Wednesday, April 15, 2020

Things really aren’t sparking for me today. Plus, I have a bit of actual paying Work I need to get done by Friday, so we’ll get this done quick and move on.

We’re still knee-deep in COVID-19, with states like New York and California seeing some good news from their efforts despite some right-wing dingbats. Both California’s Gavin Newsom and Michigan’s Gretchen Whitmer are dealing with so far fairly limp recall efforts. This makes the second one Newsom has dealt with in as many months, given California’s rather loose laws about such things. I’m sure he’s bothered.

Whitmer’s is a little more interesting. After enacting the strictest stay-at-home orders in the country, a mess of people who have nothing better to do have been flooding the streets around the capitol and pressing against glass doors like they were zombies in a Romero film. They’re calling it “Operation: Gridlock” and chanting “lock her up,” which sort of gives away the game right there. For her part, Whitmer’s doing what she does and is dealing with all sorts of nutty shit from people who’re probably more upset she dared snap back at Trump.

And boy, has he had a full diaper the last couple of days. Those daily mini-rallies he calls “briefings” have devolved into fit pitching sessions where he yells at reporters for daring to ask him questions, at the World Health Organization for not throwing in with the narrative that blaming this is all on China is the most important thing, and trying to big dick the country’s governors by saying he, as president, has the “final authority” on when the country “re-opens”. On that last one, he has seems to have backed down a bit. Undoubtedly someone showed him that in the Constitution that power does indeed lie with the states, so shut up and sit down.

A lot of this seems to center around a personal feud with New York governor Andrew Cuomo. He keeps tweeting about how the governor “begs” daily for equipment and doesn’t show due gratitude or incomprehensible nonsense about Mutiny On The Bounty. If that’s one of his favorite movies like he claims, he obviously didn’t pay too close attention to it or what happened to Captain Bligh.

His latest weirdness is his threat to adjourn both houses of Congress so he can make recess appointments. He doesn’t really explain why this is necessary, using his nomination of Michael Peck to the U.S. Agency Media who’s been locked up since June 2018, but it has stuck in his craw. Recess appointments are nothing new, of course, but a president shutting down another branch of the government out of pique would probably bring lawsuits.

Closer to home, Gov. Tate Reeves announced today two programs to help Mississippians affected by the coronavirus pandemic as we all hunker down and wait for the boulder to fall on our heads. To give credit where it’s due, they look pretty good, especially in the wake of the one-two punch of COVID-19 and this weekends’ devastating tornadoes. One will help provide childcare for “essential workers” like nurses and sanitation workers, and set up some emergency childcare centers around the state.

The other offers short-term help with mortgage payments and sets up a website where folks can get some help. After applying online, homeowners will be directed to a counselling agency which will help them get the various ducks in a row to receive some of the aid. Up to six months’ worth of cash will be available given different circumstances. A lot of this is being based on how the state distributed federal funds in the wake of the 2008 financial crash. He’s also pretty much shut down the rest of the school year in response to the pandemic, which is probably just as well.

That’s about all I can dig up with the minimum amount of work I’m willing to do today. Like I said, I have Work that will actually see me getting paid. That takes precedent on a low-energy day like today. I make no apologies. I will note that Firaxis Games announced yesterday that a new XCOM game would be released April 24. Subtitled Chimera Squad, it looks to be a bit more story-focused and linear than the 2012 original or its 2016 sequel. Rather than the brutal tactics only of the earlier games, it looks to be more geared towards strategy featuring named characters with differing personalities and abilities.

Not going to lie, I love the XCOM games and consider them the best excuse for spending a grand on a gaming computer a few years back. So I’m pretty pumped up about this. Even better, it’ll be $9.99 until May 1 where it goes up to $19.99. I guess they’re doing something similar to the Far Cry series with their little side games that are often more fun than the main ones.

Anyhow. Now to paying work. Selah.

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