Whenever we hear of triage, of patients denied care because of a lack of ventilators, of doctors and nurses sick because they lack gloves and masks and gowns, remember: This is the work of Donald Trump and his family.
Sunday, March 29, 2020
On the one hand, according to Converse’s work (and I don’t think matters have changed much since he first published in 1962) the largest plurality makes its voting decisions based on what he called “group identification” and what we now call representation, it is a minority, perhaps 10-15%, that are even aware of policy. Yet any good or bad we get from government comes from policy and from the conduct and character of the people who govern. The largest group votes based on nothing that affects their lives and they get unpredictable results.
Ideally, democracy would create a bridge between the two; the candidate you identify with, that feel you could have a beer with or would like to have in your sewing circle should also be, or be able to pick, the people whose policies will be good for you. In practice, we get affinity scammers: Reagan and Trump and the like, but also various Democratic leaders, though they are less toxic.
In the end, voting for people you identify with is nothing more than voting for a warped mirror of yourself, a kind of self-regard. And every now and again, a great leader slips through the haze of self-regard, but it’s not common.
A successful progressive movement, if such a thing ever comes to pass, would combine the sense that the various leaders and elected officials were people you could trust with the choice of people of good character who could make good policy.
Wednesday, March 25, 2020
To her credit, Warren managed to get something for individuals, and reportedly Sanders managed to get gig economy workers included, but the overall deal stinks.
Meantime, we are still on track for genocide in the red states.
Tuesday, March 24, 2020
Call this what it is: a genocidal program.
Monday, March 23, 2020
Sunday, March 22, 2020
(This is an update of my 1,000 Plagues on the Senate post; refer to the original for the assumptions used.)
So I reran my model with a current list of Senators.
So, a bit different. The chance that no Senators die is up to 13%, which is bad odds; almost 9 in 10 for at least one death. The chance of one to three Senators dying is now 73%, roughly 3 in 4.
This is about to get real. Senator Rand Paul has tested positive for SARS-nCoV-2. He is thought to have been exposed on March 7ᵗʰ and his test results came back today, March 22ⁿᵈ. He did not self-quarantine and could easily have been contagious for over a week. It is likely that Sen. Paul has exposed the entire Senate to SARS-nCoV-2.
There is a bitter, bitter late Isaac Asimov story, “The Winnowing,” about a scientist who, threatened by some world government council, devises a poison that would reduce the world's population by randomly killing some percentage of the public. Instead, he uses it first on that council, poisoning himself as well, and saying, this was what you wanted, this is what you asked for – wasn't it? And so, here we are.
Sunday, March 15, 2020
- Biden would have acted wholeheartedly against the coronavirus epidemic.
- He will appoint competent people to his cabinet.
- He will appoint an honest competent jurist as his Attorney General.
- He will not have white supremacists as advisors.
- His Supreme Court appointments will be honest and competent. Ruth Bader Ginsburg will be able to retire when she wants.
- He will appoint honest competent justices to the Federal Courts.
- He has repudiated his support for the Hyde Amendment. He has made promises to adopt parts of Warren's bankruptcy proposals and Sanders education proposals; a big shift for him. These are campaign-year conversions. But with Warren and Sanders in the Senate, we may be able to make him keep these promises.
In Foreign Policy
- Biden will work to preserve US international alliances.
- Biden would never have abandoned the Kurds in the Middle East
- He won't be making concessions to North Korea.
- He won't be holding secret meetings with Vladimir Putin.
ElectabilityIndications are that Democratic voters will turn out for Biden – primary voters overwhelmingly have. He is popular with many African-Americans. He is less so with women, but if he chooses Kamala Harris as his running mate he may well be unbeatable; Harris may even become the first woman to be President.
So, I give you – Joseph Biden!
Tuesday, March 3, 2020
So here's a list of what he has done so far, and why I say he is racist, sexist, and classist:
- He voted for the Hyde Amendment for decades, and changed his mind just for this campaign.
- Anita Hill
- The incredibly punitive and racist Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994.
- The Bankruptcy Abuse Prevention and Consumer Protection Act of 2005.
Michael Bloomberg can relax; his tax cuts are safe with Biden. All the corruption issues are going to be let go and people will go around asking “Was this what we voted for?”
Warren is not a likely VP; she’s been Biden’s opponent for decades and she’d have to give up on ideals she’d pursued for decades to back Biden. I think the VP pick almost has to be a woman, and a woman of color would be a better choice. Harris is likely VP because of her skin color and sex, and because she let the banks off in California.
“When people show you who they are, believe them the first time.”