October COVID Surprise, Part Deaux [UPDATE-4]

Rayne’s original October Surprise post is getting very top heavy in the number of comments. There are ongoing revelations, including KellyAnne and Bill Stepian now being COVID positive. There are going to be more because the Trump Administration continues to be a walking and talking superspreader.

At any rate, a new thread is needed. And Rayne and/or Marcy may add to it later (heck, I may even add more content later), but a new stub was needed.

So bring all yer COVID talk here.

~ ~ ~

UPDATE-1 — 10:10 A.M. —

Hey. Rayne here, adding to bmaz’s overflow post. Recall my concern about the timeline of events from my previous October Surprise post?

This medical professional has similar concerns:

An M.D. and former public health official can’t make sense of the timeline based on the information given to the public. I don’t agree with her that we need to know exactly what an oximeter says about Trump’s condition, but we do need to know at what point Trump is in the expected course of COVID-19. We have a right to know how close we are to a transition of authority to VP Pence, temporary or otherwise.

IMO — and I am not a doctor — Trump had to have been sicker than we’ve been told to be given an experimental therapy yesterday. (Frankly, we can’t be certain he didn’t receive the antibody infusion on Wednesday based on what has been reported.) He had to have been sicker earlier than we’ve been told, likely at the debate on Tuesday night, posing a risk to Biden and to every person in the venue with whom Trump came in contact.

Apart from the malignant handling of the Barrett super spreader event in the Rose Garden this past weekend, Trump’s disclosures about his illness is wholly disqualifying for re-election. He is failing to communicate a national security risk we can all see unfolding before us after failing to protect national security at the Barrett event.

He couldn’t even be bothered to ensure Barrett’s children were protected when Barrett herself failed to do so by either leaving them at home or making them wear masks.

Most community members at this site wouldn’t trust Trump with their health or their kids. We don’t need yet another Justice who can’t protect ours let alone hers or her children.

Additional updates will appear here at the bottom of this post.

~ ~ ~

UPDATE-2 — 12:10 P.M. —

Rayne here with the next update.

Trump’s physician Dr. Sean Conley gave an update on Trump’s condition. The presser was scheduled for 11:00 a.m. ET and didn’t start until nearly 40 minutes later. Make of that what you will.

Video of the presser is linked in the tweet above but it’s via Fox News. Fuck them. See the video link in this tweet:

The oxygen issue isn’t going to go away. If he was on oxygen his O2 levels were low; at that point the public should have been told about Trump’s condition because it could have gone (may yet go) south rapidly, requiring sedation and ventilation. Just too hedgy about this:

But the big takeaway from today’s presser: Trump may have been hiding his COVID-positive status.

Conley said Trump was 72 hours post-diagnosis — that’s +72 hours to testing, ++72 hours to whatever triggered the testing.

When was Trump tested? When did Trump first have symptoms? Did he go to the debate with symptoms and test results pending? Did he already know he was sick, exposing everyone including Biden?

Meanwhile, the Republicans’ Red Wedding Massacre continues. Chris Christie has now disclosed his COVID positive status; he’d helped prepare Trump for the debate and he’d attendend the Barrett super spreader event.

I want to know which GOP members of congress were on Air Force One:

It’d be nice for the public to know who to avoid at campaign events, you know? It’d also be nice to know if COVID-positive Sen. Ron Johnson was one of them, though he says he flew to D.C. on the 29th.

Heaven help all the support people around these careless and indifferent Republican motherfuckers — from the pilot and crew on Air Force One and Marine One, to the wait staff at the Barrett super spreader event.

Heaven help even these ethically-deficient White House staffers who are terrified and should quit for their safety and that of their friends and family (open pic link).

Additional updates will appear here at the bottom of this post.

~ ~ ~

UPDATE-3 — 1:40 P.M. —

Rayne here yet again (yes, I have no life…).

Immediately following the presser with Trump’s physician, there was an off-the-record update with White House press pool in which the anonymous source said,

The source has now been identified as White House Chief of Staff Mark Meadows:

So…not good, which matches the seriousness necessitating infusion with antibody therapy and then remdesivir.

One of our community members, pdaly, noted some missing specificity in journalists’ questions to Dr. Conley which might have offered far more detail about Trump’s condition:

The doctor mentioned Trump’s oxygen saturation is 96% (on room air, implied, if not receiving supplemental oxygen). The reporters could ask if that reading is “at rest” or “with activity.”

The follow up question could be: “What is Trump’s O2 saturation with ambulation?”

If there is no reading, why not? Is he bedridden? Or does he desaturate with exertion?

One other big tell, in my opinion: the lack of a proof-of-life video. Trump, who is a camera hog and lives for TV ratings, couldn’t possibly have missed an opportunity to share a short video clip from within Walter Reed in which he smiles and waves to his base, giving them a thumb’s up.

Unless he’s far sicker than we are being told even by Meadows in an off-the-record update.

It’d certainly explain Trump’s dearth of tweeting today.

Additional updates will appear here at the bottom of this post.

~ ~ ~

UPDATE-4 — 7:50 P.M. —

Hey, it’s Rayne again, with yet another update.

Looks like somebody was worried we’d miss his sorry ass mooching our tax dollars on the golf course. More likely Trump didn’t want to sound weak after his chief of staff Mark Meadows was caught on audio and video earlier.

Rudy Giuliani gave a statement for him after a 2:30 p.m. phone call with Trump but it wasn’t enough — too many people thinking it sounded like more of Rudy’s smarmy bullshit.

So Trump sat down and gave a proof-of-life video — not embedding it here, only giving you a link.

To me he sounds a little breathless for somebody used to rambling at full volume for an hour behind a podium at rallies.

He’s still full of shit, exaggerating what he’s doing in the hospital as if he’s taking it on for everyone around the world — talk about a narcissistic messiah complex — but he manages to choke out four minutes of happy talk.

He may literally be a “happy hypoxic,” too, since we don’t know if he’s been on oxygen today or not.

His color is bad but then he’s addicted to wearing foundation. He also looks like he’s lost weight; perhaps he’s lost his sense of taste and smell which are common enough symptoms of COVID, making food and beverages less appealing.

But of course he’s lied to us so goddamned much over the last 4-plus years it’s hard to believe this is a straight-up honest update. I’m skeptical of the timing and location because the backdrop doesn’t match anything in the photos of the Presidential Suite at Walter Reed.

We’re supposed to believe a small crew of a couple people with a mic and camera couldn’t have shot this four-minute clip in the Presidential Suite?*

Like I said, he’s lied so much it’s hard to believe anything he says let alone anything we see in which he appears.

Doesn’t help matters that there are noticeable, um, hiccups. Holly Figueroa O’Reilly pointed to one:

Did they edit out a mistake? Did they cut out a cough? Or was this simply a dystonic jerk of his shoulders we’ve seen frequently when he’s speaking at podiums, likely related to whatever neurological problem also causes his right foot to drag and his speech to be sporadically garbled?

* Note: Apparently USA Today published an article explaining the photos making the rounds today of Walter Reed’s Presidential Suite are from 2007. That said, we still have little information about when/where/how the proof-of-life video was recorded.

Additional updates will appear here at the bottom of this post.

~ ~ ~

367 replies
  1. CD54 says:

    Surely, “DON’T CALL ME SHIRLEY!” excellent genes he-man Donnie will laugh off weak hoax virus much more manly way than girly woman Angela Merkel — anything else is plot by Deep State american fake plots for to tarnish manly Trump he-man manliness!



  2. Beretania says:

    Trump has denied the danger of Covid-19 fairly consistently since it was first announced. Now he has gone to Walter Reed and admitted he has it. Why? Why didn’t he deny he had it, and pretend it was something else? This makes no sense, unless he is very ill, has known he has had it for awhile, and knows many more who have had contact with him in the last week and so also have had it. It’s all very strange. I assume the worst. The president is a con man, idiot. This is not three dimensional chess, it is tic tac toe with a blindfold on. He has succumbed to the consequences of not doing what he ridiculed Biden for this past Tuesday — wearing a mask. And so has he condemned everyone who trusted him to the same grisly gamble — can I survive Coid-19. Many of them can, but can the obese out of shape 74 year old male President. And if he cannot, where are those, who believed like his cult-like followers that he was superman, going to find themselves.

    • bmaz says:

      Trump is going to have the best care humanly possible, despite himself. So he will probably come out okay. Unlikely there are not some lingering effects in a guy that is morbidly obese and has other factors too, but hard to imagine him not pulling through and then bragging about it because he will always be Trump.

      • Tom says:

        Like John Wayne after his successful lung surgery in 1964, Trump will be able to boast: “I licked the Big C.” But COVID-19 not cancer.

        • bmaz says:

          No, it is not. Similarities in that it may raise its ugly head again in your body, but harder to really track, especially this early.

          • Raven Eye says:

            Those long term — and still not fully understood — effects may be the more significant Covid impact. The world will be dealing with those long term effects for the rest of the century.

            Countries with the most effective health care systems will have an advantage, and that includes an advantage in the world economy.

            If MAGA was more than a bumper sticker, it would mean that the administration was looking ahead to see how this country would be positioned in the global economy when the expanding infection was controlled and suppressed.

            • harpie says:

              And some very aggressive adversaries all around the world are just licking their chops to get a bite of US.

              For them, the man who lied, cheated and stole his way into the White House is the gift that just keeps on giving.

            • bmaz says:

              Raven Eye – Yes. Can other countries blow past the US? Maybe not, but they can sure make us look stupid. Especially on healthcare. And that is well earned.

              • Rugger9 says:

                It’s mainly because we send massive amounts of money into the health insurance “industry” for even the basic care, which is something only the US does out of the top 80 or so economies. All you have to do is look at the paycheck for how much you and your employer pay for organizations that do nothing value-added in terms of medical care.

              • Raven Eye says:

                Yeah…I don’t think that any country is going to knock one out of the park at our expense, but one of the few things that Trump has worked hard on is diminishing the U.S. world presence and effectiveness in diplomacy and trade. Those frayed edges are where we get nibbled by the ducks. Two of the biggest economic ducks in the pond are the EU and China.

                I’m not sure if the EU can get their little ducks lined up in a row. They are an organization that falls short of being a confederation, and it would be difficult to for them develop a unified strategy in time to come out in force post-pandemic. But that wouldn’t keep Germany from taking a few bites.

                China, on the other hand, is undoubtedly working along those lines. They are very adept at leveraging vacuums, and even nudging vacuums into existence. Widespread nibbling, with the occasional chomp, is certainly not out of the question, with good intelligence finding the tastiest bits, as well as the not-so-tasty bits that are just too good to ignore.

                I look at the slice of GDP that health care takes as overhead. And if you are bidding on a contract, you are always looking for ways to reduce your overhead.

                • John Lehman says:

                  The psychology of international relations, sadly, is burdened by lingering vestiges of historic nationalism, a win/lose 19th century jingoistic shibboleth.

                  “If MAGA was more than a bumper sticker”…in Making America Great Again, we wouldn’t be worrying about national advantages or disadvantages but international “win, win” advantages that strengthen and nurture world development, peace, trade and prosperity. It would be stupid for business people to make wars with their customers. If we as a nation could make strengthening and nurturing international peace and development our primary goal and path we would certainly “Make America Great Again”.

          • Tom says:

            You’re right, bmaz, and I understand your point. The other day my doctor and I were brainstorming ideas as to why my most recent bloodwork had shown a slight decline in my kidney functioning. One of my questions was whether it might possibly be due to me being exposed to COVID-19 without realizing it. My doctor told me she couldn’t say as our knowledge of the virus and its range of effects was still in its infancy, but my lack of symptoms suggested I was COVID-free. Anyway, I’m booked for more bloodwork in a couple of months.

      • Chris.EL says:

        I smell a big NYC/Queens rat all the way out here in California…

        Just read the tweet by Trump announcing — allegedly — he has Covid 19 was his most liked tweet ever.

        Trump is getting a lot of mileage from this statement, convalescing in arguably best medical facility in the US of A, getting best antiviral drug.

        Now has an excuse to bow out of debates, hand reins to Pence, and skedaddle!

        What if the RNC decided to plop Junior on to the ticket???

        They of course arrived late to hopefully skip testing! Trump has been on TV he knows the broadcast windows are tight.

        What better way to get rid of your opponent and a pesky reporter than to subject him to yelling and virus spewing for 90+ minutes?
        …”unless he is very ill, has known he has had it for awhile, and knows many more who have had contact with him in the last week”…

        • Matthew Harris says:

          Occam’s Razor.

          What is more likely: an elderly man who is constantly in contact with other people while ignoring sanitation protocols gets an easily-transmitted disease, or

          A complex charade is being carried out to somehow lift the Republican ticket by removing the president a month before the election?

        • subtropolis says:

          I don’t think that many of those “likes” for that tweet mean what you think they mean. The schadenfreude was thick and heavy.

          • Chris.EL says:

            regarding the tweet likes — totally agree — absolutely occurred to me — but in Trump’s world [a major theme park coming to you soon!] it may not matter, non?

            Just the numbers matter, the bigly social intercourse of attention, on me! Me, me, me!

            This entire scenario just feels contrived, designed to divert attention from something MAJOR.

    • Summertime Blues says:

      Covid-19 was made a political rather than a public health issue. Trump wanted to avoid a narrative that would panic the stock market. He’s frankly stated that was his goal. Pay attention to what he says. He’s either deflecting a narrative he doesn’t like, or creating a pretext for what he wants to do.

      The public health implications have come back to impact him, and the Republican party as infections in the White House, and in congress are on the rise. They are trapped by their own rhetoric, and infections will continue to spread. The political implications are increased uncertainty and its negative impact on our Democracy. The stock market is disconnected from society at large for a variety of reasons including intervention by the Fed, and current trading practices so look for societal instability to be the more immediate outcome.

  3. notjonathon says:

    Anyone notice that of the five Trumps in a row, only Melania was wearing a mask? Perhaps knowledge of infection actually predates the debate*.
    *Debatable whether it can actually be called a debate.

    • harpie says:

      Via Laura Rozen, from yesterday:
      [Brazilian journalist, White House corresponden]
      1:59 AM · Oct 2, 2020

      15 days ago… [link]

      That September 16 tweet says:

      The White House called the journalists from the pool 30 minutes late to get our routine covid test. I was told they were late because

      “It was a very busy morning. We had a couple of positives today

        • harpie says:

          Fast transcript:

          I heard about it this morning. At a very small level. Yes, I heard about it this morning. […] But it’s a small. Last night I heard about it for the first time. And it’s a small number of cases. Maybe it’s not even cases. [asks someone] And it’s not anybody that was near me. [questions] From what I heard a very small number. [to staff] I think you can probably give the number out later on when you find out whatever it might be. One person? [to reporters] It was one person. OK? It was one person. [shrugs] So, not a person that I was associated with. Thank you very much everybody. Thank you. [leaves]

    • Chris.EL says:

      Am I only American that — from time to time — thinks of the other Trump offspring: Barron?

      I know the minor presidential children are supposed to be off limits, but that cannot extend to not being concerned about a minor STUCK in that pressure cooker — maelstrom that is the White House and the Trump family.

      If we take Mary Trump’s book to heart — and I believe we should !!! — the boy is deep in formative years and marinating in this toxic mix of the “Trump family values.” ***ACK***

      A photo of Barron at the White House democratic convention, standing alone, revealed a very tall boy whose body language showed (IMHO) a desire to be elsewhere and unhappiness.

      Don’t think it’s off limits to be concerned, plus what about his health? The Trumps are the ones who put him in the spotlight; didn’t look like he wanted to be there…

      • Epicurus says:

        I think of him, wish him the best, truly. Think the best thing for him would be for Trump to lose the election. The situation reminds me a little of the song “Cat’s in the Cradle”. Hope the situation doesn’t play out the same way as the song

        • ducktree says:

          Barron’s presence in the Trump White House chillingly reminds me of the last moments of the movie “The Omen” as the president’s young son Damien (and spawn of Satan) strolls down the path with “ominus vobiscum” music playing as the titles roll up the screen.

      • Tom says:

        Somewhere in all my internetting today I saw a statement that Barron had tested negative. I wouldn’t be surprised if Barron turns out to be the most well adjusted Trump of them all in the long run. I seem to recall reading that his mother kept him with her in New York after the 2016 election as she wanted to keep him away from the influence of his older half-siblings. Barron may have the most insightful and revealing book of them all when the time comes.

        • Peterr says:

          “the most well adjusted Trump of them all”

          No offense to Barron, but that’s a mighty low bar.

          • SaltinWound says:

            It’s an open secret that Barron is on the spectrum. By all accounts Melania is a good and protective patent.

  4. Mitch Neher says:

    Trump now has a perfectly good excuse for losing the 2020 election. He should take it. And spare the country whatever else he may have had in mind.

    • K-spin says:

      Agree. If there is anything that we’ve learned over the past four years, it is that DJT’s personality structure is such that he will never admit he was wrong, and is fundamentally unable to admit to, or accept, any situation that challenges his rigid self-concept of being in power, and in control. The costs have been appalling and unprecedented, as we all know.

      The question I keep asking myself though, is how these traits will play out in a transition of power situation, when that – as I very much hope – occurs. When asked that question this week, DJT’s response was nothing less than terrifying.

      So I ask you all – as a mental health professional – to Focus On The Prize, which is getting this dangerous man out of office. Because TBH his covid infection may end up being the very thing which ‘allows’ him to cede the election, while keeping his ego intact.

      Do I give a flying duck about how he feels, and preserving his precious little man-child ego? No, of course I don’t. I do, however, think that the alternative may be catastrophic.

      My advice is that we give him an ‘out’ whenever we can. Covid or otherwise. The most important thing right now is that he’s voted out, and leaves without putting the country into unnecessary chaos.

      And afterwards? Let’s just rely on the long arm of the law and a rejuvenated DoJ to pursue and prosecute criminal conduct as it may.

    • hapa says:

      I believe you’ve nailed it.
      That’s the whole point of the drama unfolding in the last three days. Trump and his co-actor Mark Meadows deserve to be nominated for an Oscar next year.

    • harpie says:

      It might not be Trump making that decision.

      It might be any of a number of people directing Trump what to do, in order to come out OK on the other side.

      … BARR could be high up in that Board of Directors.

  5. Raven Eye says:

    This is the URL for a high resolution photo of the 25 September Supreme Court nomination announcement held in the rose Garden posted on Politico:


    You can click on it for a little bit of a zoom.

    I didn’t pay much attention to the event, but this pretty much capsulizes Trump’s approach to Covid.

    • Tom says:

      If they were sitting any closer they’d be in each others’ laps. Guess they couldn’t find a hot tub big enough.

      • Raven Eye says:

        I guess Melania didn’t have in mind one of those big European-type spa pools when she redesigned the Rose Garden.

        Maybe next term…

    • FL Resister says:

      Yup , they’re lined up like cordwood.
      Lives to burn through.
      That’s all people are to Trump.

  6. klynn says:

    There has been a question I’ve been trying to answer since Chris Wallace noted Trump arrived too late to the debate venue to be covid tested. Why was he too late?

    • Raven Eye says:

      I think keeping other people waiting is one of Trump’s decades-old MOs. It’s a power thing.

      • harpie says:

        I agree with this assessment.
        As with baboons, etc. for Trump, POWER is EVERYTHING …
        …same thing could be said about his TROOP, the Republican Party.

        [See my comment below @8:59am wrt: TrumpCamp NOT “pulling” negative ads when Biden did.]

        [bmaz, I realize this may go over your line…just delete if necessary]

        • klynn says:

          Per Rayne’s update:
          I agree, the timeline of covid progression begs the question about timeline. It goes to the heart of the question of capable judgement to protect the republic.

          • Troutwaxer says:

            The doctor said “72 hours” which pushes things back to Wednesday at least. The may have known that a staff member had it at the very least.

    • Spencer Dawkins says:

      Trump even left Queen Elizabeth standing in the sun for like half an hour during a state visit. He’s often late, in my understanding.

      I don’t think we need to look deeper than “narcissists don’t have to be on time”.

    • klynn says:

      While agree with the replies above, I’m questioning whether Team Trump knew there was a potential covid exposure and plowed through to the debate hedging the risk.

      • Savage Librarian says:

        I noticed that Trump’s ears were unusually red the night of the debate. It could have been from anger, illness, medication, or all of these. His makeup seemed more thoroughly applied as well. It would not surprise me if he was ill then and knowledgeable about that. After all, he believes in “herd mentality.”

      • Tom says:

        The David Frum article in The Atlantic cited by jplm below indicates that Trump knew he’d been exposed to the virus but took to the debate stage anyway. I wonder if that knowledge partially accounts for his surly and bloody-minded attitude that night, knowing that he might well be facing a reckoning for his months of downplaying the pandemic.

        • Mooser says:

          And Trump came to the debate venue too late to be tested, purposely avoiding the test, possibly hoping to infect Biden. Melania wore a mask, as not to be accused of infecting her own family.

          • FL Resister says:

            From what I understand the whole family entourage arrived too late to be tested. And they all sat on their side maskless.

  7. joel fisher says:

    I disagree with those who are saying “he’s faking for sympathy”, however, in the event of a loss, Covid-19 will be the culprit, not the voters. It’s completely out of character for Trump to not use something like this for personal gain. His base will not notice that Trump is the self-admitted king of Covid denial, thus creating super-spreading venues wherever he went. This might make losing more tolerable for him and his adoring droolers. “No fair; I wasn’t able to campaign. I woulda won an even fight”. Look for him–again, in the event of a loss–to announce for ’24 as soon as the votes are counted.
    PS: Just in case you had the slightest sympathy, this is how Trump rolls with regard to presidential candidates getting sick during the campaign:

  8. harpie says:

    Thanks, bmaz!

    I see you’ve retweeted Sarah Kendzior.
    [To explain to others]: this is about Biden “pulling” some of his “negative” ads after Trump landed at Walter Reed [which Trump camp. refused to reciprocate, btw] >>>

    6:49 PM · Oct 2, 2020

    Wrong move. Most of Biden’s “negative ads” are simply factual descriptions of horrific things Trump did. Some are merely montages of Trump saying terrible things. They are not “negative” due to spin, but due to truth.

    Keep them. The public deserves the truth.

    In May, Kendzior posted the following [my description of two photos]:

    12:34 PM · May 24, 2020

    1] [photo of: contemporary super spreader event, in Arkansas. [?]]

    2] [photo of: detail of “The Garden of Earthly Delights” in the Museo del Prado in Madrid, c. 1495–1505, attributed to Bosch.

    There are some other details from that painting which could be set beside a photo of the ACB Super Spreader Event. I would LOVE to see those two photos together!

  9. harpie says:

    It’s becoming CLEARER by the minute that TRUMP himself is probably the
    GREATEST SUPER SPREADER in this story.

    and his first instinct was to BLAME HOPE HICKS:

    TRUMP to Hannity, 10/1/20:
    …think back, you know it’s it’s a tough kind of situation. It’s a terrible thing. So, um, I just went for a test and we’ll see what happens. I mean, who knows? But you know Hope very well. She’s fantastic, and she’s done a great job. But, it’s very, very hard when you are with people from the military or from law enforcement, and they come over to you and they, they wanna hug you and they wanna kiss you because we really have done a good job for ‘em. And, you get close and things happen. I was surprised to hear with Hope, but she’s a very warm person with them. And she, she knows there’s a risk, but…

    That is just a skeevyway to talk about someone.

  10. harpie says:

    Here’s some updated info about who’s been on AF1, from the WSJ Marcy just retweeted:

    7:48 AM · Oct 3, 2020

    Trump boarded AF1 for three straight days before testing Covid+.
    Other passengers included Hope Hicks, who fell ill on one trip, plus:
    *41 WH aides & family
    *9 campaign staffers, GOP officials & political advisers
    *5 members of Congress
    Full manifest here: [WSJ link]

  11. harpie says:

    Tom Malinowski [D-NJ-07] represents Bedminster. He’s hearing from worried constituents about Trump/GOP fundraising event there:

    10:00 AM · Oct 3, 2020

    I’m hearing much concern from Somerset Hills residents about President Trump’s event in Bedminster after he’d been exposed to COVID. I’ve been in touch with the Governor’s office and with Somerset County.

    Many of the guests were from out of state, but of course staff are local. […]

    He calls for the President’s business, [which he illegally STILL profits from] to follow the rules** every OTHER business owner in NJ has to abide by.

    ** Good luck with that!

      • harpie says:

        More from WaPo:

        In the debate hall on Tuesday, “The first family came in wearing masks, but they took them off,” Fahrenkopf said. “The rules said you had to wear a mask.”

        • P J Evans says:

          There’s video of them wearing masks as they come in, and photos of them without masks, in their seats.

      • Eureka says:

        Also from that WaPo, a Mar a Lago pal dropping by NJ caught my eye:

        Many of the attendees were elderly, a mix of real estate figures and Trump friends, including Keith Frankel, a vitamins executive who had worked with Trump on hydroxychloroquine, an ­anti-malarial drug Trump had falsely touted as a coronavirus cure.

        “It was mostly the same stuff you hear him say on TV,” Frankel said of the president’s remarks, describing them in an interview late Thursday before Trump had tested positive.

        WaPo didn’t link their prior reporting, but Frankel tried to help Trump cook up some proverbial drug deals, bothering actually responsible officials during the initial height of the pandemic. Among other things, he’s the one who called Newsom at Trump’s behest to push a bulk purchase of Indian-made hydroxychloroquine, and similarly molested officials in NJ and NY.

        Since it was all “totally honest and philanthropic”, said to be true-believer type stuff, I want to know whether (and why not) he was bothering Trump, at the height of his illness, to take the HCQ.

        Quoted and discussed here:


          • Eureka says:

            You’re welcome, harpie! One other thing about that WaPo (besides the hard-to-take Halcyon Days intro), and this is for Rayne: they were definitely setting the timeline-narrative for Ronna Romney McDaniel of Michigan to be “the source”… (Rayne was concerned about an ultimate target on Whitmer the other day) omitting the DMV cesspool they’ve got percolating.

    • harpie says:

      He’s supposed to “follow the rules”, but we have to be CLEAR what that means, and often we are not. For example, this is a good 10/2 piece by Olivia Nuzzi at NY Mag:

      Trump Infects America

      Here she is talking about the Trump’s not wearing masks at the Debate:

      Although the Cleveland Clinic mandated that all guests within the perimeter of the debate wear face coverings, the president’s family members ignored that warning and declined to accept the masks offered to them by organizers.

      Was it a MANDATE or was it a WARNING?

      • ThoughtMail says:

        I haven’t been following the particulars of Tuesday’s debate as closely as the substance and fallout. That is, was the debate *in* the Cleveland Clinic?

        For the next debates, if any, it would be appropriate for the *owner* of the venue to set ground rules for their facility, regardless of rules set down by the debate commission. That is, “MASKLESS PERSONS WILL BE REMOVED FROM THE PREMISES BY SECURITY”.

        That would just about end the nonsense of debate attenders. And ease the facility’s post-debate sanitization routine.

    • P J Evans says:

      He’s checked himself into a hospital, because (he says) he has asthma and his doctor thinks it’s a good precaution.

  12. jaango says:

    Aside from from the Corona Covid, I have avoided the politics and the attendant ‘debate’ and all because and from our election results of 2016, we injected ourselves with the “bug” that is El Trumpudo, and today we are wallowing in the Era of Intentional Ignorance.

    The righteous history of El Trumpudo, and aptly and correctly recognized as “all mouth and no brains.” Subsequently, should Trump become re-elected in November, our nation will move forward into the next era, the Era of Criminal Stupidity, and this Era will be memorialized via the National Monument and Museum For Criminal Stupidity..

  13. John Paul Jones says:

    Just watched on CNN Dr Conley and “the team” give an update out front of Walter Reed. Most confusing. They seem to be deliberately dodging on the timeline, extending it back 72 hours so that the apparent start of the infection comes just after the debate. But Trump arrived late for that, so that there was no time to do a quick test. I think he knew he was positive by Tuesday morning at the latest, but that’s just a WAG.

    As to the antibodies treatment, Dr David Ho (who is working on such a treatment) was on Rachel Maddow last night, saying that typically, you would want to administer it early in the course of the disease so that it reduced, to some extent, the viral load and reduced the number of days spent in hospital. Not a cure, but it can reduce the severity of the eventual course of the disease. Maybe Rayne would have better information on this.

    Anyway, after aboug 10 minutes, as the questions began to get more specific, and Conley got increasingly flustered about the timeline, he got a signal from somebody off-camera and they all trooped back inside

    • P J Evans says:

      Lying on a large scale requires remembering which lies you told to whom, and they’re apparently losing track.

        • John Paul Jones says:

          Even the pretend reality of a novel has to be coherent, or the reader will just give up and toss it aside. I don’t think they really care about keeping track of any of their lies, but rather, make up new ones on the spot, then shout them loudly in the hopes that no-one will clearly remember the previous lies.

          • Ginevra diBenci says:

            Conley, the White House physician, seemed to be charged with coordinating the cover story. It relied on snowing us with a few actual numbers (like systolic BP) while withholding most revealing ones. More than anything else, like all things Trump, it was intended to blind us with the brilliant whiteness of all those white coats. Someone spent all night and many bottles of bleach achieving that otherworldly sight.

        • What Constitution? says:

          Harpie, Harpie, Harpie — As Colbert told us, “reality has a notable liberal bias”, which of course rules it out of the Trump WH information base. Dr. “Smarmy Ken Doll” Conley was truly so very clever as he refused repeatedly to answer the question of whether the President had at any time been on oxygen (“he’s not on oxygen now” was all he could slyly repeat, with an impish twitch suggesting that he thought nobody was noticing, not even the seven or eight followup questioners). Anyone who watched was left with the clear understanding that we weren’t being told some things that must have been important enough to feel a need to hide them — such that the “not on oxygen now” could easily be just another way of saying “we were 35 minutes late to this podium because we were unhooking the oxygen in the elevator so we could tell you he isn’t on oxygen now, we gotta go”. Which Jim Acosta followed with a tweet five minutes later saying that “inside sources” confirm the situation is somehow much more dangerous that Ken Conley let on…. Hope the President recovers well, but this presser certainly cast as much doubt as it did reassurance.

    • Vicks says:

      Yes doc#2 said Trump received the antibody treatment 48 hours ago, so it looks like two elite docs have the same bad math hiccup.

    • MB says:

      That “somebody off camera” appeared to be Mark Meadows, who was standing by himself just outside the camera’s frame, this time wearing a mask.

      Dr. Conley has the minimal verbal-evasive skills that anybody doing PR for Trump must apparently must have in public. He was really cagey when a reporter asked about whether Trump had been on oxygen. The answer was “not now”. When another reporter tried to clarify by asking whether that means he was on oxygen at any time prior (like while still in the WH before being transferred to WR), he just repeated “not in the last 24 hours”, looked over at Meadows, who apparently gave the choke sign offstage and the news conference was over just like that…

      • Rugger9 says:

        Those of us who were Cold Warriors well remember how TASS and Pravda would only admit to their leaders having colds, only to announce the sad passing the next day or the next week. It was something of a running joke (like the phrase “from the Russian judge, 2.6” for figure skating) but since DJT’s WH has modeled itself on the Kremlin with Vlad’s help, why not try this tactic as well?

        This is where the lack of photo evidence DJT is as well as has been claimed is significant if not conclusive. Maybe the minions are terrified of a President Pence even if acting.

        I see elsewhere that Chris Christie has joined the ranks of the COVID-19 positives, let’s recall how his job was to prep DJT for the debate, which because of the close contact likely involved might mean DJT was already infected. One definite possibility is ACB’s nomination announcement party a week ago.

  14. Vicks says:

    I can’t fucking tell if my posts go through or are tossed by moderators because of this extended time out I am in, so forgive me if I am repeating myself or sound foolish because my comments seem out of context when read hours/days after the fact but doc #2 said Trump was given the antibody treatment 48 hours ago all reporting is 24 hours ago

    [First, you’re frequently in auto-mod for security reasons because of the frequency of typos/mismatches in the log-in fields. The system can’t tell if you’re the real Vicks or a fake. Second, if you continue to complain about security here you need to rethink what this site is about. We don’t owe you fast access; this place operates without monetizing users’ personal data. /~Rayne]

    • Vicks says:

      Security measures?
      The last comment of mine before being put into “auto-mod” I suggested an opinion being pushed on a post was overblown. It was made clear publicly, that my detailed follow up wasn’t going to be allowed in the conversation and for the next couple of weeks my comments were held up, not posted, or received snarky responses from moderators.
      Of course as an individual I am not “owed” anything, but your community as a whole certainly is.

      • Rayne says:

        Yes, we don’t owe you any explanations about our security or operations. Any further explanations may actually hurt both the site and other community members. What you see is what you get here, and you get it for free from people who volunteer their time and community members’ donations to pay webmasters. Nobody’s holding a weapon to your head forcing you to participate unwillingly. And you’re pissing off the person who takes the time to clean up your inability to type the same thing in 3 little boxes more than 3 times in a row over your 1142 comments while validating you’re not a goddamned foreign troll masquerading as a community member.

        source: xkcd on Free Speech (ep. 1357) https://imgs.xkcd.com/comics/free_speech.png

  15. pdaly says:

    I got interrupted while watching the live news conference and don’t have time yet to rewatch via the video, but Trump’s doctor claimed Trump has no fever today but failed to mention whether that was with/without the use of Tylenol or similar antipyretic.

    The majority of the team of doctors are introduced as Pulmonary & Critical Care doctors. They usually work in the intensive care unit (ICU). Perhaps this is normal for someone like the President of the USA to have on hand instead of generalists on a routine medical floor. The anesthesiologist would be helpful for sudden induction if Trump needed to be intubated (or if he’s in pain?).

    As usual, emptywheel and Rayne were questioning the Trump illness timeline long before the rest of the media caught on.

    BTW, is Pence still running the COVID pandemic national response team? Has anyone asked Pence whether he thinks he’s doing a great job?

    • Rayne says:

      Yeah, the presence of Pulmonary & Critical Care doctors was interesting — but if they’re on camera, they aren’t working on Trump at that moment. I don’t quite know what to make of it apart from knowing Walter Reed has them at the ready.

      The one thing missing which journalists do not appear to have pointed out? No proof-of-life video. We should have had a smiling, waving Trump giving his annoying thumbs up from inside Walter Reed immediately after Conley’s presser.

      I suppose I should add that as an update now that reports of another off-the-record briefing has occurred.

      Good to see you, by the way. :-)

      • pdaly says:

        Yes, I heard that on CNN. A pool report quoting an anonymous source re: Trump’s condition that there’s no clear path to recovery or words to that effect.

        The doctor mentioned Trump’s oxygen saturation is 96% (on room air, implied, if not receiving supplemental oxygen). The reporters could ask if that reading is “at rest” or “with activity.”

        The follow up question could be: “What is Trump’s O2 saturation with ambulation?”

        If there is no reading, why not? Is he bedridden? Or does he desaturate with exertion?

        • Rayne says:

          Anonymous source now identified as chief of staff Mark Meadows. He was caught on an open mic blowing his anonymity.

          I’m going to refer to your comment for my next update. That kind of specificity is needed to get around the fog of bullshit. Thanks.

        • Tarkeel says:

          The doc was answering about the last ambulatory oxygen measuring, without specifying when that was taken. It’s likely the last time he was walking about was going from the White House to Marine One. He could have been on oxygen (most likely CPAP or the like) just before walking out, so that number isn’t really telling anything at all.

          • Eureka says:

            LOL, they are not getting a CPAP on that man without tranqs. I’d even take bets he wouldn’t tolerate a simple non-rebreather for long. [Did they ever reveal how they gave him O2 at the WH? Method of O2 delivery is another clue as to his state (THE PRESS NEEDS TO ASK ABOUT THIS, TOO, not just amount and time) nasal cannula can only do so much, and whether it’s enough depends on the condition. I’d guess at least an NRB to get his levels back up as quickly as was reported.]

            Which gives rise to a new theory about their presser lies and evasions: maybe they’re pretending they never give him O2 because he is *out cold* when they do, and they don’t want him to learn on the teevee. (This is barely snark, btw.)

            • Rayne says:

              Oh my gawd I hadn’t even thought about the fact they might have sedated him *and they didn’t want to disclose this* for numerous reasons including his attitude when conscious. I should know better by now with this character we are deep into Bizarro World and such possibilities are probabilities.

                • Rayne says:

                  Not certain. Might depend on how deep he was out. Betting Trump and his minions are doing everything possible to prevent Pence from being sworn in, including playing loose with guidelines/rules about sedation.

                  • P J Evans says:

                    Or how long. I don’t know how long it took for that O2 treatment at the WH, but if it was less than a couple of hours, it could have been presented as a nap.

              • Eureka says:

                Rayne & harpie:

                I figure we might just as well let it rip (our plausible imaginations) at this point. As boundary-less as they are, these people are pretty predictable.

                Welp, lots of things are _supposed_ to happen that these people never _do_ and vice versa… (my gut says a transfer only happens if he’s _really_ knocked out on a vent or something _and_ we find out about it. Perhaps via Chatty McMeadows…)

                Checking the 25th wiki, it looks like Ronnie (under WH Counsel advice) did it in a sketchy way for his colectomy (see GHW Bush at top of this section):


      • MB says:

        That phalanx of white coats on camera were not all doctors. At least 2 of them were Navy nurses. When making introductions at the beginning of the presser, Dr. Conley actually acknowledged 4 Navy nurses, 2 of whom were not present, so presumably those 2 were the ones were within observation range of the First Patient. The whole event had the stink of whitewashing from start to finish. One TV doc this morning (on Al Jazeera) thought if the prez was getting the superlative first-class treatment that one would expect, that he should have had a CT scan of his lungs just to check for any damage there. He was pissed no reporters asked that specific question, though who knows what kind of response such a question may have garnered anyway.

        • Rayne says:

          Yeah, especially since a majority of COVID patients’ lung images show ‘ground glass opacities’, ending up with long-term lung damage. Journalists are stuck in their niches and not prepping adequately for this, and/or we’re not seeing health care/medical journalists covering this story, just White House press corps who are over their heads.

          • Raven Eye says:

            With the demise of print media and the focus of radio and TV news on breaking events, the budgets aren’t there for the specialty reporters of decades back. But more the fault of the editors and publishers for not having a better backup plan to get some “asking points” into the hands of reporters who are more used to covering politics.

            • Rayne says:

              You know what my budget is for coming up with better questions?


              Once Trump tweeted his COVID-positive status, journalists and their editors should have pulled up experts from their contacts lists to ask them questions about what’s next.

              And 10 months into this pandemic, there’s no excuse not to have a dedicated Twitter list of resources. I have one just for COVID.

              • P J Evans says:

                This far into it, they should know about the “ground glass opacities” – we heard about those months ago, as one of the major signs. (Can’t remember off the top of my head if they’ll show in chest x-rays. Those they can do without taking you out of your room – they bring the machine and the plate to you.)

                • Rayne says:

                  Yeah, they know — the appearance of ‘ground glass opacities’ is a symptom which distinguishes COVID from other viral or bacterial pneumonia and is seen in asymptomatic as well as symptomatic persons. We learned about the high rate of this feature from the Chinese in late Feb/early March, pretty sure I mentioned this in a post.

                  Because this feature appears so frequently in COVID patients they may not even need bother with imaging lungs only unless they need to look for other damage like myocarditis.

                • Tarkeel says:

                  The opacities do show up in chest x-rays. I read a paper (in April I think) about patients coming in with abdominal pain, and the abdominal x-ray revealing the lung opacities.

                  Ultrasound is also supposed to be a quick diagnosis, and is much more portable.

                  • P J Evans says:

                    The hospital I was at did the ultrasound in radiology, but they have a portable x-ray machine so they don’t need to take people out of the room for chest x-rays. (They also have a portable EKG setup.) Not sure if they have CT/PET/MRI on premises – I went to an imaging place for that stuff (CT/PET scans).

          • posaune says:

            I assumed that’s why he was brought to WRMC: the need for a CAT scan for definitive dx. There’s no CAT scan at the WH.

      • Sandwichman says:

        He needs to be holding up a copy of this morning’s New York Times and saying “fake news!”

    • Rugger9 says:

      Pence and Jared both have teams for the pandemic, and I think you are correct that Pence’s team is officially still going. Jared probably got bored and moved on to some other shiny object.

  16. harpie says:

    Why call it the “White House Rose Garden Event”?

    It should possibly be something like:
    The Federalist Society Amy Coney-Barrett Initiation Rite

    • Rayne says:

      Saw that, brought back memories of the weird jacket distortion from George Bush’s debates. Could definitely explain why Trump made no effort to do more than wave to journalists and why he walked slower than usual (fatigue from O2 depletion even with canula).

      • Molly Pitcher says:

        When Trump slow walked to Marine One yesterday, I was struck by the fact that it was the first time in my memory, that his suit coat was buttoned. Usually he shambles along with his jacket or top coat flapping around.

        • Tom says:

          Lapsing into a state of conspiracy-mindedness or over-analysis, I wondered whether there was any significance to Trump banging the handrail three times just before getting aboard the chopper. Just a sign of his stress, anger, or frustration at having to go to the hospital, or was it a signal to someone about how he was feeling after the walk across the lawn? Or some other message? Or no message? The same with Ivanka’s and Eric’s messages today calling their father a “warrior”. Just meant to buck up their Dad, or a code word that something at the WH was being taken care of in his absence?

          • Eureka says:

            I took the tapping on the rail as a frail, not-in-control, older person confronting their next fate (the unknown at the hospital): ~ Well, OK, let’s get on with this / here it goes / buckle up-type-thing. He may even tap on embarkments as a habit, but even if he does, this instance had that anticipatory, resigned, sense to me.

        • Rayne says:

          Yup. I thought the same thing. He also didn’t have much foot drag until a few feet from the helicopter where he seemed to have a little dystonic movement.

        • P J Evans says:

          I noticed in the video of him leaving the chopper that the flight crew was properly masked. (So were all the uniformed people at the ACB wingding – they were over by the state flags.)

  17. soothsayer says:

    Well, to start, sigh.

    Second, I will quote this nymag intelligencer article quote:

    “At the best of times, Trumpworld operates with all the strategic direction of a chicken with its head cut off,” a senior Republican official told me. “Right now, they’re operating like a chicken with its head cut off, lit on fire, and thrown off a cliff.”


    Third, as others have stated, I do not wish this on anyone, and I am sad to read of so many in the admin getting sick at this time, and do sincerely wish their health all the best.

    But lastly, I have to as others have noted, point out that a) this reflects additionally on the irresponsibility demonstrated by our national leadership, regardless of luck and probability, since much of this can and should have been avoided through risk measures; b) coupled with current pandemic # of US covid cases, # of US covid deaths, and overall US current covid trends, which all additionally demonstrate continued incompetence in leadership not just to Americans, but globally. Many have stated this, but the volatile and irresponsible decisions towards others and themselves, are ongoing national security threats, on top of all other ongoing national security threats. This is disheartening to say the least.

    In the end, I am very sad that any of this is happening. I have always wished that prior to the last election, into the election, after the election, during impeachment, and now even during the pandemic and current election, that saner more responsible heads would prevail in the conservative base. But, it seems their political calculus has always been paramount, over and above all other factors that have proven to matter more. I am sad, and disheartened, and hope and pray we come out of this, removing all factors that harmfully disunites us including continued falsehoods, and pulling together on core principles that unite us based on truths.

  18. Duke says:

    I seriously need to drink decaf, take up yoga, avoid Sativa …especially following falling to sleep listening to every version of The Torture Never Stops by Frank Zappa while sleeping the night before.

    TicToc. The time-line makes me think about what the likes of Barr and Pence would have decided to do if the third SCOTUS nominee was the goal. Who publicly confesses to everything they are doing as they are doing it?

  19. DLup says:

    At least three of the members of Congress on AF1 on Wednesday on the way to Minnesota were the Republican congressmen from Minnesota: Emmer, Hagedorn, and Stauber. I believe they remained in Minnesota Wednesday and no news as to their status has been made public yet.

    • harpie says:

      According to Barr’s/Doj’s spokesperson at about 12:30pm,
      his tests came back negative yesterday and today.

      …but, as Marcy reminds us:
      12:50 PM · Oct 3, 2020

      The Attorney General is also a pathological liar, so unfortunately has no reserve of trust.

      […sure can’t argue with that observation.]

      All that doesn’t matter, though, because Barr had already determined that HE was not required to follow any protocols, anyway…
      HE gets to CHOOSE which rules to follow.

      To which Marcy responds:
      1:48 PM · Oct 3, 2020

      One should assume that Barr is not quarantining bc
      1) he has some cover-ups to try to salvage this week,
      2) he probably will try to intervene in some other embarrassing cases,
      3) he wants to ensure some succession that doesn’t blow up.

      […also hard to argue with.]

    • harpie says:

      Here’s a video of Kellyanne Conway [C19+] in close conversation with
      Billy Barr [C19? who believes him?] at “The Central Event”

      10:36 PM · Oct 2, 2020

      Kellyanne Conway just confirmed reports she has COVID-19.
      Here is a video of her having an extended, close conversation with Bill Barr at the Rose Garden superspreader event last weekend: [VIDEO]

  20. Savage Librarian says:

    The Antonine/Cyprian plagues in the Roman Empire from A.D. 165 to 262; the Justinian Plague in the Roman Empire from 542 – 755 AD; and the Black Death in Europe from 1347 to the early 1350s all had significant impact on populations, subsequently causing structural change.

    We can only speculate what impact the Covid 19 plague will end up having. But, just as some positive changes occurred as the result of these past tragedies, we can try to find ways to make our own positive changes from our current tragedy.

    “How three prior pandemics triggered massive societal shifts” – October 1, 2020, Andrew Latham, Macalester College


  21. gmoke says:

    “Deux” is French for “two”
    “Deaux” is “a small, wooded commune in the Gard department in southern France”

    “D’oh” is what Homer Simpson says when he makes a mistake.

    • Rayne says:

      “Deaux” is what bmaz comes up with bleary eyed at 4:00 a.m. — something between [two + Homer Simpson’s exclamation].

      • Ken Muldrew says:

        Hey, it’s Cajun man!
        The chief of the administraZHIOWN took helicopter transportaZHIOWN for hospitalizaZHIOWN leading to speculaZHIOWN about his situaZHIOWN with fears that the infecZHIOWN was treated with an injecZHIOWN of a high concentraZHIOWN of bleach for sterilizaZHIOWN to achieve nullificaZHIOWN of the covid inflammaZHIOWN caused by poor cogniZHIOWN that led to inacZHIOWN instead of precauZHIOWN thereby spreading contaGE-ZHIOWN.

  22. I Never Lie and am Always Right says:

    I hope that someone is paying attention to what the ratfuckers like Barr are doing right now. They will be the among the first to learn about Trump’s real condition. Watching their actions will give us clues about Trump’s real condition. If Trump’s condition is deteriorating, and the doctors are saying that there is a possibility of him becoming incapacitated or worse, these ratfuckers will take steps to address the anticipated power vacuum. Barr will attempt to manage things so that he consolidates his power even more. (Megolamaniacs like Ted Cruz are already dreaming about stepping into Trump’s shoes.)

    • readerOfTeaLeaves says:

      Well, on that note, here’s what @TheRickWilson tweeted:

      The flood of intel @ProjectLincoln
      has received today is both remarkable and terrifying.
      At the WH, the number of the infections and potential infections constitutes a national security crisis of the first order.

      DM for signal.

      Someone tweeted Batman, looking up into the bat-signal in the night skies. But Wilson has no reason to titillate without info to back it up.

      It’s important to know who is doing what, starting with Kushner.
      Also, it would be good to know what money is moving between which accounts, via tax havens, into what banks, and in what sums. Money must be zipping around the globe.

    • Peterr says:

      I was thinking Moscow, circa 1981-82.

      Chairman Brezhnev President Trump is quite well, and is simply spending some quality time with a number of his dear friends, who all happen to be in the medical community.”

  23. P J Evans says:

    Dr Esther Choo was interviewed on CNN, and she has some questions – like why were they doing ultrasound exams of his *heart*? (They might be trying to get a baseline so they can spot damage – I had an echocardiogram three years ago, and it was, to me, interesting: look, I can watch my own heart beating!)

  24. Wm. Boyce says:

    I continue to be astonished by the stupidity of the people looting, er, I mean “leading” this country.

    I have a question for the community:
    We know that Pence would succeed Trump in office if he dies, and Ms. Pelosi is third in line as Speaker.
    But what happens in the election if a dead person is on the ballot running against Biden?

  25. Ewan says:

    Possible scenario : the faux off-record is just to spice up the crisis and make Trump look even better when he recovers. He has received antibody cocktails + remdesevir, and his doctor says he is doing well. Why trust Mark Meadows, of all people, instead of his doctor, who has difficulties saying an outright lie?
    The idea is : in front of a life-or-death moment, genius-genetics Donald Trump prevailed and is here for 2 to 3 more terms if needed. Biden did not vanquish the virus, he is just an old man. Choose the Slayer of Covid for president.

    • mass interest says:

      Would Biden, as the Democratic presidential candidate, have access to the same medical resources as Trump should he come down with Covid-19?

        • BobCon says:

          I know you’re not stoking fears, but just in case anyone is jumpy, Biden is not going to be lacking in top quality care if he should, by terrible misfortune, need it.

          He is probably better off than Trump was because his team is being extremely responsible. I’ve read descriptions of how they operate — they have been listening to doctors all along.

    • Tom says:

      Seems more like an attempt to prepare the ground in case the President’s condition worsens so Meadows won’t appear to have been blindsided by the news.. It also sounds like Meadows’ way of sending the message that he’s in the know about Trump’s state of health: “I’m in charge.” — Alexander Haig’s famous quote.

  26. Tom Edelson says:

    Possibly some perspective might be derived from knowing that, on at least one right-wing site — Breitbart News — some folk (commenters, not staff writers) are floating a different kind of conspiracy theory about Trump’s COVID diagnosis. This theory does not deny that he is sick, nor claim that he is less (or more) sick than reported. This theory deals with *how* Trump (and some other Republicans) got infected. Samples:

    “Maybe the Dems intentionally infected a few senators as a way to derail ACB’s confirmation.”

    “This covid thing with Trump & wife, comes on the heels of the introduction of Amy in the Rose Garden. And now quite a few Republicans who attended also have it. Something just doesn’t pass the smell test. Maybe Amy’s selection was the straw that broke a unhinged lefty’s limited sanity & somehow he/she passed the virus around? I know that it sounds like a conspiracy theory, but the lefty’s are prone to acts of depravity.”

    “Republicans are being targeted by infected dems. Dems are no doubt infecting fellow Americans for political purposes. This is obvious.”

    And there are more like these.

    These particular comments were posted to a Breitbart story that was actually about Tillis’ infection, not Trump’s:


    To be clear, I think this “theory” is BS. My concern is the possible consequences of some people’s believing it.

    • skua says:

      It would seem an attractive idea to promote for those who aim to increase divisiveness and deludedness within USA.

    • Mooser says:

      If COVID-19 is, indeed spread by droplets or aerosols, it would be fiendishly easy to go around infecting people by getting some COVID-19, putting it in a spray bottle, and pulling the trigger. It could be loaded into a spray can, too.

    • BobCon says:

      Breibart is rated as a trusted news source by Facebook.

      I can guarantee Zuck is not not prepared for a deluge.

  27. posaune says:

    OT — sorry (delete if you need to)
    So sad about the passing of Bob Gibson, star of the 1964, 1967, 1968 St.L Cardinals.
    His 1.68 ERA was the reason the NL lowered the pitching mound in 1969. RIP, Gibby! (oh yeah, and Gibby was WAY better than Denny McLain.)

    • P J Evans says:

      That was back when I was listening to the Giants on radio – and when Gibson was pitching, the game was possibly a little lopsided in his favor. He was a great pitcher.

      • Peterr says:

        Also a great hitter. He is 7th on the “Most HRs by a pitcher in a game when pitching”, and had two spectacular home runs in the World Series.

        St. Louis fans were still mourning the death of Lou Brock, and now this. Damn.

        • posaune says:

          My dad used to take me out for lunch occasionally at the old Miss Hullings cafeteria (Olive Street?). One day, we saw Bob Gibson in there with his wife. It was so exciting! I was about 10yo, and went up to say hi. He was nice, friendly, but still intimidating!

    • I Never Lie and am Always Right says:

      I saw Gibby pitch many times as a youngster. The Cards had lots of great and interesting players back in the 60’s, before Whiteyball took the town by storm and got them back in the Series. Really sorry to see Gibby pass.

      Some of their 1960’s players are still around. Tim McCarver is well known today. So is Joe Torre, who came to the Cards in ’69. Bob Uecker announces for the Brewers. Julian Javier is still alive. So is Dal Maxvill, who was their shortstop and later their GM. He was not as productive a hitter as Gibby was.

      I read and thoroughly enjoyed David Halberstam’s book about the 1964 World Series.

      • posaune says:

        I had an structural engineering professor in graduate school (statics, tensile structures, steel, concrete slab design, rebar, etc.) who was a real Cardinals fan (even in NYC), and every class, he included a trivia piece about the Cardinals. On the midterm and final, there was always a Cardinals question for extra points. And one time a bonus: the starting line up for the 1964 WS team! (smile — I always got the bonus points)

          • bmaz says:

            It really is an excellent article. And a deeper dive into the man, not just the player. If you’ve ever read the early biographies of Jackie Robinson and Willie Mays (I did long ago) you can really feel the hardship that even Gibson felt. It is painful. But it must still be acknowledged.

            • Peterr says:

              Among long-time St. Louis folks, the stories of the racism Gibson had to deal with are amazing. I’ve never seen it spelled out in print, but oral tradition has it that in 1968, Gibson decided to buy a house in St. Louis, after years of renting not knowing if he’d be in town long enough, and began looking in the well-to-do suburb of Clayton. He appeared to hit a string of bad luck, though, as each time he found a house he liked, the buyers would tell him that someone else had bought the house before he made his offer.

              Finally he realtor pulled him aside, and said that he’d been told that it was his race. A realtor for one of the sellers told Gibson’s realtor “Folks would be happy to sell to Mr. Gibson — he just won the frickin’ World Series for us! — but then the neighborhood couldn’t keep the NEXT black family from moving in.”

  28. P J Evans says:

    Question I’ve seen elseweb – were any justices there besides Roberts? I saw that Scalia’s widow was there, in one of the interior pics (unmasked, and she’s over 80).

  29. Chris.EL says:

    wondered, as I read this USA Today piece (not one of my go-to authorities — Google likes it) ~ ~ ~

    *** when was last time Trump played golf? ***

    part of the reason he has his current “health” is due to that golf exercise.

    This story from 8+ hrs. ago…
    ” ‘Falling off the cliff’: Experts say Trump’s quick move to hospital could be sign of serious COVID illness

  30. punaise says:

    “Part Deaux” – I see what you did there, d’oh!

    The gang that couldn’t shoot
    hydroxychloroquine straight.

  31. P J Evans says:

    That video they released today looked like something that was shot yesterday, before he went to Walter Reed. It looks like a room in the WH, more than one in a hospital.

    • bmaz says:

      With this bunch, who knows? But they really do have specific capacity at Walter Reed for a President hospitalized, including coms.

      • P J Evans says:

        He was in a suit and tie – or at least the visible part of him was. Plus the flags, and some very nice cabinets with knobs, not the kind of grabbable pulls that you usually see in businesses/hospitals. (I know there’s a name, but it’s eluding me.)

          • P J Evans says:

            I’m doubting the video is from today, not that he’s at WR.

            ETA: my experience is that as a patient, you don’t have a lot of choices.

            • readerOfTeaLeaves says:

              Spouse recently in hospital — doesn’t make me an expert, but I’ve certainly seen things that signify ‘Patient’, and those signifiers were missing from that recent hospital video of Trump giving a pep talk from Walter Reed:

              – why no hospital wristband? In the past 7 years, any time a family member is in hospital, they get a band that is their ID. It is scanned optically to ensure the correct meds, dosage, are given to the correct patient at the correct time. Despite the fact that POTUS is exalted, he should still have a hospital ID band.

              — background looked like something from the WH days ago, or even longer.

              — no IV attachments on the backs of his hands, nor on arm? Seems bizarre — when I’ve visited people, they have an IV receptor already secured to one hand in case the nursing staff need to act rapidly. Seems bizarre that Trump would not show any sign of bandages or IV drip attachment.

              The video struck me as pure propaganda, and it would be useful to know if it was a pre-arranged bat-signal of some kind. (Yes, yes, I do have my tin foil hat handy and will put it on right now…)

              • Hika says:

                I don’t think there is too high a risk of staff at WR misidentifying the patient occupying the Presidential Suite at WR, so no wristband isn’t an issue.

                • P J Evans says:

                  The one I was at, they printed out a whole sheet of ID labels, only one of which went on the wristband – the rest were for records.
                  (The chemo place labeled me with stickies of name and birthdate. But there, it was fewer people.)

  32. Savage Librarian says:

    Maggie H seems to be saying that DT may have been having an anxiety attack as a result of his virus diagnosis.

    “Maggie Haberman on the Fallout from Trump’s Hospitalization” | The New Yorker, 10/3/20
    “What have you been able to learn about the President’s state of mind?”

    “His friend Stanley Chera, who was a real-estate magnate in New York, died [of the coronavirus, in April]. Chera was older than Trump is and was in worse physical shape than Trump is, and Chera got very, very sick, very quickly, and basically went into the hospital and never came out. Trump was very spooked by that, and I think that has stayed with him. And he is—I don’t want to say hypochondriacal, because that is not the right word—but he gets very agitated when he is not feeling great. And I think all of this contributed to how they were dealing with him [on Friday].”


    • Rayne says:

      Yeah, sure. Mm-hmmm…meanwhile, Gabe Sherman-Vanity Fair wrote sources told him Trump was having heart palpitations yesterday which are one of the potential side effects with Regeneron’s antibody therapy.

      And buried way back in November was a tweet by a contributor to The Hill — a tweet which has since disappeared which said Trump went to Walter Reed for that weird “advance work not-a-physical” because he had “chest discomfort.”

      One of our community members (hello, rosalind) noted the weird way in which Trump’s doctors gave only his systolic blood pressure — this suggests they are worried about hypotension on the right side of the heart which is common in COVID patients with cardiac symptoms.

      Maggie H was sharing a story which can easily occlude other details. Like the possibility Trump went to Walter Reed because he’s got a comorbidity — heart disease — and both the antibody therapy and COVID increase his risk of a heart attack.

      • pdaly says:

        I missed that detail. Certainly makes more sense of the “ultrasound” testing that came out during the morning’s press conference.

        • Rayne says:

          EXACTLY. The ultrasound but no CT scan mentioned? Yeah. They were looking for myocarditis.

          And now I’m wondering if they suspected he had COVID earlier but was asymptomatic and testing negative, possibly blowing off minor cardiac symptoms because he’s had them before and nothing came of them. Yikes.

    • harpie says:

      I learn SO MUCH here!

      Thank you!
      Marcy, Rayne, bmaz, Eureka, pdaly
      and ALL the rest of you!
      – harpie

      • Eureka says:

        harpie, I learn so much from YOU that one day my head is going to just *ploof*. I have been meaning to note your kindness, too, and per usual I am behind on life, so please know I always appreciate you.

        And that goes for the rest of y’all (I am about to try another letter to Marcy hoping she is getting mail better now…I don’t think she got my other one, but I didn’t get it back, either).

  33. Eureka says:

    His right facial muscles are slack in that proof-of-life video. It’s subtle, indicating fatigue/tax on his system.

      • Eureka says:

        That’s what I was wondering (because the sense I meant it in, which you understood, is indicating a leak of some pre-existing impairment). [And to be fair, it also resembles what happens post-Bell’s Palsy (local/PNS cranial nerve injury), but given the rest of his (oft-noted) right-sided impairments, parsimony suggests something CNS).]

        Adding: you can occasionally see a little bit of lower facial droop at the “debate”, too (less frequent/more subtle)

        • Eureka says:

          In the realm of fairness I should add one more point: he could of course have a peripheral nerve disease, like an inherited polyneuropathy, or an acquired one, like diabetic neuropathy, and get recurrent signs on the right because of habits (like, say, sleeping on his right side, and attendant pressure injury). He’s also a tall man with long axons (easier for distal injuries to stick).

          This option has occurred to me before.

          But the facial muscles usually don’t get impaired quite like that.

    • Eureka says:

      While I’d readily believe he had dropping sats (and said so yesterday), I find it weird that Meadows is (still) out there lobbying for Trump to be known as “sicker.” What’s up with that?

      • Rayne says:

        Covering the spread. There’s a few ways to play this. If the scuttlebutt is that he’s sicker, people can’t go off on the White House for not warning them and it elicits more sympathy from their base if Trump can continue with his bullshit proof-of-life videos in which he indulges in his messiah complex (“Only I can save us from this virus *cough-cough*”).

        And Meadows himself may be worried about his own ass, but this assumes he’s going rogue on Trump by leaking truer depiction. He could be prepping for Pence hoping he stays on board.

        I’m sure there are other angles — like maybe the miraculous “I’ve saved us from the virus!” after Regeneron and Gilead products have done their work in concert with the finest help our military has at Walter Reed. And then NASDAQ:REGN and NASDAQ:GILD take off like a bat out of hell but not before certain key persons have bought a substantive number of shares.

        • Eureka says:

          So far, I’m leaning towards what you wrote from “And Meadows…” on down. But it all swills together…

        • Eureka says:

          Add to your list of potentials: making Trump (and fam) seem sympathetic to receive a Pence pardon(s) with less outcry (when he has to get briefly 25thed because he is *so sick*: PR/goal two-fer). Discussed this the other day chez nous (him getting a pardon without that last-minute stepping down tactic oft-discussed), took me a minute to click it in with the latest Meadows-ing.

          • Rayne says:

            Ah. Yeah, that. Wondering how far Pence can stretch his playacting? “It was one of the last things he wanted me to handle before they put him under *alligator’s tear* pardon Flynn who had been so mistreated by the judiciary. *sniffle*


            • Eureka says:

              *alligator’s tear* —-> giant laughter burst. Best LOL of the day. That’s like the inverse of when doves cry, I think. (Not to get The Artist involved in all of this ish.)

              Oh great, now the dog’s puking…this day!

  34. pdaly says:

    I had a chance to rewatch via video the news conference by Trump’s medical team earlier today.

    As Tarkeel commented above someone did mention that an oxygen saturation was measured after Trump was walking around. The presentation could be so much clearer if they wanted it to be if they stated Trumps O2 saturation is XX% while seated and XX% after walking 100 yards, for example.

    It took until the Q&A for us to learn the rest of Trump’s vital signs: heart rate, blood pressure, current temperature (still without clarity whether the normal temperature is achieved with or without antipyretics).

    This last point irritates me a lot, because the CDC recommendations for self-isolating or quarantining after a COVID-19 exposure have hammered home to the American public since the pandemic started that they must be fever-free 24 hours without reliance during that time on Tylenol (or NSAIDs such as ibuprofen or naproxen or aspirin) before they can resume interacting with others or return to work.

    Chest CT scans were used in China to rapidly diagnose patients with COVID19 when nasal swabs were taking too long. Protocols in Massachusetts do not include a chest CT because chest X-rays often can show similar opacities.

    Another reason chest CT scans are not routine is the CT scanner room needs to be decontaminated after each sick patient.

    That being said, Trump is not every patient and he most definitely had a chest X-ray and probably a chest CT and not one of the doctors mentioned those results. I only heard about him receiving “ultrasounds” (???)

    The press conference and subsequent updates state Trump is progressing well. What is laughable is that he was doing “so well” this morning, I’m not sure what was left to improve upon. Why is he even in the hospital again?

    • Eureka says:

      Thanks for these comments in review, pdaly. That was perhaps the most irksome press conference for what they said next to what they _didn’t_ say.

    • Rayne says:

      Oops, I missed your comment. Thanks for additional feedback about the earlier presser. There’s just so much that’s not right about it.

    • readerOfTeaLeaves says:

      Actually, I’ve seen videos of heart ultrasounds — absolutely amazing. If it’s what I’m thinking about, they can tell a ton about how a heart is functioning, blood flow: there are examples if you google.

      • P J Evans says:

        I had a lot of fun watching the screen when they were doing one on me. (Yeah, my heart is showing signs of age. Not surprised. I have a copy of the report.)

    • P J Evans says:

      That temp is definitely into “you’re seriously ill” territory.
      For comparison, the chemo people prescribed Cipro for me, with instructions to not take it unless my temp was over 101.5F – fortunately I never needed it.

    • Eureka says:

      Your posting this cued recall of another oddity from yesterday (that’s maybe been resolved): when they listed his meds, there were no statins — yet I thought it was well-known that he is routinely taking one. (And per common protocol, as here, they would certainly not take him _off_ one on entry to Walter Reed.) Did that ever get brought up/ resolved at that presser — I may have missed parts — or in some other release?

      • Rayne says:

        I noticed he was on famotidine but there were no other drugs which suggested he was on it to relieve gastric discomfort — I mean, it could be for the aspirin if he was taking more than 81 mg but why not enteric coated? Unless the “daily aspirin” dosage had been increased for antipyresis because he tolerated it and it wouldn’t look obvious on this list of drugs.

        I wonder if the drugs listed in Conley’s memo reflected what he was taking after admission and not what he was taking before. Were they avoiding a drug interaction?

      • P J Evans says:

        I wondered, because they had him listed as taking famotidine – which is an H2 blocker, an antihistamine and antacid. (In 2018 he was taking “Crestor” (rosuvastatin), according to Dr Ronnie.)

      • Eureka says:

        Rayne & PJ: I took the meds list to be a “COVID-specific” one (but why omit pre-admit or routine ones, esp. ones highly relevant), and took the famotidine (and zinc, melatonin, etc.) mentions as ~ sort of wingnut messaging.

        By ‘~sort-of’ wingnut messaging, I mean that some of that is “sort of NOT” wingnutty: I recall over the summer on the news that some health system (St. Luke’s in NJ, IIRC) was doing a ~ seven drug protocol that included zinc and a few other OTC-/nutritional supplement – type items. _However_, they were using other meds, too, like a statin and/or a blood thinner (not necess a simple or grokked one like aspirin), and other pharma (perhaps dexamethasone).

        So when I read that list yesterday, it came off to me like an upgraded version of “he’s on HCQ”, more a message than a meds list (which was essentially devoid of ‘meds’ but for their not-yet-a-med Regeneron cocktail).

        That is, compared to even places that were running protocols which included non-traditional drugs, they even drained the list of drugs (well, famotidine, but that was also hyped as part of some right-wing messaging this summer)!

        I am certainly personally not ‘against’ things like zinc and vitamin D and so forth. It’s just that that list skirts most protocols — look them up, you won’t find them included — which makes NO SENSE when one is treating the POTUS. (I’ll add, if they _are_ giving him vitamin D, then how much and what’s his blood level: that’s the chief basis of administering it.)

        So, yeah, wingnut messaging. I’ve talked myself out of any “sort of” at this point. POTUS should be getting the best medicine has to offer, so why wasn’t that on Conley’s list?

        On the statin, latest I saw was AP Feb 2019, saying Conley (who had taken over for Dr. Ronnie, on Ronnie’s recommendation) was _increasing_ his Crestor even tho his total had gone down to just under 200 (bad fractionary results), and AP yesterday saying he takes a statin (i.e. just the commonly-know past practice).

        • Eureka says:

          meds list transcribed here (this is the one I was referring to, unknown if a new one released):


          APs cited above:

          October 2, 2020:
          Trump’s age, health woes raise his risk for COVID-19 illness

          February 14, 2019:
          Trump gains weight, now considered obese; cholesterol down

          Adding: see also pdaly 1238am below, famotidine not a standard tx

        • Troutwaxer says:

          Medications give clues to risk factors, and they don’t want anyone to be able to calculate the exact risk/probable date of his death and/or his chances of becoming disabled due to something like post-COVID respiratory disease because that information is of too much strategic value for both political and national security purposes. A sample calculation would be age + sex + hypertension + stroke history = 36%. Numbers are made up, methodology isn’t.

          The confusion about how long he’s had the disease and how he’s been treated might be very deliberate!

          • Eureka says:

            Unfortunately, it’s probably only obscured to the American public. As others have observed — with natsec out this admin’s barn door — foreign hostiles and friendlies alike probably have the accurate info well-“tapped” already.

            Points well-taken, obfuscating is surely what they are up to — it’s just a matter of what else is going on.

            ETA: It’s nice if security is their intention, though they are pretty much shitshowing that just looking around at the comments. They need more clever info managers in charge, ones prone to better turn of medical phrase, I guess.

            • Troutwaxer says:

              >>> “Points well-taken, obfuscating is surely what they are up to — it’s just a matter of what else is going on.”

              Agreed. What’s happening internally will be a mystery, at least until someone else writes a book!

        • P J Evans says:

          I got famotidiine as part of the reaction-control cocktail when I was in chemo. Otherwise, I occasionally use it for heartburn. I’m on atorvastatin, and I’ve also cut back on carbs, which were driving my triglyceride levels. (I can tell the cholesterol is way down: oily hair went away.)

            • P J Evans says:

              It was 1mg of dexamethasone, per the Medicare billing. Not enough to cause problems, and they had a list of everything I was taking already.

          • Eureka says:

            An aside, since you don’t use it daily: I don’t know if your chemo-induced neuropathy is still lingering or reappears at all, but though it worth mentioning that H2 blockers can interfere with manufacture of B12, which can itself cause or exacerbate neuropathy/ – induced muscular weakness. (And the statins and CoQ10 depletion in some, etc. …) (My mom had a heck of a time with meds-induced stuff.)

            • P J Evans says:

              It’s lingering, but it’s improved. It never got to painful, but “numb” isn’t fun, either. Most of the time it isn’t even numb any more. (Fortunately, it’s my left foot, so I can drive.)

              • Eureka says:

                That’s good news, I’m glad to hear it (it’s been awhile since we’d last talked about it, so perhaps not ‘news’ news).

          • pdaly says:

            I’m sorry to hear you had to go through chemo, P J Evans.

            I agree with Eureka about the vitamin B12 deficiency concern with prolonged use of antihistamines. Same is true for prolonged use of PPIs such as omeprazole (Prilosec).

            It’s possible Trump is on famotidine for its acid reflux properties, especially if he is eating fast food all the time..

            • P J Evans says:

              That ended more than a year ago – it was every three weeks, so not a big load on the system.
              I do take vitamins – just the regular kind – but I have some B12 if needed. Next bloodwork is coming up, and I send the results to my primary-care guy, so if he wants to change something, he can.

  35. pdaly says:

    My comment might have been lost or is stuck in moderation.
    Was going to point out inpatient protocols categorize COVID19 patients into disease severity categories and then look at risk factors for likelihood for disease progression:

    COVID19 disease severity:
    mild (symptoms but no dyspnea or abnormal imaging (i.e., chest X-ray or chest CT scan)
    moderate (lower respiratory disease (i.e., abnormal chest X-ray) with O2 sat > 94$ on room air, a normal oxygenation level)
    Severe: O2 sat less than or equal to 94%, or
    Critical (ICU) –likely low blood pressure, rapid heart rate, showing difficulty of breathing or low oxygen levels not responding to supplemental oxygen.

    So requiring supplemental oxygen places a patient into the SEVERE category, which his WH physician knows.

    The PDF I linked to (above) lists current risk factors associated with disease progression.

    There are some reports indicating a protective effect of famotidine against COVID19, but I haven’t heard that it is a standard treatment.

    Not sure why a statin pill is not listed on Trump’s medication list.

  36. Hug h says:

    So VERY weary of the transparently obvious conman and his minions.
    Maybe Jung was right, we witness an unfolding which reflects our current development.
    Painful for those aware of the Con.

    Here’s a conspiracy/archetype-
    Trump miraculously recovers from Covid-

    Revelation 13:3, NIV: “One of the heads of the beast seemed to have had a fatal wound, but the fatal wound had been healed. The whole world was filled with wonder and followed the beast.”

    Delivered by “Christians” following false prophets.

    “Turning and turning in the widening gyre
    The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
    Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
    Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
    The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
    The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
    The best lack all conviction, while the worst
    Are full of passionate intensity.

    Surely some revelation is at hand;
    Surely the Second Coming is at hand.
    The Second Coming! Hardly are those words out
    When a vast image out of Spiritus Mundi
    Troubles my sight: somewhere in sands of the desert
    A shape with lion body and the head of a man,
    A gaze blank and pitiless as the sun,
    Is moving its slow thighs, while all about it
    Reel shadows of the indignant desert birds.
    The darkness drops again; but now I know
    That twenty centuries of stony sleep
    Were vexed to nightmare by a rocking cradle,
    And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
    Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?”
    – W. B. Yeats

  37. klynn says:

    Kind of sad at that this covid diagnosis hit this week. Marcy made discoveries this week that are groundbreaking and should get more attention. Thank you Marcy for shining light on Flynn, and folks not working for the best interests of our nation.

    • Hika says:

      Hear, hear!
      And to add a speculation of my own: a year hence, AG Barr and his minions, along with Flynn and Powell, will think Marcie’s work far more important than anything Trump’s doctors will do between now and election day.

      • quebecois says:

        I think we’re sharing just about the same feelings.

        With the rise of the Tea Party, all those years ago, I noticed a surge in right wing propaganda and lies flooding my part of the world. It’s never been worse. Our patriotic conspiracy theorists are QAnon fans too. Everything that happens in the States filters down to our crazies.

        Trump ending up at Walter Reed, being fed contradictory news from the administration and then that weird news conference by his medical team… We know they’re all lying because that’s what they’ve been doing since the inauguration, that crowd size comes to mind. I’m scared shitless for you guys, and that extend to us in Québec.

        Pure insanity.

        • Eureka says:

          Yikes, then where we gonna go? [Not that you’re letting us in anyway… ] I have family there from a branch that stayed, one was at McGill, I remember (not much of a clue to go on, lol… my mom knew all that stuff).

          • P J Evans says:

            I have distant cousins in Canada – so does my sis-in-law. But neither of us qualify based on that. Lots of people crossed that border, in both directions.

  38. Blueride27 says:

    What about the lasting cognitive effects of having a low O2 level?
    Shouldn’t the public be aware that the “Stable genius” is now damaged goods?

    • Rayne says:

      Just dawned on me we’d be treated to weeks of more “person woman man camera tv” if he’s given another test of his cognitive skills and then questioned about it.


  39. harpie says:

    Speaking of the Amy Coney Barrett nomination Super Spreader Event
    -aka Republican Red Wedding [?],
    maybe it’s a metaphor for the
    FEDERALIST SOCIETY spreading of REACTIONARY [??? I can’t think of words this morning…NOT “jurisprudence”]]

    Marcy retweeted this from Jesuit priest James Martin SJ:

    6:22 AM · Oct 4, 2020

    Breaking: Pope Francis closes the door on the death penalty in new encyclical #FratelliTutti.
    Catholics must work for its abolition. With comments by Sr. Helen Prejean: [link]
    Church teaching has now definitively changed on this issue. See article for how this happened. [link]

    Links to:
    Pope Francis closes the door on the death penalty in ‘Fratelli Tutti’
    James Martin, S.J. October 04, 2020

    • harpie says:

      John Garvey is president of the Catholic University of America. He is a former dean of the Boston College Law School and a former president of the Association of American Law Schools. BIO: https://www.catholic.edu/about-us/leadership/bios/john-garvey/index.html

      When Barrett was nominated, Garvey wrote in WaPo:

      I taught and worked with Amy Coney Barrett. Here’s what people get wrong about her faith.
      September 25, 2020 at 7:49 p.m.

      […] I hired the future judge as my research assistant. It was in that capacity that she co-wrote with me a 1998 Marquette Law Review article on Catholic judges and the death penalty — the article that stirred controversy during the confirmation hearing for her current position on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 7th Circuit in September 2017.

      That article, for the record, made an argument almost exactly opposite to what Barrett’s critics claimed. We argued that recusal would be the appropriate course of action for a Catholic judge who felt that his or her religious beliefs were in conflict with upholding the law.

      It would hardly be reasonable to hold Barrett responsible for everything we said back then, when she was still a law student and the junior partner in the endeavor. But we made a perfectly sensible case — one that is in fact recommended by the federal recusal statute. […]

      I wonder how they will respond to Pope Francis’s new encyclical.

        • harpie says:

          Seems big…right?

          Can you help me think of a word to go at the end of the following phrase [from my first comment above]?
          Not being able to find one is kind of freaking me out. Thanks!

          FEDERALIST SOCIETY spreading of REACTIONARY [???]

            • What Constitution? says:

              “Dogma” didn’t jump out for me, though it certainly works. But upon seeing it, “cat piss” comes to my mind as a more appropriate summary of Federalist Society machinations these days. I like dogs too much, I guess.

              Now back to waiting for the presser that was scheduled to start half an hour ago at Walter Reed. I guess they’re still fiddling with the oxygen before taking the podium, or being lectured by Meadows about trying not to make obvious tells when they’re lying.

            • Savage Librarian says:

              We are all in such deep doo doo because of their stinky dogma. BTW, I love dogs. Cats, too. And birds and bees. Not all human, though.

        • Eureka says:

          Yeah, the immediate reaction against Pope Francis’ election really showed what Bannon et al. were up to. Schism indeed.

    • harpie says:

      Martin writes:

      In “Fratelli Tutti,” the pope grounds his opposition to capital punishment not only in mercy, perhaps his most characteristic spiritual theme, but also in opposition to revenge. “Fear and resentment can easily lead to viewing punishment in a vindictive and even cruel way, rather than as part of a process of healing and reintegration into society,” he writes.

      For some reason The Pope writing in opposition to revenge, made me think of Trump and of Billy Barr’s recent speeches.

      I remembered that Marcy had written posts after each of these, so searched for “Barr + speech” [I know…not the best search terms…but my best at the time :-{ ]. Anyway…it would have been MUCH faster if I had thought to search for
      “Barr + SCREED”. LOL!

  40. Raven Eye says:

    It’s been reported that at Trump’s hospital “proof of life” taping, he apparently was shown signing a blank piece of paper — evidence that he was on the job.

    With regard to the “document’s” content, how is that different from most of his EOs and Presidential Memoranda?

    • Chris.EL says:

      Think it was on Marcy’s emptywheel Twitter link to info on meta data in the photos; 10 minute gap.

      Where’s Rose Mary when you need a good stretch!

    • Chris.EL says:

      Found the tweet, Marcy noticed an out of place reflection on the desk too…

      …” emptywheel Retweeted
      Jon Ostrower
      The photos released by the WH tonight of the president working at Walter Reed were taken 10 minutes apart at 5:25:59 pm and 5:35:40 pm ET Saturday, according to the EXIF data embedded in both
      wire postings that were shared by the White House this evening.
      9:52 PM · Oct 3, 2020″ …

  41. pdaly says:

    I missed most of the press conference today that was playing in the background on CNN a few minutes ago. I thought it was a rebroadcast of yesterday’s briefing, so I may have missed critical details.

    In any case, when Trump, as a COVID19 patient, experienced an episode of hypoxia (O2 sat below 94%) on Friday this placed him in the SEVERE category of COVID19 patients.
    Was the duration of hypoxia minutes? hours?

    Obviously a chest X-ray, at a minimum, would be necessary to help the phalanx of pulmonary & critical care doctors figure out the possible causes of hypoxia including:

    a reaction to the experimental infusion of monoclonal antibody?

    inflammation of the lungs due to progression to severe COVID19 infection?

    a simple mucus plug? (A mucus plug would cause temporary desaturations, and, upon enough coughing to release the mucus, the O2 saturation could quickly return to normal without need for continued supplemental oxygenation)

    a life threatening pulmonary embolism?
    (An acute blood clot is often visible on a chest CT. A normal range D-dimer blood test would be reassuring that there is no pulmonary embolism. An elevated D-dimer is present with a pulmonary embolism, but the D-dimer is elevated with COVID19, too. The fact that the pulmonologists are standing mutely by at these press conferences and no one is even mentioning the result of a simple chest X-ray makes me think Trump could have more than just patchy opacities common with COVID19 disease. Did Trump need an intervention for a pulmonary embolism?).

    a heart attack? (CPK levels and troponin blood levels would be elevated, and Trump would need repeated ECHOs of the heart. An ECHO, never mind repeat ECHOs would not be necessary for the average patient with COVID19 that is mild or moderate. However, usual protocols are likely not applied to someone who is US President).

    • Hika says:

      I’m no expert, but I did pick up that the experimental therapy that Trump was given was not “monoclonal antibody” but a polyclonal antibody mixture.
      Just checked – Latest reporting seems to be that Trump’s Regeneron treatment contained two monoclonal lines, hence polyclonal in the most minimal of ways.

      • P J Evans says:

        That stuff is pricy – as in the billing to Medicare for the two I got in chemo was in six figures. (No, Medicare doesn’t pay as much as they were billed. I got to pay a chunk of it, but not anywhere like that much. Worked, though.)

    • Chris.EL says:

      Trump is suffering from terminal trumpitis.

      I like to stay away from hospitals — especially now!

    • Eureka says:

      Another thing you’d be interested in: Conley at one point said Trump’s kidney and liver (labs vs studies, forget which word/equivalent) were normal *or improving*, he leaked out. That’s a reg flag.

      I’d said above that the press needs to ask about _method_ of O2 delivery, too, because that tells a lot about condition [e.g. whether nasal cannula is sufficient, vs requires non-rebreather (or other methods)], besides the amount and length of time used.

  42. pdaly says:

    Discussion on CNN after the press conference states Trump is on dexamethasone now.

    Most COVID19 protocols reserve dexamethasone for later periods of a patient’s COVID19 infection, NOT at the beginning of one’s COVID19 infection. Receiving steroids early in the course of COVID19 is associated with worse outcomes.

    Again this puts the timeline of the start of Trump’s COVID19 infection into question.

    In addition, dexamethasone is usually given only when a patient is having trouble with cytokines and/or difficulty with oxygenation.

    Trump is now on dexamethasone (suggesting he’s much sicker than the average COVID19 patient), so why is Trump’s doctor suggesting Trump might be discharged to the WH as early as tomorrow?!

    • P J Evans says:

      Either he’s in worse shape than they’re willing to admit in public, or they’re using the “kitchen sink” approach with drugs that seem to help others.

      • Troutwaxer says:

        I’m sure Dr. Conley has read all the relevant papers, but realistically, he’s got less experience treating COVID-19 than the average New York ER physician not to mention the least cooperative patient anyone could ever want! In terms of what he says to the press, he’s got Trump, plus the whole national security apparatus breathing down his neck. I don’t envy the dude!

        So yes, your “kitchen sink” comment is very relevant!

    • Rayne says:

      The presser isn’t for us. It’s for Trump. That’s why we hear excessively optimistic happy talk, because the condition of the audience of one relies on his reaction to what he sees on television. They’re saying he might be discharged tomorrow to keep his mood elevated; if they’re dealing with a patient who’s mental acuity is questionable, worsened by the progress of the disease, and potentially dealing with withdrawal at the same time, it’s not surprising they’re bullshitting him. Unfortunately all of us out here are treated to the same bullshit.

      The media haven’t yet caught on that the real presser was Mark Meadows’ yesterday, which Meadows was too rattled to handle with the care it needed to be off-the-record and received by Trump as only rumor. I have to wonder what happened immediately before yesterday’s presser and if it explains why the presser was nearly 40 minutes late.

      The admission today that dexamethasone has been started is the clincher. Trump wasn’t getting better and they moved to the next step in the current protocol which you recognize.

      As for timing of his infection and course of illness: I think we need to look at Trump as the possible super spreader at the Barrett event, possibly infected by Ronna Romney McDaniel, Hope Hicks, or someone else before the Barrett event.

      • Duke says:

        I trust one thing about Trump. Every thing is a distraction. The truth he utters is half-truth and everything else serves a singularity-like soul.

        Trump is the blackhole in the center of our national universe.

        I think it is possible Trump has been infected for a longer period of time. The avoidance of pre-debate Covid screening allows for that suspicion.

        At the end of the day, I hope his health improves.

        • ducktree says:

          That is a deliciously graphic metaphor you’ve drawn, Duke. And now that black hole is perhaps rushing toward its own event horizon. It’s quite a viral spiral!

      • Eureka says:

        Yes & this reminds me of another aspect of that Meadows clip PJ had linked last night: “Judge Jeanine” was stone cold sober and _not_ having Meadows’ deviations from the script (so at least we know Murdoch’s not ready for a power transition yet, or an unhappy Trump — whichever). She prodded him back in line so overtly that one would think her audience need swim in boxes o wine to miss it. But then again, they are narcotized by Fox.

      • pdaly says:

        Good points Rayne and Rosalind.
        Eureka, I find that interesting that Dr. Conley may be telegraphing once inauspicious information while maintaining a smile and a yes-he-can attitude for his TV watching patient. It was not another accidental release of truth this time, unlike the timeline information that occurred with yesterday’s press conference?

        Perhaps we should have a public forum channel that we can turn to and that Trump doesn’t watch so that press briefings can occasionally dispense with keeping a boy man entertained and we citizens can be properly informed.

    • General Sternwood says:

      So “he may be released as early as tomorrow,” coupled with “we’re going back to the WH!” suggests to me they are worried about a palace coup of some kind. Meadows’ spilling the beans on the severity of the illness probably feeds into that.

      There is no medical indication for leaving the hospital — especially if the dexamethasone story is true, because that is contraindicated in cases of mild disease, per Ashish K. Jha.

      Trump’s rapid progression supports the idea that he was exposed nine days ago meeting Ronna McDaniel, who then went into isolation the next day because a family member was suspected of having Covid. Then Trump has had it for a much longer time and may have brought it to the indoor meetings around the “Rose Garden” event, the debate prep, the debate, and — even after Hope Hicks, and a rapid test on Wednesday, Bedminster on Thursday. If the rapid test was positive they could have pretended it was a false positive — which would make sense of the physician statements by Conley (diagnosed “72 hours” ago ergo midday Wednesday) and Garibaldi (Trump had received a dose of an experimental antibody therapy “about 48 hours ago,” which would have been around midday Thursday). Conley later said he misspoke, but the timeline given by two doctors independently only makes sense if there was a positive test result before the “official timeline” that the positive PCR test was only known late Thursday.

      • General Sternwood says:

        Oh, and one more timeline-related observation.

        McDaniel reportedly stopped traveling with the campaign on Saturday, and reported a positive test Wednesday. Often people are told to wait five days after possible exposure since there are false negatives early, so a scenario that fits with the Saturday isolation is that a family member tests positive Friday or Saturday and begins quarantine. McDaniel waits five days and gets her positive test Wednesday. If McDaniel is asymptomatic then I’m sure they made this choice to wait because it was least likely to disrupt the campaign, but was arguably within protocols.

        A White House that still has not done contact tracing on this huge outbreak, of course was interested in covering up positives rather than tracing them. “Stay home, Ronna, and don’t tell anyone that you were on AF1 and are now isolating!” was perhaps the order that she was given.

      • rosalind says:

        i took the “may be released as early as tomorrow” as a way of calming the morning stock market bell, and pacifying the Patient-In-Chief.

        • Rayne says:

          Except the market will likely open down-ish anyhow because of the bigger economic picture and stay down as it becomes more obvious the administration is lying about Trump’s condition.

          If they did anything with this apart from appeasing Trump, it was allowing somebody extra time to hedge their positions.

          Maybe in time for opening of the MICEX, DAX, FTSE, and CAC.

  43. Savage Librarian says:

    Anecdotally, I know someone who seems to have had a reduction in chronic pain after a suspected bout of Covid 19. I know several other people who were not so fortunate.

    The following article examines another aspect of the virus that may be relevant, particularly to being asymptomatic. And it could also contribute to inappropriate happy talk.

    “Can COVID-19 Actually Lead to a Breakthrough in Pain Relief?” – Sep. 29, 2020 – Rajesh Khanna, The Conversation


      • Rayne says:

        He is absolutely desperate not to appear as if he’s not in control and might need to turn the reins over to Pence.

        Or he’s desperate to prop up the stock market and the value of NASDAQ:REGN and NASDAQ:GILD.

        • Worried says:

          He bases his economic acumen on the condition of the stock market, always bragging about how it is so high due to his “policies”.

          I am sure this “motorcade” was designed to calm the markets, so there will not be a dive on Monday.

          The people who had to ride with him? Potential collateral damage, nothing more.

          Oh, on Bob Gibson; how good do you have to be to change the dimensions of the major leagues’ baseball diamond? As stated somewhere, they lowered the mound because of his dominance. That says it about his pitching prowess.

        • ducktree says:

          Haaar! Next thing we know, Conley will be introducing propofol to the formula..

          Weekend at Donnie’s indeed!

          I may need supplemental oxygen before I laugh myself unconscious (which almost happened at a performance of Book of Mormon… luckily I had an seat on the aisle).

          • P J Evans says:

            I remember laughing until my sides hurt, back in 1978, when a friend told me – over the phone, and long distance – about another person we knew who had gotten a large “Darth Vader” mug, and all I could think of was the mug filled with daisies. ISTR it took at least five minutes before the two of us stopped laughing.

      • pdaly says:

        LOL. When I heard that he was in a caravan I thought he had left the hospital AMA (against medical advice).

        I wonder if Trump got a hall pass from his doctor(s) to do a little drive-by to wave to his TV audience.

  44. rosalind says:

    * I think Ivanka and Jared badly miscalculated on this drive-by stunt. Will wager on major blowback from all sides of the political spectrum.

    * Interesting that Bill Barr is now going into “voluntary” self-quarantine while still claiming negative Covid-19 tests.

    • ducktree says:

      Grainy video ~ using the same body-dybbuk as when he’s been feeling too slogged (or otherwise engaged) for the golf course: masked and wearing enough mascara camouflage aided by a quick getaway … my $0.02.

    • pdaly says:

      Barr to self-quarantine? I wonder if he meant self-isolate?

      Based on those photos of him massless, I’d be surprised if he managed to avoid catching COVD-19 at the WH Rose Garden ceremony.

    • Ewan says:

      he is self-isolating /self-quarantining from one man only. Terrified by Trump’s stunt at the WH, he doesn’t want to be infected, and to avoid having to say no to the boss, he says he is isolating from “everybody”.

  45. skua says:

    Nine months late, and two hundred thousand American lives lost due to that lateness, Trump claims in his pre-driveby video that having COVID himself means he “really understands” COVID, that having COVID is the “real school”, “the read the books school”.

    This is leadership that has got many people injured and killed.

    And Trump’s popularity is climbing on fivethirtyeight.

      • ducktree says:

        And he also emphasized that he’d been schooled on COVID-19 by this experience, but not the “book reading” kind of school – or some such rubbish.

        The president*’s pathos logos ethos continues apace.

  46. Savage Librarian says:

    I wonder if it’s harder or easier for DT to communicate with Putin at Walter Reed.

    And who is taking turns sitting at the Resolute desk while DT is gone?

  47. ducktree says:

    разговаривар … someone who can be a fluent “talker” is my guess (pronounced: razgovarivar).

    Two years of high school Russian (vintage 1969) finally pays off!.

    [I previously posted this but misspelled my name ~ so deleted it.]

  48. P J Evans says:

    WH has release two photos of him sitting in the conference room at WR, with the claim that it was taken today and that he was on a call with Pence, Pompeo, and Milley.

    Also, he claimed that he was bored in his fancy suite, because the only stuff on TV was about him in the hospital. (I’d think that he’d be happy, because it’s All About Him.)

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