90 Miles From Tyranny : 2023-01-08

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Saturday, January 14, 2023

Girls With Guns

Visage à trois #713

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Quick Hits Of Wisdom, Knowledge And Snark #896


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What Caused the Political Hysteria? Karma, Nemesis, payback . . . and all that stuff.

The Left has gone mad over Donald J. Trump—past, present, and future.

The current Democratic Party and NeverTrump “conservatives” assumed that Trump was and remains so obviously toxic that they do not have to define exactly what his evil entails.

Accordingly, they believe that any means necessary are justified to stop him. And furthermore, these zealots, when out of power, insist such extraordinary measures should not be emulated and institutionalized by their opponents, much less ever boomeranged back upon their creators.

In this context, the Republicans retaking control of the House of Representatives once again raises the question whether they should reply in kind.

Given the current investigation following the Mar-a-Lago raid, should there also be a mirror-image special prosecutor to examine President Biden’s lost stash of classified documents in his insecure office following his vice presidency?

Can House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) ever be considered too inflammatory, given that his predecessor, former Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) tore up the president’s State of the Union address on national television?

How many Democratic House members should be denied committee assignments to remind the Congress that Pelosi’s rejection of Republican nominees was a terrible precedent?

How many congressional subpoenas with threats of criminal prosecution and performance-art arrests should be issued to Democratic politicos to stop the criminalization of political differences?

In our current age, will all former president’s private homes, closets, and drawers now be subject to FBI raids to ensure that “classified” documents were not wrongly stored there?

Are Joe Biden’s current homes also a logical target, given his sloppy handling of classified foreign policy papers—eerily reminiscent of an abandoned laptop belonging to son Hunter Biden and daughter Ashley Biden’s lost diary?

Was it ever a good idea to impeach a first-term president the moment he lost his party’s majority in the House—but without any hope of a conviction in the Senate? Would such a similar impeachment send a warning to Biden to honor his oath of office and start enforcing U.S. immigration law?

Does a phone call now an impeachment make, on the grounds that Trump mixed domestic politics with foreign policy?

But was Trump’s Ukrainian call that much different from Barack Obama’s 2012 quid pro quo in Seoul, South Korea, where he asked the Russian president to convey a deal to Vladmir Putin: stay calm and give Obama space during his reelection bid while Obama in turn would be flexible on missile defense.

Putin did just that and put off invading Ukraine until Obama was reelected. And Obama made sure there was no joint missile defense projects in Eastern Europe. Was that deal in America’s interest, or Obama’s own and thus similarly impeachable?

Or consider Joe Biden mixing foreign policy and politics on the eve of the midterm elections. For example, he kept draining the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to dangerously low levels while begging hostile foreign dictators to...

A Top HHS Official Blocked Release of Long-Delayed Fluoride Toxicity Review, Internal Emails Reveal

Newly released emails reveal that leadership within the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and National Institutes of Health (NIH) acted to prevent the release of long-delayed review of fluoride’s toxicity by the National Toxicology Program (NTP).

The emails specifically claim that Assistant Secretary for Health Rachel Levine intervened to stop the release of the NTP review, also known internally as a monograph.

An email dated June 3, 2022, shows Nicole Johnson, associate director for policy, partnerships and strategic communication in CDC’s Oral Health Division contacting Jennifer Greaser, a senior public health policy analyst in CDC’s Washington office.

Johnson states:

“The latest we heard (yesterday) is that ASH Levine has put the report on hold until further notice.”

ASH Levine refers to the U.S. Assistant Secretary of Health, Rachel Levine.

The emails were released as part of the ongoing legal dispute between the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and plaintiffs Food & Water Watch, the Fluoride Action Network and others who are seeking an end to water fluoridation.

Throughout the historic lawsuit, the plaintiffs have argued that the practice violates the EPA’s Toxic Substances Abuse Act.

Hearings for the lawsuit began in June 2020 but were delayed for more than two years after U.S. District Court Judge Edward Chen put the proceedings on hold pending the release of the NTP’s review of all of the available research on fluoride.

The NTP had previously claimed the review would be available in May 2022. However, the review has not been made public and hearings have been delayed and rescheduled as the judge awaited the NTP’s conclusions.

In late October 2022, Judge Chen ended the two-year stay on the lawsuit when he ruled that the NTP review could be viewed in its unpublished form to better inform his final decision. However, due to concerns from the EPA, Judge Chen ruled that the report could not be made public unless the NTP releases it.

On Dec. 14, 2022, the plaintiffs filed several exhibits with Judge Chen, including a redacted version of the NTP’s assessment of fluoride’s neurotoxicity and internal emails between the CDC and the NTP which were obtained via Freedom of Information Act requests.
What do the #FluorideEmails reveal?

Michael Connett, attorney for the plaintiffs, outlined the findings of the emails in several exhibits submitted to Judge Chen. “These emails confirm that the NTP considered the May 2022 monograph to be the NTP’s final report,” Connett writes.
“They also confirm that the CDC was opposed to the NTP releasing the report, and that leadership at the top levels of the Department of Health Human Services intervened to stop the report from...

Visage à trois #712

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Quick Hits Of Wisdom, Knowledge And Snark #895


Quick Hits Of Wisdom, Knowledge And Snark #887

More than two-thirds of Congress cashed a pharma campaign check in 2020, new STAT analysis shows

WASHINGTON — Seventy-two senators and 302 members of the House of Representatives cashed a check from the pharmaceutical industry ahead of the 2020 election — representing more than two-thirds of Congress, according to a new STAT analysis of records for the full election cycle.

Pfizer’s political action committee alone contributed to 228 lawmakers. Amgen’s PAC donated to 218, meaning that each company helped to fund the campaigns of nearly half the lawmakers on Capitol Hill. Overall, the sector donated $14 million.

The breadth of the spending highlights the drug industry’s continued clout in Washington. Even after years of criticism from Congress and the White House over high prices, it remains routine for the elected officials who regulate the health care industry to accept six-figure sums.

The findings, published in a new STAT examination of the drug industry’s political giving, also come on the heels of an extraordinary year for the pharmaceutical industry. In 2020, the federal government leaned heavily on drug makers to develop Covid-19 vaccines at lightning speed — helping to rehabilitate the industry’s reputation and political credibility in the process.

STAT’s analysis includes an interactive map that allows readers to visualize contributions between individual drug industry PACs and states, lawmakers, and congressional districts. It builds upon a previous analysis STAT published before the election, and now includes complete records for the 2020 election cycle.

Donations from companies like Pfizer and Amgen are among the most visibly widespread.

Pfizer, which played arguably the biggest role in 2020’s vaccine race, also had a frenzied year politically. In addition to giving roughly $1 million to members of Congress, Pfizer also wrote checks to 1,048 individual candidates in state legislative races.

While the drug industry gave money to a broad range of candidates, it focused in particular on those on key committees that oversee health care legislation.

The top recipient of drug industry cash was Rep. Richard Hudson, a Republican from North Carolina. Major drug industry groups donated $139,500 to his most recent campaign, a sum remarkable in large part because Hudson is not a particularly powerful lawmaker, nor a known fundraiser. He does hold a seat on the Energy and Commerce Health subcommittee, an influential panel that oversees a large share of health care legislation before...

Morning Mistress

The 90 Miles Mystery Video: Nyctophilia Edition #1263

Before You Click On The "Read More" Link, 

Please Only Do So If You Are Over 21 Years Old.

If You are Easily Upset, Triggered Or Offended, This Is Not The Place For You.  

Please Leave Silently Into The Night......

The 90 Miles Mystery Box: Episode #1963

You have come across a mystery box. But what is inside? 
It could be literally anything from the serene to the horrific, 
from the beautiful to the repugnant, 
from the mysterious to the familiar.

If you decide to open it, you could be disappointed, 
you could be inspired, you could be appalled. 

This is not for the faint of heart or the easily offended. 
You have been warned.

Hot Pick Of The Late Night


Friday, January 13, 2023

Girls With Guns

Visage à trois #711

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Quick Hits Of Wisdom, Knowledge And Snark #894

Quick Hits Of Wisdom, Knowledge And Snark #890

The Russian Twitter Bots Story Is A Study In Media’s ‘Lie, Set The Narrative, Then Quietly Backtrack’ Playbook

The three-step process is regime media’s MO: spread a false claim, crush dissent, then admit the truth once the news cycle achieves its purpose.

he Washington Post admitted Monday that “Russian trolls on Twitter had little influence on 2016 voters” — years after the Post and other corporate media water-carriers pushed the false story that former President Donald Trump’s election was illegitimate, due in part to Russian interference via bots on Twitter targeting U.S. social media users. The admission cites a New York University study that found “there was no relationship between exposure to the Russian foreign influence campaign and changes in attitudes, polarization, or voting behavior.”

Media treatment of the non-story followed a predictable, three-step process that’s become the propaganda press’s MO: Spread a false claim, control the narrative while crushing dissent with bogus “fact checks,” and then admit the truth only after the news cycle has achieved its intended purpose.

How the Russian Bots Story Followed the Playbook

In 2016, then-Clinton campaign manager Robby Mook launched the conspiracy theory that then-candidate Trump was in cahoots with Russia and colluding together to steal the 2016 election. One dossier full of bunk allegations commissioned by the Clinton campaign later, the entire media establishment, in tandem with a politicized intelligence community, was running with the Russia collusion hoax.

One of the many conspiracy theories thrown at the wall was that Russia was influencing U.S. voters via social media, including through armies of “bot” accounts. As my colleague Joy Pullmann has noted, U.S. intelligence agencies propelled that claim with an “intelligence community assessment” on Jan. 6, 2017, “signed off publicly by the FBI, National Security Agency, and CIA concluding that Trump’s election was boosted by Russian social media content farms.”

Regime media ran with it the same narrative before and after that assessment that turned out to be false:

The Washington Post: “Russian propaganda effort helped spread ‘fake news’ during election, experts say,” November 2016.

Politico Magazine: “How Russia Wins an Election” (spoiler: “the Kremlin’s troll army swarmed the web to spread disinformation and undermine trust in the electoral system,” the piece says), December 2016.

NPR: “How Russian Twitter Bots Pumped Out Fake News During The 2016 Election,” April 2017.

New York Times: “The Fake Americans Russia Created to Influence the Election,” September 2017.

Mother Jones: “Twitter Bots Distorted the 2016 Election — Including Many Likely From Russia,” October 2017.

The “Twitter Files” revealed just weeks ago that media pressure on this story, combined with threats from elected Democrats, were successful in getting Twitter to obey U.S. intelligence agency requests for information suppression, even though Twitter executives couldn’t find any evidence of coordinated Russian disinformation campaigns on...

US Army Explains How to Respond When a Soldier Questions Showering With ‘a Female Who Has Male Genitalia’

The U.S. Army has prepared extensive guidance for how to integrate transgender soldiers into its ranks, including instructions for group showers and how to respond to pregnant men, newly revealed training documents show.

President Joe Biden restored an Obama-era directive codifying service for many transgender individuals shortly after taking office in 2021 amid competing judgments about the influence of gender-related psychological issues and medical procedures on a person’s fitness for service. While the number of transgender individuals currently serving is likely small, the training materials, dated August 2021, imagine a variety of problems officers and soldiers might encounter related to transgender members.

One slide in the “Tier Two” training materials addresses how an officer should respond when a soldier approaches “to discuss his newly confirmed pregnancy.” The training materials, first reported by The Wall Street Journal, come in three versions, with Tier One aimed at staff, Tier Two focused on commanders and Tier Three directed at individual units and soldiers.

“Understand that Soldiers who have transitioned gender may remain susceptible to medical conditions associated with their birth gender,” the materials advise.

Soldiers have to accept living conditions with little or no privacy, including in open-bay showers, where women might find themselves bathing alongside “a female who has male genitalia” or vice versa.

“Soldiers must accept living conditions that are often austere, primitive and characterized by little or no privacy,” the slide reads. Commanders can install new privacy features or adjust showering schedules, but no transgender-only spaces are permitted, according to the guidance.

While the Army will pay for a transgender soldier’s gender transition surgery, it won’t provide additional funding to add curtains or shower hooks inside stalls, according to materials labeled “special staff training.”

“Transgender soldiers are not expected to modify or adjust their behavior based on the fact that they do not ‘match’ other soldiers,” one slide in the Tier Three training packet reads. Transgender soldiers will be held to the same standards as others in their claimed gender and will be discharged if medical conditions “related to their gender identity” impede their ability to serve.

In another “vignette,” as the guidance calls them, officers are presented with a scenario involving a soldier transitioning to become female and who is on an Army-prescribed medical plan that includes hormone treatments and is expected to take six months.

“After five months, however, it becomes increasingly difficult for the soldier to meet male body composition standards,” the slide reads. The solution: Commanders are authorized to push back the soldier’s test date or give the soldier extended leave.

The soldier’s medical regime and inability to meet gender-based physical requirements “should be treated as any other medical issues would be treated,” the slide states. “The soldier is responsible to continue to meet all male standards until the gender marker is changed in DEERS,” the personnel records system.

Soldiers are permitted to request an exception to policy and adopt alternative fitness standards to those associated with their official pre-transition gender, the slides say.

Still another vignette describes how a soldier “assigned male at birth” and diagnosed with gender dysphoria, a disqualifying condition under the Trump administration, might have his “medically necessary” gender reassignment surgery disrupted by...

Visage à trois #710

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Quick Hits Of Wisdom, Knowledge And Snark #893


Quick Hits Of Wisdom, Knowledge And Snark #889