Democrats obstruct themselves again

Infrastructure

There is a new blog post entitled, “If you seek justice, don’t blame the U.S. Senate Parliamentarian.”

Jennifer Haberkorn, “Senate parliamentarian won’t allow citizenship pathway for immigrants in Democrats’ spending bill,” Los Angeles Times, September 19, 2021, https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2021-09-19/parliamentarian-decision-on-pathway-to-citizenship

Jonathan Chait, “Kyrsten Sinema Threatens to Kill Her Own Infrastructure Bill,” New York, September 20, 2021, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2021/09/kyrsten-sinema-threatens-infrastructure-bill-biden-build-back-better.html

Paul Waldman, “Kyrsten Sinema needs to show us what she believes in,” Washington Post, September 20, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/09/20/kyrsten-sinema-needs-show-us-what-she-believes/


Donald Trump

Coup attempt

Isaac Stanley-Becker, “Lindsey Graham and Mike Lee personally vetted Trump’s fraud claims, new book says. They were unpersuaded,” Washington Post, September 20, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/09/20/peril-woodward-costa-graham-lee-fraud/


Wall Street

This drop in the stock market seems a little too far out of the blue to strike me as significant, but it is a relatively large drop and it does have some folks worried.[1] “The immediate trigger seems to be a Reuters story on Friday saying that Chinese officials told property tycoons in Hong Kong to be more patriotic and back Beijing’s interests in the city, including solving the city’s acute housing shortage,”[2] which is not at all the sort of thing capitalists like to hear. Remember always that the psychology of the market is more important than the actual data.

That said, if the worriers are right about the property market—I’d be surprised but I’m also not paying particular attention—the U.S. property, market[3] where prices have been skyrocketing,[4] could be affected.[5]

Clare Jim and Farah Master, “With tighter grip, Beijing sends message to Hong Kong tycoons: fall in line,” Reuters, September 17, 2021, copy in possession of author.

Gunjan Banerji and Elaine Yu, “Stock Market Pares Losses, but Dow, S&P 500 Fall Nearly 2%,” Wall Street Journal, September 20, 2021, https://www.wsj.com/articles/stock-futures-european-and-asian-indexes-fall-sharply-11632123909

Lianting Tu and Low De Wei, “Contagion worries as Chinese property developer Sinic sinks 87pc,” Sydney Morning Herald, September 20, 2021, https://www.smh.com.au/business/companies/contagion-worries-as-chinese-property-developer-sinic-sinks-87pc-20210920-p58tby.html

Jacky Wong, “Hong Kong Tycoons Won’t Escape China Crackdown,” Wall Street Journal, September 20, 2021, https://www.wsj.com/articles/hong-kong-tycoons-wont-escape-chinese-populism-11632135169


  1. [1]Gunjan Banerji and Elaine Yu, “Stock Market Pares Losses, but Dow, S&P 500 Fall Nearly 2%,” Wall Street Journal, September 20, 2021, https://www.wsj.com/articles/stock-futures-european-and-asian-indexes-fall-sharply-11632123909
  2. [2]Jacky Wong, “Hong Kong Tycoons Won’t Escape China Crackdown,” Wall Street Journal, September 20, 2021, https://www.wsj.com/articles/hong-kong-tycoons-wont-escape-chinese-populism-11632135169
  3. [3]Gunjan Banerji and Elaine Yu, “Stock Market Pares Losses, but Dow, S&P 500 Fall Nearly 2%,” Wall Street Journal, September 20, 2021, https://www.wsj.com/articles/stock-futures-european-and-asian-indexes-fall-sharply-11632123909
  4. [4]Jerusalem Demsas, “Covid-19 caused a recession. So why did the housing market boom?” Vox, February 5, 2021, https://www.vox.com/22264268/covid-19-housing-insecurity-housing-prices-mortgage-rates-pandemic-zoning-supply-demand
  5. [5]Gunjan Banerji and Elaine Yu, “Stock Market Pares Losses, but Dow, S&P 500 Fall Nearly 2%,” Wall Street Journal, September 20, 2021, https://www.wsj.com/articles/stock-futures-european-and-asian-indexes-fall-sharply-11632123909

‘Justice for J6’ fizzles but Trumpism is still a problem

Donald Trump

Coup attempt

Geneva Sands, “DHS warns of potential for violence surrounding the ‘Justice for J6’ rally in intelligence brief,” CNN, September 16, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/09/16/politics/dhs-intelligence-brief-potential-violence/index.html

Emily Davies et al., “‘Justice for J6’ rally starts and ends with small crowds and tight security,” Washington Post, September 18, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/dc-md-va/2021/09/18/justice-j6-rally-capitol-riot-dc/

Jonathan Lai, “Pa. Senate Democrats sue Republicans to block election review subpoena,” Philadelphia Inquirer, September 18, 2021, https://www.inquirer.com/politics/election/pa-democrats-sue-republican-election-review-20210918.html


Pandemic

Evictions

Liz Theoharis, “The Land of the Free, Where So Many of the Brave Are Homeless,” TomDispatch, September 16, 2021, https://tomdispatch.com/the-land-of-the-free-where-so-many-of-the-brave-are-homeless/


Pollution

Local

Colin Jerolmack, “They Couldn’t Drink Their Water. And Still, They Stayed Quiet,” New York Times, September 17, 2021, https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/17/opinion/sunday/fracking-pennsylvania-water-contamination.html


California

Secession

The text originally in a previous issue of the Irregular Bullshit has been moved, expanded, and revised in a new blog post entitled, “What is the State of Jefferson?

Ryan Sabalow, “Newsom lost big in California’s conservative State of Jefferson. It barely mattered,” Sacramento Bee, September 15, 2021, https://www.sacbee.com/news/california/article254263153.html

Hailey Branson-Potts, “In red California, anger over recall blowout. ‘The Democratic Party is the New York Yankees,’” Los Angeles Times, September 17, 2021, https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2021-09-18/rural-red-california-recall-election

Maria L. La Ganga and Anita Chabria, “The Central Valley gives California a recall rarity: a squeaker of a race,” Los Angeles Times, September 18, 2021, https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2021-09-18/newsom-california-recall-race-tight-fresno-merced


Pipe dreams versus boosters

Donald Trump

Militia

Hannah Allam and Spencer S. Hsu, “Oath Keepers founder draws scrutiny from federal officials and followers,” Washington Post, September 17, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/rhodes-oath-keepers-capitol-riot/2021/09/16/a6a872c0-10b6-11ec-a511-cb913c7e5ba0_story.html

Coup attempt

News of this rally, in support of those charged in the January 6 coup attempt, has been slow to reach me. It’s scheduled for today (September 18).[1]

Luke Broadwater, “Republicans, Wary of Political Fallout, Steer Clear of Rally for Riot Suspects,” New York Times, September 15, 2021, https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/15/us/politics/republicans-justice-for-j6-rally.html

Geneva Sands, “DHS warns of potential for violence surrounding the ‘Justice for J6’ rally in intelligence brief,” CNN, September 16, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/09/16/politics/dhs-intelligence-brief-potential-violence/index.html


Pandemic

National

Boosters are a good thing:[2]

[The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] found that the biggest difference between the vaccine made by Moderna and Pfizer/BioNtech’s vaccine was driven by a decline that started about four months after people were fully vaccinated with Pfizer’s vaccine.[3]

Despite that,

Expert advisers to the Food and Drug Administration voted unanimously Friday to recommend that the agency authorize a booster shot of the Pfizer-BioNTech coronavirus vaccine six months after vaccination for people 65 years and older and for anyone at risk for severe illness.

The vote is not binding, and Peter Marks, the FDA official overseeing coronavirus vaccines, indicated that the final decision could be slightly different, encompassing people who are at higher risk of infection because of their professions, such as health-care workers and front-line employees, including teachers. The advisory committee members were polled on whether they would agree with making boosters available to people who were at risk of infection because of workplace exposure, and they all said yes.[4]

In this coverage, I’m not seeing a coherent argument against booster shots for all. The only one I’m aware of is that the World Health Organization would really rather the shots be distributed to places where people are currently unable even to get their first shots,[5] but the assumption here seems to be that shots not administered in the U.S. can be distributed elsewhere; given expiration dates for these vaccines, I’m not clear that that’s the case and I’m frankly not seeing the will to produce and distribute vaccines for a population well north of 7 billion people. Criticize policymakers for this and more[6] all you like; you’ll be absolutely right, but apart from token measures, they appear unmoved.

So the question here is whether we cling to a pipe dream of a proper international distribution that would actually help to contain the disease and limit new, potentially more dangerous variants, or we do what we can for the people that we can.

I’m also not seeing how or if this affects the earlier recommendation for a booster for most people eight months after being fully vaccinated.[7]

At least until I hear otherwise—I’m 62 years old and thus below the age threshold recommended in this Food and Drug Administration panel vote[8]—I remain scheduled for a booster with the Moderna vaccine on October 9.[9] It will have been 197 days since my second shot of the Pfizer vaccine. Driving for Uber in an area with many vaccine refusers, I’m certainly on the front lines.

Oni Blackstock and Uché Blackstock, “We’re not calling out Nicki Minaj. We’re calling her in,” Washington Post, September 17, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/09/17/nicki-minaj-vaccine-tweet-covid-infertility-misinformation/

Maggie Fox, “Moderna’s vaccine is the most effective, but Pfizer and J&J also protect well, CDC-led study says,” CNN, September 17, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/09/17/health/moderna-vaccine-most-effective-cdc-study/index.html

Michael Hiltzik, “‘Death panels’ arrive — in COVID-stricken Republican Idaho,” Los Angeles Times, September 17, 2021, https://www.latimes.com/business/story/2021-09-17/death-panels-republican-covid-stricken-idaho

Carolyn Y. Johnson, Laurie McGinley, and Joel Achenbach, “FDA panel endorses coronavirus boosters for older adults and those at risk of serious illness,” Washington Post, September 17, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/2021/09/17/covid-booster-shots-fda-recommendation/

Times of Israel, “Study: COVID booster recipients 20 times more protected against serious illness,” September 17, 2021, https://www.timesofisrael.com/study-covid-booster-recipients-20-times-more-protected-against-serious-illness/

Evictions

Liz Theoharis, “The Land of the Free, Where So Many of the Brave Are Homeless,” TomDispatch, September 16, 2021, https://tomdispatch.com/the-land-of-the-free-where-so-many-of-the-brave-are-homeless/


Afghanistan

Emma Graham-Harrison, “Taliban ban girls from secondary education in Afghanistan,” Guardian, September 17, 2021, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/sep/17/taliban-ban-girls-from-secondary-education-in-afghanistan

Alex Horton et al., “U.S. military admits ‘horrible mistake’ in Kabul drone strike that killed 10 Afghans,” Washington Post, September 17, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/2021/09/17/drone-strike-kabul-afghanistan/

Julia Ioffe, “The Divorce Heard Around Washington,” Puck, September 17, 2021, https://puck.news/the-divorce-heard-around-washington/


Infrastructure

Andrew Restuccia, “Biden Push to Replace America’s Lead Pipes Faces Challenges,” Wall Street Journal, September 17, 2021, https://www.wsj.com/articles/biden-push-to-replace-americas-lead-pipes-faces-challenges-11631880001


Jefferson

The text originally here has been moved, expanded, and revised in a new blog post entitled, “What is the State of Jefferson?

Ryan Sabalow, “Newsom lost big in California’s conservative State of Jefferson. It barely mattered,” Sacramento Bee, September 15, 2021, https://www.sacbee.com/news/california/article254263153.html

Hailey Branson-Potts, “In red California, anger over recall blowout. ‘The Democratic Party is the New York Yankees,’” Los Angeles Times, September 17, 2021, https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2021-09-18/rural-red-california-recall-election


  1. [1]Luke Broadwater, “Republicans, Wary of Political Fallout, Steer Clear of Rally for Riot Suspects,” New York Times, September 15, 2021, https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/15/us/politics/republicans-justice-for-j6-rally.html; Geneva Sands, “DHS warns of potential for violence surrounding the ‘Justice for J6’ rally in intelligence brief,” CNN, September 16, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/09/16/politics/dhs-intelligence-brief-potential-violence/index.html
  2. [2]Maggie Fox, “Moderna’s vaccine is the most effective, but Pfizer and J&J also protect well, CDC-led study says,” CNN, September 17, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/09/17/health/moderna-vaccine-most-effective-cdc-study/index.html
  3. [3]Maggie Fox, “Moderna’s vaccine is the most effective, but Pfizer and J&J also protect well, CDC-led study says,” CNN, September 17, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/09/17/health/moderna-vaccine-most-effective-cdc-study/index.html
  4. [4]Carolyn Y. Johnson, Laurie McGinley, and Joel Achenbach, “FDA panel endorses coronavirus boosters for older adults and those at risk of serious illness,” Washington Post, September 17, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/2021/09/17/covid-booster-shots-fda-recommendation/
  5. [5]Helen Branswell, “WHO director-general slams notion of Covid-19 vaccine booster doses given global health needs,” Stat, July 12, 2021, https://www.statnews.com/2021/07/12/who-director-general-slams-notion-of-covid-19-vaccine-booster-doses-given-global-health-needs/; Bryan Pietsch, Adela Suliman, and Hannah Knowles, “WHO calls for moratorium on booster vaccine shots through September, citing global disparity,” Washington Post, August 4, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/nation/2021/08/04/coronavirus-covid-live-updates-us/
  6. [6]Hindu, “U.S. defends restrictions on export of COVID-19 vaccine raw materials amid India’s request to lift ban,” April 23, 2021, https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/us-defends-restrictions-on-export-of-covid-19-vaccine-raw-materials-amid-indias-request-to-lift-ban/article34391251.ece; Christopher Rowland, Emily Rauhala, and Miriam Berger, “Drug companies defend vaccine monopolies in face of global outcry,” Washington Post, March 20, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2021/03/20/covid-vaccine-global-shortages/
  7. [7]Sharon LaFraniere, “U.S. to Advise Boosters for Most Americans 8 Months After Vaccination,” New York Times, August 16, 2021, https://www.nytimes.com/2021/08/16/us/vaccination-booster-shots.html
  8. [8]Carolyn Y. Johnson, Laurie McGinley, and Joel Achenbach, “FDA panel endorses coronavirus boosters for older adults and those at risk of serious illness,” Washington Post, September 17, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/2021/09/17/covid-booster-shots-fda-recommendation/
  9. [9]There is some evidence that mixing vaccines, at least in the initial doses, induces a more robust immune response. I’m hoping for the same with the booster. Tala Michel Issa, “Is it safe to mix-and-match COVID-19 vaccines? Here’s what we know so far,” Al Arabiya, June 23, 2021, https://english.alarabiya.net/coronavirus/2021/06/23/s-it-safe-to-mix-and-match-COVID-19-vaccines-Here-s-what-we-know-so-far

State of Jefferson brings three more California counties on board

Jennifer Medina, “California Counties Talk of Cutting Ties to State,” New York Times, July 12, 2011, https://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/13/us/13secession.html

Public CEO, “Modoc County Votes to Join Siskiyou in Secessionist Movement,” September 24, 2013, https://www.publicceo.com/2013/09/breaking-modoc-county-votes-to-join-siskiyou-in-secessionist-movement/

Evan McMurry, “5 far-right groups trying to secede from America,” Salon, October 12, 2013, https://www.salon.com/2013/10/12/five_different_culturally_homogenous_secessionist_movements_partner/

Katie Orr, “The Renewed Effort For The State Of Jefferson,” KPBS, October 28, 2013, https://www.kpbs.org/news/2013/oct/28/renewed-effort-state-jefferson/

Gregory Ferenstein, “Tim Draper Wants To Split California Into Pieces And Turn Silicon Valley Into Its Own State,” TechCrunch, December 19, 2013, https://techcrunch.com/2013/12/19/tim-draper-six-californias-secede-silicon-valley-ballot-initiative/

Jim Miller, “Six Californias initiative fails to make 2016 ballot,” Sacramento Bee, September 12, 2014, https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article2609555.html

Alexei Koseff, “State of Jefferson brings three more California counties on board,” Sacramento Bee, January 15, 2015, https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article6684729.html

Elizabeth Larson, “Supervisors vote to place State of Jefferson matter on November 2016 ballot,” Lake County News, March 4, 2015, https://www.lakeconews.com/component/content/article/142-local-government/40796-supervisors-vote-to-place-state-of-jefferson-matter-on-november-2016-ballot

Jane Braxton Little, “State of Jefferson proponents again try to persuade Plumas County supervisors,” Sacramento Bee, April 15, 2015, https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/article18557765.html

Eli Nymeyer, “Another step toward Jefferson: 3-2 vote puts secession on November ballot,” Lake County Record-Bee, March 3, 2015, http://www.record-bee.com/general-news/20150303/another-step-toward-jefferson-3-2-vote-puts-secession-on-november-ballot

Mike Pearl, “Meet the California Separatists Leading a New Movement to Secede from the United States,” Vice, February 17, 2016, https://www.vice.com/en/article/wd7a94/meet-the-californians-inspired-by-scotland-to-pursue-independent-nationhood

Seung Lee, “Calexit? Brexit Buoys California Independence Movement,” Newsweek, June 25, 2016, https://www.newsweek.com/calexit-brexit-buoys-california-independence-movement-474576

Clare Foran, “American Secessionists Dream of Declaring Independence,” Atlantic, July 4, 2016, https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2016/07/secession-trump-brexit/489689/

Annabelle Timsit, “5 U.S. Independence Movements Inspired by Brexit,” Politico, July 4, 2016, https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2016/07/5-us-independence-movements-inspired-by-brexit-214010/

Olivia Solon, “Silicon Valley investors call for California to secede from the US after Trump win,” Guardian, November 9, 2016, https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/nov/09/trump-win-california-secede-calexit-silicon-valley

Lenny Mendonca, “California must lead, not secede,” San Francisco Chronicle, December 18, 2016, https://www.sfchronicle.com/opinion/openforum/article/California-must-lead-not-secede-10804752.php

Alexei Koseff, “State of Jefferson supporters plan bill seeking independence from California,” Sacramento Bee, January 6, 2016, https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article53355675.html

Lake County News, “State of Jefferson update: Plumas supervisors rescind Jefferson advisory vote resolution,” January 14, 2016, https://www.lakeconews.com/news/142-local-government/44797–state-of-jefferson-update-plumas-supervisors-rescind-jefferson-advisory-vote-resolution

Elizabeth Larson, “State of Jefferson update: Lassen County residents vote down joining Jefferson, supporters plan assembly,” Lake County News, June 13, 2016, https://www.lakeconews.com/component/content/article/142-local-government/46712-state-of-jefferson-update-lassen-county-residents-vote-down-joining-jefferson-supporters-plan-assembly

Sharon Bernstein, “More Californians dreaming of a country without Trump: poll,” Reuters, January 23, 2017, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-california-secession/more-californians-dreaming-of-a-country-without-trump-poll-idUSKBN1572KB

Nicole Sganga, “Cal-exit? Meet the movement for Californian secession,” CBS News, February 20, 2017, https://www.cbsnews.com/news/cal-exit-meet-the-movement-for-californian-secession/

Thomas Fuller, “California’s Far North Deplores ‘Tyranny’ of the Urban Majority,” New York Times, July 2, 2017, https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/02/us/california-far-north-identity-conservative.html

Reuters, “Tech billionaire says his plan to break up California ready for voters,” April 12, 2018, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-california-partition/tech-billionaire-says-his-plan-to-break-up-california-ready-for-voters-idUSKBN1HJ36D

Andrea Diaz, “3 Californias? The initiative to break up the state may be on the ballot in November,” CNN, April 13, 2018, https://www.cnn.com/2018/04/13/us/california-closer-to-split-into-three-states-trnd/index.html

Redding Record-Searchlight, “Siskiyou supervisors support withdrawal from California,” Eureka Times-Standard, July 30, 2018, https://www.times-standard.com/2013/09/04/siskiyou-supervisors-support-withdrawal-from-california/

Jason Morash and Jason Morash Lake, “County finds Jefferson proposal lacking,” Lake County Record-Bee, August 23, 2018, https://www.record-bee.com/2015/12/16/county-finds-jefferson-proposal-lacking/

Ryan Sabalow, “Newsom lost big in California’s conservative State of Jefferson. It barely mattered,” Sacramento Bee, September 15, 2021, https://www.sacbee.com/news/california/article254263153.html

Hailey Branson-Potts, “In red California, anger over recall blowout. ‘The Democratic Party is the New York Yankees,’” Los Angeles Times, September 17, 2021, https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2021-09-18/rural-red-california-recall-election

Maria L. La Ganga and Anita Chabria, “The Central Valley gives California a recall rarity: a squeaker of a race,” Los Angeles Times, September 18, 2021, https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2021-09-18/newsom-california-recall-race-tight-fresno-merced

On Yom Kippur, a reminder

I don’t know if there’s been a threat but I noticed Pittsburgh police stationed outside synagogues in Shadyside and Squirrel Hill. It was Yom Kippur, evidently the holiest day of the Jewish calendar. It is also the city—Squirrel Hill is the neighborhood—where the Tree of Life synagogue shooting occurred[1] and that the Federal Bureau of Investigation has named a “white supremacist hub.”[2]


Pandemic

It shouldn’t even remotely be a surprise, but this is very much the wrong time to need medical care in any area where COVID-19 vaccine refusal is substantial. There has been an avalanche of stories[3] that I’m frankly still catching up on and I’m just guessing the Justice Department lawyers will have plenty of ammunition for arguing the state has a compelling interest in Joe Biden’s vaccine mandate.[4]

National

Timothy Bella, “Alabama man dies after being turned away from 43 hospitals as covid packs ICUs, family says,” Washington Post, September 12, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/2021/09/12/alabama-ray-demonia-hospitals-icu/

Paula Aceves, “The Fake Vaxx Card Next to You,” New York, September 14, 2021, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2021/09/nyc-vaccine-mandate-fake-cards-are-booming.html

Betsy Phillips, “I was supposed to have life-saving surgery. Tennessee’s covid-19 surge cost me a hospital bed,” Washington Post, September 14, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/09/14/tennessee-covid-19-surge-hospital-beds-surgery/

Sarah Pulliam Bailey, “This pastor will sign a religious exemption for vaccines if you donate to his church,” Washington Post, September 15, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/religion/2021/09/15/pastor-donate-vaccine-religious-exemption/

Jenny Deam, “A Boy Went to a COVID-Swamped ER. He Waited for Hours. Then His Appendix Burst,” ProPublica, September 15, 2021, https://www.propublica.org/article/a-boy-went-to-a-covid-swamped-er-he-waited-for-hours-then-his-appendix-burst

Rebecca Boone, “COVID-19 surge forces health care rationing in parts of West,” ABC News, September 16, 2021, https://abcnews.go.com/Health/wireStory/idaho-rations-health-care-statewide-covid-surge-continues-80056295

Pennsylvania

Julia Felton, “Breakthrough covid cases jump in Allegheny County,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 15, 2021, https://triblive.com/local/breakthrough-covid-cases-jump-in-allegheny-county/

Julia Felton, “Feds seize 2 shipments of fake covid vaccination cards in Pittsburgh,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 15, 2021, https://triblive.com/local/regional/officers-seize-2-shipments-of-fake-covid-vaccination-cards-in-pittsburgh/

Amy Hudak, “Wait times growing at Pittsburgh area hospital emergency rooms,” WPXI, September 16, 2021, https://www.wpxi.com/news/top-stories/pittsburgh-area-hospitals-seeing-longer-wait-times-care/FEH2ZZNSIBF45N37WFRJW7563A/


Gig economy

Levi Sumagaysay, “Uber, Lyft and other gig companies facing fights over Prop. 22 in California — and in states where they want to replicate it,” MarketWatch, September 16, 2021, https://www.marketwatch.com/story/gig-companies-facing-fights-over-prop-22-in-california-and-in-states-where-they-want-to-replicate-it-11631734329


Infrastructure

Mike DeBonis, “Joe Manchin gets all the attention. But Kyrsten Sinema could be an even bigger obstacle for Democrats’ spending plans,” Washington Post, September 15, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/sinema-reconciliation-manchin/2021/09/15/8c583f96-162d-11ec-9589-31ac3173c2e5_story.html

Amber Phillips, “How the Senate parliamentarian could make or break Democrats’ spending bill,” Washington Post, September 16, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/09/16/senate-parliamentarian-elizabeth-macdonough-reconciliation/


Donald Trump

Alisha Rahaman Sarkar, “Trump predicts America will cease to exist in three years in rambling Newsmax interview,” Independent, September 15, 2021, https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/trump-sean-spicer-newsmax-america-b1920400.html

Jennifer Rubin, “Milley’s revelation about Trump leaves us with five questions,” Washington Post, September 15, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/09/15/milley-revelation-leaves-us-with-five-questions/

Elise Viebeck and Rosalind S. Helderman, “Pennsylvania GOP lawmakers approve wide-ranging subpoenas for personal information of 2020 voters,” Washington Post, September 16, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/09/15/pennsylvania-gop-election-probe-subpoena-trump/

Karoun Demirjian and John Wagner, “Biden comes to Milley’s defense after revelation top general, fearing Trump, conferred with China to avert war,” Washington Post, September 16, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/milley-defended-china-call/2021/09/15/3393fa18-1645-11ec-b976-f4a43b740aeb_story.html


Roman Catholic Church

Elisabetta Povoledo, Richard Pérez-Peña, and Ruth Graham, “Pope Weighs In on Calls to Deny Communion to Biden Over Abortion,” New York Times, September 15, 2021, https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/15/world/europe/pope-francis-biden-abortion.html


Afghanistan

Shabana Basij-Rasikh, “My father refused to be a refugee. I turned him into one. I’m remembering his garden,” Washington Post, September 16, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/09/16/shabana-basij-rasikh-afghanistan-fathers-garden/


  1. [1]Campbell Robertson, Christopher Mele, and Sabrina Tavernise, “11 Killed in Synagogue Massacre; Suspect Charged With 29 Counts,” New York Times, October 27, 2019, https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/27/us/active-shooter-pittsburgh-synagogue-shooting.html
  2. [2]Ryan Deto, “The FBI declared Pgh. a new hub for white supremacy. That ignores decades of history,” Pennsylvania Capital-Star, November 16, 2020, https://www.penncapital-star.com/civil-rights-social-justice/the-fbi-declared-pgh-a-hub-for-white-supremacy-it-has-a-long-history-already/; Ewan Palmer, “FBI Warn White Supremacist Activity in Pittsburgh Among Highest in Country,” Newsweek, November 13, 2020, https://www.newsweek.com/pittsburgh-white-supremacist-fbi-far-right-1547149
  3. [3]Timothy Bella, “Alabama man dies after being turned away from 43 hospitals as covid packs ICUs, family says,” Washington Post, September 12, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/2021/09/12/alabama-ray-demonia-hospitals-icu/; Rebecca Boone, “COVID-19 surge forces health care rationing in parts of West,” ABC News, September 16, 2021, https://abcnews.go.com/Health/wireStory/idaho-rations-health-care-statewide-covid-surge-continues-80056295; Jenny Deam, “A Boy Went to a COVID-Swamped ER. He Waited for Hours. Then His Appendix Burst,” ProPublica, September 15, 2021, https://www.propublica.org/article/a-boy-went-to-a-covid-swamped-er-he-waited-for-hours-then-his-appendix-burst; Amy Hudak, “Wait times growing at Pittsburgh area hospital emergency rooms,” WPXI, September 16, 2021, https://www.wpxi.com/news/top-stories/pittsburgh-area-hospitals-seeing-longer-wait-times-care/FEH2ZZNSIBF45N37WFRJW7563A/; Betsy Phillips, “I was supposed to have life-saving surgery. Tennessee’s covid-19 surge cost me a hospital bed,” Washington Post, September 14, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/09/14/tennessee-covid-19-surge-hospital-beds-surgery/
  4. [4]Hayley Fowler, “Biden’s COVID vaccine mandate ‘raises more questions than it answers.’ What to know,” Sacramento Bee, September 10, 2021, https://www.sacbee.com/news/coronavirus/article254119523.html; Joan E. Greve and Richard Luscombe, “‘Have at it’: Joe Biden dares vaccine mandate opponents to take him on,” Guardian, September 10, 2021, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/sep/10/joe-biden-vaccine-mandates-coronavirus-covid; Michael Hiltzik, “Here’s why Biden’s vaccine mandate is right — and should stand up to legal challenges,” Los Angeles Times, September 10, 2021, https://www.latimes.com/business/story/2021-09-10/bidens-vaccine-mandate-is-the-right-thing; Annie Linskey et al., “Biden announces sweeping new vaccine mandates for businesses, federal workers,” Washington Post, September 9, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/vaccine-mandate-federal-employees/2021/09/09/1c1ce9dc-116b-11ec-882f-2dd15a067dc4_story.html; Annabelle Timsit, “GOP governors threaten to sue over mandates; Biden says, ‘have at it,’” Washington Post, September 10, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/09/10/republican-governors-sue-biden-vaccine-mandate/

California recall election a replay of Donald Trump’s ‘rigged’ tactic

Donald Trump

This should sound familiar:

The top Republican seeking to replace Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) in Tuesday’s recall declined before the election to say whether he could accept the results. A website affiliated with his campaign invites visitors to “sign a petition to stop the fraud of the California recall election.” And a previous version of the site — published before the election took place — blamed voter fraud for Newsom being “reinstated” as governor.[1]

Even Donald Trump must understand, despite his protestations of a “rigged election,”[2] that is, after the first allegedly “rigged election,” that Gavin Newsom’s overwhelming landslide victory in California’s recall election demonstrates that a significant portion of the U.S. population finds him repulsive. Because it was Trump, and the positions that Trump’s supporters have staked out on a number of issues, but especially the pandemic, really, that Newsom successfully ran against.[3]

I sincerely doubt Trump cares. The narcissist in him will surely drive him to run in 2024, even if Tina Nguyen’s skillful (and cautious) analysis fails to persuade you he might not.[4] If he cared about being divisive, he showed no evidence whatsoever of it in the four years he was in office and surely shows no evidence now as he sets up a campaign rhetoric that will pit his ‘patriotic’ supporters against ‘treasonous’ Democrats.[5] And even if you don’t buy that he’s a narcissist (actually a raging one[6]), there’s that a successful win would help to further stall against the myriad financial and legal problems he faces.[7]

So, yeah, even if Nguyen refuses to say it, barring some catastrophe that takes Trump out of the running, I absolutely think he will run in 2024. Which kinda makes his prediction that “we are not gonna have a country left in three years”[8] interesting. Because something else the pandemic demonstrates beyond doubt, as if the long saga of Trump’s refusal and his supporters’ refusal to admit defeat in 2020 did not already persuade you, is that the epistemological and ethical realms that Trump’s supporters and opponents occupy, cast in the form of a Venn diagram, have the barest if any sliver of overlap.

Alisha Rahaman Sarkar, “Trump predicts America will cease to exist in three years in rambling Newsmax interview,” Independent, September 15, 2021, https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/trump-sean-spicer-newsmax-america-b1920400.html


Elections

Elise Viebeck and Tom Hamburger, “Trump, Elder’s campaign falsely claimed fraud before California votes were counted — a growing GOP tactic,” Washington Post, September 15, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/09/15/trump-elder-california-recall-fraud-newsom/


Pandemic

National

In a previous update, I warned of a massive loophole if religious exemptions were allowed to vaccine mandates.[9] Well, here it is:

A pastor is encouraging people to donate to his Tulsa church so they can become an online member and get his signature on a religious exemption from coronavirus vaccine mandates. The pastor, Jackson Lahmeyer, is a 29-year-old small-business owner running in the Republican primary challenge to Sen. James Lankford in 2022.[10]

Pennsylvania

We’ve had reason to worry about fake vaccination certificates for a while now,[11] and apparently Paula Aceves’ experience in New York City[12] is being replicated in Beaver, northwest of Pittsburgh.[13] A readily verifiable digital vaccine passport is really the only answer.

Julia Felton, “Pa. officials: 94% of covid cases were in unvaccinated or not fully vaccinated people,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 14, 2021, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/pa-officials-94-of-covid-cases-were-in-unvaccinated-or-not-fully-vaccinated-people/

Julia Felton, “Breakthrough covid cases jump in Allegheny County,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 15, 2021, https://triblive.com/local/breakthrough-covid-cases-jump-in-allegheny-county/

Julia Felton, “Feds seize 2 shipments of fake covid vaccination cards in Pittsburgh,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 15, 2021, https://triblive.com/local/regional/officers-seize-2-shipments-of-fake-covid-vaccination-cards-in-pittsburgh/


Infrastructure

Mike DeBonis, “Joe Manchin gets all the attention. But Kyrsten Sinema could be an even bigger obstacle for Democrats’ spending plans,” Washington Post, September 15, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/sinema-reconciliation-manchin/2021/09/15/8c583f96-162d-11ec-9589-31ac3173c2e5_story.html


Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is doubling down on her “tax the rich” hypocrisy, in which she went to a $30,000 (the New York Times says $35,000) per ticket gala wearing a designer dress emblazoned with the words, “tax the rich,”[14] while ignoring a Black Lives Matter protest outside,[15] after having told activists they should “organize,”[16] by selling—you guessed it—clothing with the same message.[17]

What’s next? How far can she sink?

Joe Dwinell, “AOC launches ‘Tax the Rich’ political merchandise off Met Gala 2021 dress controversy,” Boston Herald, September 14, 2021, https://www.bostonherald.com/2021/09/14/aoc-launches-tax-the-rich-political-merchandise-off-dress-controversy/

Shore News Network, “Rebellious AOC Attends $30k Met Gala To Protest The Rich As BLM Protesters Clashed With Police Outside,” September 14, 2021, https://www.shorenewsnetwork.com/2021/09/14/rebellious-aoc-attends-30k-met-gala-to-protest-the-rich-as-blm-protesters-clashed-with-police-outside/

Annie Karni, “A.O.C.’s Met Gala Dress Triggered Strong Reactions,” New York Times, September 15, 2021, https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/15/style/aoc-met-gala-dress.html

Alexandra Villarreal, “‘Medium is the message’: AOC defends ‘tax the rich’ dress worn to Met Gala,” Guardian, September 14, 2021, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/sep/14/aoc-defends-tax-the-rich-dress-met-gala


  1. [1]Elise Viebeck and Tom Hamburger, “Trump, Elder’s campaign falsely claimed fraud before California votes were counted — a growing GOP tactic,” Washington Post, September 15, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/09/15/trump-elder-california-recall-fraud-newsom/
  2. [2]Elise Viebeck and Tom Hamburger, “Trump, Elder’s campaign falsely claimed fraud before California votes were counted — a growing GOP tactic,” Washington Post, September 15, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/09/15/trump-elder-california-recall-fraud-newsom/
  3. [3]Sophia Bollag, “Gavin Newsom used threat of COVID, Larry Elder to defeat recall,” Sacramento Bee, September 15, 2021, https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article254216568.html
  4. [4]Tina Nguyen, “To Be or Not to Be: Trump’s Big 2024 Question,” Puck, September 13, 2021, https://puck.news/trumps-2024-question/
  5. [5]David Benfell, “20/20 hindsight on 9/11,” Not Housebroken, September 13, 2021, https://disunitedstates.org/2021/09/10/20-20-hindsight-on-9-11/
  6. [6]George Simon, “Understanding and Dealing with Narcissistic Rage,” Counselling Resource, July 24, 2017, https://counsellingresource.com/features/2017/07/24/understanding-narcissistic-rage/
  7. [7]Dan Alexander, “Trump Will Have $900 Million Of Loans Coming Due In His Second Term If He’s Reelected,” Forbes, October 19, 2020, https://www.forbes.com/sites/danalexander/2020/10/19/trump-will-have-900-million-of-loans-coming-due-in-his-second-term-if-hes-reelected/; George T. Conway, III, “Donald Trump’s new reality,” Washington Post, January 22, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/01/22/trump-charges-george-conway/; Jane Mayer, “Why Trump Can’t Afford to Lose,” New Yorker, November 1, 2020, https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2020/11/09/why-trump-cant-afford-to-lose; Andrew G. McCabe and David C. Williams, “Trump’s New Criminal Problem,” Politico, January 11, 2021, https://www.politico.com/news/magazine/2021/01/11/trumps-new-criminal-problem-457298
  8. [8]Donald Trump, quoted in Alisha Rahaman Sarkar, “Trump predicts America will cease to exist in three years in rambling Newsmax interview,” Independent, September 15, 2021, https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/trump-sean-spicer-newsmax-america-b1920400.html
  9. [9]David Benfell, “No more excuses. Mandate the vaccine now,” Not Housebroken, September 13, 2021, https://disunitedstates.org/2021/08/22/no-more-excuses-mandate-the-vaccine-now/
  10. [10]Sarah Pulliam Bailey, “This pastor will sign a religious exemption for vaccines if you donate to his church,” Washington Post, September 15, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/religion/2021/09/15/pastor-donate-vaccine-religious-exemption/
  11. [11]Jamie Grierson, “Fake Covid vaccine and test certificate market is growing, researchers say,” Guardian, May 16, 2021, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/may/16/fake-covid-vaccine-and-test-certificate-market-is-growing-researchers-say
  12. [12]Paula Aceves, “The Fake Vaxx Card Next to You,” New York, September 14, 2021, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2021/09/nyc-vaccine-mandate-fake-cards-are-booming.html
  13. [13]Julia Felton, “Feds seize 2 shipments of fake covid vaccination cards in Pittsburgh,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 15, 2021, https://triblive.com/local/regional/officers-seize-2-shipments-of-fake-covid-vaccination-cards-in-pittsburgh/
  14. [14]Annie Karni, “A.O.C.’s Met Gala Dress Triggered Strong Reactions,” New York Times, September 15, 2021, https://www.nytimes.com/2021/09/15/style/aoc-met-gala-dress.html; Alexandra Villarreal, “‘Medium is the message’: AOC defends ‘tax the rich’ dress worn to Met Gala,” Guardian, September 14, 2021, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/sep/14/aoc-defends-tax-the-rich-dress-met-gala
  15. [15]Shore News Network, “Rebellious AOC Attends $30k Met Gala To Protest The Rich As BLM Protesters Clashed With Police Outside,” September 14, 2021, https://www.shorenewsnetwork.com/2021/09/14/rebellious-aoc-attends-30k-met-gala-to-protest-the-rich-as-blm-protesters-clashed-with-police-outside/
  16. [16]Joel Brown, “Rising Democratic Star Ocasio-Cortez Urges Students to Become Activists,” Boston University Today, October 2, 2018, https://www.bu.edu/articles/2018/alexandria-ocasio-cortez/
  17. [17]Joe Dwinell, “AOC launches ‘Tax the Rich’ political merchandise off Met Gala 2021 dress controversy,” Boston Herald, September 14, 2021, https://www.bostonherald.com/2021/09/14/aoc-launches-tax-the-rich-political-merchandise-off-dress-controversy/

I’m pretty sure Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez misunderstands Marshall McLuhan

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

I don’t know that it’s possible to encapsulate my frustration with the two-party system any better than this. Saving for history (screenshot at right):


I don’t really need to say anything more about this, do I?

Alexandra Villarreal, “‘Medium is the message’: AOC defends ‘tax the rich’ dress worn to Met Gala,” Guardian, September 14, 2021, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/sep/14/aoc-defends-tax-the-rich-dress-met-gala


Critical race theory

Melinda D. Anderson, “‘These are the facts’: Black educators silenced from teaching America’s racist past,” Guardian, September 14, 2021, https://www.theguardian.com/education/2021/sep/14/black-us-teachers-critical-race-theory-silenced


Voting rights, apportionment

Speaking of performance, here are the Democrats pretending to care about winning elections:

Yet the new proposal will almost certainly fall well short of the 60 votes needed to break a GOP-led filibuster. Plus Democrats lack the votes to change the rules and weaken the filibuster as many in their party want them to do, meaning the plan is expected to stall when the Senate casts a procedural vote on the matter next week.[1]

Assuming (pretty fucking safely) Joe Manchin fails to find ten Republican votes,[2] the proof will lie in whether they do anything about the filibuster,[3] even as little as Ed Kilgore proposes.[4]

As to the Census, the crucial bit is here:

More evaluations are needed, the task force warns, because its assessment was limited to reviewing how the bureau’s career staffers prepared the congressional apportionment count. The task force’s researchers also inspected certain internal data files about the agency’s operations at the state level, which does not provide a comprehensive picture given that census participation can vary greatly by neighborhood.[5]

The entire controversy over the Census was precisely about participation. Even the citizenship question, ultimately abandoned, was really, whether the Trump administration cared to admit it or not, about whether unauthorized migrants would participate and therefore be counted.[6]

Steve Benen, “As Senate Democrats reach a deal on voting rights, what happens now?” MSNBC, September 14, 2021, https://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow-show/senate-dems-reach-deal-voting-rights-what-happens-now-n1279115

Ed Kilgore, “How a Filibuster Reform for Voting Rights Could Happen,” New York, September 14, 2021, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2021/09/how-a-filibuster-reform-for-voting-rights-could-happen.html

Manu Raju, “Democrats cut deal with Manchin to get party behind long-shot voting overhaul bill,” CNN, September 14, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/09/14/politics/democrats-manchin-voting-overhaul-bill/index.html

Hansi Lo Wang, “An Independent Review Of The 1st 2020 Census Results Found No Major Irregularities,” National Public Radio, September 14, 2021, https://www.npr.org/2021/09/14/1035449920/2020-census-results-by-state-data-accuracy-quality-metrics-apportionment


Pandemic

Economy

This, in a pandemic:

The annual findings also showed the proportion of Americans without health coverage rose slightly in 2020, marking the fourth year in a row that the ranks of the uninsured swelled.[7]

Heather Long and Amy Goldstein, “Poverty fell overall in 2020 due to massive stimulus checks and unemployment aid, U.S. Census says,” Washington Post, September 14, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2021/09/14/us-census-poverty-health-insurance-2020/

National

Paula Aceves, “The Fake Vaxx Card Next to You,” New York, September 14, 2021, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2021/09/nyc-vaccine-mandate-fake-cards-are-booming.html


Donald Trump

2024

Tina Nguyen is probably wiser than I am. She refuses to predict whether Donald Trump will run in 2024.[8] But I read her article and I think he can’t resist.

Tina Nguyen, “To Be or Not to Be: Trump’s Big 2024 Question,” Puck, September 13, 2021, https://puck.news/trumps-2024-question/


  1. [1]Manu Raju, “Democrats cut deal with Manchin to get party behind long-shot voting overhaul bill,” CNN, September 14, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/09/14/politics/democrats-manchin-voting-overhaul-bill/index.html
  2. [2]Steve Benen, “As Senate Democrats reach a deal on voting rights, what happens now?” MSNBC, September 14, 2021, https://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow-show/senate-dems-reach-deal-voting-rights-what-happens-now-n1279115
  3. [3]Steve Benen, “As Senate Democrats reach a deal on voting rights, what happens now?” MSNBC, September 14, 2021, https://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow-show/senate-dems-reach-deal-voting-rights-what-happens-now-n1279115; Ed Kilgore, “How a Filibuster Reform for Voting Rights Could Happen,” New York, September 14, 2021, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2021/09/how-a-filibuster-reform-for-voting-rights-could-happen.html
  4. [4]Ed Kilgore, “How a Filibuster Reform for Voting Rights Could Happen,” New York, September 14, 2021, https://nymag.com/intelligencer/2021/09/how-a-filibuster-reform-for-voting-rights-could-happen.html
  5. [5]Hansi Lo Wang, “An Independent Review Of The 1st 2020 Census Results Found No Major Irregularities,” National Public Radio, September 14, 2021, https://www.npr.org/2021/09/14/1035449920/2020-census-results-by-state-data-accuracy-quality-metrics-apportionment
  6. [6]Avery Anapol, “Judge orders Trump admin to explain how it decided to add citizenship question to census,” Hill, July 3, 2018, http://thehill.com/regulation/court-battles/395400-federal-judge-says-trump-admin-acted-in-bad-faith-with-citizenship; Tara Bahrampour and Robert Barnes, “Despite Trump administration denials, new evidence suggests census citizenship question was crafted to benefit white Republicans,” Washington Post, May 30, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/social-issues/despite-trump-administration-denials-new-evidence-suggests-census-citizenship-question-was-crafted-to-benefit-white-republicans/2019/05/30/ca188dea-82eb-11e9-933d-7501070ee669_story.html; Tara Bahrampour et al., “Trump administration scrambles to save citizenship question on census,” Washington Post, July 4, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-administration-scrambles-to-save-citizenship-question-on-census/2019/07/04/238fe3fa-9e85-11e9-9ed4-c9089972ad5a_story.html; Tara Bahrampour and John Wagner, “Government lawyers step up effort to get a citizenship question on 2020 Census, court filing shows, ” Washington Post, July 5, 2019, source; Tara Bahrampour, Matt Zapotosky, and Josh Dawsey, “Reversing course, Trump administration will look for a way to add citizenship question to 2020 Census,” Washington Post, July 3, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-appears-to-contradict-his-own-administration-on-census-citizenship-question/2019/07/03/b720bb94-9da4-11e9-b27f-ed2942f73d70_story.html; Robert Barnes, “On Census citizenship question, Supreme Court’s conservatives appear to be united,” Boston Globe, April 23, 2019, https://www2.bostonglobe.com/news/nation/2019/04/23/census-citizenship-question-supreme-court-conservatives-appear-united/tB1KUI3oACQAIAjQxVyXRL/story.html; Noah Bierman and David G. Savage, “Trump administration abruptly gives up fight over citizenship question on the census,” Los Angeles Times, July 2, 2019, https://www.latimes.com/politics/la-na-pol-census-trump-citizenship-20190702-story.html; Noah Bierman and David G. Savage, “Citizen question may be back on 2020 census as Trump administration reverses course again,” Los Angeles Times, July 3, 2019, https://www.latimes.com/politics/la-na-pol-trump-census-immigration-tweet-supreme-court-20190703-story.html; Aaron Blake, “Trump just admitted something he probably shouldn’t have about the census citizenship question,” Washington Post, July 5, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2019/07/05/trump-just-admitted-something-he-probably-shouldnt-have-about-census-citizenship-question/; Aaron Blake, “The Justice Department just pulled its lawyers from the census case. That could signal something ugly ahead,” Washington Post, July 8, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2019/07/08/justice-department-just-pulled-its-lawyers-census-case-that-could-signal-something-ugly-ahead/; Mike DeBonis, “Stepping up Trump clash, House votes to enforce Barr and McGahn subpoenas,” Washington Post, June 11, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/stepping-up-trump-clash-house-to-vote-to-enforce-barr-and-mcgahn-subpoenas/2019/06/11/a1343cea-8c4f-11e9-b6f4-033356502dce_story.html; Garrett Epps, “Is the Citizenship Question Dead?” Atlantic, June 27, 2019, https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/06/court-wants-real-reason-citizenship-question/592864/; Garrett Epps, “The Census Case Could Provoke a Constitutional Crisis,” Atlantic, July 8, 2019, https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/07/census-case-could-provoke-constitutional-crisis/593425/; Josh Gerstein, “Justice Department replaces attorneys in census citizenship-question battle,” Politico, July 8, 2019, https://www.politico.com/story/2019/07/08/justice-department-census-citizenship-question-battle-1399523; Ted Hesson and Josh Gerstein, “Why Trump will likely lose the census citizenship fight,” Politico, July 8, 2019, https://www.politico.com/story/2019/07/08/trump-census-citizenship-2020-1573574; Lawrence Hurley and Andrew Chung, “Trump fumes as Supreme Court blocks census citizenship question,” Reuters, June 27, 2019, https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-court-census/trump-fumes-as-supreme-court-blocks-census-citizenship-question-idUSKCN1TS1BL; Seung Min Kim, Tara Bahrampour, and John Wagner, “Trump retreats on adding citizenship question to 2020 Census,” Washington Post, July 11, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-to-hold-news-conference-on-census-as-he-mulls-executive-action-to-add-a-citizenship-question/2019/07/11/c0eb7cb6-a3c8-11e9-b8c8-75dae2607e60_story.html; Ann E. Marimow, Matt Zapotosky, and Tara Bahrampour, “2020 Census will not include citizenship question, Justice Department confirms,” Washington Post, July 2, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/social-issues/2020-census-will-not-include-citizenship-question-doj-confirms/2019/07/02/0067be4a-9c44-11e9-9ed4-c9089972ad5a_story.html; J. M. Rieger, “The Trump administration has changed its story on the census citizenship question at least 10 times in four months,” Washington Post, July 8, 2019, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2019/07/08/trump-administration-has-changed-its-story-census-citizenship-question-least-times-four-months/; Jessica Schneider, “Federal judge permanently blocks Trump admin from adding citizenship question to 2020 census,” CNN, July 16, 2019, https://www.cnn.com/2019/07/16/politics/judge-permanently-blocks-citizenship-question-2020-census/index.html; Jessica Schneider, “2nd federal judge blocks Trump admin from adding citizenship question to census,” CNN, July 17, 2019, https://www.cnn.com/2019/07/17/politics/2020-census-citizenship/index.html; Ariane de Vogue and Maegan Vazquez, “Trump faces ‘limited paths forward’ on census citizenship question,” CNN, July 4, 2019, https://www.cnn.com/2019/07/04/politics/census-path-forward-white-house/index.html; Eugene Volokh, “Is the Government Required to Count the Number of Citizens in Each State?” Reason, April 25, 2019, https://reason.com/2019/04/25/is-the-government-required-to-count-the-number-of-citizens-in-each-state/; Hansi Lo Wang, “Trump Administration’s Census Citizenship Question Plans Halted By 3rd Judge,” National Public Radio, April 5, 2019, https://www.npr.org/2019/04/05/700982993/trump-administrations-census-citizenship-question-plans-halted-by-third-judge; Michael Wines, “Reopened Legal Challenge to Census Citizenship Question Throws Case Into Chaos,” New York Times, June 25, 2019, https://www.nytimes.com/2019/06/25/us/census-citizenship-question.html; Matt Zapotosky and John Wagner, “Trump asserts executive privilege to shield documents on census citizenship question,” Washington Post, June 12, 2019, copy in possession of author
  7. [7]Heather Long and Amy Goldstein, “Poverty fell overall in 2020 due to massive stimulus checks and unemployment aid, U.S. Census says,” Washington Post, September 14, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2021/09/14/us-census-poverty-health-insurance-2020/
  8. [8]Tina Nguyen, “To Be or Not to Be: Trump’s Big 2024 Question,” Puck, September 13, 2021, https://puck.news/trumps-2024-question/

The autumn of our discontent

Today, I feel I’ve turned a corner with this protracted move (I have two months of overlap—still a month and a half—between the old and new apartments) into a much smaller apartment, albeit in a much safer neighborhood.

I finally got correctly sized blackout curtains for my bedroom. I have a shower caddy that looks like it will actually work (the one from my old apartment didn’t). And perhaps most important of all, I bought a stud finder so I could properly hang my Ph.D. diploma.

Fortunately, there was a well placed stud so my diploma hangs nicely centered on a north-facing wall in the front room between the entry way to the kitchen and a bookshelf.

The other day, I began unpacking books. At this writing, I’m half way through. Oh yeah, try not to roll your eyes too hard: I’m still hoping I might actually be able to find books I’m looking for with this organization.


Abortion

Charlie Mitchell, “Texas abortion ban: Salesforce helps staff leave state,” Times, September 13, 2021, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/tech-company-helps-its-staff-quit-texas-over-abortion-ban-mrcvljxv3


Pandemic

National

A Washington Post article on Joe Biden’s defiance of Republican governors’ lawsuit threats[1] covers little new ground in itself, but it does point to a month-old article in Lawfare in which the authors suspect “religious exemptions may well be constitutionally required under a future Supreme Court ruling.”[2]

In practice, this is likely to be a massive loophole. One thing Donald Trump did was to effectively unify[3] the authoritarian populist, social conservative, and paleoconservative tendencies of conservatism I identified in my dissertation,[4] erasing, as near as I can tell, the already-fuzzy distinctions between them. A great many pastors in evangelical Protestant churches have already offered faith in preference and opposition to medical mitigation measures. Capitalist libertarians who prize individualist ‘freedom’ even when it endangers others will likely think themselves clever—expect membership in the Universal Life Church and similar organizations to skyrocket—for exploiting this loophole. Traditionalist conservatives will likely find anti-vaccination bishops.

All pastors will have to do is to declare the vaccines un-Christian or blasphemous and their entire congregations will be exempt.

I do not know how many conservatives will avail themselves of such an exemption and, with ludicrously low response rates[5] and ongoing failures,[6] I distrust the methodology for determining this. But we can expect that a significant portion of Trump’s base to do so, possibly preventing the U.S. from vaccinating a sufficient proportion of the population to achieve ‘herd immunity.’


Autumn

It’s a funny thing about Julia Felton’s article.[7] Early in August, I had started noticing the first early tinges of autumn. Just yesterday, I was noticing some trees definitely turning. And, to be fair, we did have some relatively cool temperatures a few days ago. But today and yesterday have felt warm enough again that I’ve turned on the air conditioner when I got home.

Julia Felton, “No fall yet: Warm temperatures persist in Western Pa.,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 13, 2021, https://triblive.com/local/regional/no-fall-yet-warm-temperatures-persist-in-western-pa/

Harrisburg Patriot-News, “Forecast: Pennsylvania’s fall foliage expected to bring vibrant colors in 2021,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 13, 2021, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/forecast-pennsylvanias-fall-foliage-expected-to-bring-vibrant-colors-in-2021/


  1. [1]Annabelle Timsit, “GOP governors threaten to sue over mandates; Biden says, ‘have at it,’” Washington Post, September 10, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2021/09/10/republican-governors-sue-biden-vaccine-mandate/
  2. [2]Lindsay F. Wiley and Steve Vladeck, “Why Carefully Designed Public Vaccination Mandates Can—and Should—Withstand Constitutional Challenge,” Lawfare, August 12, 2021, https://www.lawfareblog.com/Designed-Public-Vaccination-Mandates
  3. [3]David Benfell, “The seven tendencies of conservatism,” Irregular Bullshit, n.d., https://disunitedstates.com/the-seven-tendencies-of-conservatism/
  4. [4]David Benfell, “Conservative Views on Undocumented Migration” (doctoral dissertation, Saybrook, 2016). ProQuest (1765416126).
  5. [5]Courtney Kennedy and Hannah Hartig, “Response rates in telephone surveys have resumed their decline,” Pew Research Center, February 27, 2019, https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2019/02/27/response-rates-in-telephone-surveys-have-resumed-their-decline/
  6. [6]Dan Balz, “2020 presidential polls suffered worst performance in decades, report says,” Washington Post, July 18, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/2020-poll-errors/2021/07/18/8d6a9838-e7df-11eb-ba5d-55d3b5ffcaf1_story.html; David Byler, “Polling is broken. No one knows how to fix it,” Washington Post, July 22, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/07/22/polling-is-broken-no-one-knows-how-fix-it/; Mona Chalabi, “The pollsters were wrong – again. Here’s what we know so far,” Guardian, November 4, 2020, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/commentisfree/2020/nov/04/the-pollsters-were-wrong-again-heres-what-we-know-so-far; David A. Graham, “The Polling Crisis Is a Catastrophe for American Democracy,” Atlantic, November 4, 2020, https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2020/11/polling-catastrophe/616986/; Steven Shepard, “Dem pollsters acknowledge ‘major errors’ in 2020 polling,” Politico, April 13, 2021, https://www.politico.com/news/2021/04/13/dems-polling-failure-481044
  7. [7]Julia Felton, “No fall yet: Warm temperatures persist in Western Pa.,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 13, 2021, https://triblive.com/local/regional/no-fall-yet-warm-temperatures-persist-in-western-pa/

Predicting Donald Trump’s 2024 campaign

Democrats

There is a new blog post entitled, “California omens and Washington gridlock.”

Maria L. La Ganga, “Democrats fight California recall but say party must do better: ‘Don’t just sit there,’” Los Angeles Times, September 11, 2021, https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2021-09-11/voters-to-democrats-listen-up-do-better-job-next-time-around


Infrastructure

Tony Romm, “Sens. Manchin and Sanders square off as Democrats clash over $3.5 trillion economic package,” Washington Post, September 12, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/us-policy/2021/09/12/manchin-sanders-reconciliation/


Pandemic

Pennsylvania

Jamie Martines and Angie Couloumbis, “Pa. school mask lawsuit backed by group that challenged 2020 election results,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 12, 2021, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/pa-school-mask-lawsuit-backed-by-group-that-challenged-2020-election-results/


Donald Trump

Reportedly, Donald Trump visited the the New York Police Department and the New York Fire Department, departments that suffered heavy losses in the 9/11 attacks, yesterday (September 11th) on the 20th anniversary of those attacks.[1] This, in combination with a Republican decision to criticize Joe Biden for Trump’s decision to withdraw from Afghanistan,[2] makes a partial outline of a Trump campaign for a return to the presidency in 2024 apparent.

Trump will likely rewrite the history of the Afghanistan war in a way similar to the right-wing rewriting of the war in Vietnam, in which the (brutal) U.S. conduct of the war was whitewashed; it was alleged that the U.S. ‘lost’ the Vietnam War because we had allegedly not fought to win and that the consequent humiliation of ‘defeat’ constitutes a form of treason and a betrayal of those (nonexistent) prisoners of war and missing in action we (had not) left behind;[3] and finally a ‘Vietnam Syndrome’ was invented to explain how the U.S. allegedly, but not really, became reluctant to deploy its military forces in the wake of that defeat.[4] The chaos of the evacuation from Kabul[5] will be compared to that from Saigon.[6]

It will be a nationalistic appeal to ‘patriotic’ Amerikkkans, reassuring them of U.S. claims to righteousness, but of course, only if the Democrats are defeated. It will all be lies—as if we should expect anything else. And, at this moment, I don’t expect it to work among voters outside Trump’s base. But time will tell.

WLNY, “Former President Donald Trump Visits NYPD, FDNY On 9/11,” September 12, 2021, https://newyork.cbslocal.com/2021/09/12/donald-trump-9-11-nypd-fdny-visit/


  1. [1]WLNY, “Former President Donald Trump Visits NYPD, FDNY On 9/11,” September 12, 2021, https://newyork.cbslocal.com/2021/09/12/donald-trump-9-11-nypd-fdny-visit/
  2. [2]Karoun Demirjian, “Republicans say Biden’s Afghanistan withdrawal plan is ‘dumber than dirt,’” Washington Post, April 13, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/national-security/republicans-afghanistan-biden/2021/04/13/7167a2f8-9c84-11eb-b7a8-014b14aeb9e4_story.html
  3. [3]Rick Perlstein, Invisible Bridge (New York: Simon and Schuster, 2014).
  4. [4]The U.S. has had military forces deployed in some sort of killing expedition in every calendar year since 1941: David Benfell, “Us-wars,” Google Drive, September 12, 2021, https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1bdIfIobiH1A7NZItE3FUI6zy0oh-D6eCK64t__5wBO4/edit?usp=sharing
  5. [5]Larisa Brown et al., “Planes leaving half empty after Taliban set up ring of steel,” Times, August 19, 2021, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/planes-leaving-half-empty-after-taliban-set-up-ring-of-steel-6rdvp2wdb; Naomi Conrad, Masood Saifullah, and Birgitta Schülke-Gill, “In Kabul, terrified Afghans wait for the call to safety,” Deutschewelle, August 18, 2021, https://www.dw.com/en/in-kabul-terrified-afghans-wait-for-the-call-to-safety/a-58894365; Ben Doherty, Warren Murray, and agencies, “Afghanistan: reports emerge of Taliban beating Afghans seeking to flee Kabul,” Guardian, August 18, 2021, https://www.theguardian.com/world/2021/aug/18/afghanistan-reports-emerge-of-taliban-beating-afghans-seeking-to-flee-kabul; Charlie Faulkner and Ben Farmer, “Desperate Afghans plunge to deaths from departing US planes as Kabul airport overrun,” Telegraph, August 16, 2021, https://www.telegraph.co.uk/world-news/2021/08/16/kabul-airport-chaos-thousands-overrun-tarmac-desperate-bid-escape/; Sayed Ziarmal Hashemi et al., “U.S. presses on with evacuations despite fears of more attacks,” Los Angeles Times, August 27, 2021, https://www.latimes.com/world-nation/story/2021-08-27/evacuations-resume-after-kabul-airport-attack-bombings; Ellen Knickmeyer, Robert Burns, and Matthew Lee, “Biden to address chaotic Kabul evacuation amid criticism,” Associated Press, August 20, 2021, https://apnews.com/article/business-health-coronavirus-pandemic-kabul-taliban-d036db0b190acba68087f3d46ffae146; Kevin Liptak, “Biden decides to keep August 31 deadline to withdraw from Afghanistan as evacuations accelerate,” CNN, August 24, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/08/24/politics/joe-biden-g7-afghanistan/index.html; Ezzatullah Mehrdad, Dan Lamothe, and Kareem Fahim, “Chaos persists at Kabul airport, imperiling Afghanistan evacuation effort,” Washington Post, August 19, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/airport-kabul-taliban-state-department-karzai/2021/08/19/5de79f4a-0105-11ec-87e0-7e07bd9ce270_story.html; Rachel Pannett et al., “Last U.S. military flight leaves Kabul; Biden to address nation Tuesday,” Washington Post, August 30, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/2021/08/30/afghanistan-kabul-taliban-live-updates/; Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, “U.S. Airlift From Kabul Gains Speed As Afghans Defy Taliban In Several Cities,” August 19, 2021, https://gandhara.rferl.org/a/taliban-blocking-airport-independence-day/31418029.html; Tim Shipman, “Tony Blair attacks Joe Biden’s ‘imbecilic’ Afghanistan retreat as Kabul chaos deepens,” Times, August 22, 2021, https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/tony-blair-attacks-joe-bidens-imbecilic-afghanistan-retreat-as-kabul-chaos-deepens-jw782ghxr; Barbara Starr et al., “ISIS terror threat forces US military to establish alternate routes to Kabul airport,” CNN, August 21, 2021, https://www.cnn.com/2021/08/21/politics/kabul-airport-terror-warning/index.html; Yaroslav Trofimov, “Afghanistan’s Taliban Seize Jalalabad as Panic Grips Kabul,” Wall Street Journal, August 15, 2021, https://www.wsj.com/articles/afghanistans-taliban-seize-jalalabad-as-panic-grips-kabul-11629005282; Yaroslav Trofimov, Dion Nissenbaum, and Margherita Stancati, “‘Saigon on Steroids’: The Desperate Rush to Flee Afghanistan,” Wall Street Journal, August 15, 2021, https://www.wsj.com/articles/saigon-on-steroids-the-desperate-rush-to-flee-afghanistan-11629071999; Yaroslav Trofimov, Nancy A. Youssef, and Sune Engel Rasmussen, “Kabul Airport Attack Kills 13 U.S. Service Members, at Least 90 Afghans,” Wall Street Journal, August 26, 2021, https://www.wsj.com/articles/afghanistan-kabul-airport-explosion-11629976397
  6. [6]Rick Perlstein, Invisible Bridge (New York: Simon and Schuster, 2014).

The Donald Trump rule: Only Republican votes may count

There is a new blog post entitled, “20/20 hindsight on 9/11.”


Donald Trump

Associated Press, “Republicans start election ‘investigation’ in Pennsylvania,” Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, September 9, 2021, https://triblive.com/news/pennsylvania/republicans-start-election-investigation-in-pennsylvania/

Andrew Seidman and Jonathan Lai, “Pa. Republicans started their ‘forensic investigation’ of the 2020 election. It’s still unclear what that means,” Philadelphia Inquirer, September 9, 2021, https://www.inquirer.com/politics/pennsylvania/pennsylvania-republicans-2020-election-audit-20210909.html


Voting rights

The Republican efforts to disenfranchise voters, framed as supposedly ensuring election integrity, and rationalized as any defeat being “proof” of a “rigged election,” remind me of an apparent paleoconservative belief that on some level all white people must actually agree with them, they must all somehow feel threatened by Black and ‘brown’ people, and that any who express disagreement are under some inappropriate influence to be utterly disparaged. That any white people might truly dissent is entirely inconceivable to them.

So it is with Republicans and voting: If you disagree with “us,” you can’t be a “real Amerikkkan,” therefore you cannot be a legal voter and your vote cannot be legitimate. As Kim Messick explained years ago,

the Republican Party’s extremism can be traced to its increased dependence on an electorate that is largely rural, Southern and white. These voters, who figure prominently in the Tea Party, often decline to interpret political conflict as a struggle among interest groups or a good-faith clash of opinion. Instead, they tend to identify the country as a whole with an idealized version of themselves, and to equate any dissent from their values with disloyalty by alien, “un-American” forces. This paranoid vision of politics, I argued, makes them seek out opportunities for dramatic conflict and to shun negotiation and compromise.[1]

There’s some irony here. So-called “socialist” or “communist” regimes were notorious for election results in which ludicrously high proportions of the electorate supported the Communist Party. Republicans who decry “socialism” and who won’t even utter the word communism seemingly expect just these sorts of results in their own favor. Dissent is inconceivable and can’t possibly be legitimate.

Paige St. John, “Election watchers snap photos of workers, challenge voter signatures as recall nears,” Los Angeles Times, September 10, 2021, https://www.latimes.com/california/story/2021-09-10/election-chiefs-wary-of-california-recall-vote-fraud-claims


Pandemic

National

I don’t see how you argue against the necessity[2] for Joe Biden’s vaccine mandate.[3]

But the follow-on question is whether it’ll stand up in court. At the Los Angeles Times, Michael Hiltzik points to U.S. Supreme Court precedent, suggesting Biden is on ludicrously solid ground.[4] And indeed, he projects confidence.[5] The trouble, according to Hayley Fowler at the Sacramento Bee, is that it might not be so simple.[6] We do, after all, have an especially capricious Supreme Court.

Sharon Lerner, Mara Hvistendahl, and Maia Hibbett, “NIH Documents Provide New Evidence U.S. Funded Gain-of-Function Research in Wuhan,” Intercept, September 9, 2021, https://theintercept.com/2021/09/09/covid-origins-gain-of-function-research/

Annie Linskey et al., “Biden announces sweeping new vaccine mandates for businesses, federal workers,” Washington Post, September 9, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/vaccine-mandate-federal-employees/2021/09/09/1c1ce9dc-116b-11ec-882f-2dd15a067dc4_story.html

Eileen Drage O’Reilly, “Monster risk: Fauci says COVID cases 10x too high,” Axios, September 9, 2021, https://www.axios.com/fauci-no-control-covid-a2572210-dbdb-48b0-aa2e-92e8e9fcd69a.html

Hayley Fowler, “Biden’s COVID vaccine mandate ‘raises more questions than it answers.’ What to know,” Sacramento Bee, September 10, 2021, https://www.sacbee.com/news/coronavirus/article254119523.html

Joan E. Greve and Richard Luscombe, “‘Have at it’: Joe Biden dares vaccine mandate opponents to take him on,” Guardian, September 10, 2021, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/sep/10/joe-biden-vaccine-mandates-coronavirus-covid

Michael Hiltzik, “Here’s why Biden’s vaccine mandate is right — and should stand up to legal challenges,” Los Angeles Times, September 10, 2021, https://www.latimes.com/business/story/2021-09-10/bidens-vaccine-mandate-is-the-right-thing

Lena H. Sun and Joel Achenbach, “Unvaccinated people were 11 times more likely to die of covid-19, CDC report finds,” Washington Post, September 10, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/2021/09/10/moderna-most-effective-covid-vaccine-studies/


Abortion

Devlin Barrett and Ann E. Marimow, “Justice Department sues Texas to block six-week abortion ban,” Washington Post, September 9, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/courts_law/texas-abortion-justice-lawsuit/2021/09/09/5d3eae0a-117a-11ec-9cb6-bf9351a25799_story.html


Climate crisis

George Monbiot, “Earth’s tipping points could be closer than we think. Our current plans won’t work,” Guardian, September 9, 2021, https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2021/sep/09/earths-tipping-points-closer-current-climate-plans-wont-work-global-heating


White supremacist gangs

Rashawn Ray, “How 9/11 helped to militarize American law enforcement,” Brookings, September 9, 2021, https://www.brookings.edu/blog/how-we-rise/2021/09/09/how-9-11-helped-to-militarize-american-law-enforcement/


Computer chips

I wish I had ordered my new car last year. I’m glad I didn’t wait any longer than I did. Because this is looking awful.

Hans Greimel and Naoto Okamura, “Toyota cuts output again on shortage of chips, parts,” Automotive News Europe, September 10, 2021, https://europe.autonews.com/automakers/toyota-cuts-output-again-shortage-chips-parts


  1. [1]Kim Messick, “Modern GOP is still the party of Dixie,” Salon, October 12, 2013, https://www.salon.com/2013/10/12/modern_gop_is_still_the_party_of_dixie/
  2. [2]Eileen Drage O’Reilly, “Monster risk: Fauci says COVID cases 10x too high,” Axios, September 9, 2021, https://www.axios.com/fauci-no-control-covid-a2572210-dbdb-48b0-aa2e-92e8e9fcd69a.html; Lena H. Sun and Joel Achenbach, “Unvaccinated people were 11 times more likely to die of covid-19, CDC report finds,” Washington Post, September 10, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/2021/09/10/moderna-most-effective-covid-vaccine-studies/
  3. [3]Annie Linskey et al., “Biden announces sweeping new vaccine mandates for businesses, federal workers,” Washington Post, September 9, 2021, https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/vaccine-mandate-federal-employees/2021/09/09/1c1ce9dc-116b-11ec-882f-2dd15a067dc4_story.html
  4. [4]Michael Hiltzik, “Here’s why Biden’s vaccine mandate is right — and should stand up to legal challenges,” Los Angeles Times, September 10, 2021, https://www.latimes.com/business/story/2021-09-10/bidens-vaccine-mandate-is-the-right-thing
  5. [5]Joan E. Greve and Richard Luscombe, “‘Have at it’: Joe Biden dares vaccine mandate opponents to take him on,” Guardian, September 10, 2021, https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/sep/10/joe-biden-vaccine-mandates-coronavirus-covid
  6. [6]Hayley Fowler, “Biden’s COVID vaccine mandate ‘raises more questions than it answers.’ What to know,” Sacramento Bee, September 10, 2021, https://www.sacbee.com/news/coronavirus/article254119523.html