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Cupcakes, Egos, Little Richard, Covid continues
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Published Monday, May 11, 2020 @ 6:06 AM EDT
May 11 2020

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Today is Monday, May 11, the 132nd day of the year in the Gregorian calendar. 234 days remain until the end of the year.

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Among other things, today is Eat What You Want Day, Hostess CupCake Day, National Twilight Zone Day, National Women's Check-Up Day, and World Ego Awareness Day (does Donald Trump know about this?)

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Remembering Little Richard (December 5, 1932 - May 9, 2020), "The Architect of Rock and Roll." He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as part of its first group of inductees in 1986. He was also inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame. His first hit recording, Tutti Frutti, was included in the National Recording Registry of the Library of Congress in 2010, noting its "unique vocalizing over the irresistible beat announced a new era in music".

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Remembering Irving Berlin (May 11, 1888 – September 22, 1989), Russian-born Jewish-American composer and lyricist. Widely considered one of the greatest songwriters in American history, his music forms a great part of the Great American Songbook. He published his first song, "Marie from Sunny Italy", in 1907, receiving 37 cents for the publishing rights, and had his first major international hit, "Alexander's Ragtime Band" in 1911. Composer George Gershwin called him "the greatest songwriter that has ever lived," and composer Jerome Kern concluded that "Irving Berlin has no place in American music- he is American music." (full Wikipedia article)

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Remembering theoretical physicist and Nobel prize winner Richard Feynman (May 11, 1918 - February 15, 1988), who assisted in the development of the atomic bomb during World War II and became known to a wide public in the 1980s as a member of the Rogers Commission, the panel that investigated the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster. Along with his work in theoretical physics, Feynman has been credited with pioneering the field of quantum computing and introducing the concept of nanotechnology. Here's a great explainer of "The Great Explainer."

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On this date in 1963, Peter, Paul and Mary's recording of Puff, The Magic Dragon reached #2, its highest position, on the Billboard Hot 100.

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On this date in 1968, Richard Harris' recording of songwriter Jimmy Webb's MacArthur Park entered the Billboard Hot 100 at number 79, peaking at number 2 on June 22, 1968 behind Herb Alpert's "This Guy's in Love with You". The record won the 1969 Grammy Award for Best Arrangement Accompanying Vocalist(s).

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Thoughts of the day:

Where is the future they promised me? The 21st century is just the 20th century all over again, only in high definition.
-Lewis Black

The flight to Mars is six months; eight, if you leave from Newark.
-David Letterman

For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for Nature cannot be fooled.
-Richard Feynman

History is not a game of chess, and we're not pawns of historical forces. We're more like marbles of historical forces in a game of Hungry Hungry Hippos.
-John Alejandro King (The Covert Comic)

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Going viral:

"I'm so honored to be your valedictator!" Alec Baldwin as Trump in Saturday Night Live cold open gs a commencement speech to 'the class of COVID-19', drinks bleach, and claims the coronavirus originated in "a lab in Obama."

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As deaths mount, Trump’s disinformation strategy will adapt. Bashing the epidemiological models didn't work. Now, the administration is questioning reality itself.

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The government turned down an opportunity to manufacture millions of N-95 masks here in the U.S. at the start of the pandemic. On January 22, a medical supply company in Fort Worth, Texas, Prestige Ameritech, offered to ramp up production to make an additional 1.7 million N95 masks, noting that the federal government’s stockpile was diminishing. The Department of Health and Human Services declined the offer.

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The Bailout is working- for the rich. The economy is in free fall but Wall Street is thriving, and stocks of big private equity firms are soaring dramatically higher. That tells you who investors think is the real beneficiary of the federal government’s massive rescue efforts. Case in point: Peloton can’t make bikes as fast as people are buying them.

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Trump says coronavirus will disappear without a vaccine. Fauci has said the opposite. Fauci: "It's not going to be over to the point of our being able to not do any mitigation until we have a scientifically sound, safe and effective vaccine."

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Fauci, two others on coronavirus task force to quarantine after being exposed to virus. Because Trump doesn't like to see face masks in the White House.

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How coronavirus — a 'rich man’s disease'- infected the poor. This virus may be remembered as the first pandemic that spread, to a significant extent, from the affluent to the lowly- agitating class grievances in some of the world’s most unequal societies and adding a dark twist to a pandemic that has killed more than 270,000 people.

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The world is taking pity on us... "The country Trump promised to make great again has never in its history seemed so pitiful," wrote Fintan O’Toole in The Irish Times. And he asked: "Will American prestige ever recover from this shameful episode?"

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Fact-checking Judy Mikovits, the controversial virologist attacking Anthony Fauci in a viral conspiracy video. In a video that has exploded on social media in the past few days, virologist Judy Mikovits claims the new coronavirus is being wrongly blamed for many deaths. She makes head-scratching assertions about the virus—for instance, that it is "activated" by face masks. And if you found that 'Plandemic' video convincing, read this too. Even more debunking here.

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Obama described Trump administration pandemic response "chaotic disaster"...

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Roy Horn, 75, of the Siegfried and Roy duo dies of coronavirus. From February 1, 1990, until Horn's career-ending injury on October 3, 2003, the duo performed as Siegfried & Roy at the Mirage Resort and Casino, and was the most popular show in Las Vegas.

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Alfredo and Susana Pabatao Die; Health Care Aides on the Front Lines. Married for 44 years, they both fell ill of the coronavirus and died within four days of each other in the New Jersey hospital where Mr. Pabatao worked.

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How we 'recovered' from the Spanish flu should be a warning for the coronavirus age. We deserve true reform in the aftermath of this crisis, but wishful thinking won't make it so. Given the current climate, it seems highly likely that fear may yet prevail.

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Miscellany:

He didn't file charges in the Arbery case, but he spent years accusing a black grandma of voter fraud.

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A new study involving two subjects with implanted brain-computer interfaces provides the most direct proof yet that human brains replay activities during sleep. Scientists believe the replays allow our brains to weed through the prior day's experiences to identify the stuff that merits long-term storage.

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Things are really rough out there. Please consider donating to Feeding America.


Categories: 1918 Pandemic, Covert Comic, Covid-19, David Letterman, Donald Trump, Lewis Black, Ray Horn, Saturday Night Live, Spanish Flu


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