Friday, April 10, 2020


We had Perry Henzel's No Place Like Home on 
and this cover came up in a club scene:
In a million years I would not have guessed it was Etta James.

•  This fucking guy:

I think we underestimate how much of Trump's bullshit is based on his public speaking style, which is basically cribbed from Home Shopping Network pitchmen and old-fashioned carney barkers, and demands that one never stop talking and never stop pitching, no matter what. There's also his favored "people say" locution, which means he saw it, or maybe something like it, or maybe the opposite of what he's saying it said, or maybe he's just making it up on the spot but the main thing is you can't pin it on him it's what PEOPLE SAY. These days we're very focused on his criminal neglect and cynical manipulation of the crisis and the deaths attributable to it, but another long-term effect will be that if we ever get a coherent president again (Biden doesn't count, unless they lace him up with The Formula), people won't be able to follow what he or she is saying because formal sentence structure will have become an arcane mystery.

•  Speaking of pitchmen, rather than send you to my newsletter Roy Edroso Breaks It Down I'm going to just pull a relevant section from a recent issue, about David Harsanyi's weird National Review article "The Left’s Ugly Reaction to Hydroxychloroquine," and paste it here:

Harsanyi is talking about liberals noticing that Trump has a small financial interest in the drug — which of course he does, as he has made clear from the beginning that he doesn’t intend to avoid conflicts of interest of any size.

Now, Trump’s direct pharma interest is not the big problem with his hucksterism — which is that MAGA people may be making a run on the stuff, creating a shortage that’s keeping it from the lupus sufferers and others for whom the drug has actually been approved and who need it. In fact some hospitals have been “hoarding” the drug for fear of such a shortage.

But even though big-time MSM outlets such as the Washington Post have been saying that “Trump’s promotion of hydroxychloroquine is almost certainly about politics, not profits,” Harsanyi pretends to be mortally offended not only that liberals would even consider that Trump may have a venal interest, but also that they would question his devotion to the welfare of his subjects:
For one thing, and I realize this might be difficult for some people to comprehend, it’s plausible, even likely, that Trump advocates for chloroquine because he is legitimately optimistic that a therapeutic answer might help Americans. Even if you feel he’s being reckless when speaking about the drug, you can accept that his intentions are good.
I have to admit: the weird weevils of the wingnut demimonde have a lot of crazy ideas, but I doubt any of them seriously believes that the Boss ever does anything out of fellow-feeling.

The funny/saddest thing in Harsanyi’s essay is its conclusion:
You don’t need to send me angry emails detailing all the downsides of championing potential drugs already in use for other diseases. One of my children takes hydroxychloroquine to help mitigate a dangerous autoimmune condition. I’ve already had to work hard to track down hydroxychloroquine because we live in a world with unethical hospitals and doctors who hoard it. Believe it or not, they’d still be doing it if the president hadn’t ever mentioned it, because they believe it holds promise.
See? Despite what you might think, chloroquine is not being hoarded by Trump fans because their God-Emperor has been hawking it like the ShamWow guy at press briefings — it’s because those damn hospitals and doctors have been hoarding it for their so-called patients, just like Trump says states are hoarding the ventilators!

And Harsanyi’s got a kid who needs the stuff. Greater love hath no man! Maybe if the Boss notices how much he’s willing to sacrifice to show fealty to him, he’ll share some his stash with him.

•  Update! Longtime readers especially will appreciate this Victor Davis Maximus Super Hanson sighting, by Muriel Volestrangler (not her real name) in comments:
You'll like this, Roy: after an article about a Stanford medical team doing coronavirus antibody testing, Victor Davis Hanson saw it, thought "Stanford - that's me!!!", and found a gullible reporter to whom he became a "Stanford researcher", and fed his "California got the virus last fall!!!" hallucination. 
This was then picked up by media outlets who ought to know better, such as SFGate - but who have since withdrawn it, realising it's an old man with an ancient Greek fixation trying to pass himself off as a researcher in some vaguely relevant discipline.
The SF Gate story has indeed been withdrawn though the Wayback Machine retains a copy. ("'Something is going on that we haven't quite found out yet,' said Victor Davis Hanson a senior fellow with Stanford's Hoover Institute," LOL). There's a more thorough examination by Jane Hu at Slate:
Hanson’s recent work, published in National Review, suggests he is eager to reopen the American economy. It would be quite convenient, then, to claim that the virus has already torn through the U.S. and granted us immunity. (In that article, Hanson also claims that “much of the virus modeling is nearly worthless” and refers to it as “science,” in scare quotes.) 
Hanson also (incorrectly) suggests that the virus’s spread in California came from “Chinese nationals” visiting California. Looking more closely at his recent work reveals a potential political motive for that claim; in a recent op-ed for Fox News, he argues that we already have too many Chinese nationals visiting, studying, or collaborating in the U.S., and that post-coronavirus America should “wake up” and make changes.
Hanson's Fox story is headlined, "After coronavirus — will America be a roaring giant or crying baby?" so you see he hasn't lost his sense of style. And he's spreading racist bullshit at a higher level than ever! Maybe Trump sent him a big enough reward to replace the chainsaw the Messicans stole from him.

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