VOTE for your Favorite Blog Post of 2020!

It seems like the right time to reassess. The R&R blog has enjoyed increased attention and readership in 2020. Here is a yearly count of clicks (views). Note that 2020 is not yet quite over.

Here are the leading posts, namely those with the highest numbers of views:

1. 836 views. Voter Outreach 2020 – Postcards To Voters Posted on July 24, 2020 by bwfloyd

2. 742 views. If Stephen Hawking is right about Earth’s end, keep an eye on the deer. Posted on May 9, 2017 by bcolbath42

3. 409 views. Advice from a New York City ICU Doc Posted on March 30, 2020 by D. Posnett MD

4. 344 views Vote NO on Proposal #2. Posted on October 10, 2020 by D. Posnett MD

5. 341 views Where Were You Lee Zeldin? Posted on March 27, 2020 by D. Posnett MD

6. 224 views Lowe’s or Home Depot? Your call. Posted on June 10, 2020 by D. Posnett MD

7. 218 views Why is COVID-19 Testing Important? Posted on March 29, 2020 by D. Posnett MD

8. 200 views. Prop #1: Yes or No? Posted on October 20, 2020 by D. Posnett MD

9. 187 views. Exposing Lee Zeldin’s Record on Healthcare Posted on March 5, 2020 by D. Posnett MD

10. 158 views. The Psychology of Trump Supporters. Posted on July 10, 2019 by D. Posnett MD

In total 845 posts have been published on this blog. 170 were posted since January 2020:

  1. Ways to Help in Georgia
  2. Georgia on my Mind
  3. SARS-CoV-2 mink-associated variant strain
  4. Honking and Cheering in NY City
  5. Trump’s Base: 2 Anecdotal Cases Regarding Sources of News
  6. Threatening rallies by Trump supporters
  7. Encouraged
  8. The Days After Election Day
  9. Poll Watching in Pennsylvania
  10. The People PAC: Flipping Statehouses
  11. Are we Ready?
  12. YAY! I voted!
  13. Caravans in Suffolk County
  14. How Masks Matter
  15. Prop #1: Yes or No?
  16. Pennsylvania: the Key Battleground
  17. Living a Double Life
  18. Zeldin’s complete Environmental Record
  19. Trump’s chearleader: Lee Zeldin
  20. Schedule of Local Debates
  21. Lawn Sign Thefts
  22. Vote NO on Proposal #2
  23. Voters Should Not Be Intimidated
  24. Trump Is Killing Us
  25. The Home Stretch
  26. Republicans don’t like Teslas
  27. Trump’s Economic Fallout
  28. Trumpty Dumpty Blues
  29. What are Trump’s chances?
  30. NY State Senators under Attack
  31. Vote Him Out
  32. Amy Klobuchar: the Cruz Hypocrisy regarding SCOTUS
  33. Is it Fascism yet?
  34. Flip the Senate
  35. 200,000 Deaths….and Counting
  36. Rigged Elections?
  37. Something you can do for RBG
  38. Pence staffer calls out Trump, endorses Biden
  39. Letter from Dr. Norbert regarding COVID-19
  40. Social Security Under Attack
  41. Trump and Zeldin Have Got to Go
  42. Early Voting
  43. Trump lied. Americans died.
  44. Mosquito Samples and Birds Test Positive for West Nile Virus
  45. We have been warned.
  46. Pandemic: How did Trump’s America Screw up?
  47. Trump’s Science Denialism
  48. Sowed Discord
  49. SPLC under attack
  50. Join Etsy in standing with the United States Postal Service
  51. #SaveThePostOffice Rally in East Hampton
  52. #SaveThePostOffice
  53. Lee Zeldin’s Confederate Statues
  54. COVID-19 – US is only industrialized country without a national policy
  55. Undermining the U.S. Postal Service to Rig the Election
  56. Fancy Fundraiser
  57. Who’s Funding @RepLeeZeldin ?
  58. Notes from a Covid Doc
  59. Irresponsible!
  60. Voter Outreach 2020 – Postcards To Voters
  61. Make Trump and Zeldin Pay a Political Price
  62. Changing her mind on Medicare for All
  63. Unity Party 2020
  64. Stepien or Parscale? The Corona virus does not care.
  65. They Live in this Country. God Help Us.
  66. Out of His Depth
  67. Complete Lee Zeldin Environmental Voting Record
  68. Zeldin’s Blind Allegiance to Trump
  69. The Scale of Testing Compared to the Scale of the Outbreak
  70. Lee Zeldin Promoting Massive COVID Super-spreader Event
  71. Early Voting in Suffolk County, NY
  72. Voting for Delegates
  73. Don’t Waste This Moment
  74. Lee Zeldin’s Record
  75. Lowe’s or Home Depot? Your call.
  76. Anxiety, or A Day in the Life of a Covid-Vulnerableq
  77. Huge Crowd in Bridgehampton: Justice for Floyd
  78. Recipe for Fundamental Social Change (from Judith Hope)
  79. Protesting the Callous Murder of George Floyd right here in Bridgehampton
  80. George Floyd, Minneapolis Protests, Ahmaud Arbery & Amy Cooper
  81. Virtual Forum: 8 hours and 46 minutes
  82. “I Can’t Breathe”
  83. Protest in Commack drawing criticism
  84. Children with Coronavirus Produce the Same Amount of Virus as Adults
  85. The $20 Murder
  86. Is the healthcare “free market” working for you?
  87. Rampant Asymptomatic COVID-19 in a Homeless Shelter
  88. Is the East End ‘Open for Business’ as Usual?
  89. Voting in the Pandemic Era: Safety First.
  90. Zeldin’s Anti-Vaxxer Donor
  91. encorecommunityservices
  92. Law and Order: not for Zeldin and Flynn
  93. Ignorance is Not Bliss
  94. We Got to Work Together
  95. Visiting New York City
  96. COVID is Much Much Worse than the Flu
  97. Lee Zeldin is Congratulating Himself
  98. The Suffolk “BOE” Commissioner Must Resign
  99. When the Forgotten Remain Forgotten, no one is Secure
  100. How We Got Here
  101. Labradoodle dog breeder heads HHS response to the coronavirus
  102. I am Pissed off!
  103. How Fast is the Coronavirus spreading?
  104. #Votebymail
  105. Finally, Biden speaks out
  106. We’re all in this together, dear Earth Day
  107. Children as Likely to Get Coronavirus as Adults, but Don’t Get Sick.
  108. No Surprise
  109. Are we Failing our Seniors by not Providing COVID-19 Testing?
  110. Dr. Norbert’s Notes
  111. Slap in the Face of New Yorkers
  112. Coronavirus Kills Men More than Women. Why?
  113. Federal Formula for Stimulus Aid to Hospitals Punishes New York State 
  114. Zoom Time
  115. Is the Curve Flattening in NY City?
  116. Cytokine storm in COVID-19 patients that do poorly?
  117. Trump Approval and Consumer Confidence since COVID-19
  118. 4 Bests
  119. How Insurers are Covering COVID-19
  120. Warning from the Virologists
  121. The Case for Masks
  122. Quaranteam
  123. Mike Francesa’s takedown of Donald Trump: ‘Treat this like the crisis it is’
  124. Kinsa’s thermometers
  125. “She didn’t deserve to die this way”
  126. From London: If you are over 65 with COVID-19, good luck
  127. Fox News Coverage is Dangerous
  128. Advice from a New York City ICU Doc
  129. Why is COVID-19 Testing Important?
  130. Where Were You Lee Zeldin?
  131. How to Handle Food and Groceries Coming in to Your Home
  132. #StaytheFuckHome
  133. The Way Forward: Testing for Antibodies to Coronavirus
  134. COVID-19 in Suffolk County
  135. Immune Response in COVID-19 Leading to Disease Resolution
  136. Magic Wand Needed!
  137. Dire Report from Epicenter Bergamo
  138. South Korea: Aggressive COVID-19 Strategies
  139. Doctors Feeling Outrage
  140. Trump Shirks Responsibility
  141. The Terminology of Keeping Distance
  142. The Economic Impact of the Virus
  143. COVID-19: What is the Best Mitigation Strategy?
  144. Logarithmic Progression of COVID-19 Creates a Problem
  145. The Cry for National Leadership
  146. Hospital Beds Will Run Out
  147. Velocity of COVID-19 spread
  148. State of Emergency: COVID-19
  149. COVID-19 disease modelling
  150. Still no COVID testing available?
  151. Trump’s Incompetence
  152. Census 2020
  153. Why do many British people not like Donald Trump?
  154. COVID-19 is here!
  155. Sanders’ Vaporware
  156. Exposing Lee Zeldin’s Record on Healthcare
  157. COVID-19: just a bad flu?
  158. Septic Taxation: The Zeldin Tax?
  159. Deregulation Gone Amok
  160. Trump’s Sabotage of Healthcare
  161. Getting a good look at Mike Bloomberg
  162. Zeldin Still Thinks President Did Nothing Wrong
  163. Bolton and Zeldin: it is comical!
  164. Curb Drug Costs: Makes Sense For All
  165. Debunking Anti-Vaxxers
  166. Plastic Pollution of the Oceans
  167. Trump: I will “Negotiate Like Crazy”
  168. Why Start a War with Iran? Trump in his own Words…
  169. Anti-science Movements
  170. Climate and Real Estate
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Ways to Help in Georgia

Jon Ossoff
Reverend Raphael Warnock

From Diane Saatchi:


Did you know there are 23,000 young people in Georgia who were not old enough to vote in the November 3rd election but will be for the January 5th runoff? It’s true! We need to get those young people registered to vote! I encourage you to donate to and/or volunteer with the following Georgia organizations who focus on voter registration:

The New Georgia Project

Black Voters Matter


Sign up with Warnock’s campaign HERE

Find an Ossoff volunteer event HERE

Sign up to volunteer with Georgia Victory HERE (You can pick from options such as texting, phone banking, literature drops, share their message online, or become a community leader)

Sign up to volunteer with Fair Fight HERE — they provide some training! (Choose between being a poll worker, line warmer, phone banker, or text banker.)


Postcards to Voters is gearing up for a GA campaign. Check back HERE

Postcards to Swing States will be starting a GA campaign soon. Check back HERE

Vote Forward will start a GA letter writing campaign soon. Sign up HERE

The Georgia Postcard Project is a grassroots initiative where you can write postcards they supply to register Democrats in Georgia about the importance of the runoff races, as well as share information about early and mail-in voting. Learn about it HERE


Fair Fight text or phone banking HERE

Reclaim Our Vote text or phone banking HERE

Flip the West phone banking HERE

Warnock campaign phone bank HERE

Ossoff campaign phone bank HERE


Rev. Rafael Warnock  Twitter,  Facebook

Jon Ossoff  Twitter,  Facebook

Fair Fight  Twitter,  Facebook

New Georgia Project  Twitter,  Facebook

Georgia Democrats  Twitter,  Facebook

And of course….


Funding the candidates directly as well as the amazing grassroots organizations who flipped the state blue for Biden is of the upmost importance. If you can give, please give. If you can’t, consider sharing these links on your social media accounts.

Donate to Warnock & Ossoff’s campaigns HERE

Donate to Warnock, Ossoff, and Stacey Abrams’ Fair Fight HERE

Win Both Seats – Donate HERE with one click to donate directly to 16 POC-led, grassroots organizations in Georgia. 

HERE is an amazing list of 40 voting/election related organizations in Georgia. It includes their website, the link to donate, plus links to their social media accounts.

Latino Community Fund of Georgia is included in the list linked above but shown HERE to highlight the need for both donations and volunteers.

Also, there is an online fundraising event for Warnock and Ossoff being held on November 17th with special guest Stacey Abrams. You can get tickets for as low as $54. Once you donate, you’ll get the Zoom link in your confirmation email. Sign up HERE

Posted in 2020 elections, democrats, US senate | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Georgia on my Mind

A classic: In 2003, Rolling Stone magazine named the Ray Charles version of “Georgia on My Mind” the 44th greatest song of all time.

OK. We can either listen to this classic… or get active… or both!

Joe Biden continues to pick up votes in Georgia after clinching the presidency.

According to News Staff. Updated November 9, 2020 – 4:55 PM

Vice President-Elect Joe Biden holds a lead of 10,195 votes over President Donald Trump in Georgia as ballots continue to trickle in.

There are insufficient outstanding votes to overturn these results and a recount is unlikely to do so either.

All eyes are now on Georgia as the state prepares for two crucial Senate races that could determine the balance of power in Washington.

Kelly Loeffler is slated for a runoff with Raphael Warnock and David Perdue will face Democratic challenger Jon Ossoff on January 5.

Below is information included in today’s Hubbell newsletter about ways to work for the democratic candidates in the senate runoff elections in Georgia in January.  

The Georgia Senate Races.         Per an interview with Stacy Abrams, you can contribute to Fair Fight, where you can split your contribution with Jon Ossoff, Rev. Raphael Warnock, and Fair Fight (to help with voter protection efforts). You can also sign up for phonebanking opportunities at Fair Fight. If you live in Georgia, you can request an absentee ballot here: “Georgia Absentee Voters / January 5, 2021 Runoff.”  If you would like to help turnout by calling voters in Georgia, see SwingLeft / Georgia. If you are a postcard writer, check out Flip the West / Postcards to Georgia Voters for U.S. Senate Runoff Race!   Both Ossoff and Warnock’s campaigns have volunteer opportunities outside of phone banking, including hosting a grassroots fundraiser and attending virtual events: Jon Ossoff for U.S. Senate and Rev. Raphael Warnock for U.S. Senate.   

Added on Nov 13th:

1. Make sure everyone who voted for Ossoff & Warnock on 11/3 is aware of the runoff elections. Canvass, phone, text bank and/or write letters

Volunteer for Jon Ossoff:

Volunteer for Raphael Warnock:

Phone bank for both Ossoff & Warnock:…/phone-bank-for…/all/

Write letters for both Ossoff & Warnock: 

2. Register as many new voters as possible in the next few weeks. Donate to the following groups working to register voters in Georgia. Let’s make sure these community groups have the resources they need to do everything possible to GOTV. Time is of the essence. Georgians who were not registered to vote in the 2020 Election can still register by 12/7 to vote in the Runoff Election  

Org started by Stacy Abrams:

Dates and Deadlines:

  • Nov. 18 – Absentee ballots begin going out
  • Dec. 7 – Deadline to register
  • Dec. 14 – Early in-person voting begins
  • Jan. 5 – Election Runoff
  • For Georgians: If you turn 18 by January 5, 2021, you are eligible to register now and vote on Election Day, Jan. 5th.

Posted in 2020 elections, SCOTUS | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

SARS-CoV-2 mink-associated variant strain

This story is of some concern…

(1) WHO, 6 November 2020

Since June 2020, 214 human cases of COVID-19 have been identified in Denmark with SARS-CoV-2 variants associated with farmed minks, including 12 cases with a unique variant, reported on 5 November. All 12 cases were identified in September 2020 in North Jutland, Denmark. The cases ranged in age from 7 to 79 years, and eight had a link to the mink farming industry. Four cases were from the local community.

Initial observations suggest that the clinical presentation, severity and transmission among those infected are similar to that of other circulating SARS-CoV-2 viruses. However, this variant, referred to as the “cluster 5” variant, had a combination of mutations, or changes that have not been previously observed. The implications of the identified changes in this variant are not yet well understood. Preliminary findings indicate that this particular mink-associated variant identified in both minks and the 12 human cases has moderately decreased sensitivity to neutralizing antibodies. Further scientific and laboratory-based studies are required to verify preliminary findings reported and to understand any potential implications of this finding in terms of diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines in development. In the meantime, actions are being taken by Danish authorities to limit the further spread of this variant of the virus among mink and human populations.

SARS-CoV-2, the virus which causes COVID-19, was first identified in humans in December 2019. As of 6 November, it has affected more than 48 million people causing over 1.2 million deaths worldwide. Although the virus is believed to be ancestrally linked to bats, the virus origin and intermediate host(s) of SARS-CoV-2 have not yet been identified.

Available evidence suggests that the virus is predominantly transmitted between people through respiratory droplets and close contact, but there are also examples of transmission between humans and animals. Several animals that have been in contact with infected humans, such as minks, dogs, domestic cats, lions and tigers, have tested positive for SARS-CoV-2.

Minks were infected following exposure from infected humans. Minks can act as a reservoir of SARS-CoV-2, passing the virus between them, and pose a risk for virus spill-over from mink to humans. People can then transmit this virus within the human population. Additionally, spill-back (human to mink transmission) can occur. It remains a concern when any animal virus spills in to the human population, or when an animal population could contribute to amplifying and spreading a virus affecting humans. As viruses move between human and animal populations, genetic modifications in the virus can occur. These changes can be identified through whole genome sequencing, and when found, experiments can study the possible implications of these changes on the disease in humans.

To date, six countries, namely Denmark, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, Italy and the United States of America have reported SARS-CoV-2 in farmed minks to the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE).

Public health response

Danish authorities have announced the following planned or ongoing public health actions:

  • Culling of all farmed mink (more than 17 million) in Denmark, including its breeding stock;
  • Enhancing surveillance of the local population to detect all COVID-19 cases, including through population-wide mass PCR testing for the region of North Jutland;
  • Expanding the percentage of sequencing of human and mink SARS-CoV-2 infections in Denmark;
  • Rapid sharing of the full genome sequences of the mink-variant SARS-CoV-2; and
  • Introducing new movement restrictions and other public health measures to affected areas in North Jutland to reduce further transmission, including movement restrictions between municipalities.

WHO risk assessment

All viruses, including SARS-CoV-2, change over time. SARS-CoV-2 strains infecting minks, which are subsequently transmitted to humans, may have acquired unique combinations of mutations. In order to fully understand the impact of specific mutations, advanced laboratory studies are required. These investigations take time and are done in close collaboration between different research groups.

The recent findings reported by the Danish Public Health Authority (Statens Serum Institut) in Denmark related to the novel variant of SARS-CoV-2 identified in humans need to be confirmed and further evaluated to better understand any potential implications in terms of transmission, clinical presentation, diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccine development.

Furthermore, detailed analyses and scientific studies are needed to better understand the reported mutations. The sharing of full genome sequences of human and animal strains will continue to facilitate detailed analyses by partners. Members of the WHO SARS-CoV-2 Virus Evolution Working Group are working with Danish scientists to better understand the available results and collaborate on further studies. Further scientific and laboratory-based studies will be undertaken to understand the implications of these viruses in terms of available SARS-CoV-2 diagnostics, therapeutics and vaccines in development.

Actions taken by the Danish authorities will limit continued spread of mink-associated variants of SARS-CoV-2 in Denmark, and in particular have been implemented to contain the unique variant reported to WHO. These actions include restricting movement of people, culling animals, widespread testing of people living in affected areas and increased genomic sequencing of SARS-CoV-2 viruses across the country.

WHO advice

This event highlights the important role that farmed mink populations can play in the ongoing transmission of SARS-CoV-2 and the critical role of strong surveillance, sampling and sequencing SARS-CoV-2, especially around areas where such animal reservoirs are identified.

The preliminary findings by Denmark are globally relevant and WHO recognises the importance of sharing epidemiological, virological and full genome sequence information with other countries and research teams, including through open-source platforms.

WHO advises further virological studies should be conducted to understand the specific mutations described by Denmark and to further investigate any epidemiological changes in function of the virus in terms of its transmissibility and the severity of disease it causes. WHO advises all countries to increase the sequencing of SARS-CoV-2 viruses where possible and sharing the sequence data internationally.

WHO advises all countries to enhance surveillance for COVID-19 at the animal-human interface where susceptible animal reservoirs are identified, including mink farms.

WHO also reminds countries to strengthen farming biosafety and biosecurity measures around known animal reservoirs in order to limit the risk of zoonotic events associated with SARS-CoV-2. This includes infection prevention and control measures for animal workers, farm visitors and those who may be involved in animal husbandry or culling.

The basic principles to reduce the general risk of transmission of acute respiratory infections are as follows:

  • Avoiding close contact with people suffering from acute respiratory infections;
  • Ensuring frequent hand-washing, especially after direct contact with ill people or their environment;
  • For people with symptoms of acute respiratory infection, practicing cough etiquette, such as maintain distance, cover coughs and sneezes with disposable tissues or clothing, and wash hands; use of masks where appropriate; and
  • Enhancing standard infection prevention and control practices in hospitals in health care facilities, especially in emergency departments.

WHO has issued guidance for Public health considerations while resuming international travel, recommending a thorough risk assessment, taking into account country context, the local epidemiology and transmission patterns, the national health and social measures to control the outbreak, and the capacities of health systems in both departure and destination countries, including at points of entry. In case of symptoms suggestive of acute respiratory illness either during or after travel, the travellers are encouraged to seek medical attention and share their travel history with their health care provider. Health authorities should work with travel, transport and tourism sectors to provide travellers with information to reduce the general risk of acute respiratory infections via travel health clinics, travel agencies, conveyance operators, and at points of entry.

(2) And what about in the US?

A report from Milwaukee, published Nov 6th, 2020

Laura Schulte Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Two Taylor County mink farms under quarantine after more than 5,000 animals died from COVID-19.

Two mink farms in Taylor County are under quarantine after animals in the facilities tested positive for ARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19 in humans.

Between the two farms, more than 5,400 mink have died, said Kevin Hoffman, the public information officer for the state Division of Animal Health. 

The virus was confirmed at the first farm in early October when a dead mink tested positive for the disease. The farm was quarantined at that point, meaning no animals or animal parts could leave the premises. It’s believed the virus jumped from a human to the animals, Hoffman said, but an investigation into the transfer is still underway. 

The outbreak at the second farm was found more recently, Hoffman said. It is not believed that the virus jumped from the first farm to the second.

Mink are members of the Mustelidae family that also includes weasels, badgers, otters, marten and wolverines. Wisconsin is one of the top producers of mink pelts in the U.S., Hoffman said. State officials are worried about the outbreaks and are regularly communicating with the state’s 19 mink farms. 

“It’s certainly concerning that (mink) are so susceptible,” Hoffman said. 

Valerie Zimbal, who owns Zimbal Mink Farm in Sheboygan Falls, said their mink population is being closely monitored for any signs of disease. They’ve also been implementing biosecurity measures since the pandemic started, like showering in and out, wearing masks, doing temperature checks and limiting visitors to the farm. If any employee feels sick, they are asked to stay at home.

Zimbal said the mink industry has been hit by the pandemic because mink coats and other fur clothing aren’t being bought as often since people are not out shopping as usual.

Wisconsin was the second state to have a confirmed case of COVID-19 in mink, after Utah, which confirmed its first case in August, according to the department. 

Denmark to slaughter all farmed mink

The U.S. is not the only country facing outbreaks on mink farms. According to a Nov. 4 New York Times report, Denmark will kill all farmed mink due to concerns that mutation in the virus in mink could interfere with the effectiveness of a vaccine for humans.

Denmark ordered a lockdown in the northern portion of the country due to the mink outbreak, according to the Associated Press. So far, 12 people have been infected with the coronavirus mutation found in mink, which has shown a weak reaction to antibodies.

Animal welfare groups in the United States are hoping to avoid that outcome, and are calling for the government to shutter all farms to avoid the spread of the disease among the animals. 

Animal Wellness Action, the Animal Wellness Foundation and the Center for a Humane Economy on Friday asked that governments in Oregon, Utah and Wisconsin to shut down their farms, and asked that the government establish a buy-out program for the farms. 

So far, Hoffman said, no actions to close down mink farms in the U.S. have been recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, but the agency is monitoring the situation closely.

Minks are more susceptible to the virus because of a protein in their lungs, which is similar to humans, Hoffman said. For that reason, there aren’t concerns over other types of animals, although two dogs in Wisconsin are known to have fallen ill due to the virus. 

Hoffman encouraged pet owners with COVID-19 to take precautions, though, to keep their furry companions safe. He recommended wearing a mask while around your pet and keeping a six-foot distance between any ill housemates and pets. 

“I know that can be really hard, but it’s the best thing you can do,” he said. 

Grace Connatser of the Wisconsin State Farmer contributed.

Laura Schulte can be reached at and

(3) Related article:

Animals Could Become Reservoirs for the Virus To Resurface at Any Time

Posted in Coronavirus | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Honking and Cheering in NY City

The Mayor of Paris just tweeted this:

From Meredith 🙂

Amazing footage from Philadelphia:

Posted in 2020 elections, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Trump’s Base: 2 Anecdotal Cases Regarding Sources of News

From Gigi Morris (Sag Harbor):

This may offer some insight into what is happening in this country.

About 3 weeks ago, I had a cleaning lady coming to my house in NH (she lives in VT) and I mentioned that I’d be home. So, of course, she and I would both need to wear a mask. She said she wouldn’t come if she had to wear a mask (having told me earlier she was strapped for cash.) She said to call her “when this flu blows over.” I said I didn’t think it would blow over any time soon. She said she needed to “educate me.” She explained that she doesn’t listen to all that “fake news,” and sent me this link (see below) with a note, “the truth will set us free.” She refers to covid as the “19-flu.” You don’t have to watch it, but it’s essentially a German lawyer explaining that it’s all a hoax, no worse than the flu.

This is not someone I would have ever thought of as ‘on the fringe’. In fact, she is very nice. Maybe 50. Always seemed over-educated for the job.
This is the link on the German lawyer that she sent me:

Likewise, a very nice handyman who I’ve known for a few years came by about a week prior to that, and told me the same thing. He’s kind and has two black children and is ‘pro-choice’ and is planning to work in solar power. And yet, he also said he avoids the mainstream “fake” news and gets his information “from friends and neighbors.” Trump, he said, just speaks his mind and the media is undermining our democracy.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Threatening rallies by Trump supporters

Threatening rallies in Arizona

This has me nervous. AZ has already been called for Biden by some news outlets including Fox News.

And here is the reporting by NBC:

Refusing to accept the results….

And there is more reporting from WaPo:

“Crowds targeted election centers in other cities on Wednesday as well, including in Detroit, where Republican election challengers shouted “Stop the count!” and demanded access to the room where votes were being counted, though Democratic and nonpartisan election challengers were also barred from the room. Two dueling crowds also faced off at the Clark County Elections Department in Nevada, where Biden’s advantage appears to be even smaller than in Arizona.AD

But the election officials on duty Wednesday in Arizona did not pause the poll workers’ vote counts, even as protesters angrily shouted at them through walls.

Police escorted Maricopa County election workers to their cars late Wednesday night as protesters chanted and rallied for hours outside. Several members of the crowd openly carried firearms.

Posted in 2020 elections, Trump, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments


I just got back from PA: Dauphin county (Harrisburg), where we were assigned to be poll watchers.  The county went D by 8 points.  Yay.  PA is important.

This graph is from Nate Cohn’s article in the NYT and shows that the majority of outstanding votes are likely to be “by mail” votes that are predicted to go heavily to Biden.

“If anything, the pre-election estimates suggest that Mr. Biden might be expected to do better, because the areas with remaining absentee votes are ever so slightly more Democratic than the state as a whole.”

Here is the big picture from the Associated Press:


  1. Biden needs 22 electoral votes to reach 270
  2. Trump needs 56 electoral votes to reach 270
  3. Michigan has just been called in the Biden column, so Biden needs 22-16 = 6 electoral votes
  4. Nevada has 6 electoral votes!

With 75% of votes counted in Nevada this is what it looks like:

That is a difference of just 8000 votes.  BUT, the bulk of the ballots left to be counted come from the state’s Democratic stronghold of Clark County (Las Vegas area).  This is according to VOX reports from 5:30pm today

Hold on!  We could have a winner announced tonight.

Posted in 2020 elections | Tagged , , , | 7 Comments

The Days After Election Day

As our democracy hangs by a rapidly fraying thread, it is critical that each of us do everything we can to ensure that Donald Trump is voted out of office, and once voted out of office, that he actually LEAVES office.

“The Day After Election Day,” an article in The New York Times, is an account of officials and aides who are worried the president will use the power of the government to keep himself in office. Following are highlights (lowlights is probably a more accurate term) from the article for those who can’t access it:

“Even though they can’t predict exactly what will happen, their concerns range from the president welcoming, then leveraging, foreign interference in the election, to encouraging havoc that grows into conflagrations that would merit his calling upon U.S. forces.

“I think the biggest shock he had — ’cause his assumption was the generals, ‘my generals,’ as he used to say and it used to make us cringe — was he …just assumed that generals would be completely loyal to the kaiser….And when we weren’t, that was a huge shock to him….

“This shock, and his first two-plus years of struggle with seasoned, expert advisers, led to an insight for Mr. Trump. It all came back to loyalty. He needed to get rid of any advisers or senior officials who vowed loyalty to the Constitution over personal loyalty to him. Which is pretty much what he proceeded to do.

“….Having loyalists at both the Department of Justice and D.N.I….allows him, potentially, to coordinate two key agencies of the government — secret intelligence and prosecution — toward his own political ends. 

“Key officials in several parts of the government told me how they thought the progression from the 3rd to the 4th might go down.

“…Disruption would most likely begin on Election Day morning somewhere on the East Coast, where polls open first….A group could just directly attack a polling place, injuring poll workers of both parties, and creating a powerful visual — an American polling place in flames, like the ballot box in Massachusetts that was burned earlier this week — that would immediately circle the globe.

“Violence and conflict throughout that day at the polls would surely affect turnout, allowing Mr. Trump to claim that the in-person vote had been corrupted….There are many scenarios that might unfold from here, nearly all of them entailing weeks or even months of conflict, and giving an advantage to the person who already runs the U.S. government. There will likely be some reckoning of the in-person vote drawn from vote tallies and exit polls. If Joe Biden is way ahead in these projections…Mr. Trump may find himself having to claim fraud or suppression that amounts to too large a share of votes to seem reasonable. Inside the Biden campaign they are calling this “too big to rig.

“No matter how the votes split, there’s an expectation among officials that Mr. Trump will claim some kind of victory on Nov. 4, even if it’s a victory he claims was hijacked by fraud….If the streets then fill with outraged people, he can easily summon, or prompt, or encourage troublemakers among his loyalists to turn a peaceful crowd into a sea of mayhem.

“…But across the government, another official argues that citizens may yet manage to rise to the challenge of this difficult election, in a time of division.

“The last line of defense in elections is the American voter,” he told me. “This is the most vulnerable phase,” now and the days immediately after Election Day, “where we’re so eager to have an outcome, that actors both foreign and domestic are going to exploit that interest, that thirst, that need for resolution to the drama.”

And there you have it. The days and weeks after the election are likely to be a referendum – not on Donald Trump, but on each and every one of us. When everything is on the line, it’s time to do everything you can. Stay tuned.

Posted in 2020 elections, Biden, Congress, Courts, democrats, DOJ, Fair elections, fascism, gerrymandering, GOP, Judiciary, long island, Nancy Goroff, New York Times, Politics, Trump, Trump atrocities, Uncategorized, Voter Fraud, voting by mail, Zeldin | 2 Comments

Poll Watching in Pennsylvania

From: Kathryn Levy 

I really don’t think the PA-Dems would be pushing so hard for poll observers if they didn’t think it was important. 

I worked in Florida as a volunteer coordinator for the Kerry and Obama campaigns. Particularly in the case of 2004, when there was an intense voter suppression effort in Florida, we had to dispatch volunteers to the polls several times each day to deal with voter intimidation, a campaign of misinformation, and people who simply needed water and help while waiting in 3 – 4 hour lines. We also tried to document what was happening at the polls. Please understand that this all went on outside the polls with untrained volunteers. The situation in the swing states this year promises to be even worse.

As for what is needed here, I am hearing many stories about very long lines in early polling places, but I have not yet heard one story about voter intimidation in Suffolk county or people disseminating misinformation. I’m afraid that will be different in Pennsylvania.

Today on Twitter, Katrina Vanden Heuval posted this simple Tweet: “Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania, Pennsylvania.” As I said, everyone should make their own choice. I’m having health problems. If I weren’t, I know where I would be on Election Day — Pennsylvania.

More here:

We NEED PA. Contact Kathryn Levy for more details.  Here’s how you can help: 

Poll Observer Training

Recruiting Poll Observers by Phone

Sign up to Be a Canvass Observer

Posted in 2020 elections | Leave a comment

The People PAC: Flipping Statehouses

From Mara Gerstein:

Dear Friends,
with T-6 days until voting ends in 2020, here at The People we are cycling between anxiety and HOPE. We are also filled to the brim with gratitude to our brilliant partners, generous donors, and the network of talented creatives, data geeks, and political wizards who have made our work this year possible. 

Together, as part of our Statehouse Media 2020 program, we produced 200 digital ads for 24 inspiring candidates and are running targeted digital distribution programs to flip the State House in Texas and Iowa and to break the Republican supermajority in Kansas. These states and districts were selected for maximum leverage in strengthening our democracy at the state level.

To date in 2020, this $1.5M program has resulted in our candidate videos being viewed by in-district voters IN THEIR ENTIRETY over 10 MILLION TIMES (and counting)

So check out the ads for these talented candidates and share them with folks in our target states!


Inevitably, some of these races will come down to 100, 10, even ONE SINGLE vote (recall that in Virginia 2017, control of the entire State House came down to a tied race with the winner chosen via hat pick!).

So if you can, please consider a final donation to help get candidates in our closest races over the line.


Learn more at
Posted in 2020 elections, Fair elections, NYS legislature | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Are we Ready?

The Love – Black Eyed Peas and Jennifer Hudson

“the choice could not be more clear”

Posted in 2020 elections, anti-semitism, Biden, bigotry, BLM, Civil Rights, Coronavirus, democrats, Discrimination, disenfranchisement, Fair elections, fascism, GOP, police, Poverty, public health, Religion & tolerance, Trump atrocities, Women, Zeldin | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

YAY! I voted!

pink slip

Like you, I have been waiting for this moment for 4 years.

I have never seen voting lines like this, not in 20 years, not in sleepy East Hampton after the summer crowds are long gone. Newsday and the Press were there to document the lines with photos and interviews of voters.

I got in line for early voting at Windmill Village in East Hampton. Polls were open from 10 AM to 3 PM. At 10:30 AM the line snaked around the neighborhood. I heard from a poll official that there were 260 voters in line. They were processing about 1 voter/min by my estimate based on how often a voter entered the actual polling station.

I was expecting a 4 h wait. But it turned out to be just about 3 hours. My friends Nigel and Jane got in line at 9 AM and voted at 11 AM: about 2 hours.

These kind of waiting periods are exhausting for elderly folks. They were for me.

Here is what you can do:

  1. 1. you can drop off you mail-in ballot and to do so you can go right to the front of the line and be directed to the correct person in the polling stations. The problem is that your ballot won’t be counted until after Nov 3rd along with all other mail-in ballots
  2. 2. if you are in any way disabled you can go to the front of the line. At Windmill Village they have a side entrance (on the right when you are facing the main entrance). I inquired for a family member who is seriously handicapped and she and her husband can use the side entrance thus avoiding the long line.
  3. 3. For the rest of us I suggest choosing carefully when you want to try to vote early. As per a prior post here are the choices:

I am thinking that Monday 7 AM might be a safe bet?

Finally, a word about safety.

Every one I encountered was wearing a mask and observing social distancing. Poll workers and voters were disinfecting their hands and the equipment between every voter!

The people in line were courteous and kept each other in a good mood. There were no attempts to threaten or bully voters. The police was stationed at the entrance to the Windmill Village complex to direct cars to park outside the village. They were helpful and friendly. They allowed cars transporting disabled voters to enter and drop them off close to the polling station. My friend Jerry (acting as a Dem poll watcher) confirmed my impression: no shenanigans and no voter intimidation, such as touted by the likes of the ‘Proud Boys’ and encouraged by the President and his sycophants.

I guess we had short lines compared to some polling stations in NY City:

Posted in 2020 elections, Coronavirus, Fair elections, long island, Trump, Uncategorized, Zeldin | Tagged , , , | 10 Comments

Caravans in Suffolk County

Trump car rally participant

From Shoshona Hershkowitz on Saturday’s rally on Long Island New York:

Yesterday, people where I live, we were harassed by the Trump caravan. This group with covered license plates, screaming slurs out of their bullhorns at intersections, calling for the Secret Service to shoot people I know, were out in full force, invading my town. They came with flags, including 3% and Q Anon flags alongside their Trump cult flags. When they came to Port Jefferson, they called friends of mine homophobic and racial slurs. They harassed people on the street, including children. They told my friend’s child, a child of color, to “go home”. If you want to know what modern day white supremacy looks like, you didn’t need to look any further than Port Jefferson yesterday.

Let’s be clear. There is no equivalent to this on the left. No one I know has attempted to cough unmasked on people. No one I know engages in calling people “faggots”. This is full on Trump white supremacy cult.

I’ll say one more thing. Republicans, you own this. You need to call your dogs off and stop it. Congressman Lee Zeldin, this is your base. These are your supporters. Your voters. Tell them to stop. Ed Romaine, you’ve said that Brookhaven is built on diversity. Stand up to the members of your party, the Republican Party, infiltrating Brookhaven, and making it unsafe for the residents.

The lines are clearly drawn at this point. You’re either with the white supremacists, or you’re not. And elected officials, failure to condemn and put a stop to this renders you complicit. Pick your side. Are you with the neo Nazis, or with the rest of us?

Last but not least, we’re going to be voting and making a real choice this election. Do we want to let these white supremacists win? Do we want to let their preferred candidates like Lee Zeldin win? I don’t. We need to send a message that #HateHasNoHomeHere , and that we will never allow white supremacists to gain this much of a foothold in America, ever again. So I ask you, #VoteThemAllOut. Destroy white supremacy and those who enable it. I’m looking at you, Lee Zeldin.


A woman was injured in a hit-and-run on Route 25A near North Country Road at around 12:45 p.m., police said. The parade was organized by the Setauket Patriots, an online group that supports Trump and conservative values. James Robitsek, founder of the Setauket Patriots Facebook page, led the caravan and said his car was not involved in the hit-and-run.

William Ferraro, a former Brookhaven town supervisor Democratic candidate, shared on Facebook a photo of a car with a flag reading “TRUMP 2020 F— Your Feelings” covering its license plate.

“Port Jeff is for families, not Trump rallies,” Ferraro, co-president of the Central Brookhaven Democratic Club, said. “Several of my friends were down port at the time, and witnessed obscenities on flags, cars swerving, coughing on people in mockery of COVID-19 – it really brought out the worst element.

Posted in 2020 elections, Brookhaven, Coronavirus, fascism, long island, Trump, Trump atrocities, Zeldin | 3 Comments

How Masks Matter

OK. Seriously, what is the latest on masks? Bottom line: if most people wear an effective mask we can significantly curb viral transmission

It is increasingly clear that there are differences in mask quality and protection. Here is one example of a recent report:

Fitted N95, no valve (14 in photo)
3-layer surgical mask (1)
Cotton-polypropylene-cotton mask (5)
2-layer polypropylene apron mask (4)
2-layer cotton, pleated style mask (13)
2-layer cotton, pleated style mask (7)
Valved N95 mask (2)
2-layer cotton, Olson style mask (8)
1-layer Maxima AT mask (6)
1-layer cotton, pleated style mask (10)
2-layer cotton, pleated style mask (9)
Knitted mask (3) NOT GOOD
Double-layer bandana (12) NOT GOOD
Gaiter-style neck fleece (11) USELESS

Read a more in depth study here:

Another set of data looks at transmission among airline passengers on Emirates and specifically on their 8h flights Dubai – Hongkong. Emirates has a strictly enforced mask policy. Even on completely booked flights with, for example, 7 COVID+ passengers, there was no transmission to other passengers!

Their conclusion is that strictly enforced mask usage works.

The bottom line: if most people wear masks we can significantly curb viral transmission. It is useful to have an effective mask too.

The following graph plots adherence to mask policy versus quality of the mask used. With poor quality masks it does not matter whether a high percent of people use a mask. And with poor adherence to mask wearing rules, even those that wear a high quality mask are not protected. One needs both a good mask and strict mask use enforcement.

Posted in Coronavirus, Health Care, Trump, Zeldin | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Prop #1: Yes or No?

Prop #1 asks voters (on the back of the ballot for Nov 3rd) if we’d like the term length for our Suffolk County legislators be four years rather than the current two. A no vote advocates keeping them on a short leash.  A yes vote advocates giving them breathing room to do the job they were hired for without having to continually raise money for the next campaign.

The Democrats, who currently hold the majority in our legislature, put this referendum on the ballot.  The vote to put it on the ballot was straight party line: 10 Democrats votes for, 7 Republicans votes against and one Republican abstention.
Cheers, Bob Wick

See more info here:

And here is the opinion of Newsday’s editorial board:

Newsday recommends voting no on Proposal One.

Proposal One: This would lengthen the term of office for a Suffolk County legislator to four years from the current two years. A similar proposal put to voters in 2002 was defeated handily. County residents would be right to again reject this proposition. Continuity in county government is provided by a four-year term for the county executive, which is appropriate for that position. A two-year term for lawmakers gives the public a way to more frequently register disapproval and course-correct if it is dissatisfied with the direction of county government.

Posted in 2020 elections, long island | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Pennsylvania: the Key Battleground

Pennsylvania (PA) is the tipping point: I read that if Biden wins PA, he has 90+% chance of winning the presidency. If he loses PA he has a less than 50% chance.

Both sides now see Pennsylvania, with 20 electoral college votes, as a must-win prize on the path to the 270 needed to win the White House, according to Democratic and Republican strategists. They also increasingly view the battle for those votes as one that could well continue beyond Election Day — with a growing list of balloting disputes and lawsuits setting the stage…”

There are about 9000 polling precincts in PA. The PA Poll Observer team plans to put 2 poll observers in each polling station: one inside the station and one outside. NY residents are allowed to be outside, but not inside, poll observers.

Together with 790 other volunteers I attended a 2.5 h training session earlier today. It was excellent. If you don’t mind the grueling Nov. 3rd hours (6:30 AM to 8:30 PM) and being exposed outside for the day, I think this is probably the most productive volunteer work you can possibly do for this election.

“Trump can continue making a fool of himself, and Biden could win all of the swing states on Election Day; but we still can’t rest easy until January 20. Yet the bigger the win, the less likely it is to be overturned. I sure wish this were all safely in the history books instead of unfolding insanely day by day.” ROBERT KUTTNER Follow Robert Kuttner on Twitter Robert Kuttner’s latest book is  The Stakes: 2020 and the Survival of American Democracy.

To be a PA election observer use this link:

Also sign-up here:

Posted in 2020 elections, Biden, democrats, Fair elections, Trump | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments Living a Double Life

PRESS RELEASE: October 16, 2020

CONTACTS:  Jacquelyn Gavron,,

                         Amy Turner,,

NY-01 Constituents’ Website——Reveals Troubling Discrepancies 

With Rep. Zeldin “living a double life”—as Newsday recently put it—it’s almost impossible for voters to know where he stands on critical issues. “At home in his district,’’ Zeldin presents himself as a “bi-partisan player” seeking solutions, but in Washington, D.C. Zeldin is a “Trumpist-star,” who has voted in line with the president’s positions 91.7% of the time, often to the detriment of NY-01.

Frustrated by the discrepancy between what Zeldin says for local consumption (in social media posts, emails, and his official website) and how he has voted in Congress, a team of constituents from across NY-01 has launched a website——to fact-check his claims—including Accomplishments on his official website—and provide voters with the information needed to make an informed choice. 

The new Fact Check section on Zeldin’s “Accomplishments” reveals troubling discrepancies on critical issues including Healthcare, Covid-19, Environment, Women, and Veterans. Here are just a few examples (there are many more):

  • Zeldin says he’s “fighting for women,” but he voted against a bill making it illegal for employers to discriminate against women who are pregnant or have medical needs related to childbirth.
  • Zeldin voted against a bi-partisan bill to lower drug costs by letting the government negotiate prices with big pharma, even though he promised to “lower the cost of prescription drugs.” 
  • Zeldin claims he’s “safeguarding the environment,” but he voted to repeal the Clean Water Rule and end Clean Air Act standards.

NOTE: The information on has been obtained from and other publicly available sources.

Posted in 2020 elections, Trump, Zeldin | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Zeldin’s complete Environmental Record

Latest update of Zeldin’s environmental voting record below. 
The spreadsheet itself (all 193 bills since Zeldin was first elected) is linked in Excel format:

This is our last update before the November 3rd election. It covers the 21 bills tracked by the League of Conservation Scorecard so far in 2020.So far in 2020, Lee Zeldin has voted against the environment in 14 of these bills and for the environment in 7, for a year-to-date score of 33%. Zeldin’s lifetime score (to date) is 15%. Although Zeldin’s lifetime score has crept up by a few percentage points over the last 2 years, it remains embarrassingly low when viewed in context: the average LCV score of a Member of Congress last year was 59%. Some highlights of Zeldin’s environmental voting record so far in 2020: He voted to permit Trump’s EPA to issue weak standards on soot pollution. He voted against more federal infrastructure funding for clean energy, clean water and mass transportation. He voted not to restrict funding for resumption of nuclear testing. He voted against increases in funding for climate, oceans, coastal science, energy efficiency and renewable energy. He voted against increases in federal funding for the Drinking Water and Clean Water State Revolving Funds. And he voted against funding for replacing lead service lines providing drinking water to predominately minority and low income neighborhoods. On the plus side, Zeldin voted for full and permanent funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund, a program he has long supported. LWCF funds are used to protect and enhance public lands and to provide community recreational facilities. This bill passed the Senate and was signed into law. Finally, and in seemingly contradictory fashion, on the same day Zeldin voted for greater regulation of PFAS chemicals, which are suspected carcinogens, but against a bill to close a loophole in the Clean Water Act that permits PFAS to be discharged into waterways. Details can be found in the linked spreadsheet:

To sum it up, he has voted the wrong way on bills to mitigate climate change 92% of the time, to be exact, despite the double talk, evasions & obfuscation he dished out in his video presentation at the NYLCV climate change forum a few days ago.

Best, Marc Rauch and Suzi Kondic

Posted in 2020 elections, Environment, EPA, Trump, Zeldin | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Trump’s chearleader: Lee Zeldin

Don’t let him fool you: LZ will take away your healthcare, your reproductive rights and destroy the environment. Another 4 years of DT and another 2 years of LZ spells disaster. VOTE GOROFF for Congress, Biden/Harris for the top of the ticket.

A message from Nancy Goroff: End Citizens United just named Lee Zeldin, one of Trump’s most complicit and self-serving friends in the House, to their Big Money 20 list of top targets who are rigging the system to benefit themselves, their wealthy donors, and the corrupt establishment. As Zeldin becomes more complicit in supporting Trump’s denial of science and putting corporate interests ahead of Long Island families, his chances of winning this race are slipping. But this race isn’t ours just yet. This race is a statistical tie. If we can sustain our communication and field strategies with meaningful voter targeting, we will win. With 19 days left, help us close that gap now:

Posted in 2020 elections, long island, Trump, Zeldin | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment