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Out d’Coup Podcast

Jan 2021

Out d’Coup | Trump Impeached Again; Insurrection Looks Even Worse Each Day; FBI Warning to States; Union Power; Mastriano in Hot Seat; New PA State Caucuses; Greenstein Fail; Free Will Releases

Donald Trump is the first president in U.S. history to be impeached twice. Ten Republicans joined Democrats in voting to impeach Trump. No, my representative was not one of them. 

As the days go by we find out that the head of the Capitol police lie, the FBI released a report ahead of the insurrection warning that there were indications that the Trump supporters were calling for “war.”  And now the FBI is warning that State Capitol buildings may now be targets over the weekend. 

FBI investigators looking into Wednesday’s right-wing insurrection are starting to look at legislators who may have coordinated with organizers of the mob. 

Representative Aryanna Pressley confirmed that the panic buttons in her office were ripped out before the insurrection and Representative James Clyburn confirmed that his private office where he does most of his work was sacked leading to suspicions of an inside job. 

Conan the Barbarian releases a video calling Wednesday’s insurrection, “America’s Kristallnacht.” 

Parler is gone (for now) and the GOP is crying about it. 

James Comey - yes, THAT James Comey, is actually out there calling for Biden to pardon Trump. Yeah, that guy who helped hand Trump the presidency back in 2016. 

DC Hotel workers from UNITE HERE Local hint at a wildcat strike ahead of the inauguration to help stave off any repeat of last Wednesday’s insurrection. In a statement, the union said, “We are calling on hotels in the DC region to close ahead of inauguration, unless they are hosting security personnel. Any hotel that stays open must permit workers to stay home and/or leave the moment they feel unsafe.”

Fast Food workers are calling for a nationwide strike on Monday, January 18, to urge the Biden administration to raise the minimum wage to at least $15/hour. 

It’s been another wild week for Pennsylvania State Senator Doug Mastriano

WHYY reported that Senator Mastriano used $3,400 in campaign cash to pay for busses to take insurrectionists to Washington DC.

Media Matters reported that Doug Mastriano frequently goes on Q Anon associated podcasts and in recent weeks called the effort to overturn the election a “death match with the Republican Party.”  

Mastriano is also calling on Trump supporters to stand-down this weekend as insurrectionists plan on rallying outside the Pennsylvania capitol this weekend and all of next week.  In a facebook post, he stated: Please do not participate in rallies or protests over the next 10 days.  “Let’s focus on praying for our nation during these troubling times.”

Frank Scavo, a former congressional candidate from northeastern Pennsylvania, organized a bus trip from Old Forge to last week’s insurrection and was caught repeatedly lying about his involvement in the insurrection.  First he told reporters he was nowhere near the capitol, then he told them that he was close to the capitol but didn’t go inside and now there is photographic evidence that he was inside the capitol during the insurrection.

Pennsylvania Republicans move forward with their plans to gerrymander the Pennsylvania Supreme Court in response to Republicans losing three Supreme Court Seats in 2015.  Republicans are using recent PA Supreme Court rulings during the 2020 election as excuses for their latest attack on the court.  

In happier news, State Senator Jim Brewster won his final court battle and is now seated. 

State Representative Elizabeth Fielder has been named the chair for the newly formed Progressive Policies for Working People subcommittee.  The new subcommittee will be part of the Pennsylvania House Democratic Policy Committee and will give progressive lawmakers more of a legislative voice within the House Democratic Caucus. 

In more good news for state politics, the crew heading the Pennsylvania Legislative Climate Caucus is looking good. The Caucus will be Chaired by Rep. Danielle Friel Otten, D-Chester; the vice chair will be Rep. Nancy Guenst, D-Montgomery; and, Rep. Rick Krajewski, D-Philadelphia, will serve as Secretary. If you don’t know Nancy Guenst, we’ll tell you about the note she posted to her office door for potential insurrectionists. 

PASSHE Chancellor Greenstein has trouble maintaining the good-guy, Chancellor McDreamy schtick in a open Spotlight PA interview on Zoom last night. 

What are we doing with our “free time.” 

Free Will Brewing has some new releases. We'll give you the details in today's Last Call. 

Jan 2021

Out d’Coup | A New Year and Already an Insurrection; Historic Dem Senate Wins in GA; PA Senate Repubs Craziness; Kutztown Pres Gets COVID; Fetterman; Space News; Free Will Releases

Four (now five) people are dead and many more injured after radical Trumpsters lay siege to the U.S. Capitol building. Decades of the GOP stoking the fires of racism, conspiracy theories, and ideologically driven media is coming home to roost. Fire’s like that. Only fools believe that they can tame a wildfire. 

After hours of delays due to the Trumpster insurrection, the results of the Electoral College Vote was officially counted and Joe Biden and Kamala Harris will be sworn into office in less than two weeks. 

It’s time to break out your copies of Timothy Snyder’s On Tyranny, or pick up a copy if you don’t have one yet. The escalating violence is part of the authoritarian playbook. This does not bode well for 2021. 

Some Democrats initially tried to simply “get back to normal” following the failed coup, but it’s becoming increasingly impossible for them to do so. Pressured by Democratic House and Senate members, Pelosi and Schumer are now calling for Trump’s removal though the 25th Amendment or impeachment. This is a quickly developing story. 

Congresswoman Katherine Clark told CNN this morning that House Democrats are preparing an impeachment vote by the middle of next week if Trump isn’t removed by the 25th amendment. 

All of that happened after Democrats scored historic victories in the Georgia runoff elections. Rafael Warnock and Jon Ossoff victories give Democrats control of the Senate with Kamala Harris as the tie breaker. 

And THAT came after Trump was recorded trying to intimidate Georgia election officials to give him enough votes to give the Georgia election to Trump. 

The other big news of the week seems almost trivial at this point. 

Pennsylvania Senate Republicans this week gave their one preview of what we saw unfold in DC this week. PA Senate Republicans led by Senate President Pro Tempore Jake Corman refused to seat incumbent, reelected State Senator Jim Brewster. Corman and Senate Republicans forcefully seized control from Lt. Governor John Fetterman who was presiding over the session.

John Fetterman hinted about his candidacy for the United State Senate on twitter this morning.

Kutztown University President Kenneth Hawkinson announced that he has tested positive for COVID. Kutztown University has some of the worst COVID numbers in PA higher education after Hawkinson demanded a return to in-person classes in Fall 2020. Kutztown has more than 430 confirmed cases of COVID among students and staff. Hawkinson’s announcement comes at a time of spiking COVID cases in Berks County, passing 25,000 cases this week. 

And in more Kutztown University news, a man in a Kutztown hat was captured on film assaulting an AP photojournalist at the Trumpster insurrection. It’s good to be golden, I guess. 

The full 2021 calendar for space launches and missions is out. We’ll have links and highlights for what looks to be a pretty active year in space. 

And, of course, we’ll take you through some of the Free Will Brewing releases ready for 2021. 

Dec 2020

Out d’Coup | Vaccines Roll Out; No Xmas Presents in the Mail; Relief Bill; Deb Haaland; Russian Hack; Proudboys in DC; PA Cops and COVID; Great Conjunction; Asteroids; Expanse; New Free Will Releases

Vaccines finally roll out across the U.S. But, when you’ve got an incompetent federal government its never going to go smoothly. Good thing that Moderna’s vaccine just got approval too. That can’t come soon enough as COVID-19 is now killing more than 3,000 people a day. 

Sorry kids “you’re not going to get your Christmas presents” in time for the holidays as USPS sorting facilities are stuffed to the brink with packages waiting to go out.  Who could have thought that the systematic destruction of the USPS in order to rig the 2020 election would ruin the holidays? It’s a GOP war on Christmas.

Lawmakers are inching closer to an agreement for a new COVID relief/stimulus bill. However, negotiations hit a roadblock after PA’s own Senator Pat Toomey “argued for an extra condition to be added to the package, limiting the ability of the Federal Reserve to lend money via emergency programs,” according to Business Insider. McConnell said that negotiations are likely to continue into the weekend as a government shutdown looms. Today is the deadline to avert a government shutdown unless the deadline is extended again. The latest version of the stimulus bill reportedly contains $300 extra in weekly unemployment and $600 direct checks to workers. 

AOC told The Intercept that Pelosi and Schumer need to go, but progressives have no real plan at this point for a replacement. 

Joe Biden tapped Deb Haaland to head the Department of the Interior. She’ll be the first Native American cabinet secretary in U.S. history. The appointment is especially meaningful because the Department of the Interior has had a fraught relationship with indigenous tribes since the founding of the country. Biden also appointed Michael Regan to be the first African-American to head the EPA. 

Apparent Russian hack has penetrated more U.S. government and corporate systems that you can imagine. The Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) say that the hack began in March and that the hack “poses a grave risk to the federal government” just ahead of Joe Biden and Kamala Harris taking office. The hack came to light only after the cybersecurity firm FireEye asid it had been hacked and its clients, including the U.S. government was at risk. 

Betsy DeVos urged Department of Education career staffers to “be the resistance” against the Biden administration. According to POLITICO, Devos told them “Let me leave you with this plea: Resist...Be the resistance against forces that will derail you from doing what’s right for students. In everything you do, please put students first — always.” Dept. of Ed staffers and teachers across the country reportedly spit coffee out their noses and fell off chairs in the hilarity of the remarks. 

Proudboys descended on DC last weekend. Four people got stabbed and the little fascists tore down Black Lives Matter banners from Black churches. 

“Defund the Police” you say?  This isn’t a laughing matter as the coronavirus is beginning to decimate police departments across the Commonwealth.   Over 500 Philadelphia Police officers have called out sick because of the virus in the last week.  

Philly 911 dispatchers, and union workers, put the Philadelphia Police Department on blast for their unsafe working conditions during the pandemic. Over 30 dispatchers have contracted the virus, and according to Billy Penn, many of those cases have happened within the past month. The Police department is using “makeshift cardboard barriers” and “some plastic barriers” to keep workers separated during the latest outbreak. 

And at least four Philadelphia police officers have died of the virus.

While this is happening in Philadelphia, there are rumors swirling around the midstate that a handful of police departments in Cumberland County are non-operational due to the virus’ outbreak.

Monday, December 21 - the Winter Solstice - will be the great conjunction. In the early evening, you will be able to see Jupiter and Saturn come together in the sky. The two planets have appeared closer together each night in the lead up to the conjunction. The last time the planets appeared this close in the sky it was 1623.  Tips for viewing.

Japan successfully retrieved the first samples from an asteroid from a capsule from the Hayabusa2 probe. The probe visited the asteroid known as Ryugu on December 6. The Japanese space agency released pictures of the dark granular sample on the Hayabusa2 twitter account

SpaceNews announced its award winners this week: Of the winners, the MARS2020 program won for Government Mission of the Year and SpaceX Demo2 won for Commercial Mission of the year. 

New season of The Expanse is now streaming on Amazon Prime. 

Free Will has new releases. They’re going back to their Saturday release dates. Judo Refinancing - Hazy IPA with Key Limes and Milk Suga; Corvus Idaeus - Imperial Stout with Raspberry, Chocolate, and Milk Sugar; and, not a new release, but one of my favorite beers of the season, Black Currant Chocolate Mash - Sour Ale brewed black currant purée, chocolate, and milk sugar. Order for pick up or delivery to any PA address at https://freewillbrewing.store/.

Dec 2020

Out d’Coup | Record COVID Deaths; Pfizer Vaccine; No COVID Relief; Biden and NAACP; Newsmax Beats Fox; Texas Sues Democracy; Wolf Has COVID; Fetterman Tweets; Artemis News; Starship Boom; Free Will

It’s official. More people died from COVID-19 yesterday than died in the 9/11 attacks. 3,067 died yesterday. Daily deaths are now higher than any time during the pandemic. 

The FDA is set to approve the Pfizer vaccine today after an independent panel gave it the thumbs up yesterday. 

Turns out the Trump administration under ordered the Pfizer vaccine

A relief package is nowhere to be found as Mitch McConnell demands that corporations be freed from all liability for putting employees and consumers at risk during the pandemic. The AP reports that “an emerging $900 billion COVID-19 aid package from a bipartisan group of lawmakers all but collapsed Thursday after Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said Republican senators won’t support $160 billion in state and local funds as part of a potential trade-off in the deal.” Apparently, McConnell plans to hold Americans hostage until gets his top priority corporate liability shield. 

Ryan Grim of The Intercept published audio of a contentious and at times cringe-worthy meeting between Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, and Civil Rights leaders from the NAACP. Biden recycled unsubstantiated claims that “defund the police” caused Democrats to lose House seats, scolded attendees for suggesting he take bold administrative action, and shouted that he was the only one who ran on healing the soul of America. 

In our continued decent into the the world of Mad Max, water futures will soon be traded on Wall Street for the first time just like oil and gold. The marketization of water scarcity is made possible by the 2-year-old Nasdaq Veles California Water Index. What could go wrong? 

Denmark announces an end to oil exploration as it turns away from fossil fuels. 

The Texas attorney general and 18 other attorneys general are appealing the the Supreme Court to throw out the votes from the swing states that voted for Biden. A brief filed by Pennsylvania’s Attorney General Josh Shapiro called the lawsuit a “seditious abuse of the judicial process” and urged the justices to “send a clear and unmistakable signal that such abuse must never be replicated.” Trump wants Ted Cruz to argue the case. 

And for the first time, Newsmax got higher ratings than Fox News. And it is reported that Newsmax is trying to poach Fox news employees with higher salaries and benefits.

Governor Wolf announces new COVID restrictions one day after he announced that he tested positive for the virus. 

The National Guard is called it to assist in Mount Saint Macrina Manor nursing home in Uniontown, PA nursing home as cases spike. 

Lt. Gov. John Fetterman is feeling bad for the simps

Incoming Senate Majority Leader Kim Ward told the New York Times that “her house would be bombed” if she didn’t put her name on that letter asking Congress to overturn the Pennsylvania election.

Who are you going to call when stealing an election?  GHOSTBUSTERS!  That’s right.  It turns out one of Rudy Giuliani’s star witnesses happened to be a ghost hunter and it gets worse from there. Jesse Richard Morgan was the self proclaimed ghost hunter Rudy named in his lawsuit and it turns out that Morgan has a long criminal record that includes trying to poison his girlfriend while she was eating pizza.  Gotta exercise those demons somehow. 

Bethlehem brewery owner says he’ll stay open in the face of new COVID restrictions. Seven Siren’s Brewing Company co-owner Joshua Drivers told LehighValleyLive “We’re just not shutting our doors.” Having just opened in 2020 - just 28 days before the pandemic hit, the brewery did not qualify for any local, state, or federal aid. “Put it this way,” Drivers said, “if we close down for three weeks, we lose everything. We don’t close down for three weeks, we can lose everything.” These are the kind of choices small businesses across the country are being forced to make in the face of an incompetent federal gov’t response to the pandemic. 

Former owner of the Central Penn Business Journal - Dave Schankweiler - is gearing up to run for mayor of Harrisburg.  The out-of-town Republican turned Democrat hired a conservaitve firm to handle messaging and media & the design of his logo, which strikingly resembles the pornhub logo

NASA announces the 18 astronauts tapped for the Artemis mission to the moon. The team of nine men and nine women is also one of the most diverse groups of astronauts ever assembled. 

SpaceX’s Starship SN8 test was explosive. Literally. 

Do alien’s exist?  Former director of the Isreali space program thinks so!

Free Will has got some awesome stuff available for the holidays. I just picked up four packs of their Black Current Chocolate Mash, Pumpkin Pie Mash, Special Cookie, and Under Dawn’s Red Sun. I’ll tell you all about them in today’s Last Call. 

Dec 2020

Out d’Coup | Pandemic Rages; UN Climate Report; Vaccinate Presidents; GOP Frankensteins Rising in GA; Biden Nominations; COVID Tyrant Mastriano; Don’t Play Nice; His Dark Materials; Free Will Releases

The U.S. is breaking COVID-19 records once again. According to the COVID Tracking Project, for the first time, over 100,000 people are currently hospitalized. That’s 65% higher than any time since the beginning of the pandemic. Yesterday, 2,706 Americans died as a result of COVID. And, for the first time, more than 210,000 new cases were reported in a single day. Not good. 

On Wednesday, the U.N. State of the Climate report was released and it was not encouraging. U.N. Secretary General António Guterres put it bluntly: “To put it simply, the state of the planet is broken.” 2020 will be one of the three hottest years on record, marine heatwaves warmed 80 percent of the world’s oceans, and triple-digit heat waves hit...are your ready for this?....triple-digit heat waves hit Siberia. In a speech at Columbia University summarizing the report’s findings, Guterres said, “Dear friends, humanity is waging war on nature. This is suicidal,” Guterres said. “Nature always strikes back, and it is already doing so with growing force and fury.”

Former presidents Obama, Bush, and Clinton are all planning on getting the COVID-19 vaccine publicly as part of a campaign to build confidence. President-elect Joe Biden said he will join them.  

Pfizer announced yesterday that they will have to cut in half the number of vaccines available in the first batch after they identified a problem in the supply lines. 

Republicans are finally having to deal with their Frankenstein monsters. Have you been following what’s happening in Georgia? Rabid Trumpers are calling on supporters not to vote for the Republican candidates in January’s senate run-off elections. In an off the rails rally featuring self-appointed Trump defender Sydney Powell and L. Lin Wood were more interested in locking up the Republican Governor and Secretary of State than supporting Republican Senate candidates. 

What do you think of the folks that Joe Biden is nominating for his cabinet and administration? We’ll give you some of our thoughts. 

Rudy Giuliani's traveling circus came to the Wyndham...in Gettysburg...off Route 15 last week & and it was just as big as a shit show as you expected it to be.  Senator Mastriano hosted the superspreader PA Senate GOP Policy Committee to spread conspiracies and COVID.  After the show hearing, Mastriano and his two sons were pulled from a coup-plotting meeting in the White House after they tested positive for COVID.

The response from the Senate GOP was crickets.  Yes, actual crickets.  Senator Judy Ward came down with COVID after the meeting.  It took Senator Jake Corman a week to respond to the press saying “mistakes were made” and Senators Aument and Martin - who did not attend the hearing - published an oped blasting disinformation coming from their own party.  That response would have helped three weeks ago, but welcome to the party!

In response to the election, Harrisburg Republicans are getting ready to disenfranchise voters attacking vote-by-mail, signature tests, limiting how counties can cure ballots, and much more! 

The York Dispatch editorial board comes out with a scathing editorial about PA State Senator, and wannabe Governor, Doug Mastriano. Mastriano’s COVID-positive Trump event and appearance on Steve Bannon’s podcast calling for a resolution to overturn the PA election results and hand state electors to Trump was a bridge too far. The editorial made it plain, “Mastriano's shocking call for tyranny — rooted solely on the fact his side lost — was merely the conclusion of a week where, through his own actions, the senator was exposed for the craven oligarch he really is.” Here, here.

His Dark Materials. Musk says he still wants to get Moon by 2024. Scientists are saying that underground brine on Mars could be a good source of oxygen on the red planet. 

Free Will Brewing releases as we head into the Winter months.

Nov 2020

Out d’Coup | Clown Coup; Biden, You Kidding Me; Climate Crisis; Fight for the Future; BLM Push Back; Charlie Brown Xmas; PA Dem Senate Wins; PA Org Profiles; COVID; Space News; Free Will Releases

Trump continues to wage a battle to overturn the election. Republican leaders from Michigan’s two legislative chambers are scheduled to meet with Trump today to strategize about how to overturn the election. Guiliani started melting during an off the rails press conference.  Trump has lost 32 out of 33 lawsuits so far. But that’s not stopping him. Lindsay Graham potentially commits felony election crime by attempting to lean on Georgia’s Secretary of State to throw out all the mail ballots from counties with a high rate of signature mismatch. 

Erin Brockovich, the environmental activist who most Americans came to know through the Julia Roberts film based on her life, wrote a piece in the Guardian asking the question on most progressives minds: “Joe Biden: Are You Kidding Me?” Brockovich focused on Biden’s decision to choose Michael McCabe to head the EPA. McCabe is a former communications consultant for the chemical giant DuPont. 

It wasn’t just the EPA, though. Biden’s pick to head the Office of Public Engagement, Louisiana congressman Cedric Richmond, also raised red flags for progressives. Richmond is among the top Democratic recipients of fossil fuel money in the House. 

After a year-long scientific mission in the Arctic, scientists warn that if bold, expansive action is not taken to address the climate crisis immediately, we face a very grim future. 

Some Democratic Party leaders are being COVID hypocrites. This week Senator Diane Feinstein was filmed in the Capitol without a mask talking to a group of people; Gavin Newsom was caught maskless on video at an indoor birthday party for a lobbyist held at the exclusive Napa Valley restaurant, French Laundry. 

Nancy Pelosi was re-elected, despite previous promises that she would step down. 

Black Lives Matter activists want to see conservative Democrats’ receipts for their claims that “defund the police” messaging was responsible for down-ballot losses. Still waiting. As the national director of the Working Families Party, Maurice Mitchell told Politico, “This is the tip of the spear. They are using this ‘defund’ fight as a proxy for a broader ideological fight.”

Marco Rubio lays out GOP plans for the Biden administration: they plan on blocking all Biden’s cabinet appointments because Democrats mean.

The Rockefeller Christmas Tree was set in place last Saturday. The Charlie Brown Christmas tree was set in place last Saturday and to nobody’s surprise, it was as scraggly as 2020. And, they found a baby owl trapped inside. Maybe 2020 will end like the Charlie Brown Christmas special after all. 

China just set up the world’s largest trading bloc

And speaking of the Charlie Brown Christmas special, after loads of public pressure, Apple TV - who bought the exclusive rights to the Charlie Brown specials - gave in and will allow the show to air on PBS alongside Apple TV. It will air on December 13. Oh, by the way, the Grinch Who Stole Christmas will air on NBC on Friday, November 27th. Perfect for closing out the war on Thanksgiving and preparing our assault on the war on Christmas. 

A couple of big wins in PA Democratic Party leadership. Two outspoken progressives, just won leadership roles in the PA Senate Democratic leadership fight. Katie Muth will take over the reigns from Lisa Boscola as Senate Dems policy chair. And, Maria Collett replaced outgoing Senator Larry Farnese to take over as caucus secretary.

Refinery 29 published a profile on some of Pennsylvania’s women of color organizers who have spent the past four years organizing throughout the commonwealth and how their organizations were able to put together the Count Every Vote rallies.

Former Pennsylvania Lt Governor Mikey Stacks made a surprise acting appearance once again.  This time he was moonlighting for a campaign to Save Stonehenge and prevent the construction of a tunnel that may destroy the world heritage site.  

Pennsylvania, like many other states, is exploding with COVID cases.

Yesterday afternoon, Dr. Rachel Levine, PA’s Health Secretary, laid out the state’s vaccination plans, assuming the continued success on the vaccine front. Levine reminded people that while a vaccine may be available by the end of next month, the supply will be limited. In the meantime, Mask Up Til March would be a good slogan. 

Several PASSHE University presidents pack their bags and get out of Dodge in the wake of planned university mergers and layoffs. At a short Board of Governors’ meeting on Wednesday, Chancellor Greenstein praised the “breadth and audacity” of the mergers, mass layoffs, program eliminations, and deep cuts, calling them “ambitious and audacious goals.” 

SpaceX officially launches the first crewed mission to the International Space Station from the Kennedy Space Station. Baby Yoda was on board. 

Astronomers are proposing a huge telescope on the Moon to further research about the Big Bang. According to The Hill, “ University of Texas astronomer Anna Schauer nicknamed the proposed telescope the ‘Ultimately Large Telescope,’ adding that it would have a liquid mirror over 300 feet in diameter.”

Free Will Brewing has got some great releases for your quarantine Turkey Day. And, the 2020 Ralphius bottle variants are announced and will be available on Free Will’s online store at 9 am on Saturday, 11/21 for presale pick up on Black Friday, 11/27.

Nov 2020

Out d’Coup | Bye-Bye Donny; Biden and Harris Get to Work; COVID Explosion; Climate Crisis; Four Seasons Total Landscaping; PA Republican Show Hearings; New Nazis; Next for NASA; Free Will Releases

It’s rather old news by now...but Joe Biden and Kamala Harris are now officially president and vice-president-elect! Woot! And the celebrations exploded. 

It was another record-setting week of COVID-19 cases across the nation. The U.S. has more than 10.5 million cases and 240,00 deaths as of last night. The CDC is projecting there will be upwards of 282,000 COVID deaths by December 5. 

Pfizer and its German partner BioNTech announced that in initial trials, they have a COVID vaccine that is 90% effective. We’re still months away from the vaccine being widely available, but the Pharma giant is asking for emergency approval from the FDA to speed up production. 

Trump’s lawyers got bupkis. 

Georgia’s presidential elections results are going to a hand recount as Democrats and Republicans gear up for high stakes Senate run-off elections in January. 

Conservative and corporate Democrats lose their shit on progressives on an election post-mortem conference call. Maybe it’s because they are feeling the impending sunset on their neoliberal paradigm? AOC, having none of it, gives an interview to the New York Times, diagnosing the Dems organizational malpractice. Despite centrists’ attempts to blame black activists and socialism, even Doug Jones and Beto O’Rourke are making the same case. 

New scientific research published in the journal Scientific Reports, suggests that we may already be beyond the much-feared “point of no return” when it comes to climate change. According to the study, even if we were to stop emitting all greenhouse gasses by the end of 2020, we are still on-track for warming of 3 degrees Celsius (5.4 degrees Fahrenheit) by 2500. The only hope, according to the report, is a massive investment in carbon capture technology, in addition to getting off fossil fuels. 

2020 officially set the record for the most hurricanes in the Atlantic - because of course, it did. New research shows that because of hotter sea surface temperatures, hurricanes and tropical storms take much longer to weaken over land, causing much more damage than storms 50 years ago. 

Russian Researchers find large areas of methane gas being released from melting subsea permafrost from the sea bed on the East Siberian Arctic Shelf. Yeah, I know, buzzkill. Just needed to be really clear that a Green New Deal is not just a progressive slogan; it’s imperative for a livable future. 

That so-called “whistleblower” from the Postal Service from Erie, PA that Republican operatives were hanging their hats on in their “voter fraud” cases, tells Federal Agents that Project Veritas actually wrote his affidavit. You remember them, right? You know, the little pranksters that took down ACORN through deceptive video footage? 

Lawn and Order. Make America Rake Again. In Sod We Trust. Yes, these are just a few of the hot t-shirts you can get from Four Seasons Total Landscaping, the spot that Rudy Juliani and Co. booked to host a press conference in Philly. It was rumored that he stopped off at the adult toy store next door before moseying on over to the crematorium to check out their offerings. That song drop in our intro today is from UK-based comedian, Michael Spicer. You can follow him on Twitter at @MrMichaelSpicer

Pennsylvania Republicans are gearing up for show hearings next week in the House and Senate.  They will poke and prod the election results to create their own baseless narrative about the 2020 election and use that to curtail voting rights in Pennsylvania for years to come.

COVID cases are exploding in Pennsylvania just like the rest of the country. On Wednesday, PSEA called for a shift to remote learning for 38 counties that meet guidelines set by the state departments of Health and Education.

The Proud Boys are having a little post-election schism. Yup, white nationalist Kyle Chapman says he’s sick of pretending not to be a Nazi. Apparently, the Proud Boys are too soft for his liking. 

Some very sad news from Kutztown University. A student was found dead in Dixon Hall, a campus dorm. 

Four astronauts are scheduled to launch tomorrow from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida aboard a SpaceX crew capsule as part of the NASA and SpaceX Crew-1 Mission to the International Space Station. 

NASA administrator, Jim Bridenstine says he plans on leaving the agency when Biden takes office. Biden has already announced his NASA transition team, led by Ellen Stofan, the current head of the Smithsonian’s Air and Space Museum and former NASA chief scientist from 2013-2016. Looks like NASA will re-prioritize climate research and push back the Artemis Moon mission until 2028, a timeline more consistent with the House Science Committee’s proposed bill. 

Sean took some awesome photos this week and Sean is now having to quarantine. 

Free Will new releases: Another Roadblock - Helles Bock Lager. Brewed in collaboration with Annihilated Homebrew Club out of Lambertville, NJ; Special Cookie - Imperial Spiced Brown Ale with Vanilla, Cinnamon, Brown Sugar, Cardamom, Ginger, and Milk Sugar; Free Will’s version of Black is Beautiful, a Robust Coffee Porter, is a collaboration with Harris Family Brewery and First Sip Brew Box will be released this Saturday; and, the 2020 Ralphius bottle variants are announced and will be available on Free Will’s online store at 9 am on 11/21 for presale pick up on Black Friday, 11/27.

Oct 2020

Out d’Coup | Vote ASAP; Voter Suppression; COVID-19 Spikes; Rep. Scott Perry Campaign Steals Sean’s Photo; Philly Police Kill Walter Wallace Jr.; Galactic Capitalism; Moon H2O; Free Will Releases

You are out of time to mail in your ballot. The Trump administration’s efforts to slow down the mail are having an impact, especially in key Democratic areas in swing states. On Tuesday, David Becker, the executive director of the nonpartisan Center for Election Innovation & Research, told the Washington Post, “If you haven’t requested a mail ballot yet, it’s too late.” Ari Berman, the senior writer at Mother Jones, and author of Give Us the Ballot, went even further, telling Democracy Now, “my message to voters in these states and other states is to drop your ballot off. It’s too late to mail your ballots back in states like Wisconsin that have Election Day deadlines, and 30 states have a deadline of Election Day for when your ballot has to be received. But even if you live in a state like Pennsylvania and North Carolina, don’t leave it to chance that your vote can be thrown out.”

Berman's advice is critical as more than 42 million out of the 92 million mail-in ballots have not been returned as of Wednesday, according to the Washington Post. 11 million are Democratic; 8 million Republican; and, 10 million unaffiliated. 

Brett Kavanaugh’s opinion in this week’s Supreme Court decision regarding the counting of mail-in ballots in Wisconsin seems to be setting the stage for a repeat of the Supreme Court’s intervention in Bush v. Gore. 

This week saw an unprecedented number of legal actions by Republicans in states across the country to suppress voting. From Wisconsin to Iowa to North Carolina and, yes, to right here in PA, the GOP is looking to disenfranchise hundreds of thousands of voters.  

Meanwhile, Republicans are narrowing the early voting gap in several key states, including Florida, North Carolina, Iowa, and Nevada according to CNN. 

According to a story on NPR this week, polling places in Iowa and some other states have been closed due to COVID-19, at least that’s the official explanation. In Iowa, about 30% of the state’s registered voters are affected by the closures - about 670,000 voters. The CDC has recommended keeping or increasing the existing number of polling locations because of the pandemic. Seems like election officials are doing the opposite in some states. 

According to Politico, hackers stole about $2.3 million from the Wisconsin Republican Party account devoted to re-electing Trump. 

Another round of tapes are released by Bob Woodward, this time featuring Jared Kushner praising Trump’s move to take the coronavirus response away from the doctors and being a cheerleader for opening up. Jared also cites as one of Trump’s greatest achievements as getting rid of the “over-confident idiots” and replacing them with “people who kind of know their place.” 

And let’s not forget the latest warning from the White House coronavirus task force this week. Dr. Anthony Fauci told CNBC this week, “If things do not change, if they continue on the course we’re on, there’s going to be a whole lot of pain in this country with regard to additional cases and hospitalizations, and deaths.” 

Rep. Scott Perry rips off Sean Kitchen’s photo to use in an attack ad against Eugene DePasquale in the 10th congressional district. The theft of intellectual property is one hell of a way to close out the campaign. 

Rep. Jordan Harris remains in the hot seat as Philly Power Research releases an infographic showing the tidal wave of cash - $600,000 - that Harris took from Jeffrey Yass, the libertarian billionaire who funds school privatization efforts. And this, year, Yass and his major charter school PAC, Students First, is looking to take out Democrats in close races across the state. The infographic re-presents Stephen Caruso’s reporting in the Pennsylvania Capital-Star about Harris’s cozy relationship with charter schools. 

More uprisings break out in Philadelphia after Philadelphia police murder Walter Wallace Jr during a mental health crisis.  In response to the uprisings, fascist US Attorney General Bill McSwain charged a prominent Black Lives Matter activist - who is now sitting in Allenwood Federal Penitentiary - with federal arson charges. And, yes, Gov. Wolf called out the National Guard

On Thursday a movement of Republican-controlled counties announced that they will not begin to canvas or count votes until Wednesday, November 4th.  With multiple supreme court justices thinking that vote counting should stop on election night, who knows what is going to happen. 

Nikil Saval had an awesome article published in the New Republic this week: “The Future of the Democratic Party is in Pennsylvania” “Why a new liberal-left coalition could be the key to unlocking America’s rural conservative vote. 

The Hubble telescope has given researchers exceptional images of the asteroid 16 Psyche, which will be the destination of an unmanned NASA spacecraft to launch in 2022. The asteroid is of special interest because it seems to largely made of metal, suggesting it could be a former planetary core. While the scientific mission seeks to uncover more knowledge of planetary formation, I am sure our Galactic Capitalists are more interested in the metals - their estimated worth is in the range of $10,000 quadrillion. That’s a 1 followed by 19 zeros. 

New studies show that water is more common on the Moon than was previously thought. Turns out, it’s not just confined to the shadows of craters in the southern polar region. Researchers have now detected water at one of the largest craters in the sunlit region of the Moon. 

Free Will Brewing: DDH Love Letter from the 90s; Garcia’s Forest; and, Perish, brand new Hazy IPA. https://freewillbrewing.store/

Outro music: Jonathan Mann, “There are no people in the future.” @songadaymann.

Oct 2020

Out d’Coup | Unions and Activists Prep to Defend Democracy; Voter Suppression; OxyContin Makers Pay; PA Blue Wave; AOC on Twitch; Space News; Free Will releases; Star Trek Discovery

“We cannot depend on our institutions to guarantee that our votes will determine the next president” is what a leaked National AFL-CIO PowerPoint stated this week.  The AFL-CIO had a meeting planned with State Federations and union leaders from around concerning a Trump Coup - yes, and we mean Coup - and how unions will mobilize in the days after the election.  However, that meeting was canceled after the slideshow was leaked to the press.  

Randi Weingarten - President of the American Federation of Teachers - told Bloomberg: “There’s many of us that have talked about how we need to count every vote, how we are very concerned that the president - that you take his words seriously when he says he's not sure he’d agree to a peaceful transfer of power. And the labor movement is of the community that needs to prepare.”

Activists around Pennsylvania are planning for massive protests if there is widespread efforts to disrupt the election or if Trump seeks to remain in power with the help of his appointments to the Supreme Court. The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that activists, clergy, unions, and liberal advocates are signing on to “Nobody Comes for Philly,” a pledge to vote then “not rest until our state counts every vote.” 

At least 545 children who were separated at the border under Trump’s brutal immigration policies are still without their parents. Worse, immigration advocates say their parents cannot be located. 

According to a report in Politico, Bernie Sanders may be making a play to be Secretary of Labor in a Biden administration. 

There was a debate last night. We’ll check in on that. 

The after-effects of colleges and universities returning to campus amid the pandemic are now manifesting in vulnerable populations in college towns. The Washington Post reports that a month after students returned to college in La Cross, Wisconsin, home of three different colleges, the city is seeing a devastating spike in coronavirus cases, leading to the deaths of at least 19 residents in long-term care facilities. Until this week, no long-term care residents had died due to the virus. Brace yourself, everyone. 

OxyContin manufacturer Purdue Pharma tells the Department of Justice, “Ooops, our bad,” and pleads guilty to three felony counts for defrauding the federal government and lying about the company’s efforts to flood communities with OxyContin in order to reap billions in profits. The company will pay $225 million as part of a $2 billion criminal forfeiture. Purdue still faces a $3.5 billion criminal fine and has agreed to pay $2.8 billion as part of a civil settlement. The owner of Purdue, the Sackler family, will also have to pay $225 million in civil fines. 

AOC goes on Twitch to play Among Us and get out the vote. It becomes one of the biggest Twitch streams ever. And, it turns out, she’s pretty good at Among Us, too. The cred just keeps stacking up!

Is it time to start talking about a blue-wave in Pennsylvania? Cook Political Report moved the Pennsylvania House from “lean Republican” to “toss-up” while groups like Emily’s List dumped a million dollars into Pennsylvania for down-ballot races. 

On the mail-in-ballot front, close to one-million Democrats have returned their ballots giving them a 680,000 voter edge over Republicans.  Of those voting by mail, over 300,000 Pennsylvanians who sat out in 2016 applied for a mail-in-ballot and 70% of those who sat out in 2016 but are voting by mail in 2020 are Democrats.

Trump’s campaign has been videotaping Philadelphia voters at ballot drop boxes, leading to warnings of voter intimidation by Pennsylvania’s attorney general, Josh Shapiro. The Trump campaign has claimed that they are photographing and videotaping voters who might be dropping off multiple ballots. 

Fake Proud Boys emails sent to voters saying “vote for Trump, or else!

Amazon Web Services, AWS, launches a space division called Aerospace and Satellite Solutions. According to the company, the purpose of the new division is to help “government and commercial space entities become more agile and flexible by making use of the cloud.” 

After two non-functioning satellites nearly collided in orbit, there are renewed calls to begin dealing with the millions of pieces of space junk orbiting the Earth. Dr. Moriba Jah, director of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics at the University of Texas Austin, has called for space environmentalism, telling Axios, "Orbital debris is not climate change, but the ecosystem requires environmental protection...Whatever narratives we have for maritime, land and air, these environmental protection narratives need to have, 'and space.'"

Free Will Brewing’s Sharing Size release last Saturday was amazing. 

Free Will hosts Sour Sunday, this coming Sunday, October 25 from 11-6. 

Star Trek Discovery rocks.

Oct 2020

Out d’Coup | SCOTUS Hearings; Post-Election Action Plans; PA Mail Voting; Voting Rights Wins; PASSHE Cutting 350 Faculty; Wagner Billboard; Star Trek; Artemis Accords; Mars Convention; Free Will Beer

Trump and Biden hold dueling town halls. Looks like our corporate media is playing the money game just like 2016.

SCOTUS hearings for Amy Comey Barrett were pretty much a disaster - for the Democrats. One thing did become clear, however: Diane Feinstein needs to go. It’s time for a clean sweep of the Democratic Party leadership. 

COVID is on the rise again as the White House signals they are embracing the wack-job herd immunity approach to killing more Americans. 

Polls continue to indicate Biden has a huge lead. 

Voter suppression continues.

Get ready for the day after the election. Jonathan Smucker, one of the co-founders of Lancaster Stands-Up, as on the Benjamin Dixon show this week - It would be worth your time to check it out. 

As of this morning, over 680,000 Pennsylvanians have returned their mail-in ballots.  Of those 680,000 ballots, 510,000 came from Democrats while Republicans have only returned 116,000 ballots.

Pennsylvania House Republicans dropped HR 1032 from their agenda after weeks of fight back.  HR 1032 would have allowed Harrisburg Republicans to establish their “election integrity commission” to steal the 2020 election.

In more election-rigging news, multiple Trump lawsuits regarding poll watchers, drop boxes, and satellite voting offices. One lawsuit aimed to stop the Delco County Commissioners from using the Philadelphia Union’s soccer stadium as a location where residents can register to vote, sign up for their mail-in ballots and return their ballots on site. 

Allegheny Dems want Summer Lee and other progressive candidates to pay up, even after they went all-in for their opponents. Sounds to me like the money should be flowing the other direction. 

Bernie Sanders released his endorsements for more than 170 down-ballot races. In PA, Sanders endorsed 11 candidates for the State legislature. We’ll have that list for you. 

The Second Lady of Pennsylvania, Gisele Fetterman, is verbally attacked with racist epithets...and she gets it on tape. And just to prove racists are bi-partisan, a day later, Republican Rep. Aaron Kaufer of Luzerne County found a swastika adorned note on his office door. Kaufer is Jewish. 

The Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education looks to get rid of upwards of 350 faculty members, mostly from universities in Western PA. APSCUF President Jamie Martin spoke at the Board of Governors meeting this week, exposing the sham narrative being hocked PASSHE Chancellor Greenstein. She tells a different narrative of administrative bloat, mismanagement, and dishonest budgeting practices. You know, the stuff we’ve been sounding the alarm bell for nearly a decade here at Raging Chicken. 

Big anniversary this week: It’s the two year anniversary of Scott Wagner freaking out at a billboard. That was probably the dying breath of his gubernatorial campaign.

It’s here. Last night Star Trek: Discovery returned with Season 3 on CBS All Access. I am totally psyched, but I have to admit I didn’t watch it yet and I’ve had to keep my eyes off my social media. I’ll fill you in next week. 

On Wednesday, American astronaut Kate Rubin, and Russian cosmonauts Sergey Ryzhikov and Sergey Kud-Sverchkov made a record-breaking trip to the ISS aboard a Soyuz rocket. The crew made it to the space station in just 3 hours, a trip that has taken about 6 hours since 2013. It used to take upwards of two days. The shortened trip is thanks to a new “fast-track” method that only required two orbits before docking with the ISS. 

The 2020 Mars Society Convention is going on now through Sunday. They’ve taken the convention virtual this year and are inviting the public to join in. You can watch the convention live online. Registration is free, but they recommend a $50 donation. Sessions will feature all the notable Marsheads on topics such as “Next Gen power for Marian life,” “Human Rights as a foundation for a Mars bill of rights,” and “The Martian Urban Cell as the unit for Martian settlements.”

Is Mars too out there for ya? Well, closer to home this week the United States and seven other countries signed NASA’s “Artemis Accords,” which set rules for exploring and settling on the Moon.  And, the one big thing that NASA, under the leadership of Jim Bridenstine, wanted to make clear is that countries can own and use resources they extract from the Moon. Let the mining begin. 

It’s a big weekend at Free Will Brewing. Free Will revealed this year’s special versions of Sharing SIze, their amazing imperial milk stout, a collaboration with Breweries in PA. Free Will also released The Future Is, a Traditional German-style Pilsner. Order for Pekasie pick up or delivery to any PA address at https://freewillbrewing.store/.

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