He lost: Ordidor and the perdedor

Elanel Egot Ordidor is a Filipina citizen working in Taiwan as a caregiver.  Her facebook account used the pseudonym Linn Silawan.  In early April, she posted a profanity laden video on facebook commenting on Philippines dictator…sorry, “president” Rodrigo Duterte and his incompetent handling of the epidemic.

Within days, Duterte’s goons, lackeys and errand runners demanded Ordidor be repatriated to the Philippines, and that she would be charged with “the crime of cyber libel for willful posting of nasty and malevolent materials against President Duterte on Facebook intended to cause hatred”.

When I heard this, my first thought was “What did she say?  Did she incite assassination or call for armed rebellion?”  I haven’t seen the video (it’s in Tagalog, anyway), and none of the commercial “news” media reported what her words contained.

There’s lots more below the fold.

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Loyalty Test: The flu klux klan are like child soldiers

Dr. Bandy Lee is a forensic psychiatrist at the Yale School of Medicine. She makes a compelling argument that the “quarantine protesters” (a/k/a the flu klux klan) are behaving like child soldiers and gang members. They are akin to people trapped in abusive relationships or situations (e.g. Patty Hearst, Stockholm syndrome) and empathizing with their abusers, willing to commit violence on command.

Yale psychiatrist: Lockdown protesters exhibit same psychology as “child soldiers” and “urban gangs”

A Yale psychiatrist has warned that pro-Trump lockdown protesters, who exhibit similar psychology as “child soldiers,” could quickly turn into “armed troops in the streets” if the president loses his re-election bid.

Dr. Bandy X. Lee, a forensic psychiatrist at the Yale School of Medicine, said the armed protests were a natural evolution of the loyalty President Trump demands from his supporters. Many of these protests have evidently been organized by deep-pocketed groups allied with the president.

[. . .]

“Subconsciously, it is a loyalty test for the people,” Lee said. “In Africa, where I did some ethnographic work, child soldiers would be recruited and made to kill a family member to demonstrate their allegiance to the government and not to the family. Similarly, in urban gangs in America, one may be challenged to kill a police officer to prove one’s willingness to uphold gang rules over societal rules.

“When Donald Trump suggests that the virus be taken as a ‘hoax’, that people gather in churches or that people protest for their own sacrifice, he is actually testing people’s loyalty to the ‘laws’ of his mind over the laws of nature, or even impulse for survival. The more he abuses them, the greater their devotion grows, since the psychological cost of admitting their mistake is ever higher — and so it becomes easier to dig a well of unreality than to see the obvious truth.

And quite capable of repeating what they just did in Kentucky – but next time, killing anyone who resists.  Or just killing people for fun, to exert (white) power.

Birx, That Blood Won’t Come Off

Anthony Fauci has continuously tiptoed around Cheetolini, only half doing his job to avoid being fired.  But in late March, Deborah Birx went full Lysenko, appearing on the “christian broadcasting service” to praise Cheetolini as “attentive to scientific literature and details”. She signed on and made herself party to Cheetolini’s empty headed ideas.  (I refuse to address Fauci or Birx as “doctor” any longer after they forfeited the honorific title.)

Quoting from Vox, March 27, 2020.  The strikeout is mine.

Deborah Birx praised Trump as attentive to scientific literature and details. Nope.

Dr. Deborah Birx, a respected physician and experienced diplomat who seemingly serves as a voice of reason in her role as coordinator of the White House’s coronavirus task force, raised a lot of eyebrows on Thursday with her effusive praise of President Donald Trump as “attentive to the scientific literature and the details” during an interview with the Christian Broadcasting Network.

“He’s been so attentive to the scientific literature and the details and the data,” Birx said. “I think his ability to analyze and integrate data that comes out of his long history in business has really been a real benefit during these discussions about medical issues.”

She is a careerist and sought to maintain her position in the halls of power.  And did it in the worst way possible, stroking the ego of a 70 year old infant with a gun in his hand.

Yesterday, Cheetolini spews his stupidest ideas yet about using ultraviolet light and lethal chemicals.  He claims they are her ideas, that she is planning to test them, making her responsible and not him when stupid people try these things and start dying.

In the video below, starting at 30 seconds, watch her face turn and her bodily reaction as she squirms in the seat, wishing she could disappear.  She knows full well the consequences of what he is saying.  People will die, and she will be blamed while he walks away clean.

I have lost all ability to feel empathy for Birx and her inevitable fate.  She knew what she was signing on for and became a participant instead of saying no.

The right thing to do now, the only way she can save herself morally, is to go public and retract everything he said and call for his removal.  But she won’t, because it would ruin her career.

Play On: This is getting surreal

(NB: Excuse the flag waving here, especially since I’m not a citizen.)

As mentioned before, Taiwan’s CPBL season is underway.  The games are in empty stadiums for the time being because of social distancing (likely to be 2020’s “word of the year”).  Several teams have placed cardboard cut outs, robot drummers and played music during the games to give the feeling of having crowds until the fans are allowed in.

Games are not being broadcast internationally on TV as I thought, but online viewing is available.  Richard Wang (a bilingual Taiwanese citizen) and Wayne McNeil (a 20 resident who speaks Mandarin) normally broadcast in Mandarin, but are now also calling games in English.  The Twitter feed is up to 3.6 million in the US alone.  Games may be on at 3-6AM in the US, but when you’ve got nothing else to do or watch….  Even the SBL’s championship series (game three on Friday) is being shown in other countries.

Sports are only a tiny part of the impact the country and government are having.  Sixteen million surgical masks and other medical equipment exported to various countries go a long way (e.g. ventilators)Machines to manufacture masks will be exported in the summerA Polish government charter flight landed today to pick up medical supplies.  Unfortunately, the plane landed two hours late because China refused to allow the plane to fly through their airspace, forcing it to fly across Thailand and Vietnam.  More below the fold.

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Worshipped And Disposed Of: It’s not just for the military

Deborah Gatewood was a nurse at the Farmington Hills hospital in Detroit. In March, while treating patients suffering from COVID-19, she developed a cough and symptoms.  Her employer sent her home.

Gatewood asked the hospital for a test and treatment.  The hospital refused her both, and told to her leave.  They left to die in her home, putting her family at risk.

Beaumont worker turned away 4 times with COVID-19 symptoms before dying

For 31 years – Deborah Gatewood wore the Beaumont badge doing blood draws at the Farmington Hills hospital.

So, in the third week of March when she started coughing with a fever it is where she turned for help.

“They sent her home saying you are showing signs of COVID,” said Kaila Corrothers, her daughter. “So they were confirming that she most likely had COVID, but they did not test her.”

Her daughter, Kaila marked in a calendar the days her mom went to ER. She says her mom was sent home four times – with cough medicine and told to rest. Each time, the fever got higher and the symptoms worse.

Her own hospital employer kicked her onto the street and denied her medical care.  “Essential workers” in the US are treated just the military:

  • Empty platitudes and phony hero worship
  • Insufficient equipment to do the job
  • Underpaid and overworked while profiteers get rich
  • Left to die and abandoned when no longer useful to the machine


I Laughed: “missing american leadership”

An {*ahem*} “writer” for the New York Timid newspaper posted one of the most laughable first few paragraphs I have seen in a long time. Who would swallop this besides those who believe in “american exceptionalism”?  The “writer” clearly sought out the only Europeans who tow the US line.

‘Sadness’ and Disbelief From a World Missing American Leadership

As images of America’s overwhelmed hospital wards and snaking jobless lines have flickered across the world, people on the European side of the Atlantic are looking at the richest and most powerful nation in the world with disbelief.

“When people see these pictures of New York City they say, ‘How can this happen? How is this possible?’” said Henrik Enderlein, president of the Berlin-based Hertie School, a university focused on public policy. “We are all stunned. Look at the jobless lines. Twenty-two million,” he added.

“I feel a desperate sadness,” said Timothy Garton Ash, a professor of European history at Oxford University and a lifelong and ardent Atlanticist.

The US has been silenced and its colonial wars for oil brought to a standstill. Nobody is complaining except for the profiteers and fanboys.

With any luck, that persistent US veto that protects Israel will cease to exist.

Will Anyone Notice: Earth Day during the pandemic

After September 11, 2001, airplanes did not fly over the US for three days.  Given the opportunity to do a large scale experiment on the cheap, environmental and climate scientists jumped at the chance to measure the difference in air pollution with no planes in the sky.  There was an immediate effect, a reduction in air pollution and the cleanest skies in decades.

Empty skies after 9/11 set the stage for an unlikely climate change experiment

On the morning of September 11, 2001, officials at the U.S. national air control centre couldn’t make out what was happening, at first. [. . .] Officials at the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration did the only thing they could think of to try to control the situation: ordering every aircraft in U.S. airspace, about 4,000 of them, to land somewhere, anywhere, immediately.

[. . .]

“I remember walking to and from my office (in the days after the attacks) and thinking how incredibly clear the skies were,” Andrew Carleton, a geographer at Pennsylvania State University, later wrote.

About a year after the attacks, Carleton, David Travis, a geographer at the University of Wisconsin, and another colleague argued in a paper that thin clouds created by contrails reduce the range of temperatures. By contributing to cloud cover during the day, they reflect solar energy that would otherwise have reached the earth’s surface. At night, they trap warmth that would otherwise have escaped.

The effect during the three days that flights were grounded was strongest in populated regions where air traffic was normally densest. The increase in range came to about two degrees Celsius.

A change of two degrees celsius in just three days.  Imagine what the effect will be when roughly 90% of all air traffic worldwide stops, when more than two thirds of private car use ceases for months or even a year.  In barely one month of quarantine over most of the world, there has already been a noticeable environmental impact.  More below the fold.

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An Account Told: Life inside a plastic bubble

Schoko” is the pseudonym for a 30-something Taiwanese woman who was quarantined in hospital with COVID-19.  In an interview she told her experience to Focus Taiwan, describing the conditions, how she was treated, and how the disease affected her.

The most surreal part is when she describes the lost of smell and taste, sounding reminiscent of people who lost their sense of smell to hydrogen sulphide.  I was also irked to read how landlords evicted people who had tested positive.  What does that accomplish other than to endanger people?

Recovered COVID-19 patient describes trip to ‘alien planet’ and back

Within an hour of being informed on March 21 that she had tested positive for the COVID-19 coronavirus disease, Schoko was in an ambulance on her way to the hospital, carrying some hastily packed clothes, a boxed lunch, and a cup of bubble tea.

It was her first trip in an ambulance and the first time she was being hospitalized, she told CNA in a phone interview.

“I felt like I was in a spaceship, being transported to an alien planet,” said Schoko, a Taiwanese in her 30s, who asked to withhold her proper name.

When she arrived at the hospital in New Taipei, she was allowed to walk on her own to a negative pressure isolation room, followed by two cleaners in full protective gear, disinfecting everything in her wake.

That walk was only the first step on a journey that would take 22 days before Schoko could emerge from her “alien planet.”

Americans will no doubt be shocked by the bill she had to pay for her treatment.

Immediately Punished: The consequences were swift

As mentioned yesterday, sailors from one of Taiwan’s military vessels were found to have COVID-19 and were travelling around Taiwan, creating hotspots and exposing thousands of people.  I unknowingly went to one after they had been there (Taipei Main Station) but was likely not exposed.

Two admirals removed from posts over COVID-19 infections on ship

Taipei, April 21 (CNA) Two Navy admirals have been removed from their posts pending further investigation into responsibility for a cluster COVID-19 coronavirus infection on a naval ship that has so far left 27 people infected with the virus, the nation’s defense chief announced Tuesday.

Commander of Republic of China Naval Fleet Command Vice Admiral Kao Chia-pin (高嘉濱) and Rear Admiral Chen Tao-hui (陳道輝), head of the ROC Navy’s Friendship fleet, are being punished for negligence that resulted in the cluster infections on a vessel that was part of a flotilla that visited the Pacific island of Palau, announced Defense Minister Yen De-fa (嚴德發).

They are deemed to be responsible for the infections, as they had failed to follow regulations in carrying out pandemic prevention measures on the three-ship-flotilla that visited Palau last month, according to Yen.

Some of the crew members did not wear surgical face masks at all times during the visit to Palau. Also, the fleet commander, Chen, already knew that a number of crewmen had developed fever during the month-long trip but did not report to his superiors as he should have, Yen said.

The admirals didn’t follow protocols, and they didn’t notify their superiors?  Unlike Crozier in the US navy, these two most certainly are at fault.  Taiwan’s number of cases spiked again when it didn’t need to.  It’s inexcusable.

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Final thought:

It’s unlikely I was exposed.  The government’s monitoring system would have sent me a text message if I were.  Some people object to the government’s tracking of everyone, worried that it may not be shut off after the crisis is over.  I don’t like it either, but it’s how they have kept the situation under control.  Besides, you can always go out without your phone if you don’t want to be tracked.

Sit and Watch: The History Guy talks about virology

I mentioned The History Guy before because his fifteen minute videos are brief but informative and packed with detail. He doesn’t shy away from pointing fingers nor protects sacred cows.

The first minute of his latest video is timely, opening with the story of Edward Jenner using cowpox to protect against smallpox, and how it began virology and vaccinations.

Incompetence Shown: The CDC’s COVID-19 test kits were tainted

As if there weren’t enough problems in the US with COVID-19 (e.g. idiots ignoring quarantine, Cheetolini’s cutbacks and obsession with money), now there’s incompetence at the CDC.  The “COVID-19 tests” made by the CDC were tainted with COVID-19. Every single one of them is worthless, and all the tests done in February and March will have to be redone. Who knows how many weeks and lives are lost because of this?

CDC’s failed coronavirus tests were tainted with coronavirus, feds confirm

As the new coronavirus took root across America, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention sent states tainted test kits in early February that were themselves seeded with the virus, federal officials have confirmed.

The contamination made the tests uninterpretable, and—because testing is crucial for containment efforts—it lost the country invaluable time to get ahead of the advancing pandemic.

The CDC had been vague about what went wrong with the tests, initially only saying that “a problem in the manufacturing of one of the reagents” had led to the failure. Subsequent reporting suggested that the problem was with a negative control—that is, a part of the test meant to be free of any trace of the coronavirus as a critical reference for confirming that the test was working properly overall.

This isn’t the only incompetence of the day to report.  More below. . . .

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Math Rules: A simpler Quadratic Equation

Loh Po-Shen is a graduate of California Institute of Technology and an associate professor at Carnegie Mellon University.

In October 2019, Loh published a new way to solve quadratic equations.  It is breathtakingly simple and easy to understand, and much faster in producing solutions.  And yet if it so simple, why has it not been put together since Euclid first discovered quadratic equations?  Loh searched extensively and found no other mathematicians had done this.  (I said put together and not discovered because the techniques he uses are already known.)

Loh’s method involves simple distributive mathematics and pythagorean triples, though he does not used the latter term in this video.  In his final example, he shows how his method produces the traditional quadratic equation (-b +/- (b^2-4ac))/2a.  As a fan of and dabbler in number theory, this is staggeringly beautiful.

Science Alert reported on this as well.  The page contains another video explaining the technique.

Propagandists Lie: Two of Beijing’s sock puppets in Washington

In the past few weeks, Cheetolimi has interacted with two “journalists”, Wang You-you and Chang Ching-yi.  Neither of whom is a journalist, they are both stooges and lackeys working for arms of the Beijing government.

The Nation describes Wang You-you as a “reporter from Hong Kong”, but that’s not the whole story.  Her employer is Phoenix Television, which is technically a “private company”.  But Phoenix TV is owned and founded by Liu Changle (劉長樂), a former commander of the “people’s liberation army”.  He was a commander in the 40th group army, one of the gangs of criminals that perpetrated the mass murders at Tiananmen Square in 1989 (original Mandarin text). China Central Television (the largest TV company in the PRC, and owned by the government) owns 10% of Phoenix TV.

Chang Ching-yi is the “reporter” who claimed to be from Taiwan when challenge by Cheetolini on April 9th.  He may have been born here and holds a passport, but his loyalties are with Beijing.  He currently works Shanghai Media Group and used to work for Phoenix TV.

Taiwan’s Mainland Affairs Council plans to penalize Chang for violating the law.  The fine could range from NT$100,000 to NT$500,000 (US$3,300-$16,600).  Personally, I’d rather they revoke his citizenship or try him for treason and sentence him to prison.

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Interestingly, Radio and Television Hong Kong (RTHK) is government funded like the BBC, CBC, NHK, or DW, but is independent of the Hong Kong governmentJournalist Yvonne Tong, who questioned WHO mouthpiece Bruce Aylward in an embarrassing video, works for RTHK.