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Out d’Coup Podcast

Jun 2020

Out d’Coup | George Floyd Protests; Trump Autocracy; Protest Crackdown; Defund Police; Progressive PA Primary Wins; Frank Rizzo Statue; Opening PA; SpaceX and NASA; Menzingers; Free Will Releases

Trump threatens to call out the military to suppress protests demanding justice for George Floyd and an end to run-away police violence. In a speech from the Rose Garden, Trump called protesters “terrorists.” In a call to the nation’s Governors, Trump urged them to crack down hard on protesters. In a surprise move, Trump told journalists that he has put U.S. Army General Mark Milley “in charge” of ending the protests. 

Former Defense Secretary General Jim Mattis - the guy that Trump used to love to call “Mad Dog” to boost his testosterone levels - issued a scathing rebuke of Trump’s desire to call out the military to “dominate” protesters. Mattis wrote, "Never did I dream that troops taking that same oath would be ordered under any circumstance to violate the Constitutional rights of their fellow citizens —much less to provide a bizarre photo op for the elected commander-in-chief, with military leadership standing alongside."

George Bush came out after Trump this week. He beat Nancy Pelosi to the punch. Why? Oh, yeah, the Democrats are on vacation. 

Los Angeles mayor, Eric Garcetti, announced that the Los Angeles Police Department will see a budget cut between $100 and $150 million instead of an increase. The money from the LAPD cuts will be invested in communities of color instead. The city will invest in “jobs, education, and healing,” according to Mayor Garcetti. 

Dr. Anthony Fauci, the most prominent member of the White House COVID-19 task force, told the American Medical Association that the U.S. should have 100 million doses of coronavirus vaccine by the beginning of 2021. 

Protests to end police violence and systemic racism exploded across the state. Hundreds of people marched through small towns like Souderton, PA and thousands flooded the streets in Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and other larger cities across the Commonwealth. 

This week showed that pigs can actually fly. Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney took down the 2000 lb Frank Rizzo statue. 

In a huge win for Philadelphia progressive activists, Nikil Saval defeated Democratic Party establishment-backed candidate Larry Farnese in the primary for Pennsylvania’s First Senate District. Nikil Saval is the cofounder of Reclaim Philadelphia, a community activist, a DSA member, and an editor for N+1. Saval ran a campaign right out of the Bernie Sanders campaign platform and is now looking at a double-digit win of Farnese who has held the seat since 2009. 

Bernie Sanders pulled in 20% of the vote in Pennsylvania. 

But Nikil Saval was not the only big news. It looks like six other incumbents were shown their walking papers in Tuesday’s Primaries.

  • Daylin Leach is behind by nearly twenty points to Amanda Cappelletti, a candidate endorsed by Elizabeth Warren.
  • Summer Lee crushes her primary opponent Chris Roland by a 75-25 margin.  It looks like the building trades owes Summer an apology for wasting over a hundred thousand dollars to run someone against her out of spite.
  • Progressive Emily Kinkead looks like she is going to oust conservative Democrat Adam Ravenstahl in House District 20 in the Pittsburgh area. Ravenstahl has frequently voted with conservative Republicans, especially when it comes to restricting women’s access to abortion and necessary medical care.
  • Rick Krajewski, a West Philadelphia organizer, is narrowly ahead of Jim Roebuck in PA House District 188. Roebuck has held the seat since 1985. Krajewski was backed by Bernie Sanders, the PA Chapter of the National Organization for Women, National DSA, Sunrise Philadelphia, and the AFT Local 2026 among a long list of endorsers. 

And as of today, all counties in Pennsylvania have moved into either the Green Phase or the Yellow Phase. Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Lackawanna, Lancaster, Lehigh, Northampton, Montgomery, and Philadelphia Counties were the last counties to remain in the Red Phase. They move to Yellow today. 

Whitey’s on the Moon...OK, not the Moon, but the International Space Station. SpaceX and NASA successfully launched two astronauts to the ISS from Florida’s Kennedy Space Center last Saturday. It was the first crewed launch from U.S. soil since the Obama administration scrapped the Space Shuttle program in 2009. The fact the launch took place during some of the biggest civil rights uprisings in nearly a century has us relistening to some Gil Scott-Heron

Looks like the whole 2024 Moon settlement plan hit a bit of a setback as SpaceX’s Starship Prototype exploded during a static-fire test of the massive rocket’s engines. 

The Menzingers just released a new song, America Pt. 2. All proceeds from the song go to community bail funds. You can listen to and buy the song at bandcamp.com

And, while we’re at it, Bob Mould just released a new song called “American Crisis.” It show that the anger from Gen X runs deep. Thanks to my friend Stu Ross for sending me that. 

Free Will Brewing is opening up outdoor seating at their main Perkasie location and at Peddler’s Village tomorrow, Saturday, June 6. They had to push back today’s opening due to storms and flood warnings. They are turning a field next to the brewery into a beer garden with a pop-up bar, bathrooms, and sanitizing stations, in addition to our usual front yard space and courtyard. 

Free Will also has a new release for the first time in a while. This one is a collab with Imprint Beer Company. It’s the Strawberry Lemonade Radfahrer - They took their Cream Ale base and mixed it with some slightly tart lemonade before a hefty addition of strawberry purée to top the whole thing off. 3.9% ABV⁣⁣.


May 2020

Out d’Coup | Minneapolis Burns; Police Murder George Floyd; Trump Incites; 100K U.S. Dead; Jamaal Bowman Challenge; Brian Sims; PA GOP COVID Cover-Up; Space Force; SpaceX Delayed; Free Will Reviews

Minneapolis burns, including a police station, as the demands for justice in the police murder of an unarmed black man, George Floyd. Four white police officers involved in the murder have been fired, but the video of one officer with his knee on Floyd’s neck for several minutes while he cried out “I can’t breathe” have the community calling for more widespread justice. Protests have started to spread across the nation as well. 

Trump took to Twitter to help insight violence against Minneapolis protesters calling them “THUGS,” suggesting that the military should be brought in to suppress the protests, and threatening “when the looting starts, the shooting starts.” 

And it’s official. More than 100,000 Americans are dead from COVID-19. That horrific milestone was reached as states are planning on or have already opened up. Yet, as the Washington Post reported this week, rural areas are increasingly becoming the areas hit hardest by the coronavirus. And while those states hit hard by COVID-19 early in the outbreak are beginning to flatten their curves, the rest of the country’s numbers are continuing to skyrocket up. 

Over Memorial Day weekend, the Lake of the Ozarks in Missouri was the place to be, apparently. Thousands of people flooded pool parties and resorts in violation of the state’s and county’s COVID-19 restrictions. The Governor of St. Louis County had to issue a travel advisory after videos of the parties went viral urging “those who ignored protective practices to self-quarantine for 14 days or until testing negative for COVID-19.” What are the chances of that, do you think? 

After aggressive efforts to combat the spread of the coronavirus, South Korea made the decision to reopen its schools. Now more than 500 schools have had to shut their doors again after spikes in new cases. 

New York Rep. Eliot Engle, the hawkish Democrat who chairs the House Foreign Affairs Committee and who has ties to defense contractors, may just lose a primary challenge to Jamaal Bowman, a progressive champion for the district representing parts of the Brox and Westchester. 

PA Republican leaders in the House were exposed for a COVID-19 cover-up in the Capitol.  House Representative Andy Lewis came down with the virus and tested positive on May 14th.  When he told leadership that he tested positive, leadership only told other Republicans to quarantine.  Who cares if the House Democrats get sick.  

PA State Representative Brian Sims, unloads on Republican State House leadership after learning that House Majority Leader, Mike Turzai and other members of the House Republican leadership covered-up the fact that several Republican members had tested positive for COVID-19. Rep. Russ Diamond, who has been the biggest loudmouth about how everything is safe and that that Governor Wolf is a tyrant, was one of the Republicans who tested positive for COVID-19.

The COVID coverup didn’t stop House Republicans from voting on Russ Diamond’s resolution to suspend Governor Tom Wolf’s emergency declaration. Oh, 8 Democrats voted for Russ Diamond’s bill to open up PA. This is AFTER the news broke of the PA GOP COVID-19 cover-up.

Bernie Sanders endorses Daylin Leach’s Primary challenger Amanda Capaletti & endorsed Nikil Saval who is the editor of N+1 and running against Larry Farnese.  

In another chapter of “you just don’t get it, do you,” Pennsylvania’s department of education is working with the Data Recognition Corporation to find ways of getting parents to give their kids standardized tests in the event that schools remained closed in the fall due to the pandemic. I don’t know about you, but I was really disappointed when my kids’ PSSA’s and other standardized tests were canceled this year. The good news is that Pennsylvania is not the only state attempting to push high-stakes testing into students’ homes. 

Oh, and who’s Matt Brouillette again?

Netflix’s Space Force starring Steve Carell premiers TODAY! 

Wednesday’s attempt by SpaceX and NASA to launch astronauts to the International Space Station from U.S. soil for the first time in almost 10 years had to be postponed due to weather. The new launch date is set for tomorrow, Saturday, May 30 @ 3:22 pm.

Sean bought a desk fan. Big news. He needed it after going down the YouTube rabbit hole on Nicholas Cage.

If you’re looking for some excellent sci-fi pandemic reading, check out Station Eleven, by Emily St. John Mandel

I’ll report back on some of the new offerings at Free Will’s online store. I’ve had a chance to check out Haymaker Meadery’s Dandy - Sparkling Mead with Plum and Jasmine Green Tea - 6.5% ABV. And I also picked up a 4-pack of Relax and Chill, a hazy IPA Hazy Pale Ale Brewed with oats and hopped with Simcoe, Calypso, and Centennial- 5.5% ABV. You can check out all their stuff to pick up or get delivered at https://freewillbrewing.store/.

May 2020

Out d’Coup Interview | Brian Bailie on Higher Ed Cuts, COVID-19 Disaster Capitalism, and Organizing for the Fightback | May 27, 2020

It’s Wednesday, May 27, 2020. Welcome to Raging Chicken’s Out d’Coup podcast. This is Kevin Mahoney, editor, and founder of Raging Chicken Press. On today’s show, we’ve got a Raging Chicken interview with Brian Bailie. Bailie is an Assistant Professor of rhetoric and composition at the University of Cincinnati’s Blue Ash College. He’s got some new articles that hitting the interwebs in the weeks ahead: “Are We an Academic Journal? Editing as Ethical Practice for Change,” in Reflections: A Journal of Community Engaged Writing and Rhetoric. That’s authored with Steve Parks and the article, “So, Richard Spencer is Coming to Your Campus. How He was Allowed on, and How You Can Confront Him,” due out soon in Present Tense: A Journal of Rhetoric in Society. I wanted to talk to Brian today about the ways COVID-19 is giving cover for the wholesale destruction of public higher education. 

What’s happening at Ohio University? Since the beginning of the month, OU has eliminated the jobs of at least 340 people coupled with the retirement of another 88. 74 of those retiring are faculty members. The cuts have included layoffs of 53 instructional faculty and the elimination of 149 administrative positions. Most recently, OU announced cuts to 40% of the faculty at their regional campuses. All these cuts have been done with the cover of the COVID-19 pandemic. It’s like Margaret Thatcher has returned from the dead to remind us “there’s nothing we can do.” Is this just a force of nature or are we seeing disaster capitalism on steroids?

At the University of Cincinnati, we see similar patterns of cut, gut, and punish with one significant difference. While faculty members are discouraged from using the copier for class handouts in the name of saving money, the university has been on a spending spree when it comes to NCAA Division I athletics. According to an excellent investigative report by UC’s student newspaper, The News Record, records show that while UC had an athletic deficit of $5.6 million in 2005, in 2019 that deficit increased five-fold to $29.7 million. What’s that meant for faculty teaching on the University of Cincinnati’s campuses? We’ll ask Brian about that. 

UC’s budgeting schemes will sound like they come from the same playbook that we see right here in PA’s State System of Higher Education. Maybe because it is. 

And in a time when the most vulnerable are the most at risk, Ohio’s labor laws are double jeopardy for adjunct faculty. 

Bailie highlights the fightback coming from AAUP:UC and discusses how important it is to have collective bargaining rights and an active union. He also clues us in on an awesome student organizing effort at UC called Boldly Bankrupt

And on today’s last call, we’ll look for temporary diversions from COVID-19 and the disaster capitalists to see if we can get Brian to give us some beer recommendations from his neck of the woods. I’m wearing a Rheingeist Brewing hat in his honor! Here’s some of Bailie’s recs:

We close out looking at signs of hope and resistance.

May 2020

Out d’Coup | Michigan Floods; Climate and COVID-19; Fruit Worker Strikes; QAnon 4 OR Senate; Public Higher Ed; ReOpenPA; Daryl Metcalfe; Wolf Vetoes; NASA Shake-Up; Net Trail; Free Will and Friends

Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer declared a state of emergency this week as two dams collapsed following days of exceptionally heavy rain. Thousands of residents had to be evacuated and the floodwaters were comingling with containment ponds at a Dow Chemical plant near the town of Midland. Parts of Midland and other areas were under 5 feet of water. The company that owned the dams - Boyce Hydro - was chronically noncompliant with the State’s demands to maintain and update the dam.

On the other side of planet, Super Cyclone Amphan devastated parts of India and Bangladesh. The storm was the strongest cyclone ever recorded in the Bay of Bengal with sustained winds of 165 mph. The Indian city of Kolkata was devastated, killing at least 84 people as of last night. 

At least six fruit packing worksites are on strike in Yakima County, WA. The county has the highest rate of COVID-19 cases on the West Coast and workers are striking over safer working conditions and an additional $2/hour in hazard pay. As we’ve seen in the meatpacking industries, immigrant workers work at high-speed, shoulder-to-shoulder in less than adequate working conditions. The companies have not addressed testing issues or safety conditions. 

Oregon Republicans nominate Jo Rae Perkins as their candidate for U.S. Senate. Perkins is a QAnon conspiracy theorist. In her primary victory speech Tuesday night, Perkins said: ““We’re in this together. It’s all for one, so let’s make it happen. As all of us Q people like to say: ‘Where we go one, we go all.” Perkins beat her closest opponent by more than 50,000 votes. She’ll face Democratic Senator Jeff Merkley in November. 

In a video posted to Twitter earlier Tuesday, Perkins looks into the camera and says: “I stand with President Trump. I stand with Q and the team. Thank you Anons and thank you patriots, and together we can save our Republic.” That tweet is now removed. 

Georgia Republicans cancel election for the state Supreme Court. Now, Republican Governor Brian Kemp gets to take his pick of right-wing justices to fill the seat. 

The VP guessing game has begun! We’re glad cable news will have something to obsess over and give them a little break from having to cover the impact of COVID-19 and our decimated public infrastructure. 

Cambridge University won’t return to face-to-face lectures until summer 2021. On the flip side, NYU is all gung ho about getting back on campus this fall. 

With COVID-19 as cover, Kean University will eliminate majors in music, sustainability sciences, theater, and economics. Ohio University announces it will cut 53 faculty, 94 administrators, and about 140 AFSCME workers. 

And Trump says he’s taking hydroxychloroquine. Who knows if that’s even true. 

Sean took some pictures last week. ReOpenPA was reenacting Sweeney Tood outside the Capitol. 

Daryl Metcalfe was pretty busy this week.  First he continued his storied tradition of introducing impeachment resolutions against any Democratic official he hates.  This time it’s Governor Wolf.  And he is promising to hold his yearly gun rally on the capitol steps on June 8th with or without Wolf’s permission.  This year’s theme is to Stand Your Ground Against Socialism.  

Governor Wolf vetos a bill that would have stopped any new regulations in PA until after his COVID-19 disaster emergency declaration expires. The bill was proposed by Republican State Senator David Argall seemed designed to stop any environmental regulations impacting the oil and gas companies and other corporations. 

Some good news coming out of Harrisburg!  Republicans living in competitive districts are warming up to the idea of legalizing marijuana in the Commonwealth due to the impending budget shortfall. 

Kutztown Univerisity is plowing ahead with plans to return in the fall. As details of the plan begin to leak, it’s that much more important to pay attention. Wait until you hear one of the administration’s student housing plans. We’ll get to that in a little detail. A faculty union task force is developing an alternative plan that would take students, faculty, and staff’s health and safety into account. Imagine that.  

In the best space news of the week, someone at the National Museum, of the U.S. Airforce at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, taped a picture of Steve Carell over the official picture of Chief of Space Operations Gen. John Raymond. The trickster also replaced Raymond’s bio with that of Gen. Mark R. Naird, Carell’s character in Netflix’s new series “Space Force,” which premieres May 29th. 

A little over a week before Space X is scheduled to launch two NASA astronauts from U.S. soil for the first time since the Obama administration scuttled the Space Shuttle program in 2011, the head of human space flight at NASA, Douglas Loverro, abruptly resigned. According to reporting in the Washington Post, apparently the resignation came after Loverro broke a rule in the process of awarding contracts to Blue Origin, Space X, and Dynetics to get humans back to the moon. 

New Trail Brewing is opening a larger brewing space in Williamsport. 

Don’t forget you can order your Free Will Brewing faves at their online store @ https://freewillbrewing.store/. They now have four selections from Perkasie’s growing craft culture Haymaker Meadery.

May 2020

Out d’Coup Live | Episode 0.0 - we test launch our live call in show!

Welcome to the first-ever Out d'Coup Live Call-In Show. We did a full-length test run of our new live call-in show! Call it a soft-launch. On today's show we gave a little background about Raging Chicken and talked shock doctrine for public higher education in the age of COVID-19. 

The full video version of today's show will be available exclusively to patrons at patreon.com/RCPress until Monday. On Monday we'll make the video live stream public for everyone at patreon.com/RCPress

Help support pull-no-punches progressive media today. Become a patron of Raging Chicken for as little as $5/month. You can become a patron today at patreon.com/RCPress

May 2020

Out d’Coup | Elections Have Consequences - WI Edition; Fauci Speaks; Axing Higher Ed; Shanna Danielson in PA31; Make the Road Greets Trump; ReOpen PA Rally; Space News; Free Will Brewing

In the never-ending evidence that elections have consequences, Wednesday evening the right-wing dominated Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled Governor Tony Evers’s stay-at-home order unconstitutional. Following the ruling, the Tavern League of Wisconsin told all its members to open their pubs asap. Soon social media was filled with pictures of packed bars with zero social distancing. The grand experiment has begun. Governor Evers could only say, “We’re in the Wild West now.” 

 Dr. Anthony Fauci - one of the few trusted voices on the White House’s coronavirus task force, testified remotely before the Senate this week. Fauci told Senators that a spike in deaths should be expected if states begin to reopen without the proper protocols and protections in place.  

Public higher education is on the chopping block across the U.S. as disaster capitalist politicians use the cover of the COVID-19 pandemic to institute mass layoffs and budget cuts. The deepest cuts so far may be those at Missouri Western State University, which may make it easier for other state university systems to do the same. 

Shanna Danielson, who is running for State Senate in the 31st district, got a big endorsement this week from Auditor General Eugene DePasquale. In his endorsement, DePasquale “Shanna is smart, hard-working and brings the highest level of integrity. She will be a state senator we can depend on to lead, for our families and our community.” Danielson is taking on corporate shill, Mike Regan, and is running strong on her support for working families and a state government that focuses on people first. 

Pennsylvania is not immune from the deep cuts in higher education. Local faculty union presidents at Kutztown University and Cheyney University were notified that their administrations are considering eliminating adjunct, tenure-track, and tenured faculty. Of course, Raging Chicken has been covering PASSHE’s deceptive budget and accounting practices for years. As the state budget battles prepare to heat up, it does not look so good for Pennsylvania’s 14 state-owned universities. 

Trump visited a medical equipment supplier in the Lehigh Valley on Thursday. His landing at the Lehigh Valley International Airport was greeted with a huge caravan of cars protesting Trump’s visit. The action was organized by Make the Road. One of the signs from the caravan summed up the message: “Trump Failed 3,943 Pennsylvanians dead from COVID.” Of course, there were also dozens of Trumpistas lining Industrial Boulevard in Upper Macungie Township. Most were not wearing masks. 

And, of course, today is the big ReOpen PA rally in Harrisburg, underway as I record this. Early images look like every other Trump rally. My favorite sign so far is “Fear is a Liar.” 

A 24-year-old man in Perkasie, PA - yes, my neck of the woods - punched a female store clerk in the face several times after she insisted he wears a mask in the store. 

NASA researchers have identified a string of lava tubes in the Hellas Planitia area of Mars that may prove promising for a future Martian base. Lava tubes would help protect astronauts from the relentless solar radiation. 

One of the largest pieces of space junk landed back on Earth on Monday. The 18-ton empty core stage from a Chinese rocket launched on May 5, passed directly over Los Angeles and Central Park in NYC before landing in the Atlantic Ocean. 

Free Will Brewing rolled out its new online store and began to ship to all PA addresses. Sun Servants - that tasty Helles Lager - is back in stock and ready for shipping. I’ll have a report back on their Sweet Cherry Vanilla Mash. You can check out their story at FreeWillBrewing.store. You can order online and pick up at the main brewery in Perkasie, or have them ship it to you. Get together with some friends and order $125 or more and you’ll get free shipping too.

May 2020

Out d’Coup | Ahmaud Arbery; Barr Wants Flynn Free; DeVos Releases New Sexual Assault Rules; Supreme Court Sides with Gov. Wolf; NASA Space Move; Space Force on Netflix; Free Will News

Even the coronavirus can’t stop the deep-seated violent racism in the U.S. A white father and son in Georgia hunt down and kill Ahmaud Arbery, an African-American man who was suspected of jogging in a park. It was only video evidence that moved the case forward.

The Justice Dept. drops charges against Michael Flynn. The lead prosecutor for the case then quits. 

Besty DeVos gets her way and finally releases new sexual assault rules calling for open hearings and more protections for the accused. The new rules are a serious blow to decades of work to systemically address sexual violence on college campuses. 

In an effort to stay relevant, Adam Schiff releases the transcripts for the House Intelligent Committee’s closed-door interviews of the Russian investigation. 

Supreme Court tells Danny DeVito, no, Gov. Wolf is not a demon dictator. The state-at-home order is perfectly Constitutional. 

Gov. Wolf starts the process of opening up...very slowly. 

NASA is working with Tom Cruise to shoot a movie in outer space. Like, for real. 

Free Will has a new release: Sweet Cherry Vanilla Mash

Free Will is now shipping to all PA locations. Order for pick up or delivery right here: https://freewillbrewing.store/

May 2020

Out d’Coup | May Day Strikes at Amazon; Meatpacking and Food Supply Fails; More Idiots Call for Opening ‘Merica; Chris Hayes; Biden Speaks; Space Force; Blue Origin to the Moon; Free Will Sours

It’s May Day and workers are Amazon, Whole Foods, Instacart, Walmart, FedEx, Target, and Ship are walking off the job. They are protesting the failure of the companies to provide basic protections for front-line workers while raking in record profits. One of the lead organizers for the walkout is Chris Smalls who is quickly gaining status a new brand of militant labor organizers. In early April, Vice News obtained an internal memo from Amazon leadership describing a campaign to smear Smalls. 

Major coronavirus outbreaks in meatpacking plants around the country coupled with the dumping of thousands of tons of food, draw new attention to our broken food system and raises questions of the possibility of food shortages down the road. 

Mike Pence decides to ditch his mask when visiting the Mayo Clinic on Tuesday. 

More right-wing radicals showed up yesterday fully armed to the Michigan Capitol once again demanding an end to the shutdowns. On Thursday night, the Republican-dominated legislature refused to extend the state’s emergency declaration which was set to expire at midnight. Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer issued new orders stating the emergency still exists. 

#FireChrisHayes trends on Twitter after Hayes decides to break from the rest of the network and actually cover Tara Reade’s accusations against Joe Biden like an actual journalist. In a world where #Resistance and Democratic Party leadership’s only campaign slogan is Trump-bad-man, they went after Hayes as if he signed a blood pact with Steve Bannon.

When about the accusations at a press conference, Nancy Pelosi told the reporter that she didn’t need a lecture and she supports Joe Biden, dismissing Tara Reade’s accusations and diminishing the #MeToo movement.

Biden took to Morning Joe this morning and in the face of direct questioning by Mika Brzezinski denies all of Reade’s accusations. 

State Rep Daryl Metcalfe calls for the repeal of environmental regulations because coronavirus. 

PA planning on relaxing COVID-19 restrictions later today. Which counties will be the first to rejoin the spreader communities. All this happening, of course, and the crisis in the state’s nursing homes continues. 

Pennsylvania Republicans signed a letter Attorney General Barr to sue the Wolf administration. 

NASA picks Jeff Bezo’s Blue Origin National Team for the Artemis program’s plan to bring humans back to the Moon. 

The application window for the Space Force opens today. But hold on there, future space cadets, this initial round will only be open for U.S. Air Force members who might want to transfer to the new branch of the military. More than 7,000 airmen, airwomen, and officers will be asked to transfer. 

And, don’t forget, Netflix will release Space Force on May 29th! The series created by Greg Daniels and stars Steve Carrell.

We don’t have any Free Will Brewing new releases this week, but they do have more than 15 different bottles of barrel-aged sours just waiting for a good home. If you want a few recommendations to get you started, I’d go with The Pomisher, a barrel-aged sour with pomegranates; Kriek Noveau, a barrel and foudre aged sour ale with cherries; and, Fenberry Sauce, a barrel-aged sour ale with cranberries.

Apr 2020

Out d’Coup | GOP Death Cult Foot Soldiers in H’burg; Bailouts; Higher Ed Cuts; Planet of Humans; Pelosi’s Ice Cream; Fox News Spreaders; Hubble’s 30th; Free Will Releases

The foot soldiers of the GOP death cult were out in force in Harrisburg and other cities across the country this week. Sean was on the ground with the pro-virus spreader troops. It wasn’t pretty.  

Remember those billions of dollars in last week’s round of bailouts that was supposed to keep mom-and-pop small businesses afloat? Well, according to new research from Morgan Stanley, about $243.4 million dollars of that money went to quite a few publicly traded companies, several that have market values in excess of $100 million.  

The money for that small business bailout program - known as the Paycheck Protection Program - ran out of money last Thursday. On Tuesday night of this week, the Senate passed a new $484 billion relief package. Dems got squat. 

Several states are looking to slash funding to public higher education in order to pay for skyrocketing unemployment rolls and falling tax revenue from the shutdown. 

The right-wing Heritage Foundation released a  “National Coronavirus Recovery Commission” report that calls for the elimination of public schools and the removal of teacher certification requirements along with its traditional right-wing wish list. It’s a shock doctrine play, taking the blueprint from Hurricane Katrina national. 

Good thing the White House has the real experts working on its pandemic task force. Reuters just broke the news that back in January Alex Azar - the corporate shill posing as the secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services - appointed one such expert to head the task force: Brian Harrison. Harrison’s years of expertise were in breeding Labradoodles. 

Elizabeth Warren’s oldest brother, Don Reed, died from COVID-19 on Tuesday evening. 

Michael Moore releases a new film by his long time friend and collaborator Jeff Gibbs on his YouTube page for free. The film, The Planet of the Humans, is a scathing documentary about the collaboration between Big Green organizations and Woke Capitalism to dupe us all. I watched it last night with the help of my friends at Free Will. It was a doozy. 

Nancy Pelosi goes on the Late, Late Show with James Cordon and shows the world her chocolate, ice cream, and pair of $20,000 refrigerators. 

Coming off her chocolate high, Pelosi bypasses Katie Porter to oversee the stimulus funds in favor of her old friends Donna Shalala. After all, Shalala has Rachel Platten’s “Fight Song” on her phone./ 

A new study shows that Sean Hannity’s show helps spread the coronavirus. Thanks Fox. 

Happy 30th Birthday, Hubble telescope. There’s a new Science Channel documentary released last Sunday called, "Hubble: Thirty Years of Discovery."

The first spotted lanternfly was spotted in PA. Time to get stomping. 

Free Will has Mango Wheat back in stock. You can get that and more at Free Will’s online store.

Apr 2020

Out d’Coup | Biden Endorsements; RIght-Wing Death Cults Protest; COVID-19 Crisis in Nursing Homes; State GOP Tries to Re-Open PA as Part of Tea Party 2.0; Apollo 13; Free Will Brewing Online Store

Bernie endorses Biden. Then Warren endorses Biden. 

Over 22 million Americans have now filed for unemployment. 

The United States has more cases than the next four countries with the largest outbreaks. 

Rabid right-wing death cult enthusiasts protest stay at home orders and other restrictions on their individual ‘Merican freedom. Notable Protests took place in Michigan, Ohio, New York, and North Carolina featuring - you guessed it - “Don’t Tread on Me” banners, Confederate flags, guns, and Fox News talking points. They want to get back to work and embrace whatever the virus may bring. Not only does this show the anti-human tendency at the base of the Republican base, but it also shows the bankruptcy of right-wing ideology and the shock doctrine. In the wake of more than 30,000 deaths and staggering unemployment rates, some people think that their only choice is to risk their lives to get back to their crappy jobs. More protests are planned for Texas, Oregon, and California. I sure as hell someone will be tracking these clusters of pro-pandemic tools. 

According to a new Quinnipiac poll, 85% of Americans are either very concerned or somewhat concerned that they or someone they know will get the coronavirus - up 31% from March. A Pew Research poll found that 73% of Americans think the worst impacts from the coronavirus are yet to come. In the same poll, 66% worry that the government will lift restrictions too soon, worsening the outbreak. 

On Thursday, the PA Dept. of Health reported that the Commonwealth had 1,245 new coronavirus cases, bringing the total to 27,735. At least 707 people have died as a direct result of the coronavirus. 

About half of PA deaths have occurred in nursing homes, which is causing alarm across the state. 

All residents at the Montgomery County-based nursing home, Phoebe Wyncote had to be evacuated to a facility in Lehigh County because so many of the staff tested positive for the virus. As of Wednesday, 77 nursing home residents have died. That’s 64% of all deaths in MontCo. 

306 long-term care facilities have confirmed coronavirus cases. At least 3,290 residents and at least 394 employees have been infected. At least 365 long-term care deaths have been reported. 

The PA GOP continues to be committed to the crazy train. Gov. Wolf yesterday announced plans to veto a bill passed by the Republican legislature that would have businesses open sooner than Wolf’s April 30 date. 

On Monday protesters from “Reopen Pennsylvania” will be doubling down on the PA GOP’s and Trump’s rhetoric on reopening the economy.  This astroturfed movement has connections to Betsy DeVos funded organizations in Michigan. 

And good news for anti-planet industries. Shell says that it will bring back 500 workers at the Beaver County cracker plant next week to continue construction. Beaver County has seen recent spikes in coronavirus cases. 

This week, NASA is celebrating the 50th anniversary of Apollo 13’s “successful failure.” Apollo 13 launched on April 11, 1970, in an attempt to bring a third crew of U.S. astronauts to the moon. However, just three days into the mission, an explosion vented much the ship’s oxygen supply into space. The crew carried out a harrowing emergency return to Earth in one of the most dramatic stories of the early space race. Given the coronavirus shutdowns, NASA has released a documentary called Apollo 13: Home Safe, available free online. 

Garcia’s Forest is back at Free Will Brewing and is available for pick up in their online store!⁣ ⁣Garcia’s Forest is a Hazy IPA brewed with flaked oats and wheat, hopped with Citra, Mosaic, and Chinook. No milk sugar in this one. A bit of a cross between new age hazy IPA’s and classic west coast renditions, this one’s full on body and flavor with notes of dank grapefruit, tangelo, white peach, and honeydew melon. 7.1% ABV

Kurant Cider Mimosa - Dry Bubbly Cider with Orange, is also now available in their online store!⁣ This is the first time they’ve offered this one out of the taproom, joining the Kurant line up with Bees and Earth.⁣ Free Will is open for ta