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Why are Americans putting up with this?

WaPo has an editorial this morning about how poor leadership has allowed the virus to flourish, necessitating more lockdowns and layoffs even though the country has already done this once at great sacrifice.

The road back will be even harder now than it was in March. The United States is experiencing multiple outbreaks from California to Florida that will seed more infections in the weeks and months ahead. The hope that summer’s warm weather would help, that the sacrifices made in March and April would be sufficient, that a miracle cure would arrive — all have been dashed. The United States faces a crisis unseen in recent generations, and if it deepens, the pain won’t be only in illness and death but also in education and economics.

Yesterday, the European Union told us that Americans are not welcome.

I’ve been an American all my life and this is not what I signed up for. We are supposed to be the most developed of developed nations. We were supposed to be better, stronger, than the old world. We were decades ahead of China and the rest of Asia.

All that is gone in the span of 3.5 years. All gone.

Don’t bother defending Trump and the Republicans. They did not rise to the occasion. They did not show their can-do spirit. They didn’t use the ingenuity and resources of the federal government that we all pay through the nose for.

All they did was beat their chests, whine about their freedom and stop local officials from enforcing mask requirements.

There’s something profoundly shameful about putting your own selfish individualism above the needs of others during a pandemic. But there’s no looking away from where we are as a nation. The rest of the world looks on with horror and the innocent among us can’t leave. They can’t leave their houses let alone the country. Now our chances of getting the virus from a once weekly trip to grocery story are even higher than they were in April.

Well done. Can you feel my revulsion and disgust? Interpret that any way you want. I’m not defending myself anymore. That applies to anyone of any party who is shocked and appalled by what we are witnessing. That number irrespective of party, is growing.

If you still support the “president”, you need help.

********************

Put this in the category of “thinking five impossible things before breakfast”:

I’ve been trying to figure out why the administration is so hell bent on dismantling Obamacare during a pandemic. Count me as not one of Obamacare’s biggest fans. I am securely on the side of the hard working working class, gig workers, self-employed and those unfortunates between jobs who get stuck in that no man’s land where part time employment makes you too rich for Medicaid but too poor for a subsidy. Yeah, wrap your head around that. I had to one year and it was ridiculous.

But I digress.

So, why would you want to get rid of the only lifeline some Americans have to health care, no matter how flawed, during a pandemic?

Well, leave it to the Russians paying the taliban to pick off American soldiers and the president doing a shrug to make me have an even more disturbing thought about this.

If you are the powerful who have a country in your jaws and you don’t like the idea of contributing some of your dragon hoard to universal healthcare, there are a couple of ways to make sure the pool of people you are mandated by law to cover is low:

1.) you can get rid of the mandate.

2.) you can make sure that a convenient pandemic gets rid of as many elderly people on Medicare and as many people with pre-existing conditions as possible who take advantage of the ACA protections. That right there will save you soooooo much money. Lots of old people dying along with the morbidly obese who tend to have a lot of expensive problems. And don’t forget the cancer patients who just might survive with the pricey chemo.

The pandemic can look like a budget measure if you’re in that psychopathically wealthy and powerful category.

I’d let it rage through the country and take out as many inconvenient people as possible. What do I care? I’ll have myself and my staff tested everyday, have my own stash of PPE and hide away in my mountain lodge somewhere west of Boise.

I can just hear you saying, “that’s f{#%ing crazy RD. It’s evil. No one would be stupid enough to try something like that and get away with it.”

Yeah, probably I just need more coffee.

Probably.

*****************

So I started to look around for locations west of Boise where I might hide my mountain lodge compound and stumbled upon Joseph, Oregon, which looks gobsmackingly beautiful:

I have to check the National and state parks in the vicinity… since I can’t take that walking tour of Scotland this year. 🙄

9 Responses

  1. Tragically, RD, it is not just the rest of the world that “looks on in horror.” Maybe it is my age (70) but i have been looking on in horror in crushing disbelief since Nov 2016. That is why your cull theory sounds valid to me and I wouldn’t be surprised if the GOP has been looking for just such an opportunity for decades. We are in a real time apocalyptic nightmare, we are shredding already fragile threads that bind us to our environment and stealing or destroying resources that will be needed to keep our population alive and to ensure a better future for our young. i am so tired of people saying calm down, not to worry, we will get through this, the system will work, we are good people. Are we? My horror is so consuming that i fear that we will not get through this because true evil has us by the genitals and we will turn on each other like starving rats.

    Joseph, Oregon looks glorious. Wonder what the inhabitants are like…

    P.S.: do i win the Debbie Downer Award for the Day, Month or Year?

    • No, you are not a Debbie Downer. Your pessimism is probably a good thing. At least you won’t be surprised when the bottom falls out.

  2. Excellent post, RD! Both you and Cats are absolutely right in your assessment of trump.

    You are both absolutely right regarding your assessment of trump and the GOP. These guys will do ANYTHING to keep power and have clearly shown that they will betray our country in order to do it. This is not the time to sugar coat what we are witnessing — the slow but certain destruction of America which is quickly morphing into a banana republic. To pretend otherwise is to be parallel with how the German people turned a blind eye to how and why Hitler rose to power. There, I said it. Hitler. If people read their history, they will see a close resemblance between Hitler’s meglomania/messiah complex and trump’s and recognize the consequences of not fighting back openly and without reservation to stop him NOW.

    What makes me the most furious is the media’s complicity in helping put trump in the WH. We cannot forget that HILLARY WAS RIGHT all along. Trump, indeed, is a puppet of one of our worst adversaries who wants to destroy us. In 2016, the media’s epic failure was in not vetting trump. Instead, they chose to focus 24/7 on attacking Hillary with no evidence of wrongdoing on her part. They, as much as the Russians, are responsible for putting trump in the WH. While racism is rampant and systemic and should be eradicated, so should sexism. But alas, women will have to continue to wait for the inequality and injustice we face daily to be addressed. Women’s right are always put at the back of the bus. But we have to acknowledge that sexism is as equally detrimental to society as racilsm because we all know our world will be a much better place were Hillary our president.

    Time is of the essence. This is not the time for the dems nor the American people who see what is happening under trump to play nice and give trump the “benefit of the doubt” or not expect him to go ape shit crazy as we get closer to the election and he is still behind. We should never take for granted the evil of which this man is capable. Instead, we must show the same energy, determination and commitment to taking back our country from tese thugs and traitors as was expressed by the 100,000’s who marched against police brutaility and racism (and still are) come election day. trump is the worst of the worse amongs those other deplorables (as Hillary so asutely observed) who continue to support and enable him and they will stop at nothing to stay in power. Neither should we stop at nothing to keep him from succeeding.

  3. Just reading Richard North Patterson’s book on the 2016 election. Mostly a compilation of his contemporaneous Huffpo reporting, with later annotations of what he did and did not get right.

    Accurate lambasting of the media for grading candidates on a curve (big bennie for Trump, obviously). NOT appropriate. Neither the coronavirus, nor foreign adversaries, nor any other challenge a president faces, will grade the incumbent so kindly.

    Maybe the country will finally learn that knowledge and competence actually count for something. Maybe a bit more than being fun at parties.

    • centaur,

      I read part of what Patterson was saying about the 2016 election but couldn’t take what he said to heart because he, along with the rest of the media, the crux of it was blaming only Hillary for the loss.

      I cannot accept the media’s analysis of what that election was about because it is not fair, balanced amd least of all objective. In fact, it’s always primarily self-serving! They never take any responisibility for how they treated her in comparison to trump. Even James Comey denies that his breaking protocol and insubordination to his boss, then AG Loretta Lynch, took it upon himself to announce publicly that the FBI was reopening their investigation into Hillary’s e-mails 6 days before the election had any adverse affect on the outcome of that election. Wow! that’s gaslighting squared!

      I never read where the media ever includes that, despite being attacked daily by the main stream media, the bernie bros, the republicans, Russia’s interference to help trump, she still won the popular vote by almost 3 million votes. You NEVER see the media acknowledging that her loss was due in large part to the overt sexism/misogyny thrown at her throughout that campaign. Why is that? A lesser, more unpopular candidate would have lost the popular vote too under those conditions!

      Neither trump, sanders nor the gaff prone biden have been treated in such a visceral way. From the beginning of this presidential election, the media has been propping biden up just like they did obama when he ran. None of the women who ran were given the same softball treatment received by the men.

      As long as these so-called journalist keep blaming Hillary alone for the loss, while ignoring all of the forces which rose against her winning, I refuse to accept their analysis of it, much less their contrition.

  4. Kathryn,
    With due respect. As I said, I haven’t read the whole book yet, but from what I’ve seen Patterson would agree with you that Hillary got a raw deal from the media and was quite clear about that in real time, not after the fact. Yes, some people actually are on your side here! As am I.

    Patterson was also critical, in real time, when Comey released the notorious letter regarding the FBI’s email investigation.

    If as I continue reading, I see something else that put him on the wrong side it would be my pleasure to take that into account as well.

    • centaur,

      I appreciate that you and others are on my side regarding what happened to Hillary in 2016 and glad that you are! However, my angst with the many analysees which have come out about the 2016 presidential election have, as a rule, fallen short in acknowledging all of the forces unleashed against Hillary, as well as taking ownership of the over the top biased and sexist reporting on Hillary. YOU CAN’T FIX A PROBLEM IF YOU DON’T ACKNOWLEDGE WHAT THE PROBLEM IS IN ITS TOTALITY. Case and point, the media went right back to their old ways in how they reported on the women who ran this time around while continuing to give biden a pass despite his lackluster, gaff ridden campaign until he reached South Carolina, while simultaneously reporting that the women should drop out of the race, even though they were performing at the same level as biden when these reports came out. Patterson’s analysis needs to offer “specifics” as to why Hillary got a raw deal with the media. He has to acknowledge unequivically that sexism played a major role in her defeat. Without that, it’s not an analysis but an opinion.

      Unless and until any analysis of women running for the last male preserve, the presidency, acknowledges without reservation how rampant sexism continues to undermine any woman running for the presidency, we will continue to get self-serving, narcisstic, corrupt, con men like trump in the WH. Perish the thought!

  5. A brick to an orange face. 😈

  6. It may not be fair, but I feel like apportioning most of the blame to Americans; certainly not all of them, but the tens of millions who do not live up to any ideal of citizenship. People who don’t read anything worthwhile, don’t know any history, have no sense of where we are or how we got here. People who actually sneer at logical argument or science. People who hide behind an evangelical or any other religion which makes a virtue of selfishness and ignorance.

    I have utter anger and contempt for most of American media. As Cats and Kathleen righteously expressed, the media did everything it could to get Trump elected and Hillary defeated. But that is no excuse for the people who voted that way. Yes, propaganda is powerful, and billionaires pouring in money to control narratives, are hard for many to resist; and the social media made it even worse. But if we had a nation of dedicated and decent people who had a reasonable capacity to logically figure out what is going on, and which candidate cared about them, as opposed to having contempt for them, this could never have happened. Of course Twain and Mencken and many others have had a pretty low opinion of Americans’ capacity to figure things out. This country has had a consistent anti-intellectualism running through it, and a proclivity for picking friendly but vacuous people to lead it. Examples are easy to come up with.

    The 2016 was like a dreadful nightmarish story of how one of the best candidates ever, ran against the absolute worst person in American history, and people were delighted to be able to choose him, and laughed and laughed about it. How could anyone watch Trump utter inanities, lie about everything, have a “platform” which was all about making rich people richer, and ignoring the threat of climate change and gun violence, and even consider voting for him? But they did, at least enough to give him the Electoral College. England would never have chosen a Trump (Johnson is bad and probably corrupt, but he is not that abysmally stupid), nor would Canada or New Zealand. Le Pen rose in France, but was defeated. Other countries choose tyrants, but they are mostly ones which had a centuries-old history of being subjugated by autocrats. America, the first representative democracy, somehow willingly chose the path of Russia and China and Turkey. I blame that on the populace.

    So I am afraid that the problems are deeper than if they had come from outside forces. How did climate change somehow turn into a political issue? How are there all these people screaming about how they do not want to wear masks, whose idea of freedom is just doing whatever they want to do? I know that there are good people out there who do good things. But those are not enough, we need a strong majority of them. And people have to be able to figure out what we are being pulled toward, which indeed is a dystopia like “Soylent Green,” where a few people have all the money, and everyone else is desperate to just get through the day. When you have millions of people who refuse to listen to science about the global warming, and about the pandemic, how does this get fixed? If I wanted to be really despairing about this, I would say that we are a nation of people who don’t understand democracy or economics or science, and are proud of it. That we would rather indulge ourselves watching witless comedies, or reading about the Kardashians, than actually thinking about things, and trying to learn. Bread and circuses, and precious little of even that. Watching TV images of people sitting maskless in bars and restaurants and beaches, chowing and drinking, smirking like they are smarter than all the people who stay home or at least wear masks, is enough to vividly show us what we are facing. We need a great leader to begin a new paradigm, but I do not see anyone like that on the stage. Maybe Hillary could have been that, but the absolute incapacity of people to see it, was probably predictable. The fault did not lie in Hillary, it lies in the American people.

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