Tuesday, March 02, 2021

Sure Why Not

Could wait just, I dunno, 3 more weeks...

We Had A Mixed Run

Some good, some bad. Sondheim, Lloyd Webber. All a bit like that. Guess it's coming to an end.

Because It's The Right Thing To Do

"Their murderer got off on a technicality so our murderer should too" is a strange kind of reasoning some people apply to politicians.

Yes it is absolutely true that a disgusting sex pest and likely serial rapist was president for 4 years and no Republicans cared, but supposedly "we" didn't care about that just because he was a Republican.

Busy Couple Of Decades

9/11, the financial crisis and Great Recession, and covid.

Other things, but those are the sort of (if not completely) random hit by a hurricane type events (we could add in some actual hurricanes, of course), not the things we chose to do (like Iraq). I was going to make another point, but as I teed this up it occurred to me that for people not directly affected by the worst of Trump's policies, and for people who aren't cursed with the hobby of paying attention to the horror that is The Politics Show, the 3 years of his administration before covid were a pretty good time. No I am not saying you have to hand it to him, I'm just saying that it's a reasonable explanation for how he almost won (the electoral college, at least).

The simplest lesson is... full employment is good, and the economists tasked with advising on how to achieve it instead fought it for decades (they tend to fight it more when Democrats are in charge). And they still are.

Why Aren't Some Schools Opening

When the second sentence refutes the first.
Scientists and doctors who study infectious disease in children largely agreed, in a recent New York Times survey about school openings, that elementary school students should be able to attend in-person school now.
Wow that's great! Continuing to the second sentence.
With safety measures like masking and opening windows, the benefits outweigh the risks, the majority of the 175 respondents said.
All we need are "safety measures like masking and opening windows." Ah, yes, "windows that can open and provide adequate ventilation," a thing that every school has in the era of school shootings, totally, especially in winter.

I actually don't have strong opinions about or claim expert knowledge of school opening issues, I just know that there are lots of places with 30+ kids to a small class, inadequate-to-nonexistent circulating HVAC systems, and windows that open barely or not at all.

But new fans!

We constantly have journalism with this reasoning:

If I had some ham,
I could make a ham sandwich,
if I had some bread
The only thing stopping me from eating this lovely ham sandwich is unions.
And maybe there are some schools that could be opening safely that aren't! I have no idea. But there are plenty that cannot, quite obviously, if they have to meet these criteria.

He Looked Competent On Teevee

Even now, knowing everything we know about then and since and, yes, now, I see a lot of social media defenders of Cuomo, basically lauding him for being a reassuring presence last Spring. And I can't argue with these people, if they were comforted and resassured by the banter with his brother on CNN, that's something. It is certainly something in the moment.

People said the same about Giuliani on 911 for years. Drove me nuts, but it was real to them.

But with bit of distance... that's all it was.

Comforting when someone says, "I feel your pain," but even better when they do something about it.

Morning Thread

A lot of people will have trouble paying their mortgages in Northern Virginia if we don't let MBS murder people.

Monday, March 01, 2021

So, So, Cheerio, Yell, Scream Bravo

In general, I really do recommend resisting the urge to become enamored with politicians who are good at the politics show. Sure, the show is part of politics, and I can't deny that, but the wonderful readers of this very fine blog are Advanced Politics Knowers and should therefore be more personally immune to the charm of a good zinger. Sure we like a good speech, and it's fine when someone owns the cons for a change, but don't fall into the trap of thinking words speak louder than actions.

Happy Hour Thread

Mondays are getting longer every week.

Your Moment Of Zen

More People Should Be Canceled

The dumb discourse about "cancel culture" is mostly focused on society's elites, the people least likely to be CANCELED and the most able to financially weather it on the off chance that they are. Even elites can get a bump rap sometimes, of course, but it's a bit odd that those elites are profoundly invested in the idea that people in positions of power and authority have less responsibility than the rest of us. Haha I kid that's not odd at all!

What's odd is that a large number of less elite people don't see this for what it is.

The Worst People

Racist bullies in big groups, powered by the smells of their own racist farts and some of Don Jr.'s stash, are not pleasant guests.
Hyatt added that "colleagues occasionally faced hostility from attendees" at the conference when attendees were reminded to wear masks and socially distance. Hyatt also said it was "extremely disappointed by the disrespect many individuals involved in the event showed to our colleagues".

In its statement on Sunday, Hyatt said: "We take the concern raised about the prospect of symbols of hate being included in the stage design at CPAC 2021 very seriously as all such symbols are abhorrent and unequivocally counter to our values as a company."

Lunch Thread

My days of going to raves, or whatever, are long over (if they ever existed), but I do miss things like going to concerts.

Plenty of other countries fucked up, too, in not so dissimilar ways and for not so dissimilar reasons, but it didn't have to be this way.

I'm Not Bigger Than Life

A smarter and less lazy person than me should write a good essay about this, but as the last guy came to power, a lot of people suddenly found themselves imagining that they were somehow, suddenly, at the center of the world, that they were stewards of destiny. This does include many journalists, particularly some younger ones. You could see them having a bit too much fun "covering" the important "alt-right." Yes, you're getting selfies with Richard Spencer. Cool cool cool.

There was a pretty similar phenomenon in the early Bush administration, especially with The War On Terra and Our Great Imperial Adventure in Iraq. A bunch of twentysomething Old New Republic types who were intoxicated by their role in history, or some bullshit. Great Men (and women) on a Great Mission.

Power. It's a hell of a drug.

Well, so what? What's wrong with being sexy?

People like Cuomo don't thrive without a very large number of enablers, over a period of many years, and an even larger number of people not directly involved who know exactly what's going on but don't feel any impulse to treat the whole enterprise, and everyone involved, as corrupt and, importantly, unhireable.

Morning Thread

Nothing to see here. Move along.

Sunday, February 28, 2021

Sunday Night

Rock on.

Sunday Happy Hour

Crack fix for DC journalists today.

Blue Rudy

A very annoying part of The Discourse in 2020 was when people were swooning for Andrew Cuomo, simply because he got on teevee and appeared to be (*appeared to be*) vaguely competent at handling this crisis by doing interviews with his brother.

Libs, that's how we got Rudy.

Great Moments In Cold War History

Vote By Mail

I don't think it should be ended, but it was very popular with Republicans before the peculiar circumstances of the 2020 election, and the subsequent need to latch onto any "fraud" lie, and I think it's fairly clear that ending it would not actually favor Republicans.

The Governor of New York Is Totally Not A Sex Pest So Stop Saying That