No GOP convention?

As just about everybody probably knows by now, the First Felon has demanded that North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper ‘guarantee‘ that there will be no restrictions upon gathering during the GOP convention in Charlotte next August.

President Trump on Monday threatened to yank the Republican National Convention from Charlotte, N.C., where it is scheduled to be held in August, accusing the state’s Democratic governor of being in a “shutdown mood” that could prevent a fully attended event.

The president tweeted that he had “LOVE” for North Carolina, a swing state that he won in 2016, but he added that without a “guarantee” from the governor, Roy Cooper, that the event could be held at full capacity, “we would be spending millions of dollars building the Arena to a very high standard without even knowing if the Democrat Governor would allow the Republican Party to fully occupy the space.”

Here are the tweets.

Several thoughts, in no particular order:

  • This is empty bluster. Anybody who has ever organized a wedding knows that months of planning are needed to put together even a modest-sized event involving a few dozens of people from disparate locations. To suppose that he can summarily move the convention without major disruption of the event is preposterous on its face; some of the hotel and restaurant reservations were made, literally, more than a year ago.

  • Cooper cannot responsibly satisfy Trump’s demand. Indeed, this state’s confirmed number of cases is still going up.

  • Trump’s demand is irresponsible and hypocritical. After all, the First Felon has encouraged defiance of lockdown orders and, by his (very bad) example, continues to flout his contempt for the minimal steps needful to arresting the spread of Covid-19.

  • Undoubtedly, Trump knows that the GOP convention is certain to be the target of anti-Trump demonstrations, that his popularity is in decline, and that the best people in his party feel some ambiguity about being seen as close to him.

I am sure that Trump would prefer to forgo the bother of the convention and simply be anointed by acclamation. After all, it’s hardly as if he has any interest in associating with the Republican delegates; he despises them. So I suspect this is theater for the morons who love to see their boy acting tough, but that it tracks pretty closely to his own preferences. There will probably be a gloomy, desultory fizzle of a convention, in Charlotte, in rightful anticipation of November’s beheading.

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Coulter turns on Trump

Ann Coulter has good antennae, and wouldn’t publicly turn on Trump unless she were hearing a lot of criticism of him from the Right. If it signals that his base has finally — FINALLY! — had enough, this is very good news.

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(War-)Gaming the November election

As long ago as the first year of the Trump administration, I made the prediction that he would resist leaving office, that he would act to somehow ‘suspend’ the election or simply refuse to acknowledge defeat. I claim no special prescience; that’s what authoritarians do.

What do you know? I’m not the only person who is worried about this.

In October, President Trump declares a state of emergency in major cities in battleground states, like Milwaukee and Detroit, banning polling places from opening.

A week before the election, Attorney General William P. Barr announces a criminal investigation into the Democratic presidential nominee, Joseph R. Biden Jr.

After Mr. Biden wins a narrow Electoral College victory, Mr. Trump refuses to accept the results, won’t leave the White House and declines to allow the Biden transition team customary access to agencies before the Jan. 20 inauguration.

Far-fetched conspiracy theories? Not to a group of worst-case scenario planners …

Can anybody, anywhere, imagine such contingency planning being needful under any previous president? Not me, and I’m glad there are some people in important places who recognize the danger — because I am certain the sycophantic whores who surround Trump recognize the opportunity.

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Quote for the day

The genetic sequence of SARS-CoV-2 rules out a lab-engineered virus. And although escape from a lab of a naturally occurring virus that was isolated from bat specimens collected by scientists cannot be completely eliminated as the origin, the closest laboratory version of the virus (published by Shi and collaborators) is separated from SARS-CoV-2 by at least 20 years of evolutionary time.

Science Magazine

And that, it seems to me, ought to be that: Covid-19 is a naturally-evolved and –occurring virus.

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Disheartening tweet of the day

Anybody who has paid even modest attention to the news over the past couple of months knows that churches have been the locus of countless outbreaks; if the resurgence of Covid-19 needs a boost, it looks as if the Pious are going to provide it. Truly, there is no such thing as protecting morons from natural selection.

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