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Recent decreases in daily case counts are made meaningless by decreases in testing: COVID-19 dilemma

2020-08-14

SARS-COV-2 virions by EM: JAMA Open Network

We are near the bottom of the COVID-19 pandemic. The quality of data has deteriorated to the point where it is unusable. Delays in getting test results have increased up to two weeks or more; the number of tests done each day are going down, in some cases by half (Texas went down 45% according to one source); tests done are coming back positive up to 24% or more of the time.

The other active story that we cannot get our heads around: the US Postal Service (USPS) is being dismantled in front of our eyes. Ten percent of sorting machines nationwide are being dismantled and removed. Mail delays are increasing every day due to the changes in policy that have been ordered. The new Postmaster General is a donor both to the Republican Party and to the president himself– but he has no experience in the Postal Service whatsoever. He is a “logistics expert” which is supposed to be a substitute for direct Postal Service executive experience.

The politicization of the Postal Service is a situation that was supposed to be prevented by the establishment of the Postal Governing Board. The scandal that followed President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s Postmaster General apparently didn’t teach the Republicans anything. Postmaster General Farley had stamps printed to the order of President Roosevelt, which was “OK” because the President was an avid stamp collector (probably only because he had been paralyzed by poliomyelitis.)

The other things the patronage position of Postmaster General caused weren’t so “OK.” Now the new president has weaponized, rather than simply politicizing, the USPS. My previous posts about the Departments of government that have been degraded under the current administration left out the post office, and I’m sorry about that.

So, I’m angry, and you should be too. They’re trying to keep you from voting. That should make you all the more determined to vote, no matter what the risks or how long you have to wait in line. This motivation worked to the Democratic advantage in the Wisconsin primaries and resulted in the removal of a State Supreme Court Justice who happened to be a Republican. Let’s hope the same motivation works in spades this November.

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