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AMERICA IN CRISIS

‘Chaos’: Kushner-Commandeered Supply Chain Task Force Operates in the Dark, Turned Government Into Arm of Big Business

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Jared Kushner is best known for his failures, and his decision to commandeer the supply chain task force and turn it into an arm of Big Business may be his greatest.

The supply chain task force, a part of the larger coronavirus task force, should be helping the federal government procure desperately-needed personal protective equipment (PPE) including face masks and shields, along with life-saving medical equipment like ventilators, at a lower cost, and distributing it to the areas that need it the most.

But under Kushner’s manipulation, the supply chain task force has “virtually no accountability,” NBC News reports. It has “operated almost entirely in the dark, releasing few details of their arrangements with the big companies; created a new and convoluted emergency response system; and sown confusion and distrust in the states and among the people who need medical supplies.”

“Jared and his friends decided they were going to do their thing,” one senior government official told NBC News. “It cost weeks.”

Congressional officials warn the supply chain group is mired in “chaos, secrecy and ineptitude.”

NBC reports under Kushner the supply chain task force has spent about one million dollars each on 40 chartered FedEx flights in a deal for chemical giant DuPont to send its made in the USA Tyvek material over to Vietnam, where it is sown into body suits.

Those suits used to sell for $5 each. The federal government, in addition to basically donating what would amount to $40 million to DuPont, is now paying up to three times as much for the suits: $15 each, NBC News reports. To make matters worse, instead of paying FedEx $1 million per flight the federal government could have used U.S. military aircraft which would have cost less than half: $410,000 per flight.

And if all that weren’t bad enough, DuPont only sold 60 percent of the suits to the federal government.

“We actually helped get raw materials supplied from Richmond, Virginia, and we flew that s— to Vietnam, all so that DuPont could sell us” their products, said a senior federal official involved in the coronavirus effort.

President Donald Trump and HHS, which announced the deal last week, described the arrangement as one in a string of massive successes in delivering badly needed medical equipment into the U.S. in an expedited fashion.

Read the entire report here.

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AMERICA IN CRISIS

Experts Gamed Out a Contested 2020 Election — All Scenarios Resulted in ‘Street-Level Violence’ in America

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Experts are warning of a dark winter if the 2020 presidential election results are contested.

“On the second Friday in June, a group of political operatives, former government and military officials, and academics quietly convened online for what became a disturbing exercise in the fragility of American democracy,” the Boston Globe reported Saturday. “The group, which included Democrats and Republicans, gathered to game out possible results of the November election, grappling with questions that seem less far-fetched by the day: What if President Trump refuses to concede a loss, as he publicly hinted recently he might do? How far could he go to preserve his power? And what if Democrats refuse to give in?”

While former Vice President Joe Biden currently has large leads in public polling on the race, Trump has refused to say he will accept the results if he loses.

A Georgetown law professor and former Defense Department official who helped organize the Transition Integrity Project explained the situation to the newspaper.

“All of our scenarios ended in both street-level violence and political impasse,” Prof. Rosa Brooks explained. “The law is essentially … it’s almost helpless against a president who’s willing to ignore it.”

The scenarios are dark.

“Using a role-playing game that is a fixture of military and national security planning, the group envisioned a dark 11 weeks between Election Day and Inauguration Day, one in which Trump and his Republican allies used every apparatus of government — the Postal Service, state lawmakers, the Justice Department, federal agents, and the military — to hold onto power, and Democrats took to the courts and the streets to try to stop it,” the Globe explained.

“If it sounds paranoid or outlandish — a war room of seasoned politicos and constitutional experts playing a Washington version of Dungeons and Dragons in which the future of the republic hangs in the balance — they get it,” the newspaper reported. “But, as they finalize a report on what they learned and begin briefing elected officials and others, they insist their warning is serious: A close election this fall is likely to be contested, and there are few guardrails to stop a constitutional crisis, particularly if Trump flexes the considerable tools at his disposal to give himself an advantage.”

Historian Nils Gilman explained the leverage Trump has in a contested election.

“He doesn’t have to win the election,” said Gilman. “He just has to create a plausible narrative that he didn’t lose.”

Read the full report.

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AMERICA IN CRISIS

Trump’s ‘Nonstop’ Drive for Self-Destruction Is ‘Habitual and Incurable’: Presidential Scholar

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President Donald Trump’s polling numbers have continued falling as the novel coronavirus has surged throughout the United States.

The Associated Press has written a lengthy story about how Trump’s chaotic response to the pandemic has led to uncontrolled outbreaks and 130,000 dead Americans in just four months, and it notes that Trump has essentially stopped trying to contain the disease and has instead moved to wage culture wars against monument vandals.

Cal Jillson, a presidential scholar at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, tells the AP that the president’s focus on protecting statues at a time when a deadly pandemic is killing thousands of people every week is an act of self-destruction.

“If he could change, he would,” he said. “It’s not helping him now. It’s just nonstop. It is habitual and incurable. He is who he is.”

Jillson also said that Trump’s habit of making a constant spectacle, which helped his presidential campaign in 2016, has become a massive liability during a time of national crisis.

“People would watch Trump and see the instability… the emergencies of his own making he would then claim to have taken care of, and be mildly entertained or at least not deeply worried,” he said. “A lot of that ‘Am I still amused?’ quickly gets to a ‘No’ answer.”

 

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AMERICA IN CRISIS

‘Very Concerned’ Fauci Issues Stern Warning: ‘Would Not Be Surprised if We Go Up to 100,000’ New COVID-19 Cases a Day

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Dr. Anthony Fauci made a rare appearance Tuesday, speaking on Capitol Hill to issue a stern warning about the coronavirus crisis.

“We are now having 40-plus thousand new cases a day,” Fauci, the top infectious diseases expert at the National Institutes of Health, told Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA). “I would not be surprised if we go up to 100,000 a day if this does not turn around.”

Right now nearly 2.7 million people in the U.S., at minimum, have been infected with the coronavirus. Deaths are just under 130,000. CDC Chief Dr. Robert Redfield last week said he believes the actual number of cases could be ten times higher.

Watch Dr. Fauci:

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