By: Denise Simon | Founders Code
Dismissed were hundreds of members of 42 Pentagon advisory boards. 42 separate advisory boards. Really?
Current members being told to step down are only those appointed by the Pentagon and not those appointed by the White House or Congress. For example, four people appointed by the Pentagon to a congressionally mandated commission on stripping the names of Confederate generals from military bases will be removed but others on that panel appointed by Congress will remain.
A review of all the boards, and whether they are still needed, will now be the focus before new members are named.
The 42 advisory boards cost taxpayers millions of dollars each year and some of their work is believed to be potentially redundant, which added to the need for the review.
WASHINGTON—Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin dismissed every member of the Pentagon’s policy advisory boards Monday, ousting last-minute Trump administration nominees as well as officials appointed by previous administrations.
By removing every member, Mr. Austin avoided selectively firing those appointed by the Trump administration. The defense chief will name new members to each of the least a dozen boards in the coming weeks.
The move was foreshadowed last week when Mr. Austin suspended the onboarding process for Trump administration nominees to Pentagon advisory boards, effectively preventing them from being seated.
Mr. Austin’s directive last week applied to Trump nominees who were still in the security clearance process. Among those who were affected then were Corey Lewandowski, former President Donald Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign manager, and David Bossie, a former Trump deputy campaign manager, both of whom had been named to the Defense Business Board, an unpaid group that advises the defense secretary and other leaders on business practices.
Because of their potential access to classified information, it can take months for someone to get through the security clearance process and formally join a board. Mr. Austin’s directive last week suspended that process.
In the last weeks of the Trump administration, then acting Defense Secretary Chris Miller named at least a dozen supporters of President Trump to various Pentagon advisory boards.
Those included retired Brig. Gen. Anthony Tata, who weeks earlier had been rejected by the Senate for consideration as the Pentagon’s top policy official, even as he served in that position since June in an acting capacity. Senators and some retired generals expressed concern over inflammatory tweets he made years ago on Islam, President Barack Obama and Democratic lawmakers.
The advisory boards, some of which date back to at least the 1950s, were intended to be bipartisan and offer a diversity of opinion to Pentagon leaders on potential policies.
Among those removed from policy boards by Mr. Miller were former Secretaries of State Madeleine Albright and Henry Kissinger, former House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R., Va.) and former Rep. Jane Harman (D., Calif.), a onetime senior Democrat on the House Intelligence committee.
By: Daniel John Sobieski
New York’s Democrat Gov. Andrew Cuomo is the poster child for the most macabre chutzpah we have ever seen. He mismanaged his state’s Wuhan China virus pandemic to the point of herding COVID-19 patients into nursing homes where even he admits it spread like a wildfire through dry grass. Yet he blames everyone but himself for his state’s carnage, has written a book bizarrely claiming to be his state’s savior, and he’s even won an Emmy for his daily bloviating press conferences. It should have been for best performance in a horror show.
Now we know the carnage and death he inflicted on New York was worse than previously reported, the result of a statistical gimmick that can only be called a criminal cover-up. A new report by New York Attorney General Letitia James shows that the COVID deaths among nursing home residents were undercounted by as much as 50%, mostly thanks to the trick of failing to count the deaths of those who were readmitted to hospitals and died there. As CNBC reports:
The investigation found that the number of Covid deaths among nursing home residents in some facilities rose by more than 50% when residents who died in the hospital are counted. The state’s official Covid-19 death toll in nursing homes, which stands at more than 8,700, excludes patients who died after being transported to a hospital.
Democratic Gov. Andrew Cuomo has faced criticism for failing to disclose the total number of nursing-home residents who have died of Covid-19. In her sweeping report, James, also a Democrat, found that “many nursing home residents died from Covid-19 in hospitals after being transferred from their nursing homes, which is not reflected in D.O.H.’s published total nursing home death data.”
It was Andrew Cuomo who herded COVID patients into nursing homes causing massive death It was Andrew Cuomo who lied about it and covered it up. What the New York AG is reporting on is the cover-up of criminal negligence for which the only answer is the convening of a grand jury to bring criminal charges against Andrew Cuomo. As Fox News host Judge Jeanine Pirro said in an epic rant on her January 30 show:
Within days of your directive, President Trump delivered the USNS Comfort. The Javits Center was also available. Yet together, those giant makeshift hospitals didn’t have more than 100 New York patients.
So why would you force nursing homes to readmit COVID infected patients? You weren’t stupid? How many times did you take the Bar? But you’re good at blaming others, diverting attention from yourself. Another decision that indicates your malignant intent. Before seniors died, they were often moved to hospitals to die….
So now the question is, will the Attorney General who has jurisdiction over crimes refer your malfeasance to the Deputy Attorney General for a grand jury investigation? A primer on what they might consider: manslaughter on the second degree, Penal Law violation 125.15 when you recklessly cause the death of another person; criminally negligent homicide, New York Penal Law 125.10; when a person causes the death of a human being in a way that was careless, reckless, or an intent of; and endangering the welfare of an elderly person, Penal Law, Section 260.34, when one knowingly acts in a manner likely to be injurious to the physical welfare of a person unable to care for himself.
What is more reckless than ordering nursing homes to readmit COVID-19 positive patients released from hospitals? It is a gruesome almost calculated decision to keep hospital beds open, while the elderly are shuffled involuntarily back into death traps against their will, while a military boat sent by the Federal government, yes, sent by Donald Trump remains empty.
In his opening night speech at the Democratic National Convention, stunning for the depth and breadth of its horrific chutzpah and ghoulish hypocrisy, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo ignored his own criminal negligence in ushering patients infected with the Chinese Wuhan virus into New York nursing homes sentencing tens of thousands of vulnerable seniors to their deaths.
It was perhaps fitting that the first night of the party of death’s national convention, a party that supports the killing of unborn life on demand up to and even after the moment of birth, feature New York’s angel of nursing home death who turned nursing homes into death camps for seniors. Cuomo spent the evening obfuscating the origins of the disease, denying the immediate and effective response by the Trump administration, and not mentioning the federal help he received and ignored which could have saved untold lives. As Fox News reported:
New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo slammed President Trump’s response to the coronavirus pandemic during his Monday night speech to the Democratic National Convention, accusing the White House of “negligence” even as his own administration drew flak for thousands of deaths in New York’s nursing homes.
“Our collective strength is exercised through government. It is, in effect, our immune system. And our current federal government is dysfunctional and incompetent. It couldn’t fight off the virus. In fact, it didn’t even see it coming. The European virus infected the northeast while the White House was still fixated on China,” Cuomo said during his speech, an apparent counterpoint to Trump’s labeling of COVID-19 as the “China virus.”
He added: “The virus had been attacking us for months before they even knew it was here. We saw the failure of a government that tried to deny the virus, then tried to ignore it, and then tried to politicize it. The failed federal government that watched New York get ambushed by their negligence, and then watched New York suffer, but all through it learned nothing.”
OMG. To call these obscene lies would be charitable. There is no “European virus” unless Cuomo can tell us the country of origin and the identity of patient zero. But, hey, white Europeans brought racism to our shores so why not blame them for this deadly disease as well. In fact, the Chinese Wuhan virus came to Europe with the tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands of Chinese nationals working in Italy and the rest of Europe, returning after celebrating the Chinese New Year in their home country. Does Cuomo forget how China shut down domestic flights from Wuhan but deliberately let foreign flights leave Wuhan for Europe and New York, carrying infected individuals?
Trump shut down travel from the country of origin, China, even as the first U.S. case was confirmed, an action that saved perhaps hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of lives.
It’s hard to see anything coming when the World Health Organization was buying China’s lies about its origin and the likes of Dr. Anthony Fauci was telling us the U.S. had nothing to worry about and didn’t even have to wear masks. Did Cuomo see it coming? After all, he’s one of the deranged chicken littles that sees climate change in every melting snowflake.
Trump gave Cuomo, who invented a phony ventilator crisis, more ventilators than he could handle, turned convention centers into world-class treatment facilities, built field hospitals in Central Park, and placed massive hospital ships in New York Harbor. Cuomo used little of this massive help, preferring instead to force COVID patients into nursing homes, an action that killed thousands of seniors. Roughly half of COVID deaths occurred in nursing homes in New York and elsewhere, avoidable deaths caused by bloviating politicians. New York didn’t get ambushed by federal negligence, but by Cuomo’s criminal orders.
Fox News Meteorologist Janice Dean’s in-laws died as a result of Andrew Cuomo’s criminal negligence and on the day Cuomo spoke at the DNC National Convention she finally got to tell her story before New York lawmakers. As Fox News detailed:
Fox News senior meteorologist Janice Dean, who recently lost her elderly in-laws to COVID-19, finally got to testify before New York State lawmakers on nursing home deaths on Monday after she was denied the opportunity the week before.
Dean told “Fox & Friends” on Tuesday that New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is not providing the exact numbers of those who died from COVID-19 in adult care facilities because “New York state does not count the numbers that we lost in hospitals from nursing homes.”
“We need those numbers to move forward and help change the laws,” Dean said. “We need an independent bipartisan investigation that involves subpoena power so we can get the health commissioner on the hot seat and ask questions and get truthful answers.”
She said New York State Sen. Thomas O’Mara, a Republican, had admitted to her “that they [the Senate Majority] were uncomfortable having [her] as a witness,” so they took her off the list. Speaking on the “Brian Kilmeade Show” last week, Dean said she believed Cuomo or his administration were behind the decision….
Dean said her father-in-law, who was in a nursing home and rehabilitation center, died the same day she and her husband found out he was sick and that they didn’t know he had contracted the novel coronavirus until they saw his death certificate.
Dean also said that her husband’s mother contracted COVID-19 in her assisted living facility. She was transported to the hospital and died in the hospital. Dean’s mother-in-law died on April 14, about two weeks after her father-in-law passed away from the novel coronavirus….
“We don’t know the full numbers,” Dean said on Tuesday. “Cuomo and his health commissioner have been asked time and time again to give us the actual total deaths that happened, not only in nursing homes but from seniors that were transported to hospitals and died in hospitals even though they got COVID-19 in their respective elder care facilities.”
The truth should make Andrew Cuomo uncomfortable and a full investigation should also make him accountable. His callous words are particularly bitter to the families of the nursing home residents his administration sentenced to death by requiring those with COVID-19 not to be denied admission to them. Cuomo at one point said he didn’t know, but it was the job of this know-it-all to know. Maybe, like a New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said of the Bill of Rights, such knowledge is above his pay grade. Arguably, this fiasco makes Gov. Cuomo New York’s latest and greatest serial killer:
New York’s health commissioner on Monday defended a directive that requires nursing homes to readmit residents who’ve tested positive for the coronavirus — as Gov. Andrew Cuomo revealed he didn’t know the policy was in place.
Cuomo was asked about the state’s policy on admitting or readmitting to nursing homes people who’d tested positive for COVID-19.
“That’s a good question, I don’t know,” the governor said.
Cuomo’s startling admission came days after the state revealed last week that at least 3,316 people in nursing homes and adult care facilities had died of coronavirus at their residences or in hospitals across the state.
Cuomo, the great healthcare expert and governor extraordinaire lectures the nation and President Trump on what needs to be done to see to the well-being of the people first – particularly the most vulnerable. He didn’t. Few people know, and Cuomo doesn’t tell them, that a quarter of New York deaths have occurred in nursing homes he wasn’t paying attention to. If he had been he would have been aware of the death sentence his administration gave many vulnerable seniors:
… look at the now-infamous March 25 directive from the New York State Department of Health that orders those homes and rehabilitation centers to admit and readmit patients sick with the coronavirus. The devil comes in the first sentence of the fifth paragraph:
“No resident shall be denied re-admission or admission to the NH solely based on a confirmed or suspected diagnosis of COVID-19.” …
The disease has claimed more than 3,500 souls in nursing and rehab centers or nearly 25 percent of the total known deaths in the state. There is no way to know exactly how many died as a result of the state order, but the number is certainly not zero. The cause and effect relationship is obvious.
Cuomo at one point claimed federal guidelines led to what amounts to his criminal negligence, forcing his hand, yet most states did not do what he did:
Other states, recognizing the dangers of infecting the vulnerable, required or encouraged nursing homes to set up separate units or staffs to handle patients testing positive. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, widely criticized in the national media for avoiding a total lockdown, zeroed in on nursing homes, encouraging repeated testing and temperature-taking of residents and staff, and isolating anyone testing positive. Florida, a state with 2 million more people than New York, had just 714 nursing home deaths, 13% of the number in New York.
One estimate says nursing homes have accounted for upwards of 46% of virus deaths, yet states like Cuomo’s New York made no effort to protect seniors who were among the most vulnerable. Perhaps it was campaign cash that persuaded Cuomo to look the other way as seniors were sent to their deaths. He accepted reelection cash from a hospital association and then gave immunity to those who operate nursing homes:
As Governor Andrew Cuomo faced a spirited challenge in his bid to win New York’s 2018 Democratic primary, his political apparatus got a last-minute boost: a powerful healthcare industry group suddenly poured more than $1m into a Democratic committee backing his campaign.
Less than two years after that flood of cash from the Greater New York Hospital Association (GNYHA), Cuomo signed legislation last month quietly shielding hospital and nursing home executives from the threat of lawsuits stemming from the coronavirus outbreak. The provision, inserted into an annual budget bill by Cuomo’s aides, created one of the nation’s most explicit immunity protections for healthcare industry officials, according to legal experts.
New York Post columnist Miranda Devine recently noted that Cuomo was still sending COOVID patients into nursing homes, not only failing to protect the most vulnerable but deliberately putting them at risk:
“And, it’s obscene really that he’s not admitting that now. He is still sending them back there and he’s acting as if there was no choice. Of course, there was a choice,” she remarked, noting that President Trump sent a Navy ship to New York City to assist and the Javits Center was converted into a care facility.
The nursing homes were begging for them not to be sent back, these COVID positive patients from hospitals and it was just impossible for them. They were short-staffed. How could they quarantine these elderly, frail people?” she asked….
“He is still doing it and this is what is so reprehensible. It’s one thing to make a mistake in the heat of the moment. It’s another to dig your heels in while people are still dying,” Devine continued. “I mean, in this last week, we have added another 1,700 that hadn’t been counted before to the death toll in nursing homes. So, just stop it. Admit you did wrong and fix it.”
Somehow this was never brought up when Chris Cuomo, who violated quarantine rules to visit another property he owned, interviewed brother Andrew. Instead of asking why Andrew herded COVID patients into nursing homes, Chris asked Andrew how he felt about being single and eligible again.
Trump’s actions didn’t lead to the deaths of Janice Dean’s in-laws and thousands of other seniors but Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s did, He emptied the jails to protect prisoners from COVID then sent COVID patients into nursing homes to infect and kill seniors. Andrew Cuomo belongs in prison where he can polish his Emmy, perhaps write another book, or, better yet, knit some COVID face masks.
*Daniel John Sobieski is a former editorial writer for Investor’s Business Daily and freelance writer whose pieces have appeared in Human Events, Reason Magazine, and the Chicago Sun-Times among other publications.