Hurricane Watcher - #HospitalCollapseKills Profile picture
I wear my mask because I care about you. #CovidIsAirborne NZ USA #EndFascism #CountryOverParty💜🌊 #XGOP #NeverTrump #Ahoy🚢 af Policy/PR analyst. Matt 10:14
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19 Sep
Time for a quick thread about the meaning behind every little part of my current Twitter profile that communicates a value that is important to me.

#CovidIsAirborne
#CountryOverParty
#EndFascism

🇳🇿🇺🇸
In around April 2020 I changed my username from @GodlessNZ to @FreedomFriesInc.

This account was originally set up to participate in secularism discussions. From Feb 2016 it morphed into 95% US politics. A topic I love to follow.
#FreedomFries pops up in the news from time to time and is still largely misunderstood in the US.

In 2003 it was a joke "trend" or "meme" among those who supported the US-led coalition to topple Saddam Hussein in Iraq.

I supported it and still do.
Read 24 tweets
18 Sep
Thread: The substance of what Clarence Thomas is doing here is an abuse of his power that aims to further undermine public confidence in institutions, especially in the free press as an institution.

He knows exactly what he's doing. And it is toxic to democracy.
How dare Clarence Thomas try to attack the free press as an institution.

This is an active attempt at suppressing a free press and free speech that criticize his decisions.

Absolutely vital for the public to debate SCOTUS decisions whenever we we want to.
Thomas pretends to just be woefully out of touch with life outside his elitist bubble but he knows exactly what he's doing.

The far right fascist part of America that made him their favorite SCOTUS judge after Scalia died, have damaged public trust in institutions the most.
Read 13 tweets
9 Sep
Thread: I'm prolife and I agree with every word the VP says in this clip.

She refers to the law as it stands. If you want to make elective abortion illegal, you can seek a constitutional amendment. What TX did was wrong, including for the prolife movement itself.
Firstly, I love that a female VP is in office and can say these things at this time. Thank you to everyone who voted for Biden-Harris. You saved so many lives, and ensured the USA could start the long process of restoring democracy.
The abortion debate comes down to whether you support a woman's right to bodily autonomy, or the baby's right to same (incl 50% who are female.) I want to support both, but I can't. The issue forces us to choose the lesser of two evils. Like most of the big political issues do.
Read 12 tweets
3 Sep
These 5 WaPo headlines are an insight into the state of play in the US and the world right now. I discuss them below.

Summary: Our opponents are far right fascism AND our own complacency.
We're now seeing at least daily stories like that of the school principal physically confronted and threatened by a far right fascist MAGA cult parent just for doing his job.

These people are dangerous. They are domestic terrorists and we must use situational awareness 24/7.
I advise reviewing all your personal safety and security arrangements with this in mind.

It's too late once an assailant is in front of you and able to do harm in a matter of seconds.

Also, always, #SeeSomethingSaySomething. @DHSgov has good readiness tips.
Read 16 tweets
3 Sep
(1) 18hrs ago 6 innocents were seriously injured when an ISIS sympathizer stabbed them in a NZ supermarket. Police took out the terrorist. They were meant to watch him 24/7... the PM doesn't think they did anything wrong & won't say how many others are on a watchlist.

#nzpol
(2) I'm not criticizing the heroic rank and file NZ Police members who shot the terrorist, saving dozens of lives.

I'm criticizing their incapable Commissioner who cares more about making excuses for himself, and PM Jacinda Ardern who doesn't see her approach is the wrong one.
(3) What Ardern and the people she allows to be in charge of our public service agencies will never admit is that their actions are worsening the extremely challenging situation NZ is already in, with the pandemic especially.
Read 6 tweets
3 Sep
(1) Thread: Another terrorist attack in NZ

This happened just a few hours ago at 2.40pm. It's 7pm now.

(2) The only fatality was the attacker, who was shot by police, after injuring 6 people. He was:

>known to police and the courts as an ISIS supporter
>a Sri Lankan national who arrived in NZ in 2011
>on a watchlist since 2016

🧐
(3) I've said for years a jihadist attack was inevitable one day in NZ. Relieved no innocents died but the 6 injured are forever changed.

The first NZ terrorist attack in my lifetime was the far right fascist targeting of two mosques on March 15, 2019.

51 people killed.
Read 14 tweets
2 Sep
A bit of thread. About unitary vs federal government models during an emergency like a pandemic.

I focus the most on 5 countries, the main Anglosphere:

UK, US, CAN, AU and NZ.

Only NZ has a unitary system. Now, we are small but:
A major weakness in the federal model is exposed by how these countries have fared so far in the pandemic.

The federal model has some important strengths, and is necessary in a massive country like the US.

I'm saying there are more than two options. They're infinite.
In NZ and AFAIK elsewhere, health agencies are leading the response and not civil defence / emergency management agencies.

This is a huge mistake.

And it ties in with the federal vs unitary debate, too.
Read 16 tweets
1 Sep
Please, Twitter, hire me to edit your draft headlines so you stop embarrassing yourselves concerning hurricanes.

It's not "another" storm. It's the same storm #Ida, after it's been a hurricane but is still a hazard until it is well clear of land.

#HWStormWatch #WxTwitter
There's 3 problems with Twitter's headline.

1. It's absent of punctuation. They use it in other headlines.

2. This causes confusion bc many people don't know how a post-TC is named.

3. Maybe it was deliberate, to generate clicks.
Imma assume it was an innocent mistake on the part of Twitter. Occam's Razor.

If it was deliberate, then it's one of many examples I've seen over the years where potentially saving lives is less important to them than Twitter marketing.
Read 10 tweets
23 Aug
I've always supported school choice initiatives on their merits, which can be substantial. But my ideal world would be one in which everyone chose to wear a mask where doing so supported the physical and mental health of others around them during a pandemic such as this.
Parents do not have total rights over the health choices for their children, even in the USA.

Making a school "mask optional" at this time would mean it is pointless for any child to wear one. They reduce the droplet spread from a Covid carrier to everyone else in the room.
A child's health status is not protected by that child wearing a mask. It is protected by OTHER children wearing a mask.

Any genuine concern about the breathing of the mask wearer can be dealt with separately. The issue is simple: Mask wearing slows the spread of Covid.
Read 20 tweets
23 Aug
Campos-Duffy (wife of GQP ex Rep Sean Duffy) is parroting a line of MAGA cult brainwashing that Pres Biden is mentally unfit & Dr Biden pushed him to run for office.

None of which is true. Joe Biden can deal with live press briefings better than TFG.

Also, he trolls better.😎
MAGAs really believe Biden is cognitively impaired. I used to believe this, too. I am ALWAYS open to changing my mind if presented with new evidence, & that's what happened after election day.

Biden had to run a near-virtual campaign bc he didn't want folk to die from events.
The need to #MaskUp #GetVaccinated and at times avoid large gatherings, to save lives, is not something that stops Donald Trump from doing unconscionable things like holding a rally in Alabama when there are NO spare ICU beds in the entire state.

Biden is not Trump. Thank GOD.
Read 13 tweets
21 Aug
"HW is now a despicable, vile leftist." As much as I laugh at these unironic Ls, it shows the kind of irrational rage that Trump cult victims are ready to direct at anyone who gets in their way.

I'm a #NeverTrump conservative, not a leftist. No one is allowed to leave the cult. Image
I want to thank everyone who is #NeverTrump for extending the hand of friendship (or at least civility) to those of us who are prepared to change our mind.

New info comes to light all the time, eg the carnage he created in Afghanistan and other countries in that region.
I'm referring to this first hand testimony about what Trump did and didn't do in the FOUR years he had, from someone who was literally in the room throughout much of it.

A must-read 8-tweet thread:

Read 38 tweets
18 Aug
(1) Covid in NZ update thread 2 for 18 August 2021.

This godforsaken government decided our frontline police officers weren't a priority for vaccination.

Just 4,000 of 10,000 have been vaxxed so far. And they are sent out to deal with the public wearing a mask & no other PPE.
(2) This is the kind of callous stupidity that brings down governments.

I think the oppo parties should prepare themselves to hold a vote of no confidence if they can get the chance.

Good thing we have the Westminster system, allowing us to do that.
(3) It's evening on Day 2 of NZ's Delta variant response.

In just the first 10 minutes of nightly news from the state owned broadcaster TVNZ, we could see that most of the public are sufficiently aware of the danger. That is heartening.
Read 20 tweets
18 Aug
(1) This 3 minute clip is well worth a listen.

@JulianCastro is asked why would Republicans like Abbott take such an unpopular stance against protecting kids from Covid.

Because Abbott has 2 primary challengers even further to the right than he is.
(2) "Normal people" like you and me would never put our own career or even our income level ahead of basic things like allowing a school to do everything it can do save lives.

But we're not GOP politicians.
(3) The GOP enabled & supported Trump's rise to power, incl. the fatal (for other people) decisions he made at the start of the pandemic & continues with to this day.

His hold over voters drives these bitter primary battles that see pols behaving as if they've lost their minds.
Read 6 tweets
18 Aug
(1) Thread: Latest updates on the Covid situation in New Zealand, 18 August 2021.

The PM's daily briefing will start soon.

Link to coverage: nzherald.co.nz/nz/covid-19-co…
(2) IMO the NZ government has not done enough to prepare for this emergency and crucially, they are deliberately downplaying the role of vaccination in saving lives. More on that issue below.

We all knew yesterday there'd be more than 1 case. About 5 identified so far:
(3) I've said on Twitter since the start that NZ wasn't getting jabs in arms fast enough. Absolutely it was possible to get to a higher vax rate than we have today.

And they are still missing the point about which age groups are now at greatest risk.
Read 20 tweets
16 Aug
(1) Late August 2021 #HWStormWatch🌀 thread.

8/16/21:

#TSFred is about to make landfall in the NE Gulf.

#TSGrace is poised to assault the people of Western Haiti just one day after their M7.2 earthquake.

(2) Fortunately #TSGrace is not predicted to landfall in any of the Southern US states that already have #HospitalSystemCollapse from the fourth and so far worst US wave of Covid.

I hope by the time it reaches MX it doesn't wreak havoc there, either.

(3) There is a system in the Atlantic, TD 8, which if the winds get strong enough could be named #TSHenri.

The below graphic shows you this storm and #Fred and #Grace.

Upcoming available names: Ida, Julian, Kate, and Larry.

TD8: Image
Read 7 tweets
16 Aug
(1) Here's my take on the clothing change aspect of these photos tweeted about 45 mins apart today.

Prob wore the jacket over the shirt, then took it off.

We don't know the time each pic was taken.

Maybe the 2nd tweet was sent by a staffer who hadn't checked prev. tweets.
(2) Others are commenting on the disparity between the displayed time in London and Moscow.

My hunch is that someone messed up when daylight saving changed in March. However:

It doesn't matter. To sane people.

And:
(3) There are complete and utter idiots unironically asking if Biden is dead, because of these photos.

May I remind y'all that similar inconsistencies were spotted in the photos of Trump at a table in the presidential suite at Walter Reed, when he had Covid in Oct 2020?
Read 15 tweets
15 Aug
Y'all blaming President Biden for the way Afghanistan is today but really you need to review what President Trump did there, like capitulating to Taliban demands to free Baladar in 2018, after 8yrs in custody.

An unmitigated fool. Blood on his hands.
nytimes.com/2018/10/25/wor…
Trump has blood on his hands in so many different ways. Along with his henchmen, some of whom are more competent than him and need to be stopped before they succeed at picking up his mantle.

I agreed with many aspects of his foreign policy. But not on Afghanistan.
I literally chose my Twitter handle @FreedomFriesInc to reflect my belief in the #CollectiveSecurity doctrine of institutions like #NATO, #ASEAN, (& the late #ANZUS, killed by NZ in 1986.)

In 2003 France let us down. So we jokingly renamed french fries. It was an early "meme".
Read 21 tweets
13 Aug
(1) When did you first realize Trump's habitual dishonesty was worse than his contemporaneous politicians?

For me it was on 4/5/18 when he paused for a microsecond before answering a question on Stormy Daniels.

(2) I hear ya, everyone is gonna try to say they wised up to him as early as possible, whether we did or not.

Gratuitous lying doesn't come naturally to me so I choose to mea culpa every time when it comes to #Cult45 and the past 5-6 years.

This lie was the first step for me.
(3) I've tried to become as skilled as I can be at reading body language. It can save you a lot of trouble in your life, because actions speak louder than words.

It's one of the most important life maxims to remember.

Actions speak louder than words.
Read 17 tweets
12 Aug
(1) NZ had just achieved it's largest Olympic medal haul in history. 20 from a country of 5 million people.

All our athletes, and the country were on a high.

Then 2 days ago 24 year old Olivia Podmore died by suicide.

au.sports.yahoo.com/olympics-2021-…
(2) I need to write a short Twitter thread so that some key messages get seen.

I have both professional & personal experience of trying to deal with suicide prevention & "postvention" in NZ.

We *can* learn some common signs of suicidal risk.

healthnavigator.org.nz/health-a-z/s/s…
(3) After decades of research around the world, the potential reasons why some people suicide are not a mystery.

We need to think about our loved ones, family, friends & others to see if they might be at risk. Then take action.*
Read 17 tweets
11 Aug
I'm sure Kabul will fall within a month or even sooner.😢

So that the deaths of 80* countries' soldiers wouldn't be in vain, I wanted the coalition to stay there longer. But then July 2021 ravaged the US w/ Delta.

The US needs it's people (& money) on the home front. Period.
*OK I see now it was >40 countries officially involved. I always thought it was more like 80, but I've made a mistake somewhere along the line. 20 years is a long time to follow the events of a war, right?

Anyway, it was a lot. Not just the USA. Even New Zealand helped...
I don't want the sacrifices of the other countries to be forgotten.

10 of my fellow Kiwis lost their lives serving in Afghanistan. There were a few more who fought for the UK but were NZ-born.

Lest we forget: newshub.co.nz/nznews/a-look-…
Read 14 tweets
11 Aug
(1) "Don't you want to see what happens if you don't give up?" #Nightbirde

This is relevant to everyone.

She is an angel lent to us and while she is here fighting I will absorb us much as I can from her hopeful soul.

(2) And if I have to go to her music & words to absorb that I will, in gratitude... the pandemic is a life changing, multi-year event that forces almost all of us to contemplate life itself in ways big and small. August 2021 is the harshest month yet for several countries.
(3) For these countries I cannot see a way for September to bring better news for us but we are going to try our darnedest to save lives and support each other.

So many things seem unimportant and right now for me they are.

Then a friend told me a #Nightbirde exists.❤️
Read 9 tweets