From Newsmakerblog’s AMERICA FILES: Enough About Fucking Virus, What Do We Paint Border Wall? Bonus Feature: UV-Cleaning Filthiest Subway on Planet

For what seems like years now we’ve focused on just one thing: Coronavirus. But other crises of No. 45’s making also need updating…and what do we find? A debate within Administration and Customs & Border Protection over painting border wall, at least sections not yet felled by Mexican drug smugglers and human-traffickers. We have some colorful ideas. BONUS FEATURE: Dynamic duo of Squibley & Bushwhacker report how New York City is using UV light to rid cars of dangerous virus on America’s most disgusting subway system. You won’t believe who, or what, they found in the wee hours beneath Gotham.

May 24, 2020

By Andrew Squibley and Arthur Bushwhacker, Even Lori Loughlin Couldn’t Get Them Into Community College

“Democracy Dies In Darkness…But Now Stands A Chance Thanks To Hydroxychloroquine”

WASHINGTON (Rueters) — The Orange Menace is once more pushing to have his southern border wall painted black, a $500 million design change, according to administration officials who are quietly exploring other, less costly, alternatives.

“POTUS has changed his mind — again, for the umpteenth time. He thinks black will make the wall look more foreboding and it’ll get really hot during the summer,” a Border Protection planner told Rueters.

“We are researching less expensive ways of getting it painted and have some interesting suggestions to consider,” said one official involved in the construction effort who, like others, spoke on the condition of anonymity for fear of being fired.

London-based mystery muralist “Banksy” has been contacted by State Department officials and submitted a number of ideas for decorating the fence on the US side.

“Banksy” offered several of his designs to the US Customs and Border Protection as an alternative to matte-black paint for southern border wall favored by Trump. They were judged too political in their message, officials said. But this one they knew would be green-lighted by the Oval Office. (Rueters photo)

President Trump has continued promoting his border wall during the coronavirus pandemic — even at times suggesting it would have had an effect on stopping the spread of the viral assassin. Were it only true, one Republican senator from a border state told Rueters.

The president’s determination to have the steel bollards coated in black has fluctuated during the past several years, and military commanders and border officials believed as recently as last fall that they had finally talked him out of it. They consider the black paint unnecessary, costly and a significant long-term maintenance burden, and they left it out of the original U.S. Customs and Border Protection design specifications.

“Trump has been distracted by the criticism he’s received for completely fucking up the country’s response to the pandemic,” a senior administration official said.

“We think this provides a window of opportunity to save a lot of money and make the wall look much more interesting than simply slathering it with black paint. We’ve got plenty of home-grown talent to help us spruce it up and add some informative elements to it to help the refugees on their way,” he said.

In keeping with No. 45’s lifetime devotion to promising huge and delivering little (if at all), only about 180 miles of the wall have been built along the 2,000-mile border, and some of the construction counted by the White House only replaced older structures. Also, of the 180 miles constructed, drug cartels and human-traffickers have sawed through in many locations.

Undeterred, CBP officials are still issuing billions of dollars in contracts and, with White House permission, have tapped billions more in military funds to help with the wall construction. The costs so far have already made the wall one of the most expensive infrastructure projects in U.S. history — all 180 miles of it (minus the holes).

BONUS FEATURE: Rueters top investigators Squibley and Bushwhacker recently spent three nights with a small army of Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) employees in their groundbreaking effort to kill the coronavirus inside more than 6,400 subway cars by using portable UV-light dispensers. The results — and other things — were unpredictable. Here is their story:

Andrew Squibley, left, sunburned from UV rays, shares nervous giggle with colleague Arthur Bushwhacker after first night of subway “zapping.” (Rueters, by Koppelperson)

“What we saw during those harrowing nights below Manhattan will haunt us forever,” the pair told their editors. “Who thought a light dispenser would work, killing a virus that has claimed nearly 100,000 American lives?”

“By the way, we wouldn’t recommend spending an overnight in the subway system for the faint of heart,” they said. “There’s some spooky stuff going down there. Underground New York is the realm of an odd collection of residents and other denizens,” the pair reported.

One senior MTA manager told Rueters the cost of UV “zapping” each car every day could easily take $100 million out of the system’s annual budget. “I’m not sure why we’re doing this, anyway. Who thought the coronavirus could live down there? Nothing else can.”

Rueters photographer Mitch Koppelperson defied a prohibition by his editor to join the reporters for a look into the abyss. “Jesus H. Christ,” he bellowed. “You can’t imagine what shows up in the cars as well as on the platform.”

Each of the thousands of cars in the country’s largest subway system will receive persistent baths of UV rays from portable dispensers between nighttime and daytime shifts, MTA managers told Rueters reporting team.

“We’re testing on MTA employees because we’re concerned the lights could harm workers or others hiding down below.”

But the new cleaning and testing program is not without its critics.

“It’s something of a moral dilemma, I suppose,” an MTA worker told Squibley and Bushwhacker. “At least it would be for me. I don’t think it really is for senior management.”

Graphics by The Schrader Studio

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