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Non-Farm Friday – Is America Working?

Fact Check: The Best & Worst Presidents for Job Growth Since World ...Up and up the Futures go.

Pretty much every day the Futures climb higher and higher yet, 3 weeks after we took back the 2,850 line on the S&P – we're only at 2,909 this morning but don't get too attached to that as the Non-Farm Payroll Report comes out at 8:30 and it's possible we'll show a loss over 20M jobs in the month of April, wiping out ALL of Trump's gains (4.7M), ALL of Obama's gains (8.9M) and, even if we ignore Bush Jr's losses, we've still lost so many jobs under Trump that it even eats into Clinton's (Bill, not Hillary – thank goodness she's not President, right?) 18.9M jobs gained.  

So, effectively, in year 4 of the Trump Administration, America has lost so many jobs (perhaps 30M total) that he has wiped out all of the US job gains since 1993.  Keep in mind, by the way, that there were only 260M people in the US in 1993 so we now have 70M more people and NONE of them have jobs!  Are you tired of winning yet?  I know a lot of you may think it's unfair to "blame" Donald Trump for his blatant mishandling of the virus response (still ongoing) but you have to ask yourself, honestly, do other developed countries have a 14.7% unemployment rate?  No, because their Governments acted to insure job security for their people during the lockdown.  

Do other countries have 1.25M infections and 76,000 deaths?  Of course not – we are just 4% of the World's entire population yet we have 32% of the World's cases so 8 TIMES WORSE than the average country and 76,000 deaths out of 270,000 Globally gives us 28% of that total too so 7 TIMES WORSE than the average country and, don't forget, without the US blowing up the curve – the average country would be 30% lower.

Daily morning cartoon / meme roundup: tRump's incompetence a ...What's going on in the US is a travesty and it's a travesty of leadership and, although it sounds nice to say we should forget about politics and put all this blame aside and pull together and fight the virus – the virus isn't the problem.  EVERYBODY on Earth has the virus in their country – AMERICA is the country that is being devastated by it.  The reason American is being devasted by the virus is the incompetent failure of our Leadership – not being willing to recognize the problem is how we got here in the first place and it's how we're dragging the disaster out now!

When you have cancer, you don't tell the Doctor there are very fine cells on both sides of your body and we should just give the cancer another chance, do we?  No!  We cut it out!!!  When you recognize that something is killing you, you have to do what it takes to remove the problem and you can blame China, or you can blame the WHO or the CDC or whoever Fox is vilifying this week – but the proverbial buck stops at the desk of the President.

This was not some unpreventable catastrophe and, now that it's here, it's also not an unfixable catastrophe but if you don't have competent people in charge of fixing things – the catastrophe can be far worse.  See Puerto Rico or Katrina as recent examples.  Of course the President and his media lackeys want to wrap themselves in the flag and declare war on the virus (as if it cares) and tell everyone to pull togther – they are up for re-election and they don't want you to think very hard about why America is doing far worse than the rest of the World in their response or why relief still hasn't gotten to the vast majority of our citizens.  

Coronavirus Pandemic (COVID-19) - Statistics and Research - Our ...

This is NOT a chart you want to be leading the World in, peopleOr this one:

ImageYou are being told not to blame the President and that there's nothing we can do about the virus other than accept the fact that many, many more people will die (and they WILL be people you know and love) but that is BLATANTLY UNTRUE.  You are being told this by a failed Administration that is marching the entire country off to war against a disease without even the decency to properly equip us for the battle.  There are not enough tests, there is not enough PPE, there is no tracking system there are no quarantine rules – there is NOTHING that THE ENTIRE REST OF THE WORLD IS DOING – NOTHING!!!

You can ONLY blame the President for a failure of this magnitude – it is ENTIRELY his responsibility and, by the way, his fault!  And if we aren't even able to get together as a nation and see what the problem really is and begin to do something about it – well then I guess we are simply going to get what we deserve. 


Have a great weekend, 

- Phil


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  1. Good Morning.

  2. I was expecting bad numbers but still shocking:

    The impact of the coronavirus-induced economic shutdown tore through the U.S. labor market in April at historic levels, slashing 20.5 million workers from nonfarm payrolls and sending the unemployment rate skyrocketing to 14.7%, the Labor Department reported Friday.

  3. How long will it take to bring back these 20M jobs! How long did it take for the unemployment rate to go down after the 2008 crisis? This is not going to get fixed in 6 months. But hey, futures are up… $3.5T deficit, another $4T from the Fed. That's real growth right there.

  4. Third Week In A Row Of Massive Unemployment Claims

    It took 8 years to go from 10% to 5%! Then 2 more years to go to 4%. 

  5. Good Morning Phil,

    What are your thoughts on BBBY Bonds? I have a large position in BBBY stock and since it's down significantly since my purchase, I am thinking of buying BBBY bonds. I am not sure why the bonds are yielding 13% when BBBY has cash equal to their debt. Am I missing anything? 


    Thank you,


  6. maybe is enuf people wrote letters to the owner of twitter threatening to sue them for allowing an incompetent selfish liar from using their service his ability to blame others and generally cause the chaos he requires could be reduced. goodluck

  7. Good morning (for the market)!

    I'm glad we kept DIS, over $108 this morning.  As with everything else, they are re-opening so all fixed.  This is literally exactly like jaws – just re-open the damned beaches, ready or not.  What could go wrong?

    Congress is going to pass something that will remove the liability of businesses where people catch the virus.  The Dems want negligence to be a factor, the Republicans don't.  I don't think it matters, the Supreme Court hasn't held a business liable for anything in many years.  Well, it does matter as they don't want to be constantly in court over every illness, of course…

    The solution would be to have them follow inspected government guidelines in order to open and, if they follow the guidelines, then they can't be sued.   There, see how easy that is to fix?  

    We might not have enough gloves or masks or sanitizer or tests for people to go back to stores en mass but every home in America has a thermometer – can we at least check people's temperature before letting them into places where other people are mingling?  Can we do even one sensible thing as a nation?  

    Anyway, I hope the above answer's Potter from last night.  No it doesn't align you with Trump/Fox/Hitler just because you want to believe we should all get behind the President but THIS President IS the problem.  If Donald Trump were a ball of flames we'd try to keep him out of the Library of Congress, right?  He IS the problem.  His "leadership" is why we are failing to control the virus and his decisions are on the verge of potentially turning this already massive catastrophe into something of biblical proportions – they will remember Trump for centuries to come – that's for sure! 

    Being tired of a "God-awful situation" is no reason to give up on it.  The lunatics protesting and shooting security guards are THE PRESIDENT'S MEN – and not just because he encourages them, not just because he tied opening up America to the 2nd Amendment, encouraging protesters to show up to anti-State Government rallies fully armed.  No, not just because of that but because the same people who fund Donald Trump, the same people who promote right-wing propaganda, hatred against China and all foreigners (except Russia), the same people who flood Facebook and Twitter with all that divisive stuff you hate – are the people who back Trump and the GOP in all their other idiocy.

    The organisers behind these protests have largely been conservative, pro-Trump and pro-gun activists. US media have described many of these demonstrations as reminiscent of Trump campaign events, with pro-Trump banners, t-shirts, and signs aplenty.

    Signs calling for freedom over tyranny have also been staples of these protests. Governors have been likened to kings or dictators. "Give me liberty or give me death," a quote harkening back to the American Revolution has also been a popular mantra.

    Look no further than the first protest organized by the Michigan Conservative Coalition and the Michigan Freedom Fundwhose chairman manages the vast financial investments of Dick and Betsy DeVos, the Education Secretary — to see that the campaign to “open” America flows from the superrich and their front groups.

    Stephen Moore — a fellow at the Heritage Foundation, a Koch ally and a Trump adviser — admitted as much in a video I obtained comparing these new protesters to Rosa Parks, as first reported in The Times.

    Mr. Moore, who is now leading an enterprise to end the virus precautions called Save Our Country, which includes the Koch-backed American Legislative Exchange Council, boasted that he has been working behind the scenes with a conservative donor who agreed to cover bail and legal fees for demonstrators who get arrested for defying Wisconsin’s virus protective measures.

    If you want to stop the divisiveness, don't yell at the liberals, yell at these guys!  Yes, we need unity and compassion – like giving these protesters paychecks they can actually pay their bills with instead of short-changing them and forcing them to believe that they MUST go back to work to survive – fearing that very real pain more than the abstract devastation that may be caused by re-invigorating the viral growth in the US.

    I agree you can't not care for people who go out without masks, that would violate the principle of Universal Health Care, which I feel very strongly about.  Unfortunately you can't treat people for idiocy….

    I do not agree that the "Media" is trying to divide us.  Yes, there is left-wing media and right-wing media but there is also the truth and that, unfortunately, is also the enemy of the right-wing media so ALL media becomes divisive — as if there is no actual truth.  That is the saddest outcome of the Trump Administration – Freedom of the Press is meaningless if you get people to believe that the truth is only a matter of opinion, that integrity is a game you can win if you just pretend to have it more than the other guy.  The saddest thing of all is how many people I see buying into this nonsense.  CNN is not as bad as Fox – Fox is nothing but a propaganda network with less credibility than Pravda had.  If you don't see that – then it really doesn't matter what anyone says to you.

    Shocking numbers/StJ – Sure, but check out the stimulus we're throwing at it:


    As noted above, it took us 27 years to create those jobs, maybe half come back quickly but the rest are likely to be long-term damage. But look at all the stimulus!

    BBBY/Pat – I'm not a bond guy.  As a general thing, I wouldn't trust the bonds – there's a very real danger they go BK and you get nothing.  Cash equal to debt is good when you are not losing money.  This is a $700M company that lost $81M last Q and that Q ended in February!  March, April and May could be a $250M+ loss and BBBY hasn't made money at all in the last 5 years (-$1Bn).  They were on a path to turn around and I liked them last year but we haven't pulled the trigger again – even on this dip – because the situation now is not the same as it was last year.

  8. The only people talking up divisiveness are those on the right looking to keep their views 'fair and balanced'….

  9. Cognitive dissonance anyone?…. :(

  10. This is such a difficult point to communicate because it exists in political no man's land, it's a minefield.  The gut reaction is to defend the validity of ones hatred for Trump but that is not the question, we know he is a terrible president.. the more difficult task is convincing those who need convincing. 

    Every time you state an important fact about death tolls or unemployment but follow it with "that's a LOT of people - to those of you who watch FOX" (or similar) – what do you think happens? do you really think people who were on the fence think "gee, this guy is right, i have been an idiot for 20 years, i'm going to start watching CNN and change my political views" ? 

    And it transcends all forms of journalism. Reinforcing his absurdity to the left (Colbert/Oliver/CNN) causes, as i stated yesterday, the inverse reaction on the right. Trump and his cabinet have created a defense against moaning Democrats and their media outlets.  We MUST realize this plan of attack is not working.  Fox News successfully refers to other news sources as 'the media'.  We are attacking with the same weaponry over and over and eventually we will be the technically correct husband sleeping on the couch, for 4 more years. 

    You did touch on it Phil, with the concept of giving those who Trump prays on another way out.  But the ultra aggressive minority aside, we must focus on the millions and millions of progressive or almost progressive Republicans out there who have been swept into the pile of the radical-right, FOX wathcers because, even though they don't fully associate, thats as close as it gets for them.   

    There needs to be unity (im not talking about tree hugging) but that's another complex subject that i don't fully understand yet.  There needs to be more reduced-opinion journalism. A reduction in slander and gossip and (this a small point) that stock photo technique where news outlets pair pictures of politicians looking confused/angry/perverted to suit the headline of the story.  


  11. Seeing signs of illiquidity, especially in financials. Bid side pulled and testing, maybe.

  12. Personally, I would appreciate a lack of photos for all of our 'photogenic' politicians.


    In our home, any sight of an orange pie-hole on the boob tube is a great excuse for a pharmaceutical commercial…. :)

  13. Pat Swap Bonds 

    I have been considering bonds as well. Here is a Macy's that is priced to yield 16%. It was issued with a 2.875% coupon and now is priced at 71.25 instead of 100. That should tell you something about what the market thinks about their ability to pay interest in the less than 3 years to maturity!





    Cont Callable, Next Call 11-15-2022 @ 100.000, Make Whole Calls, MACY'S, INC.




     Moody's Report









  14. Trump’s push to reopen the economy comes as hope for a quick recovery fades

  15. Der Spiegel/1020 – I've always liked them.

    Convincing/Potter – I've given up convincing Trumpers.  Like Santa Clause, they will either grow up and accept reality or they won't but, unlike Santa – amazingly many of these people never will – no matter how much evidence there is or how many times he burns them.  They are a lost cause and I'm serious when I say this country needs to split – we are not going to reconcile these differences – we are two very different tribes of people who are almost polar opposites and, because of our "Democracy" nothing at all is accomplished on either side and the whole country goes down the tubes.  

    It's not my job to convince people to change their ways.  My job is to tell the truth and, if half the people don't like the truth – that's too bad for them.  If the beliefs they cling to are ridiculous and even funny – I will make fun of them.  Trumpy Conservatism is a fanatical religion, not politics.  They have a political party but it's based on faith and beliefs that are provably false by rational-minded people – facts aren't going to change their minds and I'm not a preacher (and, sadly, not many liberals are – which is why they slip further and further down their rabbit-hole every year).  

    Colbert, et al agree with me.  At this point, the positions of the Trumpians is ludicrous – you can only make fun of it in lieu of taking up arms against it.  "Moaning Demorcrats"???  You mean like "Oh that Hitler going on about the Jews – when are the Libs going to learn that half the country wants to fry them all in an oven and let it happen?  There's no sense in whining about it – many fine people think Jews are the devil and there's no reliable evidence that they are not outside the lamestream media so let's give the Final Solution a fair chance to work for the sake of the country!"  Is that about the right attitude we should apply to Trump?   Yes, if we protest Hitler and make fun of him, it will only anger the Hitler Youth and make them hate the Jews even more, so let's not do that and just wait out his term – how bad could it be? 

    But sure, let's all rally behind the flag – even if our leaders are taking us off a cliff on a path that is destroying the country – at least we'll all go down together.

    It's so much better to give in and be a joiner, isn't it?  You are simply espousing the propaganda you're consuming.  Of course they want you to get your friends to "go along" and not resist them – that's how they win!  Congratulations – you are a valuable influencer! 

    Are Hydroxychloroquine, Azithromycin 'Game Changers' in Fight ...
    • An observational study involving COVID-19 patients treated at New York-Presbyterian Hospital-Columbia University Irving Medical Center did not show a treatment benefit from the use of malaria drug hydroxychloroquine. The results were just published in the New England Journal of Medicine.
    • 1,446 patients were treated, 70 were intubated, died or were discharged within 24 hours so they were excluded from the analysis. Of the remaining 1,376, 811 received hydroxychloroquine (600 mg twice on day 1, then 400 mg daily for a median of five days). 45.8% (n=371/811) were treated within 24 hours after presentation to the emergency department and 85.9% (n=697/811) were treated with 48 hours.
    • Patients receiving the malaria drug were more severely ill at baseline than those who did not (n=565). Overall, 346 patients were either intubated (n=180, of which 66 subsequently died) or died without intubation (n=166).
    • The main analysis failed to show a relationship between hydroxychloroquine and a reduction in time to intubation or death.
    • The results dampen hopes that the drug would help COVID-19 patients considering that the U.S. has millions of doses available.
    • North American metallurgical coal producers including Peabody Energy (BTU +20.3%) and Arch Coal (ARCH +11.7%) are rallying, as seaborne prices reportedly rebound on Chinese buying.
    • Also: HCC +9.9%METC +5.8%TECK +2.8%.
    • Metal Bulletin says seaborne prices for premium hard coking coal rebounded today, partly attributed to active trading in China amid a wider rally in the commodities market.
    • Australian coking coal futures for May on the Singapore Exchange post their seventh straight increase, in the longest run of gains since November.
    • Icahn Enterprises (NASDAQ:IEPQ1 net loss of $1.38B, or $6.34 per unit, swelled from a loss of $394M, or $2.02, in the year-ago quarter.
    • Board approves quarterly distribution of $2.00 per depositary unit, the same as its previous distribution.
    • Indicative net asset value of $3.70B at March 31, 2020 sinks from $7.07B at Dec. 31, 2019; the Holding Company net assets were -$186M at Q1 2020-end vs. positive $186M at the end of Q4 2019; Holding Company cash and cash equivalents of $1.44B fell from $3.01B during the same period.
    • Q1 revenue of -$60.0M vs. $1.86B in the year-ago quarter.
    • Q1 expenses of $2.42B vs. $2.51M a year ago.
    • Q1 adjusted EBITDA attributable to IEP was -$1.30B vs. -$195M a year ago.
    • Previously: Icahn Enterprises EPS misses by $5.55, misses on revenue (May 8)
    • In a highly-anticipated development, J.C. Penney (NYSE:JCP) is preparing to file for bankruptcy protection as early as next week, according to Reuters.
    • Sources say the bankruptcy plan would include the debt-heavy company permanently closing about a quarter of its roughly 850 stores.
    • The stock, which once traded at over $80 in the pre-Amazon domination days, is now swapping hands at $0.20.
    • The question for department store peers like Kohl's (KSS -0.0%), Macy's (M +2.6%), Dillard's (DDS +4.7%) and Nordstrom (JWN +1.7%) is if any incremental JCP sales can be picked up.
    • Update: A J.C. Penney spokeswoman says the company has not made a decision yet on filing for bankruptcy.
    • MKM Partners flips the switch on Constellation Brands (STZ -1.2%) to bearish from bullish with a two-notch downgrade to straight to a Sell rating from Buy.
    • The firm warns STZ is seeing productivity and availability issues with certain shipments due out from Mexico.
    • "We estimate it takes 40 days to brew/ship many of Constellation’s beers, so current out-of-stock issues can’t improve until 40 days after STZ increases brewing capacity (best case: May 18th increased production begins resolving out-of-stock issue by June 27th)."
    • "Additionally, there is a very real risk that production won’t increase on May 18th (as most expect): 1) Mexico already pushed the date once. 2) Yesterday, President AMLO said business can resume in municipalities with no COVID-19 cases. STZ’s state has 534 and municipality has >22 cases. 3) A promised list (04/16/20) of municipalities that can re-open has not been provided."?
    • Boeing (BA +3.9%) enjoys an early boost after CEO Dave Calhoun tells Fox Business News that 737 MAX assembly lines will come back online this month.
    • "The MAX problem" set the company back by two years, Calhoun said, but "I'm confident we will (re-)start our line this month."
    • Discussing the broader aerospace industry, Calhoun says U.S. carriers likely will restore 30%-50% of previous flying schedules by year-end 2020 but take a full three years to regain 2019 levels and five years to return to a "growth curve," unless a virus vaccine is created.
    • Boeing will not resume stock buybacks until its debt is significantly paid down.
    • Wedbush analyst James Hardiman says the tone from Booking Holdings (NASDAQ:BKNG) with its earnings report and conference call, whether a function of conservatism or not, supports the firm's view that a recovery will take the next few years rather than the next few months.
    • "We would caution those who expect a V shaped recovery, but instead, investors should prepare for a long recovery period with potential setbacks along the way until a vaccine is in place. Still, we would tend to agree that travel demand will ultimately rebound and that strong travel companies such as BKNG may ultimately emerge from the current crisis even stronger than before," writes Hardiman.
    • Wedbush has a Neutral rating on BKNG and price target of $1,600.
    • Toronto-Dominion Bank (NYSE:TDexpects its U.S. retail segment to record a provision for credit losses of C$1.1B (US$0.8B) for fiscal Q2 2020.
    • Expects its corporate segment to record PCL of ~C$0.6B (US$0.4B) for the quarter.
    • PCL recorded in the corporate segment consists primarily of the retailer partners' share of PCL for the bank's U.S. strategic card portfolio. For this portfolio, the retailer partners' share of revenues and PCLs recorded in the corporate segment are fully offset through corporate non-interest expenses and therefore will result in no impact to corporate or total bank earnings in Q2.
    • TD reports results for fiscal Q2 ended April 30 on May 28, 2020.
    • Canada's labor market takes a beating, losing almost 2M jobs in April as non-essential businesses shuttered to slow the spread of COVID-19.
    • Brings cumulative employment losses since February to more than 3M.
    • The unemployment rate rose 5.2 percentage points to 13.0%, the second highest unemployment rate on record.
    • By contrast the rate ranged from 5.4% to 5.9% from March 2019 to February 2020.
    • Despite calling Uber's (NYSE:UBER) April a "horror show" of coronavirus headwinds, Wedbush maintains an Outperform rating and raises the price target from $30 to $38 after earnings.
    • A group of analysts led by Daniel Ives and Ygal Arounian notes the surprising strength of Uber Eats during the quarter and says cost-cutting will remain a key focus for the Street.
    • Wedbush raises its Q2 revenue estimate by 20% and now sees Eats sales of $853M, up from the prior $368M view.
    • More action: DA Davidson upgrades Uber from Neutral to Buy and increases the price target from $23.50 to $39, citing the improved profit profile, solid liquidity, and Eats expansion.
    • Bernstein (Outperform) raises Uber's PT from $32 to $35.
    • Uber shares are up 6.2% pre-market to $32.96.
    • Previously: Uber shares gain as execs see ride recovery (May. 07 2020)
    • Royal Caribbean Cruises (NYSE:RCL) warns continued disruptions to travel and port operations in various regions may result in further suspensions.
    • Due to the suspension in sailings, booking trends reflect elevated cancellations for 2020 and more typical levels for 2021 and beyond. Royal Caribbean says the booked position for 2021 is within historical ranges when compared to same time last year with 2021 prices up mid-single digits compared to 2020.
    • On the balance sheet, the company had $2.4B in customer deposits on March 31. This includes approximately $800M of future cruise credits related to previously announced voyage cancellations through June 11.
    • RCL +3.00% premarket to $39.17
    • Source: Press Release
    • April nonfarm payrolls-20.5M vs. -21.5M consensus and -870K previous (revised from -701K).
    • Unemployment rate: 14.7% vs. 16.4% consensus and 4.4% prior. The broader U6 unemployment rate skyed to 22.8% from 8.7%.
    • Unemployment reaches its highest rate and the largest over-the-month increase in the history of the series, back to January 1948.
    • Labor force participation rate fell by 2.5 percentage points over the month to 60.2%, the lowest rate since January 1973 (when it was 60%).
    • The number of persons not in the labor force who currently want a job, at 9.9M, nearly doubled in April.
    • Employment in leisure and hospitality plunged by 7.7M, or 47%, with almost three quarters of the decline in food services and drinking places (-5.5M).
    • Average hourly earnings increased by $1.34 to $30.01, reflecting the substantial job loss among lower-paid workers.

  16. "The stupid is strong"


    Sad, yet a bit :) and totally predictable….

  17. We need to go full psych eval on this. Trump supporters think Trump loves them. These are damaged people that have a lot of pain in their lives. Potter's right: you're not going to insult them on to your side. In normal circumstances, you'd completely ignore people like this; if people want to be miserable, that's their right. But when they vote emphatically for a universally destructive element, that affects the rest of us, too. So that's kind of the conundrum, and when Phil, and I do this too, say some comment with this type of addition "…. since math is too hard for you Fox viewers…" it's hard to resist turning the knife a bit. I mean, a reasonable human being SHOULD get it. 

    But as I said before there's a huge difference between reason and identity. I witness this, like I posted a week ago, in human motivation to reduce anxiety, i.e., how almost all people exhibit addict behavior of one sort or another in an attempt to control anxiety.  This "control" mechanism far exceeds the bounds of reason. Picture the simple example of someone who won't fly but drives around not wearing their seatbelt. That kind of thing. Or more so, drinking (alcoholic level) or taking heroin or ohabitual over-eating to suppress abusive parents, long ago molestation, etc etc etc.

    But consider now, this also extends to nature of a human relationships. My wife and I enjoy watching a show called 90-day fiance on TLC. There's a guy who has spent 7 years talking to his "girlfriend" through a single-point of access, fee-based website, where he's dropped $100k. He's gone to try and meet her FOUR TIMES and been stood up every time. He's hired a private investigator that basically came back with all of the copycat online profiles his "girlfriend" uses, to which he ignored and even called the investigator a liar. To anyone having at least some access to the concepts of reason and accountability, the subject is simply in a business arrangement where he pays a fee for service and gets this limited human interaction in return. How far he wants to take the limerence is up to him, but it is certainly what he's paying to get. However, the only person that doesn't see this is him. And this is an otherwise reasonable, normal guy from Las Vegas. Albeit, a 60 year old that thinks a 20-something gorgeous Ukrainian blonde is "in love" with him. But, yeah, normal. Right?

    Now take what potter is saying. Imagine going to this guy on a Phil-based Monday morning post and calling him an idiot. Trump guys feel love like this guy feels love. When faced with evidence from the investigator, the guy above wanted to run back to his "girlfriend" to "get the truth" of what's going on. It's like when a Trump supporter inadvertently hears real news somewhere. They run back to the teet (twitter) or the tent at least (fox news) to make sure they hear what they want, for the subject of the infatuation to call reality "Fake news." To make everything better again. When this happens, it's the same incredulous shock from "the rest of us." There's this persistence of protection however. They're not protecting Trump. They're protecting themselves, their limerence for this relationship, just like the guy above. It really is exactly the same thing. That's how Trump can be the exact opposite of real leadership and remain enthusiastically supported.

    An addict will go to the end. They will, without a doubt, kill themselves and take you with them and not care AT ALL as long as the drug keeps flowing. Hitler's guys gave their final salute even as the Nuremberg rope was about to snap. It goes all the way. Like all addicts, the only way forward is fact-based deconstruction of their fantasy world. We need to use FACTS to show how specific ACTIONS have specific CONSEQUENCES. It's annoying, because we have to be the adults. I want to yell and scream and be right and call people idiots too; it's human nature to bring emotion to the table. But potter is right. It'll never work. We also get played, because when we show the emotion trump wins since he's the master manipulator. We win by playing the game he's bad at.

  18. I'm glad we talk about this stuff here, because emotion based decisions come with abject financial consequences (heroin addicts usually don't get wealthier, I've noticed). We need to keep our nose to grindstone because it could all get REAL, very quickly, and at any time.

    I'm talkin' bitcoin 50,000 real! :)

  19. At that time, stocks at least had a leg to stand on, “albeit a wooden leg, riddled with woodworm,” he said, adding that this time around, the ratio is “based on nothing more than an ideological dream.”

    Now that was funny

  20. Good points BDC but doesn't fix anything.  It's like we're trying to reconcile the beliefs or Christians and Jews – it's not going to happen and no, "Jews for Jesus" is not a thing!  

    You can't ignore Trump's game when his game is destroying your country.  Historically, we could ignore someone who is "not my President" as Presidential powers were limited but that's not the case anymore and McConnell is hell-bent on packing those courts to insure that my daughters grow up under the Trump Reich with Liberty Media and Gerrymandering for all…

    I've been planning on leaving since Trump was elected.  My intention was to stay until the kids were done with college but now the colleges aren't even open – who knew we could fall apart this quickly?  Fortunately, my new home has a more competent Government:


    COVID-19 cases in the Bailiwick of Jersey  (

         Deaths        Recoveries        Active cases

    Mar Apr May Last 15 days

    # of cases
    # of deaths
    278(+0.8%) 19(=)
    280(+0.7%) 19(=)
    281(+0.4%) 19(=)
    283(+0.7%) 19(=)
    284(+0.4%) 20(+1)
    286(+0.7%) 21(+1)
    286(=) 23(+2)
    286(=) 24(+1)
    291(+1.7%) 24(=)
    292(+0.4%) 24(=)
    293(+0.4%) 24(=)
    293(=) 24(=)
    293(=) 25(+1)
    293(=) 25(=)
    293(=) 25(=)
    Data sourced from the Government of Jersey website.

    Last updated 8 May 2020.


    • On 30 January the Government of Jersey made its first announcement about the virus, saying that its cross-Government review group met that morning to discuss the situation.[10]
    • On 31 January the Government issued travel advice for islanders returning from affected areas of China.[11]
    • On 10 March, the first case was confirmed. The infected person had travelled from Italy.[12]
    • On 11 March a second case was confirmed.[13]
    • On 12 March, the advice from Senator John FondréChief Minister of Jersey was to maintain a semblance of normal life, including continuing to go on holidays off-island,[24] but by 14 March his advice changed, requesting over-65s to start social distancing,[25] and on 20 March he extended this advice to islanders of all ages.[26] Islanders must avoid non-essential travel.[27][28]
    • On 12 March, the Minister for Economic Development announced deferred social security and GST payments, and deferred rent for businesses where the government was the landlord.[47] On 20 March, he announced that government would pay a subsidy of up to £200 a week to workers in the hospitality, retail, wholesale and agriculture and fisheries industries until the end of April.[48] He announced an enhanced package of support on 26 March, using the island's strategic reserve – the so-called 'rainy day fund' – to pay up to 80% of the wages of affected staff in certain industries, capped at £1,600 a month.[49]
    • Jersey has its own health service, separate to the NHS.[50] Its Health & Community Services department has developed its own response to the virus, having planned for a possible pandemic since at least 2014.[51]
    • Military helicopters based at RNAS Culdrose in Cornwall are on standby to transport critically ill patients from Jersey to intensive care facilities at hospitals in the UK if necessary. They could also be used to fly in medicines, equipment and specialist doctors.[58]
    • On 19 March, the island's telecommunications operators announced a free increase in broadband speed to 1Gb/s for all subscribers.[95]
    • On 20 March there were 10 cases confirmed in Jersey, two of which were believed to have been contracted within the island.[14][15]
    • From 20 March all travellers arriving on the island, other than essential workers, must self-isolate for 14 days.[28] From midnight on 26 March those aged over 65 and people with certain underlying medical conditions must self-isolate.[31] On 28 March, islanders were told that if one or more people in a household develop COVID-19 symptoms then all the other members of the household must also self-isolate for 14 days.[32]
    • On the evening of 29 March, the Chief Minister announced a lockdown, effective from 8 am the following morning. Islanders must stay at home other than for short periods for specific purposes unless they are employed in an essential function.[34] On 24 April the initial lockdown was extended. until at least 11 May.[35]
    • The States Assembly passed new legislation, including a law to empower the police to remove people from public areas, enforce self-isolation, testing and screening, and detain those who are potentially infected.[36]
    • On 26 March the Chief Minister called for young people to heed the social distancing advice for the sake of their family members, and bemoaned the spread of unhelpful rumours by conspiracy theorists over social media.[33]
    • On 30 March, the Chief Minister stated that there were ten patients with COVID-19 being treated at the hospital.[16]
    • On 2 April, nine patients were being treated in hospital.
    • On 6 April, the number of confirmed cases totalled 169.[2] 19 patients at the hospital were being treated for COVID-19.
    • On 9 April the Government announced that a field hospital would be built on a playing field at Millbrook.[59] The so-called Nightingale hospital was expected to cost £14.4m and to take less than a month to build.[60] It would be 150m long and 30m wide, containing six wards of 30 beds each,[59] but could be expanded to contain up to 240 beds.[60] The field belongs to the family of Lord Trent.[59] The contractor building the site, J3 Limited, is a joint venture between Sir Robert McAlpine, Garenne Construction Group and FES Group. It was involved in building Nightingale hospitals in Glasgow and Manchester.[60]
    • On 15 April, Charlie Parker, Chief Executive of the Government of Jersey, stated that there were 21 patients with COVID-19 being treated at the Jersey General Hospital and eight others elsewhere in other hospital settings.[17]
    • On 20 April, 118 cases, almost 50% of confirmed cases, were now classified as recovered. In hospital there were 63 patients of which 14 were Covid-19 positive.[18]
    • The Chief Minister had said that antibody testing would be key to the ending of the lockdown with 10,000 kits arriving in Jersey in mid April, which were being tested, with a further 150,000 on order from a different supplier.[37]
    • On 11 May formal "stay at home" rules expire.


    The first death from COVID-19 was on 25 March. They person was aged in their 80s, had long-term health conditions and had been receiving palliative care before contracting COVID-19.[19] On 29 March a second person died. They were in their 70's and had long-term health conditions before contracting the virus.[20] On 4 April, a third death was announced – a patient in their late 60s who had underlying health conditions,[21] and the total number of cases confirmed stood at 126.[2]

    On 14 April the number of people that have died either under the care of Health & Community Services or in the community where the death certificate mentions COVID-19 increased to six.[22]

    On 27 April the Chief Minister revealed that nine of those that had died had done so at the General Hospital, two at St Saviour's Hospital (a facility where mental illness is treated), seven in care homes and the other in their own home. Most were aged in their 70s, 80s or 90s.[23]

  21. BDC--

    I love 90 day fiance — my wife and I watch it also.  Good analogy.  What I have found in my circles (this is a big generalization) is that extreme liberals will mock you, insult you, call you an idiot, and follow you down the street if you don't agree with them in every way.  Conservatives will mostly just shrug their shoulders and say "whatever" if you don't agree with them in any way.  It's not a good method (for liberals) to sway people in the middle – which is who they should be focused on – not the die-hard Trump supporters.  And that's a perspective from someone "in the middle".

  22. pence staffer tests positive  maybe the virus will at least slow the team trump agenda 

  23. 90 day – not my thing. I'm a 'liberal' and shrug my shoulders most the time. To each's own.


    Stupidity and a lack of empathy exists (the extremes) on both sides. I loath them both.


    I wear a mask because I care about you and me. Not blue and Red, but as a Human Being.

  24. Leaving – I'm perfectly fine in the Republic of Kalifornia.  ;)

  25. Middle/Jeff – My brother watches 90-day fiance.  I watched a couple and found them to be a very depressing view of the human condition – it made me very sad. 

    Maddie used to shrug her shoulders and say "whatever" when I told her there weren't any dragons so I get your point.  She used to believe they were in England but then we went to England and there were no dragons so apparently they moved to Scotland but we went there on another trip so apparently they now lived around Romania and we didn't go there but then she found out they weren't there at some point and then my daughter explained to me that there was another Earth on the other side of the sun that we couldn't see and that is where the dragons had migrated to.   

    To this day she still has a lot of dragon paraphernalia and I'm not sure she doesn't still sort of believe in the dragon planet but I don't bring it up because I love her.  So you see – I can compromise! 

    Her belief in dragons isn't hurting anyone but, if she decided she couldn't be burned by flames because she believes in dragons and lit fires in the living room – I would have to step in, right?  People can believe what they want unless what they believe becomes a danger to themselves and others – then it is the DUTY of more rational members of society to change their minds.  That's why Conservatives can shrug their shoulders and say "Whatever – go save the planet you idiot" while the Liberals have a hard time saying "Whatever – let's ignore the virus that's doing Trillions of Dollars of damage and killing thousands of people each day" or "Whatever – let's give massive tax breaks to the rich while dismantling the Social Safety Net".  What's the "middle" let's give huge tax breaks and only take food stamps away from some of the children?  

    Speaking of gross incompetence we don't even have time for:  Trump's Bay of Pigs in Venezuela barely gets a mention in US media:

    Details of what exactly transpired are still murky, but the Venezuelan authorities claimed that they captured two men who work for Trump's security team, Luke Denman and Aaron Berry. To prove this, they showed images of their passports to local media, which made the news go viral.

    According to the Associated Press (AP)'s original report about Goudreau's anti-Maduro plot, he had previously been in close contact with representatives of the American government, who shared interest in his regime change vision.

    Although the American government isn't likely to admit any complicity in Goudreau's actions, the AP's original report is convincing enough in making it seem like the U.S. tacitly supported his plans at the very least.

    That just goes to show how much the Trump administration lost control of the situation if one of their reported assets could "go rogue" in such a dramatic way.

    Trump's "Bay of Pigs" moment, however, clearly wasn't thought through all that much and was embarrassingly unprofessional from a military perspective. It's therefore more shameful since it suggests that the U.S. covert regime change operations are nowhere near as effective as they once were.

    The over two trillion U.S. dollars that Trump spent on the military since entering into office wasn't enough to properly train and equip the necessary number of mercenaries to effectively take on the Venezuelan government, which is all the more stunning when remembering how much the U.S. president loves mocking Venezuela for supposedly being "broke" and on the "brink of collapse."

    Yet another major embarrassment for America thanks to our President.  4 more years! 

  26. SKT high for the day 6.66 again, number of the beast! May be a buy signal just like the S&P back in 09.

    I feel like we are getting close to that peak "missed the rally" anxiety in the markets. Selling at the close everyday this week and AH ramp higher has been the routine. Classic exit strategy without tipping off retail.

    3 subjects I stay away from politics, what someone earns, religion. 

  27. Stalking/jeffl – Oooops, as an extreme left liberal I seem to be falling down on the job – haven't followed you down the street even once. ummm, what's your address again? Would you mind popping outdoors for a bit, preferably keeping 6 feet away from anyone you happen to see who might be sort of following you?

  28. "go save the planet you idiot"  Fine, now get the F*ck out of our way, We have much work to do…. :(

  29. Yeah Kustomz, two out of three don't affect me, but the third one is unavoidable.


    I think it takes brass to have money and care/engage, but in the end, you'll feel better about yourself.

  30. CMG apparently going to earn more now that before the virus?

    back to ATH

  31. Phil, I dumped an asset and moved 100K to TDA and want to do something less risky than futures with it, do you have any new portfolios coming soon or should I just cherry pick your favorites from the April Portfolio Review and make some plays?

  32. Its not just Trump

    'Just for the camera?': Jimmy Kimmel deletes viral video that shows Pence delivering empty PPE boxes


  33. Phil/SIG

    more than 20% up today. any special news?

    thanks and regards

  34. Phil – I remember when you described bitcoin as art. It's really everything, from oil contracts, to the Fake News stock market we currently are witnessing to currency itself. It's all a collective figment of the human imagination.

  35. Fox, Trump, Unity -

    Trump is indeed a problem, but the main reason he is still a problem is that when he was impeached, 90% or more of Republican voters didn't want him removed from office. I think that is because those voters voluntarily tune in to Fox News, and believe what they hear. There is no shortage of good news outlets, but Republicans often choose Fox instead. There is no shortage of documentation on the depth and breadth of Fox's misleading statements. My favorite instance, from a long time ago, was Jon Stewarts' "Fox News: 50 lies".

    There are, of course, many more examples. Here's a more recent example from Trevor Noah about Fox's treatment of the coronavirus pandemic.

    As long as people continue to pay attention to Fox News, I don't see there being much hope for unity, or good governance.

  36. Ahhh the philstockworld I know and love, good conversation going on right here

  37. Microsoft teams, zoom, and others:

    MAKE THE MICROPHONE MUTE BUTTON HUGE AND FRONT AND CENTER. Otherwise children conferences are a disaster. Microsoft teams actually MARKETS THIS PRODUCT to elementary schools. And the "mute" button looks like an Excel tool you have to go hunt for. Put much more genius than I can say it: I don't get it

    I mean seriously people. WTF. MSFT a trillion dollar company?

  38. Back to the good old days, buy lots of TNA at 2pm for the stick, I'm in…

    • LTP is cruisin' up 32.9% ($664,528) even though we cashed out a bit.
    • STP has a ton of hedges and is still up 442.7% at $542,707, so nothing to complain about with our mix, back at our $1.2M high.  

    • Butterfly Portfolio $449,166 is up 124.6%  – up about 10% since our last review.
    • Dividend Portfolio still sucking at $155,835 – down 22.1% but that's up $20,000 since last review.  Remember – we're in it for the dividends, not the gains!  
    • Earnings Portfolio stuck at 85.5% ($185,508), we are too neutral there but plenty of cash so we'll look for more plays.  Was $179,785 so not wrong way but too boring…
    • Future is Now Portfolioo up 26.5% at $126,465 and that's a lovely $19,000 gain for the month thanks to BYND flying higher.
    • Hemp Boca is up 13.2% at $56,615 – yawn…
    • Money Talk Portfolio not very exciting either at $104,663 – up 4.7% but it was down 14.3% so 20% gain since our last review – we'll take it!

    CMG/Coulter – I hope not, we're pretty short in the STP.

    Portfolios/Mr M – Well we have reviews next week so I'd suggest looking at the ones I pick as "good for a new trade" – there's always quite a few you can start with.

    Pence/QC – That's a good line:

    "Mike Pence pretending to carry empty boxes of PPEs into a hospital is the perfect metaphor for who he is and what he's doing: A big box of nothing delivering another box of nothing," Kimmel said during the monologue on his show "Jimmy Kimmel Live!" Thursday night.

    In it, Pence is told boxes in a van are empty. Pence, caught at low volume in the video, responds: "Well can I carry the empty ones? Just for the cameras?" 

    Wow, we are so tired that we can't even be bothered to be outraged anymore.

    SIG/Pat – No particular news but that's what happens when a stock is insanely undervalued – any rumor can do it.

    Dividend Portfolio Review

    SIG – Weddings delayed, no time to get engaged and who can even go to the mall for a gift?  Of course this is a disaster for SIG.  On March 26th, Q4 earnings were a nice beat, however at $3.67/share, which was pretty much the whole year but, considering you can buy the stock for $7.50 – I think they'll be fund to own when the economy re-opens.  We did just double down at $8.20 and I'm very tempted to do it again and average $10 on 4,000 shares but we already have the $13 puts at $4.70 for net $8.30 so let's roll those at $7.95 ($7,950) to 20 of the $8 puts at $3.80 ($7,600) and see how that plays out for now.  Earnings June 4th(ish) – I love this as a new trade, by the way. 

    See how that works, Mr M?  wink

    For BDC:

    Pop art businesswoman with big golden bitcoin coin

    Fox/Saguaro – It's funny as we used to see the fake news in Russia but you always imagined that the fake news couldn't exist right beside the real news – yet it does!  People would rather be lied to…

    TNA/MrM – We're hitting 4M infections next week – no longs for me!

    Is that a "V" for VICTORY?  

    Looks totally under control to me – let's all go to a sports stadium!

    At least the US has flattened the curve – right Fox fans?

    That's 4% of the World's population with 32% of the World's cases – and we're not even testing!  

    USA! USA! USA!!!

    See, I'm meeting in the middle…

  39. From the fake news department at the WaPo:

    Sure, hundreds of thousands of Americans may die. But suck it up, America: We’ve got to get the economy going.

    Let’s take a look around:

    • “There’ll be more death” as we resume economic activity, says President Trump, but "we have to get our country back.”
    • The White House may pursue a strategy of lying about the number of Americans dying, plus spreading conspiracy theories so people disbelieve what they hear about the death toll. “A senior administration official said he expects the president to begin publicly questioning the death toll as it closes in on his predictions for the final death count and damages him politically,” reports Axios.
    • According to the Associated Press, “The Trump administration has shelved a document created by the nation’s top disease investigators with step-by-step advice to local authorities on how and when to reopen restaurants and other public places during the still-raging coronavirus outbreak." The administration apparently wants states to figure out how to do this largely on their own while Trump encourages them to remove lockdown orders whether they are prepared or not.
    • The states rushing to reopen do not meet even the modest guidelines the Trump White House issued about when it would be safe to do so.
    • Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey (R), who is eager to lift his state’s lockdown order, “shut down the work of academic experts predicting the peak of the state’s coronavirus outbreak was still about two weeks away.” Better just not to know how many people are going to die.
    • The Ohio government is asking employers to report workers who refuse to return to work because of safety concerns so the state can take away their unemployment benefits.
    • Iowa issued a similar warning to workers: Risk your life or lose your benefits.
    • Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) said on a secretly recorded phone call that he was well aware that reopening businesses now would increase coronavirus transmissions. “The fact of the matter is, pretty much every scientific and medical report shows that whenever you have a reopening … that it actually will lead to an increase in spread.” But he’s opening up the state anyway.
    • Trump signed an executive order declaring meatpacking plants “critical infrastructure” so that they stay open, even though there are now 10,000 covid-19 cases associated with such plants; workers at 170 facilities in 29 states have tested positive. But the president is getting personally involved to make sure there are enough burgers at Wendy’s.

    When you point out how insane it is to be rushing headlong into a resumption of economic and social activity while the virus continues to spread and about 2,000 Americans die from it every day, you’re likely to be told that you’re trivializing the suffering of those who have lost their incomes or their businesses.

    But the problem is that we can’t decide to allow huge numbers of Americans to die in order to save the economy, because allowing huge numbers of Americans to die is exactly what will prevent us from being able to save the economy.

    If we throw open the doors of every business, we’ll almost certainly see a second wave of infections — one that could be even worse than what we’re experiencing now — and then we’ll just have to close down all over again.

    It’s almost impossible to overstate what an appalling dereliction of duty it is that the Trump administration, having screwed up its pandemic response so spectacularly, is now essentially washing its hands of the whole effort, no longer bothering to try to enact a coordinated nationwide testing and tracing system, and just telling everyone to get back to work.

    We’re moving toward an utterly horrifying partisan divide, in which Democrats want to contain the virus so that we’re able to get the economy back on its feet, while Republicans decide that the only brave and manly thing to do is to stop worrying about the virus and “get back to normal” immediately, no matter how many Americans it kills. In fact, we may soon reach the point where dismissing all those deaths is precisely how you show your loyalty to Trump.

    The Post’s View: Trump is ignoring his former covid-19 strategy. The consequences could be tragic.

    Dana Milbank: Trump calls the pandemic ‘worse than Pearl Harbor’ — and declares a cease-fire


    Wow, that does make me feel better….

  40. TNA – puts that should be.

  41. Phil/SIG,

    I have 10 naked calls Jan 2021 strike 8 at 2.05. I was thinking of selling short term calls to take advantage of this move up…what would you suggest to?


  42. In and out of TNA with 2% gain in an hour, I learned this stick thing from someone on the board years ago that's all he played, you other old-timers likely remember him. Still works.

  43. One more reason to keep infection number low:

    The immediate effects of the disease are devastating.But what has confronted doctors and patients alike since American hospitals began to fill up in March has been another, deeply sobering prospect: that of long-term, maybe permanent organ damage among those who contract severe COVID-19 infections.

    “If you come out of COVID, you may actually realize or find out that you’re on dialysis, and that you have organ failure, and that it may not come back,” Dr. Paul T. Conway, chair of policy and global affairs and immediate past president of the American Association of Kidney Patients, told TPM. “It’s a highly frightening prospect.”

    You build herd immunity but add to people who need transplants and dialysis! Not a great outcome for healthcare costs.

  44. TNA/Randers – That makes more sense.  

    SIG/Pat – It's not much of a move up to sell against yet.  The 2021 $8s are already $5 so up 150% and the 2022 $8 ($6)/$13 ($4.50) bull call spread is just $1.50 so I'd buy those and put $3.50 back in your pocket to lock in a 75% gain and you still have $3.50 upside potential on that spread.  

    Reasons/StJ – It's simply foolish to do anything until we have more facts.  We've take all of 6 weeks before giving up on science and just "going for it" with the re-opening.  MADNESS!!!

    Have a great weekend folks!

    - Phil

  45. The Bug/StJ – yeah, it likely has something to do with this blood clotting problem. That's likely been causing the "happy hypoxia", the MIs, and the strokes, too. Put your covid19 patients on warfarin, please.

  46. Mocha you were right, TNA calls would have been better today I think the trick is to take a peek at the end of day market close orders and figure out the imbalance. Darned if I remember where those are published. Us "old"-sometimers can not remember everything!

    Time to chillax on the sun porch with a Boozy Pineapple whip.

    Here is to everyone's health!

  47. mrmocha/stick – who was it?

    COVID 10x data in the US (days between order of magnitude increase): 1000 cases (7 days, from 100), 10k (9), 100k (8), 1M (31). This is pretty good news and I hope to see we're flattening big time. Hopefully 10M is never even reached. This data is subject to the amount of testing being done, though I'd argue that would make the earlier tiers jump up faster if there'd been more testing. The actual infection rate may be 10X higher than the reported rate. So we may have 10M+ infections, when counting asymptomatic folks and people that either don't want to, or cannot, get a test. The virus may be slowing simply because less people are completely vulnerable to it (no immunity, as opposed to people who've had it and at least have some immunity). 

    Politics: now that we've got lots and lots of lots of data we can pour over I think I can attempt to explain the nature of the incumbent party response. When you look at infections, even per capita, ranked from high to low, it's eerily a lot of blue states. And then inside those states it's mostly in cities (and city-based hot-spots in red states too, like Louisiana). It's callous (and politics is always so), but the Reds could care less if bunch of Blues die in cities, and let's be honest you and I all know, without a doubt, this is how they feel (because it's the easiest explanation how they are dealing with it). If anything, they want more of it; less Blue votes = Power. This virus, like the Spanish flue with it's high transmissibility, will eventually get to everyone, but it hasn't yet, in places like WY with a paltry 7 deaths and 15 per 1M residents, they are simply not in the same boat as NYC with 17000 cases per 1M and 1300 deaths (and that's the whole state, so probably much higher in NYC). So Trump et. al. govern 100% to the base and to hell with the rest of us, which is the only way trump "governs," if I can even use that term.

    Phil/BTC – thank you for that most beautiful pic. PS – Can we have spellcheck now?

  48. That was funny Phil – made me laugh out loud actually.  Get ready for Phase 1 in Palm Beach County!  Nothing for us in Broward yet.

  49. Malls across America resemble ghost towns despite reopening

  50. POLITICO Playbook: Is anyone really safe?

  51. BDC--I think mrmocha is talking about JRW—I am not sure if I have the correct initials—I play that off and on with SPY—most often works but have got burned because unlike JRW I have held it too long

  52. Snow – bug- what test was used in South Korea and if so effective why not used here or is it used but limited supply or just a screw up?

  53. Tests/pstas – they had several different tests that they cranked out quite quickly. Helped that they had a different corona virus outbreak in 2015, meant that they were prepared. Did I link to this article? Don't remember. Anyway, here it is again.

  54. The Bug/all – so here's how those tests fit into the whole program.

  55. tests/pstas – and to your question, why weren't those tests used here – well, they are, now. My friend intrepid reporter Andy Salmon tells me that Trump called Pres. Moon, wanting tests. Pres. Moon said, well, yeah, but they're obviously not US FDA approved. Trump says "leave that to me", and the next day word came that Korea could start shipping test kits.

    But again, it's not just the test kits that the US needs (although God knows those are needed), it's the whole package.

  56. Snow- thanks for the info. 

  57. It's nice that Trump is now concerned about testing and such since his valet and Pence's secy came down with it (and apparently 8 more in the West Wing). 

    Now the monstrous virus has invaded the Oval Office. Both the president’s valet and a Pence staffer, Katie Miller, the wife of the racist Stephen Miller, who looks like he hasn’t seen daylight in decades, have succumbed. Yet just a few days ago Axios reported that the president and some top aides were questioning the high death toll.

    Nearly 190,000 people were tested for the coronavirus in New York City over the past two weeks, a record number. The increase in testing, crucial for curbing the outbreak, came as Mayor Bill de Blasio announced plans to hire a small army of 1,000 disease detectives to track down the contacts of every infected New Yorker.

    The city is also paying for hotels to house people who cannot quarantine in their cramped apartments, and it may use the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Queens for the same purpose.

    From the State Capitol, Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has established a framework for reopening the state, based on seven concrete, health-related milestones, and he has asked Bill Gates, the restaurateur Danny Meyer, the New York Knicks owner James L. Dolan and dozens of other outside advisers from the upper echelons of New York’s business world to help guide him on how best to restart the economy and, possibly, reimagine public education.

    Still, despite all the plans and initiatives, the reopening of New York City remains a long way off.

    A Sicilian fresco from 1445. In the previous century, the Black Death killed at least a third of Europe’s population.

    According to historians, pandemics typically have two types of endings: the medical, which occurs when the incidence and death rates plummet, and the social, when the epidemic of fear about the disease wanes.

    I love the Times!

    China Reports Flare-Up in Coronavirus Infections Near Russian Border: Live Coverage
    The cluster highlights the challenges of controlling the pandemic. Berlin’s cathedral held its first Sunday services since Germany’s lockdown was lifted.

    The paid leave program passed by Congress in March was supposed to help workers cope with the fallout of the coronavirus pandemic. It has struggled to do so. Many Americans are ineligible, and many more are unaware the benefit even exists, surveys show.

    Patients with mild to moderate Covid-19, the illness caused by the coronavirus, appeared to improve more quickly if they were treated with a three-drug cocktail, compared with a group receiving just a two-drug combination, scientists reported on Friday.

    With vaccines still months, maybe years, into the future, researchers are rushing to determine whether existing drugs can be used to treat the coronavirus. In the United States, only one — remdesivir — has been shown to be effective in speeding recovery.

    In the new study, published in The Lancet, researchers at six public hospitals in Hong Kong and the University of Hong Kong followed 127 adults with Covid-19, including 86 on the three-drug cocktail and 41 in a comparison group.

    Their study was a preliminary Phase 2 trial, intended to see if a treatment works. (It does not determine whether the treatment is better than other options, but there are few other options for the coronavirus.)

    The patients who were started on the cocktail within seven days of having their first symptoms stopped shedding the virus — meaning they were recovering and no longer infectious — earlier than patients in the comparison group, the researchers found.

    In a video posted to YouTube on Monday, a woman animatedly described an unsubstantiated secret plot by global elites like Bill Gates and Dr. Anthony Fauci to use the coronavirus pandemic to profit and grab political power.

    In the 26-minute video, the woman asserted how Dr. Fauci, the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and a leading voice on the coronavirus, had buried her research about how vaccines can damage people’s immune systems. It is those weakened immune systems, she declared, that have made people susceptible to illnesses like Covid-19.

    The video, a scene from a longer dubious documentary called “Plandemic,” was quickly seized upon by anti-vaccinators, the conspiracy group QAnon and activists from the Reopen America movement, generating more than eight million views. And it has turned the woman — Dr. Judy Mikovits, 62, a discredited scientist — into a new star of virus disinformation.

  58. Speaking of warriors (in Meyers video) – We watched 1917 last night – best movie I saw in a long time!  

    It’s the usual action-movie setup — a mission, extraordinary odds, ready-made heroes — but with trenches, barbed wire and a largely faceless threat. Blake jumps on the assignment because his brother is among the troops preparing the assault. Schofield takes orders more reluctantly, having already survived the Battle of the Somme, with its million-plus casualties. The modest difference in attitude between the messengers will vanish, presumably because any real criticism — including any skepticism about this or any war — might impede the movie’s embrace of heroic individualism for the greater good, which here largely translates as vague national struggle and sacrifice.

    What complicates the movie is that it has been created to look like it was made with a single continuous shot. In service of this illusion, the editing has been obscured, though there are instances — an abrupt transition to black, an eruption of thick dust — where the seams almost show. Throughout, the camera remains fluid, its point of view unfixed. At times, it shows you what Blake and Schofield see, though it sometimes moves like another character. Like a silent yet aggressively restless unit member, it rushes before or alongside or behind the messengers as they snake through the mazy trenches and cross into No Man’s Land, the nightmarish expanse between the fronts.

    Having taken film classes in college – I was very impressed, brilliant camera work…

    Speaking of million-plus casualties:

    Happy Mother's Day! 

  59. Wow, remember having fun?

    I was at that show – it was awesome!

  60. This is great if you haven't seen it:

  61. Recent observational study from the New England Journal of Medicine concerning the use of hydroxychloroquine in treating COVID-19 "was not associated with either a greatly lowered or an increased risk of the composite end point of intubation or death."