On July 30, the National Basketball Association (NBA) began scrimmages in the “NBA Bubble,” a self isolation resort inside Disneyworld in Orlando, Florida. The Bubble has strict rules to protect players and other staff from the COVID-19 pandemic as they close out the 2019–20 season and playoffs in the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex. The whole production is costing $150 million, but that’s a small price to pay given that the NBA playoffs generated $932 million in advertising in 2019 and hundreds of millions more in basketball apparel sales and endorsements. But it all goes down the drain if there’s a coronavirus outbreak; the season was suspended after one member of the Salt Lake City Jazz tested positive on March 11.
Two players who tested positive upon their arrival were quarantined, and no one has tested positive since. Players, coaching staff, and Bubble personnel are all tested every other day, and anyone who leaves for whatever urgent reason is quarantined for four days upon their return. Virtual fans fill virtual stands via video link, and when sitting on the sidelines most players and coaching staff wear masks, as do most referees, even as the players climb over and crash into one another fighting for the ball, shooting, and blocking shots.
Los Angeles Clippers star Lou Williams left the Bubble for a funeral, and was famously quarantined for 10 days after someone took his picture in Atlanta’s Magic City strip club and posted it to Instagram before his return, even though he and his pals all seemed to be wearing masks in the picture. Williams claimed he’d just stopped by to pick up some of the best chicken wings in Atlanta, but wisecrackers responded that he’d gone for the legs and the thighs, and several girls at the club said he was a generous tipper. Clippers Coach Doc Rivers might have been angrier if the team had lost their second spot in the NBA standings while Williams was in quarantine.
Read the full article. So many people are at risk during the pandemic and that includes, as Ms. Garrison points out, being at risk of losing their homes. So much could be done that is not being done.
We have no real leadership from either the Democrats or the Republicans holding office.
This is C.I.'s "Iraq snapshot:"
Wednesday, August 12, 2020. Kamala Harris gets her moment (who remembers Tulsi?), Turkey continues to terrorize Iraq, and much more.
Starting in the US where Senator Kamala Harris has been selected as Joe Biden's running mate. Kamala brings positives and negatives to the ticket.
On the positive side, she has energy and charisma. She has held elected office -- District Attorney in San Francisco, Attorney General of California and US senator. Her campaign for the presidential nomination created the K-Hive -- a group of supporters. Those are all strengths.
On the negative side? Her record as DA and AG could hurt the ticket. Betty's "Kamala isn't Black" makes a solid point. Kamala's father is Black and her mother is from India. We've explained before that she doesn't use the term African-American. She does use the term Black. At other times, that might be fine. But she is bi-racial and Betty's right that a message is sent by the Joe Bidens when the "Black" person they choose to embrace is actually bi-racial. What message does that send to the Black community in this country? There's not a lot Kamala can do about that.
For some on the right wing, Kamala's work on the anti-lynching measure is a source of controversy because she embraced Jussie Smollett's lie and then had no real answer when asked about it after it imploded. She looked at the camera and played dumb. Some on the right insist she was 'in on it,' knew it was a hoax. (No, I don't believe she knew it was a hoax, I'm talking about baggage she brings to the ticket.)
For me, what the choice of Kamala drives home is . . . just how unimportant Tulsi Gabbard was and is.
For those who have forgotten, the last day of July saw one of two Democratic Party debates -- there were so many candidates that they had to divide them into two nights. Kamala was on stage with Joe Biden and Tulsi Gabbard among others.
Tulsi -- the fake ass anti-war candidate -- went after Kamala on her record of prosecutions. She ripped her apart and got media attention because, hey, it's a cat fight and that feeds into the media's ingrained sexism.
Take on Joe and you will be held accountable by the media -- ask Cory Booker, ask Julian Castro -- even ask Kamala. But if two women disagree, the media will run with it.
In this case, Tulsi did not disagree. She walked up with a two-by-four and knocked Kamala across the face with it.
The media loved it and Tulsi got a wave of attention.
In that wave, she offered lies for Joe Biden about the Iraq War.
In real time, the morning after the debate, we noted that fake ass anti-war Tulsi was given two chances to call Joe out in that debate. Jake Tapper set her up for it. She didn't do it. He then worked his way back to her and gave her a second chance and she took a pass.
From the August 1, 2019 snapshot:
Joe was an embarrassment and we'll probably come back to him.
But let me now break a thousand and one fantasies and tick a lot of people off.
The other big loser? Tulsi Gabbard.
Why was she on the stage?
Yes, she was rarely called on and had little time to speak. That really doesn't make a difference because when she did speak, she repeatedly blew it.
Watching her, with a group of college students, was cringe worthy. I kept my mouth shut during the debate and I waited until all the students had spoken before I shared my opinion.
The group was made up of people who were supporting Bernie Sanders, Elizabeth Warren or Tulsi Gabbard (one young man was supporting Mike Gravel). No one was hostile towards her going into the debate.
No one was impressed with her after the debate -- not even her supporters -- one of which said that she performed like she thought Joe Biden was going to win the nomination and she was angling to be his running mate on the ticket.
She was bad.
Jill Stein bad. In 2012, Jill ran a hideous campaign. One of the worst campaigns I've ever seen. Ava and I noted that in our day-after-the-election piece ["Let the fun begin (Ava and C.I.)"]. Marianne Williamson is ridiculed by some as a 'new age guru.' That's nonsense. She runs like a real candidate, she speaks to real issues. Jill, however, ran in 2012 like a new age guru and I found Tulsi last night to be just as vapid.
When I shared a month or so ago that I hadn't decided who I'd support (I thought that was rather obvious by the statements I'd made all along but I guess it wasn't) e-mails poured in -- to the community e-mail, not the public one, these were community members, not drive-bys to the public account -- insisting that if I was against the wars, I had to support Tulsi because she was.
Tulsi speaks a lot of beliefs that I agree with. In her interviews. In some of her speeches.
But I'm not 19. I've seen nonsense before.
And I saw it last night, repeatedly.
If people went to her website today demanding their donations back, I wouldn't be surprised at all.
She's polling slightly higher -- or was before the debate. Just a tad higher. And she needed to connect. But whomever wore that white pantsuit on stage last night -- the real Tulsi or Tulsi on ambien -- didn't connect.
With Mike Gravel and Tulsi, we're told it's important that they're on the stage in the debates because they will raise real issues. I know Mike and he will -- and did in 2008 when he was on the stage. But Tulsi didn't.
She was supposed to be the anti-war voice. She was on stage with the biggest War Hawk running for the nomination -- Joe Biden.
And she didn't touch him.
And she didn't call out the wars in any significant or meaningful manner.
And the wars were an actual issue. Moderator Jake Tapper brought the topic up and Jake went to more than just two people on this issue. We're using NBC transcript for this debate, by the way.
That was Tulsi?
Her whole reason for being on the stage is supposed to be about ending the wars. Get Tulsi on the stage, even her detractor David Swanson has argued, because she's going to be raising the real issues.
Well not only were her remarks above inadequate and, yes, flat out embarrassing -- John Kerry could have made the same remarks in 2004 -- but she blew it.
Not just then. If it was just then, okay, she didn't think on her feet and realized a few seconds after that she should have spoken to the issues strongly.
Okay but Jay Inslee wanted to speak -- see above -- Jake instead went back to Tulsi, went back to her.
Note that Tulsi went on, in her brief media wave after that debate, to lie for Joe.
Are you among the many unhappy that Joe will most likely be the Democratic Party's presidential nominee? Lay some blame at Tulsi's door.
She was more than happy to rip apart a woman for alleged wrongful imprisonments but she wouldn't touch the White man who is responsible for the deaths of over a million Iraqis (not to mention all the people in prison because of Joe's crime legislation).
People praised Tulsi for that debate -- people who should damn well have known better. I'm being kind and not saying, "_____ what were you thinking when you used your radio program after that debate to hail her as 'anti-war'?" But there was a whole host of people who made excuses for her.
Don't worry, we were told, at the next debate, Tulsi was going after Joe.
They lied to themselves about that. And, of course, Tulsi's ass never made it on stage again.
She had one shot to call out a War Hawk who was responsbile for so many deaths and she didn't choke, she just refused to do it -- on stage at the debate, on camera with multiple outlets in the wave of attention after.
About the only one with the guts to call Tulsi out in real time (other than us)? Adam Kokesh. He noted the myth of Tulsi, saw through it. It's a shame others could not.
When Tulsi dropped out and refused to endorse Bernie, people made excuses for her again. She dropped out and, in her dropping out announcement, endorsed Joe Biden. That was March 19th. Stop pretending that piece of garbage is anti-war.
She is one of the strongest reasons that Joe is the nominee.
The fools who supported her to the tiny end insisted that she destroyed Kamala. They took comfort in that. The Michael Traceys, for example, the sewer of the internet.
Well it's August 12, 2020 and who is destroyed?
Not Kamala. She's on a presidential ticket. Regardless of the outcome of the 2020 election, her profile has risen considerably and she is now, to the media, a rock star.
Fake Ass Gabbard?
She's not on a presidential ticket. She's also not going to be in Congress much longer. She couldn't win her own district. The polling showed that. So she tried to save face and declare that she wouldn't seek re-election. Fake Ass' Congressional district wasn't about to re-elect her. Had she not declared that, she would have been embarrassed in the midst of her pathetic presidential run by losing a Democratic primary. What an endorsement that would have been.
Tulsi: I've been in the US Congress. Now I'm running for president. I just got primaried and lost. My own district won't re-elect me but I'm asking you to make me president of the United States. I'm Tulsi Gabbard and I fake ass this announcement.
Fake Ass Gabbard achieved nothing in her run and that's no one's fault but her own. After she endorsed Biden, some people tried to say that at least she took out Kamala. She never took out Kamala and we said that all along.
The Iraq War continues -- not that Tulsi uses her Congressional seat to point that reality out. Nor does she ever try to advocate for the Iraqi people who continue to suffer. She doesn't speak of them and didn't even when she was posing as the anti-war candidate.
A Turkish drone strike struck a military vehicle north of Erbil, killing two Iraqi border guard battalion commanders and their driver, the Iraqi military said Tuesday.
According to the Kurdish news outlet Rudaw, the strike in the Bradost area in northern Iraq targeted a meeting between border officials and fighters with the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which Ankara considers a terrorist group. Bradost Mayor Ihsan Chelebi told the Associated Press that the officers killed Tuesday had been setting up new posts in the area.
Iraq cancelled a ministerial visit and summoned Turkey's ambassador on Wednesday as it blamed Ankara for a drone attack that killed two high-ranking Iraqi military officers.
Iraqi officials called the attack a "blatant Turkish drone attack" in the autonomous Kurdish region in northern Iraq, where Turkey's military has for weeks raided positions of fighters it considers "terrorists".
An explosion targeted a U.S.-led coalition convoy in Iraq on Tuesday and caused no casualties, just hours after a newly formed Shiite militant group falsely claimed bombing a similar convoy at the Iraq-Kuwait border, the American military said.
The little-known Ashab al-Kahf group claimed in an overnight statement it destroyed “equipment and vehicles belonging to the American enemy” in a bombing targeting a border crossing south of the Iraqi city of Basra.
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