So, Facebook’s behavior is a symptom of alienation, and it shouldn’t be any kind of “jaw-dropping” surprise.
The Delta variant has created chaos across the country during the month of August. And the virus has been particularly devastating in the Southern part of the United States. People in this deeply red area have refused to get the vaccine in high numbers.
Florida has become on of the global epicenters of the pandemic. And governor Ron DeSantis seems to be unwilling to do anything about it. The doctors and nurses, however, are fed up with treating the unvaccinated.
During a recent appearance on CNN, Florida ICU Doctor Ahmed Alhaddad told Pamela Brown, “We’re frustrated because we’re tired of seeing people die and suffer because they did not take a vaccine. The vaccine has been available since December 14th. And it’s readily available. Over 350 million doses have been given in the United States. And we’re tired of telling the families that their loved ones are not going to make it.”
Florida ICU Director: We're Tired of Seeing People Die Because They Refused to Take the Vaccine pic.twitter.com/x0UxiLxeWR
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) August 29, 2021
Today, 12 Marines were killed by an ISIS suicide bomber in Afghanistan. Republicans almost immediately went on the attack against the Biden administration. Spineless Missouri lawmaker Josh Hawley even called on the president to resign.
But after Donald Trump made his deal with the Taliban, Phil Mudd told Jake Tapper on Thursday, there weren’t really any better options.
The former CIA agent said on CNN:
“Let’s look at characteristics. The Americans say they are going to get out. Could you have bombed American military posts before you got out to ensure that the Taliban couldn’t access weapons a explosives. The Taliban then knows you’re leaving. The Taliban going to surge if they see that you’re leaving. That happened in this circumstance. The Afghan National Army is going to see you’re leaving. They are going to fold. As soon as you start leaving the airport American citizens and people affiliated with the Americans are going to surge the airport because they know their throats are going to get slit by the Taliban. That’s what happening in this circumstance and the biggest question, Jake, you can surge in the American military to get aircraft to take people out and there’s a big footprint and you tell me whether you like Obama or Trump or Biden. You give me a better plan, I don’t see it, Jake.”
A large majority of Americans on both sides of the aisle wanted to military out of Afghanistan. A poll taken this Spring showed that nearly 70% of respondents supported an end to the war.
So Joe Biden, for that reason and others, went ahead and did it. And the president has taken blowback from of course, Conservative news sources, but Liberal news sources as well.
The tune, though, seems to be changing over the last few days as the Biden administration is getting thousands of people out of Afghanistan. During an interview with CNN on Tuesday, Matthew Dowd said that Joe Biden has done a great job with the situation and deserves to be congratulated.
The former George W. Bush campaign strategist told Kate Bolduan, “as you probably are aware, I have a lauded the president from the very beginning about Afghanistan. He was dealt a horrible situation and as of today, he’s done an extremely good job in the situation. There were many people over the last seven days that said there is no possible way he could get 50,000 people out. No possible way and that was the number of people thought had to get out. He’s got 70,000 people in the last eight days.”
Former GWB Campaign Chief Matthew Dowd: Joe Biden Has Done an Extremely Good Job on Afghanistan and Deserves to Be Congratulated pic.twitter.com/sGQQhgkAiz
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) August 25, 2021
Ted Cruz has spent much of the last year as a walking punch line. You would never know it from his Twitter feed, though. The Texas senator frequently and without a sense of irony bashes other law makers and media personalities.
He tried to do this on Monday, ripping into CNN’s Clarissa Ward for reporting from Kabul in a burka. The Twitter feed for CNN was quick to tear him up over it.
Conservative conspiracy theorist Jake Posobiec tweeted a video of Ward reporting and wrote, “‘They’re chanting Death to America, but they seem friendly at the same time.'”
Is there an enemy of America for whom @CNN WON’T cheerlead?
(In mandatory burkas, no less.) https://t.co/9O6pe8yROM
— Ted Cruz (@tedcruz) August 16, 2021
Cruz retweeted the message, writing, “Is there an enemy of America for whom CNN WON’T cheerlead? (In mandatory burkas, no less.)”
CNN responded to the remark, “Rather than running off to Cancun in tough times, Clarissa Ward is risking her life to tell the world what’s happening. That’s called bravery. Instead of RTing a conspiracy theorist’s misleading soundbite, perhaps your time would be better spent helping Americans in harm’s way.”
Rather than running off to Cancun in tough times, @clarissaward is risking her life to tell the world what's happening. That’s called bravery. Instead of RTing a conspiracy theorist’s misleading soundbite, perhaps your time would be better spent helping Americans in harm’s way.
With the delta variant surging in red states, Republicans don’t seem all that interested in combating the virus. Rand Paul recently promised to fight any precautions meant to limit spread. And Ron DeSantis is more interested in banning masks than stopping Florida’s growing COVID problem.
Marjorie Taylor Greene recently took it a step farther, celebrating Alabama’s low COVID vaccination rate. CNN’s Pamela Brown discussed the moment during a Monday show.
The host asked Dr. Ashish Jha, “But you have all this good information that you’re trying to put out there and other doctors against bad information coming from politicians like Marjorie Taylor Greene. You just saw congresswoman Greene congratulating an Alabama crowd on its low vaccination rate. From a medical perspective, how dangerous is it to be sending that message about a vaccine that could end this pandemic?”
Dr. Ashish Jah rips into Marjorie Taylor Greene and other politicians pushing COVID disinformation. pic.twitter.com/cwtkKRSQld
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) August 9, 2021
Since Donald Trump has been out of office, a number of books have been written about his tenure. And while most rational people expected that the former president would have been incompetent and corrupt, the picture being painted is even worse.
One might think that it would be important to call Trump to testify in front of congress. Jim Acosta doesn’t think so, though. In fact, the CNN host says, the constant lies from the former commander in chief would render the hearings useless.
Lofgren told the CNN host, “I don’t think it’s a new piece of information that the former president has a veracity problem. The Washington Post
and other news institutions used to tote up how many lies per day he would say. So, we’ve got to weigh that as a factor of how valuable his testimony would be.”
Amazingly enough, scientists were able to create a vaccine to combat the COVID-19 pandemic within a year. And 70% of Americans have received at least one of their shots.
But there is a large group of people who have chosen not to get inoculated. Vaccinations have become a culture war issue with many in right wing media urging hesitancy against the shot.
Consequences are coming for those who choose not to protect themselves and others. In some instances, it might cost them their jobs. CNN’s chief Jeff Zucker recently fired three employees who wouldn’t get vaxed.
An internal email sent by Zucker read:
“Thus far, we have left proof of vaccination to an honor system. While we have asked for attestation to your status via Passcard, it has not be mandatory to produce a vaccine card. In the past week, we have been made aware of three employees who were coming to the office unvaccinated. All three have been terminated. Let me be clear — we have a zero tolerance policy on this. You need to be vaccinated to come to the office. And you need to be vaccinated to work in the field, with other employees, regardless of whether you enter an office or not. Period. We expect that in the weeks ahead, showing proof of vaccination may become a formal part of the WarnerMedia Passcard process. Regardless, our expectations remain in place.”
It was pretty clear for months before the 2020 election that Donald Trump never planned on winning office. Win or lose, the former president was going to stay in office.
Luckily, there were people within the administration willing to stand up to him, even if they didn’t do it publicly. In addition, the people working for Trump were completely incompetent.
News of an attempted coup by Trump circulated over the last week. During a Thursday night segment, Erin Burnett laid out just how pathetic the attempt was.
The CNN host began, “
December 28th. Jeffrey Clark, a Trump loyalist who works at the Justice Department, circulates a letter,” said Burnett. “This calls on Georgia to convene a special legislative session to look into, quote, ‘irregularities’ in the 2020 election. The letter falsely claims that the DOJ identified, quote, ‘Significant concerns that may have impacted the outcome of the election in multiple states, including the state of Georgia.’ End quote. That is a complete lie. The Department of Justice had not identified that. It’s a lie.”
Despite a massive issue with the Delta variant, many people are still deciding against getting vaccinated. And many of these individuals live in red states and get their news from Fox.
A number of Conservative politicians and media members have encouraged this behavior. And as of now, there are few consequences for those who have refused to get their shot.
Juliette Kayyem thinks it’s time for that to come to an end. The CNN pundit laid out her reasoning in a recent column and during a podcast appearance.
Laying out her idea to ban the unvaccinated from air travel, Kayyem told The Interview podcast, “There’s no such thing as a federal mandate. But the federal government can use carrots and sticks and and privileges and burdens. And one of the areas where it can do that is obviously on airline travel because the US government sets the rules and conditions for it.”
The former Obama staffer continued:
“I think using those levers to demand the right behavior is totally appropriate at this stage rather than the burden being imposed on the majority. You let individuals determine their risk level when your baseline is vaccines. The government is just sort of wishing that people would take vaccines, like now we have to make it hurt, hurt in terms of a burden to not take vaccines.”
For decades now, Richard Nixon has been seen as the presidential face of corruption. It was thought that no future commander in chief could ever face the same kind of controversy that the 37th president did.
But then again, no one could have ever imagined that a man like Donald Trump could have ever been elected president. And the sheer scope of the 45th president’s corruption is now coming clear.
It was recently revealed that Trump had asked the Department of Justice to help him rig the 2020 election. David Axelrod was asked about the story during a recent appearance on CNN.
Host Wolf Blitzer asked, “We
can now see for ourselves in black and white just how serious this attempt was to overturn the results of a free and fair democratic election here in the United States. How dangerous was this effort?”
Jackie Speier knows a thing or two about cults. Back in 1978, while serving as an aide to Congressman Leo Ryan, she was shot 5 times by members of Jim Jones cult.
For the last 14 years, Speier has served as a US congressperson. And she recently told CNN that she sees a lot of similarities between Jones and Trump.
The California Rep. told CNN’s Brian Stelter:
“You look at Donald Trump, a charismatic leader, who was able to continue to talk in terms that appealed to those who were disaffected, disillusions and who were looking for something, much like those who became part of Jim Jones’ congregation, the Peoples Temple. They were lost souls, and the only difference between Jim Jones and Donald Trump is the fact that we now have social media. So all these people can find themselves in ways that they couldn’t find themselves before.”
Fox News and Republicans in general have always talked about how they “back the blue.” As a result, many police officers around the country vote red. In fact, a 2016 poll showed that 84% of cops backed Donald Trump with only 8% of officer backing Hillary Clinton.
All of a sudden, though, the GOP and its media arms are not only not sticking up for cops, they’re bashing them. Tucker Carlson dedicated a segment of his show the other day to blasting Capitol officer Harry Dunn.
And during a recent show, Laura Ingraham gave out acting awards to the officers who testified during a recent hearing. “There was certainly a lot of violence that day, but it was not a terrorist attack,” she said. “It wasn’t 9/11. It wasn’t the worst thing that ever happened to America. It wasn’t an insurrection.”
Officer Aquilino Gonell was asked about Ingraham’s attack during a Thursday appearance on CNN. He told Erin Burnett:
“This is the first time I see that comment coming from this particular person. To watch her trash, because that’s what it is, a commentator that would trash somebody who, in my opinion, wasn’t there. So unless you were there in that crowd, being attacked by the rioters, you would not know, and you will never know, you never — my devotion for the country is bigger than the vitriol that she’s puking out… that person never served the country, will never raise her hand like I did so many times.”
It is not a monolith, but generally police officers support the Republican party. So what happens when supporters of the party savagely attack cops? The answer, so far, has been a whole lot of nothing.
During a recent interview, Capitol officer Michael Fanone said that he is yet to hear from the Fraternal Order of Police. Jake Tapperpressed FOP Head, Patrick Yoes, about the matter on Wednesday.
The CNN host asked, “Do you feel, because FOP endorsed Donald Trump and because so many members of FOP are Trump supporters, do you feel as though you can’t — as publicly, as vocally as you want to, as you otherwise would — express support for the officers who defended the Capitol that day for fear of running afoul of Trump supporter FOP members who actually side with the insurrectionists as opposed to the police officers who protected the Capitol that day?”
Yoes essentially declined to answer the question, saying that the union supports officers on both sides of the political aisle.
Tapper followed, “I just don’t see FOP out there decrying it in a way I think you would be if it was, for instance, somebody on MSNBC attacking a police officer. Do you feel that you cannot be as supportive of the Capitol Police officers, of the Metropolitan Police Department officers, as you would want to be because Trump supporters make up most of your union?”
Tapper: FOP regularly defends police officers. That’s your job.. I don’t see you doing it publicly.. Laura Ingraham was giving out fake academy awards accusing your police officers of acting…
Yoes: …I stopped watching the news
Tapper: That’s not news pic.twitter.com/cTbym2gibx
As horrible as the events of 1/6 were, the vast majority of Republican lawmakers would like people to forget about it. A select few GOP congresspeople were willing to investigate the matter.
Adam Kinzinger and Liz Cheney both accepted Nancy Pelosi’s invitation to participate in the 1/6 panel. And for their service to their country, they were branded “Pelosi Republicans.”
Still, as Cheney explained during a Tuesday appearance on CNN, she is willing to serve her country before she serves her party.
The Wyoming lawmaker was asked by Jake Tapper, “
These MAGA forces tried to steal the election once and they’re going to try again. And we don’t hear Kevin McCarthy and Steve Scalise and Elise Stefanik say, no, no, no, we would never do that again. There is zero attempt at reassuring people that what you are suggesting is not true.”
COVID never had to become a political issue. Unfortunately, then the virus hit American shores, the worst possible person was in charge. And Donald Trump had no problem downplaying the seriousness of the virus if it helped his chances at reelection.
Now the results of Trump’s actions are really starting to come into play. The vaccine is out and readily available for all Americans. But people in red states have been much more hesitant to get their shots than people in blue states. As a result, a variant of COVID-19 is now surging in many Republican areas.
Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson has pushed for his constituents to get vaccinated for months. It hasn’t been working, though, as the state has one of the lowest vax rates in the country. During a CNN interview on Sunday, Hutchinson blamed the poor numbers on myths.
The governor told host Jake Tapper, “I don’t know if I underestimated it, but, certainly, the resistance has hardened in certain elements, and is simply false information.”
— State of the Union (@CNNSotu)
July 25, 2021
Despite him overseeing the loss of the White House, Senate and Congress, the GOP will keep Donald Trump as their party’s figurehead. It’s a risky proposition considering he incited and insurrection on the US Capitol following his election loss.
And the more stories that come about Trump’s feelings on the riots, the harder it gets to defend him. Authors Phil Rucker and Carol Leonnig recently released a tape of the former president discussing January 6th. Trump claimed that the police had actually “ushered” the rioters into the building.
Jim Acosta and Brian Stelter talked about the new tape on CNN Thursday. “I cannot get over how delusional this sounds,” said Acosta. “I mean, the lies. It’s just nuts. But does it sound like the former president is emboldened to spin even more outrageous lies about January 6th as time passes on the deadly attack? We see this video day after day. It sounds delusional to listen to what he is saying.”
“Yeah, emboldened is the word,” responded Stelter. “That is why this is relevant. We’ve seeing him over time dig in further and further and lies on this level are like a power trip. They are a challenge to the audience. Lies on this level, delusions on this level, you know, you’re daring people not to believe their eyes and own ears and daring people to deny what they know them to be true.”
Jim Acosta says Trump's latest 'delusional' lies about the insurrection invite his supporters to live in alternate reality. pic.twitter.com/FllEoH3zfQ
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) July 22, 2021
Acosta closed the segment
There are many people in Donald Trump‘s orbit that are now facing legal trouble. The CFO of the Trump Organization, Allen Weisselberg, was recently arrested. And Rudy Giuliani, the former president’s friend and sometimes lawyer has his New York City apartment searched.
Today, Tom Barrack, a Trump fundraiser who headed up the 2017 inauguration fund was arrested on serious charges. While the charges don’t necessarily involve Trump, Elie Honig explained why the evidence is overwhelming.
Host Jake Tapper asked, “According to the charges, Tom Barrack had a dedicated cell phone with a secure message app with the purpose for communicating with senior UAE officials. Based on what you’ve seen so far, does this sound like a compelling case to you?”
“The evidence looks not just strong but overwhelming to me,” Honig said. “This is a 46-page indictment, it goes into great detail. Really the main crime here has three components. One, was Barrack lobbying the United States government, and not just lobbying but successfully in the ways that Evan just laid out. Two, was he doing so on behalf of UAE? It looks like DOJ has emails and texts proving just that. And, third, did Barrack fail to register with DOJ as a foreign lobbyist? It looks like they have a very strong case to me.”
CNN's Elie Honig says that the evidence against Trump ally Tom Barrack is overwhelming. pic.twitter.com/dUkzdNqmTb
— PoliticusUSA (@politicususa) July 20, 2021
Shortly after the January 6th insurrection on the Capitol,
The hosts of the Fox News network are a bit all over the place on the vaccine. A few hosts have admitted to getting inoculated. Bret Baier took a ton of heat from Fox viewers after posting a picture of him getting the shot. Steve Doocy pleaded with viewers on Monday to get vaccinated.
But many of Fox’s opinion hosts have railed against the vaccine and refused to disclose their status. And personalities like Tucker Carlson and Laura Ingraham have been especially angry at the idea of vaccine passports (having to prove your status in order to work or travel).
Carlson went as far as comparing vaccine passports to Jim Crow laws, telling viewers, “
pretty much everybody agreed that segregation was the worst thing this country ever did. Forcing certain categories of citizens into separate lesser accommodations barring them from public places, treating them like lepers, untouchable, that was completely immoral and wrong.”