)

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Confirmed Cases

190,773 New Cases
> 7-day average  209,854

Currently Hospitalized

110,549 Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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So, who is social distancing and who isn’t?

December 14, 2020

The  “Covid States Project”  recently published their most recent survey of  how Americans  are (or are not) complying with the CDC’s COVID mitigation guidance (e.g. wash hands, disinfect surfaces, wear masks, socially distance)

In a prior post, we noted that  mask wearing compliance has steadily increased  to over 75%  (the light yellow diagonal  line running from the lower left to upper right corners).

But, “socially distancing” behaviors are declining … both the percentage of people avoiding contact with people outside their home (red line) and those avoiding crowded or public places (green line).

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More specifically, the survey indicates:

  • Education: Mask-wearing and social distancing is statistically unrelated to level of education
  • Gender: Women wear masks and socially distance more than men
  • Race: Proportionately fewer Whites wear masks than other racial groups; Whites and Hispanics tend to socially distance less than Blacks and Asians.

But, the differences among education levels, gender and race are relatively modest … probably within the margin of error.

There are a couple of identity characteristics that do show significant differences…

Read the rest of this entry »

Dec. 14: COVID Data Dashboard

December 14, 2020

306,459 Deaths-to-Date

1,879 Daily New Deaths  (peak 3,156 Dec. 9)
> 7-day average 2,508    (peak 2,508 Dec. 13)

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Confirmed Cases

187,901 New Cases
> 7-day average  210,913

Currently Hospitalized

109,331 Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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SCOTUS cowers: “Too hot to handle”

December 13, 2020

Rather than ruling on the merits of the case, Justices run for the hills.
=============

OK, the WSJ had it right … and we had it wrong.

Recognizing that they would be caught between a rock and a hard place, the SCOTUS channeled Sgt. Shultz claim (“I hear nothing, I see nothing”) to stay out of the election dispute.

For the record, here’s the first part of the official SCOTUS statement:

ORDER IN PENDING CASE (155, ORIG.) TEXAS V. PENNSYLVANIA, ET AL.

The State of Texas’s motion for leave to file a bill of complaint is denied for lack of standing under Article III of the Constitution.

Texas has not demonstrated a judicially cognizable interest in the manner in which another State conducts its elections.

All other pending motions are dismissed as moot.

The key point: This isn’t a ruling on the merits of the case, i.e. whether there was election fraud and rigging … or not.

The Court just decided to rule on procedural technicalities and leave the merits of the case open for all of us to decide.

Let’s parse the courts statement….

Read the rest of this entry »

Dec. 13: COVID Data Dashboard

December 13, 2020

305082 Deaths-to-Date

2,309 Daily New Deaths  (peak 3,156 Dec. 9)
> 7-day average 2,465    (peak 2,465 Dec. 12)

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Confirmed Cases

220,298 New Cases
> 7-day average  208,908

Currently Hospitalized

108,487 Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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WSJ: “A political earthquake if SCOTUS takes the Texas law suit”

December 11, 2020

To be fair & balanced …

Yesterday, we argued that SCOTUS is caught between a rock and a hard place… and would create a legal nightmare if they didn’t rule the actions of the 4 “defendant states” to be unconstitutional.

Today, the WSJ editorializes that the SCOTUS shouldn’t even take the Texas law suit.

Here’s an excerpt from the editorial:

Ken Paxton, the Texas Attorney General, launched an implausible appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn state presidential election results.

It would be a legal and political earthquake if the Court took the case.

The first issue is whether Texas has the legal standing to sue.

To have standing, a plaintiff must point to a specific injury and there must be some possibility of a remedy.

In this case, what is the injury?

Mr. Paxton argues that the four states have harmed his state and violated the Electors Clause of the Constitution by holding elections with major procedural irregularities. He’s saying Texas can be harmed by the way another state manages its elections.

But if Texas can sue on these grounds, then some unhappy state will sue another state after every close election whose outcome it doesn’t like.

Then there’s the problem of remedy. Mr. Paxton wants the Court to intervene and order the four state legislatures to deny Mr. Biden their electoral votes. He claims, with some justification, that the Constitution gives state legislatures the power to choose electors.

But that is what they have done already in certifying their votes.

In other words, Mr. Paxton’s claim is essentially moot as the states have certified their results and chosen electors.

There’s no doubt that Democrats used the pandemic as an excuse to expand mail-in voting that created more opportunities for fraud.

But the GOP should have fought those changes more competently before the election.

To take Mr. Paxton’s case the Court would have to set a new standard for standing to sue in election cases and essentially overturn the election results in four states and disenfranchise millions of voters.

The Justices would be opening an historic constitutional thicket if they take it.

What do you think?

Dec. 11: COVOD Data Dashboard

December 11, 2020

296,612 Deaths-to-Date

2,874 Daily New Deaths  (peak 3,156 Dec. 9)
> 7-day average 2,385    (peak 2,395 Dec. 9)

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Confirmed Cases

200,924 New Cases
> 7-day average  205,488

Currently Hospitalized

107,248 Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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SCOTUS is caught between a rock and a hard place…

December 10, 2020

Having put the Texas case on its docket, SCOTUS faces very hard decisions
==============

First, some essential background…

The complaint goes directly at the the Court’s constitutional fortitude and sovereignty.

Either the Constitution matters and must be followed, even when some officials consider it inconvenient or out of date, or it is simply a piece of parchment on display at the National Archives.

The fundamental decision that the Court must make is whether or not the “defendant states” (PA, GA, MI, WI) — specifically, their election officials and state courts — acted unconstitutionally when they — not their respective legislatures — changed election laws in the run-up to the 2020 election.

This case presents a question of law:

Did Defendant States violate the Electors Clause by taking— or allowing — non-legislative actions to change the election rules that would govern the appointment of presidential electors?

The crux of the argument:

Using the COVID-19 pandemic as a justification, government officials in the defendant states … usurped their legislatures’ authority and unconstitutionally revised their state’s election statutes.

The defendant states accomplished these statutory revisions through executive fiat or friendly lawsuits, thereby weakening ballot integrity.

These same government officials flooded the defendant states with millions of ballots to be sent through the mails, or placed in drop boxes, with little or no chain of custody and, at the same time, weakened the strongest security measures protecting the integrity of the vote signature verification and witness requirements.

The complaint goes into detail (with numerous precedent cases cited) to establish the venue (why SCOTUS must decide), their standing (in effect, their states constitutional votes were nullified) and the constitutional rationale.

OK so let’s cut to the chase…

Read the rest of this entry »

Dec. 10: COVID Data Dashboard

December 10, 2020

296,612 Deaths-to-Date

3,156 Daily New Deaths  (peak 3,156 Dec. 9)
> 7-day average 2,395    (peak 2,395 Dec. 9)

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Confirmed Cases

219,403 New Cases
> 7-day average  207,908

Currently Hospitalized

106,688 Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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Mask wearing up, cases up, deaths up … huh?

December 9, 2020

A team of northeastern academic researchers, doing a  “Covid States Project”,  recently published their most recent survey of  how “the human behaviors that have been shown to inhibit the spread of COVID-19 have evolved across the US since April, 2020.”

Said differently, they were evaluating whether or not people were complying with the CDC’s COVID mitigation guidance.

The researchers found that, since Spring, mask wearing compliance has increased from slightly over 50% to over 75%  (the light yellow diagonal  line running from the lower left to upper right corners).

Hmmm.

Mask wearing has increased to a relatively high level, yet the number of confirmed cases are spiking to record highs.

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Seems counter-intuitive, doesn’t it?

Read the rest of this entry »

Dec. 9: COVID Data Dashboard

December 9, 2020

293,358 Deaths-to-Date

2,857 Daily New Deaths  (peak 2,857 Dec. 8)
> 7-day average 2,340    (peak 2,340 Dec. 8)

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Confirmed Cases

201,979 New Cases
> 7-day average  204,960

Currently Hospitalized

104,600 Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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Georgia counting controversy is now getting surreal…

December 8, 2020

Unless your TV only gets CNN, you’ve probably seen the election night CCTV video from Fulton County Georgia’s the central counting room at Sate Farm Arena.

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The video shows (or as the Washington Post says “appears to show”) media & observers leaving the room en masse around 10:30 … then ballot-laden suitcases being rolled out from under some tables by the handful of remaining counters who spend the next couple of hours scanning the suitcases’ contents.

The video was presented to GOP-run State Senate Committee by Trump operatives and looped on right-leaning stations and sites.

Immediately, there was pushback by liberal media and fact-checkers … and by Georgia State election officials.

OK, with that as background, let’s unpack the story…

Read the rest of this entry »

Dec. 8: COVID Data Dashboard

December 8, 2020

290,439 Deaths-to-Date

1,503 Daily New Deaths  (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 2,301    (peak 2,301 Dec. 7)

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Confirmed Cases

198,190 New Cases
> 7-day average  202,130

Currently Hospitalized

102,148  Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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Some serious efforts at ID verification…

December 7, 2020

May offer some ideas for upping election integrity.
=============

Regular readers know that I’ve been attentive to to issues surrounding election integrity … especially voter registration lists and ballot verification.

With those issues top-of-mind, I had a couple of relevant experiences in the past couple of days.

First, I got a carpet-bomb email from a friend who was updating his Christmas card list.

He was reaching out to make sure that everybody on the list was still alive and that he had current addresses.

Obviously, he didn’t want to waste postage sending cards to former addresses … and, he didn’t want to inadvertently send cards to anybody who has successfully concluded their earthly tours of duty.

I suggested that he might want to start helping election boards clean up their registration lists.

He politely, but emphatically declined.

So, I’m left with his idea: Why not mail out verification letters to everybody on the voter registration list … to their address of record … mark them “do not forward … include a postage-free return postcard … require them to send the signed postcard back … if they don’t send it back (signed)  flag them on the voter rolls.

Then, if or when they try to vote (or request an absentee ballot), make them re-register to vote — with some legit forms of ID, of course.

================

The 2nd experience was a real life case of identity verification done right.

Read the rest of this entry »

Dec. 7: COVID Data Dashboard

December 7, 2020

288,906 Deaths-to-Date

1,076 Daily New Deaths  (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 2,262    (peak 2.262 Dec. 6)

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Confirmed Cases

173,861New Cases
> 7-day average  196,899

Currently Hospitalized

101,487  Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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Dec. 6: COVID Data Dashboard

December 6, 2020

287,825 Deaths-to-Date

2,251 Daily New Deaths  (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 2,224    (peak 2.229 April 23)

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Confirmed Cases

208,790  New Cases
> 7-day average  191,412

Currently Hospitalized

101,190  Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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Dec. 5: COVID Data Dashboard

December 5, 2020

285,550 Deaths-to-Date

2,718 Daily New Deaths  (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 2,073    (peak 2.229 April 23)

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Confirmed Cases

235,272  New Cases
> 7-day average  182,067

Currently Hospitalized

101,276  Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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Carter-Baker Commission: “Building Confidence in U.S. Elections”

December 4, 2020

Perhaps President Trump should convene still another Commission on Election Integrity… or better yet, nudge Barr to name another Special Counsel to investigate election “irregularities”.
=============

Anybody remember Bush versus Gore?

There was understandable concern when Florida vote-counting labored on for more than a month after the election and Bush ended up winning by a couple of hundred votes when the SCOTUS ruled “no mas”.

Eventually, in 2005, a Commission on Election Reform was convened, led by former President Jimmy Carter and former GOP Secretary of State James Baker.

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The Carter-Baker Commission Report  covered many of the election issues that have arisen in the 2020 election…

Read the rest of this entry »

Dec. 4: C-19 Data Dashboard

December 4, 2020

282,827 Deaths-to-Date

2,914 Daily New Deaths  (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 1,890    (peak 2.229 April 23)

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Confirmed Cases

217,861  New Cases
> 7-day average  176,311

Currently Hospitalized

100,667  Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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If there was widespread fraud, how could the GOP flip so many congressional seats?

December 3, 2020

That’s a question that liberal pundits (and some of my left-leaning friends) are posing to “prove” that there was no widespread fraud … and there’s a simple answer
===============

The first time I was asked the question, I was stumped, so I did some quick fact-finding.

The answer should have been obvious (to me) from the get-go:

The seats that the GOP flipped weren’t in the notorious metro cheat-spots that tanked Trump, i.e. Philly, Detroit, Milwaukee, Vegas.

Specifically, RCP is currently reporting that the GOP flipped 11 seats; 2 each in FL & CA; 1 each in UT, SC, IA, OK, NM, MI, NY.

With the exception of Michigan, there are no allegations of game-changing cheating in any of the flipped-states … most were red states undoing 2018 blue-flips or landslide Biden states that didn’t need cheating to win (NY, CA).

In Michigan, the flipped congressional district (CD 3) covers Grand Rapids and Battle Creek … far away from the reach of the Detroit machine.

Note: GOP Senate Candidate — John James — lost narrowly.  He was leading until the Detroit votes were counted.

According to RCP, the Dems only flipped 1 congressional seat –  Georgia’s 7th CD — just north of Atlanta in Gwinnett County.

Need I say more on that one?

============

Bottom line: GOP flips are hardly evidence that the election was fraud-free in the suspected cheat-spots.

Dec. 3: C-19 Data Dashboard

December 3, 2020

279,845 Deaths-to-Date

2,810 Daily New Deaths  (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 1,661    (peak 2.229 April 23)

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Confirmed Cases

198767  New Cases
> 7-day average  165,431

Currently Hospitalized

100,226  Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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Uh-oh: Bookies think the election was fixed..

December 2, 2020

And, since these bad boys take things like that very personally, they may provide the strongest impetus for election reforms.
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Yesterday, we reported a Rasmussen survey finding that almost half of American voters think that that Democrats stole votes or destroyed pro-Trump ballots in several states to ensure that Biden would win.

Among those “believers” are some of America’s biggest bookies.

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Speaking on behalf of them is a Las Vegas legend named Wayne Allyn Root.

I’m Wayne Allyn Root.

I was a Las Vegas odds maker and sports gaming expert for four decades — long before I became known as a nationally syndicated talk show host.

I understand odds and gambling.

And I can tell you something is very wrong with this presidential election.

It reminds me of a fixed football game.

As an odds maker, when a football game is fixed, even if you can’t prove it, you know.

Gamblers feel that same way about this presidential election.

Let me give you the details of this election- from a gambler’s perspective.

Read the rest of this entry »

Dec. 2: C-19 Data Dashboard

December 2, 2020

276,976 Deaths-to-Date

2,611 Daily New Deaths  (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 1,584    (peak 2.229 April 23)

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Confirmed Cases

182,172  New Cases
> 7-day average  162,879

Currently Hospitalized

98,691  Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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Barr upgrades Durham to Special Counsel status…

December 1, 2020

Yesterday morning, we asked: Are Comey, Brennan and friends now off-the-hook?

And, we offered President Trump some specific advice: Coax Barr to name a Special Prosecutor.

Well, I don’t want to claim all of the motivating credit, but here’s what just got announced:

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Boom!

According to the WSJ:

Attorney General William Barr has named Connecticut U.S. Attorney John Durham a special counsel, giving him extra protection to continue during the Biden administration his investigation of the origins of the FBI’s 2016 Russia probe.

Mr. Barr appointed Mr. Durham special counsel under the same regulation used to name Robert Mueller to take over the Russia investigation.

I guess Comey & Brennan aren’t off the hook after all.

Ball’s in your court, Joe.

Survey: Was the election free of widespread fraud?

December 1, 2020

Rasmussen surveyed a variant of that question:

How likely is it that Democrats stole votes or destroyed pro-Trump ballots in several states to ensure that Biden would win?

The answer may surprise some folks…

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About half of all respondents (47%) thought it was somewhat or very likely that Dems stole votes or destroyed pro-Trump ballots.

Predictably, 3 of 4 Republicans thought it was true.

The surprise: nearly 1 in 3 Democrats thought it was somewhat or very likely that Dems stole votes or destroyed pro-Trump ballots.

Gee, even a statistically significant number of Dems think that there was widespread fraud.

Rasmussen didn’t ask the question, but I bet practically all of them think the ends justify the means.

So much for election integrity.

Dec. 1: C-19 Data Dashboard

December 1, 2020

274,332 Deaths-to-Date

1,238 Daily New Deaths  (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 1,521   (peak 2.229 April 23)

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Confirmed Cases

161,568  New Cases
> 7-day average  161,862

Currently Hospitalized

96,039  Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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Are Comey, Brennan and friends now off-the-hook?

November 30, 2020

Trump should coax Barr to name a Special Prosecutor.
============

I’m a bit surprised that I haven’t heard any punditry on this issue.

To refresh memories: In April 2019, AG Barr confirmed that he had initiated a review into “both the genesis and the conduct of intelligence activities directed at the Trump campaign during 2016” — activities commonly known as “Crossfire Hurricane.”

And, Barr appointed U.S. Attorney for Connecticut John Durham, a widely respected prosecutor, to investigate (with full subpoena powers) and, if appropriate, issue grand jury indictments.

The “usual band of suspects” were reported to be on hot seats, including Comey, Brennan, Strzok, et. al.

But, after 18 months of sleuthing, all that Durham has to show for his work is squeezing a felony guilty plea to  making a false statement in an official proceeding (i.e. lying in a FISA court submission).

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Continually we’ve heard that the big shoe was about to drop.

But, COVID came and the process dragged on and on.

Then came the election and, of course, indictments couldn’t be dropped right before an election, right?

So what now?

Read the rest of this entry »

Nov. 30: C-19 Data Dashboard

November 30, 2020

273,072 Deaths-to-Date

819 Daily New Deaths    (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 1,483   (peak 2.229 April 23)

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Confirmed Cases

135,455  New Cases
> 7-day average  163,367

Currently Hospitalized

93,258  Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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Happy Thanksgiving !

November 26, 2020

It has been a tough year.

So, it’s a good time to focus on the many reasons we still have to be thankful.

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* * * * * 
Follow on Twitter @KenHoma

>> Latest Posts

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Anger in America …

November 25, 2020

Time to chill out, folks
=============

Pew ran  large sample surveys in June and and November (after the election).

They asked participants about their feelings: hopefulness, fear, pride and anger.

The latter caught my eye.

Pew asked: In thinking about the state of the country, do you feel angry?

In June, 80% of Biden supporters — 4 out of every 5 — said that they felt ANGRY.

Let that sink in for a moment. ANGRY.

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Since the election, their anger has subsided by about 1/3 … down 24 percentage points to 56%.

That level is about equal to the anger level of Trump supporters before and after the election.

=============

The scorching high temperature among Biden supporters doesn’t surprise me.

But, I am surprised that even more of their anger wasn’t dissipated by their apparently successful effort to oust the hated orange-haired man.

And, I was initially surprised by the majority level of anger among Trump supporters … before and after the election.

My take: They’re anger isn’t directly election-related.

Rather, their anger is probably a reflection of the state-of-the-nation: diminished law & order (i.e. unprosecuted fires & looting) and constrained freedom (e.g. lockdowns and mandates)

=============

The really bad news: The majority of both Biden and Trump supporters are still ANGRY.

Maybe Thanksgiving will a good opportunity for everybody to just chill out…

Let’s give it a try…

Nov. 25: C-19 Data Dashboard

November 25, 2020

265,891 Deaths-to-Date

2,187 Daily New Deaths  (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 1,662    (peak 2.229 April 23)

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Confirmed Cases

175,047  New Cases
> 7-day average  173,169

Currently Hospitalized

88,080  Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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Election 2020: The power of love and hate…

November 24, 2020

Inner circle friends and relatives will attest that, for months, I didn’t think Trump would get re-elected.

Nothing to do with policies or performance …

My rationale: Hate is a much stronger emotion than love … and that Trump-haters would overwhelm Trump-lovers (and Trump-tolerators).

That dynamic seems to have played out …

All surveys that I’ve seen indicate that a majority of Biden voters admit that their vote was primarily anti-Trump, not pro-Biden … and, the vast  majority of Trump voters were pro-Trump and indifferent to Biden.

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Apparently, I’m not the only person who has been thinking along these lines.

Jason Whitlock is a longtime sports writer and, these days,  cultural / political podcaster known for strong, sometimes controversial points-of-view.

In a recent podcast, Whitlock opined:

The 2020 election shows the power of love versus the power of hate.

click for video and transcript
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More specifically …

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Gallup says that 90% regularly wear masks…

November 24, 2020

So, if masks work, why are COVID cases soaring?
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COVID cases are soaring … and while the infection-to-fatality rate has dropped significantly, the daily tally of new deaths has been creeping up.

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CDC Director Redfield has testified:

Face coverings are the most powerful public health tool” the nation has against the coronavirus and “might even provide better protection against it than a vaccine.

The COVID death rate will be cut in half if mask compliance were 100%

With that in mind, a recent  WSJ article on “COVID" Fatigue” had a chart that caught my eye.

The high red line below  is the percentage of people who claim that they regularly wear masks when they leave home.

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Bottom line: Gallup says that over 90% of respondents claim they wear masks in public settings … that’s up from 80% who said so in May.

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Connecting the dots: Redfield says masks are more effective than vaccines … and, the vast majority of people say they regularly wear masks … but, cases are soaring.

How can that be?

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Nov. 24: C-19 Data Dashboard

November 24, 2020

263,687 Deaths-to-Date

972 Daily New Deaths    (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 1,579   (peak 2.229 April 23)

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Confirmed Cases

172,103  New Cases
> 7-day average  171,077

Currently Hospitalized

86,836  Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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So, how risky is a Thanksgiving gathering?

November 23, 2020

Let’s throw some math at the question…
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It’s not a conscious thing, but these days, our brains are constantly running risk assessments:

  1. What’s the likelihood that I get exposed to COVID?
  2. What’s the likelihood that I get infected?
  3. How bad will it be if I do get infected?

Unfortunately, “the science” hasn’t been providing us with much useful “data to follow” on those questions.

So far, the best data is on question #3: How bad will it be if I do get infected?

CDC: 95% survivability rate if over 70 … higher with no symptoms, no co-morbidities or younger.

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Those are pretty good odds, right?
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Today, let’s look at question #1 — the likelihood of getting exposed to the virus, say, at a Thanksgiving gathering.

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Nov. 23: C-19 Data Dashboard

November 23, 2020

262,694 Deaths-to-Date

864 Daily New Deaths    (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 1,552    (peak 2.229 April 23)

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Confirmed Cases

135,593  New Cases
> 7-day average  169,055

Currently Hospitalized

83,870  Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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Nov. 22: C-19 Data Dashboard

November 22, 2020

261,790 Deaths-to-Date

1,460 Daily New Deaths  (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 1,505    (peak 2.229 April 23)

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Confirmed Cases

172,839  New Cases
> 7-day average  169,245

Currently Hospitalized

83,227  Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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Part 2: Mail-in ballot verification is a sham!

November 21, 2020

Specifically, high-volume signature verification is a farce.
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Yesterday, we walked thru my linked experiences: getting a Maryland driver’s license, registering to vote, requesting an absentee ballot and casting an absentee ballot.

The key takeaways:

  • As part of the D/L process, the state captured an electronic facsimile of my signature (that I etch-a-sketched on an electronic keypad)
  • Also as part of the D/L process, I registered to vote … and, my electronic facsimile signature was posted to my voting registration.
  • Later, I requested an absentee ballot online.  When I did, I provided basic ID info but no signature — just a checked box indicating that I agreed to an electronic non-signing
  • When I sent in my absentee ballot, I manually signed the over-wrapping secrecy envelope — not the ballot.

Now, the million dollar question: Given the above takeaways, how did my ballot get verified?

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Nov. 21: C-19 Data Dashboard

November 21, 2020

260,212 Deaths-to-Date

1,956 Daily New Deaths  (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 1,474    (peak 2.229 April 23)

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Confirmed Cases

201,434  New Cases
> 7-day average  167,907

Currently Hospitalized

82,178  Current level

> Prior Peaks: 59,700 Apr 12, July 24
> Prior Lows:  28,000 June 21, Sept 20

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Nov. 20: C-19 Data Dashboard

November 20, 2020

258,281 Deaths-to-Date

2,012 Daily New Deaths  (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 1,391    (peak 2.229 April 23)

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Confirmed Cases

188,523  New Cases
> 7-day average  163,464

Currently Hospitalized

80,698  Current level

> Highest day    80,698  Nov. 19
> Prior Peak       59,719  July 23
> Lowest point   27,895  June 14

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Face it: Mail-in ballot verification is a sham!

November 19, 2020

Specifically, high-volume signature verification is a pipe dream.
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Let’s start with some basics, illustrated with my personal experience…

Last year, when I retired, I officially moved from Virginia to scenic Annapolis, Maryland.

Dutifully, I marched into the DMV to get a Maryland driver’s license.

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As part of the process, I had to “write” my signature on an electronic pad to create a  digital recording of it.

Note: For physical and behavioral reasons — how we write and how careful we are –these electronic signatures are known to be problematic … this is, they are oftern poor representations of a person’s “real” manual signature.  Anybody who has used one of these devices knows what I’m talking about.

And, as part of the Maryland licensing process, I was offered the chance to simultaneously register to vote.  I did.

Note: My voter registration’s “signature” was, of course, the same electronic facsimile that got posted to my driver’s license. This is important later in my story

So far, so good.

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Now, let’s got through my recent encounter with the absentee voting process…

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Nov. 19: C-19 Data Dashboard

November 19, 2020

256,218 Deaths-to-Date

1,920 Daily New Deaths  (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 1,277    (peak 2.229 April 23)

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Confirmed Cases

169,796  New Cases
> 7-day average  159,360

> Highest day        170,733  Nov. 13
> April 24 peak      36,291
> June 8 low point  17,414

Currently Hospitalized

79,410  Current level

> Highest day    79,410  Nov. 18
> Prior Peak       59,719  July 23
> Lowest point   27,895  June 14

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Voter registration lists are a mess…

November 18, 2020

… and, mail-in ballot verification is a sham.
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In a prior post, we argued that assertions that there is “no widespread fraud” is meaningless since relatively small scale fraud that is localized can tilt elections … and that “no systematic fraud has been found” is misleading if the system itself provides ample opportunity to cheat and nobody is trying to find the cheating.

As the old adage says: The absence of evidence of wrong-doing is not evidence that there is no wrong-doing.

The latter — ample opportunity to cheat — is a manifestation of voter registration lists that are a mess and ballot verification procedures that are a sham.

Today, let’s look at voter registration lists, starting with a comprehensive study done by the Pew Trust.

click to view report
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Based on their analysis, Pew concluded:

About 24 million — 1 in every 8 — voter registration records are invalid or “significantly inaccurate”.

Of the 24 million:

  • More than 1.8 million dead individuals are listed as active registrants.
    n Approximately 2.8 million people are registered to vote in more than one state
  • Wrong addresses account for most of the 24 million “significant  inaccuracies”

These issues are non-fatal nuisances when voting is done in-person with a required photo ID: dead people don’t show up in person, its tough for multi-state registrants to show up in both (or all) states (save for crossing the Nevada-California border), and wrong addresses get scrutinized closely when segregated as provisional ballots.

But, when a state opens the mail-in floodgates, these registrations inaccuracies can tilt an election.

Let’s get specific…

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When states carpet-bomb ballots to everybody on their voter registration lists, 1 in 8 (12.5%) ballots get mailed to somebody who is dead, registered in another state or has moved to another address.

The “dead ballots” can be cast by somebody else  … maybe somewhat innocently  (e.g. Grandma would want this since she always voted Democratic) … or maliciously (e.g. bad actors “harvesting” the “dead ballots”).

Either way, it’s voting fraud!

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Similarly, multi-state registrants may be intentionally playing the system to vote more than once (a mortal sin) … or, may be thinking that it’s OK to do since the state “legitimized” their vote by sending them a ballot.

Note: Last year,  I moved and changed my voter registration.  This year, I was deluged with letters and phone calls urging me to vote in my old state.

Either way, it’s voting fraud!

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What about the millions of wrong addresses on file?

Think about it: Millions of ballots go to the wrong address!

Note: Pew says that 1 in 8 people move every 2 years — between election cycles … and 1 in 4 young people move in that time.

What’s the problem?

First, people who legitimately should get a ballot don’t because their address hasn’t been updated.

Note: we have first-hand experience of this happening to our immediate family members.

Second, persons who currently reside at the address on file have the opportunity to vote the ballot … no muss, no fuss.

But, don’t these cases get caught and rectified?

Dream on.

In concept, the ballot verification process should snag these errant votes but — as we’ll detail  in another post — the verification processes  (think: signature verification) is porous to sham status.

And, consider what happens when a person who hasn’t received a ballot shows up to vote in person.

If a bad actor has sent in their mail-in ballot, the legit person is flagged for voting twice and given a provisional ballot to be researched and either tossed or validated (with the mail-in ballot voided).

I’m betting the under on that process ever happening!

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Cumulatively, these loopholes provide ample opportunity for bad actors to cheat … maybe enough to tilt an election …– especially when ballots are carpet-bombed to everybody on voter registration lists.

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Absentee ballot processes used by many states mitigate the problems somewhat but don’t eliminate them.

They just shift the focus to ballot verification processes … which we’ll cover in another post.

Nov. 18: C-19 Data Dashboard

November 18, 2020

254,255 Deaths-to-Date

1,615 Daily New Deaths  (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 1,191    (peak 2.229 April 23)

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Confirmed Cases

157,248  New Cases
> 7-day average  154,760

> Highest day        170,733  Nov. 13
> April 24 peak      36,291
> June 8 low point  17,414

Currently Hospitalized

76,830  Current level

> Highest day    73,014  Nov. 16
> Prior Peak       59,719  July 23
> Lowest point   27,895  June 14

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First, it was “mostly peaceful protests”…

November 17, 2020

Now, it’s “no widespread voter fraud” or “no systematic fraud”
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Like roughly 73 million other Americans, I thought it was surreal this summer when the MSM and left-leaning pundits, coined the phrase “mostly peaceful protests” … and then oft-repeated it to establish the faux-truth among a gullible constituency.

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Literally billions of dollars of destruction, businesses burned to the ground, stores looted and people intimidated when walking the streets or dining at restaurants.

IMHO, that’s hardly “peaceful”.

Practically speaking, “peaceful” is a binary variable, not a matter of degree. Especially for those innocent people who lost their businesses, had their neighborhoods burned to a crisp or got roughed up.

My view: “mostly peaceful” is a frightening measure of civil conduct.

Right up there with “the end justifies the means”.

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Now, we’ve got a new low bar for civil behavior: “no widespread voter fraud” … or its close cousin: “no systematic voting fraud”.

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Nov. 17: C-19 Data Dashboard

November 17, 2020

252,633 Deaths-to-Date

721 Daily New Deaths  (peak 2,824 April 21)
> 7-day average 1,169    (peak 2.229 April 23)

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Confirmed Cases

157,951  New Cases
> 7-day average  152,612

> Highest day        170,733  Nov. 13
> April 24 peak      36,291
> June 8 low point  17,414

Currently Hospitalized

73,014  Current level

> Highest day    73,014  Nov. 16
> Prior Peak       59,719  July 23
> Lowest point   27,895  June 14

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